The Murder of Edith Cavell


George Wesley Bellows ( American, 1882 - 1925 )

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General Description

In 1918 George Bellows produced twenty lithographs collectively known as his War series. Each work represented an event or circumstance related to reports of human suffering and atrocities committed as the German army invaded Belgium. The subject for_The Murder of Edith Cavell_ is the execution of a British Red Cross nurse in Brussels. When the German army occupied the Belgian capital city in 1914, Edith Cavell helped French and British soldiers and civilians evade capture and escape to neutral territories. Despite international outcry at her imprisonment and conviction, she was killed by a firing squad in the early morning of October 12, 1915. Her death became a dramatic narrative for wartime propaganda aimed at bolstering support for anti-German efforts.

Emily Schiller, Digital Collections Content Coordinator, 2015.

Fun Facts

  • The man who generously donated this print to the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts in 1978, inherited the work from his father, who had been a classmate of George Bellows at Ohio State.

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