Side A: On September 17, 1920, representatives from ten professional football teams met in Canton and formed the American Professional Football Association, which in 1922 became the National Football League (NFL). Pro football evolved from club football in the 1890s, and by the early 1900s had begun to spread across the country, concentrating in the Midwest. Jim Thorpe, the first nationally prominent pro, started with the Canton Bulldogs-an early pro football power-in 1915. In 1959, Canton citizens launched a well-organized and ultimately successful effort to have their city, “the cradle of professional football,” designated as the site of a monument to the sport’s historic stars. The Professional Football Hall of Fame opened on September 7, 1963, inducting seventeen charter members. The Hall of Fame interprets and promotes the study of the role of professional football in American culture.