Same time, same place: HNL explores roots at special meeting

John Browne
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Officials of provincial hockey association will get together in same room where it all began 75 years ago

Hockey Newfoundland and Labrador has come full circle with plans to commemorate the inaugural meeting of the association Monday afternoon in St. John’s.

It was 3 p.m., Dec. 20, 1935 in the office of lawyer Robert S. Furlong at 315 Duckworth St. where the Newfoundland Amateur Hockey Association — as it was known then — was formed.

Hockey Newfoundland and Labrador (HNL) president Gerry Evans said the idea to return to same office where the initial meeting was held came from former NAHA president Don Johnson, who will be at Monday’s meeting as honourary chairman, along with provincial hockey legend George Faulkner. The other current HNL officers will also attend the meeting.

The special meeting, which is also set for 3 p.m., is the final project to finish off the 75th anniversary celebration of the association.

Corner Brook won the first Herder by defeating Guards in 1935 and Johnson said the hockey people of the day knew a good thing when they saw it.

“They basically said there’s no way this can be the end of this sort of competition,” he said.

According to a Telegram story on the association’s history, the initial steps were taken during the Corner Brook-Guards provincial final series in March of ’35 when a committee was formed to look into what was necessary to form a provincial body for hockey.

As Johnson points out, the only duty of the provincial association, which was formed at the end of the season, was to run the Herder Memorial Trophy playdowns.

“It was really all about the Herder,” Johnson said of the meeting that elected Furlong the association’s first president.

Evans said the purpose of Monday’s meeting will be two-fold.

“It’s basically a ceremonial meeting which will close out the 75th anniversary celebrations,” explained the HNL president, who said they will do “a little business” and a few motions might be passed during the half hour to hour-long affair.

 However, Evans pointed out that it will be a working meeting.

“They held an official meeting 75 years ago and so will we.”

Organizations: Newfoundland Amateur Hockey Association

Geographic location: Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador

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