Saturday, September 13, 2014

Sepia Saturday 245: 13 September 2014


Alan at Sepia Saturday says:

Three men. One bottle of whiskey. A friendly argument. A woman watching from the sidelines. The photograph was taken in Alberta back in 1916. 100 years later, the discussions still go on and all too often - at our house at least - a decent bottle of single malt will help the participants underline a point or emphasise an argument. The difference is, I am pleased to say, that women no longer hide in the background. There are a bottle full of potential themes for Sepia Saturday participants - drinking, sharing, posing and lurking have been suggested.

Just a short one this week as I haven't really been able to find anything to match the theme.  This is the best I can do I'm afraid.


Three Men on a boat in boiler suits.  A bell is to their left.


There's three men and yes they are posing for the shot.  There's a lot of drink lurking behind them.   

The sepia photo above is from the McLoughlin collection.  I think it is part of the set of photos that I posted about before which seem to be set in Papua New Guinea.  The boat railings look the same don't they?  This is the Macdhui.






I have confirmation of this from Trove here.  Although I notice that the hull is painted all white in 1937 so I don't know if this is an earlier photo.  I suspect it is as my mother was born in 1935 and I would be surprised if my grandfather was away then.  Burns Philp owned the Macdhui.  I think I've mentioned before that my grandfather used to work for De Havilland.  The same collection that has photos of the Macdhu (the Chinnery Collection) also has photos of De Havilland planes in New Guinea so maybe my grandfather went up to New Guinea to work on some planes.  I don't know.


Courtesy of National Library of Australia, Tuesday 10 March 1931
I found what looks to be a really interesting book online called Malaguna Road The Papua and New Guinea Diaries of Sarah Chinnery edited and introduced by Kate Fortune which you can access here.  I'm reading the book as much as I can - there's a great index which does mention De Havilland and the Macdhui. The Diaries cover the time period c 1921-1937.  Interestingly the last chapter talks about the Eruptions of 1937 on Vulcan Island and Tavurvur. It makes for fascinating reading.  

If you want to get a sense of what it was like, check out this video from a couple of weeks ago at the same place!



I think the thing that surprised me most with this video was the noise.  I know it seems silly.  I knew that volcanoes have lava and ash but I didn't realise how noisy they are!!


I'm not really sure how I could research my grandfather's possible trip to PNG anymore.  I'm open to suggestions !

For more Sepia Saturday fun go here.


24 comments:

La Nightingail said...

Wow - that volcano eruption was something else. I'm surprised the photographer & crew could be so close. I wasn't surprised at the explosive sound, but what got me was the invisible 'wind' from the explosion before you could hear it that blew the hovering clouds in all directions. I knew, then, SOMETHING was coming!

Wendy said...

Love that casual pose -- they don't seem concerned about being photographed. That's nice. I've never heard a volcano either, come to think of it.

Alex Daw said...

Wasn't it just amazing? It looked like some visual effect out of Hollywood didn't it? Unreal.

Alex Daw said...

Don't they look lovely young men? Really nice and relaxed and happy in their skin, as it were.

anyjazz said...

Hey, that's a startling video!

boundforoz said...

It's always nice to see photos of groups of friends. They are such an important part of life.

Alex Daw said...

Isn't it? I jumped - and still do - that's for sure.

Alex Daw said...

Indeed. Friends get you through a lot of stuff.

Kerryn Taylor said...

Alex my great uncle worked for De Havilland, dad said the family story was that he was small enough to be able to crawl through the tiny spaces. He had also been a jockey so quite a small chap. I chuckled at your phrase "a lot of drink lurking behind them"

Jo Featherston said...

2 of the guys are posing but I think the third looks like hes determined to ignore the photographer.

Little Nell said...

I really wouldn’t want to be filming that volcanic eruption; it seems a bit foolhardy. As I live in the shadow of a volcano (extinct) I always treat them with great respect! Lovely picture of the three three young men.

Kristin said...

The one in the middle reminded me of the man on the left in the prompt photo who is making a point or is he tossing a coin? Imagine how loud the volcano was to those in that all too close ship!

Postcardy said...

I wonder whether that video is in slow motion. The shape of the cloud stayed the same for longer than I expected.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Kerryn Welcome to the blog! Did your great uncle work for De Havilland in Melbourne? It's quite interesting reading the history of the company (well what I can find about it on Trove etc). Thank you for noticing the intended pun :)

Alex Daw said...

I agree Jo - though in a way I reckon that's a bit of a pose too tee hee. It's forced nonchalance I think.

Alex Daw said...

Yes Little Nell - Mad, I reckon. Mind you I think there is a kind of fatal attraction with disasters sometimes.

Alex Daw said...

Or is he reaching for the bottle? Wouldn't you love to know the story?

Alex Daw said...

That's exactly what "wowed" me too - it looked like something out of Hollywood. Is it just because it is being filmed that you can see it? Would you see it with the naked eye I wonder?

Cassmob (Pauleen) said...

The Macdhui is a famous wreck off Port Moresby. Luckily I haven't been near a volcanic eruption but the ensuing quakes are noisy and scary, especially the first time you experience them. Madang, which you mention in your other post, is another place which has volcanic eruptions...but then that's PNG for you.

Bob Scotney said...

I suspect that the three of them are part of the crew only too keen to poase and not get back to work.

genepenn said...

That was an interesting ramble from the the three men on the deck through to a video of a volcanic eruption. what struck me was there appeared to be no rocking of the ship which was nearer the eruption

Alex Daw said...

Dear Pauleen - Sorry for replying so late. Busy week and before I knew it, it's Friday. I didn't know that the Macdhui was a famous wreck off Port Moresby so that's something to file away for future reference. Thank you! I must also have been living under a rock for years as until recently I hadn't really registered that PNG was a quake/volcanic region. Geography was never my strong subject, to my shame and mortification.

Alex Daw said...

Tee hee...I suspect you are correct. They do look as though they have been doing a lot of work don't they?

Alex Daw said...

Ah yes, Genepenn, rambling is what I do best! It was weird that there was no rocking of the boat near the eruption. I wonder why that was....