1945 Armistice

Schietpartij op de Dam / Shooting at Dam square Amsterdam
On the 8th. of May World War II came to an end; photo by the Nationaal Archief in the Netherlands; photo: “World War II. Liberation day (1945). The National Dutch Archive comments: “People seeking shelter behind lamp-posts at Dam square Amsterdam after German troops opened fire at the celebrating masses (22 killed, 120 injured).” [comment by Nationaal Archief] Schietpartij op de Dam / Shooting at Dam square Amsterdam Originally uploaded by Nationaal Archief / http://www.spaarnestadphoto.nl/
Ralph Crane, photographer, MAGNUM, TIME / LIFE

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17 responses to “1945 Armistice

  1. It's a matter of prayer

    I am moved every time I view this photo. The thing that catches my eye is the small child who seems to be wondering off into the line of fire. None of those hiding see her. It is the children who seem to suffer the most.


  2. SO powerful…
    absolutely haunting…


  3. I still find this photo disturbing every time I see it. :-(


  4. Oh, Frizz, I remember celebrating Armistice Day in my elementary school days! How soon we forget! And if I ever knew German troops fired on , and killed, some of the celebrating masses of people, I had forgotten! Very worthy of you to remind us here!


  5. A contradiction in terms but Happy VE Day. That it cost so much . . . .


  6. This child reminds me of another child – in Schindlers List; in the Black and White opening scenes, there is a girl child in a red coat, running away. A little later, after the Germans opened fire on the people they forced outside, there is a pile of bodies – and a dead girl child in a red coat.
    Stunning – in many more ways than one!


  7. Amazing picture. Lest we forget.


  8. You changed a template of Word press. Nice. :)


  9. So cruel! Humans are the cruelest beings as far as I know.


    • more about this situation at
      Jo Hedwig Teeuwisse writes there:
      “In ‘The Big Club’ members of the Kriegsmarine watched as the crowd below their balcony grew and grew, people danced and cheered.
      Then for some sort of reason the Germans placed a machinegun on the balcony and started shooting into the crowds.
      It has always remained uncertain why it happened but the sad result was that at the brink of peace 120 people were badly injured and 22 died.
      The shooting finally came to an end after a member of the resistance climbed into the tower of the royal palace and started shooting onto the balcony and into the club…”


  10. Amazing. This picture just grabs your attention and then you see the little child. Heart-wrenching.


  11. Interesting photo, what happened with the child on the left of the lamp-posts


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