An Unwanted War: The Diplomacy of the United States and Spain over Cuba, 1895-1898

By John L. Offner | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 3
MCKINLEY AND
CÁNOVAS

During the first five months of the McKinley administration, the new president appointed his foreign affairs advisers, gathered information about Cuba, and defined his policy toward Spain. Although many legislators wanted the administration to recognize Cuban belligerency, Congress provided time for McKinley to organize and attempt to negotiate a solution. In Spain during these months, Cánovas faced growing domestic opposition to the military suppression of Cuba; Sagasta and others called for political reforms to end the war. The situation changed dramatically in August, when an assassin killed Cánovas.

The new American president was experienced in domestic issues yet a novice in foreign affairs. Born to a lower-middle-class family, McKinley obtained a modest education, which eventually led to the practice of law. Caught up in the fiery events of the Civil War, he volunteered at the start, and during four years he rose in the ranks from private to major, with several citations for bravery. After the war McKinley practiced law in Canton, Ohio, and began a successful political career. He served fourteen years in the House of Representatives, rising to chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, and served two terms as governor of Ohio. Before becoming president, McKinley had shown little experience or in-

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An Unwanted War: The Diplomacy of the United States and Spain over Cuba, 1895-1898
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Chapter 1 the Cuban Revolution Three Perspectives 1
  • Chapter 2 Cuba, Cleveland, and CÁnovas 17
  • Chapter 3 Mckinley and CÁnovas 37
  • Chapter 4 the Woodford Mission 54
  • Chapter 5 Sagasta's Cuban Reforms 68
  • Chapter 6 Failure of Cuban Reforms 86
  • Chapter 7 Two Shocks the De LÔme Letter and the Maine Disaster 111
  • Chapter 8 Backdrop for Diplomacy 127
  • Chapter 9 Failure to Solve the Crisis 143
  • Chapter 10 Spanish Suspension of Hostilities 159
  • Chapter 11 Descent into War 177
  • Chapter 12 Preliminaries to Peace 194
  • Chapter 13 the Peace Protocol 209
  • Chapter 14 Conclusion 225
  • Appendix 237
  • Notes 239
  • Bibliography 279
  • Index 297
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