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New Virtual Exhibition: “To My Peoples!”

Together with the Austrian National Library and Google Cultural Institute we created a new virtual exhibition to commemorate the First World War. Based on the physical exhibition curated by renowned historian Univ.-Prof. Dr. Manfried Rauchensteiner, aspects of the First World War’s history are presented in seven chapters and illustrated by material accessible through Europeana.

The exhibition guides you through the Emperor’s manifestos, from announcements for mobilisation, to administering shortages, to dealing with prisoners of war and refugees. It focuses on the role of Emperor Franz Joseph and his successor and grandnephew Karl. The big influence of the First World War on children is presented in remarkable drawings and letters by students in the chapter “My dear Pupils”. The exhibitions ends with a selection of photographs from the front, the hinterland and life in the field.

All items in this virtual exhibition are on Europeana 1914 – 1918, where we collect World War One related materials from Cultural Institutions and stories from the public such as unpublished letters, photographs and keepsakes from the war are being collected and digitised.

Digitisation nowadays plays a vital role in discovering interesting artefacts to illustrate history and to enable transnational perspectives on historic events. Hans Petschar, Historian and Librarian at the Austrian National Library: “Europeana 1914-1918 permits to overcome National stereotypes and nationalist historical views on the First World War dominating the Centenary events 2014. Looking at the fascinating individual memories from all regions and parts of Europe we can imagine the scientific potential of transnational and global views on the Great War.”

For the first time we have created a virtual exhibition together with Google Cultural Institute. Simon Rein, Programme Manager at Google: "We're very excited about our partnership with Europeana, and especially delighted that through our cooperation, the Austrian National Library was able to create a fascinating online exhibit on First World War memorabilia during this centenary year. This launch is what the Google Cultural Institute is about - providing tools and services that enable our partners to tell important stories and share diverse perspectives on the cultural and historic events that have shaped our world. We look forward to continuing this important work with our partners."

Visit Google Cultural Institute to explore the exhibition

All items are from the Austrian National Library.

Read more on the Austrian National Library's Research and Development Department blog.

Image credits:

An Meine Volker: Announcement, “To My Peoples”, November 1916 (Nov 21, 1916) - Public Domain. ONB

Arm:“Spitzy's radialis splint” (1914 - 1918) - Public Domain. ONB

Zeppelin letter: School essay, “How I attacked London by night in my Zeppelin”1915. Rights Reseverd, ONB

Mitburger: Announcement, “Fellow citizens”Dec 2, 1914 - Public Domain. ONB

Soldiers: Midday in the trench (Jun 25, 1916) - Public Domain. ONB

Zeppelin drawing: School essay, “How I attacked London by night in my Zeppelin”1915. Rights Reseverd, ONB

Commemoration ceremony of the United Nations with film material from EFG1914 on Tuesday, 8 July 2014, at the UN headquarters in New York

The Deutsches Filminsitut, co-ordinator of the European film digitisation project about the First World War, EFG1914, and its European partners welcome the appreciation of their work by the United Nations.

With a ceremonial event, the United Nations commemorate the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War in the presence of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon tonight (6:30 pm local time) in New York. The event will be the only commemoration of WW1 that will bring all the Member States of the United Nations together. A clip with film material digitised by the EFG1914 partners will be shown to several hundred international diplomatic representatives as introduction to the event. European film archives participating in the EFG1914 digitisation project provided the trailer to the UN. It shows original footage from and about WW1, which was digitised with support by the European Commission over the last two years. EFG1914 has digitised more then 700 hours of historic film material and made these available online for the first time on the European Film Gateway and on Europeana.

Organised by the Permanent Missions of France and Germany, the event commemorates the tragedy of the First World War and sends out a joint message of peace and reconciliation through a speech by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. „We very much appreciate that footage from the valuable films digitised by EFG1914 partners can now be seen on the central commemoration event of the United Nations“, says Claudia Dillmann, Director of the Deutsches Filminstitut.

A live webcast of the event will be available 8 July 2014 at 18:30 EDT (0:30 CEST):

Read more

Upcoming Events

Read our press release on the launch of Europeana 1914-1918

Here's where our family history roadshows are being held next:

United Kingdom

Boston Spa, 2 August 2014, 11am - 5pm
British Library, Boston Spa, Wetherby, West Yorkshire, LS23 7BQ UK
More information

Reading. August 10 2014, 11am-4pm
Reading Museum, The Town Hall, Blagrave Street, Reading, Berkshire, RG1 1QH UK


Vienna, Friday, 1 August 2014 10:00-18:00
ORF Radiokulturhaus, Argentinierstr. 30a, 1040 Wien, Austria


Friday 8 August 2014 from 10:00 to 16:00 and Saturday 9 August 2014 from 9:30 to 13.00
Library of the High School A. Vlaicu, Orastie

The Netherlands

Friday 10 October 2014 - 11.00 tot 17.00
Tresoar - Boterhoek 1, 8911 DH Leeuwarden
About Tresoar [in Dutch]

Friday 10 October 2014 - 10:00 tot 17:00
Huis van de Stad, Burgemeester Jamesplein 1, 2803 PG Gouda
Organised by Streekarchief Midden-Holland [in Dutch]
About Streekarchief Midden-Holland

Friday 24 October 2014 - 10.00 tot 21.00
Archief Eemland - Eemplein 73 (Het Eemhuis, 3rd floor) 3812 EA Amersfoort
About Archief Eemland [in Dutch]


National Library of Greece, 20 & 21 June
2 Panepistimiou Street, Athens
Time to be confirmed

Public Libraries of Veria and Chania, 27 & 28 June
Time and directions to be confirmed

Municipal Library of Thessaloniki, 27 & 28 June
Ethnikis Aminis 27, Thessaloniki
Time to be confirmed

Central Public Library of Serres, N. Nikolaou 20, Serres, 27 & 28 June
Time to be confirmed


Sunday 22 June 2014, 10:00 - 18:00
Festung Franzensfeste / Forte Fortezza, 39045 Franzensfeste / Fortezza
More information / Information about Forte Fortezza


Please check out this website regularly for more information and updates.

Click here to visit our virtual exhibition!