WW1 Souvenir Anvil

Thomas Owen Ambler was born at the turn of the twentieth century in either late 1899 or early 1900. He joined the Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment during the First World War and was awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal before being discharged to the class Z reserves on the penultimate day of December, 1919. During his time in the army, Private Ambler produced a small memento of his service in the form of a small anvil and hammer:

This is made from a white metal, probably pewter, and Private Owen has recorded his details of the front, with his name, rank, service number, regiment and that he was in France:

The top of the anvil is marked ‘souvenir’:

The rear has the date of 1919:

This was probably a commercially cast little anvil that was sold to soldiers to add their own embellishments to. It is accompanied by a small cast hammer, somewhat cruder and less well finished than the anvil itself:

My father picked up this little souvenir on a charity stall in Halifax for a pound about twenty five years ago and it has sat on his mantle shelf ever since, a small token of this man’s service. My thanks go to my father for permission to include this little piece on the blog.

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