Battle of Castle Itter, 1945, one of the strangest WW2 battles

battle of castle itter

The Battle of Castle Itter is one of those “hidden gem” stories from World War Two. Quite remarkable, but not very well known. It is the only known battle from WWII in which Germans and Americans fought on the same side. In the image we can see damage to the …

US troops enter the razed French town of Saint-Lo, July 1944

us troops saint-lo france ww2

US soldiers enter the ruined French town of Saint-Lo in July 1944, six weeks after D-Day. 95% of the city was destroyed by American bombardments as the Allies retook it from Germany on July 18th 1944. Due to the colossal damage it suffered, Saint-Lo was subsequently nicknamed “The Capital of …

Marina Ginesta, communist reporter, overseeing Barcelona in 1936

marina ginesta

The famous photograph took by Juan Guzmán shows a 17 year old Marina Ginesta, a French born reporter, translator and communist militant, at the top of Hotel Colon in Barcelona. The image is dated July 21st, 1936, right at the start of the Spanish Civil War. Ginesta is carrying a …

Love during World War Two #2

love world war two 2

1) Sweethearts embracing and kissing at the Conneticut train station in 1945, as an older couple smiles in the background. 2) French girl holding an American G.I., maybe her boyfriend, on a date sometime during the 1940s. Image might be taken somewhere around Cote d’azur (note the palm trees). 3) …

German policemen smoking with a French prisoner, 1940

nazi black world war two

German policemen (Ordnungspolizei) sharing a smoke with a French colonial prisoner. Vichy, 1940. The Ordnungspolizei were the uniformed police force of Germany between 1936 and 1945. Book suggestion⤵️ 📖 The Volksdeutschen in the Wehrmacht, Waffen-SS, Ordnungspolizei in World War II (Rolf Michaelis, 2012)

Sandbags protecting Notre Dame Cathedral facade, 1940

notre dame cathedral ww2

Sandbags are cleared off the facade of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, as Germany occupied the city unopposed on June 14th 1940. The sandbags were used by Parisians to protect Notre Dame against bombardments. Paris and its invaluable cultural and architectural heritage was saved twice from destruction during World War …

Drancy WW2 camp with a French gendarme on guard

drancy ww2 camp

Drancy internment camp in the suburbs of Paris, France, in August 1941. In the image we see the inner courtyard and the horse shoe shape of the housing blocks. The camp was under the command of Adolf Eichmann’s assistant, Alois Brunner. Drancy was operational between 20 August 1941 and 17 …

A Char B1 Bis tank disabled in 1940, Northern France

char b1 tank ww2

German Wehrmacht soldier sitting on top of a disabled Char B1 bis tank in Northern France, 1940. The Char B1 was a French medium tank which was used as a break-through vehicle and as a battle tank. The B1 entered service in 1936. In 1937, a newer version, the Char …

Then and Now: Citadel of Belford, France, Georges Blind mock execution spot

then and now georges blind execution belfort citadel

1944 vs. modern day. Fourth moat of the Belfort Citadel, France, the spot where Georges Blind, a member of the French resistance, smiled as he faced a German firing squad. However, Blind was not shot. The photograph was taken during a mock execution, set up to force Blind to give …

French resistance member Georges Blind faces German firing squad in 1944

georges blind mock execution world war II

Georges Blind, a member of the French resistance, smiling as he faces a German firing squad in 1944. However, Blind was not executed. The photograph was taken during a mock execution, set up to force Blind to give up information (which by all accounts he did not). Blind entered the …