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DEMOCRATIC OBSTRUCTION—SILVER.
Every thins has increased in value in this country except the Democratic party.
An event which took place in April, 1865, sent up the value of American property,
American character, and American patriotism to a very high point, and wherever
the ^Republican party has stood from that day to this that character has never
gone down in the scale, and while the Republican party remains in power it
lisver will.

SPEECH
OF

H N C A L S H G OV N R
O . HRE . R S E O ,
OJP

OHIO,

IN THE

H U EO R P E E T TV S
O S
F E R S NAI E,




S a t u r d a y , J u l y 12, 1890.

WASHINGTON.
1890.




SPEECH
OF

HON. C H A R L E S H. GROSVENOR.
The House having under consideration the report ot the committee of con­
ference on the disagreeing votes of the two Houses on the bill (H. R. 5381) di­
recting the purchase of silver bullion and the issue of Treasury notes ihereon,
and for other purposes—

Mr. GROSVENOR, said:
Mr. S p e a k e r : It is greatly to be regretted that at this late day
in the session of Congress my genial and talented friend from Missis­
sippi [Mr. A l l e n ] should abandon, even for the time being, the char­
acter for which he is prominently fitted and should attempt to appear
in a r61ewhich involves the serious consideration of a matter of politics.
[Laughter.] He has made an original point, that is, he has made the
point that was original thirty years ago and has been originated a thou­
sand times since in regard to the bonded indebtedness of the Govern­
ment of the United States. He charges that the bonds of the Govern­
ment have increased in value under Republican administration and
control. If I wanted to be unkind—which I never do— might say to
rl
a great many gentlemen on the other side that they ought to have been
here and in Congress representing their people at the time those bonds
weie authorized to be issued, so that if they were dissatisfied with the
terms of the bonds they might at least have protested in the name of
their constituents against the enactments with which they were not
satisfied. They might have at least exercised the great American right
of protesting against the qualities and provisions that were put into
those bonds.
Mr. ALLEN, of Mississippi. I was not complaining of the bonds,
but of the increased value given to them after they had served their
purpose to the Government.
Mr. GROSVENOR. Everything has increased in value in this coun­
try except the Democratic party. [Laughter.] An event which took
place in April, 1865, sent up the value of American property, Ameri­
can character, and American patriotism to a very high point, and wher­
ever the Republican party has stood from that day to this that char­
acter has never gone down in the scale, and while the Republican party
remains in power it never will.
Mr. PEEL. I would remind the gentleman that according to recent
elections in his own Stat? the Democratic party has advanced there.
[Laughter.]
Mr. GROSVENOR. As I understand it, and from such information
as I have, the reports of the revaluation of the taxable real estate in
my State show that during the last ten years it has fallen off materi­




4
ally. The gentleman must study the figures before he makes a vent­
ure such as he has made. The Democratic administration out there
may be a very good one—I will not discuss that here and now—but it
must raise its money upon a very largely decreased valuation of the
real estate, and that leads me up to the very question I want to speak
about.
Mr. BLAND. I have no doubt you would be glad to see Foraker
elected governor again in order that property might be appreciated.
Mr. GROSVENOR. I would very much rather see Governor For­
aker re-elected governor than any gentleman holding the political opin­
ion of my friend from Missouri.
Mr. BLAND. I have no doubt that is your taste.
IV r. GROSYENOR. It is my taste, and I stand by my taste, and I
J
am sorry for anybody whose political tastes differ from mine on this
point. [Laughter.]
Let me now proceed. What was it that depreciated the values in
the country ? Why, sir, we have been sitting here for nearly eight
months—we are entering upon the eighth month of our session—and
we have had a constant, unceasing, nauseating series of declamations
from the other side of this House that the great depreciation in the val­
ues of the country has- come about from a lack of a sufficient volume
of currency, and they have charged, and it has been a constant repeti­
tion, that the status of the silver currency of the country has had much
to do with this depreciation.
The gentleman from Missouri [Mr. B l a n d ] has filled hundreds of
pages of the C o n g r e s s io n a l R e co rd with constant eternal repeti­
tion, iteration, and reiteration of the statement that it is because we
have not money enough, and have not silver coinage enough, that the
agricultural products of the country have gone down to the low ebb
that we witness to-day. It may be so, Mr. Speaker; the Republican
party is alert to this question, it is wide awake to do its duty in thi3
behalf, but when we come here to deal with a measure, which no mat­
ter how it may be criticised in certain directions, stands admitted by
friend and foe to be a measure which will increase the circulation of
the country something like $60,000,000 per annum of money just as
good as gold, you on the Democratic side of this House vote solidly
against the adoption of this measure and thereby indicate your prefer­
ence to stand by a system which you yourself say has depreciated the
agricultural production of the country and all the values of the coun­
try to the extent which you have so often described.
The Republican party, true to its faithful guardianship of the peo­
ple’s interest, has determined to give to the people of the country a
great increase in the circulation and you resist, you refuse to have it,
you filibuster, you kill time, you weary the patience of men. No
matter what else may be decided by the American people they will
say that the Democratic party has been unwilling to merge partisan­
ship in patriotism in this behalf, and the indictment and arraignment
of the Democratic party on this point will be unanswerable. You have
done nothing to join hands with the Republicans in Congress to pass
any measure of relief to the suffering agriculturists of the country. No
man in this country will deceive the people by any pretense that the
Democratic party is now or ever has been willing to give us free coin­
age of silver. A free-coinage bill would have been passed in this House
if you could have brought the Democratic party to the support of it.
But 22 Democrats voted against free coinage and defeated it.
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5
Bat I want to point out something back of that. Something that
is becoming ancient history but not so ancient as the history that my
friend from Mississippi has been giving us. I go back only four years
to the only Democratic Administration we have had since the war,
and the only one I fondly hope and devoutly pray we may have until
after the next war, which I trust may be postponed one hundred years.
[Laughter.] Your President-elect, Mr. Cleveland, between his elec­
tion in November and his inauguration in March, made known the
status of his Administration upon this silver question. He could not
wait until he had assumed the functions of his office, but he issued a
pronunciaraento from the governor’s office in New York State, warning
the friends of free silver in this country that they must desist from all
agitation on that subject and all promotion of increased silver coinage
or they would put themselves in antagonism to his Administration. It
was a sort of early premonition that there would be an “Allentown
lor every Sowden.”
He wrote a letter to my friend General Warner, my predecessor in
this House, a man of fearless devotion to the interests of free silver
coinage, a man of high character and great learning upon this question,
notifying him and his associates by fair inference that the whole power
of the Democratic administration would be brought to bear to crush
out any attempt to further promote or enlarge the scope and power of
silver in the coinage of the country.
The following is the letter:

A l b a n y , February 24,1885.
G e n t l e m e n : The letter which I have had the honor to receive from you in­
vites, and indeed obliges, me to give expression to some grave and public
necessities, although in advance of the moment when they would become the
object of my official care and partial responsibility. Your solicitude mat my
judgment shall have been carefully and deliberately formed is entirely just,
and I accept the suggestion in the same friendly spirit in which it has been
made. It is also fully justified by the nature of the financial crisis which,
under the operation of the act of Congress of February 28,1878, is now close
at hand. By a compliance with the requirements of that law all the vaults
of the Federal Treasury have been and are heaped full of silver coins whifch
are now worth less than 85 per cent, of the gold dollar prescribed as “ the
unit of value*’ in section 14 of the act of February 12, 1873, and which, with
the silver certificates representing such coin, are receivable for all public dues.
Being thus receivable, while also constantly increasing in quantity at the rate
of $28,000,000 a'year, it has followed of necessity that the flow of gold into the
Treasury has been steadily diminished. Silver and silver certificates havedisplaced and are now displacing gold, and the sum of gold in the Federal Treas­
ury now available for the payment of gold obligations of the United States and
for the redemption of the United States notes, called greenbacks, if not already
encroached upon, is perilously near such encroachment.
These are facts which, as they do not admit of difference of opinion, call for
no argument. They have been forewarned to us in the official reports of every
Secretary of the Treasury from 1878 till now. They are plainly affirmed in the
last December report of the present Secretary of the Treasury to the Speaker
of the present House of Representatives. They appear in the official documents
of this Congress and in the records of the New York clearing-house, of which
the Treasury is a member, and through which the bulk of the receipts and payments of the Federal Government and of the country pass.
These being the facts of our present condition, our danger and our duty to
avert that danger would seem to be plain. I hope that you concur with me
and with the great majority of our fellow-citizens in deeming it most desirable
at the present juncture to maintain and continue in use the mass of our gold
coin as well as the mass of silver already coined. This is possible by a present
suspension of the purchase and coinage of silver. I am not aware that by any
other method it is possible. It is of momentous importance to prevent the two
metals from parting company ; to prevent the increasing displacement of gold
by the increasing coinage of silver; to prevent the disuse of gold in the custom­
houses of the United States in the daily business of the people; to prevent the
ultimate expulsion of gold by silver. Such a financial crisis as these events
would certainly precipitate, were it now to follow upon so long a period of
GRO




6
commercial depression, would involve the people of every city and every State
in the Union in a prolonged and disastrous trouble. The revival of business
enterprises and prosperity so'ardently desired aud apparently so near would be
hopelessly postponed. Gold would be withdrawn to its hoarding places, and
an unprecedented contraction in the actual volume of our currency would
speedily take place. Saddest of all, in every workshop, mill, factory, store,
and on every railroad and farm, the wages of labor, already depressed, would
suffer still further depression by a scaling down of the purchasing power of
every so-called dollar paid into the hand of toil. From these impending calam­
ities it is surely a most patriotic and grateful duty of the representatives of the
people to deliver them.
I am, gentlemen, with sincere respect, your fellow-citizen,
GROVER CLEVELAND.
Hon. A. J. W arner and others,
Members of the Forty-eighth Congress.

With his eyes wide open, with a fall knowledge of the man whom
he was appointing, your President, Mr. Cleveland, appointed a Secre­
tary of the Treasury who demanded of Congress at the start and de­
manded of Congress all along through his administration that it should
repeal the act about which you have boasted, the Bland act, under
which the coinage of silver was going on in this country. Not only
did he insist upon limiting the silver coinage to $2,000,000 per month,
but he sought by every influence he could bring to bear on Congress
to repeal the act and thoroughly destroy silver, for that would have
been an absolute demonetization of silver. It would have been much
more clearly an act of demonetization than was the act about which
our Democratic friends are so continually preaching.
The great crime of 1873, about which so much is being said, was in
no proper or fair sense an act to demonetize silver. We had no silver
coinage; we had no silver dollars in 1873. The coinage had ceased,
had passed out under the greenback provision of the Treasury.
But I want to go still further. After Grover Cleveland had thus defined
his position, and after his administration had thus launched itself and
stood firmly to the end of the four years in that position, he was re­
nominated by acclamation; and the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. W i l l ­
iam s] and other gentleman of the Democratic taith throughout the
country, who are now pharisaically prophesying the benefits of free coin­
age to the country, not only stultified themselves by submitting to his*
nomination, bu t voted for him without qualification; and they stand ready
to do it now, and will be compelled to do it in the long run. In 1888,
after having been in power for four years, you went to St. Louis to tell
the people of the country what you were going to do if you were put
in power for four years more, and the platform was conspicuously si­
lent on this subject. Not only you did not apologize for thf sins of
omission that you had been guilty of, but you did not promise to do
better if yotf were put in power thereafter. [Laughter. ] And you
nominated for President at that convention the very man who struck
with mailed hand at the first outcropping of the friends of free silver,
before, as I said, he had a constitutional right to do so. And yet gen­
tlemen stand here to-day saying they are in favor of free silver and
we on this side are the enemies of silver coinage, or are under the in­
fluence of Wall street.
The measure here presented to the country will give entire satisfac­
tion to the thinking, intelligent business men everywhere. In this
connection I adopt and make part of my speech a portion of an able
editorial which recently appeared in the Standard Union, of Brooklyn,
N. Y. It was written by Murat Halstead, esq., one of the ablest men
wielding the editorial pen in this country to-day, and a gentleman who
GRO




7
from the beginning of this discussion, away back in 1873, has been an
intelligent, educated, clear-headed, and patriotic supporter of the just
and fair coinage of silver. While he is not a crank upon the silver
question, he is a man of undoubted knowledge and attainments thereon.
In speaking of the leading measures with which the Republican party
was charged in the beginning of this Congress, he has the following in
regard to silver coinage:
The third theme that has influential relations is that of the money standards,
the financial adj ustments, the gold and silver and paper questions. In this field
partj< lines have been crossing each other, but there is no considerable doubt
in any fair and informed mind that safety requires Republican supremacy.
There is a faction of the Democratic party, and it centers in New York, that is
sound on money, indeed rather too hard and exclusive for hard money, and
there is a faction of the Republican party exceedingly unsound, committed in­
deed to the vagaries of the Confederate system of finance, which was that of
printing all the money wanted, and reached the point that a bale of Confederate
notes was worth about the same as a bale of cotton, the form of money being
idealized to that extent.
The dangerous raid that the inflationists have recently made upon the Treas­
ury Department has been masked behind a silver question, but there is a happy
solution at hand, and it is the Republican party, of course, that furnishes it.
The Sherman silver compromise, we believe, in spite of all rumors to the con­
trary, will find steadfast support, and, passing both Houses, secure the signa­
ture of the President. It would be incomparably the most important legisla­
tion, not only of this year, but of many years. First, it secures, after a little
while, the stoppage of the forced coinage of the old standard silver dollars. It
stops the purchase of silver for conversion into standard silver ddllars and thus
withdraws a menace which has gradually, though almost insensibly, disturbed
credit and interfered with the progressive and prosperous development of bus­
iness. Second, it protects the silver industry and gives the people of the United
States their rights in silver as a money metal—rights of the utmost interest and
consequence, and that have been vainly and foolishly disparged and denied—
by the purchase of 4,500,000 ounces of sil ver per month, with a limit on the price
that prevents scheming speculators from cornering the Government; and this
silver product is taken at the market price, which means the gold standard—
that the silver is to be measured by gold, not under any arbitrary ratio, but just
according to the markets of the world. The effect is the same precisely as the
addition of the gold price of 4,500,000 ounces of silver each month to the money
of the^country—for Treasury paper is to be issued to the amount of the market
value, the gold valuation of the silver taken—and this paper is as good as gold
because it has behind each dollar of it the amount of silver that a gold dollar
brings. Of course, this paper is as good as gold—it is substantially gold notes.
The addition of four millions at least of these gold notes to the currency
gives assurance that there is not to be contraction, that the people are not to be
plucked through a scanty supply of money, and this will be a stimulus that will
be felt in all channels of trade and in all the vast spaces where there is produc­
tion ; and the Sherman law will not be unhealthy at last, for the limitation oi
the issue is fixed and guarded by gold. We shall not lose gold; we shall gain
it. Not by mighty magic, but through the plain chemistry of equitable legisla­
tion, we shall make gold of our silver. That is exactly what taking it at the
market rate does. These are the incidents that tell of the conditions of pros­
perity—a period of wholesome flourishing by the legitimate use of the bounteous
resources of our wonderful country. He who bets on the growing wealth, the
rising grandeur, the continuing glory of the United States must win. The Re­
publican party will fairly and worthily gather the usufruct of its application of
sound principles. * * *

Mr. Speaker, the Republican party is now, as it always has been,
the friend and defender of the people’s rights. The statement that it
has been guilty of class legislation is a statement unsupported by facts.
It has legislated for the people of the whole country, it is doing so to­
day. Over the barriers of obstruction placed across its pathway by the
Democratic party with column closed up and its flag aloft, it is march­
ing to a victory for its party and a victory for the people. It will
achieve a party triumph in achieving a triumph of the prosperity of
the nation. [Applause.]
GKO




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