With A Small Gesture, A U.S. Army Supply Sergeant Reaches Out To A Young German Girl

In many contexts, it would simply look like a sweet photo. Pictured is U.S. Army Supply Sergeant Ralph Gordon and a young German girl, walking around barefoot. He’s offering her sticks of chewing gum following the German defeat and the beginning of the Allied occupation of Germany — a basic gesture caught at a historic moment.

The Allied occupation would last from 1945 until 1949, with the area being divided into four different administrations, under the control of the United States, United Kingdom, France, and the Soviet Union. The final settlement would not be agreed until 1990.


Army Supply Sergeant


Scheinfeld, Bavaria, Germany.

October 1945.

Credit: Anti-Worlds