12th August
It was on this day...
1898 Spanish-American War Ends

The origin of the war began in Spanish owned Cuba after news of Spain's apparent brutally repressive regime against the population came to the notice of the US.

The USS Maine was sent to Havana to protect US citizens, following reports of rioting there. It was sunk on 15th February, and few in the USA doubted the Spanish were to blame.

Measures approved in the US Congress gave no doubt that war was on the way. Spain declared war on 24th April 1898, a day after the US Congress asked for 125,000 volunteers to fight. The US declared war on 25th April.

It was a completely one-sided war. The US had occupied Manila by August and the Philippines, aided by local militia who turned their guns on the Spanish, were transferred from Spain to the USA swiftly.

On land, future president Theodore Roosevelt led ground troops, the "Rough Riders", officially named the "First US Voluntary Cavalry".

July 1st: USA won Battle of San Juan Hill.

July 2nd: US troops began a siege of Santiago.

July 3rd: A Spanish fleet, which had just been sent across the Atlantic to fight, was destroyed off Santiago by US ships.

July 17th: The Spanish surrendered Santiago, and thus Cuba, to the USA.

Puerto Rico also quickly fell.

The war was officially ended on 10th December with the Treaty of Paris.

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Birthdays
1931
William Goldman
1881
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1953 The Soviets detonate a massive 400-kiloton hydrogen bomb during tests in Kazakhstan. Known as a "Layer-Cake" bomb.

1981 IBM (International Business Machines Corporation) launches its first personal computer. The operating system (MS-DOS) was written by the then little known company called Microsoft.

1985 524 die when a Japan Air Lines Boeing 747SR crashes into Mount Otsuka, 70 miles northwest of Tokyo.

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