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M O K G A N .

The Senate having under consideration the bill (H. R. 1) to repeal a part of
an act, approved July 14,1890, entitled "An act directing the purchase of silver
bullion and the issue of Treasury notes thereon, and for other purposes"—

Mr. MORGAN said:
Mr. PRESIDENT, I have come to the Senate to-day, contrary
to the advice of my physician, for the purpose of expressing in
thefinalstages of this bill some opinions which I have formed
about it after the best deliberation I have been able to bestow
upon the subject.
The situation with which we are confronted in the Senate today seems to me to be a very lamentable one, one of which lean
sp 3ak only with pain, and which I can contemplate only with
serious apprehensions for the future welfare of our country.
I do not claim, Mr. President, higher patriotism than any
other gentleman on thisfloorwho differs with me or agrees with
me in sentiment; nor do I claim greater wisdom or greater experience than any, even the most humble and unpretending of
the members of this body; but I have my convictions upon this
subject, particularly as to what is best and wisest and safest to
be done for the constituency I represent here; and I desire to
give expression to some of those convictions on this occasion. I
trust in doing so that I shall not be considered as trying to procrastinate even for a moment thefinalcalamity, as I consider it,
which is about to fall upon the country in the passage of the
pending bill.
The people of the country are prepared for almost anything.
They have been worried,and provoked,and depressed, and kicked,
and cuffed about by the monetary power in this land in such a
way as that they find at last that their dependence upon it is such
that their material and smallest domestic interests are controlled
entirely by the power of those who occupy the high places in
the land, and who have been placed in that ascendency simply
by Congressional legislation.
The people of the United States are not born some princes
and some subjects; they are born equals, and they are supposed
to have equal rights in all of the beneficent heritage we have
derived from the wisdom of our fathers, than whom no fathers
were wiser or better. They were born to the equal enjoyment
of all these privileges, and when the country was first launched
upon the experimental idea of self-governing sovereign power
residing in the people and in the States there was but very little



of that apparent disparity which now exists between the classes
of society in this country. There were not many colossal fortunes
existing in the land; there were some which by way of comparison were very large, but they were not colossai in the sense that
they are now, and they had not been derived through speculation and peculation, and the handling of the powers of the Government of the United States to the disadvantage of their
neighbors and to their own aggrandizement, but they had been
built up by the sober and earnest labors of honest men devoted
to honest pursuits in an honest way.
W e have passed that era and have come into an era in which
the most extravagant conceptions and wishes of the human mind
in respect of the aggrandizement of wealth have been realized;
and we find ourselves beset now by classes in the United States
who seem to demand for themselves the power to control everyone else in all his industrial labors, opportunities, and hopes in
respect of everything that concerns human existence.
This class in the United States owes its origin, owes its present existence, owes its present power and its future prospects entirely to the legislation of Congress. The States have not done
this; the people have not done it; it has been the outgrowth of
legislation, which might sometimes be characterized as being
corrupt, oftentimes corrupt, and certainly in the line of that
human endeavor which always grasps power whenever it is
brought within the reach of the mortal hand.
This is the situation with which we are confronted to-day, and
the labors of this body for the last ninety days have been devoted to an investigation of the measures, on the one side for
relief from this situation, and on the other side, for the increase
of the powers of this class of people. The line is a broad and
distinct one. There is no human being who is capable of reasoning, who has the responsibilities of manhood in this great republic of ours, who does not recognize the fact that the party
divisions or the actual divisions, whether partisan or not, which
exist amongst the people of the United States, all exist upon this
line, one class standing on one side of it and the other class standing on the other side.
The class who claim Congressional power for the purposes of
personal aggrandizement and increase of wealth is in a vast
minority when considered numerically. The class against whom
the levies and assessments and contributions to be voted to this
minority class are demanded, form a vast unorganized mass of
industrial people, engaged in a great variety of pursuits, chiefly
agricultural, who by reason of their situation are incapable of
perfect organization, and are therefore not capable of resisting
the movements which are made by this minority class against
their interests and against their rights. The feeling of brotherhood and benevolence which characterized the people of the
United States in the earlier days of the republic has departed,
and it is now the purpose, it seems, of Congressional legislation
that the one class shall make out of the other class all that they
can realize, everything that can be done through the powers of
taxation, the powers of discrimination, and whatever powers can
be exercised in a legislative sense by the Congress of the United

Well, perhaps unfortunately for me personally, I am thrown
with this majority class; my sympathies are with this vast mass
of people; my heart is with them; my convictions that they are
entitled to the protection of every feature of the Constitution
of the United States are keen and sensitive; and therefore, Mr.
President, I am ready to defend them according to the best of
my ability whenever and wherever I can.
This long debate has reached its final stage and seems to have
included almost every phase of financial inquiry, and our opinions, expressed in our votes, are ready to be placed upon the
Journal of the Senate.
In the earlier stages of the debate, after this bill had come
Over from the other House, I was deeply impressed with the conviction that the immense sweep of the questions involved in our
mixed, incongruous, and dislocated financial system would lead
us into world-wide fields of discussion; not without profit, but
without any practical and permanent results for the relief of the
country. I attempted to relieve this situation and only succeeded in causing some severe opposition and even severer criticism of myself personally.
These fears have been fully realized in so far as any vote we
are to give on this measure is concerned. There is nothing in
this bill except the death warrant of silver as a money metal,
and only its final execution will follow. A fatal blow to silver
was delivered in the first Sherman bill of 1873, and lingering it
has lived, until now it is doomed to sudden death by the third
Sherman bill, which amends, re enacts, and adopts the second
Sherman bill of 1890, and it is masquerading as a Democratic
measure. Instead of curing thefinanceswe seem to have caught
a new disease, and a loathsome one, if our platform is true. I confess that this last sad phase of legislative hostility to silver as a
money metal, sustained by a minority of Democrats and a majority of Republicans in the Senate, has nearly cast out hope for
the relief of the industrial classes, and has filled me with sorrow
and chagrin.
To my understanding, it is the complete overthrow of Democratic principles and pledges, and is an irrevocable surrender of
the whole attitude of the Democratic party to the demands of a
tyrannical, corrupt, insolent, and overbearing combination of
those corporations and men who measure out money to the people at will for the sole purpose of increasing their gains by the
alternate expansion and contraction of the currency.
The first Sherman law of 1873, which destroyed silver as legaltender money and deprived it of coinage into standard dollars,
failed to encounter the veto of President Grant only because he
did not discover thefineartifice employed in the demonetization
of that metal. Whether or not its passage through Congress
was stealthy, it certainly escaped the knowledge of Gen. Grant.
Had he known what was being done there is no doubt that his
veto would have arrested it.
True, the hope of resurrection is vaguely held out to the silver men, but we prefer not to die in order to test the resurrectionary powers of the Senator from Indiana. The doctor who
presided at the deathbed of Lazarus was not expected to do
much towards his resurrection. Besides, the Senator from Ohio

will not consent that Lazarus shall come forth; nor is it certain
that his resurrection will not be vetoed by the President.
But there is no need to resort to illustration. It is intended
by this bill to destroy silver in order to make room for paper
currency based on gold, and, to support that currency, the people are to be taxed to provide gold by the sale of bonds to fortify the reserve in the Treasury.
On Saturday the Senator from Ohio [Mr. SHERMAN] informed
us that, in his opinion, this measure will not meet the exigency
of the financial situation.
I will read from the RECORD what the Senator said:
Mr. SHERMAN. NOW, Mr. President, the passage of some such provision
is undoubtedly necessary, and I trust that the Senators on the other side of
the Chamber who have the control necessarily, who have the majority, will
make some such provision as this. I feel at liberty to call their attention to
the subject, because I consider it vital. I fear very much that after a little
while, as to the results of the measure that we are about to accomplish, the
suspension of the purchasing clause of the act of 1890, the people will find
out that it has not been the germ and root of the evil under which they are
suffering, and they will look to us for having provided an inefficient measure, a measure that will not meet the exigency.

After three months of debate, in which this Senate Chamber
has resounded from day to day with the declaration that the
purchasing clause of the Sherman act was the cause of the collapse and the paralysis in the financial condition of the people
of the United States, the honorable Senator from Ohio rises in
his place and contradicts the whole of it, and disproves the whole
of it by his statement which shows that we have bsen following
a phantasmagoria; that we have been following a false pretense,
which has been set up by the monetary and financial establishments of this country in order to alarm the people into distrust
and servitude.
I fear very much that after a little while, as to the results of the measure
that we are about to accomplish, the suspension of the purchasing clause of
the act of 1890—

He calls that a suspension which is an absolute repeal—

the suspension of the purchasing clause of the act of 1890, people will find
out that it has not been the germ and root of the evil under which they are
suffering, and they will look to us for having provided an inefficient measure,
a measure that will not meet the exigency.

If that was not the germ and root of the evil under which we
are suffering, let some Senator rise here and point out what was.
There you have reversed the public judgment; there you have
taken the bandage off of the public eyes that have been so long
in darkness and trepidation, and you have disclosed to the people of the country the fact that they have been in error in their
frantic desire to get away from the purchasing clause of the
Sherman law.
What, then, has caused the trouble? What has been the germ
and root of this evil, the root of bitterness we are trying to extract from the public situation in order that relief may come to
our afflicted country? It is nowhere else, Mr. President, nowhere else than in this false clamor gotten up by the banking
institutions in the United States and in England and in Germany for the purpose of alarming the people until they could
repe'il the one law for the purchase of silver by the United
States which the Senator from Ohio says has not been the cause
of the evil.

Here we have, Mr. President, the third lesson of the programme.
The first is the final demonetization of the silver that is not
already owned by the Government or in circulation, the silver
that lies in the rocks and the mountains of the West.
The second is the increase of the power of the national banks
to issue their notes to the amount of 10 per cent on the bonds
that they may hold. That has already been brought forward.
It was debated in the Senate and was abandoned for a reason that
I never understood until I had the opportunity to read the RECORD
of Saturday's proceedings.
I now see it as plain as light. They knew they could not pass
it then, but they know now that after this bill passes they can
pass it. They know that the weight and power given to the attitude of the national banks by the passage of this bill on their
false demand will place them in such a high position of authority amongst the people of the United States as that the Senator
from Indiana will have nothing else to do but to move his bill,
which he has had already partially debated, to add 10 per cent
to the issues of the national banks, and have the people pay the
interest upon that in order that they may have money to buy
their bread and meat.
The third stage is the sale of gold bonds to the sum of $200,000,000 to fortify the Treasury against gold raiders. This last
proposition called out the Senator from Maryland [Mr. GORMAN], and he poured afloodof light on several matters that have
given the country much concern and alarm recently. I will notice two or three of these matters:
First, the Senator shows that this bill is not what is demanded
by the Chicago Democratic platform.
Second, that it is the fruit of a coalition and was dictated to
the Senate by the Senator from Ohio. It is in fact the third
Sherman bill.
Third, that the consideration of the bill has been delayed by
the friends of the bill, and not by its enemies; and
Fourth, that the Republicans in the Senate broke up the compromise to which all the Democrats had agreed except five, I believe, and which was understood at the time to be agreeable to
the President.
I will read from the RECORD what the Senator from Maryland
[Mr. GORMAN] said in his debate with the Senator from* Ohio
[Mr. SHERMAN] on these points, and I will read literally, Mr.
President, because this debate between those Senators is to be
immortal. This debate is the key that unlocks the situation.
This debate is the last revelation which we have received from
an honest, a candid, and a manly source of the sincere truth of
the situation, and I thank him; I bow my thanks to the Senator
from Maryland that he has had the manhood to come out before the world and to state in the debate with the Senator from
Ohio exactly what is the situation to-day in the Senate of the
United States upon this very important, yes, this vital measure.
The Senator from Maryland said:
Mr. President, I have not detained the Senate many moments in the discussion of the pending question. I have studiously refrained from doing so.
But I can not help observing the very remarkable attitude of the dis687


tinguished Senator from Ohio, who is the acknowledged leader on the other
side of this Chamber, and of more than half the Senators who support the
bill for the repeal of the purchasing clause of the so-called Sherman law.

The army corps of the Senator from Ohio is the largest one
that is attacking it.
His anxiety for its repeal, his support of its repeal, is perfectly well understood; but at the same time that distinguished Senator has well known
the fact that the passage of the pending bill was impossible at any time except as a nonpartisan measure, except by the support of the twenty-five or
twenty-six Republicans on the other side of the Chamber and the twentyone or twenty-two Democrats on this.
Its only hope of success from the beginning until now has been unity of
action between gentlemen who have such diverse views upon general political questions, and not to bring in the mere party question and attempt to
take party advantage of the delays, of the mistakes, if there have been mistakes; and now, in the closing hours of the struggle, which will go down in
history as one of the most remarkable that has ever taken place in this
Chamber, that distinguished leader tells us and tells the country that the
measure itself will be impotent, that it eliminates silver or the further use
of. it for the present.
Mr. SHERMAN. I did not say a word to that effect. On the contrary, I spoke
strongly in favor of silver to its largest extent, so that it would not demonetize gold.
Mr. GORMAN. If I have misunderstood the Senator, all around me here
seem to have shared with me in misunderstanding him. He has said that
the passage of the bill as it stands will not give the relief to the country that
the country has expected.
Mr, SHERMAN. I said it might not meet the expectations of the people.
Mr, GORMAN. If his argument was understood at all on this side of the
Chamber, he said that when the bill is passed the Treasury will not be in a
condition to meet the wants of the country, or to keep thefinancesin a healthy
condition; and the only relief suggested by the Senator is to issue bonds, authorizing the Secretary of the Treasury to use them not only for the purpose
of maintaining the parity between the two metals, but for the ordinary expenditures of the Government.
Mr. SHERMAN. Will the Senator allow me to ask him a question?
Mr. GORMAN. With great pleasure.
Mr. SHERMAN. HOW does he propose to pay the deficiency in the revenues
of 850,000,000, reported by the Secretary of the Treasury?
Mr, GORMAN. I will come to that, if the Senator will pardon me a moment.
Now, Mr. President, if I understood the position of the Democratic party
in the beginning of this controversy, it was that we pledged ourselves to the
repeal of the Sherman law.

That was the pledge of the Democratic platform at Chicago.
That was the pledge to which I have always responded; it is a
pledge thatl am willing to enact by my vote to-day, the repeal
of the Sherman law.
Mr. BUTLER. A part of it?
Mr, GORMAN. NO, sir; the whole law. Our platform demanded it.
Every newspaper that has breathed a Democratic breath at first demanded
that Congress should carry out the decree of the party. I take it that other
Senators like myself were questioned by the great metropolitan press as to
whether we were in favor of the absolute repeal of that law, the whole law,
without conditions. When that was being strongly urged I do not think I
am mistaken when I say that the distinguished Senator from Ohio, in a
speech or an interview in his own State, denounced the repeal of the entire
Sherman law, and stated that he would favor the repeal of the purchasing
clause alone.

There broke the light in upon this majority that we have on
this side of the Chamber, when the Senator from Ohio in his
own State announced that he would not vote for the repeal of
the entire Sherman law, but would vote for the repeal of the
purchasing clause alone. Then a new and sudden light sprung
upon the Democrats upon this side of the Chamber who follow

that Senator, and they embraced it with religious fervor.
Senator from Maryland continues:


I am not mistaken in that. If I am, I ask the Senator to correct me. The
Senator says that now?
Mr. SHERMAN. I believe that is what the bill professes to do.
Mr. GORMAN. Yes; that is what the bill professes. I am coming to that.
The President of the United States, anxious and earnest in his desire for its
repeal, was too astute and learned a statesman not to know that he had not
the power in his own party or with his own party to repeal any portion of
that law, because the division is so sharp and great among both parties that
neither party would have the power to deal with this question and make the
repeal, and we were compelled to take the terms offered by the Senator from

W e were compelled to take the terms offered by the Senator
from Ohio.
He held the key of the position. Y o u have dictated the terms to us. It
was the only thing we could get you to agree to for the relief of the country.

This falling out amongst these friends, all of whom went outside of the Democratic party to make their coalition, seems to
have been sudden and serious. For a time it was a divorce a
mensa et thoro. Now it appears that it is to be a divorce a vinculo matrimonii. It is a pity that such lovers should so early
come to grief.
You have dictated the terms to us.

That may be said of the coalition; but I, as a Democrat, thank
Almighty God that the Senator from Ohio has never had the
power to dictate terms to me. He may dictate them to the
President, to the Committee on Finance, to the Democracy on
this side who follow his lead; but he can not dictate terms to
Then, Mr. President, when Congress met, we came here with forty-four
Senators on this side of the Chamber, elected as Democrats, only one-half of
this body, with the perfect knowledge on the part of every intelligent man
In the Union that the party was hopelessly divided upon this question, as
your party is also hopelessly divided. It may be said with truth that a large
majority of the Democrats were at the beginning: of the session against the
repeal even of the purchasing clause of the Sherman act.

That seems to have been ascertained here. I was not here to
know how the situation was; but it seems to have been ascertained by the wiseacres who lead these respective parties in
their legislation in this Chamber and elsewhere that a majority
of the Senate was against the repeal of the entire Sherman act
without a substitute, and they were against the repeal even of
the purchasing clause.


Mr. GORMAN. The unconditional repeal. It was known that you had from
thirteen to fifteen Republicans opposed to repeal. It was believed, and I
think it was a fact easily made perfectly plain to everybody, that a clear majority of all the Senators elected were not in favor of the unconditional repeal,
but they wanted some modification.

So the President and the Senator from Ohio, when this pet
scheme was opened before the Senate of the United States, knew
that they did not have a majority of either party here for its repeal, or a majority of both parties.
Complaints have been made of delay in this matter. I am glad of the opportunity to say, and I say it in justice to those who have fought this bill,
that those of us who intended to vote for its final passage believed that we
were in the minority, and a delay of weeks became necessary that we might
convert enough to our side to pass the bill.


During this delay of weeks that occurred, because the friends
of this bill knew that they could not pass it through this body,
while opportunity was thus afforded for whatever of assistance
could be given to it, the whole of the metropolitan press of the
United States and the little resounding creatures that catch their
words and their inspirations from these greater sources roared
out their indignation against what they were pleased to call the
minority in the Senate, which according to the Senator from
Maryland was then the majority, because they would not pass
the bill. Anathemas have been heaped upon us until if they
could be believed by the Almighty he would consign us to eternal perdition for what we have been doing here, when the fact
was that the delay that was being occasioned in the Senate was
because the promoters of the pending bill knew they could not
pass it and were gambling for time.
Now, I thank God again that the light of truth has come to
life. We stand here to-day vindicated before the American people, as men who have been badgered, put upon, imposed upon in
the most outrageous and scandalous manner on thisfloorand elsewhere, becausa when they found at last, or supposed they found,
they had a majority for passing th 3 bill, they could not get us instantly to shut our mouths and come up and vote for our own
execution. Says the Senator from Maryland:
The fact of it was that we were not ready for its consideration. As time
went on the debate became sharp. And, Mr. President, I want to remark
right here that it has been a great debate. The annals of Congress will not
show one equal to it, and those who participated in it will go down to posterity as men who were equal to any who have preceded them.

He is mistaken about that. There will be a greater debate
than that before the people when this bill gets out before them,
and the people will be the debaters. They will debate it at the
ballot box, and when their oratory comes to be heard it will resound throughout this Union and down through all the tides of
coming time.
When the contest became sharp the doubt was then expressed as to the
power of the Senate to pass it, not as to the power to reach a vote, but the
power to pass unconditional repeal with a majority.

The doubt was not about reaching a vote, but it was about
passing the bill unconditionally by a majority of this body.
In the very midst of the fight, in the hottest of it, when men were anxious,
when every Senator was desirous that something might be done (and when
I say evtry Senator I mean all on both sides of the Chamber) to relieve the
great distress in the financial interests and in commercial affairs, the first
note of warning that we had, publicly uttered, came from the Senator from
Ohio, the Senator who led more than one-half of the repeal column, that it
was impossible to pass it. Here is his interview, published October 5,1893,
in a telegram to the Cincinnati Enquirer dated Washington, October 4:
" [Cincinnati Enquirer, October 5,1893.]
"WASHINGTON, D. C., October4.
" I called on Senator Sherman to-night. More than any other quantity in
the Senate he represents his party, I asked him bluntly if he believed the
law which bore his name would be repealed?
44 His answer was frank—direct:
" 4 1 do not,' said he.

That was October 4.
"Then,'' said I, "what next?"
can not," said he, "be explicit as to what next. The position of the
Republican members of the Senate is now passive. The Democrats are endeavoring to arrange a compromise. If they succeed, they can pass a com687

promise measure no matter if the Republican Senators are solidly arrayed
against it. Our side, or rather the large majority of our side, stand ready
to vote for unconditional repeal whenever the Democrats fix the time to
vote. W e are even ready to support a closure."
"Have you any idea," I asked, "of the terms of compromise?"
"No," said the Senator, " I am not in the secrets of those arranging it.
There have been several propositions involving the issue of bonds and the
reduction of the monthly purchases of silver. My judgment is, and it is,
however, a judgment, that in the end the Democrats will unite on a proposition to extend the provisions of the Sherman law three yeari, with a reduction of the monthly purchases of silver to 2,500,000 ounces of silver instead
of 4,500,000 ounces as now."
" Do you think the President would sign such a bill?"
" I have no reason of knowing. Yet I am impressed he will yield to a fair
compromise. If he does not he will destroy his party, and his Administration will be broken down.

Now, then, if the compromise was made and it was a fair one
and a just one and one to reconcile conflicting interests, it would
tend in every respect, if it had any tendency or any effect whatever,
to relieve the country. If the President has refused to sign it,
in the opinion of the Senator from Ohio, he breaks his party
down, destroys his prestige. There is no blessing to fall upon
the venerable head of the Senator from Ohio which I dare say
would be so delightful to him as the consummation of that very
well-arranged plan to put the President a second time in controversy with his friends in this body. Political manipulation for
the sake of party success has become in the United States of
America the substitute for every honorable and elevated sentiment of statesmanship, and all of our destiny is measured to-day,
it seems to#me, entirely by the question what effect it will have
upon the party. The Senator from Ohio said:
I think the reporter has been rather more accurate than usual in that interview.

Here is confirmation:
I think that was the substance of what I said. I desire merely to add only
that I believe the bill would not have passed but for the abortive attempt to
compromise, which, falling through, left nothing else to do but to pass it.
However that is a mere matter of interview bet we en ourselves.

That is a strange condition; that because a proposition was
made to compromise and it was agreed to, and untimately it fell
through, it was the reason why this bill should pass. So it seems
to me it makes no difference to us what we do or in what direction we tend, whatever we do is to be visited upon us as a judgment inflicted. If we agree to a compromise, that is regarded
as a surrender. If the compromise is broken up the bill must be
assed, because, not that we did not agree to the compromise but
ecause it could not be carried into execution, the President being unwilling to execute it.
October 4—

Says the Senator from Maryland—
is the date of this interview. The Senator from Ohio knew perfectly well, as
every other man in the country knew, that he was laying down a condition
for the Democratic party to unite.

He laying down a condition for the Democratic party to unite!
What is the Democratic party worth to itself, to the country, or
to posterity when the Senator from Ohio has the key to its situation and can lay down conditions to it? What is your majority
worth here in thus trifling with the people, thus deceived, thus


overrun, and finally handed over to the tender mercies of the
Senator from Ohio.
And we are told that—
He knew—

That is, the Senator from Ohio knew—
He knew to unite was as impossible as it was to fly, unless it meant the extension of the purchase of silver to some future period. He knew that the
demand in the country for its unconditional repeal coming to us through the
press and trade organizations in every section were such that the entire
Senate was most anxious to do something to relieve anxiety. He knew another thing, that with the difference of views upon this financial question between the East and the West and the North and the South it was impossible
to pass what we call in the Eastern States a sound financial bill with bonds
unless we had his cooperation and the cooperation of those on the other side
who thought with us; and when you placed the conditions upon the Democratic party, as you had the power to do, holding the key of the situation
with your 25 or 26 votes, you forced us into a position to take a measure that
would not be satisfactory to the people for whom the Senator from Ohio
speaks and whom I have the honor to represent in part on this floor.
But, Mr. President, there was an earnest desire, there has been from the
beginning of the session an earnest desire on this side of the Chamber, to
frame such legislation as might redound to the interest of all the people of
this country. Sharp as the division was upon the particular measures,
there is not a Democrat upon this side of the Chamber who was not impressed with a desire to harmonize the party, to sustain the Democratic Administration.

Bold words, yet true and full of comfort and consolation, because they are manly and because they are true; and I trust that
they may disabuse in the mind of the President of the United
States the injustice which is being done to many a sound Democrat far older in the party than he is, with the idea, doubtless,
often suggested to him, that his best friends are traitors to him
and to the Democracy. If he wishes to do so now, after this declaration, coming from an eminent man who has all the time sustained this policy of repealing the purchasing clause of the Sherman act, let him remain in darkness and help himself.
All were willing to make sacrifices of opinion and to set aside the convictions of a lifetime and unite in doing something which would relieve the
business distress, and save their Administration from defeat. They tried to
get together. They tried to do what was right. There were many of them
who shared the conviction that it is extraordinary, unusual, and unfortunate to strike down summarily, without an hour's warning, any great interest that we had built up or made possible by laws, no matter how vicious
and bad the laws themselves. Their deliberations could have been carried
to a consummation with the bonds that the Senator f r o m Ohio speaks of.

Yes, sir; it could have been done. There is not a man on this
floor or anywhere else in the United States who deprecates more
sincerely than I do the further taxation of the people of the
United States to sustain the reserve of gold in the Treasury,
which I always considered to be a useless and needless thing in
"a country like ours. There are none who would go further than
I would to prevent an increase of taxation for this purpose.
But Mr. President, I would do it only for the sake of peace
and harmony, not amongst the Democrats alone, but amongst
the people of the different sections of this country, for that sort
of peace and harmony and quietude and deliberation of action
and caution in progress of legislative expedient and provision
which would save to five or six States in the West the millions
of money that they have invested on our invitation in the opening up of the silver mines of that country—not merely under
our invitation, but under bounties and beneficencies that we


have extended as an inducement to them to stake the whole
battle of life upon their success in the opening up of silver mines
for the benefit of the people and the Treasury of the United
Not for the benefit of the makers of trinkets and ornaments,
but for the benefit of the substantial foundation of the great circulating medium and the debt-resolving and debt-paying power
of silver money in the country, that should underlie, along with
gold, the eternal union of the whole structure of our financial
system as it has done since this Government was a government,
and long before, while these colonies existed, and long before,
during the ages and cycles of time where civilization has been
found to have addressed itself in its growth and in its prosperity
to this strong foundation as its sure and steadfast support.
I should have voted, Mr. President, even to tax the people; I
should have gone to a constituency who would have blamed me
at first most seriously for having done a thing of that kind; but,
appealing to their reason and their judgment, I should have said
to them: " You have made many sacrifices and you have done it
in a manly way, and the reward has come to you in the end in
an abundance of progress, which perhaps you had not yourselves
contemplated; and now, rather than to tear the structure down
rudely, rather than to yield summarily to the removal of silver
from the basis of its powers as a debt-paying money, I preferred
further to tax you; I did not wish to do it, but I had it to do in
order to ease the situation until the people at the ballot box
could get control of this Government and have the power to pass
their final decree that there was to be no more of this kind of
I signed that paper, and I did it, Mr. President, under these
views, and indorsed every word and syllable in it—I mean that
part of it—but I signed it in order to have peace and fraternity
in the Democratic party. Now, when it is broken up by the refusal of the Senator from Ohio to accept it, while it does not
accord with his views of the policy which he has been commissioned by somebody to dictate to the Democratic party as wise,
it passes out of existence, and the next, and only resource, we
are told, is to vote for the bill, commit suicide because you can
not get a chance to live on fair terms with your friends and
neighbors. That is the proposition.
I am very glad, Mr. President, that this matter has come to
light. I feel greatly relieved personally, and I know my colleagues here—the majority of the Democrats on this side of the
Chamber—who are opposed to this bill all feel relieved that
they are no longer to occupy the category of disruptionists and
obstructionists: that they are no longer to be classed as men who
are fit only for being gagged and choked and bound hand and
foot and made to sit in silence while other men conduct the
affairs of the Government.
I feel gratified that the truth has come to light, and that our
vindication did not depend and does not depend upon posterity or upon history or upon asseveration or disclaimer upon our
part; but it comes from the mouth of an eminent Senator, who
has been all the time opposing our views on this question.
Prom 1873 to this the supporters of this cruel law have been

in the minority, and the people have condemned it at every election when the question has been raised. But only on one occasion have they had the power in Congress to overcome a Presidential veto with a two-thirds vote. To do that they were forced
to make the compromise of the Bland bill. The Presidential
veto has always stood ready as a reserve corps to shield this law
of 1873, and the will of the people has thus been thwarted. Why
both the great political parties, as they have come successively
into power, have been forced to lend the veto power to the protection of the first Sherman law is a matter that is not in the
least obscure to the campaign executive committees of both parties. It is a simple story, but a very sad one, which runs thus:
they could not, when successful, refuse to protect the interests
of the moneyed classes who furnished the means to conduct the
political campaigns.
Now, I do not wish to be misunderstood as to this statement.
I do not mean that the candidates for the Presidency, on either
side, are pledged in advance to the use of the veto power, or any
other power, for the doing of anything that is not promised in
the platform of the party.
I mean that they have no moral power to refuse the demands
made upon them when they are reconcilable to their personal
opinions, no matter how far they may disappoint the will of the
people expressed in the ballot box. They find excuses for refusing to obay the will of the people.
We have had one example of this moral coersion which this
country can never forget. I allude to the counting in of Mr.
Hayes as President, when Mr. Tilden was elected. Mr. Hayes
had no power to resist the fiat of his party managers and would
have been disgraced, as a traitorous poltroon, if he had declined
to accept the office after his party had thrust him into it, even
if he had been conscious, as millions of people believed was the
fact, that he was not elected to the Presidency.
There is in the United States a distinct political class, known
as the managers of Presidential campaigns, who exercise unwonted powers in the control of executive and legislative measures.
They are consulted first, if not exclusively, by their respective
parties, upon every great public question. In effect they too
frequently hold and control the veto power. They are 44 the
power behind the throne, greater than the throne itself," and
while they are irresponsible to the people they rule largely in
their affairs.
This class of politicians must needs be very close to the
moneyed classes and corporations from whom they obtain the
sinews of war, and can not take sides with the people against
those classes. This is a terrible and growiogevil. All of these
party dictators, on both sides, have fenced in the Sherman law
of 1873 with barriers that the people have not been able to
While their sway continues, the people will get no relief as
to the use of silver as a money metal. No President since Gen.
Grant has had the power to withstand them. He would never
have consented to the destruction of silver as a money metal,
if he had known or suspected that it was slain in the Sherman

law of 1873, or in the Revised Statutes. When this hill has become a law, I can not now see any remedy for the people save
in the election of a President who is friendly to silver as a part
of the American system of finance.
After the effect of the Sherman law of 1873 was known, and
its operation had filled the land with tramping wanderers in
search of work, to earn or beg their bread, the Democratic party,
in obedience to its traditional duty, took up the cause of the suffering multitudes, and with earnest promises won their votes to
its standards.
This is the cause, Mr. President, of the strength of the Democratic party to-day. After five years of effort they had gained
enough power to pass the Stanley Matthews resolutions for the
restoration of silver and the Bland-Allison act for the purchase and
coinage of silver dollars,and to reestablish its debt-paying power.
The people voted this relief to themselves, and their representatives in Congress were only prevented from granting it as fully
as it had existed from the foundation of the Government until
1873 by the threatened use of the veto power. That power of a
minority, used by a President who acted in harmony with them,
was the barrier to the full exercise of the will of the people in
the remonetization and free coinage of silver.
The minority thus triumphed over the people and sustained
their oppressors, and perpetuated their power to fill all the
marts of commerce with bankruptcies and all the homes of industry with idleness and want.
The partial relief gained by the people through a compromise
with the money power in the Bland-Allison bill was secured by
a two-thirds vote of each House over the veto of President
Hayes. If he had been backed by a subservient party even that
relief would have been refused. The people moved onward
after that for the completion of the great reformation for fifteen
years, and again struck for the free coinage of silver on equal
terms with gold. Again the veto power was invoked by the
minority, and its threatened exercise was potent to defeat their
The controversy resulted in another Sherman law of 1890,
which was also a compromise. In each of these compromises
the people gained ground to the front, and would have triumphed over their oppressors but for the power in the grasp of
the minority which was found in the control of the veto power.
The bankers and stock gamblers, and the trust manipulators
and the men who lurk in ambush to lorce the markets into corners, after a third trial, had fully ascertained the advantage
they had in the control of the veto power.
Knowing that the people were aroused and would demand
their rights, these conspirators, as an advance movement in the
campaign of 1892, set about to capture the control of the veto
power, no matter which of the great leading political parties
should elect the President. They directed their supreme efforts
to the nomination of candidates for the Presidency bv each party
who they knew would use the veto power, when needed, to
prevent the restoration of silver as a full money metal equally
with gold. They succeeded, and, in doing this evil, they inflicted


upon the people a wrong as novel as it was stupendous, and by
means that threaten the utmost danger to the Republic.
Money, which is their power, their only power, was used in
enormous sums to control the two national conventions as to
their membership and the nominations. How much was used, no
self-respecting American is willing, it seems, to inquire. The
subject is forbidding. There are men who know these facts, but
there are none who are willing to disclose them. The result was
that the control of the veto power, as a reserved force to check
silver legislation, was secured to the minority on these questions
of finance, whether the Democrats or the Republicans should
elect their nominees.
They had no bargain or understanding to this effect; they did
not need this; but they nominated men for the Presidency who
were committed in public and official utterances to the sternest
opposition to a return to the free coinage of silver, and whose
recorded opinions would be their platform. Then in the national conventions they took care that in the pledges made to
the people there should be a great show of friendship for silver,
resounding promises, glittering generalities, and deceptive flatteries, which could be complied with as the parity fraud in the
second Sherman law is complied with, by a total subversion of the
plain intent of the law.
It was a sight to inspire mirth among the dead tenants of the
catacombs to see two Presidential candidates striving to grasp
the scepter of the veto power that they might wield it for the
destruction of silver money, and yet professing to be the friends
of bimetallism. They led opposing and belligerent forces in a
joint campaign against silver. In those candidates and in those
platforms the coalition began which is now being consummated
in Congress, for the defeat of the will of the people expressed in
every Democratic victory, at least since that party began to have
a history.
The coalition assumes, with good reason, that it is in a
numerical majority in the Senate. A majority of whom, I would
inquire? Does one Senator in Georgia, one in North Carolina,
one in Virginia, one in Kentucky, one in Texas, one in Oregon
claim with any show of reason that he represents the majority
of the people in each of these States, as against his colleague,
when he votes for the destruction of silver as a money metal?
The doctrine of the Constitution is that within its limitations
the majority of the people rules. The doctrine of the coalition is that the numerical majority of Senators present in the
Chamber rules absolutely, though the people may have instructed
them in the elections, never so plainly, that they are violating
the expressed will of a majority of the people. In a parliamentary sense this is true; but is it honest to vote down the expressed will of the people in the Senate unless it is done to check
the dangerous execution of the popular will until wiser counsels
can prevail?
When the wishes of the voting population in the United States
are expressed, it is my belief that the ancient doctrine of the
Democratic party, that gold and silver shall have equal privileges at the mint, is largely in the majority. That it is in a majority of eight-tenths in the Democratic party there is scarcely


a doubt. The bare numerical majority of the coalition in the
Senate violates and rides down the Democratic majority and
chains it to the triumphal car of the minority and of the Republicans.
It violates the Chicago Democratic platform, as the Senator
from Maryland [Mr. GORMANJ in his speech so truly said, and
adopts, with an amendment, the Sherman law—the cowardly
makeshift—as the embodiment of sound Democratic doctrine.
This is done under the false pretense that this bill is an unconditional repeal of the Sherman law of 1890, or of the purchasing
clauses in that law. So far from that being true, this bill is not
an unconditional repeal of any part of the Sherman law of 1890.
It is only a repeal of one feature of that law, upon the express
condition that every other section and feature of it shall remain
in force.
There is not the least ground or warrant in the Democratic
national platform for this action, unless that platform was designed only as an artful and deceptive method of destroying silver as a money metal. No mere coalition of Democrats and Republicans, with the SenatorfromOhiofMr. SHERMAN] in the lead of
one faction, or both, can thus depart from and disjoint the Chicago Democratic platform and impose upon me, as a Democrat,
the acceptance of this treason to party faith. W e are told to
vote, and that speedily, upon this travesty of Democracy, dished
up and dictated by the'Senator from Ohio [Mr. SHERMAN]. W h o
made this a Democratic creed? This I will presently show.
If the President had no veto power in reserve with which to
defeat the will of the people and the votes in Congress of twothirds save one, of their representatives, so as to compel Congress to take this or worse, this piping in the market place would
go on indefinitely and unheeded, without anyone being found to
As it is, the minority of the Democracy, aided by the reserve
force, the veto power must have sway until the whole Democracy
can speak. They will speak in no uncertain terms and the Government will yet obey.
The old guard, who have borne the banners of Democracy
above harder fought fields than this, will not be alarmed into
inaction by the threats of legislative compulsion that are made
on this floor. W e expect that, when the coalition has accomplished its object by the starvation of the people, we shall
be upbraided with the charge of moral cowardice, and it will be
said that we shrank from contact with a cloture imported from
the British Parliament through the Republican Speaker of the
House of Representatives in the Fifty-first Congress. That odious
tyranny was not born to rule the Senate of the United States.
A General Tom Thumb can not do great harm with the club of
If a Presidential policy is to be worked out through a gag held
in one hand and the veto power in the other such assumed
powers would so far exceed the grants in the Constitution that
the most abject party slave would fly from such a ruler.
W e have been threatened here both with the gag of the cloture
and the veto of the President because we have asked for information as to what will be done for the people when their silver


legal-tender money is destroye cl and they are to be taxed to put
crutches under the arms of the golden god created by the two Sherman laws of 1873 and 1890 and enthroned by that of 1893. When
we are asking these questions we are told to vote!
Vote speedily, for the hungry coalition majority will not wait
to be questioned. W e are not allowed the right of petition so
that we may ask the President what he next proposes to do, after
the second Sherman bill, that of 1890, has been amended and
made more fatal to silver money by that of 1893. Those in the
Senate who seem to be conducting business for the President and
are supposed to be informed of wh it is to become of the people,
make no answer to the many bills sent them for consideration.
They give no sign to indicate what is hidden in the womb of the
Is the State-bank tax to be repealed? Are the people to be
taxed to borrow gold to meet the $650,000,000 if gold obligations,
including the national-bank notes, for all of which, by the fiat
of the Secretary of the Treasury, we are held liable in gold coin?
Are we to add to this another $100,000,000 in order to cover the
balances of trade, or the interest on debts, or the dividends on
railroad and other stocks, as fast as we earn them, for our foreign creditors? Are we to have a bankrupt law as a forlorn
hope? Are we to have an income tax to help those who labor and
starve, by forced contributions from the nonproducing classes?
Or are we to be left where we have been for twenty years, a
constant prey to the speculations of those who can increase or
depress the currency at will, and take tithes and tolls at pleasure from the earnings and property of the industrial classes.
One word of encouragement from the President, or from the
coalition, would be a grateful relief to the apprehensions of the
people and would tend to establish that confidence the want of
which is said to be the cause of all the sufferings of the people.
Instead of this we are told that conferences and caucuses are in
vain, and that compromise is scouted as an unworthy condescension. This is harsh, arbitrary, and unworthy treatment; all the
more painful because our political enemies are invited to become the willing instruments of our coercion. From that rod
and that staff we can get no comfort. The funeral knell of the
liberty of free speech in the Senate, that came from Rhode
Island when the force bill was under debate, and only ceased
when Colorado and Nevada interposed their sovereign powers,
is again jangling in strange and ominous peals in New York
and Indiana, and we are threatened with duress, if not with punishment.
I am afraid that the country will be slow in forgetting this
wanton method of hasty and summary dealing with the strangulated silver States—the silver States of the West.
They have not deserved this. The first two Sherman laws
and the great rupee theft of Great Britain, it is true, have depressed the market value of silver bullion until 65 cents' worth
of pure metal will coin into a full dollar. Yet it is equally true
that the Bland-Allison law has made that dollar as good as a
gold dollar, both to the Government and the people, and no man
has been shaved one cent on any silver dollar. If through our
"cowardly makeshifts'' we have given this advantage to the


silver miners, shall we forget how their productions saved our
people, if not our Government, from bankruptcy when BaringBrothers, by their wild investments, compelled the Bank of Eng land to borrow money from the Bank of France to tide over that
England turned to us for gold and got it. This draft would
have bankrupted our people had not these silver miners poured
into our Treasury $60,000,000 of silver bullion per annum, which,
with $33,000,000 of gold from our mines, enabled our peop e to
conduct all their home industries almost without difficulty.
In some remarks that I was permitted to make on the 2Sth
September, I attempted to demonstrate (not m vain, I hope)
that these silver miners were forced into this attitude by the
false principles upon which the first and second Sherman laws
are based, and that they were deprived by those laws of their
constitutional right to mine and use silver as a money metal, a
metal that is precious, as the redeemer of promises, and to have
it coined at the mints as their property.
A people robbed of rights that exist under the Constitution,
and were enforced with extreme care under statutes approved
by Gen. Washington in 1792, and by Gen. Jackson in 1637, and
were undisturbed for eighty years, are not to be treated with
contempt because those who deride them have been successful,
in a degree, in a conspiracy to destroy such rights and the market value of their property.
The tyrant may scoff at and deride his mutilated victim, but
honest men will help him to assert the holy rights of man. I
will abide with the noble people, whose commission entitles me
to a voice in this Chamber, in upholding the rights of our sister
States in the mountains of the West, and I will not join the multitude in demanding their destruction because they can point
to these States in their distress and helplessness and say, i4 If
thou be king, deliver thyself from thine enemy."
In standing by these States and peoples in their hour of great
trial I will violate no tradition or creed of the true Democracy.
I am anxious to establish my Democracy on these lines as the
friend of the equal rights of gold and silver before the law, no
that the larger and stronger men who have of late clambered
upon the Democratic platform shall not crowd me off the modest
back seat where I have been during all my manhood and where
I intend to abide even unto the end.
On the 28th October, 1893, the following Democrats voted in
the Senate for restoring to the people the right of free coinage
of silver as it existed under the act of 1792 approved by Gen.
Washington, one hundred years ago, and again by Gen. Jackson
in 1837, fifty-six years ago. They are: Senators BATE, BERRY,
B L A C K B U R N , B U T L E R , C A L L , COKE, D A N I E L , GEORGE, H A R R I S ,
I R B Y , JONES of A r k a n s a s , M A R T I N , PASCO, P U G H , R O A C H ,

VANCE, VEST, and W A L T H A L L , 18 D e m o c r a t s v o t i n g .

A n d the

following Democrats were paired in favor of the free coinage of
s i l v e r , n a m e l y : COCKRELL, COLQUITT, MORGAN, a n d W H I T E of

California, making 22 Democrats who support the free coinage
of silver in the Senate.
The Democrats in the Senate who refused to support the free

c o i n a g e of silver are Messrs. CAFFERY, CAMDEN, FAULKNER,


WHITE of Louisiana—16 Democrats voting against silver,
and the following Democrats were paired against the amendment for its free coinage, namely, BRICE, GORDON, HUNTON,
and MILLS—in all, 20 Democratic Senators. Thus we see that
it is still the Democratic doctrine in the Senate that the
people of the United States demand and will have the free coinage of silver if it is in the power of the Democracy to restore
to them that constitu tionai and Democratic boon. That this
is the Democratic doctrine, with majorities running into hundreds of thousands among the people, will soon be demonstrated
in a way that will never be forgotten.
In the list of Senators who voted, or were paired, against silver free coinage are several far better entitled to Democratic
consideration than I am, so far as the value of their opinions is
concerned, with whom I h ave been voting and acting for many
years on the Democratic side of the question. This will appear
more distinctly from some records to which I will presently invite the attention of the S enate.
What may be their reasons for their change of attitude towards this subject is not a matter that concerns me personally;
but I wish only to state the fact with emphasis that I have not
changed my opinions or my votes on this vital question. I have
not abandoned the Democratic creed, which has stood the test
of a century of experience, and is the same now as it was in 1792.
There seems to be a charm for them in this third Sherman
bill which can neither be broken by the denunciations of our
party platform adopted at Chicago, nor by the arguments that
we have been able to advance to show that it is the last fatal
blow at silver as a money metal.
If we part company on this question, the most important that
now concerns the country, it will only be because I refuse to leave
the old Democratic ground and to accept the leadership of the
honorable Senator from Ohio in his relentless war upon silver as
a money metal.
Let us see what Democrats have been doing since 1873 in the
Senate to defeat the Senator from Ohio in his war upon bimetallism.
The subject came up in 1878, in the Senate, as it had come up
previously in various elections held. On the 5th of November,
Mr. BLAND moved to suspend the rules and pass the following hill:
An act to authorize the free coinage of the standard silver dollar, and to
restore its legal-tender character.
Be it enacted, etc., That there shall he coined, at the several mints of the
United States, silver dollars of the weight of 412} grains troy of standard
silver, as provided in the act of January 18, 1837, on which shall he the device and superscriptions provided by said act; which coins, together with
all silver dollars heretofore coined by the United States of like weight and
fineness, shall be a legal tender, at their nominal value, for all debts and
dues, public and private, except where otherwise provided by contract; and
any owner of silver bullion may deposit the same at any United States coining mint, or assay office, to be coined into such dollars, for his benefit upon
the same terms and conditions as gold bullion is deposited for coinage under
existing laws.
SEC. 3. All acts and parts of acts inconsistent with the provisions of this
act are hereby repealed.


I have read the whole of the proposed statute in order to show
its very identity with the amendment of the Senator from Kansas [Mr. PEFFER] which was voted down in the Senate by Democratic votes last Saturday.
This was agreed to, yeas 164, nays 34, 92 not voting. Among
the yeas I find Mr. MILLS of Texas, and Mr. HUNTON of Virginia, and various other of the leading lights of the Democratic
party, with whom, Mr. President, I have felt honored in the
opportunity of being associated during my political career in
this body and long before, so that if a juvenile like myself in
political affairs as I was then was misled in respect of the true
Democratic doctrine I shall have to ask one of those Senators or
both of them to act the part of a scapegoat for me and take my
sins upon their shoulders and to run to cover somewhere. They
have run to cover, Mr. President, and I am afraid they are going
to leave me in my sins.
The Stanley Matthews resolution came up in the Senate on
the 16th of January, 1878, which involved the whole of the doctrine contained in the Bland bill, which had passed the House
by this tremendous majority, and that resolution I will also read.
I put it on the record, not for the information of the Senate, but
because I desire my constituents to know what the facts are, in
order that they may determine whether they and I have belonged to the Democratic party and have been in line with them
all these years, or whether we have been so fatally mistaken in
our attitude upon this question. The resolution submitted by
Mr. Matthews, who was not a Democrat (he was a Republican
from Ohio, afterwards a member of the Supreme Court, and a
very eminent one), is as follows:
Whereas by the act entitled " An act to strengthen the public credit," approved March 18, 1869, it was provided and declared that the faith of the
United States was thereby solemnly pledged to the payment in coin or its
equivalent of all the interest-bearing obligations of the United States, except in cases where the law authorizing the issue of such obligations had
expressly provided that the same might be paid in lawful money or other
currency than gold and silver; and
Whereas all the bonds of the United States authorized to be issued by the
act entitled " A n act to authorize the refunding of the national debt," ap{>roved July 14,1870, by the terms of said act, were declared to be redeemable
n coin of the then present standard value, bearing interest payable semiannually in such coin; and
Whereas all bonds of the United States authorized to be issued under the
act entitled " An act to provide for the resumption'of specie payments.'' approved January 14, 1875, are required to be of the description of bonds of
the United States prescribed in the said act of Congress approved July 14,
1870, entitled " An act to authorize the refunding of the national debt;" and
Whereas at the date of the passage of said act of Congress last aforesaid,
to wit, the 14th day of July, 1870, the coin of the United States of standard
value of that date included silver dollars of the weight of 412£ grains each,
declared by the act approved January 18,1837, entitled "An act supplementary to the act entitled 'An act establishing a mint and regulating the coins
of the United States,'" to be a legal tender of payment, according to their
nominal value, for any sums whatever: Therefore,
Be it resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring therein),
That all the bonds of the United States issued or authorized to be issued
under the said acts of Congress hereinbefore recited are payable, principal
and interest, at the option of the Government of the United States, in silver
dollars, of the coinage of the United States, containing 412£ grains each of
standard silver: and that to restore to its coinage such silver coins as a legal
tender in payment of said bonda, principal, and interest, is not in violation
of the public faith nor in derogation of the rights of the public creditor.

The Senator from Vermont [Mr. MORRILL] proposed to refer
the resolution to the Committee on the Judiciary, and that mo687


tion was negatived by 19 yeas and 31 nays. Mr. Conkling moved
to amend it so as to make it a joint resolution, which was not
agreed to—yeas 23, nays 39. The object of Mr. Conkling in
making the motion to change it from a concurrent to a joint resolution was obvious. It was that the President of the United
States might have a chance to strike it down with his veto.
Mr. Edmunds moved to strike out of the resolution after the
word " interest," in the fourth line, etc., and the vote was taken
on that—18 yeas and 44 nays.
The Senator from Vermont [Mr. MORRILL] moved to strike
out the words "are payable," in the fifth line, etc. It was disagreed to—yeas 14, nays 41.
Mr. Edmunds moved to postpone the resolution indefinitely,
which was disagreed to—yeas 22, nays 43. Now among the yeas
there were the following Democrats:
Messrs. Barnum, Bayard, Eaton, Kernan, Lamar, MCPHERSON, and Randolph.
Among the nays were Messrs. Armstrong, Bailey, Beck, COKE,
Davis of West Virginia, Dennis, Eustis, GORDON, Grover, Hereford, Johnston, Jones of Florida, McCreery, McDoDald, Maxey,
Merrimon, MORGAN, RANSOM, Saulsbury, Thurman, VOORHEES,

Wallace, Withers. There were 43 votes in the negative, quite
a large number of whom were Republicans. On agreeing finally
to the resolution the vote was 43 yeas to 22 nays. Now I will
read that vote: The yeas were Messrs. ALLISON, Armstrong,
Bailey, Beck, Booth, Bruce, CAMERON of Pennsylvania, Cameron
of Wisconsin, Chaffee, COKE, Conover, Davis of Illinois, Davis
of West Virginia, Dennis, Dorsey, Eustis, Ferry, GORDON,
Grover, Hereford, Howe. Johnston, Jones of Florida, JONES of
Nevada, Kirkwood, McCreery, McDonald, McMillan, Matthews,
Maxey, Merrimon, MORGAN, Oglesby, Plumb, RANSOM, Saulsbury, Saunders, Spencer, TELLER, Thurman, VOORHEES, Wallace, Withers—43.
And the nays were: Messrs. Anthony, Barnum, Bayard, Blaine,
Burnside, Christiancy, Conkling, Dawes, Eaton, Edmunds, Hamlin, Kernan, Lamar, MCPHERSON, Mitchell, MORRILL, Paddock,
Randolph, Rollins, Sargent, Wadleigh, Windom—22.
So that resolution passed in the Senate by the vote of all the
Democrats in that body except saven. The resolution went to
the House, and on the 29th of January, 1878, the preamble and
resolution were adopted by a vote of 189 yeas to 79 nays. Of
course amongst the yeas the Democrats were very greatly in the
This subject cams up again in the Fifty-first Congress, in 1890.
It was upon a bill that had passed the House of Representatives
and come over to the Senate, if I have it right, and I think I
have. It was a bill for the coinage of silver money under the
act of 1837, with certain additional provisions in it, which were
quite in harmony with the general purport of the act. It passed
the House of Representatives, it seems, by a vote of 135 yeas to
119 nays. It was considered in the Senate on a report from the
Finance Committee made by the Senator from Vermont [Mr,
MORRILL] on the 11th day of June, 1890, and after considerable
debate and many motions for amendment and postponement, etc.,


Mr. Plumb, of Kansas, presented the following substitute for
the bill:
That from and after the date of the passage of this act the unit of value in
the United States shall be the dollar, and the same may be coined of 412J
grains of standard silver or of 25.8 grains of standard gold, and the said coins
shall be equally legal tender for all sums whatever.
That hereafter any owner of silver or gold bullion may deposit the same
at any mint of the United States, to be formed into standard dollars or bars
for his benefit and without charge; but it shall be lawful to refuse any
deposit of less value than $100, or any bullion so base as to be unsuitable for
the operations of the mint.

Mr. BLAIR proposed an amendment to it and Mr. VEST moved
to change the last clause of thefirstsentence of Mr. Plumb's substitute, so as to read:
And the said coins shall be legal tender for all debts, public and private.

Mr. Plumb's substitute was then agreed to—yeas 43, nays 24.
Now, I will read the yeas:

Messrs. B A T E , B E R R Y , Blair, B l o d g e t t , BUTLER, C A L L , CAMERON, Carlisle, COCKRELL, COKE, COLQUITT, DANIEL, Eustis,
GEORGE, Gibson, GORMAN, HARRIS, Heacrst, Ingalls, JONES of
of Arkansas, JONES of Nevada, Kenna, MANDERSON, MITCH-

ELL, MoodyI MORGAN, Paddock, Payne, Plumb, POWER, PUGH,

HANSOM, Reagan, Sanders, SQUIRE, S T E W A R T , T E L L E R , T U R PIE, VANCE, V E S T , VOORHEES, W A L T H A L L , WOLCOTT—43.

The nays were:

LOM, Dawes, Edmunds, Evarts, F R Y E , G R A Y , H A L E , H A W L E Y ,
Hiscock, H O A R , MCPHERSON, MORRILL, Pierce, Sawyer, SHER-

MAN, Spooner. STOCKBRIDGE, WASHBURN, Wilson of Maryland—24.
There were only three Democrats in that minority. That bill
failed to become a law, it having been substituted by what is
now known as the Sherman act of 1890, which was passed on the
14th of July, 1890, every Democrat in the Senate voting against
it. There again it appears that I was not only with the Democratic party in my views upon this subject, but that a very large
number of Democrats entertained the same idea of what the duty
of a Democrat was in respect to the free coinage of silver.
Then the subject came up again in the House of Representatives in the Fifty-second Congress, the 7th of March, 1892, on a
resolution reported from the Committee on Rules by Mr. CATCHINGS, of the House, that "after the morning hour the House
proceed to the consideration of H. R. 4426, being a bill for the
free coinage of gold and silver, for the issue of coin notes, and
for other purposes, and should said bill be not sooner disposed
of the House shall continue the consideration thereof,5' etc.
That was taken up on a vote of 195 yeas to 73 nays, and after a
long struggle in the House of Representatives the bill came over
to the Senate.
On July 3,1892, the bill S. 51, to provide for the free coinage of
gold and silver bullion, and for other purposes, was up. It is a
mere repetition in substance, not exactly identical in language,
with the act of 1837.
Mr. DOLPH moved to recommit the bill, and on that motion
there were 28 yeas, and the nays were 31. The votes for recommittal were:

Y e a s — M e s s r s . A L L I S O N , BRICE, CAREY, Carlisle, CULLOM,
MANDERSON, P A L M E R . Perkins, P L A T T , PROCTOR, SaWyer,
STOCKBRIDGE, W a r r e n , W A S H B U R N , W H I T E — 2 8 .

And the nays were:

HARRIS, H I L L , JONES of Nevada, Kenna, K Y L E , M I L L S , MITCHELL, MORGAN, Paddock, P E F F E R , POWER, RANSOM, SHOUP,
S T E W A R T , T E L L E R , TURPIE, V E S T , W A L T H A L L , W O L C O T T —

The final result was that the Senator from Missouri [Mr. VEST]
substituted all of the proposed legislation by an out-and-out
straight free-coinage bill, the best one, I think, that I have ever
seen since the act of 1837, and on its final passage the yeas were
29 and the nays were 25. On that the yeas were:

And the nays were:

Messrs. ALLISON, BRICE, CAREY, Carlisle, CULLOM, D A V I S ,
Dawes, D I X O N , DOLPH, Felton, GALLINGER, GORMAN, G R A Y ,
H A L E , H A W L E Y , MCPHERSON, MANDERSON, P A L M E R , P e r kins, PROCTOR, Sawyer, STOCKBRIDGE, W a r r e n , W A S H B U R N ,

And opposed to it were the following Democrats: GORMAN,


Now, I have sufficiently shown, without going into greater details, that the Senate of the United States by the vote which it
gave, and the Democrats in the Senate by the vote that they
gave, which I have just been reading and "which seems to have
been recorded on the 1st of July, 18v)2, gave their definition to
the meaning of the platform of the Chicago convention of 1892,
which was adopted June 1, just a month before, in which it is
stated in Article VII:
SEC. 7. We denounce the Republican legislation known as the Sherman
act of 1890 as a cowardly makeshift, fraught with possibilities of danger
in the future which should make all of its supporters, as well as its author,
anxious for its speedy repeal. We hold to the use of both gold and silver
as the standard money of the country and to the coinage of both gold and
silver without discriminating against either metal or charge for mintage,
but the dollar unit of coinage of both metals must be of equal intrinsic
and exchangeable value, or be adjusted through international agreement
or by such safeguards of legislation as snail insure the maintenance of the
parity of the two metals and the equal power of every dollar at all times
In the markets and in the payment of debts; and we demand that all paper
currency shall be kept at par with and redeemable in such coin. We insist
upon this policy as especially necessary for the protection of the farmers
and laboring classes, the first and most defenseless victims of unstable
money and afluctuatingcurrency.

Now, that was the Democratic interpretation in the Senate of
the meaning of that platform. The Democrats who voted for the
free coinage of silver on the 1st of July, 1892, in this body, did
not mean to separate themselves from the party. They knew of
the existence of this platform. They interpreted its meaning.


It went to the country, and after that vote in the Senate of the
United States I could go to my constituents in Alabama, and did
go,to them, and informed them that, whatever there might be of
doubt or distrust connected with the vague expressions and uncertainties of the seventh clause of the Chicago platform, so far
as the Democracy in the Senate and in the House were concerned
it had all been removed; that we had made and affirmed the declaration in favor of the free coinage of silver in accordance with
the act of 1837, which had been signed by Gen. Jackson.
There was firm ground to stand upon. W e believed it. If I
had gone to the State of Alabama and told the Democrats of
that State the first thing that shculd be done by the President
of the United States after we should have elected him, or contributed our votes to his election, would have been to have put
silver in a position from which there was no possible extrication,
that it was to die in the Senate at the hands of its friends or in
the House of Representatives and by his command, that State
at least would never have cast its vote for him. There is no
question about that. I have told him so, of course in the most
friendly, cordial, and kindly manner, for that is exactly the sentiment that rules in my bosom in respect to the President of the
United States.
Not that only, but I have great pride in him as a Democrat,
and great hopes of the success of his power in the relief of the
country from other mischiefs besides this which are coming
upon us. But I had not any more distrust that the attitude of
the Democratic party was known upon this question, was thoroughly established, was beyond doubt or disputation—I had no
more distrust of it than I have of my own existence. You can
fancy the surprise with which I encountered here, not an appeal
to the men who passed that bill, not asking them to go into
council with the rest of the Democrats and see whether it were
not better under existing conditions and circumstances to waive
the attitude we took in July, 1890, but to be confronted with an
alliance that had already been formed, a coalition that had already been established by outside arrangements with the hon
orable Senator from Ohio, to whom was delivered, it appears,
the key of the situation, and who had the supreme office delegated to him by some authority—I do not know and I do not care
what it was—to dictate to the Senate of the United States and
to the Government what should be its policy in respect to silver.
I am not apt, Mr. President, to take umbrage at being neglected or overlooked. I do not care anything about the compli
mentary attentions of any man who lives, if I have a clear conscience and am permitted to act upon a sense of duty formed
on mypart. Whenever gentlemen cannot agree with me about
matters of that kind honors are simply easy between us. But I
feel as a Democrat and as one of a m vority of this body, after
that platform had been adopted at Chicago, and after we had
made this firm declaration to return to the platform of 1837, old
" Hickory" Jackson s platform there was something in the nature of a consideration due to the men who felt thus impelled to
give their votes in this body and to define their course on this
But instead of that we have been entirely overslaughed; and

wbori we presume to enter into a compromise, although we are
yet a majority in this body, the compromise is discarded and we
are thrown oack upon the arbitrary demands that this bill must
pass just as it has been framed by the dictation of the Senator
from Ohio [Mr. SHERMAN], no more and no less, and we must
look to the future for our relief.
Tee Senate would weary with me if I should undertake to trace
up the origin of this Democratic doctrine, and yet I can not forbear to quote a very few sentences from that most eminent Democrat, Thomas Jefferson, on this subject, to show that we are in
line with him also. He says:
It is a litigated question, whether the circulation of paper, rather than of
specie, is a good or an evil. In the opinion of England and of English
writers it is a good; in that of all other nations, it is an evil; and excepting
England and her copyist, the United States, there is not a nation existing,
I believe, which tolerates a paper circulation. The experiment is going on,
however desperately in England, pretty boldly with us, and at the end of the
chapter, we shall see which opinion experience approves; for I believe it to
be one of those cases where mercantile clamor will bear down reason, until
it is corrected by ruin. In the meantime, however, let us reason on this new
call for a national bank.

Mr. Jefferson was opposed to national banks, and at that stage
of the case he was opposed to paper money, because he did not
believe that the Government had sufficient control over the regulation of the volume of paper money to keep it in proper parallel
lines with the redeeming power that lay in the gold and silver,
which are at the foundation of all these promises.
He says further in criticism of Adam Smith:
The only advantage which Smith proposes by substituting paper in the
room of gold and silver money (B 2, c. 2, 434) is " to replace an expensive instrument with one much less costly, and sometimes equally convenient;"
that is to say (page 437),4'to allow the gold and silver to be sent abroad and
converted into foreign goods," and to substitute paper as being a cheaper
measure. But this makes no addition to the stock or capital of the nation.
The coin sent out was worth as much while in the country as the goods imported and taking its place. It is only, then, a change of form in a part of
the national capital from that of gold and silver to other goods. He admits,
too, that while a part of the goods received in exchange for the coin exported may be materials, tools, and provisions for the employment of an additional industry, a part also may be taken back in foreign wines, silks, etc.,
to be consumed by idle people who produce nothing; and so far the substitution promotes prodigality, increases expense and consumption without
increasing production. So far, also, then, it lessens the capital of the nation.
What may be the amount which the conversion of the part exchanged for
productive goods may add to the former productive mass, it is not easy to
ascertain, because," as he says (page 441), " i t is impossible to determine
what is the proportion which the circulating money of any country bears to
the whole value of the annual produce."

He goes on to discuss those questions to which I do not now
desire to call attention further. When speaking of cash or money
he always speaks of gold and silver. He uses them in conjunction. It never occurred to the mind of that wise statesman that
a period could ever arise in the United States when a divorce
between gold and silver should become necessary. It has never
arisen and it never will arise. E ven at this very m oment our legislation, our restrictions upon the use of silver, the legislation of
foreign countries, will drive the productive labors of the people
of the world into the gold mines; and it will not be five years
after the passage of this law until the country will do as Germany
did, and as other countries in Europe have done, abandon the


gold standard and adopt again the bimetallic standard, because
silver has got to be the scarcer metal. There is no doubt at all
about that.
On this subject perhaps I had better not volunteer any statement. I have great authority, however, for the statement I have
made. There is no doubt at all that the production of gold by
placer mining is very much cheaper labor. It yields more
abundantly in the way of profit to the mere day laborer than the
production of silver, which requires large investments to carry
on silver mines. However, I shall not go any further in the effort to illustrate that, but I will read a little further from Mr.
Jefferson. This is a letter to Mr. John W . Eppes:
In this state of things we are called on to add ninety millions more to the
circulation. Proceeding in this career, it is infallible that we must end where
there volutionary paper ended. Two hundred millions was the whole amount
,ef all the emissions of the old Congress, at which point their bills ceased to
circulate. We are now at that sum; but with treble the population and of
Course a longer tether. Our depreciation is, as yet, but at about 2 for l.
Owing to the support its credit receives from the small reservoirs of specie
in the vaults of the banks, it is impossible to say at what point their notes
will stop. Nothing is necessary to effect it but a general alarm; and that
may take place whenever the public shah begin to reflect on and perceive
the impossibility that the banks should repay this sum. At present, caution
is inspired no farther than to keep prudent men from selling property on long
payments. Let us suppose the panic to arise at three hundred millions, a
point to which every session of the Legislatures hasten us by long strides.
Nobody dreams that they would have three hundred millions of specie to
satisfy the holders of their notes.
Were they even to stop now no one supposes they have two hundred millions in cash, or even the sixty-six and two-thirds millions, to which amount
alone the law obliges them to repay. One hundred and thirty-three and
one-third millions of loss, then, is thrown on the public by law; and as to
the sixty-six and two-thirds, which they are legally bound to pay, and ought
to have in their vaults, everyone knows there is no such amount of cash in
the United States, and what would be the course with what they really have
there? Their notes are refused. Cash is called for. The inhabitants of the
banking towns will get what is in the vaults, until a few banks declare their
insolvency; when, the general crush becoming evident, the others will withdraw even the cash they have, declare their bankruptcy at once, and leave
an empty house and empty coffers for the holders of their notes. In this
scramble of creditors the country gets nothing, the town but little. What
are they to do ? Bring suits ? A million of creditors bring a million of suits
against John Nokes and Robert Styles wheresoever to be found? All nonsense. The loss is total.

His description of a panic produced by expanding the volume
of paper money seems to be a prophecy of the troubles we are
now having with the banks.
We have grown very much larger than Mr. Jefferson I think
ever supposed we could grow in so short a period, and we consequently have an expanded use and a still expanding use for
paper money, and it has got to be one of the established institutions of the country. But, Mr. President, the duty has arisen
and has increased in its obligations every step we have taken
that we should be more and more cautious and careful in respect
of the restraints to be imposed upon the issue of paper money.
We have out a vast amount of paper-money obligations of the
Government of the lAited States, and there is no dollar out today in the hands of the people, issued directly or indirectly by
the Government of the United States, including the nationalbank notes, that the Go /ernment is not responsible for its redemption in coin. When you come to the silver certificates the
Government has reserved to itself the right and option of re687


demotion in silver coin, and yet we are told that as an act of
magnanimity, or as an act of pride, or something like that—I
can hardly characterize it—as much as $5,000,000 of gold have
been paid out of the Treasury of the United States during this
time of distress for the redemption of silver certificates.
W e know that the gold has been paid out into the hands of
the employes of the Government of the United States. It is circulated 'here through the hands of these pages and the employes of the Senate. Gold has been distributed among us hero
in the payment of salaries by the Government of the United
States in the midst of all this outcry for its accumulation and
retention in the Treasury. The intent and purpose seems to be
in every possible direction, both by precept and by example, to
compel the rejection of silver and whatever else represents silver, even the silver certificates in that character from the circulation and convert them into gold on demand.
Well, that may be another way of killing silver. They need
not resort to any other. They have got enough now. This bill
will kill it effectually enough.
W e already refuse free coinage to silver on terms of equality
with gold at the mint. The people can not have it coined. W e
repeal this law and say there shall be no more silver purchased
by the United States for coinage; and thereupon we break the
market entirely; and the silver producers who may hereafter be
rash and indiscreet enough to dig it from the earth as a matter
of profit will find that they must go abroad with it, and sell it
in countries with hostile legislation against silver. They must
find Asiatics or some other people to buy it, if they can find
anybody using it, or else they must go to the trinket shops, the
tinker shops, the jewelry shops, and sell it there; or it must be
used for the purposes of decoration, or something like that.
This bill, when it has had its way with silver, utterly destroys
it as money in every possible sense and conception; there is
nothing of it left.
So now, with this vast mass of paper money issued >by the
United States, payable in coin, which the Senate of the United
States years and years ago, in 1878, voted was payable in silver
dollars as well asln gold coin, when all of this mass of money
has stricken from its foundation any support of silver, in so much
that no Treasury officer will pay out silver in the redemption of
any promise of the Government whatever, what becomes of this
enormous disparity between the cash spoken of by Mr. Jefferson—the gold, if you please—in the Treasury of the United
States, or within the power of the Treasury of the United States
to aocumulate, and this vast mass of debt amounting to 8 or 10
or 12 to 1? What have you got then to pledge to the people
of the United States that this Government will be able or will
ever undertake to redeem all of these paper promises in gold
that you have got out?
You have one resource, that to which ^ou have never failed
to resort. You hav-e the resource of taxing the patient, uncomplaining, patriotic, honest, industrious, and suffering people: and
to that you come. There you land. There this bill lands you;
and the third chapter in the revelation of this plan is that you
shall buy $200,000,000 of gold bonds supported by taxation upon
687 "


the people. You take from the people the money that they live
upon, that they live with, that they use in their daily transactions, that they can not get along- without. You take from them
the dollar, except the limited amount that you have got here,
that may yet he coined according to the remains of the Sherman
act which you canonize and put in the statute as something
worthy of worship by Democrats. You reserve that, and allow
it to lie in bullion in these vaults or to be coined according to
the discretion of the Secretary of the Treasury. The $150,000,000
that have been issued under this law you say shall when they are
redeemed and paid into the Treasury be reissued, and they shall
remain reissued, and as often as you redeem them they shall
again be reissued and again received and again reissued and
again received, thus leaving a demand upon the Treasury of the
United States of a specific character under this bill of $150,000,000 that can be used just like you use a spigot to insert in a barrel for the purpose of drawing out the contents.
You leave it there and yet you pretend to try to convince the
common, plain-minded, simple people of the United States that
you are not trying to foist up a goldocracy in the United States,
but that you are trying to maintain the parity of silver and gold.
Will you maintain the parity of silver by locking it up in the
vaults of the United States and taxing the people to get coin to
circulate around to pay the men who want to speculate upon the
Treasury of the United States continually?
Mr. President, at the risk of wearying the Senate and the risk
of my own health I will go a little further into this matter.
The Senator from Nevada [Mr. JONES] in a speech covering
four days of time in this body has made a contribution to the literature and history and philosophy and political economy connected with the subject of silver and gold and money at large
which will illustrate the history of the United States as one of
its most beautiful chapters in all time to come. I think there is
no Senator here, and I think there is no political economist in
the United States, who would ever undertake to answer the great
argument made by the Senator from Nevada upon this subject.
But that has all gone to the winds. The people of the United
States are in a condition of turmoil and distress, and they are
not prepared to take a dispassionate view of this great question.
1 found, when he was analyzing the subject, very much to my delight, that he and I had taken similar views of a certain feature,
simply one feature of this question, about which I desire to say
something, because it is one that is not attended to usually, and
it is very important to the industrial classes of the United States.
I allude to the relations of labor to the production of the precious metals.

The money metals, gold and silver, when coined are money.
Paper promises when printed and circulated as currency are not
money, but promises to pay money. Money and credit are as
distinct as paper is distinct from gold or silver. Paper promises
are credit; gold and silver coins are money.
Money is given a fixed value in the payment of debts by legaltender laws. In all other respects the value of money is calcu687

lated only with reference to the amount or quantity it will purchase in the markets of what are called staple commodities, such
as food, drink, clothing, shelter, and medicine.
This power of money is called its purchasing power, and that
element of its power can not befixedor regulated by law. Sometimes this purchasing power of money is wildly exaggerated, or
as irrationally depressed by the lusts, passions, or follies of men.
But these exceptional departures from the ordinary admeasurements of the relative values of money and property are not considered when we compute the actual value of money as compared
with the actual or commercial value of property.
It is true, beyond candid disputation, that money and the descriptions of property that are indispensable to civilized life,
are measured, as to their selling or exchangeable value, by the
abundance of the one and the scarcity of the other in the markets where the exchange takes place—the open markets of commerce.
Money is bought and sold in the open markets, just as goods
are bought and sold. In that sense, all money is a commodity;
but of all other commodities it is a measure of value. A dollar
is sold in such markets for a bushel of wheat or for two bushels
of wheat, according to the abundance of the one or the scarcity
of the other; but the measure of the dollar and the measure of
the bushel are bothfixedby law, and are equally arbitrary. The
dollar has a value imputed to it by law and measured by law,
whether it is statute law or the law of custom, or the law of
commercial usage: but the quantity of the wheat given in exchange for the dollar is measured by agreement. The intrinsic
usefulness of the wheat creates the market, and the impulse of
necessity forces the sale. The incentive of gain or of hunger
stimulates the market, but human necessity creates it. And in
all cases the price or value of the wheat is ascertained by agreement.
Supposing the money to be sound, without which attribute it
could not be money, but would be only a token or a mere crude
commodity, the abundance of it in the market is the fact that
determines how much wheat a dollar will purchase. The law of
necessity operates first, and with the greater pressure, upon the
owner of the wheat. It is his necessities, either actual, real, or
speculative, that causes him to bring his grain for sale to the
open market. He is forced to sell it for money, because that is
the convenient or customary method of exchanging it for other
goods. He has more than he needs for consumption, and he
must sell his surplus or lose it; or he needs other things which
he can only buy with money, or he owes debts that he can only
pay with money.
These wants force him to sell his surplus wheat. His necessities are absolute and imperative. He must sell his wheat.
This situation describes the relation that every production
holds to money in every open market, and also the relation that
labor holds to money "in every human vocation. Supplies for
human consumption perish, while coin is nearly imperishable.
The necessity of sale of the leading productions of labor is allpervading and irresistible, and it is this that creates markets.
It is the offer to sell that opens the market. As a rule, almost

without exception, this offer must be made by the producer to
his disadvantage. Money, after it has supplied to its owner according to his necessities, real or imaginary, what is needed, if
any surplus is left over, becomes capital.
When the offer to sell produce or labor is addressed to capital,
as it most uniformly is, the price of the produce or labor is fixed
by the capitalist. This is always the case unless an abnormal
scarcity of productions causes money to seek investment in them.
This seldom occurs, if ever, when money is scarce. When
money is scarce the producer is forced by necessity to hunt it
up and to offer great inducements in the way of bargains to the
capitalist. The scarcity of money enables its holder always to
depress prices, even when produce is comparatively equally
scarce. This is due to the fact that money is in demand always
and for every necessity.
The demand never ceases, because it represents every human
Capital can not increase in the hands of its owner without taxing the necessities of mankind. It has no growth except through
this form of taxation. It can not grow, it can only be added to.
Interest laws, usurious contracts, and the markets are the chief
instrumentalities through which this taxation is imposed and
collected. In either form its power is irresistible, and its exactions are without limit unless the laws control and limit the
pressure of capital, the money power, upon the necessities of
mankind, and this can only be done by increasing its volume.
Capital will tax necessity to the uttermost, and to the degree of
the absolute confiscation of property unless it is restrained as to
the interest on loans, or its power is weakened or scattered by
the counteracting power of the laws in the increase and diffusion
Of its volume.
If money is scarce in the markets (and, being scarce, it is always in the hands of a small number of people), the tax upon the
necessities of the man who brings his produce or his labor to
that market is proportionally heavy. The only safety of persons thus situated against the exorbitant taxation of their necessities must be in the amount of money in the market, and In the
competition that is created by its being in the hands of numerous persons, seeking for speculative profits or .commissions or
interest or usury.
If the necessities of life and civilization compel wheat-growers
to send 100,000,000 bushels of wheat to New York for a market,
and $100,000,000 are in that market ready to be invested in wheat,
for consumption, to meet human necessities, the price of the
wheat would be $1 per bushel. If only $50,000,000 were found in
that market for the purchase of wheat, the price would be 50
cents per bushel. At a higher rate, wheat could not be sold for
cash. If the necessities of the people at large, in reach of the
New York market, were equal to the consumption of the 100,000,000 bushels of wheat, they would be so imperative and unavoidable that the wheat thus i*cornered" by the scarcity of
money or by its concentration i%&he hands of a few capitalists,
would yield them 50 per cent profit.

In the case supposed, which is illustrated, if it is not demonstrated in practical commerce, very frequently the evil to be rem67

edied is the too great scarcity of money as compared with the
productions of ths wheat-growers and with the demmds of consumers. I do not care now to enter upon any discussion of the
effect of overproduction in lowering the price of wheat in certain seasons, as is sometimes alleged, but was never true of any
great staple of food or raiment. It is enough for my purposes
that a scarcity of money in the markets, no matter how it comes
about, is a disastrous tax upon all production and all labor.
Such a scarcity of money, of legal-tender power, as compared
with the volume of the indebtedness of the people, must be totally destructive of the substance of the people and the death of
industry, enterprise, credit, and commercial morality. It would
fall like a blight upon a vast number of people, who could only
have even hope restored to them by bankrupt laws. Turning
aside from the temptation of a wider treatment of the subject,
my inquiry is addressed to the people, for it awakens no response
here. What is the duty of government in respect of the supply
of money—not promises or credits, or tokens, but money—to the
people? By money I mem coins made of the only precious metals, the only money metals now known to mankind, gold and
These are the only metals that the common opinion of mankind and the universal usages of the markets and the laws of
trade recognize as money metals. This is the one fact that can
not be denied or displaced even by the imagination. The duty
of our Government, and, indeed, of all governments, which they
everywhere obey and perform, is to coin these metals into money
and regul ite bylaw their ratio of value when coined with each
other, and to impart to them the compulsory power of legal tender in the payment of debts.
The laws of our country can go no further than this in regulating the value of money. Whatever other commercial value
these coins may have is a matter of agreement between the buyer
and seller, which is properly described as their purchasing power.
Our Government can not engage in the business of producing
these metals by digging them from the earth. That is a private employment which the people may engage in but the Government has no right or power to pursue. These metals are the
product of labor and skill, as much so as cotton, silk, wool, or
In the experience of mankind, as established through centuries and cycles, the product of a day's labor in producing these
metals is nearly equal to a pennyweight of gold or an ounce of
silver, and this fact is very influential in the admeasurement of
the ratio between them. Indeed this is the safest basis for a
ratio between gold and silver. The labor that yields an ounce
of silver will, as a rule, yield a pennyweight of grold. When
gold or silver is coined it is the conversion of labor and skill
into money by operation of law. To say that too much of this
labor can be bestowed upon the production of these metals is
absurd. It has never been true and can never be true that the
world has been or will be overstocked with the precious metals
or either of them. If the labor of the miner does not pay when
measured with the price of the products of labor in other pursuits it will cease, and when the labor stops the production of
precious metals ends.

When the petroleum wells came in the labor expended in
whale fishing ceased, or nearly so. When cotton came in the
flax culture nearly ceased; when iron ties came in the production of hempen ropes was nearly ended. But when labor ceases
to produce silver, because of its low purchasing power, there is
no substitute but gold that can take its place. Its rival—gold—
will usurp the field of consumption, but instead of supplying its
loss it wfil make its loss doubly felt among the poor, in the increase of the burden of debts and the corresponding decrease of
the prices of their labor.
The labor that produces gold and silver is bestowed on personal account and not on Government account. In the same way
labor is bestowed in the production of wheat or cotton, and so of
the capital employed in mining for precious metals. In the United
States as, indeed, in all countries except in the prison mines of
Siberia, the Government never works a mine of gold or silver on
Government account. It would reverse, if it would not revolutionize the entire theory of the Government of the United States
and of every State in the Union, to engage in the mining of gold
and silver on Government account, even upon the public lands
owned by the United States, where the mines yet undiscovered
are most likely to be found. The United States could not open
mines and work them on Government account any more than
the Congress could open and cultivate wheat farms or vineyards,
and convert the wheat into flour and the grapes into wine, on
the public domain.
The supply of gold and silver must come entirely from private
sources and not from governmental action, and the supply of
these metals can neither be increased or diminished by any
power of the law directly forbidding or limiting the production.
The supply of all other productions useful for man comes from
the same source, personal labor and personal skill, and, as the
quantity of other productions increases, and as the demand for
them is greater day by day and year by year, labor will find
profitable employment in the production of precious metals,
which when coined are the representatives in commerce of the
growth of the fruits of all other labor.
It is the labor employed in gold and silver mining and in all
other industries that is found engaging in the one pursuit or the
other, according to the profit it will yield to the laborer. The
labor shifts back and forth from the mines to the farms and factories, and increases the yield from the one employment or the
other by a law that is as common and as effectual in commerce
as the law that rules the waters of the earth in the unceasing effort to produce and maintain a common level.
There is never too much wheat. Hungry mouths are always
ready somewhere in the circuit of commercial intercourse in
the world to consume more bread than they can get. If the
price of the wheat is not remunerative, because the money to
buy it is too scarce, production is shortened, hunger increases
and the poor who labor in other industries are taxed on their
bread by corners and combinations which the scarcity of money
invites, and no law, it seems, is strong enough to prevent these
cruel exactions.
The only possible relief in the supply of real money is to permit or induce the miner to increase the supply of gold and silver


to correspond with the demands of commerce. I do not consider
that it is a real relief to such a situation to supply the deficit of
gold and silver by the issue of promises to pay money, on demand, for their redemption at some future time, and to secure
that promise by taxation of the people.
That is a temporary makeshift in which the people are to
loan their credit to the Government, or to the banks, and pay
taxes to make the credit good. If such credit is not based on
gold and silver, or upon taxation, it is a costly delusion and a
fraud which only adds to the distress of the people. It is fiat
money, which is always followed by the fiat of destruction.
Why were banks ever created by law with power to issue bills
to circulate as money if there was no need for an expansion of
currency beyond the supply of gold and silver money? Will it
be said that this was done, and this new machine for making
money was contrived for the mere purpose of greater convenience
in transporting wealth from place to place? If such had been
the purpose why did they in the very beginning of banking issue
three dollars of paper for one of gold and silver in the vaults of
the banks? Banking by the issue of paper money wasfirstpracticed in the fourteenth century in Venice, and other great commercial cities along the Mediterranean Sea.
The necessity for banks arose from no other cause than the
want of sufficient gold and silver coinage to supply the purchasing power necessary to the handling and interchange of the productions forming commerce in those marts of trade at prices
that would invite their presence there. They began as a convenience, and soon became a necessity; but banks, which are the
coiners of credit, have never been able to supplant or substitute
the powers of governments to coin money of gold and silver, and
their issues have had no par value except as they have been redeemable in coin.
A bank bill that is not redeemable in coin is branded as a
fraud the world over, and has been so condemned during all periods since they were first issued to circulate as money. Yet
their supply of currency to the commercial world became indispensable. If this substitute for money were driven from circulation in the transactions of commerce, it need scarcely be said
that it would bankrupt the commercial world. Or if either gold
or silver were removed from the foundations upon which such
issues are based, it is quite as true that the confidence of all
commercial dealers would correspondingly cease to the destruction of the business of millions of people.
Labor, then, coined into money, is the basis of all banking, as
well as the liferblood of all civil government. Labor, thus coined,
is the only money basis that has ever existed, or that can be devised; for the world of mankind will have no other basis of the
redemption of promises. Labor supplies every human want; the
metals that are, when coined, the measures of value in every human transaction that is based upon contract; and the means of
redeeming every promise, express or implied, for the payment
of money. In producing the metals that admeasure values, labor
is employed, voluntarily, either in the mining of gold or silver,
and gets its rewards from commerce.
To stop the production of either metal or to disparage it by

laws is to cut off from mankind a useful employment to the extent of the restriction so imposed upon it. This would be bad
enough if it was applied to wheat in order to give to corn or rice
a greater value, but when it is applied in its effects to the entire
mass and volume of commerce, and to every business transaction, it is a blight upon every industry and a direct tax upon
every producer.
If the restriction is upon silver in order to enhance the price
of gold, when the cooperation of both metals in supporting the
credit system called banking is never sufficient, even at the
extreme possible limit of production, the disastrous effects are
always perilous, and frequently they wreck the business and paralyze the industries of whole nations, and sometimes of half the
civilized world. Of this fact recent events are a demonstration.
This is the policy we are now pursuing; this is the scheme of the
single gold standard and coinage prescribed by the Sherman act
of 1873, and its legitimate offspring, the " cowardly makeshift"
of the Sherman act of 1890; and the present still more cowardly
makeshift in the amendatory act we are now considering under
the false and fraudulent assertion everywhere believed, that it is
a bill for the unconditional repeal of the Sherman act of 1890.
And all this is done to give the national banks a wider field for
speculation in paper credits, and the stock gamblers, brokers,
and corner ambuscaders a safer and more complete control of
all corporations, factories, mines, fields, farms, and forests; and
to aid trusts and conspiracies with the national credit, based on
the taxation of the people.
The United States Government in itsfinancialpolicy is a bank
of issue and redemption, and it also receives on deposit silver
and gold coins, for which it issues paper promises. Except in
the single matter of coining gold on the demand of one who deposits bullion, the Government is a banking institution of the
sort I have just described. The national banks have, as banks
of issue and as banks of deposit for public money, become merely
fiscal agencies, instrumentalities of the Government, which is
the mother bank.
They are a favored lot of public pets and leeches, and one is
not surprised when they " wax fat and kick."
As for their issues of bank notes as money, they have no responsibility. The Government pays them 4£ per cent interest
in quarterly payments on all the bills they issue. This is taxed
out of the people, and averages, I think, $15,000,000 each year,
and redeems their circulation when they break. A case is easily possible with these banks, that their officers, with a capital
of, say, $100,000, can invest it in United States bonds, and draw
interest on them at
per cent; they can then get a line of
deposits from th%*^people of, say, $300,000, and get $90,000 of
national-bank notes from the Government. They can steal the
whole sum and convert it into foreign exchange, send it abroad
in the form of gold or foreign exchange, and leave the Government with $390,000 less gold in the Treasury; their depositors
without a dollar of indemnity; and get away with the whole face
value of their bonds, except $10,000. That is the whole sum
that the banks put up as security for their honesty and good
faith. True, the Government gets $100,000 of its bonds, but the


thieves have pocketed $90,000 of its gold in the Treasury and
$300,000 from depositors, and have escaped with it.
This case has not happened, so far as I know, though I have
heard of such a case, it may never happen, hut none the less does
the possibility of such an occurrence show that the banking system is not sufficiently protected. The depositors have virtually
no security against peculating bank officers. Their only real security is in the honesty of the officers of the banks, which has
not very often been disproved but sometimes it has.
That many of them are well adapted to the perpetration of
even such frauds as I have shown to be possible under our illguarded system, is shown by the graphic and burning description of them which I find in the following interview of the
Senator from Indiana, in a Chicago gold-standard newspaper
of recent date. This is a bitter arraignment, that if made by
me, I could only make it at the expense of the contemptuous scorn
and villification of every great daily paper in New York. The
Senator is fortunate in the forbearance of his recent allies.
This is what the Senator says about the banks in that interview, which I suppose is correct. I think it is, as it has appeared without contradiction, so far as I have seen:

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 19.
" My full and complete opinion," said Senator VOORHEES, " of that combine of impertinent robbers and thieves, the banks of New York, it would
not be politic for you to print. Y o u couldn't get the telegraph company to
handle the message. My views of the New Y o r k banks and their methods
and their attitudes in this present debate in the Senate are that they add
insolence to robbery and slanderous lying to highwayism.
" I have been in Congress thirty-two years. Call it success or what y o u
please, its corner stone, at least, was what is m y present opinion of these
New York banks. I have ever found them plundering, marauding, and stealing the goods and hopes of the people, like so many cattle-lifting Highland
caterans. There is not an honest hair in all their heads, not a broad or
patriotic motive in all their bosoms. They are narrow, selfish, utterly mean,
and dishonest. No honest man takes his eyes off them for a moment; they
would pick his pocket if he did.
" I f you turn your back they use the assassin's knife upon you like so
many lurking, skulking, cowardly Corsicans of money. Go to your Bibles
and read what the Saviour said of the New York banks and every member of
their tribe. He described them as whited sepulchers filled with dead men's
bones, as the robber of the widow and the devourer of the orphan, as willing to barter God for money or negotiate a mortgage on their hopes of
heaven, allow a foreclosure and stay away f r o m the sale, and all for money.
44 In

the eagerness of their sharkish greed they abandon honor, and right,
and justice, and decency, and fill and gorge their bellies on the best hopes
of a wTorld. They would make a boiled dinner of the brightest prospects of
mankind. Never in my life have I been their friend nor they mine. I make
no concord, no alliance, with such criminal elements. When I took my
position for the unconditional repeal of the Sherman law purchasing clause
I had neither thought nor care for the New York banks. Neither did I regard my position as being for gold and against silver. Gold and silver and
their part in the finances of the country are not disposed of by passing the
Voorhees or the Wilson bill. Y o u repeal the silver-purchase clause of the
Sherman law, that's all you do; that's all y o u squeeze out of it. I am a silver man to-day, and a far better friend to silver than are those who obstruct
public business in the Senate.

" M y position as chairman of the Finance Committee called me to lead this
fight. I have led it honestly, fearlessly, courting no man's lavor, and I shall
lead it to the end. When the New York bankers impute or ascribe to me any
hidden motive for silver, any treachery to the measures I am assuming to
support, they are liars and foul slanderers whom I shall not hesitate to stigmatize as such. The fact that to-day both I and the New York banks desire
the same thing—the unconditional repeal of the Sherman law—need confuse
no one as to our relations. My attitude toward them is what it always was
and what it always will be to that which is corrupt and utterly venal.

is not the first time these thieves have traveled the same road with
honest men. So far as I am personally concerned they cut no more figure
in jny future than in my past. The yelping of any other pack of wolves
would be as potential in my destinies. I come from the Wabash, not from
the Hudson; from Indiana, not from New York. It is not necessary that I
be cheek by jowl with the wolves of Wall street. I return when I leave here
to my own people, not these pirates of the New York banks, and the fact
that I do not suit in my leadership the larcenous, thievish tastes of that robbers' roost will gain me warmest welcome in Indiana which a man can receive."

Yet the Senator reported, and has partly discussed, and is
ready to pass a bill through the Senate and enact it into a law to
give up Co the bank I have described, with its great temptations
to fraud, and its staff of thieves that the Senator has described,
the $10,000 reserved from its circulation.
The twin measures so far developed, as yet, by the coalition
are the amendment of the Sherman bill, so as so drive out the
silver that is not coined, whether in the Treasury or in the ores
where nature planted it, from all chance of coinage and circulation as legal-tender money, to seek a market in the jewelers'
shops or in a hostile foreign land; and at the same time to increase the powers of the national banks. This double-barreled
shot at the silver-miners should not be fired from the American
This is not fair treatment to the silver-miner who has added
so much wealth to the United States, such true support to all
other industries, and who with his predecessors has placed monuments of glowing brightness along the shining way of the entire
march of civilization, and has assisted in the work of the divine
exaltation of the human family in all its history.
It must be known to the Committee on Finance that every national-bank note issued by the Government is ultimately to be
redeemed in gold, if that is demanded by the holder.
It has been supposed to require $100,000,000 of gold in the
Treasury to protect the $346,000,000 of greenbacks that are outstanding. Mr. SHERMAN, when he was Secretary of the Treasury, bought $80,000,000 of this gold with silver certificates.
Since its purchase, in 1878 or 1879, it has cost the people in actual
taxes $60,000,000 to hold this reserve in the Treasury. How soon
will it be that we shall have to borrow two or three hundred
millions of gold to protect the $216,000,000 of greenbacks left
unprotected, to pay the bonds that secure $200,000,000 of the
national-bank notes, and the $151,000,000 of notes issued under
the Sherman law?
Whatever sums we are compelled to borrow for these purposes
will be at the constant and increasing expense of the people. The
gold will be held, as the $100,000,000 now in the Treasury is held,
as dead money on which interest must be paid. The people

must be taxed to pay it. How long it is to be thus held no man
ean foresee or even guess.
Mr. Foster and Mr. Carlisle have added the $151,000,000 of
Treasury notes issued under the Sherman law of 1890 to our gold
obligations, when they could as easily, as safely, and as honorably have placed them on the list with the silver certificates issued under the Bland-Allison act, thus increasing the gold debt
to within a small fraction of $500,000,000, at a time when the
speculators in gold were shipping it across the Atlantic, not in
reality to pay debts or to protect our credit, but to raise a clamor
against silver, in order to compel us to abandon it. It is even
said that $5,000,000 silver certificates have been paid by us in
Silver certificates are payable in silver dollars under the
statute, and the Treasury notes under the Sherman law are payable in gold or silver at the option of the Secretary of the Treasury . Nothing short of cold effrontery could ever be the attribute
of a man who would complain of receiving payment of these
Treasury notes in silver dollars and claim that his contract was
violated. If such a contract existed between private parties,
such a refusal would be considered dishonest. When it concerns
the Government and involves the taxation of the people to get
the gold to make the payment, such a refusal is an act of public
If the gold policy of the Sherman law is made absolute and inflexible by the proposed amendment of that law now under consideration, the borrowing and taxing policy must also be maintained. The Government must be constantly in active competition with our own paople to accumulate gold to protect the
Treasury, and the people must be unrelentingly taxed and the
taxes made payable in gold, to keep up the Treasury supply and
to prevent our Secretaries from placing the Treasury into voluntary bankruptcy.
The limited supply of gold must make the burden of this forced
loan crushing to the people of the United States.
This same policy must bring our people in competition with
the governments of Europe also in this world-wide scramble for
that metal. All of those governments must have gold to support their military attitude toward other neighboring powers.
Their fate depends on this turning point.
In this competitive contest for gold the hoarding of it by rival
and hostile powers must diminish the volume that remains free
to support commerce and supply the demands of the arts.
The daily labor of the workingman, which is his bread, is to
be paid with 50 cents in silver instead of a dollar in gold. The
gold is not for him, but the subsidiary silver coin must suffice
for his necessities. That is legal-tender money for ten days'
work at a dollar per day, and it is short in weight 180 grains of
silver. The labor is reduced in price to 50 cents, because gold
prices everything, and is double the value that it should be
and would be if silver was its equal before the law. Why is this?
Because gold is too scarce to buy the productions of labor at a fair
There is not enough of it to go around at a fair price for labor.
A dollar's worth of labor is priced at 50 cents. Gold is not

coined in dollars or in smaller coins, and he must accept 50 cents
in silver, which is the gold price of one dollar's worth of labor.
Thus labor is made to bear the burden of competition with our
own Government and with other governments, and with all capitalists and banks everywhere; and it is no wonder that the
prices of labor shrink as gold becomes scarcer.
But the laborer in the factory is told that with a single gold
standard all prices shrink in nearly equal proportions, and that
he can now buy as much with $1 as he could formerly buy with
$2 of all the necessaries of life. That is in some degree true;
but it is a sad truth to laborers.
The greater truth is ignored, in this exegesis of the economy
of human toil, that the recompense of every toiler, as a rule, depends upon the wages that every other laborer gets, at least in
the same country. There is that brotherhood and mutual dependence in labor, and its fruits, that causes every toiler to feel
the weight of any burden that is laid on those of every other class
Of laborers, and each dripping tear salts the whole cup.
If the slave and the free man work in adjoining fields, the
cheapness of slave labor, because it is unpaid, lowers the price
of the free labor that must be paid. It is the nonproducer
whose necessities compel him to employ labor and purchase its
fruits and who pays for them in the profits of capital, loaned or
invested in speculative ventures. It is the capitalist who, with
his interest, his usury, his exchange, and cent per cent, must
still live on the labor of other men, that supplies to labor its net
profit when there is any net profit.
The producers and nonproducers are classes almost as distinct
as the people of distant countries. Producers as a class must
be toilers, while nonproducers as a class "toil not, neither do
they spin." Necessity makes toilers of men, and the absence of
that law makes them mere consumers. If the consumers, who
must furnish the net profit to labor, can price the money in
which the producer shall be paid for his toil, the slavery of
human labor becomes as abject and servile as African slavery
ever was. The limit of its forbearance is only defined by its interests or its benevolence, in which mercy is a quality that is
very much strained.
That is exactly what this so-called repeal bill, this makeshift
of the capitalized classes and the idlers—mushrooms that spring
up on the dung heaps of human waste—inflicts upon labor. This
repeal bill prices the toil of honest working men and women to
a lower and constantly sinking limit by the increased power of
gold to tyrannize over it. When gold is the only metal money, as
it must be when silver is only a commodity and its future production is cut off by this bill, all labor will be priced in gold and
all commercial credit will be based upon it.
The supply of gold, unsupported by silver, is not enough to
furnish a compensating price to labor or production, and they
must both sink'at the will of the capitalistic classes.
This declaration is sustained by the opinions of financial and
political economists, but more conclusively by the better judgment of common sense and thefinaldemonstration of all human
experience. The owners of gold, in such a case, become the
autocrats of the credit system of banking, and that is the final


ruin of the laboring and producing classes if the alternations of
money from scarcity to plethora can ruin them.
In the United States we have now a paper currency, all of
which is redeemable by the Government, of not less, as I understand it, than six dollars in paper to one of gold, and that gold
must be borrowed money, for which we must pay heavy interest,
also in gold.
Our p iper money is kept at par only by the power of taxation.
Strike that out and our paper money would sink to 50 par cent
of its present value or less.
All our taxation is upon current industries—labor. None of
it is upon incomes or upon the issues of banks, and the tariff and
internal taxation paid by the wealthy give no relief or favors to
the producers, so that the duty of redeeming the currency and
of paying interest upon our bonds, and the bonds also when due,
is shouldered down upon the annual productions of labor.
It is therefore of vital moment to the laboring and producing
classes that the banking credit system should be under such restraints, if that is possible, that the volume of the currency
should not be under the sole control of the banks, as to its expansion and contraction. It is just at this point that the people
are handed over by our b inking laws to the mercy of the banks;
and their mercy is that of the octopus for its victim. The banks
use their money, by preference, to back up the gamblers in food
and raiment and stocks and enable them to destroy the people
with corners and combinations to raise and depress, at their own
sweet will, the selling price of every staple commodity of our
While this system exists and the people are taxed to give it
credit and power, their sufferings and apprehensions of coming
evils will continue and increase. The war provoked by these
banks may be a long one, but it will destroy them. The theory
of our Government is that the labor of the people, in our rich
fields of industry, shall furnish the basis of banking, which is
gold and silver. It is not that the Government shall furnish
this basis, either by taxation of the people or by usurping their
right to mine gold and silver and to have it coined into money.
Give to the people freely this right reserved to them in the
Constitution, to supply the precious metals for coinage at the
mints, and the bankers will not look to their taxation for these
natural and just foundations of credit, but will look to their free
and voluntary labor for this indispensable supply. The mining
laborers will then get their just reward for their toil, and our
treasures of precious metals in the mountains of the West will
not be condemned to lay useless in the mines or to expulsion to
foreign lands. In our dealings with these problems, if they are
in any proper sense problematical., our attention is first demanded by the pending legislation for the benefit of the banks
and not the relief of the people.
Even while the country is being warmed with the glow of returning prosperity arising from the confidence of the people in
themselves and their Government, that the banks have vainly
tried to destroy, they further demand haste and pressure that
threatens the Senate with compulsion and duress and Senators
with pains and penalties for obstructing the passage of this

bill. The banks and their following, seeing the ship of state
rising out of the waves in spite of their efforts to submerge it,
are eager to claim the advantage of the post hoc propter hoc
argument and to assert that they have saved the country, while
we know they have only failed to destroy it.
Pass this bill and they will treat the country to another expansion and another boom Then they will cause another contraction, when it is convenient for the gamblers in stocks and
provisions to pocket another year's labor of the people through
another depression.
This is the instability of trade that has so often shaken the
country like an earthquake, and now threatens to engulf it.
If this littlefinancialearthquake which was begun by the banks
to frighten the people into submission, which was begun as stage
thunder to alarm us into the quietude of despair, has opened a
real chasm in this forum which must be filled with a living sacrifice, let not our Marcus Curtius (of Indiana) alone fill it. Let
it be filled with a holocaust of the Democracy. The Democratic
national resolve is that the Sherman law is " a cowardly makeshift." Let us not. by clinging to the worst features of it, make
it by adoption our contemptible makeshift.
If anybody in our midst desires to climb down into the chasm
on a Republican stepladder and reconnoiter for a chance to fill
it with a sham, I am afraid that my admiration for him will not
stir in my heart the grateful sympathy that the Romans had for
their hero who, having clothed himself in his burnished armor,
mounted his brave and faithful war horse, and, thus accoutered,
leaped into the chasm, filled it with a glorious sacrifice and
closed it, saving his country.
If that legend is to be repeated and realized here, let the
Democratic party prove faithful to its heroic traditions and its
brave pledges and go headlong into the chasm. Let us all leap
together into the abyss that we have selected for our living
tomb. 1 will join hands with the old guard, and we will leave
the fatal brink of the chasm together, and bequeath our glory
and our usefulness as a legacy and a bequest to a country we
could serve in no other way.
If we promised too much to the people at Chicago, let us
not ask the Republicans to assist us in revoking the promise.
The Democratic party has decorated the entire Sherman law
with its contempt and commanded us to slay the cowardly makeshift outright. In obedience to that command I will vote for a
substitute for this bill that the Sherman law, every part of it,
shall be repealed.
If the coalition will not remain with us after the funeral, if we
go to the bottom of the chasm and they refuse to help us out, as
they will refuse, we will have the glory of having perished in a
good cause and they will thrive on what we leave as the administrators de bonis non of our estate.
In the amendment to the Sherman law, which is called " unconditional repeal" by the most audacious and mendacious abuse
of language that Satan ever adopted to cover a brazen falsehood,
there is found all that silver will ever get if it shall pass, until
the people have spoken again in a Congressional or Presidential

The proposed amendment, falsely styled "unconditional repeal," is intended to be thefinalact in the death of the silver metal.
That is the purpose of the majority of its supporters. When
they get that they will be content, and no movement for its
resurrection will be made.
The repeal of the entire bill would leave the people in a more
hopeful condition than the repeal of the first section, the purchasing clause. W e will have reached the bottom of the abyss
at one bound, and the unterrified Democracy will set to work to
climb out; whereas, if we amend the Sherman bill and adopt
the cowardly makeshift as a Democratic measure, we shall go
about the streets like the poor Jewish murderer, condemned to
bear the rotting corpse of his victim bound to his shoulders
until it has fallen to pieces, crying out, " Who shall deliver us
from this body of death."
Out and out repeal of the Sherman law is better for the cause
of silver monetization than the repeal of the purchasing clause
of that act. That amendment of this law, proposed in this bill,
leaves silver coinage, even as to the metal now in the vaults of
the Treasury, optional with the Secretary of the Treasury. That
such option will be exercised so as to leave the bullion in the
Treasury uncoined, is as certain as that the Secretaries have
not produced a coin from it in three years.
The alleged option is a false interpretation, both of the letter
and spirit of that act. It is a presumptious usurpation of the
one-man power, so odious to all right-minded Americans. The
discretionary power to coin money, or to refuse to coin it, is a
power more fatal to liberty than would be the power to declare
war or to suspend the writ of habeas corpus. The most absolute
monarch in the world would be dethroned and executed by his
subjects if he, without the advice of a council or cabinet responsible to the people, should undertake so radical a measure as it is
claimed that the Sherman law justifies.
Can Mr. Carlisle be permitted, in his discretion, to raise or
depress the market for silver, by giving it coinage as legal-tender money or by refusing it? Yet the clauses of the Sherman
law that this bill reenacts, with the construction placed upon
it by Mr. Secretary Foster and Mr. Secretary Carlisle, gives to
him, under that construction, the power to coin the bullion or
to keep it locked in the Treasury vaults. He can increase or decrease at pleasure the legal-tender money of the people. I would
leave no room in the law for a discretion in that matter. We
crown him dictator of finance, of coinage, and of the markets,
when we surrender that power into his hands.
The entire repeal of the Sherman law would be better than
the repeal of the first section and the reenactment of the remaining sections, because it would take away from the Secretary
of the Treasury the express option to redeem the notes issued
under its provisions in gold or silver. They would stand on
the same footing with greenbacks if the entire law was repealed,
and the option exercised by the Secretary of the Treasury in
redeeming them in gold or silver would be at his peril.
If he should be a candidate for the Presidency, as all Secretaries of the Treasury are either known or supposed to be, the
people could ask him why he chose to redeem in silver, and so

obtain the votes of the common people; or in gold, and so get an
election fund from the banks; and he could not reply that Congress required him to redeem the notes in the one or the other
coin, and therefore he could not redeem partly in gold and partly
in silver.
This law as it is and as this bill preserves and reenacts it.
creates a statutory competition between gold and silver coin.
When the dealer in gold wishes to raid the Treasury for a profit
or a commission, to be paid him by conspirators against the Government, the discretion vested and confirmed in the Secretary
by this amendment of the Sherman law enables him to comply
with the insolent demand rather than rebuke it with a stern refusal, when he is ready to threaten the Government with this
question: "Is the Treasury of the United States bankrupt, that
it cannot provide gold to meet my demand?"
When such a demand is made by one holding a promise payable in gold or silver coin, at the discretion of the Secretary,
his fright at such a call reminds one of the timidity of an elephant at the nibbling of a mouse. France answers such question s
with this response: " The credit of France is pledged for the
security of the Republic against the vigilance of neighboring
states that are our enemies; and is not pledged to enable you and
them to dictate to us afinancialpolicy to suit your greed and
their hostility."
A Secretary of the Treasury who had the courage to look for
a moment at the credit and resources of the United States, while
his eager and longing gaze is diverted from the vision of the
Presidency, would say, would have said, indeed, to the man
named by the Senator from Kentucky, in his great argument
delivered in the Senate on the 4tb day of this October, who had
conspired to loot the Treasury and were under foreign pay:
" Y o u will not alarm a Government as to its credit that has
paid $5,000,000,000 of debt and interest in thirty years through
your mean exploit of attempting to defame its good name by
making a corner on the gold in the Treasury. ' Get thee behind
me, Satan.' The credit of this Government is not a power in the
hands of gold or stock gamblers. Go back to your foreign employers and tell them that this splendid American Republic is
not a football to be kicked around by them at their pleasure."
Such a response would have preserved the parity between gold
and silver, while the timid submission to their insolent demands
only makes the preservation of the parity impossible.
If silver needed lifting up to preserve the parity, it was his
duty to lift it up, and not make its full legal-tender value a byword and a reproach.
If silver had been thus defended by our Secretaries of the
Treasury, every holder of an American security in Europe
would have said: " T h e United States declares for the parity of
silver coin with gold, and the hoarding of silver in the Treasury must raise its value; the supply is growing short; under
European pressure the mines are closing- Silver famine is more
likely to occur than overproduction. We will join the United
States in its wise policy of bimetallism: we will make the silver
as good as gold, and thereby lose nothing on the debts due us
and on the dividends coming to us from the vast interests we

own in their railroads. W e virtually own many of the factories,
bulks, breweries, town, city, and State bonds, mines, grazing
lands, mortgaged farms, gas works, water works, and town and
city property in the United States. We own India, and fix a
gold value for the silver rupees of those subjects, which is far
above the commercial value of the silver that they are coined
from. Why should we not be indulgent to our clients—our
former subjects—in the United States?"
They would not " kill the goose that lays the golden egg " because her wings are tipped in oxidized silver gray. When the
cowardice of the money dealer infects the Cabinet we may look
for conspiracy at home and abroad, and consequent humiliation
and distress for the people. All these dividends on stocks owned
abroad must come out of the annual earnings of the people, and
be sent abroad in gold at an enormously inflated value bsfore
the men who create them can eat the bread of their toil, or
have the flavor of profit, which must be paid to them in silver
eighteen grains short in the dollar.
Yet there are jeremiads in Presidential messages and in all
sorts of reports and speeches—sobbing lamentations—lest the
laboring man should be paid in legal-tender silver dollars. Having no gold dollars, they having been stricken from the coinage,
how is a poor man, who earns a dollar with a day's work and is
p iid. in a paper dollar, to have it redeemed in gold at the Treasury? If such arguments are not sodden in folly, they must be denounced as hypocrisy.
This amended Sherman bill, we are told, is not expected to
stand. Something better is promised. They tell us that this
''cowardly makeshift" is so great an obstruction to the keen
financial vision of the new doctors offinancethat it must be torn
down. Not demolished entirely, but left to stand as to all but the
top section, in deference, I suppose, to the bipoliticalleadership of
the coalition, one wing of which is led by a chronic gold general and the other by an oft-defeated silver marshal. When the
top section is demolished, then the grand marshal of the silver
forces will take the field for a rapid march for 4 4 the promised
land." But then, yes then, the great gold general, intrenched
behind the remaining barrier of the unrepealed sections of the
Sherman law, will say to the gallant marshalHalt! and give
the countersign. This is the citadel of the gold king and his
royal retinue, which you have agreed not to attack during this
campaign. You must not, can not advance one step.
If the grand marshal shall then sound the advance, and will permit the weary soldiers of the old guard to follow him, we will
struggle to our feet and follow 44 the forlorn hope " to victory or
to honorable graves. But it will then be too late. The surrendered bastions of the Sherman bill, left standing in their deadly
array, will repel us, and silver money will die the death.
What are we asked to look to for the restoration of the country
to a healthyfinancialcondition after we have reenacted all that
is hostile to silver in the Sherman law?

I leave this subject, Mr. President, with a knowledge that the
die is cast. The Senate, the House of Representatives, the
coalition, and the President of the United States have deter687


mined that this measure shall prevail, and we have nothing now
to look to, so far as 1 can see, but some vague promises made
upon this floor, which are entirely incapable of being realized.
The President of the United States would not have driven a
majority of the Democrats in this Chamber into this corner and
have compelled them into this unfortunate condition—where the
Senator from Ohio has exercised the power, it seems, of marking out what we shall do or what shall be done by the majority
of this body—that would not have occurred, if the President did
not have his face set against the free coinage of silver. I regret
it very much, but I do not deceive myself that the President of
the United States has made a formal declaration, emphatic and,
of course, irrevocable, I am afraid, that there is to be no free
coinage of silver in this country, and no approximation to it,
until we have first secured the ? ssent of foreign powers.
I am utterly hopeless in that direction. I think it is a matter
impossible of accomplishment. I do not believe that the form
and theory of our Government is at all adapted to making any
such obligations binding upon our people, or binding upon foreign countries. I had the honor and the pleasure of discussing
this question with the Senator from Iowa [Mr. ALLISON], who is
a very able and a very candid man, and I think the result of the
brief debate was to satisfy the Senate that it was a matter of legislative impracticability—impossibility, I will say—that we could
formulate an agreement with foreign countries in respect of our
currency which should be binding upon them and binding upon
us. The subject is as indefinite in the future, so far as we know,
as the millennium, and I have not the slightest hope of it nor the
slightest confidence in it. It may do for a foil; it may do for a
measure of amusement; it may do to flatter the people with the
idea that something is to be done for their benefit: but the result
will never be reached.
In one respect, Mr. President, we have a people to be admired,
to be loved, to be reverenced as a man would reverence an honest
and sweet woman who was his wife—it is the confidence and the
faith and the abiding trust the people have in the men whom
they elect to represent them in the high offices of the country.
They seem to be willing to endure almost any thing with patience,
and the least indication of a promise of relief that we hold out
to them will cause them to endure pains and mortifications and
distresses which would wring anguish and denunciation from
any other people in the world—not denunciations of violence,
for they will bear them with fortitude, patience, and submission,
trusting in God and in their leaders that all will come right at
They refuse no confidence to their representatives and no
sacrifices to their country.
Such a people, Mr. President, deserve at our hands an equal
recognition of duty and devotion on our part, and we should be
tender of their rights, and when the powers we undertake to exercise appear to be in conflict with rights reserved to them under
the Constitution of their country, we ought to be very cautious
and go very slow in interfering with them.
Now, here we are, the Democratic party in this body, according to all the declarations which have been made, particularly


those of the Senator from Maryland [Mr. GORMAN], knowingly
violating the seventh article of the Chicago platform, which
contained pledges to the people of the United States which they
translated as sacred promises and which they believed to be
honorable pledges for the full remonetization of silver. That is
what they believed. W e are disappointing all of them, and wa
are creating trepidation, anguish, and resentment, and after
awhile we shall create rebellion amongst those people toward
our authority; they will dispute our friendship for them, they
will commence branding us as traitors to their cause, and men
who have tried to serve them honestly and faithfully will be
crushed under the fe.etof the multitude who will rush for redress
when thejr find that their leaders have deceived them.
I lament all this. I feel it very deeply. My attitude is this:
The Democratic party is to-day what it was in the days of Gen.
Jackson. I see no difference in it. If there is any motive or
any power or any principle in the Democratic party which was
opposed to the creed of the pure Democrats who supported that
faithful and great man and his successors and his predecessors
in his office, then, Mr. President, I am out of place in the Democratic party; but I believe that the power still resides with that
party which honors the rights of the people under the Constitution of the United States with a sincere respect, to bring them
again into the full possession of all their constitutional rights,
and there is no constitutional right that I can think of which
ought to be prized more than that which enables the people of
the United States by their labor in the mines, which God has
bestowed upon them, to bring forth the precious metals and go
to the mints of the country and have those metals converted
into coin.
I leave this subject, Mr. President, not expecting for a long
time, if ever, to have anything: else to say upon it until the people shall take it up and dispose of it according to their sovereign
will. I shall yield to that judgment when it is rendered, and to
nothing else. *