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HARRISON'S ADMINISTRATION.

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ordinary laborer would starve. On this account, Congress considered itself justified in shutting out such a class from a land whose doors have hitherto stood wide open to all the world.

389. Summary. - The principal events of President Cleveland's administration were : (1) The widely extended labor strikes; (2) the Anarchist riot in Chicago; (3) the Charleston earthquake ; (4) the passage of four important laws relating to the succession and the election of the President, Interstate Commerce, and Chinese Immigration.

BENJAMIN HARRISON.

390. Harrison's Administration (Twenty-Third President, 1889- ); Opening of Oklahoma; how Cities spring up in the Far West. — In the centre of Indian Territory there was a large district (now a territory) called, in the Indian language, Oklahoma, or the “Beautiful Land.” This tract was finally purchased from the Indians by the United States early in 1889.

On the 22d of April, of that year, some fifty thousand persons were waiting impatiently on the borders of Oklahoma for President Harrison's 3 signal, giving them permission to enter and

1 As a matter of fact, the law has thus far accomplished less than was expected; since Chinamen come over in large numbers to British America, and then quietly cross the line into the United States. 2 See map of the United States, page 356.

8 Benjamin Harrison was born at North Bend, Ohio, in 1833. He is a grandson of President W. H. Harrison (see Paragraph 281), and his great-grandfather, Benjamin Harrison, was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Mr. Harrison studied law, and opened an office at Indianapolis. In 1862 he entered the Union army as a second lieutenant of Indiana volunteers. Later, he was commissioned colonel of the Seventh Indiana Regiment. Near the close of the war he received the title of brigadier-general of volunteers. In 1880 he was elected United States Senator. In 1888 he was elected President by the Republicans (Levi P. Morton of New York, Vice-President) over Grover Cleveland of New York, and Allen G. Thurman of Ohio, the Democratic candidates.

The chief political issue in the election was the question whether the United States should adopt the Democratic policy of a reduction of tariff, or that of Pro tection advocated by the Republicans.

4 President Harrison's proclamation declared that no one who entered and orcupied lands in Oklahoma before twelve o'clock, noon, of April 22, 1889, should

take up lands in the coveted region. At precisely twelve o'clock, noon, of that day, the blast of a bugle announced that Oklahoma was open to settlement. Instantly an avalanche of human beings rushed wildly across the line, each one eager to get the first chance. Towns made of rough board-shanties and of tents sprang up in all directions. The chief of these were Oklahoma City and Guthrie. At the end of four months, the latter had a population of about five thousand, with four daily papers and six banks; and arrangements, doubtless since completed, were being made to start a line of street cars, and light the city with electricity.

391. The Celebration of the Washington Centennial; the Johnstown Disaster. - A week after the opening of Oklahoma, the centennial anniversary of the inauguration of Washington,' and of the beginning of our government under the Constitution, was celebrated in New York City. The celebration (April 29 to May 1, 1889) began with a military review by President Harrison ; and closed, on the third day, with a grand procession of all the trades and industries of the chief city of America.

In a little less than a month from that occasion, the most terrible disaster of the kind ever known in our history occurred (May 31, 1889) in Western Pennsylvania. By the breaking of a dam, a body of water forty feet high and nearly half a mile in width swept down through a deep and narrow valley. In less than fifteen minutes, the flood had traversed a distance of eighteen miles. In that brief time, it dashed seven towns out of existence, and ended by carrying away the greater part of Johnstown. The whole valley at that place was choked with ruins; at least five

be permitted to acquire rights to lands there by such entrance and occupation. This was what kept the “boomers," as they were called, back.

1 See Paragraphs 196 and 199.

2 The centennial celebration of the framing of the Constitution by the Constitutional Convention, in 1787, was held at Philadelphia, September 15-17, 1887.

In 1888, Ohio celebrated the hundredth year of the first settlements made at Marietta, Cincinnati, and other points; and a grand exhibition - open for four months — was held at Cincinnati, to show the results of the century's progress.

OUR NEW SHIPS OF WAR.

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thousand persons lost their lives, and property worth ten million dollars was utterly destroyed.

392. The Congress of the Three Americas; the Admission of Six New States; Our New Ships of War. - In the autumn (October 2, 1889), representatives of the leading governments of Central and of South America, together with the Republic of Mexico, met representatives chosen by the United States in a conference or congress held at Washington. The object of the congress was to bring about a closer union of the Americas, for purposes of trade, and of mutual advantage. The delegates spent six weeks in visiting the principal commercial and manufacturing cities of the United States. They then returned to Washington, and devoted the greater part of the remainder of the year and part of 1890 to the discussion of business.

Early in November (1889), the President, by proclamation, admitted the four new states of Montana, Washington, North Dakota, and South Dakota ? to the Union. Their representatives met with the next national Congress in December. The addition of these states made the whole number in the Union forty-two.

These forty-two states desired to be properly represented on the ocean. Many of the vessels comprised in the United States navy were simply old, worn-out wooden ships, utterly unworthy of the country. Congress resolved to replace them with a number of first-class steel vessels. The work was pushed through with great energy, and in November (1889), a squadron of magnificent war-steamers was formed, composed of the Chicago, Atlanta, Boston, and Yorktown. Under the new United States flag, with

1 The following countries were represented at the conference, popularly called the “ Pan-American Congress ” (from Pan, a Greek word, meaning all) : 1. Hayti; 2. Nicaragua; 3. Peru; 4. Guatemala; 5. Uruguay; 6. Colombia; 7. Argentine Republic; 8. Costa Rica; 9. Paraguay; 10. Brazil; 11. Honduras; 12. Mexico; 13. Bolivia; 14. Venezuela; 15. Chili; 16. Salvador; 17. Ecuador; 18. the United States. The total number of representatives was sixty-six.

2 The Act of Congress providing for their admission was passed under President Cleveland (1888).

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