World War I

The USS Jacob Jones, an American destroyer, sank off the southwest coast of England in December 1917.

Divers Recover Bell From Wreck of American Destroyer Sunk in World War I

Sixty-four American sailors died when a German torpedo hit the USS "Jacob Jones" on December 6, 1917

Verdun, Félix Edouard Vallotton, 1917

As Empires Clashed During World War I, a Global Media Industry Brought the Conflict's Horrors to the Public

An exhibition at LACMA traces the roots of modern media to the Great War, when propaganda mobilized the masses, and questions whether the brutal truths of the battlefield can ever really be communicated

The Smithsonian's Cher Ami will play a role in tonight's multimedia performance “November 1918: The Great War and The Great Gatsby” at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Cher Ami, the Iconic World War I Carrier Pigeon, Makes His Debut at Carnegie Hall

A treasured Smithsonian artifact is reputed to be the heroic savior of the embattled “Lost Battalion” on the Western Front

Hitler stands with co-conspirators Alfred Rosenberg and Friedrich Weber during the Beer Hall Putsch in November 1923.

Before He Rose to Power, Adolf Hitler Staged a Coup and Went to Prison

The Beer Hall Putsch was a spectacular failure. It also set the stage for Nazi Germany

The National Museum of the United States Air Force is on the grounds of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.

How an Ohio Cow Pasture Gave Rise to a Monument to Aviation History

The National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio, celebrates 100 years

Bill Milner was jet skiing along the Neches River when he ran into something that turned out to be a World War I shipwreck.

Drought in Texas Reveals World War I Shipwreck

A local man happened upon the wreckage while jet skiing earlier this month

Seventy-eight years after the end of World War II, hospital trains are an oft-forgotten chapter in U.S. military history.

What Happened on the Trains That Brought Wounded World War II Soldiers Home?

The logistics of moving patients across the U.S. by rail were staggeringly complex

Sergeant Henry Johnson (standing, holding bouquet of flowers) and the Harlem Hellfighters at a 1918 victory parade in New York City

Louisiana Army Base Formerly Named for Confederate General Now Honors Black WWI Hero

Sergeant Henry Johnson received a posthumous Medal of Honor recognizing his bravery in battle in France

When 72-year-old Boucher gave his age as 48 to an army doctor, the man smiled and said, “And then some, like myself.”

The 72-Year-Old Who Lied About His Age to Fight in World War I

A Civil War veteran, John William Boucher was one of the oldest men on the ground during the Great War

In January 1923, a dollar cost 17,000 marks. In December, the exchange rate topped out at 4.2 trillion marks to the dollar.

How Hyperinflation Heralded the Fall of German Democracy

In 1923, the collapse of the Weimar Republic's economy impoverished millions and gave Adolf Hitler his first chance at seizing power

In 1935, Josephine Herbst was, in the words of biographer Elinor Langer, “a leading lady” of the country’s radical left.

How Josephine Herbst, 'Leading Lady' of the Left, Chronicled the Rise of Fascism

During the interwar years, the American journalist reported on political unrest in Cuba, Germany and Spain

Woodrow Wilson and his second wife, Edith, in 1916

How Edith Wilson Kept Herself—and Her Husband—in the White House

A new book about the first lady reveals how she and the ailing President Woodrow Wilson silenced their critics

Sister André, born Lucile Randon in 1904, died on January 17, 2023, at the age of 118.

World’s Oldest Known Person, a French Nun, Dies at 118

Sister André survived both world wars, the 1918 influenza pandemic and even a Covid-19 diagnosis at the age of 116

The 1923 Rosewood massacre resulted in the deaths of six Black people and two white vigilantes.

How History Forgot Rosewood, a Black Town Razed by a White Mob

A century ago, a false accusation sparked the destruction of the Florida community

J. Edgar Hoover (second from left) stands behind Franklin Delano Roosevelt as the president signs a bill in 1934.

How World War II Helped Forge the Modern FBI

Under President Franklin D. Roosevelt, J. Edgar Hoover consolidated immense power—and created the beginnings of the surveillance state

American ambassador Joseph C. Grew (left) meets with Japanese Foreign Minister Teijiro Toyoda (right) in October 1941, two months before the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The American Ambassador Who Tried to Prevent Pearl Harbor

A new book explores the diplomatic efforts of Joseph C. Grew, who was assigned to Tokyo between 1932 and 1942

Paula, Sam and Sol Messinger aboard the M.S. St. Louis in May 1939. The U.S. denied the ship entry, forcing its 937 passengers to return to Europe. More than a quarter of these refugees were later killed in the Holocaust.

Why Was America So Reluctant to Take Action on the Holocaust?

A new Ken Burns documentary examines the U.S.' complex, often shameful response to the rise of Nazism and the plight of Jewish refugees

Pages from Plastic Surgery of the Face by Harold Gillies

Inside a Trailblazing Surgeon's Quest to Reconstruct WWI Soldiers' Disfigured Faces

A new book profiles Harold Gillies, whose efforts to restore wounded warriors' visages laid the groundwork for modern plastic surgery

Communist revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg speaking at a conference in Stuttgart, Germany, in 1907

The 20th-Century History of Anti-Semitic Attacks on Jewish Politicians

Russian rhetoric against Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy echoes the language directed toward Jewish leaders in post-WWI Europe

According to author Christopher A. Thomas, the dedication "was a microcosm of the strained race relations of its day, marked by the rhetoric of good intentions and the behavior of bigotry."

A Century Ago, the Lincoln Memorial's Dedication Underscored the Nation's Racial Divide

Seating was segregated, and the ceremony's only Black speaker was forced to drastically revise his speech to avoid spreading "propaganda"

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