The exhibit aims to educate British Columbians about the contributions of their forebearers in the First World War. Submitted photo

The Great War comes to Trail museum

The exhibit is showing at the Trail Museum & Archives from April to mid-June

The Royal BC Museum has unearthed powerful material about the Great War (the First World War), creating a travelling exhibition that has set up camp in the new Trail Museum and Archives at the Riverfront Centre.

This smaller version of the larger travelling exhibition, called British Columbia’s War, 1914–1918, and which aims to educate British Columbians about the contributions of their forebears in the First World War, is on exhibit at the Trail Museum & Archives in Trail from April to mid-June.

“The Great War had a monumental impact on the formation of British Columbia as a political entity, with its own emerging sense of identity,” said the Royal BC Museum’s CEO, Prof. Jack Lohman. “The Royal BC Museum’s collections help show how the province coalesced around this traumatic global event, as soldiers and nurses from all corners and various ethnic groups of the province signed up for service.”

The exhibition began touring the province in March 2016.

One of the strengths of this travelling exhibition is its deeply collaborative nature. Partnering community museums have been encouraged to expand upon the exhibition’s major themes by adding content from their own collections to tell the stories that matter most to their visitors.

The Trail Museum and Archives incorporates artifacts and archival records from the Trail Historical Society collections to help illustrate the local influence and impact of the Great War. Included in the exhibit is a 1917 standard German machine gun captured by Canadian troops and distributed to Legions across the country.

In addition, many letters home from Trail soldiers are exhibited, telling heart-wrenching stories of life in the trenches.

Staff is delighted to make this the inaugural temporary exhibit.

This project has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada.

In recent years, the Royal BC Museum has embarked upon the creation and distribution of an ambitious series of travelling exhibitions made in-house by the Royal BC Museum’s Exhibition Arts Team.

~ About the Trail Museum & Archives

Newly opened in April 2018, the Trail Museum and Archives exhibits, interprets and manages the collections of the Trail Historical Society from the new Riverfront Centre in downtown Trail. Three dedicated galleries depict the social and cultural heritage of this industrial West Kootenay, known for its sports legacies and industrious roots. The Trail Museum and Archives is a City of Trail facility and is integrated with the Trail & District Public Library in the new centre.

~ About the Royal BC Museum

The Royal BC Museum explores the province’s human history and natural history, advances new knowledge and understanding of BC, and provides a dynamic forum for discussion and a place for reflection. The museum and archives celebrate culture and history, telling the stories of BC in ways that enlighten, stimulate and inspire. Looking to the future, the Royal BC Museum will be a refreshed, modern museum, extending its reach far beyond Victoria as a world-class cultural venue and repository of digital treasures.

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