William Jennings Bryan

Today in History, June 9: 1915 – William Jennings Bryan, US Secretary of State, resigns. After a German U-Boat had torpedoed a British passenger ship, the Lusitania, resulting in the deaths of 128 Americans, Bryan sent a conciliatory, almost apologetic message to the German government without President Wilson’s consent. Germany felt impowered and issued an aggressive statement, to which Wilson replied in kind, leaving little doubt that America would not tolerate the sinking of non-combatants. Germany backed off, for a time, and Bryan resigned in protest, believing Wilson was leading the nation towards war. Bryan had been an impressive orator, 3 times a candidate for president, and L. Frank Baum’s inspiration for the Cowardly Lion of the Wizard of Oz in 1900.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.