Stalingrad Sword Commemorative Box

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Stalingrad Sword Commemorative Box

Evelyn Waugh wrote the Sword of Honour trilogy. The sword is of course the Stalingrad Sword presented to Marshal Stalin at the Tehran Conference in nov/dec 1943. The sword was made to commemorate the sacrifice of the Russian people at Stalingrad and was sent to many major cities in England during that year, where thousands of people saw it. It was shown on Pathe News and was quite an event at the time. The sword was made at Wilkinson Sword by a number of master craftsman and my grandfather was one of these. He ground the sword.

He was presented with the commemorative box at a ceremony at the Russian Embassy. The box is nicely carved and holds a large album with photos of Stalingrad before the war and the devastation after the battle. The enclosed picture shows the album opened at the first pages, but shows little of the fine box.

It is mentioned in the third book of Waugh's trilogy. Guy Crouchback sees the long queues outside Westminster Abbey where the sword is on display and was not tempted to join them in their piety as he dislikes Stalin.

It has always seemed to me as an artifact of those times, a way to express gratitude to Russia.

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