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THE UNITED STATES
PRESIDENT HAYES'S ADMINISTRATION.
The President's Cabinet - Civil Service Reform - Failure to pass appropriation bills - Extra session called but no action taken - The great railway strike The Nez Percé war Chief Joseph sur
renders Negotiations with Sitting Bull-His final acceptance of amnesty-Shoshones and Bannocks exterminated - Trouble with the Utes The Halifax Fishery Commission - Review of dispute Attempts to secure appointment of third commissioner - Failure of Blaine to exclude Delfosse from commission - Finally appointed -Great Britain awarded $5,500,000— United States astonished at terms of award Amount paid when due Measures for resumption of specie payments Effort of opponents to hinder it - The Bland-Allison Coinage act Stanley Matthews resolution Resumption successfully accomplished - General prosperity of country-Failure of foreign crops Large exports - Business revival-Gold imports - Rise in Treasury gold reserve - Political changes - Elections of 1880-Party platforms - Garfield and Arthur elected — Refunding bill introduced - Fails to pass over veto-New apportionment of Representatives. OLLOWING his inauguration President Hayes made his Cabinet selections known. These officers were nominated and immediately confirmed by the Senate. They were as follows: William M. Evarts, of New York, Secretary of State; John Sherman, of Ohio, Secretary of the Treasury; George W. McCrary, of Iowa, Secretary of War, followed by Alexander Ramsey, of Minnesota, in 1880; Richard W. Thompson, of Indiana, Secretary of the Navy followed
by Nathan Goff, Jr., of West Virginia, in 1881; Carl Schurz, of Missouri, Secretary of the Interior; David M. Key, of Tennessee, Postmaster-General, followed by Horace Maynard, of Tennessee, in 1880; and Charles Devens, of Massachusetts, Attorney-General.
After he had settled the disputes in South Carolina and Louisiana, previously mentioned, President Hayes turned his attention to making a reform ir. the civil service, and on June 22, 1877, addressed the following cir
cular letter to all the government given to the passing of appropriation office-holders:*
"Sir: I desire to call your attention to the following paragraph addressed by me to the Secretary of the Treasury, on the conduct to be observed by officers of the General Government, in relation to the elections: No officer should be required or permitted to take part in the management of political organizations, caucuses, conventions, or election campaigns. Their right to vote and to express their views on public questions either orally or through the public press, is not denied, provided it does not interfere with the discharge of their official duties. No assessments for political purposes on officers or subordinates should be allowed.' This rule is applicable to every department of the Civil Service. It should be understood by every officer of the General Government that he is expected to conform his conduct to its requirements."
Had this order been adhered to the office-holders would have been relieved of a burden that they should not have been called upon to bear. But the leaders of both parties would not willingly allow such an enormous source of income to slip from their grasp and consequently did everything within their power to contravene the effect of the order. While the President was unable to accomplish much in the way of reform because of this opposition, he brought the need of such reform most forcibly to the attention of the nation.†
The last session of the Forty-fourth Congress had been given almost entirely to the struggle over the Presidency between Hayes and Tilden and consequently no
no consideration was
* Richardson, Messages and Papers, vol. vii., p. 450.
Schurz, Reminiscences, vol. ii., pp. 377-383; Andrews, Last Quarter-Century, vol. i., pp. 242247.
bills. President Hayes was now compelled to call a special session of Congress to provide means for carrying on the government, but as summer was drawing near he called the session for October. In his message of October 15,* the President stated that the deficiencies amounted to about $37,000,000 and asked that Congress pass the necessary legislation. But that body occupied itself with other measures and failed to make the appropriations asked for even though the session was prolonged until the regular December session.
While business conditions were fairly prosperous during 1877, the industrial world was somewhat upset by several strikes. The most noted of these was the railroad strike, which occurred during the summer. The employees of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad struck because of a reduction in their wages, and in the Northern States the employees of the Pennsylvania, the Erie and the New York Central railroads - the chief trunk lines between East and West — tied up the freight traffic for several weeks. At Martinsburg, West Virginia, the strike could not be controlled by the State authorities and Governor Matthews called upon President Hayes for troops, which were sent. The President also issued a proclamation calling upon the strikers to disperse. A serious riot broke out at Baltimore on
Richardson, Messages and Papers, vol. vii., pp. 452-454.
NEZ PERCÉ WAR; SITTING BULL.
July 20-21, in which the 6th Maryland regiment and some of the United States regulars were stoned, but the rioters were put down by the government troops sent at the request of Governor Carroll of Maryland. In Pittsburg the Philadelphia militia was attacked by a mob on July 21-22 and the troops were fired upon. Many were killed on both sides. The troops took refuge in a roundhouse but they were besieged and the roundhouse burned by the mob and in the end the troops were compelled to leave the city. The mob then destroyed 125 locomotives and nearly 1,600 cars, the Pennsylvania Railroad sustaining a loss of nearly $2,000,000. Riots also occurred at Buffalo, St. Louis, Chicago, Columbus and San Francisco." During the summer of 1877 occurred a short war with the Nez Percé Indians of Idaho. The government had forced them several years before to take a chief who was not of their selection to the exclusion of a member of one of the illustrious families of the tribe-Joseph. They then became discontented and restless. Joseph, however, did not relinquish his claim to the chieftancy and when a portion of the tribe were removed to a reservation, Joseph and his band, denying the right of the government to disposses them, refused to go. In 1871 Joseph died and his son of the same name became his successor.
* Carroll D. Wright, Industrial Evolution of the United States, pp. 301-306; Ezra H. Heywood, The Great Strike.
White settlers now began to encroach on Joseph's domain, and in 1875 he was peremptorily ordered to leave. Joseph refused and troops were sent to drive him out, despite the remonstrance of General O. 0. Howard. Hearing of the advance of the troops Joseph resolved to strike the first blow and in the early part of June, 1877, took the warpath. By July 10 more than 30 lives had been sacrificed, chiefly Chinamen, but the troops were now pressing the Indians hard and the latter experienced difficulty in eluding the soldiers. On July 12 the first engagement occurred and 11 soldiers were killed. The Indians maintained the contest for many weeks until General Miles was sent against them. He succeeded in cornering them early in October and on the 5th of that month Joseph and his band surrendered at Eagle Creek, Montana.*
After Sitting Bull, the Sioux chief, had destroyed Custer's command (as recorded in a previous chapter) he eluded the other troops and escaped into Canada. As the government could not send troops into British territory to capture the Indians and
as the Indians could not be enticed
across the line again, a commission was appointed to negotiate a treaty of peace and friendship with the old chief. As word had now been received of the surrender of the Nez Percés, the commission consisting of General A. H. Terry and A. G. Lawrence, con
Miles, Personal Recollections, pp. 259-280.