29 Jan 2022

Down Memory Lane: Recalling Longford's 1937 All-Ireland win

Remembering the Longford All-Ireland Junior Championship winning heroes of 1937

Longford, All-Ireland Junior Football Champions 1937. This photograph was taken during half-time of the 1937 All-Ireland Junior Football Championship Final in Catford, London where Longford defeated London by 0-9 to 0-4. Front row l to r; Johnny Rogers (Mullinalaghta), Harry Rogers (Mullinalaghta), PM Farrell (St Brigid’s Killashee), Stevie Reilly (Dromard), Joe McDermott (St Brigid’s Killashee), Jim Murphy (Clonguish), Joe Regan (St Mary’s Granard), Tony Sheridan (St Mary’s Granard). Back; Canon McLoughlin, Jim Mannix NT (Ballinalee), Barney Reilly (Mullinalaghta), Mr Adair (Longford), Jim Murphy (St Brigid’s Killashee), Jim Keenan (St Patrick’s Ardagh), Dinny Hughes (Killoe), Bill Keenan (St Patrick’s Ardagh, captain), Joe Lyons (St Brigid’s Killashee), Paddy Keenan (St Patrick’s Ardagh), Frank Marsden (St Brigid’s Killashee) and John McCarthy (St Mary’s Granard).

Eighty years ago, on Sunday, October 10, 1937, Longford were crowned All-Ireland Junior Football Champions after they defeated London by 0-9 to 0-4 at the GAA Ground, Bromley Road, Catford, London.

En-route to glory and prior to that trip across the Irish Sea, Longford defeated Offaly by 3-7 to 4-1 in the Leinster Final on August 1, 1937 at Pearse Park - the home of Longford GAA which was officially opened three months earlier. Mayo and Kerry played a tournament fixture to mark the occasion on April 25, while Longford v Roscommon was the curtain-raiser on that auspicious occasion.
In the All-Ireland semi-final at Breffni Park, Cavan on August 8, Longford were convincing 2-14 to 0-7 winners over Antrim. Then in the All-Ireland ‘Home’ Final at Roscommon on September 19, Longford got the better of Mayo by 1-7 to 1-6. And ultimate success was captured at London’s expense.
The triumphant panel of 1937 came together for a Golden Jubilee celebration of their victory in 1987.

LONGFORD (v London): Gerry Marsden; Jimmy Keenan, Joe Lyons, Harry Rogers; Stevie Reilly, Bill Keenan, Paddy Keenan; Joe McDermott, Barney Reilly; Jim Murphy, John McCarthy, Jim Murphy; Tony Sheridan, Joe Regan, Jack Rogers.
The substitutes were Paddy Farrell, Frank Marsden, Dinny Hughes, Peter Duignan and Wilson McNerney.

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