In today's Rewarding Moments In Redskins History presented by Maryland Lottery My Lottery Rewards, we look back at the Redskins moving from Boston to Washington, D.C. on Feb. 13, 1937.
The year was 1937, and owner George Preston Marshall was not happy with his team's fan base.
At the end of 1936, his team was one of the best in the NFL. it had just captured the Eastern division crown and was set to play the Packers for an NFL Championship. Despite all that, the team was not getting the fan support that Marshall felt it deserved, as only 4,813 fans attended the 30-0 shutout over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
So, Marshall decided to move the championship game from Fenway Park to a neutral site -- the Polo Grounds in New York. As a result, the Packers beat the Redskins handily, 21-6.
The team left New York empty-handed, but the loss started the Redskins on the path towards moving to Washington D.C. They shared Griffith Stadium with the first Washington Senators baseball team, and Marshall went one step further by making the Redskins the first team in NFL history to have a fight song and marching band -- traditions that are still in use today.
The Redskins had immediate success in Washington. Led by Sammy Baugh, who head coach Ray Flaherty recruited personally in an All-Star game against the Packers, the Redskins won their first game in their new home against the New York Giants, 13-3. Later in the season, they beat the Giants again, this time for their first division title in Washington, and blew them out with a 49-14 victory.
It took moving over 400 miles, but the Redskins had finally found a place they could call home.