Work is well underway at the Chiltern Athenaeum Museum to create a lasting commemoration for World War I soldiers from the town and surrounding districts. Funding through the Anzac Centenary Community Grant program will be used to tell stories through interactive technology, of those who served in the Great War. Christine Hay (left) and Maureen Everitt have been busy on the project searching through extensive photographic archives.
RESEARCH is well underway at a local museum to tell World War I stories with the use of interactive technology thanks to a grant received from a State Government last month.
The Chiltern Athenaeum Museum is creating a lasting commemoration for soldiers who were from the town and district with funding through the Anzac Centenary Community Grant program.
The $13,000 grant will be used to secure stories of those who served in the Great War through interactive technology.
Museum chair Kevin Mayhew said the Chiltern Honour Roll and extensive photographic archive would be drawn upon to combine storytelling and digital technologies.
“It will transform documentary heritage into a dynamic digital archive,” he said.
Mr Mayhew said it would help record, commemorate and preserve the history and sacrifice of Chiltern’s World War I service men, women and their communities for future generations.
Among artifacts and memorabilia being preserved is a silk embroidered cushion cover made in Egypt in 1916 by World War I soldier Walter Thomas Dawson from Cornish Town.
Museum researcher Maureen Everitt said the soldier had sent it to a young Chiltern woman Jean Smith who wrote to many soldiers through the war.
“He had written and sent quite a few postcards to her as well,” she said.
As the museum worked through the honour roll with 332 names, Ms Everitt said there would be a focus on 10 soldiers for bigger stories.
Museum volunteer Christine Hay said there were more than 700 young soldiers who fought in the First World War from the town and district.
“Chiltern had the highest percentage of soldiers than any other place in rural Victoria,” she said.
Ms Everitt said interviews are being undertaken with descendents and people from the town who know the families too.
“Once completed the research then goes to Melbourne to be digitised,” she said.
The project is a collaboration between the museum and the University of Melbourne’s Grimwad Centre for Cultural Materials Conservation.
LASTING LEGACY: Chiltern Athenaeum Museum researchers Christine Hay (left) and Maureen Everitt with an embroidered silk cushion cover made by a World War I soldier.