How Did the Green Bay Packers Get Their Name?

How Did the Green Bay Packers Get Their Name?

Since we are headquartered in Wisconsin, you can’t blame us for being passionate about the Green Bay Packers. A wall in our breakroom even features a mural graphic of Lambeau Field. Many of our employees are diehard fans, season ticket holders, and part owners. Even if you’re not a fan, the Packers have a unique tie to the packaging industry that everyone can appreciate. Let’s take a look!

Green Bay Packers Timeline

The Beginning – Indian Packing Packers

The Packers were organized over two meetings in August 1919 with the Indian Packing Company becoming the team’s sponsor. The Indian Packing Company was a Green Bay company that was booming at the time due to lucrative contracts to provide canned foods to the troops in World War I. Curly Lambeau was working as a meatpacking foreman at Indian Packing along with a few other original players when he solicited funds from his employer to support the squad.

The team practiced in a large empty field next to Indian Packing’s plant during their first two seasons. The Packers' first team photo was taken in front of the plant’s garage. The company also supplied the team’s uniforms, a few footballs, and some shoulder pads. The sweater jerseys the Packers wore featured a “Council Meats” emblem which was the popular canned meat product Indian Packing produced.

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The team practicing outside of the Indian Packing plant. (Photo credit

The Short-Lived Acme Packers Era

Shortly after the Packers’ second season ended, it was reported that the Acme Packing Company of Chicago had purchased Indian Packing. Once the sale of Indian Packing was finalized, the only officer retained by Acme, John M. Clair, and his brother J. Emmett Clair agreed to continue to sponsor the team in Acme’s name. The Packers officially joined the American Professional Football Association on August 27, 1921, with J. Emmett Clair as the team’s representative and manager.

Unfortunately, Acme Packing got into a heavy debt situation by the end of 1921 and the Clair brothers remained in Chicago. The team had struggles of their own resulting in being kicked out of the league due to using college players in their final game of the season. The team was readmitted to the league (which had been renamed the National Football League) before the 1922 season, but the Clair brothers still held the title to the franchise and were considering moving the team to Chicago. Curly Lambeau was able to get the rights and take the reigns of the now privately owned Green Bay Football Club. With the team deeply in debt, it was decided that a stock sale was necessary to save the franchise. Upon a successful sale, the publicly owned Green Bay Football Corporation emerged.

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The Packers' 1921 team photo. (Photo credit

Becoming the Green Bay Packers

The next ten years were filled with successful seasons, growing interest in the small town team, and winning multiple titles. On January 26, 1935, the organization filed articles of incorporation with the state of Wisconsin to officially become the Green Bay Packers and the rest, as they say, is history!

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