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michaeldr

A 1914 tea-towel or flag ?

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michaeldr

A recent visit home to help my father move house has produced an interesting souvenir; I think it may have been one of my grandmother's old tea-towels (?)

Landscape format, it measures about 25 X 19 inches

The centre is a map of Europe c.1914 and printed in black: N to S from the Kaddegat to Rome and E to W from Odessa to Cherbourg

The border has a pair of flags at each corner and in each case the Union flag of Britain is crossed with a flag of one of her allies; France (twice) plus Russia and Belgium. At the sides the border is a double twist of rope with red, white and blue between the loops of the twists. At the centre of each side this border is embellished with a life-buoy.

The scale at the bottom left hand corner of the map show "English Miles"

Next to the top left of the map appears the wording "By permission of the Manchester Guardian" [however I note that it does not say 'presented by' or 'with' that newspaper]

As the flags represent an alliance of only four nations and since Gallipoli is not shown, I am guessing that this item is from quite early on in the war. If any Pal can confirm its original use or provide me with any further info I shall be very grateful.

Regards

Michael D.R.

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christine liava'a

Somethingsimilar might be a good Forum Pals item

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Cliff. Hobson

Christine,

My Wife thinks like you who washes the pots at your house.

Cliff.

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michaeldr

Christine & Cliff

even if I'm not making much progress on this, thanks for your interest anyway.

By the way, I think that one reason that this particular tea-towel (?) has lasted so long is that it probably never saw any dishes; it was used, don't ask me why, as a wrapper for the family bible.

I have e-mailed the Guardian newspaper to see if they have any clues on this and if I get a reply then I will keep you posted

Regards

Michael D.R.

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michaeldr

Well......Well…...Well…...

Only six short years

Since October 2003 nothing has been heard from the Guardian on this subject

(surprise, surprise!)

But, what do you know?....

At last I have found a picture of one on the web

see http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/item/6...BOX=1&REC=8

It certainly does not seem to me to be a flag

Does anyone recognise this object and know what it is?

(& does this break any G W F record for the revival of an old thread?)

best regards

Michael

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manchester terrier
Next to the top left of the map appears the wording "By permission of the Manchester Guardian"

I'd suggest that the map was originally printed in the Guardian. The makers had to have permission of the copyright holders for reproduction, presumably.

Looks like a tea towel to me.

I've got a copy of "Popular Arts of the First World War" by Barbara Jones and Bill Howell which is a bit of an eye opener. The range of war related/patriotic tat churned out was amazing.

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michaeldr

Thanks for your thoughts MT

I'll keep an eye open for that book

regards

Michael

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MelPack

Michael

It has taken six years to be solved but ...................... it was a handdrawn map published by the Manchester Guardian on 7th August 1914 and reproduced with permission on the tea towel.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/nov/0...berate-accident

Now go and dry the dishes! :P

Regards

Mel

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michaeldr

Mel,

Thank you very much for that link to Gary Sheffield's article

We now definitely know that it was reproduced from 'Guardian' artwork

but whether it was a flag or a tea towel is still a bit of a mystery

The Sheffield article is fascinating and difficult to argue against

What a great find

Thanks again

Michael

ps: dishes done, by the way

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Guest minniemouse

I have one of these maps/teacloths too. What did you do with yours in the end, sell it, give it to a museum, or dry the dishes?

Dawn

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michaeldr

Dawn,

I regret that I have not seen it for a year or three

No doubt it was put away somewhere safe

But for the life of me, I cannot remember where

Rest assured it was neither sold, nor used on the dishes

I'm off to have a look now

regards

Michael

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Guest minniemouse

Thanks Michael, just wondering what to do with mine. If a museum would like it, would prefer to give it to one, rather than local charity shop, where it will just disappear, maybe to wash the dishes!

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Edgley

I've just found one which belonged to my aunt who was born around 1912 and was probably given it by her father or her uncle  both of whom were at Gallipoli and in the First and S cond Australian Infantry Battalions. Here is a picture. Does it look like the same one to you?  

image.jpeg

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Edgley

And thanks MelPack for the Guardian article. 

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NigelS

I have a similar item but with a different design (words & music of 'It's a long way to Tipperary'), and a little smaller. http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/document/9243/5771 I've always believed mine to be silk (or similar) and to be a handkerchief - what type of material are the map ones?  It doesn't have much weight & it would probably fold up fairly small, so I'm wondering if they were intended for sending out to a loved one at the front as an item that would be both of interest and use. 

 

NigelS

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Edgley
11 hours ago, NigelS said:

I have a similar item but with a different design (words & music of 'It's a long way to Tipperary'), and a little smaller. http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/document/9243/5771 I've always believed mine to be silk (or similar) and to be a handkerchief - what type of material are the map ones?  It doesn't have much weight & it would probably fold up fairly small, so I'm wondering if they were intended for sending out to a loved one at the front as an item that would be both of interest and use. 

 

NigelS

The fabric on this one is definitely cotton/linen and not silk. I have a separate, more detailed map of France on silk which was intended as a map which, as you say could be folded up v small. 
im pretty sure this was intended as a tea towel but was never used, it has an inscription, handwritten in ink in one corner, to my aunt. 

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

What's the age of these  items?

Are they genuinely from the Great War period or merely modernish reproductions?

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michaeldr
Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

What's the age of these  items?

Are they genuinely from the Great War period or merely modernish reproductions?

 

See the earlier post & link http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/item/6279?CISOBOX=1&REC=8

August-December 1914

 

Edit to add - The song sheet (Tipperary) Handkerchief could be a little bit later; upto 1917 - see http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/document/9243/5771

Edited by michaeldr

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

Yes, I'd seen the link.

Unfortunately that photograph is badly out of focus, as is the image in post #13.

I realise that the tea towels are thought to be old.

It would be nice to see a good quality image so that readers can look for possible clues as regards the provenance.

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Edgley

I don’t know if this photo is any clearer. I can’t be sure of the age of the tea towel. Here are a few images to give a sense of the fabric and the finish of the item. 

861E095C-D90C-428F-9131-02D57235247E.jpeg

7EDD33F4-59C9-43B4-8BE7-3F816A6F9BC0.jpeg

D75C5EED-A638-46C9-A0FA-05446BDDA597.jpeg

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
1 hour ago, Edgley said:

I don’t know if this photo is any clearer.

That's very good thanks.

Yes it does give the impression of being of that era.

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