I am writing this post after having watched the following video.
This video is of particular interest to me as I will be attending next week’s Professional Football Researchers Association Convention in Canton, Ohio at the Pro Football Hall of Fame and will have the opportunity to personally meet John Steffenhagen.
In addition to being the Founder and Curator of this museum, I am also a current member of the PFRA after having been a member for several years previously (1998 – 2003) and as a current member, I have the opportunity to be an editor for a forthcoming book written by PFRA Members regarding the history of the 1964 Buffalo Bills. (to be published sometime in 2024).
Obviously what this collection represents is a very valuable part of the history of the early beginnings of professional football in America and the beginnings of the National Football League from an original “forgotten” founder of the NFL.
At this point, you may be asking yourself, “What does this have to do with “electric football” and the National ELECTRIC FOOTBALL Game Museum??” Well, that is a hard question to answer, but I will attempt to answer it as best I can.
What concerns me the most and why I decided to start the NEFGM, is the old saying “what may be considered one man’s junk is another man’s treasure”.
In my years of collecting electric football games and teams, what intrigues me the most and what I consider to be more valuable “artifacts” are the pieces of paper that I often find in games. Sometimes it it just an order form with some kids choices of teams to order from Tudor or the packing slips from orders, pieces of paper with team rosters and notes from games that were played between siblings and neighborhood friends. These are the things that tell the true history of electric football and are the things that get lost or thrown away most often.
That is why I am constantly searching for newspaper clippings and magazine articles and asking people for copies of their league records. Yes the actual game boards and teams are valuable as they are the physical representations of the game and hobby, but they are the things that only stir the memories of the many people who grew up with the game, still play the game and keep the game alive!!
That is what makes up the history of Electric Football!!