THIS DAY IN VIRGINIA HISTORY
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August 09, 1919
Henry McIlwaine Promoted the Work of the Virginia War History Commission
In this circular letter, Henry McIlwaine (1864–1934), state librarian and chairman of the Virginia War History Commission's Committee on War Letters, Diaries, and Incidents, sought to clarify his previous request of newspapers to print columns featuring the remembrances of servicemen and women in their communities who served in World War I. Instead of printing letters written during the war, as he hinted some newspapers had done, McIlwaine wanted to collect postwar opinions of the conflict that would be “candid.” He noted that future chroniclers “will need these opinions … just as much as they will need what are supposed to be statements of fact.”