A Collection That Runs Deep and Long
The letters and documents described in this article reside in my unofficial Redskins Museum, which covers more than half of the 4,000-square foot home that I share with my wife and co-author, Valerie Grissom. As a Washington native, I was inspired to establish the museum by a deep passion for the Redskins starting with Vince Lombardi's 1969 squad and snowballing through George Allen's lovable Over the Hill Gang. The museum is, to the best of my knowledge, the largest collection of vintage Redskins memorabilia.
In addition to the letters, there is a vast array of other historic Redskins items:
- A 1983 NFC championship ring, and 1937 and 1942 championship gold fobs (the precursor to the Super Bowl ring).
- More than 1,000 Redskins programs, including one from the team's first victory as the Boston Braves in 1932.
- More than 50 team-signed footballs, including the 1937 and 1942 NFL championship teams, all five Super Bowl teams and Vince Lombardi's 1969 Redskins.
- Hundreds of game-used jerseys, including from 1950s all-pro lineman Dick Stanfel, and Hall of Famers Sonny Jurgensen, Charley Taylor, John Riggins, Art Monk and Darrell Green.
- A grandstand consisting of four seats from each of the three stadiums in which the Redskins have played in Washington.
- A life-size reproduction of five offensive players from Super Bowl XVII.
- Former owner Jack Kent Cooke's signature plaid fedora.
- Vince Lombardi's 1969 sideline cleats.
- Former coach Joe Gibbs's 1980s headset.
- Eight mannequins dressed in Redskins cheerleader uniforms, going back to the Pocahontas outfit from the 1960s.
- Game-used helmets dating from the 1940s, 100 pennants, rare bobbleheads and figurines, and fan-compiled scrapbooks dating to 1942. -- S.Q.
-- Samu Qureshi