The First Football Team in Monroe?

The Times (Shreveport, LA) 13 Dec 1895

The Athletic Club of Monroe has organized a football team, and negotiations have been opened with Shreveport for a game during Christmas week.

The Times (Shreveport, LA) 26 Dec 1895

The Foot Ball Game.

This event will be pulled off to-day at the baseball park at 3 o’clock. It will be the first public game ever played in this city, and as a novelty, no doubt the mass of the constituency will be out to see it. those of us who are thinking of tackling something for the ensuing year may go out and get en rapport with the latest thing in the way of a tackle. Business “tackles” on the football plan will all be square, manly grapples from which a “touch-down” ought to materialize.

The Times (Shreveport, LA) 27 Dec 1895

“Razzle dazzle! Humpty sazzle! Sis, boom, bah! Let ‘er go Shreveport! Rah! Rah! Rah!” is what they say they said.
The other fellow said: “Hobble, gobble, Razzle dazzle! Sis, boom, rah! Monroe, Monroe! Rah! Rah! Rah!” and “perhaps that was what they were fighting about,” said a spectator. “I wouldn’t let no man with a head like a feather duster struck by lighting call me that.”

The same issue has a very long article describing the game and each play. It also named the players by last name and positions. A previous day’s article about their arrival gave their first names, so I will add them. The Monroe team: Right end: Marion Dowden. Right tackle: J.C. Conner. Right guard: Crowley. Right center: Phillip Chauvin. Left guard: Walter Mangham. Left tackle: Joseph Petagna. Left end: L.A. Sholars. Quarter back: Lewis (Probably a Louis Williams in the previous article). Right half-back: Morrissy. Left half-back: Mullins. Full back: Nicholson. Substitute: Burgen. The previous article mentions the Monroe team’s arrival and check in at the hotel. It gives the team names as follows: Joseph Petagna, L.A. Scholars, Robert Burgess, N.R. Gordon, Phillip Chauvin, P.W. Hilton, Henry McCormick, Louis Williams, Walter Mangham, Marion Dowden, Eugene Courtney and Hugh Brocey. Capt. J.C. Conner’s name was mentioned and gave a mention of it being “his team” so it makes me wonder if he served as a coach. Many of the names were not mentioned in the later article.

Monroe’s team colors were blue and gold. Conner made the only touchdown for Monroe, ending in a score of 16 to 4 (touchdowns were 4 points, field goals 2).

It seems the sport caught on with the younger kids, because the next year, the City and Parish High school teams played and the City won 4-1.

Louisiana and other southern states newspapers can be accessed through our webpage databases page. Go to our website at http://www.oplib.org and use your library card to log into newspapers.com or come by any branch!

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