The franchise we all know and love as the Chicago Bears was established on September 20, 1919, but back then they were known as the Decatur Staleys. They remained in Decatur, Illinois, which is about 200 miles southwest of the Windy City, for two years. In 1921 George Halas and Edward “Dutch” Sternaman took full control of the franchise, and they became the Chicago Staleys.
We all know the story of Halas being inspired to take his franchise’s name from the Chicago Cubs — because Bears are bigger and tougher than Cubs — and that decision was made 100 years ago today.
On June 24, 1922, the franchise joined the newly formed NFL, and they changed their name to the Chicago Bears.
When the American Professional Football Association changed its name to the @NFL 100 years ago today, one of its teams, the Chicago Staleys, also changed their name.— Pro Football Hall of Fame (@ProFootballHOF) June 24, 2022
June 24, 1922 was the @ChicagoBears first day being called the Bears. pic.twitter.com/J6P0ftpAzI
Chicago went 9-3 and finished in second place their first season playing as the Bears.
The Canton Bulldogs won the championship that inaugural NFL season, and the only two franchises besides the Bears that are still playing are the Chicago (now the Arizona) Cardinals and the Green Bay Packers.