Constance Applebee

It's been around for over 4,000 years, back when Ancient Greece was still new, what is it? Field hockey. Constance Applebee, "the Apple," was born on February 24, 1873 in the town of Chigwell, Essex, Great Britain. As a child Constance was frail and was educated at home. One of the reasons she went to London's British College of Physical Education was to get stronger. Field Hockey was popular in England and Constance introduced it at Harvard University in Cambridge , Massachusetts in the summer of 1901 when she was taking a course there. She was invited to travel to Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY to teach field hockey. Later that year Constance and Harriet Ballintine of Vassar founded the American Field Hockey Association and Constance was elected President.

In 1904 Constance became to director of outdoor sports at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. In 1922 she helped found the United States Field Hockey Association. She produced and edited Sportwoman magazine. She opened the first hockey camp in the United States in Mt. Pocono, Pennsylvania in 1923. During World War II she raised money for ambulances. She sent four to England with the words "Donated by the Women Hockey Players of the USA" on the doors. 

Because of the efforts of Constance Applebee the first women's World Cup was played in 1974, in 1980 women's field was added to the Olympic games, in 1981 the first NCAA Field Hockey Championship was held. Constance Applebee died on January 26, 1981, in Burley, England at the age of 108.


Image courtesy of U.S. Field Hockey Association

By Patrick & John D., fourth grade, 2004