Trench Warfare<br />Troops dug deep ditches known as “trenches” for protection.<br />These trenches would serve as sleeping quarters, hospitals, and dinning rooms.<br />The area between two opposing trenches was called no man’s land.<br />No man’s land was covered with barbed wire, mines, and waves of bullets.<br />
Rats in the Trenches<br />Corpses and food in the trenches attracted rats.<br />Rats propogate quickly (one pair of rats can produce 880 offspring in a year)<br />Trenches became infested<br />They could grow as large as a cat and were bold<br />Feed on wounded men who were still alive but couldn’t protect themselves<br />Eat eyes and liver<br />Soldiers watched them to see when an attack was coming…said to disappear minutes before<br />
New Weapons<br />1. Poison Gas- The fumes would cause blindness, coughing, vomiting and suffocation.<br /> 2. Tank- This was first used by the British. They were used to roll across no man’s land.<br /> 3. Airplanes- These were used for taking photographs of the enemy’s position and to drop bombs.<br /> 4. Machine Gun- Used to shoot people down quickly in no man’s land.<br /> 5. U-Boat- Submarine used by Germans to sink enemy ships.<br />
Air Combat<br />Airplanes fighting each other was a new concept in WWI.<br />Flying was very dangerous because the gas tank sat underneath the pilot seat.<br />Airplanes got the nickname “flying coffin”.<br />If you shot down 5 enemy planes you got the title of “Ace”.<br />The most famous German pilot was Manfred von Richthofen who was known as the “Red Baron”. He shot down over 80 airplanes.<br />The most famous American pilot was Eddie Rickenbacker who shot down 25 planes.<br />
Eddie Rickenbacker<br />He was born in Columbus Ohio in 1890.<br />He was a famous race car driver before WWI.<br />When the war started, he decided to join as a pilot.<br />He fought in 134 air battles.<br />“Ace of Aces”<br />For his heroism, he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.<br />
The American Soldier<br />The typical soldier was armed with 107 pieces of equipment. Such as:<br /> 1. Rifle 4. Gas Mask<br /> 2. Helmet 5. Wire Cutters<br /> 3. Knife 6. Grenades<br />The nickname for the American soldier was “Doughboy” because of their large appearance carrying all the equipment. <br />
The Battle of Argonne Forest<br />The supreme commander of the Allied forces was Ferdinand Foch from France.<br />The American leader was General John J. Pershing. His nickname was Black Jack.<br />Fighting began for this battle on September 26th, 1918.<br />There were 600,000 U.S. soldiers that fought in this battle.<br />Very slowly the American forces defeated German positions.<br />
End of the War<br />During The Battle of Argonne Forest, The Allied forces opened a hole in the German lines which ended the fighting.<br />At the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918, fighting stopped. (11/11/1918)<br />Germany agreed to an armistice or a cease fire.<br />We celebrate Nov. 11th each year as Veterans Day to honor our soldiers.<br />
Alvin York<br />Born in 1887 and raised very poor in the mountains of Tennessee.<br />He became very skilled in shooting from hunting wild game.<br />During WWI he killed many Germans and captured more than 130 prisoners.<br />He was awarded the Medal of Honor and became the most decorated soldier of WWI.<br />There have been many books and movies made about his life.<br />
The Christmas Truce<br />Christmas Eve 1914…the gunfire stops around 9 pm<br />British troops begin to hear silent night being sung in German, and they join in<br />The next morning both sides walk out into no man’s land bringing gifts, they shake hands and hang out<br />Soccer game is played<br />Next day….the war resumes<br />
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