Monday, August 2, 2021

Forever Changed: Stories Of A War

 I paid a visit to the Canadian War Museum a few days ago, primarily to take in the special exhibit that's on at the moment, running into September. The Museum came to its present headquarters in 2005, and the building feels like a ship, a bomber, or a bunker, depending on which view you have of it. It is ideal for its subject matter, which is the story of Canada at war, both at home and abroad. I came on the day after I'd been vaccinated, and actually was feeling rather trashed, so I kept this visit short.

Forever Changed: Stories From The Second World War tells a personal narrative of the war, both at home and overseas, and in both theatres of war. I found it tremendously effective, and we're going to be spending a few posts looking at it.

There was the odd bit of military hardware in here, such as these anti-aircraft guns, but the emphasis of the exhibit leaned heavily on photographs, personal items, and mementos of those who lived through the times. Most of the stories are Canadian, but not all.

Imagine, for instance, being a mother and having eight sons all in the service.

Women at home were called into the workplace to replace men off to serve. Or perhaps were already there. This is one accomplished example.

This particular story drew my attention: twin brothers, dying a month apart.

This jacket belonged to one of them.

A panel here focused on women and the home front in terms of manufacturing for the war effort.


  1. It must´ve been really awful and so senseless.

  2. Focusing on personal stories makes war more real. Good selection of photos

    Hope you are feeling better

  3. I love this kind of exhibition William, the human side of a dreadful war. They were all, both men and women, so brave and determined.

  4. War brings out both the worst and the best sides of human. Some, even the weakest and timid were able to rise up to be brave and strong.

  5. I love the stories of individuals in the displays.

  6. Such a dreadful thing war. Heartbreaking for so many.

  7. Personal stories bring the war closer.

  8. @Iris: and yet of any war, this one was the one that had to be fought, because doing nothing would have been worse.

    @Maywyn: the personal side really brought out the best in this.

    @Grace: I agree.

    @Nancy: quite true.

    @Francisco: thank you.

    @Marie: as do I.

    @Gemel: quite true.

    @Jan: definitely.

  9. ...stories during trying times.

  10. The numbers of dead are so sobering.
    Thanks for trying to help me with blogger.

  11. Wonderful war hero tribute ~ neat photos too !

    Living moment by moment,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  12. Poignant, especially when one's biography lasts from 1922-1944.

  13. La arquitectura del edificio tien un diseño muy interesante y me ha encantado.

    Detrás de esa gran guerra hubo una gran cantidad de víctimas y deben ser recordadas. Dentro de cada una de ellas, hay un drama que vive la familia de los que perdieron la vida en ella.

    Que tengas una buena semana, de inicio de mes.

  14. @Tom: definitely.

    @Sharon: very much so.

    @RedPat: hopefully the problem gets sorted soon.

    @Carol: thank you.

    @Revrunner: so near the end.

    @Ventana: thank you.

  15. So horrible and it is always the young who suffer the most.

  16. To understand the topic more deeply is a praise worthy goal.
    Glad to know you are protected friend

  17. Very moving William, these places are sacred. Thank you! Considering you weren't feeling that great at the time, you did a wonderful job on this post. Thank you and so good to hear you are vaccinated.

  18. A tremendous display. Quite an undertaking.

  19. I'm pleased that you've had your vaccination but sorry you felt unwell afterwards, hope you are feeling fine now.
    Many thanks for taking time to do this post.

    All the best Jan

    1. The first vaccination was relatively easy. The second was not.

  20. Stories of war are inevitably depressing.

  21. i often wonder who did decide the colors, materials and so forth when it came to the uniforms? i enjoy them. am i the only one? when my great aunt and my Dad ... totally different times of the Army but both in that green coloring ...nowadays they have really changed. i am thinking probably has to do with the area they work within, etc. but i wish u could pick their brain. ( ;

  22. What a fascinating exhibit, William. I'd love to see this.

  23. So interesting! It is wonderful their stories are preserved and shared.

  24. Great to give space for those personal stories:)