In my last post, I shared Hammond’s achievements, his contributions to the war effort. However, I believe he achieved much more. Through his letters, he opened my eyes to life during WWI ~ life in the trenches, his family members’ lives, which likely mirrored those of so many other families living in England. The letters include references to everyday items of the time ( brand names of those treasured cigarettes, food items such as “trotters” ). I learned a bit about the cautions imposed on those serving in the military ( he couldn’t tell exactly where he was, just “Somewhere in France” )… I’ve had quite the education! I’ve also been able to share my experience and new understanding with my family members as well as folks here at the museum, “Have you read these? You’ve got to read them to appreciate them! Give yourself a couple of hours to read and enjoy!” And now, I’ve been able to share them with you, the reader. Please take the time to read them, to appreciate them!
Why do I feel this is so important to us, those of us who are so far removed from that time in history? I believe that in order to understand our present day world and ourselves as individuals today, we must understand what went before us, how those events and people impact our lives. Further, connections with other people help all of us grow. As I researched this project, I was able to connect with Hammond’s great-niece, who is excited to learn more about this family member, this person who contributed to her own family history; she now has a copy of Hammond’s letters to enrich her life. That is part of what we’re all about here at the museum ~ we share stories!
I’m at the museum on Thursdays. I would love to meet you and share the original letters with you. Come in and spend some time, not only with the letters, but also with the other stories in our museum!