The Lou Marsh Legacy - Honouring Canada's Top Athletes


Saturday, September 19, 1936

Donated by Charles E. Ring, To be Awarded Each Year


It is not yet seven months since Lou Marsh left this world and all its engaging sport. Sport of every shape and kind of which he was for 40 years the most romantic booster and barefisted critic, as sport columnist and sporting editor of The Star. And today in The Star vault, just delivered by its donor, Charles E. Ring, sportsman memorial to Lou Marsh of a remarkable character.

It is a trophy to be awarded each year to Canada’s outstanding athlete.

It is a pylon of black marble, three feet high, on a black marble base. At the head of the pylon, in monel metal, is a replica of Lou Marsh’s newspaper column heading, Pick and Shovel, with Lou’s portrait engraved. Around the base in the same metal are the words “Lou Marsh Memorial Trophy.”

Under Lou’s column heading are little rows of three stars, such as he used in his column to separate his paragraphs. These stars will separate, year by year, the names of the winners of the trophy, the outstanding athlete of each year, as chosen by a committee that includes five of the ablest judges in the athletic world of Canada as designated by Mr. Ring, who presents this trophy to the youth, both men and women, of Canada.

A small replica of the trophy goes each year to the winner for keeps. So remarkable does this memorial in its unadorned simplicity and forthrightness, epitomize the character of the great Lou Marsh, it is likely to be one of the most cherished ambitions of the athletes of Canada to have their name carved on the black and gold Italian marble beneath the long familiar box heading which meant so much to the world of sport for a quarter of a century.

Open to Amateurs, Pros

Reflecting Lou Marsh’s interest in all forms of sport and something of the wide recognition accorded him as an authority in his chosen field, the new trophy will be national in scope and open to amateurs and professionals in all branches of sporting activity.

Because of its design and purpose and the rugged, loveable personality whose memory it will help perpetuate, the trophy seems destined to occupy a high and unique place in the dominion’s sports life.

Its existence makes possible for the first time suitable recognition of the Canadian athlete whose achievements during any year are regarded as outranking those of all other sports contenders. No other cup had been open to competition of men and women in all branches of amateur and professional sport. Like the daily survey Lou Marsh so notably conducted, the memorial covers a wide field and is all-inclusive.

The annual awarding of the trophy will be no easy task, and has been entrusted to a board of judges not only of splendid judgement and national outlook, but of men who knew Lou Marsh and understand what he himself would consider worthy of recognition in sports endeavour.

Designed by Hahn

In concept and construction, the trophy itself is unusual in its stark simplicity, designed to reflect Lou Marsh’s own nature and style of writing-blunt, outspoken, frank.

Its cold symmetry is relieved and enlivened by its artistic proportions. The whole trophy is beautiful, arresting.

As the years go on, the names of the winners will be added until they reach “the bottom of the page.” The trophy was designed by Emanuel Hahn, Canadian sculptor, from a suggestion by Lou Skuce, Toronto cartoonist. It was fabricated entirely in Toronto.

While Mr. Ring is presenting the trophy to The Star as trustee, the board of five judges will have sole discretion in making the award each year. The donor has suggested that , in picking the winner, they not only take into consideration the nature of the competition the athlete encountered and the importance of the events in which he competed, but the handicaps overcome to attain the prominence entitling him to consideration.

First award will be made at the end of this year to the athlete adjudged most worthy on his record of achievement during 1936.