Concert honors veterans with 'Songs of World War I'
During the lead up to World War I, music became a means of whipping up patriotic support to send young men and women "over there."
From borrowed British songs earlier in the war to the most influential American songs of the time, the Chicago band History Singers will cover them all in a special performance for the DuPage County Historical Museum.
The "Songs of World War I" Veterans Day concert will start at 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 11, at the museum, 102 E. Wesley St., Wheaton.
History Singers is composed of John and Kathryn Atwood, who have taken their passions for music and history and combined them into programs performed at more than 100 libraries, historical societies and ceremonies.
"All of our programs are almost like time travel in that the songs of a particular time and place can transport one into the collective soul of a society," Kathryn Atwood said.
"This program is no different, as we will be presenting songs sung during the war by the soldiers who were involved in the war from its beginning, as well as those who were waiting for them on the home front. The second half of the program will present war-related songs written and sung by Americans during our brief but influential involvement."
In addition to the performance, the museum also will present information on its "Voices of DuPage" oral history initiative. The Voices of DuPage is a countywide effort to encourage the collection of DuPage County histories from community members and to make those histories accessible to all.
While a primary focus of the project is to collect and record the memories and stories of DuPage County, an additional focus will be to collect the histories of the people who now call DuPage County home. The stories of DuPage County's history are slowly being forgotten as time goes by, and this project is determined to keep that from happening.
"In 2018, the museum (will be) actively collecting stories from the men and women of our military and their families," curator Ashley Downing said. "These individuals have given a lot for this country. Their memories are vital to understand, from a first-person perspective, the history of some very important events while providing a personal perspective.
"We want to preserve those stories before they are lost. We want the opportunity for future generations to understand the strength, commitment and sacrifices for freedom that these individuals endured."
For information and to register, visit dupagemuseum.org/special.htm or call (630) 510-4941.