James Naismith, inventor of basketball, urged the young William Morgan to attend the YMCA Training School (Springfield College) upon graduating from high school. He became the Physical Director of the Auburn (ME) YMCA after completing his studies. He stayed in Maine for just one year before accepting a position at the Holyoke (MA) YMCA.
While at Holyoke, he realized that basketball was too strenuous for the gym class of middle-aged businessmen that met at noon. He combined aspects of basketball and badminton to create a game he called “Mintonette”. Morgan was invited to demonstrate his new game for faculty and students at the Training School in nearby Springfield. While watching the game, the spectators suggested a new name, Volley Ball. The rest is history.
Morgan left the YMCA in 1897 to begin a career with General Electric and Westinghouse. He kept ties with Springfield College and the game he created, stating he was “content in the knowledge that the game brought a richer life to millions of people throughout the world.”