Ballots, Books, and Soap Boxes

Ballots, Books, And Soap Boxes

    The fact that a quarter million copies of my books have been bought and read in the short space of about fifteen months shows that somebody had been thinking about the subject besides one.”  (Tourgee to Garfield, 1881)

Through the late eighteenth century, Tourgee used his literary fame to broaden the base of awareness and support for human rights and equal citizenship, through weekly national and regional newspaper columns and the lecture circuit. His "Bystanders’ Notes” columns in the Inter Ocean engaged readers across the country on a range of topics.

Pages (27)
Southern Blacks blocked from voting Southern Blacks blocked from voting

In his State of the Union speech given before both Houses of Congress on De ... read more

Tourgee complained about this earlier Tourgee complained about this earlier

Several months earlier, on April 30, 1890, Tourgée sent a letter to Henry ... read more

Congressional efforts fall short Congressional efforts fall short

In Tourgée’s opinion, the choice of a “supervisor law” as he called ... read more

Tourgee's works sought for Library Tourgee's works sought for Library

Library seeks copies of Tourgee's work to add to their collection of anti-s ... read more

John Edward Bruce John Edward Bruce

The letter was written by John Edward Bruce, who at age 35 was a recognized ... read more

Pactolus Prime Pactolus Prime

There is a point in the story at which Prime and the Senator are arguing ov ... read more

What is Injustice? is the real question What is Injustice? is the real question

Prime suggests it might be better to focus on the question of “what is in ... read more

The inspiration for Pactolus Prime The inspiration for Pactolus Prime

The inspiration for Pactolus Prime can be found in the failed story of the ... read more

Tourgee urged legislation for education Tourgee urged legislation for education

Even before the Blair Education Bill, Tourgée had been ardently pressing f ... read more

Garfield as Congressman speaks for Natl Education Garfield as Congressman speaks for Natl Education

Garfield himself had addressed the House as Congressman in 1872 on behalf o ... read more

Tourgee’s warns of peril of illiterate voters Tourgee’s warns of peril of illiterate voters

Tourgee’s North American Review article contains a phrase he also used in ... read more

 Which elements essential for national power? Which elements essential for national power?

What elements are essential to the existence of national power? In Tourgée ... read more

The funds should go to most illiterate states The funds should go to most illiterate states

The distribution of the fund would be based on each state’s illiteracy ra ... read more

Garfield assassinated, hopes dashed Garfield assassinated, hopes dashed

Unfortunately, a mere seven months later, the President was shot and mortal ... read more

Tourgee urges voters to remain with Republicans Tourgee urges voters to remain with Republicans

The continuing failure of the Republican Party to generate effective legisl ... read more

A voter responds to Tourgee's rousing A voter responds to Tourgee's rousing

In August 1887, W. A. Dawson from Toronto, Kansas writes to the Editor of t ... read more

Racial polarities develop in social and political Racial polarities develop in social and political

It was becoming evident that some kind of polarization on views about race ... read more

Additional written attacks on colored persons Additional written attacks on colored persons

The clippings included articles from The Weekly Constitution of Atlanta, Ge ... read more

The National Colored Alliance The National Colored Alliance

The National Colored Alliance and the Colored Farmer’s Alliance both orig ... read more

Progress virtually unattainable Progress virtually unattainable

Whether political, economic or social, whenever people were organizing for ... read more

VanDeman urges Tourgee to continue VanDeman urges Tourgee to continue

J. W. VanDeman from Benzonia, Benzie County Michigan wrote in March 1891 read more

A. B. Ellis tells of his experiences with blacks A. B. Ellis tells of his experiences with blacks

In contrast, a letter from A. B. Ellis, written in the same month and year, ... read more

Some viewed blacks as weakening white culture Some viewed blacks as weakening white culture

This view that people of color were somehow inferior to and potentially des ... read more

African American Educational Institutions increase African American Educational Institutions increase

While many people might assume the time following “Reconstruction” witn ... read more

Young African American men desire education Young African American men desire education

The numbers of young African American men interested in higher learning was ... read more

Isaiah Washington writes to Tourgee for advice Isaiah Washington writes to Tourgee for advice

And in February, 1893, Isaiah Washington from Albion College in Michigan wr ... read more

Tourgée considers slavery to still be in effect Tourgée considers slavery to still be in effect

Tourgée advises not to look upon slavery as a condition under which people ... read more

iconLatest Discussions

Share your thoughts, start a discussion!