The Joyce Sports Research Collection: Football
What follows is a guide to some of the more significant materials pertaining to American football held in Rare Books and Special Collections, Hesburgh Libraries of Notre Dame. It does not include football materials held elsewhere in the Hesburgh Libraries, or in Notre Dame's University Archives. Its purpose is to provide researchers with a convenient overview of Special Collections' resources in this subject area; it does not aspire to be comprehensive. Items listed in these finding aids do not circulate; they may be requested and consulted in the Department of Special Collections, 102 Hesburgh Library, from 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. weekdays. Researchers interested in materials specifically relating to football at Notre Dame should contact University Archives, 607 Hesburgh Library (email email@example.com).
Title or collection descriptions on this page are linked to records, inventories, and other appropriate types of finding aid. The dates that follow many of the annual and periodical titles on this page indicate the span of years a given title was published; available holdings are indicated in the linked finding aid. Questions concerning the materials on the page may be directed to the department (email firstname.lastname@example.org; phone 574-631-0290).
The Department's Rare Book Collections include all the Libraries' earlier and scarcer sports related titles, including those with a bearing on football. These may be searched in ALEPH, the Hesburgh Libraries' online catalog.
Annuals — guide format
Holdings of the Spalding (1891-1940), Barnes (1941-49), and National Collegiate Athletic Association (1950- ) annual football guides. This sequence of titles provides the single most comprehensive account of the history of college football in the United States. Each guide recounts the events of the previous season. The earliest Spaldings were essentially rulebooks; game scores (and photographs) first appeared in 1893, and very select individual statistics in 1912. From 1906-1918, 1920-25, and 1929-32, Spalding published various regional editions of its football guides, which often differ significantly in coverage - though the extent to which they differ varies, depending on the year of issue. In general, the Eastern editions emphasize developments in New York and New England, the Middle Atlantic states, and the Southeast, while the Western editions emphasize developments in the rest of the country, including the Midwest. Pacific Coast editions were published in 1923-25 and 1930-32. Coverage is never limited to the region of emphasis, however; there is a great deal of overlap. The contemporary publication NCAA Football is essentially a record book in its retrospective, statistical orientation.
Holdings of various professional football guides, including the Spalding (1935-40), NFL (1941- ), and Sporting News (1947-50; 1970- ) National Football League guides; the All-America Football Conference Record Manual (1947-50); and the Sporting News American Football League guide (1962-69). Each of these titles provides an overview of the previous season's events.
Holdings of various annuals emphasizing instructional material, rules, and officiating, including the Spalding Athletic Library How to Play Foot Ball (1894-1937).
Annuals — magazine format
A collection of magazine format annuals devoted primarily or exclusively to American college football. Issues of most titles published after 1950 are listed by year on a single finding aid (College Football Magazine Format Annuals / Miscellaneous Titles). Some earlier titles appear on individual finding aids; these include the Illustrated Football Annual (1930-53), the Writer's Digest annuals of 1931-33, The Intercollegiate Football Pictorial (1935-36), the Street and Smith College Football Yearbook (1940- ), Football Prevues (1944-48), and Football Digest (1947-52).
A collection of magazine format annuals devoted primarily or exclusively to American professional football. Though most titles postdate 1960, the relatively few published before that time - including Who's Who in Major League Football (1935-36), the Elbak annuals of 1941-62, and the variously published league yearbooks of 1953-61 - are well represented.
Holdings of Football News, a tabloid newspaper published weekly during the football season since 1939. Football News was originally subtitled "The American Collegiate Sports Weekly," though it never covered anything but football and from its inception included at least passing mention of the pros. The subtitle was eliminated in the late'fifties as pro coverage increased.
Holdings of What's What in Football (1937-41), an early seasonal weekly with little commentary but quite comprehensive team ratings, schedules, and scores. Includes coverage of National Football League teams.
Yearbooks and Media Guides
A collection of over 5000 college football team media guides, 1940's to date. These range in format from mimeographed fact sheets to lavish trade paperbacks, depending on the size of the school's football program and the date of production. In addition to the usual treatments of the preceding and upcoming seasons, the more recent guides often include a sizable section on the school's football history. Also, a small collection of some 200 college fall sports media guides; these typically emphasize football (and generally function as the publishing school's football media guide), but also contain information on other traditional fall sports.
Small collections of college football conference media guides and college bowl game media guides. Bowl game guides published by either of the participating schools are listed with the team guides, above.
A collection of more than 1,000 professional football team media guides, 1944 to 2016, representing clubs in the National Football League, the American Football League, and the All-American Football Conference. Also, a small group of NFL pre-season prospectuses and AFL pre-season prospectuses, mostly c1970.
A collection of approximately 17,000 college football game programs, dating from the 19th century to 1969. Emphasis is on the more prominent football-playing schools, but hundreds of four-year colleges from all parts of the United States are represented. Holdings are strongest for West Coast schools, and for the years 1935-1969. Finding aids are available for programs issued prior to 1940, for programs issued from 1940 to 1949, for programs issued from 1950 to 1959, and for programs issued from 1960 to 1969.
A collection of over 500 college football bowl game programs. More than 160 of these are from the Rose, Orange, Cotton, and Sugar Bowls; the rest are from a variety of over eighty different bowl games. Also, a related collection of 59 programs from various college all-star charity games.
A collection of around 3500 professional football game programs, mostly 1930s to 1970s. The majority of these derive from the National Football League; a finding aid is currently available for all NFL programs issued prior to 1970. Also represented in the collection are programs from the All-American Football Conference (1946-1949) and the American Football League (1960-1969). Related holdings include 68 NFL, AAFC, and AFL playoff and championship game programs, and 28 programs from NFL and AFL all-star games.
A collection of around 300 programs from the Canadian Football League and its predecessors, the IRFU and the WIFU, dating from 1954 to 1970. Also, programs of fourteen Grey Cup games.
A group of notebooks compiled by college football coach Reginald W. P. ("Reggie") Brown (1876-1961). Five notebooks (dating to 1904, 1905 (2), 1911, and 1914) are from Brown's years as an assistant at Harvard (1902-16); one (1928) comes from the four years he spent as head coach at Boston University (1926-29). The 1904 and 1905 notebooks chronicle the events of those Harvard seasons through newspaper clippings, practice and game notes, play diagrams and commentary, and game charts, with particular attention to the '05 Penn and '04 and '05 Yale games. The 1911 and 1914 notebooks contain scouting reports on Harvard opponents, while the 1928 notebook is a collection of administrative documents on many aspects of the B.U. season, especially player personnel.
A collection of scrapbooks on Edward H. ("Ted") Coy (1888-1935), two-time consensus All-American fullback and captain of the 1909 Yale squad that went undefeated, untied, and unscored upon. Two scrapbooks contain materials (c. 1902-06) from Coy's years at The Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, CT; included are photographs, correspondence, school records, and ephemera deriving from Coy's athletic, academic, and social activities at Hotchkiss. A third scrapbook covers the 1909 football season at Yale, mostly through clippings, while a fourth contains materials pertaining to Coy's 1928 marriage to Lottie Bruhn.
A scrapbook of materials on the Princeton University athletic career of John R. DeWitt (1881-1930), a two-time consensus All-American at guard (1902 and 1903) and member of the CFF College Football Hall of Fame. Included are clipped newspaper and magazine articles and photographs and various personal ephemera, all dating from 1902-04. Materials are chronologically arranged, and cover the 1902 and 1903 football seasons and the 1903 and 1904 seasons in track and field. (83 leaves, with materials r. and v.; 13.5 x 11 inches).
A collection of 51 scrapbooks, each 10.5 x 15 inches, on college and professional football in the San Francisco Bay area, c. 1946-52. The scrapbooks consist mostly of clippings from local newspapers; detailed coverage is provided of football at California, Stanford, Santa Clara, USF, San Jose, and, especially, St. Mary's College. Coverage also includes the San Francisco 49ers of the AAFC and NFL.
A collection of 23 scrapbooks in loose-leaf binders on college and professional football, 1946-57. The greater part of the material consists of newspaper clippings, but magazine articles, programs, and game charts are also included. Coverage is national in scope, though there is some emphasis on pro and college teams from California and on Notre Dame.
A collection of 5 scrapbooks, each 12 x 14.5 inches, on college and professional football, 1941-46. Subjects treated include the annual Chicago Tribune All-Star Charity Games (which are dealt with intensively), the NFL Chicago Bears, and college bowl games. Many of the clipped articles and photographs that make up the scrapbooks derive from the Chicago Tribune.
A collection of general interest magazines containing articles announcing college All-America football teams, 1896-1962. Included are most of Walter Camp's and (subsequently) Grantland Rice's articles for Collier's. The contents of all magazines are complete.
A collection of twelve autographed footballs dating from 1965 to 1980, each signed by the members of a different Kodak All-America Team. Each ball contains 21-24 signatures.