Wednesday, March 20, 2013
MARCH 25, 1894 – COXEY’S ARMY BEGINS MARCH
1894 – COXEY’S ARMY BEGINS MARCH
Jacob Coxey, a businessman from Massillon, Ohio organized a 500-strong “Coxey’s Army” march from Massillon (beginning on March 25, 1894) to Washington, D.C. (ending April 30) to promote federal intervention for job creation. The primary demand of this "petition in boots" was unique -- the direct printing and issuance of $500 million by the Federal Treasury to employ 4 million people. Coxey's Army proposed two bills. The first, a "Good Roads Bill”, would help farmers through $500 million issued by the federal government in legal tender notes, or greenbacks, to construct rural roads. The second, a noninterest-bearing bonds bill, would empower state and local governments to issue noninterest-bearing bonds to be used to borrow legal tender notes from the federal treasury. This money would be used to build urban libraries, schools, utility plants and marketplaces. Millions of jobs would have been created -- debt-free.