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Old November 13th, 2017, 04:41 PM   #1
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Seizing a golden chande. the Americas and the Pacific for the US


When revolution breaks out in New Spain, president Madison realizes that this is a unique opportunity for the US to expand at an unprecedented rate its territory, economy, resources, population and trade into Latin America and the Pacific. He notices that the Isthmus of Tehuantepec is undefended and unused, yet it is an excellent shortcut to the weak, hardly populated coast of the Americas, to invade Hawaii, guam, the Philippines, etc, and to gain access to the immense Asian market and labor force.

On Ocober 2, 1810 he addresses Congress:

Honorable Congressmen,
Shorty after the blessing of the Louisiana purchase, God has presented the US with an even more golden, a unique, opportunity.

Spain has lost its navy in Trafalgar and is engaged in guerrilla warfare against Napoleon. It is so desperate, that for the first time in its long history, it has asked Britain, its Nemesis, to become its ally and fight Napoleon in Spain.

Moreover, rebellion has erupted in New Spain and it is rapidly spreading in South America and Spain is completely unable to reinforce and supply its small forces fighting hundreds of thousands of rebels.

Many Americans (including illustrious president Jefferson) have stated that invading Canada will be very easy. I beg to differ strongly. Our tiny navy with a handful of frigates and no ships of the line is no match for the mighty 100 ships of the line and 200 frigates of the RN. Similarly, our small, inexpericed army is no match for experienced British forces, which have been fighting Napoleon for a decade. Furthermore, the murderous Canadina winter is an even more formidable foe, as Arnold expereienced when he lost most of his forced attacking Quebec in vain, which was decimated by frostbite and hunger.

The RN will prevent us from invading the valuable and strategically located Maritime Provinces, so even if we succeded seizing Quebec and Montreal, etc, we would not be able to transport by sea anything or anybody into them, even in the sumer (they are isolated by ice min the winter). So it would be a moot victory. In the meantime, the RN will ravage our ships and coastal towns and cities and blockade our trade maybe for years, ruining our economy. Britian can build war and merchant ships much faster than the US, to replace its losses, especially if we are not making money from trade and have no access to imported goods, while British economy and commerce thrive.

Canada has hundreds of thousands of whites and aggressive, well armed Indians, and thousands of British regulars concentrated near the Pacific coast. In contrast, huge California, Texas, Florida, Uruguay-Paraguay, the Istmus of Tehuantepec and Chile combined have under 20,000 white or creole people and a few hundred poorly armed troops spread ridiculously thinly and without forthcomming supplies or reinforcements. In lands, which can be invaded year-around.

The Isthmus of Tehuantepec is undefensed, nearly uninhabitted and it is an invaluable shortcut to the Pacific. We can build a transcontinental road across it in a couple of years, if Americans and hired, poor New Spaniards build from the Atlantic, while Americans, Japanese immigrants and New Spaniards build from the Pacific. Once the road starts operating, we can broaden it to expedite traffic and gradually shorten it by cutting through curves, digging tunnels, etc,

The transcontinental road with allow millions of US and European settlers to reach the endless, sparsely populated Pacific coast after a short crossing, year-around and in much healthier climate than Panama or Nicaragua. Tehuantepec is much closer to US and Europe than Panama. Therefore, undefended Tehuantec is worth a thousand Canadas, as the gate to unlimited rerritorial and trade expansion in the Pacific.

In stark contrast to the ridiculous 20,000 whites or creoles spread over an area larger than the US in the mentioned Spanish territories, Japan has about 20 million people (a comparable population to ours!) crowded mostly in 5 mountanous islands with a smaller combined area than California´s (with very little farmland!), much smaller than Texas' and only a very small fraction of Uruguay-Paraguay's. We must take advantage of this untapped source of laborers, settlers, troops, etc, to help us seize and settle the weak and huge Pacific Americas.

The US must seize the day, occupy Tehuantepec now and start building a road as soon as possible. Spain cannot afford war with us and will hardly notice the invasion, since it does not include any valuable territory, only neglected wasteland. It will certainly complain and perhaps bluff with declaring war. In which case we will counter that in case of war, the US eill immediately start supplying rebels throughout the Americans with as many weapons, munitions and any supplies they want and can afford to buy, sink the few remaining Spanish warships and seize Spanish merchant ships (the USN and privateers) and invade the almost uninhabitted and porrly defended Florida, Texas, California, U-ruguay-Paraguay and Chile and expand from the Tehuantepec beachheads.

On the other hand, if instead of declaring war, Spain ceded the mentioned territories to the US within 3 months, we shall deliver 4 million dollars worth of weapons, munitions, army supplies (food, tents, sheets, bandages, opium, etc,), delivered in any American ports specified along the Atlantic. The US will also send troops and naval support, if requested to put down the rebellions. Spain will be able to use the transcontinental road to move men and supplies from one ocean to another.

If we settle California, Texas, Florida, Uruguay-Paraguay and Chile rapidly with more people in a year than Spain has sent in 300 years, we shall certainly find valuable minerals, farmland, lumber, medicinal herbs, etc, which will accelerate migration to the Pacific.
It wasn't until the XVIII century that diamonds and gold were found by Brazilian intruders in Paraguayan territory, which Brazil seized (it was so remote that it could only be accessed by river from Brazil, so Spain simply ceded it).
It wasn't until recently that Cook discovered invaluable Hawaii (Spain did not, despite 250 years of yearly Manila and Acapulco galleons, the former saling east at California's latitude and the latter sailing west south of Hawaii and Spain never explored the area, close to Acapulco).
It wasn't until recently that emeralds and gold were found in Colombia, saltpeter in coastal Peru and tin in deep inland, Peru.

Please do not waste this Godgiven chance to open the gate to the weak, rich and immense Pacific. pass bills to greatly expand our armed forces and shipyard capacity, to seize Tehuantepec and build the transcontinental road, to hire and transport thousands young Japanese men to build, join the armed forces and to settle new territories. To hire thousands of New Spaniards to build the road. To promote migration of thousands of Americans to settle Texas, etc, rapidly, in case of war or cession and to invite Canadians to move south, to settle huge areas with year-round decent climate, sunlight and access. To join tha US armed forces to see the Pacific and to take part in unprecedented expansion.

Thank you for your time and attention.

Last edited by ruthenium; November 13th, 2017 at 04:50 PM.
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Old November 13th, 2017, 06:43 PM   #2
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What is the source? Did Madison ever make such a speech? I doubt he would speak that way in public.

Madison's speech asking for a declaration of war against Britain in 1812 talked about British offenses against US merchant ships and so on, but not about the conquest of Canada. The US did attack Spanish Florida in the 1810s. The US was not in position to invade Mexico at that time. Madison would not address Congress about a war with Spain unless he was asking for a declaration of war. He also would not speak publicly about the ease of conquest and so on, even if that was the real objective.

Last edited by betgo; November 13th, 2017 at 07:01 PM.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 10:10 AM   #3

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This speech is not listed among those in his official papers. Maybe you have the date wrong? At this time, President Madison appears to be concerned pretty much with relations with Britain and France.

Papers of James Madison
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Old November 14th, 2017, 10:21 AM   #4

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But this speech is listed, which takes the opposite side from that in the speech alleged by the OP, but in 1815:

James Madison: Proclamation 21—Warning Against Unauthorized Military Expedition Against the Dominions of Spain

So maybe the OP can cite us to the source for the speech he or she alleges President Madison made.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 02:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by betgo View Post
What is the source? Did Madison ever make such a speech? I doubt he would speak that way in public.

Madison's speech asking for a declaration of war against Britain in 1812 talked about British offenses against US merchant ships and so on, but not about the conquest of Canada. The US did attack Spanish Florida in the 1810s. The US was not in position to invade Mexico at that time. Madison would not address Congress about a war with Spain unless he was asking for a declaration of war. He also would not speak publicly about the ease of conquest and so on, even if that was the real objective.
This is alternate history. The address is obviously fictional, based on real information.

Madison´s report to Congress in 1812 was not a speech it was an absurd list of well known grievances, without leadership (he did not ask for war, he merely said do what you want) or regard to consequences (Madison himself opposed war, but he was too spineless to argue against it).
The loss of a few hundred British sailors in US ships over long years and the other grievances were a ridiculous casus belli when the USN, army and economy were absolutely not in a position to fight the RN, etc, Cobfgress had even closed the Bank of the US, while the Bank of England was thriving and would continue benefitted from trade even during war, thanks to the RN. The RN could build a lot more ships to replace losses and had 200 frigates to lose. The use could not replace losses fast enough (the loss of Chesapeke ment the loss of 12% of the frigates), either in war or merchant ships.

Westerners and Irish Americans wanted war, New England traders opposed it. Congress made its worst decision in history, after the bills to grant 10% of US land to RR companies for building 2,000 miles of RR from Omaha to Sacramento. The US was lucky that Britain did not wipe out the coast and the USN and merchant fleet completely.

Many Americans argue proudly that the 8 American frigates were better, faster and larger than British frigates. This is true only of the smaller RN frigates. 5th rate frigates were larger, had more and larger guns and were faster, more maneuverable and more numerous than American frigates.

The US was certainly in no position to stop trading with Britain (its main trade parter), and with the rest of the world owing to blockade and American ship seizure at sea and certainly to fight the RN (which shelled cities, landed troops to burn down Washington, etc, and seized Chesapeake after a 12 minute battle) and the experienced British army and Braves, than it was to invade Texas.

As I wrote, the US was obviously in a position to seize undefended Tehuantepec and in case of war, to invade the huge territories listed, which indeed had ridiculously few settlers and troops and unarmed. poorly led Native Americans, a different world from Tecumseh´s confederation, armed and supported and supplied during the war by Britain. All concentrated by the thousands in a small area of Canada.

If you read carefully the address urges immediate invasion of undefended Tehuantepec (while Spain cannot respond and New Spain is fighting large rebel forces with a tiny, unsupplied or reinforced army), construction of a transcontinental road, expansion of the army and navy and hiring Japanese young men to build the road, etc, and attracting others as settlers. The alusion to war is conditioned on Spain refusing to cede territories it has not settled in 300 years, and which the US will exchange for arms, munitions and support by the US to put down the rebellions. Carrot and stick against a desperate, agonizing empire without alternative to losing all its mines, cacao, vanilla, etc, in the Americas.

This Madison does have a brain and guts, he leads the nation into the path of formidable prosperity and least resistance, instead of into a brickwall, an unwinnable, pointless war which he knows will ruin the US economy and the US army reputation for years, but which the public is pressing Congress to declare.

Last edited by ruthenium; November 14th, 2017 at 03:53 PM.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 03:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Vagamundo View Post
But this speech is listed, which takes the opposite side from that in the speech alleged by the OP, but in 1815:

James Madison: Proclamation 21—Warning Against Unauthorized Military Expedition Against the Dominions of Spain

So maybe the OP can cite us to the source for the speech he or she alleges President Madison made.
This proclamation (not a speech) takes place after the US army had incurred terrible losses and was proven to be inefficient in combat against large, defending, well armed, concentrated and experienced British and Indian forces.

Moreover, Madison is not arguing against the US army and USN invading New Spain, he is arguing against civilians illegally taking up arms against New Spain and starting a war, without congressional authorization, which even the army or navy cannot cannot do.

In 1810 the US army and USN felt confident and would have been more effective against a handful of creole, unsupplied and unreinforced New Spain troops, who were barely surviving against the rebel hoards and had no navy to fight the invasion of Tehuantepec.

As implied by ATL Madison, Tehuantepec is free for the taking, Spain and New Spain cannot respond and as the gate to the Pacific (a golden short cut) and a way to split New Spain and to force Spain to cede a huge territory, for fear of the US supplying and aiding the rebels) it is worth a thousand frozen Canadas (without access to the sea, since the RN would secure the Maritime provinces.

The incredible thing is that for 250 years Spain hauled the good from the single Manila galleon from Acapulco all the way to Veracruz, through the very high Puebla, etc, on oxcarts, along pousy roads, at hellacious cost and over many long months, instead of building the road suggested by ATL Madison, which if Spain cedes the territories requested, will allow Spain to renew the Manila galleon trade (with several galleons per year), transporting goods on American mule-drawn drays (built in a factory in Tehuantepec) in a short time, at a much lower cost across the fine, short Tehuantepec.

Last edited by ruthenium; November 14th, 2017 at 03:54 PM.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 03:37 PM   #7
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Continuing with the thread.

Within 3 months of the American landing in Tehuantepec, Mexican rebells approach under a white flag and ask the US commander for the US to sell arms, munitions and supplies to the independists, which after seizing power will grant permission to build the road and open trade to the US.

The commander tells them that he will send their request to Washington within a week , but asks them to be patient, for even if the request is granted, goods will not arrive for at least 6 months, immediate payment will be required and the price will not be negotiable and will probably be high, since the US army will need a lot of arms and munitions itself if Spain declares war.

As soon as Madison receives the rebels' request, he summons Spanish diplomats, shows it to them and delivers this ultimatum: Unless Spain cedes the requested territories within 3 months, the US will start delivering as many arms, munitions, supplies, etc, to the rebels as they can afford to buy (paying with gold, silver, vanilla, cacao, coffee, sugar, etc,) everywhere in the Americas, start sinking Spanish warships and seizing Spanish merchant ships all over the world, blockade Veracruz, etc, and invade those undefended territories and Acapulco with large forces.

On the other hand, if Spain does cede the territories, we shall deliver to the isolated Spanish troops, as fast as possible, 4 million dollars worth of any requested American foods, coal, fabrics, war materiel, etc, in any Atlantic ports specified and provide troops and naval support wherever needed until the rebellions are smothered or a year after the land cession, whichever comes first. Spain will be able to transport in 2 weeks the Manila galleon goods across Tehuantepec on American mule drawn drays, instead of the long months and huge expense of on oxcarts along the poorly maintained, endless, tortuous and high Acapulco-Puebla-Veracruz. The more profittable and expedient Manila trade will allow Spain to send 2 or more Manila galleons per year (Holland sends over 9), greatly enhancing Spanish trade. The US will even trade US goods for Manila goods and sell them only in its territories (it will not interfere with Spanish good trade in Europe).

Last edited by ruthenium; November 14th, 2017 at 03:49 PM.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 07:06 PM   #8
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No US President would make a speech like that. Look at Madison's speech asking for a Declaration of War against Britain. Polk claimed the Mexicans had killed US troops on US territory. There was no official talk of conquest.

The US did invade and annex West Florida (southern Alabama and Mississippi during the War of 1812. In 1818, Andrew Jackson invaded what is now Florida. Spain ceded it as part of an agreement on the border between the US and New Spain (later Mexico and of course all the regions close to the border were ceded after war with Mexico).

I agree that war in the early 1810s with Spain would have made much more sense than war with Britain. However, the US could only have invaded Florida and Texas. The US did not have the navy and other resources to go after the whole Spanish Empire. Also, it did not have the political system to rule vast areas with a different language and culture.

Britain did aid some of the rebels in Spanish America. Britain and the US protected the newly independent countries from European reconquest. That is the origin of the Monroe Doctrine.
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Old November 15th, 2017, 08:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by betgo View Post
No US President would make a speech like that. Look at Madison's speech asking for a Declaration of War against Britain. Polk claimed the Mexicans had killed US troops on US territory. There was no official talk of conquest.

The US did invade and annex West Florida (southern Alabama and Mississippi during the War of 1812. In 1818, Andrew Jackson invaded what is now Florida. Spain ceded it as part of an agreement on the border between the US and New Spain (later Mexico and of course all the regions close to the border were ceded after war with Mexico).

The US did not have the navy and other resources to go after the whole Spanish Empire. Also, it did not have the political system to rule vast areas with a different language and culture.

Britain did aid some of the rebels in Spanish America. Britain and the US protected the newly independent countries from European reconquest. That is the origin of the Monroe Doctrine.
So the USN, merchant fleet and army are not strong enough to seize undefended Tehuantepec from a country practically without a navy and merchant fleet and a ridiculous, unsupplied, unreinforced army fighting hundreds of thousands of rebels far away from Tehuantepec and throughout the Americas, but it is strong enough to fight the 1,000 warships of the RN, the largest merchant fleet, the strongest economy and a most experienced army and the best organized, armed and supplied Native Americans, without US trade?

It is easier to suddenly rule over a couple of thousand Spaniards and creoles in Texas and each of the other huge areas mentioned than it is to suddenly rule over hundreds of thousands of Native Americans and French in the small Ohio Valley and then even more foreign language speakers, even more suddenly in the large Louisiana purchase, still a much smaller territory than the requested Spanish territories (more densely populated).

The Monroe doctrine is from 1823 (when Mexico and the rest of Latin America were independent). Before 1823, the US did not give a dam about European activity in the Americas, Britain seized the Falklands from Argentina and tried and failed to invade Buenos Aires in 1806 and did invade and hold Montevideo for 6 months in 1807. What does the Monroe doctrine have to do with the US invading Tehuantepec in 1810, to induce Spain to cede huge territories to Americans and to gain easy access to the vast Pacific? Anyway, where was the Monroe doctrine when the USN assisted the French navy during a blockade of Mexican Gulf ports, to extract payment due from Mexico, during the pastry war (in order to keep Mexico weak, standing US policy)?

The facts that he US invaded W Florida (while engaged at war with Britain!), although invading troops were difficult to supply and reinforce by sea or land during a war and that it was a casus belli for Spain (risking war on two fronts) and that Spain was so weak that it would not defend useless, unsettled territory and simply ceded them, proves that invading Tehuantepec is a piece of cake in 1810, when the US is not at war and it its army has been trounced and shamed invading Canada against militia, braves and a couple of thousand regulars (which should embolden Spain to fight, rather than cede) it also proves that Spain would have ceded whuge areas in exchange for amrs, munitons and assistance to put down the rebellions and save its mines, populated areas, etc,

Last edited by ruthenium; November 15th, 2017 at 08:50 AM.
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Old November 15th, 2017, 10:17 AM   #10
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Continuing with the thread:

5 months after the US landing in Tehuantepec, the road is advancing rapidly (US troops and Japanese workers have arrive in the Pacific coast to started construction from that end).

Japan's high population density and limited farmland and exports (too many people in relation to cereal, fruit and vegetable production and food imports) had resulted in Japanese eating more fish, seafood, kelp and other algae per capita and its people being harder working than in any other country, just to survive the high cost of living, the cold weather, typhoons and earthquakes. Therefore, Japanese workers turn out to build a road, which can be supplied with fish, etc, from the 2 coasts. Hard working Japanese settlers are also ideal to develop the long coasts of the Americas.

New Spaniards neighboring the occupied territory are thriving, selling water, fruit, fish, seafood, vegetables, horses, vanilla, chewing gum, rubber, tobacco, charcoal, salt, etc, to American troops and workers (even American traders start a profitable trade, eventually buying far more goods than the troops and workers do)) and Japanese workers. Even people from farther areas are arriving to trade or work for in the road and construction of forts, etc,
Japanese workers are slowly trained to fight on weekends by US officers, to help defend from counter attack. As qualified militia, they earn a little more, so they are pleased. Many eventually join the army or navy, as more workers arrive for the road.

New Spaniards south of Tehuantepec realize that the US is bringing unprecendendent prosperity and is much better at building roads, etc, than the New Spain government. They are impressed by the hard working Japanese also.
They also realize that the New Spain army cannot travel across the American, fortified area. Accordingly, they declare independence and request to become a US territory.

When Madison receives the request for US annexation, he immediately summons Spanish diplomats, shows it to them and delivers another ultimatum:

Unless Spain cedes within 2 months the requested territories (in exchange for the 4 million dollars of goods and assistance to put down the rebeliions, including the one in Southern New Spain), the US will immediately annex Southern New Spain and start supplying and assisting the rebels thoughout the Americas. It will also start seizing or sinking Spanish ships and invading the requested territories and others (Lima, Buenos Aires, Cartagena, Havana, etc,).

Madison realizes that the limitng factors for unprecedented American expansion and prosperity in the Pacific, Texas, Uruguay-Paraguay, etc, will be settlers, workers, horses, mules, dunkeys, To transport goods and people across Tehuantepec and in the new territories, to work the farmland, and for the army) cattle, pigs, steel and ships.

Accordingly, he pronounces this address before Congress:
Dear, Honorable Congressmen,
The death of most of the Native Americas from the Hudson Bay and Alaska down to Patagonia, owing to smallpox and other European diseases, war, droughts, locusts, enslavement, etc, has left a huge area to settle and develop.

We have huge resources, but our population density is quite low, given the large territories we acquired in the Ohio Valley and Loouisiana. Accordingly the limiting factors to unprecendented growth and prosperity are:

1) Warships and merchanr ships to transport goods, farm animals and settlers to Texas, Tehuantepec, the Pacific and distant Uruguay-Paraguay (for which New Virginia would be a shorter name). However, even expanding our shipyards and building ships at maximum capacity, we cannot transport millions of settlers, horses, etc, or even hundreds of thousands in a few years. Accordingly, we need to order ships, built abroad to our specifications and under our supervision.

The best candidate is overpopulated Japan, which has few export goods and unlimited, skillful labor force. Accordingly we need to offer Japan to buy all the ships it can build to transport young, healthy Japanese immigrants to the Americas (relieving overcrowding and exceedingly rapid population growth in Japan), in exchange for American goods (grain, machinery, fabrics, etc,) and some cash (ships delivering these American goods will pick up more Japanese immigrants and Japanese products on the way back).

Similarly, we need to make China this offer: We shall buy all the ships China can produce, paying for them with any American products that China needs and silver and gold. The ships will sail for the Americas loaded with healthy, young Chinese immigrants (relieving the overcrowing in the Chinese coast, some immigrants will probably send money back to China, helping its economy).
Japan and China can help us considerably by providing ships and settlers (the second itemn in the list of limiting factors).

2) Setllers and workers to build docks, roads, towns and cities, clar forests and jungles, fish the coasts, transport people and goods by sea and land, etc, Japan and China can provide million of settlers, unfortunately the long distance limits greatly their arrival in Pacific America.
Ireland, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, France, Spain, Austria, Serbia, Greece, Prussia, Sicily, Tuscany, Naples Sardinia, etc, are also overcrowded (although less than Japan) and beset by lack of good jobs. Unfortunately, most Irish and Europeans who want to migrate to America cannot afford the cost of transportation. Accordingly, we must provide funds for them to migrate and deduct the loan slowly form their wages or crops after they settle in America.

to continue
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