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2015

Anniversaries come and go, often without note. My own—birthdays, that is—have little meaning unless they end with a zero, and there can’t be many of those left.

Two major events will celebrate large anniversaries in 2015, though it’s likely that only very, very special interest groups will take note. One is the centennial of the sinking by German submarine of the RMS Lusitania, which went down with nearly two thousand aboard on May 8th, 1915, off the coast of Ireland on its way from Liverpool to New York. It will be celebrated in Agincourt, Iowa, four thousand miles away, because native son Anson Tennant was thought to have been among those casualties. In Agincourt’s Commons, there is a memorial to the Lusitania sinking, though it probably mystifies any who bother to notice it.

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Britain and Germany were at war then, so the Bosch commemorated the event with a medal that, curiously, got the date wrong. I wonder how my friends in Iowa will acknowledge the moment next May.

The other, even larger and more heroic event to be noted is the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt, which gave the community 1) its name, 2) the date of its incorporation in 1857, and 3) a butt-load of the associations and symbols that have shaped the community since that October 25th when it became a city. I’ve never found much worthwhile in Civil War reënactments; they just seem silly and politically incorrect these days. But a staging of the Battle of Agincourt may be a different kettle of fish altogether.

battle of agincourt

Whaduya think of some geeks in medieval tupperware thrashing it out with nerf and paint balls fifteen months from now? I’d watch from the comfort of a folding chair, if light refreshments were served. Where’s Hyacinth Bucket when you need her.

 


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