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work much more smoothly. Material and supplies were being handled with a degrue of promptness not known in earlier days. The service on the railroad also began to improve. At one time in 1905, it took all the way from three weeks to two monthis to get a consignment across the Isthmus from Colon, which caused it storm of protests from the local merchants. The delay did not occur in the trane sit across, but was attributable to an enormous congestion of freight at the northern end of the road, and lack of proper facilities in handling. Among other measures passeel by Congress in 1906 relating to the canal, restricting the purchases of material in equipment for its use, to articles of domestic production and inanufacture, except in cases where the price or bid was plainly unreasonable.
Army Engineers in the Saddle.
The year 1907 witnessed another line-up in the personnel of the Isthmian Canal Commission. The first break occurred on September 2,5, 1906 with the transfer of Governor Magoon to Cuba. The final «lisintegration began with the resignation of Mr. John F. Stevens which canne about with a degree of suddenness only equalled in the case of Mr. Wallace. Mr. Stevens' resignation however, did not become effective until April 1. Meanwhile the resignation of Chairman Shonts took effect March 1, and the remainder of the Commission on March 16.
According to : Washington dispatch, Nr. Stevens became alarm:d over the possibility of awarding the tract, of constructing the canal to the Oliver-Bangs combination, and wrote a letter to the President setting forth that the canal organization had been pretty well perfected; that more dirt had been taken ont during the past thirty days than was ever taken out before in the
same time; that he did not care to share the work of building the canal with anyone, nor be hampered with men less familiar with the subject than himself. He intimated that if his
Army Engineers who will dig Arm
The Panama Canai.
sever his connection with the undertaking. wishes were not complied with he would feel compelled to
Aíc;. 16. b. Sisert.
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The letter is reported to have been something of a shock to the President, who after deliberation cabled Stevens acceptance of his resignation. With the retirement of the Shonts Commission, the plan of carrying on the work under what might be termed civilian direction abandoned, and steps were at once taken toward putting the project in charge of the army organization. This end was effected by the appointment of a commission consisting of the following:
Lieut.-Col. Geo. W. Goethals, U.S.A.,Chairman and Chief Engineer.
Under the new arrangement the positions of Chairman and Chief Engineer were combined, and it quired that all the Commissioners take station permanently on the Isthmus Later work was divided as follows:Col. Goethals to have general charge; Maj. Gaillard to have charge of the Department of Excavation and Dredging; Maj. Sibert, Department of Locks and Dam Construction; Mr. Rousseau, Departments of Municipal Engineering, Motive Power and Machinery, and Building-Construction; Mr. Blackburn, Head of the Department of Civil Admin
istration and Governor of the Canal Zone; Col. Gorgas, Chief Sanitary Officer, Head of the Department of Sanitation; Mr. Jackson Smith, Manager of the Department of Labor, Quarters & Subsistence, and Mr. Joseph Bucklin Bishop, as Secretary of the Commission, and in charge of The Canal Record, the official I. C. C. organ. Under the Executive order of November 17, 1906, the judiciary and canal zone government was combined under the name of Law and Government, with Mr. Richard Reid Rogers, General Counsel, in charge. The civil government later transferred to the Isthmus and now comes under the heall of Department of Civil Administration.
At the time Col. Goethals took charge there much talk about militarism. Shortly after his arrival, a reception was given him at the Corozal Hotel. On this subject he said, “I will say that I expect to be the Chief of the division of engineers, while the heads of the various departments are going to be colonels, the foremen are going to be the captains, and the men who do the labor are going to be the privates. There will be no more militarism in the future than there has been in the past. I am no longer a commander in the United States Army. I now consider I am commanding the Army of Panama, and that the enemy we are going to combat is the Culebra cut, and the locks and dams at both ends of the 'canal. Every man here who does his duty will never Cituse to complain on account of militarism.”
The Canal Route-Plans Amended.
On December 9, 1907, a special report was made by the Chairman of the Commission to the Secretary of War, recommending locks and dams at Miraflores, instead of at La Boca. This does away with the necessity for Lake Sosa, and the Sosa-Corozal and La Boca-San Juan dams. It also probably removes the necessity of changing the
site of old La Boca, and saves many legal preliminaries in connection with the securing of private lands in the submerged area contemplated by Lake Sosa. A brief sketch of the canal by sections, and the work that is being done is given herewith:
LIMON HARBOR CHANNEL.--The harbor channel of the canal at the Atlantic end begins at a point in Limon Bay about half a inile outside of a line drawn across from Manzanillo Point, to Point Toro. The width of the channel's mouth will be approximately 1,000 feet, and the opening will be protected by converging jetties. The channel from this point to the mouth of the Mindi River, a distarce of four and one-half miles, will have bottom width of 500 feet, and will be dredged to a depth of 40 feet. At Mindi where the canal proper starts the ground is only a little above sea level, but rises until at Gatun 2.6 miles away, the elevation is 85 feet.
GATUN DAN.-Gatun is the site of the great dam destined to impound the waters of the Chagres. The dam will be of eartli work riprapped in the portions most exposed to wear. The top of the dam is to be 100 feet wide, and its crest will be 50 feet above the normal lake level. The width of the dam at water level will be 371 feet, and at sea level 2,625 feet. Its total length will be in the neighborhood of 1700 feet, and its height 135 feet. The cross-section of the dam has been slightly changed from the original plans; the upstream slope is to be more gradual. A spillway will be constructed through the dam and work on this was begun in April, 1907.
GATUN LOCKS.Gatun is also the site of a triple flight of locks. The original plans called for locks with usable lengths of 1,000 feet, and widths of 100 feet. During 1907, the question was raised as to whether the width as planned would be sufficient for future requirements. It is now proposed to increase their width to 110 or 120 feet. The President in his message to Congress in Decem