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5. Frogs and Switches.
7. All Life-Saving Appliances, especially Footguards for Frogs and Switches. Bring sample.
On motion of Mr. Wright, of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railway, a vote of thanks was given the proprietors of the Matteson House for favors shown the Association, and to Mr. T. J. Brush for complimentary tickets to the Exposition.
On motion of Mr. Cox, of the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Omaha Railway, a vote of thanks was given the management of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad, for courtesies shown the Association.
The convention adjourned at 4:30 P.M., to meet in St. Paul on the second Wednesday of September, 1883.
THE PRESIDENT: Gentlemen, you have heard the minutes of the meeting in Chicago; what will you do with them? If there is no objection, they will stand accepted. The minutes are approved
The first business in order would be the enrollment of new members, but as the By-Laws were given into the hands of the Committee for revision, it will be necessary to call. upon
that Committee for a report, in order that we may be able to get them back into the hands of the Association, so that they may be read in order that members may know what they are doing.
MR. McQuiston: Mr. President, as Chairman of that Committee, I have the honor to tender to the Association our report.
The report was read by the Secretary, as follows:
Your Committee to whom was referred the revision of the Constitution and By-Laws, respectfully report, that after a consideration of the same, they recommend their adoption as they now stand.
J. C. McQuiston,
W. H. McCLINTOCK. THE PRESIDENT: Gentlemen, you have heard the report of the Committee, what will you do with it?
MR. Moll suggested that there were quite a number of members now present who had not heard the By-Laws read, and it would be proper that they be read at this time.
After the reading of the By-laws by the Secretary, Mr. Wright moved that they be 'adopted and the Committee discharged. Carried.
MR. SWINNEY: I would suggest that the roll be called, that we may see what members are present.
Upon the roll being called by the Secretary, the following members answered to their names:
Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad.
THE PRESIDENT: The enrollment of new members will be in order.
The following new members paid their dues and were admitted as members of the Association:
THE PRESIDENT: A gentleman with whom I am acquainted, Mr. George M. Williams, of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad, could not be here, and is desirous of becoming a member of the Association; can he do so by recommendation ?
MR. MCQUISTON: I think that any roadmaster in good standing, who sends in his application, and who is known to any of the
members, should be adınitted, and I will make a motion that any roadmaster in good standing, who sends his application to any regular meeting of this Association, may become a member of it by a vote of the members present, provided that he is recommended by a member present.
The motion prevailed, and Mr. Williams was declared a member.
THE PRESIDENT, Mr. I. Burnett, then delivered the following address:
GENTLEMEN OF THE CONVENTION,—It being one of the first duties of railroad men to be on time, I will be allowed to congratulate you upon your promptness to-day. Our second meeting I have regarded as more of an experiment than the first. To the first some may have come prompted by curiosity; those who come to the second are the kind that will stick together. They are the ones who mean business, and that is the only kind of mean business such men ever get into. It is well, too, that we do meet together. Solomon - I think it was Solomon - said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” He practiced as he preached, for he was married, if history be true, to three hundred women. Now, with all due respect to Solomon, I am glad the said gentleman does not belong to this Association. If he did, and brought his fam. ily, we would have to charter a couple of excursion trains and several pri. vate detectives to watch the gray-headed members. No, it's not good for man to be alone. The recognition of this fact has permeated and influ. enced all grades of society and classes of men. Lawyers, farmers, mer. chants, doctors, editors have long since realized that they owed it to them. selves, as men desirous of improving and advancing in their respective callings, to band together in societies. By so doing, the best thoughts, the richest experience and the most worthy theories of each individual become the common property of all. New light is cast upon a dark problem that has haunted the mind of an individual for years. It is solved at once. He in turn may be able to solve some enigma that has worried'his benefactor. So, by mutual interchange of thought, great and widespread good is obtained. Last, though not least, in glancing at the advantages of such societies, we must not forget the social and friendly ties that are thereby engendered and strengthened year by year. Not only is this pleasant and profitable to us, but it likewise does its share in binding together in one vast family the great brotherhood of humanity. Especially is this true of ourselves. Men in other pursuits and professions meet often to exchange views and for social intercourse, aside from the opportunities afforded by these societies. From the very nature of our vocation, we are debarred from this pleasure. Separated by wide expanses of territory, isolated, as far as personal communication goes, almost as completely as Robinson Crusoe on his sea-washed isle, it is only in an organization such as this that we can hope to meet and confer with each other, to our mutual bene.
fit. And I affirm that there is no class of men on the broad earth to-day upon whose shoulders rests a greater degree of responsibility than that which rests upon ours. We owe it to our companies, to the traveling pub. lic and to ourselves to become as proficient as possible in our calling.
The God of creation has made no beast swift and strong enough to sat. isfy the demands of impatient and restless man. So man has supplied the deficiency by the exercise of his marvelous genius. He has harnessed the hurricane in a harness of iron and steel, and feeds him with flames. We get on board the magnificent train drawn by this steed. What a little world is there! Strange people from every clime gathered from here and there! Many are going to build homes in the vast, illimitable, changing West. They are the waves of what will soon be a human sea that roll over the blossoming prairies and deluge them with wealth and joy. In those palaces we see many a picture, each worthy to be framed in our memory. Here is a young mother with her babe on her knee and the love light flowing from her eyes like a blessing. There is an aged couple, with heads frosted by many winters. They have left most of earth's cares be. hind them. They have left the little village in the East, where they have passed many happy days together, and are now journeying west to see their boy who came out long ago. He has prospered and grown rich. Just behind them is a young couple upon their wedding tour. To them the world is as rosy as if no hope ever died in it, or grief had never once raised her ghastly head. They see no ashes of flowers that withered and fell. These are pictures of human life. What trustful pictures they are! No fear or shadow of fear comes into the eyes of the young or old as they are whirled over dizzy bridges, past huge rocks and hills, through frowning forests and dark tunnels, not a fear nor a doubt.
The master's eye has been upon upon the path and paved it smoothly for the flying train laden with human freight. To the master's vigilance through summer's heat and winter's howling blast is due the safety of the human occupants of those flying palaces. I wish to say a word here for the men who deal the hard blows, face the bitter storms, swelter in the relentless heat, and brave the life-chilling cold for a pittance per day. They live hard, work hard, and many of them die hard. The flowers that spring up in their paths are few. They are called upon to throw them. selves against the elemental forces of nature, to overcome by the efforts of human flesh and blood the obdurate rock, the stubborn iron, the heavy clay and the unyielding resistance of the plain, the forest and the moun. tain. In their cheerless labor we behold the conquering of the insensate masses, the ponderous bulks, the previously undisturbed aggregations of myriads of centuries. All this is done by the laboring classes of the country. Yours it is to direct, theirs to do, yours to fashion, theirs to form, yours to conceive, theirs to execute; you have pleasant homes and interesting fami. lies, the doors of society are open to you, while want dwells in their home, and society is a sealed book to them. Their sorrows are many; their joys are few; it is lamentably true that the majority of these men have large families, and small pay. In view of all this, I adjure you to exercise at all
times kindness to these men with whose destinies and happiness you have so much to do. Deal kindly, fairly and honestly with our employes, for by so doing we receive honest labor in return.
Gentlemen, it's for our mutual improvement that we have met in this beautiful city to-day. I feel the importance of this Association to the country, whereby we may openly discuss questions and arrive at conclusions as to the best materials and devices to be used in railroad construction and repairs ; lives and property are at stake, and the Supreme Court of the United States may have to decide questions where our testimony will be of service, questions to be decided by practical men, and I look upon this Association as of as much importance as any Association in this country, and I hope none will fail to feel that importance, and that every one has come here with an earnest spirit to investigate, and discuss, so that we may arrive at the very best conclusions, and present them to the country as a guide for every road.
In conclusion I believe that roadmasters are confined more closely to their work than any other class of men in the world. We are tied down in our daily employment, we seem to feel that we can hardly leave our work for an hour, yet it is necessary for us, and for our interests and the interests of our roads, that we come and have this interchange of opinion; and the extent of the work we have to perform, and the responsibilities we have, really require a little recreation once a year. Now as to recreation, we should not come and make this a mere pleasure trip; we should keep before us the main point of the work; let that be the object, and our pleasures a secondary consideration. I thank you one and all for your kind attention.
After the reading of the address, MR. MCQUISTON said: I move that the address be printed, and a copy sent to each member, and that a portrait of our worthy President be also published · with it. It seems to me to be the best written document I have listened to for a long time. It hits the situation exactly. I think that every man should be in some degree a representative of the average sentiments and average intelligence of the men whom he controls. He cannot control them simply by mechanical or tyrannical means or power; he must in some degree be a representative of their average sentiments and wants. If he is such a man, he can make these poor people with whom he has to deal in some degree happy; he can conduce to their welfare, and it is well known that under those circumstances his men will do much more to further the interests which he has under his charge than he can possibly get them to do by mere brute force. I think, Mr. President, you have embraced all the points, and I insist that a portrait of the orator be procured and attached to the address. I make that as a motion.