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the year round. The first cost of the work would be $1,000, the electric wires being underground; the cost of lighting would be 70 cents per lamp per night, or a total of $1,788.50 per annum.
JUDICIARY SQUARE AND GROUNDS AROUND THE NEW PENSION BUILDING.
Operations were resumed early in the fiscal year upon the improvement of the grounds around the Pension Building and in the other sections of the park.
The portion of the grounds west of the building, nearly 2 acres in extent, was reduced to the proper grade by the removal of about 4,000 cubic yards of earth; gravel roads and walks were constructed from F and G streets to the west entrance, the lawns laid out, covered with soil, their edges sodded, and the remainder sown with grass seed. The roads and walks in this section cover an area of 12,176 square feet, being 761 feet long by 16 feet wide. In constructing them there were used 300 cubic yards of rubble-stone and rough gravel and 225 cubic yards of fine gravel; 840 cubic yards of good surface loam and 500 square yards of sod were used on the lawns.
On the north front of the building about 2,100 cubic yards of earth were placed in position to bring this portion to the proper grade.
In the grounds south of the building the entrances to the main road at Fourth and Fifth streets were reconstructed, North River bluestone curbing being placed in position; at the Fourth-street entrance the roadbed for about 50 square yards was paved with trap-rock blocks, the sidewalk adjacent repaired, and the entire main road between Fourth and Fifth streets regraveled, rolled, and repaired.
A new gravel roadway was constructed from near the park lodge to the Pension Building; it covered an area of 5,575 square feet, being 223 feet long by 25 feet wide; two new drain-traps were built, 51 feet of 6-inch terra-cotta pipe laid to connect them with the main drains, and 73 feet of brick gutter laid connecting with the traps.
Two additional gravel walks connecting with the F-street road were constructed; their total length was 288 feet, with a width of 10 feet. The low grounds bordering the roads were brought to proper level with good soil and sown down with grass seed.
A flower bed was constructed around the fountain and the adjacent gravel road widened.
Much attention was given to planting at this reservation; 372 flowering shrubs, 89 ornamental, deciduous, and 27 evergreen trees were set out in the immediate vicinity of the Pension Building; the evergreens were large, handsome trees, removed from Henry and Seaton parks, where they were being seriously injured by the smoke from the railroad locomotives,
Asphalt walks 684 feet long by 5 feet wide were constructed, leading from the Louisiana avenue and E street entrances to the City Hall, and a bluestone flag pavement 198 feet long by 3 feet wide was laid from a point midway between Louisiana avenue and E street to the same building; a cobble-stone gutter about 4 feet wide, covering an area of 38 square yards, was laid opposite the watchman's lodge, and a trap-rock crossing covering an area of 19 square yards laid across the gutter and asphalt walk for the convenience of teams going to the east entrance of the City Hall; about 36 square yards of trap-rock pavement was laid at the west entrance of the City Hall.
All roads and walks were graveled and repaired where necessary, and
the asphalt walk on the line of E street between Fourth and Fifth repaired.
All lawns were mown and rolled from time to time during the season, gutters and drain-traps kept clean, trees and shrubs pruned and mulched, flower beds laid out and planted, and every effort made to maintain the entire park in as good condition as possible.
Much work is still required to be done, the grounds on the north and east of the Pension Building are yet to be improved, asphalt paths should be constructed leading to the building, and the main road south of the building, between Fourth and Fifth streets, should have an asphalt pavement.
It is hoped that the improvement of these grounds, except the asphalt roads, can be completed during the coming fiscal year.
The funds available for the care, repair, and refurnishing the Execu tive Mansion have been used as indicated, extensive repairs having been made to the furniture, which in many cases had become worn and shabby.
In the main vestibule the tile floor was repaired, the fresco work on the ceiling and side walls, which had become obscured by smoke, was cleaned and restored, and the wood-work, including front door, cleaned and repainted.
In the East Room the wood-work was repainted where necessary, one set of furniture reupholstered, the curtains thoroughly repaired, and a new sofa purchased for the center of the room.
In the Green Parlor a portion of the furniture was repaired and reup. holstered, a new carpet laid in place of the badly-worn and shabby one that had been down for some years, and the fresco work of the ceiling was cleaned and restored.
In the blue parlor the wood-work was touched up with paint, a new carpet put down, the old soiled and worn furniture regilded and re-upholstered, and new heavy curtains put up, the old ones being transferred to one of the bed-rooms. New window shades were hung in the south windows of the east room, the blue and red parlors. New matting was laid in the blue parlor in June, 1888.
The chandeliers of the green, blue, and red parlors and the State dining-room were cleaned, repaired, and regilded.
In the State dining-room the wood-work and walls were touched up with paint where necessary, and new lace curtains hung in the place of the worn and shabby sets that had been in use for several years. number of the State dining-room chairs were re-upholstered.
The wood-work of the private dining-room was repainted. New linen covers were purchased for the furniture in the east room, main corridor, green parlor, and upper corridor.
On the second floor the wood-work of the corridor was touched up with paint where necessary, the library repainted, the wood-work of three of the office-rooms coated with hard-oil finish, and that of three bed-rooms repainted.
The furniture in the southwest bed-room was r-eupholstered, a part of the old carpet of the east room laid on the floor in place of the old, worn-out one formerly used; a set of shelves placed on mantlepiece, and other minor improvements made.
In the western portion of the upper corridor the old shabby furni ture was repaired and re-upholstered, and one new sofa added; in the office portion of the upper corridor the leather sofas were re-upholstered
and repaired. A new sofa was placed in the northwest bed-room, and some new table-covers purchased. A new bath tub was placed in the bath-room.
The entire attic was whitewashed, a large storage closet built, and the copper pipes under the floor leading from the roof were enlarged and repaired. The new tin roof was repainted.
In the basement the wood-work of the engine-room and the iron doors of the furnace were painted; the entire corridor, laundry, kitchen, furnace-room, and outer area walls were whitewashed; a new closet was placed in the servants' bath-room and new washtubs in the laundry. The elevator pump was repaired several times and the elevator put in good order.
The sewer-pipe leading from kitchen to main sewer was taken up, cleaned out, and put back, and various repairs made to the sewers; the entire plumbing of the mansion was overhauled and put in complete order.
The house was draped with mourning in March on account of the death of the Chief Justice of the United States, and after the mourning was removed in April the front balcony and other portions of the north front, which had been badly stained, were painted.
A wooden storm-house was constructed around the west entrance on the basement floor. New linoleum was placed on the floors of the kitchen and pantry.
The ceiling of the south balcony, which was in a dangerous condition, was taken down and renewed; the old timbers and lathes to which the mortar was attached were found to be thoroughly decayed; the south balcony was repainted where necessary.
All windows and doors throughout the house needing attention were eased and repaired.
The entire gas-fixtures were cleaned, repaired, and put in complete order during the year.
All lace curtains were repaired and re-upholstered; all carpets (about 3,500 yards) laid and curtains hung in the autumn of 1887, and carpets taken up and shaken, and curtains taken down and stored away for the summer, in June, 1888.
The entire sewerage of the White House stables was overhauled and some necessary improvements made; the roof of the stable was repaired, two rooms were whitewashed, and various repairs made to windows and doors.
All furnaces, ranges, chimneys, and stoves were cleaned and repaired where necessary. Gas-fixtures were put up in one of the basement rooms, also in the stable and on the north and south fronts where awnings are placed during evening receptions.
Considerable repairs were made to the greenhouses.
The outside of the conservatory and the inside of two smaller greenhouses were painted; an entire new superstructure was constructed on the house opposite State, War, and Navy Building, the middle bed of the house raised, new iron and stone plant-benches placed in position, and the heating pipes re-arranged.
From some old brick and other old materials on hand a small additional structure was built to take the place of the old broken-down hotbeds.
The large rose-house was thoroughly repaired, iron columns placed in position to support the roof, new rafters and purlins introduced to replace those already decayed, and new shafting inserted for opening and closing ventilators.
In the Grapery new side benches and sills were constructed to replace those worn out and decayed, and the tin portion of the roof was repaired. Every effort has been made to maintain these greenhouses, which were constructed previous to March, 1885, in as good condition as possible. The decayed planks were removed from the floor of one of the rooms under the conservatory, the old brick taken up, cleaned and relaid, and a new brick tank constructed.
In the grounds of the mansion the lawns were regularly mown and raked, paths and roads repaired and rolled, trees and shrubs pruned, mulched and watered, flower beds laid out and planted with ornamental foliage and flowering plants, new trees and shrubs set out and a few dead ones removed.
The stone wall upon which the iron fence on the north front rests was thoroughly repaired.
Some minor repairs were made to the asphalt roads in the north grounds.
The fountains were repaired and maintained in good order.
TELEGRAPH CONNECTING THE CAPITOL WITH THE DEPARTMENTS AND GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE.
The telegraph lines now under control of this office are as follows: The line of overhead wires consists of 77 poles, covering a distance of about 3 miles with a length of about 8 miles of wire; this line, starting from the State, War, and Navy Building runs to the Executive Mansion, thence to the Treasury Building, thence to G street, thence to Eighth street, thence to H street, thence to North Capitol street, and thence to the Capitol; connected with it is one running from the Treasury De partment along Fourteenth street to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
It is hoped during the coming year to connect the new Pension Building with the main line along G street; authority to erect the necessary poles on Fifth street between G street and the Pension Building was asked some time since of the District Commissioners, and if granted the line will be completed as soon as funds are available.
There is about 500 feet of 13-conductor Patterson cable running from the cable-pole in the Capitol Grounds into the basement of the Senate, and 250 feet of 20-conductor cable running from the cable-pole on the corner of Seventeenth and G streets into the State, War, and Navy Building.
The under-ground cable now in use, known as the Waring anti-induc tion cable, consists of two 6-conductor cables running from the State, War, and Navy Building to the United States Senate and House of Representatives, a distance of 2.6 miles; this cable runs down Seventeenth street to New York avenue, through the grounds south of the Executive Mansion to Fifteenth street, along Fifteenth street to B street, along B street to Sixth street, thence to Missouri avenue, along Missouri avenue to Third street, along Third street to Pennsylvania avenue, along Pennsylvania avenue to First street, along First street to B street, thence to North Capitol street, and through the conduit into the Capitol building; about 1,500 feet of cable runs through the Capitol, and about 300 feet is used in connecting the Executive Mansion with the main cable.
The offices connected with these lines are as follows: Executive Mansion, United States Senate, United States House of Representatives, Treasury Department, State, War, and Navy Departments, Department ENG 88175
of Justice, Post-Office Department, Department of the Interior, Gov. ernment Printing Office, Signal Office, National Museum, and Office of Public Buildings and Grounds. Each office has two circuits and two sets of instruments except the Signal Office and Museum; each has from two to four cells in the local battery.
The main battery, located in the Office of Public Buildings and Grounds, has 80 cells for the overhead wires and 36 cells for the underground cable.
During the year the main battery was increased and, together with the local batteries, maintained in good condition; all crosses and obstructions of every kind were removed from the wires as rapidly as possible; the blizzard of March 11, 1888, did great damage, and it was several days before the overhead wires were in proper condition for work.
Six new poles were erected in place of those which were badly decayed; 4, decayed at the bottom, were cut off and reset and 4 straightened. The fixtures on the Winder Building were improved, and new ones erected on the Department of the Interior.
A new cable box was placed on the cable pole at the Capitol, and 20 feet of 13-conductor cable placed in the pole; 500 feet of cable was taken down in the basement of the Capitol and replaced in a better position.
The Office of the Department of Justice was refitted with instruments, and all the other instruments on the lines received attention from time to time.
The main office and battery were removed in February, 1888, from the corner of Seventeenth street and Pennsylvania avenue to the basement of the west wing of the State, War, and Navy Building.
In April, 1888, in accordance with a resolution of the United States Senate, a plan and estimate were submitted for a comprehensive system of underground wires for telegraph and telephone service to connect the several Departments and Bureaus of the Government in Washington City.
In view of the possibility of no appropriation being made for this new system, the estimate presented for the last two years is again submitted for replacing the present overhead wires with underground cables.
The overhead wires are daily becoming a greater and greater nuisance, and the experience after the March blizzard clearly shows the necessity of placing all wires under ground as soon as possible; the growth of the trees on the sidewalks has reached such a condition that during wet or windy weather the wires are almost useless.
To remove the entire overhead system and replace it with underground 6-wire cables will cost $8,500.
The overhead wires should be removed at once, and the United States can not well demand that private corporations shall bury their wires unless the Government takes the initiative and places its own wires under ground.
In the discharge of my official duties connected with the telegraph lines I have received intelligent and efficient assistance from Mr. A. J. Kennedy, the electrician and lineman on duty in this office.
SURVEYING AND DRAUGHTING.
The time of the only draughtsman allowed this office is mostly taken up with the care of the old records of Washington City. He is required to be in his office during the greater portion of each day to exhibit