History of the Steelers Logo, the Iconic Insignia
Before they were known as the Pittsburgh Steelers, the team was known as the Pittsburgh Pirates. This was the name given to the team by its founder - Arthur Joseph Rooney, Sr. It became necessary to change the name of the team in 1940, though. The local fans particularly needed a name that had a local identity. The team management also saw it fit to have a name that automatically invoked local involvement. The name Steelers was chosen as a direct reference to the cities local Industry. The name became the primary source of identity for the team. The new name would then proceed a new Pittsburgh Steelers logo which came several years later.
The Logo
The Steelers logo is quite iconic and it has an interesting origin story too. Back in the 1940's, helmet logos were not very popular. In fact, the first team to have a logo on their helmets were the Los Angeles Rams back in 1948. The Rams logo itself was not even mandated by the team. It came about as a result of Fred Gehrke's free time exploits. Gehrke was an excellent player and also an artist during his free time. He was the first person to put the horn team insignia on the Rams' players helmets before the team deciding to fully adopt them later. It was only after this decision by the Rams to add logos to their helmets that other teams followed suit.
The first Steelers logo was a simple striped player number. The Republic Steel of Cleveland would then later present the team with a suggestion to use the Steelmark as their default logo. The Steelmark was previously used only by the American Iron and Steel Institute. This logo was officially adopted by the team in 1962. The logo would later change from its original gold color to black.
When it was adopted, the team equipment manager was unsure of how the logo would be applied to the helmets. He, therefore, chose to have it on one side as he waited for further insight on how the logo would look. The choice to have on one side stuck though, and the Steelers have since then been the only team to have a unique design that features a single logo on the side of the helmet.
Essence of the Steelers Logo
In 1963, the logo changed to fully embrace the name of the team. The logo also adopted players' numbers and added a gold stripe. Black face-masks were also adopted and that is how the logo looks to date. The early exploits and successes of the team were the main factors that dissuaded the team from making multiple changes to the now iconic logo. The identity and successes that were associated with the team still remain a huge part of the team's heritage.
The Steelers have a very large number of fans which is mainly based in Pittsburgh. The team adorns the home kits every time they are playing at Heinz Field. You can be able to catch a glimpse of the iconic logo with both the fans and players every time the team is playing.


Pittsburgh Steelers Logos



Pittsburgh Pirates Logo: 1933 - 1939
Pittsburgh Pirates first logo was the city of Pittsburgh’s coat of arms, literally.
Pittsburgh Pirates: 1933 - 1939


Pittsburgh Steelers Logo : 1940 - 1942
This was the Steelers first logo and went along with what Pittsburgh was in the day: smoggy skyline, a construction worker hanging onto a chain holding a pennant. Plus it had the words: 'Pittsburgh Steelers Football Club'
Pittsburgh Steelers Logo: 1940 - 1942


Philadelphia/Pittsburgh Steagles Logo: 1943
Thanks to World War II, it was impossible to fill the roster, so they merged with Philadelphia Eagles forming the “Phil-Pitt Eagles” and were known as the “Steagles.”
Philadelphia/Pittsburgh Steagles Logo: 1943


Philadelphia/Pittsburgh Steagles Logo: 1944
The Steelers merged with the Chicago Cardinals back in 1944, they formed the “CARD-PITT” and informally known as the “Car-Pitts” or “Carpets”, only to go solo next season.
Pittsburgh Pirates Logo: 1944


Chicago Cardinals/Pittsburgh Steelers Logo: 1945 - 1961
The Steelers merged with the Chicago Cardinals back in 1944, they formed the “CARD-PITT” and informally known as the “Car-Pitts” or “Carpets”, only to go solo next season.
Chicago Cardinals/Pittsburgh Steelers Logo: 1933 - 1939


Pittsburgh Steelers: 1962 - 1968
A new logo was designed to show a steel worker punting a football on a steel beam. The mascot Steely McBeam most likely was based on this logo.
Pittsburgh Steelers: 1962 - 1968


Pittsburgh Steelers: 1969 - 2001
A new logo was designed to show a steel worker punting a football on a steel beam. The mascot Steely McBeam most likely was based on this logo.
Pittsburgh Steelers: 1969 - 2001


Pittsburgh Steelers: 2002 - Present
A new logo was designed to show a steel worker punting a football on a steel beam. The mascot Steely McBeam most likely was based on this logo.
Pittsburgh Steelers: 2002 - Present

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