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What Once Was Ours: The Legacy of the Indigenous Americans
"...what Black Cloud had taken away from the reservation schools, though, was the ability to read, and so he was aware of the White House Christmas ball. It was clear from his diaries that he had settled on Custer as his target weeks earlier, but that the President would be remaining in Washington through the cold December came to represent his best chance at it. Black Cloud attempted to enter the White House on Christmas Eve, but was turned away by a porter; he would sleep in the cold the next several nights, waiting for the President to emerge so he could take his chance. The President's departure back to Michigan came on a day rich with historic irony - by carriage to New Jersey Avenue Station on Capitol Hill, to take the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad service to Monroe, via a planned stop in Pittsburgh to celebrate New Years Eve with local officials - on the evening of December 29, 1890, the sixteen year anniversary to the day of the Missoula Massacre where Black Cloud had lost his family, as a boy of only nine. [1] He was old enough to remember. He ran after Custer's carriage, which moved slowly along B Street (what is today's Constitution Avenue) due to thick snow and the small cadre of Wolverine bodyguards leading and trailing the carriage, in addition to the four armed men at every corner of the vehicle. When the carriage arrived at the train station, a group of supporters was there to see the President off; a number of Democratic Congressmen and Senators, residents of Washington, a number of soldiers. Black Cloud reached the station gassed and out of breath, according to bystanders and eyewitnesses, but nevertheless made his way forward through the crowd. Custer was interrupted on his approach to the train to stop and speak to Secretary of State Thomas Bayard, who himself was soon to depart for Baltimore and then Wilmington, and his protégé and successor in the Senate, George Gray of Delaware. The Wolverines had, as was customary, stepped back to give the President space to speak to others, and at that moment were getting ready to board the train. As the President moved out of the waiting hall and onto the platform, he shook hands with Bayard, and his wife happily embraced the wives of the other two men. Black Cloud took this opportunity to emerge from the crowd immediately behind Custer, raise his revolver, and open fire. He was said to have shouted something, but it was lost in the noise of the train's whistle, the three shots he managed to squeeze off, the screams of bystanders and the chaos of the moment. Bayard would say in later years that he believed whatever Black Cloud roared, it was almost certainly in Sioux..."

- What Once Was Ours: The Legacy of the Indigenous Americans


[1] Also, not by coincidence, December 29 1890 is the date of OTL's Wounded Knee massacre.

(Also, props to @Darth_Kiryan for calling this correctly yesterday. Didn't want to tip my hand when the foreshadowing was thick enough as it was!)
 
The Wolverine in the White House: The Presidency of George Armstrong Custer at 100
"...the Christmas Ball nevertheless a minor success - those in attendance would cite it as one of their favorite society events in years - the First Couple were feeling excitement for the first time in months as they made preparations to depart. Libby had originally hoped to make way a day earlier, but was persuaded to stay a day later so they could depart along with the Bayards and Grays. Mary Bayard had become one of Libby's most important confidants in the last few months, and the two were nearly inseparable friends by late 1890, and they would remain lifelong friends long after their husbands had died. In her diary weeks later, Libby acknowledged that their conversation in the fateful carriage ride from the White House to New Jersey Avenue Station was one of hope and excitement; Custer laying out what he hoped to accomplish with the Liberal majority soon to be sworn in, and them debating whether he should start maneuvering now to force Hill, whom they both reviled, off the ticket in 1892. The President even suggested they hold more horseback events across the Midwest, to drum up good press, and he remarked that perhaps he had overreacted in his hiring of the Wolverines to protect him. Sunnier days were seen to be ahead.

Historians have debated Custer's decision to leave in the early evening, with a publicized send off, rather than late at night, but indeed in paying his own personal cadre of bodyguards he went further in terms of Presidential security than any President before him. 1890 was a time in which public officials, at least in the United States where the kind of radical antimonarchist, anarchist and socialist assassins who plagued Europe's royalty did not exist, could walk the streets freely without fear of assassination. Custer's guards were well accustomed to backing off of the President when he met with other politicians, and were mostly concerned with either a repeat of the Cleveland attempt during a speech or a European-style assassination in which some maniac would attempt to shoot or bomb his carriage while he was in transit, with memories of Germany's Wilhelm I or Belgium's Leopold II still fresh in the Western public (to say nothing of Russia's Alexander II, who survived the 1881 attempt on his life but was so grievously wounded he was never as functional a Tsar ever again). That someone would burst forth from a crowd and shoot the President had apparently not occurred to them. And so, as Custer wished the Bayards a happy new year and promised to call on them again soon, and as Libby hugged Mary tight and furtively said how much she would miss here, nobody expected the conspicuously Native man to step out from the crowd, with a scarf covering much of his face from the cold, raise his right arm and brandish a revolver from his sleeve. One of the Wolverines, John Mason, saw the gun moments before David Black Cloud began firing. After three shots, he had raised his own gun and shot the assassin dead with two bullets to the chest and side; a companion, George Williamson, also opened fire, missing Black Cloud entirely and killing a bystander, Ms. Emily Jones of Nantucket Massachusetts, as she accompanied her betrothed to see him off at the station. Besides the fatal shot to the head that killed Ms. Jones, Williamson's erratic fire in Black Cloud's direction wounded four other bystanders and nearly struck Senator George Gray and his wife.

The first shot to strike Custer hit him in the back of his neck, two inches below the base of the skull, and exited his throat; the bullet narrowly missed striking Bayard. The second shot hit Custer square in the back, right of the heart, lodging in his spine. The third, fired just before Black Cloud was gunned down himself, struck the staggering Custer in the shoulder, lodging there and breaching the axillary artery. The President collapsed forward onto Bayard, drenching him in blood, and both men sagged to their knees. Custer tried to exclaim something to his Secretary of State, but only managed to spit out blood as he bled profusely from his torn throat. Bayard, unable to hold Custer up, cradled him on the ground as bullets rang out around them; Libby, screaming as she realized what happened, collapsed next to her husband, taking his bloody face in her hands. As his life expired there on the platform, Custer reached up and touched Libby's face, attempting to mouth something else to her, and then perished. Estimates suggest that George Armstrong Custer, the 23rd President of the United States and the first to be assassinated, bled out in less than three minutes. He was fifty-one years old..."

- The Wolverine in the White House: The Presidency of George Armstrong Custer at 100
 
wikipedia.en - Funeral and burial of George Armstrong Custer
Funeral and burial of George Armstrong Custer
The state funeral and burial of President George Armstrong Custer occurred over the course of several weeks in January of 1891 after his assassination on December 29, 1890 by David Black Cloud at New Jersey Avenue Station in Washington, DC. Custer laid in state in the East Room of the White House in an open casket, with a cravat and silk bandanna covering the fatal throat wound, on January 5th, per the orders of his successor David B. Hill, and it was open to the public. Funeral services were held in the White House on January 6th, after which he was brought to the Capitol by a horse-drawn funeral carriage and he laid in state in the Capitol Rotunda after a ceremonial burial on January 7th and 8th, much in the same fashion as President James Blaine's funeral services three years prior. Afterwards, Custer was taken to the Baltimore and Potomac Station - wanting to avoid transporting him via the train station where he was murdered - and his funeral train ran first to Philadelphia, where his casket laid in state on January 10th in Independence Hall and the bell was wrung 23 times in honor of his being the 23rd President. From Philadelphia, Custer's funeral train traveled west slowly, escorted by the Governors and Senators of every state it passed through, back to Monroe, Michigan, where he was finally laid to rest in his hometown. In 1907, a more substantive memorial was inaugurated and he was reinterred at the George Custer Tomb and Monument in a ceremony featuring his widow Elizabeth and President William R. Hearst [1].

[1] Spoiler!
 
The Grand Consensus: The Longstreet Machine, Reconciliation and the Dawn of the 20th Century in Dixie
"...in contrast to the burgeoning agrarian radicalism represented by the National Farm Alliance and nascent labor unions in the Confederacy's industrial centers, the conservative establishment's greatest emerging challenger was somewhat closer to home and much more potent - liberal, good-government activists. The National Reform League was formally founded in January of 1891 as several "Reform Clubs" met in Charlotte, North Carolina. It was a big tent organization, and critically, it was not a political party that threatened the incumbent Democrats but rather an organ of social advocacy, with many of its members Democrats in good standing. The formation of the Reform League sharpened the conservative vs. reformist fault line within the ruling class, as now the educated, cosmopolitan mercantile wing of the Democratic Party had a structure to build off of when challenging planters for supremacy. That the League attempted to wage its battles within county committee meetings, within state conventions, in the halls of legislatures with its policy of endorsements and advocacy for friendly politicians made it a force to be reckoned with as opposed to the outsiders like the Readjusters or the Alliance that worked beyond the system. Within months, the Reform League's weekly chapter meetings were a must-attend for state legislators, county constables, mayors, and even some Governors. It appeared that their sights could even be set on influencing the autumn's Presidential and Congressional elections, with their ranks of well-organized and monied advocates for governmental reform in the wake of the economic crisis and the stagnation of public policy under President Lamar..."

- The Grand Consensus: The Longstreet Machine, Reconciliation and the Dawn of the 20th Century in Dixie


(Sort of a proto-Progressive organization, if you will)
 
The Bug That Traveled the World: The Spread and Aftermath of the 1890s Influenza Pandemic
"....the flu's second wave was perhaps even harsher than the first, and its return to St. Petersburg this time struck at the heart of Russian society. The entire imperial family fell ill; Alexander III himself nearly expired, and the reckoning deepened as his eldest two sons, Nicholas and George, were both taken by the influenza in a shock to the entire household. George had long been ill with tuberculosis and his planned trip to Japan with Nicholas had been delayed; Tsarina Maria, after recovering from the flu, was stunned that her two boys had so suddenly been taken by it, and blamed herself for not sending them on their way earlier [1]. With the death of Nicholas, though, Russia now had a new Tsarevich in Michael, the third son..."

-The Bug That Traveled the World: The Spread and Aftermath of the 1890s Influenza Pandemic


[1] Nicholas and George had really taken that trip IOTL, George had to come back early due to ill health
 
For those keeping track at home, yes, this means that Wilhelm I and Nicholas II are both dead before reaching the throne, and Napoleon IV and Leopold II's son are both alive and on the throne, which they definitely were not IOTL (to say nothing of Mexico Max still being around and kicking almost thirty years after the POD)
 
Boss Hill
"...the news of Custer's death reached Hill late that night of the 29th at Wolfert's Roost [1], and as luck would have it, one of his houseguests for the New Year's festivities was New York appellate judge Denis O'Brien, whom in only a year's time Hill would appoint to the United States Supreme Court. O'Brien delivered the oath of office to Hill in the Roost's dining room with four witnesses present, and the next morning Hill went out to speak to a large gaggle of reporters who had been camped out in front of his house all night and said,

"What unholy thing this is, for fifty-one is no age to go; no age at all for a man as virile, kind and famed as our good President Custer was. Let us not forget his career of heroism, nor his life lived entirely in service to this great Republic. Though taken from us at to young an age, not even halfway through his term, let us remember our great national martyr as he was - a shooting star, a cavalier, a prince among men!"

Such eloquence was unexpected from the typically gruff Hill, and effusive reports of his off-the-cuff eulogy quickly made their way to Capitol Hill, where a stunned Congress initially was ready to mourn hand-in-hand with the new President. Hill had other ideas, however; his public honeymoon as the new 24th President of the United States devolved almost immediately into a feud with the incoming Congress that was to be sworn in on March 4th. Democratic party bosses instantly chafed as he aggressively sought to continue his project of installing cronies throughout the patronage system; Stevenson was set to work as ever-more of a hatchet man than before, aggressively using Tammany tactics on Midwestern bosses who didn't fall in line. Hill proposed an expanded silver coinage to combat the deepening depression, a suggestion that was dead on arrival for many Liberals, and proposed remarkable tariff hikes, which even many Democrats balked at. Within months, "Hill vs. the Hill" would deepen tensions in Washington rather than bring the shocked nation together in the wake of Custer's slaying..."

- Boss Hill


[1] Hill's country home near Albany; not clear when OTL he bought it so we'll roll with this
 
alternatehistory.en
"...this is a pretty common one that really goes a few different ways, depending on your POD. First off - is David Black Cloud at the New Jersey Avenue Station at all on the night of the 29th? If he's not, I think we have a very different outcome than him taking his shot at Custer, but missing or only wounding him (or, god forbid - killing poor Libby!). A Custer who survives an assassination attempt vs. a Custer who just gets on his train to go home to Monroe for a few weeks to get out of the Capital are two different animals.

For one, we don't see the hideous backlash against Natives, and even some blacks and Chinese, that we saw after Custer died. We also pretty much butterfly away the political career of Adlai Stevenson and the bossism that became dominant in Democratic circles during the 1890s with him and Hill as the party's putative leaders. The Hoar Antitrust Act was a bipartisan measure, so Custer signs it like Hill did; the White Wolverine was a pretty canny and astute reader of political winds, so he probably doesn't waste months and political capital fighting Congress over a 16:1 silver ratio and an income tax that the Liberals would never pass, so the 52nd Congress probably isn't as toxic. We forget though that there was a bad recession, bordering on depression (like in the rest of the world) that the Democrats were blamed for; Custer wasn't super popular, though he wasn't the toxic figure Hill would become. He probably wouldn't have gotten that bad, he was after all a self-made celebrity who knew how to work the press unlike his bullheaded successor.

That's the broad strokes - he almost certainly loses reelection (like Hill) and then retires into political obscurity (unlike Hill), and the Cult of Custer within the Democratic Party is never built up. If the POD is a survived assassination attempt, there's probably a brief surge of popularity that fades; if not, he doesn't even get that respite. Still, retiring back to Monroe a respected figure would have been a worthy fate and probably for the better for everyone. His death, and how Democrats reacted to it all the way up into the early 1920s, really poisoned the party at a time when they were already at a big disadvantage to the Liberals..."


- WI: Custer Lived?
 
Becoming Australia: The Federation Debate and Founding of the Commonwealth
"...the shearers strike galvanized the working class across Australia; and though the strike was poorly timed and the strikers had to come to terms quickly once they ran out of food [1], it showed for the first time the power of unions Down Under. Within years, a Labor Party would be formed, to represent the burgeoning class consciousness in the colonies and unite the working people in their strange corner of the world..."

- Becoming Australia: The Federation Debate and Founding of the Commonwealth


[1] This is true!
 
"...the shearers strike galvanized the working class across Australia; and though the strike was poorly timed and the strikers had to come to terms quickly once they ran out of food [1], it showed for the first time the power of unions Down Under. Within years, a Labor Party would be formed, to represent the burgeoning class consciousness in the colonies and unite the working people in their strange corner of the world..."

- Becoming Australia: The Federation Debate and Founding of the Commonwealth


[1] This is true!
Interesting.
Look for Alfred Deakin when it comes to OTL Aussie History and Labor Party, even if you don't want to go down with the same people as OTL, he would still be an interesting focus point for you when it comes to Australian Federation and Political Parties down there.
 
Interesting.
Look for Alfred Deakin when it comes to OTL Aussie History and Labor Party, even if you don't want to go down with the same people as OTL, he would still be an interesting focus point for you when it comes to Australian Federation and Political Parties down there.

This is great stuff! I’m not so hard and fast on my loose rule in certain countries but any ideas on key figures in a country I barely know anything about are great, of course
 
Engines of Industry: The Capitalist Innovation of the Second Industrial Revolution
"...the move seemed, to Westinghouse, to be a simple one - ending the Current Wars and the escalating hostility between the companies by simply creating an alternating current trust that could actually face off with what he and his chief technician Nikola Tesla [1] viewed as the plainly inferior direct current hawked by Edison. The formation of the Westinghouse American Electric Company, or Westinghouse American, with the help of Drexel & Morgan, Wall Street's greatest corporate banking firm [2], created a massive electric firm that could face down Edison. It created space to respond to Edison's negative press towards alternating current, created a large capital inflow that allowed Westinghouse to establish a more disciplined laboratory structure in Pittsburgh for the mercurial Tesla to operate out of, and began the process of making Westinghouse the "Standard Oil" of electricity and electric manufacturing, as newspapers of the day put it..."

- Engines of Industry: The Capitalist Innovation of the Second Industrial Revolution


[1] OTL Tesla was of course a major part of Westinghouse's success with Alternating Current; and no, Tesla sticking around at Westinghouse with the improved funding from this merger/conglomerate will not lead to a techno-futuristic utopia. From what I've read/gleaned, he started running up against what is physically possible
[2] The precursor to JP Morgan, which carried the name of one of Morgan's mentors, Anthony Drexel
 
The Lion of Edinburgh: Prince Arthur, the Empire and the Twilight of the Victorian Age
"...Arthur had grown weary and frustrated with his headstrong nephew by then, though. The Prince of Wales' courtship with Helene of Orleans, forbidden from entering France due to her father, Prince Philippe, claiming the French throne, had become a political scandal at this point. The government of Lord Spencer had pledged not to involve itself in matters of the Royal Family early on, but the Red Earl confided in Arthur while hunting in Sussex during the early weeks of 1891 that the increasingly public affair was problematic for many in the Cabinet; with populist sentiment high as the post-Barings depression deepened and the British banking system continued to struggle after its collapse, a number of leading Liberals had shifted in an increasingly antimonarchist direction. Helene of Orleans was not a suitable candidate for either the aristocratic elements or the "NLF element," Spencer informed Arthur. To the gentry class, as well as the increasingly foreign-minded Joseph Chamberlain, that her father was a stubborn pretender to the French throne who was unreconciled to the merged Bonaparte-Bourbon house now ensconced in Paris created an issue diplomatically. Philippe's long residency in London was within the bounds of the acceptable treatment of exiled pretenders in those days; his closeness to the royal family was not. To the left wing of the Liberal Party, a crisis over the marriage of the Prince of Wales seemed quaint compared to the travails of the working and middle classes; as people struggled to feed their families after the crisis and a second wave of the Russian flu tore through the land, hostility to the "marriage question" for the quixotic and "odd" heir to the throne had created hostility in the press and public. Skepticism about Arthur's ward's choice in women (to say nothing of rumors of Albert Victor's homosexuality) [1] extended to Tories, who were quick to point out in purely legalistic terms that the Prince of Wales could not ascend the throne if married to a Roman Catholic under British law.

Albert Victor, of course, was a mercurial type, depressive and withdrawn for nearly two decades since the passing of his father in 1871, resentful of the expectations placed upon him and unable to be merry and indulgent with his friends on the Continent since Leopold III's unexpected accession to the throne and the similarly moody Rudolf of Austria ever-more withdrawn and irritable from the social circles of the day. In Helene he was happy for the first time; his younger brother Prince George and his mother Princess Alexandra both approved of the match, and Queen Victoria expressed qualified support after meeting Helene and hearing that the girl was open to converting to Anglicanism if it would allow the marriage to go through. Arthur, always in tune with his mother, shared her skepticism that such a move would be allowed, either by her father Philippe or the new, more conservative Pope; both were equally alarmed when Albert Victor expressed that he had considered whether renounce his succession rights to be with her..."

- The Lion of Edinburgh: Prince Arthur, the Empire and the Twilight of the Victorian Age


[1] Unfounded in my personal view, he just wasn't a man's man by the standards of the day
 
The Eaglet Takes Flight: The Reign of Napoleon IV 1874-1905
"...the marriage in the spring of 1891 of Victor Napoleon, his affable and loyal cousin, to Clementine of Belgium in Brussels created a perfect diplomatic coup for the Emperor, who viewed marriages as strategic even in the modernizing last decade of the century. The wedding was a shockingly ostentatious affair in a country where Leopold III's Garde Civique had been bludgeoning socialists just nine months earlier during the events of Bloody Brussels; even Napoleon IV was uncomfortable with the tone deafness, and he was unimpressed with what he recalled later to his mother as "a sovereign nearly prostrate before me in his worship, having made me in his mind more god than man, a standard I am now held to in his eyes which will only yield him future disappointment and resentment. I was flattered by his previous admiration; I am now profoundly uneasy with what strikes me more as idolatry." Indeed, Napoleon IV, aware that Leopold III looked up to him as a role model and even his "lost brother," suggested to him as they dined privately a "softer hand" with the working class, suggesting he move policy similar to the National Contract through the Belgian Parliament; he was amazed in later years that Leopold took his suggestion.

Clementine and Victor's marriage, for its part, [1] produced a large amount of children, seven in total, for a couple that chose to divide their time between Brussels and Paris and lived a quiet, happy life together. Their children, when in Paris, spent a great deal of time with Marie Eugenie and Eugene-Napoleon at the Imperial Household at the Tuileries; in Brussels, they were educated by the most elite teachers in Europe. They became emblematic of the burgeoning Francophilia of Leopold's court in Belgium, and in the city's culture itself. As for Victor, he was something of an unofficial ambassador; rather than representing the French state and foreign ministry, he more directly represented his cousin, whom he was closer to than his younger brother Louis, and further bound the royal houses in Paris and Brussels together, becoming the conduit through which the Tuileries directly influenced Belgian foreign, domestic and commercial policy, and in the mind of the public was the very face of French influence in the country, for better or for worse..."

- The Eaglet Takes Flight: The Reign of Napoleon IV 1874-1905


[1] Note on this - IOTL these two got married in the 1910s after twenty years of lusting for each other because Leopold II wouldn't let his daughter marry a Bonaparte. Here, Leo III stanning Nap IV so hard waves off those concerns, and after Baudouin rejects his cousin Clementine she instead elects to go for Victor Napoleon which she could not do in the early 1890s IOTL. So, because they start cranking out kids twenty years earlier, they have different kids. This will be important later...
 
Custer is dead, and he left without a substantial domestic legacy like Blaine's. I suppose it is for the best, considering that OTL Custer was something of a grandstanding fool who was not particularly competent at his job (the Battle of Little Bighorn was a series of serious blunders on his part). Meanwhile, family drama is brewing as royalty throughout the world are struggling to cope with a changing world that no longer sees them as a given. Belgium of all places looks to be the most likely to blow into pieces, though Napoleon IV is entering a rough patch with this new depression. Either way, I hope that Prince Rudolf does not kill himself.
 
Custer is dead, and he left without a substantial domestic legacy like Blaine's. I suppose it is for the best, considering that OTL Custer was something of a grandstanding fool who was not particularly competent at his job (the Battle of Little Bighorn was a series of serious blunders on his part). Meanwhile, family drama is brewing as royalty throughout the world are struggling to cope with a changing world that no longer sees them as a given. Belgium of all places looks to be the most likely to blow into pieces, though Napoleon IV is entering a rough patch with this new depression. Either way, I hope that Prince Rudolf does not kill himself.
I like the idea of alt history rhyming rather than echoing, even for Custer!

We’re past the original Mayerling point in time, so that’s thankfully for him been butterflied, but his sterility from syphilis hasn’t gone away. We’re going to be taking Rudolf in a somewhat diff direction
 
Dixieland
"...the anti-Italian pogrom in New Orleans left seven Italians dead, all lynched from trees and electric street lamps; it was one of the ugliest episodes of violence the city had seen in years, with whites whipped into a frenzy by the murder of the city's police chief, ostensibly at the hands of Italian criminals. The message seemed clear - do not cross us, for we own this city. And indeed, despite the depression, the English-descendant white aristocracy still held sway in the city government, in its cultural institutions, and on Canal Street, the thriving commercial hub of the entire Confederacy. But the violence created a rift, too, for it was one of the first big flareups of anti-Catholicism in Dixie; the French-Creole class, particularly its wealthier and influential denizens, paid notice, and as tensions slowly cooled over the weeks and months after the lynching, reform-from-within, as preached by the National Reform League, started to appeal to them. Ironically, for a movement born out of progressive Protestant liberalism, it was conservative Catholic Creoles and Cajuns who helped buffer the NRL in its early days, especially the critical and influential New Orleans chapter..."

- Dixieland
 
"...the anti-Italian pogrom in New Orleans left seven Italians dead, all lynched from trees and electric street lamps; it was one of the ugliest episodes of violence the city had seen in years, with whites whipped into a frenzy by the murder of the city's police chief, ostensibly at the hands of Italian criminals. The message seemed clear - do not cross us, for we own this city. And indeed, despite the depression, the English-descendant white aristocracy still held sway in the city government, in its cultural institutions, and on Canal Street, the thriving commercial hub of the entire Confederacy. But the violence created a rift, too, for it was one of the first big flareups of anti-Catholicism in Dixie; the French-Creole class, particularly its wealthier and influential denizens, paid notice, and as tensions slowly cooled over the weeks and months after the lynching, reform-from-within, as preached by the National Reform League, started to appeal to them. Ironically, for a movement born out of progressive Protestant liberalism, it was conservative Catholic Creoles and Cajuns who helped buffer the NRL in its early days, especially the critical and influential New Orleans chapter..."
I wonder if the fact that the NLF in Louisiana are basically being funded by the French-Creole plantocracy would make reforms in LA far more limited than in other states where there is a clearer delineation of privilege between the poor working class and the aristocrats/industrialists. Perhaps this is where your alt-Huey Long steps into the situation?
 
1890 United States census
1890 United States census

(Figures shown: Pop. 1880, Change Raw and Percentage from 1870)

New York - 6,511,322 (+1,112,216) +20.6%
Pennsylvania - 5,607,840 (+1,114,378) +24.8%
Illinois - 3,934,150 (+698,829) +21.6%
Ohio - 3,704,848 (+532,889) +16.8%
Missouri - 2,752,471 (+559,267) +25.5%
Indiana - 2,342,746 (+265,843) +12.8%
Massachusetts - 2,303,872 (+541,154) +30.7%
Michigan - 2,275,012 (+537,035) +30.9%
Iowa - 2,072,953 (+376,592) +22.2%
Wisconsin - 1,839,678 (+344,005) +23.0%
New Jersey - 1,641,483 (+231,274) +16.4%
California - 1,613,945 (+678,706) +71.2% (passed Kansas and Maryland)
Kansas - 1,521,837 (+474,461) +45.3% [1]
Minnesota - 1,440,415 (+761,294) +112.1% [1] (passed Connecticut, Maine, Maryland)
Nebraska - 1,219,141 (+721,329) +144.9% [1] (passed West Virginia, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland)
Maryland - 1,114,270 (+105,880) +10.5%
Maine - 842,893 (+67,462) +8.7%
Connecticut - 842,294 (+122,999) +17.1% (so close!)
West Virginia - 775,088 (+152,527) +24.5%
Dakota - 578,557 (+433,380) +398.5% [1] (passed Utah Territory, Delaware, DC, Vermont, Oregon, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Colorado!!)
Colorado - 455,868 (+251,351) +122.9% [1] (passed Vermont, Oregon, Rhode Island, New Hampshire)
New Hampshire - 416,983 (-39,964) +10.6%
Washington - 407,537 (+321,920) +476% [1] (passed New Mexico, Utah Territory, Delaware, DC, Vermont, Oregon, Rhode Island)
Rhode Island - 389,723 (+82,854) +27.0% (passed Vermont)
Oregon - 386,077 (+176,480) +84.2% (passed Vermont)
Vermont - 370,335 (+7,617) +2.1% [2]
District of Columbia* - 258,813 (+62,594) +31.9%
Delaware - 194,874 (+28,315) +17.0%
Utah Territory* - 228,365 (+74,894) +48.8%
New Mexico - 181,379 (+48,598) +36.6%
Montana Territory* - 180,289 (+130,773) 364.1% [1] (passed Nevada)
Idaho Territory* - 117,431 (+74,184) +171.5% [1] (passed Nevada)
Nevada - 77,024 (+9,153) +13.4% [3]
Wyoming Territory* - 69,911 (+46,490) +198.5% [1]
Alaska Territory* - 33,241 (-) -
Virgin Islands* - 29,241 (-) -

TOTAL US (including territories) - 48,698,665 (+11,197,949) +29.8%

Overall, the US grew just a hair slower in the 1880s percentage wise despite a more robust economy for the bulk of the decade, but the trends of massive growth in the West, strong growth in the industrial Midwest and slow growth in the upper Northeast outside of Massachusetts continued. Westward migration of both immigrants from Europe and South of the Ohio, and native born drew large growth, and the West Coast states continued to see substantial arrivals of Chinese laborers, to tremendous controversy in those states.

Top 10 Cities 1890:

New York - 1,721,477
Chicago - 1,205,550 (passed Philadelphia and Brooklyn)
Philadelphia - 1,203,123 (barely surpassed by Chicago)
Brooklyn - 863,447
Boston - 479,837
St. Louis - 472,259 [4]
Baltimore - 464,839
San Francisco - 379,862 [5]
Cincinnati - 302,010
Cleveland - 278,154

[1] Kind of insane how fast a lot of western and Plains states were growing back then, wasn't it?
[2] Even in alternate history, the Green Mountain state has a hard time attracting population growth (IOTL it grew by like a few dozen people between 1880 and 1890)
[3] IOTL Nevada's population actually shrank between these censuses - here, with more Western migration and steadier flow of Chinese labor, it grows, albeit not as much as some of its neighboring states
[4] IOTL surpassed Boston by 1890; here, does not
[5] Chinese immigration presents higher growth rate than OTL; still doesn't surpass any other city other than Cincy
 
I wonder if the fact that the NLF in Louisiana are basically being funded by the French-Creole plantocracy would make reforms in LA far more limited than in other states where there is a clearer delineation of privilege between the poor working class and the aristocrats/industrialists. Perhaps this is where your alt-Huey Long steps into the situation?

That's sort of going to be part of it, certainly. The particular and peculiar dynamics of the Bayou are a perfect breeding ground for Huey's coming populism (though we're still about three to four decades and a violent way away from the circumstances that produces Deep Fried Peronism)
 
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