Alfred ‘Alf’ Edward Smith


Athlete : Hockey
Year Inducted: 1966
Date of Birth: June 3rd, 1873
Born in: Ottawa, Ontario

Alfred Edward Smith (deceased) was a Canadian professional ice hockey forward who played for the Ottawa Senators, (aka Silver Seven) and Kenora Thistles. He had two brothers who played senior-level hockey Harry Smith and Tommy Smith. He was captain of the team and also coached the team.

Smith began his hockey career playing for the Ottawa Hockey Club (Ottawa HC) of the AHAC in the 1890s. In 1897 he retired from the Ottawa HC. In 1898, he played for the Ottawa Capitals intermediate team, but did not finish the season because he was ruled to be ineligible.

In 1896, Smith had accepted a $100 bonus for play with the Capitals lacrosse team. By 1898, the Amateur Athletic Association of Canada ruled that he was ineligible for play in amateur hockey.

He would not play for several years, but did coach the Ottawa Hockey Club to the 1901 CAHL title.

In 1901–02, he returned to active play, as a professional, in the Western Pennsylvania Hockey League for Pittsburgh. The following year he returned to Canada to coach the Ottawa HC to their first Stanley Cup championship against the Montreal Victorias in 1903.

In 1903–04 he became reinstated as an amateur and he returned to play, playing right wing on a line that featured “One Eyed” Frank McGee. As a player-coach, he would eventually lead the team to consecutive Stanley Cup victories in 1904, 1905, and 1906, the club by then known as the Silver Seven.

In 1907, McGee retired and his place on the top line was taken by Alf’s brother Harry. At the conclusion of the 1907 ECAHA season, Smith moved west to play with the Stanley Cup champion Kenora Thistles, playing in the MPHL finals. He was also a player during their unsuccessful Stanley Cup challenge rematch versus the Montreal Wanderers, where his presence along with Harry Westwick caused the series to be played under protest. He played one final season with Ottawa in 1908, scoring 12 goals in 9 games.

In 1908–09, he had an eventful season. Lured back to Pittsburgh for the newly reformed Western Pennsylvania Hockey League, he was suspended from two teams for rough play. He returned to Ottawa and played with several former Silver Seven players on the Senators of the Federal League. He made time that season to coach the Ottawa Cliffsides to the first Allan Cup championship, only to lose it to Queen’s University in a challenge. This was his final season of play.

In 1909-10, he resumed his coaching career with Renfrew, the so-called “Millionaires” of the new National Hockey Association (NHA). He returned to coach the Ottawa Hockey Club in 1913 and coached the team until 1917. Smith later coached and managed teams in Moncton, New Brunswick, and North Bay, Ontario.

Along with Harvey Pulford, Harry Westwick and Russell Bowie, Smith was one of the final active players who had played major senior hockey in the 19th century. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1962.