Until Liberty Enlightens The World: An Alternate America and an Alternate Cold War



We are not here today to bow before the representation of a fierce warlike god, filled with wrath and vengeance, but we joyously contemplate instead our own deity keeping watch and ward before the open gates of America and greater than all that have been celebrated in ancient song. Instead of grasping in her hand thunderbolts of terror and of death, she holds aloft the light which illumines the way to man's enfranchisement. We will not forget that Liberty has here made her home, nor shall her chosen altar be neglected. Willing votaries will constantly keep alive its fires and these shall gleam upon the shores of our sister Republic thence, and joined with answering rays a stream of light shall pierce the darkness of ignorance and man's oppression, until Liberty enlightens the world.
-- Grover Cleveland, Dedication of the Statue of Liberty, 28 October, 1886
 

Hey there!

Welcome to my new timeline/infobox/graphics/media thread, Until Liberty Enlightens The World. This is inspired by threads like the unbelievably wonderful Our Fair Country, by @CosmicAsh and Hail Britannia by @LeinadB93, as well as some others that have come and gone over time. I don't claim to have the graphical skills of those two (or necessarily the relentless eye for detail) but I've been working on this off and on for a while now, and I feel like the time is right to start actually posting stuff here.

You may have seen me posting some wikiboxes, maps, graphics, and so on in the various threads in this subforum recently. None of those are canon for this thread, but they are all first drafts of things in the universe. Like with OFC, I'll be working in medias res. So we'll be jumping into the world of 2020, seeing media and wiki-style articles regarding what's going on in the world, and then mixing in the historical context and explanations. My plan is to put out at least one thing a day - sometimes a big thing, like a wikibox and article, or a piece of media, and sometimes a more straight-forward artifact from the world, but hopefully at least one thing a day, for the foreseeable future. Obviously with this being a presidential election year, there will be some focus on the universe's 2020 election to begin with, but that's only one piece in the puzzle.

The POD for the timeline is that the Murchison letter never comes to public attention (let's say that it gets lost in the mail) and so the incumbent president Grover Cleveland wins the election of 1888, rather than Benjamin Harrison. The thread isn't really about Grover Cleveland, but he's the jumping-off point, and lots of things will be changing from there.

I have lots of ideas for the world outside of the US, but it's much less concrete than the America stuff I have in my spreadsheet of details, so a lot of that stuff is very much a WIP. If you ask me what's happening in Connecticut at the moment, I can pretty much tell you. If you ask me what's happening in Colombia or the Congo, I don't really have anything for you. I'm open to suggestions, ideas, or even contributions from others regarding things happening in the world, but this is not a Shared World, so you can ask me about stuff either publicly or privately if you want to build things up.

On the Sliding Scale of Alternate History Plausibility, I'm going for a II that leans towards III. Real people will still be born even after the POD, unless there is an extremely strong reason why they would not be. There has definitely been some steering and some "rule of cool" in the world-building, but hopefully nothing completely implausible.
 
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The 1888 United States presidential election was the 26th quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 6, 1888. Grover Cleveland, the incumbent liberal conservative president from the Democratic Party, defeated his Republican challenger, business-friendly Senator Benjamin Harrison of Indiana. Cleveland took 204 electoral votes, three more than the 201 required to win. Former Senator Allen Thurman of Ohio was elected Vice President.

It was the only presidential election after 1872 and before 1924 in which the incumbent was re-elected. As of 2020, it is the most recent presidential election in which only two candidates received electoral votes for president.

Cleveland, the first Democratic president since the American Civil War, was unanimously re-nominated at the 1888 Democratic National Convention. He was the first incumbent president to win re-nomination since Ulysses S. Grant was nominated to a second term in 1872. Harrison, the grandson of former President William Henry Harrison, emerged as the Republican nominee on the eighth ballot of the 1888 Republican National Convention. He defeated other prominent party leaders such as Senator John Sherman and former Governor Russell Alger.

Tariff policy was the principal issue in the election, as Cleveland had proposed a dramatic reduction in tariffs, arguing that high tariffs were unfair to consumers. Harrison took the side of industrialists and factory workers who wanted to keep tariffs high. Cleveland's opposition to Civil War pensions and inflated currency
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also made enemies among veterans and farmers. On the other hand, he held a strong hand in the South and border states, and appealed to former Republican Mugwumps.

The election was very close. Cleveland took 48.8% of the vote compared to Harrison's 47.7%, but the election was decided by a margin of only a few thousand votes in Cleveland's home state of New York, which he carried in spite of allegations of wide-spread corruption and electoral fraud. Cleveland became only the second Democratic president to win consecutive terms in office, (along with Andrew Jackson) and only Jim Webb has done so since. Only one state switched sides compared to Cleveland's 1884 victory over James Blaine - Harrison's home state of Indiana.









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Author's Note: The third and fourth paragraphs are as OTL, and are taken from the Wikipedia article on the 1888 election. In OTL, Harrison won New York by 1%, and his home state of Indiana by 0.4%, both "by means of notoriously fraudulent balloting". TTL, the Murchison letter doesn't come to light, and so Cleveland does better amongst Irish voters, and this swings New York into his column. OTL, Harrison won the election 233-168.
 
I've always been a fan of this TL format so I'm excited to see how this progresses! To kick things off, what can you tell us about the ruling dynasties of Europe? Which major countries are monarchies, which are republics, and which are dictatorships?
 
I've always been a fan of this TL format so I'm excited to see how this progresses! To kick things off, what can you tell us about the ruling dynasties of Europe? Which major countries are monarchies, which are republics, and which are dictatorships?
Patience you must have, my young padawan.

I will tell you that Britain is a constitutional monarchy, Spain is a democratic republic, and France is neither.
 
Oh im interested on how this will turned out, what is the is stance on morocco and liberia with the latter still having an american influence and oh im interested how things in asia will turn out (with southeast asia in particular) and will the us acquire the phillipines and make the sulu it's protectorate?
 
Oh this seem interesting i have several question

1.When did the us acquire puerto rico? Does they got into a war earlier on?
2.what happen in uganda?
3.i wonder what is the situation in central and south america
 
I noticed that the U.S. has some involvement in the international rugby scene. And that there is an organization called the NRL. How big is rugby in the United States, if the NRL is actually a national-level rugby organization?
 

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The 1892 United States presidential election was the 27th quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 8, 1892. Incumbent president Grover Cleveland of the Democratic Party declined to run for re-election, citing the precedent that presidents should only serve for two terms in office. The Democrats nominated Cleveland's Secretary of State and chosen successor, Thomas Bayard of Delaware, but he was defeated in the general election by William McKinley, a Republican congressman from Ohio. This was the last election in which a candidate won the majority of the electoral college votes (and so a contingent election in Congress was not required) until 1916, and was the first election in which Dakota and Washington cast electoral votes.

McKinley won the Republican nomination on the first ballot at the 1892 Republican National Convention, beating former Speaker of the House, Secretary of State, and 1884 presidential nominee James Blaine, who would subsequently be re-appointed to the State Department by McKinley. McKinley was best known as a champion of the protective tariff, which he claimed would bring prosperity to American workers. McKinley had promoted a tariff in 1890 which passed through both houses of Congress, but was vetoed by President Cleveland, who opposed high tariffs. McKinley's nomination made protectionism the main issue of the election. Whitelaw Reid, a prominent newspaper publisher from New York, who was often known as "the voice of the Republican Party" was chosen as McKinley's running mate.

The Democ
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ratic National Convention saw three main candidates; the conservative gold-standard supporter Bayard, the moderate Senator David Hill of New York, and the populist Governor Horace Boies of Iowa, an advocate of bimetallism. The backing of Cleveland helped Bayard, who was narrowly able to achieve a majority of delegate votes on the first ballot, as the support of the popular incumbent, and Bayard's long record in the Senate and as Secretary of State, earned him the necessary support, holding off concerns from some in the south and west. Governor Isaac Gray of Indiana, an ex-Republican, was chosen to balance the ticket.

For the first time since 1860, a third candidate took states' electoral votes. James Weaver, a former Congressman from Iowa, who had previously been a Republican, and a member of the unsuccessful Greenback Party, was the nominee of the People's Party, also known as the Populists - an agrarian party that was opposed to big business, and supported bimetallism. Weaver won Colorado, Dakota, and Nevada behind his policy of free coinage of silver. The emergence of the Populists in this election has led some historians to mark this as a transition election away from the Third Party System into the Fourth Party System, or into the Era of No Presidents.

Bayard was able to hold onto the Democratic Solid South, and also picked up Indiana, which had voted for Cleveland in 1888. However, McKinley was able to win the crucial swing state of New York, which did not support Bayard as enthusiastically as it had Cleveland. McKinley was able to hold onto enough western states that his strength in the northeast and midwest gained him 229 electoral votes, four more than the 225 needed to win. Bayard finished with 207 votes, while Weaver won 12. A swing of 1.1% in New York would have given the election to Bayard, while a swing of just 7,000 votes in Kansas would have led to Weaver winning the state, and denying McKinley an electoral college majority.
 
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I noticed that the U.S. has some involvement in the international rugby scene. And that there is an organization called the NRL. How big is rugby in the United States, if the NRL is actually a national-level rugby organization?
An approximate ranking of the popularity of team sports in the United States in 2020 would be:

Baseball
Rugby
Ice hockey
Basketball
Soccer
Texan football
Lacrosse
Cricket
 
An approximate ranking of the popularity of team sports in the United States in 2020 would be:

Baseball
Rugby
Ice hockey
Basketball
Soccer
Texan football
Lacrosse
Cricket
What's Texan football? Is that OTL American football or something completely different. And how did rugby end up as the #2 most popular sport in the country? Are you going to have an update on the NRL to show the number of teams and where they are located?
 
What's Texan football? Is that OTL American football or something completely different. And how did rugby end up as the #2 most popular sport in the country? Are you going to have an update on the NRL to show the number of teams and where they are located?
Texan football is kind of like OTL American football had a baby with Aussie Rules. I will do an NRL/rugby post sometime soon.
 
So here's my guess: ITTL, the reelection of Cleveland in 1888 guarantees Bourbon domination over the Democratic Party, thus blunting the rise of Populism in the Democratic Party?

I'm looking forward to where you are going with this.
 
So here's my guess: ITTL, the reelection of Cleveland in 1888 guarantees Bourbon domination over the Democratic Party, thus blunting the rise of Populism in the Democratic Party?

I'm looking forward to where you are going with this.
Not exactly right, but a good guess.
 
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