Caption- "SINAI DESERT, C. 1917. A FORD CAR IN THE DESERT BETWEEN SHEIKH ZOWAID AND EL ARISH."
It looks like he has the extra large capacity running board fluid set! Nice Picture
Great photo. Assuming the brass radiator, the metal cowl body, the curved rear fenders without the crown, the louvered hood, and the electric headlamps all originally came on that same car and if the car was produced in a normal time frame for the 1915-1916 Model T Ford model year.
I'm 99.99% sure that the driver's door in that photo is a "dummy door." If it had hinges the lighting would clearly show the lower hinge while the upper hinge might be hidden in the shadow. If it was a door -- there would be a wider shadow around the outline of the door as shown on the back door – i.e. same lighting for both.
From that we know it cannot be a Canadian produced body -- as they came with both front doors working from the introduction of the front doors in 1912 through the end of Model T production in 1927.
That leaves us with two choices for the body -- First and the one I am leaning towards, a 1915-1918 UK production body that had a "dummy" door on the right hand side (their driver's false door). The UK did not add a second front door until approximately Oct 1918 (ref bottom of page 133 & top of page 134 of the "English Model T Ford"). Second possible choice for the body is a reversed printed photo and it is actually a USA body from 1915-1916 time frame that had a false / dummy driver's door on the left front -- but because the image is reversed it appears to be on the left in the photo.
I still am not sure about the wheels and tires in the photo above. A stock 1915-1916 USA produced touring would have had 30 x 3 up front and 30 x 3 ½ in the rear wheels. [Note I’m 90% sure that I read some where in Bruce’s (R.I.P.) book or the Price List of Parts – that the Ford USA produced Ambulances came with 30 x 3 1/2 tires on all four wheels. But I cannot locate that reference. If anyone knows where a reference for the size of the Ford USA produced ambulances is, please let me know as I would like to add that to my notes and/or make a correction if appropriate that I just imagined I had read it.] A Canadian touring would have had 30 x 3 1/2 wheels and tires on all four – but it would have also had 4 doors rather than 3. I’m not sure what size the UK tourings used during WWI production. If someone has a ready reference, please let us know.
Again thank you Dane for posting the photo.
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I believe your second choice is correct. Please note the tunic of the officer in the rear has his right lapel over the front. That is reversed.
Also, from the angle the photo is taken, the oil drain petcock would be visible if the image was not reversed.
Ken in Texas
The drivers beret is on correctly so the picture is not reversed. Most likely British.
Although the photograph is in the A.W.M. files, I believe that it is quite probably a photo of British soldiers, and a British T.
The sergeant driver seems to be wearing a 'Tam-o-shanta" rather than a beret.
Ken, Peter, and Dane thank you for your inputs. I suspect a higher resolution photo would allow us to see the Ford on the hub caps as well as more clearly see the way the coat is buttoned. But when I checked the price for individual use of photo downloads, I decided I would have to live with the ambiguity.
Does A.W.M. have a similar policy that the Henry Ford has? I.e. if you visit you can look at and even take photos of material for free. If so, does anyone live close enough and have some spare time?
And as I was typing this, the thought occurred that perhaps a British officer visited the Australian troops. The photo could have been taken by an Australian. Perhaps that may be how the photo became part of the A.W.M. files?
At any rate, I currently still believe it is most likely a UK Model T.
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Did the Canadian or British 15-16 T's come with non-billed front fenders?
It appears the hold downs for the top are substantial and may be the cast bracket type and not the leather strap version common to US production.
Looking closer, the body must be UK. The rear tub is three panels, instead of five, and there is a carriage bolt through the body.
The Sam Brown belt across the officer in the rear seat appears correct and like those in the other photo just posted today. The photo must be correct as shown and others have commented.
Ken in Texas
I worry for the life expectancy of the passenger in the back. He might as well be wearing a big sign that says, "Shoot me...I'm an officer!"
1st, 5th, 6th and 12th Battalions of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders fought in the Mediterranean Campaign in WWI. (Royal Scottish Regiment). Cannot be certain from the picture but most likely a Scottish Regiment, and could be the A&S.
This is as close as I could get looking it up online. I knew there were some Scotts there from having read in the past that they wore kilts and annoyed the hell out of the enemy with the bagpipes. So I search with that assumption in mind.
As for the officer being a target...I was once told that British Officers are taught at Sandhurst that it is their job to "show your men how to die." Perhaps this fellow took it seriously. As for me, "Colonial" officer though I was, I showed my men (and women) how to die every time we took a PT test.
I doesn't appear that the driver is wearing a kilt, as his knees are covered with what appears to be pant material; if he were wearing a kilt I'm sure his knees would be bare. I don't think you can pull a kilt past your knee's when sitting in that position but I could be wrong, as I've never worn (nor ever will) a kilt even though I'm of Scottish blood!
I was just focused on the hat. Would love to know. not sure why really....