Canadian History for Kids!
Sketches of Canada for December 25th!
The Good Ole’ Hockey Game!
Is it the very first gane ever played? We may never know. But what a great story! This Canadian History for Kids, Sketches of Canada, looks at the game of Hockey and a special game that was played on Christmas day, 1855.
This Canadian History for Kids article begins when Soldiers of the Royal Canadian Rifles at the Tete du Pont barracks cleared ice from Lake Ontario at Kingston Ontario and used field hockey sticks and lacrosse balls to play what is reputed to be the First game of ice hockey, Christmas morning, 1855.
The origin of ice hockey is unknown, however, ice hockey probably evolved from the game of field hockey that has been played in Northern Europe for centuries.
The rules of modern ice hockey were devised by Canadian J G A Creighton. In 1875, the first game of ice hockey with Creighton’s rules was played in Montreal, Canada.
The earliest games in the sport were not carbon copies of the current version; the Halifax Rules. Creighton said the puck couldn’t leave the ice, no forward passing was permitted and the goalie couldn’t fall down or kneel to make saves. As the sport’s popularity skyrocketed in Montreal in the late 1800s, the official rules of the sport were created, the Montreal Rules, in 1877. Injured players could now be replaced, team sizes were set at seven a side (down from eight) and the rink’s measurements were now made standard.
Creighton was instrumental in organising what today is considered as the first organized game of hockey.
This Canadian History for Kids article continues on March 3, 1875 when Captain Creighton’s McGill team defeated captain Fred Torrence’s Victoria team 2 “games” (i.e. goals) to 1. It was the first known game which was pre-announced, where two named teams played on a confined ice area (a rink), where all names of the players were recorded as well as the score and the game was played with “a flat circular piece of wood”, a puck. The game was played at the Victoria Skating Rink in Montreal.
Two years later, on January 31, 1877, the McGill University in Montreal formed the first organised hockey team and on February 27, the Montreal Gazette published the first hockey rules – seven in all.
Wherever the origins lie, we can all agree, Hockey is OUR sport!
And that’s this weeks Canadian History for Kids, Sketches of our Canada.