On this day in #CBJ history: January 13, 1997, Columbus Hockey Limited made its formal presentation to the #NHL. Glad that worked out.
— Dave Maetzold (@DMaetzMedia) January 13, 2014
This puck is likely one of the earliest pieces of Columbus Blue Jackets memorabilia. On June 25, 1997 in downtown Columbus, 500 of these pucks were handed out to those who attended the press conference announcing the NHL expansion to Columbus, OH. Each puck is numbered and this particular example is number 6 of 500. There is another version of this puck handed out at another time that has the same orange text and NHL logo on one side and has "Commemorative Edition" x of 2000 on the other side.
|photo of Mr. Mac courtesy of the Columbus Blue Jackets (bluejackets.nhl.com)|
There's not a lot to say about it - after all, it's just a puck - but at the same time, it brings back wonderful memories of the earliest days of the announcement. Hockey has always had a strong following in Columbus, with the Checkers, Seals, Owls and Chill in particular over the years. The success of the ECHL's Columbus Chill in the 1990s was key to the NHL's interest in Columbus. While we've had good and bad times over the years, few can argue the excitement and pride we all share in being part of the best hockey league in the world.
Although I had to obtain this in an auction to benefit Jacket Backers instead of at the original event nearly 17 years ago, it's still a treasured part of my collection.
Recently, I was also able to add the following companion t-shirt which was probably released around the time of the second 'commemorative edition' puck. I can't tell you if these were also given away, sold or otherwise distributed and would welcome any information you can provide.
10 foot square vinyl banner
Corrugated sign, pom-pom, pennant and button