The conviction last month of a British SAS soldier for keeping a pistol and live ammunition from his tours in Iraq has thrown a spotlight on war trophies. Couple this with the cultural sensitivities around conflict, and you ask yourself are collecting war relics and souvenirs now a thing of the past?
The taking home of trophies has always been part of military history. As long as there will be wars, deep rooted human nature means trophies will be sought. From German helmets from WW1 and WW2, engraved shell cases from Sarajevo, to Argentine weapons from the Falklands, there is a long tradition of bringing back belongings and artifacts from the battlefield.
The lesson from the soldiers conviction is not that collecting war relics is a thing of the past and is becoming outlawed, but to make sure that items retained are not dangerous, illegal or offensive.
Here is our July news digest.
5 Picks of D-Day Paratrooper Militaria
So far in our news we’ve resisted writing about D-Day Airborne relics largely as they seem to be well covered everwhere else. We’ve all seen the Hollywood portrayals of the beach landings in Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers and go to any military event and there are no shortages of enthusiastic re-enactors dressed as WW2 airborne troops. Reproductions of Airborne gear are easy to come by and the threat of paying a lot of money for a highly deceptive reproduction dilutes the appeal of collecting original artifacts. The original afterall is the one that can ‘talk’.
ONE ADVANTAGE of running a militaria marketplace online is that every month we get hard facts on what collectors are looking for through their militaria searches.
As well as attracting thousands of visitors looking for militaria in general, our 20 conflict themed websites ensure we attract thousands more focussed on collecting relics from specific conflicts. Demand for relics from World War 2, the Great war and the Vietnam War remains the top by some margin, but demand for pre-20th Century conflicts is surprisingly getting stronger every quarter.
With this in mind, here is our May news digest.
5 Picks of English Civil War Relics
Visit any country house in England, and you are sure to find an armoury or furnishings with relics of the English Civil Wars. Over time many of these great armouries have been dispursed, and new relics have surfaced which means for the collector interested in this period there are a great range of civil war arms and armour to buy to suit all budgets.
WITH OUR fourth year in operations well under way and more militaria collectors than ever signing up to our service, we’re making good progress on our journey to be the #1 marketplace for militaria entrepreneurs, small militaria businesses, and individual collectors of all types of war relics.
Out of our 25,000 visitors looking for militaria on our site every month, the majority are looking for relics from 20th Centry Conflicts, but a growing number are coming to us to find militaria from earlier periods of conflicts.
With this in mind, here is our March news digest.
5 Tips for Collecting the Napoleonic Wars
MANY MILITARIA collectors focus on a particular conflict or period simply because of aesthetics. Take for example WW2 German militaria. There is no doubt the engineering, design and manufacturing prowess of Germany as a nation was and still is unmatched and this is evident in the look and design of their military equipment. Antiques from this period have an aesthetic that appeal to many.