Charcoal drawings, Holloway College, about 1937
My late mother created these charcoal drawings when she was a student at Royal Holloway College. They are all 19 x 12.5 inches (48 x 32 cm). I assume they were done in 1936, ’37, or ’38. She graduated in German in 1939 (the same year that war broke out with Germany, coincidentally). I do not know where the outdoors drawings were done. However, the stone railing (or whatever it is called) with spheres on resembles that in a contemporary campus photo.
My mother gained a degree in German in 1939; the same year that war broke out with Germany. My generation was led to believe — by films, books, and magazines — that World War 2 brought out the best in people. My mother, who worked assessing bomb damage insurance claims, said it was otherwise and I have read many accounts that verify her statement. For example:
Val and her partner, horrified, stared at the bodies lying below them. ‘I saw men running about and bending over the dead and wounded. At first I thought they were feeling for a heartbeat but they’d come in from the street and were taking their wallets and money.’
— Anne de Courcy, Debs at War, 2005
Royal Holloway College Wikipedia entry