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January 18Trivia powered by Prof. Walter

The Paris Peace Conference
In 1919

In the fall of 1918, World War I had not officially ended, but the fighting had stopped. The different countries had agreed to a series of armistices (temporary agreements).  On January 18, 1919, diplomats from more than two dozen countries gathered in Paris for a conference to discuss how to end the war permanently.

The conference lasted a little more than a year. The discussions produced treaties (formal agreements) with Germany, Austria, and Bulgaria.

Who were the leaders at the conference?

British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, President Woodrow Wilson of the United States, French Premier Georges Clemenceau, and Premier Vittorio Orlando of Italy became the leaders of the conference. They were called the Big Four.

The conference leaders also discussed a more difficult problem. What could they do to prevent another war involving so many countries?

President Wilson suggested a plan for peace, called the Fourteen Points plan. Part of the plan called for forming the League of Nations to solve disagreements between countries by talking about the problems instead of fighting wars.

The League of Nations was formed, but it did not prevent another big war. Just twenty years later, in 1939, World War II began. It lasted until 1945.

After World War II, the United Nations replaced the League of Nations. The United Nations included more countries than the League of Nations. The United States joined the United Nations in 1945 and is still a member today.

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