Christmas 1918 – war is over

The entertainment troupe The Nobodies programme from their 1918-19 programme
The entertainment troupe The Nobodies programme from their 1918-19 programme

In 1918 Armistice was declared and it was to be the first Christmas after the guns fell silent, but on the home front it was a time of austerity for many.

The run up to Christmas 1918 was a unique time in the district.

The Nobodies entertainment troupe poster from 1918

The Nobodies entertainment troupe poster from 1918

After Armistice brought the First World War to an end on November 11, 1918, families eagerly awaited the return of their loved ones. It was therefore a time of great excitement, but also a time of trepidation.

It was often weeks or even months before the lads made it home and a number of deaths on the front line had yet to be reported. The local newspapers were filled with contrast. Stories of soldiers killed in the final days of the war sit next to exciting adverts for Christmas toys. At the same time elections took place, with some women now able to vote for the first time. There was celebration when rationing and lighting restrictions were relaxed, but reminders of the men lost to war always loomed in the headlines. Still, Doncaster’s families tried their best to enjoy what the Doncaster Chronicle described as ‘the best Christmas since 1913’. If you have pastime pictures and stories please send them to nigel.booth@jpress.co.uk.

Advertisements from the Doncaster Gazette, November 22, 1918

Advertisements from the Doncaster Gazette, November 22, 1918

A typical 1918 Christmas card

A typical 1918 Christmas card

An advertisement for the Santa Claus Treasure Bag from the Debeber 18, 1918 edition of the Doncaster Gazette

An advertisement for the Santa Claus Treasure Bag from the Debeber 18, 1918 edition of the Doncaster Gazette

The Mayor handing the colours to the Escort from the Doncaster Chronicle, December 20 1918

The Mayor handing the colours to the Escort from the Doncaster Chronicle, December 20 1918

News of war from November 22 edition of the Doncaster Gazette

News of war from November 22 edition of the Doncaster Gazette

Doncastrians story of Armistice Day at the front November 29, Doncaster Gazette

Doncastrians story of Armistice Day at the front November 29, Doncaster Gazette

Those who were killed in the final push in 1918 as revealed by the Doncaster Gazette

Those who were killed in the final push in 1918 as revealed by the Doncaster Gazette