Trench art tea bell : Sapper S K Pearl, 5 Field Company Engineers, AIF

Place Europe: Belgium, Flanders, West-Vlaanderen, Ypres
Accession Number RELAWM14154
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Trench Art
Physical description Brass; Steel
Maker Pearl, Stanley Keith
Place made Belgium: Flanders, West-Vlaanderen, Ypres
Date made February 1918
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Trench art tea bell. The bell is made from part of an 18 pounder nose cap The handle is a French small arms cartridge surmounted by part of a .303 Lee-Enfield rifle bolt. A brass British general service button is attached to the handle. There is a plain brass German button between the bell and the handle. The clapper is made from a shrapnel ball attached to steel wire. The side of the bell is impressed 'S S L' within a triangle, and the rifle bolt with a broad arrow.

History / Summary

This tea bell is part of a collection of trench art made by 6756 Sapper Stanley Keith Pearl, a Tasmanian who served with 5 Field Company Engineers, AIF. He enlisted for service on 9 November 1915 and returned to Australia on 21 March 1919. Pearl subsequently moved to Canberra and was employed by the Australian War Memorial as a carpenter. He supplied the following information about the bell 'Made at Ypres in February 1918. The gong is one of many 18-pounder brass nose-caps tested for tone among the shell dumps in the Ypres area. The handle is a French cartridge with German and British buttons, while the bolt handle was sawn off the maker's own rifle to supply a suitable grip.' The bell originally sat on a separate base but this is missing.