Stuart Bates, who forwarded this scan of this photo to me, wrote:
"This photo was posted on the
Victoria Wars Forum. We have found many anomalies', leading some of
us to think that it is just a 'mock-up'.
Here is a summary of our findings
In the original photo, the
1. is wearing a Rifles tunic,
with braiding to the cuff which indicates a captain.
2. has no badges of rank.
3. seems far too young to
be a captain.
4. is not wearing a sword, which
would be expected of a captain
5. is wearing the pouch belt
incorrectly i.e. from the right shoulder
6. has a helmet to the East
Lothian Yeomanry which should have a red/white plume or red for a
bandsman. Perhaps it is red but shows as black because of the
photography of the day. (Yes,
red would be likely to appear very dark or black in a black+white photo of
that period - Peter Stubbs)
It certainly looks lighter than
the near black rifle green of the tunic, which is incorrect for the ELY
7. has a sword belt that is not
of the Rifle's design which was a patent leather belt 1 1/2" wide with
silver/white metal snake clasp
A fellow member of the forum told
me that it was not uncommon for people to ask for photos to be taken in
military dress and it may well be the case here. Photographers may have
had a 'store' of uniforms and accoutrements for just such occasions."
(Yes, some photographers did keep costumes
such as highland dress, Newhaven Fishwives' outfits and others for sitters
to wear. John McManus would be likely to have seen a lot of tourists
passing his studios in the High Street, so costumes might have been
popular - though none of the subjects in the six cartes de
visite that I have from his studio appears to be wearing such outfits.
- Peter Stubbs)
"OK, in conclusion I think the
consensus is just that. It is a mock-up."
Stuart Bates: SW of Melbourne, Victoria,
December 6, 2011