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Page Last Updated
17 August 2018

Arthur Cursham

Notts County FC

6 appearances, 2 goals

P 6 W 2 D 0 L 4 F 12: A 17
33% successful


captain: twice
minutes played:


  Arthur William Cursham
"In the late years Mr. Cursham had been known in the field as 'R. H. Venables'." - Monday, 19 January 1885, Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser
Birth Monday, 14 March 1853 in St. Peters, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire [registered in Nottingham, March 1853].
Baptism 10 April 1853 at Holy Trinity Church, Nottingham. Living at Wheeler Gate;


According to the 1861 census, Arthur was the fourth of ten children to William George and Harriette (née Nicholson), living in Wilford, with four servants. His father is a solicitor.


According to the 1871 census, Arthur W. was the eldest of eight lodgers, seven of them Cursham's, living at Wilford Green in Wilford.


According to the 1881 census, Arthur W., now a colliery manager was visiting his older brother Francis, who was now widowed, at Main Street in Cropwell-Butler in Basford.

Marriage to Emmeline Maria Whyte [registered in Strand, London, September 1882]. One son, Arthur St. Wilfrid, born in Ambergate 1883. [registered in Belper, September 1883]
Death Christmas Eve, Wednesday, 24 December 1884 at Wilford Grove, Peru, Florida, aged 31 years 285 days [not registered in UK].
CURSHAM.―At Wilford-grove. Peru, Florida, on Christmas Eve (of malaria), Arthur William Cursham died at Florida on Christmas Eve, but the melancholy intelligence did not reach Nottingham, late of Wilford, Notts, and Harthsay, Derbyshire." - Wednesday, 21 January 1885, The Derby Mercury


"Footballers all over the country will learn with regret of the death of a famous exponent of the Association game Arthur William Cursham died at Florida on Christmas Eve, but the melancholy intelligence did not reach Nottingham, his native town, until Saturday morning. The cause of death was malarial fever, from which Mr. Cursham had lost one of his children only a short time before It is about ten months since the once-celebrated International forward left Nottingham for Florida, where he had embarked in an orange-growing speculation. His brother, members of the Notts Club, the Nottingham Forest, the Sheffield Club, and others raised a testimonial of £300 as a mark of the appreciation of his work in connection with football. Arthur Cursham first played for his country against Scotland in 1876, and he was subsequently the captain in International games between that year and 1883. He was also a good cricketer and played for his country, being one of the Notts eleven who defeated the first team of Australians. He was the captain of the Notts Football eleven during last season, and his last match was against Queen's Park in April 1884. His age was 3[1]."

Tuesday, 20 January 1885, The Athletic News/Wednesday, 21 January 1885, The Derby Mercury/Preston Herald/Sheffield Daily Telegraph


According to the 1891 census, Arthur's wife Emmeline had returned to 197 Alfred Street in St Mary's, Nottingham. Stated as a widow, she lives with her parents, William Hall and Annie Whyte, and her and Arthur's son, also called Arthur.


Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990] &

Playing Career

Club(s) Played for the Notts County FC club from 1875, becoming club captain, up until 1884. In his last season with County, he was known as R.H. Venables.
He also played occasionally for Grantham Town FC between 1876-79, and helped Nottingham Forest FC in their 1879-80 campaign. Throughout, he assisted other clubs, such as Oakham School FC, Nottingham Law FC, Nottingham Thursday Wanderers FC and Sheffield FC. In all, he played over 300 matches.
Club honours None
Individual honours Nottinghamshire FA (1875 against London), London FA and Sheffield FA.
His benefit match was on 3 April 1884 against Queen's Park FC, who defeated them 3-0, but had earned Arthur with £284 to emigrate with.
Distinctions Also played first-class cricket with Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire.
Height/Weight not known.


Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990].

England Career

Player number One of nine who became the 34th player (42) to appear for England.
Position(s) Forward
First match No. 5, 4 March 1876, Scotland 3 England 0, a friendly match at The West of Scotland Cricket Ground, Hamilton Crescent, Partick, Glasgow, aged 22 years 356 days.
Last match No. 19, 10 March 1883, England 2 Scotland 3, a friendly match at Yorkshire County Cricket Ground, Bramall Lane, Highfield, Sheffield, aged 29 years 361 days.
Individual honours England's joint-Top Goalscorer (one 1878)
Distinctions Older brother of Harry Cursham. Brother-in-law of Harold Morse.
The youngest captain to score until Francis Sparks in 1880.
His untimely death meant he was the fifth England player to die, and first member of the 1876-79 and 1883 teams to die.

Beyond England

A mining engineer. A Colliery Proprietor/Manager in Ambergate, Derbyshire, according to the 1881 census. Emigrated to America in March 1884, and died shortly after. - An English Football Internationalists' Who's Who. Douglas Lamming (1990). Hatton Press, p.83/FindMyPast.com

The Numbers
parties Appearances withdrew minutes Goals Goals ave.min captain
7 6 one 510 2 255 min two
The minutes here given can only ever be a guideline and cannot therefore be accurate, only an approximation.
6 2 0 4 12 17 -5 1 1 2.00 2.83 33.3 -2

Match Record

Venue & Competition P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts % W/L
Home Friendly matches 4 2 0 2 10 7 +3 0 1 2.50 1.75 50.0 =0
Away 2 0 0 2 2 10 -8 1 0 1.00 5.00 00.0 -2

Match History
 Club: Notts County F.C. - six full appearances (540 min)

F.A. Committee (Charles Alcock) - six full appearances (540 min)x

Age 22
1 5 4 March 1876 - Scotland 3 England 0, The West of Scotland Cricket Ground, Partick Fr AL Start f

Age 23
2 6 3 March 1877 - England 1 Scotland 3, The Surrey Cricket Ground, Kennington Fr HL Start cf

Age 24
3 7 2 March 1878 - Scotland 7 England 2, Hampden Park, Glasgow Fr AL captain

Age 25
4 8 18 January 1879 - England 2 Wales 1, The Surrey Cricket Ground, Kennington (match lasted sixty minutes) Fr HW captain f

Age 29
5 17 3 February 1883 - England 5 Wales 0, The Surrey Cricket Ground, Kennington Fr HW Start 65 or
18 24 February 1883 - England 7 Ireland 0, Liverpool Cricket Ground, Liverpool Fr HW replacement, then withdrew
6 19 10 March 1883 - England 2 Scotland 3, Yorkshire Cricket Ground, Sheffield Fr HL Start ir