Democratic watchman. (Bellefonte, Pa.) 1855-1940, March 07, 1890, Image 4

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    Year, in Advance
Bellefonte, Pa., March7, 1890.
Terns, £2.00 a
Can It be Possible ?
In the bridge account as furnished
by the Commissioners in their annual
statement, will be found the following
item :
“Spring Mills bridge,” 8. C. Decker, put-
ting on new plank....oocvninnennnnenn. $62.72
Now the allegation is made that this
48. C. Decker” is none other than a
representative of JouN D. DECKER, one
of the County Commissioners, and in
this instance was used as a blind to
cover up a transaction that robbed the
county of just $38.72 in the matter of
planking the bridge above named. Ira
BARGER, of Spring Mills, sawed and fur-
nished the piank for this job, for which
his charge was $21.00. He and his
hirad man put them on the bridge in
one day, for which they made the ad-
ditional charge of $3.00, makinga total
for sawing, furnishing and putting the
plank in their place,of $24.00, a job for
which the county is compelled to pay
to a representative of the Commission-
er who had the work in charge,the sum
of $62.72.
If these facts are true, and we have
them from a source that we con-
sider entirely reliable, is it to be won-
dered at that the county is getting into
debt, and that an increase of taxation is
staring everybody in the face as a re:
gult of the management of the present
board of County Commissioners ?
If we are wrong in this case our
columns are open to Commissioner
Decker to set the matter right.
Country Roads.
Never before was there shown so
much interest in the improvement of
country roads as there is at the present
time. It is becoming a generally rec-
ognized fact that the highways on
which the travel and traffic of the
country districts are done, do not com-
port with the advanced civilization of
this age, and this conviction has been
strengthened this winter by the condi-
tion of the roads which have for months
been subjected to a mud blockade. It
is easy enough to comprehend the in-
eonvenience, but there is no estimating
the loss from the stoppage of trade,
which have resulted from the condi-
tion of roads rendered impassable by
the mad of this unusually wet season.
For weeks farmers have been unable to
bring their produce to market, suffer-
ing a complete embargo on their busi:
ness, and when they have ventured up-
on the roads the strain upon their
horses and vehicles, and the loss of
time, have materially reduced the pro:
fit of their trips. The embarrassment
and loss sustained during the past win-
ter from this cause, may, however, be
compensated by an improvement of the
country roads brought about by the
peculiar experience of the muddiest sea-
son on record.
The necessity
roads is generally admitted. The se-
rious question is how it can be effect
ually done without being oppressively
expensive to the farmers, who, after
paying their taxes—tariff and other
kinds—are not in a sitnation to incur
heavy expenses for road making. The
present method of constructing the
country highways is unquestionably a
failure. The State Board of Agricul
ture’s Committee on Roads is engaged
in devising a general road law for the
State, and is being favored with sug-
gestions and advice from many qnar-
ters. Itseems to be the impression of
some that we should have good roads
without much expenditure of means.
While this is impossible, it should be
the object of those who shall frame the
new law to produce the best results
with the least expense. What is done
in the construction of roads should be
done thoroughly, with the intention of
being permanent. It is the necessity
of coustaut repairing that makes bad
roads, cheaply made, the most expen-
sivein the end. There seems to be
reason and equity in the suggestion
that the State should bear a part of the
for improving the
cost of making and keeping the high-
ways in repair, as they are not local 1n
their use, but constitute a part of a
general system of communication in-
tended for the use, convenience and ad-
vantage of all the citizens of the State
who have occasion totravel over them.
-—— On Tuesday the Iowa Legisla-
ture re-elected Senator Arison by a
reduced majority. If the Democrats
of that State had known their strength
and fully exerted it at the last election,
ALLISON, as a Senator, would now be
in the vocative. What a pity that the
young Sampson of tariff reform in lowa
didn’t know last year how strong he
was. But he will hump himself vext
fall, :
Spring Straws. |
The Spring elections in various
States have Leen very favorable and
encouraging to the Democrats. Tariff
reform education is showing its good
effect on public sentiment in Towa, the
recent municipal elections proving that
the impression male, as demonstrated
by last fall's election, is permanent and
extending. Districts which never be-
fore gave Democratic majorities were
easily carried by the Democrats on the
4th inst. Des Moines, the capital of
the State, did the unusual thing of
electing a Democratic Mayor and the
entire Democratic municipal ticket.
The Democrats carried Fort Dodge for
the first time in the history of the city.
Ottumwa, the home of Captain Hutch-
inson, who was the defeated Republi-
can candidate for Governor last fall, al-
so went Democratic, and reports gen-
erally throughout the State show large
Democratic gains.
In New York the spring elections in
many counties show the same tenden-
cy, indicating the great harvest of tar-
iff reform that will be gathered in
——A contemporary, with pardon-
able pride in the magnificent physical
features of our country, brags of the fact
that on account of the prevailing over-
flow the ;Ohio and Mississippi rivers
at the point of confluence are each fifty
miles wide, and asks what other coun-
try can make such an exhibit? With-
out wishing to detract from the natur-
al magnificence of the Great Republic,
we venture to remark that the Ama-
zen river fw more than oo Sundred miles
wide at its mouth without the aid of an
overflow to swell the volume of its
The Fence Law.
A subscriber to the Warcaman at
Frenchville,Clearfield county, writes us
requesting the publication of the Fence
Law as now in force within the State,
and also asks us to give the counties in
which it is lawful for cattle to run at
large, as well as those in which they
are required to be herded, or kept en-
The only fence law now in force and
which ean in any way be termed gener:
ral since the repeal of the act of 1700’
is the act of 1784, which applies only
to the territory included at the time of
its enactment within the counties of
Huntingdon, Bedford, Fayette, West-
moreland and Northumberland, and is
as follows:
All worm fences shall be four feet and a half
high, with sufficient stakes and riders added
thereon, and that the under rail in each pan-
nel shall not exceed five inches from the
surface of the ground, and the first four rails
in each pannel shall not exceed five inches
wide between the rails, and t. at the said fence
shall have at least four feet worm ; and that all
post and rail fence shall be four feet and a half
high, and the distance between the rails as
aforesaid. And be it further enacted that,
from and after the passage of this act, it shall
not be lawful for any person or persons, to kill,
take or carry away any swine, shoat or pig,
but in case of trespassing through or over
any lawful fences as aforesaid, to take and umn-’
pound the same,and to obtain and recover such
damages, in the same way and manner as
is hereafter directed.
As Clearfield county was a part of
the ‘territory included within the
boundaries of the above named conuties
at the time of the enactment of the
law of 1784, its provisions consequently
apply to that county, unless changed or
annulled by some local law since
passed of which we have no knowledge.
There is no general or local law foi
any part of the State making it lawful
for cattle to run at large, or providing
damages for their owners should
they be injured while
Centre and Erie counties have euact-
ments requiring railroad companies to
pay damages for stock killed or injured
where the railroads are not fenced, but
know of no other counties in
which stock raisers haveany protection
of this kind. ' Neither is there any law
pronibiting cattle from
be doing so.
running at
| large, except in such counties as have
special acts on this subject.
Since the repeal of act of 1700 catile
running at large do so atthe risk of
7 : : ;
f'here is protection for
nothing but hogs by the act’ of 1784
given above.
the owner.
A Greater Danger.
The Legislature of Virginia having
ordered the printing, for public cirenla-
tion, of Senator DaNIEL'S oration 02 the
life and character of JEFFERSON Davis,
the Republican papers have set up a
howl about it as an evidence of South-
ern disloyalty, and may include it
among their many alleged reasons for
the interference of the administration
with the local politics of the South.
Jerr Davis’ conduct antagonized the
perpetuity of our government, but in a
more insidious way the reckless pol:
iticians of the Republican party, by
their corrupt and unconstitutional
practices, menace the Republic with »
greater danger, because it is more diffi
cult the prevent the accomplishment of
their designs.
--— The cable brings intelligenec of
the death of young ABraHAM LINCOLN,
son of the American Minister at the
Court of St James. On account of
his descent and the name he bore the
American people take a sad interest in
the decease of the grandson of a Presi-
dent whose honesty and patriotism
contrast strongly with the conduct of
the present Republican leaders.
Our Boston correspondent, in
writing about the “distinguished” men
of that city, makes a singular selection
in choosing Joseru Cook to start with,
If Cook is distinguished for anything
in particular, it is for his being an ass.
A Granger's Plain Talk on Pro tection.
Hon. Gerard C. Brown, Lecturer of the
Grange, Tells the Ways and Means
Comvmittee What Sort of Pro-
tection the Farmers Receive
from the Tariff.
We copy the following from the re-
marks recently made before the Ways
and Means committee of Congress by
Hon. Gerard C. Brown ; Lecturer of the
Pennsylvania State Grange:
The census of 1880 disclosed a loss of
nearly $68,000,000 in the actual value of
the farms and indicated annual shrink-
age in the market value of products.
What this depreciation may amount to
now can onlv be estimated, in the ab-
sence of available data. But we see the
evidence of it on every hand. Farming
land, when sold, brings lower and still
lower prices, and no wonder, for there is
not a single staple farm crop which is
produced at a profit.
It is dificult, in many sections, to
find a purchaser for any mere farm,
especially one of any size. If located
near some town so that itis ava'lable
for building purposes,it often commands
good prices, but this is a speculative val-
ue and is not based on its productive
capacity for farming land.
This depreciation amounts to as much
as 50 per cent. in the case of the richest
and most productive farmsin the very
best farming districts of the State.
I am a farmer of York country,living
midway between York and Columbia,
say 8 miles from either, 36 miles from
Harrisburg, 50 from Baltimore, less than
100 from Philadelphia,somewhat farther
from New York and Washington, not
far from the great emporiums ot the
country, and surrounded by its great
manufacturing industrial centres.
A location which should afford good
home markets if any can.
And yet our wheat has averaged below
$1 per bushel, below cost of production,
for sometime past. It is now 74 to 76
cents per bushel. Corn from 36 to 40
cents. Fattening beef, once a very pro-
fitable venture,has declined enormously.
It is rave for feeders to get market |
price for their corn. Tobacco raising
no longer pays, when the risk and out-
lay of so expensive a crop is taken into
consideration. Dairying,to which many
have turned for refuge, even when, as
in our own neighborhood, it is conducted
under the best approved system, 1s not
Creamery stock is dead stock.
More farms were sold under the ham-
mer 1n York county last year than ever
before. In Berks county there were
more sheriff’s sales than in any three
previous years. This was not on account
of any failure in crops, which were
above the average.
The highest prices paid for our
beeves, which, of course, comprise our
choicest cattle, is for expor?d.
Even poultry, butter and eggs must
be shipped to Philadelphia, New York
or Baltimore to command paying prices,
as for instance, turkeys now bringing 16
cents in New York, are now worth but
10 cents in York, and yet in New York
they are sold in competition with those
of all parts of the country, even from
the boundless West.
Our creamery butter—no better can
be made —has not averaged 20 cents a
pound, and has been below 15 cen'ls this
The fact is that prices are too low to
yield a living profit, while taxes remain
unrediced and the expenses of living are
disproportionate to our means of meeting
The protective system has not, especi-
ally in the case of those farmers living
near to the protected interests, resulted
in the protection which was promised
to them —that of an ample and sufficient
home market. Hence the loss of profit
on their products followed by loss of
value of their farms, which, unless
checked, must result in the loss of the
farms themselves.
Pennsylvania farmers are not alone
“confronted” with this ‘‘condition.” In
New England the dry rot is still worse.
Lacking some of our great natural ad-
vantages they “sooner went to the
I quote from a recent report © “There
are 887 deserted farms in New Hamp-
shire, with buildings in a fair state of
repair, or that might easily be made fit
for occupancy. This inforination has
been received in reply to an official
circular of the State Commissioners of
: hay $2 per ton.
Finigration, making inguiry of the
Selectmen of 160 towns. These deserted
farms all lie in easy reach of the busy
factories of New England. They have
the home market with all its advau-
taves, and area fair sample of the way
thie hon®e marketenviches the husband- |
While in New York, Massachusetts |
land Connecticut we do not have sim-
ilar information, the traveler will no- |
| tice that deserted farms are not unknown, |
and itis a fact that hundreds of farms
can be purchased in these States for
less than the cost of buildings, making
the land practically free of cost to the
In Illinois the report of the Bureau
of Labor Statistics for 1887 shows,
“Farra indebtedness in the year 1870
to be $65,721,908; 1880, $103,237;
1887, $123,783,008.
Also that the “mortage indebtedness
of farmers for borrowed money has in- |
crea-ed 23 per cent, since 1880—morve |
than twice the increase of farm lands.”
We also learn that the indebtedness
represented by western morteages agore-
gates $3.422,000,000, or $200 per capita
for 17,000,000 people of those Slates.
From Kansas a private letter from an
old resident, a former Pennsvlvaman,
who moved out to the Neosho Valley in
18 6, a good business man, says: Times
are very close—never so hard before.
Though blessed with good crops we can’t
sell them for half what they are worth.
During all the years I bave lived here 1
never knew things so low. Corn is 15
cents per bushel, oats 10 cents, wheat
55 cents, potatoes 22 cents, fat cows and
heifers 1} cents per pound on the hoof,
Fifty bushels of corn
for a plain overcoat. To sell 25 acres of
corn, or 1,000 busheles, and haul it ten
miles for $150, is a hard way to make
If we produce 450,000,000 bushels of
wheat, and can consume but 235,000,000,
the remaining 125,000,000 must find
some other market, or eventually rot
here; and the price wheat sells for in
that market limits the market price of
the wauch larger portion that we use
The present tariff of 20 cents on w heat
does not affect that price, and were it
twice 20 cents, or were it $20, still
would not raise it one cent a bushel.
You ask “what is your remedy ?”’
I say, knock off the tariff for surplus.
Give us a tariff which is not framed
and calculated to pay a premium to
other interests at the expense of the far-
mers who are the largest consumers and
the heaviest taxpayers; but which is
limited to the needs of an honest and
economical government, and which is as
much as possible levied on the luxuries
and as little as possible on the necessaries
of life.
This is all the Protection that we far-
mers need, and all it seems to be possible
for you gentlemen to give us.
J — ,
The Era of Profligacy.
Col. McClure in Friday’s Times draws
the following startling picture of the
profligate tendency of the present ad-
ministration of the government:
In 1828 the administration of John
Quincy Adams was arraigned in every
State in the Union because of its
prefligacy, when the total expenditures
of the government, including interest on
public debt, reached the then appalling
sum of-$16,000,000 in time of peace. In
1861, the first year of Lincoln’sadminis-
tration, the total revenues of the govern-
ment, exclusive of proceeds of loans,
were $41,476,299,and the total expendi-
tures,including interest on public debt,
were $66,650,241. The civil war increased
that amount $400,000,000 the succeed-
ing year, but the entire average ex-
penditures of the government on the
peace basis for the decade prior to the
rebellion, did not exceed $65,000,000.
The revenues for the current year are
now estimated at from $400,000,000 to
$450,000,000, and the only extraordinary
ex; enditure we have is for pensions. The
estimates of certain expenditures given
to the House by Mr. Peters, one of the
prominent Republican members of the
Committee on Appropriations, amount
to 442,000,000, which do not embrace
the prison pension bill, estimated at $11,-
500,000; the pension arrears bill, esti-
mated at $471,000,000 the first year; the
service or the dependent pension bills,
estimated at over $100,000,000; the
river and harbor bill for which over
$30,000,000 are demanded, or the fortifi-
cation bill, lately reported in the Senate
for $126,000,000, of which $50,000,000
would likely be expended the first y2ar.
Of course, the passage of all these bills
is an utter impossibility, as they would
bankrupt the treasury and leave a deficit
of some $700,000,000 ; but every one of
these measuresis earnestly and hopefully
pressed upon Congress and it will be re-
markable if most of them shall not be
passed with more or less reduced appro-
priations. If so, a bankrupt treasury
is inevitable. Indeed, the passage of
either the arrears, the scervice or the de-
pendent pension bill would create a
treasury deficit for the next fiscal year,
and who can hope that the country will
escape with the passage of only one of
the three pension bills named ?
~The first tangible evidence of the era
of profligacy upon which we have just
entered is presented in the usual Urgent
Deficiency bill, that appropriates $21,-
000,000 to square up the pension de-
ficiency, although the last Congress
appropriated every. dollar. asked for by
the Pension Department. This pension
deficiency appropriation brings our pres-
ent pensions up to $111,000,000 annually,
or nearly double the entire expenditures
of the government before the war; and
when either the service, the dependent
or thearrears pension billshall be passed,
a large tressury deficit will be createcs
while the passage of all of them, as is
quite possible, would make the aggregate
cost of pensions next year equal to the
entire sum expended for ths war in
Congressman Peters did not call the
halt upon his Republican brethren any
too soon, but will his wise admonitions
be heeded ? Doubtles: the colossal de-
mands of profligates will force sober
thought and some restraintin appropria-
tions; but the era of profligacy is up-
oa us. and a bankrupt treasury séems
to be inevitable regardless of the earnest
efforts which will be made to save both
the treasury and the party.
Good-By Sarplus.
The New York World says all plans
for reducing the surplus, even by in-
creasing customs taxes to diminish im-
portations, have come to a standstill be-
fore the impeding fact that all the
revenues wil! be needed to meet the
cost of the various schemes to which the
Republican party is committed.
For ten years past the government
i has eollected annually an average of
over $100,000,000 in excess of its or-
dinary and necessary expenses. The
bond purchases in which a large part
of this sum has been absorbed mus*
coon cease for lack of availablesecurities.
In the natural order of things and in any
other government in the world this ex-
cessive revenue would be stopped by a
reduciion of taxes. But this does not
suit the purpose of the protected interests
which have yielded “fat” under press-
ure to the Rapublican campaign ma-
chine. They have paid for a continua-
tion of their bounties and insist upon a
fulfillment of the bargain. [n this pur-
pose they find willing co-operation
among the members who are lavish in
spending other people’s money for their
own personal or political benefit.
Tanner was right. The Surplus
Must Go. Mr. McKinley's committee
will not have even the poor satisfaction
of abolishing the tobacco tax and giving
the eaters of the weed “a free chaw.”
Tke revenues will be needed. The Re-
publican policy is ‘the war taxes for-
_of right and moraiity blunted by wit-
A Protest.
The Sheriff, the County Commissioners
and the Court Censured.
From the Wage-Earner's Journal
Dating from the time Seeley Hop-
kins was taken to jail until his body |
was handed over to the charge of his
relatives, there has hardly been an act
of the Sheriff, except the mere matter
of his safe-keeping of the prisoner, |
that is not entitled to receive the se- |
verest condemnation of preachers, of |
morgalists—in fact of all who bave the
welfare ot the rising generation at
heart. In the face of the conduct of the
official named, dare any man seriously
ask the question “Why Crime is on the
Increase ?”’ and not write himself down
either an ass or a fool ? We think not.
In the interest of morality, let us briefly
review these acts: From the time Hop-
kins was taken to jail until the attempt
of Sheriff Cook to have his body lie in
state, in jail, after the execution, he
was made the lion of the day—the hero
of the hour. Hundreds were permitted
to visit him out of mere idle and mor-
bid curiosity ; every ribald werd, every
blasphemous expression was in some
way or another furnished the public,
through the press, and the name of the
murderer was kept in the minds and on
the tongue of almost every one in the
county. Until the very eve ot the exe-
cution, Hopkins, if printed reports are
true, was allowed to see the people in
such numbers that these meetings as-
sumed the character of regular recep-
tions, these receptions being permitted
by the sheriff, sanctioned by the Court,
and aided by the county commissioners
—wesay sanctioned by the Court and
aided by the Commissioners, because it
was in the power of the Court, as well
as in the power of the commissioners, to
have put an end to the unseemly pro-
ceedings. Sentimental young women
and effeminate young men—with others
crowded the jail at times, with only harm
to themselves and positive injury to the
prisoner. It is even alleged that women
of questionable character were permitted
to visit his cell, and ths almost dying
words of the prisoner—his thoughts di-
verted from spiritual matters—was a
half apologetic statement clearing the
sherifi’s and his own character from a
charge that he (Hopkins) had had crim-
inal intercourse with two certain women
in Bellefonte —naming them on the
scaffold—who had visited him in his
cell. Ttis further published that the
sheriff himself ay to pay for the pic-
tures taken of Hopkins, and only a few
moments before the execution the sher-
iff sent out for a button-hole bouquet
which had been prepared by one of the
prisioner’s female admirers or sympa-
thizers, the bouquet being carefully
looked after by the Sheriff. No wonder
a bungling execution should follow
such reprehensible conduct as all this.
The surprise is that the horrible scene
was not made even more horrible.
Then, after the execution, another
show must be made, and men and wom-
en—and even young men, maidens and
children—were permitted to view the
remains of the murderer,—as they rest-
ed in the casket the prisoner himself
had been permitted to see and had pro-
nounced satisfactory. What for, let us
ask the sheriff, the Court ard the Com-
missioners ? To have the sensibilities of
the youth of the county in the direction
nessing the mawkish display of affec-
tion and sentimentality as it was mani-
fested by their elders ? And even An.
drews—a much more atrocious. villain
than the dead Hopkins—must also be
brought out of his cell to witness the
cold and lifeless form of his late com-
rade in imprisonment, and the scene
which followed graphically pictured in
the newspapers. Out upon such con-
duet. :
But the end is not yet. Not satis-
fied with the harm already done by
making a hero of Hopkins, it is stated
that it was the Sheriif’s desire to have
the body lie in state for sowe time in
the jail, and this was only prevented by
the interposition of a gentleman who
seems to have some regard for the
feelings of a community supposed to
have some ideas as to the propriety of
some things and the impropriety of
Yet notwithstanding this conduct on
the part of the sheriff, even he is made
a newpaper hero by the press repre-
sentatives present at the execution.
They say he was nervy, full of sand,
showed a wonderful degree of nerve,
etc., etc., when if these newspapers
had told the truth they would have
said just the opposite, and shown that
just when the sheriff ought to have
rad his wits about him—when Hopkins
body went through to the ground—
that official stood white and powerless
to move hand or foot, and that it was
a deputy, secured at the eleventh hours
who, realizing the situation, saved the
spectators from being witnesses to a
scene perbaps never before enacted at
a legal hanging. We admit it was a
wrying time; a time when stronger
men than Cook would have weakened,
bat why nog tell she truth? It is no
particular credit to any man to be able
to say of him that without the least
emotion he sent the immortal spirit
of a fellow being into the presence of
the Great God and Ruler of the Uni-
verse. Our respect would be greater
for the man who .would manifest a
proper degree of emotion in such a
trying time than it would be for the
man who would exhibit no more feeling
than a Digger Indian as he sends his
tomahawk crashing through the brain of
his victim! But why not tell the truth ?
And why say Cook was not to blame for
the breaking of the rope? If he experi-
mented with it before the execution ;—
if he made a sort of show of the horri-
ble instrument of death previous to the
execution, and to the extent that the
rope was weakened ; if the rope absolute-
ly broke the day before under a test of
: Bellefonte
Court, the commissioners, and the sher-
190 pounds, how can all blame be taken
from the sherifi’ for the bungling which |
followed ?
In the name of decency, of morality |
ard of humanity, we protest against a
repeating of this programme in the |
case of Andrews, Who has already sent |
a lving confession to the public,— |
which has been printed and illustrated
—and the reading of which will be
poison to the hundreds of boys and’
girls into whose hands it will fall, one
result of which bas followed quick,
reference being had to the stabbing
afiray between two pupils in the
academy. And if the
iff cannot be made to see tue impro-
priety of such conduct we have here
detailed, Christian ministers should
‘make it the theme of a pulpit discourse,
and good and moral people in all parts
of the county should assemble togeth-
er and formally express their denun-
ciation of such conduct. There is lit-
tle cant about us, but we submit that
“it is but mockery for teachers and
i preachers to attempt to teach prin-
ciples of morality, sobriety, or any
other Christian virtue, when at the
same time they permit to pass un-
rebuked a course of conduct so de-
moralizing, debasing and degrading
as has been permitted in the case of
Hopkins and now threatens to be re-
peated in tke case of Andrews.
Much might be said in derogation
of the position taken by those who so
emphatically argue that “all was well”
with Hopkins, that he died the death of
the righteous, and that his “soul is now
C Perbaps so, but if so, it is a
mighty discouraging fact to the hun-
dreds and thousands of men and women
who through much trial and tribula-
tion, and after the making of many sac-
rifices, are working their way heaven-
ward. One thought more: If legal
executions are to continue, let the
French method of strictly private exe-
cutions be adopted, and when the mur-
derer has been sentenced, let him forev-
er be lost to the world. Then, perhaps,
some good from capital punishment
would follow, but as it is, with heroes
made of murderers, how can there be
anything else than harm done ?
Proper Road Laws.
A Bill to Suit All Parts of the State
Difficult to Frame.
John A. Gundy, of Lewisburg, Pa.,
as Chairman of the State Board of Agri-
culture’s Committee on Roads, gives his
idea of how to obtain better highways
in the State, as follows: ¢“A general
road law for Pennsylvania suited to the
varied conditions of the several sections
of the State, will be difficult to frame.
But such a law is needed, and should
designate the kind of road to be con-
structed, which should be suited to the
kind and amount of traffic on the road.
Many roads are so little used that to
macadamize them would be reckless ex-
travagance. ;
“A County Supervisor should be ap-
pointed who should be competent, and
should authorize the kind of road to be
-constructed. . A township supervisor
should be elected who should be made
primarily and individually liable for
damages resulting from his negligence,
and should give bonds for faithful per-
| formance of his duty. The road taxes
should be made payable in money in
all cases. But no law will be enforced
unless the people are in sympathy with
it. They can only be brought in sym-
pathy with a new road law that would
make radical changes in the making of
roads and collecting of taxes, by educa-
tion, by showing them by actual de-
monstration thatit will be advantageous
and economical for them to support such
changes. This can best be done by the
construction of short stretches of ma-
cadam roads on the most important
highways in each township, selecting the
worst portions of such roads for such
improvements. Seeing such roads and
using them in comparison with poorly
made mud roads will be the most potent
educator that can be had.
“This is well shown in the Cassait
road in Montgomery county, asalso ina
short stretch of about eighty roads of
macadam made in one of the townships
of Union county some fifteen years ago.
The portion macadamized was about the
worst section of a four-mile road leading
out of Lewisburg. The stones were at
the side of the road, and were broken
and the road bed covered wide enough
for two tracks, depth of stone unknown,
at a cost, I am told, of only four dollars
per lineal rod, or $1,280 per mile. The
supervisor who constructed the road was
voted out of office the following spring,
as might have been supposed. But te-
day, fifteen years after, with not one
dollar spent on this section since, this
road is considered the most economically
constructed in the whole towship, and
the supervisor now receives the credit
due him at the time. Roads on which
such permanent improvements are to be
made should be properly located, and
changes contemplated should be made
before the work is begun.
“But is the macadam system to be
the road in the twentieth century? I
think not. The Appian Way, running
from Rome to Capua, has been in use
for 2200 years, and the macadam, a
cheaper form, has been in use for 100
years. Surely the genius of the twen-
tieth century will devise a better plan.
1t this improved road be a steel rail rest-
ing on a steel tie, like the street railways
of our cities, or whatever form js likely
to be adopted, all work done should be
such as will be suited to the new roads,
and probably nothing more nearly fills
this requirement than the macadam sys-
tem. But whatever is done, let us go as
fast as the education of the people will
warrant. If they are educated to de-
mand good roads, they will come; if
not, it will be difficult to get them un-
der any law.
Sur Kxew Him BETTER.—Among
the converts at the present revival jin
Richmond is a man whose wife left him
recently on account of alleged cruel
treatment. Sorrowful and repentant, as
the story goes, he called on the partner
of his bosom, not long since, to promise
better fashions and ask her forgiveness.
The aggrieved wife listened to his story,
but concluded that she could not over-
look his past offences.
«But the Lord bas forgiven me,”
urged the saved sinner, “and , why can’t
youl" .
The woman shook her head emphatic-
ally as she replied : #If the Lord knew
one-sixteenth part of your deviltry He'd
never forgive you ‘in this world or the