Remember Maine Day, Feb. 15
On the night of Feb.15th, 1898, the USS Battleship Maine sank in the harbor at Havana, Cuba. The ship went down in minutes, taking 266 crewmen with her; only 60 survived.
When the Maine was blown up she was on a peaceful mission. President McKinley had sent the Maine to Cuba as a gesture of goodwill toward the Cuban people. Cuba had been a Spanish Colony since 1515. By 1868 the people were tired of Spanish rule and wanted an end to slavery and unfair taxes. In 1868 they began their revolution. Fate would bring the ship and the Cuban revolution together on the night of Feb. 15, 1898.
The Spanish American War came to an end on July 17th, 1898; it lasted about 144 days. Spanish American War Veterans joined together and founded a veterans’ organization. Service to veterans was their purpose, which today is known as the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
At 10 a.m. on Feb. 15 Danbury’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 149 will hold a service and wreath laying at the Memorial located at West and Division Street, Danbury, in memory of those who served on the USS Maine.