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Actor Ernest Borgnine dead at 95 - CNN
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Thanks to Andi, Dave and John.

And a wee cheer you up bonus…

73 thoughts on “ALL OUR YESTERDAYS”

  1. Pics 3 and 12 are from the Crimean War.
    The photographer was Richard Fenton.
    Pic 3 is entitled “Quiet Day at the Mortar Battery”.
    Pic 19, I think, shows cavalrymen after the Charge of the Light Brigade.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Well done, DonDon. Crimea it is – and Roger Fenton. The photographs are dated 1855, a year after the Light Brigade charge. They show he cook-house of the 8th Hussars and ‘a quiet moment in a mortar battery’.

      The caption adds: “The day of the action photograph had not yet dawned, but one can admire the surprising results which this early war photographer achieved with his primitive apparatus.”

      Liked by 2 people

    2. DonDon and John:

      Some time ago I read about the Fenton photographs.

      Fenton’s Crimean War photograph named “Valley of the Shadow of Death” is in the Library of Congress identified as “Dirt road in ravine scattered with cannonballs.”

      But there are two versions of the picture, one with cannonballs scattered in the road (the version in the Library of Congress,) and one (discovered in 1981) that shows the road mostly without cannonballs in the road in the foreground.

      TIME says: “Scholars long believed that this was Fenton’s only image of the valley. But a second version with fewer of the scattered projectiles turned up in 1981, fueling a fierce debate over which came first. That the more recently discovered picture is thought to be the first indicates that Fenton may have been one of the earliest to stage a news photograph.”

      (It’s well established that the pictures of the dead on the field at Gettysburg were sometimes rearranged by photographers.)

      The Getty Museum says: “Borrowing from the Twenty-third Psalm of the Bible, the Valley of Death was named by British soldiers who came under constant shelling there. Fenton traveled to the dangerous ravine twice, and on his second visit he made two exposures. Fenton wrote that he had intended to move in closer at the site. But danger forced him to retreat back up the road, where he created this image [the cannonball image].”



      Getty Museum:

      Liked by 2 people

    1. DonDon……In 1955, Ernest Borgnine was a young actor near the beginning of his career when he appeared with Spencer Tracy in “Bad Day at Black Rock.” Tracy was a big star at the time, and played a WWII veteran with only one arm. Borgnine played one of the gang of murderous ruffians who ran the town. Borgnine went on to star in “Marty” the same year. At the 1956 Academy Awards, Tracy and Borgnine were both nominated for best actor……Tracy for “Bad Day at Black Rock” and Borgnine for “Marty.” Borgnine won the Oscar.

      The fight scene was carefully choreographed. A comment from IMBd:
      “Ernest Borgnine did the crash through the door himself, expecting it to swing open as he sailed through it into the street. But without the actor’s knowledge, John Sturges nailed the door shut. The momentum ripped it from its hinges, and it ended up hanging on the understandably shocked Borgnine like a picture frame which provided the desired natural reaction from the actor. “Borgnine has never forgiven me for that,” Sturges recalled.”

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Been trying to remember the name of the spaghetti western he appeared in but our digibox crashed and one was on it so unable to check. Anyone help ? (It’ll take ages to trace them in Giusti.)

      Only recall a final scene as he is shot in a Mexican bullring.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Pic 3 – Glesca Corpy bus for Lightburn? Nae idea where. Pic 7 – Glesca City Centre – No 29 Tram for Merryhull, late 50s/early 60s. Fred Hill was a jeweller’s shop but can’t remember the street. Pic 8 – Ernest Borgnine. Pic 18 – Renfrew Airport, 1950s/early 60s, soon to be replaced by Glasgow (Abbotsinch). Pic 19 – J.M. Barrie of Peter Pan fame & Ellen Terry famous late 19/early 20C actress – looks like receiving honorary uni degrees. Pic 20 – Fairfields Shipyard, Govan with its electric ‘pug’ loco.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Aye BTP, I believe the number 3 bus ran between Kelvindale and Mosspark, replacing the tram of the same number. Despite driving a black taxi in Glasgow for thirty five years, I am struggling to identify the junction, although probably south side as you say.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Can’t help with the location but I can tell that the bus is an Albion Venturer {CX37} with Brockhouse bodywork, probably dating from c.1949/50.
          The Brockhouse factory was in Clydebank, making this an all-Scottish bus, although the body was built to a Park Royal design. The factory closed in 1951.
          Here (hopefully) is a preserved sister vehicle in the original (& much better?) Corporation green & orange livery.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Pic 16: is there any truth in the story that singing cowboy Roy Rogers took his performing horse Trigger to the Horse Shoe Bar for a drink?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve heard that told as well – way back in my newspaper days in Glasgow
      in the late 60s. Supposedly a good stunt by an imaginative photographer but I can’t vouch for its accuracy. Certainly a great pic idea, but did it actually happen or just another hacks’ pub yarn? (Of which there were so many!)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pic 13 is one of the first electric trains on the Glasgow suburban lines (and out to Helensburgh and Airdrie and so on) – the first ones after the lines were electrified, I think. Their electric gear used to blow up quite regularly because the voltage used to change from 25kV outside to 16kV in tunnels – it’s a long story, but eventually they upped the voltage to 25kV throughout, and that solved the problem. We used to call them the blue trains, I think, after the livery.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Think there was a fire at Pertik station, there were introduced, taken off and returned to service, think there was a problem with the transformers and control gear.
      A big change from the steam trains that ran on the same line, fast and comfortable, clean.
      Still looks like they’re using them.
      Yes Mid blue paint, then orange, still called the blue trains, very confused visitors.
      Travelled to and from work on them and the old steam drawn.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I remember their introduction and failure on the first day, due to the transformer problem. We lived in a tenement which was above the tunnel between Charing Cross and Finnieston and, during most of the succeeding night, it was hard to sleep because the old steam locos had to be taken out of storage and deployed at various locations between Airdrie and Balloch/Helensburgh/Milngavie and the noise and shoogle kept us awake.

        The ‘blue trains’ were repainted orange when they were taken over by Strathclyde Regional Council and it adopted orange as the colour for public transport. Photo 1 shows the colours of Glasgow Corporation and Strathclyde decided it needed a change so that it would not be too closely identified with Glasgow.

        Despite the hostility from the Tory supporting media, Strathclyde was actually a strategic success and addressed the issue of affluent middle class areas encircling Glasgow, its people earning in Glasgow, but not paying for the public services Glasgow provided. SRC transferred resources from these selfish and self-seeking communities to Glasgow and also to the impoverished sparsely populated areas like Argyll, the south of Ayrshire and most of Lanarkshire and Inverclyde. Disaggregating Strathclyde was a POLITICAL act by the Major Government because it demonstrated that despite Mrs Thatcher’s ‘There is no alternative’ (TINA) there was one. Lothian Region, too, was in many ways even more radical and one of ots leading local politicians was a hairy young man called Alistair Darling. Whatever became of him?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. LOL. Alasdair… how long did the disruption last?

          Interesting thoughts on regionalisation. I remember reading that the “district” level was introduced becasue people living in the surrounding areas wouldn’t have been prepared to take on the enormous housing debt of the inner cities.

          Ah dearest Darling. What indeed became of that socialist? Why, he became an aristocrat and joined th politburo of course.

          Don’t they all?


          1. There were a couple of patchy attempts to fix it on the cheap, but, eventually, they had to accept that it had to be done systematically. So, it was probably more than a year before things started properly. On the whole, the full suburban network, including the introduction of the Argyle Line which linked north and south of the river has worked very well in the 50 and more years it has been bedded in. However, if you listen to BBC Scotland it has been disaster after disaster.

            The two tier system was quite a serious attempt at devolving local government to be closer to the communities they served. So, the Region was a ‘strategic’ authority looking at the big picture, with transport being a major aspect. The biggest budget was education and it was dealt with at the Regional level – part of a longer historic trend from the old school boards and burghs. This, undoubtedly raised and equalised, to an extent, attainment across the area.

            However, the districts did not work as well as the Region did, partly because of local politicians holding on to their little fiefdoms, and there was, sadly, a narrow minded ‘parochialism’. The districts were given responsibility over housing, which, theoretically, was correct. However, the scale of housing dereliction in the west of Scotland was so dire that the districts did not have the kind of funding that was needed to deal with problems which had festered for more than 100 years. (It was not really addressed until the Blair/Brown governments from 1997, having been severely aggravated by the ‘right-to-buy’ introduced by Thatcher. Given the scale of the problem in Glasgow, district councillors were right to be focussed on their own patches. But, housing was one of the ways which some Labour councillors used to exercise patronage and so it was tainted by a smell of corruption. On the other hand, a number of these Councillors had a very deep understanding of the complexity of public housing, better, in my view, than the academic town planners and those in the pre-devolution Scottish Office.

            Because of its size, Strathclyde attracted the politicians with real talent and vision and also tremendous expertise amongst public officials. Indeed, one of the reasons that Strathclyde was ended was because the civil service in Edinburgh were faced with people who were intellectually their equal and who were backed by a significant popular mandate – nearly half of Scotland’s population. The opposition to the privatisation of water was an example of Strathclyde’s clout.

            Districts, sadly, suffered as a result of the lack of political and Officer talent, although many were genuinely competent people.

            Other problems were that the boundaries of Police, education and social work areas were not the same, sometimes spanning different districts, and, even, regions. This built inefficiency in and led to some pretty nasty festering disputes. Fife was the only region where education, police, social work, regional and district boundaries actually aligned.

            Liked by 3 people

    2. Traveeled to and from work on them and the old steam ones.
      Big fire at Pertik station, transformer.
      My Monthly train pass cost me £2/7/0, used anytime of the day, unlimited journeys.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. trispw.

    Tying into your final comment:

    This is an article in the NYT. (Hope it isn’t tied behind a pay-wall!)

    The article itself is OK, it is the comments below that are, largely, very encouraging!

    Liked by 5 people

  6. I was SO proud of myself for identifying Fenton’s Crimean War pictures, the American actor Ernest Borgnine (whom I assumed would not be known in Scotland,) and misidentifying (but then identifying) James Barrie. But I didn’t logon the comments until well after Midnight, US Central Daylight Tine, and I discovered that the incomparable skills of DonDon, Andi, Bugger, and Ed, had preceded me. 🙂 So just a couple of things…….

    I had discovered the Fenton pictures about a year ago on the Library of Congress website, which has a number of them. His Crimean War photographs were among the first significant body of “war photographs” ever made, and established photography as a medium that would document the American Civil War less than 10 years later. But the Crimean War was 1853-1856, and photography had been around as a commercial medium since around 1840. So maybe there were earlier war photos?

    Wiki says that “John McCosh, a surgeon in the Bengal Army, is considered by some historians to be the first war photographer known by name. He produced a series of photographs documenting the Second Anglo-Sikh War from 1848–49.”

    But that leaves the American-Mexican War of 1846-1848.

    Wiki: “A number of daguerreotypes were taken of the occupation of Saltillo during the Mexican–American War, in 1847 by an unknown photographer, although not for the purpose of journalism.”

    “General John E. Wool and Staff, Calle Real, Saltillo, Mexico, c1847”:
    (John Wool served in three American wars……the War of 1812, the Mexican War, and the American Civil War. )

    As for #19, I thought the man might be Rudyard Kipling, but in checking, found it was James Barrie. Probably while Barrie was Rector of St. Andrews, 1919-1922. Kipling followed Barrie as Rector of St. Andrews, 1922-1925.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Danny, there were few places anywhere in the world where cinema audiences were bigger than in Central Scotland. We knew EVERYBODY who appeared in movies and not just Ernest Borgnine!

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Alasdair……..It was really surprising to me to realize how popular the American movies were there. I was surprised a few years ago to realize that Scots even understood what a “western” was. 😉

        Liked by 2 people

          1. Alasdair…. If the American West (in some form) hadn’t really existed, Hollywood would have had to invent it. 😉 I certainly didn’t appreciate how popular the American “movies” were there. I missed out on the heyday of the movie westerns, but have managed to see many of them on television.

            Liked by 1 person

        1. Danny, I can only echo what Alasdair said Scotland was mad for the movies, or the pictures, as we usually called them. Glasgow at one time had over 130 cinemas, the largest concentration per head of population outside the US. It also had Green’s Playhouse, the largest picture theatre in Europe. I have a book , “The Cinemas of Cinema City” by T. Louden. which provides much info about the city’s cinema heyday. When I was a kid (yes, the talkies had arrived :-)), I lived in a town of some 25, ooo or so inhabitants and it had 4 cinemas. The programme at each changed mid-week, so you could see a main feature and a B movie usually, Mon, Tue, Wed and then a different programme Thu, Fri, Sat. There were no movies on a Sunday. As the cinemas worked with different distributors, it often meant that there could be 8 main features running in any one week. And, of course you had the ABC Minors on Saturday mornings just for kids and matinee screenings on Saturdays. You were never stuck for a movie to see but as a kid you were often stuck for the price of a ticket.

          Liked by 4 people

          1. Andi…..Great description of the heyday of the movies! I really had no idea how popular they were there. I mostly saw old movie westerns when they played on television, and there are still some old television “western” series on vintage TV cable channels. I’ve heard people here talk about the Saturday morning B-movie western-themed serials that played at the old movie houses. And about double features, newsreels, cartoons, etc! 🙂

            As a child, I developed a somewhat romanticized notion of the “Old West,” and have visited some of the iconic old locations in the West whenever I’ve been able to. I remember reruns of a very old television series called “Wagon Train,” and spent a couple of summers motoring along the old (sometimes still visible) wagon trail route west to Oregon and California. On one trip, I followed the old trail west through Cheyenne and Laramie, by Register Cliff and Independence Rock along the Sweetwater, west across the Great Red Desert of south central and southwestern Wyoming, up through the Tetons and into the Yellowstone country, and then back east and north into Montana to see the Custer Battlefield.

            There are video pieces on YouTube that were made by a television news reporter that played for many years on the national CBS network evening news. These two show wagon train sites in Wyoming, and the Custer Battlefield along the Little Big Horn River in Montana.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Thanks for that, Danny. I remember Wagon Train on the TV in the olden days. Ward Bond as Seth Adams, the wagon master, and Robert Horton as the scout, Flint McCullough. Happy days!

              Liked by 2 people

              1. Andi……I’m learning about some of the old black and white TV shows by watching cable TV channels that run old series. I hadn’t seen “Wagon Train” until a couple of years ago. A very good series by late 1950’s TV standards I think. I’ve enjoyed it a lot. I recognized Ward Bond from old Frank Capra movies and John Ford westerns. He was in classic movies in supporting roles all through the glory days of Hollywood. He and Marion Morrison (John Wayne) both played football at USC (University of Southern California, ) and were life-long friends. Wayne would cast him in his movies whenever possible.

                That same cable channel is also running the old black and white episodes of “Gunsmoke,” a top rated western that played in prime time television on the CBS network for 20 years.

                John Ford’s stable of western actors like John Wayne, Ward Bond, Chill Wills, and Walter Brennan shared famously right wing politics, and the extent to which they were also racist anti-Semites is debated. It is however, fairly well established that Walter Brennan was a truly hateful and despicable character….a member of the John Birch Society, who had a virulent hatred for blacks, Jews, and all minorities, as well as all Democrats. On the set of “Bad Day at Black Rock,” Spencer Tracy communicated with Brennan though the Director John Sturges, because they detested each other too much to speak.

                Liked by 1 person

                1. Danny, “Gunsmoke” was on British TV too back in the old days but under the title “Gunlaw”. I remember it well with James Arness as Marshall Matt Dillon and Dennis Weaver, his Deputy, Chester, who limped and always seemed to address the Marshall as, “Mr. Dillon” in a sort of whining way. We also had, over the years – Rawhide, Bonanza, Wells Fargo, Laramie, Boots & Saddles, The Lone Ranger, Cisco Kid, Champion the Wonder Horse…and others I can’t quite recall at the moment. Too bad if a kid didn’t like Westerns 🙂

                  Liked by 2 people

                  1. Andi……Amazing to think of how westerns dominated the television and feature film landscape for so many years. Every one of those titles sounds familiar, although I’m not sure I’ve seen reruns of all of them. “Bonanza” was a huge hit and played for a long time I know. Gunsmoke was on the air for 20 years and up until just a few years ago held the record for longest running live action drama on American television. Dennis Weaver played “Mr. Dillon’s” sidekick, Chester Goode, for nine of the 20 years. He went on to star in several other popular series, and also had a career in feature films. Weaver later had a big television hit with “McCloud.”

                    I’m told that Gunsmoke was big in our family, since Dennis Weaver was born in Missouri, and some of my extended family a couple of generations back, knew him and his wife Gerry. His name was William Dennis Weaver, and was still using the name Bill when he went to the University of Oklahoma where he was a track star. I found an article of how such an athletic guy came to play Chester in Gunsmoke with a limp.



                    Liked by 1 person

  7. Is no5 Steve Tyler of Aerosmith? He’s Liv Tyler’s bio dad but she was brought up as Liv Lungren, because Todd Rundgren put his name of the birth certificate though he wasn’t sure he was her bio dad.

    Rock stars – drugs and rock and roll and what was the other thing?

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Chocolate heaven this week. Thank you.

    A dozen bottles of whisky for £8 or a gallon at £3.50 for the cheaper brand. How things have changed.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Looked again at Pic 7 with the No29 tram. I’m sure the turreted buildin g on RHS of street is the old Bank of Scotland (?-now flats) at the junction of Glassford Street and Argyle Street and that may be the dome of the Trades House that can be seen – faintly – in the distance.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. No 14 is a petrol engined 1939 Leyland Cheetah / Harrington coach.
    For it’s age, in wonderful condition, showing the colours of Blue Motors of Porlock, Somerset.
    I hope this link works because for once the rear view is more striking….
    Blue Motors LYA 923 - 2
    This shows Harrington’s unusual ‘dorsal fin’ arrangement, a patented air extractor in an era where many passengers would have smoked in the vehicle.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it worked fine. That must have come as a relief to people who didn’t enjoy a smokey bus.

      It’s hard to believe that smoking was ever allowed on a bus, and even more ridiculously, on a plane.


      1. In the old SMT buses to go with ‘Spitting Strictly Prohibited’ there were signs saying ‘No Smoking In Front Four Rows Of Seats’.


          1. One of the curious aspects of work in Paris during 70’s was being allowed to smoke in a library or a classroom but not on a bus, metro or at the cinema.
            Read somewhere that buses in Brittany carried notices prohibiting spitting – and speaking Breton.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. EEEEEK… I had a mate in Paris who would now be around 40, but was probably 22/23 at the time, who was from Brittany. He said it was quite hard for him to remember to speak French becasue he’d been brought up speaking Breton, so maybe things have improved.


      2. Old Cessna and Piper light aircraft still have the ashtrays front and rear.
        As a child I used to be held over the platform to be sick, from the fumes of tobacco and diesel, don’t stop the bus he’ll be okay, my father.
        I might not remember correctly but didn’t they make the downstairs non smoking and upstairs for the smokers.
        Virtually every adult smoked from memory.

        Liked by 1 person

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