Showing posts with the label WWI

Veteran's Day: Marking a Point in History

The guns in The War to End All Wars went silent on November 11 th , 1918. Even though the French signed the Treaty of Versailles on June 28 th , 1919 the fighting ended seven months prior. At this time, much of Europe was in shambles and the war marked a fundamental shift into a new economy by destroying older state institutions. Europe was rebuilt away from the traditional monarchical models and into an international economic framework. WWII President Wilson proclaimed the day a holiday in 1919 with the words, “ To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations… ” The war was seen as resulting from 1.) the assignation of Archduke Francis Ferdinand, 2.) rise of nationa

The Painting Man With a Donkey by Horace Moore-Jones

The painting was dedicated to “our hero comrade Murphy (Simpson)”. The work took a number of different names such as “Murphy and his donkey”, “Simpson and his donkey”, “Henderson and his donkey” or “Man with a donkey”. The origins of the painting have been somewhat of a debate among scholars. However, what is known is that the painter was shown a picture of a man carrying wounded soldiers from Shrapnel Gully to Anzac and used this as the basis of his painting.  The object of the painting is John Simpson who was a stretcher bearer with the Austrian-New Zealand Army. John was a deserter of the merchant navy but eventually became part of the army as a way of getting back to England. The day after landing at Gallipoli Peninsula on 25 April 1915 he noticed a wounded comrade. Having experience with donkeys from boyhood work, he loaded his friend on a nearby donkey and brought him to safety. Apparently, John Simpson was a brave fellow who earned a reputation from his military f