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There can be no higher test of duty of a public officer than to faithfully perform
the promises made to the people.



T E N N E S S E E ,





R E P R E S E N T A T I V E S ,







The House having under consideration the hill (H. R. 1) to repeal a part of
a n 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. COX said:
Mr. SPEAKER: Certainly the most important thing in regard
to the great questions involved in this discussion is a clear, comprehensive understanding of what is proposed by this bill, and
if p issed what will be its effects on the great masses of the people, and its effect either at the present or in the future upon the
financial policy of the Government.
Much of this discussion has been technically for and against
bimetallism, and this bill not only raises that question, but, in
my judgment, confounds and confuses with it other important and
vital measures, that are left in darkness and uncertainty, that
should be clear and distinct beyond any doubt or ambiguity.
The sincerity of convictions is at once conceded to everyone;
but this great question demands absolute frankness and candor.

I t proposes to repeal what we call the purchasing clause of the
act of July 14, 1890. This clause makes it the duty of the Treasurer to buy on the market four and one-half millions ounces of
silver bullion each month, aud in payment for the same execute
and issue the notes of the Government in payment therefor.
These notes are made legal tenders for all debts and dues, both
public and private. This is exactly what the present bill proposes
to repeal. If this was all that is proposed there can be no doubt
of its meaning. The remainder of the act of 1890, so far as this
idea goes,would be left untouched and no mystification whatever
thrown on the subject in debate.
The remaining clauses of the act of 1890 remain so far untouched, and the two additional ideas in these remaining clauses,
to wit, the coinage into legal-tender silver dollars out of the
bullion, and the declaration in the act that its object is to preserve the parity of values between gold and silver, are still untouched and unrepealed. It is, however, an admitted fact t h a t
notwithstanding the act of 1890 requires the bullion to be coined
into standard silver dollars, which are to be legal-tender dollars,
there is in the Treasury belonging to the people bullion uncoined which will coin about one hundred and fifty million
legal-tender dollars." This large amount of silver belongs to the

people, and the notes which they have to pay are outstanding*
for it.
Now, your proposed bill goes f u r t h e r than the simple repeal,
and declares that "this repeal shall not impair or in any manner
affect the legal-tender quality of the standard silver dollars
heretofore coined."
Do you mean that the standard silver dollars now coined are
those t h a t are legal-tender dollars only? This is exactly what
your bill says, and if it was intended t h a t all the silver dollars
now coined or to be coined out of the bullion, why insert in this
bill the limitation and apply it to the dollars heretofore coined.
If this language was omitted from this bill, then the legal-tender
quality of all standard silver dollars coined or to be coined out
of our silver bullion would be legal-tender dollars. If it does
not restrict the legal-tender quality of the silver dollars hereafter to be coined out of our bullion, then the language is superfluous. No such mistake as that has been made by the distinguished gentleman who framed this bill. He is too careful for
Then I ask some friend of the bill to explain to t h e House what
will be the character of the silver dollars coined out of the bullion t h a t we own?
Did you mean to reduce its value by forbidding that the dollars
coined out of t h a t bullion should be legal tenders?
Mr. TRACEY. Would the gentleman like to have an explanation from me, as I understand it?
Mr. COX. I would be very glad to have an explanation from
t h e gentleman from New York.
Mr. TRACEY. Mr. Speaker, in answer to the gentleman's inquiry, I will say that I see nothing in the bill to interfere with
the legal-tender quality of the dollars which may be coined out
of t h e bullion later on. The Wilson bill simply repeals the purchasing clause of the act, and affirms the legal-tender quality of
the coin t h a t may be out. I t does not detract from the legaltender quality of those coins issued under the act later on. I
have not examined the question particularly, but it seems to me
very clear.
Mr. COX. I t does not seem clear to me. I repeat the clause
in the bill again:
B u t t h i s repeal shall n o t impair or in any m a n n e r affect the legal-tender
quality of the standard silver dollars heretofore coined.

W h a t do you do with the dollars to be coined hereafter?
Mr. RICHARDSON. Does this bill provide for the coinage
of the bullion?
Mr. COX. I t does not; and as to coining the bullion, it leaves
it where it found it, heaped up in the vaults of the Treasury,
with the declaration that the legal-tender quality of the standard silver dollars applies to those heretofore coined.
Mr. TRACEY. The f u r t h e r terms of the Sherman act made
them legal tender.
Mr. COX. I beg the gentleman's pardon. The Sherman a c t
did not make a dollar of them legal tenders. I t was the Bland act
t h a t did this, and the Sherman act did not repeal that part of
the Bland act.
Mr. TRACEY. Well, in reply to the gentleman, I will state

t h a t the Treasury notes given for the purchase of the silver bullion are legal tenders, and it provides for the payment of these
Treasury notes in either gold or silver, on demand by the holders
of Treasury notes. I can not see that the gentleman shows to us
in a clear way t h a t there is anything in the passage of the Wilson act which at all affects the legal-tender quality of any coins
now in existence, or which will be coined, subject to demand for
Treasury notes presented for payment by the redemption of these
Treasury notes.
Mr. COX. Then, if I understand the gentleman, the present
outstanding silver dollars that have been coined are legal tenders, and that the bullion in the Treasury, when coined, will also
be legal tenders, because the notes issued in purchasing the
bullion are legal tenders.
Mr. TRACE Y. Well, there are a great many other statements
t h a t could be made, but I do not think it necessary to make them.
Mr. COX. I think I know a frank answer. There is nothing
in this proposed bill directing the coinage of the bullion. The
limitation is on dollars hereafter coined.
Mr. VAN VOORHIS of New York. Then amend the bill.
Mr. COX. You can not amend it under the rule adopted. I
have called for a full, frank explanation, and the point is clear
that by this legislation you limit the legal-tender quality of the
silver dollars now coined, and you leave the silver bullion where
you found it, and if it shouLd be coined into dollars they are not
legal tenders.
Mr. TRACEY. Now, Mr. Speaker, we leave t h e law exactly
as it is. There is nothing in that law for coining the bullion,
except on demand of holders of Treasury notes.
Mr. COX. Then you do not intend even to coin it unless a
holder of the Treasury notes demands it. Do you expect such a
demand when he can get gold for his notes? But why did you
insert this in the bill?—
B u t this repeal shall n o t impair or i n any m a n n e r affect the legal-tender
quality of the standard silver dollars heretofore coined.

Mr. TRACEY. Because we wanted to allay fear and to prevent
excitement upon the part of the gentleman from Tennessee and
those who feel like him, and wanted to assure him that we did
not wish to discredit silver but to relieve the country from its
present distress.
Mr. COX. I must confess my gratitude to the gentleman from
New York t h a t in the consideration of so important a bill as this
t h e gentleman took into consideration my personal feelings in
regard to the matter. [Laughter.]
Mr. TRACEY. I am always happy to do so.
Mr. COX. Now, Mr. Speaker, is this the kind of legislation
t h a t should favorably impress this House? I venture the assertion t h a t no two men who are advocating this bill will give the
same construction and legal effect to this clause. You are attempting to put on the statute book a law equal in importance
to any passed since the civil war, and yet it is so ambiguous and
uncertain that no one can tell the legal condition of $150,000,000
belonging to the Government in bullion. If you place upon the
bill the construction that the silver dollars hereafter coined out

of the bullion in the Treasury are legal-tender dollars, you have
to do so in plain violation of the plain language of this bill.

I now desire to call my friend's attention to another proposition in this bill, and to relieve him as far as I can. He need not
take into consideration my personal feelings. I t is this clause:
And the f a i t h and credit of the U n i t e d S t a t e s are hereby pledged t o
m a i n t a i n the parity of the standard gold and silver coins of the U n i t e d
S t a t e s at the present legal r a t i o or such other ratio as m a y be established
by law.

I t has been announced so often on this floor by the gold-standard men t h a t the present silver dollar is worth but 58 cents; t h a t
it is a debased dollar, a dishonest dollar, and a fraud on labor,
that the saying has become stale with age. Now, if this is the
t r u t h you have asserted and you believe what you say, are
you willing to continue the circulation of five hundred millions
of these debased and fraudulent dollars t h a t are a fraud on labor?
A r e you willing to add one hundred ana fifty million more of
these debased dollars by coining the bullion and send out a new
brand of cheap, debased, and lying dollars? Are you willing,
not only to remain passive to such a fraud, but to become active
in its perpetration ?
You have an opportunity here to show your g r e a t admiration
for labor and protect it from such an outrage. W e offer to you
to increase the ratio. P u t silver into the dollar until there can
be no doubt. Destroy your 58-cent dollar, and make every one
of them worth 100 cents. Not one of you will vote for it. You
mean to bring this country to a gold standard, and thereby curtail the money of the country, so t h a t what remains may be increased in value.
You refuse to increase the ratio, yet you in this bill declare
the parity must be maintained, and you invoke and pledge the
honor of this great nation as security that it shall be performed.
I ask my friend from New York, if he refuses to increase t h e
ratio so as to bring up what he calls a debased dollar, How do
you propose to preserve the parity?
Mr. TKACEY. I shall probably find occasion to answer the
inquiries of the gentleman in my own time. It would hardly
be fair to occupy his time in making a speech in reply to him.
Mr. COX. I shall be content for the gentleman to select his
own course.
Mr. TRACEY. I wish to say, however, to the gentleman that
I do not change my opinion that he is somewhat in error, but if
it should happen that we should legislate in this Congress in a
way that would require some amendment, we could amend it.
W e want first to repeal this Sherman act and then after t h a t
we want some legislation that will satisfy the country generally,
and we hope satisfy the gentlemen who are clamoring for silver.
Mr. COX. Mr. Speaker, the point is that the country demands more than the repeal of the Sherman act. W h y not give
it to it. [Applause.] But the gentleman has failed to tell us how
he proposes to raise up the five or six hundred millions of debased
dollars and preserve their parity. Suppose a citizen should bring
any sum of silver dollars to the Treasury; these debased dollars,

worth only 58 cents, and demand the gold for them. Our honor
is pledged to redeem them. They must be in value equal to gold.
You will not increase the ratio. You must give gold for them.
You have adopted that idea in redeeming the notes issued for
silver; now, will you refuse it for the silver, debased and a fraud
you claim, after you have pledged all that is sacred with a nation to make and maintain the parity?
You must have the gold; you have but one way to get it—
thrust this nation and our people into debt by the issuance of
bonds. You dare not deny it. [Applause.]

I have no desire whatever to attempt to discuss the views of
different writers, and to try and apply their theories to existing
facts. It is facts that we have to meet, and the conditions which
stare us in the face. The error that lies beneath our financial
system is the fact that the Government is forced to meet results
brought about by combinations utterly foreign to the wishes of
the people. The United States can not and does not control its
own financial system, and often bands to combined power that
often brings disaster to the many and profit to the few.
As the gentleman from Alabama puts it, let us address ourselves
to the facts. No speaker has gone so far as to deny this proposition. As money becomes scarce, either by hoarding or combinations to reduce the amount in circulation, or by legal reduction
of the circulating medium property, the true and useful wealth,
depreciates in value. A full, healthy, good circulation holds
property to a reasonable value, and its capacity to pay debts is
maintained. The difficulty is increased and the amount of labor
increased in paying a debt when the volume of money is reduced
after the debt is contracted.
The justice of the entire matter lies in holding the circulating
medium as near the same thing when the debt is to be paid as it
was when contracted. This treats the debtor and creditor properly. I t would be a gross injustice to afford the debtor the legal
r i g h t to discharge his obligations in an inflated and almost worthless currency, totally different in its purchasing power from the
basis on which the debt was contracted.
I t would be a greater outrage, if possible, to legally demand
of the debtor the payment of his obligation in a currency that
doubled his labor to obtain it. The wrong becomes more aggravatedwhen you do this, because the interest on the debt is
also doubled, or the labor required to pay this interest is doubled.
This plain justice is admitted; but some gentlemen have contended that from this sound principle the debtor should not be
allowed to pay in a debased, cheap silver dollar. There is no
debased silver dollar in the United States in transactions between her citizens. It requires as much labor to get a silver dollar as it does a gold dollar. It is the foreigner who demands the
gold and brings the disparity, if any exist, between the two dollars. The gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. MCCREARY] frankly
confesses that England stands in our way and prevents us the
free use of both metals as money. She is the wall erected by
her own selfishness that forbids us to use the money of the Con341

stitution and of our fathers. She it is that presses this great
nation, against the protest of our own people, to abandon the use
of a metal as money which has been used from the birth of civilization. She it is t h a t discredits our silver and demands our
gold. Are we trying to follow the wishes of England or of
W h e n we announced the doctrine of individual liberty, and
that all men are free and equal before the law, England said no.
W h e n we announced the doctrine of protection to our sailors on
our own ships, England said no. W h e n we announce the doctrine
of the use of both metals for money without any privileges to
either, England says no. I challenge any gentleman on this
floor, who loves England so well that her assent must be obtained before we move, to tell me in what war or conflict England ever fired a shot for the liberty of the individual. W h e n
and where has her artillery been heard for the independence or
t h e sovereignty of republican government? As for me, as a
meek individual trying to represent a proud and free people, I
shall obey their will, and as far as t h a t is necessary, defy the
wishes of England. [Applause.]

Let me in no sectional feeling call the attention of gentlemen
to the unprovoked and unjust course you are pursuing toward
our people. The war left our country in ruins; our farms unfenced; our stock all destroyed; our court-houses, churches, and
educational buildings in ashes; our railroads almost useless; no
money, no property, but a firm and unyielding will. The stocks
and bonds of our railroads you purchased at your own price. W e
borrowed money from you to replace our losses and rebuild our
country; we promised to pay you in silver or gold; we refunded
our State debts into new obligations which you had purchased for
a trifle, and promised to pay you in silver or gold. In the State
of Tennessee you purchased what we called State bank money
for fifteen and twerfty cents on the dollar. W e have paid you
every dollar of it in silver and gold. You laid on us a pension
expense that cost us from thirty to fifty millions every year in
t h e South. This we pay you in silver and gold.
Our rural banks rediscount our notes with you and pay you
the principal and interest in silver and gold. You collect your
interest on your railroad bonds and dividends on your stocks in
silver and gold. W e in Tennessee pay you your interest on our
State debt twice every year, collected by direct taxation, in silver and gold. You have for thirty years filled our statutes with
class legislation in tariff laws, and this, the greatest of all burdens, is collected from us for the benefit of your favorite classes,
this we pay you in silver and gold.
W^ill you Republicans add any more to our burdens? Will you,
brother Democrats —Southern Democrats—with a swoop of your
pen change all these obligations into gold debts, and by your
votes increase and double the labor necessary to pay them?
Not one cent of an honest debt would I repudiate. I have spent
much of my time to prevent such a calamity; but, sirs, there is
a limit to our endurance, and I. for one, will never cast my vote
to add another feather's weight to the onerous burdens of my
people. No, never. [Applause.]


For a moment let me call your attention to another result t h a t
must follow when you bring this country to a gold standard.
The various obligations of t h e Government issued to raise means
to prosecute the war, as a rule stated on their face to be paid in
lawful money. The Supreme Court decided '£ greenbacks " were
lawful money and a valid legal tender for the payment of debts.
You remember at one time in our history the great depreciation
of this paper money compared with coin. The act of 1870 provided for the funding of the public debt into a series of bonds
stated in the act.
The bonds that fall due in 1907 form the great bulk of our present indebtedness. These bonds, issued under the act of 1870,
drew 4 per cent, and the interest paid every four months.
T h e original cost of these bonds varied, but were bought at a
g r e a t discount from the Government. The holders were anxious
to place them on a coin basis, and the act of 1870, under which
the new bonds were issued, obligated the Government to pay
them in coin at the then standard value. Silver was equal to
gold, and the bonds were payable in either metal as the standard
existed when the act was passed. I t is easy to understand why
the clause was inserted in the act. T h a t was to assure the bondholder who funded under the act that his new bond should not
only ba paid in coin, but that neither of the coins, gold or silver,
should be reduced in their standard.
The amount of pure gold and pure silver should remain the
same in the dollars, and t h e then standard should be complied
with in their payment. This was the contract and agreement;
to this the bondholder agreed and accepted the terms of the
act. In 1873 the act Tdestroying the legal-tender quality of silver for all sums abov e $5 was passed. This converted t h e bonds
into gold bonds and destroyed the privilege of the people, agreed
to in solemn contract under act of 1870, to pay them in either
gold or silver as they wished. These bonds reached the enormous premium of 30 cants on a dollar—a dollar in bonds worth
nearly a dollar and one-third in money. This almost destroyed
t h e bank circulation. I t had reached the sum of over two hundred and eighty millions in 1882, and in 1892 had been reduced
to about one hundred and forty millions, a loss in circulation of
over one hundred and forty millions, a redaction of over fourteen millions each year.
I n this serious contraction what was the relief? W h a t filled
this vacuum and held t h e money of the country up to a reasonable and sensible volume as compared with business? I t was the
Bland act that restored the legal-tender quality of the silver
dollar and compelled the coinage of not less than twenty-four
millions of legal-tender silver dollars every year. They went
into circulation through t h e certificates or the actual money,
and the prosperity of the country was maintained.
Now, what, in effect, is the proposition you propose to pass?
Restore the bonds of the Government back to gold bonds, just
as the act of 1873 did. Not coin bonds, but gold bonds. If it is
answered that we do not go as far as the act of 1873 in destroying the legal-tender power of the silver dollar, but maintain in
it t h a t quality as to all in circulation, let me reply: You have

converted the debts of the United States, every dollar of these
that are technical debts, into gold debts. You have cut off an
increase of circulation of about forty millions annually and declared to the world t h a t you will not increase the amount of
money in circulation one dollar.
Is there a man so blind that he can not see this unwarranted
and abominable wrong perpetrated on the taxpayers of this
Connect with this the idea that these bondholders w h ^ g r e e d
to take silver or gold for their bonds have not only been paid
their face value in interest, but have been permitted to draw interest, by taxation, through our national-bank system, at t h e
rate of 4 per cent, on eighty-five dollars for every hundred of
their bonds used in banking, and then loan and use the eightyfive with their customers, charging in some places as h i g h as
15 per cent for the use. These bonds thus legislated into gold
debts and obligations to be paid in gold by the people are above
the taxing power of either Federal or State legislation.
This bonded debt the people owe, amounting to about one billion, absolutely converted into a gold debt in violation of the
contract made between the whole psople and the bondholders.
The entire sum due in fourteen years, and the currency contracted about forty millions annually, and no outlet for silver as
money even proposed. Do you think, gentlemen, our people
will endure this, and the wrong done in violation of express
promises? [Applause.]
Let me add to this the amount of gold needed to discharge
our interest on our securities, both public and private, held
abroad, reaching in interest alone near one hundred millions
annually; the expenses of your Government, near one-half billion
annually; these two items covering every dollar of gold in the
United States. Now add to these your individual debts, secured
by mortgages and otherwise, your railroad debts, your municipal debts; your county debts; your State debts; all, all converted
into gold debts by less than twenty lines of legislation, and one
of our great money metals forever retired from our mints, where
it has maintained Itself against adverse legislation for a hundred
years. I t is to me appalling.
I wonder if there is a member here who told his people if they
would honor him with a seat he would vote to convert even t h e
national bonds into gold. If there is such, let him rise and announce it from his place.
Mr. BRETZ. He is not here.
Mr. COX. No; and if he had told his people that he would cast
such a vote he would never have been here. [Laughter.]
I am sure if gentlemen from my State, at least in my portion,
had told his people that he would vote to close the mints to silver, and especially so regardless of ratio, he would not have had
the privilege of casting such a vote.
Mr. BRETZ. T h a t is certainly true in my country. •
Mr. COX. In leaving this point let me say I am the servant
of my people. " A public office is certainly a public trust." I
admire the great man t h a t so fully announced t h a t idea. I admire him for his strong convictions of duty and honesty, but I
owe an obligation to higher powers than any officer of this Gov341

ernment, great or small. I know of no higher duty than to
faithfully do what I think is r i g h t . That is one great reason I
admire the President. I shall try and do the same though the
heavens crash; and I had r a t h e r have the words from my
people, " Well done, good and faithful servant: you have kept
every promise and performed every pledge," than to have the
praise of every other potentate or power on this earth. [Applause.]
The S P E A K E R . The time of the gentleman has expired.
Mr. BRETZ. I ask that the gentleman from Tennessee may
be permitted to proceed indefinitely until he concludes his remarks.
Mr. TRACEY. Mr. Speaker, the gentleman from Tennessee
and I had some conversation before when the gentleman from
Connecticut was speaking as to the extension of time, and the understanding was that the time should not be extended, because
another gentleman was waiting to speak. I hope, therefore, the
gentleman from Tennessee will limit his time.
Mr. P A T T E R S O N . Oh, I hope the gentleman from New York
will not object.
Mr. COX. The conversation was not of that character, but it
was stated that if you would induce your friend to stop talking,
I would not want any extension. [Laughter.]
Mr. TRACEY. But the gentleman from Connecticut very
soon concluded his remarks. If the gentleman will indicate time,
say fifteen minutes.
Mr. COX. Mr. Chairman, I think I will get done sooner if I
am not hampered that way.
Mr. TRACEY. Very well.

Mr. COX. The gentleman from Ohio [Mr. HARTER], who undertook to convince the House that the use of money amounted to
little in the business world, also told us our securities held abroad
were returning to us for sale and payment, because the holders
feared they would be paid in a debased dollar. W h y is the gentleman so much exercised about our foreign securities? If he means
the Government's obligations, then none of them are due, and certainly the holder has not got scared fourteen years before they
are due. But suppose he has, must the United States change its
financial policy of one hundred years' use to remove the scare
of a foreign bondholder?
Truly the gentleman has tender feelings for these foreign
bondholders. If he means private securities they will be governed by the contract and the law. Does he mean to convert all
these debts in foreign countries into gold debts to appease the
fear of these foreigners? Would it not be better to consult our
own people?

My friend from Connecticut who preceded me pressed the
point that the laborers of this country were receiving higher
wages than ever before. He had left us Democrats for a short
time in his argument and got that idea from the Republicans.
W h a t kind of laborers is he talking about? They are the skilled

laborers in the protected industries, who ought to have a liberal
divide. They get special privileges under the law, and their
gain is our loss. But when he states that his laborers get $3 a
day in gold how sad is the comparison with our working people
engaged on the farms. T h a t is more than they get for a week,
six days' work, with thirteen hours in a day.
Does he think the protected class should feed on the small
pittance of the other class? Certainly he has reference to mechanics. Fifty cents a day on the farm is about the wages in my
country, and this is labor generally of the colored people. While
we may not extol them as politicians and statesmen, as some of
our Republican friends used to do, no man, no Southern man
t h a t is a gentleman, would rob them of a crumb of their support.
The stupidity and ignorance of a man, formerly fettered with
t h e loss of liberty and deprived it may be of the advantages of
education and training, whatever may have been the reason, excites in the breast of the philanthropist pity, and indulgence;
but arrogant avarice, clothed in purple without, and bigoted ignorance within, excites no pity, but the scorn and contempt of a
noble man.
There is not a drug in the cup of labor I have not tasted, and
there is not an honest laborer in the broad fields of my loved
country I do not sympathize with,^and I had rather legislate to
add some little comforts to his hard life than to increase the
luxuries of the already gorgeous rich. Mr. HARTERgave us his
knowledge on checks and balances and announced that 92 per
cent of the business was done without money. Did he not know
t h a t this statement is in amounts and not in transactions. There
were 92 per cent of the transactions in business done with
money. True they do not involve large sums, but every moment
of our existence is full of thousands of transactions involving the
use of money. They are transacted by the rich and the poor,
but the poor are entirely confined almost to the use of money.
Is not the little transaction as sacred in our laws as the larger?
A r e the laws to be made for the rich and independent, and t h e
poor neglected? I t is the weak that need assistance from the
Government, the strong generally can take care of themselves.
I want to put Mr. HARTER'S plan in practical operation among
our laborers in the South. He must have his money every week,
atleast every month. Suppose you offer him a draft or clearinghouse certificate. He does not understand how he is to get food
with that. Suppose you tell him the balances will all come out
r i g h t . Do you think that will appease his hunger and provide
for his family. Take, if you please, your wards, gentlemen on the
Republican side of the House—the colored laborer of the South.
H e knows what a silver dollar is; he understands that is money.
H e works for it and earns it. Now give him one of Mr. HARTER'S bills of exchange, a draft, a certificate, do you think you
would treat him right?
Mr. BLANCHARD. A sort of sleight-of-hand proceeding.
Mr. COX. Yes, a legerdemain sort of proceeding; but if you
were to offer one of your laborers on your plantation in Louisiana
one of HARTER'S balances or clearing-house certificates in payment for his wages, you would certainly, and properly so, be
minus a laborer. [Laughter.]

These people are learning who are their friends, and may vote
with us Democrats.
Mr. CHICKERING. Do you think more of them for that?
Mr. COX. Certainly; they were once the best part of the Republican party. [Laughter.]
Will you take away the money he is familiar with? Or will
you pay him with a debased, fraudulent coin? Is any one so mean
that he will cheat a negro? [Laughter.]

Mr. Speaker, in drawing to a conclusion of these remarks let
me say that in the present condition of finance in this country I
am not surprised at what we call a panic. The fundamental
error lies deep in our system of finance. Every great power on
this earth has done just what our country has failed to do.
Under our Constitution the power is conferred " to coin money
and regulate the value thereof." W h o is regulating the value
of money to-day? Thirty per cent has been offered for money
in the great money center, New York. Does this Government
impose and sanction such a value to money? Is it possible that
the rulers of this great people mean to say that for the use of $1
for one year you shall pay 30 cents?
Does it mean to say that the dollar in silver, issued by authority
to be used in exchange of property and real values, used alone
for the purpose of aiding trade and exchanges of useful articles,
shall by any sort of combination be increased above the value
given to it by the Government, and, like silver bullion, be sold for
its market value, bringing above its stamped value in other
money impressed like it with the stamp of the Government?
Shall this great Government control its finances, or surrender
them to combinations and tricks that send disaster all over the
land? Will Congress, when the nation is on its knees begging
for the means of exchange, and pledging its labor for the means
of commerce and trade, begging for currency, be answered with
the cry, England must be consulted? Will Congress sit here and
by law answer the people when they cry for more money and
say, " Y o u have too much," and cut what they have into half
for a reduction?
Mr. HENDRIX, who sits just in front of me, delivered his defense of his position for this repeal. I charge here in his presence that nearly one year ago there was issued from the Bankers'
Association at New York: a circular to the rural banks all over
this country, asking for a contribution to procure the repeal of
the Sherman act. Does he or any man from New York City
deny it? That was before the panic. True, a second circular
followed, condemning the clerk of that association for issuing that
circular, and probably discharged him; but have you retracted
t h e purpose announced? I want a reply if I have done anyone
Did you tacitly agree or discuss the question in New York
t h a t you would not rediscount notes from the South unless we
would vote for the unconditional repeal of the Sherman act? Did
not one of your speakers in one of your bankers' meetings openly
declare that you could and would control t h e finances of this

Did your papers not boast that you had in your city two hundred millions of gold hoarded in your vaults?
If I do any man injustice, I pause for correction. Here is the
fundamental error. Let this Government rule for t h e people.
Let it rule its finances for the purposes of trade and commerce,
and forever let it put its everlasting stamp of indignation and
condemnation on legislation that legislates one man's property
up and another's down. Give us a fair and equal fight for human
happiness. [Applause.]

Mr. Speaker, the Sherman law is no favorite of mine. I t was
passed by Republicans, and is their child. Standing by itself
without reference to conditions t h a t existed when it was passed,
I heartily condemn it. I condemn it, because it made silver an
article of trade, and disowned it as a metal for money. I t was a
cowardly makeshift" to despoil silver of its monetary place, and
when our party met in Chicago it so denounced it; and it proclaimed that both metals should be used for money, not for barter or trade; it f u r t h e r proclaimed that all our dollars should be
equal in value; not in England, but in our own country. I t further proclaimed t h a t equal advantages should be given at our
mints for each metal.
On these principles I stand, and I protest against this repeal
that cuts our platform in twain, severs the last link t h a t ties
silver to coinage, and places this people on a gold standard. If
the silver dollar is too weak and depreciated, put more silver in
it, and make our dollars equal. I t is an ordeal through which
our party is passing. I have no other to go to, neither do I want
to do so. W e will succeed if we keep our pledges and stand by our
promises; but I shall stay with it, let what come t h a t may, and
if in this, our first hour of success for thirty-three years, we strand
the grand old ship, I shall stay with her until there is not apiece of
floating mast on the surface.
I most sincerely thank the House not only for its kind indulgence, but for the attention you have so kindly given me.
[Loud applause.]