A year older than club colleague, Archie Lang, Joe Lindsay would win the first of his eight caps in the same match in 1880. However, his path to that cap had been far shorter not least because his Dumbarton First Team career had begun considerably later. His debut had been in 1877 at the age of nineteen. Moreover, his retirement from the game would also be later, after sixteen years in 1893, by which time he was turning out and still as a forward for Renton with several twists and turns in-between that included a further seven international appearances.
Joe Lindsay had been born in 1858 in Dennystown, the generic name for the area south of Dalreoch Station west of the Leven beyond Dumbarton itself. To trade he became a Ships' Painter. His Irish father had done the same work but had died in 1865, when Joe was six and his younger brother, Robert, four. They were therefore brought up by his Renfrewshire-born mother until in 1872 she remarried, became a Hempstead and had several more children.
Meantime the Lindsay family had moved into Dumbarton itself and by 1881 as Hempsteads were living on Quay St.. That was also the year that he, with George Ker and under the captainship of Andrew Watson, led the Scotland line in the 6-1 defeat of England at The Oval in London, the largest away-win the national team has ever achieved. And it was followed by Scottish Cup Final that season and the next, both lost, and finally the trophy in 1883.
However, at that point, with Joe still aged only twenty-five, the form of Dumbarton fell away, as did, coincidently or no, Joes participation. He is recorded as making only one start in both 1883-4 and 1884-5. But in 1885-6 he seemed to be back yet ended the season not at Bogside but with Rangers at Kinning Park, asked to help what was then a struggling team. In February it suffered it heaviest ever defeat. And there seems to have been something of a Lindsay-effect. The following season the club with him in the line-up reached the semi-final of the English FA Cup before defeat by the eventual winners, Aston Villa.
Given that success it might have been expected that when Joe sought to return to Dumbarton he would have been welcomed with open arms. In fact he found he had lost his place and was forced, or chose to join rival Dumbarton Athletic. It would in successive seasons reach the second-round and then the quarter-finals losing to the increasingly powerful Renton on both occasions. That was before in 1889 Dumbarton and Athletic decided to amalgamate, Lindsay, now thirty, was demoted once more, playing only three times, scoring once, and again decided on other action. First he took work on a boat to New Zealand. Then on return he joined Renton and, although his stay was just two seasons, it was one of two events that changed his life, the other being marriage.
In 1896 in Dumbarton and from his mother's and stepfather's house he married local girl, Janet "Jessie" Hunter. They were to have five children, three girls and two boys, who grew up initially still in Dumbarton but then in Renton. By 1921 the family was living there on Lennox St. and it was at 9, Lennox that Joe would die in 1933, a month before his seventy-fifth birthday to be buried, we believe in Dumbarton Cemetery, and Janet would follow in 1946.
1861 - N/A
1881 - 1, Quay St., Dumbarton
1891 - (1, Quay St., Dumbarton)
1896 - 1 1/2, Quay St., Dumbarton
1901 - 48, Glasgow Rd., Dumbarton
1911 - 12, Burnside St., Dumbarton
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