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Senator PEPPER. May I interrupt you right there?
Senator PEPPER. You, of course, know the details of the proposed Florida ship canal ?
Representative MANSFIELD. Exactly.
Senator PEPPER. To refresh your memory, was it not the testimony of the Army engineers that in from 5 to 6 years they could build the Florida ship canal, which had a cubic yardage that needed to be excavated of approximately 900,000,000.
Representative MANSFIELD. It was tremendous. I do not remember the figures. But they said from 5 to 6 years. General Somervell and General Markham were the engineers.
Senator PEPPER. General Markham was the Chief of Engineers.
For the Florida ship canal, the total yardage to be excavated, according to the recommendation of the Board of Engineers, was 923,000,000. According to the Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors the time necessary to construct it was 60 months, or 5
That was 923,000,000 yards, and the canal was to be 600 feet wide.
For the canal that was to be 400 feet wide, General Markham, Chief of Engineers, said 72 months would be required in building.
The one recommended by the Somervell board, that had a 250-foot width and a total yardage to be excavated of 614,000,000, would have required 72 months to build, according to the estimate of General Somervell, who is now a lieutenant general in the Army, and is Chief of Army Supplies.
This canal has a cubic yardage of about 80,000,000; yet the Chief of Engineers, General Reybold, has indicated that it would take 3 years to excavate those 80,000,000 yards.
Some little while ago, not in wartime but in peacetime, when I talked to the Board of Engineers, I said, “You could excavate 923,000,000 cubic yards in 60 months; the Chief of Engineers said you could excavate 816,000,000 cubic yards in 72 months.”
Either the previous Chief of Engineers and the Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors were far out of line after lengthy study, or else the General is being what he would naturally be expected to be-conservative in his estimate.
Representative MANSFIELD. As I understand it, they want to be entirely conservative.
Senator PEPPER. Has not that been your experience ?
Representative MANSFIELD. That has been my experience and observation in 26 years of dealing with the engineers. He is basing that, as I understand it, upon the fact that it is going to be very hard to get the money during these wartimes and very hard to get equipment priorities. He takes all that into consideration as a matter of course. It is just a question of priorities and money; that is all there is to it. There is no big job once you get the stuff to do it with. You can do it right off the bat.
Of course, we do not know what a future Congress will do. It may cut it out entirely; it may not let you have a cent. Or it may take a different view and might rush it. You do not know what it will do. The only way we can find out is to start it and see what Congress will do.
If we have to depend entirely on hauling oil and gasoline to the East, it is going up in price 9 or 10 cents additional a gallon, because the rail
haul cannot do it. It is bound to raise the price. The Government will have to subsidize the consumers. It is just as fair for the Government to do that as it is to subsidize the oil companies—and bills are now pending here in the Senate for that purpose.
Senator PEPPER. Judge Mansfield, I interrupted you when you were going to give the estimate of the Baltimore firm.
Representative MANSFIELD. That was all there was to it. The man said he would guarantee that he could do it, if he could get the equipment already in existence and the money, in 8 or 10 months.
Senator PEPPER. Was that the Arundel Corporation?
Representative MANSFIELD. Yes, sir. I am sorry I do not remember the name of the gentleman. He is a high authority, however, and I can get his name and submit it to
desire it. Senator PEPPER. Was it Mr. Ennis? Representative MANSFIELD. That is the name, I think.
I think I have told you about everything. If there are any questions, I shall be glad to answer them.
Senator PEPPER. The barge canal across Florida has for its essential purpose the connecting of the two loose ends of the intercoastal waterways.
Representative MANSFIELD. Certainly. We have spent about $200,000,000 on this so far, and that link is missing. The two sections cannot be utilized for national purposes until that is completed. They can serve local purposes to a great extent, but if they are connected, they will serve a great national purpose. Not only are we sending oil and gasoline, but we are sending from Texas, and from my district, more than 2,000,000 tons of sulfur now, and all of it being practically used for war purposes. Perhaps the largest place of consumption is up here in Delaware at du Pont's. Eighty-seven percent of the sulfur that goes out of Texas is used for war purposes. The transportation charge is about four times what it was a year ago. Of course, the Government has it all to pay. If you take 3,000,000 tons of sulfur and add about $7 or $8 a ton to the cost, you can see that it is running up into money.
Senator PEPPER. Judge Mansfield, part of the improvement proposed in this bill has already been recommended by the Army engineers, has it not?
Representative MANSFIELD. Yes, sir; in its entirety it has been recommended. The greatest difficulty is the pipe across Florida for temporary use.
The chairman of the State Railway Commission of Texas, who has jurisdiction over the pipe lines there, informs me that he is pretty sure that we can secure two or three lines of 10-inch pipe to go across Florida. I understand that Mr. Ickes has secured one from Texasone end in my district, by the way-an 8-inch pipe.
My thought was that the present steel barges can be used for gasoline. For crude oil and all other types except gasoline and kerosenethere will not be much kerosene, of coursewooden barges can be used for shipment. They are almost as practical as steel for that purpose. It has been done. I was reared along the Ohio River when I was a boy, and I never saw a steel barge. I lived there for 20 years, when there was nothing but wooden boats. There was not a lock or a dam in the river at that time, except one that was started or proposed up at Pittsburgh. They used wooden boats back in those days; they can do it again. I do not contemplate it as a permanent thing but only as a war measure.
Right after the Civil War we did not have coffee; we used parched rye and used essences of coffee with which to flavor it. We can do many things in wartime that we would not think of doing in time of peace. There would be no trouble about getting lumber and no trouble about building the barges.
Furthermore, the more crude and fuel oil you carry in wooden barges, the more tank railroad cars you release for the handling of gasoline. The gentleman at the head of the Interstate Commerce Commission, the Coordinator, can arrange all those things. He can put everything to work where it will do a most satisfactory job. That is my view.
My further view is that if we are going to do anything about this, we ought to strike while the iron is hot-right now.
Senator LEE. Judge Mansfield, where would this intercoastal canal be located ? It would lead from where to where if these sections were to be connected?
Representative MANSFIELD. It would be a continuous line, then, from up above Philadelphia, at Trenton, N. J. It would be completed from there to Corpus Christi, Tex. About 128 miles beyond Corpus Christi, toward the Mexican border, have been approved by the engineers but have not been approved by Congress.
Senator LEE. Is the link across Florida the only part that is not now completed ?
Representative MANSFIELD. That is the only missing link at present. Senator LEE. That would connect the two systems?
Representative MANSFIELD. There would be 2,400 miles in this whole system, and there would be a further link across New Jersey, going into the industrial district near New York; into the Kill von Kull.
Senator LEE. Would this canal serve any purpose in peacetime?
Representative MANSFIELD. Tremendously so. When General Goethals testified before my committee a good many years ago, he made the statement that it would probably carry 5,000,000 tons a year. It carries 29,000,000 tons. This last year there were 29,600,000 tons.
Senator LEE. A barge in that canal would not be exposed to the torpedoes of submarines?
Reprsentative MANSFIELD. Not at all.
Representative MANSFIELD. That would be across the Gulf temporarily. The Gulf there is shallow. When we approved the bill for the ship canal a few years ago, we provided for a jetty to run out into the Gulf 17 miles to get to the contour in the Gulf. The testimony of the engineers will show that submarines cannot possibly operate there. It is shallow. The only difficulty would be in storms and hurricanes which occur occasionally on the Gulf.
Senator LEE. But in case of storms and hurricanes there would be much more protection in the canal than if the boats were out on the high seas?
Representative MANSFIELD. Oh, yes. You cannot operate tankers safely on the Gulf. If you try to carry all the oil across the Gulf in tankers, the German submarines would be as thick as fiddlers in hell in 3 weeks.
Excuse my French, Senator Caraway.
Senator PEPPER. Can you imagine this intracoastal waterway being constructed, as it is, over a thousand miles on the east coast and over 900 miles on the Gulf coast, and a 92-mile conecting link not across the Peninsula of Florida-can you imagine that the United States Government would allow 1,900 miles of intracoastal waterway to be useless for national purposes just because a 92-mile link was not connected ?
Representative MANSFIELD. That is not according to my judgment. But there are lots of people in the United States, 130,000,000, and you cannot get them all to the same viewpoint. I have been trying for many years. Senator PEPPER. I know you have.
Senator PEPPER. To a considerable extent the absence of a national intracoastal canal system from the Gulf coast to the Atlantic coast, and the presence of enemy submarines, have interrupted the normal warter-borne commerce between those termini?
Representative MANSFIELD. Certainly; yes.
Senator PEPPER. The only way of restoring that commerce would be to make this protected inland waterway system available to that commerce ?
Representative MANSFIELD. Yes. Of course you know that when ships were in operation there were shipments not only of oil, but of practically everything else. But when is that going to be restored ? No man can say. From the best authority I can get, it will be many years before we are going to have tankers restored to that trade, eren when the war comes to an end. There is a great scarcity of steel for that purpose, and there will be a great demand for tankers throughout the world for a great many years to come.
Senator PEPPER. So, if I understand you correctly, Judge, you are prepared to say out of your many years of experience as a Member of the House and as chairman of the Rivers and Harbors Committee of the House, that if the war is going on when this canal is constructed, whenever that is, it will be of invaluable use to the Government as a war measure, and that if peace comes by that time it will be of immeasurable benefit to the country as a means for the transportation of commerce in time of peace?
Representative MANSFIED. There is no question about that, in my judgment; none whatever.
Senator PEPPER. Therefore you have recommended, as I understand it, the immediate initiation of construction on this project, or as soon as it can possibly be undertaken?
Representative MANSFIELD. Yes.
Senator PEPPER. With pipe lines for temporary relief, and the waterway for permanent relief?
Representative MANSFIELD. Yes. The pipe lines, if we can get the pipe, which I believe we can, can be built in a few months, not more than 6 months, I should think. In fact, the gentlemen who are familiar with such things have given me the information that the construction can easily be done within 6 months.
Senator PEPPER. I am very much obliged to you, Judge Mansfield. Representative MANSFIELD. Thank you, one and all.
Senator CARAWAY. You have made a very interesting statement.
Senator LEE. I understand that Mr. De Golyer is here. May I ask him some questions on the point we were pursuing when we recessed?
Senator CARAWAY. Certainly, Senator Lee. STATEMENT OF E. DE GOLYER, DIRECTOR OF CONSERVATION,
OFFICE OF THE PETROLEUM COORDINATOR, WASHINGTON, D. C.
Senator LEE. Mr. De Golyer, you heard most of the testimony on the Lucas amendment. Does the Oil Coordinator favor that amendment?
Mr. DE GOLYER. No, sir.
Mr. DE GOLYER. We feel that the scarcity of oil-well material is such that what we would have left to use must be used very sparingly from an over-all national standpoint. We are told now by the W. P. B. that we must live out of our inventories indefinitely into the future. The situation is so serious that we are starting studies of how we may reclaim material that is now in use in the fields, to use it again at other places for higher uses.
Senator LEE. Is it your opinion that the same material which would be required for use in the Illinois field, if the Lucas amendment were passed, could be used to greater advantage somewhere else or in some other manner?
Mr. DE GOLYER. Yes, sir; it certainly is. The drilling of additional wells in Illinois will not add to the Illinois reserves. It will . make more oil quickly and immediately available, but what we gain in that way at the moment we will lose a short time later. I myself, as an individual, am not unacquainted with Illinois. I drilled å discovery well. I was one of the persons in this present scale of production in Illinois, and brought the first rotary in. But if you study the history of Illinois itself, this is a second crop, and it can only be harvested so far. What we need there is new reserves, and unless we get new reserves, more intensive drilling is no solution of the problem.
Senator LEE. Would the plan under the Lucas amendment be injurious to the oil supply?
Mr. DE GOLYER. The Lucas amendment appears by consent to have been amended again, so I am not certain what the present form is. There were two parts to it, as I understand it, as it was originally proposed; one which allowed unrestricted drilling of wells to a certain depth, and a further part which allowed free and unrestricted use of all material that is now fabricated. That is, in terms of the
, War Production Board's advice to us, unrestricted use of practically all of the material that we are likely to have for some time.
Senator LEE. Do you have an opinion on some other method of relieving this Atlantic seaboard shortage that would be better?
Mr. DE GOLYER. I do not think this will afford a great deal of relief.
Senator LEE. I mean, other than the Lucas amendment.
Mr. DE GOLYER. No, sir; I do not think that the Lucas amendment will relieve it, and I do not think that by making use of every piece of metal that is open to us it will be relieved. We have just got to do the best we can.