Breathtaking photos showing the agony and ecstasy of the end of the First World War have been brought to life in color for the first time.
Jubilant crowds in New York can be seen celebrating the allied forces’ victory and joyful soldiers make the long journey home from the front lines. Man charged after woman, 73, burgled then stabbed to death at home. Another photo reveals nuns peacefully laying wreaths in a field of mass graves.
But these photos stand in stark contrast to ones depicting coffins of fallen British troops being solemnly carried through the streets of London.
The photos were colorized by Cardiff based electrician Royston Leonard, who painstakingly brought them into the 21st century. ”The First World War was the first-time machines took over the battlefield, guns got massive with both sides raining down shells by the day,” he said. “It made it hell for troops on the ground to the point where the men just had no hope at all, it was just madness.”
The announcement of armistice brought ecstatic scenes to Philadelphia. This picture was taken on Nov 11, 1918.
Captain Benjamin H Geary VC, 1st Battalion, East Surrey Regiment being carried in on a stretcher by prisoner bearers at Achiet-le-Petit. 21 Aug 1918.
A crowd of soldiers on the Western Front celebrating as an officer announces the news of the Armistice.
Three soldiers look out across a battlefield where wagons are upturned and destroyed and craters break up the mud.
A group of troops wave their hats as they pose for a camera on the edge of a road next to some hedgerows on Armistice Day.