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Pics from my Army days in Berlin.

Discussion in 'Exhibition Lounge' started by PeteE, Nov 29, 2007.

  1. PeteE

    PeteE Well-Known Member

    Here are some pics from my time in Berlin when I was in the RAMC at British Military Hospital, Spandau doing Pathology.
    They are 1957, on my Ensign Selfix 16/20 Model II with 75mm Ross Xpres lens ( not a good one ! ).The film has no markings on the rebates but was probably Agfa Isopan.
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    Look how the Reichstag is in ruins; see the posh CARS they had compared with what we had in England. The ones of the Russian War Memorial is just inside the British Sector; I sneaked a pic of the Russian soldiers with their guns- you didn't argue with them or get a beating !There are still Russian bodies inside the tanks from the street fighting in 1945; they took tanks off the street as a memorial.I was 20 years old then - now I'm a pensioner!
     
  2. spinno

    spinno Well-Known Member

    apart from the obvious signs of "age" they look as though they could have been taken yesterday.
    Excellent shots to remind us of a different era in terms of photography and world politics
     
  3. Dorset_Mike

    Dorset_Mike Grumpy Old Fart

    Of the cars identifiable in pic number five 3 of the 5 are british.

    Nice bit of nostalgia.

    Cheers MIKE
     
  4. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    :):):)

    Apart from the wheels, engine and body my car could be a bike.

    MickLL
     
  5. bench_ubbster

    bench_ubbster Well-Known Member

    Very interesting. Thanks.

    I thought you were joking about leaving the negs behind in my Berlin post :eek:
     
  6. PeteE

    PeteE Well-Known Member

    Bench : no, it's all true! I was in a hurry as I was due to leave Berlin the next morning to go to my next posting to Iserlohn in the British Zone. I had to escort a Sergeant to Hanover who had cut half his nose off after getting drunk and visiting the 'Haunted Gallery' of the Miltary Hospital in the dark as a dare, smashed a window then put his head out to shout down to the Sergeants and cut off his nose on the broken glass. I was on duty; I was called out to go up to the Haunted Gallery to retrieve his nose- the duty Corporal did give me a torch- I found this bit of bloody flesh on the window sill and picked it up in some cotton wool and took it to Reception. Op Theatre sewed it back on!
     
  7. spinno

    spinno Well-Known Member

    I trust it was part of his nose that you found....... :D
     
  8. hhmr

    hhmr Well-Known Member

    Pete,

    I loved those Berlin photos. That's real history, forget the super models and pop-stars who get reprinted so often. I spent a few years in the forces myself and didn't get anything as good as yours, but see: -

    http://www.pbase.com/hhmrogers/old_stuff

    My two earliest ones were taken when my father was stationed in Germany not long after the War and I was enjoying my first Box-Brownie. Later ones were taken when I myself was stationed in the Middle East.

    I was posted to Germany myself in the mid 1960s but nothing much to show for it photographically except family pictures. I'd just been on secondment to mapping projects in Nigeria and Borneo and was having trouble recalibrating my "eye".

    Henry
     
  9. Monobod

    Monobod Phantom of the forum

    I had a school trip to the Rhine Valley in 1954 and we went by train through Belgium from Zeebrug. The train went into Cologne and I remember seeing mile upon mile of bombed out buildings surrounding the Cathedral. I think it was worse than anything I had seen in London at that time.

    It was quite a shock some nine years after the war had ended, compared to the towns along the Rhine, where the Americans had invested and rebuilding was well underway.
     
  10. John_Baker

    John_Baker Well-Known Member

    I was in Germany from 1978 through till June 2000 – I have thousands of negs lurking in the attic, one day I will dig them out. I spent a long time at Celle which was just up the road from Hanover and I remember it well – great for a night out! I also did a couple of years at Deilinghofen which was next to Iserlohn – why is it when I look back that the world seemed a simpler and possibly a safer place!
     
  11. hhmr

    hhmr Well-Known Member

    I was at school in England but went out to join my parents for school holidays, the first time being Christmas 1946 and the last time being Easter in 1949. I'd seen bits of London (not the worst) but nothing had prepared me for what I saw in Cologne in 1947. Many of the bridges were still down in the Rhine at that stage and the autobahns were full of Bailey bridges spanning gaps left by bombing or demolition. My chief impression was, and remains, 'there must be a better way' of managing human affairs. Clearly I was never cut out to be a proper ruthless photographer as I wouldn't have dreamed of snapping that sort of thing either there or in UK, then or now; I'm quite glad of that. But I do wish I had some pictures of the reconstruction and recovery after the currency reforms in 1948. I also wish I had a few negatives from those days instead of just prints in albums. By the late 1950s I had enough sense to start looking after negatives and colour slides properly.

    I do hope enough prints from today wil resist fading or destruction to provide a similar historical record to family albums of the period 1930s to 1990s. Trouble is nowadays we all seem to circulate our family pictures by email and there may not be many prints or albums, any more than there will be that many negs. I still use film a lot and continue to file it carefully. I hope it won't all get dumped when I pop my clogs.

    Henry
     
  12. miked

    miked Well-Known Member

    Beat to you it, John. RAF Celle 1956/7. Photos galore stuck in various (browning with age) envelopes. RAF Sundern 1958, RAF Jever 1959. Returned to RAF Gutersloh 1962/3 then left to join Reuters News Agency, 85 Fleet St. All went downhill rapidly after that....
     
  13. John_Baker

    John_Baker Well-Known Member

    Too many beer references in there for me – Celle (the first, somehow I managed to get there twice for 6 years!) I was outside at a place called Scheuen, strange camp which was next to a German tank regiment. the only other neighbour was a brothel! I remember fondly the beer from Jever, but Gutersloh always makes me think of Sennelager – which had to be possibly the worst lager in the world!!! I spent a number of years in Lippstadt just up the road, which was very close to Soest and the Möhnesee...
    Great days, breathtaking places, really nice people and wonderful memories...
     
  14. tincup

    tincup Well-Known Member

    Nice photos. I love old photos. I have tons of the books Time used to do from the 70s n 80s. Anyway I really dig the last one. You see, if I had a time machine I wouldn’t worry about all the big things in history. I would just hang out in one of your photos.
     
  15. Monobod

    Monobod Phantom of the forum

    There is a macabre side to old photos. All those people who were once alive, just like us, are now dead and gone.

    One day, I suppose someone will look at photos of our era and say....all those people, who were once alive.........

    Whatever it is you wish, do it today, for tomorrow never comes. That is why I have just upgraded to CS3 and to hell with the bank balance!! :D
     
  16. John_Baker

    John_Baker Well-Known Member

    I found this again the other, it still makes me smile!!!
    "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO! What a Ride" :D :D :D
     
  17. tincup

    tincup Well-Known Member

    Old photos is the only reason to go into crappy middle class coffee shops and wine bars. I really do get adsorbed as if they were perfect breasts. I especially like the Victorian photos of the street and you can look outside and see the difference. The 1st thing you notice is that today we live in colour. And back then, traffic lights only had one light.
     
  18. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    Thanks for posting your pics of Berlin. I served in Germany for a year from August 1958 during my National Service. Initially I was based at Obernkirchen west of Hanover, and then at RAF Scharfoldendorf, about 35 miles south of Hanover. One of our occasional tasks was to meet the early morning train from Berlin* at the Hauptbahnhof Hanover, but I never got to visit Berlin myself.

    I have a few Ikonta 127 B&W snaps of Obernkirchen and Hamelin, and very many more taken on a Contaflex 1 of Hanover, Goslar, Gottingen and our weekend visit to Luxembourg. Must get them all scanned and published!

    * On one of these visits, I greeted the Army courier carrying the diplomatic bag simply with just two words, "Good morning". He responded with "And which part of Stockport are you from?". At the time my home was at Cheadle - 3 miles to the west of Stockport. I'd never realised that my "Manchester accent" could be so localised!
     
  19. PeteE

    PeteE Well-Known Member

    Well, thanks very much Folks for your interest: I had a look at the 'AP' forum in a sweaty, hot, internet cafe in Cebu, Philippines as I was away for the Christmas there with my Filipina wife and family. I am back in UK now, but I have hospital appointments so will try to put some more Army Days pics on later - by the way, one of you mentioned ISERLOHN; I was promoted to NCO i/c Path. Lab. in BMH Iserlohn until I finished in Sept. 1958 and have some shots of that also when I went back there in 1987.
     
  20. bench_ubbster

    bench_ubbster Well-Known Member

    Here's some recent Berlin pics (including me :rolleyes: ) Our hotel was very close to The bunker apparently (no sign of that at all now of course). Look forward to more pics as I can relate to some of the city now.

    All the best.
     

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