Education

Cohoes Homecoming Program Cover, World War I, June 8-9, 1919


Historical Context
The end of World War I came on November 11, 1918, Armistice Day. Germany signed an armistice, or ceasefire, and the two sides began to negotiate the terms of the peace treaty. Even though the Treaty of Versailles would not be signed until June 28, 1919, American soldiers began their gradual return home.

The end of World War I saw the beginning of the season of “Welcome Home” celebrations. For the most part, Americans were proud of the soldiers who had served overseas and defeated the threat to democracy. The communities of Upstate New York were no exception. Small towns throughout the state organized local celebrations to honor members of their community who had served in the World War.
 
Essential Question
How are soldiers honored by their communities?
Check for Understanding
Identify the purpose of this program and explain how the community felt about its soldiers returning home.
[click to enlarge]
Welcome Home Celebration in Honor of the Men of Cohoes Who Served Our Country, New York State Archives, NYSA_A0412-78_B01_F15_CohoesHomecoming
Document Description
Cohoes Homecoming Program Cover, World War I, June 8-9, 1919.
Questions
  1. How did the people of Cohoes, NY honor their World War I veterans?
Historical Challenge
Research the homecoming of Vietnam soldiers in the 1970s. Compare their experience to the one of a World War I soldier in 1919.
Interdisciplinary Connections
Art: Design a program cover for a welcome home celebration for troops from Iraq or Afghanistan.
English Language Arts: Write an article for the local paper describing your experience at this welcome home celebration in Cohoes in 1919.
Resources
  1. Gilbert, Martin. The First World War. Harper Collins: New York, 1995.