Over There by Norman Rockwell
January 31, 1918 Issue of Life Magazine
Over There, this Norman Rockwell painting, appeared on the cover of Life Magazine published January 31, 1918.
An alternate title for this picture is Soldiers Singing by the Campfire.
This was the fifth cover by Rockwell to appear on Life Magazine. A Rockwell illustration appeared on the Life magazine cover ten times in 1918 and twenty-eight times in all.
This particular painting also appeared later in 1918 on the cover of the sheet music for George M. Cohan's famous and well-loved song of the same name, Over There.
Among his other admirable traits, Norman Rockwell was very patriotic. His subject matter during the First World War is evidence of that fact.
Here is the complete list of all Norman Rockwell magazine covers.
Here we see four American soldiers, infantrymen, in harm's way in a foreign country. They all appear to be young men. Completely seperated from the tents in the background, they all appear to be having a wonderful time.
These four doughboys are spending this night sitting beside a roaring fire. They are singing. One is playing a small banjo called a banjo-ukelele.
We can't be absolutely certain whether they are singing Cohan's stirring patriotic song or some other favorite of the day. Either way, they certainly look animated and excited in their performance. Rockwell was a master at conveying just such complex emotions in his paintings.
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