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The Stars and Stripes

Training the A.E.F.

With so many new soldiers, training was obviously a concern. An early issue of the paper described advanced training offered to officers and enlisted men. The June 28, 1918, issue described training for the flyers of the new Air Service. Read these two articles to learn more about the training available to U.S. soldiers in Europe.

  • What were some of the topics or skills taught at A.E.F. University?
  • According to the writer, how was the training in Europe different from training offered back home in the United States? Do you find his reasoning persuasive?
  • To what did the writer compare flyers' training? Does this comparison help you understand the progression of training?

The Stars and Stripes also provided information that helped people new to the military understand the institution they had become part of. For example, several early issues featured a column entitled "Mentioned in Orders," which made soldiers aware of recent orders affecting them. In March and April 1918, the paper printed explanations of the insignia of the French, British, Italian, and Belgian armies. The paper also featured articles that described the work of a variety of members of the military from balloonists to chaplains, woodchoppers, and doctors.

  • Why would it be useful for soldiers to be familiar with the insignia of allied forces?
  • How might understanding the duties of particular jobs in the military be useful to new soldiers?
  • Imagine that you were a relatively new member of the Army, stationed in France in 1918. You have had some training, but the military is still very new to you. What information would you like to have? Search The Stars and Stripes collection to see if you can find any articles presenting that information.