An entry to Sepia Saturday. "Using old images as prompts for new reflections"
|Charles A Pugh|
Here is my father wearing a substantial flat cap. He has written on the back "about 1924" when he would be 17 or 18. When he was a lot younger than this there is a link to this week's theme of hats. His first job was delivering hats across the town to the women of Barrow in Furness for their social occasions. I never thought to ask him who he worked for or how many he delivered but he visited the full span of social classes. When he got his orders he was disappointed if the address was in a wealthy area for he said that they were poor tippers, but if his task was to call at one of the terraced house where the girls who worked in the factories lived he knew it was likely they would tip generously. He left the job to work for Cases Brewery but he observed that to do so meant he took a drop in wages but had better prospects. Perhaps his job with the hat shop influenced him for he was never seen without a hat throughout his life, although his preference was for a trilby rather than a cap. A three piece suit was a constant too.
The photograph was taken at Hawcoat Quarry on the highest part of the town, a wood and views may have made it a pleasant walk. The red sandstone blocks taken from this quarry built most of the Victorian public buildings in the town.
Going further back in time
is a carte de visite of two of my maternal ancestors, names unknown
Peering at the mother's straw hat I am wondering if the bow on the top was an added embellishment for the photograph, but the child's smile is perfect for the all encompassing bonnet and wonderfully frilly dress. The woman looks towards the camera but the baby sees something to smile at to its left and out of the picture
The all important mirror to look in to see the hat is on right. I've never had this carte de visite out of the album so it was a surprise to see Albert Gorton's pretty advert on the reverse.