to bring about specie payments without disturbing the
financial or industrial world, and this he did with admirable
Industrial Awakening. In the business world the
country was taking on new life, and the most significant
feature was the awakening of the South. The new system
of free labor in the South was found to be immeasur-
ably superior to that of slave labor. The great coal
beds, the iron mines, second to none, the boundless timber
lands of the South, all of which had remained unused in
the past, were opened to development. Manufactories
were built in many Southern towns, and in addition to
4 I2 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
this there was a steady increase in the production of
In the North also there was a wonderful awakening,
most notably in the steel, flour, canned goods, meat-pack-
ing, and oil industries. Petroleum had been discovered in
western Pennsylvania in 1859 an d by the time we are
treating, the oil business had grown to vast proportions.
Great things were happening in the West. The Pacific
Railroad, completed in 1869, had opened the Rocky Moun-
tain country to development as nothing had ever done.
Colorado was admitted as the Centennial State in 1876,
and others were to follow a few years later. 2
Great Railroad Strike of 1877. One effect of the newly
awakening industrial life was the union of great business
interests into combinations or trusts. This brought unrest
among the laboring classes. In 1877 the great railroad
strike occurred. This was so extensive as to cover the
half of the country east of the Mississippi, and in all that
section railroad traffic was at a standstill for two weeks.
Pittsburg was the storm center, and millions of dollars'
worth of property was destroyed in that city. The gov-
ernors of several states were obliged to call for national
aid in putting down riots. The railroad strike was con-
tagious. It spread to. mining, manufacturing, and other
industries. In most cases the strikers gained but little.
Anti-Chinese Movement. The Chinese began coming
to California in large numbers soon after the Burlingame
Treaty was made with China (1868). These Mongolians
clung to their customs and superstitions and made no
pretense of becoming Americans. After earning a few
1 The production of cotton in 1860 was 4,670,000 bales; in 1905 it ex-
ceeded 13,000,000 bales.
2 For the date of the admission of all the states see Appendix.
FARMERS 1 ORGANIZATIONS 413
hundred dollars they would betake themselves back to
China, whence hordes of their countrymen would come
to America and repeajt the process. Their willingness to
work for very low wages rendered them undesirable com-
petitors with white laborers.
A movement against the Chinese in 1877 in San Fran-
cisco led to riots. Congress was besought to enact an
anti-Chinese law. In 1878 such a law was passed, but
vetoed by President Hayes. Ten years passed when, in
1888, a Chinese Exclusion measure became a law. This
was followed in 1892 by the Geary Chinese Exclusion law,
the most sweeping act of its kind ever enacted in any
country. This law has greatly relieved our western coast
of a most undesirable class.
Farmers' Organizations. A secret order called the
Grangers, or Patrons of Husbandry, was founded in 1867,
and reached its high-watermark, about i, 500,000 members,
both men and women, at the time of Hayes's presidency.
After this the membership declined and is now (1906)
about 800,000; but the order has strengthened internally
and promises to be permanent. Its object is to promote
The Farmers' Alliance, organized in 1873, also became
national in scope. It is not a secret order ; it gives more
attention to politics than do the Grangers.
THE GARFIELD TRAGEDY
James A. Garfield, who succeeded Mr. Hayes as Presi-
dent, was the second of our Presidents to die at the hands
of the assassin.
The Blaine-Conkling Feud. The Garfield tragedy had
its origin in a bitter feud between two great Republican
SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
leaders, James G. Elaine of Maine and Roscoe Conklingof
New York. Away back in 1866 when both were members
of the House these two men had a quarrel and forever
afterward were personal enemies. This feud had its results.
It was chiefly through Conkling's efforts that Elaine
failed to secure the presidential nomination in 1876.
Again in 1880, when it seemed that Elaine would surely
capture the prize, it was Conkling who led the forces against
him and secured his defeat. He did this by inducing
General Grant to con-
sent to be a candidate
for a third term and by
securing some three
hundred delegates to
stand faithfully for the
Elaine and Grant failed,
however, to secure the
nomination and the con-
vention turned to find
a "dark horse." It
chose James A. Gar-
field of Ohio. Chester
A. Arthur of New
York was nominated
for second place.
In the election the
Republicans were suc-
cessful, defeating General Winfield Scott Hancock, the
nominee of the Democrats.
Split in the Republican Party. The Republican factions
worked together during the campaign, but the trouble
broke out afresh when Garfield chose Elaine secretary of
JAMES A. GARFIELD
DEATH OF GARFIELD
state. This was galling to Conkling, and the crisis came
when the President appointed for collector of the port of
New York a friend of Blaine and an enemy of Conkling.
When Conkling found that he could not secure the with-
drawal of the appointment nor prevent its confirmation by
the Senate, he and his colleague, Thomas C. Platt, resigned
from the Senate, ex-
pecting a reelection
by the New York
legislature as a vindi-
cation of their course.
But the legislature re-
fused to reelect them
and chose others to
fill their places.
Death of Garfield.
This incident opened
wide the breach in
the Republican party,
and while the quarrel
was at its height, the
country was thrown
into consternation by
the assassination of
the President, July 2, JAMES G BLAINE
1881. The assassin
was a half-witted disappointed office seeker from New
York, named Guiteau. 1
Mr. Garfield was shot through the body while in a rail-
road station at Washington. He lived for many weeks
1 Guiteau's plea was that it was necessary to " remove " the President in
order to reunite the Republican party. The man was executed. He should
have been sent to an insane asylum.
416 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
through the hot" summer months. In August he was
taken to the seashore, but the change did little good and
on the night of September 19 he died. His body was
carried to Cleveland, Ohio, the beautiful lake city near
which he had been born and had always lived, and there it
was laid to rest.
Some hours before daylight on the morning after Gar-
field's death Chester A. Arthur was sworn into the great
office, in his own house in the city of New York.
No other President in our history has been so slightly
known to the public at the time of his inauguration as was
Arthur. Until his nomination he had been a local poli-
tician in New York, scarcely known outside of the state.
He was not long in the presidential chair until he proved
himself a strong, impartial executive. He would certainly
have been nominated by the Republicans in 1884 but for
the powerful hold of Mr. Elaine on the party.
The Star-route Frauds. In 1881 the attention of the
public was directed to a scandal known as the " Star-route
frauds." These routes were mail lines in the middle West
where mail could not be carried by railroads or steamboats.
They were called "star-route" because a star was placed
on the map to designate the stations. It was found that
high officials of the government, including a United States
senator and one high in the postal department, had con-
spired with the mail-carrying contractors to defraud the
government. Large sums of money had been stolen be-
fore the offenders were discovered and dismissed from the
service. A few of them were put on trial, but no punish-
CIVIL SERVICE REFORM
Civil Service Reform. The spoils system, that is, the
habit of a party on coming into power of turning out of
office all officials that "belonged to the opposite party, had
been in practice for half a century. But the system was
pernicious ; it led men to feel that they were serving their
party rather than their country, or receiving a reward for
party zeal. While Grant was President, an effort was
made to reform the
urged Congress to
continue the work,
but without effect.
At length public
opinion became so
urgent for reform
that Congress was
obliged to heed the
demand. In Janu-
ary, 1883, a bill was
passed to reestab-
lish the Civil Serv-
ice on the merit
system. At first
but few classes
came under the
new law, but later
Presidents have extended the reform until now it includes
nearly every branch of the government service.
There is little else to record of the Arthur administration,
except the Edmunds anti-polygamy law, and a tariff law
enacted in 1883, a sort of compromise measure that pleased
CHESTER A. ARTHUR
41 8 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
In 1 88 1 a great industrial exposition at Atlanta, Georgia,
and another at New Orleans three years later exhibited
the awakening of the New South as nothing had done
A Political Revolution. For twenty-four years the Repub-
lican party had held control of the government ; but in 1884
it lost the election and the presidency passed to its great
rival, the Democratic party.
The Republicans nominated the brilliant leader, James G.
Elaine. But Mr. Elaine had failed to win the confidence of
some of the strong men of the party, notably Henry Ward
Beecher and George William Curtis, with their thousands
of followers. Moreover, Elaine's old enemy, Roscoe Conk-
ling, refused to aid in the campaign and many of his ad-
mirers voted for the Democratic candidate.
The Democrats nominated Grover Cleveland, governor
of New York, who had attracted national attention as
reform mayor of Buffalo. The election was an exceed-
ingly close one. New York was the pivotal state and it
gave Cleveland less than twelve hundred votes over
Elaine. This was enough, however, to decide the great
contest and for the first time since the passing of James
Buchanan the old party of Jefferson and Jackson came
into control of the government.
FIRST ADMINISTRATION OF CLEVELAND, 1885-1889
New Conditions. The old party now restored to power
was in one sense a new party. The majority of voters had
grown to manhood since the war. Old conditions had
passed away and the new conditions called for a new type
of statesmanship. The unfriendly feeling of former years
between the two great sections of the country was greatly
PRESIDENTIAL SUCCESSION LAW
softened and nothing proved this more than the fact that
Mr. Cleveland called to his cabinet two men who had been
commanders in the Confederate armies.
The first bill to which this Democratic President set his
hand was one restoring General Grant to the retired list of
The Presidential Succession Law. The most important
law in the first four years of Cleveland's presidency (aside
from the necessary
bills that every Con-
gress must pass) was
the law to provide for
the presidential suc-
cession. For a long
time - it was felt that
such a law should be
enacted, and the death
in 1885 of Thomas A.
Hendricks, who had
been elected Vice
President on the ticket
with Cleveland, led
Congress to see the
necessity of such a
Before this time the office of President passed to the
president of the Senate and after him to the Speaker of
the House, in case of the death or disability of both Presi-
dent or Vice President But if the Senate and House
were not in session and had not chosen these officers, there
would be a legal lapse of the functions of the office.
All danger of such a condition was removed by the
Presidential Succession Law of January, 1886. By this
420 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
law the succession runs through the Cabinet, beginning
with the secretary of state; the second being the 'secretary
of the treasury, the third the secretary of war, and so on.
The Interstate Commerce Act was passed in 1887. The
object was to prevent the great railroad companies from
discriminating against the small shippers by giving lower
rates to the large shippers. This was usually done by
means of rebates. The law has not been effective in
abolishing rebates though it has been useful in many ways
through the work of the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Among the subjects to attract public attention were a
serious fisheries dispute with Canada, which President
Cleveland succeeded in settling with fair satisfaction to
both sides, and an anarchistic outbreak in Chicago. A
meeting of anarchists was held in Hay market Square in
that city and a band of policemen was sent to disperse
them. A bomb was then thrown amid the officers, and six of
them were killed and many injured. The whole country
was shocked at the outrage. The leaders of the mob were
arrested. Four were hanged and several sent to the
The Famous Tariff Message. President Cleveland be-
lieved that the agitation in the labor world, which had
continued for several years, was caused in part by the
high tariff. The laboring classes, he declared, were not
sharing the benefits of the high tariff with the great manu-
facturers. The President, therefore, devoted his entire
annual message in 1887 to an argument in favor of re-
ducing the tariff and it cost him a reelection to the
The presidential election of 1888 was a close one. The
Republicans nominated Benjamin Harrison, a grandson of
William Henry Harrison whom the Whigs had elected
THE McKINLEY TARIFF
President in 1840. Cleveland received a majority of the
popular vote by 110,000, but Harrison -had a majority in
the electoral college.
The McKinley Tariff. The Republicans had won the
presidency and both houses of Congress with the tariff as
the main issue. The leaders, therefore, interpreted the
election as a man-
date from the peo-
ple to make the
tariff still higher,
and they proceeded
to do so. The
named from its
McKinley of Ohio,
became a law in
August, 1890. It
raised the duties
to an average
above fifty per cent
far higher than
those of any tariff BENJAMIN HARRISON
before the war.
Prices of almost all imported goods were raised. The
people seemed displeased, for in the congressional election
that year the Democrats gained control of the House by a
large majority. *
Dependent Pension Law ; Sherman Silver Law ; Anti-
Lottery. In addition to the McKinley Tariff law several
4 22 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
other important laws were enacted in 1890. Among
them was the Dependent Pension Act. By this law sol-
diers and sailors who had served in the Union army or
navy in the Civil War were entitled to pensions, if unable,
from any cause, to earn a living. There was an immediate
rush to secure pensions and the annual pension outlay,
which was $89,000,000 in 1889, reached the enormous total
of $158,000,000 in 1893.
The Anti-Trust law, for the prevention of great combina-
tions of business corporations, and the Anti-Lottery law
were enacted in the summer of 1890. The latter, aimed
at the Louisiana lottery, forbade the use of the mails for
lottery literature, and it proved very effective. The Anti-
Trust law was not so successful.
The Sherman Silver law dates also from the same session
of Congress. The law was passed in accordance with a
demand from the West for a larger use of silver as money.
It repealed the Bland-Allison law and ordered the purchase
by the government of four and a half million ounces of
silver a month. This law, it was expected, would keep up
the price of silver, but it failed to do so and a few years
later the silver question became the most important one
before the country.
Six new states entered the Union in the years 1889 and
1890. These were North Dakota, South Dakota, Mon-
tana, and Washington in 1889 and Idaho and Wyoming
The population had moved steadily westward from the
East and eastward from the Pacific coast until the vast
Rocky Mountain region had been covered and there was
no longer a frontier. The mountain states were not
thickly settled. There was here and there a mining town,
a cattle ranch, or a community, but so vast was the extent
OKLAHOMA TERRITORY 423
of these Western states that the aggregate population was
Oklahoma territory was opened to white settlers on
April 22, 1889. Fifty thousand people waited at the
border for the bugle call to proclaim the hour o opening,
when they rushed in, many securing farms while others
were not successful, as the demand was greater than the
The congressional elections of 1890 resulted in the
defeat of the Republicans, the Democrats gaining control
of the House by more than a hundred majority. Another
party, the Populist party, had now come into existence, and
so rapid was its growth in the West and South that in
1890 it elected eighteen members to the House and several
The administration, having lost control of Congress,
could pass no more party measures, and therefore there
were few matters of political interest.
In 1891 two affairs connected with our foreign relations
attracted much public attention. One was a dispute with
Chili because of an attack on American sailors in the streets
of Valparaiso in which several were killed. A settlement
was made by the payment by the government of Chili to
the United States of $75,000 indemnity.
The other was the putting to death of eleven Italians
by a mob in New Orleans. These men belonged to a mur-
derous secret society and were supposed to have murdered
the chief of police. Three of them proved to be subjects
of the king of Italy, who demanded that the leaders of the
mob be punished and that an indemnity be paid. The
indemnity ($25,000) was paid by the administration, but
as the state of Louisiana had control of the case, no pun-
424 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
The Election of 1892. President Harrison was nomi-
nated for a second term. The Democratic masses wanted
Cleveland, though the professional politicians in his own
state opposed him. He was nominated on the first ballot,
though every New York delegate voted against him. The
chief issue of the campaign was the McKinley tariff.
The third party of this year, known as the Populist,
or People's party, was unusually formidable. It pronounced
for the free coinage of silver, for an income tax, and for
national ownership of railroads and telegraphs. This party
named James B. Weaver, and the Prohibitionists named
The result of the election was a sweeping victory for
Cleveland. The Senate also became Democratic by a
Useful Inventions. Among the most important inven-
tions since the war are the telephone and the electric light.
The telephone was invented simultaneously by Elisha Gray
of Chicago and Alexander Bell of Boston, both of whom ap-
plied for a patent on the same day and at almost the same
hour. The electric light, invented by Charles F. Brush
and Thomas A. Edison, has innumerable uses, the most
important of which is the lighting of city streets. Among
the hundreds of other inventions since the Civil War are
passenger elevators for high buildings, the typewriter, the
bicycle and automobile, typesetting machines, steam heat-
ing, and artificial ice.
Among engineering achievements are the Brooklyn
bridge, completed in 1883; the Williamsburg bridge, com-
pleted in 1904, both between New York and Brooklyn; the
Eads steel bridge across the Mississippi at St. Louis, and
the construction of the Eads jetty system for deepening
the channel of the river below New Orleans.
One of the first acts of Mr. Hayes on his becoming President was
to withdraw the troops from South Carolina, Florida, and Louisiana,
which had been under military rule since the war.
A great awakening in the business world marked this administration,
the most significant feature of which was the awakening in the South,
which, under its new system of labor, began a wonderful career of
An Anti-Chinese movement on the Pacific coast resulted in a strict
law against Chinese immigration.
The Grangers and Farmers' Alliance, organizations of farmers, became
national in scope during this period.
The election of 1880 resulted in the choice of James A. Garfield for
President. He was shot by an assassin in July, 1881, and died in
September, when Chester A. Arthur was sworn into the office. The
most notable feature of Arthur's administration was the progress made
in Civil Service Reform.
In 1884 Grover Cleveland defeated Mr. Elaine for President, and the
reins of government passed to the Democrats, for the first time in
twenty-four years. The Presidential Succession law was passed in
1886 and the Interstate Commerce Act in 1887.
In December, 1887, Mr. Cleveland devoted his entire message to the
tariff, thus making that the issue in the campaign of the following year,
when Cleveland was defeated by Benjamin Harrison.
Among the important laws passed while Harrison was President
were the Dependent Pension law, the McKinley Tariff, the Anti-Trust
and Anti-Lottery laws.
Two disputes with foreign countries, one with Chili and the other
with the king of Italy, marked the year 1891. In 1892 Mr. Cleveland
was elected a second time to the presidency.
WAR AND EXPANSION
CLEVELAND'S SECOND TERM
GROVER CLEVELAND was our only President to serve
two terms that were not consecutive. The large Republi-
can faction, known as " Mugwumps," who had supported
him was now recognized by the choosing of Walter Q.
Gresham, one of their number, as secretary of state.
Adlai E. Stevenson of Illinois had been elected Vice
The Hawaiian Islands. Hawaii, or the Sandwich Islands,
was a tiny monarchy in the Pacific Ocean, some twenty-
THE HARBOR OF HONOLULU
one hundred miles from San Francisco, with a little more
than one hundred thousand inhabitants.
A number of Americans living on the islands, desiring
to have them annexed to the United States, brought about
a revolution, dethroned the queen, and framed a treaty of
THE PANIC OF 1893
annexation. This was done while Mr. Harrison was Presi-
dent, and he sent the treaty to the Senate. But he went
out of office before that body could act and Mr. Cleveland
withdrew the treaty on the ground that we had no right to
govern the islands unless the Hawaiian people themselves
sought annexation, which he declared they had not done.
The deposed queen, however, was not restored and
Hawaii became a republic. A few years later (July 7, 1 898),
RICE FIELDS IN THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS
when the Cleveland administration had been succeeded by
another, the islands were formally annexed to the United
The Panic of 1893. Scarcely had the administration
begun its career when the finances of the country became
greatly disturbed and there were unmistakable signs of
panic and industrial depression. In the belief that the
repeal of the Sherman Silver law would bring relief, the
428 SCHOOL HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
President called an extra session of Congress to meet in
August, 1893. This law compelled the government to
purchase four and a half million ounces of silver per
month and to pay for it in notes redeemable in gold. The
law was at length repealed, but it was too late to avert the
coming panic, which was the resultant of many causes.
The business of the country was unsettled and hundreds of
manufactories closed their doors, thus throwing thousands
of people out of work. Several years passed before the
business of the country resumed. its normal condition.
The Wilson Tariff. At such a moment it was no doubt
unwise for the Democrats to disturb the tariff; but they
had won the election on this issue and they now proceeded
to frame a new tariff bill. It was called the Wilson Tariff
because framed by William L. Wilson, a leading member
of the House from West Virginia.
By this tariff the average duties of the McKinley Tariff,