“EQUAL RIGHTS FOR ALL” – July 17, 1889

In addition to her efforts in Oregon and Washington, Scott Duniway campaigned vigorously for suffrage in nearby Idaho for many years. By her own account, from 1876 to 1895, she traveled over 12,000 miles “by river, rail, stage, and buckboard,” delivered 140 public lectures in at least twenty-two cities and towns, addressed the territorial legislature in 1887, wrote hundreds of columns of correspondence and canvassed the territory “on foot from house to house” for the New Northwest. Indeed, for a time the family owned a ranch in the Lost River Valley. (( In the spring of 1886, while on a lecture tour of southern Idaho, Abigail and Willis filed claims on two large tracts of land near the villages of Hailey and Antelope Station. Their motives were largely speculative: They hoped that irrigation schemes and a proposed railroad route, to which Harvey Scott had tipped them, would pay off. Wearied by political brawling and Clara’s death, and perhaps envisioning a chance to make her cooperative economic ideals a reality, Abigail was persuaded to sell the New Northwest. In July, Ben, who missed his ranching days, and sons moved to Idaho while she remained in Portland to finish out the paper’s last year of publication. She spent two weeks in Idaho in January, 1887, but quickly returned to the warmth of her Clay Street house. Thereafter she visited only during summers. Her hopes for the Idaho properties never materialized and by the spring of 1892 she offered them for sale (Moynihan, Rebel 162-63, 187, 189-90; cf. L. Johnson 514; Kessler, “Siege of the Citadels: Search” 145; Richey, “Hard Scrabble” 92).))

The following address was delivered before the Idaho Constitutional Convention, meeting in Boise. It was made, in part, in response to lobbying by the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union for a prohibition rider to an equal suffrage article in the forthcoming state constitution. Fearing that the rider would doom the cause, Scott Duniway argued vigorously for an unqualified equal suffrage clause. Eventually, such an amendment would be submitted to the voters in referendum; in November, 1896, equal suffrage would come to the women of Idaho. ((The vote was overwhelming. Ironically, only Custer County, in which the Duniway ranch was located, voted against the amendment (Schwantes 164).))

Scott Duniway’s role in the Idaho campaigns was controversial. Her efforts over the years were undeniably prodigious. But her opposition to prohibition and her preference for quiet, “still hunt” tactics directed at leading citizens over noisy, public “hurrah” campaigns placed her at odds with the national leadership. Susan B. Anthony would order her to quit the decisive Idaho campaign in 1895 and confine her efforts to Oregon.

Scott Duniway would go, but not altogether quietly. Within two months of the culminating referendum, the Pacific Empire ((21 Jan. 1897. Unwelcome in the Idaho campaign and seeking to restore her journalistic voice, Scott Duniway joined this new weekly periodical, published by her “warm friend” Frances E. Gotshall, as editor in August, 1895. Unlike most prohibitionists who would have nothing to do with Scott Duniway, Gotshall, an officer in the state W.C.T.U. who also believed firmly that suffrage was just and right, admired her and often acted as conciliator between the two “warring factions” of Abigail and her allies on one hand and the W.C.T.U. and the prohibitionist wing of O.S.W.S.A. on the other (Montague 69; Kessler, “Siege of the Citadels: Search” 145-46).)) published an open letter, under the headline, “The Way Idaho Was Carried,” and prefaced by a comment from the publisher that it “ought to show the head officers of our N.A.W.S.A. how to run a campaign–and succeed.” In this letter, Scott Duniway summarized her efforts there, defended her tactics, and concluded: “I hereby make this explanation that all the friends may understand my reason for abandoning the field I loved so much, when victory was in sight. But I am resolved to return to Idaho, to become a free woman, as soon as my work is done in Oregon, to which I am now consigned, and in which I humbly hope I may be allowed to succeed.”

Fifteen months later, the Pacific Empire reprinted a version of this speech in an effort to influence the equal suffrage campaign then underway in Washington. Scott Duniway always blamed the 1887 disenfranchisement of Washington women on the equal suffrage alliance with prohibition, a charge she repeats here; thus, republication represented her effort to prevent history from repeating itself.

At the time of its delivery, this speech was reported in the Idaho Daily Statesman (July 19 and July 20, 1889). Two revised and condensed versions were published much later, in the Pacific Empire (June 9, 1898) ((It is a measure of the degree to which Scott Duniway and the Pacific Empire’s editorial outlook had diverged that, even though Gotshall had rejoined the editorial staff by this point, the newspaper contained the following disclaimer: “We print this week, by request, an address by Mrs. A. S. Duniway, but in so doing we wish to distinctly state that we assume no responsibility for the sentiments contained therein.”)) and in Path Breaking ((A. Duniway, Path Breaking 130-43. This version (including the faults discussed below), in turn, reappeared in Idaho Yesterdays 34.2 (1990): 21-27.)). There are substantial discrepancies among the three, including even the dates of the speech. ((Path Breaking records that the address was delivered on July 16 and reprinted in the Statesman on July 18 (131; the Woman’s Tribune also reported that it was given on the 16th [27 July 1889]). However, the Statesman version appears in two parts, on July 19 and 20, and records that the speech itself was delivered on July 17.)) The Path Breaking version, which is by far the best known and most widely available, is also the most abridged. For example, it omits five interesting paragraphs in which Scott Duniway speculates on the financial motives of prohibition leaders and relates these motives to the economic status of women generally. Both the Pacific Empire and Path Breaking versions omit a brief but telling condemnation of the Mormon practice of polygamy. Thus, I have reconstructed a complete, hybrid text from the three versions, with differences among them marked as follows:

« »: in PE only
{ }: in IDS only
< >: in PB only
/ /: in PE and PB, not in IDS
\ \: in PE and IDS, not in PB

In cases of nontrivial discrepancies among the three, alternate renderings appear in footnotes.

Mr. President ((William Horace Clagett (1838-1901): born Upper Marlboro, Maryland; moved with father to Keokuk, Iowa, 1850; attended public schools; studied law in Keokuk and at the law school in Albany, New York; admitted to bar, 1858, and commenced practice in Keokuk; moved to Carson City, Nevada, 1861, and Humboldt, Nevada, 1862; member, territorial house of representatives, 1862-63, and state house of representatives, 1864-65; practiced law, Virginia City, Nevada, Helena, Montana, and Deer Lodge, Montana; Republican delegate from Montana to 42<sup>nd</sup> Congress, 1871-73; authored legislation eventuating in creation of Yellowstone National Park; denied reelection; resumed law practice in Deer Lodge, Denver, Deadwood (Dakota Territory), Portland, and Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; president, Idaho constitutional convention, 1889; unsuccessful candidate, U.S. Senate from Idaho, 1891, 1895; resumed law practice in Spokane, Washington (Biographical Directory; “William H. Clagett“).)), and Members of the Convention, Gentlemen and Ladies ((IDS: “Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Convention:”)): {I deeply appreciate the honor you confer upon the humblest member of the otherwise unrepresented class when you permit one of us to come before your honorable body to join you for even one brief hour in the consideration of those topics which vitally interest all the people of our commonwealth.}

Although /much of/ what I have to say in your presence ((IDS : “to you” for “in your presence”)) tonight will differ materially from the utterances of other women who have been graciously accorded a hearing before your honorable body ((ISD: “whom you have graciously accorded a hearing.” Both Scott Duniway and W.C.T.U. President Henrietta Skelton addressed the convention (Myres 228).)), I think you will {all} concede, before I have finished, that women are learning to express their differences of opinion in a spirit of tolerance toward one another such as would have been beyond their power to exhibit before they had begun ((ISD: “began”)) to be imbued with the desire for liberty which now inspires them ((ISD: “by the spirit of liberty” for “with the desire for liberty which now inspires them”)).

Just as, in the infancy of the government of these ((ISD: “the”)) United States, the people who lived beyond our ((ISD: “the”)) Rocky Mountains, and /beyond/ the valley/s/ of the /Ohio and/ \the\ Mississippi /Rivers,/ formed newer and ((IDS, in certain error: “never any”)) broader conceptions of the fundamental principles of a true democracy ((IDS: “liberty” for “the fundamental principles of a true democracy”)) {under the plastic conditions of their new environment} than had been dreamed of by their ancestors /across the Atlantic seas/, so in these yet new«er» states of the Pacific Northwest, ((IDS: “the proposed incoming states, in which I am proud to claim a permanent interest” for “these yet new«er» states of the Pacific Northwest”)) the people of a new generation are forming {yet} broader conceptions of the glorious heritage in store for them and their children than their ancestors ever ((IDS, in probable error: “even”)) anticipated.

{I realize as I stand in this honorable presence that we, the people of Idaho, are making history. For although the class I represent is not otherwise represented in this body, the fact that you, gentlemen, have now for the second time convened to give woman a hearing, is proof that the world is moving in the right direction. Without attempting to consume the time of this Convention in rehearsing facts of history with which it is conceded you are all well acquainted, I will at once take up the subject which your chivalry has permitted us to consider, namely, the fundamental principles upon which the government of the United States is founded. The fact that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed is no longer disputed by any set of law makers; nor is its logical sequence ((Probably intended: “consequence”)) disputed–that taxation and representation are co-existent factors in all just governments.

You, gentlemen, have already occupied a fortnight in convention assembled, combining your wisdom, erudition, eloquence and logic in the incubation of a state constitution, to be presented to your electors–not woman’s unless by your permission–in the forthcoming month of October.

So far as you have yet gone in the completion of such parts of your work as has come under the observation of women in lonely stock ranch cabins (like ours in the Lost River wilderness ((Supra, n. 1.)) it has seemed to most of us that you have legislated wisely and well.

We cordially approve the public spirit you have manifested in considering the just claims of the executive and the judiciary as well as the legislative departments of a state government to such constitutional protection as well as such constitutional restriction as shall best insure the proper administration of public and private affairs among men.

We also cordially and heartily approve your manly determination to permit no alien or theocratic power to arise among us to wield our ballots and control our offices while bearing allegiance to a dynasty of priests. And} Although there is a /wide/ diversity of opinion among us ((IDS: “women”)) upon one question, which women ((IDS: “we”)) have sought to place before you /at a former hearing–I allude to/ ((IDS inserts “to-wit:”)) the trite one of prohibition, to which less than two per cent of the women of this ((IDS: “the”)) territory, or of the nation, adhere–there is a remarkable ((PB: “growing”)) unanimity of sentiment in our ranks concerning the justice of our plea for our own enfranchisement. ((IDS: “among us concerning our own enfranchisement” for “of sentiment in our ranks concerning the justice of our plea for our own enfranchisement”))

Women, like men, are rapidly outgrowing the idea that prohibition is a reformatory measure. When the idea was first placed ((IDS: “When first the idea was placed”)) before them by press and pulpit, a good many ((IDS “large numbers of them” for “a good many”)) grasped it as a sort of providential /opportunity for a popular/ compromise between their own long-repressed ((IDS: “growing”)) mentality and their desire to perform some public act for which press, people and pulpit would praise and pat and pet and pay them. ((IDS: “do something which all men might pet and pat and praise them for attempting” for “perform some public act for which press, people and pulpit would praise and pat and pet and pay them”)) {They soon discovered, also, that as an ally of the church they had not only found an avenue to fame and honor, but to emolument also.} These facts, and more especially the last named, /have/ so stimulated the repressed ambition ((IDS: “their long repressed and naturally emotional sensations”for “the repressed ambition”)) /of a few women/ that it has not been ((IDS: “was not”)) difficult for political cranks <and professional agitators>, who had /previously/ been kicked out of the old parties, to secure their cat’s-paw services in raking chestnuts for themselves from the fires of political controversy.

«Mr. President: It is the easiest thing on earth to make a prohibition speech. Anybody can recount the horrors of drunkenness and berate the evil influences of the saloon; and many a woman, who before had never jingled a coin in her pocket that she could call her own, has found an easy avenue for making money by engaging in this agitation.

I am not blaming women for earning money. I am simply stating a fact. Money is the motive power that moves the world.

No woman, especially one who works for prohibition in a professional way, is blind to the financial contingent, as any business man or church, or newspaper realizes when responding to the constantly recurring demands for money that invariably accompany her efforts.

Women have been servants without wages for centuries; and it is not to be wondered at that they have sought eagerly to enter this avenue of prohibition, the first that has opened to them wherein they might collect money, enjoying notoriety and travel, and at the same time receive the plaudits as well as the pay of man.

I do not mean that the rank and file of resident prohibition women are to be included in this category. It is of the itinerant leaders I speak; and I beg you, gentlemen, to remember that in pursuing this hobby, and never losing sight of its emoluments, they are only following the example of voters engaged in the same business. Be patient with them. You ought not to expect that they will cease to harp upon their chosen theme as long as they can make it pay. And this too, in spite of the fact that no attempt at coercion, or the enactment of any sort of arbitrary legislation has ever yet restrained any man in his voluntary desire to indulge his vices.» ((The IDS version of these five paragraphs (omitted from PB) is somewhat different in style, if not theme, as follows:

“It is the easiest thing on earth to make a political speech. Anybody can recount the horrors of drunkenness and the evil influences of the saloon. And many a woman who had never before jingled a coin in her pocket that she could call her own found an easy avenue for making money in this new departure. I am not blaming them for earning money. I am simply stating facts. Money is the motive power that moves the world. It is more potent than religion and more powerful even than love. No organization can long exist without it. It is as potent a factor with the church as with its adversary, the saloon. We all know it is not lost sight of by the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, and I may frankly add that the Woman Suffrage Association, as well as this honorable body, is obliged to admit and consider its claims. I am not complaining, but simply stating facts, that you may see that women are not blind to the financial situation. Hitherto their opportunities have been sadly circumscribed in money matters; and it is not to be wondered at that they have sought willingly the first avenues that have opened to them for making money by methods wherein they might work and travel, and at the same time receive the pay and plaudits of men. Multitudes of the great rank and file of prohibition women are not to be included in this category. It is of the leaders I speak, and I beg you, gentlemen, to remember that in pursuing this hobby and never losing sight of its emoluments, they are only following the example of men engaged in the same business. Be patient with them. They have plenty of material in sight in every town they visit upon which to expend their eloquence; nor can you expect they will cease to harp upon it as long as they can make it pay.

Of the philosophy of prohibition I need say but little. Every thinking man or woman who analyzes the subject closely reaches one conclusion, and that is that coercion, or any species of arbitrary law, never yet restrained any man in his vices.”))

The stale argument, /with which you have recently been regaled,/ that compares horse-stealing, against which we have prohibitory laws by common and undisputed consent, with liquor selling, <using,> /or buying,/ about which there are many differences of opinion, is most unfair, since there are no laws against horse-selling, provided the purchaser is ready with the cash and the horse he wants to buy ((IDS: “offered for sale” for “he wants to buy”)) is all its owner claims for it. In like manner is the comparison between the prohibition of liquor-selling and ((IDS: “about” for “between the prohibition of liquor-selling and”)) the prohibition of murder unfair, since the sale of /ropes,/ knives, guns ((IDS: “guns, knives”)) and ammunition is not prohibited, except under certain conditions, /to which all law-abiding people agree/; nor are humanity and horses forbidden to exist because some men are murdered and many horses are stolen.

{Of the evils of intemperance and the suffering of its victims I need not speak, since I could not hope to teach or edify you on these points.} I frankly confess that if I were the Omnipotent Power with my finite conception of mundane things, I should not hesitate to prohibit everything that I believe to be evil. ((IDS renders this sentence: “If I were the omnipotent power, I should not hesitate with my finite conception of things, to prohibit everything that is evil.”)) I would ((PB: “should”)) like to prohibit /every form of intemperance, <including> self-righteousness,/ woe, want ((IDS: “want, woe”)), /war,/ poverty, excessive riches, murder, arson, slander, /fever, contagion,/ lust, covetousness, <drunkards,> gluttony, lying, robbery, /cruelty,/ theft,–everything that debases any element of our humanity ((IDS: “our community” for “any element of our humanity”)); but since I can’t, and God in His wisdom plainly teaches me that this is not His plan, ((IDS: “He won’t” for “that this is not His plan”)) I have no desire, nor have the very large majority of women–I mean the self-poised, liberty-loving women whom I have the honor to represent– ((IDS: “nor has the very large majority of American women whom I have the honor to represent”)) the remotest desire ((IDS: “wish”)) to run a tilt against Omnipotence. \Clearly, the prohibition movement is dying out. Need I instance Connecticut, Oregon, Michigan, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Washington ((IDS: “Michigan, Massachusetts, Vermont, Oregon, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Pennsylvania”)), where it has lately met with overwhelming defeat, in support of this statement? Women, as well as men, have lost faith in its efficacy as a reformatory temperance method ((IDS: “it” for “its efficacy as a reformatory temperance measure”)), by {the} tens of thousands, within the past ten ((IDS: “few”)) years. ((These “defeats” were less definitive than Scott Duniway implies. The Connecticut legislature voted in 1880 to submit the question to popular vote, but the measure failed when the Senate refused necessary action in 1882. In Michigan, resolutions failed in the legislature in 1881 (when it obtained a simple majority but failed to obtain the required two-thirds majority) and 1883, but passed in 1887, where it was defeated at the polls. Rhode Island adopted constitutional prohibition in 1886 and repealed it in 1889. The Oregon legislature acted favorably in 1885 and 1887, submitting an amendment which was defeated at the polls in 1887. A measure failed in the Massachusetts legislature in 1881 but succeeded in 1887 and 1889, where it was defeated at the polls. In Pennsylvania, the lower house approved submission in 1881, the Senate not until 1889, at which time the public rejected it. The people of Washington rejected a constitutional amendment in 1889. While the Vermont legislature rejected a submission resolution in 1883, the state remained under a statutory prohibition first enacted in 1852 and strengthened in 1881; it did not back-slide until 1902, when it reverted to local option.

In addition, during this same ten-year period, prohibition amendments were adopted in Kansas (1880), Maine (1884), and North and South Dakota (1889); Iowa voters approved an amendment, only to have it subsequently overturned by the courts; in Ohio (1883) voters approved a prohibition amendment and defeated a license amendment, with the peculiar effect that the latter nullified the former by virtue of a requirement that the former receive a majority of all votes cast in the election; and the territory of Alaska was placed under Prohibition by President Grover Cleveland (1884). Finally, substantial prohibition agitation in at least 14 other states typically achieved increasing success in the legislatures even if ultimately rejected in popular votes (Cherrington 176-84). Given her belief that suffrage’s merits are measured best by acceptance among “leading citizens” rather than the “vicious” masses, there is no small irony in Scott Duniway’s interpretation of these events, which relies on popular voting results and ignores increasing legislative support.

Interestingly, Scott Duniway omitted this section when this speech was reprinted in Path Breaking in 1914. Perhaps this reflects the declining salience of increasingly dated historical events. Perhaps it also reflects a desire not to appear foolish in light of subsequent events, which built toward national prohibition with the passage of the Eighteenth Amendment in 1919 (Cherrington 249-364).))\

There were, in the years 1886-7 ((Inexplicably (but clearly intentionally, as the date is repeated a few paragraphs hence), PE says “in the year 1896.” However, Cherrington records no noteworthy temperance battles in Washington that year, and Larson reports that the territory’s next suffrage campaign did not occur until 1897-98 (“Washington” 55). Perhaps this is an unpardonably sloppy attempt to apply the lessons of an earlier time and different place to the events of 1896 in Idaho.)), a few women in the Territory of Washington, who, after they had gotten the ballot, which came to them unawares and unbidden, became unduly intoxicated with their new possession. And these women unwisely yielded to the counsels of a few peripatetic women<, non-voters> from the East, who, learning that Washington’s women had been endowed with ballots, sought them out (on a handsome salary) and induced them to permit idealists and cranks to use their ballots as cat’s-paws, in a vain attempt to rake their own chestnuts from the fires of politics. But the majority of even these women long ago discovered, under the humiliation of the great defeat that followed, which logically acted to deprive ((PE: “which naturally deprived”)) them, and through them all women <of Washington>, of their right to vote–which they had just learned to prize–that what women need, for the purification of the race, is not arbitrary laws ((PE: “an arbitrary law”)) for the coercion of men, but liberty for themselves, that they may gradually rise above the conditions of subjugation against which their forefathers rebelled, under which, as servants without wages, taxed without representation and governed without consent, so many mothers are compelled to rear a progeny of drunkards. ((In IDS this paragraph reads: “Many women in Washington Territory who had never lifted voice or finger to secure the ballot before it came to them, but who unwisely yielded to the counsels of women from the East, who sought them out on a handsome salary to induce them to use their newly found ballots as cats-paws in the hands of idealists and cranks, have discovered, under the humiliation of the great defeat that has deprived them temporarily of the ballots they had just learned to prize, that what women need for the purification of the race is not an arbitrary law for the coercion of men, but liberty for themselves that they may rise above the conditions of subjugation against which their forefathers rebelled, and under which they are now so often compelled to mother a progeny of drunkards.”

This obviously is a much-abridged version of her argument in “Ballots and Bullets.”))

In Wyoming, where \the\ women had been voters long enough to learn /a modicum of political/ wisdom before the prohibition craze became the fashion, better counsels prevailed, and no such innovation exists ((IDS: “has been introduced”)), to act as a boomerang against their ballots, /as destroyed the suffrages of Washington’s women. (This is equally true today of Colorado, Utah and Idaho <and other Pacific Coast States>, where women are voters«, now».)/

I am making no remonstrance ((IDS: “fight”)) against prohibition, per se. {since} I realize that everybody has a right to ride a pet hobby, \even when riding it to its death,\ provided, of course, /that/ he doesn’t strike down other people’s liberties ((IDS: “the principles of liberty” for “other people’s liberties”)) with the hoofs of his hobby horse. But I wish I might convince every man in this convention that most ((PB: “the majority of”)) women realize, as keenly as {any of} you do, the fact that every woman who sits behind the prison bars of her present political environment, lifting her manacled hands to men and saying, “Give us the ballot and we’ll ((IDS: “that we may” for “and we’ll”)) put down your whiskey,” is not only telling a falsehood ((IDS: “an untruth”)) (since all the force of bullets ((IDS: “arms”)), to say naught of ballots, would ((PB: “could”)) never do it unless men should voluntarily put it down themselves), merely ((PB: “but actually”)) offers to most men the strongest possible inducement ((IDS: “the strongest possible inducement to most men”)) to answer, “Very well! We’ll see that you don’t get the ballot at all, if you intend to use it as a whip! /We don’t propose to let women carry a whip hand over us!/”

«What the women are asking, gentlemen; I mean» What the great majority of the women of the Pacific Northwest are asking<, gentlemen> ((In IDS, this paragraph begins: “What the women ask, gentlemen, the great majority of the women of the territories are asking for I mean;”)) ; women who have no time to spend in getting up ((IDS: “running to” for “getting up”)) ice cream festivals to induce men to fill their stomachs with an indigestible compound–for a financial consideration–in the interest of a prohibition ((PE: “the W.C.T.U.” for “a prohibition”)) fund–festivals that send them to the dramshop for an antidote ((IDS says simply: “an indigestible compound for financial consideration–that sends them to the dramshop for an antidote”)) ; /what/ women /are asking/ who study ((IDS: “look upon”)) the practical side of every question; women who ((IDS: “subject and” for “question; women who”)) are not sent out as the paid representatives of any set of men or /women, or of/ any political party, is that you will engraft into the fundamental law of this commonwealth ((IDS: “Idaho” for “this commonwealth”)) a clause in your chapter on suffrages ((IDS: “suffrage”)) and elections {providing} that, other things ((IDS: “rights and qualifications”)) being equal, except the right to bear arms, which custom ((IDS: “nature”)) accords to men ((IDS: “man”)), and the far ((IDS: “still”)) more perilous right to bear <soldiers as> armor-bearers (which nature imposes upon women) ((IDS substitutes “which the same inexorable power assigns to woman”)), there shall be no restrictions placed upon the /right of/ suffrage on account of /the incident of/ sex.

{Do this wise and patriotic thing, gentlemen of the convention, and your constitution will be adopted by spontaneous combustion. You will put power in the hands of your wives and mothers with which as a home element they can level blows of irresistible strength at the demon of polygamy that now menaces their daughters in many sections of the southern and eastern portion of this rising commonwealth. ((In a bid to preserve the Mormon theocracy against an influx of Gentiles, Utah women had gotten the vote in 1870. Scott Duniway strongly opposed the “great and growing evil of Mormonism,” likening polygamy–the “Utah sin”–to prostitution. But she just as strongly opposed “one-sexed” efforts (which came to fruition in 1887) to curb Mormon political power by disenfranchising Mormon women (she did not object to disenfranchising Mormons of both sexes), and argued that “the unhallowed institution” could be overthrown only when “the wifehood and motherhood of America have the ballot” (Weatherford 103-05, 142; New Northwest 25 Aug. 1876, 15 Jan. 1880, 23 Dec. 1880, 15 Dec. 1881).))}

\While I can and do point to Wyoming, where {the} women have voted for {the last} two decades, in proof that women’s ballots will not bring prohibition; and also to Washington, where it is now known that the ((IDS: “for three and a half years a” for “it is now known that the”)) majority of {the} women refused, «at the election of 1896,» to use the ballot as a whip to coerce men into leading strings as though they were little children, I must ((IDS: “do”)) say{, without prospect of contradiction,} that women are quite as much opposed to drunkenness in husbands as men are opposed to drunkenness in wives. But never, until mothers, everywhere, are ((IDS begins this sentence: “And when women are everywhere”)) free and equal with fathers ((IDS: “men”)) before the law, can they cease, every now and then, to produce a man ((IDS: “they will cease to rear children” for “can they cease, every now and then, to produce a man”)) of such weak moral fiber that he is ((IDS: “they are”)) unable to resist temptation.\

Oh, gentlemen! When you grant us the right of suffrage we shall ((PE: “will”)) be ((In IDS, this paragraph begins: “Grant us the right of suffrage, gentlemen, and we will not only pledge to you our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor in aiding you to adopt this constitution, but we will, when it is adopted, feel”)) so proud of you and of ourselves that we will proclaim the glad tidings of our freedom among all the <crowded> /states and/ cities {and countries} of the East, and by so doing /we can ((PE: “will”))/ turn the tide of immigration into Idaho, just as we exultantly turned it into ((IDS: “directed it to” for “turned it into”)) Washington <Territory> during the {period of} three and a half years ((In IDS, this paragraph, following this point, concludes: “when we could do so consistently, because Washington was then ‘the land of the free and the home of the brave.’”)) of her greatest prosperity, when her women were voters; <just as we will do some day for Oregon;> just as we will do again for Washington, when she again becomes “the land of the free and the home of the brave,” as she was known to be before her women’s ballots were beaten down by the inevitable recoil of prohibition boomerangs.

{But, gentlemen!} Too well I know ((IDS: “I well know”)) there is no other attribute of our humanity ((IDS: “dogma” for “attribute of our humanity” that dies so hard as tyranny. I know how prone many men are to delude themselves with the fancy that they are “heads of the family.” ((In IDS, this sentence reads: “I know that many of you, if married, may delude yourselves with the idea that you are ‘heads of the family.’”)) I know how persistently many ((IDS: “your”)) wives–cunning diplomats–foster this transparent delusion. ((IDS: “persuade you that you are the supreme power in their households” for “foster this transparent delusion”)) Men’s ((IDS: “Your”)) vanity and self-love are fed upon this sophistry/, although they fully understand that it is sophistry/. Men are very human. God made them to match the women. ((In IDS, these two sentences are replaced with: “For you are very human; quite as much so as ourselves; and we are by no means perfect.”))

We know every one of our opponents’ ((IDS: “your” for “our opponents’”)) threadbare arguments against our liberties by heart. You say we “mustn’t vote because we cannot fight,” ((IDS: “You say we must fight if we vote;”)) forgetting, or pretending to forget, that life’s hardest battles, everywhere, are fought by the mothers of men in giving existence to the race. ((An allusion to poet Joaquin Miller’s “The Bravest Battle” (198). One of her favorites, Abigail would recite it in “Woman in Oregon History” (1899), “How to Win the Ballot” (1899), and “Home and Mother” (1914).)) You say, “women do not want to vote,” ((IDS: “You say we do not wish to vote”)) when all the opportunities we have ever had to vote have been as freely utilized by us as by yourselves. ((IDS: “in that direction as your own” for “by us as by yourselves”)) You say, “If women want the ballot, let them ask for it,” ((IDS: “You say if we wish the ballot let us ask for it”)) when we have been asking for it, {for} lo, these forty years!

You say, “bad women will vote,” when you well know that bad men vote, and claim the ballot for their protection{, while you do not say them nay}. /Why deny protection to one class of human sinners and accord it to another?/ You say we “must not ((IDS: “mustn’t”)) sit on juries,” though ((IDS: “when”)) ever and anon a woman is to be tried /by a jury/. May we not look forward, gentlemen, ((IDS: “May we not, gentlemen, look forward”)) to the day when a woman ((IDS: “women” for “a woman”)) may be tried by a jury of her ((IDS: “our”)) peers?

{I do not mean that all, or nearly all of you will say these harsh, illogical things. Quite a number of you I know to be in favor of woman’s full and free enfranchisement; and I sincerely hope that all of you will be so convinced of the justice of our plea that you will not hesitate to make your names immortal as the first body of constitution writers under the sun who have ever dared to be wholly just to the mothers of the race. But, oh! gentlemen, if, in the extreme caution that induces other men to uphold their own prejudices in opposition to the aspirations of women, you do not dare to grant us the free boon of full enfranchisement, we have another plan to lay before you which we believe and hope will not fail to meet your unqualified approval.

Remember that we ask you, appealing to your chivalry, your sense of justice and patriotism; appealing to your spirit of liberty and honor, to grant us, as a part of the fundamental law, our free, unquestioned right to vote. But, if you will not grant this request, then we pray you, as a compromise with your consciences and with us, to put a clause in your chapter on suffrage and elections providing that the Legislature may, at any session, pass a bill extending the elective franchise to women on equal terms with men. Surely you will not compel your wives and mothers, under a Constitutional law of the State of Idaho, which you have denied us, the right to any voice in framing or adopting; surely you will not compel us to go before the ignorant and prejudiced voting classes of men, with our hands on our mouths and our mouths in the dust; beseeching half-fledged boys, who have just attained their majority and have not ceased struggling with weak moustaches; or praying foreign-born voters, who cannot speak our language or comprehend the first principles of our free institutions–surely you will not so humiliate us, and so outrage our sense of justice as to remand us to these persons, only to be sent away, when we ask for liberty, with a brutal No, as has been so often done in older States when we asked these voters to amend their constitutions! You have opportunity to so frame your Constitution, in the very inception of your government, that your picked men of the Legislature may be allowed to sit in final judgment upon our plea for ballots.} ((PB condenses the preceding two paragraphs, and omits the political strategizing, as follows: “Women who seek the ballot for liberty’s sake are not proposing to govern men. We are seeking for an opportunity to govern ourselves. We appeal to your sense of justice, your chivalry, your patriotism, your honor, as we ask you to grant to us, as part of the fundamental law, our free, unquestioned right to a voice in the government which we are taxed to maintain and to whose laws we are held amenable.” PE does the same, only ending more simply with “unquestioned right to vote.”))

The eyes of the world are upon these /new states and/ territories /of the Pacific Northwest/. The freedom-loving spirit of our Western men is our proudest boast. ((IDS: “the West has long passed into a proverb” for “our Western men is our proudest boast”))

Shall we, the women of this border land, who have shared alike your trials and /your/ triumphs–shall we not be permitted to go up to the national capital ((IDS: “Washington” for “the national capital”)) \next winter,\ bearing aloft{, like the women of our neighboring Territory Wyoming,} the banner of our freedom? Shall we not have the proud distinction of proclaiming to the older states of the Union that the chivalry and honor of our fathers, husbands, and sons outrank«s» their own? May we not tell the world that these are the men who scorn to accept any rights for themselves which they would deny to their mothers, sweethearts, wives, sisters and daughters? ((IDS replaces the preceding two sentences with “Shall we not have the power to proclaim everywhere the chivalry and honor of our own Constitution makers, and tell the world that they scorned to accept a right for themselves which they would deny to the mothers of men?”)) {Will you not so equip us with the watchword of liberty that we can inspire all the world to turn its eyes upon Idaho as the promised land–the land of free women and brave men?}

/I pause just here to read a note, brought to me from the audience a moment ago by a page./

“What do you woman suffragists {who are not prohibitionists} propose to do with the whisky traffic?” asks /the writer,/ an excellent and earnest little woman, /whom I recognize as one/ who has worked hard for prohibition because she has had no other channel in which to work, and thereby ease the struggling spirit within her /which is clamoring for something practical to do/. Equal Suffragists ((IDS: “We”)) answer: “Tax whiskey, and all other intoxicants, as heavily as their traffic will bear{, not so heavily as to amount to prohibition, for experience proves that the ends of justice are thus defeated, for then the dealers will sell and pay no tax at all.} /Control and regulate that which you cannot destroy./” I know all the arguments against the liquor ((IDS: “whisky”)) tax by heart. Time was when I supposed it ((IDS: “the tax on liquors” for “it”)) was what men call it, a license. But study of the question ((IDS: “subject”)) long ago convinced me that it is a tax. (( PE: “convinced me of my mistake”; IDS: “convinced me of the mistake”. Scott Duniway had offered a resolution condemning license as a governmental “indulgence . . . to commit sin” at the Oregon State Temperance Alliance convention in 1875 (“Progressive Party Luncheon” n. 18). She explained why a license is more accurately seen as a tax, and why she had changed her mind, in the fourth of her seven-part series on “The Temperance Problem” (New Northwest 29 July 1886).))

{Intemperance is among us like an overflowing, dark, deep and pestilential river.} Liquors are sold because men demand them, drink them and pay for them. This demand is a perennial fountain, rising in the desires of the consumer. The liquor traffic is like a mighty river that is always flowing, flowing, obedient to a cause. You may change its channels here and there, <or drive it into hiding now and then,> but you cannot stop its flow. ((IDS replaces these four sentences with: “Liquors are sold because men buy them, and the river of intemperance flows because it has a perennial fountain in the desires of the consumer. Men who drink immoderately are not the chief source of its supplies. But, no matter whence the supplies come, the river is always flowing, flowing. You may obstruct it here and there, but you cannot stop its flow.”))

At ((PB: “Near”)) the mouth of the Mississippi there is an immense swamp. So dark and pestilential is it that yellow fever lurks in its murky edges ((IDS: “the marshes” for “its murky edges”)) and a green slime crawls upon the top of the stagnant water, among which /poisonous/ reptiles play /at/ hide and seek.

“Prohibit the accursed thing!” cries out the theorist. “Don’t tamper, or temporize with it /in any way/, but put it down! /Stop its flow!/”

Vain mandate, vain prescription, vain endeavor! ((IDS: “Vain hope, vain mandate, vain endeavor.”)) You may ((IDS: “If you”)) cover the slum and slime with a prohibition plaster/; but/, be the plaster ((IDS: “it” for “the plaster”)) ever so strong, the virus will /still/ exude; or, worse /still/, it will burrow deep and yet deeper ((IDS: “deeper and deeper” for “deep and yet deeper”)) into hidden places, marking its track by /increased/ desolation and death.

“Then, what is the /final/ remedy?” /is asked by questioning ones, who are not yet willing to be convinced that they can err in judgment./

“Build levees upon the banks of the liquor traffic,” says science, and so says common sense. ((IDS renders this sentence as two: “Science says ‘Build levees upon its banks.’ And so says common sense.”)) Regulate what you cannot destroy. You build houses to shield yourselves from the cold and heat. You prepare safeguards against fire and flood, and you must protect yourselves against intoxicants by confining their traffic to a margin as narrow as will contain their flow. You must keep the dykes high and in order. ((IDS replaces the preceding three sentences with: “Confine the stream to a limit as narrow as will contain its flow, and keep the dykes high and in order!”)) This is “high license,” falsely so called. It is a levee upon the banks of the stream, of which even those /engaged in the traffic,/ who use the current ((IDS: “stream”)) for financial reasons, can recognize the need/; and they will help you to maintain the dykes/.

<[The foregoing is a declaration that, in the light of recent events, may well be deemed prophetic. For are not liquor men engaged at present in regulating the traffic as never before?] ((This editorial interpolation was added when Scott Duniway was preparing the speech for republication in Path Breaking.)) >

Give us this ((IDS: “the”)) levee, gentlemen, and, above everything else, ((IDS: “oh” for “above everything else”)) give us ((IDS: “woman”)) the ballot, with which to /help you/ build it high and strong, and we will help you build most loyally. ((IDS: “right royally” for “most loyally”. The IDS version ends here.))

/Our plea is against prohibition of the gravest sort; the prohibition which prohibits us from using our right to vote.

We ask that you remove this ((PE: “you to remove that” for “that you remove this,”)) disability; to prohibit us from voting no more forever.

We ask «for» nothing but our right to use our voice<s, as your companions and co- workers,> in making the laws under which we, as well as you, must live; laws which we are taxed to maintain, to which we, equally with yourselves, are held amenable.

<We could not rule men if we would, and would not if we could.> Here, gentlemen, we rest our case, in the serene belief that the first decade ((PE: “dawn” for “first decade”)) of the twentieth century will witness the full and free enfranchisement of every law-abiding woman of this great galaxy of new and vigorous young states of the Pacific Northwest, which need claim no higher distinction than to be forever known as the <original> Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave./

<Hoping that every voter who receives this document will weigh its contents with such care as its importance demands, and feeling that all such will vote “Yes” on every constitutional amendment which comes before them in behalf of human liberty, just as they would wish us to vote for their enfranchisement if the power were ours to withhold or bestow it, and with serene reliance upon the liberty-loving, chivalrous nature of every public-spirited man, I shall now and always appeal for the inalienable right of self-government for every man and woman who obeys the new Commandment, given to us by our Elder Brother, “That ye love one another.”> ((The form in which Path Breaking is printed suggests that this paragraph concludes the speech (three asterisks, ostensibly dividing the speech text from Scott Duniway’s surrounding narrative, appear in the line following this paragraph). However, several factors, including the fact that it does not appear in either of the earlier versions and its mention of those who “receive this document,” strongly suggest that this paragraph was appended later, quite possibly in November, 1899, when this speech was reproduced in the first issue of a monthly bulletin called “The Campaign Leaflet,” which would be distributed widely during Oregon’s third campaign for suffrage in 1900.))


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