The Church Historian's Press

March 1895

1 March 1895 • Friday

Friday, March 1, 1895. Went to the Temple as usual this morning early.

Sister Caroline Woods Dye, with whom I was acquainted in 1859, she being one of the emigrants who came from England that spring and of whom I formed a favorable opinion at Winter Quarters, where she and Brother & Sister Neslen kept house for me, died a few days ago, and though I was not feeling well this morning I attended her funeral in the 20th Ward, and after Brother Jos. E. Taylor had made some remarks I followed, and felt well in speaking.

At 1:30 Presidents Woodruff and Smith and myself drove to the Temple and met with 275 Latter-day Saints who had been invited to be there to share in celebrating the birth of President Woodruff. He is eighty-eight years old today. The exercises were quite interesting, and at his request I took charge of the proceedings. Refreshments were served to all present, and we kept together until a little after 5 o’clock. Everybody appeared deeply interested in the proceedings, and warm congratulations were extended to the President, and also to his wife, whose birthday this is also.

2 March 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, March 2, 1895 Busy at the office during the forenoon, and in the afternoon I attended the Conference of the Salt Lake Stake of Zion in the Assembly Hall, and spoke for a short time.

3 March 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, March 3, 1895 I arose early this morning and took my son Willard and we drove to East Bountiful, where the Davis Stake Conference was being held. The house was filled to overflowing. Brothers Franklin D. Richards and Heber J. Grant were there also. As I intended to return to the city after the meeting so as to be present at the Salt Lake Conference, I expected to do my speaking in the forenoon; but before saying anything I called upon Brother Grant to speak, which he did for 20 mins. When I arose I was very empty, but I was blessed with a goodly outpouring of the Spirit and spoke for an hour and a quarter.

We partook of diner at Bishop Chester Call’s.

In the afternoon I attended the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City. After the authorities were presented, Brother F. M. Lyman was called upon to address the Conference. He spoke about 40 mins. I followed, occupying about 20 mins.

In the evening another meeting was held, at which Brothers John Henry Smith, John W. Taylor, H. J. Grant and my son Abraham spoke.

4 March 1895 • Monday

Monday, March 4, 1895. Brother Andrew Sorenson Hyrup and his wife accompanied by Bishop M. S. Woolley of the 21st Ward, called to see me about their affairs.

Word came up from President Woodruff that he was not able to come to the office and requesting me to act in his stead in offering prayer at the opening of the Constitutional Convention at 12 o’clock. Upon Mr. Crane being notified that President Woodruff could not attend, he sent word to me requesting me to act. I did so, and the Convention was opened.

There was a meeting of the Bullion, Beck & Champion Mining Co stockholders at 3 o’clock. It was the annual meeting for the election of officers. Mr. Knox was present, and though he held 5000 shares belonging to John Beck he did not vote; but all the rest, representing [blank] shares, voted for the following officers: John Beck, president and director; Abraham H. Cannon, vice president and director; W. S. McCornick, treasurer and director; Walter J. Beatie, secretary and director; Hiram B. Clawson, Simon Bamberger and Hyrum Beck, directors. I was very pleased that the election passed off so quietly, as there had been some fears entertained that there might be some attempted interruption by some parties.

5 March 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, March 5, 1895 At 11 o’clock I met with the Brigham Young Trust Co., and attended to business.

President Woodruff came to the office today feeling much improved in health.

Brother Wm. Budge came down to talk over the situation in Idaho.

Le Grand Young came in and brought papers to read to us connected with the bonding of our coal properties in Grass Creek.

6 March 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, March 6, 1895. Went to the Temple as usual early this morning.

At the office attended to business with Brother Orson Smith and Hugh J. Cannon, and in company with Presidents Woodruff and Smith signed a paper guaranteeing $1000 to the Commercial Bank.

Ex-Senator Davis, of West Virginia, with his wife, daughters and son, called upon us, in company with Colonel Trumbo. He is an old acquaintance of mine and appeared very glad to see me, he being in the Senate while I was a member of the House of Representatives.

My wives Sarah Jane, Martha, Eliza and Caroline took dinner with me today, and after dinner the children came in with their mandolins and guitars and gave us some very nice music. Songs were sung by Hester, Emily and Carol, and Rosannah gave us two recitations. We had a very pleasant evening.

7 March 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, March 7, 1895 The news has reached here of the death of President A. O. Smoot, who passed away yesterday afternoon. It is arranged for the funeral to take place on Sunday, and the First Presidency and probably Brothers Lorenzo Snow and Heber J. Grant of the Twelve Apostles propose to attend the services at 11 o’clock.

A young man by the name of Clark, a son of Brother Ezra T. Clark, of Farmington, has died at Haifa, Palestine, from an attack of black smallpox. The word has just been received concerning this sad event, and memorial services are to be held next Sunday at Farmington. Elders Franklin D. Richards and Abraham H. Cannon will attend them.

This morning we spent nearly an hour with Brothers Heber J. Grant and John N. Pike going through the accounts of the Brigham Young Academy of Provo. Brother Pike had been down to examine the books. We found a heavy indebtedness existing.

At 11 o’clock we went to the Temple and held our usual Council meeting. President Woodruff did not change his dress.

At 1 o’clock I had an appointment with Mr. S. H. H. Clark, one of the Receivers of the Union Pacific R.R., who called upon us at the office. I wished to explain to him what steps were being taken to secure traffic for that road, he and other officials having felt that there was a disposition on the part of the Bullion, Beck & Champion Mining Co. and Zion’s Co-operative Mercantile Institution to discriminate against that road. He seemed quite satisfied with the explanations I made. I think Mr. Clark a very honorable man, and in his dealings with us, covering a great many years, I have always found him, so far as I have known, very straightforward and impartial.

There was a meeting of the Sunday school Union at the office and we attended to a good deal of business.

8 March 1895 • Friday

Friday, March 8, 1895. I went to the Temple as usual this morning.

I was variously engaged at the office, and dictated considerable correspondence to Brother Arthur Winter.

I have received the two following dispatches from my son:

“Since I wired you today Abbot writes discouragingly of his health. My judgment is father should come as soon as possible prepared to remain until money is obtained. I shall endeavor to get negotiation ready for his attention. Wire me your conclusions here.”

“Wednesday and today appear articles in New York Times declaring the Church bankrupt and makes assault upon our company."

I sent the following reply:

“Hardly possible to leave before early next week. Wire any change in programme. Authorship of articles should be ascertained.”

9 March 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, March 9, 1895. Came to the office and held a meeting with Judge Patton and Mr. Bannister of the Pioneer Electric Power Co. President Jos. F. Smith, Bishop Winder and Brother A. H. Woodruff were present also. The following dispatch was sent to Frank:

“Ogden enterprise seriously threatened by other parties. To secure our rights immediate work on our pipe line imperative. Not less than four thousand per month. Question at meeting this morning was, having no money here, can funds be immediately raised from securities to be sold by Tracey. If not how soon. While at Denver Bannister was favorably approached by capitalist. Will it be wise to negotiate with other parties. What do you advise?”

Dictated articles for the Juvenile Instructor to Brother Winter.

10 March 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, March 10, 1895 Drove to the Rio Grande Western depot in time for the 8 o’clock train, but had to wait there for an hour and a half, as it was delayed. We reached Provo, however, in time for the meeting at the Tabernacle. The building was crowded to its utmost capacity. It was draped beautifully and the casket containing Brother Smoot’s body lay in front of the stand. I was requested to take charge of the services. The choir sang very beautifully during the services. Prayer was offered by President Lorenzo Snow. Brother Joseph E. Taylor, an old acquaintance of President Smoot’s, occupied 20 mins, at the request of the family. President Joseph F. Smith followed. He was followed by Brother Smoot’s two counselors, David John and Edward Partridge. After, I addressed the congregation for about half an hour. President Woodruff then spoke. We intended the services should then close, but the family sent up a request for Brother Maeser to speak, which he did for a few minutes, describing Brother Smoot’s connection with the Brigham Young Academy and the zeal which he displayed therein. Brother John Henry Smith dismissed the meeting. I never saw a larger procession in this country than that which followed President Smoot’s remains to the grave. The whole city turned out.

President Woodruff and myself took dinner at Hotel Roberts.

We returned to the city in Brother James Sharp’s private car on the Union Pacific.

I scarcely ever heard a higher tribute paid to any man at his funeral than Brother Smoot received today from all the speakers. All seemed to recognize his fidelity and his unwavering attachment and devotion to the work of the Lord.

11 March 1895 • Monday

Monday, March 11, 1895 I went to the Temple this morning as usual.

The First Presidency had a meeting with the Presiding Bishops concerning the work on the Temple Block, etc.

Brother Geo. C. Parkinson called in and related the events connected with the election of United States Senator in Idaho. He felt that they had done perfectly right in electing Senator Shoup after fighting so long as they did for the election of Mr. Sweet.

A very long communication was received today by Bishop Clawson from General J. S. Clarkson, in which he described the offer that he had had of an interest in the Inter-Ocean of Chicago, and he wrote also appealing to the First Presidency through Bishop Clawson to assist him to the extent of one hundred thousand dollars in purchasing stock, by means of which he could control that paper. He described the great advantages it would be to us and to all his friends in the west if he could secure this property in the way that he suggested and become the editor of this great paper. He dwelt on it at great length, and said that the alliance which had been formed between himself and us ought not to be broken; it was for all our interests that it should continue, and he thought this would be a good way to aid him and he would accept it in compensation towards what he had done for us. President Woodruff expressed himself to the effect that he was pleased to see General Clarkson manifested so good a spirit. We debated it at some length, but while Presidents Woodruff and Smith expressed themselves that if we had the money they would not be averse to assisting him, they could not apparently see how this could be done.

I have been making my preparations today to get away tomorrow morning for the east, but I had a lot of unfinished business with my son Abraham, and we also wanted to see Brother Clawson, and neither of them could be found in time for me to complete my arrangements to go; so it was decided that I should defer my departure until tomorrow.

12 March 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, March 12, 1895 During the night I reflected very much on the situation of affairs, especially in connection with this request of General Clarkson. I feel that General Clarkson did not treat me in a proper manner in blaming me for his plans not being acceded to by the First Presidency; still I cannot forget what this man has done for us as a people, and because he may misunderstand me and blame me when I am innocent I do not feel that this relieves me from the sense of obligation to him on behalf of the people. I had remarked to him and Colonel Trumbo and Bishop Clawson that if it required all the interest that I had in the various enterprises in which we are engaged to satisfy them, I would willingly give it. It struck me this morning in reflecting on this subject that I would offer my house and lot containing an acre and quarter of land (330 feet on South Temple St. and 10 rods on First West St.[)], to be given to him or sold for its value towards this $100,000. So this morning, after I reached the office and this matter came up for consideration I made this proffer to the First Presidency in the presence of Bishop Clawson, and said that Mr. Clarkson was as welcome to it as he would be to a glass of water if he were thirsty. It would give me great pleasure to contribute my share towards relieving us from obligations we were under to him. We had a lengthy conversation with Bishop Clawson upon this subject, and I left Presidents Woodruff and Smith to give him their instructions as to what he should say to General Clarkson. We are unable to give that amount of money but it struck me that if a note were given secured by this property of mine and we could borrow money for a long time at a low rate of interest, the property itself would increase in value sufficiently to pay the note. It was valued at $125,000 during the boom. I think now, even at present prices, it is worth between $50,000 & $60,000.

I have been doing a good deal of business with my son Abraham today in settling up my affairs with John Beck.

Col. Trumbo insisted on giving me a very valuable stallion “Don Figaro”, but I said I did not wish to accept gifts. I never had done so and did not wish to accept this; but he insisted, and said he would not call it a present, and I made no further remark on the subject.

13 March 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, March 13, 1895 Myself and my wife Caroline left home this morning on the 7 o’clock train for New York. Brother Wilcken took us to the depot in the carriage. Bishop Clawson and two daughters, Mamie and Lulu, were passengers also to Chicago. The weather after leaving Ogden was cold and stormy.

14 March 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, March 14, 1895 Weather still cold and stormy.

At the Union Depot at Council Bluffs found a dispatch from Mr. Whitman of the Chicago and Northwestern road authorizing the conductors to pass myself and wife to Chicago.

15 March 1895 • Friday

Friday, March 15, 1895 Our train was rather late, but we reached Chicago about 10:15 a.m. and we took carriage to the Auditorium. I first looked after the transportation for myself and wife by the Pennsylvania line to New York. Mr. Dering, the agent, was very kind, as was also Mr. Richardson, his chief clerk. Mr. Dering desired me to call in for the passes tomorrow morning.

At 12:30 noon had an interview with General J. S. Clarkson. Bishop Clawson had already seen him and told him what we proposed to do for him and my proffer of my house and lot for him, at which the Bishop said he was deeply moved and tears coursed down his cheeks. Our conversation on the subject was rather brief; but I explained to him how we felt and what we were willing to do; that the proffer of my house and lot was made with the hope that when disposed of it might bring, if not all the $100,000 which it was proposed to borrow, at least the greater part of the amount. During the day he told me he had described to Mr. Leiter, one of the parties through whom he was to get the money, what he had been offered for it, and he informed me that Mr. Leiter said our names for $100,000 and the lot as security would be sufficient for the money. Mr. Leiter spoke in the highest terms, he said, of us and our probity and honor in meeting our engagements, &c.

Bishop Clawson and myself accompanied Gen. Clarkson to the Grand Pacific Hotel to meet Mr. Allen T. Nye, the Manager of the Standard Telephone Co. This is a Company which has been formed for the purpose of introducing a telephone system into all parts of the United States at a much lower rate per telephone than that now charged by the Bell Telephone Co. It is a company composed of the strongest financial and influential men in the country. There is a parent company; then the United States and Canada are divided into districts, generally of from two to four states, and in each of these there is a company composed of the strongest financial and influential men, consisting of a President and fourteen directors. These subordinate companies are capitalized generally at four millions, though two or three are at five and at least one at six millions. The Mountain Standard Telephone Co. will comprise Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah. Mr. Nye was very desirous to get me interested sufficiently in the business to take hold with himself and friends. It was to get Bishop Clawson interested in the enterprise that he had been sent for by Gen. Clarkson. The latter is to be the President of the Company comprising Illinois[,] Iowa and one or two other states. Mr. Nye appears very sanguine of success, and that there is a fortune for all who will have stock in the company.

Gen. Clarkson secured tickets to the Grand Opera at the Auditorium for Bishop Clawson and two daughters, Mr. Nye and himself and my wife and myself. The opera was Aida, by Verdi, and it was the grandest pageant and the finest singing I ever saw and heard on the stage.

16 March 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, March 16, 1895 A letter from Mr. Nye this morning requested me not to leave for the east this morning, but to stay till afternoon as he wanted me to see Mr. Green, the attorney of the Company, and to talk with me himself about the telephone business. He said there was a fortune in it for me. I ascertained that I could stop until afternoon and be in New York on Sunday night, so I concluded to comply with Mr. Nye’s request. I spent several hours at his rooms in conversation principally with Mr. Green, though before entering into details with him, Mr. Nye insisted that I should be the President of the Mountain Standard Telephone Co. I tried to decline, but he said that my reputation was national, and that I was clearly the man to be the President; besides, it could be arranged so that it would not be a tax upon me. He urged me to promise to accept, and I did.

I called upon Mr. Whitman, of the Chicago & North Western R.R[.] and had a pleasant conversation.

At 3:15 we took train on the Pennsylvania R.R. for New York.

17 March 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, March 17, 1895. We reached Jersey City at 9:35 p.m. and we were met by my son Frank. We drove to the Plaza Hotel and took up our quarters there. We enjoy the homelike feeling we have here—it is a very good house, as good if not better than any hotel I ever stopped at. The Planters Hotel at St. Louis is another about as good.

18 March 1895 • Monday

Monday, March 18, 1895. I have been reflecting upon this telephone business, and it appears clear to me that however much money there may be in it, I had better keep out of the presidency of the company. It will necessarily require considerable of my time to look after it properly, more than I can spare from other and more important duties. I am trying to relieve myself from everything I can, for I have been overloaded, and to take this new labor at the present time is, I feel, unwise. Besides, in justice to President Woodruff I should not, I think, engage in this. My first duty is to him as his counselor.

I called upon Mr. Nye at his office and met the President of the Company, Thurlow Weed Barnes and Judge Dunn, an old friend in Congress.

My son Frank went to Washington this evening. He will be there tomorrow and will bring his wife back with him by Wednesday morning. She is stopping with friends at Virginia to save expense. I propose to pay her hotel bill if she will come here. My wife and myself went to the Fifth Avenue Theatre and saw Mr. Crane in “My Wife’s Father”—a very enjoyable entertainment.

19 March 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, March 19, 1895 Suffering from something like la grippe today.

20 March 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, March 20, 1895. Frank and Mattie joined us at breakfast this morning. Mr. Abbot also came from Hartford. We spent some time with him arranging plans concerning the obtaining of the funds we need. It was arranged that he should correspond with parties at Providence, R.I. who had money to loan and arrange for an interview and we would go up and see them.

21 March 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, March 21, 1895 Had a call from Brother Hyrum S. Woolley.

Brother Clawson sent me the following dispatch from Chicago a day or two ago:

“Can arrange to have notes for Clara payable as follows: first payment in two years, next three years, next four years, next five years; interest five per cent. per annum. Will this be satisfactory? If not please say what will be. Answer.”

To which I made the following reply:

“Would greatly prefer first payment three years, others extended accordingly. You know imperative reasons for this. But if cant be done, other terms are accepted.”

Becoming impatient to know what had been done I sent a telegram to him, as follows:

“Heard nothing from you. What are your future movements”

This was sent back here to the hotel, he having left Chicago for New York.

22 March 1895 • Friday

Friday, March 22, 1895. Brother Clawson and daughters reached here this morning. He informed me that the terms proposed in my reply dispatch to him had been accepted. He brought the form of the notes that we are to sign, also a copy of the trust deed for my lot. There is one clause in this document that does not suit me; it reads, “Whereas, Wilford Woodruff, George Q. Cannon and Joseph F. Smith are justly indebted to James. S. Clarkson in the sum of $100,000.” This is not a true statement. We are not indebted to him in this amount or in any amount. This may be deemed necessary to make the trust deed legal; but the fact is, we never at any time bound ourselves to pay him anything, for he entered upon the work which he performed as our friend and out of a desire, as we understood, to relieve a suffering and oppressed people from grievous wrong. After it appeared that we were expected to do something in our turn for General Clarkson and Colonel Trumbo by giving them interests with us in our enterprises, and dissatisfaction arose on their part as to the extent of those interests, I had said to them that if it should require all the interest I might have in these enterprises to satisfy them, in addition to what they might receive, they should be welcome to it. It is with this feeling I proffer my house and lot. I have no interest, as yet, in any of these enterprises; but I can give this house and lot, and I give this property with pleasure, with the hope it will help to relieve us from the burden of obligation which has been placed upon us.

With Frank I called upon Mr. Joseph Manley at the Fifth Avenue Hotel and had an interesting conversation.

Called at Mr. Nye’s office, but he had gone to Washington.

Wrote a letter to Presidents Woodruff and Smith.

In the evening Frank and wife and myself and wife went to the American theatre and saw “The Fatal Card”, a play of the come-what old fashioned sort—that is, very exciting. We enjoyed it.

23 March 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, March 23, 1895. Bishop Clawson urged some decision on form of note and deed of trust submitted to me, as General Clarkson was anxious to close matters. I stated to him my objections to the form of the deed of trust; first, the one which I have mentioned concerning the statement that we are “justly indebted” to him; second, that if such a deed of trust were recorded its contents would within a few minutes be in possession of the newspapers and be sent broadcast over the land. It seemed to me this would be ruinous to General Clarkson, not to mention the effect it would have upon us. After debating (Bishop Clawson, Frank and I) as to the best way to overcome this difficulty and make a proper use of this property—which I said was ready to deed absolutely and unreservedly to any one who might be chosen—I framed a dispatch for Bishop Clawson to send to Gen. Clarkson, of which the following is a copy:

“Query respecting Deed of Trust: Will not its recording give publicity to transaction very undesirable to you and others? It would be heralded and made fearfully damaging. Would absolute deed from Geo. Q. Cannon to me and it put in escrow satisfy your friends?”

I called upon Mr. Wright, President of National Park Bank, and spoke with him about renewing the note of Cannon, Grant & Co. for $75,000. He said if I would call in upon my return from Washington it could be arranged. As before, he spoke in the warmest terms of praise of our people.

Went to Strauss & Sons with my wife and bought some glassware and china. Brother Webber had sent me a letter of introduction and they let me have the goods at wholesale.

I received the following dispatch from home this morning;

“Acting under instructions from Washington it is said prosecuting attorney will immediately commence proceedings against leading men. Can you have him restrained. Letter follows.”

It strikes me that the best step to take is for me to go to Washington and see the authorities there. I propose to go tomorrow (Sunday) evening. I sent the following dispatch home:

“Prospects not very bright on money matters. But are doing all possible. I go [to] Washington this evening [to] see [the] President and Cabinet about prosecutions.”

Frank and I met Brothers S. W. Richards and Hudson, who are missionaries here from home, on Broadway.

24 March 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, March 24, 1895. At 3:20 p.m. I took the Congressional Limited for Washington. My son Frank accompanied me to Jersey City. At 8:15 p.m. reached Washington and put up at the Shoreham. The hotel people are the same as when I was here before and they all appeared glad to see me.

25 March 1895 • Monday

Monday, March 25, 1895 I arose early and after breakfast went to Portland flats to see Secretary Morton, of the Department of Agriculture; but he had gone to the dept. I knew him to be an early riser in the old days. He tells me he is here every morning by 8 o’clock. I reached there by 8:30. He appeared glad to see me. I told him the object of my visit and showed him the dispatch I had received from home. He said he felt sure no instructions could have gone from here, or he would have heard of it. Certainly if anything of this kind had been in contemplation mention of it would have been made in some of the Cabinet meetings. It was only last evening that he had dined with Mr. Olney, the Attorney General, with whom he was on the most intimate terms, and the conversation had turned upon the conduct of the district attorneys, and while Utah had not been mentioned he felt sure it would have been had there been any prosecutions in view. He said, however, he would make inquiries about it. I spoke of a letter of introduction to Mr. Olney, and he called his private clerk in and dictated a very strong letter of introduction to the Attorney General for me; he endorsed me in the highest terms as a man of honor and truth, whom he had known for upwards of 23 years, and said he should look upon any courtesy extended to me as a personal favor to himself. I then repaired to the Dept. of Justice and had an interview with the Attorney General, who received me very kindly, and to whom I repeated the object of my visit and showed him the dispatch. He said that no instructions had been given and the subject had not been mentioned in his hearing. I repeated to him what I had already said to Mr. Morton concerning the good faith of our people in observing the law, especially the leading men, speaking strongly and emphatically regarding my own case and my course of life, to all of which Mr. Olney listened very attentively.

I felt it important to give each of the gentlemen whom I saw today my testimony concerning the good faith of the people, especially the leading men, in keeping the law.

After seeing Mr. Olney, I went to Mr. Perry’s room. He is the man who has charge of the business with the U.S. Marshals, &c. and I had a long conversation with him. I made fuller explanations to him, as he led me out by making inquiries. He promised to do anything in his power to keep things quiet in Utah.

From the Dept. of Justice I crossed to the Treasury building and had an interview with Secretary Carlisle, to whom I made similar explanations and statements to those I had made to Mr. Morton and Mr. Olney.

I then called at the White House, but I was told it was “close day”, a day reserved by President Cleveland to be free from visitors. The Usher, whom I know very well, thought it would be impossible for me to see the President today, as he was in conference with the Commissioner of Internal Revenue and two new Judges for the Indian Territory; so I left and called upon Mr. Hilary A. Herbert, the Secretary of the Navy, who was an old friend, we having served together some years in the House. He was engaged with a board of naval officers, but upon receiving my card excused himself and came to me, and I made the same explanations and statements to him as I had to the other gentlemen. He was very pleased to see me, and was interested in what I told him. He expressed himself warmly concerning the manner in which, when he visited Utah, John Q. had taken care of him in my absence, and sent his regards to him and to President & Sister Woodruff and all whom he had met there.

I then called at the War Department, to see Mr. Dan Lamont; but he was out, so I left my card.

I then returned to the White House with the intention of leaving my card, inasmuch as I could not see the president; but the Usher urged me to remain, as he thought I might be able to see the President if I would wait. He took my card and brought out word that if I would tarry a little while the President would like to see me. President Cleveland received me in the most cordial manner, and I had a full and free conversation with him upon the business which had brought me to Washington. He alluded to the attack in the New York Times on somebody. I said it was upon me. He said he had read the headlines, but had not perused the article. This gave me an opportunity of speaking upon affairs generally and my own particularly. I described how I had lived. I said no human being could put his finger on any spot where I had violated the law. Knowing that if anyone were attacked I would be as likely as anyone, I had been particularly scrupulous to do nothing that could be construed, even under the severe rulings of Judge Zane, to be an infraction of the law. When I spoke of Judge Zane’s rulings his comment was “they were very harsh, weren’t they?” I described my dining room when my family took their meals altogether, and I told him that each branch of my family ate at a separate table, and that I was so particular I did not eat at any table with a wife, but with my deceased wife’s children. He remarked “that was pretty hard”. I said that I wished to say to him as one gentleman would say to another in speaking on honor, that I had striven to obey the law, and my friends, the leaders of the people, had striven to do so also, and to advise the people to do so. We had fought the law in the courts with all our power, and had carried case after case to the U.S. Supreme Court; but when we surrendered and the Manifesto was issued, it was in entire good faith and we proposed to obey the law. Of course, I said, there may be violations of the law, sporadic cases—at this point he interjected the remark “there are in every community”—but I said that was not the general disposition of the people.

On the whole I felt much gratified at our interview, and I hope it will be productive of good. I feel very thankful to the Lord for the opportunities I have had of talking with these gentlemen, as it will have the effect to, perhaps, check any attempt that may be made to stir up trouble. I have borne my testimony to them as to our conduct and our disposition, and I feel that it has done good. If anything should arise which may make it necessary I can now take the liberty of writing to them. I did not call upon the Secretary of the Interior, Mr. Hoke Smith, as I am not acquainted with him; neither upon the Postmaster General, Mr. Bissell, who has resigned and will not long remain in office.

I took the 4 o’clock train for New York and reached there at 9:08 p.m.

Senators Pettigrew, Proctor and Dubois were on the train, and I had a long conversation with Senator Dubois concerning affairs in Idaho and the late Senatorial election, concerning which he was much exercised.

26 March 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, March 26, 1895 I felt tired today from the effect of my exertions yesterday. Sent the following telegram home:

“Visited Washington. Had interviews with Attorney General and three other Cabinet officers and very pleasant visit with President Cleveland. All talk kindly and favorably; deny that instructions have been sent to district attorney. Your letter not yet received.”

I called with Bishop Clawson upon Mr. Nye and Mr. Barnes, one the Manager and the other the President of the Standard Telephone Co. We lunched together. I tried to be released from the promise which I had made that I would be the President of the Mountain Standard Telephone Co., but Mr. Nye would not listen to my declination. He said it would not take my time, but they wanted my name. He invited myself and wife to go to the German Opera and see “Lohengrin”. Bishop Clawson and daughters and Mrs. Clarkson, Mr. Barnes and Mr.& Mrs. Nye were also to be of the party. I felt so unwell by dinner time that I determined not to go, so Mr. Grosvenor Clarkson took my place and he was the escort for his mother and my wife.

At the solicitation of Senator Pettigrew I met him and Senator Proctor this afternoon at the 5th Avenue Hotel. We had a very interesting conversation covering considerable ground. They spoke highly of Senator Dubois and his attitude upon our question. I promised them that while I did not propose to take part in Idaho politics, I would take pleasure in telling our people in Idaho what they said concerning Senator Dubois.

27 March 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, March 27, 1895. I called upon Mr. Wright, President of the National Park Bank about having Cannon, Grant & Co’s note for $75,000 due April 7th, renewed. To my request he repeated what he had said when I mentioned this before, “Certainly you can have it renewed. Do not give yourself any uneasiness about that.”

I called with Frank upon Mr. Hendricks, President of the Union National Bank; he was not in; but we had a visit with Mr. Leach, the Cashier.

We then called upon Judge Sanford and had an interesting visit with him.

I had a lengthy conversation with Mr. Sweet and Mr. Crane, of Idaho, who related many things in connection with the late senatorial contest.

28 March 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, March 28, 1895. I dictated a long letter to Presidents Woodruff and Smith, also a letter to my son Abraham.

I made a deed of my house and lot, which myself and wife signed, to Hiram B. Clawson, that it might be used for the purpose of raising the money for Gen. Clarkson. This deed was acknowledged before Mr. Thos. W. Adams, Notary Public; he is a clerk in the Plaza Hotel, and he and my son Frank signed the deed as witnesses.

I had a long conversation with my son Frank and Bishop Clawson concerning the form in which it is proposed by Gen. Clarkson to make out these papers. Frank stated that if it should become known that Gen. Clarkson was receiving $100,000 from us, others who had helped him in his work would feel very dissatisfied unless they could get something, and it would result very badly for Gen. Clarkson, and perhaps for us. The way already proposed to do this business would undoubtedly reveal this; for although after my suggestion concerning the danger which would result from the recording of the Deed of Trust, it had been decided not to record that deed, Frank plainly pointed out that any person who should get possession of one of those notes could not be refused if he insisted upon the deed being recorded, and in this way the whole transaction could be made public. Bishop Clawson was counseled reluctantly to admit this, and he went to Chicago full of the subject to present it in this light to Gen. Clarkson.

I had a long interview with Elder S. W. Richards, who is here presiding, over the situation of the small branches of the Church and the prospects and the need of more Elders.

Sister Susa Y. Gates, my wife’s sister, is here en route for home. She arrived yesterday morning. She went west this evening in company with Bishop Clawson and two daughters.

We went and saw Barnum & Bailey’s Circus.

29 March 1895 • Friday

Friday, March 29, 1895 Called at National Park Bank. Mr. Wright, the President, was just going out; but he told Mr. Hickok that he had promised to let Cannon, Grant & Co’s note for $75,000 be renewed. I spoke to the latter about a reduction of interest; but he said the Bank could not do that, as money was worth as much now as when the loan was contracted. Mr. Hickok made out a new note for $75,000 dated April 10th and payable four months from date (Aug. 10, 1895 which I signed “Cannon, Grant & Co.”

I afterwards called at the New York Security & Trust Co’s office and had conversation with Mr. Lamson. This Company is Cannon, Grant & Co’s creditor for a large amount.

In the evening myself and wife and Frank and wife called upon Mrs. Clarkson, who lives in the Hotel, and spent an hour or two there. She was very gracious and manifested a desire to show the women folks some attention.

30 March 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, March 30, 1895. Called upon Mr. Hopkins and was joined there by Frank.

After wards we called upon Mr. Nye, where I met Mr. Candler, ex-M.C. from Massachusetts, with whom I served in the House of Representatives.

We called at Mr. Boissevain’s Office (he has gone to Europe) to see his representative, Mr. Glynn, but he was out. I left my card.

At one p.m. we lunched at the “Down Town Club” with Mr. Moffatt and Gen. Palmer. We had a very pleasant visit with them. Mr. Moffatt has been very kind to me and has shown me great attention since I have been in New York this time. On parting he expressed the pleasure it had given him to become so well acquainted with me.

Frank and Mattie accompanied us from the Hotel to Jersey City where we took train for Chicago. I never stopped at any hotel where I felt more at home and have been treated more kindly than at the Plaza.

31 March 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, March 31, 1895. We had to change our sleeping car at Pittsburgh.

It rained heavily this afternoon—a much needed blessing to this region, where drouth has prevailed so long.

At 9 p.m. we reached Chicago and put up at the Auditorium Hotel, where we found Bishop Clawson and two daughters.

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March 1895, The Journal of George Q. Cannon, accessed June 25, 2024