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Governor in the old Capitol Square of Richmond when I was a boy, and

among my playmates were the sons of Fitzhugh Lee, who was then the Governor of Virginia. I then changed from that southern atmosphere into this similarly historic atmosphere of Philadelphia, and I found myself very much at home, and particularly was I made at home þy the wonderful people among whom I found that I was settled, and who over a period of almost 49 years have made my life very pleasant, not only because of their friendships but because of their very many acts of kindness and the very many honors that they have visited upon me. I know of no more pleasant occasion upon which I have had the honor to speak in Philadelphia than this one today, here in this old historic hall. As Mr. Robert T. McCracken, counsel for our association, pointed out to you gentlemen at luncheon, it was constructed beginning in 1787.

It was the temporary seat of Government of the United States of America for an entire decade, from 1790 until 1800. As Congressman Bradley has already put upon the record in his excellent opening address, here met the first Senate of the United States, the First Congress of the United States. In this building George Washington was inaugurated President. In this building, in the hall above us, he delivered his Farewell Address when he retired from the service of his country. 'Of course, not only because of these events that I have indicated is this historic ground, but within a stone's throw figuratively of this building there lived all of these great figures in early American history, with whose lives even the 10-year-old school children of America are so familiar. But in this hall there met upon many, many occasions not only President Washington, not only Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, John Hancock, John Adams, James Madison, James Monroe, and other giants of days not so long gone,

but there came that distinguished citizen of Philadelphia, Andrew Hamilton, under whose direction Independence Hall; that adjoins this building, was erected. Andrew Hamilton was one of the leaders of community life in Philadelphia, and also made famous by his representation in New York of the humble printer who was prosecuted for libel there and for whose acquittal Andrew Hamilton's courage was responsible. When Andrew Hamilton decided to take over the responsibility for erecting the State House, and for which purpose it was intended, Philadelphia was a very small community, and yet it was the most populous community in America. It was then the leading city in the United States, it was the living heart of the United States, and when it became the site of an independent government, a government of free people by their own chosen representatives, Philadelphia achieved a distinction that has never left it. It made a mark upon history that nothing can ever erase. But in addition to this historical record, there was made here in Philadelphia a very clear, still-existing, physical record in the structures that were then erected for governmental purposes and for other public purposes. Within a very short distance from this building, gentlemen, there exists the most important historic shrines of the United States of America.

I am not unaware that the Capitol Building in Washington is much larger. I am not unaware of the fact that there exists on the eastern seaboard those beautiful cities that we all love. If I recited them or listed them, first in the order in which they appeal to me, I would say,


you are here.

for example, first comes Charleston, S. C., with its splendid old architecture, still so well preserved and the beautiful wrought-iron works, beautiful piazzas and beautiful gardens, the beautiful water vista that Charleston has. Then I would mention Salem, Mass., Portsmouth, N. H., Newcastle, Del., and similar places of historic importance in America. The eastern seaboard was, of course, the first part of the country settled. Naturally it has the oldest structures. Some of them have passed away. I of course should have mentioned BostonBoston with Faneuil Hall, the old South Church and the old North Church, Bunker Hill Monument. There are many structures there in Boston that appeal to us, and I myself have passed pleasantly many days in Boston visiting those places of such historic importance. There is in New York a national shrine in the Federal Hall. Besides these buildings, there are many sites, national parks made of old battle grounds. There are other historic shrines, such as the headquarters of General Washington at Morristown, over which Mr. Rommel so ably presides, as the headquarters of this division of the National Park Service. Then there is the old park at Trenton, up in Washington's Crossing and there is a monument preserved by the State of Pennsylvania to mark the place from which .General Washington set out with the troops for the Jersey shore. Then no great distance from Philadelphia is Valley Forge Park, which you will visit while

But I want to centralize what I have to say principally upon this area here in Philadelphia. And I want to indicate to you early in the record, so that the other members of the cemmittee, if they have occasion to and the time to read this record, will not overlook the fact that this historic area of Philadelphia includes these buildings: First, the Independence Hall group; Independence Hall, Congress Hall; the Hall of the American Philosophical Society. Then just to the east, Carpenters' Hall, where the First Continental Congress met, and which in the years since then has been so splendidly preserved by the Carpenters' Company, who then owned it and continue to own it. And then Old Christ Church, which General Washington and so many of the leaders of American thought in his time attended. The Old Friends Meeting House on Arch Street which you passed this morning. St. Peter's Church to the south here, the First Catholic Church built in the United States. In old Willing's Alley St. Joseph's Church, which is not only well preserved but used every day. Old Swedes' Church, which was erected, the present building, in 1700, and which was not the first building of the Swedish Congregation that was established here in the settlement, that subsequently the English took over under William Penn. But we have the First United States Bank Building, the old Stock Exchange Building, the most distinguished of its kind left in America. And we have the First United States Customs House and the old Morris Mansion here on South Eighth Street, which has been in the ownership of one family and the occupancy of one family since time almost immemorial. The Betsy Ross House, the home of the fabricator of the first American flag. Now I have not given you a complete list of the historic structures in this area, but I have given the most important of them, with this thought in mind, that I might indicate to you why it is that this area deserves some Federal attention at this time.

As Mr. McCracken pointed out today, as the capitol of the United States for a decade, Philadelphia has some claim upon national attention and national interest. We are an old city, and in company with other old cities, we suffer from a decline in urban population. The invention of the automobile, and particularly the creation of the automobile trucks has tended to drive out of the central communities the homes of those who like to sleep quietly at night and those who like to have playgrounds for their children. It has been the case with all old cities in America, that they have experienced a decline in the value, in the usefulness and in the attraction of the areas constituting the oldest sections in those cities. I have been to all of those old cities, and I found that in one of them, for example in St. Louis, the government there entered upon a project for the creation of the Jefferson National Park, and when it did, the Government destroyed a slum area along the Mississippi River that had'declined, as has this area in Philadelphia. Now our streets are particularly narrow. They are narrow because at the time that the Governor of the Commonwealth-of the colony-lived at Philadelphia, he had the example of the English cities in mind, particularly London, which was a community of narrow streets. Philadelphia followed it to quite an extent. They were content with having 30-foot, sometimes even 15foot highways. They are now called alleys, and they were for a long time, many of them, called courts.

Our main streets are only from 40 to 60 feet wide, and when you have traveling on those streets truck weighing from 60,000 to 70.000 pounds, and a continuous line of automobile traffic, that vibrates the buildings and weakens their walls. It creates a great amount of dirt and dust in the air, and deprives one of the possibility of rest in the home. When that happens you invariably have a decline in the market value of the buildings that exist in such an area. Now that has been the fate of this section of Philadelphia. These streets and highways to the river front will again become very active, after this war, these streets are contiguous to the wholesale district of Philadelphia. They are the highways that bring in great quantities of produce, from New Jersey, not only for our own consumption but for transhipment. These highways are no longer suitable for private homes. Yet no government such as ours can sit, by and see such a historic area pass out of existence. You might ask us here in Philadelphia if we have created additional parks, and we say to you that we have done so in great measure.

As Mr. Ingersoll indicated to you at luncheon, we have spent scores of millions of dollars in Philadelphia to remove slum areas and to substitute boulevards and parks to accommodate modern urban traffic. But here at this juncture we find that like other old cities, we are suffering from a lack of taxable possibilities. Real estates has long borne the principal burden of taxation in all cities. When real estate declines to the extent that it has in all old American cities, the tax revenues decline proportionately.

Philadelphia has reached the limit of possibility with its taxation upon real estate. Any further taxation will destroy the object of the taxation by causing the people to tear down the buildings to avoid taxes that would be greater than any rent they could obtain from the property. Philadelphia had adopted an additional source

of revenue in taxing the incomes of those who work in the city, and those people have paid in millions of dollars in revenue to the city treasury to help the community over the depression times. Yet New York has not done so. New York has asked for and has obtained Federal aid to a great degree in the last decade. Philadelphia has not asked for and has received very little Federal cooperation and aid, but Philadelphia has not been looking for it. However, the matter has not been called to your attention probably until now. So we are asking now, representing our national shrines, for Government aid in creating here in Philadelphia first, an improvement that will protect these historic structures; secondly, for aid in establishing an improvement that will properly set off Independence Hall and the Independence Hall area, Carpenters' Hall, and these other structures, in an atmosphere that will give them an environment commensurate with their national and international importance. When you look at Independence Hall from the south you are met with a pleasing prospect. When you look at it from the north, your prospect is very unpleasant; Philadelphia as it was, back in the eighteenth century, when the streets were narrow, the homes were only two and three stories in height, and there was no building in Philadelphia over three or four stories high at that time. Then these buildings did not look so out of proportion with their surroundings, but now, as the most important structure in the world, Independence Hall, is not properly located from the point of view of a citizen of the United States. Not living in Philadelphia, I am sure that you were disappointed with the aspect of Independence Hall from the north when you came here this morning.

We are asking you gentlemen as the representatives of the Federal Government to look with favor upon this bill. We propose to have the Federal Government take the second step in setting apart Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell as the No. 1 shrine of the United States. Now, what was the first step? That was when the Federal Government signed a contract with the city setting apart this group of buildings as a national shrine. That contract provides that the Federal Government and the city shall cooperate in the maintenance of this shrine, that the city will at no time make any major alteration in this shrine without the consent of the Federal Government obtained in advance. It provides that the Federal Government might take the proper steps to make this shrine available to tourists, to all citizens who come here desirous of seeing it; that the Government might cause to be written and printed proper bulletins and circulars setting forth the points of interest and items of interest in connection with the shrine. And it stops there. Now the Federal Government, we think, not only would be justified in creating this Commission as a step in the restoration of this entire area of historic Philadelphia, but it would be somewhat negligent if it did not do so.

May we consider for a moment the expense involved, and I am not going to do it at any great length. I think you ought to get this from me or from someone, and perhaps I had better give it to you. We are asking you to create this park that will extend from the north side of Chestnut Street, northward approximately four city blocksthree main city blocks—an area having an assessed value for taxation

for the year 1945 of $4,096,000. In this area, I have been told, after the last survey that was made for us by students of the University of Pennsylvania, there were nine dwellings.

I am advised today that there are no dwellings now-no occupied dwellings within this area. That, therefore, it represents entirely a business area and no housing problem is involved in the destruction of the old buildings, no one would be put out of house and home. There are two concrete buildings included in the area. They are the only buildings the destruction of which would cost any substantial sum of money. I have gotten estimates from two large concerns engaged in the business of demolishing old buildings-estimates of the cost of demolishing every structure in the proposed park area. The estimates were from $100,000 to $200,000, and both of the gentlemen who are presidents, respectively, of the two concerns tell me that the cost would be nearer $100,000 than $200,000, that I would be safe in saying to you that $100,000 would represent the cost of demolishing and level- . ing the entire area. The cost of landscaping so as to make it suitable as a national park would depend, of course, upon what the National Park Service or the agency in charge might choose to spend, and the estimates that we have of the cost of suitable landscaping, in line with the plans of Mr. Roy Larsen, the architect of Independence Hall Association, would represent an expenditure of not over $200,000. Therefore, you have a total expense involved in the location of this park of first, the cost of acquiring the property. If you should pay the entire assessed value, it would be $4,096,000. I can say to you frankly that no properties in this district that I know of are selling now for anything like the assessed value. I myself have sold properties very near here in an estate in which I was cotrustee—we no longer own any of them—but we have sold properties within an area of two or three blocks—within a distance of two or three blocks from here—at one-seventh of the assessed value. And may I say with due modesty that for 4 years I was assistant city solicitor of Philadelphia having in charge what was called the road bureau.

That road bureau had charge of the condemnation of property for municipal purposes and the settling of the claim and the trial of law suits of those that could not be settled, and over a period of 4 years we handled $17,000,000 worth of condemnations. The Parkway that you passed over today, the Roosevelt Boulevard, many libraries and smaller parks—and my experience in trying these cases and in settling these cases enables me to say to you that I am certain that the cost to the Federal Government in acquiring these properties would not exceed $3,000,000, including the counsel fees and the expert fees that you might pay to the appraisers representing the Government, so that if we will assume for a moment that this is a correct statement, we start with an expense of $3,000,000 for the land, $200,000 for demolishing the buildings and grading the land, and $150,000 for landscaping. That makes a maximum expense of $3,350,000 that would be incurred by the Government in setting up here in Philadelphia this national park. Of course, these details are more for the commission, when appointed, I realize, but I think you would want to know them, in order that you may be properly informed.

Gentlemen, I should not add much to this, because I am available and will be while you are here in Philadelphia, and I shall answer infor

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