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the leaven for the loaf of elections; the “honorable men” with which to fill the platforms at public meetings, whose names might head the lists of representatives of the party in the public prints. Good men were as necessary to the machine as bad men. But their goodness must be negative; a goodness that did not extend far beyond itself and was satisfied and complacent in the contemplation of its own virtues. But positive goodness was another matter, dangerous, destructive and not to be entertained. Mr. Roosevelt, not being a negative, but a radically positive character, they found no place for him in their combinations. He would not have peace on any terms short of absolute honesty and efficiency. He had been offensive enough to the spoilsmen while he was in Washington, fighting day and night for the enforcement of the National Civil Service Law. To have him at the head of the Police Board of the city of New York meant war on corruption and no quarter. It was not to be borne. He must be crushed at the outset. After all, it was only one man against ten thousand, and the thousands had this one in their territory. This was the feeling of the machine politicians in New York when, on May 5, 1895, Theodore Roosevelt accepted the presidency of the newly appointed Police Board, with the understanding that the duty of that board was to cut out the chief source of civic corruption in the city by cleansing the police department. At the city election the previous fall William S. Strong had been elected Mayor on an anti-Tammany platform, by a coalition composed partly of the regular Republicans, partly of anti-Tammany Democrats, and partly of independents. The business depression throughout the country in 1893, which resulted in a general suspension of industries, followed by idleness and vagrancy, had caused a political reaction against the Demo

cratic party, which was then in power, and this

feeling no doubt contributed more or less to the success of the reform ticket; but it is doubtful if the result would have been materially changed had the National Democratic party still held favor with the people. Crime and lawlessness had grown to such enormous proportions under the protection of the dominant party in New York that even the dullest and most careless citizen felt the gravity of the situation. Corruption had honeycombed every department of the city government, and inefficiency, dishonesty and rottenness were everywhere in evidence. Especially was this true of the police force. This department had been so long under the absolute direction of the Tammany leaders, and stood in such close connection both with that organization and the people, that it had become the actual hand gathering from the criminal and depraved classes an immunity tax to pass it on to the men who held sway over the politics of the city. A portion of this money naturally stuck to the fingers of the transferring hand, but the bulk of the vast sum collected from those engaged in unlawful enterprises found its way into the chests of the “machine.” It must not be understood that Tammany was doing anything but what the opposing political machine would have done had it succeeded in getting such a perfect organization. There had been a time when the great Republican leaders had hoped to have this same settled advantage. They had been led by no less brilliant a man than Senator Conklin, and no less shrewd a politician than Senator Platt. But the rank and file of the two parties differed somewhat in character, differed just enough to make it impossible for the Republicans to hold their forces solid, whatever the issue. The influential leaders of the independent movements had generally been drawn from the Republican forces, and the machine of that party had been so often crippled by defections that it was no match for the closely knit and solidly constructed machine of its elder opponent. And so New York city had fallen completely under the domination of Richard Croker and his lieutenants. Mr. Roosevelt says of the conditions existing at the time: “No man not intimately acquainted with both the lower and humbler sides of New York life—for there is a wide distinction between the two—can realize how far the corruption, brought about by these conditions, extended. It would be difficult to overestimate the utter rottenness of many branches of the city administration, but the chief center of it was in the Police Department. Except in rare instances, where prominent politicians made demands which could not be refused, both promotions and appointments toward the close of Tammany rule were made almost solely for money, and the prices were discussed with cynical frankness.” Writers other than Mr. Roosevelt inform us that at this time in New York it was utterly impossible for a man to secure a position on the police force of New York city without payment of a set price, arranged and scheduled with reference solely to its chances for blackmail. This tariff of charges ranged from two to three hundred dollars for appointment as a patrolman, to twelve or fifteen thousand dollars for promotion to the position of captain. Men who paid thus liberally for their appointments did so with the assurance, if not openly then implied, that they would not be censured for pursuing any scheme that would bring them a good profit on the investment, so long as they were fair in the division of the spoils. There was but one way, besides that of open robbery, by which they could reimburse themselves for the original outlay and profit by the arrangement, and that was by blackmail. But those who were at all familiar with the situation did not hesitate to take the chances. The system of “collections” was so elaborate and complete that the chances for loss were small and the promise of big returns was bright. Every one at all familiar with the duties of an officer of police can readily understand how

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