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a pound, and it is only a fair tariff as compared with the duty on other products. Three dollars and fifty cents would only be an ordinary and fair price for cod. That amounts, I think, to only about 13 per cent.

Q. That is "a tariff revenue only?"—A. A tariff for revenue only; that would perhaps be as high a duty as would be judicious to place upon it.


Q. Do you know anything that our fishermen desire of Canada?-A. No, sir. They have only just one thing that is of any sort of value to us, and you have heard what that is the privilege of going in there and of perhaps purchasing some little thing that they may be out of, as a matter of convenience; but that is a trivial matter. So far as transportation is concerned, I think we have in some cases availed ourselves of the privilege of transporting home the catch of mackerel.

Q. Through Canada?-A. Yes; to Boston. But, so far as the inshore fishery is concerned, it is not worth any contention. You will find that when Mr. Johnston was Canadian secretary of marine he stated that the shore fishermen who are pursuing this inshore fishery, as a class of men, are constantly poor and are really paupers; their Government is continually compelled to help them. He says they spend their lives in mending old nets and dogging around the shores without accomplishing anything.


Q. Do you know the fact that it is shown by the statistics that during the twelve years of the treaty the average number of our vessels going within the 3-mile limit was 93 a year?-A. I have not examined that.

Q. Do you know that the statistics show that the actual cost of all the mackerel taken within the 3-mile shore line was double the price obtained for them?—A. I should judge it would be, from what experience we have had in the ports on the cape here; I should think it would cost all of that.


Q. It strikes me that you told me at Washington-can you tell me now?-about the average pay that fishermen all through this section get for a year's fishing?—A. No. I think likely it was Mr. Babson gave you that.


By Senator EDMUNDS:

Q. Has any vessel from this district been interfered with?-A. I think Captain Kemp's is the only case. In fact, they have had very little chance to interfere with our vessels, because they have been kept away. This inshore fishery, you perfectly understand, is of advantage to the mackerel catchers only, and the mackerel interest is the smaller interest of the two. So that with our fishermen that privilege is perfectly valueless. We have never sent a vessel to fish inshore. During the treaty we had on an average about 10 codfish vessels that fished those British waters, but just out of sight of land.

Q. Mackerel vessels go from this port, do they not?-A. We have 18 mackerel vessels; 9 of them, on account of the scarcity of mackerel on our own coast this year, have gone there, and one of them made a full trip, but only one. We have averaged about 1 vessel a year.


After the adjournment of the subcommittee at Provincetown on October 1, 1886, Otis M. Knowles, agent of the Union Fish Company, located at Provincetown, made the following statement, not under oath, which was ordered to be embodied in the testimony:

That his company is the owner of several mackerel fishermen; that during all the time of their ownership none of them have ever taken a mackerel within the 3-mile shore line of Canada; that in 1884 the fishing schooner Emma P. Curtis, Captain Rich, commanding, made a nine weeks' trip in the Bay of St. Lawrence, fishing outside the 3-mile shore line, and caught 125 barrels of mackerel, on which she stocked $916.79; that during the same time and the same length of time the schooner Alice captured on the American shore 956 barrels, on which she stocked $6,000; that also during the same time and the same length of time the schooner Stowell Sherman captured 700 barrels on the American shore, stocking $5,000.


S. S. SWIFT also appeared under the same circumstances and made the following statement:

Is a dealer in fish and oils; is owner of fishing vessels at Provincetown, Mass., and is largely interested in the following-named vessels:

Cost of schooner Annie R. Kemp..
Cost of schooner F. Woodruff.
Cost of schooner Ellen A. Swift
Cost of schooner Willie L. Swift.
Cost of schooner Leon S. Swift.
Cost of schooner Ethel Swift.
Cost of schooner Nellie Swift.

Cost of fish stores, flake yards, fish butts, wharf, etc., about

$14,892. 84 12, 591. 70

12, 089. 70

11, 426. 46

12, 664. 15

13, 742.88

11, 116. 91 17,000.00

105, 524.64

The expense to run his business was about $8,000 per year. As an illustration of the profits of the business, Mr. Swift selected the schooner Nellie Swift, and submitted tables for the years 1883, 1884, 1885, and 1886, as follows:

Whole stock

Schooner Nellie Swift, voyage 1883; number quintals, 2,829.

$7, 311.04

2,699. 27

[blocks in formation]

Vessel's bills, $868.86; interest, $667.01; insurance, $889.35..


Taxes and depreciation not considered at all.

Schooner Nellie Swift, 1884; number quintals, 2,554.


Great generals

One-eighth making fish.

Amount oil added ...

One-fourth vessel's part......

4,611, 77 576.47

4, 035.30 725.20

4, 760.50 1, 190. 12

3,570.38 934.65

2,635.73 3,810. 42

1, 174. 69

1, 190. 12


1,244. 37

2,425. 22

1, 180. 85

$4,320. 13



260. 13

1,820. 90 387.59



1,656. 37

Small generals

Crew wages.


Vessel one fourth part

Loss on making fish

Vessel's bills, $1,189.24; interest, $667.01; insurance, $889.35 ...

[blocks in formation]



3,903. 25

2, 949. 17

552. 12





$5,880.00 1, 768. 18

4, 111. 82 513.97

3, 597.85 348.75

3, 946. 60 986. 65

2,959.95 934. 65





Vessel's part . . .


Difference one-eighth and one-fourteenth


1,080. 62

Vessel's bills, $1,100; interest, $667.01; insurance, $889.35....

[blocks in formation]


Vessel's one-fourth part..
Difference one-eighth and one-fourteenth making fish.

[blocks in formation]

$1,305. 26 167.72

1, 472.98 2, 745.60

1, 272.62


BOSTON, MASS., October 2, 1886.

WILLIAM F. JONES, sworn and examined.

By Senator EDMUNDS:

Q. What is your age?-A. Forty-four years.

Q. You reside in Boston?-A. I reside in Boston.

Q. What is your occupation?-A. I am a member of the firm of T. J. Jones & Co., commission merchants, dealing mainly in fish.

Q. How long have you been in the fish business?-A. I began in 1861, but was out of it for a time, being in the Army during part of the war; then I have been in it since 1864 continuously.

Q. Do you fit out vessels?-A. No, sir. mostly from the British Provinces, though we deal to some extent in American fish. We are commission merchants, selling fish Q. Where do your principals mainly reside in the British Provinces?-A. In Nova Scotia, principally.

Q. In what kinds of fish do you deal?-A. All kinds.

Q. What is the largest part?-A. Mackerel, codfish, and herring.

Q. Fresh, or salt, or both?-A. Salted mainly; a little in fresh fish, but not very much.


Q. What was the apparent effect, on the fishery trade that you were engaged in, of the treaty of 1870-71, when the laws had been passed to put it into effect, which, I believe, was about 1873; was it not?-A. It began July 1, 1873. You mean if there was any change at that time?

Senator EDMUNDS. Yes.

A. I am not aware that there was very much, except that certain of the cheaper grades of fish could not afford to pay the specific duty. It does not make ence to my firm whether there is a duty on fish or not, provided trade is good and fish are bringing good prices. any differ

Q. I am not speaking of its effect on your business, as to personal profits, but as affecting the quantity sold, the prices obtained, and so on.-A. The larger prices for fish were obtained about the close of the war, during the inflated period, when all kinds of goods brought high prices. The prices of mackerel, particularly, change greatly from one year to another, without reference to the duty. For instance, the price this year has been double that of last year.

Q. But you did not observe on the occasion of the free fish coming in in force that the prices fell?-A. They fell just before that time, and reaction came in 1871-72. Prices had been exceedingly high up to that time-too high; but a reaction came, and there was a very large decline, and very heavy losses were sustained both in the winters of 1871-72, and 1872-73, just before this treaty came into operation. So that I don't think that any difference would have been shown by the introduction of fish free. In fact, I remember particularly the testimony before the Halifax Commission, wherein it was said by many Nova Scotians and the fishermen of the Provinces down there that to them it was a very good thing to have a duty, because they got so much better prices when fish were dutiable than they did during the years 1871 and 1872, when fish were free. That was simply due to the natural operation of the courses or trade; but they thought they had better have duty on because they got so much better returns from their fish during that time. That, however, was the inflated period during the war and just afterwards, when prices of all kinds were exalted.

Q. That, I suppose, is not your opinion?-A. No; it had Q. That was a delusion?-Å. Take this year and last year. kinds of fish were exceedingly low, and there was a surplus. except codfish is very scarce, and the prices of everything

nothing to do with it.
Last year prices of all
This year everything
have advanced a great


deal. In many things we are obliged to-day to go to Halifax or St. John, and to pay whatever prices they choose to ask.

Q. For what kind of fish?-A. For herring, mackerel, salmon, and for shad. However, the capture of shad does not amount to much this year. In fact, the capture of pickle fish of any kind this year is the smallest ever known.

Q. That is true of salmon?-A. That is true of salmon. Mackerel which last year brought $5 at this time are worth $10.

Q. Then how is it that the fishermen think that they are having a hard time?-A. I don't know. I think the figures prove that the fishermen are not injured by duty on fish, because during the

By Senator FRYE:

Q. By the freedom from duty you mean?-A. Yes, sir. The fishermen are not injured by the freedom from duty, because during the thirty-one years before 1885 the American fishermen made all their profit. I have jotted down a few figures

By Senator EDMUNDS:

Q. Wait a moment. I want to ask you one or two more questions. I do not think you quite understood, or have not answered my last question. You say that the prices of fish, they being scarce, are higher this year than last?-A. Yes, sir. That has been because there have been fewer fish caught.


Q. Have the fishermen been making more profit this year than last?-A. No. A few of them have done fairly well, but the greater part of them have made very heavy losses, that is, in the mackerel fishing. In the cod fishery the catch has been large, and it remains to be proved what the result will be. My own opinion is that, all kinds of pickle fish being scarce, the consumption of codfish will be increased, and there is a hope, which there was not a month or two ago, that they may come out and make both ends meet.

Q. But at this moment the fishermen's operations for this year have not been fortunate?-A. Very unsuccessful as a whole. Most of the mackerel fleet will lose a great deal of money; it won't begin to pay; some of them have got nothing. Q. Although the prices have risen?-A. Yes, sir.


Senator EDMUNDS. Now you can go on and give the figures you spoke of a moment ago.

The WITNESS. The United States census for 1880 gives the capital invested in the New England fisheries at $19,937,607; the product was $14,270,293. I deduct 10 per cent for the expense of doing the business; that is an ordinary allowance in general business; that leaves $12,843,264. Take 40 per cent for the share of the vessels; that is the general settlement for the shares of vessels. That 40 per cent would be $5,137,305, or nearly 26 per cent dividend on the investment in the New England fisheries. That is from the last census report I have seen, for 1880. But the years 1881, 1882, and 1883 were better years. There were larger profits made, and the business will probably show better results.

Q. Why do you stop at 1883? Why not bring your statement down to this time?— A. Because in 1884 there was an excessive catch of mackerel, the largest catch ever known, and that was a poor year, owing to the large catch.

Q. How much did they make that year?—A. I don't think they made anything that year.

Q. How much did they make in 1885?-A. I don't know; there has never been any statement made.

Q. Do you mean to say that you can get figures for 1883, and can not for 1884?—A. I have given you figures for 1880, and I say those are the last figures I have seen.

Q. You spoke of 1882 and 1883.-A. I say I know that they were better years in the fish business, but I can not give you the figures. I merely say, in giving you the result for 1880, that $5,137,305 would amount to a dividend of about 26 per cent on all the capital invested in the New England fisheries, and that was considered a fair year. But the years 1881, 1882, and 1883 were better years; prices were higher and more profits were made.

Q. The figures you have given us for 1880 were, after all, probably really those for 1879?-A. No; I got them from the census report for 1880.

Q. But the census was taken in June, 1880, and it must have been taken on the product of 1879.-A. If that is so, that makes it stronger, for 1879 was a poor year. I had taken it to be 1880.

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