1 comment on “Laying Flowers on the Graves”

Laying Flowers on the Graves

The Dutch tradition of laying flowers on all the individual graves in a cemetery began very soon after the war. The photograph here, taken at the Arnhem-Oosterbeek cemetery, was probably taken in 1946 or 1947.

In 1947, The Times recorded that ‘on one day recently […] over 30,000 Dutch people visited the graves of the fallen of Arnhem’. It added:

On occasions it is alleged that graves are cared for by those whose real interest is in the reward of cigarettes and food sent from England, but one has only to mark the many graves of the unknown that have been adopted to see without a doubt that this cynical charge applies only to a few isolated instances.

Special Correspondent, ‘The Dead of the Empire: Work of Army and Imperial War Graves Commission: Ideals and Achievement’, The Times, 11 November 1947.

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Arnhem-Oosterbeek Cemetery

Further to yesterday’s post about Colonel Stott and possible photographs of him at work, the second photograph, also in the Gelders Archief, shows Stott in the very early days of the ARNHEM-OOSTERBEEK CEMETERY. He is deep in conference with Captain J T Long, of 37 Graves Registration Unit.

This cemetery was developed with the full cooperation of the local authorities, and a remarkable pair of letters show the cordial relationship between the authorities and the Army Graves Service: CORRESPONDENCE.

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The Liberated Countries in the Care for the Dead

The liberated countries provided the most immense amount of help in finding, identifying, and honouring dead British soldiers, sailors, and airmen. This new article gives a number of examples of their invaluable contribution: The Liberated Countries and the War Dead