of the War

WWI Review
General Notes
 Remember to use Historical perspective – put yourself in their shoes
 Relate all questions back to Canada – why is it important to Canada
 Always give specific examples in your answers
 Print (write) neatly – I need to be able to understand your answers
 Make sure all questions are answered – use these as your study notes
 Study over-all arcs (Independence, role of women, French-English relations, role of
Flag of Canada until 1967
 Red Ensign
Indirect Causes
Militarism: [arms race] each country wanted to show the others how it was a lot stronger, by
building dreadnoughts, and strengthening their armies
Alliances: different counties formed alliances with others, so that there were two major
Nationalism: some people in countries like Britain, France and Germany felt that they need
to defended their country’s pride, and people were enraged when someone insulted their
Imperialism: the great powers were competing for colonies over the sea. Britain feared
Germany by expanding the colonies in Africa
Direct Cause
Assassination: World War I was triggered by the assassination of the Archduke Franz
Ferdinand [He was the Archduke of Austria]. Assassinated by Gavrilo Princip of the Serbian
group Black Hand
Start of the War
 Schlieffen Plan – Germany’s plan to violate Belgium’s
neutrality to get to France – huge mistake since Belgium was
allied with Britain and Britain declared war. Once Britain was
involved, so were its colonies including Canada.
Triple Entente: England, France, Russia
Triple Alliance: Germany, Austria, Italy
Area between the two front lines: No Man’s Land
Beaumont-Hamel (Battle of the Somme)
 Newfoundland Regiment (still part of Britain)
 Greatest single day loss of life due to outdated tactics and the machine-gun
 Canadians start to question British leadership and tactics
 First chlorine gas attack, Canadians peed in their handkerchiefs
 Canadians held the line, more experienced soldiers fled
 Earned respect of allies & foes alike
Vimy Ridge:
 Major success for Canadian Army – first time together as an army
 Under Canadian Arthur Currie
 Used new tactics: everyone trained, rolling barrage, tunnels, massive shelling
 New artillery innovations under Andrew McNaughton
 Canada gained independence on the international stage
on the basis of their fighting reputation
Trench Life -You do NOT need to draw a trench
but you do need to know what life was like for the
 Trench Foot/Rats/Lice - diseases
 Shell Shock - PTSD
 Mud/Water – appalling conditions
 Shelling – Constant mental & physical stress
New Technology
 Machine-Gun – main cause of trench warfare – one gun could kills dozens at a time.
Responsible for most of the casualties in trench warfare
 Tank – unsuccessful at first (too slow, tracks fell off) eventually spearheaded Allied
 Gas – considered inhumane & non-effective (killed as many of your own soldiers due
to shifting winds)
 Zeppelins – balloons used to drop bombs or gather intelligence. Silent but easy to
shoot down
War in the Air
 Mostly reconnaissance and intelligence gathering at the beginning of the war,
eventually outfitted with machine guns
 Life expectancy measured in weeks
 Ace = 5 “kills”
 Canada’s best ace with 72 kills: Billy Bishop
 Over all Ace with 80 kills: German Red Baron
War at Sea
 German navy no match for the British – Battle of Jutland the only battle
 More successful attacking convoys with U-boats
 Allies sunk or captured more than ½ the U-boats to win the war at sea
Russian Revolution
 1917 the Red Russians (Communists) overthrew the Russian monarchy and withdrew
troops from the war
 Closed the Eastern Front & released thousands of German prisoners to fight on the
Western Front
 Considered a betrayal
 Beginning of decades of fear – Red Scare
Robert Borden – Prime Minister
 Military Service Act - conscription
 Military Voters Act – gave the vote to men & women serving overseas
 Wartime Elections Act – extended the vote to female relatives of men serving
 Introduced income tax
Sam Hughes – Minister of Militia
 Corrupt – gave is buddies war contracts
 Responsible for the Macadam shovel and the Ross Rifle –
both useless in war
Arthur Currie
 Commanded at Vimy under Julian Byng
 Commanded the entire Canadian army afterwards
 Knighted after Vimy
Andrew McNaughton
 Artillery Commander at Vimy
 Responsible for many artillery innovations
 Became Commander of the Canadian Corps In WWII
Conscription Crisis
 Military Services Act of 1917
 Severely divided the country – French/English, City/Country
 Borden stacked the deck with the Military Voters Act (gave the vote to serving men &
women) and the Wartime Elections Act (gave to vote to female relatives of serving
soldiers) both pro-conscription groups
Immigrants & Minorities
 Black Canadians were not allowed to fight – could only join the No. 2 Construction
 Immigrants had to register with authorities
 War Measures Act of 1914 - Many lost the right to vote and some were put into
internment camps
 Japanese & Native Indians had to fight to join and then faced racism when they did
 People morally opposed to war
 Tried to start a peace movement
Treaty of Versailles
 Germany forced to surrender unconditionally
 Treaty not exactly fair – some boundaries drawn erratically (i.e. Polish corridor
splitting Germany)
 Germany lost most of its military & some territories, forced to pay huge reparations
 Forced to sign the War Guilt Clause – had to take full responsibility for war
 Many believe it set the stage for WWII
 Canada had its own seat at the table
Halifax Explosion
 1917 Mont Blanc (munitions ship) & Imo collide in Halifax Harbour
 Greatest human-made explosion in history until atomic bomb
Spanish Flu
 As soldiers went home they brought
something with them – the flu
 Worldwide pandemic – killed
between 20-40 million people –
more than died in the war
 Attacked young healthy people
 Entire families & entire villages
became ill
 Soldiers lived through 5 years of
war to come home and die of the flu
Role of Women
 Served overseas as Nursing Sisters (Bluebirds) and ambulance drivers
 Worked jobs left by men who went to war – factories, farms, business – everything
 Many earned the right to vote in 1917 (those serving & those with male relatives
serving), the rest in 1918
 Most forced to give up their jobs when the men came home
 1920 women could seek election in the House of Commons
French/English Relations
 French didn’t want to fight – felt it was an “English” war
 Most didn’t speak English – training manuals & training done initially in English only
 Initially no French-speaking battalions or Officers
 Extremely anti-conscription – riots in Montreal
 French married young
Canadian Independence
 Some independence but Canada was still a Dominion in the Commonwealth – we
went to war because England went to war
 Gained a seat in the Imperial War Cabinet (giving Canadians some voice in the war)
 Gained international respect on the backs of the soldiers
 Started the war under British command, ended under Canadian command
 Gained a seat at the Peace treaty table – no say in anything but an independent vote
 Joined the League of Nations as an independent country
Potential Essay Questions
1. Do you agree or disagree that World War II was a continuation of the First
World War? Was the treaty that ended WWI a major cause of World War II?
2. Do you agree or disagree that students in Canada should study Canadian
History EVERY year in high school?
3. Vimy Ridge happened almost 100 years ago. It has no significance to today’s
world and should be dropped from the curriculum.
4. Prime Minister Borden was right in bringing in conscription. Do you agree or
5. Do you agree that it was safer to be a pilot during WWI? Use specific examples
in your answer.