Only Once a Blue, Humphrey Jones – Tony Onslow

Only Once a Blue, Humphrey Jones – Tony Onslow

Once a major force in Scottish football, the Vale of Leven club are basedin the small Dunbartonshire town of Alexandria. Originally formed in 1872, there were the first team to take away the SFA Cup from the famous Queens Park club of Glasgow when they won the trophy threetimes on the run between 1877-78 -79. In 1890, now founder members of the Scottish League, the Scots made their first visit to Liverpool where a certain Humphrey Jones made his only appearance for Everton. He had been born, 17th of December 1863, at Summerhill Terrace in the North Wales town of Bangor and was the 5th child born to Humphrey, a successfulBuilder, and his Wife Jane.Privately educated, he first attended the local Friars School before moving to Christ College in Brecon from where he won a place at Cambridge University.Humphrey played association football for Peterhouse College but owing to his style of play, failed to gain a Blue. When his studies permitted, hewould be seen in the half back line, for Bangor City on their homeground, (here featured) at Maes-y-Dref. The club were members of the North Welsh Football Association and regularly won their local knockoutcompetition. The dominant style of play shown by Jones soon caught the eye of the Welsh selectors and, on the 23rd of March 1885, he won his first...
Read More
Richard Williams, an Everton Goalkeeper- By Tony Onslow

Richard Williams, an Everton Goalkeeper- By Tony Onslow

Predating the renowned Port Sunlight Model Village by some 25 years, Bromborough Pool was built to house their workforce by the executive who conducted the affairs of the Price Candle factory. It was also the birthplace of former Everton goalkeeper, Richard Williams. Born 17th of April 1866, he was the 3rd Child of Richard, a General Labourer, and his Wife, Margaret. After being educated at the village school, the 1881 census finds young Richard has now started employment in the Soap Factory where he met Sarah Jane Brocklebankwho he married in 1889. He had started his football career playing a full back for Bromborough Pool but eventually established himself in the position of Goalkeeper.The club were members of both the Wirral and the Liverpool & District FA. In 1889 they became founder members of the West Lancashire League along with such teams as Kirkdale, Stanley and Tranmere Rovers. At the time of the 1891 census the couple are living, in the Model Village, at 11 South View.(here featured) On the 29th of April that year Richard Williams is seen at Anfield playing for a Liverpool District X1 against a team of players who were based in the City.Next September – following thesudden death of John Angus – he signed professional forms with Everton for a wage of 45/- per week. Standing at...
Read More
Albert Chadwick, the Brother of Edgar – Tony Onslow

Albert Chadwick, the Brother of Edgar – Tony Onslow

When Thomas Chadwick married Susanna Pilkington, in 1865, at St Peters church in Blackburn both their families had a firm foundation in the Grocery Trade which enabled them to “set up” their own local outlet at 66 Darwen Street. It was here that their first child Albert Llewelyn was born on the 1st of August 1867. The family then moved to a terraced house on New Park Street - while the business was expanded elsewhere - and it was here that a second child, Edgar Wallace, was born on the 14th of June 1869. He was destined to become an early legend at Everton Football Club. The 1881 census finds the family business now operating at 115 King William Street were Albert is already learning to bake bread and serve behind the Grocery Counter. Three years later his name begins to appear on the team sheet of the 1883 FA Cup winners Blackburn Olympic on their home at Hole-in-the Wall. He...
Read More
Isaac Roberts – The Short Life of an Everton Blue – Tony Onslow

Isaac Roberts – The Short Life of an Everton Blue – Tony Onslow

Standing at the rear of the tall buildings that today run along the thoroughfare of Dale Street are the remains of the uniquely named Ryleys Gardens. However, this once squalid and narrow court was inhabited by many destitute immigrants who had arrived in Victorian Liverpool hoping for a new start in life. Ryleys Gardens was also the birthplace of a man who played one competitive game for Everton. Isaac Roberts was born, August 1868, the 4th child of Isaac, a Mariner, and his Wife Leah. The couple had married at Holy Trinity church   having moved to Liverpool from Mostyn in Flintshire where they both had been born. According to the 1881 census the family have now relocated to Lavrock Bank in Dingle where the 13-year-old Isaac is working as a Shop Boy/Messenger. He began playing football for Aigburth Vale on Fulwood Park before signing for Stanley, around 1887, on their home at Walton Stiles. The new signing quickly found a regular place...
Read More