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The webmaster, Pat Cryer, as a young child

Snuff
in early to mid 1900s Britain

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snuff papers: folded papers for selling snuff

Snuff papers, photographed in Winchester City Museum.

I have read about people taking snuff and I have seen it in period films, but I never seen anyone using it is real life. I suppose it was going out of fashion by the time I was born in 1939, and perhaps the austerity of the Second World War had something to do with it - or maybe it was a private activity among older men.

However, snuff was still sold in tobacconists shops. It came in twirls of paper with the maker's name printed on or in small metal tins.

I understand that the snuff was transferred at home into a dedicated snuff box. Snuff boxes could be quite elegant and the design and quality of their materials was an accessory that said something about their owners, as did cigarette cases for cigarette smokers.

If you can add anything to this page or provide a photo, I would be pleased to hear from you.

Pat Cryer, webmaster

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