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The CHAIRMAN. How much do you estimate for the next year?
Admiral Cowie. The estimate for this year–1913—is to cover eighteen to twenty-four million gallons. The CHAIRMAN. It is estimated that you will use that much in 1913? Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir; and for 1914 it may be 30,000,000.
The CHAIRMAN. I understand. I wanted to get a comparative statement between the two years.
Admiral CowIE. In 1913 the amount will probably run up to 21,000,000 to 24,000,000 gallons instead of 14,000,000 gallons as in 1912, while for 1914, 30,000,000 gallons is a fair estimate.
The CHAIRMAN. You are increasing the number of ships that consume fuel oil ?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Fuel oil is used altogether in the submarines, torpedo boats, and boats of that class?
Admiral CowIE. Yes, sir.
Admiral Cowie. We are now using it in several of the battleships, and some of the new ships will burn oil fuel only.
The CHAIRMAN. Can you insert in the hearings a statement showing the amount of fuel oil and coal and the cost of the fuel oil and coal and the transportation cost?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir; I have that information here for the fiscal years 1911 and 1912.
Fuel oil is bought directly from agencies of the oil companies or transported in the Navy fuel-oil ship Arethusa. No transportation was paid.
Mr. BUTLER. And also the difference in cost to the Government in the use of coal and fuel oil ?
Admiral CowIE. I will be glad to furnish that, after consulting with the Bureau of Steam Engineering.
At the present time a ship can steam three and one-half times as far on coal as she can steam on fuel oil for equal expense of fuel.
Without any sacrifice in other features, guns' protection or cruising radius, oil-burning battleships could be given a speed about 2 knots greater than a coal-burning vessel. In a naval engagement this speed advantage would probably be a decisive factor.
By using fuel oil the raising and maintaining of full speed can be accomplished with comparative ease. It also eliminates the exhaustion of firemen and presence of smoke.
The CHAIRMAN. Admiral, last year we appropriated $75,000 of the amount of $500,000 for coal depots for investigating the coal in Alaska?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Please state to the committee what has been done and what is contemplated or in the course of being consummated.
Admiral CoWIE. There has been a committee in Alaska, under the Navy Department, assisted by the Bureau of Mines, and they have arranged for the transportation of about 885 tons, I think, of coal to the Pacific, so it can be tried out by the ships of the Navy. It is the intention to go ahead and expend this money in connection with the Bering River coal and the Matanuska coal.
The CHAIRMAN. They have not secured Matanuska coal yet?
Admiral CowIE. No, sir. It is, however, very important that we develop the Alaskan coal fields as early as possible to provide suitable coal for Government vessels.
The CHAIRMAN. I notice that you provide here that $75,000 of this appropriation shall be used to continue the investigation and development of the Alaskan coal ?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir; it is for that purpose.
The CHAIRMAN. That is in addition to the $75,000 appropriated last year?
Admiral CoWIE. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. What is the present status of the Matanuska Railway, the line from Controller Bay!
Admiral CowIE. I think they have a line of about 70 miles.
The CHAIRMAN. Has any further development or construction taken place since last year? Admiral CowIE. Not to my knowledge; no, sir.
Mr. ROBERTS. I would like to inquire, Admiral, if you have any information bearing on the statement which I saw in the paper the other day that a quantity of coal had been taken out and brought down to the United States for experimental tests?
Admiral COWIE. It has not been brought down. I think they took out 885 tons. That is to be brought down and tested by the ships in the Pacific fleet.
Mr. ROBERTS. It is going to be tested on the ships, not brought down here for scientific tests?
Admiral Cowie. No, sir; it is to be tested on the ships, at least so I understand.
Mr. ROBERTS. How do they get the coal from the mine to the railroad, seventy-odd miles, where the road has not been completed ?
Admiral COWIE. That is from Matanuska. This coal is from the Bering River field, which is only about 25 miles from the coast of Controller Bay.
Mr. BUTLER. As to the quality of the coal, is it all of the same quality in that part of Alaska ?
Admiral Cowie. I am not sure of that. I can not answer that question until we actually make the test. It has been reported over and over again that the Alaskan coal was as good coal as we have on the east coast, and that is what we are trying to get at now, and I think the sooner we do it the better.
The CHAIRMAN. The Bering River coal as well as the Matanuska coal is regarded as available, and you are now proposing to test that. Are you making efforts to get the Matanuska coal also, so as to make a test?
Admiral CowIE. I so understand; that is the occasion for asking for the $75,000 additional.
Mr. ROBERTS. On page 47 we appropriated last year $75,000 for the survey and investigation by experimental tests of coal in Alaska for use on board ships of the United States Navy. Has that $75,000 been expended ?
Admiral CoWIE. That money will be more than expended, and we want this amount in addition.
Mr. BUTLER. Have we any report on the experiments being made? Admiral Cowie. They have not gotten the coal down yet.
Mr. BUTLER. How soon will we have a report as to the experiments made?
Admiral COWIE. I can not say.
The CHAIRMAN. The Paymaster General has a statement he desires to make with reference to the item on pages 63 and 64.
Admiral COWIE. I wish to say in regard to the dairy which has been established at the Naval Academy that I believe it to be one of the most important things ever done there, and the reports from the Naval Academy show that there is very little intestinal trouble now or complaint among the cadets since they have started on the use of this milk from the dairy.
Mr. BUTLER. Is the Government going into farming at the Naval Academy?
Admiral CoWIE. Yes, sir; for dairy purposes, and they want more ground. When the congressional board visited the Naval Academy last year–I do not know whether any Members are here now—they were very much impressed and were desirous of securing this farm at once.
Mr. BUTLER. Is it proposed to buy a farm to furnish milk to the Naval Academy?
Admiral Cowie. For the cadets.
Admiral CoWIE. I think when the Superintendent of the Naval Academy comes before the committee he can explain that more in detail. I just wanted to speak of it because I believe it is an excellent thing. I was on duty at the academy a long time and can appreciate how advantageous it would be should the extra land be provided.
Mr. BUTLER. For us to furnish the milk to the academy?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir. There has been practically no trouble down there since the dairy was established. They have a chart show
ing the degree of typhoid and intestinal troubles, which was due, as they thought, to impure milk.
The CHAIRMAN. I have received information that up to the present time $40,000 has been taken out of the stores fund at the Naval Academy and has been put into what is called the dairy fund.
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. And they now have two silos with a capacity of 200,000 tons, and they have about 120 cows which they are now milking!
Admiral CowIE. Yes, sir; they have about 100 cows and three 200-ton silos.
Mr. BUTLER. Where was the authority for this?
The CHAIRMAN. I am not prepared to answer that question. I am just giving you the information I have received. It is in the report of the Secretary of the Navy, I believe.
Admiral COWIE. It was started from the midshipmen's store account. We first advanced $25,000, then $10,000, and later $5,000 more, and carried it as the dairy account in the midshipmen's store
count. That is the way the whole thing was started. That fund comes under the Bureau of Supplies and Accounts, and they came to me from the Naval Academy and I authorized them first to take $25,000 and finally extended it to $40,000. They have now enough cows to supply plenty of milk.
Mr. BUTLER. This money was taken from the general store account?
Admiral COWIE. From the midshipmen's store account. This fund is derived from the profits of the midshipmen's store. The Board of Visitors to the Naval Academy last year felt that they should have the dairy in a different place from where it is located now, and that is one reason for this request.
Mr. BUTLER. Instead of purchasing the milk out of the store account belonging to the cadets, the money was used in the way you have stated ?
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir.
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir; the midshipmen's mess is charged, however, with the milk at a certain rate below the market rate, my intention being to eventually return the money used from the midshipmen's store fund by charging a small profit.
The CHAIRMAN. Can you tell us what land is contemplated to be purchased ?
Admiral Cowie. I do not know.
Mr. BUTLER. It was contemplated that a certain amount of the general account be used for the purchase of milk?
Admiral COWIE. No, sir; there is at the academy the midshipmen's store, for which a certain amount was authorized at one time. This was finally turned into the Treasury and the profits that had accrued to this store were used to run the store. It ran up to such an amount that they felt they could spare $25,000 to establish this dairy, providing it was returned by paying a nominal sum for the milk.
Mr. BUTLER. If this appropriation should be made, then you propose to return this money to the account?
Admiral COWIE. To what account?
Mr. BUTLER. It is not proposed to take any part of this proposed appropriation here and return it to the midshipmen's store account?
Admiral Cowie. No, sir. This appropriation is required for land and for moving buildings and erecting new ones for the dairy.
Mr. TRIBBLE. There were dairymen and farmers who furnished this milk to the academy, I suppose ?
Admiral CowIE. Yes, sir.
Mr. TRIBBLE. Now, the Government proposes to go into competition with the dairymen and farmers ?
Admiral Cowie. No, sir. The cows have been purchased from the midshipmen's store fund. They had tuberculosis and all kinds of trouble, and that is what prompted the authorities to take this action, as it was believed the milk was the cause of many cases of typhoid.
The CHAIRMAN. Did it not follow a serious outbreak of typhoid fever which was traced to the milk which they purchased ?
Admiral Cowie. Yes, sir. They now have a chart, and there has been no typhoid there for some time, while two years ago there was, I understand, over 200 cases of intestinal trouble.
Mr. ROBERTS. My understanding is that in Maryland they do not have supervision and inspection of the herds for tuberculosis such as exists in some States and the District of Columbia ?
Admiral CoWIE. The naval authorities very often had the Agricultural Department send down an expert to look over the cows.
Mr. ROBERTS. There is no method in Maryland of keeping the herds free of tuberculosis?
Admiral CoWIE. I think there is some regulation, but it is not very strictly carried out.
Mr. 'WITHERSPOON. What is the difference in cost between the Government furnishing its own milk and butter and buying those articles ?
Admiral CoWIE. I can not tell you.
Admiral CoWIE. No, sir. The Government, however, does not buy this milk. It is bought and paid for out of the midshipmen's mess.
Mr. WITHERSPOON. The Government pays the midshipmen, and so it comes out of the people after all. Which is the less expensive way to do it?
Admiral CoWIE. I am not really prepared to state, but I could secure that information from the Naval Academy.
The CHAIRMAN. Please insert in the hearings a statement showing the comparative cost before this purchase was made and since this new method of having a dairy was inaugurated.
Admiral COWIE. Yes, sir. The cost of feeding and handling this herd per day is $67.26, divided as follows: Hay...
9. 34 Bedding.
3. 15 Labor..
23.00 This cost is constant.
The yield of milk varies, depending upon the date of freshening. During the month of October the average yield of the herd was 150 gallons per day, making the cost 44 cents. For the month of November the average yield was 190 gallons, making the cost per gallon 36 cents. For the month of December the yield to date is 250 gallons, making an average cost of 27 cents per gallon. The milk is sold by the store at 40 cents per gallon.