The year was 1914. This date marked the end of a golden age in France that we now know as “La Belle Epoque,” and the start of the first World War. La Belle Epoque was a period of peace that began in the 1870s and continued for four decades. Without the distractions and deprivations of war, it allowed space for creative thinking, and during this time the arts and sciences flourished.
Then on 28 July, war broke out in Europe, and nothing was ever the same again.
Can you imagine what Paris might have looked like at such a significant turning-point in history? Well there’s no need to imagine, thanks to a beautiful and ever-growing collection of archived photographs and illustrations from a blog called Paris 1914. It’s my new go-to destination for a spot of nostalgic and sometimes surprising time-travel.
Naomi Bulger (messages in bottles)