WWII German Snapshot Photo – RAF Gravestones in Germany 1939 – 1st Australian Soldier Killed in Action

Today’s post comes from a loyal PortraitsofWar follower from the Netherlands.  He recently stumbled across a single snapshot at a Dutch flea market and did some savvy investigative work to tease out the historical significance.  Thanks Werner!

Wartime German Snapshot of the Graves

Begraafplaats Engelse Vliegeniers

By: Werner Peters

Here we have a photo taken by a German soldier depicting the graves of three Allied airmen who lost their lives in the skies over Germany.  These soldiers were likely recovered from their crashed plane and buried with full military honors by their German adversaries.  A Nazi laurel wreath can be seen in the left corner of the photo.

At the time, two of the airmen could be positively identified by the Germans; one body was unidentifiable.  One the left side of the burial plot lies Mr.Hammond whose RAF identification number was 562535RAF.  On the right side of the grave lies J. MCI. Cameron, Offr res 24225RAF.  The middle marker merely says , Engl. Flieger(English Airman).  On all three grave posts is written “Hier ruht ein Engl. Flieger – im luftkampf gefallen 28.9.1939 Vorden” – which translates as “here rests an English airman who died in aerial combat on 28.9.1939 Vorden(?)”.

With a little research it turns out that this crew belonged to the 110th RAF squadron.  They were flying a Bristol Blenheim type IV, number N6212 which crashed on September 28th, 1939 during a recon mission over Munster in the neighborhood of Kiel, Germany.  They were shot down by a German pilot named Klaus Faber, a feldwebel of the Ersten Abiteilung.  Jagdgeschwader Eins (1st Section of the 1st Fighter Group).

It turns out that the man buried on the right is wing commander Ivan McLoed Cameron, an Australian who, in fact, is the first Australian to die in action during WWII. The man to the left is Thomas Cecil Hammond, an Irishman.  The last grave belongs to Thomas Fullerton.

For more information regarding the crash, please check out the following website: http://ww2chat.com/biographies/5839-raf-australians-wing-commander-ivan-mcleod-cameron.html

After researching the photograph, Werner visited the current grave site in Kleve, Germany where the three men were reburied after the war.  He snapped some great photos and generously allowed for them to be posted here at PortraitsofWar.

Thanks Werner!

Reichswald Forest War Cemetery Gates

The Three Graves

Cameron's Headstone



388th Bomb Group – Visions of Wartime London – Summer 1944


Alva Alegre took every opportunity to shoot in and around London while on pass.  His images capture wartime London as seen in 1944, at a time when the Luftwaffe was still a real threat to the civilian population.  Please enjoy the view through Alva’s lens as he travels throughout the city of London!



Alva and Muse











The Royal Arcade



Close Up View of Sign

















WWI 12th Veterinarian Hospital RPPC Photo Pair in Treves Germany

Members of the 12th Veterinarian Hospital

Straight from the bowels of a poorly listed eBay auction comes this tantalizing pair of WWI photographs.  At first glance the images seem to contain little information to help aide in their historical dissection, but upon further sleuthing I found some clues to their identification.  After scanning the first image on my super-duper Epson V700 scanner (awesome BTW), I zoomed in on the wagon using Photoshop.  The name VET HOSP 12 can be faintly seen between the wagon wheels.  A quick google search yielded a website dedicated to the 12th Veterinarian Hospital, which dealt with the care of horses during the Occupation period.  I looks like the hospital was started in late December of 1918, and continued to service 3rd Army horses for the bulk of the Occupation.

The obverse of the second RPPC shows a date and location of January 1st 1919 in Treves Germany made out to a Mr.Arthur Fessler (hard to make out the last letter) in Philadelphia, PA.  The card is a German postcard paper, and the style of chair is one I see almost exclusively used in German portrait studios of the period.  The young doughboy is not wearing a shoulder sleeve insignia (aka Patch) but I assume he soon received one, as the first photo shows the patch in wear.

Interested in learning more about the 12th Veterinarian Hospital?  Check out this site:


Or check out the U.S. Army Veterinarian Corps  Historical Preservation Group Facebook page:


Posing in a German Studio