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USH 3-2

Page history last edited by Pam Merrill 3 years, 9 months ago

Oklahoma Academic Standard 3. The student will analyze the expanding role of the United States in international affairs as America was transformed into a world power in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, 1890 to 1920.

Objective 3.2  Evaluate the long-term impact of America’s entry into World War I on national politics, the economy, and society

  A. Summarize the transformation of the United States from a position of neutrality to engagement in World War I including the Zimmermann Telegram and the threats to international trade caused by unrestricted submarine warfare.  

  B. Analyze the impact of the war on the home front, including the use of propaganda, women’s increased role in industry, the marshaling of industrial production, and the Great Migration. 

  C. Analyze the institution of a draft and the suppression of individual liberties resulting in the First Red Scare, including the Palmer Raids and the Sacco-Vanzetti trials.

  D. Evaluate Wilson’s foreign policy as proposed in his Fourteen Points and the reasons for the nation’s return to isolationism highlighted by the Senate’s rejection of the League of Nations.

In a Nutshell

This objective focuses on the homefront efforts during WWI and the war’s aftermath. At the onset of WWI, America hoped to remain neutral and attempted to financially benefit from the conflict. However, unrestricted submarine warfare and the Zimmerman Telegram pushed the nation into war. Subsequently, many aspects of society were affected. Women joined the workforce in mass, African Americans migrated north to take jobs in defense industries, and civil liberties were infringed upon for the sake of the war effort.  Students should examine the impact of such societal changes during this era, as well as the public's continued desire to remain isolated from affairs in Europe.

Teacher Action 

Student Action 

  • Provide students with opportunities to develop questions about multiple historical and contemporary sources  to pursue further inquiry and investigate additional sources about the effects of World War I on American society. 

  • Assist students to analyze the impact of constitutions, laws, treaties, and international agreements in order to maintain national and international order. 

  • Describe the role of individuals and groups on historical  events and changes over time.

  • Evaluate the impact of perspectives, civic virtues, democratic principles, constitutional rights, and human rights on addressing issues and problems in society. 

Key Concepts 


  • Yellow press, trade alliances, British blockade, U-boat, convoy system

  • Allied and Central Powers

  • “Peace without victory”, nationalism, militarism

  • no man’s land, trench warfare

  • Selective Service Act, War Industries Board; Food Administration

  • First Amendment, Espionage and Sedition Acts, Schenck v. United States (1919), Women’s Peace Party 

  • Bernard Baruch, Herbert Hoover

  • League of Nations, Treaty of Versailles, reparations, “war-guilt” clause, Henry Cabot Lodge  

  • Nativism, isolationism, anarchists, the quota system

  • John L. Lewis

  • public and government fear of Communism 

  • Many students may possess prior knowledge of World War I from previous coursework, examining the conflict from a more global perspective. It is important to remind students of the limited involvement of America in this European conflict, yet recognize the impact of America's entry as a turning point for the Allied powers.

  • Most students will associate mobilization for war as focusing on military armaments and troop recruitment, neglecting to realize the many aspects of public support involved in industries, agriculture, and personal sacrifices necessary to enhance and maintain military readiness.

Instructional Resources

Access suggested instructional resources correlated to standard and objective.

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