Western Pennsylvania Pro Football Circuit 1896


Western Pennsylvania Pro Circuit
Allegheny AA22001.000
Greensburg AA Greenies8611.857
Latrobe AC 9630.667
Duquesne Country & AC Red & Black10631.667
Pittsburgh AC East Enders10253.286
University and College Teams
Washington & Jefferson College Presidents32011.000
West Virginia U Mountaineers5122.333
Western Pennsylvania Pro Football Circuit 1896 [References: Compiled from Results in 1]


DateHome TeamAwayy Team
October 1896
10.1896Pittsburgh AC East Enders WWestern U of PennsyvaniaL
10.1896Pittsburgh AC East EndersWEmerald ACL
10.1896Washington & Jefferson Presidents0Pittsburgh AC East Enders0
10.1896Latrobe ACWAltoona ACL
10.1896Latrobe AC4Greensburg AA Greenies18
Week 6
31.10.1896Greensburg AA Greenies10Latrobe AC0
31.10.1896Washington & Jefferson Presidents21Pittsburgh AC East Enders0
Week 7
06.11.1896Duquesne C & AC Red & Black12Pittsburgh AC East Enders6
10.11.1896Allegheny AA12Duquesne C & AC Red & Black0
11.11.1896Allegheny AA18Pittsburgh AC East Enders0
Week 8
14.11.1896Duquesne C & AC Red & Black18Greensburg AA Geenies4
Week 9
21.11.1896Pittsburgh AC East Enders0Greensburg AA Greenies0
26.11.1896Washington & Jefferson Presidents4Duquesne C & AC Red & Black0
Week 10
28.11.1896Greensburg AA Greenies10Latrobe AC0
West Virgina U Schedule
1896Latrobe ACLWest Virginia U MountaineersW
1896Latrobe ACLWest Virginia U MountaineersW
1896Pittsburgh AC East EndersTWest Virginia U MountaineersT
1896Duquesne C & AC Red & BlackTWest Virginia U MountaineersT
1896Duquesne C & AC Red & BlackWWest Virginia U MountaineersL
Western Pennsylvania Pro Football Circuit 1896 [References: 1]


The Western Pennsylvania Pro Football Circuit (American Football) of 1896 was a three-way duel between Greensburg AA Greenies, Latrobe AC and Duquesne Country & Athletic Club Red & Black. While there were other teams playing in the circuit, and the Allegheny AA made a brief appearance after being banned in 1895 by the Amateur Athletic Union for paying players, the AAA only made two appearances, back to back in midweek in November, and the other teams were no match for the top three.

The Washington & Jefferson Presidents and West Virginia University Mountaineersalso played a significant part of their schedule in the Pittsburgh and surrounding areas, with WVU picking up one win from its two games with Latrobe AC and a tie from its two with Duquesne C&AC. W&J managed to go undefeated in its games with the Athletic Clubs, tying with Pittsburgh AC and gaining a win against both DC & AC and PAC.

The Allegheny Athletic Club, which also featured Cycling and Athletics teams, which resigned from the AAA over the Football scandal, the entire club being banned by the AAU, leaving the Football players who made history by pooling their money to play as the first openly-pro Football team in the country. Under “Sport” Donnelly (an Irish name) they paid for the best players out of Chicago, as well as enticing the first unofficial pro, “Pudge” Heeffelfinger, back from the Eastern Colleges, as they scheduled two matches back to back on 10th and 11th of October against two of the top Western Pennsylvania “local” teams, Duquesne C&AC (winning 12-0) and Pittsburgh AC (winning 18-0). after this they all went back to Chicago or the East.

Pittsburgh AC were a shadow of their former selves, apparently out drinking the night before matches, which showed in their final record of 2 Wins 5 Losses and 3 Ties. It was down to a series of games between Greensburg AA, Latrobe AC and Duquesne C&AC for the right to call themselves Western Pennsylvania or “Pro” Champions. Greensburg AA had lost to Duquesne C&AC on 21st November (18-4) but defeated Latrobe AC twice, the second in the last weekend of November by a score of 10-0. However, the DC & AC had lost two late season games against Allegheny AA and then on Thanksgiving to Washington & Jefferson.

The Final Record of the “Big Four” was Greensburg AA Greenies 6-1-1, Latrobe AC 6-3-0, Duquesne C&AC Red & Black 6-3-1 and Pittsburgh AC East Enders 2-5-3. With Allegheny AA fielding players from the Chicago Area, and only scheduling two matches, the victory over Greensburg on 21st November was enough to give them bragging rights among the “Big 4” but the loss to William & Jefferson the following Thanksgiving meant they were only second best among “local” Western Pennsylvania teams, and Greensburg AA had only the one loss, so it was inconclusive as to which team could claim the title.



[1] Professional Football Researchers Association (2011) “Last Hurrah in Allegheny: The 3A’s Exit in a Blaze of Glory: 1896” The Early History of Professional Football. pg. 123-129. PFRA Publications. Connecticut.


Thanks to Claire Daly, Rebecca Martin, Deirdre and Jason

About this document

Researched, compiled and written by Enda Mulcahy for the

Eirball | Irish North American and World Sports Archive

Last Updated: 10 September 2020

(c) Copyright Enda Mulcahy and Eirball 2020

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