Flower beds that meant death for German WWI soldiers





World War I saw the first widespread use of aerial reconnaisance in combat including one unfortunate group of German soldiers, who were discovered because they maintained flower beds outside their barracks.

In the catacombs of the Imperial War Museum, there is a collection of about 150,000 images taken from the air during World War I, documenting the tales of devastation that ripped through Europe between 1914 and 1918.

Air travel in aeroplanes was barely a decade old when war was declared, the first aircraft only crossing the English Channel from France in 1909.

Now Britain was sending its own aircraft back over the Channel into battle.

For the first time war was taking to the skies and - with the work of the photographers - offering those in charge of troops a chance to see the battlefield in an entirely different way.

These aerial photographs of the battlefields' trenches, including pictures of the Somme and Passchendaele, showed just what was happening in the war and, aside from documenting the destruction, became a vital information gathering tool....


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