Letters To Lee Remmel


Do you know what happened to the ACME Packing Company? (The second "owner" of the early Green Bay Packers) Did it go out of business, get sold or merge with another company, or is it still in existence today with a new name and ownership? – Dee, Antigo, Wis.

Dear Dee, To begin this answer at the very beginning, it was the Indian Packing Company under whose sponsorship a youthful Curly Lambeau in 1919 organized the football team that was to become the Green Bay Packers.

The Indian Packing Company, however, went out of business during that initial, 1919 season. It was promptly acquired by John Clair (chairman) and the Acme Packing Company. Acme then apparently operated the business into the late '20s, when it was purchased in 1929 and renamed "United Packers." The United firm, it appears, subsequently closed its doors in the early '30s and was never heard from again..

Lee, I remember reading about Don Hutson and the amount of money that he made in the 30s. Is it true that he had to have his salary divided between 2 banks in Green Bay because Packer brass feared it would cause an uproar (with the depression being in full force) if anyone at the banks knew the "real" amount that he was receiving? Is this true? And what did Don earn back then? Thank you very much! – Chris, Kaukauna, Wis.

Dear Chris, The story is true—for the very reason that you cited in posing your question. In fact, Hutson himself provided authentication of its accuracy during a press conference I had the privilege of hosting for him while working for the NFL during the week prior to Super Bowl XXII at San Diego in 1988.

Hutson, who had been chosen to flip the ceremonial Super Bowl coin for SB XXII's kickoff at Jack Murphy Stadium, was being interviewed on the Thursday before the game, and he confirmed that the Packers' board of directors had been so concerned that fans in Green Bay "would discover how much money I was making that they had my pay check divided between two local banks--I received one half of my salary from each bank."

Don added in editorial comment, "Now isn't that ridiculous."

Hutson also disclosed that his maximum salary as one of the greatest stars of his or any other era was $25,000 a year.

What is the name of the song that is played after a Packers touchdown? I'm a born & raised Packers fan from Kaukauna surrounded here by Lions Fans. – Dan, Lansing, Mich.

Dear Dan: The name of the song is "Bang on the Drum All Day" by Todd Rundgren. Mike McKenna, the coordinator of Packers game day entertainment at Lambeau Field, informed me that it made its debut at "Lambeau" in 1995.

"To my knowledge," he added, "we were the first team to play it. Since then, some high-powered offensive teams, such as the St. Louis Rams under Mike Martz and the Indianapolis Colts, have been playing the same song by Todd Rundgren, but they were copying us."

Would it be possible to tell me a little about the career of Charles Goldenberg and how he got the name Buckets and his election to the Packers Hall of Fame? – Lloyd, Albuquerque, New Mex.

Dear Lloyd, After two varsity seasons at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee-born Charles Robert "Buckets" Goldenberg signed on with the Packers in 1933 and developed into one of the most versatile performers in team annals. While eventually becoming one of the premier guards in the NFL, the 5-10, 220-pound Goldenberg also played blocking back, linebacker and defensive back over the span of a 13-year pro career. He was enshrined in the Packers Hall of Fame in 1973, the second year of its existence. Along the way, he was an all-pro selection in 1939 and 1942 and a Pro Bowl pick in '39.

Goldenberg reportedly acquired the nickname, "Buckets", from his teammates, allegedly in facetious reference to his imposing posterior.

I remember back in the late 70s and early 80s, a 'mascot' of sorts roaming the Lambeau Field stands, entertaining the fans, by the name of "Gang Green". For a number of years, he was even given field access. Who was he, and what ever became of him? Was he officially connected to the Packers organization in any way? – Bill, Brooklyn Park, Minn.

Dear Bill: As far as I can determine, the man who referred to himself as "Gang Green" was a resident of Oshkosh, Wis., named Robert Wagner. I believe he was employed as a delivery person in the workaday world. Your memory is correct regarding his association with the Packers. He did serve as "a mascot of sorts," with field access, during one season. As to "whatever became of him," my research indicates we have lost track of Robert.

Hello, Mr.Remmel. As a fan of the Packers I've always enjoyed it most when the Pack beat the Dallas Cowboys. My memory isn't what it once was so I was wondering how many times did the Lombardi Pack beat the Dallas Cowboys regular season and playoffs? Thank you. – Don, Hurst, Tex.

Dear Don: The Packers have had varied success against the Dallas Cowboys. They have compiled a .500 record against the Pokes in regular season competition, having won 10 games and lost 10. But Dallas has had the better of it in the postseason, winning four of six encounters.

In this connection, it probably should be noted that one of the two Packers back-to-back victories in NFL Championship Games came in the storied "Ice Bowl" of December 31, 1967, later voted the greatest game in pro football history.

The Cowboys have won the last four postseason meetings between the teams, 37-26 in an NFC Second Round Playoff in 1982, 27-17 in an NFC Divisional Playoff in 1993, 35-9 in an NFC Divisional Playoff in 1994, and 38-27 in an NFC Championship Game in 1995.

My father once told me that at a certain point in Chicago Bears history they almost folded but the Packers organization loaned or gave them money to keep the storied franchise alive -- my dad was born in 1935 and I am unsure when this was supposed to have occurred. – Donna, Oakdale, Minn.

Dear Donna:

The story your father told you is not without some substance. What Bears founder-coach George Halas told me about it when he was doing his book, "Halas by Halas" in the 1970s, was that at one point in the early 1930s, the Packers had loaned him $1,500 to meet his then weekly player payroll. He had given Packers officials his IOU for that amount, which he subsequently repaid. As he told the story, he was asking me to help him find the venerable IOU. I later was able to discover it was then in the files of the Pro Football Hall of Fame at Canton, Ohio. At my request, the HOF sent a photostatic copy of the IOU to Halas, who inserted it, along with the story behind it, in his book.

Hi Lee, when was the last game, if ever, in which the Packers wore their road uniforms for a regular season game at Lambeau? Thanks! - Frank, Los Angeles

Dear Frank, I haven't been able to come up with a definitive answer to your question, but I have found some related information. Equipment Manager Gordon "Red" Batty said, "We haven't worn white in "Lambeau" in my 14 years here. But Bryan Nehring (assistant equipment manager) has been here longer and may have other information from previous years)."

And Nehring did have an answer, although he wasn't able to identify the specific year involved. He recalled, "It was in the late '80s or early '90s, very hot, in the first three weeks of September, and we were playing Tampa Bay, who had Vinny Testaverde at quarterback. We decided to wear white because we wanted to see if the white jersey would be cooler than the green we normally would wear for a home game."

The jury apparently is still out on that specific question. "We haven't done it since that time (worn white jerseys at home)," Nehring said, "so I would guess it wasn't a big factor."

Continuing an association with the team that is more than 55 years old, Lee Remmel was named the first official Team Historian of the Green Bay Packers in February 2004. The former *Green Bay Press-Gazette reporter and Packers public relations director, Remmel will write regular columns for Packers.com as part of his new assignment.

In addition to those articles, Remmel will answer fan questions in a monthly Q&A column. To submit a question to Remmel, click here. *

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