Robert and James Smith, 1872 first international

Scottish Football Answers to Questions

Robert and James Smith, 1872 first international

Postby ScottishFA » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:42 pm

I'm trying to find out details of the lives of the Smith brothers, Robert and James, who both played in the first international on 30 November 1872.

Members (and founders) of Queen's Park, although by then living in London and playing for South Norwood, for whom they appeared in the FA Cup on occasion.

With a bit of digging I have managed to unearth their birth details - they came from Fordyce in Banffshire - but does anyone know what they did for a living, or what happened at the other end of their lives?

James was reported to be dead by the mid 1880s, while Robert emigrated to USA or Canada (accounts vary) and was dead by 1920. Smith is not the easiest surname to research, so any anecdotal evidence would be very useful.
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Postby BMCCOLL » Sun Nov 29, 2009 7:33 pm

I've always been under the impression that this game was actually a continuation of the 'unofficial' games begun in 1870 as the SFA wasn't actually founded until March the following year.
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Postby LEATHERSTOCKING » Tue Dec 01, 2009 9:12 am

Queen`s Park captain Robert Gardner picked the "Scotland" team for the November 1872 side eg. the Queen`s Park team plus Robert & James Smith then living in London and playing for the South Norwood club but still Queen`s Park members. Gardner again chose the side to visit London in March 1873 for the return game selecting again the Queen`s side but eventually only seven travelled South due to injury and illness and it is said the reason for the heavy defeat was due to the other four not having the co-ordination of the Queen`s players. This game was played on the Kennington Oval on 8th March; the Scottish Football Associatiopn wasn`t formed until five days later so the first game between the FA & the SFA was Scotland`s 2-1 win on West of Scotland`s Cricket Ground, Partick on 7th March 1874.
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