Collection of Kodachrome photos shows World War II in vibrant color
posted Monday, July 1, 2013 at 11:59 AM EST
When we think about World War II, our interpretation of history is invariably altered by the fact that almost all the images we have from that time are black and white. Without the vibrancy of color, history feels that much further away from the world as we know it. But there was color photography from this time period, and while it wasn't as widespread, or as easy to use, as black-and-white, there's still an incredible color record of the war.
The website Shorpy has assembled a collection of large-format Kodachrome transparencies from WWII. These were part of a collection shot for the Farm Security Administration (FSA) and later the Office of War Information (OWI) between 1939 and 1944, which gathered 1600 color photos from the USA (including Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands).
The photos originally focused on agricultural life in the USA, but later shifted focus to the WWII mobilization effort. The images of training and construction show the face of a nation gearing for, and then fighting, a war.