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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • AUSTRALIA: GREAT BARRIER CORAL REEF

Fronta Italie

Fronta Italie

This is a mysterious picture we found in my wife's family photos. The prone figure feeding the belt is marked with 2 small x's and is labeled "Franizcek", so he's probably the relative. The image is a photographic postcard (not lithographed) labeled on the reverse "Fronta Italie" and postmarked "K.u.K. Luftfahrtruppen Fliegerkompagnie Nr.22" I assume from the K.u.K. that this is the Austro- Hungarian army (or some other army where it was OK to point a rifle at your weapons instructor's head). But does Luftfahrtruppen and Fliegerkompagnie mean that this was an aviation unit? The machine gun mount looks odd, as if it is just a pipe on a stand, instead of a tripod. Is it an aircraft machine gun adapted for training purposes? Let's see those Shorpy experts go to work!

Fronta Italie

The K. u. K Luftfahrtruppen is the abbreviation for Kaiserliche und Königliche Luftfahrtruppen which was the Imperial and Royal Aviation Troops.

The weapon is an Austrian Schwarzlose MG M.07/12. According to Wikipedia, it was used both by ground troops and on aircraft. Most often it was deployed on a tripod and less frequently on a backpack mount which is shown here.

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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