Fred Beardsworth

A halfback who starred for teams in New England and New York after emigrating from England in 1914.

Beardsworth, who had played in regional leagues in England, joined the New Bedford Whalers of the Southern New England League immediately after arriving in America. He then played three years for that team before moving in late 1917 to the Whalers’ greatest rival, Fall River Rovers, about 40 miles away. The Rovers had won the U.S. Open Cup (then called the National Challege Cup) in 1917, and they reached the final again in 1918, Beardworth’s only season with them, losing the final to Bethlehem Steel.

Still looking to win some American silverware, Bearsworth moved before the the 1918-19 season to a new team and a new league, Robins Dry Dock of Brooklyn in the National Association Foot Ball League. In the league, he was again stymied by Bethlehem Steel, which won the NAFBL in 1919, 1920 and 1920, but Robins had much more success in cup competition. It won the American Football Association Cup in 1920, beating Bethelhem in the final, and in 1921, it won both the AFA Cup and the U.S. Open Cup. Robins’ victim in the AFA Cup final was Fore River Shipyard of Quincy, Mass., and in the U.S. Open Cup final it was Scullian Steel of St. Louis. Beardsworth’s teammates on those Robins teams included fellow future Hall of Famers Pete Renzulli, Harry Ratican and Bob Millar.

After retiring from major competition in 1921, Beardsworth returned to New Bedford, where he played in local teams and taught at the New Bedford Textile School.

Inducted in 1965.