Sunday 27 January 2019

Images of the National Archives Armistice - Review

Louise Bell

Pen & Sword, £14.99

As Louise Bell notes in her introduction to this slim but useful volume, "This book will highlight key documents from the collections at The National Archives relating to the Armistice and the aftermath of the First World War. Many of these images will have been rarely seen and will provide key glimpses into what was happening in 1918 and beyond."

And so they do. This paperback book only runs to 132 pages but there are some extremely useful chapters on treaties, demobilisation, women's uniformed services, disability, Peace Day, The Unknown Warrior and The Cenotaph.

I have to admit to being a bit of a cenotaph nut.I have collected hundreds of postcards of the cenotaph over the years and so learning more about its evolution and the different cenotaph versions worldwide is always going to find a ready audience with me. But I also found the chapter on disability extremely informative and thought-provoking and, since reading this book, I have made my own forays into the LAB (labour) files at The National Archives which Louise Bell references.

I regard this useful book as a platform for further study, and as such I will definitely be returning to it again, and again...