In the collections of the Essex Police Museum, there are three pastel drawings by J Cattell, 1915.
However nothing is known about the artist, where the pastels came from and how they ended up with the Essex Police Museum.
Museum Curator, Becky Wash, explains:
It is part of a series of three pastels by J Cattell dated 1915. I’ve tried to do quick research on the artist but didn’t find anything. The three pastel series are named ‘A Specials Constable’s First Night Out’ and also on display in the museum are ‘The Ghost’ (two Special constables find what looks like a ghost in chains which turns out to be a horse) and the rather humorous ‘Love?’ where two Specials find what looks like a burglar breaking through a window but actually it’s just a man getting a cheeky kiss from his lady, through the window – the result is she knocks her tea flying when the specials pull him out of the window!
They are unlikely to be ‘Essex’ Special Constables as the Specials are wearing uniforms and Essex Specials were only issued with an armband, no hat or coat – although could be Colchester or Southend based – we don’t know. There’s not much history behind them where they came from etc.
Can you help in any way? Or do you know someone who might be able to help? We’d love to hear from you if you think you can solve this History Mystery!