Americanization Committee

From Ohio History Central

During World War I, the United States fought against Germany and its allies. As a result, there was a significant amount of anti-German sentiment across the United States, including in Ohio. Many Americans felt that it was patriotic to do away with anything German. One manifestation of this sentiment was the Americanization Committee.

Governor James M. Cox originally created the Americanization Committee to promote American values and the teaching of the English language to immigrants who wanted to become American citizens. Raymond Moley, a professor at Western Reserve College, was the chair of the committee. Members of the committee were soon influenced by anti-German sentiment and began to enlarge their responsibilities to include censorship of German literature as well. Committee members sometimes recommended removing "pro-German" books from libraries during the war. The committee also published a list of "approved books" that were not considered to be "pro-German."

See Also


  1. Keegan, John. The First World War. New York, NY: A.A. Knopf, 2001.
  2. Keene, Jennifer. The United States and the First World War. New York, NY: Longman, 2000.