An Abbotsford museum has launched a year-long exhibit on the “often overlooked” stories of the only 10 known Canadian Sikh soldiers who served during WWI.
Canadian Sikhs in World War I – The Forgotten Story opened at the Sikh Heritage Museum at Abbotsford’s Gur Sikh Temple National Historic Site on Sunday.
According to the director of UFV’s Centre for Indo Canadian Studies, Satwinder Bains, the exhibit explores the role of each individual Sikh soldier with the use of narratives and stories.
“Perhaps by looking at the individual soldier, we can gain an understanding of the immense sacrifice,” Bains said in a statement. “The time period of the war, from 1914-1918, was a period of intense racial strife in Canadian history. Indians, along with other ‘coloured’ peoples, were simply not welcome in Canada as participating citizens.”
“The fact that these Sikh soldiers even served for Canada in the Great War begs historic recognition.”
The exhibit will remain open for the year.