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Forum Home > Discoveries & Corrections > Corrected Data, Section 2

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

 

I am starting a new section, so that anyone who may be interested in this data will not have to page through the first 30 players to get to the new listings.

April 25, 2015 at 9:49 AM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #11

 

31.  HAROLD D ZERBY (ZERBE) - 1926 Canton - He was born 09/21/01 in Ohio, and died 10/12/63 in Canton, Ohio.  His obit in the Massillon Evening Independent of 10/15/63 mentions him being a teammate of Jim Thorpe on the Bulldogs.

 

32.  THOMAS DWIGHT MURPHY - 1926 Milw - attended Duluth Cathedral HS, and U of Wisconsin-Superior.  He was born 06/21/01 iin Eau Claire, WI, and died 07/24/94 in Duluth, MN. Birth data obtained from correspondence with player while he was still alive, and death data from SSDI. Person who died in Tacoma iin 1986 is not the player.

 

33. JAMES 'JIM' SPENCER - 1928-29 Dayton - attended St. Louis HS in Honolulu, and U of Dayton.  He was born in Hawaii 11/03/01, and died in Honolulu on 03/06/61.  He was part of the Hawaiian group that played for U of Dayton, and then in the NFL. I obtained his birth date from a ship's passenger list in the 1923, when he was leaving Honolulu, along with Augie Cabrinha and Sam Hipa, 2 other future NFL players. (They were listed together on the passenger list, so there was no doubtt that this was the right Jim Spencer). Coincidentally, I found his name on another passenger list in 1929, leaving San Francisco for Honolulu with his Ohio-born wife and 2 small children. Death data came from Findagrave.com.  Person liisted on all websites who died in the Cleveland area in the 1970's is not the player.

 

Thank you.

April 25, 2015 at 10:10 AM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #12

 

34. ROBERT CLARENCE 'BOB' NORMAN - 1945 ChiC - attended Evanston (IL) HS - He was born 10/05/20 in Evanston, IL, and died 05/02/2010 in Northbrook, IL.  Newspaper articles from 1944 concerning the merged Card-Pitt team mentioned a Navy veteran from Evanston, IL, with a medical discharge, who was a rookie tackle, named Bob Norman.  Birth and death data, and playing record confirmed by daughter-in-law. Person who died in 1982, who is listed on all websites, lived and died in Marion, IL (more than 300 miles from Chicago), and seems to have had no connection at all to football.

 

35. THOMAS MARK 'TOM' COBB - 1926-31 KC, Cleve, Det, ChiC - attended Wagoner, OK, HS, St. John's U (NY). He was born 09/06/03 in Wagoner, OK, and died 11/03/70 in Cookson, OK.  He was a first cousin of Charles Corgan, who was a high school teammate, and also his teammate with KC in 1926. He is listed on the 1910 census as 'Native American'. The person who died in 1978 is not the player.

 

36. PAUL K. 'HAP' FRANK - 1930 Newark - attended Harrisburg Tech, Waynesburg College.  He was born 06/12/04 in Harrisburg, PA, and died there on 03/10/79.  He was a 3-sport athlete at Waynesburg, and became a prominent basketball coach and official.  Person who died in 1970 is not the player.

 

April 29, 2015 at 7:05 AM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #13

 

37.  There is a listing for a 1926 Hartford player named Ralph Nichols from Kansas State.  Everyone (including myself) had Ralph Dale Nichols, who had graduated from KSU and had died in 1980.This was the information I had received from the KSU Alumni Office.  Since he would have played his only pro year at the age of 33, it didn't seem logical, so I started digging further. In KSU yearbooks, Ralph Dale Nichols never played any sports, let alone football. I finally found in the KSU archives an article about Ralph Merrill Nichols, who was captain of the KSU FB team in 1922 and 1923, left school to work in Venezuela, returned to the US and played a year of pro ball, and died in a car accident in 1929. Here is his data:

 

RALPH MERRILL NICHOLS - 1926 Hartford, attended Oskaloosa (KS) HS, Kansas State U.  He was born 08/22/1899 in Galesburg, KS, and died in San Angelo, TX, 01/21/29.

 

38. BENJAMIN NORMAN 'BEN' GREENBERG (GREEN) - 1930 Bkn, attended Leonia (NJ) HS, Rutgers U. He was born 06/30/07 in NYC, and died 10/22/84 in Bergen County, NJ.  He changed his name to Green after his FB career. A file of interviews with graduates of Rutgers many years after their graduation lists his name as Benjamin N Green (Greenberg). A family ttree listing also shows his name as Benjamin N Green, lived in Leonia, with parents whose last name was Greenberg.  Person who died in 1976 was not the player.

 

39.  There is a listing on all websites for a Williiam D Clark, 1920 Dayton, who died in 1973.  I never found any reference to a William or Bill Clark for that team. I did find several references to a Louis 'Foos or Foose' Clark, who had played and coached for the Dayton team before it joined the APFA. There is a team picture online, submitted by a relative of Lee Fenner, a member of that team. All the players are identified, with the only discrepancy in names from what is listed on all sites is the name of Louis 'Foos' Clark. I believe this is the player:

 

LOUIS WILL  'FOOS' CLARK - 1920 Dayton, attended U of Dayton. He was born 02/08/1892 in Dayton, Ohio, and died 05/10/46 in Dayton.  There are several online references to him playing and coaching for teams in Dayton.

 

Thank you.

May 5, 2015 at 6:03 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #14

 

40. RALPH MICHAEL 'MIKE' TRAYNOR - 1923-24 Buffalo - attended Canisius College. He was born 07/28/00 in Bangor, ME, and died 09/21/67 in Buffalo, NY. Obit in Buffalo Courier-Express, 09/22/67, mentioned FB career.  The person named Michael Trainor who died in 1980, and is listed on most websites, had nothing to do with Buffalo, Canisius, or football.

 

 

41.  ANGUS 'CY or BIG CY' MACDONALD - 1921 Wash - attended Central HS (Wash DC). Georgetown U.  He was born 08/16/1886 in Washington, and died there on 05/22/39.  His obit is in the Wash. Post, 05/24/39. He was a legendary high football and baseball player, and played minor league baseball for several years.  He was prevented from playing in the DC high school championship FB game because of allegations that he had played pro baseball.  After his playing career, he managed a sporting goods store.  The person named Cyril McDonald, born in 1896, who is listed on some websites, was a black man from the British West Indies, and did not play football.

 

 

42.  There is a listing on most sites for a John Lott, who attended Lawrenceville (NJ) Academy, and played for Orange and Bkn in the NFL. There is no mention of a John Lott in any Lawrenceville yearbooks, or news articles , but there was Edson Lott, who was a FB star for them at that time.  I could not connect him to pro FB until I found an article in a 1943 Charleston, SC, newspaper, mentioning Edson Lott, a former pro player with Brooklyn, who was captain of a military FB team. Here is his data:

 

 

EDSON SCHUYLER LOTT - 1929 Orange, 1930 Bkn - attended Lawrenceville Academy.  He was born in NYC, 01/17/05, and died in Haverford, PA, on 06/28/92.

 

Thank you.

May 19, 2015 at 11:36 AM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #15

 

43. LUKE WARNER MIZELL  -  1931 Bkn, Frankford  -  attended Miami (FL) Senior HS, Georgia Tech..- He was born 03/22/08 in Atlanta, GA, and died 10/02/62 in Montclair, NJ. He was living in Ridgefield, CT, at the time of his death. Obit in Bridgeport (CT) Post, 10/03/62.  Data corroborated by his son. Person named Lawrence Warner Mizell listed on some sites was not the player.

 

44.  EDWARD ALOYSIUS 'EDDIE' HARRISON  -  1926 Bkn  -  attended Boston College.  He was born in Brooklyn, 02/03/02, and died in Green Harbor, MA, 05/  /69.   Death reported in Boston College Alumni Bulletin, 1969. Person who died in NY in 1981 was not the player.

 

45.  J.B. 'JB" ANDREWS - 1934 StL - attended U of Texas-El Paso. He was born 01/07/07 in Tyler, TX, and died in Louisville, KY, 11/15/95.  According to his daughter-in-law, he was christened 'J.B.', but began using the name 'James B' later in life.  As for his alleged nickname 'Jaby', I never saw any use of that name throughout his college career, and only once in a 1934 newspaper. All other articles referred to him as 'JB'.   Person born in 1912 was not the player.

 

Thank you.

May 23, 2015 at 1:37 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #16

 

46.  LAWRENCE EDWARD 'LARRY' GREENE - 1920 Canton - attended Haverhill (MA) HS, Georgetown U. He was born 07/02/1895 in Rockland, MA, and died 08/07/60.  Obit in Boston Globe, 08/08/60. Data corroborated by military record.  Person named Larry Green, who died in 1976, is not the player.

 

 

47.IVAN ANDY 'IKE' WILLIAMS - 1929 SI, 1926 Newark (AFL) - attended Little Rock (AR) Central HS, Georgia Tech.  He was born 04/23/02 in Marshall, OK, and died 04/18/88 in Urbana, OH. Obit in Dayton Daily News, 04/20/88. 

 

 

48. JAMES ROTHERY (JIMMY) SIMPSON - 1922 Toledo, 1924 Kenosha - attended Waite HS (Toledo), U of Detroit.  He was born in Ontario, CANADA, and died in Encino, CA, 09/29/62  His date of birth is listed as 07/29/1897, 06/29/1898, or 07/29/1899 (SSDI), depending on the source. There are 2 other James Simpsons listed on other sites, but neither were FB players.  The Toledo Blade of 04/28/59 mentioned that Jimmy Simpson, former Waite HS football star, was in town visiting  from Encino, CA, where he lived.  This person died in Encino 3 years later. 

 

Thank you.

June 2, 2015 at 12:58 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #17

 

 

49. WILLIAM RICHARD 'BILL' ROONEY - 1923-25, 1927 Duluth, 1925 NYG, 1926 Bkn, 1929 ChiC - He was born 06/09/1896 in Hull, Quebec, Canada, and died 01/13/88 in N. Hollywood, CA. He was the oldest of the 3 Rooney brothers of early Duluth fame.  I received informatiom from a descendant of Joe Rooney, mentioning Bill had died in California,  California Death Index lists this person's mother's maiden name as Field, while Joe Rooney's entry on the Minnesota Death Index lists his mother's name as Fields, so this is the correct Bill Rooney. The person who died in 1966 was not the player.

 

 

50. JOHN FRANCIS MAHONEY - 1923 Buffalo - attended Holyoke (MA) HS, Canisius University.  All other websites have John Jacob Mahoney, who was from Clarence, NY, and died in 1980.  The Boston Post of 11/16/22 mentions that Canisius had 11 New England players on their FB team, including John Mahoney of Holyoke. A 1922 Canisius catalogue has a listing for John F Mahoney of Holyoke, so I believe that this is the right person.

 

 JOHN FRANCIS MAHONEY - born 12/22/1900, Holyoke, MA - died 11/28/1971 in Springfield, MA.

 

 

51.  I had been reluctant to list the following player, since I could not find an obit for him, and considering the notoriety that surrounded him in 1929, I had a hard time believing that he could have lived as long as he did, without anyone being aware of who he was.  In 1929, NYU was scheduled to play University of Georgia in NY.  NYU had a very good player named Dave Myers, who happened to be black.  Georgia refused to play if Myers was allowed to play, so NYU authorities were willing to accommodate them. A public outcry caused them to re-consider, but then Myers suddenly developed a shoulder injury, preventing him from playing.  The player listed on all websites died in NY in 1972.  I believe this person was Caucasian.  I believe the correct person was named David Willoughby Myers, born in New Bedford, MA, to Jamaican parents named Willoughby and Isabella Myers. They moved to NYC, where David went to high school and college. In the 1940 US census, there is a listing in NY for a black man named David Myers, who had 4 years of college, and was working at a government job. He had married a woman from Germany, and one of the members of his household was his father, Willoughby (misspelled Wilobe).  He evidently moved to Maine in the 1980's and died there. Here is his data:

 

DAVID WILLOUGHBY 'DAVE' MYERS - 1930 SI, 1931 Bkn - He was born 09/07/06 in New Bedford, MA, and died in Houlton, ME on 03/05/97.  His widow died there several years later.

 

There is confusion in tracking him through the census records, etc., because of the variations in the spelling of his last name (Myers, Meyers, Meyer).

 

 

Here is just a personal memory of a player who recently passed away.  I had taken my family to Newport, RI, back in the late 1970's, and stopped for lunch in a Greek restauarant. When I sat down, I noticed the name Mellekas on the door, and was told that it was John Mellekas.  I talked to him about his career, and he seemed very appreciative that I remembered him from my years in Chicago when he was with the Bears.

 

Thank you.

June 16, 2015 at 7:17 AM Flag Quote & Reply

OldestLivingProFootball.com
Site Owner
Posts: 26

Steve,

 

Thanks for the story on Mellekas.  I know you have more so when you get time, please share!

June 16, 2015 at 12:45 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group #18

 

 

52.  NED C SCOTT - 1924 Rock Island  -  attended Monmouth (IL) HS, and Monmouth (IL) College - He was born 06/08/01 in IL, and died 12/19/60 in Dekalb County, GA.  He is listed on the GA Death Index, and Findagrave.com.  His real name was Ned, not Edward, Edwin, etc.  The person who died in Iowa in 1987 was not the player.

 

 

53. HENRY STANLEY 'DUTCH' SHANK - 1920 Decatur - attended Hyde Park (Chicago) HS,  U of Illinois, Christian Bros. College (Missouri).  He was born 02/18/1892 in Chicago, and died in Chicago on 03/19/62.  All websites have Henry Mountz Shank, who was born in 1896 in Sumner Cty, IL, and died in 1977 in Mt Erie, IL.  In 1911, Henry Shank was All-city halfback at Hyde Park HS, then played freshman FB at Illinois in 1913 and transferred to Christian Brothers in 1914, where he played a game against his former Illini teammates.  The person who died in 1977 would have been 15 years old when he was All-City at Hyde Park.  He was not the player.

 

 

54.  JOSEPH MATESIC - 1954 Pittsburgh - He is still listed as having died in PA in 1989.  I talked by phone to the real Joe Matesic in 2010, at which time he was living in Ohio.  His birth date is 11/21/29.  I have seen nothing to indicate that he has died since that time. Outside of being a bit hard-of-hearing, he was in good health in 2010, and hopefully this is still true.

 

Thank you.

June 25, 2015 at 1:22 PM Flag Quote & Reply

LJP
Member
Posts: 72

Re: Henry Shank

A program for the Decatur Staleys vs Moline Tractors game on October 3 1920, lists Shank as a Maryland State player. Later Bears media guides (through 2014) record him as J. L. Shank.

June 26, 2015 at 3:30 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

LJP at June 26, 2015 at 3:30 PM

Re: Henry Shank

A program for the Decatur Staleys vs Moline Tractors game on October 3 1920, lists Shank as a Maryland State player. Later Bears media guides (through 2014) record him as J. L. Shank.

LJP,

        Thank you for your feedback on Shank.  It is always welcome, especially on a player for whom there seems to be contradictory evidence.  First of all, in regard to the name 'JL Shank', the only place I have ever seen that is in the Bears Media Guide.  Throughout the 1950's, when the Staley Company was trying to locate all the players from the 1920 and 1921 Staley teams, he was referred to as Henry Shank.  In the picture published in their anniversary brochure in 1956, his name is listed as Henry Shank.  Unless I see some evidence to the contrary, this is the name I am assuming is correct. 

       As for the Maryland possibility, there is a H A Shank listed as a 1915 letterman there. However, H A Shank is listed as a student there until he graduated in 1923.  A 1930 Alumni Bulletin lists him as 'Class of '23'', and has him working for a railway mail service between NYC and DC. Considering that 'Pard' Pearce was the only player on the Staleys who did not have a Midwest connection, I am reluctant to believe that the guy from Maryland played for the Staleys, when there exists a logical alternative.  Henry Stanley Shank definitely played for Hyde Park High School in Chicago, then for the University of Illinois, before transferring to Christian Brothers in Missouri. He entered military service in 1917 and was discharged in August of 1919. I am not totally discounting the possibility of the Staleys' player being from Maryland, but the early program listings of the colleges that the players attended are often inaccurate. 

         I would welcome any further evidence that anyone has on this player.  Thank you.

                                                              Steve J 

June 29, 2015 at 7:17 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Tod Maher
Member
Posts: 15

Re: Shank

I'm pretty surre he played/lettered at Maryland in 1915 in addition to playing at Illinois and Christian Brothers.

Yes, the Maryalnd all-time letterwinners lists him as "H.A." but I think that is a typo.  In the 12/9/15 Washington Post list of letterwinners it lists him as H.S. Shank.  A 10/31/15 Washington Herald article mentions "an eviable record in the Middle West..."

Also, the Decatur papers in 1920 said he was from Illinois and Maryland State.

June 29, 2015 at 6:15 PM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Tod Maher at June 29, 2015 at 6:15 PM

Re: Shank

I'm pretty surre he played/lettered at Maryland in 1915 in addition to playing at Illinois and Christian Brothers.

Yes, the Maryalnd all-time letterwinners lists him as "H.A." but I think that is a typo.  In the 12/9/15 Washington Post list of letterwinners it lists him as H.S. Shank.  A 10/31/15 Washington Herald article mentions "an eviable record in the Middle West..."

Also, the Decatur papers in 1920 said he was from Illinois and Maryland State.

Tod,

 

        Thanks for helping to tie all the pieces together.

 

                                                                                         Steve J

June 30, 2015 at 9:20 AM Flag Quote & Reply

steve j
Member
Posts: 177

Group # 19

 

 

55. JOHN FREDERICK 'FRITZ' FERKO - 1937-38 Phi - attended Nesquehoning (PA) HS, Mt. St. Mary's College (MD)  -  He was born 12/23/10 in Nesquehoning, and died 01/22/74 in Jim  Thorpe, PA. Obit in Hazleton (PA) Standard-Speaker, 01/24/74, mentions his FB career.  Person who died in 1984 is not the player.

 

 

56. WILLIAM FREDERICK 'FRED' BROWN  -  1930  Staten Island - attended Dedham (MA) HS, New York University.  He was born 08/29/05 in Dedham, MA, and died 02/28/79 in Bradenton, FL.  The person who died in 1973 and  is listed on all websites is named Frederick Brown (not Wm Frederick as NYU records show),  had no connection to Dedham, and is not the player.

 

 

57.  All websites have a listing for the 1922 Packers for a fullback named Augustus Gus Gardella, who was born in NYC in 1895, and died in Bridgeport, CT in 1985.  This person does not seem to have had any connection to sports at all.  There was a Gus Gardella who was a long-time minor-league baseball player, manager, and umpire from the teens into at least the 1930's.  He died in Boston in 1955, but seemed to have no connection to football.  However, there is a notice in several newspapers about the death in Worcester, MA, of Anthony 'Knocko' Gardella, a fullback for the 1922 Packers.  I believe he is the player.

 

ANTHONY JOSEPH 'KNOCKO, BULLET' GARDELLA - 1922 GB - attended Holy Cross U (Worcester).  He was born in Worcester on 10/15/1895, and died there on 12/26/1974.

 

 

Thank you.

 

July 9, 2015 at 10:57 AM Flag Quote & Reply

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