Trench medicine: Illnesses, injuries and their treatment

School children examining a First World War field dressing
Explore artefacts and sources on the causes and treatment of injuries and illnesses on the Western Front during the First World War, and assess the impact of these innovations.

How were injuries and illnesses treated in the First World War?

Learners will investigate the changing nature of injuries and illnesses typical in the trenches, from their causes and the mechanisation of warfare, to the different roles of the people helping and the innovations in medicine. Using our extensive handling collection of artefacts, learners can understand the impact of warfare on the Western Front on soldiers' welfare.

This unique workshop provides learners with the opportunity to analyse sources with healthy scepticism and a critical eye, and to use primary evidence to construct and present a convincing historical argument to peers.

This session is 60 minutes long.

The session includes:

  • Handling objects (including weaponry)
  • Archival materials¬†
  • Historic images
  • Group presentation
  • Group working and curation task
  • Peer-to-peer learning¬†
  • Gallery visit and related trails (optional)

Curriculum areas:

  • History

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"First time @NAM_London today. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Thought the presentation & interpretation made the subject accessible..."