Ben Millers

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Ben Millers was a U.S. soccer club sponsored by the Ben W. Miller Hat Company of St. Louis, Missouri.[1] Founded in 1913, it entered the St. Louis Soccer League two years later, winning seven league titles and one National Challenge Cup before its disbandment in 1935.

History[edit]

A Ben Millers team, managed by E. Brinkman, competed in the St. Louis Association Foot Ball League during the 1904-05 season.[2] In 1913, Ben Millers entered the Federal Park League in St. Louis, Missouri. The Federal Park League had been created that season after disagreements about permissible levels of professionalism had split the St. Louis Soccer League .[3] St. Leo's, the city’s only fully professional team joined with several other St. Louis teams, including Ben Millers, to form the Federal Park League. This league existed only two seasons as the differences dividing the previous SLSL teams were reconciled leading to the re-establishment of the SLSL in 1915. Ben Millers joined the reconstituted SLSL, immediately asserting its dominance by winning three consecutive league titles. While the National Challenge Cup was established by the United States Football Association in 1914, the St. Louis teams did not enter it until 1918. In 1920, Ben Millers became the first team outside of the northeast to win the trophy.[4] While they never repeated as champions, they made the final in 1926. The team continued strong into the late 1920s but began to fade with the new decade. Frankie Vaughan took over as manager for the 1935-36 season.

Team ownership[edit]

Peter Ratican owned Ben Millers in the early 1920s. Following his death in 1923, his widow owned the team for a time.[5]

Record[edit]

Year Record League National Cup
1913-1914 7-4-2 2nd Did not enter
1914-1915 8-3-2 2nd Did not enter
1915-1916 12-5-3 Champion Did not enter
1916-1917 10-8-2 Champion Did not enter
1917-1918 9-5-3 Champion
1918-1919 5-9-7 4th
1919-1920 8-6-7 Champion Champion
1920-1921 8-3-6 2nd
1921-1922 8-7-6 2nd Fourth Round
1922-1923 4-8-5 4th
1923-1924 2-8-4 4th First Round
1924-1925 11-4-3 Champion Did not enter
1925-1926 8-3-3 Champion Final
1926-1927 8-3-1 Champion Quarterfinal
1927-1928 5-7-2 3rd Semifinal
1928-1929 5-7-5 3rd First Round
1929-1930 3-4-7 3rd First Round
1930-1931 6-7-4 4th Semifinal
1931-1932 7-7-2 2nd First Round
1932-1933 5-8-2 3rd First Round
1933-1934 6-6-1 2nd Second Round
1934-1935 0-10-4 4th First Round
1935-1936 2-6-0 4th First Round

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wangerin, David (2008). Soccer in a Football World: The Story of America’s Forgotten Game (Paperback). Temple University Press. (ISBN 1-5921-3885-3). 
  2. ^ 1904-05 Spalding's Soccer Foot Ball Guide, see p. 20
  3. ^ The Year in American Soccer - 1913
  4. ^ Ben Millers of St. Louis Defeat Fore River For National Soccer Title
  5. ^ January 22, 1923 The Globe article

External links[edit]