When British soldiers began settling in early Canada, their sporting traditions blended with a Mi'kmaq game to create a new sport that evolved into hockey. A History of Hockey in Canada traces hockey's roots from those first steps on the frozen ponds of eastern Canada to the modern game we know and love:
-- Games that were the precursors to modern hockey were oochamkunutk (Mi'kmaq), shinty (Scottish), hurling (Irish) and bandy (English)
-- From the ponds of Windsor, Nova Scotia, to Kingston, Ontario, and Montreal, Quebec, a new game evolved, and in March 1875, the first organized game of hockey was played in Montreal
-- The Mi'kmaq of Nova Scotia were the first popular craftsmen of sticks; their MicMac brand was the stick of choice for professional hockey players until the early 20th century
-- The first goalposts were often set parallel to the length of the playing surface, to make it more difficult to score since there was no goalie
-- Referees first used cowbells to call plays, and only switched to whistles when people began bringing their own cowbells to games
-- The first organized game of women's hockey took place in the late 1880s in Ottawa
-- Goalie Jacques Plante was the first to use a mask regularly after taking a puck to the face on November 1, 1959
-- The NHL was formed in November 1917 with four hockey clubs -- the Ottawa Senators, Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers and Toronto Arenas -- and today the league has expanded to 30 NHL teams.
A must for the hockey fan. Anyone fascinated by Canada's sports history will want to have this book.