Letter from Andrew A. Manning to William Sinkler Manning on the inevitability of U.S. involvment in World War I, 25 March 1917
Andrew A. Manning wrote this letter to his father William Sinkler Manning. In this letter, he writes about the inevitability of the United States involvement in the ongoing war in Europe. At this time, the war in Europe had been raging since 1914. He suggests, should war be declared, that he would request a leave of absence from his job in order be of service to his country. He notes the strong pro-German sentiment in Walhalla, South Carolina. Historically, Walhalla was settled by German immigrants, mostly from Hamburg, Germany, in 1849.
With the outbreak of war, the United States pursued a policy of isolationism. At all costs, the United States hoped to avoid military involvement and entangling alliances with belligerent countries. As a military strategy, Germany engaged in unrestricted submarine warfare with ships passing through the Atlantic Ocean. With the sinking of the British liner Luisitana in 1915 and death of 128 Americans onboard, the stirrings of war pervaded the American people. The final catalyst was the Zimmerman telegram in 1917. A telegram between United States’ German ambassador Arthur Zimmerman to Mexico’s German Ambassador Heinrich von Eckardt authorized a military alliance with Mexico should the United States enter the war. With the publication of this telegram and continued submarine warfare on U.S. ships, the United States entered the war on April 6, 1917.
Andrew A. Manning to William Sinkler Manning. 25 March 1917. William Sinkler Manning Papers, Manuscripts Division, South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina.
Standard 5-3: The student will demonstrate an understanding of major domestic and foreign developments that contributed to the United States’ becoming a world power.
Indicator 5-3.6 Summarize actions by the United States that contributed to the rise of this nation as a world power, including the annexation of new territory following the Spanish-American War and the role played by the United States in the building of the Panama Canal and in World War I.
Standard 7-5: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the causes and effects of world conflicts in the early twentieth century.
Indicator 7-5.1 Explain the causes and key events of World War I, including the rise of nationalism, ethnic and ideological conflicts in different regions, political and economic rivalries, the human costs of the mechanization of war, the Russian Revolution, and the entry of the United States into the War.
Standard GS-5: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the effects of economic, geographic, and political interactions that took place throughout the world during the early twentieth century.
Indicator GS-5.1 Summarize the causes of World War I, including political and economic rivalries, ethnic and ideological conflicts, and nationalism and propaganda.
Standard USHC-6: The student will demonstrate an understanding of foreign developments that contributed to the United States’ emergence as a world power in the twentieth century.
Indicator USHC-6.4 Outline the causes and course of World War I, focusing on the involvement of the United States, including the effects of nationalism, ethnic and ideological conflicts, and Woodrow Wilson’s leadership in the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations.