Discover the history behind the Steelers dynasty and celebrate the team’s six Super Bowl championships.
Professional football traces its roots to Pittsburgh when in 1892, the Allegheny Athletic Association football team paid former Yale University All-American guard Pudge William “Pudge” Heffelfinger $500 to play against the Pittsburgh Athletic Club. Forty years later, Art Rooney Sr. founded Pittsburgh’s first professional franchise, first known as the Pirates and later renamed the Steelers. Today, the Steelers’ six Super Bowl trophies are tied for the most among any NFL team, helping to secure an unmatched legacy of professional football in Pittsburgh.
The Home of the Immaculate Reception
The Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum is the home of the Immaculate Reception year-round and features a lifelike figure of Franco Harris making the catch, Harris’ cleats from the play, the Three Rivers Stadium field turf where it happened, as well as other 1970s Steelers artifacts.
To celebrate the golden anniversary of the greatest play in NFL history in 2022, the Sports Museum has added rare and never-before-seen objects and historic images to the Super Steelers exhibition. These artifacts examine the life and career of Harris, the New Jersey native and Penn State star who captivated Pittsburgh with his hard-running style and intensity during his rookie season in 1972.
These new Franco Harris artifacts (and more!) are now on view for a limited time:
- Franco’s championship rings from Super Bowls IX, X, XIII, and XIV, along with a “Ring of Excellence” given to him by the Pro Football Hall of Fame
- Football jersey from Rancocas Valley High School (N.J.)
- Franco’s own “Franco’s Italian Army” helmet
- NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Award
- Pro Football Hall of Fame jacket
From Friday Night Lights to Steeler Sundays
Experience the region’s proud football legacy at the Sports Museum. Explore how Western Pa. became a hot bed for high school and college football, producing nearly 50 professional quarterbacks along with four Heisman Trophy winners and dozens of All-Americans. See game-worn uniforms and equipment from the Steelers’ six Super Bowl championships. Try on a Super Bowl ring, make a perfect pass to Lynn Swann and John Stallworth, and wave your Terrible Towel in a special section dedicated to the passionate fan base known as Steelers Nation.
- Cradle of Quarterbacks: Is it something in the water? Western Pennsylvania has produced nearly 50 professional quarterbacks, more than any region in the country. From Johnny Unitas to Joe Montana to Dan Marino, discover what makes the region a sanctuary for signal callers.
- Franco Harris’s championship rings from Super Bowls IX, X, XIII, and XIV, along with a “Ring of Excellence” given to him by the Pro Football Hall of Fame
- Women in Professional Football: Football isn’t just for the boys. Learn about professional women’s football in the region and see artifacts from the Pittsburgh Powderkegs and Passion teams.
Artifact Spotlight: Franco's Super Bowl IX Ring
Out of the 333 total offensive yards the Steelers generated in Super Bowl IX, Franco Harris accounted for a record 158 of them – more than the entire Minnesota Viking offense. He scored the first of two touchdowns in the Steelers’ 16-6 victory and was named Most Valuable Player. This ring, on display in the Sports Museum, was made by Jostens for the franchise’s first Super Bowl victory.