Online exhibition ensures War stories aren’t forgotten

Wednesday 31 October 2018

Canterbury Museum has launched an online version of its exhibition Canterbury and World War One: Lives Lost, Lives Changed.


World War One online exhibition screenshot

The online exhibition provides digital access to stories and images about Cantabrians during World War One.

The digital version provides access to stories, images and videos that relate the experiences of Cantabrians during the War.

Lives Lost, Lives Changed opened in November 2017 as one of the Museum’s contributions to New Zealand's World War One centenary commemorations. The online exhibition, a representation of the original, focuses on showcasing objects and images from the Museum’s collection.

Canterbury Museum Acting Director Jennifer Storer says this initiative will give visitors ongoing digital access to content and stories after the physical exhibition closes on Armistice Day, 11 November.

“The Museum welcomes more than 750,000 visitors each year, while a further 250,000 see our smaller touring exhibitions in venues around Canterbury and thousands more access our collections, and the stories behind them, online,” she says.

“Unlike the physical exhibition it doesn’t have to be packed down and put away. We hope it will be a useful resource for years to come enabling future audiences to learn about the enormous sacrifices Cantabrians made in World War One.”

The online exhibitions features the Roll of Honour from the original exhibition, remembering the 4,399 Cantabrians who died during World War One. Users can search for their relatives and leave virtual poppies to remember the fallen.

Nearly 100,000 New Zealanders served in Western Europe and the Middle East during World War One. Over 18,000 of those died and thousands more were injured.

But when war was declared in August 1914, many young men jumped at the chance for overseas adventure.

Back home, the mothers, wives and sisters of Canterbury did an enormous amount of fundraising and organised thousands of care packages for those serving overseas.

At the end of the War, an influenza pandemic swept the country killing about 9,000 people in a month. Many were soldiers who had survived the horrors of the war.

The original exhibition and the online exhibition were developed with support from the Lottery World War One Commemorations Fund.

Visit Canterbury and World War One: Lives Lost, Lives Changed here.

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