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that has been so recently settled, and will only say that I favor any policy that will conserve our forests and other resources of native raw material. I am for tariff for conservation, in the interest of saving the low grades of lumber. This subject has borne and always will bear investigation from time to time as conditions change. Conservation will not bring cheaper lumber, but it will help to regulate and keep a more even price. But trees, like everything else, will ultimately be worth what it costs to grow them. Conservation means the saving of trees and making trees worth saving. We must try to find a use for the “waste” which now has no market value. The farmer must practice conservation on his farm. He is wasting his soil which is a loss to the Nation. The average wheat crop of the United States is but 13 bushels per acre. Thirty years ago it was one-third greater. The average in Germany, where the land has been farmed for 500 years is over 30 bushels to the acre. Where the land is more valuable for farming than for tree culture, the forests disappear. Illinois once had 35 per cent of her land area in timber. She now has only 7 per cent in timber. Missouri originally had 55 per cent of her acreage in timber. She now has but 43 per cent, and she is now putting in drainage canals in the hardwood bottoms, where the land is being cleared for agriculture, and in a few years the State will have only about 35 per cent in timber. Relief from taxation, to those who will grow forests, and to those who will conserve the forests in wise use as manufacturers, is absolutely essential. As it is now, estates are not left in timbered lands on account of the uncertainty of taxation and the danger of fire and loss through storm and disease, because there has been no adequate system of fire patrol or system of forest care. But this condition is being improved. We do not find timbered estates handed
down to other generations. The owner prefers to realize on such an estate before he dies and reinvest in other securities.
After all, the question of conservation is largely one of profit and appeals to our selfish interest as well as to our spirit of philanthropy and public interest. Where saving pays, conservation succeeds. And I believe that the time is close at hand when there will be as good a profit in raising trees as there is now in raising the various agricultural crops, and this principle of crop-profit is what will determine the acreage of timber as well as the acreage of corn or cotton. And it will materially aid in determining what lands shall be set apart for permanent forest growth and what for rotative farm crops.
We believe in the definition and the motto of conservation: “The greatest good to the greatest number for the longest time.” (Applause.)
At the conclusion of Captain White's address the following messages were read:
Telegram from Nathan Straus, of New York.
Most important resource of Nation is its children. Conservation of child life requires prevention of milk-born diseases by pasteurizing all milk not proved free from tuberculosis and other infections. This would save thousands unnecessary deaths.
Telegram from Anson Phelps Stokes, Jr.
Professor Graves unable to attend Conservation meeting. Please present regrets of officers of Yale University at our inability to be represented. Yale is deeply interested in the work of Conservation.
Letter from James R. Garfield, of Cleveland, Ohio.
CLEveLAND, August 23, 1909. DEAR SIR:
I very much regret that I cannot accept the invitation to address the National Conservation Congress.
The importance of this meeting cannot be overestimated, as it should mark the beginning of a permanent organization for the systematic study of our natural resources, and an intelligent, vigorous effort to protect and conserve our resources against the aggression of the class of men who place private interests ahead of the public welfare.
Very truly yours,
JAMEs R. GARFIELD. Mr. R. W. Douglas,
c/o Washington Conservation Association, 1010 White Building, Seattle, Wash.
Letter from James J. Hill, of the Great Northern RailTelegram from J. C. Hays.
Your letter of the twenty-fourth ultimo duly received and noted.
It would give me great pleasure to be able to attend the Conservation Congress to be held at Seattle on the twenty-sixth to twenty-eighth of this month, but my time is so fully occupied with matters that demand my personal attention that it will be impossible for me to be on the Coast at the time mentioned.
There is no subject of greater interest to all the people of this country than the conservation of our natural resources, and the greatest of these is the fertility of the soil. The agricultural crop of the United States amounts this year to over eight billions of dollars which, by comparison, dwarfs all other interests. From the earliest settlement on the Atlantic Coast to practically the present time we have had a large public domain upon which surplus population could spread itself. Now this is all changed. The future prosperity of our country depends more upon the preservation and the fertility of the soil than upon all other sources of wealth combined.
It would be a great pleasure for me to be present at the Congress and to raise my voice in behalf of this work, and I greatly regret my inability to be present.
Thanking you sincerely for the kind invitation and with best wishes for a successful Congress, I am,
Visali A, CAL., August 26, 1909.
Regret exceedingly that my business prevents my attending Conservation Congress. I assure you that I have made every endeavor to be present, for in addition to the pleasure I had anticipated and the honor I feel had been bestowed upon me by being chosen to act as an associate delegate, I am of the firm opinion that the question of conservation of our natural resources is one of the most important subjects the engineering profession has to consider and a very grave responsibility is vested in all engineers having to do with the question.
J. C. HAYs.
The following paper was then presented:
CONSERVATION OF POWER THROUGH
RALPH. W. Pope, SECRETARY AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF ELECTRICAL ENGINEERS.
The title of this paper might be more definitely expressed by words “power transmission and distribution by electricity.”
In considering the function of electricity, in its relation to the conservation of our natural resources, the popular notion that it is in itself a source of energy must with our present knowledge be discarded. Although but now an agent for the distribution of energy, the future may reveal methods of generating electricity which will revolutionize our present practice, depending as we do upon steam, wind, or water power. Today we speak of the transmission of power by electricity, as one of its important uses, by reason of its application, for instance, to such important projects as the Niagara Falls development, but its first use in telegraphy of signaling was for the transmission of power in minute quantities.
The fire alarm telegraph system, invented in 1847, was almost immediately appreciated and was first introduced in Boston. When we consider the aggregate annual fire loss in the United States, it is safe to say that no other agency so efficiently guards our property from destruction by fire as does the fire alarm telegraph. The State of New York has recently established on different peaks of the Adirondack Mountains eight telephone stations with men on continuous duty, and organized a system of protection that enables the concentration of men and apparatus at any point of danger where a forest fire may have been started. The railroad authorities are also cooperating in this work.
In signaling work electricity has no rival, nor is there today any method of power transmission and distribution that can be seriously considered as a competitor. This being the case, we must admit at once that the function of electricity as a mere distributing agency places it just on the border-land of this great movement for the conservation of natural resources. The electrical engineer says “Furnish the power and I will generate the electric current, transmitting and distributing that energy in the form of light or power as may be required.” Just as the manufacturer is interested in the continuous supply of his raw material, so must the electrical engineer be interested in the basis of his particular industry, and this is a strong reason for supporting this conservation movement. In the matter of coal consumption alone, it has already been thoroughly demonstrated that electrical distribution of the water power from Niagara Falls has led to the industrial utilization of energy which would have required the annual burning of 1,000,000 tons of coal. The operation of the existing rapid transit railways in New York City would require the consumption of about 1,000,000 tons more than is now used, were steam supplied to locomotives instead of centralizing its generation in larger power stations as is now the practice.