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Stick it in your Army.....Album!

by Ron Goldstein

Contributed by 
Ron Goldstein
People in story: 
Ron Goldstein
Location of story: 
Trieste
Background to story: 
Army
Article ID: 
A2612567
Contributed on: 
08 May 2004

Memories of made of this

I’m sure that I was not alone in starting an Army Album at the end of the war.
Mine was created in 1946 whilst I was stationed at Opicina just outside Trieste.
Here I found myself with lots of spare time and plenty of memorabilia that I had accumulated over the preceding 4 years so, presto, I had an album.
There were of course lots of snaps and postcards, there were the inevitable Army passes to visit such exotic places as Sienna, Florence and Rome.
There were propaganda leaflets, currency, and handbills for the local ENSA show, route cards and maps.
Here was an arm band of the Afrika Corps, there was an Order of the Day, issued by Field Marshal Alexander, expressing his gratitude to his troops for clearing Italy of the last Nazi aggressor.
There were two years of diaries to stick in, although I stupidly selected the ones that seemed to capture the mood of the time and pasted them (yes, I said stupidly) into the album so that I could not read the underside!
On the point of diaries, originally I had 4, starting in 1942 on my call-up but over the many moves I was to make over the years ’42 and ’43 were lost forever more and I had to rely on my memory and friend’s diaries for salient dates.
Here is a page full of programmes of shows I saw on my first leave back in England, here is an Italian song sheet.
Here is a picture taken after the war of my Sgt.Major, Busty Thomas M.M. in his role as Beefeater at the Tower of London, I took my wife and children to meet him and we were given a private tour of the Tower.
There’s five years of memories pasted into this book and it’s already been re-bound once.
On the credit side, I’ve managed to scan most of it into JPEG images and my kids (now in their early 50’s!) have been given CDs with these and thousands of family photos I’ve taken over the years.

Yes, I did stick it in my Army Album.

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These messages were added to this story by site members between June 2003 and January 2006. It is no longer possible to leave messages here. Find out more about the site contributors.

Message 1 - Stick it in - album

Posted on: 08 May 2004 by Trooper Tom Canning - WW2 Site Helper

Ron -
this is quite an innovation and it will be an excellent way of showing some of the obstacles we had to overcome in the course of clearing the "Teds" from Italia - I had a camera once over there but I kept getting the prints back showing only my right eye ! Could'nt figure out what I was doing wrong so I threw it away !

 

Message 2 - Stick it in - album

Posted on: 25 May 2004 by James_Harvey - WW2 Site Helper

Hi Ron

Are you medals the 39-45 star Africa and italy stars and defence and war medals? as the picture is not to clear.

Did you receive the bar to the Africa medal, as I thought all memebers off the 1st and 8th Armies recieved bars and members of the royal navy and RAF received a bar if they were in africa or malta in '42/43 only.

An impressive set of photographs, I only have 2 of my grandfather 1 taken when he first joined the RN and another when he was at a shore establishment in the Far East.

Kind Regards

James :)

Message 1 - Oh I wish.

Posted on: 08 May 2004 by Frank Mee Researcher 241911

Hi Ron,
Never once did I think to keep a diary or notes. Every spare minute I had was taken up by dancing when I could get. Other times it would be singing and playing piano or lifting the elbow, the three are compatable to a high degree.
I did have a collection of bits and pieces which my mother when she changed houses decided was rubbish and threw out. This including masses of music sheets that would be worth a fortune now.
Dad managed to grab a few photo's of past family but mother was very efficient when it came to clearance.
My advice to youngsters today would be keep everything and write down day to day experiences because you come to regret not having done so.
I am glad you and others did manage to keep such things we can pry into and look forward to more of your memorabilia. I notice the Photo is stranded on the desk and expect it will appear in a week or so when they get round to it.
Regards Frank.

 

Message 2 - Oh I wish.

Posted on: 09 May 2004 by Ron Goldstein

Hi Frank
Glad you like my bits and pieces, I warn you, there's more to come!
As you've probably sussed out, I'm one of natures magpies and the IT world came along just in time for me to be able to store stuff on computers and on CDs.
I'm particularly proud of the fact that I was able to convert about 500 coloured slides of my kids, into jpg images that I was then able to give to them as CDs for their own kids.
With respect to WW2 history, the best thing that happened to me was finding Regimental diaries on the internet that gave me, for the first time, a broader outlook on what was going on at the time.
Regards
Ron

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