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					     PROGRESSIVISM              The Ram's Horn, 4 April 1896

1. Rising middle class of
   urban professionals
2. Agrarians
3. Social reformers

1. Good government
2. End corrupt politics
3. Improve rural life
4. Curtail the influence of
   large corporations
5. "Purify" society
6. Reform: prison, education,
   welfare, suffrage

1. Efficient bureaucracy
2. Public education
Texas progressivism differed from previous reform movements
1. Unlike Radical Reconstruction it was an indigenous
2. Unlike Populism, it operated within the Democrat party.
3. It happened in era where suffrage was being restricted.

All progressives considered recent immigrants and uneducated
   Americans as a threat to the middle class. "Consequently,
   they saw no clash between social control and social reform."
Southern and Texas

1. Agreed with national progressives in the need for
   social control
2. Differed from national progressives in aiming for a
   democratic society for whites only
3. Texas progressives were tied to older agrarian
4. "Texas progressivism carried an inherent anti-
   eastern bias . . . ."
                           Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 280.
Into the Tentieth Century: Governors Sayers and Lanham. Sayers and
Lanham were the last ex-Confederates to serve as governor. Both men
were conservative by nature and desired not to upset the favorable
business climate, which they credited the developing oil and surging
lumber industries with having created.   Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 280.

Joseph D. Sayers (1899-1903)                        S.W.T. Lanham (1903-1907)
In 1902, Texas voters approved of a poll tax that disenfranchised
many poor whites and blacks and further limited the possible third-
party challenges to Democratic hegemony. The Texas legislature
passed many Jim Crow laws, mandating, for example, segregated
railroad facilities. Soon Texas, like many southern states, had
erected an elaborate legal code that racially segregated public and
private facilities. p. 236.
         Texas progressive goals

•   Electoral reforms
•   Reforms to benefit labor unions
•   Tax reforms
•   Regulation of insurance and banking
•   Antitrust actions
The 1905 Terrell Election Law, proposed by senior
statesman Alexander W. Terrell, attempted to eliminate
election fraud and bring some uniformity into the process
of selecting candidates by establishing a modern system
of primary elections. p. 281.
                        The 1905 Terrell Election Law of
                           election reform did the following:

                        1. Establish a system of primary
                        2. Official secret ballot
                        3. Deadlines for the payment of the
                           poll tax
                        4. Primary election on the fourth
                           Saturday in July
                        5. File statements of campaign
                         “While the poll tax and the Terrell law did much to
                         clean up elections, the reforms came at the expense
                         of democracy.” (Calvert, De Leon, Cantrell, 281.)
                           Impact of electoral reforms:
1.Disenfranchised most black voters.        2. Disenfranchised many poor whites
        Historians have estimated that only between 15,000 and 40,000 of
160,000 black males over the age of twenty-one in Texas managed to retain
the right to vote in the 1920s. The tax also eliminated from the electorate
many of the poorest whites—a group that had been all-too-eager to embrace
the radical notions of Populism in the 1890s. Progressives were confident that
eliminating such 'unsavory' elements from politics would go far to clean up he
                           Turnout in Presidential Elections:
                      Texas, the South, and the Nation, 1848-2000

SOURCE: slide1.html
BAILEYISM AND ANTITRUST: Antitrust suits constituted a major element of progressivism.
Progressives believed that restoring competition in the marketplace would attract new
industry to Texas and create a favorable business climate for local investors.
Before World War I, state attorneys prosecuted more than one hundred companies for violating state
antitrust laws. Most famous of these antitrust suits was the Waters-Pierce case, which centered on the
relationship of U.S. Congressman and later Senator Joseph Weldon Bailey and Henry Clay Pierce, the
president of the Waters-Pierce company.
In 1897, Attorney General M. M. Crane brought suit against the Waters-Pierce
company because it was controlled by the Standard Oil trust of New Jersey.
Found in violation of state antimonopoly law, Waters-Pierce was made to forfeit its
state charter, at which point Pierce appealed to Bailey for aid.
                             Bailey convinced the state to allow a reorganized Waters-
                             Pierce company to resume conducting business in the state.
                             In 1905, an investigation revealed that Standard Oil still owned 3,000
                             shares of Waters-Pierce stock. As the investigation expanded, affidavits
                             disclosed that Pierce had employed Bailey as a legal counsel and had
                             loaned him $5,000.
                                                      Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 282-283.

Senator Joseph
Weldon Bailey
During the Campbell administration the legislature passed the Hogg antirailroad
   amendments, which:
1. prevented insolvent corporations from operating in Texas
2. prohibited the wholesale granting of railroad passes
3. denied the use of corporate funds for political purposes

    (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 283-286.)    Campbell was a genial man who
                                                  believed in prohibition but considered
Other measures Campbell oversaw included:
                                                  one’s use of alcohol a moral choice,
1. An antinepotism law                            one outside the realm of politics.
2. Strengthening of antitrust legislation
3. Roberson Insurance Law of 1907, which
   required insurance companies to invest at least
   75 percent of their resources drawn from Texas
   in state real estate and securities.
4. Bank Deposit Guaranty Act (1909-1927)
5. Encouraging the expansion of the Galveston
   Plan of city government
6. Creating a department of agriculture
7. Establishing a state library and historical
8. Advocating a more direct democracy through
   the use of initiative, referendum and recall       Governor Thomas Campbell
  Governor Oscar Branch Colquitt (1911-1915)
Colquitt favored local option in the
matter of prohibition, ran as a
conservative and aligned himself with
the “wet” forces, who opposed
statewide prohibition.

* Colquitt sent part of the Texas
National Guard to Brownsville to deter
feared attacks by Mexican troops. The
governor condemned President
Wilson’s policies toward Mexico as
weak and urged the president to
intervene more directly in the
Mexican Revolution. (p. 288.)

* “Colquitte’s other principal irritant was that he had inherited a
tax system with too low a tax base. The governor thus faced a
state deficit of $1 million. Meanwhile, the new state
institutions, public education, prison reform, and bureaucracies
in a developing Texas demanded new revenue.” (pp. 285-286.)
                        Educational reforms

Progressives wanted better schools to serve their children and to
 attract new industry.

Despite Texas's relative poverty, between 1890 and 1920 illiteracy
 dropped to 8.3 percent, the lowest in the South.

Reformers wanted standardization in books, courses,
 requirements, and administration.

                                 Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 286-290.
Two types of schools:

• Common schools: rural, administered by trustees, boundaries
  could change year-by-year. Most had one building, often one-room
  schools with a single teacher. Critics of the one-teacher, common
  schools maintained that rural students received an inferior
  education. One proposed solution was school consolidation. By
  1929, more than 1,500 school consolidations had been

• Independent school districts: towns, school boards
Between 1890 and 1920, the number of pupils attending Texas public schools
increased by 120 percent. About 73 percent of school-age children attended
                       some public school in 1920, with a corresponding drop
                       in illiteracy to 8.3 percent of the population, the lowest
                       in the South. In turn, state expenditure per student,
                       taxation for support of education, and teacher salaries
                       rose. Yet, in 1920 an independent survey ranked Texas
                               thirty-ninth nationally in quality of education
                               offered. One problem in improving Texas’s
                               education system was that the tax base and,
                               subsequently, the amount spent per pupil were so
                               low that even dramatic increases in expenditures
                               never matched the amount spent per pupil in
                               most northern and midwestern states. Calvert,
                               DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 287, 289.

             Former Mount Pleasant High School building (c. 1927)
In 1919, the legislature passed a law
requiring that all children between the ages
of eight and fourteen attend school for at
least a sixty-day term.
                           Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 287-288.

Annie Webb Blanton was the first
woman president of the Texas State
Teachers Association (TSTA) and the
first woman to hold statewide office,
superintendent of public instruction
(1918-1922), organized the “Better
Schools Campaign,” which in 1920
helped secure the passage of a
constitutional amendment permitting
districts to raise school taxes above
the original constitutional                 Annie Webb Blanton
Teachers were grossly underpaid. In 1920, the average annual salary
for a Texas teacher was $615, or about 55 percent of that of the
average Texas wage earner. Black teachers earned less than did white
ones, and rural teachers earned less than did their urban counterparts.

Annie Webb Blanton asked to no avail that the State Industrial
Commission set a minimum wage for teachers. Some teachers tried to
join or found unions but met Texas Hostility toward such organizations.
By 1929, Texas teachers’ salaries averaged $924 per year, as
compared to the national mark of $1,420.
                              Calvert, De León & Cantrell, 4th ed., 289.
• Possibly, the major impact of progressivism on
  education was not an improved teaching staff, but
  rather a change in philosophy. Progressive
  educators believed the classroom should be an
  environment to stimulate individual learning that
  would be relevant to the child's life.
• "Progressive reformers maintained that schools
  had a responsibility for the improvement of the
  social order. Schools were called upon to
  Americanize the foreign born, teach democratic
  principles, and impart moral values."
• "Progressives accepted as axiomatic the
  Jeffersonian proposition that mass education
  produced a more responsible citizenry.”
                      Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 289-291
•   Southern progressives identified the prison system as one of the state-
    run institutions that defined the South as a backward region of the
•    Progressives and the citizenry wanted prisons to support themselves.
    The additionally desired more humane treatment of prisoners and the
    standardizing of prison administration and the granting of pardons.
•   Political graft and the spoils system seemed to dominate the
    administration and conduct of the penal institutions.
1. were overworked, underfed and poorly clothed
2. were sometimes shot or whipped to death for minor offenses
3. lacked sex-segregated facilities
4. lacked separation by age and the nature of the crime committed
5. worked in conditions in which basic heath and sanitation precautions
   were ignored
                      (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 291-293.)
The growth rate of the prison population was twice
 that of the general population.
Prison reform in Campbell administration (1907-11):
1. end of contract-lease system
2. established ten-cent-per-day pay scale
3. eliminated striped uniforms
4. mandated segregation of prisoners
5. improved prison sanitation                Whipping continued.
6. improved medical service. (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 291-293)
    Prison reform in Coquitt administration (1911-15):
 1) state-run farms                          5) concurrent
 2) indeterminate sentences
 3) suspended sentences                      6) electric chair

 4) parole system                            7) better care for
                                             juvenile offenders
(Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 291-293.)
William Goodrich Jones crusaded for regulation of the
lumber industry. In 1914 he organized the Texas Forestry
Association, a private, nonprofit, nongovernmental
organization, financed by membership dues and
governed by elected representatives from within its
membership. The Texas Forestry Association was
committed to a statewide forest conservation plan to
prevent lumber barons from completely depleting an
area’s timber resources and then simply moving on.
(Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 294)
In 1915 the legislature created the Texas Department of Forestry,
administered as a division of the Agricultural and Mechanical College.
Critics charged that the Texas Department of Agriculture was too
closely linked to timber barons and not committed enough to
conservation. Under the leadership of Eric O. Siecke, who took over
the agency in 1918, the agency established state parks, taught
scientific reforesting and selective cutting methods, and developed
nurseries for seedlings to replace harvested trees. Nevertheless,
sufficient regulation was never established, and contrary to the policy
in many other states, in Texas no law existed mandating that a
seedling be replanted for each mature tree cut. High prices for lumber
during World War I hastened the exploitation of Texas timber
resources, and the 1920s witnessed the waning of the bonanza period
of the lumber industry. The result was the destruction of the great old-
growth pine forest of East Texas. (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 294)
            Texas Roads

The Good Roads Movement emerged
around 1910 as the automobile gained
popularity in the South. The Texas
Good Roads Association organized in
1911 with the intent to educate
citizens and the legislature on the
need for a central authority to plan and
maintain a state highway system. In
1916, the Texas Highway Department
was established to promote the
construction of roads with matching
funds from the federal government. But
the program floundered from its
beginnings; the early commissioners
did not cooperate with one another;
and counties continued to make plans
for roads unilaterally, grant their own
contracts for road construction, and
apply individually to the state for
reimbursement. This lack of
cooperation from county to county
denied the state a viable highway
system for many years. (Calvert,
DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 295)
• A self-educated lawyer and banker, “Farmer Jim” won two terms as
  governor, was impeached, and then dominated the gubernatorial
  administrations of his wife (1925-1927, 1933-1935).
• Critics identified the Fergusons with demagoguery and corruption.
  Supporters lauded them as friends of the oppressed and tenant
  farmers. Ferguson announced his campaign in 1914 with the
  statement that Texans were tired of the issue of prohibition. He,
  therefore, would ignore it and concentrate on more important topics.
  He campaigned in the poorer agricultural districts, promising to limit
  the amount of rent that landlords could charge tenant farmers.
• During his first term as governor, his farm tenancy
  bill capping farm rents passed.
• During Ferguson’s second term, charges of
  corruption intertwined with his deteriorating
  relations with the alumni of the University of
  Texas. Ferguson wanted more control over
  specific items in the school’s budget. His
  detractors said that the governor wished in reality
  to designate faculty appointments in order to
  purge the staff of those who politically opposed
                                                        James E. Ferguson,
  him.                                                  Governor of Texas (1914-
           (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 296-299.)   1917)
 “Fergusonism and the Impeachment of Governor James E. Ferguson
• The attack on the University of Texas was complicated by A. and M.
  College’s demand for a share of the Permanent University Fund and the
  structure of the governing boards of both schools.
• Ferguson charged that some faculty members of the University of Texas
  mismanaged state funds and that the university offered an elite and
  costly education. He threatened to veto the university’s appropriation if
  Robert Vinson, President of the University, and selected faculty members
  were not fired. When the university regents and the alumni association
  stood firm against the governor’s demands, he made good on his promise
  and vetoed the appropriation. Now, the regents put out a call for his
• Due to his opposition woman’s suffrage and prohibition, both the
  suffragists and prohibitionists united to support the impeachment of
• The seeming intermingling of state revenues with the governor’s private
  fund (including $156,500 in unpaid loans, later discovered to have
  originated from brewing interests) enlisted progressives into the
  impeachment camp.
• The legislature commenced impeachment proceeding against Ferguson.
  Ferguson resigned to avoid impeachment, but the court of impeachment
  acted anyway, removing the governor and banning him from holding
  future state offices.          (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 296-299.)
The Mexican Revolution
David Siquieros Mural: “Poeple in Arms”
      Between 1910 and 1920, between 1.5 and 2
   million Mexican lost their lives in the Revolution.

The census takers in
1920 counted almost a
million fewer Mexican
than they had found
only a decade before.
Governor William P.
Hobby (1917-1921)

Hobby advocated
both woman’s
suffrage and
When Woodrow Wilson, a
Democrat, won the presidency
in 1912, his victory signaled a
return of the South to national
political power, a place
relinquished to the political
dominance of the Republican
party in the aftermath of the
Civil War. Texans undertook a
major role in Wilson’s 1912
nomination and campaign.
(Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 299.)
Texas progressives considered Wilson a beacon to guide their reform efforts,
and when the war began they transferred their energies into support of his
and the nation’s war efforts.
There were many casualties; 5,170 Texans lost their lives in the
Great War, with more than one-third of these deaths the result of the
1918 Spanish influenza epidemic.    (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 300.)

      Americans burying their dead,
 Bois de Consenvoye, France, 8 Nov 1918
WOMAN’S SUFFRAGE: In 1919, Governor Will Hobby
requested that the legislature put before the
electorate constitutional amendments enfranchising
women and denying the vote to the foreign born.
Legislators complied, but the voters defeated both
measure in an election in which all men in the state,
including aliens, could and all women could not cast
ballots. Later that same year, however, the
legislature ratified the Nineteenth Amendment to the
Constitution, which authorized woman’s suffrage.
                           (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 302-303)
“The prohibition movement both
gained sustenance from and
nourished the women’s movement. In
a period when women were
considered keepers of morality and
culture, prohibition furnished an
issue that allowed them political
participation in a reform crusade
that did not violate their male-
ordained societal role. Moreover,
prohibition linked all reformers
together. Progressives saw alcohol
as a corrupter of democratic society
and its sale as a moral evil.”

      (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, p. 304)
The presence in the antiprohibition
movement of ethnic minorities, Germans
and Mexicans in particular, buttressed the
identification of dry forces as upholders of
Anglo-Saxon democracy. (p. 306)

                            (Calvert, DeLeón &
                            Cantrell, p. 304.)
The Baptist Standard best
expressed the drys’ attitude
when it declared that prohibition
was clearly “an issue of Anglo-
Saxon culture” versus the
presumably inferior civilization of
minorities in urban areas. The
identification of ethnic groups
with alcohol paid large dividends
to the prohibitionists in Texas
and elsewhere during World War I
To not drinking alcohol became “patriotic”: people
did not work well with hangovers, alcohol was
needed in the war effort, and saloons corrupted U.S.
In January 1920, the Eighteenth Amendment to the
U.S. Constitution outlawed the sale of alcoholic
beverages.                 (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 304-305.)
• The same surge of patriotism that identified
                                                     (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 305-306.)
liquor as un-American in World War I also
encouraged a demand for cultural conformity. A
public suspicion arose of those ideals or people
who might not endorse the points of view of the
• Texas made pubic criticism of the American
flag, the war effort, the U.S. government, or
soldiers’ uniforms a crime punishable by
• The legislature mandated that public schools
teach patriotism, fly the American flag, and,
except for foreign-language classes, conduct all
studies in English.
• Sometimes the superpatriotism bordered on
silliness: sauerkraut became known instead as
“liberty cabbage.” Other times it became
hysterical and repressive: violent acts such as
floggings were used to instill patriotism in those
suspected of holding dissenting opinions.
• The antiforeign hysteria melded into an
antiradical crusade after 1917 Communist
revolution in Russia. Now, the state citizenry
frequently defined strikes and demands for civil
rights as un-American and Bolshevik-inspired.
                       Progressivism in the 1920s
• Progressivism did not disappear with the triumph of the Republican
party in the 1920 presidential election or with the prosperity of the
following decade. Rather, the drive for patriotism in World War I
encouraged progressives to stress some goals at the expense of
others. Consequently, two strains of progressivism dominated the
politics of the 1920s.

• Since progressives saw no contradiction between reform and social
control, they looked to public schools and other state institutions to
Americanize foreigners, to inculcate middle-class values, and to
protect morality through prohibition. Thus, one faction of progressives
actually had no trouble endorsing attempts by a reborn Ku Klux Klan
and anti-evolution theory crusaders to exercise social control through
enforcing prohibition laws.
                                 (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 306-307)
• The other emergent faction embraced “business progressivism”
which endeavored to utilize the ideas of efficiency and public service
to effect order and prosperity. Business progressives fought for
administrative reorganization, good roads, and improved schools and
health care; they seemingly ignored the demands of labor unions,
tenant farmers, and proponents of civil rights.
                    GOVERNOR PAT NEFF: A devout Christian, former speaker of
                    the state house of representatives, and prosecuting attorney,
                    Neff espoused progressive goals. He used martial law to
                    quell violence in the railroad strike at Denison, and he fought
                    hard for good roads and the initiation of a state park network.
                    Many of his failures emanated from his attempt to enforce
                    prohibition laws. While governor, Neff described Texas as
                    suffering from the worst “crime wave” in its history and asked
                    the legislature to expand law enforcement agencies and pass
Governor Pat Neff   more stringent liquor legislation.
He wanted an increase in the Ranger force, a repeal of the suspended-sentence
law that allowed bootleggers to avoid prison sentences, and a provision for
removing local officials who did not vigorously enforce prohibition laws. When
the legislature failed to respond, he chided the lawmakers for defending

Neff used his powers as governor and his considerable energy to try to enforce
prohibition, dispatching Rangers to areas of suspected bootlegging activity, and
taking the lead in publicizing campaigns to eradicate liquor consumption.

The controversy over enforcement of prohibition laws made Neff reluctant to
condemn the Ku Klux Klan. He believed that the Klan’s opposition to
bootlegging warranted his support of the organization, regardless of its violent
tactics.                          (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 306-308)
The general failure of prohibition enforcement brought
home to many Texas what they defined as a decline in
American morals. The rapidly increasing urbanization
seemed to blur what were once clear moral and
community values. Migration to the city disrupted the
neighborhoods of rural America and, coupled with
more and better transportation facilities, broke up the
extended family. Historians have cited the urban
growth of the United States as creating tensions
between rural and urban Americans. The anxiety
emanated not only from the countryside, but also from
developing southern cities filled with recent foreign
immigrants. The anticity focus of rural Texans
resulted from their perception of urban areas as
hotbeds of disloyal foreigners, religious modernism,
illegal speakeasies, organized crime, morally
suspicious “New Women,” and corrupting modern
music. These tensions were further abetted by the
post-World War I Red Scare and reinforced by the
progressive drive for social control. (pp. 307-308)
                   The Ku Klux Klan
The Klan professed as its goals the preservation of patriotism, the
purity of women, white supremacy, and law and order. It opposed
radicals, Catholics, Jews, blacks, Mexicans, the wearing by women of
short skirts, the consumption of “demon rum,” and continued foreign
immigration. By 1922, the organization had 700,000 members and by
1925, possibly as many as 5 million. (p. 308)
The New Klan was to be a
secret social organization
that would advocate
   THE HOT FLAME OF THE KLAN IN THE 1920S: The motivation
behind the Klan in Texas was more the imposition of moral conformity
than racism and nativism, and the Klan was willing to use extralegal
methods to prevent “moral decay” from spreading throughout the
state. Texas newspapers reported eighty incidents of flogging in 1921.
Klan victims included:
                                            (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 310-313.)
1. doctors accused of performing abortions
2. businessmen charged with corrupting young women
3. oil field workers whose rowdy behavior had disturbed the
townspeople of Mexia                         BELOW: A group of men dressed in full Klan regalia march
                                             down the street at night with torches, crosses and flags. A
4. husbands who abandoned their wives        crowd of people line the street to watch. Source:
5. divorcees who set immoral examples

6. as well as pimps, prostitutes, gamblers, thieves, and bootleggers.

The Klan argued that it existed to enforce
law in a time of lawlessness.
By 1923, the Klan’s increased use of
violence had begun to alienate upper- and
middle-class white voters, and the
organization nearly disappeared toward
to the end of the decade. However, its
residue of demands for moral conformity
lived on.
Praying for divine help to fight Moral Decay. But whose morals?
Who are the judges? Is the enemy clear?
             Governor Miriam Ferguson (1925-1927)

Miriam A. Ferguson ran for governor in 1924 against the Klan candidate, Felix
Robertson of Dallas. Part of her campaign focused on opposition to the Klan. Much
of her appeal came from the general understanding that her candidacy for governor
was a surrogate campaign for her deposed husband. Thomas Love said Mrs.
Ferguson won because progressives hated the Klan violence more than they hated
Fergusonism.                                       (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 308-309)
One historian summed up the Fergusons’ tenure: “In the murky world of statute
books, there may well have been no illegality, but the Fergusons were guilty of a
flagrant abuse of the ethical standards of public office.”
Governor Moody became a spokesman            (Calvert, DeLeón & Cantrell, pp. 308, 312.)
for business progressivism. Moody’s
successes were few, yet national
journals cited him along with some other
southern governors as examples of
progressive leaders.
Moody’s first term in office had
corresponded to a time of prosperity for
the nation and the state. His second
term witnessed the stock market
collapse of 1929 and the onset of the
Great Depression. Now business
progressivism, which had solidified with
the industrial growth of the 1920s,
collapsed with the shattered economy.
The Great Depression hit Texas farmers
especially hard. Bountiful crops
disguised the economic weakness of
Texas farmers by helping to offset falling
prices for agricultural commodities.         Governor Dan Moody

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