Tag Archives: archive

London to Brighton Train Journey: 1953 – 2013

Sixty years ago, the BBC filmed a train journey from London to Brighton, squeezed into just four minutes. Thirty years ago, we did it again. Now we are bringing it up to date, to see how much has changed – and how much is still the same. Here’s all three journeys side by side.

The soundtrack is Star Guitar, by The Chemical Brothers.

Via Kottke.

Mrs Elliott’s “brown eyes, blue eyes” experiment from 1970. Amazing.

Ms. Jane Elliott’s “brown eyes, blue eyes” experiment in 1970 (the third one after her first in 1968). This “Eye of Storm” documentary was made by William Peters in 1970 for ABC News and later included in the documentary “A Class Divided” (1985), which included a class reunion (of 1984).

The magic at ten minutes, after she created a microcosm of racism and segregation…plus their relief and the way they treat the collars at the end.

Thanks for the heads up, Adam!

New York, Britain and Poland, colour footage from 1939

Glamorous New York:


The A1:

The German/Polish border:


And the Jewish District in Warsaw:

More masks, thanks to the Retronaut

So it turns out the Chinese bathers in the previous story aren’t the first to wear full face masks. I hopped onto the excellent Retronaut and found a few goodies. First of all this full-face swimming mask from 1928:


Plus also a few others. Among them a rather fetching lace number from the Battle of the Bulge (WW2, 1944):


The caption reads:
“Sgt William Furia of Philadelphia, PA, wears a piece of a fancy lace curtain for a helmet cover. Starting as a joke, the lace decoration has proven practical as snow-camouflage cover in Luxembourg”

– The Windsor Daily Star – Feb 9, 1945



Then this, a photo of Dan Gurney sporting the first ever full-faced motorcycle helmet, back in 1960:


The caption reads:
‘Dan worked with Bell Helmets in California where he helped to develop the first full face helmet. He had seen motorcycle racers wear similar ones at Ascot Raceway in California. Dan wore the first full face helmet at Indianapolis in 1968 and then also introduced it to Formula I racing at the British and German Grand Prix in 1968.’
– Evi Gurney, via The Chicane



And finally, this creepily fascinating pair of recue masks, dated from between the mid-1800s and WWI.



The caption reads:

“The black leather helmet on the left is labeled “Respirations Apparat” by “G.B.Konic Altona,” and was made in Hamburg, Germany.

“The brass, three-quarter face mask to its right was made in Paris by J. Mandet. This type of breathing mask had a very simple apparatus, allowing only a short range of operation. When used, air would be forced into the helmet through no more than 13 meters of flexible tubing by means of a bellows operated remotely from the outside.

“Both of these masks have mica lenses to help protect the eyes from heat.

One well-known 19th-century manufacturer was named Vajen-Bader”

– Steve Erenberg

Astonishing colourisation brings black and white images to life. Uncanny.

A seriously impressive piece of colourisation, showing just how amazing Photoshop can be. The people behind this gallery and, I think, this site normally restore old wedding pics and so on, but here they turn their eye to iconic figures and images. It’s amazing how it brings them to life. The one of the self-immolating Vietnamese monk is harrowing enough – it was already a Pullitzer prize-winning image, but the others have just as much impact in their own way. Anne Frank, for example, seems to gain personality, Abe Lincoln looks – less anachronistic. Anyway, see for yourself:

Charles Darwin

Abraham Lincoln

Anne Frank

Mark Twain

Fridtjof Nansen (Norwegian explorer and total badass)

Thich Quang Duc, protesting at Catholic repression of Buddhists.

More images can be found here.