Only Once a Blue (8) Walter Smalley – Tony Onslow

Everton had just excepted the invitation to become founder members of the Football League when Tommy Costley declared himself “unavailable” for the home game on the 2th of April. His place was taken by the elder brother of the club goalkeeper, Walter Smalley.   Born 1864 at Over Darwen in Lancashire, he was the eldest child of Thomas, a Cotton Mill Manager, and Jane. The 1881 census finds the family, which now consists of 4 children, have moved to a larger home at St Matthews Terrace in Preston and Walter has found employment as a Clerk. He has also become a member of North End Football Club.  On the 9th April 1882, Walter is in the side when the they faced their powerful neighbours, Blackburn Rovers. He got on the score sheet but Preston North End are crushed by 13 goals to 2. Major William Sudal then took command of the club and began importing players from the Scotland whom, it was alleged, were being paid for their services. They began the 1883-84 FA Cup...
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William Wildman – Tony Onslow

An Everton Full Back William Wildman was invited to join Everton, in 1903, having been spotted playing at full back with local amateur team, Queens Road Mission. No fee was involved but the Goodison Park club made a donation - to the mission, of £6,7s & 6d. Their new recruit had been born, 5th of March 1880, and was the 7th child of Allison, a Shipwright, and his Wife Elizabeth. The family then lived in Exley Street but, at the time of 1901census, they are living in Richmond Grove where William has found employment as a Commercial Clerk. Kept out of the senior side by the consistent play of Jack Crelley and the Balmer Brothers, he eventually made his Football League debut, 28th of January 1905 in a 1-0 win over Middlesbrough at Goodison Park. Wildman was called up on one more time, a 2-1 home defeat by Bury before, after being placed on the transfer list in...
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The Three Young Blues & The Story of John Robson Whittle – Tony Onslow

Like many of the young teenagers of Victorian Liverpool, William Gibson Walter Richards and Thomas Whittle would have been drawn towards the new game, association football, the was beginning to sweep the land and would have spent their early teens watching such teams as Everton on Stanley Park. They also would have observed that this particular club had, by 1882, caused the largest number spectators to frame their unguarded playing area. Next year, when they moved to an enclosure, William Gibson appeared in their line-up. Born1862, he is recorded on the 1871 census living, in Everton, at 34 Hodder Street with his Liverpool born parents William, a Boilermaker, and Anne. The family later moved to 53 Melbourne Street and William was working as a Commercial Clerk when he made his debut for Everton, December 1883, in the local knockout against Liverpool Ramblers. He scored one of the goals in a 4-1 win. Gibson then helped Everton to reach the final of...
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Only Once a Blue (7) Alfred Vaughan – Tony Onslow

Alfred Vaughan was about 8 weeks short of his 27th birthday when he made his one and only Football League appearance for Everton. He had been born, of Welsh parentage, on the 4th of April 1871 in the North Wales Coastal town of Rhyl. His Father Edward, worked as a Joiner, and his Mothers name was Margaret. The family first lived at Windsor Street before moving to Queen Street where Margaret, assisted by her Daughter, ran a Confectionary business while Alfred joined his Father in the Carpentry trade. He began playing amateur football locally until, in 1898, Rhyl Athletic amalgamated with Rhyl United and joined a Combination League that consisted almost entirely of teams from North Wales and Merseyside. The club was known simply as Rhyl and Vaughan was appointed captain. It was the first time a Rhyl football team had left the North Wales area and the local newspaper detailed a journalist – who wrote under the “non-de-plume of “Phillip,”...
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