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Chatham Cultural Museum received this year’s Community Heritage Medal of Honour for developing an online database documenting veterans’ memories.Chatham Cultural Museum received this year’s Community Heritage Medal of Honour for developing an online database documenting veterans’ memories.

Online database provides access to veterans’ stories and photos

A Chatham museum’s work to document stories of the region’s role in the First and Second World Wars has been awarded a medal of honour by the UWindsor history department.

The UWindsor Community Heritage Medal of Honour is now on display at the Chatham Cultural Museum, celebrating the Kent Regiment of the Imperial Order of Daughters of the Empire (IODE) and the museum, for jointly developing the interactive community database, Gathering Our Heroes.

The annual award is given in recognition of outstanding achievement in raising the profile of local history and heritage in Windsor or the surrounding counties. 

“It’s important to recognize the vital historical work that people in our community are doing to preserve the past,” says History Department head, Miriam Wright.

The project is led by local historian Jerry Hind, and is comprised of more than 11,000 stories and photos from the men and women in the Chatham-Kent area who went to war. The site allows users to correct and add stories, similar to Wikipedia.

Dr. Wright said it is important to have community groups working together to further knowledge of history. She says there are plans in the works to place university history students into community groups in order to expand their scholarship of local history.

Read more about “Gathering Our Heroes,” in the Chatham Daily News .