HENDERSON — “Voices of Conscience: Peace Witness in the Great War,” a traveling exhibit, will open Sunday at the Mennonite Heritage Museum and Park in Henderson.
A opening ceremony is set for 3 p.m. and will include a short program, time to view the exhibit, and refreshments.
This exhibit remembers the witness of peace-minded people against the First World War from 1914 to 1918. This witness included men and women, religious believers and secular humanitarians, political protesters and sectarian separatists. They resisted U.S. involvement in the war, the enactment of military conscription, the war bond drives, and the denial of freedom of speech under the Espionage and Sedition Acts.
For this resistance many suffered community humiliation, federal imprisonment, and mob violence at the hands of a war-crusading American public. This exhibit lifts up the prophetic insights and the personal courage of World War I peace protesters, and suggests parallels to the culture of war and violence in our world today.
The exhibit is organized in 10 themes that encourage exploration and reflection. The theme modules surround a recreation of an Alcatraz Prison cell, the site where Hutterite conscientious objectors were punished for refusing military participation. Text and quotes provide interpretation and raise provocative questions for viewers while large-scale graphics and photomurals immerse visitors in the historical experience of witnessing for peace during “total war.”
“Voices of Conscience” premiered in Kansas City, Kan., in 2017 and has been hosted throughout the United States in museums, churches, colleges and universities. It will remain in Henderson through mid-September.
There is no admission charge, but donations are always welcome.
Henderson Mennonite Heritage Museum and Park is located at 720 Road B, just one mile south of Henderson’s I-80 exit #342. For more information, call (402) 723-5694 or (402) 723-4252.