Christmas, a long time ago, in vintage photographs

by | Dec 16, 2021 | Photography, Society and Culture

I have gathered together the following vintage photographs for readers of Marine Café Blog who are celebrating Christmas. They all have a connection to the sea, ships and sailors. This is but a small collection, but it provides glimpses into what Christmas was like in the old days.

Sailors read their Christmas mail aboard HMS DUNLUCE CASTLE at Scapa Flow, December 1941
J E Russell (Lt), Royal Navy official photographer
Courtesy of the Imperial War Museums (via Wikimedia Commons)
IWM Non-Commercial Licence

Sailors in boat, coming ashore for Xmas leave, 1909
Bain News Service, publisher
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, USA

Sailors on Christmas shore leave, 1909
Bain News Service, publisher
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, USA

Syrian girls at Xmas ship pier, c. 1915
Bain News Service, publisher
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, USA

A group of children on board the U.S. battleship “New York”, one of the newest in the nation’s fleet, greeting Santa Claus Luddy, the bosun’s mate, on Christmas day, 1916
Bain News Service, publisher
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, USA

Children in a crate hoisted on board HMAS AUSTRALIA II. The event was the annual children’s Christmas party and was hosted on 6 December 1930.
Courtesy of the Samuel J. Hood Studio Collection, Australian National Maritime Museum

A book you may find interesting

‘Christmas at Sea’ is a collection of stories on board a man-of-war contributed by American naval officers. It was edited by Edward Shippen (1826–1911), who was an admiral, naval surgeon and writer of naval history

 

Click on image to download the book==>

Old Barracks Christmas Custom, Royal Naval Barracks, Devonport, December 1942
Lt L Pelman, photographer
Courtesy of the Imperial War Museums
IWM Non-Commercial Licence

Christmas message from the workers of John Readhead & Sons Ltd, South Shields as they prepare to launch the cargo ship ‘Empire Curzon’, 24 December 1943
Courtesy of Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

Christmas greeting card featuring Sutton’s Beach, Redcliffe, c. 1908
J. Murray, photographer
Courtesy of the State Library of Queensland

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