By LYNN SHIGEKAWA
The Alvin Museum is requesting the help of community members in order to recreate aspects of World War I and make it more relevant to those who may have had family members who were involved in the conflict. Community engagement and sharing of stories, photos, artifacts, papers, letters, diaries, uniforms, equipment or even household items or fashion of that era will help to bring the story alive.
According to Wikipedia, “World War I (WWI or WW1), also known as the First World War, the Great War, or the War to End All Wars, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. More than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, were mobilized in one of the largest wars in history. Over nine million combatants and seven million civilians died as a result of the war (including the victims of a number of genocides), a casualty rate exacerbated by the belligerents’ technological and industrial sophistication, and the tactical stalemate caused by grueling trench warfare. It was one of the deadliest conflicts in history.”
However, World War 1 also propelled many inventions during the era; unified America behind a cause; and created a heightened sense of patriotism. The entire country became involved in the war effort in many different ways from saving for the cause, to encouraging vegetable gardening to promoting rationing, and providing new roles for women in the workforce.
The Alvin Museum is currently working to tell this full story. They are mounting an exhibit and have gathered some uniforms, letters, recruiting posters, advertisements and other artifacts. Local residents who have items relevant to the era are sought to help make the exhibit richer and more relevant to the local area community. Many people have a story to share about shortages of food, goods, or supplies that their families may have experienced or about other activities occurring during this time period.
The public is encouraged to share their ideas, keepsakes, artifacts or other memorabilia with the Alvin Museum. Items may be loaned for the short term duration of the exhibit or donated to the museum. Families will be credited for their contributions in the museum newsletter and other public communications.
Those with questions, ideas, items, memories or artifacts are encouraged to contact the Alvin Museum. Open Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 300 W. Sealy, Alvin or call 281-331-4469 or email [email protected]