Elizabeth Diana Percy, Duchess of Northumberland (née Montagu Douglas Scott) was born on the 20th of January, 1922, to parents the future Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch.
During the Second World War she served in both the Civil Nursing Reserve and the Women’s Royal Naval Service, and worked on the RMS Mauretania and in Australia.
She married Hugh Percy, 10th Duke of Northumberland in 1946 and went on to have seven children. Her husband ascended to the title after his brother, the 9th Duke, was killed in action in the war in 1940.
The Duchess outlived her husband, dying in Surrey, England in 2012.
I’ve mentioned this disaster before, but today is the fifteenth anniversary of the freakish firestorm that tore through Canberra, Australia’s capital city. Unlike other bushfires, this one burnt into the city itself, claiming lives and destroying many hundreds of buildings.
Watch from 1:08 in to see what the suburban streets looked like that afternoon.
The images below (from Wikimedia Commons) are from before the sky turned blacker than night, and then bright red. All the photos are of places I was on that day. When everything went black, it started raining embers, and the flames started rolling down the mountains that surround us, things got really scary in this part of town. (What looks like lights in the first picture is all fire.)
People I know lost everything, but we got lucky and the firebombing helicopters were just over us and stopped it before it jumped the road to our side.
In April of the same year they would take part in the infamous landings at Gallipoli in the Ottoman Empire (modern-day Turkey). 378 men in this battalion were amongst the 26 111 Australian casualties, which included 8141 deaths.
One of the many buildings destroyed in the 9th August, 1945 atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan was the city’s Catholic church. The Urakami Tenshudo was of historical significance because of the centuries of persecution Japanese Christians faced for practicing their religion.
At Urakami people risked death by torture for following a religion Japanese authorities saw as undermining their power and bringing too much Western influence to the Empire.
Urakami was ground zero for the nuclear attack on the city.
Photographed here on the 7th of January, 1946, the destroyed church is seen to still be a ruin five months after the atomic bombings that forced Japan’s surrender in the Second World War.