Letters in a Time of War
A major wartime remembrance event was to be taking place this week in Holland. This was to remember Operation Faust, a Canadian and Allied effort to feed starving Dutch citizens still occupied by Germans. The important 75th anniversary, had to be postponed because of the pandemic and rescheduled to next year.
The huge event was to be followed by events celebrating the Canadian Liberation on northern France and the Netherlands, and in turn the celebrations in the UK, Europe and here in Canada to commemorate the end of the European war, Victory in Europe or VE Day, May 8.
All those important public events have been cancelled as well due to restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemice, but their importance and significance is not forgotten
David McGuffin is executive producer of Letters in a Time of War, a project to bring to light the personal feeling and thoughts of Canadian service personnel and the people ‘at home.Listen
Along with co-founder David Henderson, the project gathers personal correspondence and has had them read at a special event where prominent Canadians read the letters to an audience of visitors.
McGuffin and co-founder David Henderson created a project calle ‘Letters in a Time of War’, which recounts the memories of Canadian soldiers and loved ones during the past great conflict, through social media, websites, and the major event at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa in early November prior to Remembrance Day.
Example of reading of a wartime letter YouTube
However, with public VE Day celebrations cancelled McGuffin says the organisation wanted to use the event to ask people to search their attics, and drawers, and storage trunks for old letters and send videos of them reading the letters, or email copies of the letters.
These are then being posted online at the website, youtube, twitter and instagram to ensure people do not forget this important anniversary and the sacrifices of those previous generations.
As we head towards the VE Day anniversary, the organisation is seeking contributions to the project with wartime letters you have.
- These can be recorded on smartphones/tablets/laptops.
- Introduce yourself. Tell us who wrote and who received the letter, and where and when it was sent (and any other context)
- keep it to 2:20 in total length (for social media posting purposes)
- Make the video in a quiet place (no other noise distractions)
- Avoid being backlit (don’t stand with a window or the sun behind you)
- email the videos to email@example.com
- Or tweet them to @war_letters with the hashtag #VictoryLetters