1869 was the year of Carlton's First Premiership.
This is disputed. Both Carlton and Melbourne had won one game each and a third was to be the decider, however, it was a drawn match.
Melbourne captain Harrison then claimed that after Melbourne, the Carlton club was the best in the colony. Carlton captain Jack Conway disputed Harrison's claim and said that infact Carlton had kicked more goals than Melbourne and should be the champion team.
See below

Carlton Captain. J. Conway.
President G. Coppin.
Secretary C. Hillsden.
Home ground Royal Park.
Carlton played 7 games. Won 5, Lost 1, Drawn 1.
10 goals kicked for the season, 2 kicked against.

Rules amended which gave the win to the highest scorer in 100 minutes of play

First complete Carlton team of the 1860's which played the opening match of the year against Geelong at Royal Park, Queen's Birthday, May 22 1869 -

Jack Conway (Captain) , Frank Hillsden , Charlie Hillsden , Guy , Duncan, Waugh , Kennedy , O'Brien , J. Williams , W. Williams , Theophilis S. Marshall (later secretary of the V.F.A.) , Bannister , Newing , Southy , Richardson , Barfoot , J. Sharpe ,McFarland , William Phillips and H Robertson.

1869 Carlton Fixture
Scheduled matches as published in The Leader newspaper May 22, 1869.
May 24 Geelong at Carlton

June 05 Albert Park at Carlton
June 12 Melbourne at Melbourne
June 26 Albert Park at Albert Park

July 10 South Yarra at Carlton
July 17 Melbourne at Carlton

August 07 Albert Park at Carlton
August 21 South Yarra at South Yarra
August 28 Melbourne at Melbourne

September 18 Albert Park at Albert Park

Second Twenty/Reserves Fixture
May 29 South Yarra at Carlton

June 05 Albert Park at Albert Park
June 12 Hobsons Bay Railway at Carlton

July 10 South Yarra at South Yarra

August 07 Albert Park at Albert Park
August 21 South Yarra at Carlton
August 28 Hobsons Bay Railway at Carlton

September 04 South Yarra at South Yarra
September 25 Geelong at Geelong


Carlton Imperial, Carlton United. (Origins of Australian Football Vol. 1)

April 15 Thursday
The Carlton Football Club held their annual general meeting at Polmer's Carlton Club Hotel, corner of Grattan and Cardigan streets Carlton, on Thursday, the 15th. inst;
Mr. R. Robinson/R. Robertson in the chair.
There was a very good muster, over fifty members present. 32 new members joined the club.
The report and balance sheet showed the club to be in a very flourishing state, having the balance of £3 5s 1d. ($6.51)
They did not sustain a defeat during the past season.
The following gentlemen were elected office bearers for the ensuing season;
President, Mr. George Coppin.
Vice presidents, Mr. John Walls, Mr. George Owen.
Hon-sec and treasurer, Mr. Charles Hillsden.
Committee, Messrs; Barrass, O'Brien, Duncan, Barfoot, Bowen, R. Robinson/R. Robertson?, and Power.

Writing 25 years later in 1893 George F. Bowen aka "Olympus," recalls that Robert McFarland was a shoe-in to continue on as the Hon Sec/Treasurer. Just before the night's proceedings got underway Charlie Hillsden and his brother Frank Hillsden proposed and seconded 25 additional new members. As they had paid their subscription dues they were entitled to vote. When the votes were cast for the Hon Sec./Treasurer position Charlie Hillsden just won and the new members votes were crucial in defeating McFarland.
(Melbourne Punch May 25 p10)

April 17
Carlton played a scratch match at Royal Park at 2.30pm between teams chosen by Messrs. Duncan and O'Brien.
A well contested game was played which was won by the Duncan led team, 2-0.
Goals; Duncan, C. Hillsden

April 24
Carlton played a scratch match at Royal Park at 2.30pm.
About 50 players attended.
Teams were selected by C. Hillsden and O'Brien.

Emerald Hill becomes South Melbourne, then Albert Park

April 30 Friday
A very heated special general meeting of the South Melbourne club was held in the National School, Clarendon Street Emerald Hill.
Some members wanted to rescind the motion passed at the previous meeting to rename the club the South Melbourne Club. After a lot of trouble, delay and some very tiresome speeches, the resolution was rescinded.
Some members suggested Albert Park, others wanted it known as the Emerald Hill and South Melbourne Club.
Finally it was decided to be known as the Albert-park Club.

May 01
Carlton played a scratch match at Royal Park at 2.30pm.
Teams were selected by Bannister and McFarlane.
Fifty members took part and after an hours' play a goal was scored by Bannister's team.

May 06 Thursday
Carlton Football Club held a general meeting at Polmer's Carlton Club Hotel at 8pm.
The reason for the meeting was to discuss and consider the election of a match committee.
As few members attended, it was decided to adjourn and hold the meeting at a later date.

May 08
Carlton played a scratch match at Royal Park.
Teams were selected by Duncan and Bannister.
Duncan's side scored one goal.

May 08


To the Editor of the Australasian (p12)

Sir, - Today the Melbourne Football Club hold their annual meeting and play their first game, and as Melbourne is the senior club, I suppose this may be considered the formal opening of the season. Players have been anxiously looking forward to this event during the past few weeks, and the Carlton and South Melbourne clubs have been unable to wait until a reasonable time for opening; however, they have only commenced practice, and will probably not play any matches until the season is well opened.
What sort of season will the coming one be? The last was, perhaps, the most brilliant there has ever been here. The soldiers' matches, the splendid games between Melbourne and Carlton, the struggle in the Royal-park between Carlton and Geelong, and at Geelong between the local and the Melbourne clubs, will not be easily forgotton by the players, not will the play be easily surpassed by the youngsters "coming out" in season 1869.
The present season opens with two rather inauspicious events - the loss of part of the garrison with their gallant captain Noyes, and the opening of the South Melbourne Club with a bit of a quarrel. As an old stager who has seen the working of many a club, perhaps the South Melbourne or the Emerald-hill gentlemen will allow me to give them a bit of advice. Do not elect unwieldy committees, and all sorts of officers, and elaborate machinery to manage the club; but get a good secretary and a match committee of, say, three, to pick the teams, &c, and then pay more attention to play and less to meetings and business. Above all things make up the last quarrel about the name of the club, which looks very trumpery to outsiders, and have two or three very good matches, which will put you in a good temper with one another, and so prevent a really good plucky club from bringing discredit upon themselves, and football generally.
The best matches of the season, as of last, will probably be between the Melbourne and Carlton clubs, and I hope, and expect, that the good feeling between these clubs will continue. Last season they fought like tigers, and parted with three hearty cheers; may they have many more such jolly matches. The Geelongese, too, will be hard to thrash, but there is little doubt but that the Melbourne and Carlton will do all they can towards that end.
The South Yarra men made a bad show last season, but with better internal management the club should be a good one, and I don't think they will be easy to beat this season as they were last. There were also one or two outside clubs started last season, some of which may measure their strength against the "dabs" this year, but with what success none can tell.
Alas! I am out of all the fun. Since last season I have taken to myself a partner, and Julia (that's her) says "she won't mend my shirts if I play that horrid game any more," but she allows me to look on, and sometimes she takes me herself, so perhaps I'll write to you about some of the good matches during the season, if she'll let me. - Yours, &c.,
Melbourne, April, 5 MARK

May 08


To the Editor of the Australasian

Sir, In your issue last week I observe a letter from "An Old Etonian," in which the writer advocates running with the ball, and cites as an argument the graceful way in which some of the Melbourne and Geelong men handle it. Will you permit me, in the first place, to acknowledge the high compliment paid to the clubs here by the "Old Etonian," when he says, "That he played under Eton rules for eleven years, and after witnessing one season's play in this colony, he came to the conclusion that our system was superior to the Etonians?" I little thought that we were equal to the successors of those who figure in Tom Brown's School Days. He goes on to say that "He immediately sent home a copy of the "Melbourne Football Club rules," saying that the play out here was far more exciting because they were "allowed to pick up the ball and dodge with it." At present I have a copy of the "Victorian rules of football, agreed to at a meeting of delegates on the 8th May, 1866," and after a most diligent search, I cannot find any reference to "being allowed to pick up the ball and dodge with it." On the contrary, rule No.8 says, "The ball may be taken in hand at any time, but not carried further than is necessary for a kick, and no player shall run with the ball unless he strikes it against the ground in every five or six yards."
Although I must confess that this rule is rather ambiguous, still the intended meaning is obvious from the first clause, and I maintain that a proper attention to it would ensure much better and pleasanter games than we have yet had. We should again have the manly fair shoulder throw of the olden time, which has been supplanted during the past two seasons by contemptible systems of scruffing, holding, and shirt-tearing. All these systems are in vogue solely because running with the ball is carried on, and it is impossible to get an "artful dodger" fairly with your shoulder, and some means must be adopted to stop him. I need not enumerate the endless squabbles that arise from holding, &c, ; they lower the game in the public estimation immensely, and lead to constant bursts of ill-feeling amongst the players. It is impossible to dodge along with the ball on a field of twenty-aside without causing a "barney," it is a different matter entirely on a field of six or eight a-side, as I believe matches in England at present are played. I do not state that the number is so small as six or eight - I have heard so; if I am wrong, I stand corrected.
I have only played football for five years, and I am sorry that my opinions should clash with a player's of eleven years' standing, yet, although I cannot but admit the temperate tone of his letter, still I must beg to differ from him in my convictions.
For a long time I have been advocating the total prohibition of running with the ball, and I am glad to observe that at length a great many are beginning to see the correctness of my views.
If the second clause of rule No.8 were altered so as to read "and no running with the ball shall be allowed," I am confident that it would be a great advantage to spectators, players, and all concerned. - Yours, &c.
May, 4
(Australasian May 08 p12)

May 13 Thursday
A meeting of the secretaries of the Carlton, Albert Park, Hobson's Bay Railway, Melbourne, and South Yarra clubs met at Garton's Hotel to draw up a programme of matches for the coming season.

May 15
Carlton played a practice match at Royal Park at 2.30pm.
Teams selected by the President and the Vice president.
President's team captained by Frank Hillsden, and the Vice president's team captain was J. Conway.
The vice president's team won after two hour's hard fought play, scoring one goal kicked by Curtis McFarland.

May 24. Monday, Queen's Birthday.
The Geelong team were met at Spencer Street station and taken to the Carlton Club Hotel, where a champagne luncheon was provided by the Carlton Football Club.
Carlton President George Coppin presided, and toasts were drunk to the Queen, and to the Geelong and Carlton clubs.
The players then proceeded to Royal Park for the game at 2pm.
Crowd; about 3,000. The first time an attendance figure is mentioned for a Carlton match.
This was a 16 per side match. J. Conway won the toss
In one of the most exciting games seen for some time, Carlton's Newing scored a goal after 30 minutes.
Geelong equalised, and then an exciting struggle continued until the Carlton Captain J. Conway, "by a splendid kick out of the ruck" scored the winning goal.
This was Geelong's first defeat in four seasons.
Umpire; T. Power
Carlton team; (20 named)
J. Conway (Capt), Bannister, Barfoot, Duncan, Guy, F. Hillsden, C. Hillsden, Kennedy, Marshall, Curtis McFarland, Newing, O'Brien, Phillips, Richardson, Robertson, J. Sharpe, Southey, Waugh, J. Williams, W. Williams.
Carlton defeated Geelong 2-1
Goals; W. 'Bill' Newing and J. Conway.
Best; Conway, Newing, Duncan, Guy, Frank Hillsden, Charlie Hillsden, Marshall, Southey.

May 29
North of the Yarra to play South of the Yarra on the Melbourne ground.
Carlton and Melbourne each to provide 10 players.
South Yarra and Albert Park players to make up the Southern team.
Continuous rain on Saturday afternoon saw the cancellation of this, and most other matches.
Carlton's Northern representatives; (10 named plus emerg)
J. Conway, J. Duncan, Guy, C. Hillsden, F. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, T. Marshall, O'Brien, J. Williams, W. Williams.
Emergencies; Bannister, Southey.

Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty played South Yarra Reserves at Royal Park.
Match to commence at 2.30pm.
Carlton team; (25 named)
Azzopardi, Brisbane, Egan, Fullarton, Fletcher, D. Fisher, Hoy, Henderson, Huddlestone, J. G. Harris, F. Harris, B. James, Ick, D. Jones, W. Marshall, R. McFarland, Curtis McFarland, McCarthy, Newing, Phillips, T. Power (Capt.), R. Robertson, Reilly, Steve (Stevenson?), Wills.
No result details, probably cancelled due to rain.

June 05
Carlton played Albert Park at Royal Park.
Albert park were captained by A. Brown later to be ordained the Reverend Alexander Brown. He says he was one of the founders of the game and was the first captain to place the men into positions on the ground. (See Pre VFL Rules of Football and scroll down to 1916 Originator of Football?)
J. Conway lost the toss and the Blues kicked to the southern end goal. There was no wind advantage as the wind was blowing at a right angle to the ground.
After an hour's play J. Conway with a splendid kick scored the Blues first goal.
In the second half both sides played some magnificent football and just before 5pm W. Gorman scored the second and match ending goal.
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg)
Bannister, C. Barrass, J. Clarke, J. Conway (Capt), J. Duncan, Guy, F. Hillsden, C. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, J. Kennedy, T. Marshall, Tom McCarthy, R. McFarland, S. Muir, O'Brien, Richardson, Southey, Waugh, J. Williams, W. Williams.
Emergency; Curtis McFarland
Carlton won, 2-0 (Half time 1-0)
Goals; J. Conway, W. Gorman
Best/Mentioned; (10) Guy, J. Conway, Clarke, F. Hillsden, O'Brien, Duncan, Marshall, J. Williams, W. Williams, Gorman.

Carlton Second Twenty played Albert Park Second Twenty in Albert Park.
The team met at the Melbourne Town Hall at 2pm.
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg)
Azzopardi, Brisbane, Fletcher, Fullarton, F. Goodall, J. Harris, T. W. Harris, Henderson, Hoy, Ick, Marshall, Merton, McCarthy, J. Newing, W. 'Bill' Newing, Parish, T. Power (Capt), Robertson, J. J. Sharpe, Wills.
(The Leader named J. G. Harris and F. Harris, Jones, W. Marshall and McCarthy)
Emergencies; Hiddlestone, Stevenson, Eager. The Australasian had Barry as an emergency instead of Eager.
Carlton won, 1-0
Goal; D. Davis

June 05


Today, the first baseball match to be played in the colony is to be played on the Lonsdale Cricket Ground by the Baseball Club. (Argus p5)
An early map has the Lonsdale Ground in Yarra Park south of the rail line, adjacent to Punt Road and just north of the river.
The Argus (June 12 p12), mentions members of the Baseball Club to meet on "the old Lonsdale cricket ground, near the Botanical-gardens-bridge."
There was a foot bridge across the Yarra at the end of Anderson Street. This would be replaced in 1899 by the Anderson Street, later called the Morrell Bridge.
In the 1890's most of the inner suburban VFA (later VFL) football clubs would field a baseball team. These baseball matches were played prior to the football match.
This arrangement would last until the introduction of the VFL U/19 competition which became the curtain raiser in 1947. Later on during the 1950's the VFL Reserves were played prior to the main match, with the U/19s playing on the ground of the opposition.
There is a photo in Blueseum from 1905 of the Carlton baseball team playing on Princes Park

June 12.
Carlton played Melbourne at the Melbourne football ground.
Both sides are of equal strength, play to commence at 2.30pm.
Melbourne were the favourites.
A crowd of at least 2,000 in the Richmond Park to witness this clash of the city's two top teams.
J. Conway won the toss and kicked to the eastern goal aided by the breeze.
After a tough struggle of 30 minutes J. Conway scored the first goal.
W. Gorman scored the second goal.
"The match altogether lasted about one hour and ten minutes, and during the whole time of the play it was one of the toughest, hardest fought struggles that had ever taken place in the colony. When it was over Harrison, the captain of the Melbourne team, expressed his opinion that they had been well and throughly beaten, and he dubbed the Carlton Club as champion club of the colony." (The Leader)
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg)
Bannister, C. Barrass, J. Conway (Capt), Henry Conway, Clarke, Duncan, W. Gorman, Guy, F. Hillsden, C. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, S. Marshall, Tom McCarthy, R. McFarland, Muir, O'Brien, Richardson, Southey, W. Williams, J. Williams.
Emergencies; J. Kennedy, C. McFarland.
Carlton won; 2-0. (Half time 1-0)
Goals; Jack Conway , W. 'Bill' Gorman
Players mentioned; (10) J. Conway, Guy, F. Hillsden, W. Gorman, Henry Conway, Duncan, Marshall, O'Brien, J. Williams, W. Wiliams.

Carlton Second Twenty played the Hobson's Bay Railway Company in Royal Park.
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg)
Azzopardi, Brisbane, Fletcher, Fullarton, Goodall, F. Harris, Henderson, Hoy, Ick, D. Jones, W. Marshall, M. McCarthy, J. Newing, W. 'Bill' Newing, Parish, Phillips, T. Power (Capt), R. Robertson, J. Sharpe, Wills.
Emergencies; Glennon, Donnolly, A. Jones.
Carlton lost; 0-1

June 19.
No scheduled Carlton match.
This week Carlton captain Jack Conway played for Albert Park against Melbourne.

Employees of Messrs.Walker and May played employees of Messrs. J & S. Danks.
Danks won 1 - 0 the goal was kicked by Guy. Harry Guy was a life-long worker for Danks.

Carlton Second Twenty/Reserves played Collingwood at Royal Park.
Carlton team; (32 named)
Azzopardi, Bannister, Barry, Blackham, Brisbane, Donnelly, Egan, D. Fisher, Fletcher, Fullarton, Glennon, F. W. Harris, Hay, Henderson, Hiddlestone, Ick, B. James, A. Jones, D. Jones, Leyden, McCarthy, Curtis McFarland, Marshall, J. Newing, W. 'Bill' Newing, Parish, Phillips, Robertson, V. Robertson, Sharpe, Southy, Wills.
No result details.

June 26.
Carlton played Albert Park on the Albert Park ground.
The team met at the Town Hall, Swanston Street at 2 pm.
The ground is at the end of Clarendon Street, Emerald Hill.
The Australasian's reporter commented on the large amount of women who attended. "The weather was bitterly cold, with a cutting north wind."
The Argus preview of the match said;
"As the Carlton players are at present the champion footballers in the colony, and the Albert-park are bringing a strong team into the field, a splendid match may be anticipated."
It was a well contested game in front of a large attendance.
The Age;
"These clubs played a well contested game on Saturday afternoon, in the Royal Park, when the Carlton Club was again victorious, obtaining one goal, which was kicked by Mr. Duncan.
The terms of the match were that goals obtained by either side during the afternoon should determine winners."
Jack Conway won the toss and the Blues kicked to the western goal at about 3pm. with the advantage of the breeze.
Duncan's goal, "was a fluke sort of kick to send the ball through the Albert Park goal. Had the goal-keeper but kept his place it was palpable to all that he could easily have stopped the ball." Ends were changed after the goal was scored.
Play continued till 5pm with no aditional score being added. The teams had agreed to one or more goals would decide the game, and Carlton were declared the victors.
"The 'spills' and torn shirts were numerous, and I regret to say, that in some cases they were not taken in good part, as some of the Carlton men played very unfairly."
"If the Albert Park wish to score a victory against Carlton or Melbourne they must bring their best team to the field, and to do that, some of the members must throw off their present apathy."
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg)
J. Conway (Capt), Bannister, Barrass, J. Clarke, Henry Conway, Duncan Guy, Goodall, W. Gorman, F. Hillsden, C. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, Marshall, Tom McCarthy, R. McFarland, O'Brien, Richardson, Southey, J. Williams, W. Williams.
Emergencies; T/S. Muir, J. Kennedy.
Carlton won. 1-0
Goal; Duncan.
Best; J. Conway, O'Brien, Duncan, F. Hillsden, Guy, Marshall, J. Williams, W. Williams

July 03
No scheduled Carlton match.
Practice match was held in Royal Park at 2.30pm.

July 10.
Carlton were to play South Yarra in Royal Park.
This match was postponed to July 31.

Carlton Second Twenty played South Yarra Second Twenty at South Yarra.

July 17.
Carlton played Melbourne at Royal Park.
A well attended match.
Melbourne won the match in a controversy. After an hour's play Melbourne were awarded a mark after the ball clearly came off the hands of Carlton's Conway.
The mark was allowed and from it Melbourne scored the only goal, much to the protests of the Carltonites.
"This was considered to be against the rules of the game, under which it was contended no free kick could be claimed if the ball had been hit while in the air before it was caught." (The Leader)
"The players could not much enjoy the beautiful ground of the Carlton Club in the Royal-park, through the spectators (who were undoubtedly one-sided in opinion) persisting in encroaching on the playing ground." (Australasian 24 July)
Play continued till 5.15pm when Melbourne were declared the victors.
Umpire; Smith
Carlton team; (21 named plus emerg.)
J.Conway (capt), Bannister, Charles Barrass , Brisbane, Guy, Frank Goodall, F.Hillsden, C.Hillsden, Marshall, Henry Conway, J. Williams, W. Williams, Southy, Robert McFarland, G. Kennedy, Duncan, Richardson, O'Brien, Jim A. Clark, Tom McCarthy, W. 'Bill' Gorman.
Emergencies; T. Muir and J.Kennedy.
Carlton lost; 0-1
Players mentioned; Conway, Guy,

Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty played the Hobson Bay Railway Company on the Melbourne ground.
Only ten Carlton players turned up, and after a long delay five substitutes were found and Carlton played with fifteen men.
T. Power captained the Second Twenty.
From the start it was clear that the Carlton team was up against it, for the Railway men were too greater match for them. Play continued till 5pm.
Carlton team; (26 named)
Azzopardi, J. M. Barry, Donnelly, Fletcher, Fullerton, Glennon, Hay, F. Harris, J. G. Harris, Henderson, Hiddlestone, Hoy, Ick, A. Jones, D. Jones, Marshall, C. McFarland, J. Newing, Parish, Patterson, Power, T. Power (Capt.), Robertson, Sharpe, Thorpe, F. Wills
Carlton lost. 0-1 (Half time 0-1)

July 21
A special general meeting of the Carlton Football Club held at Polmer's Carlton Club Hotel.
Charles Hillsden, Hon Sec.

July 24
Carlton played a practice match in Royal Park.
No details

July 31
Carlton were to play South Yarra in Royal Park.
The South Yarraites pulled out of this match and the Blues played a practice match in Royal Park instead.
Carlton team; (20 named plus emerg.)
Bannister, Barrass, Clarke, J. Conway (Capt.), Duncan, Guy, Glennon, W. Gorman, C. Hillsden, F. Hillsden, Kennedy, T. Marshall, M. McCarthy, Tom McCarthy, W. Newing, O'Brien, Richardson, Southy, J. Williams, W. Williams,
Emergency; Brisbane

Carlton Reserves played the South Yarra Reserves at South Yarra at 2.30pm.
Carlton team; (23 named)
Azzopardi, Donnelly, D. Fisher, Fletcher, Fullarton, F. W. Harris, J. G. Harris, Henderson, Hiddlestone/Haddlestone, Hay/Hoy, Ick, D. Jones, A. Jones, Marshall, Curtis McFarland, S. Muir, Maloney, J. Newing, Parish, Paterson, T. Power (Capt.), Robertson, Sharp.
Carlton lost; 0 - 3
Best; Power, Atkinson, Pattison, Hillsden.


This is a reproduction of an article in the Australasian titled,

Football Chatter - By Fair Play

"It is pleasant to me, a footballer from the home country, to stray on a Saturday afternoon in the various paddocks and parks with which Melbourne is surrounded, and see the numerous parties engaged in the fine old game and the vigorous manner in which it is played.
Little children kicking a small indiarubber ball; then a step higher in the scale, two lots of school boys engaged in a fierce contest; and still onward, till at length you reach two of the first-rate clubs playing a match. Here the game is played with all the necessary skill, and I must say with all its roughness - even at times with an undue amount.
The game is played in this colony in a style not in any degree inferior to that of English players, and with by no means any deficiency of pluck - in fact, running into danger is usually rather courted than otherwise. One great advantage all the players in and around Melbourne have is their possessing one code of rules, and these are not at all numerous and very easy of explanation. In England almost each school has a different set of rules, and this causes great perplexity; while, on the contrary, here there is never any doubt about right or wrong. A great feature, and to me a great improvement, is the introduction of running with the ball under certain restrictions. This adds greatly to the interest of the game, and much amusement is caused and skill required by one player trying to dodge another, or sometimes by several. It seems to me as if running with the ball was a necessary adjunct to doing the drop kick, as this kind of kick necessitates the ball being picked off the ground. Running with the ball is, however, very often carried to excess, and is the cause of much bad feeling; the ball being frequently held, shirts seem necessarily to get torn, and a person in an excited state cannot always take this kindly. As far as the season has gone, I am glad to perceive that shirt-tearing has been indulged in to a very limited extent, and hope it will continue to get less. The Melbourne, which is considered to be the premier football club here, has decidedly set its face against the practice, thereby setting a very good example.
Still, however, notwithstanding my admiration of running with the ball, I would not like to see the fair stand up charge die out. It is not very often to witnessed now, but when I do see a good charge it does my heart good. Players are, no doubt, more eager to dodge by with the ball than to stand the chance of rushing and thus passing their adversary. There are one or two whose play, whenever I have the chance, I always watch intently, not that it is so very good yet, but, whenever they have the opportunity, dodging is scorned, and they go in for a charge. Mean-spirited play I detest, and all players should carefully avoid doing anything which could be thus construed, and also all spiteful play. I was very sorry in witnessing a match lately between two of the leading clubs to notice that the ball was several times purposely kicked by one side behind its own goal in order to obtain the kick off in front. This was much commented on at the time, and spectators should show their disapproval of such mean play in as marked a manner as possible.
Talking of spectators, why will they encroach on the ground marked off for the play? they can always see just as well by standing a few feet further back, and would thus give the players a fair field. Of course when two clubs meet they like to have a goodly array of visitors, despite all requests to the contrary, will break into the ground, they not only spoil the game, but show very bad taste. I do not like to see a charge made for witnessing a football match, as it would be better for the game altogether to be kept apart for monetary affairs, but I would sooner pay my my sixpence to see a fine game played on an enclosed ground, like the Melbourne Cricket ground, than have the game interrupted in the manner it always is.
The fair sex apparently take great interest in the game. The number of ladies that attend a match on a fine afternoon surprises me; whether it is that they are friends of the players (if they are so lucky fellows), or that they admire the spirit of the game, thinking that those who play will not turn out drawing room dandies, I cannot say, but rather fancy the latter is nearer the mark. It is a hopeful sign for the future of football that so many fresh clubs have been started this season, and that they are all going a-head in a flourishing manner. The number of matches to be played increases every Saturday. It is a game which should be encouraged by every sensible person, as, despite its roughness - and what game is not rough? - it will in every respect make the Australian youths who play it of a more manly and self-reliant spirit, and will go a great way to counteract the evils to which they are exposed. And as to its roughness, a boy or a young man who is afraid of a bruise or a tumble, will never be in a position to face the ills and troubles to which most are exposed in the great game of life."
(Australasian July 31 p12)

August 07
Carlton to play Albert Park in Royal Park.
Saturday's Argus (p5) said the match "has been unavoidably postponed."

Carlton Second Twenty/Reserves played Albert park Second Twenty at Albert Park.
Carlton team; (21 named)
Azzopardi, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Harris, Henderson, Hoy, Hiddlestone, D. Jones, Johnstone, Maloney, Marshall, S. Muir, Macnamara, Patterson, Parish, T. Power (Capt.), Reilly, Roberston , J. Sharpe, Todd.
Carlton won; 1 - 0
Goal; Dobson

August 14


"Longstop" writing a letter to the Australasian (p13) about cricket grounds says of the football crowds;
"It is so now, that I notice that at football matches there is always a goodly show of on-lookers, the fair sex, too, being largely represented."
The Australian game was attracting the women to it 150 years ago, just as it does today.

August 14
No scheduled Carlton match.
This day a player (not named) from the Carlton Football Club and some players from the South Yarra club played for University in a game against Melbourne.

Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty played Collingwood at Royal Park.
Carlton team; (24 named)
Brisbane, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Gillman, F. Harris, J. G. Harris, Henderson, Hoy, Ick, Jones, James, Johnstone, M. McCarthy, W. Marshall, Muir, Maloney, Newing, T. Power (Capt.), Paterson, Robertson, Reilly, J. Sharpe, Todd.
Match drawn 1-1
Goal; D. Jones.

August 21.
Carlton played South Yarra at Royal Park.
A farcical situation arose;
"The ranger of the park appeared on the scene before any goal had been kicked, and informed the unsuspecting players, who thought they were on a public recreation ground, that some man paid £300 a year for the grass in the park, and that they were spoiling his grass by running over the land. A good deal of angry talk ensued, the players saying the park was recreation ground, and the ranger stoutly asserting that it was let to a man for grazing purposes.
The players gave way at last, and the match became a draw." (The Leader)
Carlton team; (20 named + emerg.)
Bannister, Barrass, Clarke, J. Conway (Capt), Donovan, Duncan, Gorman, Guy, F. Hillsden, C. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, T. Marshall, Tom McCarthy, M. McCarthy, W. 'Bill' Newing, O'Brien, Richardson, Southey, J. Williams, W. Williams.
Emergencies; Glennon, Brisbane.
Match drawn. 0-0

Carlton Second Twenty played South Yarra Second Twenty at South Yarra the match was moved from Royal Park.
Play lasted a little over an hour and resulted in a Carlton victory.
Carlton team; (23 named)
Azzopardi, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Gillman, F. Harris, Hay, Henderson, B. James, D. Jones, Johnstone, Maloney, Marshall, Curtis McFarland, S. Muir, Newing, Paterson, T. Power (Capt), Reilly, Paterson, Robertson, J. Sharpe, Todd.
Carlton won 2-0
Goals; Johnstone and D. Jones.

August 28.
Carlton played Melbourne on the Melbourne ground.
This game was to decide which was the champion club of the colony.
Both teams had won a game against each other this season, although Melbourne's win was from a highly controversial mark which resulted in the winning goal. (See July 17.)
A large crowd attended.
Stirring and energetic play from evenly matched sides lasted for almost three hours. The ball went from end to end and up to a dozen players surrounded it preventing any score.
Barrass played a physical game, which was not appreciated by the "real admirers of the game".
Carlton team; (20 named)
J. Conway (Capt), Greig, Duncan, O'Brien, F. Hillsden, Marshall, Tom McCarthy, Gorman, Clarke, C. Hillsden, McCarthy, Johnston, Barrass, Bannister, W. Williams, J. Williams, Donovan, Dobson, Kennedy, Power.
Emergencies; Glennon, Newing.
Match drawn; 0-0

A dispute arose between Carlton Captain Jack Conway and Melbourne Captain H.C.A. Harrison, (the 'father' of the game).
After the third game, Harrison proposed three cheers for the Carlton team, declared that after Melbourne, the Carlton club was the best in the colony.
Harrison wrote to the "Australasian" newspaper about which team was stronger Carlton or Melbourne.
Conway asserts that because the Blues had outscored Melbourne 2 goals to 1 over the 3 games that Carlton had the right to claim to be the better of the two teams. (Read Conway's letter below)
Reports of the day say Carlton was the season's champion team.
Harrison,(and the Melbourne Football Club) thought he/they owned the game, disagreed.
Buggy and Bell in their book The Carlton Story (1958) concede the 1869 season to Melbourne, but most other publications do not.

Carlton Second Twenty scheduled to play Hobson's Bay Railway Club at Carlton. (See September 04)
No details

September 04


To the editor of The Leader,
Sir, - I have been requested by the members of the Carlton Football Club to contradict a statement made by Mr. Harrison, the Melbourne captain, at the termination of the recent match between Melbourne and Carlton in reference to the unsettled question as to which club shall be awarded the palm for superiority in the football field. At the termination of the match Mr. Harrison took occasion to state that the Carlton Club was, after the Melbourne, the best club in the colony. This statement naturally gave rise to a deal of uneasiness and dissatisfaction in the minds of the Carlton players, who justly think themselves, by their previous performances when pitted with Melbourne and other clubs, if not superior, quite equal to their metropolitan rivals. It may be here not altogether uninteresting to lay before the out-door public the results of the three matches played between Carlton and Melbourne this season, so that they may determine the club to whom is due the pride of place.
The first match took place in the Richmond Paddock, it will be remembered resulted in a most decisive victory for Carlton, who secured the only two goals kicked during that afternoon.
The second match in the Royal Park was declared in favor of Melbourne, who obtained one goal. By the way, it may be here remarked that the decision which resulted in this goal being kicked gave the greatest dissatisfaction to the Carlton team, several of their opponents concurring with them in their view of the decision.
The third and last match, perhaps the most determined contest of the three, resulted in a draw. It will be thus be seen in the three matches Carlton have won one match, in which they obtained two goals, while Melbourne also have won one match, in which only one goal was secured.
Notwithstanding the goal which still remains in favor of Carlton, Mr. Harrison persists in assigning to his club the premiership, thereby upsetting all performances, and tending to cause, by his one sided policy, the players in future matches to regard each other in anything but a friendly mannner, which may eventually result in the rapid decline of the manly game in public estimation. I am, however, happy to state that all the Melbourne players do not coincide with their captain in his view of the matter.
Had the M.F.C. secured a goal against us on Saturday I am certain the Carltonites would have cordially hailed them as the best club. For two matches, in each of which a goal is obtained, may be regarded as a superior performance as to one match in which two goals are secured.
In conclusion, I beg to state on behalf of the Carlton Club, that they are both willing and ready to meet Melbourne in another trial of strength this season, when and where they please. Apologising for trespassing on your valuable space, and trusting you may find a corner for the above,
- I remain, &c, &c,
Capt. of the Carlton Football Club.

September 04.
Carlton First Twenty did not play.

Carlton Second Twenty played the Hobson's Bay Railway Club at the Melbourne ground.
Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty team; (24 named)
Azzopardi, Brisbane, Bannister, Cameron, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Glennon, Gillman, Harris, Henderson, Johnstone, Jones, B. James, Marshall, Muir, M. McCarthy, W. 'Bill' Newing, J. Newing, Power, Paterson, Robertson, J. Sharpe, Todd.
Match drawn; 1-1

September 11
Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty played Collingwood in Royal Park.
Carlton lost; 0-1

September 18.
Carlton were scheduled to play Albert Park.
This game was cancelled as Albert Park did not have enough players.
The Leader newspaper says the match was postponed because of "the decay of the Albert Park Club."
The Blues instead, played a practice match at Royal Park to prepare themselves for the Geelong match at Geelong next week.
The practice match was between teams selected by J. Conway and J. Duncan.

Carlton Reserves/Second Twenty played East Brunswick Royal Park.
Carlton team; (21 named)
Brisbane, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Glennon, Gillman, Harris, Henderson, B. James, Johnson, D. Jones, Marshall, Muir, McCarthy, Newing, Paterson, Power (Capt), Robertson, Sharp, Stevenson, Todd.
Carlton won 3-0
Goals; W. 'Bill' Newing, R. Adamson, Johnson.

September 25
Carlton played Geelong at Geelong.
The team caught the 11.30 train and arrived at Geelong at 1.30pm, where they were met by the Geelong president. The team had a champagne lunch at the Argyle Hotel.(Slator's Hotel) As the hotel was adjacent to the Argyle Ground it is most certain that the game was played on that football ground.
A much anticipated game and a large crowd attended.
At 2.55pm both teams were facing each other on the ground.
Geelong won the toss and kicked with the wind.
The Blues had a decisive victory, although The Pivots were without several good players.
George Kennedy scored the first goal out of a scrimmage after 20 minutes. The teams then changed ends. At 3.45pm George Kennedy who had been playing well scored another goal from a magnificent drop kick. Half time was then called. After the break Geelong then made an all out effort to redeem the situation. They managed to keep the ball in their forward line for quite some time, however O'Brien, Guy, Marshall, Johnstone, Southey, Frank Hillsden and Barrass worked hard to deny them.
At 4.50pm; "J. Clarke, whose play had been universally admired, secured a mark about 55 yards from the Geelong goal, though at a very acute angle. he succeeded at making a wonderful drop kick, and the ringing cheers of the Carlton men announced that the match was lost and won. Three hearty cheers were then given for Carlton by the Geelong men, and the honour was returned." (Weekly Times October 02)
The Carlton team returned to town much pleased with the hospitality shown to them by the good people of the the "Pivot".
Umpire; John George
Carlton team; (20 named)
Barfoot, J. Conway (Capt), J. Clarke, Dobson, Duncan, Glennon, Gorman, Guy, C. Hillsden, F. Hillsden, Johnstone, G. Kennedy, T. Marshall, M. McCarthy, Tom McCarthy, O'Brien, T. Power, Robertson, Southey, W. Williams.
The Australasian had named Azzopardi in the 20 instead of Clarke. (J. Clarke did play)
Friday's Herald had Sharpe, Jones, Azzopardi and Harris included in a 24 man squad.
Umpires; Lennon, Anstead, Jones.
Carlton won; 3-0 (Half time 2-0)
Goals; G. Kennedy 2, J. Clarke.
Best, (10) John Conway, O'Brien, F. Hillsden, G. Kennedy, J. Clarke, H. Guy, Marshall, Southey, Johnstone, Barrass.

October 02
Carlton were to play Melbourne.
This match was to decide which club would be the champion team of 1869.
The greatest number of goals kicked by one of the clubs would determine the result.
However, due to cricket commitments and scheduling this match did not take place

October 02
Carlton Second Twenty played East Brunswick at Brunswick.
Players met at the Brunswick cab stand at 2.15pm
Carlton team; (23 named)
R. Adamson, Azzopardi, Bannister, Brisbane, Dobson, Fletcher, Fullarton, Gillman, Glennon, F. Harris, Henderson, Hoy, Johnson, M. M. McCarthy, W. Marshall, S. Muir, J. Newing, W. 'Bill' Newing, Paterson, T. Power (Capt), Robertson, J. Sharpe, Todd.

6 Behinds Equals a Goal?

"Fair Play" of The Australasian October 16, complained of the number of drawn games, especially now that the side kicking the greatest number of goals won the match.
To reduce the number of draws he suggested that;
"When the ball is kicked 6 times behind it's adversary's goal, the side so kicking should score a goal and the game be recommenced as if a goal were kicked."
Behinds were later noted, but not used for scoring for many years, until the formation of the Victorian Football League (V.F.L.) in 1897.

1869. Premiers. Carlton, 2. Geelong, 3. University

The Carlton Story. Hugh Buggy and Harry Bell. Pages 17, 18,19,20,21,22,23,259.
Mullins Footballers Australian Almanac of 1951 Page 66.
The Argus 1869 editions.
The Leader 1869 editions.
The Age, 1869 editions.
The Australasian, 1869 editions.
The Record (Emerald Hill) 1869 editions.
The Geelong Advertiser, 1869 editions.
The Advocate, 1869 editions.
The Weekly Times, 1869 editions.

Pre VFL Players | Pre VFL Captains | Pre VFL Vice Captains | Formation of the Club | The Guernsey | Pre VFL Venues
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