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locks by a specially adapted canal engine so as to avoid any damage to the locks by the passing ship.
A ship in passing up the canal is towed into the first lock at sea-level; the water is turned into the lock and in fifteen minutes the ship is raised 28 feet to the second lock; here the process is repeated and the ship rises to the third lock; then it is raised in this lock 28 feet to the level of the lake; it then steams into the lake, being just one and one-half hours going through the three locks. It passes on to the south locks and goes through them in one hour and a half. It then takes three hours for passage through all the six locks; this will leave from 7 to 9 hours to pass through the other parts of the canal, about 47 to 48 miles, or about 7 miles an hour. This of course is on the theory that everything works out without mishap and according to rule.
The lock walls are of concrete; the outside walls at Gatun are 50 feet thick, the center 60 feet thick. The side walls are, by plan, so reduced as to be 8 feet wide on top. The total bottom width of the twin locks is about 380 feet. The three sets of locks at Gatun make a concrete mass nearly 80 feet high, 380 feet wide and 3,000 feet long, less the lock spaces, tunnels, &c.
The canal is far from being a straight line across the isthmus; it makes many angles and yet does not coincide with the bed of the Chagres river. It is stated that the river crosses the canal many times between Gatun and where the Chagres enters the canal zone. It is evident that the canal does not entirely follow the line of the river.
The slides are more numerous than the most of us have been advised. Even where the sides are of rock, slides may happen; the Panama rock is brittle and
when dry is easily fractured, and has little more sustaining power than clay. Both sides of the "cut" are subject to slides, and science cannot determine in advance where or when they may occur. It is a natural phenomenon, and beyond the ken of science.
They are without doubt caused by some peculiar weight pressure, and the remedy should come through the removal of the load.
Note:-A late book on the canal is by Bakenhus, Knapp and Johnson, 1915. Mr. Bakenhus writes upon the engineering features of the canal. From this it appears that Gatun Spillway is cut through the central hill and has a rock bottom. On this is built the concrete dam, arc-shaped, with the convex side towards the lake. The crest is 69 feet above sea-level, on this are 14 iron gates, 19 feet high, each about 45 feet wide. The gates will hold the water in the lake to the height of 88 feet above sea-level.
The length of the canal is given from shore to shore as 41.5 miles, and from deep water in Limon Bay to deep water in Panama Bay the length is 50.4 miles. Government engineers with access to the records speak with correctness; we may rely on their statements.
The question of the construction of the two treaties, respecting the Panama Canal, were in some phases before Congress for discussion at divers times in 1912, 1913 and in 1914 up to the date of the passage of the act repealing toll exemption.
The arguments made, in favor of exemption, during 1912 and 1913 were largely collected by Joseph R. Knowland of California and printed as a public document under the title "Symposium of views protesting against a surrender of American rights" in the tolls controversy; and which comprises 134 pages. This was the fortified position, behind which, the toll-exemption advocates sought to find protection. The arguments in the "Symposium" were perhaps the popular view in our country in 1912-13.
In 1914 another vista was opened up to our vision. Legal reasoning began to assert itself and many believed that toll exemption had been inconsiderately written into the "canal law." The repeal act was in 1914 brought before Congress with a purpose to determine the very right of the matter-morally, legally, nationally and internationally.
The adverse argument in the House was wholly ineffective against the vast majority of the votes ready to be cast in favor of the repeal of the exemption law. But in the Senate the closeness of the vote gave a great impetus to the arguments for and against the repeal act. Able arguments were made in the Senate by Root, McCumber, Lodge, Cummins, Poindexter, O'Gorman,
Lewis, Borah, Works, Martine, Bristow and many others. Party politics was almost entirely neutralized and rendered inert; it lost most of its cohesive power.
A remarkable feature connected with the Senate proceedings was, that the leader on each side of the controversy came from the State of New York; that Mr. Root, a Republican, was vigorously supporting the repeal of toll exemption; and that Mr. O'Gorman, a Democrat, was energetically opposing the measure. Here is the most convincing proof that the tolls question was not a matter of partisanship and should not have been made such. It was a question deeper and more vital than that; it had reference to world matters and could not be entirely local or domestic. It was wisely decided, disregarding party expediency, and there it rests to-day, as a most correct declaration of national policy.
The speeches made by these two leaders were exhaustive, and comprehended all that was possible to be said on the respective sides of the question. They were serious, thoughtful, and no doubt founded on conviction. But as there was a controversy, out of necessity, both could not be on the winning side.
These speeches were printed by the government as Public Documents, and we print below, extracts from each.
SPEECH OF HON. JAMES A. O'GORMAN.
Mr. O'GORMAN. A bill is now pending before us to repeal the coastwise exemption, but the advocates of the bill do not seem to be in accord as to the reasons why Congress should reverse itself. Some of those who support the repeal are opposed to the exemption on economic grounds; others recognize its economic advantages but believe that the Panama Canal act violates
the Hay-Pauncefote treaty. Others approve the existing law, and while insisting that it does not contravene the provisions of the Hay-Pauncefote treaty, nevertheless favor the repeal because the Executive has requested that this action be taken.
The question is an important one and its wise solution will tax the intelligence and patriotism, perhaps the courage and independence, of every Senator. Our action on the pending measure may mark an epoch in the history of the Republic; its influence may be felt by our posterity. Whether we shall deserve their censure or gratitude will depend upon the manner in which we shall meet the responsibility which now confronts us. If we perform our duty as become Senators of the United States and vote according to our judgment and convictions, I believe that no Senator now or hereafter will have to reproach himself with having abandoned his country when her honor and security called for his defense.
The bill comes from the committee without recommendation, a motion to report it favorably having been defeated by a vote of 5 to 9.
Mr. President, I intend to consider briefly the legal, economic, and political aspects of this question. In my judgment, the British claim has neither law nor justice to sustain it. I hope to be able to establish: First, that the exemption of the coastwise vessels constitutes a wise, economic policy, and is not affected by the HayPauncefote treaty; second, that if coastwise vessels fall within the terms of the treaty, the exemption does not constitute a violation thereof; third, that the canal has been constructed on territory over which the United States exercises the power of sovereignty, while the canal contemplated by the treaty was to be built on alien