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The Farmers In Convention

The Farmers In Convention image
Parent Issue
Day
21
Month
October
Year
1880
Copyright
Public Domain
OCR Text

A Convention of farmers, mado up of representativos from sevonil lnindrcd (iranger Bad other organizations, was held in Chicago 0:1 the 14th of Octobor. There were about ttaree bundrcd dclcsrates in attondunce. Matt Anderson (Wlsoonsfn) was chosen President; L. Prince (Massachusetts), W. J. Fowlcr (New York), A. B. Smith (Kentucky), Mllton Goorgo (Illinois), J. E. Cobbey (Iowa), and J. J. Fuss (Michigan), Vice-Presidents; Jonathan Periara, J. M. Chambers and W. W. Corbett (Illinois), Secretarios. Mr. Pingreo, of Illinois, read an essay on 'Cheap and Hapid Transportation." He urgod that the greut drawback to the advoiicement of tbe producer was the high freight rates of railways. In order to have the people prosper, chcap transportation must be adopted by Mms means. The remedy was the constructiou by the Government of a railway to carry exolusively fréight from tho grain-growing States of the West to the scaboard. Mr. Kowler, of New York, was called on for ftn address, and tolil about tho organization of the New York Farmers' Allianec, whieh waa formed threo years ago. lt was not poiitieal in a National tense, fhough it marte a flght regardlng transportaron and taxatlon, only supporting those candidatos for the State Legis'iiture who were in ftccord with the obJects of the Association. Mueh had alieady been accomplished, and next year they expected to have a Legislatura which would enact luws in the interest of the farmers, wbose iiiterests were those of the peoplo. That they did notgettbeir fair share of the wenlth they prodnoed was owing to the nog:lect of their polltical dutits. They should orffanlze to secure theirrights. After they had obtaincd the transportaron reforms deraanded, and secured equality of assessment and taxation, thore still remained tho necessity of some poiitieal organization of farmers os farmers to opérate upon both parties to check them in their extravagance, which led to corruptlon. The followlngpreambleandresolutions were report od taan eommittee and, after discussion, unanimously adopted: '1 liw Con vent li n, rep eseatlog the Industria and shippiug Interests, Onosaa, Karmers' Clubs ana nlllances, allirms as Incontrovertible faets that the railroad system of this country has beoome a virtual monopoly which is defiant of all existinjr luw bearinir npon the management of laliways, oppressive alike to the producer and eonsumor, corrupt intf to our politics, a hindrance to f ree and impartial legislation, and a menace to the very satvty of our republican institutions; that our railroad Corporation, Wtallfi having seoured an existenc" and thelr fronchises thiough the pleabfbetag neces3ary for the public good, and in tho belief on ;hr part of the people's representatlvea that the public good dcinanded it, hu inir been granted the right of way througb public and private property. are operating their roads as an cntirely private enterprise, without regard to the rights of the people, and heedl ss of their plcdges to, and contract with, Ibe State; that they have been aldcd in the construction of their roads by the Government, in public land grants, and subsidies and loans, aggrtgating in value over a billion and a half of dollars, and by town and individual subBcriptions to an amount wnieh eannot be acrurately asoertaincd, but is known to aggregatc hundreds of uiillion3, and that hlthough no part of the principal and nol a penny of the interest has ever in a single instance been paid, these corpomtions utterly ignore the enormous assessment with which the people have thns vuhnnarily burdened theiuselves in thcir behalf, and assume the rigbt to imposo rates tor frcigtit and passenger transportal Ion as il' the roads had been whtïily constructed by the eontributlons of their individual members; that their publicly-announced principies of business is to charge a raio as high as the business will bear, wnich means that freight tariffs shall bo maintained at just as hlgti a figure as will not makc the shipment of farm produce and merchandise absolutely objectlcss - a principie so unjust and tyrannieal that those engaxed in private business enterprises would not daré adopt it; that they compelthe producer and sbipper to contribute sumolent topay larjre dividends not only upon the fair valué of the bona flde stock, but also upon the full value of large and repoated issues of waterod8tock; that they organizo withln themidlTestndepondeiil oompanlefl - which manage what are csilod fast fie.güt Unes- to do the bUSlneSB which thcjr wcre tjrganized to do, and tbus are euubled lo assess ihe publio to pay dividends to two coinpanics, wben one ooulú do the business; that theydiscriminateagainst indiiluals and communities, assuinín thc powcr, and using it niostdisastrously at tinií-s. to ruin a merenant. ora meroantlleor t'arniiug oommunlty; t:ai these corporations have gmwn so arrogant that they refuseto listen to eltber remonstranoes or intreaties, and that Siate log8lation is wholly Inoperative to tbwiirt their desiitns or to enforce tbe right of the publip. In view of these siartling faets, and ín acconluuce with the decisión oí the Supremo Court oí' tho United States, alhrniing the riíiht of the peopLe to regúlate the management of and charges upoa i ailioads, tbis Convention resol ves; 1. Thiit the producers and snippers of this countiy in their contest with tue railroad monopoly desire only what is right, that they cli'iiiunil hal , aud th-it they will have it. . Tliat while agiieulture pays less than four Eer cent. upon the investnient, and legitímate usinoss enterprises ol: any oharactcr seldom rcach ten per cent., wo will not pay rates tor the traiisportation of the produce oí our farms to market which euable railroad oüicials to amasa princely fortunes, live in extravagance, and pay large dividends upon the fair vulueuf their stock, besides saving enough from the protits of their business to make improvements and extensions upon their Unes wbich at e of ten more valuable than tbe aggregate of l'uil dividends. . We demand of Conirress a remedy; that it shull place tbe railroads of tbo country under Government control, ouacting laws that will ccrtainly protect the producer frora thc terrible extortton under which be has so long suffered, and we will hold our Kepresentatives in the Natiunal Legislatura to a strict accountability for thelr actlon in the premisos, pledglng ouiselves and our constttueucy to exert omsolves to the utmost to defeat the re-electiou of any man to any Legislativo or Kxccutivc oflice who does not actlvely favor in hls oflicial capacity the subjugation of railroad corporations to the will of the people. 4. We il -mand of our respective poiitieal parties that hereafter they shall nomínate for the State l-eglslature and for Congress only such men as are In sympathy with the industrial and commercial Interests, and who, it eleeted, will work and vote to place the production upon an equal footinjr with monopolies of every character; and if our respective partios neglect to do this, wo plcdge ourselves tousoevery honorable means to defeat the candidatos wbicb they present for our suffraice. 5. We congratúlate theOrange and Farmers' Clubs upon what they have done to emancípate the labor of tbe farm from slavisli drudgery to monopolies, and arte themto i continuance of tbolr noble work, which has been so effective in tbe cducation of thc masses, and sucb an ob-itacle to olass leglslatlon. 6. We bid a welcomo and godspeod to tho Farmers' Alltance, which Joins hands with the Grange and Farmors' Clubs in dcinanding these reforma which are requisito tor the prosperity of the farmer and of the country. 7. We pledge our support to those journals which shall support UB, and urge upon tarínersthe recognition of the duty to support no paper which is not outspoken in our interests. THR ALI.IASCE. After the adjournment of the Convention a mimber of deleiiates remained in thc hall and organized a National Alliance. The eonstitution adopted seta forth that tho "National Farmers' Alliance of the United States" should have power to makc laws for the gov ernment of the entiro organizatlon. The ot Jectg wcro: To unite the farmers of the United States for their protection against class leglslatlon and the eneroaehments of concentrated capital and the tyrauny of monopoly; to provide against betug imposed upon by swindlers and swlndling advertisements in tho public prints; to oppose in their respective political parties the electlon of any candidate to olTloe, state or National, who was uot thorot'ghly in sympathy with the farmers' interests ; to demand that the existlng polltical parties should nomínate Mamen or thoso who were in sympathy with them for all otllces within the gift or the people; and to do anthinji in a legitímate manner that mlght serve to benellt the producer. Tbe following ofiicers woro eleeted bf the Alliance: President, Wllliam J. Fowleï (New York), Vioe-Presldent, L. 8. Coffln (Iowa), Socreta-y, James W. Wilson (Illinois.v, Treisurer, Matt Anderson (Wisoonsin). Af tuf speeches by several doleatos the AlliandO adjourned until tho first Wednesday after tb first Monday of Oetober, 1S81, to meet W Chicago. - Considerable devastation has bee.i wronght, dlirkig the last three vean, in geyeral agricultura] listriots oí central Germany, by the hamster, or marmot. Ín tlie district of Aschersleben, two jnean ago, neariy 80,000 marmots were caught and killed cm the municipal estates alone, comprising some iO.000 morgen of lamí ander cultivation. Last avitunni the trappers sueeeeded in e;ipturing 83.000 odtl, but the nuisance has reappeared in greater forcé than ever this autumn, and it is feared thai nothing short of wholesale cremation. intlicled uñón the sirface of the municipal domains, will rid them of the pest. - In 1864 a vvealthy Baptist gave thu Baptist Publication Society $10,000 for a permailent library fund, the interest to be used n ftímishing librariee to need Sunday schools. The accumulation of the fund h:is yieldfid 89,000, and í,70"2 poov ai.'huiils bftve been suppiied with librarles. -Spain, with only 17,000,000of inliabitants. turns out yearly twice as raueli wheat as does ltály with 8,000,000 of iohabitants.

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Subjects
Old News
Ann Arbor Democrat