The mauve decades, with pink trying to be purple and yellow pretending to be gold … the eighties when all was fair, and the nineties which sowed the seeds of our present discontent … the beginnings of Standard Oil and the Beef Trust, of the jungle where the four million are condemned to earn their bread in sweat shops, of the machine age and machine politics, of rackets and organized vice, of the melting pot and the confusion of universal suffrage, women’s rights and charity balls. The brownstone era was at an end. Electricity, the telephone, automobiles, cinemas, subways and ocean travel were coming into general use. Men were beginning to think in terms of plenty, to desire beauty and acquire ease. A good life was possible. Sarah Bernhardt, Duse, Irving, Booth, Barrett and Maurice Barrymore were touring the provinces. Paderewski and Patti could be heard a dozen times in the season. Sargent, Mark Twain and Carmencita had been taken up by society. We were no longer a nation of shopkeepers, of pioneers, honest Abes and scheming Yankees. We were growing, growing fast in wealth and self-esteem, preparing for a war with Spain to prove that we could hold our own against the European powers.
KeywordsIntimate Friendship European Power Great Artist Universal Suffrage Choice Friendship
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