Friday, August 26, 2011

Sports Center Saturday - Harold Nunn and the Boston Shamrocks

As comfortable on the ski slope as the football field
Harold "Bus" Nunn

I was contacted through my blog for information on my father’s brother, Harold “Bus” Nunn.  The person requesting the information manages a website that lists 1,000 living pro football players. The site also provides birth and death dates for over 5,700 deceased players.  The request was for the birth and death date of my Uncle Harold “Bus” Nunn.

Bus played football for Cornell University in the early 1930s.  On November 3, 1935, the New York Times headline read: “Cornell in Draw with Columbia, 7-7. Long pass to Nunn in Final Quarter and Stofer’s Kick Gain the Deadlock.”

Upon graduation, in 1936, Bus played pro football for the AFL team the Boston Shamrocks. His son tells me that players were paid $800 per game, but only if they played; those on the injury list or otherwise sidelined received no pay.

This inquiry prompted me to think about Bus. I wanted to know more about his life, and with the help of his son, I have sketched out Bus’s professional career, which includes his involvement with the Manhattan Project through his employment with DuPont. But that is a story for another day. 


  1. Hail Mary pass to Nunn! Seriously, very exciting to know your uncle was in pro football and then involved in smashing atoms. Can't wait for that latter story.

  2. Marian: I have been busy this week documenting this branch of the family. It is fascinating!!! My cousin's wife's parents were very close friends (and campaign manager) of Richard and Pat Nixon, which prompted me to borrow a couple of books from the library to fill in the lives of those folks. You just never know where the genealogy journey is going to take you.