Tuesday, June 4, 2013

World War II: Then and Now

Image 1, c. 1944; click image for larger view.

Image 1, c. 2009; click image for larger view.
Image 2, c. 1944; click image for larger view.
Image 2, c. 2009; click image for larger view.
Image 3, c. 1944; click image for larger view.
Image 3, c. 2009; click image for larger view.
Image 4, c. 1944; click image for larger view.
Image 4, c. 2009; click image for larger view.

Image 5, c. 1944; click image for larger view.

Image 5, c. 2009; click image for larger view.
Image 6, c. 1944; click image for larger view.
Image 6, c. 2009; click image for larger view.

HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHAT YOUR STREET MIGHT HAVE LOOKED LIKE 50, 75 OR EVEN 100 YEARS AGO? If you live in an older area or big city, there could be images available to show you. But if you live in a subdivision or new expansion areas, there could be nothing but corn fields, trees or pasture land.

If you have a curiosity or interest about the Second World War, these historic images of Normandy in 1944 (and today) will certainly interest you. What these images say to me is that no matter what—life goes on.

Via Fishki.

All color photos are exclusive copyright © Patrick Elie.


henk van es said...

Hello John,
This in my opinion is a wonderful and very moving series of pictures. I am always very interested in how streets and physical environments happenend to look loke in former times, but this comparative show of 1944 war time and nowadsys peacetime pictures is just impressing. Thanks for posting and all the best. Henk

Hannah Stephenson said...

This is very touching.

It is amazing that so many of the structures that were damaged have been repaired (and not always fully replaced). Very beautiful.

John Foster said...

Hello Henk and Storialist— Yes, I know, these are very moving photos. It is great that many structures were repaired and still stand today. I lived, as a child of 8 or 9, for a year in the town of my grandmother in the state of South Carolina. When I went there to visit some 40 years later, the place had obviously changed a lot— but I was so taken back by what remained. It was like bringing back for inspection a distant, distant memory. Imagine the feeling a soldier may have to revisit a battlefield 40 years later (as so many have done) and be able to say "I lay in this very spot... right here!" Absolutely dreamlike.

Dull Tool Dim Bulb said...

Hi John. Life does indeed go on, but for so, so many during those years, it ended way too early. I believe anywhere a battle was fought is now sacred somehow...and get furious each time I read wal-mart wants to take over another civil war battlefield.

mire said...

Hi John
Here is a link to the photos on Patrick Elie's webisite:

Regards, Tim

chiaroscuro said...

These are wonderful. It surprises me how little has changed over, which seems, a long period.
When I have to kill time I go to a bookstore and browse through the books that show old photographs from every district in my city. It is so fascinating.

John Foster said...

Hi Jim: I agree completely. No Civil War battlefield of any consequence should be defiled in such a way. Insensitive corporate greed. I visited Gettysburg with my daughter when she was about 12— it remains one of those sacred places, thank God. I, at least, maybe she was too young at the time— walked with nothing but respect amongst the ghosts of those crying and breathing their last.

These photos show how Normandy has pulled itself together after the war— saving whatever could be saved. Those remaining buildings (repaired) are that very testament of how life goes on, in a vast populated area, where people have to pull themselves together in order to survive.

John Foster said...

Hi Mire (Tim)-- Patrick Elie's web site is fascinating. I probably just spent 45 minutes there and had to pull myself away. Some of the best images of the Normandy Invasion I have ever seen. Sad, so my pics of bright, young and able men whose lives were to end later that day—or later on in the war. Their lives were measured in minutes—or survivng a day at a time until they could come home.

Anonymous said...

WOW! wonderful before and after...I am a vet and know about war...Gary

Aathira Nair said...

Here are some flashcards to show you what the world went through

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