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All grain arriving at terminal points, except such as is billed to points beyond, is subject to state inspection and weighing. On arrival of cars, an inspector's helper proceeds to examine the cars for evidence of leakage or bad condition, making a record accordingly. He also records the number of the railroad seals before opening the cars preparatory for inspection. The inspector follows and carefully inspects each car of grain, making a complete record of grade and dockage and his reasons for the same. After all the cars are thus inspected, the result is reported at the office of the chief deputy inspector, where all persons interested secure their information. The helper is left on track to carefully close each car door and secure the same with a state seal, the number of which is also made a matter of record.
Persons feeling aggrieved at the decision of the inspector in any case may file an order for re-inspection, which is promptly attended to by the chief deputy inspector; and in case of continued dissatisfaction, appeal may be made to the railroad and warehouse commission, whose decision is final.
On arrival of car at final point of destination (elevator, mill, or delivery track), it is taken in charge by a state weighmaster, who carefully weighs the contents before delivery and makes his report of all such weighings at the offices of the state weighmaster. Certificates of inspection and weight are furnished upon application, without charge. All scales on which state weighing is done are under the constant supervision of scale experts employed by the department.
Deputy inspectors and weighmen are required to give a bond of $5,000, conditioned upon a faithful performance of their duties.
MINNESOTA INSPECTION AT WEST SUPERIOR. In the latter part of November, 1886, eighteen months after state inspection had gone into full operation at Minnesota terminal points, the Great Northern Elevator "A," with a capacity of 1,800,000 bushels, at West Superior, Wis., was completed and in readiness for operation. It was constructed for the purpose of facilitating the handling of the vast and increasing quantities of grain produced along the Great Northern railway lines in Minnesota and Dakota, which was seeking the Duluth market and an outlet by way of Lake Superior. In connection with its elevator system the company built extensive railway yards to establish adequate facilities for handling its cars.
At this time the board of trade at Duuth had been in existence for many years. Duluth had been the point of concentration for Northwestern grain seeking cheap transportation to the markets of the world. Its grain business had expanded from 560,000 bushels in 1871 to 23,000,000 bushels in 1886. Large grain elevators and warehouses had been constructed to accommodate its increasing grain trade, until a storage capacity of over 8,000,000 bushels had, at the time, been reached. The Minnesota system of inspection, weighing and registration had been in successful operation for one and a half years. Duluth grades had acquired an enviable reputation for their excellence and uniformity, and the state supervision of public elevators had added to the already high character of Duluth warehouse receipts and enhanced their value in Eastern markets and money centers.
At this period no board of trade or organization of grain dealers was in existence at West Superior, from the fact that, outside of incidental shipments of grain for local consumption, no consignment of grain had ever been made to this point. The first train load of grain ever consigned to Superior was received after the completion of the Great Northern elevator, and was received into that house on Dec. 9, 1886.
In order to afford its patrons proper facilities for marketing their grain and to secure for itself equal advantages with Duluth warehousemen in its business of handling, storing and shipping grain, the Great Northern Elevator Company applied to the Railroad and Warehouse Commission of Minnesota for the extension of the inspection and weighing system to the Wisconsin side of the bay.
Their request was supplemented by petitions from numerous country shippers and grain dealers at interior and terminal points, and after careful consideration of the various interests involved, and no objections being raised by the Wisconsin authorities or the citizens of Superior, the commission agreed to extend the service to the Wisconsin side, provided the Great Northern Elevator Company would enter into an agreement to transact its business in strict conformity with the provisions of the Minnesota warehouse laws and the rules and regulations of the commission, furnishing at the same time good and sufficient bonds for a faithful fulfillment of these conditions. This being agreed to, the Duluth Board of Trade brought the matter to a conclusion by the adoption of a resolution declaring the Great Northern elevator and its receipts for grain
stored therein regular on their board, the elevator company in the meantime having entered into a bond to said board conditioned that their general offices should be established and maintained in Duluth and that their business should be conducted strictly according to the laws of Minnesota and the rules and usages of the Duluth Board of Trade.
Since this arrangement went into effect in December, 1886, there have been large accessions to the elevator capacity on the Wisconsin side. The erection of the Great Northern “A” was followed by a companion house of 1,000,000 bushels, designated as Great Northern "X.” The Duluth Elevator Company in 1887 completed a system of three houses with an aggregate capacity of 4,500,000 bushels. In 1893 the Superior Terminal Elevator Company and the Belt Line Elevator Company each erected at Old Superior plants having a capacity of 1,750,000 bushels each, making a total storage capacity in public warehouses of 10,800,000 bushels. All of these houses are being operated under similar conditions which were exacted in the first instance from the Great Northern Elevator Company. Our work on the Wisconsin side had been conducted in precisely the same manner as on the Minnesota, without friction and with apparently universal satisfaction, until the enactment by the Wisconsin legislature of 1895 of a measure to regulate the inspection and weighing of grain and for the control of certain public warehouses in that state.
The passage of the measure was secured through the efforts of business men of West Superior in connection with members of the • Superior Board of Trade, the latter organization having been
formed some time prior to this for the purpose of establishing a grain business independently of Duluth.
The provisions of the Wisconsin law were similar in many features to that of Minnesota, but differed in the respect that it confined its operations to but one point in the state, the City of Superior, and delegated full power and authority to the Superior Board of Trade to enforce its provisions.
In the spring of 1895 this department was notified by the secretary of the board that, although the statute was in force and effect, there was no immediatè desire on the part of their organization to commence operations under it, and the request was conveyed that the Minnesota system should be continued until farther notice. This was complied with by the Minnesota commission upon the execution of an agreement by the Superior Board of Trade that such inspection and weighing should be permitted to continue as
heretofore, without interference in any way by said board of trade until due notice should be given of their desire for its discontinuance, such notice not to take effect until the thirty-first day of August of any crop year, the notice to be given at least ninety days prior to said date. The work continued without interference or friction until May 29, 1896, on which date the commission was again notified by the secretary of the Superior Board of Trade of the de. sire of that body for a discontinuance of the Minnesota system after Aug. 31, 1896. The notice having been given in accordance with the terms previously agreed upon, the commission accepted the same, with the counter-notice that the system would be withdrawn on the date stated, and public notice to the same effect was conveyed to all parties interested.
On Oct. 16, 1896, the Minnesota service was again restored to the Superior side as a result of action taken by the Board of Trade at that point, which is embodied in the following resolutions adopted by that body, a copy of which was transmitted to your honorable board under date of Oct. 14, 1896:
Resolwed, That the inspection and weighing under the rules of the Board of Trade of Superior be discontinued after Thursday, Oct. 15, 1896, and that the chief inspector and weighmaster and all assistants be relieved from further duty, on said date, provided that the weighmaster shall continue until the 16th of October, 1896, for the purpose of weighing “in” the grain inspected prior thereto under said board of trade inspection.
Resolved, That the Railroad and Warehouse Commission of the State of Minnesota is hereby authorized and requested to reinstate the inspection and weighing system at Superior, Douglas county, Wis., under the laws of the State of Minnesota and the rules and regulations of said commission, and to receive and collect such fees for such weighing and inspection as may from time to time be established by said commission, it being understood that such grades and fees shall at all times be uniform with those in force and effect in Duluth, Minn. Second, that in consideration of said service, the Board of Trade of Superior hereby agree with said commission that in case they accede to this request and continue Minnesota inspection and weighing as before stated at Superior, Wis., such inspection and weighing shall be permitted to continus without interference in any way by said board of trade, its officers or agents. Adopted Oct. 14, 1896.
J. J. ATKINSON,
Secretary. The history of both the Minnesota and the Superior Board of Trade inspection during the six weeks interval in which the new system was in operation is replete with incidents of an interesting character, concerning which the public is familiar and which it is unnecessary to enlarge upon. The citizens of Superior were undoubtedly actuated in their undertaking by reasonable and most natural motives, and if the venture proved unsuccessful, it was not for lack of enterprise, loyalty and strenuous effort on their part, but by reason of insurmountable conditions. Whatever temporary
animosities may have been engendered, were not shared, I am certain, by any member of this department. Our position during the controversy was naturally an unpleasant and embarrassing one, but at no time unfriendly. It was a matter in which we had no right or desire to participate except so far as to protect the interests of those who were entitled to such protection and to the extent of our jurisdiction.
In submitting this outline of our work at Superior during its ten years' history, as requested by your honorable board, permit me to state that my connection with the department in its early days and my knowledge of the sentiments of the first commission on the original question of extending the system to the Wisconsin side, enables me to state that it was not decided affirmatively without some hesitation and misgivings as to its advisability. That board fully appreciated the fact that the concession was a departure from the intention of the law, and they were governed solely by the belief, based upon the representations and assurances of the many persons interested, that the interests of grain producers and dealers in our own state would otherwise be seriously injured, and justi. fied their course in the fact that they were charged by the law to “exercise a constant supervision over the grain interests of the state.”
Each succeeding board of commissioners has ratified the action then taken and manifested a disposition to pursue the same policy in behalf of the grain interests of the state, so long as it could be done consistently and with general approval and satisfaction. The attitude of the commission has, at all times, been clear and unequivocal on this question. Fully appreciating that their operations on Wisconsin territory were conducted simply by courtesy and on invitation, they have at all times been prepared and willing to withdraw, without question or argument, upon request from proper authority, or whenever the service might be deemed unnecessary and undesirable.
Since the date of renewal of the work at Superior, it is a pleasure to state that it has progressed smoothly and with apparently greater satisfaction than at any previous time. It has been my earnest aim to furnish a prompt, impartial and efficient service fully equal in all respects to that at any of our terminal points.
STATISTICS. I respectfully invite the attention of your honorable board to the several tables accompanying this report, which are comprised