Display connects locals with fallen
Katanning’s Farmer family features in a moving new exhibition honouring Great Southern soldiers who were killed in WWI.
The names of 187 men and women who died in the Great War are the focus of a new exhibition Honouring Albany’s Own at the Barracks Main Gallery in Albany.
Part of Albany’s Armistice celebrations, the exhibition opened yesterday and coincides with the Field of Light: Avenue of Honour.
The names belong to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for Australia, and the exhibition has a personal tribute plaque for each of the men and women who were connected to Albany in some way.
Katanning’s John Farmer represented two of his grandfather’s brothers who feature in the exhibition, and his daughter who wrote a poem which also features.
Mr Farmer said it was a huge honour to have the members of his family recognised.
“It is a great way to have their memory preserved,” he said.
“My daughter couldn’t be here today but her poem features here and it is a great reflection.”
Curator David Theodore said the stories had been collated over the past nine months.
“What you see here isn’t the end of it, it is just the start,” he said.
“We have the Avenue of Honour but we have never gone into each individual story before so the idea of people being able to actually go and see where they are buried and the story behind them.
“War was unfortunately the end of their life, they had a life before then.”
Mayor Dennis Wellington said the exhibition marked Albany taking its position in the Anzac story.
“It is very very important to us: finding where the story started from, where it is going to continue from — it’s our heritage — and making sure we look after it,” Mr Wellington said.
“As you go around you will see a lot of them we don’t know where they are buried, we just know that they died so that we can live the lifestyle that we do live.”
Family representatives were in attendance for the ceremony, many of whom contributed information to the collection.
Photos of 100 of the men and women have been found and feature in the exhibition, with the City asking anyone who has photos of the 87 others to provide them to the exhibition.
The original Avenue of Honour stood on Middleton Road.
Honouring Albany’s Own will be on display until April 28 2019 at the Princess Royal Fortress.
What you see here isn’t the end of it, it is just the start. War was unfortunately the end of their life, they had a life before then.
John Farmer looks at a plaque honouring his grandfather’s brother.
City of Albany Mayor Dennis Wellington.
Curator David Theodore at the Honouring Albany's Own display at the Princess Royal Fortress.