WW1 photos

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Orlaith17
Posts: 138
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:50 pm

WW1 photos

Post by Orlaith17 » Fri Apr 15, 2016 10:16 am

I have photos of my grandmother as a young woman during WW1. They were taken in a photo studio. One is with her husband in his Black Watch uniform. The other is with a soldier I didn't recognise. It wasn't her husband or any of her brothers. My mother told me it was actually a female friend of hers. She seemed to think that women sometimes did dress up as soldiers to have pics taken with female friends. When you look close, you can see it does look more like a female. The uniform looks like one that would be worn by a man. I think it's unlikely she was actually a serving soldier. Can anyone shed any light on this please? Anyone know of any customs of women dressing up as soldiers for photos? Or would anyone be able to identify the uniform and confirm if she was an actual soldier if I posted the photo?

Currie
Posts: 3709
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:20 am
Location: Australia

Re: WW1 photos

Post by Currie » Fri Apr 15, 2016 11:28 am

Hello Orlaith,

I've seen a picture somewhere of a woman dressed in her husband's officer WW1 uniform. Maybe this one: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 35047.html

Here's another one, also a Kiwi, but it turned out to be theatrical.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/ne ... -to-a-face

This one was a bit more serious, again antipodean. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-04/w ... ip/5687202

If the uniform is full length, including trousers and puttees, and definitely should be on a man, the apparent hair length is the likeliest giveaway.

You could post the picture, maybe the uniform will be identifiable.

Alan

Currie
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Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:20 am
Location: Australia

Re: WW1 photos

Post by Currie » Fri Apr 15, 2016 12:09 pm

Not a good idea in Public.

The Nottingham Evening Post, Monday, May 22, 1916
Report to the effect that a woman was fined for wearing a relatives full Royal Engineers uniform in public.


Daily Mail (Hull, England), Thursday, February 01, 1917
WOMAN SWAGGERING AS PRIVATE.
When Emily Crawley, 26, a milliner, and Harold Rider, a private in the Northants Regiment, were brought up at Hampstead on Wednesday, P.C. Henderson said that at four o'clock the previous afternoon he saw the woman, attired in the uniform of a private of the Northants Regiment, swaggering along Southend-road, and when he stopped her she said, "I have swopped clothes with my Jack so that he can get out of the Army."
The witness took her to the police-station, and shortly afterwards Rider walked in with the woman's clothes over his arm, and asked the witness whether he had seen a woman wearing his uniform.
The soldier told the Bench that the woman asked him if he would allow her to have her photograph taken in his uniform. He agreed, and she went off with the uniform and did not return.
The prisoners were each fined 40s or one month's imprisonment. The woman, who had laughed heartily several times during the hearing of the case, remarked, "Good-bye all," as she left the dock.


Alan

garibaldired
Posts: 582
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2005 2:42 pm
Location: Dorset, UK

Re: WW1 photos

Post by garibaldired » Fri Apr 15, 2016 4:18 pm

:lol: :lol:

Love it!

Best wishes,
Meg

Orlaith17
Posts: 138
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: WW1 photos

Post by Orlaith17 » Fri Apr 15, 2016 8:22 pm

CatherineScanlan_Soldier_1.jpg
CatherineScanlan_Soldier_1.jpg (65.87 KiB) Viewed 1274 times
Here is the photo I mentioned. Hoping someone might be able to confirm or otherwise that this is as we have been told, a lady dressed in the soldier's uniform. The lady seated is my grandmother.

Currie
Posts: 3709
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:20 am
Location: Australia

Re: WW1 photos

Post by Currie » Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:22 am

Hello Orlaith,

The cap badge looks like Royal Artillery to me. The bandolier over the shoulder usually means a mounted soldier. The rank would probably be Driver, controlling a pair of horses in a gun team. That usually means spurs as well. The picture around the feet is shadowy, I can't see the glint of metal but maybe there's a suggestion of the strap around the front of the boot? There's something on both sleeves which could be a lance corporal's (lance bombadier) stripe, but maybe they are just marks on the photo? I can't see a lanyard, or any shoulder titles. http://www.photodetective.co.uk/RArtillery.html

The persons features look quite fine, not sure whether that's feminine or boyish. The uniform seems to fit, more or less, except for the collar which seems to be much too large. Maybe there's a suggestion of long hair above the ears? Definitely need more opinions on this.

The riding crop or swagger stick probably doesn't signify anything in particular, could even be a photographers prop. I've seen other photos of soldiers wearing similar looking wrist watches, not protected by cases.

Here's a good photo. http://i.ebayimg.com/images/i/400739904 ... -l1000.jpg

Not an expert,
Alan

Orlaith17
Posts: 138
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: WW1 photos

Post by Orlaith17 » Sat Apr 16, 2016 1:19 pm

Thanks, everyone. I remember the name of the woman who gave my mother this photo to pass to my father. I think (hope) I have managed to trace and message a relative of hers through Geni. If she responds to my message, I'll send her the photo to see if she can confirm anything. I just wondered if it was a regular thing for women to dress up in uniform just for photos. Or if this may actually have been a female serving soldier.

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