A new book is capturing the Casey commemorations for 100 Years of Anzac – and it’s not being sold.
The Mount Evelyn RSL received a grant so that a copy could be donated to each school, historical society, library and RSL in the electorate, so that for generations to come people can learn how the community commemorated such an important event in the nation’s history.
Historian and Mount Evelyn RSL secretary Anthony McAleer said that during the centenary of World War I, the federal electorate named after WWI veteran Lord Richard Casey, was one of the most proactive electorates in the country.
“It began with the first centenary event in Australia, the memorials at the Lillydale Lake to honour the militia camp of February 1914 run by John Monash,” he said.
Over the next five years, organisations in the electorate held memorial services, concerts, unveilings, launches and talks.
They published books and websites, created memorials, signs, avenues of honour and commemorative quilts and developed exhibitions as well as painted murals.
“Most notable were the 60 or so commemorative services organised by the Mount Evelyn and Lilydale RSLs that paid tribute to the local fatal casualties listed on six war memorials in the area, on the anniversary of each of the days they died on active service,” Mr McAleer said.
The Mount Evelyn RSL collected all the speeches made at the hundreds of events between 2014 and 2019 and published them all in a volume, Casey Commemorates – How the Electorate of Casey Commemorated World War One.
The book also includes historical images and photos of the events.
Mr McAleer and Casey MP Tony Smith wrote most of these speeches.
The book carries a foreword by Australian War Memorial Brendan Nelson.