World War I in Photos: A Century Later
One hundred years after the start of the Great War, none of the participants remain alive, and we are left with aging relics, fading photographs, scarred landscapes being reclaimed by nature, and memorials and graveyards across the globe.
Images: Forgotten fronts of the Great War
Image gallery: The First World War was fought not only in Europe, but on several continents, making it a truly global war.
Never before seen WWI images surface - Photographed by a German officer
A collection of never before seen images of WWI photographed by a German officer have surfaced. The photos were taken by the great grandfather of Dean Putney, who hopes to turn the rare collection into a book. Putney has already created a Tumblr blog with the photos as he scans them in, and launched a Kickstarter to fund the book. In total, there are nearly 1,000 unpublished photos by Putney's great grandfather, Walter Koessler. "Walter was trained an architect and had an expert, aesthetic eye. As an officer in the reserve artillery battalion, he took advantage of tons of opportunities to capture life in the trenches, his comrades preparing for war, and the devastating results of their actions."
Unseen World War I photos: Destroyed Cathedrals
Unseen World War I photos: Destroyed Cathedrals.
First world war in historic Guardian infographics
A century ago, Europe was on the verge of war. For newspaper graphic artists given tiny space - and only a few years after the papers started running photographs - it presented fresh challenges: how do you illustrate France to a readership which had largely never been there? How do you explain the latest tactics as war becomes an industrialised, mechanised slaughter? This is a selection of how the Manchester Guardian did it.
Rare World War I photos found inside antique camera by photographer Anton Orlov
A blogger passionate about historic photography techniques found some old photos inside his newly-purchased camera. As in, World War I old. Anton Orlov was cleaning the Jumelle Belllieni stereoscopic camera that he'd bought at an antique store a few days prior, and found the images completely by accident. "While viewing the images in their negative form it was difficult to say for sure what was on each of them, but after scanning them it became clear that they dated back to the First World War and were taken somewhere in France," Orlov wrote.
Rare photographs showing the first tanks being tested in Lincoln fetch £4,600 at auction
A set of rare photographs showing the first tanks being tested in Lincoln has smashed its guide price at auction. The album, which contains 50 black and white press pictures of the First World War tank, fetched £4,600. The collection illustrates the development of the machine at Lincoln engineering firm William Foster and Co, which famously created the Mark I tank, nicknamed "Mother", in 141 days during 1916. Photographs of unusual prototypes and failed attempts to cross trenches are among the most revealing inclusions in the album.
Trench Warfare in color photos in a new book edited by historian Peter Walther
What the public remembers, it remembers in pictures. Wars, even more than other events, tend to survive in the popular imagination as an archive of images. When it comes to remembering the World War I, most of us have had to content ourselves with a visual inheritance limited to black and white photography. No longer. In a new book edited by historian Peter Walther, a set of color images from the wartime photographer Hands Hilderbrand will be published for the first time. The pictures force us to alter our impression of the war as a gray and cloudy affair, confronting us instead with an unsettling portait of devastating iridescence.
33 World War I photos from U.S. National Archives
33 World War I photos from U.S. National Archives.
More unseen photographs from the First World War
In 2009 the haunting faces of unknown British soldiers of the Somme emerged from the mists of time and battle to gaze from the pages of The Independent. The lost Somme photographs – 400 glass negatives of the period 1915-1916 rescued from a trash pile in France – sparked interest all over the globe. The images were the most visited item on The Independent website in 2009. As a result, people in the Somme département have now come forward with more old photographic plates. A selection of these new images is published here for the first time: a second "lost platoon" of nameless British soldiers.
World War I photographs saved by quick-thinking removalist in Canada
Dozens of First World War photos, including some from Australia's Gallipoli campaign, have been saved by a quick-thinking removalist. Max Madden, an Australian who runs a removalist business in Vancouver, was moving Canadian man Trevor Pilley to a retirement home when he noticed the historic black and white photographs inside an album marked "Dardanelles - Landing of Australians and New Zealanders at Anzac". The pictures - taken by Trevor Pilley's father, Charles, who was a WW1 machine gunner in a biplane - were in a pile of belongings to be sent to a consignment store for auction.
Amazing First World War photos uncovered - and for sale
An album of amazing photos taken by a WWI soldier has been discovered - and shows the men having a great time. They show the troops swimming, playing cycle polo and sightseeing - a far cry from the usual images of muddy trenches of the Western Front. The photos belonged to Wally Langrish, whose war took him in 1915 from Aldershot, Hampshire, to India and Mesopotamia. They show the soldier of the 1/9th (Cyclist) Battalion of the Hampshire Regiment - one of many territorial units replacing regular units that were called home - forming a football team in Bangalore and touring the Taj Mahal.
Items discovered from Fromelles in photographs
Items discovered from Fromelles in photographs.
Images of Great War's lost generation captured by the UK's first female Press photographer
These photographs show members of a "lost generation" as they set off to do their duty for King and Country on the Western Front, where the life expectancy was 3 weeks. Among the images is a rare photo which shows Rudyard Kipling's son John in military uniform and wearing glasses. John had been refused a commission (poor eyesight), but his father pulled strings to make sure he became an officer. Just weeks later John was killed at the Battle of Loos in 1915, his death prompting his father to write the words: "If any question why we died/Tell them, because our fathers lied." This unique WW1 photo archive is the work of Christina Broom, Britain's first female Press photographer.
First World War photostream by LAC / BAC
World War I flickr photostream by LAC / BAC (Library and Archives Canada, Bibliothèque et Archives Canada).
Military Censorship of Photographs in World War I [link to PDF document]
During the course of the First World War, tens of thousands of photos were withheld by the U.S. military. These included pictures that might have revealed troop movements or military capabilities, pictures that were liable to be used in enemy propaganda, or those that could affect military or public morale. The development of military controls on publication of photographs during WWI was described in a 1926 U.S. Army report that includes dozens of images that had been withheld. See "The Military Censorship of Pictures: Photographs that came under the ban during the World War – and why" by Lt. Col. Kendall Banning, U.S. Army Signal Reserve Corps, 1926.
Funny World War I photographs
Funny First World War photos -thread at Axis History Forum.
WWI photographs of British Commander General William Birdwood up for auction
A large photograph collection of battle scenes from the First World War has come up for auction. The collection once belonged to British Commander General William Birdwood, who had a distinguished military career and commanded the Australian and New Zealand forces at the Battle of Gallipoli in Turkey in 1915. Birdwood accumulated a collection of 600 war photos from the various fronts and campaigns of the war. Many of the pictures show ANZAC troops in action, while tracking the war's industrial revolution illustrating the motorbikes, battle tanks, and planes used in the fighting.
Photographs, rescued from dump, reveal black British Tommy at the Somme
At first sight, there may seem to be nothing unusual about this photo, saved from a rubbish skip in France. Look, though, at the British soldier on the left. He is black: a very rare example of an image of a black "Tommy" from World War I. The picture is one of nearly 400 snaps of British soldiers on the eve of, and during, the Battle of the Somme in 1916. The photographs, all preserved on glass plates, lay forgotten in the attic of a barn 10 miles behind the Somme battlefields for 90 years. When the barn changed owners in 2007, they were tossed away. Passers-by collected a few and eventually the historical value of the plates was recognized.
Unique set of First World War photos goes on display at Prague Castle
An exhibit at Prague Castle reveals never before seen collection of photographs from World War I. Taken by an anonymous Czech soldier 1916-1917, the set is a rare and touching portrayal of one of the bloodiest conflicts in military history. "World War One on Foot" -exhibition presents some 150 digitally processed photos, selected and blown up from 500 original glass negatives. All of them were taken by an unknown Czech officer of the Austro-Hungarian army. The WW1 photos show everyday scenes of life on the battlefield: troops in training, at rest and on the march - military equipment and machinery and many other moments.
Frank Hurley's photograph reveals trench horrors
Two rare WWI photos went on show for the first time at the National Gallery of Victoria. The photographs, by Australian adventurer and war artist Frank Hurley, reveal the horrors of trench warfare, and were acquired by the NGV from a Sydney collector. One image, An episode after the Battle of Zonnebeke (1917), is a good example of early photographic innovation. To create the image, Hurley overlaid 3-4 negatives. The photo shows a battle scene with soldiers charging out of trenches, bombs exploding and biplanes flying overhead. The soldiers in the foreground are from one negative, the bomb blast from another, and the planes from a third.
Behind enemy lines: the German view of the First World War
I never took much interest in the photo album full of pics of the World War I that I inherited - even though, strangely, the photos were taken by a German. The album belonged to Brigadier-General John Gordon Geddes, my great uncle, who served in the Royal Artillery. In late March 1919, Geddes went to Nideggen, a village near Düren. He'd been told that a war photographer lived in a cottage there and he went there and, as he put it, "ordered a lot as they were intensely interesting - they were taken this time last year, when the Boche attacked us." He had never seen anything like them. Nor had the photography experts at the Imperial War Museum.
Rare photographs of Lancashire World War I soldiers on display
Photographs showing Lancashire's Territorial Army soldiers in the First World War are on display for the first time. Pictures discovered deep in the archives at the Queen's Lancashire Regiment Museum in Preston, show territorial soldiers from across Lancashire in Western Front trenches. The never before seen photographs are taking centre stage at an exhibition marking 100 years of the Territorial Army. As well as highlighting such stories of bravery, curator Jane Davies said the pictures told, as no words could, the atmosphere of the trenches and the conditions that had to be tolerated.
Riddle over 500 First World War pictures found in Kent
500 WWI photos, found at a former photographic studio in Kent after being "lost" 80 years, are being placed on display to solve the mystery behind them. Historians struggled to id the soldiers but assumed they were local troops, but research revealed they showed soldiers from 58 regiments. The pictures were all taken by Charles and Henry Essenhigh Corke at their studio. During the Great War, the town had several hospitals treating troops and it's thought soldiers might have had their photos taken while recovering. A number of the portraits have been id'd, including Military Cross winner William Blackmore.
Gary Nelson logs almost 700,000 photos of veterans' graves for Web site
Not everyone finds the Gary Nelson's photographs uplifting, but he thinks they are needed to remind people of the cost of war. Over the last 3 years he has taken almost 700,000 photos of veterans' graves or monuments for the "findagrave.com" site. Touring the world on his own dime, he has visited over 250 cemeteries to photograph the graves of soldiers from all over the world who fought in many wars. For the last several years his photos have been posted on Findagrave.com's International Wargraves Photography Project, but now Nelson plans to get his own site "thefallenremembered.org", up and running by the end of the year.
The amazing pictures of Britain in colour for the very first time
Seeing the world captured in colour is something most take for granted. But it was not until 1907 that autochrome (the process through which colour photographs were first produced) was invented in Paris. --- Photo #1: Returning heroes: The Union Jack and the French Tricolour flutter above the lines of troops marching through Kinghtsbridge during the First World War victory parade in 1919. --- Photo #4: Party time: A crowd gathers near Big Ben during the 1919 victory celebrations.
Hundreds of Australian WW1 film negatives discovered
A goldmine of Australian military history has been discovered. The material includes hundreds of film negatives, kept in a biscuit tin in a garage since the end of the Great War. The photos, by Jack Grinton, include shots from the Somme and Villers-Bretonneux. The collection includes the camera used by Sgt Grinton to record his war - against all regulations. There is also a wallet and postcards he had in battledress pocket that show the hole left by a chunk of German shrapnel that wounded him. The wallet and postcards saved his life - and the shrapnel is still tucked into the wallet.
Photographic memories from the Land of Israel in World War I
Photo album obtained by late archeologist Pesach Bar-Adon holds images from the Land of Israel 90 years ago, when the First World War I had a huge effect on the area. --- (Pic #4) Jamal Pasha, commander of the Syria district and commander of the Ottoman Fourth Army during WWI, at a reception. (Pic #5) In January 1915, a large Turkish force made its way with camel and horse units towards the Suez Canal, carrying rafts. They got the boats to the water, before an Anglo-Indian force caused them to escape, leading to the failure of the first Turkish offensive on the British army.
Soldier's Great War cartoons on display at Treasure House
A collection of WW1 cartoons and drawings by Lieutenant Edward Moore Robson, who was granted the Military Cross for his bravery during the Battle of the Somme in 1916, have gone on show at the East Riding Treasure House in Beverley. Robson drew the pictures during the time he spent with the 5th Battalion Alexandra, Princess of Wales' Own (Yorkshire Regiment), aka the Green Howards, 1915-1918. Collections officer Sam Bartle said; "These cartoons are of extremely good quality and would not look out of place in a comic book. ...it shows that soldiers were still able to keep their spirits up, despite the awful situation they were in."
First World War in colour pictures
During World War I only the French photograph masters used the Lumiere brother`s autochrome technique offering a rare "painted view" of the life during the First World War. The French army is the primary source of these photographs from the war we are used to perceiving in "black and white".
Never before seen colour photographs of the battle of Passchendaele
Never seen before, these photographs, hand-touched in colour to bring to life the nightmare of Passchendaele, were released in book "Passchendaele 1917: The Story Of The Fallen" by Frank Bostyn and Jan Van Der Fraeden to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the battle that, between July and November 1917, claimed 2,121 lives a day and in total some quarter of a million Allied soldiers. What was once pretty countryside around the village that gave the battlefield its name was reduced to an infernal swamp where the ground oozed with mustard gas that blistered the skin and made the lungs bleed.
Foto: Modernity in Central Europe, 1918-1945 - Vintage glory
People who love photography know that Germans, Czechs and Hungarians took some of the greatest pictures of the 1920s and 1930s. Henri Cartier-Bresson was developing his "decisive moment" brand of candid photography in France, Central Europe was abuzz with talents who opened up unexplored territories of photographic expression. The works of several dozen photographers from between the world wars are gathered in the National Gallery's exhibition, "Foto: Modernity in Central Europe, 1918-1945," which includes more than 150 prints, photomontages and reproductions.
146 Photos from the First World War Eastern Front
Private and military archive fotos of a German officer during World War 1. A lot of them unpublished yet. Some background information from Cambridge Catalogue, about one of the few books on the Eastern Front: 'War Land on the Eastern Front' is a study of a hidden legacy of WWI: the experience of German soldiers on the Eastern front and the long-term effects of their encounter with Eastern Europe.
In pictures: 'Elephant stable' rare World War I bomber
In pictures - A rare World War One bomber that was discovered in a maharaja's elephant stable in India has been restored on behalf of the UK's Imperial War Museum. The remains of the de Havilland DH9, were discovered near the Palace of Bikaner in the state of Rajasthan. Much of the plane, built in 1918 and the first British plane to contain bombs in its fuselage, had been devoured by termites and most of its fabric was missing. Because no original drawings existed, restoring it was a lengthy task.
War treasures uncovered - Australia's earliest official war artists (Article no longer available from the original source)
The Australian War Memorial has an exhibition of works by one of Australia's earliest official war artists George Lambert. The 80 paintings on display, chosen from the memorial's 32,000-piece collection, have rarely been seen by the public and never as part of a single exhibition. During World War I, 16 Australian artists were appointed to travel to the battlefields where their countrymen fought. However, Lambert was the only artist sent to Palestine to cover that campaign. He was also the only official war artist at Gallipoli in 1919: the war had made earlier access impossible.
In pictures: Camouflage exhibition - See also the related story
A major London exhibition on the history of military camouflage: London's Imperial War Museum is paying tribute to the camofleurs and their successors around the world with the largest-ever such exhibition. Back in Napoleonic times, high-visibility uniforms were the battle order of the day. "It was basically a way of identifying soldiers but it was also about the camaraderie that comes from wearing the same kit." Military camouflage really started in the middle of the 19th Century with the introduction of khaki, but what we think of camouflage now evolved in World War I to counter the new menaces of aircraft and submarines.
Photographer races the clock to document remaining WWI Vets
Born in 1900 World War 1 veteran John Babcock will be 107 in July and is the only surviving WWI combat veteran. Photographer David DeJonge hopes to photograph him this Thursday. In Dec he began strategizing a permanent and lasting documentary of the remaining 12 WWI veterans left in the United States of America. By the time he secured funding, four had died. "It is crushing to photograph a veteran from World War I only to have him pass on two weeks later." Two of the veterans that he has photographed have died within days of his sessions.
World War One Sketchbook from 1917-1918 trenches
The images presented on this site are from a set of two World War 1 sketchbooks archived in the University of Victoria's Special Collections Library. They contain 130 water-colour and pen and ink images which were produced by a British soldier based in France and Belgium 1917-1918. Artist was a member of the Royal Horse and Royal Field Artillery (the regimental crest and motto appear at the top of the page) and he was based in France and Belgium (around Ypres and Menin) between 1917-1918.
Digitised images and online record to reveal life in the trenches
Descendants of First World War soldiers will soon be able to find out about their relatives' physical appearance, wounds, battles, promotions and medals. Ancestry Website is working with the National Archives so that war documents containing digitised images and records of 2.5 million men who served in the war can be accessed on their site. The documents stored in 44,000 boxes and have been transferred to microfilm over the past five years.
Lost WW1 photographs expose truth of Great War
A treasure trove of photographs from the Battle of the Somme has been found in a damp village attic, giving a rare insight into the German view of the First World War. Johann Kugler was attached to an army photography unit, and the 400 gritty pictures from Western Front convey the exhaustion of war. Some of them show German soldiers with flame-throwers or hurling grenades: heroic images snapped to order. A pilot grounded by German fire stands next to his aircraft, unsure what happens next. It was dangerous to set up the cameras during WWI, because the long exposure times meant that the photographer risked being shot.
Soldier's photos show everyday life of war (Article no longer available from the original source)
Photographs from war often focus on death and dying -- young soldiers crying over fallen friends, bodies scattered on the battlefield. André Jeunet, a French soldier, carried in his pocket a Kodak Vest camera and instead focused on everyday life in the military. He snapped 205 black-and-white images, 47 of which are on display for the first time publicly at The Frazier International History Museum. "They give you an idea of what day-to-day life was like for soldiers." Jeunet served on both the Eastern and Western fronts, and the images are a mix of both.
Canadian war treasures fading fast - First World War photos
Inside the National Research Council a chunk of Canada's proud military history is in danger of being lost. The building is home to the National Defence Image Library, which holds 1 million photographs and negatives that chronicle Canada's military operations over the past 90 years. Tremblay manages a small team that is trying to scan these photos onto compact discs. But lack of funding has hampered those efforts and the library loses 1-2% of its collection every year because they are not being stored properly. During the First World War, the 3 branches of the Canadian military each had their own image libraries but they were amalgamated after the WW2.
Forgotten WWI photographer set for revival
When Australia's WWI historian, Charles Bean, employed photographers Frank Hurley and Hubert Wilkins to document on the Western Front, he did the nation a great service. These two men created one of the great photographic war archives. There's just one problem, though. Looking at the vast majority of photos taken during 1917 and 1918, no-one is sure who took which photos. Now, that didn't hurt Frank Hurley - he became famous anyway - but Hubert Wilkins has been almost forgotten. Now a new set of photos taken by Wilkins has been found in the US. They are images that both captivate and horrify, most of them taken at great risk to the photographer.
Doubts raised over who took WWI photographs
Doubt has been cast over who took some of the key photographs of Australian troops fighting in the trenches in WWI. For 90 years Frank Hurley has been credited as being the man who took the images of the Anzacs living and fighting on the Western Front. But the discovery of a private collection of work by Australia's other official war photographer, Hubert Wilkins, cast doubt on who took which photos. Wilkins' biographer Simon Nasht said many of Wilkins' achievements, which include two Military Crosses, had been ignored and it was possible that many of the war photos were incorrectly credited to Hurley.
Vintage Photographs - Aviation
archive photographs taken during, before and after the war. Specifically this sub-section contains photos of aircraft and aviators. -- Aeroplane in the Balkans watched by a group of Serbians. -- Painting the Iron Cross on an aeroplane.