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Michigan Central Railroad

Michigan Central Railroad image
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Tho annual meeting oí tho stoeknolüers of tlie Michigan Oeutral Railroad was held at Boston, January 29th.- The following is the REI-OM OF rKESIDENT JOY : To tho Stockholders of the Michigun Central Iluilroad Company : ïhose who havo read tho last two annual reports havo beon mado fully aware of tho extensivo improvoments which had bocomo necossary, in consequence of the inereased and incroasing volume of business passing over the road. They aro also acquainted with the reduetion of rates caused witfain tho last six or sevon years beforo 1872, by the multiplicaron of compoting lines ot' roads, to Iess than one-half tho amount, upon au average, they were ia 1805, rendering it necessary to transport threo or four or oven five times the tonnage of the last named year, to rnake the net earnings much larger than thoso of that year. IMl'HO VEMEN I'S, involving doublé tracks, steel rails, enlarged grounds at terminal stations, additional aud greatly enlarged equipment of both power and cars, and consequently new and adequate shops for their repairs. This work has boen going on during the whole season, and is now nearly finished. The track, so far as had boen contemplated, has been completed, and the whole line is in firstclass order. All the old line is of steel except sixty-five miles. The doublo track is all steel. The machine shops and the accompanying buildings at Jackson, are finished, and it is believed are as perfectly adapted to thoir work as they possibly can be. THE NEW CAE SHOl'S. There reinains to be expended upon the car shops at the junction near Detroit, during the next year, probably froni $20,000 to $25,000, to complete the roof of one building and repair damago to another caused by a terrible gale in December. The work has been largo, and has cost much beyond aay estimate made, but it is believed has been well and thoroughly done. The road is now in a condition to do its enlarged business with ease and.economy, and will be adequate to the demwnds upon it for inany years to come. LOW KATES OF FKEIGHT. Owing to several causes, the business of the last six months has not been such as uiight reasonably have been oxpected. Froin difficulties arising between the trunk road, so called, from New York, west, all west-bound business from that city had been done at very low rates, and for a large portion of the time at considerably less than half the regular tariff rates. This has caused a large falling off in both the gross and net receipts from that business. The rates upon all west-bound freights are fixed entirely by these trunk lines, and are beyond the control of this company. HOW THE PANIC AFFECTED BUSINESS. The business east-bound, in the month of August and early part of September, xromised to be very large, and it was so during the first half of the latter month. During the second week the increase of business over the corresponding week of the year before was nearly $40,000. At that time the panic occurred, and the whole increase was lost the next week. The business of the country and the road for the rest of that month, and October and November, did not recover from the paralysis caused by these financial disturbances. It has not fully recovered from them even now, though December and January have shown inuch moro favorable results. INCBEASE OF BUSINESS. The increase in the gross business of the road, for the six months ending with November, notwithstanding these difficulties", has been $152,418 55. - This, in other circumstances, would be but a small increase ; but, the causes being considered, is perhaps all that could be expected. Of this increase, 6,897 73 has been for passengers, and 8145,520 82 has been for freight and miscellaneous earnings. NOT AS GOOD AS IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN. During the same time the local freight earnings and the earnings on west-bound through freight have fallen of $131,494 42. The increase, therefore, is on through eastern business, nnd during that period was $283,912 97. With the customary rates on the usual west-bound business, and ordinary local trafile, the increase should have been nearly half a million. A B.EVIVAL OF BUSINESS. The month of December and the first three weeks in January, on the main line, showed a reviving business. During that seven weeks the increase was $212,889 98 ; of this, $17,086 97 was from passengers, and $95,803 01 from freight. The gross increase of business for the last year, from January lstto December 31st, was $526,29103. The number of tons of freight for the last six months, ending November HOth, moved over the road, was 905,281, being an increase over the corresponding period of the year before of 43,238 tons. LUM13EK TEAITIC D1MINISHED. There bas been great depression in the lumber trade during the whole year and almost total suspension during the months of September, Oetober and November, whicb still continúes. That business has not yet feit the stimulus of roviving confidence, and the business of the branches has not increased so rapidly as the main line. THE BBANCBC BOADS. It will be seen by the ïreasurer's statement that the balance against the branch roads, including the Joliet, for tho six months, is $174,131 93, which has boen dcducted from the net earnings of the road, in stating the amount to credit of incoine account. Perhaps it should be stated again that these roads wero undertaken by the country through which they run, and are to a large extent of recent construction, and that this company has acquired the control of them as defensivo measures as well as for the purpose of making them tributary to the main line. The amount of business received from them all during the six months ending with November upon the main line was $480,738 79. That from the" Joliet branch, and which passes over the whole main line, was $285,966 61. - From the other branches there were re coived $195,672 18. A BETTEB PEOSPECT. The northem hundred miles of the Jackson, Lansing & Saginaw Railroac was only openod during the past year lts business, therefore, is new, and it is probable that within a short period i will develop into a valuable traffic and that of itself, with its land gran of 600,000 acres, more than a third o which belongs to this company, the road will becomo profitable. A DESIEABLE PEOJECT. Sliüuld tho contemplated road IVoni ilackinaw to Marquetto bo built, the Fackson, Lansing & Bagínaw road wül ecome a thoroughfare for business and travel, lianlly second to anj in tho Vest. THE I51PR0VEMKNTS OPON THE MiEAT WKSTKBIT EAILWAT, whioh conneets the Michigau Central with tho New York Central and the 3rie, and is the natural ally oí' this ompany from its position and location, tave been fully as extensivo as those upon tho Michigan Central. Its new road from Glencoe conneets our line vith all roads terminating at Buffalo, md has also a connection with its own air line near tho Bridge, and makos tho shortest route botween Detroit and Susjension Bridge It is thereforo both a loublo track and a new road to Buffao. lts doublé track botweon Glencoe and Detroit is also nearly coinpleted. Xa whole lino is therefore substantially aid with a doublé track. IN FIRST-CLASS ORDEE. Its oquipnient and power havo been enlarged to meet tho necessities of tho case, and all its appointments made, it s believed, adequate to the demands upon it. Its whole track in both lines s of steel, and both that road and that of this company are now, in every respect, equal to the best in the country. Llie trains on both, of freight and passongers, are again able to run with regularity and punctuality. The business of that road has of courso sufferod by reason of tho panic equally with that of the Michigan Central. WELL SITUATED FOR BUSINESS. ïhough the local business of this company has beon, as stated, unusualy sniall, and west-bound business has )een light, there has never boen passing over the lines of each company so heavy a tonnago as at the present time, and at no past period in the history of the roads would it havo been possible to havo handled such an amount of freight as now passes over thoni with ease. The Board thereforo confidently expects that with prosperity again fully restored to tho country and its business re-established. THE GREAT ADVANTAGES OF THE LINES of the Michigan Central and Great Western Roads for travel and business, and the excellent condition of both roads in all respects, will enable them to command their full share of all the business, both passenger and froight, passing between the East and tho West. Per order of the directors.