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  • Spanish American War Of 1898

    Didnt see a thread started on this particular topic. So I will start.

    This particular conflict came to light for me cause of the TNT movie Rough Riders a few years back. Ever since, Ive been steadily gaining interest in it.

    Lets start a thread on it.


    Was the conflict started to free Cuba or to make it safe for purchase for the good of the sugar investors such as Empire Sugar? Ive heard both. Cause if you remember correctly, On top of San Juan Hill, the block hose that was used as an ammo dump and HQ, was the plantation house for Empire Sugar in that particular region. I kind of find it funny though.

    Also another thing I found that was odd, most of the volunteers came from Arizona and New Mexico. So much so, that McKinley had to put a halt to the regiments that were being formed. The volunteers actually outnumbered the standing army.

    I would really like this thread to continue
    The Texan has spoken, and approves of this message

  • #2
    First off, Volunteers were raised in every state and territory. The main problem was shipping. Many Volunteers were sent off to the Phillipines and Puerto Rico. I seem to recall the Kansas Volunteers in the PI for some unknown reason... I remember a Roughrider movie on TV a couple of years back describing the chaos of loading and transport of the American Army going to Cuba. Just let a National guard unit today try to jump ahead of another Guard unit heading for ships!

    I say the main push for war over Cuba was from Business and the Newspaper machines of people like William Hearst. War sells newspapers! There was also some left over sentiment from the Southern States to annex Cuba as a Southern State. Didn't happen, but there was still the inlterest.

    Add a little touch of racism as all those Anglo Saxon politicians thought they could run Cuba and Latin America better than the locals.

    Pruitt
    Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

    Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

    by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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    • #3
      books by the jillions pick an author.......some good websites for general info.


      1. http://www.pbs.org/crucible/

      2. http://www.smplanet.com/imperialism/remember.html

      3. http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:...nk&cd=10&gl=us

      4. http://www.spanishamericanwar.com/

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      • #4
        I like this quote from Joseph Wheeler who was a general in the Spanish War, considering the Civil War had ended 30+ years earlier.

        "We’ve got the damn Yankees on the run!”

        I also have seen some intrigue as to whether the Maine was sabatoged or had mechanical problems that lead to its explosion. I think an investigation was done back in the 70's that came to the conclusion that something happened with a boiler, but then I think another investigation was done that said they still weren't sure. I have also read that the Spanish War helped bring the country together and lead to some healing, since many people were still divided from the Civil War.

        "Get three coffins ready" The Man With No Name

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        • #5
          I think the most plausable explanation is an explosion caused by a coal bunker fire. Piles of Coal spontaneously start to catch fire, given proper conditions. It happened on a number of naval vessels. A vessel visiting a foreign port might well leave its magazine doors open...

          Pruitt
          Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

          Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

          by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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          • #6
            I was watching the movie Rough Riders the other day and I was unaware that the Germans helped the Spanish as volunteers. I really never knew that. I knew they supplied arms and such, but didnt know how deeply they were involved.
            The Texan has spoken, and approves of this message

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
              First off, Volunteers were raised in every state and territory. The main problem was shipping. Many Volunteers were sent off to the Phillipines and Puerto Rico. I seem to recall the Kansas Volunteers in the PI for some unknown reason... I remember a Roughrider movie on TV a couple of years back describing the chaos of loading and transport of the American Army going to Cuba. Just let a National guard unit today try to jump ahead of another Guard unit heading for ships!

              I say the main push for war over Cuba was from Business and the Newspaper machines of people like William Hearst. War sells newspapers! There was also some left over sentiment from the Southern States to annex Cuba as a Southern State. Didn't happen, but there was still the inlterest.

              Add a little touch of racism as all those Anglo Saxon politicians thought they could run Cuba and Latin America better than the locals.

              Pruitt

              NIce post, think you covered most of the major topics. GGGrand Uncle was recruited from Kansas. Died of Typhus in training camp like so many others. I agree that Hearst and the Sugar Interests were involved in generating interest among the population for a War with Spain. Be careful of the Movie, I enjoyed it, but as usual it was pretty bad history in spots.

              But there was also interest by the US Navy to correct a major problem the US had regarding "coaling stations" in various important areas of the world. The "Steam Driven" Navy needed installations for fuel. We were leasing much of what we were using from other Nations. Many Americans hated the idea of "Empire", thus it was a major problem. War with Spain was important because 1. They held certain key Island areas. 2. They were weak enough to be defeated.

              Like most conflicts, the causes were quite complex. We hyped the people on "Spanish" crimes against the poor Cuban people: the least of the issues about which US Government and Buisness leaders were worried.
              My Avatar: Ivan W. Henderson Gunner/navigator B-25-26. 117 combat missions. Both Theaters. 11 confirmed kills. DSC.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
                I think the most plausable explanation is an explosion caused by a coal bunker fire. Piles of Coal spontaneously start to catch fire, given proper conditions. It happened on a number of naval vessels. A vessel visiting a foreign port might well leave its magazine doors open...

                Pruitt
                I read that the sinking of the Maine was probably caused by spontaneous combustion fires in its coal bunkers that adjoined an ammunition magazine. It is thought that the steel bulkhead separating the two areas became red-hot from the bunker fire and detonated the stored powder there.

                Re: German advisors. I read that the Spanish troops in Cuba were armed with modern Mauser, bolt action rifles, whereas the American Regulars were largely armed with "Trapdoor Springfield" Rifles converted and left over from the Civil War. Roosevelt's Rough Riders were the exception as they were armed with modern Krag-Jorgeson Carbines.
                "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

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                • #9
                  It was a miserable little war, but what the heck, we had been at peace for over 30 years. The US hasn't been at peace that long since then.

                  My grandfather was in Co D 2nd Volunteer Engineers, out of Indiana. They served in Cuba from late 1898-spring '99. Anybody else with past relatives in the war?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CCWO View Post
                    It was a miserable little war, but what the heck, we had been at peace for over 30 years. The US hasn't been at peace that long since then.
                    You don't consider the numerous US Military Campaigns of the Plains Indian wars of the 1860's-90 to be a state of war?
                    "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

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                    • #11
                      During my early teens I would do lawnwork to supplement my funds. One of my customers was an elderly gentleman. His last name was Rosenthal. Occasionally he would bring a cold drink and reminisce about his service during the Spanish American conflict. He had been a member of the Rough Riders and would show me various pictures depicting activities at Tampa Fl and locations in Cuba. His decorations included a campaign medal and another my memory fails me but I believe was a merit or valor award.

                      He was never a braggard, just a nice old man. I always felt he was passing on advice to a youngster preparing to become a man.

                      I believe his first name was Joe. I haven't thought of him in years. This thread reminded this now "old" guy of a pleasant memory.

                      For Joe:

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                        You don't consider the numerous US Military Campaigns of the Plains Indian wars of the 1860's-90 to be a state of war?
                        Maybe not one that the government called for volunteers and tried to mobilize the entire country. But you're right.
                        Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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                        • #13
                          Regulars had Krag-Jorgensens

                          The Regulars were armed with Krags, the Volunteer units with Springfields, and Gatlings were employed almost as artillery. Volunteer units were used in all theaters of the war. The best account on the campaign in Puerto Rico, which confirmed Nelson Miles as a general of some value as a strategist, is Capitan (Spanish Artillery) Angel Rivero's "Cronica de la Guerra Hispano-Americana en Puerto Rico." Rivero served as commander of Castle San Cristobal during the war, and previous to that had been incarcerated in El Morro for having dared to write a newspaper article favorable to granting Puerto Rico autonomy under Spain. Lots of photos and maps, and letters from many of the major participants from both sides. After the war, Rivero stayed in Puerto Rico to become a teacher, turning down a commission in the U.S. Army's newly formed "Porto Rico Regiment" with the words: "A man can only swear an oath before God once in his lifetime", and he had already sworn his to the service of Spain. He greatly admired the United States, however joyfully he would have blown to hell any US Navy ship that came within the range of his guns during the war.
                          dit: Lirelou

                          Phong trần mài một lưỡi gươm, Những loài giá áo túi cơm sá ǵ!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by lirelou View Post
                            The Regulars were armed with Krags, the Volunteer units with Springfields, and Gatlings were employed almost as artillery. Volunteer units were used in all theaters of the war. The best account on the campaign in Puerto Rico, which confirmed Nelson Miles as a general of some value as a strategist, is Capitan (Spanish Artillery) Angel Rivero's "Cronica de la Guerra Hispano-Americana en Puerto Rico." Rivero served as commander of Castle San Cristobal during the war, and previous to that had been incarcerated in El Morro for having dared to write a newspaper article favorable to granting Puerto Rico autonomy under Spain. Lots of photos and maps, and letters from many of the major participants from both sides. After the war, Rivero stayed in Puerto Rico to become a teacher, turning down a commission in the U.S. Army's newly formed "Porto Rico Regiment" with the words: "A man can only swear an oath before God once in his lifetime", and he had already sworn his to the service of Spain. He greatly admired the United States, however joyfully he would have blown to hell any US Navy ship that came within the range of his guns during the war.
                            IIRC, the majority of US Regulars in Cuba were still using "Trapdoor Springfields" modified and left over from the Civil War although Krags were seen on the battlefields.
                            "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

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                            • #15
                              I'll take your word for it. Could you please reference me to some history or work on the Spanish American war that might have a photo of Regular troops armed with Springfield 1866 45-70 rifles? Rivero's book covers only Puerto Rico, and all the photos of Regular units, by far the minority in that campaign, show Krag-Jorgensens. Indeed, I believe the Krag was also used at Wounded Knee.
                              dit: Lirelou

                              Phong trần mài một lưỡi gươm, Những loài giá áo túi cơm sá ǵ!

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