Schlieffen Plan Stalls &Stalemate Germany was not able to sweep through the west and fight on the east as quickly as they planned – they were defeated in the Battle of the Marne on the Western Front (border of France and Germany where most of the fighting took place). Germany was forced to split their troops and fight on two fronts. This led to a stalemate where neither side was winning.
Trench Warfare Starting in 1915 along the Western Front troops dug trenches or ditches to protect themselves while fighting. Trenches created an even worse stalemate and made the soldiers fight and live in miserable conditions. It was difficult to gain land, and many lives were lost.
Machine Guns The machine guns of WWI required 4 – 6 men to shoot and had to be on a flat surface. They had the fire power of 100 regular guns. Large field guns were also used, and they fired shells which would explode on impact. They could fire over a longer range but needed 12 men to operate.
Poison Gas Germans first used chlorine gas in the battle of Ypres (1915). This worked by burning out the lungs of people who inhaled it. Mustard gas was used later on, and it would be fired into the trenches. It took a while to work and caused blistering, vomiting, sore eyes and bleeding. It could take up to a month to die as
Airplanes This was the first time planes were used in battle. They were first used to deliver supplies and for spying. It was quickly discovered that guns could be affixed to airplanes as well as bombs and cannons and they could fight in the sky.
Zeppelins Zeppelins were flying aircraft that were used by Germans at the beginning of the war to drop bombs. They were quickly abandoned because it was way too easy to shoot them down.
Submarines/ϋnterseeboot At the beginning of WWI most navies had submarines but were hesitant about their uses. Germans tend to be known most for their use of submarines/torpedoes but at the beginning of the war the British sank 17 German submarines with their
Torpedoes Torpedoes were used by Germans on their submarines. Unrestricted submarine warfare was a major issue in the war, and the Germans sunk many US ships that were carrying supplies to Britain, including the Lusitania.
Tanks! The first tanks were used in WWI at the battle of Somme. Tanks at first could not exceed 3mph, could only hold 3 men, and could not handle trenches. By the end of the war a tank could carry 10 men, had a revolving turret and could travel at 4 mph!