The Season for Annexation- By the mid 1800s, American-owned sugar plantations accounted for ¾ of the islands wealth. Laborers from Japan, China, and Portugal came by the thousands to work the plantations. By 1900, foreigners and immigrant workers outnumbered native-born Hawaiians three-to-one.
1875- The US agreed to import Hawaiian sugar duty-free (tax free)
Hawaiian sugar production increased nine times over the next 15 years
1890- The McKinley Tariff removed the duty-free status of Hawaiian sugar, causing the islands sugar growers to compete in the American market
Aug. 12, 1898, Congress proclaimed Hawaii an American territory.
Support and Opposition to American Imperialism William McKinley’s reelection in 1900 confirmed that a majority of Americans favored his policies. During his first term in office, beginning in 1897, support for U.S. imperialism would grow, and America would gain an empire.
***U.S. business people who had significant investments in Cuba were supportive of the Spanish-American War, which began in April 1898.
***Newspapers such as William Randolph Hearst’s New York Journal sensationalized stories of Spanish atrocities during the Cuban rebellion, and stoked the calls for war following the explosion of the U.S.S. Maine, largely in order to increase circulation of their newspapers…as well as their profits.