Robert Baldwin Calder was born on January 2, 1907, in Glasgow, Scotland. After playing in schoolboy soccer in Scotland he emigrated at the age of 18 to Canada.
Bob arrived in Toronto in May 1925. In Toronto he joined the Bell Telephone soccer club. In July 1927 he was picked on the Ontario All Star that played against the touring Austrian club Hakoah Wien. Playing at fullback, Bob helped the All Stars to a 2-2 draw against the Jewish team on Saturday July 2 in Toronto. The following Saturday he played with the All Stars against the Scottish International XI that was undertaking an extensive tour in Canada. The Ontario All Stars suffered a severe hammering by losing 10-0 in front of 9,000 soccer fans at Varsity Stadium. Before the start of the 1928 National Soccer League season Bob joined Toronto Scottish.
In April 1929 he joined Montreal Carsteel. He missed the start of the 1929 National Soccer League season, but quickly established himself as a first-choice fullback for the Carsteel team. Much thanks to the tutoring by teammate and former England international Sam Chedgzoy he developed into one of the finest backs in Canada. He was known for his fine play and also for his sporting tactics. In October 1932 Carsteel manager Duncan Cameron received an offer from Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers for Bob.
On Friday November 4, 1932, Bob sailed from Montreal on the Letitia to Scotland. He arrived in Glasgow on Monday November 14. He immediately went to Ibrox to take part in his first training with Rangers. His first appearance in a match was with the Rangers “A” team against Queen’s Park Strollers in an Alliance League game. His first two matches for the Rangers “A” team was played under muddy conditions that did not favour Bobby.
His senior debut came in a second round Scottish Cup game against Queen’s Park on February 13, 1933. The match was a replay after the two teams had played to a tie in the first game. Bob played at right back, with another Canadian great Whitey McDonald playing at left back. A crowd of 42,000 turned up at Hampden Park in Glasgow to watch the two teams play to another tie. Bob failed to establish himself in the Rangers’ first team and was released after the 1932-33 season.
The 5-11 and 13 stone right-back signed for Third Division South club Cardiff City in August 1933. He played in 37 league games. However, the club was forced to apply for re-election to the league after the season. In January 1935 Bradford City manager Jack Pearl signed him to a contract. Then followed a one-month trial with Southend United in February 1935.
In August 1935 he was given a try out with Newport County. After impressing in trial games he was signed to a contract on August 29. Bob played in 14 league games for Newport County in the Third Division South during the 1935-36 season.
In July 1936 Bob signed for Barrow and played in seven league games in the Football League Third Division North. On August 16, 1937, he signed for Clapton Orient. Then followed a spell with Milford United.
Robert Calder passed away in Daventry, England, in 1973.