Thomson Reuters

First World War firsts

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World War One pioneered many "firsts" in technological, scientific and societal innovations. Tanks were invented as a means of breaking the trench warfare stalemate. REUTERS/Handout/Files

World War One pioneered many "firsts" in technological, scientific and societal innovations. Tanks were invented as a means of breaking the trench warfare stalemate. REUTERS/Handout/Files
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"Tanks" were originally the codename for the armored vehicles in order to hide the purpose of their construction. Factory workers were told they were manufacturing water tanks. REUTERS/Handout/Files

"Tanks" were originally the codename for the armored vehicles in order to hide the purpose of their construction. Factory workers were told they were manufacturing water tanks. REUTERS/Handout/Files
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Machine guns were regularly employed for the first time, forever altering the battlefield. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

Machine guns were regularly employed for the first time, forever altering the battlefield. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Aircraft were deployed in war en masse for the first time, for both air to air combat and for reconnaissance. REUTERS/Handout via National Defense Intelligence College

Aircraft were deployed in war en masse for the first time, for both air to air combat and for reconnaissance. REUTERS/Handout via National Defense Intelligence College
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Observation balloons continued to be utilized for reconnaissance as well as airplanes. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress

Observation balloons continued to be utilized for reconnaissance as well as airplanes. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress
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World War One gave birth to the fighter pilot, including Eddie Rickenbacker, America's most successful World War One fighter ace. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

World War One gave birth to the fighter pilot, including Eddie Rickenbacker, America's most successful World War One fighter ace. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Aerial reconnaissance became a key component in military intelligence. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Defense Intelligence College

Aerial reconnaissance became a key component in military intelligence. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Defense Intelligence College
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Aircraft carriers were used for the first time, with the HMS Argus setting the template for future carriers capable of allowing planes to both take off and land on ships. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Naval Historical Center

Aircraft carriers were used for the first time, with the HMS Argus setting the template for future carriers capable of allowing planes to both take off and land on ships. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Naval Historical Center
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Steel helmets were introduced as protective headgear for soldiers. REUTERS/Files

Steel helmets were introduced as protective headgear for soldiers. REUTERS/Files
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Before the broad issuing of steel helmets, most soldiers wore cloth caps. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

Before the broad issuing of steel helmets, most soldiers wore cloth caps. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Field telephones and wireless communications were regularly used for the first time to coordinate military movements. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress

Field telephones and wireless communications were regularly used for the first time to coordinate military movements. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress
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Improved communication technologies allowed for greater coordination of military offensives. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

Improved communication technologies allowed for greater coordination of military offensives. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Chemical weapons in the form of deadly poison gases were used for the first time. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress

Chemical weapons in the form of deadly poison gases were used for the first time. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress
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Chemical weapon use lead quickly to the development of countermeasures like the first gas masks. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress

Chemical weapon use lead quickly to the development of countermeasures like the first gas masks. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress
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It was the first major war where a majority of combat casualties were inflicted by artillery. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

It was the first major war where a majority of combat casualties were inflicted by artillery. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Blood banks were created for the first time to help stabilize the wounded from blood loss. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Army Nurse Corps

Blood banks were created for the first time to help stabilize the wounded from blood loss. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Army Nurse Corps
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Submarines became a key component in naval strategy. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Navy

Submarines became a key component in naval strategy. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Navy
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The first officially enlisted women appeared in the U.S. military, as the U.S. Navy created a reserve force which allowed enlisted women to work as yeomen, radio operators, nurses, or in other support roles. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives

The first officially enlisted women appeared in the U.S. military, as the U.S. Navy created a reserve force which allowed enlisted women to work as yeomen, radio operators, nurses, or in other support roles. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. National Archives
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Mobile X-rays were developed to aid doctors in performing battlefield surgeries. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Army

Mobile X-rays were developed to aid doctors in performing battlefield surgeries. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Army
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Woodrow Wilson became the first U.S. president to make an official trip to Europe for the Paris peace conference. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress

Woodrow Wilson became the first U.S. president to make an official trip to Europe for the Paris peace conference. REUTERS/Handout via U.S. Library of Congress
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