World War I and the 1920s
1. President Wilson outlined the war’s objectives with his Fourteen Points. They set the goals of free seas, self-determination after the war, and establishing a body to prevent future wars.
2. A military draft was instituted, the first since the Civil War.
3. Women went to work more than they’d ever done and black soldiers were drafted into the military into segregated units.
4. The Americans focussed their military effort in protecting Paris from the Germans.
5. At the Treaty of Versailles,Wilson agreed to allow England
and Franceto punish Germanyfor the war. In return, they agreed to start Wilson’s“League of Nations.”
6. However, the US Senate rejected the Treaty/League. They didn’t wish to turn over America’s decision-making to a foreign body like the League of Nations.
7. A “red scare” struck America in the 20s. Fear of communism
resonated through society and was fueled by mail bombings and illustrated by the Sacco and Vanzetti executions.
8 Anti-immigration ran high as well. Laws were passed to limit immigration, and specifically, to limit “New Immigrants” from Italy and Poland.
9 The “Scopes Monkey Trial” illustrated the new controversy of evolution vs. creation.
10 Businesses had a good run in the 20s and consumers bought products wildly, often on credit or with an installment plan.
11Three Republican presidents were pro-business. The economy and consumers got to running too fast, andcoupled with over-buying in the stock market, initiated the Stock Crash and Great Depression.
12. President Harding had several scandals underneath him, notably the Teapot Dome Scandal over oil.
13 America entered into policies of “isolationism” whereby the US
just wanted to look after herself and leave Europealone.
14 Coolidge was very pro-business, following a “hands-off” approach by government.
15 Hoover held the same ideas with his “rugged individualism” phrase. When the Stock Crash hit and Great Depression started, Hooverwas very reluctant and slow to take government action.