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American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection

Overview

Abstract

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Photographs and Negatives

Glass-Plate Negatives

Lantern Slides

Albums



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American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection, 1910-1987 | Archives of the American Field Service and AFS Intercultural Programs

By Cherie Acierno and Nicole Milano

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Collection Overview

Title: American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection, 1910-1987Add to your cart.View associated digital content.

Predominant Dates:1915-1917

ID: RG1/002

Creator: American Field Service

Extent: 6.0 Cubic Feet. More info below.

Arrangement:

The collection has been arranged at the box level, and has been partially processed into the following four series: Photographs and Negatives, Glass-plate Negatives, Lantern Slides, and Albums.

See the individual series descriptions for more information.

Languages: English, French

Abstract

The American Field Service (AFS) was a volunteer ambulance and camion corps serving with the French Army during World War I.  AFS ceased to exist as an independent entity and was absorbed by the United States military when the United States entered the war in 1917.  The American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection consists of photographs and negatives, glass-plate negatives, lantern slides, and albums depicting the activities of the American Field Service, and to a lesser degree of the French and United States militaries, during World War I.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection consists of photographs and negatives, glass-plate negatives, lantern slides, and albums depicting activities of the American Field Service (AFS), and to a lesser degree of the French and United States militaries, during World War I. Some of the photographic material appears to have been used by the organization in press releases and publications to increase awareness of the cause and to recruit volunteers, and also in fundraising efforts to encourage donation of ambulances.    Examples of public relations use include a published book entitled Friends of France (Boston and New York, Houghton Mifflin, 1916), and postcards of headquarters (as seen in Series 1, Subseries 1A.) Some photographs were also used in post-war AFS commemorative publications, such as the three-volume The History of the American Field Service in France (Boston and New York, Houghton Mifflin, 1920).  The photographic material was created by professional photographers or individual AFS ambulance and camion drivers, and donated to AFS headquarters either during or after the war.  It is not always possible to determine what was donated versus what was commissioned or created by AFS during the war.

The photographic records of the American Field Service’s ambulance and camion service in World War I are useful in the study of American involvement prior to the United States’ Declaration of War in 1917.  The collection depicts the voluntary activities of AFS (including assisting injured soldiers and transporting supplies), local landscapes and civilians (including images of Paris), major events and battles in the war (including Verdun), and groups and individuals involved in the war (including ambulance and camion drivers, and members of the French military.)  While the majority of the photographic material depicts AFS activities from 1915 to 1917, there are also some images of the pre-AFS American Ambulance Hospital and of the post-AFS U.S. Army Ambulance Service, which absorbed AFS after the United States entered the war in 1917.  Other later materials include an album featuring American Expeditionary Forces World War I photographs (ca. 1917-1919), with a particularly large number of photographs of heavy artillery and of the ordinance repair shops and salvage depots in Mehun-sur-Yevre.  There are also color photographs of a restored AFS World War I ambulance, which were taken in 1987 by the Fondation de l’Automobile Marius Berliet.

See the individual series descriptions for more information.

Administrative Information

Alternate Extent Statement: 25 boxes

Access Restrictions: This collection is open for research.  Cotton gloves are required for the handling of all photographic material. The lantern slides and glass-plate negatives are very fragile, and some have become cracked or broken over time.  These are specifically labeled “fragile” and should be handled with extreme care.   Permission to view the glass-plate negatives or lantern slides must be obtained from the AFS Archives in advance.

Use Restrictions: Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. Permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Archives. In the event that this research becomes a source for publication, a credit line indicating the Archives of the American Field Service and AFS Intercultural Programs is required. Researchers are responsible for determining any copyright questions.

Acquisition Method: This collection was compiled by the American Field Service staff during and after World War I, and was transferred to the Archives of the American Field Service and AFS Intercultural Programs at an unknown date.

Appraisal Information: Personal collections of photographs, donated by individual drivers and/or their heirs after the war, have been removed from the American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection and separated into individual collections whenever specific donors or drivers have been identified.

Related Materials: There are many individual photographic collections in the Archives of the American Field Service and AFS Intercultural Programs, donated to the archives by individual World War I ambulance or camion drivers and/or their heirs.  Major collections with photographic material include (but are not limited to) the following: Joseph G. Weld Collection (RG1/032); John C. Hanna Collection (RG1/031); John C.B. Moore Collection (RG1/019); Mark V. Brennan Collection (RG1/006); Frank Fiedler Collection (RG1/014); Jansen K. Hoornbeck Collection (RG1/018); Harry R. Perley Collection (RG1/029); Paul A. Rie Collection (RG1/023); Walker Family Collection (RG1/028); Berkeley Michael Collection (RG1/033); Frank H. Boyd Collection (RG1/036); Lawrence B. Cummings Collection (RG1/034); Robert Bridgers Collection (RG1/037); George Van Santvoord Collection (RG1/035); Edward Samuel Collection (RG1/043); Donald W. Searles Collection (RG1/044); John F.W. Huffer Collection (RG1/045); William A. Lowrie Collection (RG1/046); Reuben W. Lovering Collection (RG1/047); Whitney B. Wright Collection (RG1/048); Powel Fenton Collection (RG1/013.)  For photographic material related to the involvement of AFS in World War II, see the American Field Service World War II Photographic Collection (RG2/002.)

Preferred Citation: [Identification of item], [Date]; American Field Service World War I Photographic Collection; Archives of the American Field Service and AFS Intercultural Programs, New York, NY.

Processing Information:

This collection was partially arranged by AFS Archives staff at an unknown date and again by Cherie Acierno and Nicole Milano in 2011.  An inventory for all but two of the photographic albums was created by William Foley at an unknown date, and updated in greater detail by Eleanora Golobic from 1988-1990 under a grant from the Florence J. Gould Foundation.  An inventory of 400 of the loose photographic prints was created by Nancy Cricco in July 1988, and updated by Eleanora Golobic in September 1988, although more than half of these prints were removed to the Powel Fenton Collection (RG1/013) in June 2011.

Preliminary finding aid written by Cherie Acierno and Nicole Milano in June 2011 and encoded in EAD by Cherie Acierno in June 2011.  This finding aid was created under the scope of the 2010-2011 National Historical Publications and Records Commission Basic Processing grant.


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Photographs and Negatives, 1910-1987 (bulk 1915-1917)],
[Series 2: Glass-Plate Negatives, ca. 1915-1917],
[Series 3: Lantern Slides, ca. 1915-1917],
[Series 4: Albums, ca. 1915-1919],
[All]

Series 1: Photographs and Negatives, 1910-1987 (bulk 1915-1917)Add to your cart.

4.1 cubic feet (17 boxes)

The collection includes approximately 1,500 loose photographic prints (some of which are duplicates) ranging in sizes from 1.5” x 2.25” to 8” x 10”, and a small number of negatives. The bulk of the prints have no photographer credit, although some do indicate a photographer on the verso.  Some of the photographs were created by the French Army Photographic Section, and were given to and stored at the AFS headquarters in Paris.  The French Army photographs are clearly identified by a stamp on the back of each image, and have been arranged in separate subfolders.  Most of the remaining loose photographs appear to have been taken by individual American Field Service (AFS) ambulance and camion drivers who may have carried a camera with them for personal use or been commissioned by AFS as a staff photographer, and donated their photographic collections to AFS either during the war or after completion of their service.  It is not usually clear whether these uncredited photographs were donated, or whether they were commissioned or created by AFS.  Some loose prints with credits appear to have been commissioned by the AFS for promotional purposes, and stored at AFS headquarters in France from 1914 to 1919.  This assumption is based on the presence of professional photographs taken by H.C. Ellis, some of which were then made into promotional postcards for AFS during the war (as evidenced in the postcards of Paris headquarters in Series 1, Subseries 1A).  A smaller number of other professional photographic prints are credited to O. King, and there is one print of the Cornell Unit by the Underwood and Underwood studio.

In addition to the loose prints and negatives, there is one box of matted prints, which were marked with notes and crop marks for publication in Friends of France: The Field Service of the American Ambulance Described by its Members (Boston and New York, Houghton Mifflin, 1916), a book created by AFS staff for fundraising and promotional purposes. There are no visible photographer credits on these images.  The first edition of Friends of France was published in August 1916, and the second edition (in large-paper and regular formats) was published in October in 1916. A French translation of the book was completed in 1917. The mat boards seem to have been used in preparation for the English version (probably the October edition.)

The photographic prints and negatives have been partially inventoried, and arranged into the following eight topical subseries: AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Rayounard, AFS Training Facilities, Ambulances, American Hospital (Neuilly), A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti, Friends of France Matted Prints,  Section Sanitaires [Etats-] Unis (SSU), Transport Matériel [Etats-] Unis (TMU) Units.  Photographs and negatives are gathered in random order within each topical subseries, with photographs by the French Army Photographic Section gathered in their own subfolders.  There is also one box of unsorted photographs, which has yet to be arranged.  This topical arrangement appears to be the way photographs and negatives were stored by AFS during the war, though this is not a certainty.  Some non-photographic materials, such as an occasional clipping or document, were filed by AFS personnel within the photographic materials, and this arrangement has been maintained.

Subseries 1A: AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard, ca. 1916-1919Add to your cart.
Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: 21 rue Raynouard, circa 1916-1919Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 2: 21 rue Raynouard (Documents, Prints, Stationary), circa 1916-1919Add to your cart.
Folder 3: 21 rue Raynouard (Reproductions), circa 1916-1919Add to your cart.
Folder 4: Comtesse de la Villestreaux, UndatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 5: French Army Photographs, circa 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 6: H.C. Ellis Photographs, 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 7: H.C. Ellis Photographs (Reproductions), 1917Add to your cart.
Folder 8: O. King Photograph, circa 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Subseries 1B: AFS Training Facilities, ca. 1916-1917Add to your cart.
Box 2Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Officers' Training School at Meaux, 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 2: Training Camp at May-en-Multien, circa 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 3: Training Camp at May-en-Multien (Reproductions)Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Subseries 1C: Ambulances, 1914-1987Add to your cart.
Box 2Add to your cart.
Folder 4: Ambulances, circa 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 5: Ambulances (Reproductions)Add to your cart.
Folder 6: ConstructionAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 7: Construction (Reproductions)Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Construction: O. King PhotographsAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 9: H. C. Ellis Photographs (Folder 1 of 2), 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 10: H.C. Ellis Photographs (Folder 2 of 2), 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 11: H. C. Ellis Photographs (with Drivers) (Folder 1 of 2), 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 12: H.C. Ellis Photographs (with Drivers) (Folder 2 of 2), 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 13: Maintenance, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 14: Maintenance: O. King Photographs, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Subseries 1D: American Hospital, ca. 1914-1915Add to your cart.
Box 2Add to your cart.
Folder 15: American Ambulance Hospital, circa 1914-1916Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 16: American Ambulance Hospital (Reproductions), circa 1914-1916Add to your cart.
Subseries 1E: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti, ca. 1914-1918Add to your cart.
Box 3Add to your cart.
Folder 1: A. Piatt Andrew, ca. 1910-1918Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 2: A. Piatt Andrew (Clippings and Reproductions), ca. 1915-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 3: A. Piatt Andrew (French Army Photographs), ca. 1915-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 4: A. Piatt Andrew Receiving the Legion of Honor, 1917 April 29Add to your cart.
Folder 5: A. P. Andrew Receiving the Legion of Honor (French Army Photographs), 1917 April 29Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 6: A. Piatt Andrew Receiving the Legion of Honor (Reproductions and Modern Negatives), 1917 April 29Add to your cart.
Folder 7: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti at the AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard, circa 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 8: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti at the AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard (French Army Photographs), ca. 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 9: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti at the AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard (H.C. Ellis Photographs), 1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 10: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti at the AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard (H.C. Ellis Photographs, Reproductions), 1917Add to your cart.
Folder 11: A. Piatt Andrew and Stephen Galatti at the AFS Headquarters at 21 rue Raynouard (O. King Photographs), ca. 1916-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 12: Photographs Captioned by A. Piatt Andrew, ca. 1915-1918Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 13: Photographs Possibly Collected by A. Piatt Andrew, ca. 1915-1918Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 14: A. Piatt Andrew in USAAS Uniform (Portrait), 1918Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 15: Stephen Galatti, ca. 1915-1917Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 16: Stephen Galatti (Photograph of Waldo Peirce painting), circa 1917-1918Add to your cart.
Subseries 1F: Friends of France Matted Prints, circa 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Box 4Add to your cart.
Folder 1: (Top) A group of American drivers in Northern France (Bottom) The Cathedral in Nieuport, July 1915, circa 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 2: American Ambulance in Verdun, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 3: American drivers in Alsace, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 4: Americans in their gas-masks in front of the bomb-proof shelter outside of the headquarters, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 5: (Top) An ambulance repair part in Thomannsplatz near Hartmannswillerkopf (Bottom) The "poste de secours" near Hartmannswillerkopf, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 6: (Top) Animal convoy in the snow in Alsace (Bottom) Alsatian woods in winter, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 7: An inspection trip in Alsace, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 8: (Top) Another Flemish "poste de secours" (Bottom) Waiting on a "poste de secours", 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 9: At a "poste" at the very front, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 10: At headquarters of Section IV, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 11: (Top) A "poste de secours" in Flanders (Bottom) A winter day in Flanders, 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 12: Effect of German shells in Alsace (Thann), undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 13: (Left) Mule convoy in Alsace, with trees (Right) Mule convoy in Alsace, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 14: (Top) On the road to Bois-le-Prêtre (Bottom) Fontaine du Père Hilarion, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 15: On the road to Hartmannswillerkopf, December 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 16: (Top) Pont-à-Mousson (Bottom) Shells breaking on the Côte de Mousson, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 17: Richard Hall's grave, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 18: (Top) The Col de Bussang- the Gate to Alsace Reconquise (Bottom) La Terre Promise, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 19: The dangers of the road, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 20: The end of an ambulance, 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 21: (Top) The Harvard Club of Alsace Reconquise (Bottom) Sharing meals at a "poste", undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 22: Transferring the wounded to the train, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 23: Watching an aeroplane duel in Pont-à-Mousson, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 24: What night trips without lights sometimes mean, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 25: Winter in Alsace, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 26: Winter days in Alsace, 1915Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Folder 27: Within site of the German trenches, undatedAdd to your cart.View associated digital content.
Subseries 1G: Sections Sanitaire [Etats-] Unis, ca. 1915-1918Add to your cart.
Box 5: SSU 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: SSU 1, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 2: SSU 1: A. Piatt Andrew, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 3: SSU 1: Belgium, 1915Add to your cart.
Folder 4: SSU 1: Clippings, October 12, 1917Add to your cart.
Folder 5: SSU 1: France, circa 1916-1918Add to your cart.
Folder 6: SSU 1: Grave of Frederick Norton in Ludes, Marne, circa 1917Add to your cart.
Folder 7: SSU 1: Howard Lines, circa 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 8: SSU 1: Reproductions, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Box 6: SSU 2Add to your cart.
Folder 1: SSU 2, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 2: SSU 2: A. Piatt Andrew, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 3: SSU 2: Captioned by A. Piatt Andrew, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 4: SSU 2: French Army Photographs (Folder 1 of 2), circa 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 5: SSU 2: French Army Photographs (Folder 2 of 2), circa 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 6: SSU 2: H.C. Ellis Photographs, 1917Add to your cart.
Folder 7: SSU 2: Reproductions and Modern Negatives, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Box 7: SSU 3Add to your cart.
Folder 1: SSU 3, circa 1917-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 2: SSU 3: Alsace (Folder 1 of 2), 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 3: SSU 3: Alsace (Folder 2 of 2), 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 4: SSU 3: Alsace (Reproductions), 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 5: SSU 3: Arthur Bluethenthal, 1916-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 6: SSU 3: Arthur Bluethental (Reproductions), 1916-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 7: SSU 3: Balkans, 1916-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 8: SSU 3: Balkans (Inventoried), 1916-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 9: SSU 3: Balkans (Edward Sortwell's Grave), circa 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 10: SSU 3: French Army Photographs, circa 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 11: SSU 3: Henry Suckley, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 12: SSU 3: John Munroe Passport Photograph, undatedAdd to your cart.
Folder 13: SSU 3: Richard Hall (Reproductions and Memorials), undatedAdd to your cart.
Folder 14: SSU 3: Richard Hall's Gravesite, 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 15: SSU 3: Richard Hall's Gravesite (French Army Photographs), 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 16: SSU 3: Stephen Galatti, circa 1915-1917Add to your cart.
Folder 17: SSU 3: Stephen Galatti (Reproductions), circa 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 18: SSU 3: Verdun, 1916Add to your cart.
Folder 19: SSU 3: Waldo Peirce, circa 1915-1916Add to your cart.
Folder 20: SSU 3: Waldo Peirce (Reproduction), 1915Add to your cart.
Box 8: SSU 4Add to your cart.
Box 9: SSU 8 and 9Add to your cart.
Box 10: SSU 10Add to your cart.
Box 11: SSU 12-14Add to your cart.
Box 12: SSU 15-19 and 26-33Add to your cart.
Box 13: SSU 64-66Add to your cart.
Box 14: SSU 67-72Add to your cart.
Subseries 1H: Transport Matériel [Etats-] Unis Units, ca. 1917-1918Add to your cart.
Box 15: TMU 133, 184, 526 and 537Add to your cart.
Unsorted 1Add to your cart.
Box 16: Unsorted PrintsAdd to your cart.
Box 17: Unsorted PrintsAdd to your cart.
Box 18: OversizeAdd to your cart.

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Photographs and Negatives, 1910-1987 (bulk 1915-1917)],
[Series 2: Glass-Plate Negatives, ca. 1915-1917],
[Series 3: Lantern Slides, ca. 1915-1917],
[Series 4: Albums, ca. 1915-1919],
[All]


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