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Old British Royal Navy Photographs

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What Made the Chiefys Laugh ?


Written in pencil on the back:

“What made the Chiefys laugh?”

Would like to put names to some faces and also identify where this photo was taken – likely to be a Naval Training Establishment, perhaps somewhere close to London. Any ideas on this? And a date?


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October 9, 2009 at 9:03 am

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Old British Royal Navy Photographs

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JCA Dresden


On the back, written in pencil, the words:

JCA (or TCA?) Dresden.Or perhaps ICA Dresden?

Very possibly “ICA”, i.e. this picture taken with an ICA camera: “In 1909, the four camera makers Hüttig AG in Dresden, Kamerawerk Dr. Krügener in Frankfurt/M, Wünsche AG in Reick near Dresden and Carl Zeiss Palmos AG in Jena joined forces to become the Internationale Camera A.-G. (ICA) in Dresden…In 1926, ICA was one of the name-giving partners in Zeiss-Ikon. The others were Ernemann, also in Dresden, Goerz and Contessa-Nettel…” (ref: http://camera-wiki.org/wiki/ICA)

Comments Welcome. Any ideas for date?

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October 9, 2009 at 8:53 am

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WW1 Interwar and WW2 Navy photographs

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HMS Euryalus Crew

Would be great to put some names to the wonderful faces in this HMS Euryalus crew photo. Probably taken some time in the 1920s, given the pith helmet on the chap second left, back row. This British destroyer was involved in ww1 operations in the Dardanelles. In his book: Paradise Lost, Giles Milton writes: “…Euryalus had been sighted sailing into the bay at Smyrna. The ship’s commander, Admiral Peirse, had been sent to the city by the British Admiralty with orders to destroy all the fortifications that lined the bay. The Admiralty was putting the finishing touches to its Gallipoli offensive and was concerned that Smyrna would be used as a base for German submarines. Admiral Peirse set to work with gusto, launching a heavy bombardment on the two principal forts…landing several dozen shells on target and twice hitting their magazines.”

For further information on this ‘incarnation’ of HMS Euryalus the following webpage gives an excellent account of it’s history:  http://www.euryalus.org.uk/hist-4th.htm

Update: I was sent a message concerning this photograph. A gent recognised his one of the sailors as his paternal grandfather.  He believed this photo was taken between 1905 and 1910 and suggested the sailor on the right second row is wearing shin protectors which suggests he was probably a stoker in the engine room. He suggested the picture was of the engine room crew.

However, more recently I have been contacted by Brian Kennedy, who offered the following:

“The photograph of the sailors from HMS Euyralus is from either 1942 or 1943 as I’m pretty sure the person on the front row on the left is my father William James Kennedy. He joined the ship in 42 and by the end of 43 he was transferred to HMS Bamburgh Castle on the Arctic convoys when the Euyralus went back to the Clyde for a refit. My dads home town was Glasgow. He was a telegraphist on the ship and I think the picture is the communications team. It was probably taken in either Egypt (Alexandria) or Malta. The only other place I think it could be is near the Gulf of Suez as I know my father and probably at least some of the others from his team went to HMS Saunders training base to practise to be naval signallers to go in with the first wave of beach landings in the invasion of Sicily. In the end he was not one of those actually picked to do it.”

Brian Kennedy added:

“…on the euyralus.org.uk site there is I think a photo of the same team including my dad.” http://www.euryalus.org.uk/images/Photos_C42/George_Wilson/comms_branch.jpg

There would appear to be no resolution to the conflict presented above. The first gent suggests the photo was taken sometime between 1905 and 1910 – within the timeframe of the fourth incarnation of HMS Euryalus. The second, the fifth incarnation of Euryalus during WW2 – perhaps 1942.

Potential clue? The euryalus.org.uk photo (http://www.euryalus.org.uk/images/Photos_C42/George_Wilson/comms_branch.jpg) has the sailors showing only “HMS” on their capbands, whereas in our photo the sailors show “HMS EURYALUS” in full. My understanding is that full ship names were not worn on capbands during wartime (presumably to prevent the enemy finding out which ship the sailor/cap belonged to?). If this wasn’t a hard and fast rule, then it tells nothing conclusive but if so then our photo above  is clearly either prior to or post WW1 or post WW2.

The fourth Euryalus launched on 20 May 1901 and:

“…continued as flagship of the East Indies Fleet until 1919, when she returned to Britain to pay off. She was sold for scrap to Mr Sidney Castle on 24 September 1920.” ( http://www.euryalus.org.uk/hist-4th.htm)

The fifth Euryalus launched at HM Dockyard Chatham, on 6 June 1939 and:

“On 27 July 1954, Euryalus finally left the South Atlantic and arrived in Plymouth on 19 August to pay off and reduce to reserve. Approval to scrap was given in October 1958”. (http://www.euryalus.org.uk/hist-5th.htm)

Comments/Information on the above would be greatly appreciated.

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October 5, 2009 at 2:20 pm

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