THE STORY OF THE AEF BY ITS MEMBERS, ALLIES & OPPONENTS IN SEVEN PARTS
Time Frame: Before the War thru America's Entry
AMERICA BEFORE THE GREAT WAR
When I was a little boy about ten years old, my father went to
Europe to visit his aged mother in Germany ... After that I used to
dream of an ocean voyage to Europe and particularly Germany ... Little
did I then think that "My First Journey" to Europe would be with a gun
in my hands on a mission to kill my German cousins.
... I can think of no better starting point than August 9th, the second
Sunday in August 1914. The previous week the war had fully exploded
in Europe. We are in church, a little chapel... in North
Philadelphia... the people who composed our little congregation, hard
working, honest, God-fearing. The older generation had, almost all,
been born in Europe, the younger generation in the United States. All
were American citizens, every one of them...
AT FIRST AMERICANS ARE NOT ENTHUSIASTIC ABOUT JOINING THE FRAY
BUT AMERICANS ARE DRAWN BY EVENTS TO RESENT GERMAN MILITARISM; SOME JOIN THE ALLIES, OTHERS PREPARE FOR AMERICAN SERVICE
Harvard graduate Alan Seeger joins the French Foreign Legion early in the war and is Killed in Action at the Somme, July 4, 1916. Before his death, he composes an immortal poem.
I have a rendezvous with death at some disputed barricade... on some scarred slope of battered hill... at midnight in some flaming town... and I to my pledged word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous.
Other Yanks join volunteer organizations like the American Field Service or the Allied Armies
Since I was under-age [and had been discovered], I was assigned to
work at a lumber mill near the Swiss border where we made duckboards.
They put me to work as sort of an apprentice mule skinner. Mules are
smarter than horses and a lot of people too. I had to learn to think
like a mule to get those animals to do anything.
AFTER THE LUSITANIA AMERICANS ALSO BECOME MORE INVOLVED IN US MILITARY OPERATIONS
IN EARLY 1917, THE GERMANS RENEW UNRESTRICTED SUBMARINE WARFARE AND IN MARCH THE TSAR FALLS IN RUSSIA.
On April 2, 1917
Passed by the United States Senate and
House of Representatives
WHEREAS, The Imperial German Government has committed repeated acts of war against the Government and the people of the United States of America; therefore, be it
Resolved, by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the state of war between the United States and the Imperial German Government, which has thus been thrust upon the United States, is hereby formally declared; and
That the President be, and he is hereby, authorized and directed to employ the entire naval and military forces of the United States and the resources of the Government to carry on war against the Imperial German Government; and to bring the conflict to a successful termination all the resources of the country are hereby pledged by the Congress of the United States.
|Before the War
| Arrival in
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