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Did you know that George Preston Marshall once challenged President Kennedy to a debate? Or that the Redskins nearly traded Darrell Green to the Broncos in 1989? Or that George Allen was such a wheeler-dealer that he once was fined for trading away the same draft pick multiple times?
Rich Tandler wanted to come up with the best way to tell stories like these and other interesting events that happened along the way in the history of the Washington Redskins. After a dozen years of work, he has done it.
The result of Tandler's efforts was The Redskins Chronicle, A Journey Through the History of the Washington Redskins 1937-2008. The book has an original account of every game during that time period (a total of 1,040 games). But, as they say in the infomercials, wait, there's more.
Woven among the game accounts is the story of what went on between the games. The hirings and firings, the fruitful drafts and the blockbuster trades, the big events and the shakeups at the top of the organization all are written about in the pages of the book. Those elements are important in relating rich history of the franchise but the little things that happened along the way also help to paint the picture.
"In The Redskins Chronicle I included a lot of anecdotes, things that happened that give us insights into personalities and about the organization," said Tandler. "For example, there's a story in there about Joe Gibbs during his first stint with the team fretting about a building that's about to be constructed next to Redskins Park. He worries that the opposition would have a spying perch thanks to the new neighbor. Then he admits that he can't tell how many stories the building will be from the blueprints. It's vintage Joe Gibbs."
Ray Flaherty is another Hall of Fame Redskins coach and you can see why if you read The Redskins Chronicle. As recounted in the book, he liked to put his players through tough Monday practices--the day after a win!
Tandler's first book, The Redskins From A to Z, was published in 2002 and it was composed of original accounts of every game the team played from when it came to Washington in 1937 through the 2001 season.
That book, the first of its kind, was wildly popular among hard-core Redskins fans and members of the media found it to be a valuable resource. But Tandler took a good look at it and, while justifiably proud of having crafted a collection of over 900 game accounts, he knew it needed more.
"It was like I'd built a great, big house but it wasn't furnished. There was nothing on the walls, no carpets," Tandler said. "A to Z was a good book, it was functional, but it wasn't a finished product."
The Redskins Chronicle is that finished product.
The book's mix of game accounts and anecdotes is difficult to envision. That's why there is a good selection of excerpts available at the book's website, RedskinsChronicle.com.
"This is a unique book and I know that fans will want to try before they buy," said Tandler. "I have several seasons worth of excerpts posted on the site so that folks can see what the book is all about."
The Redskins Chronicle is published by Tandler's company, Game by Game Sports Media. Fans who want to be among the very first to get their hands on The Redskins Chronicle and take advantage of these pre-publication specials can go to RedskinsChronicle.com.
Tandler has been an avid follower of the Redskins since 1966. The Redskins Chronicle is his fourth book following The Redskins from A to Z, Gut Check: The Complete History of Coach Joe Gibbs' Washington Redskins, and Hokie Games: Virginia Tech Football Game by Game 1945-2006. He is available for interviews, Q&A's, and online chats about the book and about any and all topics concerning the Washington Redskins, past and present. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 804-647-6527.