World War II

Vintage: Everyday Life of Soviet People during World War II

Vintage: Everyday Life of Soviet People during World War II

The Soviet Union suffered greatly in the war, losing around 27 million people. Approximately 2.8 million Soviet POWs died of starvation, mistreatment, or executions in just eight months of 1941–42. During the war, the Soviet Union together with the United States, the United Kingdom and China were considered as the Big Four of Allied powers in World War II and…
Vintage: Refugee Crisis Caused by World War II

Vintage: Refugee Crisis Caused by World War II

During World War II, the Nazis deported between seven and nine million Europeans, mostly to Germany. Within months of Germany’s surrender in May 1945, the Allies repatriated to their home countries more than six million displaced persons (DPs; wartime refugees). Between 1.5 million and two million DPs refused repatriation. Most Jewish survivors, who had survived concentration camps or had been…
The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp by George Rodger

The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp by George Rodger

With the outbreak of the Second World War, Rodger had a strong urge to chronicle the war. His photographs of the Blitz gained him a job as a war correspondent for Life magazine, based in the United States. Rodger covered the war in West Africa extensively and, towards the end of the war, followed the Allies’ liberation of France, Belgium…
Vintage: Christmas during the World War II (1940s)

Vintage: Christmas during the World War II (1940s)

The public were discouraged from giving presents and encouraged to give as much as they could to the war effort. Almost £10 million in war bonds was sold in the week before Christmas. Consumer goods were becoming scarcer as the war wore on but a theme of air-raid-shelter-friendly presents emerged. Flasks and sleeping bags were in demand and even ‘gas…
Vintage: Traffic control in occupied Poland (1940-1941)

Vintage: Traffic control in occupied Poland (1940-1941)

Under the terms of two decrees by Hitler (8 October and 12 October 1939), large areas of western Poland were annexed to Germany. These included all the territories which Germany had lost under the 1919 Treaty of Versailles, such as the Polish Corridor, West Prussia and Upper Silesia, but also a large area of indisputably Polish territory east of these…
Vintage: Daily Life in the Warsaw Ghetto (summer of 1941)

Vintage: Daily Life in the Warsaw Ghetto (summer of 1941)

Average food rations in 1941 for Jews in Warsaw were limited to 184 calories, compared to 699 calories for gentile Poles and 2,613 calories for Germans. Unemployment was a major problem in the ghetto. Illegal workshops were created to manufacture goods to be sold illegally on the outside and raw goods were smuggled in, often by children. Hundreds of four-…
Vintage: Photos of American women in World War II

Vintage: Photos of American women in World War II

During World War II, approximately 400,000 U.S. women served with the armed forces and more than 460 – some sources say the figure is closer to 543 – lost their lives as a result of the war, including 16 from enemy fire. However, the U.S. decided not to use women in combat because public opinion would not tolerate it. Women…
Finland during World War II

Finland during World War II

Finland during World War II encompasses three major conflicts. The first two of these – the defensive Winter War in 1939–1940, and the Continuation War alongside the Axis Powers in 1941–1944 – were waged against the Soviet Union. The third one, the Lapland War in 1944–1945, followed the signing of an armistice agreement with the Allied Powers, which stipulated expulsion…
London in the Blackout (1939)

London in the Blackout (1939)

Even before World War II began, the British Air Ministry had predicted that the United Kingdom would be bombed at night by German air forces. One of the very few precautions the nation could take was the elimination of man-made light. In July 1939 – two months before the declaration of war – the British government distributed Public Information Leaflet…
Ansel Adams Captures Life on a Japanese Internment Camp

Ansel Adams Captures Life on a Japanese Internment Camp

Manzanar (which means ‘apple orchard’ in Spanish), is the site of one of ten camps where over 110,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned during World War II. Located at the foot of the Sierra Nevada in California’s Owens Valley between the towns of Lone Pine to the south and Independence to the north, it is approximately 230 miles (370 km) northeast…
Berlin in Ruins in 1945

Berlin in Ruins in 1945

After the war ends on 8 May 1945, much of Berlin is nothing but rubble: 600,000 apartments have been destroyed, and only 2.8 million of the city’s original population of 4.3 million still live in the city. In accordance with an agreement signed by the Allies, the city is divided into four sectors and administered jointly by the occupying powers,…