July 9 - 1896 - William Jennings Bryan Gives the "Cross of Gold Speech"
William Jennings Bryan was a little known, populist-leaning former Representative from Nebraska when he went to the 1896 Democratic National Convention. During the debate on the platform, he gave a riveting speech criticizing the gold standard and advocating for bimetallism. This not only added a strong plank in favor of bimetallism onto the platform, but also made Bryan the Democratic Nominee for President in 1896. Although the "Cross of Gold" speech is extremely famous, Bryan would lose the election and the gold standard would remain in place.