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It is a very significant fact that mistakes are never made upon the other side. If a car has ever been loaded with less than 20,000 pounds, I have never heard of it. There must be some power given to the company to prevent the overloading and consequent destruction of their cars.
If any plan can be suggested by which, under the rates allowed for receiving and transporting lumber, it is possible for the company to prevent this overloading of the cars, without incurring an expense which would make the transportation of lumber in the State of Wisconsin a greater tax upon the companies than it now is, it will be cheerfully adopted.
In the meantime we respectfully submit that the rule which the company has been working under is a reasonable rule, and will never injuriously affect any person who will exercise reasonable care in properly loading the cars.
I have received the answer of your Board to the questions which I had the honor to submit to you a few days since. It is fair for me to say, that I do not think with you that the law requires this company to part with the possession of the property which it has transported until its charges for the transportation of such property are paid, or that it deprives the company of the lien which the law gives to common carriers upon the goods transported for the charges of transportation.
The rule adopted by your Board, if applied to the relations of this company with several of the companies in Wisconsin which have become bankrupt within the past few months, would, in a great measure, have prevented this company from receiving freight earned by it in the transportation of goods which had been delivered to these roads.
B. C. COOK.
COMPLAINT THAT CAR-RATES ARE NOT FURNISHED FOR CARLOADS OF HEAVY ARTICLES AND MERCHANDISE.
Commissioner Hoyt to S. S. Merrill.
OFFICE OF RAILROAD COMMISSIONERS,
MADISON, September 9, 1875.
DEAR SIR:-We have occasionally received complaints from man
ufacturers and dealers that they were unable to get car-rates on car-loads of very heavy merchandise, such as iron and steel, stoves, nails, etc., etc. Just now I am in receipt of a letter from a hardware-dealer, at Fox Lake, who makes two points in this conection, namely:
First. That he is not only refused car-rates on car-loads of nails, but that he is charged 27c. per 100 lbs., which he feels is hard to pay. Secondly. That he knows of shippers at Waupun who are only charged 15c. per 100 lbs. nails, distance about the same.
The law as it stands does not fix a rate for heavy articles of this class, but it does authorize the commissioners "to classify all ararticles of freight transported on any railroad or parts of railroads, except the articles placed in special classes “D," "E," "G," and "H," placing said articles in either of the general classes, or in any of said special classes, except classes "D," "E," "G," and "H," and they are further empowered to reduce said rates, either in general or special classes," etc.
As stated in our report to the legislature, we have not deemed it wise to make any reduction of rates in class, nor have we made any transfer of articles from one class to another, though the question has been raised whether the "heavy fourth-class articles in carloads," mentioned in section 3, of the "Potter-law," should not be made to include articles of the kind above-mentioned.
Would it not be both just and judicious for your company to allow shippers the privilege of ordinary shipment of car-loads at carrates when the articles are of this heavy class, are of one general description, and are not of such character as of right to exclude them from the privileges given articles in the special classes?
I anticipate the answer you will probably make on the basis of earnings, but what are the reasons applicable to car-loads of iron, that do not also apply to car-loads of brick, and shingles, salt, lime, etc.?
JOHN W. HOYT,
S. S. Merrill to Commissioner Hoyt, in reply.
OFFICE CHICAGO, MIL. & ST. PAUL R. R. Co.,
DEAR SIR:-Replying to yours of the 9th inst., I would say that the merchant at Fox Lake, is not correctly informed in regard to our rate on iron and nails to Waupun.
We have not made a rate to any one in Waupun of less than twenty cents per 100 pounds on such articles, and that only to manufacturers.
As you frankly admit in your favor of the 9th, those articles are not included in any of the special classes, upon which the law fixes arbitrary rates, but are clearly in the four general merchandise classes," as said articles were classified by the Milwaukee & St. Paul Railway, which classification went into effect on the 15th day of June, 1872." (Ch. 273, sec. 3.)
As a matter of fact, I desire to explain to you that it has, for some years past, been customary for us to give all manufacturers on our lines in this State, an abatement from the 4th class rate on iron, &c., used in their business.
We have done so willingly in order to enable them to manufacture in the interior, and sell their goods in competition with city and foreign manufacturers, who have no freight to pay on raw material.
But we have not in any case taken bar-iron and nails, even for manufacturers, at so low a prics as any of the special classes to which you allude, for the reason that we cannot afford to do so.
While we have abated our 4th class class rate about five cents per hundred to manufacturers, we have not reduced our rate to merchants, for the reason that they have no particular competition to meet.
It has been our aim to encourage manufacturing in this State, and to make no discrimination as between merchants; but to charge all alike who are engaged in the same line of business.
It is true section 13, chapter 273, gives the Commissioners power to change the classification as suggested by you, but not unless, in the judgment of the board, "it can be done without injury to such railroad," and I desire to say that no railroad company can afford to do the business of a country-merchant who ship few cars of iron and
nails during the year, at the same rates they can afford to carry iron ore, brick, sand, coal and such articles which usually go in large quantities, and are loaded and unloaded by the owner, and upon which the risk of damage is very small.
Would it not be consistent and proper for you to reply to the merchant at Fox Lake that the law, as it now stands, does not fix rates on bar iron, nails, hardware, and other classified freight? We certainly cannot afford to do the business you speak of at any less rates than we are now charging.
JOHN W. HOYT, Commissioner.
S. S. MERRILL,
COMPLAINTS RELATING TO CONNECTION OF PASSENGER TRAINS. Commissioner Hoyt to D. A. Olin.
OFFICE OF RAILROAD COMMISSIONERS,
MADISON, October 26, 1875.
MY DEAR SIR:-Complaint has been made that your noon train going west, passes Beloit some 15 minutes before the arrival of the C. &. N, W. train, so that passengers wishing to go west, via. the C. &. N. W. and the W. Union Railways, are obliged to lie over several hours at the place above named. The difference in time is so short that it would seem practicable that close connection should be made. If, upon inquiry into the matter, you find it possible to make the change desired, please do so; if not, have the goodness to acquaint the Railroad Commissioners with the reasons, and oblige,
D. H. OLIN, Gen'l Supt.
JOHN W. HOYT,
D. A. Olin to Commissioner Hoyt, in reply.
OFFICE WESTERN UNION R. R. Co.,
RACINE, WIS., October 29, 1875.
DEAR SIR: Yours of the 26th instant in relation to passenger
connections with the C. & N. W. R'y at Beloit, is received. I would like very much to make connections there, both east and west, but I see no way that I can do so, (as C. & N. W. trains now run) without the breaking of more important connections both east and west of Beloit.
The westward bound train makes close connections with the C & N. W. at Fulton, also with the C. R. P. & P. R. R., at Rock Island; also eastward bound train makes close connections at Rock Island and Fulton with the trains from Omaha.
My schedule of time for these trains is as fast now as it should be. Going west, our train would have to wait at Beloit 40 minutes beyond the present time, for passengers to get over from the C. & N. W. depot, and get baggage checked, etc. I could make my train going west 10 minutes later than now, but this would be of no use unless the C. & N. W. train could get to their station at about 11:15, so as to give 30 minutes time for passengers to get to our train from theirs.
Coming east, I think there is over an hour's difference in time of arrival at Beloit, and I could not make the connection, (without breaking connections at Rock Island and Fulton,) unless the C. & N. W. train arrives at Beloit later than now-say at about 3:20, P. M. Our eastward-bound train now makes close connection with the C. & N. W. train at Clinton for Chicago. Trusting that this explanation will be satisfactory, I remain,
JOHN W. HOYT, Commissioner.
D. A. OLIN,
Commissioner Hoyt to Superintendent Olin.
OFFICE OF THE RAILROAD COMMISSIONERS,
DEAR SIR:-On my return from Chicago, where I saw Superintendant Hughitt, on the subject of the connections at Beloit, I find your favor of the 28th, in answer to mine of recent date.
Superintendant Hughitt manifested a disposition to co-operate with you, and said it seemed quite practicable to make the morning connection with your train going west if you could divide time with