New-York Historical Society's Bill Shannon Dictionary of New York Sports

Category Archives: H

Graeme Hammond


Graeme Hammond (Executive.  Born, Philadelphia, PA, Feb. 1, 1858; died, New York, NY, Oct. 30, 1944.)  A standout athlete at Columbia (1875-78), Graeme Hammond later became a national fencing champion and one of America’s leading amateur athletics executives.  Hammond ran track, rowed crew, and played football at Columbia, winning the I.C.4A. quarter-mile and half-mile in 1877.  He was an active fencer for 25 years (1881-1906), winning several national titles, and also served as president of the Amateur Fencers League of America from 1895-1926.  Hammond was president of the New York Athletic Club (1916-19) and the American Olympic Association (forerunner of the U.S.O.C.) in 1928.  He graduated N.Y.U. Medical School in 1881 and was a noted neurologist.

Rodney Hampton


Rodney Hampton (Pro football.  Born, Houston, TX, Apr. 3, 1969.)  A 225-pound running back, Rodney Hampton succeeded Joe Morris as the Giants’ top rusher in 1990.  Hampton missed most of that year’s Super Bowl championship run due to injury but contributed 1,069 all-purpose yards to the 13-3 regular season, playing 15 of the 16 games as a star rookie.  Over the next six seasons, he set a team career rushing record, racked up 18 100-yard rushing games, and was twice named to the Pro Bowl (1992-93).  Hampton gained just 81 yards rushing in his injury-ridden final year (1997) but finished with a then-team record 6,897 yards for his career.  His top seasons were 1992 (1,141 yards) and 1995 (1,182).  In the playoffs following the 1993 season, Hampton scored two touchdowns as the Giants beat Minnesota in a wild-card game.  He was a four-year starter at Georgia (where he surpassed some of the great Herschel Walker’s records) and was the Giants’ first-round draft choice in 1990

Lou Handley


Lou Handley (Swimming.  Born, Rome, Italy, 1874; died, New York, NY, Dec. 28, 1956.)  Though something of an athlete himself in his youth, Louis deBreda Handley achieved his greatest fame after emigrating to America as a swimming coach.  Handley was the principal coach for the Women’s Swimming Association of New York, the primary source for U.S. Olympic women’s swimmers from 1920-36.  Among the most famous swimmers turned out by this remarkable group were Ethelda Bliebtrey, Gertrude Ederle, Martha Norelius, and Eleanor Holm.  When the A.A.U. began national women’s swimming championships in 1921, Handley’s teams won the first nine titles, although the 1929 title was later revoked after Norelius and diver Helen Meany were suspended by the A.A.U.  Many observers thought the suspensions were more about envy than rules violations.  Primary W.S.A.N.Y. founder Charlotte Epstein, who chaired the A.A.U. women’s swimming committee, protested the suspensions.  Handley was also a part-time sportswriter, contributing many articles to New York newspapers over the years.

Ray Handley


Ray Handley (Pro football.  Born, Artesia, NM, Oct. 8, 1944.)  When Bill Parcells left after the 1990 season (and its climactic conclusion with Super Bowl XXV), Robert Ray Handley was given the unenviable task of succeeding him as head coach of the Giants.  Handley, a Stanford graduate who was a long-time assistant (1984-90) under Parcells, was not equal to the job (although changing circumstances also played a role).  The Giants dropped to 8-8 in 1991, losing three of their last four games and missing the playoffs.  Handley was dismissed Dec. 30, 1992, after a 6-10 season.

Ned Hanlon


Ned Hanlon (Baseball.  Born, Montville, CT, Mar. 16, 1857; died, Baltimore, MD, Apr. 14, 1937.)  Following a long career (1880-92) as a journeyman outfielder with such N.L. teams as Cleveland, Detroit, Pittsburgh, and Baltimore, Edward Hugh Hanlon became a highly successful manager.  Hanlon began as a playing manager in Pittsburgh (1889, 1891) with a jump to the Players League team in Pittsburgh in between (1890).  He took over a 12th-place team in the 12-team N.L. in Baltimore in 1892, moved them up to eighth in 1893 and then won three straight pennants.  Since the ownership of Brooklyn and Baltimore were intertwined, Hanlon was shifted to Brooklyn when it was decided that Baltimore was to be eliminated in contraction after the 1899 season.  He brought along some of his talent before the season started and Brooklyn (101-47) won the 1899 pennant by eight games.  In the more compact N.L. of 1900, Hanlon’s club (82-54) struggled a bit more but won by 4½ games.  Hanlon remained at the helm until age and raids by the upstart A.L. weakened his club and Brooklyn finished last in 1905.  He managed two more seasons at Cincinnati (1906-07) and retired with an overall 1,315-1,165 record.

Bill Hanna


Bill Hanna (Sportswriter.  Born, Kansas City, MO, 1862; died, Newfoundland, NJ, Nov. 20, 1930.)  For nearly four decades, William B. Hanna covered sports for New York newspapers, starting with The World in 1892.  W.B. Hanna was a byline that was to appear in four other papers in the morning field, starting with the Press in 1893 and then the Herald.  He spent 16 years at The Sun (1900-16) before returning to the Herald.  Hanna was one of only a handful of Herald writers retained after the merger that produced the Herald Tribune in March 1924, as his baseball and football expertise made him a valuable part of the new paper’s sports staff.  He was taken ill while covering a Dartmouth-Army baseball game at West Point, N.Y., in June 1930.  Hanna was sent to a sanitarium in New Jersey, where he died just over five months later

Merle Hapes


Merle Hapes (Pro football.  Born, Garden Grove, CA, May 9, 1919; died, Biloxi, MS, July 18, 1994.)  Joining the Giants out of Mississippi in 1942, fullback Merle Hapes returned from military duty in 1946 to play 10 games, rushing for 161 yards as well as receiving and doing some punting.  When the Giants reached that year’s N.F.L. championship game against Chicago (scheduled for Dec. 15 at the Polo Grounds), Hapes and quarterback Frank Filchock were approached with bribe offers by Alvin Paris, a known gambler, seeking to fix the game.  Hapes reported the bribe offer and was suspended for the game.  Filchock denied being approached, played the game, and threw two touchdown passes, though the Bears won, 24-14.  When Paris confirmed the bribe offer, Filchock was suspended for life by N.F.L. Commissioner Bert Bell, and Hapes was barred until 1954.  He never played in the N.F.L. again.

Darlene Hard


Darlene Hard (Tennis.  Born, Los Angeles, CA, Jan. 6, 1936.)  As the national intercollegiate champion in 1958 from little-known Pomona (Calif.), Darlene R. Hard was marked as a rising star in U.S. tennis.  Hard fulfilled those expectations by attaining the U.S. No. 1 ranking four times (1960-63) while winning eight titles in the national championships.  She twice won the singles title at Forest Hills, outlasting Maria Bueno, 6-4, 10-12, 6-4, in 1960, and beating England’s Ann Haydon, 6-3, 6-4, a year later.  In doubles, Hard won five years in a row (1958-62), twice with Jeanne Arth (1958-59), twice with Bueno (1960, ’62), and once with Australian Lesley Turner.  She continued to appear at Forest Hills into the Open era and won a crowd-pleasing doubles title in 1969, teaming with Francoise Durr in a rare triumph for sentimental favorites.

Bob Harding


Bob Harding (Sportswriter.  Born, New York, NY, Dec. 10, 1931; died, Baldwin, MD, Aug. 11, 1992.)  As a versatile writer who covered most college sports and was the first public relations chief for the International Soccer League in the Polo Grounds (1960), Robert T. Harding spent much of his career as the racing writer for The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J.  Harding joined the Ledger in 1965 and eventually succeeded Art Lea Mond as the racing writer.  Ill health forced his retirement in 1990.  A Yale graduate (1953), he rarely attended reunions but often boasted that he was the “lowest-paid member of my graduating class.”

Bob Harlow


Bob Harlow (Golf.  Born, Newburyport, MA, Oct. 21, 1899; died, Pinehurst, NC, Nov. 15, 1954.)  Robert E. Harlow was a sportswriter who left the Herald Tribune in 1947 to found Golf World Newsweekly magazine.  Harlow was a Penn graduate who had a long history in golf, starting in 1921 when he began managing pro golfers, including the celebrated Walter Hagen.  He was the first tournament manager for the early P.G.A. (1930-35) before turning to sportswriting with the Boston American.

About This Dictionary

The Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports is an open database of sports biographies maintained by Jordan Sprechman and Marty Appel. We welcome public and scholarly contributions and suggestions.

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About Bill Shannon

A prolific author, wire service sports reporter, long time Major League Baseball official scorer, football statistician, sports museum founder, theatrical agency owner and public ... read more

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