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

Tag Archives: Madison Square Garden

Harry M. Stevens

Harry M. Stevens (Executive.  Born, London, England, June 14, 1855; died, New York, NY, May 3, 1934.)  Harry Mosley Stevens may be one of the few sports figures to have invented a business.  Stevens’ efforts created the modern sports concessioning business, although he always referred to himself as a “publisher and caterer.”  Stevens came with his […]

Freddie Spencer

Freddie Spencer (Bicycle racing.  Born, Westfield, NJ, Aug. 9, 1902; died, Rahway, NJ, Feb. 9, 1992.)  During the last Golden Era of bicycle racing in America, no star was bigger than Fred Spencer, who in 1925 accomplished a feat never duplicated when he won the American Pro Sprint championship and two six-day races in the same […]

Walter St.Denis

 Walter St. Denis (Sports editor.  Born, Pembroke, Ont., Mar. 19, 1877; died, New York, NY, Feb. 15, 1947.)  When boxing returned to New York as a legal sport in 1911, the Frawley Law did not permit official decisions on bouts.  Fans (and bettors) turned to newspaper experts for the determination of winners (and losers).  Of the […]

John Reed Kilpatrick

John Reed Kilpatrick (Executive.  Born, New York, NY, June 15, 1889; died, New York, NY, May 7, 1960.)  An end who earned All-America honors at Yale in 1909 and 1910, John Reed Kilpatrick was a military officer, a construction executive, a boxing promoter, president of the Rangers for the better part of three decades, and […]

Pat Kennedy

Pat Kennedy (Basketball.  Born, Hoboken, NJ, Jan. 28, 1908; died, New York, NY, June 16, 1957.)  Starting a career in 1928 that made him the most famous basketball referee of his time, Matthew P. Kennedy was, to say the least, flamboyant.  Kennedy would rush across the court pointing at the miscreant when a foul was […]

Jimmy Johnston

Jimmy Johnston (Boxing.  Born, Liverpool, England, Nov. 28, 1875; died, New York, NY, May 7, 1946.)  Emigrating to the U.S. at age 12 in May 1888, James Joy Johnston was to become one of the leading boxing managers and promoters in his adopted country.  Johnston was to manage four world champions – welterweight Ted (Kid) […]

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson (Track and field.  Born, Philadelphia, PA, July 24, 1914; died, Harrisburg, PA, Dec. 17, 1992.)  A high school track star from Plymouth (Penna.), Benjamin Johnson was perhaps the best U.S. sprinter of the 1930s who never ran for his country in the Olympics.  As a 17-year-old prep runner, he missed by one spot […]

Bill Jennings

Bill Jennings (Hockey, golf.  Born, New York, NY, Dec. 14, 1920; died, Byram, CT, Aug. 17, 1981.)  Distinguished by steel-gray hair and a suave demeanor, William Mitchell Jennings was the legal mastermind behind the acquisition of the controlling interest in Madison Square Garden by Graham-Paige Corp. from James D. Norris in 1960.  Jennings later served as […]

Jane Jarvis

Jane Jarvis (Organist.  Born, Vincennes, IN, Oct. 31, 1915; died, Englewood, NJ, Jan. 25, 2010.)  On Apr. 17, 1964, Shea Stadium opened and Mets fans were treated to a new experience.  Jane Jarvis entertained the crowd at the organ.  A noted jazz artist and respected teacher, Jarvis was only the second organist to play regularly at […]

Mike Jacobs

Mike Jacobs (Boxing.  Born, New York, NY, Mar. 10, 1880; died, Miami Beach, FL, Jan. 24, 1953.)  For more than a decade, Michael Strauss Jacobs was the most powerful promoter in boxing.  In 1907, Jacobs opened a theatre ticket brokerage office in the lobby of the Hotel Normandie.  He soon branched out into handling sports […]

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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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