Lead: At the Democratic Convention of 1896 the candidate chosen was a champion of free silver.

                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

                Content: The burning issue in the campaign of 1896 was money. Debtors such as small farmers whose wheat and cotton was declining in price, wanted the government to increase the amount of silver coins in circulation thereby making it easier for them to buy equipment and pay off their loans. Creditors such as banks and railroads wanted the government to stick with the gold standard because gold was considered more valuable. Would policy shift to cheap silver or stay with the more precious gold backing for the currency? The Democrats in 1896 dumped their incumbent President Grover Cleveland and chose instead a thirty-six year old former congressman from Nebraska, William Jennings Bryan.

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