Chiefs celebrate 50 years in Kansas City

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Thursday marks a very special anniversary for the Kansas City Chiefs football team.

On June 20, 1963, the Dallas Texans football team ditched the Lone Star State and moved the team to Kansas City, establishing our beloved Chiefs.

One local football legend who helped make that move possible was Jack Steadman.

In 1963, Steadman was the Chief's general manager and he made a bold move to convince Lamar Hunt, founder of the American Football League, and then-owner of the Dallas Texans, to ditch Dallas, shoo off any consideration of moving to New Orleans, and instead, find a city where the team could "control their destiny." That city was Kansas City.

"The thing I appreciated about Lamar is he never questioned me as to if I had ideas and thoughts," Steadman reminisced. "I was just a young guy when Lamar asked me to come full-time with him and I agreed to do it and at the time I didn't know whether the league would be successful or would fail."

The Dallas Texans were looking for a way to stop competing with the Dallas Cowboys for broadcast time and fan share on their home turf.

Then Kansas City Mayor Roe Bartle offered Municipal Stadium as a place to play.

Jack Steadman remembers working incognito in Kansas City for months as he worked to negotiate a deal.

As for the name "Chiefs"? Well, you can thank Steadman for that, too.

In order to show the team's gratitude for former Kansas City Mayor Bartle, they used Bartle's nickname "Chief".

"I tell people even though I'm retired, I bleed red and gold and I always will because the Chiefs have been such a big part of my life and my family," Steadman said.

"I just feel so blessed in so many ways to had the opportunity to work with Lamar and the opportunity he gave me to move the team to Kansas City," he added with a smile.

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