The History of Professional Hockey in Victoria, BC: 1911-2011
by Helen Edwards
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.
Exhaustive, almost encyclopedic, if that’s a word—Helen Edwards has fully, thoroughly, completely compiled the details that give the most detailed and authoritative look possible at the incredible and entertaining history of professional hockey in Victoria. The names, the maneuvering through arena issues, and a Stanley Cup are all chronicled and this book is a must for anyone who grew up around Victoria’s lone hockey rink. The one thing that shines through, and you’ll say it at the end—man, did she do lot of arduous research to get this completed work. Impressive.
Managing Partner and General Manager VICTORIA HARBOURCATS BASEBALL CLUB
Helen Edwards has been a fan of professional hockey in Victoria since the 1950s when a radio station offered tickets to Victoria Cougars games for a nickel. She held season tickets for the Victoria Maple Leafs and the Victoria Salmon Kings. Spurred by the demise of the Salmon Kings and the death of Bill Shvetz, a Maple Leafs’ defenceman, 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.