“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!! Maria Halpin.
“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!!
“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!!
“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!!
“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!!

“Tell the Truth!” “Here It Is!!” Maria B. Halpin’s Statement!!!

[New York, 1884.]. Broadside, 31.5 x 46.5 cm, laid down on paper-board.

A rare broadside relating to President Grover Cleveland’s infamous smear campaign against Maria Halpin, a Buffalo woman he raped and impregnated; this publication vindicates the side of Halpin.

The only American President to serve two nonconsecutive terms in office, Grover Cleveland (1837–1908) was also a rapist. After courting Maria Halpin for several months, one night Cleveland raped and impregnated her. After she had his illegitimate child, Cleveland conspired to have the child taken from his mother and sent to the Buffalo Orphan Asylum. During his 1884 bid for the Presidency, Cleveland’s actions were exposed and used against him by the GOP. In response, Cleveland carried out a vicious smear campaign against Halpin, whom he slandered as an alcoholic and a whore.

Affirming Halpin to be “a decent and moral woman,” this broadside opens by referencing the incessant attacks launched against her by Democratic and Independent newspapers who sought to keep Cleveland’s name clean in the lead-up to the presidential election. Reproduced in this document is Halpin’s statement made under oath in which she denies the many statements made against her character and actions while she lived in Buffalo. Halpin notes that these statements have been accepted as true and “appear to be the defence or excuse of Grover Cleveland for his actions toward and treatment of me.” She continues: “I did not believe it possible that even Grover Cleveland could attempt to further blacken me in the eyes of the world … My life was as pure and spotless as that of any lady in the city of Buffalo.” The present broadside resolutely stands by Halpin’s side, pronouncing: “Men of America! Maria Halpin’s word is as good as Grover Cleveland’s! Women of America! Read this statement and demand that justice shall be done your sex by the retirement from public life of Grover Cleveland!!”

It is further noted that the facts in Halpin’s statement have been corroborated by scores of witnesses, and several dozen clergymen of Buffalo—here listed with their respective parishes—testify to the immoralities of Cleveland. The public is hereby encouraged to write to these clergymen: “These are the men who know all the facts concerning this ineffaceable wrong inflicted upon a defenseless woman! They are men of unimpeachable character! They are not partisans or politicians!”

Featured at the center is a facsimile of a statement prepared by W. C. Hudson and submitted to Halpin for her signature to exonerate Cleveland and to show that he was innocent and Halpin guilty. This is followed by an explanation: “the Candidate of the Democratic Party through Mr. Hudson, wanted an injured and outraged woman to sign a statement that would make her own that she was a base woman! ... A woman to be sacrificed, to the end that Mr. Cleveland shall get an office! The ‘Bayard of the Thugs!!!’” Also reproduced is an affidavit of Frederick T. Halpin, son of Maria Halpin relating to the scandal.

No copies recorded in OCLC.

REFERENCES: Lachman, Charles. Grover Cleveland’s Sex Scandal: The Most Despicable in American Political History at thedailybeast.com

CONDITION: Two tiny black ink stains, some loss to text at center-right (one word and the ends of a few words), and loss to margin at lower-right corner.

Item #5266

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