Profile America: First Professional Football Game

The Latrobe Athletic Association was the first all-professional football team. Credit: Pro Football Hall of Fame

The Latrobe Athletic Association was the first all-professional football team. Credit: Pro Football Hall of Fame

First Pro Football GameSunday, September 3 — Football season is soon to be in full swing again. Some colleges began playing their schedules late last month, and the National Football League season starts this coming Thursday. For many years, it was believed the first professional game took place on this date in 1895 in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. It was considered professional because one player was paid $10. However, recent research found that the first professional game took place in 1892 in Pittsburgh between two athletic clubs. There, a Yale All-American named William “Pudge” Heffelfinger scored the game’s only points, and received $500 for his gridiron exploits. That is over $13,500 today, or close to half of America’s current annual per capita income of $28,900.

You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at .

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