Date of Award

2017

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in History

Department

History

First Advisor

Rod Mather

Abstract

This thesis will center upon the level of involvement Americans had in the Greek War of Independence from 1821-1829 despite remaining neutral during the conflict. Primarily focusing on the contributions of individuals and organizations, the thesis will discuss the political actions that occurred to support the Greeks, and how different American citizens contributed to the conflict. In addition, the text will explore why the United States did not formally give support to the war despite the philhellenism of prominent political figures, such as Thomas Jefferson and Daniel Webster. Groups and individuals in the Boston area had competing interests that both helped and hindered aid to the Greek cause. Trade interests with China and Turkey motivated Bostonian elites to press Congress to stay out of the conflict. These same forces, however, along with political likening to the cause, fueled individual efforts that provided private American aid to the Greek Independence Movement.

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