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PARAGRAPHS 453-459_LEATHER GLOVES.
TARIFF ON GLOVES.
The specific duty on men's gloves is $4 per dozen pairs; in addition to this 40 centa per dozen is charged for gloves sown picque or prixseam; also 40 cents if the backs are embroidered with three or more single strands or cords. This makes all men's gloves practically $4.80 per dozen (no extra duty for overseam stitching).
On women's not over 14 inches long the specific duty per dozen is $3.80 and 40 cents per dozen extra for picque or prixseam stitching, and 40 cents for three or more single strands or cords on the back, making all women's gloves practically $3.80 per dozen.
There is no extra charge on the above where there is overseam stitching.
On women's lamb gloves, not over 14 inches long, the specific duty is $2.50 per dozen, and 40 cents per dozen pairs extra for picque or prixseam stitching (no extra duty for overseam stitching), and 40 cents per dozen pairs extra for three strands or cords on the backs, making women's lamb gloves practically $3.30.
The suggestion which has been made by many of the manufacturers and importers, and which we think would meet with no opposition whatever, is the following:
To reduce the tariff on women's gloves under 14 inches in length and on men's gloves in the following manner:
To eliminate the extra charge of 40 cents per dozen pairs for picque and prixseam and the extra charge of 40 cents for three strands on the back.
This will remove from the tariff two items which have been constant causes for contention and litigation, as there is always a question as to what constitutes the three strands on the back.
There is also the suggestion that the specific duty on gloves is a better measure of protection than the ad valorem duty. When we had ad valorem duty, the under valuations were numerous and the Government had no means of protecting its interests. It also drove out of the business many importers, who would not resort to the means employed by the German, Italian, and French manufacturers.
There were many suits brought by the Government while the ad valorem duty was in existence. Many importers found it to their advantage to buy imported gloves in New York, as they could buy them cheaper here than they could import the gloves themselves, on account of the undervaluations made by unprincipled firms.
In fact, this is what caused the change from “ad valorem to specific.
The suggestion also is that on women's gloves of 20 inches and upward in length, the high rates that are prevailing might remain.
We think that it should make no difference what kind of stitching is put on gloves, or what kind of strands are on the back, as it is only a glove.
There are three kinds of stitching on gloves : Picque, prixseam, and overseam. There is an extra duty of 40 cents per dozen pairs on the first two and none on the
Paragraph 452 provides articles manufactured of leather, 40 per cent ad valorem. This portion of the paragraph is frustrated by what follows:
"On any articles permanently fitted and furnished with traveling, bottle, drinking, dining, or luncheon and similar sets 50 per cent ad valorem.”'
This last paragraph only furnishes contention and litigation. The words "similar sets” are so ambiguous that we have been compelled to pay 50 per cent unjustly on many articles. We ask that whatever duties you make on leather goods be established and made clear and distinct, so that we are not compelled to protest every shipment, as we are now doing.
The tariff on the Dingley bill was 35 per cent on manufactures of leather, bags, cardcases, pocketbooks, etc., and on the Payne-Aldrich bill they have practically added 15 per cent to it.
Paragraph 450 in regard to harness, saddles, and saddlery says 20 per cent ad valorem.
Paragraph 461 makes it 35 per cent ad valorem, so that it has been a matter of contention between us and the customhouse why they should have these two duties.
Paragraph 475 provides for smokers' articles, 60 per cent ad valorem, so that when we make a leather cigarette or cigar case it is charged 60 per cent duty. We think this duty excessive.
PARAGRAPHS 453-459-LEATHER GLOVES.
RESOLUTIONS OF THE JOHNSTOWN (N. Y.) BOARD OF TRADE.
JOHNSTOWN, N. Y., February 10, 1913. Hon. Oscar W. UNDERWOOD,
Washington, D. C. Dear Sir: Your attention is directed to a resolution of the board of trade of the city of Johnstown, Fulton County, N. Y., of which the following is a copy. Yours very truly,
Secretary Board of Trade. Whereas, the Democratic Party declared, in its platform of 1912, for a revision of the tariff, but recognized that the system of tariff taxation is intimately connected with the business of the country and favored the ultimate attainment of the principles advocated by legislation that would not injure or destroy legitimate industry, and
Whereas, it is understood to be the purpose the Ways and Means Committee to draft and present, for the consideration of a special session of the Congress to be convened after March 4, 1913, a tariff measure which will provide for competitive rates of tariff duties, to the end that the importation of articles of foreign manufacture will not be prohibited but that articles of foreign manufacture may compete in the domestic market with those of American manufacture and that the necessary revenue will be secured to the Government, and
Whereas, there are located in Fulton County, N. Y., 154 separate concerns manufacturing leather gloves, of which concerns 53 are located in the city of Johnstown, Fulton County, N. Y., and
Whereas, the glove and leather industries are practically the only industries located in said county and said city and directly and indirectly furnish livelihood to practically the entire population of said county, which is approximately 50,000, and
Whereas, under the present tariff duties on men's leather gloves it has been possible for these concerns to manufacture men's leather dress gloves and compete in the domestic market with those of foreign manufacture and pay to resident labor American rates of wages, but under the present tariff duties on women's leather gloves it has been impossible for said concerns to manufacture women's leather dress gloves and so compete, with the result that a very small proportion of women's leather gloves are manufactured in said county or in the United States, and
Whereas, of the said 154 separate concerns there are more than 85 per cent rated at less than $50,000 by R. G. Dun & Co. in their Mercantile Agency Reference Book for July, 1912, and 35 per cent thereof are rated therein at less than $3,000, and
Whereas, there are in all 377 separate factories engaged in the business of manufacturing gloves, mittens, and gauntlets, as shown by the Census of Manufacturers for 1909, of which there are 458 proprietors and firm members and fully 80 per cent of which factories are owned and operated by individuals or copartnerships and not by corporations, and Whereas, there are no leather dress gloves exported, and
Whereas, there is no concentrated ownership or monopoly in the manufacture of leather gloves in the United States and the industry is highly competitive, and
Whereas, the board of trade of the said city of Johnstown, Fulton County, N. Y., believes it to be vital to the interests of the entire population of the said city and of the said county that leather dress gloves shall continue to be manufactured therein and believes that any substantial reduction in the present tariff rates on men's leather gloves would be prohibitive to the continuance of that industry in the United States and that in equity the present rates on women's leather gloves should be increased so as to permit their manufacture in the United States,
Now, therefore, the board of trade of the city of Johnstown, Fulton County, N. Y., respectfully urges that the Ways and Means Committee of the House of Representatives give its careful consideration to the facts concerning the manufacture of leather gloves and incorporate in the tariff measure to be prepared and presented to Congress such rates of tariff duties upon both men's and women's leather gloves as will be competitive and permit their manufacture in the United States and thereby p rmit its one industry to survive for the support of the population of the said city of Johnstown and the said county of Fulton, N. Y.
PARAGRAPHS 453-459-LEATHER GLOVES.
BRIEF OF THE HENRY M. PEYSER CO., BOSTON, MASS.
Boston, January 28, 1913. Hon. Oscar W. UNDERWOOD,
Chairman Ways and Means Committee, Washington, D. C. Dear Sir: Regarding the duty or tariff on women's leather gloves. At the many hearings before previous committees of both Houses, Congress, Senate, and conference committees, it has been shown or testified to:
That the foreign labor cost to make any glove, whether made of so-called Schmaschen, lamb or kid skins (no matter where made, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, or elsewhere abroad), is between 8 to 10 marks per dozen in Germany and 10 to 12 francs in France, or in American money at the outside $2.40 per dozen.
The duty on leather gloves under all specific tariffs has discriminated between the different leathers used, which has nothing to do with the labor cost, but such discrimination does play a role in favor of the foreign skin or leather merchant, as for example: The present tariff showed a reduction of $0.50 per dozen on gloves made of Schmaschen-consequently Schmaschen gloves were advanced about 2 marks per dozen in Europe and at the present time, owing no doubt to the general belief or likelihood that the new administration will make some reductions in glove schedule under same classifications, Schmaschen gloves are advancing in price. The facts are that for a period of 25 years Schmaschen gloves have sold here for about the same money, and that is primarily because of our discriminating tariff as between leathers, and I venture to say, that should the new schedule allow Schmaschen gloves to come in free that the price of same would immediately advance in Europe so that landed here they would cost as much as at present, or in other words, the foreign leather merchant, not the glove manufacturer, would get the full benefit of our reduction in tariff.
I would respectfully submit for the consideration of the Ways and Means Committee, through you, that a fair, equitable, and collectable duty on all leather gloves would be $2 per dozen, no matter from what leather made. In such case a merchant could and would buy gloves abroad for what the gloves were worth and not, as at present, where he is obliged to buy preferentials in tariff. Under a straight flat duty of $2 or even $2.50 per dozen on all leather gloves under 14 inches extreme length, and $3 or $3.50 for longer lengths. A merchant would then buy his gloves practically regardless of the tariff. That is, he would buy the best he could find for the money and his cost landed here in every case would be just plus the duty and he would not be concerned regarding any classification as to the origin of the leather.
It might be argued by some that it would be unfair to the poor to exact as much duty on low-grade gloves as on the best, but, in practice, they would not pay as much, as no merchants would buy a Schmaschen glove and pay as much as he does (as now in many instances) for Lambs because of the difference of $1.25 per dozen in duty. In other words, Schmaschen would have to come down or they would not sell to the United States. Free trade England use very few Schmaschen gloves, because they have no discriminating tariff of a difference of $1.25 per dozen in favor of Schmaschen, but do buy a better goods for the price United States pays for Schmaschen. In other words, a straight flat duty as suggested would put the United States on practically a free-trade basis, plus $2 or $2.50 per dozen, and the leather merchant would be obliged to sell low grades glove leather to meet competition and not as now, be able to hold up or advance same according as our tariff would discriminate.
On men's leather gloves the present duty is almost prohibitory. Imports will bear this out. Yours, very truly,
John A. Ross, Manager.
BRIEF OF MARSHALL FIELD & CO., CHICAGO, ILL.
The WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE,
House of Representatives. GENTLEMEN: We come before your committee in the matter of duties upon leather gloves. We do not desire to make any recommendations as to the actual rates to be applied beyond suggesting a reasonable reduction, but do earnestly urge upon your committee the retention of specific duties upon these articles. The Wilson bill, enacted in 1894, first provided a complete schedule of specific duties upon leather gloves, which has been continued practically intact with varying amounts of duty during subsequent tariff acts. The revenues of the Government have been main
PARAGRAPH 461-HARNESS AND SADDLES. tained, collection of the duty made simple and easy, and an honest and equal assessment of duty levied upon all importers alike.
The extra duties of 40 cents per dozen pairs provided in this schedule for embroidery or special sewing should be abolished. The embroidery upon which this rate is levied costs in France 50 centimes to 1 franc (9.7 cents to 19.4 cents) per dozen and in Germany 50 pfennig (12 cents) per dozen more than the plain glove. The extra 40 cents duty is therefore equivalent to from 206 to 412 per cent. Piqué sewing costs in France from 1 to 2 francs (19.4 cents to 38.8 cents) per dozen, and in Germany 1 mark (24 cents) per dozen extra. The 40-cent duty is therefore equivalent to from 103 to 206 per cent.
We believe that the experience of the Customs Division of the Treasury Department will indorse to your committee our statements both with regard to the extra duties and the general benefits accrued from a schedule of specific duties upon leather gloves. Respectfully submitted.
MARSHALL FIELD & Co., By Thomas H. EDDY,
JANUARY 28, 1913. Hon. Oscar W. UNDERWOOD,
Chairman of Committee on Ways and Means, Washington, D. C. Dear Sir: We, the undersigned importers of Chicago, strongly urge the continuance of specific duties on kid and other leather gloves.
The ascertainment of foreign-market value of this merchandise is so difficult and uncertain that only by means of specific rates can uniformity of assessment be assured.
We also recommend that the cumulative or extra duties for stitching and embroidery on leather gloves in paragraph 459 of the present tariff be eliminated, as they are both unreasonable and unjust.
MARSHALL FIELD & Co.
Glove tranks, with or without the usual accompanying pieces, shall pay seventy-five per centum of the duty provided for the gloves in the fabri
cation of which they are suitable. PARAGRAPH 461.
Harness, saddles, saddlery, in sets or in parts, finished or unfinished, thirty-five per centum ad valorem.
HARNESS AND SADDLES.
TESTIMONY OF B. W. CAMPBELL, CHAIRMAN WHOLESALE
SADDLERY ASSOCIATION, CINCINNATI, OHIO.
Mr. CAMPBELL. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, ours is somewhat of a swan song. We are representing an industry that is having hard sledding, as it were, in order to keep ourselves above water.
We are confronted with new conditions, brought about by the . inventive genius of man, bringing forward new methods of transportation for both man and merchandise to such an extent that it is curtailing the volume of business that we are doing, and it is hard for the capital invested in the business to receive returns in excess of 5 or 6 per cent on the investment. I say that, I believe, with sufficient knowledge of the facts to know that it is true.
PARAGRAPH 461-HARNESS AND SADDLES.
There have been liquidations in the business throughout the United States during the past year of not less than seven of the large manufacturing institutions. This has been brought about, as I have told you, because of mechanical power taking the place of horses, and of course our business has to do entirely with horses.
As I understand, this tariff revision has two objects: To reduce the cost of the article to the consumer and to get revenue for the Government. I am going to refer first to the revenue for the Government. All the importations of saddlery and harness into this country-and I come very, very nearly telling the facts exactly as they are when I say all-are used by the rich people. Nothing comes here from England, Germany, or France except the better classes of goods, such goods as men would buy even if the tariff duties were as they were under the old bill, 45 per cent. In fact, I think that the best interests of the Government would be served and that no one in this country would suffer any injury if the duty was 100 per cent on saddlery and harness. I am not trying to convince any man that believes in the doctrine of free trade that he is wrong. I myself believe in protection.
Mr. KITCHIN. Do you know any Members of Congress, except perhaps Mr. Henry George, of New York, that believe in free trade, or who have announced that they were free traders ?
Mr. CAMPBELL. I would have judged yesterday that you were one of them.
Mr. KITCHIN. What indicated it ?
Mr. CAMPBELL. You referred to great free-trade England as being a country in which there was such wonderful prosperity.
Mr. KITCHIN. I referred to free-trade England as a country of wonderful prosperity as well as to protective America, and said that it is not absolutely necessary to have a high, prohibitive protective tariff in order to make prosperity:
Mr. CAMPBELL. I want to say, in passing, that your remark is very encouraging to me. I will candidly say to you that I had that impression, and I am an old-line Democrat, born one and have voted for seven Democratic presidents, two of whom were elected. If the object of this committee is to put the tariff duties upon things that will bring no injury to the consumer and benefit the Government, I feel that we are safe; that there is absolutely no excuse or reason or rhyme why you should put saddlery and harness on the free list, as was proposed in the bill by Mr. Cox on the 30th day of January, and which the Democratic Party voted for.
Mr. Kirchin. The fact is that you are a protectionist and claim that anybody who is in favor of reducing the tariff is a free trader?
Mr. CAMPBELL. No, sir; I do not believe that. But I could not help saying that anybody who wanted to put saddlery and harness on the free list would be a free trader.
Mr. Kirchin. A free trader in saddlery and harness.
Mr. Kirchin. How much is the annual production of saddlery and harness in this country?
Mr. CAMPBELL. At least $100,000,000.