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This cup and saucer was a common souvenir in World War II. Made in England by the Alfred Meakin Company, the physical appearance of the cup and saucer is called “Marigold/ Astoria Shape” but the design is what makes this set special. The set features a transfer design of both American President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill along with their respective flags and tagline “The Champions of Democracy” in between.
Both men pictured on this piece have connections to Canada. The long time Roosevelt family summer home was on Campobello Island in New Brunswick. It was from there that a young 27 year-old Franklin Roosevelt became a financial backer to the Old Gold Salvage Company, a company set up to solve the treasure mystery of Oak Island. Roosevelt visited the island several times but as far as people know, no treasure was ever found.
Sir Winston Churchill had a significant connection to Canada with his eight visits between 1900 and 1954. His World War II excursions are well documented. During his first visit in 1900-01, he was on the lecture circuit discussing his adventures in South Africa. In fact, he was in Winnipeg when the news of Queen Victoria’s death reached him. On a 1929 visit he wrote to his wife from the Banff Springs Hotel, “Darling, I am greatly attracted to this country. Immense developments are moving forward. There are fortunes to be made in many directions.”
Closer to home, Summer student Daniel Randell has unearthed some captivating, local World War II history relating to the Nelson Family who used to live in the Rev. Forbes Homestead in the 1930’s and 40’s. The father, Ike Nelson, served in World War l with the 49th Edmonton Battalion. There were five Nelson boys and three served in the War. Walter I. Nelson (1920-1994) served with the Royal Canadian Army Service Corp. from 1940 to 1946 and stayed on until 1968. Edward Nelson (1923-1999) served with the Calgary Highlanders from 1941 to 46. Robert Ernest Nelson (1925-2004) served in the Royal Canadian Air Force from 1943 to 1945. Archibald Nelson (1927-1980) was not old enough to be in the War but served in the Royal Canadian Army Service Corps from 1948 to 1968.
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