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The name in the case of the old camera

Discussion in 'Talking Pictures' started by RovingMike, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    Have you ever come across an old camera and found a name inside it? Ever tried to find out who that person was?

    I finally got round to trying to trace the name in the case of an old 1915 Authographic VPK I was given years ago, after it had been nagging at me in a cupboard for years. With a number and clue like Villers Bret, a visit to Villers-Bretonneux on Google Earth and I found a Franco-Australian museum and my guess he might have been an Aussie paid off. Aussie veterans records were a great help: Cpl Ross Nicholson of the 30th NSW Battalion, shipped to war in May 1917, brother Scott following a few months later and killed in May 1918. Farmer's son from Scone, NSW, shipped on the SS Marathon....it goes on.
    Pleased to say the museum was keen to get an item with provenance connecting to their town, which the Aussies liberated at great cost and which bears the motto: "Never forget Australia". It went off to them today. Hoping the Scone newspaper will turn up a picture of him too.
    SXH and Geren like this.
  2. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Well done you! Much better than gathering more years in a cupboard.
    Geren likes this.
  3. 0lybacker

    0lybacker In the Stop Bath

    Now, that is really worth an AP article, RM!
  4. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    Happy to write it.

    Ross actually joined up 100 years ago next month and boarded ship six weeks later. Earned 5/- (25p) a day, 3 of which were held back in Oz, so he would have had about £140 waiting for him when he got back. Could probably buy a house for that. Museum thinks he was part of a group that stayed behind with the War Graves Commission, billeted in the ruined "Red Chateau", which stood abandoned until pulled down in 2004 amidst protests. The action in which he is most certain to have taken part was the breaching of the Hindenberg Line in Sept/Oct 1918, where 30th played a leading role.
  5. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

    Great story Mike and a lovely looking camera too.
  6. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    Thanks, yes it is in quite good shape. The bellows has no holes, but you can't see much through the viewfinder. It is in what they called "war finish", just painted metal, rather than leatherette covering. Made in the millions, so worth about £2 in a car boot.

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