If you have an interest in the First World War or are a collector of PEI history books, you don’t want to miss acquiring a free copy of the Culture Summerside booklet, From War to Peace; 1919—PEI Soldiers Return from the Great War. The 88-page, magazine-style publication examines through fact and fiction the environment Island soldiers came home to in 1919.
Volunteers, working through the MacNaught History Centre in Summerside, searched six Island newspapers of 1919 for interesting items about the repatriation of PEI soldiers from overseas. Jean MacKay, Assistant Archivist and Project Leader, culled and organized their selections into themes for which Clinton Morrison, the author of Hell Upon Earth; a Personal Account of Prince Edward Islanders in the Great War 1914-1918, wrote editorial comments. Morrison also wrote the booklet introduction reviewing the year of 1919 and the return of soldiers to PEI.
A section of the booklet was devoted to works of fiction created by fifteen community writers based on an image taken from one of the newspapers of the First World War era. The microfiction they created portrays some of the ways in which the returned men or their families were affected by the war experience. Grace Jenkins, of Hummingbird Creative, was the graphic designer for the booklet.
Residents or visitors can pick up their copy of their booklet at the MacNaught History Centre at 75 Spring Street or the Lefurgey Cultural Centre at 205 Prince Street in Summerside. The Public Archives and Records Office in downtown Charlottetown also has copies available.