Campus News


UGA historians and Georgia Tech data scientists tracked what “going viral” was like 120 years ago.

The researchers looked at the spread of presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech at the 1896 Democratic Convention, in which he called for a currency based on silver instead of gold.

Using U.S. News Map, a database of more than 10 million newspapers, the researchers were able to track how Bryan’s ideas spread in the U.S.

“We know now that the structure of networks impacts information movement,” said Claudio Saunt, Richard B. Russell Professor of History in UGA’s Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, in a Washington Post article.