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"World Champion" vintage "Jack Purcell Played" Badminton Racquet Donated to the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame!!

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Tennis11 of 18Dorothea Lambert Chambers "German" ceramic tumblerROD LAVER YOUNGSTAR WOODEN WOOD TENNIS RACQUET
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Posted 4 years ago


(312 items)

Well I was "poppin tags" the other day at the local V.V. near our summer get-away with my daughter and her friend, and came across this vintage racquet. This struck me as having some age and honest wear, but not abuse, so I "popped" on it at $3.99, figured it would make a good decoration for the trailer-mahal!!
This is made in Canada by Wright & Ditson, circa late 1920's-30's!
The wood "shape keeper" is a Dunlop, patented in 1927.
Genuine leather wrapped grip, wood head w/gutstring , steel shaft wound with some form of fine string winding.
Little did I know that our man Jack was a famous "player"!! Here is his story...

Jack Purcell - Born in Guelph Ontario, Jack Purcell began his badminton career in the 1920s and by 1924 had already garnered numerous championships on the court. By 1927, he had mastered the best in the province and was knocking on the door of the National Championships. He won his first provincial singles championship in 1927 and
defended this title for the next 4 years. He also won a doubles and two mixed titles and was a triple champion in 1930.
In 1928 he reached the finals of the Canadian Championships and in 1929, he won the Canadian Singles Championship and then went on in 1930 to retain his title.

When a top team of British stars led by six-time All-England champion J.F. Devlin toured Canada in 1930 Jack defeated the four best British players.
In England, home of the sport, Purcell continued his triumphs, winning the Surrey doubles in 1931. Several years later in 1933, upon turning in his amateur status to play professionally, Purcell became the world champion.
In order to provide more protection for the foot, Purcell helped to design the Jack Purcell sneaker originally introduced by the Canadian footwear division of B.F. Goodrich in 1935. It was Jack’s connection with the B.F. Goodrich Company, as well as the publication of badminton articles, that led to him being deemed a professional by the Canadian Badminton Association.
Jack challenged Jess Willard of the United States who held the World
Professional title and defeated him soundly. For the next 13 years, 1932-1945, Jack held the undisputed position of the world professional title. He defended against all the leading challengers from Great Britain and the United States.
Included in the challenges were Frank Devlin of Ireland, Basil Jones of Wales and all the top United States professionals including Noel Radford, Guy Reed and Ken Davidson.

A buoyant personality and possessor of one of the most
accurate and powerful smashes of all time, Jack was a great showman, a beautiful stylist, and possessor of unmatched stroke deception and accuracy. Extremely popular in his barnstorming tours in the United States and Europe, the U.S. Cosmopolitan and other American magazines paid tribute to this Canadian by referring to him as the" Babe Ruth" and "Bill Tilden" of badminton.

Jack Purcell's badminton career began winding down during World War II due to lack of
racquets and birds and Purcell retired as an undefeated champion. His post-badminton years were
spent in Canadian business circles, where he was a member of the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Jack Purcell died in Canada in 1991 at the age of 87

Who knew??
Now to find out what to do with it??
I can't leave this hanging on the trailer wall anymore now!
Any vintage racquet collections out there??


  1. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you Phil! A true" Canadian Sports Hero", and "World Champion", makes me wonder why this found it's way to the "Valuu Villaage"!!
    Very interesting life story though eh!!
  2. SEAN68 SEAN68, 4 years ago
    Great piece!!!!
  3. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you Sean for the nice comment!
    Thank-you Kevin & Sean for the "love"!!
  4. SEAN68 SEAN68, 4 years ago
    Your very welcome Pickrknows!!!!
  5. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you geo26e for the "love"!!
  6. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you Mani for the "love"!!
  7. AmberRose AmberRose, 4 years ago
    I spit coffee all over and laughed my rump roast off with the "poppin tags". Brilliant! Really interesting find. I had no idea who Jack was but now want to watch him play. Did you know when you found it or figured that you'd gamble?
  8. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    It was a total gamble A.R, ain't got me the hang of the new I-phone yet. My daughter googled him on the way home! Was I shocked, cause I left a few more there that did'nt look quite as old, but I'm pretty sure they had his initials on them!!
    I'ma gonna be in trouble when I get to be able to start looking up things right in the store!
    Thanks for the nice comment and the laugh. Sorry about the coffee mess though!!
    Hope you are well and enjoying your summer!
    I'm heading your way tomorrow, heading to Milwaukee for the 110th Anniv, I'll wave as I go past your part of town!!
  9. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you trunkman and mikelv85 for the "love"!
  10. AmberRose AmberRose, 4 years ago
    Well have fun in Milwaukee! Yep only about two hours away from Chicago. We took the kids there for spring break and had a blast. Their Science/Discovery center is fantastic.
    I use my phone, subtlety, at the thrifts frequently. Highly recommend it.
  11. SEAN68 SEAN68, 4 years ago
    and Pickrknows youll be an hour and 20 mins away from me !!! im in Appleton,wi im done at 1:30pm from work
  12. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you sarahoff, petey, Kerry, and Suebeejay for the "love"!!
    As an update on this, I contacted the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, and they are interested in having this as a donation to their collection!!
  13. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you Mani for the "love"!!
  14. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Up-date, this is now part of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame Collection in Calgary!
    They were thrilled to get it, and I'm happy that they did!!
  15. kerry10456 kerry10456, 4 years ago
    Congrats, did they put on display with donated by You?
  16. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Not sure Kerry, I never asked them that!. I don't even know what amount the tax receipt will be for, I guess them getting it was more important!
  17. kerry10456 kerry10456, 4 years ago
    Understand, was just wondering, might have seen in the future and say to grandchildren, "Look here kids, I seen this before it was donated by...." you catch my drift, Again very nice to have donated it to be shared with the world. :-)
  18. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thanks Kerry ,I hope to be able to do that also someday! Maybe they will let me in for free or something :)
  19. pickrknows pickrknows, 4 years ago
    Thank-you pw-collector for the "love"!!
  20. pickrknows pickrknows, 1 year ago
    Thank you all for the "loves" on this !!

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