On this day: the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force is Formed

Waaf Australian Auxiliary Air Force REcruitment Poster Second World War Two 1940s

Second World War recruitment poster.

Britain’s Women’s Auxiliary Air Force, whose members were known as WAAFs, was formed on the 28th of June, 1939, shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War. Conscription of women began in 1941.

Women in the organisation worked in many fields, from parachute packing to meteorology, aircraft maintenance, and work with codes, in addition to catering and nursing.

Two WAAF cooks at an Royal Air Force aerodrome, following recipes for a hundred pies and a hundred scones. September 1940.

Two WAAF cooks at an Royal Air Force aerodrome, following recipes for a hundred pies and a hundred scones. September 1940. X

By 1943 over 2000 women were enlisting a week, bringing the force’s numbers to a peak of over 180 000.

At the end of the war numbers reduced significantly, and the WAAF was turned into the  Women’s Royal Air Force in 1949.

May 1940

May 1940 General Maurice Gamelin, Commander in Chief of the French Army, reviews Canadian troops at Aldershot, England shortly before the Dunkirk evacuation. Second world War Two

May 1940: General Maurice Gamelin, Commander in Chief of the French Army, reviews Canadian troops at Aldershot, England shortly before the Dunkirk evacuation.

Second World War.

From the collection of the Imperial War Museum.

On this day: the sinking of the Lusitania

British ocean liner RMS Lusitania was sunk by a German U-boat on the 7th of May, 1915, less than a year into the First World War. 1198 out of 1959 people aboard were killed, and the sinking played a big hand in turning international opinion against Germany.

This propaganda poster was released in Britain the same year, in an attempt to recruit men into the Leicestershire Regiment (now the Royal Leicestershire Regiment).

Leicestershire_Regiment_recruiting_poster_1915 Recruiting poster for the Leicestershire Regiment Men Of Leicestershire. Avenge The Lusitania. How To Do It Britain First World War One

On this day: Wounded soldiers in Norway.

Raid_on_Vaagso,_27_December_1941_N481 Norway British Army Second World War Two Black and White Vintage

27th December 1941: Wounded soldiers are transferred onto a landing craft in Vaagso (the island of Vågsøy), Norway. The country was under Nazi occupation at the time.

The photograph was taken during the one-day Operation Archery, a combined British and Norwegian raid against German forces that resulted in an Allied victory over the Nazis.

The Norwegian commander of the raid, Martin Linge, was killed in action during the operation.

Christmas on the Western Front

British troops eat Christmas dinner in a shell hole in Beaumont Hamel, France on the 25th of December, 1916. The commune was almost completely destroyed during the Battle of the Somme that took place that year.

Source

Christmas_on_the_Western_Front,_1914-1918_Q1630British troops eating their Christmas dinner in a shell hole, Beaumont Hamel, 25th December 1916. First World War One

A Wartime Christmas

December 1916. First World War: Injured soldiers celebrate Christmas in the 3rd Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, England. Sheffield was bombed by a German zeppelin during the war, and soldiers from the region suffered heavy casualties in the Battle of the Somme.

Christmas_at_the_3rd_Northern_General_Hospital,_Sheffield,_1916_(9490957023) Christmas at the 3rd Northern General Hospital, Sheffield, England 1916. First World War One.

 

Source

Eighty Years Ago

15 December 1939 Australian Women waving farewell to troop ship RMS Strathallan Advance Party of the 6th Division to service overseas. Include George Alan Vasey's wife Jessie Vasey. Vase

15th December 1939: Australian women wave farewell to troop ship RMS Strathallan. World War Two.

Second from left is Jessie Vasey, the wife of George Alan Vasey, who did not survive the war. Before her husband’s death Vasey had devoted years for fighting for the rights of war widows.

Australia had joined the conflict over three months before the image was taken.

On this day: a memorial service in Korea

WAR & CONFLICT BOOK ERA: KOREAN WAR/DEATH & DESTRUCTION

Source

3rd December 1950: A wounded chaplain is photographed conducting a memorial service over the snow-covered bodies of dead US Marines.

The image was taken during the Battle of Chosin Reservoir in the Korean War.

On this day: a Veteran Sergeant at Home

A veteran sergeant in the Dorking Home Guard cleans his Tommy gun at the dining room table, before going on parade, 1 December 1940. Second World War Two

1st December 1940: The Blitz, the German air raid campaign against the United Kingdom, was in full force in December of 1940.

Britain’s Home Guard, made up of 1.5 million volunteers ineligible for regular military service (due to circumstances such as age), operated from 1940 to 1944, guarding their homeland during the Second World War.

The caption of this photograph reads:

A veteran sergeant in the Dorking Home Guard cleans his Tommy gun at the dining room table, before going on parade, 1 December 1940.

From the collection of the Imperial War Museum.