A blog dedicated to chronicling the history of SC Green White, a soccer club founded in Chicago in 1956.

Saturday, May 19, 2012


As 1964 came to end, a new Green White tradition was born. Wilhelm Franz wrote the very first Green White Newsletter. It wasn't anything fancy--just a few pages of information about Green White written in German on Green White stationery. It was called "Gruen Weiss Vor..."

Here is the translation of Franz's introductory paragraph:
“As most of you realize, back in our homeland nearly every sport club of every shape and size has their own newsletter or newspaper. Why shouldn’t we have one too? Starting something up like this is difficult, so it may appear a bit primitive at first, but with a little work and effort we just might be able to create something that hasn’t yet existed for our club. If our project is well received, and all of our financial questions are answered, hopefully we can even transform this into something nobler. We’ve been thinking about the cost of doing something like this. If we sent it out monthly in the mail to each of our members, that would cost about sixty cents in postage. Once we factor in the cost of paper and various other expenses, we’ve been thinking of charging one extra dollar to your membership fees for those of you interested in receiving this newsletter. How does that sound to you?”

Sounds like a deal.

The highlight of the newsletter had to be Willi's acerbic take on the team's performance on the field. This is the way he described the "Game of the Month"...
The weather was terrible on November 22, 1964, when the Green White 11 went up against the Red-White-Greens. On the field for Green White that day; Strumberger, Wambach, Wirs, Laxgang, Kovacs, Rosmanitz, Zimmer, G. Kaempf (photo), A. Kaempf, Winter, and Hrbacek. About fifty frozen spectators were on hand to witness this game at Kilbourn Park. The Hungarians overwhelmed our boys in the first minute with their lightning fast attack. But even though they showed clear superiority in their attack, they were unable to overcome our defense. They went to the locker rooms at half time with only a 1-0 edge.

During halftime our goalie Strumberger asked to play in front—“I guarantee I’ll score a goal,” he said. To which our Maria Zimmer quickly replied: “You already scored one.” Our good Stefan decided to spend the second half freezing in our own goal after all. In the second half Adi Kaempf took advantage of a major defensive mistake by the Hungarians, and broke the ice with our first goal of the game. After another unfortunate handball in the box, Joe Laxgang put us in the lead, by easily scoring the penalty kick. The third goal was probably the nicest one of the day for us. From about twenty meters out, Gottfried Winter took a free kick and beautifully placed it in the corner past the goaltender. Green White was victorious 3-1.

In 1964 Green White came closer to winning the championship of the first division than ever before. Green White actually ended the season in first place because of goal difference, but because that wasn’t recognized by league rules, they had to play a deciding game against the Lions. Green White lost the game 2-1. Once again we were saying “wait ‘til next year.”

Green White Off the Field

The president of Green White for 1964 was Fritz Becker, back to his original position with the club. The rest of the board were as follows...

Vice President—Adam Wambach (photo)
Protocol Secretary—Hans Bittenbinder
Secretary—Wilhelm Franz
Treasurer—Eckhard Kaempfer
Manager of the First Team—Horst Melcher
Manager of the Reserves—Klaus Killian
Manager of the Juniors—Alex Jordan
Manager of the Boys & First Festival President—Alex Gyurko
Delegates to the League—Adam Harjung and Walter Klaus
Midwest Delegates—Anton Koeppinger and Nick Willer
Karteifuehrer & League Committee Chairman—Franz Stadler
League Committee Assessors—Robert Schurz and Adam Kaempf

At the board elections in December, a new division of Green White was also formed; the Green White Ladies club. The ladies would be very active over the next few years organizing events for the adults and the ever growing brood of Green White children. The following women were all part of it on that first very first night: Lore Willer, Maria Zimmer, Herta Melcher, Hedy Klaus, Hilde Kaempfer, Hilde Kilian, Helen Zimeer, and Herta Franz.

Green White Poetry

At the Green White Christmas party Eckhard Kaempfer (shown here on the left in his final player pass in 1964) and Horst Melcher recited a poem they had written about the year 1964. (The entire poem in it's original German will be published in our forthcoming commemorative book).

Here's a little taste of it...

The year is once again gone,
So we look at what has gone wrong,
In indoor we were in fourth place,
In outdoor we lost that last race,

The season ended a sensational way,
We all remember what happened that day,
You can still hear the noise in the hall,
Caused by full-throated screams from us all,

But when the game ended, and our time had run out,
Many club members left, and went home to their house,
But the core of our team couldn't wait,
We knew there was reason to celebrate.

The poem goes on to mention by name: Georg Kaempf, Nick Willer, Joe Laxgang, Adam Wambach, Stefan Strumberger, Manfred Kovacs, Stefan Laxgang, Gottfried Winter, Adam Kaempf, Stefan Zimmer, Jack Rosmanitz, the first ladies team (especially Lore, who shot all the Tore), Walter Klaus, and Joe Hertl. Each of them get their own playful paragraphs.

And it closes with the following verse...

Our work is now to prepare,
A wide audience will certainly be there
Greatness is for what we will strive,
In our wonderful soccer-rich lives

Green White Babies Born in 1964

*Linda Blaas

*Linda Hertl

*Heidi Bittenbinder

*Heidi Kilian

*Cindy Kaempfer (photo)

*Toni Harjung

*Diana Kraemer

1964 In Pop Culture

~The #1 pop hit of the year was “I Want To Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles

~The #1 TV show of the year was “Bonanza

~The Academy Award for Best Picture went to “My Fair Lady

1964 Chicago

~When the Beatles arrived at Midway airport on September 5, 1964 for their first ever visit to Chicago, they were greeted by a mob of 5000 screaming teenagers. Chicago Tribune sportswriter Dave Condon chose to cover the Beatles instead of the Cubs. His review of their concert: "No, we wouldn't have missed it. Not because the Beatle noise beats anything that can't be stirred up around the piano bar at the Singapore, but because the show gave us a chance to be proud of the juveniles, who are pretty much maligned in this turbulent age."

~In June of 1964, during their first US tour, the Rolling Stones came to Chicago to record a record at Chess Records. Chess Records was located at 2120 S. Michigan Avenue, an address immortalized by the name of their record. The tour was going badly. Bill Wyman called it "a disaster." They had made an appearance on Dean Martin's variety show, and good ol' Deano mocked their hair and their performance.

~The abandoned Illinois & Michigan Canal provided a convenient right-of-way through the city for the Stevenson Expressway (I-55), which opened in 1964.

Coming next month: 1965. The First Sport, Radio & Press Ball, and Green White goes up against the U.S. National team striker, Willi Roy.

As always, if you have any thing to add or correct in this month’s installment, please drop me a line at amishrick@yahoo.com. I consider this a group project, and a work in progress, so we can add and subtract until we get it all exactly correct. If you have photos you’d like to contribute, please do.