Canadian Amateur Hockey League in 1899


Canadian Amateur Hockey League (CAHL) was the second league dedicated to Hockey and rose out of its predecessor, the Amateur Hockey Association of Canada (AHAC). The CAHL was formed because of a dispute between teams of the AHAC.

The CAHL was created when a number of teams refused to let a team from a lower league, the Ottawa Capitals, to join the then-AHAC. Initially three teams withdrew from the AHAC and this lead the remaining two teams to eventually follow suite. The five teams that made up the AHAC then decided to create a totally new league in order to put the issue to rest. The CAHL further developed the sport in its transition to professional, with a growing focus on revenues.

1899 was Season 1 of play for the Canadian Amateur Hockey League and took place 125 years ago.


Elite League

Season Length

January 7, 1899 to March 4, 1899

Season Champion

Montreal Shamrocks

# of Teams


Season Standings

Season Playoffs (Stanley Cup Challenges)

The Montreal Shamrocks as regular season winners were given the Stanley Cup and expected to defend it. They received a challenge from the MHA‘s Winnipeg Victorias. This time, it was decided that they would play a two-game total goals series in February 1899.

The first game was won by Montreal 2–1. Winnipeg’s captain Dan Bain injured his eye and did not play in the second game due to hemorrhaging behind the eye.

The second game ended in controversy. With Montreal leading the game 3–2 with about 12 minutes left in the game, Montreal’s Bob MacDougall violently slashed Winnipeg’s Tony Gingras. As Gingras was carried off the ice, referee Bill Findlay only called MacDougall for a two-minute minor. Angry that he should have been accessed a larger penalty, Winnipeg went into their dressing room in protest. Insulted, Findlay abruptly went home, but returned after officials followed him on a sleigh and persuaded him to return. Once back at the rink, the referee gave Winnipeg 15 minutes to return to the ice themselves. They refused and thus Findlay disqualified the team and declared Montreal the winners. 4,000 were attending the Winnipeg Auditorium rink to hear returns of the game by telegraph.

The Montreal Shamrocks also defended the trophy against Queen’s University of Kingston, Ontario. The game was played half under Ontario Association rules and half under CAHL rules. The Shamrocks won 6 to 2.

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