John Miller , Dumbarton

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ramsfan7
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John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by ramsfan7 » Mon May 28, 2012 8:39 pm

Hi
Can anyone assist in clearing up a mystery from south of the border regarding a John Miller of Dumbarton.

The wikipedia (not always the best reference , but better than nothing) entry for a John Miller says

John Miller (1870 in Dumbarton – 1933 in Glasgow) was a footballer in Liverpool F.C.'s first season. Miller was a forward, and scored 24 goals in 25 games in the Lancashire League in 1892-93, which proved to be his only season at Anfield. He went on to play in the Football League for Sheffield Wednesday, where he scored seven times in thirteen appearances before returning to Scotland to join Airdrieonians.
The entry on the Liverpool database http://www.lfchistory.net/Players/Player/Profile/766 also confirms this.

We at Derby County also have a John Miller (also born in Dumbarton) that played for Clyde before joining Derby and left us for Bolton in 1897. This is backed up by the ‘Football League Players Record 1888 to 1939’. This book only has the the christian name as a J for Liverpool , but John for Derby , listing Miller in twice

The question is ..is this the same player ..is there a transfer trail between Airdrie and Clyde or are they two different players with the same name (or perhaps a James and John , or both John but not related) , coming from the same place around the same time ?

The historians at Liverpool who started the trail of this player claim to have a newspaper cutting suggesting that he was sold by Derby to Liverpool , but this is not yet confirmed. They also suspect that the published date of birth is out by a few years.

Any help appreciated
thanks

andy

ScottishFA
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Re: John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by ScottishFA » Mon May 28, 2012 10:14 pm

Yes, seems to be the same guy. From a quick trawl in the newspaper archives:

Sheffield Independent, 4 Sept 1892: "the famous John Miller, last season with Liverpool"

Derby Mercury, 11 September 1895: transfers approved by Football League include John Miller, Sheffield Wednesday to Derby County.

Derby Mercury, 29 Dec 1897, match report Derby v Bolton: "John Miller, the old County player, was centre for the Boltonians".

I'll have a further dig tomorrow, but hope that helps in the meantime.

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Re: John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by ScottishFA » Tue May 29, 2012 9:20 am

The only other thing I have found is a report in the Scotsman of 23 August 1937, which covers a reunion that weekend of the Dumbarton sides which won the Scottish League in 1891 and 92. John Miller attended the reunion, so if he was still alive then, the presumed date of death in 1933 must be wrong.

According to John Litster's CD, there were two John Millers who both signed for Airdrieonians and Clyde in the summer of 1894, but there is nothing to link them with the player you are after.

Depending on how much time and effort you want to put into this, one way to get his date of birth would be to consult the SFA player registration books, held at the Scottish Football Museum, which would probably give an address. You then consult the census return for that address in 1891 and that will give his age. With luck he will be living with his parents, so you could then track down a John Miller born in the appropriate year to parents of those names.

jimmygrumble
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Re: John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by jimmygrumble » Tue May 29, 2012 1:38 pm

To muddy the waters, I refer to "The Wednesday Boys" by Jason Dickinson and John Brodie who list John Miller as joining Wednesday from Liverpool in the summer of 1893 and transferring to Airdrie in 1894 for £25. They conclude that "the John Miller who appeared for Wednesday is now believed not to be the player who later played for Derby County and Bolton Wanderers."

According to my own records, I have listed two separate players.
John Miller(1): Dumbarton, Liverpool, Wednesday, Airdrie. I have him listed as joining Airdrie in Jul 1894 and moving on to Bathgate in Oct 1894, but I have unfortunately not noted the source of the those two dates.
John Miller (2); Clyde, Derby Jun 1895, Bolton Nov 1897. We know that he scored 12 goals in 17 league games for Clyde in 1894-95, so I shall eandeavour to check at what stage his name began to appear in the Clyde team. Unfortunately, I have no idea where he was before Clyde.
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jimmygrumble
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Re: John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by jimmygrumble » Tue May 29, 2012 1:59 pm

The Clyde line-up for the game against Leith on 25.08.1894 includes a Miller at centre-forward, the earliest evidence I can find, which would suggest that the Airdie Miller and the Clyde Miller are not the same player
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kjell
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Re: John Miller , Dumbarton

Post by kjell » Wed May 30, 2012 8:25 am

Hello,

John Miller is a mystery man. I have spend some time trying to track him for my Liverpool records. The question is if there were two John Miller`s at Wednesday in 1893. I know the Dumbarton, Liverpool and Wednesday Miller got injured in his first match for Wednesday in September 1893 and he was out for a long time. At some time the Directors at Wednesday allowed Miller to go home to Dumbarton to get well again.

Then we have the Clyde Miller, which appears in Derby Mercury in August 1895.

Wednesday, August 7 - 1895
Both Stevenson and John Miller are Clyde men, and played for that famous Scotch team last season. Miller is a forward of exceptional ability, and can play either centre or inside left. He has played both for Sunderland and Sheffield Wednesday. When he left the latter team it was reported that he was “done up,” but such was not the case; the committee paid him off because he was injured whilst playing in a match. Since then he has regularly assisted Clyde, and last season showed splendid form. Hugh McQueen is one of the player’s brothers, who did so much for Liverpool in their first appearance in the League. Although the Liverpudlians did not do very well they played some few good fine games, and one of their achievements was to beat the County at Derby. McQueen can play outside right or outside left, and more is expected from him that from either of the other new men. (Derby Mercury, 07-08-1895)

I assume that "done up" means Wednesday lost faith in him, probably because of the injury sustained in September 1893?

In a preview article of the coming season on print in Sheffield Evening Telegraph, 25 August 1893 there is only one Miller mentioned, and that is the new player from Liverpool.

The thing I cannot get my head around is the mention of Sunderland in this article.

John Miller is still a mystery.

Regards,

Kjell

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