Kearny's Mission to China

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KEARNY'S MISSION TO CHINA. Dispatched to the Far East in 1842 to protect American trading interests in China, Commodore Lawrence Kearny arrived in Canton at the close of the Anglo-Chinese War, generally known as the Opium War. Kearny sent a note to the Chinese high commissioner requesting that American citizens be granted trading rights equal to those of the "most favored" merchants operating in China. The two nations subsequently agreed to Cushing's Treaty, the first U.S. treaty with China, which established the most-favored-nation doctrine as the standard for American trade relations with China. The treaty constituted the genesis of the open-door doctrine proclaimed by Secretary of State John Hay some fifty-seven years later.


Clymer, Kenton J. John Hay: The Gentlemen as Diplomat. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1975.

Holt, Edgar. The Opium Wars in China. Chester Springs, Pa.: Dufour Editions, 1964.

McCormick, Thomas J. China Market: America's Quest for Informal Empire, 1893–1901. Chicago: Quadrangle Books, 1967.

Foster RheaDulles/a. g.

See alsoBoxer Rebellion ; Cushing's Treaty ; Dutch West India Company ; Root Arbitration Treaties ; Trade Agreements ; Trading Companies .

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Kearny's Mission to China

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