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We Also Served (Paperback)

The Forgotten Women of the First World War

WWI Social History 1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 Women of History 20th Century

By Vivien Newman
Imprint: Pen & Sword History
Pages: 192
Illustrations: 30 black and white Illustrations
ISBN: 9781526796639
Published: 30th January 2021


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RRP £12.99

Author Interview

Click here to listen to author Vivien Newman talk to Paul Hawkins of Essex Radio about We Also Served

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We Also Served is a social history of women's involvement in the First World War. Dr Vivien Newman disturbs myths and preconceptions surrounding women's war work and seeks to inform contemporary readers of countless acts of derring-do, determination, and quiet heroism by British women, that went on behind the scenes from 1914-1918.

In August 1914 a mere 640 women had a clearly defined wartime role. Ignoring early War Office advice to 'go home and sit still', by 1918 hundreds of thousands of women from all corners of the world had lent their individual wills and collective strength to the Allied cause.

As well as becoming nurses, munitions workers, and members of the Land Army, women were also ambulance drivers and surgeons; they served with the Armed Forces; funded and managed their own hospitals within sight and sound of the guns. At least one British woman bore arms, and over a thousand women lost their lives as a direct result of their involvement with the war.

This book lets these all but forgotten women speak directly to us of their war, their lives, and their stories.

A historically very interesting book.

Read the complete Spanish review here.

José Manuél Rico Cortés (Mister JM) - Miniaturas JM

Referenced in 'further reading' part of article by Michelle Higgs on investigating the role of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, and how to trace their service documents

Your Family History, August 2017

As featured on Google

Google Books - Reviewer

"This book lets these all but forgotten women speak directly to us of their war, their lives, and their stories."

Read the full review here.

Goodreads reviewer

'We Also Served – The Forgotten Women of the First World War by Vivien Newman is a timely overview of experiences rescued from oblivion. Here are women once lost behind the filters of indifference or deliberate censorship, now made visible again through accessible scholarship and engaging writing.'

Read the full review here!

History Wardrobe

'There are far too many stories for me to do justice to here – you really need to read We Also Served for yourself. You won’t be disappointed. Newman encompasses not just women’s experience of war, but the human experience of war. Her writing is intuitive, informative and always absorbing; this is a book I will return to again and again.'

Read the full review here!

HandWrittenBy Blog

An interesting and enlightening book which corrects misconceptions of women's roles in the Great War.

Essex Family Historian No.159

As featured in

Epping Forest Guardian

'The Forgotten Women', well not any more!!.This fine account of the critical part played by women in Britain and with British forces during WWI goes a very long way to bringing forward the story of women at war. Highly Recommended... The author has comprehensively covered the ways in which women made a great difference during wartime. The text reads smoothly and debunks some of the myths. The photo plate section contains a range of images that compliment the text and add strongly to the content.


This is an attractive and well presented book which is an account of the social history of women’s involvement in WW1. It reminds us that in August 1914 over three quarter of a million men were serving in our armed forces but only 640 women ( in the military nursing services ). Over the next four years women’s involvement in the war effort mushroomed and significant numbers of them died as they served.
All in all a good introduction to an important piece of history which directly affected many of our families.

Federation of Family History Societies

Anyone interested in the role of women during WWI and indeed some more obscure facts about them would enjoy reading this, as well as those with a general interest in WWI.

Friends of the National Archives

An intelligent and accessible exploration of women's oft-forgotten roles in WWI.

Your Family Tree

This is a really excellent book covering women in the Great War... It is clear a lot of research went into the book and it puts women back on the WW1 map.

WW1 Centenary

This is a social history of women's involvement in the First World War and is drawn from the writings of hundreds of women which give contemporary insights into many aspects of women's lives during this time of conflict and historic changes.

Bristol and Avon Family History Society

As seen in.

Kent Family History Society Journal

A compact overview of women's service during the First World War.

Paul Nixon

A fascinating read!


So many books published about World War 1 focus on trench warfare and the soldiers who battled. But many other groups, while not experiencing the horrors of the front, fought their own war and one such group is remembered in this book. Vivien Newman brings to life the women of the war and the work they did, providing us with a comprehensive social history that is very valuable.

Essex Life Magazine

This book lets these all-but-forgotten women speak directly to us of their war, their lives and experiences.

Southern Daily Echo

As featured in the Braintree & Witham Times.

Braintree & Witham Times

It is very rare to read a story about the First World War that doesn't focus on the atrocities suffered by men on the battlefield, but one woman wants to change that by revealing the untold story of the war's women.

Essex Chronicle

This book lets all-but-forgotten women speak directly to us of their war, their lives and their experiences.

Chelmsford Weekly News

...a touching book about the women who served in the First World War.

Maldon and Burnham Standard

As featured on This is Local London website.

This is Local London
 Vivien Newman

About Vivien Newman

Dr Vivien Newman, an expert on women's experiences during the First World War, works at the University of Essex. Dr Newman is also working on a collection of women's First World War poetry and a book on children's experiences during the conflict, both due to be published by Pen and Sword. She is a regular speaker at national conferences and for groups including the Womens Institute and the Western Front Association.

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