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May 1, 1898: Commodore Dewey's Victory in the Philippines

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HeadlineOne of the most significant events of the Spanish-American War occurred on May 1, 1899—the day Commodore Dewey and his Asiatic Squadron defeated the Spanish fleet in Manila Bay. In the years during and after the war, George Dewey became one of the war's most celebrated heroes. Commodore Dewey

George Dewey (1837-1917) was born in Vermont and graduated from the Naval Academy in 1857. During the U.S. Civil War, Dewey served under Admiral Farragut in New Orleans and the Atlantic blockade. After the Civil War, Dewy rose within the Navy to become commander of the Asiatic Squadron in 1897. Appointed by Theodore Roosevelt, Dewey prepared the Asiatic Squadron for future conflict. The Olympia

In addition to Commodore Dewey's flagship U.S.S. Olympia, the Asiatic Squadron was composed of the Baltimore, Raleigh, and Boston. On April 25, 1898, the squadron left Hong Kong and sailed towards the Spanish fleet in Manila. Sailing as a single column into Manila Bay on May 1, Dewey's squadron easily defeated the Spanish and blockaded the bay.


Dyal, Donald H. Historical Dictionary of the Spanish American War. Greenwood Press: Westport, CT, 1996.

O'Toole, G.J.A., The Spanish War: An American Epic-1898. W.W. Norton & Company: New York, 1984.

Spector, Ronald. Admiral of the New Empire. Louisiana State University Press: Baton Rouge,1974.

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