The answer may surprise you. The Kansas City Chiefs were originally the Dallas Texans, but they changed their name in 1963.
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The Early Years of the Franchise
The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. The team was founded in 1960 as the Dallas Texans by businessmen Lamar Hunt and Oscar Wilde and was a charter member of the American Football League (AFL). In 1963, the team relocated to Kansas City, Missouri, and were renamed the Kansas City Chiefs.
The team’s origins in Dallas
In 1960, the Dallas Texans were formed as an expansion team in the American Football League (AFL). The Texans were owned by Lamar Hunt, who had also been a founding owner of the AFL. The team’s head coach was Hank Stram, and their home games were played at the Cotton Bowl.
In 1962, the Texans won the AFL Championship, but struggled to find success in the subsequent years. By 1965, it was apparent that Dallas could not support two professional football teams, and so the Texans were relocated to Kansas City, Missouri. The team was renamed the Kansas City Chiefs in honor of a former mayor of the city, Harold “Chief” McLaughlin.
The team’s move to Kansas City
In 1963, the team moved from Dallas to Kansas City and changed their name to the Chiefs. The name was chosen in honor of Mayor Harold Roe Bartle, who had a huge impact on bringing the team to Kansas City.
Bartle was a beloved figure in the city, and he was also known as the “Chief” of the Missouri Tribe. So, when it came time to choose a new name for the team, the owners decided on “Chiefs” as a way to honor Bartle.
The Chiefs have been one of the most successful franchises in NFL history, winning two Super Bowls and appearing in five others. They are also one of only two teams (along with the Green Bay Packers) to have won a Super Bowl while based in their home city.
The Name Change
In 1963, the NFL franchise was originally founded as the Dallas Texans. The team was then relocated to Kansas City in 1963 and renamed the Kansas City Chiefs. The name Chiefs was chosen by a fan contest. The team’s owner, Lamar Hunt, decided on the name Chiefs because of the city’s mayor at the time, Harold Roe Bartle, who was also known as the “Chief” of the Missouri Tribe.
Why the team changed its name
In 1963, the franchise moved from Dallas to Kansas City and changed its name to the Chiefs in an effort to align itself with then-Mayor Harold Roe Bartle’s imminent Superman-themed civic event, the “Smallpox Eradication Tournament of Champions.”
Bartle, who went by the nickname “Chief,” was a key figure in getting the team to move to Kansas City. He was also a member of the Kansas CityMO Masons, who had recently lost their Scottish Rite Temple (which they had used as their headquarters) in a fire. Bartle convinced the team’s owner at the time, Lamar Hunt, to name the team after the masonic order.
The name was originally supposed to be just “Chiefs,” without the “KC” logo that is now so iconic. But when designing the logo, Hunt’s wife Mia mistakenly put “KC” instead of “C” and everyone liked it so much they decided to keep it.
The Chiefs made it to their first Super Bowl in 1970, but lost to the Green Bay Packers. They would go on to win their first and only championship in Super Bowl IV in 1970, defeating the Minnesota Vikings 23-7.
How the team chose its new name
In 1960, the franchise was renamed the Kansas City Chiefs after a fan contest. The name change coincided with the move to Kansas City’s Municipal Stadium, home of the Kansas City Athletics at the time.
According to team lore, Hunt chose “Chiefs” because of Mayor H. Roe Bartle, who had encouraged him to bring professional football to Kansas City and who was known as “The Chief”. However, it is more likely that Hunt simply liked the name because it sounded strikingly similar to his alma mater’s mascot, the [Clemson Tigers](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clemson_Tigers).
The Chiefs have used variations of two team logos since their inception. The first logo was introduced in 1963 and consisted of a profile of a Native American chief in full headdress; it was used until 1989. The second logo was designed by then-owners Jack Steadman and Lamar Hunt and introduced in 1970; it consisted of a simple arrowhead shape filled in with red and white containing a white “KC” inside; this logo is still used on team jerseys.
The Kansas City Chiefs Today
The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. They were founded in 1960 as the Dallas Texans by businessman Lamar Hunt and were a charter member of the American Football League (AFL). In 1963, the team moved to Kansas City and assumed their current name. The Chiefs joined the NFL as a result of the merger in 1970.
The team’s recent success
One of the most storied franchises in the NFL, the Kansas City Chiefs have a long and proud history dating back to their days as the Dallas Texans. The team was founded in 1960 by Lamar Hunt, and they were originally a part of the American Football League (AFL). The team moved to Kansas City in 1963 and officially became the Chiefs.
The team has been through ups and downs over the years, but they have always been one of the most popular teams in the NFL. In recent years, they have experienced a resurgence under head coach Andy Reid and quarterback Patrick Mahomes. The Chiefs won the AFC Championship in 2019 and 2020, and they are one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl again in 2021.
Despite their recent success, the Chiefs still have a controversial name and logo that many Native Americans find offensive. The team has shown no signs of changing their name or logo anytime soon, but it is something that continues to be a source of debate.
The team’s fans
The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. The team was founded in 1960 as the Dallas Texans by businessman Lamar Hunt and was a charter member of the American Football League (AFL). In 1963, the team relocated to Kansas City and assumed their current name. The Chiefs joined the NFL as a result of the merger in 1970. The team is valued at over $2 billion.
The Chiefs began play in AFL history in 1960 as the Dallas Texans. In their debut season, they posted an 8–6 record under head coach Hank Stram, finishing second in the Western Conference behind the Los Angeles Chargers. The team appeared in two AFL Championship Games, winning their first appearance against the Buffalo Bills following the 1962 season, but losing their second appearance to the San Diego Chargers following the 1966 season. Despite this early success, they struggled to find consistent success throughout the rest of their tenure in Dallas; they qualified for postseason play just three more times during their final fourteen years there (1970, 1971, and 1975),never once making it past the AFC Divisional Playoffs during that span.
In order to make room for both teams after they merged with each other, as well as with keep both of them geographically close to their fan bases (the Cowboys were based out of Texas while most of Kansas City’s fans live in Missouri and surrounding states), it was decided that one team would have to move. After much discussion and deliberation by then-NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle, it was decided that becauseStram had been such an instrumental part of building not onlythe Texans/Chiefs franchise but alsothe AFL itself, that it would be only fitting if they became oneof only two teams to represent their cities when threateitheir AFL teams would merge withthe older and more established NFL. As such, on March 15th, 1970 it was announced that for $25 million dollars (three times what Lamar Hunt had originally paid for them just ten years prior),
the Dallas Texans would relocate to Kansas City effective immediately and be renamedto “The Kansas City Chiefs”, thus giving Missouri two NFL teams (The other being The Saint Louis Cardinals who had relocated from Chicago 20 years prior).