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War Cyclopedia - Introduction

War Cyclopedia: A Handy Reference on the Great War, published in 1918.

Throughout the United States to-day thousandss of Americans In civil life are doing their part to win the war. They come from all professions and from every trade. From the office, from the school, from the editorial room, and from the platform they are sending out their message of truth and democracy.

Their desire for service is complete; their chance to find easily the facts they need is limited. It is to provide them with a body of information, simply arranged and clearly stated, that this War Cyclopedia has been prepared.

Other handbooks have been and will be made by other agencies; all will serve their end, for this war is not to be won by an established doctrine nor by an official theory , but by an enlightened opinion based upon the truth. The facts of of history and life are the only arsenal to which Americans need resort in order to defend their cause. The deeper their study, the firmer becomes their conviction. The War Cyclopedis represents an effort to arrange in simple form the facts most needed. Persons have been left out except so far as biographical notes are absolutely indispensable; a knowledge of American public men in particular has been taken for granted. The map (at the end of the book) makes clear the German plans and conquests. The Chronology (see p. 811) includes only outstanding events,, but even a selected list of dates should prove helpful. The preparation of this handbook has been supervised by Guy Stanton Ford, director of the Division of Civic and Educational Cooperation of the Committee on Public Information. The editing has been done by Frederic L. Paxson, Edward S. Corwin and Samuel R. Harding with the assistence of Katherine J. Gallngher, Ellis P. Oherholtzer, Bernadotte E. Schmitt and Mason W. Tyler. The editors hace drawn freely upon the time and the patriotic good will of a large number of writers from all parts of The country. This book has been prepared under pressure and within a brief time, and if errors of detail appear notification of those to Mr. Ford, with a view to correction in subsequent printings, will be appreciated.

The declaration of war against Austria-Hungary fixes the limit of the Cyclopedia in its present form.