Cedar Keys, Florida.'January 31st 1907,
I have your letter of ,hq.28th :jin which you'request infor-
-mation as to any literary record f tigh earIy prosecutions under
the statutes relating to peonage. : :
SIn reply I be to adfise'you.that earld in 1901 and after
business had beenn very good in the south I noticed that the scarcity
of.labor was causing certain employers to use coercive measures.
From time to time the press contained notices of this fact
S anAd this with several similar cases that came under my observation
was the reason for my investigating the peonage statutes and origin.
Satin the first prosecutions.
In the A-tlanta- Constitution of February 17th 1901 you will
find an account of involuntary servi'.tude in South Carolina.
S In the FlOrida Times Union& Citizen of.May. 30th 1901, you will
,find an account of an earli case handle me. Inl t1he same paper
of March 27th 1902 will be found oiUnt of~th: trial of
Clyatt in the'U.S.Court at Tallahassee,
In the Inaepende't(N. Y. ) of July 9th, you will find an
account of Peonage in the South. I wrote this article in the Inaepenaent'
I have no copy of this as I 1.oed the oil4 copy I had and
it was Aeagef returned to me
S ., .osmopolitan for. August .1995 has an article on peonage
.,. by Herbert D'. Wrd. This article is not at all accurate .in treating
... of certain- facts.
.G' Q.Basi1'ley of Geor ia- a member of Congress has circulated a
S pamphlet', being"'rezaris in the Congressional Record of March .28th 1904
These rearr s" are strongly against th peo nwae prose.culons
and you should not fail to read them. The pimphlet was circulated
at public expense, .under Mr.. Bratleys frani. .
A decision of Jud'e Emory Speer of the U.S.Court, Sothern
i o. eo a re e. c .... h 4oi *l.
,' District of Georgia, rendered March 15th 1904,...is worth wile
,I. ..*. ,* ,
: ~ 'u; ~.
I suggest that you also read the following decisions of
the Supreme Courts of certain of the States:-
State Vs. Thomas (Ala) 40th Southern Reporter P.
,Edwards Vs. State. ( Fla. ) 33rd Southern Rep.
Simmons Vs. S tate- 36 Sou. 728
State'Vs. Murray' 40 Sou. Rep. 930.; (La.)
Toney Vs. State 37th Sou. Rep. 332.
All the aove cases trea of the labor contract laws of the various
The aoove is about all of the written record I &now of.
,.I rould call your attention to the fact that the decision of
the Supre:ae Coart of the United States in the Clyatt case is the only
decision of importance, rendered for many years, in which the
court was unanimous in holding the statute to be co;sttiitional
or in ot&er worts, it ie the fist case in Aany years that the
court did not di7ide on a coosi.iutioal j.,~~ t or the construction
thereof. There was a dissenrtin opinit 'nin the Oase out it was
on another point.,
If I can be of farther service to you, advise me and I will
.ive you all information I niave. I e. ect to oe in Tallahassee
ne,.t weeK, aoout the 6th and if you are there would be pleased to
talK doer the matter fith you.
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