Fighting Liberal: The Autobiography of George W. Norris

By Arthur M. Schlesinger; George W. Norris | Go to book overview

2
MY MOTHER

IN MY TEENS I came to understand to some degree my mother's struggle after father's death. Not for years, however, could I appreciate fully the remarkable, stoic gallantry of spirit which sustained her.

My mother was in her early forties at the time I was born, a mature woman, with a serious bearing that had a charming grace; but the weeks and months following my father's death gave her a new gravity--a gravity unnoted by me in my carefree childhood.

Winter in that part of Ohio was severe; snow covered the ground; the skies were leaden; and the trees my mother loved stood bare, gaunt, and grim against the fringes of that farmhouse, where her immediate problem was feeding, clothing, sheltering, and educating her children.

My father's death intensified mother's grief over the loss of John.

He had been such a comfort to my mother. Unlike father, he was buoyant, cheerful, and companionable; and, as is so frequently the case of a son in a large family of girls, my mother seemed to lean upon him and to shower an extra measure of affection upon him. When John attained young manhood my mother came to rely on his judgment implicitly. She was proud of his industry and gloried in his schooling, which included a year of college.

From the opening weeks of the Civil War--from Fort Sumter and Bull Run--my mother lived daily in fear John would enlist in the Union army. She decided to exact from him a promise not to enter the armed service. That gave her a temporary peace of mind; and then when John, no longer able to bear the spectacle

-9-

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Fighting Liberal: The Autobiography of George W. Norris
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Foreword George Norris and the Liberal Tradition v
  • Acknowledgment xvii
  • Introduction xxi
  • Contents xxv
  • Illustrations xxvii
  • 1 - An Ohio Farm 1
  • 2 - My Mother 9
  • 3 - Early Education 20
  • 4 - On to Valparaiso 29
  • 5 - The L.U.N. (lunatics Under Norris) 39
  • 6 - Washington Territory 46
  • 7 - A Law Practice 53
  • 8 - An Ardent Republican 59
  • 9 - Conceptions of Justice 69
  • 10 - Marriage and Home 78
  • 11 - Reluctant Decision 88
  • 12 - Payne-Aldrich Tariff Bill 99
  • 13 - The Unhorsing of Speaker Cannon 107
  • 14 - The Archbald Impeachment 120
  • 15 - The Party Rawhide 129
  • 16 - For the Grand Old Party 142
  • 17 - No Friendly Atmosphere 154
  • 18 - Hetch Hetchy 162
  • 19 - Death Kiss by Filibuster 173
  • 20 - Declaration of War 188
  • 21 - Defeat of the League 202
  • 22 - Senate Seat for Sale 214
  • 23 - Teapot Dome 224
  • 24 - Lonely Pilgrimage 234
  • 25 - A Second Emancipation 245
  • 26 - Tva in Existence 260
  • 27 - Relief for the Farmer 278
  • 28 - Grocer Norris"" 286
  • 31 - The Lame Duck Amendment 328
  • 32 - Unicameral Legislature 344
  • 33 - Limitations Upon Voting 356
  • 34 - America Taking Shape 368
  • 35 - Steps Toward Peace 379
  • 36 - Lend-Lease 390
  • 37 - Inflation 396
  • 38 - By Way of Farewell 401
  • Index 411
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