People urged to share their mementos in new archives project

People from across Staffordshire are being invited to share the stories behind some of their most prize possessions in a new on-line exhibition.

Meaningful Mementos is the latest project from Staffordshire County Council’s Archives and Heritage service which aims to explore some of the everyday things people treasure.

The interactive exhibition is being launched as part of the Staffordshire History Festival that is running throughout October and is asking people to share their stories on the project website.

Amongst the objects, photos, postcards and documents being explored is a handwritten recipe for West Indian Blanc-Mange. Often recipes are treasured heirlooms that are passed down through generations. This recipe is from a recipe book from Stone, from 1890. Various people have contributed to the book with their own recipes, so it may have belonged to a family and used over several generations.

A selection of homemade wooden toys from Newcastle-under-Lyme also feature in the collection. These were made for Sheila Bloor during the Second World War by her father, Ernest, a cabinet maker in Cross Heath in the town, from off-cuts and spare pieces from his workshop.

Talking about the exhibition, Victoria Wilson, Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture at Staffordshire County Council said:

“This is a wonderfully simple project that is helping tell people’s stories through their prized possessions and objects.

“It’s all part of the Staffordshire History Festival, where we are hoping to learn more about our amazing county by exploring the everyday things we treasure.

“We all have a favourite memento or keepsake that we find meaning in; it may be a souvenir from an unforgettable childhood holiday or something that has been handed down to us through the generations.  Whatever the object and its story, whether from your attic or garage, the team want to know about it, so please upload it to the project website.”

People can share their stories of rediscovered treasures and connect with other objects on the project website at https://meaningfulmementoes.org.uk/

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