Imperialism- Chapter 7-By the late 1800s, Americans began to set their sights on lands abroad. Before, the concernwas rebuilding the South and expanding in the West.-Before the U. S. even thought about expanding abroad, European nations had already begunthe process.-imperialism- economic and political domination of a strong nation over a weaker one.-Reasons for imperialism:* the demand for raw materials for factories (raw materials came from a variety of places)* the desire to get around other countries’ tariffs (price each country paid to do business onanother country’s soil- most of the more industrialized nation looked for overseas territories tokeep from having to pay high tariffs)*cultural superiority-European countries began investing money in Asia and Africa. Both had an abundance of rawmaterials.*To protect their investments, they began to establish colonies and protectorates in theseterritories (basically gave them political and economic control of these areas)—Remember tomention King Leopold and the Congo.
-Americans began to take notice of this overseas expansion and wanted in on the action(Remember Manifest Destiny from our chapter on the West- Manifest Destiny said that it is our“destiny” to conquer these lands or territories. Supporters of this theory believed that it waswhat the Lord intended for them to do).-Americans began to use the whole “survival of the fittest” (Social Darwinism) theory to justifytheir wanting to expand overseas.-The idea of Anglo-Saxonism surfaced. Anglo- Saxonism said that only English- speaking nationswere superior in character, ideas, and systems of govt. Nations that didn’t fit this characteristicwere believed to be uncivilized. Again, we used the Manifest Destiny theory….Americans saidthat it was our “destiny” to bring civilization to these lesser nations.-The desire to expand and the need to protect our overseas markets led to the cries for ourown modern Navy. We realized that if we did acquire bases overseas we couldn’t trustEuropean nations to protect our interest.AMERICAN EXPANSION IN THE PACIFIC-American businesses had been trading in East Asia long before we actually began trying toacquire territory.
-Americans were already trading with China, but we also wanted to trade with Japan. Theproblem with that was….Japan didn’t want to trade with us. They only allowed trade with theChinese and the Dutch.*They didn’t trust the West- thought that trading with us would lead to their destruction.-U. S. Congress members were so upset by Japan’s not wanting to trade with us that theypressured the president to force them to trade with us. Commodore Matthew C. Perry wassent to Japan to see if he could “negotiate” a trade treaty.*Commodore Perry to 4 American wasrships to Japan- The Japanese were so impressed by thetechnology and the firepower on the steamships that they signed an agreement with us agreedto trade. The treaty also included a “truce” between the two nations as well as a promise tohelp any American ships that found themselves shipwrecked off the Japanese coast.-As a result of this trade, Japan built their own powerful Navy and began conquering territoriesabroad (This is known as Japanese imperialism).ANNEXING HAWAII-This open trade in Asia brought on the need for ports to resupply and refuel (before theycrossed the Pacific Ocean).*Americans negotiated a deal and got permission to open a base in the Samoan Islands (in theSouth Pacific), but they also had their sights set on Hawaii.
-American settlers had already found out that Hawaii’s climate and fertile soil was perfect forgrowing sugarcane. Businessmen from America jumped on this and began establishingplantations there.-When Hawaii’s economy hit a recession, Americans worried that they might have to seek helpfrom either the British or the French, so we offered it to them first.*The U. S. signed a treaty saying that Hawaii guar would be exempt from tariffs. When thetreaty expired, the U. S. refused to renew it without Hawaii promising to give us exclusive rightsto the Navy Base at Pearl Harbor.*The treaty benefitted both Hawaii and the U. S. well. Hawaii’s economy hit a boom andAmerican businessmen profited greatly from their sugar plantations there.-Before long, American businessmen in Hawaii began putting pressure on the Hawaiian king toaccept a constitution limiting his authority. Yes, you read that right. At the same time, sugarplanters in the U. S. began receiving subsidies---these subsidies made Hawaiian sugar higherthan sugar that was grown in the U. S.*The American businessmen in Hawaii began hatching a plan to make Hawaii an official part ofthe U. S.---this was the only way they saw increasing their sales.-When Queen Liliuokalani took the throne in Hawaii, she began trying to restrict thebusinessmen’s influence—She distrusted them and saw their influence as detrimental to theHawaiian way of life.*She tried to establish a new constitution giving her more power as ruler. The Americanplanters were so upset by this that they tried to overthrow her as ruler. Again, yes, you readthat right.*Marines were called in and the Queen was forced to step down. After she was thrown fromthe throne, they set up their own government and began asking for the U. S. to annex Hawaii.-Grover Cleveland was president at the time. He was against imperialism altogether anddefinitely against what had just happened in Hawaii. He even tried to return the Queen topower. The Senate knew that President Cleveland would never support annexing Hawaii, sothey simply waited until he was out of office. Hawaii was annexed 5 years later.