Helen Edwards: The History of Professional Hockey in Victoria B.C. 1911-2011

The first penalty shot in history: The major rule change for the 1921 season involved the awarding of a penalty shot if a player were fouled while...
  1. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    The History of Professional Hockey in Victoria is available in the Victoria area from Bolen Books, Munro’s Books, and Tanner Books. It is available online through Friesen’s at The History of Professional Hockey in Victoria at the FriesenPress Bookstore and from major online booksellers.

    About the Book

    The History of Professional Hockey in Victoria is an in-depth examination of professional hockey in Victoria. It includes details on the different leagues, statistics on every game played by a Victoria team, and information on every player to dress for at least one regular-season game.

    From the Patrick family to RG Properties, this book covers the ownership of teams and records the highlights and low points of every team.

    It was produced as a “thank-you” to the players who entertained Victorians over a century, giving us reason to cheer on many occasions and to be disappointed as well. Victoria enjoyed three championships, including the Stanley Cup victory in 1925. Little did the Cougars know that they would go down in history as the last non-NHL team to win the Stanley Cup, and the last non-NHL team to play in a Stanley Cup series. They were also the last West Coast team to win the Stanley Cup until Anaheim did it in 2007. The 1950-51 Cougars, led by their “kid line” of Andy Hebenton, Bob Frampton, and Reg Abbott, won the league title while the Maple Leafs (with Hebenton in the lineup) won the Lester Patrick Cup in the1965-1966 season.

    Included in the narrative is the story of the construction and operation of the different venues in which games were played. The politics behind arena construction are examined as well, with editorial cartoons to make the reader laugh about the folly of some ideas.

    Biographies of selected players tell the story of individuals and how they came to play hockey in Victoria. Learn from behind-the-scenes stories told by the players themselves.
    Lavishly illustrated, this is a book for those who love hockey history and its connection to Victoria, BC.

    Edwards.jpg

    Here is the story of Moose Johnson night March 4, 1921.

    “The entire city of Victoria was excited about the next home game. Based on a suggestion from a young fan, the Aristocrats held Moose Johnson night. Five hundred young fans who had stood in line for free tickets made the crowd noisier than ever. It was a game for the ages.

    The evening began with presentations to Ernie “Moose” Johnson reported in the Victoria Daily Times as:

    As Referee Ion poised the puck over the crossed sticks in centre ice, Murray Patrick, a wee youth, pushed off from the boards bearing in his hands a huge loving cup. He handed it to the Moose and immediately a great chorus of applause went up from the gods, where the 500 boys were quartered. The cup was inscribed: “Presented to Ernie 'Moose” Johnson by his pals, the Kids of Victoria, BC.” Referee Ion tried to start the game again, but a stalwart man skipped out onto the ice and handed “Moose” a beautiful pair of diamond cufflinks, a present from the fans of Victoria. Referee Ion then took a hand in making presentations and waltzed out with a huge silver cup, which was engraved as follows: “Presented by PCHA to ‘Moose'” Johnson as a token of appreciation for his brilliant career as the greatest defense hockey player in the PCHA during the past 10 years.” The Kewpies ladies hockey team then presented the “Moose” with a big kewpie, and some dear mother trotted out a big birthday cake for Ernie. The proceedings wound up with the new police Commissioner, Jo north, doing skating act on the ice and announcing a bouquet of beautiful flowers for “Mrs. Moose.”

    The game did not start well for the Aristocrats, as Seattle scored the first 2 goals. However, they outscored their opponents 2-1 in the second period to trail by only 2 goal. In the third period, Victoria's offence came to life and they scored 2 goals which put them in the lead 4-3. Unfortunately, Seattle scored just before the end of the game making overtime necessary. The first overtime period solved nothing. Nor did the second. The teams played a third overtime period, at which point they were totally exhausted. At that point, the managers of both teams agreed to call off the game, with the understanding that it will be played again if it would make a difference in the final league standing. It was the longest game ever played in the Pacific Coast hockey Association and, perhaps, in the whole of professional hockey. Victoria had played in the four longest games in PCHA history; they had won three and tied one of them.”

    The first penalty shot in history.

    “The major rule change for the 1921 season involved the awarding of a penalty shot if a player were fouled while he had a clear goal-scoring chance. Three dots were painted on each end of the rink, 35 feet from the net. The player could choose from which he would shoot on the goaltender. The first penalty shot goal in history was scored by Tommy Dunderdale on December 12, 1921. In the entire season, there were 98 attempts, of which only 28 ended up in the net. Another change was the limiting of games to one overtime period. It was generally felt that the 3-overtime game played the previous season between Seattle and Victoria had such an effect on the players that it took them days to recover — and that was not good for the health of the players or, indeed, the game itself.”
     
    Last edited by moderator Theokritos: Jul 5, 2020 at 9:34 AM
  2. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    About the author

    Helen Edwards has been a fan of professional hockey in Victoria since the 1950s when a local radio station offered tickets to Victoria Cougars games for a nickel. She was a season ticket holder for the Victoria Maple Leafs and later for the Victoria Salmon Kings. Spurred by the demise of the Salmon Kings and the death of Bill Shvetz who had played defence for the Victoria Maple Leafs, she embarked on an ambitious project to document the stories of the 483 men to play at least one game for a Victoria team. After over seven years of meticulous research, the book is finally complete.

    Helen is an architectural historian by training but was able to combine her two passions, historical research and hockey, to bring to life long-forgotten stories about personalities who deserve to be known to today’s hockey fans.

    She has lived in Victoria, BC all her life and is married with four children and three surviving grandchildren.
     
    Last edited by moderator Theokritos: Nov 17, 2019
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  3. senior edler mystique

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    Regarding those penalty shots, is there any stats available on player attempts and goals?
     
  4. goliver845 Registered User

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  5. kaiser matias Registered User

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    I have an aunt named Helen Edwards who lives in Victoria, so when I first saw this post I was very confused, especially as she is more a curling fan. But am excited that such a book exists, and am planning in reading it. Victoria has a really vibrant hockey history, and it's nice to see it all together.
     
  6. Doctor No Registered User

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    This is terrific - looking forward to checking this one out (although I'll always be partial to Seattle among the pre-NHL western squads). Welcome!
     
  7. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    I could not find much in the way of statistics. I actually put together results for the early eras as I could find nothing anywhere online. I compiled game results by reading reports in the newspapers. The only drawback was that our local paper did not always give the details so I had to find the numbers elsewhere. As far as I know, there is no record of penalty shots taken and the number of goals. I was only writing about Victoria teams so did not explore the rest of the teams in the different leagues.
     
  8. Theokritos Moderator

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    I'd like to know how extensive the biographies are and how large the part of the book is that they occupy.
     
  9. JackSlater Registered User

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    I've ordered it. I have a Victoria Cougars t-shirt (second best classic hockey t-shirt) and don't want to be a complete poser.
     
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  10. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    I have a soft spot for Seattle too as they won the Stanley Cup as well. I find the early years of hockey to be far more interesting than today's game that is all about money.
     
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  11. tarheelhockey Highest Boss

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    Can you talk about Victoria's transition from being a major-league market in the mid-20s to not having pro hockey at all in the mid-30s? I find that to be a particularly interesting case of a city which could thrive under one dynamic but was quickly cut out of the picture as pro sports changed. Kind of like a western counterpart to Quebec City.
     
  12. JMCx4 Gateway to Hockey

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    @tarheelhockey: Buy the book. ;)
     
  13. tarheelhockey Highest Boss

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    Maybe I'm missing something here, but I thought the point of the thread was to talk about the topic of the book.
     
  14. Theokritos Moderator

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    That is indeed the point of the thread.
     
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  15. JMCx4 Gateway to Hockey

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    Thus the wink.
     
  16. the4thlinegrinder Registered User

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    Side note- the Victoria Cougars name lives on today in the form of a Jr B team in Esquimalt.
     
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  17. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    They are very short biographies with just enough information to bring the players to life. Most are one page long.
     
  18. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    The City of Victoria never grew to the extent that Vancouver did and was considered a very small market as early as the 1960s. Add to the population issue the fact that building arenas was a quagmire of political nonsense and it took years to get anything done. We had minor pro hockey here in the 1990s, but the town would not support it.
     
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  19. Theokritos Moderator

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    @Helen Edwards: Which sources did you use for the PCHA/WHL time? Is there anything out there beyond newspaper articles from that time and Craig Bowlsby's 2012 book Empire of Ice?
     
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  20. Helen Edwards Registered User

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    I found some information at the BC Archives and, of course, read all the newspapers (on microfilm as they were not digitized when I did my research). I also found information at the Oak Bay Archives and the City of Victoria Archives, none of which is digitized. Craig Bowlsby's book was an excellent source and he answered some questions for me as well, Our local Hall of Fame had some old documents as well. I read old city council minutes and archival records of different groups that had some input into the hockey of the area.
     
  21. Theokritos Moderator

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    As well-sourced as I would have expected from an art historian.
     
  22. greyraven8 Registered User

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    ordered the hardcover edition from Indigo.
    grand total is just over $50 (CDN).
    looking forward to receiving and reading it.
     
  23. Theokritos Moderator

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    Would love to read your feedback here in this place.
     

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