Philippine-American War

The Rise of Japan

East Asia 1899.0603

Philippine-American War

The Rise of Japan, the Spanish-American War, and the Boxer Rebellion (3 June 1899)

Historical Map of East Asia & the Western Pacific

Philippine nationalists had helped the United States in its 1898 war with Spain. However, when the Americans won that war, they proceeded to replace the Spanish as the colonial rulers of the Philippines. In response, the nationalists proclaimed a Philippine Republic, fighting an unsuccessful 3-year war for their independence.


Treaty Ports

Treaty ports - the small unlabelled circles on the map - were towns opened to foreign trade by unequal treaties in China, Japan, and Korea. Foreigners operating within treaty ports enjoyed extraterritoriality, being subject to their home country's laws. Unlike concessions such as Hong Kong, these territories were not directly leased by the foreign powers and did not have sizable foreign garrisons.

Only treaty ports that were opened by treaty and used are shown on the maps. Treaty ports are also not generally shown in places which are already covered by concessions or under occupation. Treaty ports are not shown after the 1911 Chinese Revolution, although they continued on into the 1940s.

Yangtze River

By the terms of the Treaty of Tientsin (1858), foreign vessels including warships had the right to free navigation on the Yangtze River. In practical terms, this right extended only as far as Yichang until 1900, when advances in steam navigation allowed access as far inland as Chongqing.

Main Events

Second Samoan Civil War

The Matafaans - German-supported followers of Mata'afa Iosefo - exiled Samoan King Tanumafili from Apia, provoking the United States Navy and the Royal Navy to intervene on his behalf. After retaking Apia in March 1899, the Allies pushed on the Matafaan stronghold of Vailele, but were continuously repulsed. As a result, the Americans, British, and Germans agreed to the partition Samoa at the Tripartite Convention in December 1899.

Annexation of Wake Island

Under orders from US President William McKinley, Commander Edward D. Taussig of the USS Bennington landed on Wake Island and formally took possession of the uninhabited island for the United States. As Wake was well-positioned on the route between Honolulu and Manila, it had been marked as an ideal location for a telegraph cable and/or coaling station.

First Philippine Republic

In accordance with the Malolos Constitution, the first Philippine Republic was proclaimed in Malolos, Philippines, with revolutionary Emilio Aguinaldo as first president. The republic was formed in opposition to the United States, which controlled Manila and had replaced Spain as the colonial power in the Philippines.

Philippine-American War

On 4 February 1899, US troops fired on Filipino soldiers surrounding Manila, starting a war between the United States and the first Philippine Republic. After successive US victories in the field as they seized control of the main centers in the islands, the Philippine revolutionaries turned to guerrilla warfare in November 1899. It was not until 1902 that the US defeated the last major Filipino resistance, with unrest in the south continuing for another decade.

German-Spanish Treaty

The Kingdom of Spain sold its remaining islands in the Pacific Ocean to the German Empire for 25 million pesetas (17 million Marks). As a result, the Germans gained the Northern Mariana Islands, the Caroline Islands, and Palau, which they occupied over the following year.

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