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  Prairie Gold:
Sports Heroes From Saskatchewan
 
 
Photo 1 of 9. | | |

Phyllis Dewar

While still a school girl in Moose Jaw, Phyllis Dewar dominated all tree style swimming events in Saskatchewan. In fact, in 1934 when she travelled west to the British Empire and Commonwealth Games trials she was already the three-time one mile swimming champion of Saskatchewan. At the trials, however, Miss Dewar was a "prairie unknown". This did not stop her from swimming onto the team and to the Games in London, England.

Meeting the best in the empire at London, Phyllis won four medals (the best performance by any Canadian) as a result of her victories in the 100 yard free style (a new record) and in the 440 yard free style (a new record) and her participation as a member of the medley relay team and the 400 yard relay team, both of which were Canadian first place victories.

In August of this same summer Miss Dewar swam her way to the Canadian women's one mile swimming championship in Toronto, to win the Barker Gold Trophy. She completed the mile race in 29 minutes, 41 seconds. These performances were instrumental in her selection as the Canadian Women Athlete of the Year in 1934.

In 1935 Miss Dewar, set a new record at each of 100 yards, 400 yards, 1,000 yards, 1,500 yards, and set a mile record of 23 minutes and 32 seconds.

Phyllis was a member of the 1936 Canadian Olympic swimming team.

Installed in the Hall of Fame on May 22,1967.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 2 of 9. | | |

Sebastien Donison

Butch Donison, the youngest of the Donison brothers, was born near Avonlea, Saskatchewan. His career as a wrestler spanned fifteen years during which time he compiled an outstanding record. He is the only Canadian wrestler to have competed in every weight class in Provincial competition, placing first in all except one.

Between 1953 and 1967 Butch won thirteen Provincial Championships, and placed second on two occasions. At the Canadian level he won titles in 1955 as a featherweight and in 1966 and 1967 as a middle weight. He twice placed second at the Nationals, in 1958 and 1963.

At the 1966 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Kingston, Jamaica, Butch captured the silver medal in the middle weight division.

Butch attended the University of Denver on an athletic grant and placed second in the conference wrestling championships on three occasions, and second in the Rocky Mountain Region A.A.U. Championships.

After his last Canadian title in 1967 he retired from active competition. In addition to his participation as an athlete he was also involved as a coach at the Regina Wrestling Club between 1965 and 1967 and coached the University of Regina wrestling team in 1968 and 1969.

Installed in the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame June 5, 1982.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 3 of 9. | | |

Stanley Glover

Stan is one of the few men in Saskatoon to go to the Olympic Games as a member of the track and field team. He helped Canada gain a bronze medal in the 4 by 400 metre relay at the Amsterdam Games in 1928. Stan also competed in the 1st ever British Empire Games in 1930, helping Canada gain a silver medal in the mile relay.

His specialty was the 440 yard, an event that won him acclaim in high school, the Saskatchewan Open, the Western Universities meet and the Canadian Senior championships. Stan was also an excellent rifleman, leading the Nutana Rifle Marksmen team to victory at the Dominion championships in 1924. Stan's curling prowess should also be noted. Skipping his rink from the Nutana, his foursome won the Saskatchewan title in 1943 but because of the war no Brier was held.

Stan Glover died suddenly of a heart attack in 1964. His memory , however, will live on with his induction into the Saskatoon Hall of Fame in 1989.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

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Photo 4 of 9. | | |


Phyllis Haslam

Phyllis Haslam

Swimming (B.Sc. '34)

Phyllis Haslam graduated from Haverhill College in Toronto and entered the University of Saskatchewan in 1930.

During her four years (1930-34) at the University of Saskatchewan, she captured four individual championships and broke several inter-varsity records. She led the intervarsity team to four consecutive championships.

While a student at the University she broke the Canadian record in the 100 yards breast stroke and also lowered the mark for 220 yards.

At the 1934 British Empire Games trials in Hamilton, Ontario, she set a new World Record for 100 yards, 1.18 3/10, and a new British Empire time of 253.00 for 200 yards breast stroke. At the British Empire Games in London, England, Miss Haslam placed second and won a silver medal in the 200 metres. She swam the breast stroke of the 3x100 yard medley relay event in which the Canadian team won a gold medal.

Phyllis Haslam was installed into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame in 1974 and received the prestigious title of Officer of the Order of Canada in 1978.

Text courtesy of the University of Saskatchewan Wall of Fame.


Phyliss Haslam attended the University of Saskatchewan, 1931-34 and trained in a small pool on the campus. She showed her ability as a swimmer in 1931 when she placed second in a Provincial Mile Championship for the Wm. Wrigley Trophy. The next year she set a new Canadian record for the 100 yard breast stroke and also lowered the mark for 220 yards. Her time of 3.20 2/5 was faster than either Canadian or American records.

At the British Empire Games in Hamilton, Ontario, 1934 she set a new World Record for 100 yards, 1.18 3/10, and a new British Empire time of 253.00 for 200 yards breast stroke. At the B.E. Games in London, England, Miss Haslam placed second and won a silver medal. She swam the breast stroke of the medley relay event in which the Canadian team won and received gold medals.

Attending the University of Toronto, 1935-36, Miss Haslam competed in inter-faculty swim meets and continued to set a number of new records showing a high calibre of ability for a girl who started training in a pool 45 feet by 20 feet.

At time of installation citation read March 22, 1975.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame.

Copyright information: Over 50 years old - order from the University of Saskatchewan Archives

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Photo 5 of 9. | | |

Eleanor Jensen / Eleanor Haslam

Eleanor Haslam, track and field star from Saskatoon, was generally recognized as Canada's best woman sprinter from 1956-1960. During these years she dominated national championships and international games trials. In 1956, at the age of seventeen, she represented Canada at the Olympic Games in Melbourne, Australia; the following year she was rated in the "All Star" track and field listing as Canada's best over 60 and 100 yards, and second over 220 yards, while still of juvenile age.

In the 1958 British Empire Games trials in Saskatoon, she won three national championships, setting new Canadian records in the 100 and 200 yards, and anchoring the winning Saskatchewan 440 yard relay team. Later that year, at the British Empire Games in Cardiff, Wales she earned a bronze medal as a member of the 440 yard relay, was a finalist in the 220 yards, and recorded the best Canadian time over 100 yards.

Miss Haslam represented Canada in the 1960 Rome Olympics, turning in the best times for a Canadian in the 100 and 200 metre events and easily breaking the recognized Olympic record for 800 metres. Also in 1960, she exceeded the world indoor record in the 60 yard sprint, turning in 6.6 second clocking.

Installed in the Hall of Fame on March 30, 1974.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 6 of 9. | | |

Dan Matheson

Dan Matheson was born in 1893 in Prince Edward Island. At an early age he joined the Regina City Police. He is well remembered as "The Big Police Sergeant". His love and interest in wrestling flourished during these early years.

Matheson was Canadian Heavyweight Wrestling Champion in 1923, '24, '25 and '31. He was also a silver medallist in 1921 and 1932.

In 1919 he was instrumental in organizing the YMCA Boxing and Wrestling Club. By 1922 he was club president and developed the sport in Regina.

In early years travel funds were raised by staging wrestling cards. Matheson organized, sold tickets and performed. Funds were used by the athletes to travel to Canadian championships.

Matheson coached many outstanding athletes. Among them, Jim Trifunov, Earl McCready and Vern Pettigrew, who represented Canada at Olympic and Empire Games. Between them they brought 30 national medals home.

The honour and fame Matheson earned as an athlete was surpassed only by his ability and dedication as a leader. He remained involved with the Boxing and Wrestling Commission until his death in 1950.

Dan Matheson was honoured by his home province, Prince Edward Island, in their Hall of Fame. Today, Saskatchewan remembers Dan Matheson and his many accomplishments.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 7 of 9. | | |

Earl McCready

Earl McCready was born in Lansdown, Ontario but established a standard of wrestling achievement while living in Saskatchewan that may never be equaled.

He was Canadian heavyweight wrestling champion in 1926, 1927, 1928 and 1930; U.S. National AAU Heavyweight Champion in 1930 and British Empire and Commonwealth Games Heavyweight Champion in 1930. In addition while attending Oklahoma A and M, he was U.S. National Intercollegiate Heavyweight Champion in 1928, 1929 and 1930. Of particular note during his many 1930 accomplishments is the fact that he won every bout by a fall.

At time of installation citation read March 31, 1973.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 8 of 9. | | |

Lawrence Woodhead

Curly Woodhead excelled in the art of springboard diving and when he wasn't working on his intricate moves he was a leader corps member of the YMCA. Curly dove only during the summer months sharpening his skills at the Avenue H Riversdale Pool. Curly and some of his friends constructed the springboard. In 1932 the Saskatchewan branch of the Canadian Amateur Swimming Association was formed. At its first meet in Moose Jaw, Curly won the men's championship, a title that he held for 10 years.

In December 1937, although he hadn't practiced since July, Woodhead placed fourth in the three-metre event when the British Empire Games trials were held in Vancouver. Curly had nine dives in his repertoire, including a reverse somersault in layout position, and a forward two and one-half somersault. He also spent a great deal of time working with other young divers and passing on his knowledge to them. His influence and reputation set the goal for other divers.

He was inducted into the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame in 1988.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

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Photo 9 of 9. | | |

We hope that you have enjoyed reading about some of Saskatchewan's sports heroes.

If you have a photograph of someone or a team listed in Prairie Gold that we do not have a photo for and are willing to donate it, please contact us.

Due to their nature and sometimes ambiguous origin the photographs seen here and those on file at the Local History Room are continuously being updated with new information. Some of this information comes from dedicated research done by Local History staff. However some of the biggest 'breaks' have come from the public... Those that remember the people, places and events in the photo are our biggest informational resource and we ask that if you have any information about the photos to contact the Local History Room at lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca or phone (306) 975-7578.

Come and visit the Local History Room the next time you are at the Frances Morrison Library.

Thank you.

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