Good morning, we will continue with World War I and World War II documentaries with a look back to World War I and the numbers that were involved when the Americans joined the War.
The Great War in Numbers is a series that explores World War I and the numbers involved. Men, ammunition, aircraft, and ships in high numbers were involved. Numbers would factor in who would emerge victoriously and who would lose. This was the first time in history that such numbers were documented. One billion artillery shells, a million guns, and men dying at sixty thousand a day. No cost was too high to fight the Great War.
At the end of 1917, the war transformed. The war has shifted with the technology that was developed. The Romanov dynasty was destroyed. The French were in munity. The Germans and British were bleeding each other dry. A new army arrived in Europe: the Americans. Will 1918 see the end of the war?
Everyone is clear that the numbers will factor in the war. Those numbers would tip the balance in the Allies’ favor. However, the Americans were not ready until 1919. The United States Army did not have a huge number of soldiers trained to send over. Immigrants, African Americans, and poor rural farmers are going to get called up to fight in the war. American upper classes are largely exempt from the draft. Woodrow Wilson was a segregationist and did not want to arm African Americans. However, the French were happy to see the Americans. The French welcomed soldiers of all colors to their restaurants. So, the army took pains to limit contact between the soldiers and the French citizens.
The Germans are alarmed that the Americans are coming. So, the Germans paid off the Bolsheviks to start their revolution and get rid of the Tsar. After the Tsar was disposed of, the Germans negotiated with the Bolsheviks for peace. Peace talks broke down and so Germany invaded Russia and came within miles of Petrograd. This forced the Bolsheviks to the negotiation table and German territory was enlarged.
With peace between the Bolsheviks and Germany, Germany was able to transport its soldiers from the Eastern front to the western front. This transportation replaced their casualties. The British army could not replace their men and so the army shrunk. The British and German Forces came ahead on the Somme.
In 1918, the German guns were launched in the largest barrage of the war. Over 1 million shells fell at the start of the battle. By the end of the day, over three million shells were fired. The Germans outnumbered the British soldiers on the ground. The Germans had it all, however, they did not count on the Americans. The Germans thought the British were tired of fighting and wanted to undermine their resolve. The Germans dropped leaflets over the front as well asking the British soldier what they were fighting for and telling them that the American help was a year away.
The Somme also introduced the Storm Troopers. These soldiers were armed with guns and bayonets and grenades. They relied on speed to surprise the British soldiers. Within ninety minutes many soldiers were taken prisoner or killed. Some soldiers were taken prisoner without a shot being fired. At the end of the first day, fifty miles of the British line has fallen and the Germans advanced three miles. How could the British stop the German advance? Tune into the rest of the episode to find out more.
This would be a fascinating episode to show in a World History Class.
I'm a librarian with an active imagination who likes to create. Genealogist and Researcher.
My Teachers Pay Teachers Store! Worksheets available as a Word Document.
I am also on Lulu! If you're interested in genealogy I have several books available!
HistoryDocTube will not collect any personal information and will not sell any personal information to a third party. We will not request any personal information.
The purpose of this blog is to share information on what can be used in a classroom, private school, or home school setting as well as serve as a portfolio of my personal and professional work.
The reviews are my opinions and should be treated as such. I just want to provide a tool for teachers to select documentaries for their classrooms.