Scholar in Iraq looking for help with WWI-era British letters, inscriptions

Camille Cole Discussion


At a virtual event at an Iraqi university today, one of the attendees asked me for help with the following problem: He works at a museum in Najaf (Khan al-Shilan Najaf Heritage and 1920 Revolution Museum). During the Ottoman period, the building held travelers' lodgings, and during the 1920 revolt (possibly also WWI) housed captive British soldiers. At the museum, they have letters written by the soldiers, and there are also drawings, writing, and dates on the walls left by the British captives. The museum staff are looking for someone with an interest in the topic to help with this collection - I'm not completely sure what they want, but likely reading and transcribing the texts and inscriptions; possibly also disseminating them in some form.

If anyone is interested, please be in touch (you can reach me at and I will try to put you in touch with the people at the museum. Note that the event today was conducted in Arabic, so I don't know if the people at the museum prefer to speak Arabic or English with collaborators; it is probably easiest if anyone working on this project with them can speak some Arabic.


Camille Cole