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Hawaii Annexation: Paragraphs

Ever wonder how Hawaii became apart of the United States? Well that's because Americans wanted Hawaii to have United States Property on their lands. At the beginning America had nothing to do with Hawaii because it was owned by Spainsh government. The spainish would soon come to interfere with what organizations that Hawaii and America had establish meaning their trade system. Hawaii became furious that they didn't have the freedom that they thought they deserved. By this time Americans became furious because of the loss of money and resources. With Americans being money hungry and having a fedish for having their way they decided to help Hawaii over power their rulers (Queen Liliuokalani, and King Kalakaua), in return to be able to have naval bases set up on their lands, speard Chrisitany and even some businesses.

Meanwhile, President McKinley, and his congressmen would agure for about five years before they thought that it was worth the trouble of making them a state. Nevertheless, Americans sent out a ship to help to the islands to watc over things and it was set fire by it's own gases. But because of the confusion and surrounded areas they automatically accused Spain of having involvement with this. Because of this is war was about to begin. In 1898, war began for American soilders in that year that would fight Spain for Cuba, Guam, Philippines, and Puerto Rico. Americans also feel that since they were taking over lands and becoming a small world power that they could help take over Panama they could build a canal for cheaper prices and bring in more money.

The United States had many negaitive and positive actions in the annexation of Hawaii. After a short time of having all these lands they began to see how troublesome they really where meaning some of them had to be giving their independence and put out on their own. On the edge of failure Americans had to do more positive actions they realized Hawaii's fruit trade wasn't enough. After a short time U.S would be kicking spain out of their rulership in Guam, Phillippines, and Puerto Rico. At that instant they realized that conquering things weren't all that hard. Next on their list would be Cuba and Panama. In spite of all the risk that they have taken they managed to make it work somehow, Not giving any of these places but Cuba some type of indepedence Americans soon came to face that they couldn't handle all of the responsiblity giving everyone their freedom but annexing Hawaii to keep the progress that they had already started. In summary America is still Money hungry, and somewhat of a world power.

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Vocabulary for Hawaii Annexation

Hawaiian Annexation Vocabulary

1. Annex- to append or add as an extra or subordinate part.


2. Delegate- a person sent or authorized to represent others, in particular an elected representative sent to a conference.


3. Appurtenance- an accessory or other item associated with a particular activity or style of living.


4. Earnestly- resulting from or showing sincere and intense conviction


5. Abdicate- renounce one's throne


6. Contingent- a group of people united by some common feature, forming part of a larger group.


7. Ratify- sign or give formal consent to (a treaty, contract, or agreement), making it officially valid.


8. Voluminous- occupying or containing much space.


9. Reassert- to assert again (state a fact or belief confidently and forcefully)


10. Poised- having a composed and self-assured manner. Having a graceful and elegant bearing.


11. Patriotic- Having or expressing devotion to and vigorous support of one’s country.


12. Treaty-  A formally concluded ratified agreement between countries.


13.Petition- A formal written request, typically one signed by many people, appealing to authority with respect to a particular cause.


14. Municipal- Of or relating to a city or town or its governing body.


15.Plenipotentiaries - One with the full power of independent action on behalf of one's government.



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Website 3: The 1897 Petition Against the Annexation of Hawaii

Website 3: The 1897 Petition Against the Annexation of Hawaii | The Spanish War |

The National Archives Digital Classroom: Primary Sources, Activities and Training for Educators and Students.
When the Hawaiian islands were formally annexed by the United States in 1898, the event marked end of a lengthy internal struggle between native Hawaiians and white American businessmen for control of the Hawaiian government. In 1893 the last monarch of Hawaii, Queen Lili'uokalani, was overthrown by party of businessmen, who then imposed a provisional government. Soon after, President Benjamin Harrison submitted a treaty to annex the Hawaiian islands to the U.S. Senate for ratification. In 1897, the treaty effort was blocked when the newly-formed Hawaiian Patriotic League, composed of native Hawaiians, successfully petitioned the U.S. Congress in opposition of the treaty. The League's lobbying efforts left only 46 Senators in favor of the resolution, less than the 2/3 majority needed for approval of a treaty. The League's victory was shortlived, however as unfolding world events soon forced the annexation issue to the fore again. With the explosion of the U.S.S. Maine in February of 1898 signaling the start of the Spanish American War, establishing a mid-Pacific fueling station and naval base became a strategic imperative for the United States. The Hawaiian islands were the clear choice, and this time Congress moved to annex the Hawaiian islands by Joint Resolution, a process requiring only a simple majority in both houses of Congress. On July 12, 1898, the Joint Resolution passed and the Hawaiian islands were officially annexed by the United States.
The Hawaiian islands had a well-established culture and long history of self-governance when Captain James Cook, the first European explorer to set foot on Hawaii, landed in 1778. The influence of European and American settlers quickly began to alter traditional ways of life. Originally governed by individual chiefs or kings, the islands united under the rule of a single monarch, King Kamehameha, in 1795, less than two decades after Cook's arrival. Later the traditional Hawaiian monarchy was overthrown in favor of a constitutional monarchy. Eventually, the monarchy itself was abandoned in favor of a government elected by a small group of enfranchised voters, although the Hawaiian monarch was retained as the ceremonial head of the government. Even elements of daily life felt the social and economic impact of the white planters, missionaries and businessmen. The landholding system changed, and many aspects of traditonal culture were prohibited including teaching the Hawaiian language and performing the native Hula dance.
In 1887, the struggle for control of Hawaii was at its height as David Kalakaua was elected to the Hawaiian throne. King Kalakaua signed a reciprocity treaty with the United States making it possible for sugar to be sold to the U.S. market tax-free, but the haole - or "white" - businessmen were still distrustful of him. They criticized his ties to men they believed to be corrupt, his revival of Hawaiian traditions such as the historic Hula, and construction of the royal Iolani Palace. A scandal involving Kalakaua erupted in the very year he was crowned, and it united his opponents, a party of businessmen under the leadership of Lorrin Thurston. The opposition used the threat of violence to force the Kalakua to accept a new constitution that stripped the monarchy of executive powers and replaced the cabinet with members of the businessmen's party. The new constitution, which effectively disenfranchised most native Hawaiian voters, came to be known as the "Bayonet Constitution" because Kalakaua signed it under duress.
When King Kalakaua died in 1891, his sister Lili'uokalani succeeded him, and members of the native population persuaded the new queen to draft a new constitution in an attempt to restore native rights and powers. The move was countered by the Committee on Annexation, a small group of white businessmen and politicians who felt that annexation by the United States, the major importer of Hawaiian agricultural products, would be beneficial for the economy of Hawaii.Supported by John Stevens, the U.S. Minister to Hawaii, and a contingent of Marines from the warship, U.S.S. Boston, the Committee on Annexation overthrew Queen Lili'uokalani in a bloodless coup on January 17, 1893 and established a revolutionary regime.
Without permission from the U.S. State Department, Minister Stevens then recognized the new government and proclaimed Hawaii a U.S. protectorate. The Committee immediately proclaimed itself to be the Provisional Government. President Benjamin Harrison signed a treaty of annexation with the new government, but before the Senate could ratify it, Grover Cleveland replaced Harrison as president and subsequently withdrew the treaty.
Shortly into his presidency, Cleveland appointed James Blount as a special investigator to investigate the events in the Hawaiian Islands. Blount found that Minister Stevens had acted improperly and ordered that the American flag be lowered from Hawaiian government buildings. He also ordered that Queen Lili'uokalani be restored to power, but Sanford Dole, the president of the Provisional Government of Hawaii, refused to turn over power. Dole successfully argued that the United States had no right to interfere in the internal affairs of Hawaii. The Provisional Government then proclaimed Hawaii a republic in 1894, and soon the Republic of Hawaii was officially recognized by the United States.
The overthrow of Lili'uokalani and imposition of the Republic of Hawaii was contrary to the will of the native Hawaiians. Native Hawaiians staged mass protest rallies and formed two gender-designated groups to protest the overthrow and prevent annexation. One was the Hui Hawaii Aloha Aina, loosely translated as the Hawaiian Patriotic League, and the other was its female counterpart, the Hui Hawaii Aloha Aina o Na Wahine. On January 5, 1895, the protests took the form of an armed attempt to derail the annexation but the armed revolt was suppressed by forces of the Republic. The leaders of therevolt were imprisoned along with Queen Lili'uokalani who was jailed for failing to put down the revolt.
In March of 1897, William McKinley was inaugurated as President of the United States. McKinley was in favor of annexation, and the change in leadership was soon felt. On June 16, 1897, McKinley and three representatives of the government of the Republic of Hawaii --Lorrin Thurston, Francis Hatch, and William Kinney-- signed a treaty of annexation. President McKinley then submitted the treaty to the U.S. Senate for ratification.
The Hui Aloha Aina for Women and the Hui Aloha Aina for Men now organized a mass petition drive. They hoped that if the U.S. government realized that the majority of native Hawaiian citizens opposed annexation, the move to annex Hawaii would be stopped. Between September 11 and October 2, 1897, the two groups collected petition signatures at public meetings held on each of the five principal islands of Hawaii. The petition, clearly marked "Petition Against Annexation" and written in both the Hawaiian and English languages, was signed by 21,269 native Hawaiian people, or more than half the 39,000 native Hawaiians and mixed-blood persons reported by the Hawaiian Commission census for the same year.
Four delegates, James Kaulia, David Kalauokalani, John Richardson, and William Auld, arrived in Washington, DC on December 6 with the 556-page petition in hand. That day, as they met with Queen Lili'uokalani, who was already in Washington lobbying against annexation, the second session of the 55th Congress opened. The delegates and Lili'uokalani planned a strategy to present the petition to the Senate.
The delegation and Lili'oukalani met Senator George Hoar, chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on the following day, and on December 9, with the delegates present, Senator Hoar read the text of the petition to the Senate. It was formally accepted. The next day the delegates met with Secretary of State John Sherman and submitted a formal statement protesting the annexation to him. In the following days, the delegates met with many senators, voicing opposition to the annexation. By the time the delegates left Washington on February 27, 1898, there were only 46 senators willing to vote for annexation. The treaty was defeated in the Senate.
Other events brought the subject of annexation up again immediately. On February 15, 1898, the U.S. Battleship Maine was blown up in Havana harbor in Cuba. The ensuing Spanish-American War, part of which was fought in the Philippine Islands, established the strategic value of the Hawaiian islands as a mid-Pacific fueling station and naval installation. The pro-annexation forces in Congress submitted a proposal to annex the Hawaiian Islands by joint resolution, which required only a simple majority vote in both houses. This eliminated the 2/3 majority needed to ratify a treaty, and by result, the necessary support was in place. House Joint Resolution 259, 55th Congress, 2nd session, known as the "Newlands Resolution," passed Congress and was signed into law by President McKinley on July 7, 1898.
Once annexed by the United States, the Hawaiian islands remained a U.S. territory until 1959, when they were admitted to statehood as the 50th state. The story of the annexation is a story of conflicting goals as the white businessmen struggled to obtain favorable trade conditions and native Hawaiians sought to protect their cultural heritage and maintain a national identity. The 1897 Petition by the Hawaiian Patriotic League stands as evidence that the native Hawaiian people objected to annexation, but because the interests of the businessmen won out, over the coming decades most historians who wrote the history of Hawaii emphasized events as told by the Provisional Government and largely neglected the struggle of the Native Hawaiians. Today, there is a growing movement on the Islands to revive interest in the native Hawaiian language and culture. Primary sources such as this petition bear witness that there is another side to the story.
The annexation petition with its voluminous signatures, along with many related records, is filed in the Records of the U.S. Senate, Record Group 46, at the National Archives and Records Administration. The petitions are available on microfilm as publication M1897.

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Website Today #1: Puerto Ricans want statehood in America??

Website Today #1: Puerto Ricans want statehood in America?? | The Spanish War |

A slim majority of Puerto Ricans sought to change their ties with the United States and become the 51st U.S. state in a non-binding referendum that would require final approval from Congress.The two-part referendum asked whether the island wanted to change its 114-year relationship with the United States. Nearly 54 percent, or 922,374 people, sought to change it, while 46 percent, or 786,749 people, favored the status quo. Ninety-six percent of 1,643 precincts were reporting as of early Wednesday.

The second question asked voters to choose from three options, with statehood by far the favorite, garnering 61 percent. Sovereign free association, which would have allowed for more autonomy, received 33 percent, while independence got 5 percent.

President Barack Obama earlier expressed support for the referendum and pledged to respect the will of the people in the event of a clear majority.

It is unclear whether U.S. Congress will debate the referendum results or if Obama will consider the results to be a clear enough majority.

Puerto Rico's resident commissioner Pedro Pierluisi, who has championed statehood, did not return calls for comment. He received 48 percent or 874,914 votes, while his opponent, Rafael Cox Alomar, received 47 percent or 855,732 votes with 96 percent of precincts reporting.

The island is currently a U.S. territory whose inhabitants are U.S. citizens but are prohibited from voting in presidential elections. Its resident commissioner in the U.S. House also has limited voting powers.

The future of the island's political status, however, also is dependent on who governs the island.

According to partial election results, pro-statehood Gov. Luis Fortuno was ousted by a razor thin margin by an opponent who supports the island's current political status.

With 96 percent of precincts reporting, challenger Alejandro Garcia Padilla with the Popular Democratic Party received 48 percent or 870,005 votes. Fortuno, a Republican and leader of the New Progressive Party, received 47 percent or 855,325 votes.

Fortuno has not issued comment, while Garcia celebrated what he called a victory.

"I can assure you we have rescued Puerto Rico," Garcia said. "This is a lesson to those who think that the well-being of Puerto Ricans should be subjected to ideologies."

Election results also pointed to a major upset for Jorge Santini, who has been mayor of the capital of San Juan for 12 years. His opponent, Carmen Yulin Cruz, received 71,736 votes compared with Santini's 66,945 votes with 96 percent of precincts reporting.

The island's elections commission said it would resume counting votes late Wednesday morning.

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2 Paragraphs


During the late 19th and early 20th century the U.S. expanded and became a world power. At first America desired to control the island of Hawaii to spread Christianity, secure naval bases, and business interest. It took President William McKinley and congress five years to approve annexation. The U.S. bought land from Hawaii and had established plantations on the island. A plantation owner convinced the Hawaiian King Kalakaua to modify national constitution to only allow landowning residents the right to vote. After the king dies his sister, Queen Liliuokalani takes over and kicks out the U.S.’s annexation. Second, the U.S. fought Spain to gain control over the territories of Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico in 1898. Third, also in 1898 America goes to war to free Cuba from the grip of Spain. Cuba regains independence. Forth, America helps Panama escape from Colombia, but U.S. takes over Panama to build canal for a cheaper price. Finally America had force China to open trade routes with them. In conclusion America has become a world power.


To gain more power and territory, the U.S. did many positive and negative actions. To begin with, America uses Hawaii by selling it’s fruits that can only be grown in Hawaii for money. The negative is Hawaii has lost its independence after what has happened. After, the positive for the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico the U.S. kicks out Spain’s controlling actions. The negative is America takes over after and all three lose independence. Third, America also kicks out Spain from Cuba, but American has only given a limitation in their dependence. Forth, Panama gets independence from Colombia soon the U.S. helps Panama and takes over making them look greedy. Finally, America has forced China to open trades and then loses independence. In conclusion, is the world power.

Via Sulia Her
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Website 4:Timeline - of the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii

A Time-line of the event leading up to and including the american overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom...Sometimes its easier to understand the weight of duplicity by seeing the sequence of events unfold and in this way appreciate the larger scheme of history. Here, we present a time-line of the events which swept Hawai'i into annexation by the United States during that crucial period 1897-98.

March 1897: Grover Cleveland leaves office having served two terms. William McKinley, having won over William Jennings Bryan, becomes President.

A McKinley campaign plank:"The Hawaiian Islands should be controlled by the United States and no foreign power should be permitted to interfere with them."
- Stolen Kingdom, Budnick, at p. 170

June 16, 1897: Treaty of Annexation of Hawai'i to the United States signed and forwarded to U.S. Senate for ratification,
where it was rejected. See page 6342 of the Congressional Record - Senate (See Queen Liliuokalani's protest June 17, 1897)

September 9, 1897: The Provincial Government (occupying force) Senate Ratifies

September 14: U.S. Senator John T. Morgan of Alabama, Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, appeared in Hawai'i, leading a contingent of fellow annexationist of the U.S. Congress (Congressmen Joseph G. Cannon of Illinois, James A. Tawney of Minnesota, Henry C. Loudenslager of New Jersey, and Albert S. Berry of Kentucky). Morgan was author of the Morgan report of early 1894 - an attempt to refute the findings of President Cleveland's Special Commissioner to Hawai'i, James Blount. Special Commissioner Blount (see Blount Report-it's 1500+ pages I've not gotten it all in readable form but I can tell you were to get it.) had uncovered a multitude of violations of international law and of American foreign policy in the U.S. conduct in Hawai'i during the events of the overthrow. Morgan insisted that the U.S. conduct was appropriate. Now for the first time in Hawai'i, Morgan was trying to boost the annexation attempt on-going in the Congress. Arriving on September 14, he engaged in public speeches and newspaper interviews. He tried persuading native Hawaiians that their status as American citizens would be an improvement in their condition, assuring them that the Americans wanted only to "secure you from aggression from foreign powers." He promised protection from the Chinese and told the people that a Hawaiian could become President of the United States! (A blantent Lie The U.S. Constitution requires, however, that a President must be born an American.) He further promised that Hawai'i would be annexed as a State, that the public lands would go to the people, and that there was no need to submit the question of annexation to a popular vote.

Hawaiian loyalists were just as vocal and were unafraid to go "brain to brain" against Morgan. James Kaulia is a prime example. Kaulia, President of the Hawaiian Patriotic League (Hui Aloha '_ina) declared, "The destiny of Hawaii, situated in the mid-Pacific as she is, should be that of an independent nation and so she would be were it not for the policy of greed which pervades the American Legislators and the spirit of cowardice which is in the breasts of those who first consummated the theft of Hawaiian prestige."

In the style of Shakespear's Mark Anthony, Kaulia honors the Senator as an honorable representative of that great Government of the U.S., "a good and faithful servant" with the seeming love for God in his heart, who should be the last man to aid, ever so little, in the consummation of a wrong. He than calls upon Morgan, "let us reason together."

Kaulia points to dispatches from ex-American Minister Stevens to his superiors confessing to conspiring with American citizens to overthrow the Hawaiian Government and asking for "wise and bold action" to accomplish the overthrow.

Kaulia asks, "Can the United States in consistency with past principles annex these islands until she has made herself right before the world by undoing everything that this Minister has done?" He reminds Morgan that the protest of Her Majesty Lili'uokalani to the U.S. had still remained unanswered.

"And why this greed for the Hawaiian Islands?" Kaulia writes. "Is it a naval station that is needed? For that it would seem that American home ports are much in need of such protection. Is it a coaling station that is desired? That is obtainable by treaty. Or is it the islands' wealth that America desires? If so, then America will desire to annex the earth."

Kaulia closes in saying, "Ask for the voice of Hawaii on this subject - Mr. Senator, and you will hear it with no uncertain tones ring out from Niihau to Hawaii - 'Independence now and forever.'"

October 8, 1897: Hawaiian loyalists gathered by the thousands to protest the expected annexation to the United States. The gathering was held at Palace Square, today, the area fronting the U.S. Main Post Office and the old Federal Building, directly opposite the coronation stand on 'Iolani Palace grounds. This mass meeting was the largest organized protest by Hawaiians against the activities of the Republic of Hawai'i and the United States in taking Hawai'i.

The mass meeting adopted a Memorial addressed to the President, the congress and the American People. In it, Hawaiian citizens, both aboriginal and foreign born, pointed out they were "held in subjection by the armed forces of the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands, and of its successor, the Republic of Hawaii; and have never yielded,"

that neither governments had the allegiance or support of the people. Those governments' very existence were challenged - the Memorial stating, "the Government of the Republic of Hawaii has no warrant for its existence in the support of the people of these Islands; that it was proclaimed and instituted and has hitherto existed and now exists, without considering the rights and wishes of a great majority of the residents, native and foreign born, of the Hawaiian Islands; and especially that said Government exists and maintains itself solely by force of arms, against the rights and wishes of almost the entire aboriginal population of these Islands."

Cleveland, in his December 18, 1893 message to the joint houses of Congress pointed out that the established practice of the U.S. was to recognize revolutionary government after it became apparent that they were supported by the people, conceding to people of foreign countries the same freedom and independence in the management of their domestic affairs that the U.S. had always claimed for themselves.

The Memorial continued to detail the contradictions of the Republic of Hawai'i with basic principles of governance. It said, for example, that the Republic was not founded upon a basis of popular government, that its constitution had never been submitted to a vote of the people, and that it was that very government with which the U.S. was engaged in agreeing to extinguish the Hawaiian nation's sovereignty.

The Memorial continued that Hawai'i's people had a history of democratic participation in government, accustomed to participate in the Constitutional forms of Government, in the election of Legislatures, in the administration of justice through regularly constituted magistrates, courts and juries, and in the representative administration of public affairs, in which the principle of government by majorities had been acknowledged and firmly established.

Contained within this protest was an "appeal to the President, the Congress and the People of the United States, to refrain from further participating in the wrong" and invoked the spirit of "the Declaration of American Independence; and especially the truth therein expressed, that Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed."

The Memorial declared that the consent of the people of the Hawaiian Islands to the forms of Government imposed by the so-called Republic of Hawaii, and to said proposed Treaty of Annexation, has never been asked by and is not accorded, either to said Government or to said project of Annexation. Annexation would be "subversive of the personal and political rights of these memorialists, and of the Hawaiian people and Nation, and would be a negation of the rights and principles proclaimed in the Declaration of American Independence, in the Constitution of the United States, and in the schemes of government of all other civilized and representative Governments." 20 November 1897: Hawaiian loyalists send 4 emissaries to Washington, Colonel John Richardson, representing especially the people of Maui, confidant to Queen Lili'uokalani, former Kuhina nui and member of the House of Nobles and House of Representatives, William Auld, high priest of Hale Naua, the secret society of Kal_kaua, who also officiated at the King's funeral and led the burial procession to Mauna'ala, James Kaulia, President of Hui Aloha'aina and David Kalauokalani, President of Hui Kalai'aina. They gained entrance to the Senate floor through the good offices of Senator R. F. Pettigrew.

U.S. Senate debated the treaty in secret. The Senate was not open to the public or the press! U.S. House of Representatives also debated the treaty although they had no authority in the matter.

By early December, it was obvious that the treaty was stalled in the Senate.

December 1897, the U.S. Battleship Maine was sent to Havana Harbor to "protect U.S. citizens and property."

By February, 1898, a head count showed that the Senate was not able to pass the Hawai'i annexation treaty. Discussion now moves to a joint resolution of Congress, which brought Texas into the union as a State, [new tactic] might be a way to bring Hawai'i in!

15 February 1898, the battleship Maine explodes and sinks, killing 260 aboard. Sabotage by the Spanish is suggested. The American public is inflamed by the yellow journalism of the William Randolph Hearst newspaper chain. (In 1969, the U.S. Navy determines that the Maine was sunk by a defective boiler exploding.) The U.S. demands immediate withdrawal of Spain from Cuba. Congress affirms Cuba's independence and states that the U.S. was not acting to secure an empire.

March 1898: McKinley tells Spain to get out of Cuba or else! Spain agrees to U.S. major demands.

20 April 1898: U.S. goes to war with Spain. Adopts joint resolution declaring the recognition of independence of Cuba.

The resolution states in part:

- the Government of the United States does hereby demand, that the Government of Spain at once relinquish its authority and government in the Island of Cuba, and withdraw its land and naval forces from Cuba and Cuban waters.

- the President of the United States be, and he hereby is, directed and empowered to use the entire land and naval forces of the United States, and to call into the actual service of the United States, the militia of the several States, to such extent as may be necessary to carry these resolutions into effect.

- the United States hereby disclaims any disposition or intention to exercise sovereignty, jurisdiction, or control over said Islands except for the pacification thereof, and asserts its determination, when that is accomplished, to leave the government and control of the Island to its people.

1 May 1898: Captain George Dewey sinks Spanish fleet in Manila Harbor, Philippines.

4 May 1898: Representative Frances Newlands introduces joint resolution of annexation in House of Representatives. The resolution says in part:

Whereas, the Government of the Republic of Hawaii having, in due form,signified its consent, in the manner provided by its constitution,(This was an outright lie and was in direct violation of the US Constitution which requires two-thirds majority of both parties [ Hawaii and the US] they had neither!) to cede absolutely and without reserve to the United States of America, all rights of sovereignty of whatsoever kind in and over the Hawaiian Islands and their dependencies, and also to cede and transfer to the United States, the absolute fee and ownership of all public, Government, or Crown lands, public buildings or edifices, ports, harbors, military equipment, and all other public property of every kind and description belonging to the Government of the Hawaiian Islands, together with every right and appurtenance thereunto appertaining: Therefore, Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That said cession is accepted, ratified, and confirmed, and that the said Hawaiian Islands and their dependencies be, and they are hereby, annexed as a part of the territory of the United States and are subject to the sovereign dominion thereof, and that all and singular the property and rights herein before mentioned are vested in the United States of America.

1 June 1898 : U.S. troops to Philippines lands in Hawai'i and provision government welcomes them. It also sides with the U.S. in their war with Spain.

15 June 1898: House passed joint resolution 209-91. Sends to the Senate 6 July 1898: A filibuster is attempted by the opponents to annexation but the country is caught in a fervor of war. The Senate passes the joint resolution by mere majority, 42 for, 21 against, 6 abstain-others present but not voting. Even at these numbers, the U.S. Constitution is violated for it calls for two/thirds of the Senators present (by US law they needed a passage of 46 for [42+21+6=69x.667(66%)=46.023], to be legal to annex a territory according to US Constitution).

7 July 1898: McKinley signs the joint resolution

12 August 1898: Ceremony to pretend the transfer of Sovereignty of Hawai'i to the United States of America. (Note, there may not have been a reciprocal action on the part of the Republic of Hawai'i for annexation via the joint resolution. Remember, it was a treaty of annexation adopted by the Republic of Hawai'i.)

December 1898: Treaty of Paris signed. Peace between Spain and the United States. U.S. subsequently takes Guam, Puerto Rico, Wake Island and Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. They claim not to have taken all of Cuba, but in reality, they shut out the Cuban rebel forces which had brought the fight against the Spaniards there, and brought in U.S. business interests, thus creating a double occupation of military and commercial interests. The required the new Cuban Constitution to permit the U.S. special rights of intervention and a coaling and naval stations in Cuban territory. (Howard Zinn's A people's History of the United States (1990) at p. 302-303

For a nation which declared it was not trying to secure an empire before the Spanish American War, by the end of that short 3 month war, the U.S. emerged a major world power with additional territories making up its empire. In the Pacific, it had Hawai'i, Wake Island, Guam and the Philippines. In the Caribbean, it had Puerto Rico and for all practical purposes, Cuba.

Cleveland writes: Hawai'i is ours. As I look back upon the first steps in this miserable business, and as I contemplate the means used to complete the outrage, I am ashamed of the whole affair.


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Webste 2:Spanish-American War

Webste 2:Spanish-American War | The Spanish War |

The Spanish-American War was a four-month conflict between Spain and the United States, provoked by word of Spanish colonial brutality in Cuba. Although the war was largely brought about by the efforts of U.S. expansionists, many Americans supported the idea of freeing an oppressed people controlled by the Spanish. At war's end, America emerged victorious with newly acknowledged respect as a world power.

Reasoning for war

Until the 1890s, ambivalence about overseas possessions had restrained America's drive to expand overseas. Suddenly, near the turn of the 20th century, inhibitions collapsed and American power thrust its way to the far reaches of the Pacific. The occasion for that explosion of imperialism lay neither in the Pacific nor in the quest for bases and trade, but to the south in Cuba. The chief motive was a sense of outrage at another country's imperialism.

It revived only briefly during a 10-year Cuban insurrection from 1868 to 1878. After the insurrection was brought under control in 1878 by the Spanish, American investments in Cuba, mainly in sugar and mining, rose to about $50 million. The United States in fact traded more with Cuba than Spain did.

On February 24, 1895, insurrection broke out again. Simmering discontent with Spanish rule had been aggravated by the Wilson-Gorman Tariff of 1894, which took sugar off the free list in the midst of a depression already damaging to the market for Cuban sugar. Public feeling in the U.S. lay with the rebels, and many Americans extended help to the Cuban revolutionary party that organized the revolt from its headquarters in New York.

The insurrectionists' strategy was to wage guerrilla warfare and to damage the island's economic life, which in turn would provoke the concern of American investors. The strategy employed hit-and-run attacks on trains, railways, and plantations. Ordinary Americans were more than ready to look upon the insurrection in the light of their own War of Independence.

Pressure for war

The American press had a field day with many of the events leading up to and during war with Spain. William Randolph Hearst's New York Journal and Joseph Pulitzer's New York World became major contributors to the sentiment for conflict with imperialistic Spain.

On April 6, 1896, The Second Cleveland Administration attempted to negotiate with Spain, urging that empire to seek peace in Cuba on the basis of home rule. The Spanish politely refused.

The direction of official neutrality changed sharply when William McKinley assumed office. He had been elected on a platform that endorsed independence for Cuba, as well as American control of Hawaii and of a Panama canal. On January 25, 1898, as a "courtesy call," but actually for the protection of American citizens and property in Cuba, the battleship USS Maine arrived in Havana harbor.

Meanwhile, on February 9, a private letter written by Enrique Dupuy de Lôme, the Spanish minister to Washington, surfaced in the U.S. press. The letter disparaged President McKinley, thus provoking more anti-Spanish sentiment.

On February 15, the Maine exploded in the harbor and sank with a loss of 260 men. Immediately afterwards, the American press sparked a nationwide uproar, and flung various unproven accusations of sabotage at Spain — giving rise to the slogan, "Remember the Maine!"

A month later, under mounting pressure from the American people, President McKinley obtained a joint resolution of Congress: It declared Cuba independent and demanded a withdrawal of Spanish forces. It also included an amendment that disavowed any U.S. plan to permanently occupy the island. The resolution was then sent to Spanish authorities with unconditional compliance to occur by April 23, 1898. On April 22, McKinley announced a blockade of Cuba's northern coast and the port of Santiago. Rather than give in to an ultimatum, the Spanish government declared war on April 24. The U.S. Congress — determined to be first — declared war on April 25, retroactive to the April 21 resolution signing.

However, the U.S. Army was not prepared for war. Following the Civil War, the nation had drastically reduced the size of its army. Most army units were scattered throughout the West, where they had fought and subdued Native Americans. Volunteer and National Guard units quickly assembled in Tennessee. Regular army divisions, filled with new recruits, rushed to Florida in anticipation of the invasion of Cuba.


Captain Henry Glass, commander of the cruiser USS Charleston, was on the way to Manila when he received orders instructing him to proceed to the island of Guam and wrest it from Spain.

On June 20, Captain Glass and his anxious sailors arrived off the shore of Guam. When the Charleston got within range, it fired upon fortifications on the island from three of its port-side cannons. Shortly after the cannon explosions — with little harm done — a ship flying the Spanish flag approached the Charleston, its crew completely unaware of any war taking place. In fact, a Spanish officer climbed aboard the Charleston and asked for gunpowder to return what they believed to be a salute.

Governor Juan Marina was then notified by an American courier from the Charleston that a state of war existed between the two countries. The Spaniards could not mount a serious defense; Governor Marina was compelled to surrender the island of Guam without so much as a murmur. Captain Glass flew the red, white, and blue off the coast of Guam as he made way for Manila.

The Philippines, Wake Island, and Hawaii eventually became occupied by the U.S. by the end of the war. Guam remained under U.S. control until being overrun by the Japanese during World War II.

Dewey takes Manila

The first battle of the Spanish-American War occurred in the Philippines. On May 1, 1898, Commodore George Dewey, commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, pulverized Admiral Patricio Montojo y Pasar’s Spanish forces at the Battle of Manila Bay without losing a man. The Spanish force lost 381 men, while Dewey's squadron sustained only eight wounded.

While the Americans were handily capturing Manila Bay, Filipino nationalist Emilio Aguenaldo and his guerilla force pursued the Spanish by land. The Americans then staged their own land assault at the Battle of Manila — ultimately forcing the surrender of Manila to the Americans.

Cuban Campaign

At the beginning of war with Spain, the Americans preparation was spotty. They navy was fit, but the army could muster only an ill-assorted force of 28,000 regulars and about 100,000 militiamen. Altogether during the war about 200,000 more militiamen were recruited, mostly as state volunteers. The armed forces of the U.S. suffered badly from both inexperience and maladministration, with the result that more died from disease than from enemy action. The United States' salvation was that the Spanish forces were even worse off.

On April 29, Spanish admiral Pascual Cervera left the Cape Verde Islands with four cruisers and three destroyers, turning up in Santiago de Cuba where the U.S. Navy put the Spanish fleet under a blockade. Then a force of some 17,000 troops hastily assembled at Tampa, Florida, under the command of General William Shafter. One significant element of that force was Colonel Leonard Wood's First Volunteer Cavalry, better known as the "Rough Riders," and best remembered because Lt. Colonel Theodore Roosevelt was second in command. Roosevelt, always active, got his regiment ashore quickly. "We disembarked with our rifles, our ammunition belts, and not much else," he remembered. "I carried some food in my pocket, and a light coat which was my sole camp equipment for the next three days."

The major land action of the Cuban Campaign occurred on July 1. About 7,000 Americans took the fortified village of El Caney from about 600 of the enemy garrison. While a much larger force attacked San Juan Hill, a smaller unit, including the dismounted Rough Riders, together with black soldiers from the Ninth and 10th Cavalry, seized the enemy position atop nearby Kettle Hill.

On July 3, Admiral Cervera made a run for it, but his ships were little more than sitting ducks to be picked off by a sturdy American navy. The casualties were as one-sided as at Manila: 474 Spaniards were killed and wounded and 1,750 were taken prisoner, while only one American was killed and one wounded. Santiago surrendered with a garrison of 24,000 on July 17.

Puerto Rico and war's end

On July 25 a force under General Nelson A. Miles and his convoy of 3,300 soldiers and nine transports (escorted by the USS Massachusetts) moved into Puerto Rico against minor resistance — easily taking the island. The day after General Miles landed, the Spanish government sued for peace through the French ambassador in Washington. After negotiations lasting two weeks, an armistice was signed on August 12, less than four months after the war's beginning.

The peace protocol specified that the U.S. annex Puerto Rico and one island in the Ladrones (later called the Marianas), and should occupy the city, bay, and harbor of Manila pending disposition of the Philippines. Among more than 274,000 Americans who served during the war and the ensuing demobilization, 5,462 died, but only 379 in battle. The total wounded numbered 1,704.

In February 1899, the Treaty of Paris received the necessary two-thirds ratification in the U.S. Senate by a single vote. America had once again overcome adversity in victorious fashion.


The United States annexed the former Spanish-ruled colonies of Puerto Rico, the Philippines, and Guam. However, some Americans did not like the idea of the United States playing the part of an imperial power with foreign colonies. President McKinley and the pro-imperialists did, however, win their way over the majority public opinion. Such men as Mark Twain heavily opposed this act of imperialism, which inspired him to pen The War Prayer.

Even though the Americans had liberated a Spanish ruled Philippines, insurrection broke out once again, which put McKinley in another rough spot. With help from God and country, McKinley's decision for reform in the Philippines was one of humanity and American heart.

Overall, the Spanish-American War became a stepping stone to conciliation between America's still-bitter North and South. The war had provided a common enemy and fostered a sort of rapport that helped to repair bad relations following a bloody American Civil War.

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