Appeal for war stories to create biggest ever digital history archive

tags: World War I, digital history, Imperial War Museum




The Imperial War Museum is to use the centenary of the first world war to launch an international appeal for private letters, diaries and photographs held by the families of those who served, with the aim of putting eight million personal stories online by the end of 2018.

The museum's aim is to collect a mass of personal information, much of which will have been stored away in people's cupboards and attics, and make it available to the public at the press of a button. The information submitted and the individual stories of family members will become part of a giant online library for use by historians and people interested in researching their own relatives' roles in the conflict.

The project – called Lives of the First World War and launching next February – will see the museum returning to its founding purpose but adapting to the internet age, in what is believed to be the biggest trawl for historical information ever undertaken. The museum was founded on 5 March 1917, when the War Cabinet approved a proposal by Sir Alfred Mond MP for the creation of a national war museum to record the events still taking place during the Great War and to honour those who had lost their lives and those who survived....



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