Step into Your Place
Until March 2, 1916, when the Military Service Act introduced conscription, Great Britain’s World War I army was comprised entirely of volunteers. Many of the most famous wartime posters were recruitment appeals. This 1915 poster, published in London for the Parliamentary Recruiting Committee, shows a column of soldiers marching into the distance, while being joined in the foreground by men in civilian attire representing a variety of occupations and social classes. The Parliamentary Recruiting Committee was set up following the outbreak of war in August 1914. It was a cross-party organization chaired by the prime minister, Herbert Asquith, and it used the infrastructure of the British political parties in parliamentary districts to support recruitment for the armed forces. Party activists were called upon to distribute leaflets and organize rallies, processions, and public meetings. The committee commissioned some 200 posters, which were mostly published before the introduction of conscription. This poster, by an unknown artist, is number 104 in the series.
Parliamentary Recruiting Committee, London
Type of Item
1 print (poster) : lithograph, color ; 50 x 76 centimeters
- Roy Douglas, “Voluntary Enlistment in the First World War and the Work of the Parliamentary Recruiting Committee,” Journal of Modern History 42, number 4 (December 1970).
Last updated: February 10, 2014