Monday, July 7, 2008

What's my line?

Princess Elizabeth/Life Magazine/Issue: February 15, 1943

Royal trivia question:
In 1945, 18-year-old Princess Elizabeth convinced her father that she should be allowed to contribute directly to the war effort. She joined the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service, where she was known as No 230873 Second Subaltern Elizabeth Windsor.

Question: What was her job during the time she served in WWII?

Answer: Truck (lorry) driver. Also could perform operational maintenance on the vehicles. (Shown below changing a tyre.)


  1. I'm just going to split a hair with you Max. Just don't complain, you know you love it. It wasn't the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service, just the Auxiliary Territorial Service or ATS more usually. It was all women, the equivalent of the British Army for men. All the other women's equivalents did have Women in the title eg WRNS or Wrens, Women's Royal Naval Service.

    She learnt to drive.

  2. Beat me to it a. :-)

    I believe she also learnt the mechanics of the vehicle in case of breakdowns etc.. something I wish I knew more about what was under my car's bonnet instead of relying on the garage.

  3. Thank you a. I will just assume you are right about that ATS thing - obviously I just copied and pasted it from a Wikipedia article. One of us should go edit that article. You, please. :)

    After much deliberation, I have decided to award you 22% credit for your answer. (Learning to drive was not her job.) Had you said "driver" I would have given you perhaps 80%. Had you simply said "Truck Driver", you would have been 100% correct. Ok, "lorrie" driver.

    I have a couple more pictures, one of her changing a tire (although I think they called it a "tyre") and one of her underneath her large truck, changing the motor oil. I will post the one of her changing the tire, since the one with oil all over her face is a bit indelicate.

    The article also said that during her training, it was the first time she had ever been in a classroom where there were other students present and interacting, and that she though that experience was absolutely marvelous. Somehow sad, if true.

  4. Sage, hello! And, from what I read, you are absolutely right about her mechanical training. The more I study this lady, the more I am convinced she is hardly the "shrinking violet" many people assume she is.

    Did you know that, when the end of the war was announced, and crowds of people were celebrating in the streets, that she and her sister left the palace and were mingling with the crowd, hugging people just like everyone else? Probably wouldn't see that today.

    And, of course a. is right, and knows everything I have said here. I was only teasing her. :_

  5. You are right, she isn't a shrinking violet :-) I know I have had the pleasure of working for her and though she is a fair taskmaster, she can be hard and exacting - don't give second best, it won't be good enough.

  6. True about the classroom. She and her sister were tutored at home. Perhaps as a result of that experience, her children were sent to schools.

  7. Sage, now I remember your stories earlier of your time at Balmoral. But, didn't you say you were writing a more complete account of your experiences on your blog? I can't find the post. Help with a link? Or did you not do it yet?

  8. My but she was very pretty back then. And no horrible hat or suitcase style purse to weigh her down either!

    Thought I would pop in and say thanks for you popping in to my blog and leaving a, er, uhm, "nice" comment about my back issues. That was very kind of you, Max!

  9. What a great story, I am sure very few people actually knew that about her, no wonder she is still the Queen she had and still probably has guts. If I remember correctly she was in South Africa when her father died and she had to return early to UK to take up her position of Queen

  10. Hi Linda. yes she was. Pretty as a little princess.

    And I hope your back gets better in a hurry. Keep me posted, please.

    I don't know enough to give you advice, but I would imagine if you are still swimming every morning it would be good to stop for a few days.

    Be careful. You are the only Linda I know.

    That has red hair.

    And lives in Connecticut.

    And is a 911 operator.

    Who know how to BritishSpeak pretty darn good.

    Who has been to California this year.

    So I don't want to lose you. :)

  11. Hello Frostygirl. Thanks for the comment. It's really good to see you again. I think you are right that not many people know that story. I know I sure didn't before I read up on it.

    I had heard that she was away when her father died. The BBC site says Kenya, but I think you already know my opinion of the accuracy of the BBC. America haters. Bwwwwwaaaaaa!!! Ahem. Sorry. Anyway, they said Kenya. But South Africa would be fine as well. They were probably on a tour of Africa and hit both countries. Don't make me look it up for real, Frostygirl. :)

    How come you know so much, anyway? I need to stalk you closely for a while and find out more about you. :) :)

  12. Hi again, Max! The back is a bit better but you can bet the only rocking out I'm doing with Jamie is via the couch! I'd post a video but there really isn't much to see other than a person attempting to "play a guitar" and stare at the screen so as not to miss any of the notes! But I'll work on it and see what we can come up with - just for you!

  13. The Queen can still be seen to this day, burning rubber through the streets of London in her Big Rig.

    Gawd bless 'er!

  14. I'd hit that!

    Sorry, that was American Speak on a British Speak blog.

    Erm, let's try again.

    She's really rather fetching what with those curls and lovely jaunty hat tipped at just the right angle. I do believe I have orgasmed in my pants, mummy.

    Oh, you filthy boy!

  15. Ha! Fancy that! curls are good :0 Bet hers weren't real.

  16. Oh absolutely! Hell hath no fury etc... I was damaged growing up with short curly hair in the 60s, 70s., damaged I tell you! "Those curls" was a pejorative term in those days.



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