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American Against Foreign Enterprise

American Against Foreign Enterprise image
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The Count Do Lessops cauie here as the representative of fbreign Mpitalbu, with a great flourish of trunipets, ami iiupressed simple people with the plan that he was going to carry out his i'iea of' a Panama Canal without delay. 15ut the President first checked his ardor by reaffiruiing the Monroe doctrine of American control over worksofthat nature, and Capt Jamo 1!. Eads followed thi., shnwing the Congressional CVimmittpn that Ho l.n. ..,,,.' .,., was iuipractioable fram engineering diffioulties, and the enoriuous expense it would iovolve. lie then read to the comnjittee a paper in advocacy of Iih plan of a shiprailway. He denionstrated tlmt a sulistantial and durable ship railway can be built for half the cost of a canal with locks, and for one-fourth that of a canal at tide level ; that such a ship railway can be built in onethird or one-fourth of' the time needed for the construction of' a canal ; that, when built, ships of the maximum tonnage can be moved with safoty at four or five times greater speed than in a canal ; that a greater number of vessels por day can be transported by the railway than eau possibly be transponed by the canal ; that the capacity of a ship railway can be easily increased to meet the demands of commerce ; that the oost of maintenance of the roadway and rolling stock would bo rauch less than that of the canal, and that a railway can be constructed and operated in localities where it is not practicablo to contruct a cana!. lie explaincd hij plan by means of drawings which showcd a pit of 3,0üü f'ect long, in which the raiiway should be made into the harbor to the depth of thirtv feet : then showing the eradle into which the ghip ii to be fitted, and explaining how the sliip is to be kept in plaee in the eradle by means of blocks six or ten f'efct apart ; then showing the railway, consisting of twelve rails of the ordinary width. Ho ilaiined that derailnient wasitnpossibleon account of the uumber of rails and the wcight of the sliips ; that there would be no o.-cülation or strain upon the ships, even in hl avy ales. His plaB hw rweived the sanction of' E. J. Iteed, Chief Constructor of the British Nayy ; Johnlioach, HenrySteer. and other eminent American ensioeers. M. do Lesseps Raid he did nnt like the railway plan because it had not been tried ; it was Dol hit plan. Hut Capt. Badl s tuis to have the coufidenee of' the butiness men eveij where, and it is probable that our governnient wil! patronize American enterprise in tbis in8tance. 'l'lio Mt. St. Gothard tuonel, balween Swiizerland and Italy, is the longest work of' its kind in the world. The enterprise was comnienced by M. Louis Führe of Geneva in 1872. The loncth of' the tunnel is 9J milec, and bas bored in less than 7i years, at a contract price of $0,700,000. The line of the tunnel leave.- the St. Gothard carriage road to the left of Airólo, pataea northwest under the Eastelhorn, the St. Anna glacier, the village of Andennatt, the river Keuss about at the Devil's bridge, and cornos out at Gotchene at the leve! 6f that villaje and the carriage rod. M. Favro has tho mtísfaotion of havitig bored the longest tunnel in the world by overa niile in less time by five yeur than was n-quired to bore the Mount Cenis tunnel, now the second greateft work of the kind. Thii rapid acliievrniont is a triumph for the improved drilling machinory pf modern inv iition which has been employed upon the St. Onthard tunnel from the begioniog. The Mount ('mis tunnel iseight miles long, cost $18,000,000, and was 13 years in OOIMtraotWB. 'Ihe work WM coiiipleted in 1870. The Iloosac tunnel in our own country, rocently completed, is nearly five miles in length and cot $10,000,000. The St. Gothard tunnel will form the shortest line of transit between the vallew of the Ilbine and tlm Mediterrancau. '