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Real Estate Record
AND BUILDERS' GUIDE.
NEW YORK, SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 12, 1881.
Published Weekly by
ONE YEAR, in advance.. ..SIO.OO.
Communications should be addressed to
C. W. SWEET,
No. 137 Broadway
SIX GIGANTIC ENTERPEISES.
How few Americans realize the maEtnitade
of the enterprises now under way on the
North American continent. Six different
trans-contiuental lines, having in view the
uniting of the Atlantic with the Pacific
Ocean, are now either beiog perfected or are
under way. The construction of any one of
these great lines will be a feat of which any
nation might be proud ; but six of them at
one time, is literally unexampled in the
history of the world. The greatest memorials
of the Roman Empire which have come
down to us, are the magnificent roads, many
of which have survived to this day the fall
of the great Empire, But how poor a piece
of work after all was a Roman road, com¬
pared with a double track railway line with
its steel rails, bridges, culverts aud costly
palace cars and innumerable freight cars.
Yet it is more than probable that dating
back from the twentieth century fifty years,
the United States alone will show more
steam roads than were constructed of Roman
roads throughout the world during all the
centuries when that power was supreme.
Look at the list.
First, there is the Canada Pacific, which is
intended to traverse the ice bound region to
the north of us, so as to connect the Domin¬
ion with the British possession on the Pacific
Next, there is the Northern Pacific, which
is being pushed with great energy and which
will be completed before the close of 1883.
Then comes the Union Pacific, the pioneer
of them all, which is perfecting its system of
roads, reaching north and south to mineral
regions, coal lands and, agricultural and
grazing districts. The Union Pacific will
soon have 3,000 miles of roads tributary to it.
The Central Pacific is destined to become a
part of a road under one management, ex¬
tending from New York to San Francisco.
Then, fourthly, there' is the Southern
Pacific, the news of the completion of which
we wiU soon hear. This road will have its
eastern terminus at Ne Alport News and Nor¬
folk, and will be connected in time with
several ports on the Pacific besides San
Francisco. Numberless connecting roads
will soon be under way to add to the volume
of the business of ths Southern Pacific.
Then comes the extension of the South-
"western system of roads to the City of
Mexico, which will be followed almost
immediately by the construction of a line to
some point on the Gulf of California or the
Pacific Ocean, probably Guayumas.
And lastly there is the Panama Canal, the
capital for which has been subscribed.
It is safe to say that something like
$1,000,000,000 will be spent before these roads
and their branches will have been completed,
and when we recall the fact that they are aU
now under way, with abundance of money
back of each scheme, we may realize first,
the immense impetus this is giving to all
kinds of business, and,second, theppril which
we run in using up money so rapidly for
Great Britain comprises but a small portion
of the earth's surface, and that densley popu¬
lated. North America is no inconsiderable
part of the whole surface of the globe, thinly
populated. The rapid building of railroads
in wealthy and overpopulated Great Britain,
brought about at least five commercial
crisises. We have had two commercial
panics, one in '57, the other in '73, due in
great part to the overbuilding of railroads.
Who dare say that we will not pass through
several revulsions before we have completed
the gigantic works we have undertaken.
Let us make money while we may. This
immense expenditure for railroad building
will keep our people employed at remuner¬
ative wages for several years to come. But
about the time that payday arrives, woe to
those who are in debt or who have ready
money in institutions that are in any way
passes, and $600,000,000 of investments will
be set free to seek more lucrative employ¬
ment than in the purchasing of Government
ZI4 per cent, bonds. We may see prices that
will make one dizzy, if a speculative funding
bill should pass. But we do not advise any
one to buy, except indeed real estate, which
is a purchase whether stocks go up or stocks
WHAT WE MAY EXPECT.
All the ]3rivate advices from Washington
agree in saying that a funding bill will
certainly he passed before the 4th of March.
Our informants have seen letters from
prominent leaders of the Senate and House,
of both parties, and they all agree in predict¬
ing the passage of a satisfactory biU.
If this is so, we may look out for another
very active market and rising quotations in
securities. This will be more especially the
case if the provision in the funding bill is
retained, of issuing Treasury notes bearing 3
per cent.finterest and of smalldenominations.
These are proposed to give the poor a chance
to invest in those parts of the country where
there are no savings banks. But its real
effect will be to set free the hoards of gold,
silver and legal tender paper which are now
put away in old stockings by poor and ignor¬
ant people all over the country.
The state of the exchanges shows that no
gold can be shipped hitherward for the
present; but the exports are very heavy,
greater than they were this time last year,
while the imports are much less. This, if
continued, must lead to the renewal of the
importation of gold. But to create a' 'boom"
this will not be necessary if the funding bill
POSITION OP THE WESTERN UNION.
People who are familiar with the telegraph
system of the country, say there will be no
difiiculty in Western Union earning 8 per
cent, on its capital stock of $80,000,000. This
can be done without increasing the tolls,
while extra facilities can be given the press
and the various Exchanges. It is clearly the
policy of Western Union not to antagonize
the public. The latter is just now in an
angry mood, but this feeling will in time die
out. It is understood that General Eckert is
about to offer the use of his idle wires, of
which he has an abundance, at very reason¬
able terms, to the members of the Cotton
Provision, Grain and Stock Exchanges.
This in the hope that it wiU put an end to
schemes for starting new companies.
In any event it will be impossible to or¬
ganize an opposition to the Western Union
that will be efficient, in less than two years.
Congress cannot act until the year 1882 and in
the meantime the Western Union people will
have the entire field to themselves. A new
telegraph company starts in under great
difficulties. Telegraphing is a kind of retail
business, the plant of which does not cost so
much as the machinery for carrying it on.
It is easy enough to put up poles and wires,
but to open offices and train operators is a
far more difficult task. Then, a new com¬
pany will be cut off from the markets of the
world. The Western Union will not only
have a monopoly of the existing cables, but
Jay Gould has announced to the world,
through an interviewer, that he expects to
have cable communication with South
America, the Continent, with the West India
Islands and even with Russia by way of
Alaska and Kamtschatka. A telegraph com¬
pany confined to internal communication,
cut off from cables, would not amount to
There is a great deal of folly and nonsense
in the newspapers as to what the new com¬
panies can do. The fate of the twenty odd
organizations swallowed up by Western
Union, tells the story of what we may expect
should a new company be organized. There
is no such thing as competing in telegraph¬
ing or raibroading. Ihe competing com¬
panies are always bought up and the unfor¬
tunate public pockets the loss of capital.
There is but one solution of the problem and
that is, the purchase of the lines by the
Government, Then, and not until then,