Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Football

Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Football

Postby RyanChristiansen » Fri Oct 02, 2020 9:44 am

Somebody in a different forum suggested to me that Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Football by Robert W. Peterson is the definitive text for that era. Do you disagree? If so, what books do you feel rival this book in enlightening us about the early days? I have Pigskin on my shelf, but where does it belong in the hierarchy of definitive texts?
"Five seconds to go... A field goal could win it. Up in the air! Going deep! Tipped! Caught! Touchdown! The Vikings! They win it! Time has run out!" - Vikings 28, Browns 23, December 14, 1980, Metropolitan Stadium
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Re: Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Footba

Postby RichardBak » Fri Oct 02, 2020 10:22 am

I can't find my copy of Pigskin---it's packed away in a box somewhere---but I know I referred to it several times over the years in my own writings. I recall that he interviewed several old-timers, guys like Vince Banonis. I also remember being disappointed by the handful of small, grainy photos used to illustrate it. Gave the book a kind of cheap look though the text was solid.

Peterson was a former New York newspaperman who wrote an early book on Negro leagues baseball, Only the Ball was White. That book was his first; Pigskin was his last. I don't rank books, but I would definitely put both on my should-read list for anyone researching either subject.
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Re: Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Footba

Postby RyanChristiansen » Fri Oct 02, 2020 10:48 am

RichardBak wrote:Peterson was a former New York newspaperman who wrote an early book on Negro leagues baseball, Only the Ball was White.


I read that book many years ago and it solidified my interest in and appreciation for negro league baseball. I lost it somewhere along the way. I should pick up another copy.
"Five seconds to go... A field goal could win it. Up in the air! Going deep! Tipped! Caught! Touchdown! The Vikings! They win it! Time has run out!" - Vikings 28, Browns 23, December 14, 1980, Metropolitan Stadium
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Re: Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Footba

Postby TanksAndSpartans » Thu Nov 12, 2020 1:40 pm

I think Pigskin is a top 5 football book. That being said, its a primer - it covers a decent number of years - around 70 in around 200 pages. I recommend it really highly as a starting point to anyone interested in pro football history. It also has a solid bibliography that I've used to dig deeper into some of the subjects on my own.
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Re: Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Footba

Postby JWL » Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:04 am

I rate it high atop my chart of great football books. The book does a great job documenting the early years of pro football.
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Re: Opinions(?) about Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Footba

Postby JeffreyMiller » Sat Jan 02, 2021 12:54 am

TanksAndSpartans wrote:I think Pigskin is a top 5 football book. That being said, its a primer - it covers a decent number of years - around 70 in around 200 pages. I recommend it really highly as a starting point to anyone interested in pro football history. It also has a solid bibliography that I've used to dig deeper into some of the subjects on my own.


I would agree with this description. I enjoyed this book very much and it led me to delve heavier into reading about pro football history. It's not as comprehensive as some other books, but it's well written and highly enjoyable.
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