The Centennial of the Battle of Tannenberg; Germany’s Greatest Success of WW1

August 1, 2014 § Leave a comment

August 26th: One hundred years ago today, Germany achieved it’s greatest victory of World War One, which was defeating the Russians in the Battle of Tannenberg. This was more than three years before Russia pulled out of the war due to their Socialist Revolution.

"Help Stop This W.S.S.," Adolph Treidler, 1918. Fair Condition.

“Help Stop This W.S.S.,” Adolph Treidler, 1918. Fair Condition.

The Battle of Tannenberg was perhaps the most decisive and successful defeat during World War One. Fought in Poland, The Russian Second Army was destroyed and their commander killed by the German army under the commanders Hindenburg and Ludendorff.

Treidler’s poster above shows a menacing, animalistic German soldier amidst a village reduced to rubble. Below the soldier, the words “BUY W.S.S” urge citizens to buy War Savings Stamps, a type of stamp issued by the US Government to help raise funds for the war. The cost of the war for the United States was estimated to be overwhelming sum of thirty billion dollars; both War Savings Stamps and “Liberty Bonds” helped pay for this debt. Posters such as Treidler’s instilled a sense of panic meant to inspire contributions to the war effort through these War Savings Stamps.

This post was written by Nicole Garson, Intern, UCB class of 2016 and Elizabeth Norris, Proprietor of Vintage European Posters

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