These handbooks have an interesting lineage. Just as the National Federation Rules booklets can be traced back to the Spalding Men's Guides, so too can these handbooks. As Naismith explained in his 1941 book, Basketball, Its Origin and Development, The Joint Basketball Committee was formed in 1915 to consolidate, NCAA (college), YMCA, and AAU rules. The National Federation of State High School Athletic Associations joined the Joint Basketball Committee in 1929. It is not surprising to see a merging of many rules and officiating booklets in these early years. Naismith's book has a great explanation of this on pp. 106-108. In 1919-20, Spalding Men's Guides began to include a "Part IV"rules section at the back of their booklets. This was a "tear-away" or removable rules booklet. Around 1920, the Joint Basketball Committee began to take this Part IV rules section and distribute it as a stand-alone handbook. Finally, in 1935-36, the rules handbook became known as the "Handbook of the National Association of Approved Basketball Officials". "The Executive Committee of the National Board of the National Association of Basketball Officials" - As simple as that! This handbook retained an exact version of the Part IV rules and the familiar red leather covers. However, it now contained other information including a list of approved officials across the U.S., and even a few images showing basketball techniques. It had become its own handbook and not just a copy of a Spalding Guide section. While not included on this website, the handbook continues to be produced today - now a very thick handbook! This is in contrast to the 1920 rules book was approximately 1/4 inch thick. Click on the thumbnail image below to see the historical highlights of change with to these officiating handbooks.
Booklets: Basketball Officiating
Nat'l Assn. Approved Officials Handbooks