On display in our rotating gallery until early May is a special exhibit about the Nebraska Panhandle’s involvement in World War One. This exhibit was chosen especially by the Executive Director, Amanda Gibbs, who is currently in pursuit of her Master’s Degree in Museum Studies. This exhibit was selected as her museum project – a necessary component to the degree program.
“I selected this World War One exhibit because growing up, I felt I never had a true education on it. Many times it gets confused or lumped in with World War Two, so there are many people who don’t realize this was war is separate,” Amanda explains. “This year marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War, and I felt that Legacy of the Plains needed to do something to commemorate this historic event.”
Inside the rotating gallery space is a large, life-size trench replica, reproduction recruitment posters, era uniforms, medals of both the United States and Germany, and a list of names of those who served. “I started the research over a year ago and began compiling as many records and sources of local area veterans. My sources includes documents from other museums, Nebraska State Historical Society, WWI draft records, area newspapers, and books by local authors who recorded the events. On the back wall is my list, organized alphabetically by last name for four counties in the Panhandle: Banner, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, and Sioux. I chose to limit myself to only these four as there was much research that went in to make sure I had as accurate of information as possible. Even still, I am led to believe that there are individuals who are missing from this list. Also, marked on this list are those who made the ultimate sacrifice.”
The exhibit also features information of the Spanish Influenza, Miss Bish’s role with this pandemic, the Red Cross, and efforts made on the home front.
Legacy of the Plains Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 9a to 5p until the end of March. Beginning April 2nd, the museum will resume Summer hours of Monday through Saturday, 9a to 5p, and Sunday from 1p to 5p. There is no charge to view this exhibit, but donations are suggested.