A life apart: the English working class, 1890-1914 by Standish Meacham

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By Standish Meacham

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Bert was given the front page of the Manchester Evening Chronicle on which to put his case. Pictured with his wife, he wrote of his need to go home, despite his reluctance to “leave a country where I have received nothing but friendliness and kindness, especially from Manchester City and their supporters”28. City chairman Robert Smith responded in the Evening News two days later. Trautmann, he said, had turned down the offer of a house (which would, nevertheless, have belonged to Manchester City); taking outside jobs into consideration (Trautmann worked as a motor mechanic in Hulme in Manchester) he was City’s top earner; Schalke had only offered £432 and two friendly matches, 27 Thanks to Colin Shindler, another chronicler of Manchester City matters, for suggesting this to me in an email, 1st November 2012.

By that time, though, he had long since been integrated into the northern English working class. He wore his own cap and muffler. He could very easily have said ‘our national game’. On his visit to Bremen back in 1949, his brother had told him “You’re a bloody Englishman now” (Rowlands 2005/1990: 82). In October of 1949 Bert Trautmann moved into what might be called the aristocracy of sporting labour12 when he signed for Manchester City. html. Access: 31st October 2011. html. Access: 31st October 2012.

Similarly, Steve Humphries of Testimony Films, makers of The Bert Trautmann Story, told me that his research had found no evidence of a demonstration: email 8th December 2012. 19 Manchester Evening News, 6th October 2012: 2. 36 Stephen Wagg pitals? I suggest he is biased. Must we hate the whole German race? ’, another City supporter. “It doesn’t matter two hoots”, wrote L. Ball of Manchester 14, “if City’s goalkeeper is German or English, black or white, Catholic or Protestant, Jewish or Gentile.

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