McLane, John Augustus Hendrix, 1840-1893

John Augustus Hendrix McLane (known as J. Hendrix McLane) was born in Jackson County, Georgia, March 23, 1848. His family was relatively poor and had been previously settled in South Carolina. His older brother fought in the Confederate army and died of battle wounds in l864. As a young man, J.H. McLane returned to South Carolina, married and, in l874, emigrated to Arkansas. His wife died shortly afterward and he returned to Feasterville, South Carolina, with their small daughter. Despite a limited formal education, he had studied philosophy, history and literature. In 1886, J.H. McLane received a two year scholarship to Tufts College Theological School. He met his second wife, Mary Clifford Friend, in Massachusetts. After the birth of the first of their four children in 1888, she joined her husband in South Carolina.

The political career of J.H. McLane can be divided into five stages corresponding to his party affiliations. Before 1878 he was an active and progressive member of the Democratic Party. However, as a poor farmer, oppressed by the scarcity of cash and by low prices on farm products, he was drawn to the Greenback Party. In 1879 he attended the Greenback Convention in Washington opposing fusion with the Democratic Party; the following year he was nominated by the Greenback-Labor Party to run for Congress. As a candidate he propagated his belief that the farmers of South Carolina had not wished to secede but were forced to take such action by Bourbon appeals to racism. He argued that the disfranchisement of the Negro after 1876 resulted in the establishment of a Bourbon oligarchy.


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2016-08-12 10:08:15 pm

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