A Presentaion by

Charlie Hennigan 

 & Ronald E. Barlow 


I got to meet Mr. Hennigan at the Northwestern 2006 homecoming.  My dad was on the team with him.  According to daddy (Bobby Tackett, #67), he and Charlie were best friends at that time.  I got to see his superbowl ring, and talk to him a bit, and he is a very decent guy.  During the reunion (their team’s 50th), someone gave a copy of the Northwestern’s team photo of 1956 to the team members there.  Thought you might like a copy of it.

If I see him again, I intend to ask him how he convinced his Pentecostal mother to let him play at Northwestern, who are “The Demons”.  After going to the homecoming game, the next weekend at church, I informed my church class that the previous week, I had been surrounded by thousands and thousands of demons.

Bob Tackett, Jr.

1965 Tops Card

Dr. Charlie Hennigan
Charlie Hennigan of the Houston Oilers
All-Time All-AFL Team
American Football League Hall of Fame
Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame
NCAA Hall of Fame
5-Time AFL All-Star
4-Time AFL All-Pro
One of NFL’s 300 All-Time Greatest Players
1960 AFL Champions
1961 AFL Champions
Scored 1st Touchdown in Houston Oilers History
Had 26 100-yard receiving games in his 7-year Oiler career
Dr. Charles Taylor Hennigan, Sr.
Born March 19, 1935 in Bienville, Louisiana to Clarence Roland Hennigan and Rev. Lura Hennigan
1953 Graduate of Minden High School
B.S. Degree (1958) (P.E.) – Northwestern State University
M.Ed. Degree (1961) (Education) – Northwestern State University
Ed.D. Degree (1967) (Elementary Education) - University of Houston

Dr. Charlie Hennigan of the Houston Oilers

Growing up in North Louisiana

The Hennigans moved from Bienville to Minden in 1942, when Charlie was in the 1st grade.

Charlie’s father had been the janitor at the Bienville school, but moved to Minden for a job at the Louisiana Army Ammunition plant.

The family lived in a small four-room frame house in the Oak Ridge addition in Minden.

He and his friends, “The Dirty Six,” played sports, fished and swam in Dorcheat Bayou and the gravel pits. The built a clubhouse from scrap lumber and ammunition boxes.
His mother was a Pentecostal preacher.

His father later worked for the Soil Conservation Service and the Springhill Paper Mill, before going to work for the Minden Police Department in 1949.

The Dirty Six
Left to Right:
Charlie Hennigan, Tommy Ashcroft, George Moore, Gary Daniel, Jackie Wright and Red Cupples (front).

Hunter’s Park

Charlie and his childhood friends in Minden spent many hours at Hunter’s Park

Hunter’s Playhouse

They swam in the pool, danced, drank

Cokes, played pool and watched baseball games.

His Father
Roland Hennigan served 44 years in law enforcement in Minden.
He began this career in 1949 with the Minden Police Department.
From 1952 to 1993 her served as a deputy sheriff for Webster Parish.
He completed his career as the Chief Civil Deputy and Court Bailiff, serving to the age of 87.

His Mother
Lura Hennigan was a Pentecostal Preacher
Rev. Lura Hennigan, Ronnie and Charlie at Church

Minden High School

A Budding Actor

Charlie had the starring role in this 2½ hour, 3-act play, presented at Minden High School.
He played the piano-playing mother-in-law.
March 3, 1953'
Minden High School Class of 1953


Best Sportsmanship Award       Best Athletes

Castor Jr. Tournament             Charles Hennigan & Joy Lynn Murphy

Mary Ellen Bailey, maid of Charles Hennigan

Annetta Bakerk, maid of Gerald Kirkland

Jean Sentell, maid of ?

Lloyd Baker was driving the car


 Mary Ellen Bailey was Charlie Hennegan's homecoming maid & majorete.

She is interred next to her Dad in the Gardens of Memory Cemetey in

the Garden of Prayer on row nine, Lt. 60, Sp.7 beside her Dad. She was

Born 25 Sept. 1937 and died 27 Nov. 1954.

Minden Crimson Tide

2-time State Champion in the 880 Run
Named to the All-North Louisiana Teams in Football & Track
LSU 1953-54Member of the 1954 SEC Conference Champion Mile-Relay Team.
He ran the 880 in 1:54.2.
LSU Track coach was Al Moreau.

LSU 53-54
Charlie and his brother Ronnie with their Father at LSU

1954-1957 Northwestern State Demons
Charlie starred in football and track at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana.He started at LSU, but transferred to Northwestern, because he wanted to play football, and coaches at LSU wouldn’t let him participate in both sports.
He ran the 100-yard-dash in 9.7 seconds
He set a school record of 47.2 seconds in the 440 that stood for 19 years at Northwestern.
He played cornerback and dive halfback
All-Conference Right Halfback in football
He never caught more than 12 passes in a season in college.

Northwestern Track Star - 1957

Canadian Football League

After failing to get drafted by the NFL, Charlie tries on with Edmonton in the Canadian Football League in the Summer of 1958.


He lasts only one month in Canada.

His coach, Sam Lyle, said he was too dumb to learn the plays and couldn’t play defense.

Charlie returned to Northwestern to finish his master’s degree and then in 1959 hired on to coach track and football and teach science at Jonesboro-Hodge High School.

It appeared that Charlie’s playing days were over.

Never Give Up

Dub Jones

While teaching and coach at Jonesboro, Charlie stayed in shape and started working out with Dub Jones, who had been a receiver with the Cleveland Browns, and who then owned a lumber company in Ruston.“He taught me finesse…he taught me moves…he taught me how to get open.”Dub Jones is the father of former Colts and Rams quarterback, Bert Jones. His other three sons were all college quarterbacks.

A Boy from Minden Does Good

Graduate Assistant at Northwestern State University – Taught Health & PE and Coached Football, 1958

2nd Lieutenant in U.S. Army, Fort Sill, Oklahoma and Fort Benning, GA – Artillery officer and paratrooper, 1959

Teacher & Coach at Jonesboro-Hodge High School – Biology, Health & PE, Coached Track& Football, 1959-60

Wide Receiver for Houston Oilers, 1960-66

Co-Owner of Camp Touchdown for Boys in Bryceland, LA – Live-in Summer camp for boys aged 7-14, 1962-65

Instructor at University of Houston – Taught Health and Physical Education, 1963-64
Teacher at Longfellow Elementary School in Houston – Third Grade Student Teacher, 1965

Certified to Teach in Texas and Louisiana in Mid-Management Administration, Reading Specialist, Elementary Self-Contained, Social Studies, PE & Health

One More Chance

NFL Scouts showed no interest in Charlie.

1965 Tops football card



In 1960, Charlie heard that a new league, the AFL, would have a team in Houston.
He and Northwestern teammate, Charlie Tolar, decided to go to the Oilers tryout in Houston. Tolar was working in the oilfields at the time, while Hennigan was teaching school at Jonesboro.After Charlie’s car broke down, they completed the trip by hitch-hiking into Houston.

Both made the team. Charlie Tolar was the Oilers leading rusher for several seasons.
Hennigan carried, as motivation, his last month’s paycheck from Jonesboro- Hodge High School. It was for $270.62.

         1960 Houston Oilers

September 1 - Charlie Hennigan scores the Oilers first touchdown in a 37-22 win over Oakland at San Francisco on a 43-yard pass from George Blanda.
Oilers win the first American Football League Championship 24-16 over Chargers.
44 Receptions for 722 yards (16.4 yd average)
6 Touchdowns
Selected to AFL All Star Team
Named All-Pro

1960 Houston Oilers

1st AFL Championship Oilers 24 – Chargers 16


1960 Oilers                                1961 Oilers


•Hennigan sets record of 1,746 yards receiving in season. 
This record was broken by Jerry Rice in 1995, standing for 34 years.
•Sets record of ten 100-yard games in season (tied by Michael Irvin in 1995)
•Sets record with 3 games with over 200 yards.
•Sets AFL record with 272 yards receiving against the Patriots on October 13.
•Sets Oiler/Titan record of 13 catches against Patriots.•82 Receptions for 1,746 yards (21.3 yard average)
•12 Touchdowns
•Selected to AFL All Star Team and named All-Pro
•Oilers win 2nd Consecutive AFL Championship, 10-3 over San Diego Chargers

1961 Houston Oilers American Football League Champions

1961 AFL Championship Oilers 10 – Chargers 3



My dad is Charlie Hennigan.  He played for the oilers from '60-'66. The story about the 1960 championship ring is interesting, but not quite complete.  I've enclosed a jpeg of the "true" 1960 championship ring.  In previous years, instead of rings, championship teams often received fobs, which I guess were weights that were placed on pocket watches.  Anyway, dad says that players grumbled several years later and finally got rings.  (I think he ground his ring up in the garbage disposal.)  Dad got 6 or 8 game balls.  He just gave them to us and we wore them out playing sandlot football with them. 

Best wishes,
Steve Hennigan, MD

Oilers Flying First Class

Louisiana Boys Charlie Tolar, Billy Cannon and Charlie Hennigan flying to the Ark-La-Tex Sports Hall of Fame Banquet in Shreveport.

1962 Houston Oilers
54 Receptions for 867 yards.
16.1 yards per catch
8 Touchdowns
Oilers lose AFL Championship game in double-overtime to the Dallas Texans 20-17.
Selected to AFL All Star Team.
Named All-Pro

1962 AFL Championship Texans 17 - Oilers 14

1963 Houston Oilers
61 Receptions for 1,051 yards.
17.2 yards per catch
10 Touchdowns
Makes 83 yard reception, the longest reception of his career
Named to AFL All-Star Team.

1964 - George Blanda 

Sept 1,1960 Charlie Hennigan scored the Oiler first touchdown in a 37-22 win over Oakland at San Francisco on a 43-yard pass from George Blanda. The Oilers won the first American Football League Champion Football League 24-16 over the Chargers. 44 receptio s for 722 yards. (16.4 yd average) 6 Touchdowns Selected to AFL All Star Team Named All-Pro

Another record bites the dust

•101 receptions for 1,546 yards.
•15.3 yards per catch
•8 Touchdowns
•First receiver in football history to make more than 100 receptions. Record stands for 20 years.
•First receiver ever to have more than 1,500 yards in two seasons
•Named to AFL All-Star Team.
•Named All-Pro

Hennigan with Lionel. Taylor in 1964

Charlie breaks another record for the Oilers




1st Row – Babe Parilli, Jack Kemp, George Saimes, Gino Cappelletti, Fred Glick, Cookie Gilchrist, Sid Blanks

2nd Row – Don Floyd, Dainard Paulson, Larry Garron, Butch Byrd, Pete Jaquess, Winston Hill, Tommy Addison, Jon Morris

3rd Row – Eddie Abramowski (trainer), Mike Stratton, Larry Grantham, Bob Talamine, Houston Antwine, Billy Shaw, Tom Sestak, Larry Eisenhauer, Stew Barber, Joel Collier (Defensive Coordinator)

4th Row – Sherman Plunkett, Nick Buoniconti, Charlie Hennigan, Bob Dee, John Mazur (staff), Jerry Smith (staff), Harvey Johnson Jr. (staff), Lou Saban (Head Coach)

1964 Eastern Division All Star Team Highlights From The Last Game

Coaches - Don Trull, George Blanda, Sammy Baugh and Jacky Lee

1965 Houston Oilers
41 Receptions for 578 yards.
14.1 yards per catch
4 Touchdowns
Calcium deposit on his right knee, caused by sliding on hard turfs, begins to slow him down.

Mot athletes dream of someday being in the record book.

How many realize the dream of being pictured on the cover?

1966 Houston Oilers

27 Receptions for 313 yards.
11.6 yards per catch
3 Touchdowns
Knee problem worsens, with fluid having to be drained off weekly.
Oilers trade him to San Diego at the end of the season, but Charlie retires from football instead.

Career Stats


1960      44          722   16.4 N/A   6

1961      82        1746   21.3 80 12

1962      54          867   16.1 78   8

1963      61         1051   17.2 83 10

1964    101         1546   15.3 53   8

1965      41 578   14.1 53   4

1966      27 313   11.6 23   3

Total    410         6823   16.6 83 51

•Led the league in 1961 in Receiving yards (1,746)

•Led the league in 1964 in Receptions (101) and Receiving Yardage (1,546)

•Receptions -- 1961-2nd (82), 1962-6th (54), 1963-6th (61), 1964-1st  (101), 1965-8th (41)

•Receiving Yardage --      1960-7th(722), 1961-1st(1746), 1962-5th(867), 1963-4th(1051), 1964-1st (1,546)

•Receiving Touchdowns --1960-6th (6), 1961-2nd (12), 1962-3rd (8), 1963-3rd (10), 1964-6th (8)

Jeppesen Field,
Houston, Texas – Capacity 35,500 - Home of the Oilers from 1960-1964
Owned by the Houston I.S.D.

Rice Stadium
Home to the Oilers from 1965-1967
Capacity – 53,000
Located on the campus of Rice University in Houston

Bud Adams Houston Oilers Owner

Hall of Fame Teammates
George Blanda (Pro Football Hall of Fame)
Billy Cannon (Heisman Trophy Winner)
Don Floyd
Bobby Jancik
Ernie Ladd (Orange, TX)
Jacky Lee
Wahoo McDaniel
Ron McDole
Jim Norton
Bob Talamini
Charlie Tolar

Notable Opponents
Winston Hill (AFL HOF, Joaquin, Texas)
Ernie Ladd (AFL HOF, Orange, Texas)
Miller Farr (AFL HOF, Beaumont, Texas)
Jerrel Wilson (AFL HOF, Pineland, Texas)

Charlie’s Cards







Life After Football

 ARK-La-Tex Pro Athlete of the year in 1961. 

He was honored at a banquet by some Minden civic group and was given the Key to the City of Minden by Jim Branch. 

He also has memorabilia placed in the Sports Museum down at the riverfront in Shreveport. 

There is an Ark-La-Tex track and field hall of fame where he was selected to a few years ago. 

Charlie held the 440 yard dash at NSU untile the replaced it with meters.

Hennigan was selected the most valuable Houston Oiler in 1964 after becoming the first pro to catch more than 100 passes. He was all-pro that year. 

 A LIFE OF SERVICE             

Elementary Supervisor, Louisiana Dept. of Education in Baton Rouge (1967-68)
Regional Manager for EDL/McGraw Hill Publishing company, New York, NY – covered 20-state Southeastern region (1968-72)
Wrote the nation’s first performance contract at Texarkana ISD, Arkansas (1972)
President of Education Achievement Corporation in Waco, TX – produced career guidance materials for elementary and junior high students (1972-77)
Louisiana Deputy Superintendent of Education, LA Dept of Education in Baton Rouge – Chief Administrative School Officer (1977)
Teacher, Dubberly, LA – Title I Reading and mathematics for 1st & 2nd grades, 1st grade Teacher (1977-79)
Law Student, Tulane University in New Orleans (1979-80)
Get Smart Tutorial Service in Minden, LA Shreveport, LA and Houston, TX – Tutorial service for elementary and secondary students (1979-80)
Teacher, Phillips Middle School in Minden, LA (1980-81)
Principal and Teacher, Founded Evangel Academy and Child Care Program in Shreveport, LA (1982-83)
Personal Business, Shreveport, LA (1983-85)
Teacher, Doyline Middle School in Doyline,LA  (1985-86)
President of Hennigan, Inc. in Houston – Founded Dr. Charlie’s Children and educational child care center, Early Childhood Education, childcare, testing, learning lab, ACT/SAT study courses, personal and professional development seminars (1987-1998)
Teacher, Oak Ridge Elementary in The Woodlands, TX – First Grade & Reading (1988-1999)
Teacher, Keithville Middle School in Shreveport, LA (1999-?)
Teacher, Forcht Wade Correctional Center in Shreveport, LA – ABE-GED instructor (present, 2005)

In addition to his contributions to the education of thousands of students while teaching at the preschool, elementary, secondary and university levels, Dr. Charlie Hennigan has provided the following services:

Designed and implemented counseling and educational program for court-ordered delinquent students, aged 14-17, in Montgomery County, Texas. (1992-1993)
Edited “The Sound Reading Program”, a phonetic reading program with pictograms for junior high students (1973)
Edited “Creating Your Future”, a secondary career guidance program for underachieving students. (1973)
Produced “Set Yourself Free,” a ten-module course of self-discovery and goal-setting. (1993)
Produced and delivered seminars on Self-Testing for Success, Stress Management and Time Management


Author – “Slick”, Bantam paperback original
Published Author
Published in 1975 by Bantam Books.
“A true-to-life football novel by one of the game’s greats”
Hennigan Institute




Family 7 children

Not pictured Chuck and Stephen Hennigan. James, Taylor, Jordan, &Shalom .Faith He is the youngest child. Faith may have been born after this was taken.

Son of Roland and Rev. Lura Taylor Hennigan