Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Imperial Splendour

Another photograph album has arrived at work. This time, it's a 1970s Selfix© collection of 2" square black and white photos that are so small, they must be the same size as the negatives. Luckily, my ancient scanner isn't daunted by the prospect of maginification and the results are quite good.

The photos feature British Army personnel - probably doing their National Service - in what looks like the early 1950s, during the closing years of the British Empire. The setting for the pictures appears to be Hong Kong:











Working with books is all very fine, but the best thing about my job is that I can take these unique photographs and diaries (that were destined to be dumped on landfill sites) and send them out into the world.

The first image, in particular, is superb and should be in a photo library.

7 comments:

Modern Life is Rubbish said...

I think number 1 is the cover of the great, lost Smiths album.

Steerforth said...

Yes, it's a wonderful photo and I can imagine an album called National Service.

Brian Busby said...

You both have it right... and I'm pretty certain that album would have a track titled "Diaries Destined to be Dumped on Landfill Sites".

Steerforth said...

That would be a great name for a song:

"Derek's forgotten words
Now pecked at by the birds..."

Martin H. said...

There's real attitude in some of these shots. I agree about the first one. The last in the sequence is also a favourite.

on site said...

how thin everyone is. another thing lost.

lapsangsouchong said...

The British Empire and Commonwealth Museum is currently mothballed (it's moving from Bristol to London, but there seem to have been delays). However, their online photographic collection, Images of Empire (http://www.imagesofempire.com), is still functioning. They might well be interested in this album...