Publication information

The Days of a Man
Source type: book
Document type: book chapter
Document title: “Chapter Twenty-Two”
Author(s): Jordan, David Starr
Volume number: 1
Publisher: World Book Company
Place of publication: Yonkers-on-Hudson, New York
Year of publication: 1922
Pagination: 545-76 (excerpt below includes only pages 575-76)

Jordan, David Starr. “Chapter Twenty-Two.” The Days of a Man. Vol. 1. Yonkers-on-Hudson: World Book, 1922: pp. 545-76.
excerpt of chapter
McKinley assassination (personal response); David Starr Jordan (public statements); David Starr Jordan.
Named persons
William McKinley.
The block quotation below is credited in a footnote on the bottom of page 575 as follows: “‘Lessons of the Tragedy,’ delivered before the students of Stanford University.”

From title page: The Days of a Man: Being Memories of a Naturalist, Teacher and Minor Prophet of Democracy.

From title page: Volume One, 1851-1899.

Chapter Twenty-Two

     It will be remembered that McKinley fell victim to the inchoate rage of a crazy anarchist, sensational journalism having fed the frenzy of the assassin who sought revenge on society by destroying its accepted head. As I said at the time:

     There is a cowardly discontent which leads a man to blame all failure on his prosperous neighbor or on society at large— [575][576] as if a social system existed apart from the men who compose it. Under Democracy all violence is treason. Whosoever heaves a rock at a scab teamster, whosoever fires a shot at the President of the United States, is an enemy of the Republic, guilty of high treason. The central fact of all Democracy is agreement with the Law. It is our law and we made it. If desirable we can unmake it, but by compact of Democracy, any change must be brought about by the methods of peace and order.

     On September 13, 1901, I stood for a moment at the corner of Market and Third streets in San Francisco, reading the posted bulletins from Washington foreshadowing McKinley’s death. A little old crone of a woman, similarly engaged, remarked: “The President will die.” “Yes,” I answered sympathetically; “he is dying.” At this she turned on me savagely: “You did it! You know you did; you look it!” She then backed off in front of a moving car and would have been instantly crushed had not a young man in naval uniform jerked her away as quick as a flash—after which they both melted into the moving crowd.