Commemorating the First World War Centennial in Kansas

Month: November 2017 (Page 1 of 2)

C-SPAN3–December 3rd

It’s going to be a quiet weekend for WWI on C-SPAN3–just one program, repeated once.

Peace Efforts Before U.S. Entered WWI.  Jay Sexton and Jennifer Keene comment on audio clips from the podcast, “Enter the Peace Broker.”  First airing is at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 3rd; it repeats that evening at 9:30 p.m.  Times are Central, and as usual, we’re not responsible for schedule changes. more

Centennial Countdown to the Great War: November 1917

In November 1917 British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour issues a declaration stating the British Government’s support for “the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”  The Bolsheviks seize power in Russia and proclaim to the world that the new government intends to negotiate an “immediate democratic peace.”  Prime Minister Kerensky escapes Petrograd and rallies the Army in an attempt to retake control, but is defeated and goes into hiding.  Trotsky publishes the text of confidential diplomatic communications and secret treaties with foreign governments discovered in the Russian Foreign Office.  Armistice negotiations between Russia and Germany begin.  On the Western Front, the battle of Passchendaele comes to an end after weeks of intense combat and high casualties on both sides.  The British Army launches a surprise tank attack at Cambrai; initial gains are lost in German counterattacks.  Allied leaders meet in Rapallo to coordinate strategy.  French Prime Minister Painleve is forced to resign after losing a vote of confidence; former Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau assumes leadership of a new government.  An American delegation led by Colonel House arrives in Paris for the inaugural conference of the Inter-Allied Supreme War Council.  In Great Britain, the Marquess of Lansdowne, a former Foreign Secretary, sends a letter to the Daily Telegraph urging the Government to seek a negotiated peace with Germany.  In an agreement finalized in Washington, the United States agrees that Japan has “special interests” in China and Japan agrees to the “principle” of the “open door” policy; China is not consulted.  President Wilson tells the annual convention of the American Federation of Labor in Buffalo that the way to a permanent peace is through victory.  American forces achieve their first victories and suffer their first casualties of the war.  Woman suffrage, still making slow but steady gains state by state, is approved in New York but rejected in Ohio.  New York City’s reform mayor John Purroy Mitchel loses his bid for reelection to Tammany Hall’s candidate.  The Espionage Act survives a First Amendment challenge. more

The French 75

It is often said about WW1 that the catastrophic casualties were due to the fast pace of battlefield technology far out-stripping the development of tactics. The fifty years leading up to 1914 saw steel gun tubes, rifling, cordite, TNT and its precursors, time fuses, self-contained ammunition, brass casings, breech loading, rapid fire systems (everything from machine guns to rifle magazines down to stripper clips), railroad transport, armored ships and the list can go on. more

Bonus Expeditionary Force (The Bonus Army)

The Kansas State Historical Society has copies of Kansas WW1 Veteran’s official military record, evidence of a person’s military career. In it includes when the veterans enlisted and when they were discharged. Most of them also have evidence of what units the veterans served during his/her enlistment.  In my day this document had a government number DD214. It is a vital piece of paper that is required for any benefit due a soldier. more

The Annals of Kansas, #30

100 years ago in Kansas, November 29 – December 9, 1917:

November 29, 1917

  • Kansas was given 800 federal troops to protect industries.

December 2, 1917

  • An army balloon, dragging a 6,000-foot steel cable, broke away in a high wind at Fort Omaha and made a path through Kansas, breaking telegraph and telephone wires.  Damage was reported at Newton, Herington, Fort Riley, Wamego and Council Grove.  The balloon was grounded at Meade.
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    C-SPAN3, November 24-28

    This looks like the weekend where one can see many of the talks given at the two recent conferences at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City.  All times given here are Central, and all programs can be viewed on the C-SPAN website once they air on the networks.  We’re not responsible for schedule changes. more

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