- ›› Coverage People : William Jennings Bryan
Glossary Term – Person
Mary Elizabeth Lease (1853–1933) was a Populist Party organizer and orator. Lease became recognized in the early 1890s as a Populist Party speaker in Kansas and served as a delegate to the party’s national convention in 1892, where she seconded the presidential nomination of James B. Weaver. She toured with Weaver’s campaign in the West and with other Populist speakers in the South, reportedly urging farmers to “Raise less corn and more hell!” Lease vehemently opposed the Populist Party’s connection to the Democratic Party, and after the...
Glossary Term – Person
William Jennings Bryan (1860–1925) was a Democratic politician from Nebraska whose support for free silver, income tax, and other reforms won him the support of the Populist Party. Bryan was elected to the US House of Representatives in 1890, and in 1896 he was nominated for president after delivering his “Cross of Gold” speech at the Democratic convention. Though he had the backing of the Democratic Party, the Populist Party, and free silver Republicans, Bryan lost the election by a large margin to William McKinley. Bryan ran and lost...
These cartoons illustrate the growing hostility toward the practices of big business.
For our business interests, we desire to bring producers and consumers, farmers and manufacturers into the most direct and friendly relations possible. Hence we must dispense with a surplus of middlemen, not that we are unfriendly to them, but we do not need them. Their surplus and their exactions diminish our profits....We are opposed to excessive salaries, high rates of interest, and exorbitant per cent profits in trade. They greatly increase our burdens, and do not bear a...
As the United States evolved into an industrial powerhouse in the decades following the Civil War, the growing strength of the railroads and the banks particularly, coupled with the impact of mechanization on agricultural practices, challenged the financial stability of American farmers in ways never before experienced. The late 1860s saw the birth of the Grange (a.k.a. the National Grange of the Patrons of Husbandry), an organization dedicated to the social and political uplift of farmers. Throughout the...