Unseen James Naismith Photos and his Real Birthplace

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Unseen James Naismith Photos and his Real Birthplace

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The actual old family house and birthplace of Dr. James Naismith.

 

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A photograph of Annie Naismith, sister of Dr. James Naismith, outside the old family house and birthplace of Dr. James Naismith. This week after doing some research I stumbled upon these photos by accident. I put up a few of these photos on Facebook and history was  suddenly not what it seemed. We have always assumed Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of basketball was born in the stone home on Highway 29, just outside of Almonte and just past the Mill of Kintail exit. So I found out the rest of the story from local historian Rose Mary Sarsfield who got the information from another iconic local historian Marilyn Snedden.

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A photograph of Annie Naismith, the sister of Dr. James Naismith, outside the old family house and birthplace of James Naismith.

Clayton Historian Rose Mary Sarsfield- Here is the real story according to Marilyn Snedden who has done years of research in this area. The house pictured above where James Naismith first lived as a child, “was where Kay Grace and now Dianna Nanne live-the bungalow to the north of the Naismith House. There was a Peter Naismith in the Cheryl Patterson house early on and James’ father John worked there before he went to Fort Coulonge. I think Peter was an uncle of John but the family of course had all the same names.” The family moved to Fort Coulonge where James’ father started a sawmill but the mill burned down and then the father got typhoid fever and died.

 

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House on Highway 29 that  was once was once the childhood home of Dr. James Naismith, the creator of basketball, but he was never born there– now Evermore Wedding Events– and there is a heritage plaque in the front of it.

The mother wrote to her mother Janet Young (who lived in the house that we now know as the Naismith house on Highway 29) to send someone for her children. Her single brother Peter went and got the children. The mother also died and soon after the Young grandparents also died so the single brother Peter Young was left to raise the three Naismith children.

These photographs were part of a group of 6 photographs donated by Jim Naismith, the grandson of Dr. Naismith, and originally scanned and sent to him by Marilyn Snedden who lives near Bennies Corners near Almonte, Ontario.

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Peter J. Young and Annie Naismith outside their house in Almonte, Ontario

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A photograph of Peter J. Young, Dr. James Naismith’s uncle, and Annie Naismith, Naismith’s sister, standing outside a door to their house in Almonte Ontario.

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According to Steve Maynard this home is  at 81 Union Street in Almonte

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According to the file name of this digital photograph, this is photograph of family portraits of John Naismith’s Family. The John referred to could by the father of Dr. James Naismith, but this was not identified. Naismith also had a son, John Edwin Naismith. The portraits were not identified either. There are four photographs shown, sitting on top of a piece of furniture. This photograph was part of a group of 6 photographs donated by Jim Naismith, the grandson of Dr. Naismith, and originally scanned and sent to him by Marilyn Snedden who lives near Bennies Corners near Almonte, Ontario.

 

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The top photograph shows Dr. James Naismith and family sitting on a porch of a cabin. The photograph has information written on the side and on the actual photograph. At the bottom of the photograph is written “Uncle Jim, Mama ‘M….’ Jim ‘Papa Jimmy” a t Redfeather – 1922 (?)” . The exact date and the name of “Mama….” are hard to make out. According to this information Dr. Naismith is seated on the right, holding his standing grandson Jim, Mama (perhaps Maude Naismith) is seated in a rocking chair in the middle of the porch, and Naismith’s son, Jim is seated on the left. He is wearing a hat. The photograph is fro Red Feather, Colorado. These three photographs were sent to and donated to the Springfield College Archives and Special Collections by Lauren and Rachael Naismith, the daughters of Naismith’s grandson, Jim, shown in this picture. It is believed that one of them wrote the notes on the sides of the photographs.

Copies of three photographs of Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of Basketball, and his family. These include two photos taken in Lawrence Kansas on the campus of Kansas University. One of these shows two students doing a balancing routine with one student laying on his back in the grass with his knees bent and the other in a handstand being supported by the lower man’s outstretched arms and with his own hands on the students knees. Naismith is standing beside them, leaning back and pointing at the student doing the handstand. Buildings on the campus are seen behind them. The other photo is of Naismith and two students holding aloft lacrosse sticks while leaping in the air. The sticks meet above them. Again, buildings on the campus of Kansas State University can be seen behind them.

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According to the file name of this digital photograph, this is photograph of family portraits of John Naismith’s Family. The John referred to could by the father of Dr. James Naismith, but this was not identified. Naismith also had a son, John Edwin Naismith. The portraits were not identified either. There are four photographs shown, sitting on top of a piece of furniture. This photograph was part of a group of 6 photographs donated by Jim Naismith, the grandson of Dr. Naismith, and originally scanned and sent to him by Marilyn Snedden who lives near Bennies Corners near Almonte, Ontario

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This is a card that states that Dr. James Naismith received an honorary degree in 1910 from the official records at Springfield College (then the International YMCA Training School). At the top of this card, handwritten, it states, he received a “M.P.E. degree” which stands for a Masters of Physical Education.

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James Naismith’s Original Application to Springfield College

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A picture of Dr. James Naismith with fellow alumni in front of Alumni Hall on the Springfield College Campus. Among those in this picture is Thomas D. Patton, who was a student in the secretarial class that first played basketball.

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historicalnotes

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This document contains three hand-written pages and two typed pages. The typed pages are titled, “Biographical encyclopaedia,” and they describe the following aspects of James Naismith’s life: education, career, membership in societies, social and honor fraternities, military activities, civic societies, genealogy, honors, and athletics. The typed pages appear to be a more organized version of the first three hand-written pages. Who created this biographical information is not known.

Two photographs of Dr. James Naismith

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Article titled “Dr. J. A. Naismith succumbs at 78,” subtitled “Heart disease claims inventor of Basketball; once studied ministry,” published November 28, 1939 by Buffalo Eve News. Has headings in the body as “Combined other games” and “Was native Canadian.” Frank Mahan suggested that the game be called Naismith Ball, but Naismith objected.

 

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The 1968 Tribute to Naismith

Dr. Avison of Almonte

 

1940s Basketball Gals — Carleton Place High School

U Can’t Touch This! St. Mary’s Basketball Team 1990

About lindaseccaspina

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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