Crested china binoculars : First World War

Place Europe: United Kingdom, Scotland, Fife, Rosyth
Accession Number REL23600
Collection type Technology
Object type Optical equipment
Physical description China
Maker Shelley China
Place made United Kingdom: England
Date made c 1914-1918
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

China souvenir binoculars, made to stand upright. On the front of is the coat of arms for Rosyth, Scotland.The bottom of the binoculars is stamped 'SHELLEY CHINA / 343 / Rd. No. 662650'. Parts of the binoculars have gilded highlights.

History / Summary

Crested china collecting became a craze in the Victorian period when tourists bought small ivory coloured porcelain ornaments decorated with the coats of arms of the towns they visited to take home as a souvenir. Before the First World War companies (the most famous and the original being Goss crested china) made collectibles such as vases, plates and other crockery, houses, public buildings, cars and replicas of visitor attractions. During the war the range of souvenirs was expanded to include military caps, equipment and vehicles. Rosyth is a town located on the Firth of Forth in Scotland. Rosyth Naval Base was a major repair base for Royal Navy ships during the First World War.