Miss Columbia's School House (1894).
Caption: Please, Ma'am, May We Come in?
19th Century iconography frequently represented America as a nurturing woman, skilled in the arts and graces of civilization.
Here Miss Columbia is doing her best with an unruly and polyglot crowd.
Detail: Hawaii with his British designed flag and Miss Canada are outside the gate. Miss Columbia holds a pickaninny prodded by a weapon wielding pupil [five years later the same cartoonist uses the African American figure to depict the Philippine resistance leader, Aguinaldo--who was of Chinese and Tagalog parentage]; in the right corner an Irishman beats up a Chinese man by holding his braid while scuffles break out in the school yard. Rear center features lad with bomb labeled "anarchist" and his chum carrying the flag, "socialism." To left rear center a French half-breed pushes an Indian on a swing whose top hat flies off to reveal his eagle feathers. To Miss Columbia's right, an Asian reclines by the wall with two sombrero'd classmates.
The possible acquisition of part or all of Canada is, of course, a perennial ambition that periodically raises itself in the United States. The British emblem in the Hawaiian flag dates back to the reign of King Kamehameha (1779-1819) under whose native rule the Hawaiian islands were first united. The King had very loosely placed the islands under the "protection" of Great Britain in 1794, partly to offset early American encroachments.
A century later, In 1893 the American community staged a coup. overthrowing Queen Liliuokalani, and offering themselves then to congress for annexation.
The Haiwaian Americans however encountered a temporary set back in the incoming Cleveland administration, which had anti-imperial policies against annexation of new territories. Cleveland withdrew the annexation treaty from the senate. The New York commercial advertiser complained:
IN ORDERING "OLD GLORY" PULLED DOWN AT HONOLULU
PRESIDENT CLEVELAND TURNED BACK THE HANDS ON THE DIAL OF CIVILIZATION. NATIVE RULE, IGNORANT, NAKED, HEATHEN, IS RE-ESTABLISHED; AND THE DREAM OF AN AMERICAN REPUBLIC AT THE CROSS-ROADS OF THE PACIFIC--A DREAM WHICH SEWARD AND MARCY AND BLAINE INDULGED, AND THE FULFILLMENT OF WHICH THE MORE ENLIGHTENED OF OUR 65,000,000 PEOPLE AWAITED WITH GLAD ANTICIPATION, HAS BEEN SHATTERED BY GROVER CLEVELAND, THE BUFFALO LILLIPUTIAN!
Annexation had to wait until the hoopla of the Spanish-American-Cuban-Philppine War---with Dewey's victory in Manila the argument became overpowering that Hawaii must become american territory to support US naval operations and prevent it from falling into the hands of a foreign power, with Japan now advanced as the most fearsome candidate.
a joint resolution of annexation was whooped through both houses on july 7, 1898.
"the jingo bacillus," quoth one congressman, "is indefatiguable in its work."
But President Mckinley had the last word--"annexation is not change--it is consummation."