V for Victory!! World War II brought out the fierce patriotism in people from all walks of life and from all parts of the world. I bought the pin shown above on a recent buying trip. As I and the gentleman selling the pin studied it, we both decided, that yes, it had to be a WWII era Victory pin. I thought the little chick was adorable, but couldn’t fit that in with wartime. A friend suggested perhaps “a chicken in every pot’, or even relating to victory gardens.
I did a search on Google and there, through a couple of referrals met a charming and most interesting lady who collects among other wartime items, Victory pins. Her name is Christine Lurk and she has graciously consented to me sharing some of her knowledge and a couple of her photos from her extensive Vee Pin collection. Christine shares that she became a collector of these pins after seeing another person wearing one at a World War II era air show in Reading PA. She was instantly “hooked” (or should we say pinned?) and her amazing collection was born. Below is the photo of the pin that started it all, MacArthur in a V for Victory.
“I decided I had to have one of those, and like potato chips, I couldn’t just get one. Now I would say I have a world-class collection and I have started taking it on the road. Last year they let me set up non-profit tables (since I don’t sell anything) at the Reading airshow and elsewhere. I have branched out from just victory pins to other victory items (like license plate toppers)….and to Kilroy stuff….and to Uncle Sam stuff. And this year I have been invited back and am having fun expanding my display to include items that newer generations might not recognize and that demonstrate homefront sacrifices, like ration books and tokens and gas stickers, V mail, blackout bulbs and paper for covering windows, headlight masks, Victory gardens, airplane spotter cards, etc. I’ll make it into a Test-Your-Knowledge game too (with prizes, of course!).”
The pin above is a mystery pin. The couple are obviously dancing the tango and it’s certainly a V for Victory pin, but it’s a mystery what the connection is between the dance and the V. 2nd unusual feature of this V pin is the musical notes depicted. Typically, victory pins that contain musical notes are the audible representation of the Morse code symbol for “V” which is dot-dot-dot-dash. Bring to mind the opening bars of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and you will recognize the rhythm. That is why during WWII Beethoven’s Fifth was used as the opening theme music–the call sign–for BBC’s foreign language programming to occupied Europe. It was easily recognizable and echoed the message of VICTORY and hope in the dark days of war.
The same pin, but only in blue.
And, another musical themed pin.
This is just one of many trays that include all sorts of V for Victory emblems and insignia. Christine does not sell any of her collection. She very generously shares it at shows and gatherings of Wartime Memorabilia collectors. I’m very grateful to Christine for sharing her knowledge and photos of her collection with me. If you are ever in the Reading PA area in June, do attend the airshow. There, you will find Christine and her fabulous collection!!