The set of thematic research guides for archival research concerning the First World War is part of the Cendari portal for a collective European digital archival infrastructure. The core of the Cendari portal is the creation of a directory of archives in Europe and their collections. A second service is the creation of archival research guides. In this section you can find sixteen guides concerning the First World War. These guides deal for instance with prisoners of war, the importance of diaries and personal narratives, the role of women, religion, coercion in the armies, medicine and workers’ movements. Poland and Russia are among the countries receiving particular attention. There are also nine similar guides for research on medieval history and (religious) culture.
Thematic research guides for archival research – Cendari
The digital project Transcribathon Europeana 1914-1918 is an initiative of the platform Europeana. In this crowdsourcing project the general public is invited to transcribe letters, postcards and diaries or to annotate pictures within the digital collections at Europeana 1914-1918. On this multilingual website some 50,000 items have been prepared for transcribing or annotating. There are tutorials in nine languages. You can start working with items after registration. There is a educational section for using this project in schools. You can choose items from an interactive maps, browse for items in a particular language or focus on a particular topic. Each year a number of transcribathons (transcribing sessions) are held in European cities.
Transcribathon Europeana 1914-1918
The blog Der Erste Weltkrieg in Selbstzeugnissen [The First World War in Eyewitness Accounts] is a project of the Sammlung Frauennachlässe of the Universität Wien (Vienna). The documents are presented at the blog Salon21 of this research platform for women’s history and documents of women with some 400 collections in its holdings. On the blog excerpts from diaries, postcards or complete letters written by women are presented in a day-to-day sequence following the years 1914 to 1918 exactly one hundred years later. Women corresponded with each other, or they wrote to soldiers at the front and vice versa. There are documents by mothers, sisters, school girls and friends.
The Sammlung Frauennachlässe is a member of the network European Diaries Archives and Collections. The institute has created a rich links collection on women history , relevant research institutes and documentary collections with diaries and letters.
Der Erste Weltkrieg in Selbstzeugnissen
The digital collection Crew Lists of the British Merchant Navy – 1915 has been created by the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Volunteers transcribed in a crowdsourcing project 750,000 names in some 39,000 crew lists. Some of the lists are held by the National Archives in Kew, their lists have not been digitized for this website. You can search for crew members (first name, surname, rank, vessel and birth place) and for vessels (vessel name and official number). The lists are formally crew agreements, official contracts. Women, too, served on merchant ships. The lists are also an important resource for family history and economic history. The page About provides background information, and you can benefit from the Frequently Asked Questions, too.
Crew LIsts of the British Merchant Navy – 1915
The digital collection Cultural exchange in a time of global conflict. Colonials, neutrals and belligerents during the First World War: Sourcebook has been created by the team of the international CEBG project. This digital collection aiming at students in higher education offers a selection of sources from various holdings. You can select items for particular themes or choose a source genre, use the free search field or use the advanced search mode.
Cultural exchange in a time of global conflict. Colonials, neutrals and belligerents during the First World War: Sourcebook
The digital collection Les marchés de guerre 14-18 [Markets during the First World War] has been created by the French Ministry of Economic Affairs and its Centre des Archives Économiques et Financières (CAEF) at Savigny-le-Temple. On this website you can chose particular themes concerning French industries and public works (Recherche thematique) or a particular location (Recherche géographique) using an interactive map. A national commission investigated between 1933 and 1940 the workings of markets during the First World War. The section Focus brings you to four dossiers on major firms such as Peugeot and Michelin. The section Sources gives you a chronological overview of French legislation and information about themes such as taxation and war finance. You can also read an essay with background information by Béatrice Touchelay (Université Lille-3). This digital collection can only be viewed in French.
The CAEF has also created a portal site concerning the First World War and the French economy.
Les marchés de guerre 14-18
The digital collection Testaments de guerre de poilus parisiens (1914-1918) [War wills of Parisian soldiers, 1914-1918] is a project of the École nationale des Chartes in Paris, the famous French institution for the training of archivists. This collection offers a selection of wills created by soldiers from Paris during the First World War. The 134 wills edited here are kept at the Archives nationales de France. All wills stem from soldiers who died between 1914 and 1918 with the mention Mort pour la France. The collection is accompanied by an introduction, essays on numerous aspects concerning these wills, and a bibliography. You can search for the names of deceased soldiers and for the location of their death. The collections can only be viewed in French.
The École nationale des Chartes has digitized the commemorative publication L’École des Chartes et la Guerre (1914-1918): Livre d’Or (Paris 1921).
Testaments de guerre de poilus parisiens (1914-1918)
The digital collection WWI Military Portraits is part of the digital image collections of the Milwaukee Public Library. The collection contains 33,000 items (photographs, typewritten volumes, and service records). There are some 6,000 photographs. The items were complied from collections of the American War Mothers Milwaukee County Chapter and the Milwaukee County Council of Defense. You can browse all items, filter the results using the free text search or using the subject filter. In the advanced search mode you can add search fields at will. Some items refer to the Canadian and Polish armies.
WWI Military Portraits
The digital collection La 1ère Guerre vue de Paris has been created by Odile Gaultier Voituriez. The collection gives an edition of 1020 letters exchanged during the First World War between two men in Paris, Étienne Bandy de Nalèche (1865-1947), a former diplomat who became the owner and editor-in-chief of the influential Journal des Débats, and Pierre Lebaudy (1865-1929), an industrial entrepeneur, philantrope and art collector. The original letters are mainly kept at the Archives d’histoire contemporaine, Centre d’histoire of Sciences Po in Paris [Fonds Étienne de Nalèche]. The list of other relevant sources and the extensive bibliography merit attention. The letters are posted in a sequence which gives you a day-to-day idea of this correspondance. You can select letters by month of publication.
La 1ère Guerre vue de Paris
The portal The Battle of Jutland Centenary Initiative has been created to commemorate in 2016 the naval battle of May 31-June 1, 1916 between the British Royal Navy and the German Hochseeflotte off the Danish coast. At its center are a 25 minute animation video showing the actual battle, its background and impact, and the new study by Nick Jellicoe, grandson of the British naval commander admiral Jellicoe. The portal has databases on the ships and their crews. There are maps, teaching materials and sources, and a detailed web directory for the naval history of the First World War. In a crowdsourcing project the public is asked to help decipher and translate fragile German books dealing with the Battle of Jutland printed with the Fraktur type. The website can only be viewed in English.
The Battle of Jutland Centenary Initiative