Saturday, July 9, 2011

1939 Championship Watch

As we've seen, not all championships are celebrated with rings. From time to time the Packers have gaven watches to players as a reward for getting to the top of the mountain; first a pocket watch in 1929 and again a wristwatch in 1962.

This smart wristwatch commemorates the Packers' 1939 World Championship.

On the reverse, this inscription:

Bud Jorgensen
World Champions

Carl "Bud" Jorgensen was a trainer and coach. He joined the Packers as an equipment manager in 1924 after graduating from Green Bay West High School. The way he told it, "I first got involved with the club because my dad worked for the railroad and he got me a pass so I could make a trip with the team. Pat Holland was the trainer and equipment man then. He wanted to hang it up, so Curly Lambeau said, 'Why don't you help Pat and learn the ropes so you can step in there?'"

That casual remark would begin an association with the Green Bay Packers that would last for nearly five decades.

Jorgensen worked his way up the Packer ladder. By 1939, when the Packers bested the Giants in the title game, Jorgensen was so instrumental to the club that the players voted him a half-share of the playoff money. He was only one of three non-players to be so honored; the other two were trainer David Woodward, Holland's successor, who received the other half-share, and assistant coach Richard "Red" Smith. Curly Lambeau himself was also offered a full share, but returned it to the pool.

Woodward died in Feburary of 1940, and Jorgensen took his place as head trainer, a position he would hold until the Dan Devine era. During his career, he missed only two games; one in 1929 for the birth of his son, and one in 1958 when his wife was recovering from major surgery.

Those two games aside, Jorgensen was a fixture in the training room and on the sidelines.

Press-Gazette archives
Jorgensen wraps halfback Paul Hornung's right ankle n the Packers' new training room, nicknamed the "White Room," before a workout in July 1964.
We can see Jorgensen in these two team photos, each one representing a championship team under his two Hall of Fame coaches:

Press-Gazette archives
Front row (left to right): Charles (Buckets) Goldenberg (43); Paul Duhart (42); Ben Starret (63); Pete Tinsley (21); Forrest McPherson (72); Larry Craig (54); Charley Brock(29); Lou Brock (16); Roy McKay 93); Joe Laws (24). Middle row: Trainer Carl (Bud) Jorgensen; William Kuusisto (45); Ray Wheba (17); Glen Sorenson (33); Bob Flowers (35); Harry Jacunski (48); Ted Fritsch (64); Don Perkins (23); Charles Tollefson (46); Joel Mason (7); Trainer Gust Seaburg. Back row: Coach Curly Lambeau; Don Hutson (14); Paul Berezney (47); Ade Schwammel (58); Irv Comp (51): Milburn (Tiny) Croft (75); Bob Kercher (18); Bob Kahler (8) Buford (Baby) Ray (44); Amadeo (Mike) Bucchianeri; Assistant Coach George (Brute) Trafton.
Press-Gazette archives
Front row (left to right): Dave Robinson (89); Don Chandler (34); Lionel Aldridge (82); Doug Hart (43); Hank Gremminger (46); Ron Kostelnik (77); Willie Wood (24); Herb Adderley (26); Bob Jeter (21); Marv Flemming (81). Second row: Trainer Carl (Bud) Jorgensen; Lloyd Voss (71); Carroll Dale (84); Bart Starr (15); Elijah Pitts (22); Bill Anderson (88); Zeke Bratkowski (12); Dan Grimm (67); Tom Moore (25); Bob Long (80); Tom Brown (40); Equipment manager Gerald (Dad) Braisher. Third row: Assistant trainer Domenic Gentile, Bill Curry (50); Tommy Crutcher (56); Junior Coffey (41); Henry Jordan (74); Jerry Kramer (64); Fred (Fuzzy) Thurston (63); Bob Skoronski (76); Willie Davis (87); Ray Nitschke (66); Assistant equipment manager Bob Noel. Back row: Allen Jacobs (35); Rich Marshall (70); Dennis Claridge (10); Ken Bowman (57); Boyd Dowler (86); Forrest Gregg (75); Steve Wright (72); Jim Taylor (31); Paul Hornung (5); Max McGee (85).
Jorgensen retired in 1971, and was inducted into the Packers Hall of Fame in 1976. His record of 47 contunuous seasons with the team still stands as a record today, as does his run of championships. Jorgensen was a part of eleven championship teams. For this, he undoubtedly received many mementos and awards, but I doubt any of them had the particular style of this 1939 wristwatch.

(h/t: Mark Schneider for the wristwatch photos)

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