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Spanish-American War: Topics in Chronicling America

A guide for researching the topic of the "Spanish-American War," which took place from April 25 until December 10,1898, in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.


War breaks out between United States and Spanish Forces after the U.S. Congress declares war upon Spain on April 25, 1898. April 29, 1898, The San Francisco Call (San Francisco, California), Image 1. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers.

The USS Maine explodes and sinks in Havana Harbor on Feb. 15, 1898, killing 266 American sailors. Pressured by the "yellow press," the U.S. declares war on Spain on April 25, 1898, resulting in the deaths of thousands and the collapse of the Spanish empire. Read more about it!

The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.

The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.


April 25, 1898 The U.S. Congress declares war on Spain.
May 1, 1898 First major battle between Spanish and U.S. Forces:
U.S. Commodore Dewey and his Asiatic squadron defeat the Spanish fleet at Manila Bay in the Philippines.
June 22, 1898 U.S. troops land in Cuba.
July 1, 1898 U.S. forces defeat the Spanish at the Battle of San Juan Heights.
July 3, 1898 U.S. forces destroy the Spanish Fleet off Santiago Bay, Cuba.
July 17, 1898 The Spanish surrender at Santiago.
August 12, 1898 The U.S. and Spain sign the Protocol of Peace, ending hostilities between the two countries.
December 10, 1898 The Treaty of Paris is signed by representatives from the U.S. and Spain, ending the Spanish-American War.
February 6, 1899 The Treaty of Paris is ratified by the U.S. Senate.
Under the treaty, the U.S. acquires control over Cuba, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippines.