Vesuvius, Italy


Napoli. | Il Vesuvio-Cratere in eruzione
(Crater of Vesuvius erupting)
1900s
Publisher: Ettore Ragozino, Galleria Umberto-Napoli

Probably a modified/fabricated image, published just before the 1906 eruption.

Mount Vesuvius is a somma-stratovolcano located on the Gulf of Naples in Campania, Italy, about 9 km (5.6 mi) east of Naples and a short distance from the shore. It is one of several volcanoes which form the Campanian volcanic arc. Vesuvius consists of a large cone partially encircled by the steep rim of a summit caldera caused by the collapse of an earlier and originally much higher structure.

The eruption of 5 April 1906 killed more than 100 people and ejected the most lava ever recorded from a Vesuvian eruption. Italian authorities were preparing to hold the 1908 Summer Olympics when Mount Vesuvius violently erupted, devastating the city of Naples and surrounding comunes. Funds were diverted to reconstructing Naples, and a new site for the Olympics had to be found./em>
Wikipedia.


Napoli. | Il Vesuvio-Carozza della Funicolare
(The Funicular car Vesuvia)
c.1904
Publisher: Ettore Ragozino, Galleria Umberto-Napoli

During the 1870s, a Hungarian railway promoter named Ernesto Emmanuele Obleight commissioned an engineering study on a possible funicular railway on the final steep ascent to the summit. The Banco di Roma was willing to back him, but he encountered opposition from the local community, which he bought off by means of an annual payment of £99 (£1 = US$5 in the late 19th century) plus a tax levied on every passenger. The £16,000 contract was eventually awarded to E. Oliveri of Milan in 1879, but such were the difficulties of the work that line was no opened to tourists until 6 June 1880. The construction of this funicular railway inspired the Neapolitan song “Feniculi Funicula”.
Thomas Cook & Son’s Vesuvius Railway (pdf)

“Funiculì, Funiculà” lyrics and information (Wikipedia)

Technically the funicular consisted of two separate tracks, one for each of the two counterbalanced cars (left), which seated 8 and were named ‘Etna’ and ‘Vesuvio’. The route was 806 metres long and climbed 391 metres at a maximum gradient of 63%. There was a longitudinal wooden sleeper on the top of which was carried a single rail. The cars had a double flanged wheel at each end which ran on this rail. In addition there were two angled rails, one fixed to each side of the sleeper at its base. The cars had wheels mounted from their floors which engaged on these side rails and kept the cars upright. Each track had two continuous cables carried on pulleys which were fixed to each side of the car. These cables were 22mm diameter steel ropes with a hempen core and with six strands each consisting of eight steel wires. The winding house was at the bottom, where there were two 45 horsepower high pressure steam engines (one a reserve) and coal fired boilers. The winding drum had automatic brakes to control the speed and the cars also had automatic brakes applied if the cable went slack. As coal had to be brought up the mountain on horseback, this became an expensive item.
. . .
A 1911 eruption destroyed the funicular upper station building which had once again to be rebuilt. All went fairly well for many years with no damage in the 1929 eruption, and with three larger cars being acquired for the electric railway in the 1920s, but by the 30s the line was losing money and because of nationalism in Italy the system was passed to a locally registered company, Società Anonima Italiana per le Ferrovie del Vesuvio, which was a Thomas Cook subsidiary. The lines ran during the Second World War but in March 1944 Vesuvius erupted again, once more destroying the funicular. The electric railway reopened but with low income prospects Thomas Cook could not rebuild the funicular and sold the railway to the operators of the Circumvesuviana railway. In 1953 a chair lift was installed by Von Roll to serve the summit. At this time the electric railway was still running, but soon partly closed as an improved road was built to Eremo, and at the end of 1955 it completely closed.
Tramway Information


Napoli. | Il Vesuvio visto dal Molo
(View of Vesuvius from the Molo)
1900s
Publisher: Ettore Ragozino, Galleria Umberto-Napoli

Storks on roof, Ribe, Denmark


Storkerede i Ribe
(Storks in Ribe)
Publisher: I. Lerche-Simonsen, Gaveboden, Ribe

The stork has for centuries been part of Ribe, and it means a lot to the people of Ribe, which reflects in frequent use of the stork in fairytales, myths, warnings, art, medias and as a souvenir. During summer the nests on top of the town roofs are full of storks and the large number of storks has given Ribe the name ”Town of Storks”.

The stork has been of great importance to many generations of people in Ribe and has spread joy and pride with its arrival every spring. Even though the stork does not visit every year anymore, this big white bird with red legs and beak is still an important part of Ribe. Ribe was earlier known as ”Town of Storks”, and the town has been quite successful in marketing this label. In the 1930’s there were most storks in, from 17 pairs in 1931 to 34 pairs in 1939. And that was the time, when Ribe got its byname. It was truly an impressive sight with storks all over Ribe, and during the best years, around 150 storks gathered at Hovedengen by the end of August, before they started their 12.000 km long migration to South Africa.
Ribe 1300

Belgian Army, WW I


Armée belge | Une section de mitrailleuses Maxim
(Belgian Army: a Maxim machine gun section)
c.1914
Publisher: Nels

At the beginning of the First World War the Belgian Army could field only 102 machine guns. However, many of these guns were transported by a very unusual method. They were pulled on small gun carriages by specially trained dog teams. The machine guns seen in the photographs above are Maxim guns, but the Belgian Army also had a number of French Hotchkiss guns. The dogs used to pull the machine guns were Belgian Mastiffs, this strong breed were more than capable of drawing the 60lbs weight of a Maxim gun. . . .The relatively cheap cost of pack dogs compared to horses, along with their relative lack of maintenance – with no need for horse shoes etc, made the dogs an excellent option. They also offered a much lower profile than that of a pack horse, allowing them to stay close to the guns ready to move under cover when in action, and were much easier to handle without the need for specially trained troops. The dog teams were attached to most Belgian line infantry regiments with each battalion with 6 guns, split into 2-gun sections – each battalion had 36 dogs for the 18 gun and ammunition carriages. The machine guns could be brought into action very quickly and it was said that the dogs were so well trained they would remain quiet and patient in their harnesses until it was time to move again.
Historical Firearms


Armée belge | Les Cyclistes
(Belgian Amry: The Cyclists)
c.1914
Publisher: Nels

Bicycle infantry are infantry soldiers who maneuver on (or, more often, between) battlefields using military bicycles. The term dates from the late 19th century, when the “safety bicycle” became popular in Europe, the United States, and Australia. Historically, bicycles lessened the need for horses, fuel and vehicle maintenance.
Wikipedia.

With the advent of WWI, the thickly-roaded districts of France and Flanders meant that military cyclists would find the ground better suited for their wheels than combatants found in the South African veldt. The flat landscape of the low countries meant that Belgium in particular was an ideal environment for military cyclists and they were well used in the initial stages before the static stalemate of the trenches set in. Four Carabinier battalions of the Belgian army had attached companies of cyclists. They wore a distinctive uniform with a somewhat old-fashioned peaked hat similar to a kepi. Their cycles were the “Belgica” which was a foldable cycle. This allowed the bicycle to be slung across the shoulder when encountering difficult terrain. A dedicated military cycling school in Belgium provided troops with specific training in reading maps, reconnaissance and communication techniques, as well as the mechanical skills needed to maintain the bicycles.
Suburban Militarism: Belgium’s Carabinier Bicyclists


Armée belge | Escadron de cavalerie
(Belgian Amry: cavalry squadron)
c.1914
Publisher: Nels

The use of horses in World War I marked a transitional period in the evolution of armed conflict. Cavalry units were initially considered essential offensive elements of a military force, but over the course of the war, the vulnerability of horses to modern machine gun, mortar, and artillery fire reduced their utility on the battlefield. This paralleled the development of tanks, which ultimately replaces cavalry in shock tactics. While the perceived value of the horse in war changed dramatically, horses still played a significant role throughout the war.
Wikipedia.

Teignmouth, England


A Rough Sea | Teignmouth
c.1910
Pubishers: J. Welch & Sons, Portsmouth

Google Street View.

Teignmouth is a large seaside town, fishing port and civil parish in the English county of Devon, situated on the north bank of the estuary mouth of the River Teign about 12 miles south of Exeter. It had a population of 14,749 in 2019 at the last census. From the 1800s onwards, the town rapidly grew in size from a fishing port associated with the Newfoundland cod industry to a fashionable resort of some note in Georgian times, with further expansion after the opening of the South Devon Railway in 1846. Today, its port still operates and the town remains a popular seaside and day trip holiday location.
. . .
By 1803 Teignmouth was called a “fashionable watering place”, and the resort continued to develop during the 19th century. Its two churches were rebuilt soon after 1815 and in the 1820s the first bridge across the estuary to Shaldon was built; George Templer’s New Quay opened at the port; and the esplanade, Den Crescent and the central Assembly Rooms (later the cinema) were laid out. The railway arrived in 1846 and the pier was built 1865–7. . . . The First World War had a disruptive effect on Teignmouth: over 175 men from the town lost their lives and many businesses did not survive. In the 1920s as the economy started to recover, a golf course opened on Little Haldon; the Morgan Giles shipbuilding business was established, and charabancs took employees and their families for annual outings to Dartmoor and elsewhere. By the 1930s the town was again thriving, and with the Haldon Aerodrome and School of Flying nearby, Teignmouth was advertised as the only south coast resort offering complete aviation facilities. During the Second World War Teignmouth suffered badly from “tip and run” air raids. It was bombed 21 times between July 1940 and February 1944 and 79 people were killed, 151 wounded, 228 houses were destroyed and over 2,000 damaged in the raids.
Wikipedia.


The Harbour, Teignmouth
1940s
D. Constance Ltd, London

Google Street View (approximate).

Water tower, Zeebrugge, Belgium


Zeebrugge – Château d’Eau
(Zeebrugge – Water tower)
c.1910

Built 1907, destroyed during World War I.

The harbour was the site of the Zeebrugge Raid on 23 April 1918, when the British Royal Navy temporarily put the German inland naval base at Bruges out of action. Admiral Roger Keyes planned and led the raid that stormed the German batteries and sank three old warships at the entrance to the canal leading to the inland port.
Wikipedia.


Ruines de Zeebrugge | 1914-18 | Château d’Eau et Abri
The ruins of Zeebrugge | 1914-18 | Water works and shelter
c.1919
Publisher: Nels (J. Revyn)

A book of postcards with a view of the replacement water tower (image 38) and a map showing the location (no. 19 on map).

York Minster, York, England


York Minster, West Front
c. 1910
Publisher: Sampson, York

Street View (exterior)

The Cathedral and Metropolitical Church of Saint Peter in York, commonly known as York Minster, is the cathedral of York, England, and is one of the largest of its kind in Northern Europe. The minster is the seat of the Archbishop of York, the third-highest office of the Church of England (after the monarch as Supreme Governor and the Archbishop of Canterbury), and is the mother church for the Diocese of York and the Province of York.
. . .
The Gothic style in cathedrals had arrived in the mid 12th century. Walter de Gray was made archbishop in 1215 and ordered the construction of a Gothic structure to compare to Canterbury; building began in 1220. The north and south transepts were the first new structures; completed in the 1250s, both were built in the Early English Gothic style but had markedly different wall elevations. A substantial central tower was also completed, with a wooden spire. Building continued into the 15th century. The Chapter House was begun in the 1260s and was completed before 1296. The wide nave was constructed from the 1280s on the Norman foundations. The outer roof was completed in the 1330s, but the vaulting was not finished until 1360. Construction then moved on to the eastern arm and chapels, with the last Norman structure, the choir, being demolished in the 1390s. Work here finished around 1405. In 1407 the central tower collapsed; the piers were then reinforced, and a new tower was built from 1420. The western towers were added between 1433 and 1472. The cathedral was declared complete and consecrated in 1472

Wikipedia.


York Minster, South View
c. 1910
Publisher: Sampson, York


York Minster, The Choir
c.1910
Publisher: Thomas Taylor & Son

Most sung services, including our Evensong service, take place in the Quire. Built between 1361 and the 1420s, much of the original structure was destroyed in a fire started deliberately in 1829.
York Minster


The Choir, York Minster
c.1920
Publisher: Valentine


York Minster, The Crypt
c.1910
Publisher: Thomas Taylor & Son

The Minster has two Crypts, with the Western one rediscovered and brought back into use following a fire in 1829. It houses the tomb of St William of York, the only saint to be buried at the cathedral, who was canonised in 1227.
York Minster

Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia


Sydney Art Gallery
1900s
Publisher: Sydney Post Card Company

Google Street View.

Virtual Tour

On 24 April 1871, a public meeting was convened in Sydney to establish an Academy of Art “for the purpose of promoting the fine arts through lectures, art classes and regular exhibitions.” Eliezer Levi Montefiore (brother of Jacob Levi Montefiore and nephew of Jacob and Joseph Barrow Montefiore) co-founded the New South Wales Academy of Art (also referred to as simply the Academy of Art) in 1872. . . . The destruction of the Garden Palace by fire in 1882 placed pressure on the government to provide a permanent home for the national collection. In 1883 private architect John Horbury Hunt was engaged by the trustees to submit designs.[8] The same year there was a change of name to the “National Art Gallery of New South Wales”. The Gallery was incorporated by The Library and Art Gallery Act 1899. In 1895, the new Colonial Architect, Walter Liberty Vernon (1846–1914), was given the assignment to design the new permanent gallery and two picture galleries were opened in 1897 and a further two in 1899. A watercolour gallery was added in 1901 and in 1902 the Grand Oval Lobby was completed.
Wikipedia.

Dinan, France


Côte d’Emeraude | DINAN — Vue sur la Rance – Le Viaduc
(VIew of the Rance – The Viaduct)
Dated 1912

Google Street View.

Dinan is a walled Breton town and a commune in the Côtes-d’Armor department in northwestern France. . . . Its geographical setting is exceptional. Instead of nestling on the valley floor like Morlaix, most urban development has been on the hillside, overlooking the river Rance. The area alongside the River Rance is known as the port of Dinan and is connected to the town by the steep streets Rue Jerzual and its continuation outside the walls the Rue de Petit Fort.
Wikipedia.

For centuries Le Vieux Pont was the only bridge in Lanvallay. This magnificent stone bridge is in perfect state of maintenance and boasts superb views of the Rance and its banks. However, only pedestrians and light weight vehicles can use it. Indeed, by the early 19th century Le Vieux Pont was already too narrow and too weak to sustain constant and increasing traffic. A new bridge was needed. The first stone (grey granite) of the Viaduc de Lanvallay was therefore laid on September 3, 1846. It opened to traffic in 1852. Ten arches support the 250m long x 40m high viaduct which connects Lanvallay, on the hillside, to the wall city of Dinan on the opposite side.
Travel France Online

The Gardens, Bournemouth, England


The Gardens, Bournemouth
c.1910
Publishers: Sydenham & Co, Bournemouth

Google Street View.

The Lower Gardens in Bournemouth are only a five minute walk from the main shopping centre, the beach and the pier. They are Grade II Listed Gardens and have the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Award for 2020. Visitors who walk through the gardens will be amazed by the beautiful floral displays that combine a range of colours, textures and scents. The Gardens also have plenty of activities to keep visitors busy including music at the Pine Walk bandstand, an aviary, mini golf course and an art exhibition during the summer. It’s a beautiful setting to just sit and watch the world go by with a coffee or have a delicious picnic with friends and family as well as a welcome haven from the hustle and bustle of the town. During the winter there is the fantastic Christmas Tree Wonderland which features a beautiful trail of Christmas trees and seasonal activities and attracts thousands of visitors every year. There is also a large rock garden which was which was built in the 1930s.
Bournemouth

Until the beginning of the 19th century the area was mainly vegetation and marsh. Development of the land began in 1840 but it wasn’t until 1859 that the owners granted permission for the area to become a public pleasure ground. The 3 kilometres of land we know as our Upper, Central and Lower Gardens today didn’t all join as one garden until 1872.

There was a competition to design the Lower Pleasure Ground in 1871, the winner was Mr Philip Henry Tree. His design included new walks, plantations and flowerbeds. Improvements were carried out over the years but the biggest changes were in the 1920s when the Square was laid out and the pavilion was built in the Lower Gardens. Large ornamental rock gardens and small waterfalls were included along the park facing side of the pavilion. In 1922 the War Memorial was built in the Central Gardens and the rose beds were planted. The design and layout of the gardens hasn’t changed much since the 1870s. Lots of the trees and types of shrubs are still the same too.
Bournemouth: History of the Bournemouth Gardens

Destroyed Tank, Belgium

Ruines d’Ypres-Hooge  | 1914-18 | Tank détruit
Ruines des Halles et Grand  Place | 1914-18 | A destroyed tank
c.1920
Publisher: Nels (Ernest Thill)

The red text (repeated on the back) is promoting a magarine factory in Belgium (link is in Dutch).

Wikipedia: Tanks in World War I

Wikipedia: British heavy tanks of World War I

Nobody was prepared for the bloody stalemate which prevailed during the First World War. Officers from all countries had in mind brash pictures of daring offensives with waving flags and blaring trumpets, epic cavalry charges and massive infantry squares marching under fire, bright uniforms, tactical genius and glory. This was quite a romantic view which was familiar to the commoners, the very same ones who then embarked with happiness and chants onto the trains. But, quickly, the grim reality of an attrition war became apparent, with death on an industrial scale. The early French offensives sank before the whirling staccato of the German Mauser machine-guns.

After a full retreat, the German offensive was miraculously stopped on the Marne, a few dozen miles north-east of Paris. From Belgium to Switzerland, all the opponents entrenched themselves. Artillery, barbed wire and machine guns took their toll on every offensive. On the German side, some attempts to break the stalemate included assault squads equipped with portable machine guns and grenades, as well as gas and flamethrowers. . . The idea of the “tank”, in the modern meaning of the word, appeared simultaneously in France and in Great Britain. In the latter, it was due to Lt. Col. Ernest Swinton, and in the former due to Col. Jean Baptiste Estienne. Both advocated the use of the Holt Tractor, which was then largely in use with the Allies as a gun tractor. This led to further developments and, despite many setbacks, culminated in 1916 when the first operational tanks were put to the test.
The Online Tank Museum