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Presentation on theme: "THE AMERICAN PEOPLE CREATING A NATION AND A SOCIETY NASH  JEFFREY HOWE  FREDERICK  DAVIS  WINKLER  MIRES  PESTANA Chapter 22: The Great War Pearson."— Presentation transcript:

1 THE AMERICAN PEOPLE CREATING A NATION AND A SOCIETY NASH  JEFFREY HOWE  FREDERICK  DAVIS  WINKLER  MIRES  PESTANA Chapter 22: The Great War Pearson Education, Inc, publishing as Longman © 2006 7th Edition


3 THE CAUSES OF WAR Many signs of international cooperation with agreements on telegraphs in 1865, postage in 1875, copyright in 1880, international time zones in the 1890s and the establishment of the World Court in 1899 Improved technology and industrialization and also fostered a new sense of nationalism among the countries of the world There was also a growing rivalry over European trade, colonies, and spheres of influence in Africa and Asia The large European powers began an industrial arms race followed by an intricate system of national treaties and alliances that would compel most of the world to declare war at the slightest incident The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary delivered such an incident

4 THE CAUSES OF WAR Austria-Hungary decided to punish Serbia Russia mobilized in defense of Serbia Germany, supporting Austria-Hungary, declared war on Russia and France Britain declared war on Germany after it marched through neutral Belgium to get to France The Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria joined the Central Powers Italy joined the Allies after being secretly promised additional territory after the war Japan declared war on Germany because it wanted Shantung province and a number of German controlled islands in the Pacific Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and, initially, the U.S. remained neutral Americans saw the outbreak of war in Europe as a form of madness

5 European Empires in 1914

6 AMERICAN REACTIONS Social reformers worried the war would direct energy away from reform – Jane Addams organized the American Woman’s Peace Party While many Americans sought to end the war through international mediation, others wanted to join the great adventure – Many Americans viewed war as a romantic struggle for honor and glory

7 THE NEW MILITARY TECHNOLOGY After the French stopped the German advance at the Battle of the Marne in September 1914, the fighting bogged down into trench warfare – Battle of the Somme: Germans lost 600,000, British lost 419,000 and the French 194,000 Rapid-firing rifles, improved explosives, incendiary shells and tracer bullets added to the destruction – Improved artillery was most devastating of all being able to hit targets miles away – The machine gun neutralized the frontal assault yet generals refused to abandon this tactic War was both a traditional and a revolutionary struggle – Last war to employ cavalry and the first to use new generation of military technologies – By 1918, airplanes were dropping bombs and tanks, which first appeared in 1916, were neutralizing the machine gun – Wireless radio, telephones and poison gas were all part of the war

8 THE NEW MILITARY TECHNOLOGY While the Western front in France is the most famous, there was an Eastern front that pitted Russia against German and Austrian troops and a third front along the northern Italian and Austrian border in 1915 – Submarines and battleships carried war around the world – Soldiers from the British Empire, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, India, and French-speaking black Africans all fought on the western front while the British and French battled the Germans in Africa over their colonies – After the Turks entered the war, they systematically massacred 800,000 Armenians Theodore Roosevelt and Leonard Wood started a camp for college men in 1913 to prepare them for war

9 The Great War in Europe and the Middle East

10 DIFFICULTIES OF NEUTRALITY Despite President Wilson’s call for American neutrality, many Americans found old loyalties hard to give up – 8 million German and Austrian Americans lived in the US and some supported their homeland – Some Irish Americans sided against Great Britain – A few Swedes distrusted the Russians too much to side with the Allies – Some American intellectuals, scholars and physicians who had studied in Germany saw it as a center of culture, learning and social welfare Ultimately the ties of language and culture tipped the balance for most Americans in the Allies’ favor though there were a variety of additional factors – Export and import trade was more important with the Allies than with the Central Powers – Wilson’s closest advisors as well as newspaper owners and editors supported the Allies – Ultimately, most Americans believed that France and England were fighting to preserve human culture against barbarians Wilson hoped that by keeping the U.S. out of the war he might control the peace

11 WORLD TRADE AND NEUTRALITY ACTS Wilson closed the stock market on July 31, 1914 – Discouraged loans by Americans to belligerent banks Insisted on the rights of neutral trade which was made difficult after Great Britain instituted an illegal blockade, mined the North Sea and began seizing American ships – Wilson decided to accept the blockade while reacting more harshly to German violations of international law – American trade with the Central Powers declined between 1914 and 1916 from $169 million to just over a million while trade with the Allies went from $825 million to more than $3 billion – U.S. government eased restrictions on private loans to belligerents (mostly to the Allies) Germans retaliated to British blockade with submarine warfare which technically violated international law requiring warning a merchant or passenger ship before attacking it – Announced submarine blockade of British Isles on 4 February 1915 – Wilson warned they would be held to “strict accountability” for destruction of American ships or lives

12 WORLD TRADE AND NEUTRALITY ACTS March 1915, German U-boat sank British liner on the way to Africa with a loss of 103 lives followed by the greater problem of the sinking of the Lusitania in May with the loss of 1200 people, including 128 Americans – Wilson refused to prohibit Americans from traveling on belligerent ships and demanded reparations from Germany and a pledge that they would stop attacking ocean liners without warning – William Jennings Bryan resigned as Secretary of State over the tone of the notes – After a German U-boat sank the Arabic, the German ambassador promised liners would not be sunk without warning – Crisis did cause books and articles to urge the nation to prepare for war – On the other side the American Union Against Militarism saw preparedness as an attempt to destroy liberal social reform at home Wilson asked for and received an enlargement of the army in June 1916 and an integration of the National Guard into the defense structure

13 INTERVENING IN MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA Despite different rhetoric, Wilson also tried to maintain stability in Latin American in order to promote American economic and strategic interests 1913: signed a treaty with Colombia paying them $5 million for loss of Panama and virtually apologizing for the way Roosevelt had treated them, but the Senate refused to ratify Wilson sent marines to the Dominican Republic and they took control of the government in May 1916 – Also sent marines to Haiti and kept marines in Nicaragua In Mexico, after Victoriano Huerta overthrew and killed Francisco Madero in 1913 (Madero had overthrown dictator Porfirio Diaz), Wilson refused to recognize Huerta’s government – Wilson then used a minor excuse to land troops in Veracruz, outraging European and Latin American countries, driving Huerta from office and leading to a civil war between Venustiano Carranza and Pancho Villa – US sent weapons to Carranze who defeated Villa – Vila then attacked Columbus, New Mexico in March 1916 causing Wilson to order General John Pershing and US troops to pursue Villa into Mexico where they roamed around until January 1917 when they were recalled

14 THE UNITED STATES ENTERS THE WAR A significant minority of Americans opposed joining the war in 1917 but once the U.S. was involved, the war became a patriotic crusade

15 THE ELECTION OF 1916 Wilson realized he had to win progressive voters and in January 1916, he appointed Louis D. Brandeis to the Supreme Court – Put heavy pressure on Congress in August and achieved passage of the Worker’s Compensation Bill and the Keatings- Owen Child Labor Bill, which was later declared unconstitutional – Pushed for passage of the Federal Farm Loan Act and supported the Adamson Act which established the 8-hour workday for all interstate railroad workers The Republicans nominated Charles Evans Hughes and prepared a platform calling for neutrality and preparedness – Wilson won by a slim margin when he carried California by 4000 votes

16 DECIDING FOR WAR Wilson’s reelection in 1916 seemed to be a national mandate for further attempts at American neutrality – Wilson outlined a plan for “peace without victory” through a negotiated settlement in January 1917 – The German leaders thought they could win a world war and rejected Wilson’s attempt at negotiation – Germans announced at the end of January that they were resuming unrestricted submarine warfare and the U.S. severed diplomatic relations – Interception of the Zimmerman telegram, in which Germany promised to help Mexico regain its lost territory if Mexico would attack the U.S., led many Americans to demand war with Germany News reached the U.S. of a revolution in Russia that had deposed the Czar in March 1917 – In November, the moderate government of Alexander Kerensky was overthrown by the Bolsheviks under Vladimir Lenin – Lenin immediately signed a separate peace with the Russians and withdrew from the war releasing thousands of Germans to fight on the western front In the North Atlantic, u-boats sank five American ships in 9 days in March On 2 April, Wilson urged Congress for a declaration of war which he got

17 A PATRIOTIC CRUSADE While pacifists, socialists and a few others opposed U.S. entry into the war, for most Americans, the war was remote George Creel headed a Committee of Public Information designed to flood Americans with nationalistic propaganda and convince them the U.S. had gone to war to promote the cause of freedom and democracy – Patriotic campaign soon became stridently anti-German and anti-immigrant June 15, 1917, Congress passed the Espionage Act which provided imprisonment or a fine or both for people who aided the enemy or caused disloyalty or refusal to do one’s duty – Authorized the postmaster general to prohibit from the mails any material he thought advocated treason or forcible resistance to U.S. laws – Used to stamp out dissent Congress later added Trading With the Enemy and the Sedition Acts – Latter prohibited disloyal, profane, scurrilous and abusive remarks about the form of government, flag or uniform of the U.S. Government tried 2168 under these acts and convicted about half Prompted the early Civil Liberties Bureau

18 RAISING AN ARMY While initially opposing the draft, Wilson decided that it was the most efficient way to organize military personnel – June 5, 1917: 9.5 million men between 21 and 31 registered for the draft – In August 1918, Congress extended the act to men between the ages of 18 and 45 – More than 24 million men registered and 2.8 million (75% of those who served) were inducted


20 THE AMERICAN SOLDIER Typical soldier stood 5 feet 7.5 inches tall, weighed 141.5 pounds and was 22 years old – Took a physical exam, an intelligence test and a psychological test – Majority had not attended high school with a median white education of 6.9 years, 4.7 for immigrants and 2.6 years for southern blacks – 31 percent were declared illiterate though intelligence tests probably mostly tested social class Women contributed to the war effort as telephone operators and clerk typists in the navy and marines – Some went overseas as army and navy nurses – Others volunteered for a tour of duty with the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, or the YMCA Army changed the lives of soldiers – Introduced the safety razor – Led to growing popularity of cigarettes and the wristwatch

21 THE BLACK SOLDIER Most black leaders supported the war in the hopes that it would help overcome prejudice but that did not happen – Some southern draft boards inducted most blacks but almost no whites while others worried about too many armed blacks – August 1917, violence erupted in Houston, Texas, involving black soldiers who had been overly harassed by Jim Crow laws and went on a rampage killing 17 whites More than 100 soldiers were court-martialed, 13 were condemned to death and hanged before appeals could be heard – Government policy was complete segregation and careful distribution of black units throughout the country African Americans were prohibited from the joining the marines and restricted to menial jobs in the navy – Only 6 black nurses went to France and they were assigned to black units – Most black soldiers worked as stevedores and common laborers under the supervision of white, noncommissioned officers

22 OVER THERE The United States entered the World War in the spring of 1917 after three years of European fighting – British and French armies were down to their last reserves and Italy’s army had nearly collapsed A few token American regiments arrived in France in the summer of 1917 under General “Black Jack” Pershing – First Americans saw action at Verdun in October 1917 – By March 1918, more than 300,000 American soldiers had reached France and by November 1918, more than 2 million Pershing insisted that American troops, with the exception of four black units assigned to the French, be segregated from French and British divisions Germany launched an all out offensive the spring of 1918 and drove within 50 miles of Paris where American troops helped stem the tide – Half a million Americans fought in their first major battle in September

23 OVER THERE In the fall of 1918, combined British, French and American troops drove the Germans back Faced with low morale among the soldiers, the mutiny of the German fleet, and the surrender of Austria, Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated on November 8 and an armistice was signed on November 11 Despite the problems shown by the “lost battalion” and the difficulties suffered by the Ninety-Second Division, the war produced a few American heroes – Joseph Oklahombi, Choctaw – Sergeant Alvin York US lost 48,000 service personnel and has many more wounded – Disease claimed 15 of every 1000 soldiers each year – British lost 900,000; the French 1.4 million and the Russians 1.7 million – Financial burden was also much less for the Americans


25 A GLOBAL PANDEMIC The fall of 1918 brought the end of the Great War and the beginning of the Spanish Flu pandemic that claimed the lives of an estimated 50 million people, with 675,000 deaths in the United States in little more than a year – Flu seems to have started at the same time in Europe, Asia, America, and even remote Eskimo villages – Hit hardest among young adults – More than 43,000 servicemen died from flu

26 DOMESTIC IMPACT OF WAR For 30 years a debate had raged over the proper role of the federal government in regulating industry and protecting people who could not protect themselves Controversy also centered on the question of how much power the federal government should have to tax and control individuals and corporations and the proper relation of the federal government to state and local governments

27 FINANCING THE WAR World War I cost the United States over $33 billion while interest and veterans’ benefits brought the total to nearly $112 billion which had to be paid for by borrowing and taxes After the war, Americans learned that their liberty bonds had lost 20 percent of their face value – Because the interest rate on bonds was tax exempt, wealthy citizens benefited more than ordinary ones War Revenue Act of 1917 boosted the tax rate sharply, levied a tax on excess profits, and increased estate taxes – Following year another bill raised the tax on the largest incomes to 77% WWI was mostly financed by inflation with food prices doubling between 1917 and 1919

28 INCREASING FEDERAL POWER The need for more centralized control and authority led Wilson to create a series of federal agencies First crisis was food, especially for Europe – Herbert Hoover was appointed director of the Food Administration and instituted “wheatless” and “meatless” days – Made women the most important group of consumers National Research Council and the National Advisory Committee on Aeronautics helped mobilize scientists to produce strategic materials formerly imported from Germany – War stimulated research and development and made the United States less dependent on European science and technology War Industries Board, led by Bernard Baruch, controlled scarce materials and occasionally set prices and priorities Cooperation among government, business, and university scientists to promote research and develop new products was one legacy of the war Government went into shipbuilding industry and the business of running railroads

29 WAR WORKERS Wilson administration sought to protect and extend the rights of organized labor during the war National War Labor Board insisted on adequate wages and reduced hours and tried to prevent exploitation of women and children working under government contracts – Favored AFL whose membership increased to more than 4 million in 1917 – Justice Department put IWW “out of business” War opened industrial employment opportunities for black men – Northern labor agencies and railroads actively recruited southern blacks resulting in a “great migration” to northern cities – Thousands of Mexicans also headed north as the US relaxed immigration regulations because of the need for farm labor War also created new employment opportunities for women – Only about 5 percent of women employed during the war were new to the workforce and almost all of them were unmarried – War accelerated trends already underway – War did not change perception that women’s place was in the home


31 THE CLIMAX OF PROGRESSIVISM After the declaration of war, many social progressives began to see the possibilities for social planning it offered Commission on Training Camp Activities was set up to solve the problem of mobilizing, entertaining and protecting American servicemen with the idea that the military experience would produce better citizens who would vote for reform – Also incorporated progressive campaigns against alcohol and prostitution

32 SUFFRAGE FOR WOMEN In fall 1918, Wilson asked the Senate to support woman suffrage, which was “vital to the winning of the war” Some who opposed the vote argued it would make women less feminine while others claimed only radicals wanted the vote Carrie Chapman Catt, president of NAWSA since 1915, coordinated state campaigns with office in Washington – In 1916, militant reformers broke with NAWSA and formed the National Women’s Party under the leadership of Alice Paul and picketed the White House demanding the vote War accelerated the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment which was ratified by the states in 1920

33 PLANNING FOR PEACE Woodrow Wilson turned U.S. participation in the war into a religious crusade to change the nature of international relations January 8, 1918, in part to counteract the Bolshevik charge that the war was a struggle among imperialist powers, Wilson announced his Fourteen Points, a plan to organize the peace – Open covenants of peace openly arrived at – Freedom of the seas – Equality of trade – Self-determination for all peoples – A League of Nations to preserve peace

34 THE VERSAILLES PEACE CONFERENCE Wilson headed the delegation to the peace conference at Versailles – Delegation did not include any Republicans despite the fact the Republicans controlled Congress – Wilson’s self-confidence grew during a triumphal tour of Europe prior to the conference – David Lloyd George of England, Georges Clemenceau of France and Vittorio Orlando of Italy were less impressed with the president and his plans From Austro-Hungarian empire, conference created Austria, Hungary and Yugoslavia. – Also created Poland, Czechoslovakia, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania – France was to occupy the industrial Saar region of Germany for 15 years – Italy gained the port of Triest but not Fiume – All these decisions made without the input of small European nations or of Soviet Russia – Wilson gave into demand for German reparations, lost much of its oil and coal territory and had to admit war guilt – Wilson also accepted a mandate system to deal with former colonies and refused to support a call for racial equality introduced by Japan

35 THE VERSAILLES PEACE CONFERENCE German people felt betrayed Japan felt slighted Italians were angry because received less territory than expected Wilson also did not win approval for freedom of the seas or the abolition of trade barriers Did win approval of the League of Nations – Council of five great powers – Elected delegates from smaller countries – World Court to settle disputes – Article X which pledged all members to help preserve other members against external aggression

36 Europe and the Near East After World War I

37 WILSON’S FAILED DREAM Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), formed during conference, denounced the treaty’s harsh terms Hate and intolerance were legacies of the war Fears of the Bolsheviks led Wilson, the Allies and the Japanese to send troops into Siberia in 1919 though most troops left by 1920 Most Americans supported the concept of the League of Nations in the summer of 1919 though the Senate refused to endorse the treaty – Lodge refused to accept Article X – Wilson refused to compromise to attract moderate Senators During a national tour to win support for the treaty, Wilson collapsed, was rushed back to Washington and suffered a massive stroke – For a year and a half the country limped along without a president – Senate killed the league treaty in March 1920


39 DISCOVERING U.S. HISTORY ONLINE The World War I Document Archive Lusitania Online Letters of World War I efault.stm Great War Series The Balkan Causes of World War I World War I Trenches

40 DISCOVERING U.S. HISTORY ONLINE Election of 1916 Influenza, 1918 Art of the First World War Women’s Suffrage The Versailles Treaty tents.html


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