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World War 1 Military Medals memorabilia and collectables
Why we Must Remember
Medals are awarded for bravery, being part of a military campaign, for service and some are commemorative.
When I see veterans wearing their medals I feel a sense of pride in their achievements in making the world a safer place. These small metal and ribbon acknowledgements are a permanent reminder of the service men and woman did for their country.
There are very few who still remember World War 1and the wearing of medals by WW1 veterans no longer happens, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t still remember the conflict and the contributions of a former generation. Relatives are entitled to wear and take pride in wearing the military honours of their parent, grandparents or other relatives.
I believe that remembering our heroes through memorials, museum displays and anniversary parades are an important part of our heritage. We have a duty to remember their sacrifices.
Memorabilia and collectibles extend beyond the military to include the impact of the war on civilians and life back home.
Your Country Needs You
World War 1 was a global conflict involving many nations between 1914 to 1918 and was also known as 'The Great War' and 'The War to end all Wars.'
No war whatever the justification can claim Greatness and assertions that it was a War to end all Wars were sadly mistaken. There was however greatness displayed during this conflict. Greatness in the sprit of men, woman and nations in their steadfastness, resilience and determination to do what they thought was right. I will leave it to historians to debate the rights and wrongs of the conflict. Clearly many mistakes were made and millions died during the war years.
Brief resume of various declarations of war by the countries involved in the 1st World War
On the 28th June 1914 Austrian archduke Francis Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo by Bosnian revolutionary Gavrilo Princip a member of a Bosnia movement made up of Serbs, Croats, and Bosnian Muslims, committed to the independence of the South Slavic peoples from Austria-Hungary.
Following a declaration of German support for Austria against Serbia by Kaiser William II Austria declared war on Serbia on the 28th July 1914
Within days Germany declared war on Russia on the 1st August 1914 and on the 3rd August 1914 Germany declared war on France and invaded Belgium.
On the 4th August 1914 Britain declared war on Germany consequential to events which started in Sarajevo.
On the 29th October 1914 Turkey entered the war on Germany's side.
On the 6th April 1917 the USA entered the affray and declared war on Germany.
On the 11th November 1918 (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month) Germany signed an armistice with the Allies. This is the official day that the war ended.
Symbolism is Important
Without road traffic signs there would be confusion on the roads. The sound of an ambulance siren attending the scene of an accident reassures us that medical help is on the way. A police officers uniform enables us to pick them out from a crowd. Football, baseball and all sports teams wear different colours with different badges or identifying features. Our world is full of symbols and they provide us with information about our world and many of use choose to identify our allegiance to our country, sports team or organisation by displaying symbols. I have always admired the way that many Americans proudly display their national flag either on poles or lapel badges.
War between Nations and Symbolism
Opposing armies have different styles of uniform, different weapons and numerous different symbols as to their identity. When one side defeats the other either in a small skirmish or large battle is it any wonder that the winners would seek to recover those images and symbols of the enemy to demonstrate that their symbols of identity and values are the stronger.
Is it not also right that we should honour the actions of those that fought and died for our freedom by retaining and displaying those symbols of freedom, duty and identity.
The Battle of the Somme
The Battle of the Somme commenced on the 24th June 1916 with artillery bombardment of German bunkers and fortifications, which continued for eight days.
On the 1st July 1916 a total of 27 divisions comprising of over 750,000 men attacked the German positions. This day was to set the most awful record for loss in a single battle with nearly 20,000 men killed in one day. The final death toll before the battle was called off on the 18th November 1916 was close to 60,000
Territorial gain is always an objective in any conflict, particularly the seizing and holding of tactical positions to restrict and hinder enemy options, support and supply routes. Territorial gain was the secondary objective in this offensive launched upon a 30-kilometre front, from north of the Somme River between Arras and Albert. Its primary objective was to drain the German forces of reserves and to destroy enemy moral by attrition and erosion of the Germany military command.