Bundles for Britain memorabilia

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Bundles for Britain ......... Prior to Americans entering into WWII, the American people donated money to the victims of the European War.  This shouldn't surprise anyone given the fact that we are such a charitable nation; however, there is one organization who has probably been long forgotten but its ghosts still remain…….  

Wealthy American citizens who had relatives in Britain, would send money over-seas to help support their families.  Since the overwhelming need for supplies and money grew, charities were started all over America to help the British people.  One of the charities that began was “Bundles for Britain”.   It was organized by Mrs. Wales Latham who was a New York Society Matron.  Mrs. Winston Churchhill asked all English women to knit garments for the British soldiers fighting on the North Sea.  Mrs. Latham responded to this request in America and started a circle of women who began to knit items for these soldiers.

This endeavor was such a success, the realm of knitting grew into a larger market.  Soon souvenir/products were made and distributed to the fine department stores in America for the American public to purchase. These products included matchbooks, pins, compacts, cigarette cases, plates, brooches and more. They would display the lion and shield "British War Relief Emblem".  They usually featured the French motto "Dieu et mon Droit".  Translated as "God and my right", this motto appears on the British Royal crest.  Items were marked or labelled on the back as either "Official Bundles for Britain" or, more commonly, "Official BWRS and BB".  There were some plates (such as the one pictured here) that were made made by the famous manufacturerer "Steubenville" and are fully stamped on the back.  The proceeds from the purchases of the “Bundles for Britain” products, were sent to England to help support her people.  

Today, if you're lucky, you may come across some items that were produced and bought 70 years ago to support this cause.  Wouldn't it be great to have a collection of such "ghosts" of the past?

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