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German Trenches after Three Day's Bombardment

All quiet on Germany's Western Front, but the ferocity of Allied artillery bombardment is plain to see in these eerie scenes of carnage.

Non-Fiction 1915 1 mins Silent


Thanks to Allied artillery, all that remains of German defences on this unidentified section of the Western Front are smouldering ashes and bails of barbed wire rolling like tumbleweed over the barren land. By 1915 trench warfare was well underway and this fragment of an unknown newsreel is a poignant testament to the ferocity of Allied guns, and a morale boost for audiences back home.

Rolls of heavy-duty barbed wire were positioned in front of trenches along with sandbags to impede the movement of the enemy and lessen the effect of grenade attacks on Frontline troops. German trenches and dug-outs were notoriously well-constructed and this footage is a far cry from the intact captured German trenches depicted in other newsreels such as British Pathé’s Trenches Taken from Germans (1914-1918). The opening intertitle was inserted at a much later date, probably following decomposition of the original frames.