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President Joseph Smith was a staunch abolitionist and expansionist. He believed that as all men were created equal, and that slaves should be freed by 1850. He is the first president since George Washington to be elected without affiliation with a major political party. He annexed all of Oregon, as well as Texas. In addition, he began the Mexican-American War and, with a great U.S. victory after only 8 months, he annexed all of Mexico. Furthermore, he then annexed Canada, provoking the Third British War, which lasted for 3 years, and ended with the U.S. gaining all of Canada, as well as all British islands off the coast of North and South America. He then began a crusade to conquer or peacefully annex all of South America, which he began by conquering Colombia. He then secured further territories, such as Venezuela and Brazil, much to the anger of Spain. He then organized raids where the capital cities of many major Spanish territories in South America, which were ransacked and captured by the US military. He provoked all-out war with Spain by doing so, and within 2 years (while simultaneously fighting the British), however, the Spanish military had crumbled and eventually in the Treaty of Paris, Spain relinquished all their territories in the Americas, as well as those off the coast, including the Philippines, Cuba, and Guam. The last year of President Smith's first term saw much industrial and military expansion, as well as settlement in the newly-acquired territories. There was little resistance from any of the conquered or annexed lands, and after the conclusion of the Third British War many South American nations requested annexation into the US.