21st September 2019

“Guns Before Buttons”

On the ‘WW2 and Onwards page’ I noted with amusement that in 1950 the ‘Australian Button Industry Association’ wrote to newspapers warning that Czechoslavian buttons were being sold in Australia, and could not only undermine our home-grown trade, but be used to the Communist War Effort!! Gasp!!

A more detailed and measured article appeared in The Bulletin, 27th September 1950:

This “association” was only ever quoted in regards to this one press release over a few month period in 1950. Did the association really exist, or did it fade quickly? Did one of the major manufacturers send out the press release in annoyance at the competition?

In 1950 Czech glass making was under Soviet control, with large state controlled factories set up and most of the output sold to Eastern Bloc countries. I would not have thought many glass buttons were being imported into Australia in 1950. Perhaps there was a period of dumping of product to gain export dollars, perhaps the issue was mostly paranoia?

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