The story behind the Chicago Cubs’ iconic logo


by - Correspondent -
The Cubs have one of the most famous logos in all of sports
The Cubs have one of the most famous logos in all of sports

The Chicago Cubs' season started with a bang this year with some testy moments against the Brewers. Currently, the ball club is 9-10 on the season.

The Cubs had a rough season last year so they seem hungry for wins this season. With the loss of some of the core members of the team that won the 2016 World Series, this team has a lot to prove.

Consider how well they've been doing in recent years before you decide it’s not worth it to bet on the Cubs this year. Last year’s performance could be put down as a fluke - a combination of factors that made it impossible for the team to play to their potential.

For bettors from many states, including Arizona, Connecticut, and Illinois, this is one of the first MLB seasons they’ll ever be able to bet on. Even if the Cubs don’t make it all the way to the World Series this year - it’s still fun to bet on your favorite team.

Using a betting guide to help inform you on the basics is worth considering, especially if you’re in one of the states that has just recently changed their laws and are new to sports betting. Betting guides will help you find a reputable sportsbook that offers fair odds and has the proper licenses to ensure that you and your bets are protected.

Even if you’re not betting - this season is one to watch. It will be the Chicago Cub’s 151st season, which may not be as historic as the 150th, but it’s still impressive. For now, though, let’s take a step back from the stats and the season, and instead take a moment to tell the story of the Chicago Cubs’ iconic badge.

The Name

The Chicago Cubs haven’t always been the Cubs. It would probably upset many White Sox fans to know that not only are they the newer team, they also aren’t even the first White Sox. The Cubs were originally known as the White Stockings when the team was founded in 1870.

In the 1890s, they were briefly known as the Chicago Colts and then from 1898-1902, they became the Chicago Orphans. This was in reference to the loss of Adrian “Cap” Anson, the player who captained the team to six National League pennant wins and had also been the team’s manager and part owner.

In 1903, the team was nicknamed the Cubs but it didn’t become the official team name until 1907. The name initially had nothing to do with baby bears. It was given to the team because after many experienced players had left, the team was mainly made up of very young players.

The name must have been lucky (initially!) because in 1908, the Chicago Cubs won their first World Series.

Versions of the logo

The Chicago Cubs haven’t always had the iconic red and blue logo of C with UBS nestled in it, surrounded by a blue circle. Just like most professional sports teams that have been around for more than a few decades, their logo has changed many times.

The earliest logos embraced the name. They featured a blue C with a bear standing upright and holding a baseball inside of the C. The bear was initially brown and later changed to blue. It was an utterly adorable logo – but perhaps not intimidating enough.

The next several versions featured a more stylized C. Rather than a simple curved letter, the new C resembled a wishbone. The 1916 version featured a walking bear. From 1919-1926, the bear was removed in favor of UBS inside the C, in the earliest iteration of the modern logo.

Alternate logo

Maybe it wasn’t the Curse of the Billy Goat that kept the Chicago Cubs from a World Series win for all those years, maybe it actually was dropping the bear from the badge. Since 1945, the team has had some variation of a large C with UBS inside.

The main changes to the logo have been to the circle that surrounds the letters. It has been a thin blue outline that framed the letters (1946-1956), a thin blue line circling the logo (1957-1978) and now it is a thick blue line circling the C and UBS (1979-today). It has become a truly classic logo.

For fans who miss the bear, however, there is always the alternate badge. Since 1972, the team has had a secondary logo that puts the bear cub front and center. The 1972-78 version was a stylized cub face in blue and beige.

From 1979-1996, the two versions of the alternate logo featured a grumpy cub face in blue, surrounded by a red circle, a nice reverse of the official logo’s colors. The current version has a grumpy blue cub walking over a red C. Every fan has their favorite version but they’re all cuties.

The Chicago Cubs’ logo might not have any dramatic hidden stories behind it - but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a story worth telling. The design work that has gone into the badge over the last 100 years shows how effective it can be to slowly and carefully work on a design.

In the end, as it is with the Cubs’ badge, you can finish up with something that is a true icon.

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