Collection a1130 - Images from the WW1 period preserved in Italy

Identity area

Reference code

IT a1130


Images from the WW1 period preserved in Italy


  • 1914 - 1918 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

Digital copies of circa 1720 items: photographs, postcards, drawings, illustrations and posters.

Context area

Name of creator

Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo Unico

Biographical history

The Central Institute for the Union Catalogue of Italian Libraries and Bibliographic Information took on the current denomination in 1975 following the constitution of The Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities, formerly the Ministry for Cultural and Environmental Heritage. The National Centre for the Union Catalogue was created in 1951 with the task of cataloguing the entire national bibliographic heritage.
This objective is pursued due to a considerable collaboration strategy among Italian libraries even coming under varied administrations. This ensures the development of services on the same level throughout the entire nation. Resulting from this collaboration is the establishment of the National Library Service. This national on-line service network, to which the state, local institutions, and university libraries is connected, contribute to the founding of the national collective on-line catalogue which is managed by the Institute.
The Institute, whose reference point is the General Direction for Library Heritage, Cultural Institutes and Copyright, carries out coordination functions with due respect to library autonomy in the field of National Library Service as well as cataloguing projects accomplished through the use of new information technology. ICCU acts as coordinator of the National Library Service (SBN) and of the digitalization projects produced by using metadata standards and related to the project Italian Digital Library (BDI).

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

This Digital Collection gathers the most important collections of picture materials from the WW1 period preserved by some of the Italian Libraries. The Collection includes 130 albums and 480 pictures. The albums are mostly created by Italian and foreign military institutions. The incredible historical photographs represent the Italian trench warfare, the reality of war as well as the italian cities during the conflict. 946 Italian posters such as recruitment posters, posters aimed to convince civilians to join one side or the other one, posters by Red Cross, posters by aviation, army posters, war bond posters and victory posters, among which are American posters and polemical posters about the dividing up of territories. In addition, the Collection offers a small (3 items) but significant historical overview on Italian picture postcards. Finally, there are 229 Italian satirical and advertising drawings, 17 illustrated calendars with the images of the Italian army, of the war events and with the National Anthems of the Allies.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Freely available online.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

  • Austrian German
  • English
  • French
  • Italian

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

14-18 Documenti e immagini della Grande Guerra

Europeana Collections 1914-1918

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Central Institute for the Union Catalogue of Italian Libraries (ICCU) coordinates the Italian WW1 digital collections owned by Biblioteca Universitaria Alessandrina, Biblioteca di Storia Moderna a Contemporanea, and Istituto per la Storia del Risorgimento Italiano.

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

This Collection comprises 7 sub-collections:
"Military albums from the First World War period"
"Historical Photographs of the Italian trench warfare and the Italian cities during the WW1"
"Italian postcards from the WW1 period"
"Italian satirical and advertising drawings from the WW1 period"
"Italian posters from the First World War period"
"Calendars from the First World War period"

Related descriptions

Notes area


The materials have been digitized within the context of the Europeana Collections 1914-1918

Alternative identifier(s)

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Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used



Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion



  • English



Digital object metadata

Digital object (External URI) rights area

Accession area