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past thirty or forty years from floods in the Ohio River would probably pay for a full system of storage dams and other engineering works to control and regulate flood water in the chief tributaries of the Ohio, so that disasters could be prevented, while a navigable depth could be maintained at the period of exceptional low water. The cities and States contiguous to the Ohio River would themselves profit greatly from a joint investment that would carry out some maturely planned engineering scheme. The Mississippi, all the way from Minneapolis to the Gulf, can and should be so regulated as to provide for constant navigation.
The New Commission.
There are many other points of interest besides those of navigation and protection against floods that the President in his letter associates with his scheme of river improvement and regulation. The Hon. Theodore E. Burton, of Ohio, long the chairman of the Rivers and Harbors Committee of the House of Representatives, is named by the President as chairman of this new waterways board. Senators Newlands, of Nevada, and Warner, of Missouri, are appointed, and also the Hon. John H. Bankhead, of Alabama, who is an authority on Mississippi River questions. Other members are General Mackenzie, chief of the War Department Engineers; Dr. W J McGee, the geologist and geographer; Mr. F. H. Newell, director of the Reclamation Service; Mr. Gifford Pinchot, Chief Forester, and Mr. Herbert Knox Smith, Commissioner of Corporations.
The appropriation for rivers and and harbors as finally made at the Harbor Bill. end of the last Congress amounted to about $87,000,000. It is a mistake to regard the recent work of Congress in studying this question and making appropriations as futile or improper. In times past a great deal of money was spent wastefully upon small projects of improvement through log-rolling demands; but the more recent river and harbor measures have been in accordance with intelligent work done by the army engineers and conscientious and able efforts on the part of Mr. Burton and members of the committees of both houses. It has always been our view that a great deal more would be accomplished if a plan were adopted under which States and localities would be expected to contribute a part of the cost.
work over to contractors at the present time. But before our March issue had reached the hands of its readers circumstances had arisen which obliged the President to make a change and to accept Mr. Stevens's resignation. He was a meritorious engineer and had served very usefully. But, fortunately, there was nothing in the situation which rendered it in any manner difficult for another competent engineer to step in and take his place. It was decided at Washington that the proper thing would be to appoint an army engineer, and Lieut.-Col. George W. Goethals was accordingly selected. Two other army engineers were at the same time chosen as members of the commission,-namely, Majors David DuB. Gaillard and William L. Sibert. All three of these able officers have had great
The closing session of the Fiftyninth Congress appropriated not far from a thousand million dollars. The growth in public expenditure has been rapid, but certainly not more rapid than that of the country's resources and its private expenditures. When subjected to analysis, the appropriations do not seem unreasonable. Not much was expected in the direction of general legislation. Yet some valuable measures were passed. The country will observe rather curiously what effect will come from the change in the law regarding denatured alcohol. As passed at the former session, the law made it practically impossible for farmers and small concerns to distill this form of cheap fuel on their own account. As now altered, the law permits such manufacture. It is claimed that some very remarkable consequences may ensue. It will make more difference than most people are aware to have in force the new law which limits the num
Copyright, 1907, by Clinedinst, Washington.
LIEUT.-COL. GEORGE W. GOETHALS, NOW AT HEAD OF PANAMA COMMISSION.
experience in river and harbor work, and either of his associates would be competent to take Major Goethals' place in case of his illness or retirement. There has been a good deal of newspaper comment upon the frequent changes in the Canal Commission, but nothing has happened which has not been progressive, and nothing has hurt the continuity of the work. There has been widespread approval of the plan of putting the army engineers in charge. Theirs is the habit of serving the country with the highest skill and no thought of glory or especial reward. Meanwhile another addition has been made to the canal board in the person of the Hon. Joseph C. S. Blackburn, of Kentucky, whose term in the United States Senate expired on March 4. Mr. Blackburn does not belong to the President's party, but he is a public man of great experience and broad views, whose membership in the commission can doubtless be made useful on many accounts. Mr. Jackson Smith, who has been chief of the labor department, is made a full commissioner. The work will be pushed with energy, and it will remain to be seen whether contracts should be let or not.
HON. J. C. S. BLACKBURN, OF KENTUCKY. (Appointed a Panama Commissioner.)
ber of hours of continuous service that railroads may require from locomotive engineers and other train employees. Another enactment in the interest of social welfare is the measure for the investigation of the employment of women and children which is to be made under the direction of the Secretary of Commerce and Labor. The child-labor bill did not come to a vote, but it will be dealt with in the next Congress. The meat in
spection law is so changed as to require the packers to print on the labels the dates when meats were canned or otherwise prepared for sale. The immigration bill is a measure of very considerable importance, and its provisions are elsewhere explained in this number of the REVIEW in an article which we have secured from Mr. William S. Rossiter. Our readers will remember his remarkable article in last month's REVIEW, entitled "Why We Need the Immigrant."
From the standpoint of immeEnactments diate public policy, the most imof Importance. portant feature of the immigration act is the amendment to it under which the President may exclude immigrants from countries issuing passports. It means that Japan issues no passport to laborers to come to the United States, and the President may exclude Japanese laborers whose passports name some other country of destination. This method has been found to put into practical effect what is evidently going to be the permanent policy of the United States, namely, the prevention of the coming in
large numbers to this country of Asiatic la- Copyright, 1907, by National Press Association, Washington. borers, whether Chinese or of other nation
HON. JOHN C. SPOONER, OF WISCONSIN. (After long and brilliant service as a leading Senator and statesman at Washington, Mr. Spooner has resigned his seat and retired to the practice of law.)
ality. At last the long-demanded service pension for veterans of the civil war has been placed upon the statute books. To state the terms of the act in brief, it is merely to be said that any veteran, when he reaches the age of 62, who had served ninety days in the army, may receive a pension of $12 a month, regardless of the question whether or not he is in need, or is disabled by reason of his war service. The amount is increased to $15 a month at the age of seventy, and to $20 a month after the age of seventy-five. The pension bill for the coming year amounts to about $146,000,000. The currency act is not of a radical character, but it removes certain restrictions. Heretofore the Secretary of the Treasury could deposit in the banks of the country moneys collected from internal revenue sources, but not those from customs. The new law permits the Secretary to distribute all public money at his discretion. This will make it possible to keep larger sums in circulation at times of business demand. The new act much increases the amount of circulating notes that the banks may retire monthly. Originally the restriction was intended
prevent contraction of the currency. But it worked the other way, interfering with easy expansion. The banks will issue larger volumes of circulating notes when there is demand for money, if it is made easy for them to retire these notes when the demand slackens. Congress was rather timid about passing the bill increasing the future salaries of members of the two houses from $5000 a year to $7500. It was a proper measure and the country approves of it. The disapproval of a salary increase on a certain occasion many years ago was due to the fact that it gave back pay to the men passing the bill. The increased cost of living at Washington has proved a hardship to public servants.
MR. ANDREW CARNEGIE.
(Who is especially prominent this month by reason of several important occasions.)
On Behalf of Peace and Order.
The ratification of the treaty with San Domingo, under which our Government may exercise certain financial control, is a matter of great importance and will have future consequences that will make for peace and order in the West Indies. The Algeciras treaty also was duly confirmed. The ship-subsidy bill was not enacted. Provision was made for two battleships much larger than any now in our navy. Our confirmation of the Algeciras treaty, our valuable work of an international character in San Domingo, our protection of all interests, foreign and domestic, in Cuba, and our varying successes as peacemaker in Central America, together with our fortunate removal of all danger of strain with Japan, and our progress in negotiations with the Dominion and Great Britain, are some of the matters which will give us enhanced prestige at The Hague when the second great congress of the nations meets there in the early summer. It can be shown that since the first Hague Conference we have done a good deal to promote the cause of international peace. Besides Mr. Choate, General Porter, and Judge Rose, we shall be represented at The Hague by Mr. Hill, our Minister to Holland, and Mr. Buchanan, who was chairman of our delegation at the recent Pan-American Conference at Rio. Gen. G. B. Davis and Rear-Admiral Sperry will represent us as military and naval experts.
Meanwhile, the unofficial groups Institu- and organizations that are espetions. cially interested in the cause of peace will hold what is called the national Arbitration and Peace Congress at New York, on the 14th day of the present month. It will be under the presidency of Mr. Andrew Carnegie, and many distinguished foreigners will attend. On April 11, Mr. Carnegie will assemble at Pittsburg a number of notable guests who will participate in the opening of the new buildings of the Carnegie Institute. An account of the wonderful institution Mr. Carnegie has been building up at Pittsburg has more than once been presented to the readers of this magazine. Elsewhere in the present number of the REVIEW we present an article from the pen of the well-known artist and critic, Mr. Frank Fowler, who writes of the Carnegie Institute from the artistic standpoint. The Greater Pittsburg has its chief center of attraction in the splendid library, gallery, and museum that Mr. Carnegie has provided.
will be seventy next year. These and many other men of great intellectual activity and public usefulness are showing that old age need not arrive until long after the period of three score and ten. There has been much comment of late upon the continued strength and brilliancy of the writings of Prof. Goldwin Smith, who is in his eighty-fourth
Mr. Carnegie will be seventy and Others years old next November, and he was never at any time more vigorous of mind or more actively and influentially concerned with affairs of large signifiEx-President Cleveland was seventy years old on the 18th of March. He is a great favorite in the university town of Princeton. As our only living ex-President, year. Dr. Edward Everett Hale is a little he maintains in the country's regard and respect a very lofty position. President Eliot, of Harvard, was seventy-three last month; Mark Twain is in his seventy-second year, and Mr. Bryce, the new British Ambassador,
older. Senator Allison is seventy-seven; President Diaz and the Emperor FrancisJoseph are seventy-six, and, in short, the list of active and prominent personages between the ages of seventy and eighty is a long one.