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The Constitution of EmpireTerritorial Expansion and American Legal History$
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Gary Lawson and Guy Seidman

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780300102314

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300102314.001.0001

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Limits: Conquest and Colonialism

Limits: Conquest and Colonialism

(p.103) 3 Limits: Conquest and Colonialism
The Constitution of Empire

Gary Lawson

Guy Seidman

Yale University Press

This chapter examines the constitutionality of these acquisitions by the United States to create a seemingly overseas empire. In 1854, the United States completed its acquisition of the American mainland by conquering California and the rest of the American Southwest from Mexico, but in the latter part of the nineteenth century, it expanded south to the Caribbean, north to Alaska, and west all the way to the Philippines, thereby significantly extending its borders. The chapter argues that these territories were acquired by virtue of treaty and annexation.

Keywords:   constitutionality, territories, treaty, annexation, nineteenth century, overseas empire

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