The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941 Page: 155
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and industry is confined to the few true cities in the 'entire
The great factors that have influenced the history of this
section are Protestanism, freedom, and cheap land. White re-
peatedly stresses the effects of little white Protestant churches
and the little red school houses, the great boon of freedom, and
the steady increase in the value of land. Increase in land
values provided the capital and laid the basis for the credit
upon which the middle class enjoyed a high standard of living
for almost 150 years following the adoption of the Constitution,
and also helped each generation to establish its numerous de-
scendants on cheap lands in the ever-shifting West. White pic-
tures the people living in comfort and freedom, more nearly
on a democratic equality than ever known over such an area
and period of time. Democracy, which he identifies as Christian
Civilization, or the working out of the altruistic feelings of the
people as a whole, prevailed throughout this area since the
adoption of the Constitution. He does not ignore the rascality,
as shown in the rapacious greediness of the lumber, mining,
and other interests, but he feels that the marvelous increase
of wealth went largely to the great rank and file of the people.
Western leadership, Bryan of "Populist" days, La Follette and
the "Insurgency" of Teddy Roosevelt's time, and culminating
in that of the "Sons of the Wild Jackasses" of Coolidge and
Hoover days, blocked the growth of plutocracy and proletarian-
ism by enacting laws that tended to pull the one down and
encourage the other to rise into the middle class. Regulation
of transportation and manufacturing, the income tax amend-
ment, and direct election of United States Senators, which
broke the rule of the Wall Street political boss, were inspired
by Western sentiment.
High prices of farm products during the first World War,
rising prices of farm lands, mortgages and high interest rates,
and living standards somewhat comparable to those of dwellers
in the county seat towns of the West are the main factors that
have made the farm problems of today. White feels that the
solution lies largely in that of the irregularly employed un-
skilled and semi-skilled dwellers of the cities. Greater con-
sumption must be provided for greater quantities of goods if
the farmers are to be saved from degradation into a tenant
class. J. L. WALLER.
College of Mines.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941, periodical, 1941; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146052/m1/163/: accessed September 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.