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The I.C.C. Sanitarium at Taboga Island Panama. Istkmian-American HP.R.A. News Agency & Advertising Bureau. A Bienkowski.
A Varied Assortment of
Always on Hand.
Commission employes on the Isthmus, and in part to the great liberality with which these were formerly treated in the matter of passes.
Inasmuch as the Isthmian Canal Commission pays to the Panama Railroad Company a certain sum monthly (said to be $5,000 at the present time) for passenger transportation, the increase or decrease of such sum being dependent upon the amount of travel, it behooved the former to curtail these privileges to some extent. Notwithstanding, gold employes are allowed a courtesy pass once a month, while the privilege of half rates is extended to all classes of employes and their families at any time.
Most of the freight is now hauled across the Isthmus night. The completion of the Tehuantepec Railway does not appear to have had any appreciable effect on the trans-Isthmian business to date, while the local business is constantly increasing in volume. The freight traffic is generally heaviest during the months of January and February when the coffee crops of Ecuador and Central America are moving.
Some Railroad Earnings.
The railroad paid dividends on its capital stock every year from 1853 to 1892. The smallest dividend - f during this entire period was two per cent, in 1885,
1885, and the largest 44 per cent. in 1868. In 1865 the capital stock was increased from $5.000,000 to $7.000,000. In 1881,
the last year that the railroad was owned by American capitalists, a dividend of 52 1/2 per cent. declared. This however, not only represented the earnings of that year, but included the assets on hand at the time the road was sold to the French canal company. The average annual dividend paid from earnings of the company
from 1853. to 1881, was a fraction less than five per cent. The road had always been a financial success, and while under the control of the American stockholders, exceedingly profitable.
The original cost of the Panama Railroad. was little over $8,000,000. During the first ten years of its operation -it transported over $700,000,000 worth of specie and 300,000 bags of mail, and it is said that not a dollar of the specie nor a bag of mail was ever lost during this periods
Future of the Railroad.
In the investigation of the Panama Railroad Company made by a committee of the United States House of Representatives in 1905, the following question was asked by Mr. John J. Esch, - Representative from : Wisconsin:--
When the canal is finally completed, the railway line will be devoted almost wholly to local traffic, will it not:? .
Mr. William Nelson Cromwell, the railroad's counsel, then under examination, replied: --
*** That is a very interesting question Mr. Esch; , and one upon which traffic men differ .... I do not share the opinion that the Panama Railroad will become valueless, at that time. No man can judge what will be the conditions ten years hence, with the new traffic element (the canal) as a : practical thing before it - not a theory as to-day. The railroad will probably then be operated by electric power generated ..... at one of the
great water-power points. Electricity will be inexpensively produced on the line of the canal by water-power,
and the railroad bay
be operated in that way, thus greatl; reducing the cost of operation. At that time too, we will have paid off the first mortgage out of carniugs and our fixed charge will thus be reduced; the local business will be active, and Panama and Colon will be far more important than they are to-lay. Nearly every passenger approaching the canal by steamer will disembark at one or the other turmini, and taking the quiet railroad transit across the Isthmus, will visit the cities and observe the interesting sights during the day, while the steamer is passing through the canal. The steamer will enter the canal at sunrise at Colon, say, and will make its exit at Panama at sunset, and the passenger in the meantime will have passed over the electric railroad and be amusing himself in either city while the steamer is moving through the canal. The local traffic will have grown to importance; the country will have developed, and business will have sprung up along the line of road, thereby furnishing local traffic.”
At Colon, the Panama Railroad Company has three wooden wharves, and one fine new dock completed in 1906 (Dock 11), at which all of its steamers now land. There are two other wharves at this point, one owned by the Royal Mail Steamship Co., and the other, now out of repair, by the Pacific Mail S. S. Co. The port and terminal at La Boca was completed and opened to commerce
TUNG ON TAI & Co. No. 23 Front Street, Colon, Republic of Tanaina.
SPLENDID LINE OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE SILKS.
Tourists and visitors to the Isthmus dre cordially invited to Inspect Our Goods.
WE ALSO INVITE ATTENTION TO
Our complete Stock of Fine Liquors.