Andrew Johnson and the Dominican Republic
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Glenn, James Hogan
"It will be remembered that the Bay of Samana/ /on the eastern tip of Hispaniola/ is one of the finest and most valuable of all the bays in the West Indies. It commands the Mona Passage. It is capacious enough to hold the ships of the whole world; it is free from the hurricanes which are often experienced in the neighboring islands; and it is not easy to estimate its importance to nations interested in the trade of South America and the West Indies." | Samana Bay, then, was the focal point of international rivalry, and mighty were the advantages to the United States of annexing the Dominican Republic. Hispaniola, lying between Puerto Rico and Cuba, controls the Mona Passage, which is dominated by Samana Bay. The bay, approximately eighteen miles wide by thirty miles long, is guarded seaward by the keys of Levantado and Carenero. It is wide enough for ships of deep draft; it is also surrounded by a high ridge "of fairly rugged but not very high mountains" which provides excellent artillery emplacements for harbor defense.
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