Finding lost long relatives via Arsenal History Society

Over the last ten years or so we have managed to help a number of relatives of ex-Arsenal players get in touch with each other.

Unfortunately I don’t have the resources to link people together and preserve the anonymity of those who wish to stay anonymous, but there is still a way you can get in touch if you want to.

Send in a comment on the article about your ancestor and within it put in your email address inviting relatives to get in touch with you.  I can’t guarantee you won’t get any junk emails but reports I have had is that you’ll get few – if any.  And if you are worried about contacts from people you don’t want to know, go to Gmail and create a new address there.  It’s free and you can use it just for this.

If there is no article on the ancestor you were looking for information on, do drop me a line ( and I will see if we can put one together.

Here are the details of who we are…

The Arsenal History Society is part of the Arsenal Independent Supporters Association – a body which gives positive support to the club, and has regular meetings with directors and senior officials of the club to represent the views of its members to the club.  You can read more about AISA on its website.

Below you will find today’s feature, and the list of anniversaries for today.  But first…

We currently have two books available.

“Woolwich Arsenal, the club that changed football” is the definitive history of Arsenal from its inception, and “Making the Arsenal” is a novel which tells the story of Arsenal in 1910.

Both books are now available on Kindle and in print.    Please see here for more details.   

On this site we have hundreds of series of articles on Arsenal history and a full list of the various series of articles on Arsenal’s history can be found here.    Three particular highlights are…

Henry Norris at the Arsenal:  There is a full index to the series here.

Arsenal in the 1930s: The most comprehensive series on the decade ever

Arsenal in the 1970s: Every match and every intrigue reviewed in detail.

Today’s anniversaries…

19 July 1915:  The FA and Football League held their AGMs. The League voted in favour of paying footballers during wartime, the FA against it, resulting in chaos.  Eventually the League conceded. The FA then met the League and the Southern League and agreed there would be no FA Cup, but there could be regional leagues in the north west and midlands.  This left the south and the north east without any football.   Scotland had already voted to continue with professional football.

19 July 1919: Peace celebrations break out at the end of the 1st world war.

19 July 1954: Joe Haverty signed from St Patrick’s Athletic, and although only 18 immediately made his debut for Arsenal.  He stayed until 1961 when he moved to Blackburn.

19 July 1966: North Korea beat Italy 1-0 in the World Cup finals, and so knocked them out of the tournament, at a time when Italy were odds-on favourites.

19 July 1995: Alan Smith announced his retirement.  Between 1987 and 1995 he played 264 league games for Arsenal, scoring 86 goals.  He went on to have a career as a commentator and reporter.

19 July 1996: A 0-6 away win to St Albans City on this day, with a team including much of the first team regulars like Dixon, Merson, Stephen Hughes etc, did not prepare supporters for four subsequent defeats and a draw in the rest of the pre-season.  Fortunately a new manager was ready to step in.

19 July 2003: Arsenal drew with Barnet 0-0 after losing to Peterborough.  Yaya
Toure played as a trialist but Arsène Wenger saw him as “completely average” and
did not follow up the option of signing the player. 

19 July 2004: Manuel Almunia signed from Celta Vigo 

19 July 2007: Gençlerbirliği 0 Arsenal 3 (Van Persie 2, Walcott).  The seven match pre-season run saw the introduction of Bacary Sagna and Eduardo into the squad.

19 July 2008: Barnet 1 Arsenal 2 (Simpson, Barazite) The start of a 9 match preseason run in which Arsenal were unbeaten, including a 1-0 win over Real Madrid  

19 July 2014: Arsenal began their pre-season games with a 0-2 away victory over Borehamwood, Olson and Afobe getting the goals.  Arsenal’s team included many younger players hoping to make an impact including Coquelin and Bellerin.

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