Public Papers and Letters of Oliver Max Gardner: Governor of North Carolina, 1929-1933

By Edwin Gill; David Leroy Corbitt | Go to book overview

more under McKinley than a 1,200 pound steer under Grover Cleveland. This took place in the hall of the House of Representatives while I was a student at State College, and I vividly recall how unsparing Pritchard was in his condemnation of Cleveland. He claimed that the Republican party was the party of prosperity and that the Democratic party had always brought economic disaster. He charged the Democrats with the panic of 1893.

Now, I submit if it was fair to contrast the price of farm products under McKinley and Cleveland, that it is nothing but proper to tell the farmers of North Carolina and Pitt County the difference between agricultural prices under Herbert Hoover and under Woodrow Wilson. There is a poetic justice in this picture. Let us take Pitt County as an illustration.

Pitt is our greatest agricultural county. In 1919, under Woodrow Wilson, the crop value of Pitt County, reported by the United States census, was $21,000,000. In 1931, the crop value of Pitt County, under Herbert Hoover, had fallen to the bankrupting value of slightly more than $4,000,000. Here is a loss of $17,000,000-- a sum sufficient to pay the present annual property tax bill of Pitt County for over forty years.

Let us look at North Carolina. In 1929, in the first year of Mr. Hoover's administration, the crops of North Carolina sold for $293,000,000. In 1931 the value of all the crops in North Carolina had dropped to only $144,000,000. Thus we see that during the administration of Herbert Hoover the farmers of North Carolina have lost approximately $150,000,000, in the annual value of their crops--enough to pay the entire bonded debt of the state of North Carolina.

Today the Republican party and the philosophy of Senator Pritchard stands discredited. No one today believes that the Republican party has a monopoly on

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