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12-29-2013, 10:13 AM
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Canadiens1958
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Canadian Arena Company

Canadian Arena Company, started with the Montreal Arena and grew. Owned the Canadiens at one time. Brief historic outline follows:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brookfi...ice_Properties

In this thread will look at their impact on hockey and the NHL leading up to the 1967 expansion.

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12-29-2013, 11:45 AM
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^^^ Pretty incredible huh? From its foundings as an arena facility developer & franchise owners to what its become today absolutely mindblowing. That companies (and its principals) influence on the growth & development of both professional & to a lesser extent amateur hockey in Canada & the US during the games formative years one of the many untold stories in the history of the business of hockey. Rather deep waters circa 1900 through pre-67 Expansion to say the least.

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12-29-2013, 01:10 PM
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A Few Questions

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^^^ Pretty incredible huh? From its foundings as an arena facility developer & franchise owners to what its become today absolutely mindblowing. That companies (and its principals) influence on the growth & development of both professional & to a lesser extent amateur hockey in Canada & the US during the games formative years one of the many untold stories in the history of the business of hockey. Rather deep waters circa 1900 through pre-67 Expansion to say the least.
Worked mainly in the shadows but a few questions are worth asking.

Did not get the 1931 MLG contract - Thomson did. The Canadiens / Leafs rivalry really picked-up after Montréal was reduced to one team and CAC were owners.

After purchasing interests in the Canadiens - 1935, their role in the demise of the Maroons.

Looking at building an arena in Philly, yet no interest in Hamilton, Ottawa or QC. Red Dutton's tenure at league offices is interesting given one historical franchise linkage - Québec Bulldogs --> Hamilton Tigers --> New York Americans. Cynical view would be that franchise was doomed the minute the Americans were suspende.

Other minor questions remain but these are the main ones

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12-29-2013, 10:06 PM
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Thomson as I understand it won the bid of 10 tendered as they were the least expensive at app $990,000 and that included excavation & lumber but not the steelwork (contracted out at a further cost of app $100,000). You've gotta figure CAC one of those bidders.

Hamilton had the Barton Street Arena or "Hamilton Forum" as it was called which went up in 1913, and looks an awful lot like the old Montreal Arena whereby the support columns obstruct views and are dangerously located right at board & play levels. Heres an interior shot, none other the Rejean Houle there from about 67/68 while playing for the Montreal Jr. Canadiens at the Barton Barn against the Hamilton Red Wings.....

www.ohlarenaguide.com/hforumhoule.jpg

Whats curious is that the Hamilton Arena is indeed very similar to the Montreal Arena built by CAC. Im wondering if they didnt have something to do with its construction along with eventually the Quebec Bulldogs sale to Hamilton (Tigers) in 1919/20. A man by the name of Percy Thompson was one of several owners of the Hamilton Forum and paid Frank Calder, not the NHL, but Frank Calder directly $5000 for the Quebec franchise. Hamilton then was the 5th largest city in Canada so I suppose its possible they at that time optimistically hoped it would continue to grow. Hard to say, and more research required to get to the bottom of all of this including the teams eventual relocation to New York.

As for the demise of the Maroons etc, will do some more digging around on that as well. Looks interesting thus far. Some Directors from CAC seemingly having in their hands in a lot of pies on both sides of the border and in some curious locales.

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12-29-2013, 10:51 PM
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Back Further

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Thomson as I understand it won the bid of 10 tendered as they were the least expensive at app $990,000 and that included excavation & lumber but not the steelwork (contracted out at a further cost of app $100,000). You've gotta figure CAC one of those bidders.

Hamilton had the Barton Street Arena or "Hamilton Forum" as it was called which went up in 1913, and looks an awful lot like the old Montreal Arena whereby the support columns obstruct views and are dangerously located right at board & play levels. Heres an interior shot, none other the Rejean Houle there from about 67/68 while playing for the Montreal Jr. Canadiens at the Barton Barn against the Hamilton Red Wings.....

www.ohlarenaguide.com/hforumhoule.jpg

Whats curious is that the Hamilton Arena is indeed very similar to the Montreal Arena built by CAC. Im wondering if they didnt have something to do with its construction along with eventually the Quebec Bulldogs sale to Hamilton (Tigers) in 1919/20. A man by the name of Percy Thompson was one of several owners of the Hamilton Forum and paid Frank Calder, not the NHL, but Frank Calder directly $5000 for the Quebec franchise. Hamilton then was the 5th largest city in Canada so I suppose its possible they at that time optimistically hoped it would continue to grow. Hard to say, and more research required to get to the bottom of all of this including the teams eventual relocation to New York.

As for the demise of the Maroons etc, will do some more digging around on that as well. Looks interesting thus far. Some Directors from CAC seemingly having in their hands in a lot of pies on both sides of the border and in some curious locales.
You have to go back to the creation of the NHL and the desire to handpick NHL Toronto ownership for the Arena Gardens.

When the Montreal Forum was built the original tenants were the Montreal Maroons, an expansion team, with a fifteen year lease. The Canadiens followed with a ten year lease. In 1935 when the Canadiens lease expired, there was talk about the team moving or folding. CAC takes an ownership position and the team stays. Maroons leave with a
one year to go. Canadiens get a number of their top and better players.

MLG, yes the public tender, around ten bidders is common knowledge. However MLG was built very quickly June 1, 1931 onwards to the start of the start of the 1931-32 regular season, November 12, 1931.

The building of MLG has always been a Canadian feel good story from the depression:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maple_Leaf_Gardens

Let's ask some hard questions. Through the 1930-31 season, Conn Smythe and the Leafs were tenants at the Arena Gardens. What was the expiration date on the lease? Was CAC angling for an ownership position? Reading the MLG construction narrative it looks like the perks Smythe received encouraged early construction by providing funds for a lease buyout.

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12-30-2013, 12:06 AM
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Let's ask some hard questions. Through the 1930-31 season, Conn Smythe and the Leafs were tenants at the Arena Gardens. What was the expiration date on the lease? Was CAC angling for an ownership position? Reading the MLG construction narrative it looks like the perks Smythe received encouraged early construction by providing funds for a lease buyout.
The harder the better my friend. I'll see what I can dig up.

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12-30-2013, 01:41 PM
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Heres a tidbit, intriguing bit of inf contained in the article pursuant to the Lease with Arena Gardens but the problems seemed greater than just that. I'll keep looking but so far not finding anything that CAC beyond likely being a bidder on MLG played any major role in Smythes pursuit of a new building nor franchise ownership/acquisition in Toronto. I did find a brief speech as well made by Frank Mahovlich in Parliament outlining Smythes financial MO in approaching J.P. Bickell etc but that already well known & discussed...

www.heritagetoronto.org/arena-gardens/

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12-30-2013, 01:54 PM
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Nice

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Heres a tidbit, intriguing bit of inf contained in the article pursuant to the Lease with Arena Gardens but the problems seemed greater than just that. I'll keep looking but so far not finding anything that CAC beyond likely being a bidder on MLG played any major role in Smythes pursuit of a new building nor franchise ownership/acquisition in Toronto. I did find a brief speech as well made by Frank Mahovlich in Parliament outlining Smythes financial MO in approaching J.P. Bickell etc but that already well known & discussed...

www.heritagetoronto.org/arena-gardens/
Nice contribution. So lease conditions,quality of the venue, arena capacity, gate receipts and ice time were factors. So the why question has a pretty solid answer. Leaving the mechanics of the how questions.

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12-30-2013, 02:18 PM
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Nice contribution. So lease conditions,quality of the venue, arena capacity, gate receipts and ice time were factors. So the why question has a pretty solid answer. Leaving the mechanics of the how questions.
Ya. And so now here we get into the guts of things, the mechanics. And a long & winding road it be. From the CAC to Charlie Querrie, Eddie Livingstone & Frank Calder, Philadelphia & all the rest of much of which echo's to this day. I havent read it but came across an apparently highly detailed book on the very subjects were discussing here now called Deceptions & Doublecross: How the NHL Conquered Hockey that appears to have come out several years ago, written by Holzman & Nieforth.

Heres just a sampling.... http://www.pensionplanpuppets.com/20...ory-21-endgame

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12-30-2013, 03:53 PM
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Great Stuff

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Ya. And so now here we get into the guts of things, the mechanics. And a long & winding road it be. From the CAC to Charlie Querrie, Eddie Livingstone & Frank Calder, Philadelphia & all the rest of much of which echo's to this day. I havent read it but came across an apparently highly detailed book on the very subjects were discussing here now called Deceptions & Doublecross: How the NHL Conquered Hockey that appears to have come out several years ago, written by Holzman & Nieforth.

Heres just a sampling.... http://www.pensionplanpuppets.com/20...ory-21-endgame
Great stuff. Guess would be short term leases given the various lawsuits and a bidding process for the MLG construction that may have allowed CAC to participate effectively precluded them from winning.

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12-30-2013, 04:27 PM
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^^^ Indeed. Its just a mess of legal wrangling, the NHA/NHL playing some serious duck & dodge with Livingstone while Querrie & the Toronto Arena Management Company really acted deplorably throughout the various court proceedings. As well, one of the articles linked re-addresses the whole naming of the team to the Leafs, and that in fact Querrie & the Arena Mgmnt Company had been planning just that themselves for a good 6mnths before Smythe bought them.

The CAC through one of its Directors tabled an offer (superior apparently to what Smythe paid of $160,000) to purchase the Toronto franchise which by then was owned in part by J.P. Bickell & move them to Philadelphia. A couple of years previously to Smythes purchase, Calder & the NHL awarded a franchise to Pittsburgh when it became known to them that Eddie Livingstone was planning on setting up a rival league & had his sights set on the Steel City.

Thus the short-lived Pittsburgh Pirates, who were then moved to Philadelphia & re-named the Quakers before succumbing to a financial death. Yet the league kept that franchise on the shelf along with later the Americans & you had some serious triangulations going in Montreal with a possible relocation of the Canadiens & Maroons to Pennsylvania. In almost every case & instance, the hand of the CAC usually unseen involved in it somehow, and Frank Calder fighting a rear guard sleazeball fight against Livingstone.

Not dissimilar modus operandi employed decades later by the NHL in planting franchises in potential WHA markets, blocking out competition, control of facilities. The New York Islanders for example born of exactly that and a franchise thats never, even during its Dynasties shown much of a profit & has done nothing but bleed red ink.


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12-31-2013, 12:27 AM
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Hamilton had the Barton Street Arena or "Hamilton Forum" as it was called which went up in 1913, and looks an awful lot like the old Montreal Arena whereby the support columns obstruct views and are dangerously located right at board & play levels. Heres an interior shot, none other the Rejean Houle there from about 67/68 while playing for the Montreal Jr. Canadiens at the Barton Barn against the Hamilton Red Wings.....

www.ohlarenaguide.com/hforumhoule.jpg

Whats curious is that the Hamilton Arena is indeed very similar to the Montreal Arena built by CAC. Im wondering if they didnt have something to do with its construction
It might also be that this was just a style of arena building for a time. If you can find an interior shot of the old arena that hosted the major league Regina Capitals of the old WCHL/WHL (home to the first radio hockey broadcast in 1922, before Foster Hewitt's first broadcast in Toronto), you'll see that it has a very similar style of support columns right up against the ice. It could be a building by the same architects/company/off the same blueprints, or just a style copied for a period of years until another arena style gained favor. By the way, that old building in Regina was still standing a couple years ago, but was supposed to be taken down.

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12-31-2013, 12:57 AM
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^^^ Regina Exhibition Arena or Queen City Gardens as its sometimes called, yes, oldest still standing arena in Canada. Long time home of the Regina Pats before they moved out in 1977. Built in 1919. Plans to tear it down but not sure if executed as of yet. Ive seen pictures of it, interior shots & ya, same dealeo with the support columns at Hamilton & Montreal Arenas' so perhaps yes, cookie cutter plans. Whether or not the Canadian Arena Company had a hand in building it, I know not.

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12-31-2013, 08:57 AM
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^^^ Regina Exhibition Arena or Queen City Gardens as its sometimes called, yes, oldest still standing arena in Canada. Long time home of the Regina Pats before they moved out in 1977. Built in 1919. Plans to tear it down but not sure if executed as of yet. Ive seen pictures of it, interior shots & ya, same dealeo with the support columns at Hamilton & Montreal Arenas' so perhaps yes, cookie cutter plans. Whether or not the Canadian Arena Company had a hand in building it, I know not.
Evraz Place, which runs the exhibition grounds, no longer advertises the building, so it's either down or going to be taken down. That might make CAC's Forum the oldest standing major league arena building in Canada, although it's not used for hockey any more. Going back to pre-professional major leagues, the Aberdeen Pavilion in Ottawa is a building that's still standing and hosted some amateur major league hockey even earlier, having hosted the Stanley Cup series in Jan., 1904. In the U.S., the Bruins old Boston Arena, now Matthews Arena, was built at the same time as the Forum and is now home to Northeastern University men's and women's hockey. If the Regina building is gone, those are the oldest extant arenas I know of, although I've heard rumor of an ancient wooden covered skating rink in Nova Scotia from the late 1800s that might still be standing.

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12-31-2013, 11:24 AM
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^^^ Interesting and yes, according to wiki Stannus Arena is the oldest still standing in Windsor NS. Went up in 1897. Wood construction and almost looks like a Church. Was originally built to warehouse lumber but converted to a hockey rink & used through the 60's. Apparently today used by a car dealer to store vehicles. In 1898 Aberdeen Pavilion went up in Ottawa & though used for hockey for many years, been ages since it has hosted games or teams so that line as well broken. Matthews also an old beauty, not even remotely recognizable to its original configuration but for the fact that not a seat in the house is less than about 30' from the ice surface. Must be an incredible place to play & watch. It however was closed several times due to fires & reno's so its chain as continuously used broken...

which brings us to Galt Arena in Southern Ontario. Built in 1921 & opened in 1922 with an unbroken string of continuous use. Quite the impressive facade, very "brooding" and interior with of course updates through the years. Gordie Howe played a year of Junior for the Galt Red Wings, also one time home to the Galt Black Hawks & Rockets etc. Id hazard to guess we have a few Members here who likely played there.... also a link in this link to another beautiful old building, the William Allman Arena in Stratford Ontario.

www.ohlarenaguide.com/galt.htm


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12-31-2013, 11:50 AM
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Aberdeen Pavilion

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Evraz Place, which runs the exhibition grounds, no longer advertises the building, so it's either down or going to be taken down. That might make CAC's Forum the oldest standing major league arena building in Canada, although it's not used for hockey any more. Going back to pre-professional major leagues, the Aberdeen Pavilion in Ottawa is a building that's still standing and hosted some amateur major league hockey even earlier, having hosted the Stanley Cup series in Jan., 1904. In the U.S., the Bruins old Boston Arena, now Matthews Arena, was built at the same time as the Forum and is now home to Northeastern University men's and women's hockey. If the Regina building is gone, those are the oldest extant arenas I know of, although I've heard rumor of an ancient wooden covered skating rink in Nova Scotia from the late 1800s that might still be standing.

According to sources in Ottawa, the Aberdeen Pavilion has heritage status. The latest Lansdowne development is going on around it.

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12-31-2013, 11:56 AM
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^^^ Interesting and yes, according to wiki Stannus Arena is the oldest still standing in Windsor NS. Went up in 1897. Wood construction and almost looks like a Church. Was originally built to warehouse lumber but converted to a hockey rink & used through the 60's. Apparently today used by a car dealer to store vehicles. In 1898 Aberdeen Pavilion went up in Ottawa & though used for hockey for many years, been ages since it has hosted games or teams so that line as well broken. Matthews also an old beauty, not even remotely recognizable to its original configuration but for the fact that not a seat in the house is less than about 30' from the ice surface. Must be an incredible place to play & watch. It however was closed several times due to fires & reno's so its chain as continuously used broken...

which brings us to Galt Arena in Southern Ontario. Built in 1921 & opened in 1922 with an unbroken string of continuous use. Quite the impressive facade, very "brooding" and interior with of course updates through the years. Gordie Howe played a year of Junior for the Galt Red Wings, also one time home to the Galt Black Hawks & Rockets etc. Id hazard to guess we have a few Members here who likely played there.... also a link in this link to another beautiful old building, the William Allman Arena in Stratford Ontario.

www.ohlarenaguide.com/galt.htm
OK, I know I'm wandering far from the focus of the thread, but the old arenas are intriguing. The two you mention here remind me a lot of Windsor Arena, which I think has seen continuous hockey since it was built in 1925. In the pictures you posted, if you'd combine the bowl of the Galt Arena and the ceiling of the Allman rink, you'd feel like you were in Windsor Arena (which, of course, hosted the NHL Detroit Falcons for a year before they moved to the Olympia, becoming in time the Red Wings). Another that I'm sure is continuous is Eveleth, Minnesota's Hippodrome, like the Galt Arena built in 1921 and opened in 1922. First game was a minor pro event on Jan. 1 of that year. After an industrialist there imported Canadian hockey players to give his workers some entertainment, Eveleth hockey grew to lay claim to being America's hockey capital, a label still on its water tower; it's home of the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame and a bunch of NHLers such as Frank Brimsek, several early Minnesota state high school hockey champions, and John Mariucci, the godfather of Minnesota and U of Minnesota hockey. There might be older continuously used arenas in New England or Upper Michigan, but that's the oldest I know here. By the way, I misstated when I wrote that Boston Arena opened at the same time as the Montreal Forum. Both first saw NHL hockey in 1924, but the Arena was actually built in 1910, the building with the first artificial ice in North America, a couple years ahead of Toronto's Arena Gardens. I think a rink in Belgium actually was the first in the world to use artificial ice shortly before that. OK . . . back to the original topic of this thread!

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12-31-2013, 12:07 PM
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According to sources in Ottawa, the Aberdeen Pavilion has heritage status. The latest Lansdowne development is going on around it.
Ya, in 1983. Victorian architecture. Also known as the Cattle Castle. It hosted the Silver Seven (a SC played there) and a few other clubs in the early 1900's & Ottawa did look at refurbishing it to make it hockey specific at one time. If you look at the wiki page, you can see that it is essentially just one big empty hull of a building inside, and used to house cattle & livestock during the Central Canadian Exhibition. In Ottawa at that time a prominent family by the name of Dey (sp?) built several rinks that the original Senators along with other clubs used as home base, Aberdeen only used sporadically.

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12-31-2013, 12:36 PM
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Ya, in 1983. Victorian architecture. Also known as the Cattle Castle. It hosted the Silver Seven (a SC played there) and a few other clubs in the early 1900's & Ottawa did look at refurbishing it to make it hockey specific at one time. If you look at the wiki page, you can see that it is essentially just one big empty hull of a building inside, and used to house cattle & livestock during the Central Canadian Exhibition. In Ottawa at that time a prominent family by the name of Dey (sp?) built several rinks that the original Senators along with other clubs used as home base, Aberdeen only used sporadically.
I was in Ottawa to see a Sens game once and went by the Pavilion. A door was open so I went inside. Big concrete floor they would have flooded for skating and games. Like other rinks at the time, it wouldn't have worked well on warmer days, as there was no ice plant. If they put up some bleacher seats, you could imagine the 1904 Cup games between the Winnipeg Rowing Club and the Silver Seven, who had just started to be referred to as the Senators around that time. You're right the Sens never made it a regular or permanent home, home being the Dey rinks and later the artificial ice Ottawa Arena. There's supposed to be a plaque where at least one of the Dey rinks stood that attests to some of that history.

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