War Over There!


The remote European war began to get closer, when, on May 20, 1915, the RMS Lusitania was torpedoed by a German U-boat with a loss of American lives.  The nation was outraged but remained out of the conflict.  But by early 1917, the resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare and the discovery of a German plot to collude with Mexico against the United States, dragged the nation toward war.

On January 19, 1917, Arthur Zimmerman of the German Foreign Office sent a coded message to the German ambassador to Mexico with instructions that, should the United States enter the war, Germany would support the re-annexation to Mexico of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona in return for Mexican alliance.   British codebreakers deciphered the message and passed it along to the American government.  When President Woodrow Wilson released the text of the message, the news caused a public firestorm.

Exhibition Dates

Heroes or Corpses: Captain Truman in World War I is on display from March 10 through December 31, 2018.