A War on Two Fronts

The first museum exhibit by The Athenaeum Press of Coastal Carolina University, “A War on Two Fronts: Fighting for Victory at Home and Abroad,” is a multimedia exhibition that focuses on the overlooked, underappreciated and uncelebrated black veterans of World War II. A celebration for the launch of the exhibit will be held Thursday, May 21 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Horry County Museum. The exhibit will be open to the public at the Horry County Museum through August. SC Humanities helped support this project with a Mini Grant in April 2015.

“A War on Two Fronts” offers a window into the segregated world of the black infantry of World War II. By situating these oral histories into the larger context of patriotism, segregation and civil rights, the exhibit depicts the journey of these men and women from their efforts to join the war, their experiences during basic training, their acts of valor overseas, and their postwar lives. Featured within the archive are prominent South Carolina figures, including Judge Matthew Perry, noted scholar Herman Blake, and Thomas P. Stoney, veteran and former resident of Charleston, S.C.

During the opening celebration and exhibit launch, audience members will have a chance to meet with Michael Moore, veteran and son of WWII soldier Spencer Moore. CCU students who researched, designed, edited and installed the exhibit will also talk about their experiences working on this innovative production. The event is open to the community, but reservations are required for the reception following the presentation. Guests planning to attend are asked to RSVP at 843-349-5099 or athenaeumpress@coastal.edu for the reception after the event by Friday, May 15

This project is the latest collaborative effort from The Athenaeum Press of Coastal Carolina University, a university publishing lab now in its third year. The exhibit is based on oral histories and archives collected by CCU history professor Maggi Morehouse, who has conducted extensive research on Southern history and culture. Students from design, history, English, photography, communication and digital media developed and produced the project in collaboration with CCU faculty members. The resulting project brings these 70-year-old histories to a new audience and sheds light on the legacy of these men who fought for their country while being unrecognized by the very men they were fighting alongside.

The mission of SC Humanities is to enrich the cultural and intellectual lives of all South Carolinians. SC Humanities programs and initiatives are balanced, reflecting sensitivity to the diversity of ideas, encourage open dialogue, demonstrate integrity, and are ethical in operations.

Image courtesy of Maggi M. Morehouse