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Wednesday, 15 November 2017 - 15:29
numbers on the front
the definitive story of the washington whips 1967
Thursday, 09 November 2017 - 20:02
armistice day 2017
event at pittodrie
Sunday, 08 October 2017 - 16:25
numbers on the front
the story of the washington whips
Saturday, 19 August 2017 - 13:39
jimmy philip lecture
ref who became manager
Trust Logo
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 - 10:31
female footballers in aberdeen
first women's football in the granite city?
Wednesday, 31 May 2017 - 11:27
lady footballers at pittodrie

fine display by dick kerr's xi

plucky display by aberdeen team

Friday, 14 April 2017 - 17:34
a fanzine story
thirty years old this year - the northern light and its heirs
Tuesday, 28 February 2017 - 15:51
one for the statos
lennie loses a goal
Tuesday, 01 November 2016 - 10:50
prized programme gifted to afc heritage
rare programme from aberdeen's first european away match added to the aberdeen collection
Wednesday, 07 September 2016 - 18:05
big red quiz 2016
come and have a go if you think you're red enough!
Saturday, 03 September 2016 - 10:36
peacock add to the aberdeen collection
the dons and pink floyd come together on the peacock stand at the aaf
Tuesday, 19 July 2016 - 18:39
jimmy philip medal
jimmy gains a canadian gift
Tuesday, 07 June 2016 - 16:21
whips remembered
special memento of the washington whips team.
Tuesday, 17 November 2015 - 20:01
tales from the dugout
a collection of sometimes ribald football stories about what goes on in dugouts across the country.
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 - 15:34
armistice day at pittodrie
2015 commemoration
Remembrance Poppy
Tuesday, 27 October 2015 - 14:44
big red quiz 2015
annual challenge to find the reddest fans around!
Sunday, 06 September 2015 - 14:42
if goalposts could talk
the life and times of inverurie locomotive works football club
by david r. fasken
Sunday, 30 August 2015 - 17:40
graham leggat - star of the a. f. c.
always a hero
Saturday, 01 August 2015 - 16:17
opening day 1899
language, gentlemen, please!
Saturday, 22 November 2014 - 16:44
historic poster revealed
afc heritage and buckie thistle rescue a shared piece of aberdeenshire cup history
Monday, 10 November 2014 - 16:25
armistice day at pittodrie
the sixth annual commemoration to remember aberdeen fc's war dead to be held.
Monday, 13 October 2014 - 11:53
vintage boots discovered
a pair of football boots dating to 1904 to go on show at pittodrie.
Saturday, 11 October 2014 - 11:59
big red quiz a big red success
knowledgeable dons fans help raise funds for afc heritage
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 - 20:34
big red quiz night
show off your dandy knowledge and help the funds of the afc heritage trust - friday 10th october 2014.
come and have a go if you think you know enough!
Thursday, 17 July 2014 - 16:54
a view on football
aberdeen under the football fiend. (by an occasional)
Tuesday, 17 June 2014 - 12:59
a new display for the latest trophy
dons' fans help to get the league cup on show at pittodrie
Monday, 31 March 2014 - 14:02
coca-cola bike winner announced
stephen's bike goes north
Tuesday, 11 March 2014 - 13:56
happy real birthday aberdeen
aberdonian football hits 132 years old.
Friday, 14 February 2014 - 11:47
king of the wild frontier
sing a song of graham leggat
Wednesday, 06 November 2013 - 16:10
remembrance event on monday
pittodrie remembers
Tuesday, 01 October 2013 - 15:05
medal comes home to pittodrie
after 66 years willie waddell's cup medal finds a new home
Thursday, 08 August 2013 - 13:14
1904 and all that
the "1904 door" sorted
Sunday, 24 March 2013 - 15:09
the aberdeen collection growing
very early pittodrie programme acquired
Monday, 31 December 2012 - 13:24
trf cartoonist does his bit for afc heritage
special artwork to entertain the red army.
Saturday, 10 November 2012 - 13:31
the aberdeen men can't play football
the story of victorian football in aberdeen.
Sunday, 04 November 2012 - 15:22
trust store opens
heritage and related publications avaialable online.
Saturday, 29 September 2012 - 11:08
cycling away for afc heritage trust
dons' fan puts in the effort.
Saturday, 21 April 2012 - 13:38
new magazine available
share with the former players
Friday, 02 March 2012 - 10:52
mind my bike
top defender enjoys narrow escape.
Tuesday, 03 January 2012 - 12:40
an historic encounter
rare meeting at forfar
Sunday, 25 December 2011 - 12:50
a merry christmas to all our followers
season's greetings
Sunday, 18 December 2011 - 16:54
eddie turnbull memorial unveiled
eddie's boys gather at pittodrie
Saturday, 12 November 2011 - 11:56
11th day at pittodrie
the afc armistice day event continues to grow.
Friday, 04 November 2011 - 22:55
armistice day event at pittodrie
an additional player will be added to the roll of honour.
Saturday, 13 August 2011 - 11:24
new season - new programmes
afc heritage continues to issue programmes for the under-19s home matches.
Sunday, 17 July 2011 - 19:10
the first aberdeenshire cup final
how the cup was won.
Wednesday, 20 April 2011 - 12:09
edinburgh footballers stoned.
disturbance at aberdeen
Sunday, 06 March 2011 - 15:39
afc heritage gets some help
the visit of hearts attracted some great support for the afc heritage trust.
Wednesday, 05 January 2011 - 13:14
book on arbroath for aberdonians
new arbroath fc littered with information for aberdonians and dons' historians.
Cover of Arbroath FC Miscellany
Thursday, 23 December 2010 - 13:36
a merry christmas to all our readers
festive greetings to the dons' diaspora
Well used AFC party hat.
whips remembered
Whips Print

07 June 2016 16:21

With the summer of '17 fast approaching, many Dons' fans with long memories are casting their minds back to one of the most memorable summers in the history of Aberdeen Football Club. In the summer of 1967 a party of Eddie Turnbull's Dons set sail for the USA to take part in the NASL's inaugural league season. They were going to represent the Federal Capital under the name of the Washington Whips and it was going to be an experience that none of those who took part would ever forget.

There were fifteen players in the travelling party, in the company of trainer Davie Shaw. Eddie Turnbull was unable to travel initially so appointed Harry Melrose as his stand-in, a role that set Harry in good stead for his footballing future. The full travelling squad, away from home on a six-week adventure was: Davie Shaw (Trainer), Frank Munro, Willie Watt, Bobby Clark, Jim Storrie, Jens Petersen, Ally Shewan, Martin Buchan, Ian Taylor, Jim Whyte, Pat Wilson, Jimmy Smith, Dave Johnston, Harry Melrose (Captain), Jimmy Wilson, Tommy McMillan and Jim Hermiston. Eddie Turnbull followed on some time later but still manged to fit in a meeting with President Lyndon Baines Johnson, who was the most famous season ticket holder for the Whips.

The tournament would see the Dons play a total of 14 matches, including three against Wolverhampton Wanderers. Every team came from either Europe or South America and took on a name representative of the cities that served as their home bases. The structure of the league was a little peculiar to Scottish fans, being made up of an Eastern and a Western Division, where every team played every other team once. A feature of the tournament was that players wore numbers on the front of the jerseys as well as on the backs, no doubt a twist aimed at helping an uneducated public to keep track of who was whom. The Washington Whips emerged as the winners of the Eastern competition and the LA Wolves took top place in the Western Division and they went forward to meet in a final, winner-takes-all, play-off at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in front of a crowd of 17,824 spectators and watched by a TV audience of unknown proportions across the USA. The coverage by ATV was, to the ears of more knowledgeable football fans, somewhat eccentric and even comical at times, but the one statement that stood out was that the Final match was the "greatest soccer game ever seen, anywhere." Games don't always live up to such billing, but this one really was a belter, packed with goals and incidents that would make a modern day referee weep.

The Whips had to play most of the match with only 10 men after Jimmy Smith was sent off for a "misdemeanour" but it failed to upset them and they gave as good as they got throughout the ninety minutes. At full-time the score was level at four all and the match went into extra time, at the end of which the scores were still level - at five each, and so to the innovative "Golden Goal" period, or next goal the winner if you were so inclined. Sadly, for the Whips, that goal went to Wolves when a cruel twist saw Ally Shewan put through his own goal, but take nothing away from the Reds, they had helped put on a truly remarkable game and despite the rough play and fisticuffs that were a feature of the match, the two sets of players were all pals at the end and shared the lap of honour.

Now, to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of a wonderful adventure, a special print has been produced in a joint venture between the Club and its Youth Academy, along with the AFC Heritage Trust. The original painting has been created by artist Stewart Beckett well known for his many sporting artworks and a print limited to 350 numbered copies is being made available through the Club Shop. Many of the Whips squad have reunited to sign the first 150 copies of the print, demonstrating, not for the first time the strength of their feeling for the Dons and their former comrades.

Launching on Thursday 9th June, the print offers a great chance to help raise funds for Youth Development, whilst at the same time celebrating a great event in the Club's history. In parallel to the prints, numbered copies of the Artist's Proofs will also be available.

You can find details for the fixtures and see images of most of the match programmes at Whips Matches