This photograph is from a collection known as the Valois Albums, created during and after World War One. It was taken on 19 October 1916 and shows the construction of a sap, a deep and narrow trench used to undermine enemy positions, in the Belgian sector, at position 125. On the day of the photograph, it was apparently 17 metres deep.
The collection of Valois Albums is preserved at La Bibliothèque de Documentation Internationale Contemporaine, the Library of Contemporary International Documentation. It contains 546 albums of more than 100,000 photographs, classified by departments or theme, such as aviation and hospitals. The date and place where each photograph was taken has been recorded and for many a caption describes the scene and identifies the main characters. The Valois collection is a major iconographic and documentary resource for understanding the war.
- Full title:
- Army photographic service, Bas-Rhin department
- French Army Photography services, Bas-Rhin Department
- 19 October, 1916
- Held by:
- Bibliothèque Nationale et Universitaire de Strasbourg
- Usage terms:
- Public Domain
- Article by:
- Vanda Wilcox
- Race, empire and colonial troops, Life as a soldier
In a war that saw new weaponry technology and great numbers of casualties, Assistant Professor Vanda Wilcox considers the common experiences of soldiers in active combat.