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lowa—repairs made? That surely is an error! For hath not the saintly
plates prayed for grief to cover the state like a leaky blanket in a rain storm? Yes, Shylock, miles and miles again! But the equipments are allowed to wear out—old, rotten, wheezy, mud fakes for locomotives! No, gentle plute—for there were $2,251,338 spent for new rolling stock. “But they have discharged their men—not so many men employed now we know this, because the great and adorable dailies said so!” Well, it was one of Satan’s vesper songs—whispering lies into your ears. They employed over “How then is it that so many railroads in lowa go into bankruptcy?” Answer that question by asking this Yankee conundrum: “Dew thay?” , Let us see: In 1886 there were six roads in Receiver’s-hands. In 1887 there were seven. In 1888 there were six. In 1889 there were five! In. 1890 THEBE WEBE—WAS—one! Now, Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and all the others —talk t.hin condition of things to your legislators—your next crop—and let it be full-headed and well strawed. Last April the first alliance was organized in New York State. Today there are 5,000 members of the “N. F. A. &I. U.” in just one county. At the recent elections they carried seventeen out of twenty-nine supervisors in Allegheny Co—an old republican stronghold. Editor Great West: It is plainly apparent to every observer that no legislation of real bene fit to the masses of the people will be accomplished at the present session of most of the western legislatures. Hence, it is incumbent on the minor ity favoring remedial legislation to insist on a roll call on all important measures to the end that friends and enemies may alike have a chance to show their colors. Then “up guards and at them,” on every occasion, being always mind ed that “the old guard never surrenders.” The defeat of the Currier bill, as well as the Bell bill to prohibit all un earned railroad grants in the closing Minnesota legislature, demonstrates the necessity of hereafter putting only tried men and true on guard, while in the case of a part at least, one might be pardoned in suspecting that they had indeed sold their birthright for a mess of pottage. But what shall we say of the Benedict Arnolds, who after violating every pledge given by themselves, or their party, come before you again for your suffrages? Mark them well, and bear in mind that ye cannot gather grapes of thorns, nor figs of thistles; neither can ye expect that the men who have ■once betrayed the trust reposed in them will at any future time pursue a different course —except that having fallen once, the second step in the 'downward course will be taken more readily. It matters not to the people of this state whether the arguments against these various measures were advanced in secret conference in the hall leading from the senate postoffices or in the various alleged places of amusement, with which cities abound. Nor is there any disposition to state of what said arguments consisted; or whether the conclusions ar rived at were in any case the result of one or more rides, drives, and visits in company with well known railroad employes —the result is the same, for the people have been betrayed in the camp of their friends. For the benefit of'such of the members who may have voted through a misconception of the facts and the information of the masses of the people of the state, it is proposed to give a few facts on the alleged land grants as an appendix to our article on the railroad question in your issue of the 10th inst. By reference to the report of the Public Land Commission of the United .'States, it is estimated that at different times there had been granted by the United States to or for corporations, the following vast area of the public domain, viz.: For railroads, acres • 215,000.000 “ Wagon roads 1,301,040 “ Canals 4,424,073 Total, acres 220,725,113 Or more than two and one-fifth times the combined area of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia. And in this estimate no account is made of any lands granted by the various states to corporations, out of its swamp land, which in this state amounts to over four million acres, nor is any account taken of lands granted by the state -of Texas. The Land Commission referred to, was composed of James A. William son, then Commissioner of the General Land Office, and later connected with the Santa Fe road; A. T. Britton, of Britton, Gray, & Drummond, railroad attorneys, of Washington; Clarence King, J. W. Powell, and Thos. Donaldson. Hence it was in no sense inimical to the corporations, and it is not therefore unfair to take the highest amount estimated by said Com mission. Inasmuch as the State of Minnesota has sold all of its lands at not less than five dollars per acre, and as a very large proportion of the lands granted to such corporations or their swindling directors, in many cases at forty dollars an acre and upwards, it will not be unfair to estimate the value of the lands so granted at say $5 an acre, and we have — Value of lands granted $1,103,625,567 Add U. S. Bonds 64,623,512 Add Interest accumulated 114,261,247 Total $1,272,510,327 ' Or over one and a quarter billion dollars. Mr. Pattison, one of the Pacific Railway Commission, estimated that the value of certain grants made to the Pacific Railway Companies, for the use thereof, was in addition about 80 per cent of the original grants; hence, applying this rule to all the grants made by the United States to or for corporations, and excluding all grants made by states, and we find that tte value of the aid so given is $2,308,518,588, or an amount more than double the total interest bearing debt of the United States. As the same appeared on January Ist, 1887, and approximately over three times the total debt of the United States at the present time. By reference to the reports of the Secretary of the Treasury, we find that the interest bearing debt of the United States was greatest on August 21st, 1865. And that on that date the total interest bearing debt of the United States, (see House Executive Documents of 1885 and ’B6, vol. 16, page 79,)—was, $2,381,530,294, or only $73,011,706 more than the value of the alleged aid given by the government of the United States to or for corporations. [And this is reckoning at $5.00 per acre, when millions of Acres have been sold at from 10 to s2o.— Ed. G. W.] Farmers of the United States! Read and reflect on these figures. And *hen come to a definite conclusion in the matter—for it is a question that directly involves your interest, and through you the interest and prosperity of the nation. Be not weary in well doing, nor discouraged by trifles; and be ever mindful of the fact that in Union there is strength. __ Hence, the present de feats, galling and disgraceful though they be, need* not cause you to be discouraged—but rather spur you on to further and more determined ac tion in the future. Years ago, the following letter was written by a prominent railroad man, defining the manner of securing or defeating legislation: Friend Colton:— I have ordered all bills introduced in congress to be sent to Sanderson that have any bearing on our interests. Please look them over, and give me your views. Many bills no doubt, like senate bill No. 50, will be introduced that are bad, and the only way to kill them will tbe in committee. Yours truly, C. P. Huntington. THREE THOUSAND MORE MEN! New York Arises! Burke on the Land Steals. i.-i-rf-J ‘ Mi 4 [Huntington is President of the Pacific Railway, whose correspondence we have partially given before.—Jin. G. W.] Evidently this plan 1 has been adopted, and many a worthy measure has met its death at the hands of the assassinating Committee during the pre sent session. While the accessories aftet the fact of such assassinations, have been far too numerous. Mark weU their action, and be not unmindful of the perpetrators. And now as a fitting close to the proceedings of the present sessions of our legislatures, we offer for the consideration of each body for adoption the following: Resolved, That the members of this body be directed to forthwith re port to this body a list of the passes or other transportation furnished them by railroad companies, and the consideration or services rendered therefor. John H. Burke. Nebraska passed the maximum freight bill—and then the Democratic governor vetoed it! That is another pin to stick into the old party wall. Put the two old parties side by side, and could you tell them apart? HAVE YOU READ GASAR’S COLUMN ? OFFICIiIL. Officers of the National Farmers' Alliance and In dustrial Union. President. —L. L. Polk. 344 D St., Washington. V. President. —B. H. Clover, Kansas. Secretary & Treasurer.—J. H. Turner,"Georgia. Lecturer. —J. F. Willets, Kansas. Chairman Nat ional Twine Com. (of National All .'Bus. Ass’n,) Dr. A. K Frain, 679 Wabasha St., St. Paul. Officers of the Minnesota State Alliance, President. —Hox, Ignatius Donnelly, Hastings. Vice Presidents: Ist District. —Thomas J. Meighen, Forestville, Fillmore Co. 2d District.—D. P. Lister, Lac qui Parle, Lac qui Parle Co. 3d District. —H. V. Poore, Bird Island, Renville Co. 4th District. —R. H. McGee, Wyoming, Chisago Co. sth District. —C. F. Bohall, West Union, Todd Co. Secretary.—A. L. Stromberg, Forest Lake. Treasurer. —H. P. Bjorge, Underwood. State Lecturer.—Vacant. Purchasing Agent. —H. L. Loucks, 673 Wabasha St., St. Paul. Ass’t Purchasing Agt. —Mark Graves, Adrian. Manager Business Agency.—Courtland Skinner, 673 Wabasha St., St Officials of lowa F. A. & I. U. President. —J. M. Joseph. Vice President.—Samuel Campbell. Secretary.—Geo. B. loung. State Lecturer.—T. H. Griffith. THE GREAT CONFERENCE Cincinnati, Tuesday May 19th. The call is broad gauge and invites all who have stood up for inde pendent political action on the great questions of Finance, Transporta tion, Labor and Land. It is as follows: THE ORIGINAL CALL FOR A NATIONAL CONFERENCE. Whereas, In unity there is strength, therefore it is desirable that there should be a Union of all the variously named organizations that stand on common ground. To this end, the individuals from various states whose names are here tofore signed in accordance with recent suggestions of the General Assem bly of the Knights of Labor, and the general wish of all progressive re formers, make this call for a National Conference to be composed of dele gates from the following organizations, namely: • The Independent Party; The People’s Party, by its representatives; The Union Labor Party, by its representatives; The Late Federal and Confederate Soldiers, by their representa tives; The Farmers’ Alliance, North and South; The Farmers’ Mutual Benefit Association; The Citizens’ Alliance; The Knights of Labor; The Colored Farmers’ Alliance;— And all other Industrial Organizations that support the principles of the St. Louis Agreement of December, 1889. Each state organization to send one delegate from each Congressional district, and two from the state at large; and each district organization to send not less than three dele gates, and each county organization not less than one delegate—to be chosen according to the custom of each respective organization, also that the editor of each newspaper is hereby invited as a delegate, that has ad vocated the principles of the St. Louis Agreement and supported candi dates nominated thereon in 1890. The delegates to meet in the city of Cincinnati, Ohio, on Tuesday May 19,1891, at 2 o’clock P. M., for the purpose of forming “A National Union Party,” based upon the fundamental ideas of Finance, Transportation, Labor and Land, and the transaction of other legitimate business in furtherance of the work already begun by these organizations, preparatory to a united struggle for country and home, in the great political conflict now pending that must decide, who, in this country, is the sovereign—“the Citizen or the dollar .” All papers friendly to this movement will please publish this call. THE GRFAT ST. LOUIS PLATFORM. Basis of Agreement Between the F. A. &I. U. and the Knights of Labor, The following is the platform, now known over the world, and to which reference is constantly made, adopted at St. Louis, December, 1889: 1. That we demand the abolition of national banks and the substitu tion of legal lender treasury notes in lieu of national bank notes, issued in sufficient volume to do the business of the country jon a cash system; regu lating the amount needed on a per capita basis as the business interests of the country expand; and that all money issued by the government shall be legal tender in payment of all debts, both public and private. 2. That we demand that Congress shall pass such laws as shall effectu ally prevent the dealing in futures of all agricultural and mechanical pro ductions; preserving a stringent system of procedure in trials as shall se cure prompt conviction, and imposing such penalties as shall secure the most perfect compliance with the law. That we demand the free and unlimited coinage of silver. 4. That we demand the passage of lawe prohibiting the alien owner ship of land, and that Congress take early steps to devise some plan to ob tain all lands now owned by aliens and foreign syndicates; and that all lands now held by railroad and other corporations in excess of such as is actually used and needed by them, be reclaimed by the government and held to actual settlers only. 5. Believing in the doctrine of “equal rights to all aDd special privileges to none,” we demand that taxation, national or State, shall not be used to build up one interest or class at the expense of another. We believe that the money of the country should be kept as much as possible in the hands of the people, and hence we demand that all revenues, national, State or county, shall be limited to the necessary expenses of the government eco nomically and honestly administered. 6. That Congress issue a sufficient amount of fractional paper cur rency to facilitate exchange through the medium of the United States mail. 7. We demand that the means of communication and transporta tion shall be owned by and operated in the interest of the people as is the United States postal system. We the undersigned, do hereby pledge ourselves on our sacred honor as men, to work for the promotion of the above principles, with the view that they may be incorporated into the law of the land; and further agree to support no man for office that will not pledge himself, if elected, to car ry out these principles. We further agree to co-operate with any move ment that may be inaugurated in conference by the Farmers’ Alliance, Knights* of Labor, and other industrial organization looking toward these ends. We further agree to not divulge any of the secrets or business of the or ganization to any one who is not a member of the same. WILL MEET AT PLEDGE. ' t MINNESOTA ALLIANCE PLATFOSM. The Farmers’ Alliance of the State of Minnesota, in convention assem bled, herebyordain and establish the following declaration of principles: First —We demand that the “war tariff,” which has too long survived the object of its creation, shall be radically revised, giving very material reductions in the necessaries of life and placing new material on the free list, to the end that we may compete with the world for a market, and that such luxuries as whisky and tobacco shall in no manner be relieved from internal taxation till the high protection tariff has been wholly divested of its extortions, and we especially denounce the McKinley bill as the crown ing infamy ofprotection. . Second—We demand-the governmental control of railways, both by state and nation, to the end that all discriminations shall cease; that reas onable rates shall be established; that watered stock shall not receive the reward of honest capital; that the pooling of rates is such an element of monopoly as should be absolutely prohibited; that our legislature shall enact a freight rate law which shall fix rates no higher than those now in force in lowa, and the reduction of railroad passenger rates to two cents per mile. We anticipate the ultimate ownership of railroads by the gov ernment as the solution of this question. Third—As producers we demand free and open markets for our grain, and that the railways shall receive and ship grain as they receive and ship other commodities for the owner to its destination. That the grading of wheat at country stations be abolished, and grain be bought and sold up on its merits; that the right to establish side tracks to grain warehouses and the equal use of cars shall in no manner be abridged. Fourth—We demand the maintenance of the present freedom of traffic law, the present grain laws and the law for the distribution of cars, and the erection by the state of public warehouses where the producer shall store his grainunmixed in special bins at actual cost, at Duluth and the agricultural fair grounds, and we demand that the legislature shall thor oughly investigate the method of handling, inspecting and weighing grain under existing rules. Fifth —That public lands be reserved in small ouanibities without cost, to actual settlers only, and we favor laws for the protection of our forests. Alien ownership of land should be prohibited, and we demand the forfeit ure and restoration to the public domain of all unearned land grants. Sixth—The present high rate of interest is unjust; it should be reduced to 7 per cent per annum, with stringent penalties to .prevent money loan ers from exacting a higher rate. Seventh—We favor an increase in the volume of money equal to the re quirements of increasing trade and business and without the intervention of banks of issue which shall be made a full legal tender. We demand the free coinage of silver, and condemn the silver bill as a fraud upon the peo ple. Eighth—All public offices which affect the interests of the people should be made electoral; therefore we hold that United States senators and rail way commissioners should be elected by popular vote, and also the super intendent of public instruction. Ninth—We demand that a law forbidding any railroad corporation from issuing any mortgage, bond or stock until the itemized amount of cash, labor or property duly sworn to has been presented to some officer of the state for examination, and if found to be a true account of the money, labor or property received, to register and certify to the same as issued in pursuance of law and as constituting a part of the capital stock of such corporation. • We ask the next legislature to establish the Australian system of vot ing for the whole state, and that election day be made a legal holiday. Tenth—We demand the prohibition of the employment of children un der fifteen years of age in the mills, shops, factories and workshops of the country, and we also favor the adoption of the factory and mine inspec tion law and the employers’ liability act, and we favor the publication of tree text books. Eleventh—We favor the settlement of all strikes by arbitration, and equal pay for equal work, irrespective of sex, also favor a lieff law that will give labor a first lien on its products. Twelfth—We are opposed to the giving away of valuable franchises by the state and municipalities. Thirteenth—That we hold that mortgage indebtedness should be de ducted from the tax on realty whether such mortgage is held at home or abroad, and we ask such laws as will make the hidden property pay equal taxes with the visible property. Fourteenth—We believe in a graded income tax for corporations and individuals to the end that wealth shall be compelled to contribute its share to the various burdens of taxation. Fifteenth—That the salaries of all our public officers state and county, should be reduced to correspond with the reduced income of the producers and working people. Sixteenth—That in obedience to a reasonable demand we request the coming legislature to submit the question of constitutional prohibition to a vote of the people. Seventeenth—That we renew to the soldiers whose valor saved the na tion the expression of our profoundest gratitude, and we declare that it is the sense of the American people that the men who fought for the Union shall receive liberal pensions, and that the same generous spirit should be extended to the widows and orphans of the war. Eighteenth—That while we still believe that the convict labor of the state could, if honestly directed, furnish cheap binding twine to the farmers of Minnesota, yet, as it appears that it is the manifest purpose of the present management of the penitentiary to thwart that just desire, we de mand of the present legislature a thorough investigation of that institu tion and of the recent purchase of a system of twine machinery, and if nec essary for its radical reformation, the removal of the penitentiary from its present location. Nineteenth—We demand the passage of the Conger lard bill now before the U. S. Senate, and shell further legislation as may be necessary to con trol the traffic in adulterated food products. Twentieth—That option gambling on boards of trade should be abol ished, and we ask the state and congress to pass such laws as to make all such transactions a criminal offense. Twenty-first—We denounce the force bill now pending in congress as a dangerous and revolutionary measure, devised for partisan purposes. It will open the wounds of the war and retard the happy day of regeneration and peace, and we hold that one of the grandest aims of the Alliance is the restoration of fraternal feeling and true concord to the people of the re public. Twenty-second—That the governmental methods of dealing with the Indians is illogical, imbecile and expensive. The entire management in all its details should be promptly transferred to the war department, and our bold pioneers saved from perpetual menace of life and property, to which American citizens should be no longer exposed. Twenty-third—That we demand that the government foreclose its lien on the Union Pacific railroad and take possession, and operate the same in the interests of the people of the United States, and we do not approve the report of Senator Davis, of this state, on that question. Twenty-fourth—That the Alliance deems it unwise and injudicious to establish an organ, but regards with favor and will encourage with its sup port all papers which espouse its cause and defend its principles. . Twenty-fifth—That we invite all industrial organizations of kindred principles with our own to federate with the Farmers’ Alliance, each main taining its separate and distinct identity, with a view to confederating them into one grand union. The National Alliance, and I. U. Platform. We demand the abolition of national banks and the substitution of legal tender Treasury notes in lieu of national bank notes, issued in suf ficient volume to do the business of the country on a cash system regu lation, the amount needed in a per capita basis as the business interests of the country expand, and that all money issued by the government shall be legal tender in payment of all debts, both public and private. We demand that Congress shall pass such laws as shall effectually pre vent the dealing in futures of all agricultural and mechanical productions; preserving a stringent system of procedure in trials as shall procure the prompt conviction, and imposing such penalties as shall secure the most perfect compliance with the law. We demand the free and unlimited coin age of silver. We demand the passage of laws prohibiting the alien owner’ ship of land, and that Congress takes early steps to devise some plan to ob tain all lands now owned by aliens and foreign syndicates, and that all lands now held by railroad and other corporations but such as is actually used and needed by them be reclaimed by the government and held for act ual settlers. Believing in the doctrine of “Equal rights to all and privilege to none,” we demand that taxation, national or state, shall not be used to build up one interest or class at the expense of the other. We believe that the money of the country should be kept as much as possible in the hands of the people, and hence we demand that all revenues, national, State or county, shall be limited to the necessary expenses of the government eco nomically and honestly administered. We demand that Congress issue a sufficient amount of fractional paper currency to facilitate exchange through the medium of the United States mail. The railroad plank was the subject of some discussion, and it was amended so that it provides for the complete government and State con trol of railroads by commissions; and if this is not sufficient to remove the evils in railroad management of which the Alliance complains, then the platform declares for an absolute government ownership and operation of all means of transportation.