Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Conjuring up a Spy!

Lieutenant F.P.du Sautoy sporting a luxurious (and genuine!) moustache in 1902 [X550/6/73]

Wednesday 15th October 1914: Spy fever continues unabated in Luton and has caught another innocent victim in its net. On Tuesday night a young man, R.Archie Press, had promised to give a conjuring performance for a friend. To make the act more impressive he used make up, but for some reason felt he needed to apply this before leaving home. On the way to his friend’s house he called for a second friend. This friend was not at home so he waited in the street for some time before leaving without him. By this time the military police had become suspicious of his behaviour and noticed that his moustache was a false one. After observing him for a while that arrested him as he passed under the Midland Railway bridge. They would not allow Mr Press to persuade them to come with him to his friend’s house and insisted on taking him to the Town Hall, where he was searched and cross-examined for half an hour before he was finally allowed to go to his friend’s house with an officer in attendance. The officer’s suspicion was only allayed once Mr Press had performed a few of his tricks.

Source: Luton News 15/10/14

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