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UYERSITY OF CAU

INVESTIGATION OF PANAMA CANAL MATTERS.

HEARINGS

BEFORE THE

COMMITTEE ON INTEROCEANIC CANALS

OF THE

UNITED STATES SENATE

IN THE MATTER OF THE SENATE RESOLUTION

ADOPTED JANUARY 9, 1906,

PROVIDING FOR

AN INVESTIGATION OF MATTERS RELATING .

TO THE PANAMA CANAL, ETC.

FRANK FEUILLE
30 ROCKEFELLER PLAZA
NEW YORK, N. Y.

Vol. I.

MOPHETTO
TBANK FEDHA

10 ESOAPSAR
WASHINGTON:

GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE.

Documents Dept.

J60

I 6 59th vil

DOCUMENTS

DEPT.

HEARINGS BEFORE SENATE COMMITTEE ON INTEROCEANIC

CANALS ON SENATE RESOLUTION PROVIDING FOR AN INVESTIGATION OF MATTERS RELATING TO THE PANAMA CANAL, ETC.

WASHINGTON, D. C., Thursday, January 11, 1906. The committee met at 10.30 o'clock a. m.

Present: Senators Millard (chairman), Kittredge, Dryden, Hopkins, Knox, Ankeny, Morgan, Gorman, and Simmons.

Also the Hon. William H. Taft, Secretary of War.

The committee thereupon proceeded with hearings under the following resolution of the Senate, adopted January 9, 1906:

Resolved, That the Committee on Interoceanic Canals, or any subcommittee thereof, be, and are hereby, authorized and directed to investigate all matters relating to the Panama Canal and the government of the Canal Zone and the management of the Panama Railroad Company, to send for persons and papers, and to administer oaths, and employ a stenographer to report such hearings; and that the committee bé authorized to sit during the sessions or recess of the Senate, and that all expenses thereof be paid out of the contingent fund of the Senate.

PRELIMINARY STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIAM H. TAFT, SECRE

TARY OF WAR.

The CHAIRMAN (Senator MILLARD). Gentlemen, we have asked the Secretary to come here this morning to explain to us the situation up to the present time. He is present now, and I presume we are ready to have him proceed with his statement. I think that if the Secretary will state the case himself, in his own way, it will be more satisfactory, to start with at least, than anything that we might suggest.

Secretary TaFt. Mr. Chairman, I of course do not like to break into the order that the committee selects in this investigation. We are very anxious to have it just as thorough as possible, and to afford to the committee every possible opportunity for investigation. But I am sure the committee would wish to make its investigation square with the needs of the public service on the Isthmus. Mr. Stevens, the chief engineer, is now in the city. He is here primarily for the purpose of advising the Isthmian Canal Commission upon the issues which will be presented to them by the two reports-the majority report and the minority report of the Consulting Board. I received this morning a cablegram from General Davis, the chairman, who went abroad to complete and have signed the majority report, saying that it will be mailed to-day, and will reach here in due course of mail.

I presume that when that report reaches bere the minority report will also be filed, and that then Mr. Stevens will have before him the material upon which to make his recommendations. He has himself MS83192

3

filed a report in advance of having seen either of these reports, so I have no doubt that what he will have to say subsequently will be more in the nature of comment and much shorter than it would be if he had delayed action until the end. But he is very anxious to return to the İsthmus as soon as he completes that matter, and I was going to suggest to the committee that Mr. Stevens be first called, so that his testimony may be given in full before I am called, for I am here all the time that is, I hope to be.

I would also like to state that Major Gallagher, who was the assistant purchasing agent of the Commission, has been detailed to go to Manila. He is a major in the commissary department, and for, I think, nearly all of the time of the existence of the original Commission under Admiral Walker--part of the time, certainly; indeed, down to to-day—he has had more or less to do with the purchasing of materials for the Commission. And in case the committee desires to go into the question of those purchases, as doubtless it does and ought to, he would be an important witness with reference to many of the purchases.

Senator MORGAN. When does he have to go?

Secretary Taft. He sails the 1st of February, so that he would have to leave here probably the latter part of January.

The CHAIRMAN. He is in the city now, is he not? He lives here?

Secretary Taft. He is in the city now. I saw him this morning, and told him that I thought the committee would probably need bis services. I presume (though of course I have no means of knowing other than natural inference) that my examination may be with reference to a good deal that these gentlemen who have done the things may testify to, and therefore what I can say would come naturally after they have testified. Therefore, I would ask the committee to excuse me and take up the examination of these gentlemen, whose presence here is only temporary, and whose going will greatly benefit, the one the army service and the other the canal service.

The CHAIRMAN. In conversation with Mr. Stevens yesterday, Mr. Secretary, I understood from him that he was anxious to get away as soon as possible; so that arrangement has been made with him to appear before the committee on Tuesday next, and he is to appear here at that time—at 10.30 on Tuesday next.

Secretary TAFT. Very well, then.

The CHAIRMAN. That is the regular meeting of the committee, and he will be here at that time.

Secretary Taft. Yes, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. As to Major Gallagher we have not fixed any time, because I assumed that the testimony of Mr. Stevens would probably take some little time.

Secretary TAFT. Yes, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. But we can call on him later. I inferred from what you said yesterday that you would like to appear first and make the preliminary statement that you have now made.

Secretary Taft. Yes; I merely wanted to explain the general situation. Of course there are doubtless people now on the Isthmus whom the committee will desire to hear, and any communication sent to me will result in a cablegram direct to the Isthmus to have them come at

You may ordinarily count on its taking about two weeks to get such persons here; not that it takes two weeks to come, but that that

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