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ARCHIVED - Backcheck: a Hockey Retrospective

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This Montreal Gazette item of March 4, 1875 is thought to be the earliest published account of an organized game of hockey at a stated time and place, between two identified teams and with a recorded score. The Victoria Skating Rink, 49 Drummond Street, Montréal was the site of this historic match. Earlier published references to hockey and its forerunners were written in general terms.

Hockey

HOCKEY -- At the Rink last night a very large audience gathered to witness a novel contest on the ice. The game of hockey, though much in vogue on the ice in New England and other parts of the United States, is not much known here, and in consequence the game of last evening was looked forward to with great interest. Hockey is played usually with a ball, but last night, in order that no accident should happen, a flat block of wood was used, so that it should slide along the ice without rising, and thus going among the spectators to their discomfort. The game is like Lacrosse in one sense -- the block having to go through flags placed about 8 feet apart in the same manner as the rubber ball -- but in the main the old country game of shinty gives the best idea of hockey. The players last night were eighteen in number -- nine on each side -- and were as follows: -- Messrs. Torrance (captain), Meagher, Potter, Goff, Barnston, Gardner, Griffin, Jarvis and Whiting. Creighton (captain), Campbell, Campbell, Esdaile, Joseph, Henshaw, Chapman, Powell and Clouston. The match was an interesting and well-contested affair, the efforts of the players exciting much merriment as they wheeled and dodged each other, and notwithstanding the brilliant play of Captain Torrance's team Captain Creighton's men carried the day, winning two games to the single of the Torrance nine. The game was concluded about half-past nine, and the spectators then adjourned well satisfied with the evening's entertainment."