ORANGE residents are extremely proud of the sacrifices made by relatives who signed up in World War I.
The task to find the names of all of Orange’s ex-services personnel from World War I is off to a strong start with more than 20 families coming forward in the first week since the Central Western Daily ran a story on the project.
Orange City Council has formed a working party in the lead-up to the 100-years to mark the start of the Great War in 1914 to ensure everyone from Orange who signed up is acknowledged in one honour roll.
“The response so far has been wonderful,” said librarian Jan Richards.
“We have even been contacted by someone living in Sydney who has already started putting together their own data base.
“He read the CWD online and contacted us immediately and that data base will prove to be extremely helpful,” she said.
“We have also had people bring in items to the front desk, keen to talk about their relative’s commitment to the war effort,” she said.
Ms Richards said the project is intended to not only acknowledge all the soldiers and nurses who had served in the war but to gather a picture of the home front with wives, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters left behind at a time when they had scant information coming back to Australia about the welfare of their loved one.
The working party, headed up by Cr Regg Kidd involves representatives from the Orange Historical Society, and the RSL who are helping compile all the names.
Ms Richards said Orange will draw on the official archives of the nation which already have the names of many of the soldiers who enlisted in Orange and whether or not they died on foreign battlefields or returned to Australia.
Elizabeth Griffin of the Orange Historical Society said already members have begun the painstaking task of documenting all the monuments in Orange cemetery which were erected by family members who had lost someone in the Great War who was buried overseas.
Churches, schools and community groups will also be called upon to contribute the names of those who may have appeared on their own honour rolls.