Most of the photos in this section were taken by soldiers from our town of Ettlingen. Sometimes they were printed on the cheap "Feldpostkarten" (the postcards for army letters) and they have kept remarkably well. The soldiers sent them home to their friends and families to try and give them an impression of their everyday life.

Floodlight at Lake Narach, Belarus, 1916. Photo by Dr. Theodor Kiefer of Ettlingen, doctor at the Eastern Front.

The two images below are not actual photos taken by soldiers, so don't strictly belong in this section, but interesting nonetheless. For wounded German soldiers, this was the form sent from the lazaretts at the front to those back home, explaining why the soldier was currently a patient in the lazarett in one or two words. It looks as if this particular one came from Hungary. The respective affliction was underlined and it seems you had to guess the rest! Underlined where applicable: Slight injuries, Wounded, Seriously wounded, Sick, Very Sick.


This photo was taken on June 25, 1915. It shows a trench in Lipniki, Russian Poland. The soldiers often had very little sleep and took it when and how they could.

Winter 1917 at the Eastern Front

This photo was taken on February 9, 1916. Clearly it was very cold. The caption on the back of the photo reads "When will we see each other again in Ettlingen?"

In this photo, the soldiers are inside their shelter. The photo was taken by Herrmann Bauer of Ettlingen on February 24, 1915 and has notations in pencil of the names of the others in the photo. One or two of the other soldiers came from Rüppurr, the suburb of Karlsruhe nearest to Ettlingen.

This photo is from 1916 and is captioned "Awards ceremony for best garden competition 1916". We think this might be the garden competition that was held at the lazarett in Ettlingen. Several nurses and hospital staff are also visible in the photo.

In the wireless room, 1916

This photo was not taken by a soldier from Ettlingen but I have included it as it is historically important and also shows how people had to cope during war time and occupation. It shows the town of Longwy-Bas in France, with occupying German troops at the left and the townspeople in the center and at the right of the photo. The building of the Société Générale has been partially destroyed by a hand grenade.

The Battle of Longwy took place on August 22-23, 1914 and the fort of Longwy was taken by German troops. Longwy thus became the first French fortress to be taken by the Germans in the First World War. Much of the town was destroyed. According to the 1914 German "September Program", Longwy was supposed to become annexed to the German Empire because of its rich ore mining regions.

This photo was sent by Tor Kiefer of Ettlingen (our young doctor at the front) and shows all the staff of the military hospital.

Reading the newspaper in Lipniki, Russian Poland in June 1915. At the back and to the right we can see a cross - probably a grave.


Unknown said...

Love the site. A companion and I are working on a day calendar that commemorates the First World War and we are going to need photos. Can you give us an email or postal address to write to concerning the usage of some of these photos?

Best wishes,
G. Winkler

Ettlingen WW1 said...

Thanks for your comments! Sure, please contact me at either or at
(the first address is preferred).