Another near miss
Charlie bolsters the defence
Charlie Walker was the marquee signing going into the 1936/37 campaign to partner the established Charlie Bicknell at the heart of the Hammers’ defence.
The move for the former Arsenal player was financed by the £1,000 received from Millwall for David Mangnall. The defence was further bolstered with goalkeeper Arthur Weare, while other recruits included Fred Dell, Norman Corbett, Sam Small and Tudor Martin.
West Ham began their promotion pursuit by beating Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at home on the opening day, but promptly lost the next three games. One of these was a remarkable game at Newcastle United where Hammers debutant Tudor Martin scored a hat-trick in a 5-3 defeat.
Martin scored seven goals in eleven games and was then sold to Southend United.
There was no flirting with promotion this season, although the Hammers finished in storming fashion, conceding only three goals in the last nine games, but this gallant effort by Charlie Paynter's men went unrewarded as they finished in sixth place in the table.
Scotland international inside forward Dr. James Marshall was born in Avonbridge, Falkirk on 3 January 1908 and started his junior football career with Shettleston before joining Glasgow Rangers in 1925, aged 17.
Marshall was a qualified doctor, having gained his medical degree in October 1933, hence his nickname Doc.
The medical practitioner had nine successful seasons at Ibrox, making 257 appearances for the ‘Gers, scoring 138 goals and amassing a cabinet full of medals and three Scottish caps before he moved south to take up a medical appointment in London.
Dr Marshall joined Arsenal in July 1934, but his stay was brief, as he recorded just four starts for the Gunners.
On 13 March 1935, he signed for West Ham for £5,000, and three days later he made his debut at Port Vale in a 2-2 draw.
In 1936, Dr Marshall was depicted on a cigarette card No.1 by Godfrey Phillips Ltd entitled Soccer Stars, while he also appeared as No.6 on a much rarer Football Stars 1936 offering by Quess.
In three seasons at the Boleyn Ground, he scored 13 goals in 59 appearances.
Dr Marshall retired from playing at the relatively early age of 29 to work for Bermondsey Borough Council. He passed away in December 1977, aged 69.
Football League Division Two
Final Position: Sixth
W19, D11, L12, F73, A55, Pts 49
Leading goalscorer: Len Goulden (15)
Average Home League Attendance: 20,704