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National Football League
The Baltimore Colts, founded in 1953, played in the National Football League (NFL) from 1953 to 1983. The team was named the Colts for Baltimore's rich history of horse racing. The Colts franchise moved to Indianapolis between the 1983 and 1984 seasons.
National Football League (1953–present)
Speed Blue, White
The Band that Wouldn't Die
National Football League (1996–present)
Purple, Black, Metallic Gold, White
Baltimore Colts relocation controversy
The Band That Wouldn't Die is a sports documentary film released in 2009 and created and directed by Barry Levinson as a part of ESPN's 30 for 30 documentary series. The film follows the story of Baltimore's Marching Ravens, a marching band that has supported three separate American football franchises since 1947 and witnessed the controversial relocation of the National Football League's (NFL) Baltimore Colts franchise to Indianapolis in 1984.
The marching band was founded on September 7, 1947 to support the Baltimore Colts of the All-America Football Conference. The team folded after the 1950 season, but the band continued to play together until a new Baltimore Colts franchise was founded in 1953 to play at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. The Colts relocated to Indianapolis on March 29, 1984, leaving the Baltimore Colts' Marching Band without a team once again. During the twelve-year period in which Baltimore had no football team, the marching band stayed together, continuing to practice every week in hopes that a new team would arrive. The band went to other stadiums to play, the first being Art Modell's Cleveland Browns—the future Baltimore Ravens—and also participated in events such as parades, playing the Baltimore Colts' Fight Song. When the Browns relocated to Baltimore in 1996 and became the Ravens, the band began to support the team, their third in the city. The Baltimore Colts' Marching Band retained their name until 1998, when they renamed themselves Baltimore's Marching Ravens.
The Baltimore Colts relocation to Indianapolis was a successful effort by then-Colts owner Robert Irsay to move the National Football League (NFL) team from Baltimore, Maryland to Indianapolis, Indiana completely unannounced and in the wee hours of March 29, 1984 after years of lobbying for a new stadium to replace the inadequate Memorial Stadium. The franchise's move continues to embitter many Baltimore natives decades afterward]dubious [, and would have a lasting impact on the NFL, including another controversial relocation twelve years later.