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COMMITTEE ON MILITARY AFFAIRS
JOHN J. McSWAIN, South Carolina, Chairman LISTER HILL, Alabama
W. FRANK JAMES, Michigan JAMES M. FITZPATRICK, New York HARRY C. RANSLEY, Pennsylvania JED JOHNSON, Oklahoma
THOMAS C. COCHRAN, Pennsylvania NUMA F, MONTET, Louisiana
EDWARD W. GOSS, Connecticut ANDREW J. MAY, Kentucky
VINCENT CARTER, Wyoming R. EWING THOMASON, Texas
WALTER G. ANDREWS, New York WILLIAM N. ROGERS, New Hampshire THEODORE CHRISTIANSON, Minnesota THOMAS C. COFFIN, Idaho
DONALD H. MCLEAN, New Jersey
PAUL J. KVALE, Minnesota
J. B. KNIGHT, Clerk
W. L. Willkie, president of the Commonwealth & Southern Corpor-
Preston S. Arkwright, president of the Georgia Power Co.------
Hon. Riley J. Wilson, a Representative from Louisiana------
Judson King, director of National Popular Government League.
TUESDAY, APRIL 11, 1933
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D.C. The committee met at 2 o'clock p.m., Hon. John J. McSwain (chairman) presiding.
The CHAIRMAN. A quorum being present for the purpose of conducting a hearing, under the rules of the committee, the committee will come to order for the consideration in open hearings of H.R. 4859, a bill to provide for the common defense; to aid interstate commerce by navigation; to provide flood control; to promote the general welfare by creating the Tennessee Valley Authority; to operate the Muscle Shoals properties, and to encourage agricultural, industrial, and economic development.
We have with us the Hon. John E. Rankin, a Representative from the State of Mississippi. We should be glad, indeed, to have a statement from him.
STATEMENT OF HON. JOHN E. RANKIN, A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI
Mr. Rankin. Mr. Chairman, I first wish to thank the chairman for giving me this opportunity of appearing before your committee in what I trust is the last stage of a battle that has covered a long stretch of years. I only regret that my distinguished friend and former colleague, Hon. Percy E. Quin, the former chairman of this committee, who spent so much of his valuable time and so many hours of hard labor and probably hastened his death struggling with this project, cannot be here in this hour of the fruition of his dream.
I live closer to Muscle Shoals than any other man in either House of Congress with the exception of the distinguished gentleman from Tennessee, Mr. Turner, and the distinguished gentleman from Alabama, Mr. Almon. Therefore, my interest is not only nationial, but it is local and, from the standpoint of a citizen of that country, it is personal.
I have often called attention to the fact that the average American, and even the average Member of Congress, had never fully appreciated the capacity of Muscle Shoals. I made the statement some time ago that the power that can be generated at Muscle Shoals now exceeds the physical strength of all the slaves freed by the Civil War. Senator Norris challenged that statement once. I called his attention to the fact that it was possible, even without the Cove Creek Dam, to generate 300,000 horsepower of electric energy. One horsepower is equal to the physical strength of 10 able-bodied men. That would equal the strength of 3,000,000 men. There were only