pub-769827371306972 pub-769827371306972
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118 football seasons ago

The team is from Bluffton, but they weren't Pirates and they didn't wear red and white ...all that came later

County champs – This Bluffton football team reigned as the Allen County champions in 1904, based upon the slate board message in the photo.

And, according to the other slate sign, the team outscored opponents 108 to 30.

We aren’t aware of the number of games played. We do, however, know that the 1901 Bluffton team’s opponents included Ada, Columbus Grove, Fostoria, Mt. Blanchard and McComb.

It would be logical that these were similar opponents in 1904, but it's just a guess.

Several players have nose guards hanging around their necks. Although the photo indicates this is Bluffton High School year, three players identified in a 1901 team photo had graduated from Bluffton High School by 1904. So, we aren’t certain about the membership qualifications making up this team

The three we’ve identified in this photo are Milt Mitchell, standing, third from left; Joe Owens, second row, second from left; and R.L. Triplett, front row, second from left.

To view the 1901 photo, known as the first-ever Bluffton High School football team, click here.


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