October 26, 1863
Last evening a somewhat numerous and influential meeting of the captains or other representatives of the football clubs of the metropolis and the suburbs was held at the Freemasons’ Tavern, Great Queen Street, Lincoln’s-inn-fields, for the purpose of promoting the adoption of a general code of rules, and generally to bring the game into a mere definite position.
The following clubs were represented by one or more of their officers: –
Barnes, Blackheath, Blackheath Proprietary School, Percival-house Blackheath, Kensington School, Crystal Palace, Charterhouse School, Crusaders, Forest (Leytonstone), N.N. Kilburn, W.O. (War-office), &c.
Mr. Pember, N.N. Kilburn Club, having been voted to the chair, observed that the adoption of a certain set of rules by all football players was greatly to be desired, and having that object in view, the meeting had been called to carry it into effect as far as practicable; Mr. Ebenezer Cobb Morley (Barnes) moved, and Mr. Mackenzie (Forest Club, Leytonstone) seconded, the following resolution: – “That it is advisable that a football association should be formed for the purpose of settling a code of rules for the regulations of the game of football.”
Mr. B.F. Hartshorne said that though he felt it was most desirable that a definite set of rules for football should be generally adopted, yet, as the representative of the Charterhouse School, he could not pledge himself to any course of action without seeing more clearly what other schools would do in the matter. On the part of the Charter-house, he would willingly coalesce if the other public schools would do the same. Probably at an more advanced stage of the association the opinion of the generality of the great school would be obtained.
The chairman said every association must have a beginning, and they would be very happy to have the co-operation of the last speaker at a future meeting. The resolution for the formation of the institution was then put and carried. The officers were elected as follows: – Mr. A. Pember, president; Mr. Ebenezer Cobb Morley (Barnes), hon. secretary; Mr. F.M. Campbell (Blackheath), treasurer.
The annual subscription was fixed at one guinea, all clubs being eligible if of one year’s standing, and to be entitled to send two representatives to the yearly meeting, to be held, last week in September, when the rules would be revised and the general business arrangements carried out. The hon. secretary was requested to advertise the annual meeting for a day to be hereafter fixed, and with a vote of thanks to Mr. Pember, for his conduct in the chair, the meeting, which was most unanimous, came to a close.
(Source: London Daily News: October 27, 1863)
Article from Bell’s Life: October 31, 1863.