OCR Interpretation

The representative. [volume] (St. Paul, Minn.) 1893-1901, August 30, 1893, Image 1

Image and text provided by Minnesota Historical Society; Saint Paul, MN

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn90059591/1893-08-30/ed-1/seq-1/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

The Represent a tive
SI.OO )y/ar} in ADVANCE. ST. PAUL, MINN., WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 30, 1893. VOL. 1. NO. 18.
Debasement of Silver in England
by Henry the Eighth,
Not Like the Pending Proposition.
A Gross Misrepresent*
The Minneapolis Tribune of Sun
day, Aug. 6th, contains a column
long article, the purport of which is
to show that the debasement of the
silver currency of England by Henry
VIII, in 1543 and by the guardian of
his son Edward IV, by mixing it with
lead, reduced the wages of the Eng
lish workman ; and the writer argues
that this is the same thing as the
pending proposition to put silver
back where it stood in this country
for eighty-one years, and until de
monetized in 1873 by British bribery.
Where does the resemblance come in?
In the one case base metal was mixed
with the pure silver.; in the other
case the coin is all pure standard sil
ver, without debasement. In the
one case there was a vile alteration
of the ancient coinage ; in the other
we propose to restore the ancient
coinage to just what it was for four
thousand years.
And would it not he well for the
Tribune writer to remember that the
working classes in shop, factory,
mine, and on the farm, never were so
prosperous in this country as when
specie payments were : suspended and
gold was at a premium of 240 per
cent over our paper money. Does
that show that debasing the curren
cy lessens the workman’s wages ?
But the writer of the Tribune ar
ticle, With all his pretence of learn
ing and fairness, misrepresents the
facts. He would have his readers
believe that the debasement of the
silver coinage of England, in 1543,
lasted down to 1601, when the Eng
lish poor law was enacted. Now the
the fact is that thait debasement
lasted only 17 years, i to-wit: from
1543 to 1560, when Elizabeth restored
the currency to its former purity.
What was the real cause of the
falling of wages? Thorold Rogers,
in ihis great book, “ Work and Wa
ges,” preface, page 6, answers the
question. He says: \
“ I have attempted to show that
the pauperism and thb degradation
of the English laborer were the re
sults of a series of acts off parliament,
and acts of government, which were
designed or adopted, with the express
purpose of compelling the laborer to work
at the lowest rate of wages possible, and
which succeeded at last in effecting that
purpose .”
And this not during the seventeen
years from 1543 to 1560 alone, but
down to our times; for during all
that period, as Rogers says, “The
wages of labor have been a bare sub
sistence, constantly supplemented by the
poor rate” The only relief in these
latter days has been the capacity of
the workmen to organize for self de
fence. For generations the courts of
quarter-sessions fixed the workman’s
wages for him.
But think of the demoniacal cun
ning of the enemies of mankind
when they can thus pervert the plain
facts of history to mislead the labor
ing people to their ruin ! In other
words, they seek to abuse the God
given intelligence of the to
bring them and their wives and little
ones to poverty and suffering. Is it
not horrible ?
Al7-years experiment of mixing lead
with silver 350 years ago, in semi-bar
barous Eng-land, with s,ooo.ooopeople
used to justify the Rothschilds in re
ducing the mighty western republic,
with seventy million people, to bank
ruptcy by striking down silver! And
this is the leading republican paper
of Minneapolis! This is one of the
guides of the people, to lead them
to higher levels of knowledge and
greatness!! I.D.
A Cassandra in Breeches.
Read the following:
Atchinson, Kan., Aug. 2.—Ex-
Senator. Ingalls this afternoon in an
interview with a United Press re
porter said:
“Thi&day is balmy and sunshiny
in comparison with the ’clouds
and storms just ahead of us. The
ultimate result will be a redistribu
tion of the assets of the country.
The millionaire of to-day will occupy
the pauper’s hut and the pauper in
the near future will ride in the
charioVof the millionaire. Colorado
and toe other mineral states should
be blotted out as states and added
to the great American desert from
which they were taken. The devas
tation of the yellow fever in the
south was not near so disastrous as
the situation in Colorado, produced
by the closing of the mines. Thous
ands of people are walking the
streets of Denver like the lowly
Nazarine; foxes have holes and the
birds of the air have nests, but the
tramp of Colorado has no-where to
lay his head. On every corner in
Denver goes up the piteous cry for
bread, in Wall street the piteous cry
goes up for gold. When these two
panicky conditions come together in
the great Mississippi valley chaos
and anarchy will follow.”
There is some truth in this and
much folly. We cannot put to
gether the two ideas of the Ameri
can people and anarchy. There is
suffering—there will be more, pos
sibly ten times more; but there is no
necessity for a revolt, except at the
ballot-box.' Violence is not a reme
dy. It is unreasoning, destructive,
illogical. If Wall street insists on
still further ruining the whole coun
try the people may seize upon Wall
street and have a magnificent “hang
ing bee.” The Shylocks are fooling
with a terrible people. There are
depths in the nature of the Ameri- (
can populace which the plummet of
events has not yet sounded. <
Let us keep our tempers; help the
suffering; and advance on the ballot ,
box. The men who resort to viol
ence can only be justified by star
vation and we must not permit that
dread alternative to be reached.
The government, local and nation
al, must buy up all the food in the
mills, granaries and warehouses, and
feed the wretched, until wise legis
lation brings relief, and extricates
us from the gulf into which the old
parties have swept us. Keep cool
gentlemen; but like the Irishman’s
parrot—an owl—“keep up a divil of
a thinking.” I. D.
That Infamous Decision.
It will be noticed that the court
excepts from this sweeping assertion
all those who have public duties or
contract claims to meet—that is, all
workingmen affected by the recent
decisions of the federal courts in
railroad cases. That, however, is a
minor point of this decision. The
main point lies in the declaration
that what one man may do singly
any number of men may do jointly.
If that became a maxim of law, or
ganized society would be impossible.
One man may resolve to have
nothing to do with one of his neigh
bors to whom he may have a violent,
unreasonable and unjust antipathy.
To this antipathy he may have no
moral right, but he does have a le
gal right, and he can exercise it undis- 1
turbed as long as he does not at
tempt to communicate it to others.
When he does so the question of his
moral right is at once raised, and if,
as is taken for granted in this case,
he is morally wrong, then in inducing
others to join with him he is injuring
his neighbors, whom the law must
protect.—St. Louis Republic.
Nothing could more clearly dis
close the animus of our supreme court
than the exception referred to above.
Every man, they say, has a right
to refuse to work for another, or to
sell goods to him, or to deal with
him, in any way, or to fix the price
of his commodities; therefore all
men have a right to unite for these
ends; therefore there is nothing to
prevent all the rings and combines
that can be formed in any way or to
any extent: except— oh here’s the
rub— except the employes of railroad
They can’t combine; they can’t
unite; they are a class separate and
apart from the rest of mankind; and
have fewer rights. Because why?
Because the machinery of govern
ment must not be interfered with.
But the people, who made the gov
ernment, for whose prosperity it was
made, may be plundered into uni
versal ruin, without a shred of de
fence. The railroad corporations
are sacred, —the people contemptible.
The other day, in the old world, they
or their ancestors were serfs. Their
liberties are a mere accident,—in
cident to the settlement of a new
world, amid semi-barbaric condi
tions. They must be put back into
the old status. Liberty! Pshaw!
It is a thing of butternut-dyed
home-spun and deer-skins. Mere
man is a overcrowded, sweaty,
smelly, unpleasant animal. It is the
bank account alone that fcounts.
The Declaration of Independence!
Why Rufus Choate said it v as “a
string of glittering general ties.”
The mob hail it once a year with
drums and fire-works. The a istoc
racy sneer at it and ignore i t—all
the year rouhd.
“All men are created equal!’ Ri
diculus and impotent conclusion.
“How,”—says my Lord Stealage—
“can the man who wields the ham
mer, or raises potatoes on a jorty
acre lot, be the equal of the posses
sor of a hundred millions? lippos
sible! Absurd! Why the poor man
holds life and property by the toler
ation of the rich man; for the rich
man controls politics, courts, juries,
legislatures and public opinion.
The declaration of independance in
deed! It is as dead as John Adams.”
I. D.
Seeking Relief.
Secretary Samuel W. Thompson of
the Duluth Chamber of Commerce
talked to the water commerce con
gress, at the World’s Fair, yesterday.
He took for his theme “The Econo
mic Value of a Ship Canal from the
Great Lakes to the Seas.” Secre
tary Thompson’s ideas briefly sum
marized are as follows:
The extortion practiced by the
railroads will bring about the reme
dy in the building of ship canals.
The cost of moving freight by rail
has been reduced from 1.236 cents in
1882 to 9.27 mills in 1890, a decrease
of 25 per cent, which increased in 1892
to 9.67 mills, while the average cost
per ton per mile for moving the
freight passing through the Soo Ca
nal last year was 1.31 mills. The
ocean steamer Manola in 1891 moved
freight for an average of .46 of a mill
per ton per mile. The cost of move
ing freight on the canals of Belgium
by steam towage is from .46 of a mill
to 1.5 mills. The average earnings
of the steamers on the great lakes is
.75 of a mill per ton per mile. Coal
costs 30 cents a ton from Buffalo to
Duluth, equal to .75 of a mill per ton
per mile. The cost of running a
steamer of 2,700 tons is .15 of a mill
per mile and the coal consumption is
one ounce of coal per ton per mile.
By the system of towing on the lakes
a single steambarge and its consorts
now move 10,000 tons of freight in a
single tow. In five years more I ex
pect to see 25,000 tons moved in one
tow. The time will come when the
towing will be operated as a railroad
is now operated. Steambarges will
be notified by wire that a loaded
barge is waiting at this port and an
empty is wanted at that one. A
twenty-foot canal to the seaboard
will bring about the construction of
steamers of 5,000 and 6,000 tons and
will cut the pesent cost of moving
freight in two parts. The average
speed of the new steamers is 16.44
miles an hour. Freight trains move
at about that rate when under way,
but stops were so frequent that the
actual net rate of progress was eight
miles an hour, so that there was an
actual increase of speed in freight
delivered by water.
From the best information at
hand I favor a route by canal
around Niagara Falls, down Lake On
tario to Oswego, up Oswego River to
Oneida Lake, thence to and down
the Mohawk and Hudson to New
York. This route would be one mile
shorter that the Erie Canal, would
not cross a single waterway, would
be a quick route owing to most of
the distance being in deep water,
and according to the best obtainable
estimates would cost about $150,-
000,000. A tax of one-tenth of a mill
on the property in the commercial
territory directly tributary to the
great lakes would pay for the canal
in ten years.
We are a great people and we will
not remain forever imbedded in the
mud of wretchedness in which we
are now struggling. Secretary
Thompson is an able man, and his
ideas are good. Then there is a pro
ject for the different western states
to unite in building a railroad from
Duluth to the Gulf of Mexico. If
the people of the Mississippi Valley
States would stand by the populists,
at the ballot box, we would soon con
trol the machinery of government,
and give the people efficient relief;
but as long as they follow the two
old parties, or, strictly speaking,
the one-old-party, the demo-repub
combination, so long will they suffer,
utterly powerless to defend them
selves. We are not enemies of the
railroads; but we perceive that while
the price of all productions, and of
labor itself, has shrunk about one
half, during the last few years, there
has been no substantial decrease in
the charges for railroad transporta
tion. “Where combination is pos
sible competition is impossible.”
We want to make combination im
possible by a people-owned railway
from Duluth to the Gulf. We are
now simply tributary provinces of
the Atlantic coast states, which in
sult us while they plunder us. Let
us have access to the ocean at both
ends—at the Gulf and the St. Law
rence river. It will be a declaration
of independence for us.
Let us all move together. I. D.
The Horrible Pressure.
While I was in Chicago two men
ended their lives through business
troubles. One, a man of 70, Nelson
Van Kirk, once a millionaire, failed
to go through the clearing house,
for the sum of $56! He shot him
self; leaving a wife and several child
In St. Paul five banks have closed
their doors. I have no doubt they
were solvent, but wealth is not mon
ey; and the lack of currency—legal
tender tokens —ended them.
But the worst of all is the condi
tion of the working people. Broken
banks and ruined hopes are bad
enough, but they are nothing com
pared with the empty stomachs of
those who are willing to toil and
cannot get work. That is the awful
part of the whole business. I. D.
The senate may tie up the Wilson
An Immense Gathering of Unem
ployed Workmen at
Market Hall.
They Pray for the Restoration of
Free Silver Coinage.
We live in the midst of profound
peace. No war has devastated the
country or depleted the nation’s trea
sure. No blight, no drought or other
calamity has worked destruction to
the people’s crops. On the contrary
the harvest is an average one and we
are upon the very threshold of the
season when Agriculture pours her
year’s product of newly created
wealth into the nation’s lap. And
yet, in the face of these facts, there
is an almost total collapse of busi
ness, hundreds of thousands of men
are without money, work, or credit,
and, in some places, rioting for bread.
Nature has done her part. The hu
man suffering and loss of property
cannot be laid at her door. Clearly
and indisputably the trouble comes
from bad legislation.
This was obviously the opinion of
the crowd of unemployed working
men who packed Market hall Mon
day from rostrum to gallery to take
steps for the relief of the unem
ployed. It was necessary that some-;
thing be done by the city or state, or j
both, to give employment to labor
to provide against present suffering; I
but to remove the source of the trouble
financial legislation was necessary.
Edward Peterson was elected chair
man, and the object of the gather
ing was explained by Mr. Bantz.
What they wanted to do, he said, was
to adopt means whereby they could
make a living without accepting
charity. All of the unemployed per
sons present were industrious men,
who at present by force of circum
stances found themselves out of
The speaker of the evening, was then
introduced to the assemblage, and
was received with vociferous cheer
“The present,” he said, “ was not
a time for speechmaking, but for ac
tion. We were never before con
fronted by such a condition of things.
It seems to me that the one remedy
for this state of things would be a ,
little more confidence on the part of
those who have money in the bank- j
ing institutions of the state. Why
are you unemployed ? The man who
employed you conducted his business
on credit, but cannot longer get cred
it at the banks, because thousands '
have drawn their money out of the
banks ; and with the bank today it
is a struggle. It does not know at
what moment it may have to close
its doors because the deposits are be- j
ing withdrawn. And where has that
money been put? It has been
put into stockings, into chests
of drawers and into the earth,
and withdrawn from circulation;
and its effect upon the industrial
world is just the same as if a man
had the life blood drawn from his
veins. It seems to me that there
ought now to be a renewal of confi
dence in the banks on the part of
those who have withdrawn their
money. The banks could then lend
their money to employers of labor,
tlfe factories would be opened and
there would be peace and plenty
where now We have terror, doubt,
and danger. This seems to me one
of the great remedies in this case.
In regard to the calling of a special
meeting of the legislature, the speak
er said there was a fear that the ses
sion would be unnecessarily pro
longed. It cquld not be ascertained
I ion whether
session was necessary. If
lindtion by the ward com
ch Appeared to be the case,
effect an agreement that
confeider no measurs not
) the|present condition of
i (applause) and we would
ession up inside of 30 days,
pass li|ws that would enable
o create a bonded debt at
i of interest which would
city tb expend the money
int works that would em
(Appkuse.) The last leg
solved that the state re
jw capitol, which is to cost
It could be decided at the
ion to proceed with that
ce. (Chfeers.) The expen
1, million dollars here now
;ve a great portion of the
>rce of SU Paul and Min
nd the distribution of the
aid help tb restore confi
lusiness circles. I believe
crisis we have a right to
>urden upon posterity, or
ords, to borrow from the
wenty years from now the
country may be in a prosperous con
dition and be well able to pay bonds
which must be issued now.
Now what can be. done immedi
ately? The first thing necessary is
organization. I think we should
organize a central committee here
to-night composed of representatives
of each ward and each voting pre
cinct to collect facts as to the actual
number of persons out of employ
ment. Whatever is done for the
unemployed should be done in the
way of loans projected into the fu
ture, which will fall due in better
days than those in which we live.
And whatever is done should be
done peacefully, for a single drop of
blood shed would be a disgrace to our
civilization. He believed with
Thomas Jefferson that the country
could be made prosperous or de
pressed by legislation. He dwelt at
length upon the silver problem, and
said that by limiting the currency
to gold the value of gold was in
creased. It made money dear, and
when money became dear men be
came cheap. “In 1873 our miserably
corrupt or stupid congress shut the
door of the mint forever in the face
of silver from the silver mines of
America. What has been the con
sequence? From that hour to this
the property of the world had been
on the down grade and the troubles
and miseries of men had increased.”
Mr. Donnelly deprecated any allus
ion to political parties on such an
occasion as the present, but he was
strongly reminded that but a few
months ago we were in the midst of
an exciting political campaign. The
skies were illuminated with rockets
and bonfires, and the air was filled
with the music of brass bands and
promises. Before him was one of the
results: a tremendous gathering of
people—with their stomachs empty.
“Oh, what a lot of poor, God for
saken editors of daily newspapers we
have got in St. Paul,” he exclaimed;
“each one with a railroad president
behind it. These blind leaders of
the blind have led you into this
ditch. (Applause.) They have told
you that the Sherman act was the
cause of all your misfortunes.
(Laughter.) Why do not the infer- •
nal fools know that this calamity ex
tends over the whole world where
they never hear of the Sherman act?
The whole country is governed by
the newspaper press, and the newspa
per press is the mouthpiece of the
money power of the country. Nor has
the press any space for labor meetings
like this. In one paper I think I
saw a notice of this meeting of
about a finger’s breath.”
He concluded by moving that a
committee of twenty-five be appoint
ed, divided into wards, to collect in
formation in reference to the un
employed of the city and suggest
action for their relief.
The resolution was unanimously
I adopted.
Mr. H. A. Wallraff handed Mr.
Donnelly the following resolutions:
Resolved, That we demand a
sound and flexible currency, issued
by the general government only,
without interest charge, a legal
| tender for all debts public or pri
vate, to be put into circulation by
I instituting great public works at
once, and paying for the same in
such legal tender money; and be it
i Resolved, That should the United
j States congress decide to abandon
the use of silver as one of the mon
ey metals of this country by repeal
ing the Sherman law uncondition
ally, we demand that gold be de
Resolved, That we are in favor of
postal savings banks.
Resolved, That a copy of these
resolutions be sent to our represent
| atives in congress.
Mr. Donnelly moved that the fol
lowing be added to those already be
fore the meeting:
Resolved, That this great meeting
i of the unemployed labor of Ramsey
county, Minn., hereby affirm that
the calamities which afflict them
and afflict the whole world are due
to a conspiracy of the money powers
of the world demonetizing silver and
reducing it to one-half its former
Resolved, That we declare that
upon this question the newspaper
press of Minnesota does not repre
sent the people of Minnesota.
Resolved, That in our judgment
chambers of commerce are necessary
evils which should not obtrude them
selves into the domain of politics.
Resolved, That we serve a notice
upon our members and senators in
congress that if they vote for the re
peal of the Sherman act of 1890,
without at the same time repealing
the Sherman act of 1873, which de
monetized silver, that they need not
expect political support in the future
from those present at this meeting,
nor from the great body of the peo
ple of the state of Minnesota.
Arose as Mr. Donnelly was about to
submit the resolutions for adoption,
and requested the privilege of speak
ing to them, which was granted. He
opposed the adoption of the resolu
tions in a vigorous and forcible
speech, but the laboring men knew
what they wanted, and the resolu
tions were adopted.
Mr. Bantz moved thai(t it was the
sense of the meeting that a commit
tee of twenty-five members of the
Trades and Labor Assembly should
be appointed to act in obnjunction
with the committee appoiqeed by the
meeting. The motion carried.
A motion was next adopted author
izing the chairman to appoint a com
mittee of five to ascertain if the ex
penditure of SIO,OOO by the city for
the Hill celebration was legal, and if
not, to prosecute the guilty officials
at law.
The proceedings ended with the
adoption of a resolution to appoint a
committee of five to call on the gov
ernor and request him to call an ex
tra session of the legislature.
Bank Checks for Wheat.
Our friend, O. G. Lyman of Sauk
Centre, writes:
“Oppose the issuing of bankers’
checks to move the crops. Let us
have it out on the old lines. The
present conditions are opening the
peoples eyes in a wonderful way.”
We are always reluctant to give ad
vice to farmers as to what they should
do or should not do with their grain.
But it seems to me that men who
have crops— food —have real weath—
real value; because men must eat to
live. Hence nothing brought gold
back into this country this year but
the European demand for our food
crops. We have fallen upon terrible
times, and no man’s solvency is cer
tain ; and it would be wrong for the
farmers to part with wheat, meats,
etc., which have a world value, for
pieces of paper which may turn out
to be as worthless as dead forest
leaves. We would suggest that if
farmers are offered any kind of pa
per not money in payment for their
crops, they should go to those they
owe and say: “ Will you take that
paper without recourse to me ? ” If
the merchant or tradesman says Yes,
in the presence of a witness, before
delivering it to him write on the back
of it: “Without recourse to me,”
and write your name right under it;
and then take a receipt from the creditor
for so many dollars paid on account.
Then if the banker fails the farmer
will be out of the woods. If he owes
a non-resident on a mortgage, write
him and ask whether he will take such
checks, without recourse to him the
debtor. If he says yes, go through
the same form. Be sure to keep the
letters received, and copies of those
sent, as together they constitute a
Do not act “ ugly” in these trying
times. Be reasonable and just. Put
away enough food to carry you and
your family through to another har
vest ; have some good newspapers and
books to read in the long winter eve
nings; and thank God, in these aw
ful calamities, which afflict the whole
world, that you have a house over
your head and enough for you and
yours to eat. And don’t be disheart
ened. Things cannot continue as
they now are. They must mend
themselves; or there will come a
world-wide revolution which will
mend them. The human family can
not be permanently ruined to please
a few gold conspirators.
Keep a stout heart and maintain
friendly social intercourse with your
neighbors. Gather from time to
time and talk things over; and give
the women and children some enjoy
ment. Let intoxicating liquors
alone, if any of you are inclined that
way in your sorrows. They never
helped any man but the one who sold
them, and very seldom even him.
And above all, post yourselves; it is
the ignorant who become slaves.
I. D*
Ward McAllister says that Amer
ica is drifting toward a monarchy.
The wish is no doubt the father of
the thought. It is more than likely
that he aspires to be a prince. He
is already a prince of apes.—Ex.
The whole course of our politics
for the past twenty years has been
to breed Ward McAllisters and bring
on a monarchy. This country to-day
is a republic only in its forms. In
its essential spirit it is already a
money-aristocracy—ruled by an oli
garchy. The spirit of ’76 is as dead
as the men of ’76. I. D.
The Saloons.
In Norway there is a saloon to
every 5,000 thousand inhabitants.
In Svyeden there is a saloon to every
2,000; but in Denmark there is one
to every 200. The saloons of Nor
way and Sweden are conducted by
the “Bolag” and controlled by the
government—a system almost simi
lar to that in operation in South
Carolina, and it has met with suc
cess and has been satisfactory to the
people in both these countries. —Fer-
gus Falls Journal.
Yes; but the beautiful courts are
doing their best to destroy it. The
peoples party platform last year de
manded the Norwegian system for
this state. The saloons have no
principles. As a rule they and their
influences are for sale to the highest
bidder; and the highest bidder is al
ways the corruptionist and the
plunderer of the people; for having
stolen the fruits of labor they have
something to buy with. I. D.

xml | txt