Mi’kmaq Hockey History

According to hockey historian David Carter, there is credible evidence that a Mi’kmaq game similar to ice hockey could have influenced the development of today’s game. To Mi’kmaq communities of Nova Scotia, the game was Oochamkunutk, which they played on ice with skates made from animal jawbones. The first hockey sticks ever sold, the most popular with the best players for nearly a century, were Mic-Mac sticks. They were produced by Mi’kmaq craftsmen at Indian Brook First Nation Reserve starting at about 1899. They were sold by Starr manufacturing in Dartmouth, NS, and were considered the best hockey sticks in the world–the gold standard. Mi’kmaq craftsmen supplied Canada’s hockey sticks until the 1930s when two-piece laminated, factory-made sticks replaced them. The role of Indigenous people in the evolution of ice hockey cannot be understated.