Hockey History 101: The Windsor Swastikas Take to the Ice

From the file cabinet: since no one really wants to read about the Sabres right now, here’s a curious old post from March of 2011. Enjoy the weirdness.

And you thought the “Broadstreet Bullies” looked mean.

Have a gander at the Windsor Swastikas – a Canadian team from Windsor, Nova Scotia, that enjoyed a lot of regional success during its 1905-16 tenure:

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Not the kind of pennant you'd buy the kids these days.

What are the odds of a name like that, eh?  Well, this was the happy go lucky pre-WWII and pre-Nazi era, when the swastika symbol still stood for good luck and fortune.  (Yea, the Nazis pretty much screwed up everything.)  Ok then, who were these guys, and just how good were they? From “BirthplaceOfHockey.com:”

The players (were) all of notable Windsor family names – people like W.A.”Billy” Stephens who later had a department store, and “Mac” Geldert who ran a dry goods store, Walter Regan who was a grocer in Falmouth, R.G.Morton a clothier in Windsor and Halifax, Frank “Sanky” Brown, a stone mason, H.S.Smith, a coal merchant, Clarence McCann, a trainman for the Dominion Atlantic Railway, Frank Sharpe, a N.S. Dept. of Highways engineer, “Ses” McMonagle a well known barber, and of course, and “Lew” Shaw, one of Nova Scotia’s greatest hockey players, who ran a very popular pool room.

Word has it that the Swastikas were flashy, exciting, entertaining and very seldom beaten.

Two Rovers who starred for the famous Windsor “Swastikas” gained wide recognition for their stick-handling and scoring ability. Lew Shaw is an honored inductee of the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame, having been inducted in the founding year of the organization. Blaine Sexton left the team to fight for his country in World War I and took his hockey gear overseas with him. He is credited with advancing organized hockey in Britain and Europe. He became known as England’s “MISTER HOCKEY” for two decades. Newspaper articles of the time show that he was the best and fastest hockey skater, player and goal scorer in Europe. He played hockey for England in the 1924 and 1928 Olympics.

Sexton was a big reason why Britain actually won a bronze medal at the Olympics of 1924.

The boys from Windsor weren’t the only ones to carry the doomed logo on their chests.  In fact, the name was actually pretty popular before Hitler started launching V2 rockets over the English Channel.

 

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The Fernie Swastikas. My guess is the surly one in the bottom row, center, wasn’t afraid to cross-check an opponent into a snow bank.

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The Edmonton Swastikas. No history on how much those pantaloons slowed down their skating.

The Fergie Swastikas formed in 1922, and went on to immediately blitzkrieg the Banff Winter Carnival Women’s Ice Championship in 1923, taking home the “Alpine Cup.”

Not much is known of the Edmonton Swastikas, save for the fact they wore those fancy pantaloons, and that their goalie was stuck with a stick from at least before 1915, (a style which was wide on one side only).

The “Mister Hockey” of Britain.  A bronze medal for England in 1924.  Pantaloons as acceptable wear for competitive hockey.  Goalstick trivia. I’d say we have all learned a lot today.

Class dismissed!

Go Sabres.

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