Español/Americana War

An Overview

An Overview

Causes: In 1897 many riots were breaking out in Cuba, so they USS Maine to watch things in case American’s are in danger. On February 15, 1898 the USS Maine exploded killing 260 sailors. Americans blamed Spain of course… Especially after February 9th, 1898 a letter was released called “The Worst Insult To The United States in it’s History”, the trend of Yellow Journalism was big back then, so it was even more antagonizing. In this letter sent to McKinley, Spain said that they will not give Cuba freedom nor anything else the US asked for (to get rid of concentration camps and give them freedom) six days before this explosion which made it even more suspicious. The American people were furious and demanded De Lome’s resignation. Hearst’s New York Journal even began a campaign called “Go Home De Lome” and these campaigns eventually led to his resignation. De Lome’s comments on McKinley fueled Americans towards war.

After Spain consistently refusing to cooperate on Cuba’s freedom, McKinley gives 50 million to mobilize our army. He proposes a plan saying Spain has to agree with four rules. One, stop the feud with Cubans. Two, no more concentration camps. Three, pay for all damages. And four, accept Cuban independence. Spain agrees to all of the terms except for independence, that was the last straw for McKinley. He goes to congress, delivers a speech, and agrees to declare war. On April 14th 1898, congress declares war on Spain.



  • What did those opposed to the war do? Those who opposed war didn’t pressure Congress to declare war. They included amendments like the “Teller Amendment”. there was a “anti-imperialist american league” formed in 1898 they opposed the annexation of the Philippines it was comprised of many powerful people including; Grover Cleveland, Mark Twain , Andrew Carnegie. they were lead by senator Henry Teller.

  • What did they think? They thought that it imperialism was wrong because it went against the Monroe Doctrine. Also it would cause the spread of disease in new foreigners entering the U.S.A and the discrimination of newly found Americans such as Filipinos.

  • How organized was this resistance? There were 3 major anti-imperialists groups. they produced political pamphlets but the 1900 presidential election caused squabbles in the league. William Jennings Bryan was a famous anti-imperialist. the anti-imperialist movement lasted till WWI.