Forget the C.S.A.- Rivals to the U.S.

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Strategos' Risk, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. Strategos' Risk Oriental Orientalist

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    What other nations could have become powerful enough to be a rival to the U.S. by 1900, or at least a strong secondary power?

    First, OTL's-

    Canada: Ooh boy. They'll need more population and resources. Could the Great North have expanded south more? I know that expansion isn't really a Canadian thing, but...

    Mexico: It's conceivable. They just need to hold together better. I don't think they would expand, but maybe they could have avoided any wars that would lose their northern territories. Though probably California, Utah, and/or Texas were destined to leave. Well, maybe not Texas.

    ATL-

    Texas: I was reading some stuff online about Texan nationalism (which is to say, I briefly skimmed the first few links on a Google search). Interestingly enough, Texan nationalism did exist in the 1800s, and even during the Civil War the Texans were always Texan, never truly "Southern." See this. Mirabeau B. Lamar, second President of the Lone Star Republic, was perhaps the country's greatest advocate for nationalism, envisioning a Texas that stretched to the Pacific, becoming a rival to the U.S. See here.

    Deseret: Not outside of a Victoria game.

    So yeah, any ideas? I like the idea of a Texan counter-republic, but it's probably really implausible.
     
  2. Michael B Doomfarer

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    If the British had sent their convicts there plus occupied places like Chicago (which was originally founded by French traders) they could take over the northern Plains instead of the USA. That would route the trade from that area up the St Lawrence to Quebec etc and on to Great Britain. There would thus be no need for the British to invest so heavily in South America because they could purchase many of the same goods from Canada.
     
  3. Silent Cal Well-Known Member

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    Uber-Mexico! Uber-Mexico! Uber-Mexico! ;)

    Mexican California?! :cool::cool::cool:

    Ambitious Gran Colombia sneaking into the Caribbean? :eek::cool:
     
  4. sunsurf Member

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    Canadians discover gold in Alaska/Yukon ca. 1820 and the gold rush starts. Spanish and Russian explorers participate, settling down in Canadian territory, and the butterfly effect kicks in, so expansion becomes a Canadian characteristic.

    A while ago here I had a map with an uber-Manitoba. Some local Manitoban governor or somebody discovered gold in Alaska ca. 1830 and hurriedly declared independence. And he thought of himself as Manitoban, not Alaskan.

    In 1741-2 Russian sailors were stranded near Sitka; they might have discovered gold, more Russians come for the gold rush and Alaska becomes independent.

    Queen Victoria is never born, Britain suffers some terrible setbacks and plagues in the Napoleonic era, other bad things happen so Britain neglects Canada, so the Scandinavian countries experience a revival of Viking romanticism and move in on their old lands in Vinland/Newfoundland/etc., and start taking over the rest of OTL Canada. Britain fights tooth and nail but is defeated by the combined might of the US, France, Sweden, etc.
    This results in the Unified Kingdom of Vinland and Newfoundland being established in 1875.

    California becomes an empire under Emperor Norton, who is only a figurehead.

    Some religious figure in Hawaii emerges, participates in the California gold rush, some of his disciples participate in the Alaska gold rush, they all get rich and start buying up land all along the coast from Alaska, W. Canada, California and Baja.

    Texas stays independent, and the South is such a troublemaker for the North that the North agrees to let Texas annex the South...? Or maybe that's too unlikely.

    A religious figure emerges in Cuba and encourages the unification of all the Caribbean islands into one united empire.

    Brazil takes over the n. coast of S. America and expands northward into the islands...?

    Uber-Panama takes over the rest of Central America, Mexico collapses in civil war and Panama takes that over too.

    We talk about African kingdoms colonizing S. America before 1500, but is there any way S. Africa could get land in S. America after 1800?

    Okay, I think I've exhausted the possibilities. :)
     
  5. Thande Toujours Phrais

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    Who says they have to be in North America? To be a rival to the US, you need a state in the Americas that is powerful and expansionist enough to grapple for a place as leading power in the Americas. Brazil could qualify, or a Gran Colombia that stays together.
     
  6. Roberto FREE SUSAN O.

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    Well, Iturbide's Mexican Empire could certainly become a major rival to the US if it manages to keep CA (central America, not california) and at least some of the American west (namely California for its gold).

    Gran Colombia and Brazil are viable, too. Outside of the Americas, never forget the European empire and maybe Japan, or a modernized Qing China or Mughal India.

    Going back to the Americas, other options include:

    Uber-Araucania/Patagonia

    British La Plata

    United Federation of Central America

    Walke's Nicaragua

    Independent Louisiana

    Burr's Southwest "empire"

    One of many Indian nations that grow and modernize


    That's about it that I can think of (at the moment). ;)
     
  7. le.Singe is watching you from above...

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    Texas would be totally effing cool, but utterly implausible.

    Mexico, on the other hand... What if Spanish-speaking Mexicans had the sense to settle scenic and fertile California early and rapidly? After all, they did lose both California and Texas mostly because the Anglo population in both territories exceeded the Spanish-speakers. The loss of Texas could cause Mexicans to freak out and embark on a large-scale migration to California, and voilà. All of a sudden the U.S. is denied a Pacific coast (unless they still manage to wrest part of Oregon from the Brits) and Mexico has the power to flourish economically (think of everything you can grow in California, not to mention the GOLD!).

    Even more Earth-shattering would be if this large-scale migration (a sort of Destino Manifesto) happens earlier and involves the settling of Texas as well. Don't know what kind of POD would cause the Mexicans to just decide to get up and go North, though...
     
  8. Ace Venom Well-Known Member

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    Could you imagine if instead of Louisiana being purchased by the US or conquered by the UK, it would have become an independent kingdom? I think that's been done before.
     
  9. le.Singe is watching you from above...

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    Doubtful. Louisiana was sparsely settled and coveted by the US. If the Brits had it, that might be a different story. But, excluding sudden massive French immigration to the area, I can't see an independent Louisiana happening – the US would get their hands on it in the end because, nominally French or not, by 1840 there would be more Anglos in Louisiana than French speakers, and soon there would be talk of annexation.

    But that raises an interesting possibility: what if massive amounts of French citizens suddenly packed their bags and headed for Louisiana? Could a continuation of the paranoid Revolutionary government cause the migration?
     
  10. Dan1988 Thinks he's going off his nut

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    ^Well, that would dilute the Acadian culture in la Louisiane a bit, because now you have a version of French that gets "innovations" from Europe into a dialect that had been separated from mainland France since the beginning of la Nouvelle-France. But hey, a more French-speaking Louisiane - that could be interesting. I wonder if this means some changes in the parish system.
     
  11. Dean_the_Young Uppity Bad Spellar

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    Three problems.

    1. Why move to Louisiana? There was nothing there except New Orleans, which was a backwater. It wasn't even a moneymaker by any stretch except for the minimal west-of-Appalachians trade that went down river, and it wasn't exactly a good place to settle and build farms, what with the indians and swampy conditions and what not. Surely if one wanted to escape, they could either find a place closer to civilization, a colony with better environment/more subdued natives (perhaps in Africa), or a combination thereof.

    2. Why put emphasis on the Western Hemisphere when France was close to shut out? The Caribbean colonies were far more profitable than Louisiana ever could be, and those were slipping away from France. Napoleon decided to cut his losses in a hemisphere he couldn't defend and move his attention elsewhere; what will a sparsely populated Louisiana do to change this social dynamic? A french settlement didn't keep Quebec independent.

    3. How will the young US's geo-strategic needs be changed? Jefferson, an avowed Francophile, was prepared to form a military alliance with Britain, the country favored by his bitter political enemies, to seize New Orleans (which was the entire goal of the Louisiana Purchase in the first place). Perhaps Louisiana can be the American Quebec, but the US is still going to seek uninterruptable access to New Orleans and shipping west of the Appalachians, and short of completely butterflying away the British-French rivalry of whatever Napoleonic Wars equivelent there is, Britain will still likely be glad to simaltaneously give France a knock while making strong ties between the US and Mother Britain.
     
  12. Strategos' Risk Oriental Orientalist

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    Because having a huge rival blob to the big blue blob on the map is more striking if you just look at North America.

    And I'm pretty certain that Brazil never really had expansionist tendencies (too many non-Portuguese speakers?). A surviving Gran Colombia idea merits a whole new thread for itself.
     
  13. Thande Toujours Phrais

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    Well the only real candidates for that are 'some sort of Mexico' and 'some sort of Canada', because none of the other potential states in North America are powerful enough to pose a serious threat to the US.

    How about a scenario where Bolivar or someone manages to keep all the former Spanish America united as one country when it becomes independent? Unwieldy, but if it could get its act together through a highly federal system, perhaps, that would certainly be a serious rival for the US.
     
  14. demonkangaroo Chairman of the Lower Midwest STATEPLAN Committee

    I like that idea. The Iroqouis move to Canada, subjagate the natives, make a new confederacy, modernize, go expansionist, and gain a resiliense to smallpox, and other European diseases, and make themselves a powerful opposing force to the manifest destiney.

    (sorry about the spelling mistakes, I'm on a differant computer that does'nt have Internet Spellcheck)
     
  15. 67th Tigers Banned

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    A shift of the Canadian border around Minnesota south about 60 miles will put the mineral resources that drove US industrialisation in the 1870's + into Canada, and the massive industries of the old Northwest will never develop.

    While this won't crimp US expansion west, the US will remain fairly agrarian, except for New England etc.

    Canada meanwhile will benefit from considerably more industrialisation, and be more attractive to immigrants etc.
     
  16. Superdude Banned

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    So the all the mineral resources in the USA are within 60 miles of the Canadian border in Minnesota.
     
  17. Sgt Detritus Member

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    Republic of New England

    New England seceeds after a War of 1812 in which the Brits kick seven shades of s*** out of the Americans
     
  18. Karlos Member

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    What, nobody believes that Spain could win the 1898 war?
     
  19. Grey Wolf Me?

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    Russia - if it manages to stretch down from Alaska, perhaps create footholds in California etc

    Best Regards
    Grey Wolf
     
  20. 67th Tigers Banned

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    No, just the motherlode which drove US industrialisation (it's the very southern tip of the Canadian Shield):

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron_Range