OTTAWA-HURON TRACT HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION – INTRODUCTION (VE DAY)

V.E. (Victory in Europe) Day

An Historical Perspective, by Joan Abernethy 

Our world has changed a great deal since VE Day 75 years ago. Yet, in some ways, the world remains very much the same. 

VE Day denotes Victory in Europe Day, May 8, 1945, the end of that awful conflict of WWII that killed 70-85 million people. We recognize and commemorate this date as symbolic of the victory of liberty over tyranny, yet remain acutely aware of how tyranny continues to threaten us. 

Our view of the cruel, unusual and arbitrary use of power and control changes as time passes and it is often only in retrospect that we appreciate its full meaning and its impact on our heritage and on our culture. 

From an historical perspective, we acknowledge that the many masks of tyranny have fooled us and we anticipate they will continue to fool us in our limited perspectives in the future. We confess the limits to our understanding and that our vision of the future is short and dim. 

We recognize the vital contribution to WWII and local culture and heritage of Canada’s local First Nations. Chi-miigwech. 

Our exhibit displays a collection of local and Canadian as well as British, French, German, Dutch, American, Soviet, Polish, Japanese and other artifacts and stories that reflect the rich Canadian heritage that is the legacy of WWII in Canada and in our local communities. 

Our exhibit is a vignette, a snapshot, a view of history from a local perspective. It is not intended to be complete or wholly representative. 

Throughout our history, place persists. The relative permanence of geographical landmarks, architecture and the stories local structures tell anchor our shared heritage and orient our disparate perspectives to a common history. To that end, our exhibit includes a vignette of local place. 

Digital exhibits offer a unique opportunity not only to share local stories but also to expand shared heritage. We hope you enjoy our exhibit.

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