Dbq: 19th and 20th Centuries Essay

Around the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, America was at its peak of power. We were and still are a strong social, economic and political nation. It was because of this that America had become obsessed with expansion. Even after we expanded as far west as our boarders would allow; we still needed more land.

The United States needed to expand overseas. The only way we could do this was through an imperialistic beginning. Along with our obsession with expansion, America is obsessed with money, the idea of manifest destiny, and-to some extent-national security.In order to obtain these desires, we, the United States, will do just about anything if need be. During the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, America realized we needed to expand overseas.

The only way to do that was through an imperialistic beginning. Imperialism is the control or influence of a weaker nation by a stronger nation. Why have an imperialistic beginning? We are obsessed with money, national security, and manifest destiny. Countries such as Asia, Mexico, and Cuba created opportunities for a stronger and bigger nation.Thomas Nast’s cartoon called “The World’s Plunderers” depicts Britain, Russia and Germany expanding their countries. They are taking pieces of the world and putting them into their grab bags. This shows how countries around the world were trying to gain as much territory as they could while it was available without fighting for it.

This got America thinking, they are getting a good deal so why shouldn’t we? Economics play a big part in imperialism. In order to expand our country, there was a need for raw materials, a need for overseas markets and surplus capital.This sent American investors across the world in search of just that. Asia, the Philippines, and Hawaii turned out to be great sources for all three. Investors moved into Asia when they realized that it could be a potential gold mine. This lead to what was known as the “Open Door Policy” created by William Hay.

After China was defeated by Japan in 1895, Countries such as Russia and Germany moved in. After they moved into China, many Americans feared that they would take control of their markets and other opportunities they had foreseen for themselves.America ran to Washington for help, instead, William Hay came up with a plan. His plan was the “Open Door Policy. ” He convince America to respect certain Chinese rights and the idea of fair competition. However, Hay had not consulted with China about his plan. China did not want Americans or another country to take part in their country. In 1900, the Boxer Rebellion came into action.

“Boxers,” known for their martial art abilities murdered more than two hundred foreigners and thousands of Chinese Christians and overwhelmed the foreign diplomatic community.In hopes of suppressing the rebellion and opening the doors to China, thousands of soldiers moved into China. After America had paid their debts in damages, Hay announced that the Open Door would “embrace the territorial integrity of China. ” We would have an even weaker bond with Asia if we hadn’t gained the Philippines during the Spanish American War. In Senator Albert J. Beveridge’s speech to 56th Congress, Beveridge says that, “the Philippines are ours forever..

.. And just beyond the Philippines are China’s illimitable markets.We will not retreat from either. ” He is suggesting that we, the United States, should not give up either China or the Philippines, if we do give up the Philippines we will lose our strong connection to Asia.

If we do keep and expand in the Pacific there will be a greater chance at having a bigger and stronger country. Hawaii also provided an opportunity for wealth, raw materials, and additional markets. American investors moved into Hawaii to buy the sugar plantations but Queen Liliuokalani told them, “Hawaii was for Hawaiians” which lead the U.S.

to back the revolution. Hawaii was annexed several years later. National Security was also important for an imperialistic beginning. Now that America has reached its boarders we have no other choice but to move and look forward. Our country is growing politically, socially and economically, it’s time to expand into other countries.

In order to keep and gain power “three things are needful: First, protection of the chief harbors… Secondly, naval force, the arm of offensive power, which alone enables a country to extend its influence outward.

Thirdly, no foreign state should henceforth acquire a coaling position within three thousand miles of San Francisco…” In this quote, Mahan is saying if we are going to expand we need to make sure our chief harbors and our land is protected as well as create a strong offensive power. This is the only way for us to maintain our power. Theodore Roosevelt feared that if Germany or Britain obtained Cuba or Venezuela, it would be a violation of the Monroe Doctrine. The Monroe Doctrine stated that all countries, including American, shouldn’t mess with Latin America as well as stated that America wouldn’t intervene unless they were being attacked.Because of this fear, Roosevelt created the Roosevelt Corollary. In this he announced “that in the even of future financial malfeasance by the Latin American nations, the United Stats itself would intervene, take over the customhouses, pay off the debts, and keep the troublesome Europeans on the other side of the Atlantic. ” Manifest Destiny was another force behind the new imperialism. Josiah Strong was a strong believer in the idea of manifest destiny.

He believed that it was God’s will for the Anglo-Saxon race take hold of the unoccupied lands before other countries.The Anglo-Saxon race sought to modernize, Christianize and civilize the world. He was impressed by the superiority of the Anglo-Saxon race and encourage Americans to be more like them in their religious views and their values. He thought that if we become more like them, manifest destiny will help us expand. Along with God’s will, Darwin’s theory of “survival of the fittest” will help us succeed. Theodore Roosevelt also believed in Darwinism. To him Darwinism meant that “the earth belonged to the strong and the fit.

His idea of Darwinism went along with his big stick policy, which basically said that if you can’t run your country right we, the United States will intervene. In Roosevelt’s annual message to Congress, he tells them that all the United States wants is for neighboring countries to be politically, socially, and economically stable. If a country cannot be that we will get involved, otherwise we will leave them alone. If we don’t get involved if they need our help we are going against the Monroe Doctrine. INSULAR CASES.Before the late nineteenth century and early twentieth centuries, America was isolated from the rest of the world, their only focus was in expanding throughout their territory.

During the turn of the twentieth century, America realized they needed to expand overseas. The only way this could be done was through an imperialistic beginning. The forces behind imperialism are as follows: economics, national security, and manifest destiny. United States expansionism used previous efforts of expansionism after the turn of the twentieth century.