Armistice Day

100 Years Since the End of World War I

Gina Wiste ‘19, Features Section Editor

This past Sunday, November 11, marked the 100th anniversary of the end of the First

World War. On this date in 1918, Germany signed an agreement for peace which ended four years of bloody, brutal warfare the likes of which the world had never seen before. The signing was coordinated to take place at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in order to further solidify the importance of this date, as many dignitaries hoped it would usher in a new era, free of warfare.

Unfortunately, these hopes were not entirely realized, but that does not mean that every aspect of the armistice was in vain. The aftermath of the harsh postwar treatment of Germany lead to a new era of global cooperation and rebuilding after the Second World War. Chemical weapons, the largest killer of the First World War after disease, were outlawed internationally following the war.

Thus, World War I shaped the world we live in today in more ways than we can imagine, both good and bad. As such, remembrance of those who gave their lives in the conflict has been an integral part of these last 100 years. In Britain, millions wear poppy designs on their clothing for the whole of November to commemorate veterans. In the week leading up to this hundredth anniversary, the moat of the Tower of London was lit with torches in remembrance. Right here in Chicago, the bells of all the city churches rang out at eleven o’clock in the morning on November 11, just as they did on that fateful day in 1918.