For many years the Spanish American War has been referred to as a “Splendid Little War.” John Hay first used the term to describe the war in a letter to his friend Theodore Roosevelt and Teddy, without doubt, fully agreed. Recently Professor Frank Freidel used the same words to title a book concerning that war. Perhaps many of the participants in the Second World War, or the Korean conflict, would also agree that the war with Spain was a comparatively splendid affair as wars go. Imagine a war in which there was no draft, and that was fought largely by regular army troops while nearly 200,000 volunteers remained in camp! A war in which the enlisted men elected the company officers after all the ritual and excitement of a local political campaign certainly offers a picture far from that presented in the 1940’s or the 1950’s. One more thing that makes this war in 1898 attractive to later soldiers is simply the fact that there were very few battle casualties.
"Florida Volunteers in the War with Spain, 1898,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 41:
1, Article 9.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol41/iss1/9