Charlie Athersmith pictured in Aston Villa colours in 1897
|Full name||William Charles Athersmith|
|Date of birth||10 May 1872|
|Place of birth||Bloxwich, England|
|Date of death||18 September 1910(aged 38)|
|Place of death||Shifnal, England|
|Playing position||Outside right|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only
Athersmith was born William Charles Athersmith Harper in Bloxwich, Staffordshire to Isaac Harper and Mary Jane Wootton. Before becoming a professional footballer he was an office clerk in Birmingham where he married Elizabeth Baggott in 1893. He is a first cousin to Rotherham United F.C. and Liverpool player Vic Wright. He played the majority of his career at Aston Villa, making 307 appearances and scoring 85 goals.
While at Villa Athersmith played a key role in their title winning sides of 1894, 1896, 1897, 1899 and 1900 as well as reaching three F A cup finals, finishing on the losing side in 1892 before gaining winners medals in 1895 and Double-winning final of the 1896–97 season. Athersmith's time at Villa Park also saw him in the side who suffered a sensational F A cup exit against Millwall Athletic in 1900
Many Villa fans from the era often recalled a famous incident during a league game in 1901 against Sheffield United which was played in driving freezing rain. Many of the players, including the legendary United goalkeeper Willie Foulke suffered mild frostbite in the bitter conditions. Finally, early in the second half Charlie had had enough and borrowed an umbrella from a member of the crowd. Minutes later United's Ernie Needham went one better and took a great coat from a spectator. Athersmith, complete with umbrella later scored.
- Joyce, Michael (2004). Football League Players' Records 1888 to 1939. Nottingham: SoccerData (Tony Brown). ISBN 978-1-899468-67-6.
- Match report Aston Villa vs Millwall Athletic 1900[permanent dead link]
- Athersmith and the umbrella
- Matthews, Tony (1995). Birmingham City: A Complete Record. Derby: Breedon Books. pp. 148–151. ISBN 978-1-85983-010-9.
- Charlie Athersmith at Englandstats.com