Dr. James Naismith Biography

Looking for a Dr. James Naismith Biography? Need more information about the inventor of basketball? Well...you've come to the right place!

I'm sure you all know that Dr. James Naismith invented the game of basketball - as well as the 13 Original Rules of Basketball. These were obviously his greatest and most recognized professional accomplishments.

Without him, this great game we all love might have never been invented. So we should all be very thankful and fortunate that he had the creativity to invent and develop the game of basketball.

Having said that, James Naismith also had many other major accomplishments and highlights in his life. This Dr. James Naismith Biography will help give you some insight into this man's amazing life. It will give you a closer look at the life of the man who invented basketball.


Dr. James Naismith Biography

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  • Born: November 6, 1861 in Almonte, Ontario, Canada.

  • Died: November 28, 1939.

  • Height: 5-feet-10 inches.

  • Weight: 180 pounds.

High School

  • Almonte High School (1875-77, 1881-83).


  • McGill University - Montreal. Philosophy degree - graduated 1887.

  • Presbyterian College - Montreal. Religion degree - graduated 1890.

  • YMCA Training School - Springfield, MA. Physical education degree - graduated 1891.

  • Gross Medical School - University of Colorado. Medical degree - graduated 1898.

College Playing Highlights

  • Silver Wickstead Medal for Best All-Around Athlete - McGill University, 1885.

  • Gold Wickstead Medal for Best All-Around Athlete - McGill University, 1887.

  • Silver medal for his work in theology - Presbyterian College, 1890.


  • Chaplain and captain, First Kansas Infantry, 1914-17.

  • First Kansas Infantry, Mexican border, 1916.

  • YMCA secretary - France, 19 months - US, 3 months, 1917-19.

Career Highlights

  • Invented the game of basketball.

  • Developed the original 13 rules of basketball.

  • As the game grew in popularity, he neither sought publicity nor engaged in self-promotion.

  • Author of numerous articles and books.

  • Elected (after his death) to the American Academy of Physical Education, 1941.

  • Physical education director - McGill University, 1887-90.

  • Physical education instructor - Springfield College, 1890-95.

  • Physical education director - Denver YMCA, 1895-98.

  • Associate professor and chapel director - University of Kansas, 1898-1909.

  • Professor and university physician - University of Kansas, 1909-17.

  • Received master of physical education, 1910.

  • Was ordained as a Presbyterian minister, 1915.

  • Physical education professor, 1917-37.

  • Received Doctor of Divinity degree - McGill University, 1939.


I hope you have enjoyed this Dr. James Naismith Biography. As you can see, he truly was a great man with many incredible accomplishments throughout his life. Inventing the game of basketball was indeed his most famous achievement; however, his life was filled with many more great highlights and events!

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