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When did they start selling jerseys as merchandise?


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Does anyone know when they officially started selling jerseys as merchandise?

I've seen some footage of late 80's/early 90's games with people in the stands wearing the teams' jerseys, but they could have started earlier than that.

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I bought my first one at a retail store in the early '80's when I was in high school, so sometime before 1983.

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Weird. How come it appears not many people would wear them to games?

Because people dressed differently then. Look at video from the early years through about the 1960s ... suits, ties, dresses to sporting events. Those days were over by the late 70s and early 80s but it wasn't the anything goes of today.

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At least the 1940's based on Roch Carrier's "The Hockey Sweater". Obviosuly not to the level they are now but back then they were ordered through the Eaton's Catalogue

Yeah, I saw that a couple weeks ago, actually (anticlimactic ending much? :(), I just forgot about it.

But yeah, I saw an image of a catalog from the 50's or something like that with actual sweaters...that's cool that they were accessible by fans, then...I wonder how they differed from the regular sweaters they wore.

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Here is my article on the evolution of the jersey as something to be merchandised to fans.

http://thirdstringgoalie.blogspot.com/2011/02/fan-apparel-then-and-now.html

I bought my first hockey jersey, a North Stars jersey, around 1982 or 83. I had my driver's license by then and got a coupon for a discount on the jersey when I filled the car up with gas near the community college I was attending.

It was out of stock and I had to wait ages for it to arrive. Then the local sporting good store didn't use the right font for the number I had put on the back, a battle I've now been fighting for 30 years! Ha!

I also recall the CCM replica Soviet jerseys arriving in stores, much to my shock, around 1988 or 1989. They were the precursor to the CCM 550's and were thin as toilet paper and ran small in size compared to the 550's.

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