McMaster University digitzes WWI trench maps

November 1914, London, England. British First World War Recruiting Posters collection, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario.

November 1914, London, England. British First World War Recruiting Posters collection, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario.

To mark the 100th anniversary of the start of WWI, McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario has digitized more than 1,350 trench maps and 580 photos from France and Belgium that the university acquired over the years. These artifacts join the more than 340 WWI recruitment posters and dozens of copies of sheet music of war songs available online.

So far, 500 maps and 600 photos have been posted on McMaster’s website. The university hopes to have the rest of its collection uploaded by summer.

According to the Hamilton Spectator, “McMaster has had an impressive collection of First World War maps for decades, but its holdings became internationally renowned when the university purchased the $120,000 Western Front collection of English historian Peter Chasseaud.”

Another Hamilton Spectator article, Eight decades in the wrong grave: Mac map collection helps solve family mystery, explains how an Australian used the maps to learn where a great-uncle was buried in France.

When you visit McMaster’s website, explore the Peace and War in the 20th Century collection that includes WWI posters, photographs, maps, letters, and case studies and the WWII German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection.

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About Gail Dever

Gail Dever is a Montreal-based genealogist and blogger and a webmaster for the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa.
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