The Army Museum maintains a unique collection of souvenirs sent home from the front line, as well as souvenirs acquired by soldiers on their travels or sent by family to loved ones fighting overseas.
Going away to war was in some ways like any other trip that took you away from home for an extended period. Sending back a memento from the war front was a way of bridging the distance, of keeping the connection to family and friends. The souvenirs in our collection range from handkerchiefs and wall hangings, to sweetheart pins, to postcards - of places visited, of studio portraits, as well as embroidered and hand-painted commemorative postcards.
Loved ones back home were just as eager to stay in touch. Besides letters and cards, this collection includes small needlepointed linens, tobacco and biscuit tins sent from the homefront.
Of special interest is our collection of Princess Mary tins. Princess Mary was the seventeen year old daughter of King George V and Queen Mary. She raised funds to create Christmas gifts for every person wearing the Kings Uniform on Christmas Day, 1914. These specially designed tins included tobacco with a lighter or sweets, along with a Christmas Card.
To view any special collection in its entirety, we ask that you contact The Army Museum in advance to book a private appointment with the curator or member of the museum staff. If you are unable to visit us in person, you can explore our collection online with NovaMuse.