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Special News Articles:

1891: First Game Ever Played

 

1988: Seattle All-Stars in Hong Kong

 

 

Fast Facts:

 

Hugh Edward Langston was the first football player in the Northwest to die a football related death.  Langston died after being injured at his home practicing for an upcoming game for the Seattle Athletic Club on Oct 28, 1893. He was 21.

_______

 

Two football leagues existed in the 1940's commonly mistaken for "semi-pro" leagues.  The Field House Football League was in fact a 16-years old maximum and under 135lbs league.  The Boys Club Football which included teams like the Seattle Associated Boys Club, Wallingford, Ballard and Arbor Heights were for players under the age of 19 and were not high school letterwinners.  They did play teams like the Seattle Ramblers who were legit men's teams (athletic club teams) or semi pro teams.

________

 

West Seattle residents voted former Yellowjacket star Thurle Thonton as the Greatest Athlete of the Half-Century on Dec 14, 1950.  A trophy awarded to the best all-around athlete bore Thornton's name for many years.

Elmo Hudgens Memorial Trophy

(click on pic to enlarge)

 

 

What ever happened to:

The West Seattle Yellowjackets?

The Yellowjackets, one of the most dominant pre-war amateur teams in the Northwest running from the 1920's to 1941 became the centerpiece in Seattle's move for "professional" sports. With the number of teams collapsed due to the war, businessmen went to work in scooping up players and building "pro" teams to compete with the surging NFL and later AFL teams in the east.  The first professional version of the Yellowjackets came in the form of the Seattle Shipbuilders of the 1942 War Industries League, that team, infused with sponsor money from the booming Isaacson Iron Company became the Seattle Ironworkers or Steelers in some circles of 1943.

Courted by the American Football League (a California-based venture) the team then became the Seattle Bombers of 1944.  This lasted only one year as Al Davies and Jimmy Mandas battled in court over ownership of the team which would sit out the 1945 season.  By 1946 Davies emerged victorious and moved the team to Tacoma and the "Indians" were born as part of the Pacific Coast Professional Football League.  This team again only lasted one year and many of the players found their way towards a 1947 semi pro team called the Rainier Beach Ramblers...eventually named the Seattle Ramblers.  The Ramblers would prove a stable home for nearly 15 years until the death of team originator Dick Barnes and the next incarnation of "professional" football spearheaded by Lafa Lane in 1964 who was in search of a pro  franchise for Seattle.  This team would begin as the Edmonds Warriors and eventually become the Seattle Rangers of the 1966-69 Continental Football League.  After the collapse of the Continental League prior to the 1970 season, no pro football league would make a legitimate play at competing against the NFL and semi pro went into its darkest days.  Those players still hanging on would catch on with teams like the Seattle Cavaliers in the early 70's and the Pierce County Bengals in the late 70's and early 80's, then the Auburn Panthers of the mid-80's.  But by now the demographics of the teams was nothing like the original West Seattle Yellowjackets.  No longer was the top team in the region populated with recent stars from the University of Washington, now they were populated with a few junior college athletes and a majority of high school players who skipped going to college.

Over a span of some 60+ years the minor league football scene went from a purely amateur sport as mandated by membership in the West Seattle Athletic club with throngs of fanatical supporters traveling by the thousands to support their team, to repeated incarnations of "Professional" teams doted with local collegiate stars still available during the war years.  But the professional would give way again to the amateur when leagues collapsed under the weight of rising transportation costs and dwindling gate proceeds as the NFL and AFL signed the best collegians and left the semi pros to pick through the scraps. 

The lure of a pay day has never left the game as every few years the amateurs are courted by someone with professional dreams only to have them dashed back to the real world of amateur football leaving it a little worse off than it was before each time.

Seattle finally got it's pro team in 1976 thus ending any need to talk about a pro franchise, but nonetheless, no fewer than five "pro" leagues have tried to form in the Northwest since '76 and all have failed leaving the communities that had their hopes dashed as the stadium lights went out, angry, frustrated and indifferent to the minor league teams that today dot the landscape of the Northwest.  Those promises of profit sharing, stock shares of community teams, and local non-profits having their operating funds swelled with donations from the teams and leagues never materialized and the blueprint would be tossed away only to be be picked up a decade later, dusted off and a new spin put on it and the process repeated once more.

Minor league football was community-based football in it's heydays where a city like Issaquah could gush with pride for their local team because they knew the team personally and could trust it would be there when they woke up Sunday morning.  The players weren't filled with unrealistic or grandiose dreams of being professionals, they were playing a game they loved, with teammates they enjoyed the game with.   The amateur game is a delicate symbiotic relationship between a community and the reality of what minor league football is.  When that balance is achieved, teams last for decades with thousands watching and remembering the fun under the lights.  When it's not, teams flame out quickly, sportswriters pen stories reminding the community of the last horrible group to try to make a buck off of the naive townspeople and college players scoff at playing "sandlot" football.

Does minor league football in the Northwest have that ability to reach symbiotic stability once more?  Or will it continue to be watched merely by girlfriends and family members while the community-at-large goes about it's business uninterested in what's happening under the bright lights on a warm summer Saturday night?

 

1906 was a year of significant change to football.  The rules of the game expanded the yardage to be made for a first down from 5 to 10 years, and athletes were "Athertonized" being forced to choose between Club team, and collegiate team.  No longer could they play for both teams in the same season.  This led to many college stars being declared ineligible by the AAU, then the governing body of amatuer sports in college.

  TEAMS & LEAGUES OF THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST

This section is currently under research and subject to change as more facts are uncovered.

Documented Leagues- (Years of Operation)

     
    Pacific Northwest Football League
(2013)

Pacific Football League

(2011- Present)

Western Washington Football Alliance (2010-Present)

Professional Developmental Football League

(2009-2011; 2013) $$

Washington Football League

(2009-Present)

Next Level Football League

(2009)

North American Football League Northwest Division

(2008-2010)

Cascade Football League

(2007-2010)

Pacific Northwest Conference (2006-2007)

Evergreen Football League

(2005-2008)

Inland Northwest League

(2004-2005)

North American Football League Big Sky Division

(2001)

Northwest Football League

(1998- 2008; 2010)

Oregon Football League

(1998-2010)

Rocky Mountain Football League

(1997-Present)

Montana Football League

(1997)

Pacific Football League

(1995-1998)

InterMountain Football League

(1993 - 1996)

Professional Spring Football League (1992)

Amateur Developmental Football League (1991)

Minor League Football System (1989-1990)

Northwest Football League

(1988-1994)

Northwest Football Alliance

(1981-1987)

Northwest Professional Football League (1981)

Pacific Northwest Football League (1980)

Northwest International League (1971-1980)

Pacific Football League

(1966)  $$

Continental Football League

(1965-1969)  $$

North Pacific Football League

(1962 - 1965)

175lb Northwest Football League (1948-49)

Canadian Senior Football League

(1947-1975)

 

American Professional Football League  (1944) $$

Pacific Coast Professional Football League (1945-1948) $$

160lb Amateur Football League

(1946-1947)

Northwest War Industries Football League

(1942)

Washington Independent Football League

(1942)

Fort Lewis Service League

(1942)

 

Northwest Service League

(1941-1945)

 

Olympic Peninsula Service League

(1939-1943)

 

Puget Sound 160lb Football League

(1936)

Northwest Amateur Football League

(1933-1941)

Seattle Community League

(1929-1940)

Seattle Independent Football League

(1926)

Camp Lewis Service League

(1917)

Spokane City League

(1907)

Pacific Northwest Association (1892 - 1914)

     

TEAMS

 

WASHINGTON

Apple Valley Bucks

(2003-2004)

Atlantic Street Merchants

(1928-1929)

Auburn Panthers

(1984-1987)

Ballard Community Club

(1927-1929)

Bellevue/Eastside Express

(1984-1988)

Bellingham Bell-Jets

(1965)

Bellingham Blitz

(2009-)

Bellingham Bulldogs

(2008-)

Bellingham Eagles

(1997-2001)

Bellingham Steamrollers

(1931)

Blue Mountain/Walla Walla Stars (2004-2009)

Boeing Aero Mechanics

(1940)

 

Bothell Bulldogs

(2006)

Burien/Sea Tac Flyers

(1973-1980)

Bremerton All-Stars/Kitsap AC

(1926 - 1931)

Bremerton Destroyers

(1935-1938)

Bremerton Mountaineers

(1943)

Bremerton Navy Yellowjackets

Bremerton Red Raiders

(1939-1942)

Bremerton Rockets

(1945)

Broadway Athletic Club

(1926-1936)

Brown's Pharmacy Browns

(1906-1907)

 

Camp Deception Pass CCC

(1935)

Camp Elma CCC

(1935)

Camp George CCC

(1935)

Cape George

(1935)

Central Washington Lobos

(2013)

Chewelah
(1972)

Clark County Yellowjackets

(2008)

Columbia Basin Riverhawks

(2006-)

Columbia Cougars

(1999-2001)

Colville Indians
(1972-1980)

Cowlitz County Cavaliers

(1994-1996)

 

Eastside Chiefs

(1995 - 2001)

Eastside Panthers

(1991)

Eastside Hawks

(2002-2004)

Eastside/Cascade Xtreme

(2010-2011)

Edmonds Chargers

(1979)

Edmonds Warriors

(1962-66)

Ellensburg Town Team

(1934)

Enumclaw Silver Barons

(1934-1941)

 

Everett/Snohomish Co. Ramblers

(1965-1978) 

Everett Tramps

(1993)

 

Everett Wildcats

(1930-1934; 1965-1967)

Federal Way 49ers

(1996)

 

Grays Harbor Bearcats

(2009-Present)

Grays Harbor Loggers/Indians

(1935-1938)

 

Happy Peppy Brewers/South End

(1927-1934)

 
 

Issaquah Athletic Club

Issaquah Firemen/Alpines

(1934-1941)

Italian Athletic Club

(1934-1936)

Japanese Taiyo's Athletic Club

(1928-1934)

Jefferson Park Athletic Club

(1926-1928)

 

Kent Athletic Club

Kettle Falls
(1972-1975)

King County Jaguars

(1999-2009)

King County/Pacific Coast Vikings

(1982)

Kirkland/Eastside/Seattle Bulldogs

(1971-1974)

Kitsap County Bears

(2008-2011)

Kitsap County Chiefs

(1977-1979)

Kitsap County Kings

(1980-1981)

Kitsap County Pioneers

(1982)

Kootenai County Eagles

(2005)

Lakewood Wolves

(2007)

Lewis County Pythons

(2008)

   

Moses Lake Bulls

(2004-2005)

Moses Lake Stallions

(2005)

 

Nettleton-Baldwin Lumber Company

New York Bakery

(1935)

Nippon Athletic Club

(1924-1929)

Nisie Vets

North King County/

Pacific Northwest/

Westside Wildcats

(2008-2010; 2012)

Northwest (WA) Avalanche

(2004-2007)

Northwest Storm

(1994)

   

Oak Harbor Athletic Club

Okanogan County Commandos

(2005-)

Olympia Senators/Shamrocks

(1935-1936)

Olympic Peninsula Eagles

(2006-Present)

Palouse/Hells Canyon Thunder

(2004-Present)

Pierce County Bengals

(1973-1980)

Pierce County Bengals

(1988-Present)

Pierce County Knights

(2006)

Plateau Nightmare

(2008)

Port Angeles Bonecrushers

(1942)

 

Port Townsend Athletic Club

(1893-1901)

Port Townsend Cougars

(1935)

   

Puget Sound/Tacoma Invaders (2007-Present)

Puget Sound/Federal Way/Emerald City Jets (1990-2002)

Puget Sound Kings

(1981-82)

Puget Sound Knights

(1980)

Puget Sound Pirates

(2008-2009)

 

Puget Sound/Kent Sharks

(1989)

Puget Sound Titans

(2008)

 Rainier Avalanche
(2013)

 

Rainier Valley Athletic Club

(1910-1929)

 

Renton Chiefs

Renton Rams

(1937-1940)

Renton Ravens

(2002-)

     
 

Seattle Athletic Club 

(1892-1926)

Seattle Blue Devils

Seattle Bombers

(1944) $$

  Seattle Cavaliers

Seattle/Tacoma Express

(1989-90)

Seattle Ironworkers

(1943)

 
 

Seattle/Rainier Beach AC Ramblers

(1947-1964)

Seattle Rangers

(1966-1969)  $$

Seattle Shipbuilders

(1943)

Seattle Stallions

(2006-2010; 2012-2013)

Seattle Titans

Shelton/Mason County Grizzlies

(1989)

Skagit County Crusaders

(2008)

 

Skagit Valley Lightning/North Sound Sting (2006- 2010)

Skagit Valley Raiders

Sky Valley/Snohomish County Vikings

Sno-King Blue Knights

(1984-1993)

Snohomish County Thunder

 

South King County Colts

(2009-)

South King County Lions

(1994)

South Kitsap Blue Devils

(2008)

South Sound Shockers

(2005-)

Spanaway/Puget Sound Outlaws

(2011)

Spokane Athletic Club

(1892-1907)

Spokane Expos

(1981)

Spokane Fury

(1983-1985)

Spokane Golden Hawks

(1979-1980)

Spokane Independents

(1906)

Spokane Manlowes

(1942)

 

Spokane Nightmare

(2002-03)

Spokane Rams/Athletics

(1959-1961)

Spokane Sabercats

 (2005-2008)

Spokane Shockers

(1968-1969) $$

   

Spokane Valley Olympics

(1960)

Spokane Volunteers

(1959-1964)

Spokane Wolfpack

(2009-)

State Line Miners

(2005-2008)

Tacoma Athletic Club

(1891-1928)

Tacoma Cobras

(2009-)

 

Tacoma Indians

(1946) $$

Tacoma Invaders

(2007-)

 

Tacoma Predators

(2008)

Tacoma Red Devils/Columbians

(1936-1939)

Tacoma Shipbuilders

(1943)

Tacoma Tyees

(1962-1966)

Tacoma Warriors

(2009-)

Thurston County Vikings

(1975-1976)

Tri City Knights

(2005-2008)

Tri City Rattlers

(2004)

Ubangi Blackhawks

(1937)

Uptown Athletic Club

(1934-1936)

Valley Mustangs

(2007-2008)

Valley Veterans

 

Vancouver/Clark County Grizzlies

(1984)

Vancouver Posse

(1997-1998)

Vancouver/Clark County Vipers

(2008 -)

Vivienda Club

Waitsburg Elite

(2013)

Washington Cavaliers

(1998-)

Washington Wolfpack

(2011)

 

Washington State Penn Steelers

(1948-1962)

WA State Reformatory Monroe

(1935-1974)

Wenatchee Valley Rainbows

(1936)

Wenatchee Valley Rams

(2005-)

West Plains Cowboys

(2003-2004)

West Seattle All-Stars

West Seattle Athletic Club

(1922 - 1941)

West Seattle Steelers

(1988)

West Seattle Warhawks

(1980-1988)

 

West Sound Saints/Orcas

(2000-2009)

Whatcom County/Bellingham Lakers

(1971-1973)

Whatcom County Raiders

(2007-2008)

White Center Athletic Club

Wisemans U District /Elks #92

(1929-1934)

 

Woodland Park Athletic Club

(1926)

 

Yakima American Legion

(1935)

Yakima County Scorpions

(2004-2006)

Yakima Mavericks

(2005-Present)

 

Youngstown/Brewsters Cigar

(1933-1934)

     

OREGON

"Admirals"

(1967)

   

Beaver Athletic Club

(1914)

 

Bend Mountaineers

(2011)

Central Oregon Stampede

(2001-2006)

Columbia River Coyotes

(2003-2008)

Cottage Grove Gryphons

(2008-2009)

Douglas County Outlaws

(1997-2002)

East County Blackshirts

(2008-)

Eastern Oregon Timber Rattlers

(2008)

Eugene Blast

(1988-1993)

Eugene Bombers

(1966-1967) $$

 

 

 

 

Eugene/Oakridge Timberwolves

(2002-2004)

Eugene/Lane County Dragons

(2003-2007)

 

Eugene "Oregons"

(1895)

Eugene "Rescuers"

(1895)

Grants Pass Marauders

(1999-2000)

Hermiston/Umatilla Coyotes

(2010)

Hermiston Hurricanes

(2010-2012)

High Desert Lightning

(2007-Present)

Innercity Shine

(2011-2012)

Klamath Crusaders

(1998-2011)

Lane County Lumberjacks

(2008)

Merrill Stallions

(1999)

Mount Hood Eruption

(2012)

 

Multnomah Athletic Club

(1891-1926) 

Multnomah County Buccaneers

(2000-2007) 

Northwest Terminators
(2010)

 

Oregon Outlaws

(2006- 2012)

 

Oregon Thunderbolts

(1989-2001; 2003-Present)

Oregon City Steelheads

(1982-1983)

Piedmont Club

(1933)

Portland Athletic Club

(1894)

Portland Boilermakers

(1942)

Portland Boltz

(2013)

Portland Independents

(1926)

Portland Loggers

(1969) $$

Portland Pioneers

(1961)

Portland Rockets

(1944)  $$

Portland/Oswego Thunderbirds

(1962-1966)

Portland Pioneers/Thunderbirds

(1979-80)

 

Rogue Valley Blaze

(1998-1999)

Rogue Warriors

(1998-2011)

Salem Doom

(2000)

Salem/Oregon/Portland Monarchs

(2006-Present)

Salem/Oregon Panthers

(1998-2004)

Salem Pioneers

(1988)

 

Siskiyou Savages/South Coast Storm (2004-2008)

Southern Oregon Renegades

(2008-Present)

Southern Oregon Timberwolves

(1997)

Southwestern Oregon Raiders

(2003-2007)

Springfield Buzzards

(2008-Present)

The Dalles Athletic Club

(1907)

Tri-City Heat

(1990)

Umatilla Panthers

(2011)

Umpqua Valley Knights

(2004-2010)

Van-Port Thunderbirds

(1979)

   

Washington County Grizzlies

(1982-1983)

Willamette Valley Raiders

(2004-Present)

Yamhill County Enforcers

IDAHO

Arco Anarchy

(2010)

   

Blackfoot/Portneuf Valley Dragons

(1997-1999)

Boise Bombers

(2009)

Boise Cardinals

(2000)

Boise Roughriders

(2001-2006)

Boise Speed

(2007-2008)

Bonneville Timberwolves

 

Fort Hall/Rocky Mountain Cobras

(2000-2002)

 

Idaho Buccaneers

(2009-Present)

Idaho Matadors

(2005-Present)

Idaho Falls Mustangs

(1997-Present)

Kuna Eagles

(2009)

Madison/Eastern Idaho Lionz

(2002-2009)

 

Mini-Cassia/Magic Valley Bulldawgs

(1998-Present)

Mountain Home Bengals

(2004)

Mountain Home Marauders

(2003)

 

Pocatello Fighting Kangaroos/Bandits

(1997-1998)

Pocatello Predators

(2004-2009)

Pocatello Silverbacks

(2001-2003)

Rocky Mountain Bulls

(1997-1999)

Snake River Rebels

(1999-2003)

Snake River Sabercats

Treasure Valley Cowboys

(1999-2000)

Treasure Valley Panthers

(2002)

Treasure Valley Spartans

(2009-Present)

   

Twin Falls Wildcats

(1999)

Upper Valley Rattlers

(1999)

Upper Valley Vikings

(2010)

     

MONTANA

Anaconda Athletic Club

(1897-1899)

 Billings Bullets

 (2012) 

 Billings Knights

(1997)

Billings Warriors

(1998-2000)

Bitterroot Blaze

(2006 - Present)

Bozeman Cardinals

(1993-1996)

Bozeman Kodiaks

(1997-2001)

Butte Athletic Club "Benson's/Beaut's"

(1893-1899)

 

Butte Buzzies

(1949-1952)

Butte "Hooper's"

(1897)

Clark Fork Rush

(2010) 

Gallatin Valley Snow Devils

(2010)

Great Falls Falcons

(1993?)

Great Falls Gladiators

(2000-Present)

Great Falls Rangers

(1999-2000)

Glacier Knights

(2004-Present)

Helena Athletic Club

(1902)

Helena Knights

(2001)

Helena Titans

(2002-Present)

Missoula Athletic Club

(1902)

Missoula Phoenix

(2007 - Present)

 

Missoula Raptors

(2005-2006)

Montana Panthers

(2001)

 

Tri Valley Titans

(2000)

MILITARY

Nov 11, 1935 - Annual Armistice Day Navy vs Army game at Stadium Bowl, Tacoma.  Navy won 6-2.

Alaska Clippers

(1944)

Arlington Navalairs

(1945)

Camp Hanford Atomeers

(1951-1955)

Camp Lewis Soldiers

(1917-1918)

Camp Murray "Arkansas Travelers"

(1941)

 

Camp White "Bulldozers"

(1943)

Ellensburg Engineers

(1943)

Farragut Bluejackets

(1945-1948)

Fort Casey

(1904)

Fort Flagler Soldiers

(1904)

Fort Lawton Soldiers

(1925-1951)

Fort Lewis 47th Infantry Panthers

(1957-1958)

Fort Lewis 4x4s

(1953-1956)

Fort Lewis Brown Bombers

(1942)

Fort Lewis Engineers

(1946)

Fort Lewis Medics

(1944)

Fort Lewis Mountaineers

(1943)

Fort Lewis Soldiers

(1945)

Fort Lewis Rangers

(1961-1964)

Fort Lewis Rockets

(1950-1952)

 

Fort Lewis Second Infantry

(1949)

Fort Lewis Streaks

(1942)

Fort Lewis Trains

(1959)

Fort Lewis Warriors

(1977)

Fort Stevens

(1918)

Fort Worden

(1943)

Geiger Field Chiefs

(1952)

Klamath Falls Marine Leathernecks

(1944

Malmstrom Air Force Warriors

(1944 - 1957)

 

Pasco Naval Air Base

(1942)

Pocatello Marine Devil Dogs

(1943-1945)

Port Angeles Coast Guard Commandos

(1942-1944)

Portland Coast Guard

(1943)

 

Sand Point Naval Air Station

(1945-1948)

Second Air Force Superbombers

(1942)

Spokane Air Base Commandos

(1943)

Vancouver Barracks

(1917-1918)

Walla Walla Army Air Base

(1942)

Washington National Guard    
     

NAVAL SHIP TEAMS BRIEF STATION IN BREMERTON

 

US Marines sent home to recover from injuries, malaria and other illnesses started teams at Naval Reserve bases like Klamath Falls, Oregon and Pocatello, Idaho.

 

USS Arizona

(1915-1941)

USS Idaho

(1919-1946)

USS Maryland

(1921-1947)

USS Nevada

(1916-1941)

USS New Mexico

(1918-1946)

USS Oklahoma

 

USS Pennsylvania

(1915-1948)

USS Tennessee

USS West Virginia

(1923-1947)

 

CANADA (Played American Teams)

  Abbotsford AFB  

British Columbia Blue Bombers

(1981)

British Columbia Chargers

(1970-1973)

British Columbia Panthers

(1980)

British Columbia Spartans

(2008)

Burnaby Barons

(1972-1973)

Calgary Colts

(1959 - 1980)

Edmonton Wildcats (Jr's)

(1959)

Kamloops Kougars

(1958)

Langley Longhorns

(2009)

Oak Bay/Victoria Drakes

(1953-1961)

Surrey Rams (Jr's)

(1950-2010)

Vancouver Cubs

(1953-1955)

Vancouver Blue Bombers (Jr's)

(1959)

Vancouver Kats

(1965)

 

Vancouver Wildcats

(1958-1959)

Vancouver Trojans (Jr's)

Victoria Steelers/Tyees

(1966-1967) $$

     

WOMEN'S

Boise Xteme

(2004)

Corvallis Pride

(2001-2010)

Eugene Edge

(2004)

Greenwood Mod Squad
(1973)

Portland Fighting Fillies

(2010-Present)

Oregon Thunder/Portland Shockwave

(2002-Present)

Tacoma/Seattle Majestics

(2002-Present)

Tacoma Trauma

(2012)

West Seattle Bosomed Buddies

(1973)

 

 

 

 

MODIFIED LEAGUES

 

Northwest 8 Man League
(2012)
National Nineman League (NNFL)
(2001 - Present)
Idaho Contact League (ICFL)
(1999 - Present)
     
     
 
 
 
  2008-12 GNFA GREATER NORTHWEST FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION.