On This Day

December 19

maple leaf Today's Canadian Headline...
1917 FIRST TWO NHL GAMES PLAYEDMontreal Quebec/ Toronto Ontario – NHL starts inaugural season: original members of the league are the Montreal Canadiens, the Montreal Wanderers, Toronto Arenas, Ottawa Senators and Quebec Bulldogs. Quebec will not start playing with the league until 1919; Quebec’s best player Joe Malone joins the Canadiens and on opening night scores five goals, including likely the first goal ever scored in the NHL, as Montreal beats Ottawa 9-4. Malone will go on to score 44 goals during the 24-game season. In the game in Toronto, Montreal Wanderers Dave Ritchie also scores what may have been the first NHL goal in a 10-9 victory over the Toronto Arenas; also first NHL game played on artificial ice; Harry Hyland of the Wanderers also scores five goals in this game; it will be the team’s lone victory in the NHL: less than a month later, their arena burns down and they withdraw from the league. Sixteen of the players on that first day wind up in the Hockey Hall of Fame. The rules: each team can only dress a maximum of 12 players. There are no bluelines, no icing rules and no forward passing beyond the centre-ice red line. Minor penalties are three minutes long, and there is no limit on overtime.

Also On This Day...

Edmonton Alberta – Wayne Gretzky scores his career 1,000th point on an assist in a 7-3 win over the Los Angeles Kings; at age 23 the youngest and the 18th NHLer; reaches the mark in just his 424th regular-season game, the fewest by any player in League history; Guy Lafleur held the old record, reaching the 1000 point mark in 720 games, 296 more than Gretzky. Gretzky will go on to break Gordie Howe’s career record of 1,850 points in 1989. Here he is with his hero a decade earlier.


And in Today's Canadian Birthdays...

Doug Harvey 1924-1990
NHL defenseman, born on this day at Montreal in 1924; dies there Dec. 26, 1990. Harvey joined the Canadiens in 1947-48; won the James Norris Trophy as outstanding defenseman 7 times playing for the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers. With Harvey anchoring their defense and controlling the pace, the Canadiens won 5 consecutive Stanley Cups starting in 1956. Harvey was selected as a first team all-star 10 times. He was traded to the New York Rangers in 1961 where he became a player/coach for one season. In 1968-69, Harvey was acquired by the expansion St. Louis Blues, and he finished off his playing career that year by helping the Blues reach the Stanley Cup finals. His career point total is 88 goals and 452 assists in 1113 regular-season games and 8 goals and 64 assists in 137 playoff games. Here he is slowing down the progress of two Detroit players.Also William Parry 1790-1855
naval officer, arctic explorer, was born on this day at Bath, England, in 1790; died at Bad Ems, Rhineland-Palatinate July 08, 1855. Parry served as a midshipman in the Royal Navy in the Baltic and North Sea until 1812; 1812-17 served in North America and in 5 arctic expeditions; 1818 commanded an expedition through Baffin Bay to Ellesmere Island; 1819 to Melville Island by way of Lancaster Sound (first ships to cross 110° W); 1821 sailed through Foxe Basin and discovered Fury and Hecla Strait; 1824 sailed down Prince Regent Inlet; HMS Hecla wrecked; 1827 sailed from Svalbard north to 82° 45″ N, a record not broken for fifty years.

Also John Medley 1804-1892
Anglican minister, was born on this day at Chelsea, England, in 1804; died at Fredericton Sept. 09, 1892. Medley studied at Wadham College, Oxford; 1845 appointed first Anglican bishop of Fredericton; 1853 consecrated cathedral designed by architect Frank Wills.

Also Charles Fitzpatrick 1853-1942
lawyer, politician, jurist, was born on this day at Quebec City in 1853; died there June 17, 1942. Fitzpatrick studied law at Laval, and was called to the bar in 1876; 1885 chief counsel for Louis Riel; 1891 counsel for Honoré Mercier after his dismissal from office; 1890-96 Liberal MLA in Quebec; 1896-1906 MP; 1896 Laurier’s Solicitor General; 1902 Minister of Justice; 1906 Chief Justice of Canada; 1918-23 Lieutenant Governor of Quebec.

Also Jimmy McLarnin 1907-
boxer, was born on this day at Belfast, Ireland, in 1907. McLarnin moved to Vancouver at age 3, started boxing at age 12; 1923-24 turned professional under the guidance of Pop Foster at age 16, and went undefeated in 19 welterweight bouts; moved to Los Angeles, then New York; won the world welterweight crown twice in his 13 years in the ring; 1933 knocked out ‘Young’ Corbett III at 2:37 of the first round; 1934 lost his title to Barney Ross, won it back the same year, then lost again in 1935; earned over half a million dollars from his fights which he invested well enough to last his lifetime; 1936 retired after 77 pro bouts, winning 20 by KO, 42 by decision, 1 on a foul and 3 draws, and losing 10 by decision.

Also John Glassco 1909-1981
poet, translator, was born on this day at Montreal in 1909; died there Jan. 29, 1981. Glassco fled Montreal to Paris at age 20; 1932 returned to Canada with near fatal illness; works include Memoirs of Montparnasse (1970); Selected Poems (Governor General’s 1971), The Fatal Woman (1974), and a translation of the Complete Poems of Saint-Denys-Garneau (1975).

Also Galt MacDermot 1928-
composer, was born on this day at Montreal in 1928, the son of a Canadian diplomat. MacDermot is best known for his music in Hair, and his Tony Award Winning score to Two Gentlemen of Verona. He has created musicals (The Human Comedy, Steel), ballet scores (Salome), film scores (Cotton Comes To Harlem, Fortune and Mans Eyes, Mistress), chamber music (Wind Quintet), the Anglican Liturgy, poetry (Thomas Hardy) and drama accompaniments (The Sun Always Shines For The Cool, and The Shooting of Dan McGrew) and band repertory.

Also John Godfrey 1942-
academic, editor, politician, was born on this day at Toronto in 1942. Godfrey studied at the universities of Toronto and Oxford; 1970 taught at Dalhousie University; 1977 President of King’s College, Dalhousie; 1987 published Capitalism at War; 1987 Editor of the Financial Post; 1991 VP of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research; 1993 elected as an MP for the federal Liberal party.

Also Zalman ‘Zal’ Yanovsky 1944-
singer, guitarist, songwriter, was born on this day at New York City in 1944; grew up in Toronto; 1965 with his folk singer friend John Sebastian teamed up with rockers Steve Boone and Joe Butler to form The Lovin’ Spoonful; hits included Do You Believe in Magic, Daydream, You Didn’t Have to be So Nice, Nashville Cats and Summer in the City; 1967 left the band to pursue a solo career.

In Other Events…
1997 Los Angeles, California – Canadian director James Cameron’s epic ‘Titanic’ opens in movie theatres; will become the highest grossing film ever made; with theme song by Céline Dion.
1994 Hull Quebec – CRTC approves $3.1 billion takeover of Maclean Hunter Ltd. by Rogers Communications Inc.
1991 Toronto Ontario – Bob White, Canadian Auto Workers President, announces merger with the Canadian Association of Industrial, Mechanical and Allied Workers; 6,500 aerospace and mining workers in Manitoba and BC.
1988 Winnipeg Manitoba – Premier Gary Filmon withdraws his resolution to ratify Meech Lake from the Manitoba legislature; to protest Robert Bourassa’s passage of Bill 178 requiring French only on outside signs, but permitting bilingual signs inside;.Ontario Premier David Peterson later says that Bourassa’s decision to use the notwithstanding clause ‘drove a stake through the heart of the Meech Lake Accord’.
1985 Toronto Ontario – Queen’s Park brings in a law to ban extra billing by doctors under OHIP.
1984 Montreal Quebec – Scotty Bowman becomes NHL’s all time winningest coach; today the most successful coach in any major league sport.
1977 Ottawa Ontario – Ottawa ends commercial relations with South Africa, to protest Apartheid racial policies.
1977 Europe – Ottawa resumes uranium shipments to European Economic Community; EEC agrees to follow 1974 Canadian nuclear safeguards.
1975 Toronto Ontario – Bertha Wilson appointed to Ontario Court of Appeal; first woman in Canada named to a provincial court of appeal; later the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.
1973 Montreal Quebec – Montreal Symphony Orchestra able to keep operating with financial aid from citizens, businesses, and governments.
1969 Ottawa Ontario – Ottawa announces plans to cut Canadian Armed Forces reserves and close 41 armories.
1964 Halifax Nova Scotia – Royal Canadian Navy commissions HMCS Annapolis; 20th ship in destroyer escort program.
1961 Ottawa Ontario – John George Diefenbaker 1895-1979 speaks to Queen Elizabeth by new CANTAT cable carrying voice, picture, and teletype messages; first link in new round-the-world Commonwealth communications system.
1956 Bonn Germany – Canadian and West Germany sign agreement to train 360 West German aircrew in Canada.
1949 Washington DC – Canada, Britain and the US agree to standardize military arms and fighting methods.
1941 Hong Kong – Company Sergeant Major John Osborn of the Winnipeg Grenadiers, leading a bayonet charge against the Japanese on Mount Butler; throws himself on a Japanese grenade to save his comrades’ lives; posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross.
1940 Atlantic – Royal Canadian Navy destroyer HMCS Saguenay torpedoed by a German U-boat.
1927 Montreal Quebec – Mgr. Raymond-Marie Rouleau named a Cardinal.
1927 England – Albert ‘Frenchy’ Belanger 1906-1969 beats England’s Ernie Jarvis over 12 rounds to win the World Flyweight Championship by decision; 112 lb boxer from Toronto’ Cabbagetown retired in 1930 after six years and 61 pro bouts which included 13 KO’s, 24 decisions, 7 draws and 17 losses.
1917 Quebec City – Quebec Bulldogs play their first professional hockey game.
1904 Dawson City Yukon – Dawson City hockey team starts walking towards Seattle to catch a train to Ottawa to play in the Stanley Cup on Jan 13 1905.
1865 Ottawa Ontario – George Brown 1818-1880 resigns from cabinet after clashing with Conservative members.
1846 Toronto Ontario – The mayors of Toronto and Hamilton exchange greetings to open Canada’s first telegraph service; the line runs between Toronto and Hamilton over lines of Toronto, Hamilton, Niagara, & St. Catharines Telegraph Company, founded Oct. 22.
1837 St-Eustache Quebec – John Colborne frees 64 of the 120 Patriote prisoners taken at St-Eustache, then returns to Montreal.
1813 Montreal Quebec – James McGill dies, leaving £10,000 to found a university; merchant and former North West Company partner.
1813 Lewiston New York – Lt.-Col. John Murray leads 550 British and Canadians in surprise attack, capturing Fort Niagara from the Americans; Riall goes on to destroy Lewiston and Buffalo to retaliate for burning of Newark (Niagara) and Queenston.

Today in Canadian History is written, compiled, edited and produced by Ottawa Researchers © 1984-2002.

All Rights Reserved.

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