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Lt. General Sir J.G. Wolseley, General Officer Commanding
Mac and Shad (Isandula Collection)
The Battlefields of Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift
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 Searching through the dust of time

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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:49 am

"You will note that there are two Kroomen in the photograph; three Royal Engineers; two Royal Marine Light Infantry and ten Ratings from at least three ships."

And slightly out of sight in the Pear tree is a partridge.....  Very Happy 

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 11:22 am

springbok..name that gentleman..
looks to me like i have seen that
face many times! Coghill or even
Bromhead. damn i know that face.
great clean L.H. xhosa
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barry

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 12:30 pm

Hi John,
Nice pictures. Timing- maybe.
It is clearly a summer time shot to me, judging from water levels in the river, general growth, mud and all the perishables under tarpaulins.
What date is on record for completion of the pontoon bridge?

regards,

barry
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 12:57 pm

It is indeed Coghill.

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:09 pm

Steve,

The bottom one is the style that they were using circa 1879.

John Y.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:48 pm

Barry,

What's your take on this image then?

This by another photographer, James Lloyd, well-known for his iSandlwana images taken during the May 1879 visit.

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Original Caption: River Tugela.
John Young Collection.

Taken from almost the same point as Ben Kisch's photograph, this one has more stores in the photograph.

I know that Lloyd took photographs in this area in late March 1879 during the build-up to the Relief of Eshowe.  I'll find one and post it,

There were two obvious photographs taken in late 1878 in the area, but they both relate to the Ultimatum.

Regarding the pontoon bridge, this from the Narrative of Field Operations... (page 87):
'...After much delay, caused by the difficulty of transporting the materials from Durban, a pontoon bridge across the Tugela was completed on the 7th May 1879, and on the 11th June this was replaced by a semi-permanent trestle and pontoon bridge...'

Springy,

And slightly out of sight in the wild fig tree is a partridge, get it right!  Merry Christmas 

John Y.


Last edited by John Young on Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:28 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Mis-spelling of pontoon! JY)
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barry

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:04 pm

Hi JohnY,
Thanks for posting another splendid sepia shot, which if enlarged provides a lot of information.
Perhaps you can confirm that the pontoon bridge is there in that shot but hidden by foliage and the headland. If so, we know what the date of the scene must be.

regards

barry
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:27 pm

Barry,

The Lloyd photograph in my opinion pre-dates the Kisch image. The Kisch one has the trestle-bridge on the sandbar, so we can say it is at least after 11th June 1879. Whereas although there is something on that sandbar it isn't as defined in the Lloyd photograph. The clump of foliage to the right of the standing horses where the track descends to is the Ultimatum Tree.

If that is the pontoon bridge to the right of that it doesn't appear to be completed.

John Y.
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barry

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:40 pm

Hi JohnY,
Concur, I could not see the bridge over the sand bar. This one predates those pics  showing the bridge half completed or completed.
What I do see however is that it was taken in the wet season, ie probably  Nov-Mar, 1878/79, ie  things  look soggy and ground wet and compacted, foliage is still erect and alive. There are ammunition boxes ( +- 35 x 200 x 700 rds (500k)) under a tarp between the tents and large crates ,probably for MH's, also there.
There are stacks of mielies in the middle background  ( fodder  supplement for horses). High angle of repose in the stack suggest that,  and biscuit boxes ( a la Rd) in the foreground with large oak cask, probably for water. There are two piccanins  in the  crude lean-to at the mealie stack mid picture.
The Naval Brigade would have had their daily issue of rum there too, but probably stored in a smaller hogshead ( pity POT was not here to comment on that). There is a tall  metal triangular cooking stand there probably used for hanging the traditional three legged cast iron "missionary" cooking pots on.
The tide is out, hence the mud banks in the river in mid foreground. I seem to remember from my LF days in that area that the Tugela  estuary is tidal up to about that  spot where the old bridge was.
Thanks for posting JohnY, a nice insight into real history.

regards

barry


Last edited by barry on Sat Mar 08, 2014 12:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Scotch cart   Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:57 am

Hi All,
For those members wondering what a scotch cart looked like there is one to be seen mid picture in Springbok9's picture of the "Lower Tugela crossing" . It is loaded with mielie bags.

barry
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Sat Mar 08, 2014 7:25 pm

Some nice photos there John!
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:30 am

On the 27th January Frere wrote to Hicks Beech following up on his basic telegram giving the news of Isandlwana.
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Interesting letter in the number of points it touches.

This letter incidentally had a tag to it that reads: " Not for distribution."

Cheers
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90th

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PostSubject: Searching through the dust of time   Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:10 am

Hi Springu.
Thanks mate for posting the Letter , much appreciated .
Cheers 90th  agree 
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:11 pm

Barry,

Here's one I've been looking for to illustrate the crossing in late March/early April 1879.  This one was taken during the build-up for the Relief of Eshowe.

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Crossing the Tugela by pont.
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Springy,

This one's a variation on the photograph of the Zulu dead at Gingindlovu that you posted previously.

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Zulu Dead, Gingindlovu.
John Young Collection.

James Lloyd photograph.

John Y.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:51 pm

Thanks JY great photo! ' the view across
the river ' is absolutely stunning.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 3:53 am

HI JohnY,
Thanks for another nice picture of the crossing, which depicts the first or second early morning  ferry  of the day.
British army type wagons are depicted here, and one Boer type, which is probably that of a transport rider.
The famous tree is center foreground.
I see three large sheds on the  north shore as well as many bells tents spread over a large area, ie not just around Fort Tenedos which would be to the left of the scene.

regards,

barry
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90th

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PostSubject: Searching through the dust of time    Thu Mar 13, 2014 5:47 am

Hi JY.
Thanks for sharing that wonderfully clear photo , much appreciated .  Salute 
Cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 6:47 am

Hi John
I mentioned another photo on a different topic, its a reverse angle shot looking from downstream of the pont bridge up towards the ponts. I spotted it in Barthorps book, page 97 if you have it.
I haven't been to that area for quite a few years, been through and past but not to, are there any remaining signs of Smiths house? Or the Victoria Hospital location ?

Those photos of the Gingindlovu dead really do bring home the horrors of it all.

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:09 am

Frere started to come under pressure from Hicks Beech, this is the first attempt from him to defend his actions.
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:32 am

A photograph for almost every occasion.

The author & the recipient.

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Sir Henry Bartle Edward Frere & Sir Michael Hicks Beach (later Earl St. Aldwyn).
John Young Collection

John Y.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:40 am

Well done John. For 'almost' any occasion. Tut tut,  Very Happy 
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:57 am

Springy,

I lost the ones taken by the Zulu photographer during the Battle of iSandlwana!  Joker 

Although I do have a photographer of him...

John Y.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:05 am

Tisk, clumsy bugger.  Joker 

Bet you haven't got a Cetshwayo selfie then?????

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90th

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PostSubject: Searching through the dust of time    Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:12 am

I have a couple ! LOL.
Cheers 90th  Salute 
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:16 am

Springy,

Funny you should mention that I have this engraving sketched at the time of his capture, where as you can see King Cetshwayo has just dropped his I-phone and Major Marter is trying to grab it before it gets lost!

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The Capture of King Cetshwayo, Pictorial World 4th October 1879 edition.
John Young Collection

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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:19 am

A question I need to clarify.

The documents Im posting from Frere to Hicks Beech are indeed originals, to a point. They are original copies. in the 1800s carbon paper had not been invented so all outgoing documents were copied by the clerks before sending. These are then filed. Incoming documents are original and their copies are filed at source. So the letters from Frere et al are copies of the time but the letters from Hicks Beech are originals.


Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:21 am

Thanks Frank for the interesting clarification.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:36 am

John
Life hasn't changed then in RSA, people are still trying to grab your I phones 9 My wife's was subjected to Affirmative shopping last week ".
 Suspect 
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PostSubject: Searching through the dust of time    Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:48 am

No  Great !  Rolling Eyes
90th  Don\'t agree 
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:27 am

I have the latest model

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Cool huh?
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:05 am

The first notification from South Africa to London. Frere to Hicks Beach 7th July. At this stage the information was unofficial, Wolseley had imposed a news blackout and he was still trying to get to the front so Frere quotes as his source Archibald Forbes.
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Cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:32 am

This was dug out of the archives with a simple title of: "Soldier Nesbitt served in the Zulu War".
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I have an Idea who it could be but would love to see if anyone can come up with an answer.

Cheers


Last edited by springbok9 on Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:11 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:41 am

springbok9 wrote:
This was dug out of the archives with a simple title of: "Soldier Nesbit served in the Zulu War".
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I have an Idea who it could be but would love to see if anyone can come up with an answer.

Cheers

I don't know who this man is, but he looks like to Trooper Mossop.
Cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:50 am

Looks M.I. but with whom. Browne, Wood!?.
uniform, brown cord jkt, riding breeches,
spurs, S.H. Carbine.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:02 pm

Not MI - they were dressed differently.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 9:41 pm

soz, of course,frock! what about the trailing pug?.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:19 pm

There is an R H Nesbitt of the Basutoland Police awarded the Zulu War Medal for action against the Griquas in 1878 and the Zulus in 1879.

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 10:06 am

Theres also 'Nesbitts Horse' !
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 10:50 am

Major R. A. Nesbitt, Nesbitt’s Light Horse.

He was at some stage of his career in the Frontier Armed and Mounted Police and The Cape Mounted Riflemen (1861-79).

His fourth son, Randolph Cosby Nesbitt was born at Queenstown, Cape, on the 20th September 1867. Captain R. C. Nesbitt was awarded the Victoria Cross for his gallantry on the 19th June 1896.

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John Y.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 10:57 am

Lt Colonel RA Nesbitt I believe

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:28 am

John
Do you know the dates of the photos of Frere and Hicks Beach at all? I have one very similar to the Hicks Beach one dated 1876.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:18 pm

Some time back a question was posed as to why Bromhead never wrote an account of the battle for Rorke’s Drift.
Chard as senior officer did submit a report in early February 1879 and a fuller more descriptive account at the instigation of Queen Victoria. These are a matter of public record.
In a letter to Lady Alison from Wolfs Hill dated 16th May, Major CF Clery had the following to say about Bromhead: ‘When I told him he should send me an official report on the affair it seemed to have a most distressing effect on him. I used to find him hiding away in corners with a friend helping him to complete this account, and the only thing afterwards helped to lessen the compassion I felt for this, was my own labour when perusing this composition – to understand what it was all about.’
So it’s apparent from there that there was indeed a report made by Lt Bromhead.
The question is now what that report actually was?
This report was sent to Col Glyn as Officer Commanding and dated the 15th February.
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This report concerns the conduct of individual soldiers and lacks any battle description, so much so that it seems to be a follow up to a previous one. As this one is dated some two weeks after Chards report it could be argued that it is a follow up to that particular one. However Chard was an Engineer not a member of the 24th, it is my opinion that a regimental report would have been required and I believe that this would be the report that Clery refers to.
That would then potentially point towards two separate reports being produced, or would have if the following document wasn’t found in one of my Cape Archive searches.

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This is an enclosure list to a letter from Frere to Hicks Beach on the 24th January, item No2 is the interesting one. It is a copy of a letter from Lt Bromhead to Officer Commanding Helpmakaar. It predates the report of the 15th, and examining the Clery has to say it appears that he had to push to get the report he had requested, so hardly a report that would have been produced on the 23rd January in order to get it to PMB on the 24th.
We are therefore potentially looking at a third report.
The Frere letter, I have a copy, concerns the debacle of iSandlwana and the defence of Rorke’s Drift. The bad news of one and the Good news of the other. The original of that letter is in the Gloucester Archives but unfortunately the enclosure is not with it.
So into the realms of speculation.
Chelmsford was at Rorke’s Drift for that period; did he recognise quite early on that he needed to soften the blow of iSandlwana by the heroism of Rorke’s Drift? We do know for instance that he called some of the men to chat, Hook with his braces hanging down etc.
Could he have pushed Bromhead to sit down with say, Crealock to produce a glowing tribute?

A bit of incompleted research I know but it seems the first Bromhead report is beyond my search capabilities. If anyone else would like to pick ujp the ball and run with it then be my guest.

Cheers and a Happy Easter to all
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:43 pm

A few more Nesbitts
Lt. Colonel Nesbitt Richard Athole 04/02/1900
Captain Nesbitt Charles W. 08/02/1900
Captain & Adjt. Nesbitt Noel 01/02/1900
Corporal Nesbitt C.E. 27/02/1901
Tpr. Nesbitt W.W. 07/12/1900

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 1:38 pm

Julian,

Both published in the 1876 edition of Men of Mark, published by Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington, London.

The photographers were Lock & Whitfield and the process used was the Woodburytype. The same publishers and photographic process was used for MacKinnon & Shadbolt's South African Campaign of 1879.

John Y.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:10 pm

Right, same one for Hicks Beach as I have. I must therefore have the Frere one somewhere - I'll go and search in the loft!
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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:43 am

A few more snippets of interest hauled out of the archives.
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The notice is signed by Arthur Shepstone

Cheers
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:30 am

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I don't think this one has been posted before. It has been copied from the PMB archives original, if in fact there is an ownership issue I apologise in advance.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:35 am

No Prizes for guessing who this survivor is.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Searching through the dust of time   Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:38 am

And an interesting drawing.
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90th

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PostSubject: Searching through the dusts of time    Tue Jul 22, 2014 12:09 pm

Hi Springy
The first picture you posted I think is possibly from the 50th Anniversary ? , I have several of them , but havent got , or seen that one before , a good get . Is the Cochrane pic the actual cdv , or is it a scanned copy ? , the last one , I have a similar print which is coloured , I seem to think you may have it as well ? . Good work that man .
Cheers 90th  agree Salute 
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