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Imperialism and the
United States
■Essential Question:
–What role did the United
States play as an imperial
power in Asia
& Latin America?
115 years after gaining independence from Britain, the
United States was an industrial & imperial power
How did this happen?
The United States: 1790-1820
The U.S. Economy:
From 1790 to 1820,
most Americans were
small-scale farmers
But, a few early textile
mills were built in
New England and…
...Eli Whitney’s
cotton gin led to a
boom in southern
cotton & slavery
The United States: 1790-1820
U.S. Territorial Expansion: The American population
expanded across the Appalachian Mountains
In 1803, Jefferson doubled the size of the USA &
gained control of the Mississippi River when he
bought Louisiana from French Emperor Napoleon
The United States: 1790-1820
U.S. Foreign Policy:
In these early years, the
American government was
committed to neutrality in
regards to foreign policy
The United States: 1820-1860
The U.S. Economy:
From 1820 to 1860,
Southern cotton
made up 60% of
American exports
The North had a
diverse economy
based on farming
textile production,
& manufacturing
Western farmers
were connected to
Northern industry
by roads, canals, &
The United States: 1820-1860
U.S. Territorial Expansion:
From 1820 to 1860, the USA
claimed its “Manifest Destiny”
& gained new western lands in
Texas, Oregon, & the southwest
By 1850, the USA had all lands
from the Atlantic to the Pacific
The United States: 1820-1860
U.S. Foreign Policy:
In 1823, the U.S.
declared a new
foreign policy called
the Monroe Doctrine
The USA remained
committed to
neutrality in Europe…
...but promised to
protect the Western
Hemisphere from
European colonization
The United States: 1860-1900
The U.S. Economy:
From 1860 to 1900,
the United States
experienced an
industrial revolution
The USA became
a world leader in
railroads, oil, steel,
& electricity
As America became
more industrialized,
it experienced a rise
in urbanization &
The United States: 1860-1900
U.S. Territorial Expansion:
The USA expanded
beyond North America
& imperialized by gaining
new colonies in
Latin America & Asia
The United States: 1860-1900
U.S. Foreign Policy:
With its industry & strong
navy, the USA became the
“police power” of the
Western Hemisphere
Why did the United States imperialize?
American factories
By 1890, there were no
needed new sources of
new lands in the west to
raw materials & markets expand into & Americans
to sell their goods
wanted overseas colonies
Why did the United States imperialize?
Americans felt the need to keep
up with European imperialists
The U.S. had a modern navy &
belief that it could compete
with other powerful nations
Why did the United States imperialize?
Like Europeans,
Americans believed in
Social Darwinism &
that they had a duty to
“civilize” the “inferior
races” of the world
So, what did the
USA gain during
Age of Imperialism?
From 1820
1891, Queen
Americans moved
Liliuokalani came to
to Hawaii as
power & tried to reduce
missionaries & fruit the power of Americans
plantation owners
living in Hawaii
Americans overthrew Queen Liliuokalani in
1893 & Hawaii was annexed by the USA in 1898
By theU.S.
Imperialism: CHINA
carved China into spheres of influence, giving
them exclusive trade rights in Chinese ports
In 1899, the USA declared an
Open Door Policy in China to allow
free trade by any nation in any port
In 1895, Cubans declared their independence
from Spain; To put down the revolution,
Spain used brutal tactics (like starvation)
In 1898, the U.S. sent the USS Maine to
Cuba to protect American interests there;
After the ship mysteriously exploded,
Americans declared war on Spain
The U.S. easily won the Spanish-American War
to free Cuba & the Philippines from Spain
As a result of the Spanish-American War,
Cuba gained its independence & the USA
annexed the Philippines, Guam, & Puerto Rico
When the Philippine people were not
given independence, they led an
unsuccessful rebellion against the USA in
the Filipino-American War in 1899
1904, the USA
a world
power &
in Latin
declared that it had “police power” to protect
Latin America from European imperialism
By 1900,
one of America’s
main CANAL
goals was to build a canal in Panama
After the Colombian gov’t rejected
America’s offer to build a canal in
Panama, the U.S. encouraged
Panama to break from Colombia
In 1903, Panama allowed
the U.S. to build the
canal & the canal was
completed by 1914
Click here to see how the Panama Canal works
By the 20th century, the U.S. was a world power
The U.S. was a world
leader in industry &
had one of the most
powerful militaries
in the world
The USA gained
Hawaii, Puerto Rico,
Guam, Philippines…
…created an Open
Door policy in China…
…& had influence
over Latin America