Friday, 27 May 2011

Sepia Saturday 76.

The young girl in the picture was my mother. At a guess, she'd be around twelve years old when this photo was taken, so that would be 1946/7. Although the picture is not in good condition, you can see the dog on her right hand side. He appears to be a border collie, or collie cross and his name was Rinty.

My mother was an only child, and didn't have the most settled childhood. She once told me that she had moved eighteen times by her twenty-first birthday! Her father was a farm worker, so they inevitably lived in tied accommodation. He was a blunt, no-nonsense Yorkshireman, who believed in being the master in his own house. My mother came home from school one afternoon, to find that he'd given Rinty away; apparently in response to something she was supposed to have done. If this photo was all she had left, then maybe that explains why it's seen better days.

Dogs played a big part in my mother's life. Growing up, I cannot remember a time when we didn't have one. Virtually all of our holiday pictures from my childhood have a dog in them somewhere! My father wasn't an animal lover at all, but put up with them all with good humour. After all, by the time they were married, I guess he knew what he was getting!

This is a Sepia Saturday post.


  1. How very sad for your mother to lose her dog so harshly - those were much harder days back then. My poor mother came home from school during the war to find her rabbit served up for tea:(

    I think is very healthy for children to be brought up with animals - teaches them to love and respect other forms of life:)

  2. I really feel for your mother. When my parents divorced, it was pretty tough. But perhaps the toughest thing, was having to give our beautiful Labrador away. She went to my teacher, who wept as she led her to a waiting car. Kids form strong bonds with animals, especially dogs. A sad tale, Martin.

  3. A very sad tale indeed. No wonder that photograph was treasured

  4. That is really sad and mean to take a dog away like that.

  5. Martin, that's such a touching post. And Sepia Saturday is a great idea!

  6. I'll bet the dog missed your mum as well.

  7. How sad! No wonder she always had a dog around later on in life-

  8. Jane Turley - You're right, things were very different in those days. Fancy having to eat your own rabbit! Even in wartime that must havr been tough.

    You have a point about children and animals, I'd never thought of it quite like that.

    Martin H. - That's a sad tale Martin. My mum always trusted animals much more than humans. Not difficult to see why.

    Thank you for suggesting Sepia Saturday. I've enjoyed looking around, I must be getting old!

    Little Nell - Strangely enough, although I've known the story for years, I only came across the photo recently.

    Postcardy - Different times I guess. Parents, in general, treat their children as they were treated. I never discussed this with my maternal grandfather; he died when I was seven.

    I'm Crayon - Thank you, I'm glad you thought so. You can blame Martin H for introducing me to it!

    Bob Scotney - I'm sure you're right, she had a rapport with animals.

    Southwest Arkie - We used to tease her that the dogs came before us! perhaps we had a point....

  9. Great post and welcome to Sepia Saturday!

  10. Cute photo! I love her summer skirt. It's very sad about Rinty. Her dad sounds like a pretty cold dude, but it was also probably a luxury to have an animal to feed, given the circumstances of his job. What is it about the men who cop that master of the house attitude. Some guys still do that today - an interesting and overt form of control... hmm I need to look into that one and see if I can figure it out.

  11. Martin, I should have said Welcome to Sepia Saturday too! You’ll find as a newbie to SS (I am a recent convert) that you will be diligent in commenting on everyone’s post but only get a few back! Don’t be downhearted, there seem to be a nucleus of faithfuls who support each other’s blogs and the others comment occasionally, so it’s like any other club really! I’m probably telling you what you already know as you are a seasoned blogger.I see you are an Age of Uncertainty follower too - that’s the one that got me into the whole business.

  12. Welcome! That Was A Cruel Thing To Do.The Photo Must Have Been Loaded With Meaning For Your Mum.

  13. Howard - Thank you, glad you enjoyed reading it.

    MuseSwings - I think it's fair to say that Yorkshiremen can be known for being insular and having a 'hard' outlook. An ex work colleague moved there, and enjoyed every minute. Unsurprisingly, his wife hated it; it's a very male dominated society. And this was only twenty years ago!

    Little Nell - Thank you, I've looked at everybody's post, but I admit I only comment if I think of something worthwhile to say. So, not often then! I do sometimes go back and leave a comment when I've thought about it for a day or two....

    tony - Thank you. I think you're right, although as far as I remember I'd never seen it until recently.

    Thank you all for your comments.....

  14. Very touching post. I'm glad your mother went on to have other dogs, although I suppose none of them were able to replace Rinty.

  15. "The better I get to know men, the more I find myself loving dogs."
    — Charles de Gaulle

  16. It's often the poor quality, tatty edged, insignificant looking snapshots tucked away amongst the fancy studio portraits that have the most poignant memories attached to them, isn't it? Welcome to Sepia Saturday, Martin, and thanks for sharing the photograph and your memories.

  17. Christine H. - Many other dogs, her favourite was her first German Shepherd dog, from about 1974. She came from a vet who had rescued her. She remained timid all her life (the dog, not my mum), but absolutely adored my mother...

    Mike Brubaker - Very apt Mike, she would have approved!

    Brett Payne - Not too many studio portraits in our family, lots of over exposed, badly taken snaps with heads missing! But none the worse for that.....

  18. My Mother adored dogs, but my Father didn't ! Apparently he allowed her to have a pup sometime in the first few years of their marriage,( during the war) but it was soon the dog or the marriage , so the dog had to go. By the time Dad passed away, Mum was 89 and unable to walk a dog. However, my brother and I both have dogs, so she gets pleasure from them( she is now 97) when we are there. I read your post a few days ago, but felt so upset with the thought of how your Mother must have felt that I didn't comment at the time.

  19. Frances - My father wasn't fond of animals either, but he put up with the dogs with good humour. As long as they left him alone, then he didn't mind too much. Unfortunately, my mum wasn't blessed with the best of health in her later years, and after we'd all left home, he was the only person left to walk her dog! When her last dog passed away, she got a cat, as she thought it would be fairer on my dad. The cat, in that way that cats do, proceeded to make his life a misery by scratching him every chance it got, and generally getting on his nerves!
    My mum told me about Rinty several times. I didn't know her father very well, but however Victorian he may have been, I doubt he got away completely with giving her dog away. You cannot see from the photo, but she was a redhead and of Irish descent (through her mother). Believe me, she had a temper, and I really cannot see her just accepting it....

    Thank you for your comment.

  20. What a fantastic post Martin - that photo of your mother is the dogs danglies. But how sad was it that the dog was given away? Awwwww...... a similar thing happened to me. I had a horse called Princess (I didn't name her), and I was involved in a traffic accident. My Dad was so annoyed that I had been riding on the roads that he sold me dobbin. Git!

  21. Greetings dahlink! you have featured on my blog today because of a bloggy 'tagging game'.

    To participate, you must abide by the following rules:

    Rule 1 - No Tag-Backs (you can't tag me back)
    Rule 2 - You must tag a further 8 bloggers
    Rule 3 - You must answer the questions below
    Rule 4 - You must have a link back to the people who tagged you

    And in the spirit of Bloggy fun, you must answer certain questions and publish them on your blog:

    If you could be any historical or current character who would you be?

    Name an interesting fact about yourself

    If you could go back in time and change one thing, what would it be?

    Which character traits annoy you?

    Name one thing that you would change in yourself?

    What do you consider your biggest achievement?

    Enjoy the fun, and if you have time, can you post your answers as a 'comment' on my blog so that I can get to know you better.

    Mwahh, Annie (Lady M) x

  22. I am sure it was more than anyone's life was worth to take away your mother's dog again! How awful for her. One of the ultimate cruelties her father could have inflicted on her. And poor dog, who doubtless didn't come to a good end if her father was that harsh.


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