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Christmas on the front, Vaucelles, France, 1916. A watercolor of the village gate. A separate photograph shows two German soldiers posing before the gate.
Text:
Weihnachten im Felde, Vaucelles 1916.
Christmas at the front, Vaucelles, 1916.
Reverse:
Penciled note: 'Entrance gate of the village Vaucelles December 18, 1916 – France-' [NOTE: The reverse of the postcard may end with "Frankreich", but Vaucelles, France is near Caen, on the coast. Vaucelles, Belgium is southwest of Dinant on the French border. The blue would presumably be the Meuse in that case.] (translation courtesy Thomas Faust, ebay's Urfaust.

Christmas on the front, Vaucelles, France, 1916. A watercolor of the village gate. A separate photograph shows two German soldiers posing before the gate.

Image text: Weihnachten im Felde, Vaucelles 1916.

Christmas at the front, Vaucelles, 1916.

Reverse:

Penciled note: 'Entrance gate of the village Vaucelles December 18, 1916 – France-' [NOTE: The reverse of the postcard may end with "Frankreich", but Vaucelles, France is near Caen, on the coast. Vaucelles, Belgium is southwest of Dinant on the French border. The blue would presumably be the Meuse in that case.] (translation courtesy Thomas Faust, ebay's Urfaust.

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A Swiss postcard of 'The European War' in 1914. The Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary face enemies to the east, west, and south. Germany is fighting the war it tried to avoid, battling Russia to the east and France to the west. Germany had also hoped to avoid fighting England which came to the aid of neutral (and prostrate) Belgium, and straddles the Channel. Austria-Hungary also fights on two fronts, against Russia to the east and Serbia and Montenegro to the south. Italy, the third member of the Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, declared neutrality, and looks on. Other neutral nations include Spain, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Romania, Bulgaria, and Albania. Japan enters from the east to battle Germany. The German Fleet stays close to port in the North and Baltic Seas while a German Zeppelin targets England. The Austro-Hungarian Fleet keeps watch in the Adriatic. Turkey is not represented, and entered the war at the end of October, 1914; Italy in late May, 1915.
Text:
Der Europäische Krieg
The European War
Reverse:
Kriegskarte No. 61. Verlag K. Essig, Basel
Kunstanstalt (Art Institute) Frobenius A.G. Basel

A Swiss postcard of 'The European War' in 1914. The Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary face enemies to the east, west, and south. Germany is fighting the war it tried to avoid, battling Russia to the east and France to the west. Germany had also hoped to avoid fighting England which came to the aid of neutral (and prostrate) Belgium, and straddles the Channel. Austria-Hungary also fights on two fronts, against Russia to the east and Serbia and Montenegro to the south. Italy, the third member of the Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, declared neutrality, and looks on. Other neutral nations include Spain, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Romania, Bulgaria, and Albania. Japan enters from the east to battle Germany. The German Fleet stays close to port in the North and Baltic Seas while a German Zeppelin targets England. The Austro-Hungarian Fleet keeps watch in the Adriatic. Turkey is not represented, and entered the war at the end of October, 1914; Italy in late May, 1915.

Image text: Der Europäische Krieg

The European War

Reverse:

Kriegskarte No. 61. Verlag K. Essig, Basel

Kunstanstalt (Art Institute) Frobenius A.G. Basel

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German postcard map of the Romanian theater of war, with map labels in Bulgarian added in red. From north to south the labels are Russia, the Austro-Hungarian regions of Galicia and Bukovina, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and, along the Black Sea, the Romania region of Dobruja. Romania's primary war aim was the annexation of the Austro-Hungarian region of Transylvania, with its large ethnic Romanian population.
Text:
Vogelschaukarte des rumänischen Kriegschauplatzes.
German map labels:
Vogelschaukarte des rumänischen Kriegschauplatzes.
Rusland
Galizien
Bukowina
Ungarn
Rumania
Bulgaria
Dobrudscha
Bulgarian overprint in red:
на румънския театър на войната
Бърд око на картата на румънския театър на войната.
Лтичи погдедъъ Бърд око на картата на румънския войната театър
Русия
Галисия
Буковина
Унгария
Румъния
България
Добруджа
A 498 E.P. & Co. A.-G. L.

German postcard map of the Romanian theater of war, with map labels in Bulgarian added in red. From north to south the labels are Russia, the Austro-Hungarian regions of Galicia and Bukovina, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and, along the Black Sea, the Romania region of Dobruja. Romania's primary war aim was the annexation of the Austro-Hungarian region of Transylvania, with its large ethnic Romanian population.

Image text: Vogelschaukarte des rumänischen Kriegschauplatzes.



German map labels:

Vogelschaukarte des rumänischen Kriegschauplatzes.

Rusland

Galizien

Bukowina

Ungarn

Rumania

Bulgaria

Dobrudscha



Bulgarian overprint in red:

на румънския театър на войната

Бърд око на картата на румънския театър на войната.

Лтичи погдедъъ Бърд око на картата на румънския войната театър

Русия

Галисия

Буковина

Унгария

Румъния

България

Добруджа

A 498 E.P. & Co. A.-G. L.

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Imperial Russian soldiers on parade in France.
Message and postmark Marseille, April 22, 1916.

Imperial Russian soldiers on parade in France.
Message and postmark Marseille, April 22, 1916.

Image text:

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Photograph of a French aviator downing a German observation balloon near St. Mihiel on September 16, 1918, the last day of the American St. Mihiel Offensive. That same day American airmen Frank Luke and Joe Wehner downed three balloons in the sector.
Text:
French aviator downing a german observer near St Mihiel on the 16th day of september 1918

Photograph of a French aviator downing a German observation balloon near St. Mihiel on September 16, 1918, the last day of the American St. Mihiel Offensive. That same day American airmen Frank Luke and Joe Wehner downed three balloons in the sector.

Image text: French aviator downing a german observer near St Mihiel on the 16th day of september 1918

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Wednesday, September 16, 1914

"The population of Brussels, understanding well its own interests, has generally, since the arrival of the German troops, maintained order and quiet. For this reason, I have not yet forbidden the display of Belgian flags, which is regarded as a provocation by the German troops living in or passing through Brussels. Purely in order to avoid having our troops led to acting on their own initiative, I now call upon houseowners to take down their Belgian flags.

The Military Government, in putting this measure into effect, has not the slightest intention of wounding the susceptibilities and dignity of the citizens. it is intended solely to protect the citizens against harm.

Brussels, September 16, 1914, Baron von Luttwitz, General and Governor"
((1), more)

Thursday, September 16, 1915

"Exertions, privations, very heavy knapsack, neck and shoulder pain from the rifle and long, difficult marches; extremely tired feet and body. Bad roads — either uneven asphalt or deep sand — and always the uneven fields, marching up and down deep furrows. Often in double time, and usually no water or at best stinking water, no bread for days on end. When we do get food, it is little or bad, hardly any meat at all. Nothing but freezing and freezing, and back pains." ((2), more)

Saturday, September 16, 1916

"Under the increasing pressure of the Bulgarians the Rumanians are progressively evacuating the Dobrudja, and every day and night Austrian airmen bomb Bucharest from their base at Rustchuk.

From the moment the Rudeanu agreement was thrown over these misfortunes were easy to foresee. The Rumanian Government is paying dearly for the mistake it made in directing its whole military effort towards Transylvania, allowing itself to be taken in by vague rumours from Sofia and particularly in imagining that the Bulgarians had abandoned the idea of a military revenge for the disaster and humiliation of 1913."
((3), more)

Sunday, September 16, 1917

"Comby looked at his watch, looked down again at the camp. And at precisely 10 A.M. from a hill to the west, there came the flat reports of four spaced shots from the battery of 75s. The battle for La Courtine had begun.

The first artillery shot had been a blank, but the next three were exercise projectiles, nonexplosive metal slugs, 'less deadly than regular field projectiles but dangerous nevertheless,' observed Comby. The three shells landed against a hill flanking the rows of barracks and sent up warning plumes of dirt.

There was a period of silence to let the threat implied by these warning shots sink in upon the rebels. Then from the barracks the watchers heard a strange sound. The rebels were singing 'The Marseillaise'—followed by Chopin's 'Funeral March.'"
((4), more)

Monday, September 16, 1918

"'How would it be if we left the airdrome just in time to get those balloons at dusk, when their observers are taking a last look at our troop movements? Wehner can get one about seven-ten, I'll get another about seven-twenty, and between us we ought to get the third about seven-thirty. Just start burning flares and shooting rockets here on the drome about that time and we'll get back all right. I'll promise you that.'" ((5), more)

Quotation contexts and source information

Wednesday, September 16, 1914

(1) Notice posted by the German Military Government in Brussels, dated September 16, 1914, and recorded by Hugh Gibson, Secretary of the American Legation in Brussels, in his journal entry of the 18th.

A Journal from our Legation in Belgium by Hugh Gibson, page 238, copyright © Copyright, 1917, by Doubleday, Page & Company, publisher: Doubleday, Page & Company, publication date: 1917

Thursday, September 16, 1915

(2) Private Wilhelm Schulin of the German 26th Infantry Division, just north of Brest-Litovsk, Russia, on the German advance in the Gorlice-Tarnow Offensive. German Commander Erich von Falkenhayn had instructed his generals to stop in August and again on September 2. Claiming he misunderstood Falkenhayn's directions, General Erich Ludendorff continued his offensive, at increasing cost. The Germans would capture Vilna on September 18, the last major prize in their advance.

The First World War: Germany and Austria Hungary 1914-1918 by Holger H. Herwig, page 145, copyright © 1997 Holger H. Herwig, publisher: Arnold, publication date: 1997

Saturday, September 16, 1916

(3) Entry from the memoirs of Maurice Paléologue, French Ambassador to Russia, for Saturday, September 16, 1916. A combined German, Bulgarian, and Turkish army under German General August von Mackensen attacked Romania from the south in Dobrudja, a region between the Danube River and the Black Sea. Colonel Rudeanu was the Romanian military attaché in France, and Paléologue had written of his work in July. The agreement he had negotiated with the Allies was that Romania would attack Bulgaria immediately upon entering the war in an attempt to link up with the Entente ally forces on the Salonica Front. Romania instead sent three of its four armies through the passes in the Transylvanian Alps to invade Transylvania, a region of Austria-Hungary with a large ethnic Romanian population. In the Second Balkan War of 1913, Romania had launched a surprise attack on Bulgaria which was already at war with Turkey and its allies in the First Balkan War, Serbia and Greece. Romania's political and military decisions seem hopelessly if not criminally naive. Bucharest and Sofia were and remain the capitals of Romania and Bulgaria respectively.

An Ambassador's Memoirs Vol. III by Maurice Paléologue, page 26, publisher: George H. Doran Company

Sunday, September 16, 1917

(4) Four brigades of Russian soldiers were sent too France in the spring of 1916, two of them immediately being sent to the Salonika Front. The Russian Revolution of March and the French army mutinies of May and June played out in the Russian units on both fronts. On September 16, 1917, the two brigades that remained in France were isolated in La Courtine, 400 kilometers south of Paris, where they had entrenched, refusing to submit to French or Russian authorities. French General Louis Comby led the siege of the camp to compel the Russians' surrender.

Dare Call it Treason by Richard M. Watt, page 273, copyright © 1963 by Richard M. Watt, publisher: Simon and Schuster, publication date: 1963

Monday, September 16, 1918

(5) American Lieutenant Frank Luke to his commanding officer Major Hartney on September 16, 1918. Luke had a short and spectacular career as a pilot, downing four German airplanes and fourteen German observation balloons between August 16 and September 29, 1918 when he was shot down over Murvaux, France after shooting down three balloons. Joe Wehner partnered with Luke, sometimes providing cover from enemy planes while Luke went after a balloon. Frank Luke was the leading American 'balloon buster' of the war, but was surpassed by the Belgian Willy Coppens, with 37 victories, 35 of them balloons. Coppens survived the war.

The Balloon Buster by Norman S. Hall, page 88, copyright © 1928 Liberty Weekly, Inc., renewed, 1956, Lorraine Lester et al., publisher: Bantam Books, publication date: 1966