Alumni

Alumni



The story starts with Alexander Watson Hutton (1853-1936) from the Gorbals. His family were afflicted with TB. Watson-Hutton the teacher therefore emigrated to Buenos Aires in 1882 to work at the St. Andrew’s Scotch School. He fell out with them and set up the BA English High School (BAEHS). Why was this the reason? The legend states how his boys kept breaking the windows of the school, when playing football. This does not give him the respect due, to a man who was clearly incorporating new ideas on Physical Education into the curriculum.

At the BAEHS f. 1884 AWH's devotion to the Scottish Game received full reign. In 1893 he was responsible for the 2nd attempt to set up a League. He succeeded. He kept the original league name and set up a football club: The Alumni in 1898. The Alumni (originally the English HSAC) were the first great Argentine team. They spread the scientific football of the Scotch Professor to the whole Nation - particularly through the genius of one family: the offspring of James Brown.

In 1824 James Brown and his family sailed from Leith on the SS Symmetry for a new life. 220 Scots landed in Buenos Aires. In 1838 they founded the St. Andrew’s Scotch School. Of crucial importance to football are his descendants. At least 8 Browns played for Alumni. Jorge Gibson (The Patriarch), Juan Domingo, Ernesto Alejandro (Pacifico) played v Uruguay in 1910. Add Arnoldo Penfold Watson Hutton, son of AWH and you have the first Scotch Professor greats born in South America. Alumni passed on the Scottish Game to Argentina by becoming Argentines themselves. Alumni were the first team to beat a foreign club in 1906. All their players were born in Argentina except for Andrew Mack and he was from Canberra, Australia!

Thursday 26th November 1911 Alumni played their last tournament. They kept going theoretically until 24 April 1913. A newspaper had called Alumni the ‘Brown team’ due to the number of grandchildren of James Brown who played in the team. This bit is important. I regard all of them as examples of the Scotch Professor, yet they were born in Argentina. The passing and running game was theirs by right. Their grandad James Snr. arrived in 1825 from Leith. James Brown Jnr. had 9 sons - 7 of whom played for Alumni. The eldest was Diego Hope b. 1875. The link to the Old Country was then 50 years distant.

Here, is the handing over of the game to a new country. The same story, from many lands, of Scots and their assimilation. What was spoken in the family home, in the 1890s? I would hope it was Spanish. Argentine made the Scotch Professor game their own. Alumni will remain as the first ever great Argentine team.

Alumni Athletic Club 1910

Alumni AC 1911