Alternative Name(s): Spade, Shovel, Pick, Trench Spade

Collapsible steel tool with combined shovel (or spade) and pick. Provenance unknown, but inscription and appearance dates to World War I.

Digging trenches was a key part of front-line military operations on the Western Front during World War I. The conflict was characterized by long periods of stalemate when the front lines moved little. Conditions in the trenches were notoriously difficult, particularly during the harsh winter of 1916-17, when trenches were deep in water, mud and sometimes snow.

Tunnelling is likely to have required a longer-handled spade.

Physical Description

Tool with folding cast iron head with pointed shovel at one end and pick at the other. Round wooden handle.

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