John Fulford WATSON


Guernsey Number:
Career: 1882 to 1883
NFC Games:
NFC Goals:
Debut: v Royal Park (Adelaide) 6th May 1882
Finale: v Port Adelaide (Kensington) 22nd September 1883

Premierships: 1882, 1883
Leading Goalkicker: 1882
VFL/AFL Clubs: Melbourne


John Fulford Watson was born 9 November, 1860, Port Elliot, South Australia
He died in May, 1884, when he drowned in the Fitzroy River near Rockhampton, Queensland (his date of death was given as 30 May or 31 May, 1884)
According to the Melbourne FC history website, Demonwiki " 'Jammy' Watson was a centreman who played in 1880 and 1881 before moving to Norwood in 1882. During a visit to Melbourne that year he played one game against Essendon." *

Watson had two outstanding seasons at Norwood, playing as a follower and at the end of 1883 the Evening Journal reported that "There is scarcely any doubt but that Watson (Norwood) was the most brilliant man of 1883" ( 6 October 1883, p2). Newspaper reports after his death indicated that he was planning to return to Norwood for the 1884 season.

Former Norwood player Julian Woods, in an article on past champions, paid tribute to Jammy Watson;

"Specially gifted ... was 'Jack or "Jammy" Watson, as he was generally called. He played for Melbourne and, in all my days, I never saw a more brilliant exponent of the game. He was a superb high mark, a fine kick with either foot, an incomparable dodger, and had an intuition as to the right thing to do in difficulties, that was almost staggering. Unfortunately, he, like so many of the Melbourne players of that time, was an individualist, and unless he could have been broken of that he would not be a great -catch—wonderful as he was— in the game as it is now played. Poor fellow! He was drowned in the hey-day of his youth when returning to Adelaide from Brisbane.”
(Express 7 June 1923 p.8)

* See

 C Lane March 2018, W Heading January 2023

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