Propaganda Posters - Introduction

At the Front! Enlist Now Each of the nations which participated in World War One from 1914-18 used propaganda posters not only as a means of justifying involvement to their own populace, but also as a means of procuring men, money and resources to sustain the military campaign.

In countries such as Britain the use of propaganda posters was readily understandable: in 1914 she only possessed a professional army and did not have in place a policy of national service, as was standard in other major nations such as France and Germany.

Yet while the use of posters proved initially successful in Britain the numbers required for active service at the Front were such as to ultimately require the introduction of conscription.  Nevertheless recruitment posters remained in use for the duration of the war - as was indeed the case in most other countries including France, Germany and Italy.

However wartime posters were not solely used to recruit men to the military cause.  Posters commonly urged wartime thrift, and were vocal in seeking funds from the general public via subscription to various war bond schemes (usually with great success).

Interestingly, for all that the U.S.A. joined the war relatively late - April 1917 - she produced many more propaganda posters than any other single nation.

The sidebar to the right contains details of propaganda posters currently available.

The German word "U-Boat" was derived from "Unterseeboot" (undersea boat).

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