Sweetheart jewelry at Atlanta Airport

Valentine’s Day is coming up and that makes it a good time to check out the exhibit of necklaces, bracelets, lockets, pins and “Sweetheart jewelry” on display at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

According to the airport newsletter:

During World War II, sending mementos known as sweetheart jewelry to soldiers was a popular tradition, which had started during World War I.

Soldiers would pound, mold, hammer and polish any available piece of metal, plastic or seashells to make the jewelry. Aluminum and windshields from downed aircraft were used to craft bracelets, necklaces, pendants and pins

In addition to writing letters, families, wives and girlfriends shipped handcrafted jewelry as another way to stay connected with the soldiers.

The airport’s collection of sweetheart jewelry is from the National Museum of Patriotism (their Web site is undergoing a make-over) and is on display between the Terminal North baggage claim and the Airport’s MARTA station entrance.