With the centenary of the outbreak of World War One taking place this summer the British Library’s Web Archiving team has been working with colleagues across the Library and beyond to initiate a ‘First World War Centenary Special Collection’ of websites.
The collection is part of a wide range of centenary projects under way at the Library including:
- A public exhibition, ‘Enduring War: Grief, Grit and Humour’
- A digitisation project with Europeana 1914-1918, a major pan-European project to digitise more than 400,000 items from WW1
- A new British Library World War One website which enables users to explore over 500 newly-digitised historical sources from across Europe and many public events.
These projects will enable thousands of people to engage with the centenary and to showcase the many significant items held by the Library relating to the war.
The Special Collection
The web archive collection will include a huge variety of websites related to the centenary including the various events which will be taking place; resources about the history of the war; academic sites on the meaning of the conflict in modern memory and patterns of memorialisation and critical reflections on British involvement in armed conflict more generally.
The collection will help researchers find out how the First World War shaped our society and continues to touch our lives at a personal level in our local communities and as a nation.
Archiving began in April 2014 and will continue until 2019. Some examples of websites archived so far include:
- 14-18 Now WW1 Centenary Art Commissions
- Bedford Physical Training College - Wartime Stories
- WW1: Experiences of an English Soldier
We need your help!
Do you know of a website which may be suitable for the First World War Centenary Collection? If so, we would love to hear from you, particularly if you edit or publish a WW1 themed website yourself.
Websites could include those created by museums, archives, libraries, special interest groups, universities, performing arts groups, schools and community groups, family and local history societies or individual publications. It does not cost anything to have your website archived by the British Library and involves no work on your part once nominated.
Please nominate UK based WW1 related websites through our nominate form.
If you have HLF funding for a First World War Centenary project, please send the URL (web address) to [email protected] with your project reference number.
See what we have in the WW1 special collection so far.
Written by Nicola Bingham, Web Archivist, British Library