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Michigan Southern, the Pittsburg, Cincinnati, Chicago, and St. Louis, the Western New York and Pennsylvania, and the Pittsburg, Fort Wayne, and Chicago. The total capital represented by the 219 corporations of steam railroads reaches the enormous amount of $4,497,706,989. This is one fourth of the capital of all the steam railroads of the United States. Texas and Illinois are the only States that have a railway mileage exceeding that of Pennsylvania; but the capitalization per mile of track is much higher in Pennsylvania than in other parts of the country. Many important facts in regard to the railroads of the State may be obtained by consulting their reports, made to the secretary of internal affairs, and published by the State (205).
Street Railways.-Street railways are generally confined to boroughs and cities, and, until quite recently, the cars were moved by horse power. Electricity has banished the horse from the street railways, it being apparent that for the moving of street cars this invisible power is far superior to any other. The change from horse power to electric power has been rapid, and with this transition the limits and powers of the corporations have been extended. Yet it is evident that the General Assembly has not meant to enable them to perform the functions of steam railroads. Great efforts are now being made to put these roads to uses for which they were never intended. If street railways are to have rights of common carriers, they should be compelled to abandon the public highways, and to seek rights of way in the manner prescribed for steam railroad corporations. No street railway can be constructed within the limits of any township, borough, or city without the consent of the local authorities (203). Electric railways have already outgrown the laws which authorize their existence, and which are designed to
control their operations. As the street railways now use the highways, the tendency is to divert travel from these thoroughfares and to render them dangerous to be used for their proper purposes. No electric line outside of municipal control should be allowed to cross a steam railroad at grade. In Pennsylvania, street railways are by law allowed to carry only passengers and mail, and certain classes of freight.
Two Interesting Facts.—It is an important and interesting fact that the first railroad in America was built in Pennsylvania in 1809; antedating by seventeen years the horse railway at Quincy, Mass., incorrectly stated to have been the first railroad in the United States. In Delaware county, near the city of Chester, Thomas Lieper built, in that year, a horse railway connecting his quarry with a boat landing on Ridley creek, one mile distant.
In the National Museum at Washington, there is still preserved the famous “Stourbridge Lion,” a locomotive imported from England for the Delaware and Hudson Canal Company, by Horatio Allen, and run by him on its first trip. This was the first run made by any locomotive on the Western Continent, and was made at Honesdale, Pennsylvania, in 1829.
Canals.—The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania formerly had nearly 1,000 miles of canals, in large part constructed by the State, and lying mainly along the Delaware and Susquehanna rivers and their tributaries. Competition, due to the rapid growth of the railroad systems of the State, has made most of the canals unprofitable; those built by the State have been sold to the railroads, and are now, for the most part, abandoned. The Delaware and Hudson canal, from Honesdale to the Delaware river, and the Lehigh river canal of the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company, still transport great quantities of coal. Parts of the Susquehanna canal and the Schuylkill canal are still used to some extent.
Discuss the topic “Corporations and their relation to the State.” Has the State or the United States the constitutional right to become the owners of the telegraph and railroad lines of the country?
From what source do corporations receive their power?
Give some of the more interesting and important facts concerning the railroads of the Keystone State.
What is a common carrier? Where does the State obtain the right to restrict and regulate railroads? Discuss the Interstate Commerce Commission.
What is meant by the term eminent domain? Under what circumstances may municipal and other corporations take private property for public use?
What is cumulative voting?
Who constitute the managing body in a school district? In a township? In a borough? In a city? In a county? In the State? In the United States? In a railroad? In a bank? In an insurance company? In a church? In a college or university ?
Write a list of all the corporations that you know or have ever heard of, grouping them under the heads public and private.
State some of the general powers of a corporation. Name some of the general powers of a bank. Of a city.
What does the State constitution set forth concerning corporations?
EDUCATION: HISTORIC SKETCH
Early Ideals.—The public schools of Pennsylvania may be traced to the Frame of Government prepared by Penn in 1682. The founder of the Commonwealth was well educated and a firm believer in popular education. He provided that the Governor and Provincial Council should erect and order all public schools. Penn urged education as the means for preserving good government. “That which makes a good constitution must keep it, namely, men of wisdom and virtue, qualities that, because they do not descend with worldly inheritances, must be carefully propogated by a virtuous education of youth.”
The first General Assembly at Upland legislated upon education. Instruction was to be given in the laws, and practical civics was to be taught in the schools. The next General Assembly made education compulsory, and the county courts were directed to enforce the law. This strong and comprehensive compulsory education law is unique in early American history. Penn wished to secure to Pennsylvania a complete system of public education.
Early Schools. The oldest school in the State dates back to those early times. The William Penn Charter School of Philadelphia was established in 1689, and chartered in 1697. Continuously in operation since, it is one of the oldest schools in the United States. Not a public school such
as we know them to-day, yet in one respect it was a hundred years in advance of other schools in that it admitted both sexes on equal terms. The “Log College,” established in the wilderness by Rev. William Tennant at Neshaminy in 1726, was a center of deep and abiding interest in education as well as in religion. Eternity alone will tell how much this talented Irishman did for higher education as he gathered about him the choice young men of his time in that old log schoolhouse. “The teacher is the school alive, the inspiring force that makes scholars and men.” Through the efforts of Benjamin Franklin, a school was established in Philadelphia in 1749, and incorporated as an Academy in 1753. Soon it was chartered with college privileges, extended its courses of study to include law and medicine (1765), drew students from half the colonies, and, at the close of the. Revolution was merged in the University of Pennsylvania.
The Neighborhood Schools.--The State of Pennsylvania has no reason to be ashamed of her early efforts in education. High ideals were difficult of attainment; yet there arose in those early days, the “neighborhood schools,” the direct forerunner of the public school. Church schools and private schools were established in the eastern part of the colony, but in the western part of the State, common privations, dangers, interests, and toils gave rise to common schools. But the leaders in thought and action were a unit as to the principle that intelligence is necessary to citizenship. Neither in Pennsylvania nor elsewhere, whatever some writers may assert to the contrary, could intelligence spring suddenly out of ignorance, nor good and sufficient schools be provided for the whole people. The early schools were thoroughly republican in principle. They differed little in policy from the so-called free schools of the