New WWI exhibit honoring black soldiers in Quincy - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

New WWI exhibit honoring black soldiers in Quincy

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A helmet and photos from the exhibit. A helmet and photos from the exhibit.
Clothing worn during World War I. Clothing worn during World War I.
People listening to the presentation. People listening to the presentation.
Smith speaks of the importance of the exhibit. Smith speaks of the importance of the exhibit.
The History Museum in Quincy. The History Museum in Quincy.
QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

The 100th anniversary of the end of World War I is in November.

Researchers at the Historical Society in Quincy presented their new exhibit Sunday afternoon, honoring more than 150 black men from Quincy and Adams County who served in Europe. 

Historians explored the experiences of both the black soldiers at war and their families who waited at home for news and their safe return. 

Jean Kay, collection manager of the Historical Society of Quincy and Adams County, said many have offered items to display in the exhibit.

Kay has learned about a little less than half of the black soldiers in Adams County and hopes the community can help continue the effort.

"Research never really ends," Kay said. "I's still going on, but it's taken us months." 

Michael Smith, another researcher, is happy to know that people of color from Quincy were important to the war. 

"I want people to understand that how dare you ignore a whole group of people who were also there," said Smith. 

Kay urged families still living in the area to provide any items to fill in the gaps, such as copies of letters they wrote to home. 

Another event at the museum on March 25th at 2 p.m. will explore the new roles of women in Illinois during World War I.

The Historical Society requested that those planning to attend call ahead so staff have a head count.

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