Canadian History for Kids!
Sketches of Canada for November 27th!

Canadian History for Kids: Gordie Howe

He is known in hockey circles as “Mr. Hockey”. Others know him as “Elbows”.

Gordie Howe scores his 1,000th point with an assist as the Detroit Red Wings beat the Toronto Maple Leafs, November 27th, 1960. This Canadian History for Kids, Sketches of our Canada, looks at the amazing career of Gordie Howe.

This Canadian History for Kids article begins when Howe was born in 1928 to parents Ab and Katherine Howe in a farmhouse in Floral, Saskatchewan – one of nine children. When Gordie was nine days old, the Howes moved to Saskatoon, where his father worked as a labourer during the Depression.

Howe grew and matured quickly, and when he was 15 he made a bid to play with the New York Rangers, attending the team’s training camp in Winnipeg. He was homesick, however, and before the end of the camp he returned to Saskatchewan. He made a better impression with the Detroit Red Wings.

This Canadian History for Kids article continues when Howe made his professional debut when he was 18, taking up the right wing for Detroit at the beginning of the 1946-47 season. He was 6′ tall and just over 200 pounds, making him one of the heavier players in the league. He threw his weight around and he never backed away from a fight.

Another tough star, Maurice “Rocket” Richard, challenged the rookie with a shove and a few angry words in Howe’s first game in Montreal. Howe knocked Richard out cold with one punch.

Howe was selected to 21 NHL All-Star squads, 12 times to the First Team. Six times he led the NHL in scoring to capture the Art Ross Trophy and six times he won the Hart as the league’s most valuable player. His Detroit teams won the Stanley Cup four times.

Howe retired in 1971, but a year later, Howe was offered a contract to play with the Houston Aeros of the newly formed World Hockey Association (WHA), who had also signed his sons Mark and Marty to contracts. In 1974, at the age of 46, Howe won the Gary L. Davidson Trophy, awarded to the WHA’s most valuable player (the trophy was renamed the Gordie Howe Trophy the following year). Howe played with the Aeros until 1977, when he and his sons joined the New England Whalers.

At the time of his retirement, Howe’s professional totals, including playoffs, for the NHL and WHA combined, were first. He finished with 2,421 games played, 1,071 goals, 1,518 assists, and 2,589 points.

And that’s this weeks Canadian History for Kids, Sketches of our Canada.

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Canadian History for Kids!