National Conference on Industrial Conciliation (19.

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entitled to be present in person or by counsel through-
out the continuation of the investigation, and shall
be entitled to a hearing thereon, subject always to
such rules of procedure as the Commission may
adopt; but nothing in this section contained shall
be construed as entitling said parties to be present
during the proceedings of the Commission prior to
or after the completion of their investigation.

SECTION 5. For the purpose of this act, the Com-
mission, or any one Commissioner, shall have power
to administer oaths and affirmations, to sign sub ;
pcenas, to require the testimony of witnesses either
by attendance in person or by deposition, and to
require the production of such books, papers, con-
tracts, agreements and documents as may be deemed
material to a just determination of the matters
under investigation ; and to this end the Commission
may invoke the aid of the courts of the United States
to compel witnesses to attend and testify and to pro-
duce such books, papers, contracts, agreements, and
documents; and for the purposes of this section it
shall be vested with the same powers, to the same


extent and under the same conditions and penalties,
as are vested in the Interstate Commerce Commis-
sion by the Act to regulate commerce, approved
February 4th, 1887, and the Acts amendatory and
in addition thereto; and it shall be the duty of the
said courts of the United States to render said Com-
mission the same aid to the same extent and under
the same conditions as is provided by said Acts in
aid of said Interstate Commerce Commission; and
witnesses examined as aforesaid shall be subject to
the same duties and entitled to the same immunities
as is provided in said Acts.

SECTION 6. For the purposes of this Act the Com-
mission may, whenever it deems it expedient, enter
and inspect any public institution, factory, workshop,
or mine, and may employ one or more competent
experts to examine accounts, books or official re-
ports, or to examine and report on any matter
material to the investigation, in which such exam-
ination and report may be deemed of substantial

SECTION 7. Having made such investigation and
elicited such information of all the facts connected
with the controversy into which they were ap-
pointed to inquire, the Commission shall formulate
its report thereon, setting forth the causes of the same,
locating so far as may be the responsibility therefor,
and making such specific recommendations as shall
in its judgment put an end to such controversy or
disturbance and prevent a recurrence thereof, sur-
gesting any legislation which the case may seem to



SECTION 8. The report of such commission shall
forthwith be transmitted to the President and by
him communicated, together with such portions of
the evidence elicited and any comments or further
recommendation he may see fit to make, to the
principal parties responsible for the controversy or
involved therein; and the papers shall be duly
transmitted to Congress for its information and

SECTION 9. The Commission may, from time to
time, make or amend such general rules or orders as
may be deemed appropriate for the order and regu-
lation of its investigations and proceedings, includ-
ing forms of notices and the service thereof, which
shall conform as nearly as may be to those in use in
the courts of the United States.

SECTION 10. The President is authorized and em-
powered to fix a reasonable compensation to be paid
to the members of the Commission from the Treasury
at such times and in such manner as he shall direct.
The Commission shall have authority to employ and
fix the compensation of such employees as it may
find necessary to the proper performance of its duties,
subject to the approval of the Secretary of the In-

The Commission shall be furnished by the Secre-
tary of the Interior with suitable offices and all
necessary office supplies. Witnesses summoned be-
fore the Commission shall be paid the same fees and
mileage that are paid to witnesses in the courts of
the United States.

All of the expenses of the Commission, including


all necessary expenses for transportation incurred
by the Commissioners or by their employees under
their orders, in making any investigation under this
Act, shall be allowed and paid, on the presentation
of itemized vouchers therefor approved by the Chair-
man of the Commission and the Secretary of the In-

SECTION n. No Commission appointed under this
Act shall continue for a period of over three months
from the date of the appointment thereof, unless at
any time before the expiration of such period the
President shall otherwise order.

THE CHAIRMAN: As this question of arbitration is
now up, I will call upon Mr. John McMackin, State
Labor Commissioner of New York State.

MR. MCMACKIN: Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen
During the last eighteen months, through the con-
solidation of the different labor bureaus of this State
into the Department of Labor, it has been my for-
tune to have had some little connection with the
strikes in New York State. I found that one of the
greatest obstacles to the settlement of strikes was
the refusal of employers either to recognize the right
of the employees to organize, or to treat with them
as an organization. This is particularly so in the
small towns of New York State, and it is so with
newly organized railroads, such as our trolley lines.
It applies in some cases to firms conducted by what
are termed trusts. I have in mind the case of a firm
or so-called trust, where the men were working eleven
hours a day. They went out on strike for a reduc-


tion of hours, and we took every means possible to
bring about an understanding, when finally the com-
pany informed us that if the men did not return to
work the company would simply close the factory
and transfer the work to another place, which would
have practically meant the ruin of that locality.
The result was that these people had to submit and
go to work. I had another case in one of the southern
tier counties, connected in the same way as the other
cases that I have referred to, and they, for some reason j
refused to treat with their men and threatened to
shut down the business.

The influence of this Federation has been of im-
mense advantage and benefit to officers of the State
whose business it is to bring about amicable relations,
because it has influenced employer and employee to
think of their relations to one another. I may cite
a case to you to show how a community suffers by
the misunderstanding and obstinacy of the officers of
a corporation, in three counties of this State there
was a protracted strike on a trolley railroad, tying
up all means of communication for four or five
months. We tried to bring about an understanding
with the president of the company and its counsel,
but they said, "No; we don't intend to treat with
these people. We intend to wipe out whatever there
is of a union here." "Well," said I, "my friends,"
you may wipe it out, but what comes after?" The
result was the sheriffs of these three counties ordered
out the militia. The road ran about eighty miles
through a wild country that it was impossible to pro-
tect. It has cost those three counties some $48,000


for the maintenance of the militia. And, after all
this trouble, the company finally settled the matter.
The original cause of the trouble was the discharge of
a man whom the company had accused of running
a freight car at such a rapid pace as to collide with
a passenger car, though no one was hurt thereby.
After the strike was over, the company investigated
the discharge of this man, and last week reinstated
him, admitting that there was no real cause for all
that strike. Now you can see the .difference. Work-
ingmen are abused and charged with being senseless,
reckless, etc., but here men representing large in-
terests jeopardized not alone their own interests, but
put the people to all this trouble and unnecessary

Now, I have listened with a great deal of pleasure
and delight to the very able and instructive paper
of Mr. Adams, and I must say that I feel much as Mr.
Adams does. But I would call to Mr. Adams' at-
tention the fact that he is treating of conditions prev-
alent twenty-five years ago. At that time there were
not the gigantic industrial corporations and com-
binations that exist to-day. What was possible
twenty-five years ago is no longer possible under our
industrial system. As to the possibility of obtaining
data from corporations, let me tell Mr. Adams that
it is well-nigh impossible. Colonel Wright could in-
form him that during the taking of the census of
1890 there were several of the largest industrial cor-
porations of the country that absolutely refused to
answer the questions of the Federal Government for
use in the census. When Colonel Wright took the


work in hand he found that even under the law he
could not compel them to answer these questions.
And that is the reason why to-day some drastic
means are required whereby the public may obtain
that general knowledge so essential if we are not to
fail even in our industrial movements for peace.
Before we reach the employee and his dealings with
the employer, how are we to arrive at an understand-
ing as to what is the income, what are the earnings
of a corporation, unless we know the actual capital
invested and the income and earnings on that capi-
tal? Our Board of Mediation and Arbitration in
New York State is clothed with all the power that
Mr. Adams proposes, and yet, I regret to say, that
power has been found inadequate. Some twelve
years ago, I think, there was an extensive strike on
the New York Central Railroad. The Board at that
time was composed of one Democrat, one Republi-
can, and one member supposed to represent organized
labor. The Board was clothed with absolute power
to investigate the earnings of the Central Railroad
and to report on it to the public. As a matter of
fact, that Board voted not to investigate the Central
Railroad, not to call for its papers, and thus the pub-
lic were left in the dark as to the real merits of the
strike. But I am glad to see that Mr. Adams wisely
dispenses with permanent boards of arbitration under
governmental control. It is the wisest thing pos-
sible if we were to adopt that course in settling dis-
putes, that as the crisis arises so should the commis-
sion be appointed to deal with the specific case. But,
preceding that, there must be some method whereby


the public may understand the status of a cor-
poration. All the troubles affecting the industrial
world to-day arise principally from newly organized
men. There is very little trouble, if you take the
country over, in the skilled trades that are well or-
ganized. When gigantic strikes occur, such as oc-
curred in the anthracite coal district and such as
occur on railroads, it is a great question, a question
not even clear in my own mind, whether the interests
of the people are not paramount in such crises; and
whether it is not their right to say to two contending
parties, "You submit this matter to us"; because it
is the public that is concerned; it is their business
that is stopped. What reason, in God's name, when
you reason it out, had these men in Pennsylvania in
denying the right to arbitrate, to stop the supply of
what God placed there in the earth for His children,
simply because they would not agree to arbitrate the
simple question of wages or hours ? Morally, they had
no right, and, if a thing is not morally right, it cannot
be right at all. When workingmen read statements
like those credited to Mr. Baer, they are liable to
make a great deal of trouble. When Mr. Baer
singles himself out as placed there by Divine Provi-
dence to dispense God's bounties, don't you know
that it starts a great many men thinking and wonder-
ing if this is all a fallacy this brotherhood of man
and this Fatherhood of God and that that thinking
bodes no good to what are regarded as vested rights ?
It is because men do not comprehend their true re-
lations, their interdependence in this world, that all
these troubles arise. We feel them more here in


America because we progress faster. We shall have
to settle them in advance of any other nation because
of our advance and our progress. And it is only by
the method wisely taken by the leaders of capital
and by the leaders of the large labor organizations in
this Civic Federation that we shall be able to arrive
at any satisfactory settlements of this industrial
problem. Mr. Adams seems to think that this
struggle will be interminable will go on forever.
I can scarcely think so. Out of these discussions,
this fraternization of employer and employee, and
the ever-increasing desire for justice among men some
means will be found in the not far distant future by
which man will reap the natural result of his labor.
It may be by profit-sharing or by a system of indus-
trial co-operation. I think Mr. Abram S. Hewitt ad-
vanced this solution of the trust problem a couple
of years ago, and there are very few public men who
have given such intelligent attention to economic
questions as Mr. Hewitt has. But, for the present,
the great essential thing is to preserve industrial
peace in this country until we can arrive at a satis-
factory solution of the whole problem. I heartily
agree with Mr. Adams' proposition, with the simple
proviso that it woiild be useless unless Congress and
the several States took some definite action com-
pelling publicity of the actual business of industrial

THE CHAIRMAN: In closing, I am going to ask to
hear from one of our guests from the other side, and
call on Mr. Barnes, who is connected with the Society
of Engineers of England.


MR. G. N. BARNES: Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen
Your somewhat unexpected call on me to address
a few observations to this distinguished audience
finds me unprepared to do so as effectively
as I could wish. And moreover, I remember Mr.
Mosely's opening observations this morning, with
which I perfectly agree, that the appropriate attitude
for us here upon this occasion is one of modest listen-
ing to what goes on. We are here, sir, not to identify
ourselves with this Civic Federation, but rather to
ascertain the facts in regard to the Civic Federation
and ascertain the facts generally in regard to your
social and industrial life in this country, with a view
to reporting on the other side, and with a view, fur-
thermore, of adopting on the other side what seems
to us would be of mutual advantage to both em-
ployer and employed. With your permission, I de-
sire to cover in the few minutes that I shall occupy
your time somewhat of the ground that was
covered this morning by Mr. Mosely. And the
reason why I want to do that is because, although
no doubt Mr. Mosely has given you a truthful and
honest statement of his impressions, I found, un-
fortunately, that that statement did not coincide
with all my impressions, and I am sure Mr. Mosely
will accord to me the right of stating what I have
seen, the impressions that I have found, in regard to
one or more points mentioned.

First of all, I want to identify myself in the full-
est possible degree with what was said by Mr. Mosely
as to the uniform courtesy and kindness which I
have met with at all times. Mr. Maddison of the


Iron Founders' Society, and myself, separated from
the main body of the commission at Chicago, and
since that time we have traveled I think somewhere
about 3,000 miles over your railways. We have
interviewed, I think I would be within the mark in
saying, some hundreds of workmen, foremen, man-
agers and other people, from the president down-
wards, and we have met with the greatest amount
of courtesy and consideration from every single one,
and the utmost facilities have been given us for
seeing what we wished to see and for forming re-
liable opinions as to what came under our observa-
tion. So that it was perfectly obvious to us that
whatever may be the fact as to the improved meth-
ods or shall I say rather the different methods pre-
vailing on this side to the other side, that you on this
side feel that you have nothing to fear in showing us
all that we want to know. We appreciate highly
that kindness, and we hope that, if at any time a
similar delegation should come from this side of the
water, we shall have the opportunity of showing
our appreciation of it.

Another point with which I was in hearty agree-
ment with Mr. Mosely was in regard to that point
and here I am only giving voice to my personal
opinion, which I always do anywhere, and possibly
I may not speak for some of my colleagues or for
the trades union movement on the other side, but
I am going to give you my own opinion Mr. Mosely
contended that every man had a right to choose as
to whether he should be a union man and as to
whether he should belong to one union or another.


I absolutely agree with that sentiment. I have
never in my own union used my influence or raised
my hand to force or bring coercion to bear in any
shape or form on any man to join the union of the
engineers, and I never will. (Applause.) I believe
in the force of moral suasion; I believe in having
behind me, if I have an army at all, an army of will-
ing men, of colleagues and co-operators instead of
forced men. And I know that if I had a number
of forced men behind me the probability is that I
would find they were no good when the pinch

Now to take up those points on which I was not
altogether in agreement, either as to the facts or
deductions of Mr. Mosely. Mr. Mosely stated that
as far as he could gather on this side piece-work was
more general than on the other side. And further,
so far as I could gather, he gave piece-work an un-
qualified endorsement and approval. As far as I
can ascertain I do not profess to have the knowl-
edge of to what extent piece-work obtains on this
side in all industries I should be very much sur-
prised to find that piece-work obtains on this side
more, taking all industries, than it does on our side,
where piece-work is the recognized system of pay-
ment in something like, if my memory serves me
right I am not far out at all events some five-
eighths of the whole of the organized workers of
Great Britain. In my own industry on this side of
the water I find that piece-work is very little more,
if any more, in vogue than on the other side. So
much for the facts. In regard to piece-work and


the attitude of trades unionism and organized labor
upon it, I should say that we have no objection to
working piece-work as such, and that the intro-
duction of piece-work is very largely a question of
the surrounding circumstances and the object with
which piece-work is to be introduced. I have seen
within this last week a workshop organized in this
country under piece-work conditions where the
sanitary arrangements were disgusting; where the
workmen were poor, timid, spiritless looking creat-
ures, the very aspect of whom told me they were
afraid to call their souls their own; where the work-
shop was congested and dirty, and in every way
unfit to work in. And I am thoroughly convinced
that that state of affairs was brought about because
of the system of contract piece-work in that shop;
where the work was undertaken to be done by cer-
tain men who contracted for it and then employed
boys and youths and specialists, who were cut down
at the behest of the contractor until there is noth-
ing more left to cut out from them, and the shop is
in the condition I have given you. Here then the
attitude of organized labor should be to see that in
introducing piece-work into any shop that at all
events the general conditions that obtained before,
the payment of the ordinary rate of standard wages,
of special payment for Sundays and holidays or
other special occasions, should all be maintained,
and that piece-work is not going to be introduced
merely for the purpose of substituting individual
for that collective bargaining that had previously
obtained. That, in so far as it relates to piece-work,


is the view that I entertain and the view I believe
of organized labor on the other side.

Again, in regard to machinery. I have not found
here on this side any man working eight machines.
I have found just the same as on our side, that certain
machines into which you can put a piece of iron and
it is gobbled up in an automatic way, fed forward
when a piece is cut off and therefore needs no at-
tention I have found that such machines as those
are tended sometimes by a boy, and sometimes half
a dozen by a man with a boy to help him. Exactly
the same thing obtains on our side. And I can see
but very little difference in the use of machinery,
so far as one machine to one man obtains. I have
found, however, a general application of scientific
knowledge. I have found a more general application
of the latest appliances and the best style tools
that can be had; and therefore a considerably larger
product out of the machines than on our side. That
is a matter that we might copy with advantage and
which I mean to tell our people on the other side.

Well, now, coming to the point of the discussion,
Mr. Chairman, and you will pardon me for this long
digression, let me say that I am heartily in favor
of the principle advocated by Mr. Adams, that is,
the principle of reason and enlightenment in in-
dustrial disputes. We have got together now in
organization. Employers are organized, working-
men are organized, and I am inclined to think that
employer and employed are more disposed now to
respect each other than ever they were before.
Strikes, I believe, and lockouts have been necessary


in times gone by and have fulfilled a useful purpose.
They have taught each side to respect the other and
they have impressed the public at large with a sense
of the seriousness of the labor problem. But now
that labor and capital are both organized it seems
to me that there is afforded an opportunity on both
sides to bring the largest amount of common sense,
we will say to develop the conscience both on the
part of the employer and employed, and so bring
the common sense of the employer or employed
organization to deal with unscrupulous individuals
either on one side or the other. On our side of the
water we have found that employer and employed
have met together, and, as the Archbishop pointed
out this afternoon, the very fact of bringing men
face to face with one another tends in a very large
extent to minimize the difficulty between them.
Each recognizes that the other has rights. Each
recognizes that the other has difficulties, and there-
fore in bringing them together a very great deal has
been done to bring reason and justice in and to put
passion and prejudice out, and in that way a very
great deal has been done to raise labor questions
from the low plane of animal and physical contests
on to the higher plane of reason and justice and
common sense. Now here comes in the point of
the paper, as I understand it. Labor is organized
and capital is organized. As has been pointed out
by Mr. Adams, the very fact of one or the other ap-
plying for any public authority or any one else to
intervene between them is taken as an indication
of weakness either on one side or the other. Never-

9 o


theless all the time, as has already been pointed out
by Mr. Adams also, the very fact of their being or-
ganized implies that each is in a position to inflict
a greater amount of injury upon the community
than they had otherwise been able to do. Therefore
that brings in the community as one of the parties
and I should say in some disputes almost the first
party to the dispute, and therefore brings in the
community as a party having the right to intervene
and the right to say that at all events some ma-
chinery shall be set in motion with a view of bringing
the dispute to a termination. Now what is that
to be? I was one of a committee recently on be-
half of the Federation of Labor on the other side
which discussed this matter. We brought in a

Online LibraryNational Conference on Industrial Conciliation (19Industrial conference → online text (page 6 of 25)