Press Conference, May 28, 1926

Date: May 28, 1926

Location: Washington, D.C.

(Original document available here)

Investigations are going on with reference to the appointment of the Board of Mediation under the Railroad Labor Act. It takes some little time to decide on the membership of the Board, but I want to get that out of the way at once.

Congressman Vare came in to – I suppose pay his respects to the office. There was no discussion about anything in particular.

Senator Jones and Senator McNary came in relative to the sale of ships that was under contemplation on the West coast. They had a resolution that had been adopted by the Commerce Committee of the Senate. I told them that I would present their views to some members of the Shipping Board. So I sent for Chairman O’Conner and Commissioner Walsh. They already had been given the resolution, I suppose by the Committee. They consider that the sale of the ships is a completed transaction and don’t see that they can do anything more about it.

I want to get a member for the Shipping Board right away to take the place of Commissioner Haney. There has been some disagreement out there as to who ought to be named, but the indications are that the interested parties in the different States are going to get together on some one. I don’t mean that Washington and Oregon are probably going to agree on it, but the people in Oregon are likely to agree on some one substantially, and the people in Washington.

Senator Howell came in this morning to see if there is anything that can be done in relation to one of the reclamation projects that are located in the western part, as I understand it, of the State of Nebraska. So I sent over for Secretary Work and Commissioner Meade and sat down a few minutes with them to take it up, because they have the information about those things and I don’t. I understood from Commissioner Meade that some telegram had been sent out to the officers of the association of water users and an inquiry as to the meaning of certain proposed terms had been received which indicated that the matter was about to be adjusted. There are some 25 of these projects. What Secretary Work and Commissioner Meade are trying to do is to treat them all alike. They have made adjustments under the recent law with I think practically all of them. While they would perhaps like to do something different for this reclamation project, the difficulty comes from the fact that they feel they ought to adopt a uniform policy in relation to all the projects. I think they say that the users of this water made no payment to the Government for the past three years and that they offered to supply the water over the next year, the Government having paid the cost of the operation for the past three years and is willing to pay the cost of the operation for the next year. What they wanted to have done is to have those who could make payments, make them, those who could give a chattel mortgage on their crops to do that, and those who couldn’t give anything else to give a note. Then there are one or two other suggested plans, I think, for the water users, the Association to give its note for some back payments or something of that kind. From my conference with them, and I have also been in communication with Representative Simmons, who is interesting himself, as this is in his I believe, I have an expectation that the matter will be adjusted in a way that will give the Government an opportunity to continue to furnish water and will also furnish all necessary relief for those who use the water in the matter of making payments.

Mr. Mitchell came in merely to call on me, as he was in town. I asked him to come to lunch. There was no official business that he had to discuss with me, nothing in relation to any foreign loans at this time. I talked with him about the general business situation over the country, which he thought was promising and that general business conditions were very good. They are never perfect. There is always some difficulty here and there. I did discuss with him an interesting question. It was brought to my attention by reason of the fact that the Ambassador of Great Britain came in, the retiring Governor of Australia, and the retiring Governor’s son, and former Ambassador Geddes happened to come in at the same time. I was speaking to them of the success that the English seem to have in getting their young enterprising men to go abroad and take positions that are for the benefit of the trade and industries of England, and that our young men haven’t seemed to have been very much attracted into the field, perhaps part of the reason being that opportunities here at home have been so good that they haven’t had to seek situations abroad. Mr. Mitchell told me that that was one of the difficulties they found in their branch banks and allied connections – that it was very difficult to get young men to take those positions where they have to go abroad to fill them. He thought probably the reason was the one that I had expressed, being that so many good opportunities exist here at home that our young men of enterprise are attracted to go into this field here, rather than seek an opportunity abroad.

I am going to speak tomorrow at the unveiling of the John Ericsson monument. I shall speak there on the Swedish people and Ericsson. I am going to speak at Arlington Monday. The general theme of address at Arlington, which is short, will be peace and prosperity. I am giving you that in order that if you want to say anything about it beforehand as to what I have said here you have liberty to do that. But I don’t want any part of my address given out, of course.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge: Remarks by the President to Newspaper Correspondents 

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Carolyn Ledewitz who prepared this document for digital publication.

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