on April 12, 2004
Cecil Harris has chronicled the history of black hockey players attempting to professionally compete in the National Hockey League. Parellels abound with the countless Afro-American baseball players attempting to play professional baseball from the early 1900's to the ground breaking Jackie Robinson inclusion in 1947.
Bonafide NHL candidates like Herbie Carnegie and Manny McIntyre were denied entry into the NHL simply because they were black...yet they were permitted to play for the Quebec Aces along with Jean Beliveau...and excelled.
Read about Willie O'Ree becoming the first black to play in the NHL with the Boston Bruins. Enduring the insults and indignites just to professionally compete in the game of hockey, O'Ree was hockey's version of Jackie Robinson.
Today, thanks to Carnegie and O'Ree, we can view black players like Jarome Iginla leading Calgary's Stanley Cup quest, as one of the major stars of the 21st century.
Carnegie, McIntyre, O'Ree and countless others (meticulously outlined in Harris' text), clearly led the way for today's Iginla, Anson Carter and Nathan Robinson...
Cecil Harris provides a timely snapshot of a welome addition to the NHL, the black professional hockey player competing at the highest level as skilled players.