William G. Morgan introduced the sport of Mintonette to the world
On February 9, 1895, William G. Morgan introduced the sport of Mintonette to the world.
Morgan was the Director of Physical Education in the newly-established YMCA in Holyoke, Massachusetts. He met James Naismith who worked nearby in Springfield, and who had recently created the sport of basketball (see our post from 2016-12-21 at https://www.theglassfiles.com/manage/images/854/show).
Though basketball's popularity grew quickly, Morgan felt the sport couldn't be played by everyone. He set out to create a game that was a sort of combination of basketball, baseball, tennis, and handball, in which every position was important, and which could be played by anyone, regardless of age or physical fitness.
Morgan decided that the game would include a net to divide the court in half, so that the game could be played indoors in gymnasiums, as well as outdoors.
He then had to find a suitable ball that could be lobbed from one side to the other. He asked Spalding & Bros. to create a lightweight ball. They issued a successful prototype which was promptly used.
The object of the game was to keep the ball moving over a high net, traveling from one side to the other.
The name of Mintonette was eventually changed to Volleyball.