Herbert Croly

Herbert David Croly (January 23, 1869 – May 17, 1930) was an intellectual leader of the progressive movement as an editor, political philosopher and a co-founder of the magazine The New Republic in early twentieth-century America. His political philosophy influenced many leading progressives including Theodore Roosevelt, as well as his close friends Judge Learned Hand and Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter.[2]

His book, The Promise of American Life (1909), looked to the constitutional liberalism as espoused by Alexander Hamilton, combined with the radical democracy of Thomas Jefferson.[3] The book was one of the most influential books in American political history, shaping the ideas of many intellectuals and political leaders. It also influenced the later New Deal. Calling themselves "The New Nationalists", Croly and Walter Weyl sought to remedy the relatively weak national institutions with a strong federal government. He actively promoted a strong army and navy and attacked pacifists who thought democracy at home and peace abroad was best served by keeping America weak.

Croly was one of the founders of modern liberalism in the United States, especially through his books, essays, and a highly influential magazine founded in 1914, The New Republic. In his 1914 book Progressive Democracy, Croly rejected the thesis that the liberal tradition in the United States was inhospitable to anti-capitalist alternatives. He drew from the American past a history of resistance to capitalist wage relations that was fundamentally liberal, and he reclaimed an idea that progressives had allowed to lapse—that working for wages was a lesser form of liberty. Increasingly skeptical of the capacity of social welfare legislation to remedy social ills, Croly argued that America's liberal promise could be redeemed only by syndicalist reforms involving workplace democracy. His liberal goals were part of his commitment to American republicanism.[4]

Herbert David Croly
H Croly
BornJanuary 23, 1869
DiedMay 17, 1930 (aged 61)
Santa Barbara, California
ResidenceCornish, New Hampshire
Alma materHarvard College (attended without graduation and later an honorary degree)
OccupationJournalist, magazine editor, author
Known forPolitical philosophy, intellectual leadership of the Progressive Movement
Political partyRepublican [1]
Spouse(s)Louise Emory


Herbert Croly was born in Manhattan, New York City in 1869 to journalists Jane Cunningham Croly—better known by her pseudonym “Jenny June”—and David Goodman Croly.

Jane Croly was a contributor to The New York Times, The Messenger, and The New York World. She was the editor of Demorest’s Illustrated Monthly for 27 years. Jane Croly wrote only on the subject of women and published nine books in addition to her work as a journalist. She was one of the best-known women in America when Herbert Croly was born.[2]

David Croly worked as a reporter for the Evening Post and The New York Herald, as well as the editor of The New York World for 12 years. He was also a noted pamphleteer during Abraham Lincoln's presidency.[2]

Herbert Croly married Louise Emory on May 30, 1892. They remained married until Herbert Croly’s death in 1930. They had no children.[2]


Croly attended the City College of New York for one year and entered Harvard College in 1886.[2]

David Croly soon became concerned that his son was being exposed to improper philosophical material at Harvard. The father was a follower of Auguste Comte and discouraged Herbert from studying theology and philosophers that did not agree with Comte. During Herbert’s first two years at Harvard, David became gravely ill, and in 1888 Herbert dropped out of Harvard to become his father’s private secretary and companion. His father died on April 29, 1889.

After Herbert married Louise Emory in 1892 he re-enrolled in Harvard. But, in 1893, Herbert suffered a nervous breakdown and withdrew again from Harvard. Herbert and Louise moved to Cornish, New Hampshire, where he recovered. In 1895, Herbert enrolled for the final time at Harvard at the age of 26. He excelled in his studies until 1899, when he withdrew for the last time from Harvard for unknown reasons, without a degree.

In 1910, after the publication of Herbert Croly’s book The Promise of American Life, he was awarded an honorary degree by Harvard University.[5]

Early career

Little is known about Croly’s immediate actions after he left Harvard in 1899. Historians believe he went to Paris intending to study philosophy, but by 1900 he had returned to New York City. After returning to America, Herbert Croly worked as an editor for an architectural magazine, The Architectural Record, from 1900 to 1906.

Cornish Art Colony

After Croly had first come to Cornish, a thriving art colony, he decided to build a house there, designed by Charles A. Platt, a prominent architect and friend of Croly through his magazine (Architectural Record). It was typical of Platt's early style, done in an Italianate style with formal gardens and a sweeping view of Mt. Ascutney, a famous feature of many colony homes.[6]

It was in Cornish that Croly worked on a new project: The Promise of American Life, a political book he hoped would provide guidance for Americans during the transition from an agrarian to an industrialized society. When it published in 1909, Croly became a leading political thinker and prominent figure in the progressive movement.[2]

In addition to Platt, Croly was good friends with judge Learned Hand, whose family vacationed in Cornish at their estate "Low Court," and Louis Shipman a Harvard classmate and playwright who accompanied Croly on his first visit to the colony.[6] Shipman and his wife Ellen had a home in the neighboring town of Plainfield. It is near there that Croly and the Shipman' are buried, in the Gilkey Cemetery just north of the village.

The Promise of American Life

In The Promise of American Life, Herbert Croly set out his argument for a progressive-liberal government in twentieth-century America. He saw democracy as the defining American trait and described democracy not as a government devoted to equal rights but as one with the aim of “bestowing a share of the responsibility and the benefits, derived from political economic association, upon the whole community.”[7]:194 He returned to Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton as representatives of the two main schools of American political thought. Croly famously admitted, “I shall not disguise the fact that on the whole my own preferences are on the side of Hamilton rather than of Jefferson.”[7]:29

Despite his preference for Hamilton, Croly believed there were some good aspects about Jefferson’s philosophy on government. He wrote, “Jefferson was filled with a sincere, indiscriminate, and unlimited faith in the American people.”[7]:42–43 However, Croly viewed Jeffersonian democracy as “tantamount to extreme individualism,”[7]:48–49 suitable only for pre-Civil War America when the ideal Americans were pioneers pursuing individual wealth.[2] Croly’s largest contribution to American political thought was to synthesize the two thinkers into one theory on government: Jefferson’s strong democracy achieved through Hamilton’s strong national government.[4]


Croly argued that when America shifted from an agrarian economy to an industrial one, Jefferson’s vision was no longer realistic for America.[4] Instead, Croly turned to Alexander Hamilton’s theory of big national government. Government, according to Croly, could no longer be content with protecting negative rights; it needed to actively promote the welfare of its citizens. Croly proposed a three-pronged program: the nationalization of large corporations, the strengthening of labor unions, and a strong central government.[5]

Croly firmly believed that labor unions were “the most effective machinery which has yet been forged for the economic and social amelioration of the laboring class.”[7]:387 He wanted unions to have the right to negotiate contracts to ensure companies would only hire union workers. Unlike other progressives, Croly did not want the government to wage war against large corporations. He wanted the Sherman Anti-Trust Act repealed and replaced with a national incorporation act that would regulate and, if necessary, nationalize corporations.[5] Croly had little sympathy for non-union workers and small businesses, declaring that “Whenever the small competitor of the large corporation is unable to keep his head above water, he should be allowed to drown.”[7]:359

Croly did not support economic equality or large disparities in wealth. He believed it was the responsibility of a powerful central government to practice “constructive discrimination” on behalf of the poor.[7]:193 Croly’s plan included a federal inheritance rate of 20%, not the individual income tax that other progressive reformers wanted.[5] Croly argued that compensation for work should be adjusted to “the needs of a normal and wholesome life”[7]:417—an idea along the lines of the Utopian author Edward Bellamy.[5]


Croly called for the adoption of Hamiltonian means to achieve Jeffersonian ends. To achieve this synthesis, however, Croly rejected Hamilton's arguments for institutional checks on a pure national democracy, and Jefferson's arguments for limited government. Croly rejected these limits because he saw them as too closely tied to the doctrine of individual rights. Croly wanted to transcend the doctrine of individual rights in order to create a national political community, one that would be forged by a strong but democratic national government. However, Croly failed to see the connection between Jefferson's belief in democracy and his belief in limited government, and he failed to see the connection between Hamilton's belief in a strong national government and his call for institutional checks on democracy. Thus, although many American reform movements have their roots in the rhetoric of Croly's progressivism, to be effective they have had to accommodate the principles of liberal individualism that Croly wished to eradicate.[8]

Croly's Elite

Croly’s strong central government needed strong individuals to lead it. His ideal was Abraham Lincoln, a person who was “something of a saint and something of a hero”[7]:454 and understood that democracy in America was greater than "rights"; it was a national ideal. Croly, like Hamilton, had a faith in the powerful few and sincerely believed that those few would remain democratic. His search for a great American leader became an obsession that was never satisfied. Croly’s notion of the elite was challenged by civil libertarians who believed Croly’s powerful few would lead to a totalitarian state.[5] In the telling of Fred Siegel of the conservative Manhattan Institute, “For Croly, businessmen and their allies – the jack-of-all-trades latter-day Jeffersonians – were blocking the path to the bright future he envisioned for the specialists of the rising professional classes.”[9]


The Promise of American Life has received criticism from a number of angles. Many feared the underlying tones of totalitarianism or fascism. Others worried that Croly’s plan would make America socialist—a criticism Croly foresaw in his book and attempted to combat by labeling his government as nationalistic rather than socialistic. Even those who believed Croly’s government could be democratic had concerns that Croly’s vision for the country was clouded by a Republican prejudice. His writing contained several criticisms of the Democrats but almost none of the Republicans.[5]

Croly’s book was also criticized for its lack of national focus. It focused almost entirely on problems that were of interest to those living in cities but not to rural America. The tariff, conservation, currency, banking, and agriculture all were only mentioned in passing, if at all. Connected to that was an argument that Croly’s plans were unrealistic and detached from the reality that many Americans were living.[5]

By Croly’s death in 1930, only 7,500 copies of The Promise of American Life had been sold.[10]

After The Promise of American Life

The publication of The Promise of American Life in 1909 earned Croly a lot of publicity and the attention of some important people, including Dan Hanna, Mark Hanna’s son. From 1911-1912, Croly worked on a biography of Hanna: Marcus Alonzo Hanna: His Life and Work. Croly needed a source of income at the time, and Dan Hanna paid Croly to write the book but reserved the right to make changes before it was published. The book had soaring praise for Mark Hanna, a conservative who saw the role of government very differently from Croly.[2]

The Promise of American Life also attracted the attention of Roosevelt; they became friends. When Roosevelt ran for president in 1912 as a candidate for the Bull Moose party, he used the slogan "New Nationalism". There is some dispute among historians whether Roosevelt took the slogan directly from The Promise of American Life or if he had already developed the concept himself. Either way, Croly was credited at the time as the author.[2]

Croly was drawn into presidential politics during the election of 1912. Croly (representing Roosevelt) took the national stage against Louis Brandeis (representing Woodrow Wilson) on the issue of trusts. Brandeis and Wilson took the side of small business, arguing that competition and equal opportunity for small businesses was at the heart of American democracy. They painted Roosevelt as the candidate of big business, and Croly was charged with arguing that big business, when properly regulated, was better for national unity and prosperity because it was efficient without the greed he associated with small business competition.[2]

Wilson easily defeated Roosevelt and won the election. In early 1913, Croly and his wife moved to Washington, D.C. where Croly started on his next project, the book, Progressive Democracy.[2]

Progressive Democracy

In Progressive Democracy, published in 1915, Croly picked up where The Promise of American Life left off, shifting his focus to economic democracy and the issue of power for workers in large corporations. He wrote that his goal was to explain “the needs and requirements of a genuinely popular system of representative government.”[11]:327 For Croly, those needs and requirements included information on major political issues available to the public, energetic public debate and discussion, and the pursuit of a common voice in society.[4]

A main concern of Croly’s in Progressive Democracy was that the United States Constitution was fundamentally inconsistent with American democratic aspirations. He perceived the Constitution as a “living Constitution,” capable in his mind of becoming something other than the Founding Fathers intended.[12]

Croly’s alternative to interpreting the Constitution as “living” was to eliminate it and start over, or at least substantially alter it. The basis for his argument was the belief that for progressive democracy to be successful it needed to move quickly, and the Constitution did not accommodate that. Reforms were needed that could not wait for the approval of Congress or state legislatures.[12]

In Progressive Democracy, Croly expressed hope that reformers in 1915 were different enough from reformers of the past that they could make real differences in American politics. His call for a more progressive democracy hinged on reforming social and economic systems. He accused Woodrow Wilson's administration of returning the country to Jeffersonian individualism, the opposite of where he thought the country should be going. He ended by appealing to Americans’ cultural and social instincts to improve their situation.[11]

The New Republic

After Woodrow Wilson won the presidential election in 1912, Harper’s Weekly became the leading magazine for Progressive party politics. Herbert Croly believed the magazine took the wrong stance on many issues and endeavored to start a magazine of his own. In 1914, Willard Straight and his wife Dorothy Payne Whitney provided the financing for Croly's magazine, The New Republic.[2]

Croly, Walter Lippmann, and Walter Weyl were the co-founders of The New Republic. The first issue appeared on November 7, 1914.[5] TNR’s articles represented the politics of its founders, and by 1915 the journal had attracted an audience of about 15,000, mainly young intellectuals in New York.[2]

Theodore Roosevelt was the star of many early pieces in TNR, but by December 1914, Roosevelt had a falling out with Croly, Lippmann, and Weyl. The editors chastised Roosevelt for an attack on Wilson’s policy in Mexico. In retaliation, Roosevelt accused the editors of personal disloyalty and ended relations with them, becoming openly hostile toward Croly and the others.[2]

World War I presented the first real policy challenge. Though they had been criticizing various Wilsonian strategies in domestic politics, the editors were hesitant to take a strong position on the war. Croly’s pragmatism set the magazine’s tone early, not blaming Germany but not openly supporting the Allies either. In the summer of 1915, TNR endorsed Norman Angell’s notion of a limited war, using techniques like seizing German assets rather than all-out war.[5]

By late 1916, Croly had come around to some of Wilson’s policies and used TNR to declare his support of Wilson in the 1916 election. However, Croly became disillusioned toward the end of World War I and finally abandoned his loyalty to Wilson in 1918.[5]

The period from 1918-1921 was difficult for TNR, and by 1921, Croly was the only original member of The New Republic that remained. Willard Straight died of influenza and pneumonia in 1918 at the age of 38, and three weeks later Randolph Bourne, a contributor to TNR from the beginning, died of the same influenza epidemic at age 32.[2] Theodore Roosevelt died at the age of 61 only one month later,[2] followed by Walter Weyl who died in 1919 at age 46.[5] Walter Lippmann left the magazine in 1921 on bad terms with Croly. Around the same time, Judge Learned Hand—one of Croly’s closest friends—broke off their friendship over differences between them on the Treaty of Versailles. Although the friendship somewhat healed years later, it was a devastating loss to Croly.[2]

In 1924 The New Republic filed for bankruptcy. Though it reorganized and began publishing again, the original spirit of the magazine would not return. Croly remained a contributor, however, until his death in 1930.[2]

Later life and death

Though Croly eventually joined calls for American involvement in World War I, he became pessimistic and frustrated by the costs of war. In late 1917 and 1918, Croly began questioning his own beliefs about nationalism and democracy. The Treaty of Versailles delivered a severe blow to Croly’s progressive spirit, causing him to declare that the Paris Peace Conference was the apocalypse of liberalism.[5]

The vicious treatment of unions during the labor movements in the 1920s was difficult for Croly, a big union supporter. The issue of prohibition put Croly’s beliefs about the role of the national government to the test. He ultimately adopted the policy Louis Brandeis suggested to him—that the federal government be responsible for interstate trafficking of alcohol but that states take responsibility for internal enforcement. But, for Croly, the challenge of how to handle prohibition was the final straw in breaking his faith in his old vision of democracy.[2]

In 1920, Croly worked on another book called The Breach in Civilization. It was a reflection on the role of religion in the future. The result was a compilation of the ideals Croly once held but by then believed were unrealistic positions. He wrote that legislation as a solution for social issues was unimportant, and abandoned his own core philosophy that central government could create human amelioration. He condemned progressivism as a failure. As the book was on its way to the publisher, Felix Frankfurter persuaded Croly to withdraw the manuscript. It was never published, and only part of the text remains today.[2]

Croly’s steady mental and physical decline in the 1920s culminated in a massive stroke in 1928. Though he survived, movement of the right side of his body was impaired and his ability to speak was seriously affected. For 20 painful months Croly and his wife worked toward his recovery, but it was too much to overcome. Herbert Croly died on May 17, 1930, and was buried in Plainfield, New Hampshire, alongside his wife Louise.[13]

The New Deal

Herbert Croly died before the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his New Deal. However, historians commonly consider the New Deal to be a program that embodied many of Croly’s most central beliefs and ideas.[4] Whether or not Franklin Delano Roosevelt was directly influenced by Croly’s writings is debated, but many of Croly’s visions for how government should operate are tenets of the New Deal.[2]

Further reading

  • Dexter, Byron. "Herbert Croly and the Promise of American Life," Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 70, No. 2 (Jun., 1955), pp. 197–218 in JSTOR
  • Jaenicke, Douglas Walter. "Herbert Croly, Progressive Ideology, and the FTC Act," Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 93, No. 3 (Autumn, 1978), pp. 471–493 in JSTOR
  • Katz, Claudio J. "Syndicalist Liberalism: the Normative Economics of Herbert Croly." History of Political Thought 2001 22(4): 669-702
  • Stettner, Edward A. Shaping Modern Liberalism: Herbert Croly and Progressive Thought (1993) excerpt and text search


  • Croly, Herbert. The Promise of American Life (1909) full text online
  • Croly, Herbert. Progressive Democracy (1914) full text online
  • Croly, Herbert. Marcus Alonso Hanna: His Life and Work full text online(1912), favorable biography of the leading conservative politician
  • Croly, Herbert. "The Effect on American Institutions of a Powerful Military and Naval Establishment," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Vol. 66, (July 1916), pp. 157–172 in JSTOR
  • Croly, Herbert. "State Political Reorganization," Proceedings of the American Political Science Association, Vol. 8, Eighth Annual Meeting (1911), pp. 122–135 in JSTOR
  • Croly, Herbert David, 1869-1930. Religion in life : typescript, 19--. MS Am 1291. Houghton Library, Harvard University.


  1. ^ The House of Truth: A Washington Political Salon and the Foundations of American Liberalism, "A lifelong Republican and Roosevelt supporter, Croly had started the magazine partly as a counterweight to Hapgood's pro-Wilson Harper's Weekly........"
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u D. W. Levy (1985). Herbert Croly of the New Republic: the Life and Thought of an American Progressive. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-04725-1.
  3. ^ Croly, Herbert (2014). The Promise of American Life: Updated Edition. Princeton University Press. p. 237.
  4. ^ a b c d e Kevin C. O'Leary (1994). "Herbert Croly and progressive democracy". Polity. 26 (4): 533–552. JSTOR 3235094.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m C. Forcey (1961). The Crossroads of Liberalism; Croly, Weyl, Lippmann, and the Progressive Era, 1900–1925. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  6. ^ a b Mausolf, Lisa (November 1999). "Croly-Newbold House". Connecticut River Joint Commission. Retrieved March 2016. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i H. Croly (1911). The Promise of American Life. New York, NY: The Macmillan Company.
  8. ^ David K. Nichols (1987). "The promise of progressivism: Herbert Croly and the progressive rejection of individual rights". Publius. 17 (2): 27–39.
  9. ^ Siegel, Fred (2013). The Revolt Against the Masses. New York: Encounter Books, p. 12.
  10. ^ F. Frankfurter. Herbert Croly [and American Political Opinion], 1869–1930.
  11. ^ a b H. Croly (1915). Progressive Democracy. New York, NY: The Macmillan Company.
  12. ^ a b S. A. Pearson, Jr. (1998). "Herbert Croly and liberal democracy". Society. 35 (5): 62–71.
  13. ^ "Herbert Croly". Find a Grave. Find a Grave. Aug 24, 2006. Retrieved March 2016. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)

External links

1909 in literature

This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1909.

1920 United States presidential election in Utah

The 1920 United States presidential election in Utah took place on November 2, 1920. All contemporary forty-eight states took part, and Utah voters selected four electors to the Electoral College, who voted for president and vice president. This was the first presidential election to feature as a distinct voting unit Daggett County, the newest and least populous of Utah's current twenty-nine counties.

In 1916, Utah had turned strongly Democratic as a result of a powerful "peace vote" for incumbent President Woodrow Wilson; however, by the beginning of 1920 skyrocketing inflation and Wilson's focus upon his proposed League of Nations at the expense of domestic policy had helped make the incumbent President very unpopular – besides which Wilson also had major health problems that had left First Lady Edith effectively running the nation. Political unrest seen in the Palmer Raids and the "Red Scare" further added to the unpopularity of the Democratic Party, since this global political turmoil produced considerable fear of alien revolutionaries invading the country. Demand in the West for exclusion of Asian immigrants became even stronger than it had been before.All these factors combined to produce a national landslide, with a swing of almost twenty-nine percentage points to the Republicans vis-à-vis the election of 1916. Utah followed the national trend closely: whereas Wilson had won the state by twenty percentage points in 1916 and had clean-swept the twenty-eight extant counties, in 1920 Harding by campaigning on a "return to normalcy" carried every county in the Beehive State with a swing of thirty-seven percentage points. This was the first time Washington County had ever been carried by the Republican nominee. Despite this large swing, Utah in 1920 still voted 9.08 percentage points more Democratic than the nation at-large.On the ballot in Utah in 1920 in addition to the two major party candidates were Utah native Parley P. Christensen of the "Farmer-Labor" Party, and imprisoned Socialist candidate Eugene Debs in his fifth and final run for president. Christensen was supported by some unionists and veterans of Theodore Roosevelt's 1912 presidential campaign. Despite the endorsement of Herbert Croly, Christensen received only one percent of the nationwide vote, and although he finished ahead of Cox in numerous counties in Washington State and South Dakota, Parley could only obtain three percent in his home state, whilst Debs accomplished even less.

1930 in literature

This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1930.

Church of Humanity

Church of Humanity was a positivist church in England influenced and inspired by Auguste Comte's religion of humanity in France. It also had a branch or variant in New York City. Richard Congreve of the London Positivist Society was important to the founding of the English church in 1878. Despite being relatively small the church had several notable members and ex-members. For example, Anna Haycraft was raised in the "Church of Humanity" before converting to Catholicism.

The New York City version originates with English immigrant Henry Edger. In 1854 he decided to dedicate himself to the "positive faith", but actual organization of the movement did not come for another decade. In 1869 an organization formed with David Goodman Croly as a leading member. Croly strongly believed in the religious element of Comtism, but was somewhat limited in evangelizing for it. By the 1870s the positivist organization led to an American version of the "Church of Humanity." This was largely modeled on the English church. Like the English version it wasn't atheistic and had sermons and sacramental rites. At times the services included readings from conventional religious works like the Book of Isaiah. It was not as significant as the church in England, but did include several educated people unrelated to Croly. Nevertheless, one of the most noted people raised and baptized in the New York "Church of Humanity" was David Croly's son Herbert Croly.


Croly is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

David Goodman Croly (1829–1889), American journalist

George Croly (1780–1860), Irish poet, writer, historian and theologian

Herbert Croly (1869–1930), American political writer and magazine founder

Jane Cunningham Croly (1829–1901), American writer

David Goodman Croly

David Goodman Croly (November 3, 1829 – April 29, 1889) was an American journalist, born in New York City and educated at New York University. He was associated with the Evening Post and the Herald (1854–58), and then became an editor and subsequently the managing editor of the World. He married Jane Cunningham, known as "Jennie June", in 1856. In 1863, during the Civil War, he co-authored the anonymous pamphlet Miscegenation, which tried to discredit the abolitionist movement and the Lincoln Administration by playing on racist fears common among whites. The anonymous author of the pamphlet claimed to be an Abolitionist in favour of promoting the intermarriage of whites and blacks, a taboo practice that at the time was seen as a threat to white supremacy. The pamphlet coined the term miscegenation for the intermixing of races.From 1870 to 1873, Croly published a journal called Modern Thinker which served as a vehicle for the positivist and Spencerian positions of himself and a small circle of colleagues, including John Humphrey Noyes. In 1872, Croly predicted the Panic of 1873, along with the failures of Jay Cooke & Co. and the Northern Pacific Railroad. From 1873 to 1878 he was editor of the Daily Graphic.

Croly's published works include Seymour and Blair: Their Lives and Services (1868), about the 19th century politicians Horatio Seymour and Montgomery Blair (which included an appendix containing a "History of Reconstruction"); and a Primer of Positivism (1876). This refers to Comtean positivism as he was a founding figure in the New York City branch of the Church of Humanity and referred to the "faith" as "the only true church." Glimpses of the future : suggestions as to the drift of things (1888) was an early instance of futurology.David Goodman Croly was the father of the writer Herbert Croly, co-founder of The New Republic magazine.

Edgar Mathews

Edgar Asahel Mathews (September 8, 1866 – December 31, 1946) was an architect who worked in the Bay Area of California, particularly in San Francisco. He primarily designed houses but was also responsible for some Christian Science churches and commercial and government buildings.

Efficiency Movement

The Efficiency Movement was a major movement in the United States, Britain and other industrial nations in the early 20th century that sought to identify and eliminate waste in all areas of the economy and society, and to develop and implement best practices. The concept covered mechanical, economic, social, and personal improvement. The quest for efficiency promised effective, dynamic management rewarded by growth.As a result of the influence of an early proponent, it is more often known as Taylorism.

Herbert (given name)

Herbert is a Germanic given name, from harja- "army" and beraht "bright". See also Heribert, another given name with the same roots.

Jane Cunningham Croly

Jane Cunningham Croly (December 19, 1829 – December 23, 1901) was an American author and journalist, better known by her pseudonym, Jennie June. She was a pioneer author and editor of women's columns in leading newspapers and magazines in New York. She founded the Sorosis club for women in New York in 1868 and in 1889 expanded it nationwide to the General Federation of Women's Clubs. She also founded the Woman's Press Club of New York City.

John Morton Blum

John Morton Blum (; April 29, 1921 in New York City – October 17, 2011 in North Branford, Connecticut) was an American historian, active from 1948 to 1991. He was a specialist in 20th-century American political history, and was a senior advisor to Yale officials.

Liberalism in the United States

Liberalism in the United States is a broad political philosophy centered on what many see as the unalienable rights of the individual. The fundamental liberal ideals of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion for all belief systems, and the separation of church and state, right to due process, and equality under the law are widely accepted as a common foundation across the spectrum of liberal thought.

Modern liberalism in the United States includes issues such as same-sex marriage, reproductive and other women's rights, voting rights for all adult citizens, civil rights, environmental justice, and government protection of freedom from want. National social services such as: equal education opportunities; access to health care; and transportation infrastructure are intended to meet the responsibility to "promote the general welfare" of all citizens. Some American liberals, who call themselves classical liberals, fiscal conservatives, or libertarians, support fundamental liberal ideals but disagree with modern liberal thought, holding that economic freedom is more important than equality, and that providing for the general welfare exceeds the legitimate role of government.Since the 1930s, without a qualifier the term "liberalism" in the United States usually refers to "modern liberalism", a political philosophy exemplified by Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal and, later, Lyndon Johnson's Great Society. It is a form of social liberalism, whose accomplishments include the Works Progress Administration and the Social Security Act in 1935, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

According to Louis Hartz, liberalism in the United States differs from liberalism elsewhere in the world because America never had a resident hereditary aristocracy, and as such, avoided much of the "class warfare" that swept Europe.

New Nationalism (Theodore Roosevelt)

New Nationalism was Theodore Roosevelt's Progressive political platform during the 1912 election.

People's Power League

The People's Power League was an important Progressive organization, formed in 1892 by James William Sullivan and led by William U'Ren, that was devoted to governmental reforms in the United States in the early 20th century. Ellis Oberholtzer noted that the tradition behind the League reached back to the egalitarian Pennsylvania Constitution. Both the Pennsylvania radical and the League supported unicameral legislatures (a second house being viewed as a protection for aristocratic influences); a mechanism of rapidly replacing elected officials (in the case of the League, through recall elections; in the case of the Pennsylvanians, through annual elections and rotation in office); and a body of elected officials to launch a full-scale investigation into the government at fixed intervals (in the League's case, the People's Inspectors of Government; in Pennsylvania's case, the Council of Censors). Other radical leaders associated with the League were Will Daly, George Orton, Alfred Cridge, and E.S.J. McAllister. Its predecessor organization was the Direct Legislation League.

In addition to supporting the Initiative, the Referendum, the Short Ballot (which made more state offices subject to appointment rather than election), Recall of elected officials, and a unicameral legislature, the League also supported proportional representation via SNTV according to which every legislative district would be represented by at least two members--those receiving the most votes there--but no resident would be allowed to vote for more than one candidate. According to the PPL's "Proxy" version of SNTV, electors could vote for representatives in other districts than their own (but were still restricted to one vote overall), and those party-sponsored gubernatorial candidates who had been unsuccessful in the last election would be ex officio members of the legislature, required to represent all voters whose candidates had lost in this SNTV election. Progressive author/editor Herbert Croly of The New Republic described the People's Power League platform at length in his 1912 book Progressive Democracy. The New York Times also reported on this proposal in 1912. The League's influence dropped precipitously in Oregon subsequent to a series of failed attempts to put their plans into action via amendments to the Oregon Constitution between 1909 and 1914.

The New Republic

The New Republic is an American magazine of commentary on politics and the arts, published since 1914, with influence on American political and cultural thinking. Founded in 1914 by leaders of the progressive movement, it attempted to find a balance between a humanitarian progressivism and an intellectual scientism, ultimately discarding the latter. Through the 1980s and '90s, the magazine incorporated elements of "Third Way" neoliberalism and conservatism.In 2014, two years after Chris Hughes, a co-founder of Facebook, purchased the magazine, he ousted its editor and attempted to remake its format, operations and partisan stances, provoking the resignation of the majority of its editors and writers. In early 2016, Hughes announced he was putting the magazine up for sale, indicating the need for "new vision and leadership". It was sold in February 2016 to Win McCormack.

The Promise of American Life

The Promise of American Life is a book published by Herbert Croly, founder of The New Republic, in 1909. This book opposed aggressive unionization and supported economic planning to raise general quality of life. By Croly’s death in 1930, only 7,500 copies of The Promise of American Life had been sold. Despite this, the book was immensely influential, even influencing Theodore Roosevelt to adopt the platform of The New Nationalism after reading it.

The Techniques of Democracy

The Techniques of Democracy is a book written by Herbert Croly, founder of the magazine The New Republic. It was published in 1942 by New York City publishers Duell, Sloan and Pearce. In this book, Croly argues against both dogmatic individualism and dogmatic socialism.

Walter Weyl

Walter Edward Weyl (March 11, 1873 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – November 9, 1919 in Woodstock, New York) was a writer and speaker, an intellectual leader of the Progressive movement in the United States. As a strong nationalist, his goal was to remedy the relatively weak American national institutions with a strong state. Weyl wrote widely on issues of economics, labor, public policy, and international affairs in numerous books, articles, and editorials; he was a coeditor of the highly influential The New Republic magazine, 1914-1916. His most influential book, The New Democracy (1912) was a classic statement of democratic meliorism, revealing his path to a future of progress and modernization based on middle class values, aspirations and brain work. It articulated the general mood:

"America to-day is in a somber, soul-questioning mood. We are in a period of clamor, of bewilderment, of an almost tremulous unrest. We are hastily revising all our social conceptions.... We are profoundly disenchanted with the fruits of a century of independence."

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