PIERRE's PHOTO IMPRESSIONS of the WESTERN FRONT
1914-1918
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              Pierre Grande Guerre
              shows his
              photo impressions
              of his trips along
              the Western Front
              with his selfmade photo's,
              historic pictures,
              and maps.
              Few words,
              many pictures,
              and many links.
               
              Pierre
               
               
              Warning: Sometimes on the battlefield
              you will still find relics of explosives.
              All these shells, hand grenades, and
              mortar rounds can even nowadays still
              be very dangerous.
              Some of the artillery bombs may contain
              poison gas, which can cause severe
              blistering or worse injuries.
              In France it is by law forbidden to
              remove relics from the battlefield.
              So, it is for your own safety:
              take a picture of the steel harvest,
              but leave these relics untouched!
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              Pierre is a Dutch member
              of the Canadian
              Central Ontario Branch
              of the Western Front
              Association,
              In 2015 awarded with
              a lifetime membership!
               
              And a member of:
               
               
              The Western Front
              Association Nederland
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              Vogezen - 1914-1915 -
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              reconstructie van de
              krijgsverrichtingen
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              Régiment d'Infanterie" 
               
               
               
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              LINKS TO THE SPECIAL

              PHOTO IMPRESSIONS

              NEW! Pierre's Illustrated

              Lecture "Verdun 1916" - (Dutch)

              Pierre's illustrated

              WFA-NL lectures:

              The Tactical Significance 

               of General Gaede - (Bilingual)

              The Difficult Start

              of the L.I.R. 123 - (Eng)

              De Moeizame Start van

              het L.I.R. 123 - (Dutch)

              De Rode Duivels

              op de Hartmannswillerkopf (Dutch)

              De Blauwe Duivels

              in de Vogezen (Dutch)

              Botchkareva en haar

              Vrouwenbataljon (Dutch)

              Mata Hari -

              Het Spionagedossier (Dutch)

              More Special

              Photo Impressions

              of the Western Front (English) 

              Armistice Clearing Compiègne

              Kaiser's Exile Huis Doorn

              Cambrai

              Fort de Mutzig - Feste Kaiser Wilhelm II

              Colmar and Hansi, the Illustrator 

              The Red Baron's Crash Site

              Canadian National Vimy Memorial

              SOMME 1918 The Australians

              Fricourt Archeological Excavations

              Traces of Bairnsfather  - Xmas Truce

              Yorkshire Trench and Dugout

              Bayernwald Trenches Inside

              Maple Copse Cemetery 

              LINKS TO ALL
              BATTLEFIELD
              PHOTO IMPRESSIONS
              in the CORRECT SEQUENCE

              AISNE 

              Chemin des Dames part 1 

              Chemin des Dames part 2 - Dragon's Cave

              Chemin des Dames part 3     

              ALSACE LORRAINE

              The Gap of Charmes - La Trouée de C.

              Avricourt - Leintrey - Reillon - Montreux - Parux 

              Montreux German Front Walk

              The Battle of Morhange - 1914

              French Bunkers - Mnt. Grand Couronné 

              South of Metz - German Bunkers -

              Feste Wagner 

              ALSACE VOSGES NORTH

              Tête du Violu - Bernhardstein

              Chaume de Lusse - Haute de Faîte

              Bertrimoutier - Frapelle  

              Ban de Sapt - La Fontenelle

              Senones - la Roche Mère Henry

              Col de la Chipotte - de la Chapelotte

              The Donon - Bunkers - Dug-outs

              ALSACE VOSGES  

              Col du Bonhomme Col de Mandray

              Tête de Faux - Buchenkopf 

              Col du Wettstein - Schratzmännele

              Lingekopf - le Linge  

              Kleinkopf - Barrenkopf 

              Hohrodberg-Giragoutte-Trois Epis  

              Reichackerkopf  

              Munster Valley Petit Ballon  

              Le Tanet - Bichtstein - Villa Sidi-Brahim

              Route des Crêtes - Hohneck -

              Gr. Ballon - Sudelkopf 

              Hartmannswillerkopf - Vieil Armand  

              Guebwiller - Rimbach - Hirzstein  

              Moosch Nécropole Nationale  

              ALSACE SUNDGAU  

              Zillisheim Illfurth Largitzen Pfetterhouse 

              Burnhaupt-le-Bas Bunker Path     

              ARGONNE

              Mort Homme Côte 304

              Montfaucon- Romagne s/s Montfaucon

              Butte de Vauquois

              Haute Chevauchée

              The Bunker of the German Crownprince

              ARTOIS

              Illies - Wicres    

              Neuve Chapelle - Richebourg

              Aubers - 1915 

              Fromelles - 1916  

              Neuville-St. Vaast - Souchez

              Notre Dame de Lorette 

              Loos

              Arras Wellington Quarry

              Vimy Ridge

              Lichfield Crater

              CHAMPAGNE

              St. Hilaire le Grand Russian Cmty  Mont Navarin

              Sommepy Mont de Blanc Mont

              La Main des Massiges

              MARNE 

              Verberie Néry Villers Cotterêts  

              First Battle of the Marne   

              Belleau Wood - Château Thierry  

              Second Battle of the Marne

              SAINT MIHIEL

              Les Eparges Ridge

              Calonne Trenches Tranchée

              Fort de Troyon

              Apremont Forest Trenches

              Butte de Montsec

              Rémenauville Destroyed Village

              le Bois le Prêtre / das Priesterwald 

              SOMME British Sector

              SOMME INTRODUCTION

              Auchonvillers Trench

              Mine Craters Lochnagar Hawthorn

              Thiepval Memorial Mouquet Farm  

              Thiepval Wood - Ulster Tower

              Ovillers La Boiselle

              Hawthorn Ridge Beaumont Hamel

              Redan Ridge 

              Newfoundland Memorial Park  

              Serre Hébuterne 

              Sheffield Memorial Park Serre

              Gommecourt 

              Fricourt Deutsche Kriegsgräberstatte 

              Contalmaison 

              Mametz Wood 

              Trones Wood Montauban Guillemont

              Caterpillar Valley Longueval 

              High Wood Longueval

              Delville Wood Longueval

              Pozières  

              Martinpuich

              le Sars Butte de Warlencourt

              Flers Gueudecourt

              Adanac Canadian Cmty. Mireaumont

              SOMME French Sector 

              Bouchavesnes

              Rancourt Cimetière National

              Rancourt Deutscher Soldatenfriedhof

              Dompierre - Becquincourt Fay Soyécourt

              Flaucourt Biaches

              VERDUN

              VERDUN Citadel 

              Thiaumont - PC 118 & 119 - A 320

              Road To Fort Douaumont       

              Fort de Douaumont

              Douaumont Nécropole Nationale  

              Côte Froideterre - Les 4 Chéminées 

              Fort de Souville 

              Fort de Vaux 

              Tunnel de Tavannes Fort

              La Voie Sacrée

              Bois des Caures - Col. Driant's C.P. 

              Flabas German Reprisals Camp

              The German Camp Marguerre 

              Duzey German 380mm Artillery Base

              Destroyed Villages Bezonvaux - Ornes

              Azannes - Damvillers - La Grande Montagne 

              YPRES

              Menin Road Railway Wood

              Hill 62 Sanctuary Wood

              Hooge

              Clapham Junction Zandvoorde Bunker

              Polygon Wood Zonnebeke

              Hill 60 Hollebeke Lankhof Farm

              Messines Ridge

              Pilkem Ridge

              Boezinge Essex Farm Ziegler Bunker

              Langemark Poelkapelle St. Juliaan

              Passchendaele Ridge

              Mount Kemmel Lettenberg Bunkers

              Ploegsteert Wood

              YZER

              Nieuport Ramskapelle

              Pervijze  Stuijvekenskerke

              Diksmuide Trench of Death 

              Leke Vladslo Houthulst

              OTHER GREAT WAR LINKS

              Pierre's Nederlandstalige
              artikelen en columns
              over de Grote Oorlog
               
              (Copy & Paste de titel in de
              zoekmachine!) 
               
              Bochkareva en haar Vrouwenbataljon
              Bretonse Bécassine tijdens de Oorlog
              De Vanceboro Bridge Bomaanslag
              Beneath Hill 60
              Tijdreizen Op Internet
              Leutnant Von Forstner Koopt Chocolade
              Duitslands Oudste Oorlogsvrijwilliger
              Marcel's Bajonet
              Souvenir de Bezonvaux
              Namibië-Etnische Zuivering-1904-1908
              Het Beleg van Fort de Vaux
              Explosiecatastrofe In Fort Douaumont 
              Franse Aas der Azen: René Fonck
              Chasseurs Alpins, Franse Alpenjagers
              Prowse Point Cemetery
              Hoe Sgt. Kunze Fort Douaumont
                 veroverde op 25-02-1916.
              Frank Hurley: Fotoshoppen In 1917
              De Kaiserschlacht,
                 een beknopte samenvatting.
              Herdenking Op Douaumont 2008
              Wapenstilstand 1918 -90 Jaar Geleden
              Vijfde Lustrum WFA Nederland,
                 11-10-2008.
              Geur van Drukinkt
              De Vallei van Munster
              Der Rote Baron Versus Flyboys 
              De Fantomen van Landowski
              Louise de Bettignies -
                 Queen of English Spies
              Monument Op Vimy Ridge
              De Erewacht van
                 Notre Dame de Lorette
              Tank Tegen Tank 90 Jaar Terug
              Von Richthofen's Laatste Noodlanding
              Generaal Von Lettow Vorbeck
              Grafschennis Notre Dame de Lorette
              Google Earth 
              De Kaiserschlacht 90 Jaar Geleden 
              De Wolfsberg - le Hamel
              Overleden Veteranen
              Franse Sector Aan De Somme
              Kerstbestand 1914
              Raadselachtig Graf
              Caporetto; Kiem Van Fascisme
              Lenin's Treinreis
              Tsjechen Aan Het Westelijk Front
              Mata Hari
              325 Miljoen Voor 12 Zeppelins
              Slagvelden Van de Somme
              Schroot
              Op de Lingekopf
              Weinig Duitse Monumenten
                  Somme
              Soldaten Standbeelden
              Mosterdgas 1917
              Schwaben Redoubt
              Oogst Van Roest
              Mortier
              De Tekenaar Hansi
              Gifgas Bij Vancouver Corner
              Nationaliteit Kwijt?
              Beloond Geduld
              Prins Harry Naar Irak
              Thiepval
              De Arm Van De Kaiser
              Artilleriebunkers Nabij Duzey
              Kamp Flabas
              Eerherstel voor "Deserteurs"
              Vredig plekje?
              Moslimmonument in Verdun 
              Bayernwald
              De Slag aan de Somme
              De Tunnel van Tavannes
              Kapitein Joost van Vollenhoven
              Huis Doorn
              Update
                 “Raadselachtig Ansichtkaartje II
              Raadselachtig Ansichtkaartje I 

               

               












              Thiaumont - PC 118 - 119 - Abri 320
               
              Verdun:
               
              Thiaumont
               
              Tranchée de Bayonets (Trench of Bayonets)
               
              Ouvrage de Thiaumont
               
              Command Post 118
               
              Command Post 119
               
              Abri 320
               
              Years of visit: 1986, 1994, 2005, and 2009.
              A visit to the area around Ouvrage de Thiaumont,
              and around the Nécropole Nationale de Douaumont,
              centrepoint of the Battlefield of Verdun.
               
               
              Tranchée des Bayonets  (Trench of Bayonets).
               
              North of the Douaumont Cemetery.
               

              The Battle of Verdun started with a German bombardment of ship-artillery and train-artillery sometimes from 32 km away.
               
               
              (Visit later also my photo page about the German Artillery Base near Duzey!)
               
              This bombardment was sustained by 1.220 other canons,
              and lasted for 9 hours.
               
               
              This trench was an outpost on the westflank of Fort Douaumont.
               
              "The MEMORIAL of the TRENCH of the BAYONETS has been conceived to save in tact this famous piece of terrain as it was at the end of the war, from which the rifles stick out of the ground of the HEROES, who have been buried here alive.
              The MINISTER of VETERANS and VICTIMS OF WAR."
               
              This trench forms the grave of two batallions
              of the French 137th Infantry Regiment .
               
               
              Although a lot of these bombs missed their target,
              their explosions were so heavy, ...
               
               
              ... that the rather unbelievable legend sets itself in history;
              the artillery bombs buried the soldiers alive in their trench.
               
               
              In this place you still can see the attachments of the bayonets to the gunbarrels, sticking out of the ground.
               
               
               
              A last view of the ugly concrete memorial.
               
               
               
              This sector of the front was headed by the German Crown Prinz, Wilhelm, Commander of the 5th Army. From the beginning of the war, 2 August 1914, untill the end, "Little Willie" would stay in command in the sector of Verdun.
               
               
              As 3rd man in command, of course he was, after General von Falkenhayn and General von Knobelsdorf, one of the masterminds of the attack in 1916, which led to the Battle of Verdun.
               
               
              Von Falkenhayn choosed Verdun, because he expected, that the French would never give up this town and by their patriotic defense:
              "The French forces would bleed themselves to dead."
              He concentrated the attacks on Cote 304, Le Mort Homme, Fort de Vaux, Ouvrage de Froideterre and Fort de Douaumont.
               
               
              The Battle of Verdun would last 10 months,
              from 21 February to 21 December 1916.
               
              We pass the Nécropole Nationale de Douaumont, ...
                
               
               ... once the centrepoint of this battlefield for a period
              of 10 months, to reach the area west of the Ossuary: ...
               
               
              ... the relics of the Ouvrage (Redoubt) de Thiaumont.
               
               
              The farm of Thiaumont and the Ouvrage were under constant fire.
               
               
               
              "HERE, FROM JUNE UNTIL OCTOBER 1916, HAVE TAKEN PLACE FURIOUS COMBATS, WHICH PUSHED TO THE LIMITS OF HEROISM. THE REDOUBT OF THIAUMONT HAS BEEN LOST AND RETAKEN MORE THAN TWENTY TIMES.
              THE 5th, 7th, 8th, 19th, 21th, 28th, 31th, 32th, 33th, 38th, 52th, 55th, 60th, 67th, 68th, 129th, 130th, 131th, 151th INFANTRY DIVISIONS AND THE 127th AND 261th INFANTRY BRIGADES HAVE TAKEN PART IN THESE TERRIBLE COMBATS.
              ON 24 OCTOBER 1916 THE 4TH MIXED REGIMENT OF ZOUAVES AND RIFLEMEN, THE 6TH BATTALION OF 8TH INDIGENOUS TIRAILLEURS OF THE 38TH INFANTRY DIVISION HAVE HAD THEIR GLORY AND THE MERIT OF DEFINITELY CONQUERING THE REDOUBT OF THIAUMONT.
              THEIR BANNER IS DECORATED WITH THE CROSS OF THE LEGION OF HONOUR AND WEARS IN IT'S FOLDS THE PRESTIGIOUS CITATION, SO ENVIED,
              VERDUN - DOUAUMONT."
               
              After these words there are no more words needed.
              From here let the photo's tell their own story about
              the Ouvrage de Thiaumont.
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
              View from the Ouvrage de Thiaumont over the battlefield,
              scattered with shell holes , ...
               
               
              ... to the memorials on top of the Command Post 118.
               
               
               
              Command Post 118.
               
              Not more than 500 m. away from the Ouvrage Thiaumont lies Command Post 118.
               
               
              Originally this shelter was an "in between" bunker, number 118, or bunker FT 4.
               
               
              "FT" stands here for the French front sector of
              Froideterrre - Thiaumont.
               
               
              On top of Command Post 118: two memorials.
               
               
              "PAUL MERLANT (BORN) 31 JULY 1895 - 1ST JUNE 1916.
              CORPORAL FOURRIER OF THE 293RD INFANTRY REGIMENT BURIED UNDER THE POST 118 AT THIAUMONT- ASCENSION 1916 - PRAY FOR HIM."
               
              The left memorial:
              The Dragoon, Raymond de Fontaines,
              has disappeared from here on 2 June 1916.
               
               
              View from the roof of Abri 118 to the Ouvrage de Thiaumont.
               
               
               
              A last view of Command Post 118.
               
               
              We go on some 400 m. to the south west ...
               
              Command Post 119.
               
               
              The same text as on the sign near the Ouvrage de Thiaumont.
              Command Post 119, part of the Ouvrage de Thiaumont, was also conquered more than 20 times in 10 months.
               
               
               
              Command Post 119 is also known as Abri FT 3.
               
               
              On the roof on the right, there are 2 memorials to be found.
               
              Left:
              Second Lieutenant H. Mialet fell here on 1 August 1916.
              Right:
              "TO THE GLORIOUS MEMORY OF THE CHIEF OF THE BATTALION CHARLES RIDOUARD, OFFICERS AND NCO'S, CORPORALS, AND SOLDIERS OF THE 5TH BATTALION OF THE 317TH INFANTRY REGIMENT WHO DIED FOR FRANCE DURING THE FIRE BLAZE OF COMMAND POST 119 ON 31 JULY 1916."
               
              The central entrance to the post.
               
               
               We enter the post from the left or west.
               
               
              The situation inside has become quite dangerous.
              2009: The concrete ceiling of the corridor is hanging loose.
               
               
              This bunker is alas in serious decay.
              2005:
              Compare the photo's of 2009 with the photo's of 2005 below.
               
               
               
              Two 2009 photo's of the locked interior, left in the corridor.
               
               
              A last 2009 view at Command Post 119.
               
               
              We turn back to the Douaumont Cemetery.
               
              East of the D 913, at the foot of the cemetery, lies Abri 320. 
                
               
              Abri 320 is a large 4 shelter bunker system,
              exactly like the bunkers of Les Quatres Cheminées.
               
               
              Looking eastward,
              into the direction of the German lines on the horizon.
               
               
               
               
              Notice the "golfball"-pattern of the shell holes.
               
               
               
              The follow up of infantry attacks concentrated on
              Fort de Douaumont and Fort de Vaux.
               
               
               Continue to the next chapter:


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