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Charlie Stewart

Career : 1901
Debut : Round 5, 1901 vs St Kilda, aged 20 years, 317 days
Carlton Player No. 108
Games : 3
Goals : 1
Last Game : Round 11, 1901 vs South Melbourne, aged 20 years, 359 days
Height : 165 cm. (5 ft. 5 in.)
Weight : 60 kg. (9 stone, 4 lbs.)
DOB : 12 July, 1880


Stewart was a small, lively forward who came to Carlton from amateur side Essendon District in 1901. He kicked a goal on debut for the Blues, but only managed two more games in his only VFL season. Fifteen years later, he was awarded a Military Medal for bravery in action in World War 1.

In the early years of the Victorian Football League, long before high-marking became a hallmark of our game, full-forwards were often quite small men who relied on their pace and guile to get the ball. They were invariably accurate place-kicks for goal, and ranged far and wide to get possession. At just 165 cm and 60 kg, Charlie Stewart was a typical goal-sneak of his era.

When Charlie arrived at Princes Park in Carlton’s fifth VFL season, he joined a team that had struggled to compete from day one of the new competition. Only St Kilda had finished below us each year from 1897 to 1900, and by circumstance it was the Saints who played the Blues at Princes Park in Charlie’s debut game.

Carlton won comfortably after Stewart steered through his first and only career goal, but then he was left out of the team until round 9, when Collingwood inflicted a four-goal defeat on the Blues at Princes Park. A fortnight later, Charlie played his third and last senior match at the Lake Oval, in an embarrassing 50-point hiding by South Melbourne.

That loss ended Stewart’s elite-level football career, and he faded into the anonymity of every day life - until 1915, when he signed up for military service in World War 1. At the age of 34, Charlie underwent his baptism of fire in the last weeks of the Gallipoli campaign, before being sent into the stalemate of trench warfare in northern France.

In March 1918, acting Sergeant Stewart was awarded a Military Medal for conspicuous bravery in the field – the sixth such award won by a Carlton player. Eight months later the war ended at last, and Charlie and his mates looked forward to getting home.

For some years after that bloody conflict, Charlie lived on Marine Parade, St Kilda (the suburb of his birth) and worked as a public servant. He passed away in August, 1957, aged 77.

Blueseum: Summary of playing statistics for Charlie Stewart | Stewart's Blueseum Image Gallery

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