Asian Indians in World War I America
Vande Mataram in the USA
Vande Mataram: A prayer to Mother (India)
When the United States entered in World War I in April 1917, only a few tens of thousands of immigrants from colonial India lived in the nation, most on the West Coast. Yet this tiny community received enormous press coverage immediately after the declaration of war. The spotlight came from a wave of arrests of Indian Nationalists and Germans accused of violating the United States neutrality laws by conspiring on American soil with Germany to overthrow the British Raj.The conspiracy charges led to the Hindu–German Conspiracy Trial—at the time the longest and most expensive trial ever held in the United States.
But while the press was focused on covering the plot and trial, many Asian Indian immigrants were serving in the United States armed forces. Their record of service and their struggle for civil rights after WWI led eventually to full citizenship rights for themselves and their descendants.
This site looks at both the Hindu–German Conspiracy Trial and the service of individual Indians to America during the Great War.