Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Random Cutting - Imps League Alarm (1930's)

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Change 'Irish' to West Indians or Indians or Pakistanis or Polish or Rumanians or Vietnamese or even Huguenots, and it’s the same old Right Wing bleating.
The Junior Imperial League was the forerunner of the Young Conservatives.

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Sir Winston Churchill Funeral Plans

Evening Standard dated Monday January 25th 1965
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Sir Winston Churchill, ex Conservative Prime Minister, ex Home Secretary, ex First Lord of the Admiralty, ex Secretary of State for War, ex Secretary of State for Air, ex Chancellor of the Exchequer, Nobel Prize winner, author, war correspondent, polo player, front line soldier, prisoner of war, speech maker, diplomat, artist, butterfly breeder and amateur bricklayer died on January 24th at the age of 90.  

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Churchill’s death was front-page news around the World.

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His state funeral was attended by representatives from 110 nations. US President Lyndon (LBJ) Johnson didn’t make it. David Ben-Gurion of Israel walked from the Savoy Hotel in the Strand. The Queen, Prince Philip, Charles, Princess Magaret and the Queen Mother attended, as did Prime Minister Harold Wilson and French Premier Charles De Gaulle.

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Born in Saint Lucia, Emile Ford came to Britain in the mid 1950’s and, along with his backing band The Checkmates, had a number 1 hit with ‘What Do You Want to Make Those Eyes at Me For?’ in 1959. He had 3 more top 20 hits but hasn’t reached number 1 again, yet.

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John Heenan became the Catholic Archbishop of Westminster on September 2nd 1963 and was created a Cardinal by Pope Paul VI February 2nd 1965. He died of a heart attack at the age of 70 in 1975.

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I can’t quite understand this item. Is it sloppy reading on my part or sloppy writing on their part? Was Mr Arcadius Skidelsky dead in 1965? If he gave her the jewels, when did he pawn them? Why use the word ‘boudoir’? Is it used to imply a relationship between the woman and the Mr Skidelsky? But surely his executors chose her. But wouldn’t they wait until he was dead before executing the Will? It wasn’t immediately obvious but presumably the word ‘Image’ in the headline refers to he resemblance to his late wife. I’ve had to read the item half a dozen times to come up with this drivel. Was it worth it? Who cares?

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Abram (Bram) Fischer had been a long time member of the Communist Party and supporter of Apartheid in South Africa. He was arrested in November 1965, and in March 1966 was put tried for promoting communism and conspiracy to overthrow the Government. He was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died in May 1975.
In December 2012 Bloemfontein Airport was renamed Bram Fischer International in his memory.

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Sounds like the record buying public had good sense, and an ear for music, when they put the Righteous Brothers’ unforgettable version of You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ at number 1 rather than the Cilla Black offering.

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As it turned out Terry Downes first fight with Willie Pastrano on November 30th 1964 turned out to be his last professional bout. Pastrano only had 1 more fight Рhe lost against Jos̩ Torres in March 1965.

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A full-page advert for the European Premiere of that perennial favourite ‘The Sound of Music’ to be held on March 29th. It had already been premiered in New York and Los Angeles and was nominated for 10 Oscars; winning 5.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Random Ad - Hell is a City (1960)

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A superb crime thriller, 'Hell is a City' starred Stanley Baker (who was in one of my all-time favourites 'Hell Drivers') and John Crawford (the obligatory American 'star'). Supringly it was made by Hammer Films who are, of course,  best known for horror flicks. It was partly filmed on the streets and buildings of Manchester.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Random Cutting - RADAR Secrets revealed (1945)

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The idea of Radar had been around since the late 19th Century and theorised by Nikola Tesla during World War 1, By 1934 it had become feasible to locate and calculate the range of an object using radio waves, but it wasn’t until World War II that it came into its own. 

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Valentino admirer's suicide

Evening Standard dated Thursday August 26th 1926
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Rudolph Valentino had died the previous Monday. See this post. Peggy Scott was variously described as an actress, dancer and scriptwriter but I can’t find anything online about her career. She had claimed to know Valentino but a representative of the late star attended Scott’s inquest and denied any connection between the two.

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Cont'd from page 1
After the General Strike of May 1926 the coalminers were no better off than before and continued their strike. By November it had fizzled out as workers at mine after mine were forced back to work as their Unions ran out of money. The tone of this article, especially the last ‘Down the Pit’ section is decidedly anti-miners and this may well reflect the opinion of the paper’s owner Lord Beaverbrook.

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Valentino’s body was laid out for public viewing in the Gold Room of Frank E Campbell’s Funeral Church in Manhattan, where others including Oscar Hammerstein and Enrico Caruso had also been displayed. The circus atmosphere that surrounded the lying-in-state, encouraged by the media presence, offended George Ullman and he stopped it after only 2 days. It turned out that the Fascist guards mentioned in the article were in fact a publicity stunt concocted by the Funeral Home’s management and that the wreath from Mussolini was bought in the Home’s own florists.

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Edward Creed had been the manager of a cheese shop and on the night of July 28th his assistant left him to put the day’s taking in the safe and to lock up the shop. Several hours later the next-door neighbour thought he could smell gas coming from the shop and he called the police. They found Mr Creed dead and the gas jets on but unlit. The safe had been cleared of money. Witnesses placed 2 men loitering near the shop on the day of the murder and the police published descriptions but no one was found. The two women mentioned in the article were never traced and a verdict of ‘murder by person or persons unknown’ was returned at the inquest. The case remains unsolved.

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Krishna Murti (or Jiddu Krishnamurti) was born in 1895 in India and at the age of 14 was taken under the wing of Charles Webster Leadbeater and Theosophical Society who groomed him to be the new World Teacher. After training and a European education he travelled the World lecturing on esotericism, or hidden knowledge or wisdom that offers the individual enlightenment and salvation. In 1929 he split from the Theosophical Society, but continued teaching until his death in 1986.

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Presumably Sarah Carlisle was under 21, because I believe that Thomas H Grater was 24, having been born, according to the FreeBMD website, in 1902, and if they had both been over 21 they wouldn’t have needed any parent’s permission. A further search at FreeBMD shows Thomas marrying in 1930 to a lady by the name of Broughton. Sarah Carlisle is too common a name to pin her down.

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I remember hearing these SOS messages at the end of news broadcasts and usually of the form ‘would so-and-so believed to be on holiday in the Lake District please contact their mother who is seriously ill’. They became redundant with the spread of mobile phones in 1990’s. 

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Yes you guessed it – it’s the drawing that made me post this, although a cold Barclay’s Lager would go down a treat today. It was brewed by Barclay Perkins of Southwark, not by a bunch of merchant bankers.

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The term ‘bandit’ seems to refer specifically to motorised smash and grab raiders. According to Robert Murphy’s very good book ‘Smash and Grab – Gangsters in the London Underworld’ the most famous girl bandit was Lilian Goldstein who drove for Ruby Sparks while they carried out numerous raids between 1922 and 1927.

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Quite what this fashionable young lady is doing with a coal-scuttle on her head is anyone’s guess, but then I know nothing about haute couture.

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Tunnels Bathing Beach was, and still is, a feature of Ilfracombe, North Devon. No helicopter rescues in those days. 

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I remember that when I was a kid it was common knowledge that stevedores at the London Docks, while unloading bananas from ships, were forever being attacked by tarantulas. There again it was common knowledge that if you trod on the cracks in the pavement the boogieman would get you.

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The famous songwriter Irving Berlin was a Russian-Jewish immigrant and Ellin Mackay was a Catholic heiress and daughter of the head of the Postal Telegraph Cable Company. Despite Mr Mackay’s objections, the couple were married at the New York City Hall on January 4th 1926 and he subsequently wrote her out of his will. It took another 5 years for father and daughter to be reconciled.

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Nicholas Zographos was one fifth of the infamous ‘Greek Syndicate’ of gamblers who were a fixture of the great European casinos of the inter-War period. A detailed article on the Syndicate can be found here. Zographos died in 1953.

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An example of the art being created for the London Underground in the 1920’s. Charles Paine, whose name adorns this advert, produced posters and advertising artwork for the LU from 1920 until 1929. He was born in 1895 and died in 1967.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Random Ad - Cafe au Lait (1917?)

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Coffee culture 1917 style. "Do yer want to supersize that, Love?"

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Random Cutting - Girl stabbed in TV studio (1961)

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Dennis Vance had been an actor and then, from 1952, a TV producer and director whose work included one-off plays, series like ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel’ and ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ (which starred Micky (Monkees) Dolenz’ father) and, in April 1961 an episode of ‘The Avengers’. Janice Willett had worked with Dennis and they had had a relationship but she broke it off. At his trial for the stabbing he was sentenced to 3 years probation and ordered to undergo psychiatric treatment. His career in television carried on right up to 1979. He died in 1983. For a detailed account of the incident and its consequences see this page of the amazingly comprehensive website ‘The Avengers Declassified’.
The damaged paragraph in the middle reads ' 'In the main studio a dress rehearsal for a programme called The Avengers was being held'.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Rommel Launches Big Blow at Americans

Sunday Graphic dated Sunday April 4th 1943
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Big blow or not, a couple of days later (April 6th) the Italians and German Afrikakorps were defeated at the Battle of Wadi Akarit and by May 13th the German and Italian forces in Tunisia surrendered to the Allies.
Erwin Rommel was well respected not only by his own men, but, surprisingly, by his counterparts in the British and American armies. In 1944 he was involved in a failed conspiracy to overthrow Hitler and was forced to choose between being tried, convicted and executed along with his family or committing suicide. He chose suicide and was buried as a Nazi hero.

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Benito Mussolini had been politically insecure since the war in North Africa had started to turn against the Axis powers in late 1942. Unrest at home with strikes, inflated food prices and an unwelcome German army presence along with the Allied invasion of Sicily in July 1943 led to the Dictator being ousted and arrested. Unfortunately this didn’t mean that the Allies could just walk in and take over. There was another year of bitter fighting before the Germans were cleared from the country. 

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No trains, no petrol for cars and no extra buses, but apart from that, have a good Easter Holiday!

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70,000 children cannot be traced! Why isn’t this front-page news? Are they really lost or just not in London anymore? Are the ones ‘drifting back’ part of the 70,000? Were they ever found? Are they still out there? What is this snippet really about?

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Maybe this is where the 70,000 lost children have gone – to Lord Woolton’s agricultural holiday camps.  Lord Woolton became the Minister for Food in 1940 and it was because of his management of food rationing that on the whole the British people all got a fair share of what food was available. He even had a pie named after him, though I doubt you’ll find one in Tesco’s these days.

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This was a common type of wartime news item; quoting increased production figures to boost moral; rather in the style of the USSR Agricultural 5 Year Plan updates that peppered Russian news in the Communist era. 

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‘Failure to comply’ to the Nurses and Midwives Order 1943 was ‘punishable by fine, imprisonment or both’ Civil liberties? You must be joking – we’re at war, Love.

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In 1940 the clocks in Britain were not put back by an hour at the end of Summer Time i.e. not reset to GMT. From then until 1945 clocks continued to be advanced by one hour each spring and put back by an hour each autumn, so for these summers Britain was two hours ahead of GMT and operating on British Double Summer Time. Note the reminder on the front page.

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After World War I, Sir Percy Robert Laurie KCVO CBE DSO had been a Deputy Assistant Commissioner and an Assistant Commissioner in the Metropolitan Police. He retired in 1936 but was recalled in 1939 to be Assistant Chief Constable of the War Department Constabulary and then the Provost-Marshal of the United Kingdom until this little problem got in the way. His conviction was later quashed on the basis that ‘he had simply made a mistake’.

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King Feisal (or Faisal) II of Irak (or Iraq) succeeded his father just a month shy of his 4th birthday. He was murdered during a coup in 1958.

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Orson Welles' ‘Citizen Kane’ has been long regarded as the best film ever made by those that should know, so it is interesting to see it referred to, along with his second film ‘The Magnificent Embersons’ (sic), as ‘badly received by the British public’.
Johnny Weissmuller (as Tarzan) and Maureen O’Sullivan (as Jane) had made 6 movies for MGM, but when this Tarzan-meets-the-Nazis propaganda flick was made at RKO Maureen bowed out. In the plot Jane is on holiday! She never returned to the jungle. Johnny did 5 more Tarzans plus 13 Jungle Jim films and a TV series.
‘Colonel Blimp’ has a well deserved reputation as a clever satire.  

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Scientists and MPs plan Britain’s post-War future based entirely on the ‘inexhaustible supplies’ of coal – oops! At least they correctly predicted the ‘electrification of the railways’.

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There must be hundreds of authors who were household names in their day, but who are now all but forgotten. Rex Beach was an American novelist, playwright and Olympic silver medallist water-polo player (1904 St Louis) who spent 5 years in Alaska during the Klondike Gold Rush and wrote several very popular novels in the Jack London idiom. His second, ‘The Spoilers’, was filmed 5 times. After the death of his wife he committed suicide in 1949.

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A lot of the older papers (1920’s-1930’s) I have blogged have had episodes of fiction serials in them, which I haven’t posted because 1 day’s excerpt of a story would be pointless, however this paper has this complete short story written by Wing-Commander (later Group Captain) Leonard Cheshire who went on to win the Victoria Cross in 1944. See this post for more on Leonard Cheshire.