Friday, 6 August 2010

Follow Friday: War Memorials on Devon

Devon Heritage is a wonderful site with records relating to people and places in the county of Devon.  As part of its treasure chest (perhaps I should have posted this item on Treasure Chest Thursday? LOL), there are pages devoted to the various war memorials that are scattered all over the county.  War memorials were originally erected to commemorate those who died in the 1914-1918 war (World War I), and almost every city and even small town and village had their own monument with the names of locals who had died.  In a way this was to help assuage the huge upswell of grief that followed the war; almost every family lost someone they loved.  Many of those who died were buried in mass graves, or their bodies were never found.

Most parishes have their own page, which includes a photo of the memorial itself, sometimes a photo of the names thereon, and a transcription of those names as well.  Although most Memorials only contain the name of the soldier and where he died, this site also gives some background on the soldier as well.

An epitaph which is frequently found on War Memorials, often quoted in church services on Remembrance Sunday, is part of the poem by Laurence Binyon:
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

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