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the Association told its members to hold to enter into a contract, secured by bond fast; and, sure enough, after a while the of $5,000 to $10,000, guaranteeing that Trust, which had been bluffing so hard, the packing shall be honestly and skilwas obliged to weaken, finding itself fully done. Men employed for the purcompelled, whether it would or not, to pose go from one prizing house to anpurchase some of the tobacco held by the other during the prizing season, to see growers' organization. The Italian Gov- that the work is properly executed, and, ernment ran short, and was obliged to if not, to admonish and warn. The orbuy a considerable quantity; later on ganization is not satisfied to provide or more was sold, and again more, until to- inflict penalties; it must be sure that none day, out of nearly 24,000 hogsheads, less of its tobacco that is not up to standard than fifty remain on hand.
in all respects shall be put upon the marThis was the crop of the year 1904. ket. Accordingly, it employs bonded inThe crop of 1906 is not yet packed, the spectors, who examine the product and planters being now engaged in delivering make sure that the labels on the hogsit to the “prizing houses,” where it is heads correctly describe the contents. sorted and put into the hogsheads. Of The tobacco is finally put away in the the latter crop the Association, it is ex- storehouses. But, as was not the case pected, will have under its control, in under the old system, the product is sold Kentucky and Tennessee, not less than by officers regularly appointed for that 40,000 hogsheads. For the organization purpose—officers, that is to say, of the has been largely increasing its territory Association.
Association. And, by an expert system and membership; and only a few months of classifying, the buyer is enabled to ago it acquired additional strength by ab- ascertain exactly where he can find the sorbing the Dark Tobacco Assocation of kind and quality of goods he requiresVirginia. When a little more territory so many hogsheads in Warehouse A, SO in Kentucky has been brought in, to- many in Warehouse K, and so on. Natgether with a small part of Maryland urally, this arrangement greatly faciliwhich raises export tobacco, the whole of tates operations. the region that produces this kind of So far the Association seems to be weed will be embraced in the movement. winning.
winning. It does not wish to crush the The Association now controls 150 priz- Trust, but merely to place itself on such ing houses, each one of which is obliged a basis that it shall be able to deal with the combination on equal terms. The The planters, some time ago, appealed planters, in a word, are no longer to be to President Roosevelt for help in their at the mercy of the Octopus. And, as fight against the monopoly. He rea measure of self-protection, the organi- sponded with enthusiasm; and for two zation will in future require the Trust years past the Department of Justice has to make its purchases in bulk—the idea been trying to get at the Trust, employbeing that if it were allowed to do other- ing skilful lawyers for the purpose, but wise, it would purchase a small quantity as yet without very satisfactory results. here, another small quantity there, and so It is perfectly well known that an agreeon, until all track would be lost of what ment exists by which the American Toit had bought. Under such circumstances bacco Company, the Imperial Tobacco it might quietly accumulate a stock of Company, and the Italian Purchasing tobacco so large as to render it tempo- System act together, but the difficulty is rarily independent of the growers—a sit- to prove the fact. If it could be proved, uation which would be disadvantageous the combination might be broken up by to the latter.
process of law. Under the new system, the sales are Meanwhile the Association has been so concentrated that the planter is at trying to persuade Congress to release all times fully acquainted with such deal- the planters from the tax of six cents a ings in the commodity as have occurred, pound which is levied on all leaf tobacco and thus cannot be misled as to the real that the grower sells otherwise than pervalue of his product. He himself does sonally and directly to the buyer. This not know how to handle and classify his means that he must himself hand it out crop, owing to which fact he has not and receive the money for it; he cannot hitherto been on equal terms with the depute the duty to an employee, or even
to his own wife. Now, it is urged that no other agricultural product in this country is taxed; so why should not this burden be lifted from the shoulders of the struggling tobacco farmer?
As a matter of fact, it ought to be removed, and the House of Representatives has already passed a bill to such an effect. The President would undoubtedly sign it, but the Senate balks, opponents of the measure taking the ground that it would reduce the revenues of the Government. Trust influences, as everybody knows, are strong in the Senate.
Nearly all of the "herb nicotian" that we export is dark tobacco, which is greatly preferred by Europeans, containing more nicotine, and being proportionately stronger. Most people in this country like the "bright" tobacco, the growers of which, it may be said, are crowded quite as hard by the Trust as the planters
of the export weed, like methods being MACHINE FOR SEPARATING HEAVIER (SUPERIOR) TOBACCO
employed to drive out independent buySeed is in lower part of glass tube. Operating the bellows ers. When a condition of things is throws the lighter seed out at the top.
reached where there are many thousands
of producers and only one buyer, the Oclarge buyers, who employ experts; but, topus occupying that exclusive position, as matters are now arranged, he escapes the situation is so far perfected as to this disadvantage, because such buyers swell the money-bags of the monopoly to are compelled to make their purchases the utmost practicable point. through the Association.
The bright tobacco growers are themselves organizing to fight the Trust, but At the present time, some new tobaccoas yet their movement is in its infancy. growing territory is being developed in It is high time that they did something; parts of this country—as, for example, for the monopoly, warned by its experi- in the northeastern section of South ence in the dark tobacco region, has been Carolina, where, in two counties, a spetrying to accumulate a supply large cially fine grade of cigarette and pipe toenough to last for eighteen months or bacco, light in color, is being raised. Antwo years, so as to be in a position to other such region is on the Gulf coast of
starve the rebellious farmers into submis- Texas, where a particularly excellent sion. The planters are poor, and, inas- cigar tobacco is being grown from Cumuch as they cannot possibly live for a ban seed. The total number of acres deyear and a half without any money, they voted to the weed in the United States, would be likely under such circumstances however, has greatly diminished during to succumb.
the last half-dozen years-a fact made There is a bright tobacco district in sufficiently evident by the figures already Virginia, another in northern Kentucky, given, relating to the annual output. Á and another in North Carolina. The drop of 235,129,556 pounds during that Kentucky planters have their headquar- length of time in one of our most importers at Lexington. A short time ago, tant crops, affords a vivid notion of the being seized with an idea, they asked the amount of damage that can be done to warehouse owners of Louisville to ad- our national prosperity by a single unvance money on their tobacco, so that scrupulous combination of capital. they could hold it until the market needed During the calendar year 1905, we exit—the idea being to prevent the Octopus ported 292,925,181 pounds of tobacco. from getting hold of it and storing it Of this output, Austria (the Italian Puraway. Their astonishment as well as chasing System incidentally supplies the dismay may be imagined, when they as- Austrian Government) took the best; certained that the warehouses
Italy absorbed the next best quality ; Gerowned by the American Tobacco Com- many, the next; France, the next; and pany.
Spain, the poorest and cheapest. From
this statement, which may be accepted as as rather a unique event in industrial official, one is able to judge of the degree history. It is probably the only recorded of connoisseurship which the various instance in which the producers of a peoples of Europe may be said to ex- great agricultural crop have risen against hibit in regard to the narcotic weed. an oppressive monopoly and fought it
At the same time, it is almost impos- successfully. The Octopus, it is true, sible for an American to find a cigar or has not yet given up the struggle, and even a pipe tobacco anywhere in Europe it holds an unrelaxed grip upon the that to his taste seems good, simply for growers of the herb for domestic conthe reason that the herb, in crossing the sumption; but it has received a sickenocean, undergoes a change which spoils ing blow; and so far as present indicait for us. A Havana cigar is quite a tions show, the time is likely to arrive different thing over there. But the Euro- before long when organization among peans enjoy the flavor given by the salt- the tobacco planters of the entire counwater passage; and the Germans actually try will be so far perfected as to enable prefer tobacco that has made the voyage them to defy control by any combination by sail, thus absorbing more of the air of capital—a situation which, once of the sea. They even want it to make 'achieved, will inevitably raise the price the trip in warm weather, when the ab- paid to the farmers and, as a result, exsorption is more rapid.
pand the territory devoted to the weed, One may regard the rebellion of the augmenting the annual output propordark tobacco farmers against the Trust tionately.
Tiny Master of Vast Engines
By Charles Frederick Carter
N a large building beside comes from it, no vibration can be felt,
a file of soldiers on parade. goal toward which inventive genius has To any one not on terms of intimate daily been groping for two thousand years, association with them the presence of The nebulous idea which first presented this battery of engines is awe-inspiring. itself to the perceptions of Hero, of AlexThey are so large that the oilers climbing andria, one hundred and twenty years around on their steel ladders suggest ants before Christ was born, which has bafcrawling over a barrel. Their intricate fled the brains of the ablest experimentequipment of cylinders and steam chests ers in thermo-dynamics in the age of and drums and pipes and stuffing boxes steam, has at last attained its perfect form and valves and rods and levers, the noise in the mind of a New York engineer. and the motion, create an overwhelming The concrete expression of the idea impression of power.
stands on a circular floor space fifteen In a corner much too small to afford feet in diameter—a steam turbine capable room for one of the great engines stands of generating 7,000 horsepower. a cylindrical object of comparatively While only one-eighth the weight of modest size, unlike anything usually metal required to build one of the vertical found in engine rooms. Not a sound compound units at the other end of the