Source Material Related to

Arthur Gladdish Trevenen James (1915-2004)

This page catalogues material relating to my mother's second brother, Wing-Commander A.G. Trevenen James (known as Trev to his family, and as Jimmy to his friends) and his wife Ernestina W.S. van Gesseler Verschuir (1916-2017) (known as Doekel to her family and as Nini to her friends). The catalogue includes material held by their daughter Astrid Garran, as well as by myself and by some other members of his extended family, and a few publicly available items.
John Barnard
Updated 6 November 2022

Summary of Main Material

Pilot's Flying Log Books

Photograph Albums


The remaining items include loose photographs and miscellaneous ephemera.

Full Catalogue

& Link
Description Location
AGTJ-1 A.G.T. James, Some Future Spring. Original typescript book drafts (various copies) with manuscript amendments and insertions.  Original copies held by various family members
Summary comparison of different versions prepared by John Barnard, Aug 2019
Copy A - omits chapters B17 and C11-C14 and has short Epilogue
Held by Astrid Garran
Copy B - omits Prologue and chapters C11-C14 and has separate Epilogue
Held by John Barnard
Copy C - later version; has expanded Prologue, omits chapter A1, has chapters A2-A11 retyped and renumbered C1-C10, omits chapters A12-A18 and has additional chapters C11-C14 and expanded Epilogue
Held by Julien Garran
Copy D (contains no material not in either or both Copy A and Copy B)
Held by Astrid Garran
Copy E
Held by Brian Harrisson
AGTJ-2 A.G.T. James, Towards the Stars. A Career in the Royal Air Force. Typescript memoirs marked "Master Copy" (bound typescript 255pp) Original copy held by John Barnard
AGTJ-3 Funeral and eulogies for AGTJ's wife, Nini (nee van Gesseler Verschuir), held at Salisbury Crematorium 3 Jul 2017
Order of Service
Original copy held by John Barnard
Biography by Nini's daughter Astrid Garran
Original copy held by John Barnard
Appreciation by Nini's grandson Julien Garran
Copy held by John Barnard
AGTJ-4 A. G. Trevenen James, The Royal Air Force: The Past 30 Years. London, Macdonald and Jane's, 1976. With inscription to the author's sister Pascha and brother-in-law Mordo Barnard, Christmas 1976. [See also AGTJ/28] Original copy held by John Barnard
AGTJ-5 Photo of English Pubic Schools Fencing Championships from Daily Telegraph, 7 Apr 1934 showing AGTJ seated on right. Original cutting held by John Barnard
AGTJ-6 Manuscript poem by AGTJ, "Invocation to Rain, Miranshah Fort, 18 May 1938" [See AGTJ/26 for other poems] Original held by John Barnard
AGTJ-7 Manuscript letter from AGTJ at Westminster School to his parents, 4 Jun 1933. Describes fencing match against Winchester College, christening of "The Pentreath's" baby [Rev. Guy Pentreath (1902-1985) who was master of the King's Scholars at Westminster, 1930-34]; [brother] Bob's appetite and swimming activities; enquiry as to "Beardie's" [the James family gardener) luck [in betting on] the Derby; a monitor's success is placing first four horses in Daily Mail competition with £2000 prize and hope that the headmaster does not hear about it. Original held by John Barnard
AGTJ-8 Manuscript letter from AGTJ in India to his parents, 12 and 13 Jan 1942, with transcript. Ordered to Bangalore on Christmas Eve for meeting with Americans; Jack Phelps visited Doekel in Peshawar for Christmas; visited Poppette Sleightholme (mother of AGTJ's god-daughter) in Delhi; likely to be posted to Burma with brief visit to Peshawar first; Doekel reports [morning] sickness now over; confidence in final outcome [of war] in Pacific theatre; hope to be back in old India in time for "great event" [birth of first child]; letter received from Huck. [First four pages in pencil, last two in ink] Original held by John Barnard
AGTJ-9 Album of photographs of AGTJ's wedding in Delhi on 1 April 1940. Inscribed by AGTJ "For dad on his birthday 11 July 1940, with love and good wishes from Doekel and Trev, his first daughter-in-law and second son".  [23cm x 16.5cm, 13 photos with captions; grey carboard with cord binding. One page with photographs of the guard of honour outside the church appears to have been removed, but is present in the otherwise identical AGT/35, along with a newspaper cutting from The Statesman] Original held by John Barnard
AGTJ-10 3 mounted wedding photos (none of which appear in the AGTJ/9 album). [N.B. an additional wedding photograph, not found elsewhere, is in Pascha James's album PTJ/1 and has been included the scanned PDF file linked here] Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-11 Telegram dated 19 May 1942 reporting birth of Astrid James "Cable per arduaadastrid at nine oclock 12 may doekel became mother i father of nine pounds of daughter have spoken on long distance phone to someone who has seen both looking wonderful so it must be true" [This telegram was sent from Paignton to "James c/o Canon Frank Hutchinson, the College, Worcester Cathedral", so is presumably Ethel forwarding the news to Lionel who was visiting Worcester] Original held by John Barnard
AGTJ-12 Photographs of baby Astrid James, some with her mother or father Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-13 Photographs of Astrid James as a young girl, one with her father Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-14 Photo of AGTJ with members of his Bomber Crew (3 identical prints). [The same image also appears on page 24 of photograph album AGTJ/19.]  Original prints held by John Barnard
  1. Photograph of AGTJ in jacket and tie, probably late 1940s / early 1950s
  2. Photograph of Ethel James with Doekel's parents, probably late 1940s / early 1950s
Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-16 Photographs of wedding of Astrid James to Robin Garran, Feb 1967 (mainly of the bridesmaids) Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-17 Photographs of AGTJ's grandson Julien Garran as a small boy. One with his mother Astrid, one with Anne and John Barnard taken at 125 Harley Street Original prints held by John Barnard
AGTJ-18 "Photograph Album No. 1 (1936-1939)". Contains pages numbered 5-6, and 9-20 (i.e. 1-4 and 7-8 missing). Photos from RAF service on Indian Northwest Frontier 1937-1939, Calcutta 1943, Quetta 1941, and 578 Squadron at Burn, Yorkshire 1944-5 (including "get well" postcard from his bomber crew, Feb 1945, with signatures on reverse) [29 cm x 33cm, blue cover]. Negatives for some of the photos are included in AGTJ/43. Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-19 "Photograph Album No. 3 (July 1941 onwards)". Photos from Quetta 1941, Simla 1942 (Astrid as a baby), Calcutta, darjeeling 1943, Upper Boddington 1944, Burn 1945, Bigbury, Paignton Sep 1943, Holland 1946, visit to Pearson cousins 1946, Germany 1950 [37cm x 29cm, brown cover]. Separate prints of the photograph of AGTJ with his 578 Squadron bomber crewon page 24 are also held as AGTJ/14. Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-20 James arms and crest painted on wood by A.G. Trevenen James (age 15) and given to his father Lionel James for his 63rd birthday. Inscribed on back "To Dad, love Trev 1931 July 11th" Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-21 List of Trev and Nini's 32 different homes during his RAF career 1940-1960. Compiled by RCT James 8 Aug 2003 [one page typescript] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-22 Copy of The Golden Treasury of the Best Songs and Lyrical Poems in the English Language selected and arranged with notes by Francis Turner Palgrave (London: OUP, 1926). Presented to AGTJ as an English Prize from Brighton College Preparatory School, 25 July 1929 [Images of title page and inscription taken Aug 2019] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-23 AGTJ's Pilot's Flying Log Book, with entries from 10 May 1935 to 27 Sep 1937 (from 14 Nov 1936 with 20 (Army Cooperation) Squadron, India (Peshawar). [Image of cover taken Aug 2019] See also AGTJ/46. Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-24 Copy of The Sayings of Confucius given to AGTJ by his brother RCT James, with inscription: "AGTJ. To the willy-nilly official who, having time to spare, wisely devotes it to study, from the student who, when he has time to spare, tries to devote it to public affairs. RJ, April 1945" [Images of cover and inscription taken Aug 2019] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-25 [Not assigned - duplicate of AGTJ/19]
AGTJ-26 Album of AGTJ's poems, written in the mid 1960s or early 1970s, along with accompanying photographs. 19 poems are included, 12 of them in sonnet form. [See also AGTJ/6] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ-27 Photos of Nini James on her 100th birthday, 4 December 2016. With daughter Astrid Garran and great-granddaughter Georgia Garran Scanned images assembled by John Barnard
AGTJ-28 Review of AGTJ's The Royal Air Force: the Past Thirty Years [AGTJ-4] in Flight International, 2 Apr 1977, p. 828, and AGTJ's response to its critical comments in letter to the editor, Flight International, 23 Apr 1977, pp. 1147-8. Scanned extracts assembled by John Barnard
AGTJ-29 Extract from Westminster School Grants House Ledger 1931-39: Head of House's report (3pp) on Election (summer) Term 1934 by Geoffrey Dervas Everington (1915-1982 - he later had a distinguished career as a patent lawyer and QC). Several references to AGTJ including summary of school career and complimentary remarks on his role as a monitor. Also brief reference to AGTJ's younger brother ("James R") Scanned copy of MS provided by Westminster School Archivist, Feb 2021
AGTJ/30 "Photograph Album No. 2 (summer 1937 - summer 1941)". Photos from 1939 home leave (visits to Holland and Cornwall), engagement party, wedding, honeymoon, Simla summer 1940, Delhi Sep 1940 - Apr 1941, sailing in "Bay of Bom" [28.5cm x 37cm, brown cover repaired with tape] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/31 Photograph Album: USA 1947-1948. Also contains photos from Sicily (including visit to Taormina) and England 1950 (visit to E.J. Nicholls) [32cm x 34cm, red cover, cord binding largely disintegrated, and pages fragile] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/32 Photograph Album: Germany, France etc. 1950-1958. Including photos from Austria, Pakistan, Italy, Portugal, Athens (1961), Cyprus (1970) and a few from later in the 1970s. [42cm x 31cm, green cover, most pages loose, 31 numbered double pages, plus 3 additional un-numbered pages at back] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/33 Photograph album: mainly 1950s, including Isle of Man, Waddeston; mainly photos of Nini and of Astrid, some of Jack Karran [24cm x 30cm, bound, with brown paper wrapper in poor condition; colour photos badly faded] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/34 Photograph album "Oma's Album". Photos of Astrid as a baby, America 1947-48, Sicily 1949, The old Forge 1952-54, Geneva 1955, Holland 1946, Henley 1949 (with Pascha James and Huck James), Nini as a child, Waddeston Manor, Oma and Opa [Nini's parents] [19cm x 24cm, bound with grey board and green leather spine] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/35 Album of photographs of AGTJ's wedding in Delhi on 1 April 1940. Inscribed "To Mummy and daddy with all our love, for making it possible, Doekel & Trev, on my return to Holland after 6 long years". Photographs identical to those in AGTJ/9, with the addition of two images of the guard of honour outside the church, and newspaper cutting from "The Statesman" containing brief report on the wedding [23cm x 16.5cm, grey cardboard, bound with cord (front cover detached)] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/36 Album of photographs from wedding of Trev and Nini's daughter Astrid to Robin Garran, 18 Feb 1967. Including order of service etc, and photos of honeymoon in Maderia, with various family letters inserted at back. Few photos of wedding guests other than immediate families of bride and groom. [30cm x 32cm, green cover] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/37 Framed portrait photo of AGTJ in RAF uniform, circa 1937, with name of Delhi photographer [22cm x 29cm, lower border of frame missing] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/38 Framed portrait photo of AGTJ in uniform as trainee pilot, circa 1935 [12cm x 17cm] Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/39 Set of 26 photo prints in envelope marked "Westminster", probably 1930s. Including various unidentified people (poosble members of James family), and views of Westminster School, and of an airship (possibly the Graf Zeppelin) Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/40 39 photo prints, marked "Miscellaneous" and "Home and Holiday". Probably 1930s. Including James family members, some at Moyses. Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/41 Set of postcards sent by Nini to Trev, 1936-1939
  1. 7 Sep 1936 from Vienna, Austria; comments on poverty of city
  2. 3 Jan 1938 from Los Angeles, CA
  3. 4 Feb 1938 from Death Valley, CA
  4. 9 Apr 1938 from San Francisco, CA
  5. 22 Apr 1938 from Eureka, CA
  6. 22 Aug 1939 from Netherlands
Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/42 Photo of AGTJ with a horse (presumably Rosinante). Inscribed on back "A rest in the shade of the Tamarinds, to cool down, and a lump of sugar for the horse Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/43 5 sets of photographic negatives from Waziristan, labelled 1938 and 1939.
  • Positive proof-sheet images taken from scans of sets AGTJ/43/1 to AGT/43/4, but those in set AGTJ/43/5 could not be scanned successfully (though they appear to be good and clear when held against the light). 
  • Some of the images are included in Photograh Album No. 1 [AGTJ/18]. 
  • Set AGTJ/43/4 contains an image of the Taj Mahal (AGTJ/43/4/10), presumably taken at the end of AGTJ's bicycle pilgrimage there.
Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/44 Photo of Nini van Gesseler Verschuir, inscribed on back "Engagement day! 4 Dec 1939" (her 23rd birthday) Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/45 Miscellaneous items from Trev and Nini's wedding
  1. Official printed invitation from Major & Mrs W.R.W. Weallens (RSVP to Flt-Lt. G.A.L. Cheatle)
  2. Printed order of service
  3. Photo of wedding party including Major & Mrs Weallens (hosts), bridesmaid (Patricia Anne Drake), "father of the bride" (Tony Cheatle), Best Man (Leslie Cryer), Bride and Groom
  4. Photo of guard of honour
  5. Photo of bridesmaid with bride and groom
Held by Astrid Garran
AGTJ/46 AGTJ's pilot's logbook covering period 1937-1955. Images available at . See also AGTJ/23. Original held by collector Bobbie Joe Grew
AGTJ/47 Record of AGTJ's RAF service 1935 to 1955. Copied from inside back cover of AGTJ/46 logbook, with annotations dated 1 Dec 2020 [Image 3336 at] Held by Bobbie Joe Grew
AGTJ/48 AGTJ's service medals: OBE, North West Frontier Medal 1936-37; 1939-1945 Star; Burma Star; France and Germany Star; Defence Medal 1939-45; War Medal 1939-45 [Images 3259, 3262 and 3263 at] Originals held by collector Bobbie Joe Grew
AGTJ/49 Citation for AGTJ's work as Wing Commander, Organisation, RAF No. 221 Group Headquarters [Calcutta, 1942-3] "He has had the responsibility of the organisation of group headquarters, the various ancilliary units and formations in Calcutta and the many stations which have been formed in Bengal. He has completed his tasks in the face of almost insuperable difficulties, working long hours throughout a record hot weather season. It is largely due to this officer's untiring efforts and unstinting devotion to duty that the various organisations have been able to function with smoothness and efficiency." [Image 3265 at] Held by Bobbie Joe Grew
AGTJ-50Unframed portrait photo of AGTJ in RAF UniformHeld by John Barnard
AGTJ-51Royal Air Force 578 Squadron Operations Book. TNA reference AIR 27/2050 (available for digital download) []. AIR 27/2050/16 (digital image 52) contains records for August 1944, including bombing raid over Brest on 25 Aug 1944 described in AGTJ/1.Original held at the National Archives
AGTJ-52Hugh Cawdron, Based at Burn Mk II. 578 Burn Association (2nd Edition, 2001) ISBN  978-0952531715. [A history of 578 Squadron and its first commander David Wilkerson; AGTJ's poem "Bomber Crew" appears on p. 233]
AGTJ-53Andrew Roe, "Friends in high places: air power on the North-West Frontier of India", Air Power Review, 11 (2), 30-43 (2008). [Article giving background information on the Waziristan campaign in which AGTJ participated in the late 1930s]