THIBODAUX, La. — The Ellender Memorial Library is hosting two local military-focused exhibits, including one from the National WWII Museum in New Orleans.
“My hope is that these exhibits will spark an interest in local and state history for students,” Ellender Memorial Library Director Elizabeth Batte said. “This region is full of so much rich history and hopefully this will help students gain a new appreciation for that.”
The Pelican State Goes to War is a traveling exhibit from the National WWII Museum, which, through multimedia and artifacts, takes the viewer through Louisiana’s contributions to the war. The exhibit will be in the library through Dec. 14. It is in the Faculty Lounge, to the right near the entrance to the building.
Among Louisiana’s contributions to the war were over $830 million to war bond drives, over 20,000 vessels, and more than a billion gallons of 100-octane aviation fuel.
Nicholls History Department Head Dr. Paul Wilson applied for the exhibit. Elender Memorial Library Archivist Clifton Theriot said this exhibit highlights the contributions of Louisiana soldiers and also workers from Louisiana factories.
“This exhibit affords Nicholls students an opportunity to see an exhibit curated by a national museum which focuses on Louisiana,” Theriot said. “This is a unique instance when the museum comes to the students instead of the students going to the museum.”
Cataloging Librarian Brandy Burbante and library specialist Angela Charron also put together the annual display, Veterans of Southeast Louisiana, which will be available until January. Its focus is on veterans and military history that ties to Nicholls and the Bayou Region.
The display includes a timeline of items from the Civil War through present day, including a cannon ball, helmets, uniforms and books. Viewers can scan QR codes to the Louisiana Digital Library for oral histories and ebooks from the library. The display is located on the first floor past the stairway.
“I’m thankful to be able to construct this display every year in the library,” said Burbante. “It is important for us to honor, preserve, and support all aspects of Nicholls and the community, including the history of local veterans and current Nicholls students who’ve served their country. It is also important to have this display in the library to highlight resources in the library including books from our collection and the Veterans of Southeast Louisiana Collection in the Archives.”
Nicholls students and community members of the Bayou Region are welcome to come view the displays. Face masks are required while in the building.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Nov. 3, 2021