Henry "Harry" Ritchie

Henry "Harry" Ritchie was a winger, on either flank, latterly the right, who played briefly south of the border on Merseyside but had made his name in Edinburgh at Hibs in Edinburgh with three hundred plus appearances and two caps. But, born in 1900, he had started life on a country estate in Kirkcudbright and been brought up in Perth, the youngest child of a Fife-born coachman and a mother from by Carstairs. Moreover, he had received his pivotal football education from seventeen to nineteen not in the junior game but whilst serving in the Royal Navy in The Great War, showing enough promise then to be scooped up by the top-flight, senior game almost immediately on demobilisation. 

Harry was to spend the best part of decade from 1919 to 1928 at Easter Road, there forming a partnership with the equally youthful Jimmy Dunn, the club rising to as high as third in 1925 and reaching but losing two Cup Finals, in 1923 and 1924. Indeed Dunn would in 1928 be one of the Wembley Wizards and then join Everton with Ritchie was brought in to join him just months later, no doubt on recommendation. However, whilst Dunn would stay at Goodison for seven seasons, Ritchie would be there for just two before, now at thirty, moving north once more briefly to Dundee and then to home-town St. Johnstone for three seasons that would see it re-promoted to the First Division in 1932, reaching fifth in 1933 and the sticking.

Back in Perth, as well as football Ritchie ran a Dairy Produce business, living with his wife and only child. He had married in Glasgow in 1924, his bride London-born Violet Austin from Crosshill, their daughter born in Portobello. However, at some point after 1935 and short periods with Brechin City and Arbroath the family moved to Nottingham and he returned to working as a Cooper, the trade, to which he had been apprenticed as a teenager. It was there his health began to worsen, enough to require an operation at the city's General Hospital, which he did not survive. He was just forty-one years old, outlived by Violet by thirty years. She would die still in Nottingham in 1971. 

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