The digital collection Deutsche Beuteakten zum Ersten Weltkrieg [Looted German records concerning the First World War] is a project of the Central Archive of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation (TsAMO RF). The documents in this collection, divided over 475 units with some 36,000 pages (Bestand 500, Findbuch 12519), stem from several German military authorities, in particular the Generalstab and the Obere Heeresleitung, and from a number of ministries. Among the documents are unit diaries (Kriegstagebuch) and other front reports (Gefechtsberichten), diplomatic documents (nrs. 321-324 deal with the Russo-Japanese war of 1904/05), some 150 maps, some 80 personal dossiers, and a wide variety of other documents, almost all dating from the period 1910-1919. You can search using the free text search or the index search for labels such as number, year, page, and language. This digital collection can be viewed in Russian, German and English.
The digital collection British First World War Trench Maps, 1915-1918 is a project of the National Library of Scotland (NLS), Edinburgh, at their special subdomain for digitized historical maps. Although the NLS alerts to the incompleteness of their collection this digital collection with 21 maps at 1:5,000, 88 maps at 1:10,000, 198 maps at 1:20,000, and 1 map at 1:40,000 scale, is most interesting. The maps come mainly from the series GSGS 2742 (1:20,000) and GSGS 3062 (1:10,000) and document trenches in Belgium, in particular in Flanders, and in France between 1915 and 1918. The website provides background information about the maps which were mainly created by the Ordnance Survey. After choosing the category “Belgium / France, Trench Maps” from a drop down list at the NLS maps search interface (Find a place) you can select a map from the sections indicated on a zoomable map of Belgium and France.
The website Operacja Lodzka 1914 is a project of the Polish town Lodz to bring together resources showing the history of Lodz during the autumn of 1914 and the battles (the “Great Battle”) fought between the German and Russian armies around Lodz. In the Galeria you will find in particular photographs of soldiers from Lodz. The section Mapy of the main gallery contains some twenty maps of the fronts in Poland. The E-Muzeum is the general gallery of the project with images organized by several themes, The Kalendarium offers an overview of activities commemorating the events of 1914 since 2004.
The website can be viewed in Polish, German, Russian, English and French. You can choose a language by clicking on the flags in the header.
The digital collection World War I Maps has been created by the State Archives of North Carolina in Raleigh, NC. In this collection you can find some 530 maps mainly showing parts of France and Belgium. You can search these maps using the simple search with a free text field, browse the collection, or use the advanced search mode where you can choose fields from a drop down list and add search fields at will. Within the North Carolina Digital Collections you might also use materials from the World War I Collection with some 800 items (500 posters, 260 photographs). The photographs were taken by the U.S. Army Signal Corps.
More photographs taken by members of the US Army Signal Corps during the First World War can be found in the digital collection of US Army Signal Corps WW1 Photographs created by the US Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle, Pennsylvania; see its description.
The digital collection Bildbestand der Deutschen Kolonialgesellschaft (DKG) [Image collection of the German Colonial Society] has been created at the Universitätsbibliothek Frankfurt am Main. The DKG existed from 1887 to 1936. The 50,000 images in this collection have been made in several countries, mainly in Africa (Togo, Cameroun, Namibia, Burundi, Tanzania and Rwanda), China, Papua-Guinea (Irian Barat) and several islands in the Pacific Ocean (Marshall Islands, Carolines, Nauru, Mariana Islands and West-Samoa). You can search the images (Recherche im Bildarchiv) for creators, subjects, regions, persons, tribes and nations, and free text. You can turn on a search mode in English. The Erweiterte Suche allows you to create your own combinations of search fields.
On the website of the DKG image collection you can also read a digital version of the Deutsches Kolonial-Lexikon, Heinrich Schnee (ed.) (3 vol., Leipzig 1920). This reference work has many maps and illustrations. At the website of the UB Frankfurt am Main you can read background information about the DKG collection, and also download a PDF (125 MB) of a study about Namibia by Wilhelm R. Schmidt, Deutsch-Südwest-Afrika : Fotos aus der Kolonialzeit 1884 – 1918 (Frankfurt am Main 2001). Among the e-docs of this library you can browse also some 250 digitized books from the collection of the Kolonialbibliothek; a number of them was published before or during the First World War. The UB Frankfurt am Main hosts also ILISS Africa, the Internet Library Sub-Saharan Africa.
The digital collection Geschichtsschulbücher des Kaiserreichs [History school books of the German Empire] is a section of GEI-Digital: Die digitale Schulbuch-Bibliothek, a project of the Georg-Eckert-Institut für internationale Schulbuchforschung in Braunschweig. In this digital collection you will find nearly 2,200 digitized German history books for use in school from the period 1871 until 1918. There is a similar digital collection with nearly 900 geography books from the same period. In the section with 47 history atlases (Geschichtsatlanten) you can consult some works created during the First World War, as is the case with the other digital collections. You can search the digital library for authors and titles, or use an advanced search mode which allow you even to search within the texts of books. The digital collections can only be viewed in German. The website of the Georg-Eckert-Institut can be viewed in German and English.
The website of the Campaign Atlas to the Great War has been created by the History Department of the United States Military Academy West Point. The website presents some fifty maps of the various fronts in Europe and the Middle East. There are no maps concerning military campaigns in Africa. Some twenty-five maps can be downloaded as PDF’s. A chart explains the use of symbols on the maps. This website can only be viewed in English.
The digital collection World War I Maps & Aerial Photography is an initiative of the McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario. The collection contains some 400 maps of the fronts in France and Belgium, most of them made by the British Ordnance Survey, including trench maps. The scales of most maps are 1:10,000, 1:20,000 and 1:40,000. In a second part of this section, Other theatres of war, you can find maps for Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Russia. The second section of the digital collection is formed by some 500 aerial photographs, most of them taken in 1917 and 1918 by the Royal Air Force. In the section References & Links you will find some titles of relevant literature and some links to other websites with maps concerning the First World War. A number of case studies help using the maps and photographs.
The Polar Bear Expedition Digital Collections consist of materials pertaining to the European expedition of American troops in the aftermath of the First World War to help the Russian army against Germany. The collections have been digitized by the Bentley Historical Library of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. The digital collections can be searched using either the free text search or an advanced search mode. You can also browse the collection. The accompanying guide brings you to finding aids, lists of diaries, maps and photographs, and you can browse items by collection, personal name, geographic name, military unit, media type and subject.
The virtual exhibition Bandō-Sammlung has been created in 2005 by the Deutsches Institut für Japan-Studien in Tokyo. After the fall of the Chinese town Tsingtau in 1914 some 5,000 Germans were taken to the camp Bandō as prisoners of war. The collection came to the DIJ in 1998 and documents their life and behaviour between 1914 and 1920. Materials on other camps with German prisoners of war in Japan and China were added in 2004 and 2005 to the original collection. The prisoners at Bandō had their own camp journal, Die Baracke. The collection contains a great variety of materials, such as maps, postcards, photographs, books, maps, sport and concert programs. An index helps you to search for persons, for locations of camps, keywords and groups of keywords. The website can be viewed in German and Japanese.