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AMERICAN RAILROADS IN 1926.

The year 1926 marked another milestone in the creation of a railroad plant superior to anything which the United States has ever known. This was the fourth successive year in which railroads laid more than 2,500,000 tons of new rails of the heaviest character. A large part of the $431,664,700 of railroad securities sold during the year were expended a tracks, yards and terminals.

During the week ending Oct. 30 the American alroads loaded and moved 1,216,432 cars of freight, creeding the previous high record of 1925 of 1,124,36 cars of freight loaded in the week ending Aug. Higher operating efficiency, according to the Committee on Public Relations of the Eastern Railda, made possible the handling of this tremendous alume of freight with practically no more cars and considerably fewer locomotives than were in ervice five years ago.

The net operating income of the Nation's carriers the first nine months totaled $887,905,919 as gainst $798,030,839 during the first nine months

of 1925.

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The aggregate amount of railroad earnings during 1926 exceeded all previous years. The rate of return on investment, however, was considerably below 1926 and many previous years. Cash divdends in 1926 approximated $355,000,000 as against $340,000,000 in 1925, and around $320,000,000 1924. The first nine months of 1926 showed a return of 5.21 per cent. on the property investment accounts of the railroads as against 4.83 per cent. 1925; 4.33 per cent. for 1924: 4.48 per cent. 1923; 3.61 per cent. for 1922; and 2.92 per cent. for 1921. The experience of many years indicates that adaste and efficient transportation requires the restment of $4 in fixed property for every $1 arested in rolling stock. It is relatively easy to e new capital for the purchase of rolling stock, equipment trust certificates constitute a highly referred class of investment. Expenditures on ed property, however, can be financed only out of capital raised from the sale of bonds or stock, from a surplus of earnings over fixed charges and dividends. Such improvements are more difficult to finance and much more responsive to economic and financial conditions.

For almost a decade new capital expenditures of the railroads have come from bonds, equipment Trust certificates and earnings. Practically no new stock of any importance has been sold. As a result, more than half of railroad capital is in obligations bearing a fixed rate of interest. Considerably less than half now consists of partners' capital (stock) which assumes all the hazards of the business. The future of the railroads requires that this lack of balance be adjustea. To remain in a healthy conaltion at least 50 per cent. of the capital of the ailroad industry should be contributed by share Bolders. The hope of the railroads is that 1927 will offer the opportunity of making some progress toward this end.

IMPROVED ROLLING STOCK. The American railroads enter 1927 in the best physical condition of their history. Freight cars in seed of repair now average less than 7 per cent. of the total railroad ownership, and locomotives currently in need of repair now average below 15 per cent. The speed and certainty of railroad movement was never so great.

Six years ago the railroads set as their goal a movement of the cars actually in motion which spread over the entire balance of the car supply hot in movement-would nevertheless represent aa average of thirty miles a day for all cars. In September, 1926, this figure was thirty-two and one-half miles, and the average daily car movement for the year was at least two miles above the highest previous record. At the same time, loss and damage to goods in transit was being further reduced. This reduction for the first half of 1926 amounted to 6.2 per cent. The substantial reductions were in loss and damage resulting from defective equipment or delay in transit. This evidences the fact that goods shipped were being handled in better shape than ever before.

During the first nine months of 1926 there were 85.383 new freight cars and 1,664 new locomotives put in service. On Oct. 1, 1926, the railroads had on oraer 16,846 freight cars and 443 locomotives. The installations of new freight cars in the first nine months were 28,432 less than in the same period of 1925. Installations of new locomotives, however, outnumbered by 322 installations in the same period of 1925. An equal or greater number of old cars and locomotives were retired as the new cars and locomotives were installed.

Although the traffic handled broke all previous records, it was taken care of with ease with practically no more cars and considerably fewer locoThe motives than were in service five years ago. peak movement of the year follows: Sept. 18-Cars 1,185,524; Oct. 9-1,184,862; Oct. 16-1,210,163; loadings, 1.187,011; Sept. 25-1,182,940; Oct. 2Oct. 23-1,209,043; Oct. 30-1,216,432; and Nov. 6-1,137,210.

These eight successive weeks averaged 1,189,148 carloads. At the beginning of this movement, Sept. 15, the railroads had 137,377 surplus cars, and at the end, Nov. 8, they had 88,130 surplus cars available for further traffic if needed. During the surplus locomotives in good order and ready for entire movement they never had less than 4,000

service.

substantial increase in operating efficiency which This performance may stand as evidence of that was characterized in the 1926 report of the Secretary of Commerce as constituting "probably the since the war." most outstanding single industrial accomplishment

capital expenditures in 1926 approximating $875,In producing this result the railroads made new clusive they approximate $5,196,000,000. 000,000. For the seven years 1920 to 1926 in

Railway passenger travel is apparently nearing a point of equilibrium. Long distance travel is slowly increasing. More of this travel uses Pullman service than ever before. Owing to the reluctance of State regulatory bodies to consent to a reduction in local passenger service, the carriers have not been able to reduce this service in proportion to the revenues produced. Thus, during 1925 railroad passenger service, including mail and operating income of the railroads. express, produced only one-eleventh of the net The figures for 1926 are not yet available, but it seems probable twelfth or that passenger service this year produced oneincome of railroads. one-thirteenth of the net operating As the railroads go more extensively into the operation of motor busses, however, it is expected that the offering of this alnumber of their losing local passenger trains. ternative service will enable them to reduce the

CONSOLIDATIONS.

Testimony of Chairman Eastman of the Interstate Commerce Commission before the Senate Jan. 22, 1926, was to the effect that possible economies of great consolidations had been exaggerated; were not likely to bring about a substantial general reduction in freight rates, because economy and efficiency of operation were much more than a matter of size; and "no one knows how far consolidations may be carried with advantage-or, indeed, without positive disadvantage.' As result of this growing opinion the pressure toward compulsory consolidation substantially lessened. Perhaps the most notable acquisition during the year was the purchase of the Atlanta, Birmingham and Atlantic by the Atlantic Coast Line.

a

On March 2, 1926, the Interstate Commerce Commission handed down its decision denying, by 7 to 1 vote, the application of the Van Sweringen interests for authority to unify, under control of the New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railway (the proposed new company), the present New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad, the Erie Railroad, the Pere Marquette Railway, the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway, and the Hocking Valley Railway. Rejection was based chiefly on the proposed financial structure which denied voting control to the preferred stockholders and placed control in the hands of a "powerful few." plan is undergoing adjustment and probably will be presented again in an amended form.

This

Hearings on the application of the Kansas City Southern Railway for authority to acquire control of the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad and of the latter to acquire control of the St. Louis Southwestern Railway, which has been held before the Interstate Commerce Commission, were brought to a close on Nov. 13, 1926.

The commission on Oct. 11, 1926, denied the proposed acquisition by Norfolk and Western Railway of control of the railroad of the Virginian Railway by lease. Although these railroads serve

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RAILROAD LABOR COSTS AND OPERATING REVENUES.

The total labor costs and operating revenues for ten years of the Class A railroads (those having annual operating revenues above $1,000,000), as Average

compiled by the Bureau of Railway Economies from the records of the Interstate Commerce Commission, are as follows:

Yearly Total Labor Cost. Gross Operating Net Operating
Revenue.

Income.

Return on Property

CALENDAR YEAR.

1916

1917

1918.

1919.

1920.

1921.

1922.

1923

Wage.

Value.

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1924. 1925..

1.637

different coal fields, they substantially parallel each other and each has its Eastern terminus at Norfolk, Va.

To date the commission has set final valuations on 394 carriers. The commission served 840 tentative valuation reports up to June 30, 1926, of which 302 became final by decision and order up to that date. The valuations cover 151,642 miles of road, or 62.1 per cent. of the railroad mileage under valuation.

The 5 per cent. general increase in freight rates sought by the Western railroads was denied in an opinion of the Interstate Commerce Commission July 17, 1926, stating that it is quite clear from the evidence that so far as the major portion of the Western district is concerned, no financial emergency exists." The commission at the same time denied the petition of secuity holders of Northwestern carriers for an additional 15 per cent. horizontal increase in rates in Western trunk line territory.

The commission also held that the earnings of the roads in the West as a whole had not been such as to warrant at this time a general downward revision of rates on farm products, including livestock, and held to be unnecessary the creation of separate rate groups which had been proposed for the Southwest, taking in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas, Southern Kansas, Missouri south of the Missouri River, and that part of Louisiana west of the Mississippi.

BOARD OF MEDIATION SET UP. President Coolidge on May 20, 1926, signed the Watson-Parker bill, which abolishes the Railroad Labor Board established in 1920. A Board of Mediation, composed of five members-Samuel E. Winslow, Chairman; Carl Williams, Edwin P. Morrow, G. Wallace, W. Hangar and Hymel Cavies -was appointed by President Coolidge to settle disputes between employees and the carriers. This new act had been agreed upon last year by most of the railway executives and heads of the four brotherhoods. It provides in brief as follows:

1. That the railroads and employees shall establish adjustment boards to arrange disputes.

2. That the President shall appoint, with the consent of the Senate, a board or mediation of five persons, none of whom has a pecuniary interest on either side, to intervene when the adjustment boards fail.

3. That boards of arbitration shall be created when both parties consent to arbitration.

4. That when the above methods fail the Board of Mediation shall notify the President, who may appoint an emergency board to investigate and report to him within thirty days. For thirty days alter the report has been made there shall be no change in the conditions of the dispute except by agreement of the two parties concerned.

Effective Oct. 16, 1926, the Pennsylvania Railroad advanced the wages of its shopmen (about 43,000 mechanics, helpers and apprentices) 3 cents an hour. Among other increases in shopmen's wages were those announced by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad of 2 cents an hour and time and one-half for overtime, by the Chicago and Alton Railroad of 1% cents per hour (effective July 15, 1926), and by the Norfolk and Southern Railroad of 2 cents an hour. The Wabash Railroad granted an Increase of 2 cents an hour to 3,500 employees in the mechanical department, effective Dec. 1. 1926.

6,122,509,856

5.09%

trainmen and conductors amount to between $1 and $1.64 per day, depending on the class of service and the class of employee. This represents an Increase of about 20 per cent. over the existing wages received by the trainmen and conductors. In October of this year the demands of trainmen, conductors and firemen of the Eastern railroads for a 20 per cent. wage increase were submitted to this board of arbitration-William D. Baldwin of New York and Edgar E. Clark of Washington, DC, as "neutral" members; E. P. Curtis of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Daniel L. Cease of Cleveland, Ohio, labor members; and Robert V. Massey, General Manager of the Pennsylvania Railroad and William A. Baldwin, Vice President of the Erle Railroad, railroad executive members. Hearings ended Nov. 10.

WINDING UP FEDERAL CONTROL During the Federal control period from Jan. 1, 1918, to Feb. 29, 1920, and the guarantee period of six months from March 1 to Aug. 31, 1920, and as a result of the financial operations called for by the Control Act of 1918, the Transportation Act of 1920 and the Act incorporating the War Finance Corporation, advances to a large amount were made to the railroads by the United States Treasury. the Director General and the War Finance Corporation on account of additions and improvements, the funding and refunding of loans and in the case of the Boston and Maine for reorganization purposes.

The Director General of Railroads (Secretary of the Treasury Mellon) reported as of Nov. 1, 1926, that out of a total $629,453,978, securities acquired by the United States Government for additions and improvements made during the period of Federal control and loans made to the railroads, $516.136,850 had been sold or redeemed, leaving $113,317.128 on hand Nov. 1, 1926. Of these $26,980,000 were bonds of the Boston and Maine, $85,822,000 were collateral notes of ten railways, $302,400 remained from equipment trust obligations and $212,728 were preferred stock.

The War Finance Corporation alding in the financing during Federal control loaned to the railroads a total of $206,794,520, which have now been repaid in full.

The United States Railroad Administration on May 14, 1926, announced that all carriers formerly under Federal control had been finally settled with The total claims first put in amounted to $1,014.402,446.72. These claims were reduced to $768,981,299. The net amount paid by the United States in settlements was $48,379,902, being 6.291 per cent. of the amount originally claimed. The adjustment was made without litigation and well within the appropriation originally made by Congress. James C. Davis, former Director General of the railroads, in his report submitted to President Coolidge on Dec. 14, 1925, fixed the total cost to the Government of Federal control of the railroads during 32 months including operating losses during the period of Federal operation and the six months guarantee period, at $1,696,000,000.

INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION.

The Interstate Commerce Commission, which, under the Transportation Act of 1920, is vested with new powers respecting rates, consolidations, securities, issues, etc., is constituted as follows: Chairman-Joseph B. Eastman of Massachusetts; Members-Richard V. Taylor of Alabama; Balthasar General managers of all the principal railroads of H, Meyer of Wisconsin: Frank McManamy of the the country were served on Feb. 1, 1926, with District of Columbia; Henry C. Hall of Colorado; wage demands by representatives of the Brother- Clyde B. Aitchison of Oregon; Thomas F. Woodhood of Railway Trainmen and the Order of Rail- lock of New York; John J. Esch of Wisconsin: E. I. way Conductors. Early in March, 1926, the Eastern, Lewis of Indiana; J. B. Campbell of Washington: Western and Southern roads declined to accede Frederick I, Cox of New Jersey: Secretary-George B. to the demand for increased wages. Committees McGinty of Georgia; Assistant Secretary-Thomas A. were appointed by the Eastern and Western rail-Gillis of Pennsylvania; Assistant to Secretary-James road executives to represent them in the wage con- L. Murphy; Chief Clerk and Purchasing Agentferences. The total increases demanded by the T. Leo Haden of the District of Columbia.

PUBLIC UTILITIES IN 1926.
By John A. Crone.

/Public utilities in 1926 maintained their strides, 500,000,000, of which about 850,000,000 were toll toward cheaper and more efficient service. Titanic or long-distance calls. Gross revenues from telepower system mergings spun a closer web of lines phone operations approximated $945,000,000, as over the Nation and brought electric light and against $865,000,000 in 1925. power conveniences within reach of several million more users.

Some public utility stocks which sky-rocketed in 1925 tobogganed in March, 1926. The crash of certain public utility shares pained only speculators, as various officials had warned the public that utility stocks were selling beyond their earning power. Nearly 8,000,000 individuals are now investors to the public service companies of the United States. Around $20,000,000,000 is now invested in public tilities. Seven billion dollars of utility securities, of which $5,590,000,000 represents new money and $1.410,000,000 refunding, have been sold to investors In the last seven years.

The magnitude of the utility industry is evidenced by the fact that American Telephone and Telegraph is unquestionably the third biggest corporation in the United States. It is exceeded only by the United States Steel Corporation with assets around $2,-. 445,000,000 and Standard Oll of New Jersey with assets approximating $1,245,000,000.

Electric motors in the United States to-day accomplish as much work as 170,000,000 men, which shows the economic importance of the electrie industry. Despite this fact only 65 per cent. of industrial power is supplied through electricity, snly 54 per cent. of the homes in this country are lectrically lighted, and less than 1 per cent. of the tailroads are electrified.

The electric railway transportation industry is recovering from its post-war depression. Despite the use of 20,000,000 pleasure cars, in addition to the large number of busses-some of which are operated in conjunction with trolleys-there were 15,000,000,000 passengers transported by street ars in the first ten months of 1926. In 1919 forty-eight companies with 3,581 miles of track and over $630,000,000 of stocks and bonds went into receivership; in addition 2,657 miles of track were sold under foreclosure sales. During 1926 there were $9,586,000 of new traction bond defaults, but the list of defaultea trolley obligations shows a net decline of $11,027,300.

The country's five great super-power systems were further extended during the year (see page 158 of The World Almanac for 1926), one of them starting in New York, thence through the Mid-West and South, interconnecting one-third of the United States with its giant tentacles.

THE GAS INDUSTRY.

Gas sales for 1926 are expected to show an intrease of 8 per cent. over the record-breaking figure of 421,400,000,000 cubic feet reported for 1925, according to the American Gas Association. As this figure represents artificial gas only, the total would be considerably larger were natural gas included. The manufactured gas industry has shown a fiveyear increase of 100,000,000,000 cubic feet and has doubled its sales in the last ten years.

The 987 gas companies of the United States connected 403,000 new customers to their mains during the twelve months, the total population now being served by gas standing at 52,000,000. Customers now number 10,600,000.

Latest official figures show the gas industry has 86,823 miles of mains, 10,825,000 meters in use, 7,500,000 active services, 89,759 employees and consumes annually in the manufacture of gas 7,400,000 tons of bituminous coal, 960,000 tons of anthracite, 3,800,000 tons of coke and 932,400,000 gallons of gas oil.

Last year several new models of gas-fired ice machines were introduced. Manufacturers predicted the artificial cooling of homes in summer with gasfired refrigerative units was a nearby possibility.

TELEPHONES.

Telephones in the United States on Jan. 1, 1927, approximated 17,790,000, against 16,935,918 and 16,072,758 on the same dates of 1926 and 1925, respectively. These telephones were owned and operated by 9,700 separate telephone companies throughout the country and hundreds of unincorporated farm or rural lines. Over fifteen telephones per 100 population in the United States, or ten times as many in relation to population as there are at present in Europe, were in use here as of Jan. 1, 1927.

Average daily completed calls; i. e.. calls from which revenues were received, approximated 70,600,000 in 1926, against 67,300.000 in 1925, and 64,600,000 during 1924. On this basis the total completed conversations in 1926 aggregated 23,

Investment in telephone plant and equipment Jan. 1, 1927, approximated $3.300,000,000, a gain of $265,000,000 in 1926. Telephone instruments themselves represent only 3 per cent. of the total investment, the balance being used for 20,000 central offices, poles, wires, cables and conduits required to place over 58,000,000 miles of wire throughout the country. Telephone employees as of Jan. 1, 1927, numbered 375,000, against 360,000 and 350.000 or 1926 and 1925, respectively.

ELECTRIC LIGHT INDUSTRY.

Approximately $7,500,000,000 were invested in electric light and power industry as of Dec. 1, 1926. Only fourty-four years before Sept. 4, 1882-the first operating station at Pearl Street, New York City, known as Edison Illuminating Company, was started by Thomas A. Edison.

Gross revenues of the electric light industry for the first eleven months of 1926 approximated $1.470,000,000. In order to bring in such gross receipts 65,942,344,000 kilowatt hours had to be generated.

On Dec. 1, 1926, there were about 18,500,000 electric light and power customers in the United States, of which 15,000,000 were domestic users, 2,850,000 commercial and 650,000 power customers. In 1902 customers aggregated only 600,000.

To-day more money is invested in electric light and power plants and artificial gas properties alone than in the steel and iron industry, including rolling mills, or the packing industry, or the textile industry. Only agriculture, or the railroads, or the manufacturing Industries grouped, exceed the combined capitalization of electric light and power and artificial gas industries.

Public utility power plants in the United States in 1919 required 35,100.000 short tons of coal, 11,050,000 barrels of fuel oil and 21,406,000,000 cubic feet of gas to produce 38,921,000,000 kilowatt hours. The generation in 1925 of 65,780,000,000 kilowatt hours required 40.222,000 short tons of coal, 10,246,000 barrels of fuel oil and 46,521,000,000 cubic feet of gas. The operating efficiency attained during 1926 lowered these amounts of coal, oll and gas required to generate power.

The United States, as of Sept. 1, 1926, had a total installed electric generating capacity equal to 50,000,000 horse power, a gain of 400 per cent. since 1900. 61 per cent. of this power was in socalled central stations selling energy at wholesale and retail to municipalities, manufacturers and domestic consumers, the balance being produced by private companies or individuals for their own use. Central stations have shown an increase of more than 1,000 per cent., as against only 100 per cent. increase for private plants.

Although people have been led to believe that Muscle Shoals and Niagara Falls are the two greatest producers of electricity in the United States, a survey made by the New England Bureau of Public Service Information says the fact remains that New York City alone consumes more electricity every day than is produced by all the power plants at Niagara Falls. One power station in New York City, the survey continues, when completed will generate eight times as much power as that now produced at Muscle Shoals and nearly twice as much as the ultimate capacity of Wilson Dam when fully completed.

The average consumption of coal per kilowatt hour by public utility power plants in this country, according to the National Electric Light Association, was 3.2 pounds in 1919, while in 1925 it was only 2.1 pounds. It is believed the use of coal per kilowatt hour will be slightly less than two pounds during 1926.

ELECTRIC RAILWAYS.

Electric railway traffic for 1925 totaled 15,500.000.000 passengers and, from reports to the American Electric Railway Association for the first ten months of 1926, these figures will show an increase. Average fares also showed a slight increase over 1925.

Electric railway single track mileage operated in 1926 approximated 42,912 miles against 43,201 in 1925. The reduction in mileage is due to abandonment of operation by several of the smaller and unprofitable companies and to the partial substitution of bus service for railway operation by various traction companies.

Motor busses operated by electric railways in 1926 totaled 6,556, with 14,889 miles of route. This contrasts with 4,452 busses and 12,060 miles of route in 1925.

THE UNITED STATES

GENERAL ADMINISTRATION.

(As of Dec. 1, 1926.)

Chairman-T. V. O'Connor: Vice Chairman-
E. C. Plummer: Commissioners-W. S. Benson, W. S.
Hill, Jefferson Myers, R. K. Smith, P. S. Teller.
Assistant to the Chairman-M. G. Irvine; Secretary
-Samuel Goodacre: General Counsel-Chauncey G.
Parker; Disbursing Officer-E. H. Schmidt; Chief
Clerk-M. J. Pierce.

UNITED STATES SHIPPING BOARD
EMERGENCY FLEET CORPORATION.

(As of Dec. 1, 1926.)

Trustees Gen. A. C. Dalton, J. Harry Philbin. E. H. Schmidt, D. 8. Morrison, FG. Frieser. James A. Wilson, and H. Y. Saint.

SHIPPING BOARD.
less unexpended
amounts returned to

U. S. Treasury to July
1, 1923.

Pres. allotment, 1918.
Pres. allotment, 1919..
Accumulated

excess

Dollars. Dollars.

5,567,008,008

3,971,237

552,871

of

37,689,498
11,745,815

53,959,420

prior appropriations and proceeds of sales.. Settlement of claims, 1923 Total returns to U. S. Treasury.

to

Net allotments and appropriations to Emergency Fleet Corporation President-A. C. and including Dalton; Vice up President J. fiscal year ending June Harry Philbin: Treasurer-E. H. Schmidt; General Morrison: Comptroller-D. 8. 30, 1927. Secretary-Samuel Goodacre; General Counsel-Chauncey G. Parker; Director, Fleet Control Dept.-J. Harry Philbin; Director Traffic Dept.-F. G. Frieser; Director, Operations Dept.-James A. Wilson: Director, Supply Dept.-H. Y. Saint; Director, Insurance Dept.-operators approximately as follows: B. K. Ogden; Director for Europe-J. E. Sheedy.

The cost of the United States Governmentowned merchant marine since its organization is shown by the following table:

APPROPRIATIONS AND ALLOTMENTS.
(Years are fiscal ending June 30. Cents omitted.)
For the activities of the United States Shipping Board.
Dollars.
Fiscal Year.

Dollars.

.3,620,965,49

GOVERNMENT OPERATED SHIPS.
As of June 30, 1926, the Government operater:
Cargo vessels were distributed among the variou

Northern Europe; United Kingdom

and Ireland:

American Dixie Line.
American Merchant Lines.
American Palmetto Line.
Mobile Oceanic Line..
Oriole Lines...

Total..

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No:

D.W.T

22

198,72

11

88.30

2

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18

148,25

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Bordeaux-Hamburg Range:

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America Francé Line.

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American Diamond Lines.

14

123,44

1920.

758,976

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31,31

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Mobile Oceanic Line..

5

45,80

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139.11

1924.

411,500

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90,51

1925.

344,000

Yankee Line..

61,38

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Of these, 287 vessels of 2,472,178 deadweight tonnage were active and 726 of 4,982,528 deadweight tonnage were inactive.

The United States Shipping Board owns also the Hoboken Terminal, the Boston Army Base, the Brooklyn Army Base, the Philadelphia Army Base, the Norfolk Army Base, the Charleston Army Base and six oil bunker stations. Some of these are operated by the Board, while others are under lease to private corporations.

SALE OF SHIPS.

On July 1, 1926, the fleet controlled by the Shipping Board had been reduced to 881 ships with a deadweight of 6.876,069 tons. Of these, 568 of 4,240,574 deadweight tons were laid up, and the remaining number were in operation.

Sales for the fiscal year 1925-1926 in brief detail

were:

Sixty-nine cargo vessels of 369,488 deadweight tons were sold for $5,667,083 for operation "as is," that is, without obligation on the part of the buyers to either recondition them or maintain them in a designated service. Of these, thirty-three were of the lake-built class bought for service principally in the coastwise trade.

Twenty-three vessels of 95,894 tons were sold for a cash consideration of $593,321 and an obligation on the part of the buyers to perform specified alteration-betterments, which in most cases consisted of the installation of 'tween decks and side ports to more adequately adapt the ships as general cargo carriers for coastwise service. This group was drawn from the lake-built class with the exception of one larger vessel sold for conversion to a self-trimming collier.

Thirty-three cargo vessels with a deadweight of 265,675 tons were sold for a cash consideration of $2,319,922 and agreement to operate the vessels in the services specified for a period of five years.

199 cargo vessels of 813,820 deadweight tons were sold for $1,697,470 with the buyer obligated to dismantle and scrap them.

Two ex-enemy passenger and cargo ships with a gross of 19,658 tons were sold for $150,000. The purchaser of these two old vessels contemplated extensive reconditioning to adapt them to a service it was planned to develop.

Nine combination passenger and cargo ships with a gross of 125,678 tons were sold for $8,604,000 cash consideration and an obligation to operate the ships in their respective services for five years.

One tanker of 10,250 deadweight tons was sold for $166,562 and an undertaking to convert the vessel to Diesel propulsion.

$467,700; ten of
built during the
one uncompleted

Twelve tugs were sold for ocean-type steel construction war; one old steel tug; and wooden tug. Four drydocks of wooden construction were sold for a total of $450,000.

Three wooden harbor tugs and a small launch were transferred to Government departments.

TEST OF PUBLIC OPINION. Pursuant to a resolution calling on the Shipping Board to report to Congress before Jan. 1, 1927, un its views concerning methods by which the American merchant marine can be best maintained (1) through private capital and under private owneralp, and (2) through construction, operation and Ownership by the Government, a committee of the board, E. C. Plummer, Chairman, P. S. Teller, and

J. H. Walsh, undertook an investigation of the public mind.

A questionnaire was given wide distribution among all classes of business, commerce and industry, ard hearings held in the larger cities. In virtually all of these regional meetings resolutions were adopted demanding the maintenance of an adequate Amerlean merchant marine, privately owned, if possible, but one which may be maintained and operated by Government agencies under circumstances where private shipping capital is unable or unwilling to take over its ownership and management. While these resolutions are not in complete harmony, they are substantially in agreement in the following features:

1. A merchant marine is essential for the development and maintenance of our commerce, and for our national security.

2. If the merchant marine is to be privately owned under existing circumstances, some form of Government financial aid is necessary. A minority favored permanent Government ownership and operation. 3. Under the present plan of Shipping Board operation of the fleet, the trade routes now existing should be continued and desirable new ones should be added and developed under the supervision and control of the United States.

4. A definite policy of replacement, reconstruction and modernization of American ships is necessary in order that they may successfully compete with foreign ships.

5. Financial aid which might be given by the Government should not be in the nature of a direct subsidy, but should take the form of payment for services rendered, such as the carriage of foreign mail and the training of men,in the Naval Reserve. By Act of Congress June 30, 1924, the sum of $25,000,000 was made available to install internalcombustion engines in vessels owned by the Government. The purpose of this act was to equip a fleet of ships with the most modern type of propulsive machinery and also to promote the domestic manufacture of these engines and the development of skilled workmen in this field among citizens of the United States. Actual accomplishment in this Dieselization program was effected during the year 1926 in the launching of the motorships Tampa and West Honaker. Both of these vessels have been converted from steam operation to motor propulsion and are now actively engaged in the transAtlantic trade.

An outstanding activity of the Shipping Board during 1926 was the action taken to provide vessels for the emergency movement of grain, flour, cotton and other commodities at times when all available tonnage was being diverted to the extremely lucrative trans-Atlantic coal trade. The British coal strike, causing a great shortage of coal from the United Kingdom and some Continental countries, stimulated unprecedented demand for American coal. High ocean rates accompanied this demand, and the ships normally available for our seasonal exports took advantage of the situation.

The Shipping Board has maintained about fifty vessels for emergency use, such as was necessary in this crisis. All of these vessels were put into service during the summer months and, during the fall, as the demand for ships increased, more tonnage was added until the extra ships numbered ninety-two. The effect of the presence and use of these extra ships was the saving of many millions of dollars to cotton and grain growers, and the practical stabilization of rates which undoubtedly would have increased to large proportions if the scarcity of steamers had been allowed to continue.

ROUND THE WORLD IN 28 DAYS, 14 HOURS, 36 MINUTES. Edward S. Evans, a business man of Detroit, and | The log of the trip was:

Linton Wells, a newspaper man of New York, under the auspices of the North American Newspaper Alliance, established a record for encircling the globe, when they reached the Pulitzer Building in Park Row, New York City, in an automobile at 4:6:51 P. M.. on July 14, 1926. Vilhjalmur Stefanson, the Arctic explorer, was the official timekeeper, and announced the time of the trip as 28 days, 14 hours, 36 minutes and 51 seconds. The Journey Covered 20,100 miles over land and sea by steamers, fast trains, motor cars and airplanes.

John Henry Mears, who also welcomed them, had a world-circling record of 35 days, 21 minutes by train and ship, made in 1913. His trip cost him $836.41. The journey of Evans and Wells cost them about $25,000, and 8,500 miles were made by air without a mishap.

Evans and Wells left from the Pulitzer Buliding at 1:30 A. M., June 16, and caught the Aquitania.

Their schedule was carefully worked out in advance and was closely followed in spite of several breakdowns which caused rearrangements of details.

Leg

Airplane.

Transportation

Actual
Time*

Boat.. aAutomobile.

Days Hrs 6 7

712 10

dAirplane.

5

Airplane.

10

Airplane.

32

90

Train.

37/2

[blocks in formation]

Train.

New York to Cherbourg
Cherbourg to Paris..
Paris to Berlin.
Berlin to Koenigsberg.
Koenigsberg to Moscow.
Moscow to Omsk..
Omsk to Chita.
Chita to Harbin.
Harbin to Mukden..
Mukden to Fusan.
Fusan to Shimonoseki.
Shimonoseki to Yokohama
Yokohama to Victoria.
Victoria to New York.. Airplane.

ထော

Actual traveling time without counting stopovers. aMotor car substituted for disabled airplane. dAirplane flight substituted for scheduled train.

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