We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

Were Footballs Ever Made of Pig Skin?

By Kevin Hellyer
Updated Mar 06, 2024
Our promise to you
Sports&Hobbies is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At Sports&Hobbies, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Now that another football season has ended, we can let you in on a little secret. If you’ve been referring to footballs as “pigskins” all these years, know that this terminology is simply the product of American slang.

Footballs were never made out of pig skins. Early footballs were made from animal bladders, including those from cows, deer, and sometimes even pigs. When a bladder was inflated, it was mostly round. These bladder balls were later covered with leather of some type, though not ordinarily pig skin. Footballs changed dramatically in the mid-1860s after Charles Goodyear invented vulcanized rubber, which made a better bladder.

Kick around these football facts:

  • Since 1955, official NFL footballs have been made in Ada, Ohio. Each Wilson football is made with cowhide from Kansas, Nebraska, or Iowa. The leather is treated with a "top secret football weather-optimizing tanning recipe."

  • The correct term to describe the shape of a gridiron football is "prolate spheroid."

  • The oldest football (soccer ball) still in existence was discovered in the roof of Stirling Castle, Scotland, in 1981. The ball is made of leather (possibly from deer) and a pig's bladder, and it is thought to have been constructed around 1550.

Sports&Hobbies is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

Sports&Hobbies, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Sports&Hobbies, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.