In this week’s Open Book podcast Dr Tristram Clarke, Head of Outreach at NRS, looks in detail at the people, the items and the stories that inspired our current exhibition, For You The War Is Over: Scottish POWs 1914-1918.
Each soldier tells a different story – some of them were imprisoned in 1918 and others were captured during the war’s first battles. Some were treated more harshly than others, with officers and enlisted men separated and sent to different camps.
There are some remarkable and fascinating stories to tell as some prisoners dug tunnels and planned daring escapes, while others kept diaries which revealed their desperate longing for home and family.
With photographs, journals, letters and more, the exhibition reveals how prisoners resisted their captors, how they associated and sometimes plotted with French and Russian colleagues and how many of them kept up their morale, their health and their sanity.
This exhibition is the result of a unique partnership with private archives. It was made possible thanks to the hard work of the National Register of Archives for Scotland – a part of NRS which records collections of private papers, encourages their care and makes information about them available to researchers and members of the public.
For You The War Is Over is free to visit at General Register House, 2 Princes Street, Edinburgh on weekdays between 10 am and 4.30 pm until 23 November.
You can find a selection of items that Tristram refers to below.