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the publication of a series of volumes devoted to applied history. The first volume of this series appeared two years ago. It contains scholarly historical and comparative studies of such subjects as taxation, the regulation of municipal public utilities, indemnity for work accidents, primary elections, corrupt practices legislation and road legislation. These monographs include not only the history of the methods of dealing with these subjects adopted in Iowa in the past, but also a study of the experiences of other States. All of these problems are now demanding solution in accordance with the principles of equity and good government, and it is the purpose of the State Historical Society to contribute curate scientific and impartial information. defined by Dr. Shambaugh, applied history is the use of the scientific knowledge of history and experience in efforts to solve present problems of human betterment.' Thus defined, it comprehends "first of all," the plain facts gathered through careful investigation from the history of our own State, from contemporary experiences in other States, and from selected foreign sources; second, the expert interpretation of all the facts collected; third, the expert definition of regulation, legislation and administration; and, finally, the application of these standards of legislation and administration to existing needs and conditions.1 14 In short, the State Historical Society proposes "to apply the scientific knowledge of history in working out a rational program of human progress in government and administra

tion." "15


The application of the historical and comparative method to the study and solution of present-day problems has thus opened up a wide field of usefulness for the State Historical Society of Iowa, as shown by the monographs presented in the first volume of the Iowa Applied History Series. The launching of this series came about in the following manner: Dr. Brindley's "History of Taxation in Iowa," having appeared in January, 1911, the Thirty-fourth General Assembly, at its regular session which opened in the same month, through a concurrent resolution 16 requested the State Historical Society of Iowa to furnish each member of the Senate and House of Representatives with a copy of this work. In recognition of the immense practical significance of this subject and the value of this investigation in securing scientific legislation, the annual support of the Society was increased from $12,000 to $16,000, with the understanding that researches along the lines represented by Dr. Brindley's work would be continued.

In harmony with this idea the Society instituted two important lines of research and investigation, the results of which were published in time for distribu

13 "Applied History," Vol. I, Editor's Introduction, p. vii. 14"Applied History," Vol. I, Editor's Introduction, pp.

vi. vii.


“Applied History," Vol. I, Editor's Introduction, p. xi.

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16" Journal of the House of Representatives, 1911," p. 180; Journal of the Senate, 1911," p. 159.

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tion among the members of the Thirty-fifth General Assembly which convened in 1913. The first of these was the 'History of Road Legislation in Iowa," by Dr. Brindley, and the other, "The History of Work Accident Indemnity in Iowa," by Dr. Downey. In order, however, to carry out the purpose of the concurrent resolution mentioned above, the Society inaugurated the Iowa Applied History Series, the special aim of which is to give to the public, and especially to public officials, the results of its researches in the economic, social and political history of Iowa. And so the first volume of this series was immediately prepared and published and distributed among the members of the Thirty-fifth General Assembly in 1913. It contains the results of Dr. Brindley's researches on the history of taxation in Iowa and the history of road legislation in Iowa, and Dr. Downey's history of work accident indemnity in Iowa and the history of the regulation of urban utilities in Iowa, together with two other historical and comparative studies on primary elections and corrupt practices legislation.1

The value of these monographs may be readily appreciated by the fact that the recent epoch-making road law enacted by the General Assembly of Iowa in 1913 is based on Dr. Brindley's comprehensive study of this problem, and that the law in all its essential features is an embodiment of Dr. BrindIn this way ley's findings and recommendations.18 the value of an historical and comparative study of current problems of legislation is coming to be appreciated by practical men of affairs, as well as by historical students and economists. It was, indeed, due largely to the value of the first volume of the Iowa Applied History Series in the enactment of legislation that the General Assembly increased the annual support of the Society from $16,000 to $20,000.19 And the results have justified the appropriation. Finally, it may be observed that a member of the Supreme Court of Iowa told the writer not long ago that tax reform in Iowa would eventually have to be along the lines proposed by Dr. Brindley in his History of Taxation in Iowa.20

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17 The second volume in the Iowa Applied History Series was issued early in 1915. It contains the following applied history essays: (1) Scientific Law-making; (2) Reor(3) ganization of State Government in Iowa; Rule in Iowa; (4) 'Direct Legislation in Iowa; (5) Equal Suffrage in Iowa;" (6) "Selection of Public Officials in Iowa; (7) "Removal of Public Officials in Iowa; (8) The Merit System in Iowa; (9) "Social Legislation in Iowa; (10) Child Labor Legislation in Iowa; and (11) "Poor Relief Legislation in Iowa."


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18 A copy of this law with marginal references, forms, directions, and legal opinions may be secured by writing to the State Highway Commission, Ames, Iowa.

19 Statement of several influential members of the Thirty-fifth General Assembly of Iowa.

20 In this connection, it may be stated that Dr. Brindley was the secretary of the Special Tax Commission. which made its report to the Thirty-fifth General Assembly.

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(c) Iowa Historical Lectures (1894). (d) (1894).

Amish Mennonites in Iowa," by B. L. Wick

(e) "Claim Association of Johnson County," edited by Benjamin F. Shambaugh (1894).

(f) "Debates of the Constitutional Conventions of 1844 and 1846," edited by Benjamin F. Shambaugh (1900).

(g) The Robert Lucas Journal of the War of 1812," edited by John C. Parish (1906).

(h) "Constitution of Iowa" (Pocket Edition), edited by Benjamin F. Shambaugh (1907).

(i) "A Brief History of the State Historical Society of Iowa," by Benjamin F. Shambaugh (1907). (j) "Proceedings of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Constitution of Iowa," edited by Benjamin F. Shambaugh (1907).

(k) "A Retrospect of Sixty Years," by J. L. Pickard (1908).

(1) "An Address Delivered at the Celebration of the Sixtieth Anniversary of the State University of Iowa," by H. E. Deemer (1908).

(m) "Amana: The Community of True Inspiration," by Bertha M. H. Shambaugh (1908).

(n) "Autobiography of John Chambers," edited by John C. Parish (1908).

(o) "The Battle of Shiloh," by J. W. Rich (1909).

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(v) The Quakers of Iowa," by Louis Jones (1914).

(w) "History of Township Iowa," by C. R. Aurner (1914).



(x) "Decisive Episodes in Western History," by L. G. Weld (1914).

(y) "One Hundred Topics in Iowa History," by Dan E. Clark (1914).

7. Bulletins of Information. The Bulletins of Information which have been published include the following:

(a) Bulletin of Information No. 1, April, 1904, entitled, "Provisions for Membership in the State Historical Society of Iowa."

(b) Bulletin of Information No. 2, May, 1904, entitled, "An Iowa Program for Study Clubs."

(c) Bulletin of Information No. 3, July, 1904, entitled, "Suggestions to Public Libraries and Local Historical Societies Relative to Collecting and Preserving Materials of Local History."

(d) Bulletin of Information No. 4, June, 1905, entitled, "Suggestions to Local Historians in Iowa." (e) Bulletin of Information No. 5, April, 1906, entitled, "Organization of County Historical Societies."

(f) Bulletin of Information No. 6, July, 1907 (revised and enlarged edition of Bulletin No. 2), entitled, "An Iowa Program for Study Clubs."

This brief review of the research and publication work of the State Historical Society of Iowa will suggest at once the scope of its activity and the nature of its plans for the future. It is the purpose of the Society to continue the series of publications already inaugurated, and to add any others that may be deemed practicable as the work proceeds.21 Thus for several years past there have been in preparation several monographs which are now in press, and which will soon be ready for distribution to the members of the Society. These monographs include the first two volumes of a comprehensive "History of Education in Iowa," by C. R. Aurner; the "History of Poor Relief Legislation in Iowa," by J. E. Briggs. The last-named monograph is the first in a new series entitled, "The Iowa Social History Series." In addition to these publications, the second volume of "Applied History," dealing with current problems of legislation, will be distributed in January, 1915. Finally, it may be stated that a history of the settlement of Iowa is in preparation; also a biography of Samuel J. Kirkwood, Iowa's famous war Governor; and a history of Iowa and the tariff.


But these publications mark only the beginning of a thorough and comprehensive history of Iowa, for the field of Iowa history is vast in its scope, encompassing, as it does, the entire life of the State from its earliest beginnings to the present time, and affording the materials for a study of the evolution of a typical western commonwealth. Studied as history is a chapter in the history of the Mississippi constituent part of the Mississippi Valley, Iowa Valley. Thus considered, every contribution to the history of Iowa becomes a part of the history of the West, and the history of the West is in a very real sense the history of the nation. Though the labors to be performed are very great, indeed, before the history of the State can really be said to be written, the State Historical Society has nevertheless made a real beginning, for the field has been explored, the materials located, and the lines of research and publication work inaugurated, which, when rounded out and brought down to date, will constitute a fairly complete and comprehensive history of the State. The Society now has the legislative appropriations which enable it to finance the undertaking, a number of research workers have enlisted in the cause, and the people of the State are coming more and

21 Statement of the Superintendent of the State Historical Society of Iowa, Dr. Benjamin F. Shambaugh.

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more to take an active interest in the work. This is shown, for example, by the formation of twentyone local or auxiliary societies throughout the State, and the increase in membership to over five hundred. Finally, this review of the aims and activities of the State Historical Society would be incomplete did it not include a brief explanation of the research laboratory methods employed in the preparation of manuscripts for publication.

All research work in Iowa history is carried on under the direct supervision of the superintendent and editor of the Society, Dr. Benjamin F. Shambaugh, to whose painstaking labors the State of Iowa is greatly indebted, and to whose wise and inspiring counsel every research worker feels a deep sense of gratitude and loyalty. Dr. Shambaugh is assisted by a staff of helpers, consisting of Dr. Dan E. Clark, assistant editor; Dr. F. E. Horack, secretary; Eliza L. Johnson, and several others. This supervision co-operation means that the work must measure up to the standards of excellence in historical investigation. Careless methods are not permitted, for there are no short-cuts in scientific research work. Nor is prejudice or partisanship permitted to influence the workers in their investigations. The impartial presentation of all the available information of any given subject is a fundamental requirement.


Weeks and months are sometimes consumed in gathering materials before a line is written, and the data frequently comes from widely scattered sources. The State Historical Society of Iowa profits by the hearty co-operation of the large libraries of the country, such, for example, as the Library of Congress at Washington, D. C., the State Historical Society of Wisconsin at Madison, Wisconsin, and the State Historical Department at Des Moines, Iowa, which kindly lend books and other materials for the use of Iowa scholars engaged in research. Whenever necessary, the research worker is sent to the place where collections of source materials are to be found. Finally, when he is convinced that he has at his disposal all of the available data relative to the subject upon which he is working, he begins writing on a paragraph, monograph, or perhaps a volume. Carefully, and with fairness, he records the facts that he has found, making frequent citations to authors and sources in order that the reader may know upon what the author bases his statements. In brief, it may be said that the fundamental requirements in the preparation of manuscripts for publication are: (1) painstaking gathering of the facts; (2) interpretation of the materials collected; and (3) literary presentation.

After the writing has been completed, every assertion of the author, every quotation, every date, and every statement of fact is checked up and verified. Then the paper or monograph is subjected to a critical editing, after which it is sent to the printers or preserved for future publication. Thus from the gathering of the material to the reading of the last proof sheet, thoroughness, accuracy and fairness are insisted upon as basic requirements in all the work

MAR done under the auspices of the Iowa Historical Society. GENERAL

While all the workers engaged in research work in Iowa history are imbued with an enthusiasm for the work and find their greatest compensation in the work itself, yet the real motive which animates all this activity is not one of self-interest. The real purpose of research work which is being carried on, is that eventually the results may be published by the State Historical Society, and thus be made accessible to the people of Iowa through distribution. to the members of the Society and to the public libraries throughout the State, and in other States of the Union. In this way the Historical Society as a State institution can be of greatest service to the And so there grows up a carepeople of the State.

fully written literature of Iowa history, which will contain not only biography and other important recognized branches of history, but also a mass of historical information which may be applied to the solution of current problems of government and to the promotion of the social and economic welfare of the people.22



A newspaper despatch from Berlin states that the German educational authorities are taking care to teach children the history of the war as fast as that history is made. The Prussian Minister of Education has issued a circular letter of instructions to school inspectors pointing out that the history hour must be devoted principally to giving pupils a clear idea of the course and development of the great war. There must be awakened in the children an understanding of the serious and thrilling time in which they are living. While everything must be kept out of the schools which might implant into the hearts of the children overweening self-conceit and contempt and hatred for other peoples, still they should be filled with a joyous and conscious pride that they are members of the great people who are making heroic sacrifices in a just struggle against overwhelming odds."

Announcement is made in the February number of the "American Political Science Review" that the Executive Council of the American Political Science Association has voted to discontinue the publication of the annual volume of Proceedings." At the same time it was agreed to enlarge the size of the "Review" to about 220 pages an issue, and to publish in it such of the papers read at the annual meetings as seem desirable.

22 This paper was delivered before the Applied Social Science Club and the English Club of the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts during the academic year, 1914-1915. The writer was for several years a research assistant in the State Historical Society of Iowa.

Teaching of Contemporary History in the High School


This paper has a twofold purpose: (1) To present the results of a test in current events as given to the pupils of our local high school, and (2) To show to what extent attention is being given to the teaching of current events in the leading high schools of Washington. The object in giving this test to our own pupils was primarily to convince our teachers of history that more attention might profitably be devoted to the study of every-day happenings in the world about us. I wish to keep as far as possible from a priori assumption; but if the training which the pupil receives in any school subject is to have no bearing on his adjustment to the general life of the world, one may be pardoned a good deal of skepticism as to its value. We are told in every teachers' meeting that the purpose of teaching history is (1) "to properly inform the pupil as to the facts and conditions in the past that have been significant in shaping the present, and (2) to train his judgment so that he can think for himself and arrive at sound conclusions on public questions." Some of us who have actually been called upon to teach history have sometimes wondered if there could be any fatal objection to testing the pupil's real ability to think on present-day questions before he leaves school, instead of leaving the results of our laborious educational process to reveal themselves in later life; and we have asked ourselves if his own interest in the sharpening of the tool might not be enhanced if he could be allowed to try its edge on a real every-day problem. We insist at our meetings on the necessity of correct historical method, and doubtless most of us are able to communicate it to our pupils; but their own confidence in their mastery of the method would assuredly not be diminished if we should give them an occasional opportunity to try it out. As I stated above, my primary object in giving the test which I am about to discuss was to convince our history teachers of the need of recognizing current events in their work. This test was given, wholly without warning, to the members of the class in Civics at their regular recitation period on March 4. Thirty-one members of the class were present. The plan was to test both their knowledge of facts and their power to reason from those facts. The subject selected was the Mexican situation. Each pupil was asked (1) to summarize briefly the state of affairs in Mexico, and (2) to consider the wisdom of the various solutions proposed.

In answering the first question, they were told to imagine that they were trying to explain the trouble in Mexico to some one who knew nothing about it. In grading the papers, I assumed somewhat arbitrarily without doubt, that a wholly satisfactory paper would touch in some degree upon each of the following points:

1. Social inequality in Mexico.
2. Political inequality.

3. Ignorance of the masses.
4. The overthrow of Diaz.

5. Administration and overthrow of Madero.
6. Accession of Huerta.

7. His promise of a free election.
8. Wilson's policy of non-recognition.
9. Carranza and Villa.

10. Foreign interests in Mexico.

Not one of the class of 31 touched on all these points. One member mentioned 8-the high-water mark; 2 mentioned 6; 5 mentioned 4; 9 mentioned 3; 4 mentioned 2; 4 only 1, and 6 failed to touch any of them, although they wrote as much as any of the others. Taking up the points separately, the number of pupils mentioning each point was as follows: 1. Social inequality, 8.

2. Political inequality, 11. 3. Ignorance, 6.

4. Overthrow of Diaz, 11. 5. Madero, 9.

6. Accession of Huerta, 15 (the high-water mark). 7. Promise of free election, 4. 8. Wilson's policy, 1.

9. Carranza and Villa, 6. 10. Foreign interests, 10.

The average number of points touched upon by each pupil would be thus about 2.3-certainly a very unsatisfactory showing; but it must be remembered that the class had had no previous work on this subject, but were compelled to trust wholly to the result of their own reading. Perhaps a similar test applied to an equal number of their elders would fail to bring results much more creditable.

The second part of the test, where the appeal was to the judgment rather than to the memory, worded as follows:

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Three solutions are proposed:


a. That the United States intervene alone to restore order.

"b. That she intervene in concert with the European powers.

"c. That she withdraw entirely from the situa tion.

Which of these seems to you the wisest policy? State your reasons. What arguments do you see against the other two?

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Two of the class failed to write on this part of the test. The other 29 were divided in their opinion, as follows:

Fourteen favored intervention by the United States alone.

Nine favored joint intervention.

Six favored non-intervention.

The arguments brought forward by those who favored intervention by the United States alone, and the number of times each was used, were as follows:

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1. Our interests most endangered, 10.

2. American citizens in danger, 3.

3. Better able to keep in touch with Mexicans, 2. 4. Better able to rule Mexico, as shown in Cuba, 2. 5. Are closer, 2.

Against intervention alone, the following arguments were used:

1. The expense and loss of life too great, 3.

2. Other powers would protest, 2.

3. Mexico would resist more desperately, 2.

4. We should be accused of selfish motives, 2.

5. Would mean war with Japan, 2.

6. Would take too long, 1.

7. We have no right to interfere without international agreement, 1.

In favor of joint intervention, the following reasons were given:

1. Mexico would submit more quickly, 3.

2. All Europe is concerned, 1.

3. It would be easier to restore order, 1.

4. Europe is ready to help, 1.

Against joint intervention:

1. So many differences of opinion would lead to international strife, 8.

2. The Monroe Doctrine forbids it, 8.

3. Mexico would be divided among the powers, 2. 4. We would be placed under obligations to other powers, 1.

5. Europe might gain foothold in America, 1.

6. Europe not well informed as to conditions in Mexico, 1.

7. Dispute would arise as to form of government, 1.

8. Other nations might combine against our interests, 1.

In favor of non-intervention:

1. The present age is one of peace, 1.

2. Better to educate Mexico gradually, 1.

3. The will of the majority must ultimately triumph, 1.

4. Mexico will exhaust herself and be more willing to restore order, 1.

Against non-intervention:

1. The trouble will go on indefinitely, 3.

2. Texas may be invaded, 4.

3. Mexico needs help, 3.

4. Some other nation will step in, 2.

5. Our citizens should be protected, 1.

6. Neutrality has accomplished nothing, 1. we should not intervene unless

One boy says

Europe insists on it, then alone.

One girl says that England and the United States should intervene in concert.

No one makes any reference to action in concert with the Spanish-American republics.

Occasionally the misinformation becomes acute; for


"Mexico until the middle of the nineteenth century was governed by the Emperor of France" (evidently a faint reflection of the Maximilian episode). Diaz was succeeded in the Presidency by his son."

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The United States sent troops to Mexico a few years ago and set up a provisional government."

It might add interest just here to read you a specimen of their work, just as it was handed in without correction of any kind.

This paper, by a boy, is as follows:

The Mexican nation is one in which a great deal of interest is now shown. The present trouble there has aroused much comment and led to the question of the cause of the trouble. In order to explain the cause it is necessary to understand the nature of the people. In the first place, Mexico is a semi-tropical country. The people are a cross between Spanish and Indian people and they show the characteristics of both. They are lazy, hot-headed, ignorant and adventurous. They are made up of fifteen million people. Of these, eleven million are totally ignorant, oppressed by the other four million, poverty-stricken, and have no idea of democratic govt.

We have now taken a view of the nature of the people. Let us next note the political causes that led to the present crisis. Thirty-five years ago Diaz became dictator of Mexico. For thirty years he ruled with a hand of iron. Those who were down were pushed farther down. All rebellions were immediately quelled. It was through such conditions that the mass of Mexicans today were raised. It is this example that has been made for them that had led to such atrocities as have been made by Generals Villa and Carranza.

When Diaz left the chair vacant another man less cruel, capable and unscrupulous attempted to carry out the work that was left to him. He found himself surrounded by treason rebellion and desertion. Soon he was assassinated by Huerta, who now holds the place of dictator.

We are now brought up to the present time. Huerta is absolutely unscrupulous, cruel and is ruling with an iron hand. There is rebellion in northern Mexico. One party is led by Carranza and the other by Villa. These generals are very successful and until lately have been kept within the bounds of humanity. Trouble has arisen through the killing of a British subject by Villa, who claims he had orders from Carranza. This is the situation as it stands. The U. S. and other European powers have refused to acknowledge the government of Huerta.

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2. The only hope for Mexico (as I see it) is for the people to become educated to democratic government. To do this intervention by the U. S., is necessary. She must do this alone because it is a one-man job" and must be handled so. The European powers must keep their hands off America! The U. S. must set up compulsory schools and must have a fair apportionment of the land. The people must be taught to care for this land and must be educated to representative government. In this way and only in this way can the Mexican situation be relieved. For ignorant people cannot forget years of oppression and misgovernment, and this situation cannot relieve itself unless the cause is removed.

What is undoubtedly the worst paper, also emanating from one of the boys, reads as follows, but I should have to reproduce the penmanship to get the full effect:

Part of the mexicain wonts one kind of goverment and the other part wonts another and these is another reason that is just importent or maybe a little more so and that is there are two big companys owning land with oil and other minerals, one of these companys is in United States and the other is some forign country. If the side that the Unitd States company is wins then the goverment is fixed so they can get possession of all the oil fields and other

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