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Bibliography Abstracts

Blackburn, Cecil. "The Development of Sports in Alberta, 1900-1918." Thesis (M.A.). University of Alberta, 1974.

AB: This research study utilizes newspapers and secondary sources to piece together and analyze the development of sports in Alberta from 1900 to 1918. The thesis is prefaced with an introduction, comments on the Albertan setting and a brief overview of sports in the province prior to 1900. From then on, each chapter is dedicated to a specific subset of sports in Alberta: aquatic, association football, baseball, basketball, billiards, bowling, boxing, cricket, curling, equestrian, golf, ice hockey, ice skating, lacrosse, lawn tennis, minor sports [including gymnastics, table tennis and horseshoes], rugby, shooting and track and field.


The concluding chapter analyzes the various factors affecting sports in Alberta during the study's focus period and explores the trend of impressive growth followed by destabilizing effects of the First World War and the arrival of the Spanish flue epidemic. This thesis is a highly recommended source for information on the sports history of turn of the century Alberta. Contents include:
Chapter 4, Aquaplaning, p. 38 AB: First reported in July 1914 as an event at the second Seba Boating Club (Seba Beach, Alta) regatta.
Chapter 4, Boating, p. 39-41, AB: A variety of boating events have been held across Alberta as early as 1900 with motorboat racing being introduced in 1910.
Chapter 4, Swimming, p. 42-48, AB: Outdoor swimming was a popular pastime during this era reinforced by indoor pools constructed in Edmonton, Calgary and Lethbridge.
Chapter 4, Water Polo, p. 48-49,AB: In 1906 and 1908 a team from Banff played matches against their Regina competitors at the pools of the Cave and Basin.
Chapter 5, Association Football, p. 54-77, A popular summer sport since 1862 with dozens of clubs founded by 1900.
Chapter 6, Baseball, p. 78-110, With a vast influx of American settlers, baseball was incredibility well organized and supported during this period. Chapter 7, Basketball, p. 111-124, AB: Newly invited, basketball did not evolve in Alberta but was carefully introduced through schools and community organizations like churches and the Y. M. C. A..
Chapter 8, Billiards, p. 125-128, AB: Pool halls were constructed in nearly every settlement in Alberta and billiards were widely played by the adult male population.
Chapter 9, Bowling, p. 129-139, AB: Bowling overcame its unsavory reputation by 1904 and a team from High River even competed nationally in 1907.
Chapter 10, Boxing, p. 140-164, AB: Professional boxing in Alberta was popular in this period until the tragic death of Luther McCarty in 1913 prohibited prize fighting until the onset of the war.
Chapter 11, Cricket, p. 165-174, AB: This popular British pastime was widely enjoyed and many clubs were started with local North West Mounted Police detachments often forming their own teams.
Chapter 12, Curling, p. 175-193, AB: Curling was well established in the province by 1900 and quickly became one of the largest forms of interprovincial competition.
Chapter 13, Gymkhana, p. 194-195, AB: Oftentimes used as a sideshow to other events, gymkhanas were used during the war to raise funds. Chapter 13, Horse and Harness-Horse Racing, p. 196-204, AB: One of the most popular sports in Alberta at the turn of the century with the fist Turf club being formed at Pincher Creek in 1882.
Chapter 13, Rodeo, p. 216-220, AB: The hallmark of the cowboy on Alberta sports history; the fist organized rodeo took place at Raymond in 1903 and was dubbed "the Stampede" by its director, Ray Knight.
Chapter 14, Golf, p. 230-238, AB: In 1900, this game was primarily played by women with the Alberta Golf Association holding official yearly tournaments since 1908.
Chapter 15, Ice Hockey, p. 239-273, AB: In Alberta, the first games of this much beloved sport were played at the Star Skating Rink in Calgary during the winter of 1892-1893.
Chapter 16, Ice Skating, p. 274-282, AB: With skating as popular pastime, speed skating slowly evolved into a competitive sport with province wide meets being held at Calgary as early as 1910.
Chapter 17, Lacrosse, p. 283-300, AB: Support for lacrosse lagged across much of Alberta with few clubs able to keep active members with only minor success at Calgary in 1907.
Chapter 18, Lawn Tennis, p. 301-307, AB: Since its invention in 1873, tennis rapidly spread and was brought to Alberta with the first settlers. On July 1st, 1900 a tournament in Lethbridge drew 150 spectators.
Chapter 20, Rugby, p. 368-391, AB: Rugby was brought to Alberta by members of the North West Mounted Police in 1890 and an Edmonton-Calgary rivalry began in 1895.
Chapter 21, Shooting, p. 388-409, AB: A popular means of hunting, shooting for accuracy was encouraged and funded by the Federal Department of Militia and Defense in the pre-war years.
Chapter 22, Track and Field, p. 410-426, AB: Athletic events were a popular and a common feature at sports days, picnics and other celebrations at the turn of the century.

Alberta Sports History Library