By Jay Lloyd

PARIS, France (CBS) — It was a hundred years ago that the shot which sparked “the war to end all wars” was fired.

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If you have a family connection to World War I and are vacationing in Paris this summer, may I suggest a stop at the French Museum of the Army.

(L'Hôtel National des Invalides, in Paris, is now France's military museum.  Photo by Jay Lloyd)

(L’Hôtel National des Invalides, in Paris, is now France’s military museum. Photo by Jay Lloyd)


When America entered the Great War, my mom and dad hadn’t met yet.  He was in the US Army, and she had friends who were.

I have pictures that they had saved, but when visiting Paris I wanted to get an overview of the bloody conflict that epitomized trench warfare.  A stop at France’s Museum of the Army, within sight of the Eiffel Tower, was the place.

Four rooms are devoted to maps and documents that trace the battles fought largely on French soil.  Exhibits unveil the innovations in weaponry, including tanks, which signaled a new era in warfare.  Horses worked alongside mechanized units.

And there’s more to this unique museum, on the manicured grounds of Invalides (originally a hospital and retirement home for wounded war veterans).  Here, you’ll find the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte (below).  For history buffs on a Paris getaway, his story is a treasure.

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(Napoleon's tomb.  Photo by Jay Lloyd)

(Napoleon’s tomb. Photo by Jay Lloyd)




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