In 1914, the German army marched to the gates of Paris but an Allied victory at the Marne river pushed the Germans back. This became the start of the trench war.
Although immediate danger had passed, the war was never far away for the citizens of Paris. German zeppelins bombed the city in 1915 and 1916. In 1918 it came under fire of a long-range siege gun, nicknamed “Paris Gun”. It’s understandable that the French wanted to protect their precious monuments.
The stereoviews are produced by the renowned stereoscopy innovator Jules Richard. He produced a large collection of glass slides with images from the First World War, all in 45x107 format. They are more rare than the slides of other manufacturers, like La Stéréoscopie Universelle and Brentano's.
The slides are marked "VERASCOPE RICHARD" in typescript. They contain a stylish handwritten six-digit number and a title. The title starts with Protection des Monuments, followed by a description of the monument. All slides have a similar brown tone.
- Parijs onder vuur in 1918, Eric R.J. Wils (via: Eerste Wereldoorlog 1914 - 1918)