Sepia Saturday August 30th 2014 – Escaping

Ira Gelling Craine (known Paddy) escaped a few times in his life, sometimes when he was in the army during WW1 and there were several occasions when he went AWOL. He was of course punished for these excursions. This is just one example from his war records – on this occasion he was detained for 11 days, forfeited 11 days pay – which brought his total loss of pay to 22 daysPaddy AWOL

But later in life he escaped again, he escaped from the constraints of society and built himself a humpy* in the bush. The only punishment on this occasion was self imposed as he deprived himself of the comforts of living in a house.Paddy's houseHere he was able to indulge his hobby of mining. Paddy's mine

As well as having sunk this shaft he sometimes would pan for gold as well.Paddy panningHe was not always alone – it would seem that friends occasionally dropped in to visit – but don’t seem to have been offered a seat. Paddy with visitorSadly Paddy had another way of escaping – he liked a drink or three, and when under the weather he would cause some embarrassment to his family.  While on leave  during his war service years (or maybe AWOL) he arrived unannounced at a cousin’s house in the home country of his parents, the Isle of Man, and soon found he could walk to many of the local hostelries. In Australia he worked on the railways, and when near Minyip the home town of his brother Phillip, he would drop in to stay. His grand daughter Florence recalled these occasions as causing some grief to her mother, but “we kids always thought he was wonderful.” He certainly looks very contented in these photographs.

War Service Record courtesy of National Archives of Australia

Photos courtesy of the Linton Historical Society, Victoria

*Humpy – originally a word to describe a temporary dwelling built by the aborigines, but now in common use for a make do, temporary home.

There are other tales of escaping or running away to be found  at Sepia SaturdayRunning away


8 thoughts on “Sepia Saturday August 30th 2014 – Escaping

  1. Good story and photographs. I didn’t think of the escaping idea at all – the poor man at Coogee was probably just heading home 🙂

  2. Paddy led a very different life that took some skill, some drive, a real sense of purpose and dedication because it’s not easy to march to the beat of a different drummer.

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