The author examines the social forces that shaped the thinking and actions in the 1896 Presidential campaigns of McKinley and Bryan. It was a turning-point choice was offered to the voters that Election Day and each man had vociferous and vigorous supporters. McKinley's stance was that of the Republican Party which had recognized the industrialization of a growing labor force and the implications of an increasing international trade. Bryan for the Democrats was championing the American myth of agrarian democracy and free silver. An excellent presentation of a study in contrasts.