According to one historian, 1912 represented “the high tide of Northwest progressivism.” That year, Idaho joined Washington and Oregon in adopting the initiative, referendum, and recall, while Oregon joined her sisters in approving woman suffrage. And many reformers, typically Protestant, middle-class Republicans, were swept up in third-party politics, when former Republican chief executive Theodore Roosevelt again ran for President, this time as the head of his own Progressive, or “Bull Moose,” Party. Roosevelt outpolled incumbent Republican William Howard Taft nationally, and carried Washington, but lost to Democrat Woodrow Wilson, who carried Oregon and Idaho.1 The women of Webfoot fared better, although the margin was slim: Out of 118,369 votes cast, their majority was 4,161.2

Although progressive, reformist currents were diverse and far-reaching, the third-party experiment was short-lived and, arguably, counterproductive: By 1916, Roosevelt had returned to the Republican fold and progressives discovered that they had surrendered the party to conservatives bent on undoing past reforms.3 But during its limited life, the local party organization invited Scott Duniway to its weekly luncheon at the Portland Hotel. She must have seemed like one of them: a Protestant, middle-class professional and reform-minded Republican. Certainly, woman suffrage was a legacy of progressivism’s faith in human reason and the innate morality of persons, tenets that Abigail shared.4

However, prohibition was one reform, embraced by many Progressives, that Scott Duniway never could accept. In earlier days, fearing prohibition’s “boomerang” upon woman suffrage, she sought to separate the two causes in the public mind. But now her attention would shift to battling prohibition itself, particularly an amendment that would be on the November ballot.5 While busily readying her autobiography for publication (and for use in the opposition campaign), Abigail on this Wednesday argued her case for an hour and a half.

Her address is retrospective in form and reflective in tone. From the vantage point of success, Scott Duniway looks back over her long involvement in the equal suffrage cause, relating events in historical narrative. She argues, familiarly, that the linkage of the franchise with prohibition delayed the former’s victory. What is different and very interesting about her treatment of the subject here is her narrative of the personal experiences that led her to oppose prohibition even as she supported temperance. Perhaps nowhere else is her defense of individual responsibility so convincing; supported, as they are here, by stories of her husband and sons (among others), her theological arguments for personal restraint, rather than legislation, seem utterly genuine.

A second significant aspect of this address concerns Scott Duniway’s economic views. She elaborates the theme, touched on only briefly in her 1909 O.S.E.S.A. Presidential address, that homemaking should be a remunerative occupation, organized like a business. Although it is easy to reduce Scott Duniway’s arguments from principle to making woman’s enfranchisement the ultimate, final aim, rather than means to other ends, this does not mean that she naïvely thought of equal suffrage as a panacea. Discussions like this one make it clear that Scott Duniway believed that equal rights for women required a measure of economic independence and security as well.

It took forty-two years for Abigail to prevail on the Woman Question; she would not live long enough to prevail on the prohibition question. Ten days after this speech, the newspapers reported that Oregon was to become the “keystone” in the national prohibition movement, with Prohibition Party national chairman, Virgil G. Hinshaw, of Chicago, “personally to conduct the fight” during a two-month-long visit to the state.6 The following day it was announced that a Scott Duniway nemesis, Maria Louise Trenholm Hidden (part of the rival faction that had attempted the 1906 O.S.E.S.A. coup) would be a candidate for state representative from Multnomah County on the Progressive ticket.7 Prohibition would pass in Oregon in 1914.

The text is taken from a heavily hand-revised typescript in Scrapbook #1 of the Abigail Scott Duniway Papers. A significantly abbreviated version of this speech was reproduced as an eleven-page pamphlet entitled “True Temperance, By The Nestor8 of the Woman Suffrage Movement, Mrs. Abigail Scott Duniway,” and issued by “A Real Temperance Alliance,” the United States’ Brewers’ Association of New York.9 While Scott Duniway claims here that such charges are a thing of the past, this appropriation undoubtedly confirmed the worst fears of those who suspected that she indeed was, and always had been, “sold to whiskey.”10

While Scott Duniway’s editing is often very difficult to decipher, I have followed it whenever possible. Typescript material absent from the abbreviated pamphlet version is noted in “<>”. Pamphlet material missing from the typescript is noted in “\\”.

<Madam Chairman11, members of the Progressive Party, Gentlemen and Ladies: In accepting your kindly and hospitable invitation to be present on this occasion, I had no intimation that I was to be considered the principal speaker of the occasion, nor had I known until this morning that the subject chosen for me to speak upon was the one against which the most formidable opposition could possibly be brought to bear.>

Going back through the years that are gone, I recall my early childhood and the time when my Father12 and my Mother13 raised their family upon the strength of individual character. They said to us, and our children have echoed the sentiment all along the line, that the very strongest prohibition that could come to anyone came from himself, from within, not from the outside. They taught us that the very first official act of which the Adamic period has any record was that God placed temptation in the way of the people and commanded them to resist it <at their peril, and> I have never yet been able to see any stronger or better argument in favor of the broadest liberty for14 all the people and of the individual himself than in that wonderful rule laid down for humanity in the very beginning of its history.

<Coming along through the different periods of my own humble life, I recall the days when as a humble, struggling wife and mother, on a pioneer farm in a cabin home, I churned the butter for market, which paid the taxes, I tended the poultry, I milked the cows, I raised the babies, I chased the coyotes away from the sheep, I followed all sorts of menial occupations of any kind that belong to the pioneer woman in any of the frontier walks of life, little dreaming that it would ever come to my lot to stand before the public in high and lowly places, to meet blame, to meet praise, to meet both together often, and always trying to steer my bark of liberty, straight through all the narrows of opposition.>

Finally, coming into this Equal Rights movement, <of which you all have heard much, and which, at last, in my great Pacific States Bailiwick has become the law of this quiet progressive land,> I came into my15 first <public> temperance work, being <made> Secretary and Acting Chairman of a constitution gotten up by the State Temperance Alliance, <and> sending a delegation from the <despised and hated> Equal Suffrage Association to attend its annual meetings16. <We were met with all sorts of opposition.> We were prohibited from entering the Alliance as delegates, <after we had gotten it up. We were called “setting hens,” “belligerent females,” “disturbers, and breakers up of the home.” It was like> \and\ pandemonium <was> broken17 loose for two successive years when the <Temperance> Alliance met. <All this time equal suffrage forces [?] opposed the idea of getting prohibition into politics. The prohibition of equal suffrage was the uppermost thought in the minds and hearts [?] of the men who attempted to engineer that Alliance. Finally, however, there came a split, a division, and the disappointed minority, who could no longer prohibit the women from entering the Alliance, seceded and set up a little prohibition Union for themselves.18

Then came an open demand for political prohibition of the liquor traffic, and when I began to oppose it as unchristian and unAmerican, at once to get into a fight [sic]. I had had no organized body but the church to fight us at first. The church made the first organized effort to prohibit the enfranchisement of women. But, after the church began to learn that it might use woman suffrage as a “short cut to prohibition,” it began to stand in a half hearted way for the enfranchisement of women, thus partly eliminating one class of prohibition but [?] attempting [undecipherable] by [?] another. The church [undecipherable] to oppose liberty, compelling one [?] to [undecipherable] another another element19, and that was called the liquor traffic, which is not confined, and never has been, to men who are engaged in the business simply, but appeals to all the supporters and proponents of the business, who are its customers and consumers, who create and carry out its demands. The work for prohibiting the prohibition of equal suffrage went on for years before the prohibition agitation against the liquor traffic had gotten into politics.>

The enfranchisement of women had carried in the Territory of Washington in 1883. The prohibition movement came up <in another shape> \immediately\ thereafter, <in attempts> to prohibit the liquor traffic.

<It is very easy to fight an enemy. I rather enjoy the attempt of an enemy [to] knock a chip from my shoulder. But I want it to be a good-natured, open, honest fight, always. However, I did not oppose the prohibition movement as long as it seemed [?] to work openly, and as I believed honestly, for the prohibition of the liquor traffic, till equal suffrage began to be aided secretly by men engaged in the liquor traffic, and their aiders and supporters. While we were in the midst of our move for the enfranchisement of the women of Washington Territory, before the Legislative Assembly of 1883, the President of the National Liquor League, in Chicago, telegraphed to the President of the Senate in Olympia, and ordered that prohibition be accepted by the people of Washington while they were a territory. I could not attend the prohibition fight that disenfranchised [?] the women of the Territory, though urged to do so by my clientele in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. The trailing wing of the death angel was hovering over my home. My only daughter20 was in the last throes of a fatal illness, and I could not leave her side; but I wrote to friends in Olympia, urging them to stop that prohibition movement, because it prohibited women’s right to vote.21

A woman whose son was in the telegraph office of a Washington Territory town, had come to me and told me that her son had heard an order from the Liquor League’s President residing in Chicago, commanding the Legislature to give the women, while Washington was yet a territory, all the rope they wanted. But I could not act, and the husbands of the women who wanted me to come to Olympia were not willing that their wives should act, unless I would be there to take in my own breast all the barbed arrows of the opposition. So the enfranchisement of women went by default, when the next Legislature met; and the territory, being on the eve of statehood, men and women not believing in this iron bound movement that had come calling itself prohibition, shut the iron gates of a state constitution in the faces of the women, leaving them disenfranchised on the outside. I am relating history that will continue to be verified long, long after everyone of us has passed to the unseen shores.>

There came up, by this time, a band of political agitators. Men and women who undertook to make money by the prohibition movement. Some of them were honest, but most of them were demagogical.22 < [A]nd when I tried to hold in abeyance, not only the prohibition of the enfranchisement of women, but the prohibition of what men called the liquor traffic, there came the cry from women in whose interest I had toiled and slaved, and borne for a quarter of a century the opposition that comes to every genuine movement; and tried to trample me in the dust. They said I was “sold to whiskey,” forgetting that whiskey was delighted all the time to see this conflict coming up between prohibition of one kind and prohibition of the other kind, crushing women’s enfranchisement between the upper and nether millstones of the two great movements. Now it is a well known law of nature that whenever two opposing forces come into conflict, the result is inertia. Prohibition means the doctrine of force. Equal suffrage means the doctrine of freedom, and when the two came into collision, inertia was the result. Now, what has to be done? The enfranchisement of women had gone abroad through the circulation of my newspaper, “The New Northwest,” which was carried on for sixteen years. I went everywhere, up and down, and to and fro, in this great bailiwick of Oregon, Washington and Idaho, spreading the light of liberty. I had seen women, in my humble occupation as a drudge on a farm, devoted to all sorts of occupations, toil, hardship and suffering. I had thought, until I got into business, that I was about the only woman that looked upon these questions as I did, and I felt I had no right to complain, for my husband was not a drinking man, he was not unkind, he was a good husband as husbands went, and a good father.

His idea of raising a family was to feed them liberally. “Give the children,” he would say, [“]all the good, wholesome food, at regular meal times, that they can assimilate. Give them fruits, milk, butter, cream, meats, all the different luxuries, including plenty of sweets, and they will grow up with wholesome stomachs and no appetite for the excesses that debase a man.” That was the temperance movement of our home, and it was one in which I entered with all my soul.>

At last after these23 troubled meetings in the Temperance Alliance, of24 which I have only \had\ time to allude, Judge J.25 F. Caples26, whom many of you doubtless yet remember, made an arrangement with me in which he was chosen President, and I Vice-president, for several years, of what we called “The Open Temperance meeting.”27 It was not a prohibition movement. It was a temperance movement.28 <Judge Caples had a book, which is, doubtless, somewhere in existence today; I don’t know where, but his family doubtless know, in which he stated, when we were about to adjourn, sine die, that we had secured four thousand temperance signatures. That was long ago, when Portland was young; and> finally, <after the work had gone on, and had brought a great many favorable mentions from all parts of the land,> \Judge\ Caples came to me one day <and said, and> his face <was as> black29 as a thunder cloud, “Mrs. Duniway, there has a new movement come up30 in this country; they call it Prohibition. It is a fad, <and> it is not going to hurt the liquor traffic. It is not going to hurt anything but temperance <and honest citizenship>; and I am in favor of quitting this open temperance movement while our credit is good, because fanaticism will not hesitate to lie. Men31 <and women> may grow lachrymose over the existence of the saloon32; but33 it will all be like the mountain that was in labor to produce a mouse.” <After a little thought, and talking it over with my husband34,> we concluded to disband the open temperance meeting and follow the advice of \the\ <experienced business> men who said, “Let this prohibition movement, run its course, like measles or any other contagious epidemic that the people want to shun and can’t;” and so our temperance campaign was sidetracked for the prohibition movement, and the reform of the drunkard was lost sight of under the new dispensation. Men and women began to work from the wrong end of the reform. They tried to lay the blame of drunkenness, not upon the man, not upon the one who indulged in it, but upon the liquor <that was in itself an intransitive agent, and could not disturb anybody that would let it alone.

Then came up the lachrymose, emotional idea that Caples foresaw. “Here are the drunkard’s wife and the drunkard’s family; God knows they need our sympathy,” said the theorist who had found a new way to raise money. The claim I had found for the cure of all this was not an iron-clad rule that would disturb peace, honesty and fidelity, and create law-breaking, duplicity and lies in every direction, but a movement to declare married women, as much as single women, no longer to be servants without wages in the home. I claimed that the marriage relation was a business, or ought to be; that the raising of a family was a business, or ought to be, and the woman who was depleted in pocket, merely living in poverty and deprivation of every kind, was not enabled to demand of her husband as strict a line of moral rectitude as he, no matter how fallen he was, would demand of her. But my movement was not considered popular. Men, many of them with rum blossomed [?] noses, were finding occupation in pulpits, from which I was closed; and they demanded an iron-clad law of force, instead of the ingrowing and outspreading doctrine of freedom that would spread among all the people. But the work for the enfranchisement of women went on, and almost involuntarily, the majority of men began at last to look upon it with favor; and on the 5th day of November, 1912, they voted “yes” for us by a handsome majority.>

<Then again35,> as in Washington Territory \after the enfranchisement of women\, came this <other> prohibition movement settling36 itself upon Oregon as a storm center; and men who had discovered their volubility to be equal to the Falls of Niagara grew intoxicated with one idea, <and that idea was that they must close up the liquor traffic and leave the rest of the world to take care of itself. I used to say sometimes, when talking on this question many years ago, that if you were afflicted, or your child or friend, with an abscess in the side,- and I compared drunkenness to the abscess,- and you would call a physician and he would prescribe a prohibition plaster big enough to cover all the outer edges even of that forming and formed abscess, and he, after prescribing and applying that plaster, pronounced the patient cured, a ten year old child who had had the teaching of the common school could tell you that that prohibition plaster would only cause the evils that formed the abscess to burrow deeper and deeper and deeper into hidden places in the body of the afflicted person, and rot that patient to its death. Of course I could not then meet the kindly opposition that, thank God, today is growing up among the people. I no longer hear the cry that I am sold to whiskey. Even the most infamous liar that ever promulgated that sort of a story has gotten ashamed of it and if they repeat it at all, they say it secretly, or think they do, and it passes unnoticed.

But today we have such a stirring up of the forces of agitation all over this country that you cannot pick up a daily paper without reading of the arrest and incarceration and trial of men who have been caught bootlegging, blindpigging37, all that sort of thing, to hide away that abscess of drunkenness that exists in the side of the nation; but is not curing it and is not reaching the source of the evil.

Now, friends, what are we today?> I am old and stricken in years; my next birthday will make me eighty years of age. I have raised a large family of sober sons, who have passed the drugstore and the groggery38 every day of their lives on their way to school, \and\ to office and to39 the larger work of businessmen, that has brought them out into the country, in educational institutions, in commercial activities, in legal action and in literature. <These men have not needed prohibition, because I have said to them, “Boys, if you go wrong, your mother will be blamed, and I would accept the blame and say `I am sorry that I could not do a better work than to raise drunkards, but if that has been my job I will take the blame and say, I have failed in my duty.’” Why, that was always admonition enough and will be for any boy who has been taught to respect the mother who bore him ar her peril, who toiled for him in sickness and in health, and who would go gladly if need be to the very gates of death to rescue him from the evil consequences of evildoing. Now, dear friends, I know that this is not a popularly accepted theme today, the newspapers do not discuss it as I think they ought and as I know they must before it shall be properly settled. When God undertakes to raise a mast for a mighty ship that is to bear upon its bosom the heaving waters of a great ocean, and meet and buffet the mighty winds of the heavens, he does not plant that mast to grow inside a glass case, but on a weather beach where the winds of heaven can blow upon it, where the winds not only are to be resisted, but the hail, snow, rain, and the cold and heat. The dews of heaven are left to nourish it, and when at last it grows tall and strong and grand, it is ready for the woodman’s ax to place it as a mast, to carry the sails of ocean steamers to distant ports, and to all the isles of the sea.>

“Oh” somebody says,40 “doesn’t God prohibit everything that is evil? Aren’t the Ten Commandments full of prohibition?” Yes, the Ten Commandments say, “Thou shalt not steal,” but the Ten commandments do not hide away in the bowels of the earth everything that man can steal. On the contrary, the Ten Commandments place in your way and mine temptation41 and say to us, “Resist <it> or take the consequences.” Then they say42, “Thou shalt not kill.” <Yes,> but you shall not take everybody and shut them in the penitentiary to prevent it because now and then one person wants to be or has to be killed43. What you want to do is to place all the safeguards of protection you can around every individual, however high or low, rich or poor, teaching them44 that he that conquereth himself is greater than he that taketh a city45. We can never have temperance in its truest sense until we have raised men and women who are willing to abide by the rule of self-protection. \If we are to cure the evil of intemperance, let us be rational, let us be reasonable.\

<One day a few years ago I was going over to the City of Washington in obedience to a message from the Governor, Gov. Benson46, who empowered me to act as his representative in the National Conference of United States Governors. It was a notable meeting in the city of Washington, but on the way I met with a delay. There came a terrible snowstorm, one of those blinding, blanket affairs such as they are now enduring over the East and middle West, from which we are happily free, and our train was stalled near some little station and remained so for several hours. The night was coming down. I asked the porter to make up my berth early, so that I could put on the electric light near me, that I might read in my berth. He left the upper berth down over the lower end of the bedding and was in the act of preparing to make up my berth when a little woman,- she was a pretty little body; she had gray fluffy hair and a very pretty powdered complexion and was dressed in an evening garb, evidently she had gone from the lecture room to the train, came to me and said, “Excuse me, but are you going far”? “Yes,” I said, “to the farther East.” She said, “Then would you kindly ask the porter to make up my berth first, as I will have to get up early in the morning?” I said, “certainly,” and I called the porter and I made way for the lady and her baggage in my berth and she sat by me. Pretty soon a waiter came from the dining car bearing a tray with two foaming steins of beer. He was going through to the apartment where the men were, and this started her off like a deluge and she said, “It won’t be two years until we have that abomination driven from our land, don’t you think so?” “Well,” I said, although I didn’t want to get into an argument, “well, that depends upon whether men are willing to buy it and use it. The demand is the thing for us to consider.” “Ain’t you a prohibitionist?” “Well,” I said, “I can’t see but one power that can prohibit human nature and that is God, and He doesn’t act; and I don’t see how we are going to bring it about unless the individual is willing to prohibit himself.” “Do you mean to say that God is the author of alcohol?” she asked, and she looked at me with a venom that reminded me of old times when they accused me of being sold to whiskey. “Why, yes,” I said, “our scriptures teach us that nothing was made except God made it.” “I don’t want anything to do with your sort of a God!” she said, and she clutched my arm like it was in a vice and then got up and switched herself away to the end of the car until her berth was made up. Then without thanking me for my courtesy, removed her baggage from my berth with a jerk, and flounced into her own. The next morning when I awoke she was gone; and a couple of ladies across the aisle had known her and I asked them who she was, and they said, “Oh, she is one of those prohibition advocates that gives advice to God in the churches.” After a few more sentences the waiter came in from the dining car and said, “Last call for breakfast in the dining car,” so I did not see those ladies again. That dear little reformer who was so contaminated by the idea that I said God was the author of alcohol has never crossed my orbit again; but I doubt not she will be here in the next six or eight months to tell the people just exactly what God has compelled them to do. I simply don’t believe in such methods; and yet I am glad to say that the world is getting better all the time.

Years ago we had no institutions to bring up neglected children. Only recently we have put it in the hearts of the Parents and Teachers Association to bring lunches at noon for hungry school children. We have not had until recently an opportunity for women to vote their silent sentiments upon any of the great questions of the day. Regardless of the attacks that are made upon the old wheel horse and leader for liberty who secured for women the right to vote, liberty is gaining ground, and the world is getting better.

There is one movement I must speak of before I close that I do glory in above all others, and that one is in keeping with what I have told the people for the last forty years. The freedom of woman is to be the cure for the evils they suffer from intemperance. I did not expect that in less than two years thereafter women could vote, a woman would arise like that Mrs. Valentine, of Union, of whom you have been reading for a few days, to cause the Governor47 to send a woman to her rescue. That woman complained that her husband is a drunkard, that the men who sold the liquor did not heed her cry to protect him from himself, and the result has been that Miss Hobbs is getting into moving pictures and is going around the world pretty soon in the movies as an evangel of the good time coming when women will be able to protect themselves from drunken husbands.48 That is my cure for the evils of intemperance. And whatever you may say in praise or blame of our present Governor, I do exult in the fact that he has the courage of his convictions and that when he thinks it is necessary to barnstorm an evil, he will send a woman to the rescue, and that woman is receiving all the encouragement that is needed from the responsible men who are engaged in the liquor business, as well as other men and women. Yes, the world is growing better. It is not going to be many years until we have a rational temperance reform instead of the lachrymose, emotional raid that is now going on all over this country engendering law breaking, infidelity and duplicity, but not touching whiskey, which, if driven into hiding, will flourish as long as men demand it.49 >

When a man becomes afflicted with the smallpox we send him to the pest house and put him in quarantine, but we don’t put all the rest of us50 in quarantine \with him\. We stay on the outside and do all \that\ we can to cure, or at least to51 relieve, the suffering of the man who is afflicted. Just so, with the drunkard who hasn’t <sufficient> stamina to control himself. Let us take charge of him <and cure his disease>, but let us not compel everybody else to go to the pest house because he must. Let us not compel every man in all the land52 to carry crutches because now and then one walks lame. That is not philosophy, that is not common sense; and <if in these utterances I have said one word that has hurt the feelings of anybody who thinks I am in the wrong, I can only say I am sorry, but> I speak the convictions that <have> come to me through long experience. <I have studied the work of the waves, of the sea, and the winds of the mountains and the plains. I have probed the secrets of nature from the day that the growing grain floats like glistening billows in the warm sunshine to the time when it is garnered and put into the homes of the people. I have studied the philanthropies that are stirring the hearts of the sons of women, who are breaking into new parties if the old ones don’t go to suit them, and this brings me to mention this Progressive Party, of which although I am not a member because I have not yet left my alma mater, the Republican Association which was modeled in the life and death of the martyred Lincoln and his great co-worker; yet, when I look back to the year 1884, I see Theodore Roosevelt53 in the State Legislature of the great State of New York.

I had gone as a delegate from the Territory of Washington where we had enfranchised women, and I had been attending the National Equal Suffrage Convention in Washington, when I was placed in charge of a delegation to go to Albany from the National Association. Theodore Roosevelt was a boy at that time; that is, he was the youngest member of the lower House and no one young as he was in the upper House. He was placed in charge of our delegation, and to his credit be it spoken he rose to the occasion and championed us royally and loyally. Then, when he became Governor of New York, he gave an inaugural address demanding our enfranchisement, and while it is true that during part of the time that when Lyman Abbott54 gave him a dollar a word for his articles, he was obliged to side-track us a little bit, he proved true to his convictions when he had another opportunity, and today he is one of the evangels of equal suffrage, and I honor him for it. I feel like–and you will pardon me for saying it here in the stronghold of his friends, where I am speaking with your courtesy,–I feel like saying that I would be thankful for the Progressive Party if for nothing else than because of the stand it has taken so bravely for the enfranchisement of women. Other parties will claim like acquiescence on the same principle, and I can say that this great movement for liberty for all the people is in direct opposition to the prohibition of self-government. Liberty is the divine principle up and out of which must come all the great movements for the amelioration of human destiny that is to make us all better, freer, purer, truer, more successful men and women than we were before.

Before I take my seat let me ask you one favor, dear friends, a favor that extends to every one of you. I want you from this on, until the primaries close, to relax not one jot or tittle of your determination to get every man and woman you can to register. It is the first duty that we owe to the people of this great enfranchised state.> California has just spoken, through her vote of registered women, and has decided that it is not wise to55 destroy the grape industry by voting prohibition, <and they have voted it down>. Oregon’s duty is to decide that it is not wise to destroy the hop industry, which enables thousands of women to get money to pay taxes and educate their children. <It is not wise to cripple the transportation interests or the interests of those who are in all the different ramifications of business by upsetting conditions and making destruction of such conditions until the people do not know, or cannot plan for their future efforts for fear of getting into some sort of an ambush that will upset their best laid plans.> Let us be sensible, let us be temperate, let us be logical, let us be free and remember that our first duty is to see that everybody registers to be able to do their part in the great climaxes56 that are57 before us.

<Robert Ingersoll58 said he was grateful to the Greenback Party for making the Greenback Party unnecessary. I am grateful to all these great upheavals for making common sense necessary. It will come, it must come.> \Common sense will prevail.\ Education, opportunity, knowledge, liberty,- above all things liberty-is what is to enable us to raise families of self- supporting, self-sustaining, self-protecting men and women. <I thank you.>


    1. Schwantes 350. []
    2. Moynihan, Rebel 255 [n. 23]. []
    3. Schwantes calls the third party movement a “misadventure” and “an ill-conceived protest vehicle that had no future” (350). []
    4. Dodds 173. []
    5. Abigail’s focus shifted at this stage partly because the vote in Oregon was won. No doubt she continued to worry about a “boomerang” in the remaining nonsuffrage states. Nonetheless, aged and crippled, she had not the wherewithal to contribute elsewhere (her final N.A.W.S.A. convention had been Seattle in 1909). In fact, after the “arduous campaign” of 1912, Oregon suffragists generally “folded their hands for a quiet rest until the cry for help came from other States”; an active alliance was not reconstituted until March, 1915. Scott Duniway also opposed the directions in which younger leaders were taking the movement. Even as a member of its Advisory Council (Lunardini 52-53), Scott Duniway objected to the militant tactics that English suffragettes had pioneered and that Alice Paul’s newly-formed Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage was urging upon N.A.W.S.A. (Surely, Abigail must have been horrified by the report, shortly after this luncheon address, that Mary Richardson had taken a meat axe to Velasquez’s painting of Venus in the National Gallery in London, in protest of Emmeline Goulden Pankhurst’s arrest!) She also opposed the Union’s pursuit of the “federal route” to suffrage, commenting: “It has appeared better to me to take state by state, and go a little slow. Young people are aggressive and enthusiastic but then they have not had to wait for 42 years for the vote as I have” (History of Woman Suffrage 5: 245-46, 6: 548-49; “Oregon State Equal Suffrage Association (1909)“; Weatherford 186, 196-98; Oregon Daily Journal 6 Mar. 1914, 10 Mar. 1914). []
    6. Oregon Sunday Journal 15 Mar. 1914. []
    7. Oregon State Equal Suffrage Association (1906)“; Oregon Daily Journal 16 Mar. 1914. Trenholm Hidden was influential in Progressive circles, having been the party’s candidate for Portland councilman-at-large and city commissioner the year before. []
    8. In legend, Nestor was a wise old counselor who fought with the Greeks at Troy. []
    9. The pamphlet is available in Mss 432 Abigail Jane (Scott) Duniway, Misc. Papers, OR Hist. Soc. []
    10. This speech, which the Oregon Daily Journal reported later the same day, sparked a lively debate in its editorial columns. See letter from M. A. Cooper, March 6, 1914; Scott Duniway’s reply, March 10; letter from Mrs. B. R. Carter, March 11; letter from Scott Duniway, March 13; letter from Mrs. H. E. Adams, March 14; letter from Dr. May Harris, March 15; and Scott Duniway’s reply to Carter and Adams, March 18. The Brewers’ Association pamphlet also reprints the last of these. The Morning Oregonian covered the speech on February 26. []
    11. Dr. Cora C. Talbott chaired the meeting; Mrs. Lora C. Little was chair at the luncheon (Morning Oregonian 26 Feb. 1914). []
    12. John Tucker Scott (1809-1880): born Washington County, Kentucky, eighteen miles and six days from Abraham Lincoln’s birthplace and date; second of seven living children, including five girls, of Frances Tucker and James Scott, who married in 1806; family moved to Illinois, 1824, settling in Tazewell County, where he was postmaster and sawmill manager; married Ann Roelofson; lost farm, 1840, and went bankrupt, 1842; joined Sons of Temperance, 1842; with assistance of Edward Dickinson Baker, purchased first circular sawmill west of Ohio, 1846; major contributor, Groveland Cumberland Presbyterian Church; elected county road commissioner; removed to Oregon, 1852, becoming innkeeper of Oregon Temperance House, Lafayette; married Ruth Eckler Stevenson, 1853, whom he divorced for bearing another man’s child and then reconciled, settling with her at Scott’s Prairie, near Shelton, on Puget Sound, Washington Territory, 1854; returned to Clackamas County, Oregon, near the Duniways, 1857; moved to Forest Grove, 1865; successful farmer, sawmill operator; benefactor, Pacific University (Moynihan, Rebel 1-50, passim; Scott, History of the Oregon Country 1: 132, 5: 217-19). []
    13. Ann Roelofson Scott (1811-1852): born near Henderson, Kentucky; eighth of twelve children, including nine girls, of Mary Smith and Lawrence Roelofson; family came to central Illinois, c. 1821; met John Tucker Scott while assisting sister Esther Roelofson Johnson (wife of Rev. Neill Johnson, minister and missionary of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church) with childbirth on neighboring farm; difficult childbirths left her semi-invalid; did not want to go to Oregon but, following loss of twelfth child at birth, Tucker Scott believed that improved climate might cure her; died of “plains cholera” on Platte River, thirty miles west of Fort Laramie, during overland trip; “For the gentler sort of womankind–and to this type by all accounts Ann Roelofson belonged–life in the wilderness was a long agony of self-sacrifice” (Moynihan, Rebel 1-36, passim; Scott, History of the Oregon Country 1: 10). []
    14. Pamphlet: “of” []
    15. Pamphlet: “the” []
    16. Pamphlet: “attend the Temperance Alliance” []
    17. Pamphlet: “broke” []
    18. I cannot possibly do justice to these raucous gatherings here. In 1872, at the meeting at which the Alliance officially was constituted, Abigail “effervesced with the wrath of the righteous” when her nomination to the executive committee from Multnomah County was not recognized, until she was elected a member at large. She read a set of resolutions that could not be heard “in the great merriment.” A license proposal requiring liquor sellers to obtain the signatures of a majority of “citizens” over the age of 21 residing in the affected precinct or ward was presented. She spoke against an amendment to this proposal, to substitute “legal voters” for “citizens.” The ensuing debate merged into the woman suffrage question. Mr. I. D. Driver (who had just been elected chaplain), voicing his opposition, declared that “if the instincts of women were right there would be no drunkards,” and argued that bad women would dominate the polls. Abigail responded: “Do you mean to say, sir, that we, as mothers and wives, are responsible for every whisky bloat? . . . I pronounce your libel upon womanhood a slander so vile that if we were but voters you would not dare to utter it.” Order was restored by “a liberal use of the gavel.” Later, she introduced a resolution endorsing woman’s right–based on the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments–to vote on temperance matters, at which point an opponent moved for immediate adjournment. Motion having failed, the opponent contended that woman suffrage should be judged on its own merits, without the “embarrassment” to the temperance cause of “entangling alliances.” Abigail retorted: “You have been experimenting for forty years. We tell you that with woman’s assistance the victory is won. Why not try this experiment?” The resolution was passed amid much confusion and charges of “gag rule”; then it was moved and passed to reconsider the vote in order to let opponents have their say. Motions to indefinitely postpone and table the resolution failed, at which J. W. Wooden, member of the executive committee from Yamhill, threatened to quit the Alliance, declaring: “I think that this woman suffrage question is a damnable outrage. One woman has come into this Convention and kicked up more fuss than all the other delegates, and I don’t go a cent on letting her talk so much.” After Abigail moved to strike the references to the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, the resolution passed (ayes, 119; nays, 12), prompting “cheers lasting several minutes.” She was appointed a committee of one to present the resolution to the Legislature. Wooden then obtained passage of a resolution that the previous resolution’s endorsement of woman suffrage was confined to “the temperance question” only. Carried (New Northwest 1 Mar. 1872).

      Anti-suffragists would seek revenge the next year. At the outset, the Committee on Credentials recommended that Scott Duniway not be admitted on the grounds that the O.S.W.S.A. was a “political party.” When Abigail objected and moved to amend, a Kafkaesque parliamentary wrangle ensued: At issue was her right to object to the report, since only members were allowed to speak and the report had determined that she was not a member! When J. Quinn Thornton, a lawyer from Albany, read the Constitutional provision pertaining to “political parties,” Abigail retorted that, since the ballot was the distinctive feature of American politics, an organization whose members could not vote could not be political. Thornton replied, amidst laughter: “Although the woman announces her position with all the gravity of a setting hen, her sentiments amount to nothing unless it is to prove her sincerity.” More parliamentary maneuvering followed, in which it was ruled that the matter before the house was not Abigail’s amendment but the adoption of the report itself, and that only the previous year’s members were eligible to vote. A motion to adjourn was ruled out of order, and “a scene of indescribable confusion” ensued. The roll for 1872 was called, and 297 people failed to respond; Abigail’s amendment failed, 17 to 22. But the tide was turning. She was nominated for the presidency of the Alliance, but declined. A motion to admit Virginia Olds elicited “some allusions offensive to numerous ladies” from Judge Thornton; when Abigail rose to their defense, he demanded that the Sergeant-at-Arms “take that crazy woman out of the house”: “The Sergeant at Arms advanced to his task with evident pleasure written on his countenance, amid loud imprecations from one or two venerable gentlemen. Mrs. Duniway held her position [with the help of sharp pencils, by her account!], the peace officer standing at a respectful distance. When the lady concluded, she took her seat amid loud cheers.” The convention took up a resolution admitting Abigail as a delegate at large, commencing “a turmoil that defies the graphic powers of mortal man.” But, in the end, the resolution passed, 97 to 72. Others were similarly admitted, whereupon Wooden, representing “the Committee of Seventy on Alliance Reform,” announced “with inimitable grace and a profusion of adjectives” their intention to secede and form a State Temperance Union (New Northwest 28 Feb. 1873; Abigail also relates a version of these events in “The Woman Suffrage Movement and Two Kinds of Prohibition“).

      By comparison, the fourth meeting of the Alliance, in 1875, was “remarkable throughout for the earnest and harmonious labors of its members.” Its committee on political action proposed a series of resolutions, one of which would have coordinated efforts with the rival State Temperance Union. The resolutions were opposed by Abigail and others, but passed “by a large majority.” Two other items of business are noteworthy. Scott Duniway proposed a resolution, which was adopted unanimously, declaring that the licensing of intoxicants is “but the granting of indulgences by the Government to commit sin, and we, as a Temperance Alliance, protest against it in any form.” Abigail would change her mind by 1886, coming to view licensure as a discouraging tax (“Equal Rights for All” n. 112). The Alliance also endorsed the Temperance Star, which she recently had disparaged as the “Temperance Turkey Buzzard,” as its official organ (About Scott Duniway; on the 1875 proceedings, see New Northwest 26 Feb. 1875).

      At this point in this address, Abigail crossed out a subsequent sentence: “This is a matter of history which many of you younger people probably have not heard about.” []

    19. Given her abominable handwriting here, the original, legible typescript better conveys the sense of this passage: “. . . after the church began to learn that it might use woman suffrage as a shortcut to prohibition, it began to stand in a way for the enfranchisement of women, thus eliminating one class of prohibition, and in its idea I began to see another element come up to oppose us, and that was called the liquor traffic.” []
    20. Clara Belle Duniway Stearns (1854-1886): oldest child, and only daughter, of Ben and Abigail; in face of family disapproval, eloped with Don H. Stearns, publisher of short-lived, muckraking Portland Evening Bee and land speculator, December, 1876; “taken ill by something mysterious” in “swampy desolation” of Lake Camus on the Washougal during recession, 1884, which Stearns treated with hot lemonade for several months; returned to Duniway home in Portland, suffering from consumption, summer, 1885; died January, 1886; loss of “the precious earth-life that has throbbed in unison with ours since the days of our earliest womanhood” profoundly stirred Scott Duniway’s grief and sense of mission: at the end, Abigail told Clara, “I wish I could go with you darling,” to which her daughter’s last words were, “You must finish your work, Ma!”; Scott Duniway, with long-standing spiritualist convictions, reported contact with Clara “through private psychic sources, within a month; and I have never since been able to think of her as dead” (Moynihan, Rebel 124-26, 133; A. Duniway, Path Breaking 279). []
    21. This is an abridged version of the W.C.T.U.’s campaign for local option during the Territorial Legislature of January, 1886, and Clara’s death from consumption, which Abigail had recounted in vivid detail in “Ballots and Bullets” in 1889. []
    22. The pamphlet combines these three sentences: “There sprang up by this time a band of agitators, men and women who undertook to make money by a new movement, some of them being honest, many of them demagogues.” []
    23. Pamphlet: “the” []
    24. Pamphlet: “to” []
    25. Pamphlet, in error: “B.” []
    26. John Fletcher Caples (1832-1908): born Ohio; admitted to bar, 1853; came to Vancouver, Washington, 1865, and Portland, 1866; ardent Republican; elected to state legislature, 1872, chaired judiciary committee, helping elect John Mitchell to U.S. Senate; U.S. District Attorney, 1878-84; U.S. consul to Valparaiso, Chile, 1897-1901; presidential elector, 1892 and 1896; married Sarah J. Morrison, 1854; six children (Hines 987-88; Portrait and Biographical Record of Portland 291-92; Scrapbook #53: 32, OR Hist. Soc.; History of the Bench 262; Portrait and Biographical Record of the Willamette 291-92). []
    27. Pamphlet: “by which we organized what we called the Open Temperance Meeting, of which Judge Caples was chosen president, and I, vice-president.” []
    28. Pamphlet, following the original typescript, substitutes “meeting” for “movement” in both sentences. []
    29. Pamphlet: “dark” []
    30. Pamphlet: “a new movement has arisen” []
    31. Pamphlet: “Man” []
    32. Pamphlet: “the bar of drunkenness” []
    33. Pamphlet: “and” []
    34. Pamphlet: “Finally” []
    35. Pamphlet: “Here” []
    36. Pamphlet: “centering” []
    37. A “blind pig” was a speakeasy. []
    38. Pamphlet: “saloon” []
    39. Pamphlet: “in” []
    40. Pamphlet: “Some people say:” []
    41. Pamphlet: “place temptation in your way and in mine” []
    42. Pamphlet: “The Ten Commandments include,” []
    43. Pamphlet: “some person is killed.” []
    44. Pamphlet: “him” []
    45. Pamphlet: “he who conquereth himself, taketh a city.” []
    46. Frank Williamson Benson (1858-1911): born San Jose, California; University of the Pacific, B.A. 1877, M.A. 1882; came to Douglas County, 1880, to teach at Umqua Academy; married Harriet Rush Benjamin, 1883; two sons; country school superintendent, 1882-86; president, Drain normal school, 1886-88; Douglas County clerk, 1882-86; admitted to bar, 1898, practicing until 1907; Secretary of State, 1907-11; temporary governor, 1909-10, succeeding George Earle Chamberlain, who resigned when elected to U.S. Senate; resigned governorship due to failing health and went to California, but remained Secretary of State until death; Republican (Scrapbooks #36: 68, #264: 41, OR Hist. Soc.; cf. Who was Who 85; Corning 26-27). []
    47. Oswald West (1873-1960): born Guelph, Ontario, Canada; came to Oregon at age 4; to Salem, 1877; drove cattle and worked for father’s butcher shop; worked in banks beginning 1889; married Mabel Hutton, 1897; Alaska gold rush, 1899; state land agent, 1903-07; state railroad commissioner, 1907-10; admitted to bar, 1910; Governor, 1911-15; Democrat; perhaps most colorful governor in Oregon history; noted for prison reform (instituting honor system), saving beaches for public by making tidelands part of highway system, minimum wage, workmen’s compensation, and women’s pension laws, child welfare commission, fish and game commission; supported suffrage; also supported prohibition; exposed graft in school lands scandals; vetoed 72 of 233 bills (Corning 261; Who’s Who in Oregon 231; “Biography–West, Oswald,” Vertical File, OR Hist. Soc.). []
    48. In a “local option” election in November, 1910, Union County voted “wet” but the precinct within which the town of Cove was located voted “dry.” Despite charges that it was selling liquor to minors and was operating illegally, the one saloon in town, operated by Ernest Thorson, remained open, with a city license and the support of city officials. In February, 1914, Mrs. Amy Valentine of Cove wrote Governor West to complain that her husband drank to excess, that Thorson ignored her directive not to sell him liquor, and that District Attorney Ivanhoe was not helpful, advising that she would need to file a costly civil suit. Ivanhoe, while conceding that “moral conditions in Cove are bad” and claiming that he would close the saloon if he could, argued that the precinct legally remained wet because County Judge Henry had failed to issue an order declaring the precinct dry within fifteen days of the election. Judge Henry claimed that he did not know that such an order was required and believed that the county-wide vote superseded the precinct’s vote.

      West, however, who was something of a crusader, already had made national headlines cleaning up the liquor traffic in Copperfield, sending Fern Hobbs, a young attorney (a 1912 graduate of Willamette Law School) and his personal secretary, into town with national guardsmen to close the saloons under conditions approaching martial law. This time, he sent Hobbs to investigate without troops but with a film crew to record events for posterity. The city council objected that Mrs. Valentine never had complained to them, claimed that minors may have obtained liquor through third parties but the saloon never sold it “direct,” and criticized the “fuss stirred up . . . because it will hurt our town.” After Hobbs’ investigation, West wrote Judge Henry, demanding that the county court issue an order of prohibition for the precinct in accordance with section 4929, Lord’s Oregon Laws, and the Supreme Court’s ruling in Baxter (49 Oregon, 353) that this section requires “the vote in each precinct even on a vote cast for the county as a whole” to “stand as an independent vote for that precinct for prohibition therein, as well as a part of the county vote on prohibition in the county as a whole.”

      The Morning Oregonian covered this story extensively, first on February 20 and then as front page news on February 23-25. The Copperfield saloon owners subsequently sued for $30,000 damages, but the governor ultimately prevailed in the state Supreme Court (“Biography–West, Oswald,” Vertical File, OR Hist. Soc.). []

    49. Newspaper coverage the next day, following a slightly shorter version of this sentence (ending at “whisky”), quotes her as adding, “Just the other day the Christian Advocate gave a long account of the marvelous increase in the use of intoxicants” (Oregonian 26 Feb. 1914). []
    50. Pamphlet: “the population” []
    51. Pamphlet: “to at least” []
    52. Pamphlet: “all the men in the land” []
    53. (1858-1919): Twenty-sixth, and youngest, President; born New York City; graduated Harvard, 1880; New York legislature, 1882-84; ranched in North Dakota, 1884-66; organized First U.S. Cavalry (Rough Riders), which distinguished itself in Cuba during Spanish-American War; Governor, New York, 1889-90; elected Vice-President as Republican, 1900, succeeding to Presidency upon William McKinley’s death, 1901; elected President, 1905-09; Progressive Party candidate for President, 1912; renominated 1916 but declined; championed civil service reform, trust-busting, conservation, and “the strenuous life” (Who was Who 1055). []
    54. (1835-1922): “disciple of [Henry Ward] Beecher and a religious journalist of great abilities”; born Roxbury, Massachusetts; graduated New York University, 1853; married Abby Frances Hamlin, 1857; ordained, 1860; pastor, Terra Haute, Indiana, 1860-65, and New York, 1865-69; joint editor with Beecher of The Christian Union, 1876-81; editor, 1881-1923 (Union changed name to The Outlook in 1893); succeeded to Plymouth pulpit upon Beecher’s death in 1887; helped shape Outlook less as miscellany and more as journal of opinion; generally Republican in outlook but avoided party politics; he opposed woman suffrage but allowed others to make the case; mutual admiration with Theodore Roosevelt (Mott 3: 426-33; Who was Who 3). []
    55. Pamphlet: “California will not” []
    56. Pamphlet: “climax” []
    57. Pamphlet: “is” []
    58. Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899): politician and orator known as “the great agnostic,” advocating higher criticism of Bible, humanism, and scientific rationalism; Illinois Attorney General, 1867-69; staunch Republican. []

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