The Garden Guide

Book: London and Its Environs, 1927
Chapter: 46 The Imperial War Museum

Imperial War Museum

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46. THE IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM. ADMISSION. The Museum is open free daily throughout the year except on Christmas Day and Good Friday. On week-days it is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; on Sunday from 2.30 to 6 p.m. CATALOGUES. Catalogue of the Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture (1924), 1/6; Illustrated Souvenir, 2/. The exhibits are clearly labelled and in many cases have their full history appended. The CENTRAL OFFICES, with the Reference Rooms, Map Section, and Library, at 178 Queen's Gate, are open to the public on week-days from 10 to 5 (Saturday 10 to 1). The PHOTOGRAPHIC SECTION comprises over 100,000 negatives taken on all fronts by official and other photographers attached to the combatant nations on both sides. A collection of photographs of ships from the middle of the 19th century is included. Photographs can be purchased on application in the Entrance Hall. The Imperial War Museum, opened on June 9th, 1920, was until 1923 housed in the Crystal Palace. It now occupies the former Western Galleries of the Science Museum and is entered from the north side of Imperial Institute Road near the corner of Queen's Gate. This wonderful collection is not only a profoundly impressive record of British effort and British unity; it also emphasizes the fact that in modern warfare success in the field is no longer a merely military achievement, but is the result of the devoted and heroic work of millions of men and women co-operating as parts of one vast living machine. The Air Force Section of the Imperial War Museum is at present on loan to the Aeronautical Section of the Science Museum. Just within the entrance are models of the Cenotaph in Whitehall, of Vimy Ridge in 1917, and of the Gallipoli Peninsula on the day of the Landing; and a Trophy consisting of a zeppelin control, a mountain gun, and the anchor of a German submarine, typifying victory by Air, Land, and Sea. ENTRANCE HALL. On the entrance wall is a fragment of a boat belonging to H.M.S. 'Hampshire,' the ship with which Lord Kitchener perished on June 6th, 1916. Beneath it is an Army Telegraph Form with the order for the cessation of hostilities. The illuminated war memorial opposite, by Captain H. O. Jones and Miss Jessie Bayes, records the numbers of those who served in the British forces and of those who gave their lives. On the left is a case of British and foreign medals and decorations; on the right, the uniform of Captain Albert Ball, V.C. (died 1917), the airman, and a case of documents relating to the declaration of the war and the signing of peace. Above the last is a German bayonet beaten into a pruning-hook, found after the war on the bank of the Jordan. SOUTH STAIRCASE HALL. Army Section. On the left: bell from a captured German warship; model of a Red Cross advanced aid post; and a German giant periscope. On the right: table case of newspapers and other articles manufactured by British prisoners of war, and samples of the food with which they were provided. The wall-cases illustrate British and German methods of distributing propaganda; espionage and counter-espionage; the escape of prisoners of war; and the methods unsuccessfully attempted for exporting contraband goods. In the series of long galleries which follows are a number of automatic cinematograph machines, showing troops, guns, etc., in action, which can be set in motion by putting a penny in the slot. GALLERY I contains guns of all calibres and uniforms of the Allied forces. Across the centre of the room hangs a large German sign (left on the Town Hall at Peronne in the German retirement of 1917) with the legend 'nicht argern, nur wundern' (don't be annoyed; just marvel). On the right is a case of protective armour and steel helmets, and, at the end, the French tricolour from Fort Douaumont and the famous sign from Verdun ('On ne passe pas'). GALLERY II. On the left: trench-mortars, grenadethrowers, 'minenwerfer.' On the right: cases illustrating the effects of various explosives; range-finders and telescopes; sound-ranging apparatus; sectioned fuzes; shells; gun and trench-mortar ammunition. GALLERY III. On the left: anti-gas masks and other apparatus; observation-post camouflaged as a tree; model of tanks in battle; periscope for use in a deep dug-out. In the centre: model of a trench-system, with front and support lines; light French tank; model of Ypres (1918); hand and rifle grenades, trench weapons and wire-cutters. On the right: trench signboards; barbed-wire entanglements; Model of a trench at Festubert; Inland Water Transport. On the wall is a large collection of divisional and other signs. GALLERY IV. contains heavy and light machine guns (Vickers, Maxim, etc.); automatic rifles (Lewis, Hotchkiss, etc.), and other small arms; machine gun pack-saddlery; signalling apparatus; models of machine gunners in battle, and of transport vehicles, including the London motoromnibus as used for transporting troops in France; and an exhibit illustrating the use of camouflaged clothing for scouts and snipers. GALLERIES V and VI (under rearrangement) are to be devoted to the Naval Section, including models of battleships, guns, torpedoes, mines, paravanes, and other war material. A staircase ascends from Gallery VI to Gallery VII, but during the rearrangement we must retrace our steps to the South Staircase Hall and mount to Gallery XI, whence we traverse the whole length of the upper floor. GALLERY VII illustrates Women's Work during the War: uniforms of various organisations; examples of munitions, machine-work, etcirca, produced by women; and models illustrating the war-time activities of women. The remainder of the gallery is reserved for temporary exhibitions of drawings, posters, etc. GALLERY VIII, where the collection of Works of Art begins, is devoted to the work of Sir John Lavery, a series of paintings executed at Rosyth, Scapa, Le Havre, and other war centres. Amongst them should be noted: 1265. Arrival of the German Delegates on board H.M.S. 'Queen Elizabeth' (November 15th, 1918); 4219. Surrender of the German Fleet (fore-cabin of H.M.S. 'Queen Elizabeth,' November 16th, 1918). GALLERY IX. 2473. James McBey, Lt.-Col. T. E. Lawrence, D.S.O., organiser of the Hedjaz forces; 2242. Paul Nash, Menin Road; 1922. Henry Tanks, Advanced dressing station; 1305. Philip Connard, 'The Chief'; 3070. Augustus John, Fraternity; 2746. Henry Lamb, Irish troops in the Judï¾µan Hills surprised by a bombardment; Glyn Philpot, 1323. Admiral Tyrwhitt, 1325. Admiral Sturdee; 2284. Ian Strang, Outskirts of Lens; Sir William Orpen, 2855. Peace Conference at the Quai d'Orsay, 2856 (farther on). Signing of peace at Versailles; 2626. D. Y. Cameron, Battlefield of Ypres; 2282. Charles Sims, Old German front line (Arras), 1916; 1460. John Sargent, Gassed (Doullens-Arras Road, Aug. 1918); 1921. C. R. W. Nevinson, Harvest of battle; 2234. Francis Dodd, Interrogation. In the centre: Jacob Epstein, 2756. Tin hat, 2751. American soldier, two busts. GALLERY X is devoted to the work of Sir William Orpen, an admirable Collection of paintings and drawings of wartime subjects both in England and in France. Among the numerous portraits may be mentioned: 3046. Marshal Foch (screen on the left); 2382. The artist (left); 324. Field-Marshal Earl Haig (right). GALLERY XI. 2236. Arthur Streeton, Mouth of the Bellicourt Tunnel, Hindenburg Line; Nevinson, 514. Howitzer, between naval scenes by Connard and Norman Wilkinson, 519. After a push, 516. Arras-Bapaume road; 1184. Bernard Meninsky, Canteen at Victoria; 1843. Donald Maxwell, Navy in Bagdad; 2243. John Nash, Oppy Wood; 2599. McBey, Allies entering Jerusalem (December 11th, 1917); 2449. Henry Rushbury, Refugees at Earl's Court; 1984. Geo. Clausen, Factory at Woolwich Arsenal; 2661. R. C. Carline, Lens from above; 1042, 2295. Sholto Douglas, Steamships; Wilkinson, 2451, 2452. Landing in Suvla Bay (Aug. 7th, 1915) early morning and later in the day, 2326. Salt Lake, Suvla; 2271. Anna Airy, Shell-machining shop; 2001. Frank Dobson, Balloon apron (defences of London); 1663. Adrian Hill, Ruins (North of the Somme); 2625. Darsie Japp, R.F.A. in Macedonia; Chas. Pears, 1347. A big crane, 1355. Pay-night at Rosyth; 2279. Colin U. Gill, Captured howitzer; Sir H. Hughes-Stanton, 1994. Arras, 1996. Lens; 1653. Tanks, Underground 'C.C.S.'; 935. Walter Bayes, Underworld (taking cover in a tube station); 1216. Sir Chas. Holmes, Steel-works; 2263. William Rothenstein, Watch on the Rhine; 1998. Hughes-Stanton, St. Quentui Canal; Paul Nash, 1146. 'We are making a new world,' 1145. Ypres salient; 3064. Tonks, Russian soldiers and peasant-women; 2276. William Hyde, Steel converter at Woolwich. - On the screen: 2513. Clare Atwood, Victoria, 1918; Nevinson, 515. Over the lines, 518. Paths of glory; 4229. F. T. Cole, Earl Kitchener. LANDING AND STAIRCASE. R.A.F. uniforms; charcoal. Portraits of naval and military commanders by Francis Dodd.