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Your letter has been referred to the Attorney-General, who will take such action as he may deem proper.

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Enclosed find copy of a dispatch sent to you from Baraboo today. I wish you would show the same to the Attorney-General, and let me know us soon as you can what rights I have, and what would be best for me to do.

The railroads have troubled me in this manner, now over six months, and all during that time they charged me $26 per car from Rudd's to Baraboo, 74 miles, and pay in advance.

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Baraboo, I hold a car of lumber from Rudd's, consigned to you. with charges unpaid and no money furnished to pre-pay to Baraboo Please forward me $25.20 for that purpose.


Commissioner Hoyt to H. H. Porter.


MADISON, April 15, 1875.

DEAR SIR-We are having complaints that your agent at Elroy is demanding pre-payment of charges on lumber in transit from Rudd's to Baraboo, and that the charges so required to be paid are in excess of those authorized by the law. It appears that the charges on a load from the former to the latter place amount to $26-$10 in excess of the legal rates for the whole distance.

Before answering the communication just received, we deem it

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proper to enquire whether the agent at Elroy is acting contrary to your wishes, or whether it is the settled purpose of your company to disregard those provisions of chapter 273, laws of 1874, as amended by chapter 334, laws of 1875, which forbid the demand of prepayment of charges, and which require that in the computation of charges for transportation over two or more roads, such connecting roads shall be treated as a continuous line. Have the goodness to reply at once, and believe me,

Very respectfully,


H. H. Porter to Commissioner Hoyt, in reply.

CHICAGO, April 19, 1875.

DEAR SIR: Your favor of the 15th together with yours of the 3d inst., are just received on my return from New York, where I have been unexpectedly detained. I will enquire into the matter referred to immediately, and take the necessary means to correct the error. I am obliged to you for calling my attention to it. At the same time I had noticed in the New York papers, as copied from those of Wisconsin, that the Governor and railroad commissioners had decided to construe the law as amended last winter in the mode which it was plain the legislature intended it to be construed, viz., that all roads in the State of Wisconsin with the exception of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul and Chicago and Northwestern were relieved from the details of the Potter-law so long as their rates were not higher than the tariffs which were in effect on those roads immediately previous to the passage of the original Potter-law.

If this is not so, the injustice of the State of Wisconsin to the poor railroads of the State has been increased by the legislation of the past winter, rather than relieved.

May I ask you to give me your view of the matter, and oblige,

Yours, truly,

General Manager.

Commissioner Hoyt to Christian Obrecht.

MADISON April 23, 1875.

DEAR SIR: After some delay, I have an answer to my letter to the general manager of the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad, concerning the violations of law by his agent at Elroy, (in making unlawful charges and demanding pre-payment of charges.) He says: "Your favor of the 15th, together with yours of the 3d inst., are just received on my return from New York, where I have been unexpectedly detained. I will inquire into the matter referred to immediately, and take the necessary means to correct the error.

"I am much obliged to you for calling my attention to it."

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Received yours of the 23d; and, for further information, I send you this letter from Rablin Bros. It seems railroads care not how much nor how often they violate the laws of the State. I hope something may be done to bring them to terms. The existing state of affairs should not continue; they are ruinous to business. Hoping to hear from you again, I remain,

Respectfully, yours,



GRAND RAPIDS, April 22, 1875.

DEAR SIR:-We made the demand of the railroad company, (Wis. Val.), to-day, to ship your lumber, but they refused to ship it without pre-payment of charges. We made draft on you for $155.00. Hope this will be satisfactory.

Yours, truly,

C. OBRECHT, Sauk City.


Commissioner Hoyt to F. O. Wyatt.


MADISON, WIS., April 27, 1875. DEAR SIR: We have complaints from parties at Sauk City and at Baraboo that the ruling of your agent at Grand Rapids, requiring charges on lumber to be pre-paid, occasions them inconvenience and loss. You are of course aware that such demand is contrary to the provisions of section 4, of chapter 334, laws of 1875, but it seems that such provisions have been overlooked by your agent. The particular shipment to which allusion is here made was from Rablin & Company of Grand Rapids, to Christian Obrecht of Bara


This letter is written in the belief that you will immediately correct the error, and Mr. Obrecht will be advised to delay action until you have had ample time for that purpose.

Very respectfully,



Commissioner Hoyt to Christian Obrecht.


MADISON, WIS., April 27, 1875.

DEAR SIR:-Your favor appended to the letter of the 22d from Rablin Bros., of Grand Rapids, is at hand.

Believing that the action of the Wisconsin Valley Railroad Company's agent is contrary to the interest of that company, as well as unjust to you, I have written to Superintendent F. O. Wyatt, acquainting him with the facts, and would now suggest that prosecucution be delayed until we have official notice of the course he intends to pursue hereafter.

Respectfully, yours,


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F. O. Wyatt to the Commissioners.

OFFICE OF THE WISCONSIN VALLEY R. R. Co.. TOMAH, WIS., April 29, 1875. GENTLEMEN-Yours of the 27th is at hand, notifying me of complaint of parties shipping timber, &c., from points on this road to Baraboo, Wis. Lumber going from stations on this line to Baraboo and other points on the C. & N. W. R. R. in Wisconsin is shipped via Valley Junction and Elroy, and is carried between the last named points by the West Wisconsin R. R. The trouble in this case arises from the fact that the West Wisconsin and Chicago & Northwestern Railways refuse to receive this freight until freights are prepaid. I shall be pleased to have this matter adjusted, as the present demands of these roads are detrimental to the interests of this road. I think there can be no question but that the value of a car load of this kind of freight will be sufficient to pay freight to any point in the State, in case it is refused by consignee. The board may rest assured that this company will comply with the law in the matter.



Complaint-Van Brunt & Davis to the Commissioners.
HORICON, WIS., April 27, 1875.

GENTS: We enclose you two letters, one from O. E. Britt, and one from Dan. Atwood.

We bought lumber at Shiocton. It was shipped, and in a few days we received a telegram, stating we had two cars of lumber at Green Bay, held there for advance charges. Since then they have

concluded to send them to Burnett Junction.

These two letters will explain the matter, and we want to know how to act. We also paid two freight bills of $41.00 each, from Wonewoc. We think our customer paid it, and we paid him. Is there any way to correct this? We did not want our customer to be out, for he thought he was doing us a favor; so we paid it.

Please advise, and oblige,

Respectfully, yours,



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