Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Thursday, 1 November 2012

If The Cap Fits

Two pictures taken  approximately thirty years apart and yet very similar. Who are they? The first is my mother with her brother Billy, taken in about 1924.

The second is me with my brother, in the grounds of Wollaton Hall, Nottinghamshire in about 1954.

Apart from the siblings as subject matter, the other similarities are the poses, seated on the grass of a park, and the two boys' caps. Mum and her brother were close to each other in age, with just seventeen months between them. They were also close childhood companions and Mum was devastated when he died in a freak accident aged fifteen. You can see them together again in this post, where they are a little older.

I'm not sure where Mum and Billy are sitting but it could be the Victoria Embankment at Trent Bridge, Nottingham where they lived. There was a park with a walkway by the river where families could spend a pleasant Sunday afternoon. Billy is wearing a smart little cap, but it's not part of a uniform as he was not a member of the Cubs. My brother's cap is probably part of his school uniform, which was deemed the thing to wear on a Sunday outing to Wollaton Hall, a stately home which housed a natural history museum. When I was a child it contained glass cases full of very frightening stuffed animals.

Here's my brother when he was a little younger, proudly wearing his new school uniform complete with cap. Note that the blazer had plenty of room for growth!


If we step back two generations we find another little boy in a cap. This one is part of a cub's uniform and the wearer is my great uncle Charlie aged eight, at his big sister's wedding. It was my grandparents' wedding, which some of you will remember from Wedding Day Delay, where everyone had to get dressed up again the next day to pose for photos. This could account for the grumpy demeanour.

This splendid photo of the Irish Revolutionary leader, Michael Collins, showing him talking to the Kilkenny Hurling team at Croke Park in Dublin in 1921, was Sepia Saturday's photo prompt this week. It has lots of men wearing caps, many of them with a peak. So, of all the possible themes suggested, I plumped for that one. Why not visit and 'doff your cap' at the many and varied interpretations of the prompt from the creative Sepia Saturday contributors.

24 comments:

  1. Oh, Little Nell, you broke my heart when you said that your mother's brother died at age 15!
    Great take on the prompt though, I really enjoyed how you connected the photos, and the "grumpy" one is my favourite!

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  2. The similarity between the two pictures is striking. And that includes the facial expressions. Although the blazer had plenty of room for growth, the sleeves seem to fit his length.

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  3. I was amazed at how similar the first two pictures are. The children even look a lot alike.

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  4. A wonderful coincidence to have such similar family photos! Caps like that were a classic fashion for many generations but I doubt many boys would wear them today.

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  5. I can almost hear the giggle in that picture of you and your brother. What fortunate timing in capturing that moment. I like this collection of caps. (People are going to think you and I wore the same thinking cap in planning our posts!)

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  6. Hello Marilyn:
    What extraordinary similarities are to be found in these photographs which span different generations. In so many respects, or so it would appear, little changes.

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  7. Evocative photographs set among your way with words, Nell. Charming.

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  8. I love looking back and forth between those first two photos. You are obviously delighted and having a great time. Extraordinary.

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  9. The similar family photos are just wonderful, so sad that your mother's brother died so young. Beautiful post.

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  10. The similarities in the first two pictures are striking. I, too, was struck with sadness when you said your uncle died at a young age. Hats off to you for a wonderful post!

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  11. Despite the frightening stuffed animals you seem very cheerful! It's great you can make all these connections between generations (the digitalization of photo archives does have its advantages).

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  12. Those first two photos are absolutely wonderful! Everything is so similar -- and you can really see the family resemblances...loved it!

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  13. Remarkable likenesses in the photos. I remember being forced to pose in my new school uniform - I hated it and I'm glad the photo never survive. The cub's uniform caught my eye as my elder son wore one too, but never looked a neat as your greatuncle Charlie.

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  14. Caps leading our eyes through the years, a great interpretation. Enjoyable reading. It is remarkable how similar the first two photos are with so many years apart. Sad about your uncle's early passing.

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  15. You have such a delightful smile in the photo with your brother. Was it relief that you made it past the scary cabinets and back into the light?

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  16. What a delightful visit, your photos and their fitting words (even the frightening stuffed animals- I can relate to that!) all superb to read about and see. To me, it seems that the photo of your mother and her brother could very well be mistaken for the photo of you and your brother. That's just so perfect!

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  17. These are wonderful snaps. I chuckled at the blazer having growth allowance. I remember my high school one's sleeves were right down to my fingertips!

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  18. Such precious photos! Even your grumpy great uncle Charlie. :) What a tragedy for your mom's brother to die so young. How heartbreaking for the family that must have been.

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  19. The two top photos are wonderful. I can see guys had to wear hats no matter what.

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  20. Enjoyed your photos. Those children are cute and gorgeous!

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  21. Oh geez, no family resemblance at all. It's striking!

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  22. I too am struck by the similarities in the first too photographs - your brother looks almost identical to your uncle. What wonderful family photographs to have especially considering the loss of your uncle at such a young age. Thanks for sharing!

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  23. You're too cute!!
    That, face, that smile, it's contagious.
    :D~
    HUGZ

    (Billy and your brother look so much the same...)

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