1997 George Halas (Red Line) – Football Coaches
- Honors one of the greatest US football coaches of all time
- Also issued in pane of 20 with four stamp designs (no red line)
32¢, First Class Mail Rate
First Days of Issue:
August 16, 1997
First Day Cities:
Printed for Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. By Sterling Sommer of Tonawanda, New York
Panes of 20 (Horizontal 4 across, 5 down)
Large tagging block over all 20 stamps, covering the stamps to the edges
Why the stamp was issued:
To commemorate one of the greatest US football coaches in history: George Halas.
About the stamp design:
The stamp pictures a design by artist Daniel Moore. It pictures coach Halas wearing a hat and his “lucky” light blue sweater. He is shown going over plays during a game. The artwork was based on a photograph taken by Dave Maenza of Chicago.
Special design details:
The design of this stamp differs from the stamp that came from the pane of 20 issued in July (US #3145) in that there is a red line or bar above the name of the coach. It also has microprinting which reads “CHICAGO” along the bottom stripe on the right sleeve of the player holding a white towel in his left hand.
First Day City:
The First Day of Issue Ceremony was to be held August 16th
at Soldier Field in Chicago just before a Bears pre-season game. However, the game and ceremony had to be postponed to the next day due to bad weather. The stamp was still issued August 16th
About the Legendary Football Coaches set:
A four-stamp set picturing some of US sports history’s greatest football coaches: Paul “Bear” Bryant, Glenn “Pop” Warner, Vince Lombardi, and George Halas. All designs picture art by Daniel Moore. The stamps picture each coach in a different setting based on reference photographs and other sources.
History the stamp represents:
George Halas’ contributions to the game of football are truly legendary. A major force in the development of the professional football league, he helped transform the modern game. In fact, his 1942 team is considered by some to be the greatest team in the history of US professional football.
Born in Chicago, Halas began his professional football career in 1920 with the Decatur Staleys – a team he formed under the American Professional Football Association. An exceptional defensive end, he played for the team, as well as coached it. In 1921, he moved the team to Chicago, and the following year they were renamed the Chicago Bears.
During the 1930s, Halas revolutionized football strategy with his wide-open offensive style. Not only did he revive the T-formation, but he also added a man in motion which allowed for a quick-opening attack and placed a tremendous burden on the defense. He was also one of the first coaches to use film sessions and daily practices to prepare the team for games.
On several occasions, he left coaching, but later returned. When he finally retired in 1968, he had coached the Chicago Bears for 40 seasons and had led them to seven league championships.