The courier. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1894-1903, August 17, 1901, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

3 . "Vv"-"
Office 1132 N street, Up Stairs.
Telephone 384.
Tra Coumk will not be responsible for to!
nntary communications miles accompanied by
return pottage. ,
Communications, to receire attention, most
be thrned by tbe (nil name of the writer, not
merely a a guarantee of rood faith, bnt for
publication if adfisable.
cramped, irregular band, and was
ever unpopular with the copy readers.
When he was yet at Cornell he had
conceived the idea of writing a naval
history. He had a little money when
he left the university, and he went
abroad for data for the proposed
work. He searched the libraries of
France and Germany for points that
would help him in this work.
One day McClay awakened in his
absorbing pursuit to find himself in
the interior of Germany with just
enough money to pay his passage to
Subscription Rates. New York. He had three days in
Per annum II 50 which to get the steamer, and many
Six months 100 miles to cover. How to live without
Rebate of fifty cents on cash payments. eating for those three days, was a
Single copies 05 question; how to get to the coast was
another. He stowed himself away on
a boat, loaded with unroasted coffee,
going down the Rhine. He cut holes
in the coffee bags and lived on the
unroasted beans till he reached sea
But in spite of his three days' fast,
McClay had developed a taste for
German cooking; and while he was on
tbe staff of the Tribune he always
patronized a little German restaurant
around tbe corner. On the continent
lie had formed frugal habits, and he
dined often on beer and rye bread.
He saved what he could from his sal
ary by cutting himself off from bis
colleagues, and by allowing himself
only the bare necessities of life. His
naval history was all that mattered
much to him; he believed it to be
worth every effort and sacrifice, as
the libraries of America or Europe
contained nothing of the kind worth
In '94 McClay went from the Tri
bune to the Sun. On the staff of the
latter he acted as reporter for the
navy yard. At this time he was at
work on the second volume of bis
history. He began to doubt his abili
ty to write it even in a readable style.
He took tbe first volume to several of
his old friends on the Tribune, and
they read it over and pronounced it
well worth while. This gave him
courage to take it up again with new
vigor. A short time ago McClay was
given a clerical position in the navy
yard, which lie has since held.
So far as Admiral Schley is con
cerned, this so called expose is the
most fortunate thing that could have
happened to him. The whispered
in Washington
for the last two years must have slain
his self-respect altogether, had he
beard them. The court of inquiry
granted him will give him an op
portunity to silence gossip by one
means or another. If he cannot dis
pose of McClay's charges, he can at
least give bis own motives the best
possible presentation; and even pub
lic disgrace would be less objectiona
ble than the social slights and thrusts
that have been inflicted upon him.
The actual wording of McClay's
charge is as follows, the extracts be
ing taken from various parts of the
Schley's Accuser.
Mr. Edgar S. McClay who exploded
a mine in tbe Navy department by
his charges against Admiral Schley,
seems to have followed the French
editor's advice: ''Say something bad
enough about any one who is great,
and tomorrow you will be as great as
he is."
Certainly tbe public at large bad
never heard of Mr. McClay until he
gathered together all tbe whispered
gossip and covert charges against
Schley and threw them in the face of
the public. Mr. McClay's personal
characteristics as told by a fellow
journalist make him out a character
stolen somewhere from the pages of
Balzac. His life seems to have been
a conflict between inclinations and
ambitions; and that was tbe warfare
the great, novelist loved to chronicle.
McClay is the son of a clergyman
and is about thirty-nine years o'd.
He is under the average height, but
of sturdy build. He is persistent and
stubborn in character.
While at work on tbe first volume
of his naval history, McClav was a
reporter on the New York Tribune.
At that time there were nine sons of
clergymen on the Tribune: and Mc- charges against him
Clay, like all of them, was fond of
staying up in the morning after his
work was done. But he at last de
cided that, as he had a life work
ahead of him, he should practice
economy. In order to divert his
mind into another channel, he had a
piano installed in bis room; and there,
instead of chasing about town witii
his colleagues, he would drum for
It was hard work for McClay to
write. Words came to him slowly;
and pen or pencil seemed always for
eign to his hand. He wrote a small, history
"Schley, on May 28, 189S, sullied the
brightest of American mottoes by
'Much to be regretted, cannot obey
orders,' and turned in caitiff flight
from the danger spot toward which
duty, honor and the whole American
people were most earnestly urging
"Viewed in whatever light it may
be, the foregoing dispatch cannot be
characterized otherwise than as be
ing, without exception, the most hu
miliating, cowardly and lamentable
report ever penned by an American
naval officer."
As to the reconnoissance of Santi
ago, Historian McClay says:
'This timid and nerveless attack
on Cervera's ships is the more disap
pointing when we remember tbe
elaborate and brave preparations
Schley had made to 'get at the enemy'
in earnest.
"Schley's farcical blockade cannot
be described otherwise than as will
ful disobedience of orders."
As to the "loop" of the Brooklyn,
McClay comments as follows:
"Schley hastily ordered the helm
aport. 'But that will carry us into
tbe Texas.' said the officer. 'Let the
Texas take care of herself,' was the
heartless reply; and the shameful
spectacle of an American war ship,
supported by a force superior to tbe
enemy's a war ship whose command
er bad expended such vast quantities
of ammunition on target practice in
the presence of a fashionable hotel at
Hampton Roads in order to meet a
worthy foe deliberately turning tail
and running away was presented.
"Cervera nobly threw down the
gauntlet. Schley cravenly declined
to pick it up."
A Tragedy of Environment.
The tragedy of an unfortunate en
vironment was never more strongly
exemplified than in the life of the
late Dowager Empress of Germany.
Probably no woman in Europe was
ever more cordially disliked, and cer
tainly no woman ever died anywhere
so bereft of human affections. Yet
Auguste Victoria possessed nearly all
those qualities which made her moth
er happy, beloved, and a great sover
eign. The difference was that one
lived in England and ruled an em
pire, and the other lived in Germany
and sat for nearly fifty years upon the
steps of a throne.
When Auguste Victoria married
the crown prince Frederick at seven
teen, she was almost as popular in
England as her mother had been as a
young queen. Her physical resem
blance to her mother was remarkable.
She had either inherited, or acquired
by association, Victoria's passion for
politics, her policy of speaking out
her mind, her intellectual activity,
and her parsimonious frugality.
Had she remained in England there
is no reason why she might not have
retained the devotion of the English
people; but, as the German Chancel
lor said, views that were safe enough
tn a compact and settled kingdom
like England were heresy in unform
ed Prussia.
Almost immediately upon her ar
rival in Germany she contracted the
relentless hatred of the two greatest
powers in the German Empire: Bis
marck and tbe Emperor William.
She never succeeded in diminishing
it; and there is good reason to believe
that she never tried.
One thing has been particularly
marked about every ruler of the Han
ovarian house; they were never known
to modify in large or small degree
the personality that they happened
to be born with. He that was unjust
continued to be unjust; still and he
that was righteous was righteous still.
Having once put their hand to any
sort of plow, they never turned back.
Possibly it was this sublime stub
bornness more than any other one
quality that endeared their foreign
monarch to the English people.
George tbe Third had perhaps a bet
ter opportunity to exhibit this trait
of the Guelph character tban any of
his successors; but his son was as
persistent in the paths of folly as bis
father wa3 in tbe paths of difficult
and ur.discriminating virtue, and he
gambled with the same unreasoning
obstinacy with wbicb his father pros
ecuted the colonial wars.
Having declared herself a Demo
crat and stated her views on political
economy when she first went into
Germany, Auguste never retracted.
Through the storm of bitterness and
hatred that followed her year after
year and even to the schloss where
she weut to die, she bore herself with
a certain grim satisfaction. Any sort
of material loss was easier for a
Guelph to hear than a concession of
Remarkably well educated herself,
she sought to procure for the women
of Prussia the same privilege. She
endowed scholarships for women in
several of the universities and openly
advocated the principles of John Stu
art Mill.
"The English Woman,' said Bis
marck, "is not only a rights-of-man-womau,
but a rights-of-woman wo
man, which is worse. It is red revo
lution enthroned in Berlin, it is trea
son crowned.'" The Chancellor held"
a heated interview with the Princess
in which he declared to her that for
the best Interests of her Prussian
subjects it was absolutely necessary
that she break off her correspondence
with the English philosopher, whose
friend and pupil she had been for
Germany is essentially a domestic
nation, and the nation which take
the liberty to interfere with the most
personal matters jn the lives of its
rulers. Irritated by their petty criti
cisms on trivial matters, the Princess
once called her new subjects "a na-