A century after the First World War, a suitcase filled with photos of British sailors roaring on the high seas has been found.
The never-before-seen archive belonged to Lieutenant Edward Williams who traveled to South and Central America from 1918 to 1920 on HMS Avoca and SS Aracaca.
The crew seems to have had plenty of downtime as there are dozens of pictures of non-PC fancy dress parties, drinking sessions and boxing matches on the ship.
When the sailors disembarked they met the locals, took in the scenery and bathed in the tropical waters.
The archive is being sold by a private collector for £900 on July 19 at C&T Auctions in Ashford, Kent.
A century-old archive shows British sailors in fancy dress, including wigs, hats and accessories
A photograph taken after the First World War shows two young men competing to see which of them can knock the other out first, as their fellow sailors look on.
British sailors in fancy dress and face paint pose with some comic actor and filmmaker Charlie Chaplin
C&T Auctions specialist Matthew Tredwen said: ‘The archive and medals are housed in his original sailor’s suitcase where they have remained undisturbed for nearly 100 years.
‘The seller, a private collector, bought the suitcase at a junk sale in Kent.’
The original owner of the suitcase, Lieutenant Williams of the Royal Naval Reserve and Merchant Navy, spent time in Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands.
While there, he listened to a lecture by the famous explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton and later photographed him.
Along with the photo, the suitcase also contained Lt. Williams’ medal, papers, and cigarette case.
‘Two photographic albums accompany the group which visually document his naval life from the time of the First World War and the post-war years,’ said Mr Tredwen.
‘One of the albums contained an original photograph of the famous Arctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, giving a speech at Port Stanley’s Town Hall.
‘Albums are very comprehensive and well annotated.
A snow day for a senior sailor who is seen posing for a photograph taken by Lt Edward Williams who sailed the high seas after the First World War
A photo from the personal archive of Lt. Edward Williams shows some sailors jumping through hoops. Lieutenant Williams of the Royal Naval Reserve and Merchant Navy spent time at Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands.
Sailors appear to have formed a band as they pose while holding instruments in fancy dress and face paint
The boys visit the beach in their down time
Matthew Tredwen, specialist at C&T Auctions, described the picture of British sailors just after the First World War as a ‘fantastic grouping’.
‘There are many good pictures of his time in South America, a part of the world that was rarely visited at the time.
‘This is a fantastic grouping that really needs to be seen to appreciate the deep historical notes.
‘It really is a man’s life in a suitcase.’
His medal group consists of the George V Mercantile Medal, British War and Victory Medals.
Musically inclined sailors are ready to play their various instruments
A British sailor poses with a squid that was caught during a voyage on the high seas
In the picture above some sailors are diving in a crowd and not one of them seems to be able to stand still for a picture
One way sailors spent their free time was to conduct friendly boxing matches, an example of which can be seen above
Two sailors, one smoking a pipe, pose with a large squid
Some of the 100-year-old archive photos were taken in South Africa, just after the First World War.
Two sailors appear to be wrestling in this photo, although the exact situation is still unclear
A 100-year-old suitcase bought at a junk sale in Kent contains pictures, medals, cigarette cases and papers. The suitcase’s original owner, Lieutenant Williams of the Royal Naval Reserve and Merchant Navy, spent time in Port Stanley, Falkland Islands.
Suitcase owned by Lt Edward Williams, bought at a junk sale in Kent, contained medals (pictured), photos, papers and a cigarette case inside