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Pro Football Hall of Fame to unveil exhibit honoring Browns history

Temporary exhibit titled “A Legacy Unleashed” set to open March 15


The Pro Football Hall of Fame will honor the storied history of the Cleveland Browns with a temporary exhibit titled "A Legacy Unleashed."

Set to open on March 15 and run through April 21, the multi-area exhibit will feature artifacts honoring the rich history of the team. Those artifacts will commemorate the franchise's eight championships – including a celebration of the anniversaries of the 1954 and 1964 NFL Championships – Paul Brown's influence in professional football to this day, as well as Marion Motley's and Bill Willis' reintegration of football as part of "The Forgotten Four."

"No fan base supports its team with more passion than Browns fans," Jim Porter, president of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, said in a press release. "This exhibit will give thousands of fans, not only in Northeast Ohio but across the country, an opportunity to celebrate the unique history of a franchise that dominated pro football from the moment it took the field in 1946. Rooting for the Browns – through the good times and the not-so-good times – has never wavered across the many generations of people who have wrapped themselves in the colors of orange and brown."

The Browns have a rich history over their time as an organization. Prior to joining the NFL in 1950 under head coach Paul Brown, the team's namesake, the Cleveland Browns dominated the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) from 1946-49, winning the title in all four of the league's existence.

Their success continued when the franchise moved to the NFL, winning the NFL Championship in their first season. The Browns reached the NFL Championship every year between 1950-55, claiming three titles in 1950, 1954 and 1955. The roster during this period featured nine players who were later inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame: Len Ford, Frank Gatski, Otto Graham, Lou Groza, Dante Lavelli, Mike McCormack, Mac Speedie, Motley and Willis. Cleveland made a run at the championship again in 1964 with future Hall of Famers Jim Brown, Gene Hickerson, Leroy Kelly and Paul Warfield, and claimed their fourth title.

There will be a "champions jewelry case" featured in the exhibit, displaying items that players and coaches received from winning one of the teams' eight titles, as well as the Bronze Busts of the 18 individuals who made their mark in pro football primarily with the Browns. Throughout the museum there will also be wall displays and monitors showing Browns-themed content to pay tribute to the top players and teams throughout the franchise's history.

During the exhibit's run time, there will be player appearances each of the six weekends as highlight to the programming schedule. Hall of Famers Joe DeLamielleure and Ozzie Newsome will cap the exhibit's run on April 19-20, and will participate in a "chalk talk" and a "team meal."

Former Browns Bernie Kosar and Peyton Hillis will take part in opening-weekend festivities March 16 and 17 that will include a chalk talk and an autograph session. Other players who have confirmed appearances in Canton are: Hanford Dixon, Felix Wright and Phil Dawson (March 22-23); Greg Pruitt (March 29-30); Josh Cribbs, Eric Metcalf, Dino Hall and Gerald "Ice Cube" McNeil (April 5-6); and Reggie Langhorne and Webster Slaughter (April 12-13).

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