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eldorado46

Hi everyone,

I'm writing here to see if there is anyone out there who can help me get any info' and/or photographs of my Great Grandfather's playing days with Wednesday or point me to where I could find out. His name was Thomas Fish and I believe he would have been aged in his early 20's.

I've discovered that he was at the club for two seasons 1900-1901 & 1901-1902 and made 8 first team appearances, one of them in an FA Cup tie against Sunderland.

I also found an old reserves programme (No. 37) on the internet where Wednesday are playing Hinckley (April 25th, 1902) at Owlerton on which his name is listed as playing at right half back.

The other interesting thing about this programme is that it lists a player called 'Morales' playing alongside Tommy at Centre Half Back. On the 1901 census which I tracked down, which has Tommy's family listed, there is also a Matthew Morales, age 22, profession - Professional Footballer!

Sadly, many, many years ago, my side of the family (the Greenwell's) slowly lost touch with my fathers, mothers side of the family which was magnified by eventually emigrating to live in Australia.

I remember being told a story that he played football for Wednesday a long time ago and that he had winners meddles or something of the sort from his playing days of which now I'm not so sure about as Wednesday started their great run just after he left... Which then leads to the other question, did he go to another club or did he finish playing?

Any information or photos would be so very greatly appreciated as I've been charged with putting the family tree together!

Kindest Regards

Ken Greenwell

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dunsbyowl1867

Hi Ken

A new book is published on Monday 15th August - 'Sheffield Wednesday - The Complete Record'.

This is Tom's record

Tom Fish

1st Game Everton 30/3/1901

Last Game Sunderland 25/11/1902

League Appearances : 7

FA Cup : 1 Appearances

Total 8 appearances

best wishes

Paul

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dunsbyowl1867

As to winners medals - doesn't seem likely. Though he may have been at the club in the 1899/1900 season when they won the 2nd division championship.

1900/1 1 appearance - Wednesday finished 8th

1901/2 6 appearances - Wednesday finished 9th

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dunsbyowl1867

The other player you refer to is Matt Moralee who made 7 appearances for Wednesday between 1902-3

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dunsbyowl1867

Keith Farnsworths earlier book "A complete Record" has him down as having made 7 league appearances and 1 FA Cup appearance.

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dunsbyowl1867

In Richard Starling's book "Romance of the Wednesday" In 1902/3 Tom and Morallee are listed as being part of the "rare talent" of the reserve team. The season 1902/3 Wednesday won 5 trophies one being the Midland League Championship (Reserve Team) so that may have been the winner's medal Tom picked up.

best wishes

Paul

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eldorado46

Hi Paul,

Thanks for all the information!

After more digging around, I'm thinking that the 'winners medal' that Tommy had was maybe from Wednesday Reserves 1-0 victory over Royston in the 1902 Sheffield & Hallamshire Senior Cup Final? They won it again the following year 5-0 over Roundel.

Over on one of the Everton websites they have a complete Wednesday matchday programme online from the day on which my Great Grandfather made his home debut (March 30, 1901) against Everton. His name isn't listed on the first team line up, which makes me think that maybe he was one of the substitutes or perhaps he played for the Wednesday Reserves before the main game? Did they have subs in those days?

The player Matt Moralee matches the name on the 1901 census, I re-checked and it's definitely him, it's just the way his name has been scrawled on the census form! They both lived in the same street 3 doors apart!

It was great to hear that Tommy was listed as a 'rare talent' in the reserve team along with Matt, but that just makes me wonder if he didn't make it at Wednesday, where on earth did he move to afterwards if he did stay in the game?

So many variables!

Anyway Paul, thanking you again so much for your help and if you ever come across anything bearing the Fish name, please let me know!

Regards

Ken

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clive.nicholson

From the information I have:

He joined Wednesday in 1899 as a centre half essentially as an understudy for Herrod Ruddlesdin. He arrived from minor football in Durham and it was not until the 30th of March in 1901 that he made his 1st team debut for Wednesday in a first division game in the league at home to Everton where the result was 3 goals to 1 in favour of the Wednesday – Harry Chapman 2 Spiksley 1. It was Tom Fish’s only 1st team game in that season.

When he played in his first game for the Wednesday reserves in September 1899 it was only the 2nd game played on Wednesday’s new home playing field in Owlerton now known as Hillsborough. The game was played in the Sheffield Association League in an encounter with Wombwell F.C.

It was, however, at 2nd team level that Tom Fish would make his greatest impact as a professional footballer for the Wednesday Football Club, winning a multitude of local honours as the Wednesday Reserves swept all before them in the years bridging the dawn of the 20th Century. In his 1st season in the reserves he was an ever present in the team that won the Sheffield Association League, dropping only three points in the campaign, and then went on to win a treble when then won the Wharncliffe Charity Cup League followed up with a victory over Worksop Town in the Final of the Sheffield Challenge Cup.

The Sheffield Alliance League Title was retained a year later. The Sheffield Challenge Cup was won again in 1902. and in the 1902-1903 season the Wednesday Reserves were entered in the Midland Counties League in which they won the Midland League Championship.

Unfortunately for Tom, his rival for the left half spot in the first team was one of Wednesday’s best players and it didn’t help his cause that Herrod Ruddlesdin was largely able to keep clear of any serious injury. More than this Ruddlesdin was a tremendously good footballer who won three full caps for the England International Team to confirm his pedigree. This meant that Tom Fish had only brief opportunities to further his cause in the cauldron of Football League.

After his debut game against Everton in the 1900-1901 season he did finally enjoy a spell of five consecutive games from December the 14th in 1901 to January the 11th in 1902. He played one other 1st Division match in the Football League prior to his five game run later in the season. Once again Ruddlesdin was indisposed and Fish deputised in the Wednesday’s 2nd league game of the season on the 14th of September away from home against Notts County on the Trent Bridge Cricket Ground. The game was a complete disaster as Notts won by 6 goals to 1. There was however a good reason for this in that Frank Stubbs the Wednesday goalkeeper for that game received a crack on the head midway through the 1st half and rumour has it that Stubbs scored several goals through his own net. He didn’t play again that season until the final game of the season.

Tom Fishes five first team games were : -

1. The 14th of December 1901 Sunderland @ home Result: - Wednesday 1 – 1 Sunderland Wednesday Scorer Harry Chapman DRAW

2. The 21st of December 1901 Small Heath – away Result: – Small Heath 1 – 1 Wednesday Wednesday Scorer Joe Pluck Davis DRAW

3. The 26th of December 1901 Man City home Result: – Wednesday 2 – 1 Manchester City Wednesday Scorers Wright & Fred Spiksley WIN

4. The 4th of January 1902 Grimsby Town away Result Grimsby 1 – 3 Wednesday Wednesday Scorer Joe Pluck Davis ‘Hat Trick’ WIN

5. The 11th of January 1902 Notts County home Result Wednesday 4 – 0 Notts Wednesday Scorers Davis, Moralee,Spiksley, Wright WIN

Hope this is OK – No Team Photograph of Thomas Fish in a first team line up. Eight appearances in Wednesday First Team – No goals Scored

All games played at Left Half Back. After the Notts County victory Ruddlesdin returned to the 1st XI & Thomas Fish didn’t play in the Wednesday 1st team again. Wednesday released him at the end of the 1903 season and the ‘Wednesday Boys’ states that he dropped into none league football. There is a photograph of Wednesday 1st and Reserves in 1903 all together in Romance of the Wednesday book, however Fish is not on this photograph.

I have no other information but he may have played professional football for another club in a lower league. The Options at that time were: -

THE FOOTBALL ALLIANCE LEAGUE – THE NORTHERN LEAGUE (May be your best bet as he came from Durham) – THE MIDLAND COUNTIES LEAGUE -

FAILING THIS He may have gone to play in the SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Clive

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clive.nicholson

With regards to the Everton matchcard you have seen:

If the statistics say that Fish played then he definately played. Matchcards were printed in advance of the game and would often have mistakes. Usually you see them crossed out and written in in pencil over the top.

Statistics are made up from the newspaper reports at the time and because these are written after the evet and are 99% reliable. Obviously Fish covered for someone in this match.

Substitutes were not around in those days, they came in in 1965.

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clive.nicholson

Also. If you can get to the Sheffield library you will be able to get copies of every reserve fixture and all league tables etc. At that time football reporting was very comprehensive. You will need a about 3 hours to get everything. They have microfilm copying which is fairly priced. So if you want lots of detail about his games and seasons then you can get it.

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bill maycock

tommy fish was my grandfather, greenwells were my cousins.

==========================================================

Edit; email address removed, anyone wishing to contact 'Bill Maycock'

please do so via the forum PM facility, or contact a forum admin for email address.

Thank you.

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SteveHB

tommy fish was my grandfather@the greenwells were my cousins

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RichardB

Thomas Fish, 1874-1941 (from Ancestry, I'm no longer a member, but it does say Thomas Fish - Sheffield Wednesday Football Career).

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dunsbyowl1867

Here's the 1901 Census with Fish and Moralee on in Ibbotson Road

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dunsbyowl1867

Given he was still in Hillsborough 10 years later - obviously his football career was over and the riches to be made in the steel insustry had tempted him ;-)

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clive_w_nicholson

Reserve match programme with Fish on it.

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