These images are part of the book Weird War Two, a book from the Imperial War Museums that explores the stranger side of the Second World War. A war as extensive and long-lasting as World War II produces an incalculable number of artifacts. And museums as big and well-stocked as the Imperial War Museums have plenty of the ones you’d expect to find: tanks, jets, helmets, guns, and the like. But there was a whole lot more to the war—and a surprising amount of it is, well, downright weird.
Weird War Two pulls the strangest items from deep within the IWM’s archives to offer a surprising new, wildly entertaining angle on the war. From wacky inventions such as flying jeeps and bat bombs to elusive secret agents, from wholly bizarre propaganda posters to a dummy whose role as a decoy enabled a daring escape, and from inflatable tanks to painted cows—really—Weird War Two reminds us that human ingenuity is boundless, yet at the same time that usually means that truth ends up stranger than fiction.
(Photo credit: Imperial War Museums).