Roderick McColl – Kingston

Ice Hockey Arrives at Kingston, Ontario – 1886

Roderick McColl

Roderick McColl

Roderick McColl of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia was cadet #149 at the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario (established in 1876). He attended R.M.C. from 1882 until 1886. Born and brought up in the era when Ice Hurley and Ice Hockey were two names for the same game in Nova Scotia, Roddy McColl is credited with having taught his fellow RMC students to play the new winter ice game which he had learned on the frozen ponds of Pictou County back home in Nova Scotia. One of Nova Scotia’s earliest ambassadors of sport, he acted as a Goal Umpire in the first games played in Kingston as the Royal Military College and Queen’s University students began playing Ice Hockey on the frozen waters of Kingston Harbour in 1886.

Capt. Sutherland Concedes to Nova Scotia

Capt Sutherland
Capt James T. Sutherland

In 1943, Captain James T. Sutherland, the much-revered Kingston hockey icon, made a “Kingston Claim”for Ice Hockey’s origin which was accepted by the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association. Later, when it was pointed out to him that hockey sticks had been imported from Nova Scotia for Kingston’s first games, he conceded that Ice Hockey must have been first played in Nova Scotia. “Otherwise”, he added, “why send to Halifax for sticks?” This effectively ended the ‘Kingston Myth’ which he had created.


Beaton Claims for Nova Scotia Toronto: In April, 1898, Dr. A. H. Beaton, secretary of the Ontario Hockey Association, wrote an article on Ice Hockey which appeared in the prestigious “Canadian Magazine”. “Nearly twenty years ago,” he wrote, “hockey, as a scientific sport, was introduced into Upper Canada from Nova Scotia, the latter being the indisputable home in Canada of this game.”

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