Jan 26, 2012, 2:57 PM EDT
In 1931, Toronto Maple Leafs owner Conn Smythe broke ground on Maple Leaf Gardens, which would go onto become one of hockey’s most hallowed buildings. The Maple Leafs won 11 Stanley Cups there, the first annual NHL All-Star Game was held there, Game Two of the 1972 Russia-Canada Summit series was held there…heck, Elvis Presley even played there.
On Thursday, another chapter in the Gardens’ rich history was unveiled — a metal time capsule Smythe buried behind a cornerstone in ’31. The capsule was opened during a ceremony at Ryerson University.
Found in the handmade copper box were copies of the local newspapers from Sept. 21, 1931 — the Toronto Daily Star, the Globe, the Mail and Empire and the Evening Telegram— a stock prospectus for Maple Leaf Gardens, the 1930-31 National Hockey League handbook and a 1930 Ontario Hockey Association rule book.
The inner lid of the time capsule was engraved “M.B. Campbell 124 Lindsay Ave 9/21/31.”
Ryerson University president Sheldon Levy said Campbell’s identity remains a mystery.
Another mystery is the small, ivory elephant found in the capsule. Two of Smythe’s great-grandsons were on hand at the ceremony and offered up their theories, though neither was entirely sure as to elephant’s significance. One heard it was from the Smythe family collection while the other thought it was to bring the Leafs good fortune.
“I’m not sure,” Stafford Scarlett told the Star. “I think it’s more of a good-luck charm. For 11 (Stanley) Cups, it worked.”
The Leafs played their last game at the Gardens in 1999. It has since been converted into a Loblaw’s grocery store and Ryerson’s athletic center.
(Image courtesy SportsLogos.net)
- Lindros, LeClair and Desjardins to be inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame 27
- It’s back! PHT’s Team of the Day summer series starts tomorrow 5
- Pens sign Spaling — two years, $4.4 million 13
- Agent: Subban hasn’t told me to make him NHL’s highest-paid D 30
- Devils sign Greene to five-year, $25M extension 18
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million 46
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ 59
- Gettin’ paid: Gardiner inks five-year, $20.25M extension with Leafs 15
- Report: Trottier to join Sabres’ coaching staff 21
- Blues sign former eighth overall pick Mueller 31
- Cashing in: Rangers sign Brassard to five-year, $25 million deal (63)
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ (59)
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million (46)
- Trotz plans to let Johansson, Kuznetsov, and Burakovsky compete for time at center (45)
- Richards: If not for the cap, half the league would want to play for Hawks (36)