For the first time aviation was widely used during the World War I. At first, aircrafts assisted exploring and taking pictures of enemy’s position and behind lines: fortifications, railway stations, bridges. It was also used for bombing enemy’s line. First fighter squadrons were developed for fighting hostile aircrafts. Most often these aircrafts were used during positional war between German and Franco-British armies on the Western front.
In the army of German Empire, enemy intelligence from the air was carried out by 14th aviation division of the I army corps. In 1918, pilot of this division, photographer sergeant Otto Liessmann made a photo album that reflects German aircraft combat during 1915 and 1918. There are 344 pictures in this album, made by Liessmann himself and his comrades. These pictures commemorate regions of the North of France, the North East of Italy, East Prussia and the Western part of Russian Empire (present day Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, the North West of Ukraine), also local residents, Russian war prisoners, German military machinery and ordnance, military troops and officers located on Eastern Front, cameras, aircrafts and airports used for aerial intelligence.
In 1918, the album got its way to Kretinga manor house, run by German military garrison. From November ,1918, these pictures were stored in the archives of Count Aleksandras Tiškevičius. In 1940 it was handed over to the museum of Kretinga, in 2014 digitized and displayed in the portal of Lithuanian Integral Museum Information system (www.limis.lt).