James "Jimmy" Connor

Jimmy Connor was considered by no less than Raich Carter as better than Stanley Matthews although they were from slightly different eras and Connor was a left-winger and Matthews on the right.  

Jimmy was born in Renfrew in 1909. He was the son a shipyard-worker, both his father and mother from Co. Antrim in Ireland. He learned his game at Glasgow Perthshire, where he would win a junior international cap before in 1926 being signed by St. Mirren. And he remained at Love St. for four seasons before, when in 1928 Saints manager, Johnny Cochrane, took over at Sunderland, he followed him two years later. It was just before he was called up for a summer international against France in Paris, the first of four caps over the next three years, the last against England, unfortunately a 3-0 defeat. 

Whilst was clearly some player it is unfortunate that the first part of his playing career overlapped with that of the last part of Alan Morton's at Rangers, thirty-one caps over twelve years to 1932, and the rest with that of Dally Duncan at Derby, fourteen over five. And it was probably equally so in the main for the Sunderland team, all the time under Cochrane and of which for seven seasons before injury Connor was such an integral part. Despite him It remained resolutely mid-table that is except for three consecutive seasons. In 1933-34 it was sixth, in 1934-5 second and in 1935-36 League Champion. 

After his 1937 injury, aged twenty-eight, Jimmy would be able to recover but he then struggled to get back into the team. It lead to a decision in 1939 at only thirty to take retirement and return to working at what he had been originally trained, a joiner. By then he had married; in 1937 in Sunderland. Hs wife was local-girl Edna Hudson and the following year they were to have one son. 

And at that they would live their lives out on Wearside. Edna Connor would die there in 1961 at the age of just forty-five. Jimmy would outlive her by almost two decades passing away still in the city in 1980, four weeks before his seventy-first birthday. 

Birth Locator:

1909 - 3, Richard St., Renfrew

 

Residence Locations:

1911 - 3, Richard St., Renfrew

1921 - 53, Hairst St., Renfrew

(1939 - 3A, Rock Ter., Middleton-on-Tees, Barnard Castle, Durham)

1957-80 - 18, Grange Park Ave., Sunderland

 

Death Locator:

1980 - 18, Grange Park Ave., Sunderland

 

Grave Locator:

N/A

 

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