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About Valentine Democrat. (Valentine, Neb.) 1900-1930 | View Entire Issue (June 5, 1902)
By CHARLOTTE M. BRAEME.
CHAPTER VII. ( Continued. )
Early the next morning they started
"Florence is the most brilliant and gay
of all the Italian cities just at present , "
said Sir Hulbert ; "we will go there. "
This time he went to a hotel ; there was
no time for taking a house , and it seem
ed to him that , for a change , hotel life
would be pleasant. They went to the
Hotel San Marco , where several English
people of rank and fortune were staying.
Sir Hulberl looked down the list of vis-
itorc' names , then entered his Mr. and
Irene smiled as she read it.
"Suppose , " she said , "there are people
hfere who know you ; they will wonder
why you call yourself Mr. Leigh. " r
"I 'shall ' not tell lh--'m , " he answered.
"There are no personal friends of mine
on the list. It seems to be a very nice
hotel ; we shall be most comfortable here ,
I think. "
A magnificent suite of apartments was
allotted to Mr. and Mrs. Leigh with their
"Shall we join the table d'hot.j ? " asked
Sir Hulbert , of his fair young wife. "It
will be more cheerful , but not so digni
"I shall like it best , " she replied.
One week passed happily enough ; they
drove round the beautiful environs of
fair Florence ; they visited the picture
galleries , the palaces , the gardens and
one evening , when dinner was over , and
they wera sitting on the broad terrace
that overlooked the Arno , a party of
English people arrived Lord and Lady
Glendayer , with their three tall , gaunt
daughters. The whole party came upon
the terrace , and before Sir Hulbert had
time even to look around , Lord Glendayer
came up to him. Everyone was looking
at them , or he would not , perhaps , have
acted just as he did.
"How do you do. Sir Hulbert ? " said
my lord , in his loud , cheery voice. "I
did not anticipate the pleasure of seeing
you here. "
j The handsome face grew dark with
annoyance and pale with passion. *
"I beg your pardon , " lie said , quickly ,
"I have not had the honor of knowing
Lord Glendayer smiled.
"It is not a very pleasant matter to be
BO completely forgotten. Let me remind
jou , Sir Hulbert , I met you at an an
nual dinner at the Freemasons' Hall. "
He was interrupted.
"You are altogether mistaken , " said
the baronet. "I am Mr. Leigh. "
"Nay , I cannot surely be mistaken , "
said Lord Glendayer. "We sat talking
for half an hour about the iucome tax.
I cannot be mistaken. "
"Then if you are not mistaken , I do not
know my own name , " said Sir Hulbert ,
haughtily. "I hope to he believed when
I insist that 1 am Mr. Leigh. "
Lord Glendayer bowed and retired ; the
conversation had been quite public , but
did not excite much comment. "Mistak
en identity , " people said , as they smiled
at each other , "and really some of these
good English do resemble each other so
"Did he really know you , Hulbert ? "
said Irene , "just as he said he did1
"Yes , 1 am afraid so , my darling , " he
"Why did you not tell him the truth ? "
"I could not. I must have introduced
"And why not , rather than offend an
old friend ? " slie asked.
"He is not an old friend ; and no one
knows , sweet , better than you , that I
cannot introduce you as mv wife at pres
That seemed plausible enough , but
Irene was going up the grand .staircase
alone that evening when Miss Glendayer ,
a lady of strong character and rather
passee appearanceassed her by. Irene
stopped to make room for her , and some '
little courtesies passed between them.
Suddenly , from the broad corridor , Lady
Glendayer , tall , awful and solemn , ap- , '
"Matilda. " she said , "to whom are von .
talking ? "
"Dear mamma , to Mrs. Leigh , " she re (
"I do not know such a person. " said
my Jady , "and in a hotnl of this kind you J
cannot be too careful. I want you at
Miss Glendayer looked-into the blushing
face of the beautiful girl.
"There is some mistake , " she cried ;
"mamma cannot possibly know that it is
"There is no mistake , " cried my lady. '
"Your papa may have madeone > hey
are not in my way ; I have not made an
"I am very sorry , " said Miss Glen
dayer , as she hastened away , leaving
Irene indignant and amazed. At once
she wont to Sir Hulbert and told him
what had happened. He would not let '
her see how greatly he was angered.
"Take no notice of it , darling. " he said ;
"it'is some foolish mistake. In my hum
ble opinion the half of the people in the
world arc mad that old lady could not !
have been sane. "
And shortly thereafter they returned
to their native land.
"I must be near London , " said Sir Hul
bert , when the question of wh re they
should live came tobe settled. "You will
be happier if we are where we will see
each other often. "
He never forgot the eyes of distress
that she raised to his fa'ce.
"Shall we not always be together as
we are here ? " she asked.
"No ; that would be quite impossible.
Irene. I have a great house palace. I
might call it of my own in May fair , hut
do not live there. It is called Estmere
HOBSC. An old lady , distantly related to
me , takes care of it for me. I seldom
go near it. When I am in town I prefer
hotel or club life. "
She laid her folded hands o * his shoul
"But why , " she asked , "why must we ,
not be together , Hulbert ? "
"My dear child , you cannot be with me
in London until ' '
He paused , and she added :
"Until our marriage is made kno'yn ? "
"Exactly so , " he replied , with a care
"If I had known that , " she said , in a
passion of tears , "I would never have
come to England. "
"You will be very happy , sweet. There
is a grand old house at.Kew to let. The
Countess of Horland used to live there.
The lawn slopes down to the very bank
of the river , and the nightingales sing
in the trees. It is beautifully furnished.
I thought of taking it so that I can often
run down there. I could spend quite half
of every week with you and take you out
"But , Hulbert , " she pleaded , ' 'why
could we not go to your house in London
and Jive there ? "
"If we did that , I must introduce you
to the world as my wife ; and at present ,
you know , that cannot be. "
She looked at him wistfully.
"When will it he , Hulbert ? I I can
not go home to Branslea until that is
done. I cannot tell how it is , but I se m
to have lost half the pleasure I used to
have in calling myself Lady Irene Est-
She tried to smile as she spoke ; but her
lips quivered and her hands trembled. He
turned away with a careless smile , a
light laugh that jarred upon her.
"You are impatient , Irene. 1 have al
ways told you how uncertain the time
was. Can you not make yourself happy
with me ? "
He bent down to kiss her ; and all the
passion and love in her heart surged over
her now. She had no more objections , no
more hesitation ; she would live just
whore he wished her , and do all that he
1J ( echgrove was taken , with all its lux
urious appointments furniture , decora
tion and hangings a home flt for a duch
ess. For the first time Irene felt at
One evening Sir Hulbert suddenly be
came dissatisfied with the quality of his
"There is but one thing in the world
that I am fastidious over , " he cried , "and
that is my cigars , Irene. There is a case
in my pocket , the pocket of the coat
hanging up in the hall will you look for
it ? I have not patience for these things.
There are no rosebuds this time , I can
She went at once to do his bidding.
True , there was no vestige of a rosebud ,
hut there was something worse. Out of
the pocket of the overcoat fell a pair of
lemon-tinted gloves , and a delicate ivory
tablet that had been used by some lady
at a ball.
Without thinking , she hastily read it
over , and the name of Sir Hulbert was
repeated ove'r and over again. This , then ,
\vas the reason why he could not take her
to the theater the evening previous ; he
had been at a ball with someone else. She
did not stop poor child , to consider or
Lo think ; she forgot all about tho cigars ,
lier beautiful face Hushed hotly. She
went back to him at once , and laid the
pretty tablet before him.
"Now I understand why you would
not take me out , ' " she said. "Your en
gagement was a ball. You would not tell
me where. Doubtless it was with the
ady to whom this belonged is it so ? "
A shadow of pride , auger , and defiance
mssed over his face ; then a careless ,
jalf-scornful smile crossed his lips.
"It was so. You are right in both sur-
nisos. What then ? "
"What then ? " she repeated. "How
rruel , how heartless , how unkind. "
"I do not see it. Irene , my position
11 the world obliges me to fulfill obliga-
ions. What folly to quarrel over it. "
"Does your social position oblige you to
ro to balls , while you leave me here
ilone , and treasure even such a trifle as
his ? ' ' she asked , angrily. "I see a name
> n it. What is it ? 'Lady Lira Geraut. '
lulbert , who is Lady Lira Gerant ? "
The dark face flushed , and an angry
ight flamed in his eyes.
"If Lady Gerant be nothing to you , "
ilie said , "why have you kept this ? Yon
mist have kept it for her sake. "
"I can safely aver I did no such thing , >
rone. I did not even know it was in
ny pocket. I danced with the lady last
veiling , it is true ; as you can see for
ourself , I wrote my name on her tablet ,
can only imagine that she left it in my
lauds , and I put it away with what is
nuch more precious to me my own cigar
a.se. . If you were less jealous , Irene , I
ould trust you more. If I had told you
ust night that I was going to a ball there
vould have been a scene , as you know ;
on would have been jealous , and I
hould not have liked that. If you were
'easonable , and I could speak to you
vithout fear , I should tell voti. every-
"I am not jealous , " she said , "but it
eems to me I have a right to know
rhere you go and what you do. Hulbert ,
vho is Lady what is the name ? " she
ook up the tablet again and re-read it
"Lady Lira Gerant. ' Who is she , Hul-
iert ? "
lie laughed carelessly.
"Some people consider her the most
eautiful woman in England , Irene. I
o not. I think you hold that place of
"But who is she ? " asked Irene. "I do
ot want to know what , but whojs she ? "
"She is the daughter of one of the most
loworful earls Earl Gerant , a man sec-
mi to none , " he replied , earnestly. "He
3 the greatest power in the State. "
"I have read about him , " she said ,
"You have asked me who Lady Lira is ;
can tell you in very few words. The
Countess of Gerant died a few years
ince , and Lady Lira , who was then but
eventeen years old , took the entire com-
land of her father's household. She is :
ust twenty. She is accounted by many
tie loveliest woman in England ; she holds
neof the highest positions in the land ;
he is a wealthy hfiross , and she is , be-
ides , the very queen of fashion. "
Tender arms stole round his neck , and
weet lips were laid lightly on his own. :
"Still , " said a low , sweet voice , "still
or all that , I would not change places
-ith her. Hulbert. " .
"Why not , my dearest ? " he aske-d.
"Because you do not love her. and you
o love me , " she answered , and those sim- d
le words touched him far more than ho )
rould have liked to own ; his face grew
pale under them , he winced like a man
who had received a sudden shot in the
"So , for all her beauty , her wealth ,
her brilliant position , and her honored
name , I 'jo not envy the Lady Lira Ge
raut , " continued the girl. "The only
woman on earth I should ever envy
would be the woman you loved that is ,
if ever you did or could love anyone but
July , with its warmth and fragrance ,
passed ; August came. It had been un
derstood between them that Irene should
not leave Beechgrove.
"Walk or drive as much as you will im
this neighborhood , " Sir Hulbert had said ,
"but never go to town. "
She had faithfully complied with his
wish ; but during the first week in Au
gust came his birthday , and she wanted
to purchase a handsome ring for him.
She planned in her own mind how she
would always makp him wear it. It was
not fair , she tljoiight , that married man
should not wear some token of his bond
age. She had often debated the subject
with Sir Hulbert , and her own opinion
was that a married man was quite as
strictly bound to wear a wedding ring as
a married lady.
So , on his birthday , she would present
him with one. and she would ask him
to wear it always , just as she wore the
plain circlet of gold he had placed upon
Once in town , she thought it no harm
to drive around. She had no intention of
watching her husband , she preferred not
meeting him. She wished to keep her
present as a surprise , and if she met him
sho would have to give some evasive an
swer when he asked what she was doing
As ill luck , or fortune , or fate , would
have it , as she was driving through Hyde
Park , she saw him ; he was seated by
the side of a lady , and he was so deeply
engrossed in conversation with her that
he never even raised his eyes as Irene
passed by. She knew that expression on
his dark , handsome face. It was one of
deep and rapt attention she knew the
look in the dark , eloquent eyes it was
one of profound admiration , she had seen
them with that same look linger on her
face. It was but a fleeting look on hia
face , her glance lingered long on the
lovely lady at his side a dark-browed
woman with a mouth like a rosebud
dark , proud eyes a high-bred patrician
face a proud , graceful , elegant lady , su
perbly dressed , young , beautiful , and evi
dently not indifferent to Sir Hulbert.
It was not so much jealousy that gave
her so keen a sense of pain , that her
face blanched and her hands trembled ,
uot so much jealousy as a sudden , subtle
sense of the fact that her world and his '
lay far apart ; that his interests , his
friendships , his likings , and everything
connected with him , were entirely sep
arated from hers , that had always been
one of unity , of harmony , two lives in
one , not of divided interests and separate
"I might as well not be married , " she
said to herself , "for I live outside my
husband's life. "
Another time , when she was in town
on business which she did not wish him
to know , she saw him riding by the side
of the same lady. They were going to- j
ward the park , and a sharp twinge of
jealousy added to her pain ; there wab no
concealing the fact that the expression
on Sir Ilulbert's face was one of pro
Then a fatal idea entered her head ; it
was that the next time Sir Hulbert went
to town she would follow him , and watch j
for herself what kind of a life he led
there , and how he passed his time.
When he left Beechgrove at three the
next afternoon , she followed him by tho
four o'clock train ; as he rode into town
and she went by train , she was there
first. Instinct rather than knowledge
made her go to the club , where he told
her ho spent the greater part of his time.
She had wrapped herself up so securely
that she wa.s sure , even if he passed her ,
that lit would not know her. Everyone
knows Estmere House , the lovely and
magnificent mansion facing Hyde Park ,
one of the finest houses in London. It
is more like a palace than the dwelling
place of a subject. On this August even
ing while the silver moon hid her face
behind the clouds , and the sweet night
wind told its secret to the trees , one
might have seen a tall , slender figure ,
draped in black , near the gates of the
mansion ; the figure of a woman evidently
watching , but she was fortunate , so far
is this , that no onenoticed her. Every
time the grand iron gates opened she
Kissed near enough to see and hoar. Her ]
patient waiting seemed to be rewarded
when .she saw the tall figure of a gentle
man in evening dress. A closed carnage
tlrovc up to the porch with its long , broad
flight of marble .steps , and she overheard
the order given to the coachman :
"Court place. "
Now , who lived at Court place and
what was it ?
The only plan that suggested itself to
ler was to hasten to the nearest cab
stand , and tell one of the drivers to take
ler to Court place. She did so , and the
Qvstman to whom she spoke , said : "I do
tiot know Court place , miss. "
Up came another , quite eagerly. "I
enow it , miss , " he said ; "it is St. James'
Park. Lord Geraut's mansion. I know
it. miss. "
"Lord Gerant's ! " The words were like
i revelation to her. She remembered now
that a few days since , while reading the
fashionable intelligence to Sir Hulbert ,
she came across the following item : "The
Sari Geraut still remains at his mansion
n St. James' Park , where his official
luties detain him. " She had asked at
the time what these official duties were ,
and Sir Hulbert had told her. She
thought of this as she drove to the house
Sir Hulbert had gone. There the
: abman asked a fare that might have
istonished one more versed in the ways
) f the world. She paid it , and would
mve paid it if it had been gold instead
) f silver. She saw before her a man
sion little less magnificent than that of
Sir Hulbert's. There were lights in the
ivindows , carriages driving to and from
he door. Unexpectedly the grand hall
loor was opened , and she saw brilliant
ights , servants in livery , every sign of
vealth , luxury and magnificence. What
vas Sir Hulbert doing there ?
She stood watching , patiently , and
igain her patience was rewarded. A
losed carriage , with a pair of fine horses
irove up to the door , and in a few min- :
ites Sir Hulbert appeared , leading by
.he hand the same beautiful lady she c
md seen him with before a lady bril- j [
iant as the sarnmer sun at noonday
liamonds flashing in her hair , her eyei !
right as stars.
( To be continued. ) k
Excerpts From The Nebraska Independent , Lincoln , Nebraska , Made by Direc
tion of the Populist State Central Committee.
Editor Rosewater of the Omaha Bee
Is determined that the state board of
equalization shall understand that he
was not bluffing when he asked that
the board should assess railroad fran
chises. Tuesday E. W. Slmeral , re
presenting the relator in the case of
State ex rel. Bee Publishing Co. v.
Savage , et al , filed his motion in the
supreme court asking a writ of man
damus. The court issued an alternat
ive writ , returnable June 3 , directing
the state board to reassess the railroad
and telegraph property within the
state or show cause why it should not.
The Bee remarks that "the members of
the state board of equalization now
have an opportunity to tell the su
preme court why. " Attorney General
Prput will represent the board , Sim
eral will appear for the relator , and
every "chief guy" railroad attorney
in the state will probably want to ap
pear as "friend of the court. " The
suit is a timely one and will result in
a judicial interpretation of the vexed
question wfiether the board has suf
ficient law , or any law. requiring it
to assess railroad franchises. The out
come will be watched with interest. If
the writ is made mandatory , then
Rosewater will strengthen his claims
for turning down Stuefer and Weston
( Savage being already shelved ) ; but
the republican platform on railroad
assessments is written , no matter
which way the case goes.
The Omaha board of equalization
finished its work Monday night with
the result that $1,523,190 is added to
the value of the five public service
corporations This is a great victory
for the real estate exchange , and a
leather in the cap of Attorney J. H.
Mclntosh. who conducted the case to
the supreme court and back. The
companies affected are : Omaha Street
railway , raised $750,000 ; Omaha water
company. $275,000 ; omaha gas com
pany , $57,500 ; and Nebraska tele
phone company , $65,690. Combined
figures are as follows :
Assessment by tax commis
Reduced by board to 1,751,810
Present figures 3,275,000
It is wonderful to note the gyrations
now being made by certain republican
organs because the May school ap
portionment is over the $400,000 mark.
Formerly , when the populist adminis
tration apportioned large sums , it was
"McKinley prosperity" that did it ;
now it is the excellent work of Treas
urer Stuefer , Land Commissioner
Follmer , et al. The state officers aie
the ones who deserve the credit ,
whether they are populists or repub
licans , and no fair-minded man would
refuse to give credit for every good act ,
performed by any of the republican j
state officials. Part of every appor
tionment is not due to the efficiency
of the officers in charge when it is
made. The United States bonds pur
chased many years ago still continue
to bear $300 revenue every six months ,
regardless of whether a populist or a
republican treasurer is in charge , and
no syccial credit is due the treasurer c
becaue of its receipt. The increase ,
in tho fusion apportionment was due
in great measure to the energy of
"Uncle Jake" Wolfe , the populist land
commissioner ; but while Uncle Jake s
was collecting for the then present up- a
portionments , he was also leasing r
many thousands of acres , the rentals
of which are now being collected by
Mr. Follmer ; and Mr. Meserve was .
making investments , the interest on
which is now being collected by Treas \
urer Stuefer. The present apportion
ment is made up of the following
State School Taxes $122,514.99
Interest on School and Sa
line Lands Sold 122,281.78
Interest on School and Sa
line Lands Leased 78,332.88 riJI
Interest on United States JIo
Bonds 300.00 JIli
Interest on County Bonds 64,424.94 lit
Interest on Warrants 27,058.94
interest on school district
Game and Fish License Fees 2,058.00
Peddlers" License . 89.1
Embalmers' Bal . 1.05
The item of "interest on warrants , a
$27,058.94" is directly to be credited o
to the wisdom of the populist board of
educational lands and funds. Every
warrant on which that $27,000 inter
est accrued was purchased by Treas
nrer Meserve. Had the former repuh- * :
lican policy been carried out , there * '
would have been no investment in
warrants , and this approtionment
vould have been that much smaller.
A large portion of the interest on
schools lands leased is directly due to
uncle Jake's good work. But give
the devil his due. Credit the repub
lican officials with all they arc entitled
to. Benevolent assimiliatlon didn't
make the school apportionment , and
the fact that the present oiiicials are n
trying to keep up the pace set for them
by their fusion predecessors is good
evidence that fusion has done good 1J
for Nebraska , . Former republican ad
ministrations never reached the mark
yet they could have done much bet
ter , with every security bearing high-
2r interest rates than now and just fl
is much land to get income from. o
RAILROAD ASSESSMENT tlb
! Predictedb7 The Independent , the Re tiv
publican Board Insults the People 6 !
by MakingRnise of fteven- a :
Tentka ofbua Per Cent c ;
Tha unexpected doesn't always hap
pen. Frequently results can be fore na
casted with almost mathematical cer a
tainty. It required no gift of prophecy n :
Lo foretell that the state board of 0al
squallzation would make no appreci- al
ible raise in the railroad assessment
his year , because the republican party 0 ]
n Nebraska has for many years been m
: ontrolled by the railroad interests , biPi
t is not simply because the taxing Pi
> oard is composed of Governor Sav- tlh
ige , Treasurer Steufer , and Auditor h ;
Weston , that the railroads are asses- P <
sed at such a ridiculously Jow valua
tion but rather because the republi
can party , that is , tne leadership of
zhat party , is dominated by the rail
roads. There are individual republi-
c , ns , of course , who are free from such
a charge ; but the party as a political
organization is essentially a railroad
party , a monopoly party. On the
other hand there are undoubtedly
some populists who wear the corpor
ation yoke , although not many ; but
the party as a political organization
is essentially an anti-monopoly party.
For these reasons it is folly to expect
relief from railroad extortions and
tax-shirking through republican ad
ministration ; it cannot come except
through an anti-monopoly party , and
when the republican party ceases to be
a monopoly party , it will cease to be
the republican party.
Last week the board completed its
work of assessing the railroads , decid
ing that the 5,704.34 miles in Ne
braska should be valued at $26,589-
592.70 , or an average of $4,662.12 to
each mile. This is about $180,000 in
crease over last year's assessment ,
or the insignificant amount of seven-
tenths of one per cent ( .7 per cent , or
an increase of 7 points out of a thous
The following table shows the as
sessed railway valuation for the thir
teen years , 1890 to 1902 , Inclusive , ai.d
the grand assessment roll for these
years , except for 1902 , that being not
Grand Assessed Rail-
Assm't Roll. way Val'n.
1890 . . . . $184,770,304.54 $29,83i,221.05
1891 . . . . 183,138,236.28 29,205,917.50
1892 . . . . 186,432,376.71 29,3J9,631.00
1893 . . . . 194,733,124.73 28,374,138.00
1894 . . . .183,717,498.78 27,939,178.50
1895 . . . .171,468,207.48 25,425,308.00
1896 . . . .167,078,270.37 25,424,708.00
1897 . . . .165,193,736.42 25,561,720.70
1898 . . . . 167,810,764.79 26,108,936.80
1899 . . . . 169,105,905.10 26,106,450.10
1900 . . . . 171,747,593.41 26,346,735.90
1901 . . . . 174,439,095.45 26,422,732.39
1902 . . . . 26,589,582.70
Last year the board assessed the
Omaha Bridge & Terminal company ,
and did not do so this year. Compar
ing the property assessed both years
the increase on railroad property
alone is $184,752.40 , although the ac
tual increase , as shown by the figures
above , is only $166,860.31. This is
acounted for by the omission of the
bridge property this year , which will
be assessed by the county authorities
This insignificant raise in the rail
road assessment is an insult to the in
telligence of Nebraska taxpayers. It
will help out the already overburdened <
state general fund to the tune of some
thing over $900 on the 5 mill levy al <
lowed by law. It will result in about
1,300 additional state taxes all told
general , university , and state school
'unds. And right in the face of the
tact that two of the roads , the Burl
ington and the Union Pacific , have in
: he past nine months ( ending March
> 1 , 1902) ) increased their net earnings.
Dver the corresponding period in 1901 , :
is follows :
Union Pacific 2,796,084
Remember that these figures repre
sent INCREASED net earnings ; the
ictual net earnings for the 1902 nine-
nonths period being :
Jnion Pacific 17,281,769
Yet the state board of equalization ,
et all the railroads in the state off
vith a paltry raise of $1,300 for state
axes ; and the total increase for all
mrposes , state , county , municipal ,
ind school district even at the high
ate of 50 mills would not amount to
.10,000 . for the entire year for all the
oads. The "Burlington alone will .
[ raw from the people of Nebraska for
let earnings ( chat is , the total charges
or freight and passenger service , less
iperating expenses ) in the neighbor-
sood of $8,000,000 or $9,000.000 during
he year 1902 ; but the people of Ne-
raska will receive from all the rail-
oads in the state not to exceed $1,300-
00 in taxes of every description and :
t is doubtful if the amount will
Whatever criticisms may be urged
.gainst the members of other boards
if equalization , whether populist or
epubllcan officials , the fact remains
hat the present board deserves the
everest censure for its action. The
itiestion of just and equitable taxa-
ion is a growing one , and it is idle
o deny that the present board is better
quipped for doing its full duty than
he boards which preceded it. Only
ecently have the people came to a
learer realization of the fact that a
ailroad corporation possesses and en-
oys a valuable something which the
of property generally do not
iossess or enjoy that is to say , its IT
ranchise , its right to exercise the ITsi
overnmental function of eminent do- ti
lain , condemning and taking private tin <
iroperty for its use ; its right to the n
xclusive use of a continuous strip ai
ind as a highway ; its right to charge aiS ;
or services "all that the traffic will tl
ear. " Only recently have the people tlC
ome to a clearer realization of the C (
act that a railroad should be valued n
s ! au entirety not as a scrap heap oj
f ties , rails , box cars , and engines. 01
Inly recently have they learned that 01ai
he railroad valued as an entirety is aire
astly more valuable than the com- re
ined values of all its visible ct-nsti- rePI
utent parts ascertained in the u.ual it :
ray. And the present board cannot SI
scape criticism on the plea of ignor- te
nce. Other boards may , but this one IE
annot , because the whole matter has ei
een very thoroughly discussed in the eiP :
ewspapers ; it was presented in an se
ble manner by M. F. Harrington in tt
letter to the board , and in the argu- be
lenta of Edward Rosewater of the
imaha Bcc and E. W. Simeral , his in
ttorney , before the board. The In-
epaud nt has been hammering away
n this franchise question for many C
lonths but , of course the republican
oard would not listen to a populist m
aper but is IP gratifying to note 'c
tiat Mr. Simeral and Mr. Rosewater oc
ave been close readers of The Inde- hi
tndent There Is no copyright on
The Independent was the
the Idea , but
pioneer in the movement in this part
of the west to tax railroad franchises
and to show how the value of such
could be ascertained.
What is a railroad worth ? Let-
Judge Brewer answer. He cannot be
charged with being a wild-eyed popu
" cardinal rule , " says tne
list. "It is a
judge , "which should never be for
whatever property Is
gotten , that
worth for the purposes of income and
sale it is also worth for the purpose
of taxation. " ( Adams Express Co. v.
Ohio , 166 U. S. , 185 and 220) . It is not
often that a railroad is sold outright ,
but ownership of a portion thereof is
usually in the market in the way or
stocks or bonds. Let us apply this
to a Nebraska road or two.
Before the Northern Pacific bought
the Burlington stock , the capitaliza
tion for every mile of line was :
Capital stock $14,503
Funded debt 22,767
The Hill crowd offered $2 in 4 per
cent bonds for every dollars worth
of stock , and thisras accepted. These *
new 4 per cent bonds are quoted at
96. The old bondsare not quoted , but
it is not likely they are below par.
Accordingly the actual value of the
Bu..iagton today is at a conservative
estimate $50,000 per mile , or $120-
831,500 for the 2,416.63 miles assessed
by the board at $10,357,236.70 , or less
than one-eleventh of its actual value.
2,416.63 MILES B. & M.
Actual value per mile $ 50C\0
Actual value 120 > 31,500
Assessed value per mile 4,285
Assessed value 10,357,236
At one tenth 12,083,150
At one-ninth 13,425,722
At one-eighth 15,103,938
At one-seventh 17,261,643
At one-sixth 20,138,583
At one-fifth 24,166,300
Suppose we take the Union Pacific ,
not counting the branch lines-slmply
the 467.38 miles from Omaha west.
which the board assessed at $4,480,324 ,
or $9,800 per mile. Under the reor
ganization this road is capitalized per
mile at :
Funded debt 51,182
Union Pacific 4s are selling at 105
1-2 to 106 3-4 ; preferred stock at 87
and common stock at 103 1-2. This
would bring the actual value of the
road to about :
Or $120,000 per mile. That is what
the Union Pacifis is worth on the
market today. Yet this republican
board assessed it at only $9,800 per
mile , or less than one-twelfth of its
467.38 MILES UNION PACIFIC.
Actual value per mile $ -120,000
A-ctual value 56,085,600
Assessed value per mile 9,800
Assessed value 4,480,324
i\.t one-eleventh 5,098,691
A.t one-tenth 5,608,560
U one-ninth 6,231,73.1
< U one-eighth 7,010,700
U one-seventh 8.012.22S
t one-sixth 9,347,600
i.t one-fifth 11,217,120
In order that the farmer may know
vhether the board did its duty , let
nm make a comparison with his own
issessment. The different fractions of
ictual value are worked out down to
ne-fifth. The Burlington's assess-
nent is little if any higher than its
let earnings in Nebraska will be this
rear. If the farmer or business man
vere assessed no higher than his net
jarnings , the grand assessment rolls
vould shrink worse than they have.
Mr. Simeral's statement to the board
hat the Nebraska railroads are today
vorth about $300,000,000 on the mar-
: et , is about the correct figure. Thesa
oads are earning interest and divi-
lends on that amount. They did not
ost any such sum , but that makes no
lifference. When the farm rises in
alue its assessed valuation goes up
-the cost is never figured in arriving-
.t the taxable value of a farm. The
iuestion always is , What will it sell
or ? The Nebraska roads , or most
if them are being sold every day on
he stock exchange. They are worth
hree hundred million dollars ; yet
hey were assessed a miserable'sum ,
ess than one-eleventh , less than 9 per
ent , of their selling value in the mar-
et and this , too , after fellow repub-
icans to the members of the beard ,
len higher in the councils of the
arty , had implored them to make a
Even at one-sev-
nth actual value , the railroad assess-
lent would have been over $42,000,000
r over $16,000,000 greater than it Is !
'his would have produced $80,000 ad-
itional state general fund taxes '
omething that is greatly needed these ,
ays to help to wipe out that two mil-
ions of floating debt. The assess
ment ought not have been a cent less
nan forty millions at the most con-
ervative figures. Anything less than
fiat amount is simply gigantic tax-
No other board ever had the 'tax
latter so clearly presented for con-
ideration , and no other board ever
urned so deaf an ear to the voice of
eason. Railroad assessments will
everbe raised by a republican board
ny appreciable amount. Messers.
avage , Stuefer , and Weston wrote
ae republican platform for 1902 , so
ir as corporation
taxation is con-
erned , when they decided to tax the
lilroads on the basis of one-eleventh
f actual value. Governor Savage is
ut of the race , but Treasurer Stuefer
nd Auditor Weston
omination. Knowing that this rail-
Dad assessment means defeat at the
oils this fall , unless the responsibit-
y can be saddled upon Weston ami
Rosewater will at-
Jmpt to have them "turned down"
i the convention in June. But wh.th -
r he succeeds or not , the republican
arty is responsible for the low as-
jssment. Every republican leader in
le state gave aid and comfort to tbo
oard in doing just as it did , if we
ccept Mr. Rosewater and he is held
i bad odor by the machine.
A.dramatic critic writing of the suo
jss of Ben Hur in London , says that
Sen. Lew Wallace is a very devout
lan. " He should have heard the
levout" language that Lew Wallaca
: casionally uses when something rilea
im , before he attempted that write *
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