« Return to news

Colorado Family Uncovers WWI Artifacts, Donates Them To National Museum

April 11, 2018 | In the Press

From CBSDenver.com (http://denver.cbslocal.com/2018/04/11/wwi-artifacts-national-museum/)

A treasure trove of World War I artifacts tracing back to the origin of the U.S. Diplomatic Couriers Servicehave been uncovered in Colorado Springs.

This year the State Department is commemorating 100 years of the that service.

The family of Amos J. Peaslee donated the collection of medals, maps, thousands of letters, and what may be an original printing of the Treaty of Versailles to the State Department for preservation. Peaslee was one of the service’s original members.

ww1 artifacts transfer frame 1056 Colorado Family Uncovers WWI Artifacts, Donates Them To National Museum

(credit: CBS)

“In the back of my mind I was like ‘what am I going to do about this collection?’” said Rob Peaslee Dougall, the courier’s grandson.

Amos was a member of the Army’s Silver Greyhound couriers, who delivered correspondence to the war’s frontlines. He helped found the 100 member Diplomatic Courier Service operating through the State Department from U.S. Embassies around the globe.

The collection survived years of moves across country and was being held in a series of storage boxes for years.

ww1 artifacts transfer frame 0 Colorado Family Uncovers WWI Artifacts, Donates Them To National Museum

CBS4’s Stan Bush interviews Shane Morris Sparks. (credit: CBS)

Peaslee is most famous for serving as the U.S. Ambassador to Australia, appointed by President Eisenhower. His family knew the materials were important, but did not fully realize its historic value to the service he founded.

“I think it’s fascinating that we found this and it survived all this time,” said Shane Morris Sparks, a current diplomatic courier who found Peaslee’s collection.

ww1 artifacts transfer frame 1176 Colorado Family Uncovers WWI Artifacts, Donates Them To National Museum

(credit: CBS)

The collection is being shipped to the State Department Museum in Washington, D.C. for preservation, study, and eventually display.

“A lot of it could have ended up in a dust bin somewhere,” said Peaslee’s grandson.

Connect with us
Our mission

The Mission of ARCS is to represent and promote Registrars and Collections Specialists, nationally and internationally, to educate them in the professional best practices of registration and collections care, and to facilitate communication and networking.

Learn more about ARCS »