| Share
 

Ostend Manifesto

Ostend Manifesto, document drawn up in Oct., 1854, at Ostend, Belgium, by James Buchanan, American minister to Great Britain, John Y. Mason, minister to France, and Pierre Soulé, minister to Spain. William L. Marcy, Secretary of State under President Pierce, instructed Soulé to try to buy Cuba from Spain, but Soulé antagonized the Spanish by his political intrigues and aggressive threats (he issued an unwarranted ultimatum to the Spanish government on the Black Warrior affair). Pierce then ordered a conference of the three diplomats in Europe, all proslavery Democrats, at Ostend. The resulting manifesto strongly suggested that the United States should take Cuba by force if Spain refused to sell. Southerners, who had long feared that Cuba might become an independent black republic, applauded the document, but it was vigorously denounced by the free-soil press as a plot to extend slavery. Marcy immediately repudiated it for the U.S. government.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Ostend Manifesto from Infoplease:

  • Ostend Manifesto: meaning and definitions - Ostend Manifesto: Definition and Pronunciation
  • Ostend' Manifesto - Ostend' Manifesto A declaration made in 1857 by the Ministers of the United States in England, ...
  • John Young Mason - Mason, John Young Mason, John Young, 1799–1859, American statesman, b. Greensville co., Va. ...
  • Pierre Soulé - Soulé, Pierre Soulé, Pierre , 1801–70, American political leader and diplomat, ...
  • Franklin Pierce - Pierce, Franklin Pierce, Franklin, 1804–69, 14th President of the United States ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. History