The crushing victory by Prussia and her German allies in the Franco-Prussian War, 1870–71, destroyed one empire and created another. It finally unified the German states into an empire under Prussian leadership – an empire proclaimed in the very halls of captured Versailles. In 1870 Prussia's reformed mobilization system put enormous armies into the field with unprecedented efficiency. The confidence which the victory encouraged among German militarists, and the intolerable humiliation it inflicted upon France, ensured that an even more destructive war was soon inevitable. This, the first of two titles, lists and illustrates the units of Prussia and her North German Confederation, the powerhouse of a formidable military machine.
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