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Arundel Museum reveals war’s hidden story

A fascinating display of First World War letters has opened at the Arundel Museum                                                  D14321418a

A fascinating display of First World War letters has opened at the Arundel Museum D14321418a

FOR a small town a century ago, Arundel’s commitment to serving King and country was remarkable.

Of the population of about 2,200, more than 600 volunteered to go off to war – and 93 paid the ultimate price.

Now the stories behind the lives of both those who died and those who survived is told in a new exhibition at Arundel Museum to mark the outbreak of the First World War.

Volunteers spent many hours researching in the museum, focusing particularly on material from the Stedman family.

Among a number of letters is one to the parents of Lieutenant George Francis Stedman from an army chaplain, informing them that their son had been wounded in the face and right shoulder by a bomb from an enemy aeroplane at Passchendaele, Belgium, in 1917.

“He was admitted to this hospital this morning and I can assure you he is in good hands and is being well looked after by very skilled surgeons and nurses. Everything that surgical skill can do for him will be done,” the chaplain writes.

Frank, as he was known, evidently made a good recovery and later that year was married.

Photographs, uniform, equipment and service records give a glimpse at the contribution made by Arundel families during the war.

On Sunday (August 10), the museum is holding a Come and Sing Day, during which some of the Stedman family letters will be read out. Call 01903 885866 for details.

 

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