Cameron Highlanders 1914


A pair of photos went viral on early November 2018 just before the Armistice Day). First photo shows the the Cameron Highlanders at Edinburgh Castle on August 12, 1914 before leaving for France.

The second photo allegedly shows the same battalion at Edinburgh Castle in 1918 after the war or depending on the source, in 1918 after the armistice.

Many people noticed the second photo is not real. It has been manipulated. There are number of clues like the shadow of the soldier on the first row and the fact that the trees are identical in both pictures. However, after reading this blog post, and noticing this photo wasn’t posted by many persons earlier, I started to wonder when the manipulation happened. The blog post mentions a book, The Sword of the North: Highland Memories of the Great War (1923) by Dugald MacEchern. Question was: is the second photo in the book like the blog post claimed? Is it a pre-photoshop manipulation?

I asked help via Twitter: perhaps someone would have access to the book or could find it from a library. Suddenly a Twitter account of helen pringle posted this:

Mission accomplished! A very rare book was found and we now know that the first picture is in the book but the “post-war” photo is not. Therefore it’s likely that picture #2 is a modern photoshop job. Big thanks to helen pringle and many other people who helped along the way.

Note: MacEchern writes that by Christmas 1914 only one officer and 27 men remained “unscathed” – possibly including those wounded as well as killed. In the first photo we can see 27 officers and about 1,000 soldiers. 
The photoshopped picture is accurate in that it shows 27 soldiers and one officer. Perhaps it was created as a representation of the devastating losses of the battalion.

I still don’t know who made this photoshop job. Please leave a comment or contact me via Twitter if you know something about it.

Categories: PhotoshopTags:

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