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People's party paper. [volume] (Atlanta, Ga.) 1891-1898, September 02, 1892, Image 2

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take up the laborer on his farm and
put him in jail if he did not pay the
amount due for supplies, or for any
thing whatever that he might have
advanced on the crop or the labor.
Did they tell you that that same bill
put the landlord in jail if he did
not treat the tenant right—if he re
ceived the product of his toil as a
tennant as a cropper, or as a laborer,
and swindled him out of it? (Cries,
of; “No! No! They did not say
anything about that.”) They knew
that I was going to tell you that to
day, and lots more, and that is the
reason that the contemptible set out
yonder tried to break up our meet
ing, and prevent ycpi from hearing
the truth.
Who started this bill ? This little
newspaper down the street has gone
into appeals td your prejudices
against this bill as one of the worst
ever introduced, but who was the
author of that bill ? It was the Hon.
W. D. Tutt, and not Mr. Peek.
[Great cheering, and a voice, “ ’Fore
God ! how dem people can lie.”] Mr.
Peek did not introduce the bill at all.
What did the Sparta Show-my-light
say at the time it says Mr. Peek in
troduced it? Here is a late extract
from it on Mr. Peek in which it says
it was a '‘slavery bill.” Here is a
certified copy of what it said at the
time the bill was pending in the Sen
ate, and before it got so anxiously
soliciting for the negro vote. [Great
cheering. The speaker stretching
his arm in the direction of the news
paper office,] You ought to have
an appointment on the Atlanta Con
stitution or the Augusta Chronicle,
because you are just the sort of a liar
they want at this time. [Renewed
cheering.] Here is what it says,
August 15, 1883. [A babel of
voices from the blackguard point of
observation, which drowned the
speaker’s voice for the time being.]
They don’t want you boys to hear it,
but you stand by me and you will
hear it. There are not men enough
in Sparta to drive me away until you
do hear it—until I tell you the
truth. lam among my own people;
lamon my native heath; I am not
a foreigner from Kentucky, like Mr.
Black, who never was heard of until
after the war ; not only that, I am a
man running my own farm, and not
merely the nephew of a farmer like
Mr. Black ; not only that, I am not
one of the attorneys of the Central
railroad, like Mr. Black. [Laughter,
and a voice, “Golly, how he’s skin
ning him.”]
It is no wonder they are ashamed
to hear it. Now be quiet, all. This
is from the Sparta Show-my-light,
[laughter] August 15, 1883 :
“Plain Bill Tutt will bo entitled to a
monument at the hands of the people of
Georgia if he shall succeed in getting en
acted his bill for the enforcement of con
tracts between farmers and laborers.”
[Voices, “Now you’s getting there ;
we know’d it all along.”]
The editor of the Show-my-light
not only gave his unqualified indorse
ment that the slavery bill was right;
not only announced, through the
Show-my-light, that he was for this
slavery bill in 1883, nine years ago,
but that “plain Bill Tutt,” the man
who was going to put the negroes in
slavery, ought to have a monument
pointing heavenward for all time.
[Great applause, and during its con
tinuance the crowd of disturbers be
gan moving off, and trying to create
confusion in their exodus.] The lit
tle fellows are running now ; I told
you they would run soon. [Laugh
ter.] They are gradually folding
their tents, like the Arabs, and
silently stealing away. [Renewed
laughter.] There is only one left,
and he has not sense enough to get
out of the way. [Side-splitting laugh
ter, and cries of, “get two chips.”]
The point of attaction about him is
that his mouth is so much bigger
than his brain that [The antics
of the “what is it?” caused such con
fusion that I could not hear the con
clusion of the sentence, but it caused
screams of laughter.—Reporter.]
Mr. Watson (addressing the dude
let in a mocking tone): You just
stand there, baby, and I will baste
you again directly. When you go
home your mother will wonder
“where were you at?” (Laughter.)
Here is what the Show-my-light
says, August 23, 1887 :
“Mr. W. D. Tutt, of Thomson, is the
ablest and most efficient member of the
present State Senate. He is a man who
can always be trusted to do that which
is for the best interest of the State- and
people. He is and ought to be the
leader of the Senate.”
Again, on August 29, it says:
“Tutt's bill, which provides a punish
ment for fraudulently obtaining credit
on the faith es a contract, not intended
to be performed, passed the Senate, but
will probably be defeated in the House.”
What does that show ? That a
wonderful change, has come “o’er
the spirit of his dream?” The
Show-my-light said, vhen I was
fighting the bill, in the shape it was
introduced, that a monument ought
to be erected, by the men whom it
was intended to benefit, to the glory
of the man who introduced it. What
do they say now? That it is a
slavery bill, and that Peek and Wat
son ought to be hanged. (Voices,
“We know them fellers, Tom. We
will be at the hanging.”) Let us
come to the plain, unvarnished truth
as it is on record. On page 16 of
Journal 1, 1883, I find where
Colonel W. D. Tutt introduced a
bill. What was that bill as he in
troduced it? That bill made it a
crime for any laborer, cropper or
tenant to get money or sup
plies and then leave the place
•without first paying back the money,
or paying for the supplies.. As
passed it simply acted against the
laborer; it did not do a thing with
the landlord who might have failed
PEOPLE’S PARTY PAPER, ATLANTA, GEORGIA, FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 1892.
or refused to carry out his contract;
it did not do a thing with the em
ployer who might have failed or re
fused to pay' the laborer for his
service after he had worked all the
year. In that shape it was a one
sided bill; in that shape it was an
unfair bill; in that shape I told my
fellow-members that I would not
vote for it; in that shape I told them
that I would oppose it with all the
power that God gave me, for in that
shape it would punish the poor man,
who through sickness or misfortune
had fallen into arrears; in that
shape it would let the rich man, who
failed to carry out his contract, go
scot free; in that shape the Sparta
Show-my-light supported it and said
that the author, the Hon. W. D.
Tutt, ought to have a monument
reared to his glory, pointing heaven
ward, for all time to come. (Cries
of “The boot is on the right foot
now; the cap fits the right head!
Hurrah for our Tom !” and long con
tinued applause.) Now, who voted
for the bill in that shape ? A ma
jority of the Senate voted for the
bill in that shape, where it punished
the poor man and did not punish the
rich; a majority of the Senate
voted for that bill, where it pun
ished the tenant for violation of con
tracts but did not punish the land
lord ; a majority of that same Demo
cratic Senate voted for the bill in
that shape, where it punished the
employe—the hireling—but did not
punish the master. (Cheering and
muttered cries of indignation.) Who
are some of the men that voted for
the bill in that shape? I will tell
you. (Cries of “You can do it, Tom!
’Fo’ God, boys, listen how he’s goin’
for ’em!) Col. W. D. Tutt voted for
that bill in that shape (cheering);
Col. Livingston voted for that bill in
that shape. (Renewed cheering.) I
heard that Livingston was to be here
to-day. He has suddenly got to be
the prophet and the leader of the
Democratic party. (Laughter and
applause.) Just a year ago Governor
Northen was trying to show what a
rascal Livingston was, and Living
ston kicked him out of the State
Alliance Convention. At that time
these men said that Livingston was
a knave, or a fool, or both, for
writing the Ocala platform, and one
Mr. Ham—known as “sugar cured
Ham”—fished up out of a spittoon
in the convention hall at Ocala the
force bill which Livingston had writ
ten, and it was published abroad,
everywhere, as a crime, as an unpar
donable piece of treachery on the
part of Livingston. He had stated
at Cincinnati that the South was to
be brought into the middle of the
road; that the South was to meet
the great West in breaking up the
new parties, and upbuilding the new
South. (Great applause.) Not only
that, they charged him with selling
out to defeat David B. Hill; they
accused him of going around with
sockless Jerry Simpson and Mrs.
Lease to divide the solid South, but
if you look around you will see that
these same Democrats have plas
tered him all over with the mantle
of oblivion, and the sins which were
yesterday as scarlet as blood are this
morning as white as a biled shirt.
(Laughter and applause.) All that
change has been worked by the
magic influence of a Democratic
nomination. (Renewed applause.)
Now, I do not say it myself, but you
know that every Democratic paper,
which to day is heaping upon me
opprobrious terms of abuse, ridicule
and denunciation, in denouncing
me are saying in effect that if his
hide was hung up in a guano factory
the smell would be too bad for the
factory. (Wild applause, and a
voice, “Jest' listen how dat man
talks—i—m ! I’se glad I isn’t the
Kunnel!”)
(A fresh attempt was made on the
outskirts to break up the meeting.
A white plug-hatted fellow tried to
ride helter-skelter through the
crowd, proclaiming that there was
speaking in the grove, and a free
’cue. Nothing but the good nature,
produced by the terrible arraign
ment of slippery Lon, restrained
them from squelching the rowdyism
by force. The lawlessness could not
be fixed on the leaders of Demo
cracy, but certainly they did not try
to restrain it.)
Mr. Watson (good-naturedly and
sarcastically). That is getting very
weak out there; we have you
downed to-day, and we will bury
you in November. (Laughter.)
Now, let us return to the labor
bill. I was in the House of Repre
sentatives at the time it was up.
The bill came before us in its origi
nal shape. It provided to punish
the tenant and the laborer for non
fulfillment of a contract, but not the
rich farmer who rented the farm to
the tenant, or the employer who
hired the servant. I said this: If
you are going to m.ake a breach of
contract a crime, it ought to work
both ways. If the rich man violates
his contract with the poor man, he
deserves punishment as well as the
poor man who breaks faith with the
rich; that if the landlord drew up a
contract and had a poor man to sign
it just to get him in his grip, and
then broke faith with him, that he
was as great a criminal as any of
you, either white or colored, if you
got his provisions, his money, or
credit, on the strength of that con
tract, and picked up and went off to
somebody else’s place. Is not that
good Jeffersonian Democracy ?
(Voices, “It is! It is!”) “Equal
rights to all; special privileges to
none.” (A voice, “That’s the God
Almighty’s truth,” and continued
cheering.)
(By this time the last remijjint of
the plug-hatted gang had sneaked
away.)
Where, oh, where! are the demo
crats that w T ere going to keep me
from speaking here to-day? (A
voice, “Up Salt River. ■ Hurrah for
our Tcm.”) We have been conser
vative ; we have been patient; we
have submitted to personal abuse,
and returned none ; but the man -who
thinks that the People’s party is
afraid of any living crowd of mis
creants, reckons without his host..
(Cries of, “Now you’re shouting,
Tom; we’re right here, and here to
stay until after November.”) We
are going to stand to the rack; we
are going to hew to the line ; we are
going to follow the flag ; and that
man who stands in the way of the
mighty march of the people, in their
mission of securing “equal rights to
all, and special privileges to none,”
had better insure himself against
bruises, and knocks, and sore bones,
before making the attempt. There
is a limit! (“Good-bye, Jimmie.”)
I do not mean by that to threaten
any personal collision; I do not
mean by that to inculcate any per
sonal hatred, but what I mean by
that is that we are going to keep
right along in the middle of the
road. The road belongs to us as
much as to any other class of citizens,
and all the abuse, all the ridicule
that can be heaped upon us; all the
lies that can be told about us, are
not going to deter us from meeting,
as free men, face to face to hear the
truth about hov the democrats have
distorted the 'facts. (Cheering and
applause.)
Now, there never was a better
illustration of the power of right over
wrong than this meeting. They
have tried to get you away from this
meeting with a persistence worthy
of a better cause. They have piped
and you would not dance (laughter);
they have taken snuff, and you have
not sneezed (renewed laughter);
they have killed a dyspeptic sheep
or two, and one or two fruit fattened
hogs, and the people have deter
mined to let the meat spoil over the
pits (great laughter, and cries of,
“Go on, Tom, you are feeding us”),
and while they may go down there
and fill their stomachs, you will go
home with your heads full of Peo
ple’s party facts. (Great cheering.)
Now, to return to the “-Peek sla
very bill.” When that bill came
from the House of Representatives,
with Mr. Tutt’s and the Sparta
Show-my-light’s stamp of approval
upon it, what did we do ? We
amended'the bill so as to give the
rich man no advantage of the poor
man. (A voice, “Thank you,” and
the whole audience took it up). And
one of the best amendments to that
bill was introduced by Col. W. L.
Peek, who is the standard bearer of
the People’s party for the high and
responsible office of Governor of the
State of Georgia, and whom the
democrats are abusing as a slave
driver.. (Cheers for Peek). Here
is the record, and that will show you
the extent to which they have tried
to deceive you people. (A voice,
“We knows you and we knows
them.”) Here is the proof, and if
there is a single item that I have
failed to touch upon, you just sing
out and I will sing back. Peek
offered an amendment that: “No
provision of that Act shall have
commenced until after the hireling
commenced the service under the
contract.” Why was that ? Because
an unscrupulous landlord, taking ad
vantage of ignorance, might have a
contract made for five years, and the
innocent signer wpuld be sold into
slavery without knowing it until he
was bound by its provisions. It was
totally unlike the bill which the
Show-my-light said entitled its au
thor to a monument at’the hands of
the people of Georgia. (Voices,
“God bless you.”) The Tutt bill
was one that could have kept the
people on the rack in every instance
where an unscrupulous man chose to
exercise his craft over the ignorant
man. But Col. Peek said “No; let
us have the contract for only one
year,” and if there be any mistake as
to whether the contract, as made,
was understood by the party bound
by it, how was it that to be ascer
tained? When the employee, the
servant, the hireling, or the laborer,
actually recognized that it was a
good contract by going to the farm
after Christmas and starting into
work. What was that put in there
for? For the purpose of keeping a
man from claiming that you had
made a contract with him sometime
in December—that you had prom
ised sometime in November to go to
work for him, and got him entangled
on some frivolous claim; for in
stance, that he had received a plug
of tobacco, or taken a drink from
him. No; that amendment offered
by Col. Peek did not suit the Show
my-light because it guarded the ten
ant, the laborer and the hireling
against fraud, and did not go into
effect until after he actually entered
upon the premises and commenced
to work. (Great applause.) But
that is not all. We said that it must
be in writing, so as to keep the cun
ning man from imposing upon the
ignorant man.
(The band returned and was sta
tioned at a point where the meeting
must necessarily be disturbed, play
ing Dixie.)
Let them have the fuss, we will
have the men of sense; let them
take the shadow, we will take the
substance. Parents cannot be proud
of such children. The State cannot
be proud of such citizens. (Ap
plause.)
But, we went‘further and said that
if a man failed to pay back his pro
visions, he should not be a criminal
unless they could prove that he left
the employment for the purpose of
consummating a fraud. The land
lord could not oppress a man for the
misfortunes which might overtake
him. What else did we do? We
said that the landlord who broke his
contract with his servant should
have the same punishment meted
out to him as the poor man who
violated his contract. (Great ap
plause, and cries of “Good-bye,
Jim!”) They did not want,you to
hear me to-day, after they had been
circulating such infamous falsehoods
about Col. Peek and rnyself, but if
you boys keep your place you shall
have it all. They never did fight
this bill until it punished the land
lord for infractions of law just the
same as the tenant. (A voice: “That
accounts for the milk in the coca
nut.” They never did object to this
bill until it fed both men out of the
same spoon. (Great laughter.)
They bragged on it while the Hon.
W. D. Tutt had it in the shape
where it punished the poor, white
and black, and not the rich farmer
or employer of laborers. (Muttered
cries of indignation.) They got dis
gusted with it as soon as Col. Peek
amended it, and carried a majority
in favor of the amendment, where it
fed the rich man out of the same
spoon as the poor man. (Loud
cheering and drums beating by a
party moving off.)
Mr. Watson: Looking around com
placently, Give them a chance to
skedaddle, boys, we have plenty of
time. (Laughter.)
Now, I w r ill go right on, lam
here to face the music. What we
said in the lower house, when that
bill came to us, was: it may be a bad
thing for a tenant to leave his land
lord; it may be a bad thing for the
servant to leave his master, and, in
some instances, as bad as for the
landlord or master, to wrongfully
oppress the tenant or servant. Let
us try and be just to both. (“That’s
right.”) Here is my friend over
here who intends to run a farm next
year. He has the farm, but no
money. He mortgages his place in
order to get supplies to tide himself
and family over the year, depending
upon the crop to meet the mortgage;
he hires you to make the crop, and
the mortgage is large enough to tide
you over also, his paying the mort
gage depends upon you carrying out
your contract; his wife and children
are absolutely at your mercy, de
pending upon you carrying out your
contract. You may do your duty
during January, February, April
and May, andjthen when we get
down to June the days are getting
long, and the crops wooly, and some
unscrupulous rich farmer in the
neighborhood offers you an induce
ment to go and help him out, and
you pick up and leave the man who
carried you through the winter
months, and 1 you leave him with the
mortgage on his farm, the crop rot
ting in the field, and his loving wife
and dear children liable to be put
out in the road through your dis
honorable conduct. Now, do you
think that is bad conduct? (Cries
of: “Yes! Yes,!”) We said that the
man who did that, not from poverty;-
the man who did that, not from sick
ness; the man who did that, not from
misfortune, and in such away as to
show that he intended to defraud,
ought to be punished. What do
you say? (Voices all through the
assemblage: “We say so, too, You
are right, Tom, and you bet we’ll
stand by you.”)
Now, we said that, there is anoth
er man, even worse than that. Who
is that other man? The man who
would grind the face of God’s poor;
the man who took the proceeds of
your labor, when he sold the crop,
and would not pay when Christmas
came. (A voice: “God knows, we
know them!”)
Now, I say this, that there are dis
honest employers, just as there are
dishonest tenants, or dishonest labor
ers. Have there not been such?
(Cries of: “Yes! Yes!”) Such a
man would work you all the year,
whether you were black or white,
and at the end of the year he would
lock the corn in the crib, and put the
key in his pocket; he would send the
cotton to Augusta, and put the
money he received for it in his pock
et; and when you come to ask him
for a settlement you had to whistle
for your money. Ain’t that so?
(Cries of: “Yes! Yes!”) I say here
now, that there are not many men
who do that, but we said then and
there, with reference to a man who
would resort to such dishonest prac
tices—no matter how white that
land owner was, no matter how rich
and powerful that land owner was—
if he resorted to such practices to
defraud the white tenant or the
black tenant, the white laborer or
the black laborer, the white hireling
or ths black hireling, by keeping
him working all the year round and
then turning him and his wife and
helples children adrift, and not giv
ing him his share of the labor, he
was bigger rascal than the man that
took the meat, the money, the credit
and then failed to perform the stipu
lations of his contract. (Great ap
plause and cries of: “That’s the
God’s truth.”) We said this; if you
are going to punish the poor man
for non-fulfillment of his contract,
punish the rich man for the same
offense, if you are going to punish
the man who does not own the land,
punish the man who does own the
land—make no distinction on ac
cound of color, or* property; feed
them both out of the same spoon;
accord “equal* rights to all special
privileges to none.” (Clapping of
hands and great cheering.)
Now let me go right on. I think
we have about got rid of those fel
lows who were annoying us, and we
are going to be happy to-day. lam
going to tell you more of the truth
directly, and will prove all I say; I
do not ask you to take my word for
anything. Now listen, and you will
hear more about what was done
than these Democrats will dare to
tell you.
When I was a member of the
legislature I drew up a bill and tried
to have it enacted into a law, which
would directly help the laborer and
the cropper all over the State of
Georgia. How? You know that,
as the law stands, you may rent a
home for the year, and the land at
tached, and duirng the year I may
take a portion of my rent from you
or your wife children, and forget to
give you credit for it—l may take
some in vegetables, and fail .to give
you credit tor it; I may take some in
corn, and forget to give you credit
for it; I may take some in poultry,
and forget to give credit for it; and
at the end of the year you have two
little bales of cotton, and in those
little bales of cotton are locked up
all your profits for the jyear’s farm
ing. You have watered your mouth
thinking of the good things you
were ging to get when you had the
the money in your pocket. Perhaps
you had promised the old lady a new
dress, and your daughter a dress and
a brand new red handkerchief each;
perhaps you promised the boys new
hats and boots, and yourself a new
outfit, but in comes the sheriff and
levies on these two bales of cotton.
I tell you that gives you a
shrinkage about the vitals that
will not be forgotten in many a day.
You say, “Boys, I paid nearly all that
rent in such and such commodities; I
owe only about ten or fifteen dol
lars/’ Well, the sheriff says: “Go
and see your lawyer,” and you go to
long John Jordon (laughter,) and
say, “I paid all but ten or fifteen
dollars on my rent, and here the
sheriff has come and levied on the
two bales of cotton that I depended
upon to keep me in supplies and get
myself and the old lady and children
necessary clothing for the -winter.”
And what does long John say? He
tells you that you can go into the
court house and fight the case if
you give a bond for the costs of the
suit, and the payment of the debt.
Now, people do not like to go securi
ty for each other, and the poorer
you are the less likely you are to
find any one willing to go on your
bond and save your cotton, and on
account of your poverty, whether
you be a poor white tenant or a poor
black tenant, you have to go home
with tears of disappointment in your
eyes, and crushed hopes in your
hearts because you could not go into
the court house and defend your
rights. (A brawny farmer: “I
have seen that very thing done, that
is the God’s truth.”)
Well, I introduced a bill into the
legislature to open the court house
door to the doorest tenant, whether
black or white, juSt as it was open
ed to the richest farmer. (Cries of
“Thank you, thank you! God bless
you.”) I introduced a bill into the
legislature to allow the tenant to
swear that he could not pay that
rent, that he could not give that
bond, and then he could go into the
Court House and appeal to a jury
of his white neighbors who would
not turn that cotton loose. Was
not that a good and a fair law?
[Cries of; “Y r es, Yes!”] We pro
posed that should a jury of his
neighbors decide in his favor, he
should have his cotton, and not al
low the landlord to pick it up and
carry it away, and force him, wheth
er white or black, to introduce a
suit, and give a bond, in order to get
the cotton back. Now, I introduc
ed that in the legislature, and how
many Democrats do you think voted
for the bill? Only twenty-five.
How many do you think voted
against it, and said by their votes
that because a man was poor and
could not give a bond, the doors of
the court house were closed against
him—he could not contest with his
landlord, and that is the Jaw to-day?
(Cries of: “Shame Same!”) Do
you wan’t to know the mames of
some of the men that voted against
that just law? L. L?Columbus, the
leader of the House, of Wilkes coun
ty, who is a candidate for the Dem
ocratic party, and who pretends to
be such a friend of the people in
general, and the negroes in particu
lar. Mr. Reese said, by his
vote, that there ought to
be discriminating conditions imposed
on the tenant and not on the land
lord. Who else voted against this
bill so manifestly fair and equitable,
down in Richmond county? Why
in the name of God don’t they men
tion Mr. Reese and Robey, if they
want to show who have been hitting
the poor negroes’and the poor whites ?
(Several voices: “ They know
they are lying, and don’t try to
tell the truth.”) Then when I was
in the legislature you were taxed
heavily to build bridges, and we did
not see. any reason why the great
railroad corporations should not be
taxed as well as the poorest man who
had to come up and pay taxes on his
wash pan ; we did not see why your
stump-tail cows, your hogs and your
horses or mules should be taxed and
the great mogul engine, that could
haul thirty cars for these railroads,
should be exempt. We thought that
every man should pay taxes accord
ing to his means. Who w’ere some
of the men who said by their votes
that it was right for you to pay tax
on your wagon, and wrong for the
railroad to have t® pay tax on the
palace car ; that it was right for you
to be taxed to death to keep up roads
and bridges, but it was wrong for
the Central railroad to pay taxes
Who were some of the men wh
showed by their votes that they were
in favor of that great wrong. •
Calvin, of Richmond county, an
one of the men who is now running
as elector at large on the Democratic
ticket. Then there is another—-long
John Jordan (laughter), John 1.
Jordan. (Renewed laughter.) _ Hie
Honorable John T. Jordan. (Snicker
ing), Go a-head John Joi dan.
voice : “ Ugly John Jordan.” Great
merriment.) He says, by his vote,
that it is all right for the farmer to
pay tax, but it is all wrong for the
railroads to do likewise. Who else r
Mr. Hamilton Reese, of Wilkes coun
ty, voted the same way; Mr. Robey,
of Jefferson county, and several
others, voted with them. All men
who are high up in the councils of
the Democratic party, and all men
who are justly indignant at Col. Peek
and myself for trying to enslave the
poor negro. (Great laughter.) When
the Hon. (?) John Jordan speaks to
you again about my being the enemy
of the poor colored man, or the poor
white man, ask him why he thinks
it is not right to tax the railroads on
their mogul engines, their cars, their
trucks, and their palace sleepers, and
it is right to tax you on your horses,
mules, wagons, household furniture
and garden implements.
When in the legislature I voted
against the school bill making an ap
propriation for one year. Why ?
I will tell you. We had just passed
a bill to tax you to the extent of $l
- to build a new State house,
and immediately on the heels of that
Mr. Calvin came in with a bill to tax
you heavily for schools. I thought
that in consideration of the million
dollar tax j ust passed for the purpose
of building the capitol, it would be
too heavy, It was on the principle
of a man wanting to build two houses,
and having only enough money to
build one. What does he do? He
puts up the one most needful and lets
the other go until a more convenient
season. A vote against that bill,
when you were already saddled with
a million dollar tax for the capitol,
was no indication of my attitude on
the school question. [Several voices :
“That’s so.”] Four years ago, when
they were trying to build up the col
leges cf the State to the neglect of
the common schools, you all know
that I made a tight to the very best
of my ability for the schools. [A
voice : “ We know it, Tom.”] I said
it was all wrong to tax all the people
for the purpose of establishing col
leges remote from the great body of
the people, where only the rich farm
ers, who were able to send their boys
and girls, and pay board, could get
the benefit, but when you established
schools at every cross
the pupils can be cheaply fed in home,
where they could be kept under the
parental eye, where the poor man
would not be debarred from their
benefit by his inability to pay railroad
fare and board bills, they would be a
blessing, and for them I willing
to work and vote. In other words, I
was opposed to taxing the few to
benefit the rich. [Prolonged cheer
ing.) Now, to show you that I was
not an enemy to the common schools,
let me tell you who else voted with
me. One of them is Judge Maddox, of
Bartow county, now running for Con
gress ; one was Mr. Johnson, a Dem
ocrat, and he would not, surely, vote
against the bill if it was a blow at
education. Who else ? Anthony
Wilson, of Camden, a colored man,
voted with me for this bill, though as
strong an advocate of education a
any one in this county. [Applause. 8
Who else? Hon. John Jordan, of
Hancock county. [Loud laughter.]
Now, if you ask Mr. Jordan, why he
voted as I did, he will tell you that
it was not because he was opposed
to common schools, but because the
tax w’as too onerous in view of the
fact that the poople were already
taxed to the greatest extent, and any
more would be an insupportable
burden.
Now, what else? You will un
derstand that I have been making a
speech under terrible circumstances.
Every attempt, short of open vio
lence, has been made to break up
this meeting. (Voices, “They can’t
do it!”) J
Now, fellow-citizens, we are com
ing to something very interesting. I
hold in my hand a little dodger,
coming out of the office of the art
ful dodger, and circulated by every
sort of a dodge, and it is headed,
“How Thomas Loves Anthony.” It
goes on to show how I, in the Legis
lature, voted against Anthony Wil
son, a black man, who was contesting
for his seat. They say I voted to
make prohibition universal, and
showed a resolve to let no negro,
even when elected, serve in
Georgia Legislature, if I could pre
vent it. It alludes to my supporting
Mr. Black for United States Senator.
I did so, and I have no apology to
make for so doing. Mr. Black was
running against Mr. Colquitt and the
Atlanta ring, and I supported him.
J he only thing I am sorry for is that
he is not on the same side I am now.
I stood by his side and heard him
.denounce the Atlanta ring, and the
Augusta ring, in terms of the
fiercest denunciation. I was with
him in that contest, heart and soul
and I am only sorry to-day that
when I am fighting the Atlanta ring
and the Augusta ring that I am
standing alone, and Mr. Black is the
champion of ring rule, which he so
bitterly denounced. (Great cheer
ing.) > I am sorry that he is comin o
forward to put the chains of rin?
rule around, my ankle.
“We have something to say about
that!”) J

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