Using online resources

Running a Community Collection usually means that material is collected in digital form to be use in some way. The material may form part of an archive, be used for research, be turned into educational material or much more. To mark the Remembrance season, this page lists some examples of how material that we have collected through our First World War projects is being used. Some examples of related resources are also included. Explore the links and get inspired to do something with digital material today.

Online archives

Explore the archives or share your own material.

  • Great War Archive (
    Our first community collection (closed for new additions). An online archive with material contributed by members of the public. Part of First World War Poetry Digital Archive ( which contains material by and about the war poets, including manuscripts, letters, pictures and more.
  • Europeana 1914-1918 (
    A very large international online archive containing stories and objects shared by the public, material from archives and libraries and links to additional resources.
  • Oxford at War (
    A new and growing collection of material related to Oxford during the period of the First World War.

Look for information about someone

If you are sharing a personal or family story through a community collection, you may also be interested in seeing what information about that person already exists online. You may also be able to  add your additional information to expand what is already available.

  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission (
    Find war dead. Search by name, date, regiment and more. Find information about person, their service number and where they are buried.  Sometimes additional information is available.
    – Enter information (only one term is needed) and press ‘Search’
    – Explore the result. You can sort the table by clicking on, for example, ‘Date of death’ or ‘Regiment/service’.
    – Click on the name to see more details.
  • Lives of the First World War (
    Find people who were involved in the war, add more information.
    – Type in name and service no (if known. Can be found through Commonwealth War Graves Commission for those who died)
    – See what is available (more information about how to use the site, add material and more can be found on the site)
  • Oxford Roll of Services (
    Listing all University members who served.
  • Wikipedia
    A lot of information about people, places and events. See, for example:
    – An image gallery of noteworthy people from Southern England who fought in World War I. Use the mouse wheel to move through the gallery. Clicking on some images will show a larger version.
     – A list of noteworthy people, born in Oxfordshire or adjacent counties, who took part in World War I but for whom there doesn’t seem to be a (freely reusable) photograph. Click the links on the right to read Wikipedia biographies of each solider. If you know of a photograph of any of these people, please email

Contribute to research

Having large archives of material is very useful for researchers and others interested in a topic. The material can be made more easily accessible, however, with the help of human input. A number of projects ask people to, for example, transcribe hand-written documents to make it easier to find relevant passages and identify key information. Examples include:

  • Europeana Transcribe:
    View images from the Europeana archive and type in the text that you can see. Choose the language and type of document that you want to see.
  • Measuring the ANZACs:
    Transcribe first-hand accounts of New Zealanders from the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps circa World War I.
  • Operation War Diary
    Annotate and transcribe war diaries from the First World War

Educational resources

Primary resources can be a very powerful resource for learning and teaching. Here are some examples of online educational resources that draw on material from community collections

  • First World War Poetry Digital Archive (
    Tutorials, films and timelines to help you learn more about First World War poetry and related topics.
  • World War One Centenary: Continuations and beginnings (
    Short articles, audio and video recordings and an extensive Resource Library providing links to freely available, open resources from across the world.

Online exhibitions

Here are a few examples how material form an archive (Europeana 1914-1918) has been used to create an online exhibition.

Films and podcasts


  • Children of the Great War
    A unique split screen film installation focusing on 13 of the participants who shared their family history from The Great War. The installation toured galleries, museums, and community centres, after its premiere at BFI Southbank. Created by AgeExchange
  • “Meeting in No Man’s Land”
    Feature-length film created by AgeExchange as part of their project where German and British elders exchange family histories from The First World War.

Films from the period of the First World War

The European Film Gateway has digitised a large collection of films and newsreels from the period of the War. To see all the material, explore the EFG 1914 project site. Some examples:

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