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© McCord Museum
McGill Hockey Team, Montreal, QC, 1904
Wm. Notman & Son
1904, 20th century
Silver salts on glass - Gelatin dry plate process
20 x 25 cm
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
© McCord Museum

Keys to History:

Sportswear has played an important role in the development of men's fashion. Frequently, clothing originally designed specifically as sportswear has crossed over into mainstream fashion and has edged out more formal styles.

In the 19th century, athletic activity and organized team sports were largely the preserve of the wealthy. The association with wealth and status lent increasing prestige to the clothing worn for sports.

The bold colours, comfort and casual styling of sportswear began to be seen in lively alternatives to regular dress. The sports jersey, for instance, was originally worn by hockey teams or tennis enthusiasts. As it was transformed into a casual, comfortable pullover sweater worn for everyday activities, its original association with sports was gradually lost.

"McGill University History" [on line], click on History, then McGill University History (retrieved June 10, 2003).


The origins of the modern pullover are easily recognized in 19th-century sports jerseys.


Until indoor hockey rinks became more common, hockey was an outdoor game. The first indoor hockey game is thought to have been played in Montreal.


This picture of the McGill hockey team was taken in 1904. The McGill team is featured in the first known photo of hockey players in uniform, taken in 1881.


The first McGill University hockey team was founded in 1877. McGill students are credited with helping to popularize the sport.

© Musée McCord Museum