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conceived the ambition to be a lawyer; it was in this same court house that I afterward made my first political speech; it was at the fair grounds near here that I delivered my first Fourth of July address. It was to the parental roof, then just outside of the limits of the city, that I brought her who had promised to share life's joys and sorrows with me. All these happy associations rise today before me and leave me no desire to think of other things. I cannot forget Salem, nor can I forget those whose kindly faces smiled upon me here before fortune smiled. I cannot forget the spot near by, the silent city of the dead, where rest the ashes of the father whose upright life has been an inspiration to me and whose counsels lingered in my ears after he was gone-the spot where rest also the ashes of a mother as tender and as true, as patient, as gentle and as kind as God in His infinite love ever gave to man.
It was in this city that I received my first instructions in democracy-I do not use the word in a party sense, but in the broader sense in which democracy recognizes the brotherhood of man. It was here that I learned the truth expressed by the poet, that "Honor and fame from no condition rise." It was here that I learned that clothes do not make the man; that all who contribute to the nation's greatness and have the good of the country at heart— no matter what their position in life, their ancestry or their surroundings-stand upon a common ground and share in a common citizenship. It was here, too, that I was taught to believe in freedom of conscience-that principle which must go hand in hand with a broad democracy; that every man has a right to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience, and that no government like ours can dictate how a man shall serve his God.
There is an ideal plane in politics, and I believe we stand upon it here today. We differ in opinion and we differ in party politics, but we meet today recognizing these differences and yet each charitable toward the other. We are all imbued with the same spirit; we all possess the same ambition; we are all endeavoring to carry out the same great purpose. We all want a government of the people, by the people and for the people. However we may differ as to the means of securing that kind of government, we can differ as honest citizens—apart in judgment but together in purpose. I thank the Republicans who have assembled here; I thank the Populists; and I thank the Prohibitionists as well as the Democrats, because while we dispute about the questions which rise to the surface from time to time and agitate the people, we all agree in those great fundamental principles which underlie our form of government. We believe that all men are created equal-not that they are equal in talents or in virtue or in merits, but that wherever the government comes into contact with the citizen, all must stand equal before the law. We agree in the belief that the government should be no respecter of persons— that its strength must be used for the protection of the fortunes of the great and the possessions of the poor, and that it must stand as an impartial arbiter between citizens. We agree in the belief that there are certain inalienable rights -rights which government did not give, rights which government should not take away. We agree in the belief that governments are instituted among men to secure and to preserve these rights, and that they derive their just powers from the consent of the government. We know no divine right of kings; the people are the sovereign source of all power. These citizens are
the substantial foundation upon which our form of government rests. While our citizens appreciate the responsibilities of citizenship, and strive, each in his own way and according to his best judgment, to bring civilization to higher ground and to make the Government each year a more fit expression of the virtue and integrity of the people, differences on minor issues need not disturb them.
I have mentioned the basic principles upon which has been reared this, the greatest nation known to history. I am a believer in the progress of the race. Talk not to me about crises through which we cannot pass; tell me not of dangers that will overthrow us, or of obstacles too great to overcome; we know none such. A brave, a heroic, a patriotic people will be prepared to meet every emergency as it arises. Each generation is capable of self-government, and I believe that under our institutions each generation will be more capable than the generation which went before. Abraham Lincoln, in the greatest of his speeches, said that we had an unfinished work to perform. Every generation receives from the preceding generation an unfinished work. The works of man are imperfect. Mankind labors on from age to age but does not reach perfection. Every generation enjoys the blessings bequeathed from the generations past, and we should strive to leave the world better than it was when we entered it. To such as are gathered here and throughout the land a nation can look with absolute confidence for the wisdom, intelligence, patriotism and courage which are necessary in every hour of danger.
But I must not talk longer. Permit me to thank you again and again for the words which you have spoken and for the kindly expression which I see on every face. We know not what may be the result of this campaign; we go forth to do our duty as we see it, but what the verdict will be we cannot know until the votes are counted. No matter whether the campaign results in my election or defeat, it cannot rob me of the delightful recollection of the confidence and love of the citizens of my boyhood home.
At another meeting in the evening I spoke for a few minutes, concluding:
If there is one lesson taught by six thousand years of history it is that truth is omnipotent and will at last prevail. You may impede its progress, you may delay its triumph; but after awhile it will show its irresistible power, and those who stand in its way will be crushed beneath it. You ask me if these reforms which we advocate will be accomplished. I say that if they are right they will be accomplished. We who believe that they are right can only do our best and give such impetus to them as we are able to give, and then trust to the righteousness of our cause to prevail over those who oppose us.
At an early hour on Thursday morning we took the train for St. Louis, arriving there in time for breakfast. From St. Louis we went to Kansas City. Mr. Bland was upon this train and was the first to greet us when we entered the car. This was the first time that I had seen him since the Chicago Convention, and I was impressed by his cordiality. He traveled with us as far as Jefferson City, acting as master of ceremonies at the receptions along the way.
At the last mentioned place a large number had assembled at the depot. In introducing me, Mr. Bland said:
I served with Mr. Bryan four years in the House of Representatives, and know him thoroughly. I know his heart is with the people in this fight and I repeat now, what I have said on other occasions today, that if I had been the one to select the leader in this great contest, I would have selected my friend, the Hon. William J. Bryan.
This meeting gave me an opportunity to speak a word in behalf of Mr. Bland, who had announced himself as a candidate for Congress. I said:
Jefferson City Speech.
I have just been wondering whether I could find in all this country a combination of circumstances which would make a speech so pleasant. I am in a city named for the greatest Democrat who ever lived, Thomas Jefferson; in the Congressional District of one of the most gallant leaders that the Democracy has ever known, Richard P. Bland; in a State presided over by one of the most courageous defenders of the interests of the common people that any State ever had, Governor William J. Stone, and, to leave nothing more to be desired, I am in a city whose Mayor is named Silver. Now can you think of any combination that beats that? Thomas Jefferson, Dick Bland, Bill Stone and Mayor Silver I feel at home here.
My friends, I am glad to learn that there is no opposition in the Democratic party to the nomination of Mr. Bland for Congress. We need him there, and if it is not to be his privilege to sign a bill which will restore silver to its ancient place by the side of gold, it may be his higher honor to introduce and give his name to a bill which, when it becomes a law, will open the mints of the United States to the free and unlimited coinage of gold and silver at the present legal ratio of 16 to I.
Before reaching Kansas City we were met by a reception committee, and upon arrival were escorted to the Coates House. After a very pleasant dinner with some of the prominent advocates of bimetallism, the evening was occupied with a short speech to the people who had assembled in front of the hotel and a reception in the corridors of the hotel. Leaving the next morning, we found an enthusiastic throng at St. Joseph and similar gatherings along the line.
We entered Nebraska at Rulo, a little village situated in the southeast corner of the State. As the train left the bridge, a salute was fired by the Rulo Gun Club, and this gave one of the eastern newspaper correspondents an opportunity to inquire whether it was a reception or a holdup. The entire population seemed to be out; the depot was decorated and the town was in holiday attire. This reception was especially gratifying because we were now among the constituents to whose generous confidence I am indebted for two terms
of Congressional life. At Falls City and Tecumseh still larger numbers had gathered. At Table Rock we were met by a reception committee from Lincoln. This committee was composed of men and women of all parties. Although the weather was threatening, the people of Lincoln were present at the depot to welcome us, and from the train to our home the noise was deafening. The day's demonstration was concluded with a parade, a speech from the balcony of the capitol and a reception within. As the mayor and many prominent Republicans took part in this reception, I was careful to avoid political issues. I said in part:
I am proud tonight to be able to say of those who are assembled here: These are our neighbors. I beg to express to Republicans, Democrats, Populists, Prohibitionists to all of all parties, the gratitude which we feel for this magnificent demonstration. I say we, because she who has shared my struggles deserves her full share of all the honors that may come to me.
This scene tonight recalls the day, nine years ago this month, when, by accident, rather than design, I first set foot within the limits of the city of Lincoln. I remember the day because I fell in love with the city, and then resolved to make it my future home. I came among you as a stranger in a strange land, and no people have ever treated a stranger more kindly than you have treated me. I desire to express tonight our grateful appreciation of all the kindness that you have shown us, and to give you the assurance that if, by the suffrages of my countrymen, I am called to occupy, for a short space of time, the most honorable place in the gift of the people, I shall return to you. This shall be my home, and when earthly honors have passed away I shall mingle my ashes with the dust of our beloved State. This is no political gathering. I see here the faces of those who do not stand with me on the issues of the day; but I am glad that love can leap across party lines and bind in holy friendship those whose judgments dwell apart.
I thank the Mayor of this city for the charity which he has shown today. I thank those of all parties who are willing for a moment to forget political differences and join in celebrating the fact that at last a Presidential nomination has crossed the Missouri river.
Mileage on First Trip.
From Chicago to Odin, Ill., over Illinois Central Ry...
.240 miles 6
From Salem to St. Louis, Mo., over B. & O. S. W. Ry..... 70
Total number miles traveled first trip.
THE SILVER PARTY CONVENTION.
N July 22, 1896, the National Silver Party Convention met at St. Louis in pursuance of the call issued by the Bimetallic Union. Hon. Francis G. Newlands, of Nevada, was chosen temporary chairman. Mr. Newlands has for many years been an active champion of bimetallism and has delivered several very strong speeches in support of the doctrine. Upon taking the chair he said:
Mr. Newland's Speech.
Gentlemen of the Convention: In January last a conference of the leading bimetallists of the country was held at Washington. The expectation at that time was that both the Democratic and Republican parties would, at the coming national conventions, either declare for the gold standard, or would seek to deceive the voters by evasive platforms, and anticipating this the purpose of the conference was to inaugurate a new political movement for the unification of the silver forces of the country regardless of former political affiliations. A national convention was called, and as the result of the organization which has since taken place in almost all the States of the Union, the National Silver party meets today to determine what course will best advance the cause which we have at heart.
The conventions of the old parties have been held, and have made public declaration of their principles. The Republican party has declared for the gold standard. Practically this means gold monometallism, the system of finance inaugurated by Harrison and continued by Cleveland. Silver is denied its time-honored use as redemption money, and has become simply the material upon which is stamped a good promise, and so our greenbacks, our Treasury notes and silver certificates, instead of being money, have been turned into a gold debt, and the primary money of the country is confined to the limited amount of gold approximating $500,000,000, which an adverse balance of trade is constantly depleting with all the attendant evils of continuing bond issues.
The Democratic party has declared for the free and unlimited coinage of silver at the ratio of 16 to I without waiting for international action. Whilst it has made other declarations in its platform, it has announced that the silver question is the paramount issue of the day, and that to it all other questions are to be subordinated. It has nominated a candidate of unimpeachable character, of exalted ability, of inflexible integrity, of high purpose, who has never faltered for a moment in his devotion to the cause of bimetallism. Firm, but not headstrong; confident, but not self-sufficient; near to the people, but not demagogic; determined for reform, yet without a single incendiary speech or private utterance to mar his record; possessing a happy combination of the oratorical