About us

Visual media such as photographs, drawings, posters and films keep the memory of the Second World War alive. The complete collections of the Dutch war and resistance museums, commemoration centers, and the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies have been entered into this digitized databank and are now accessible to the public online. These organizations cooperate in the realization, description, and disclosure of a professional selection of digitalized image material related to the Kingdom of the Netherlands before, during and after the Second World War, and in making these available to the public via the internet. The Image Bank WW2 is overseen, on behalf of the others, by NIOD and has been realized in cooperation with the Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport’s War Heritage Program. The Image Bank works closely with the Network Oorlogsbronnen.

The collection comprises primarily photo material produced in the Netherlands, the former Dutch Indies, Surinam and the Netherlands Antilles, the warring and occupied countries, and on the various fronts. The various types of photography are comprehensively represented: press photos, propaganda photos, and the important collection of amateur and illegally-shot photos. In addition to the photographs, the Image Bank WW2 has an extensive collection of posters and drawings and a collection of film material. The database is in development and is continually added to. The organizations involved receive new, important acquisitions daily. People are working constantly to digitize these and provide descriptions and metadata for them.

Users can search through and look at the 150,000+ images for free. These can be downloaded free of charge for personal use. If the image quality is not sufficient or must meet higher standards, a new, higher-resolution scan of the original image can be requested from the Image Bank WW2. Please note that there are charges attached to this.

Images may not be published, in any form, without permission. For use in publication, a copyright or usage fee can be applied. Image material to which third-party copyright applies cannot be downloaded. For more information about this, please click on Image Rights.


The Image Bank WW2 is always very interested in receiving additional information about the images. The visitor is our information center. If you can provide details about any image, we will be very grateful, for example if you recognize someone in a photo, or if you know where the photo was taken. Beside the image you will see how to send us information.

Throw nothing away!

Your own photos and films from the War years can be added to the Image Bank WW2 in digital format! Photos are often more important than you might initially think. Contact us!

Image research

The Image Bank WW2 will be glad to help you find the image you are looking for. Thanks to many years of experience and in-depth knowledge of the image collections in the Netherlands and elsewhere, our experts can provide professional advice and can assist in the preparation of the search terms for as wide or specific a return possible.