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barked upon a policy which has for its end the perpetuity of our own State's resources on land and water. Led by the Maryland Geographical Survey, this movement has assumed tangible form and has the patronage of the State government and the endorsement of the whole people. We are surveying our tracts of timber lands, guarding sedulously our rich coal and mineral deposits, draining our swamp areas and protecting our Water courses. We are awakening to the natural wealth of our hills and lowlands and are recognizing that a guardianship must be extended over it lest greed and waste rob us of our heritage. This is Maryland's contribution to your movement and is in keeping with our conviction that reform should begin at home. What we are doing here we want to encourage abroad. Maryland cannot live unto itself alone. The resources of one State add to the plenty of its neighbors and the natural bounty of them all constitutes the nation's wealth and is the basis for the nation's hope of future greatness. The people of this State look to the National Conservation Congress for enduring results. The East gladly joins hands with the West to promote our common welfare through the conservation of the resources of all sections of our common country, and I bespeak the fullest cooperation of the people of Maryland in your movement.
I beg to be,
There is, to my mind, no subject more important for the welfare of this great republic of ours than that of preserving for future generations the great natural advantages which nature has so bountifully bestowed upon us. And it is not too soon to begin to make our preservation effective.
Has it ever struck you that the whole question of conservation is a moral and an educational question? In looking up the definition of the word I found this explanation given to it: “The act of preserving, maintaining, supPorting or protecting.” The conservation of energy is a principle based on the general one, that energy communicated to a body or system of bodies is never lost. Now, this is what I am trying to do to the limit of my ability; to communicate to the boys and girls of today energy by educating them and finding means to best instil the necessity for their taking an interest in these great questions, and also to realize what we are trying to do for them. The boy of seventeen today instructed in national and private thrift by illustrations taken from life is greatly impressed. We have demonstrated this beyond any question. It is only a matter of four years before this boy is a voter. Then he can realize what we are trying to do for him. Our noble friend, Gifford Pinchot, who has devoted his life to this object unselfishly and with a devotion seldom equalled, is entitled to additional credit from the fact that he is not working for even his own children. I am sorry he is not. In the recent work in advancing the conservation programme, it may barely be possible that in some small technical legal point our good friend may be wrong; but, never mind this, the principle for which he is working is right. And, after all, when a leader is working for principle and justice, justice above everything, every good man ought to add his help. One act of justice in the protection of the interests of the people is of far more value than many philanthropic gifts. I heard an address a few days ago in which the speaker, alluding to what was being done in the way of the conservation of our great recources, made the criticism that we “reformers were working in a circle.” I could not help thinking that this circle in which we seem to be working, returning again and again to difficulties that must be overcome (some small, technical legal point, or the opposition of men who have large personal interests to serve), is in reality a spiral, and every time we get around to this point we have risen a little and accomplished something.
There is a determined effort made by some men to secure for their own personal advantages the resources of the country, particularly the water powers. Do not let us sit down and blame these men; they are working for their own personal interests, many of them, in accordance with their moral standards, feel that they are doing right. The general feeling is, “If we do not get these advantages, some one will.” But let us prevent it. This is our duty to our fellow citizen and to the future generations of this country. I want at this time to speak of the work that the Inland Waterways Commission is doing. I have been asked to address this meeting in the coming Fall. I want to make our recommendation to them, and that is, that they take up the question of protecting the inland waterways from control by the competing railways. No nation has ever been blessed with such grand opportunities of water transportation as our country. Yet, what advantage do we get from it? It is a universally established fact that the cost of one mile of rail transportation per ton per mile is as great as three miles of water transportation. I am thoroughly familiar with the conditions existing on our Eastern coast lines, and I do not know of a single instance where the people of the coast have the advantage, given them by nature, of water transportation, but in every instance the steamship line is controlled by a competitive railway. This ought not to be, and Congress should pass a bill preventing the control of the water routes by competitive railroads. And further, some regulation should be made of the rates, so that, as has been the case two or three times, when the merchants and shippers of a community have endeavored to put on a line of steamers, the competitive railroads have named such low rates as to crush the water transportation. The railroads should not be allowed to reduce their rates for this purpose, nor should the water lines be allowed to make such low rates as would injure the railroads. Congress should control the making of a fair division of this traffic between the water and the rail routes, and thus give to our people the advantages which nature gave them. If the Inland Waterways Commission is successful in securing help to improve the navigation of many of our rivers, they should first secure from Congress the control of the railroad competition with these routes. President Roosevelt inaugurated this magnificent movement, prompted by our friend Pinchot; and I feel sure if any man in this United States of America today will honestly carry out in a calm, judicial, thorough way the protection of the interests of the people it will be President Taft.
ALEXANDER MACKIE, CALIFORNIA:
Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen:
California, the land of fruit and flowers, sunshine and vast natural resources, sends greetings to our sister State, Washington, the rising young giant of the great Northwest and also to the delegates from other parts of our resourcefu country.
What is Conservation doing for my State, California? The principal thing at present is the awakening conscience of the people all over the State for the simple life, to break away from the thraldom of politicians and the attending evils, monopoly and trusts, and a coming back to righteousness, truth, and honor in public affairs. We are therefore in a receptive mood to entertain the great national ideas of Roosevelt and Taft and other unselfish and patriotic men and to conserve the wonderful resources of our great country.
California is now claiming her natural resources for her people, conserving the water from the mountains to feed the plains for irrigation, for a public water system for her cities, for working her mines, or in other words, utilizing and conserving the great natural resources of the State for the benefit of the people.
California is also conserving her waterways and harbors and retaining for her citizens the free use of these utilities for the benefit of the commerce of the world. The foremost advocate of these things is and has been my good friend, former Governor Pardee, of Oakland, Cal.
California congratulates Seattle on her wonderful progress and possibilities and in having a Mayor who is also in touch with the moral and religious sentiment of the community, as when he picked out a minister of the Gospel to invoke the blessings of Almighty God on this Convention. California unites with her sister States in wishing Godspeed to the great and fundamental principles of conservation. (Great applause.)
RALPH. W. Pope, NEw JERSEY.
Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen:
One of the pleasantest features of this movement for the conservation of natural resources is the hold it has taken on the people of the West and far West, who have been heretofore brought up with the idea that our resources were inexhaustible. The State I am pleased to represent, although I am a volunteer, has gone from agriculture to trade and manufacture. I was very, very much pleased at the Governors’ conference at Washington to find that our Governor had not only appointed a commission but that work was actually being done in the preservation of the forests