• Bears Team Nickname

    In 1922, Halas changed the team name from the Staleys to the Bears. The team moved into Wrigley Field, which was home to the Chicago Cubs baseball franchise. As with several early NFL franchises, the Bears derived their nickname from their city’s baseball team some directly, some indirectly like the Bears, whose young are called “cubs”. Halas liked the bright orange-and-blue colors of his alma mater, the University of Illinois, and the Bears adopted those colors as their own, albeit in a darker shade of each the blue is a navy blue, and the orange is Pantone 1665, similar to burnt orange.

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  • New Owner Virginia McCaskey

    On November 1, 1983, a day after the death of George Halas, his oldest daughter, Virginia McCaskey, took over as the majority owner of the team. Her husband, Ed McCaskey, succeeded her father as the Chairman of the Board. Their son Michael became the third president in team history. Mrs. McCaskey holds the honorary title of “secretary of the board of directors”, but the 90 year old matriarch has been called the glue that holds the franchise together. Mrs. McCaskey’s reign as the owner of the Bears was not planned, as her father originally earmarked her brother, George “Mugs” Halas, Jr. as the heir apparent to the franchise. However, he died of a massive heart attack in 1979. Her impact on the team is well-noted as her own family has dubbed her “The First Lady of Sports”, and the Chicago Sun-Times has listed her as one of Chicago’s most powerful women.

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  • Super Bowl Winner 1985

    Super Bowl XX – 1985
    Mike Ditka, a tight end for the Bears from 1961 to 1966, was hired to coach the team by George Halas in 1982. His gritty personality earned him the nickname “Iron Mike.” In the 1985 season the fire in the Bears–Packers rivalry was relit when Ditka used 315 pound defensive tackle “Refrigerator” Perry as a running back in a touchdown play at Lambeau Field, against the Packers. The Bears won their ninth NFL Championship, first since the AFL-NFL merger, in Super Bowl XX after the 1985 season in which they dominated the NFL with their then-revolutionary 46 defense and a cast of characters that recorded the novelty rap song “The Super Bowl Shuffle”. The season was notable in that the Bears had only one loss, the “unlucky 13th” game of the season, a Monday night affair in which they were defeated by the Miami Dolphins. At the time, much was made of the fact that the 1972 Dolphins were the only franchise in history to have had an undefeated season and post-season. The Dolphins came close to setting up a rematch in the Super Bowl, but lost to the New England Patriots in the AFC title game. “The Super Bowl Shuffle” was videotaped the day after that Monday night loss in Miami.

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  • Soldier Field Renovation

    In 2001, the Chicago Park District, which owns the structure, faced substantial criticism when it announced plans to alter the stadium with a design by architect Benjamin T. Wood of the Boston-based architecture firm Wood and Zapata. Stadium grounds were reconfigured by Chicago-based architecture firm of Lohan Associate, led by architect Dirk Lohan, the grandson of architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The stadium’s interior would be demolished and reconstructed while the exterior would be preserved.

    Proponents argued the renovation was direly needed citing aging and cramped facilities. The New York Times ranked the renovated Soldier Field as one of the five best new buildings of 2003. Soldier Field was given an award in design excellence by the American Institute of Architects in 2004.

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The Chicago Bears are a professional American football team based in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league's National Football Conference (NFC) North division. The Bears have won nine NFL Championships and one Super Bowl and hold the NFL record for the most enshrines in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the most retired jersey numbers. The Bears have also recorded more regular season and overall victories than any other NFL franchise.

Established
1920

City
Decatur - Chicago

League History
1920 – Present / National Football League

Team History
1922 - Present / Chicago Bears
1921 / Chicago Staleys
1920 / Decatur Staleys

Nickname
Bears - In 1922, after team founder-manager and star end George Halas purchased the team, he changed the name to the Bears. Halas reasoned that because football players were generally bigger than baseball players, and the city’s baseball team was the Cubs, then logically the football team should be the Bears.

Championship
Super Bowl  1
1986
NFL Championships  6
1963, 1946, 1943, 1941, 1940, 1933
NFL Standings Champion  0
1921

Stadium
2003 - Present / Soldier Field II

*Champaign*
2002 / Memorial Stadium

*Chicago*
1971 - 2001 / Soldier Field I
1921 - 1970 / Wrigley Field

*Decatur*
1919 - 1920 / Staley Field

Owner
1983 - Present / Virginia Halas McCaskey
1933 - 1983 / George Halas
1921 - 1933 / George Halas and Dutch Sternaman

1919 - 1921 / A. E. Staley

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Retired Number
3 Bronko Nagurski
5 George McAfee
7 George Halas
28 Willie Galimore
34 Walter Payton
40 Gale Sayers
41 Brian Piccolo
42 Sid Luckman
51 Dick Butkus
56 Bill Hewitt
61 Bill George
66 Clyde "Bulldog" Turner
77 Harold "Red" Grange
89 Mike Ditka

Mascot
2003 - Present / Staley Da Bear

*Blue is this team’s history

Bears History Comments

 

 

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