WWI: Marching Toward War Presentation

WWI: Marching Toward War PowerPoint

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      Mr. Harms has designed a number of PowerPoint and Keynote presentations to help students understand history. Designed by a teacher for teachers, this PowerPoint focuses on "Marching Toward War 1870-1914" This presentation is designed to give them an overview of the events in which Europe started on its path to war. Students will be shown maps, animations and descriptions of some of the major events that led to World War I.
      The presentation is totally customizable, allowing you to add your own pictures, graphics and animations to take what we've done even farther.  It comes with presentation notes to help you discuss the subject and engage them in the events that started the Second World War. At less than $4.00, it will save you time and lay the foundation for presentations that help students understand and remember.  
The Topics include: Competition, Imperialism, Militarism, Nationalism, Alliances, Bismarck, Wilhelm II, Crisis In The Balkans, Ottoman Empire, Austria-Hungary, Boznia-Herzegovina, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, Gavrilo Princip, Black Hand and Mobilization.
Number of Slides: 37  $3.70

Included in The Presentation Package:
1.    Keynote Presentation
2.    Power Point Presentation
3.    Text edit file of the outline of the presentation and presenter's notes.

(The package is a digital download (Zip File) of these three items.

      We have a number of PowerPoints related to World War 1. Teaching an entire unit on World War 1. Then check out our interactive World War 1 lesson plans. These units are proven to engage students in a way that text books and documentaries can’t. Hundreds of teachers are using these lesson plans to bring history to life for students. It’s a unit you’ll use year after year.

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Mcdougal Littel's World History: Patterns of Interaction
The World At War
The Great War
Chapter 29, Section 1 "Marching Toward War"

Chapter 29, Section 1

Presenters Notes

Higher Order Questions

“Generally at peace” means there were no major wars in that time period.  The Balkan Wars presided WWI but were not wars between major European powers.

    -Working For Peace

        -Europe had generally been at peace for thirty years

        -Hundreds of peace conferences have been meeting regularly.

        -Many people believed war was a thing of the past.

Rising Tensions in Europe

    -Dark Forces At Work

        -Europe: Competition, Imperialism, Nationalism

As nationalism increased in the major countries in Europe, suddenly competition developed to be seen as the most powerful economically and militarily.  That competition started to create a very dangerous situation.  by 1914 a lot of countries were itching to show off their military- not knowing what would it would lead to.

    -The Rise of Nationalism

        -Nationalism: Pride in your country

            Middle Ages-Nationalism- Early 1900’s

        -Slowly, after the Middle Ages, people began to develop an emotional attachment to their country.  Nationalism grew

Question: Can you think of an example, other than your feelings for your country where you feel an emotional attachment to something you belong to?
Answer: Students may use examples like school pride…..


        -The major powers become competitive:




        -Great Britain



        -Sources of Rivalry

            -Territorial Disputes

            -Germany and France

                -France bitter over loss of Alsace & Lorraine

When Germany defeated France in the Franco-Prussian War of 1871, France lost the Provinces of Alsace and Lorraine to Germany.

                -Russia and Austria-Hungary

                    -Both want to dominate the Balkan Peninsula


            -Competition for:

                -Raw Materials:

                -Gold, Coal, Iron Ore…..


                    -Under-developed countries in Africa and Asia


            -The policy of glorifying military power and keeping an army prepared for war

            -Expanding Armies:

                -Mobilization: Adding reserves to the standing army

Question: Why do you think tees large, standing armies created a dangerous situation?

Answer: Countries were itching to show the power of the militaries they had built up. this was increased by the rise of nationalistic feelings.

    Tangled Alliances

What was designed to keep the peace, created a dangerous system.

        - Bismarck Forges Early Pacts

After Germany was unified, Bismarck declared Germany a satisfied Power.  He then saw France as Germany’s biggest threat.  So he worked to isolate France.

            -Bismarck Isolates France

            -1879: Germany allies with Austria-Hungary

            -1881: Germany Allies with Russia

            -1882: Germany and Austria-Hungary ally with Italy- The Triple Alliance

    -Shifting Alliances Threaten Peace

Bismarck would have opposed Wilhelm’s plans to build a larger navy and antagonize the British into an arms race.  Bismarck would have wanted to keep the status quo which he had built. 

        -Change In Policy

            -Kaiser Wilhelm II forces Bismarck to resign

            -Wilhelm has no intention of sharing power with the elder statesman

After Germany was unified, Bismarck declared Germany a satisfied Power.  He then saw France as Germany’s biggest threat.  So he worked to isolate France.

            -Wilhelm’s New Course

            -1890: Germany’s treaty with Russia lapses

            -1892: Russia forms a defensive military alliance with France

Question: In what way did Wilhelm II put Germany in a strategically bad position?

Answer: Bismarck had feared that if France and Russia ever allied with each other, Germany could face war on two fronts, which would divide its army in half.

The British allied with the French and Russians because Wilhelm II started a massive shipbuilding program to equal the British Navy.  With England and island nation it could not afford for any country to be there equal on the seas.  The Triple Entente did not bind Great Britain to fight with France or Russia, but it did prohibit them from fighting against either one.

                -Naval Arms Race

                -Britain forms an alliance with France and Russia: Triple Entente

Question: With Europe divided into two camps, what possible problem do you anticipate?

Answer: A dispute between any two countries, could pull all the other countries into a continental war.

Crisis In The Balkans: The Powder Keg of Europe

“One day the great European War will come out of some damned foolish thing in the Balkans” Otto VonBismarck

    -A Restless Region

These countries took advantage of the Ottoman’s weakness.

        -A Fading Empire

        -Over time, the Ottoman Empire weakened and at the same time nationalism developed in some of its lands.

        -Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Montenegro, Serbia

Based on the amount of ethnic Slavs in Austro-Hungarian territories, it’s easy to see how the idea of a Serbian Slavic Empire wasn’t too popular with Austria-Hungary.  This would create a lot of problems for the empire.

        -Empires and Ethnic Groups

        -Serbia was ethnically largely Slavic

        -Wanted to re-create an empire of the Slavs

        -Russia, Slavic as well, supported Serbia

        -Austria-Hungary did not want Serbia to incite it’s Slavic population for independence.

            Conflict: Austria-Hungary and Serbia

        -Bosnia and Herzegovina

        -In 1908, Austria-Hungary annexed Bosnia and Herzegovina

        -Both were largely Slavic in ethnicity

        -Serbia was outraged!

        -Tensions increased

The Archduke was in Bosnia-Herzegovina to review the imperial troops. 

    -A Shot Rings Throughout Europe


        -Franz Ferdinand, Archduke of Austria-Hungary, heir to the throne, was visiting Sarajevo with his wife Sophie- June 28th 1914.

        -Gavrilo Princip

        -Princip was a member of the Black Hand, A Serbian, government sponsored terrorist group.

        -As the Archduke’s car appeared in front of Princip, the 19 year old fatally shot Ferdinand and his wife.


        -July 23rd, Austria-Hungary gives Serbia an ultimatum.

            -A list of demands they knew Serbia would not agree to.

            -Serbia knew if they didn’t agree - it would mean war with a more powerful army.

            -Serbia agreed to most of the demands, but offered to settle others by international conference.

            -Armies 1914: Serbia-420,597, A-H: 255,000; Mobilization: 800,000

Question: Do you think Serbia knew their actions would lead to war?

Austria-Hungary had decided on war when they issued their ultimatum.  The ultimatum was impossible for Serbia to agree to.  With German collaboration, the ultimatum was drafted to quickly crush Serbia before Russia could react.  

     Serbia was to allow A-H to investigate in their country, root out and destroy all anti Austro-Hungarian groups in Serbia.  Germany’s hopes of containing the conflict were unrealistic as Russia was mobilizing faster than anyone anticipated.

        -Action and Reaction

        -July 28th, Austria-Hungary rejects Serbia’s offer and declares war!

            -That triggers Serbia’s alliance with Russia

                -Russia starts mobilizing it’s army for war!

            -European diplomats scramble to persuade Russia and Austria-Hungary to negotiate: but it was too late.