In 1920, Canada won their very first Olympic Gold Medal in Hockey. The team was called the Winnipeg Falcons and their story is amazing.
In 1898, a group of Icelanders formed the Icelandic Athletic League. They only had two teams in their league; the Icelandic Athletic Club (IAC) and the Vikings. In 1908, the two teams agreed to become one team.
The Falcons Hockey Team was started a few years later in 1911. They finished the season at the bottom of the league. This entire team was made up of people of Icelandic descent who were not able to play on the other Winnipeg teams due to racial prejudice. The next year they did great and their success continued to grow in the following years.
During the 1916-1917 season, seven Icelandic team-members joined the Canadian military. By April of 1917, they were on their way to Europe to fight in WWI. The team members were back home by May 1919 and the team reorganized.
The 1919-1920 season was incredible. The team went on to win the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp, Belgium giving Canada its first Olympic Gold Medal in Hockey.
The 1920 Winnipeg Falcons were inducted into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame. You can learn more about the team members and their celebrated stories on the website:
Olympic Gold Falcons Hockey Team