One of the most exciting aspects of Somerset Remembers is the chance to rediscover objects, collections and archives connected to the First World War, many of which will not have been seen by the public before.
This framed certificate has recently been unearthed from the stores. Presented to Alberta Field in 1919, it celebrates the role she played in collecting eggs for wounded soldiers and sailors during the war.
In August 1915 a national scheme was established to collect eggs to feed the growing numbers of wounded servicemen. Members of the public were asked to commit to donating a certain number of eggs each week or to give an equivalent amount of money. The eggs were dispatched to military hospitals where they were given to wounded soldiers and sailors.
As the illustrations on the certificate suggest, the collection and distribution of eggs was often carried out by women and children. They often wrote their names and addresses on them – and some even decorated them! This meant soldiers and sailors were able to send letters of thanks to those who donated the eggs.
The scheme was hugely successful. Between 1914 and 1919 over 41,000,000 eggs were collected.
This certificate is part of the North Somerset Council collection which is stored and cared for at the Somerset Heritage Centre and displayed at the Weston-super-Mare Museum.