Grand Island, NE Speech, 1896-11-02

Speech by William Jennings Bryan.

Speech by William Jennings Bryan
Monday, November 2, 1896 at 10:50am
Open Square, Grand Island, NE

Source: PASSING OF BRYAN, Addresses "You Republicans" with Cursory Generalities, Grand Island Daily Independent, Monday, November 2, 1896

Mr. Bryan took occasion to say that he was glad to visit people in the closing hours of the campaign, the people of the state, which had given him his first opportunity to enter national politics. Whether he was elected on tomorrow or not, might not depend upon Nebraska; however there were instances when the vote was so close. "When we advocate bimetallism in order to restore prosperity, the opposition tells us that commerce is greater than law. In 1873, however, they resorted to law to strike silver down. If they had a right to strike it down by law, we have a right to raise it up by law. If they have the right to decrease the money of the country by law, we have a right to increase it by law." He asked his Republican friends if bimetallism was good, why the St Louis platform had not indorsed it. He might suggest a few things to "you Republicans." They should read the republican platform of 1888, where the financial policy of Grover Cleveland was condemned. ["]If that was bad enough to condemn at that time, is it good enough to uphold now? The gold standard appeals to the man who loves the dollar more than the human race. You ask the laboring man why he is in favor of free silver and he will answer that he believes it to be good for him; ask the farmer why he is in favor of free silver, and he would say that he believes that it would be good for him; ask the business man why he is in favor of free silver and he will tell you it will be good for him; ask the gold standard man, however, why he believes in that standard and his answer will be that it is good for the farmer and laboring man. When some of the gold advocates become troubled with sleeplessness, it is only necessary to advise them to stop worrying about the laboring men and they would be cured.["]

Near the close of his speech, Bryan's eyes fell upon about a dozen yellow badges gathered on top of a bus, and...[he] stat[ed] that the yellow badge was a submission to foreign powers.

About this Document

  • Source: Grand Island Daily Independent
  • Published: Grand Island, NE
  • Citation: 3
  • Date: November 2, 1896