South Peace Hockey League fonds. — 1976-1986. — 30 cm of textual records.
Interest in organizing a hockey team in Grande Prairie started as early as December,1913, when a meeting was called in Billy Salmond’s hotel for that purpose. Hockey Clubs appear to get organized in the South Peace in the 1930s in Dawson Creek, Rolla, Pouce Coupe, Clairmont, Grande Prairie and Hythe with games taking place on outdoor rinks and in Grande Prairie in the Wapiti Arena. Dawson Creek “Athletic Association” appears to have won the “P.V.Croken Cup” most often during this period. By the 1940s the Northern Wheat Belt Hockey League was formed with Dawson Creek “Athletic Association”, Dawson Creek “Cardinals”, Hythe “Maple Leafs”, Sexsmith “Rangers”, Grande Prairie “Red Devils”, and Grande Prairie “Legionaires”. In 1948, at a meeting of the League, it was decided to divide the league into two divisions. Fort St. John and two teams from Dawson Creek were the northern division and Beaverlodge, Sexsmith, and two teams from Grande Prairie were in the southern division. Arenas were completed in Grande Prairie in 1949, in Hythe in 1950, in Dawson Creek in 1951, and in Fort St. John in 1954. In September, 1954, the “South Peace Hockey League” (S.P.H.L.) came into being and in 1961, it adopted a formal consititution and in 1963 adopted import restrictions and regulations. In the late 1950s League teams included Dawson Creek “Canucks”, Grande Prairie “Athletics”, Fort St. John “Flyers”, Spirit River “Rangers”, Fairview “Monarchs”, and Hythe “Mustangs”. In the 1963-1964 season the League contained the same teams (Fairview were the “Elks”) and coaches were Pete Wright for Grande Prairie, Ed Diachuk for Dawson Creek, Jack Lehner for Fairview, Rod Fonteyne for Fort St. John, Bud Laidler for Hythe, and Fred Hilts for Spirit River. By 1976, the beginning year of these archival records, the S.P.H.L. included the Grande Prairie “Athletics”, Spirit River “Rangers”, Fort St. John “Flyers”, Hythe “Mustangs”, and Beaverlodge “’77s”. Sturgeon Lake “Blues” appear in records only in 1977-78, Chetwynd Challengers joined in 1982, and Tumbler Ridge Coal Kings in 1984-85.
These records were received from Chuck Stojan and donated to the South Peace Regional Archives by Emil Stredulinsky in 2009.
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of game reports, League statistics, play off statistics, and schedules for the following teams: Grande Prairie “Athletics”, Spirit River “Rangers”, Fort St. John “Flyers”, Hythe “Mustangs”, and Beaverlodge “’77s”. Sturgeon Lake “Blues” appear in records only in 1977-78, Chetwynd Challengers joined in 1982, and Tumbler Ridge Coal Kings in 1984-85. Also included are a few pages of minutes and correspondence.
For more detailed statistics (1950-1965) refer to “South Peace Hockey League Record Book”
A copy of all records relating to game reports, league statistics, play off statistics, player statistics, schedules and league minutes were retained. Only duplicate copies of records were not retained.