Spanish American War Timeline
The Spanish American war was a battle that took place between Spain and the United States of America in 1898. At the end of the war, the United States emerged victorious by taking control of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines. Cuba was also involved in the dispute that triggered the war but was allowed to remain as an independent state.
In February 1895, Cuba began to fight for independence from Spain. In an effort to help in liberating Cubans from Spain, the US started publishing sensational stories depicting the brutality of the Spanish government over Cubans. Some Americans joined hands by urging their government to also get involved in the fight. On 15th February 1989, the USS Maine explodes and sinks in a Havana Harbor; a move that was suspected to have been championed by Spain.
Just two months after the sinking of the USS Maine, Spain agrees to an armistice that would bring the fighting between them and Cuba to a halt. In the agreement, Spain only allows Cuba to form a limited self-government. At the same time, the US Congress had just given President William McKinley the right to apply force against Spain. Three days after being given the power by the Congress on April 11th 1898, the US President asks the congress to declare war on Spain.
In April 20th 1898, the Congress responds to a speech by McKinley about the war through the Teller Amendment. Just four days after the amendment, Spain declared war against the United States of America. As a result of this, the US also declared war on Spain just one day later. The battle began on May 1st 1898 with the US destroying Spain’s fleet of ships in the Battle of Manila Bay. This claimed the lives of about four hundred Spanish sailors, leaving six US soldiers wounded.
As the war progressed on, the US troops attacked Spain on 1st July 1898 on the southern coast of Cuba. The troops charged further and overwhelmed the Spanish troops at San Juan Hill and Kettle Hill, including Rough Riders headed by Teddy Roosevelt. As a result of this win, the US troops moved further to capture Santiago de Cuba. In the battle of Santiago, the Spanish fleet were further destroyed and agreed to strike a cease-fire agreement in July 17th 1898. The actual signing of the cease-fire treaty was done in August 12th 1898.
Below is an illustration of the final events that took place after the ceasefire agreement:
- August 13th 1898, the US troops captured Manila in a mock battle with Spain.
- December 10th 1898, the US and Spain sign the Treaty of Paris to officially bring the Spanish-American war to an end. For $20 million, the US takes possession of Guam, Philippines and Puerto Rico.
After the end of the Spanish-American War, the Philippines declared itself as an independent republic, a move that brought in another war between the state and America. However, they were finally defeated and their revolutionary leader, Emilio Aguinaldo captured and forced to pledge allegiance to the American government.
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