Jardine, John (polehead collector)

Reference: D DX1787Date: 1700s-1800sExtent: 255
Brass polehead fleur de lys from Jardine collection of poleheads
Brass polehead MERL 61/244/33

Sir John Jardine (1884-1965) 2nd baronet of Nottingham was interested in Friendly Society Emblems and amassed a large collection. These metal poleheads would be attached to a pole and carried in procession by the members of village clubs on their annual ‘walks’. These clubs were parish friendly societies formed to provide some insurance for their members against sickness or death. In addition, the clubs played an important part in the social life of the village. Each Friendly Society would have an emblem of a different design, from simple shapes like diamonds, hearts and crescents, to elaborate designs of ships, horses or more symbolic designs.

The Jardine Collection of poleheads contains examples from Somerset and surrounding counties.

More Information:

The objects are catalogued on the online database. Search using the word ‘polehead’

An archive catalogue is available on the online database

Other poleheads in the museum collection include Allen, Shickle and Forster

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