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Chapter 18 US - Chapter 18 America Claims an Empire Section...

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Chapter 18: America Claims an Empire Section 1: Imperialism and America -Beginning in 1867, and through the next century, global competition caused the US to expand. American Expansionism *Imperialism - the policy in which stronger nations extend their economic, political, and military control over weaker territories. -This was already a trend around the world. Global Competition - EU nations had been establishing colonies for centuries. In the late 19th century Africa had emerged as a prime target for European expansionism. -Most Americans warmed to the idea of expansion overseas. -With manifest destiny , they had already pushed the US borders to the Pacific. 3 factors fueled new American imperialism : 1. The desire for military strength. 2. The thirst for new markets. 3. The belief in cultural superiority. *Alfred T. Mahan - as an admiral in the Navy, he urged the government to build American naval power in order to compete with other powerful nations. -The US Navy would soon become the 3rd largest in the world . -Imperialists viewed foreign trade as a solution to American overproduction and the related problems of unemploymen t and economic depression . -They argued that the US had a responsibility to spread Christianity and “civilization” to the world's “inferior people.” The US Acquires Alaska *William Seward - arranged for the US to buy Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million . -In 1959, Alaska became the 49 th state. It turned out to be a great buy, which was full of resources. The US Takes Hawaii -Hawaii was important to the United States because it was a stopping point on the way to China and East India. -In 1887 the US established a naval base at Pearl Harbor , which was used as a fueling station. -By 1900, foreigners and immigrant laborers outnumbered natives 3 to 1. -Hawaii was a major source of sugar for the US. -The McKinley Tariff of 1890 provoked a crisis by eliminating the duty-free status of Hawaiian sugar. -As a result, Hawaiian sugar growers faced competition in the American market. -American planters in Hawaii called for the US to annex the islands so they wouldn't have to pay the duty. 1
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*Queen Liliuokalani - surrendered to the superior force of the US and the white foreigners who planned to overthrow her. -The US set up a government headed by *Sanford B. Dole . -In August 1898 Congress proclaimed Hawaii as an American territory. -In 1959 Hawaii became the 50th state . Section 2: The Spanish-American War -In 1898, the US went to war to help Cuba win its independence from Spain. Cubans Rebel against Spain -By the end of the 19th century, Spain- once the most powerful colonial nation on earth- had lost most of its colonies. -The US had long held an interest in Cuba, which lies only 90 miles south of Florida. (Sugar) -While President Pierce was in office he offered to buy Cuba from Spain. The Spanish responded by saying that they would rather see Cuba sink in the ocean.
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