At 5am on the 11th November 2018, the Armistice of Compiègne was signed between the Allies and what was left of the German Empire Republic (incidentally, the train carriage where this happened was ‘saved’ by Hitler for the signing of the another armistice with France in 1940). The Armistice agreed on a ceasefire at the strike of 11am that same day, and the occupation of the Rhineland began. Incidentally, between the signing of the armistice and it’s coming into effect, over 2500 soldiers died as fighting when on until the very last minute. As such, the 11th of November is traditionally celebrated as the last day of the First World War.
The following year, King George decided to hold a private memorial in honour of those who had died during the gruelling war, and many families would have done the same. The same day the first two minute silence was held, with the country grinding to a halt. In 1920, the first official memorial was held along with the burial of the Unknown Warrior and unveiling of the Cenotaph. To the right is a (very fragile) paper napkin we have in our collection from this day.