Who did what

The identification of the names that have surfaced during this research, in particular through the ‘Early Warrants’ and the ‘Evercircular letters’ work, generally falls into the categories of ‘we can find them’ and ‘we can’t find them’.

We can (generally) find those attached to the Church, the Military and the University. Unusual or double barrelled names help.

We have trouble identifying local names, or, if identified, of discovering their stories. The category ‘Tales from the Early Warrants’ comprises, to date, martial exploits. Teachers in higher education can often be traced, through their papers or headships. Those in local Primary and Secondary education are harder to track, particularly if they work at a school not given to school magazines or publicity.

Running lists of Professors, Mayors, Bishops, Chief Constables and others who reach the top of their field – a disproportionate number this being a University town – risk hiding the work done by those whose jobs do not stand from the crowd.

It has been refreshing to spend some hours locating Scouters who were wages clerks, typewriter mechanics, packers of processed food and builders labourers.

Researches tell of the last daughter at home with the long lived widowed mother, working as a Master dressmaker; a Commercial Artist who was later in secret war work in Liverpool and hinted at making engines; the tailors assistant who was a member of the photographic society and got his pilots licence in 1939.

It is difficult to unpick the nuances in the status of a cashier at a drapers in comparison to a wages clerk. The bare bones of the job title give the job the same worth whether it carries responsibility for two or two hundred. And if you are of an age when you cannot appreciate the relative cost and mechanical complexity of a typewriter the role of typewriter mechanic is also hard to comprehend – he went on to repair aeroplanes in WW2.

None of this has yet brought forth exciting snippets and it is difficult to foresee a systematic collection of roles through these methods. But none of the names, usually Scouters with a long active service, has come back with the entry ‘Unpaid domestic duties’.

We do, however, have the page on Structure/ Trends/ Leaders 1945 – 1953 which was gathered at the time by W T Thurbon.

All grist to the mill – and a few slight leads that may unpack an adventure.

JWR

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