Photo Gallery consists of World War I trench
art, mainly shells from field artillery guns,
turned into vases, and classified as follows :
US Divisions, Meuse-Argonne Battles, the Allies,
Symbolic Vases, Botanic Vases, Animals, Shapes,
cutters, propeller, etc. are in the page Various.
collection is online for the enjoyment of
collectors of World War I memorabilia, scholars,
veterans, students and people curious about an
unusual art form. The site is periodically updated
to reflect new acquisitions, as well as
welcome contributions from expert visitors to the
site. The collection is not for sale.
Trench art first appeared in 19th century wars and
flourished in the trenches of the First World War (1914-1918), primarily
on the Western Front, which stretched from the North Sea coast of
Belgium and France,
all the way to the Swiss border.
Trench art transformed whatever scrap metal littered the so-called no
man's land, as well as behind the lines. It was born out of the troops'
need to keep themselves busy during the long lulls between deadly
attacks. Brass cannon shells were changed into vases for dried flowers
and sent home to loved-ones. Vast quantities of rings, bracelets,
letter-openers, desk accessories, matchbox holders, ashtrays and
cigarette lighters were also created.
At the end of the war, those living around the devastated battle-grounds
crafted commemorative vases and other mementos which were brought
back home by war veterans . Some of the surpluses from ordnance
factories were also made into personalized souvenirs.