Seventy years ago, when Princess Elizabeth walked down the aisle, England was in a very different state: In the years immediately after WWII, and as the country was struggling to rebuild itself, rationing measures were still in place. In fact, when her countrymen and women learned that Princess Elizabeth would have to use rationing coupons to pay for her wedding dress, they offered up their own.
The country needed an emotional boost and Picture Post was there to provide plenty of rah-rah. Picture Post was to England what LIFE magazine was to the United States: It covered the news at home and abroad primarily through pictures. For the wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten, Duke of Edinburgh, on November 20 in 1947, Picture Post had photographers everywhere—in Westminster Abbey, along the route to Buckingham Palace, and in the streets where throngs of people gathered to celebrate and cheer. FOTO has pored through our archives and discovered these photos—forgotten and rarely-seen—which were not published at the time. We present them here, along with a few classics that made the pages of Picture Post.Bert Hardy/Getty Images ALL SMILES Bert Hardy/Getty Images DRINKS ALL ROUND Hulton Archive/Getty Images THE HEIR TO THE THRONE ON HER WAY TO THE ABBEY Picture Post/Getty Images FRONT ROW Picture Post/Getty Images ELEVATED VIEW Bert Hardy/Picture Post/Getty Images AN UNEXPECTED VIEW Picture Post/Getty Images PREPARED FOR ANYTHING Picture Post/Getty Images CLASSIC STYLE Picture Post/Getty Images LITTLE FACES Carl Sutton/Picture Post/Getty Images QUIET MOMENT Bert Hardy/Picture Post/Getty Images THE BOY WHO SAW THE HORSES’ HOOFS Raymond Kleboe/Picture Post/Getty Images PRIME POSITION Harry Deverson/Picture Post/Getty Images AN APPLE A DAY Bert Hardy/Picture Post/Getty Images IN GOOD HANDS Picture Post/Getty Images CARRIED AWAY Charles Hewitt/Picture Post/Getty Images HERE COMES THE CARRIAGE Bert Hardy/Picture Post/Getty Images ENTER THE BRIDESMAIDS
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