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This project involves the analysis of both primary and secondary sources to investigate what caused men from three towns in Indiana to volunteer to fight in the Spanish-American War, a conflict that they had no personal reason to join. The predominantly-used primary sources were newspapers from the three towns in Indiana and speeches by politicians. These three towns were selected after careful analysis of demographic information including population and number of volunteers in the Spanish-American War from every major city in the state. To further expand on these ideas, political leanings and occupations were taken into account. Upon completing this study, it was discovered that both the rhetoric of pro-imperial politicians, the propaganda that filled the newspapers of the time, and the creation of the concept of glory and the valor that could be won through combat had an effect on the men’s decision to register for a conflict in which the soldiers had no personal stake.
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