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He Shoots, He Scores! A Love of Winter Games

This is the perfect time to write about winter sports with the excitement of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games fresh in our minds.  A few years ago I did an exhibit of the Library’s winter sport and game books from 1800- 1950. The following are selected examples of notable works I used for the display:

Sunday morning relaxation. Park Pond. Frequented by both school and mill boys and girls. Location: New Bedford, Massachusetts (1912)

Sunday morning relaxation. Park Pond. Frequented by both school and mill boys and girls. Location: New Bedford, Massachusetts (1912)

 Ice Hockey

“He Shoots, He Scores!” exclaimed premier hockey broadcaster Foster Hewitt who was the first to coin the phrase. Hockey enthusiasts have Mr. Hewitt to thank for bringing play-by-play broadcasts of the game to homes in Canada and the U.S., beginning in the 1920’s. If you are interested in the history of the sport, check out Mr. Hewitt’s 1938 Down the ice . You also might want to check out Canadian Broadcasting Centre’s Digital Archives- The Voice of Hockey: Foster Hewitt

Irving Brokaw and wife skating on Central Park Lake (1913)

Irving Brokaw and wife skating on Central Park Lake (1913)

Figure stating

In the early 20th century, George H. Browne, president of the Cambridge (MA) Skating Club, and Irving Brokaw, a national figure-skating champion, both made contributions to the techniques of ice skating. It  was Browne, author of the first how- to figure skating books in North America, who brought the international style to the United States.  Although Browne and Brokaw worked together, many consider  Browne the instructor and Brokaw the demonstrator.

Partnering with the Sloan Foundation and the Internet Archive, the Library is in the process of digitizing a collection of  pre-1923 books. Now you can read a copy of  Irving Brokaw’s 1913  Art of skating right in the comfort of your home.

George H. Browne’s  1900 Handbook of figure skating arranged for the use on ice can be read via Internet Archive.

Curling in Central Park, New York (1900-1906)

Curling in Central Park, New York (1900-1906)


 I have noticed much debate on what curling is and whether it’s a sport or game. Whatever your opinion of curling, its origins date back to 16th century Scotland. John Kerr’s 1890 History of curling and fifty years of the Royal Caledonian Curling Club  provides an in-depth history of curling (you can read a digital copy via Google Books –History of curling )


Sir Arnold Henry Moore Lunn, credited with inventing the modern slalom ski race in 1922, was a leading authority on skiing and authored many books the sport. His 1920 Cross-country ski-ing provided a practical how- to for the beginner and his follow-up 1921  Alpine ski-ing at all heights and seasons, which includes a discussion on avalanches, is recognized as a classic.  (As far as I can tell, these titles are not yet available in digital form) [Correction 1/23/14 Sir Arnold Henry Moore Lunn’s 1920 Cross-country ski-ing has digitized]

The Library has also digitized many of the early Spalding Athletic series. Here are some titles related to winter sports:

WPA Poster Skiing in the East (1936-39)

WPA Poster Skiing in the East (1936-39)

Spalding’s 1916 How to play ice hockey

Spalding’s 1913 How to become a skater

 Spalding’s 1921 Figure skating for women

Spalding’s 1899 Curling: complete rules and regulations, with diagrams of play  

You might want to take a look at: Olympic games handbook; containing official records of the seventh Olympiad, winners in previous Olympiads, the 1924 Olympic games, official Olympic athletic rules and the official world’s records and noteworthy performances ( The 1924 Summer Olympics hosted an International Winter Sports Week which included hockey, skating, and skiing.)

You can  find more of our digitized books from the Internet Archive Library of Congress page.

John Adams Trivia

The other day the science section head, Constance Carter, bought a John Adams doll at the White House Visitor Center for a gift basket (see pictures in this post). Since John Adams is the namesake of our building and the inspiration for Inside Adams we thought it would be fun to provide our readers with […]

Happy Mardi Gras!

Today’s guest author is Ellen Terrell, Business Reference Specialist Today is Fat Tuesday the culmination of the Mardi Gras season. This is a HUGE event for the city of New Orleans, my hometown. There are many ways to gauge success from a economic standpoint – revenues, hotel room occupancy, tax collection, money spent by the […]

Made with Love

4 Star French Chocolate Ice Cream? Chiffon and Velvet Pie?Pots de Chocolat (mousse)? Stuffed Figs au Chocolat? Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake? Valentine’s Day is coming up. If you are looking for something special to do for the ones you love I suggest including chocolate and home cooking straight from the heart (hearth). Our Chocolate: A Resource Guide […]

Stars in His Eyes

Today’s post is from guest author Margaret Clifton, science reference librarian. Four hundred years ago, in March of 1610, a pamphlet-like little book was published in Venice. The title page, as translated from New Latin*,sums up its contents with unabashed enthusiasm: “Revealing great, unusual, and remarkable spectacles, opening these to the consideration of every man, […]

Super (Advertising) Bowl!

The Library attracts many researchers looking for older print advertising and as a result developed The Emergence of Advertising in America: 1850-1920 collection in American Memory using the collections of Duke University, and a publication from a couple of past Library employees, Advertising in America: the first 200 years. It is interesting to contrast the […]

Celebrating African Americans in Science & Business

February is African American History Month. During this month, we frequently receive questions from students working on school projects related to African Americans in science and business. In general, students seek biographical information about a specific black scientist, inventor or business person. Before my time, back in the 1980’s, LC science librarian Vivian Ovelton Sammons […]