Denis Lawson

Denis Lawson was born and lived all his young life in Lennoxtown in Stirlingshire, indeed in the same house on the Main St.. Both his parents were locally-born, his father a Calico Prints Works Foreman, his mother the daughter of Irish immigrants. 

And Denis might have followed his elder brother into the same print-works but for football, It began first time in Kirkintilloch, at Hearts and Rob Roy, a right-winger, until he enlisted in 1916, was captured in 1917 and spent until late 1918 as a POW. Then on release he would restart as a junior at Kilsyth Emmet, have trials for Celtic and St. Mirren and in 1919 be signed by the latter.   

In fact The Buddies would be finish mid-table in that first post-War season but struggle in the next only save by League reconstruction. But after that things improved. For the club there were eighth- and sixth-place finishes and for Lawson himself selection against England in 1923 in a 2:2 drawn where Scotland rather got away with it, coming back twice at home. In fact he was to be slightly unlucky in that he was dropped in between appearances by Alex Alexander, who himself would be superseded by Alex Jackson. 

However, the exposure brought interest from Down South and he moved to Cardiff City, where in his first season the club would be runner-up in the First Division but then tail-off to mid-table. At this point there was clearly something of a falling out between cub and player. It caused Denis at twenty-eight to leave, not find a place elsewhere in Britain but take himself off across the Atlantic to the Springfield Babes in Massachusetts. Soccer was booming but the Babes collapsed in December 1926 and he moved on to Rhode Island and Providence F.C., sometimes called the Clamdiggers, where he was an ever-present. 

Yet once more Lawson did not stay, returning to Britain and the best part of a season at Wigan Borough, struggling in the English Third Division North. And whilst again he was from arrival an ever-present there was no improvement, he moved on and now aged thirty returned to Scotland for a couple of months at Clyde and then almost final retirement. 

"Almost final" is used because after a year out Denis put on his boots once more for a season at Brechin. It had had finished rock-bottom of the Scottish League in 1930 yet retained its place but with him in the team was able to climb to relative safety. 

So it was that Lawson finally hung up his boots in 1931, returned to Lennoxtown and began the second part of his life. Working then as an insurance agent he married Catherine Simpson in Lennoxtown, they settling in Glasgow. And it would be there that in 1968 he would pass away at the age of seventy in Cowcaddens, Catherine outliving him by thirteen years, dying still in city in 1991 aged seventy-seven. 

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