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Labor Abroad

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John Wilson, United Btates Consul at Brussels, in a dispatch to the Department of State, at Washington, gives some hints as to the methods of introdueing American manufactures into Europe. He starts out with tlie assertion that prejudice is agreater obstacle than tariffs or unregulated trade. It is not enough to send abroad circulara and price-lists. Sample depots, with competent agents to make kuown the character, uses and qualities of our inventions are what is needed. Patience and perseverance on the part of these agents are also required in dealing with the people of Europe. With these, success is Bure. Innovations, and especially American innovations, are generally repugnant to Europeans, but this prejudice has already yielded in a marked degree. There is now no difficulty with aiticles like flour, bacon, lard, petroleum and breadstuffs. Petroleum met with universal opposition at first, but is now introduced into the homes of the better classes as weli as among the poor. Indian corn has yet to overeóme a prejudice like that which, a few years ago, assailed petroleum. The peasant of Belgium not only feeds himself, but his norse, on coarse, black, rye bread. Indian corn. substantially unknown to ldm, would be cheaper and more nutritious. He needs tobe taught this. The importation of this grain has largely increased in Belgium. All this applies with nearly equal force to our canned fruits, vegetables and meats. These are constantly overcoming hostility and prejudice, and their use is increasing in many places. Competent agents have securcd these ends. Similar education is needed to introduce largely. our perfected stoves, ranges, carriages, etc. The CoheuI, therefore, urgently recommends that American manufacturers and producers combine and establish agencies for the purpose of educating Europeans up to the use of our machines and products. The United States Consul at Copenhagen, Mr. Henry B. Kyder, sends to the Department of State a report of affairs in Denmark. As in other countries, a general stagnation prevails. Of the currency of Denmark he says: "The circulation amonnts to 64,000,000 crowns in paper money. The gold in the bank amounts to aböut 35,000,000. The National Bank of Copenhagen is the only bank in the kingdom allowed to issue paper money. The notes of the bank are redeemable in gold coin, which is the legal tender, silver being used as a fractional currency, and a legal tender only to the amount of 30 crowns. The circulation of gold may be stated at 30,000,000; of silver at 16,000,000; and of copper at 500,000. The coins of Denmark, Sweden and Norway are legal tender in each country. Wages are from 10 to 15 per cent, leas than in 1872, while the cost of living is a trifle higher. Laborera o.arn f rom 8 to 10 crowns per month; mechamos from 2 to 3 crowns a day. The cost of living to a laborer is from 1 to 2 crowns a day. There isa large surplus of labor and noemploymentforit." Mr. Henry Noble, United States consular agent at Turin, Italy, in a dispatch to the Department of State, of recent date, gives sorne statistics of labor in that country, viz. : Daily wages of farm hands, nine months, 24 cents per day; three months (haryest time), 60 to 70 cents per day, without maintenance. Women are paid aboufc one-half of these rates. ïouths, from 14 to 16 years oíd, are paid írorn $20 to $24 per aimum, with board. Bailroads run by the national Government pay their engineers from $30 to $42 per month; common laborers from 50 to 60 cents per day; chief conductors, $360 to $400 per annum; station-masters, $800to $1,000. Pensions are provided to employés after a certain number oí years of faithful service, and to their widows in case of accident or death while on duty. Females who guard the crossings receive 16 cents a day; ticket-sellers, 20 cents, their hours of labor averaging four or five per day. The cost of living for laborers is about 18 cents per day. During the past ñve years both wages and the cost of living have advanced about 15 per cent. Trade is deplorably dnll. Exportation of manufactured goods has almost ceased, and matters seem to be going from bad to worse. In Italy there are six banks having the right to issue paper money without being compelled by law to have any reserve in coin. The circulation of these banks amounts to 624,000,000 of francs, including Government notes and coin. The Government notes are good for all dues, are legal tender, except for duties on imports, and are guaranteed by the banks. For the guarantee the banks receive a commission of 8 cents for each 100 francs issued. The premium on coin- mostly gold - ranges from 9 to llL per cent. The wages of all classes are paid in paper money. The Department of State has received from the United States Consul at Bremen a very full report on labor and ■wages in his district. For agricultural labor the pay varíes greatly, according to the proximity to, or remoteness from, manuf acturing centers, and ranges from 56 cents a day in the neighborhood of Bremen to 31 cents a day in the lower Bhine valley, and as low as 18 cents in parts of Silesia. At Bremen, Crefeld and Dusseldorf carpenters, coppersmiths, plumbers, machinists and onsmitbs eam f rom 51 to 75 cents daily saddlers and shoemakers from 47 to 52 cents daily; bakers and brewers, with board and lodging, from $1.42 to $2.14 weekly, and without board from 60 cents a day 'to $4. 28 a week; farm hands are paid from $107 to $215 yearly, with maintenance; railway laborera from 5G to 83 cents per day, and as high as 95 eents daily for piece-work on tunnels ; silk-weavers can earn f rom $2. 1 5 to $2.85 a week per loom. Factory women, $2.15, and children $1 a week. Business and wages are very low. In good times wages are 80 per cent. higher. The oost of the necessaries of life has increased some 50 per cent. in thirteen years, although now it is but little higher than flve years ago. A man and wife, with two or three children, can live in two or three rooms in a poor and comfortless manner lor $275 a year, and to support such an establishment all the members have to work ten or twelve hours daily. For a family of six oersons the coat is about $7 a week - an amount that few families can earn, as the depression of trade and the rcduction of time allow few to do a full week's work. although wages are nominally a trifle higher than five years ago. The state of trade is de plorable. Factories are run and sale made at a loss, except, perhaps, the sil and button industries. Ketail trade i somewhat more prosperous. Another important improvement i connection with our Western lake com merco was completed on tho Fourth of July- the Sturgecn Bay sUip cana), which, by a short cut, connects Lako Michigan with Green bay, Wis., saving t long disanoe of uavigation.


Old News
Michigan Argus