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2020-09-24 00:05:06
George M. Hill Company, Chicago / New York, 1899. Scarce American alphabet picture book on the theme of the Spanish-American War, including "J Stands for Joy / That the Cubans now feel / To be free, and from under / The proud Spaniard's heel" - just as the US began occupying Cuba itself. After decades of revolutionary efforts, Cubans' fight for independence was sucked into an international conflict: when the USS MAINE was bombed in Havana Harbor in 1898, President McKinley (represented under "M" here) declared war on Spain with the stated goal of helping Cuba obtain independence. The US defeated Spain (which also ceded Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippine islands) - and promptly occupied Cuba instead.This alphabet book is a telling window into the period, distilling values for children into simple lettered themes. "U" describes the Spanish-American war as a unifying event for the US, with a full-page illustration of two people shaking hands below an image of troops heading to battle, captioned "Brothers once more - no North, no South." A strain of patriotic imperialism runs throughout, with "P" for Philippines described: "We extend the natives our hand, / And will help them to govern / Their rich fertile land," accompanied by a racist caricature of Filipinos; and "X" stands for "Expansion": "Uncle Sam' will defend / a down-trodden people / In need of a friend." OCLC locates 5 holdings of this scarce ABC, cheerfully introducing children of the Gilded Age into the country's colonialist stance. 9.75'' x 7.25''. Original quarter red cloth, paper pictorial boards. Illustrated w … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Type Punch Matrix [Silver Spring, MD, U.S.A.]
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