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The Record and guide: v. 37, no. 931: January 16, 1886

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January IG, 1886 The Record and Guid e. ^s THE RECORD AND GUIDE, Published every Saturday. 1©1 Broad-^av, IST. If. Our Teleplioue Call Is JOHN 370. TERMS: O^E YEAR, in adrance, SIX DOLLARS. Cominiuiications sbould be addressed to C. W. SWEET, 191 Broadway. J. T. LINDSEY, Business Manager. Vol. XXXVII. JANUARY 16, 1886. No. 931 Co^yies of ihe semi-annual Index of the Conveyances and Pro- j'ecled Buildings in New Yoric and Kings Counties, for the last six months of 1885, will be delivered to all subseribers of The Recobd AND Guide toith this issue. Jt is xjrepared ivith the usual care, and tvill he furnished on the usual terms ; that is, free to all on the sub- seription list of the paper. Binders may he secured at this office for one dollar. The business situation is not as bright as it was during October and November last. Tlie January boom, so far, has not come to time. Stocks look weak. General business is hardly so promising as it was. All the world is suffering from depressed markets, and the I'eaction upon us does not favor higher prices. Our agricultural products are sinking to lower quotations. Outside of real estate circles the prospect is not very reassuring. But, aa will be seen by our Real Estate Gossip, everything promises a big business move¬ ment in this city during the coming spring. The Evening Post publishes a document, issued by some German doctrinaires, in which it is maintained that low prices are a benefit to mankind, and that, hence, if there is a change in the unit of value, by which that becomes scarce and dear, the world ia conse¬ quently benefited. The debtor class throughout the commercial world, who owe, it is said, iu national and individual obligations, some $34,000,000,000, will not be likely to give their assent to any proposition which would add twenty or thirty per cent, to their indebtedness. An addition to the purchasing power of money would inevitably lead to the universal repudiation of all debts. Then the experience oE mankind is that a period of advancing prices are years of great prosperity, and that when prices are declining acute suffering is experienced by all except those who have ready money in hand. Wherever on earth low prices prevail, there misery .makes its home; while high prices accompany national prosperity. Compare China, India, South America, the Asiatic countries, where the returns for labor are on a low scale, with more prosperous Europe and the United States, where every¬ thing bought and sold brings good prices, and there can be no doubt which is preferable. Our hard times are always when the markets show a lowering tendency, for then no one cares to produce. The better times we are experiencing is because bonds, stocks, iron, etc., are rising in value, and hence there is a stimulus to industries of all kinds. It is to be hoped that no one interested in property in the vicinity of the Harlem River will be lulled to repose by the an¬ nouncement that a bill has been introduced in Congress ostensibly to push forward the work of improving that channel. Bills for this purpose have become, in the joker's vernacular, chestnuts; and the new bill will require considerable examination, from all points of view, before it can be pronounced even a sound chestnut. It will be observed ihat the bill introduced in the Souse of Repre¬ sentatives under the call of the States, last Monday, by Mr. Johnson, was " by request." This may mean that the gentleman does not mean to champion the measure, nor to work very assiduously for its success. In that case, or in any case, it will be well for those who requested the introduction of the bill to make the further request that it shall be pressed with the utmost vigor until it shall be made a law. Indeed it would be well enough to supplement the request with a demand, and to send a committee to "Washington to see that the matter be not neglected. The time has clearly come when the Indian reservations should be opened for settlement, and the very best plan for doing so is that just suggested by Lieutenant-General Sheridan. It seems thait the Indian reservations include about 200,000 square miles. Were every Indian family to be given 320 acres of land it would take up about 26,000 square mites, leaving over 170,000 square miles which the Govei-nment could dispose of to actual white settlers. This land General Sheridan proposes the Government should pay for, at the rate of |1.85 an acre. If bonds are issued to take up these lands, the annual interest would be $4,480,000, which sum, General Sher¬ idan proposes, should be kept for the benefit of the Indians to help them in stocking their farms and the like. Some of these reserva¬ tion lands are in distant regions, and would not be immediately available for white settlers, but probably 1.30,000, square miles, which includes all of this so-called Indian Territory, would at once come into the market^ and if it did so would be a vast benefit to our railway system. It will be a great credit to the Democratic party if it should settle this Indian question, equitably. The record of previous administrations in this matter, is simply scandalous. If the liquor dealers of the State of New York wish to escape the passage of local-option laws permitting localities to prohibit the sale of strong drink, they would do well to get the Legislature now in session to pass a good stiff high-license law. These have worked well in Chicago and other cities in the West, in reducing the number of saloons and abating the more grievous scandals of the liquor traffic while they have added handsomely to the revenues of the munici¬ palities in which they were enforced. This local-option movement is becommg surprisingly popular in the South and West. No liquor can be legally sold in 115 counties in Georgia out of the 135 that there are in the State, Forty thousand prohibition votes have been cast in Kentucky, the very home and headquarters for old Bourbon, and in many counties in that State not a drop of liquor can be pur¬ chased. The next election will see a powerful prohibition senti¬ ment in every State in the Union. Liquor selling is now unchecked in this State, and it contributes little or nothing to relieve the burdens of municipal taxation which is now borne exclusively by real estate. The liquor interest ought to, at least, contribute $3,000,000 annually to our city treasury. The Battle of the Standards. From this 4ime forth the press and our national Congress will have a good deal to say about mono-metallism, bi-metallism and the coinage of the silver dollars in this country. Not a little heat has been developed so far in the discussion, and we may expect the contest to rage until it is finally settled by a vote in both houaes of Congress. As a general thing the opponents of tha silver coinage are gold mono-metallists, while those who advocate the minting of $2,000,000 a month are bi-metallists. That ia, they wish the nation to use both of the precious metals in measuring prices. But curiously enough there have been recently developed silver mono-metallists, a school which wishes to get rid of gold altogether. Mr. John Thompson, of the Chase National Bank, is an advocate of an exclusive silver currency, and th© Sun newspaper has recently taken the same ground. The Sun argues that were we to get rid of our store of gold, over $600,000,000, it would reduce the value of the yellow metal throughout the commercial world' while, if, at the same time, we made silver our exclusive metallic currency, it would create such a large demand for it that its old value would be- restored, thus practicailly re-establishing bi-metal¬ lism. In this connection it will be remembered that when Ger¬ many and other States in Europe recognized silver, it created so great a demand for the white metal that it made no difference if England maintained au exclusively gold currency. The commerce of the world could afford for one nation to use gold alone, provided tho bulk of the other nations used silver. Hence, if so radical a change aa the Sun suggests could be effected, and the United States should use silver exclusively, it is not impossible that the relative value of the two metals would swing back to the old ratio—that of Europe and the East Indies, of 15% ounces of the white metal becoming the equivalent of one ounce of the yellow metal. But has the Sun considered what a convulsion it would make to get rid of over $600,000,000 of gold. It would cause a fearful con¬ traction, and ruin every business man in the country. Such a thing aa the gradual demonetization of gold ia impracticable. It would have to be affected at once to the ruin of every vital interest in the country. The United States had better continue bi-metallic. We produce as much of the precious metals as all the rest of the world com¬ bined. Our European customers deal exclusively in gold, while the people we trade with in China, Asia, Japan, Mexico, and South and Central America use silver exclusively. Our continent is midway between the gold-using and silver-using nations. Hence we should niaintatn our hold on both metals, and endeavor to give them some fixed value. There is much to be said in favor of the unlimited coinage of silver. The silver coinage las? really restricts the amount to be minted. Any one can take gold bullion to the mint and have it turned into coin, no matter how large the amount. But under our present silver coinage law,; the authorities must coin $2,000,000 a month; but cannot exceed $t,000,000 a month. Were this coina»^e of silver as free as gold, many more dollars would doubtless be coined; but tbis would do us no harm, as we as yet haveless than four dollaria per capita agaihst tHree and four times that amount