The Lusitania
[audio]Inventions produce new weapons

  • New weapons in WWI are machine guns (small, portable, fired rapidly), tanks, airplanes, submarines, poison gas, and flamethrowers.
  • Problems new weapons caused for generals were:
    1) they had prepared war plans based on old weapons,
    2) they did not know how to fight an enemy that had the new weapons, and
    3) they did not know how effective new weapons would be.

The War at Sea

  • Great Britain used its navy to put a blockade on Germany to stop the shipment of supplies into Germany
  • Germany's navy used submarines (U-boats) to sink ships carrying supplies to the Allied countries.

The Land War
2 fronts in WWI: the Western Front (all fighting west of Germany), the Eastern Front (all fighting east of Germany).

[audio]The Western Front

  • Germany's war plan was to quickly capture Paris, to defeat the French army before it got organized, then send German troops to the Eastern Front to fight Russia.
  • The plan wasn't successful because the Germans never captured Paris. The French and English stopped them at the First Battle of the Marne.

Trench Warfare

  • "No man's land" was an area between the Allied trenches and the Central Power trenches.
  • Stalemate is a condition that two sides are fighting but neither can win.

The Eastern Front

  • Countries fighting on the Eastern Front were Russia, Germany, and Austria-Hungary.
  • The German army had success against the Russian Army because the German soldiers were better-trained and better-equipped with weapons.
  • The Russian army in 1917 had little supplies due to Russia's poor transportation system, and was getting smaller (suffered 3.6 million casualties, 2 million soldiers were captured).

Events that pushed America to war

  • The sinking of the Lusitania by German U-boat caused Americans to want to start war with Germany because 128 American citizens died on the ship.
  • The Zimmerman telegram proposed a Mexican-German alliance if the U.S. entered the war. Germany would help Mexico gain back the lost land.
  • The Germans resumed unrestricted submarine warfare because Germans thought this would stop all supplies from reaching the Allies, the Allies would be defeated before the U.S. entered the war.

[audio]The United States Tilts the Balance

  • U.S. production of arms, ammunition, supplies, and food helped the Allies.
  • A convoy is a large group of ships carrying supplies.
  • The U.S. and British navies protected ships from U-boats allowing more supplies to reach the Allies.


  • Almost 2 million American soldiers were sent to Europe and helped the Allies.


  • Propaganda is information given to convince people to believe in certain ideas.
  • A steady supply of troops and weapons from the U.S. motivated Allies.


  • General John J. Pershing was a commander of the American Army.
  • Pershing insisted that American troops be commanded by American generals.

Ending the War

  • In March, 1918, Germany attacked, hoping that it could win the war before the U.S. sent lots of troops over.
  • U.S. soldiers and supplies had already arrived when the German's attack failed.
  • An armistice is an agreement to stop fighting.
  • The German announcement to resume unrestricted submarine warfare and the German sinking of 3 U.S. merchant ships pushed the U.S. to declare war on Germany.
  • Unanimous is a condition in which everyone votes the same way without special rights.
  • The U.S. military needed more soldiers and sailors, so the government began a draft.