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favor of the annexation of those islands. This message, sent to Congress in 1885, certainly tends not only to disprove that statement, but to refute it altogether, without some positive contrary declaration on the part of Mr. Cleveland himself.

It is true that in the past we have acquired territory, but it has been in pursuance of the policy which I have already indicated. We have acquired territory, but always within the temperate zone, always contiguous to the United States, always adjoining that which we already owned, a territory which possessed climate, soil, and (if people it had) people capable of governing themselves. We purchased by treaty Louisiana and Florida, and we annexed Texas by a joint resolution, admitting her as a State into the Union after securing the consent of her people and under those provisions of our Constitution which allow us to admit new States. Florida and Louisiana we also admitted by constitutional methods, under the power granted by the States to the Federal Governmentadmitted by treaty.

John Quincy Adams argued in favor of the acquisition of Florida on the ground of its being contiguous territory, and by inference all through his argument he also argues that he would have been opposed to its annexation if it had not joined


Let us inquire as to what territory we have rejected, and see how closely we have adhered to the doctrine laid down. In December, 1882, the Government of San Salvador, one of the Central American States, lying well within the Tropics, proposed annexation to the United States and we refused to receive it.

President Polk, in his message of April 29, 1848, after reciting an offer from Yucatan “to transfer the dominion and sovereignty of the peninsula to the United States," said:

Whilst it is not my purpose to recommend the adoption of any measure with a view to the acquisition of the dominion and sovereignty over Yucatan, yet according to our established policy we could not consent to a transfer of the "dominion and sovereignty” to any other power.

Congress took no action on this message.

It was not even discussed, so far as I can find. If it was, such discussion occurred in secret session; but the idea of acquiring sovereignty over a tropical country attracted so little attention that I can find practically no other record referring to the subject. Of more recent date efforts have been made to acquire territory in the Tropics, always with the same result. In 1866 a proposition was made to acquire Santo Domingo. Santo Domingo lies east of Cuba, having an area of 28,000 square miles, including the Republic of Hayti. It is a tropical country. It lies about 1,000 miles from our shore. General Grant, in his second annual message, in 1870, makes a statement in regard to the acquisition of Santo Domingo, and I am going to read it, because it is word for word and line for line the argument made for the acquisition of Hawaii. The Committee on Foreign Relations must have read this message. Every advocate on the stump and in the Senate urging the acquisition of Hawaii must have read this message, for they come so near copying the language that we certainly can not believe they were ignorant of it.

During the last session of Congress a treaty for the annexation of the Republic of San Domingo to the United States failed to receive the requisite two-thirds vote of the Senate. I was thoroughly convinced then that the best interests of this country, commercially and materially, demanded its ratification. Time has only confirmed me in this view. I now firmly believe that the moment it is known that the United States have entirely abandoned the project of accepting as a part of its territory the island of San Domingo, a free port will be negotiated for by European nations in the Bay of Samana. A large commercial city will spring up, to which we will be tributary without receiving corresponding benefits, and then will be seen the folly of our rejecting so great a prize. The Government of San Domingo has voluntarily sought this annexation. It is a weak power, numbering probably less than 120,000 souls, and yet possessing one of the richest territories under the sun, capable of supporting a population of 10,000,000 people in luxury. The people of San Domingo are not capable of maintaining themselves in their present condition, and must look for outside support. They yearn for the protection of our free institutions and laws—our progress and civilization. Shall we refuse them ?

Exactly the same argument, a threat of injury, the promise of a prize, together with a proposition to furnish a worthless people with a decent government. There is the very argument presented by the advocates of the annxation of Hawaii; first, the danger to our Pacific coast if we do not accept these islands; second, a prize in the great richness of tropical products; third, that we shall furnish these people a share of the Government we possess and protection against incursions which they imagine may arise from foreign foes

The acquisition of San Domingo is desirable because of its geographical position. It commands the entrance to the Caribbean Sea and the Isthmus transit of commerce. It possesses the richest soil, best and most capacious harbors, most salubrious climate, and the most valuable products of the forest, mine, and soil of any of the West India Islands. Its possession by us will in a few years build up a coastwise commerce of immense magnitude, which will go far toward restoring to us our lost merchant marine.

The same argument exactly. We have been told about the vast commercial relations with Hawaii and the number of ships that come and go bearing the American flag.

It will give to us those articles which we consume so largely and do not produce, thus equalizing our exports and imports. In case of foreign war it will give us command of all the islands referred to, and thus prevent an enemy from ever again possessing himself of rendezvous upon our very coast. At present our coast trade between the States bordering on the Atlantic and those bordering on the Gulf of Mexico is cut into by the Bahamas and the Antilles. Twice we must, as it were, pass through foreign countries to get by sea from Georgia to the west coast of Florida.

San Domingo, with a stable government under which her immense resources can be developed, will give remunerative wages to tens of thousands of laborers not now upon the island.

The same argument exactly—annex Hawaii and the American laborer will go there. “Annex Santo Domingo," Grant said, "and American laborers will go there.”

Then, as now, we were inviting laborers from other lands to come here, our own country being undeveloped, with vast resources untouched.

This labor will take advantage of every available means of transportation to abandon the adjacent islands and seek the blessings of

freedom and its sequence-each inhabitant receiving the reward of his own labor. Porto Rico and Cuba will have to abolish slavery, as a measure of self-preservation, to retain their laborers.

San Domingo will become a large consumer of the products of Northern farms and manufactories. The cheap rate at which her citizens can be furnished with food, tools, and machinery will make it necessary that contiguous islands should have the same advantages in order to compete in the production of sugar, coffee, tobacco, tropical fruits, etc. This will open to us a still wider market for our products. The production of our own supply of these articles will cut off more than one hundred millions of our annual imports, besides largely increasing our exports. With such a picture it is easy to see how our large debt abroad is ultimately to be extinguished. With a balance of trade against us (including interest on bonds held by foreigners and money spent by our citizens traveling in foreign lands) equal to the entire yield of the precious metals in this country, it is not so easy to see how this result is to be otherwise accomplished.

The acquisition of San Domingo is an adherence to the “Monroe doctrine"; it is a measure of national protection; it is asserting our just claim to a controlling influence over the great commercial traffic soon to flow from west to east by way of the Isthmus of Darien; it is to build up our merchant marine; it is to furnish new markets for the products of our farms, shops, and manufactories.


In view of the importance of this question, I earnestly urge upon Congress early action expressive of its views as to the best means of acquiring San Domingo. My suggestion is that, by joint resolution of the two Houses of Congress, the Executive be authorized to appoint a commission to negotiate a treaty with the authorities of San Domingo for the acquisition of that island, and that an appropriation be made to defray the expenses of such commission.

Such a joint resolution was introduced; it passed the Senate, went to the House, and they refused to concur in it. With this glowing picture, with the great power Grant possessedhowever, I understand there is no record that Grant exerted that power in an unconstitutional manner—but with the great power Grant possessed, he was unable to secure from Congress one step in the direction of the acquisition of Santo Domingo. So firmly in the minds of our people at that time was the determination that our area was large enough, and that only people could be admitted to the privileges of citizenship within this Republic who were capable of self-government, that even the great power and influence of Grant were unable to overturn the practice, precedent, policy, and principle upon which this Government was founded and which up to that time had maintained itself.

There is no record, however, that Grant used unfairly, unjustly, unconstitutionally, the power of his position. I believe that Grant was too patriotic to have done such a thing. But rumors come to our ears that in this contest Senators and Members are called to the White House and told that this is the Administration policy and that they must support it, and intimations of favors, not direct, for that is unnecessary, are used to force the Senate of the United States to break down the century-old policy of this country and compel the acquisition of territory within the Tropics and beyond our own borders.

Mr. Blaine says in his book, speaking of Santo Domingo:

The territory included in the Dominican Republic is the eastern portion of the island of San Domingo, originally known as Hispaniola. It embraces perhaps two-thirds of the whole. The western part forms the Republic of Haiti. With the exception of Cuba, the island is the largest of the West India group. The total area is about 28,000 square miles—equivalent to Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Rhode Island combined. President Grant placed extravagant estimates upon the value of the territory which he supposed was now acquired under the Babcock treaties. In his message to Congress he expressed the belief that the island would yield to the United States all the sugar, coffee, tobacco, and other tropical products which the country would consume. “The production of our supply of these articles," said the President, "will cut off more than $100,000,000 of our annual imports, besides largely increasing our exports.

Mr. President, that is true. If we should acquire a tropical country where they produce sugar and coffee enough · for our needs, we would no longer levy a tariff upon those products, but they would be admitted free of duty. It would decrease the balance of trade against us and make it larger in our favor. But what advantage would the people of the United States derive from that if the population which produced those products were incapable of self-government, in

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