Thursday, 30 June 2016

Grasshoppers v Airdrie Football Club - Sat 20th November 1875

In the mid 1870s football reporting at a local level was very rare, local papers did not really report on away matches, and a lot of the football was simply a scoreline, so it is delightful to find the occasional match that was reported in full.
This match was Grasshoppers second match for which any evidence survives and of course the club they were playing had nothing to do with Airdieonians.

GRASSHOPPERS v AIRDRIE FOOTBALL CLUB

This match came off on the ground of the former at Bonnybridge on Saturday last, and resulted in a win to the Airdrie team by two goals to none. The superior weight of their opponents, and the manner in which they used this advantage, made up for the loss of one of their men, and rather astonished the home team, who - this being their first match with any regular club - were entirely unacustomed to such rough handling, and were often unexpectedly "floored" by their opponents when the ball was at another part of the field. As soon, however, as they saw the aim of their antagonists they began to watch better, and after the first quarter of an hour the game was very well contested, though rather in the favour of the Airdrie team throughout, both sides exerting themselves to their utmost. At about ten minutes to time the second goal was scored for Airdrie - the first having been taken within ten minutes of the kick-off. For Airdrie - H.Hendrie, J.Skelton, J.Laird and J.Mulvey; and for the Grasshoppers - H.Lapsley, J.Mitchell, J.Roscoe and J.Glaister played well throughout the whole game. As the Grasshoppers turned out in their new uniforms - red, white and black jerseys - which showed well against the blue jerseys of their opponents - white knickerbockers with green strip and red stockings - the field presented a very bright appearance, and the day being fine, the game was witnessed by a large number of spectators. The following are the teams :- Airdrie - Goal-keeper, H.Kenny; back F.Skelton; half-backs A.Diamont, J.Skelton; forwards C.Docherty, H.Hendrie (Captain), J.Mulvey, W.Skelton, J.Laird, J.Delaney. Grasshoppers - Goal-keeper, M.Dobson; backs J.Glaister, J.Roscoe; half-backs R.Dobbie, W.Crombie; forwards A.Lapsley (Captain), J.Clarke, J.Mitchell, T.Smith, H.McPhie, W.Forrester.

Pen Pic - William Folley - Falkirk FC 1907

I suppose when the Falkirk Herald decided their Prominent Football Players it must have all been relative, because some of the players have largely been forgotten to history. Or perhaps they were more celebrated in the district back then, no television etc.

William Folley was yet another product of the local junior system, after a couple of seasons with Falkirk, he moved on to East Fife, then Bathgate, before moving "down south" to play with Luton Town, where I lose touch with him...



Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Falkirk CC v Falkirk FC - 28th May 1887

Well, yes, there is a very good reason why Falkirk FC stuck to football.


Though, it must be said that Harry Smith, Falkirk CC's opening bat & leg spinner, was also an old Falkirk footballer..

St Andrews v Grasshoppers - Scottish Cup 1876

The first Scottish Cup match played by a team from Falkirk District, in fact from Stirlingshire, was played in Edinburgh of all places. I believe that back then the early rounds of the Scottish Cup were regionalised, so the fact that Grasshoppers were in the Edinburghshire group shows the lack of football in Central Scotland.

The match itself was probably played on the Meadows [or perhaps Bruntsfield Links], and was the first match of the season for the Grasshoppers. They lost. It was their only competetive game. The teams had a strange relationship with competitions back then.

From the Falkirk Herald Thursday 5th October 1876.

ST ANDREWS v GRASSHOPPERS

These two clubs opened their seasons on Saturday by engaging in an Association Cup tie. The Grasshoppers, who hail from Bonnybridge, took the defensive first, and the Edinburgh team kicked off with the wind favouring. The visitors, although looking heavier than their opponents, were well pressed, and the play was pretty often in their quarters. In the second three-quarters, when ends had been changed , the forwards, whose strength was somewhat increased by an influx of members from the defunct Heart of Mid-Lothian got well in, and T.Purdie kicked a goal. This, although the play still went on, practically decided the tie. Teams:- St Andrews - Messrs R.Winton, goal; G.Purdie and D.Grosset, backs; R.Purdie and R.Rolly, half-backs; D.Ross, D.Brunton, T.Purdie, J.Cochrane, G.Mitchell and J.Alexander, forwards. Grasshoppers - Messrs T.Ure, goal; A.Lapsley and J.King, backs; J.Paterson and W.Anderson, half-backs; T.Smith, H.Macfie, W.Crombie, W.Forester, J.Mitchell and J.Clarke, forwards.

Pen Pic - John Reid - East Stirlingshire FC - 1907

Like many of the other East Stirlingshire players I have reproduced from the Prominent Players series today's player John Reid seems to dissapear shortly after the Falkirk Herald lauded them. Since I am no expert on the careers of East Stirlinghsire players it would be wrong for me to comment on this. Anyway here is John Reid Captain of East Stirlingshire.



Tuesday, 28 June 2016

East Stirlingshire v Glasgow XI - 1887

In the 19th Century Charity matches played by combined teams were far more common than they are these days, especially at the beginning and end of the seasons. The clubs in Falkirk District would often combine to play one of the Glasgow clubs or one of the surrounding counties to add to the coffers of the Falkirk & District Charity Football Association.

These matches were often a bigger draw than anything but the Final of the local Charity Cup competitions because of the 'big names' on view. However 'foreign' combinations also visited the district for the benefit of Charity. East Stirlingshire Fc got in touch with Mr Mackay of the Scottish Umpire to put together a fitting team to raise money for the Falkirk Cottage Hospital. After a couple of call-offs finally the two teams met on Wednesday August 31st 1887.

From the Falkirk Herald 3rd September 1887

GLASGOW TEAM v EAST STIRLINGSHIRE

On Wednesday evening the match for the benefit of the proposed Cottage Hospital (postponed from last week) came off on the ground of the East Stirlingshire at Merchiston Park, Bainsford, when there was a large attendance of spectators, who witnessed a hard-contested game. The weather fortunately for a few hours before and during the match was dry , but the rain which had fallen in the fore part of the day had made the ground a trifle greasy. The Glasgow team arrived a man short - Kirkwood of the ground club filling the vacancy, and the Glasgow team was then made up as follows:- Goal, Chalmers (Rangers); backs, Muir (Rangers) and Buchanan (Cambuslang); half-backs, McIntyre (Rangers) and Cameron (Rangers); forwards, left-wing, Brand (Queen of the South Wanderers) and White (Albion Rovers); centre, Kirkwood (East Stirlingshire) and Robertson (Battlefield); right-wing, Suter (Partick Thistle) and Peacock (Rangers). East Stirlingshire were fully represented. "Tuck" McIntyre having lost the toss Glasgow kicked off, but Johnston returned, and after Chalmers had left his charge to return the ball, twice it was sent wide of the goal. The Glasgow left-wing had a run up the field, but the ball was returned, and Reid had a swift run, but sent wide. A chance took place which might have resulted in a goal, but Dunn left the shooting of the ball to Johnston and vice-versa. A corner was obtained off one of the Glasgow backs, and a shot was sent in to Chalmers, which he cleverly cleared. Again Chalmers had to save, and then Sharp was called on to save a drooping shot from the left at the other end. Then Chalmers had a lively time, and the left wing raised the siege, and a from a shot by Kirkwood a corner was conceded by Inch. Nothing resulted from it, and again at the other end Dunn was in front of goal, when the Cambuslang representative rushed in and kicked it out of the field, thus giving a corner. The goal was cleared, but still the East Stirlingshire kept the play mostly in Glasgow ground till the call of half-time, having several corners and several exciting scrimmages. The ball went every place but through the goal, once or twice striking the bar. During this time the Glasgow team were only twice at Sharp's charge, both visits being of brief duration.
Half-time was called without any scoring.
The second half was immediately started, and a run was made for the Glasgow goal, but the ball was returned and the ball was got near mif-field. They were then checked, and Dunn getting the ball sent a shot into goal, which was rushed through two mins from the start. The Glasgow men wrought hard after this, but could not break the home team's defence. About 15 minutes of the second half had gone when a second goal was scored by E.S. By this time darkness had set in, and the play could only be followed with difficulty. No more scoring took place, although once or twice the cry of "goal" arose when the ball was hovering near the Glasgow goal, which was found to be erroneous. The game thus ended East Stirlingshire 2 Glasgow 0.

Athletic Notes

The match in aid of the proposed Cottage Hospital Fund - notwithstanding many adverse circumstances - may be said to have been a great success. The weather on Wednesday last was not so propitious, as the original date fixed on, but I understand upwards of £17 were drawn at the gate. The Glasgow team, too, was not so strong as was affected, but a look over the names shows it to be a pretty good team, and the East Stirlingshire men are to be congratulated on their victory. The match all through was brimful of interest, as was evinced by the interest manifested by the spectators. The second half was not completed as darkness had set in, and the full hour-and-a-half could not be played. Cameron, of the Rangers, was not of much use in the second half, his leg haven given way; while Honeyman, of the home team, was for some time off the field from a kick which he received. I beg to congratulate Mr Reid on carrying out the project to a successful issue, and hope that since the representatives of other clubs left East Stirlingshire to play the game, they will follow suit by playing matches with the same object in view.

Pen Pic - William McLachlan - East Stirlingshire FC - 1907

Another East Stirlingshire player that I don't know much about over and above what is written below. Not only is it not my team, it is more than a Century ago. I can find no record of him at another Scottish League team, but then again I do not have the complete records.



Sunday, 26 June 2016

Pen Pics - Robert McTavish - Falkirk FC - 1907

Unlike his big brother 'Jock', Robert McTavish did not really get a chance to prove himself in what must have been one of the best Falkirk FC sides of all time. One of the main reasons for his not getting any chances was simply down to that fact that his 'natural' positions on the right wing were taken by the legendary Jock Simpson and his own brother.

This meant that most of his games for the first eleven ended up being at Centre-Forward or Outside-Left, but his performances at Outside-Right for Falkirk 'A' kept him in contention for a place come injury or suspension.



Robert McTavish

b 26th October 1888, Govan, Glasgow
d c1972

Debut – Wednesday April 24th 1907 v Falkirk District XI (H) Benefit Match
League Debut – Saturday November 23rd 1907 v Hamilton Academical (A) Scottish League Division 1

Positions – Outside-Left, Outside-Right, Centre-Forward

Club Honours – Dewar Shield W 1909/10, Stirlingshire Cup W 1909/10, RU 1908/09,
Stirlingshire Consolation Cup W 1907/08

Known Career – Avondale, Ibrox Roselea, Petershill, Rangers [1906/07], Falkirk [1906/07-1909/10], Tottenham Hotspur [1910/11], Brentford [1912/13], Third Lanark [1913/14-1915/16], York City [1914/15], Raith Rovers [1915/16]

Note

Brother of John McTavish - Falkirk FC [1905/06-1909/10 & 1917/18]

Friday, 24 June 2016

Robert Hamilton - President of Falkirk FC 1908

I know I normally post about football players, and to be fair it is because there is not very much of interest to say about football club board members or directors or whatever. And rightly so. But I found this bit from the FH in 1908, and the article says that the Falkirk Football Club President was a player with Zetland Swifts in his youth so that is good enough.



Thursday, 23 June 2016

East Stirlingshire v Stoke - 6th August 1887


From the Falkirk Herald Saturday 13th August 1887.

EAST STIRLINGSHIRE v STOKE

The East Stirlingshire opened their season at Merchiston Park, Bainsford, on Saturday by a match with Stoke-on-Trent, the holders of the Staffordshire Cup. The weather was most unfavourable , rain having fallen heavily for several hours prior to the game commencing, and continuing throughout the whole of the play. This had a very telling effect on the attendance of spectators, and the numbers present would not exceed 1000. The visitors won the toss, and elected to defend the west goal, and McLauchlan kicked off, and from a miss from Reid the visitors got the leather at once well into the home territory, but Wilson and Doyle at back played a fine defence, and the goal was well cleared, and the ball taken into mid-field, where play remained for a time.
Play had gone on for about twenty minutes , when Dunn, from a smart pass by McLauchlan, headed the leather between the uprights, and thus registered the first goal for East Stirlingshire. For about a quarter of an hour East Stirlingshire kept up a most determined attack on the Stoke goal, shot after shot being sent in in rapid succession, but they were as smartly saved by Rowley. A minute from the call of half-time the home team relaxed their pressure, and Bollom, getting away with the leather, ran it right up the field. He made a straight shot for goal, but the leather striking Sharp, the ball rebounded, and on Sharp running out to lift it he slipped, owing to the soft condition of the ground, and Bollom, who had followed it up, touched the leather, and it rolled through between the posts. Half-time was then called, leaving the score at one goal each.
In the second half a lot of hard work was put in by both teams, and, when the game had gone about half an hour, McLauchlan scored a second goal for East Stirlingshire. The visitors tried hard to equalise, but were unable to do so, and time was called, leaving the result - East Stirlingshire, two goals; Stoke, one.
Teams:- Stoke - Goal, Rowley: backs, H.Montford and T.Clave; half backs, E.Smith, G.Shott (Captain) and W.Holford; forwards, right wing, A.Edge and J.Sayer; centre, L.Bollom; left wing, T.Wainwright and J.Owen. East Stirlingshire - Goal, Sharp; backs, Wilson and Doyle; half backs, Inch, Kadie and Johnstone; forwards, right wing, Stewart and Reid; centre, McLauchlan; left wing, Dunn and Honeyman.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Pen Pic - James Macrae - East Stirlingshire FC - 1907

Here is another Prominent Player from Falkirk District in 1907, this time a 'shire player James Macrae, which means I really do not know that much about him. Read the bio I say.


I will go and look at his stats and add something here :)

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Pen Pic - James Reid - Falkirk FC - 1907

This post from the prominent footballers series is that of James 'Punkie' Reid. Another local lad who Falkirk pinched from East Stirlingshire twice. Although starting his career at Inside-Right, in his second spell at the club he played almost exclusively at Right-Half, to such success that in 1907 he played in the Scottish League International Trial, then in 1909 in the Scottish International Trial, sadly though not being given the honour of representing his country.


After his Falkirk career he moved on to Cowdenbeath, then served in the Great War with Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Pen Pic - John Simpson - Falkirk FC - 1907

This the legend that was Jock Simpson in 1907.


Nothing more need be said.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Pen Pic - John Morrison - Falkirk FC - 1907

John Morrison is the next in this series of prominent players from 1907, and I have to say he is one of my pet favourite players in the history of Falkirk FC. Although he would be special because [as far as I am aware] he is the only player to play for the club in every single position of the old 2-3-5 formation [okay he only played in goal once, in a friendly v Peebles Rovers]: but most importantly, by 1910 he went by the nickname "Slasher", there, that is enough.

He would have been a 'one club man' apart from the fact that his work took him to Paisley, and wartime restrictions on movement compelled him to play for St Mirren in 1913/14.


After his playing career he became the Secretary/Manager of East Stirlingshire, Third Lanark then St Mirren, retiring in Paisley during the second war.

Pen Pic - Thomas Baird - East Sirlingshire - 1907

Yet another in the series of Pen Pics of Prominent Falkirk and District Football Players. This one, Thomas Baird is a rarity, in that he is one of few footballers that played for all three Scottish League teams in the District: Falkirk, Stenhousemuir then East Stirlingshire. The only catch being that he played for Falkirk and Stenhousemuir before they had joined the League.


Although a local, I have never quite been able to pinpoint where he was from, and he dissappeared off the radar not long after this season.

Pen Pic - Clyde Skene - Falkirk FC - 1907

Since I recently came across a series on "Prominent Falkirk and District Football Players" published in 1907 I might as well continue to share them for the World's edification ;/

Today we have the legendary Clydesdale Duncan Skene [for that was his full name], from Tryst Road, Larbert.


The Skenes were a sporting family Clyde also playing in the local cricket leagues, whilst his brother Dr Leslie Skene was a senior goalkeeper for [among others] Glasgow University, Falkirk Amateurs, Stenhousemuir, Queen's Park, Fulham, Glentoran and Scotland.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Pen Pic - Robert Orrock - East Stirlingshire FC

I just found a picture of Robert Orrock at the start of his senior career, he joined East Stirlingshire at the beginning of the 1906/07 season, and would go on and on and on and on.


Soon after this Bobby Orrock joined Falkirk, got capped and played a lot of football before winding up his career back at East Stirlingshire. Last thing I know the Orrock family headed off down under, to enjoy a bit of sunshine.