Arsenal 1919 – 2019: 100 years in the top flight 

We were asked by the Arsenal programme editor Andy Exley to write a few extra pieces for the programme last night. This article, which is a precis of all our previous work on this matter(1), is presented almost verbatim as we have added an exclusive of a segment of Norris’ letter to Catton in 1919.

As you may be aware, this season Arsenal are celebrating an unprecedented 100 consecutive years in the top flight of English football. For much of that time, the story of how the Gunners came to be in the First Division following the end of the First World War has been told and re-told in many publications. So much so that it now bears very little resemblance to what actually happened at a Special General Meeting held by the Football League on 10 March 1919. Using contemporary sources, we can now produce a true account of the events leading up to that date and what actually happened at the meeting.

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