Photos and Postcards


Photo album from a British soldier named Reginald, with the RACON section (radar beacon) of the 9th Battalion of the York and Lancaster Regiment based in East India. They were active in the Arakan War in Burma in 1942-1943 and in the battles in Southern Burma in 1944-1945. Shown are the memorial to the unit, the author standing atop a downed Japanese zero at Mingaladon, with his mates outside the RACON unit, numerous photos of Rangoon and Mandalay in 1945-1946, his billet at Maymo, Japanese POW’s clearing wreckage of one of their own fighters, new camp at Mergui, sitting atop a spitfire, more. t-phpc092bt-phpc092c49 photos in all, none missing, many with captions on reverse. All photos tipped in. N

Price: $600.00

Note: The 9th Battalion was raised in 1940, after being stationed in Northern Ireland with the 71st Brigade from 1940 to 1942. They were sent to India in 1942 where they joined the 25th Indian Infantry Division, part of the 53rd Indian Infantry Brigade. The battalion took a significant part in the Arakan battles of 1942–1943 and in the battles for southern Burma in 1944 to 1945.t-phpc092dt-phpc092e

t-phpc091t-phpc091aPhoto album belonging to a British soldier based in Bareilly India and then Chak Rata in the Himalayas and then Allahbad, all between April-July, 1942. He was with the RAF 23rd WOU (Wireless Observance Unit). His unit arrives in Bombay in April, 1942. Shown are the Tehsil bazaar, Moti Park bazaar, British military hospital, B.I. bazaar, town hall, prison and police headquarters, the 23rd WOU marching to 15 Clyde barracks, Indian and British troops together, transporting dead, native life, Sahiya Station, Chak Rata, mountain tribe at Chak Rata, military barracks in the Himalayas, including “MacMullens cinema”, McPhersons Barracks at Allahabad in July, wash house at Bamrouli, thatched roof built over a tent to protect from the heat, local road building.t-phpc091bt-phpc091c 160 photos, some tipped in so you can read captions on reverse. 11 photos have fallen out over time and are absent. The value of this album is that it traces the path and life of one of the very scarce RAF WO units. The unit was loosely attached to the 34th Squadron, which was based in Chak Rat from April 1-5 and in Allahabad from April 17-June 1942.

Price: $1100.00

Note: Following the fall of Burma in the Spring of 1942, great efforts were made to equip India with an efficient defense system which included radar, t-phpc091dt-phpc091esupported by an Observer Corps and the formation of Wireless Observer Units, both of which would fill gaps in the radar chain. In April 1942 early warning units were beginning to arrive in India and Ceylon. The main fear at the time was a Japanese attack on Calcutta. This album covers what I think is the only WO unit based in the Himalayas to protect from an attack from the north.


t-phpc090t-phpc090a1928 - 1929 photo album containing 90 unique original real photographs taken by air observer and reconnaissance airman Ronald Malloy of 20 (A.C.) Squadron C flight. Six photos have fallen out over time.

Malloy was an accomplished photographer because his photos, many of them taken from his bi-plane are well composed and clear. If you look carefully on some of them you can see where he's marked the coordinates for artillery fire if it became necessary. 20 (A.C.) Squadron was mainly a reconnaissance squadron used for information and calling in artillery fire although they did sometimes take part in combat and of course the Kabul Evacuation.

t-phpc090bt-phpc090cThese photographs were taken during the period of the Kabul and Peshawar troubles of 1928 and 1929. This was also the squadron that took part in the first ever large scale mercy flight.

The world's first ever major 'mercy airlift' was carried out from Kabul in Afghanistan to Peshawar in Northern India (now Pakistan), North Western Frontier Province. (NWFP), over the Suleiman mountains in the snowbound winter of 1928-29, using DC5s for reconnaissance, and Vickers Victorias and one Handley-Page to evacuate all the European embassy staffs - 'women and children first': not a single life was lost.

t-phpc090dt-phpc090eUsing only fragile biplanes the RAF saved Kabul's entire diplomatic community from the jaws of a violent tribal revolt. Held aloft by little more than canvas, wood and wire, pilots braved freezing temperatures and snowy 10,000ft mountains that offered nowhere for a forced landing. And over two months they rescued nearly 600 civilians and flew the equivalent of twice around the world without losing, or taking, a single life. The evacuation began with King Amanullah's ill-advised attempts to reform his deeply conservative subjects. Shown are aerial views of government house, RAF compound in Peshawar, Viceroy inspecting 20th AC Squadron, main street in Peshawar, Bristol fighter planes, Hindu merchants, aerial views of a number of forts and cities, married and mens quarters in Cherat, several photos of Miranshah Fort, a hilltop blockhouse in Waziristan, several photos of Jhikagali, repairing an airplane at Spinwam. The last photo is a photo of Malloy himself. A very well captioned album with very clear photos. N

Price: $800.00

t-phpc08721 PHOTOS KINGS ROYAL RIFLES CORPS, March from RAWALPINDI to RAZMAK 1926. The 1st Battalion, The King’s Royal Rifle Corps, moved from Ireland to India in 1922 and, after three years stationed at Rawalpindi, was ordered to the Razmak district of North Waziristan on the North-West Frontier bordering Afghanistan. At 8.20 a.m. on 16 November 1926, 14 officers and 618 other ranks, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel F.G. Willan CMG DSO, marched out of their barracks in Rawalpindi en route to Razmak. Two officers and 80 other ranks accompanied the heavy baggage which was dispatched by train. It took the Battalion 22 days to complete the 262-mile march, arriving at Razmak in a snowstorm on 8 December. t-phpc087aThe average distance marched each day was 14 miles with three rest days. The greatest distance marched in a single day was 20 miles on 1 December.

Setting an example to his men, the Commanding Officer marched the whole distance on foot stating that he was afraid that he might get stiff if he rode on his horse. The Battalion spent a year at Razmak seeking to prevent the Mahsuds and Wazirs from fighting. Razmak itself lies on a plateau 6,600 feet above sea level. The surrounding area is extremely rugged and mountainous. A British garrison was established at Razmak in 1922 to police the area, with battalions spending a year there at a time on what was effectively ‘active service’. In November 1927 the Battalion left Razmak and went to Lucknow. 12 real photos. N

Price: $220.00


Collection of 4 vintage postcards on Ceylanese and Indian circus performers (Karl Hagenbeck troupe, Chief Mykalowa, Nitawella Ukkuwa at the Palais Hippodrome, Himalaya performers at the Lyon Exposition).

Price: $80.00

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1945 photo album mostly from Margherita, Assam and also photos of Nepal and Sikhim. Shown are local life in Margherita, Assam with different identified shops in the native quarter. Some photos of the US 181st Signal Repair Company, which was based at Margherita. There are 90 original photos; most are 4 x 5 inches, and balance are 2 ½ x 2 inches. The larger photos have notes written on the back describing some of the locations and commentary on customs and people. Photos are housed in a leather bound volume that has a vintage metal ring binding mechanism that is somewhat frozen. T

Price: $390.00



Complete set of 7 photographic postcards on the Indian Coir (Coconut) Fibre Industy, complete with map and deteriorating cover. N

Price: $180.00

phpc082Very rare collection of 18 photographs on postcard stock of the 1935 Quetta earthquake. N

Price: $540.00

Note:The 1935 Balochistan earthquake occurred on 31 May 1935 at 3:02 am at Quetta, Balochistan, British India (now part of Pakistan). The earthquake had a magnitude of 7.7 Mw and anywhere between 30,000 and 60,000 people died from the impact. This ranks as one of the deadliest earthquakes that hit South Asia. The quake was centred 4.0 kilometres South West of Ali Jaan, Balochistan, British India. Infrastructure was severely damaged. The railway area was destroyed and all the houses were razed to the ground with the exception of the Government House that stood in ruins. A quarter of the Cantonment area was destroyed but military equipment and the Royal Air Force garrison suffered serious damages. It was reported that only 6 out of the 27 machines worked after the initial seismic activity. phpc082a A Regimental Journal for the 1st Battalion of the Queen's Royal Regiment based in Quetta issued on November 1935 stated, It is not possible to describe the state of the city when the battalion first saw it. It was razed to the ground. Corpses were lying everywhere in the hot sun and every available vehicle in Quetta was being used for the transportation of injured … Companies were given areas in which to clear the dead and injured. Battalion Headquarters were established at the Residency. Hardly had we commenced our work than we were called upon to supply a party of fifty men, which were later increased to a hundred, to dig graves in the cemetery.Tremendous losses were incurred on the city in the days following the event. On streets, people lay dead, buried beneath the debris, some still alive. British regiments were scattered around town to rescue people, an impossible task as 1st Queen's remember. While assisting in rescue efforts, Lance-Sergeant Alfred Lungley of the 24th Mountain Brigade earned the Empire Gallantry Medal for highest gallantry. The weather did not prove to be of much help and the scorching summer heat made matters worse. Bodies of European and Anglo-Indians were recovered and buried in a British cemetery where soldiers had dug trenches. phpc082bPadres performed the burial service in haste as soldiers would cover the graves quickly. Others were removed in the same way and taken to a nearby shamshāngāht for their remains to be cremated. The natural disaster ranks as the 23rd most deadly earthquake worldwide to date. In the aftermath of the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, the Director General for the Meteorological Department at Islamabad, Chaudhry Qamaruzaman, cited the earthquake as being amongst the four deadliest earthquakes the South Asian region has seen; the others being the Kashmir earthquake in 2005, Pasni, 1945 Balochistan earthquake, in 1945 and Kangra earthquake in 1905.


phpc075 Early 20th century set of 8 real photo cards by cigarette manufacturer Major Drapkin on Maharajas and Gaekwars of India at the time.

Price: $160.00

phpc073 Collection of 16 photographs on postcard stock of the 60th Rifles at Dagshai and Ambala from 1911-1912. Also activities in the NWFP. All described. N

Price: $320.00

Note: In World War I the 60th Rifles was expanded to twenty-two battalions and saw much action on the Western Front, Macedonia and Italy with sixty battle honors awarded. 12,840 men of the regiment were killed while seven members received the Victoria Cross and over 2,000 further decorations were awarded.
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