Harty, John "Jock" (1874-1919)

[Jock Harty]
John Jock Harty in his New York Crescents uniform.

John Joseph Harty, more commonly known as Jock Harty, was born in Kingston in 1874.

As a young man, Harty attended Kingston Collegiate and then Loyola College of Collège Ste-Marie in Montreal. He developed a love of hockey while playing for the Loyola team in Montreal, something that would stay with him the rest of his life. He returned to his hometown to study medicine at Queen's and with him he brought a faster version of hockey that he had learned to play in Montreal.

From Montreal, he imported what would later become known as “the Harty system,” hockey that stressed fast, aggressive play. The Whig-Standard once described him as “one of the fastest Canadian hockeyists.”

In 1896, Harty scored six goals to lead Queen's to a victory in the Ontario Hockey Association Championship against Stratford. The third verse of the Oil Thigh is now mostly unknown to students, but it urges them to "remember Captain Curtis and the Conquerors of Yale," referring to the 1897 victory over Yale in New York City. Jock Harty was part of that team.

After graduating from Queen's in 1897, Harty did a medical internship in New York. While he was there, he played for the New York Crescents.

[photo of Jock Harty]
John Jock Harty

Eventually he returned to Kingston to take up a job with the Canadian Locomotive Company (CLC), of which he would become President.

Jock Harty maintained his link with Queen's and with hockey by coaching. He coached the CLC company team and the Queen's team as well, leading the Queen's team to a victory in the Allan Cup, then emblematic of North American hockey supremacy, over Ottawa in 1909.

Coach Harty insisted on fast and furious play from his players, barking instruction to them through a megaphone from the bench. In the summer, he sailed and raced speedboats. Sadly, it all came to a sudden end when on a business trip to London, England, in 1919 he contracted the Spanish Flu and died at London's Savoy Hotel.

1921, the coach’s grieving father pledged $25,000 for the construction of a new arena on Queen’s campus. In his memory, the 4,500-seat, all-wood Jock Harty Arena was built in 1922, with the money for its construction being largely supplied by friends, family, and classmates.