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1890 Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Story County, Iowa

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Page 78 of 460

to the seminaries, most of them would also be included, while probably less than half of the other schools may be so classed. The influence of these institutions is beyond computation, but these numbers are loaded with significance.

But there are other bodies which are of large religious importance to Iowa, distinguished from, yet dependent on the churches, and chief among these are the Young Men's Christian Association, which has grown to such proportions that it has thirteen paid general secretary offices in the State; the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, with societies to the number of 307 and 4,462 members, and that vigorous young people's association-the Society of Christian Endeavor. The Temperance Union has been a powerful factor in Iowa's prohibitory movement, and her vigorous stand for the entire separation of the temperance issue from politics, led by Mrs. Ellen J. Foster, against the national organization recently, has been an event of national note. There are other reformatory movements of various kinds.

This view may very properly close with the relative criminal condition of the State. In 1885 out of the entire population of 1,753,980, the total number of convicts in prisons were but 530, or a proportion of but thirty-three to the 100,000 persons, while the proportion of Nevada and California ran up to 228 and 182, respectively, and Illinois and Indiana were nearly double her proportion. Her rank in respect of total number in prison among the States is twenty-two, but in proportion of prisoners to population is thirty-seven. Iowa is tenth in population. This means that there are thirty-six of the sisterhood of States that have a worse criminal showing than Iowa, who heads them all in the proportion of persons over ten years of age able to read.

Page 78 of 460

© 2012 Mark Christian
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