Bryan–Chamorro Treaty

The Bryan–Chamorro Treaty was signed between Nicaragua and The United States on August 5, 1914. The Wilson administration changed the treaty by adding a provision similar in language to that of the Platt Amendment, which would have authorized United States military intervention in Nicaragua. The United States Senate opposed the new provision; in response, it was dropped and the treaty was formally ratified on June 19, 1916.

From 1912 to 1925, the United States had amicable relations with the Nicaraguan government because of friendly conservative party presidents Adolfo Diaz, Emiliano Chamorro, and Diego Manuel Chamorro. In exchange for political concessions from the presidents, the United States provided the military strength to ensure the Nicaraguan government internal stability.

The Treaty was named after the principal negotiators: William Jennings Bryan, U. S. Secretary of State; and then General Emiliano Chamorro, representing the Nicaraguan government. By the terms of the treaty, the United States acquired the rights to any canal built in Nicaragua in perpetuity, a renewable 99 year option to establish a naval base in the Gulf of Fonseca and a renewable 99-year lease to the Great and Little Corn Islands in the Caribbean. For those concessions, Nicaragua received three million dollars.

Most of the three million dollars was paid back to foreign creditors by the United States officials in charge of Nicaraguan financial affairs, which allowed the Nicaraguan government to avoid having to pay from its internal revenue the loans it acquired from foreign banks. The debt was amassed by the Nicaraguan government for internal development due to the devastation inflicted from several civil wars waged years prior.

At the request of Nicaragua, the United States under Richard Nixon and Nicaragua under Anastasio Somoza Debayle, held a convention, on July 14, 1970, which officially abolished the treaty and all its provisions.

Intended impact

At various times since the Panama Canal opened in 1914, the Nicaragua route has been reconsidered. Its construction would shorten the water distance between New York and San Francisco by nearly 800 kilometers (500 mi). The Bryan–Chamorro Treaty kept Nicaragua from competing with the Panama Canal.

Unintended impact

The provision of the Bryan–Chamorro Treaty granting rights to United States to build a naval base in the Gulf of Fonseca was contested by El Salvador and Costa Rica. The Central American Court of Justice saw in the favor of the two countries.[1] The United States ignored the decision, contributing significantly to the court's collapse in 1918.


  • Walker, Thomas W. (2003). Nicaragua: Living in the Shadow of the Eagle (4th ed.). Westview Press. ISBN 0-8133-4033-0.
  • Jones, Howard (2001). Crucible of Power: A History of U.S. Foreign Relations Since 1897. Scholarly Resources Inc ISBN 0-8420-2918-4
  1. ^ "El Salvador v. Nicaragua, CACJ, Judgment of 9 March 1917, 11 Am. J. Int'l L. 674 (1917)". Retrieved 2017-06-04.

External links

Adolfo Díaz

Adolfo Díaz Recinos (15 July 1875 in Alajuela, Costa Rica – 29 January 1964 in San José, Costa Rica) was the 12th President of Nicaragua between 9 May 1911 and 1 January 1917 and 18th between 14 November 1926 and 1 January 1929. Born in Costa Rica to Nicaraguan parents in 1875, he worked as a secretary for the La Luz y Los Angeles Mining Company, an American company chartered in Delaware that owned the large gold mines around Siuna in eastern Nicaragua. In this capacity, he helped channel funds to the revolt against Liberal President José Santos Zelaya, who had incurred the anger of the United States by negotiating with Germany and Japan to resurrect the proposed Nicaragua Canal. Díaz became Vice President of Nicaragua in 1910. After he became president in 1911, Díaz was forced to rely on U.S. Marines to put down a Liberal revolt, which resulted in a contingent of Marines remaining in Nicaragua for over a decade. In return, in 1914, he signed the Bryan–Chamorro Treaty, which granted the United States exclusive rights to build an inter-oceanic canal across Nicaragua.

After his term as president ended, Díaz briefly lived in the United States. However, he returned to the presidency in 1926, after a coup by General Emiliano Chamorro (following the withdrawal of the Marines) failed to win U.S. support. During his second term as president, another Liberal revolt occurred. The Liberal forces were on the verge of seizing Managua when the U.S. forced the warring parties to accept a power-sharing agreement, the Espino Negro accord. One Liberal commander, Augusto Sandino, rejected the agreement and waged a guerrilla war against the U.S. Marines, who remained in the country to prop up Díaz's government and enforce the Espino Negro accord. In 1928, after elections supervised by the Marines, Díaz was replaced as president by former Liberal General José Maria Moncada. Afterwards, he acquired control of several of Nicaragua's gold mines, which had been destroyed during raids by Sandino's forces. He unsuccessfully tried to restore mining operations for the La Luz Company, until they sold their holdings to the Nevada-based Tonopah Mining Company.

In 1936, after Anastasio Somoza García seized power, Díaz took up permanent residency in the United States. He lived in the U.S. for more than a decade, primarily in New York City but also in Miami and New Orleans, before moving to Costa Rica, where he died in 1964.

American Commission to Negotiate Peace

The American Commission to Negotiate Peace, successor to The Inquiry, participated in the peace negotiations at the Treaty of Versailles from January 18 to December 9, 1919. Frank Lyon Polk headed the commission in 1919. The peace conference was superseded by the Council of Ambassadors (1920–1931), which was organized to deal with various political questions regarding the implementation of provisions of the Treaty, after the end of World War I. Members of the commission appointed by President Woodrow Wilson included:

Clive Day, an American college professor and writer on economics history at the University of California.

Donald Paige Frary, an American college professor with Yale University, an expert on International Affairs, and author; served as a secretary to Edward M. House.

Edward M. House, a diplomat, politician and presidential foreign policy advisor to President Wilson.

Vance C. McCormick, an American politician and prominent businessman from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Sidney Edward Mezes, an American philosopher and college professor, former president of the City College of New York.

Charles Seymour, an American college professor at Yale University.

William Linn Westermann, then a professor at the University of Wisconsin, who later taught at Cornell and Columbia and became president of the American Historical Association. At the conference, Westermann advised on policy regarding the Near East.

George Louis Beer, colonial historian and Chief of the Colonial Division.

Corn Islands

The Corn Islands (Spanish: Las Islas del Maíz) are two islands about 70 kilometres (43 mi) east of the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, constituting one of 12 municipalities of the South Caribbean Coast Autonomous Region. The official name of the municipality is Corn Island (the English name is officially used in Spanish-speaking Nicaragua).

Emiliano Chamorro Vargas

Emiliano Chamorro Vargas (11 May 1871 – 26 February 1966) was the President of Nicaragua from 1 January 1917 to 1 January 1921 and again from 14 March 1926 to 11 November 1926.He was the son of Salvador Chamorro Oreamuno and wife Gregoria Vargas Báez, paternal grandson of Dionisio Chamorro Alfaro and wife Mercedes Oreamuno ..., grand-nephew of Pedro Joaquín Chamorro Alfaro, 39th President of Nicaragua, and Fernando Chamorro Alfaro and half-grand-nephew of Fruto Chamorro Pérez, 30th and 31st President of Nicaragua.

Chamorro's first foray into politics came in 1893, when he participated in the failed revolution to topple President José Santos Zelaya. When Zelaya was finally removed in a 1909 coup led by Juan José Estrada, Chamorro became Chairman of the Constituent Assembly and leader of the country's Conservative Party.

In reward for his assistance in defeating the revolt against President Adolfo Díaz, Chamorro was appointed Nicaragua's Minister to the United States. In 1914, he negotiated the Bryan-Chamorro Treaty with the United States, by which Nicaragua agreed to allow the construction of a canal across the country, linking the Caribbean with the Pacific Ocean (a canal which has not been constructed).

He returned to Nicaragua in 1916, and was elected president. His Conservative Party received United States assistance in attaining power, and Chamorro later partnered with the U.S. During his term in office he made a concentrated effort to pay off the country's creditors. Running again for office in 1923, he was defeated by Carlos José Solórzano. In 1926, he led a successful coup to overthrow Solórzano, but his new government failed to win American support, faced a civil war, and he eventually resigned in favor of Adolfo Díaz.

In the following years, Chamorro served as Nicaragua's minister to several European states. Originally opposed to the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza García, he eventually reached a compromise in 1950 (The Pact of the Generals[1]), whereby the Conservative Party was granted a number of seats in the Congress. This, however, cost him the support of many radical members of the Conservative Party.

Federal Employees' Compensation Act

The Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA), is a United States federal law, enacted on September 7, 1916. Sponsored by Sen. John W. Kern (D) of Indiana and Rep. Daniel J. McGillicuddy (D) of Maine, it established compensation to federal civil service employees for wages lost due to job-related injuries. This act became the precedent for "disability insurance" across the country and the precursor to broad-coverage health insurance.President Woodrow Wilson signed H.R. 15316 into law on September 7, 1916.The Federal Employees' Compensation Commission was the original administrator of the FECA. However, the Commission did not exist at the time the FECA went into effect and claims accumulated for more than six months while members were selected and sworn into office. The Federal Employees' Compensation Commission officially began its duties on March 14, 1917. The Commission was abolished on May 16, 1946 by President Harry S. Truman as part of the Reorganization Act of 1939. Its duties were transferred to the Federal Security Agency on July 16, 1946.

First inauguration of Woodrow Wilson

The first inauguration of Woodrow Wilson as the 28th President of the United States was held on Tuesday, March 4, 1913, at the east portico of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C.. The inauguration marked the commencement of the first four-year term of Woodrow Wilson as President and of Thomas R. Marshall as Vice President. Chief Justice Edward D. White administered the presidential oath of office to Wilson.

In his inaugural address, Wilson made clear his vision of the United States and its people as an exemplary moral force: "Nowhere else in the world have noble men and women exhibited in more striking forms the beauty and the energy of sympathy and helpfulness and counsel in their efforts to rectify wrong, alleviate suffering, and set the weak in the way of strength and hope". No inaugural balls were held to celebrate the occasion, as Wilson found them inappropriate for the occasion.

Four Minute Men

The Four Minute Men were a group of volunteers authorized by United States President Woodrow Wilson, to give four-minute speeches on topics given to them by the Committee on Public Information (CPI). In 1917-1918, around 7,555,190 speeches were given in 5,200 communities. The topics dealt with the American war effort in the First World War and were presented during the four minutes between reels changing in movie theaters across the country. Also, the speeches were made to be four minutes so that they could be given at town meetings, restaurants, and other places that had an audience. This is an instance of "viral marketing" before its time.

Francis Bowes Sayre Jr.

Francis B. Sayre Jr. (January 17, 1915 – October 3, 2008) was Dean of the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., for 27 years. He was the first grandchild of President Woodrow Wilson.

He was a vocal opponent of segregation, poverty, McCarthyism, and the Vietnam War. In March 1965 he joined Martin Luther King Jr. on the voting-rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. Sayre was unafraid to denounce Senator Joseph McCarthy, Republican from Wisconsin, during the hey-day of the latter's influence in the 1950s. In 1954, Sayre called McCarthy a "pretended patriot", adding "There is a devilish indecision about any society that will permit an impostor like McCarthy to caper out front while the main army stands idly by."

Francis Bowes Sayre Sr.

Francis Bowes Sayre Sr. (April 30, 1885 – March 29, 1972) was a professor at Harvard Law School, High Commissioner of the Philippines, and a son-in-law of President Woodrow Wilson.

Gulf of Fonseca

The Gulf of Fonseca (Spanish: Golfo de Fonseca; pronounced [ˈɡ ðe fon.ˈse.ka]), part of the Pacific Ocean, is a gulf on Central America, bordering El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua.

James Wilson (journalist)

James Wilson (20 February 1787 – 17 October 1850) was a journalist and politician who was the paternal grandfather of US president Woodrow Wilson.

Lake Nicaragua

Lake Nicaragua or Cocibolca or Granada (Spanish: Lago de Nicaragua, Lago Cocibolca, Mar Dulce, Gran Lago, Gran Lago Dulce, or Lago de Granada) is a freshwater lake in Nicaragua. Of tectonic origin and with an area of 8,264 km2 (3,191 sq mi), it is the largest lake in Central America, the 19th largest lake in the world (by area) and the tenth largest in the Americas, slightly smaller than Lake Titicaca. With an elevation of 32.7 metres (107 ft) above sea level, the lake reaches a depth of 26 metres (85 ft). It is intermittently joined by the Tipitapa River to Lake Managua.

The lake drains to the Caribbean Sea via the San Juan River, historically making the lakeside city of Granada an Atlantic port, although Granada (as well as the entire lake) is closer to the Pacific Ocean geographically. The Pacific is near enough to be seen from the mountains of Ometepe (an island in the lake). The lake has a history of Caribbean pirates who assaulted Granada on three occasions. Before construction of the Panama Canal, a stagecoach line owned by Cornelius Vanderbilt's Accessory Transit Company connected the lake with the Pacific across the low hills of the narrow Isthmus of Rivas. Plans were made to take advantage of this route to build an interoceanic canal, the Nicaragua Canal, but the Panama Canal was built instead. In order to quell competition with the Panama Canal, the U.S. secured all rights to a canal along this route in the Bryan-Chamorro Treaty of 1916. However, since this treaty was mutually rescinded by the United States and Nicaragua in 1970, the idea of another canal in Nicaragua still periodically resurfaced, such as the Ecocanal proposal. In 2014, the government of Nicaragua offered a 50-year concession to the Hong Kong Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Co. (HKND) to build a canal across Nicaragua at a cost of US$40 billion, with construction beginning in December 2014 and completing in 2019. Protests against the ecological and social effects of the canal as well as questions about financing have led to doubts about the project.

National War Labor Board (1918–1919)

The National War Labor Board (NWLB) was an agency of the United States government established on April 8, 1918 to mediate labor disputes during World War I.

Nicaragua–United States relations

Nicaragua – United States relations are bilateral relations between Nicaragua and the United States.

Second inauguration of Woodrow Wilson

The second inauguration of Woodrow Wilson as President of the United States was held privately on Sunday, March 4, 1917, and publicly on Monday, March 5, 1917, at the east portico of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C.. The inauguration marked the commencement of the second four-year term of Woodrow Wilson as President and of Thomas R. Marshall as Vice President. Chief Justice Edward D. White administered the presidential oath of office to Wilson.

Sedition Act of 1918

The Sedition Act of 1918 (Pub.L. 65–150, 40 Stat. 553, enacted May 16, 1918) was an Act of the United States Congress that extended the Espionage Act of 1917 to cover a broader range of offenses, notably speech and the expression of opinion that cast the government or the war effort in a negative light or interfered with the sale of government bonds.It forbade the use of "disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language" about the United States government, its flag, or its armed forces or that caused others to view the American government or its institutions with contempt. Those convicted under the act generally received sentences of imprisonment for five to 20 years. The act also allowed the Postmaster General to refuse to deliver mail that met those same standards for punishable speech or opinion. It applied only to times "when the United States is in war." The U.S. was in a declared state of war at the time of passage, the First World War. The law was repealed on December 13, 1920.Though the legislation enacted in 1918 is commonly called the Sedition Act, it was actually a set of amendments to the Espionage Act.

Therefore, many studies of the Espionage Act and the Sedition Act find it difficult to report on the two "acts" separately. For example, one historian reports that "some fifteen hundred prosecutions were carried out under the Espionage and Sedition Acts, resulting in more than a thousand convictions." Court decisions do not use the shorthand term Sedition Act, but the correct legal term for the law, the Espionage Act, whether as originally enacted or as amended in 1918.

Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library

The Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library is the institutional archives of Princeton University and is part of the Princeton University Library's department of rare books and special collections. The Mudd Library houses two major collection areas: the history of Princeton and the history of twentieth century public policy.

The Mudd Library was designed by Hugh Stubbins and cost $2.5 million at the time of its construction. It was the first building to be designed under the University's energy conservation program and was dedicated on October 16, 1976. Its creation was supported by the Seeley G. Mudd Foundation. The Library currently holds 45,000 linear feet of archived material.

Thomas Woodrow Wilson Boyhood Home

The Thomas Woodrow Wilson Boyhood Home is located in Columbia, South Carolina and was one of the childhood homes of the 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson.

United States occupation of Nicaragua

The United States occupation of Nicaragua from 1912 to 1933 was part of the Banana Wars, when the US military intervened in various Latin American countries from 1898 to 1934. The formal occupation began in 1912, even though there were various other assaults by the U.S. in Nicaragua throughout this period. American military interventions in Nicaragua were designed to stop any other nation except the United States of America from building a Nicaraguan Canal.

Nicaragua assumed a quasi-protectorate status under the 1916 Bryan–Chamorro Treaty. President Herbert Hoover (1929–1933) opposed the relationship. Finally in 1933 President Franklin D Roosevelt, invoking his new Good Neighbor policy ended American intervention.


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