William F. Knox
January 29, 1885|
December 21, 1975 (aged 90)|
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|First-team All-American, 1906|
William Francis Knox (January 29, 1885 – December 21, 1975) was an American football player and coach and lawyer. He played college football for Yale University and was selected as a first-team All-American halfback in 1906. He was the head coach of the 1907 Yale football team which finished the season with a record of 9–0–1. He later became an attorney and was a founder and member of the Pittsburgh law firm of Moorhead & Knox.
Knox was born in Connellsville, Pennsylvania in 1885. His father Alfred C. Knox was a Pennsylvania native and a banker. His mother Annie E. Knox was also a Pennsylvania native. At the time of the 1900 United States Census, Knox was living in Ben Avon, a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with his parents and three sisters, Louise, Juliet, and Mary. His uncle was Philander C. Knox, who served as the United States Attorney General (1901–1904), United States Senator (1904–1909, 1917–1921), and United States Secretary of State (1909–1913).
Yale and University of Pittsburgh
After graduating from Yale, he returned in the fall of 1907 as Yale's head football coach. Knox led the 1907 Yale football team to an undefeated season with a record of 9–0–1. The team's only setback was a 0–0 tie against Army.
During the period from 1899 to 1912, Yale had 14 different head football coaches in 14 years – despite compiling a combined record of 127–11–10 in those years. During that 14-year span, the Yale football team has also been recognized as the national championship team by one or more of the major national championship selectors on seven occasions – 1900 (Billingsley, Helms, Houlgate, National Championship Foundation, Parke Davis), 1901 (Parke Davis), 1902 (Parke Davis), 1905 (Parke Davis, Whitney), 1906 (Billingsley, Parke Davis, Whitney), 1907 (Billingsley, Helms, Houlgate, National Championship Foundation, Parke Davis, Whitney), and 1909 (Billingsley, Helms, Houlgate, National Championship Foundation, Parke Davis).
Knox later attended the University of Pittsburgh law school from which he graduated in 1910. At the time of the 1910 United States Census, Knox was living with his parents and three sisters at the family home on Brighton Road in Ben Avon.
Legal career and family
After graduating from law school, Knox had a long career as a lawyer in Pittsburgh. In 1917, he formed a law partnership with William S. Moorhead, Sr., the father of William S. Moorhead, who later served as a U.S. Congressman from 1959 to 1981. Their firm, Moorhead and Knox, became a prestigious Pittsburgh law firm. Knox remained active in the firm until his retirement in 1973.
At the time of the 1920 United States Census, Knox was living with his wife, Ruth T. Knox, and son, William F. Knox, Jr., at 6923 Brighton Road in Ben Avon, Pennsylvania. The family also had a live-in maid, Mary Kramer.
In a draft registration card completed in 1942, Knox indicated that he was living at 8 Robin Road in Pittsburgh and that he was a member of the firm of Moorhead & Knox with offices in the Oliver Building in Pittsburgh.
Head coaching record
|Yale Bulldogs (Independent) (1907)|
|Carnegie Tech Tartans (Independent) (1908)|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title or championship game berth|
- Draft registration card for William F. Knox, born January 29, 1885. Ancestry.com. U.S. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942 [database on-line]. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, D.C.; State Headquarters: Pennsylvania; Microfilm Series: M1951; Microfilm Roll: 166.
- Census Record for Alfred C. Knox and family (listing William's birth as January 1885). Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Census Place: Ben Avon, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: T623_1365; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 343.
- "Yale Wants Hutchinson to Coach" (PDF). The New York Times. February 21, 1907.
- "Walter Camp Football Foundation".
- "Yale Will Depend On Coy's Kicking To Win". The Washington Reporter. November 14, 1907.
- "BROWN AND GLASS TO COACH AT YALE". The Hartford Courant. October 1, 1907.
- "1907 Yale football team". College Football Data Warehouse.
- "Yale Year-by-Year Results". College Football Data Warehouse.
- Official 2009 NCAA Division I Football Records Book (PDF). Indianapolis, IN: The National Collegiate Athletic Association. August 2009. p. 78. Retrieved June 23, 2011.
- "Lawyer William Knox, YMCA Leader, Dies". The Pittsburgh Press. December 22, 1975.
- Census entry for Alfred C. Knox and family. Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Census Place: Ben Avon, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: T624_1292; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 0014; Image: 1250; FHL Number: 1375305.
- "Yale Football Media Guide" (PDF). Yale University. 2003. Retrieved January 12, 2018.
- Census entry for William F. Knox in family, attorney, age 35, born in Pennsylvania, with parents born in Pennsylvania. Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Census Place: Ben Avon, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: T625_1509; Page: 18B; Enumeration District: 17; Image: 539.
- Census entry for William F. Knox, lawyer, age 45, and family. Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Census Place: Pittsburgh, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1977; Page: 12A; Enumeration District: 220; Image: 450.0.
- "Yale Student Killed in 200-Foot Fall Climbing Rail Trestle" (PDF). The New York Times. November 2, 1936.