Sunday, July 20, 2008

Pictures from my Archive… a frequent dip into photographs that I want to share with you….

Continuing with another selection from Allan Schafer's literature collection, now in my custody....
Allan Schafer of Grafton, a town in northern NSW, Australia
Illustrated above, Jimmy during the 1937 Dutch TT with team manager Joe Craig and team mates Freddie Frith and J.H "crasher" White.
as a young man was a prolific letter writer to overseas motorcycling "greats", this one is a reply to his letter together with an several photos from Jimmy Guthrie, the great Norton factory rider on the mid 1930s, tragically killed in Germany on 8th August 1937.
Several of the envelopes containing the letter from Guthrie to Allan are illustrated and if you are observant, you'll notice the stamps contain the head of the English king, George 5th and the other the head of Edward 8th.

The interest is the Edward the 8th stamp, as King George 5th died on 20th January 1936, and his eldest son became king as Edward 8th. The dead king's stamps were continued to be used until new dies were stuck for the issue of Edward 8th stamps...then a constitutional crisis developed in England, as the new king announced he was to marry Wallace Simpson, the divorced American socialite... Edward abdicated in favour of his brother, George 6th and so relatively few stamps were produced as the dies were defaced and only a hand full of coins produced, believed to be mint sets.... The stamp illustrated is one of those few.
Guthrie's death shocked the motorcycle racing world in Europe and Norton Motors issued a condolance photo of Jimmy with the text illustrated on the back of it.

Possibly the last photograph of Jimmy Guthrie alive...taken in the pits during practice for the 1937 German GP...Mildred Woods, wife of Stanley Woods, Jimmy Guthrie and team-mate Freddie Frith.

Left click on photos to enlarge.

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