Choose Your Friends Wisely: Filibuster William Walker’s Fall From Power

UNCA Author/Contributor (non-UNCA co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Tammy McDaniel (Creator)
University of North Carolina Asheville (UNCA )
Web Site:
Tracey Rizzo

Abstract: In the mid-19th century, spurred on by the ideals of Manifest Destiny, American filibusterers looked to Central America for US expansion. Southern Democrats looking for territories in which to expand slavery funded filibuster campaigns and lobbied for annexation of Caribbean and Central American territories. The most renowned of the filibusters, William Walker, invaded Central America with a small military force to attempt a takeover of the government. He succeeded in becoming the President of Nicaragua, and served from July 12, 1856 to May 1, 1857. The bulk of his financial and material support for this endeavor came from pro-slavery expansionists. Though previously known as an abolitionist, Walker allowed these investors and their money to convince him to legalize slavery in Nicaragua. With this decision he lost the support of the Northern states and the United States Government. This research examines government documents, Walker’s correspondence, and both Northern and Southern US newspaper articles to show how Walker’s acquiescence to Pierre Soule, Jane Cazneau, and other pro-slavery expansionists led to the failure of his mission.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2017
William Walker, central America, 19th century politics, slavery

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