World War I was known at the time as the Great War and "the war to end all wars." Countries stretching across the globe got involved, mobilizing over 70 million military personnel. The First World War saw unprecedented levels of technological innovation. It was the first modern mechanized industrial war in which material resources and manufacturing capability were as consequential as the skill of the troops.

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Allies Sopwith F.1 Camel Object Sopwith 7F.1 Snipe Object De Havilland DH-4 Object Voisin Type 8 Object Nieuport 28C.1 Object Spad XVI Object Spad XIII "Smith IV" Object Caudron G.4 Object Curtiss JN-4D Jenny Object Curtiss N-9H Object Felixstowe (NAF) F-5-L (hull only) Object Lincoln-Standard H.S. (Modified Standard J-1) Object Central Powers Fokker D.VII Object Pfalz D.XII Object Albatros D.Va Object Halberstadt CL.IV Object


Edward Rickenbacker

Flying Ace

Quentin Roosevelt

Fallen Pilot

Eugene Bullard

First African-American Military Pilot to Fly in Combat

Ruth Law

First Woman in an Army Aviation Uniform



Before World War I, war art largely depicted heroic military leaders and romanticized battles, done long after the fact, far from the battlefield. The First World War marked a turning point with the appearance of artwork intended to capture the moment in a realistic way, by first-hand participants.

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Movies have always shaped our cultural memory of historical events, and World War I has been a rich subject for filmmakers. The films explore a range of topics, including the reality of fighting in the trenches, aerial combat, the relationship between commanders and troops, and the psychological effects of war. 

About the First Significant Anti-War Movie

American attitudes changed dramatically during World War I, a shift reflected in popular music of the time, from 1915's anti-war “I Didn’t Raise My Boy To Be a Soldier” to 1918's patriotic “Over There.” Listen to a three-piece ensemble performs popular songs of World War I to trace this change in American attitudes.

Educational Videos

How The Great War Still Influences Today Legacy, Letters, and Lace