As we see from Wilmington’s Sunday Star, one hundred years ago this week the world is horrified at the sinking of the passenger ship Lusitania. The Star is saturated with aspects of the tragedy. First reports list deaths at 1346, although it was later determined to be 1198 deaths of passengers and crew. See yesterday’s post by my colleague Jennifer for more information on the Lusitania and on a 1915 British propaganda medal in the DHS collection.
As we do each week, three soldiers from Delaware are honored in this post. This week we highlight the service records of Private Ebert Holmes, Sgt. Major Charles Elbert Hollis, and Private Frank H. Balling. The records you see are scans of the originals. They are likely the only ones in existence. The same is true of the photographs shown each week. It is likely these photos are not even known to exist by the descendants of the soldier depicted. Therefore these photos and records serve as a resurrection of memory, a resurfacing of forgotten heroes. Historical societies serve not only the living community. They promote a reverence for and preserve the dignity of those citizens who have come before us.