Honor the history of the Birmingham Hammers - Name the new USL club for them
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In 2013, two men had a couple of beers at a local brewery and began to dream about watching a local soccer team in the Magic City.
Not long after that night, the dream became a business plan. And the two men became a group of five owners.
A few weeks later, that business idea had a logo, and the owners hosted a couple of match-viewing parties at local bars. They even sponsored a friendly match or two between two southern teams.
Before long, that new logo had a supporter’s group of men and women called the Magic City Brigade that believed in the vision that Birmingham would one day have their own soccer club.
And just about 2 years after those first beers, the ownership group announced that the Birmingham Hammers would form a team and hold an exhibition season.
Between 2015 and 2017 – the Birmingham Hammers would hire a couple of coaching staffs, train hundreds of players, and play approximately 30 matches, all while growing their fanbase from a few hundred to a few thousand.
Children and adults alike purchased jerseys, hats, socks, and scarves. Songs were sung from the stands. Goals were scored. Yellow cards were issued. Blood was drawn, injuries were suffered, and jubilation after victory was felt by many.
This is the story of the Birmingham Hammers.
You see, it’s not just a story about a couple of guys over a few beers creating something from nothing. It’s much more nuanced than that.
It’s a story about a supporters group dedicating many hours to the hope that soccer would come alive in Birmingham.
It’s the story about thousands of fans investing their hard-earned money into the idea that Birmingham would one day have a professional club.
It’s the story about hundreds of prospective players putting their talent on display and their health on the line for a soccer club, for a city.
It’s the story of many coaches sacrificing their time with work or family to be on the soccer pitch five nights a week.
The Birmingham Hammers were a grassroots, local movement in every respect of the meaning.
The Birmingham Hammers aren’t just a soccer club. They are Birmingham itself.
And now that Birmingham has been granted a USL franchise, the new club has to decide what their new name will be. It’s quite possible, like many recently announced professional clubs around the country, that the new USL-Birmingham ownership group is considering a simplified, generic, Euro-centric club name like “FC Birmingham”.
But that’s not us! That’s not what built the foundation for professional soccer in our city.
The Hammers built that foundation and I believe our new USL club should respect that history.
We urge the new USL Birmingham Franchise to SUPPORT LOCAL SOCCER!
If you believe that the new USL-Birmingham franchise should honor the history and accomplishments of the Birmingham Hammers by keeping the name of the original club, please consider signing this petition and sharing it with your fellow-soccer fans. With enough signatures, the new USL ownership group will see just how important the Hammers were and still are to all of us.
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