Photos Colour and Colourised Photos of WW2 & earlier conflicts

"Soldier, would you mind standing up? I'd like to take your picture" Robert Capa said to me.
"It was the last good picture of my right leg"
(James Conboy Jr.)
This is James Conboy Jr of Philadelphia PA, 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 17th Airborne Division, just before heading towards Germany during Operation Varsity, wearing a 'Cheyenne Warlock' haircut as they had a Cheyenne native Indian trooper in their unit, saturday March 24, 1945.

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On this day Jim Conboy participated in Operation Varsity. He was only 19 years old when he made the jump near the Rhine River, northeast of Wessel, Germany. After the jump, however, a 20mm shell hit him in the right leg, shattering it. His leg was amputated, for which he received a Purple Heart. 17.000 men parachuted into the Rhine Valley that day, more than a third died there.
War photographer Robert Capa's shot of Mr. Conboy, taken just before boarding the plane that took him to Germany, was featured in a 1945 Life magazine photo essay and picked up by media around the world. Mr. Conboy appeared in a 2003 PBS documentary, Robert Capa: In Love and War.
Conboy was awarded a Purple Heart and also a Bronze Star for his courage in combat.
He passed on January 29, 2004. He was 78 years old.
Colour and restoration by Jake

Photo: Robert Capa
 
Operation Varsity' - Wesel, Germany - March 24, 1945

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Injured US Paratroopers get treatment from members of the Army's Medical Corps.
The essential task of the XVIII US Airborne Corps was to seize the Diersfordterwald, a wooded ridge which overlooked the crossing places. The 6th and 17th Airborne Divisions were to land either side of this and deny its use to the enemy, thereby enabling the relieving ground forces to make swift progress beyond the Rhine.
The plans called for the dropping of two divisions from U.S. XVIII Airborne Corps, under Major General Matthew B. Ridgway, to capture key territory and to generally disrupt German defenses to aid the advance of Allied ground forces. The British 6th Airborne Division was ordered to capture the villages of Schnappenberg and Hamminkeln, clear part of the Diersfordter Wald (Diersfordt Forest) of German forces, and secure three bridges over the River Issel.
The U.S. 17th Airborne Division was to capture the village of Diersfordt and clear the rest of the Diersfordter Wald of any remaining German forces. The two divisions would hold the territory they had captured until relieved by advancing units of 21st Army Group, and then join in the general advance into northern Germany. (Wiki)
(Colourised by Royston Leonard)
 
Crossing the Rhine 24 - 31 March 1945. (Operation Plunder)
British Commandos of the 1st Commando Brigade man two Vickers machine guns in the shattered outskirts of Wesel.
The 1st Commandos had formed the spearhead of the British assault by making a surprise crossing in assault craft on the night of 23-24 March under a barrage of 1500 guns.




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photosource © IWM ( BU 2329)
photographer- Norris (Sgt)
No.5 Army Film & Photo Section
Colourised by Paul Reynolds
 
A Matilda tank of 'B' Squadron,2/4th Australian Armoured Regiment,with supporting Infantry moving along the Buin road, South of the Hongorai River during mopping-up operations on Bougainville in the South Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea 1945.

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Photosource-© IWM (HU 69099)
Photographer-Australian official Photographer

Colourised by Joshua Barrett
 
Color-guard of the 7th Illinois Volunteer Infantry with their mascot "Jefferson Davis".

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The 7th was the largest Regiment to purchase its own Henry rifles paying $ 52.00 each for 500 of them( monthly salary per soldier $ 13.00) in 1864.
One of the most coveted weapons of the war
The Henry repeating rifle held 15 x .44 Rimfire rounds in its tubular magazine(plus one in chamber) which led Confederates to call it;
" That damn Yankee rifle that can be loaded
On a Sunday and fired all week".

Photosource-Illinois State Historical Library.
Photographer-unknown(unnamed Mathew Brady Assistant)

Colourised by Luke Young( Georgia, USA)
 
Color-guard of the 7th Illinois Volunteer Infantry with their mascot "Jefferson Davis".

View attachment 287533
The 7th was the largest Regiment to purchase its own Henry rifles paying $ 52.00 each for 500 of them( monthly salary per soldier $ 13.00) in 1864.
One of the most coveted weapons of the war
The Henry repeating rifle held 15 x .44 Rimfire rounds in its tubular magazine(plus one in chamber) which led Confederates to call it;
" That damn Yankee rifle that can be loaded
On a Sunday and fired all week".

Photosource-Illinois State Historical Library.
Photographer-unknown(unnamed Mathew Brady Assistant)

Colourised by Luke Young( Georgia, USA)
Wow, great pic and story.
 
On the evening of March 25th, 1944, with the Third Battle of Cassino over, two British correspondents from the AFPU (Army Film and Photo Unit) entered the ruined town under the cover of darkness.
Accompanying them were the men of C Company, 25th New Zealand Battalion, on their way back to the northern sector of Cassino after a two-day rotation in reserve.
The AFPU team, composed by photographer Lt. Richard Gade and cameraman Sgt J. Jessiman, spent the next 48 hours with C Company, concentrating on the activities of its no.13 Platoon.
Although shot 3 days after the offensive had been called off, their photos and cine footage represent the most authentic images of the third Battle collected by the Allied side.
In this photo, Corporal Allan Bartlett, one of the Battalion snipers, scans the ruins through the scope of his Lee-Enfield No.4 MkI (T). On one of his dope sheets, Sgt Jessiman wrote:
“Nobody moves during the day for to move even from one building to another is to invite death from a sniper’s bullet or a mortar shell…”
Every time he was questioned about the number of enemy soldiers he had killed, Corporal Bartlett simply replied: “Several…”

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Colour by Rui @incoloreveritas
Original: IWM (NA 13384)
 
Soldiers in dressed in their 'Hospital Blues' convalescing in Morden Hall Park, South London. circa 1916.

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They may well have been Somme victims.
The Hall was a military hospital during the First World War.
(Colourised by Bob Hossack from the UK)
 
Polish Navy Air Force Lublin R.VIII floatplane, 1939

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The R-VIII floatplanes were used by the Polish Naval Aviation Squadron in Puck from 1933, in a long reconnaissance escadre. From 1938, they were assigned to training, and were scheduled for withdrawal from service. They survived until the Invasion of Poland in 1939. After the first German air raid on naval aviation base in Puck on September 1st, all floatplanes were evacuated from Puck to the Hel Peninsula. They were anchored on Puck Bay by Chalupy on Hel Peninsula, near the base of the peninsula, where they were bombed by Stukas on September 8.
 
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Lt. Ray Gaiger has his hand dressed by a medic of the 7th Bn. Hampshire Regiment in Hengelo, Netherlands on April 3 1945.

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Gaiger had joined the Sherwood Rangers in December 1944 and only two months previously had smashed his troop through the defenses at Kleve and fought his way to the centre of that town. Entering Hengelo on Tuesday April 3 1945 his tank was hit three times by Panzerfausts. The crew managed to escape with only Gaiger wounding his hand.

Tpr, Hugh McDonald, shaken but unperturbed, was in the tank behind Gaigers. Seen here, having a nice cup of tea in a china cup, given to him by a nice Dutch lady who also offered to wash his tanksuit when he bailed from his tank into a water filled ditch outside her house, when his tank was attacked by Panzerfausts during the liberation of Hengelo on 3 April 1945.
One can imagine the scene of the 6'1'' tall barrel chested Glaswegian being ordered to strip off his clothes by the newly liberated Dutch housewife while the kettle boiled! In reality, Hugh McDonald was a professional Scottish Heavyweight Boxer.
His first bout was in 1943, he then joined the Sherwood Rangers, fought throughout the campaign in Europe, surviving several knocked out tanks, then returned to boxing from 1946 till 1955 competing in 24 professional fights.
(Collection: Nationaal Archief)
 
Officers of 1/7th Battalion, King's Liverpool Regiment checking a map in trenches on the La Bassée Canal sector, 28 February 1918.

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(Photo source - © IWM Q 10740)
Aitken, Thomas Keith (Second Lieutenant) (Photographer)
 
Italian Alpini Artillery Officers and a Military chaplain in the WW1 Ossuary of Nervesa della Battaglia ( Treviso, Northern Italy).
Most of them are veterans from the Abyssinian Campaign.
Photo Taken in 1938 by Zaccaria dal Sacco

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Image provivied by the Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali - MiBAC
 
An Ethiopian Patriot Soldier, 1941

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After fighting two wars against Italy in 1895 and 1935, the Ethiopian Empire came under Italian occupation from 1937. Emperor Haile Selassie went into exile in the United Kingdom until 1941, returning to lead resistance efforts following the success of British Imperial forces in the East Africa campaigns.
Haile Selassie and his patriot soldiers would effectively retake control of the country by November that year, although guerilla efforts by the Italians persisted until 1943
 
This photo shows Soviet soldiers displaying their weapon to an American T/3 of the First Infantry Division.

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By the end of the war, many Soviet troops were equipped with the PPSh41 machine pistol, which was easy to produce and very polyvalent. After the victory of 1945 the Allied and Soviet troops had more time to get to know each other, as this picture shows. Note that in the background a Russian soldier has a German shovel.
 

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