WWII sea mine discovered under gravel on the Sandaig shore in August 2016. Visible are the locations of the detonation horns and the hole where a time-sensitive self-destruct mechanism was installed. Hundreds of pebbles and shells are fused onto its surface. Tens of thousands of similar mines were laid around the Hebrides and the North Sea during the first and second world wars.
Original programme for ‘Bon Voyage’ (1945), a performance by The Tireans – a drama group formed by members of RAF Tiree during WWII. Judging by the stains and cigarette burns, the programme was well handled by members of the audience, including the donor’s father, airman Joseph ‘Ray’ Stephens.
Scanned correspondence between John Brown, Manager of the Scarinish Hotel, March-July 1949, and guests George and Kathleen Morton. George Morton was one of the flight crew based at RAF Tiree with 518 Squadron – Meteorological Observers, during WWII. George brought Kathleen back to Tiree for their honeymoon in 1949. The correspondence includes a receipt for £12 and 8 shillings for one week’s room and board, plus transfers, and instructions regarding the use of ration cards.
Compiled information about the Steamship Laristan which ran aground on rocks at Craignish, Hough, in 1942. Includes the log of the ship’s movements around the time it ran aground, an extract from a book about shipwrecks, and an extract from Home Commands’ War Diary – Casualties and Defects. The ship was also known under the names of Cherrywood and Empire Gulf.
Black & white photograph of seaman Ralph Frederick Smith (right) who was rescued by Tiree residents when his ship, the SS Laristan, ran aground on rocks at Craignish, Hough on January 19th 1942. Ironically, having survived the wrecking of the Laristan, Ralph Smith died at sea three months later when his next ship, the Empire Dryden, was torpedoed off the USA coast. Ralph’s Seaman’s Card with details of his death can be viewed here.
Scanned copy of a Royal Canadian Air Force Pilot’s Flying Log Book belonging to Fred B Green, AFC, who was a pilot with 518 Squadron based at RAF Tiree from February 1943 to May 1945. The log book shows that he flew missions on 1, 2, 5 and 6 June 1944, all in Halifax LL294, including a stint of 9 hours 50 minutes on 2 June. That flight was diverted to Stornoway, presumably on account of weather conditions.
Copies of the Royal Navy service record, death certificate and list of medals awarded to John Barnard Norton (Bunty) Whyte (1909-1942), son of Balephuil/Oban artists Duncan MacGregor Whyte and Mary Barnard Whyte, who was killed during an air raid on Southampton during WW2. The material includes correspondence from Navy Command to the donor.
Transcriptions of personal letters from Wilfred Lancaster (1909-1988) to his wife Elizabeth (Betty) when he was stationed at Kilkenneth, RAF Tiree during WW2. They provide an interesting insight into life at the airbase during that time. Includes photographs of Wildfred and two other airmen, Reggie Burton and George Parker.
Copy of a page from An Tirisdeach 679 about a visit to Tiree by the Free Czechoslovak Air Force Associates, an organisation dedicated to remembering the Czech men and women who served in the RAF during WW2. Includes a detailed biography of Flying Officer Leonard Revilliod (1922-1944) who died in a mid-air collision over Island House in 1944.