Q: I purchased this print for my husband about 25 years ago. He is a schoolteacher, so I thought he would appreciate it. At the top it says "Public Schools, the Bulwark of this Country" and at the bottom it says "Presented Congressman William S. Linton, of Michigan, by Friends of the Public Schools, Residents of Washington DC Upon Convening of Congress Dec. 3 of 1894." It measures approximately 35 x 28 inches. I have searched for information, but have found nothing. Any history you could give me would be appreciated.
A: William Linton was a U.S. Congressman from Michigan from March 1893 to March 1897. He was against giving public funds to sectarian schools. Linton was a member of the American Prescriptive Association, an anti-Catholic organization founded in 1887 that was also opposed to public funding of sectarian schools. The group claimed that 20 members of Congress were members in 1894, but Linton was the only one who admitted it publicly. The other men pictured on your poster were U.S. Senators or Representatives who were also opposed to public funding of sectarian schools. Linton added an amendment to the 1896 Indian appropriation bill for money for Indian schools that said no money appropriated should be used for sectarian schools.