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Oct 9th, 2015: Badaboom, Little Badaboom

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   xoxoxoBruce  Friday Oct 9 12:47 AM

Oct 9th, 2015: Badaboom, Little Badaboom

During the big one, WW II, the face of war changed drastically, deliberately blowing up civilians for instance.

MI5 was a shoestring operation in those days and its explosives and counter-sabotage unit B1C had exactly three employees: the head Victor Rothschild, scion of the great banking family and 3rd Baron Rothschild, his secretary and future wife Teresa Georgina Mayor, and police detective inspector Donald Fish. None of them were capable of drawing clear and recognizable diagrams of the explosive devices that could be used to train operatives on how to defused them safely. Donald Fish knew someone who could, however: his son, Laurence Fish, a self-taught graphic artist who had worked in advertising before the war.

Rothschild commissioned Laurence Fish to draw the intercepted devices. The letters Rothschild wrote asking Fish to draw, in one now-famous example, an explosive chocolate bar using an operative’s rough sketch as his sole guide, have survived.

Rothschild then asked artist Laurence Fish to draw poster-sized images of the chocolate to warn the public to be on the lookout for the bars.

“I wonder if you could do a drawing for me of an explosive slab of chocolate,” the letter, written from a secret London bunker and addressed to Fish read. “We have received information that the enemy are using pound slabs of chocolate which are made of steel with a very thin covering of real chocolate.”
He continued, “Inside there is high explosive and some form of delay mechanism… When the piece of chocolate is pulled sharply, the canvas is also pulled and this initiates the mechanism.”

There are 25 drawings ranging in size from A4, 8.27 x 11.69 inches (the standard page size in Europe), to A1 which is quite large at 11.69 x 16.53 inches. Bray is thrilled to discover they weren’t destroyed during the war. She’s keeping them in her husband’s studio for now, but she would like them to go to a museum or archive which will honor her husband’s clean and detailed freehand graphics and the truth-is-stranger-than-fiction wartime reality they depict.

It doesn't matter if it's a Big Badaboom, a little Badaboom is enough if you're in it.

Gravdigr  Friday Oct 9 07:35 AM

Pretty neat. The dried peas thing is the bomb. Literally.

classicman  Friday Oct 9 02:33 PM

fascinating. I love this kind of stuff.

xoxoxoBruce  Friday Oct 9 10:34 PM

You been stalking the wild shrooms with booby traps?

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