Colloquium The Great War from below

The Great War from below: between individual life courses and collective experiences. New sources, new perspectives.
Colloquium The Great War from below
Within the framework of the research project The Great War from Below  the National Archives organizes an international colloquium on 3 March 2015 entitled The Great War from Below: between individual life courses and collective experiences. New sources, new perspectives.

The project studies the impact of the First World War on Belgian society and particular social groups via a sources analysis shedding light on personal experiences.

The colloquium pursues four goals:

  1. Identifying new research instruments.
  2. Analysing initiatives already taken by different actors in the field of social history of the First World War.
  3. Raising awareness about sources that were only scarcely used so far.
  4. Presenting current research (methods - aims).

Registration: Before 25 February 2015 via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Date: March 3rd 2015

Place: National Archives of Belgium (Rue de Ruysbroeck 8-10 at B-1000 Brussels)

Tariffs: Free admission

Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and 0032.2.513.76.80

WW1: voices from the BBC Archives

1st world war 1914 600 A unique collection of historic recordings covering events from the last days of peace to the Christmas truce, 1914.

At midnight on 4 August, Britain had declared war on Germany. The pacifist Bertrand Russell was shocked by the pro-war euphoria on the streets, yet young men enlisted willingly because "it would all be over by Christmas". It was not. Instead the opposing armies had become entrenched. It was the beginning of a long and bitter stalemate.

In this new audio compilation, troops of the British Expeditionary Force vividly recall the exhausting retreat from Mons, the success at the Marne, and the first battle of Ypres, where the Territorials arrived in bright red London buses. For reconnaissance pilots, the battlefield was defined by blazing villages, and fields alive with German troops.

Among the items which powerfully capture the mood of the time are an eyewitness account of the Kaiser's reaction to the news from Sarajevo on 28 June; Margot Asquith, wife of the Prime Minister, remembering their despair at the inevitability of war; and the poignant reminiscences of civilians and soldiers.

Information on BBC Shop

Exhibition: Heavy traffic, railway traffic and other forms of transport in Poperinge 1914-1918

Railway station of Poperinge 1914-1918Heavy traffic, railway traffic and other forms of transport in Poperinge 1914-1918

The railway station of Poperinge was a logistic turntable and central turning point for the medical evacuation towards France. Not only soldiers and freight were moved to and from the frontline through railway line L. 69 Poperinge - Hazebrouck. Wounded and sick soldiers as well as refugees passed through the city.

The dynamic diorama - staged in the Gasthuiskapel - will fascinate all ages. It'll display several station scenes (scale 1/76). Hikers and cyclists are welcome to discover the outdoor exhibition and come across several World War 1 sites with a story. A multilingual app leads the visitor through the exhibition and on the road there are images of the past to discover. Old railway maps will reveal an ingenious network of routes. The launch of the app is linked to the editing of an authentic road map.

Where: Gasthuiskapel, Gasthuisstraat 1A in B8970 Poperinge (Belgium)

When: from september the 19th 2014 till september the 5th 2015

          from september the 19th till november the 16th 2014: every day

          from november the 17th 2014 till february the 15th 2015: saturday and sunday

          from february the 16th till september the 5th 2015: every day

          Closed on monday

Price:   Adults: 3,00 €

          Children (<= 12 years): 1,00 €

          Family ticket: 5,00 €

          Groupes: 2,00 €

           Rent iPad for the visit of the open air exhibition: 5,00 €

Contact: 0032. (0)



Common cause: Commonwealth Scots and the Great War

scottich1914This exhibition in the National Museum of Scotland will explore the stories of the Scottish diaspora and the war experiences of the nations of the Commonwealth during the First World War. In 1914, as the world prepared for war, thousands of men enlisted in Scotland. But thousands more Scots and those of Scottish descent joined up across the world, and the exhibition will show how they emphasised, adapted or in some cases downplayed their Scottish identities within the context of the armed forces of their home countries.

The exhibition will be built around key objects borrowed from the UK and international partners in Canada, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, some of the main destination countries of the Scottish diaspora. Through contemporaneous newsreel and photography and the words of participants, the exhibition will explore how the war was experienced and commemorated in different parts of the British Empire, and how military service was related to other expressions of Scottish identity and culture such as Caledonian societies, Presbyterianism and piping.

Artefacts from the collections of National Museums Scotland associated with individual war experiences will reinforce the main themes of migration, dual identity and loss, and extend the geographical scope of the exhibition.

11 July – 12 October 2014

National Museum of Scotland

New: Les civils en guerre


Eric Alary a publié un ouvrage sur les civils durant la Première Guerre mondiale, comblant ainsi un vide historiographique important.

Se penchant principalement sur le cas de la France, l'auteur raconte les séparations, les évacuations, les exodes, les deuils infinis, la place nouvelle de millions de femmes et d'enfants dans une société recomposée, les privations matérielles et alimentaires, les grèves, les bombardements aériens, la lente démobilisation des hommes entre 1918 et 1920, sans oublier le retour difficile des blessés et des mutilés dans leurs foyers et les terribles ravages de la grippe espagnole.

La Grande Guerre des Civils (1914-1918) aux Editions Perrin.



Récolte de témoignages

keym002-57En marge du projet d'exposition "Bruxelles à l'heure allemande", en août 2014, la Ville de Bruxelles met les concitoyens à contribution.

Appel est fait auprès des Bruxellois et Bruxelloises pour déposer en prêt ou faire don de leurs documents ou d'objets relatifs à la Première Guerre mondiale.

Les Archives proposent aussi de scanner des documents originaux que des particuliers souhaiteraient conserver.

Contact : Gwenaël Guegan, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. tél. 02 279 53 04

Expo: A l'heure allemande

keym-98-001En août 2014, le Musée de la Ville inaugurera une exposition consacrée à "Bruxelles à l'heure allemande".

Cette exposition proposera un vaste panorama sur le thème de la ville en guerre. Le focus sera mis sur Bruxelles comme capitale occupée, mais un regard sera aussi porté vers d'autres villes, notamment en Allemagne. 

A suivre...