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Born in Michigan: The Lost History of Pro Hockey in the U.P.’s Copper Country

This week on Found Michigan, Lou chats with Dan Mason, the University of Alberta professor who unearthed the forgotten history of the first-ever professional hockey league — the International Hockey League (IHL) — and its roots in Michigan’s Copper Country. Dan stumbled across the IHL while researching the career of an early two-way lacrosse/hockey star named Newsy LaLonde, and when he noticed a hole in Newsy’s statistical career from 1904-1907, he went digging to find the reason why. The explanation? Many players like Newsy played in a pre-NHL professional hockey league known as the IHL during those three years. And though the IHL was just a blip in hockey history, the league changed the game forever.

Audio: 10:30
Music: "The Hockey Song" by Stompin’ Tom Connors; "Gordie Howe is the Greatest of Them All" by Big Bob & The Dollars

[The Calumet Miners of 1904-05 nurtured two Hall of Fame talents: Jimmy Gardner and Hod Stuart. Photo courtesy of Red Jacket Media.]

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