Roller Derby: Ranking with Baseball as the Nation’s Favorite Pastime
"One of the most dynamic personalities in big time sports, Leo A. Seltzer is perhaps the only man living who can claim the distinction of building a sport from a mere ‘brainchild’ to the world’s most heavily attended indoor sport in only seven short years! Originated in the Chicago Coliseum in 1935, the Roller Derby is now appearing in over fifty major cities throughout the United States twice yearly, as well as in Canada and Mexico.
"More than 400,000 boy and girl skaters from all parts of the world have tried to gain a place on the Roller Derby since its inauguration. So rigid are the requirements that of that great number only a little over one hundred teams have been able to qualify. They form the six Roller Derby teams now in operation—more teams will be added when new skaters, many of whom are being developed in the Roller Derby’s own training schools, are fully developed."
Leo Seltzer was chairman of the National Committee which governed all rules, skates, maps, plans, tracks, and special signal lights. Franchise holders controlled teams locally. In 1942, Minneapolis Roller Derby franchise holders were Harry Hirsch and Tony Stecher.
Black and white photos, circa 1941, from the recently digitized Marvin Juell negative collection (over 700 images). Juell worked for the Minneapolis Public Library. Red images and text from an event program dated July 31, 1942, which also included official Roller Derby rules and regulations and full line-up for Minneapolis and St. Paul.
found the coolest sticker ever
Danielle Gransaull / "Derby Villains"