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from coal. And they use continuously 150,000 horse power. It is demonstrated that even under the most unfavorable conditions the Falls can supply the Rand at $25 per horse power.
An initial installation of 20,000 horse power is suggested; and as to construction it is proposed to carry the magic current by stranded cables on parallel
lines of braced steel towers, sixty feet high and 900 feet apart. This seems a long span, but then wind pressures are very moderate in tropical Africa, while snow and sleet are unknown. The steel towers will be embedded in concrete, and the whole line made enormously more solid and shock-resisting than any transmission line previously erected. Mr. Mershon, America's representative in the International Hoard, has designed unique insulators two feet high, after numberless experiments. The power will be sent by continuous current and the initial tension will be 70.C00 volts.
This gigantic scheme has many critics —but, so had railroads when they were suggested. Thus, Professor Ayrton, for many years lecturer on electricity in To
kio antl London, fears attacks from inquisitive savages and angry elephants. '"What is to prevent a kafhr," he asks, "from climbing one of the steel towers and throwing a wire rope across the transmission line, bringing about a short circuit and consequent destruction at that point?"
Another critic objects that the routes to be traversed by the line are terribly unhealthy—full of poisonous mosquitoes, tsetse flies and other poisonous pests; not to mention great snakes, the larger carnivora, and serious minor pests like the white ant, which will eat through the hardest timber. Against this it may be urged that, in the very valley of the Zambesi, the great bridge over the Falls was completed without the loss of a single life from fever. Undoubtedly there are unhealthy spots, such as hamper the most strenuous of African pioneers; but men who do great things are not to be deterred, and point to what has been done at Niagara on a relatively small scale. "Victoria City," they say, "right on the falls, will one day be a mighty industrial emporium, the capital of the United States of Africa, sending its wares' far and wide, not only through the continent, but also to Europe and America."
The initial trial line of 20,000 horse power will probably cost five millions at least; and to cover interest on capital, maintenance, depreciation, and the patrolling of the line, ten per cent must be added to this. The second twenty thousand horse power will of course cost far less than the first. At any rate the projectors of this vastest of engineering schemes have sought the soundest expert advice in all the nations, antl capital is forthcoming to back their opinion that the 35,000,000 horse power of the Victoria Falls can be harnessed for the benefit of fast-growing Africa.
Few realize the incredible treasure that lies in one small section of this country —the Witwatersrand. John Hays Hammond has estimated that gold still remains in the reefs to the unthinkable value of four thousand million dollars. Other estimates are far higher, for mining goes on at 8,000 feet and still finds gold inexhaustible.
In such an amazing center of industry as this—not to mention those being created every day in this vast virgin continent,—the inconceivable power latent in the Great Falls will effect a prodigious economy." The greatest water power in the world is here, and the second comes a mighty long way behind. As I write, a "Grand Hotel" five stories high is about to be opened on the brink of the Falls, with 120 bedrooms, elevators and all the luxuries, almost, of a Fifth Avenue hostelry. It is built after a Byzantine model in the "Park of Peace" on the South side where the vast river bends over into the' abyss.
Here, too. on a commanding site is placed a bronze cast of the late Mr. Watts' statue of "Physical Energy." Yet another park is projected, alsoZoological Gardens which will surely be unique in that lions roam about outside as well as within! Other important
structures are projected on Livingstone . Island, where the river is two miles wide. The place is a paradise for sportsmen, whose canoes may be upset by disgusted hippopotami within a few hundred yards of the Grand Hotel.
As to the power transmission scheme, and the flying cantilever bridge with its double row of rails, it must be said that every effort is made not to interfere with the majesty of the spectacle. Cecil Rhodes himself made conditions in the concession, guaranteeing the integrity of the Falls. And so generations will continue to gaze at this primordial chaos which ages of time have made.
Already a "personally conducted" tour, consisting of a party of the British Association for the Advancement of Science have visited the awful spot and been entertained on the lip of the abyss. Their guide was F. W. Sykes, the District Commissioner, who for nearly five years has explored the mysteries of the gorge, which in places narrows to only fifty yards, for the roaring passage of one of the earth's greatest rivers.
Little did Livingstone, half a century ago, when he braved the spirits of the pearly, luminous spray-clouds,dream that one day a mysterious force should be born there which should transform a tremendous portion of the continent.
■^^""»^^ 111 s h ii ck s. workin's TMM 4^ ^»V. I good for the kids, it keeps them off the streets. They don't mind it, either, it makes them independent. S o m e of them have to work or starve, anyway." said the foreman of a glass factory as he showed us around the works. To him. apparently, his philosophy completely disposed of the child lahor problem. If the youngsters have to work to live, why should we kill them by taking away their work? Humanity is on the side of the men who give them a chance to cat.
But industrial demi-gods have a curi
This is the first of two articles on Child Labor, the second of which will appear in the April issue.—Hp.
ous habit of turning fatalists, and besides, tilings looked suspicious.
"Say, Air. Murphy, what's that high fence for that you've got all around the plant? When we came down here the first thing we ran up against was a high fence with barbed wire on top, and z watchman at the gate."
"That fence? Why every glass works has a fence around it. That's just to keep the kids on the night shift from running away," said the obliging foreman.
This began to grow interesting. Perhaps the rather husky Yirgilian shade who was piloting us through this modern inferno would betray himself again.
We were standing in a smoke-blackened barn with two large whiskey-jug furnaces for the centers of interest. There were a score of openings cut in the sides of the fat ovens and around them