18th International Red Cross Conference Pins

Date / Period
1952
Place
Created in Toronto, Ontario. Kept in Canadian Red Cross National Archives, Ottawa.
Object Type
Badges, Pins, Medals and Stamps
Credit
Birks-Ellis-Ryrie Jewellers, Toronto
Topics
International Humanitarianism and Presence

These pins, made by Birks-Ellis-Ryrie jewellers in Toronto, were given to the approximately 700 delegates at the XVIII International Red Cross Conference, which was held in Toronto, July 23 to August 9, 1952. Birks-Ellis-Ryrie was the main supplier of pins and badges to the Canadian Red Cross Society for many years. 

The opening ceremonies of the Conference were held at Massey Hall and overseen by Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent. Meeting sessions were held at the Royal York Hotel. 

Every four years, except in times of war, the International Red Cross Conference commences to pass resolutions on all international Red Cross matters. This conference was the second held in North America (the first in Washington, D.C. in 1912) and the only time it’s been held in Canada. It was also the first of the Cold War, with tensions between certain delegations on display during meetings.

"During the conference, the Red Cross voted on a resolution to reaffirm the set of values from 1946 that grounded the work of the Red Cross movement."

From elaborate water safety demonstrations to an exhibition parade by nine detachments of the CRC Corps, the Canadian Red Cross tried to ensure some 3,000 international delegates, staff, volunteer aids and members of the press enjoyed their stay. 

During the conference, the Red Cross voted on a resolution to reaffirm the set of values from 1946 that grounded the work of the Red Cross movement. In 1965, those principles were re-codified and proclaimed by the International Red Cross in 1965 as the seven Fundamental Principles of the Red Cross Movement.

18th International Red Cross Conference Pins

18th International Red Cross Conference Pins
Red Cross Envelope
Toronto. XVIIIth International Conference of the Red Cross
Toronto. XVIIIth International Conference of the Red Cross, 1952. Photo: International Committee of the Red Cross
XVIII International Red Cross Conference
From left to right: Jean Pictet, Paul and Frederic Ruegger Siordet. In the center, Emile Sandström, President of the League, right Roger Gallopin.