BioMelina Druga is a freelance journalist, history enthusiast and author. Her focus is on the period 1890-1920 with a particular interest in WW1 and how the war changed the lives of ordinary people. In addition to her books, Melina blogs mostly about history on her website with the goal of educating those who know little or nothing about the topic.
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1915 - A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WW1 part 2
Spring 1915 is consumed with two traumatic events.
Canada endures a trial by fire at the Second Battle of Ypres. While the Canadians are ultimately successful – to the pride of their countrymen – the battle marks the first widespread use of chlorine gas. The gas moved across the ground like a yellow-green fog, damaged the mucus membranes and caused asphyxiation.
Meanwhile, Americans are rocked by the torpedoing of the Lusitania, an ocean liner that – like the Titanic – was thought to be unsinkable. The sinking cost the lives of nearly 1,200 people including women, children and babies, and split the United States into two camps – those who wanted war and those who still believed in neutrality.
1918 - A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WWI part 5
The war ends on Nov. 11, 1918, causing spontaneous and boisterous parties to erupt in cities throughout the United States and Canada.
Joy follows the deadliest month in the Spanish Flu Pandemic, a pandemic that would kill more Americans and Canadians than the war.
1914 - A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WW1 part 1
Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the Austrian-Hungarian Empire, and his wife Sophie were shot and killed by Slavic nationalist Gavrilo Princip on June 28, 1914, in Sarajevo, Bosnia. The event, at first, was of little more than regional interest, but soon it became clear war clouds were enveloping Europe.
In Canada, the news was met with excitement and pride. The nation committed to Great Britain 20,000 to 30,000 soldiers within two to three weeks, and there is a surplus of recruits.
Meanwhile, in the United States, the government is focused on isolationism and neutrality. Capitalists and newspapers schemed about how Americans could profit from a war, and tourists refused to change their plans.
1917 - A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WW1
Like two years earlier, 1917 is a chaotic spring.
Canadian troops easily take their objective at the Battle of Vimy Ridge. The battle would later be called Canada’s coming-of-age. While newspapers at the time do not use that term, there is a definite sense that something important has occurred.
United States President Woodrow Wilson ran for re-election on the pledge that he kept the U.S. out the war. However, as submarine warfare increases, Wilson decides now is the time to enter the conflict.
1916 - A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WW1
The Battle of the Somme drags on in Europe and witnesses a new weapon of war – the tank. The battle receives sparse coverage back home, however, as Canadians are preoccupied with a variety of home front problems.
Meanwhile, the United States goes to the polls in a close election that pits Democrats against Republicans and Republicans against Democrats and Progressives. Suffragists also cease the moment and hope to get universal suffrage for women on the parties’ planks.
A Tale of Two Nations: Canada, U.S. and WWI
A Tale of Two Nations is the story of North American countries that found themselves embroiled in an European war – one by circumstance and one by choice. It discusses two pivotal events from each year of the Great War – one from an American perspective and one from a Canadian one – and reveals how newspapers at the time handled wartime coverage.
Using contemporary newspapers as its main sources, A Tale of Two Nations weaves together a story that does not have the benefit of hindsight and analysis. It’s chaotic, incomplete and often inaccurate, but it does paint a picture of war as our ancestors would have known it.
Enterprising Women: A Practical Guide to Starting Your First Business
Are you an enterprising woman? Enterprising Women is a guide to the basics of launching a startup. The subjects discussed in include deciding what type of business, planning, marketing, and fighting inner demons.
Enterprising Women: Practical Advice for First Time Entrepreneurs
Realistic, while being both inspiring and encouraging, Enterprising Women shares the stories of dozens female entrepreneurs as they give advice to those hoping to following in their footsteps.