George Grieve Liston was one of Norwood’s most dependable players, over a long and distinguished career. He played in eight premierships, and was a member of the 1888 Championship of Australia team. He was a brother of Thomas Young Liston, who played for Norwood in 1886. [Another brother, John Stewart Liston, may also have appeared with Norwood in 1886]
George was a resolute half-back flanker for Norwood. Highly regarded as a leader, he was club vice-captain in 1886-87, and served as acting captain on several occasions in the absence of “Topsy” Waldron.
He was a member of the Norwood Football Club committee for six years, between 1885 and 1891.
His sporting abilities ranged well beyond football. He was a fine cricketer with the Norwood Cricket Club, by far the strongest club in the SACA, and held his own with team mates of the calibre of George Giffen, Walter Giffen and Jack Lyons, all of whom played test matches for Australia.
As a young man he was a capable amateur boxer, while in his later years he took up lawn bowls. He was so successful at bowls, that he quickly rose to the top ranks of the Adelaide Oval Bowling Club.
George Liston was born in Tanunda in 1860, but spent most of his life in the Norwood district. His parents, William and Jemima Liston, had immigrated from Scotland, where they were married at St Cuthbert’s, Edinburgh, in 1851. After arriving in South Australia in 1852, they first went to the Barossa Valley, before moving to Norwood in the early 1860’s.
The Liston family lived at number 27 Beulah Road, Norwood, from 1864. In 1883, they shifted to 22 Beulah Road, and this continued to be George’s home after his marriage to Lucy Harrison in 1906.
George was employed as a warehouseman with Good, Toms & Co, wholesale drapers and importers. He joined the firm as a teenager in 1878, and stayed there for his entire working life.
George Liston passed away on 6 June 1929, at the age of 69, just one day before the death of his old captain “Topsy” Waldron.
C Lane April 2018