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COMMITTEE ON INVESTIGATION OF
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Saturday, May 27, 1911. The committee this day met, Hon. Augustus O. Stanley (chairman) presiding.
STATEMENT OF MR. J. W. GATES.
The witness was duly sworn by the chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Gates, you are a resident now, I believe, of the great State of Texas!
Mr. Gates. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. And you have had considerable experience in the iron and steel business, I think?
Mr. Gates. I have had some.
The CHAIRMAN. And you are more or less interested in that business now?
Mr. GATES. Yes, sir. The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Gates, I will ask if you were ever interested any way in what was once known as the Tennessee Coal & Iron Co.? Mr. Gates. Yes, sir; I was a stockholder and director, and member of the executive committee.
The CHAIRMAN. You will please tell the committee in your own way the early history of your connection with that company.
Mr. GATES. A syndicate was formed during my absence in Texas, in November or December
Mr. BARTLETT. What year!
Mr. Gates. 1904 or 1905, I think it was, which acquired a controlling interest in the Tennessee Coal & Iron Co. That syndicate was managed by Mr. Grant B. Schley, of Moore & Schley; and Mr. Charles S. Guthrie, who was then president of the Republic Iron & Steel Co. They acquired through purchase in the open market--some possibly by private sale and purchase—a large majority of the shares of stock of the Tennessee Coal & Iron Co. They telegraphed me what they had done, and I acquiesced in their action and took a proportionate amount of the total stock purchased, which my recollection is was in the neighborhood of 200,000 shares. There were some 10 or 12 and perhaps 15 men interested in what was known as the Tennessee Iron & Coal syndicate. Under the terms of the syndicate agreement, the managers of the syndicate, Mr. Schley and Mr. Guthrie, had a right to sell the stock without asking any questions,