Woodrow Wilson and the
1. Shift from active international
policy (League of Nations) to isolationism.
2. Progressive reforms over the course
of WWI such as Prohibition, suffrage, and rise of labor
3. The failure of Wilson's Fourteen
Point Plan and Treaty of Versailles due to the partisan
biases toward the issues
4. Political and economic turmoil in
Eastern Europe after WWI from failure of proper peace
agreements and the rise of Communism
5. Expansion of government and
bureaucracy during WWI
6. Slow shift from neutrality to
supporting the Allies in WWI due to fear of fascism and
Communism (First Red Scare)
7. Reduction of civil liberties of
those opposed to war
I. Missionary (Moral)
A. Wilson denounced
imperialism and Dollar Diplomacy as a foreign policy. He
insisted that the U.S. would deal with Latin American
countries "upon terms of equality and honor." His actions
sometimes did not reflect this.
B. Like Roosevelt, Wilson regarded
maintaining Open Door in China and completing the Panama
Canal as important.
C. Mexico was a prime example of
Wilson's "fuzzy" missionary diplomacy.
D. Francisco Madero, a progressive
advocate of Democracy, was violently overthrown by
1. Wilson would not
recognize the new government.
2. This broke traditional
diplomacy, which usually disregarded the way in which
power was obtained. Also, European nations recognized
3. Exploiting a small dispute,
Wilson initiated the invasion of Veracruz in
E. Carranza took over after Huerta
1. Originally, Wilson
supported an opponent of Carranza, "Pancho"
Villa. After seeing Carranza's commitment to
social reform and Villa's terrorist-like actions,
Wilson switched sides.
2. Villaís men crossed
into U.S.A. and killed American citizens on two
3. Wilson left Mexico to
F. Wilson's actions led to an
II. The Great War: Neutrality and
A. The assassination of Arch
Duke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary was the catalyst
to the war. Alliances created an instant world
1. Central Powers
were chiefly made of Germany and
2. Allied Powers were
chiefly made Britain, Italy, France, Russia, and later
C. The U.S. was psychologically
unprepared for the war and was for neutrality.
D. Wilson called for neutrality
despite his admiration for Britain.
E. Early in the war, the U.S.
traded with both the Central Powers and the Allied
Powers. This created tension as each side felt that the
U.S. was "selling them out".
III. Shift towards Allied
A. A third of the U.S.
population had direct ethnic ties to the warring
countries. Although a number of Germans and Irish were
against the Allies, the majority was for the
B. The German surprise attack
through neutral Belgium in the von Schlieffen Plan
was seen as barbaric. The Allied Powers barely held, as
WWI became a stalemate.
C. Propaganda by the Pro
British/Allied Powers Press exploited the Belgium attack
to draw sentiment. In contrast, German propaganda gained
only a few converts.
D. The British Navy was dominant
and set up blockades against the Central Powers
with loose and sometimes illegal interpretations of what
is considered "contraband." The British, however,
sometimes paid for confiscated cargo.
E. U.S. trade with the Allied
Powers quadrupled to $3.2 billion while trade with the
Central Powers was fleeting. U.S. even lent $2 billion to
the Allied Powers.
F. Germans developed a new
technology called the U-boat (or submarine);
however, the subs were limited in their effectiveness and
did not follow the rules of war.
G. Using surprise attacks, the
Germans created a war zone surrounding the British Isles
and sunk belligerent ships and some neutrals.
H. The Lusitania
was sunk in 1915. 128 of the 1200 killed were Americans.
This created a backlash in the U.S.
I. Wilson allowed British
blockades, but he condemned the usage of U-boats on any
vessel with U.S. citizens.
J. Neutrality advocate William
Jennings Bryan resigned from his Secretary of the State
position since Wilson did not listen to his "it would be
like putting women and children in front of an army"
K. The Germans made the Sussex
Pledge to stop sinking merchant ships without warning
in March of 1916.
L. Military spending grew after the
sinking of the Arabic.
M. Despite everything, most
citizens were against war. Merchants believed that it was
best to remain neutral.
IV. The Election of
A. The looming war and
progressive reform directed the election of 1916.
B. Roosevelt was ready to support
any Republican to remove Wilson.
C. Wilson was aided by progressive
reforms like the Owen-Keating child labor law and the
appointment of Brandeis, a Jewish Progressive to the
D. The Democrats' slogan and
Wilson's idealism was "keep us out of
Several Important Quotes by
1. "Peace without
2. "War to end all
E. Wilson won a narrow victory
V. The Road to War
A. Wilson sent envoys to both
the Central and Allied powers to work toward settlement.
He called for "Peace Without Victory". Neither side
B. The Germans denounced the Sussex
Pledge and had 100 U-boats cut off logistics and starve
C. The Russian Army collapsed after
the Communist revolution. It's now a war with one
front for the Germans.
D. The Germans felt that they could
win the war before the U.S. could be an impact, and on
Feb. 3, 1917, the Germans stepped-up attacks. - p.
E. On April 6, 1917, the USA
declares war. It was almost a year before U.S. forces
VI. Mobilizing the
A. Lack of American
industrial organization led to a dependency on British
and French weapons.
B. The problems of mobilization
were further complicated by six weeks of debate on
conscription. Draftees reached training camps six months
after the declaration of war.
C. Wilson created the War
Industry Board that controlled production, prices,
and resource distributions for the U.S.
D. Antitrust laws were suspended
and producers were actually encouraged to cooperate with
E. This regulation went far beyond
"New Nationalism" and replaced the laissez-faire view of
F. The War Industry Board sent
prices high enough for profit. U.S. Steel made $5 billion
during the war.
G. The greatest triumphs were in
food production under the leadership of Herbert
Hoover. It was just in time, Britain's food supplies
could support six more weeks.
H. Using the Lever Act,
Hoover set prices and made successful rationing plans. He
also created a government corporation, which bought the
entire American and Cuban sugar crop.
I. Slogans like "If U fast, U beat
U boats", "Serve beans, by all means" were effective in
encouraging rationing and food conservation
(Propaganda was key in war effort).
J. Farm exports rose from 12.3 to
18.6 million tons.
VII. Workers in
A. Immigration during the war
was greatly reduced, and, as men went off to war, work
became easy to find.
B. Wilson created the War Labor
Policies Board in 1918, which compelled management to
deal with labor leaders and in turn led to an increase in
C. Wages more than doubled for
VIII. Paying for the
A. The U.S. lent large sums
of funds to Europe; very little of this debt would be
B. War/Liberty Bonds worked
well due to patriotism and advertising and paid for 2/3
of the $33.5 billion war.
C. Taxes, especially from the
wealthy paid for $10.5 billion of the war. This war's
cost was distributed very equitably.
IX. Propaganda and Civil
A. Led by George
Creel, the Committee on Public Information
(CPI) was created in 1917. It produced propaganda
portraying the Germans as oppressors.
B. New names were created to avoid
German references such as "liberty cabbage" instead of
sauerkraut, and French toast instead of
C. The German language was removed
from course offerings at high schools.
D. The minority who opposed the war
was exposed to public humiliation and assault.
E. The Espionage Act of 1917
and the Sedition Act of 1918 made it illegal
to speak against the government or the war through a wide
set of laws.
F. Eugene Debs did not agree
with this suspension of rights, and he ridiculed the war
policy. He was sent to jail for 10 years. He ran for
president out of jail in 1920.
G. Anarchist Ricardo Magon was
jailed for criticizing the Mexican policy, an issue that
did not tie with the war.
H. The Constitutionality of the
Espionage Act was upheld in Schenck v. the United
States when a man mailed notices to draftees
urging them not to report.
I. The American Civil Liberties
Union (ACLU) was created as a reaction to the attacks
on civil liberties during the war and the following Red
X. War Time Reforms
A. Child labor was reduced
during the war.
B. Progressive trends were evident
through masses of skilled workers entering public
management boards and other government
C. Patriotism and public service
seemed to be united.
D. The 18th and 19th
Amendments were passed as well as reforms on
XI. Women and Blacks in
A. The majority of women
supported the war effort in numerous ways:
1. Women filled empty
roles in industry, but most lost their jobs when the
2. Women served in philanthropic
organizations such as the YMCA and Red Cross and could
also serve as nurses.
3. Some female military roles at
B. Sexism in the working world was
seen through women's exclusion from labor
C. African Americans migrated in
large numbers for the first time to North. They
filled unskilled urban jobs.
D. Blacks who left the South
improved their economic conditions; however, paranoid
that they could be replaced, Northern whites had a minor
backlash against newcomers.
E. Over 200,000 African Americans
fought in segregated regiments such as the 369th
Battalion; few were commissioned as
F. There was a racist bias in
recruitment in the South. A riot broke out in Texas where
Black recruits killed 17 white civilians.
XII. "Over There"
A. U.S. committed troops in
March of 1918. Few volunteered, thus creating the need
for forced conscription. This army was known as the
American Expeditionary Forces (AEF)
B. The Navy, using convoys and
zigzag patterns, limited the effectiveness of the U-boats
C. 1.2 million new soldiers
participating in gruesome fighting
D. War ends with armistice on Nov.
E. 8.5 million were killed, 120,000
of which were Americans.
XIII. Preparing for
A. The Allied Powers wanted
severe reparations and unfair peace accords resulted for
B. The West became concerned with
Communism and the power vacuum left in Germany and
C. Wilson's internationalist idea
of peace, which looked beyond vengeance, was called the
Fourteen Point Plan. This plan was visionary and
contains many elements of America's modern foreign
policy. The plan included:
1. Overt peace treaties
2. Freedom of the
3. An end to trade
4. Arms reductions
5. National self-determination
of boundaries and governments
6. A multinational organization
to arbitrate disputes and settle conflict prior to war
- the League of Nations.
E. The Allies wished to fall back
on the old standard of reparations and punitive
F. Wilson was highly successful in
some European reforms:
1. He dangled the Germans to
overthrew Kaiser Wilhelm II and hinted to the Allies
there is a separate peace plan for Germany to get
approval on his Fourteen Point Plan.
2. Wilson also planned to attend
the peace conference in Paris.
G. Wilson made errors in attending
the Paris Peace Conference. He represented partisan
issues and ignored economic problems at home. As a
result, the Republicans won both houses in
H. The League of Nations was a
break from U.S. isolationist policy.
I. Wilson excluded Senate members
such as Henry Cabot Lodge (reservationist) and powerful
Republicans from the peace process. This error cost him
his dreams of making the world safe for
XIV. Paris Peace
A. Each of the Big Four,
which included Wilson, Clemenceau of France, David
Lloyd George the British Prime Minister, and Vittorio
Orlando the Italian Prime Minister, promoted their own
interests, creating rifts within the peace
B. National self-determination did
not come about, and even Italy gained parts of
C. The Germans were handed heavy
reparations of $33 Billion and took responsibility for
D. The Treaty of Versailles
was largely a failure due to the loss of support for the
Fourteen Point Plan. Also, the League of Nations failed
on an international level.
E. The greatest losses were the
heavy reparations and guilt clause of the war on
F. The peace conference also was
exclusionary; Russia was left out.
XV. The Senate and the League of
A. Most Americans favored the
internationalist idea of the League of Nations, but
details concerned congress.
B. Wilson gained numerous
concessions from the European leaders to appease the U.S.
C. Congressmen that opposed the
treaty fell into two groups:
led by Henry Cabot Lodge
2. Irreconcilables led by
Senator William Borah of Idaho and La Follette of
D. The issue was complicated
because the Treaty of Versailles was tied to the
League of Nations. The Republicans could not bring
closure to the war without supporting the League of
E. Irreconcilables were inflexible
in their approach to ensure U.S. national sovereignty
over international cooperation.
F. Reservationists wanted to modify
the League of Nations, especially Article Ten.
This would commit the U.S. to war without an act of
G. Lodge united the several
factions to support his Lodge Reservations, which
limited and countered the Fourteen Point Plan.
H. Wilson was inflexible and did
not realize that he made too sharp of a break from
isolationism. He could not get enough votes to approve
the Treaty of Versailles.
A. The War Industry Board was
dismantled and military contracts were canceled.
B. Business boomed due to pent-up
of consumer demand, but increased wages and too few
consumer goods led to high inflation.
C. Agricultural prices dropped due
to the loss of European demand.
D. Unemployment rose due to
returning soldiers and economic problems.
XVII. The Red Scare
A. Returning vets were
unhappy with the labor conditions (increased wages for
their replacements), further increasing economic
B. Striking unions were
increasingly affiliated with the Communist movement and
the rising proletariat.
C. Russian and Socialist influences
on strikes were exaggerated in the press:
1. 100,000 Seattle workers
put down their tools in a general strike.
2. 343,000 walked out in the
Steel Strike, which was led by radical William
3. The Boston Police
Strike - Governor Coolidge called the National
D. Some anarchists targeted J.D.
Rockefeller and Attorney General Palmer with
E. Since most radicals were
immigrants, misconceptions were developed that all
foreigners were either radicals or communists. Few
immigrants were communists or radicals; many came to
escape the oppression of Europe.
F. Attorney General Palmer's
Red Hunts used nativist rhetoric (p. 685) to raise
the crisis beyond reality. His Red Hunts were equivalent
to the Salem Witch Trials. Palmer Raids imprisoned
and violated the civil rights of 6000 people.
G. The Justice Department under J.
Edgar Hoover led a sweep on Russian union workers; 650
were arrested and only 43 led to evidence to pursue
H. Palmer's false prediction of a
May Day revolution caused a decline in his credibility
and the Red Scare.
XVIII. The Election of
A. The Democrats nominated
James Cox from Ohio. The League of Nations became the
party's central issue.
B. Harding wanted to "Return to
Normalcy." Americans responded by electing Harding. It
would be discovered he is an easily manipulated
luxury liner torpedoed and sunk by German submarines;
created great anti-German sentiment in the U.S.
Sussex Pledge: an
attempt to end unrestricted submarine warfare
Zimmerman Note: German
proposal to align with Mexico; a primary catalyst for U.S.
entry in WWI
War Industry Board:
controlled the type and amount of industrial output,
socialistic in nature
Lever Act: Hoover's
policy to set prices of goods and rationing plans
War Bonds / Liberty
Bonds: primary source of funds for the war
Committee on Public Information
(CPI): headed by Creel to spread propaganda for
support of the war
George Creel: used
propaganda to gain support for the war
Espionage Act of 1917:
provided penalties for obstructing recruitment of soldiers
or selling war secrets
Sedition Acts of 1918:
provided penalties for those who spoke out against the U.S.
and its war policies
American Civil Liberties Union
(ACLU): reactionary union to protect civil liberties
suspended during WWI
19th Amendment: women
battalion of African Americans well known for its bravery
American Expeditionary Forces
(AEF): another name for the troops serving in Europe
Fourteen Point Plan:
Wilson's post-WWI goals that were idealistic in nature
however, only four of the points were actually in the Treaty
League of Nations: Group
of nations that gathered to discuss international relations
Big Four: Woodrow Wilson
(U.S.), Orlando (Italy), George (England), Clemenceau
Treaty of Versailles:
treaty between Germany and the Allies ending WWI; Germany
received unfavorable terms.
Supported the Treaty of Versailles, but advocated
isolationists who hated every aspect of the Treaty of
May Revolution: the
rumor that on May Day there would be Communist revolution in
Steel Strike: a 1919
strike in which 300,000 steel workers went on
Boston Police Strike: 19
officers were suspended after being put down by a state
Red Hunts/Palmer Raids:
Nativist raids on suspected communists organized by
Article Ten of the League of
Nations: called for the support of a League member
if an aggressive nation attacked, conflicted with
constitution by declaration of war without Congress