Football activity was significantly linked to winter festivals in Scotland. One such notable event was the festival of Yule, originally an ancient pagan celebration that marked the winter solstice. With the establishment of Christianity across northern Europe, this pagan festival was largely subsumed by the Christmas season. For many communities, football formed part of the… Continue reading The Yuletide Games of Old
Glasgow Before The Explosion: the role of migration and immigration in the development of football cultures in the city prior to 1873.
Abstract The purpose of this paper is to highlight ongoing research suggesting that numerous football cultures existed in Glasgow and the surrounding area prior to what the Scottish Football Museum has termed as the ‘football explosion’ – referring to the rapid rise of Association football in the city in the aftermath of the first official… Continue reading Glasgow Before The Explosion: the role of migration and immigration in the development of football cultures in the city prior to 1873.
Two hundred and forty five years on from that first historic account at Carstairs, a happy scene played out on another Lanarkshire green, less than nine miles distant. The date was 26th August 1873 and a party of the Turfholm Industrial Female School, to the number of 125, enjoyed their annual summer excursion with a… Continue reading Standing free; the ancient story of women’s football in Scotland; (Part Two)
On a warm and sunny day in August 2018 the little green at Carstairs village in South Lanarkshire became the centre of attention for representatives of Scotland’s sports media. They had been invited to attend an event which marked a significant milestone in the history of women’s football in Scotland. The 21st August 2018 marked… Continue reading Standing free; the ancient story of women’s football in Scotland (Part One)
A memorable visit to London a few years ago included a trip to Twickenham to visit the World Rugby Museum. The stadium was preparing for the Rugby World Cup and it was fascinating to be able to get a behind the scenes tour ahead of such a high-profile event. The visit to the museum was… Continue reading The story of 1868 (Part Two); the rugby game in Scotland
The year 1868 was an important one for the two codes of football in Scotland. For the embryonic association game, this year saw a challenge match take place in Glasgow between Queen’s Park and Thistle FC, which unquestionably provided a major boost to the morale of the former club. It also witnessed the emergence of… Continue reading The story of 1868 (Part One); the association game in Scotland
For a few years now I have been drawn into the field of etymology to try to understand the origin of place names which may, or may not, suggest a connection between physical locations and ball games like football. It has to be said that for centuries football and numerous other sports were widely played… Continue reading The Ba’ Green – Scotland’s ancient playing field
The discovery of a football medallion from 1851 has to go down as one of the greatest ‘finds’ of my museum career. There is perhaps an irony, however, that when the item was discovered it had been sitting all along in a museum collection rather than being secretly squirrelled away for decades in someone’s attic… Continue reading The oldest football trophy? The story of the 1851 football medallion
This phrase was adopted by the Scottish Football Museum back in 2001 to advertise the opening of our new premises at Hampden Park. As a headline it was intended to firmly grab the attention of the reader. Its deliberate use, within the context of opening the new exhibition space, reflected on the fact that to… Continue reading The love of your life has a past you don’t know about
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