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100 Years in the First Division

In 1919 Arsenal were promoted to the first division.  At the time it was a totally uncontroversial affair but much later stories began to circulate that this was not the case.

And indeed that was right.   There was no controversy at all at the time, only a load of fantasy stories later.

The whole story is told in our series Henry Norris at the Arsenal but here you can see the prime articles from that mega series that take you through the full story of Arsenal’s promotion in 1919.

There is also a shorter version which has appeared on Untold Arsenal here.

The preliminaries

The voting and the comments before and after the election

The Second Libel

The Third Allegation

The Fourth Allegation

Did Henry Norris really beg Leslie Knighton to stay and offer him the hugest bonus ever?  And if so, why were there no new players?

The Fifth Story:

The Sixth Allegation

The Seventh Allegation

The Eighth Level – wild fantasies and desperate stories.

The final round of misinformation and unsupported statements

Knighton’s notoriously inaccurate autobiography reports his departure from Arsenal with a whole raft of statements which a review of the historical facts shows to be untrue, ranging from his “building a new team” in 1919, to the notion that he would have got Buchan at a much lower cost.  He complains also about not getting a benefit match and claims Sir Henry Norris left him £100 in his will, stating that sacking Knighton was his biggest mistake.  There is no evidence for any of this and with so many other statements in this section of his autobiography being plainly wrong, we may wonder about these.