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By Mr. ToWNSEND :
Q. And I understand you to say there are three towns intervening between the terminit-A. There are four post-offices, and then there are three stage-routes, two of them daily, which supply several other towns. It would be necessary for the stages to wait for the distribution of the mails at the post-offices if there was not a ronte-messenger.
By the CHAIRMAN:
By Mr. FREEMAN: Q. Is it pot perbaps a matter of judgment and discretion as to those routes, which nost necessarily be left to the superintendent ?-A. There was a demand for the route ind petitions in favor of it.
Q. Must not the establishment of ronte-agents on all these routes depend necessarily upon the judgment of somebody, whether superintendent or other official 1-A. Yes, sir; I think so.
Q. So in regard to matters in your department you have to rely upon your own judgment?-A. Yes, sir; in a great inany things.
By Mr. CALDWELL: Q. Have you seen Mr. Cheney much about Concord last year?-A. I have met him several times.
Q. How long is it since you last saw him at Concord :-A. I think that the last time I saw him at Concord he came there in reference to the examination of the routeagents.
Q. Do you know of Mr. Cheney's showing any activity in politics last year at Concord I-A. No, sir; I do not.
WASHINGTON, D. C., March 5, 1878. JAMES F. BRIGGS, Representative from the State of New Hampshire, sworn and examined.
To Mr. EASTMAN : I reside in Manchester; I bave lived there for five years; before living there I resided at Hillsboro'.
Question. State what you know in reference to the mail-route messenger between Contoocook and Hillsboro', and as to wbat necessity there is for that route, and state any facts within your knowledge bearing on the question.—Answer. The route-agent, I believe, is Mr. Richardson; he is a Hillsboro' man whom I have known very well for twenty years, and he is a good officer. The railroad from Contoocook to Hillsboro' is about fourteen iniles long, Hillsboro' being the end of the railroad. Between Contoocook and Hillsboro' Bridge there is the post-office at Contoocook, wbich is quite a village. Then the next post-office on the road is West Hopkinton. The next is Henni. ker-the center of the town, which is quite a village; and the next is West Heppiker. Hillsboro' Bridge is the end of the road. From Hillsboro' Bridge there is a daily stage, which runs in connection with that train from Hillsboro' to Bennington, ien miles off. There are post-offices at West Deering, South Antrim, and then at Bennington. Then there is a stage wbich runs from Hillsboro' Bridge to Keene, three times a week, which leaves on the arrival of the train. That road is thirty-two miles long. The first postaffee on that stage-road is Antrim, north branch. The next is Stoddard Center; the Dext Stoddard Box; then Munson ville and Sullivan, and there must be one or two other post-offices between that point and Keene. From Hillsboro' Bridge there was another stage line running three times a week from Hillsboro' to Lempster. The postotices on that line are Hillsboro' (lower village), Hillsboro' (upper village), and Hillsbaro'. There is another one at Washington; another at East Lempster, and then one at Lempster. Then there was a daily stage running from the bridge to East Washington, ten miles, with a post-office at Hillsboro' Center, and one at the terminus at East Washington. These stage-routes were all supplied with mail matter that came up over this Contoocook Railroad. In reference to the establishment of that route-agency, I did what I could myself in the matter, as I was then a citizen of Hillsboro', to have a route-agent put upon the line, because I believed that the service required it. Before the route-agent was put upon the line, the mail was sent in closed pouches intrusted to the custody of the brakeman on the car. Sometimes they would throw out the Wrong bag; but even if the bags all came through safely the postmaster at Hillsboro' Bridge had to distribute all this mail matter, and the people going out on these various stage-roads would bave to wait, perhaps a half hour or more, for the mail to be distributed. Tbe train arriving there at five or six o'clock in the evening, the stages were delayed, and the passengers complained because they had to wait for the mails, and thereby lost the daylight for their travel, particularly on the long routes; and they complained that they had to ride during the night.
Q. State whether or not you are acquainted with Mr. Cheney ?-A. I am.
Q. Are you acquainted with his reputation as superintendent of the railway mail service l-A. I think I am.
Q. What is that reputation 1-A. I think it good; I have no doubt about it.
Q. State whether or not you are acquainted with the efficiency of the railway mail service in New England, or any portion of it.--A. I am not; but I think, as a matter of opinion, tbat we have excellent mail facilities in New Hampshire, as we ought to have all over the country.
By the CHAIRMAN: Q. Have you any knowledge as to Mr. Cheney's diligence in attendance on bis duties as superintendent of the railway mail service ! -A. I bave no personal knowledge of the way in which he discharges his duties, because my business does not call my attention to it. I never have beard any complaint of the service in our section of the country. I have heard no complaints against Mr. Cheney, excepting from one source, and that was from a gentleman who was discharged from the service, and who has testified before this committee.
Q. State bis name!-A. Mr. Conn.
Q. How far is Manchester from where Mr. Cheney lives 1-A. Sixty-four miles, I should say.
Q. Do you know whether Mr. Cheney spends a large part of his time at home at Asbland 1-A. I do not; I am at Ashland only occasionally-never there to make any stay. When I do go to Asbland it is generally on a Saturday night, and I return on Monday morning; I have seen Mr. Cheney there at those times, but in the week days I am scarcely ever there.
Q. Is Mr. Cheney active in New Hampshire politics 1-A, He is an active politician, the same as almost all the New Hampshire men are; we are all interested in politics there.
Q. You are a pretty lively set 1-A. Yes; we try to be. I do not think that Mr. Cheney is officiously so. I never knew that he attended to politics to the neglect of his official duties; he never did to my knowledge.
By Mr. EASTMAN: Q. If you have been at Mr. Cheney's house, state whether or not you have found him sick there?-A. Yes, sir; I have been to Mr. Cheney's house but rarely ; I was there a year ago last summer.
Q. What was his condition at that time ?-A. He was sick at that time. He was up, around the house, but was complaining of some neuralgic trouble, I think, in the bead.
By Mr. CANNON : Q. Are you sufficiently familiar with tbe matter of pay for distribution, or of an al. lowance for distribution of mails at the head post-offices where stage-routes and horseroutes run in, to know about wbat the allowance would be for distributing those mails by the postmasters on the line of the Contoocook and Hillsboro' road, in the event that they were not made up by a route-agent?-A. No, sir ; I am not.
By Mr. MONEY : Q. Would there be any difficulty about that 1-A. I should want to be paid for it if I were postmaster.
Q. But do you not know it as a fact, that the salary of postmasters is fixed upon tbe amount of stamps sold at their offices -A. Yes, sir, I know that; but I understand that some distributing-offices receive sometbing additional, but I am not familiar enough with the matter to give any information on the subject to the committee.
Q. You say that you enjoy increased mail facilities in New Hampshire since Mr. Cheney went into the office -A. We have better mail facilities.
Q. Do I understand you to apply that remark to the locality immediately around you, or to New England generally 1-A. I do not know about New England, but only my own section of the country.
Q. You refer simply to those roads that you bave talked about in your testimony !A. Yes, sir.
- Washington, D. C., March 5, 1878. E. G. PIERCE sworn and examined.
To Mr. EASTMAN: I reside in Portsmouth, X. H. I am postinaster there; I have held that office for vine years.
Question. State whetber or pot you are acquainted with Mr. Cheney's reputation as superintendent of railway mail service.—Answer. I am.
Q. What is his reputation 1-A. Good.
Q. How does it compare in the present with the past ?-A. There has been a great improvement in it since Mr. Cheney's appointment.
Q. How is it as to the condition of discipline in the departmenti-A. It is good, so far as I can judge.
Q. State whether or not you have occasion frequently to go to Boston 1-A. I have.
Q. How is the fact as to your calling at Mr. Cheney's office ?-A. I have found Mr. Cheney there frequently, and sometimes I have not found him there.
Q. How often have you called at Mr. Cheney's in Boston, during the nine years?-A. During the first four years I was there frequently, I should say two or three times a month.
By Mr. MONEY: Q. Do you know anything about the duties of Mr. Holmes in that office?-A. I do Dot.
Q. Do you know anything about his being paid on two pay-rolls 1-A. No, sir.
Q. Do you think that Mr. Cheney bas been in his office as often as his duty required him to be, and bas attended to it as regularly as he should have done ?-A. I do.
WASHINGTON, D. C., March 5, 1878. J. E. LARKIN recalled.
By Mr. EASTMAN : Question. I asked you about the route from Contoocook to Hillsboro', I wish now to ask about the mail service on the half-past seven o'clock train, between Plymouth and Concord; state what you know about it.-Answer. Mr. Wright is the route-agent. He arrives at Concord at half-past ten, and leaves at half-past three. We receive closed bags on the evening train from Claremont and Newport, and all the mail that accumulates after three o'clock is made up, together with the mail of the closed bags, from the Montreal route. All the matter that is brought up from below and above is sent to Plymouth and is distributed by Mr. Wrigbt, the route-agent, so that the correspondence can be answered by the afternoon train. That is a very important route.
Q. What was the disposition of the mail prior to the establishment of that agency ?A. It was sent in closed bags to a few of those offices.
Q. And what effect had that upon places not reached by closed bags ?- A. Such places had mail facilities only once a day. Q. At what times 1-A. Down in the afternoon and up in the forenoon.
Q. Are yon familiar with the Pittsfield and Hookset route?-A. Somewhat. I think it is a very important route, add very necessary to have an agent upon it. I cannot well imagine how it could be served without an agent.
WASHINGTON, D. C., March 5, 1878. JOSEPII B. MANLY sworn and examined.
By Mr. EASTMAN: Question. State your residence and occupation.--Answer. I reside in Maine, and I am not in any business pow. I was formerly in the internal-revenue service. I was an internal-revenue agent during the year 1875, and about eight months in 1876. I was stationed in Boston.
Q. How long have you known Mr. Cheney ?-A. I have known Mr. Cheney since Q. Where was your office in Boston, in relation to Mr. Cheney's ?-A. It was in the post-office building, on the same floor as Mr. Cheney's.
Q. State whether or not you had occasion to go frequently into Mr. Cheney's office ; and, if so, what your experience was in regard to meeting him there.-A. I do not know that I had any particular occasion to go into Mr. Cheney's office, but I knew him very well, and when I was in Boston (as I was nearly every week) I used to go into his office, and I almost always found bim there. Q. State whether or not you are acquainted with the condition of the mail service,
as to efficiency, in any portion of New England.-A. As far as the State of Maine is concerned, I am pretty familiar with it.
Q. What is its condition as to efficiency 1-A, I think it very efficient.
Q. State whether or not you are acquainted with Mr. Cheney's reputation as superintendent of the railway mail service, in any part of New England :-A. So far as his reputation in Maine is concerned, I am acquainted with it.
Q. What is that reputation ?-A. Good.
Q. State whether or not yoa are acquainted with the discipline of the force in Mr. Cheney's department, in any portion of New England I-A. I know personally nearly all the postal and route-agents in the State of Maine. When I was in the internalrevenue service, my duty called me over porrions of New England a good deal, and in traveling I would frequently go into the postal car, having a personal acquaintance with all these men. As to their discipline I only know that they were efficient men, and were regarded as upright men.
By Mr. MONEY: Q. Do you not know tbat it is strictly against orders for anybody, pot connected with the postal service, to ride in the postal-cars ?-A. It is now; the order bas been recently issued. Q. When did you quit the internal-revenue service !-A. In November, 1876.
By the CHAIRMAN : Q. Has not that order been in force ever since the establishment of postal cars -A. I do not know. I know that within the last year a very strict order bas been issued about riding in postal cars. When I say that I used to ride in the cars, I do not mean to say that I went the whole distance in the postal car, but that I would go in and out of the postal car.
Q. Do you not know that a messenger or route-agent who wonld permit you to go into the car at all, would be liable to be removed for it?-A. No, sir; I do not. Mr. MONEY. Then you are not an expert in railway matters ! The WITNESS. No, sir. Mr. MONEY. But you testified that the mail-service in Maine is very efficient? The WITNESS. I think it is. Mr. MONEY. But you are not an expert? The WITNESS. No, sir.
Mr. MONEY. You do not know enough about it to know one of the plainest regulations of the department?
The Witness. I do not know that there is such a regulation.
WASHINGTON, D. C., March 5, 1878. A. H. TUTTLE sworn and examined.
To Mr. EASTMAN: I reside in Rutland, Vt.; I am postmaster there: I have held that position nearly four years; I am acquainted with Mr. Cheney ; that acquaintance commenced immediately after my appointment; I think I called upon Mr. Cheney in Boston pretty soon after he was appointed; I found him in his office,
Question. What has been your intercourse with Mr. Cheney since that time ? Answer. I have seen him in Boston once, I think, since that time, and he has been over the road. I think he spent a couple of days in our vicinity, studying out mail matters there, and I was with him there more or less. He telegraphed me to meet him, and I did so, and went over the road part of the way with him.
Q. Are you acquainted with the reputation of Mr. Cheney, in any portion of New England, as superintendent of the railway mail-service 1-A. I am in our section.
Q. What is that reputation ?-A. Excellent.
Q. Are you acquainted with the railway mail service as to efficiency ?--A. I know a good deal about it in our section.
Q. What is your opinion in regard to it ?--A. I think it never was in better condition than it is to-day.
Q. How does it compare with its former condition ?-A. It is a good deal better.
Q. Are you acquainted with the discipline of the railway mail service officials !-A. Yes, sir; I think it is good. I do not know any reason wby it is not. They are an excellent set of men. They all do their duty promptly and well.
By the CHAIRMAN: Q. You spoke of having been with Mr. Cheney spending two days in the examination of roads on two different occasions ; are those the only times that you have seen Mr. Cheney there in the discharge of his duty ?-A. I do not recollect seeing him over the road at any other time.
Q. Are you within his jurisdiction as postmaster at Rutland 1-A. Yes, sir.
Q. To whom do you address your communications 1-A. To Thomas P. Cheney, invariably.
Q. From whom do you get replies 1-A. From Thomas P. Cheney.
Q. By anybody :- A. Frequently. I cannot tell how often I have received communications from Mr. Cheney by Mr. Holmes, Mr. Merrill, and Mr. Stabl.
Q. What proportion of the letters which you have received from Mr. Cheney have been through another person 1–A. I really cannot tell ; I never had my attention called to that.
Q. Have you any knowledge as to whether Mr. Cheney personally transacts this business or leaves it to subordiuates ?--A. I frequently had correspondence with him which I knew must have come from himself personally. He must have either dictated the letters or have written them in person. I presume he wrote them personally.
Q. Have you heard any complaints against Mr. Cheney 1-A. I have not. I am so near the line of the other division that I have a good deal to do with it, and have to report more or less to Mr. Jackson in New York. I do not know that there is any distinction between the two officers. I have thought that Mr. Cheney attended to his business as well as other superintendents.
WASHINGTON, D. C., March 5, 1978. E. T. ROWELL Sworn and examined.
(To Mr. Eastman): I reside in Lowell, Mass. ; I am postmaster there; I have held my position nearly four years; I am acquainted with Mr. Cheney; I have kown him about six years.
Question. State whether or not you have had any official relations with Mr. Cheney.-Answer. I bave orders frequently from him and other correspondence.
Q. Have you met Mr. Cheney in connection with your official duties?-A. I have. Q. Where -A. In Boston.
Q. How often 1-A. I sbould think that within the last six or seven months I have been there six or seven times, and I have seen Mr. Cheney probably three or four times.
Q. State whether or not you are acquainted with Mr. Cheney's reputation as a superintendent of the railway mail service in any portion of New England, and, if so, what portion.-A. I am ; in the vicinity of Lowell.
Q. What is that reputation I-A. It is good. Q. What is the condition of the railway mail service as to efficiency?-A. I think it is very efficient.
Q. What is the condition of the discipline of the force ?—A. It is good so far as I am acquainted with it.
Q. State whether or not the service is demoralized in any way.-A. Not that I am aware of.
By the CHAIRMAN: .Q. You have official correspondence with Mr. Cheney frequently, I suppose ?—A. Yes, sir,
Y. What proportion of that correspondence is conducted by Mr. Cheney himself 1A. I should think that for the past six months (which is all I can state with any degree of accuracy) I have had two or three letters signed by Mr. Cheney personally ; at least I suppose so.
Q. All the rest of the correspondence from him has been signed by another person ?A. Yes, sir; for that length of time.
Q. Do you know anything about this man Holmes ?-A. I know that there is such a tan,
Q. Do you know anything about his drawing two salaries -A. No, sir; I know nothing about it.
Q. Do you visit Boston often 1-A. I have stated that during the last six months I have been at Boston about once a month on the average, and that during that time I have met Mr. Cheney one-half the time.
Q. Does Mr. Cheney often visit your post office 1-A. No, sir; I do not think he has visited it during my administration.
Q. Do you know of his traveling over the roads ?-A. Yes, sir; I have met him several times at the station. Knowing that he was to pass, I have met bim on matters of basiness.