This week’s Big Friday Find really was an exciting find, for us at least. As we are currently based at the Greater Manchester County Record Office most of our Friday Finds come from their collections and as an archive it contains mostly manuscripts, documents and photographs so it’s always nice to happen upon an object or two.

So you can imagine our excitement (or mine at least) when we were digging through a box of photographs and documents belonging to our Documentary Photographic Archive Collection, intending to find items relating to the Italian Community in Manchester that would be of use in our exhibition, and we came across two World War 1 service medals.

The British War Medal, 1914-1918, and the Allied Victory Medal, were often awarded together and given the nickname “Mutt and Jeff“.

The British War Medal
The British War Medal
The Allied Victory Medal
The Allied Victory Medal

The British War medal was awarded to officers and men of the British and Imperial Forces who either served overseas during the First World War (between 5th August 1914 and 11th November 1918).

The British War Medal

The Allied Victory Medal was issued by all of the allies to their own men. Made from bronze each allies’ medal would have a different design but would be similar, have equivalent wording and an identical ribbon.

The Allied Victory Medal

Both medals had the recipients name, rank and service number impressed on the rim.

These medals belonged to Thomas Reavey, a Sapper in the Royal Engineers who came from Crumpsall in North Manchester. Using Ancestry.com we were able to find the Medal Roll Index Card which proved that these medals belonged to him.

Medal Roll Index Card from Ancestry.com

Look out for a future blog about Spr Reavey in the future.

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