John Marshall
John Marshall
A. Player

probably born in Scotland

John Marshall was born on Sunday, 31st March, 1850, in Stirling.

The forward probably joined Thistle in 1884 or 1885, having most recently been with Partick.

Aged 34, he made his first known appearance on Saturday, 10th January, 1885, in a 2-1 friendly win at home to Port Glasgow Athletic.

John scored his first known goal for Thistle on Saturday, 14th February, 1885, in a 4-1 friendly win away to Partick.

He scored the last of his 20 known goals on Monday, 9th May, 1887, in a 5-3 friendly win at home to Church.

He played his last known game for the club on Saturday, 28th May, 1887, in a 5-2 defeat away to Morton in the Greenock Charity Cup, having appeared for the Thistle on at least 65 occasions.

His club-list included Partick and Partick Thistle.

John died on Friday, 3rd February, 1888, in Alexandria, West Dunbartonshire, aged 37.

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Bio Extra

The first-born son of Robert Marshall and Jane Marshall (née Gardner).

John has the distinction of having the earliest-known birth date of any Partick Thistle player. He had played with our burgh rivals, Partick, but jumped ship along with his namesake, Bob Marshall, late in 1884 / early in 1885. He was almost 35 at that stage, but it seems there was plenty of life in him yet judging by the number of appearances he racked up over the course of 2½ seasons. He literally played in every position across the front five line and knew his way to goal, finding the net regularly one game in three. He broke his scoring duck on his fourth appearance - a 4-1 win over Partick. Ooft. That's bound to have hurt. John scored twice in the 7-0 win over Fleetwood in November 1886 as the Jags made their way brilliantly to the last 16 of the FA Cup. Ill health forced him to retire at the end of that season 1886-87, and he bade his farewell at Cappielow, picking up a silver medal in the Greenock Charity cup final.

For many years, John had worked as a bookkeeper with Messrs. Denny & Co. in Dumbarton, but even that was proving to be too much for him as his condition worsened. The club did their best to help, and a sum of around of £25 was donated to the family in October 1887, the proceeds from a match against Airdrieonians, played for his benefit. Shockingly, John succumbed to the illness, a chest disorder, on 3rd February, 1888, at his home, 26 Middleton Street in Alexandria. He was only 37 years old. The very next day, all flags at Inchview flew at half-mast in the Vale of Leven game, and both 1st and 2nd elevens wore black armbands as a sign of respect the following Saturday. President John Boag (who had played with John at Partick) and club secretary Andrew Smith attended the funeral, and the club sent a beautiful wreath.

John's birth year certainly gets us thinking about the age of our favourite institution. For context, Abraham Lincoln's third son was also born in 1850… William Wallace Lincoln!

(WS/JK)



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