2014 will mark the 100th anniversary of WOI. The British Imperial War Museum has used this occasion 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 project will be called Lives Of The First World War and will start next February. The information submitted and the individual stories of family members will become part of a giant online library. Crowdsourcing has become very popular over the last few years. But this project will be very big and very useful for people who want to find out more about relatives fighting in WOI. These people will get access to a very large database.
When the British newspaper The Guardian found out about this project, they were fond of the concept and started a similar project. On their crowdsourcing site guardianwitness they invite people to share stories, photographs, letters and diaries. I think these two projects are very interesting because they give people the chance to rediscover WOI. I hope Belgian museums and/or newspapers will follow this example.
I have already found one very cool item. A painting that represents the small Belgian city Braine-le-Château in the year 1918.
The painting was made by Reginald Hanson Fawcett. He served in the Royal Engineers in France and Belgium and travelled with a small artist’s pad and watercolour paints.