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several other questions of interest. Each year reveals the great
need for such a State Board, as it also discloses the good work, and
1 commend tins report to you for your careful consideration.
The twenty-fifth annual report of the Railroad Commissioners
will be submitted for your consideration, and this wilt contain some
interesting figures, as the following tables show :
1903?Total gross earnings.$13,117,181 16
1902?Total gross earnings.11,785,946 52
Net Income, Less Taxes and Expenses.
1903?Total net revenue.$4; 108,080 80
1902?Total net revenue... 3,640,590 24
Net increase. $467,490 56
1903?Taxes due the State. $453,015 28
1902?Taxes due the State. 472,171 14
Decrease. $19,155 86
Percentage of operating expenses to gross earnings.6860
The reason for the decrease in the amount of taxes paid is already
explained by the Commissioners in their report.
This report includes a number of recommendations, principal
among them being that electric railway lines operating outside of
municipalities be placed under the control of the Commission. Next,
tliat the railroads be required to have an agency in this State to
pass updn claims presented for adjustment, and also that they he
given authority to employ a civil engineer, to work under the super
vision and make such investigation of the physical condition of
the railroads as they may find requisite and necessary. These are
forceful suggestions and I commend them, along with the other
suggestions contained in their report, to your earnest consideration.
The report made by the State Geologist of his work during the
past year contains much of interest. Systematic geological surveys
have been made by this officer during the year, the surveys being
devoted principally to the middle and lower portions of the State,
where are found, in abundance, fuller's earth, limestone, marls,
green sands and good clays. These surveys arc most important,
revealing hidden sources of wealth to our State. Regarding, for
instance, the. quality of South Carolina marls, this report quotes
the following from the Bureau of Chemistry, United States Depart
ment of Agriculture. A test of the chemical and physical prop
erties of a sample of South Carolina marl was there made, and the
report was: "This marl has the highest plasticity and cementing
value of any marl tested in this laboratory." The report adds that
the "neat briquettes" made from this marl exceeded in tensile
strength the requirements of the United States Army by 50 per
I am frequently in receipt of communications from distant States
asking for official information regarding our mineral resources.
This report furnishes full and scientific information concerning this
subject and commends itself to all, especially to the consideration
of South Carolinians.
The State Geologist makes the following recommendation, in
which I concur: "That the Legislature authorize the Secretary of
State to secure appropriate cases in harmony with the woodwork
of the main hall of the Capitol, in order that the mineral specimens
exhibiting the resources of the State may be becomingly displayed
therein without obstructing that space."
THE STATE MILITIA.
"The fact that this is a decidedly important department of our
State Government is receiving greater recognition each year. In
addition to the moral effect of a well-organized and well-disciplined
military force, the civil law of the State needs this valuable adjunct,
especially upon those occasions when its aid must he invoked. The
importance of our State Militia is hard to overestimate, and its
proper organization, maintenance and support well deserve our
most careful consideration. On several occasions during the past
year the need for such services arose, and the response to my sum
mons, in'every instance, was spirited, immediate and soldierly.
Under the reorganization of the State Militia last year, a consid
erable sum was paid to South Carolina from an appropriation made
by the United States Government, available in cash and equip
ments. The former was used in holding encampments throughout
the State, the latter was of great benefit in supplying the needs of
oiir soldiers. As a result of the work of the year the improvement
in our Militia has been marked. The total strength of our Militia
force?officers and eidisted men?today numbers 3,735, giving
South Carolina high rank among the militia forces of the States,
and these are better equipped than has been the case for years. It
is to me exceedingly gratifying to make this report, and I may add
that the outlook is most promising for continued improvement and
I ask your careful consideration of the exhaustive and complete
report which has been submitted by the Adjutant- and Inspector
General. Here the condition and needs of our State Militia are
thoroughly set forth. Among the recommendations made in this
report which are well worthy of your attention, I would especially
emphasize the need of a State Armory, the building now rented
being absolutely inadequate for this purpose. The details of this
recommendation made by the Adjutant-General will show how
much he is hampered by the lack of a suitable building, and his
proposed plan for a State Armory is a business proposition which
has my indorsement. The fact that for years our( Militia force
has been practically self-sustaining, and their great efficiency, despite
this difficulty, should give added force to any request they may
make of yoi ?? honorable body.
IMPROVEMENT OF PUBLIC HIGHWAYS.
Among other important questions that should have your careful
consideration is one in which all \ oople of South Carolina have
a vital interest. This is the subject of good roads, a subject of the
greatest importance to us all. To you, gentlemen, who understand
and appreciate so well the needs of our people, argument here is
unnecessary. 1 have noticed, with great gratification, the interest
which has been manifested in many of our counties in this need of
today, and hope soon to sec every county in our State actively en
gaged in this all-important work. A large number of meetings
have been held at various places and I feel sure that good results
must follow. Improvement in all departments and branches should
ever be our aim and purpose, and the sure rewards of faithful labors
in this field are -worth striving for and should command our most
careful legislation. Every practical and business consideration in
volved would be: greatly facilitated and helped by the general im
provement of our ro?d system.
While I am convinced that proper and systematic work of county
chaingangs can be of decided benefit, still, very much more than
this is necessary in order to obtain a modern road. Under our
present system well-built and durable highways cannot be hoped for,
as the present condition of our roads do well attest. Experience
will prove, I am sure, that it is wise economy to spend time and
money in this work, and I believe that our people now realize this
sufficiently to be willing to defray whatever cost may be necessary.
In my judgment the various counties in our State should be given
the legal right to tax themselves for this purpose, should they deem
it best to do so. To this end, therefore, I recommend such legisla
tion as you may deem judicious and which will give to the counties
the right, by a majority vote, either to issue bonds or to levy an
annual tax for road improvement. Money voted for the improve
ment of our roads will be an excellent business investment, the value
of which will be more appreciated every year. As all citizens,
whether in town or county, will be equally benefited by such an in
vestment, it is but fair that all should be made to bear their share
of the burden, and this can only be done by a tax upon property*
The. building of public highways is now a national question. Na
tional goo'l roads associations have been formed and are actively
at work to secure aid for this purpose from the National Govern
ment. Senator Latimer has been doing active and vigorous work
along this line and is very much interested. It seems to me that if
National aid is to be given for this work, there is no reason why we
in South Carolina should not have our share of such an appropria
tion. The cooperation of our National Government in this matter
is no new policy. No particular Stale has paramount claims here
and it would, in my judgment, be an error for South Carolina not
to secure her proportion of any appropriation for the permanent
improvement of our highways that may be available from this
source. The plethoric condition of the National treasury is a further
favorable consideration of this aspect of the case.
BUREAU OF COMMERCE AND IMMIGRATION.
The recent movement to secure immigration to our State gives me
great pleasure. I have been profoundly impressed, during my ad
ministration as your Chief Executive, with the absolute need of just
such work. We cannot afford to delay longer in this all-important
matter, and systematic business consideration is demanded by the
needs of the hour. Our resources are both varied and unlimited.
These embrace as fertile lands as can be found on the continent,
and at prices far below their intrinsic value; a climate unsurpassed,
allowing these lands to produce the entire year; mineral resources
of the greatest abundance and of the rarest quality, with water
powers, variously located and practically undeveloped. In addition
to all of this the cost of living, and of living well, has no lower
average and our health record is second to none.
Despite these facts we have been simply letting opportunities pass
by, because of no effort whatever on our part to let the outside
world know, in plain facts and figures, what we have to offer. Facts
and figures must be given and must be accurately and officially given.
These are absolutely necessary, for a home-seeker generally has
nothing else to go upon. Other States, with far inferior advan
tages, have in recent years seen these possibilities, and as a result arc
reaping golden harvests.
The time is now ripe for such a move on the part of our State,
and, viewing the present markets, the commercial conditions?Na
tional and international, particularly this country's relations to the
West Indies and the Isthmus?those who wish to sec South Caro
lina strike the crest of the wave should urge that action be now
taken in this matter.
Any movement to induce immigration in order to be successful
must be thoroughly organized and skilfully directed, and this, in
my judgment, can best be done by the State itself. Nearly all of
the Northern and Western States have Bureaus of Immigration,
with a Commissioner in charge, and every effort is being made to
attract desirable settlers. Many of the Southern States also arc
at work. Alabama has such an office, with a Commissioner of Agri
culture and Industries, and much has been accomplished for the
State. North Carolina has an Immigration Department connected
with the Department of Agriculture, and Maryland maintains such
a department under the direction of a Commissioner of the Land
Office. In other States similar bureaus, varying in the scope of the
work, are maintained, and they arc having a most telling effect.
We, on the other hand, are doing nothing. Frequent inquiries
are made in regard to our resources, but there is no one in a posi
tion to furnish official information, and the inquirer goes elsewhere.
If today we manage to secure one settler annually from abroad out
of the hundreds of thousands coming, it is merely by chance. Out
of the 648,743 immigrants who came to the country in 1902, 88,000
were farmers and farm laborers; 80,000 were classed as skilled, and
3,000 professional men were included in the grand total. Many
of these came with money to invest. It is estimated that the aver
age Scotch immigrant comes with not less than $1,500 in cash.
Surely all these are most desirable, and we cannot afford longer to
sit idly by and allow none of them to come to us.
I am profoundly impressed with the needs of the situation, and
recommend, therefore, in view of the advantages we have to offer
and of the great need of utilizing them, the establishment of a Bu
reau of Commerce and Immigration, with a Secretary or Commis
sioner in charge of this department.
OFFICIAL COMPILATION OF CONFEDERATE RECORDS.
A matter of great importance, not only to South Carolina but
to a much larger territory, which very specifically includes the
South, well deserves a place in this Message. This relates to a
recent Act of Congress, which Act provides for "A complete roster
of the Federal and Confederate Soldiers in the War Between the
The Honorable, the Secretary of War, notified me of the passage
of this Act after the adjournment of your honorable body, which
I very much regret, as I should have been pleased to have had the
benefit of your advice in this matter. The truth of our history is
dear to every Southern heart,"and with loyal pride we ask no more
than the glorious truth for those heroes of the Confederacy whose
lives and deeds have made history for all ages to come.
Realizing the importance of the interests involved, I had no
hesitancy in undertaking this work, though in doing so I had to
arrange for financial aid pending your future consideration and
action. South Carolina, above all Southern States, should not fail to
respond where the records of the soldiers of the Southern Con
federacy are concerned. There are no more glorious deeds of sacri
fice and valor recorded than were given to the world by the men
who wore the gray, and it is our grateful privilege to see that their
names shall have imperishable inscription in the archives of our
nation. On March 16, 1903, I received an official communication
from Secretary Root, from which I beg to quote the following clause
of the "Legislative, Executive and Judicial Appropriation Act, ap
proved February 25, 1903":
" That under the direction of the Secretary of War the Chief of
the Record and Pension Office shall compile, from such official
records as are in the possession of the United States, and from
such other records as may be obtained by loan from the various
States and other official sources, a complete roster of the officers and
enlisted men of the Union and Confederate Armies."
Acting upon this official information I at once appointed Col.
M. P. Tribble, of Anderson, a mcmler of your body, to undertake
these responsible duties, knowing that in his care they would be
faithfully met. Colonel Tribble's official report of the work done,
though brief, is accurate and of comprehensive information. It
recites the progress made over great obstacles, and most clearly
reveals some of the difficulties in the way of recording, for future
ages, some of the truths of history. It shows how these obstacles
can be overcome, and contains accurate data concerning what has
been actually accomplished. This is interesting information and
should have our careful attention.
It may be unnecessary to do so, but I beg that you permit me, as a
further evidence of Colonel Tribble's fitness for this work, to em
phasize his patriotic services in having a meeting of the commis
sioners of the Southern States at Atlanta. The resolutions there
adopted, memorializing Congress to amend the present bill, so that
it may allow the acceptance of such rolls as can be made up by the
surviving members of the Confederate States Army, is one of the
most valuable services rendered in connection with this work. In
all of the work done by Colonel Tribble I am glad to note that this
important task has been in capable, patriotic and faithful hand?.
His war comrades will unite with me in emphasizing the true value
of such service as he has rendered, and 1 recommend that he be
I paid the sum of $1,500.00 for this work. Colonel Tribble has been
i put to heavy expense, having to reside in Columbia, and also having
j to employ a clerk, and I know that this amount is much less than
what has been paid for similar services by other Southern States.
Colonel Tribble. in his report, acknowledges his indebtedness
to Gen. Edward McCrady. to Prof. YV. J. Rivers, and to Generals
Manigault, Kershaw and barley. He also takes occasion for special
j mention of the valuable work done by Col. John P. Thomas in
j connection with the securing of rolls and records, and in all of these
j acknowledgements I bog to join.
The members of the General Assembly, acting as the representa
tives of the people of South Carolina, have shown that they
consider it a privilege to provide for the needy survivors of the
Confederacy. These veterans, in the vigor of young manhood,
offered their lives in defense of their country, and now, in their
declining years, it is not only a patriotic duty, but it is also a grate
ful privilege, to show our appreciation of such heroism. In their
great struggle these soldiers were actuated solely by principle and
patriotism, and our care for them today cannot be more fitly nor
more appropriately bestowed than upon the foundation laid by these
men themselves in the years gone by.
We have now upon our pension rolls 8,296 pensioners, an increase
of 546 over last year, and among this number your appropriation
of $200,000 has been divided. The present laws regulating the
distribution of this pension fund, in the main, are working satis
I factorily. I am advised by the officers whose duty it is to distribute
this fund that frequent changes of this law, particularly such as
have local bearing, disarrange its working order and seriously
impair its efficiency. I can readily understand how this may be so,
and as it is now working smoothly, in charge of the survivors them
selves, I think it would be well to leave details to them, so far as
j this may be possible. The report of the Comptroller-General fully
and comprehensively sets forth the distribution of the amount
I appropriated for pensions, and the list of pensioners for each county,
with the amount paid to each pensioner, under the classifications
' prescribed by law, are here set forth in full.
THE MONUMENT T() WADE HAMPTON.
Among all the great men our State has produced there is no one
whose name is more beloved, whose memory is more honored, whose
fame is more secure than is that of Wade Hampton. Not only was
he the brave chieftain, the wise statesman, but to us he was even
more: he was?and is?Wade Hampton, the beloved South
Carolinian, the redeemer of our State. We can never forget him,
I and it is the earnest desire of our people that a monument to his
memory should str.nd before the capitol of the. State he loved and
served so well.
With this object in view, you appropriated, at your last session,
the sum of $20,000.00, which sum was to be available when the
people of our State should raise $10,000.00 for this purpose, and I
had the honor of appointing a committee from your body to take
charge of this work. Many reasons have operated against the
completion of this subscription, the principle one being the inability
of the Committee to reach the people. The Treasurer of this Com
mittee has reported to me that $5,467.86 of the required amount
has been secured to date.
In my judgment it is best that there should be no further delay,
as this is a matter where sentiment and pride are concerned, and 1
recommend that you make the amount already appropriated at once
available, and instruct your Committee to proceed with its work.
CHANGES IN OUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM.
For a few years past the congested condition of the calendars of
I the Circuit Courts in nearly all of the counties of our State has
I been a problem which forced itself upon the consideration of the
people. To relieve this condition, in 1900 an Act was passed pro
viding f^r the holding of .Special Courts. While, through the
instrumentality of such courts, much work has been done this year?
despite the continued illness of two of our Circuit Judges?still it
is obvious that they have not met, and cannot meet, all the require
j mcnts for which they were intended. Only a brief presentation
of the present condition of this problem can be included in what
I desire to say to you in this Message.
Since the passage of the Act above referred to, each year has
j shown a rapid increase in the number of Special Courts held,
demonstrating the fact that among other objections such a meas
ure docs not tend towards economy. Last year a Civil Contingent
Fund of $2,500.00 was appropriated by your body, to be applied
to payment of the expenses of these Courts. This fund has been
entirely exhausted, leaving twelve terms of Court still unpaid for,
payment for which will have to be referred to your Committee on
Claims. Besides this, there are perhaps even more unsatisfactory
conditions involved, which, if these Courts are continued, will still
further diminish their effectiveness.
The discussion of this phase of the subject has been general, and
the conclusion seems to have been reached by thoughtful men that
it is unwise to make a temporary judge out of a practicing attorney.
This certainly involves the highest principles of our judicial system,
and, in my judgment, it is an error. That such appointees may be
gentlemen of the highest character and ornaments of the profession
to which they belong docs not lessen the fact that the permanence,
stability and highest meaning of our judicial system is menaced.
On the other hand, our system of v having eight circuits proved
satisfactory until it was outgrown by the progress of our State.
When these circuits were created there were thirty-four counties
only, whereas we now have forty-one. Our growth in population
and wealth has been great, making naturally a very large increase
in the business of the courts.
Without going further into tbe details Of this fnort important
subject, it needs only to be stated that existing conditions clearly
prove that the present system is alike unsatisfactory and inade
quate, and a remedy must be found. In my opinion, it would be
very hard to overestimate the set inns import of the situation with