Everyday Things from World War Two

Everyday Things from World War Two

Here are a set of pictures of objects used by people in the Second World War. If you click on the first picture you can make it go bigger, then you can go through all the pictures at that size by clicking "Next". We are grateful to the owners for allowing us to photograph their collection. Historian and collector Tony Brown has helped us with the captions for these pictures.  Please scroll down to see the pictures.


 
Image collection
This is a Home Guard or Soldier's Gas Mask. The bag was carried on the person's chest and should have a cord or tape that was tied roung their back to keep it in place. These masks were designed to be much more powerful than those given to ordinary people, so that the Air Raid Warden would stay alive longer in a gas attack. Why do you think this was?
This is a Home Guard or Soldier's Gas Mask. The bag was carried on the person's chest and should have a cord or tape that was tied roung their back to keep it in place. These masks were designed to be much more powerful than those given to ordinary people, so that the Air Raid Warden would stay alive longer in a gas attack. Why do you think this was?
 
An Air Raid Warden's Steel Helmet, this was really thick and heavy to protect this important person.
An Air Raid Warden's Steel Helmet, this was really thick and heavy to protect this important person.
 
Here is an Air Raid Warden's Whistle, used to get people listening. The lapel badge on the right has the letters ARP on it. ARP meant Air Raid Protection. The badge is made from silver and evacuees tell us that this was because whilst most other metals were being used to make weapons, silver was not used for these and so was easier to get. The Button on the left of the photo is a Civil Defence Corps tunic button.
Here is an Air Raid Warden's Whistle, used to get people listening. The lapel badge on the right has the letters ARP on it. ARP meant Air Raid Protection. The badge is made from silver and evacuees tell us that this was because whilst most other metals were being used to make weapons, silver was not used for these and so was easier to get. The Button on the left of the photo is a Civil Defence Corps tunic button.
 
This was a Gas Mask for a baby. Mothers had to get their babies into these as soon as the Gas Warning was sounded. The baby lay on a steel frame that held the helmet piece open. it was very heavy and mothers had to pump filtered air in using the hand pump at the bottom of the photo. Would you have liked to be put in one of these? It smells of rubber and the chemicals in the gas filters.
This was a Gas Mask for a baby. Mothers had to get their babies into these as soon as the Gas Warning was sounded. The baby lay on a steel frame that held the helmet piece open. it was very heavy and mothers had to pump filtered air in using the hand pump at the bottom of the photo. Would you have liked to be put in one of these? It smells of rubber and the chemicals in the gas filters.
 
This is a young child's Gas Mask. Why do you think it was made in bright colours?
This is a young child's Gas Mask. Why do you think it was made in bright colours?
 
This is a Civil Defence Armband often used when the full uniform could not be given out.
This is a Civil Defence Armband often used when the full uniform could not be given out.
 
This is a First Aid Party Steel Helmet. What do you think First Aiders were needed for in the bombing? Why do you think their helmets were white?
This is a First Aid Party Steel Helmet. What do you think First Aiders were needed for in the bombing? Why do you think their helmets were white?
 
This is a gas mask issued to ordinary people. The gas filters are in the green, white and black metal tube at the front. Look at this gas mask and the Air Raid Warden's one, what are the differences?
This is a gas mask issued to ordinary people. The gas filters are in the green, white and black metal tube at the front. Look at this gas mask and the Air Raid Warden's one, what are the differences?
 
This is a Heavy Duty Gas Mask which was issued to Air Raid Wardens and Civil Defence workers.<br />
<br />
This is a Heavy Duty Gas Mask which was issued to Air Raid Wardens and Civil Defence workers.

 
This is a Steel Helmet. If they could get one ordinary people used these not so much to protect them from bombing, but often to save them from British Anti-Aircraft gunfire. Why do you think this was? A clue is in the words, that which goes up must come down.
This is a Steel Helmet. If they could get one ordinary people used these not so much to protect them from bombing, but often to save them from British Anti-Aircraft gunfire. Why do you think this was? A clue is in the words, that which goes up must come down.
 
Here is an Air Raid Warden's Gas Warning Rattle. If Wardens were warned that a Gas Attack was likely they had to put on their own gas mask and then run up and down their street, twirling this and making a very loud noise. When people heard the noise they had to put their gas masks on too.
Here is an Air Raid Warden's Gas Warning Rattle. If Wardens were warned that a Gas Attack was likely they had to put on their own gas mask and then run up and down their street, twirling this and making a very loud noise. When people heard the noise they had to put their gas masks on too.
 
 
 



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