Note: This object includes a derogatory depiction of a First Nations person and other cultural stereotypes. Such depictions are not condoned by Museums Victoria which considers them to be racist. Historical distance and context do not excuse or erase this fact.

Cigarette card collector's book titled Der Weltkrieg (The World War) compiled in Germany 1937 as a commemoration of World War I. It features 270 full-colour cigarette cards illustrating significant German battles and events. The scrapbook was issued by Cigaretten-Bilderdienst Dresden.

This scrapbook captures the German perspective of World War I in pictures and writing. Themes such as nationalism, armed forces, everyday life during the war and stereotypical images of the enemy forces are referenced by the visual iconography. Through the chapters the progression of the war is illustrated. The individual sections are organised around each year of the war, 1914-18. The introduction to each chapter lists the different theatres and progression of the war. This summary is followed by sections, which under individual headings like 'Reason and Start of War', display cigarette cards and a short description of the image on that card. The first chapter also features a map of Belgium, France, Germany and parts of Switzerland in 1914 with the German armies and their campaigns. The appendix features cards depicting life behind the front line, the war in the colonies, and Germany's enemies. While the cigarette cards are in colour, the chapters are predominantly printed in sepia. The exception are maps of the East and West front, and the battles in Italy, Serbia and the Orient, which took place in 1915.

Of particular note, under the heading 'Our Eneny in the War' on page 70, is an image titled 'Uustralischer [Australischer] Ureinwohner' - Australian Aboriginal - the only Australian soldier shown in the album. Depicted without a hat or mark of rank, and with dishevelled hair (unlike most other soldiers depicted in the album), the image is likely to have been intended as derogatory.

Physical Description

Paper and cardboard scrapbook. Red coloured card cover shows a colour image of a map of Europe from the early 20th century. Back cover depicts a colour image of the world map at the time of the First World War, 1914-1918. Printed throughout in predominantly black ink.


This scrapbook for cigarette cards from the 1930s provides an invaluable pictorial record of World War I. It captures the German perspective of the War in picture and writing and functions as a reference book for multiple generations. Themes such as nationalism, everyday life during the war and (stereotypical) images of other nationals are also referenced by the visual iconography. The war theme of these albums was especially prominent in the 1930s and was later on used for propaganda purposes by the Nazis until the production of scrapbooks stops, due to the Second World War, in the early/mid 1940s.

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