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Oxford remembers its own

By Heather Rivers, Woodstock Sentinel-Review



WOODSTOCK — One hundred events for 100 years.
Oxford County heritage sites and museums have pledged to host 100 events between 2014 and 2018 to honour the 100th anniversary of World War One.
The website Oxford Remember Oxford’s Own, officially went live on Remembrance Day, as the official site of local information and events related to the anniversary.
The brainchild of Patricia Phelps, curator of the Annadale National Historic Site in Tillsonburg, historical sites and museums all across the county have pledged to take part in the event.
“We’re very excited about it. We’re hoping to raise awareness for current citizens of the county, to realize the past sacrifices of citizens,” Phelps said. “It was the war that changed the world and affected every family in the county. They thought it would end quickly. They thought they’d be home for Christmas and it was five years later.”
Events and programs will be organized and implemented by staff and volunteers of the museums, archives, libraries and historical societies, along with any other interested partners.
In Woodstock, Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and Tavistock, the focus will be on 168th Battalion, comprised of four companies from the four different areas. Known as Oxford’s Own, it formed as a response to the war.
In Norwich, home of the Society of Friends, the focus will be on “the whole idea of home front and conscientious objection.” 
The five areas of Oxford County have each pledged to host four events for five years.
“That equals 100 by the end of 2018,” Phelps said.
Phelps said events would include countywide initiatives such as planting poppies or a juried art show featuring poppies as the subject.
Other events include garden parties, travelling exhibits, and music from the time period.
In Ingersoll curator Scott Gillies said events will include Music from the Messhall at the legion, and lecture on the Norsworthy brothers, weather permitting, at the Ingersoll Rural Cemetery.
“It’s going to be an exciting five years,” he said.
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