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How were those trenches? What did the AEF do “Over There”? Make sure you check out the impact of the AEF, as one test question will come from this reading!
Once the war ended, what happened? An easy peace treaty meeting in Paris – typical, right? Not so fast …
For your next class, preview the peace process that came after the war by reading from ABC-CLIO (usmstudent, historyrules) entitled “The Processes of Peace: Introduction: Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points“ concerning the Paris Peace Conference and the Treaty of Versailles. The History Channel also has a decent overview video and reading. You can also watch Peace, Diplomacy, and Reparation. As you read and watch, you should be able to :
- … generally describe Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points.
- … discuss why the rest of the “Big Four” opposed Wilson’s Fourteen Points.
- … give a broad outline of the actual peace provisions of the Treaty of Versailles.
- … discuss why the Treaty of Versailles was opposed by the Senate and some of the public in the US.
- … describe how the Versailles process was a failure in the goal of continuous world peace.
Please come to class with some questions about the peace process, as we will discuss it in detail.
You can also spend some time thinking about the legacy of the Great War – The War to End All Wars – World War I.
Check out War Without End, What Did We Learn? and WWI Casualty and Death Tables from PBS to THINK about the overall impact of the Great War, both globally and in the United States. Also, check out the website for the World War I Memorial and sign the petition to rededicate it – we may see it in DC. You may also want to check out the description of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery – four or you will lay a wreath there in six weeks.
So, Doughboy – how were the trenches?
After today’s class, you hopefully have an idea about the challenges American had when they were part of the trench warfare in World War I – and remember, they didn’t have it nearly as bad as the other Allies (or the Germans)! Wnat to learn more? Check out the sites listed below.
- Trenches on the Web
- Life in the Trenches
- Trench Warfare – Why was there a stalemate in the trenches?
- Life in the Trenches from Spartacus
- Some info on the AEF and their battles from Creating America
Want some actual letters from the trenches? Check out …
Want some games?
You should have a solid understanding of America’s entry into the Great War, including the rationale outline by Woodrow Wilson in his war message to Congress. Now it’s time to go “Over There” and become part of the AEF – The American Expeditionary Force. To prepare for your next class experience, please carefully read Welcome to the AEF, using this reading guide to direct you. Make sure you listen to “Over There” by George Cohen – it’s a classic! We will find out the challenges that the men faced in the trenches on the Western Front (check out this animation to get a preview, as well as the video below).
In English, you will also get the material you need for the Home Front discussion we will have on Wednesday. Use Over Here – The American Home Front to complete the general information as well as the specific role sheet presented to you in class. You will share your story (and a primary source or two) with everyone in class. If you don’t fill in all of the notes on your note sheet, you should be all right – but you have to be prepared for your role!
You should also take a look at how the Great War affected Wisconsin. I have a podcast you should listen to regarding Milwaukee (one test question will come from it, and there is a spot for notes on your Home Front handout), and you can also check out some of the following links below – mostly because you love history and Wisconsin …
- Through The World Wars at the Wisconsin Veteran Museum – you may have been here in 4th grade – and you can visit it for extra credit over the next couple of weeks!
- Roses of No Man’s Land and Eyes of the Army – Two very cool sites from the Wisconsin Veterans Museum, chock full of primary sources!
Interested in checking out some WWI movies? How about …
All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) – An English language adaptation of the famous novel by German author Erich Maria Remarque. The film follows a group of German schoolboys as they enlist at the beginning of WWI and experience the highs and lows of war. While it is not from an American perspective, it is the most famous movie on World War I. It was also the 1930 Academy Award winner for best picture. There is a more recent television version of the movie from 1979.
Sergeant York (1941) – A hillbilly sharpshooter becomes one of the most celebrated American heroes of WWI when he single-handedly attacks and captures a German position using the same strategy as in turkey shoot. Gary Cooper won an Oscar for his performance in the title role.
Paths of Glory (1957) – “The futility and irony of the war in the trenches in WWI is shown as a unit commander in the French army must deal with the mutiny of his men and a glory-seeking general after part of his force falls back under fire in an impossible attack.” (IMDB.com)
In Love and War (1996) – “Reporter Ernest Hemingway is an ambulance driver in Italy during World War I. While bravely risking his life in the line of duty, he is injured and ends up in the hospital, where he falls in love with his nurse, Agnes von Kurowsky.” (IMDB.com). A love story with the war as a backdrop. Meh.
The Lost Battalion (2001) (TV) – The tagline for the movie tells the story – “Caught between two lines of fire, the Germans gave them two options: surrender or die. They chose a third.” From A&E, this film chronicles an American battalion of over 500 men that is trapped behind enemy lines in the Argonne Forest in October 1918. The film also has a website with some great information about WWI. I have a copy of this available in my classroom!
Flyboys (2006) – This film chronicles the story of the Lafayette Escadrille, young Americans who volunteered for the French military before the U.S. entered World War I. the men became legendary heroes and country’s first fighter pilots. The DVD site has some fun games – try out Flyboys n’ the Hood!
Red Baron (2008) – I haven’t seen ii, but it’s a pretty simple plot explanation – the life of German piolt Manfred von Richthofen
War Horse (2011) – This movie about, well, a horse in World War I was up for an Oscar … I liked it!
REVIEW THE START OF WWI
Hopefully you have a decent idea about the origins of the Great War – The War to End All Wars – WORLD WAR I. Please review the material below to get a better understanding about the long term causes of the war in Europe – and maybe think of some questions! Want some more info? Check out …
- The videos for the four MAIN causes of the war in Europe -Militarism / Alliances / Imperialism / Nationalism
- A great animated map that gives an overview of the short term cause of the war – the assassination!
- An AWESOME three part video on the assassination of the Archduke from the BBC – Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3
- A map that provides a simple timeline of the path to war in Europe
AND NOW … SHOULD THE US GET INVOLVED?
We now know that war broke out in Europe in 1914, with the entire continent being affected by the “war to end all wars.” The United States did not get involved militarily until 1917, however. Did they need to join in the fray “over there”? In our next class, we will discuss American involvement in the war. To prepare, you should also complete “Should America Enter the Great War”?” using the handout from class and the Advice for Mr. Wilson website. Make sure you follow the directions carefully – you should come to class with advice for the President!
Let’s take a look at what you came up with as you examined the various instances of American involvement with other countries at the turn of the century. Post your thesis (and possibly your cartoon) in the proper spot on the board for your section!
After you have heard the various ideas from your classmates and had any additional questins answered, post your finished paragraphs in the proper section of google classroom.