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GOVERNMENT WHARF AT BLOCK ISLAND, RHODE ISLAND.

ENGINEER OFFICE, UNITED STATES ARMY.

Newport, R. I. December 7, 1881. GENERAL: In accordance with the indorsement on the communication from the Hon. Nelson W. Aldrich, in relation to the wharf at Block Island, I submit the following:

The government wharf referred to is the platform of spruce on the inside of the basin at Block Island. This is laid on spruce beams, one end of which rests on spruce-timber cribs, the other upon oak piles. This, as well as the basin itself, was but a temporary structure, to aid in carrying on the main work and get immediate shelter. The whole is about rotted out.

During this season I had prepared an estimate for replacing the eastern side of the basin (which forms part of the main work) with masonry. It is important to have this done at once; it will require an outlay of $10,000. There is also a requirement that the cliffs to the east should be protected from further abrasion by the waves, to prevent the material washing into the area protected by the breakwater. For this I have estimated that 850 feet of cliff requires protection, at a probable expense of $8,500. When replacing the eastern side of the basin we can arrange to do away with the rotten spruce platform as it now is. But if anything is done to the rest of it, I would recommend patching it. The oak piles :appear still good to last for some time. The patching can be done for $500. To replace the whole of the wharf or platform inside the basin will cost at least $5,000, if made of hard wood. But it wonld not be well to do it unless the north and west sides of the basin are rebuilt, and this would cost of itself $15,000. Better than this it would be to extend and increase the main breakwater so as to gain shelter in that way. An expenditure of $35,000 more on the main work will enable the whole protected space to be used as the basin now is.

To recapitulate, I would recommend an appropriation at onceFor replacing the east side of the basin......

$10,000 For protection to cliffs for saving the area sheltered by the breakwater..

8,500 For patching the government wharf...

500

$19,000 Very respectfully,

G. K. WARREN,

Lieutenant-Colonel of Engineers. Bvt. Maj. Gen. H. G. WRIGHT,

Brig. Gen. and Chief of Engineers, U. S. A.

IMPROVEMENT OF LITTLE NARRAGANSETT BAY, RIIODE ISLAND AND

CONNECTICUT.

At the date of June 30, 1881, the work of excavation under appropriation by act approved June 14, 1880, was in progress under the contract of Mr. W. H. Beard, dated August 28, 1880. Work under this contract had been commenced in May, 1881; it was completed August 31, 1881.

On the completion of this contract the same dredging machines continued work on the contract of Mr. J. H. Fenner, dated June 30, 1881, under the appropria. tion of $5,000 by act approved March 3, 1881. This work was completed in October, 1881.

The total amount of material removed under contract during the fiscal year was 33,683 cubic yards. The removal of this amount of material increased the width of channel, 74 feet deep, from 60 to 140 feet.

At the close of dredging operations in 1881 about $1,000 remained on hand. This money was retained for the purpose of removing rocks at the east entrance of the new channel and at the entrance to Watch Hill Landing.

In April, 1882, a schooner, with crew, divers, &c., was hired by the day to remove these rocks. This work was carried as far as the limited amount of money would permit. Twenty-five rocks, with less than 7 feet depth on them at mean low-water, were removed from the east entrance of new channel. This number was all that could be found. At Watch Hill fifty-seven bowlders were removed. There are still a few large and some small rocks there that should be removed. The work done, however, has materially helped the navigation.

This work is under the superintendence of Assistant Engineer H. A. Bentley.

The appropriation of $6,000 made by act of Congress passed August 2, 1882, will be applied to continuing this improvement in accordance with plans heretofore submitted and approved.

Fifteen thousand dollars could be expended during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1884, in completing the projected improvement of this bay.

MONEY STATEMENT.

$9,711 29

July 1, 1881, amount available......
July 1, 1882, amount expended during fiscal year, exclusive of outstanding liabilities

July 1, 1881...

9,433 41

July 1, 1882, amount available.......
Amount appropriated by act passed August 2, 1882..

$277 88 6,000 00

Amount available for fiscal year ending June 30, 1883......

$6,277 88

Amount (estimated) required for completion of existing project.......
Amount that can be profitably expended in fiscal year ending June 30, 1884...

$15,000 00 15,000 00

SUMMARY OF PROGRESS OF WORK UNDER THE UNITED STATES ENGINEERS TO JANUARY 1, 1883, FURNISHED BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL GEORGE H.

ELLIOT, IN CHARGE.

ENGINEER OFFICE, UNITED STATES ARMY.

Newport, R. I. January 18, 1883, MR. J. HERBERT SHEDD, C. E.,

Chairman Harbor Commission, Providence, R. I. DEAR SIR : In reply to yours of January 3d I forward herewith, by authority of the Chief of Engineers, a brief statement of work done on improvements of rivers and harbors in this State since June 30, 1882. Very respectfully,

GEORGE H. ELLIOT,

Lieut.-Col. Engineers. Seven (7) enclosures. 1, Providence River, 1883.

PROVIDENCE RIVER AND NARRAGANSETT BAY, RHODE ISLAND,

Under appropriation made by act of Congress of August 2d, 1882, a contract has been made for dredging a channel 25 feet deep at mean low-water at 16 cents per cubic yard. There have been dredged under this contract up to January 1st, about 200,000 cubic yards.

It is expected that the funds available will secure a channel 200 feet wide and 25 feet deep from Fox Point to the sea, and that it will be completed by Dec. 1st, 1883.

PAWTUCKET RIVER, RHODE ISLAND.

Nothing has been done on the improvement of this river since June 30, 1882. By act of Congress of August 20, 1882, the Secretary of War was directed at his discretion to cause a survey of this river and estimates of the cost of the improvement proper to be made.

A preliminary examination and report were made by Maj. J. W. Barlow, United States Engineers, while temporarily in charge of the works of this district after the death of General Warren.

The survey and estimates have not yet been ordered.

PAWTUXET RIVER, RHODE ISLAND.

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By act of Congress of August 2d, 1882, the Secretary of War was directed at his discretion to cause an examination or survey of this river or both, and estimates of cost of the improvements proper to be made.

A preliminary examination and report were made by Maj. J. W. Barlow while temporarily in charge of the works of this district after the death of General Warren. The survey and estimates have not yet been ordered.

BISSELL'S COVE, RHODE ISLAND.

By act of Congress of August 2d. 1882, the Secretary of War was directed at his discretion to cause an examination or survey of this cove or both, and estimates of cost of the improvement proper to be made.

A preliminary examination and report were made by Maj. J. W. Barlow, United States Engineers, while temporarily in charge of the works of this district after the death of General Warren.

The survey and estimates have not yet been ordered.

NEWPORT HARBOR, RHODE ISLAND.

Since June 30, 1882, the contract for dredging then in force has been completed. Another contract has been entered into for continuing the improvement by dredg. ing at 244 cents per cubic yard and work commenced. The total amount of material removed since June 30 is 33,680 cubic yards.

It is probable that the funds available for this improvement will be expended by April 1st, 1883.

LITTLE NARRAGANSETT BAY, RHODE ISLAND AND CONNECTICUT.

A contract has been made for dredging at 20 9-10 cents per cubic yard to increase the width of the 74 foot channel between Pawcatuck Point and Rhodes' Folly under the appropriation made by act of August 2, 1882.

Work was commenced in November, and 33211 cubic yards removed.

Work will be resumed as soon as the weather will permit in the spring, and the funds available will be expended by June 30, 1883.

BLOCK ISLAND, RHODE ISLAND.

Plans for the expenditure of the funds appropriated for this work by act of Congress of August 2, 1882, have been prepared.

It is expected that the work will be completed by June 30, 1883.

BUSINESS OF PAWTUCKET.

An effort was made in December to ascertain approximately the amount of material in tons annually handled by the business men of Pawtucket. The information was sought by the Business Men's Association, for the purpose, mainly, of ivdicating the importance of unimpeded navigation to that town. Four hundred and fifty-eight circulars were sent, to which a response was expected in each case. Only one hundred and four replied. The information sought is therefore far from as complete as was expected. Some of the larger establishments made no return. The gross amount returned reaches about 280,000 tons of various kinds of material.

Below is a copy of the circular and partial copy of blank with aggregate of the returns received :

PAWTUCKET, R. I., Dec. 15, 1882. At the suggestion of persons in position to aid in legislation, the Pawtucket Business Men's Association desire, in the interest of this community, to ascertain as nearly as can be done conveniently, the amount of business that is transacted by this community in tonnage. We enclose herewith a blank which we wish you would fill out with the amount of all material received and all that is sent away, manufactured or otherwise, however received or sent. This report will be made in gross, and nothing but the total tonnage will be known outside of this committee, so that there may be no hesitation in filling the blank, as the amount of private business will not be revealed.

As this is of some importance to all, it is desirable that this may be done at once in order to acquire the information at an early day.

Please place the blank when filled, inside the enclosed stamped envelope, and drop it in the post office,

and oblige,

GEO. E. NEWELL,
OLNEY ARNOLD, Committee.
E. L. FREEMAN,

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