World History 1823

About the history of the world in 1823, British explorers cross the Sahara, Mexico gains independence, the Monroe Doctrine is established.

TWO CENTURIES OF WORLD HISTORY: 1778-1978

1823

* British explorers Dixon Denham, Hugh Clapperton, and Walter Oudney, on a government expedition to Africa, became the first Europeans to cross the Sahara and see Lake Chad.

* Scottish chemist Charles Macintosh, a fellow of the Royal Society, produced the first practical waterproof cloth by cementing together two layers of fabric with a solution of naphtha and rubber. Raincoats made from this double thickness were called mackintoshes.

Mar. 29 In Mexico, after more than a decade of struggle in which liberal revolutionaries clashed with conservative landowners and upper classes in a constant seesaw, Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, a young army officer, established a republic by toppling turncoat dictator Agustin de Iturbide. Sent by the Spanish viceroy to crush revolutionaries. Iturbide had instead joined forces with them until the Spanish were defeated. After achieving Mexico's independence, he had betrayed the rebels by seizing power himself. Following Napoleon's example, he had proclaimed himself Emperor Agustin I, replacing Spain's harsh conservatism with petty tyranny.

Dec. 2 Incorporating a suggestion made by Secretary of State John Quincy Adams in his address to Congress, Pres. James Monroe announced what later became known as the Monroe Doctrine. He asserted that the Western Hemisphere was not open to further European colonization and that the U.S. would not allow the independence of Western Hemisphere states to be threatened. The immediate motivation for this tough move was Spain's request that Russia, France, Prussia, and Austria aid her in crushing rebellion in New World Spanish colonies. In addition, Russia had claimed control of the Pacific coast from the Bering Straits almost to what has become the Canadian-U.S. border, ordering foreign ships to avoid the area.

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