1. Page 27 of 105

    This is another one of my favorite pages. Jammed full of good stuff, most of the images here appear in full spreads in the print edition of Walter Koessler 1914-1918.

    Included in this set:

    • Maschinengewehr 08 machine gun
    • Karabingranate M1914 rifle grenades
    • The coolest dudes, hanging out in a machine gun hold
    • A pressurizer mask for high-altitude flying

    Here’s a short reminder that if you buy the print book and email me at deanputney@gmail.com, I will send you the high-resolution scans for all the photos in the album.

  2. Page 26 of 105

    Building something. There’s a lot of concrete mixing and string winding going on here. Walter labeled the back of one of these photos as “Frapelle 1915”, so it must be near Frapelle, France.

    Today is the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I. I’m going to try to be more regular with the blog here, please harass me on Twitter if I start to fall behind!

  3. Postcards from the Trenches is a Kickstarter to highlight the drawn and painted postcards from soldiers in WWI as an exhibit in Houston, Texas. The exhibit centers around 80 postcards by a single soldier to his love Irma and will also contain a collection of drawings by other artists.

    Check out the Kickstarter, it’s in its last few hours!

  4. Pages 24 and 25

    Walter’s dog gets a two page spread. There’s an old family story that at one point Walter’s group was sent on a train somewhere and they were unable to take the dog with them. They said goodbye to the dog and left it at the train station. Sometime after they set up camp- as much as a hundred miles away -the dog reappeared, paws bloody from running on its journey.

    This spread shows how much they loved this dog. It’s easy to forget the process involved with taking and printing these photos because Walter took so many of them, but here’s a couple dozen devoted just to the dog. The soldiers loved playing with him too, and he appears several times throughout the album. I love the shot with the captain’s hat and someone shaking his paw.

  5. Page 23 of 105

    More babies and family on leave. This house in the bottom right appears several times throughout the album. Pretty interesting to see people doing their washing in the stream.

  6. Page 22 of 105

    Walter and company continue their leave in Mulhouse. Here they serenade a woman outside her window, play with the local children and catch up with family members.

  7. Page 21 of 105

    The higher-ups head out from Mulhouse, and leave continues. That car and its driver are pretty great. This guy with the mustache gets pranked by a friend, who pretends to choke him.

  8. Page 20 of 105

    High-ranking officials visit Walter’s regiment while they are on leave. They’ve got thick, handsome coats and shiny boots. You can see the special attention they’ve put for the visit: laying out a table cloth for lunch and setting up big lawn chairs.

  9. Page 19 of 105

    Walter and the gang: Reading mail, hanging out with some dogs, wearing cool capes and reading the newspaper in the woods.

    From Walter Koessler 1914-1918: The personal photo journal of a German officer in World War I

  10. Page 18 of 105

    Barbed wire tangles (Walter calls them “jumbles” in his report), keeping a lookout in the trenches, working on artillery and mending clothes.

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