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President McKinley Warms Up to Buffalo ~ His Final Speech 1901 | Community Spirit

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President McKinley Warms Up to Buffalo ~ His Final Speech 1901
President McKinley Warms Up to Buffalo ~ His Final Speech 1901


"Whatever I can do for Buffalo, is at Buffalo's disposal, and I shall be glad to do all I can toward making your Exposition a success." 

- President M'Kinley
  • Washington D.C., Feb.1 ---- This in substance was the prompt and cheerful response of the President of the United States, the one man in all this great country who can do most to help the Pan American Exposition, as he replied to the explanatory addresses of the members of the committee who called on him yesterday afternoon.  And it was evident from his tone and manner that President McKinley meant every word he said, and that in him the exposition will have a warm friend and a valuable helper.
  • Excerpts From Mckinley's Final Speech as President* The Pan American Exposition September 5, 1901
  • " I AM  glad again to be in the city of Buffalo and exchange greetings with her people, to whose generous hospitality I am not a stranger, and with whose good will I have been repeatedly and signally honored. To-day I have additional satisfaction in meeting and giving welcome to the foreign representatives assembled here, whose presence and participation in this Exposition have contributed in so marked a degree to its interest and success. To the commissioners of the Dominion of Canada and the British Colonies, the French Colonies, the Republics of Mexico and of Central and South America, and the commissioners of Cuba and Porto Rico, who share with us in this undertaking, we give the hand of fellowship and felicitate with them upon the triumphs of art, science, education and manufacture which the old has bequeathed to the new century.   Expositions are the timekeepers of progress. They record the world’s advancement. They stimulate the energy, enterprise and intellect of the people, and quicken human genius. They go into the home. They broaden and brighten the daily life of the people. They open mighty storehouses of information to the student. Every exposition, great or small, has helped to some onward step...
  •   Without competition we would be clinging to the clumsy and antiquated process of farming and manufacture and the methods of business of long ago, and the twentieth would be no further advanced than the eighteenth century. But tho commercial competitors we are, commercial enemies we must not be. The Pan-American Exposition has done its work thoroughly, presenting in its exhibits evidences of the highest skill and illustrating the progress of the human family in the Western Hemisphere. This portion of the earth has no cause for humiliation for the part it has performed in the march of civilization. It has not accomplished everything; far from it. It has simply done its best, and without vanity or boastfulness, and recognizing the manifold achievements of others it invites the friendly rivalry of all the powers in the peaceful pursuits of trade and commerce, and will cooperate with all in advancing the highest and best interests of humanity. The wisdom and energy of all the nations are none too great for the world work. The success of art, science, industry and invention is an international asset and a common glory....

  •   "My fellow citizens, trade statistics indicate that this country is in a state of unexampled prosperity. The figures show that we are furnishing profitable employment to the millions of working men throughout the United States. Our capacity to produce has developed so enormously, and our products have so multiplied, that the problem of more markets requires our urgent and immediate attention. By sensible trade arrangements, which will not interrupt our home production, we shall extend the outlets for our ever increasing surplus. What we produce beyond our domestic consumption must have vent abroad. The expansion of our trade and commerce is the pressing problem. Next in advantage to having the thing to sell is to have the conveyance to carry it to the buyer. We must encourage our merchant marine. We must have more ships. They must be under the American flag: built, manned, and owned by Americans. These will not only be profitable in a commercial sense, they will also be messengers of peace wherever they go. Reciprocity treaties are in harmony with the spirit of the times...
  •  We must build the isthmian canal which will unite the two oceans and give a straight line of communications with the western coasts of Central and South America, and Mexico. The construction of a pacific cable cannot be longer postponed. In the furtherance of these objects of national interest and concern, you are performing and important part. The good work will go on - it cannot be stopped. These buildings will disappear...
  •   This creation of art and beauty and industry will perish from sight. But who can tell the new thoughts that have been awakened, the ambition fired, and the high achievement that will be wrought through this exposition. Gentleman, let us ever remember that our interest is in concord, not conflict. And that our real eminence rests in the victories of peace, not those of war.  We hope that all who are represented here may be moved to higher and nobler efforts for their own and the world’s good, and that out of this city may come not only greater commerce and trade for us all, but, more essential than these, relations of mutual respect, confidence and friendship which will deepen and endure. Our earnest prayer is that God will graciously vouch safe prosperity, happiness and peace to all our neighbors, and like blessings to all the peoples and powers of earth."    President William McKinley

As we all know (or should) the Pan American Exposition turned out not to be such a warm friend to the President. On September 6, the day after this speech, the president was shot while shaking hands during a public reception at the Temple of Music, and died on Sept.14.

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