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Arch Duke Francis Ferdinand and his wife Sophie, of Austria, were assassinated. This led to a series of events that triggered World War I. The war began in 1914 and ended in 1918.


(1917) The single act of shooting Ferdinand and his wife marked the beginning of the war. But there were several basic causes of World War I. These causes were: the growth of nationalism, the system of military alliances that made a balance of power, the competition for colonies and other territories, and the use of secret diplomacy.


The United States tried to remain neutral. German submarines sank unarmed passenger ships, and stories of German attacks against civilians convinced Americans to join the Allies. The United States declared war on Germany on April 6, 1917.


New weapons and new methods of warfare were developed during World War I. The machine gun appeared in the war. The British army first used a tank during the war. The submarine came into use for the first time on a large scale. Air warfare also developed in World War I. The Germans used dirigible balloons, called Zeppelins. In 1915, Germany first used poison gas.


Much of the war took place in trenches and involved hand to hand combat. The western battlefront stretched about 600 miles from the English Channel to the border of Switzerland. The eastern front extended more than 1,100 miles from the Baltic Sea to the shores of the Black Sea. The southern front ran from Switzerland to Trieste for about 320 miles.


Agreements made after the war changed the map of the world. New governments appeared in many of the countries that had been involved in the war. World War I did not settle the world’s problems. It just sowed seeds that caused the world to engage in another war less than 20 years later.


Five hundred ninety-three men from Cooper County served in the war. Of those, 49 were wounded, six killed and one taken as a Prisoner of War. Ten others died from disease and two were reported missing in action.


Company B of the 3rd Regiment Infantry National Guard from Boonville, with 92 men, served in the war under the command of Capt. Carl F. Scheidner. They were called to Federal Service on March 25, 1917.



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