“Governor Of California, Hiram Johnson”

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

download word file, 5 pages 0.0

Supreet S Bindra November 15, 2001 Bindra 1 California?s Progressive movement peaked in 1911 when Hiram Johnson took the oath of office as Governor. California was overwhelmed by corruption and public protest was rising rapidly. Hiram Johnson, supported by the Progressives, was expected to be the public advocate and clean up corruption in the state, just as he had done in San Francisco as the Mayor. By the end of Johnson?s two terms as Governor, California had become a leading example of progressivism. His administration passed a number of progressive measures, including state constitutional amendments, greater rights for women, and tighter control of the power trust. Hiram Johnson, a natural rebel, was an incredible public motivator, a power that would ultimately earn him notoriety and allow him to modify California?s corrupt government for the common man. (?Governor Hiram Johnson? and ?Hiram Johnson: California?) Hiram Johnson was born in Sacramento in 1866.

He went to the University of California at Berkeley in 1884 but later dropped out to marry Minerva ?Minne? McNeal and had two sons. Hiram Johnson was a natural rebel. He rebelled against his father, a railroad lawyer, in 1888 and eventually broke from his father?s firm in 1902. Johnson?s declamations were designed to arouse public irritation by denouncing the influence of big business. He was a great public speaker and loved using his power for change. Johnson always wanted his chance to be somebody famous. He felt that an outburst of popular resentment in modern affairs was going to give him an opportunity to fight for the people and become a hero. He had little background, intellect, or sophistication, which is the main reason he was so easily able to form a friendship with the common man. Theodore Roosevelt, the most aggressive progressive...