Magoon, Charles Edward (1861–1920)

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Magoon, Charles Edward (1861–1920)

Charles Edward Magoon (b. 5 December 1861; d. 14 January 1920), joined the U.S. War Department in 1899, served as governor-general of the Panama Canal Zone in 1905–1906, and was named by President Theodore Roosevelt as provisional governor of Cuba during the U.S. occupation of 1906–1909. His role in Cuba is very controversial. Cuban historians blame Magoon for wasting the monies amassed by the first Cuban president, Tomás Estrada Palma, through granting sinecures and promoting questionable public works, thus establishing the pattern of venality that plagued successive Cuban governments. In actuality, he was not corrupt but inclined to reward a generation of former revolutionary Liberals with posts, which prevented effective enforcement of the civil service law. He was also accused of letting public works contracts to favored U.S. firms. His secretary of justice, General Enoch Crowder, presided over the writing of Cuba's electoral law.

See alsoUnited States-Latin American Relationsxml .


David Lockmiller, Magoon in Cuba: A History of the Second Intervention, 1906–1909 (1969).

Allan R. Millett, The Politics of Intervention: The Military Occupation of Cuba, 1906–1909 (1968).

Additional Bibliography

Mellander, Gustavo A., and Nelly Maldonado Mellander. Charles Edward Magoon, the Panama Years. Rio Pedras, Puerto Rico: Editorial Plaza Mayor, 1999.

                                    Lester D. Langley