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man might find rest and his nerves shattered in the battle for dollars might again find rejuvenation and strength. And so the roar of its billows will live with us always as a grand triumphal solo, “the diapason of the deep."
Seattle, Tacoma, Spokane! great cities of a great and wonderful section of our country, little seems to be known of what a stupendous future awaits these cities. Seattle, standing as it does at the gateway of the Northwest, to the Pacific, Alaska and the Orient, has inherent in its position such boundless possibilities for the future that it almost overwhelms the mind to contemplate them. Puget Sound is a body of water whose beauty and usefulness must be seen to be appreciated, and it seems not a little strange that those possibilities were never disclosed to the rest of the world until the masterful mind of Mr. J. J. Hill, with his untiring energy and keen penetration, conceived and carried forward to completion the great Great Northern Railway. A trip over this great artery of commerce discloses to the careful observer the stupendous and seemingly impossible obstacles which were overcome in its construction-deserts were crossed, mountains pierced, rivers bridged, and curving cañons carved into tangents, and even now the expensive work of straightening curves and reducing grades goes steadily on.
In looking out over the great waste of desert land traversed by these trans-continental railways, one is forcibly reminded also of the great waste of waters over which and by which they go, and the thought will come to one that if these two wastes could be brought in contact they would, acting as two negatives, bring forth a positive result, and the desert would, under the influence of water and the tickling of the hoe, verily “blossom as the rose." Evidences of the serious grappling with this great problem of irrigation are seen in many places, and we believe the general Government could not engage in a policy fraught with more hope, comfort and good to future generations than gathering and impounding these waste waters so that they may be spread out over
those dreary, treeless wastes, to the end that all manner of vegetation will take the place of sage bush and cactus. he is a benefactor to humanity who makes two spears of grass or grain grow where only one grew before, then how much more is he a benefactor to the race who makes an apple, a peach, and a plum tree grow where before grew three sage bushes or three hundred even and cactithrownin? And let us hope that in the coming years the waste places between the verdure of the East and West will grow gradually less and less and finally treeless plain and desert waste will be only a reminiscence.
Of much interest also are the vast lava beds, over and by which these roads pass. In contemplating them, one's imagination can be given full rein-how came they there and from whence? Geology tells us they are basaltic, igneous rocks, which being the case shows us that they were melted in Nature's mighty crucible and belched forth to their present positions by some Titanic force, the magnitude and might of which is difficult of comprehension. What kindled and fed the intense fire which reduced these rocks to a liquid and gaseous state? What has filled the cavity, if it is filled, from whence they were expelled ? Questions which, perhaps, will never be answered, but we know these rocks are mute witnesses to former mighty convulsions and throes of nature, and that now the wind, rain, dew, and sunshine--the alchemy of nature--are disintegrating them to benefit mankind.
Those who enjoyed the trip over the Denver & Rio Grande will always think of those scenes with ever kindling awe and interest—the Royal Gorge will be to them an ever pleasant memory and wonder. And while we are thinking over the joys and wonders of the trip, we are also mindful of the fact that deep sorrow overtook some of the Brothers and their good wives, which will abide with them as a lasting grief, and to them our sympathy and condolence is extended.
Taking it all in all, we doubt if a more successful trip was ever made to a Grand Division meeting, and as we think over it and talk about it in the future, the little annoyances and inconveniences of the journey will gradually vanish and
the beauties and wonders of it will abide with us always to enlighten and bless, and always will we give thanks to the managements of the great railway lines which made the trip possible.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE INTERNATIONAL RAILWAY CONGRESS.
Probably the International Railway Congress, which closed its session in Washington recently, was one of the most notable gatherings that has ever assembled in this country. With the possible exception of agriculture, it represented the world's greatest capitalized industry. Similar conventions, or those of a similar nature, have been held in the Old World capitals at intervals of about five years, but this is the first one ever held on American soil. It is practically impossible to form a just estimate of such a gathering, far-reaching indeed should be its effects.
Probably nine-tenths of the people of the United States would, if asked the question, instantly say that we lead the world in transportation facilities; but bold indeed would be the man who would contend that there is no room for improvement. We believe we have the best accommodations in the world, for the traveling public, but back of that belief we see a death roll which we do not like to compare with a similar roll of other nations, and it is a fond hope that from out the deliberations and change of thoughts and ideas of those composing this gathering, ways may be evolved whereby a saving of life on our railways may result.
We are told that the foreign delegates numbered five hundred, and that “white city” of fifty buildings was erected in Washington, in which a remarkable exhibit of railway appliances was made by American manufacturers. Probably no more auspicious occasion could possibly arise for such an exhibit than was presented at that Congress. And we are informed that great manufacturers of engines, like the Baldwin
Locomotive Works, great manufacturers of automatic couplers, like the McConway & Torley Co., and of air brake appliances, like the Westinghouse Co., etc., had exhibits that far surpassed anything of the kind ever before seen.
With a railroad mileage approximating half of the whole world, and a tonnage annually moved on our steel rails greater than all the international commerce of the world, it is little wonder that we should regard ourselves as the greatest railroad country on earth; and while we haul greater trainloads and our freight rates are less than in any other country on earth, nevertheless it would be not only egotistical but probably quite far from the truth for us to think we could not learn much from a contact and exchange of thoughts and ideas with representatives of foreign railway managers and manufacturers. The tests of indestructible cars made by the Westinghouse Co., would indicate that loss of life by collisions and derailments will specdily grow less
Also in all parts of Europe, with the exception of Great Britain, they have state ownership of railroads, so that the continental experts will have chance to compare the advantages of the two systems. We hope they will speak their minds candidly and free from the influence of preconception. The practical advice of our foreign visitors on this point should have much weight, because there is very strong opinion in this country in favor of private ownership, as it is economically administered. We shall look for good results from the meeting in many ways, and indulge the hope that such gatherings may be found to be of advantage
enough to warrant having them at regular intervals in the future.
In welcoming the delegates on behalf of the Nation at the opening session, Vice-President Fairbanks said in part: “The railway is essentially an instrument of our modern civilization. There are many men living who were born prior to the construction of the first railway, either in England the United States. It was created to meet an imperative demand, and its growth has been one of the most marvelous developments of recent times. Not only has the mileage of the railway rapidly and vastly increased, but there has been a marked improvement in the character of its construction and in the method of its operation. Inventive genius, labor and unlimited capital have been employed continually in devising new means of increasing its efficiency and adapting it to the increasing requirements of trade and commerce.
“The sessions of the International
Railway Congress are of far-reaching moment. They bring into closer fellowship distinguished and able representatives of many nations inspired by a wholesome, common impulse. They bring together those who are engaged in promoting the arts of peace, and who are desirous of advancing the welfare of mankind. While deliberating upon methods to promote the efficiency of the railway, let us hope that you may cultivate a purpose to promote the adjustment, through the arbitrament of reason, so far as may be done consistently with national honor, of those perplexing problems which sometimes arise to menace the world's peace. The nation which seeks an honorable settlement of differences with its neighbors in some other manner than by the sword, is not decadent; it is not wanting in national virility. It is merely manifesting an advanced degree of civilization. It is evidencing the fact that the barbaric strain has run out of its blood.”
Speaking in a recent editorial on an unsound dictum on strikes by ex-Judge Jenkins the Chicago Record-Herald makes the following wise, pointed and timely comment:
UNSOUND DICTUM ON “There is not an honest and candid newspaper in the country which does not iterate and reiterate the proposition that the strike in which lawlessness or violence is resorted to is foredoomed to failure, and that where a passive and legal trial of economic strength'which is the proper scientific definition of a strike-cannot give labor victory nothing else will or can, as a rule.
." Yet ex-Judge Jenkins, over anxious to strengthen an argument in favor of the injunction, makes the extraordinary statement that 'it is idle to talk of a peaceable strike,' for ‘none such ever occurred,' and declares that the suggestion that a strike may succeed without
violence is ‘an impeachment of intelligence'—such an impeachment as would be implied by the phrase "bloodless war.'
“These are very dangerous notions, and happily, as unsound as they are dangerous. It is not true, as a matter of fact and history, that no peaceable strike ever occurred; there have been many peaceable strikes, and the tendency today is away from violence. Experience and better leadership are bound to in
the proportion of the lawful strikes.
"The success of a strike depends on the conditions of the labor market and the state of the industry affected. There are times when employers make concessions because they cannnot afford the losses incident to a strike. There are times when labor accepts reductions of pay and submits to other sacrifices, knowing as it does that the employers
would be bold indeed who would assert that they are so now. That inconsistencies, crudities and untenable demands and positions will mark the evolutionary progress
every human undertaking is but the acknowledgement of the working of a fundamental or basic law which runs through all nature, and by a reasonable amount of thought, no exception to the law should be expected from organized labor.
Men of superior intelligence can be found who will criticise with vehement sarcasm and heat some labor organization, the members of which are ployed by a monopoly controling the price of some everyday necessity of life, when it demands a ten per cent raise of pay; but who will receive with complaisant serenity the announcement that said monopoly in granting such increase at the same time raises the price of the commodity twenty-five per cent. Those there are, no doubt, who would characterize the action of organized labor in this as greedy, and the action of the corporation as sharp business acu
can not go on on the old basis. Instance the action of the bituminous miners last year.
“Violence only intensifies bitterness and the spirit of hostility. It alienates public sympathy, moreover, without which no cause or movement can prosper in our day.
“The truth is that violence and lawlessness are fatal to strikes in the vast majority of cases. Judge Jenkins's utterly unsound dictum will not commend itself to intelligent labor."
We are particularly pleased to note the above editorial in the Chicago Record-Herald for two reasons: first, on account of the sentiment expressed, and second, on account of its wide circulation and educational influence.
There is a feeling abroad in the land among the laboring classes that the great metropolitan dailies and other publications of extensive circulation, are more or less hostile to organized labor. Also we have reason to regard ex-Judge Jenkins as one of Labor's most relentless and inconsistent enemies. It is small wonder that so great a lack of knowledge of the ideas and aims of organized labor exists among the great number of individuals who go to make up the general public, when we note how very far from true ideas and knowledge are men who have had wide experience and ample opportunity for an intimate and definite knowledge along these lines.
No wonder the labor movement is not understood by those not directly interested in it. And it is easy to see how outsiders, the public not in fellowship with the laboring masses, absorb erroneous ideas which have gained extensive credence through a partial or wholly erroneous publication of methods and actions. It would be idle for any advocate of any cause which is to affect a large portion of the public, to claim for that cause practical perfection without the details of it having been subjected to the searching and crucial test of trial. Neither combination or organization of the laboring crafts, nor combination or organization in business directions as
first contemplated and attempted was perfect as to detail, and verily he
Of course, when looked at from a logical standpoint, the corporation simply made the labor demand an excuse for adding about twenty per cent to their profits. It is passing strange why the public is so inconsistent in such a case, as the ten per cent raise of the laborers in itself makes not the slightest difference to the said public, while the twenty-five per cent raise in the muchused commodity comes directly out of the public pocket. The natural inclination in this country always has been to side with the under dog, regardless almost of the merits of the fight, but it seems as if in this case that the usual order is reversed.
There seems to be an idea abroad also that labor unions were organized for the sole purpose of striking, whereas, exactly the reverse is the case. It should be borne in mind that a strike is a fight and that generally speaking there is reason or cause for such action. be the striker is in the wrong, but we dare say that but few strikes have occurred in which the wrong was ALL on one side, and the right thing for the
public to do is to hold its judgment in them, that others might take advantabeyance until the merits of the diffi age of their experiences, trials and hardculty have been established. We speak ships; nor is it to be expected that they about the public in this way because it made no mistakes, or that those who is the third party, willing or unwilling, came after would not try to find a betto all strikes, and whose wishes are not ter trail, often, forsooth, getting strandusually consulted in the matter until ed in some quagmire of passion, pride, after hostilities have begun albeit the suc ignorance or perversity. Those who cess of such hostilities is usually in the devote all their time and energies chashands of the public.
ing the god of gold, fail to see the angel We do not contend that labor unions of peace and contentment near by. can remedy all the ills “flesh is heir Those who cry out against the cause of to," but they can go a long way to labor, fail to comprehend that it is the ward righting ills which were brought cause of humanity, and being such it upon the country by other agencies will ultimately succeed. Money is not than themselves—ills,
bold all there is in life, and the fallacy that to say, with which no
it has an equivalent in human lives outside of the unions can so successfully should be rooted out of our civilization. cope. The record of trades unions will We should learn to realize that the best bear out the assertion that its history things in life are not produced or procured is one largely of beneficence. Truly, by money, nor that the possession of large the strike is the weapon of organized amounts of money is sure to bring much labor, but had it not a counterpart in happiness or gratification. the methods" of organized capital? An idea is prevalent, we know, that Is the lockout so very far removed, in all, or nearly all, strikes are for an admeaning, from the strike? Is there so vance in wages, but reference to stavery much difference, rightly considered tistics, will at once show how erroneous between the aims and ultimate objects this is, and at the same time it shows of organized labor and organized capi that the laborer does not regard wages tal?
as the sole aim of employment. This We do not expect the regeneration of also lends emphasis to that other factor man in a day, but we realize that it is in human endeavor, which contends a far cry from his origin to the present that wages are not all the world gets time, and certainly labor has borne its from labor, that wages are
never the full share of hardships and vicissitudes. full equivalent of human work, that The prejudices and perversities of men there is brought out by the daily toil that have been “bred in the bone,” so of the masses a quality, a tangible asset to speak, do not disappear at the word to humanity, that is never counted in of command. The inherent tendency dollars and never can be. The concenof man to cling to accustomed thoughts trated labor and thought of the ages is and environments of life, is not easily the civilization of today and the civilieradicated-no good fairy can swing its zation of a century hence will be the wand over the evil passions of mankind civilization of today plus the amount and say to them “begone” and have it of labor and thought given to the world
The way to industrial betterment during that time. In the great work was blazed by the pioneers in the move of civilization, organized labor is a nement just as surely as the pioneers of cessary factor, because one of its great this country left blazed trails behind aims is the education of the masses,