A History Buff Has Been Live Tweeting WW2 For Five Years and It All Leads Up to Today


World War 2 was one of the most destructive conflicts in human history, causing over 73 million casualties throughout the entire war. Five years ago, history buff Alwyn Collinson decided to combine the historical relevance of the War with new age social media through a Twitter account he calls, “WW2 Tweets from 1944,” an effort to live tweet the entirety of World War 2 day by day. Today, the 72nd anniversary of D-Day, is an important milestone for his work, sending out images typically only seen in war movies to his 340K followers. The bio to Collinson’s Twitter feed reads, “Livetweeting the 2nd World War, as it happens on this date & time in 1944, & for 2 years to come,” reminding people of the sacrifice of the men and women who fought in that War.

Here are a few of the iconic images that Collinson has tweeted out today alone:

On June 6th 1944, 156,000 American, British and Canadian soldiers hit the beaches of Normandy for what was the largest naval invasion in human history. The Americans hit Omaha and Utah beaches under heavy artillery and gunfire from bunkers located on the bluffs, while the British and Canadians hit Juno, Gold and Sword beaches in force also under fire from the German army.

At the time that he created his project, Collinson told The Telegraph, “I’m hoping to use Twitter to help bring the past to life, helping people understand the past as people at the time saw it, without the benefit of hindsight. I want them to see that people then were just like they are.”

Some days over the five-year history of the project have naturally been busier than others, but that’s because as Collinson points out, his work directly mirrors the actual history. “The volume of tweets is definitely driven by events,” he said. “Materials that show what people at the time cared about, like newspaper reports, are all easily available online.”

For Collinson, the project has been personal; as The Telegraph wrote in 2011, the author’s grandfather was captured by the Japanese in February 1942.

D-Day, of course, was not the end of the war. The United States, Great Britain, and the rest of the Allies would continue to fight back the Germans and the Japanese in order to rid the world of tyranny. Collinson still has a lot of work ahead of him and he will continue to remember those who served their countries in the Second World War.

[images via Twitter]

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