The History of the Blackhawks
The Chicago Blackhawks were founded in 1926 and joined the NHL during the league's first expansion into the United States.
The NHL Chicago Blackhawks were founded in 1926 and joined the NHL as one of three teams during the league's first wave of expansion into the United States. The first owner of the franchise, Frederic McLaughlin had been a commander with the 333rd Machine Gun Battalion of the 86th Infantry Division during World War I. This division was nicknamed the "Blackhawk Division" after Chief Black Hawk, a prominent Native American in the history of Illinois.
McLaughlin, having no experience with hockey, still took it upon himself to control most of the franchise including being his own General Manager. He was eager to promote the sport in the United States especially by promoting American hockey players. The Chicago Blackhawks soon became the first NHL team with an all-American-born lineup.
The Chicago Blackhawks hockey team had a rocky start in the NHL, but by 1934 they won their first Stanley Cup, and repeated the achievement in 1938. When McLaughlin passed away in 1944, ownership of the Blackhawks passed to Bill Tobin who was basically a puppet for the Red Wings owner, James E. Norris. Until the late '50's the Blackhawks were ignored and served only to boost the power of the Detroit Red Wings.
Finally, under new ownership in the late '50's, the Blackhawks began a period of revival, and in 1961 they won the Stanley Cup for the first time since '38 by beating the mighty Montreal Canadians in six games. However, the Hawks would lose the Stanley Cup the following year to Toronto, and in the years that followed, the Blackhawks would become one of the most jilted teams in the National Hockey League. Despite making the playoffs year after year, the Blackhawks would not raise Lord Stanley's Cup for close to 50 years.
In 2010, a young Chicago Blackhawks NHL team led by Patrick Kane and Marion Hossa beat the Philadelphia Flyers in six games to end their Stanley Cup drought, and the first Chicago sports championship since the Bulls won the NBA Finals in 1998. The subsequent parade and celebration was a great example of the passion and loyalty displayed by sports fans in Chicago.
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