This piece from the Rockhampton Morning Bulletin in 1887 gives us a curious insight into the state of play in country Queensland 135 years ago. Four soccer teams in Rockhampton! Also telling is the co-operation between codes with the Rugby clubs happy to conform to soccer rules for the sake of the trophy competition.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE MORNING BULLETIN.
Sir,-Will you allow me, through the medium of your valuable paper, to make a few remarks re the Stewart football trophy ? I understand the above valuable trophy was presented by Messrs. Stewart and Go., to be competed for by the football clubs of Rockhampton and district. I believe there are now in Rockhampton and district two clubs playing under Rugby Union Rules, and four playing under British Association Rules.
The British Association Clubs have appointed delegates to meet the delegates from the Rugby Union, and wish to settle the matter amicably, and commence a series of matches for the trophy; to play under British Association Rules. Although the Rugby Clubs are only two in number, I think I can safely say in point of numbers they can muster more members than the other four clubs ; and a considerable number of their players are old Association players. Therefore they should be able to select a team from each Rugby Club, able to hold their own against any other Association team in the district. Messrs. Stewart and Co., I understand, have left it entirely to the footballers to arrange under what rules it shall be contested : and the members of the Rockhampton Football Association are desirous that, either next Saturday, or the succeeding Saturday, (when the Mount Morgan team play a match against the Rockhampton Ramblers at Rockhampton) should be the commencement of the trophy matches. Hoping the matter may soon be satisfactorily arranged, and apologising for taking up your valuable space.
I remain, Yours &c.,
July 17, 1887.