Forgotten History

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#31
When the Italian Army withdrew from Yugoslavia in 1943 (after the overthrow of Mussolini) they brought thousands of Jews with them. In Southern Greece the area occupied by the Italians had long been a refuge for Jews. Sadly this ended in 1943, the Italian soldiers were cut off and surrendered to the Germans.
 

McAvennie

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#32
http://www.gotts.org.uk/page35.htm

Yarmouth Bridge disaster - 1845

82 people die, mostly children, after the suspension bridge they are stood on collapses.

A gathering had formed on the bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese - :shock: - and as the japester passed under the bridge the movement of people from one side to the other evidently brought it down.

Doesn't seem to be much about this one online. I guess it may be better known in the Norfolk area.
 

Naughty_Felid

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#33
McAvennie_ said:
http://www.gotts.org.uk/page35.htm

Yarmouth Bridge disaster - 1845

82 people die, mostly children, after the suspension bridge they are stood on collapses.

A gathering had formed on the bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese - :shock: - and as the japester passed under the bridge the movement of people from one side to the other evidently brought it down.

Doesn't seem to be much about this one online. I guess it may be better known in the Norfolk area.

So that's what people did before the telly and internet.
 

stu neville

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#38
Naughty_Felid said:
McAvennie_ said:
A gathering had formed on the bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese
So that's what people did before the telly and internet.
Tell you what - compared to Strictly Come Mincing, Crap Factor etc I'd happily stand on a bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese.

At least until Harry Hill's back (and Primeval! Wheeee!)
 
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#39
stuneville said:
Tell you what - compared to Strictly Come Mincing, Crap Factor etc I'd happily stand on a bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese.
Don't. They're so desperate for new formats that, if there are any TV execs on this board, it's only going to be a matter of time before we've got Celebrity Falling Of A Bridge While Watching a Clown Float Down a River In a Barrel Pulled By Geese.
 

Yithian

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#40
Spookdaddy said:
stuneville said:
Tell you what - compared to Strictly Come Mincing, Crap Factor etc I'd happily stand on a bridge to watch a clown floating down the river in a barrel pulled by geese.
Don't. They're so desperate for new formats that, if there are any TV execs on this board, it's only going to be a matter of time before we've got Celebrity Falling Of A Bridge While Watching a Clown Float Down a River In a Barrel Pulled By Geese.
:rofl:

Soon to be followed by:

I'm a celebrity, get me out of this river and away from this freakish clown-barrel-goose contraption!
 

Yithian

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#41
Clowns In Barrels Pulled By Geese ...from Hell!

Can't Fall Off A Bridge While Watching A Clown Float Down A River In A Barrel Pulled By Geese,Won't Fall Off A Bridge While Watching A Clown Float Down A River In A Barrel Pulled By Geese.


...sorry.
 
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#43
And don't let the people at Hallmark know. Mother's Day, Father's Day, Grandparents Day, Administrative Professionals Day (I kid you not), Throw a Child at a Clown Day...
 

rynner2

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#44
French plan to invade Britain in the 18th century
An 18th-century French plot to invade with an American army during the War of Independence has been discovered by historians.
By Ben Leach
Published: 8:31AM BST 03 Oct 2009

The plan, which was drawn up by a French general, was to bring over 10,000 American soldiers and capitalise on a Britain that was distracted by the war on the other side of the Atlantic.

The general also proposed that the force include a corps of American Indians, or “sauvages”, as he termed them, that would strike terror into the British.

The document was drawn up by Charles-François Dumouriez when commander at Cherbourg and bears a pencil note saying it came from the papers of General Barthélemy Scherer, briefly Minister of War.

The papers state that it would be easy to transport the Americans across the Atlantic, and proposes they land in Ireland, where “they would be guaranteed success”.

With a corps of just 500 American Indians, the document notes: “It is impossible to imagine the terror that would strike the British on seeing them”.

The plot even suggests that the Bostonian people could "dress up and paint themselves" if they are unable to recruit enough willing savages.

“Even if the Bostonians could not assemble this number of savages, they could dress up and paint themselves,” it says. “These phantoms would be enough, by their mere appearance, to cause mass desertions among the British.”

The document includes detail on the likely deployment of British forces, and the supplies, ships, horses and artillery that would be needed.

It is not known how the Americans reacted to the proposal, or if they ever knew of it.

Jeremy Black, a professor of history at Exeter University, told The Times: “It is fantastical, in terms of the technology but ... completely mad — there is no way they could have made it across the Atlantic.

The document, Projet d’une Descente en Angleterre pour l’Année 1779, is being sold at auctioneers Bonhams in London on October 6 as part of a lot of books.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... ntury.html
 

PeniG

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#45
Oh, dear. That sounds like a flight of fancy from someone who didn't have any grasp whatever of what was going on in America at the time. At what would we - much less 500 Indians from any tribe! - have wanted to do it for? We had no interest in conquering Britain.
 

rynner2

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#46
Last surviving Trafalgar flag expected to fetch £15,000 at auction
The flag is riddled with bullet holes and splinters from the battle
Simon de Bruxelles

The only surviving Union Jack to have been flown by the Royal Navy at the Battle of Trafalgar has been discovered in a drawer. The flag was flown from the jackstaff of HMS Spartiate, one of Nelson’s warships, as the battle against the French navy raged 204 years ago this month.

After the defeat of the French, the flag was presented by a grateful crew to Lieutenant James Clephan, one of the most popular officers in the Royal Navy and one of the few to have risen from the ranks. After Trafalgar, Clephan was promoted to captain and went on to command his own ship.

The 11ft x 7ft (3.5m x 2.1m) Union Jack was made by the Spartiate’s crew from 31 bunting panels and is riddled with holes made by shot and shell splinters during the battle. It has been in the captain’s family since the battle but is now being sold at auction with a pre-sale estimate of £15,000.

Charles Miller, who is selling the flag in London on Trafalgar Day, October 21, said: “We believe it is the only existing flag that flew at Trafalgar. It is one of the most important historical items any collector could expect to handle. The damage is probably from bullet holes or splinter fragments, but despite this it is in amazing condition.”

Clephan, from Fife in Scotland, had begun life as a weaver but joined the Merchant Navy when the industry went into decline. He was press ganged in 1794 aged 26 and forced to join the Royal Navy.

He was made a midshipman in 1801 and rose to lieutenant later that year for distinguishing himself in the successful capture of the French ship Chevrette. At the time of Trafalgar he was First Lieutenant on the 74-gun Spartiate, which had been captured from the French at the Battle of the Nile and was the ship from which the shot that blinded Nelson in his right eye had been fired.

In 1811 he was promoted to commander. By the time of his retirement in 1840 he had risen to the rank of captain, one of only 16 press-ganged seamen to achieve that rank out of an estimated 300,000 men. He retired to live in Edinburgh where he died in 1851 aged 83.

The flag was treasured by his family and was kept for years in a darkened drawer to preserve it.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/u ... 865456.ece
 
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#47
I heard on a radio documentary about the preservation of HMS Victory's last surviving sail that the sailors who were supposed to fold the ensign at Nelson's funeral and place it on his coffin instead, and apparently spontaneously, tore it to pieces so that veterans of the Victory would have a memento of their leader. Onlookers were shocked at the breakdown in protocol but the sailors naval superiors, normally bastions of ferociously administered discipline, simply nodded in approval.

I found that quite moving - the idea that, for one moment at least, a State funeral full of pomp and protocol was taken over by the emotions of the men who had actually sailed with him.
 

Nemo

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#48
rynner2 said:
French plan to invade Britain in the 18th century
An 18th-century French plot to invade with an American army during the War of Independence has been discovered by historians.
By Ben Leach
Published: 8:31AM BST 03 Oct 2009

The plan, which was drawn up by a French general, was to bring over 10,000 American soldiers and capitalise on a Britain that was distracted by the war on the other side of the Atlantic.

But the French did invade though, but without American help.

THE FRENCH INVASION OF FISHGUARD
 

Sogna

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#49
Can't really see Jemima the Great being fazed by a couple of hundred Bostonians dressed in feathers and paint, unless she was convulsed with laughter.
 

rynner2

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#50
Brian May's obsession with Victorian photography revealed
Brian May, Queen's lead guitarist, has published another book that will confound his rock fans: a collection of quaint 'Magic Eye' Victorian photographs.
By Stephen Adams, Arts Correspondent
Published: 9:23PM BST 16 Oct 2009

Three years ago May surprised many by coauthoring a book on astrophysics with Sir Patrick Moore, called Bang! The Complete History of Universe.

Now May, who penned 22 Queen hits including Fat Bottomed Girls and Who Wants to Live Forever?, has turned his polymath's gaze on another unlikely subject – mid 19th century stereoscopic photography.

He and Elena Vidal, a photo-historian, have published a book of pairs of images, each taken from a slightly different angle, that a Victorian pioneer took of vanishing rural life in the 1850s.

When viewed correctly, the photographs appear to merge into a single three-dimensional image, in much the same way as a hidden image is revealed by staring at a 'Magic Eye' poster.

A Village Lost and Found documents May and Vidal's decade-long crusade to track down scores of dual-image cards produced by one mystery Victorian photographer – who enigmatically stamped his cards 'TRW' – and find the unnamed village in the pictures.

While that might appear an idiosyncratic pastime for rock star Brian May CBE, he revealed in the preface to the book that he had been "fascinated" by 3D illusions since childhood.

Such an interests should perhaps not be too surprising, as May studied physics at Imperial College London, obtaining a 2:1, before co-founding Queen with Freddie Mercury, John Deacon and Roger Taylor in 1970.

His interest in stereoscopy was piqued as a 12-year-old by a 3D cards given away in Weetabix packets, and as a student May would visit Christie's South Kensington showroom to examine old cameras and photographs.

Only when his musical career took off could he afford to buy anything,quickly becoming an avid collector, particularly of the work of 'TRW'.

He wrote of 'TRW', whom he later identified as one Thomas Richard Williams: "I felt drawn to Williams as an artist, perceiving an uncanny parallel between his world, balanced on that fine line between 'art for art's sake' and art for the audience, and my own world, in rock music."

Such comparisons may seem odd, but May said of his "bug" for stereoscopy: "I get as big a kick out of this as I do from music."

He quickly became "hooked" on buying Williams' work, even inviting fellow collectors to Queen concerts to secure deals.

While stereoscopy was a brief craze in the mid 19th century, it quickly faded, leaving TRW's work languishing in attics and trunks for some 150 years.

Part of the fun, May said, was the detective work involved.

One major riddle was that Williams gave no clue as to where he had taken the pictures.

May didn't even know if they were taken in one place or across the country.

Searching in vain, he finally decided to put up one picture of a church on the internet, and offer a set of Queen CDs to those who could identify it.

"Within 36 hours I had six answers, all the same," he said.

"I couldn't contain myself. I jumped in my car and drove there and – wow! There it was."

May's mystery church was in fact St Margaret of Antioch in Hinton Waldrist, a village just off the A420 between Oxford and Swindon.


Engaging the help of John Moland, the church warden, and a local historian, May set about identifying all the scenes in Williams' pictures and photographing how they look today.

The end result is a weighty 239 page book, that will be published on October 22.

In the measured language of a social historian, rather than a rock star, May explained why he admired his Victorian hero.

"It seems that he had a clear vision – that of painting a lasting picture of the idyll which he regarded as precious, and communicating it to his audience."

He remarked of Williams' vision: "It's amazing that he should be thinking of this in the 1850s – the last spinning-wheel in the village, the ploughing with horses.

"He is very aware that a whole way of life is about to be lost."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/cult ... ealed.html
 

rynner2

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#51
Long but fascinating article:

The map that changed the world

Drawn half a millennium ago and then swiftly forgotten, one map made us see the world as we know it today... and helped name America. But, as Toby Lester has discovered, the most powerful nation on earth also owes its name to a pun.

Almost exactly 500 years ago, in 1507, Martin Waldseemuller and Matthias Ringmann, two obscure Germanic scholars based in the mountains of eastern France, made one of the boldest leaps in the history of geographical thought - and indeed in the larger history of ideas.

Near the end of an otherwise plodding treatise titled Introduction to Cosmography, they announced to their readers the astonishing news that the world did not just consist of Asia, Africa, and Europe, the three parts of the world known since antiquity. A previously unknown fourth part of the world had recently been discovered, they declared, by the Italian merchant Amerigo Vespucci, and in his honour they had decided to give it a name: America.

But that was just the beginning. Waldseemuller and Ringman in fact had written the Introduction to Cosmography merely as a companion volume to their magnum opus: a giant and revolutionary new map of the world. It's known today as the Waldseemuller map of 1507.

The Waldseemuller map was - and still is - an astonishing sight to behold. Drawn 15 years after Columbus first sailed across the Atlantic, and measuring a remarkable 8ft wide by 4½ft high, it introduced Europeans to a fundamentally new understanding of the make-up of the earth.

The map represented a remarkable number of historical firsts. It addition to giving America its name, it was also the first map to portray the New World as a separate continent - even though Columbus, Vespucci, and other early explorers would all insist until their dying day that had reached the far-eastern limits of Asia.

The map was the first to suggest the existence of what explorer Ferdinand Magellan would later call the Pacific Ocean, a mysterious decision, in that Europeans, according to the standard history of New World discovery, aren't supposed to have learned about the Pacific until several years later.

The map was one of the first documents to reveal the full extent of Africa's coastline, which had only very recently been circumnavigated by the Portuguese. Perhaps most significant, it was also one of the first maps to lay out a vision of the world using a full 360 degrees of longitude. In short, it was the the mother of all modern maps: the first document to depict the world roughly as we know it today.

In the years after 1507, copies of the Waldseemuller map began turning up at universities all over central Europe. There, displayed in classrooms and discussed by geographers and travellers alike, its vision of a four-part world insinuated itself into the popular imagination.

Waldseemuller himself would later record that 1,000 copies of the map had been printed, a very substantial number for the day. But the rapid pace of geographical discovery meant that copies of the map were soon discarded in favour of newer, more up-to-date pictures of the world, and by 1570 it had all but vanished from memory.

etc...

Toby Lester is the author of The Fourth Part of the World, which tells the story of the Waldseemuller map, published by Profile Books.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8328878.stm
 

rynner2

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#52
Some facts and angles on English history, politics and society here that were new to me - worth a look:

Andrew Marr's The Making of Modern Britain

1. A New Dawn

In the first of a six-part series, Andrew Marr revisits Britain at the dawn of the 20th century. He finds the country mourning the death of Queen Victoria; fighting an intractable war against the Boers in South Africa; enjoying the bawdy pleasures of music hall; and worrying about the physical and moral strength of the working class.

There are stories of political intrigue between David Lloyd George and his arch enemy Joseph Chamberlain; the beginning of the struggle for women's suffrage; and an account of the day Mr Rolls met Mr Royce and kicked off a revolution in motoring.

With powerful archive and vivid anecdotes, Andrew Marr gets to the heart of Edwardian Britain. He brings to life Britain's struggle to maintain its imperial power in the world in the years before the First World War

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0 ... _New_Dawn/
 

stu neville

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#54
The sea lion one is def Bristol Zoo - the building in the background is I think the other side of this one.

I don't have a flickr account so perhaps someone who does could post that for me? Ta :).
 

rynner2

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#55
stuneville said:
The sea lion one is def Bristol Zoo - the building in the background is I think the other side of this one.

I don't have a flickr account so perhaps someone who does could post that for me? Ta :).
Well done! I don't have an account either, but there's an email addy you can use:
[email protected].

You could also attach your pic (or give them the link) so they can make comparisons.
 

rynner2

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#56
This is worth a look (the blurb says it all):

Paul Merton Looks at Alfred Hitchcock

Paul Merton continues his love affair with silent cinema in an exploration of Alfred Hitchcock's British films.

Before Hitchcock became the master of suspense, he made all kinds of movies while learning his profession and honing his technique. His later, much loved American pictures are full of visual sequences which owe a huge debt to his early days as a silent film director.

Merton sees Hitchcock as a man immersed in the visual language of cinema, who understood how to use camera movement and lighting for dramatic effect. For Hitchcock, heavily influenced by the German expressionist cinema, the pictures would always be more important than the dialogue.

Using clips and previously unseen archive interviews with Hitchcock, Merton weaves together a playful narrative of the director's early career and macabre world, revealing a man with a great sense of humour.

He talks to those who knew and worked with Hitchcock, including actress Anna Massey, director Roy Ward Baker, Hitchcock's official biographer John Russell Taylor and the great cinematographer Gil Taylor, the latter about working on two Hitchcock films at either end of his career - Number Seventeen in 1932 and Frenzy in 1972.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0 ... Hitchcock/
 

stu neville

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#57
rynner2 said:
stuneville said:
The sea lion one is def Bristol Zoo - the building in the background is I think the other side of this one.

I don't have a flickr account so perhaps someone who does could post that for me? Ta :).
Well done! I don't have an account either, but there's an email addy you can use:
[email protected].

You could also attach your pic (or give them the link) so they can make comparisons.
Shall do - going to search our own photos to see if I have a better one of the building in question, first.
 

rynner2

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#58
When Nazis marched through London

[video - which doesn't run for me!]

This newly-released footage is really quite terrifying.

It was unearthed by a Discovery Channel programme to be aired next week called Wartime London, presented by London cabby Harry Harris.

It shows the funeral, in 1936, of the German Ambassador to Britain, Leopold von Hoesch in 1936.

After a fatal stroke a state funeral was held for him, a salute of nineteen guns was fired in Hyde Park, and Grenadier Guards marched down the Mall. Shoulder to shoulder with Nazi soldiers.

They carried a coffin draped in a swastika, while crowds lined the road and balconies, a terrifyingly large number of them giving the Nazi salute. :shock:

Who are these people? They can’t, as Harris points out, all be embassy staff. Whether they were Germans living in London or British Nazi sympathisers is unknown. Most probably a mix of both.

Hoesch himself was a career diplomat, never a Nazi. He would have been horrified.

http://timesonline.typepad.com/comment/ ... ondon.html
 

rynner2

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#60
More news from WWI

Pale, shaky and unfit for war — Noël Coward’s worst review
Will Pavia

It was one of the most important reviews of his life. Critics would later think him brilliant but, standing before a medical officer in Colchester Military Hospital in the summer of 1918, Noël Coward was found to be “permanently unfit” for service.

Thanks to this critique of his abilities, Coward was spared the trenches and sent back to the stage. His discharge form is one of 32 million documents available online from today, following a three-year digitisation programme of service records held at the National Archives. They document the progress of over two million men through the Great War.

Coward only made it as far as Colchester but other Cowards went further. Harry Coward, a chauffeur who enlisted at the age of 39, was deemed fit enough and would later be punished for “drunkenness during active service”. A private by the name of Andrew Coward, demobbed in 1919, was regularly absent without leave.

Fellow actors also turn up in the online archive. Basil Rathbone enlisted in the London Scottish Regiment in 1916. The man who would be Sherlock Holmes in 14 films was described as having “dark” eyes and hair and a “fresh” complexion.

In the middle of no man’s land, while scouting enemy positions, Rathbone gave a convincing performance as a tree wearing a hat of fresh foliage, his face blackened with burnt cork. When a German soldier approached the tree shot him. :shock: For such performances Rathbone would be awarded the Military Cross in September 1918. A year later he had transferred from the trenches to Stratford where he was playing Romeo.

Heroic feats are captured by the paperwork, and some records are more expansive than others. The service record of George Peachment shows that he was awarded the Victoria Cross, for saving the life of an officer near Hullach in France. It also contains a letter from his mother, requesting his personal effects after his death.

While some give only a place and date of death, the paperwork following the death of Private Henry Allen, includes pages of reports and witness accounts of how he came to be killed by a faulty grenade.

Noël Coward was spared the hardship that would shape the later writings of J. R. R. Tolkien — discharged in 1916 suffering from trench fever — or C. S. Lewis, who captured 60 German soldiers in April 1918.

The forms show that his complexion was pale, his eyes were grey, his hair was dark brown, his girth “when fully expanded” was 40in and that he made his living as an actor. There was a scar on his left leg. His military character was “good”, he was “steady and well conducted” but the medical officer found him to be “pale, shaky, merry”. He “cannot stand any noises and complains of constant headaches” he wrote. His family history was “bad”.He was unsuitable for warfare.

Later he would remark: “I can take any amount of criticism as long as it is unqualified praise”. But that particular piece of criticism was probably very welcome.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/u ... 903932.ece
 
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