History with its flickering lamp stumbles along the trail of the past, trying to reconstruct its scenes, to revive its echoes, and kindle with pale gleams the passion of former days. ~Winston Churchill

23 February, 2014

Adventures in Wintersport

The end of another Winter Olympics! I really love the Winter Olympics-- for a lot of reasons (one of the big ones being I'm Canadian and we're good at them, haha), but most relevantly because they get us to watch and actually care about the kinds of winter sports most people never even think about otherwise. This blog has already covered such standard sports as skiing, skating, and hockey, so this post is dedicated to those 'weird' ones (plus a few classics I couldn't resist... plus a few winter sports just too weird for the Olympics!). 

We'll start with one of the odder (and one of my favourites): aerials! I have no idea when aerials became a 'proper' sport, but these fellows were certainly doing an early version of it in the 1950s!

J. R. Eyerman, LIFE © Time Inc.

Idaho, US, 1952. Source

J. R. Eyerman, LIFE © Time Inc.

Skier Jack Reddish, Idaho, 1952. Source

J. R. Eyerman, LIFE © Time Inc.

Skier Stein Eriksen, no date. Source

Ski jumping, a sport with a longer pedigree (the first recorded competition was in 1862, Norway):

National Archives of Norway

Oslo, 1966. Source

Ski-sailing... which never quite caught on:

Nationaal Archief

St. Moritz, Switzerland, 1938. Source

And ice-sailing, also never popular (but apparently reinvented in 1926!): 

Library of Congress

ca. 1910- ca. 1915. Source

Speed skating, a classic (though rarely thought about unless you participate, are Dutch, or live in Calgray): 

Nationaal Archief

Skaters ready for the start, the Netherlands, 1914. Source

Figure skating, another classic, but who could resist this outfit?

Mark Kauffman, LIFE © Time Inc.

Graham Sharp at the 1948 Winter Olympics, Norway. Source

And this hockey shot had to be included, of course, because of the tinting:

Musee McCord Museum

Hockey game on the McGill campus, Montreal, about 1910. Source

Curling-- though not quite an action shot:

Musee McCord Museum

Montreal, 1867. Source

Now this is high-octane curling action!

Musee McCord Museum

The winning shot of a curling match in Quebec, 1914. Source

Early bobsled (five-man!):

Nationaal Archief

1931. Source

Early skeleton:

Nationaal Archief

St. Moritz, Switzerland, 1935. Source

Not-that-early luge:

John Dominis, LIFE © Time Inc.

Women's luge at the 1972 Winter Olympics. Source

A combination of sled and ski jump... 

Nationaal Archief

London, 1933. Source

"Skijoring", described as an activity where people on skis are pulled by horses or cars:

Nationaal Archief

1930, though people were still doing this, with cars, in 1955! Source

Snowshoe hurdles:

Musee McCord Museum

Montreal, 1892. Source

And of course, the classic "Tobogganing in Swimsuits"!

University of Washington Libraries

Washington State, ca. 1925. Source

Bonus: a video of "Tennis on Ice"!

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