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  1. #1
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    Black Watch officer's in the Boer war

    Over our lockdown I've put this impression together.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by rsvpiper View Post
    Over our lockdown I've put this impression together.
    Nice! If I may ask, where did the khaki spats come from?

  3. #3
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    Hi Toby
    They are just cheap one's off ebay dyed khaki.

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  5. #4
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    if my memory serves me, the Black Watch officers' sporrans of the 19th and early 20th centuries were made of goat hair, not horse hair as later, and had a slightly different shape.
    Sporran belt was really black, not white?

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  7. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackwatch70 View Post
    if my memory serves me, the Black Watch officers' sporrans of the 19th and early 20th centuries were made of goat hair, not horse hair as later, and had a slightly different shape.
    Sporran belt was really black, not white?
    I would love a goat hair sporran however they are like rocking horse ***** to find with a cost to go with it🤪 sporran belt should be white buff leather I'm thinking which is in the pipeline
    I've more pictures but for the life of me can't get them to upload!

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  9. #6
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    It's interesting about the hair sporrans in the mid-to-late 19th century and early 20th century.

    I think, looking at the photos, that many were horsehair, yet there was a different fashion or style of how the bottom should look.

    For the entire Victorian period it was generally the fashion to have the bottom of the hair a bit scraggly-looking. Since this is seen over and over, and from the people who pay the utmost attention to their kit (like RSMs, Pipe Majors, Drum Majors, etc) it must have been intentional. In other words we're not seeing old worn-out sporrans in poor nick, but sporrans looking the way these people wanted them to look.

    "Scraggly" isn't the right word, but the sporrans are made so that the various hairs end at various lengths, like when a beautician "feathers" somebody's hair. The hair isn't chopped clean off in a straight line or perfect curve.





    Though this "feathered" look is generally what I see when I look over old photos, it certainly isn't universal, and I do see some sporrans with the more modern trimmed look



    Specifically looking at the Black Watch, here c1855 you see the feathered look



    In the 1856-1866 period



    Now we're getting closer to the target period, I'm guessing this is 1890-1900



    Here's a photo showing extremely well-groomed, yet feathered, sporrans



    Unfortunately all the Boer War photos I have have been crudely coloured, the paint daubed on the hose-tops overlapping the bottoms of the sporrans.

    Here, though, around WWI we can see the more trimmed hair is starting to happen



    I'm so used to seeing that vintage look that the thing you sometimes see nowadays where they chop the sporran straight across looks strange to me. Note that some of the sporrans are cut straight, some are cut in a gentle curve.

    Last edited by OC Richard; 3rd March 21 at 12:11 PM.
    Proud Mountaineer from the Highlands of West Virginia; son of the Revolution and Civil War; first Europeans on the Guyandotte

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  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC Richard View Post
    It's interesting about the hair sporrans in the mid-to-late 19th century and early 20th century.

    I think, looking at the photos, that many were horsehair, yet there was a different fashion or style of how the bottom should look.

    For the entire Victorian period it was generally the fashion to have the bottom of the hair a bit scraggly-looking. Since this is seen over and over, and from the people who pay the utmost attention to their kit (like RSMs, Pipe Majors, Drum Majors, etc) it must have been intentional. In other words we're not seeing old worn-out sporrans in poor nick, but sporrans looking the way these people wanted them to look.

    "Scraggly" isn't the right word, but the sporrans are made so that the various hairs end at various lengths, like when a beautician "feathers" somebody's hair. The hair isn't chopped clean off in a straight line or perfect curve.





    Though this "feathered" look is generally what I see when I look over old photos, it certainly isn't universal, and I do see some sporrans with the more modern trimmed look



    Specifically looking at the Black Watch, here c1855 you see the feathered look

    Definitely on the to do list if I can bring myself to take scissors to my sporran 😜

  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC Richard View Post
    I think, looking at the photos, that many were horsehair, yet there was a different fashion or style of how the bottom should look.
    This is a little off-topic, but I've been wondering: how the heck do you keep your vast stores of photos/paintings/illustrations organized so you can find photos on a specific particular topic like this and your other "photo archive" responses? They're very helpful for illustrating differences across history. But...how!?

  13. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichiganKyle View Post
    This is a little off-topic, but I've been wondering: how the heck do you keep your vast stores of photos/paintings/illustrations organized so you can find photos on a specific particular topic like this and your other "photo archive" responses? They're very helpful for illustrating differences across history. But...how!?
    i would just make different photo albums on my phone and call them something i would remember them by
    the provincial representative of ontario for the canadien branch of clan logan

    Hoc Majorum Virtus ( This is the valour of my ancestors)

  14. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by rsvpiper View Post
    Definitely on the to do list if I can bring myself to take scissors to my sporran 😜
    Might be able to get a hair dresser to do it.
    Descendant of the Gillises and MacDonalds of North Morar.

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