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Saturday, August 19,1898.
The House haying 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. CLARK of Missouri said:
Mr. SPEAKER: TO demonetize or not to demonetize silver is
the question that now confronts us. We might as well recognize
the truth and look it squarely in the face. There is no good to
come of beating about the bush. There is no sense in whipping
the devil around the stump.
No subterfuge, no sophistry can delude the people on this momentous subject. The issue is squarely joined. There is, there
can b3, no misunderstanding about it. From utterances, public
and private, here, from articles in current m igazines and periodicals, we know that it is the remorseless purpose of a minority
of this House to utterly destroy silver as a money metal, while
a majority of us are determined to restore it to its place of
ancient honor, usefulness, and beneficence in the coinage of the
country. [Applause.]
There can be no straddling, no dodging, no foraging between
the lines, and no fence riding in this fierce contest.
He who is not with us is against us. [Applause.]
The newspapers say that the monometallists have hoisted the
black 0. ag and will give no quarter. Be it so. We double-standard Democrats, knowing that we are standing on the Democratic
platform, and ail of it—not on one sentence wrenched from its
context—and realizing that our cause is righteous, propose to
faithfully and steadfastly represent the people who sent us
The Western Democracy says to the legions of the single gold
Come one! come all! This rock shall fly
From itsfirmbase as soon as I.
To demonetize silver is practically to confiscate one-half of all
the property in the United States; to double the difficulty of
every debtor in the land to meet his obligations: to cause stagnation in every branch of business except clipping nontaxable
gold coupons off of nontaxable gold bonds; to carry ruin, pauperism and misery into one-half the homes between the two
oceans. Then shall be fulfilled that scripture which s lys:
Whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.


I will quote to you words stronger than any my tongue can
fashion—words from a man whom from my youth up I had regarded as an ideal statesman—a man whose genius and eloquence
to a large extent educated the people of this country into a
thorough detestation of the high protective tariff system—a man
whose speeches have been used as a text-book to win voters to
correct political opinions—a man whom millions of his fellowcitizens had fondly hoped to see President of the Republic—Hon.
John Griffin Carlisle, now Secretary of the Treasury. In 1878.
when a Representative in Congress, on this floor, on the question of demonetizing silver, he used this remarkably vigorous
According to my view of the subject, the conspiracy which seems to have
been formed here and in Europe to destroy by legislation and otherwise
from three-sevenths to one-half of the* metallic money of the world is the
most gigantic crime of this or any other age. The consummation of such a
scheme would ultimately entail more misery upon the human race than all
the wars, pestilence, and famine that ever occurred in the history of the
world. The absolute and instantaneous destruction of half the entire movable property of the world, including houses, ships, railroads, and all other
appliances for carrying on commerce, while it would be felt more sensibly
at the same moment, would not produce anything like the prolonged distress
and disorganization of society that must inevitably result from the permanent annihilation of one-half of the metallic money in the world.
Those were words fitly spoken, and are like apples of gold in
pictures of silver. When a monument is erected to his memory
there should be inscribed upon it that prophetic utterance as his
noblest epitaph.
Shakespeare says:
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw a perfume on the violet.
To smooth the ice. or add another hue
Unto the rainbow, or with taper-light
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to gamish.
Is wasteful and ridiculous excess.
And really to undertake to add anything to the forceful and
truthful words of the great Kentuckian is a work of supererogation. They sank deep into the minds of the Western and Southwestern people, and have contributed largely to give hearts of
oak to those who under all vicissitudes have loyally fought under
the double standard bequeathed to us by the Fathers of the Republic as a portion of our priceless heritage. The people—oh,
the people! have wonderful memories, and they still fondly cherish those words as containing a truth of portentous import.

I am a Democrat. I stand by the platform—by all of it—by
every jot and tittle of it; because I believed in it with my whole
heart when it was made and I believe in it with my whole heart
now. It contains the Democratic gospel pure and undefiled.
Over no political utterance did I ever rejoice more than over that,
because it was not a Janus-faced, double-dealing, good Lord,
good devil, all things to all men sort of document, but was a clear,
bold, honest, manly, masterful, comprehensive declaration of
Democratic faith. From a hundred rostrums, in the presence of
high Heaven and thousands of intelligent, law-abiding, industrious, God-fearing, patriotic people, I pledged myself to stand by
it here, and, come what may, I am going to keep my word.
The main planks in that platform are tariff for revenue only

and bimetallism, in all which those terms imply. It means that,
or the English language has no significance whatsoever. It
promised the people unlimited coinage of both silver and gold.
Mr. TRACEY. Not in the platform.
Mr. CLARK of Missouri. Yes, sir.
Mr. TRACEY. No, sir.
Mr. CLARK of Missouri. And that they shall have, if my
vote will give it to them. [Loud applause.]
Mr. LANE. We will join you.
Mr. CLARK of Missouri. Mr. Speaker, it is an old saying that
all things are fair in love or war, and some people appear to believe that anything is fair in politics. I dissent in toto from any
such immoral doctrine. The people have aright to honest treatment at the hands of those who aspire to be their agents in public affairs, and to the man who betrays them they will send the
silken bowstring1 for his own destruction. [Loud applause.] It
is my solemn conviction that the man who will deceive the people
to obtain an office will desert them when in office.
I reiterate the proposition—and it can not be repeated too
often—that the Chicago platform proclaimed to all the world
that we are in favor of cutting the tariff to a strictly revenue
basis, and in favor of bimetallism; and let me tell the single gold
standard Democrats that if the people west of the Alleghenies
had not believed that both of those things would come about
there would now be no Democratic Congress to pass a money
bill and no Democratic President to sign one. [Loud applause.]
The people knew what they wanted, and they thought they
knew what they were getting. [Laughter and applause.] Shall
they have it, or shall they not?
Will we redeem the solemn pledges made by tongue and pen
to the people and be considered their benefactors for ever, or
will we violate our vows and have pronounced upon our heads
their anathema maranatha ? Will we restore happiness and
prosperity to the land and read our history in the nation's eyes,
or will we be the instruments in creating universal bankruptcy
among the people who have committed to our hands a sacred
These questions I press home upon the mind, heart, and conscience of every Democrat upon this floor.
An illustrious statesman once said, and I commend the wisdom
of his words to all men of all parties: " You can fool part of the
people all the time; you can fool all the people part of the time;
but you can't fool all the people all the time."
The seventh section of the Chicago platform verbatim runs in
these words:
We denounce the Republican legislation known ae 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 bvsuch
safeguards of legislation as shall 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 a
fluctuating currency.

That is the last authoritative Democratic utterance on the subject of finance, and it appears to me to mark out a path so plain
that even the wayfaring man, though a fool, can not err therein.
That is the platform; and what is a platform any way? Is it
an honest declaration of principles which the framers honestly
intend to enact into laws'if they attain to power, or is it a dishonest device whereby to entrap the unwary voter ? Is it a
candid statement of the faith that is in us, or is it a bait to catch
Is it the plighted word of men of honor to accomplish certain
things, or is it only "A good-enough Morgan " till after election, which palters with the people in a double sense—which
" keeps the word of promise to the ear and breaks it to the
If the former, then Democrats are thoroughly committed to
the same treatment for both silver and gold; if the latter, may
God have mercy on us, for a duped and outraged people will not.
When going into the battle of Trafalgar, which was to establish his country's supremacy upon the seas, which was destined
to write his name high up on the roll of English-speakingheroes,
and which was to witness his own tragic but glorious death,
Horatio Nelson, the most puissant spirit that ever rode the
watery main, signaled his fleet, "This day England expects
every man to do his duty/' The world knows the result. As
we go into this great financial Trafalgar, the producing sections
of this land, bleeding at every pore from stabs of poisoned, protected stilettos, signal Congress, " This day America expects
every Representative to do his duty." [Applause.]
If we do we will win such a victory for the prosperity and the
happiness of the human ri ce as has not been won since John
Sobieski defeated the Turks under the walls of Vienna, and
thereby saved this world from the baleful and heartless domination of the Mohammedans. [Applause.]
All this talk about the Democratic party going to pieces on
the financial rock makes a lover of his country sick at heart.
With the whole force of my being I believe that it will live
up to its promises and redeem its pledges. " Our friends, the
enemy," need not lay the flattering unction to their souls that it
is about to commit suicide by splitting into two warring factions.
It can not, it must not, it will not. [AppLuse.] It is the great
bulwark of civil liberty, and the only hope of constitutional government on the whole face of the earth. In its early days it
drank at the fountain of perpetual youth; it will be living in pristine vigor when the youngestof us shall have moldered into dust,
and it is destined, under God, to yet give the people centuries of
honest, benignant, intelligent, and patriotic tdministration.

The gentleman from Maryland [Mr. RAYNER], who led the advance guard of the single gold-standard cohorts, seems to be harboring the delusion that nobody is interested in silver coinage
except the silver-producers of the Bocky Mountain States and
Territories. He might as well disabuse his mind of that hallucination at once and forever.
Missouri is an imperial Commonwealth. She is one of the
greatest agricultural States ever formed by the hand of God.

So far as is now known, she has not a paying gold or silver mine
within her borders.
These are about the only good things with which she is not
bountifully provided. [Laughter.] But she has what is far better
than gold and silver mines. She has 68,500 square miles of land,
the richest under heaven—on the surface rich in soil and beneath the surface rich in coal, marble, onyx, building stone, and
all the baser useful metals. She produces in profusion wheat, oats,
corn, cotton, pork, beef, mutton, fruit, and other commodities,
which she exchanges for gold and silver, and her people want silver coinage for the following reasons: With all her accumulated
wealth and her incalculable natural resources, she is still a debtor
State. Her people believe that silver is one of the money metals
of the Constitution; they believe that the experience of four
thousand years has demonstrated it to be good money [applause];
they believe that it was corruptly and wickedly demonetized in
Having contracted debts under the double standard, they
claim that they have the indefeasible right to pay them under
the same standard; they deem it nothing short of robbery committed under the forms of law to have them doubled by act of
Congress; they say that when they have mortgaged a farm for
$5,000 to some Eastern company, their chosen servants have no
right by hostile legislation to practically raise the mortgage to
$10,000 [applause]; they believe that the financial paralysis and
terror from which the country is now suffering have been produced by the twin evils of the high protective tariff and the
constant contraction of the currency; and they declare that the
clock has struck the hour when Congress should cease to legislate exclusively for what Mr. Blaine, for some unaccountable reason, denominates the nine industrial States. [Applause.]

The gentleman from Maryland [Mr. RAYNER], in his impassioned address the other day, declared that our contention that
gold and silver are the money of the Constitution is an argument constantly addressed to the ignorance of the country.
That is certainly a refreshing sort of statement. It appears to
me that somewhere I have heard before of persons who exploited their superiority over the remainder of mankind, and
who stood on the street corners rolling their eyes to heaven and
thanking God they were not as other people. [Laughter.]
There are unquestionably a great many wise men in the East.
That proposition can not be gainsaid; for Solomon lived
there; Socrates lived there; Cato lived there; Lord Bacon lived
there; and the gentleman from Maryland lives there. [Laughter.] But I beg leave to observe that living in the East and
being in favor of a single gold standard do not necessarily make
a man wise any more than living in the South or West and being
in favor of the double standard prove his ignorance. The gentleman's assumption is a gratuitous insult to a majority of his
fellow citizens.
I apprehend that if the gentleman from Maryland will pay a
visit to the Mississippi Vallev and extend his journey to the
home of my friend from Colorado he will change his opinion
somewhat touching the question of intelligence while he is
wearing off his character of a tenderfoot. [Laughter.]

There is no imminent danger that wisdom will die with the
men from the East. [Laughter.]
In his Commentaries, Caesar divided all Gaul into three parts.
If the imperial historian were alive and could witness the scenes
enacted here, especially the airs of superior wisdom and honesty
assumed by some of the gentlemen on the other side, he would
change his text so as to read: "All gall is in one concentrated
nd among the single gold
he chief industry of the
East came to be lending money the wisdom of the East was on our
side, and that until the senior Senator from Ohio took a trip to
Europe in 1867 every great statesman of this country, even in
the East, had been a bimetallism [Applause.]
It was one of the very few propositions ever agreed upon by
Alexander Hamilton, the grandfather of the Republican party,
and Thomas Jefferson, the chief priest, prophet, and apostle of
constitutional liberty.
Let gentlemen think of that. It must furnish the gold-standard men ample food for reflection and give them pause. Whatever else may be said of Alexander Hamilton, he had more brains
and more, courage than any other man who ever fought democracy on this continent, and Thomas Jefferson possessed one of
the most exquisite brains ever housed in a human skull. [Aplause.] Anything political advocated by the great Virginian
am willing to swear by now. [Applause.] Hamilton recommended, in his celebrated report to Congress, that the unit of
value should rest on both silver and gold, and gave his reason in
these words:
To annul the use of either of the metals as money is to abridge the quantity of the circulating medium, and is liable to all the objections which arise
from a comparison of the benefits of a full with the evils of a scanty drcula-


He submitted the report to Jefferson, and that immortal statesman indorsed it in these words: " I return you the report on the
mint. I concur with you that the unit must stand on both
Hamilton, who was the original aristocrat in America—who
advocated a vote based on property because the rich had, according to his view, the largest stake in the Government—he who
furnished Republicans with their theories, their political chart
and compass, and Thomas Jefferson, the father of Democracy,
who looms up against the sky of history as the typical American President, who was the profoundest original thinker that
ever devoted his life to statesmanship, who plowed his name
deeper into the hearts and his political ideas deeper into the
minds of men than any other man of whom history has preserved an authentic record—these men, antagonists, competitors, and enemies in their lives; antagonists, competitors, and
enemies in history and even in their graves—they agreed that gold
and silver both should constitute the unit of our coinage. It
must have been plain indeed to induce those two bitter rivals
and good haters to agree. An ignorant man—or even the distinguished scholar from Maryland—is in pretty good intellectual
company when with Thomas Jefferson, to say nothing of Alexander Hamilton. [Applause.]
Aye, more. I state here and now, without the fear of success-

ful contradiction, that ufttil unhallowed greed combined with
prostituted ingenuity to discover new ways of despoiling the
many for the benefit of the few, no great financier "of any age
or clime can be named who seriously advocated a single standard,
while on our side the roll call includes all the eminent political
economists who ever lived. [Applause.]
Even Ernest Seyd repented of his sins and lived to become a
bimetallism, but his disciples on this side the water, like Ephraim,
are joined to their idol, and still stand by his discarded theory—
which is only another illustration of the truth that—
T h e evil t h a t m e n do lives after t h e m ; the good is oft interred w i t h their


The gentleman from Ohio [Mr. HARTER] likens our Uncle
Samuel to a patient suffering from alcoholism, and prescribes
the Gold Cure. That he is very sick is true, but Dr. Harter
makes an incorrect diagnosis. He is suffering not from delirium
tremens, but from aenemia—from poverty of the blood—from inanition—from alack of the circulating medium. The gentleman's
remedy for our uncle, who has been bled almost to death by the
Shylocks for their pound of flesh, is to still further deplete the
tottering and enfeebled old man by more bleeding. Like the
horse leech's daughter, he still cries in the dull ears of the illustrious sufferer: "Give! Give!" [Laughter.] He turns to the
attending physicians and commands: "Whet your lance and
plunge it into the old man's jugular vein!"
What this country needs is not Dr. Harter's Iron Tonic, but
Dr. Bland's Silver Cordial. [Applause.]

The gentleman from New York [Mr. HENDRIX], who acknowledges that he is a Missourian by nativity, who is fortunate
enough to be the president of a national bank, and who came to
Congress by way of the East, draws a soul-harrowing and tearcompelling picture of the long-suffering and patriotic New York
bankers standing in the breach after the manner of Leonidas at
Thermopylae and "holding up the financial system of the country
by the neck." [Laughter.]
That is certainly a spectacle for men and angels.
The trouble is that they have had the business of the country
by the neck until they have choked the breath of life out of its
body [applause and laughter] and until the consuming desire of
the great mass of the people is to break that same neck hold of
Wall street. [Applause].
Speaking as one having authority, he curtly informs those
who have the temerity to differ with him that they are advocating "infernal rot," "gibbering idiocy," "rank, staring, stark
insanity," and " the height of midsummer madness."
These are rather harsh charges to prefer against the representatives of great constituencies sent to this Hall to legislate
for a free people because they have the courage and fidelity to
stand here and contend for their rights, Lombard street, Wall
street and "the old lady of Threadneedle street "to the contrary notwithstanding. [Applause.]
He repeatedly told us that the monetary evolutionary processes
which God set in motion had evoluted every civilized nation except ours into the single gold standard, and would in a few days

©volute us into the same condition of ineffable felicity. [Laughter.]
Now, I never was much of an evolutionist, and Lave always
preferred Moses to Darwin: but after listening to the gentleman's speech, I believe more firmly in the Pentateuch than
ever—for if the summum bonum—the chef-d'oeuvre—the ultimate result—th© highest product of all the evolutionary process is a Wall street gold bug, then the evolutionary process has
been of little benefit to the human race. [Great laughter.]
According to his rather curious theory God Almighty—and
not the Sherman law—is responsible for the condition that involves the globe to-day and is therefore presumably in favor of
the gold standard.
I have in my time witnessed divers attempts to unload many
of the errors, sins, and follies of men upon the Creator; but to
ask rational beings to believe that He is the author of the direful
calamities now oppressing mankind, and that he is sponsor for
the single gold standard is certainly taxing human credulity to
its utmost Umit. [Applause.] In the absence of a revelation on
the subject, and considering all the circumstantial evidence in
the case, it looks as though He were on our side; because He is
always on the right side. [Applause.] And because in the beginning, in His infinite wisdom, He so distributed the precious metals
throughout the world that after six thousand years of ceaseless human endeavor the quantities of gold and silver in circulation are
almost precisely the same. [Applause.] Is that a mere accident?
or was not the omnipotent finger of Almighty God visible in it from
the first? There is, there can be, but one answer. He created
man and woman to go in pairs, and bade them 4 4 Go forth, be fruitful, multiply and replenish the earth." With alacrity has that
command been obeyed. [Laughter.] He also created silver and
gold to go in pairs, and sent them forth on the mission of propagating, multiplying, and replenishing the business of the world.
Nobly have they discharged that duty, and of them, as of the bride
and bridegroom at the marriage altar, may it be appropriately
said: "Whom God hath joined together, letno man put asunder.'"
But we are dogmatically told that these met als which have been
the faithful servants of humanity from a time whereof the memory
of man runneth not to the contrary must now, after being lawfully wedded for sixty centuries, be divorced at the behest of
England, the bully and freebooter among the nations of the earth.
I beg gentlemen to remember that just so certainly as our
mania for divorce between husband and wife is sapping the foundations of our social and moral fabric, just so surely will the divorce of gold and silver sap the foundations of our business fabric and cause th© temple of our prosperity to topple to the dust.
The gentleman assumes the role of prophet, ana exhibits to us
the happiness and glory in store for us if we vote with him, and
the infamy and e.xecration to which we are heirs if we vote as
our constituents desire us to vote. Indeed, all the gentlemen on
that side of the question indulge liberally in prophecies. They
call to mind what Charles Dickens says of David Copperfield s
sitting night after night under the gallery of the House of Commons, " recording predictions that never came to pass, prophecies that were never fulfilled, and explanations that were only
meant to mystify." [Laughter.]

He tells us that the panic was brought about, not by reason of
the Sherman law, but because the Anglo-Saxon race has overdone the business of production. But he offered no remedy for
the evil. The Anglo-Saxons are an industrious, ambitious, thrifty
stock: but what would he have them do—stop the plow in the
furrow, the sickle in the swath, and the mill in its grinding?
That is decidedly rough on people who want to work, who know
how to work, and who find their chief delight in work in the
sweet hope of making pleasant the lives of their children.
But if the panic in the United States is chargeable to the overproduction of Anglo-Saxons, how does i t h ippen that it came on
first in the South American republics, where few Anglo-Saxons
find an abiding place, and where Spanish-Americans constitute
the bulk of the population?
He draws a graphic picture of how the money kings of Lombard street in London will jeer and hoot at us when they
read of the four proposed ratios and what he is pleased to
term the omnibus in which all C:in ride. Let them jeer and hoot
till the crack of doom. I thank God my allegiance is not to the
money changers of Lombird street, but to one hundred and
seventy-eight thousand toiling freemen in the great State of
Missouri. [Applause.]
He professes himself an international bimetallism and wants
silver coinage postponed to a more convenient season, ignoring
the fact that hope deferred maketh the heart sick. He desires
us to wait and follow England, France, Germany, Russia, Austria-Hungary, Italy, Spain, Holland, Portugal, Switzerland, and
all other countries; that is to say, that America, the richest
nation under the sun, producing 28 per cent of all the gold and
41 per cent of all the silver of the world, shall patiently and
meekly wait, cap in hand, till every eight by ten kingdom and
principality in Europe shall give her permission to lift up her
lusty voice in the business affairs on which the happiness and
prosperity of all her people depend. The masses of the United
States—the men who produce the wealth and not the men who
grow rich by levying tolls from wealth passing through their
hands—do not love the practices or the practitioners of Lombard street.
The day has surely come at last when this Republic should
lead and not follow in the procession of the nations, and if that
day has not already dawned may God speed it in its coming.
More than one hundred and seventeen years ago this country,
then a feeble infant, declared its political independence of all
the world, and some people have the audacity to believe that
she, having grown to colossal proportions, should declare her
financial independence and be free indeed. [Applause.]
And suppose that we completely remonetize and rehabilitate
silver ana England cuts our commercial acquaintance—what
then? It would inevitably give us control of the commerce of
every silver-using country on the globe—France, India, China,
Mexico, the Central American States, and the Republics of South
Americ i—which would more than compensate us for the English
trade. [Applause.]
Gentlemen t-dk as though Europe bought our wheat, corn,
pork, cotton, and beef because they love us. That is not true.
They are hungry and they must eat. They are naked and must
be clothed. That is the reason they buy our stuff. [Applause.]

The gentleman lauds Thomas H. Benton for facing his own
party on a question of ratios in 1834, and prays for some other
man to rise up in the Mississippi Valley and make himself great
by imitating the heroic example of "Old Bullion." Thomas H.
Benton was agreat man and formed one of the quadrilateral of the
greatest statesmen who have at any one time appeared together
in the Senate of the United States. His splendid fame constitutes one of the most valued treasures of Missouri and of the Republic. I hope some day to see his effigy in Statuary Hall, but
it is not advisable for Representatives here to follow blindly his
example in all things, unless they would enter the pathway
which leads to political death.
Virgil s^ys, Facilis descensus aoemo—easy the road to destruction—and so the haughty, belligerent, imperious Benton found
it to his everlasting undoing. The awful catastrophe of his career should be a warning to all who hear me this moment. In
an hour fatal to his success he peremptorily refused to obey the
instructions of the Missouri Legislature as to his vote on a certain vital measure pending in Congress, and he fell, like Lucifer,
never to heme again. I have no sort of doubt that if the departed dead take cognizance of the affairs of this lower world,
and Benton could speak to us this day, his advice to Representatives would b e , " Stand by your constituents—vox populi, vox
Dei—the voice of the people is the voice of God." [Applause.]
This panic is a monstrous crime against the prosperity and
happiness of the American people. [Applause.] It is purely
fictitious—absolutely without foundation, except for the insatiable greed of the men who have planned and manipulated it to
fill their coffers with ill-gotten gains. They have overdone the
thing. They wanted a scare and squeeze to accomplish their
nefarious purposes; but they did not want it to assume its present proportions. They started it, but they could not guide it.
They sowed the wind, and they are reaping the whirlwind. They
have realized the truth of the old dictum that wicked inventions
sometimes return to plague the inventors. They are in the condition of the philosopher who took a few pieces of wood, leather,
and iron and made him a devil, and after he had made him discovered that the devil controlled him, instead of his controlling
the devil. [Laughter.]

The people of the West want silver money at the old ratio of
16 to 1 [applause], because they want more money; and they
want more money because they need it in their business and in
the development of their illimitable resources.
There is not enough gold in the world to furnish money enough
for its necessities. Everybody admits that. You must use silver or some substitute. You can not get around it.
All the political economists are agreed that the prosperous
condition of a country is where the volume of currency is gradually increasing, and that where the volume of money is either
stationary or decreasing, business stagnates and the wheels of
progress cease to revolve.
David Hume puts it this way:
It is certain that since the discovery of the mines in America industry
has increased in all the nations of Europe. « • • We find that in every
kingdom into which money begins to flow in greater abundance than formerly, everything takes a new face; labor and industry gain life, the mer62

chant becomes more enterprising, the manufacturer more diligent and
skillful, and even the farmer follows his plow with more alacrity and attention. * * * It is of no manner of consequence with regard to the
domestic happiness of a state whether money be in greater or less quantity.
The good policy of the magistrate consists only in keeping it, if possible,
still increasing; because by that means he keeps alive a spirit ofjindustry
in the nation and increases the stock of labor, in which consists all real
power and rtches. A nation whose money decreases is actually at that
time weaker and more miserable than another nation which possesses no
more money, but is on the increasing hand.
William H. Crawford, Secretary of the Treasury, in a report
to Congress, dated February 12,1820, says:
All intelligent writers on currency agree that when it is decreasing in
amount, poverty and misery must prevail.
Mr. R. M. T. Hunter, in a report to the United States Senate
in 1852, says:
Of all the great effects produced upon human society by the discovery of
America, there were probably none so marked as those brought about by
the great influx of the precious metals from the New World to the Old. European industry had been declining under the decreasing stock of the precious metals and an appreciating standard of values; human ingenuity grew
dull tinder the paralyzing influences of declining profits, and capital absorbed nearly all that should have been divided between it and labor.
But an increase of the precious metals, in such quantity as to check this
tendency, operated as anew motive power to the machinery of commerce.
Production was stimulated by finding the advantages of a change in the
standard on its side. Instead of being repressed by having to pay more than
it stipulated for the use of capital, it was stimulated by paying less. Capital, too, was benefited, for new demands were created for it by the new
uses which a general movement in industrial pursuits had developed; so if
it lost a little D the change in the standard, it gained much more in the
greater demand for its use, which added to its capacity for reproduction and
to its real value.
The mischief would be great, indeed, if all the world were to adopt but
one of the precious metals as the standard of value. To adopt gold alone
would diminish the specie currency more than one-half; and the reduction
the other way, should silver be taken as the only standard, would be large
enough to prove highly disastrous to the human race.
I could pile up authorities for a week; but they are all to the
same effect and these must suffice.
Why will we not accept the conclusions of men who have
probed financial problems to the bottom? It is said that experience is a dear school, but that fools will learn in no other.
Gentlemen on the other side admit that there is not enough
money in the country, for they rejoice with us that gold is now
returning to this country; they try to make us believe that the
annual output of gold available for coinage is constantly increasing, and they ask us to join them in passing a law authorizing the
national banks to issue bills up to the full limit of the par value
of the bonds on deposit.
The first source of increase which they suggest—the return of
gold from abroad—may or may not be permanent; the second
source of increase, the growing annual output of goid available
for coinage, is without basis of fact, as conclusively demonstrated
by the gentleman from Utah last Saturday; and as to the third
source of increase—the leave to the national banks to issue more
bills—we are not particularly enamored of the idea of placing
ourselves absolutely at the mercy of the national banks and givthem power to expand and contract the volume of the currency
at will. [Applause.]
And at best this proffered increase of the national bank circulation is a delusion and a snare, because it is a historic fact
known of all men that they will not issue notes up to the 90 per
cent limit as they can now do under the present law.

These gentlemen stand here day after day and assert that nobody wants silver money, and that nobody will have it. Nothing
could be further from the truth. The people take it; the people
use it; the people love it. All that ever was the matter with
silver is that people could not get enough of it. [Applause.]
A silver dollar will buy as much of the necessaries or luxuries
of life as a gold or paper dollar, and if it had been fairly treated
by the Secretaries of the Treasury it would be this day at
par, and even above par, as it was in 1873. Give us unlimited
coinage of silver even at the old ratio of 16 to 1 and it will at
once jump to its old position, side by side with gold. If
France, with a much smaller population, territory, and business than we have, can sustain and uphold seven hundred millions in silver at the ratio of 151 to 1, certainly, with our growing population, with our expanding business, with our undeveloped territory, we can maintain at the ratio of 16 to 1 all the
silver we are likely to have.

The history of silver can be briefly told. From the days when
Abraham fed his flocks and herds on the plains of Palestine gold
and silver both had been the money of commerce and of civilization until 1873, when the silver dollar was surreptitiously struck
from the coinage of the country by legislative legerdemain, by a
Machiavellian trick, by a confidence game that would put to
blush the boldest three-card monte man upon the plains, by a
species of juggling that would cause the most expert Japanese
artist to turn green with envy. [Laughter.]
From that day to this there has been nothing but trouble, turmoil, vexation of spirit, crimination and recrimination on the
money question. There never will be until the people get their
That was the most astounding piece of legislation ever enacted in any civilized country since the morning stars first sang
together. So far as can now be ascertained, nobody demanded it,
and only a small and select coterie knew that the silver dollar
was demonetized until some months after the fell deed had been
accomplished. Such men as Allen G. Thurman, James G.
Blaine, W I L L I A M M. STEWART, James A. Garfield, D A N I E L W .
VOORHEES, William D. Kelley, Ulysses S. Grant, and others of
high character, must be believed when they solemnly asseverate
thtt they did not know that that infamous bill, with the innocent title of "Regulating the Mint," struck down one-half the
money of the world.
To this day no man has ever given a cogent or satisfactory reason for that unparalleled act of confiscation—for that is precisely what it was—bald, heartless, wicked confiscation; for, let
it never be forgotten that at the identical moment when that bill
was passed the silver bullion in a silver dollar was worth 103
cents in gold. [Applause.]
It was not a " dishonest dollar " then, it was not a " fiat dollar "
then it was not a "60-cent dollar" then, as the gentlemen
claim it is now. Pass a law to put it back where the conspirators
of 1873 found it, and it will rise to par again, and constitute the
mainstay of the Government and the people in every crisis of
their fate.
True, silver has apparently gone down since then, but every62

thing else that our farmers have to sell has gone down with it,
In 1872 wheat sold at $1.47 per bushel, and now it sells at about
50 cents per bushel. And the following table tells the remainder
of the sad, sad story:

Wheat. Cotton. Silver.'


9.9 1.12
11.5 1.14
11.4 1.13
11.4 1.13


Wheat. Cotton. Silver.









All other farm products have gone down in about the same
proportion. Whatever the farmer has sold he had to sell in the
open markets of the world in competition with the pauper labor
of Europe, Asia, Africa, and the islands of the sea, and whatever
he bought he was compelled to buy at prices fixed at abnormally
high figures by our stake-and-rider tariff. No wonder he is discontented, disconsolate, and determined to find a remedy.
But, as a matter of truth, has silver actually fallen, or has gold
been forced up to a premium by skillful manipulation? Unquestionably it is the latter, for every product of farm, mine, shop,
or factory that has been unaided by friendly class legislation has
kept pace with silver, and the bullion in a silver dollar will purchase as much of almost anything as it would when it was dishonored in 1873.
The gentleman from Ohio [MR* HARTER] asked the other day,
What about pork?" I think I can answer that. A year or two
ago, as gentlemen from Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, and Missouri
will bear me witness, the corn crop was such a failure throughout all the corn States that the farmers had little or nothing on
which to winter their swine, and they shipped nearly all their
hogs, including even their breeding stock, whether fat or not, to
market, and ever since the country has been decidedly short on
hogs. That is all there is of the exception to the rule of downward prices, so far as hogs are concerned, and which the gentleman paraded here as an argument to prove that silver had
lost its purchasing power. But let him make a note of the f act
that a silver dollar will buy as much pork as a gold dollar any
day in the week.
The demonetization of silver helped nobody except those owning Government funds, and it injured everybody else.
The act of 1873 produced incalculable bankruptcy, suffering,
and sorrow throughout the land—particularly in agricultural
States. The people were aghast at the sudden and awful ruin
which so unexpectedly came upon them.
For example, a man who owned $25,000 worth of property and
owed $10,000.on it and was therefore worth $15,000, went to bed
at night happy in the belief that he was comfortably fixed financially and awoke next morning to find himself a pauper—for so
great had been the fall in prices that his $25,000 worth of prop-

erty when sold under the hammer would not bring enough to
pay the ten thousand of his debt.
Hundreds of thousands of as honest and industrious men as
ever lived found themselves beggared and their wives and children homeless and shelterless by the most diabolical act ever
placed upon a statute book. And though twenty long, wearisome
years have rolled over their heads since then, tens of thousands
of them suffer from it yet, and will continue to suffer from it
until they are placed under the sod.
The wasting by fire and sword of the Palatinate, the black
ruin wrought by the Duke of Alva in the Netherlands, the devastation of the Napoleonic campaigns, the Thirty Years War
in Germany, the seven years war which the mighty Frederick
waged against all Europe in arms for the possession of Silesia,
the Crusades for the redemption of the Holy Sepulchre, the wars
in which Marlborough broke the power 01 Louis XIV—none of
these singly, nor all of these combined, caused as much loss of
property and entailed as much suffering on the children of Adam
as the crime of 1873. It laid its paralyzing hand on every human
being throughout the whole civilized world who was not possessed
of a fixed income or who was not loaded down with gold-bearing
Government securities.
There has been no era of genuine prosperity in this country
since. The Bland act helped a little and the energy of the
American people, being unconquerable, has sometimes forced a
seeming prosperity; but the trend of prices has been constantly
downward, which, according to all political economists, is an infallible sign of the sinking fortunes of a nation; and there will
never be any substantial, permanent prosperity in this country
until the people are furnished a volume of money adequate to
their commercial wants, growing with our growth, increasing
with our population.
An old legend ran:
While stands the Coliseum, Rome shall stand;
When falls the Coliseum, Rome shall fall;
And when Rome falls—the world.
To this poetic prophesy , long since fulfilled, I will add in sober
prose: "When the American farmer is impoverished and the
American laborer can not find remunerative employment, the
very lifeblood of the Republic is being sucked from its veins."
[Here the hammer fell.]
On motion of Mr. BRYAN, Mr. CLARK'S time was indefinitely extended.
Mr, CLARK. I thank the gentleman and the House.

The gentlemen of the single gold standard melt and dissolve
in tears when they consider the bare possibility of bondholders
being paid in what they flippantly denounce as the 50-cent
dollar; but they have no bowels of compassion for those who, if
the single standard prevails, will be compelled virtually to pay
two dollars for every one which they promised to pay.
The truth is that we are advocating honesty and justice, and
they are advocating rank injustice and extortion committed under the guise of law. [Applause.]
They declaim grandiloquently abont upholding national honor
and about the sanctity of contracts. They charge us with being

repudiationists. Now, who repudiated the contract, the bondholders or the people? What was the contract? How was it
nominated in the bond? It was expressly provided that they
should be paid in " lawful money "—which meant gold, silver, or
paper; and this was just, for their owners paid for them in paper
money worth 40 cents on the dollar. Then, after the war was
over, and they had the bonds securely locked up, under the pretext
of "strengthening the public credit"—that is the way they put
it—not of ' * strengthening the bank account of the bondholders "
[laughter], which is the way it ought to have been put—they
induced a supple Congress to repudiate the contract with the
people and to make the bonds payable in coin. That was step
number one to rob the people. That was bad enough in all conscience sake. But worse was to follow. They by fraud induced
Congress to pass the act of 1873 demonetizing silver, thereby
making payment in coin mean payment in gold.
Again, I ask who broke faith? Who repudiated the contract?
The people or the bondholders?
What was the result of these changes? It meant that it took
from the people in way of taxes two horses, two cows, two sheep,
two hogs, two bushels of wheat, corn, oats, barley, or flax, where
one was taken before: it meant two blows of the axe, maul,
sledgehammer, or pick where one sufficed before: it meant two
drops of sweat wrung from the brow of labor where there was
one before; it meant less food, fewer clothes, less time for study,
poorer shelter, less leisure, and less enjoyment to every man,
woman, and child in this broad land who works for a living.
It means that after the people have been taxed nearly to death
for thirty years to pay the public debt, and after paying twothirds of it, they practically owe more of it than they did when
they began to pay it. It is only a repetition of the story of th*
Sybilline books.
Solomon says:
There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things say not,
It is enough: the grave; and the barren womb; the earth that is not filled
with water; and thefirethat saith not, It is enough.
If he were writing his Proverbs now he could add a fifth thing
that is never satisfied—the holder of American bonds.
If we obey their behests and enact the additional legislation, in
a hundred years the people will be reduced to the wretched condition of Russian serfs or Mexican peons, and the bondholders
will have all the money in the country; for, as old Jim Craig, of
St. Joe, was wont to say: "When a dollar goes down into their
capacious pockets the eagle on it sings, ' Farewell, vain world,
I'm going home!'" [Laughter and applause.]
The national banks are heard here and get what they want.
The tariff barons are heard here and get what they want. The
self-constituted and multiform boards of trade are heard here
and get what they want. The bondholders are heard here and
get what they want. The great corporations are heard here and
get what they want. The Army and Navy are heard here and
get what they want. The subsidized steamship mail companies
are heard here and get what they want. These can always offer
a reason which carries instant conviction with it. But when the
farmers of the country, through their representatives, prefer
a request that they be not totally ruined, they are told to work

more and talk less. When millions of honest laborers ask Congress to so order things as to give them the poor privik ge of
having a chance to toil, they are denounced as tramps and vagabonds. [Applause.]
For thirty-two years the legislation of this country appears to
have had one end in view—that of building up a moneyed aristocracy, the very danger which the fathers of tne Republic foresaw, against which they warned us, and from which Jefferson
thought he had saved the country, when he abolished the law
of primogeniture. This course bodes no good to the Republic.
Truly did Goldsmith say:
111 fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,
Where wealth accumulates, and men decay.
Princes and lords mayflourishor may fade—
A breath can make them, as a breath has made;
But a bold peasantry, their country's pride.
When once destroyed, can never be supplied.

W e have during this debate heard many sneers at "popular
delusions." The single standard advocates roll that phrase as
a delicious morsel under their tongues. They may learn to feel
the power of popular fury.
At the beginning of the French revolution the people sent up
a cry for bread that has sounded down the ages. An upstart
aristocrat responded: " Let the people eat grass!" Then came
the dies irae—the day of wrath—at whose awful scenes the world
still shudders. May a merciful God lead us* into more pacific
and prosperous paths! [Applause.]
"Popular delusions!" Those are sonorous words. We are
gravely told by the single-standard gold men that the people
do not know what is the matter with them, can not understand
what is destroying them, do not know what they want, and must
rely for information entirely upon the leaders of the other side.
That would certainly be repeating the a: cient and futile performance of going to a goat's house for wool.
Now, the average American citizen may not be much of a political economist or logician. He may not know a syllogism
when he sees it, and can not, in technical terms, distinguish a
major premise from a minor; but nevertheless, in his own homely
way, he reasons a great deal more than he gets credit for. He
knows when he is hurt and when his business is crippled. [Applause.] He understands that when, after toiling sixteen hours
a day through summer's heat and winter's cold, and after practising the severest economy, he can not at the end of the year
make buckle and tongue meet, there is something radically
wrong and that " something is rotten in the state of Denmark."
He may be afflicted with "popular delusions," but when he can
not, in 1893, sell for $50 per acre a farm which in 1872 cost him
$100 per acre, he will search for the authors of that unpleasant
phenomenon, and punish them when found. His weapon is the
ballot, which, in the hands of resolute men, is more effective
than shot and shell and Krupp's big guns. [Applause.]
And it is the toilers of the country—the farmers, the mechanics, the merchants, the shopkeepers, the wage earners—
rather than the boards of trade that finally make up the sum
total of that public opinion against whose "pitiless peltings"
the gentleman from New York warned us last Saturday. The
bulk of the people are not much in the habit of memorializing

Congress, but they are much in the habit of thinking and of
voting. [Applause.]
The leaders in the cities express their opinions through the
metropolitan press by resolutions of all sorts of boards and by
pamphlets galore. The great body of the people, the wealth
creators, are not heard from in any such way; but as certain as
God reigns in heaven, they will discover a way to make their
voice penetrate even to this Hall.
" L e t the people eat grass!" quoth the pampered lackey of
Louis XVI, who lost his head upon the block.
" The people be damned!" shouts William H. Vanderbilt, whose
father laid the foundations of a more than princely fortune by
selling root beer at 3 cents per glass.
'' Popular delusions!" exclaims the gentleman from Tennessee,
whose sudden conversion eclipses that of Saul of Tarsus, as he
journeyed down from Jerusalem to Damascus. [Laughter and
Over against these ejaculations I would place for our instruction
the words of the foremost man of all this world. On a celebrated
occasion Queen Victoria thought to overawe William E. Gladstone by saying: " Do you know who I am? I am the Queen of
England!" To which the great commoner answered: 4 4 Madam,
do you know who 1 am? I am the people of England!" [Applause.]
No wonder he is universally known as the Grand Old Man.
If gentlemen do not believe that the people have opinions and
know how to make them effective, let them recall the consequences of the act of 1873 and the financial crash which it precipitated.
The first political fruit was the election of William Allen to
the governorship of Ohio in 1873—the first Democratic governor that Ohio had had since 1853. The resurrection of one
from the dead would not have astonished the country more. So
unexpected was it—so utterly impossible did it seem of performance—that the morning after the election all the Cincinnati papers announced in a perfunctory sort of way that Governor Noyes
and the entire Republican ticket were elected by the usual majorities; but when the rural districts were heard from, " Old
Bill," as his followers loved to call him, was found to have won
the great handicap by a length.
Then followed the tidal wave of 1874, which sent a Democratic
majority to this House, which landed Michael Kerr, of Indiana,
in the chair where you now sit, Mr. Speaker, and which for the
first time in a generation gave Massachusetts a Democratio
chief magistrate.
Then, in 1876, came the election of Samuel J. Tilden to the
Presidency; twice since then Mr. Cleveland has been sent to
the White House; and finally, after the lapse of thirty-four
years, we have an Administration Democratic in all its branches.
All these things found their mainspring in the protest of the
people against the unpardonable sin of 1873.
In addition to these, the country has witnessed the rise and
fall of the Greenback party, which was nothing more than an
extreme protest against the foul performance of 1873.

hich at the last election polled a million votes, which returne

eleven Representatives to this House, which sent four United
States Senators to the other end of the Capitol, and which stands
here, vigilant, alert, courageous, and aggressive, ready to take
advantage of any blunder we may make.
The "pitiless pelting" of public opinion has been doing its
perfect work, and will continue to do it until the wrong of 1873
is completely righted.
We have been repeatedly told by the single-standard men that
this Congress has a golden opportunity. Verily, verily, it has.
I thank them for that word. I profess myself an opportunist.
One of the best beloved of my teachers was forever repeating to
his pupils: "Carpe diem—seize the day!" This Congress has
the opportunity to redeem the pledges solemnly made to the
people, thereby placing the country upon the broad highway to
lasting prosperity and of preserving Democratic honor bright as
the spear of Achilles or the plowshare of Cincinnatus.
The great Irish orator, Charles Stewart Parnell, once said:
Opportunity is a horse, saddled and bridled, which stops at each man's
threshold once in a lifetime. Be ready, mount, and he carries you on to
success and honor. Pause but a moment, he is gone, and the clatter of his
iron hoofs, echoing down the corridors of time, will forever remind you of
what you have lost.
My Democratic brethren, the magnificent silver-white steed
stands pawing impatiently at our gates. Let us vault into the
saddle and ride him into the realm of unfailing prosperity, amid
the benedictions of a grateful people. [Prolonged applause.]
Mr. McLAURIN. The hour is now so late that I do not think
it would be proper to have another speech to-night. I move,
therefore, that the House adjourn.
The motion was agreed to; and accordingly (at 10 o'clock and
25 minutes p. m.) the House adjourned.