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WWI in Colour. Rare Autochrome Images of WWI (26 photos)

        

IMAGES: PAUL CASTELNAU/GALERIE BILDERWELT/GETTY IMAGES

Firefighters attempt to extinguish a fire started by the German bombing of Dunkirk, France.

Firefighters attempt to extinguish a fire started by the German bombing of Dunkirk, France, 1917

A girl holds a doll next to soldiers' equipment in Reims, France.

A girl holds a doll next to soldiers’ equipment in Reims, France, 1917

A French soldier peers out from a position on the Western Front in Alsace.

A French soldier peers out from a position on the Western Front in Alsace, 1917

A French soldier eats a loaf of bread in Reims, France.

A French soldier eats a loaf of bread in Reims, France, 1917

Soldiers look at the 45-meter-deep crater left by the detonation by the British of 21 tons of explosives underneath German positions near Messines in West Flanders.

Soldiers look at the 45-meter-deep crater left by the detonation by the British of 21 tons of explosives underneath German positions near Messines in West Flanders. One of the largest non-nuclear explosions in history, the blast killed 10,000 soldiers and was heard as far away as Dublin. 1917

French soldiers in Hirtzbach, Alsace.

French soldiers in Hirtzbach, Alsace, 1917

A French outpost near the front in Hirtzbach, Alsace.

A French outpost near the front in Hirtzbach, Alsace, 1917

A French officer inspects the barbed wire around French positions in Soissons.

A French officer inspects the barbed wire around French positions in Soissons, 1917

A news vendor in Reims, France.

A news vendor in Reims, France, 1917

A camp in Egypt of workers from the British Chinese Labour Corps recruited to participate in the Middle East campaign.

A camp in Egypt of workers from the British Chinese Labour Corps recruited to participate in the Middle East campaign, 1917

An Algerian guard on a bridge in Pommiers, France.

An Algerian guard on a bridge in Pommiers, France, 1917

French soldiers and horses in the cloister of the Abbey de Saint-Jean-des-Vignes in Soissons, which was heavily damaged by artillery fire.

French soldiers and horses in the cloister of the Abbey de Saint-Jean-des-Vignes in Soissons, which was heavily damaged by artillery fire, 1917

Doctors, nurses and medical personnel in front of field hospital 55 in Bourbourg, France.

Doctors, nurses and medical personnel in front of field hospital 55 in Bourbourg, France, 1917

French machine gunners set up a position amid ruins during the battle of the Aisne in France.

French machine gunners set up a position amid ruins during the battle of the Aisne in France, 1917

French soldiers camouflage a 370mm railway gun near the Western Front.

French soldiers camouflage a 370mm railway gun near the Western Front, 1917

French soldiers stand on a narrow-gauge railroad in an artillery-ravaged battleground in West Flanders.

French soldiers stand on a narrow-gauge railroad in an artillery-ravaged battleground in West Flanders, 1917

French soldiers read newspapers at a kiosk in Rexpoede, Calais.

French soldiers read newspapers at a kiosk in Rexpoede, Calais, 1917

French soldiers from Africa prepare a meal on the Western Front.

French soldiers from Africa prepare a meal on the Western Front, 1917

Wounded soldiers from the battlefield near Laffaux at Saint-Paul Hospital in Soissons, France.

Wounded soldiers from the battlefield near Laffaux at Saint-Paul Hospital in Soissons, France, 1917

French soldiers dig through the rubble of a destroyed building in Reims, France.

French soldiers dig through the rubble of a destroyed building in Reims, France, 1917

Senegalese Bambara soldiers serving with the French Army in Balschwiller, Alsace.

Senegalese Bambara soldiers serving with the French Army in Balschwiller, Alsace, 1917

French soldiers of the 370th Infantry Regiment eat soup during the battle of the Aisne.

French soldiers of the 370th Infantry Regiment eat soup during the battle of the Aisne, 1917

Senegalese soldiers serving in the French Army rest near the Western Front in Alsace.

Senegalese soldiers serving in the French Army rest near the Western Front in Alsace, 1917

A group of Swiss border guards behind a fence between Switzerland and France.

A group of Swiss border guards behind a fence between Switzerland and France, 1917

A worker from Indochina in Soissons, France

A worker from Indochina in Soissons, France, 1917

A French military cemetery on a hillside in the town of Moosch, Alsace.

A French military cemetery on a hillside in the town of Moosch, Alsace, 1917