Back in the dinosaur days of organized football, the college game outranked the pros. Though it may be hard for modern day fans to believe, a century ago teams from the Ivy League were usually at the top of the heap. A pair of antique relics from the Brown University Bears team surface here, with:
1916 5x7 Brown Bears team photo featuring Hall of Famer Fritz Pollard. The Bears went 8-1 that year, with six shutouts to the team's credit, to trail only undefeated Army and Pittsburgh among the many eastern independent teams of the day. Pollard is of major historic significance, as he was the NFL's first African-American head coach and one of the league's first two African-American players in 1920. He was also the first African-American player for Brown and the first African-American player to be named an All-American. A couple of written notations are located on the field area at top without affecting the player images, and considerable signs of age-appropriate wear are noted, however this antique photo remains a pleasing (GD) example, with abundant gloss.
1922 Brown Bears 10kt gold football charm commemorating the team's late season 3-0 victory over rival Ivy League school Harvard. The team names and the score appear in red lettering on the front and the back is engraved with "B.J. Staff, Coach, 1922", indicating this charm was presented to a member of the coaching staff, during another triumphant season that saw the Bears rack up a 6-2-1 record. Belying its considerable age, this handsome keepsake presents in (NM) condition.