The Edges of Empire and the Limits of Sovereignty: American Guano Islands

@article{Burnett2005TheEO,
  title={The Edges of Empire and the Limits of Sovereignty: American Guano Islands},
  author={Christina Duffy Burnett},
  journal={American Quarterly},
  year={2005},
  volume={57},
  pages={779 - 803}
}
  • C. Burnett
  • Published 10 October 2005
  • History, Law
  • American Quarterly
The origins of the legal framework of U.S. overseas expansion can be traced to a largely forgotten mid-nineteenth campaign to secure a sprinkling of remote oceanic islands for the benefit of American commerce and industry. These "guano islands," which promised American farmers cheap and nearly miraculous fertilizer (in the form of deep deposits of seabird droppings), aroused enormous public passion in an agricultural nation poised to become a global power. Could the United States acquire these… 
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