DARTMOUTH, Nova Scotia — The 2007 Black Hockey And Sports Hall Of Fame Advisory Committee announced the nominees for the Black Ice Hockey And Sports Hall of Fame under the category of Sports Writer/Historian/Journalist.
A total of 12 individuals have been nominated. Only four individuals will be inducted into the Hall of Fame at this year’s inaugural Black Hockey And Sports Hall of Fame Conference scheduled for August 24-25, 2007 in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.
The Second Black Ice Hockey and Sports Hall Of Fame Conference scheduled for August 24-25, 2007, in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada is designed to be a forum for the celebration, promotion, and understanding of the Black Athlete and his or her role in North American Society.
The Conference offers scholars and students of Black Sports History a chance to come together for the purposes of meeting and networking all the while engaging in intellectual dialogue through comparative discussions and scholarly debate on various topics pertaining to the history of Black Sports.
Topics may include, but are not limited to the Black experience in terms of individual athletes, their achievements and life histories, their struggles for self- identity, their gender, individual self-labor, the role of slavery and its impact on sports and individuals, the role of religion, the educational process, and Black nationalism.
The purpose of the Hall of Fame Conference is to lay the foundation for a permanent Black Hockey and Sports Hall of Fame in Nova Scotia in an effort to usher in a new era of ideas and discussions on the historic evolution of North American Sports and the important role that Black Men and Women have played in reshaping American and Canadian sporting cultures.
The four inductees will be announced on February 16th. This year’s nominees are:
James W. Powers
Sports Reporter for the Acadian Recorder, Halifax, Nova Scotia (1895 –1910) . One of only a handful of white reporters to write about and promote The Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes. James W. Powers was born on December 13, 1864 in Nova Scotia. Beginning in 1895, at the age of 31, he became the first newspaper reporter to cover, and report in a positive way, the game accounts of The Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes. His reporting accounts for 80% of all of the recorded newspaper articles that exist of the League. He was the first Halifax reporter to promote the players – and the first to recognize the League as an important Canadian sports organization. His collection of works are on file in the Public Archives of Nova Scotia.
William C. Rhoden
A graduate of Morgan State University in Baltimore, William C. Rhoden has been a sportswriter for the New York Times since 1983, and has written the “Sports of the Times” column for more than a decade. Previously, he was a copy editor in the Sunday Week in Review section since October 1981 when he joined the newspaper. Before joining The Times, Mr. Rhoden spent more than three years with The Baltimore Sun as a columnist. Before that, he was associate editor of Ebony magazine from 1974 to 1978. He currently serves as a consultant for ESPN’s SportsCentury series, and occasionally appears as a guest on their show The Sports Reporters. In 1996, Rhoden won a Peabody Award for Broadcasting as writer of the HBO documentary Journey of the African-American Athlete. He is the author of Forty Million Dollar Slaves: The Rise, Fall And Redemption Of The Black Athlete (2006).
Donna Byard Sealey
Historian, writer and researcher Donna Lee Byard Sealey is a retired school teacher living in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. She is a graduate of the Nova Scotia Normal College and Dalhousie University. Over the years, she has written numerous articles on Black History. She is the author of the book Colored Zion: The History of Zion Baptist Church And The Black Community of Truro Nova Scotia (Gaspereau Press, 2000). Colored Zion tells the story of the descendants of slaves and freedmen, known as Black Loyalists of Guysborough, Nova Scotia. Of special note, is her efforts to document and preserve the church records of many of these black families. These records have allowed researchers to identify original Colored Hockey League families from the Truro, Nova Scotia region. It is an invaluable work; an essential geneaological study for any sports historian interested in the subject of Colored Hockey League studies.
Colin D. Howell
Author of Northern Sandlots: A Social History of Maritime Baseball (1995). Considered by many to be one of the most important Canadian sports histories ever written, Northern Sandlots is one of the few books on Canadian sports to chronicle the history of Black baseball leagues in the Maritimes and their place in Canadian sports. It is considered by many to be a landmark achievement and important regional history.
Dr. Robin Winks
Author of The Blacks In Canada (1971). For years, and until his death in 2003, Dr. Robin Winks was considered by many to be the single-most expert on Black Canadian history. His book is considered the finest book ever written on the history of Black Canadians and their role in Canada. It is a chronicle of Black Canadian Society from the 1600’s to the present. Professor Winks was a noted scholar in a wide range of subjects, including British imperial history, Canadian-American relations, comparative American history, conservation history and the theory and development of espionage. He chaired the Department of History at Yale 1996-1999.
Dr. Briglal Pachai
Considered the foremost expert on Black Nova Scotia History, Dr. Pachai is the author of numerous books on African and Black Nova Scotia history. He is the author of Blacks: A History of Nova Scotia and Beneath the Clouds of the Promised Land: Volume 1 1660-1800: The Survival of Nova Scotia‘s Blacks as well as Beneath the Clouds of the Promised Land: The Survival of Nova Scotia’s Blacks Volume II 1800-1989. His book Beneath the Clouds is considered the finest history book ever written on Black Society in Nova Scotia and serves as a lasting chronicle, legacy, and tribute to the Black struggle in Nova Scotia.
Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, Kevin Smith is a boxing historian and author who has researched the history of the black prizefighter for over 15 years. The founder of the Historical Society for Black Prizefighters, Smith has served as a consultant for the History Channel, the British Broadcasting Company, the British Museum, the National Portrait Gallery (London) and PBS as well as the International Boxing Hall of Fame and several historical societies nationwide. A member of the International Boxing Research Organization, his most recent book is entitled The Sundowners: The History of the Black Prizefighter 1870-1930, a 640 page biographical encyclopedia of boxing’s black practitioners. Mr. Smith has written two previous books on boxing, Boston’s Boxing Heritage (2002) and Black Genesis: The History of the Black Prizefighter 1760-1870 (2003), the first volume in his Caramel Colored Kings series.
Former Graduate Student, Saint Mary’s University, Nova Scotia. In 1996, Sheldon Gillis wrote a dissertation entitled: Putting It On Ice: A Social History Of Hockey In The Maritimes 1880 -1914. Though the manuscript was never published, it is notable for being the first academic study to document the history of The Colored Hockey League and its historic importance in Canadian hockey. What makes Gillis’ work even more amazing is his ability to locate primary source materials and to construct a detailed story and timeline on the League.
Dr. William A. Spray
Dr. Spray is the author of The Blacks of New Brunswick (1972) a little-known, and often overlooked, history of Blacks in Canada. Dr. Spray traces the history of black settlement in the province of New Brunswick, looking at slavery, social conditions, accomplishments, and possibilities for the future (1972 onwards). At the time of its release, the book was historic as it is one of the few attempts by Canadian historians to document an invisible history and to recognize the role of slavery in Canada’s past. What is most troubling about Dr. Spray’s work is the sense that we have lost so much of our history and are seeing only the tip of an iceberg. Most profound is the fact that this book was written at a time when many in academic circles believed there was no such thing as Black Canadian history.
Professor Crawford Kilian
Author of Go Do Some Great Thing: The Black Pioneers of British Columbia . First published in 1978, Professor Kilian’s book documents the history of Black pioneers in British Columbia and their contributions to the province’s early development. What makes this book amazing is the rich detail and character development that Professor Kilian presents to the reader. It is one of the first books ever written about Blacks in Canada wherein their stories are depicted in a positive and progressive context. It is a thought provoking and heart- wrenching book that reads more like a novel than a history. It is also an important book, as it documents an often invisible chapter in Canadian history.
Professor Colin A. Thomson
Author of Blacks in Deep Snow: Black Pioneers in Canada (1979). At the time of the books release, Professor Thomson was teaching College in Lethbridge, Alberta. What made this book unique and important was the documented accounts of Black Canadians in Western Canada – in particular references to the John Ware of Alberta – a former Black Slave turned Cowboy who is invented steer wrestling 20 years before the Calgary Stampede. On another front, what made the book troubling was Thomson’s ability to wipe away the cultural facade of the Canadian history and reveal the level to which slavery existed in Canada, showing how Blacks were kept in bondage even after slavery was abolished in 1833.
Dr. Garth Vaughan
Since 1996, Dr. Garth Vaughan has worked to promote the history of Black Nova Scotia hockey. He is the author of The Puck Starts Here (1996) one of only a handful of books to promote and acknowledge the role of Blacks in the early evolution of hockey. He is the first historian to credit the Colored Hockey League as the first hockey league to permitted goalies to go down on ice. Since 2000, he has promoted Black Hockey online through his Birthplace of Hockey website www.birthplaceofhockey.com . Of particular emphasis and study for Vaughan has been the history of Black hockey in the Windsor, Nova Scotia region. Until recently, he was the only Nova Scotia hockey historian to promote Windsor’s Black hockey heritage and to recognize its historic importance in Canada’s hockey history.