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Frank Ryan’s jacket

Peter Graham

Well-Known Member
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Frank Ryan was an ex IRA man who fought with the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War. After being captured, he was sentenced to death but was pardoned by Franco personally. He was released into the hands of the German military intelligence and died in 1944 while working as an IRA, German intelligence go between. I came across this photo of him with International Brigade comrade John Robinson wearing a very interesting jacket. It appears to have a knit collar with a throat latch, button pockets and a Talon zipper. But what is it ? Private purchase or a hybrid A-1/A-2 prototype ? I’d love to know where he got it from and if it still exists.
 

Persimmon

Well-Known Member
Perhaps he was buried in it in Dresden.

There was a lot of good guys killed during Ww2 wearing the types of jackets we enjoy researching and wearing.
And their families suffered accordingly.
Sadly for me this IRA man who was spying for the other side is not someone I would want to celebrate or give much time to.
 

Peter Graham

Well-Known Member
Perhaps he was buried in it in Dresden.

There was a lot of good guys killed during Ww2 wearing the types of jackets we enjoy researching and wearing.
And their families suffered accordingly.
Sadly for me this IRA man who was spying for the other side is not someone I would want to celebrate or give much time to.
Save the politics. Perhaps I just should have said, “here’s a man in a nice jacket”.
 

Peter Graham

Well-Known Member
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Yes indeed Peter.
Perhaps you should have.
Sadly you brought up the despicable career of this gentleman ( and I use that word loosely )
Alan, you have a big problem and I’d be interested in what it is. I seriously can’t understand why anyone would object to background information related to a photo no matter how much it may offend your delicate good guys and bad guys sensibilities. I asked for information about the jacket, not the wearer, and if you can’t distance yourself from that then it’s not my fault. Just out of interest, would your reaction be the same if I posted this photo and explained that it was Adolf Galland, close associate of Adolf Hitler and Luftwaffe General with 104 kills against “the good guys” ? Who manufactured his Irvin Alan ? Sorry for the offensive background info. If your reaction is not the same as to the photo of Frank Ryan, then you’re a hypocrite.
 

Ken at Aero Leather

Well-Known Member
Looks like a typical British jacket from the 1930s. Zipper looks like and is likely to be a Lightning, US made jackets with that style of zipper fitting are rarer than Rocking Horse Droppings
 

Peter Graham

Well-Known Member
Looks like a typical British jacket from the 1930s. Zipper looks like and is likely to be a Lightning, US made jackets with that style of zipper fitting are rarer than Rocking Horse Droppings
Many thanks Ken. Looking again, it does look like a Lightning zipper. I didn’t know that style of jacket was ever made in Britain. If Aero made one, I’d be very interested. Hint hint !
 

Ken at Aero Leather

Well-Known Member
Similar jackets to these were made by/for Harrods, Warrings, Gamages, Avikit, Lilywhites etc, etc also Austin Reed, we have an original of theirs in our archives from when we were reaserching our version, The Royale.
 

Southoftheborder

Active Member
Many thanks Ken. Looking again, it does look like a Lightning zipper. I didn’t know that style of jacket was ever made in Britain. If Aero made one, I’d be very interested. Hint hint !
There was one on Aero's sale page for ages about seven or eight years ago I think it was. I mean well over a year as I recall. It was very cheap too but much too long for me or I would have bought it. I asked about it and was told it was a standard A 1 with a zip made to special order. Probably ordered by someone wanting a Lincoln Brigade jacket. They were going through a moment about then.
 

Officer Dibley

Well-Known Member
Yes indeed Peter.
Perhaps you should have.
Sadly you brought up the despicable career of this gentleman ( and I use that word loosely )
I’m with you. A soldier dressed in a uniform fighting against his nation’s enemies is a whole world different to cowards who wear civilian clothes and target innocent civilians. Nothing hypocritical about admiring a brave foe who accepted the result of WW2.
 

Cobblers161

Well-Known Member
I’m with you. A soldier dressed in a uniform fighting against his nation’s enemies is a whole world different to cowards who wear civilian clothes and target innocent civilians. Nothing hypocritical about admiring a brave foe who accepted the result of WW2.
Yet the allies used similar intelligence in Germany, how do we view them? Despicable or essential to the Allied war effort?

The Provisional IRA bombings didn't start until 1969, prior to that the IRA (not Provisional) was seen by many as a legitimate army fighting an occupation force.

War isn't clean.
 
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