We will remember them
THE fighting finally came to an end on a train in northern France.
At 11am on November 11, 1918 famously the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month - a ceasefire came into effect after an armistice was signed in a railway carriage in the forest of Compiegne, marking a victory for the Allies and a complete defeat for Germany.
The arrival of America into the war in 1917 after 128 Americans died when a German U-boat sank the passenger liner Lusitania, and a major shortage of food and supplies due to the ongoing blockade of German ports, were two major factors behind Germany’s defeat.
To celebrate, blowers were sounded at the British ThomsonHouston works in Rugby, train drivers blew their whistles, church bells rang out across Coventry and children were sent home from school.
In London, according to the Daily Mirror, people went “wild with delight” and “bells burst forth into joyous chimes.”
Nevertheless a formal state of war persisted for another seven months, until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, 1919, forcing Germany to give up substantial areas of land, restrict its military and pay around £284 billion in today’s money in reparations.
To mark the formal end of war, Peace Day celebrations were held across the country on Saturday, July 19.
Around 10,000 people listened to bands in Rugby, and Alcester held a sports day.
In Coventry nearly 20,000 school children assembled at Pool Meadow before parading through the city streets.
In the afternoon, 4,000 people packed St Michael’s Cathedral for a service of prayer with another 4,000 outside.
Later, a meal was held at the National Kitchen in Ford Street for