This blog is a companion to the Database of Volunteers of Essendon and Flemington

Monday, June 21, 2010

Caring for your wartime memorabilia

The Department of Veterans Affairs has a very useful looking online book about caring for wartime memorabilia.

Printed copies are available, apparently, but it doesn't spell out whether there is a cost for that, or who is eligible to apply, but there's an email address for enquiries.


  1. Aaaaah - what a seg-way, and I can't even remember how to spell it. Good online advice in it on how to clean medals. I guess, since it seems aimed at veterans, that they don't expect any to be around any more with lighthorse saddles over their arms.

    Would love to know how many of them are around - suspect there would be a few.

  2. I would think there would be quite a few in the collecting community and probably military museums like Bandiana. At Essendon we once had a talk from a fellow who had managed to assemble a complete Light Horse kit - not from one source, but piece by piece - and I'm guessing that there would be plenty of people around who have done that. Whether the saddles end up in Museums is another story, because they are valuable.

    Now that I think of it, PROV had a fabulous exhibition a few years about animals which worked for the government. All sorts of animals - dung beetles, drug dogs, courier pigeons, and of course Light Horse. Not that they had a horse, but they had the full kit. Unbelievable what the poor old horse had to carry. It would have been a very Heavy Horse when fully loaded.

    I don't know why they wouldn't expect leather items to be around. One of the items in the Essendon collection is a pair of leather gaiters from someone I think was a Driver, from memory. But I guess it is meant for the WW2 community.

  3. Hi Lenore,

    Gaiters are everywhere - not sure how long they stayed around, they may have made it into WWII - but there were definitely drivers in WWI. And mobile traffic police were still wearing them into, I think, the early 1980s.

    Lots of unwanted gaiters out there - almost as many as sewing machines and typewriters.

  4. No, no, not nearly as many gaiters as sewing machines and typewriters! The gaiters at Essendon are WW1. There might be WW2 leather flying jackets around, perhaps, the odd flying helmet.