KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The debut of a pair of special exhibitions – one focusing on the drawings of French school children during the Great War and another featuring the remarkable photographs of renowned photographer Michael St Maur Sheil – as well as the latest event in the Operation series focusing on vodka and the Russian revolution are among the March offerings from the National World War I Museum and Memorial.
Michael St Maur Sheil’s portraits of WWI battlefields are featured in Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys, 1917-1918, a free outdoor photographic exhibition debuting Friday, March 31 on the Museum’s Memorial Courtyard. The exhibition tells of the healed scars of the First World War through our only remaining living witness: the fields of battle themselves. Once places of devastating violence, we now see landscapes of great beauty, testament to peace and remembrance. Sheil’s past exhibitions in London, Paris and other locations have been viewed by millions of people across the world. A second version of the exhibition will tour several cities in the United Kingdom in 2017, beginning in London at the famous Guildhall Yard in April. To open the exhibition on March 31, the Museum is hosting a free program at 6 p.m. featuring Sheil, Museum President and CEO Dr. Matthew Naylor and Museum Senior Curator Doran Cart.
When the U.S. entered WWI in April 1917, a school teacher in the Montmartre district of Paris asked his students to write essays and express in drawings how this would affect their lives. A century later, the Le Vieux Montmartre Historical Society loans 30 of these drawings and two essays on this subject to the Museum for a special exhibition entitled Vive l’Amérique! French Children Welcome Their American Ally, which opens Tuesday, March 21 in the Ellis Gallery.
On March 15 at 6 p.m., the Museum offers its latest Operation series event: Operation: Romanov. At the centennial of the Russian Revolution, guests may imbibe in a vodka infused revolutionary look at prohibition in Russia during WWI and the rise of local distilleries. The event includes a discussion with Museum President and CEO Dr. Matthew Naylor, author/historian Patricia Herlihy and Tom’s Town Distillery’s David Epstein, food and drinks featuring Tom’s Town Distillery. Tickets are $20 ($15 for Museum members) and available at theworldwar.org.
On Sunday, March 5 at 2 p.m., Rabbi Jacques Cukierkorn (Temple Israel of Greater Kansas City) shares historical and contemporary images of some of the more interesting wooden synagogues of Ashkenazi culture and uses them as a way to discuss the relations between the various social groups of Eastern Europe in the free program The Schul of Your Ancestors: Exploring the Architecture of Ashkenazi Wooden Synagogues.
At 6 p.m. on March 30, the Museum hosts A World Reborn: Globalizing Ireland’s Revolution. The free event features a lecture by prominent Irish writer and historian Dr. Fearghal McGarry as he explores the critical issues to what extent must Ireland’s revolution be understood within a global, as well as nation-state, framework, and how this might be achieved.
In March, the Museum offers several family-friendly activities and programs. At 2 p.m. each Saturday, history is brought to life in the Hands-on History program in which kids of all ages are invited to handle Great War artifacts. On Sunday, March 12, the Living History Volunteer Corps will be on site to share stories of the Great War era and make history come to life! At 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 18, the Museum’s Story Time program returns with a reading of The Blessing Cup.
Other events at the Museum during the month include a Film Friday screening of Doctor Zhivago (Friday, March 10) and complimentary gallery tours every Thursday at 2 p.m.
The National World War I Museum and Memorial holds the most diverse collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second-oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history and personal experiences of the war.
March National World War I Museum and Memorial Events
- Every Wednesday: World War Wednesdays (all tickets $8)
- Every Thursday: Complimentary Tour, 2 p.m. (FREE with paid admission)
- Every Saturday: Hands-on History, 2 p.m. (FREE)
- Thursday, Mar. 2: Pershing Lecture Series: Lawfare, 6:30 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
- Sunday, Mar. 5: The Schul of Your Ancestors: Exploring the Architecture of Ashkenazi Wooden Synagogues, 2 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
- Friday, Mar. 10: Film Friday: Doctor Zhivago, 6:30 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
- Sunday, Mar. 12: Day in the Life, All Day (FREE)
- Wednesday, Mar. 15: Operation: Romanov, 6 p.m. (Tickets $20 ,$15 for members)Saturday, Mar. 18: Story Time: The Blessing Cup, 11 a.m. (FREE with RSVP)
- Thursday, Mar. 30: A World Reborn: Globalizing Ireland’s Rebellion, 6 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
- Friday, Mar. 31: Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace, 6 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
About the National World War I Museum and Memorial
The National World War I Museum and Memorial is America’s leading institution dedicated to remembering, interpreting and understanding the Great War and its enduring impact on the global community. The Museum holds the most diverse collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second-oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history and experiences of the war. The Museum takes visitors of all ages on an epic journey through a transformative period and shares deeply personal stories of courage, honor, patriotism and sacrifice. Designated by Congress as America’s official World War I Museum and Memorial and located in downtown Kansas City, Mo., the National World War I Museum and Memorial inspires thought, dialogue and learning to make the experiences of the Great War era meaningful and relevant for present and future generations. To learn more, visit theworldwar.org.