Historical information

1903 or 1908 Moorabbin Australian Rules Football Club. Philip Jones, a relative of James Jones who was a pioneer settler in Moorabbin Shire, is holding the football.
In the late 1850s Melbourne's schools are first recorded organising football games modeled on precedents at English schools The earliest known such match was played on 15 June 1858 between Scotch College and Melbourne Grammar School on the St Kilda foreshore. On 10 July 1858, the Melbourne-based Bell's Life in Victoria and Sporting Chronicle published a letter by prominent Victorian cricketer Tom Wills, calling for the formation of a "foot-ball club" with a "code of laws" to keep cricketers fit during winter. The Melbourne Football Club's rules of 1859 are the oldest surviving set of laws for Australian football. The ten simple rules were drawn up on 17 May at a meeting chaired by Tom Wills and in attendance were journalists W. J. Hammersley and J. B. Thompson, and Thomas H. Smith. The rules were signed by Tom Wills, William Hammersley, J. Sewell, J. B. Thompson, Alex Bruce, T. Butterworth and Thomas H. Smith. Importantly, the rules were widely publicised and distributed. Having been codified in 1859, this means that Australian football is an older sport than most other football codes in the world, including soccer. As Geoffrey Blainey states, "soccer has no club that matches the antiquity of the early Victorian clubs." In 1859 several new football clubs formed including the Castlemaine Football Club, Geelong Football Club and the Melbourne University Football Club. The first football match played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) was not until 1876. Cricket authorities soon saw the opportunity to capitalise on the rapid growth of Australian football, however, and soon most grounds in Victoria were expanded to accommodate the dual purpose, a situation that continues to this day. Football matches between 1859 and 1899 were played in a 20-per-side format.
n 1896, delegates from the stronger and wealthier Victorian Football Association clubs—Carlton, Collingwood, Essendon, Fitzroy, Geelong, Melbourne, St Kilda and South Melbourne—met to form a breakaway competition and in 1897, the Victorian Football League (VFL), was born as an eight-team competition. Popularity of the VFL grew rapidly and by 1925 with 12 teams, had become the most prominent league in the game and would dominate so many aspects of the sport from that point on.
Moorabbin Football Club, nicknamed the Kangaroos, was the name of two distinct Australian rules football clubs which played in the Victorian Football Association (VFA). The first club, founded in the early 20th century, joined the VFA in 1951 and played there until 1963 with great success; they played home matches at Moorabbin Oval and wore royal blue and white hooped jerseys. The second club played in the VFA from 1983 to 1987.
Moorabbin played initially in the Federal Football League, making their debut in 1909 and competing until 1950. During this time the club won 12 premierships, including winning all six premierships staged over the nine years between 1940 and 1948 (the competition was in recess from 1942 until 1944).
The club entered the VFA in 1951. Its Federal League home ground, the Dane Road Reserve, was not up to VFA standards; so, in 1951 the club played at Cheltenham, and in 1952 moved into the Moorabbin Oval, which the Moorabbin Council had developed during 1951. The Kangaroos made the 1954 and 1955 finals series without success but in 1957 they helped eliminate premiership favourite Williamstown after defeating them by two points in the Semi Final. Moorabbin, who were coached by Bill Faul, took on Port Melbourne in the Grand Final, whom they had not once beaten since joining the league. In another upset, Moorabbin won comfortably to claim their maiden VFA premiership.
In the early 1960s, the Moorabbin Council was very keen to bring a Victorian Football League team to Moorabbin Oval. 1964, the Moorabbin City Council secured a deal with St Kilda, who moved to Moorabbin Oval starting in 1965. The club originally intended to seek readmission for the 1965 season, but in July the club committee decided to withdraw permanently from the Association,and disbanded.

Physical description

Photograph is Black and White. Three rows of Australian Rules Football players in a typical team photograph. Some are wearing striped jumpers, either the stripes are going horizontal or parallel. There is a known man in this photo, named Philip Jones, who is holding the football in front row. There are two men wearing suits at the left, on the end of the third row.

Inscriptions & markings

Hewitt, Photographer, 92 Regent St. North Richmond.