Howe, Edward
Autograph Letter Signed, 149 Trinity Avenue, New York, November 29, 1897, to Joseph

Octavo, 4 pages, bottom edge of pages one and two torn, with some loss, old tape repairs to tope edge, paper somewhat tanned and soiled, else in good legible condition.

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Howe, a thoughtful Socialist in the Bronx, writes his friend:


“Dear Joseph,

       … I rejoice that you are enjoying a touch of nature and scenery. We see little here besides brick and mortar. Our streets might be planned so as to show more of nature’s beauty. Streets wider, and with trees for shade… I have long thought that government should control the public works. R.R.s, Telegraph, Gas Works, etc. [Text missing] groceries etc. might better be left to private enterprise. But this is a great subject, that of Sociology, which is the science of Man’s Social Relations, and embraces the idea of Socialism. The Postal System is our chief object lesson, indicating what may be done. It is suggested that there might be a Postal Savings Bank. Let a man deposit money on an order of Post office payable to himself, with interest or without. That would be safe. That bank could not fail, as long as Uncle Sam lived. I think the Post Office might take the place of the Express Companies and it does in some measure, with the 4th Class Matter. Let the ‘cent an ounce’ be a cent a pound, and the Express companies would cease to charge such high prices, or go out of the business. There should be laws strong enough to punish men for cornering the means of life, such as flour, sugar, coal, and articles that all people use as necessaries. Some men would create a monopoly of air and water, if they could get the power. This whole subject of Society & Social rights and duties is yet in its infancy. The Socialists are doing good work in studying up the matter. There is an increase in the number of newspaper and magazine articles on the subject. It is kept in people’s minds by the talk of the Populists as well as the Anarchists. Truth will come to the front. Lately, a Russian Anarchist lectured in Chickering Hall, at the request of the men of Columbia College, and some of the clergy of this city. I favor a free discussion. If anything wrong is said, let it be met and refuted. There never was so much said in favor of the rights of man as there is now. We are all pursuing our education in this branch. Some food must come of it. No man who has the welfare of any community at heart can refuse to lend an ear to any reasonable discussion of it …”