Lecture “How Basketball Started and Why it Grew So Fast” by James Naismith, 1931
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Pages copied from scrapbook of George D. Barclay, Springfield College Class of 1921. The first page is actually a description of the contents thought to have been made by the librarians at Springfield College. The first two pages are letters from E. Dana Caulkins, who was the chairman of the Wingate Memorial Lecture Series (where the lectures come from) to Mr. Barclay. The rest of the document, pages 4-19, are a copy of a lecture given by Dr. James Naismith, creator of Basketball, and George D. Barclay, given on December 19, 1931. The lectures were titled "Basketball and Why it Grew so Fast" by James Naismith, and "Basketball Coaching for High Schools" by George D. Barclay. The program of lectures and demonstrations referred to in the text is the Wingate Athletic Lecture Series. The lecture series is named after General George W. Wingate, who was the only president, up till his death on March 22, 1928, of New York City's Public Schools Athletic League. The lectures were set up to honor him and help teachers carry on the tradition of the Public Schools Athletic League. This lecture was the seventh in a series of lectures held by the Public Schools Athletic league in 1931. It was held at New York University’s School of Education. The pages contain the following sections: Chairman Caulkins introduction of Dr. Naismith, Naismith speaking about how basketball started, Naismith responding to questions from the Audience, Chairman Caulkins introduction of Mr. Barclay, Mr. George Barclay speaking about coaching basketball, and, lastly, Mr. Barclay’s team makes some demonstrations. Dr. James Naismith begin his lecture speaking about how he came to invent the sport of basketball referencing Dr. Luther H. Gulick’s challenge to him to come up with a new game. Naismith speaks of the class of men he was given to teach as being one of mature secretarial men who needed an hour of recreation during the work day. He speaks of going through the various recreational sports games of the time and taking aspects of those games that were useful for recreation but finding ways to adapt them for the indoors and to eliminate roughness that might cause injury. Naismith speaks of his original writing of the thirteen rules of basketball, posting them, them disappearing, and then being returned by a student – Frank Mahan who had taken them but then felt he should return them to the creator of the sport. Frank Mahan also receives credit from Naismith for coming up with the name for the sport. Naismith speaks about the first time he introduced the sport to his students and saw his idea in action. He also goes on to speak of how developments and changes in the sport came about. He speaks of how he thinks the sport fits into a physical education program and how the characteristics the sport develops in players relates to Christianity. Mr. George Barclay begins his lecture with his method of getting boys out for try outs and how he begins to cut them down into two teams. He states the importance of requiring potential players to have decent grades so that the coach does not end up losing players he has spent time working with midway through a season due to mid-term or final grades being too low to participate. He also mentions the importance of letting players know that they will be expected to keep a healthy diet and lifestyle as being part of the basketball team. Mr. Barclay speaks about using veteran players to help bring his attention to new talent and for demonstrating and leading tasks in tryouts and practices. Mr. Barclay then moves on to descriptions of accepted and widely used plays in the game of high school basketball. He lists and describes a variety of offensive formations; five-man offense, four-and-one offense, three and two offense, and three, one and one offense. He goes on to list and describe four types of defensive formations; zone defense, three and two defense, four and one defense, and man to man defense. Mr. Barclay mentions that Springfield College regularly uses and four and one defense. He finishes his lecture with a few hints for forwards and hints for guards before his team provides demonstrations of the plays he has just outlined for the audience. This digital document was scanned from a copy of the original article that was copied out of a scrapbook.
|Naismith, James, 1861-1939|
|Springfield College Archives and Special Collections|
Springfield College--Alumni and alumnae
Lectures on Basketball
Wingate Memorial Athletic Lectures
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