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Warm-up. How do you think the addition of the United States would affect The Great War?. Preparing for war. At first, the U.S. sent only supplies, support, arms and a force of 14,500 men led by John J. Pershing.

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Warm up


How do you think the addition of the United States would affect The Great War?

Preparing for war
Preparing for war

  • At first, the U.S. sent only supplies, support, arms and a force of 14,500 men led by John J. Pershing.

  • Pershing recommended that the army number one million men by 1918 and three million by 1919.

General Pershing fought against Indians on the Western frontier, chased down Pancho Villa, fought rebels in the Philippines and fought with Teddy Roosevelt in Cuba.

Draftees and volunteers
Draftees and Volunteers

  • The Selective Service Act authorized a draft of young men for military service.

  • By 1918, more than 24 million men had registered. Three million of these were picked and along with volunteers and National Guardsmen, they made up the American Expeditionary Force (AEF).

  • In addition, 11,000 women volunteered as non-combatants.


  • Draftees were sent to camps where they were prepared for World War I.

  • In most cases, training was abbreviated in order to get troops to Europe quicker.

Convoy system
Convoy System

  • In April of 1917, German U-boats sunk more than 400 Allied and neutral ships.

  • The convoy system consisted of troop transport ships, destroyers and ships fitted with anti-submarine capabilities (torpedoes and hydrophones).

American soldiers in europe
American Soldiers in Europe

  • General Pershing kept American soldiers separated from Allied soldiers so that they would not become too defensive.

  • The European soldiers were tired and weak when the soldiers from the U.S. arrived.

  • American soldiers picked up the nickname “doughboys.”

  • Segregation

    • 300,000 African Americans served in the armed forces during WWI.

    • These soldiers fought in segregated units when they were allowed to fight.

    • The 369th Infantry Regiment, known as Harlem’s Hell Fighters asked to be loaned to the French, who allowed them to fight.

    • They went on to win France’s highest combat medal.

Turning the tide of the war











Ottoman Empire



Turning the Tide of the War

Europe in 1917

  • In November 1917, Lenin and the Bolsheviks overthrew the Republican government and signed a truce with Germany, giving up land.

  • This enabled Germany to send troops from the Eastern front to the west.

The germans advance
The Germans Advance

  • In March of 1918, the Germans attacked the Western Front.

  • They broke through the lines and advanced into Allied territory.

  • By the end of May they were within 50 miles of Paris.

The u s saves paris
The U.S. Saves Paris

  • In late May, American troops turned Germany’s offensive back and recaptured Allied territory.

  • As American troops went on the offensive, they were commanded to dig no trenches.

  • In the Second Battle of the Marne, French and American troops counterattacked the Germans and pushed them back.


  • With 250,000 American troops arriving in Paris every month, the Allies had the upper hand.

  • They were also able to use the tank to successfully attack trenches.

  • The Allies demanded that Germany surrender unconditionally.

  • In September, 500,000 American troops attacked positions long held by the Germans.

  • Soon the Germans were in retreat. Their supply lines were broken.

War in the air
War in the Air

  • In the 1918 offensive, the United States used airplanes to drop bombs on enemy positions.

  • Airplanes had not been used in this role to this point.

Ending the war
Ending the War

  • As the Central Powers lost more and more ground, the ethnic groups inside their empires started to declare independence.

  • This happened in Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire.

  • As Germany lost more ground, their navy and then army mutinied, refusing to fight any longer.

  • The Kaiser fled Germany and the new German Republic signed an armistice on November 11, 1918.

Influenza epidemic
Influenza Epidemic

  • In the last months of the war, an epidemic of influenza killed more people than all of the battles of WWI.

  • The new strain of influenza attacked all ages and spread easily in the unsanitary conditions of military bases.

Results of war
Results of War

  • 50,000 Americans died in WWI.

  • Many more died from disease.

  • 8 million European soldiers died in WWI.

  • Many more were wounded.

  • Gas had blinded many.

  • Some had to have feet amputated as a result of trench foot.

  • In the Ottoman Empire, genocide was carried out against the Armenians, who they suspected of being disloyal during the war.