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STATEMENT OF HON. CHARLES FINLEY, A REPRESENTATIVE IN

CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF KENTUCKY

Mr. FINLEY. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, it always encourages a speaker when his audience expresses a desire to hear him.

I have here, Mr. Chairman, some petitions and letters, resolutions, passed by different civic bodies of the cities and towns of my district. wonder if I may file them at once or at the close of the hearing?

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. You may file them at the close of the hearing.

Mr. FINLEY, Mr. Chairman, I have the honor to represent the eleventh district of Kentucky, 13 of whose 15 counties will be embraced in this proposed new southern district in Kentucky.

Mr. MONTAGUE. How many counties will be in the proposed district?

Mr. FINLEY. Thirty-six, which will leave 41 in one of the other districts and 43 in the other.

I believe it was Henry Watterson many years ago who in a facetious way divided Kentucky into the mountains, the bluegrass, the beargrass, the pennyroyal, and the purchase.

The mountains of Kentucky, like the mountans of Virginia and North Carolina and Tennessee, lie in the Appalachian system of mountains. The bluegrass occupies what might be called the central plateau of the State, sloping toward the Ohio River. The beargrass is that region surrounding the city of Louisville, which, by its size, is entitled to be ranked with the other divisions of the State. The pennyroyal is that western section of the State, west of what is known as bluegrass, and the Jackson's purchase is that section of the State lying between the Tennessee River and the Mississippi. That was intended to be humorous in a way, I take it, but it expressed the truth, and that truth is the fact that these different sections of Kentucky have different interests. Not all of them are interested in the same things.

The mountains of Kentucky and a part of the western section are interested in mining. This section of the State up in the eastern part of it has been a lumbering and a mining region. Our brethren in the central part of the State are interested in farming and fine-stock raising

I take it if you would go down into the central part of the State and talk to a man about snaking logs he would not know what you were talking about. But we in the eastern part of the State know, because we snake logs down off the mountainside.

Come up in my section and talk to my people about Man o' War. They probably would not understand who you meant. Or, if you talk to them about the benefit and the importance of a pedigree for stock they probably would not realize what was intended. So with the balance of the State. The different occupations and the different sections of Kentucky have given a different colloquial language, so to speak, to each of them, and with that and the different occupations of necessity come different standards, different notions, different ideals, different habits.

That is one of the reasons why we think we are entitled to a district in eastern Kentucky in order that the people in that region

who speak the same language, understand the same things, are largely in the same occupations, may be grouped together.

Not that we have aught against our friends in other parts of the State, except this fact: Kentucky has a number of State institutions, like State hospitals, penitentiaries, schools, and things of that kindquite a bunch of them. There is not a single one of them located within 75 miles of my district-not one. Ours is a neglected section of the State, and if my memory serves me, there will be only one, and that a normal school, in the confines of the proposed new district.

Here is a region that has been neglected. Here is a region that feels that neglect, and when we ask for a district from that section, for a judge, we are asking for what we think will help do away among our people with that sense of having been discriminated against.

Upon what theory the gentleman asks for a judge to be appointed from somewhere else outside of that district, I don't understand.

Now, Mr. Chairman, I can not disabuse my mind of the thought that opposition to this bill comes from three sources, sentimentalism, selfishness, and, in a way, factionalism. I can sympathize in a way with a gentleman, and a very able gentleman, who, having been the judge of this district for 28 or 29 years and having passed the age of retirement long since I can sympathize with his desire to die as the judge of that district. But it is purely sentimental.

A gentleman in my county had inherited an ancestral farm, a good farm. Under changing conditions the time came when he needed money to send his children to school. The farm was very much more than he could cultivate, more than he needed. Really, as a matter of fact, he was rather poor. He was besought to sell a part of that land and get the money to educate his children, but he said, “No, this was handed to me in its present condition from my grandfather, and to my father, and I am going to hand it down to my children intact."

That may have something to say for it, but the fact remains that it was hard on the children who did not get an education. Sentiment is a fine thing; not a word of criticism about it, but when sentiment stands in the way of real progress it has not a leg to stand on.

We submit that while the honored gentleman-and we honor him-presents his objections to this bill, those objections are purely sentimental. For him to live the last of his days and die as the judge of the eastern district of Kentucky with about 41 or 43 counties ought to satisfy his ambition. We children down in the southeastern part of the State need an education.

Mr. Chairman, I do not want to be tiresome or lengthy, but you know how insidious the appeal of selfishness is.

Thou shalt not covet is one of the commandments. Yet, I have seen a statement from a prominent Catholic priest who said that he had taken confessions from thousands of men and women and among them all, while he had received confessions of all crimes in the decalogue, of all crimes against the moral law and the statutes, only one man among them all had confessed to the sin of covetousness. So insidious, so treacherous, so stealthy is the approach of this upon us and upon our emotions and feelings that we do not know we have

got it.

Many men believe that they are being actuated by pure principle, while down deep in their hearts, and without being conscious of it themselves, they are moving, they are being motivated, by selfishmass.

It is awfully easy to persuade ourselves that our motives are pure. I believe that one of the elements opposed to this, that prompts the opposition to this bill is the selfishness of those who do not want litigants and witnesses and lawyers to go to some other town than their own.

So far as factionalism is concerned, we are just like any other State. We have got a jealousy down there between sections of the Republican Party just as in Democratic States they have between sections of the Democratic Party, as to who shall be appointed marshal, and who shall be appointed judge, and the various officials in this new district--all that has its weight and its effect.

I submit to you, Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of this committee, that those considerations ought not to weigh against our need.

The author of the bill, my distinguished colleague, Mrs. Langley, has called your attention to the fact that 3,737 criminal cases were handled in that district during the year 1929. That is not saying anything about the civil cases. Assume for the sake of the argument and admit that the docket is clear, that the judge is up with his cases. How long can be continue to do that? And in the nature of things can the civil cases and the criminal cases be given that judicious and judicial treatment that they ought to have?

Our sister State of West Virginia has 24,000 square miles of territory and two judges. This district has 20,000 square miles--this eastern district of Kentucky--and handles more business than the whole State of West Virginia. I submit that if the State of West Virginia requires two judges to properly handle their business, then this section of Kentucky, which does nore business, needs two districts.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. Are you familiar with the methods of the handling of these cases in the court there?

Mr. FINLEY. I am not a lawyer, Mr. Chairman. I have, of course, been present at some of these courts as a litigant.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. I will not inquire of you then. Proceed with your statement.

Mr. Finley. I am not an attorney and I could not speak with authority as an attorney:

Mr. Chairman, one of the reasons why we ask this measure, this bill, is because of the difficulties under which we live.

Not knowing that my colleague, Mrs. Langley, had prepared a map, I had prepared one of my own which I will file with the committee.

Many, many years ago the State of Kentucky sold the lands belonging to the State up in the eastern part of it for the purpose of building turnpike roads and locking and damming streams. I want to say that I am heartily in favor of the building of roads and the locking and damming of streams.

However, the proceeds of those sales were not used, or any part of them, in eastern Kentucky. On the contrary, they were used in central and western Kentucky.

I had the honor to be on the sinking fund commission of the State of Kentucky as secretary of state from 1896 to 1900, and know that the State owned stock, if not altogether, in a number of those roads. About that time a toll-gate war broke out. The citizens down in that region reached the conclusion that it did not befit men of their

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dignity, people of their dignity, to pay tolls, so they went and tore down the tollgates and burned down the tollhouses, when we would have been glad to have that at that time. Not a foot of pike road in our entire district. We would have thanked God for any kind of pike road and paid any kind of toll over it.

We have not had any roads until recently. That is one of our difficulties. That has hindered our development. It has hindered

It hinders any country, and it always will.
I have here a quotation that I would like to read from a Kentucky
paper that reached me this morning. It is a dispatch from Campton,
Wolfe County, which would be in this proposed new district:

Fire of unknown origin discovered at 6.30 o'clock this morning destroyed practically every business house in this little town by 11 o'clock to-day. Loss is estimated at between forty and forty-five thousand dollars.

Here is the meat of the coconut.

Impossible road conditions rendered it impossible for outside help to reach here. A call for the Winchester fire department 40 miles away was sent, but after an attempt to negotiate the road leading from that city the attempt was abandoned.

There is a commentary, Mr. Chairman, on the condition of some of those counties in that section of the State.

Mr. MONTAGUE. May I ask a question, if it will not interrupt your statement?

I am very much interested in your statement. How will the establishment of a new court remedy the condition of your roads?

Mr. FINLEY. It will not, but it will bring the points where the litigants and those who have business in the courts have to go closer and they will be able to reach them more easily.

Mr. SWANSON. While you are on that line, do you have at hand how many new places of holding court will be established by this bill?

Mr. Finley. Yes. This map will show that. We propose to establish five new places for holding court under this bill.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. It might be well right now to point out to us on that map where those places are.

Mr. FINLEY. This indicates that and I will be glad to file this map with the committee now. The blue circles sindicating on map) indicate where courts are now being held.

Mr. MONTAGUE. You do not propose to change that at all?

Mr. FINLEY. No, sir. The red circles indicate where new courts will be established.

Mr. MONTAGUE. Those are the places that are specified in the bill?

Mr. FINLEY. I believe so; yes, sir. We propose to eatsblish five different places.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. There would be eight in this new district.
Mr. FINLEY. Eight; yes.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. Generally speaking, the roads are not good in this section?

Mr. FINLEY. No.

For instance, take a county down in here [indicating on map]Cumberland County. Cumberland County has not a foot of railroad or turnpike road in it-not one.

Take Clinton County. That is not reached by a railroad at all.
Mr. MONTAGUE. Is that in the district?

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Mr. FINLEY. That will be in the district. It is not reached by a railroad at all; there are Clinton and Wayne and Pulaski Counties. These two counties-it is 40 miles, I believe, from there to here [indicating on map) and further than over here to the railroad.

Then they have got to go to Lexington by railroad or by bus. The bill proposes to establish a court at Somerset, a county of about 34,000 or 35,000 population.

These people from Clinton and Wayne and this county here [indicating on map) will find it more convenient to come here (indicating] than to come up here to Lexington.

There are generally a dozen counties up in this district that have not any railroad at all and no bus lines, no trolley lines, no communication except mud roads and at this time of the year—well, what I just read from that newspaper is an indication of the condition up there.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. Your point then is that the courts should be brought close to these people so as to avoid long distances to travel.. Is that the point you are making?

Mr. FINLEY. I make that point and suggest, sir, that it will save the State from paying as much traveling expenses for witnesses and it will be a great convenience to the people in the section and will expedite the business of the courts.

Mr. SWANSON. Are they not now bringing new paved roads into that section?

Mr. FINLEY. They are trying to, but-Mrs. Langley, how much paved road have you in your district?

Mrs. LANGLEY. I can not tell you exactly, but the mileage is certainly not more than 20 or 30 miles of hard-surfaced roads. The primary system has just been started in five of the counties. The first grading has been done, but it will be at least 5 years before the primary system is completed and 10 or 15 years before other roads, leading into the primary system are built.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. All of this is mountainous country?
Mrs. LANGLEY. All in the high hills of the Cumberlands; yes.

Mr. CHRISTOPHERSON. And the business of building roads is slow and expensive?

Mr. FINLEY. Very slow and very expensive.
Mr. STOBBs. These roads are being built by the State?
Mrs. LANGLEY. By the State, with Federal aid.

Mr. STOBBS. I suppose the reason why the State has been slow to go into this eastern part is because of the expense involved in the building of these roads?

Mrs. LANGLEY. Yes. The expense is 4 or 5 per cent greater than in the central part.

Mr. STOBBs. And it is very sparsely populated?
Mrs. LANGLEY. Yes.

Mr. Srobbs. Do I understand your bill simply provides for ore judge, one clerk, and one United States marshal?

Mrs. LANGLEY. Yes; in the new district.
Mr. STOBBS. The clerk would travel around with the court?
Mr. MONTAGUE. Do you not have a clerk for each court?
Mrs. LANGLEY. No.
Mr. MONTAGUE. The clerk would go from court to court,?
Mrs. LANGLEY. Yes.

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