STANLEY CUP

May 01, 2009

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David B. Purvis

STANLEY CUP

      Nova Scotia also claims to have had the first hockey game played at King's College near Windsor Nova Scotia. The game was popular there and spread to places like Kingston Ontario and Montreal Quebec, and every town and village in between and soon spread to the Western Provinces of Canada. Women also loved to play, and even the daughter of Lord Stanley Preston, Isobel, played for Government House as early as 1889. Another team was the Rideau Ladies Hockey Team while out west a prominant player was Annie McIntyre, well known across the Prairies as a star player. Soon special padding was developed for goaltenders and rules were fine tuned, with leagues like the NHA and PCHA. The very first Stanley Cup match was played between the Montreal AAAs and the Ottawa Capitals.

      Lord Stanley himself had been a British Member of Parliament, once Secretary of State for the British Colonies, and had become a respected and wealthy man. In 1888 he was appointed Governer General of Canada. In this position he sponsored the Dominion Challenge Cup, which became The Stanley Cup eventually. Stanley bought the bowl in London England for about fifty dollars, was given to an amateur team from any of the many leagues who challenged for it. By 1926 the trophy became the prize of the National Hockey League. Lord Stanley was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1945, but the sad part is, he returned to England before ever seeing his cup competed for,  and never knew what a long lasting and dreamed about team tropht he had invented!

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