The Hughes family of 129 Railway Street, Armagh, Northern Ireland pose in military-style clothing on the 19th of July, 1945. Less than a month later VJ Day (the surrender of Japan) occurred, effectively ending the Second World War.
The extensive archives of photographers H. Allison & Co., based in County Armagh, are now available through Wikimedia Commons.
1st July 1945: Australians carry a wounded soldier along the beach at Balikpapan, Borneo. Smoke billows from burning oil tanks bombed by the Japanese.
The Borneo Campaign ran from the 1st of May until Japan’s surrender on the 15th of August, and succeeded in pushing the Japanese further from Australia. However, Japan’s inhumane treatment of Allied prisoners of war became infamous, and included sex slavery and death marches.
Nagoya Castle in Japan was destroyed by Allied bombing on the 14th of May, 1945. The city had been under attack from air raids since April of 1942, and the castle was targeted as it was being used as a Japanese military command post as well as the administrative headquarters for the local prisoner of war camp.
The castle was considered a national treasure. Reconstruction began in the 1950s.
As the Second World War came closer to its end, German soldiers gathered to defend the Bavarian town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber on the 31st of March, 1945.
The town, considered a model of idyllic Nazi life and used as an example for people across Germany, was bombed by sixteen Allied planes that day. Thirty-seven people were killed, and there was significant damage to structures, including the loss of hundreds of homes, half a dozen public buildings, and hundreds of metres of the historic wall.
Even considering the extensive damage, the Allies were aware of Rothenburg’s historical significance and limited the attack in a way they did not with other targets.
Today the town has been carefully reconstructed, and is a popular tourist destination that makes up part of the famed Romantic Road.