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Homer Clevenger, M. A.
in the
The Democratic Party In 1688
Economic Basis for Agrarian Unrest
Agitation, Eduoation, Organization
Confederates and Bailroad Regulation
Young Democrats and F a r m e r s ..............161
Conservative Control and a Compromise
Program Bring D e f e a t ..............
* ♦ 111
The Liberal Revolt
• . •
. 210
............. 268
........................... 330
V i t a ..........................
The writer is indebted to Professor Elmer Ellis for
the suggestion that this study might be feasible, to
Professor Jbnas Viles for advice about sources for Mis­
souri history, and to Professor Herman C. Nixon for read­
ing the first draft and offering helpful suggestions.
Professor Lewis E. Atherton, who assumed the taslc of di­
recting the study after it was begun, the writer is espe­
cially grateful for patient, constructive criticism.
The willing, efficient service of the library staff
of the State Historical Society of Missouri made the work
of securing data from, its collection a pleasure.
The economic and social conditions which stimulated
the Missouri farmers to a more active participation in
politios were much the same as those which prevailed in
other sections of the country.
There were some variation^
Missouri was a step behind the older states of
the East and South in economic and social development but
less like a frontier state than those of the West,
protests of the Missouri farmers seemed to indicate that
agricultural interests in Missouri were a combination of
those in the South and West,
In the early stages of the
agrarian movement the West placed greater emphasis on
railroad regulation, and the South on an expansion of the
ourrency and a reduction
of the tariff.
Although there
seemed to be a debate in Missouri as to the relative im­
portance of the money issue and the tariff, the early em­
phasis was definitely placed on demands for more currency
and railroad regulation.
In the West the farmers* movement assumed the charac­
ter of a coalition between the Democrats and a third party
which seemed to draw its greatest strength from the Repub­
In the South the farmers* efforts to secure re­
lief through political action was more in the nature of a
bitter factional struggle within the Democratic party.
Missouri, as in the South, the movement was largely a fac­
tional struggle among Democrats, but was softened by the
desire of each faction to keep the Republicans from secur­
ing the state offices.
Since the third party which de­
veloped in Missouri tended to cooperate with the Republi­
cans in state politics, the softening influence was in­
Uhtil 1880 the desire to defeat the Republicans
seemed to restrain the ex-Confederate farmers, but after
1880 they began to demonstrate an increasing militancy in
party councils.
Prom that time the agrarian movement in
Missouri coincided rather olosely with the rise of the
farmer faction to power within the Democratic party.
reached a climax in the revolt of the farmer faction
against the conservative leaders in 1895 and in the elec­
tion of 1896.
The Democratic party which developed in Missouri
following the Civil War had but one cohesive factor, op­
position to the Republicans, or Radicals as they were
called during the seventies.
It began with a coalition of
former Whigs under the leadership of James S. Rollins,
William P. Switzler, and Silas Woodson, and Benton Demo­
crats led by Prank P. Blair and John S. Phelps.
been Union men during the War, they were not denied the
ballot, and enjoyed a prestige which the defeated Confed­
erates had lost.
After the suffrage restrictions were re­
moved in 1871, the Confederates, who can be classed as
anti-Benton Democrats before the War, flocked into the new
Along with them came many of the Liberal Republi­
cans with whom the Democrats had fused nationally and lo1
cally to try to overthrow the Radicals.
Thomas S. Barclay, The Liberal Republican Movement in
Missouri. 1865-1871 ((JoTumbia, 1926J, 14, 69, SO, ITT?;
William P.'“SwTtzTer, Illustrated History of Missouri
(St. Louis, 1879), 446; C. tf. McClure, 1fA Century of
Missouri Politics,” Missouri Historical Review, ZV
(January, 1921), aso-'gST; '"Columbia Missouri Statesman,
August 28 and 30, 1874. Some of the former Whigs had
been members of the American party in the early fif­
ties, but the Missouri membership probably did not
seriously accept all the doctrines of that party.
-2The former Whigs leaned toward a protective tariff,
a strong nationalist policy, the promotion of business in­
terests, a policy of internal improvements, and were not
displeased with the national banks established during the
Civil War.
The largest portion of them had been the
wealthy slave holding group in the counties along the Mis­
souri river and in the southeast part of the state.
an economic viewpoint they were much like the Republicans.
Their reasons for breaking with the Republicans can only
be guessed.
They might have conscientiously objected to
the proscriptions placed on the ex-rebels, disliked the
scandals and frauds in the state and national governments,
or resented the unrecompensed loss of their slaves.
The Benton, or Union Democrats, who came into the new
Democratic party represented primarily the business men in
the party before the V/ar.
They were not necessarily op­
posed to a nationalist doctrine nor were they unalterably
opposed to a mildly protective tariff.
They might object
to a national banking system and favor a money based on
metal, but their views in this respect were by no means
Their economic theories differed from those of
the Whigs in degree but were not in direct conflict.
of them, like the Whigs, had probably broken from the Re­
publican party because of the Constitution of 1865, a
Barclay, 276; Raymond D. Thomas, "A Study in Missouri
Politics," Missouri Historical Review, XXI (July, 19270,
--- ----------- ----------------
-3dislike for the tendency toward centralization, or opposition to reconstruction policies and frauds.
The re-enfranchised Confederates were almost as far
removed in their economic theories from the Whigs as they
were from the Republicans.
Representing generally the
poorer farm element in the same sections where the Whigs
were strongest, they had been political memies before the
Being state rights proponents they opposed the na­
tional bank system, believed in a tariff for revenue only,
and opposed all centralizing tendencies.
They were tradi­
tionally "soft" money advocates and claimed to be support­
ers of the rights of the common man.
In spite of their
dislike for the Whigs they hated the Republicans so much
that they came into the new party.
It is difficult to classify those Liberal Republicans
who became Democrats.
belonged to this group.
B. Gratz Brown, one of the leaders,
He had been a follower of Benton,
an advooate of compensated emancipation before the War, anc
a proponent of both ex-rebel and Negro enfranchisement
after the War.5
The Germans, the largest single element
Barclay, 91, 139.
Ibid., 91,
August 14,
August 14,
Barclay, 228.
175, 276; Columbia Missouri Statesman,
1878; John B. Henderson to James S. Rollins,
1878, Rollins Manuscript Collection, State
Society of Missouri, Columbia.
-4among the Liberals, as a general rule rejoined the Re­
The movement began and received much of its
strength in St. Louis, once a strong Benton stronghold.
Sinoe St. Louis also:furnished much strength to the Demo­
cratic ticket after 1872, the best guess is that those
who changed parties as a result of the movement were
Union Democrats who had reluctantly remained with the Rad­
icals in 1866 and 1868.and became Liberal Republicans
either in 1870 or 1872.**
The hatreds aroused by the Civil War in a border
state, where the line between the two sides could not be
marked by geographical boundaries, were not soon forgot­
The Republican proscription of the years 1865-1870
had not helped to mollify the feelings of the defeated
Confederates who returned home after the peace.
oreated a problem within the ranks of the Democratic party.
The Confederates, many of whom felt compelled to remain
away from towns between 1865 and 1870 because they dared
not retaliate for the insults and jibes from their former
enemies, seemed to find it difficult to distinguish be­
tween those Union men who were Democrats and those who
were Republicans*
In those counties which were strongly
Confederate, they tended to become a faction and to
The Liberals both
were opposed to a
dicate that there
Columbia Missouri
son Citv Tribune.
in 1871 and 1872 declared that they
high tariff. This would seem to in­
were not many ex-Whigs .among them.
Statesman, October 26, 1871; JefferJanuaryT 5 . 1 8 7 2 . _________________
proscribe the Union men in the party because of Civil War
Some of the Democratic newspapers and leaders, both
Union and Confederate, began in 1873 to plead for a burial
of all war hatreds to prevent the party from losing votes
and also to counteract the Republican attempts to split
the party on this issue.
James 0. Broadhead, an ex-Whig,
bolted the party because of local proscriptions in 1874
and William ]P. Switzler, editor of the Missouri Statesman.
threatened to do so.
By 1876, however, Switzler, report­
ed that there was little trouble over this practice in lo­
cal Democratic politics and criticized the Kansas City
Times for suggesting that Union men were nominated in the
state convention of that year with the assurance that all
the. Confederates would vote for anyone who was a Democrat.
Barclay, 192; Liberty Tribune. April 19, 1874; Columbia Missouri Statesman, October 2, 1874. Stories of
how ei-Confederates went to town in the early morning
of some day other than Saturday are still told in
some of the river counties on the west side of the
St. Louis Missouri Democrat, August 17, 1872; Trenton
Republican. January 2, 1873; Columbia Missouri
statesman, August 10, 11, 15, and 19, 1873; St. Louis
Missouri""Republican. January 22, 1875. A speech made
by Senator CocKrell in 1874 pleading for less pro­
scriptions because of Civil War hatreds was quoted in
the Columbia Missouri Statesman on March 26, 1880,
and August 27, 1654.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, August 19, October 2,
Ibid., July 15 and 28, 1876.
Since the first four governors after 1870 were Union
men, and the United States senators elected after that
time were former Confederates, it has been assumed that
there was an agreement between the two factions of the
Democratic party to divide the leading offices in this
This is probably true in a broad sense, but in
the state nominating conventions, during the time, both
Francis M. Cockrell, an ex-Confederate Major-General, and
George G. Vest, Missouri*s senator in the Confederate Con­
gress, had been candidates for the gubernatorial nomina­
Furthermore, in the legislative caucuses to nomi­
nate candidates for senators Union men appeared as serious
The situation was different in the two cases.
To elect a governor votes must come from the people, and
the Confederates, who were the majority and hated the Re­
publicans, would be less likely to bolt than the Union men,
The legislators, who elected the senators, would feel
bound to vote for the candidate selected in the party
If the Confederates detested the Union men, the Whigs
in the Democratic party despised the Confederates.
Francis M. Cockrell, an ex-Confederate, defeated Carl
Schurz, an ex-Union man, for United States Senator, James
S. Rollins, an ex-Whig leader, said it was a mark of un­
gratefulness to elect a third-rate country lawyer without
political experience or general culture,11
Probably many
of his followers whose theories of political economy were
so diametrioally opposed to those of the Confederates felt,
like him, that it would be calamitous for the "Bourbons"
to secure control of the national and state governments.
If the Liberals had been dominant in the Republican party,
many of the ex-Whigs and Union Democrats might have voted
with them, as Rollins did in 1880,
Unfortunately for the Democratic party the new issues
which arose after 1870 split it along the same line as
Civil War hatreds and prejudices.
This not only lent cre­
dence and strength to the Republican charges that the reb­
els were seeking revenge, but also forced the party to as­
sume a wavering attitude on many of the problems.
factions could agree on opposition to the policy of recon­
struction in the South, but this ceased to be an issue soar;
after 1876,
The money policy, national banks, payment of
James S. Rollins to Carl Schurz, January 20, 1875,
Letters of James S, Rollins to Carl Schurz in the
Microfilm Collection of the State Historical Society
of Missouri, Columbia, The originals are in the Carl
Schurz Collection in the Library of Congress.
Rollins to Schurz, July 31, 1874, June 9, 1879, Micro­
film Collection, State Historical Society, Columbia,
The Confederate faction in the Democratic party was
commonly called the Bourbon Democracy.
Rollins to Schurz, April 23, 1876, June 10, 1880,
February 2, 1881, Microfilm Collection, State Histori­
cal Society, Columbia, Rollins hints that many might
have done this.
-8the county bonds, and the promotion of business interests,
which involved the proposition of regulating railroads and
corporations, divided the party.
The Whigs were at one
extreme, the Confederates at the other and the Union Demo­
crats in the center, but more inclined in the direction of
the Whigs.
Although the money question had not been a dead is­
sue, the Resumption Act of 1875 revived it.
The Green-
baokers in 1876 demanded the repeal of both it and the act
which had demonetized silver.
The Democrats favored the
repeal of the Resumption Act when they elected delegates
to the national convention in that year, but the delegation
voted 20 to 9 to omit such a plank from the national plat­
They were willing to subordinate the money question
to the defeat of "Black Republicanism."
The general be­
lief that there was too little money was too strong, how­
ever, for this policy of expediency, and before the elec­
tion of 1878 the Democrats were forced to take a stand in
spite of the opposition of the Whigs in the party.
Jefferson City Tribune, August 10, 1876; Columbia
Missouri Statesman, May 9, 1876; J. A. Leach, "Public
Opinion and' the Ynflwhlon Movement in Missouri, 18751879," Missouri Historical Review, 2 X
1930), m
St. Louis Missouri Republican, June 2 and 26, 1876.
Leach, Missouri Historical Review, XX. . (April, 1930),
413-414; Collins to Schurz, September 24, 1878, Micro­
film Collection, State Historical Society, Columbia
A Democratic association in St. Louis demanded fiat
(Footnote continued to page 9.)
-9their state platform they condemned the national hank sys­
tem, demanded the issue of treasury notes, and expressed
the view that Congress alone should control the coinage.
The money issue ceased to he important in the few
years of prosperity which followed the passage of the
Bland-Allison Act and the resumption of specie payments
in 1879, hut the Missouri Democrats had made a happy dis­
A demand for free silver and opposition to the
national hank system would appeal to a large majority of
the Benton Democrats, and at the same time could he used
$o stop the loss of the extreme soft money advocates to
the third party.
Some of the Whigs might leave the par­
ty because of the unfriendly attitude toward the national
hanks hut any stand on the money issue would prohahly re­
sult in the loss of some voters.
The county and township railroad bond cases, which
stirred the people of the state during the seventies,
(CcnCLnued from page 8.) money early in 1878.
Louis Missouri Republican, March 8, 1878.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, July 12, 1878.
Since the membership of the third party remained
fairly constant hut the name changed often, it is im­
possible to find a name for them that will apply
throughout the period 1874-1896. In 1874, the name
was People's party; in 1876 and 1878 the Greenback
party; in 1880, 1882, and 1884, the Greenback-Labor
party; in 1886, the National party; in 1888, the
Union Labor party; and in 1892, 1894, and 1896, the
People's party.
created another problem for the Democratic party to solve.
Most of the bonds had been issued during the period 18651870 while the Confederates could not vote, and many were
issued fraudulently by so-called carpet bag or scalawag
courthouse rings.
The stories told about them closely
parallel those told of the looseness, graft, and fraud in
the state governments of the South during the reconstruc­
tion period.
When the Democrats came into power in 1870,
they refused to pay the interest on these bonds, and the
bond holders went to court to secure judgment.
When re­
dress could not be obtained in state courts, the cases
were appealed.
The United States Supreme Court ruled that
since the bonds were in the hands of innocent buyers the
interest and principal must be paid.
The people in many
of the heavily bonded counties re-acted by gathering in
mass meetings, denouncing the Court, talking of repudia­
tion, and threatening the lives of the county judges if
they levied the tax to make the payments.
In Cass County
a mob killed three men who were suspected of planning to
sell some of the bonds which had not been placed on the
In several cases county judges were placed in
jail for refusing to obey the
to levy
mandamus of a federal court
a tax to pay the interest.
As a consequence of
the unrest and the defiance of the law in some of the
counties, the payment of these bonds became an issue in
As early as 1874 a bill making fraud a bar to collec­
tion in state courts was passed by the Senate but failed
lnthe House.
In 1877 the counties were enabled to nego­
tiate compromises with the bond holders and refund the
debts at six per cent interest.
The legislature amended
this enabling act in 1879 so as to require the sanction of
a majority of the voters to such compromises.
the same session a law was passed which was intended to
give county judges a legal basis for refusing to pay the
County courts were required to pay bills out
of five separate funds, each of which must be filled from
the county revenue in consecutive order.
They were for­
bidden to pay the interest or principal of any indebted­
ness out of any fund except the fifth which might be small
because the others were filled first.
In practice this
law served only to give the county judges a choice of
which court, federal or state, should send them to jail.
Edward L. Lopata, Local Aid to Railroads in Missouri
(New York, 1937), TSTff. St. Louis Republican, July
19, 1878; Frank Wickizer, "A County Thirty Years in
Rebellion." Century. LXXIII (April, 1907), 928-936.
Laws of Missouri, 1879, 30th General Assembly (Jef­
ferson City, 18*79), 46-53; Lopata, 112, 117. Many of
the bonds bore interest at ten per cent.
Laws of Missouri, 1879, 191-193.
Floyd C. Shoemaker and others, Messages and Proclama­
tions of the Governors of Missouri, 1 2 volumes(Colum­
bia, 1^231^30 y. vlir; T67-175~. Governor Stone made
a remark to this effect.
-12Governor Phelps vetoed a bill passed by the legisla­
ture in 1879 which would have made resignations from coun­
ty offices effective upon their presentation to the county
On the assumption that resignation from office
would make them unable to obey the orders of the court
which then must release them from jail, this bill was
passed to provide county judges a means of defeating the
effectiveness of mandamus proceedings.
Governor Hardin in
1875, had blocked such a move by refusing to accept their
resignations until successors were ready to replace them.
Governor Phelps, in his veto message, pointed out the dan­
ger of the entire breakdown of government if officers
should resign and none take their places.
This General
Assembly also struck at the root of the trouble by follow­
ing a suggestion in the party platform the year before.
It adopted a joint and concurrent resolution asking the
Missouri congressmen and senators to introduce a bill
which would remove cases involving counties, towns, or
townships from the jurisdiction of federal courts.
This action by the state legislature and Democratic
convention gave the Republicans an opportunity to charge
that the rebels favored repudiation of debts, opposition
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VI, 125-131;
Lopata, 112.
Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedia, 1879, 645; Laws of
Missouri. 1579. S59-26&.
-13to the decrees ot federal courts, and a state rights docpc
trine which was renounced by the War.
The Union Demo­
crats and Whigs could not accept the doctrine of limiting
federal power and generally, though not always, counseled
that the debts be paid.
They argued that since the bonds
were issued, regardless of the manner or the honesty of
purpose, the judgments of the court must be heeded and
repudiation "not for a minute considered."
As county
after county made compromises with the bond holders, the
number was finally reduced so much that there was no long­
er any serious talk of repudiation, but the ill will
aroused was turned against the railroads which had been the
oause of the trouble.
One of the arguments for the quick settlement of the
bond cases was that talk of repudiation and.the sentiment
against paying legal debts would tend to keep business
Jefferson City Dally State Journal, July 23, 1878.
James 0. Broadhead, an ex-Whig, said that repudiation
was justifiable. St. Louis Missouri Republican,
July 19, 1878. Rollins was "sick and tired’1 of see­
ing the state ranged against the federal government.
Rollins to!Schurz, Microfilm Collection, State Historioal Society, Columbia. He had a personal as well
as a general theoretical reason. He was speculating
in these bonds, corresponding with the lawyer who was
trying the cases before the state Supreme Court, and
probably went so far as to call upon the Judges while
they had the cases under consideration. John B. Hen­
derson to James S. Rollins, January 20, 1877, Feb­
ruary 23, 1877, Rollins Manuscript Collection. For
the attitudes of T. T. Crittenden, John F. Phillips,
and the editor of the St. Louis Republic, all Union
Democrats; sees Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations
VI. 281-285i (Footnote continued to naae 14.)
14men and capital from migrating to the state.
The promo­
tion of business interests brought other conflicts between
the Confederate and Union factions.
The Confederates
might agree that the state would be more prosperous if
business enterprises were promoted, but they did not agree
that corporations and railroads should be given as much
freedom of action and tax exemption as the Union men ad­
As early as 1873 the Confederates began to talk
of the reduotion of railroad rates and the control of
Their attitude was so nearly like that of the
Grangers that the press commented on it at the time.
This inclination, combined with the influence of the
Grange, probably caused the inclusion of Article XII in
the constitution of 1875, which enabled the legislature
to regulate and control railroads.
Acting under this
provision, laws were passed which established a Board of
Railroad Commissioners, provided that freight rates should
be based on a pound-distance basis, and levied a tax on
railroad property.
In practice these laws were useless because the Rail­
road Commissioners had no authority to bring suit against
the railroads, and thus proved to be an advisory rather
than a supervisory board.
The board could draw up a
(Footnote 26 continued from page 13.) St. Louis Re­
publican, August 13, 1880; St. Louis Glote-Democrat,
March 3, 1893.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, July 4, 1873; Jefferson
City Tribune. May 13, 18737________ ._________________
schedule of rates, but the only recourse against the rail­
road was through a civil action brought by the aggrieved
Until experience should reveal the ineffective­
ness of these laws, the Union Democrats and Whigs, who
understood the situation, were satisfied, as were the oth­
ers who did not know, and the railroads continued to do
as they had always done.
When the short period of prosperity 1879-1880 came,
the Democrats had apparently been able to compromise on
the larger part of the new issues.
solved the money problem.
The rise in prices
Since most of the county bond
eases had been compromised, there was no talk of repudia­
tion nor attacks on the federal courts.
The difficulties
over the schemes to promote business had been adroitly
compromised by the passage of laws which appeased one fac­
tion but in practice did not hinder the other.
From the
standpoint of troublesome problems the future of the party
seemed bright.
Appearances were deceiving, however, because there
were several surviving and growing threats to a peaceful
The tariff which had ' been mentioned in the state
platform of 1876 would continue to grow in importance as a
disturber of harmony.
Civil War prejudices had been
The Revised Statutes of the State of Missouri, 1879,
2 volumes (Jefferson cTty, 1879), 17 145; Laws of
Missouri. 1875, 28th General Assembly (Jefferson
fiity, 1875}, 119-132.
-16subdued as much as possible, but the Republicans kept them
alive by exaggerating them upon every pretext.
The Grange
movement had subsided, but had left troublesome ideas and
attitudes among the farm element, which must be considered.
Last but not least the third party had proven too strong
in 1878 to be considered a negligible factor.
The Third party men almost defy analysis.
They were
primarily a farm group in Missouri with whom some of the
laborers of the cities joined.
Among them were ex-Confed-
erates, ex-TTnionists, Democrats, and Republicans.
were reformers by profession but protesters in practice,
and consistency was not one of their virtues.
In strong
Republican counties they fused with the Democrats, while
in strong Democratic counties they fused with the Republi­
They declared that the general government had no
right to interfere in state elections and said that the
supremacy of state over central government was incompatible
with their aims.
They were consistent, however, in de­
manding an expansion of the currenoy, attacking the na­
tional bank system, and demanding railroad regulation and
control in their platforms.
Because of the peculiar conditions in Missouri poli­
tics, they played a unique role.
The largest in number of
all the divergent elements in the Democratic party were
Edina National, November 6 and 12, 1897; Jefferson
City Tribune. November 28, 1873.
Being susceptible to the arguments of the third
party men and infected with Grange ideas and principles,
a eos$romise policy was necessary to please them and the
more conservative element.
Having recognized the danger
of the Granger movement as early as 1873, the Democratic
leaders made an unsuccessful bid for its support and
thereafter did not hesitate to adopt parts of its platform
of demands whenever circumstances seemed likely to cause
desertions from the party.
The Republican party was too small before 1880 to
hope to win state elections.
Its strategy was to build
up the party by fomenting trouble among the Democrats, and
to keep them, out of office by fusing with the Greenbackers
in those places where the Republicans had no chance to
In doing this they profited by the growing strength
of the third party and encouraged it whenever possible.
Being out of power in the state and knowing they would not
be responsible for carrying out a policy in state govern­
ment, they could avoid any stand in their platform which
opposed the third party ideas, and could center on opposi­
tion to the Democrats.
In the election of congressmen
they usually made an agreement with the Greenbakcers in
which the candidates promised to work with the Republicans
An account of an old third party man in California
Newspaper. August 29, 1895; Leach, Missouri Histori­
cal Review. 2ZIV (3Tuly, 1930), 573, 380.
-18in Congress on every thing except the money question.
success of their policy is indicated by the election of
one Greenback congressman in 1878 and four in 1880.
The election of these four Greenback congressmen was
not the only evidence of coming difficulties for the Demo­
Not the least of these was the reserve strength
of the opposition which the accompanying table seems to
The Democrats' majority had been cut more than
half, although they had brought out 8,000 more votes than
in 1876.
The Republicans and the third party had been
able to increase their strength by about 39,000 during the
period 1876-1880.
Since the Republicans supported the
third party ticket in 1874 and aa individuals seemed to
favor the Greenbackers more than the Democrats in 1878,
they might pool their strength at some future election.
If they should do this, the vote in 1880 showed that 9,000
Democrat bolters could take the state offices away from
the Democrats.
A compilation of precinct votes indicates that the
Greenback party, as the third party was commonly called at
the time, had become a well organized unit instead of a
collection of independent voters.
Except in the fifth
congressional district, where they tended to vote for
Leach, Missouri Historical Review, XXIV (July, 1930),
585; Atchison County journal, October 2, 1880, quot­
ing tEe St. Jo'sen'E H e r a l d S t . Louis Republican, No­
vember 9. 1880: St. Louis' Missouri Renupucan,
March 6> 1877._______
Vote for State Officers32
2,962 350,236
51,123 333,288
36,338 397,644
122 ,104
Richard P. Bland, Democratic candidate for Congress, and
James B. Weaver, Greenback candidate for President, the
number of ballots cast for their candidates was strikingly
the same.
As a well organized group it would be easier
for them to arrange a coalition with the Republicans to
defeat the common enemy.
There was a ray of hope, however,
Hapthose Democrats who feared the consequences of a future
Many Republican voters in the counties south of
the river apparently registered a serious protest against
the agreement of 1880 by voting for the Republican candi­
date for president but refusing to vote for a congressman.
State Almanac and Official Directory of Missouri for
1578 (Si. IjOu IsT~1878)I 4l: for l579 T§t. Louis,
1579), 82; Official Directory of Missouri for 1881
(St. Louis, i88l), 79; Switzler, 465. The Republicans had no: ticket in the field but supported the
third, or People’s party, in 1874. The vote cited
for 1878 is for Judge of the Supreme Court; the others
are for governor.
Official Directory of Missouri for 1881, 33-36.
-20There was a slight tendency to do the same thing north of
the river.
This opposition to a fusion policy was also shown in
some of the counties and districts when the proposition to
support a Greenback candidate came before the Republican
In the seventh district) a group of counties
just south of the river and a little to the west of the
center of the state, 53 out of 76 delegates to the conven34
tion voted to make a nomination of their own.
In the
sixth district, composed of a strip two counties wide and
six counties long, lying along the west part of the state
just north of the southern boundary, the convention voted
88 to 78 not to fuse and nominated a candidate who later
withdrew in favor of the Greenbacker.
The Chariton
County delegates declared in convention that they would
put a nominee in the field unless Joseph H. Burrows, the
Greenback candidate, pledged himself to vote with the Re­
publicans in Congress on everything except the money
St, Louis Republican, September 14, 1880. The Re­
publican party split on the policy of fusion in 1882.
The factions became known as the Silkstockings and
the Hoodlums. The Silkstockings seemed to be the
remnants of the Liberal Republican faction of 1870
and 1872. They aligned themselves with the HalfbXeeds in national politics. The Hoodlums who were
in control in 1880 were "bitter enders" for Grant in
the Republican national convention of that year. St.
Louis Republican, February 20, March 1, and Septemter 12, 1884.
Ibid., September 14, 1880.
Some of the Greenbaekers, especially those
who had been Democrats, opposed these deals which their
ex-Republican candidates made with the Republican party.
The evidence of dissatisfaction with the leadership
and a desire for a change in policy in the Greenback and
Republican parties would have been better news to the
Democrats, if evidences of the same thing had not been
present in their own party.
There were two well defined
and determined factions in the convention which met to
nominate candidates for their state ticket in 1880.
A one
time Liberal Republican, Charles F. Johnson, acted as tem­
porary chairman, and Willard P. Hall, a leading Union man
during the War, was elected permanent chairman.
The can­
didates selected were all Union men except two, and one of
these, Daniel H. McIntyre, shared their economic views.
Consistent with Democratic practice since 1872 there was
no debate in the convention on economic issues dangerous
to party harmony nor was there any mention of them in the
St. Louis Republican, September 12 and 18, 1880.
Ibid., September 3, October 11, 1880. See short
biographies of the four successful Greenback Labor
candidates in Official Directory of Missouri for
1881. 138-139.
St. Joseph Herald. July 28, 1880. A detailed account
of the convention is given in the St. Louis Republi­
can, July 22, 23, and 24, 1880. McIntyre later became a candidate for state office on the Gold Demo­
cratic ticket. St. Louis Republic, August 29, 1896.
platform in 1880.
The Union faction was merciless in handling cases of
disputed delegations.
Two delegations appeared from the
city of St. Ix)uis and from Cole, Lafayette, and Jackson
The conventions had split in each case over
the question of supporting Thomas T. Crittenden, a Union
man( or John S. Marmaduke, a Confederate, for the guberna­
torial candidate.
In each case the Crittenden candidates
were seated and Crittenden was easily nominated.
On the
nomination of other candidates, however, the debates were
heated, many ballots were required to make the choice, and
the vote was close.
It was in the troubles over the dele­
gations, debates on candidates, and the ballots for gov­
ernor that the issues were revealed.
These seemed to in­
dicate that the Democratic leaders would soon have serious
factional problems to solve.
Two factions were developing in St. Louis over local
politics and the tariff question.
An ex-confederate resi­
dent of St. Louis, John S. Marmaduke, who was a member of
the State Board of Railroad Commissioners and one time
editor of a farm magazine, was supported by the faction
whose delegates were refused seats in the state convention.
The Jackson County convention split over the support of
Official Directory of Missouri for 1881, 124-125.
st. Louis Republican, October 20, 24, and 28, 1880;
Columbia Missouri Statesman, May 21, 1880.
-23Marmaduke, and in the eighth congressional district, of
which Jackson County was a part, a number of delegates
bolted and placed an independent candidate in the field to
oppose John T. Crisp, the regular nominee.
Crisp was
charged with being a railroad lobbyist and with receiving
§13,000 for bribing a county judge to issue $300,000
worth of fraudulent bonds.
Both Cole and Lafayette
counties which sent two delegations had some railroad aid
bonds to .pay* as had nearly all the other counties which
voted for Marmaduke in the convention of 1880.
Some of
the counties in southeast Missouri probably voted for him
because that section was displeased with the faction in
the counties along the Missouri river which controlled the
party and secured all the offices.
The failure of John O ’Day, attorney for the St. Louis
and San Prancisco Railroad, to secure re-election as
chairman of the State Central Committee, as well as later
events seem to indicate that the anger aroused by the
county bond cases had now turned against the railroads.
Since the tariff issue was already dividing the party in
St. Louis Republican, August 2, 1880; Liberty Tribune,
‘August 30, October 25, 1880.
St. Louis Republican, July 28, 1880. See Lopata,
105, 107, Toe, T7T5",” 118, 123, for those counties
which had trouble with bonds, and the St. Louis
Republican. July 28, 1880, for those counties which
voted for Marmaduke in the convention. It is prob­
ably significant that there is a high correlation be­
tween these counties and the counties in which the
Greenback vote was greatest.---------------- .---------
-24St. Louis, and a demand for a tariff for "revenue only"
had been placed in the national platform, it could no
longer be ignored in state Democratic conventions.
indicated that control and regulation of railroads and
the tariff would become the immediate issues which would
re-open the factional differences along economic lines.
The Confederates had shown signs of revolt in their deter­
mined effort to assert themselves in the state convention,
and a strong St. Louis faction was rising which could ap­
parently agree with them, both on a candidate and a plat­
These straws in the wind pointed the direction of
the struggle for dominance which would likely characterize
the party’s history for the next few years.
The results of the election of 1880 had made the Re­
publicans hopeful.
The third party seemed to be well or­
ganized and disciplined.
As a consequence the political
Environment of the eighties would be different from that
of the seventies.
Old age and death would soon remove the
leaders whose earliest political training was in the era
Just previous to the Civil War, and in their places would
step a youthful group who had either been too young to
take part in the War or were born after it was over.
change of leadership, new issues, and other circumstances
would bring an end to "bloody shirt" campaigns, and eco­
nomic conditions would produce social unrest and still
other issues.
Out of the social unrest, agencies of agitar
tion and education were destined to rise and transform the
economic and political theories of the Confederate— farm­
er— or liberal faction of the Democratic party which was
so restive in 1880.
The period 1880-1896 In Missouri was marked by a so­
cial unrest which made itself felt in partisan politics.
At each election a third party appeared under a group of
leaders whose personnel changed but little, with a plat­
form of demands that was fairly consistent, but assuming
a different name almost every campaign.
A farmers* organi­
zation, the Farmers* Alliance, after a rapid growth, was
able to register a serious protest against the social and
economic order.
Powerful forces were at work which
aroused the voters from their ordinary indifference to par­
ty politics and governmental policies.
To determine those
forces which might have impelled voters to change parties
or to assume an increased activity in shaping the policies
of their own, it is necessary to examine the social and
economic environment in which they lived.
Since about 75 per cent of all voters ordinarily
cling to their inherited party, some powerful outside
force must be brought to bear before an individual will
change his habitual political reactions.
Loyalty to the
Charles E. Merriam and Harold F. Gosnell, The American
Party System (New York, 1929), 28._____________ _
family's traditional party, re-awakened and reaffirmed pe­
riodically by political campaigns, tends to stimulate ra­
tionalization of the party creed.
This rationalization
brings such a conviction of the rightness of the party’s
theories of political science and political economy that
conditions endangering the individual's economic status
are among the few things which will arouse enough doubt
to stimulate a re-examination of acoepted theories.
same conditions might incite an emotional attitude which
would manifest itself by voting against the party in of­
fice or in wresting control from the dominant faction of
the party.
Because of such possible reactions as a re-ex­
amination of party theories, voting against the party in
power, or seizing the control of party machinery, it is
neoessary to examine the economic environment in which,
or out of which, grew the agrarian unrest of the eighties
and the political revolt of the early nineties.
Since the farming class furnished the numbers, lead­
ers, and direction for the revolt, the analysis may be
limited to agricultural conditions.
The general economic
John D. Hicks, "The Birth of the Populist Party,"
Minnesota History, IX (September, 1928), 220; Fred E.
Haynes, Third P arty Movements Since the Civil War,
with special reference to Iowa (Iowa city, i51fc ), 200;
a large number of citations" might be listed, John R,
Commons and others, History of Labor in the United
States. 8 volumes (New YorK,*T918), II, 492, say that
the platform worked out by the Farmers' Alliance and
Industrial Union and the Knights of Labor at St, Louis
in 1889 was largely designed to benefit the farmers#
28condition of the Missouri farmer in the eighties resembled
that of his contemporaries in the Northwest and the South
as related by ?red E. Haynes, John D. Hicks, Herman C.
Nixon, Alex M. Arnett, and others.
The reactions of
the Missouri farmers differed somewhat from both of these
sections, however, because of specific variations.
political parties were arranged more like those of the
South while the economic interests of the farmers resem­
bled those of the West,
In social and economic develop­
ment Missouri was a step behind the older states of the
East and the South but was less like a frontier state than
Kansas or Nebraska,
During the decade of the eighties, Missouri was in a
transitional period.
Since 1820 the growth of the popula­
tion had been gradually slowing down in comparison with
the growth of the population of the United States.
every decade to the one ending in 1870, the population of
Missouri had shown a percentage of growth greater than
that of the United States as a whole.
After 1870 the rate
Fred E. Haynes, James Baird Weaver (Iowa City, 1919);
Haynes, Third Party Movements Since the Civil War;__
John D. Hicks,""The Populist 'Revolt-~(Minneapolis, 1931);
Herman c. Nixon, "The Populist Movement in Iowa,”
Iowa Journal of History and Politics, XXIV (January,
1926), ^-lC^TTixon, wEconomlc Basis of the Populist
Movement in Iowa.” Iowa Journal of History and Poli­
tics, XXI (June, 1925T7 373-3SS; Alex M. Arnett, The
?op'ulist Movement in Georgia (New York, 1922).
-29of increase began to fall behind.
The table below seems
to indicate that the population was becoming more stable
and that immigrants were passing Missouri by for better
opportunities elsetrhere.
The diminishing favorable bal­
ance between immigrants and emigrants might be explained
either on the assumption that more people were leaving the
state or that fewer were coming in.
Regardless of the
explanation, the condition allows the conclusion that Mis­
souri was ceasing to be a haven for the true frontiersman.
Percentage of Population Increase Over
Preceding Census5
1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900
236.7 110.9 173.2 77.2 73.3 45.6 ,26.0 23.6 16.0
32.7 35.9 35.6 22.6 30.1 25.5 20.7
Some interesting and significant conclusions may be
drawn, if the percentage of population growth is broken
down to county units.
Of all the counties bordering on
the Mississippi or Missouri rivers only one, Jackson,
shows a percentage of increase in 1880 over that of 1870
as high as that of the state as a whole, 45.6 per cent.
Supplementary Analysis of the Twelfth Census^ (WashingTion, 1906),
Thirteenth Census of the United. States, 1910, Popula­
tion. II. "15641
This can be explained by the rapid growth of Kansas
City during that decade.
-30Over the remainder of the statew&here are no outstanding
regional differences in the percentage of growth in popu­
It can he noted, however, that in those counties
south of the Missouri river the growth in population was
slightly more rapid.
In the next decade, 1880-1890, ten
counties actually lost in population.
All of these ex­
cept Johnson were river counties, and it was in the second
tier of counties south of the Missouri river.
The other
river counties, except Jackson and Buchanan, showed de­
cidedly smaller percentages of increase than in the preced­
ing decade.
This was also true generally of all those
counties north of the river.
Those south of the river
maintained, on the whole, their same percentage of in-
crease. .
The public land rapidly disappeared during the eight­
The fact that most of the public lands lay south of
the river probably accounts for the continued increase of
population in that region.
In 1879 land offices remained
open only at Boonville, Ironton and Springfield.
.three offices reported a total of 2,254,000 acres of
Sainte Genevieve, St. Charles, Warren, Howard, Johnson,
Platte, Andrew, Holt, Mercer, and Pike. Eleventh Cen­
sus of the United States, 1890, Population, I, 28-29.
These conclusions were drawn after calculating the per­
centages of increase. Eleventh Census of the United
States. 1890, Population, I, 28-2fl. The city of St.
Joseph is located In Buchanan County.
-31unclaimed land at the close of that year.
Within the next
six years all the land north of the river had been claimed
and the total number of acres open to settlers was re­
duced 40 per cent.
By 1892 the amount had decreased to
808,788 acres and five years later to 497,764*
The num­
ber of entries made each year during the eighties tended
to increase but the sales made by railroad companies de- 10
The unclaimed public land of the eighties was prob­
ably poorer in quality than that owned by the railroads
and land companies, but they demanded a higher price than
the settlers were able or willing to pay.
In 1885 two
railroad companies owned nearly 1,750,000 acres and land
companies owned about 500,000.
The largest portion of it
lay along the St. Louis and San Francisco Railroad which
ran southwestward across the state from St. Louis to
The remainder lay in the extreme southeast
and southwest comities.
Most of the land was offered for
sale at prices ranging from one to ten dollars per acre*
Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of Labor StaT O i r » * T IBW TTeTTeraon ~5'Itv. lSSO) . ^ T T S g S ^ TefTerso'n Ci‘EyT'1886), 177ff; 1897 (Jefferson City,
1897), 224-225; Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia, 1893,
449. Unclaimed acres in l£8'5: 1,345,000.
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Real
Estate Mortgages, 4^, 40. Landentries made each
380; 849; 754; 969; 833; 775; 1,053;
1,049; 1,313; 1,644.
Sales made by railroads: 2,240;
1,376; 953; 457; 223; 221; 170; 180; 154; 163.
-32The buyers could usually secure possession with a small
initial payment and a mortgage bearing 7 per cent interest
for the balance due*
Although the acreage held by railroads and land com­
panies in 1885 appears to be large, only 16,892 farms of
the average size in 1880 could have been carved from it*
Erom the remaining public lands in 1885, 10,402 farms
could have been made but in 1892 there was room for only
Assuming that the corporations had sold no land
since 1885, the number of average sized farms in Missouri
in 1892 could not have been increased by 6 per cent.
The decreasing number of acres per farm previous to 1880
and the increasing percentage of land in cultivation also
indicated that expansion as a farming section was rapidly
coming to an end.13
Eighteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
Agriculture. 1655 (Jefferson dlty, 1885), l?6ff. The
report had all the earmarks of a real estate agent’s
prospectus. The St. Louis and San Francisco Railroad
held 1,665,195 acres; the St. Louis, Iron Mountain,
and Southern, 67,967; the South Missouri Land Company
of Kansas City, 90,000; the Ozark Plateau Land Com­
pany of Lebanon, 150,000; the Ozark Land Company of
St. Louis, 100,000. The Missouri Land and Live StocKCompany failed to list the number of acres held. The
total reported was 2,183,163.
There were 238,043 farms in Missouri in 1890. Twelfth
Census of the United States. Agriculture, I, 3 1 0 . T &
in both 188(3 and 1890 was 129.3 acres.
Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of
Labor statistics and Inspection, 1902 (Jefferson City*
Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of
Labor statistics and inspection <1I9l?2, 6b. __________
-33A further array of evidence might be adduced to show
that the frontier was rapidly passing in Missouri.
the close of 1879 there were twenty-seven counties with­
out railroads, all but two of which were south of the riv­
By 1880 only twenty-two counties, all south of the
river, had no railroad, but by 1891 the number was reduced
to eleven.
The 4,234 miles of railroads in 1880 had in14
creased to 6,118 in 1889.
With the growth of the rail­
roads, there was a corresponding increase
and size of towns and cities.
in the number
There were fourteen cities
with over 4,000 people at the census of 1880 and seventeen
with populations ranging above 5,000 in 1890.
these the census of 1890 showed twenty-seven cities from
2,500 to 5,000 and 365 incorporated villages and towns
under 2,500.
The increase in the number of towns and the railroad
mileage not only made it easier for the farmer to reach
markets with his produce but it also gave him better access to services and supplies.
The number of banks more
14.- Combined Fifth and Sixth Reports of the Missouri
RailroacT Commissioners, 1879 and T£80 (St. Louis,
1&81). 4: Sixteenth Annual fteport, 1890 (Jefferson
City, 1892). 6: fourteenth Annual Report of the Bu­
reau of Labor Statistics and Inspection, 1892 (Jerferson city, 1892), Si.
Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910, Popula
tion, I. 57; Tenth census, 1880,""Population, xxx.
The population of Missouri was 74.8 per cent rural
in 1880, 68.0 in 1890, and 63.7 in 1900. Thirteenth
Census, 1910, Population, II, 1065-1066.
34than doubled and the horse power of steam engines used in
manufacturing increased 91.75 per cent during the eight16
The St. Louis Republic pointed with pride to the
rapid development of business as indicated by the~5,376
manufacturing, commercial, and mining corporations, 352
building and loan associations, and 29 insurance companies
in the state in 1891.
Such data cannot be interpreted
as an indication of prosperity for everyone, because the
per capita wealth failed to keep pace with the other de­
velopments and the farmers* financial difficulties kept
him in a state of unrest throughout the eighties.
The farmer*s discontent of the eighties and his re­
volt from his traditional party affiliations in the early
nineties has been explained in part by the Turner thesis.
The restless and discontented could no longer moveWest.
The unlucky farmer who lost his farm could not solve his
problem by moving his family and few personal belongings
to a new frontier.
The oppressed of the city no longer
had the alternative of leaving the city and taking up
Under the circumstances, a vent for dissatisfaction
found in agitation, third party politics, or "boring
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Manufac­
turing Industries, £art I, ?55“ There were 219 banks
in 1880 and 447 in 1890.“ Report of the National
Monetary Commission, compiled by A. Piatt Andrews,
senate Document No." 570, 6lst Congress, 2nd Session,
St. Louis Republic, January 14, 1891.
Eleventh Census of the United States, Wealth, Debt,
and Taxation, Par¥ II, 14.
35from within" the old parties.
The conditions which
would bring about these reactions existed in Missouri.
1879 it was no longer easy for a bankrupt farmer or a dis­
satisfied laborer to acquire a farm.
It was necessary to
have $277 capital outlay to establish a farm enterprise as
an owner in the average country and in some counties as
much as $1,500 was required.
The passing of the frontier, however, involved more
than the disappearance of the public lands.
There was a
transformation in life on the farm and in the business of
While transportation facilities were increasing
and towns and villages were springing up near his door,
the farmer was acquiring tastes and desires that made new
demands on his cash income.
The large increase in the
number and the reduced cost of those things designed to
Hicks, Populist Revolt,72, 95, cites a number of
contemporary articles. Hicks, "Third Party Tradition
in American Politics," Mississippi Valley Historical
Review. XX (June, 1933), 13-14; Frederick Jackson,
burner. The Frontier in American History (New York,
1921), 2 7 ^ 2 5,l T W a n k'T. Mcfreyr"!PSeTopullst Move­
ment," Economic Studies of the American Economic As­
sociation, 1 (189(3), Mo
1§8 •
First Annua],Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics,
1879 (Jefferson city, 1880), 50. TEe name of this Bu­
reau is misleading since it collected other data than
that affecting labor. Hicks, Populist Revolt, 72,
and McVey, 158, say that the farmers throughout the
West sensed the loss of the security which the public
land gave them in times of financial distress.
adorn the home or make a display among his neighbors
tempted the farmer to spend his money.
Curtains, car­
pets, and wall decorations were rapidly becoming necessi­
ties in Missouri farm homes by 1883.
Pianos and organs
were purchased by those a little higher in the financial
scale, and buggies and carriages were not at all uncommon
in 1888.
Besides the things which might be placed in the
luxury class, the farmers were also buying sewing machines,
steam washers, and many other labor saving devices to
lighten the farm wife*s drudgery.
One conservative contemporary writer sarcastically
said that for a long time the farmer had an abundance for
his farm standard of living.
"Now he thinks the govern­
ment has made it possible for others to have more than he
.... He wants his share."
Another advised the farmer
to live within his means, and remarked that books, travel,
magazines, music, and education were for those who could
afford them.
The significance of the opinion of these
A. H. Peters, "The Depreciation of Farm Lands." Quar­
terly Journal of Economics, IV (October, 1889), 27.
Seventeenth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
Agriculture for 1583 (Jefferson City, 1684)', T41-T49;
Twenty-first Annual~*Report, 1888-1889 (Jefferson City
£6-56: Twentieth Annual R eport, 1887^1888 (Jefferson
City, 1868), 4 5 2 - 4 5 6 . Speeches made before Farmers*
Frank M. Drew, "The Present Farmers* Movement," Polit­
ical Science Quarterly, VI (June, 1891), 509.
F. Emerick, "An Analysis of Agricultural Discon­
tent," Political Science Quarterly, XII (March, 1897),
101-105... - "
contemporaries is that the farmers* wants had increased
and that he needed a larger cash income to satisfy them.
Not only was there a change in farm life, but with
the invention of machinery and the discovery of new manu­
facturing processes the farmer lost a market for some of
his products and
ceased to produce some of his own neces­
Tallow and grease were displaced for lighting
purposes by the kerosene lamp.
Cotton seed oil products
competed with lard and butter among the laboring classes
of the city.
The use of electricity and cable cars for
transportation purposes in the city decreased the demand
for both horses and feed.
Factory canning, which began in
1878 and made it no longer necessary for the farmer to
produce and preserve all his food, was but one of the many
pioneer household arts which were being or had ,been com25
mere iali zed.
While pioneer farming Was a way of life in which the
products of labor were primarily for family consumption,
the increasing necessity or desire for things that could
not be produced on the farm forced the farmer to produce
primarily for the market.
This basic desire for a larger
McVey, Economic Studies, I, No. 3, 136; Emerick, Po­
litical'Science Quarterly, XI (December, 1896), 622623: Hicks.Mississippi Valley Historical Review, XX
(June, 1933), 14-18; A.
Schlesinger, The R i s e of
the City (New York, 1933), 132; Herman C. Nixon,
■"TEelTCeavage within the Farmers’ Alliance Movement,"
Mississippi Valley Historical Review, XX (June, 1926),
r r - 231.
-------- -----------------------
38cash income, which could most easily he secured by increas­
ing the acreage of crops, probably esplains the farmers*
eagerness to invest in machinery.
With the introduction
of farm machinery into general use, farming became
mercial enterprise.
a com-
One contemporary, writing forty-five years afterward,
says that the self-binder, sulky plow, disc harrow, and a
dozen other farm machines were being popularized by manu27
facturers in the early eighties.
An examination of the
files of any farm magazine of the eighties confirms his
statement and lends credence to his remark that the adver­
tisement of farm madhinery almost paid for the cost of
publishing farm magazines.”' To secure these labor sav­
ing devices, Missouri farmers more than doubled their ag­
gregate investment in them in the period 1870-1900.
doing this their capital outlay in farm machinery per acre
of land in production was increased over 50 per cent.
Louis Bernhard Schmidt, "Some Significant Aspects of
the Agrarian Revolution in the United States,” Iowa
Journal of History and Politics. XVIII (July, 1920),
3^1-395:“Bicks, Mississippi Valley Historical Review,
XX (June, 1922), 14-16.
John M. Stahl, Growing Up with the West (New York,
1930), 89.
Ibid.. 96.
Twelfth Census of the United States, 1890, Agricul­
ture. I. 695. 6^7.
39Although the farmer was enabled to avoid much of the
back-breaking labor necessary to produce his crops, some
of the new machines did not necessarily add to his profit.
The sulky plow and the riding cultivator were more expen­
sive but probably did not increase the amount of work done
Many of the machines, however, greatly
reduced the number of man-hours necessary to cultivate and
harvest the crops.
The introduction of the twine binder
and the new threshers during the eighties displaced five
men in each of these operations.
The expense of produc­
tion was probably reduced, if an allowance is made for the
farmer*s own labor; but, since much of the work had been
done in cooperation with his neighbors, he was forced to
increase his working capital.
This hot only drove him to
consider production costs in terms of money but also caused
him to search for the means of increasing his net profits.
The simplest way to do this was to increase his acre­
age in proportion to the increasing amount of work he
could do or to produce more per acre by working more
United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor
Statistics, "Mechanization of Agriculture as a Factor
in Labor Displacement," Monthly Labor Review, XXXIII
October, 1931), 757. The number of man-hours of
labor t o 'produce an acre of c o m was reduced from
188.68 to 27.5 in the period 1850-1894. During the
same time the reduction in wheat was from 62.42 to
3.9 and in hay from 21.08 to 3.1.
Leo Rogin, The Introduction of Farm Machinery and Its
Relation to^TEeTroducil'oir"qT~Farm~La5or (Berkeley,
1931), 139, 189.
Since the rate of increase in the production
of eight of the leading farm products in the United States
was twice as fast as the increase in the population from
1870 to 1890, there seems to he some evidence that the
production per farmer in the country as a whole was en32
hanced by both of these means*
In Missouri, however,
the average farm decreased in size during the seventies,
remained the same during the eighties, and continued the
downward trend in the nineties*
It was not an easy mat­
ter to increase the size of land holdings when each farmer
probably had the same urge or when those who had land for
sale were asking a price based on the accruing unearned
increment during the early eighties.
When the price of
land began to fall in the late eighties, money was soarce
and interest high.
Instead of acquiring more land the
Calculations made from Twelfth Census of the United
States, 1900, Population, 1, xix; Agriculture, H ,
Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
Labor Statistics and Inspection', '1902. 66. "
Frank Basil Tracy, "The Rise and Doom of the Populist
PSrty," Forum, XVI (October, 1893), 242-243; Emerick,
Political Science Quarterly, XI (December, 1896),
665; W. F. Mappin, ’^arm Mortgages and the Small
Farmer,” Political Science Quarterly, IV (September,
1889), 43S-433';"TFIoyd C. Shoemaker and others, Mes­
sages and Proclamations of the Governors of the State
or m i ggnYrpi , 32 volumes (Columbia, 1922-1930) ,~vT^
3^9: Fourteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau
of Labor statistics and Inspection, 1892 (Jefferson
SIty, 1893), 204.
Missouri farmer manifested his urge to increase his acre­
age by keeping and bringing into cultivation a few more.
of the acres which he held.
Since the average yield of
corn,wheat, and oats per acre did not increase in Missouri
during the period, the production per farmer probably did
IZ 0
not keep pace with that of the country as a whole.
As the desire for a larger cash income and the intro­
duction of machinery tended to make farming more and more
like a commercial enterprise, the farmers became sensitive
to the variations in gross income.
If insect invasions or
drought decreased their yields, they became discontented
and restless.
A sudden drop in prices made them
Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau
of tabor Statistics and Inspection, l902, 56; Tracy,
forum, XV jC (October, 169&). 242-243; Drew in Politi­
cal Science Quarterly, VI (June, 1891), says that
some farmers were making a desperate effort to apply
methods suited to large scale production to the small
fields which they had once cultivated without the new
machinery which was being introduced.
F. B. Mumford, "A Century of Missouri Agriculture,”
Missouri Historical Review, XV (January, 1921), 287.
Yields of corn per acre for the years 1878-1895?
26.2, 37.0, 28.4, 16.5, 29.5, 27.5, 33.0, 31.3, 22.2,
22.0, 31.0, 25.8, 29.9, 27.7, 27.9, 22.0, 36.0. The
statistics for wheat and oats confirm the conclusion
that the Missouri farmers were unable to increase
their yield per acre.
John D. Barnhart, "Rainfall and the Populist Party in
Nebraska," American Political Science Review, XIX
(August, 1925), 5M-5%T.
One of the common complaints at the time
was that farmers were cheated by the annual dip in the
price curve at harvest time.
Although a contemporary
economist demonstrated that the monthly variations over a
long period of time were the natural result of interest
and storage charges, the farmers were not satisfied.
Explanations neither satisfied their wants which had grown
faster than their incomes nor prevented their incomes from
A fairly reasonable conception of the variations in
farm income over a period of years can be obtained by com­
paring the annual cash values per acre of different crops.
These values, derived by multiplying the average price per
bushel by the average production per acre, eliminate the
danger of concluding that "times were good" because prices
were high or that "times were bad" because production was
The fluctuations in income which resulted from price
and production variations probably contributed to the
farmers* exasperation and unrest during the eighties.
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 91; Arnett, 93, 169; Cali­
fornia Newspaper, October 10, 1889, quoting the View,
a newspaper wnose place of publication was not men­
tioned; Twenty-second Annual Report of the Missouri
Board of Agriculture, 18&9-T890 (Jefferson City,
15901 .""5T57: Shoemaker. Messages and Pr o clamations,
VII, 176-177; Edward W. Bemis, "The Discontent of the
Parmer," Journal of Political Economy, I (March,
1893), 301771
Bemis, Journal of Political Economy, I (March, 1893),
201; Hicks, PopuTl'st Revolt, 100.
There are limitations on the conclusions that may he
drawn from data which shows the average income per acre
in a large area.
In the table below the drought year 1881
has the appearance of a profitable year, but such was not
the case.
Since the farmers had to keep some of their
products to feed work and brood stock, the surplus which
they could sell was decreased.
Under the circumstances,
they could not profit from the rise in price.
Since many
Missouri farmers marketed their crops by feeding them to
livestock, the Income per acre does not accurately reflect
their actual income.
Despite these limitations and com­
plications, it seems reasonable to conclude that there
were annoying variations in the farmers* incomes from year
to year.
The downward trend throughout the whole period,
1879-1896, was probably more dangerous to their economic
welfare than the annual variations.
The Missouri Board of Agriculture reported that the
cattle business was "at its lowest ebb for many yeard'
in 1887. Both 1886 and 1887 had been bad corn years.
Twentieth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of Agri­
culture . 186^-158^3 (Jefferson City, 1 8 8 8 132.
droughts are local in nature even within a state. A
resident of Boone County in 1881 told tk'=! writer that
the corn crop was a complete failure in that year.
He said that his father had anticipated feeding a
herd of late farrowed pigs but was forced to kill
them. The number of beef and dairy cattle in Mis­
souri had nearly doubled in the seventies and con­
tinued to increase in the eighties. Statistical Ab­
stract of the United States, 1895 (Washington, 1894),
315, 3SF7 Missouri ranked among the first three
states in hog production in 1890.
Average Yield, Farm Price, and Value Per
Acre for Missouri, 1879-1896Corn
per per
bu. Acre
per per
bu. Acre
Value bu.
In 1880 the average net income of 187 farmers,
who answered a questionnaire for the Missouri Bureau
of Labor Statistics, was $600.
They probably failed to
list rent on the home or the cost of the products con­
sumed by the family as income, but since the average size
of their farms was three times that of all the farms in
the state, farmers* incomes must have been low.
In 1893
the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that farmers
had ”borne most of the depressing influences of the
Munford, Missouri Historical Review, XV (January,
1921), 28Tl The values per acre were calculated.
past decade."
The Missouri Board of Agriculture also
confirmed the observation.
C. S. Walker, a contemporary
who studied farm incomes, said that the average farmer
over the country received less for manual labor and super43
intendence than any other class of people.
C. F. Emerick, a conservative economist who wrote about the farm­
ers* discontent, admitted that the sharp unexpected de­
cline in prices, which would not be met with a reduction
of costs, had "inflicted serious losses on the producers."
In this period of declining prices and small incomes
there was one saving circumstance for the farmers.
prices of all goods were declining at the same time.
Second Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of Labor
Statistics. '188Q (Jefferson dlty, 1581)7 ESsTTMjteenth AnnuaTTEeport of the Bureau of Labor Statis­
tics ancl inspection, TEfeS (Jefferson city, 1655), 1011. tfhe average size'offarms reported was 447 acres.
The operators of small farms did not cooperate by
answering the questionnaire upon which the Bureau
based its estimates.
C. S. Walker, "The Farmers * Movement," Annals of the
American Academy of Political and Social Science, IV
THarch,' lS'fflf, 79(57
Emerlck, Political Science Quarterly, XII (March,
1897) , 114. ''During the period 1799-1937 the total
income from agriculture in the United States failed
to keep pace with the total private production in­
come. The downward trend of agricultural income in
comparison with the whole was accelerated during the
eighties. The total private production income in­
creased more than 44 per cent while the income from
agriculture increased less than 11 per cent. Robert
F. Martin. National Income of the United States,
1799-1938 (UewTo'fE, 1939) ,T2-64.
suffered some loss, however, because the fall in the price
of farm products generally preceded that of other goods.45
Farm machinery and implements were among the few types of
goods which did not follow the general pattern.
In terms
of bushel* of wheat, oats, or corn, a mowing machine, bind­
er, or cultivator could be bought for less in 1892 than in
The loss resulting from the failure of the price
ourves to coincide was probably much smaller than that
caused by the general downward trend of prices.
This was
especially true for those farmers who were forced to bor­
row money.
Those who borrowed for operating expenses
probably suffered less than those whose debts were secured
by mortgages.
The general decline in prices expressed in terms of
the rising value of the dollar is given in graphic
form by Arnett, 69. Hicks, Populist Revolt, 88, re. prints Arnett*s graph. Wholesale Prices, Wages, and
Transportation, report by kr. Aldrich from tne com­
mittee on finance, Maroh 3, 1893, Part I, Senate Re­
port 1394, 52nd Congress, 2nd Session, 93, 105-107;
Emeriek in Political Science Quarterly, XII (March,
1897), 106, says that only in the periods 1840-1853,
1876-1880, and 1883-1890 were agricultural prices
lower than general prices. From this he concluded
the farmer, as a rule, paid low prices when he re­
ceived low prices. He might have concluded that in
the fifteen-year period, 1876-1890, the farmer paid
higher prices than he received every year except two.
Bemis, Journal of Political Economy, I (March, 1893),
208; Wholesale Prices. Wages, and Transportation,
Senate’ Sepor'f“l3§4, 52nd Congress, 2nd Session, 99,
135-109; Coinage q* Gold and Silver, House Report^
3967, Part , ols’F ”Congress, 2nd Session (Washington,
1891), 330.
47As prices went down, the number of bushels of farm
products necessary to meet the mortgage and interest in­
This had the effect of enlarging the size of the
mortgage and the rate of interest*
With the general fall
in the prices of land the owner *s equity decreased and the
farmer, who was once confident that he could keep his
home, was filled with fear.
How many lost their farms
through foreclosure during the eighties and early nineties
would be a difficult question to answer*
At any rate the
foreclosure of mortgages was common enough to receive at­
tention in the literature of the time.
The St. Louis Re­
publican printed a cartoon in 1888 showing an eastern
capitalist leading a long line of chained and handcuffed
farmers into a courthouse upon which was the sign, "Farm
Mortgages Foreclosed Here."
In farmers* institutes
sponsored by the Missouri State Board of Agriculture,
speakers told of farmers being "sold out lock, stock, and
barrel" and called attention to the increasing number of
farms owned by "lawyers and city officials."
The circumstances attending the growth of farm owner­
ship among "lawyers and city officials" must have varied,
St. Louis Republican, March 13, 1888.
Nineteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
Agriculture." W 6 - T 5 5 7 T 3,e?ferson o K y T l B S T T T 4304ol; Twenty-tEird Annual Report of the Missouri Board
of Ag'T'tg”1t.nrc, 1890-1851 (Jefferson City, 1891),
but no doubt many were secured because of forced sale.
At any rate farm tenancy increased from 27,31 per cent in
1880 to 31,05 per cent in 1890,
This increase of 3.74 per
cent for the state was unevenly distributed among the coun­
In five counties the percentage of farmers who were
tenants decreased while in eleven counties the increase
ranged from 10 to 15 per cent.
The increase was greatest
in the extreme southeast and southwest and least in the
northeast counties.
Since there was a high correlation
between those counties where tenancy increased and those
in which the greatest number of mortgages were filed dur­
ing the eighties, it seems logical to conclude that the
practice of mortgaging farms contributed to the growth of
farm tenancy.
Although the percentage of mortgaged acres in Missou­
ri was not as great as in some of the neighboring states
in 1890, there had been a steady increase in farm mort.
gages throughout the eighties in all but five counties.
As a class, the farmers in Missouri were steadily going
deeper into debt.
The number of mortgages made in 1890
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Farms and
Somes, fco5-S5"6: EeaTHCstate and Farm Mortgages, g 2 U ^
Missouri 25.41 per cent, Kansas 60,32 per cent, Ne­
braska 54,73 per cent, Iowa 46.95 per cent, Illinois
30,78 per cent. Eleventh Census ^f the United States,
1890. Real Estate~ahd Farm“HortgagesTT23.
Fourteenth Annual Report of the Mlssouri Bureau of
Labor Statistics and Ins’
pect lon , 1892, 294.
49was 33.24 per cent more than the number made in 1880.
increase in the amount of the mortgages was 106.24 per
The increase was more rapid than in Iowa, Illinois,
or Kansas but less than in Nebraska.
The per capita
debt incurred each year in the period ranged from $11 in
1860 to $31 in 1890.
Thirty-six per cent of the farms
operated by the owners had been mortgaged for 32.28 per
oent of their yalue in the latter year.
In this same
year, the total mortgage debt on farm lands was equal to
13.91 per cent of the true value of all farms in the
* 4. 5 5
An analysis of the objects for which the mortgage
debt had been incurred showed that 66.26 per cent of the
indebtedness was a result of real estate purchases.
borrowed to improve the farm accounted for but 2.9 per
cent, and the purchase of personal property, including ma­
chinery and domestic animals , comprised but 2.51 per oent
of the total.
But little credence can be given to the
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Real
Estate and Earm Mortgages, 95.
Ibid.. 190.
ISSff: $11,
$26, $31.
Ibid., Farms and Homes, 37; see also Diagram 9
opposite p. 67.
Ibid.,RealEstate and Farm Mortgages , 118.
Ibid.,Farms and Homes, 152-153.
Per capita debt incurred by years 1880$15, $17, $19, $18, $20, $27, $27, $37,
contention of the time that the Missouri farmers mortgaged
their farms to pay taxes, meet expenses, establish their
eons in business, or to buy the necessities of life.
The same analysis mentioned above revealed that only 2,66
per cent of farm mortgages had been incurred to pay ex­
penses and 2,91 per cent to care for other unclassified
The holders of small bodies of land probably were
bearing the most of the indebtedness.
In 1692 the average
mortgage debt was well under $1,000 and the average size
of mortgaged farms in the state was 99 acres.
In 1890,
71,11 per cent of the mortgages were under $1,000 and
24,75 per cent were between $1,000 and $5,000,
poorer counties in the south central part of the state
carried the least average mortgage debt and the smallest
per capita debt.
The debt of the richer central counties
was much more than that of the southern part of the state
in 1892, but, during the period 1880-1890, the number of
mortgages filed in the southern counties was larger than
Eighteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of
Lapor Statistics and inspection, 1896, ?04; Nljigieenth 'Annual Report of nhe Missouri Board of Agri­
culture, 1 5 8 6 - 1 8 6 43S-43T; Mappin, Political Sci­
ence Quarterly, Iv (September, 1889), 444-446;
Peters, Quarterly Journal of Economics, IV (October,
1889), BB.
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Real
ilsiate and ffarm Mortgages, 94-75,
in the central counties.
In that decade the correlation
between the increase in population and the number of mort59
gages filed was remarkable,
Farm Mortgage Indebtedness in Missouri 1892
Amount of
on Farm
Size of
Farm (A.)
Many investors in the East loaned money with the idea
that the unearned increment would make the security better
This basis of security resulted in too little care in the
placing of loans and even resulted in loan agents resort­
ing to the wiles of salesmanship to induce farmers to mort6l
gage their property.
There was one opportunity for the
Eleventh Census of the United states, 1890, Real
Estate and Farm mortgages,"550-337j P o p u I a t i o n l ,
Fourteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
labor Stai'lstTcs~and Inspection, 1892,503-231,^90.
A correction of $>14,901,o7§ is made in the state
total because of a sudden rise in mortgages in Jack­
son County due to a land boom.
Emeriek, Political Science Quarterly, XI (December,
1896), 6041' 605: llappln. "EollticaT science Quarterly,
IV (September, 1889), 438-459: Hicks, Populist/Revolt, 22, cites a number of sources.
-52farmer to profit from this situation. He could secure a
mortgage loan as a means of sale.
There was also a dan­
Easy credit would tempt the prospective borrower to
go too deeply into debt or to mortgage his farm to buy
something which his circumstances would not justify.
Although the decreasing price of farm land tended to
reduce the mortgagor’s equity, it caused him no immediate
problem except at renewal dates.
The payment of interest,
however, was an annual charge upon his income.
For those
who had contracted mortgages the descending prices of the
period drove interest up in like proportion.
The farmer
who could pay his interest with an average of 100 bushels
of wheat per year in the first half of the eighties found
that it required 128 bushels to meet the obligation in the
last half.
Interest rates in contracts in Missouri were legal up
to 10 per cent until 1891, at which time the legal con64
tract rate was reduoed to 8 per cent.
Governor John S.
Phelps in his biennial messages of 1879 and 1881 had in­
formed the General Assembly that the interest laws had
been enacted for the benefit of the lender, and recommended
James Willis Gleed, "Western Mortgages," For urn, II
(March, 1890), 98-99.
Calculation made from data on page 43.
The Revised Statutes of M issouri, 1855, 2 v o l u m e s ^
nefferson City,’TS56TT 1891; Laws.of Missouri, 1891,
>th General Assembly (Jeffersdh Crty*
, 169-
53that the rate he lowered to 5 or 7 per cent, but no action
was taken.
During the eighties the interest rate on
mortgages in Missouri ranged from 6 per cent to 10 per
cent, with 8 per cent appearing most often.
rate was 7*93 per cent.
The average
When the commission, incidental
to securing a mortgage, was added to this, the rate became
outrageously usurious.
The commission charged by Kansas City and St. Joseph
loan companies was usually 15 per cent for a five-year
A few others charged only 10 per cent.
The usual
practice was to add the commission to the amount borrowed,
although it was sometimes secured with notes and second
This process was repeated at every renewal
Since most of the obligations automatically became
due when the interest was defaulted, a bad crop year or
low prices might force the farmer to pay the commission
cfitener • .
If the interest rate specified in the mort­
gage was 8 per cent, the most common one, and the commis­
sion at 10 per cent, the least one, the actual interest
rate would be 10.8 per cent.
To base the calculation on
10 per oent interest, not an uncommon one, and 15 per cent
commission, the usual one, an actual interest rate of 14.5
Per cent was paid on loans secured by mortgages.
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamationst VI, 36-37, 78.
Eleventh Census of the United States, 1890, Farms and
Hornes. 84.
d e e d , Forum, IX (March. 1890). 9 6 f f . ------------
less of the pate, the interest must be paid with farm
produce that was steadily declining in price.
There is
little wonder that the farmer worried about the passing
of that last resort, the public land.
Although taxes in Missouri tended to decline after
1870, they were an annual charge against the farmers* in­
The average tax per capita fell behind that of the
United States between 1870 and 1890, but the total rate
on the assessed valuation remained higher than that of the
country as a whole.
The state levy was reduced from
$0.50 on the $100 in 1870 to $0.25 in 1892.
The county
tax rate for operating expenses in 1882 varied somewhat
from county to county but the most common rate was $0.50
per $100.
. The total tax levies in the rural counties,
including operating, school, interest, and sinking fund
taxes, varied much more.
The total in a few counties in
the early eighties was under $1.00 per $100 and in others
68. Tax per capita in Missouri: 1870, $8.01; 1880, $5.46;
1890, $6.14. In the United States: 1870, $7.26;
1880, $6.26; 1890, $7.55. Rates per $100 assessed
valuation in Missouri: 1870, $2.50; 1880, $2.11;
1890, $1.85. In the United States: 1870, $1.98;
1880, $1.83; 1890, $1.85. Eleventh Census of the
United States, 1890, WealthT"5ebt, and Taxation, Part
Missouri Auditor*s Report* 1895-1896 (Jefferson City,
1897), 5451 The levy per $100 was: $0.50 in 1870,
$0.45 from 1872 to 1875, $0.40 from 1876 to 1888,
$0.30 from 1889 to 1891, and $0.25 from 1892 to 1896.
Fourth Annual Report of the Missouri Bureau of Labor
Statistics. Ts5S tTefTersop 5 Ity. T583), 1^9=146.
as high or higher than $2,00.
Although the average was
close to $1.50 per $100 for the years 1880, 1882, and 1884,
there was a definite though slight upward trend during
those years.
Although the farmers made demands for an economically
administered government and insisted that the salaries of
state and county officers should he reduced, they seemed
to complain more ahout inequalities in taxation than high
Since they could not escape assessment because
most of their wealth was in real estate, they demanded
laws that would secure a comparable tax from corporations
and holders of intangible property.
Since the value of
intangible property was increasing at a more rapid rate
than that of farm property, they advocated the adoption of
some means that would force the owners to list it with the
A plan to make mortgages null and void unless
they bore an annual stamp of the assesor was suggested
along with the complaint that holders of mortgaged real
estate were taxed for more than its real worth.
rather consistently opposed excise taxes and a tariff on
the necessities of life which placed the burden of taxa­
tion on the poor, and in the early nineties supported a
Missouri Auditor^ Report, 1879-1880 (Jefferson City,
18b i ), ly]
; 18^1-1882 (Jefferson City, 1885),
Statistical Information, 304-307.
graduate* income tax to shift the burden to the rich,72
Missouri farmers especially resented paying the interest
and principal of the heavy indebtedness incurred to aid in
the construction of railroads.
The total bonded debt of Missouri counties,
$18,073,312, was exceeded only by that of New York and Il­
linois in 1880.
If to this is added a probable township
debt of $3,500,000, the total was greater than any other
The larger portion of the obligations had been
assumed to aid in the construction of railroads during
the sixties.
Since many of the bonds had been fraudulent­
ly issued or the projects were never completed, unsuccess­
ful attempts to avoid payment were made through recourse
to the courts or state legislation.
Finding escape impos­
sible, all the counties except three made adjustments and
compromises by 1883 and began to reduce their bonded
Allan Nevlns, Grover Cleveland, A Study in Courage
(New York, 195'gT."553: dicks." PopullsVRevolt, 8 6;
Peters, Quarterly Journal of Economics, TV (October,
1889), 28: Walker, Annals of the American Academy of
Political and Social Science,*“17 (November, 1894),
791; dallfornlaTTTewspaper, February 28, 1889.
Tenth Census of the United States, 1880, Valuation
and Tbtat.jton,“Trr1. The estimated township debt is
given. The Missouri Audito r ^ Report, 1887-1888_r__
(Jefferson cTEvTTgSQ). Statist! cal lnf o p t i o n , 109,
gives the township debt in 1887 as $3 ,787,552*
Besides the ill feeling engendered by this load of
railroad bonds, the farmers of Missouri, as well as the
farmers of the western and northwestern states, had other
grievances against the railroads.
During the campaign
of 1866, the St. Louis Republic charged that the railroads
disregarded established rate schedules, gave preferences
to favored shippers, favored Chicago and outside cities
to the detriment of St. Louis, extended favors to those
outside the state which were not granted to those inside,
and denied each other the highway privileges of their
All of these charges, as well as others, can
Edward L. Lopata, Local Aid to Railroads in Missouri
(New York, 1937), 111, 119, T31T Dallas,"0t. clair,
and Macon counties had made no adjustments in 1883.
The county judges of St. Clair County were in jail
for contempt of a federal court order in 1894 for re­
fusing to levy a tax to pay the interest on the coun­
ty debt. The accrued debt amounted to $1,000,000 at
the time and the assessed valuation of the county
amounted to $3,500,000. St. Louis (semiweekly) Re­
public . February 13, May 7, 1894. Half of the.fortyfour counties whose bonds were listed on the market
in 1878 were pledged to pay 10 per cent interest.
Lopata, 118. Many were indebted beyond their capac­
ity to pay according to Governor Crittenden, who in­
sisted in 1880 that no attempt should be made to
repudiate the debts. Shoemaker, Messages and Procla­
mations. VI. 281-283. The total indebtedness of
f T ^ S f S ,312 in 1887 and to $12,120,846 in 1892.
Missouri Auditor’s Report, 1887-1888, Statistical In7ormat'lonTT37 « T 5 9l=I53S (Jefferson city, 1§9&)',
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 60, cites a number of
sources; Arnett, 68.
St. Louis Republican, August 21, 1886.
58be substantiated.
A law passed in 1875 provided that different kinds of
freight should be classifed and that rates should be es­
tablished on a car-distance or a pound-distance basis.
Although the rates were supposed to be progressively less
as the distance increased, the railroads broke the spirit
if not the letter of the law.
If the freight was routed
over two roads, each charged a separate rather . than a
through rate.
The only redress was for the shipper to sue
for damages in a civil court, which meant that a small
shipper would be able to collect less than the suit would
. 78
For those who were forced to ship their produce over
two railroads, this practice worked a hardship.
It cost
32 1/2 cents per hundred to ship wheat from Springfield to
St. Louis and only 23 cents per hundred to ship wheat from
Pleasant Hill, which was the same distance from St. Louis.
The rate for a car of freight from Warsaw to St. Louis was
$54 while for the same distance over the Missouri Pacific
it was $50.
The difference in each case was the result of
The Revised Statutes of Missouri, 1879, 2 volumes
TTef'ferson "City, W 9 7 7 I, 145V Fourth Annual Report
of the Missouri Railroad Commissioners, 1878 (Jefferson~5Tty,” l’STST, 15-13T* “
Combined Fifth and Sixth Annual Reports of the Mis­
souri Railroad flommlssloners. 1879, 18 8 0 (St. Louis,
155TT, W-'Sff.--------------- -
-59oharging two local rates,
A regulatory act passed in
1887 succeeded reasonably well in eliminating these in80
equalities in charges within the state.
In 1888, how­
ever, the railroad commissioners reported their inability
to secure freight rates calculated on a weight-distance
basis for Missouri shippers if the place of destination
was in another state.
The carload rate to Chicago from
Hlgginsville was $19 more than from Kansas City although
the distance from Hlgginsville was forty miles less.
1891 the General Assembly passed a bill which ordered the
Railroad Commissioners to report such practices to the
. ,
Interstate Commerce Commission,
The law of 1875 also prohibited discrimination, but
provided no adequate means of enforcement.
There were
Seventh Annual Report of the Missouri Railroad Com­
missioners, l88l (Jefferson city, 1862), 37.
This law gave the Railroad Commissioners the power
to regulate railroad rates, and empowered them to
subpoena witnesses and examine them under oath in
making investigations. If infractions of the law
were discovered, they were directed to proceed against
the railroad through the Attorney-General or a County
Prosecutor. Laws of Missouri, 1887, 34th General As­
sembly, Special Session (Jefferson City, 1887), 1528. Governor Morehouse reported in 1889 that there
was some question as to the validity of the lav/, but
that the railroads had complied cheerfully in most
cases. St. Louis Republic, January 3, 1889.
Fourteenth Annual Report of the Missouri Railroad
floTnmi a ' f t i n p , Xfi8B (Jefferson City, 1850J, 17; Sj&ws
of* kiRHniir'r. ifi&T, 36th General Assembly (Jefferson
STtyTTSSIT, 53^4.
60places where railroads refused to accept shipments of
grain except from an elevator at that point.
In another
instance the railroad charged $27 per car for hauling lum­
ber to one toxvn, while from the same point of origin
through this town and five miles beyond, the charge was
At one time corn could be sent from Clinton, a town
in western Missouri, to Chicago for only 37 cents per 100
pounds, while it cost 32 cents to send it to St. Louis.
One coal dealer in Kansas City was forced to pay twice as
much freight as his competitor for shipping coal to Kansas
City from the same mine.
A farmer In Schell City, 261
miles from St. Louis, could save four dollars per car of
live stock if he chose to send his stock to the Union
Stock Yards instead of the National Stockyards in St.
. 82
Besides these local and individual irritations re­
sulting from charging two local rates and from discrimina­
tion, a situation existed in the larger markets at Kansas
City and St. Louis which affected all shippers except
those who shipped over the road owning the terminal facili­
These favored roads not only exacted tribute from
the other roads for using the terminal but also charged
wholesalers and manufacturers high rates for switch and
Eleventh Annual Report of the Missouri Railroad Com­
missioners, 1665 (Jefferson City. 1886), 3l; Fourth
Annual ReporTT~l878, 7-8; Eighth Annual Report, 1882,
15; I^inth A^mifil feeport, 1885 (Jefferson City, 1884),
sidetrack facilities.
There was some evidence that the railroads charged
all the traffic
would hear.
The rate on hard lumber was
5 cents per hundred pounds more than the rate on soft lum­
ber from St. Louis to Kansas City.
The hard lumber, a
Missouri product, was routed through St. Louis while soft
lumber, which came from outside the state, could be sent
to Kansas City over other railroads.
For the same weight
kind of car, and distance, the freight charges from Jasper
County to St. Louis were $96 for a car of wheat and $46
for lead ore.
If the same charge had been made for ore as
for wheat, the mine probably would have been forced to
It was estimated that the railroad made a profit
of $25 per car of ore and $75 per car of wheat.
One of the common complaints was that freight rates
were not reduced in proportion to the general decline in
Governor Crittenden, however, reported in his
biennial message of 1883 that the freight rates at that
time were 25 per cent less than in March, 1878.
was probably so, if he had in mind the rates on Missouri
St. Louis Republic, February 1 and 12, 1887; St.
Louis Globe-Democrat, January 17, 1887.
Ninth Annual Report of the Missouri Railroad Commis­
sioners, 1853, 26.
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiled b'v the St. Louis Journal of Agriculture (St.
Louis, 1890), 15-31.
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VI, 325.
-62products to eastern markets.
The rates per hundred-weight
from St. Louis to New York descended from 38 cents in 1878
to 33 cents in 1883, hut the decline was not a steady one.
The general tendency, however, throughout the eighties was
downward, hut variations from year to year often were
large enough to spoil a shippers* calculation of profit.
It seems evident that many a farmer suffered losses
during the eighties and early nineties through no fault of
his owxu
In the general decline of prices, the fall in
the price of farm products usually preceded that of other
Debts remained constant and interest and taxes
were fixed annual charges against the farmers* incomes.
Railroad rates were high and often unfair.
Arbitrary and
fraudulent lowering of the grade of the grain which was
sent to market prohahly brought losses to many.
It was
also a common belief among farmers that prices were manip­
ulated by monopolies to cheat the farmer on both sales and
Farmers all over the West complained that dishonest
inspectors in the central markets rated their grain lower
than it should have been in order to favor the buyer.
Minnesota it was reported that farmers lost five cents per
Report of the United States Secretary of Agriculture,
1555 (Washington,' 1583') , 271" A sample of variations
in cents per 100 pounds: 1879, 33 1/2; 1880, 42;
1881, 32; 1882, 29 1/2; 1883, 33.
63bushel in this manner*
The grain inspectors in St.
Louis, who were appointed by the Union Merchants Exchange
by authority of an act of the legislature in 1865, were
charged with fraud*
By rating number two wheat as number
three, those who appointed them were allowed to cheat the
farmers from four to six cents per bushel.
The reform
legislature, which was elected in 1888, established a bu­
reau of inspection under the Board of Railroad and Ware90
house Commissioners to overcome this temptation*
ernor Francis reported to the next legislature that the
law had worked advantageously for all concerned.
The information placed before the farmers about
trusts and monopolies convinced many that some means of
control was necessary.
They heard of the Copper Syndicate
which threw 3,500 men out of work by ordering the Montana
88. Hicks, Populist Revolt. 78, quoting the Annual Report
of the Railroad Commissioners of Minnesota, 1883,15;
i s a r t f s r c : --------------------------------------
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 175-176.
Governor Morehouse made the charge that farmers were
cheated, while making a campaign for the Democratic
nomination for governor against David R. Francis who
was president of the Merchants Exohange, St. Louis
Republic. August 1, 1888. Francis received the nomi­
nation but he ran behind the ticket in the rural
counties in the general election. This was probably
caused by his connection with the grain buyers, since
the Republicans made an issue of it during the cam­
Laws of Missouri, 1889, 35th General Assembly (Jef­
ferson city, 1589), 124-135.
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 249.
-64Mines closed; the Combined Steel Industries which paid the
VUloan Steel Works of St. Louis #400,000 per year to stand
idle; the Waverly, Missouri, Stone ring which gave some
quarries as high as $4,500 per year not to operate; the
Kanawa Salt Works which was bought by the Salt Manufactur­
ing Association and had not been operated afterwards; and
the Standard Oil Company which bought its big competitors
and dismantled their plants.
The farmers thought they
had special cause to despise the Flow Trust which raised
the price of plows 100 per cent, the Barbed Wire Trust
which caused the cost of fencing material to advance un­
reasonably, and the Bindertwine Trust which added five
cents per pound to the cost of twine.
The report of Senator Vest of Missouri on the Beef
Combine seemed to add proof to the farmers* contention that
they were forced to pay a tribute on the livestock sent to
central markets. He said that there was no competition in
bidding at the large stockyards and that the prices of­
fered could not be justified by the law of supply and de­
He also reported that the railroad combination had
The Reform press circulated these stories in Missouri.
California Newspaper, January 24, 1889, quoting the
Rolla Herald.
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 79, quoting the Kansas City
Ti™?3 as quoted In the Omaha Herald, April 20, 1889;
(Sall'foraia Newspaper, February 28, March 28, 1889;
St. Louis Republic, iMarch 19, 1889; Nixon, Iowa Jour­
nal of History »**<! politics, XXI (June, 1923), 386.
concentrated the cattle trade In Chicago where the farmer
was cheated by thecharges at
were forced to pay
the stockyards.
$1,00 per hundred pounds for the prai­
rie hay and $1.50 for the tame hay which was fed to their
The corn for which the Missouri farmer paid $1.00
per bushel in the stockyards would have brought him only
an average of 23 cents per bushel in 1889 and 44 cents in
the high price
for feed, there was a yard­
age cost of 25 cents per head for cattle, 8 cents per hog,
and 5 cents per sheep.
It was reasonable for the farm­
ers to conclude that a combine of some kind existed when
they were told that corn sold for 15 cents per bushel in
Kansas and at 30 to 40 cents in Philadelphia.
freight rate
Since the
between the two points was 10 cents per
bushel, the wide margin of profit should have brought a
number of competitors into the trade.
Governor Francis in his inaugural address (1889)
called attention to those centralizing tendencies which
crowded out “healthy competition* and resulted in the sur96
vival of the "strongest" and not the "fittest."
Senator Vest’s Report on the Beef Combine, St. Louis
Republic, May 2, 1890.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, February 19, 1890.
Since tfbft •fwmn price for corn was higher in Missouri,
the editor could make a better case by citing Kansas
prices. At this time the rural Democratic newspapers
offered many arguments supporting Farmers' Alliance
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 221.
-66legislature tried to stop this tendency by making a law
forbidding pools, trusts, and monopolies.
If, according
to this law, any agreement between corporations to control
price could be proved, the company might lose its corpo­
rate rights, be subject to a fine of one per cent of its
stock, and its officers made personally liable to a fine
of $500 to $5,000 and a year in jail.
The experience
of Missouri farmers had been such that the passage of the
law by a legislature which they controlled was not surpris­
In diagnosing his own ills, the farmer decided that
the land, transportation, and money policies of the gov­
ernment and the rapid growth of combines and monopolies
were the cause of his troubles.
He did not admit that
over-production or a higher standard of living contributed
to his condition.
To cure his ills, he demanded that
lands held by corporations and aliens be repossessed and
granted only to actual settlers.
He wanted strict regula­
tion of railroads to eliminate discrimination and reduce
freight rates.
When the state regulatory laws and the
Interstate Commerce Act failed to bring the expected re­
sults, some went so far as to demand public ownership of
Having accepted the quantitative theory of
money, many a farmer was convinced that low prices were
Laws of Missouri. 1889, 35th General Assembly, 96w . ------------—
-67caused by a deficiency in the circulating medium, and
joined his neighbors in making an attempt to secure an
How the farmers, a naturally conservative independent
people with a partisanship burned into their consciousness
by a recent Civil War, were brought to a unanimity of
opinion about the cause and cure of their common ills is
another story.
The task would probably have been impossi­
ble without the motivating force of the widespread discon­
tent which resulted from a period of financial distress.
At any rate the movement to agitate, educate, and organize
the farmers, which rose and subsided during the seventies
and gradually regained its momentum in the eighties, pro­
duced a revolutionary force in Missouri politics.
Part of the farmer’s difficulties during the period,
1873-1896, probably resulted from the changing conditions
ih which he lived*
The transformation of his business
from a way of life to a commercial enterprise created
problems which he was not always able to solve.
When his
neighbors in town and country began to acquire some of the
luxury goods which inventions and new manufacturing proc­
esses made possible, his wants grew faster than his income.
The farmer, however, did not admit that his troubles might
have been caused by his failure to adjust himself as rapid­
ly as conditions changed.
He thought that high freight
rates, monopolies, and too little money in circulation
contributed to his financial distress.
He placed the
blame on the partial attitude of the government toward
other businesses and its failure to regulate railroads and
other corporations.
As a consequence he responded readily
to the teaching of leaders whose aim was to secure legis­
lation favorable to the farmer by means of agitation,
-69education, and organization.1
The farmer reacted to the teaching of these leaders
by joining farm organizations and manifesting a desire to
find the cause and cure for his difficulties.
He delved
into the field of political economy in search of remedies
and studied political science and practical politics to
find a way to secure remedial legislation.
Since the farm
organizations were national in scope, the Missouri farm­
e r ^ provincial outlook was broadened; and, through the
necessity for national action to meet the demands formu­
lated by the organizations, his belief in the old state
rights doctrine was shaken.
Not only was he led to accept
liberal political doctrines but he also learned to improve
his own business methods and management and the art of mak­
ing farm life more liveable.
In fact it was with the latter purpose in mind that
the Patrons of Husbandry, more commonly called the Grange,
was organized and promoted in the late sixties by a few
government clerks at Washington under the leadership of
Oliver H. Kelly.
Its early growth was slow and discourag­
ing but the "hard times" after 1873 created a period of
farm unrest in which it seemed to thrive.
The State Grange
organization in Missouri was not perfected until 1873, but
The leaders in the farmers* movements often said that
they expected to secure legislation favorable to the
farmer by means of agitation, education, and organiza­
during the next two years the membership grew by leaps and
The number of subordinate or local Granges in­
creased from 483 in August, 1873 to 8,032 in December,
The proportion of the farm population which the
Grange touched directly and indirectly must have been
large9 since there was an average of seventeen locals to
the county.
Roughly speaking, this was about one for
every township and one for every 106 farms in the state in
The Grange was forbidden to take part, as an organi­
zation, in partisan politics by its declaration of pur­
poses, but it tried to inculcate a spirit of independence
in politics which would lead the members to vote for their
own interests.
The Missouri Grangers were restive under
these restrictions and argued that a majority could change
the declaration of purposes.
Since securing the legisla­
tion which would promote their interests depended upon the
Oliver H. Kelley, Origin and Progress of the Order of
Patrons of Husbandry (Philadelphia, 18*75), 422: Solon
J. Buck.~?he (Srranger Movement (Cambridge, 1913), 58-59;
Columbia luflssourl Statesman, December 17, 1875.. Be­
low are the number of local Granges at different times
during the period of its most rapid growth in Missouri.
There were probably about 150,000 members in 1875.
Kelley, 419-420; California Greenback Derrick, July 1,
1882, quoting the Batavia, Ohio. Clermont Advance.
-71election of a candidate who would support it, they thought
that the candidate should be selected in a Grange meeting.
No change was ever made in the declaration of purposes,
but ways were found to circumvent it.
In 1874, candidates
of the Peopled party addressed crowds gathered at Grange
sponsored picnics.
Another simple scheme was to suspend
the rules and discuss politics until the rules were again
The Grange might have been convicted on circumstan­
tial evidence of being the political bureau of the third
There was a very close resemblance between the
annual demands formulated by the one and the platforms of
the other.
The connection appears much stronger since the
officers in the Grange were often candidates on third par­
ty tickets.
Henry Eshbaugh, once master of the State
Grange, was a Greenback candidate for Congress in 1878.
Ahira Manring, member of the executive committee of the
State Grange, was on the Union Labor ticket for governor
in 1888.
On the ticket with him for register of lands was
G. B. Debenardi, another Grange leader, and the recognized
leader of the party that year was D. N. Thompson, master
Lincoln County Herald, May £8 , 1873; Warrensburg WeekT 6urnal," October 2, 1874; Minutes of the Boone Couft
Grange, 1873-1883, unpublished manuscript in the
library of the State Historical Society of Missouri,
Columbia, March 1, 1880.
72of the State Grange*
The Grange probably ezerted its greatest influence in
pressureratharthan party politics*
The members of the Board
of Curators of the Agricultural College respected its
lobby so much that they asked it to secure an appropria­
tion in 1876*
The Grangers also circulated petitions to
present to elected officers, and resolved in their meet­
ings to vote only for those who were friendly to Grange
sponsored bills•
Their activity in government extended
downward to the local Granges*
The Boone County Grange
sent petitions and memorials to the state legislature,
appointed committees to work with the county board of
equalization to make sure that all personal property would
be taxed, called on the treasurer of the county to help
the assessor find those who held county bonds, and sent
delegations to the county court to make demands of various
Being an acknowledged reform organization, the range
of its demands was. wide*
Its efforts to secure railroad
regulation and taxation were so persistent from the early
St. Louis Republican, May 8 , 1884; May 6 , 1888; St.
Louis Republic'.’ 6'ctober 2, 1888; Fourteenth Annual
Proceedings "o? the Missouri State Grange, .1886 (Sedal-
Ta’," 1886), IS? 1558 (aarini^aTT~1588), 55-5#:
Columbia Missouri Statesman, July 28, 1876; Minutes, of
the Boone"T5ounty”Grange, March 31, September 1, Decem­
ber 1, 167^;”¥irst hfonday in January, 1876; Decem­
ber 31, 1880.
73seventies and through the eighties that such laws came to
he called Granger laws.
Its attempts to control monopolies
through legislation and cooperative enterprises are well
Schemes to reduce the rate of taxation by devising
methods for locating and assessing personal property in­
terested the members.
A law to make mortgages null and
void, unless they bore an annual stamp by the assessor,
was suggested along with the complaint that the holder of
mortgaged real estate was taxed for its full value.
fiat money "was advocated to increase the amount of currenoy in circulation, and a plan to issue currency on land
security was submitted before the development of the sub7
treasury system by the Farmers * Alliance.
Postal savings
banks, a fractional paper currency to save money order
charges, textbooks furnished at cost by the state, woman
suffrage, and prohibition also found a place in the long
list of Grange demands.
The subtreasury plan adopted by the Farmers* Alliance
and Industrial Union at St. Louis in 1889 proposed
that money be issued as loans to farmers, secured by
their non-perishable products stored in government
warehouses. The plan provided that the farmers should
pay 2 per cent Interest on the money borrowed and that
the currency should be withdrawn from circulation when
the loan was repaid. If this scheme was adopted,, they
argued, the circulating currency would be expanded and
made more elastic. The farmer would also be able to
hold his products for a higher market. John D. Hicks,
The Populist Revolt (Minneapolis, 1931), 186-204.
8. Alma B. Wilkinson, The Granger Movement in Missouri,
unpublished Master’s Thesis^ Missouri university, 1926,
109-120; Proceedings of the Missouri Sta_t_e_ Grange,
1889. 18-19': !55-T6i Buck. 6 4 . ________________________
The Grange leaders carried on a program of education
that was extensive because of the wide range of subject
matter, intensive because of the time devoted and the de­
vices used, and effective not only because of its timely
appeal but also because of the results secured in molding
public opinion.
They taught household arts, improved
methods in agriculture, parliamentary law, and public
They quoted facts and figures about corporation
and monopoly profits, the number of lawyers and doctors in
public office, and the effect of a protective tariff on
Current practices in politics and newspaper
accounts of graft and inefficiency in government furnished
subject matter and inspiration.
The devices for bringing the information to the mem­
bers and others, who might incidentally be touched, were
both varied and ingenious.
The programs in the semimonthly
meetings of the locals consisted of lectures, debates,
John D. Hicks, "Third Party Tradition in American
Politics," Mississippi Valley Historical Review, XX
(June, 1933), 14-18; Kenyon L. Butterfield, HThe
Grange," Forum, XXXI (April, 1901), 231-242; C. W.
Pierson, butcome of the Granger Movement," Popular
Science Monthly, XXXII (January, 1888), 368.
A. H. Hirsch, "Efforts of the Grange in the Middle
West to Control the Price of Machinery," Mississippi
Valley Historical Review, XV (March, 1929), 484; St.
louls R e p u b l i c a n January 21, 1888; Columbia Missouri
Statesman. July' 26, 1876; Robert Lee Hunt, History of
W e Farmer Movements in the Southwest, 1873-TSST^
TgolTege~gtatlon,"T exas,"1^4), lTrWllklnson, 109-
papers read by local members, and open forum discussions
on subjects suggested by the National or State Grange or
by newspaper stories of some recent development.
The mem­
bers were urged to subscribe for newspapers and farm maga­
zines and to foster local libraries.
All local Granges
were required to subscribe for the state organ which was
maintained to
ooflrdinate the educational program and
transmit instructions from the state officers."^
The editor of the Missouri Pamona successfully bid
for the honor and profit of making his newspaper the state
organ at the annual meeting in 1888.
In making his bid he
said that the state organ ought to expose the thefts by
corporations and trusts, condemn those who were opposed to
the farmers* interests, and inform the farmers about the
best implements, methods of cultivation, and livestock.
He insisted that the Grange should remain non-partisan but
We must educate the farmer to think he has some
rights that demand recognition; we want him to
know that he has as much right to grace the halls
of Congress as the gilded snob from some national
bank . . . .
If you are the mainstay of this
Hunt, 11; Buck, 286; St. Louis Republic, June 21,
1888; Butterfield, Forum, XXXI (April, 1901), 231242; Pierson. Popular Science Monthly, XXXII (January,
1888). 368: Proceedings of the Missouri State Grange,
1888, 38-40m i n u t e s ojEHEEg Boone County Grange,
April 5, 1875; October 4, 187$; March 2, 1 8 8 1 7 First
Wednesday in June, 1882.
government, why in the name of common
you not have some say in its affairs?
As a class you outnumber others . • .
let scheming politicians rob you . . .
must be met with brains. 1
sense do
yet you
The Grange had lost much of its power to influence
public opinion in the eighties because it no longer touched
a large membership.
With the rise of the Greenback party
in 1876 the movement began a decline which was almost as
rapid as its rise.
Attempts to connect the organization
with the Greenback party again in 1880 and 1882 caused
others to drop their membership.
In 1886 there were only
eighty-eight subordinate Granges scattered over forty
counties but the organizing spirit, aroused at the
Proceedings of the Missouri State Grange. 1888, 3813.
The National Farmers* Congress as late as 1888, how­
ever, paid the Grange the compliment of fixing its
next annual meeting at the same time and place as the
next annual Grange conference. Appleton*s Annual
Cyclopedia. 1888, 460. The National Farmers* congresses were annual meetings of farm leaders after
1880. The delegates were appointed by the governors
of the states and territories. Missouri as well as
most of the other states sent delegates. Appleton*s
Annual Cyclopedia after 1885, reported the annual
proceedings. A~"Tist of demands was formulated each
year and sent to the President of the United States
Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representa­
tives. The demands made at the Congress of 1890 bore
a remarkable resemblance to the Missouri Democratic
state platform, the demands of the Missouri Alliance,
and the Ocala platform formulated the same year. The
most outstanding difference was that the Ocala plat­
form oontained the subtreasury demand while the oth­
ers did not. Although the newspapers gave the Farm­
ers* Congresses some publicity, their influence as
an agitative force was probably small in Missouri
during the eighties.
-77time when the Alliance and Wheel were growing rapidly,
brought a slight rise in the number of subordinate Granges,
In 1888 one new subordinate Grange was organized and thir­
ty-eight were reinstated.
In 1889 sixty-five more were
reorganized and the number still continued to increase a
little in the nineties.
The educational program of the Grange probably
aroused the farmer's desire to read and thus caused him
to develop an.interest in affairs beyond his immediate
At any rate an increase in the number of
newspapers and farm magazines began shortly after the rise
of the Granger movement.
Between 1880 and 1890 the number
of daily newspapers in the United States increased from
971 to 2,226.
Not all these were for the farmers, but
many went to rural readers.
In the same period, the list
of weeklies and semiweeklies printed in rural towns expand­
ed from less tjian 9,000 to more than 14,000.
These news­
papers depended largely upon country subscribers and were
edited and arranged to appeal to the farmers.
received a little: more than her share in this newspaper
boom, since the fifty-one dailies and 475 weeklies in 1884
Minutes of the Boone County Grange, March 1, 1880,
Tune 9* TS’
80, First Wednesday in March, 1882; St.
Louis Republican, September 3, 1880; Proceedings of
the Missouri State Grange, 1886. 20; 1888, 24; 1889
THannTFal." T889T. 2 5 : 1892 (Lexington, 1893), 371
78had grown to eighty dallies and 80S weeklies in 1901.
The increase in the number of farm magazines was as
The ninety farm magazines in the United States
in 1870 had nearly doubled by 1880, and over 100 more had
been established by 1885.
The number of magazines pub­
lished in Missouri, not all of which were agricultural
magazines, more than doubled in the period 1884-1901.
publisher of farm magazines said forty-five years after­
ward that the late seventies and eighties were a period of
great prosperity for farm magazines.
If the large number
established is indicative of a profitable market, his
memory had not played him false.
An examination of the files of almost any daily or
weekly newspaper during the period reveals that editors
had sensed the farmers* desire to read general news and
learn new and better methods of conducting their business.
The Republic, one of the leading St. Louis dailies, de­
voted two columns of space in one issue per week during
the late eighties to farm news, methods, and devices.
Both it and the Globe-Democrat, another St. Louis daily,
Arthur M. Schlesinger, The Rise of the City (New York,
1933), 185; N. W. Ayer an5 Sons, publishers, Directo­
ry of Newspapers and Periodicals (Philadelphia, annu-
Ayer and Sons, Directory, 1884, 256; 1.901, 457;
Prank Luther Mott, A"History of American Magazines,
3 volumes (New York, Cambridge, 1938), III, 151;
John M. Stahl. Growing Up with the West (New York,
1930), 88.
-79lssued a weekly or a semiweekly newspaper designed for
farm readers,
Aggressive editors not only catered to the
new market for information and news but also tried to de­
velop it further.
In the matter of educating the farmer in the fields
of political science or political economy, the newspapers
differed according to the politics of the editor or the
holder of the controlling interest of the shares.
were sensitive enough to the subscription list, however,
to change their views if necessary.
This was especially
true of the Democratic editors in Missouri,
Most of them
followed fairly closely the transformation of the views of
the majority faction during the eighties and early nineti6S«
One interesting phenomenon of the period was the num­
ber of newspapers which sprang up and taught the doctrines
known as Greenbackism or Populism.
The avowed purpose of
the editors of these newspapers was to teach the farmer
their theories of political science and political economy
and to urge him to seek relief through organized effort.
Their columns were filled with articles, written by lead­
ers in the farm movements, on money, monopolies, graft in
government, and suggested cures for the economic and
The editor of the California Newspaper, October 2,
1890, said that the Democratic newspapers had taken
the Farmers * Alliance doctrines for their own. In
that year the members of the Alliance nominated all
the Democratic candidates for state office.__________
-80political ills of the time.
Although their influence was
somewhat nullified in the early eighties because the edi­
tors were known to be members of the third party, many of
their doctrines came to be accepted by the fsrmers in Mis­
souri in the late eighties.
With the rise of the Farmers * Alliance movement their
numbers increased and their subscription lists expanded.
Nine hundred of the editors of these newspapers organized
a Reform Press Association at Ocala, Florida, in 1890 for
the purpose of securing a united campaign for supporters
of the demands made by the Southern Alliance.
The editors
of these newspaper in Missouri, of whom there were fiftysix in 1891, formed a state association for the same pur18
Through their national and state associations the
editors were able to keep abreast of the developments in
the farmers* movement all over the country.
They filled
from one to two pages a week with speeches and messages of
the leaders and editorial comments from other reform news19
While newspapers and magazines were bringing the
farmer information about new machinery, crops, and methods
Hicks. Populist Revolt, 131; St. Louis Globe-Democrat,
November 4, Tff§2; Memphis Peoples Messenger, July 107
1896; Frank M. Drew, "The Present Farmers* Movement,"
Political Science Quarterly, VI (January, 1891), 310.
California Newspaper, September 10, 1891; January 19,
December 28, 1893.
81of cultivation, the Missouri Board of Agriculture developed
an adult educational device for the same purpose*
In each
of the years 1882, 1883, and 1884, one large meeting of
farmers was called at which farm problems were discussed.
These having proved successful, the number held each year
was increased to seventeen in 1888 and to fifty-five in
The proceedings of these meetings were printed
rather fully in the Annual Report of the State Board of
Agriculture and distributed to farm clubs and leaders.
These meetings, which were called farm institutes,
were probably designed to bring the farmers the scientific
information discovered by agricultural colleges and experi­
ment stations.
As times became harder during the eighties
and the farm faction was rising to a dominant place in the
Democratic party, however, other matters became subjects
for speeches before the institutes.
The effect of exorbi­
tant freight rates on farm income was explained, and state
regulation and control of railraods suggested as means of
securing justice.
Interest, debts, farm mortgages, fore­
closures, and tenancy were estimated, analyzed, and used
to prove that something was wrong, or served as the basis
Twenty-fouth Annual Report of the Missouri Board of
Agriculture, 1651-1892 (J*efPerson City, 1892), 14.
TneTJIssouri Board of Agriculture was composed of one
member from each congressional district. They were
appointed by the Governor. The General Assembly ap­
propriated funds to print and distribute the reports.
-82for prophesies of a dark future, if corrective measures
were delayed*
Speakers before these meetings often called
upon the state and federal governments to eliminate the
evil effects of the protective tafiff, to curb trusts and
monopolies, and to subsidize the construction of roads and
the improvement of waterways*
Since Grange leaders and Farmers * Alliance advocates
were sometimes invited to speak before the institutes, it
is not surprising that some of their doctrines were taught.
The farmers who heard the speeches or read the Annual Re­
ports of the Board of Agriculture learned that they were
"looked down upon" and called "one-gallowsed farmers?* by
the city dwellers, that agricultural problems received no
consideration from the doctors and lawyers who filled the
legislatures, and that "sharpers and tricksters" boasted
of the farmers* lack of enough intelligence to defend
their own interests*
In order to exert pressure on the
legislature and to defeat candidates who did not promise
to support legislation proposed by the farmers, they were
advised to join some kind of a farmers* organization.
speeches of this kind were suddenly stopped, however, when
Many of the speeches of this type were printed in
full and others were abstracted. Annual Report of
the Missouri Board of Agriculture. 1566-1887 (Jeffer­
son crty r rg87rr~g4^:54g, isg-isi, 568-5^2; 1887-1888
(Jefferson City, 1888), 175-210; 1889-1890 (Jefferson
City, 1890), 47, 69, 279-282, 346, 354, T582-386;
1890-1891 (Jefferson City, 1891), 189.
-83the third party men seized control of the state officeB of
the Farmers* Alliance.
Previous to that time the Alliance
had seemed to lend strength to the farmer faction in the
Democratic party, hut when it appeared that many of the
farmers might become Populists, the Board of Agriculture
limited the subjects of the speeches to new crops, animal
husbandry, fertilizers, horticultural subjects, and new
methods of cultivation.
As an agitating agency the farmers* institutes prob­
ably had little influence#
The attendance was never very
large and it is doubtful if the Reports of the state Board
of Agriculture were widely read.
The Farmers* Alliance,
which was growing rapidly at the time when the number of
institutes were being increased, was able to reach a much
larger portion of the farm population*
It adopted and im­
proved the methods of the Grange, many of whose members
Joined the new organization.
As an agency of agitation
and education it became a powerful force both in shaping
Annual Report of the State Board of Agriculture,
Ig83~TJe^ erson"crEy,“I55?)7~g77 m ^ V ri8«B?Uj8.7,
23TP431; 1887-1888, 35-46, 175-210; 1889-1896, 47,
346 , 347. T?he speeches designed to stir the farmers
to action were stopped in 1891, the year that the
third party men were able to elect the officers of
the Farmers* Alliance in Missouri. A sharp struggle
between the Democrats and the third party men, how­
ever, had developed in 1890. See below. The nation­
al organization of the Southern Alliance, with which
the Missouri Alliance was affiliated, began to give
the People*s party encouragement in 1891.
public opinion and in party politics.
The farmers* movement which began to make itself felt
in the late eighties is usually called the Farmers* Alli­
ance although there were actually two large organizations.
When the Granger movement subsided, a number of local farm
clubs modeled closely after the Grange plan sprang up here
and there over the country.
These were gradually brought
together into such state organizations as the Texas Farm­
ers* Alliance, the Louisiana Farmers* Union, the Agricul­
tural Wheel of Arkansas, and the Farmers* Mutual Benefit
Association of Illinois.
At the same time the farmers of
the Northwest were joining another movement which grew out
of the Farmers* Transportation Convention sponsored by
Milton George, editor and owner of the Chicago Rural World.
At this meeting in Chicago in October, 1880, the Na­
tional Farmers* Alliance was born.
A constitution was
adopted providing for national, state, and local organiza­
It was loosely organized, non-secret, and non-par­
The National Farmers* Alliance allowed each local
organization to direct its own activities as the local
circumstances should require.
The protests and demands
were at first directed against the unfair practices of the
Proceedings of the Tenth Annual Session of the Nation­
al Farmers* Congress (Macedonia, Iowa, 18 9 1 ) , IX;
Proceedings of the faissouri State Grange, 1888» 10;
History of tEe Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiled by 'the St. louis Journal of Agriculture
(St. Louis, 1890), 108.
85railroads which troubled the North and West, but as the
still harsher times of the late eighties and nineties came,
the program was extended to include demands for the aboli­
tion of national banks, the free coinage of silver, the
lending of surplus government funds on land security, the
prohibition of option dealing, the election of president
and vice-president by popular vote, woman suffrage, and
the assessment of all stocks, bonds, and mortgages for
Although the editors of farm magazines opposed the
organization at first, because they thought it a scheme
to increase the circulation of the Rural World, the early
growth was encouraging.
There were 24,500 members in
October, 1881, and 100,000 members and 2,000 locals in
October, 1882.
After the good crop year in 1883, the mem­
bership began to decline but after the failure of the
. 25
wheat crop in 1885 it began to grow again.
The zeal of the leaders led to an attempt to unite
all the movements on a national scale.
The leaders in the
South and Southwest not only sent organizers into Missouri
and other neighboring states but also sought to unite the
the state organizations in that section.
The Farmers*
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 99; St. Louis Republic,
January 30, T 8 § 1 .
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 99-101; John D. Hicks, "The
Farmers* Alliance. Worth Carolina Historical Review,
VI (July, 1929L 257-258.
Alllance of Texas, whose state organization had been per­
fected in 1882, fused with the Louisiana Farmers * Union in
1887, and in the same year laid plans for a union with the
Agricultural Wheel of Arkansas.
In 1889 all the farm­
ers1 organizations and the Knights of Labor sent represen­
tatives to St. Louis to try to unite all into one large
national unit.
Because of too many divergent and opposing
interests and views, the National Farmers* Alliance, the
one formed at Chicago in 1880, and a few individual state
organizations refused to unite with the others.
South Dakota, and North Dakota severed their relations
with the National Farmers* Alliance at St. Louis, however,
and affiliated themselves with the southern states in an
organization as New York, Michigan, Indiana, Colorado, and
a few locals in Iowa did later.
This group, with which
Missouri also affiliated, assumed the name National Farm­
ers* Alliance and Industrial Union.
Thereafter it was
commohly called the Southern Alliance and the National
Farmers* Alliance was called the Northern Alliance.
W. A. Peffer. "The Farmers* Defensive Movement,"
Forum. VIII (December, 1889), 463-473; W. S. Morgan,
history of the Wheel and the Alliance, and the Impend­
ing Revolution (st.Louis, 1891}, 134-144.
St. Louis Republic, December 3, 4, and 5, 1889; Her­
man C. Nixon, '*Tlie~ Cleavage within the Farmers’ Alli­
ance Movement," Mississippi Valley Historical Review,
XV (June, 1926). 22-55: Hicks, Populist Revolt, 124;
California Newspaper, February 26,1891. Because one
of the aims was to unite the West and South political­
ly, in early nineties, it was said that only Republican newspapers (Footnote continued on page 87.)______
-87The Northern Alliance had spread into Missouri in the
early stages of the movement, but failed to recover its
strength after its decline in the early eighties.
A Pro­
ducing Men’s Alliance, which seems to have been Missouri’s
version of the farmers* organizations springing up all
over the country, was spreading over the state at the same
Its resolutions were a compromise between those
adopted by the farmers in the North and those in the South,
Like those of the North, both old parties were attacked,
but instead of a tendency to launch a third party, it pro­
posed to work through a non-partisan pledging of candidate^
which was typical of the early Southern movements.
Producing Men’s Alliance disappeared, however, and the
Northern Alliance was eventually overshadowed by the or­
ganizations which came in from the South in 1886 and
Both the Texas Alliance and the Agricultural Wheel
had entered Missouri before their national fusion in 1888.
(Continued from page 86.) used the name Southern Al­
liance. Although no organic union was made with the
Knights of Labor, the new organization was able to
formulate a program of demands which it and the
Knights agreed to support with their legislative^com­
mittees in Washington, D. C. Drew, Political Science
quarterly, VI (June, 1891), 290; Morgan, 171-175.
28. Hicks, Populist Revolt, 101; Columbia Missouri States. man, March’
There were Missouri delegates
at the Northern Alliance convention in 1891, however*
St. Louis Republic, January 29, 1891.
88Organizers for the Texas Alliance had entered southwest
Missouri about the same time that a local was established
in Butler County in April, 1887.
The workers in the
southern counties met with such success that a state or­
ganization could be perfected at a meeting in Poplar Bluff
in October the same year.
The growth in membership con­
tinued rapidly until April, 1888, when a special meeting
was called to stop the drive for membership until after
the election.
This was done because some had been reluc­
tant to join the organization on account of the charges
that it was a political scheme.
Nevertheless there were
615 locals with 13,000 members in thirty-eight counties,
all of them south of the river, when the state meeting was
held in August.
Plans were made at this time to follow
the lead of the parent group and fuse with the Agricultur­
al Wheel which was also spreading across the southern part
of the state.
The Wheel came into Missouri from the south and south­
In 1886 a local Wheel was formed in Mississippi
County by an organizer from Tennessee and another was said
to have grown out of an indignation meeting of farmers in
Howell County because the county court had placed coal
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
comp11 edTyTTTe St. Louis~3ournal of Agriculture,
204-207; Morgan, 120-121; the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. September 28, 1888, estimated the number at
from 21,000 to 22,000. The estimate probably is
89stoves in the courthouse and thus deprived farmers of a
market for wood,
A state organization was perfected early
the next year, and at the first state convention in Octo­
ber it was reported that there were 129 Wheels, and 5,895
members in sixteen counties.
It was estimated that the
number in unrepresented counties might bring the total to
In August, 1888 the Wheelers claimed that they
had 1,950 local and sixty-five county Wheels, and that the
combined Wheel and Alliance membership was 100,000.
The Wheel like the Farmers1 Alliance was supposed to
be a non-partisan organization, but the Wheelers like
their Arkansas brethern were not as conscientious about
the matter.
The Democrats were given a fright because
southeast Missouri, one of their strongholds, was being so
successfully invaded by the new organization during an
election year.
There was some justification for the fears
because the Wheelers had nominated county tickets in Texas
and Wright counties, where they subsequently elected some
county officers.
Their state president, H. W. Hickman,
was running for state senator on an independent ticket,
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.
compiled by the St. .touis Journal of Agriculture,
191-213; Morgan, 83-84; the St. LouTs Globe-Democrat,
September 5, 1888, estimated that 60 to 63 per cent
of the 58,000 voters who were members had been or
were Democrats. Since the Globe-Democrat was also
predicting that the Wheelers would vote against D. H.
Francis, Democratic nominee for governor, because he
was a grain dealer, the size of their estimate might
have been colored by wishful thinking.
-90and there were rumors that they intended to make a general
cleaning of courthouse rings in southeast Missouri.
combat this influence the Democratic central committee
concentrated its energy on the Wheel infected section and
sent the whole ticket of state candidates on a campaign
tour of the southeast counties.
Disturbing news of their political possibilities
filled the newspapers.
They were described as a deter­
mined, reading, and thinking people who knew what their
best interests were and would not be easily turned from
their purpose.
Another reporter found that they were well
posted on financial affairs and harbored
athy to option dealing and national banks.
a violent antip­
The story was
told that they had a system of communication between lo­
cals arranged so that orders going out from the state of­
fices would be in the hands of every Wheeler in two days.
This looked especially dangerous because of the possibility
of a political revolution by a group of organized "scratchers" in two days* time.
The Globe-Democrat, a Republican
daily, gleefully told about mossback Democrats and ultraRepublicans sitting side by side in a Texas County conven*4
tion. 32
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiledTv the St. Ifluis Journal of Agriculture, 213;
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 237 September 17 and
29, 1888: St. Louis Republic, October 30, November 5,
1888; Official Manual of arijgsouri, 1889-1890 (Jeffer­
son City, 1889), Il07
St. Louis Republic, August 25, October 20, 1888; St.
Louis Globe-Democrat, August 23, September 17 and 29,
91In August, 1889, the Wheel end Alliance state conven­
tions met in Springfield and brought to a close the nego­
tiations which confirmed the fusion of the two national
organizations at Meridian, Mississippi, in 1888.
named the new organization the Farmers’ and Laborers*
Union of Missouri, but it was most commonly called the
Missouri Alliance.
Their aims and constitutions were so
much alike in every respect that the union caused no great
shift in anything except the state offices.
H. W. Hickman,
who had been president of the Wheel, was elected president.
His election signified the greater strength of the Wheel
membership and his candidacy for state senator the year
before indicated that the Missouri Alliance might assume
a place of importance in party politics.
The Southern Alliance, with which the Missouri
Alllanc# affiliated at St. Louis in 1889, adopted a decla­
ration of purposes much like that of the Grange.
The aim
was to bring to the members useful information about new
and proved methods of cultivation, new crops, better
breeds of livestock, prices, machinery, or any other in­
formation that might help them to be more efficient farm­
There seemed to be an agreement that the farmer
might be able to solve some of his own difficulties by
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural ache.el, etc.,
compiled by the St. Louis Journal of Agriculture,
208-213; Morgan, 84; St. Louis Republic, August 21,
-92using better management, but they insisted that other
things were at the root of the trouble.
Assuming that ex­
cessive railroad rates, usury, taxes, the tariff, bonded
indebtedness, and monopolies were partly the cause of the
financial distress, the organization planned to secure the
necessary legislation to bring relief.
Unlike the Grange,
a discussion of the economic conditions of the country
might be followed with discussion of the necessary politi­
cal action to secure reforms.
The only limitation placed
upon the Alliance was the requirement that it remain non+ •
The national organization was composed of delegates
selected in the state conventions
who elected a group of
officers to promote the aims and objects listed in a
statement of demands.
These officers, whose salaries were
large enough to command capable men, directed the agita­
tion and education through the official organ,
al Economist, and through the reform press.
the Nation­
The Ocala
platform of 1890 is a sample of a list of reforms designed
to help the fanner as well as to be a syllabus for the
educational program for the following year.
This platform demanded legislation prohibiting the
alien ownership of land and the repossession of land held
by aliens, foreign syndicates, and railroads.
It advocated
the rigid, honest, just control and supervision of the
Morgan, 158-160, Chapter VII._________________________
-93means of communication and transportation, and if these
failed, public ownership and operation of them.
The Sher­
man Silver Purchase Act was condemned and Congress was
asked to abolish national banks and reduce the amount of
revenue collected to a sum that would maintain an economi­
cally administered government. . The increase of the circu­
lating currency to $50 per capita by the adoption of the
subtreasury or some better system was suggested.
the other demands made were the prevention of option deal­
ing, a graduated income tax, and the removal of the high
tariff rates from the necessities of life.
The state organization followed very closely that of
the national organization.
At an annual convention of
delegates representing every 1,500 members or a major
fraction in each county, state officers were elected, an
official organ chosen for the year, and a platform adopted
to guide the reform press and those in charge of the edu­
cational program.
The state organization financed its
program by charging each member 50 cents for initiation
fees and 20 cents for annual dues.
The president was paid
an annual salary of $250, the secretary $500, the
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 430-431. The farmers of Mis­
souri were told that foreign noblemen owned
21,000,000 acres of land in the United States and
that 90,000 of these were owned by Lord Scully, the
famous rack-renter of Ireland. Twenty-seventh Annual
Report of the Missouri Board of Agriculture, 1894I5%5,(Jefferson Cit7,~~1895), 70-71, reporting a
speech before a farmers* institute.
94treasurer $75, and the lecturer $600 and traveling ex­
It was the duty of the lecturer to act as director
of the educational program, to go wherever his services
were needed as a speaker, and to appoint congressional
district organizers.
They and the deputies whom they ap­
pointed received six dollars from evey local lodge which
they established.
Each county which had ten or more local lodges formed
a oounty organization.
A set of officers like that of the
state was elected annually and the business which might
affect the county was discussed in quarterly meetings of
delegates representing the locals.
The fees which went to
the state Alliance were collected by the county officers,
and the county lecturers transmitted instructions and in­
formation from their state superior to their subordinates
in the locals.
As director of the educational work in the
county, the county lecturer was subject to calls from any
local which might desire to hear him speak.
The state constitution provided that local lodges
must be at least three miles from the next nearest one and
have seven or more members.
They elected officers whose
duties paralleled those of the state and county and were
required to meet at least once a month.
Many met
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiled by the St. Louis Journal of Agriculture,
219-225. The constitution of the Farmers’ and Laborers * Union of Missouri is given.
-95©ffcenarto hear lectures and participate in programs of dif­
ferent kinds.
The subject matter was either sent directly
to them through the state organ or the reform press or
came indirectly from the state to their county and local
The meetings were secret and closed to those
who had not been initiated, except at times when it was
deemed worthwhile to invite the public to hear some lec­
ture or participate in some program which would bring a
needed lesson.
The Alliance movement began in Missouri at a time
when the economic as well as the political situation had
created an unrest which would foster its growth.
The Dem­
ocratic reformers had risen in protest and elected their
candidate for governor in 1884.
The attempts to secure
laws to regulate railroads had been circumvented by the
lobby in the legislative session of 1885.
The railroad
strike of 1886 had aroused a still deeper hatred for the
railroad companies, now personified by Jay Gould.
in the regular session of 1887, the railroad lobby was
able to block a regulation law and the governor was forced
to call an extra session to secure it.
In this same year,
a drought increased the financial distress which had re­
sulted from a fall in prices that began in 1885.
It was
also in this same year, 1887, that the Wheel and the Alli­
ance came into the state.
They thrived in the troubled
atmosphere created by the continued depression and the
excitement of the revolt of the Young Democrats led byDavid R. Francis against the older conservatives and the
railroad dominated central committee in 1888.
The times were right and the Missouri farmers had an
especially able lecturer, U. S. Hall, during the fiscal
year 1889-1890.
As a consequence the growth of the organ­
ization was almost unbelievable.
The reported 100,000
members at the time of the union of the Alliance and Wheel
in August, 1889, had grown to 151,600 on May 11, 1890.
At the annual meeting in August, 1890, it was estimated
from the number of delegates present, 150 from all but
eight counties, that there were 200,000 members.
the organization was secret in nature and met behind
closed doors, the public was forced to depend on esti30
U. S. Hall, in a personal interview thirty years
later, estimated that at the period of its greatest
strength, which was probably early in 1891, the Missouri
Alliance had 240,000 members.
St. Louis Republic, May 11, 1890. U. S. Hall gave
this estimate. As state lecturer at that time he was
in position to know. Various other reports estimated
the number as 150,000 during the summer of 1890.
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiledTyinie St. LouisTournal of Agriculture,
236; Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedic, 1890, 501; Morgan,
Sedalia Morning Gazette, August 12, 1890; California
Newspaper, September 25, 1890.
Charles Omega Wright, The Populist Movement with Spe­
cial Reference to Missouri, unpublished Masterfs
TEesis. 'Missouri UniversTEv. 1921, 62._______________
-97Since there were said to be 4,000 locals in May, 1890
the proportion of the farmers who were brought into con­
tact with the teachings of the Alliance must have been
Although the membership increased nearly 100,000
after that time, it is not likely that the number of local
lodges increased in like proportion,
Boone and Moniteau
counties each had over forty locals at a later time, but
on the basis of the estimate in 1890 there would have been
an average of thirty-five to the county, two to each town­
ship, and one for every fifty-six farms in the state in
Since the avowed purpose was to shape the views and
opinions of those farmers, country school teachers, and
preachers who were members, the Farmers' Alliance became
a powerful educational agency in Missouri,
The decline in membership, however, was as rapid as
its rise.
By the time of the regular state meeting in
1891 the membership had fallen off 25 per oent and by the
spring of 1892 over half of the members had dropped out.
At the annual meeting at Moberly in 1892, the salaries of
all officers were drastically lowered and the constitution
amended so that the fine of ten cents for missing three
consecutive local meetings was abolished.
The qualifica­
tions for membership were lowered so that females became
eligible for membership at fifteen, and the number of
Morgan, 121; Columbia Missouri Statesman, March 26,
1890; California Newspaper, fame 6, 1&B9,
-98locals necessary for a county organization was reduced
from ten to five.
At the meeting the next year, only
thirty delegates appeared, and the once large income had
dropped so low that the officers* salaries had not been
paid and the delegates were asked to secure their travel­
ing expenses from the county Alliances.
The period of
prosperity beginning in 1890, the virtual passage of the
national organization to the third party in 1891, and the
divided opinion of the state leaders destroyed the Farm41
ers* Alliance in Missouri.
The internal difficulties in Missouri grew out of
the money question.
The third party men, who had flocked
into the Alliance, found no trouble in accepting the sub­
treasury system.
They had preached a fiat currency since
their affiliation with the Greenback party in the seven­
ties and felt that they were making a concession in offer­
ing a new proposal to secure a currency on non-perishable
farm products and land.
The more conservative Democratic
members, under the leadership of U. S. Hall, who was
classed among the sound money men in 1895, could not ac­
cept the subtreasury scheme.
California Newspaper, September 10, 1891; March 19,
1892; MemphTSnBa^mers* Union, June 23, September 8,
1892; Brookfield Ga~zette, August 26, 1893; Sedalia
Gazette. August 16,
,~and 18, 1890; see also a
Tetter of H. L. Houcks, national president of the
Southern Alliance in Memphis Farmers* Union, June 1,
1893. Both men and women were eligible to member­
-99As the election of 1890 approached, it became evident
that the ideal situation envisaged in the declaration of
purposes would not operate in an actual situation:
Without disturbing political party lines or par­
ty affiliations, or provoking partisan feelings
or strife, we shall boldly enter into the discus­
sion and investigation of all public measures,
and governmental policies that have a direct or
a remote bearing on the productive industries of
the country and its material welfare generally;
approving the good and condemning the bad, offerthrough the ballot and other means in our reach
such remedies for existing evils and threatening
dangers as we believe public interest demands.42
In order to make a concerted effort to secure their de­
mands it was first necessary to reach an agreement upon
In reaching such an agreement, each member or lead­
er would naturally be somewhat influenced by the ideas and
theories which he had acquired as a member of a political
There would also be a tendency for some men of the
different parties to try to shape the program of reforms
so that their own party might profit.
No agreement had been reached in the Missouri Alli­
ance as to what stand should be made on the subtreasury
system adopted at St. Louis in 1889.
This was to be de­
cided at the annual meeting at Sedalia in August, 1890.
Because of the political significance which the decision
came to have, the question of adopting the subtreasury
system was an important one.
The election of 1888 had
proved to the Democrats that they could not afford to lose
Morgan, 138.
Since the Alliance was teaching doctrines much
like those which the third party had advocated for a long
time, the third party might fall heir to the program of
education which was in progress.
If this should happen,
the Democratic party was likely to lose enough votes to
defeat it in 1890.
All depended on the decision made by
the Alliance in August.
The more conservative Democrats
who were not members of the Alliance might be led to sup­
port an Alliance platform without the. subtreasury system
but not with it.
If the Alliance adopted it and the Demo­
cratic platform did not include it, some of the farmers
might go to the third party.
The Democratic politicians
in the Alliance were thus forced to make a determined ef43
fort to defeat the adoption.
At the meeting in Sedalia the third party men met in
oauous to determine how they would proceed.
They had
the help of the national lecturer, Ben Terrell of Texas,,
and C. W. Macune, the founder of the Texas Alliance and
editor of the national magazine.
The Democrats, however,
were able to carry the moderates to their point of view on
the critical motions.
U. S. Hall, the conservative Demo-
St. Louis Republic. August 21, 1889; May 11, 1890;
California iNewspaper, November 20, 1889; January 30,
July £4, 1890.
St. Louis Republic, August 15, 16, and 17, 1890; St.
Louis Globe-Democrat, August 15, 16, and 17, 1890;
Sedalia Gazette, August 15, 16, and 17, 1890. Each
covered the convention well.
cratic lecturer, was elected president, but the conserva­
tive motion to abolish the discussion of politics in local
Alliance meetings was defeated.
The third party press had
bitterly criticized Phil Chew, the editor of the St. Louis
Journal of Agriculture, for his attacks on the subtreasury
system adopted at St. Louis in 1889,
again selected as the state organ.
but his Journal was
The proposal to adopt
the subtreasury scheime was delayed until some of the dele­
gates had gone home, no doubt with the intention of using
the same strategy which was used to secure its adoption
at the national meeting at St. Louis in 1889.
The de­
bate lasted throughout the night, but Hall and his support46
ers won and the subtreasury scheme was not adopted.
was agreed, however, that Macune and Terrell should tour
the state to explain the plan to the members.
the victory for the Democrats was not complete, the warn­
ing of a third party paper that an attempt would be made
to steal the State Alliance* for the Democrats proved to
be well founded.
Hicks, Populist Revolt, 186-187.
As delegate from Missouri to Ocala, Hall fought the
subtreasury system but the third party men won
there. California Newspaper, December 11, 1890;
January 1, 1891.
California Newspaper, July 24, 1890. This prediction
was made after the Democratic party had adopted a
platform at their nominating convention that met all
the demands of the Farmers* Alliance except the sub­
treasury system.
102Although the Alliance had lost 25 per cent of its
membership before the next annual meeting, the Democrats
were given a fright when the third party men were able to
elect the officers.
President Hall had warned the Demo­
crats during the summer that the third party men were
planning to do this, but the Democrats had either become
apathetic or dissatisfied with the leadership in their
own party.
Although those who favored the subtreasury
system were in control, they referred it to the counties
for consideration instead of adopting it outright.
this meeting the membership decreased so rapidly that the
Farmers1 Alliance ceased to be an influence, but the Popu­
list party into which the third party men went in 1891
continued the program of education to which the Alliance
had given so much emphasis.
The educational activities of the Southern Alliance
and the Missouri Alliance which was affiliated with it,
were directed and coordinated by the national and state
Realizing that the farmers must first agree
among themselves upon a series of reforms before an effec­
tive demand could be made on Congress or the state legis­
lature, they assumed the task of bringing about this
It became their problem to convince the farmers
California Newspaper, July 4, 18, and 25, September 3,
18.91; St. Louis Republic, August 26 and 30, 1891;
Memphis 'Farmers* Union, September 10, 1891; Hicks,
Populist Revolt, 202.
that the platforms of demands, made at the annual meetings,
were necessary to give the farmer an equal economic oppor­
tunity and bring about prosperity.
If their object could
be attained, the farmers of the nation would be united in
their demand for national legislation and those of the
state for state legislation.
To seoure this unanimity of
thought, they planned to present their pupils with an
analysis of economic conditions, indicate the causes, and
then suggest the remedies.
The national and state organs,
the reform press, lecturers, and directed discussions in
the local meetings served to disseminate the information,
arguments, and pleas of those who directed the educational
St. Louis Republic, September 15, 1891; the files of
almost any reform newspaper during 1889-1891; The
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
comp 1led~~W~£Ee St. Louis Journal of1 Agriculture.
147; Hunt, 34; California Newspaper, July 9, 1891.
The ability of U. S. Hall in directing such a program
is undoubted. He was state lecturer 1889-1890 and
president 1890-1891. He was trained in law, served
two terms in Congress, was president of a small Mis­
souri college for a few years, and operated a private
school in Columbia, Missouri. His speeches to farm
groups were not the wild harangues of the agitator
but closely developed arguments full of allusions to
John Stuart Mill and other economists. A sample of
his type of thinking and composition is found in a
letter which he published for his constituents in
1895, when he was trying to convince them that silver
coinage at 16 to 1 would be detrimental to their in­
terests. To impress them with the age of the theory
that a bad money will drive a good money out of circu­
lation, he assured them that Nicoli Oresme had stated
the theory in 1366 and that Copernicus understood and
stated it before Gresham whose name the law bears.
St. Louis Republic, July 23, 1895.
104The national and state officers communicated with the
members and local officers through the national and state
organs for which all the local lodges and many members
The reform newspapers also served as a means
of communication because they often printed letters from
the officers to the members.
Besides giving the officers
a way to keep in direct touch with the members of the lo­
cals, the reform press and the official organs also as­
sumed an important part in presenting information and ar­
To keep the editors from vitiating each other’s
work with quarreling and disagreements among themselves,
the Reform Press Association was formed at Ocala, Florida,
in 1890.
The members agreed to support the annual plat­
forms of the Southern Alliance or suffer the penalty of
being summarily expelled from the organization by the
Before the editors had arranged to correlate
their own editorial policies, the officers of the Missouri
Alliance had found it necessary to stop bickering among
them for the good of the educational program.
After the
Reform Press Association was formed the national executive
committee of the Southern Alliance tried to aid the edi­
tors by threatening to boycott unfriendly newspapers and
those who advertised in them.
Drew, Political Science quarterly, VI (June, 1891),
310; California Newspaper, August 26, 1890; see also
August 14, 1890, quoting the Versailles Statesman.
The same strict discipline is (Footnote to page 105.)
-105Another means of disseminating information was
through the lecturers who traveled about over the country.
These tours were often sponsored and financed by the state
Sometimes the local lodges of the counties
were urged to secure lecturers who would travel over the
county to address the small groups in their regular meet­
Picnics and barbecues were promoted by the county
Alliances, and speakers like A, J. Streeter, Jesse Harper,
J. B, Weaver, U, S. Hall, C. W. Macune, Ben Terrell, and
others of greater or lesser note were invited to address
the large crowds which gathered*
In order to coordinate
the type of information given by the elected county and
local lecturers, the desired information was passed down
to them from state lecturer through those in the congres­
sional districts whom he appointed and instructed.
called conventions of their county subordinates who in51
structed those elected by the local lodges.
At the very base of the educational system was the
local lodges to which the members went at least once per
month, and often twice per month.
The educational possi-
(Footnote continued from page 104,) indicated by
Predident Hallfs arbitrary expulsion of those county
organizations which nominated county tickets in 1890,
Wright, 67-68, quoting a personal interview with
U. S. Hall.
California Newspaper, June 20, 1889; August 28, 1890;
March 19, 1661; Memphis Farmersf Union, September 8,
1892: St. Louis Republic, July 28, 1688; August 22,
1890; Alex M. Arnett, TEe Populist Movement in
Georgia (New York, 1922}, 100,
-106bilities of association and discussion were understood by
the leaders in the Alliance*
change of
"Through discussion and ex­
ideas the members arrive at clear and well
defined views of the evils from which they are suffering,
and at once set about to devise a remedy," said the offi52
eial historian of the organization*
Since undirected
discussion in the locals would have been too chaotic to
have contributed to the educational scheme, it was careful
ly guided*
The national officers suggested questions which
might serve as topics for conversation or debate*
problem to be discussed was often advertised in a reform
newspaper which printed an accompanying article on the
problem to provoke the thought of the members before they
went to the meeting*
Sometimes the subject would be dis­
cussed by an outside or a local speaker after which the
meeting would be turned into an open forum*
At other
times, the open forum discussion would be preceded by a
debate on the subject which was to be emphasized*
Morgan, 206*
California Newspaper, January 31, May 9, July 1, Sep­
tember 26, November 7 and 26, 1889* The following
program was advertised for a local in Moniteau County
which was badly infected with the third party fever
in 1890. It is ambitious enough to occupy a longer
period than the one evening in which it was presented.
1. Song-r"Poor Kansas Fools"; 2. History of the
Order; 3* Aims and Purposes of the Organization;
4* A paper and discussion of the same; 5. Speeoh—
"Are We a Free People"; 6* Song— "Almost Persuaded"
[A parody, the substance of which was that the voter
was almost persuaded to leave the old party]; 7*
What the order has accomplished; 8* What is money?;
9. Song— "Good-bye My Party Good-bye." California
Newspaper. October 2. 1890. (Footnote on page 107.)_
-107The program of education itself would stimulate the
urge to read.
Those who wished to participate in the open
forum discussions or in conversation with their neighbors
were forced to read the newspapers, magazines, tracts,
circulars, and hooks that were being produced for their
The stimulation of this urge was not confined
to subtle means.
Speakers and newspapers urged the farm­
ers to read, the organization brought pressure to bear on
its members to subscribe to the official organ, books were
offered by the reform newspapers as an inducement to se­
cure subscriptions, and publishers advertised their wares
in the reform press.
As a result intellectual curiosity
was aroused, a desire to learn was inculcated, and such
books as those of Henry George, Edward Bellamy, W. H. Har­
vey, and J. B. Weaver found ready sales among a group of
people who had read little besides the newspaper and farm
magazines before this time.
Theories were developed and
the discussion of an income tax, the single tax, government
ownership, abolition of private property, fiat money, and
(Continued from page 106.) At one time the national
officers suggested these questions for discussions
in the locals; What is money? What are the uses of
money? Is money a commodity? Who furnishes the money
for the country? Who ought to furnish it? How
should money be furnished to the people? California
Newspaper, July 9, 1891.
Arnett, 100; Hicks, Populist Revolt, 131; History of
the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc., compilecT
by the St. Louis Journal of Agriculture, 202; Cali­
fornia Newspaper, I/tay 16,~"l8g9T
108irnity of labor made information on such questions common
One contemporary said in 1890 that the program of
education had already done much good in developing tastes
and habits of reading and in the purification of politics
by defeating "rings and wirepullers."
Another said that
the Alliance and the Grange became national universities
which employed hundreds of college educated and selftaught teachers who were able to "stimulate thought and
lend inspiration to their followers."
Their methods,
devices, and techniques indicate the work of masters in
agitation and education,
but this writer, who was excep­
tionally friendly toward the farm organizations, probably
flattered them.
They might have furnished the direction
and inspiration for the whole program, but in Missouri the
newspapers, farm magazines, and farmers* institutes de­
serve some praise for doing a share of the work.
With all these agencies of education trying to exert
the same effect upon the fanner during a period when he
was restive and dissatisfied because of financial diffi55.
Frank Basil Tracy, "Rise and Doom of the Populist
Party," Forum, XVI (October, 1893), 248; Hicks,
Populistkevolt, 132.
History of the Alliance, the Agricultural Wheel, etc.,
compiled ty tHe St• Louis Journal of Agriculture, 236«
C. S. Walker, "The Farmers* Movement,” Annals of the
American Academy of Political and Social. Science, XV
(March, 1894) , 797^7^1
-109culties, there came a gradual transformation in his char­
acter and pattern of thinking.
As his business gradually
approached that of a pure commercial enterprise, he was
slowly led to see that government intervention to control
railroads and monopolies was necessary.
His interest in
government and politics was aroused by the attempts to
secure the legislation which would protect him from ex­
When railroad and corporation lobbies defeat­
ed his purpose, he sought for and demanded reforms in the
political system which would make it more sensitive to the
public will.
The national character of the organizations
into which he went broadened his conception of economic
problems and caused him to turn more and more to the na­
tional government for the relief which his state government
seemed unable to give him.
He learned in the process to
think in national rather than local and state terms.
Since the eighties were not only a transition period
in social and economic environment but also in the ideas
and viewpoints of the farmers, a corresponding change in
the experiences of political parties was almost certain to
During the seventies, the Democratic farmers, who
comprised the majority in their party, had acquiesced in
the leadership of the faction which advocated that no re­
strictions be placed upon the operations of railroads and
other corporations.
If they had submitted because they
were unaware of their own Interests or were inarticulate
110in party councils as a result of a lack of determination
and organization, the agitation in the eighties would
arouse them to action.
Since keeping the Republicans out
of state office had probably been the largest factor con­
tributing to their acquiescence, they would probably move
cautiously if they were able to wrest control from the
conservatives in their own party.
Although the Democratic state platform in 1884 was
silent on all economic policies except the tariff, the
factional strife in the period 1881-1885 and the progres­
sive legislation enacted in 1885 and 1887 reveal that
there were other issues beneath the surface.
The contem­
porary newspapers of neither party chose to explain that
the true issue between the two factions was the question
of supplementing the constitution of 1875 with the neces­
sary legislation to make the regulation of the railroads
The Republican newspapers during the campaign chose
to emphasize the point that the two factions were Confed­
erate versus Union.
This can be easily explained because
such a designation would serve as a trap to catch Demo­
cratic votes among those irreconcilable Union Democrats
who were still living in the sixties.
It would also have
shown poor political sense in the Republicans, had they
oalled attention to the fact that the dominant faction of
the Democrats promised to pass laws which would carry into
effect those policies which the Greenbackers had been ad­
vocating since 1874.
In like manner it would have been
liapoor campaign strategy for Democratic newspapers to em­
phasize the issue which might split the vote in the elec­
tion as it had split the delegates in some of the local
conventions in 1880,
As a consequence no satisfactory
name for the opposing Democratic factions appeared in the
campaign of 1884*
The railroad issue had entered the campaign for the
nomination of the Democratic gubernatorial candidate in
The proponents of strict regulation had centered
their support on John S. Marmaduke.
As Railroad Commis­
sioner from 1875 to 1880 and as editor of the St* Louis
Journal and Farmer he had assumed the leadership of that
group, and asked for their support again in 1884*
the General Assembly met in January, 1885, the Globe-Democrat, a Republican daily in St. Louis, revealed that the
issue1 between the factions was no secret.
It reported
that the farmers in the legislature had organized to pro­
mote "Granger bills and paralyze railroad bills."
Since there had been 150,000 Grangers in Missouri in
1875 and only 35,045 Greenbackers in 1880 who seemed to
carry on the Granger program in their platform, there must
have been a large number in the Democratic party who still
adhered to the views which had resulted in the Granger
Columbia Missouri Statesman, March 21, 1880; St. Louis
Globe-Democrat, January iff, 1885.
laws of 1875.
This group, who might be designated as the
farmer element in the Democratic party, formed the nucleus
around which the reformers of 1884 and the next few years
could collect enough votes to capture the control of the
party and force reform laws through the legislature.
The faction in St. Louis, which wanted the railroads
regulated in 1880, was stirred to still greater action
when the census of 1880 showed that St. Louis was losing
in a race with Chicago for commercial supremacy.
Part of
the blame was placed on the railroads, which the St. Louis
Globe-Democrat said were owned by Easterners who had mortgages on Chicago.
Those who were interested in the iron
and steel industry complained that railroad rates favored
Birmingham, Alabama.
The lumbermen claimed that discrimi­
nation against native lumber hindered the growth of their
Other business men resented paying tribute to
Jay Gould, whose ownership of terminal facilities in St.
Louis permitted him to levy a heavy tariff on other rail4
roads coming into the city.
In order to enhance the commercial possibilities of
the city, this Democratic faction demanded state regulation
2. Solon Justus Buck, The Granger Movement (Cambridge,
1913), 59-60; St. LouTs Republican,Inarch 22, 1887.
3. St. Louis Globe-Demoorat, January 17, 1885.
St. Louis Republican, February 1, 1887; Ninth Annual
Report of the board of Railroad Commissioners of the
siate oT~Missouri (JeiFferson City, 1883), 22-25•
-114of railroads, a Lakes-to-Gulf waterway, and a reduction of
the tariff*
In this way railroad discrimination against
St. Louis could he stopped, and trade with South America
St. Louis would then become the natural center
for the trans-shipment of the South American trade by both
water and rail*
The strength of this faction was aug­
mented in 1884 by the support of the St. Louis Republican,
which had shifted its policy*
In 1880 it warned the Mis­
sourians who wanted more railroads that construction had
ceased in Iowa when laws unfriendly to them were passed.
In 188S the Republican championed the switchmen who went
on a strike, and severely criticized the railroads*
The factional troubles in St. Louis, which had split
some of the city conventions in 1880, eventually involved
Governor Crittenden*
In 1881 he demanded that the St*
Louis police board enforce the law which required saloons
to close on Sunday*
When his orders were not obeyed, he
removed some of the members of the board and replaced them
with others more amenable to his desires*
Two years after-
ward a St. Louis grand jury exposed a close connection
among the police board, the coal oil inspector who had
Ered E. Haynes, Third Party Movements Since the Civil
War with Special Reference to Iowa (Iowa City, 1916),
SS6:““Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia, 1881, 609-610.
St. Louis Republican.January 21, 1880; October 16 and
18, 1883.
115been appointed by Crittenden, the Ed Butler machine, and
the (gamblers in the city.
Crittenden was called upon to
dismiss some more of the police board so that the laws
could be enforced, but he refused to comply and criticized
the gambling activities of the Merchants* Exchange where
the indignation meeting* which demanded the removals, was
There seems to be little doubt that the police
board had been guilty of loose administration, and that
Crittenden*s opponents were making political capital out
of the fuss.
Crittenden*s moves were unfortunate for his
faction in St. Louis because the loss of the wets in 1881
and the reformers in 1883 gave the control of the city
conventions to his enemies in 1884.
The drought of 1881 and the depression which began in
1882 had aroused the old discontent among the farmers and
made them more militant.
The state platform of 1882 plain­
ly shows the same influence which had brought a denounce­
ment of national banks and demands for more currency and
congressional control of the coinage in 1878.
Demands were
made for the coinage of both gold and silver, for the reg­
ulation of the issue of currency to avoid fluctuation, and
for a tariff reduced to the basis of providing only for
St. Louis Republican, October 14 and 27, 1883; Colum­
bia Missour1 s t atesman, August 2, November 2 and 30,
1885':'" Si. LouTsHBlssour 1 Republican, January 23, 1877;
Thomas T. Crittenden to James S. Rollins, December 1,
1883, James S. Rollins Manuscript Collection, State
Historical Society of Missouri, Columbia.
The centralizing tendencies of the Republicans,
"whereby corporate power, unjustly granted and fostered by
the general government, is enabled to crystalize into mo­
nopolies,** were condemned, and the extravagance of the
federal government was criticized.
No mention was made of the necessity for regulating
railroads in Missouri, but Governor Crittenden told the
next legislature that a continuance of the same wisdom
which had characterized past legislation would encourage
the construction of railroads, bring capital to the state
and develop the millions of acres of Missouri lands.
laws passed by the legislature, however, indicated that the
members of the General Assembly might not have shared his
They passed only a few more regulatory laws than
the last legislature but a move was made in the direction
of making the enforcement of railroad legislation a duty
of the state rather than the privilege of an aggrieved
Any railroad which failed to post notices of
rate changes twenty days in advance or to keep a bulletin
board to show how far trains were behind schedule was made
Official Directory of Missouri, 1883 (St. Louis, 1883)
r n n --------------- * --------------
Floyd C. Shoemaker and others, Messages and Proclama­
tions of the Governors of the State of Missouri, is
volumes (Columbia, id£2^T930), VI, 3<T7•
liable to a fine*
Infractions of the law were thus made
criminal rather than civil offenses,
John S. Marmaduke was campaigning for the gubernatori­
al nomination shortly after the legislature adjourned, and
the troubles over the police in St. Louis during October,
November, and December kept the political pot boiling un­
til the election preliminaries of the next year.11
factional struggle within the Democratic party was already
well developed when John 0*Day, attorney for the St. Louis
and San Francisco Railroad, called the state central com­
mittee to meet in St. Louis on April 10.
O'Day, who had
been defeated for chairman in 1880, had been re-elected in
He and his followers lost the first round to the
Confederates in the committee meeting.
The Committee decided to call two state conventions,
one to eleot delegates to the national convention in Chi­
cago, and one to nominate candidates for state offices.
The question arose as to whether the number of delegates
to the state conventions should be based on the vote for
Hancock in 1880 or for some state officer in 1882.
the size of the delegation from the counties and cities
depended on the number of ballots cast in some previous
election, the decision of the question was important.
Laws of Missouri, 1883, 32nd General Assembly (Jef­
ferson City, 1653),' 5(3, 51-52.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, March 9, 1883.
-118this case the vote of 1880 would give St. Louis fifteen
more delegates than that of 1882 and the shift in the
counties would work to the advantage of the Confederates
with whom the dominant St. Louis faction would join.
Committee decided to use the vote cast in 1880 and thereby
gave the advantage to the Confederates.
The St. Louis Republican jubilantly published, "Bopeep 0*Day has lost his sheep," but the tune was changed
when the convention to elect delegates to the national
convention met in St. Louis on June 24.
It then could
say, "Nothing appeals more strongly to rural delegates
than a special train, if there is John O'Day does not know
0*Day and Morrison Munford, editor of the Kansas
City Times. were elected delegates at large on the first
ballot by the Union faction which favored a protective
David R. Francis and Charles H. Mansur, both mem­
bers of the other faction, were elected on the second bal­
lot, however#
The convention adopted a resolution favoring
St. Louis Republican, February 4 and 5, April 11,
1884. It will be recalled that the Confederates
represented largely the farmers in the Democratic
party and opposed the economic theories of the Union
Democrats «tifi ex-Y/higs who favored leniency toward
railroads and corporations as a means of promoting
the economic welfare of the state.
St. Louis Republican, May 7, 1884.
Ibid., June 26, 1884. The story was told that 0»Day
secured the votes of the delegates from the south­
western counties by transporting them to St. Louis
free of charge on a special train over the St. Louis
and San Francisco railroad.__________________________
a tariff for revenue only, but a motion to bind the dele­
gation to vote for it as a unit at the national convention
was ruled out of order by the chairman who was a Union
The actions of the Missouri delegates at the national
convention in Chicago reveals the nature of the compromise
on the matter of the delegates at large and the resolution
on the tariff.
The Union faction had been successful in
securing a majority of the district delegates, and al­
though they had been charged with using high-handed meth­
ods in some places, the state convention had confirmed
Having a majority of the delegates to the national
convention they elected John O ’Lay chairman of the delega­
tion and William H. Phelps, his assistant attorney for the
St. Louis and San Francisco Railroad, as Missouri’s repre16
sentative on the resolutions committee.
Phelps showed his protectionist leanings in the ee-!
lection of the chairman of the resolutions committee.
voted for George P. Converse, a protectionist, rather than
for William R. Morrison, who had introduced a bill in Con­
gress in 1884 which would have lowered the tariff.
St. Louis Republican angrily called attention to the fact
Phelps had acted contrary to the only plank in the Missouri
St. Louis Republican, June 26, 1884.
Ibid., June 29, July 10, 1884.
-120convention platform, and to the vote of Missouri's four­
teen congressmen on the Morrison bill.
The chairman of
the Greene County Democratic Committee and two newspaper
editors of Springfield telegraphed Henry Watterson that
nine-tenths of the Democrats in Phelps' district disap­
proved Phelps' actions, and a mass meeting of Democrats
from Laclede, Dallas, Webster and Wright counties criti17
cized him unmercifully.
The straddling, meaningless tariff plank written into
the national Democratic platform, the coming convention
to nominate state candidates, and Republican meddling soon
caused the incident to be forgotten.
The Republican press
and Republican leaders began early in the year to predict
and foment a Democratic split.
John S. Marmaduke, the de­
feated candidate for nomination in 1880, was gaining so
much popularity that his success seemed assured in 1883.
Since he had been a Confederate Major General, the Repub­
licans insisted that it would be an insult to a Union man
to elect him for governor, and one of the leaders, Robert
T. Van Horn of Kansas City, was advising the nomination of
a non-partisan ticket to catch Greenbackers, Prohibition­
ists, and dissatisfied Democrats of the "Rollins stripe"
before Marmaduke was nominated.
St. Louis Republican, July 9, 10, 11, and 13, 1884.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, July 22, 1884; St. Louis
Republican, July 22, 1854.
-121Although the Confederate faction of the Democratic
party had a controlling majority at the state convention
at Sedalia, concessions were made to the Union faction and
a strong ticket was nominated.
John S. Manneduke was nomi­
nated on the first ballot, and Albert P. Morehouse of Nod­
away County, a Union man, was nominated for lieutenantgovernor.
Michael K. McGrath, a St. Louis Irishman and
member of the Union faction, as candidate for secretary of
state, would make an appeal to the Irish vote.
As the
candidate for state treasurer, James M. Seibert of Cape
Girardeau County, would not only serve as a bid for the
Germans, who might want to bolt the Republican party on
account of the nomination of James G. Blaine, but would
also appease southeast Missouri Democrats who had been
clamoring for recognition.
The other nominees were John
Walker of Howard County, auditor; Robert McCulloch of
Cooper Comity, register of lands; W. G. Downing of Clay
County, railroad commissioner; and H. C. Brockmeyer and
James Craig, electors at large.
Crittenden was given the indorsement which he had
wanted at St. Louis by the inclusion of a plank in the
platfdrm which generously praised his administration for
protection of persons and property, and honesty and econo­
my in government.
The only statement of economic policy
in the platform, "That the Democracy, as the champion of
St. Louis Republican. August 13, 14, and 15, 1884.
the people, reiterates its intense hostility to the mo­
nopolistic tendencies of the times, and declares its pur­
pose to hettle for the masses in their struggle for su­
premacy, n was so general that the Union faction could accept it without difficulty.
Since John O'Day was not a
candidate for chairman of the state central committee, the
expected trial of strength over his election failed to ma­
terialize, and the convention closed with what appeared
to be complete harmony.
The Democratic problem had been to avoid a threatenedsplit, but closing an open split was the task which faced
the Republicans when the preliminaries for the election of
1884 opened.
In the summer of 1882 the St. Louis Globe-
Democrat began a series of attacks on the Chauncey I.
Filley faction, which had been "Bitter-enders” for Grant
in 1880.
The trouble apparently arose over Filley*s
policy of fusing with the.Greenbackers in the congression­
al elections to keep the Democrats out of office.
sudden growth in Republican strength in 1880 had enabled
the Greenbackers to send four congressmen to Washington,
and it appeared that Filley had given too much in the
Under the leadership of Robert T. Van Horn of
Kansas City a convention was called, to which the Filley
faction refused to go.
A full state ticket was nominated,
Official Directory of Illssour 1 for 1881 (St. Louis,
1881), 94.
123a new state committee was elected, and the practice of
fusing was denounced.
Unhappily for the Silkstockings, as the Van Horn fac­
tion was calLed, the Democrats were able to carry all four­
teen congressional districts in 1882.
This had the effect
of proving Filley*s and the Hoodlums* policy was not so
bad after all.
Even Van Horn seemed to have changed, if
his suggestion about a non-partisan ticket in July, 1884,
expressed his attitude.
Some Republicans had been suspi­
cious all the time that the principal cause of the trouble
had been the dispensation of the national patronage.
inter-factional struggle to name the postraabter of St.
Louis in January, 1884, seemed to confirm this belief and
also brought into the open the maneuvers to control the
delegation to the national convention.
Filley, who was aligned with the Stalwarts in nation­
al politics, seemed to have the advantage at first, but
Van Horn’s announcement that Arthur might have the state
delegation if he did not Mcut his own throat” seemed to
change the situation.^
In the delay which followed Fil­
ley formed an Arthur Club, and Van Horn published news
St. Louis Republican, March 1, 10, and 12, Septem­
ber 12. 1884: Official Directory of Missouri for
1883. 106-107, ill, 112.
St. Louis Republican, February 20, March 3, 1884.
Ibid., January 16, 1884.
-124that should have sounded hopeful to an aspiring presiden­
tial candidate.
The administration dilemma was eventually
solved in the latter part of February by the appointment
of Rodney D. Wells, who was affiliated with neither fac­
Thus, with Filley disappointed and Van Horn some­
what chagrined, the Republicans prepared to select dele­
gates to the national convention.24
Both of the Republican state central committees is­
sued calls for a convention at Sedalia on April 9.
delegates upon arrival met in the same hall and organized.
Filley and Van Horn pleaded for harmony and the Silkstock­
ings, who had a majority, demonstrated a tendency to com­
They elected all their candidates for delegates
at large and the chairman of the state central committee,
but confirmed without question the committeemen and dis­
trict delegates to the national convention who were nomi­
nated by Hoodlum majorities in some of the district dele­
gations at the state convention.
The Hoodlums, of whom
there were about 213 among the 520 delegates, indicated
by their actions, however, that there was no spirit of
forgiveness among them.
They kept the convention in a
continual uproar with shouts, booes, and hisses.
St. Louis Republican, January 14 and 16, February 1,
18, 24, and 26, March 1, 1884.
Ibid.. March 13, April 9 and 10, 1884.
125Although the Hoodlums had lost in the factional fight
in Missouri, they eventually had their revenge at the na­
tional convention in Chicago.
They were supporters of
James G. Blaine, while the Silkstockings tended to favor
Arthur but were agreed only in their opposition to Blaine.
Only one vote in the convention exposed the temper or the
strength of the two factions, and it could be taken as
nothing but a measure of the intense dislike for Blaine.
When the National Committee submitted the name of Powell
Clayton of Arkansas for temporary chairman the anti-Blaine
forces nominated John R. Lynch, a Mississippi negro.
many other factors entered into this vote to say that the
seventeen Missouri delegates who voted against Lynch were
for Blaine.
The Blaine delegates were in the group, but
since John B. Henderson, H. £• Havens, and B. M. Prentiss,
who were elected delegates at large at Sedalia, voted
against Lynch, some probably voted for Clayton because
Lynch was a negro or because the move was against common
It seems safe to conclude that the thirteen
Missourians who voted for Lynch were bitterly opposed to
They were with the minority though, and Blaine*s
subsequent nomination placed Filley in the fortunate posi­
tion from the patronage standpoint of having been a sup-
porter of Blaine before Blaine was nominated at Chicago.
St. Louis Republican, June 4 and 7, 1884.
126Fill ey, with the possibility of controlling the
future patronage, was able to dictate party affairs in the
state and arrange his deals and fusions as he pleased.
The Greenbackers were also in the right temper to trade.
Their four congressmen had been swept out of office in
1882, and the Democratic legislature in special session
had gerrymandered the state so as to ruin their future op­
The districts in the northwest part of the
state were made narrower east and west and extended south­
ward so as to include some of the strong Democratic coun­
ties along the river.
In this way the old ninth and tenth
districts, which had sent Greenbackers to Congress, were
made parts of the new second, third, and fourth that were
safely Democratic.
In the southwest, where the Greenback­
ers had held a balance of power, Republican copnties were
grouped to make a Republican district, ease the pressure
from R. P. Bland’s district which joined it on the east,
and remove enough Republican and Greenback votes from the
old seventh, which lay to the north and east, to make it
a sure Democratic sixth district.
The Greenbackers wanted
Before tracing the steps by which the Republicans and
Greenbackers consummated a fusion, it is necessary to in­
troduce a fourth party, which made its appearance in
Official Directory of Missouri for 1881, 32; for
1BB&7T G 2-
-127Missouri politics in 1884 and played a part in the fusion
negotiations and the election.
The Prohibition Alliance
had been active as a pressure group for some years, but
began to assume a more militant attitude in 1881.
It was
the members of this group who pricked Crittenden’s con­
science about enforcing the Sunday law in St. Louis.
Their principal aim was to force the legislature to allow
the people an opportunity to vote on the proposition of
placing a prohibition amendment in the state constitution.
They found serious opponents in the Confederate faction in
the Democratic party who were able to rebuff the Prohibi­
tionists by putting a plank in the party platform of 1882
which declared that Democrats traditionally "opposed any
legislation of mere individual conscience" and favored
"the largest personal liberty consistent with public wel28
This drove the Prohibitionists to increased efforts,
but again they failed to carry the legislature to their
way of thinking in 1883.
In a meeting at Warrensburg soon
after the legislature adjourned, they resolved to vote for
no candidate who refused to take a pledge to support their
Marmaduke was campaigning at the time, and the
president of the Missouri Prohibition Alliance, John A.
Brooks, sent Marmaduke a letter to determine his viev/s.
Appletonfs Annual Cyclopedia, 1879, 643; Columbia
Missouri Statesman, June 24, 1881.
128Marmaduke hedged on the question by saying that he would
heed a call of the people and would stand on their prin­
ciples as stated in the platform, but boldly admitted that
he was personally opposed to prohibition legislation.
From that time the Prohibitionists considered Marmaduke
their worst enemy.
One week after the state Democratic convention of
1884 failed to say anything about the prohibition question
in its platform, the Prohibitionists met in a state con­
Several of the leaders opposed the idea of a
separate ticket which would have no chance to win, and
warned that fusion would be useless.
Other counsel was
taken, however, and John A. Brooks was nominated for gov­
Henry Eshbaugh, county chairman of the Jefferson
County Grange and Greenback candidate for Congress and
United States Senator in 1878, was placed on the ticket
as lieutenant-governor.
Since they nominated no other
candidates for state offices, Brooks and Eshbaugh were
either nominated to help defeat Marmaduke or to serve as
the pawns in trades which they might subsequently want to
t 30
Jefferson City Daily Tribune, July 12, 1883; Apple­
ton's ATmnfll Cyclopedla, 1583, 547; St, Louis Republie an, Octob er 18, I8t~s<i; July 25, 1884,
St. Louis Republican, April 21 and 16, August 20,
-129The Greenbackers met next, and according to agreement
with the Republicans did not nominate any candidate, but
authorized the state central committee to select them.
Some were opposed to fusion, but they could muster only
forty votes out of 100 on the minority report of the reso­
lutions committee to nominate a full ticket.
The nearest
approach to nominating a candidate was an indorsement in
the platform which declared Nicholas Ford the proper man
to lead a combined movement to oust the Democrats from
the offices which they had held so long.
In order to make
fusion with the Republicans easier they omitted the money
plank which had been in all their earlier platforms.
win the support of the Prohibitionists they severely
criticized the last legislature for failing to submit a
prohibition amendment to the voters, but refused to re­
place Ford, a wholesale liquor dealer, with John A.
Brooks, as the Prohibitionists wanted them to do.
The Greenback leaders were angry over the attitude
taken by the Republicans in their convention at Jefferson
City on September 20.
They had kept their part of the
bargain not to nominate officers and had omitted their
money plank to make fusion easier, but the Republicans in­
sisted upon nominating some candidates.
The anti-fusion-
ists in the Republican party would not agree to such a
complete surrender t° "the state central committee, and the
St. Louis Republican. August 21, 1884._______________
130Greenback-Republican conference committee agreed that some
nominations might be made.
Ford was indorsed for governor)
H, M. Starkloff of St. Louis was nominated for lieutenantgovernor, J. M, Thompson of Sedalia for treasurer, Jacob
Sands of Adair County for auditor, David Murphy of St,
Louis for attorney-general, and David Wagner for judge of
the supreme court.
All were men who had been long identi­
fied with the party except David Murphy, who as a recent
addition from the Democrats^ would serve to draw dissatis­
fied Democrats and Irish voters.
The state central com­
mittee was authorized to name the other candidates as
well as to fill vacancies which might appear in. the elec32
toral ticket.
The Prohibitionist leaders, who had been present at
both the Greenback and Republican conventions, were less
successful at Jefferson City than they had been at the
Greenback convention in Kansas City.
The Republican plat­
form, unlike that of 1882, was silent on the prohibition
The large German vote which might be tempted to
leave the party on account of Blaine Ts nomination was not
given the extra urge to vote with the Democrats because of
a prohibition policy which they opposed.
The Prohibition­
ists tried hard to secure an indorsement of some one other
than Ford because he could not expect to draw many Demo­
cratic votes and their voters would not vote for him even
St. Louis Republican, September 10, 1884.
-131Brooks withdrew.
Since they were unable to secure any
concessions, they must continue in the race with their
fourth party to do Marmaduke as much damage as possible.
They created an opportunity to make trades with Democratic
voters by failing to nominate candidates for legislative
They could then offer to vote for the Democrat­
ic candidates for legislative offices if the Democratic
voters would vote for Brooks.
An analysis of the ballots
cast in November seems to indicate that their policy was
rather effective.
A few days after the Republican convention, the
state central committees of the two fusing parties named
Greenback candidates to. fill the vacant places on the
ticket, which they chose to call the Anti-Bourbon-Fusion.
They also arranged to pool their strength in order to se­
cure electoral votes for their respective presidential
Eight of the Republican electors, who had
been nominated in April, were withdrawn and eight electors
who would vote for Benjamin F. Butler, the Greenback presi34
dential nominee, put in their place.
St. Louis Republican,September 8, 10, and 22, 1884.
Since Brooks received nearly 5,000 more votes than
Eshaugh, and Marmaduke received over 14,000 less
votes than Morehouse, the Democratic nominee for
lieutenant-governor, it seems reasonable to conclude
that about 5,000 Democrats probably voted for Brooks
aud Morehouse instead of voting a straight ticket.
Official Directory of Missouri for 1885 (St. Louis,
St. Louis Republican, September 14, 1884.____________
-132The two parties entered joint tickets in several of
the counties as they had always done and arranged for fu­
sions in the congressional districts as they had done in
There was a difference this time, however, because
the Republicans were able to take advantage of the Demo­
crats' attempt to destroy the Greenback threat by the ger­
rymander of 1882.
In 1880 the Greenbackers named the can­
didates and the Republicans voted for them in order to de­
feat the Democrats, but, in 1884, the Republicans named
the candidates.
The two parties fused in twelve of the
Congressional districts.
In nine of these the Greenback­
ers supported Republican candidates, in two the Greenback
candidates were supported by the Republicans, and in the
other each indorsed the same independent.candidate.
Greenbackers, who had sent four Congressmen to Washington
in 1880, had only two in the race in 1884 and they were
running in strong Democratic districts.
The fusionists, whose slogan might have been "Any­
thing to beat the Democrats," were forced to make their
campaign on the general criticism that Democratic policies
had driven immigration and business from the state.
was evident that they could not use the typical "bloody
shirt" methods employed in other places because there were
many ex-Confederates among the Greenbackers.
They found
St. Louis Republican, July 28, August 20, 26, and 27,
September 5, 9, ld>, 16, 19, 21, 24, 25, 26, and 28,
October 2 and 5. 1 8 8 4 . ______ _______________________
133in the incidents surrounding the overthrow of the James
Gahg» however, an opportunity to develop a version of the
same type of campaign that would suit the conditions in
Early in the year they arraigned the Democratic
administration for the murder of Jesse James, hut after
the Democrats nominated an ex-Confederate for governor,
the fusionists switched their attack upon the Democratic
friendliness toward Frank James.
Governor Crittenden had offered a reward for informa­
tion that would lead to the destruction of the James Gang,
which seemed to make its headquarters in the central west­
ern counties of the state.
It had grown out of the bitter
border warfare during the Civil War and developed a Robin
Hood tradition among the Confederates in that section,
who seemed to get from its depredations a kind of vicari­
ous revenge for the insults and proscriptions placed upon
them by the Union men immediately after the War.
James was killed by a member of his own gang, and the con­
ditions surrounding Governor Crittendenfs subsequent par­
don of the murderer lent credence to the charges that he
had been a partner to the plot.
Suspicions were still
further aroused about the donors of the $20,000 used for
rewards and expenses when Governor Crittenden announced
that none of it had come from the state treasury.
St. Louis Republican, February 27, September 9, 1884.
-134James's surrender In October, 1882 and the unsuccessful
attempts to convict him for the crimes, with which the
Gang was charged, kept the matter before the public through
1883 and 1884.
During 1882 some of the Democratic editors
in Jackson, Lafayette, Clay, and Buchanan counties criti­
cized Crittenden for his illegal methods, and the affair
might have contributed some to the factional fight in
1884, but the nomination of Marmaduke made it a past is37
sue in the Democratic party.
Ira S. Hazeltine, who delivered the keynote speech at
the Greenback convention at Kansas City, said that the fusionists wanted to rid the state of Frank James, Marmaduke,
and the whole gang.
dramatic move.
The Republicans made an even more
Their nominating convention had been sched­
uled to meet in Moberly in September.
In the meantime a
committee promoting a county fair at Moberly invited Frank
James to visit the fair as an attraction.
The Republican
oentral committee chose to accept this as an insult and,
after stating their attitude to the press, changed the
place of meeting to Jefferson City.
The Democratic news­
papers later humorously expressed their amazement at the
lack of fear shown by the Republicans who met at Moberly
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations,
307; Macon Republican, April 20, 188#;
publican, Ootober 7, 16, and 17, 1882;
Globe-Democrat, February 20, 1885.
VI, 303, 305,
St. Louis Re­
St. Louis
-135in congressional district convention while Prank James
was attending the Pair,
The Republican state platform, made at Jefferson City,
was a peculiar document.
It charged that Democratic poli­
cies had driven immigration and capital from the state,
and pleaded with all good citizens to lay aside past dif­
ferences and vote to wrest the state government from the
hands of the Democrats.
State control of corporations
was demanded and the opinion expressed that some means
should be found to settle the disputes between capital and
Most of the platform, however, was designed to
drive a wedge between the Union and Confederate factions
in the Democratic party.
We indict the Bourbon Democracy of Missouri
with persistently ignoring the Union element of
the State, While the Republican party has ob­
literated every disability growing out of the re­
bellion, the Democratic Party still insists in
prosecuting men for their loyalty, and in making
service in war against the government a condition
for the important offices of the State and for
Senators and Representatives in Congress. Against
this policy we protest' as an insult to a Union
State and an example fraught with demoralization
to the patriotism of the youth of the country in
all future times. Also, for its alliance with and
protection of notorious and confessed banditti,
whose presence in Missouri has driven out immigra­
tion from its borders and capital from its indus­
tries. All these have been most offensively re­
peated in the nomination of the present Bourbon
State ticket, at the head of which has been placed
St. Louis Republican. August 31, September 10, 1884.
Official Directory of Missouri for 1885, 97.
a man whose only claim to notoriety was in his
conspicuous position in the army recently waging
war on the government hy which he was educated;
... we believe the time has come in the history
of the State of Missouri when all good citizens,
without regard to past differences,.should lay
aside party prejudices and unite in wresting the
government of the state from the hands of that
The Democrats were forced to make a vigorous campaign
to match that of the Fusionists.
The central committee
made arrangements for a large number of speeches in dif­
ferent parts of the state.
Between September 9 and No­
vember 1, Senator George G. Vest had thirty-three appoint­
ments to fill; Senator Francis M. Cockrell, thirty-six;
Marmaduke, seventeen; and H. C. Brockmeyer, ten.
others of lesser fame and with fewer appointments were
scheduled to make speeches in behalf of the Democratic
To counteract the Republican contention
that Union men were mistreated, the Democrats made use of
the Union men in the party.
Henry C. Brockmeyer, James 0.
Broadhead, R. W. Fyan and Governor Crittenden made speeches
in those counties where a split might occur.
Their best
arguments lay in the fact that there were and had been
many Union men on the Democratic ticket.
In elaborating the theme that Missouri was losing
immigrants and capital, the Republicans found themselves
St. Louis Republican, September 9, 1884.
Ibid., July 26, September 10, October 19, 23, 24, 25,
and 30, 1884.
137at a disadvantage and soon ceased to emphasize this point.
The Democrats were able to prove by the census figures
that Missouri was forging ahead of Indiana and Illinois,
both in rate of population growth and increase in capital
The Democrats ridiculed Nicholas Ford who was a
wholesale liquor dealer and yet was appealing for Prohibi­
tionist votes.
On the Frank James issue, the Democrats
were forced to take a "laugh-it-off" attitude by talking
of the Republicans* ’’fear of an old broken-down outlaw."
The national campaign in Missouri conformed to the
pattern of that year throughout the country.
private life and Blaine’s public life were spread before
the voters, with emphasis placed on all the damning de­
The Democrats followed their usual practice of
dividing the work of the campaign so that the Union men
led the attack on the Republican administration’s prac­
tices and the character of the candidates while the Con43
federates devoted most of their time to issues.
An in­
teresting phase of the national campaign in Missouri re­
sulted from the Germans’ dislike of Blaine.
Emil Preetori-
ous, editor of the Westliche Post, swore immediately after
St. Louis Republican, September 10, 12, and 27,
October 19, 24, and 28, 1884.
Ibid. No contemporary explanation for this practice
was found. It seems logical to conclude that ex-Confederates refrained from making attacks upon Repub­
lican candidates to avoid the charge of harboring
138the nomination that he would not support Blaine, but
threats of starting an opposition German language news­
paper caused him to change his mind.
His partner, Carl
Schurz, continued to campaign against Blaine in the East
and offered his share in the paper for sale after Preeto44
rious changed front.
An examination of the vote in the
German counties in 1880 and 1884 reveals that the greater
share of the Germans in Missouri followed Preetorious
rather than Schurz.
Although the Democrats polled more votes than in 1880
and elected all their candidates for state offices and
presidential electors, the election was not as great a
victory as that of 1882.
They still had a majority in
both houses of the legislature, but they had lost three
senators and thirteen representatives.
The solid delega­
tion of fourteen representatives in Congress was reduced
to twelve.
An old split had again appeared in the fifth
district, composed of Jackson, Johnson, and Lafayette
Nine thousand more votes were cast in the dis­
trict in 1884 than in 1882, but the Democrats received
only 2,000 of them.
was elected.
As a result the Republican candidate
In the thirteenth district, composed of
St. Louis Republican, June 10, July 12, 16, and 23,
139counties in the southwest section, the Republican candi­
date won in spite of a failure to fuse with the Greenback45
Of all the parties the future looked darkest for the
They had gambled on a fusion and lost.
Very likely some of the increase in the Democratic vote
had been Greenbackers who opposed fusion in the Kansas
Gity convention and voted with their former party in No­
With the farmer or Confederate faction of the
Democrats now controlling the legislative and executive
departments in the state government, the Republicans,
would be forced to take a stand that would call attention
to the inconsistencies between Greenback and Republican
Since the Democrats would have control of the
national government, they probably would cease to advocate
a radical state rights policy which the Greenbackers op­
Under the circumstances it would be hard for the
Greenbackers to win back those who had gone to the Demo*
The Republicans in Missouri came out of the election
with a united party.
The straight Republican ticket of
officers, nominated in protest of the fusion, attracted
Appleton’s Annual Cyclopedia, 1882, 567; 1884, 532;
OrriclafT^irectory of Missouri for 1885, 2^, 26.
The third party cast 51,123 votes in 1878, 36,338 in
1880, 32,664 in 1882, and only 12,430 in 1886.
140only 103 votes, and the patronage would cause no factional
disturbances before the next presidential election.47
nex$ four years might prove lean years for them but it
would be four years to forget past differences and plan
for the next election when there would be some national
appointments at stake.
The Democrats could find cause to worry after examin­
ing the outcome of the balloting for governor and lieu­
The accompanying table shows that Marma­
duke received about 14,000 fewer votes than Morehouse.
This was too many irregular voters to lose without making
some effort to regain their confidence.
Since Ford re­
ceived about 4,000 more votes than Starkloff, Brooks 5,000
more than Eshbaugh, and the total vote for lieutenantgovernor was 4,000 greater than that for governor, it
seemed probable that some of the irregular Democratic vot­
ers had voted for the Republican and Prohibitionist candi­
dates for governor and some refused to vote for a guberna­
torial candidate.
Those who voted for Ford probably were former Union
Democrats or Whigs who opposed the policy of regulating
the railroads or felt that an ex-Confederate should not be
elected governor.
The Democrats who voted for Brooks
The convention was held at Macon
Guitar was placed at the head of
candidates for state offices and
St. Louis Republican, October 8,
in October. Odin
a full ticket of
electoral college.
Election of 1884
probably did so either as a result of the trading policy
of the Prohibitionists or because they agreed with the
Prohibitionists* policies.
This complicated the problem,
for the Democratic leaders who wanted to promote party
The Confederate faction which was now in power
was opposed to such sumptuary legislation as the Prohibi­
tionists demanded and were committed to the proposition of
regulating freight rates.
The solution depended upon the
actions of the General Assembly which was to meet in
January, 1885.
A Republican newspaper in analyzing the legislative
body which met in January, 1885, sarcastically said there
were twenty-seven ex-Confederates, twenty-eight ex-Unionists, forty-nine farmers, thirty-two laywers, six doctors,
Official Directory of Missouri for 1885, 18. The
Prohibitionists 'had only two candidates for state
142six newspapermen, five ministers, and the remainder were
storekeepers, clerks, and statesmen.
in an exceptional­
ly long message to them Governor Crittenden used his last
opportunity to lecture on the futility and dangers of un­
reasonable legislative restrictions on railroads.
the Board of Railroad Commissioners, who asked for the
authority to proceed against the railroad companies for
discrimination against a community or an individual, he
advised a liberal policy.
Crittenden*s advice, however,
had no effeot on the group, whom the Glob e -Demo orat now
called farmers.
They began almost immediately to make
plans for the passage of a law based on the suggestions
of the Railroad Commissioners.
The intentions were probably good but the railroad
lobby circumvented the passage of a bill to regulate
freight rates.
John 0*Day, representative of the St.
Louis and San Francisco, A. C. Dawes of the Hannibal and
St. Joseph, Wells Blodgett of the Wabash and ex-Lieutenant-governor H. C. Brockmeyer, who had become famous as a
railroad lobbyist, were in Jefferson City to guard the
interests of the railroads.
Each house succeeded in
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, January 8, 1885. In this
gibe w M n h ninaaed the Republicans as the statesmen,
the terms ex-Confederate and ex-Unionist have a
broader significance than service during the Civil
War. The ex-Confederates in an overwhelming number
of cases would support propositions to regulate the
Shoemaker, Messages and Proc 1 amations, Y1 * 38~;:383>
St. Louis Globe-Democrat'. January 15 and 18, 1885.
passing a bill about the middle of March, but the House
bill was never sent to the Senate and the Senate bill was
never brought to a vote in the House.
The work of the
lobby had been effective in blocking this bill, one de­
manded by Kansas City and St. Louis that would have forced
one railroad to lease another its switches in cities of
40,000 or more, one prohibiting pooling of profits, and
another that would make the employer responsible to an
employee for accidents caused by the negligence of a fel52
low, but a few bills of lesser consequence were enacted.
Railroads were required to fence their right of ways, fur­
nish a caboose for shippers of livestock, supply double
deck stock cars to those who might demand them, and were
made liable for stock killed on their tracks.
As in 1883,
fines were attached as penalties for some of these, and
St. Louis Globe-Demo erat, February 9, 1885; Journal
of the House of Representatives of the Missouri Gen­
eral As's'epibly , 1565-1586 {Jefferson “(jiTty, 1355),
1547, 1252; Journal o f t he Senate, 1885-1886 (Jeffer­
son City, 1885), 657.
On the day that the switch lease bill was defeated
and two days before the House Committee reported the
bill to regulate rates, Ducan McVicar Stuart, Repub­
lican Representative from Stone County, offered the
following resolution which was debated and finally
rejected. "Resolved: That Brockmeyer, Dawes, 0*Day
and all their confreres in the work of strengthening
the grasp of the railroad monopolies on the people
of Missouri be discharged from all further labor in
that direction, and that they be granted leave of
absence for the remainder of the session." St. Louis
• Globe-Democrat, March 21 and 22, 1885; Jefferson City
Daily Tribune, March 21, 1885.
-144in each case reasonable attorney’s fees were added to the
amount of damages which the plaintiff might collect in
civil action.
This General Assembly seemed to be conscious of the
need for some legislation regulating employer-employee
The railroad strike in 1883, a shopmen’s
strike while the legislature was in session, as well as
the demand for mechanics two years before for a law pre­
scribing the manner of measuring masonry, plaster, and
brickwork for the calculating of wages, emphasized that
such legislation was necessary.
A law was passed which
designated the method of calculating the wages of both
mechanics and miners.
.Employers were required to furnish
female employees with chairs or stools and railroads and
other corporations were forbidden to reduce wages without
thirty days’ notice or to pay wages with anything other
than coin or negotiable tokens.
The failure to secure an act to specify freight rates
and force one railroad to lease its terminal facilities
to another at reasonable rates, aroused a resentment
which was increased by the railroad strike in 1886.
Laws of Missouri, 1885, 55rd General Assembly (Jef­
ferson City, 1885)V "&S-93.
Ibid., 82, 83, 150, 198-202, 207-208; St. Louis
Gl'obe-Democrat, February 2, 1883; March 14 and 16,
1885; Appleton’s Annual Cyclopedia, 1885, 604.
over two weeks no freight was moved in or out of St. Louis,
cars of vegetables rotted on the tracks and a food short­
age threatened to bring suffering to the people.
City suffered almost as badly.
Governor Marmaduke and
the Board of Railroad Commissioners worked diligently and
successfully to avoid serious rioting or disturbance and
a threat was made that the state would
take charge of the
roads and operate them if a settlement could not be
reached shortly.
The farmers and the commercial element in the cities
again aligned themselves against the railroads and formed
a determined majority in the Democratic convention which
met in August, 1886.
The keynote was sounded by Alexander
M. Dockery in a demand for
reduced taxes and railroadreg­
Richard P. Bland and Senator
call for action.
Vest amplified his
Bland asserted that the railroads had
unmercifully taxed the public $35,000,000 in the last
thirteen years, Senator Vest advocated a local option bill
in lieu of submitting a prohibition amendment to the peo­
ple, and each expounded the benefits that would derive
The Official History of the Great Strike of 1886 on
the Southwestern Railway^ystem, compiled dy~the Bureau of Labor Statistics and inspection of Missouri
(Jefferson City, 1886), bound with the Eighth Annual
Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Inspec­
tion for the State oflflissouri,' for the^Year ending
Tjecemher 3T7 T5g6~(7effersori T i t y , l3S7)7T5; Allan
Kevins. Grover Cleveland (New York, 1933), 346.
-146from the free coinage of silver.
In each case the nomi­
nation of officers turned on whether they favored the de­
mands of the reformers.
If John O'Day favored a candidate
that seemed to he enough to defeat him.
Of the three can­
didates for supreme judge one was said to have furnished
passes to 100 delegates, one was charged with being a
railroad man, and the other, Theodore Brace, was nominated
John Breathit and William E. Coleman were nominated for
failroad commissioner and superintendent of instruction,
respectively, in spite of the opposition of Ed Butler and
the old machine.
The platform formulated by this convention continued
the arguments of the campaign of 1884 about the prosperity
of Missouri, by pointing out that 3 l/2 per cent state
bonds commanded a 3 per cent premium on the market.
stated in unqualified and clear terms the adherence of
the Missouri Democracy to the state rights doctrine, de­
clared in favor of free and unlimited coinage of both
gold and silver, demanded that surplus money in the nation­
al treasury should be used to pay outstanding bonds, and
suggested that lands held by railroads should be restored
to public ownership.
Along with a few other generalities
St. Louis Republican, August 19, 1886; St. Louis
Weekly Globe-Democrat, August 26, 1886.
St. Louis Republican, August IS and 20, 1886; St.
Louis WeeklyGlobe-Democrat, August 26, 1886.
-147and compliments, the platform
contained a definite state­
ment of the party*s attitude toward railroads:
It is the deliberate judgment of the Democratic
party of Missouri that in their very nature, as
well as by the nature of our State Constitution,
the railroads of this State are public highways,
many of which were built by public taxation; that
both the rights and duty of the State to regulate
and control these highways is clear and can never
be abrogated; that the wise provisions in our
Constitution as to discrimination in freight and
passenger rates by railroads; against competing
lines being under one management; against the giv­
ing of passes or reduced rates to public officers;
against such corporations engaging in other busi­
ness and their officers furnishing supplies to
such railroads, together with the requirements of
our Constitution, should be supplemented by strin­
gent laws carrying them into effect, and we de­
mand of the next General Assembly the passage of
all such necessary laws, with such penalties as
will insure their observance. We further declare
that rates should be adjusted on freights as to
give the railroads a fair and just remuneration
for the service performed and the money actually
invested, exclusive of watered and fictitious
stock; that our board of Railroad Commissioners
should reduce all present rates to such standards,
and if the powers of the board are inadequate to
that end that such further authority be given it;
that we demand that our present laws be so amend­
ed as to give the board power to enforce such rates
when fixed, and the shipper also a clear remedy for
all wrongs. We further favor necessary legislation
for the speedy and equitable settlement of all the
disputes or differences that may arise between
railroad companies and their employees.
The Republicans and the third party men, who now
called themselves Nationals, also made demands in their
platforms for more effective supervision of railroad cor­
Unlike the Democrats who did not mention it,
Official Directory of Missouri for 1887-1888 (Jeffer­
son City, 1888), 160-161.
148the Republicans expressed the opinion that a prohibition
amendment should be submitted to the voters if a large
enough number petitioned for it, and the Nationals demand­
ed submission without qualification.
The Nationals de­
manded the free coinage of both gold and silver, "green­
back dollars," and the payment of bonds with money accumu­
lating in the treasury.
They went a step farther than the
Democrats by denouncing the national banks and the taxa59
tion of mortgaged property for its full value.
The Republicans again made their platform a master­
piece of sarcasam, pessimism, and
denounced the Democratic national administration and found
"if possible, still less cause for congratulation" in the
administration of state government.
They continued their
attempt to split the Democratic party on the Union-Con­
federate issue by charging that a reading of the list of
state officers in Missouri sounded "like calling the roll
of the Confederate army."
They could see no hope for
railroad regulation while the vice-president and general
manager of a great railroad,
(John 0 'Day) was chairman of
the state executive committee and a number of the commit60
teemen were railroad attorneys.
Official Directory of Missouri for 1887-1888 (Jeffer­
son City, 1888), 16X^163.
-149The Silkstockings controlled the convention and re­
fused to seat the Hoodlum delegation from St. Louis.
nominated a full ticket of candidates for state offices
and made no reference about a fusion.
The Nationals left
the way open for another joint effort in their convention,
but there was no fusion for state offices in 1886 like
that in 1884.
The opposition to this practice extended
to the congressional districts because they joined forces
only in the southeast Missouri district where they had no
chance to win.
The decay of the third party was evident
because it failed to have a candidate in three districts
and appeared in the others as Greenback, Union Labor, or
In the election which followed the Democrats elected
all their candidates for state offices, twelve congress­
men, eighty-five state representatives and enough state
senators to give them a majority of fourteen in the Sen­
With a working majority in both houses and the re­
sults of a poll of the legislative candidates by the Mer­
chants and Manufacturers in St. Louis showing that a large
portion of them would be governed by the party caucus, the
task of the railroad lobby appeared hopeless.
was this so because both Republicans and third party men
St. Louis Republican, June 3, September 1 and 2,
1886; Official Manual of Missouri for 1887-1888,
32-33. 66-96.'
-150had demanded railroad regulation and control in their
When this General Assembly met Governor Marmaduke
spent as much time expounding Article XII of the Constitu­
tion and insisting that it should be supported by adequate
legislation as Crittenden had spent in 1885 on the other
side of the question.
The Confederates in the House won
the first round of what proved to be a hard struggle by
electing their candidate for Speaker.
He immediately ap­
pointed a committee on Internal Improvements and Transpor­
tation that was considered "lobby-proof.”
The St. Louis
Merchants and Manufacturers organization had prepared
bills to serve as a basis for the legislators and in just
a few days a bill had been introduced in each house.
order to expedite the passage of one of the bills, the
committees to which they were referred
joint meetings and hearings.
decided to hold
They hoped that this cooper­
ative work would produce a bill which each house could
pass without difficulty.
The proposed bill would have authorized the Railroad
Commissioners to fix a schedule of maximum rates.
would also have provided them with adequate means to
Official Directory of Missouri for 1887-1888, 193215: Annieton*s Annual Cyclopedia',' 1886, 5*76; St.
Lo uis Repub1 1can,' January 4 and 5, March 14, 1887.
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 31-32;
St. Louis Republican, February 15, 1887.
151investigate charges of non-compliance with the law and
would have empowered them to initiate legal proceedings
against the railroads through the Attorney-General or
some county prosecuting attorney.
The railroads would
have "been forced to cease pooling profits, charging more
for a short than a long haul, and discriminating against
communities and individuals.
The old practice of charging
two local rates, to avoid the earlier laws fixing rates
on a pound-distance basis, would have been stopped by the
inclusion of a clause requiring rates to be calculated on
the basis of continuous carriage to the place of destina­
Failure to obey any of these would have been a
criminal and not a civil offense, and hence the duty of
the state to enforce.
The St. Louis Republican said there were just two
sides at Jefferson City, one for the constitution and one
for the railroads, and hoped that the enforcement of the
constitution would not be "put on Jay Gould's sidetrack."
A few weeks later it might have added that there was a
group in Jefferson City who were acting as Jay Gould's
The Secretary of State, M. K. McGrath^ chair­
man of the state central committee, George H. Shields, the
chairman and a member of the executive committee of the
central committee, John O'Day and William H. Phelps, were
St. Louis Republican, February 15, 1887.
Ibid.. January 4. 1 8 8 7 . ______________
-152the contributions of the Democratic party to those who
were lobbying for the railroads.
Besides these and the
others who lobbied in 1885, two new ones were introduced,
one from Missouri and one imported from Iowa.
They were
said to be working under 0*Day*s orders to "beat the rail66
road legislation at any cost."
The lobby was said to have used $80,500 to corrupt
the legislators.
One senator reported that he had been
offered $3,000 to vote as the lobby directed, and one
newspaper reported, "While honest people sleep one crowd
of lobbyists is getting one group tipsy while another is
setting up jackpots for those who like poker."
those lawyer legislators who wanted or had railroad cli­
ents, the lobby held and used the promise of business or
the threats of losing it.
In order to gain the support of
the legislators of southeast Missouri, where there were
only a few railroads, paper schemes were developed which
would have put a railroad in every county in the section,
provided the legislature did not prove too unfriendly to
railroads in general.
If the view of both Republican
and Democratic newspapers is accepted, few useable means
of influencing the legislature were neglected.
St. Louis Republican, January 3, 5, and 27,Februa­
ry 3 , 5 , and 18, 1887.
Ibid., February 4, 1887.
68. Ibid., January 5. February 3, 5, 24, and 28, March 4,
______^ 7 ™ 13 r June 17. 168 Z.------- --- ------------------
-153Using those members of the General Assembly whom they
could influence and those who opposed it for other reasonsj
the lobbyists sought to block the bill by various means.
Two hundred bills, many introduced to slow the action of
the legislature, were offered for consideration during the
One scheme of the lobbyists was to introduce
regulation bills which were so radical that the reformers
would not accept them.
Attempts were made to combine the
strength of those who were personally interested in some
other proposition.
Some wanted support for a bill to re­
move the capitol to Sedalia, and the lobby traded support
with them.
Senator Lyman Parcher, Republican senator from
the first district, was sponsoring a bill to establish a
normal school at Maryville.
He had supported the railroad
bill in its early stages but suddenly veered.
When his
bill came before the Senate, the railroad senators voted
for it.
The Drys wanted a resolution to submit a prohibi­
tion amendment; they were willing to trade in spite of the
fact that John 0 ?Day had tried to secure the support of
the Wets in St. Louis to defeat the Confederates’ candi­
date for Speaker of the House.
The lobbyists were said
to be "beer lovers in beer loving districts, prohibition69
ists in prohibition districts, and Gould men everywhere."
St. Louis Republican, January 13 and 28, February 3,
24, and 28, March 1, 5, and 15, 1887.
-154In order to combat the pork-barrel strategy of the
lobby, the friends of the railroad bill managed to bring
the capitol removal scheme to a vote before their bill
came before the legislature.
As soon as the lobby sena­
tors began to vote for Parcher’s bill, the reformers
turned as a group and defeated it to serve as a warning to
others who might be tempted.
To block and ruin the trade
with the Prohibitionists they passed a local option bill
with the hope that it would be ’’submission enough for the
submissionists, prohibition enough for the Prohibition70
ists, and democratic enough for the Democrats.’’
To whip
the wavering back into line, the reformers closely watched
those members who were associating with the lobbyists and
sent reports to newspapers in their districts.
In this
way the weekly newspapers were able to exert still great, , .
er pressure with their editorials and criticism.
The Republicans were in a position to laugh at the
The leading officers in the Democratic state
organization and some of the state officials were working
for the railroads, and many Democratic legislators, even
those who had promised to do so, refused to be bound by
St. Louis Republican, January 4, 13, and 21, Febru­
ary 3 and 4, March 15, 1887.
Ibid.. February 8 , 1887. On March 12, the St. Louis
Republican printed an extended list of excerpts from
newspapers over the state which were criticizing
their senators and representatives.
-155the caucus*
The Democratic reformers were angry but
could do nothing about it.
The Republicans had been
elected on a platform that should have caused them to sup­
port the same law which the Confederates were trying to
pass, but many of them followed the boldly stated advice
of Senator Steele Ryors of Osage County who counseled the
Republicans to support the railroads so that the Democrats
would be subjected to damaging criticism.
When the roll
was called on the bill in the Senate six of the nine Re­
publicans voted against it and a test vote in the House
found twenty-four of their fifty representatives with the
An arrangement having been made some time before that
the General Assembly would adjourn at noon on March 21,
the Confederates began to despair as the time for passing
the bill grew shorter.
A filibuster in the House of Repre­
sentatives as the session was drawing to a close convinced
them that they would not be able to bring it to a vote.
At 10:30 o ’clock on the last day a committee was sent to
notify Governor Marmaduke that the General Assembly was
about to adjourn without passing the regulation bill.
Within fifteen minutes a message was presented to each
house from the Governor saying that he would call a spe­
cial session if the General Assembly failed to act, but 12:00
St. Louis Republican, January 8 and 27, February 3
and 26, Marcn 1, 8 ," and 14, 1887.
o ’clock and adjournment came without the passage of the
Although the legislature had failed in its attempt
to enact a law which would have established maximum
freight and passenger rates, it passed a number of bills
which were designed to eliminate some of the specific
grievances against the railroads.
Mergers, interlocking
directorates, and the sale of goods to a railroad by one
of its officers was forbidden.
A maximum number of pounds
per car for which the railroad could charge, and the spec­
ifications of conveniences to be built into stock cars
were written into the law.
The social legislation begun in 1883 continued to re­
ceive some attention in 1885.
Railroads were forbidden to
clean stock cars near a running stream, and cities of the
first and second class were enabled to make ordinances
providing for the inspection of animals intended for human
The Bureau of Labor Statistics was given the
added duty of inspecting mines, and children under twelve
and women were forbidden to work in them.
The moralists
were given a local option law and the buying public
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 85-86;
St. Louis Republican, karoh 18 and 2&, 1887.
Laws of Missouri, 1887, 34th General Assembly, Regu­
lar Sesslon:(defferson City, 1867), 101-108.
protected from the sale of butter substitutes.
After the General Assembly adjourned without passing
the bill which had caused so much excitement during the
winter, there were a number of mass meetings and much
newspaper criticism of those senators and representatives
who had voted against it*
In Pike County a mass meeting
demanded that Senator David A. Ball either vote for the
bill at the special session or resign.
In every county
in Steele Ryor's district mass meetings ordered represen­
tatives to vote with the reformers.
The farmers of both
parties were angry because no law had been enacted.
the force of public opinion supporting it and all side
issues eliminated by the call for the special session,
the passage of a bill should have been easy, but such was
not the case.
Governor Marmaduke reminded the General Assembly in
his message that they had accepted election on a platform
demanding a law for the regulation of freight rates and
since there was no change in the wishes of the people, he
had called them together to enaot such a law.
The lobby
again worked hard to defeat an effective bill but the re­
formers were determined and refused to be hurried.
Laws of Missouri, 1887, 34th General Assembly, Regu­
larSession, 51-52, 1^4, 1^9-162,
St. Louis Republic, March 24, May 13, 1887.
having been in session for nearly a month, and after the
reformers had threatened to adjourn and take the proposi­
tion to the people, the lines of the opposition began to
The legislators from the southeast section began
to Join the Confederates, and Senator Parcher again veered
and worked with the Republicans to gain their support.
A split appeared in the ranks of tbe lobbyists.
0»Day as attorney for the St. Louis and San Francisco had
secretly favored a terminal bill in the regular session,
since his company was forced to hire terminal facilities
in St. Louis from Jay Gould.
The other railroad repre­
sentatives turned against him during the special session
and thus weakened their own ability to apply pressure.
Eventually the lobby realized that a bill was sure to
They then changed their strategy and tried to save
as much as they could by making what appeared to be an
honest effort to help the committee report a bill that
would be satisfactory to everyone.
Working under ideal
conditions a bill was passed on July 1, after almost two
months of wrangling.
The law forbade undue or unreasonable discrimination
and made the violation of rulings of the Railroad
Shoemaker. Messages and Proclamations, VII, 342-344;
St. Louis Republica’nTlflay 28> June §7 10* 15, and 30,
July 2, 1887.
St. Louis Republican, February 12, June 7, 1887.
Ibid., June 8, 1887.________________________________
-159Commission prima facie evidence of unreasonableness.
Railroad Commissioners were empowered to make a schedule
of reasonable maximum tates, and to proceed against the
railroads in the name of the state for charging more for
a short haul than a long haul, pooling profits, failing to
post schedules of rates, or for violation of any part of
the law.
The Commissioners were enabled to subpoena wit­
nesses and examine them under oath in making their inves­
tigations, and to direct the Attorney-General or a county
prosecutor to proceed against a railroad for any infrac­
To eliminate the possibility that the Railroad Com­
missioners might fail in their duty, they were made liable
to mandamus proceedings instituted by any citizen to force
them to act.
Although Governor Morehouse reported to the next
legislature that the law had been cheerfully complied .
with in most cases, experience had taught that there were
loopholes in the law.
The freight of friendly shippers
could be underweighed or under classified.
clerks, to whom the railroads paid commissions for secur­
ing freight, could divide with the shipper.
The law made
it illegal to give passes to public officers but did not
forbid passes for those who went to political conventions
to shape the policies of the parties.
It was such
Laws of Missouri, 1887, 54th General Assembly, Spe­
cial Session (Jefferson cTty, 1887), 12-28.
-160failures in the state laws and in the Interstate Commerce
law which caused the Farmers* Alliance to demand govern­
ment ownership in 1889 and kept the railroads
sue in Missouri politics in 1888.
a live is-
Although the passage of the railroad bill had marked
a triumph of the Confederate, farmer, or liberal faction
in the party, there were many disturbing factors as the
Democrats looked forward to 1888.
The passage of the bill
and the opposition of one faction toward it might drive
some of the Whig and Union Democrat element to the Repub­
The railroad attorneys on the state central com­
mittee were a disturbing factor after their lobbying ac­
Since Cleveland had shown his unfriendliness
toward free silver, which had been ari accepted demand in
Democratic platforms in Missouri for ten years, there was
the likelihood of trouble arising because of divided na­
tional councils.
A keen observer might have seen the
signs of the rise of a new leadership for the party in the
state but the Democrats were apparently unconscious of
this development in 1887.
St. Louis Republican, June 12, August 16 and 18,
1887; W. Scout Morgan, History of the Wheel and Al­
liance and the Impending RevoTution Tst. Louis,
l M I f , IS^jTTex M. Arnett, The Populist Movement in
Georgia.(New York, 1903), 99; St. Louis "Republic,
January 3, 1889. Governor Marmaduke died in Decem­
ber, 1887.
Since the General Assexribly had succeeded in passing
the long awaited railroad legislation in 1867, that ques­
tion should not have troubled the Democratic party in
1886, but the feeling aroused by opposition to the bill
was not easily forgotten.
The Globe-Democrat said that
the choice of temporary chairman for the Democratic state
nominating convention in 1886 turned on "railroad or antirailroad" and the "Grangers won."
Some counties instruct­
ed their delegations to oust O'Day and Shields from the
state central oommittee because of their activities as
lobbyists the winter before.
One delegate in the state
convention declared that his candidate, who had contribut­
ed so much in the last legislature toward
the "infernal question" which had "rent the party asunder
for the last thirteen or fourteen years," deserved the
support of the convention.^
He seemed to forget that he
might be mwving a plea on the same old question.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 24, 1888; St. Louis
Republican, March 18',’ 1%88; St. Louis Republic,
August l4, 1888.
-162The factional struggles in the Democratic party in
1888 were probably affected as much by the animosities
aroused by the struggle over the railroad bill as by the
It is impossible to separate the two because the
factional split was along almost identical lines.
though the Missouri Democrats had stated their opposition
to a protective tariff as early as 1676, it had caused no
apparent trouble in the party until the action of William
H. Phelps at the national convention in 1884 aroused the
resentment of the Confederates.
The Missouri delegation
in Congress supported the Morrison bill in 1884, and the
Mills bill in 1888, although John J. 0*Neil of St. Louis
supported the Morrison bill with a poor grace*
The anti-
Union faction, led by the Young Democrats Club in St.
Louis, had been supporting the doctrine of a tariff for
revenue only since 1881, but the tariff formed a very
minor part in the campaign literature and speeches before
Cleveland definitely made it a Democratic issue in his
message in December, 1887*
The Young Democrats* Club, whioh had led the reform
faction to victory in the St. Louis city election in 1885,
was Indicative of the transformation in leadership which
time was sure to bring in the Democratic party.
The proc­
ess was hurried by the elimination of older conservative
leaders during the last years of the struggle to regulate
St. Louis Republican. April 2, 1884*
railroads, but the number of young men who had begun to
appear in Democratic conventions was noticed in 1684.
had become apparent after that time that they would soon
be in the majority.
They had developed strength by 1888
and were so willing to coflperate to exert their influence
that Champ Clark warned them in the state convention "not
to over-do the kid business," and TJ. S. Hall mentioned
the talk "among the sophomores here about the Young Demo-
The newspapers had noticed the change even be­
fore the conventions, and the name "Young Democrats" becane
the common one for those who were able to control the par­
ty in 1888,
With all their strength, however, they were unable to
keep John 0*Day from being elected delegate at large to the
national convention.
The other delegates at large were
Young Democrats, however, and enough were selected by the
district delegations to defeat a high tariff advocate,
Uorrison Munford, editor of the Kansas City Times, for na­
tional chairman by a vote of SI to 10.
In spite of this
and the fact that the convention had instructed the dele­
gation to support Cleveland on the tariff issue, O'Day was
elected as Missouri*s representative on the resolutions
committee of the national convention.
He was given
St. Louis Republican, January 14, 1888; St. Louis Re­
public. June 26, 1^388; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, j'eFruary ll, 1885; August 24 and 25, lSSS.
instructions to support a tariff for revenue only, but
like Phelps in 1884 he voted for a protectionist, A. P.
Gorman, for chairman rather than Henry Watterson.
grined by what they considered a breach of faith and prob­
ably a little anxious about the criticism which was due
them, the Missouri delegates met to condemn O'Day.
was some talk of asking him to resign; but, since Watter4
son had been elected, no aotlon was taken.
The Young Democrats had other opportunities to prac­
tice the game of politics in 1888.
The state central oom-
mlttee had ordered two other state conventions besides the
one at Sedalia in May where John O'Day was elected dele­
gate at large.
The candidates for judges of the supreme
court and the oourts of appeals were to be nominated in
Springfield on August 15 and the other state officers at
Jefferson City on August 2£.
The counties were asked to
delay the selection of delegates to these last two con­
ventions until August 5.
Since the state central commit­
tee had never tried to dictate the time for holding county
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, May 18, 1888; St. Louis Bepublic. June 6 and 7, 1688. The story was told tbat
6 fbay, although he had lost the privilege of dispens­
ing Missouri Paclfio passes, was able to control the
delegates to the state convention from southeast Mis­
souri by Issuing them passes to Sedalia but withhold­
ing the return passes until the convention adjourned.
The story was told by the Republic, which was a bit­
ter enemy of O'Day, but his election in the face of
widespread opposition because of his activity as lob­
byist in 1887 seems to lend some credence to the
story. St. Louis Republican, May 19, 1888.
conventions, many saw some sinister motive in postponing
them to such a late date*
Some thought it was for the
purpose of allowing the congressmen to be at home to com­
plicate the proceedings with their usual patronage trades
for their own support.
Others thought it was to allow
three or four strong candidates to develop for governor so
that the convention could nominate a dark horse.5
Very little interest was exhibited in the selection
of judges for the various courts either during the pre­
liminary campaign or at Springfield, but the candidates
for state offioe began to campaign for delegates early in
the year and continued until August.
As usual the candi­
dates for governor excited the most attention.
The Young
Democrats, through one of their spokesmen, announced in
February that the candidate must have a good record on
the temperance question, not be too old, and be ready to
promote the material prosperity of both mining and agri­
This was a rather accurate description of David
R. Francis who was already in the field.
No Union man had
definitely announced his intention to enter the contest
for the gubernatorial nomination before January.
In order
to remove the obstacle which the rumors of Supreme Judge
Elijah H. Norton’s intention placed in the way of other
candidates, ex-Governor Crittenden wrote him a letter ask­
ing him either to announce his candidacy or to stop the
St. Louis Republican. March 18 and 19, 1888.
Norton then declared that he would not ask for
the nomination and Governor Albert P. Morehouse, a Union
man, immediately announced his intention to enter the
Two other candidates appeared, Congressman John M.
Glover of St. Louis who was a Union man with a slight lib­
eral tendency, and John F. Claiborne of southwest Missouri
who was an ex-Confederate soldier.
Francis, one of the Young Democrats of St. Louis who
had been active in the attacks on Crittenden in 1883, was
elected president of the Merchant's Exchange in St. Louis
in 1884.
In the same year he was elected delegate at
large to the Democratic national convention and was made a
member of the committee to notify Cleveland of the nomina­
At the head of a reform ticket he had defeated the
old machine in the city election in April, 1885, and had
made a reputation as an enemy of the saloons, gambling,
and other vices as well as an honest efficient executive.
His ability to meet and win people led an older man who
saw him in action at the state convention to say, "Can it
be possible that Francis has only been in politics four
6. St. Louis Republican, January 20, February 1, 3, and
4, March l F T A p r i r T 4 , May 7, 1888. A governor may
not succeed himself according to the constitution of
1875,but Morehouse claimed that he was not disquali­
fied because he was only completing Marmaduke's term.
Why, he is now the most accomplished politician
I know of,"
The cooperation of his faction in St. Louis
in the passage of the railroad acts of 1887 made him ac­
ceptable to the farmers, and his youth attracted the Young
Democrats all over the state.
Realizing that being a
grain broker might make the farmers hesitate to give him
undivided support, he spent much of his speaking time to
oonvinoe them that his business was necessary and honor­
He early began to emphasize that the high tariff
was the cause of the farmers* trouble and avoided any more
direct statement of his position on the silver issue than
to declare that he was an admirer of Senator Vest*
Governor Morehouse, a resident of the northwest part
of the state, was popular in that section.
In his cam­
paign speeches he maintained that he favored the farming
and laboring classes and advocated legislation that would
promote their interests*
Although he said that all cor­
porations should be held strictly to their charters, he
avoided any discussion of the railroad legislation of
St. Louis Republic, August 22, 1888. The Republic, an
ardent supporter of Francis, did not name the author of
the expression. The language used leads to the con­
clusion that the reader was supposed to infer that the
opinion was that of some farm leader who was familiar
with conventions and politicians*
St. Louis Republican, May 6, 1888; May 2, 1888, quot­
ing the Columbia deraid; St. Louis Republic, Aguust 22,
It was also necessary for him to shun the tariff
issue because of the group from whom his most ardent sup­
port came, hut he openly supported Cleveland's candidacy.
He also made a hid for support on the waning state rights
doctrine hy declaring his opposition to the Blair eduoa9
tional hill then pending before Congress,
In the eampalgn for delegates, which had been excep­
tionally active, neither Glover nor Claiborne developed
any strength.
The candidates spoke in all sections of ths
state and sometimes spoke from the same platfoxm,
house tried to win the farm vote by showing that Francis
had been in a business detrimental to farm interests.
Other attempts were made to break the city-farmer coali­
tion which had been successful in 1884, but it could not
be done.
After the delegates had been selected in the
counties, it became evident that Francis had a majority
of the delegates without counting those from St. Louis,
Claiborne immediately withdrew from the race in Francis's
favor and Glover withdrew before a vote was taken in the
convention. 10
St, Louis Republican, February 6, 1888. This bill
would have granted 7ederal aid to education but would
hbve carried with it a degree of federal control,
St. Louis Republican. May 5, 6, 20, and 21, 1888;
St, Louis Republic. August 12, 13, 14, and 23, 1888.
Francis had 285 1/2 instructed delegates out of 466
and test votes in the convention proved that the Young
Democrats had secured over fifty of the ninety-seven un­
instructed delegates.
On the roll call for a gubernato­
rial nominee, FTancis had a majority before St. Louis was
reached and had enough votes to win without those from
St. Louis, Kansas City, and St. Joseph.
The attempts to
raise the issue of country versus city had failed com­
Francis had enough votes from the rural counties
to win the nomination.1^
The Young Democrats used their strength in the con­
vention to chastise those who had been "against the con­
stitution" in 1887*
Stephen H* Claycomb of Jasper Comity
was nominated for lieutenant-governor by a wide majority
after his record in the struggle with the railroad lobby
had been recalled by one of his supporters.
Michael K*
McGrath, Seoretary of State since 1874, whose office had
been the headquarters of the lobby in 1887 and who was
said to be supported by every corporation in the state,
was defeated by Alexander A. Leseur of Lafayette County
who had worked with the reformers.
Only five of the old
state central committeemen were re-elected.
All of those
except one, William H. Phelps, had supported the majority
in the General Assembly in 1887.
The Young Democrats
St. Louis Republic. August 11 and 23, 1888.
-170definitely seized control of the party machinery by plac­
ing on it men who were supporters of Francis and who elect­
ed C. C. Maffitt, his close political friend, for their
Only one of the candidates for the five highest of­
fices had been old enough to take part in the civil War,
and twenty young men were placed on the state and electo­
ral tickets.
With Francis, Claycomb, and Leseur on the
state ticket were 2d Noland for state treasurer, James M.
Seibert for state auditor, Timothy J. Hennessey for rail­
road commissioner, Robert M. McCulloch for register of
lands, and John M. Wood for attorney-general.
This ticket
of candidates discloses that the young Democrats had not
neglected to distribute the offices so as to make a wide
appeal to the voters.
Leseur, a Confederate, and MoCul-
loch, long affiliated with the conservatives, were from
Missouri river counties.
Francis from St. Louis and No­
land from Kansas City represented the business men.
Hennessey, a locomotive engineer from a central county,
was popular with railway workers, and Claycomb from the
southwest with miners.
Hennessey and Seibert, who was
from the southeast, were bids for the Irish and German
Wood being from the northeast part of the state,
St. Louis Republic. August 23, 24, and 25,,1888;
St. Louis Republican. February 16, 1888.
-171only one section, the northwest, did not have represents13
tioh on the ticket•
The candidates and members of the state central oommittee were largely young men and wisely selected, but
the platform was old*
The work of the national conven­
tion was confirmed, a little self-praise was included, and
the only economic plank was stated in such general terms
that a strong conservative could accept it*
Although the
silver plank had become almost a habit with the makers of
Democratic platforms, its omission in 1888 was the result
of an established rule to avoid as long as possible those
issues which might disturb party harmony*
The farmers in
this case made a concession to the leaders of the commer­
cial group in the cities who wanted to place the emphasis
on the tariff*
Nothing was said about railroads, and in
spite of the Prohibitionists' representatives at the con­
vention no mention was made of that aggravating question.
The Globe-Demoorat was right when it said that the plat14
form was interesting for "what it does not contain."
The membership in the Republican party had undergone
the same change as that experienced by the Democrats*
observer noticed that their convention was composed of
St. Louis Republic, August 24 and 25, 1888*
Official Manual of Missouri, 1889-1890 (Jefferson
gl-Kv. IflagT.' T zq 1T31: st. louls Globe^Democrat,
August 24, 1888.
172middle-age men with few "bald-heads" and few "fullbeards."
There was also a change in their ideas as to
how a campaign should be conducted.
The state oentral
committee had decided to complete all its business at one
Some opposed this plan because they thought
there would be an advantage gained by nominating candi­
dates after the Democrats,
Steele Ryors, whose partisan
feeling was so strong that he disobeyed the Republican
platform to embarrass the Democrats in 1887, spoke for the
practical politicians who wanted two conventions.
thought the Republicans should formulate their platform
so as to emphasize the weakest point in the oharacter of
the Democratic nominee for governor.
They oould attaok
Francis on an anti-option issue, Morehouse on the Marmaduke administration, Claiborne because he was an ex-Confederate, and Glover on "general principles,"
The dele­
gates, however, cheered Henry Lamm of Pettis County, the
temporary ohairman, who denounoed the old bloody shirt
campaigns, and voted to nominate their candidates and make
their platform then, May 15,
This transformation was either the result of the in­
fluence of the younger men or obedience to orders from the
national committee to make the tariff the important issue
of the campaign.
The platform adopted by the convention
St. Louis Republican, May 6, 15, 16, and 17, 1888.
-173was proof that there had been a transformation, whatever
the cause.
It was positive in its nature rather than
negative and was a statement of policy which the Republi­
cans proposed to follow, if elected, rather than a sample
of sarcastic criticism of the party which "disgraced it­
self" in the Rebellion,
The Republican convention might have been composed of
a majority of younger men, but they had the same old lead­
ers and factions,
Chauncey I. Filley and the Hoodlums wen
in the asoendanoy at the Sedalia convention.
They humili­
ated the Silkstockings who had ruthlessly ignored them in
A. C, Widdecombe, chairman of the state central
committee, was defeated for delegate at large by a Negro
porter in a Jefferson City hotel, and Filley defeated Van
Horn for national ohairman at the national convention a
few weeks later,
Filley refused the proffered candidacy
for governor, but E, F. Kimball was nominated by acclama­
tion when Filley suggested him.
The other places on the
ticket were filled with the usual dispatch, but no provi­
sions were made for following the Hoodlums* usual policy
of fusing with the third party, which had now changed its
name to Union Labor,
The Union Labor party convention, however, made fu­
sion possible by authorizing the central committee to fill
any vacancies on the party ticket.
Only 155 delegates,
St. Louis Republic. June 24 and 86, 1888,
of whom fifty-five were from St. Louis, appeared at the
convention in spite of the fact that D. N. Thomson, the
recognized leader had made an effort to secure a larger
representation from the rural counties.
As master of the
State Grange, he sent out letters urging each Grange to
have at least one member in every county delegation to
the state convention of every party.
A. R. Manring of
DeEalb County, a member of the executive committee of the
State Grange, was nominated for governor, W. H. Noer of
St. Louis for auditor, Boswell Fox of Washington County
for secretary of state, Warren Yentrees of Osage County
for attorney-general, and G. B. Debernardi of Pettis Coun­
ty for judge of the supreme court.
For attorney-general
they nominated L. L. Bridges who was also the Republican
oandidate for that office.
Although the Union Labor party platform included the
provision by means of which fusions had been made in the
past, the attitude of the farm element toward the Republi­
can party was changed in 1888.
Thompson feared a fusion
with the Republicans would drive those with Democratic
antecedents back to "their first love," and Joseph Whitak­
er, twice Republican representative from Hickory County
Proceedings of the Sixteenth Annual Session of the
MissouriStaTe Grange (Hannib al7 188$), lO; St. iLouis
Republican, May 5 and 6, 1888; St. Louis Republic ,
Ccnober 24, November 1, 1888. Manring was called a
Wheeler but the Wheel probably had not spread as far
north as DeKalb County by May, 1888.
and the Union Labor candidate for Congress in the sixth
district in 1888, said in his campaign speeches that the
Union Labor party was more like the Democratic than the
The labor members of the party either
failed to agree with this view or their leaders were cor­
rupted by Filley*s use of Republican campaign funds.
Filley approached Manring with the proposition that
Kimball be removed from the Republican ticket and Manring
put in his plaoe, if Manring would make a donation to the
Republican campaign fund.
Manring refused the offer.
Union Labor committee then called on Manring for a $2,000
contribution toward the expense of the campaign, but Man­
ring being a poor man could not pay so large a sum.
was then removed from the ticket by the committee and
W. H. Blake put in his place.
This caused an indignant
protest among the farm members, who thought that Blake
and the committeemen had made a bargain with Filley to
withdraw the Union Labor candidate in favor of Kimball a
few days before the election.
The committee then retract­
ed and Manring remained on the ticket, but the St. Louis
labor members voted for Kimball on election day.
St. Louis Republic, October 2, November 2, 1888.
St. Louis Republic. November 2, 1888, Whitaker in a
speech at Clinton; St. Louis Republic, October 31,
1888, and California Newspaper, November 1, 1888,
letters of a number of Union Labor leaders, among
them one by Manring. If the stories of Filley in
both the St. Louis Republic, a Democratic newspaper,
and the St. Louis Glope-Democrat, a Silkstocking Re­
publican newspaper, can be accepted, Filley delighted
in such deals.
Thompson in his letter asking the Grangers to send
delegates to the conventions of all the parties, had told
them that "our friends, the Wheel and the Alliance are
aiding in this movement*"
If he meant that they were
planning to use the Grange stratagem to secure candidates
on each party ticket who would favor farm interests, he
was right.
He was wrong though, if he thought the Wheel
and Alliance would support the Union Labor party in 1888.
The 58,000 and 18,000 voters respectively, who belonged
to these organizations which had sprung up since 1887
were, however, a source of worry to the Democrats.
Since they were strongest in the southeastern coun­
ties where the Democrats always secured large majorities,
there was cause to be worried.
They were not political
organizations acoordlng to their declarations of purposes,
but they were teaching a doctrine of independent voting.
Since the President of the Wheel was an independent candi­
date for state senator in a southeastern district and they
had nominated a ticket of candidates to defeat county
rings in some of the counties, no great confidence could
be plaoed in their contention that they were a non-partisan organization.
The Democratic newspapers began early to warn the
faithful not to be led astray by these organizations, and
to secure the farmers that the party which favored taking
St. Louis Republic, July 16, 1888.________________ _
the taxes from "ploughs and clothing and levying them on
whiskey" was the party for the farmer.
As the campaign
continued, both parties centered their attention on the
the southeast oounties.
The Republicans hoped to arouse
opposition to Francis because both the Wheel and the Al­
liance .were opposed to option dealing.
The Democrats were
forced to counter-attack end send all the candidates for
state offices into that section on a campaign tour.
pleaded for party solidarity, explained the true nature
of Francis's business, and emphasized the tariff issue on
which the Republicans had chosen to leave the farmers of
that section uninformed.
Some thought at the time that the Republican campaign
to cause Franois a loss of votes was gaining until the
"sordid" affair with the Union Labor committee was exposed.
Others thought Ben Deering, a Prohibitionist leader, saved
Francis many votes when he went into these counties to
plead for votes for Francis.
He had learned that the St.
Loials saloon keepers were planning to vote for Kimball to
21. St. Louis Globe-Democrat. September 9 and 13, 1888;
St. Louis Republican, karch 31, 1888; St. Louis Re­
public, August 36, 1888.
St. Louis Globe-Demoorat, September 4, 5, 6, 20, and
21, 1888; fl't. louls"Republic. August 29, October 5,
9, and 31, 1888.
get revenge for the trouble Franois had caused them as
The other sections of the state were not neglected
because of the concentration on the southeast counties*
Candidates and speakers of both parties worked hard all
over the state.
Campaign clubs were organized, literature
distributed, and the newspapers contributed generously to
the arguments of their respective parties*
In August a
Republican newspaper, which had taken the lead in waving
the bloody shirt, said that the candidates of both parties
were good men and the campaign would be waged on economic
and business issues.24
This proved to be true.
It was a campaign of educa­
tion and was kept on a plane far above those of the past
twenty years.
Although other campaign methods were not
neglected, by far the greatest emphasis was placed on ar­
guments about the tariff.
The Republicans apparently were
not anxious to claim their national plank demanding the
ooinage of both gold and silver and the Democrats did not
have such a plank In their platform.
The Democrats at­
tacked the Republicans on their activities during the
fight for the railroad legislation of the year before*
St. Louis Republic, October 31, November 9, 1888.
Although « MiHftcmrlpn, John A. Brooks, was candidate
for vioe-president on the iSational Prohibition ticket
and there was a complete state ticket, they received
very little attention in the election. The Democrats
and Republicans concentrated on the farm vote.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 24, 1888.
Kimball, who acted as an attorney for the railroads in
damage suits, was called the "oow-corner."
Carl Schurz*s
letter saying that a vote for Harrison is a vote for
Blaine was also given publicity by the Democrats.
The Re­
publicans struck at the weak point in the Democratic tick­
et by calling Francis a grain gambler and tried to revive
some of the enthusiasm of 1840 by talking "hard cider,"
"log oabin," and "Tippecanoe."
Too many guesses as to what might have happened nul­
lify any conclusions whioh might be drawn from the tabula­
tion of the ballots in 1888.
Francis ran about 6,000
votes behind the other candidates on the state ticket.
Half of the 6,000 who split their ballots were in St.
Louis, and the others were scattered fairly evenly among
the counties.
A good guess is that the saloon keepers
and members of the old machine in St. Louis took their
revenge, and that a few farmers in the rural sections voted
for Kimball because Francis was a grain dealer.
The Demo­
crats continued to hold all the state offices, but for the
first time since 1872 their governor had failed to secure
a ipajority of all the votes cast.
The combined Republican
and Union Labor vote for governor in 1888 was 50,000 more
than in 1884 and the Democratic vote had increased only
St. Louis Republican, March 27, 1888; St. Louis Re­
public. 2. lhi and 13. November 5, 1888; St. Louis
Globe-Demoorat. August 23, September 17 and 28, 1888.
The same trend, which had been noticed In 1884,
had continued*
In the congressional elections the Demoorats lost
four districts, the one set aside for the Republicans in
the southwest section and the three composed of St. Louis
and a few of the counties to the south and west of the
In these districts as well as In the southeast the
Republicans made their largest gain in votes*
The Demo­
crats immediately after the election thought the defeats
in the districts in St. Louis were the result of the Republloan-Labor fusion and the desire of the manufacturing
interests for a tariff.
An investigation subsidized by
the Democratic state committee, however, later discovered
enough evidences of fraud to warrant an investigation by
a federal grand jury*
Charges were brought that hundreds of Negroes brought
in from other states, hundreds of dead men, and aliens
fraudulently naturalised a short time before the election
voted with the Republicans*
Since about thirty were in­
dicted and convicted in federal court in St. Louis for
fraudulent practices in the election, and a large
Official Directory of Missouri for 1885 (St. Louis,
1^85). 17: 0ff1 c1&l~ilanualo f Missouri. 1889-1890,
11, 12, IS* W e democrats ^EEought they lost 15,000
or 20,000 votes in St* Louis because of the ?/ets but
subsequent discovery of frauds undoubtedly accounts
for many of them. St. Louis Republic. November 9,
10, and 11, 1888.
-181Hepublioan slush fund was raised in St. Louis, there is
some justification for concluding that fraud accounts for
some of the growth in Republican strength.
As many labor­
ers, like their fellows in other parts of the country,
were probably forced to vote the Republican ticket either
by direct or subtle means, more of the increase might be
accounted for in this way.
In the election of senators and representatives to
the state legislature, the Democrats retained a majority
of ten in the Senate and sixteen in the House, while the
third party lost one- in the Senate and gained eight in
the House.
Since all of the eleven Union Labor represen­
tatives were from St. Louis, one might guess that a trade
was arranged so that Kimball received Union Labor votes
and the candidates for representatives received Republican
An analysis of the personnel of the General Assem­
bly shows that there were four farmers and nineteen law­
yers in the senate and fifty-one farmers and thirty-one
lawyers in the house.
Farming seemed to be a very desir­
A facsimile of a note book owned by J. W. (Barbed
Wire) Gates showing those who contributed $1,000 or
more to the slush fund, in St. Louis Republic, July39,
1892. In 1890, the St. Louis Republic charged that
the federal courts had been packed to keep HBarbed
wire Monopoly Gates'* and "Major Bagging Combine
Pearce" from being convicted and that Harrison had
rewarded the instigators of the purchase of three
congressional districts with the control of the pat­
ronage. St. Louis Republic. May 10, July 2, 1890.
For the story of the grand jury investigations see
St. Louis Republic. March 4, (Footnote to page 182.)
182able occupation, since the members listed their occupa­
tions, as farmer-lawyers, farmer-bankers, farmer-teachers,
farmer-preachers, farmer-editors, and farmer-druggists.
If the word farmer connoted reformer as it had in 1887,
the next legislature would be a reform body.
In nominating a chaplain for the House of Representa­
tives in the General Assembly which met in 1889, Champ
Clark said, "We also need to be saved from the Republicans."
"Save the state from the Republicans," might
well have been the slogan of this legislature.
The Demo­
crats were convinced that they had lost St. Louis because
of the Republican alliance with the saloon bosses and the
use of money.
The newspapers had been emphasizing the
need for taking the saloons out of politics and the need
for election reform before the GeneralAssembly
Francis in his Inaugural address and Governor Morehouse
in his biennial message insisted that an Australian ballot
law be enacted, and Francis indicated the new attitude of
the Democrats on the prohibition question when he said,
"Sumptuary legislation is unjust legislation, but the cor­
rupting influence of the saloon on the morals of the com­
munity and the politics of the country should be checked
(Continued from page 181.) 1889.
For the story of
the oonviotions for the frauds of 1888 see the St.
Louis Republic. March 2, 1896.
Appletonfs Annual Cyclopedia, 1886, 576; 1888, 567;
Official Manual of Missouri, 1889-1890, 57-80.
St. Louis Republic, January 6, 1889.
and confined to the narrowest possible limits.”
The organization of the two houses and the appoint­
ment of oommittees indicated that the reformers were in a
majority, but Morehouse’s conservative remarks about the
cry of the Confederates for revenge on the saloons re­
vealed a different feeling among the Union men on this
Ben Deering, a Methodist preacher in Jefferson
City who had worked for the Democrats in the southeast
counties in the fall, led the Prohibition lobby.
bills were soon introduced into both houses and the strug­
gle to pass one of them began.
The aim of these bills was
to eliminate the influence which saloon keepers were able
to exert in politics and not to hinder the sale of liquor.
To keep saloons from assuming the character of a club, it
was proposed that all games, chairs, tables, and obstruc­
tions to the public view be removed, and rear entrances
A high license issued tinder severe restrictions
was suggested to limit the number of saloons in the slums.
The automatic loss of the license when the keeper was
elected to public office was designed to keep the owner
out of politics.
Shoemaker and others, Messages and Proclamations of
the Governors of the state of Missouri, 12 volumes
Ctfolumbia,' l9zti=l9$6), V H , “T73-175, 520-222; St.
Louis Republic. January 2 and 3, February 3, 1889.
St. Louis Republic, January 2, 12, 16, 18, 19, and 22,
February ll" and 12, 1889.
184The Republicans were forced into the position of op­
posing the bills because of the large number of German
voters in their party and because the bills were Intended
to reduce their strength in elections.
The newspapers
again were filled with the stories of lobbies and their
pernicious influence.
The liquor interests seriously op­
posed the bills because their passage would reduce the
number of retail distributors.
They opened a bar in a
committee room in the basement of the capitol building and
the legislators visited it in droves, if the newspaper
stories were true.
Either because of principle or the
corrupting influence of the lobby, enough Democrats Joined
the opposition to defeat an effective bill.
On an election reform which would benefit the party,
the Democrats were more likely to agree.
The fraudulent
voting in St. Louis in 1888 was not needed to confirm the
belief of the Democrats that the Republicans had neither
morals nor scruples on election day.
The memories of Re-
anstruction were kept alive, the newspapers told of train
loads of Negroes sent to Ohio in 1880, and Governor Crit­
tenden had blocked a move to give St. Louis an experience
with United States marshals in the election of 1884 like
St. Louis Republic, January 9 rand 23, April 10, 25,
and 30, May 3, 1889.
-185that of Ohio in the election of 1880,
The Republicans
had so nearly won the election in 1888 that some way of
stopping their frauds must be found.
The aim of such a law, according to Champ Clark who
Introduced 6n Australian ballot bill in the House of Rep*
resentatives, was to discourage bribers by eliminating
their ability to learn how the voter cast his ballot, to
remove the opportunity of corporations to "bulldoze"
their employees, and to secure the advantages of a free
ballot, a fair count, and an unbought vote for the Demo­
crats of Missouri,
The Senate bill, which differed from
Clark's only by limiting the use of the Australian ballot
syBtem to towns over 5,000, was easily passed, although
the corporation lawyers, some conservative Democrats, and
about half of the.Republicans opposed it.
St. Louis Republican. January 9, 1880; Ootober 4,
November 2 and 4, lfe84; Shoemaker, Messages and
Proclamations, VI, 579-580. Crittenden hearcL of the
scheme of deputizing 140 United States marshals to
supervise the election in St. Louis. He immediately
issued orders to all chiefs-of-police and sheriffs
to deputize extra help since the move to deputize
United States marshals was evidence that the federal
officers expected disorder. The police commissioners
in St. Louis made plans to increase the force 600 men
on election day and sought legal advice as to the
authority of United States marshals at the polling
places. Upon this advice the police were ordered to
arrest every marshal, who was in the rooms with the
judges. The judge of the federal court in St. Louis
upon hearing this refused to deputize those men who
were already collected in the courtroom and the
police commissioners did not appoint their special
One of the sections of the hill required that a third
party must have cast 3 per cent of the votes in the last
election or go through a complicated procedure to have its
name put on the ballot.
The third party men, who changed
the name of their party so often, thought this section
had been included to hinder their political activities.
Although no direct evidence was found to substantiate
their claims, it is easy to believe that they were right.
Another bill, to guard the selection of candidates from
fraud, was passed to accompany the Australian ballot act.
Penalties were placed on acts calculated to nullify the
honest selection of candidates in the primaries oonducted
by any party organization.
The Farmers* Alliance and the Wheel, which were grow­
ing so rapidly, tried to exert pressure by sending peti­
tions for legislation.
One county organization asked that
owners of property be exempted from paying taxes on more
than their equity, option dealing be stopped, salaries
of state and oounty officers be lowered, and a prohibi­
tion amendment be submitted to the voters.
An estimate
of the influence of the organizations, however, is impos­
sible, since many of the laws introduced and passed by
St. Louis Republic, January 4 and 6, April 19, May 4,
November 26 and'"27, 1889; California Newspaper»
May 9, 1889; Laws of Missouri, 1889, 55th General
Assembly (Jefferson City, 1889), 105-111.
Laws of Missouri, 1889, 111-112.
-187the General Assembly were like those which the Confeder­
ates had been demanding.
The fright which they had given
the Democrats in the last election, their continued rapid
growth, and the tendency of those Democratic legislators,
who were members, to vote with the Republicans on proposi­
tions to lower the expenses of the session, must have had
some effect.
The attempt to pass an effective bill to
eliminate some of the evil effects of the saloons, and
the enactment of laws to tax express companies, to stop
speculation in grain, to provide estate inspector of
grains, and to make pools, trusts, and combinations il­
legal manifested a tendency toward fulfilling the demands
of the farmers' organizations.
This legislature like those of 1883 and 1885 also
demonstrated a tendency to enact social legislation.
Railroads were required to install safety devices to
St. Louis Republic. January 26 and 31, February 5,
10, and 14, 1688 California Newspaper. February 7.
and 28, 1889. Ten legislators were members. The
two organizations did not fuse until August. Sinoe
the organizations were strong in the southeast coun­
ties where watermelons were an important product, the
passage of a bill to allow a shipper of watermelons
to ride the train free of charge and peddle his
product enroute seems to indicate a tendency to try
to please the Wheel and the Alliance. Laws of Mis­
souri . 1889. 64. They made a special effort to se­
cure""farmTrepresentation on a committee which was to
confer with like committees from Kansas, Texas, Ne­
some other states about what steps should
be taken to curb the Beef Trust which was being in­
vestigated by a senatorial committee at that time.
The General Assembly placed three farmers on the com­
mittee of five, but whether the Wheel and Alliance
caused them to do so is not clear.___________________
188protect, their employees and the traveling public from
The adulteration of candy was forbidden.
Cities over 30,000 were enabled to inspect and control the
quality of milk sold within their limits.
The continued
interest in the problems of labor was again evinced by
the passage of an act forbidding the importation of per­
sons or associations to discharge the duties of the police.
The trend toward a reformation of the social and economic
order was continued by the legislature of 1889, and the
passage of the Australian ballot and primary laws revealed
that political reforms would likely be among those con37
sidered in the future.
Although the Democrats were said to be proud of their
record in the legislature, they had not solved all their
The Australian ballot law might work to
their advantage, and the protection given to the people
against political bosses by the primary law might tend to
reduce the bitterness of factionalism in the nominating
prooess, but other problems were arising over which they
had no control.
The city and country coalition to regu­
late the railroads had brought together a majority which
the older conservatives could not withstand.
Since the
Confederate farmers had been somewhat handicapped by
Laws of Missouri» 1889, 52, 53, 63, 92-100, 124, 135;
Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedia, 1889, 566,
St. Louis Republic, May 25, 1889.
-189their part in the Rehellion, the addition of the city
progressives seemed to remove some of the stigma from the
new faction.
Probably as a result of this the leadership
of the faction fell into the hands of the city group.
With the rise of the Young Democrats under the leadership
of David R. Francis in 1888, the state party machinery
passed into the hands of him and his friends who repre­
sented the commercial interests.
After the older conser­
vatives ceased to furnish enough opposition to hold the
city and country progressives together and after the rail­
road legislation had been secured, a new factional divi­
sion began to appear.
The country versus city pattern, which seemed to
characterize the division of the Democratic party after
1888, began to assume shape because of the tariff issue
in 1884.
It became more marked and probably caused some
of the Democratic manufacturers to bolt the party in 1888.
Since the laws to prevent speculation in grain and to pro­
vide for state grading of grain might serve to give Chica­
go an advantage over St. Louis, a small break between the
representatives of the farm and commercial interests was
made during the legislative session of 1889.
The omis­
sion of the money plank from the platform of 1888 and the
exalting of the tariff issue during the campaign seems to
have been a concession to the representatives of the
St. Louis Republic. January 5 and 21. 1889^
190commeroial interests who were ardent supporters of Cleve­
land and his tariff theories because the farmers had con­
sistently demanded free silver since 1878.
Since Cleveland’s nomination in 1898 was being pre­
dicted as early as 1889, and the Farmers* Alliance move­
ment was growing incredibly, the forces were at work that
were certain to bring a clash.
In the Alliance school
the farmers were taught that the expansion of the currency
was more important than the tariff.
Fart of the educa­
tional program was also designed to develop a class con­
sciousness among the farmers.
One of the devices for in­
culcating the desired group feeling was to arouse a hatred
for the "city dude," and the political ties of the citycountry coalition were thereby weakened.
In trying to
induce the farmers to join in commercial
enterprises the Grange had taught that there was a direct
competition between the farming and commercial occupa­
The Alliance did not emphasize such enterprises as
did the Grange, but it did continue to teach the doctrine
of conflicting interests which was so dangerous to party
harmony in Missouri.
Under the direction of the city leaders, the Demo­
cratic workers used all the year, 1889, to prepare for
the election of 1890.
At a large conference in St. Louis
plans were made to extend the party organization down to
St. Louis Republic, February 8, 1889.
-191school districts so that some trusted worker would he in
close touch with the voters.
Speakers were sent over the
state to speak about the effect of the tariff on laborers
and farmers.
In this way it was hoped that the teachings
of the Farmers' Alliance could be counteracted and the
farmers led to believe that the tariff was a more impor­
tant issue than money.
Leaders like Senators Vest and
Cookrell, who had the confidence of the farmers, lent
their time and efforts to the program.
The Union Labor newspaper editors who had hoped that
their party would fall heir to the disruption which the
Farmers' Alliance would bring in the Democratic party,
made a direct answer to the Democrats' indirect campaign.
They attacked Cleveland's money theories, pointed to his
record to prove that he was a friend of the national
banks, and cited facts to prove his devotion to "Lombard
8treer^ London, and Wall street, New York." They also be­
gan to rebuild their party organization and asked all
cal Union Labor clubs to hold monthly meetings to talk
about the money, land, and transportation issues.
Shortly after the national convention of the farmers*
organizations and the Knights of Labor at St, Louis in
St. Louis Republic. February 7 and23, August 22,
1889; California Newspaper, August 23, September 26,
California Newspaper, March 14, 1889, quoting the
World; January 17, February 24 and 28, 1889,
192Dec ember, 1889, Democratic newspapers began to support the
Farmers* Alliance in greater numbers than ever
The farmers who were members of the third party were
suspicious of these actions of the newspapers and the ac43
tions of the Democratic politicians.
They made plans to
use the Alliance to foster the growth of their own party
in February, 1890, and did not like the competition which
the Democrats were apparently planning.
Their own
plans probably eaused them to be oversensitive to Demo­
cratic friendliness toward the farmers but they might have
been right when they accused the Democrats of trying to
steal the Farmers* Alliance.
The strength of the Republican party in 1888 had
given the Democrats a fright, and the forces which might
California Newspaper. January 30, 1889; Columbia Mis­
souri Statesman. February 12, 1890; St. Louis Repub­
lic, August £1, 1889; January 30, July 24, 189b.
TKe third party, then the Union Labor party, split
into two hostile factions in February, 1889. The
legislators of that party, who were ail from St.
Louis, ordinarily voted with the Republicans in the
legislature. The chairman of the state committee
called a convention of the party to chastize these
members. In their meeting a fight broke out which
the Sheriff of Pettis County was forced to stop. The
convention then divided and held separate meetings.
The farmers maintained their control of the party
machinery and declared the laborers were no longer
members. California Newspaper, January 10, Febru­
ary 22 and 28, 1889; St. louis Republic, February 5
and 23, 1889.
At a national conference in Kansas City in February,
1890, attended by Jesse Harper, A. J. Streeter, Mary
Ellen Lease, and other leaders, 300 in all, they de­
cided to ask the Wheel and the Alliance to join them.
California Newspaper. March 6, 1890.________________
oause a split and the loss of the election of 1890 were
too evident for the practical politician to overlook.
shrewd Democratic politicians in the Alliance and in the
commercial or Francis faction of the party had precedents
in party strategy since 1870 to guide them in coping with
the situation.
An attempt could be made to turn the farm
movement to the benefit of the Democratic party as the
leaders had tried to do in 1873, or they could adopt a
platform which would appease the farmers as they had done
in the off years, 1878, 1882, and 1886,
In this way they
could win the election of 1890 and keep the party united
until the more Important presidential election in 1892,
Whether the Democratic politicians in the Alliance
were making an effort to win its support for their party
or whether they were honestly trying to keep it on a non­
partisan basis, as they said, the struggle which developed
within the Allianoe was full of political significance for
1890 and 1892,
The trouble arose over whether the Mis­
souri Alliance should endorse the subtreasury plan which
the national organization had adopted at St. Louis in
No direct evidence was found that the Democratic
leaders agreed among themselves to use either of
the schemes, but subsequent events leads to the
opinion that they probably agreed to use both,
St. Louis Republic, August 18, 1890; May 11,
quoting a letter of H. W. Hickman, president
Missouri Alliance, which had been printed in
Rolla Herald; Sedalia Gazette, August 17 and
of the
If only a part of the 175,000 members were led to
accept the plan as a solution for the farmers* financial
difficulties, the Democratic party would be ruined.
it were made a part of the Democratic platform, the more
conservative would bolt; and if it were omitted, those
who had accepted the scheme would bolt.
The third party men who would benefit in either case
began their attach on the editor of the official publica­
tion of the State Alliance because he refused to accept
and advocate the subtreasury system.
Phil Chew, the edi­
tor of the Alliance organ, the St. Louis Journal of Agri­
culture . answered them in the same unbridled language
with which the third party press attacked, until the exec­
utive committee of the Alliance ordered the editorial
battle stopped.
The third party newspaper editors then
began to attaok the Democrats, and lecturers supporting
both sides of the subtreasury question began to tour the
* * 47
In a factional struggle within the Alliance, the
Democratic politicians had a number of advantages over
the members of the third or Union Labor party.
Since they
had always shown a tendency to cooperate with the Repub­
licans in state politics, many of the rank and file Demo­
crats considered the members of the third party political
St. Louis Republic. July 1, 1890; California News­
paper. May 8, June 19, 1890.
The former Democrats in the third party were
looked upon as traitors.
The Union Labor representatives
in legislature of 1889 had voted against many of the re­
forms which the farmers had supported.
Although they had
been read out of the party, their actions handicapped the
farm element which retained the name Union Labor and the
party machinery.
As a consequence it was natural for
the Democratic members of the Alliance to join with their
fellows in opposing the third party men.
If all the Demo­
crats oodperated, they would have a controlling majority
in the Alliance convention in spite of the fact that some
Democratic newspapers said the Union Laborites and Repub49
licans would oppose them.
The sharp depression which followed so closely on
passage of the McKinley tariff lent strength to the argu­
ments of Democratic leaders that the tariff was more im­
portant than the money question.
As the real issue be­
tween the Democrats and the third party men was whether
the supply of money should be increased by free silver or
the subtreasury plan, the Democratic farmers who had fa­
vored free silver for a long time would not be easily led
to support another scheme.
Since their convention came
before the annual State Alliance meeting, the Democrats
had another important advantage.
They could nominate a
See page 192.
St. Louis Republic, August 15 and 14, 1890.__________
196ticket and adopt a platform which would meet the Alliance
No Democrat would then need to vote with the
third party men in the. Alliance meeting because of his
When the Democratic convention met at St. Joseph on
J’une 11, 1890, the members of the Alliance were in com­
plete control.
They met in caucus before going to the
convention and discussed their strategy.
U. S. Hall,
state lecturer for the Farmers* Alliance, was floor lead­
It was he who nominated the winning candidates in
the convention.
It was evident from their actions on the
floor of the convention that the Alliance delegates had
not agreed in the caucus upon who should be their candi­
Three or four Alliance men were nominated for
each office but after supporting them for a while the Al­
liance men always turned to the one nominated by Hall.
Of the three candidates nominated two were members of the
The candidate for supreme judge, James B.
Gantt, could not be a member because lawyers were in­
eligible, but since the railroads opposed his nomination,
he was qualified.
L. E. Wolfe of Moberly was nominated
for superintendent of schools, and H. W. Hickman, presi­
dent of the state Farmers* Alliance and treasurer of the
national organization, for railroad commissioner.
was some serious objection to Hickman because he had been
a candidate on an independent ticket in 1888, but the
farmers did not heed the argument that party regularity
was a qualification for office.
The platform adopted was almost identical with that
adopted by the national convention of the Southern Alli­
ance at Ocala, Florida, in December, 1890,
The most sig­
nificant difference was the omission of the subtreasury
An adjustment in the tariff, laws to circumscribe
the powers of monopolies, free and unrestricted coinage
of silver, repossession of the public lands for the bene­
fit of actual settlers, and honest elections free of any
interference from the federal government were among the
There was now no need for a Democrat to turn against
his party on principles taught in the Alliance school.
Since the arguments would now be whether free
silver or the subtreasury system was the better to in­
crease the supply of money, the third party men were at
a distinct disadvantage.
They realized the significance
of the action taken by the Democratic convention and im­
mediately turned their attack to the Democratic platform,
St. Louis Republic, June 11, 14, and 14, August 13,
1890; July 19', ISSO, quoting a statement by U. S.
Hall; St. Joseph Herald, June 10, 11, and 13, 1890;
Appleton*s Annually clop ed ia , 1890, 564.
Official Manual of Missouri for 1891-1892 (Jefferson
City, 1891), £64^205.
-198and warned that the Democrats would try to steal the Al52
llance at Sedalia in August*
The refusal of the annual convention of the State Al­
liance to adopt the subtreasury system as one of its de­
mands blasted the hopes of the third party men for 1890.
It also revived their opposition to the Democratic party.
There had been a tendency to support the Democrats in
their struggle with the railroads, and the feeling was
such that one faction fought a plan to fuse with the Re­
publicans in 1884.
After the disappointment and chagrin
aroused by the defeat at Sedalia, the Democrats could ex­
pect more trouble from them.
In fact the Democrats ex­
perienced some trouble in 1890.
A few Alliance organiza­
tions in counties Where the third party was strong defied
the declaration of purposes and the decrees of the Sedalia
convention, and nominated candidates for the local offi­
They were able to elect state representatives in
six of the ten contests which they entered and several
county officers besides.
California Newspaper. July 24, 1890; July 17, 1890,
quoting the Cape Girardeau Era. The St. Louis Re­
public, June 14, 1890, said”tEat Hickman*s nomina­
tion would probably put an end to Republican attempts
to pervert the Farmers* Alliance.
They elected representatives from Adair, Bates, Ben­
ton, Camden, Ste. Genevieve, and Worth and had can­
didates in Harrison, Mercer, Polk, and Shannon, Offiolal Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892. 76-81. A large
third pay-hy vote had been cast in each of these coun­
ties in past elections. U. S. Hall said that he
suspended over twelve (Footnote continued to page 199.
The campaign of 1890 in Missouri was a quiet affair.
The Union Labor party worked vigorously and used the
camp-meeting type of campaign that was being used in Kan­
sas) but the members were too few in number to arouse
state wide interest.
The Republicans failed to show their
usual campaign spirit and ingenuity.
The Democrats used
the opportunity to continue their tariff arguments.
little or no mention was made of free silver, their
thoughts were probably as much on 1892 as 1890.
The usual slump in the total vote in off-year elec­
tions, which in 1890 was 52,000 less than in 1888, was an
indication of the general apathy in 1890.
The Union La­
bor ites polled 6,000 more ballots in 1890 than in 1888,
but the Republicans cast 46,000 and the Democrats 12,000
The Democrats not only elected all candidates
(Footnote continued from page 198.) county charters
during the year because the organizations disobeyed
the rules of order. Charles Omega Wright, The Popu­
list Movement with Special Reference to Missouri,
Unpublished Master*s Thesis, Missouri“University,
1926, 67, quoting interview with Hall. W. A. Peffer,
The Farmers* Side (New York, 1891), 156-159, says
that Sail’s victory at Sedalia kept the Populists
from gaining strength in Missouri.
The editor of The Newspaper reported that the cam­
paign was one of the quietest ever known. The other
newspapers gave much less space to campaign news and
Official Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892, 33, 39. The
Qpmpa-pi «rmg pra made on the votes cast for supreme
judge in each year. The Democrats* are 250,011; the
Republicans*, 188,223; and the Union Laborers*,
25,114. The Prohibitionist party which cast 4,302
votes in 1888 cast only 989 in 1890.
-200for state offices but also widened their majority in both
houses of the state legislature.
They elected all of the
congressmen, and the legislature would elect a Democrat
for United States senator.
It would probably be more accurate to say that the
Farmers' Alliance won the election.
Two candidates for
state office were members and the other was its choice.
All fourteen congreesmen and Senator Vest, who was a can­
didate for re-election, had taken the pledge to support
their program of demands.
Of the 174 state legislators
in the next General Assembly six were elected on a Farm­
ers' Alliance ticket and twenty-nine of the Republicans
and 105 of the Democrats were pledged to vote for the
farmers' interests.
Ninety-four of the 158 legislators
elected in 1890 reported that their occupation was farm­
Frank M. Drew, "The Present Farmers* Movement," Po­
litical Science Quarterly, VI (June, 1891), 307,
There is a slight variation between the numbers he
gives and those in the Official Manual of Missouri,
1891-1892. 76-81, 359-3SS7 liee California Newspaper,
November 13, 1890, for the number of farmers. For
some of the letters of those United States congress­
men who took the pledge see California Newspaper,
August 7, 1890; Columbia Missouri Statesman, August 6,
September 10, 1890; St. Louis Republic, August 19,
1890. The accompanying pledge was printed in the
State organ. Drew. Political Science Quarterly, VI
(June, 1891), 303, nuoting the St. Xouls Journal of
Agriculture. June 19, 1890.
I pledge myself to work and vote for the above
demands irrespective of party caucus or action.
(Footnote continued to page 201.)
Since the controlling majority of the next General
Assembly would be farmers, there was much speculation
about what they would do.
The pessimistic and those who
had interests to lose had "gloomy views" about the things
"a lot of inexperienced farmers" m£ght do.
Those who
were worrying about the lack of legislative experience
and those who feared the passage of radical legislation
should have been reassured by the presence of U. S. Hall,
the president of the State Farmers' Alliance.
He was a
shrewd, well educated, lawyer-farmer, who was more the ag­
gressive, far-Bighted, accomplished Democratic politician
than a farm radical.
He was liberal in many of his views
but in others quite conservative.
Although many of the
farmers were restive under his leadership, his position
enabled him to exercise a restraining influence.
(Footnote continued from page 200.)
Name of candidate
Post Office _
County_______ State
Cut out the above and have every candidate, Irrespective of party sign, and put these contracts
in the hands of your county secretary under the
supervision of your county executive board. If
any candidate refuses to sign unqualifiedly,
vote against him and use your influence to elect
those who sign, irrespective of party.
St. Louis Republic t January 2 and 14, 1891.
Hall was elected President at the August meeting in
1890 which rejected the subtreasury system.
-202He called a caucus of farmers as soon as they arrived
in Jefferson City and remained to direct their actions
during the session.
He directed the attention of the cau­
cus to the necessity of making officers of corporations
liable to fines and jail sentences for the failure of the
corporations to comply with the law.
He thought that
railroads and e g r e s s companies should be liable for all
damage to goods while in transit, but said that it was
wrong in principle to make a railroad responsible to an
employee for the negligence of a fellow workman.
In sup­
port of his argument that the state should supervise the
printing of textbooks, he dwelt more on the poltical sig­
nificance than on economic abuses.
He contended that the
West and South were being traduced by the perversions of
the truth of history which were calculated to keep alive
the "sectional animosities of the last war," and that the
protectionist doctrines of the Northeast were being taught
in the textbooks which were written and printed there.
The "Twelve Apostles of Reform," printed by the Re­
public . more nearly expressed the aims of the farmers than
Hall’s speech, between whose lines can be read his inten­
tion to exert a conservative influence for the benefit of
the Democratic party in 1892:
(1) Make the Australian
ballot law apply to the whole state, (2) regulate and fix
charges for express companies, (3) harmonize and reduce
St. Louis Republic. January 7, 1 8 9 1 . ____________
203the freight on livestock, (4) textbooks published by the
state, (5) allow road districts to fix a tax to build
roads, (6) regulate building and loan associations,
(7) amend and strengthen the anti-trust law, (8) revise
the code of criminal procedure with reference to change
of venue, (9) revise the chapter on fees, (10) regulate
pool selling, (11) amend the grain inspection law, and
(12) provide for underground wires in certain cities*
This list of reforms, which indicated that the farmers
would continue the work of the reform legislature of 1889,
proved to be a good prediction of those things which would
be considered.
The Farmers1 Alliance did not interfere with the or­
ganization of the legislature*
The Demoorats and Republi­
cans followed the usual procedure in electing officers and
appointing committees, but, since the St. Louis leaders
protested their lack of representatives on some of the
committees and complained that too many Republicans were
on the ways and means committee, the farm majority must
have made itself felt.
The capture of the legislature
by the farmers also had an effect on Governor Francis, if
his biennial message expressed his attitude.
He said that
the discontent of the farmers was the result of class
legislation and a limited supply of money, which were
St. Louis Republic, January 1, 1891.
Ibid.. January 8 and 17, 1
the fault of the national and not the state government.
The ... farmers who have suffered most as a con­
sequence of these unjust discriminations seem to
have become thoroughly aroused to the realiza­
tions of their burthens, and are making concerted
and intelligent effort to correct the evils from
which they suffer. They ... merit the encourage­
ment of fairminded men.
His conclusion that the state should do all it could to
rectify the situation seemed to be assurance that he would
not use his veto power to circumvent the work of the ma, ,
Although the farmers had a majority and were well
led, they met with difficulties in the passage of laws.
Their attack being centered on the control of corpora­
tions in general, rather than on railroads alone, as was
the case in 1867, they encountered opposition on some
bills from the city representatives and from members of
their own group.
The lobbyists were present as usual and
succeeded for a while in hindering the passage of bills in
the House by managing their placement on the calendar.
When the farmers learned this, they secured the appointment
of a committee to supervise the arrangement of the calen­
dar and threatened to drive the lobbyists from the capitol
Their committees were sometimes either misled or corrupted
because some bills were so changed that they were ineffec­
tive and others were never reported.
The Globe-Democrat
which was critical and sarcastic about the farmers during
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII, 224.
205the session said, "Stupidity on one side and corruption on
the other is likely to write a disgraceful epitaph," but
the record of progressive legislation enacted in 1891
seems to prove the pessimism unfounded.
The legislature devoted much of its attention to
bringing corporations more directly under the control of
the state.
All of those chartered in other states were
required to maintain an office within the Jurisdiction
of the Missouri courts.
were forbidden.
Pools, trusts and conspiracies
The expansion of the capital stock of
corporations without the consent of the shareholders was
made illegal.
The process of assessing and taxing cor­
porate property within the local subdivisions of the
state was specified and clarified.
To expedite the de­
tection of infringement and the enforcement of these
laws, the officers of corporations were required to sub­
mit detailed annual reports to the Secretary of State.
The officers who failed to make the reports or falsified
them were made liable to fine and jail sentence and their
companies subject to a forfeit of their character or a
sum of .money based on a percentage of their capital
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, February 26 and 28,
March 3 and 12, 1891.
Laws of Missouri, 1891, 36th General Assembly (Jef7erson~elty, 1S31 )T~T?, 72-73, 75-78, 85-86, 186-189,
-206Some of the other laws enacted met the demands which
the farmers had been making for a long time.
The legal
contract rate of interest which had been 10 per cent since
1855, was reduced to 8 per cent, and if no interest was
mentioned in a document the rate was set at 6 per cent.
The salaries of state officers and clerks were drastical­
ly lowered and the office of register of lands was abol65
In order to build roads counties were enabled
to levy
bonds if 100 taxpayers demanded an election and
a two-thirds majority voted for the proposition.
Australian ballot law was made to apply to all precincts
and not Just to towns of 5,000.
The primary law of 1889
was extended so that it now prescribed certain procedures
rather than making specified frauds in primaries misde66
A continued interest was shown in laws which protect­
ed the rights and health of laborers.
The blacklisting of
laborers was forbidden, and mine operators were required
to pay their workers every fifteen days, either in money
or due bills redeemable in cash.
Employers were directed
Laws of Missouri, 1891, 36th General Assembly (JefTersorTCity, 1891 ) T T 69-17^7 The Revised Statutes of
Missouri, 1855, 2 volumes (Jefferson City, 1856), 17
----B W .' "
Laws of Missouri, 1891, 3-4, 181; The Revised Stat­
utes of IITssourT, 1889, 2 volumes T«fefferson City,
T555)7”ll, 1644-1845.
Laws of Missouri, 1891, 133-137, 197-199.
2G7to furnish separate water closets, proper ventilation,
and fans in shops where women and children were employed.
Hailroads were required to furnish safety devices, and
cities were enabled to provide inspectors whose duty was
to enforce safety requirements in factories.
The General Assembly which met in 1891 was able to
pass a dramshop law more severe than that proposed in 1889
It also added licensing and regulating to the inspecting
power that had been given to cities which chose to insure
the purity and cleanliness of the milk sold within their
Much of the work was a general revision of the
laws passed in 1889 to make them more effective or elimi­
nate concessions which the reformers had to make in that
If the alien ownership of land had been forbid­
den in 1891, as it was in 1895, the Farmers* Alliance de­
mands for legislation would have been fulfilled in so far
as state action was concerned.
The others must come from
acts of the United States Congress.
The farmers* movement began to subside in 1891, and
disappeared as an organization almost as fast as it rose.
Unlike the movement in some of the neighboring states it
failed to develop a strong third party in Missouri.
Laws of Missouri, 1891, 81, 122, 159-163, 179-181,
Laws of Missouri, 1895, 38th General Assembly (Jef­
ferson Ci ty, lefcs)V £'07-206.
work, however, was not a failure.
It had reached its
height at the opportune moment to carry a reform program
begun in 1885 to its fruition in 1891.
This legislation
was supported and passed by the farmers in the Democratic
party who had traditionally opposed the interference of
the government in the affairs of the individual.
had come a transformation in their ideas about the method
of securing an equality of economic opportunity.
onoe felt that it could be secured by the application of
the laissez-faire theory, but now, judging from the pro­
gram of legislation, they had accepted the principle that
government intervention was necessary to guarantee the
individual economic equality.
Their inability to bargain on equal terms with the
railroads was their first lesson.
They had been forced
to demand government regulation of this natural monopoly
as a means of securing fair rates.
The Grange cooperative
enterprises failed to cope successfully with the monopo­
lists who had perverted the use of the law of supply and
demand for their own advantages.
As a result they were
forced to ask the state and national legislatures to in­
tervene in their behalf.
The principle evolved to support
their demand for protection against exploitation by the
railroads and monopolies would also apply to those laws
which required safe healthful working conditions in mines
and factories as well as those designed to protect the
-209health of the general public.
Further extension of the
principle would lead to the acceptance of a large body
of social legislation.
The acceptance of these doctrines by those farmers
who had passed through the Farmers* Alliance school had
already brought threats of a new factional split in the
Democratic party in Missouri.
It had not caused any seri­
ous trouble yet because the city leaders of the citycountry coalition to regulate the railroads had acquiescdd
in the extension of the principle of state control to
corporations in 1891.
The presidential election, however,
was likely to bring a clash in the state.
The city lead­
ers had already aligned themselves with the conservative
faction in national politics and the farm leaders would
join with their liberal Alliance brothers in the West and
The coming struggle was almost certain to destroy
the country-city coalition and make two new factions in
the party.
It was inevitable that the Missouri Democrats should
turn their attention to national issues in 1892.
1885, the Missouri legislatures and the governors had
worked consistently on a program of reform.
The Alliance
controlled legislature of 1891 had only served to place
the capstone on the body of progressive lav/s which had
been added from session to session.
There had already
been some success in securing national legislation, but
the full program of demands had not been granted.
It was
logical that the younger farmers who had accepted the
teachings of the Alliance should turn their attention to
the task of securing national action to supplement the
remarkable amount of progressively inclined legislation
which had been written into the state laws.
The legislative acts from 1885 to 1891 not only met
many of the demands of the farmers but also showed a ten­
dency toward reforms in other directions.
In 1885 laws
were passed which required railroad companies and corpora­
tions to give thirty days* notice before reducing wages,
specified the manner of measuring the work of mechanics
211and weighing the coal of miners when their wages were to
he calculated, enjoined employers to pay their laborers
in cash or tokens redeemable in cash, and made provisions
for the protection of female employees.
Guests in hotels
and boarding houses were safeguarded against the use of
oleomargerine and other so-called unwholesome compounds
and incidentally dairyman and hog feeders were given some
protection from the competition of cotton seed oil prod­
To these were added a number of laws which were
designed meet specific complaints about railroad compan­
In the regular and special session of 1887 a law was
enacted which gave the board of Bailroad Commissioners
authority and power to enforce a system of freight rates.
A number of minor laws growing out grievances against the
railroads were also placed on the statute books.
under twelve and females were forbidden to work in mines,
and a state mine inspector was provided in an attempt to
make mines safer.
The public health in first and second
class cities was protected by giving permission to cities
to inspect living animals intended for food, the oleomar­
gerine law was made harsher, and counties and towns having
over 2,500 people were given the right of local option on
Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedia. 1885. 604; Laws of Mis­
souri. 1885. 33rd General Assembly (Jefferson city,
IS55T, 55=53 ,“5^ 9571557 155=5557 207-208.
the prohibition question*
In 1889 the Australian ballot was adopted for towns
of over 5,000, and penalties were provided for fraudulent
voting in primaries.
A labor mediation board was estab­
lished, mechanics were given a first lien to secure their
wages, and the importation of persons or associations to
disoharge the duties "devolving on the police officers"
was forbidden.
Trusts, pools, and combinations were out­
lawed; dealing in options in agricultural products or
stocks and bonds was prohibited; and a board of grain in­
spectors was establslhed to grade grain sent to elevators.
Provision was made for the lnsepction of milk in towns of
over 30,000 and penalties were placed on the sale of adul­
terated candy.
A tax of 2 per cent was placed upon the
gross receipts of express companies, and railroads were
required to give all express companies equal and proper
The Alliance legislature which met in 1891 added
other social and economic legislation.
Cities were en­
abled to inspect and license dairies; factory regulation,
Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedia, 1887, 515-516; Laws of
Missouri. 18&?, 34th General Assembly, Regular SessTon
51-58, 101=103;
174, 179-182, 221, 282; Special Session (Jefferson
City, 1887), 15-28.
Appleton^ Annual Cyclopedia, 1889, 566; Laws of Mis­
souri. 1889.
General Assembly (Jefferson 3Tty,
I5SSTT, 55=53,-537 64','"95=100, 183=112, 123-135.
213intended to protoot the employees from unnecessary expo­
sure to dangerous machinery and to provide sanitary work­
ing conditions, were written into the law; black lists of
laborers were forbidden; and mine operators were required
to pay the miners every fifteen days.
The legal rate of
interest was lowered from 10 to 8 per oent; the laws pro­
hibiting pools and trusts were made more efficient; for­
eign corporations were required to establish an offloe in
the state so that legal processes might be served on them;
the reserves and undivided profits of financial institu­
tions were made subject to taxation; the Australian ballot
was extended to all voting precincts; and regulations for
party primaries were prescribed.
To oarry out the program
to secure more economy in government, this legislature
made a rather severe downward revision of all salaries and
fees paid to state officers.
As a result of this long list of reform laws, the
next most pressing demands could be granted only through
federal legislation.
The interest of the reformers in the
Democratic party in Missouri had become centered on feder­
al legislation even before the passage of the laws of 1891
Only one of the thirteen demands formulated by the Mis­
souri Alliance at Sedalia in August, 1890, was directed
Appleton*s Annual C
170, i79, 179-181\ 183, 186-189, 195-196
to the state legislature.
Since the Democratic platform
of that year was virtually the same as that of the Farm­
ers’ Alliance* most of the policies advocated were nation­
al rather than state.
In his second biennial message to
legislature in 1891, Governor Francis said that relief for
the farmers* troubles must come from Washington for it had
been caused by the class legislation enacted there during
the last thirty years.
The shift in interest is also
shown in the actions of the General Assembly to which
Governor Francis directed his remarks.
It adopted a resolution criticizing "Czar” Reed for
his behavior as Speaker of the House.
A memorial was
sent to Congress asking that a constitutional amendment
to provide for the direct election of senators be initi7
Congress was informed in another long resolution
that only enough money should be raised by taxation to
meet the expenses of a rigidly economical government and
that the tariff should be removed from paper pulp, bindertwine, cotton ties, barbed wire, lumber, white lead and
paints, agricultural implements, blankets, and kitchen
The opinion was expressed that the low prices
Floyd C. Shoemaker and others, Messages and Proclama­
tions of the Governors of the State or Missouri,
IS volumes (Columbia, 1522-1930) , Y1T7 224.
6. St. Louis Globe-Democrat, March 8 , 1891.
7. St. Louis Republic, February 14, 1891.
of farm products were oaused by the tariff and the manipu­
lation and contraction of the currency by the "kings of
Vail Street" and the national bankers.
Sixteen days after the adoption of this resolution
which also declared the Sherman silver purchase act a
fraud and demanded the free and unlimited coinage of sil­
ver, the Democrats were shocked into further action by a
resolution offered by a Republican member of the state
House of Representatives.
Whereas, Grover Gleveland has expressed
enmity toward the Vest unlimited coinage bill
now pending before the Congress of the United
Resolved, That the said Grover Cleveland
is no longer worthy of the leadership of the
Democratic party unless that party admits that
its principles as advocated on the stump,
should be repudiated.
The resolution was tabled after some debate, but another
declaring that Senator Vest's bill represented the opinion
of the people of Missouri was adopted.
The farmers in the party had learned their lessons
well in the Alliance school.
They no longer, if they ever
8* St. Louis Republic, January 20, 1891.
9. St. Louis Globe-Democrat, February 14, 1891. A free
ooinage bill introduce? by Senator Vest had passed
the Senate in January. Cleveland's letter to the
New York Reform Club calling the bill a "dangerous
and reckless experiment" had just been given to the
press. An « n Nevins, Grover Cleveland (New York,
1933), 467-468.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat. February 14, 1891.
had, considered the question of reducing the tariff more
important than expanding the currency.11
With the proba­
ble exception of Richard P. Bland, the leaders, however,
seemed to want to hold the party together regardless of
This might prove a difficult problem if the
Democratic party did not promise to expand the circulating
There were already rumors early in 1891 that the
third party men were planning to do what they did in August, seize control of the Missouri Alliance.
advocates of a radical expansion of the currency, they
would direct the program of education in such a way as to
make the Democratic members more determined than ever.
few votes led off by the Alliance route might defeat the
Democratic party in 1892 because its candidate for gov­
ernor had been elected by a minority vote in 1888.
The practical politician could see an opportunity to
win the national election of 1892 with Cleveland as presi­
dential nominee and the McKinley tariff as an issue, but
Cleveland's attitude on free silver had been made known in
his first administration, and opposition to him had
Nevins, 379; St. Louis Republic, August 13, 1896,
Governor William Joel Stone speaking about the elec­
tion of 1892 in his notification speech to Bryan.
Memphis Farmers Union, June 23, 1891; California
Newspaper. June l8 , X891, quoting the Butler Union,
■bells of a proclamation of U. S. Gall, president of
the State Alliance, stating that he had heard of the
plans of the third party to seize control of the
-217arlsen because of it in 1888.
Could the Democrats carry
the state in 1892 in the face of the added dissatisfaction
that had already manifested itself because he had declared
that free and unlimited coinage of silver was a "dangerous
and reckless experiment"?
Richard P. Bland (Silver Dick)
said, "I do not see how the Democratic party can indorse
free coinage and at the same time indorse Mr. Cleveland.
Nor do I see how
our party can do otherwise than to de13
mand free ooinage in the national platform."
Had the nomination of a president been before the
party in these early months of 1891, the free silver sup­
porters might have sent an anti-Cleveland delegation to
the national convention.
But the disoussion or agitation
of what should be done a year hence was far less interest­
ing than the actions of the Alliance legislature which was
in session.
This, along with the fact that the Vest bill
was defeated in the House of Representatives, allowed the
sudden burst of resentment, which flared against Cleve­
land, to die down in Missouri, as it did all over the
South and W e s t . ^
This gave the opportunity for a campaign to change
the attitude of Democratic farmers on the. relative impor­
St. Louis Globe-Democrat. February 19, 1891.
Cleveland’s letter to the New York Reform Club caused
a flare of anger which subsequently died out over the
South and West. Nevins, 468-469*.
-218tance of the two Issues, free silver and tariff reduction.
It was simply a revival of the campaign which had con­
tinued spasmodically since 1888.
Those Democrats who fa­
vored the nomination of Cleveland worked with renewed
energy from the summer of 1891 until the delegates to the
national convention were selected in May, 1892,
Bland agreed that the price of farm products was forced
to a gold basis by the McKinley tariff, which prohibited
the use of foreign goods in payment for American exports.
So well had this campaign been conducted that the de­
feat of another free silver bill in March, 1892, failed to
stir the silver Democrats in Missouri as Cleveland*s
letter had done*
The pro-Cleveland press was jubilant
because the defeat of this bill, which had been introduced
to embarrass him, would clear the way for the conservative
faction in the struggle for the delegation to the national
Since it was commonly agreed that Cleveland
was the most expedient candidate, if the Republicans were
to be ousted on the tariff issue as they had been in 1890,
those who opposed him were at a decided disadvantage.
control of the party machinery by Governor David R. Fran­
cis , an ardent supporter of Cleveland, made the handicap
St* Louis (semiweekly) Republic, March 1, 1892*
Kevins, 482; California Newspaper, April 4 and 21,
1896, quoting the Kansas City star and the St. Louis
of the free silver advocates In Missouri almost insur17
Francis had been on the committee sent to notify
Cleveland of his nomination in 1884, had led a St* Louis
delegation to invite him to be present at the G. A. R*
Convention in St* Louis in 1887, and had been subsequently
asked by Cleveland to determine whether it would be wise
to make the trip after the flurry aroused by the Battle
Flag Order*
Aoting upon Francis's advice, Cleveland de­
layed his visit to St* Louis until the Annual Fair and
Veiled Prophet Pageant a week later, at which time he was
a guest in the home of Mayor Francis*
Besides this per­
sonal acquaintance, Francis, who had been president of the
St* Louis Merchants Exchange, was classed as the leader of
the business element in the party as early as 1884*
experience and economic background naturally would have
led him to support Cleveland in 1892, although he had ex-
pressed his sympathies with the farmers in 1891*
An outside observer, who probably made the error of
considering the Farmers* Alliance and the Democratic party
still synonomous, thought that Missouri would be solid for
a Western man for the presidential nominee as late as
St. Louis Republican, August 23, 1884*
Ibid.: Nevins, 336-337; St. Louis Republic, August 25,
18^6; Walter B. Stevens, "When Cleveland Came to St.
Louis." Missouri Historical Review, XXXI (October,
1926), 153771
-220March, 1892*
The Sts* Louis Republic. however, refuted
this conclusion by citing its poll of the members of the
last General Assembly, which showed that a majority were
for Cleveland*
Although there is ample evidence that
many voters in Missouri opposed Cleveland and considered
the money issue more important than the tariff, there were
but two dissenting votes on the proposition to instruct
the Missouri delegation for him at the state convention,
which met on May 12, six days before the Georgia conven­
tion which Professor Nevins says was the "death knell" of
David B. Hill's "hopes."20
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic. March 4, 1892, in
answer to a statement in the Hew York Herald.
Nevins, 487; St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 13,
1892. It will be recalled that Hill had been trying
to win the support of the advocates of free silver
for his own nomination. In the campaign in Missouri,
about which more will be aaid later, Democratic
speakers and newspapers continued to argue that the
tariff issue was the more important question and to
interpret Cleveland's assertions and record as not
necessarily opposed to the free coinage of silver.
Governor Stone, in his notification speeoh to Bryan
in 1896, said there were thousands who thought the
monetary system the more important issue. St. Louis
Republic. August 13, 1896. In R. P. Bland's district,
the resolutions committee in the district convention
had difficulty on the question of indorsing the na­
tional ticket. The majority did not want to mention
the national ticket but wanted to commend Bland for
his silver fight. The minority wanted to commend the
national ticket and say nothing about free silver•
By a vote of 9 to 6 the committee agreed to amend
the majority proposition by adding an indorsement of
the national ticket. St. Louis (semiweekly) Repub­
lic, July 19, 1892.
Like Hill In his support for Bryan in 1896, the Sil­
ver advocates in the convention were "still Democrats,
very still" in their opposition to Cleveland.
As Governor
Stone later remarked, "they acquiesced" in the decision ol
the party and supported the ticket.
Bland, whose namA
was before the convention as a candidate for delegate at
large, received only eight votes out of a possible 527.
The only Incident to mar the Illusion of complete harmony,
on the matter of selecting delegates, arose as a oonsequence of a factional fight in St. Louis, which had spread
out into the state in the efforts of each faction to se­
cure votes for its candidate.
Even in this case, the dif­
ficulty in the convention was over the platform rather
than the candidate.
The old machine which had been defeated by Etancis
in 1885 had come back into power in the city government
with the election of Edward A. Noonan as Mayor in 1889.
Charles H. Jones, editor of the St. Louis Republic, was
an avowed candidate for delegate at large, with the sup­
port of the machine, and C. C. Maffit, chairman of the
Stone in notification speech, St. Louis Republic,
August 15, 1896.
Ibid.; California Newspaper, April 4, 1892. Almost
every issue of the St. Louis Republic in April, 1892
carried accounts of the factional troubles and
Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 13, 1892.
-228state central committee, was the candidate of the Francis
Bach had secured enough votes to d efeat the oth­
er because each delegate in the convention would vote for
four men out of a field of seven or eight.
The issue
which divided the factions was exposed as soon as the con­
vention opened.
The keynote speaker, Elijah H. Norton,
who was selected by a Francis controlled central committee
devoted his entire speech to the tariff question.
convention then shouted for a speech from Jones, who de­
clared that he was for Cleveland and that the tariff was
more important than the question of free silver, but that
the convention wanted free silver too.
Francis was worried and angry because he feared that
the convention could be stirred to revolt against the
Cleveland supporters.
The tension, which gripped the con­
vention while the permanent organization was being per­
fected and the candidates for delegates at large were be­
ing nominated, was broken by a gesture made by Jones.
Just before the balloting began he rose and called on all
his delegates to vote for Maffitt.
Francis, who reacted
to the situation quicker than Maffit, leaped to his feet
and asked Maffitt*8 delegates to vote for Jones.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 13, 1892; St.
Louis Globe-Democrat, May 13, 1892. Jones had el”
ready deolared himself for Cleveland in a letter in
the St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, April 6 , 1892;
Official Manual of Missouri« 1.6S9-1890 (Jefferson
223the tension now broken, the convention elected both Maf­
fitt and Tones, demanded tariff reform and free coinage of
silver in its platform, and instructed the delegates to
vote as a unit for Cleveland.25
At no time during the convention was there a vote
taken which exposed the relative strength of the two
groups, each of whom appeared to be anxious to avoid a de­
bate on the money question, but at the national convention
in Chicago the lines became more sharply drawn and the
friction within the party came to the surface.
delegates who opposed Cleveland forced a vote on the prop­
osition to ignore the unit rule to which the state conven­
tion had bound the delegation.
Six of the thirty-four
voted to ignore it, twenty voted against the proposition
and six did not vote.
In the selection of a national com­
mitteeman, the relative strength of the two factions of
the delegation was more nearly expressed.
John G. Prather
of St. Louis, who belonged to the Francis faction, re­
ceived eighteen votes and Charles H. Jones reoeived
More than a month before the convention to select
delegates to the national convention a Populist editor
remarked, "Dave [Francis] seems to have taken charge of
the Demoorats and proposes to run things to suit himself
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 13, 1892.
Ibid.. June 21, 1892.
Two were absent._______
and the kids.”
After the national convention it ap­
peared that the editor had made a good guess, but in the
field of state politics he was wrong.
Francis had become
unpopular with the more liberal members of the Farmers'
Alliance during the legislative session of 1891.
who looked with suspicion on the conservative president
of the organization, U. S. Hall, felt that he had been
influenced by Francis to eliminate some of the measures
demanded by the Alliance.
Franois's veto of a bill to re­
duce the legal rate of interest from 8 to 6 per cent and
another to amend the Australian ballot law by making the
process of having a third party ticket put on the ballot
less complicated, convinced the liberal minded farmers
that he was not their friend.
In the selection of can­
didates for state offices this opposition made itself
There were candidates for governor in the field as
early as February, and before the end of April there were
five touring the state.
In this spirited campaign
California Newspaper. April 4, 1892.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, July 20, 1892.
Shoemaker, Messages and Proclamations, VII» 256^257;
Memphis Farmer« " u n i o n , August 6 , 18^1; California
Newspaper, May 28, 1891. The amendment of the
An.eit.y»B iifln ballot law had been one of the planks in
the state platform of 1890. Official Manual of
Missouri. 1891-1892 (Jefferson City, 1891), 200.
national, rather than state issues, received the greatest
attention and the arguments were shaped to influence the
farm vote*
Richard Dalton, who had heen the representa­
tive of Ralls County in the 1891 session, sought to gain
the combined support of those who opposed Francis*
introduced the bill that required foreign corporations
which did business in Missouri to maintain an office in
the state, he hoped to secure the indorsement of the mem­
bers and ex-members of the Farmers* Alliance.
In order
to win the machine delegates in St. Louis, 1,200 of his
supporters from northeast Missouri came to St. Louis by
special train to a big gathering of Democrats.
speakers at this meeting, over which Mayor Noonan pre­
sided, criticized Francis, and told how the farmers had
saved the state by voting for a St. Louis man four years
Since some of the members of the machine had op­
posed the corporation bill which Dalton had introduced,
the speakers proved that Francis, who signed the bill,
must share the responsibility for its enactment.
bid for support was successful for in the primaries four­
teen days later, he won fifty of the sixty-four dele.31
gates.from St. Louis* <
JUdge James Gibson, who had been Francis's campaign
manager in Jackson County in 1888, announced his candidacy
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, February 26, March 4,
11, and 25, April 1, 15, 22, <56, and 29, 1892.
Ibid., April 15 and 29, 1892.
with the blessings of the Francis faction,
Pope Tea­
man , a preacher and farmer of Boone County who had been a
member of the Farmers* Alliance but had insisted in the
contention at St. Joseph in 1690 that membership in the
organization should not be a required qualification for
nominees, announoed his candidacy in March.
governor Stephen H. Claycomb of southwest Missouri, whose
record in the legislative fight to regulate freight: rates
in 1887 had probably won him the nomination for his of­
fice in 1888, announced his intention to seek the nomina32
tion about the middle of April.
Claycomb*s late announcement arouses the suspicion
that he entered the contest to draw strength from Dalton's
most serious competitor, William Joel Stone also of south33
west Missouri.
Stone, who had entered the race early,
had served as county prosecuting attorney from 1875 to
1874 and as congressman from the southwest district from
1887 to 1891.
He refused to carry his campaign into any
of the cities, choosing rather to make his appeal to
He wore an old "flop-hat" and posed during
St. Louis Republic, August 24, 1888; June 12, 1890;
Columbia Missouri Statesman, September 24, 1891; St.
Louis fsemiweekly) Republic, March 4, April 26, 1892;
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 24, 1888.
Clayoomb lived in Jasper County and Stone in Vernon.
Barton County separates Vernon from Jasper.
Official Manual of Missouri. 1893-1894 (Jefferson
6lty, 1893), 391; St. Louis (semlweeTely) Republic,
October 11, 1892.
the campaign as "Shirt-tail Bill."
of all the candi­
dates he was the only one who contended that the money is­
sue was more important than the tariff, and that concen­
trated wealth was supporting a policy which had made and
would make the farmer a special victim.
Dalton admitted
that the money issue was important, but said that the
tariff issue was more Important and should therefore re­
ceive first attention.
Yeaman, Gibson, and Claycomb em-
phasized the tariff and ignored the money question.
Dalton's St. Louis delegates proved a hindrance
rather than a help.
Because of the early lead which they
gave him, the contest developed into one of Dalton against
the whole field, with Stone his strongest opponent.
sides this the machine support made uncompromising foes
of the Francis faction and created a doubt in the minds of
the farmers.
The Globe-Democrat, pleased with the embar­
rassment of the machine, printed an interview with a farm­
er from the north part of the state who said:
We are not any too solid for him [Dalton] anyway,
because of the fact that he is solid with the big
'push' from St. Louis. Us country people don't
understand how this is. We look with suspicion
The St. Louis Republic, February 11, 1896, said this
of the 1892 campaign at a time when it was making a
desperate attempt to allay the free silver fever.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, March 11 and 25,
1892; April 15, 19, 26, and 26, 1892. Reports of
the speeches of the candidates in those issues.
on men or movements that are favored so strongly
by the unscrupulous bosses and their followers
from St, Louis.0 '
This set of circumstances proved fatal to Dalton’s hopes.
Although two prosperous years had somewhat pacified
the farmers and allayed some of their militancy in poli­
tics, they had been interested enough in the preconvention
campaign to elect 169 farmer delegates out of the 527.
They were a force that must be considered in the conven­
tion if and when the lines began to break and the ohoice
beoame one of principles rather than personalities.
the show of strength on the first ballot, Dalton had 203,
Stone, 177, Gibson, 80, Yeaman, 42, and Calycomb, 22
Dalton’s vote came from the eastern half of the
state, including the fifty from St. Louis; Stone's was
oentered largely in the western counties outside Jackson
County; Gibson's came from Jackson and Bay oounties, with
fourteen from St. Louis; Yeaman’s came largely from Boone,
Howard, and Callaway counties; and, Claycomb's came from
Jasper and Scotland counties with others scattered here
and there.
The Dalton and Gibson delegates were nearer together
in principles than any of the others.
Stone had most of
the Silver Democrats, while Yeaman*s and Claycomb's
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, July 19, 1892.
Ibid., July 18 and 20, 1892.
of a vote which is omitted.
Each had a fraction
delegates were probably a personal following.
If the
Dalton and Gibson votes could have been combined, they
oould have named the candidate, but Gibson's supporters
would not go to Dalton because of the enmity aroused in
St. Louis, and Gibson's managers were afraid that if the
Dalton crowd were broken, the St. Louis delegates would go
to Gibson and the farm delegates to stone.
On the nine­
teenth ballot the Yeaman vote began to go to Stone and a
stampede of the rural delegates resulted in his nomina­
While the stampede was in progress Gibson tried to
get his supporters to shift to stone, but they held on to
the bitter end.
Dalton cheered the nomination of Stone
and all seemed to be happy with the inconsistency whloh
plaoed a Gold Democrat at the head of the national ticket
and a Silver Democrat at the head of the state ticket*
Although the conservatives failed to nominate their
candidate for governor, they were able to exert a notice­
able influence on the state platform.
The platform of
1892 was one of indorsements, commendations, and denounce­
The one of 1890 demanded a program of legislation
that would meet the approval of the Farmers' Alliance on
land, transportation, money, and monopoly.
That of 1892
was silent on the money question and mentioned the remain­
der of the program only indirectly in pledging the party
to a "wise, economical and progressive policy.”
In 1892
St. Louis Globe-Demoorat. July 20 and 23 , 1892._____
-230the experience of reconstruction days was recalled to fur­
nish a basis for the commendation of the only plank of the
national platform which was mentioned, the one opposing
the "force bill."
Expediency and party fidelity, of
course, demanded that the national ticket be indorsed, but
the usual laudatory adjectives were conspicuously absentf0
In the campaign which followed, with the split in its
ranks so evident and so troublesome, the Democratic party
destined to suffer more embarrassment from the third
party men than it had since 1880.
The Union Labor party,
which had made a bid for dissatisfied Democrats in 1890,
had maintained its organization.
Its supporters and con­
verts, who had captured the offices in the State Alliance
meeting in August, 1891, avowed that the Alliance was not
a political organization, but they were careful to elect
delegates, who had third party inclinations, to the Na­
tional Alliance convention which was to meet to
olis, Indiana, in November.
It was at this meeting that
the decision was made to use the national organization to
promote the third party movement.
Experience, however,
had taught the Missouri third party men in the Alliance
that the wisest policy would be to keep the state organi­
See Official Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892, 204-205,
for the State platform of 1 8 9 0 and Official Manual
of Missouri, 1893-1894, 205-210, for the national
pTaiforms of 1842.
zation on its old non-partisan basis.
The members had begun to drop out of the Allianoe
rapidly after the national organization began to aid and
abet the third party movement.
By August, 1892, the mem­
bership was only one-third of what it had once been.
though the pacifying effect of two good crop years prob­
ably caused many farmers to drop their membership, the
third party men were afraid that the political activities
of the national organization had contributed to the rapid
loss of members.
Since some of the county lodges had de­
fied the declaration of purposes in 1890 and nominated lo­
cal candidates, the third party men hoped that a continua­
tion of the Allianoe program of education might cause oth­
ers to join the third party.
As the success of this strat­
egy depended upon the number of members in the Alliance,
the third party leaders wanted to avoid any action which
would cause a further loss in membership.
As a conse­
quence they worked independently of the Alliance in the
moves to promote a new party.
Official Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892, 37; St. Louis
R e p u b l i c "Aug'usVT9. 1891: California Newspaper,
September 3 and 4, 1891; John D. Hicks, The Populist
Revolt (Minneapolis, 1931), 221-222.
California Newspaper, June 18, 1891; May 14 and 19,
August 18, 15$S; May 28, 1892, Leverett Leonard’s
letter of resignation from the presidency of the
Missouri Alliance.
-232The third party men of Missouri were represented by
seventy-three delegates at the Cincinnati convention in
May, 1891, when the Peoplefs party was organized.
were also represented at the Industrial Conference at St.
Louis in February, 1892, which was to determine the atti­
tude of the different farm and labor organizations toward
the third party movement.
In June they met in state con­
vention at Sedalia and elected delegates to the national
People's party convention which was to meet at Omaha in
In the convention at Sedalia they also nominated a
full ticket of candidates for state office after consider­
ing a proposition to arrange a fusion with the Republicans
like that of 1884.
Leverett Leonard, president of the
State Alliance and a "sorehead Democrat," became their
candidate for governor.
For state treasurer they
The convention was promoted and planned by the third
party advocates in the Southern Alliance during the
annual meeting at Ocala, Florida, in December, 1890.
Hicks, 207-214. W. C. Alldredge, editor of the Cali­
fornia Newspaper, who was present, gave his version
of the Cincinnati convention in his newspaper on
May 28, 1891. In a farewell letter printed in his
editorial column on July 9, 1896, he said that he had
tried to support and extend the doctrines "known as
Populism for fourteen years."
Memphis Farmers Union, March 24, 1892; California
NewspaperT'TuIy 14, 1892; the St. Louis (semiweekly)
Rep'ublloT June 24, 1892, gives a list of the dele­
gates at Omaha.
Sedalia Gazette, August 17, 1890; Accounts of the
convention in St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic,
June 24, 1892, and Memphis Farmers Union, June 50,3892
233nominated D. N. Thompson of Bates County, who had heen
Master of the State Grange and a Union Labor leader in
Orlando D. Jones of Knox County, who had been the
Greenback candidate for Secretary of state in 1880, was
put on the ticket for the same office for which he had
been the third party candidate in 1886, Judge of the
supreme court.
There being three Judges to elect in 1892,
the People's party used one of these offices to show their
friendship for the Republicans and nominated W. S. Shirk,
who had been made a candidate for one of the vacancies by
the Republican convention in April.
An examination of the
whole ticket reveals that the People's party had nominated
men whose candidacy would serve as an Invitation for both
dissatisfied Democrats and Republicans.
As the Democrats were forced to make a campaign to
keep their own members from going to the Populists and at
the same time attack the Republicans on their record, the
Republicans made a serious blunder in nominating William
Warner of Kansas City for Governor.
The strongest influ­
ence in the extreme partisanship of the Confederate fac­
tion in the Democratic party was probably the memory of
Reconstruction days.
As the Cleveland Democrats were
St. Louis Republic. October 2, 1888; St. Louis Repub­
lican. July" 15, T580; June 3, 1886; St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, April 29, October 21, 1892; Cali­
fornia Newspaper, December 1, 1892; Official Manual of
Missouri, l5^1=T892, 50.
234largely those who had Whig, Union Democrat, or Liberal Re­
publican backgrounds, they would remain loyal without any
need of argument.
Thus Warner, who had been fraudulently
elected circuit attorney in Jackson County in 1868, fur­
nished the Democrats with an effective campaign argument
to hold in line those who were most likely to bolt.
Since Warner had been on the State supreme Court
which ruled in the famous Cummings Case that ministers
must take the "test oath," this story was revived to win
support of the churchmen.
The story of the $40,000,000
worth of railroad property, on which the state had a lien
of $31,735,000, but received only $6,131,000 in bonds
worth sixty cents on the dollar, was revived to combat
charges of Democratic inefficiency.
After arousing these
old fires, the "moss back" Democrats, who may have been
planning to bolt, could be brought to vote their old
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, April 29, July 29,
1892, The Supreme Court neid later that he was not
entitled to the office. During the campaign of 1892
the story was told that the Secretary of State, Rod­
man, assumed the right to count the ballots. He made
the count, declared Warner elected and then burned
the ballots. He is the "Count" Rodman in the follow­
ing bit of doggerel which was circulated during the
"Count" Rodman had a stove and he made it
mighty hot,
For he burned up all the ballots the Democrats
had got.
And when the thing was over, he delcared, "The
stove a burner,
For" he said, "twas a mighty factor in elect­
ing Major Warner."
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, September 27, 1892.
ticket with the argument a vote for Leonard is a vote for
Warner, because Leonard has no chance to be elected.48
In that part of the campaign designed to appeal to
the reason, the literature, editorials, and speeches were
designed to show that the tariff was of more immediate
oonoera than the money question.
When the money question
was mentioned at all the speaker was on the defensive.
Bland connected Cleveland so closely with the enemies of
silver that, according to a Populist paper, he never once
mentioned Cleveland’s name in any of his speeches.
openly declared that he was "unqualifiedly for free sil­
ver" but said that taxation was the "question of the
hour," and Vest sought to leave the impression that Cleve­
land differed with the free silver advocates only on the
matter of the ratio.
A statement in Cleveland’s letter
of acceptance kept Vest’s stand on this point from appear51
lng as a campaign quibble.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic. August 5 and 6 , Sep­
tember 2, 23, and 27, NevemBer"4, 1892. The consti­
tution of 1865 had required that ministers among oth­
ers must take an oath that they had not aided or
abetted the rebellion in any way, or cease their work
as ministers of the gospel. Father Cummings of
Louisiana, Missouri, refused to do either. He was
arrested and with the aid of others made a test case
of the matter. The Supreme Court of the United
States finally declared the provision unconstitution­
California Newspaper, October 20, 1892.
50.. St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, September 2, 1892.
"With this condition [that every dollar have an intrlnain value! absolutely (Continued to page 236*)
-236The Populists made a spirited campaign.
was filled with arguments, observations, and
of the Democrats.
Their press
Many of the Populist leaders from other
states toured Missouri, and General Weaver, their presi­
dential oandidate, did not neglect Missouri in his nation­
al speaking tour.
Although they were by no means opposed
to winning Republican followers, the general trend of the
Populist campaign indicated that they expected to draw
largely upon those Democrats who were or had been Alliance
members. 58
Because the Democratic party had been so long in con­
trol of the state government, the third-party men in Mis­
souri had come to look upon it as their natural enemy.
1888 they had shown that the Democrats were following the
Republican policy on money.
In commenting on the Demo­
cratic defeat in the national election of that year, the
Populist press said that the Democrats "went back" on sil­
ver to carry New York, then indorsed national banks to
carry New York, then attempted to put wool on the free
U s t to carry New York, and now had lost New York to the
They deserved to be "unwept, unhonored, and
(Continued from page 235.) guaranteed, both gold and
silver can be safely utilized upon equal terms in the
adjustment of our ourrency." St. Louis (semiweekly)
Republic. September 27, 1892. The Populist press
charged that Vest was telling a "deliberate false­
hood." California Newspaper, October 13, 1892, quot­
ing the Watchman.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, October 11, 1892;
California Newspaper, August 4, 1892, _______________
After the nomination of Cleveland in 1892
third party newspaper editors said that the Democrats had
nominated the "pet of the national banks" and a "known
friend of the money power."
The editors felt this was
sufficient proof that nothing had been gained in trying to
purify the party during the last two years.5*
After the oampaign had warmed up, Leonard resigned
from the presidency of the State Alliance, but in his let­
ter of resignation he asked for the vote of Alliance men
on a plea of principle.
To U. S. Hall’s claim that he
was an Alliance Democrat, a Populist newspaper retorted,
"Might as well speak of a Christian infidel."
A car*J toon, which was intended to portray the actual situation,
showed a group of Alliance men at the fork of a road.
U. S. Hall and Bichard Dalton were beckoning them to take
the fork which led to Wall Street, guarded by Republican
and Democratic policemen.
The other fork led to a para­
dise of civil liberty with a government of the people and
California Newspaper. December 13, 1888; November 29,
1888, quoting the ftural World.
1, 1892; California Newspaper, Au­
gust 11, i h s b ; St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, Au­
gust 23, 1892, quoting the Slater Index, said that
the county Alliance in Leonard’s home county, saline,
forced his resignation.
California Newspaper, August 11, 1892, quoting the
Torch of Liberty.
Union, June 30, August 6, 1892.
by the people*
If the Democratic state platform of 1890, and the re*
form legislation passed by Democratic General Assemblies
and signed by Democratic governors in the period 1885-1891
may be taken as criteria, the principles or demands of the
Populists in 1892 were acceptable to a large portion of
the Democrats*
The Populists maintained that a vote for
Weaver meant more money, less debt, less Interest, the de­
struction of "Pinkerton thugs," just transportation, an
income tax on millionaires, a postal savings bank system,
taxation limited to the requirements of economic govern­
ment, and the sharing of the benefits of civilization with
all who labored for a living*
The Populist’s had a good case and made a strong
peal on the principles of and loyalty to the farmers’ or­
ganization, but the farmers in the Democratic party did
not seem to be greatly affected.
Toward the end of the
campaign the Populist lines began to break.
Some of their
editors began to come out for the Democratic ticket, and
influential members of the Alliance published letters in
the press urging Alliance men to vote for Cleveland and
N. J. Wbllard, a member of the state executive camnitteq
California Newspaper, August 25, 1892.
Official Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892, 204-205, for
the Democratic platform of 1890; California News­
paper. July 28, 1892, quoting the Lamar Industrial
assured Alliance men that Leonard was wa good Christian
man but no statesman,* and said that Leonard *s own brother
had declared himself for Stone.
In spite of their misfortunes and difficulties, the
third party men cast 6,000 more yotes for president than
ever before and 16,000 more than for supreme judge in
Their 18,632 yotes in 1888 had grown to 25,114 in
1890 and 41,213 in 1892.
Although they cast about 4,000
less for Leonard than they did for Weaver, they were still
in position to wield the balance of power in state elec­
tions if they could control all their voters.
Stone had a safe plurality, but he, like Francis in
1888, did not have a majority in spite of the fact that
the Democrats had made a special effort to bring out the
stay-at-home reserve.
The 265,000 votes for Stone as
oompared with the 235,000 for Warner made a 30,000 margin
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, November 4, 1892;
the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 5 and 6, 1892,
charged that the Democrats had a fund of $100,000 to
bribe Populist editors and that the editor of a Warrensburg Populist newspaper was forced to leave town
because of the charge.
The Greenback-Labor vote for Weaver in 1880 was
35,135. The vote 25,114 votes in 1890 were for
supreme Judge. Edward Stanwood, History of the Presi­
dency from 1788 to 1899, revised hy bharles Knowles
feolton, £ volumes (Hew York, 1928), I, 417, 483, 517;
Official Manual of Missouri, 1891-1892, 30.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 8, 1892.
over the Republicans, which looked better than the 17,000
margin by which Francis won in 1888, but even in that dif­
ference there seemed to be a threat.
It probably meant
that some of those third party men who had remained with
the Republicans after the fusion of 1884 had gone into the
Populist party and might serve as an influential element
in promoting another fusion.
With the added members in
the Populist party, a fusion would defeat the whole Demooratio tioket, as the fusion had this time defeated a
Democrat for judge of the Supreme Court.
The Republicans having been the minority party since
1870, it was only logical that the third party should
fuse with them instead of the Democrats. In 1880,
four Greenback congressmen were elected in Missouri
by means of a fusion with the Republicans. It was
reported at the time that these congressmen had prom­
ised to vote with the Republicans in Congress on all
questions except the money question. St. Louis Re­
public. September 14, 20, and 31, 1880. A letter,of
one of these Congressmen, Joseph H. Burrows, to the
Republican boss in St. Louis, Chauncey I. Filley, re­
veals that this one at least was anxious that Fllley
should know that they had kept their bargain. He
oalled Filley's attention to the fact that the four
Greenbaokers from Missouri had aligned themselves
with the Republicans in Congress. Rollin J. Britton,
"Joseph H. Burrows." Missouri Historical Review, XXII
(Ootober, 1927), 3-12. 1 b 1084 the Greenbaokers and
Republican^ fused their strength on a Joint ticket
of state officers, which they called the Anti-Bourbon-Fuslon ticket. With the general dissolution of
the Greenback party, 1885-1889, some went to the
Democrats and some to the Republicans but most went
to the Union Labor party. FTed E. Haynes, James
Baird Weaver (Iowa City, 1919), 293-294; Haynes,
Third Party Movements, with Special Reference to
Towa~(Iowa City, 1316i , " m . 'Si'noe tlie ST,TOO votes
of the third party in 1880 had dwindled to 18,000 in
1888, a t which time the Republican vote showed a
large increase, the guess can be made that a number
of them had remained with the Republicans after the
fusion of 1884.
More dangerous to the Democratic party organization
were the progressive ideas and principles which had crept
in as a result of the twenty years of agitation, educa­
tion, and organization.
Now that the attention had been
definitely directed toward national affairs, a compromise
between the conservatives of the East and the liberals of
the West must be made or the national organization would
be sure to split*
Unless the last two years of farm pros­
perity continued to allay the farmers' militant attitude
in the field of politics, the Democratic farmers in Mis­
souri might not acoept another compromise like that of
The panic which struck in the spring of 1898 dispelled
any hopes which might have been entertained along this
Worse still for those who were concerned with par­
ty solidarity, the national administration, under the
leadership of Cleveland, chose to follow a course which
aggravated the issue which was so dangerous to party har­
mony in Missouri, as well as in other eastern and southern
Since Cleveland had insisted in 1887 that the
tariff was the basic cause of the farmers' and laborers*
troubles and his supporters had argued that the tariff was
a more Important question than the money, the liberal
Democrats in Missouri were justified in expecting him to
call a special session of Congress
to revise the tariff.
Nevins. 379; Governor Stone of Missouri and Governor
Altgeld of Illinois (Footnote continued to page 242.
-242Instead of this he calmly fished at Buzzard*s Bay and
withstood the cries of the financiers and representatives
of the money interest of the East, who were clamoring for
a repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act, until the
"suffering" in the West would soften the resistance of the
free silver proponents .
It would have been a strange re­
action if the liberal Democrats had grown to love Cleve­
land and the Easterners who rejoiced at the closing of
Western and Southern banks beoause of the "instructional
possibilities" of the resulting "acute taste of real hard­
The calling of an extra session for August 7, not
to revise the tariff but to repeal the Sherman Silver Pur­
chase Act, was sufficient proof for the Democratic farmer
in Missouri that the Populist had been right in their
charges that Cleveland was the "pet of the National banks"
and "a known friend of the money power."
The subsequent
use of the national patronage and Administration's influ64
enoe to secure the repeal made them positive.
(Footnote continued from page 241.) expressed this
opinion. Stone in his notification speech to Bryan,
St. Louis Republic. August 13, 1896, described the
reactions of the liberals in 1893. Altgeld did the
the same in a speech reported in the St. Louis Repub­
lic, November 12, 1894; Harry Barnard. "Eagle Forgot­
ten," The Life of John Peter Altgeld (New York, 1938),
Nevins, 523-526, 537-348. Professor Nevins lists
some of the groups which appealed to Cleveland for
repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act and de­
scribes the Eastern attitude toward the hardship pro­
duced in the West by the panic.
Those Missouri Democrats, who had acquiesced in the
nomination of Cleveland or had "been convinced that the
McKinley tariff was the chief cause of the financial dis­
tress, felt betrayed and angry.
The "Arkansas Preacher's
Prayer"^reprinted in the editorial columns of a Democratic
newspaper, which had a reputation for being conservative,
probably^expressed their feelings.
All obstinate and nearly all fat Cleveland,
our great hunehbellied political god, again we
bow before thee in humble submission. Each day
as this world, which was made for thee, is hurled
through ethereal space faster than a hungry Demo­
crat can run for office, we have an additional
proof of thy greatness. We have read thy message,
we have gulped it down, and now we lie stretched
out in the sun of political hope, like a snake
that has swallowed a frog, waiting for it to di­
gest. Yes, almighty and powerful father, there
is a panic throughout the land. It is spreading
disaster everywhere. It has knocked the everlast­
ing stuffing out:of of our pants, and
left its imprint all over our clothesv and the
clothes of our children ••••
This was all very well in the summer time,
but we would thank thee most adored political
father, if thou would stop the panic before the
keen blasts of winter have a chance to peep into
the windows of our pants. We know, most respected
and honored father, that thou art wise, or how
couldst know that we had a panic? In thy; great
wisdom thou hast found it out before it was three
months old, and straightway thou throwest down thy
fishing pole, kickest over thy bait can, and setteth to work to snatch the panic baldheaded. We
thank thee, most kind father, for even mentioning
us in thy - message. We thank thee for thy de­
sire and thy/ efforts to give us a good dollar.
We implore thee to make it better than anybody's
dollar. The more it will buy the better it is.
Oh, great and mighty Cleveland, if thou couldst
make it buy ten bushels of wheat end 50 pounds of
cotton, we know it would be good. When we get
hold of one we would know how to appreciate it.
•There is no excellence without great labor.1
The more labor it takes to get a dollar the
more excellent it is. Mighty master make it
goody squeeze into it more labor, more hogs(
more cattle, and more grain; it will oost thee
nothing. We will furnish more labor, more hogs,
more oattle, and more grain. Squeeze them into
the dollar. It will mean more money in thy:
pocket and more food in th<y paunch. We thank
thee master, for thy friendly interest in be­
half of the hankers. Make their paths easy and
their burdens light. Increase the value of their
dollar and the number of their mortgages. Give
them gold and demolish silver with the lightning
of thy wrath. Help us, oh mighty Cleveland, to
love our enemies— all but the Populists. If
England smites us on one cheek let us turn unto
her the other. If she asks us for our coat, let.
us give unto her our cloak also. But whatever
thou doest, most excellent, adored and mighty
master, don't fail to help us put the Populists
to flight. They press us sorely on every side.
They laugh Us to scorn and make faces at us in
public places. Lawt campaign we accused them
of deception and lying, and now they have proved
by the words of thy own mouth, adored master,
that we have lied. It is written, *0h that mine
enemy might write a book', but they have written
too many books. And they Increase not only in
knowledge but in numbers. The political midwives
which thou hast sent out to slay all the new b o m
babies are either hoodooed or do not arrive in
time. And their increase is a sore vexation. Be­
sides, no people in all the world have such wonder­
ful memories. They have recorded every promise
we have ever made. They point to the McKinley
bill as a 'culminating atrocity', remind us of our
promise to repeal it, and exclaim, aha! They re­
mind us of our 'chanoe* and call our attention to
you as you Buzzard Bay or shoot snipe at
Hogg Island. They recall the sacred promise of
better times, and then point to the numerous
failures, the shutting down of factories and mines,
the thousands of unemployed, the low price of
wheat and cotton, cattle and hogs, and the general
scarcity of money. They sorely perplex us and we
know not whither to turn. Oh, most excellent mas­
ter, is there no 'balm In Gilead', is there no
place where we can turn and hide our shame? If we
had an office we could stand it without complaint.
We could eat our pie and let the heathen rage.
We could buy more with our salary and scoop in
the property while it was low. But the panic
which- it hath pleased thy greatness to create
has hit us hard as hard as it has the Populists.
Our houses and our vineyards are mortgaged and
our daughters are given in bondage. Our cred­
itors dun us and we have not wherewith to ap­
pease our wants.
We know there is something the matter, but
we do not try to know what it is, for it would
be treason to thee and our great party. Thy
ways, oh mighty Cleveland, are past finding out
but we trust thee. Take us under the wing of
thy protection. Do with us as seemeth best in
thy sight. If the bankers need our property,
give it to them. But this we ask of thee, de­
liver us from the Populists. Issue an edict
compelling the men we elected to office to take
the stump and put them to flight. In vain have
we appealed to them but they eat their pie and
wink at each other. They smell the battle afar
off. Bring out the whip of thy wrath, most
worshipful master, and scourge their cowardly
legs till they stand on a public platform and
tell them that they are Democrats whether they
can give a reason or not. Again we ask thee to
take us under the wing of thy oare. Deliver
us from the Populists, help us bear up under the
panic, it will encourage our political faith;
feed our political prejudice with the daily bread
of misrepresentation, deliver us from the Popu­
lists, help us to hate the Republicans, and thine
shall be the praise— if the Populists don*t get
If the repeal of the Silver Purchase Act aroused the
wrath of the liberal Democrats, the sale of bonds in
February, 1894 to bolster the gold reserve, and the veto
of Bland*s bill for coining the silver seignidrage in
Uarch, drove them to a frenzy.
Francis, who no doubt had
seen the signs of revolt in the party, had gone to Wash­
ington in February to try to arrange a reconciliation
Columbia Missouri Statesman. January 5, 1894._______
between Cleveland and the two Missouri senators.
He latei
wrote to Cleveland asking him to sign the Siegniorage bill
to bring peaoe between the two factions, but to no avail?6
The statements of Bland and Vest to the St. Louis Republic
that Cleveland would have signed the bill if he had been
given authority to sell bonds to buy gold to secure the
silver, caused added anger among the liberal Democrats
who opposed the sale of bonds in time of peaoe.
Stone, who had an opportunity to observe the reactions of
the people at home, said that the Democrats "are aroused
as I have never seen them before."
There was reason to be aroused.
The state central
committee had met in the latter part of February and an­
nounced that the state nominating convention would meet
at Kansas City on May 15.
The Lieutenant-governor, John
B. O'Meara:, sensed that the convention had been called
earlier than usual so that opposition to the indorsement
of the National Administration might not develop.
oaused a storm of protest which the St. Louis Republic
sought to allay by publishing the opinion of several of
the committee who said that the only motive was to try to
heal the threatening split in the party ranks.
Among the
Columbia Missouri Statesman, February 2, 1894
Nevins, eOT-Stf!.”’ Cleveland denied the Missouri sena­
tors the privilege of naming appointees to federal
offices in Missouri.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, March 30, April 2,
1884._____________________ __________ _________________
-847letters was one from Governor Stone who did not think the
convention would condemn the actions of the representa­
tives and senators by indorsing Cleveland and the "goldbugs."
He thought the moneyed interests and corporations
would try to commit the party to the Eastern viewpoint on
money, but advised the liberals to be inoffensive in their
demands for free silver*
Stone's conciliatory letter was written thirteen days
before the veto of the Seigniorage bill.
Ha. was probably
somewhat aroused himself when he reported on April 2 that
the Democrats "are aroused as I have never seen them be­
fore. "
He had ohanged his mind about inoffensiveness and
now thought the "Democrats had better be right than to win
another election*"
In him the liberals in Missouri had
found a leader whose skill in party politics was equal to
that of Francis*
He was ready to cast all compromise
aside and fight for principle.
Bland had probably been ready to Join issues in 1891*
He had criticized Cleveland severely in July, 1893, for
calling an extra session to deal with the tariff question
rather than the money problem, and as early in the session
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, February 27,
March 13. and 16, 1894. Ail of the representatives
had followed the example of the two senators in op­
posing Cleveland's measure.
Ibid*, March 13 and 16, April 2, 1894. The silver
press all over the country was likewise aroused.
Nevlns, 602.
-248as August 11, had made his "Parting of the Ways" speech.70
His long record on free silver endeared him to the Mis­
sourians, and he began to take a more active part in state
politics than he had ever taken before, but he lacked
energy, resourcefulness and a natural flare for politics.
Stone had all these qualities and some to spare.
He also
had the advantage of having control of the state patronage
and being in Missouri instead of in Washington,
Whether or not a Francis controlled state central
committee had called a snap convention in order to secure
an indorsement for the Rational Administration and to
sound the keynote for other conventions, every one knew
that the most important business of the convention would
not be the nomination of state officers for the fall
Circumstances, if not the lively interest
in national issues or the now open split in the party,
would have forced the issue.
It had been the common prac­
tice so long for platforms to boast of the good works of
its officers that such a statement could not well be omit­
ted, and the Missouri Democrats were faced with an
California Newspaper, July 6, 1893, reporting a
speech made by Bland; Nevins, 651,
The St., Louis Globe-Democrat, always ready to foment
trouble eTiming the Democrats, reported this on
March 25 and 26, 1894. Stone was reported as saying
that the early convention was to secure indorsement
of the administration forces. St. Joseph Herald,
March 27, 1894.
Impossible situation*
If Cleveland was indorsed the con­
gressmen and senators would be automatically denounced or
vice versa.
All but one of Missouri’s delegation to Washington,
Seth W. Cobb, congressman from Francis’s district in St.
Louis, had aligned themselves against the President.
President had countered by withholding patronage from all
but Cobb, who according to report dispensed all the fed72
eral patronage in the state.
Senators Cockrell and Vest
used the opportunity to increase their following.
one who appealed to them for an appointment was led to be73
lieve that he would have been the favored applicant.
the representatives followed the same plan, Cleveland’s
withholding of the patronage might prove to be a boomer­
St. Louis Globe-Democrat. March 24, 1894; St. Louis
(semiweekly) kepubllc. February 13, 1894; letter by
Cockrell; St. louls Kepubllc. July 17, 1896; William
Vincent Byars, An American 6ommoner. The Life and
Times of RicharT~Parks feland (Columbia, Missouri,
St. Louis Republic, February 29, 1896. The Republic
made this statement at a time when the editorial
policy was unfriendly toward Vest and Cockrell. The
statement was probably made to create doubt in the
minds of their supporters. For this reason some
doubt may be cast upon the truth of the statement,
but since the possibility of winning supporters by
this method is so evident, it seems logical to con­
clude that Vest and Cockrell might have used the
The St. Louis Republic sent inquiries in April, 1884,
to the Missouri congressmen and some of the Democratic
editors in the state to determine the prevailing opinion
as to what should be done at the coming convention.
the congressmen who answered, except Bland, Cobb, and
U. S. Hall, avoided a direct answer, but expressed the
opinion that a majority of the people wanted free silver.
Bland counseled that there be no compromise, while Cobb
and Hall praised Cleveland and his work highly and ad­
vised that he be indorsed.
Of the twenty-five editors,
whose replies were printed, a large majority favored an
indorsement of the congressmen, a few were gold Democrats,
and the others thought that conciliation would be the
wiser policy.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, April 16 and 19,
May 10, 1894. Charles it. Jones, editor of the St.
Louis Republic, had been a free silver advocate and
a supporter of Cleveland in the state convention in
1892. After the veto of the Seigniorage bill he be­
came a severe critic of Cleveland and his followers
in Missouri. He and Francis had a personal encounter
on the streets of St. Louis as a result of his edi­
torial remarks. Francis then bought enough shares in
the St. Louis Republic to return the control of the
Republic to his friend Charles W. Khapp who had been
forced to relinquish it to Jones in 1888. After May,
1893, the Republic became the organ of the conserva­
tives. California Newspaper, March 2 and 30, May 25,
1893; Walter B. Stevens, ^ifEe Tragedy of the St.
Louis Renublic." Missouri Historical Review, XXII
(January* 19^5) * 139-146; Walter "k. "Stevens, "The
New Journalism in Missouri," Missouri Historical Re­
view, XVII (July, 1923), 477; XIX l«fuly, 1926), 6B&;
William Hyde and.Howard L. Conard, editors. Ency­
clopedia of the History of St. Louis, 4 volumes (St.
iLouis, 1835) , III, 1633.
Champ Clark said that the convention which met at Kan­
sas City on May 15, was the "first gun of the campaign of
1896," and the importance with which others considered it
is indicated hy the type of delegates who were present,7®
Bland and U, S. Hall came from Washington; Stone, as a
delegate from Vernon County, lent the prestige of his of­
fice to the silver faction; Francis was the marshal of the
faction which used the power and prestige of the National
Administration; and there was said to be more Democratic
business men present than at any convention since the
Civil War.
A large proportion of the delegates present
were men of "influence and experience in political af76
The convention opened with the spiteful remark of the
Chairman of the state central committee, Charles C* Maffitt of St, Louis, that the convention had not been called
to promote the ambitions of anyone who wanted to be sena77
tor or president.
He was followed by the temporary
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 14, 1894.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, May 15 and 17, 1894; St.
Louis (semiweekly) hepub 11c, May 21, 1894, quoting
the Cincinnati Enquirer. 5?here was much discussion
of Missouri*s stand orTfree silver in other parts of
the country. Appleton*s Annual Cyclopedia, 1894,
495-496. Bland considered the convention of more
than state interest. St. Louis (semiweekly) Repub­
lic, May 17, 1896.
The St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, May 17 and 21,
1894, and the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, May 16 and ivj
o f ,tne^
t h e convention.
oonvention. The
194, give a full account of
hsan started that (Footnote on page 252.)
ohairman, J. McD. Trimble of Kansas City who would one day
be the candidate for governor on the Gold Democratic tick­
He said that the convention had been called to nomi­
nate three candidates for state office and had no reason
to express Itself about national issues.
Governor Stone,
who was elected pexmanent chairman, assured the conven­
tion that he had no ambitions to become senator, that he
Would support Bland for the presidency If Bland wanted the
nomination, and that a majority of Demoorats in any con­
vention might choose to express themselves on any issue.
This interchange of bold statement for inuendo revealed
the assurance of the liberals and the vexation of the con­
servatives who found themselves in the minority.
The resolutions committee, of which Bland was chair­
man and Stone and Francis members, failed to agree for
some time.
Bland demanded a plank supporting free and
unlimited coinage of silver and gold at a ratio at 16 to
Francis wanted to avoid a mention of the ratio, which
had made its entrance as an issue in the Congressional
session of 1893-1894.
He also wanted an indorsement of
the National Administration.
‘When William H. Phelps,
state committeeman from southwest Missouri, told Stone of
(Continued from page 251.) Stone would be a candi­
date for senator against Vest. The election of a
United States senator would coincide with Stone*s
retirement from the governorship. General Morton L.
Hawkins, editor of the St. Louis chronicle, had
the plan of the conservatives to delay action until the
officers were nominated and then to declare the conven­
tion adjourned, Bland was forced to agree to a compromise
in the committee*
This was not enough concession for the conservatives,
who chose to go before the convention with a minority re­
port which was not unfavorable to bimetallism but was
silent on the ratio*
In the debate which followed, Bland
remained uncompromising*
Francis pleaded for a platform
satisfactory to his business constituency, and some of the
silver men indulged the opportunity to talk of Wall Street,
brokers, and 10 per cent bankers.
The minority report
lost, but Francis proposed another substitute the next
day, demanding the free and unlimited coinage of silver
and announcing opposition to legislation that would double
the debt of the farmers.
This lost too, but an amendment
to the Bland report carried by a narrow majority.
money plank finally adopted was probably satisfactory to
no one*
We therefore demand the free bimetallic coinage
of both gold and silver, and the restoration of
Phelps told this story two years later after he had
changed sides and the campaign for delegates to the
national convention of 1896 was in progress* St*
Louis Republic* March 16, 1894.
Platform in full in Official Manual of Missouri*
1895-1896..(Jefferson dlty* 1895), 22^227; AgEleton’s
Annual Cyclopedia. 1894* 495-496.
the bimetallic standard as it existed under our
laws for over eighty years prior to the demoneti­
zation of the standard silver dollar in 1873, and
should it become necessary in order to maintain
the two metals in circulation, to readjust the
ratio, it should be determined whether gold has
risen or silver has fallen, and whether there
should be a change of the gold dollar or of the
silver dollar, or of both, to the end that what­
ever ratio is adopted, the rights of both cred­
itor and debtor shall be preserved alike, having
in view the demands of the people for an ade­
quate circulating medium. We declare that we
are not in favor of gold monometallism or sil­
ver monometallism, but that both should be
coined at such ratio as to maintain the two
metals in circulation.
Although the platform declared for free silver, in­
dorsed Cleveland only for signing the repeal of the fed­
eral election bill, and denounced the interference of the
federal government in state affairs, it cannot be said
that the conservatives were defeated.
They succeeded in
forcing a compromise on the silver plank and avoided an
approval of the work of the representatives and senators
in Congress.
They could muster only 187 1/2 votes out of
533 on the proposition to substitute Francisfs plank for
that of Bland in the convention, but they had lacked only
one vote of defeating Bland’s plank in the resolutions
The control of the party machinery had nearly
been sufficient to circumvent the will of the majority.
Nearly half of the conservative votes came from Kan­
sas City and St. Louis. The remainder came largely
from those counties north of the river, with a
noticeably larger portion from the northwest section
of the state.
Although the Globe-Democrat said that "Populism won
it" and the Cincinnati Enquirer called it "a great victory
for silver," the St. Louis Republic was nearer the truth
when it said that the "Francis-Maffitt interest was not
without laurels."
A known conservative was nominated
for judge of the Supreme Court, and at its regular meeting
in June the state central committee re-elected Maffitt
chairman with but one dissenting vote for Sam B. Cook who
was nominated by Henry W. Salmon, Stone’s campaign manager
in 1892.
Neither Bland nor Stone expressed any serious
dissatisfaction at the time, but Lon V. Stephens said, in
1896, that the friends of free silver recognized the plat­
form as a compromise and immediately began to organize to
defeat the "enemy."
The Populist press seized upon this compromise to win
Democratic votes.
Their cause would have been far better
served had the conservatives been in complete control at
Kansas City, but the platform compromise was a weak spot
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, May 17, 1894; St. Louis
(semiweekly) kepubllc, May 17, 1894; May 21, 1894,
quoting the Cincinnati Enquirer.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, June 4, 1894.
Stephens was state treasurer, 1892-1896,and Governor,
1896-1900. During the latter part of 1895 and the
early part of 1896 he wrote a series of articles
called "Silver Nuggets" which were published in a
number of Democratic weeklies. The above statement
was made in one of these articles. Boonville Weekly
Advertiser, February 28, 1896.
256in the Democratic armor.
A Populist newspaper, which had
said in April that Bland has "as much influence with the
party now in control as the latter ’p ’ in pneumonia,"
boasted in May of the accuracy of its prediction that
Bland would retreat from his "Parting of the Ways"
The Democratic platform was scored for prais­
ing Cleveland, "the 360 pound tool of plutocracy," and
poetry appropriate for the occasion, of which the follow­
ing is a sample, was released for the consumption of con­
servative Democrats.
"If they stop our pensions for us,
They but mean it as a joke;
We should never ask a question,
Leave it all to Darling ’Hoke’.
Let us all stick to our party
(Though there are no reasons why.)
And although w e ’ve been bumboozled,
Let’s be Democrats or die."85
Thus, while the iron was hot, the Populists began to
shape their program to draw more voters to their party in
conformity with plans formulated immediately after the
election of 1892.
California Newspaper, April 19, May 24, 1894.
Ibid., May 24 and 31, 1894, quoting an Exchange.
Letter from Weaver to H. E. Taubeneck, Chairman of
the Populist national committee, hoping that the
program of education would continue so that the move­
ment begun in 1892 could be carried to fruition.
California Newspaper, December 1, 1892; letter of
Leverett Leonard to M. V. Carroll, secretary of Mis­
souri state Populist committee, urging that plans be
laid to secure dissatisfied voters of other parties
in 1894 and bring the Populist movement to a climax
in 1896. California Newspaper, (Continued to page 257.):
At their various conventions the Populists again nom­
inated a group of men for state offices and for Congress
whose political backgrounds were heterogeneous in charac­
ter but most of whom had been affiliated with the third
party for a long time*
0. D. Jones was again nominated
for the supreme court*
T. J. Hendrickson, who had been
elected to the legislature in 1890 on the Union Labor
tioket, was placed on their ticket for railroad commis­
John M. London, who had been the third party
candidate for Congress in 1876, 1878, and 1880, was given
the candidacy for the same place in 1894.
Prank C.
Ritchey, another candidate for Congress, had been a Greenbacker in 1876, a candidate for the St. Louis Court of
Appeals on the Union Labor ticket in 1888, and a candidate
for the same place as a Populist in 1892*
Among the other
congressional nominees were men who had been Democrats or
Republicans, but who had left their parties.
(Continued from page 256.) December 15, 1892i Hicks,
325, 340, says that the Populists expected to get
the dissatisfied from all parties*
Convention held at Kansas City. St. Louis (semi­
weekly) Republic, March 30, 1894; Memphis Farmers
Union, April 157 1894; Official Manual of Missouri,
1591-1892, 365; St. T-ouls Globe-Democrat, November 5,
15947 printed short biographies of eleven Populist
candidates. London was elected in 1880*
258A1 though the third party man in Missouri had ordlna- !
rily worked with the Republicans in the strong democratic
counties, there was a definite aversion to such action
among the older leaders in the group in 1894,
less the local groups in several places continued the old
In a few instances Democratic-Populist fusions
or understandings indicated that the liberal Democrats
and Populists were growing closer together and foreshad­
owed the fusion for President in 1896.
In the thirteenth
congressional district, to the south and west of St.
Louis, the Populists refused to nominate a candidate
against the Democrats; the Buchanan County Populists re­
fused to contest the election of the Democratic nominee
for state senator, C. 3?. Coohran, editor of the St. Joseph
Gazette; and in Greene County, the Democrats and Populists
united their strength to elect the county officers.
Since these fusions were all in sections where the third
party had formerly cooperated with the Republicans, the
change in attitude is more significant.
The Republicans in the campaign that followed used
the shrewdest strategy possible.
Success to the Populists
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, August 23, Septem­
ber 20, October 8.and.29, 18^4; California News­
paper, March 1, October 8, 1894. Champ Clerlcsaid
that he would not make any attacks on the Populists
because they wanted nearly the same things as the
Democrats. St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, Septem­
ber 24, 1894,
meant the election of the Republican ticket, for the Popu­
lists had no hopes of doing more than winning a large
enough block of votes to cause the disintegration of the
Democratic party.
The Democrats, being on the defensive,
were at a disadvantage in the struggle with the Populists.
If the Republicans had made a strenuous campaign, the
Democrats could have taken the offensive against them and
secured the advantage of the keener feeling of partisan*
ship where the stronger enemy was concerned.
ly, the Republicans made an appeal to the wool growers
because wool had been put on the free list in the Wilson
tariff and called on the voters of St. Louis to vote
against the Democrats to keep "this man Stone" from tight89
ening "his grip" on the city.
They worked quietly, how­
ever, and allowed the Democratic and Populist campaigners
the opportunity to attack each other without the disturb­
ing element of a third contender.
They not only had a
chanoe to win by the use of this strategy but they could
also hope that a sharp contest might counteract the tend­
ency toward Democratic-Populist fusion which had mani­
fested itself in some localities.
The leaders of both factions oodperated in the cam­
paign to hold the voters in line.
for defeating the Republicans.
Each felt the necessity
If the voters stayed at
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, September 27, Octo­
ber 29, November 5, 1894; St. Louis Globe-Democrat,
November 5. 1894._______ ____________ ______________
home or deserted to the Populists, the loss could he
charged to the conservatives.
If the congressmen who had
opposed Cleveland were defeated, it could be interpreted
as a repudiation of the liberals.
To give the appearance
of harmony and to submerge the differences in principle,
much of the speaking campaign was conducted by pairs, one
a conservative and the other a liberal.
Francis and Sec­
retary of State Alexander A. Leseur, a moderate liberal,
were scheduled for a speaking tour of the c entral and
northern counties, and other pairs were sent to other sec­
tions of the state.
Vest and Cockrell made conciliatory speeches asking
for Democratic solidarity, explaining that the WilsonGorman tariff was much better than the McKinley tariff,
and asserting that the depression was the fault of the
Republicans and not the Democrats.
Stevenson made a series of talks, as he crossed the state,
telling his hearers of the redeemed Democratic promises,
the good points of the Wilson tariff, and the condition
of the treasury when Cleveland went out of office in 1888
and when he came back in 1892.
same outline in his talks.
Even Stone followed this
He announced that he was going
to nstay with the party” but, like Vest, stated his opposi90
tion to Cleveland on the money issue.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, September 27, Octo­
ber 4, 11, 18, and 25, 1894~. Congressman U. S. Hall
and F. W. Lehman, Wabash attorney and a National
Democrat in 1896. said (Footnote to page 261.)_______
261Stone also brought into the campaign two issues which
were to become planks in the Democratic national platform
of 1896.
During the railroad strike in the summer of 1894
he had worked diligently to avoid any rioting that might
serve as an excuse for the use of federal troops in Mis­
souri as they were being used in Illinois.
During the
campaign he devoted some of his time to the question of
state rights as it was affected by the use of United
States troops in state disorders.
He also declared that
senators should be elected by direct vote so that they
would be more responsible to the people, in this way ex­
pressing his dissatisfaction with the Wilson-Gorman
The Democrats made extended use of their speakers to
supplement their campaign literature and the newspapers.
Stone was scheduled to speak twenty-two times, Vest seven­
teen times, and Cockrell eighteen times in the last month
of the campaign.
Champ Clark was planning to make ninety
speeches after August SO.
Besides all these, the other
congressmen and local speakers were kept busy.
The Populists continued to criticize
the conserva­
tive Democrats and like Stone made use of
the incidents
(Continued from page 260.) afterward that the state
campaign committee forbade discussion of the money
question during the campaign of 1894.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, October 1, 1894.
Ibid.. August SO, October 1, 11, and
15, 1894._______
262of the summer in their campaign.
They were quick to grasp
the reception of Coxey*s army as an indication of the fact
that Cleveland was the representative of class interests.
One of their cartoons showed Cleveland on the portico of
the White House graciously receiving the representatives
of plutocracy, the design on whose clothing was the dollar
In a companion picture Cleveland was urging the
United States troops, in the form of a large bulldog, to
harry the representatives of labor off the premises.
The liberal Democrats and the Populists were nearly
together in principle, and in perfect accord in their op­
position to Cleveland and the class of which they thought
he was the advocate and champion.
Under such circum­
stances, the campaign was free of much of the venom of
previous years.
It has already been mentioned that the
Populists in one congressional district did not put a
candidate in the field against the Democrats, but in the
eighth district, Bland*s, they made a serious effort.
Here was a strange situation.
While Bland was in Iowa
supporting James B. Weaver for Congress, a speaking tour
of the eighth district was being made by his Populist
opponent, W. C. Alldredge who, as a delegate to the con­
vention in Chicago in 1880 and in Omaha in 1892, had
California Newspaper, August 16, 1894.
supported Weaver for the presidency.
Upon election day,
however, both Populists and Democrats were disappointed.
The Populist vote had increased but very little and the
Democrats lost the state election for the first time since
Although the Republicans increased their congression­
al delegation from two to five, their representatives in
the General Assembly from five to fifteen in the Senate
and from forty-four to eighty in the House of Representa­
tives, and elected all three of the state officers, the
election of 1894 in Missouri cannot be called a Republican
landslide if the vote in the election is considered.
Republicans had a plurality of 3,267 for state superin­
tendent of schools but lacked 43,780 of having a majority.
The Republican vote was only 1,720 greater than it had
been for state treasurer in 1892 and 6,780 less than it
had been for secretary of state in 1888.
It would be
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, December 6, 1894;
California Newspaper, October 4, 1894. After the
election a Populist leader, John B. Follett, said
that orders were "sent down the line from headquar­
ters" to "beat Bland" even if they must advise their
voters to vote for the Republican candidate. He said
this was done because Bland had consented too easily
to compromise. St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic,
December 6, 1894. Byars, a friend and contemporary
of Bland, says at page 209 that "the financiers" took
advantage of the apathy of the country to go into
Bland »s district in the off year and defeat him by
secret methods. Nevins, 651, says that Cleveland
was "particularly pleased with the defeat of Bland.
Official Manual of Missouri, 1895-1896, 72; 1893-1894
264more accurate to say that the election was won by default
because such large numbers of Democrats protested the re­
peal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act, the veto of the
Seigniorage bill, and the failure to pass a satisfactory
tariff act by staying away from the polls.
To determine the extent of stay-at-home vote in 1894,
the total vote that year for state superintendent of
schools and the total vote for state treasurer in 1892
meets nearly all the requirements for a satisfactory anal­
No local or personal issue was involved in the cam­
paign for either.
Their vote was about the average of the
total vote cast for the other officers and the minor par­
ties supported their respective candidates consistently.
The Populist vote for treasurer in 1892 was 40,960 and
for superintendent of schools in 1894 was 42,251 while the
Prohibitionist vote for these officers was 3,998 in 1892
and 3,532 in 1894.
These differences are so small that
these two parties may be eliminated from the calculation
This reason was given by A. M. Dockery, congressman
from the third district, Governor Stone, Charles H.
Morgan, defeated candidate for Congress, Bland, the
editor of St. Louis Republic, and a number of other
editors whose opinions were printed in the St. Louis
Republic. St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, Novem­
ber IS,' 19, and 22, December 3, 1894. Among other
reasons cited were lack of unified leadership, the
depression, and general apathy. Prom internal ©vl"
dence found in the campaigns of both 1892 and 1894
and the known liberal leanings of the farmers, no
doubt many avoided the painful process of choosing
between party allegiance and principle by staying at
and the Socialist Labor vote of 1,624 in 1894 is but a
small complicating factor.
There had been no Socialist
Labor vote in Missouri in 1892,
Because the Democratic
vote was 6,681 larger and the Republican was 8,700 less
in 1892 than in 1888, there is the probability of a large
percentage of error in concluding that the vote of 1892
is indicative of the strength of the two parties.
The re­
sult will be that the loss in Democratic votes in 1894
will appear too large but it will make the small Republi­
can gain appear more significant.
By comparing the votes in 1892 and 1894 in the table
below it will be noted that the Democratic vote showed a
loss of 41,704, the Republican a gain of 1,720, the Popu­
list a gain of 1,291 and the Prohibitionist a loss of 466.
The total vote in the state was 37,535 less in 1894 than
Votes Cast in Missouri in 1888, 1892, 1894
Union La­
bor and
Secretary of State:
261,301 236,885
State Treasurer:
267,982 228,185
Superintendent of Schools:
226,278 229,905
in 1892,
Discounting all other possible shifts in votes,
a few more than 4,000 Democrats probably voted other tick­
ets but over 37,000 stayed at home, enough to overcome the
Official Manual of Missouri, 1895-1896, 72; 1893
l£8~S-ig?0. 12.
____________ ________
265narrow plurality, of 24,416 in 1888 and nearly enough to
overcome that of 29,797 in 1892.
If the vote in the congressional districts is exam­
ined the same general conclusion, that the Democrats re­
mained away from the polls, can be drawn.
The Democratic
vote was from 1,825 votes in the fourth district, extreme
northwest section, to 4,343 in the fourteenth district,
extreme southeast section, less than it was in 1892.
total vote cast in 1894 was greater than it was in 1892
only in the district in which Bland was defeated by seven­
ty votes.
In this district the Democratic vote was 2,112
less, and the Republican and the Populist votes were
greater by 1,744 and 3,424 respectively.
In the first and
second districts, northeast section, the Republican vote
was less and the Populist vote was more in 1894 than in
1892, thus lending credence to the conclusion that some of
the older Greeribackers in that section had deserted the
Republican party for the Populists.
In the extreme south­
east district, the fourteenth, where the heaviest Demo­
cratic loss was incurred, the Populist vote increased
heavily enough to permit the guess that some of the Demo­
crats cast Populist votes.
Not only was there a large stay-at-home vote in those
sections where the third party had always been strong, the
northeast, northwest, and southwest districts, but also in
those counties which had been overwhelmingly Democratic.
-267in Audrain, Bates, Callaway, Cass, Chariton, clay, Howard,
Monroe, Pike, Randolph, and Saline counties the Democratic
vote of 1894 was from 400 to 1300 less than in 1892.
The protest of nearly 15 per cent of the Democratic
voters, who could not accept the leadership of the con­
servatives, owed much to the training received in the Al­
liance school*
The feeling of class consciousness which
they had acquired in the long period of agitation, educa­
tion, and organization had created in them a new loyalty
which conflicted with their party loyalty.
Their in­
creased interest in platforms of demands had probably
made them more critical of political issues.
They had
been taught that principles instead of partisanship should
determine how they should vote.
On election day they prob­
ably felt that they should vote for their principles but
did not want to vote against their party.
To avoid the
pain of making the decision they stayed at home.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, March 19»
Compare the vote for state treasurer in 1892 with the
vote for state superintendent of schools in 1894.
Official Manual of Missouri, 1895-1894, 46; 1895-
1S9'6, 72.-----------------
Paced with the results of the election of 1894, which
indicated that the Democratic party in Missouri was in
danger of the disintegration for which the Populists
hoped, the leaders of the liberals made plans to seize
control of the party maohinery.
The efforts of the Ad­
ministration at Washington to maintain the gold standard
served to goad them to action.
Only a few days after the
election, November 15, the Secretary of the Treasury ad­
vertised for bids on bonds to sustain the gold reserve.
In his Annual Message in December Cleveland boldly an­
nounced his intention to maintain the gold standard.
January 28, 1895, he sent a special message to Congress
asking for authorization to sell long term 3 per cent
gold bonds which could be sold to national banks which in
turn would issue national bank notes.
Since the liberals
in Congress opposed the sale of bonds in time of peace,
they refused to grant the concession to make these bonds
payable in gold, and Cleveland was forced to make the
famous transaction with J. Pierpont Morgan.
As the liberals of the West and South viewed the
situation, Cleveland was faced with two alternatives.
could pay out silver for which he had a legal right or he
could make use of an old law to sell bonds to maintain the
gold standard.
If he ohose the first alternative the
rapid descent of the prices of their products would be
checked and the depression in farm business brought to an
If he chose the second, they thought the money pow­
ers of the East would profit*
Since Cleveland decided to
sell bonds to maintain the gold standard, the liberals
were sure that the Populists had been right when they said
he was the friend of the money powers*
Whether or not there was any justification for the
view of the South and West, revolt was brewing.1
In Mis­
souri the liberals had watched with dismay while their
President spent so much of his patronage capital to secure
the repeal of the Silver Purchase Act that he could not
force the passage of the tariff their platform had prom­
They were angered when he vetoed the Seigniorage
bill designed to bring them relief*
They had been stung
by the loss of the state election in 1894, and in less
Not a revolt as Cleveland might have expected when in
his speech in March, 1895, before the Presbyterian,
rally in Carnegie Hall, he said that the work of the
churches were needed on the frontier where lawless­
ness, dramshops, and gambling dens, if left unchecked,
"develop into badly regulated municipalities, corrupt
and unsafe territories, and undesirable states" nor
like‘the Paris'Commune which Theodore Roosevelt visu­
alized, but a revolt of liberal Democrats against the
conservative leadership of the party. Allan Neyins,
Grover Cleveland (New York, 1933), 692; St. Louis Re­
public. October 30, 1896*
than one month their President had borrowed money , which
was against their principles, to maintain a gold standard,
which they thought was causing their financial distress.
In the words of Governor Stone, nAs these events passed
before them, one by one in quick succession, and when they
oame to understand their full meaning and effect, resento
ment turned to wrath and protest rose to revolt."
The liberal Democratic leaders in Missouri, who had
already allied themselves with the national protest groups
began to take a more active part after the defeat of 1894.
Bland attended the convention of the Bi-metallic League at
St. Louis in November, 1894, and served on the committee
which prepared the declaration of principles.
Sinoe the
League, which had been sponsoring a program of education
In the interests of free silver since 1889, recommended
the launching of a new party at St. Louis, Bland’s promi­
nent part in the convention aroused much interest in Mis­
Although Bland declared that he would do all his
silver fighting within the Democratic party, Henry W.
Stone in his notification speech to Bryan, St. Louis
Republic. August 13, 1896; see also Bland’s letter to
tHe St. Louis Post-Dispatch reprinted in the Boonville Weekly Advertiser. April 26, 1895; the address
of the
adltors of Missouri to the people
and Stone's address to the conference of editors at
Sedalia, St. Louis Republic, JUly 25, 1895. J^e feel­
ing was general throughout the West. Edward W. Bemls,
"The Discontent of the Parmer." Journal of Political
Economy. I (March, 1893), 193; John D. Hicks, The
Populist Revolt (Minneapolis, 1931), 91.
Salmon and Sam B. Cook, liberal members of the state oentral committee, felt it wise to publish their conviction
that Bland would not bolt.
Stone, during the campaign of 1894, had exposed his
friendliness toward and close connection with the national
In a letter, published in the press, he ex­
pressed his regret at being unable to go to Omaha to speak
for W. J. Bryan, who as early as 1892 was trying to make
free silver a Democratic issue.
In December, 1894, stone
said in a letter to Governor Fishback of Arkansas, who had
made a widely published speech on free silver, "It must
be definitely settled just what democracy means ... we are
passing through a stage of party evolution which, if al­
lowed to run its course, will lead the party entirely away
from its ancient faith."
He was corresponding with Gov­
ernor Altgeld of Illinois early in 1895 about what would
have to be done about the unfriendliness of the national
Hicks. Populist Revolt. 331; Fred E. Haynes, James
Baird Weaver lIowa flity, 1919), 565-366; Appleton*8
!A5h'ual“gycIopedla. 1894. 495; St. Louis (semiweekiy)
Republic. beoemEer 5, 1894.
St. Louis (semiweekly) Bepubllo, October 22, 1894. In
this letter Stone said of Bryan, "He stands in the
arena like one destined to conquer." For Bryan*s
activities see Haynes, James Baird Weaver, 348-349;
James A. Barnes, "The Gold Standard Democrats and Par­
ty Conflict." Mississippi Valley Historical Review,
XVII (October, I M O J . ' W . -----
St. Louis (semiweekly) Republic, December 10, 1894.
He appointed delegates to and attended the
Non-partisan Silver Conference at Memphis in June anlyasane
of those Democrats who remained after the Conference ad­
journed to lay plans for wresting the control of the nan
tional Democratic party from the conservatives in 1896.
Having been appointed by Bland as a delegate to the Wash­
ington Silver Conference in August, 1895, Stone was made
a member of the committee of five to appoint a national
oommlttee whose duty it would be to secure liberal delegates to the Democratic national convention in 1896.
While the state leaders were working in the national
movement to take charge of the party, and there were oth­
ers besides Bland and Stone, there was a movement among
the liberal Democrats to gain control of the state party
The next regular state convention would not
be held until 1896, but a plan was evolved to call a spe­
cial convention in 1895 to announce the views of the party
Harry Barnard, "Eagle Forgotten." The Life of John
Peter Altgeld (New York, 193b J, 352.
Barnes. Mississippi Valley Historical Review, XVII
(Q f t * n w 7 1 5 ^ , fe9»4SC'- Boonvllle W e e H F Advertlser,
June 7, 1895; California Newspaper, July 4, 1895.
Bland was authorized to appoint delegates to the Con­
ference at a special convention held at Pertle Springs
one mile south of Warrensburg, in August, 1895. See
below and Boonvllle Weekly Advertiser, August 16,
1895. The organization set up in Washington became
known as the "Senatorial Clique" at the Democratic
convention at Chicago in 1896.
273on the money question.
In order to make such an announce­
ment legal and regular, it was necessary to induce the
state central committee to issue the call for the conven­
tion, hut this was not an easy task.
There had been some talk before the state convention
in 1892 that the state central committee should be inoreased by the addition of members elected by the conven.
The liberals thought that they might be able to
secure a majority on the committee in this way.
The prop­
osition was not brought before the convention, however,
and the conservative candidates for committeemen nominated
by the congressional district delegations were confirmed.
Instead of following the usual practice of giving the
chairmanship to the committeeman chosen by the gubernato­
rial candidate to manage the campaign, the committee re9
elected Charles C. Maffitt.
Friotion developed in the course of the canq?aign be­
tween Stone's manager, Henry W. Salmon, and Maffitt, but
for the sake of expediency it was kept quiet.
During the
spring of 1894 rumors, which Stone denied, were circulated
that Stone and his followers were planning to double the
size of the committee at the convention that year.
St. Louis Republic, August 23, 1888; St. Louis (semi­
weekly) Repuplic, July 19 and 29, 1892.
St. Louis Globe-Demoorat» November 7, 1892; St. Louis
(semiweekly) Republic»"April 30, May 10, 1894. Com­
mitteemen were elected for four-year terms at the
state conventions which elected delegates to the na­
tional conventions.
£74there had been any plans made, they failed because the
conservatives were able to avoid an expansion of the com­
mittee at the snap convention in May.
The liberals, who
bad been suspicious of the actions of the conservative
majority in the committee in 1894, were stirred to anger
when their demand for a special convention in 1895 was
The agitation for the oonvention was brought before
the public by Charles H. Jones.
After he had been re­
moved as editor of the St. Louis Republic, he had worked
on the New York World for Joseph Pulitzer, who subse­
quently sold Jones one-sixth interest in the St. Louis
Post-Dispatch. ^
Before the end of his first month as
editor of the Post-Dispatch, he had seized an opportunity
to re-enter the political struggle which had cost him his
position as editor of the St. Louis Republic in 1893.
Governor Altgeld had Induced the Democratic state commit­
tee of Illinois to call a special convention to announce
the party’s views on the existing national situation.
order to discredit this oonvention and to aid the Adminis­
tration project, centered in Chicago, to keep Illinois,
Indiana, Ohio, and Missouri in the conservative ranks,
Cleveland’s criticism of the convention in a letter to the
Walter B. Stevens, "The New Journalism in Missouri,"
Missouri Historical Review, XIX (July, 1925), 684.
-275Chicago Business Men's Club was given to the press.
Jones announced that "What the American people need
now, more than anything else, is a new Declaration of In­
dependence, " and Immediately sent letters asking leading
Democrats if Missouri ought to follow the lead of Il­
Some answered that the Illinois action was a
mistake, but others thought that suooess in 1896 depended
on such action.
Then began a storm of editorial com­
ment and printed remarks of leaders.
Lon V. Stephens
said, HLet the 'campaign of education' as suggested by
President Cleveland
Cleveland had said,
"Disguise it as you may, the line of battle is drawn be­
tween the forces of safe currency and those of silver
To this Bland retorted, "The people of
the West have nothing to disguise."
To Cleveland's
plea, "It is time to reason together," a Tipton editor
added, "and no longer accept the meaningless platitudes
of conservative leaders."
Barnard, 354; Barnes, Mississippi Valley Historical
Review. XVII (October, 1950), 431.
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, March 1, 1895; Febru­
ary 22, ifiD?r7"qmvfclng the Tavette Democratic Banner.
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, April 26, 1895.
Ibid., May 17, 1895.
Ibid.. April 19, 1895.
Ibid., April 26, 1895.
276Bland*s reply to the editor of the Post-Dispatch
probably expressed the thoughts, attitudes, and disposi­
tion of those Democrats in Missouri who were opposed to
the Cleveland administration.
The fact cannot be ignored or disguised
that Democrats are disorganized, demoralized,
and disgusted on account of the action of the
Administration on the silver question [sic]
on the bond sales to maintain the single gold
standard. The Democratic masses take issue
sharply with Mr. Cleveland on these subjects.
Unless something is done to satisfy the Demo­
cratic masses that the Democratic party in­
tends without equivocation to enter upon the
policy of restoring silver precisely where it
was, with all the rights it had at our mints
at the time of the passage of the demonetization
aot of 1873, the party is liable to disorganiza­
tion and disintegration^
If this great party will take up the ques­
tion in good faith ... take it up immediately
... the whole opposition to the single gold
standard will naturally rally to the support
of the Democratic party and give it victory
in 1896 ....
If the State Central Committee refuses
to call a convention, the next best thing is
for the county committees to call conventions
in their respective counties for an expression
of Democrats on this subject. A state conven­
tion might thus result from a call by the
masses of the people in various counties •«••
The Democratic party Is the party of the peo­
ple and the masses of the party should bave.g
the right to set it right on this question.
The scene next shifted to Jefferson City where the
General Assembly was In speoial session.
On May 1, at a
Democratic caucus, a resolution favoring free silver at
a ratio of 16 to 1 was adopted.
Governor Stone had sent a
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, April 26, 1895.
-277latter to be read to the members.
He suggested that a
strong expression from them would be an aid to the cause
and would strengthen the hands of the Democrats in Illi­
On the next evening Stone and Sam B. Cook attended
a second oauous*
In a speech Stone asserted, "If I were
a member of the central committee, I would call a conven19
tion tomorrow*"
Cook, a liberal member of the commit­
tee, was sure that a oonvention would be called if enough
pressure was brought to bear*
At this session the Demo­
cratic legislators seemed to understand what Stone meant
in his letter, and adopted a resolution asking the state
oentral committee to call a special convention.
Sinoe the committee ignored the resolution, a move­
ment was begun to secure a convention according to the
plan suggested by Bland*
J* W. Farris, county chairman
of Laclede County and a friend and admirer of Bland, cir­
culated a petition for a state oonvention.
Forty county
chairmen, many of whom had previously consulted their com­
mitteemen or mass meetings, had signed the petition before
May 31.
Nevertheless the committee voted ten to five to
reject it at their regular meeting on June 1.
continued his work until he had demands from a majority
of the counties, and then announced that he would invite
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, May 3 and 17, 1895,
gives an account of the caucuses. Appleton1s Annual
Cyclopedia. 1895. 500.
-278the oounty chairmen to a conference to issue the call for
a convention.
In a last effort to force the state commit­
tee to act, twenty oounty chairmen met at the Planters
House in St*
Louis and petitioned Maffitt to submit the
proposition to the state committeemen.
Enough pressure
had been applied to the committeemen to make the liberals
believe the decision would be different from that of
June 1*
The problem now was to force Maffitt to assemble
the committee.
Maffitt promised to grant the wish, pro­
vided a majority of the oounty chairmen petitioned him
after having consulted their committeemen or mass meetings
of Democrats.
After quibbling as to whether he should receive the
petitions through a committee appointed for the purpose by
the Planters House Conference, or whether the petitions
should come directly to him, and after a heated exchange
of letters with Harris, Maffitt called a committee meeting.
At the meeting on July 15 only one question proved
St. Louis Republic. May 31, June 2, 21, and 26, 1895;
St. Louis Grlohe-Democrat, June 20 and 21, 1895; Cali­
fornia Newspaper» June 27. 1895. While these moves
to secure tne convention were in progress, Bland was
lecturing in Colorado. He had returned an expensive
silver service sent to him by leading citizens of
Colorado because of the implications that might be
placed on its acceptance, but he had agreed to make a
lecture tour of the state for which it was said he
would be well paid. Boonville Weekly Advertiser,
February 22, 1895, quoting the St. Louis Globe-Demqorat.
St. Louis Republio. June 29 and 30, July 2,_31_4, 5,
and 6, 1895; California Newspaper. July 4, 1895.
troublesome, "When shall the convention be held?"
in the
one and one-half hours allowed to each side to present
arguments, the conservatives demanded time to present
their oase to the voters.
The liberals were quite frank
in saying that they feared the national Administration
would exert itself to win Missouri, since the expression
of the convention would be a combination of South and West
and therefore more important than any other state.
said that since Secretary of the Treasury Carlisle had
helped the conservatives to win in the Kentucky conven­
tion, both he and Cleveland might come to Missouri if the
convention was delayed*
They also expressed their fear
about what the railroad corporations and Rothschilds might
The committeemen granted the wishes of the liberals
and ordered the delegates to assemble at Fertle Springs
on August 6.
The Missouri voters had been receiving their share of
the "tons of books and acres of newspapers" being produced
by each side in the national campaign for supporters.
St. Louis Republic. July 15 and 16, 1895; California
Newspaper. W SE, 1895. Cleveland, at this time
was concentrating on the solid South and using the
patronage to keep it from falling into the hands of
the liberals* Barnard, 354; Nevins, 683. At the
Kentucky convention only a short time before, the
conservatives had been able to defeat the supporters
of free silver.
Trumbull White. Silver and Gold or Both Sides of the
Shield (Publishers tfnion, lSS5T,1>.
-280Aside from the national program the local factions were
making efforts of their own.
While the agitation for the
speoial convention had been in progress, a Sound Money
Club was organized in St. Louis.
Plans were laid to form
looal clubs over the state to serve as nuclei around which
the supporters of sound money could collect, and as agen­
cies to distribute the literature of the organization.
The Sound Money Club had furnished the speakers who pre­
sented the conservative argument before the state commit­
tee to delay the special convention and the officers later
instructed the members to ignore all party activities
leading up to it.
The leaders in the Sound Money Club de­
clared that it was their intention to work for control of
the national convention.
The liberals used the local party organizations and
most of the Democratic newspapers to place their arguments
before the people.
One editor surveyed the fifty ex­
changes which came to his desk from central Missouri and
found that 80 per cent of them were for free silver.
During the summer of 1895 plans were made and executed to
secure method rather than chaos in their work.
editors met in conference at Sedalia on July 23 to formu­
late plans for correlating their editorial policies.
24* St. Louis Republic, JUly 6, 14, 17, 22, and 25, 1895.
25. Boonville Weekly Advertiser, May 31, 1895.
-281issued an address to the people of the state, which
served primarily as a syllabus for the course of study
which they immediately inaugurated.
This conference also served as a sounding board for
speeches by
Governor Stone, Senator Cockrell, and Bland.
Stone*s speech was a warning of the danger in the machine
being built by Carlisle and his crowd to crush Missouri
He read Cleveland and the conservatives out
of the party.
Cockrell made a conciliatory speech but
oalled attention to the dangerous and serious problems
which faced the Democrats.
Bland used the occasion to
answer Carlisle's arguments for a currency based on gold.
The appearance of Bland, Cockrell, and Stone before
a small conference of editors indicated that the liberals
in Missouri intended to capitalize the publicity value of
the offioes held by their leaders.
The oonvention at
Pertle Springs also served to give liberal ideas a wide
Boonville Weekly Advertiser. May 3, July 5 ;and 12,
1895; St. fouls Republic!''July 24, 1895; California
Newspaper, August l, 1&$5 •
st^ Louis Republic. July 24, 1895. Senator Vest, who
had been oareTuTTn his expressions about the conven­
tion, had departed for Carlsbad a few days before
this meeting. It was said that he knew when to put
the Atlantic Ocean between himself and a Democratic
convention. Boonville Weekly Advertiser, June 28,
1895, quoting the Post-Dlspaich; St.. Louis Republic,
June 26, 1895; St - Loul s Globe-Dempcrat, August 6,
1895; California Newspaper. July 25, i»95, quoting
the Laclede CountyHsentinel.
The newspapers gave it generous space, the
issues were discussed in the looal conventions which
elected the delegates, and the 500 local leaders who at­
tended went baok to their constituents with renewed zeal.
The oonvention, to which all but seven counties sent
delegates, needed to solve only one real problem when it
met at Pertle Springs on August 6, 1895.
Sinoe the con­
servatives had either ignored it or were defeated looally,
every one knew what the declaration on the money problem
would be*
There was, however, a division of opinion as
to what should be done in order to secure an early oonven­
tion in 1896*
This problem, of course, Involved the ques­
tion of finding some means of controlling the state cen­
tral committee.
Several newspapers during July had advocated that
Maffitt be ousted.
Others felt that meddling with the
committee would only serve to embitter the conservatives
and make it more difficult to win some of their wavering
the party.
Bland wanted to oust the old committee com­
He said, "It is time we were taking charge of
If we don’t we will have the same state of
affair8 next year that we had this.
We want no Kentucky
The St. Louis Republic, August 7, 1895, and the St.
Louis Globe-Democrat» August 7, 1895, reported the
convention in detail; California Newspaper, August IS*
The counties which sent no delegates were:
Andrew, Butler, Pemiscot, Ripley, Stone, Taney, and
business in Missouri."
Senator Cockrell insisted upon
He contended that resolution n a m ^ e the date of
a state convention to select delegates to the national
oonvention was all that was necessary.
of "intrigue" in the matter.
Stone was accused
It was said that he managed
to have Cooper and Pettis counties pass resolutions asking
for a new committee and then ordered one of his henchmen
to oppose the resolutions.
Thus with a friend in the ene­
my camp, a compromise might be worked out to increase the
number of members on the committee so that the liberals
would have a majority#
The problem was finally solved by. the addition of
nineteen new members and the adoption of a set of resolu­
tions affecting state committee procedure.
The convention
elected four committeemen at large and confirmed the elec­
tion of one nominated by eaoh of the congressional dis­
trict delegations.
The chairman of the state central com­
mittee was shorn of some of his power by making it manda­
tory for him to call a meeting upon the request of three
St. Louis Republic. August 5, 1895. Secretary of the
Treasury Carlisle had made a speaking tour in Ken­
tucky during the oampaign to elect delegates to the
regular state nominating convention. The important
issue had been the question of free silver. Since a
majority of the delegates sent to the convention had
been conservatives, Kentucky had declared in favor of
sound money, a few weeks before the Missouri conven­
Ibid.. July 14, August 5, 1895.
of the members*
If he failed to call the meeting within
a week, a majority of the committee could oall one that
would possess all the authority of one assembled at the
oall of the chairman*
To make doubly sure that the 1896
convention should be early, a resolution was passed re­
quiring the state central committee to call a convention
to be held at St. Louis before April 15*
After the adjournment at Pertle Springs there was
some question as to whether the state central committee
was bound by the actions of the speoial convention.
oonservatives were undecided about the proper course to
Some wanted to ignore the newly elected commit­
teemen; Maffitt was hesitant; but the editor of the Kansas
City Times and John E. Carroll, a conservative member of
the committee, urged that the new members be recognized.
When the new members were added to the committee in Janu­
ary, 1896, the work of the convention at Pertle Springs
was complete; the liberals controlled the state party
This oonvention, over which Bland presided as both
temporary and permanent chairman, had several earmarks of
a Populist meeting*
Bands met incoming delegates and ac­
companied them to their hotels along streets appropriately
St. Louis Republic, August 7, 17, and 18, 1895; Janu­
ary 25, 1856; Boonville Weekly Advertiser, Novem­
ber 22, 1895; September 13, 1895, Stephens in Silver
Nuggets'* quoting the Kansas City World.
Parodies on the condition of the country and
critical of the Rational Administration were sung*
who eared to do so were given the opportunity to display
their oratorical skill.
grip every one.
A camp meeting fervor seemed to
There was also some Populism in the
The unlimited coinage of both silver and gold at the
ratio of 16 to 1 was demanded*
The other plaxte were nega­
tively stated, and suggested the criticism which the oon­
vention felt was due the National Administration.
oonvention was opposed to replacing a money based on met­
al with currency issued by a corporation, surrendering
the option of receiving either gold or silver to bond­
holders, issuing bonds in time of peace, and placing the
treasury under the control of a "syndicate of bankers"
who used the opportunity to make a large profit.
A keen interest in the liberals * efforts to dominate
the party in other states was disclosed at the convention.
Bland, in a speech, praised the work of Illinois in tak­
ing the lead in the "restoration of free coinage."
resolution of appreciation was sent to Senator Blackburn
of Kentucky for his strenuous though unsuccessful efforts
to carry Kentucky for the liberals.
The news of what
Missouri had done was sent in reply to a telegram from
St. Louis Republic, August 7, 1895; Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia. 1895, 500.
-286the Texas convention which was in session at the same
The Mississippi liberal leaders were probably in­
formed about the work at Pertle Springs, because the reso­
lutions which they adopted the next day were almost iden­
tical to those formulated by the Missouri convention.33
The Pertle Springs oonvention did not end the cam­
paign of education, but served rather as the starting
point of a more intensive one.
The revewed energy of the
Democratic press is indicated by the use of "Silver Nug­
gets," a weekly article which State Treasurer Lon V.
Stephens began to write in August, 1895.
Prom sixty to
eighty newspapers printed "Silver Nuggets" until the close
of the county primaries and conventions which set the
machinery in motion to select the national candidates in
After it became known that the Missouri conven­
tion would be among the first to choose delegates to the
national convention, such national leaders in the liberal
movement as W. J. Bryan, J. S. Coxey, Benjamin Tillman,
W. H. Harvey, and Governor Boles of Iowa, came to Missouri
to aid the oause.
St. Louis Republic, August 8, 1895; Nevins, 682,
tells of the national movement.
Stephens* letter to his leaders in Boonville Weekljr
Advertiser, April 10, 1895; St. Louis Republic,
April 12, 1896.
St. Louis Republic, March 6 and 21, April 7 and 14,
1896; Boonville Weekly Advertiser, April 17, 1896.
287The conservatives likewise were busy,
in the fall of
1895 they were flooding the state with literature and
trying to induce Democratic editors to accept sound money
supplements or plates of "gold literature" for their news36
Francis issued a statement in January, 1896,
designed to help make Cleveland's and Carlisle's sale of
bonds to the public successful.
He said enough gold was
held by "pessimists and alarmists'*to make the sale "ten
times over" and hinted that they must not let the sale of
bonds to the public fail.
He suggested that a failure
of the Administration plan would lend strength to the
liberals' argument that gold could be "cornered."
February, 300 sound money Democrats of Missouri met in
conference at St. Louis.
The central theme of the speak­
ers was that the conservatives would not be read out of
the party and would insist on being heard.
They advocated
bimetallism instead of the single gold standard, but were
opposed to the free coinage of silver at a ratio of 16 to
36. Boonville Weekly Advertiser. December6, 1895; Clin­
ton WeeklyHbemocrat, August* 15, 1895.
St. Louis Republic, January 11, 1896.The supply of
gold in the treasury had become so much depleted
again that it was necessary to replenish it if the
gold standard was to be maintained. President Cleve­
land and Secretary of the Treasury Carlisle decided
to offer the bonds to the public instead of working
through the syndicate of bankers as they had a year
St. Louis Republic, February 23, March 1, 1896; St.
Louis Globe-Democrat, March 1, 1896._____ ___________
-288In answer to U. S. Hall's claim that the fanners were
sympathetic toward the conservatives, a Populist newspaper
said there was not a "bonafide farmer" at the meeting and
that Francis, "the millionaire grain gambler was the '
Alpha and Omega of that little farce.”
A liberal editor
warned that the conservative opposition to the ratio of
16 to 1 was only the "wooden horse" in which the gold
standard was concealed.
He said, "They talk of disfran­
chisement but thb only disfranchisement is that they will
not have their way."
There was some justification for the conservatives'
fear that they might be denied a voice in the party coun­
They hoped that they might secure a majority in
some of the congressional district delegations to the state
oonvention and thus be able to nominate some delegates to
the national convention.
To thwart the conservatives'
plan to secure a few representatives in an uninstruoted
delegation from Missouri, Lon V. Stephens had suggested
that the delegates be selected by the state convention.
It had been the practice for the convention to elect four
delegates at large and confirm, without question, those .
California Newspaper, Maroh 12, 1896. Hall, as con­
gressman, had voted with the liberals on the ques­
tions involving free silver until the election of
1894. He then began to support Administration
Sedalia Evening Democrat, March 2, 1896.
-289nominated by the congressional districts.
Stephens* plan
was opposed by the cooler headed liberals at the meeting
of the state oentral oommittee which met at Excelsior
Springs on January 24.
A still more radical suggestion ol
J. W. Parris that the call should be addressed only to
those who favored silver at the ratio of 16 to 1, was not
brought before the committee.
The committeemen elected at Pertle Springs were ad­
mitted to this meeting by the conservative majority of the
old committee.
The date of the state convention was set
for April IS in compliance with the resolutions adopted
at Pertle Springs, but the place of the meeting was
changed from St. Louis to Sedalia at the request of the
new committeemen.
In spite of the fact that the conserva­
tives had yielded gracefully, the liberals continued to
plan to keep conservative delegates from going to the na­
tional convention at Chicago.
In a circular letter to
the liberal leaders in the state on March 2, Governor
Stone insisted that all the Missouri representatives to
the national oonvention should be liberals.
To thwart
the conservatives* plan to secure some of the district
delegates, he argued that since the convention confirmed
nominations it could also reject them.
He warned the
leaders that the conservatives would use the national
patronage, money, and the influence of the metropolitan
St. Louis Republic. January 24 and 26, 1896.
-290newspapers to secure control of the county conventions.42
Stone's assumption of the active leadership in the
drive to secure liberal delegates to the state convention
brought down upon his head a shower of abuse and accusa­
tions from the St* Louis Republic.
He was accused of be­
ing a bolter in I860, of being a machine boss, and of
using the patronage to secure supporters for his side.
The worst abuse came as a result of Stone's work with the
old political machine in St. Louis.
The maohine had fol­
lowed Dalton to Stone's support after Dalton's failure to
win the nomination for governor in 1892 and Stone was
willing to use this block of votes which would oppose
Francis on general principles.
In two column splashes on the front page, Stone's
deals with the machine were given to the public*
He was
accused of pardoning criminals at the behest of the ma­
chine, of using "political biackmail" in reorganizing the
city committee, and with acting in a manner unbecoming to
a governor.
His conferences with maohine leaders were
St* Louis Republic, January 25 and 26, March 3, 1896.
Lon Stephens in ^Silver Nuggets" had made the same
suggestion about a method to keep conservatives out
.Of Missouri's delegation in February. Boonville
Weekly Advertiser. February 21, 1896. The Pertle
Springs convention had ordered the state convention
to be held in St. Louis, but the leaders later be­
came worried about the effect of the conservative
environment on liberal delegates and asked that the
place be changed.
-291ealled "dark lantern proceedings" and tlie name "Gum shoe
Bill" was fastened upon him.
The other leaders, Bland,
Vest, State Auditor Seibert, and Secretary of state Leseur
were warned that Stone was a dangerous man, and that
"dvery 16 to 1 Democrat who is bigger than Stone will need
a political bodyguard this summer."
A Populist editor,
however, was probably right when he said that the "adver­
tising” given Stone by the St. Louis Republic increased
his popularity among the Democrats "ten fold."
The liberals were undecided about what plans they
should follow if the conservatives were able to dominate
the national convention.
When Benjamin (Pitchfork Ben)
Tillman made his speech declaring that the South Carolina
delegates would bolt unless their currency plank was
adopted, some in Missouri expressed agreement*
The cool­
er heads, however, knew that it would be detrimental to
their cause to cross this bridge before they came to it.
For the conservatives, there would be an advantage in
forcing an early expression on this point.
The St. Louis Republic, assuming that the conserva­
tives would not bolt because they had said at the Sound
Money Conference that they would not be read out of the
party, sent a questionnaire to test the attitudes of
St. Louis Republic, March 7, 16, 17, 19, 20, 25, and
26, April 1 and 2, 1896.
California Newspaper, April 23, 1896.
Demooratie editors.
To the question, "Is a man who enters
a convention, honor hound to support the nominee?? 155
answers were received.
with an unqualified yes.
Only three said no.
Some answered
But the large majority qualified
their yes, with, "if fairly nominated," "unless the plat­
form is one he cannot support," or "not when the conven45
tion goes contrary to the wishes of the people."
liberals also avoided a direct statement of their plans
at the state oonvention at Sedalia in April, 1896.
liberal on the resolutions committee voted against a
proposition to bind the participants to the nominee and
platform of the national convention.
When the same pro­
posal was made from the floor, the chairman referred it
to the oommittee.
Since an overwhelming majority of the delegates had
been instructed to vote for Vest, Bland, Cockrell, and
Stone for delegates at large, the most serious problem be­
fore the convention was deciding the policy to adopt with
respect to the conservatives.
A heated debate arose over
whether a conservative from St. Louis should .be allowed on
the resolutions committee, but the. counsel of the wiser
was followed and no proscription was made on this occa­
When the congressional districts submitted their
nominations for delegates to Chicago, however, it was a
St. Louis Republic, March 19 and 22, 1896.
Ibid.. April 15, 1896.______________
different matter*
All the districts except the twelfth,
Francis’s district, submitted known liberals.
mitted W. O* Wetmore, a strong liberal, and
It sub­
C. Maffitt.
Maffitt was called before the convention to state his
He declared that he was opposed to free silver at
16 to 1, but would vote in the national convention as he
was instructed.
He added that he would not bolt with the
silverites if the sound money forces were in control at
Chicago nor would he bolt if the silverites were in con47
trol, as he thought they would be.
Such a straight forward and reasonable pronouncement
had its effect, and it appeared for a moment that Maffitt
would be confirmed.
Stone had another idea, however.
On the day before the convention he had said in an inter­
As I view it, it would be the height of
folly to concede any part of the delegation to
the gold standard people. It would be instant­
ly telegraphed all over the country that Missouri
is divided; and news of that kind would fall like
a wet blanket on our friends in other states.
Every man, so far as I know, who has been active­
ly at work organizing for this fight, expects Mis­
souri to set the pace. I have received many let­
ters to that effect from our party leaders in oth­
er states• 8
In a speech in the contention, he agreed that Maffitt
would keep his promise to vote under the unit rule but
would work against the cause.
He praised MaffittJs candor
St. Louis Republic, April 5, 6, and 16, 1896. A de­
tailed account o'f'Vne convention was printed on
April 16.
St. Louis Globe-Pamocrat, April 15, 1896.___________
-294and former work for the party hut said, "Elect Mr. Maffitt
and tomorrow morning you will see the gold papers of the
country gloating over it,"
Maffitt was not confirmed.
The platform adopted was simply an extension of the
one made at Pertle Springs*
Seven new planks were added,
two instructing the delegation to Chicago, one indorsing
Vest for Senator, and four on Issues before the country.
One of these added planks was a demand for a tariff for
revenue only; one oondemned the use of federal troops in
state disorders without authority granted by the state;
and the other two grew out of the United States Supreme
Court deolsions of the year before.
One of these favored
an income tax which the Supreme Court had declared uncon­
stitutional and the other opposed government by injunc­
tion, whioh the liberals thought the Court had upheld in
the Debs oase*
The delegates were instructed to vote as a unit to
secure suoh a platform and to nominate men for president
and vice-president who were in accord with it.
To be sure
that the delegation remained solidly liberal, no delegate
was allowed to name his own alternate.
If neither dele-
St. Louis Republic, April 16, 1896.
The Income Tax oase and the Debs case were decided
on May 20 and May 27, 1895, respectively. The Debs
case had grown out of his imprisonment for contempt
of a federal court injunction during the Pullman
8trike in Chicago*
-295gate nor alternate was present, the delegation was author­
ized to east the vote.
The convention also instructed the
national committeeman, John G> Prather, to use his Influ­
ence to eeoure a liberal temporary chairman, and indorsed
Bland for presidential nominee*
Bland insisted before the convention that the nation­
al platform be given more attention than the candidates
and refused to be a delegate at large if he received an in­
dorsement for the presidency*
Bland's friend and biogra­
pher doubts if Bland truly wanted the nomination, and oth­
ers who knew him disagreed about his feeling*
The Bland
boom had been started by the St. Louis Chroniele as early
as 1893 and was kept alive during 1894 and 1895, but the
sincerity of some of his supporters was questioned during
the early months of 1896*
At the time when it was trying to discredit Stone's
leadership and foment trouble among the liberals, the St.
Louis Republic reported that Stone's followers had pre­
vented the indorsement of Bland at Pertle Springs in
William Vincent Byars, An American Commoner., the Life
and Times of Richard Parks Bland(Columbia, 1900),
T57,''“232'-233;"'BTTTouIFT^emrw^ikly) Republic, Febru­
ary 23, 1894; St. Louis Republic, May 10, l«y5* As
late as May, 1896, two men from-Bland *s home town,
Lebanon, disagreed on the question of Bland's atti­
tude* James Bradshaw thought he wanted the nomina­
tion* J. W* Farris, who led in the agitation for the
Pertle Springs oonvention, explained that Bland was
made a candidate contrary to his own will and advice
but would accept the candidacy if the platform was
right. St* Louis Republic, May 23 and 28, 1896._____
-296August, 1895.
Before the convention in April, 1896, it
said that Stone was known to support Boies of Iowa and
afterwards that the Bland boom was being used just to ex52
cite the people.
Since Bland had insisted that he was
more interested in the platform than in the nomination,
and there seems to be no reason to doubt his sincerity,
he was not disappointed with the national convention at
St. Louis Republic. March 16, April 14 and 26,
May 22, 18W .
Syars, 232-233, says that Bland was
warned of one who was insincere but fails to call
the name. Since Stone was being accused of insin­
cerity by the conservatives, Byars probably had
Stone in mind. Bland did not believe the accusation
at the time, nor did he have cause to do so. Stone
said he favored Bland for the presidency at the
state convention in 1894 and at the Democratic Edi­
tors* Conference in July, 1895, presented the resolutlon of indorsement at Sedalia in 1896, served on
the executive committee which promoted Bland's cause
at other state conventions, and worked with the Mis­
souri delegates at the national convention until
Bland released them. St. Louis Globe-Democrat,
May 16, 17, and 18, 1894; St. Louis {semiweekly) Re­
public. May 17 and 21, 1894; St. Louis Republic,
Jul'y'24, 1895; March 16, April 26, June 12, July 1,
1896. Those who wish to accuse Stone of insincerity
might look for his attitude toward Bryan. Stone had
spoken of him as "one predestined to conquer and
rule" in 1694, was in close touch with Senator James
K. Jones of Arkansas who arranged for Bryan to speak
last in the debate on the platform at Chicago, cor­
responded with Bryan during the early part of the
liberal movement, presented the Bryan telegrams to
the Populist convention at St. Louis, and was Bryan s
trusted adviser during the campaign, since Bryan
had been working under cover for his own nomination
since 1893, it might seem logical to assume that he
had told Stone of his ambitions. Barnard, 352, 359,
368; Charles McDaniel Rosser, The Crusading Cqmmoner (Dallas, 1937), 20, 21, 34-36: St. Louis (semi-
It: IIt i l st-10 BS£?L
-297From the view point of Missouri Democrats, the nature
of the platform was not surprising.
The only new thing on
the money question was the ratio, and it had been suggest­
ed in the state platform of 1894 and in those made at Pertle Springs in August, 1895, and at Sedalia in April,
Opposition to bond issues in time of peace and to
national bank currency had been stated at both Pertle
Springs and Sedalia, and the record of Missouri delega­
tions in Congress for many years had manifested this op­
position before it appeared in the state platforms.
notions of the United States Supreme Court had been criti­
cized and demands made for the limitation of its jurisdic­
tion while the county bond oases were pending during the
The Court had been criticized in the state
platform of 1894 and by the convention which elected the
delegates to Chicago in 1896,
Federal intervention in
state affairs had been opposed in Missouri sinoe recon­
struction days.
Federal interference in elections had
been denounced in the state platforms of 1890, 1892, and
The intervention in state disorders without au­
thority of the state was opposed by Stone during the cam­
paign of 1894 and condemned in the Sedalia platform of
A demand for arbitration of railroad disputes and
the prohibition of trusts and monopolies was not new in
Missouri because such laws had been put on the state stat­
ute books.
-298Tlx© Missouri leaders came home from Chicago victori­
ous, but faced with the problem of winning the eleotion in
They were oertain of opposition from the Repub­
licans, expected it from the third party men,
afraid that the conservative Democrats might bolt.
in his letter to the Post-Dlsnatch relative to calling a
convention in 1895 and in an interview in July, 1895, had
said that some votes might be lost in the large cities
but as many would be gained in the country.
If a large
number of votes were to be won in the country in Missouri,
they must be won from the Populists.
It was estimated
that 80 per cent of the Populists in Missouri had origi­
nally been Democrats, and that at least half of those who
voted the Populist ticket in 1892 and 1894 could be induced to return. 53
There were indications at the National People’s par­
ty conference at St. Louis in December, 1894, that some of
the Populists might join with the free silver advocates.
The majority, however, opposed the policy of fusing with
the silverites, ousted from the national committee those
who did, and formulated plans to continue the program of
agitation, education, and organization.
The Missouri
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, April 26, 1895; St.
Louis Repu'ElTc, July 22, I&95; April 18, 1896.
Hicks. Populist Revolt, 243-244; St. Louis GlobeDemoorat, December 29 and 30, 1894; California News­
paper. February 21, 1895.
299delegates to this conference held a separate meeting wnd
made plans to raise funds and carry forward their share
of the national program.
The Populist press In the state immediately began to
attack the idea of a one-plank platform and to advance
the arguments that free silver would not sufficiently ex­
pand the currency, curb the trusts, nor reduce the cost
of transportation,
When Benjamin Tillman threatened to
bolt the Democratic party, his speeoh was printed and cir­
culated among the members.
In February, 1895, their state
chairman urged them to collect more funds and to organize
in every county, township, and school district.
signs of a break began to appear in the ranks of the par­
ty after the Democratic state convention in April, 1896,
the state chairman, A. Roselle, and the national chair­
man, H, E. Taubeneck, sent warning letters through the
reform press.
They cautioned the members that the liberal
Democrats might be looking for some place to go after the
national convention*
St, Louis Globe-Democrat, December 30, 1894; Cali­
fornia Newspaper, February 13, 20, and 21, 1895;_
April 4, 1595," quoting the Topeka Advocate; April 11,
1895, quoting the Meadville, Pennsylvania, Sledge
Hammer: March 21, 1895, quoting the Iowa Farmers
California Newspaper, April 30, May 7, 18J6; Memphis
Peoples ^
SS l ‘§§6_________ ______
the Democrats were called Middle-of-the-road Popu­
lists, In the interval (Continued to page 500.)
-300After the Democratic convention in Chicago, although
Taubeneck and Rozelle still opposed fusion, the signs for
the Democrats in Missouri were still brighter.
Some pop­
ulist editors began to support Bryan, especially those in
the western part of the state.
John M. London, an old
third party man and one time Greenback congressman from
northeast Missouri, announced that he liked Bryan, and
even such a confirmed third party man as W. C. Alldredge,
editor of the Newspaper, weakened.
These, however,
were but a minority, if the delegation to the Populist na­
tional convention was representative.
The majority, es­
pecially of the confirmed third party men, probably felt
like the editors of the 1,300 reform newspapers in their
meeting the day before the convention:
"As we are a par­
ty of progress and have already educated a majority of the
people up to the acceptance of a portion of our princi58
pies," we should continue our work.
The first trial of strength in the Missouri delega­
tion to the national convention came over the selection
of a delegate to the resolutions committee.
J. Y/eller
Long, an experienced third party man and a Middle-of-theroad advocate, was elected.
On the vote that tested the
(Continued from page 299.) between the Democratic
state and national conventions, the Republic was a
very good Middle-of-the-road organ.
St. Louis Republic. July 15, 16, and 17, 1896. The
Republic became a liberal Democratic newspaper after
the Chicago convention.
St. Louis Republic, July 22, 1896. ________________
-301attitude of the whole convention on the question of fusico,
the election of a permanent chairman, only one Missouri
delegate voted for Senator J. W. Allen, the Bryan candi­
When Bryan’s picture was carried before the con­
vention and state after state banner was carried to it, a
fight broke out in the Missouri delegation, the standard
was torn to bits, and one delegate placed a piece of it
among the state banners.
On the vote which made him the
presidential nominee, Bryan received only six of the thlr59
ty-eight ballots from Missouri.
After the Populist convention, the Democrats could
feel sure of the election of an electoral ticket favorable
to Bryan.
No one seemed to doubt that the fusion could
be arranged, even with the complication caused by the
Populist nomination of a separate candidate for vicepresident, but the actual fusion was not made until Sep­
The Populists were given four of the electors
and it was agreed that Thomas Watson, the Populist vicepresidential nominee, should receive all the ballots, if,
by so doing, he could defeat Sewall, the Democratic
St. Louis Republic, July 24 and 26, 1896. Between
15,000 and le,(K>7T”men seemed to remain consistently
with the third party in Missouri. They probably
constituted the Middle-of-the-road faction, although
there were some individuals from that group who fa­
vored fusion in 1896. Since the leaders were prob­
ably drawn from this faction, the delegates to the
convention might not have represented the opinion of
the 40,000 or more who voted the Populist ticket in
1892 and 1894.
In connection with the trade the Populist com­
mittee adopted a set of resolutions.
All committeemen who
did not agree with the trade were asked to resign, and
Populist editors were informed that they must support the
fusion or be considered enemies.
Although the presidential electors appeared to be
safe, the Democrats still continued to worry about the
candidates for state offices.
Since the next General As­
sembly must elect a United States senator, they were
doubly disturbed about the local contests for state repre­
sentatives and senators.
The Populists had nominated a
full ticket of state officers, and did not seem to be in
a humor to fuse.
The Democrats were in a critical posi­
They had not been able to secure a majority of all
the votes east for governor since 1888,
In 1896 they
could expect that the Republicans would stay with their
party, the Populists would vote for their state candi­
dates, and some of the Democrats would bolt or remain at
A good nomination for governor was necessary if
they expected to carry the state election,
A number of candidates had appeared forthe
torial nomination but, one by one, several had dropped
St. Louis Republic, September 13, 1896.
Ibid., July 31, 1896.
Ibid.. July 23, 1896, gave this criticaldiagnosis
ot the situation which faced the Democrats.
Lon V. Stephens, who had entered the race early, had
almost a majority of instructed delegates by July 28.
After the Chicago convention in the first week of July an
attempt was made to boom Bland for governor with the hope
that he might prove a strong enough candidate to carry the
whole state ticket.
Stephens was willing to withdraw in
Bland’s favor for the good of the party.
He made a trip
to Lebanon about the middle of July to offer his support
to Bland, but Bland was more interested in the nomination
for congressman which he received on August 4.
The state Democratic convention, which met on Au­
gust 5, and at which Stephens was nominated for governor,
was a tame affair when compared with that at Sedalia in
April or at Pertle Springs the year before.
No difficulty
was experienced in nominating any officer or in adopting
a state platform.
One observer noticed that a number
of the habitual delegates had been replaced by new ones.
Some, but not all the conservatives, had remained away
either from necessity or ohoice.
The convention made a
gesture of forgiveness to the conservatives by seleoting
Charles E. Peers for permanent chairman.
He had been an
active leader among the conservatives until the Chicago
St. Louis Republic, July 13, 16, 17, and 18, August 5,
Ibid., August 6, 1896.
vention proceedings.
A full account of the con­
-304convent ion and had then acquiesced in the will of the
That some of the conservatives would not follow the
example of Peers was to be expected.
Cleveland had sug­
gested that there might be a party division as early as
«hine, 1896, at which time he probably was thinking of a
liberal bolt.
His statement indicated the uncompromising
rule-or-ruin attitude of the conservatives.
While Fran­
cis was in Chicago to aid and advise the conservatives in
the convention, he said that some of the Democrats in St.
Louis would vote for McKinley and some would stay at home.
On July 11, Senator Josiah Patterson of Tennessee sug­
gested to Cleveland that a convention be called, a plat­
form of principles adopted, and the sound money Democrats
advised to vote for McKinley.
to the probability of a bolt.
All signs had thus pointed
The Missouri conservatives began their movement to
bolt late in July at a meeting of the Sound Money Club in
St. Louis, which selected a committee to confer with lead­
ers in other states on the question;
They also sent dele­
gates to the Chicago conference of sound money men a few
days later, at which time James 0. Broadhead of St. Louis
was placed on the executive committee to name on National
Barnes. Mississippi Valley Historical Re.vigw* 2V11
(October, 19gOT,
Nevins, 7U0; St. Louis
Republic, July 4, 1896.
305Democrat from each state to serve as a national committee
for the new party.
A few days after the Chicago confer­
ence five hundred letters were mailed to conservatives
ashing their opinion about placing a state ticket in the
Acting upon the answers to the question, an ad­
dress to the people and a call for a convention were soon
All those who wanted to keep the old ideals
or were dissatisfied with the work of the national conven67
tion at Chicago were invited to attend.
Delegates from only half of the counties appeared at
the convention which met in St. Louis on August 26.
seemed to be agreed that a national ticket should be nomi­
nated, but a minority left the convention when the majori­
ty insisted upon choosing candidates for state offices.
One concession was made to the moderates.
Theodore Brace,
who was the liberal candidate for state supreme judge,
was also placed on the conservative ticket.
Even this
could hardly be called a concession, because Brace had
been identified with the conservative element in the par­
ty for a long time but had taken no active part in the
recent campaign.
J. McD. Trimble, a railroad attorney and
life long Democrat of Jaokson County, was nominated for
Nicholas D. Thurmond, an ex-Confederate who had
St. Louis Republic, July 22, 25, and 28, 1896.
Ibid.. August 6 and 9, 1896.
-306often been disappointed as an office seeker, was made the
candidate for attorney-general,
D. H. McIntyre, another
ex-Confederate, who had been elected attorney-general on
the conservative ticket in 1880, was the convention’s
choice for secretary of state.
He had been out of favor
with the liberals in the Democratic party since 1884 and
became a Republican after 1896,
After filling the other
plaoes on the ticket, it was agreed that the fight should
be carried into the legislative districts to defeat Vest
and Bland.
Judging from the speeches before the convention, the
platform adopted, and their expressions during the cam­
paign, the conservatives in Missouri felt the true significiance of the liberal movement to be that depicted by
a cartoon in a Populist newspaper.
The cartoon showed a
Trojan horse, labeled "16 to 1," standing before "Port
Inside were hidden men representing a land
plank, a railroad plank, an anti-monopoly plank, and a
direct legislation plank.
The speakers before the con­
vention gave the money question but little attention and
endeavored to discredit the new principles adopted by the
convention at Chicago with the propagandist’s old ruse of
St. Louis Republic, August 27 and 28, 1896, a detailed
account of tne convention; see also September 19 and
20, October 19, 1896,
California Newspaper, June 18, 1896,
-307name calling.
Populism and Bryanism were made to connote
something silly, and undesirable.
The platform protested the attack on the federal
courts and denounced the criticism heaped on Cleveland
for using federal troops in Illinois.
A protest was made
on the seotipn-against-section nature of the contest and
concluded that "wealth is powerless to oppress; capital
and labor go hand in hand."
A tariff for revenue only was
The constitutional right to establish banks of
issue was asserted, and the "silver manifesto" was de­
clared to be a departure from the policy of the United
States, "declared and established by a Democratic Congress
presided over by a Democratic speaker and signed by a
Democratic president on November 1, 1893."
The men who took leading parts in this bolt were in
the most cases consistent.
They had been bitterly opposed
to all the progressive laws passed since 1884 and several
had successfully opposed such laws before that time.
may have bolted from spite or political disappointment.
Others probably followed because of political debts owed
to Francis.
Henry W. Brockmeyer, E. H. Norton and F. M.
Blaok had been Union Democrats during the War.
James 0.
Broadhead and J. H. Waugh of Columbia had been Whigs.
Fred H. Lehman, one of the leading spirits of the group in
St. Louis, and J. H. Carroll were railroad attorneys.
St. Louis Republic, August 28, 1896.
0, P. Gentry of Clay County was an original Francis man as
well as a railroad promoter and lobbyist.
It has already
been stated that the gubernatorial nominee was a railroad
Willard C. Hall, brother of U. S. Hall, had
been appointed by Francis to the Board of Labor Commis­
John F. Morton, Frank Sebree, W. 0. L. Jewett,
and 3). H. McIntyre, the nominee for secretary of state,
voted against railroad legislation in the first session of
McIntyre and Nicholas D. Thurmond were among those
who oiight be classed as disappointed office seekers.
this group it would probably be most charitable to plaoe
Reverend Pope Yeaman of Boone County, who was a disappoint­
ed candidate for the Democratic nomination for governor in
1692, who denied himself the honor of being a delegate at
large to the convention of the National Democrats at Indi­
anapolis, and who later was on the train which carried
Palmer and Buckner, the conservative nominees for presi­
dent and vice-president, across the state.
As a leader
in the Farmers* Alliance, he must have subscribed to its
program of reforms.
It is incredible that he could swal71
low that camel and then gag at the Chicago platform gnat.
In a letter to State Attorney-General R. F. Walker,
Francis, then Secretary of the Interior, offered
praise to several of these leaders, said he would
come home to vote for Palmer and Buckner, and ridi­
culed the Populist features of the Chicago platform.
St. Louis Republic, October 24, 1896.
309Some editors who had been supporting the conserva­
tives criticized the viciousness of their attack.
Kansas City Star said it was wrong to attack Bryan*s char­
acter, and the St. Louis Republic said after the state
convention of National Democrats:
The Anti-Bryan Democrats have mixed their
currency principles with something which can­
not be embodied in a dignified appeal to the
voters. They have descended to the plane of
revenge and have not even selected their ob­
jects well.72
It was well known in the state that the intention of
the conservatives was to draw enough votes from the Demo­
crats to elect McKinley.
Governor Stone and A. Rozelle,
the Populist Chairman, had said that this was the aim soon
after the convention.
During the campaign Trimble ad­
mitted it, and Palmer in his tour across the state said
at Warrensburg, "If this vast crowd casts its vote for Wil­
liam McKinley on next Tuesday, I shall charge them with
committing no sin."
Before the conservatives had nominated candidates,
the liberals had been worried.
They feared that the
Warrensburg Journal Democrat, August 14, 1896; St.
Louis Republic, August 2d, 1896.
St. Louis Republic, September 4, 1896.
Ibid., November 6, 1896; Warrensburg Journal Democrat,
Barnes, Mississippi
I N U V B I U U e X - 6, 1896.
X O V U e
_ __
■ J
T ■*
cal Review, XVII (October, 1930}, 44<i, gives sub­
stantially the same quotation as this and the same
one given by the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, October 31,
m J tm
310conservatives might vote a straight Republican ticket and
thus defeat the Democrats in the state.
The Republicans
had nominated an excellent group of candidates on July 22,
at the head of which they had placed Robert E. Lewis, exDemocratic prosecuting attorney of Henry County, who had
gone to the Republicans because of the tariff issue in
When the conservatives nominated a state ticket,
the liberal Democratic committee expressed relief, but
Vest’s friends were worried over what might happen in the
election of state representatives and senators.
Since the Democrats needed the Populist votes and
the Populists were anxious to keep a Republican senator
from going to Congress, arrangements were made for local
A special committee of three from each party
studied the vote of 1894 to determine which counties might
be carried with a Democratic-Populist fusion and arranged
the division of candidates.
The trade, completed in Sep­
tember, involved twenty-two representatives in twenty-one
It was so arranged that Democrats supported
Populist candidates in Adair, Cape Girardeau, Cedar, Christain, Linn, Ozark, and Warren counties and Populists sup­
ported Democratic candidates in Andrew, Atchison, Barry,
Dade, Dallas, Holt, Laclede, Lawrence, Newton, Nodaway,
Putnam, St. Clair, and Worth counties.
In Greene County
St. Louis Republic, July 23, 24, and 25, August 27,
the Populists were given one district and the Democrats
the other.
In other counties fusions were worked out by
local groups. 76
The Populist committee wanted to unite the strength
of the two parties to elect the candidates for state of­
fice in October, but Sam B, Cook, Democratic state chair­
man, refused to remove any candidates from the state tick­
A few days later 0. D. Jones, Populist candidate for
governor, announced his withdrawal in favor of Stephens
because of "principle and in order to save the State."
The resignation appeared in the Populist newspapers, the
Populist leaders immediately began to urge their voters
to vote for Stephens, and Jones and Stone thenceforth
campaigned as a pair.
The fusion between the Democrats
and Populists was so close that a Populist editor declared
Stone the greatest man in modern times because he had cap­
tured the machinery of the Democratic party and made the
St. Louis Republic, August 25, September 9, 1896.
The candidates who were subsequently elected in Noda­
way, Dallas, Newton, and Barry counties called them­
selves PoDulists. Official Manual of Missouri, 18971898.(Jefferson City, 1S57T, 505, 5l5. Moniteau and
W a n k l i n counties arranged their own fusions. St.
Louis Republic, July 31, September 1, 1896.
St. Louis Republic, October 9, 20, and 29, 1896; St.
Louis Republic,'"October 23, 1896, quoting the Butler
Free Press, the Butler Democrat, the Lamar Industrial
Tncfex. "and an address from Leverett Leonard to the
union of all reform forces possible.
Like Weaver, the
Missouri Populists were middle-of-the-road advocates, but
they did not intend "to lie down across it so that no one
could get over" them.
To the story of the national campaign of 1896 but lit­
tle needs to be added.
The intensity of feeling, almost
hysteria, which was aroused by the campaign, was indicated
by the eggs thrown at Carlisle in Covington, Kentucky, and
at Bryan in Chicago.
In Missouri the prize must be award­
ed to the conservative Democrats for name-calling and
abuse and to the liberal Democratic audienoes for heckling
and unmannerly conduct.
Although their mental attitude
might be offered in justification, the record still stands,
The Republican and liberal Democratic speakers also re­
sorted to name-calling and insults but no more than had
been the custom with them in previous warmly contested
Besides the other campaign devices, the Democrats
made lavish use of oratory.
Vest was scheduled to make
thirty speeches between September 19 and November 2,
Cockrell twenty-six between September 17 and October 23,
Stone thirteen between September 19 and October 2, and
80 _
others were loaded with schedules as heavy.
Memphis Peoples Messenger, September 17, 1896.
Haynes, James Baird Weaver, 357.
St. Louis Republic, September 15, 1 8 9 6 _____________
-313October 10, the list of appointments of Democratic speak­
ers filled one and one-fourth columns in a large size
newspaper, and these were only the appointments arranged
by the state committee*
It did not include appointments
made by local organizations.
The liberal Democrats* appeal to the German voter
began early in 1895, and continued until the end of the
When the Prussian Diet voted to instruct its
delegates to stand for an international agreement on bi­
metallism in 1895 by a vote of 72 to 38, even weekly news­
papers gave the news space.
Stephens, in "Silver Nuggets,"
called attention to the same thing later in 1895.
thousand copies of one of Senator Vest*s speeches on free
silver were printed in German.
To combat the name-call­
ing technique of both Republicans and National Democrats,
the St. Louis Republic printed a large pioture of Bis­
marck and labeled it "Noch Einer Von Den Anarchisten!"
His statement at the time of the silver vote in 1895 was
printed on the picture:
"The farmers must stand together
and protect themselves from the drones of society who do
nothing but make laws."
On October 5 a facsimile of
St. Louis Republic, October 10, 1896.
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, May 31, September 6,
1895; March 13, 15561
St. Louis Re
of the Anarc
Bismarck's letter on the same subject was printed.84
The Republicans closed their well directed speaking
campaign by sending five special trains out of St. Louis
in as many directions.
At scheduled and advertised stops
their speakers planned to speak to crowds from the rear
of the trains.
At some places they received respectful
hearings, at others they apparently met with organized
heckling and disturbance.
At several places they were
forced to listen to cheers for Byran until time to depart.
In many towns the literature which they passed out was in­
stantly thrown into a bonfire.
At some places they brougUi
on themselves the treatment they received.
The crowd
would listen respectfully until they called Bryan a "Popocrat" and an "anarchist."
At others the speakers probably
answered insult for insult in their exasperation.
actions as related even by a Republican newspaper shows
that the campaigners acted very foolishly, if their aim
was to win votes.
To hold that the campaign of the National Democrats
in Missouri consisted largely of abuse would be neither
fair to them nor the truth.
Much of their speaking cam­
paign was a dignified appeal to reason and a statement of
St. Louis Republic, October 5, 1896.
Ibid.. October 29 and 30, 1896; St. Louis Globe^
bemoorat. October 30, November 1, 1896.
315the principles in which they believed.
They expounded
much the same set of principles as those laid down by
Carlisle in his Covington speech:
(1) Liberty regulated
and protected by law, (2) local self-government and strict
construction of the powers delegated by the states and
people to their agent, (3) no interference with the pri­
vate business of the citizen except so far as may be nec­
essary for the preservation of the public peace, public
health, enforcement of honest contracts, and the mainte­
nance of Just authority of the state and federal govern­
ments, (4) no proscription on account of religious be­
liefs, (5) freedom of speech, press, and right of habeas
corpus, (6) subordination of the military to the civil
authority, (7) no taxation beyond the necessities of gov­
ernment honestly and economically administered, (8) the
nearest possible approach to the freedom of commercial
intercourse both at home and abroad, (9) sound money for
the use of the people so that they may not be cheated out
of their earnings by spurious or depreciated coin and
All of their campaign was not on this high level,
It has already been noted that Cleveland re­
ferred to the liberals as lunatics and that convervative
newspapers in the summer of 1896 criticized the attacks on
Bryan’s character.
In 1895 some Missouri conservatives in
st. Louis Republic. October 23, 1896.
316interviews in New York said that «... nobody in Missouri
but a few backwoodsmen was for free silver."87
in a fit of anger shouted at the crowd who threatened him
"... in your aggregrate intelligence and in the noise of
your numbers you have not brains enough to frighten the
weakest members of our party."
Palmer and Buckner,
the national candidates, exposed their attitude in their
anger at the hecklers in the crowds which met the train
on which they traveled across the state.
Their reception by the crowds at the scheduled stops
was disgraceful because the actions of the crowd which
gathered at the stations seemed to be premeditated and
At one place a large picture of Bryan was plant­
ed near the back of the train from which they spoke.
others they were serenaded with tin horns or forced to
listen to shouts and cheers for Bryan until the train de­
At Paris some wag in the crowd christened them
the "McKinley Aid Society."
Palmer repaid him by shouting
who is for Bryan has to be labeled so that he
will remember who he is for" and Buckner added, "Maybe the
man shouting for Bryan out there can count to 100 without
making a mistake."
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, June 7, 1895.
St. Louis Republic, September 27, 1895.
St. Louis Globe-Democrat, October 31,
Mississippi Valley riisporical Review, XVII (October,
----- ---------
317The attack upon the honesty and the intelligence of
the liberals had become so severe that Governor Stone
answered the charges in August by saying that among the
delegates to the Missouri conventions "were eminent judges
of high courts, United States Senators, Representatives
in Congress, and the Treasurer, and Governor of the
Stephens set out in "Silver Nuggets" in 1895
to show that many Missouri bankers were listed among the
He boasted on November 22 that he could name
a dozen bankers who were for free silver for every one in
St, Louis or St. Joseph who were against it.
By Decerns
her 20 he had heard from and listed seventy-five.
The good effect of rebutting any kind of campaign
charge can only be surmised.
It is doubtful if Stone and
Stephens won many votes by their rebuttal, but it is even
more doubtful if the conservatives won any by vilifica­
The liberals, however, were afraid that they might
lose some votes because of the mob spirit shown when the
conservatives and Republicans made their railroad tours
across the state.
Since such actions on the part of the
liberals could be cited as proof that Bryanism and Popu­
lism were
rebellious doctrines "akin to the Paris Com­
mune," the Democratic newspapers denied the stories told
In his notification speech to Bryan.
Republic, August 13, 1896.
St. Louis
Boonville Weekly Advertiser, November 22 and 29,
December 15 ana 20, 189b.
----------- ----- --------
318by their opponents and offered apologies for their erring
The silver Republican movement did not prosper in
No satisfactory arrangement was ever made on a
state wide scale.
In some places they fused with the
Democrats and the Populists, but on the whole they were
disorganized and undecided until their chairman issued an
address late in October asking them to vote for Bryan to
"rebuke the corruption of the money power" which was "us93
ing coercion in the cities."
Since they had no separate
ticket in the field, no satisfactory estimate of their
numbers can be made from an examination of the total bal­
lots cast in the election.
There were reports of life
long Republicans who were threatening to bolt the party
in the early part of the campaign, especially in southwest
The ballot cast in those
counties seems to
indicate, however, that they voted a straight Republican
ticket on election day.
Warrensburg Journal Democrat, November 6, 1896; St.
Louis RepublTo, frfovember &, 1896.
St. Louis Republic, September 1, October 29, 1896.
Ibid., July 16, 26, 28, 29, and 31, August 2, 8, and
31',' 1896. The Populists had no candidate for gov­
ernor and some evidently voted for the Republican
candidate for governor but for the others on the
Populist ticket. This makes it necessary to compare
the vote of McKinley and the Republican candidate for
one of the other offices to determine if there were
some split ballots cast. Since there was no dissat­
isfaction with the state candidates and the Silver
Republican chairman (Continued on page 519.;________
At the polls the Democratic victory was complete.
Bryan received
a plurality of 58,727 and a majority of
Stephens* majority of 38,158 was the first ma­
Jority given a governor since 1884.
The election of a
Democratic United States senator was assured by majorities
in both houses of the legislature, without having to de­
pend on the ten Populist representatives.
A happier omen for future success could be seen in
the Populist vote.
There were Populist candidates for
all state offices except governor, but the average number
of ballots cast for them was about 18,000 less than in
Since the Democratic vote had shown an increase, it
seemed logical to conclude that many of the ex-Demooratic
Populists had voted a straight Democratic ticket.
table of ballots also seemed to indicate that if the Popu­
list party disappeared, some would go to the Republicans.
from page 318.)
Dade Dallas Laclede
asked only for votes for Bryan, it seems reasonable
to assume that a large percentage would have split
their votes on national and state lines, if there
had been dissaffection in the party. The narrow mar­
gin shown by the table indicates that there were only
an insignificant number of ballots of this type cast
unless Democratic splits of the same kind offset
those of the Republicans. Since it is unlikely that
t.hA nnmh*r n-t* Aetnh would be so nearly equal, it seems
logical to conclude that very few HepuDiicanB youbu
___ x_ i.vt.
w>iata wimora indicated they
won! d . Vot* the votes cited m tne taDxe
Quite likely many of this group had been Republicans be­
fore aligning themselves with the third party.96
The National Democrats made a poor showing.
east only 8,365 votes for Palmer and Buckner, one-third
of which came from St. Louis, Kansas City, and St. Joseph.
Since the Republican gains in these cities were greater
than in other places, some of the conservative Democrats
probably voted the entire Republican ticket.
Official Manual of Missouri, 1697-1898. 11, Bryan was
the Populist canSTdate for president but they had no
candidate for governor. They were instructed to vote
for Stephens by their leaders but since Bryan re­
ceived 12,605 more votes than Stephens, it seems log­
ical to conclude that most of these were cast by
Populists who refused to vote for Stephens. Lewis,
the Republican candidate for governor, received
2,671 more votes than McKinley and there were 9,934
more ballots cast for president than for governor.
It is a co-incidence that the sum of these last two
should exactly account for the difference between the
ballots cast for Bryan and Stephens, but that does
not nullify the conclusion that probably over 2,000
Populists indicated their preference for the Repub­
lican party by voting for Lewis. Every other Repub­
lican candidate including the president received
practically the same votes President, 304,940;
Lieutenant-Governor, 304,624; Secretary of State,
304,015; State Auditor, 304,583; State Treasurer,
304,343; Attorney-General, 304,686; Railroad and
Warehouse Commissioner, 304,666; Judge of the Supreme
Court, 304,781. The Populist votes for these offices
ranged between 23,907 and 24,153. The Democratic
vote for the same offices ranged a little wider be­
cause both factions voted for the same candidate for
Judge of the Supreme Court and several conservatives
who had wanted the same candidate for Secretary of
State apparently voted for Leseur instead of their
own candidate. Official Manual of Missouri. 18971898, 11, 40, 68, 70, 01. Further confirmation can
TieTound by comparing lists of those counties which
gave Bryan 100 more votes than Stephens, those which
gave Lewis more votes (Footnote continued to pag
conservatives of the southeast counties gave Palmer and
Buckner very few votes.
At the conservatives’ convention
in St. Louis, they had wanted to nominate national candi­
dates and support the liberal Democratic state ticket.97
They were among the group who left the convention before
the National Democratic state ticket was nominated,
McKinley received more votes than Lewis, the Republican
gubernatorial candidate, in only ten oountles, six of
which were from this section, the conservative Democrats
in southeast Missouri probably voted for McKinley and
liberal Democratic candidates for state office.
an examination of the National Democratic votes in each
oounty, it seems logical to conclude that not evan all the
presidents and secretaries of the Sound Money Clubs voted
for Palmer and Buckner.
This seemed to indicate that the rank and file of
the Democratic party in the cities had also come to ac­
cept the liberal doctrines which the farmers had been
(Footnote continued from page 320.) than McKinley,
and those in which the heaviest Populist vote was
cast in 1892. The correlation is remarkable. Of­
ficial Manual of Missouri, 1897-1898, 9-11.
St. Louis Republic, August 29, 1896.
The six counties in southeast Missouri which gave
McKinley more votes than Lewis were St.
Perry, Pemiscot, Mississippi, Butler, and Madiso •
Since the Populist vote in that section seems to
have been irregular, no justifiable
contention may be found in analyzing the Democratic
-322advocating so long.
If the ballots cast In the election
of 1896 can be accepted as proof, the country versus city
pattern which had seemed to mark the factionalism in the
Democratic party since 1888 was only an illusion created
by the fact that the conservative leaders in the state had
been the representatives of the commercial and manufactur­
ing interests of the city.
The factional struggle within the Democratic party
in Missouri, which had assumed the proportions of a polit­
ical revolt in 1895, was the result of a transformation
of the political theories of a faction in the party.
transformation had come as the result of the changing eco­
nomic and social environment which accompanied the passing
of the frontier and the industrial revolution.
The intro­
duction of machinery on the farm and the farmers* desires
to acquire more and more goods which they did not produce
themselves made farming a commercial enterprise instead
of a way of life.
The farmers were not always able to
solve the problems created by the changing condi tions
which made an increasing cash income neoessary for their
well being and happiness.
The farmers, however, did not admit that part of
their trouble was caused by an inability to adjust their
business methods to the changing conditions, nor that
their desire for a higher standard of living might be the
root of their trouble.
They could see their neighbors in
-323towns enjoying more of the luxuries which were being pro­
duced by the new manufacturing prooesses and felt that
they were being cheated of their share.
It was hard for
them to understand why the farmers, who had been taught to
believe that their calling was the most important and hon­
orable of them all, seemed to be losing in the race to
share the good things of live*
The resulting discontent coupled with the financial
distress which accompanied the long period of declining
prices, in which the farmers particularly suffered, made
them susceptible to the agitation and education of the
leaders who developed*
The farmers reacted by joining
farm organizations in which the agitation and education
progressed more rapidly.
As a result they were led to be­
lieve that their troubles were caused by high freight
rates, monopoly control of prices, and too little money in
Admitting their inability to cope successfully with
railroads and monopolies, they turned to the government
for relief.
Having been blocked by the invocation of the
Interstate commerce clause of the United States constitu­
tion in their attempts to work through state legislation,
they turned to the federal government to secure protection
from exploitation by the railroads and monopolies as well
as to secure relief through an expansion of the currenoy.
In defending the justice and the soundness of their_______
-324demands, they developed the arguments which stressed the
transformation in their political theories.
They were forced to oast aside or qualify the lais­
sez-faire theory in demanding government regulation of
railroad rates and practices.
Since railroads were a nat­
ural monopoly and had been built with the aid of national,
state, and local subsidies, some of the laissez-faire
theory could be preserved, but to support their demands
against other monopolies they were foroed to admit the
prinoiple that the government must intervene to protect
the economically weak from the strong.
On this principle
laws protecting the laborer from exploitation by his em­
ployer, guarding the public health, and amending the com­
mon law of eaveat emptor could be supported.
In their efforts to secure legislation to protect
their rights or to secure an equal economic opportunity,
the farmers discovered that the political system was too
insensitive to the popular will.
Since the state legis­
lature did not always enact the type of legislation which
they desired, the referendum, initiative, and recall were
The United States Senate proved to be one of
their stumbling blocks; they reacted by demanding the di­
rect election of senators.
Having met with sinister in­
fluence in the selection of officers, they supported such
reforms as the Australian ballot, state regulated
325primaries, and laws forbidding corrupt practices in elec
This transformation in political and economic theo­
ries was slow hut definite.
The farmers in the Democratic
party who had once advocated a laissez-faire system of
political economy and a state rights theory in government
were led to qualify each hy the force of circumstances
and the necessity for securing relief through federal leg­
The qualifications were ea^anded as economic
conditions became worse, as the program of agitation, edu­
cation, and organization advanced, and as they met added
resistance to their demands.
The gradual change was rath­
er accurately reflected in party politics in Missouri be­
tween 1880 and 1896.
The peculiar cross current which Civil War hatreds
caused to flow through party politics dominated the polit­
ical situation so much in Missouri that the farm movement
A corrupt practices act was enacted in Missouri in
1893 which Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia. 1895, 500,
said was the most radical yet passed since some of
i.t# provisions were ahead of any views on reform in
this respect. Offering a bribe or influencing a
voter illegally was made a felony punishable by a
$500 fine and from two to five years in Jail. Can­
didates and committees were required to publish all
expenditures under oath before a certificate of
election could be issued. Expenditures were strict­
ly limited. The next highest candidate was granted
the right to bring an action against the winner any
time during the term of office. If proof were sub­
mitted the office holder lost the office. The refer­
endum and initiative became a part of Missouri's
political system in 1909.
326was somewhat submerged until 1880,
The Democratic farm­
ers had been restive and the transformation in their po­
litical theories had begun in the seventies, but they were
apparently willing to conqpromise their demands to save the
state from "Black Republicanism."
The Conservative Demo­
crats were willing apparently to make some concessions to
the farmer faction to hold the party together.
The legis­
lature was enabled to regulate railroads by the constitu­
tion of 1875 and a few ineffective laws were subsequently
passed, but ex-Whig and Union Democrat governors could
always block the farmers* demands.
A third party developed during the seventies whose
platforms indicated that it was a farmers* party unbiased
by Civil War hatreds.
Since the Republicans showed a
tendency to work with the third party to defeat the Demo­
crats, the Democratic farmers, whose memory of reconstruc­
tion proscriptions caused them to hate the Republicans,
did not join the third party readily.
A few of them did,
but the large majority chose to fight for their principles
within the Democratic party.
As a result the farmers*
movement in Missouri assumed the form of a factional
struggle among Democrats, which was softened by the desire
of each faction to keep the Republicans out of office.
Since the farmer faction in the party was almost
synonomous with the Confederate faction, the farmers were
handicapped until the commercial and manufacturing inter-
327ests were stirred to protest against discrimination and
high freight rates which injured their business and gave
advantages to cities other than their own.
There were
signs in 1880 that the Democrats who were interested in
commerce and manufacturing might form a coalition with
the farmers to regulate the railroads.
The conservatives
were too strong, however, and nominated candidates for the
state offices who believed that a friendly attitude toward
the railroads was the best policy.
When the census of 1880 revealed that St. Louis was
losing in a race with Chicago for commercial supremacy,
the merchants and manufacturers added the respectability
of their leadership to the Confederate farmers who were
made discontented because of a drought in 1881 and the
hard times which followed.
This combination proved too
strong for the conservatives.
An ex-Confederate major
general was elected governor in 1884 and a battle against
the conservatives supported by the railroad lobby began.
After failing in the regular sessions of 1885 and 1887,
the desired regulatory law was finally enacted by a spe­
cial session of the legislature in 1887.
As a result of the struggle over the railroad law
so many of the older conservatives lost their influence
in the party that a group of younger men assumed the lead­
secured the state offices in 1888.
Instead of
bringing a period of quiescence, however, a new faction-
-328alism began to develop almost immediately.
The tariff
issue which had been a bone of contention in the party
sinoe 1876 drove the manufacturing element out of the
dominant faction in 1888 and the demand of the Farmers*
Alliance for regulation of corporations and monopolies
opened a rift between the farmers and the commercial
The commercial element in the party now became the
They clung to the control of the party
machinery, but acquiesced in the reforms made by the farm­
ers in the legislatures of 1889 and 1891.
In 1892 the
conservatives asserted their leadership and used their
control of the party machinery to support the nomination
of Cleveland whom the farmers already distrusted.
In the
nomination of state officers, the farmers used their num­
bers to select liberals.
The country-city coalition still
continued to function as before with the country furnish­
ing most of the votes and the city in oharge of the party
When the National Administration failed to attack
the tariff problem which the farmers had been told was
the cause of their troubles and instead used all the power
of the patronage to force through a money policy which the
farmers believed would add to their financial distress,
the money issue became predominant, and the revolt against
the conservative leaders began to brew.
When the
389conservatives were successful in stifling the protest
which the farmers wanted to make in 1894, enough Demo­
cratic farmers made a stay-at-home protest to cause -the
party to be defeated in the state election the first time
since 1870*
Stung to action by the defeat in 1894 and goaded by
the continued stubborn resistance of the conservative
leaders to the will of the majority, liberal leaders arose
in Missouri to save the party from disintegration.
their leadership the state central committee was forced
to call a special convention at Pertle Springs in August,
1895 which laid the ground work for the complete eradica­
tion of conservative leadership at the convention in
Sedalia in April, 1896.
The election of 1896 confirmed
the new leaders and their contentions that the Demoorats
in Missouri had accepted progressive theories.
The liber­
alism introduced into the party by the agrarian movement
between 1880 and 1896 has continued to manifest itself in
the policies of the party.
52J22EL 2L
Commissioner of Agriculture for th*
g g * igSOTwashlngton, Government Print ing oT?Tc~
Annual Report of the Commissioner of Agriculture for the
Years 1881-1982. Washlngton. Government £rinSTng"5Tfice, 1882.
First Report of the Secretary of Agrioulture. 1889. Wash­
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i889T"Washington. Government Printing office, 1889.
Yearbook of the United States Department of Agriculture.
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T O ? "upon the bill'Ys. 4675) to £rovl?ra iinlt of~
ralue. and for the coinage of gold a n d silver,
for other purposes, Submitted by lir• Wickham, from
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Leseur, Secretary of State, ed. Jefferson city,
Tribune Printing Co., 1899.
Official Manual of the State of Missouri. 1901-1902, Sam
B.Cook, Secretary of State, ed, "efferson City,
Tribune Printing Co., 1901.
Official Manual of the State of Missouri. 1905-19_04, Sam
B.Cook, Secretary of State, ed. Jefferson City,
Tribune Printing Co., no date.
Fourth Annual Report of the Railroad Commissioners of the
State of Missouri. I5?8~ Jefferson City, carter and
Regan ,"^879.
Combined Fifth and Sixth Annual Reports, 1879, 1880•
S t . Louis, Jlohn t. Smith and Co., 1881.
Seventh Annual Report. 1881,
and Ferguson, 1882.
Eighth Annual Report, 1882.
Journal Co., 1883.
Ninth Annual Report. 1883.
Journal Co., 1884.
Jefferson City, Burch
Jefferson City, state
Jefferson City, state
Eleventh Annual Report. 1885.
une Printing Co., 1886.
Jefferson City, Trib­
Fourteenth Annual Report. 1888.
Tribune Printing Co., 1890.
Jefferson City,
Sixteenth Annual Report of the Railroad and Warehouse Com­
missioners of the slate of Misaouri~lsor~TEe~i‘ear IEcTing December 31. 1890. Jefferson City, Tribune
Printing Co., 1892.
Seventeenth Annual Report. 1891.
tribune Printing Co., 1892.
Jefferson City,
The Official History of the Great Strike of 1886 on the
Southwestern Railway System. Compiled by the Bureau
of tabor Statistics ana Inspection, bound with the
Eighth Annual Report of the Bureau of Labor Statis­
tics and inspection of Missouril8~5^. Jefferson
City, fribune Printing Co., 1&§7.
All the newspapers listed below were printed in Mis­
Files of all for the years listed are in the li­
brary of the State Historical Society of Missouri, Colum­
bia, Missouri.
Atchison County Journal, weekly, Rockport, 1880.
Daily State Journal. daily, Jefferson City, 1878.
Dally Tribune, daily, Jefferson City, 1883, 1885.
Evening Demoorat, daily, Sedalia, 1896.
Farmers Union, weekly, Memphis, 1891, 1892, 1894.
-337Gazette, Dally, Sedalla, 1890.
Gazette, weekly, Brookfield, 1893.
1884, 1888, 1890, 1891.
n e o i n w i *file.
f^?95» Prior
J®?6 • to
1886,* l
1875 TE
wasthe---Missouri Democrat.
The Greenback Derrick, weekly, California, March to
S606Ml)Or} X8o2T^
The Herald, daily, St. Joseph, 1880, 1890, 1894.
Journal Democrat, weekly, Warrensburg, 1896.
Lincoln County Herald, weekly, Troy, 1873.
Missouri Democrat, dally, St. Louis, 1872.
Missouri Republican, daily, St. Louis, 1875.
Missouri Statesman, weekly, Columbia, 1873, 1874, 1876,
1578, 1880, 1883, 1895, 1894.
The National, weekly. Edina, 1879.
The Newspaper, weekly,
California, 1888
The Peoples Messenger, weekly, Memphis,
to July, 1896.
Republican, weekly, Macon, 1882.
Republican, daily, St. Louis, 1880, 1882, 1884, 1886, 188^
1&&8 until May 31 after which time
it became the1
Republic. Tiles of Republic examined, 1888, 1889,
1S90,'“IS91, 1895, 1833. H s o (semiweekly) Republic,
1892, 1894.
Republican, weekly, Trenton, 1873.
Tribune, weekly, Jefferson City, 1874, 1876.
Tribune. weekly, Liberty, 1880.
Weekly Advertiser, weekly, Boonville, 1895, 1896.
Weekly Democrat, weekly, Clinton, 1895.
Weekly Journal, weekly, Warrensburg, 1874.
-338M1soellaneous Books, Pamphlets, and Unpub­
lished Documents
Appleton *s Annual Cyclopedia and Register of Important
Events. N e w York, D. Appletonand CoT7 Annual.—
Ayer, N . W . , and Sons, Directory of Newspapers and Period­
icals; a guide to publications printed Tn tEe United
States and possessions, the TSominlon ofU a n a J a . Ber­
muda, Cuba,^nfl the West^Tndies. including maps; ~desorlptlons of the publications. tEe state, cities and
togns In which they are published; complete~cIasslPhiladelphia, N. W. iyor and Sons, Inc.,
1684| 1901#
History of the Farmers* Allianoe. The Agricultural Wheel.
The Farmers1 and “Laborers * Onion, The Farmers* Mutual
Benefit Association. frhe Patrons of Husbandry. an?
Other Farm Organizations. Edited and compiled by the
St. Louis Journal of Agriculture. Official Organ of
the Farmers’ and Laborers* union, St. Louis, 1890.
Hyde, William, and Conard, Howard L., Encyclopedia of the
History of St• Louis. A Compendium or fetistory and Bi­
ography 7or*~5eady Reference. 4 volume's! Efew York,
fhe Southern Historical Society, 1899.
lai or
of the Proceedings
proceedings or
of the Fourteenth Annual ses­
Session of the Missouri slate Grange Held at Enobnoster,
gciobef I T ”and W , ”T a 5 C ~ S e d 5 l ! a .HrTHTfeeynolils--Steam Printing and Binding, 1886.
Sixteenth Annual Session Held at Maryville. October
16. 1?. 18. 1886. Hannibal, standard Printing Co.,
Seventeenth Annual Session Held at Boonville, October
lO. ll. 127 1889. Hannibal, standard Printing do.,
Twentieth Annual Session Held at Liberty, December 8,
y.'~T67 IT.T-851T LiberfcvTTlbertyTrlbune Office,
Twenty—first A n n ual Session Held at Higginsville, De­
cember 8. 9, 10. ll.T 8 9 2 .~ Lexington. Intelligencer
b c i n t T893.
0, H
and Progress
Af p^trane
»jr, «•
u . , Origin
yi*6Au emu
rxo^rcBB of
or the
toe orrter*
oraer of
^ |Ji5b|n|ry"|n tEFUniied Stages, a Krsferf"for T8&'g.
IgToI PhiladeTptia, J . A. WagenselTer, 1875.
Minutes of the Boone County Grange. 1873-1883. unpublished
the State Historical Society, Columbia.»
Morgan, William Scott, The History of the Wheel, the A i n .
*S2& SSi JgJl• Impending Revolut ion. St. Louis7”c 7 T T
Woodward Co., 1 8 9 1 . Official history adopted at St.
Louis in 1889.
Peffer, W. A . , The Farmers* Side. His Troubles and the
Remedy. New York, D. Appleton and 6o., 18ST7
Report of the Tenth Annual Session of the Farmers* Con­
gress of the tfnlied States Held""at Council SluTFI.
Iowa, August 26, 27. and 28TT § 9 0 . Macedonia, Iowa,
Blue Grass Blade Job Office, 1891 •
Rollins, James S., letters to Carl Schurz, Microfilm Col­
lection, State Historical Society, Columbia, Missouri.
Originals in Carl Schurz Collection, Library of Con­
Rollins, James S., Manuscript Collection, State Historical
Society, Columbia, Missouri.
Shoemaker, Floyd C., and others, Messages and Proclamations
of the Governors of the State of Missouri. 12 volumes. Columbia, SSate Historical Society of Missouri,
White, Trumbull, ed., Silver and Gold of Both Sides of the
Shield. A symposium of tEe"*views o7 all parties on the
ourrenov~Queation as expressed by""Ihelr leading advo­
cates. thoroughly expounding the doctrines of rree
silver.*mono-metalllsm. and bl-metalliam. with argu­
ments. pro and con, from the pens of John Sherman, Wm.
35. ^ l i s o n .""7ohn‘7?. Carllsle, Edward Atkinson, feenj.
Tillman. Wm.
sTewart, W.~"J. Bryan, Wm. A. PeTTer,
William h T~Harvey, and otHers. Publisners Union,
Wilkinson, Alma Beatrice, The Granger Movement in Missouri.
Unpublished Master’s fSesis, University of Missouri,
Wright, Charles Omega, The Populist, Movement With.
Reference to M i s s o u r i . Unpublished Master s Thesis,
University*"of Missouri, 1921.
-340Contemporary Magazine Articles?
Bemis, Edward W . , **The Discontent of the Farmer," Journal
of Political Economy. I (March, 1893), 193-213^
Drew, Frank M . , "The Present Farmers* Movement," Political
.Science Quarterly. VI (June, 1891), 282-310.
Emerick, C. F., "An Analysis of Agricultural Discontent,"
Political Solence Quarterly.XI (September, 1896), 433463; XI (December, 1896)', 601-639: XII (March, 1897),
Gleed, J. Willis, "Western Farm Mortgages," Forum. IX
(March, 1890), 93-105.
----McVcy, Frank L., "The Populist Movement," American Economic
Association, Economic Studies. I (1896), No. 3, 131209.
Mappin, W. F., "Farm Mortgages and the Small Farmer,"
Political Science Quarterly. IV (September, 1889),
Peffer, William A., "The Farmers* Defensive Movement,"
Forum. VIII (December, 1889), 463-473.
Peters, Alfred H., "The Depreciation of Farm Land," Quar­
terly Journal of Economics. IV (October, 1889), 18-33.
Pierson, C. W., "The Outcomes of the Granger Movement,"
Popular Solence Monthly. XXXII (January, 1888), See­
Tracy, Frank B., "Rise and Doom of the Populist Party,"
Forum.XVI (October, 1893), 240-250.
Walker, C. S., "The Farmers* Movement," Annals of the
American Academy of Political and Social Solence, IV
(March, '1894), 790-7951
Arnett, Alex M . , The Populist Movement in Georgia, New York;
Longmans Green and Co., 1922.
Barolay, Thomas S., The Liberal Republican Movement in Mis­
souri, 1865-18717“ Columbia, State Historical Society
of Missouri, 19&6.
Forgotten," The Life of John Peter
New ?ork, fcobbs Merrill So77 1^38:--------
Barnes, Janes A., "Gold Standard Denoorats and Party Con­
flict," Mississippi Valley Historical Review. XYEI
(October, 1930J, 422-456.
--------------Barnhart, John D., "Raihfall and the Populist Party in Ne­
braska," American Political Science Review, x t t
(August, i$25), 5 2 7 - 5 4 0 . -------- ------Britton, Rollin J., "Joseph H. Burrows," Missouri Histori­
cal Ssiias*
(October, 1927), 3-IS'.
Buck, Solon Justus, The Granger Movement. a study of Agri­
cultural 0rganlzation and Its Political, liconomlo.
and Social Manifestations. 1675-1880. Cambridge,
Harvard University Press, 15137
Byars, William Vincent, An American Commoner; the Life and
Times of Richard Parks Bland, a Situdy"of the Last
4uarter of the Nineteenth Century; Witli arTTntroductlon by WTll'iam Jennlngs"’Bryan and personal remln-~
iscenoes by Mrs. Richard p.1 Bland. Columbia, Mis­
souri, fi. W. Stevens, 1900.
Commons, John R., and others, The History of Labor in the
United States, .2 volumes. New 'York, Macmillan, 1918.
Haynes/Fred E., James Baird Weaver. Iowa City, Iowa, The
State Historical Society of Iowa, 1919.
Haynes, Fred E., Third Party Movements Since the Civil War
with Special Reference to Iowar"~Iowa tilty, Iowa, The
State Historical Society of Iowa, 1916.
Hicks, John D.t The Populist Revolt, a History of the
Farmers* in'iance and fbe People¥*~3%rtv. Minneapo­
lis, University of Minnesota press, 1931.
Hicks, John D., "The Birth of the Populist Party," Minne­
sota History. IX (September, 1928), 219-247.
Hicks, John D., "The Third Party Tradition in American
Politics," Mississippi Valley Historlcal Review, XX
(June, 1933), 3-28.
Hicks, John D., "The Farmers* Alliance," North Carolina
Historical Review. VI (July, 1929), 254-280.
Hirseh, A. H., "Efforts of the Grange in the Middle West
to Control the Price of Machinery," Mississippi Vallejt Historical Review. XV (March, 19257, 4 7 3 - & 6 ~
Hunt, Robert Lee, A History of the Farmers* Movements of
the Southwest. W 5 - 1 9 2 5 T College station, TexasTA.
Mid li. college ofTfexa^Press, 1935.
Leaoh, J. A., "Public Opinion and the Inflation Movement
i ~ J £ Baouri*n Missouri Historical Review. XXtV (April,
1930(, 379-413; XXIV (July, 1930), 568-584; XXV (Oc­
tober, 1930), 116-146,
Lopata, Edward L , , Local Aid to Railroads in Missouri. New
York, Parnassus Press, 1937"
McClure, C. H., "A Century of Missouri Politics," Missouri
Historical Review. XV (January, 1921), 315-3357
Martin, Robert F., National Income in the United States.
1799-1938. New York, Na’fcional'Tndustrial Conferene e
Board, 1939.
Merriam, Charles E., and Gosnell, Harold F., The American
Party System: an introduction to the studyof politi­
cal parties i n t h e itnlted States. Revised 'M. Wew
¥ork, rfaomilXah, 1929.
Mott, Frank Luther, History of American Magazines. 3 vol­
umes. Volume I. 1741-1250. tfew York, p . Appleton and
Co., 1930; Volume II. 1866-1865, and Volume III, 18651885. Cambridge, Harvard ttoiversity Press, 1938.
Mumford, F. B., "A Century of Missouri Agriculture," Mis­
souri Historical Review, XV (January, 1921), 277-657.
Nevins, Allan, Grover Cleveland. A Study in Courage.
York, Dodd, Ulead arid Co., 1923.
Nixon, Herman 0., "The Cleavage Within the Farmers* Alli­
ance Movement," Misslsaippl Valley Historical Review.
XV (June, 1926), 22-55.
Nixon, Herman C., "The Economic Basis for the Populist
Movement in Iowa," Iowa Journal of History and Poli­
tics, XXI (June, 192377 573-596.
Nixon, Herman C., "The Populist Movement in Iowa," Iowa
Journal of History and Politics. XXIV (January, 1926),
543Rogin, Leo, The Introduction of Farm Machinery and Its Re­
lation F t n e Productivity ofTabor in the“AgrTcui~
ture of liheUnftea States During theTTineTeenth flentury. University of riaiifornfa PuBTications in Eco­
nomics. IX (July, 1931}, University of California
Press, 1931.
Rosser, Charles McDaniel, The Crusading Commoner, a close21. William Jennings kryan and ni¥ times, wfth an
introductory forewordby JosenEusTaniels. Dallas,
iathis. Van Nort, and 5o.7"l8Sf.--------Sohleslnger, Arthur Meier, The Rise of the City.
The Macmillan Co., 19357~
New York,
Schmidt, Louis B«, "Some Significant Aspects of the
Agrarian Revolution in the United States,” Iowa Jour­
nal of History and Politics. XXVIII (July, T ^ ) 7 3 7 l 395.
Stahl, John M . , Growing Up With the West. The Story of a
Bus^r. aulet"Tife. New ?ork. Longmans. Green anT'c'o.,
Stanwood, Edward, A. Hi story of the Presidency from 1788 to
1899. New edT, revisedTy Charles Knowles Bolton'.
New York, Houghton Mifflin Co., 1928. 2 volumes.
Stevens, Walter B., "The Tragedy of the St. Louis Republic,”
Missouri Historical Review. XXII (January, 1928), 139149.
Stevens, Walter B., ’’When Cleveland Came to St. Louis,”
Missouri Historical Review, XXI (January, 1927), 145iss:----------------------"■
Stevens, Walter B., "The New Journalism in Missouri," Mis­
souri Historical Review, XVII (April, 1923), 321-330;
XVlf^(July, 1923), 470-478; XVIII (October. 1923), 5663: XVIII (January, 1924), 197-211; XVIII (April,
1924), 404-414; XVIII (July, 1924), 553-561; XIX (Oc­
tober, 1924), 105-113; XIX (January, 1925), 325-337;
XIX (April, 1925), 427-437; XIX (July, 1925), 675-688.
Switzler, William F., Illustrated History of Missouri,
1541-1877. St. Louis, C. H. Barnes, editor and pub­
lisher, 1879.
Thomas, Raymond D., "A Study in Missouri
mssouri Historical Review, XXI (January, 1927), 126-184,
H T T A p r i l , 1927), 438-454; XXI (July, 1927), 570-580.
-344Turner , Frederick Jackson* The Frontier in American His­
tory* New York, H e n r y T T flolt and Co., W 2I.
United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statis­
tics, "Mechanization of Agriculture as a Factor in
Labor Displacement," Monthly Labor Review. XXXIII
(October, 1931), 1-35.
Wickizer, Frank, "A County Thirty Years in Rebellion,"
Century. LXXIII (April, 1907), 928-936.
Homer Clevenger was born on a farm near Orrick,
Missouri, October 27, 1900.
He was graduated from a rural
school in 1915 and attended Orrick High School for two
At the beginning of
his third year of high school,
September, 1917, he enlisted in the United States army and
subsequently served about two years.
Twelve months of the
service was with the American Expeditionary Forces in
France and seven months with the Army of Occupation in
After demobilization in August, 1919, he began to
teach in the rural schools of Ray County, Missouri, and
attend summer sessions at the Central Missouri State
Teachers College at Warrensburg.
He was graduated from
Training High School in 1924 and received the Bachelor of
Science in Education degree in 1928.
In August, 1932,
the Master of Arts degree was conferred upon him by George
Peabody College for Teachers at Nashville, Tennessee.
After having taught eight years in the rural schools
of Ray County, he began ten years* service as superinten­
dent of a small consolidated high school in Henry County,
Missouri, in 1928.
During the past two years, 1938-1940,
he has done graduate work in history at Missouri Univer­
sity and served as instructor oi history at the branch
summer session of Missouri University at Holla.
May 9, 1940
Dean Henry E. Bent
110 Jesse Hall
Dear Dean Bent:
It has.been a pleasure to read
the interesting study by Mr. Homer
Clevenger on “Agrarian Politics in
Missouri, 1880-1896". In my opinion,
this thesis meets the general standard
that has been established in this in­
stitution for the doctor's dissertation.
Yours very truly,
William L. Bradshaw
Associate Professor of
Political Science
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