The 1898 Western Pennsylvania All-Star football team was a collection of early football players, from several teams in the area, to form an all-star team. The team was formed by Dave Berry, the manager of the Latrobe Athletic Association, for the purpose of playing the Duquesne Country and Athletic Club, which fielded a team composed of many of the game's stars from the era. The game between the two clubs ended in a 16-0 Duquesne victory and is considered to be the first all-star game for professional football. Contrary to popular belief, while the game was held at Exposition Park, which would be currently located inside of the city limits of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the 1898 location of the game was Allegheny, Pennsylvania which was not incorporated into the city of Pittsburgh until 1907.
At the end of the Duquesne Country and Athletic Club's 1897 season, the club signed a number of talented players to contracts for the upcoming 1898 season. However, in April 1898, the Spanish–American War began. As a result, many of the team's recently signed players ended up in the United States Army. Looking for a solution to the problem, Duquesne manager William Chase Temple went out and signed up replacement players. Temple succeeded, and he received excellent results, when it was noticed that some of the replacements actually ended up being even more talented than the original contracted stars.
However that August, the war ended, with an American victory, and the soldiers quickly returned home. As a result, the Duquesnes suddenly found themselves with a surplus of pro football stars under contract. The team had so much depth, that it's benchwarmers would have starred for lesser teams. The amount of talent on the field was also reflected on the team's ledgers. Due to the high payroll, Temple eventually took over the payments to the athletes, thus becoming the first individual professional football team owner.