Online Resources Guide

There are a number of resources available online to assist you in researching US soccer history. Here are a few to help get you started.

Early Codes, Guides and Annuals

Early guides and annuals are useful resources for understanding the evolution of the Laws of the Game and for the dispersal of those Laws in the United States. The first US publisher of the Laws of the Game was New York City’s Beadle and Adams in 1866. In 1871, New York City’s Peck & Snyder published a comprehensive collection of the various football codes then played under in Britain, compiled and edited by Charles W. Alcock, Honorary Secretary of England’s FA. A PDF copy of the Beadle book is available courtesy of Northern Illinois University. A PDF copy of the Peck & Snyder book is available courtesy of the Library of Congress. A PDF copy of the Dominion Football Association of Canada Rules and Constitution published in 1879 as part of Robertson’s Cheap Series and based upon the rules of the Scottish FA is available via Canadian and the Canadian Research Knowledge Network.

Spalding Guides

The Spalding Guide was the yearbook for American soccer between 1904 and 1924 and contains a wealth of information on local and national topics. The Spalding Guide of a given year of publication covers events of the preceding season (e.g., the 1910 Spalding Guide covers the 1909-1910 season). PDF copies of the Spalding Guide are available for download courtesy of the Library of CongressSouthern Illinois University Edwardsville, HathiTrust, and SASH. Click on the institution’s acronym in the list below to access the desired download.

Bill Graham Guides

A kind of mid-20th century equivalent to the Spalding Guides edited and compiled by legendary Scottish-born US soccer journalist  Bill Graham, the first edition of what are now referred to as the Graham Guides was published in 1948 as the U.S. Annual Soccer Guide and Record: Season 1947-48 with Guide for 1948-49. Graham published eight further editions under various titles through 1956. In 1960, the United States Soccer Football Association revived the guide with Graham as editor. Graham edited a total of nine USSFA-published editions under various titles before retiring ahead of 1970 edition. After Graham’s retirement, Clive Toye, Dave Hirshey, Francisco Marcus and John McKeon edited subsequent editions through the final 1973 edition. All told, 22 editions were published between 1948 and 1973, containing some 3,400 pages of historical records.

Thanks to the generosity of donors to SASH’s Graham Guides Digitization Project  in 2023, all 22 editions are available for download here on the SASH website.

FIFA World Cup Technical Reports

World Cup technical reports provide a wealth of information on the tournament beginning with the 1966 World Cup in England for the men’s tournament and 1991 for the women’s tournament. Click on the desired part or section of each report in the lists below to access the desired download.


Reports on the men’s Confederations Cup (1997-), U-20 World Cup (1977-), U-17 World Cup (1985-), Club World Cup (2000-), Futsal (1989-), Beach Soccer (2008-), and Boys Youth Olympic Football Tournament (2010-) can also be found on the FIFA website.


Reports on the women’s U-20 World Cup (2002-), U-17 World Cup (2008-), and Girls Youth Olympic Football Tournament (2010-) can also be found on the FIFA website.

Olympic Reports

Reports by the International Olympic Committee, the U.S. Olympic Committee, and FIFA contain summaries of the football tournament. Below are links to official reports through 2008 archived by the LA84 Foundation on the tournaments the U.S. Men’s National Team participated in (1924, 1928, 1936, 1948, 1952, 1956, 1972, 1984, 1988; US U-23 MNT in 1992, 1996, 2000, 2008) and those the U.S. Women’s National Team participated in (1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016). Click on the desired part or volume of each report in the list below to access the desired download.

The LA84 Foundation Digital Library Collections is the source of the above listed Olympic reports. Among the useful resources available there are The Sporting Life Collection (published 1883-1917) and back issues of Soccer America (2000-2003).

Online newspaper resources

The digitization of newspaper archives has made information about US soccer history more accessible than ever. Check your local newspaper’s website for archive information. Public and university libraries also have access to newspaper archive databases such as America’s Historical Newspapers (from NewsBank) and ProQuest Historical Newspapers. Some libraries also host digital archives of local newspapers that are otherwise unavailable such as the Newark Public Library, the Fall River Public Library, and the Pawtucket Public Library. You can also subscribe to a resource such as,, and Free online newspaper resources are also available such as the Old Fulton County New York Postcards website (alternate search interface here), the Google Newspaper Archive, and the Chronicling American Newspapers database from the Library of Congress. State universities sometimes also provide digital archives online for newspapers within their state. Some examples include these archives covering California, Illinois, Oregon, and Washington. The Library of Congress also maintains a list of newspaper archives.

Genealogical Websites

Genealogical research via websites such as and are important resources for piecing together the story of historical players and administrators through census records; birth, marriage and death records; military records; immigration records, and more.

Museum Databases

Look for online databases for museums and historical societies to help find items in collections. Finding guides will also help you prepare for in-person visits. PastPerfect Online allows you to search more than 1,000 collections and nearly 8 million collection records.

Newspaper Photo Morgues

While the rights and permissions, not to mention the costs, to reproduce images vary, newspaper photo morgues — the archive of a newspaper’s photographs — can be useful sources for images. The Library of Congress has a list of public institutions that host newspaper photo morgues.

American Soccer History Archives

An extensive website, now defunct, on US (as well as Canadian) soccer history that includes year-by-year summaries (1909-2011), as well as many articles on a wide range of topics. Click here to view the legacy version of the website, now hosted by SASH.

Canadian Soccer History

The history of soccer in the US has intersected with Canada since the sports earliest days in North America. Canadian Soccer History, a site based on the work of Colin Jose and maintained by Les Jones, is an essential resource. Other sites focus on particular aspects of Canadian soccer history. The British Columbia Soccer Hall of Fame and Heritage Archive website has emerged as a model for the presentation of soccer history and archival materials, including more than 1100 documents and 2400 images. Run by Christian Hesle, focuses on the history of the National Soccer League (1926-1997), the Canadian Soccer League (1987-1992), and the league that resulted from the merger of the NSL and CSL, the Canadian National Soccer League (1993-1997). Also covered on the site are the Eastern Canada Professional Soccer League (1961-1966), Canadian Professional Soccer League (1983) and Toronto & District Soccer League.

National Soccer Hall of Fame Player and Builder Bios

Capsule biographies of players and others inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame are available here on the SASH website, as well as the US Soccer Federation websiteYou can also view eligibility and election criteria for the Player, Veteran Player, and Builder ballots, as well as the Colin Jose Media Award.

Also available here on the SASH site are complete listings of the US Men’s National Team and the US Women’s National Team results. contains a large and expanding amount of information on the US Open Cup from the founding of the tournament in 1913.

Local, State, and Regional soccer history sites

Soccer history is living history. It involves not only deep dives into events long ago but the documenting recent events. Look for online resources in your area such as the Wisconsin Soccer Central website.

Soccer Almanac

At Soccer Almanac, Dan Creel curates a deep and expanding collection of clubs and league records from the 1890s to the present.

Keeper Notes

Jen Cooper’s has extensive information on the NWSL and US Women’s National Team.

NASL Jerseys and

While focused on team jerseys of the original North American Soccer League, also has very useful roster information. has attendance information for the original NASL as well as other US professional soccer leagues.

Historic Soccer Videos

For years, was a go-to destination with its extensive archive of video recordings of NASL, US National Team, and other matches but Brett has retired the site. With a little searching, you can find a wealth of historic footage on YouTube. Jennifer Cooper’s @WoSoNostalgia site is an excellent repository of US Women’s National team, WUSA and College Cup games.

Wayback Machine

The internet has made soccer history research easier than ever. But websites aren’t forever and when they are updated or go offline, the valuable resources they once contained can be lost. Sometimes what was lost can be found on the Wayback Machine, an initiative of the Internet Archive.

Social Media

Whether it be the accounts of individuals, organizations, or groups, look for soccer history information on social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. For example, the American Soccer League group on Facebook might be able to help with questions about the ASL.

Prepared and maintained by Ed Farnsworth