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toward a wider and stronger govern- figure again, that year being 5,797,902

, mental control than could possibly tons, the figures including sail and have been anticipated a quarter of a steam, foreign, coastwise, lake and century before.

river, and fisheries. Various explanThe condition of the steam railroads ations of this condition have been of the country in the first decade of the offered — the protective tariff, interTwentieth century is shown in the fol- nal revenue taxation, manufacturing lowing summary:*

and railroad demands upon capital, With the close of the Civil War it and the competition with a subsidized was natural to expect that our mer- foreign marine. The question of chant marine would quickly return to free ships ”— that is, the admission the condition of prosperity which it to American registry of Americanhad known before 1860. Shipbuilding owned iron ships built abroad — and had been considerably stimulated by the question of mail subsidy to Amerthe demands of the war. The mer

ican ocean steamships were in agitachant marine, ships and sailors, were tion before the public mind and in drawn into the service of National de

Congress in the first years of the new fense, and naturally commerce was de

century, and they seem as far from stroyed. A great fighting fleet was

solution now as they were in 1890. created and at the end of the war

In the meantime the United States the United States owned 600 war

did not stand still in ship-building. steamships. Engineering skill was

Although iron ship-building was morinot lacking; the shipyards were better

bund in 1875, it revived before the end equipped than ever before in material,

of the century. In 1901 the average in experience and in workmen; and

output of American ship-yards was

1,491 vessels of 468,831 gross tons. commerce with the world was revived. But the American merchant marine

American shipping engaged in foreign

trade that year aggregated 879,595 did not reinstate itself. Foreign trade which had been diverted to foreign

tons. This was in excess of any of the bottoms did not return. In 1861 our

preceding six years, but less than that

of 1891, 1892, 1893, and 1894 -- the merchant marine tonnage was 5,539,

last year, with its tonnage of 988,719,

, 831; not until 1902 did it reach that

leading the decade.

Our domestic shipping outdistanced * Taken from Poor's Manual of the Railroads of the United States, 1910 and 1911, introduction. our merchant marine engaged in forMileage Locomotives Capital stock Gross earnings

eign trade during this period. In 1906 the number of vessels engaged in water transportation in the United States was 37,321, with a tonnage of 12,893,429, as against 30,485 vessels,

1902 1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908 1909 1910 1911

and cars 199, 684 1.511,039 206.885 1.662,980 211,074 1,731,049 214,044 1,798, 434 218,433 2, C25, 858 224, 382 1, 131,487 230.084 2, 224, 263 236, 377 2, 230,018 239,991 2,318, 778 244,089 2,408, 589

$6,078, 290,596 $1,720, 814,900 6,355, 207, 335 1,908,857,826 6.447,045, 374 1,977,638, 713 6,741,956, 825 2, 112, 197,770 7, 106, 408,976 2, 16, 640, 286 7,458, 126,785 2,602, 757, 503 7,611,913,086 2.407,019,810 8,030.680, 963 2.513,212,763 8,380,819, 190 2,804,580, 939 8,582, 463, 256 2,848, 468,965

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with a tonnage of 8,359,135 in 1889. 100 per cent., Sweden with 200 per The shipping of the Great Lakes in cent., Denmark with over 350 per cent., 1906 was 2,900 vessels, of 2,392,863 ton- Holland with 160 per cent., and Gernage; of the Atlantic Coast and Gulf many with nearly 355 per cent. of Mexico, coastwise and foreign, 20,- For urban passenger transporta032 vessels, of 4,851,421 tonnage; of tion, street car lines were installed in

, the Pacific Coast, 2,537 vessels, of 977,- all the cities and large towns of the 687 tonnage; of the Mississippi and country after 1860. This service is its tributaries, 9,622 vessels, of 4,411, along the streets by elevated, surface 967 tonnage.

and subway lines. A short elevated

A In 1909 the total tonnage of our railway was built in New York City in merchant marine was 7,388,755, the 1867, but it did not become the establargest since 1870, and an increase lished system of that city before 1872. over that year of 3,194,015, or over 40 Subsequently elevated railway lines per cent. Of this gross amount for were erected in Brooklyn (New York), 1909, the tonnage engaged in foreign Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, and trade was 878,523, of which 575,276 other cities. was steam; in coasting, 6,451,042, of A street railway, with cars drawn which 4,151,557 was steam; in fish- by horses, was operated in New York eries, 59,190. In 1910 there was a still City in 1831-32, but not until 1852 were further advance, the gross tonnage of

other lines of this character conthat year being 7,508,082, of which 6,- structed in the metropolis. Horse-car 668,963 was coastwise, 782,517 foreign, street railways appeared in Boston in and 56,602 fisheries. These figures

These figures 1856, in Philadelphia in 1857, and show a growth in our coastwise mer

within the next 25 years in nearly all chant marine and a decided falling off the large cities of the country. Street from 1860 in our tonnage engaged in railways operated by underground foreign trade. In 1860 our gross ton

cable were first built in San Francisco nage,, coastwise and foreign, was 5,- in 1873 and 1876, and afterward (in 353,865, of which 2,379,396 (or nearly 1882) in Chicago, Philadelphia, New one-half) was engaged in foreign York, and many other cities. In 1893 trade. In 1870 the United States was there were over 70 cable street railsecond in the tonnage of its merchant way lines in the United States, with marine only to Great Britain. During about 700 miles of trackage. After the 40 years following, that relative 1890, by the introduction of electricity standing did not change, but in per- as a motor power for street railways, centage increase the United States, the cable was rapidly displaced. with its 44 per cent increase, fell be- Within seven years its mileage had hind Great Britain with 170 per cent.,

fallen off more than one-half. France with 80 per cent., Norway with

The first electric railroad was built VOL. X – 25

by Thomas A. Edison at Menlo Park, distances was also under serious conNew Jersey, and in 1888 an actual test sideration, with unreserved prediction of the electric system was made in

of ultimate success. In New York, Richmond, Virginia. Immediately Boston, and Chicago extensive sysafter, the street railway lines of Bos- tems of subways were built to suppleton and Philadelphia were electrified, ment the street car lines in meeting and within three years nearly every

the increasing travel demands of the large city of the country had its over- congested centres of population.* head trolley lines. In 1890 the electric

* Rowland Hazard, The Crédit Mobilier of street car lines had 1,261 miles of

America (Providence, 1888); Arthur T. Hadley, trackage; the cable lines, 488 miles; Railroad Transportation, Its History and Its

Laws (New York, 1885); W. J. Abbott, American the horse car lines, 5,661 miles; and

Ships and Sailors (New York, 1902); Charles the steam power lines, 711 miles. The Francis Adams, Jr., Railroads, Their Origin and

Problems (Boston, 1871); John P. Davis, The capital stock of all these lines was

Union Pacific Railway (Chicago, 1894); J. L. $163,506,444. In 1894 the total mile- Ringwalt, Development of Transportation in the

United States (Philadelphia, 1888); A. P. C. age was: electric, 10,363; cable, 632;

Griffin, List of References on Mercantile Marine horse, 1,914; miscellaneous, 679; total, Subsidies and List of References Relating to Rail13,588. At that time there were

roads in Their Relations to the Government and

the Public (Library of Congress, Washington, nearly 1,000 street railways in opera- 1903 and 1904); Report of the United States Intion, with a capital stock of $748,014,

dustrial Commission (19 vols., Washington,

1900-02); Edwin A. Pratt, American Railroads 206. In 1907 the number of street and

(New York, 1903); Emory R. Johnson, American electric railways was 1,238, the mile- Railroad Transportation and Ocean and Island

Transportations (New York, 1903 and 1906); W. age 38,812, the capital stock of the cor

L. Marvin, The American Merchant Marine (New porations $2,251,425,882, and their York, 1902); Henry Fry, History of North Atfunded debt $1,872,408,516. Electric

lantic Steam Navigation (New York, 1896);

William W. Bates, The American Marine, Its fication of steam railroads began in Rise and Ruin (Boston, 1902), and The American this decade. Notable examples of this Marine, The Shippers' Question in History and

Politics (Boston, 1893); David A. Wells, Our change from steam to electricity were

Merchant Marine (New York, 1887); W. T. Dunseen in the New York City suburban more, Ship Subsidies (Boston, 1907); Poor's

Manual of the Railroads of the United States service of the New York Central, the

(New York, 1865-1912); census reports, 1870New York, New Haven and Hartford, 1910; The Statistical Abstract (Washington, and the Long Island railroads. The

1900–1910); monthly and yearly reports of Com

merce and Finance issued by the Bureau of Staproblem of electrification over long tistics, Treasury Department (Washington).

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The advent of the telegraph Its early development — The first American-British Atlantic cable

The expansion and consolidation of the telegraph business The spread of Atlantic and Pacific cables Perfection of the telegraph and its importance in modern business — The advent of the Bell telephone Rival telephone systems and companies — Rural telephones — Present extent of the telephone — The wireless telegraph.

In the closing years of the Nine- this country, the years immediately teenth century and after the telegraph following the Civil War were particuand telephone came to rival all previ- larly noteworthy for the gradual conous instrumentalities for bringing the solidation of the various companies country together in social and busi- into larger, more compact, and more ness unity. They constituted, with the serviceable corporations, the perfect

. railroads, a trio that revolutionized ing of the trans-Atlantic cable system, modern life in all of its branches of and the improvement of the transactivity. At the outset there was in- continental line. The feverish haste of tense rivalry between the two systems promoters and contractors to preëmpt of communication. As the time went unoccupied territory continued with on, however, it was realized that one little, if any, interruption; and the supplemented the other and that the demands of the country and the world two, together, worked most efficiently. for the service grew every year. The telegraph was well established Hence scores of new companies (some nearly 25 years before the telephone of them of minor importance and came into existence, but the younger others of strong character and great invention surpassed its rival in public aims) were organized. favor before the end of the century. In 1865 the International Ocean It came into wider and more public use Telegraph Company was organized to than its predecessor, occupying an en- lay cables to the islands of the West tirely new field, creating and meeting Indies and thence to Central America, new needs.

South America, and under the AtIn the history of the telegraph in lantic to Madeira and Lisbon. This

was the beginning of an important exPrepared for this History by Herbert N. Cas

tension of a service which was abson, author of American Telegraph and Telephone Systems, etc.

sorbed eight years later by the West




ern Union Company. In 1866 came the Western Union and the Postal the Pacific and Atlantic to connect the Telegraph-Cable companies. In 1901 leading cities of the North and South, the Western Union had 193,589 miles from New York and Boston to New of pole and cables, 972,766 miles of Orleans and San Francisco. Several

Several wire, and 23,238 offices; the Postal small companies

organized Telegraph Cable had 43,850 miles of within the next two or three years in pole and cables, 243,423 miles of wire, Pennsylvania and the South to be and 14,870 offices. In 1904 there were feeders of the Pacific and Atlantic in the United States over 250,000 miles trunk line. In 1869 the Southern and of pole and cable, 1,250,000 miles of Atlantic connected New York and

New York and wire, and 40,000 offices. The public Washington with Southern cities, but, sent upward of 70,000,000 messages, within a few years, this, as well as the for which it paid over $30,000,000. Pacific and Atlantic, was absorbed by These figures show to what astounding the growing giant, the Western Union. proportions this business had grown In 1879 came the American Union in sixty years. But the increase in the Company, established by Jay Gould next few years was even more remarkto overthrow the Western Union. It able. In 1911 the Western Union had had the advantage of running its wires 1,487,345 miles of wire and the Postal along the lines of the railroads owned 390,139. There were nearly 50,000 or controlled by Gould and his asso- offices in the country, which transciates. But in two years it went the mitted over 90,000,000 messages. way of the others, and in 1881 became A second American British Atlantic part of the Western Union system. cable was laid in 1866, a third from

In 1885 there were 217 companies Ireland to Newfoundland in 1874, and in the country, of which the Western a fourth from Ireland to a terminus on Union, controlling two-thirds of the the coast of New Hampshire in 1875. wire mileage, was the principal. This The cable of 1866 was a permanent supremacy had been brought about success and the problem of telegraph largely by the merging of the Ameri- communication between the two concan Union and the Atlantic and Pacific tinents was completely solved by that companies in 1881. The lines of the

The lines of the enterprise and those that closely folNew York Mutual Telegraph Com- lowed. During the next quarter of a pany, the Baltimore and Ohio Rail- century Atlantic cables between North way Telegraph, the American Rapid America and Europe became almost Telegraph, and the Northwestern

Northwestern commonplace. Among the great lines Telegraph companies had also been of that period was the commercial taken over.

At the opening of the cable, laid in 1883 and 1884 from Ireį Twentieth century the telegraph busi- land to Cape Canso and thence to

ness of the country was controlled by Rockport, Massachusetts and Coney


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