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About The independent. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1902-1907 | View Entire Issue (Oct. 8, 1903)
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"o Vol. XV.
LINCOLN NEB., OCTOBER 8, 1903.
A Word with the Famier
Why He Should Help
Elect Judge Sullivan to
the Supreme Denoh.
There is just one issue in this cam
paign, it is the agricultural interest
against the trusts and the railroads.
There may be side issues, but they all
finally verge in this one. Take the new
revenue law which is producing so
much discussion throughout the state.
That is a question of whether farmers
shall pay all the. increased taxation
necessary to pay off the state debt,
which has increased so fast since the
republicans got back into power, or
the railroads shall pay their just pro
portion of it. The effect of that law
will not be felt until next year, but
the farmers, after they begin to pay
their taxes, will see what it means.
Under the new law, no one has a word
to say about what the railroads shall
pay except a few state officers whom
the railroads hope to select in ad
vr nee of conventions and then elect
The thing that presses now is the
exactions of tht meat trust. Cattle
men stand on the verge of bankruptcy
today. The price of cattle is sue?
that it means loss to the producer.
The men who generally feed cattle are
a i sea. They don't know what to offer
feeders. They say that feeding cat
tle now is as uncertain as gambling
In stocks. The meat trust buyers meet
every night and fix the price of cat
tle for the next day. If they fix at a
losing rate for the cattle man he ships
to another place, tin buyers there are
informed in advance, and he is offered
a still lower price. The feeder, there
fore, if he does not want to risk
bankruptcy, must buy his feeders on a
very wide margin. The loss falls on
-the cattle raiser. " ' ' '
?The railroad rates on cattle have
Leon largely increased during the last
three or four years. What is paid the
railroads in extra freight charges
comes out of the men who raise cattle.
The city dweller is about equally in
terested in this i usiness for notwith
standing the fall .in the price of cattle
vhere has been no rednctfon:In the
retail price of meat. We are paying
now as much or more for meat than,
we did when cattle were at the highest
; From this condition there arises two
opposing interest".. On the one side is
the farmer and the city consumer and
or: the other side are the railroads and
tlie trusts. The railroads have just
as good a right to go into this cam
paign and elect their man if they can,
as th farmer and city consumer have
to elect their man. The railroads are
ii. politics and have a right to be there.
They will fight fcr their own interests
and have a right to fight for them
There is no sense in denying it. The
farmers and city consumers should
also go into polit cs and fight for their
interests. That is what The Indepen
dent advises them to do. Vote for
their, own interests.
Not only are the cattle men inter
ested in this fight, but the grain rais
ers as well. The railroads aivl (ho
elevators are in a combination to ri (
the farmers on the price of their
grain. There is a desperate ecrt Le
ing made by the farmers to get ele
vators of their own. In a few places
they have succeeded, but after thy
get their elevato they have no means
of finding out how much rebates the
. trust elevators get. Out at one town
the farmers bought an old mill site to
which a side track. ran, b'lilt an ele
vator and filled it with grain. When
they wanted to ship it, the railroad
refused to put the cars on that side
track and the farmers had to run the
wheat into wagors, haul it over to the
other track and shovel it into the
cars. I aw suits concerning such mat
ters will come up to the supreme court
for adjudication, and the reads have
stinted a man, who for fifteen yeprs
served them faithfully as an attor
ney, .to decide such cases for thm
when thev Y' that court. As thpy
pav their attorneys bv the year and it
costs them b"1 little, thev tai-e most
of the cases that po to the supreme
co'irt. If thev lnve that court, they
havd the whole thing.
There is nothlne in this canmien
but this contt between the interests
of the aericltiri3ts and the interpsts
of the railroads and eWa for .trust.
That i3 all thre is to it. The mm
who has not sense enoueh to vote and
nork for his own interest instead of
: - , h ' 4. ; .
that of the great corporations which
exploit him should pay the bill with'
out grumbling whtn pay-day comes.
On which side of this contest are
you going to enlist?
Why does Roscoe Pound, dean of the
college of law, by the grace .(or dis
grace) of populist and democratic re
gents, receive from the Lincoln Trac
tion company free transportation?
What possible advantage can he be to
the traction company, how that he has
resigned as member of the supreme
court commission? It is not difficult
to surmise why Judge Pound should
be given those useful little books of
yellow (free) tickets but why should
Dean Pound continue to receive and
use them? A round trip each 'day
saves him $3 a month tar fare $36 a
year, or enough to buy a fairly de
cent tailor-made suit. Why shouldn't
the traction company buy himNa suit
of clothes, if his salary as dean is
inadequate, and let him pay his car
fare? Saunders County
Saunders county assessors in 1903
made an increase of $192,243 in the as
sessed valuation of the property of
farmers and . business men of that
county, over the figures for, 1902. The
Twelve years - ago the American
Nonconformist, then published at Win
field, Kas.; prepared a reform press di
rectory which was published in the
columns of that paper. The Noncon
formist was then 12 years old and was
conducted by H. & L. Vincent; later it
was removed to Indianapolis,' where it
finally passed into the hands of Prof.
C. Vincent, . who some , years ago
brought it to Omaha. Later Prof. Vin
cent changed its name to the Central
Farmer, and quite recently.it was con
solidated with the Farmers'' Advocate
A copy of this directory, clipped
from the Nonconformist of Isome time
in May, 1891, is in possession of The
Independent, by courtesy Of Thomas
Davis, of Macon, 111., one of the Old
Guard. There are the names of some
thing like 500 populist papers, a con
siderable number of which are in ex
istence today, notwithstanding the as
sertion that the populist press has been
annihilated. It is the intention of The.
Independent to use this list as the
basis for compiling an up-to-date di
rectory of present-day populist papers,
aim as far as possible to trace the his
tory of those named in the list of
1891 which have suspended, removed,
or changed name or politics. .
A marked copy of the issue contain
ing this' notice will be mailed to the
It is generally believed that the rail
roads selectd John B. Barnes to rep
resent them on tlu supreme bench, just
as John N. Baldwin and his railroad
conferees selected "Our Man Mickey"
some eight days prior to the republi
can state convention last year, and
that the republican convention of 1903
submitted even more 'meekly to rail
road domination than did its predeces
sor. However this may be, one need
go no further than the ofScial records
to determine where each of the" oppos
ing candidates for supreme judge
stands in the grand contest between
the people on the one hand and the
railroads on the other. The agricul
tural interests of Nebraska have never
asked anything but simple justice, and
they have always given heed to the
cry, "Don't do anything to hurt the
railroads; they are a good thing
they build up the country." Strange
to say the farmers have kfipt'this in
People vs. Railroads
republican state board made an in
crease of $1,900.51 in the assessed val
uation of railroad property. In other
words, for every hundred dollars of
increase made by the assessors, the
state board added less than a dollar to
the railroad valuation. Last year the
rate of state tax on' Saunders county
was iyz mills, making a total of $26,
202.07 in state taxes charged against
her. This was divided as follows:
Railroads $ 4,108.75
The railroads thus .; were charged
with 15.6 per cent of the taxes in Saun
ders county in 1902. This year the
rate is 92 mills, to provide funds for
republican extravagance, making a
state tax charge against Saunders of
$35,033.65, divided as follows:
Railroads ...$ 5,222.47
And this time the railroads are
charged with only 14.8 per cent of the
taxes. The; increase in railroad taxes
this year is 27.1 per cent; In farmers'
taxes, 34.9 per cent. Same railroads;
same farms! And in a county where
the populists stayed at home, allowing
the republicans to capture the county,
because "there was nothing to vote for
in the campaign of 1902." That corn
shucking election day cost them over
$7,700 in additional state taxes to say
nothing of count: taxes and the end
is not yet. Wait till the new, revenue
law gets to working! .
A Proposed History
The Populist Press.
Nonconformist list of 1891.' The edi
tors of The Independent would appre
ciate the courtesy of a reply from the
person whose hands the marked copy
reaches, with' the following informa
tion: : " , ... . ; 'v '
Present name of paper, , postofflce,
county, and state; present size and
whether "all home" or ready print;
day of publication; subscription price
by the year; approximate circulation;
volume, number and date of latest is
sue; present owner, present editor,
and present political policy of the
In addition to this, the editors of
The Independent would appreciate the
history of the paper, following this
rUai: When originally established;
under what name; by whom as pro
prietor and as editor. Then note all
changes of name, ownership, editor
ship, and editorial policy, giving ap
proximate dates as far as possible.
If the response3 to this warrant it.
The Independent may decide to com
pile, a history of populist journalism
fr.-- the benefit of the reform press
n eeting which will doubtless be called
for St. Louis in February next year.
Bj following the general plan outlined
anove, a great saving of time will be
effected for the compiler. Address all
communications to this prolect to
Directory Dept. Lincoln, Neb.
Where the Two Candi
date Stand A Leaf frcm
mind to the extent of forgetting that
they themselves were of any moment
in the building up of a state.
Railroad interests never want Jus
tice. They are not looking for that.
They must have the under hold every
time. With a farmers' judge on the
bench, the railroada always get jus
tice; with a railroad judge, the farm
ers always : get injustice and the
railroads profit by it. One has only
to read the various court reports to
learn the truth of this.
John J. Sullivan, the populist candi
date for supreme judge, is at present
chief justice of the Nebraska supreme
court, having served almost six years.
His republican, opponent. John B.
Barnes for some fifteen years a rail
road attorney was appointed mem
ber of the supreme court commission
to succeed Judge Sedgwick. As com
missioner, Judge Barnes writes opin-
ions in cases argued before the depart-
ment of which he is a member. These
come before the supreme court after
ward for adoption or rejection, it
adopted by two of the supreme judges
the commissioner's opinion ' becomes -decisive.
The case of C, B. & Q. R. R. Co. vs.
Martelle, 91 N. W. Hep. 364, shows ex
actly where the two candidates stand
ic the inevitable and irreconcilable
conflict which is constantly going on
between the people and the railroads.
There is no miuatving Judge Barnes
predilection in favor of the railroad;
there is no mistaking Judge Sullivan's
attitude in favor of tne people. Let
us investigate this cape: '
E. H. Martelle had on January 9,
1898, bought a ticket and boarded a "
freight train at ochuyler, Neb., bound
for Edholm in Butler county. When
the train reached Edholm it slowed up,
but did not stop. Martelle, fearful. of .
being carried to the next station,
jumped otf, and was injured. He sued
for $5,000 damages. The case was tried"
before Judge Bates in tne district court
of Butler county. TL3 jury awarded
him $3,500; and, of-course, the rail
road company brought the case on er
ror to the supreme court. . ,
It, was assigned for hearing, to de
partment number 24 and upon Com-
missioner Barnes devc.ved writing the
opinion. Commissioner Pound con
'curred, and Commissioner Oldham dis
sented, each in a separate opinion. ;
When It reached the supreme court, '
Judges Sedgwick and Holcomb ap
proved the Barnes opinion, while
Judge Sullivan held .with Commis
sioner Oldham and filed a dissenting
opinion. In this dissenting opinion'
Judge Sullivan says: ,v , ,'
"In any view of the case, I think
the trial court did not err in submit-,
ting the question of contributory neg
ligence .to , the jury-JTJisrjEi, was, of
course, some risk in getting off the .
train while in motion, but the act
was not so obviously rash and fool
hardy :' as to amount necessarily to
criminal neglige :ce. ; ;
""Criminal negligence is a conven
ient phrase to indicate that the de
gree of care required by the passenger
is small. As defined by this court, it,
means such 'gross negligence as
amounts to a reckless disregard of
one's own safety, and willful indiffer- s
ence to(the consequence liable to fol
low.' "In my judgment, It was for the jury
to determine, from its knowledge of
men and of the moilyes that influ-
ence and control human conduct whe
ther the act of the plaintiff was, un
der all the circumstances, within the
definition , quoteu. To . ' say that a
strong, active and experienced man,
who, to r void being carried beyond his
destination, gets off a slowly moving
train,-or a train moving with small
velocity, is in every case foolishly
heedless of consequences, and will-
fully indifferent to his personal safety,
is to assert what every man accus- '
tomed to travel knows from his own
experience and observation to be un
true. . . ,
"I readily concede that, from the
facts which the evidence in the rec
ord tends to prove, criminal negli
gence might be ' reasonably inferred,'
but I deny that the inference ' is a ,
necessary and itevit one. If the
plaintiff had not attempted to alight,
and had gone on to the next station,
I think his conduct would be generally
regarded as unusual. It would prob
ably stamp him inv the opinion of
most people- as overcautious and
somewhat deficient in ordinary cour
age. "It would perhaps be better that pas
sengers should submit to the incon-.
venience of being carried beyand their"
destination, rather than tai-e the
chance of being injured by alighting
from a moving train; but we are deal
ing now with conditions, and not with
"It is a quest! -m of what men act
ually do In the s.tuation in which the
plaintiff was placed by "the fault of
the company's servants, not what the
theorists think they ought to do.
"It seems to mi perfectly phin that
the criterion by which the plaintiff's "
conduct has been tried in this court
Is a false criterion.
"The standard man set up by the
majority (Barnes, Pound, Sedgwick,
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