Consider your short-term and long-term availability to find the right online history degree for your schedule. For a clear sense of how education can fit into your life, take inventory of your professional and personal obligations.
If you work full time or have other responsibilities, programs with night courses, weekend classes or part-time enrollment may offer the best option. Busier students can prioritize programs offering asynchronous online learning, which allows learners to complete assignments without set login times.
Zoom out to consider how quickly you want to earn a degree and enter the workforce. You can typically earn a bachelor’s degree in four years of full-time enrollment, though accelerated programs offer shorter degree timelines if you want to graduate and start working faster. Keep in mind, however, that accelerated programs tend to be more intensive and may not allow time to keep a job while studying.
Accredited schools meet rigorous standards set by independent agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Institutions and programs voluntarily undergo assessment for the validity of their resources, educational offerings and student outcomes.
Accreditation occurs at both institutional and programmatic levels. Institutional accreditation applies to entire schools; this status is key for students to qualify for federal financial aid and transfer credits to other institutions. In some cases, professionals need degrees from accredited institutions to qualify for certifications and land employment after graduation.
Within schools, programs and departments may receive programmatic accreditation. Though there is no programmatic accreditor for history programs, students in specific subsets of history, such as art history, can look for programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.
Finding the right online history degree requires you to take stock of your long-term goals. If you plan to work in academia as a researcher or professor, seek schools that feature graduate degrees in relevant areas. Universities often provide smoother graduate admissions to undergraduate alums, so you might apply to schools with bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs that align with your academic and career goals.
However, if you plan to enter the workforce after earning a bachelor’s degree, consider prioritizing schools with internship partners and large alumni networks. Connecting with peers, instructors and employers while still in school can help get your foot in the door of your desired industry after graduation.
C.S. Lewis wrote, "History is a story written by the finger of God." But can we spot God's fingerprints?
Christian historians who answer "yes" fit broadly under the heading "providentialist." Those who aren't so sure frequently wear the label "ordinary." This is far from the only issue being debated in Christian historical circles, but it is a flashpoint. Christian History wanted to see what light the sparks from this debate might shed on the church's historical tradition—from Eusebius to the present.
First, we spoke with George Marsden, Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame. He works primarily as an ordinary historian, playing by the rules prescribed by the mainstream academy.
Next, we spoke with John Woodbridge, research professor of church history and the history of Christian thought at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, and a corresponding editor of Christianity Today. A providentialist, he believes that Christian historians should question scholarly conventions and at least try to identify God's work in history. Welcome to the discussion.
Christian History: How does a Christian scholar approach history differently than a non-Christian? Will a Christian historian's convictions be apparent to the reader?
George Marsden: You can be either explicit or implicit about it. The subjects you choose, the questions you ask about them, interpretive theories that you adopt, your evaluative standards, and so forth may all be shaped by your Christianity, but you might or might not say that in any explicit way.
When Herbert Butterfield wrote about the scientific revolution, to my knowledge he didn't say, "I'm doing this as a Christian historian." The kinds of questions he asks, however, are informed by, among other things, his Christian perspective.
Your faith isn't the only thing that shapes your work. You're trying to uncover the facts of what happened, and many of your perspectives will be shared by other observers. As I am shaped by being a Christian, I am also shaped by being a white American male of a certain era and social class and certain political opinions. Those sorts of things shape my approach to history and make my history, in many respects, like history written by other people who share those traits and moral standards.
When you're dealing with matters of fact, your interpretive perspective might not show through. But in other respects, it can make a big difference.
For instance, when I wrote about the history of religion in American universities, I was asking the question, Why did religion, which once had such a prominent place in American universities, lose that place? That question wasn't asked in that way very often before, because most historians just saw the shift as an inevitable part of progress—they assumed, "of course religious sectarianism would wither away as more professional sensibilities prevailed." But as a Christian, I thought it was a problem.
When you're applying specifically Christian sensibilities to a topic, and you know some people might not share those sensibilities, what do you do?
It depends on the audience. If I'm writing primarily for the church, or Christian History, then I can take certain points of view for granted. But if I'm writing for a university press and trying to address a wide audience, then I'm constantly thinking, Here are my several audiences. What do they need to know? What do they care about? How can I present what I'm doing so they'll understand it?
To the secularist I'm trying to say, "Take the religious side seriously." To religious people, I'm often trying to say, "Even great religious thinkers have their flaws."
I typically try to identify my own perspective. I've written in most of my books, "This is my perspective and you should know about it, and you can discount it if you care to. But I'm not pretending to write as a neutral observer."
One way to address several audiences is to be critical as well as sympathetic of one's own tradition. I see the calling of a Christian historian, with respect to serving the church, as trying to help Christians see how the culture has shaped their understanding of the Christian heritage. And that inevitably involves some criticism of things that Christians may have taken for granted, or things that they take to be eternal truths but that the historian may expose as cultural creations.
If you do that honestly, I think it opens what you do to a more secular audience as well, because they appreciate that you're investigating a religious heritage and not just celebrating it.
Partisan history often turns people off because the writer is seen as completely uncritical of whatever group he represents and critical of everybody else. Christian historians, particularly, should be willing to see the flaws in their tradition.
We can overdo that, of course, and can write history in a way that undermines the beliefs of ordinary Christians. We have to balance criticism with the positive.
Are miracles a big sticking point for Christian historians who write for a broad audience?
Miracle stories raise some hard questions. You want to acknowledge that miracles can happen, but then, in particular cases, what if you think they didn't happen? What if you're writing about Jim and Tammy Bakker?
You ought to make some distinction between how you treat miracle stories that you find credible and those about which you find some evidence of deception. So I think it is appropriate to be critical of certain religious claims to miracles.
I can't articulate exactly what the rule should be, because it depends on whether you're writing about your own tradition or about somebody else's tradition. You might be respectful of another person's tradition because it would be indiscreet not to be. The general rule in the academy is not to criticize anyone's story. You talk about their experience and leave it at that.
Many of the historians discussed in this issue also were uncritical of miracle stories, though for completely different reasons. What does a modern historian make of figures like Eusebius and Bede?
We still can learn from that kind of history. It's a source concerning the faith of the church—the only source we have on some subjects.
If you have modern historical sensibilities, you might be suspicious of some of the claims made in the stories or realize that the stories are not complete records of what actually happened. Nonetheless, these are the best sources we have, and some of the material, such as martyr stories, can be very inspiring.
That said, there's a big difference between writing church history as a cleric, in the era before there were professional historians, and being a professional historian today who is a Christian.
If you're a professional historian, you're trying to analyze historical development in relationship to other observable things that happen in the culture. And that's not at all the enterprise of the traditional church historian.
When Jonathan Edwards was writing history, he presented it from the perspective of how God is acting in history. He was doing theological history, not professional history as we currently define it. Those are really different enterprises, but they're both good. Both could be done today.
At what point did "professional history" begin to affect the telling of Christian History?
I think maybe with Philip Schaff in the mid-1800s. At that point you're dealing with someone who has some critical sensibilities and is going to the sources, and who also believes that God is working through the history of the church. But he's not laying out a history in which God is the principal actor.
That's where you get the break from those who, when writing history, are talking about how God is acting. In the Bible, history is written from that perspective. Here are God's many works with the people of Israel, or Here's what God was doing in the church. Christian writers continued that approach up through Jonathan Edwards, in the eighteenth century.
But by the nineteenth century, you're getting historians who are looking at how people shape the church. They don't specify exactly how God may be acting in history, even though they allow that God does. Instead they're concentrating on how the church developed and what church leaders did.
So can a Christian scholar today responsibly say anything about God's hand in history?
In the epilogue of my book on the history of fundamentalism, I raise the question of recognizing God's actions. I quote Richard Lovelace, who said that writing Christian History is like talking about a football game in which half of the players are invisible. You know God is acting, but what you can write about is the human side of the story.
It seems to me that's a helpful sensibility to have. Modern historians have the tools to do some interesting things, identifying how the human actors behaved and what forces were shaping them, but we have to be more reticent about naming God's specific purposes.
Christian History: What does it mean to write Christian History?
John Woodbridge: Non-Christians often write about the history of Christians. But if you mean by "Christian History" work that is shaped by Christian perspectives, that is a different kind of enterprise.
Those of us who are historians and also Christians must face questions like this: Will we have different presuppositions and do our work differently than secular scholars? If theological beliefs are not appreciated in the larger academic community, do we play by all of its rules? Does our Christianity inform what we research and write in a significant way?
Some very fine Christian historians function well in the secular community by doing "ordinary" history—giving explanations that are essentially horizontal. These historians would say, at the same time, that by the choice of their subject matter they are bringing their theological views to bear, and that by being scholars of integrity and by telling the truth, they're also being Christian.
I can see legitimacy in that sort of work, as long as their ordinary history is "open." "Closed" ordinary history denies the work of God in history and leads to naturalism, but "open" ordinary history leaves room for the work of God in people's hearts. That's perfectly appropriate.
We face a dilemma. Around 1860, when the professionalization of the historical discipline began to take place in Europe and the United States, issues of God's providence, and the Incarnation as the center point of history, dropped out of most scholarly discourse.
If you were going to retain your status within the community of historians, you had to keep religious judgments out of your work. And so Christian historians have had to decide how to relate their deep, personal convictions to the present discussions.
What do secular historians, or Christian historians who choose to play by their rules, lack when it comes to writing about the church?
In molecular biology, Michael Behe talks about the "irreducible complexity" of nature—some cell functions require complex interactions that can't be explained by evolutionary, step-by-step development.
I believe there's an irreducible complexity of human experience. Many secular theories of explaining what you and I would think of as a work of God don't have enough power to explain human experience. Are economic theories sufficient to explain why people are willing to become martyrs? Can a study of socio-economic factors account for the First Great Awakening?
If we, as Christian historians, are unwilling to talk about God at work in history, it's very difficult for me to see in what way we are significantly different from secular historians. I think we need to question the prevailing naturalism of secular historians—the assumption that all things can be explained horizontally. If we accept that premise, then we're going to have real difficulty explaining the Incarnation. And we're not going to be especially helpful to Christian lay people listening in.
In the past, when historians have tried to move beyond the horizontal, they often have arrived at dubious conclusions. Eusebius is an example. How can finite humans write about the works of God?
Yes, the track record for this type of history is troubling. Biases of all kinds have entered in. But the bad illustrations are not a sufficient argument to suggest that Christian historians shouldn't enter into discussion once again, to try to work together with biblical scholars and with other Christian historians to reconsider the issue of identifying God's work in history.
Christian historians must know that the church's tradition has been to see God at work in history. We're biblically instructed to do so, and historians up to around 1860 did so! This new type of historiography, which limits everything to horizontal explanations, is a radical departure.
While appreciating advances in historical methodology, we can learn much from figures like Jonathan Edwards. In History of the Work of Redemption, Edwards says explicitly that God doesn't leave us without some sense of what he's doing in the world—we have criteria in Scripture for identifying God's work in history.
We, as evangelical historians, need to reconsider how we do business. If we end up in a historical agnosticism, in which we can never talk about God at work, then we're in a different world than the world of John Calvin or Martin Luther or John Wesley, who speak about God's providence as something that can be discerned, at least in some circumstances.
Calvin says something like this: ignorance of providence is the greatest of all miseries, and the knowledge of it is the highest happiness. Well, if we're Christian historians and we don't want to talk about God's providence, or we're not allowed to, and we leave people in ignorance about it, we're not being very helpful.
Can Christian historians in the mainstream academy be so bold in talking about providence?
I don't embrace the radical distinction that some of my colleagues make between public and private views. Christianity happens to be a public religion. You can't privatize it.
If I'm in a classroom at the University of Chicago, and someone asks, "What do you think history is?" I can't say, "Well, I don't know. Beats me." Christian historians throughout the centuries have said that Jesus Christ is at the center of history, and that history is going somewhere. Now, do I say that publicly? I think I have to, if asked.
In order to have the best witness possible, we want to be winsome and irenic, but we need to be forthright about what we believe. We need to offer careful documentation and sound reasoning, especially if we make the claim that God was specifically involved in a historical event. All kinds of irresponsible claims have been put forth in the past, and it's understandable that people are concerned about that. But that is not sufficient grounds to exclude talking about God in history.
We need careful reflection here. Like Bill Murray in What About Bob?—we're taking baby steps toward addressing these matters.
What is at stake for Christian scholarship in this area?
If young, Christian professors accept the premise that bringing the divine to bear on a discipline will destroy their credibility as scholars, then that becomes the end game for their working out of a Christian world view.
Christian colleges and other Christian academic ventures need to get Bible scholars, theologians, historians, psychologists, and others working together. If we don't start doing this, we could see the day when any work that references God will be disqualified as sectarian. The next generations will have a heavy burden because we did not question the naturalistic premises that undergird much contemporary scholarship.
Some historians are already beginning to ponder this. For too long, we have not been as explicit as we should have been about our Christian beliefs. And what would more explicitly Christian scholarship look like? I think it could be some of the finest scholarship around, because it could explain human experience better than purely materialist arguments can.
Copyright © 2001 by the author or Christianity Today/Christian History magazine. Click here for reprint information on Christian History.
Thomas DeChiaro is the Vice President of Information Technology and Chief Information Officer (CIO), responsible for shaping the University's information technology vision to support and extend the impact of Drexel's strategic initiatives.
DeChiaro came to Drexel in January 2016 with more than 20 years of strategic IT experience and leadership in both higher education and the private sector. As CIO at Western Connecticut State University, he was responsible for all technology supporting the university's two campuses, and he served on the CIO leadership team supporting Connecticut's Board of Regents for Higher Education.
Before beginning his career in higher education, DeChiaro was senior vice president of the commercial systems group for defense contractor DSCI, where he led the commercialization strategy for all technology disciplines. He was responsible for working across DSCI's global divisions in order to transform the typical Department of Defense culture into one focused on commercialization and multi-use technology, was involved with DSCI's government relations activities, and served as executive relationship manager to IBM, Microsoft, Boeing, HP, GE, L3 Communications and others. While responsible for DSCI's Research & Intellectual Property strategy and for raising capital, he was instrumental in raising $10 million dollars for DSCI Research and Development.
Prior to DSCI, DeChiaro managed the information strategy for IBM's Intellectual Property Licensing division and later served as executive program director for IBM Corporate Functions. He also chaired the Corporate Functions Investment Review Board and managed a $110 million operating budget. During his tenure, IBM recognized DeChiaro with an Outstanding Technical Achievement award.
Along with his strategic IT expertise, DeChiaro brings an entrepreneurial spirit to the role of CIO. He serves as a C-level executive advisor/screener for Astia, providing advice and counsel to Astia's network of angel investors and venture capital firms fueling the growth of innovative women-led ventures worldwide.
DeChiaro earned a bachelor of science degree in computer and information science from Brooklyn College and competed his MBA at Western Connecticut State University. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and holds several professional certificates from George Washington University.
From disaster preparedness to nanoscience to food security, Drexel's Department of History is embroiled in some of the most critical issues of our day.
In the Department of History at Drexel University, our students learn through experience — from full-time co-op positions in archives, museums and other sites, to conducting and presenting original research, to visiting sites of historical significance. The department has particular strengths in the History of Science, Technology and the Environment, and in Global History.
Historians are not traditional scientists; there are no experiments we conduct that can predict future events — we have no theories of evolution or universal gravitation to guide us. Instead, we have the historical record — this is our laboratory. Though we are often looking at events and people long past and dead, historians are often embroiled in the most heated political arguments of our day. This is especially true in a democracy, where the open discussion of history and shared values is necessary, and where this discussion constantly defines and redefines public policy and democratic practice. In other words, the practice of history is also the practice of democracy. Does this kind of learning, research and debate interest you? If so, you are in the right place.
Through Drexel's renowned cooperative education program, students embark on six-month periods of full-time employment, exploring their career options, strengthening their résumés and building a professional network in the process.
IEEE, an organization dedicated to advancing innovation and technological excellence for the benefit of humanity, is the world's largest technical professional society. It is designed to serve professionals involved in all aspects of the electrical, electronic, and computing fields and related areas of science and technology that underlie modern civilization.
IEEE's roots go back to 1884 when electricity began to become a major influence in society. There was one major established electrical industry, the telegraph, which since the 1840s had come to connect the world with a data communications system faster than the speed of transportation. The telephone and electric power and light industries had just gotten underway.
Native American peoples inhabited and visited the landscape encompassed within Wyoming for centuries prior to the founding of the University of Wyoming (UW) in 1887 and we would like to acknowledge the Arapaho, Cheyenne, Crow, Lakota, Shoshone, and Ute, on whose land we stand today.
Long committed to the history of the American West, the History Department at UW is uniquely positioned to situate this field in a global context. Drawing on expertise ranging from Europe, East and Central Asia, Africa, and the Americas, we strive to explore historical questions with thematic as well as comparative approaches. Our goal is to supply students a truly global perspective on history.
At the most basic level, history teaches how to assess evidence, to access conflicting interpretations, to arrive at convincing arguments, and to speak and write about these arguments to a wide variety of audiences. These skills make history one of the foremost majors that graduate and professional schools and employers seek when they admit graduate students or hire employees. Viewed from a practical perspective, a history degree provides lifelong skills that are in demand in fields ranging from teaching and law to government and business administration. History is a very useful degree.
History is a foundational discipline that blends the methodologies and perspective of the humanities and social sciences in order to engage with the history of human culture on a global scale. UW's History degree program emphasizes interdisciplinary teaching and research and provides course work, research experiences, and internships on both American and international topics. The History program offers a Bachelor of Arts degree major and minor, and a Master of Arts degree.
Who hasn’t heard someone say, “I just love history?” Maybe that person is you? History is a vibrant and fascinating study of people, events, and institutions in the past and, for many people, that’s reason enough to earn a history degree. But there are larger and more practical reasons to choose history as your major. Here are a few of those reasons that historian Peter Stearns complied for the American Historical Association:
In addition to the historical content obtained in your coursework, a degree in History also provides excellent training in rigorous analysis and research skills, and the oral and written skills necessary to achieve success in any top-flight professional career. Typical career paths for History graduates include work in museums and archives, national security agencies (the FBI, CIA, and NSA all love to recruit History B.A. students), and the Department of State. The History major is also excellent preparation for various professional schools, such as law and medicine, as well as post-graduate work in the humanities and social sciences. We pride ourselves on placing our graduates in highly competitive careers and post-graduate masters and doctoral programs.
The History Department Faculty has identified the specific objectives of its undergraduate curriculum. The following are the learning outcomes that each History major should learn. We are continuously and actively assessing our program to ensure that these learning outcomes are being met.
1. Students shall be able to demonstrate critical thinking skills by analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating historical information from multiple sources.
2. Students will develop the ability to distinguish between different culturally historical perspectives.
3. Students will produce well researched written work that engages with both primary sources and the secondary literature.
4. Students will develop an informed familiarity with multiple cultures.
5. Students will employ a full range of historical techniques and methods.
6. Students will develop an ability to convey verbally their historical knowledge.
7. Students will demonstrate their understanding of historical cause and effect along with their knowledge of the general chronology of human experience.
8. Students will develop an understanding of the concepts of historical theary and/or conceptual frameworks and be able to use these in their own studies.
The History Department offers two distinct graduate programs. Any field of study offered by the Department can be accommodated within either degree program.
The M.A. degree is designed to prepare the student for employment opportunities and PhD-level work. This degree program is also suitable for students interested in careers as community college instructors as well as for lifelong learners who seek formal advanced education.
Students who graduate with an M.A. in History will be able to:
1. Demonstrate an understanding of the theories and methodologies of the discipline of History.
2. Demonstrate a critical understanding of the historiography of their field of specialization.
3. Demonstrate some understanding of comparative and/or thematic methods, approaches, and theories.
4. Conduct original research based on primary sources and construct an argument based on that research.
5. Write graduate-level expository prose and orally present their ideas at an advanced level.
The M.A.T. degree is designed to enhance the teaching of history and related disciplines by secondary and middle school teachers. This is a non-thesis degree, designed to provide breadth of preparation rather than specialization. Applicants are expected to have already completed their certification and pedagogy courses.
Students who graduate with an M.A.T. in History will be able to:
1. Demonstrate the significance of historical subjects with reference to broader historical context, historiographic trends, or contemporary relevance.
2. Construct original historical arguments using a blend of primary and secondary source material.
3. Demonstrate a superior quality of writing both in terms of mechanics and in developing an argument effectively.
4. Convey a broad understanding of historical material suitable for teaching.
1869-1939 | 1940-1959 | 1960-1979 | 1980-1999 | 2000-present
Rutgers and Princeton played a college soccer football game, the first ever, November 6. The game used modified London Football Association rules. During the next seven years, rugby gained favor with the major eastern schools over soccer, and modern football began to develop from rugby.
At the Massasoit convention, the first rules for American football were written. Walter Camp, who would become known as the father of American football, first became involved with the game.
In an era in which football was a major attraction of local athletic clubs, an intense competition between two Pittsburgh-area clubs, the Allegheny Athletic Association (AAA) and the Pittsburgh Athletic Club (PAC), led to the making of the first professional football player. Former Yale All-America guard William (Pudge) Heffelfinger was paid $500 by the AAA to play in a game against the PAC, becoming the first person to be paid to play football, November 12. The AAA won the game 4-0 when Heffelfinger picked up a PAC fumble and ran 35 yards for a touchdown.
The Pittsburgh Athletic Club signed one of its players, probably halfback Grant Dibert, to the first known pro football contract, which covered all of the PAC's games for the year.
John Brallier became the first football player to openly turn pro, accepting $10 and expenses to play for the Latrobe YMCA against the Jeannette Athletic Club.
The Allegheny Athletic Association team fielded the first completely professional team for its abbreviated two-game season.
The Latrobe Athletic Association football team went entirely professional, becoming the first team to play a full season with only professionals.
A touchdown was changed from four points to five.
Chris O'Brien formed a neighborhood team, which played under the name the Morgan Athletic Club, on the south side of Chicago. The team later became known as the Normals, then the Racine (for a street in Chicago) Cardinals, the Chicago Cardinals, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Phoenix Cardinals, and, in 1994, the Arizona Cardinals. The team remains the oldest continuing operation in pro football.
William C. Temple took over the team payments for the Duquesne Country and Athletic Club, becoming the first known individual club owner.
Baseball's Philadelphia Athletics, managed by Connie Mack, and the Philadelphia Phillies formed professional football teams, joining the Pittsburgh Stars in the first attempt at a pro football league, named the National Football League. The Athletics won the first night football game ever played, 39-0 over Kanaweola AC at Elmira, New York, November 21.
All three teams claimed the pro championship for the year, but the league president, Dave Berry, named the Stars the champions. Pitcher Rube Waddell was with the Athletics, and pitcher Christy Mathewson a fullback for Pittsburgh.
The first World Series of pro football, actually a five-team tournament, was played among a team made up of players from both the Athletics and the Phillies, but simply named New York; the New York Knickerbockers; the Syracuse AC; the Warlow AC; and the Orange (New Jersey) AC at New York's original Madison Square Garden. New York and Syracuse played the first indoor football game before 3,000, December 28. Syracuse, with Glen (Pop) Warner at guard, won 6-0 and went on to win the tournament.
The Franklin (Pa.) Athletic Club won the second and last World Series of pro football over the Oreos AC of Asbury Park, New Jersey; the Watertown Red and Blacks; and the Orange AC.
Pro football was popularized in Ohio when the Massillon Tigers, a strong amateur team, hired four Pittsburgh pros to play in the season-ending game against Akron. At the same time, pro football declined in the Pittsburgh area, and the emphasis on the pro game moved west from Pennsylvania to Ohio.
A field goal was changed from five points to four.
Ohio had at least seven pro teams, with Massillon winning the Ohio Independent Championship, that is, the pro title. Talk surfaced about forming a state-wide league to end spiraling salaries brought about by constant bidding for players and to write universal rules for the game. The feeble attempt to start the league failed.
Halfback Charles Follis signed a contract with the Shelby (Ohio) AC, making him the first known black pro football player.
The Canton AC, later to become known as the Bulldogs, became a professional team. Massillon again won the Ohio League championship.
The forward pass was legalized. The first authenticated pass completion in a pro game came on October 27, when George (Peggy) Parratt of Massillon threw a completion to Dan (Bullet) Riley in a victory over a combined Benwood-Moundsville team.
Arch-rivals Canton and Massillon, the two best pro teams in America, played twice, with Canton winning the first game but Massillon winning the second and the Ohio League championship. A betting scandal and the financial disaster wrought upon the two clubs by paying huge salaries caused a temporary decline in interest in pro football in the two cities and, somewhat, throughout Ohio.
A field goal dropped from four points to three.
A touchdown was increased from five points to six.
Jack Cusack revived a strong pro team in Canton.
Jim Thorpe, a former football and track star at the Carlisle Indian School (Pa.) and a double gold medal winner at the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, played for the Pine Village Pros in Indiana.
Massillon again fielded a major team, reviving the old rivalry with Canton. Cusack signed Thorpe to play for Canton for $250 a game.
With Thorpe and former Carlisle teammate Pete Calac starring, Canton went 9-0-1, won the Ohio League championship, and was acclaimed the pro football champion.
Despite an upset by Massillon, Canton again won the Ohio League championship.
Canton again won the Ohio League championship, despite the team having been turned over from Cusack to Ralph Hay. Thorpe and Calac were joined in the backfield by Joe Guyon.
Earl (Curly) Lambeau and George Calhoun organized the Green Bay Packers. Lambeau's employer at the Indian Packing Company provided $500 for equipment and allowed the team to use the company field for practices. The Packers went 10-1.
Pro football was in a state of confusion due to three major problems: dramatically rising salaries; players continually jumping from one team to another following the highest offer; and the use of college players still enrolled in school. A league in which all the members would follow the same rules seemed the answer. An organizational meeting, at which the Akron Pros, Canton Bulldogs, Cleveland Indians, and Dayton Triangles were represented, was held at the Jordan and Hupmobile auto showroom in Canton, Ohio, August 20. This meeting resulted in the formation of the American Professional Football Conference.
A second organizational meeting was held in Canton, September 17. The teams were from four states-Akron, Canton, Cleveland, and Dayton from Ohio; the Hammond Pros and Muncie Flyers from Indiana; the Rochester Jeffersons from New York; and the Rock Island Independents, Decatur Staleys, and Racine Cardinals from Illinois. The name of the league was changed to the American Professional Football Association. Hoping to capitalize on his fame, the members elected Thorpe president; Stanley Cofall of Cleveland was elected vice president. A membership fee of $100 per team was charged to supply an appearance of respectability, but no team ever paid it. Scheduling was left up to the teams, and there were wide variations, both in the overall number of games played and in the number played against APFA member teams.
Four other teams-the Buffalo All-Americans, Chicago Tigers, Columbus Panhandles, and Detroit Heralds-joined the league sometime during the year. On September 26, the first game featuring an APFA team was played at Rock Island's Douglas Park. A crowd of 800 watched the Independents defeat the St. Paul Ideals 48-0. A week later, October 3, the first game matching two APFA teams was held. At Triangle Park, Dayton defeated Columbus 14-0, with Lou Partlow of Dayton scoring the first touchdown in a game between Association teams. The same day, Rock Island defeated Muncie 45-0.
By the beginning of December, most of the teams in the APFA had abandoned their hopes for a championship, and some of them, including the Chicago Tigers and the Detroit Heralds, had finished their seasons, disbanded, and had their franchises canceled by the Association. Four teams-Akron, Buffalo, Canton, and Decatur-still had championship as-pirations, but a series of late-season games among them left Akron as the only undefeated team in the Association. At one of these games, Akron sold tackle Bob Nash to Buffalo for $300 and five percent of the gate receipts-the first APFA player deal.
At the league meeting in Akron, April 30, the championship of the 1920 season was awarded to the Akron Pros. The APFA was reorganized, with Joe Carr of the Columbus Panhandles named president and Carl Storck of Dayton secretary-treasurer. Carr moved the Association's headquarters to Columbus, drafted a league constitution and by-laws, gave teams territorial rights, restricted player movements, developed membership criteria for the franchises, and issued standings for the first time, so that the APFA would have a clear champion.
The Association's membership increased to 22 teams, including the Green Bay Packers, who were awarded to John Clair of the Acme Packing Company.
Thorpe moved from Canton to the Cleveland Indians, but he was hurt early in the season and played very little.
A.E. Staley turned the Decatur Staleys over to player-coach George Halas, who moved the team to Cubs Park in Chicago. Staley paid Halas $5,000 to keep the name Staleys for one more year. Halas made halfback Ed (Dutch) Sternaman his partner.
Player-coach Fritz Pollard of the Akron Pros became the first black head coach.
The Staleys claimed the APFA championship with a 9-1-1 record, as did Buffalo at 9-1-2. Carr ruled in favor of the Staleys, giving Halas his first championship.
After admitting the use of players who had college eligibility remaining during the 1921 season, Clair and the Green Bay management withdrew from the APFA, January 28. Curly Lambeau promised to obey league rules and then used $50 of his own money to buy back the franchise. Bad weather and low attendance plagued the Packers, and Lambeau went broke, but local merchants arranged a $2,500 loan for the club. A public nonprofit corporation was set up to operate the team, with Lambeau as head coach and manager.
The American Professional Football Association changed its name to the National Football League, June 24. The Chicago Staleys became the Chicago Bears.
The NFL fielded 18 teams, including the new Oorang Indians of Marion, Ohio, an all-Indian team featuring Thorpe, Joe Guyon, and Pete Calac, and sponsored by the Oorang dog kennels. Canton, led by player-coach Guy Chamberlin and tackles Link Lyman and Wilbur (Pete) Henry, emerged as the league's first true powerhouse, going 10-0-2.
For the first time, all of the franchises considered to be part of the NFL fielded teams. Thorpe played his second and final season for the Oorang Indians. Against the Bears, Thorpe fumbled, and Halas picked up the ball and returned it 98 yards for a touchdown, a record that would last until 1972.
Canton had its second consecutive undefeated season, going 11-0-1 for the NFL title.
The league had 18 franchises, including new ones in Kansas City, Kenosha, and Frankford, a section of Philadelphia. League champion Canton, successful on the field but not at the box office, was purchased by the owner of the Cleveland franchise, who kept the Canton franchise inactive, while using the best players for his Cleveland team, which he renamed the Bulldogs. Cleveland won the title with a 7-1-1 record.
Five new franchises were admitted to the NFL-the New York Giants, who were awarded to Tim Mara and Billy Gibson for $500; the Detroit Panthers, featuring Jimmy Conzelman as owner, coach, and tailback; the Providence Steam Roller; a new Canton Bulldogs team; and the Pottsville Maroons, who had been perhaps the most successful independent pro team. The NFL established its first player limit, at 16 players.
Late in the season, the NFL made its greatest coup in gaining national recognition. Shortly after the University of Illinois season ended in November, All-America halfback Harold (Red) Grange signed a contract to play with the Chicago Bears. On Thanksgiving Day, a crowd of 36,000-the largest in pro football history-watched Grange and the Bears play the Chicago Cardinals to a scoreless tie at Wrigley Field. At the beginning of December, the Bears left on a barnstorming tour that saw them play eight games in 12 days, in St. Louis, Philadelphia, New York City, Washington, Boston, Pittsburgh, Detroit, and Chicago. A crowd of 73,000 watched the game against the Giants at the Polo Grounds, helping assure the future of the troubled NFL franchise in New York. The Bears then played nine more games in the South and West, including a game in Los Angeles, in which 75,000 fans watched them defeat the Los Angeles Tigers in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Pottsville and the Chicago Cardinals were the top contenders for the league title, with Pottsville winning a late-season meeting 21-7. Pottsville scheduled a game against a team of former Notre Dame players for Shibe Park in Philadelphia. Frankford lodged a protest not only because the game was in Frankford's protected territory, but because it was being played the same day as a Yellow Jackets home game. Carr gave three different notices forbidding Pottsville to play the game, but Pottsville played anyway, December 12. That day, Carr fined the club, suspended it from all rights and privileges (including the right to play for the NFL championship), and re-turned its franchise to the league. The Cardinals, who ended the season with the best record in the league, were named the 1925 champions.
Grange's manager, C.C. Pyle, told the Bears that Grange wouldn't play for them unless he was paid a five-figure salary and given one-third ownership of the team. The Bears refused. Pyle leased Yankee Stadium in New York City, then petitioned for an NFL franchise. After he was refused, he started the first American Football League. It lasted one season and included Grange's New York Yankees and eight other teams. The AFL champion Philadelphia Quakers played a December game against the New York Giants, seventh in the NFL, and the Giants won 31-0. At the end of the season, the AFL folded.
Halas pushed through a rule that prohibited any team from signing a player whose college class had not graduated.
The NFL grew to 22 teams, including the Duluth Eskimos, who signed All-America fullback Ernie Nevers of Stanford, giving the league a gate attraction to rival Grange. The 15-member Eskimos, dubbed the Iron Men of the North, played 29 exhibition and league games, 28 on the road, and Nevers played in all but 29 minutes of them.
Frankford edged the Bears for the championship, despite Halas having obtained John (Paddy) Driscoll from the Cardinals. On December 4, the Yellow Jackets scored in the final two minutes to defeat the Bears 7-6 and move ahead of them in the standings.
At a special meeting in Cleveland, April 23, Carr decided to secure the NFL's future by eliminating the financially weaker teams and consolidating the quality players onto a limited number of more successful teams. The new-look NFL dropped to 12 teams, and the center of gravity of the league left the Midwest, where the NFL had started, and began to emerge in the large cities of the East. One of the new teams was Grange's New York Yankees, but Grange suffered a knee injury and the Yankees finished in the middle of the pack. The NFL championship was won by the cross-town rival New York Giants, who posted 10 shutouts in 13 games.
Grange and Nevers both retired from pro football, and Duluth disbanded, as the NFL was reduced to only 10 teams. The Providence Steam Roller of Jimmy Conzelman and Pearce Johnson won the championship, playing in the Cycledrome, a 10,000-seat oval that had been built for bicycle races.
Chris O'Brien sold the Chicago Cardinals to David Jones, July 27.
The NFL added a fourth official, the field judge, July 28.
Grange and Nevers returned to the NFL. Nevers scored six rushing touchdowns and four extra points as the Cardinals beat Grange's Bears 40-6, November 28. The 40 points set a record that remains the NFL's oldest.
Providence became the first NFL team to host a game at night under floodlights, against the Cardinals, November 3.
The Packers added back Johnny (Blood) McNally, tackle Cal Hubbard, and guard Mike Michalske, and won their first NFL championship, edging the Giants, who featured quarterback Benny Friedman.
Dayton, the last of the NFL's original franchises, was purchased by William B. Dwyer and John C. Depler, moved to Brooklyn, and renamed the Dodgers. The Portsmouth, Ohio, Spartans entered the league.
The Packers edged the Giants for the title, but the most improved team was the Bears. Halas retired as a player and replaced himself as coach of the Bears with Ralph Jones, who refined the T-formation by introducing wide ends and a halfback in motion. Jones also introduced rookie All-America fullback-tackle Bronko Nagurski.
The Giants defeated a team of former Notre Dame players coached by Knute Rockne 22-0 before 55,000 at the Polo Grounds, December 14. The proceeds went to the New York Unemployment Fund to help those suffering because of the Great Depression, and the easy victory helped supply the NFL credibility with the press and the public.
The NFL decreased to 10 teams, and halfway through the season the Frankford franchise folded. Carr fined the Bears, Packers, and Portsmouth $1,000 each for using players whose college classes had not graduated.
The Packers won an unprecedented third consecutive title, beating out the Spartans, who were led by rookie backs Earl (Dutch) Clark and Glenn Presnell.
George Preston Marshall, Vincent Bendix, Jay O'Brien, and M. Dorland Doyle were awarded a franchise for Boston, July 9. Despite the presence of two rookies-halfback Cliff Battles and tackle Glen (Turk) Edwards - the new team, named the Braves, lost money and Marshall was left as the sole owner at the end of the year.
NFL membership dropped to eight teams, the lowest in history. Official statistics were kept for the first time. The Bears and the Spartans finished the season in the first-ever tie for first place. After the season finale, the league office arranged for an additional regular-season game to determine the league champion. The game was moved indoors to Chicago Stadium because of bitter cold and heavy snow. The arena allowed only an 80-yard field that came right to the walls. The goal posts were moved from the end lines to the goal lines and, for safety, inbounds lines or hashmarks where the ball would be put in play were drawn 10 yards from the walls that butted against the sidelines. The Bears won 9-0, December 18, scoring the winning touchdown on a two-yard pass from Nagurski to Grange. The Spartans claimed Nagurski's pass was thrown from less than five yards behind the line of scrimmage, violating the existing passing rule, but the play stood.
The NFL, which long had followed the rules of college football, made a number of significant changes from the college game for the first time and began to develop rules serving its needs and the style of play it preferred. The innovations from the 1932 championship game-inbounds line or hashmarks and goal posts on the goal lines-were adopted. Also the forward pass was legalized from anywhere behind the line of scrimmage, February 25.
Marshall and Halas pushed through a proposal that divided the NFL into two divisions, with the winners to meet in an annual championship game, July 8.
Three new franchises joined the league-the Pittsburgh Pirates of Art Rooney, the Philadelphia Eagles of Bert Bell and Lud Wray, and the Cincinnati Reds. The Staten Island Stapletons suspended operations for a year, but never returned to the league.
Halas bought out Sternaman, became sole owner of the Bears, and reinstated himself as head coach. Marshall changed the name of the Boston Braves to the Redskins. David Jones sold the Chicago Cardinals to Charles W. Bidwill.
In the first NFL Championship Game scheduled before the season, the Western Division champion Bears defeated the Eastern Division champion Giants 23-21 at Wrigley Field, December 17.
G.A. (Dick) Richards purchased the Portsmouth Spartans, moved them to Detroit, and renamed them the Lions.
Professional football gained new prestige when the Bears were matched against the best college football players in the first Chicago College All-Star Game, August 31. The game ended in a scoreless tie before 79,432 at Soldier Field.
The Cincinnati Reds lost their first eight games, then were suspended from the league for defaulting on payments. The St. Louis Gunners, an independent team, joined the NFL by buying the Cincinnati franchise and went 1-2 the last three weeks.
Rookie Beattie Feathers of the Bears became the NFL's first 1,000-yard rusher, gaining 1,004 on 101 carries. The Thanksgiving Day game between the Bears and the Lions became the first NFL game broadcast nationally, with Graham McNamee the announcer for NBC radio.
In the championship game, on an extremely cold and icy day at the Polo Grounds, the Giants trailed the Bears 13-3 in the third quarter before changing to basketball shoes for better footing. The Giants won 30-13 in what has come to be known as the Sneakers Game, December 9.
The player waiver rule was adopted, December 10.
The NFL adopted Bert Bell's proposal to hold an annual draft of college players, to begin in 1936, with teams selecting in an inverse order of finish, May 19. The inbounds line or hashmarks were moved nearer the center of the field, 15 yards from the sidelines.
All-America end Don Hutson of Alabama joined Green Bay. The Lions defeated the Giants 26-7 in the NFL Championship Game, December 15.
There were no franchise transactions for the first year since the formation of the NFL. It also was the first year in which all member teams played the same number of games.
The Eagles made University of Chicago halfback and Heisman Trophy winner Jay Berwanger the first player ever selected in the NFL draft, February 8. The Eagles traded his rights to the Bears, but Berwanger never played pro football. The first player selected to actually sign was the number-two pick, Riley Smith of Alabama, who was selected by Boston.
A rival league was formed, and it became the second to call itself the American Football League. The Boston Shamrocks were its champions.
Because of poor attendance, Marshall, the owner of the host team, moved the Championship Game from Boston to the Polo Grounds in New York. Green Bay defeated the Redskins 21-6, December 13.
Homer Marshman was granted a Cleveland franchise, named the Rams, February 12. Marshall moved the Redskins to Washington, D.C., February 13. The Redskins signed TCU All-America tailback Sammy Baugh, who led them to a 28-21 victory over the Bears in the NFL Championship Game, December 12.
The Los Angeles Bulldogs had an 8-0 record to win the AFL title, but then the 2-year-old league folded.
At the suggestion of Halas, Hugh (Shorty) Ray became a technical advisor on rules and officiating to the NFL. A new rule called for a 15-yard penalty for roughing the passer.
Rookie Byron (Whizzer) White of the Pittsburgh Pirates led the NFL in rushing. The Giants defeated the Packers 23-17 for the NFL title, December 11.
Marshall, Los Angeles Times sports editor Bill Henry, and promoter Tom Gallery established the Pro Bowl game between the NFL champion and a team of pro all-stars.
The New York Giants defeated the Pro All-Stars 13-10 in the first Pro Bowl, at Wrigley Field, Los Angeles, January 15.
Carr, NFL president since 1921, died in Columbus, May 20. Carl Storck was named acting president, May 25.
An NFL game was televised for the first time when NBC broadcast the Brooklyn Dodgers-Philadelphia Eagles game from Ebbets Field to the approximately 1,000 sets then in New York.
Green Bay defeated New York 27-0 in the NFL Championship Game, December 10 at Milwaukee. NFL attendance exceeded 1 million in a season for the first time, reaching 1,071,200.
If risk is like a lump of smoldering coal that may spark a fire at any moment, insurance is civilization's fire extinguisher. The main concept of insurance—that of spreading risk among many—is as old as human existence.
Whether it was hunting giant elk in a group to spread the risk of being the one gored to death or shipping cargo in several different caravans to avoid losing the whole shipment to a marauding tribe, people have always been wary of risk. Countries and their citizens need to spread risk among large numbers of people and move it to entities that can handle it. This is how insurance emerged.
The concept of insurance dates back to around 1750 B.C. with the Code of Hammurabi, which Babylonians carved into a stone monument and several clay tablets. The code describes a form of bottomry, whereby a ship’s cargo could be pledged in exchange for a loan. Repayment of the loan was contingent on a successful voyage, and the debtor did not have to repay the loan if the ship was lost at sea.
In the Middle Ages, most craftsmen were trained through the guild system. Apprentices spent their childhoods working for masters for little or no pay. Once they became masters themselves, they paid dues to the guild and trained their own apprentices.
The wealthier guilds had large coffers that acted as a type of insurance fund. If a master's practice burned down—a common occurrence in the largely wooden cities of medieval Europe—the guild would rebuild it using money from its own funds. If a master was robbed, the guild would cover their obligations until money started to flow in again. If a master was suddenly disabled or killed, the guild would support them or their surviving family.
This safety net encouraged more people to leave farming to take up trades. As a result, the amount of goods available for trade increased, as did the range of goods and services. The basic style of insurance used by guilds is still around today in the form of group coverage.
In the late 1600s, shipping was just beginning between the New World and the Old, as colonies were being established and exotic goods were ferried back. The practice of underwriting emerged in the same London coffeehouses that operated as the unofficial stock exchange for the British Empire. A coffeehouse owned by Edward Lloyd, later of Lloyd's of London, was the primary meeting place for merchants, ship owners, and others seeking insurance.
A basic system for funding voyages to the New World was established. In the first stage, merchants and companies would seek funding from the venture capitalists of the day. They, in turn, would help find people who wanted to be colonists, usually those from the more desperate areas of London, and would purchase provisions for the voyage.
In exchange, the venture capitalists were guaranteed some of the returns from the goods the colonists would produce or find in the Americas. It was widely believed you couldn't take two left turns in America without finding a deposit of gold or other precious metals. When it turned out this wasn't exactly true, venture capitalists still funded voyages for a share of the new bumper crop: tobacco.
After a voyage was secured by venture capitalists, the merchants and ship owners went to Lloyd's to hand over a copy of the ship's cargo manifest so the investors and underwriters who gathered there could read it.
Those who were interested in taking on the risk signed at the bottom of the manifest beneath the figure indicating the share of the cargo for which they were taking responsibility (hence, underwriting). In this way, a single voyage would have multiple underwriters, who tried to spread their own risk by taking shares in several different voyages.
By 1654, Blaise Pascal, the Frenchman who gave us the first calculator, and his countryman Pierre de Fermat, discovered a way to express probabilities and better understand levels of risk. That breakthrough began to formalize the practice of underwriting and made insurance more affordable.
In 1666, the Great Fire of London destroyed around 13,200 homes. London was still recovering from the plague that had begun to ravage it a year earlier and an estimated 100,000 survivors were left homeless. The following year, property developer Nicholas Barbon began selling fire insurance as a personal business, which was then established as a joint-stock company, the Fire Office, in 1680.
Life insurance began to emerge in the 16th and 17th centuries in England, France, and Holland. The first known life insurance policy in England was issued in 1583. But, lacking the tools to properly assess the risk involved, many of the groups that offered insurance ultimately failed.
That started to change in 1693, when astronomer and mathematician Edmund Halley, best known today as the namesake of Halley's Comet, studied birth and death records in the city of Breslau for the purposes of calculating the price of life annuities. This gave rise to the use of mortality tables in the insurance industry.
Insurance companies thrived in Europe, especially after the Industrial Revolution. Across the Atlantic, in America, the story was very different. Colonists' lives were fraught with dangers that no insurance company would touch. For example, starvation and related diseases killed almost three out of every four colonists in the Jamestown settlement between 1609 and 1610, a bleak period that came to be known as "The Starving Time."
Ultimately, it took more than 100 years for insurance to establish itself in America. When it finally did, starting around the 1750s, it brought the maturity in both practice and policies that developed during the same period of time in Europe.
Insurance has had a long history and its starting point can trace back to different times depending on the type of insurance. It has its origins in the Babylonian empire, Medieval guilds, the Great Fire of London, and maritime insurance.
Some of the oldest forms of insurance are considered to be the bottomry contracts of merchants in Babylon around 3,000 to 4,000 BCE. These contracts stipulated that the loans that merchants took out for shipments would not need to be paid if the shipment was lost at sea.
The oldest insurance company in the world is considered to be Hamburger Feuerkasse, which was founded in 1676. Its first policies provided fire insurance within the the city walls of Hamburg and reimbursed owners the market value of their buildings up to 15,000 marks, with a 25% deductible.
The history of insurance is long and detailed, and it has involved significantly over time. Though it can be expensive, insurance has prevented people and businesses from suffering financial loss and it has financially protected people throughout time.
The history of Las Vegas is the ultimate American rags-to-riches story, filled with unusual heroes and foes. This 103-year-old saga follows the city through its incredible ups and downs, and highlights how and where some of the U.S.’s most monumental moments occurred. The largest American city founded in the 20th century took shape as a railroad watering hole before turning into the "Gateway to the Hoover Dam." From there the town was known by its seedy mob label as “Sin City,” before finally transforming into the corporately-financed adult playground called the "Entertainment Capital of the World." Continue...