In 1948, Canada had no official hockey team to enter at the Winter Olympics. The Allen Cup-winning team, which normally would have represented the country, lost its amateur status after it was determined that some of its players were receiving financial compensation.
Canada quickly cobbled together a team, largely with players from the Canadian Air Force along with some other Armed Forces members. At first, the team played other amateur clubs, such as university clubs, but it fared poorly and was often booed off the ice. But after a few player changes (all amateurs), the team started to win some exhibition games. When they lost their goalie to injury, a player from the Toronto Transit league was added.
This lineup headed to the Olympic Games and, you guessed it, they won the Gold Medal.
There’s lots online, and you can read about this at greater length, including learning the names of all the players.
The team sweater pictured here was commissioned to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the winning team. The autographs on the front are hand-signed by all the surviving team members alive in 2008. It’s hard to find something like this outside of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Please contact us if you would like to see it and learn more.