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.
The digital collection Discours et témoignages de la Première Guerre Mondiale [Speeches and witness accounts of the First World War] has been created by the Bibliothèque nationale de France as a part of Gallica, its digital portal. This small collection of sound recordings contains eleven speeches by René Viviani, Paul Deschanel, Raymond Poincaré and two other politicians, a witness account by a cardinal of the fire destroying Reims Cathedral in 1914, and two speeches held by a French colonel. A number of speeches is accompanied by images and parliamentary records. The collection can only be viewed in French.
The digital collection Chansons et musique de la Première Guerre Mondiale [Songs and music of the First World War] has been created by the Bibliothèque nationale de France as a part of Gallica, its digital portal. The recordings of songs, sometimes accompanied by illustrations, are presented in seven categories, starting with songs written between 1871 and 1914 in the aftermath of the Franco-Prussian war with pleas for a revanche, combat songs, patriotic hymns, soldiers’ songs about the life at the front, songs from the home front about daily life, a selection of English songs, and songs about the armistice. Interestingly you can often listen to different versions of a particular song. You can also browse the entire set of collections. However, there is no search possibility. As for now the collection can only be viewed using an interface in French.
The virtual exhibition The Virtual Gramophone: First World War Era has been created by Library and Archives Canada at the portal Collections Canada as a part of the section The Virtual Gramophone concerning the history of music in Canada. The portal gives an overview of Canada’s musical history. The section about the First World War has four focuses:
The section with popular songs gives lists of song arranged in chronological order by year. You can listen to a number of sound recordings of them. The section on songs of the First World War has songs arranged by a number of subjects. The section on sheet music is at present missing from the site. There are also biographies of musicians, and the reference list contains a succinct bibliography about First World War music. This virtual exhibition can be viewed in English and French.
At Sheet Music from Canada’s Past, another section of the portal Collections Canada, you can search for items created during the First World War era (select 1914-1920). Searching for the subject World War 1914-1918 brings you to nearly 200 items.
The virtual exhibition Der Erste Weltkrieg und das Ende der Habsburgermonarchie [The First World War and the end of the Habsburg monarchy] has been created by Schloss Schönbrunn in Vienna. You can conduct a general search using the free text search field, click the map for information about a particular part of the Habsburg Empire, look at a particular year of the First World War and its aftermath, or choose from the many themes covering a wide variety of subjects. The digitized items featured in this exhibition come from the holdings of several institutions in Vienna and elsewhere. The exhibition can be viewed in German and English.
The digital portal Portal des Bundesarchivs zum Ersten Weltkrieg has been created by the Bundesarchiv, the German national archives in Koblenz. The portal offers access to digitized inventories and archival records on a wide range of themes. You can browse galleries about special themes, such as the reaction of Germany to the assassination in Sarajevo in 1914 or the German presence in China (Tsingtao). You can look at digitized photographs, including panoramic images (Panoramabilder), and movies. Searching in online archival inventories (online finding aids) is possible using the Invenio system. This system presents also the digitized items. Some 700,000 pages have been digitized. The portal helps also genealogical research (Ahnensuche). Among the rarities are four sound recordings (Tonaufnahmen). The portal is only accessible in German.
The virtual exhibition David Lloyd George has been created in 1995 by the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth. The virtual exhibition shows the career of Lloyd George (1863-1945) from its beginnings in Wales to his political life in England crowned with his role as Prime Minister (1916-1922). He led the United Kingdom through three years of the First World War after he took over power from Herbert Asquith. As Chancellor of the Exchequer (1908-1915) his role in transforming society had been certainly not less important. The exhibition shows photographs, some films and a sound recording made in the thirties of a speech originally held in 1918. The exhibition can be viewed in English and Welsh.
The National Library of Wales (NLW) has in its holdings several series of papers documenting the political career of David Lloyd George. His diary from 1886 (NLW, William George Papers 6) has been digitized, as are his more than three thousand letters to his brother William George (NLW , MSS 20403-42). The National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales has digitized in a special gallery numerous films kept at the NLW featuring David Lloyd George . Most of these films were made after the First World War.
The digital portal Cymru 1914: The Welsh experience of the First World War is a gateway to digitized collections in the holdings of archives and libraries in Wales. The portal has been created by JISC, the National Library of Wales and other cultural institutions in Wales. On this portal you can access digitized archival records, photographs, manuscripts, newspapers and sound recordings. You can search for items with a free text search field. You can limit the results to particular types of resources or choose items from a particular institution. You can also browse the various collections for a particular type of resource. The portal can be viewed in English and Welsh.
Welsh activities concerning the centenary of the First World War can be conveniently found at the portal site Wales Remembers.
The portal La Grande Guerra is a project started by Alessandro Gualtieri. The website aims at bringing together information about Italy and the First World War. There are main sections with a chronology of events, a section on technology, a section on remembrance (influence on literature, memorials, museums, etc.), a section with multimedia resources, including, films and audio recordings, and finally a section on further resources, including an extensive page with links to Italian websites on the First World War. The website can be viewed in Italian and English.
The digital collection British Library: Early spoken word recordings is part of the Sounds portal of the British Library in London. The section with early speech recordings belongs to the sound recordings within the oral history collection. English historians have developed a vigorous tradition in collecting and recording stories told by both ordinary people and people with official functions. The collection contains some 600 recordings from 1890 until the sixties. Among the small number of recordings from the First World War is a speech by Herbert Asquith. Current information about the Sounds portal can be found at the sounds and vision blog of the British Library.