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Group Photograph (November 26, 1916)

Group portraits were popular among amateur photographers in uniform, not least for financial reasons. One can assume, for instance, that each person included in this photograph bought at least one copy to keep as a memento or to send home, as was the case with the author of this postcard, Gotthold Schabel. Taking group photographs could therefore easily translate into supplemental income for soldier-photographers. Not surprisingly, scenes like the one below were very common. The photographer’s hand in the arrangement of the scene is immediately evident: among other interventions, he is likely to have posed the soldiers who are sitting (or propped up on their elbows) at the front. The two machine guns placed in front of the first row of men indicate the company’s specialization.

The postcard reads as follows:

27.11.16 (Postmark November 26, 1916)

Dear Nurse Christine!
You will know, of course, where we again find ourselves at this time. This evening, I'll get into position again along with my company.
Yours truly, Gotthold Schabel.

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Group Photograph (November 26, 1916)

Photographs and postcards are courtesy of the Mauch and Roller families, Weil im Schönbuch, Germany.