World War I

The “Great War” began July 28, 1914 when Archduke Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated and ended November 11, 1918. This was the “war to end all wars.” The war began between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. It expanded to include the Allied Forces: Great Brittan, France, Russia, Italy, Romania, Japan, and the United States fighting against Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, and the Ottoman Empire. The United States was initially neutral and traded with both sides but entered the war after its merchant ships were sunk by German submarines, most notably the British ship Lusitania carrying many Americans on a voyage from New York to Liverpool. 

The United States formally declared War on Germany on April 6, 1917 after the Lusitania and four other U. S. ships were sunk by German submarines. About 70 million people were mobilized into various militaries making World War I one of the largest wars in history. Airplanes and tanks were introduced into warfare; WWI was characterized by trench warfare. It is estimated that there were nine million military deaths and ten million civilian deaths. Twenty-one million soldiers were wounded. Genocide and the Influenza pandemic killed millions of people. In mid-1918 American Expeditionary Forces reached a strength of 4.7 million soldiers. The war ended on November 11, 1918 when Germany surrendered. The United States suffered 116,708 military deaths in World War I. The Panhandle lost 186 service members in World War I.

We encourage our veterans and their families to contact our Veterans Referral Coordination Center at the War Memorial if they need any type of assistance. The Texas Panhandle War Memorial is proud to partner with Combined Arms and the Texas Veterans Network to provide excellent service referrals for veterans and their families. The mission of the War Memorial is to help veterans and their families by assessing veteran and family member needs and finding appropriate service providers to meet those needs. As a Combined Arms Community Leader, the War Memorial has access to the vast array of services that fall under the umbrella of Combined Arms and the Texas Veterans Network. This is a collaborative effort across Texas. 

Whatever the veteran’s need – employment, housing, financial assistance, reintegration, transportation, counseling, or general information – The War Memorial will find the right provider for them. This service is free; the veterans have earned it. Some benefits are available to the veteran’s family. Our navigators are trained to know the resource providers in our community and can connect the veteran or family member with those services. We will follow up and ensure that the veteran or family member and the resource connect, and their needs are being met.

Come and visit our museum of military artifacts, displays, and photographs from WWI to Afghanistan. The War Memorial has the only Military Chapel in the Panhandle, available for weddings and funerals. Our high-tech Education Center features five interactive computer kiosks, each with information on 11 U. S. wars. We also have oral histories of the Vietnam War and World War II. Visit our gift shop for military tee shirts, ball caps, and military memorabilia. 

We invite you to visit our Museum or visit our Navigators Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Our telephone number is 806-350-8387. Follow us on Facebook and visit our website www.TexasPanhandleWarMemorial.com 

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