previous arrow
next arrow
previous arrow
next arrow

Sync Call for Wednesday January 20 at 12pm EST
Newspaper with headline "President Orders Pershing to Invade Mexico", circa March 1916
Please update your Flash Player to view content.

News at a Glance

1. 10th Commission Meeting - January 25

2. Memorial Design Competition Winner Announcement - January 25

Read more below!


Help the WW1CC!

  1. Donate! Go to our donations page.
  2. Send us interns! Direct anyone you know who is interested to our Internship webpage.
  3. Help with state and regional organization! Let Andrew McGreal know and he will send you information on how to get involved.
  4. Shop at SMILE.AMAZON.COM! Enter the "United States Foundation for the Commemoration of the World Wars" as your charitable organization.
  5. Wear official WW1 commemorative merchandise with pride! Head over to the Commission shop for a full selection.

News and Announcements:

10th Commission Meeting

The next meeting of the WWI Centennial Commission will be on Monday, January 25, at 10 am. The main agenda item for this meeting is a Commissioner vote on the design competition jury’s recommended design concept for the National WWI Memorial at Pershing Park.

PLEASE NOTE- the Commission meeting has changed venues. It will not be held at the Jones Day Law Firm at 51 Louisiana Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001, not at the WWI Centennial Commission's national offices on G St as originally planned. Please email Meredith Carr for details if you plan to attend in person.

Memorial Design Competition Winner Announcement on January 25

After the Commission meeting, we will hold a press conference at the National Press Club to announce the winner of the National WWI Memorial at Pershing Park design competition. The press conference will start promptly at 2 pm EST in the First Amendment Room. We invite and encourage everyone to come to our big announcement!

Along with all of our Commissioners, in attendance we will have:

  • Congressman Emanuel Cleaver and Congressman Kevin Yoder, both active supporters of the WWI Centennial Commission
  • Mrs. Sandra S. Pershing, Special Advisor to the WWICC
  • General Russel Honore, US Foundation for the Commemoration of the World Wars Board Member
  • Mr. Ken Clarke, Executive Director of the Pritzker Military Museum and Library in Chicago- our founding sponsor
  • Senior Leadership from both the American Legion and the VFW

Members of the Media: All major national outlets have been invited. We will be sharing the day’s events on all of our social media sites- so follow the announcement on FB, Twitter, Instagram and Periscope!

How you can help:
Our press annonuncement is being picked up by outlets across the country- just last night the St. Louis Post Dispatch posted a nice piece on the competition and upcoming announcement.

If you have a contact at your local media outlet or network affiliate, please feel free to share our media advisory with them. Our main point of contact for all media is Chris Isleib - please keep him posted on any leads!

Please remember that even with the perfect design, we can’t build a memorial without donations. The Memorial is estimated to cost around $25 million and that figure will change depending on the winner. We can’t hope to complete the memorial by the centennial of Armistice Day if we don’t have enough money. We will need all that cash in hand before the end of 2017 to make that due date. Every dollar donated will be matched by our founding sponsor, the Pritzker Military Museum and Library. You can make this memorial a reality by making a donation to the Memorial Fund. These veterans deserve a memorial. We can build it.

Updates from the States

Volunteer for state outreach. Contact Andrew McGreal if you are willing to help.

Collaboration Call
Two weeks from tomorrow, on Thursday February 4, the State Outreach Team will host its monthly Collaboration Call. The focus of this call will be 'Archives and the Centennial' - how they can commemorate WW1 and how others can use them to commemorate the war. Our panelists will include Mitch Yockelson from the National Archives and Record Administration, Graham Neely from the Alabama State Archives, and a third to-be-determined panelists.

If you would like to be added to the Collaboration call roster, email Andrew McGreal.

WW1 Commemorative Merchandise

The WW1CC merchandise store is open on our website! Go online to get your own fine-crafted piece of WW1 commemorative merchandise and to support the Commission all at once. We have an exciting and varied line of products available for purchase - check it out today!

DISPATCH Newsletter

The Commission publishes a weekly newsletter, the DISPATCH. If you’re not receiving this and want to, sign up on our Commission Subscription webpage.


The Great War Channel

Would you like to see some great videos on YouTube about WWI? Check out The Great War Channel. Posting multiple times a week, ‘The Great War’ shows you the history of the First World War in the four years from 1914 to 1918. The host, Indy, takes you back week by week and shows you what was going on in the past. Please subscribe to see these great posts. Their latest videos are:

German Uniforms of World War 1 : THE GREAT WAR Special

Published on Jan 18, 2016. From the iconic Pickelhaube to the almost legendary Stahlhelm and the field grey color, German military uniforms of World War 1 are instantly recognizable. But there is more to them than just the spiky leather helmet that was often used in enemy propaganda. In our new special episode we are talking about the details of the German uniforms in the First World War.

Battle of Mojkovac & The Biggest Artillery Gun in World War 1 : OUT OF THE TRENCHES

Published on Jan 16, 2016. Indy sits in the chair of wisdom again to answer your questions about World War 1. This week we are talking about the Battle of Mojkovac and the Paris Guns.

The Invasion Of Montenegro - The End of Gallipoli : THE GREAT WAR - Week 77

Published on Jan 14, 2016. It already started around Christmas but this week the evacuation of Gallipoli is complete. While the evacuation was a success, the overall defeat is inarguable for the British. On top of that the Ottomans can now send 40.000 soldiers to the siege of Kut in Mesopotamia where the British are still awaiting relieve. At the same time the Austro-Hungarian Army starts its invasion of Montenegro and the Western Front is still quietly awaiting the offensive at Verdun.


The Great War 100 Years Ago

Presented by Mr. Mike Hanlon - WorldWar1.com

The Great War 100 Years Ago: American and the War During 1916

Newspaper with headline "Big Munitions Explosion at Black Tom" circa July 1916

In 1916 America was not yet a belligerent in the War, but it was deeply involved.

The German Submarine Menace Continues
The sinking of French Ferry Sussex with 50 Dead followed by Wilson's threat of breaking diplomatic relations leads to Sussex Pledge of 4 May 1916 promising no sinking of passenger ships, and merchant ships would be sunk only if presence of weapons established by a search and the safety of passengers and crew respected. This takes the submarine matter off the table for the rest of 1916.

Espionage and Sabotage in the U.S.
-July 30th German Saboteurs Blow Up Black Tom munitions works in NJ
-Great Hindu Spy Ring, American Branch operated out of the German Consulate in San Francisco

American Volunteers are Playing Visible Roles in the War
-May 18th - Kiffin Rockwell of Asheville, NC, and the Lafayette Escadrille is the First American to shoot down an enemy aircraft.
-Many medical volunteers and ambulance drivers would become involved in the Battle of Verdun.

They bring the war to America through their reports and letters home

-President Wilson Endorses Preparedness on Jan 27th; parades and events are conducted throughout the year. Over 100,000 parade in New York and Chicago. This activity generates and Anti-Preparedness Movement which adapted the 1915 hit "I Didn't Raise My Boy to Be a Soldier."
-July 22nd Terror in San Francisco,10 killed in Bombing at the Preparedness Day Parade

Military Reform and Expansion
Declaring that America required "reasonable preparedness" to protect national honor and Western hemisphere security, President Wilson sent Congress what, after extraordinary wrangling and bargaining, would become the National Defense Act of June 3, 1916, and the Naval Appropriations Act of August 29, both giving preparedness advocates most, though not all, of what they wanted. The Army's strength was doubled to 216,000 men and 11,450 officers; the ranks of its generals climbed from 36 to 54; Navy capital ships were doubled to 60; a Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) was created for colleges; and the militia, to be called the National Guard, was boosted to a potential 457,000 (with significance, supervised closely by the Regular Army), would take an oath to the United States as well as to the state in which each unit was raised, and could be ordered into national service by the president in an emergency. Additionally, the president in wartime could take over the nation's factories.

Relations with Mexico
The ongoing interest in the Mexican Civil War leads eventually to the Punitive Expedition led by General Pershing. March 14, 1916, to February 7, 1917

Presidential Election of 1916
-Charles Evans Hughes for the Republicans campaigned against Wilson's apparent pacifist stance, arguing for a program of greater mobilization and preparedness, and attacked Wilson's interventions in the Mexican Civil War.
-Wilson was helped by his campaign slogan, "He kept us out of war. " But he made one very provocative comment during the campaign to the effect that sooner or later, another global conflict will occur – and, “this is the last war of the kind, or of any kind that involves the world, that the United States can keep out of.”

Presidential Peace Overtures
-In May 1916, Wilson publicly endorsed U.S. participation in a post-war international security organization as a way to entice the belligerents into welcoming a U.S. mediation initiative.
-He followed this gambit up in December with a formal call for the belligerents to state the exact objects for which they fought.
-In January 1917, gave an impassioned plea that the war end with a “peace without victory” and the establishment of a “League of Peace” that would include the United States.

Reading: Wilson and the Progressive Era by Arthur Link.

Web: America's Turn from Neutrality to Intervention, 1914-1917 by Michael E. Hanlon

Next Week: New Strategies for the Western and Eastern Fronts


Upcoming Events

If you have an agenda item to include, please email Andrew McGreal by the Monday before the next Sync Call.

If you have an event for our calendar, please submit it here.

For a listing of events and exhibits, please visit the Commission Events Page




"Pershing" Donors

$5 Million +

Founding Sponsor
PritzkerMML Logo

Starr Foundation Logo

The Lilly Endowment