Charles Frederick Holder.

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him is disgusting. If he wanted to
stay in this country why did he not
register? The American citizen has
to register before he can poll his vote,
and as he has to comply with the re-
quirements of the laws, why should
not aliens ? The Six Companies doubt-
less are to blame for the failure on the
part of most of the Chinese to regis-
ter, but if the latter — be they here by
right or fraud — are under more obli-
gation to follow the dictates of the
former than to obey the laws of this
country, Hong Kong or San Quentin
is a good destination for them, and the
sooner they reach one place or the
other the better for ourselves. The
inimical and defiant' attitude assumed
by the Six Companies ought to entail
punishment, which can be inflicted
upon them .by depriving them of the
slaves from whose labor they make
their wealth.

It has been alleged that the Six
Companies, understanding as they do
the situation of the Chinaman in



THE CHINESE SIX COMPANIES.



477



America much better than the diplo-
matic agents of the Emperor of China,
more directly represent him than his
representative and minister at Wash-
ington. This belief — rightly grounded
or not — has led to the conjecture that
the Six Companies, in their open and
aggressive disposition in resisting the
Geary Act, are acting under directions
from the Government at Peking. In
view of the manner in which previous
Acts passed by Congress for the re-
striction of Chinese immigration were
received by that Government, this
view is untenable. The arrival in this
city of Chew Shu Sum, a mandarin
of high degree, and the document
of which he was the bearer entirely
overthrows this theory.

He arrived on June 18th last to fill
the office of President of the Yeong Wo
Company, and also to act ex-officio as
a member of the board of consulting
directors attached to the Imperial
Chinese Consulate. On June 21st, a
copy of the document was posted in
Chinatown. It was to this effect :
"By order of his Imperial Majesty,
the Emperor of China." After a long
preamble by way of greeting from the
Emperor to his people in America, he
assures his subjects that the existing
relations between the two countries
are of a nature most satisfactory, and
he commands his people here to do
nothing that can in any way prejudice
this desirable state of affairs. He
commands his people to obey the laws
of this country, and to let their actions
be such that the American people will
be proud to recognize them and let



them enjoy the same rights and privi-
leges as are accorded to the subjects of
other powers. Above all he enjoins
patience, and assures them that it is
by the exercise of this excellent virtue
that their demands will finally Ik
ceded to. He then deplores the I
that certain classes of the Chi
have persisted in maintaining organi
zations the object of which is to carry
on a system of blackmail, and he calls
upon law abiding Chinese to unite in
an effort to root out these societies u
it is through the unlawful acts 1 >f t
highbinders that so much discredit
has been brought to the Chinese peo-
ple. The circular closes with an ad-
monition to the Chinese in the United
States to obey the laws, refrain from
any overt acts, and to join in an en-
deavor to erase from the minds of the
American people, by honest and up-
right living, the prevailing feeling of
antagonism toward the Chinese peo-
ple. The Emperor pledges his un-
failing support and unflagging love to
his people in America.

Although in this official circular no
mention of the Geary Act is made,
its publication at the time of the ex-
citement aroused by that enactment is
significant, and tends to show the
feelings of the Chinese Government
on the subject, and the pacific line of
policy that it will pursue. It remains
to be seen whether the Six Companies
will now continue to defy the pro-
visions of the law and thereby aggra-
vate the difficulties of the Chin
who have been so blind and ignorant
as to follow their evil counsel.






THE EXTRA SESSION OF CONGRESS.

IT may be said that a session of Congress
called by the President has been a rare
event. In time of peace, the regular ses-
sions have generally been deemed sufficient
to provide for the wants of the country.
Extraordinary sessions have usually been
called when war was imminent or a state of
war actually existed. The last of such ses-
sions commenced on the 4th of July, 1861,
which was made necessary by rebellion
against the Government. The country was
carried through that gigantic struggle and
the difficulties of reconstruction without an
extra session, and financial and economic
legislation made necessary by the change
from war to peace, was enacted by Congress
in regular sessions. Every President has
been loth to call Congress together, and
none has done so except in a great emer-
gency.

Does the condition at this time require
that Congress should be convened at a date
not more than ninety days distant from the
session appointed by law ? There is no
war nor prospect of war, and no such busi-
ness depression prevails as to demand
immediate action. The revenues of the
Government are sufficient to meet current
expenses, and payment to no public creditor
is withheld. There is, however, a monetary
stringency which has existed for several
years and which has grown more and more
serious as population, production and
trade have increased. 'There is no pretense
that the extra session which is to commence
in September, is called to enact laws that
will relieve from the monetary stringency,
nor is there anything in the professions of
the party in power which furnishes ground



for expectation that any such legislation
will be enacted unless it be the pledge of
the Chicago Convention to repeal the inter-
nal revenue tax upon State bank circulation.
This would probably result ultimately in an
enlargement of the paper money volume,
but State bank notes cannot be made legal
tender, and they will be a circulating me-
dium devoid of uniformity and indifferently
secured at best to the bill holders. It will
bring a return of the annoyances and losses
from which the people suffered before all
classes of our money became national and
circulable without discrimination in every
part of the country.

The ostensible objection calling the extra
session is to repeal the Sherman law, which
requires the Government to purchase
54,000,000 ounces of silver per annum, on
which certificates shall be issued, and
which enter into circulation as money.
This does enlarge the volume of the circu-
lating mediums and tends to remove the
stringency which is the direct result of an
insufficiency of money to accommodate the
business of the country. No measure is
proposed by the administration as a substi-
tute for the Sherman law, and its simple
repeal will have the effect to still further
contract the currency where there should
be a liberal and continued expansion. The
complaint against the law is that through
redemption of the certificates, the gold
reserve in the Treasury is being drawn upon.
As construed by the Secretary of the Treas-
ury, the law produces that result, but is his
construction a correct one ? The Act ex-
pressly says that they may be redeemed in
gold or silver coin. They are made legal
tender and are receivable for all dues to the
478



QUESTIONS OF THE DAY.



479



Government, and may be used by the
national banks as the reserve required by
law. To assure a sufficiency of silver coin
to redeem these certificates the Act requires
that 2,000,000 ounces shall be coined
monthly until July, 1891, and thereafter as
much as shall be necessary to enable the
Secretary to redeem the certificates. It
would seem, therefore, that Congress in-
tended that the certificates shall be re-
deemed in silver, especially if the use of
gold for that purpose would embarrass the
Treasury. There is a provision which
makes it incumbent on the Secretary to
preserve the parity between gold and silver.
This is construed to mean that the parity
shall be preserved treating gold coin as
money, and silver coin as a commodity,
when our coinage laws declare the relative
value of the two metals, when coined,
by saying that 412^ grains of silver
ten per cent alloy shall be equal to 25.8
grains of gold. The coinage laws nowhere
deal with either of these metals as a com-
modity. The construction given to the
Sherman Act by the Treasury department
is a forced one and is in the interest of the
gold-holding class. If the Secretary had
exercised his discretion in the interest of
silver, there would be no draft upon the
Treasury gold, and hundreds of millions of
dollars would not now lie idle in the vaults
of the Treasury, nor would the possessors
of gold have advantages over the masses of
the people.

Conceding for the sake of argument that
the Secretary of the Treasury correctly con-
strues the Sherman law, and that he is
bound to redeem the certificates issued
thereunder with gold, it does not prove that
the law occasions the shipment of gold to
Europe. The gold reserve is not drawn upon
for domestic use, but to ship abroad. This is
not done for the sake of producing financial
mischief; to say that it is done for such a
purpose would be alleging that the oper-
ators or shippers are idiots or unpatriotic
rascals. From the 1st of July, 1876, to the
1st of July, 1892, there were but two years
during which gold was sent abroad to pay
balances of trade The aggregate in those
years was but $30,000,000, and in the whole
period between the dates stated the balances
of trade in our favor aggregated $1,762,000,-



000. The fact is gold is drawn from the
Treasury on silver certificates and sent
abroad to pay balances of trade. This not
only depletes our stock of gold, but adds to
the money stringency; it is so much I
from the volume of our circulating medium.

What has caused this change from favor-
able to adverse balances of trade ? It is not
that there have been short crops, or that
the producing power of the countr\
been reduced by natural causes, nor that
consumption has been greater beyond what
results from an increase of population,
tainly the people have not lived more pro-
fusely or expended more recklessly than
during the preceding sixteen years.

Production of domestic manufae!
have fallen below the demand for domestic
consumption. That is what has made
debtor instead of a creditor in international
commerce. The cause of this change lies
in the prospective, and if solemn pron
are to be relied on, inevitable change of
policy affecting our industrial Intel
During the period when balances were so
largely in our favor the protective principle
in tariff legislation was recognized. So
long as it appeared certain that it would be
preserved, industries thrived and home pro-
ductions increased. The protective principle
is combatted by the Democratic party, and
in the late Chicago convention it was pro-
nounced unconstitutional. And in the cam-
paign of 1892 it was denounced in savage
terms. The McKinley law had been in force
less than eighteen months, when the P
dential election of that year took place.
The discussions during the campaign were
bewildering to those who contemplated em*
barking in industrial enterprises. As
as the result of the election became known,
radical changes in the tariff laws were an-
ticipated, which deterred the investment of
additional capital, and caused those already
engaged in manufacturing to curtail pro-
duction and reduce stocks that they might
escape ruination when the flood gates of
foreign importations should be thrown open.
The repeal of the Sherman law will not re-
strict the exportation of gold; it can only
be accomplished by the retention of a pol-
icy that tends to enlarge domestic produc-
tions and to lessen importations. Our
domestic commerce is more than ten times



480



QUESTIONS OF THE DAY.



greater than our foreign, and it is far better
to legislate with reference to the former
than to develop the importation side of the
latter.

As soon as the result of the last Novem-
ber election became known, the leaders of
the successful party began pressing upon
the President-elect the project of calling an
extra session of Congress, and it is well
understood that before the inauguration
such a step was determined on. The object
was to make radical changes in the revenue
laws; the subject of finances was not consid-
ered, but the single standard theory has by
circumstances been brought to a severe test.
The money stringency is now put forward
as the reason why an extra session is neces-
sary, when the real object evidently is to
overhaul the revenue laws on the line of
Democratic theory. The session has been
postponed until an indefensible execution
of the Sherman law should bring embar-
rassment to the business of the country that
may be charged upon the tariff legislation
of a Republican Congress, and constitute
the justification for a revision that will suit
the views of the importers and those op-
posed to giving protection to American
labor. The expense and confusion that will
be caused by the extra session are to be im-
posed on the country in order that there
may be plenty of time to prepare for the
election in 1896. The first Congress after a
Presidential election is always devoted more
or less to preparing for the next Presiden-
tial election. This Congress will probably
have been in session twelve months or more
when its term expires. The Democrats are
in full power, and if they act in concert they
can do what they please, and therefore will
be solely responsible for what is done.

Among thinking and impartial men there
is regret that the McKinley law will not be
thoroughly tested, and that economic legis-
lation is made the foot-ball of party politics.
Changes in it disturb values and create un-
certainty. Fluctuations in business injure
all concerned; those that result from natural
causes can be provided against better than



those that are arbitrarily produced by law.
The Republicans being in power successively
for many years, and during the previous
term of Mr. Cleveland having control of the
Senate, the reduction of duties were gradual,
and a reasonable degree of stability was pre-
served. In 1873, through the failure of a
banking house having ramified connec-
tions, and gold gambling in Wall street, a
considerable disturbance was created in
business, but there was no distress in the
entire period of Republican domination di-
rectly traceable to changes in economic
legislation; generally the country was pros-
perous, and wealth was developed more
rapidly than during any other period of our
history. It is unfortunate that we are prob-
ably on the eve of a change that will be
radical and untried in this country for more
than thirty years. Theoretically the change
proposed cannot work well, and the prin-
ciple that is to be introduced did not pro-
duce good results when it was in operation
from 1846 to 1861. Unless something is done
to stop the outflow of gold, and to enlarge
the volume of the circulating medium,
monetary stringency will become greater
and times harder than for many years. The
Hon. Boorke Cochran, in the June number
of the North American Review, says that a
free silver coinage bill cannot become a law
so long as Mr. Cleveland is President.
Hence it may be considered settled that an
enlargement of the money volume will not
come from that source, and a revision of
the tariff in accordance with Mr. Cleve-
land's ideas will have the effect to increase
the outflow of gold. What good wili come
from the extra session, indeed from any
sion of the present Congress, it is difficult
if not impossible to conceive. The best
thing that the President can do is to assure
the coifntry that the protective principle in
tariff legislation shall be preserved, so far
as he can control, and that the money vol-
ume shall be increased through free coin-
age of silver, or in some way other than
that of flooding the country with State bank




"—when the fight begins within himself,
A man's worth something."— Browning.

THE World's Fair presents an extensive
and variegated array of literature from
every civilized nation, the result of centur-
ies of historical investigation, scientific re-
search, philosophical evolutions and artistic
experiments and developments.

Among these products of ages California,
though still very young, claims a place for
the work of her sons and daughters of the
genius of literature. A room which bears
the impress of the artistic taste of Edmund
Russell, the well-known disciple of Delsarte,
is devoted to an exhibit of California litera-
ture. It is enclosed by a beautifully carved
redwood screen six feet high, designed by
Mr. Russell ; and along the top is run a cor-
nice of bronzed magnolia leaves and flow-
ers. The color and form of all the articles
in the room are in harmonious relation, pro-
ducing a subdued, artistic and restful effect.
Inviting divans are arranged in the corners
of the room, upholstered with the decora-
tive California leather, concerning which
an article appeared in the Columbian edi-
tion of the Caufornian.

There are portraits of notable musicians
of California, albums of their compositions,
and Japanese, Chinese, Hawaiian and In-
dian musical instruments . On one side are
sets of shelves holding painted China, pot-
tery, brass and iron work by California
artists. There are also portraits by women



aW/t0R3



of the Golden State, of California celebri-
ties, notable among which are fire etcMnge
of Ina D. Coolbrith, Joaquin Miller an. I
Harte, and an excellent portrait of Joseph
LeConte. The book cases contain the dif-
ferent products of California lite ratur e, and
on an old-fashioned book stand are the
most prominent of these works by Mark
Twain, Chas. Warren Stoddard, Href Harte,
Joaquin Miller, Ina D. Coolbrith and ether*,
bound with dull plushes, velvet, cloth and
leather, and attached to the stand 1>\
chains. All these treasures are guarde
a gorgeous golden gate at the entrance of
the room, on which are wrought most ar-
tistically fruit, foliage, branches and
trunks in various tints of gold quartz. It is
a fitting emblem, not only of the mineral
wealth of the State, but of the intellectual
riches and future prospects ami possibilities
of a community that has so early demon-
strated its intellectual powers and literary
genius.

Mrs. Ella Sterling Cummins has reviewed
California writers and literature in a volume
entitled The Story of the Files. Mrs. Cum-
mins has carefully searched the files of the
Californian papers and magazines from the
earliest days of California to the present
time, and has spared no effort to collect
reliable data concerning the work and lives
of native writers of promise and promine:
Her task was not an easy one, and she is
deserving of much credit for the energy
and exhaustiveness with which she has pi
ecuted it. A perusal of the book will com-
pletely establish the fact that California has
a distinctive and original literature which
commands national recognition. Among
the names recorded are many of the conn-
try's foremost writers, whose work enjoys
a widespread reputation.

The book is issued under the auspices of
the "World's Fair Commission of Califor-
nia," and is in every way worthy of thesuc-



481



482



BOOKS AND AUTHORS.



cess with which it is certain to meet. Mrs.
Cummins is a clever writer of marked ability,
and may be classed with pride among Cali-
fornian authors.

Life's Sunbeams and Shadows is an at-
tractive volume of poems and prose, which
is offered the public by John Cotter Pelton,
and his friends who have materially aided
him in issuing it. It is an inviting and in-
teresting book, containing poems by Mr.
Pelton, interspersed with some by Joaquin
Miller, Charles Edward Markham, Ella
Wheeler "Wilcox, John Vance Cheney, Char-
lotte Perkins Stetson, Rose Hartwick
Thorpe and others. Mr. Pelton is well
known, respected and loved in educational
circles, having founded the first free public
school in San Francisco, and having been
identified with educational movements many
years afterwards. He has been a hard
worker, and has undergone great adversi-
ties and vicissitudes with undaunted courage
and unflagging energy. He is now ad-
vanced in years, and the victim of unfortu-
nate financial circumstances, and is deserving
of all the help his friends and admirers will
be sure to bestow upon him. This volume
of poems is, to a great extent, autobio-
graphical, and records the inner reflections
of the man, who through all the gloom of
his misfortunes, looked to the future with
faith and sweetness.

He says —

44 'Tis now the deepening twilight hour,
I,o I in the Eastern sky afar,
In smiling beam and twinkling bar,
Up glides my hope, my guiding star I "

Youth* a series of French essays by
Charles Wagner has been translated into
Knglishby I^rnest-Redwood. They are well
written, and contain some apposite truths
and valuable suggestions. Attention is
called to the evil influences upon the young
of the artificialness of social life and of its
lax morals, that destroy self-valuation and
respect, of the deadly effects of treating
these conditions as subjects of witticisms —
" the deadly mirth that consumes in its fire
all that should be sacred — " and of the evils
that may be brought upon children by
heredity. Our world is progressing, our
conditions improving, he says, and "We
must produce men who can govern them-
selves, and become masters of the new
world in order to acquire the good there is
in it. We can reach this end by a return to
normal thinking, which is the application
of the inductive method to all human facts,
and, above all, to the forgotten realities of

1 Dodd Mead & Co., New York.



the spiritual world, by a return to a nor-
mal way of living,— to reverence, to a feel-
ing of responsibility, to work and to sim-
plicity."

An author whose works have endeared
her to all young people, Margaret Sidney,
has written of "Whittier and the Chil-
dren" 2 in a way that reveals her compre-
hension of the poet's love for and sympathy
with the little ones. The spirit of whole-
some warmth, sweetness and purity that
pervades Whittier's poetry, seems to have
entered into the pages of the book, and ren-
dered it a fitting tribute to his memory.
There has probably not been another poet
who so thoroughly understood child nature,
and who was so able to meet it upon its
own grounds with its own directness and
simplicity. His soul to the day of hisdeath
was so pure and beautiful that he was not
obliged to look back over the usual vista of
sin and sorrow to the happy valley of child-
hood, but he chose a path wrapt in God's
own sunshine, that held him through life in
sympathy with the first glad days of youth,
when he lived in close communion with na-
ture ; when he

" —was monarch ; pomp and joy
Waited on the barefoot boy."

A series of addresses on The Drama 7 ' by
Henry Irving, with a frontispiece by Whit-
tier, should be of general interest to the
reading public, especially to those who have
not been accustomed to concede the drama
a place among the fine arts, but have rel-
egated it to an inferior artistic and moral
plane. Irving says, in the essay on u The
Stage as it is," that the productions on the
stage are merely the reflex of public taste,
and that M if the good people continue to
come to the theater in increasing crowds,
the stage, without losing any of its bright-
ness, will soon be good enough, if it is not as
yet, to satisfy the best of them." The book
also contains two essays on the art of acting,
in which he reveals its nobility and impor-
tance, and a short sketch on the four great
actors from Shakespeare's time to the time
of Byron. Burbage, the first of the four,
was one of the first interpreters of Shakes-
peare, then came Betterton, Garrick and
Edmund Kean, each one's originality add-
ing something to the art of his predecessor
and to the important adjustment and rela-
tion of stage settings to the art.

Henry Irving will probably visit the
Coast during autumn, and a perusal of his

2 D. T v athrop Co., Boston, Mass.

3 Tait Sons & Co., 31 Union Square, North N. Y.



BOOKS AND AUTHORS.



4»3



book on the drama will probably lend new
interest for those who intend witnessing his
performances.

Mortal A/an 1 , by A. Easton, is a philo-
sophical essay of five chapters in verse. It



Online LibraryCharles Frederick HolderThe Californian (Volume 4) → online text (page 62 of 120)