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July 8, 2017

Found in the National Geographic’s Archives, Here Are Some Rarely Seen Photos From World War II

U.S. Army soldiers make an amphibious landing on the banks of Germany’s Rhine River. Navy sailors take a break from combat for a dip in the Pacific Ocean. A young marine cleans sand out of his shoe. These World War II–era images are part of a small collection of photographs on display in the basement of National Geographic’s headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Tucked away among the 11.5 million photographic items housed in the National Geographic archive, the images were among those recently pulled from storage by National Geographic’s staff in homage to the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, marked earlier in 2015.

Bringing them out of the archive provides an insight into the lives and mentalities of the past. They tell a story we don’t want to forget.

Two U.S. soldiers look over the ruins surrounding the Cologne Cathedral. 1945.

Crouching low in a DUKW for concealment and protection, men of the 89th division, U.S. Third Army, cross the Rhine River at Oberwesel, Germany. March 26, 1945. (Photograph by the U.S. Department of Defense)

These are the first pictures to be taken at Aldwych Shelter, the stretch of underground railway between Aldwych and Holborn which has been taken out of service to provide safe shelter for Londoners in air raids. Photograph shows the railway lines as well as the platforms provide a dormitory for Londoners during the night raids. October 5, 1940. (Photograph by Acme Newspictures)

Marines hit three feet of rough water as they leave their LST to take the beach at Cape Gloucester, December 26, 1943. (Photograph by the U.S. Marine Corps)

Crewmen of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier banish post-battle nervous strain by taking a swim in the warm waters of a lagoon in the Marshalls only a few days after laying siege to and conquering Roi Island in the Kwajalein atoll. Released April 18, 1944. (Photograph by the U.S. Navy)

French mademoiselle waves tricolor in tribute to the forces which liberated her city as they march past Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France. August 26, 1944. (Photograph by the U.S. Marine Corps)

The bombing of this beautiful Roman Catholic Church in London did not stop Fusilier Tom Dowling and Miss Martha Coogan being married there today. After the ceremony was over, Father Finn, who performed the ceremony, assisted the bridal couple over the debris to the church exit. Fox. September 14, 1940.

A fighting Coast Guardsman, who gave his right arm in battle pays Memorial Day tribute at the Lincoln shrine in Washington, D.C. He is Coast Guardsman Thomas Sortino of Chicago, who participated in the North African invasion. (Photograph by U.S. Coast Guard)

Women employees working on the nose assemblies of Douglas “Havoc” A-20 attack bombers. (Photograph by the Douglas Aircraft Company, Inc.)

Of all things, Marine Private First Class Raymond L. Hubert, of Detroit, Michigan, chooses a huge unexploded naval shell for a sofa as he removes a three day accumulation of Saipan sand from his field shoes. (Photograph by Staff Sgt. Andrew B. Knight, U.S. Marine Corps)



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