World War I: 1914–1918

Vocabulary

American Expeditionary Forces

members of the American forces who fought in World War I

armistice

formal agreement to cease fighting for a period

Article X

President Wilson's proposed covenant in the Treaty of Versailles that would have compelled members of the League of Nations to go to war to protect member nations in the event of unprovoked attack

Committee on Public Information (CPI)

government agency responsible for convincing the American public to support the war and everything that U.S. involvement entailed for Americans, including the draft

drafted

forcibly enlisted into the armed services

Espionage Act

act of Congress that made it illegal to interfere with or impede the success of the U.S. military or to promote or enable enemies of the United States

Fourteen Points

Woodrow Wilson's vision of the steps that would be necessary to achieve world peace

July Crisis

chain reaction of events in July 1914 following the June assassination of Archduke Ferdinand and his wife, leading up to the declaration of war that launched World War I

League of Nations

international alliance of nations established by the Treaty of Versailles

Lusitania

British passenger ship sunk by a German U-boat during its transatlantic voyage from Liverpool, England, to New York City in May 1915. Of the 1,198 passengers killed, 128 were Americans.

neutrality

position of not supporting either side in a conflict

reparations

money paid to those nations devastated by a defeated nation's aggression during a war

Sedition Act

act of Congress criminalizing speech that maligned the U.S. government, Constitution, military, and flag

stalemate

situation in which neither side has the opportunity to advance

Treaty of Versailles

formal agreement worked out at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919 that officially ended World War I

U-boat

German submarine. The term is the anglicized version of the German word U-boot, or Unterseeboot, which in translation means "undersea boat."

unrestricted submarine warfare

military tactic in which submarines fire upon marine vessels without warning with the intention of sinking them

Woodrow Wilson

the 28th president of the United States

Zimmermann Telegram

telegram sent from Germany to Mexico that offered Mexico assistance in regaining territory lost to the United States in exchange for support during the war