Activity 1B: Background:  World War I & Russian Revolution

Students will review basic facts about the U.S. involvement in World War I

Standard: Strand 1- American History

Grade 7

Concept 7: Emergence of the Modern U.S.

PO 13. Describe important events associated with World War I :

a. anti-German feelings in the United States

High School: Strand 1 - American History

Concept 7: Emergence of the Modern U.S.

PO 3. Analyze events which caused a transformation of the United States during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

f: World War I

g: Red Scare/Socialism

High School: Strand 2- World History

Concept 8: World at War

PO 1. Examine the causes of World War I

PO 3. World War I and its aftermath:

a. Russian Revolution


If students have not studied World War I, they will need some background information about why the U.S. entered the war. They will also need information about the reaction of the United States to the Russian Revolution and what impact both of these major historic events had upon the 1917 copper strikes in Arizona.

The following activities can be completed in two class sessions and provide students with basic information.

1.  Have students read  America's Turn From Neutrality to Intervention, 1914-1917 by Michael E. Hanlon and list the reasons the U.S. entered World War I. (This was published in Relevance: The Quarterly Journal of the Great War Society, Vol 1, no. 2, Spring 1992)

2.  Students will list the reasons why the U.S. entered the war according to the following categories: German military actions, allied propaganda, liberal thinking, business interests, labor interests, President Wilson's change, and the Russian Revolution.

3.  Have students read The Red Scare by Paul Burnett. Discuss how fear affects behavior, e.g. calling frankfurters "hot dogs" and the German's "Huns."  Why do people react this way? Can the students think of other occasions where Americans has reacted in a similar way?

4.  Discuss with students how the entrance to the war made copper an important mineral needed for munitions and other war related products. Business and mining found it profitable to create products for the war effort - business and labor income increased but the working man's wages did not increase at the same rate. Radical labor groups viewed the war as only benefiting the wealthy and protested war efforts.


World War I

Russian Revolution (includes The Red Scare by Paul Burnett)

Sources to Consult

"America's Turn from Neutrality to Intervention, 1914-1917