Discovered in a forgotten drawer of a secondhand caravan, a waterlogged, wrinkled photograph has sparked a local history mystery.
The photo, which depicts four young soldiers in green military uniforms and slouch hats, could hold treasured memories for someone, Tingha RSL secretary Audrey McArdle says.
Mrs McArdle is on the search for descendants of the men or someone who recognises them, in the hopes of reuniting the image with its rightful owner.
“I’d be only too happy if we could find somebody who owns it, somebody out of those families. It could be some of the relatives are still alive and around, who knew them,” she said.
She believes the men could be locals, as the photo was found by Stan Murphy in a caravan bought in Inverell. He brought the picture to Mrs McArdle in the hopes that her RSL connections might uncover the identities of the soldiers.
A handwritten caption on the back of the photo appears to read ‘Marshal Black, John Hacks, Nev (or possibly ‘Viv’) Duncan, Myself’. A red stamp indicates that the snap is a Kodacolor print.
“He says ‘and myself’, well who is myself? I know we did have Duncans in Tingha, but there was none with this name,” Mrs McArdle said.
She said she knew all too well how valuable such a photograph could be to those who’ve lost someone to war.
“I know my husband’s got some (similar photos) of his father because his father was in the war and his uncle was killed in the war. He was only 18 years, and it’s 100 years on the 4th of April since my husband’s uncle was killed,” she said.
Mrs McArdle welcomes anyone with information on the photograph or the men it depicts, to contact her on 0408 749 109 or 6723 3361.