An entertaining, educational 60 minute presentation about WWI. 

  • What countries were involved, why?

  • Who was the Lafayette Escadrille? 

  • What was the fighting like?

  • How did it end? 

The complete presentation employs two channels of communicating the contribution of American and the American flyers in the Lafayette Escadrille. The first element of the presentation package is a 17-minute WWI orientation. The orientation video uses vintage WW1 photographs beginning in 1914, collected from across many countries coupled with corresponding era music which provides attendees a highlight of the war’s timelines, participants, tools of destruction, key battles, multiple country air force highlights and the formal declaration of War from America in 1917. The video concludes with highlights of the American Army build-up, American military change in tactics and the war’s final Armistice.

The second element of the presentation is a presenter based 35-minute discussion about how some Americans wanted to help France and England confront the Central Powers assault on democracy, before the American government felt compelled to join the fight.  The presentation, again using vintage photographs highlights how the Lafayette Escadrille was formed as the result of the combined efforts of some idealistic young American men. It highlights the global importance of politics as the French saw the American group as an excellent way to generate support in America for the Allied cause. The presentation will focus on the contributions that the 38 American pilots under the French commander, Captain George Thenault, making up the original Lafayette Escadrille made to the war effort, how early aviators were trained to fly and fight.

The discussion uses a selection of period newspaper clippings and vintage flyer memoirs and photographs to inform the audience the importance of teamwork, selected Lafayette Escadrille escapades and their eventual induction to the American Army Air Forces. The presentation concludes with how the experienced Lafayette Escadrille pilots helped to influence American aviation tactics helping to bring the war’s end.