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The Starkville News.
VOL. XVli PERSONAL EXPLANATION-HOB ISLAND SHIPPING PLANT. From the CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Saturday, Dec. 14, 1918. The Secretary proceeded to read the Journal of the proceedings of the legis lative day of Thursday, December ,13, 1918, when on request of Mr. Varda man and by unanimous consent, the further reading was dispensed with an'd the Journal was approved. MR. VARDAMAN. Mr. President. 1 rise to a queston of personal privilege. Mv attention has been called to a spec ial dispatch from Philadelphia, Pa., published In the Washington Post of yesterday, which 1 send to the desk and ask to have read. The VICE PRESIDENT. It will be read. The Secretary read as follows: Philadelphia, December 12 The lie direct has been given to Sen, Vardanian, of Mississippi, by Rear Admiral Francis T. Rowles, assistant general manager of the Emergency Fleet Corporation. Senator aman In the Senate on Tuesday said tpe construction of the Hog Island Shipyard was ‘•one of the most infamous transactions that mar the pages of American history.” He agreed, he said, with Senator King, of Utah, who had declared “there was a great deal of vulgar robbery, stealing, and thievery by men engaged in the Hog Island enterprise.” Senator Vardanian said he thought there was enough evidence in the hands of the Senate Committee on Commerce ,n cancellation of the contract b the car- y construct fslan t to i to Vn- IJS •)- e R I t .U ; i t, n i I e e V iy a bruu. .... ... _ au., Lf that fact Is hardly worth while. 1 Now, what I said about the Hng Island enterprise was uttered upon Jhe floor of this Chamber as a United Slates Senator under the sanctity of un oath to uphold the Constitution, the laws of the coumry, and protect the Interests of the American people against the greed, cupidity, avarice, and criminal! ty of the outlaws of society. 1 was dis cussing a public enterprise and one which I know and everybody else knows is as far from being faultless as sin Is far from virtue. It is an enter prise that no honest man could defend In all of Its details. It Is one of these peculiar enterprises that have grown up since the declaration of war, which was conceived by its promoters in pri vate life in the sin of selfishness and brought forth swaddled In the Ameri can flag to serve a selfish purpose. Let us for u moment consider Its his tory. A number of highly respectable financiers came together, farmed a cor poration, bought a hog wallow, which was rightly named “Hog Island,” capitalized it at probably double or treble its real Value, and then leased it to the United stales lor a site for a shipbuilding plant. The land was valued at 81,800,000, and the rent charged the Government of the United States was 0 per cent on estimated val ue of the laud, if my memory serves me correctly. This same corporation un dertook and agreed to build, the Gov ernment of the United States paying all expenses, this shipbuilding plant at’ an estimated cost of $3 1, 000,000 without fees or plus per cent. The profits which the shipbuilding corporation was to receive as a commiss ion for their patriotic service to ue ren dered by it was 4 or 5 per cent on the value of the ships to be built by this plant The work in the construction of the plant had not proceeded very Ur, howeve'r, before It was determined bv the corporation, which v/e were told was organized for patriotic, purposes, that the building might be facilitated bv subletting contracts at a fixed fee ol 5 per cent upon the estimated cost of the work. * Some of the contractors, it appeared from the testimony, had stock In the parent, corporation with which the Gov eminent contracted to build the plant without fee*. Everyone knows, who has paid any attention to the Investiga tion of this enterprise, that in the be ginning of the bulldlrfg of the plant the grossest extravagance in the payment of wages, the most glaring luconipc tency was shown in the purchase of ma terial, and in the general management of the company. Every man called to thu service of this corporation had his wages doubled and, in some Instance, quadrupled. The head man, who bad been the directing head of tbn contract ing firm of Stone t Webster, who re ceived of Slone & Webster 813,000 per year while serving them, was pul at the head of the shipbuilding corporation with a salary of 835,000 per year. For everything that was done of a similar nature ihe United States Government was charged and plundered according inglv. It will also be remembered that when this corporation undertook the con struction of the Hog Island shipping plant it tried to Induce the Government to fix its commission for the work it was to perform at 10 per cent, but it was finally forced down to, 1 think, 5 per cent. When asked by members of the committee to state what the construct ing corporation had done or was to do to justify It In asking the Government to pay It 5 per cent on the ships to be built In the Hog Island yard, we wen told that It was the “know how” which they were furnishing the Government; and, Mr. President, I want to sav just here that, after looking over the matter carefully, I am in the bounds of con servatism when 1 say that there was not a member of that corporation who knew any more about sblp building than the Democratic emblem does about the nebular hypothesis or a prairie dog knows about the political economy of the planet Mars. It was just a piece of graft, pure and simple, but they justi fied their extraordinary demand bv sav ing that, If the members of the corpor ation did not themselves know anything about shipbuilding, the corporation fur nished the Government of the United States men who did know how. With the salaries that were paid the men, certainly the United States Government did not need this corporation to act as Its labor agent In securing capable men to do Government work, especially when you consider the fact that the government paid twice and three times as much for their services as they could have gotton from private employers In the labor markets of the country. 1 want the United States Government to deal fairly and Justly with Its citi zens, but I think thu every dollar the Go\ eminent j ays to this corporation as commission on ships built by the ship building plant at Hog Island wilt be nothing less than robbery of the Public Treasury. Mr. President. 1 was about to over look the fact that the plant which these patriots for pelf were to construct at un estimated cost of $21,000,000, 1 am told, has cost over 100,000,000; and I think It has completed but one ship. Of course, 1 want to be fair with them. I am sure they have a good many ships on the ways 1 will ask the chairman of the Committee on Commerce to correct me if lam mistaken. I think the corpor ation has completed but one ship. Am I correct about that? Mr. Fletcher. I think, Mr. President there has been one ship delivered, ac cepted, and put in the service; but there are other ships, I do not know how many more, that are launched. I un derstand that there are other ships on the wavs; lu fact, a ship under con struction on each of the r>() ways. *** Mr. VARDAMAN. If they are building ships. In the language of Robert Bums—lu thu plowman’s phrase —God send them speed. Ido not want to misrepresent them. , Mr. FLETCHER. 1 am sure the Senator does not, and I am simply try ing to help him In that direction by stating the facts; that Is all. Mr. VAUDAMAN. The Senator Is STARKVILLE, MISSISSIPPI, FRIDAY, JANUARY 3, PUD The Red Cross Ready for Peace THE following 1 message has been telegraphed by the War Council of the American Red Cross to each one of the 3,857 chapters: “On February 10th, last year, nearly six weeks be fore the United States declared war, National Red Cross Headquarters advised its chapters to prepare for war. That which has followed in the record of the Red Cross in helping to win this war and to relieve the suffering growing out of it, Constitutes something of which every American citizen has a right to be proud. Every Ameri can Red Cross worker must feel a sense of gratitude in having had a share in it all. “The moment is now come to prepare for peace. Until peace is really here and our soldiers home there can be no relaxation in any Red Cross effort incident to active hostilities. , “But even with peace, let no one suppose that the work of the Red Cross is finished. Millions of American boys are still under arms. Thousands of them are sick and wounded. Owing to the shortage in shipping, it may take a year or more to bring our boys home from France, But whatever the time, our protecting arms must be about them and their families over the whole period which must elapse before the normal life of peace can be re sumed. “Our soldiers and sailors are enlisted until the Com mander-in-Chief tells them there is no more work for them to do in the war. Let every Red Cross member and worker—and this means both men and women show our returning soldiers and sailors that to care for their health, welfare and happiness we are enlisted for no less period than they are. “The cessation of war will reveal a picture of misery such as the world has never seen before, especially in the many countries which cannot help themselves The American people will expect the Red Cross to continue to act as their agent in repairing broken spirits and broken bodies. Peace terms and peace conditions will determine how we may best minister to the vast stricken areas which have been harrowed bv war, and for this great act of mercy the heart and spirit of the American people must continue to be mobilized through the Amer ican Red Cross. “On behalf of the War Council, we accordingly ask each member of our splendid body of workers through out the land to bear in mind the solemn obligation which ref,is upen each one: to ‘carry on.’ We cannot abate one instant in our efforts or in our spirits. There will be abundance of work to do, and specific advices will be given, but even at the moment of peace let no Red Cross worker falter, “Our spirits must now call us to show that not the roar of cannon or the blood of our own alone directs our activities, but that a great people will continue to respond greatly and freely to its obligations and opportunity to serve.” J CANTEENS SERVING U. S. TROOPS IN ITALY The American Rod Cross canteens, which serve at railroad stations. Im portant points on highroads, and In towns and villages throughout the Italian zone of war, are now serving American troops. These canteens have been operating during the past tlx months for the benefit of the Ital ian army and Us allies, greeting the soldiers lu their passage from one point to another with coffee and American crackers and Jam. But It Is only recently that the khakl-clad fighters from across the sea have beeu added to the number of those served at the Red Cross rest stations. Numerous bowling greens have been established by the American Ued Cross In the tuberculosis barracks of Purls. very kind. 1 want to say, Mr. Presi dent, that the lime has come when this robbery of the Government In the name o( patriotism should he stopped; really it should never have been begun. 1 remember when the president of this corporation came before this com mittee. He made the most glorious promises. He said, "We want to build the ships; we want to win the war; send us to the penitentiary after we win the war; but let us build ships.” Of course, the fact that 4 or 5 per cent was paid them upon ihe value of every ship con structed had nothing to do with that burst of patriotism on his part. There are some people in this country who seem to regard It as their God-giv en privilege, belonging exclusively to them, to wrap their well-fed carcasses in the American flag, amt, with the words of patriotism upon their fly blown, impious lips, go over the country de nouncing every body who dares question their right to continue this nefarious business. I, for one, shall continue to denounce It and call attention toll. As soon as I can get bold of tine report of the Department of Justlcnfivhicli deals with this question and fin again go over mure carefully thy /lestlgatluu o f BOYS AWAIT BULLETIN FOR NEWS FROM HOME American soldiers In camps and hos pitals in Great Britain are now able to keep In touch with affairs at home through the medium of a daily bulletin service which has been established by the American Red Cross. Army officers say the service Alls a long-felt want, providing the men with j sporting and home news they cannot find In the English newspapers. The arrival of the bulletin is now 1 one of the big dally events. In this j‘ connection a Red Cross worker in England sends tlie following message to National Headquarters in Wash- 1 ingtou: s ‘‘Afler talking with the hoys about I j the daily news service I have been told to notify you that If Hie bulletin Is discontinued you will be court-mar j tlaled and shot.’* \ the Commerce Committee I shall have more to say on the subject. In the meantime I hope that the Commerce Committee will go further in the mat ter and make a report of the result* of its Investigation. Lot the pltless sun light of publicity shine In upon the dars and devious ways of these patriots for perquisttles. Lot every other en terprise which Is tainted with fraud un dergo similar investigation. It is more necessary that the Republic shall be preserved and the people saved from plunder than that the delicate feelings of these dollar-hearted, sordid-souled sinners shall be respected. 1 repeat, Mr. Hresldenl|, the Hog Island enterprise Is a disgrace to the administration. It is an affront to every man who wore a uniform at home or gave his life for his country in th* trenches of France. It is an outrage upon the tolling taxpayers of the land. WANTED • ' j '>. ’% 1 About two thousand bushels of ear coni H. A. Heattie. HELP BRAVE BELGIANS ORIVyUT ENEMY American Red Cross Aids Wilt Supplies and Comforts in the Equipment of Valiant Army. IT In particularly Interesting te Amer leans to know the tremendoui work which the American Ret Crow has done toward relieving die ; tress In Belgium. Among the man) things done for King Albert’s gallant little army by the Red Cross the fol> lowing are a few : j It established a dining room and reading and writing room at the war* i houses in Le Havre. [ a Plate and a bowl to 6,000 munition workers la to use al their meals. It fitted up recreation rooms tot workers at munition plants. It installed a co-operative restaurant for the military personnel of the Mart time Agency at Le Havre. It Installed ahower baths and a bar ber shop for the army garrisons In Le Havre. In army training centers the Red Cross gave household comforts, phono graphs, games, etc. It established a dormitory for 200 men at the Home for Permlssionairea al Calais. It established a canteen and library at Calais. It established another canteen for the personnel of sanitary trains. It gave material and games for a , canteen for tho personnel of the naval base at . It gave the same for a canteen for the personnel of Belgian seaplane units. It equipped a mess for the personnel I of the unit at Calais. It gave tents, canteens, reading rooms and shower baths for the per? sonnel of the Bourbough bakery. It orgaoized dining rooms *o> searchlight companies and artillery batteries having fixed cantonments, and Installed shower baths in them. It distributed 60,000 enameled plates and cups for soldiers In the trenches. It gave prizes for organized athletic tournaments. It sent presents to each man deco rated for bravery. These presents are ! usually razors, pipes, fountain pens and such. Up to now this work has only applied to the Infantry. The Red Cross provided the appa ratus and films for cinema shows. Eight thousand soldiers see them every day. It supplied books for all soldiers. It Installed a recreation and writing room at the large canteen at La Panne. It presented to every Infantry and cavalry regimental surgeon a medical traveling case, holding a set of medi cal Instruments for field service. This work required an appropria tion of approximately 1,250,000 francs. Straight from the front Is this com ment of a Belgian colonel. It was made recently while he was sitting In his dugout talking of the work of a canteen for which the American Red Cross had Just provided quarters on very short notice. "One live demonstration like this la, better than a year of talk.” American Red Cross has erected q barracks at Dijon, France, to serve as a day nursery for the children of tn French women who work in the United Slates Army camouflage factors. Give Some One EUe The Dice. •Samuel J. Killow, an ex-Con federate veteran living at Wal nut Ridge on Dec. sth, led his eleventh blushing bride to the altar and merely poked his hoary head into the marriage halter. Not being contented in merely throwing “seven,” he tried and tried again, and now he’s throw, ing “eleven.”— Clay County Courier. t Citation Notice. STATE ok MISSISSIPPI, Oktibbeha County: To Ellen I>ougl as:- Yon are commanded to appear before the Chancery Court of the County of Oktibbeha, In said State on the and Monday of March A. I), my to defend thn suit in said Court of Ben Douglas wherein you are the defendant. This the Itth day of December, 1918. •I. B. DONU, Chancery Clerk, NO. 36'