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When the President repeated the words, "Nearer my God to thee, nearer to thee; e'en though it be a cross that raiseth me," he said: "It has Been my constant prayer, my life-long prayer."

When, in the last moments, Mrs. McKinley said to him: "I want to go with you,"' he replied, "We are all going, my dear."

While his hand was laid upon the shoulder of Mrs. McKinley, one of her dearest friends entered the room. With unfailing courtesy he turned its palm so that it could be grasped by this friend. It was already turning cold in death, and while no words could escape his lips, the smile of loving recognition came to his face.

He said to one of the nurses who waited upon him: "Have you been to the exposition?" She answered, "No, Mr. President." "Why, where did you come from?" he said with a playful movement of the lips. "From Baltimore," she said. "Oh, were you the nurse that attended Mrs. Gage?" he asked. "Yes," she replied. "Then I am very glad indeed to have you wait upon me." "And I am very glad indeed," she answered, "to wait upon you, Mr. President."

An intimate friend was permitted to look over the little work entitled "Daily Strength for Daily Need," out of which he daily read to Mrs. McKinley. In it she found many passages marked, but one was particularly noted:

"So near is grandeur to-our dust,

So near is God to man
When Duty whispers low, 'I must,'
Then Youth replies T can.'"

In the early part of the President's struggle for life he would say to the nurses and physicians, after his wound had been attended to: "Let us have prayer." Then, kneeling, they would repeat with him the Lord's Prayer.


When President McKinley appointed the late ex-Senator Bruce to the position of register of the treasury, considerable surprise was felt that he should select a colored man to fill so important a position. One day a friend asked him what were his reasons for appointing Bruce.

"I have two," replied the President. "The first is the man's fitness for the position. The second is that Bruce's name will appear on every bank bill that will be issued by the government while he is in office, and every colored man who gets one of the notes can read on it the name of a man of his own race, and see in it the lesson that, with economy, industry, honesty and ambition, this government will recognize him the same as it does men of a lighter color of skin."


Chronological Record of the Life of President William


1843. Jan- 29- William McKinley, son of William and Nancy (Allison) McKinley, is born at Niles, Trumbull county, O., being the seventh of a family of nine children.

1852. The McKinley family removes to Poland, Mahoning county, O., where William studies at the Union seminary until he is 17.

1859. Becomes a member of the Methodist Episcopal church in Poland.

1860. Enters the junior class in Allegheny college, Meadville, Pa., but poor health prevents the completion of the course. Subsequently teaches in a, public school near Poland and later becomes a clerk in the Poland postoffice.

1861. June 11. Enlists as a private in Company E, of the Twentythird Ohio volunteer infantry.

1862. April 15. Promoted to commissary sergeant while in the winter's camp at Fayette, W. Va.

1862. Sept. 24. Promoted to second lieutenant, in recognition of services at the battle of Antietam. Wins the highest esteem of the colonel of the regiment, Rutherford B. Hayes, and becomes a member of his staff.

1863. Feb. 7. Promoted to first lieutenant.

1864. July 25. Promoted to captain for gallantry at the battle of Kernstown, near Winchester, Va.

1864. Oct. 11. First vote for president cast, while on a march, for Abraham Lincoln.

1864. Shortly after the battle of Cedar Creek (October 19), Captain McKinley serves on the staffs of General George Crook and General Winfield S. Hancock.

1865. Assigned as acting assistant adjutant general on the staff of General Samuel S. Carroll, commanding the veteran reserve corps

at Washington.


1865. March 13. Commissioned by President Lincoln as major by brevet in the volunteer United States army, "for gallant and meritorious service at the battles of Opequan, Cedar Creek and Fisher's Hill." 1865. July 26. Mustered out of the army with his regiment, having never been absent from his command on sick leave during more than four years' service.

1865. Returns to Poland and at once begins the study of law.

1866. Enters the Albany (X. Y.) law school.

1867. Admitted to the bar at Warren, O., in March. Accepting the advice of an elder sister teaching in Canton. O., he begins the practice of law in Qfhton and makes that place his home.


1869. Elected prosecuting attorney of Stark county on the republican ticket, although the county had usually been democratic.

1871. Jan. 25. Marries Miss Ida Saxton, of Canton. (Two daughters born to Mr. and Mrs. McKinley—Katie in 1871 and Ida in 1873— and both lost in early childhood).

1871. Fails of re-election as prosecuting attorney by forty-five votes, and for the next five years devotes himself successfully to the practice of law, and becomes a lending member of the bar of Stark county.

1872. Though not a candidate, very'active as a campaign speaker in the Grant-Greeley presidential campaign.

1875. Especially active and conspicuous as a campaigner in the closely contested state election in which Rutherford 13. Hayes is elected governor.


1876. Elected member of the house of representatives by 3,300 majority, his friend Hayes being elected to the presidency.

1878. Re-elected to congress by 1,234 majority, his district in Ohio having been gerrymandered to his disadvantage by a democratic legislature.

1880. Re-elected to congress by 3,571 majority. Appointed a member of the ways and means committee, to succeed President-elect Garfield.

1882. The republicans suffer reverses throughout the country in the congressional election and McKinley is re-elected by a majority of only 8.

1884. Prominent in opposition to the proposed "Morrison tariff" in congress.

1884. As a delegate-at-large to the republican national convention in Chicago actively supports James G. Blaine for the presidential nomination.

1884. Re-elected to congress by a majority of 2,000, although his district had again been gerrymandered against him.

1886. Re-elected to congress by a majority of 2,550.

1886. Leads the minority opposition in congress against the "Mills tariff bill."

1888. Delegate-at-large to the national convention in Chicago that nominated Benjamin Harrison, and serves as chairman of the committee on resolutions. Many delegates wish McKinley to become a nominee, but he stands firm in his support of John Sherman.

1888. Elected to congress for the seventh successive time, receiving a majority of 4,100 votes.

1889. At the organization of the Fifty-first congress, is a candidate for speaker of the house, but is defeated on the third ballot in the Republican caucus by Thomas B. Reed.

1890. Upon the death of William D. Kelley in January McKinley becomes chairman of the ways and means committee and leader of his party in the house. He introduces a bill "to simplify the laws in relation to the collection of revenues," known as the "customs administration bill." He also introduces a general tariff bill. The bill becomes a law October 6.

1890. As a result of the gerrymandered congressional district and the reaction against the republican party throughout the country, caused by the protracted struggle over the tariff bill, McKinley is defeated in the election for congress by 300 votes in counties that had previously gone democratic by 3,000.


1891. Nov. 3. Elected governor of Ohio by a plurality of 21,511, polling the largest vote that had ever been cast for governor in Ohio. His opponent is the democratic governor, James E. Campbell.

1892. As delegate-at-large to the national convention at Minneapolis and chairman of the convention, McKinley refuses to permit the consideration of his name and supports the renomination of President Harrison. The roll call results as follows: Harrison 535, Blaine, 182, McKinley 182, Reed 4, Lincoln 1.

1892. Death of William McKinley, Sr., in November.

1893. Unanimously renominated for governor of Ohio and re-elected by a plurality of 80.995, this majority being the greatest ever recorded, with a single exception during the civil war, for any candidate in the history of the state.

1896. June 18. At the Republican national convention in St. Louis is nominated for president on the first ballot, the result of the voting being as follows: McKinley 66iy2, Reed 84^, Quay 60J/2, Morton 58, Allison 353^, Cameron 1.


1896. Xov. 3. Receives a popular vote in the presidential election of 7,104,779, a plurality of 601,854 over his democratic opponent, William J. Bryan. In the electoral college later McKinley receives 271 votes, against 176 for Bryan.

1897. March 4. Inaugurated President of the United States for the twenty-eighth quadrennial term.

1897. March 6. Issues proclamation for an extra session of congress to assemble March 15. The president's message dwells solely upon the need of a revision of the existing tariff law.

1897. May 17. In response to an appeal from the President congress appropriates $50,000 for the relief of the destitution in Cuba.

1897. July 24. The "Dingley tariff bill" receives the president's approval.

1897. Dec. 12. Death of President McKinley's mother at Canton, O.

1898. Both branches of congress vote unanimously (the house on March 8 by a vote of 313 to o and the senate by a vote of 76 to o on the following day) to place $50,000,000 at the disposal of the president to be used at his discretion "for the national defense."

1898. March 23. The president sends to the Spanish government through Minister Woodford at Madrid, an ultimatum regarding the intolerable condition of affairs in Cuba.

1898. March 28. The report of the court of inquiry on the destruction of the Maine at Havana, on February 15, is transmitted by the president to congress.

1898. April 11. The president sends a message to congress outlining the situation, declaring that intervention is necessary and advising against the recognition of the Cuban government.

1898. April 21. The Spanish government sends Minister Woodford his passports, thus beginning the war.

1898. April 23. The president issues a call for 125,000 volunteers.

1898. April 24. Spain formally declares that war exists with the United States.


1898. April 25. The President sends message to congress recommending the passage of a joint resolution declaring that war exists with Spain. On the same day both brandies of congress passed such a resolution.

1898. May 25. The President issues a call for 75,000 additional volunteers.

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