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German History in Documents and Images
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War Bonds (1917)
The German war effort was financed primarily through war bonds, which were issued biannually throughout the war. A widespread, vocal public campaign that made use of the Germans' patriotic mood accompanied each subscription period. The poster below, designed by Fritz Erler, advertises the sixth war bond campaign from 1917; it reads: “Help us to triumph! Buy War Bonds!” Germans of all classes, even those of modest means, poured their savings into war bonds. However, progressive inflation led to depreciation of the bonds' value and thereby to the impoverishment of millions of investors after the war.