Queen of the South Football Club was established in 1919. This new club was result of a union between three pre-existing clubs: Maxwelltown Volunteers FC (formed in 1896 and renamed 5th King’s Own Scottish Borderers in 1908), Dumfries FC (formed in 1897) and the Arrol-Johnston Motor Company works team. The name, ‘Queen of the South’, was taken from a local poet, David Dunbar, who, while standing for Parliament in the 1857 general election, called the town of Dumfries the ‘Queen of the South’ in one of his addresses.
After participating in various non-professional leagues for several seasons, ‘the Doonhamers’, as they are known (‘doonhamer’ being a colloquial term for natives of Dumfries, many of whom, in the nineteenth century, worked in Glasgow and referred to Dumfries as doon hame, Scots for ‘down home’), joined the newly-created Third Division of the Scottish Football League in the 1923/24 season.
The Doonhamers gained promotion from the bottom tier after their second season in the SFL. Promotion to the top tier came at the close of the 1932/33 season. In their first season in the top tier, Queen of the South finished fourth in the table with 45 points, behind Celtic (47), Motherwell (62) and Rangers (66). This finish remains the club’s finest performance in the top tier.
Although the Doonhamers have yet to win any senior cups, they reached the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup in 1949/50 and the Scottish League Cup in 1950/51 and 1960/61. In 2007/08, the club reached the Scottish Cup final, losing narrowly 2-3 to Rangers.
Queen of the South first featured a badge on their kit in 1947. This badge, found at the centre of the current badge, is strong, bearing a handsome monogram and the Dumfries motto, in Scots, A lore burne, referring to the Loreburn (or ‘muddy stream’), a stream that ran through a marsh near the town. In times of attack, this motto served as a rallying cry to the town. What I find less attractive in the current badge is the outer circle, bearing the club’s name and leaving a lot of negative space. Additionally, the current badge’s use of text within a shield is a violation of an ancient Scottish heraldic law.
When redesigning the Queen of the South badge, I struggled to come up with something that I found satisfying. I explored various heraldic motifs before settling on an updated ‘QS’ monogram bearing a ‘queen’s’ crown and featuring a football and the Dumfries motto in a banner.
The kits make use of the Doonhamers’ traditional colours of blue (home) and red (away). The home strip is inspired in part by Bayern Munich’s handsome third kit from the 2013/14 season.
As ever, I am indebted to Dave at Historical Football Kits for some of the historical information used above.