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WAAC's in France find German helmets useful substitutes for market bags | by National Library of Scotland
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WAAC's in France find German helmets useful substitutes for market bags

Two members of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, France, during World War I. The two women in this image seem happy and relaxed. They are laughing and joking with each other and seem to share a good rapport with each other. Although their uniforms appear to be similar, war-time shortages are apparent in the different buttons, belts, coat styles and accessories. The women have used upturned enemy helmets as baskets. This sort of resourcefulness and camaraderie are now legendary features of the war experience.

 

'W.A.A.C' stands for the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps. An American W.A.A.C. nurse, Helen Fairchild, found the uniforms to be cumbersome, heavy and unflattering but eventually commented in a letter home, 'but we have learned the wisdom of it now [wearing a uniform], for it gives protection, and everywhere we go they leave [let] us in without charges'.

 

[Original reads: 'OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPH TAKEN ON THE BRITISH WESTERN FRONT IN FRANCE. W.A.A.C.s in France find German helmets useful substitutes for market bags.']

 

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Taken circa 1918