For the month of June, Culture Summerside will host the After the War exhibition at the Lefurgey Cultural Centre. After the War looks at the challenges facing returning soldiers and military personnel at the end of the Great War, and the systems and organizations put in place to ease the transition.
Two hundred and fifty thousand Canadians were demobilized at the end of the First World War, a process that took until the summer of 1919 to complete. For a variety of reasons, coming home to Canada was a challenge for many. For example, during the war 172,000 Canadians were wounded, many to the degree that they could not come back to their former jobs, and at least 12 percent were suffering psychological injuries.
Many Prince Edward Islanders are descendants of those who answered the call for “King and Country” and are proud of the service of their ancestors.
After the War is presented by the Canadian Centre for the Great War, a charitable heritage organization based in Montreal that promotes the social history of the First World War in Canada.
The exhibit is the conclusion to Culture Summerside’s 1919—PEI Soldiers Return from the Great War Project, which consisted of a lecture series, the production of a radio vignette, and the publication of an 88-page booklet From War to Peace completed with the participation of volunteer researchers and creative writers. Complimentary copies of the booklet are available at the MacNaught History Centre and at the Lefurgey Cultural Centre.
The exhibit is funded by Heritage Canada, The Zeller Family Foundation, and the Jackman Foundation.
June exhibit hours at the Lefurgey Cultural Centre, 205 Prince Street, are Monday through Friday, 9 am to 4:30 pm, June 3 through 28. Admission is free. The PEI Regiment Museum in Charlottetown partnered with Culture Summerside to bring the exhibit to the Maritimes and will be hosting the display of text panels and artefacts in July.