The American History Podcast

A Program Of Virginia Foundation for the Humanities


History Behind the Headlines: Armistice Day

November 11 is the 100thanniversary of Armistice Day. It is an international commemoration of the armistice signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany, ending hostilities on the Western Front on the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918.

Armistice Day sits as a historical anchor for collective memory of the war and its vast and varied consequences. World War I affected Americans uniquely, far from the battlefields of Europe, as it sparked debates about the meaning of free speech, government repression, and how the war should be remembered.

We have assembled three episodes that explore the American experience of the war, its impact into the 20thcentury, and the continued significance of Armistice Day a century later.

Additionally, our friends at are giving the public free access to some WWI-era papers from England, Canada, and Australia. It’s a great database of primary sources, including images and articles, and also provides a unique way of interacting with history.

To gain free access November 8-12, visit



Over There: America Enters WWI

On this episode of BackStory, Brian, Joanne, and Ed discuss how the oft-forgotten World War I set the stage for the American century.

The Great War: The Long Shadow of WWI

On this episode of BackStory, Ed, Brian and Peter explore some of the ways World War I affected Americans far beyond the battlefields of Europe — from debates about the meaning of free speech, to the fight over how the war would be remembered.

The War to End All Wars: Remembering WWI

On this episode of BackStory, Brian and Nathan reflect on how, 100 years later, “the war to end all wars” is still with Americans.

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