This week we have another look back at Tottenham programmes over the years. In a previous article (1) we looked at a variety of programmes from different periods. This time around I thought I'd concentrate on some of the older ones. Simply as they are so individual. Tottenham’s first programme appeared at a game played on the old Northumberland Park ground on 28th October 1893 and is featured in the earlier article (1) The first programmes for any teams first appeared around the late 1880’s and were just a single sheet comprising a lineup. Aston Villa are generally thought to be one of the first clubs to enlarge this to include other news. Although it would be a long time until they become the 100 page booklets that are used today.
This top image is the traditional pre-season trial game between the first team and reserves
this time from 1933. The players (here the whites V the Stripes) are seen sending cricket players from the field. Whilst in the background you can see the cockerel on the roof.
This programme from the 1921 FA Cup Final has pride of place in this collection. Not only because of the result when Tottenham won the trophy.
This is in fact a special silk edition. The four leaf souvenir programme is printed in blue on cream silk. It is in a binder bound with blue cord. This edition was presented to VIP's attending the match, including the King and the future King, the then Prince of Wales.
In case you want to pick up one, ten years ago at auction this sold for sold for £2,702.
This programme isn't in very good condition. Mind you it does date from the opening day of the 1900/01 season. At that time programmes were not seen as the major industry that it is today. Many were not expected to survive for much longer than the game itself.
The game in the Southern League was lost. Millwall would finish fourth that season and we came 5th. We were level on points but they had a better goal difference by 1.
You can just make out the players were numbered on the programme even if they did not actually wear numbers on their shirts at that time.
At the bottom of the sheet is a warning against pirate programmes. Saville & Co. were big supporters of the club. Not only did they advertise in the programme, they also appeared in the yearly handbook. As well as pitch side advertising. They can be seen in an earlier article (3).
Prior to World War 2 each Tottenham programme carried a cartoon on their cover. Photographs were rarely used in those days. The action photos from that era are of poor quality. As we mentioned previously (2) they were also a expensive and time consuming process.
Many of the sketches in the programmes were the work of one
Jos (Josiah) Walker who was born in Edmonton in 1887.
I cant guarantee that these are all his work but as you can see he and hid colleagues left us a bountiful collection and a delightful view of Tottenham in those days.
Walker also worked for various magazines and created the images for the first Sexton Blake stories. As well as cartoon strips featuring real movie stars such as James Cagney. He also worked for the London Evening News. He died in 1942.
This next image is from March 5th 1910. This was our first season in the First Division. Tottenham hung near the bottom of the table all season and only escaped on the last day beating Chelsea and sending them down.
Here the character 'Dinky Doo' is saying " I say Cocky we must stop in 1st. Division Avenue at all costs. I don't like the looks of Relegation Street, besides there 'aint nothing wonderful in 'ot water cos we have had plenty of that where we are now, 'aint we ?"
To which Cocky relies "Dont mention it."
Cocky was a regular in this cartoons, a cockerel sometimes referred to as the Tottenham Bantam Weight.
Any Bristol Rovers fans out there will maybe know that and this programme is thought to be the first time their team was referred to as the pirates in print. A nickname the club carried for many years.
This is the 1921 season. The Bristol side, then in the lower divisions came to White Hart Lane in the first round of the FA Cup. We won by 6-2.
This game was discussed previously in the recent 'Tottenham and the Roaring 20's' series.
I included this one as it illustrates that the cartoons were able to roam across any subject matter and thus had the freedom that the photographer can only dream of.
We move forward here to September 1935 and the 3-0 win over Barnsley in Division 2.
You can see here that the programme was still a single sheet of paper folded into four pages. It would remain this way until 1961.
The back page is the fixture list and league tables for the first and reserve teams. Much of the inner pages would be taken up with a chart showing the sides lining up in the traditional 2-3-5 formation.
This issue shows manager Jack Tresadern. A former West Ham player who played in their losing 1923 Cup Final side. He was never happy at Spurs and stayed for less than three years.
The two images above are both taken from games when Derby County were the visitors to Tottenham. These are good examples of how the forthcoming games were portrayed. On the left its November 1933. The Derby Ram is seen charging the Tottenham defences. The caption says that Derby's lively attack should be well in evidence today, and the question is whether Tottenham's stonewall defence will withstand ?
Well they did not, as the visitors won 2-1. Derby finished 4th and we were 3th that season. They lively attack scored 68 goals that year (compared to our 79) Whilst our stonewall defence let in 56 in 42 games. A figure only bettered by two teams.
The following season and Derby came to the Lane in the February. Once again the Derby 'battering ram' attacks and this time the Tottenham Cockerel is up and ready for the fight. This isn't Cocky but a cock ready for battle and another figure who appeared a number of times over the years. This time it was a 2-2 draw. Derby finished 6th. Whilst we after our good showing the previous season slid all the to the bottom of the table and into Division Two.
This last image comes from January 1936 and shows that as well as all aspects of football the club artist could still relate to the wider world. Here we have the FA Cup game with Huddersfield. A game where the lower division Tottenham won 1-0. The picture is of King Edward VIII and it simply says long may he reign.
t- Keith 16024542
f- peter shearman (old non de plume reserved for THFC matters
Notes - 1 - Hotspur Towers 21.
2 - Hotspur Towers 43
3 - Hotspur Towers - Walter Tull.
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