Date of Birth: 1900
Place of Birth: St. John’s, Nfld.
Inducted: 1995 (Builder Category)
In addition to being an extremely successful businessman, Arthur Johnson was an outstanding hockey administrator, promoter and organizer.
When, in the early 1930s, the Prince’s Rink in St. John’s encountered financial difficulties, it was purchased by the Guards Athletic Association and Johnson accepted the position of secretary manager. A tireless promoter, he turned the facility into a paying proposition, organizing leagues, teams and tournaments, and arranging for a lengthy list of teams from outside St. John’s and Newfoundland to play exhibition games at the Prince’s Rink. It was through his efforts that leagues from Conception Bay played many games in the facility.
He was instrumental in establishing the basis on which the Newfoundland Amateur Hockey Association was built and evolved, serving as its secretary for the first 14 years. His records from that period provided much of the basis for hockey research and are used extensively for this purpose. He was an excellent secretary, keeping detailed records of all activities and all his extensive correspondence to many parts of the globe. The Nov. 28, 1941 fire that destroyed the Prince’s Rink also destroyed considerable amounts of his records.
As part of his promotion of hockey, Arthur Johnson wrote extensively in the local press and excelled as a public relations officer for all levels of hockey played within Newfoundland. His writings contained information on how hockey was played, its rules and the like. Naturally, he presented detailed statistics on all aspects of the game. His promotion included obtaining professional hockey individuals from various parts of Canada to assist in the development and coaching of hockey at the Prince’s Rink.
He also played a major role in the planning of the Prince of Wales Arena in St. John’s.
Involved extensively with boxing and track and field in addition to hockey, Arthur Johnson was inducted into the Newfoundland and Labrador Sports Hall of Fame in 1977.