Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sepia Saturday #173: Just plain odd inspiration brings me to 'legs'.

The inspiration for Sepia Saturday #173 was definitely a head scratcher for me. If you take a look at the Sepia Saturday page you will see a young man pictured, proudly showing off birds of some kind, both of which have been plucked and prepped, presumably for consumption. Since I have no family members who ever posed with any beings of the fowl persuasion, at least none within the age of photography, my interpretation of this image fits the inspiration as Alan described it, and is just plain odd.

The theme for my Sepia Saturday is legs, because it is those appendages which first caught my eye in the inspiration image. Be sure to visit Alan and Kat's blog to see how the image of the boy and the birds  has inspired others, and perhaps you will be inspired too.

Legs kitted out in military garb.
For years my mom had this half of an image in a photo album. My mother knew one pair of the legs belonged to one of her brothers. When we were clearing out Mom's home after she died, I discovered the upper half of the image in the bottom of a box. The photo was taken c.1945 in India. The legs on the left belong to my mother's brother Patrick, the ones on the right to a Private S. Lewis. The inscription typed on the back of the whole photo joined together reads:
Pte P.J. Ball 
A.T.T.C. 
Mauripur, India 
Pte S. Lewis

The upper half of the 'legs' photo.
This photograph has taken me on yet another search to uncover the complete history of the service of my Uncle Patrick, and his brother, my Uncle Anthony, in the British Forces. Both men were stationed in India during World War II and afterward. To be Irish and serving with the British Forces in this period was highly controversial, since the government of Ireland did not officially acknowledge World War II as a war, but termed it 'The Emergency', and declared Ireland as officially neutral. Formerly restricted documents which have been released in recent years show that, behind the scenes, Ireland was working with the Allies.

On a much lighter note: My maternal Uncle Gerard on a skiff sailing in Dublin Harbour near Ringsend.
With legs up, he looks as though he's having a lot of fun.
Uncle Gerry was not only a sailing enthusiast, but a very talented boat builder,
who crafted wood yachts with his closest friend Eddie Fitzgerald.
The lightest note of all: Unfortunately a blurry image,
but you can't miss the lovely legs of my maternal Auntie Kay,
photographed at the seaside on Ireland's Eye, Howth, County Dublin.
Copyright©irisheyesjg2013.

18 comments:

  1. Interesting your uncle was in the Australian Army Troop Company. I wonder where he enlisted? It may be illegal for the British Army to recruit in Eire now, but I believe the Irish Guards have many from Eire.
    Please remember to read my blog next week. I am writing it at present and there is something that will certainly be of interest to you from 1916.

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    Replies
    1. Hello Nigel,

      Thanks for your comments. As an historian who specializes in the history of early 20th century conflict in Ireland, I am interested in seeing what you have about 1916.

      Since Éire and the UK are no longer legally linked, as stated in Chapter 12, Part XII, 312, (1)(a) of the Defence Act of Ireland, it is illegal for Britain, as it is for any other foreign state, to recruit in Éire. Under the law that would be like China trying to recruit in Éire. However, since the State of Northern Ireland is still part of the UK, the Irish Guards do recruit from there.

      As for Patrick Ball, he enlisted in Liverpool, England, so the path of his journey should prove an interesting one to uncover.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  2. As an Irish born Canadian I am intrigued by your blog and will be following you!

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    Replies
    1. Hello Jackie,

      Thanks for your comment, and welcome!

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  3. I'm glad you found the top half of the photo because I thought the one on the right was a girl. I guess I didn't pay enough attention to the shoes. Your aunt had legs well worth showing off.

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    1. Hi Wendy,

      Thanks very much for your comments. They made me smile. I'm glad I found it too. I wonder if my mom even realized she had it. That is quite a pair of legs on Pte Lewis, so I can certainly see what you mean, and those shorts on himself look like a 'skort'. As for my auntie, she just turned 80, still looks great, and walks a lot, so those great legs are probably still great.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  4. Seem to remember my Granddad was in the Irish Guards but I think we are talking early 20centry. I need to check the photo.

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    1. Hello Bill,

      Thanks for your comments. Always much appreciated. Just a word on the Irish Guards and the Defence Act. Éire did not become the Republic until 1949 and the full Act of Defence was not legislated until 1954, so strictly speaking it would not have been illegal for Britain to recruit until that time.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  5. I thought the legs on the right belonged to a girl too. Those big pleated shorts lead us astray. A fine collection of legs all round!

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    1. Hello Kathy,

      Thanks for your comments. He does have a great pair of gams doesn't he? I don't know how they survived the heat in those clothes, and those woollen socks, yikes.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  6. A right old knees-up, as they say. Charming photographs, and fortunate that you solved the Mystery of the Missing Torsos.

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    Replies
    1. Hello Brett,

      Thanks for your comments. They are much appreciated. I am happy to have solved the Mystery of the Missing Torsos.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  7. A couple of years ago we used to have Sepia Saturday themes that were words ("boat", "hat" or the like)but I much prefer image prompts as they allow so much more individuality and invention. You finish up with posts that lead you off in so many fascinating directions and your post is a perfect example of this.

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    1. Hello Alan,

      Thanks for your comments, and thank you so much to you and everyone over at Sepia Saturday for the inspiration prompts. I really enjoy putting together these posts. They take me off in a totally different direction and sometimes help with my work as an historian because they get me thinking about different perspectives.

      Cheers to you,
      Jennifer

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  8. What good fortune that you found the other half of the photograph. The difference in the half that has not seen the light of day often is obvious. Have you tried reassembling this and restoring it in photoshop?

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    1. Hello anyjazz,

      Thanks for your comments. Yes! Good fortune indeed. It is interesting to note how images change depending on environment. It didn't help that the lower half was stored in plastic. I have put the image back together and restored it, but used these versions to fit the theme of the post.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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  9. Yes, the torn photos were much more dramatic and in keeping with Sepia Saturday. I also thought the person on the right was a woman.
    Thanks so much for the wonderful history lesson about Ireland. I didn't know any of those recruitment laws. Very interesting.
    Nancy

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    1. Hello Nancy,

      Thanks for your lovely comments; they are much appreciated. I'm glad to be able to share information about the history of Ireland. I find the recruitment laws especially interesting. They speak to the fact of Ireland at that time as a newly established political entity formulating who they are and what they stand for.

      Cheers,
      Jennifer

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