Tuesday, 15 December 2015

What To Buy A Soldier for Christmas, 1915

Mackintosh's Toffee de Luxe

In this Blog, we take a look at what Christmas gifts were being recommended by British manufacturers and retailers of the period as suitable for servicemen in the military (and naval) forces in 1915 during the 'Great War' of 1914-1918. These are taken from "The Graphic", a magazine which was widely sold throughout the whole British Empire (including New Zealand and Australia) and also in the United States of America through their agents, "The International News Co." of New York. Most products are of a very practical nature and ideally suited for those serving in the Army or Navy.

Waterman's Ideal Fountain Pen

The Allies' Wristlet Watch

Horlick's Malted Milk Tablets

Watson's "Sunica" Prism Binoculars

Wright's Coal Tar Soap

The Goldsmiths & Silversmiths Company Ltd
Military Jewellery

John Pound & Co
"Outpost" Aluminium Canteen

John Pound & Co
Pocket Lamp

John Pound & Co
3-Fold "Service" Map Case

John Pound & Co
"Redilite" Trench
or Map Lamp

John Pound & Co
"Active Service" Wrist Watch

"Harrods" London
Regimental & Naval Jewellers

Harrods London
Military & Naval

Gillette Safety Razor

Craven "A"

The Army Wrist Watch Protector

Robinson & Cleaver, Belfast

The "Universal" Vacuum Flask

Players Navy Cut Tobacco

Smith's Glasgow Mixture (Tobacco)

Carter's Self-propelling Chair, a "Rest & Comfort" Chair,
& a Reading Stand 

Benson's Wristlet Watch

Waltham Watches

JC Vickery, London, Jeweller, Silversmith &
Dressing Case Manufacturer

Copyright : All images are from "The Graphic" of 1915 in my collection and may be freely copies provided this site is acknowledged. 


  1. Great post! It reminds me of young Princess Mary, the Princess Royal, who wanted to give a gift to every brave service ­man in the trenches in time for Christmas 1914. I am glad she did.


    But her gift had to be the same for every single fighting man (apart from tobacco). The gifts above, as recommended by The Graphic, were much more personal. And more useful as well. The only thing I wonder is if ordinary families could afford something wonderful like military jewellery or wrist watches.

    1. Thank you Hels. This post has left me wondering at what sort of gifts may have been sent by family and friends from Australia and New Zealand and what was acceptable bearing in mind (any) regulations, logistics and war conditions. Could be fascinating research.


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