“A Short History of the Department of State” has been retired and is no longer maintained. For more information, please see the full notice.
The Spanish-American War of 1898 revealed the first cracks in the international balance of power that had governed global relations since 1815. The United States entered the 20th century as an emerging superpower—and adopted new foreign policies and professional diplomatic practices to suit its role. The revitalized Department of State had little time to prepare for the unprecedented challenges that the United States would face during the first European war in 100 years.