Jones, Mary Harris (1830–1930)

edited and compiled by
Mary K. Haman


Voices of Democracy: The U. S. Oratory Project

Department of Communication,
2130 Skinner Building,
University of Maryland,
College Park, MD 21774

Brief notes on the text are included in the editorial
declaration of this header.

Jones, Mother. “Speech at a Public Meeting on the Steps of the Capitol Charleston, West Virginia” (15 August 1912). In The Speeches and Writings of Mother Jones. Edward Steel, ed. Pittsburgh, PA: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1988. [=A] Permission was granted by the University of Pittsburgh Press to publish this text.
Jones, Mother. “Speech at a Public Meeting on the Steps of the Capitol Charleston, West Virginia” (15 August 1912). In West Virginia Mining Investigation Commission Records. West Virginia Mining Investigation Commission. George Wallace Papers, West Virginia Collection. Morgantown: WV: West Virginia University: A and M No. 2036. [=B]

The copy-text is the speech transcript printed in the Steel collection (=A). Steel states that “all the speeches in this collection are or purport to be transcriptions taken by stenographers who were present on the occasions. . . . The coal operators of the Kanawha Valley hired a stenographer to take down Mother Jones’s remarks at a series of public meetings in 1912, and the transcriptions were preserved both in manuscript and in public documents” (xiii). Steel claims to have intervened with the collected texts only to correct minor typographical and spelling errors and to standardize stenographers’ use of single or double quotation marks. The reliability of Steel’s collection is noted by several scholars, including Elliott J. Gorn, Mother Jones: The Most Dangerous Woman in America (New York: Hill and Wang, 2001), 350; and Mari Boor Tonn, “Militant Motherhood: Labor’s Mary Harris ‘Mother’ Jones,” Quarterly Journal of Speech 82 (1996): 1-21.

Steel’s print of Jones’ speech text is followed for paragraphing, spelling, and punctuation.
Paragraph numbers have been added in square brackets.

The text of this edition has been thoroughly checked and proofread. All double quotation marks are rendered with “, all single quotation marks with apostrophe ‘.

Non-grammatical forms have been changed and noted to reflect standard grammatical forms of language as reflected in (B).

Standard date values are given in ISO form: yyyy-mm-dd.

Characteristics of interpretation of this edition are as follows:

Proper names are not marked.
Dates are not marked.
Emphasis is marked without interpretation.

Departures from the copy-text and general editorial procedures are as follows:

End-of-line hyphenated words in the source text were printed without the hyphens.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Library of Congress Classification

15 August 1912

The Steps of the State Capitol, Charleston, West Virginia.


Labor and laboring classes–United States–History
Miners–United States–History
Trade-unions–United States–History



VOD Associate Editor

Gaines, Robert N.

Created TEI header and xml conformant file. Validated on 25 March 2006 in XMetal 3.1.3 against teixlite.dtd (version 2004-07-16)


editor and compiler

Haman, Mary K.

Data entry and proof-reading of electronic copy-text