Les Ruines Aprés le Passage des Allemands. Guerre 1914-1915

Les Ruines.jpg

Dublin Core


Les Ruines Aprés le Passage des Allemands. Guerre 1914-1915




This is a single image from a collection of postcards depicting the First World War and the horrors that became normal life. The collection is titled La Guerre Européenne 1914-1915: Aprés le Passage Des Allemands – Les Ruines, which translates to European War 1914-1915: After the Passage of the Germans- Ruins. There is a similar collection that was found by an American Expeditionary Forces member. Though this image is not included within his collection, it is without a doubt from a collection of the same photographer or same series of postcard books or just a different series. Every photo in both collections was labeled with the same initials, L.L. In the first collection found by the AEF member, the images are strikingly similar to the image above. In each collection, the photos are all of a city after a bombing. Each collection shows the destruction of what modern technology within war was, most likely to spread around to the mass of people because they had never seen anything like this before. I, at first, thought this image was from France, but after research some different images within the collections the locations is actually in Belgium, most accurately Mechelen, Belgium. This image was most likely presented to the French public because the two countries were closely related during this time in history and was dealing with German invasion. The image is dated 1914-1915. There is not a lot of information provided with in the collection.

Within the image is a bombed out city and a group of soldiers standing in the ruins of the homes that once stood there. But the title of the image also includes the saying "in the back, a church still stands intact." I think that this is an important thing to notice. Because it is so early in the war, many still most likely held onto to their faith and belief that God would protect them. With the photographer using this image, it still shows the religion and God still stand despite the destruction of the life they knew. The soldiers are also an interesting concept in this image. It is very interesting to see all of this destruction around them due to modern technologies in war, but they are still so primitive. They are still using horses and what appears to be a wagon. They are surrounded by modern technology but they are still using old ways. It is a clash of modernism and old way of war.

Here is the link to the other collection from the AEF member mentioned in the first paragraph.




McFarlin Library, Department of Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tulsa. 2933 E.
6th St. Tulsa, Oklahoma 74104-3123






1000-058 #157


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France and Belgium

Still Image Item Type Metadata

Original Format

Post Card