What a wonderful entertaining afternoon we had when Grace Davies gave a display entitled ‘Peace – Pages from a Collection.’ Peace is a broad theme and Grace brought 200 pages and a PowerPoint presentation to illustrate its many aspects. The material was deliberately varied to provide something for everybody even if not interested in Thematics. Stamps, postal history, First Day covers, letters, postcards, Cinderella items, Posters, original artwork of all sorts; it was all there for the viewing.
Grace started with Peace at the end of War, with material celebrating the end of the Boer War, WW1 and WW2. After wars there are usually Peace Conferences which if successful lead to Treaties, and Grace illustrated several from 1919 – 1952. There have been major international attempts to prevent war as exemplified by The Peace Movement, the League of Nations and finally the United Nations. We learned the locations for the UN General Assembly from its first meeting in Central Hall Westminster to its current HQ in New York. To end the first half Grace read the preamble to the new UN Charter of 1945.
The second half was lighter, less political. Peace Associated with other Ideas gave us the 1995 Peace and Freedom issue from Gibraltar with all its artwork. We saw the allegorical figures of Peace and other symbols including the wonderful Peace Rose. Peace as a Name gave plenty of interesting variety including the sad story of the airship ‘Pax’ which in 1902 crashed over Paris on its maiden flight, and a section on hotels of that name.
The last few frames illustrated Alfred Nobel, his remarkable will leaving almost all his large fortune for the establishment of five annual prizes, and a selection of the Peace Laureates from 1901 to 2007. Grace ended by reading a letter to her from John Hume, laureate in 1998, describing the importance of the Nobel Prize.