Reporting Dave Crawley
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Did you know that the first Professional Football Player took the field in Pittsburgh 120 years ago?
That’s one of many stories featured in a Hall of Fame Exhibit coming to the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum at Heinz History Center on October 6.
“All the coolest stuff in Canton, Ohio related to professional football, and it’s all coming to Pittsburgh October 6,” says History Center President Andy Masich.
“From Jim Brown to Johnny Unitas, Knute Rockne’s original helmet. You know, one of those dog eared leather helmets will be in the show,” Masich says.
It may be similar to the helmet worn by Pudge Heffelfinger, who played the first pro football game on the North Side.
“Pudge got paid $500 and we’ll have the documents to prove it,” Masich says.
“It’s the 120th Anniversary of that very first pro football game. 80th season for the Steelers, 50th anniversary for the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the 40th Anniversary of the greatest play in NFL history,” Masich continues.
It’s a moment etched in football lore. The immaculate reception.
“It’s all a blur. All I remember is leaving the backfield, and the next thing I remember is going down the sidelines,” says Chairman of the Sports Museum, Franco Harris.
Harris helped make this the first stop from the exhibit from Canton.
“The Pro Football Hall of Fame looked at all the information and said Pittsburgh’s the place,” Harris says.