America Enters the Fight

The Call to “Join the Fight for Liberty!”

Liberty Loan Drive to Fund the War Effort

This Liberty Bond Poster was similar to the one glued on the underside of Eddie Richenbacher’s top wing.

America Declares War: April 1917

In 1916 the number of military aircraft in the service of the United States totaled only two. There had seemed to be no need for them. Upon declaring war on Germany in April of 1917, overly optimistic Congressmen promised to “darken the skies over Europe” with American-designed, American-built aircraft. It sounded too good to be true, and it was.Americans simply could not increase aircraft production from near nothing to these unrealistic projections overnight. The declaration of war had no immediate effect on the battlefields of Europe. It would take about a year before the US was ready to ship doughboys overseas.

Widespread American Isolationism

There was no officially sanctioned aid forthcoming from the United States during the early years of World War One. The majority of the American people were perfectly content to watch the rapidly escalating European conflict safely from far across the Atlantic Ocean. The spirit of national isolationism was strongly entrenched in the heartland of the United States.

American Citizen Pilots go to War

There were those who believed that this was an indefensible policy. Many of these adventurers traveled to Europe to fight for the Allied Power’s cause, serving with the armed services of both Great Briton, and France in ground combat units, and aerial units such as the French Escadrille Americaine, and Lafayette Escadrille.

Newspaper Headline: “War Bill Signed!”