Sunday, December 6, 2009

Weldy Young

The Ottawa area was one of the true hot spots of hockey in the 1800s and early 1900s. Powerful teams and legendary players brought multiple Stanley Cups to Canada's capital city.

The very first Ottawa hockey legend likely was Weldon "Weldy" Young. He and brother George were original members of the Ottawa hockey team in 1889.

Young was described as "Ottawa's only world-calibre hockey player in the early 1890s," Young was said to be a terrific skater and puck rusher. But he was also zestful for the physical game, hitting opponents with passion.

Though he was a well respected hockeyist, he was not well liked. He was said to be a mean-spirited grump "with a permanent scowl on his face." Still, he was named as the Team Captain and certainly provided color.

For all his success in Ottawa, history seems to best remember Weldy Young for almost being Ottawa's opponent. After the turn of the 20th century Young was caught up in the Klondike gold rush, investing heavily in claims in the Yukon. He was recruited by the Dawson City team that challenged Ottawa for the Stanley Cup in 1905.

Young agreed to play, but was unable to participate. He held down a job as civil servant, and at the time championship a federal election was being held. Young had to oversee the election.

By the end of the decade Young, like so many other fortune seekers, fled the Klondike. He returned to Ontario where he invested in the silver mines of the Haileybury area, while also taking up refereeing. He later became involved with the management of the Haileybury hockey team that merged with the NHA.


Anonymous,  March 20, 2010 at 1:04 PM  

Weldy's grandson was Garry B Young. He was chief scout for the Boston Bruins in the late 60's and early 70's. He coached the California Golden Seals and the St Louis Blues 74-75.

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