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OHIO RIVER IMPROVEMENT AND TRANSCONTINENTAL
CITIZENS OF ALLEGHENY COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA,
The Ohio River improrement and transcontinental railways, and indorse
ment of same by the Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce.
JANUARY 21, 1875.-Referred to the Committee on Commerce and ordered to be printed.
PITTSBURGH, PA., January 15, 1875. At a meeting of the citizens of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, without reference to party, convened in La Fayette Hall, Pittsburgh, Wednesday evening, January 6, in pursuance to a call, (the original of which is attached,) the following memorial was adopted' unanimously, and, in accordance with the resolution passed, is forwarded to your houorable body.
JOS. D. WEEKS, Secretary.
THE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE OF PITTSBURGII,
Pittsburgh, Pa., January 15, 1875. At a regular meeting of the Chamber of Commerce of Pittsburgh, held at their rooms Tuesday, January 12, 1875, the following resolution was unanimously adopted :
"Resolred, That this Chamber of Commerce heartily indorse the pro. ceedings and resolutions of the citizens' meeting held in La Fayette Hall on the 6th instant, in favor of the improvement of the Ohio River and the national indorsement of transcontinental lines of railroads, and we urgently request our legislature, now in session, to take such action as will commend these measures to the iminediate attention of Congress."
JOS. D. WEEKS, Secretary Chamber of Commerce.
To the honorable Senate and House of Representatires of the United States
of America in Congress assembled : Believing that at times of great financial and industrial depressions like the present the views of the people as to the best methods of affording relief may not be unacceptable to Congress, we, citizens of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, respectfully present our views in the following memorial.
The panic of 1873, at first regarded as temporary, has resulted in wide-spread and long-continued disaster; industry has been prostrated, manufacturing crippled, and in many instances broken; capital is idle and labor unemployed, and, worst of all, from this stagnation of business an amount of privation and suffering to the laboring classes has followed of wbich words can convey po adequate idea. As one of the first effects of this panic (and one which in its reaction has intensified and continued it) was the stoppage of work ou the great transcontinental lines of railway, we desire to direct your attention to their completion as a means of affording the desired relief. We believe that the framers of our Con. stitution spoke wisely when in its preamble they declared one of its chief functions to be " to promote the general welfare;” and believing this, we urge that both Government and people are interested in any measure or measures that will revive the dormant industries of the country, and especially where the occupancy and cultivation of its unoccupied land will follow, wealth be developed, and its income largely increased.
Therefore, as labor develops wealth and idleness consumes it unproductively, and as the increase of the wealth of the people strengthens the resources of the Government, we claim that the Government is alike interested with its people in reviving the work of building the great transcontinental railroads—the Texas Pacific and Northern Pacific—as a means of setting in motion the many forms of industry in the country, thus affording employment to the people and increasing the wealth of the nation. In granting this aid, in the form of a guarantee of the interest only on the bonds of these roads, the Government being secured by the return in trust of the lands of these corporations and by a first mortgage on all their franchises and property, we do not consider that a subsidy will, in any sense, bave been conferred. It is merely the loan of an interest indorsement on the basis of ample security to the indorser.
The advantages of the early completion of the Texas and Pacific Rail road, in part, will be in the protection it will afford our southern frontier, as well as against Indian raids on the settlers and miners in the Southern Territories, and will save the Government millions yearly in the cost of transporting supplies to troops and garrisons operating against Indians in that region; it will secure competition in transcoutinental traffic, which will reduce rates and draw to the overland route a large share of traffic between Europe and Eastern Asia. Moreover, it is but just to the South, since the present line leaves to the southwest the capitals and centers of population of a majority of the States; it will also stimulate the production of cotton, thus affording material for export that will aid to pay interest on the debt abroad; it will greatly in'crease the supply of cattle, thus equalizing the cost of a very important 'article of food in all parts of the country; it will develop the sheepculture of New Mexico, thus avoiding the necessity for importing large quantities of wool from abroad; it will develop the vast mineral regions of this country and Mexico, thus adding vastly to our production of the precious metals, and attracting a great tide of immigration, thus promoting immeasurably the wealth of the country; especially it will create a
great demand for iron and coal, and for labor, thus inspiring and developing the activities and resources of nation and country and bringing plenty to the homes where want and suffering are now felt.
We equally urge the prompt completion of the Northern Pacific Railroad as opening up the finest wheat-producing region of the Northwest; as penetrating the Indian country, and quieting and civilizing the tribes of that region; as opening up the great Yellowstone Valley; as affording communication with the extreme northwestern part of the country; as rendering profitably available the vast trade of the Columbia River region, and as affording a new route to the Orient, in the region of the tradewinds, and with the shortest sea-voyage at all available. Many of the reasons which are referred to in connection with the Texas and Pacific apply with equal force to this road, and we claim for both equally the interest and aid of the nation.
We also desire to bespeak your careful consideration of another sub. ject to which your attention has already been called, viz, the permanent improvement of the Ohio River and the mouths of the Mississippi. The commercial importance of such a system of improvements as will make the Ohio navigable at ordinary stages of water can scarcely be overestimated. Notwithstanding the present uncertainty of its nav. igation, its commerce reaches in value hundreds of millions of dollars yearly. Draining an area of nearly a quarter of a million square miles, passing in its course through a most fertile and productive ralley, besides thousands of busy workshops, along the borders of six most prosperous and wealthy States, the natural highway from the portages of the Allegheny to the Mississippi, and through to the Gulf and the vast Central and South American markets, already opening up to our prodacts, and that must, before many years, be largely supplied froin the United States, its claims are not inconsiderable, but merit at your hands immediate and liberal consideration, not only in view of the present benefit that will accrue, but also in anticipation of and preparation for the commerce that must find its natural course up and down the Obio Valler.
In view of these considerations we submit the following: · Resolved, That having carefully examined these subjects in the light of the interests of the Government and welfare of the people, we urge upon the attention of Congress the foregoing as embodying our matured opinion and most earnest expression of sentiment on the subjects mentioned, and that the committee on resolutions be requested to forward this memorial to our Representatives in Congress, with the call for this meeting attached, and tbat they be requested to present the same.
JANUARY 21, 1875.- Referred to the Committee on Military Affairs and ordered to be
To the honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
States of America in Congress assembled : Your memorialist, J. J. Brown, respectfully represents to your honorable bodies, that he is a loyal citizen of the United States, and resides at present at Forsyth, in the county of Taney and State of Missouri, and that he has a just claim against the Government for pay, for services rendered as a first lieutenant, in recruiting the Second Regiment of Arkansas Volunteers Cavalry, as will more fully appear from the following statement of facts, viz: That he was enrolled at Helena, Ark., on the 21th day of July, 1862, and commissioned as a first lieutenant in said regiment, under Colonel Morgan, who was recruiting said regiment, and that on the same day be was ordered to Springfield, Mo., on the sanie service; and that on the journey to the said city of Springfield he was obliged to pass the enemy's lines and had to destroy his commission and other papers to avoid detection ; that he went to Missouri as ordered, and continued to recruit for said regiment until the 30th day of April, 1863, at wbich time he was captured near Rolla, Mo., by the confederate army, and carried a prisoner to the city of Little Rock, in the State of Arkansas, where he was kept in close confinement, on less than quarter rations, until a few weeks prior to the capturing of said city by the Federal army, when he escaped from the prison and returned to Missouri, arriving at Springfield, in said State of Missouri, on the 1st day of November, 1863.
Your memorialist would further state that, as he was informed during his imprisonment, said Colonel Morgan was dismissed from the service for misconduct in office, and Col. John E. Phelps appointed to fill the vacancy; and that said regiment had received its full quota of men and officers, so that your memorialist had lost his place in said regi. ment, and the said Colonel Morgan bad either lost or destroyed the enlistment rolls of said regiment, rendering it impossible for him to receive