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defeat that motion. I should so rule. Is it your pleasure that the Secretary be designated to cast the ballot for officers of the Association for the ensuing year?

The motion was carried unanimously; and the officers nominated by the committee were duly elected.

The CHAIRMAN. Mr. LOCKWOOD is not present. I do not see Mr. CUMNOCK of Lowell. Mr. NoURSE, the second Vice

President, is invited to take the chair.

Mr. NOURSE, on taking the chair, said: Gentlemen, I return you my sincere thanks for the distinguished honor you have conferred upon me in electing me the second Vice-President of this Association.

The first subject in order upon the programme is, “The Future of the Cotton Manufacture in the United States." What action will you take in regard to it?

Mr. JOHNSTON. I would suggest that Mr. ATKINSON, our retiring Vice-President, open the question, and give us some points on the matter.

Mr. ATKINSON. I do not feel prepared to discuss the subject. I have nothing additional to offer upon it. We had relied entirely upon Gov. STRAW on this subject, and are much disappointed at his not being here.

Mr. T. J. BORDEN. I move that the matter be laid on the table.

Mr. PAINE. Understanding from the communication received by the Secretary from Gov. STRAW that he may be here at a later hour, I second the motion, hoping that he may be here before the close of the meeting.

The motion to lay upon the table was carried.

The CHAIRMAN. The next matter upon the programme seems to be, "The Methods and Appliances for Preventing and Extinguishing Fires."

Mr. ATKINSON. In respect to that article, I may, perhaps, be permitted to indicate, to gentlemen present who are more apt to be cognizant of certain perhaps vexatious requirements of underwriters than to take cognizance of the profit or saving that ensues from these requirements, what saving or profit there is in this matter. Since I had the honor to be chosen to the office that I now hold, that of President of the Boston Manufacturers' Mutual Fire Insurance Company, I have looked up carefully the results of mutual insurance, and of the

fires that have occurred in cotton, woollen, and other mills, for the last twenty-seven years. The result of the investigation of the mutual system is this: There are sixteen mutual offices, some of them dating back to 1835, and coming down to the age of three or four years for the junior offices. They have returned to the assured, as near as I can ascertain, nine millions of dollars ($9,000,000) during the period of their existence. That sum represents an actual saving to the assured upon the rates that have been charged; but it appears that there must have been, as you are all aware, a very large saving of rate also, for the reason that the losses and expenses combined of the older mutual offices are less than the expenses only of conducting stock-insurance companies. The rate of insurance now charged in the mutual companies is far less than it was or could have been before they became the principal underwriters on factories; and of this rate only about one-third, or thirty-three per cent, has been absorbed by losses and expenses combined, and two-thirds has been returned to the assured by the older mutuals on the average: but, in the stock-insurance system, Commissioner Rhodes estimates that forty per cent of the fire premiums are absorbed by the expenses only. I think it is not unfair to say, that the actual saving to-day, under this mutual system, is from one to two millions of dollars a year to the manufacturing interests of New England, New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. I think it is nearer two millions Now that proves to you the profit that accrues from acting on the suggestions of the mutual companies if they advise you to do something further for the prevention of fire. But the whole system is mutual, and there is as little ground for unreasonable demands on the part of the underwriters as there is for a tacit or active refusal to take their advice when it is well given. The system must be perfected, if it is not yet perfect, by the most cordial co-operation of those who have charge of factories with those who have the direction of the offices.

than one.

The result of the study of fires, of which our Mr. Whiting has kept a memorandum for sixteen years, is this: That the unavoidable causes of fire to wit, the stones and other hard substances that strike fire in pickers, and other accidents that we know must cause fires to take - have been on the whole so adequately provided against, that in sixteen years there has

been but one single large conflagration from a fire that began in a picker building; and, in that case, had the door separating the picker from the mill been of wood covered with tin instead of iron, the destruction of the mill would have been prevented. In the whole twenty-seven years of the existence of the Boston Manufacturers' Mutual Company, there have been but two such fires. There have been, in all, during the history of our company, 360 fires, on which we have paid some indemnity. Of those, 263 have been in cotton-mills. Of those 263 fires in cotton-mills, 187 have been picker fires, that have been put out, with a total loss of only $72,000,-less than $400 each. There have been, as I have said, two other picker fires, causing together a loss of $70,000. There have been 44 small fires in cotton-mills, in main buildings, of less than a thousand dollars each. That brings you down to 29 destructive fires in cotton-mills, besides the two already named, causing a loss of $586,000 in the aggregate; that is, a little over one destructive fire a year in cotton-mills.

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Now, in respect to the history of these fires: It appears, of course, that all the picker fires took place in the daytime; and a very large proportion of the mill fires that are put out with small loss also took place in the daytime. The destructive fires are those which occur at night. In all the cotton-mills, woollen-mills, printworks, iron-works, and other premises that we insure, there have been seventy-three destructive fires: and fifty-two of those have taken place in the night, on Sunday, or in the early morning, when the mill was stopped; and twenty in the daytime, when the works were in operation; one, unknown. If we could insure good heads on the shoulders of those who are left in charge of the mills at night, and a right use of adequate apparatus at such times, the losses would be far less. Several of the destructive fires have occurred from the utter breaking down of adequate apparatus for want of head on the part of those who happened to be present at the time the fire occurred, as you may well under

stand. But the great enemies you have to dread are three. The causes of seventy per cent of all your heavy losses are three; and you cannot always distinguish between two of the causes that I shall name. Broken lanterns and spontaneous combustion one or either account for nearly one-half of all your destructive fires. Broken lanterns, spontaneous combustion, and friction account for seventy per cent of all your losses. And we hold that these three causes are, to a very large extent, removable or remediable causes of danger, without additional expense or cost to the assured. This matter of spontaneous combustion and friction brings up the whole subject of oil in use for the lubrication of machinery, and other purposes in mills. There is a vast deal of experience upon that subject, and apparently no very adequate rule yet established. It is the intention of the underwriters, including stock companies, to endeavor during the next six months to find out to what extent the introduction of the products of petroleum or mineral oils and cotton-seed oil have altered previous conditions. In some respects the change is in the direction of safety, and, in other respects, in the direction of danger. In respect to safety, the absence of the danger of what is called spontaneous combustion is very well proven in regard to the mineral oils; while the use of cotton-seed oil as an adulterant for lard, whale, and sperm oil, and other animal or vegetable oils, is an increased cause of danger, which you have to look out for, as it is a drying oil, and so counted among those which are most liable to spontaneous combustion.

I present a copy of agreement made with reference to this branch of inquiry:

It is hereby agreed, by EDWARD ATKINSON, representing sundry Insurance Companies, and JOHN M. ORDWAY, representing the Department of Industrial Chemistry of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology,

That said department shall conduct an investigation of the various oils to be found in commerce. The investigation shall have reference to,

1. The power of the oils to diminish friction under various pressures and at various rates of speed.

2. The tendency of the oils to oxidize while in use for lubrication, and their consequent deterioration in efficiency.

3. Their tendency to rapid oxidation when largely extended by absorbent, fibrous substances, and their consequent liability to induce spontaneous combus


4. Their proneness to emit combustible vapors when rubbed, or moderately heated, or kept long in partially filled reservoirs.

5. Their tendency to corrode metallic bearings.

6. Their specific heat, or relative rapidity of heating and cooling when exposed to the same heating or cooling influence.

7. The relative length of time that a pint of each will last in doing a given kind of lubricating work.

8. Their relative fluidity, or the thickness of layers retained between two surfaces subjected to a given pressure.

9. Their compatibility with each other when successively used on the same bearing.

10. Liability to separate into constituent parts by long standing or by freezing. 11. Their freedom from non-lubricating sedimentary matter.

12. Ease of removal from bearings after becoming thickened by floating dust or abraded particles of metal, or by accidental overheating.

13. Their tendency to diffuse unpleasant or unwholesome odors.

14. Ease of ignition, and rapidity of combustion when they are inflamed.

15. The probability of perfect uniformity in successive lots supplied by the manufacturer.

16. The possibility of securing an unlimited supply at moderate prices.

17. Suitableness for oiling wool before spinning and weaving.

18. Ease of removal from yarn or cloth in the operations of scourings. 19. Their suitableness for the manufacture of soaps.

20. Their effect on leather and wood.

Special attention is to be directed to the discovery of ready tests of the goodness, as well as freedom from adulteration, of the different oils, and of different samples of oils purporting to be the same. Methods are also to be sought for of determining the amount and kind of adulteration in any sophisticated sample.

It is also to be considered whether the addition of substances other than proper oils is in all cases injurious and unprofitable to the consumer.

The objective point of the investigation is fully understood to be the establishment of such methods for testing oils as can be adopted by insurance companies for the common use of their members, either on their own premises or elsewhere. The aim shall be to obtain data which may serve as a sound basis for action to secure the greatest degree of safety consistent with the economical and efficient use of machinery.

In consideration of services rendered, said Atkinson shall pay to the Department of Industrial Chemistry one hundred and twenty-five dollars ($125) for each month consumed in the investigation.

Said Ordway is also authorized to employ a suitale number of assistants at such rates and for such portions of the time as may seem proper; and the bills for their services shall be paid out of the moneys in the hands of said Atkinson.

Said Ordway shall also provide such needed peculiar apparatus as the department does not possess ; and this additional apparatus shall be paid for by said Atkinson. This apparatus, in default of any farther mutual agreement, shall remain in the custody and use of said department, under such provision for its use by said department in making such tests of specific samples of oil as the members of the mutual insurance companies, or other persons, may wish to have made from time to time on payment of such fees as may be reasonable.

The practical results of the investigation shall be the property of said

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