Skip to main content

Full text of "National defense migration. Hearings before the Select Committee Investigating National Defense Migration, House of Representatives, Seventy-seventh Congress, first[-second] session, pursuant to H. Res. 113, a resolution to inquire further into the interstate migration of citizens, emphasizing the present and potential consequences of the migraion caused by the national defense program. pt. 11-[34]"

See other formats


.v:» Q ^x.^y ^ 

Given By 











H. Res. 113 






PART 32 

MAY 7 AND 8, 1942 

Printed for the use of the Select Committee Investigating 
National Defense Migration 









H. Res. 113 






PART 32 

MAY 7 AND 8, 1942 

Printed for the use of the Select Committee Investigating 
National Defense Migration 





JOHN H. TOLAN, California, Chairman 


Robebt K. Lamb, Staff Director 



List of witnesses vn 

List of authors ix 

Thursday, May 7, 1942, morning session 11947 

Testimony of Brig. Gen. R. C. Ditto, and Lt. Col. D. Hudson. 11947, 11956 

Statement by Brig. Gen. R, C. Ditto 11954 

Testimony of Huntsville panel 1 1960, 1 1962 

Statement by A. W. McAllister 11960 

Testimony of Edward McGregor 11962, 11964 

Statement by Edward McGregor 11963 

Testimony of Norris N. Payne 11967 

Testimony of Dr. W. C. Hatchett 11973, 11977 

Statement by Dr. W. C. Hatchett 11974 

Testimony of Mrs. Walter Humphrey 11981, 11987 

Statement by Mrs. Walter Humphrey 11982 

Testimony of John B. Finley 1 11993 

Testimony of John L. Liles, Jr 11996, 11997 

Statement by John L. Liles, Jr 1 1996 

Thursday, May 7, 1942, afternoon session 12005 

Testimony of Walter L. Randolph 12005 

Testimony of John P. Ferris 12013, 12027 

Statement by John P. Ferris 12014 

Friday, May 8, 1942, morning session 12039 

Testimony of E. S. Morgan 12039, 12089 

Statement by E. S. Morgan 12039, 12085 

Testimony of H. L. Mitchell 12099,12101 

Statement by H. L. Mitchell 12099 

Testimony of J. T. Flagg and C. S. Hammill 12106 

Statement by Harry Hill 12113 

Testimony of Harry Hill 12115 

Testimony of Percy Bellman 12118 

Friday, May 8, 1942, afternoon session 12123 

Testimony of Lt. Comdr. Elmer Langworthy 12124 

Statement by Lt. Comdr. Elmer Langworthy 12129 

Testimony of newspaper panel . 12132, 12139 

Statement by Barrett C. Shelton 12132 

Statement by Charles G. Dobbins 12134 

Statement by Gould Beech 12135 

Statement by George M. Cox 12137 

Testimony of Ozborn Zuber 12158 

Introduction of exhibits 12167 

Exhibit 1. Statement by Alexander Nunn, managing editor, the Progres- 
sive Farmer, Birmingham, Ala i 12169 

Exhibit 2. Some Factors Affecting Long-time Adjustments in Southern 
Agriculture; report by H. N. Young, agricultural economist, Virginia 
Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg, Va 12170 

Exhibit 3. Development of the buy-at-home program in Alabama; state- 
ment by Robert Gregg, president of the Tennessee Coal, Iron & Rail- 
road Co., Birmingham, Alabama 12175 

Exhibit 4. The Gum Naval Stores Industry; report by S. A. Robert, Jr., 
and A. Lee Coleman, Division of Land Economics, Bureau of Agricul- 
tural Economics, United States Department of Agriculture, Atlanta, 
Ga_. 12176 

Exhibit 5. The Cotton Picker and Farm Labor; report by Mack D. Rust, 

Rust Cotton Picker Co., Memphis, Tenn 12179 



Exhibit 6. Occupational Deferment Policy; statement by Brig. Gen. 
Ben M. Smith, State director, Selective Service System, Mont- 
gomery, Ala 12180 

Exhibit 7. Statement by E. M. Norment, district supervisor, United 
States Employment Service, Social Security Board, Federal Secu- 
rity Agency, Memphis, Tenn 12182 

Exhibit 8. The Labor Market in Alabama Since June 1940; report 
by C. F. Anderson, director for Alabama, United States Employ- 
ment Service, Social Security Board, Federal Security Agency, 
Montgomery, Ala 1 12184 

Exhibit 9. Statement by A. H. Collins, State superintendent of educa- 
tion. State of Alabama, Montgomery, Ala 12197 

Exhibit 10. Health Facilities Available in Alabama; report by B. F. Austin, 
M. D., acting State health officer, department "of public health, Mont- 
gomery, Ala ■ 12201 

Exhibit 11. Statement by Loula Dunn, commissioner of public welfare, 

! State of Alabama, Montgomery, Ala 12202 

Exhibit 12. Statement by D. O. Dugger, manager of properties, Muscle 

I Shoals area, Tennessee Valley Authority, Wilson Dam, Ala 12210 

Exhibit 13. Labor Turn-over; report by J. M. Griser, viee president, 

I Alabama Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co., Mobile, Ala 12211 

Exhibit 14. Public Facilities in City of Mobile; report by Charles A. 
Baumhauer, mavor-president, board of commissioners, city of Mobile, 
Mobile, Ala____: 12212 

Exhibit 15. The Shipbuilding Industry in Mobile, Ala.; report by C. F. 
Anderson, director for Alabama, United States Employment Service, 
Social Security Board, Federal Security Agency, Montgomery, Ala 12214 

Exhibit 16. Status of Personnel Separations; report by Col. V. B. Dixon, 

commanding officer, Brooklev Field, Mobile, Ala 12216 

Exhibit 17. The Public School Situation in Mobile; report by W. C. 

Griggs, superintendent, Mobile public schools, Mobile, Ma 12217 

Exhibit 18. Hospital Facilities in Mobile; report by Emmett B. Frazer, 
M. D., F. A. C. S., chairman, hospital committee, Mobile County 
Medical Society, Mobile, Ala 12219 

Exhibit 19. Report on the citv of Prichard, bv C V. Dismukes, mayor, 

city of Prichard, Prichard, Ala 12223 

Exhibit 20. Statement by George D. Brown, superintendent, Madison 

Countv Board of Education, Hunts ville, Ala 12223 

Exhibit 21. Statement by W. K. Wittausch, Assistant Director, Division 
of Research and Statistics, Federal Housing Administration, Washington, 
D. C 12225 

Exhibit 22. Statement by J. H. Meighan, chairman, city commission, 

Gadsden, Ala 12227 

Exhibit 23. Statement by C. A. Donehoo, superintendent of city schools 

Gadsden, Ala ' 12228 

Exhibit 24. Statement by Dr. C. L. Murphree, county health officer, 

Etowah Countv Health Department, Gadsden, Ala 12229 

Exhibit 25. Statement by Edgar S. Enochs, city clerk-treasurer, city of 

Sheffield, Ala 12230 

Exhibit 26. Statement by E. A. McBride, superintendent, Talladega 

Countv Board of Education, Talledega, Ala 12231 

Exhibit 27. Statement by A. H. Watwood, principal, Childersburg High 

School, Childersburg, Ala 12232 

Exhibit 28. Statement bv J. H. Hill, M. D., county health officer, Tal- 
ladega Countv Health Department, Talladega, Ala 12232 

Exhibit 29. Statement by Henry N. Doyle, Talladega County Health De- 
partment, Talladega, Ala 12233 

Exhibit 30. Statement by R. E. Thompson, superintendent, Tuscumbia 

schools, Tuscumbia, Ala 12234 

Exhibit 31. Statement by R. E. Harper, M. D., county health officer, 

Colbert County Health Department, Tuscumbia, Ala 12235 

Exhibit 32. Statement by Rufus Porter, superintendent of education, 

Colbert Countv, Tuscumbia, Ala 12237 

Exhibit 33. Statement by Mrs. W. O. Reed, director, department of public 

welfare, Colbert County, Tuscumbia, Ala 12239 



Exhibit 34. Statement by Charles F. Vara, secretary-manager, chamber 

of commerce, Anniston, Ala 12242 

Exhibit 35. School Enrollment; report by C. C. Moseley, superintendent, 

Anniston public schools, Anniston, Ala 12243 

Exhibit 36. Statement by Frank J. Nolan, manager, the Ingails Ship- 
building Corporation, Decatur, Ala 12244 

Exhibit 37. Statement by L. L. Lively, Alabama Hosiery Mills, Inc., 

Decatur, Ala 12246 

Exhibit 38. Statement by H. M. Jones, Cooper, Wells & Co., Decatur" 

Ala 12247 

Exhibit 39. Statement by Dr. J. E. Dunn, county health officer, Lauder- 
dale County Department of Public Health, Florence, Ala 12248 

Exhibit 40. Statement by Mrs. Ruth R. Arnett, director, department of 

public welfare, Lauderdale County, Florence, Ala 12249 

Exhibit 41. The Rent Situation in Huntsville Resulting from National 
Defense Migration; report by Virginia C. Gibbs, Work Projects Admin- 
istration, Decatur, Ala 12251 

Exhibit 42. Comparison of Work Projects Administration Load at Peak 
Periods Prior to the Defense Period With the Load of the Defense 
Period; report by W. G. Henderson, State Work Projects Administrator, 
Work Projects Administration, Montgomery, Ala 12253 

Exhibit 43. Subsistence Activities and Procurement Methods in United 
States Army; statement by Maj. Gen. E. B. Gregory, Quartermaster 
General, United States Army, Washington, D. C 12264 

Exhibit 44. Agricultural Wage and Hour Legislation in Foreign Countries'- 
report by Wage and Hour Division, Research and Statistics Branch, 
Department of Labor, Washington, D. C 12266 

Exhibit 45. Backgrounds of the War Farm Labor Problem; report by the 
Bureau of Agricultural Economics and the Farm Security Administration, 

United States Department of Agriculture, Washington," D. C _ 12315 

Index (following p. 12412") i-x 


Huntsville Hearings May 7, 8, 1942 


Amis, Reese, editor, Huntsville Times, Huntsville, Ala 12132, 12139 

Beech, Gould, editorial writer, Montgomery Advertiser, Montgomery, 

Ala 12132, 12139 

Bellman, Percy, Route 4, Huntsville, Ala 12118 

Cox, George, M., editor, Mobile Register, Mobile, Ala 12132, 12139 

Ditto, Brig. Gen. R. C., commanding officer, Huntsville Arsenal, Hunts- 
ville, Ala 1 1947 

Dobbins, Charles, editor, Anniston Times, Anniston, Ala 12132, 12139 

Ferris, John P., director commerce department, Tennessee Valley Author- 
ity, Knoxville, Tenn 12013, 12027 

Finley, John B., migrant worker, 207 West Clinton Street, Huntsville, Ala_ 11993 

Flagg, J. T., president, Gardner- Warring Mill, Florence, Ala 12106 

Hammill, C. S., personnel manager, Reynolds Metals Co., Listerhill, Ala_. 12106 
Hatchett, Dr. W. C, county health officer, Madison County, Hunts- 
ville, Ala 11973, 11977 

Hill, Harry, vice president, Gulf Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Mobile, 

Ala 12113, 12115 

Hudson, Lt. Col. Carroll D., commanding officer, Redstone ordnance plant, 

Huntsville, Ala 11947 

Humphrey, Mrs. Walter, director Madison County Department of Public 

Welfare, Huntsville, Ala 11981, 11987 

Langworthy, Lt. Comdr. Elmer, port director, Mobile, Ala 12124 

Liles, John L., Jr., extension economist, Auburn, Ala 11996, 11997 

McGregor, Edward, chairman, county board of commissioners, Madison 

County, Huntsville, Ala 11962 

Mitchell, H. L., general secretary, Southern Tenant Farmers Union, 

Memphis, Tenn 12099, 12101 

Morgan, E. S., director, Region 5, Farm Security Administration, Mont- 
gomery, Ala 12039, 12089 

Payne, Norris N., clerk-treasurer, city of Huntsville, Huntsville, Ala 11967 

Randolph, Walter L., president, Alabama Farm Bureau Federation, Mont- 
gomery, Ala 12012 

Shelton, Barrett, editor, Decatur Daily, Decatur, Ala 12132, 12139 

Zuber, Ozborn, associate editor, Birmingham Age-Herald, Birmingham, 
Ala _ 12158 



Of Prepared Statements and Exhibits 


Abell, D. S., chief engineer and director, bureau of sanitation, Huntsville, 

Ala 11973 

Anderson, C. F., director for Alabama, United States Employment Service, 

Federal Security Agency, 711 High Street, Montgomery, Ala___ 12184, 12214 

Arnett, Mrs. Ruth R., director, department of public welfare, Lauderdale 

County, Florence, Ala 12249 

Austin, Dr. B. F., acting State health officer, department of public health, 

State of Alabama, Montgomery, Ala 12201 

Baumhauer, Charles A., mayor-president, board of commissioners, Mobile, 

Ala 12212 

Beech, Gould, editorial writer, Montgomery Advertiser, Montgomery, 

Ala 12135 

Brown, George D., superintendent, Madison County Board of Education, 

Huntsville, Ala 12223 

Bureau of Agricultural Economics, United States Department of Agri- 
culture, Washington, D. C 12315 

Coleman, A. Lee, Division of Land Economics, Bureau of Agricultural 

Economics, United States Department of Agriculture, Atlanta, Ga 12176 

Collins, A. H., State superintendent of education, State of Alabama, 

Montgomery, Ala 12197 

Cox, George M., executive editor, Mobile Register, Mobile, Ala 12137 

Dismukes, C. V., mayor, city of Prichard, Prichard, Ala 12223 

Ditto, Brig. Gen. R. C, commanding officer, Huntsville Arsenal, Hunts- 
ville, Ala 11954 

Dixon, Col. V. B., commanding officer, Brookley Field, Mobile, Ala 12216 

Dobbins, Charles, editor, Anniston Times, Anniston, Ala 12134 

Donehoo, C. A., superintendent of city schools, Gadsden, Ala 12228 

Doyle, Henry N., Talladega County Health Department, Talledega, Ala__ 12233 

Dugger, D. O., manager of properties, Muscle Shoals Area, Tennessee 

Valley Authority, Wilson Dam, Ala 12210 

Dunn, Dr. J. E., county health officer, Lauderdale County Department 
of Public Health, Florence, Ala 12248 

Dunn, Loula, commissioner of public welfare, State of Alabama, Mont- 
gomery, Ala 12202, 12204 

Enochs, Edgar S., city clerk, treasurer, city of Sheffield, Sheffield, Ala 12230 

Ferris, John P., director, commerce department, Tennessee Valley Au- 
thority, Knoxville, Tenn 12014 

Frazer, Dr. Emmett B., chairman, hospital committee, Mobile County 

Medical Society, Mobile, Ala 12219 

Gibbs, Virginia *C, Work Projects Administration, Decatur, Ala 12251 

Farm Security Administration, United States Department of Agriculture, 

Washington, D. C 12315 

Gregg, Robert, president, Tennessee Coal, Iron & Railroad Co., Birming- 
ham, Ala 2 12175 

Gregory, Maj. Gen. E. B., Quartermaster General's office, United States 

Army, War Department, Washington, D. C 12264 

Griggs, W. C, superintendent, Mobile public schools, Mobile, Ala 12217 

Griser, J. M., vice president, Alabama Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co., 

Mobile, Ala 12211 

Harper, Dr. R. E., county health officer, Colbert County Health Depart- 
ment, Tuscumbia, Ala 12235 

Hatchett, Dr. W. C, county health officer, Madison County, Huntsville, 

Ala 11974 

Henderson, W. G., State Work Projects administrator, Montgomery, Ala__ 12253 

Hill, Dr. J. H., county health officer, Talledega Countv Health Depart- 
ment, Talledega, Ala I 12232 



Hill, Harry, vice president, Gulf Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Mobile, 

Ala 12113 

Humphrey, Mrs. Walter, director, Madison County Department of Public 

Welfare, Huntsville, Ala 11982 

Jones, H. M., representing Cooper, Wells & Co., Decatur, Ala 12247 

Langworthy, Lt. Comdr. Elmer, port director, Mobile, Ala 12124 

Liles, John L., Jr., extension economist, Auburn, Ala 11996 

Lively, L. L., Alabama Hosiery Mills, Inc., Decatur, Ala 12246 

McAllister, A. W., mayor, Huntsville, Ala 11960 

McBride, E. A., superintendent, Talladega County Board of Education, 

Talledega, Ala 12231 

McGregor, Edward, chairman, county board of commissioners, Madison 

County, Huntsville, Ala 11963 

Meighan, chairman, city commission, Gadsden, Ala 12227 

Mitchell, H. L., general secretary, Southern Tenant Farmers Union, Mem- 
phis, Tenn 12099 

Morgan, E. S., director Region 5, Farm Security Administration, United 

States Department of Agriculture, Montgomery, Ala 12039, 12085 

Moseley, C C, superintendent, Anniston public schools, Anniston, Ala 12243 

Murphree, Dr. C. L., county health officer, Etowah County Health Depart- 
ment, Gadsden, Ala . 12229 

Nolan, Frank J., manager, Ingalls Shipbuilding Corporation, Decatur, 

Ala 12244 

Norment, E. M., district supervisor, United States Employment Service, 

Social Security Board, Federal Security Agency, Memphis, Tenn 12182 

Nunn, Alexander, managing editor, the Progressive Farmer, Birmingham, 

Ala 12169 

Porter, Rufus, superintendent of education, Colbert County, Tuscumbia, 

Ala 12237 

Reed, Mrs. W. O., director, department of public welfare, Colbert County, 

Tuscumbia, Ala 12239 

Robert, S. A., Jr., Division of Land Economics, Bureau of Agricultural 

Economics, United States Department of Agriculture, Atlanta, Ga 12176 

Rust, Mack D., Rust Cotton Picker Co., Memphis, Tenn 12179 

Shelton, Barrett, editor, Decatur Daily, Decatur, Ala 12132 

Smith, Brig. Gen. Ben M., State director, Selective Service System, Mong- 

gomery, Ala 12180 

Thompson, R. E., superintendent, Tuscumbia city schools, Tuscumbia, 

Ala 12234 

Varn, Charles F., secretary-manager, chamber of commerce, Anniston, 

Ala 12242 

Wage and Hour Division, Research and Statistics Branch, Department 

of Labor, Washington, D. C 12266 

Watwood, A. H., principal, Childersburg High School, Childersburg, Ala._ 12232 
Wittausch, W. K., Assistant Director, Division of Research and Statistics, 

Federal Housing Administration, Washington, D. C 12225 

Young, H. N., agricultural economist, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, 

Blacksburg, Va 12170 


THURSDAY, MAY 7, 1942 


House of Representatives, 
Select Committee Investigating 

National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 
The committee met at 10 a. m., May 7, 1942, in the Post Office 
Building, Himtsville, Ala., Hon. John H. Tolan, chairman of the com- 
mittee, presiding. 

Present: Representatives John H. Tolan, of California; Laurence 
F. Arnold, of Illinois; and John J. Sparkman, of Alabama. 

Also present: John W. Abbott, chief field investigator ; Jack B. Burke, 
field investigator; Francis X. Riley, field investigator; and Ruth B. 
Abrams, field secretary. 


The Chairman. The committee will please come to order. The first 
witnesses will be Brig. Gen. R. C. Ditto, commanding officer, Hunts- 
ville Arsenal, and Lt. Col. Carroll D. Hudson, commanding officer, 
Redstone Ordnance Plant, Himtsville. I want to say to you gentle- 
men that we appreciate your coming here this morning. What the 
committee would like to do is to get a bird's-eye view, for the 
record, of these projects here. We are a fact-finding committee. I 
want to introduce the members of the committee. I think you 
already know Congressman Sparkman who is to my left. He is rank- 
ing member of this committee, has been all over the United States 
with us, and I want to say to you and to the people here that we are 
very proud of Congressman Sparkman. He is one of the outstanding 
men in Congress and has performed valuable work with this committee. 
To my right is Congressman Arnold, of Illinois. He also has per- 
formed wonderful work and hasn't missed a meeting or a hearing. 
And, as chairman of the committee from California, all I can do is 
bring some of the California sunshine to Alabama. 

Now, gentlemen, tell us about this arsenal project here. General, 
when did you come here yourself? 

General Ditto. I came here the last of August, when the project 
was just getting under way. In fact, no work had then been done on 
the project. 



The Chairman. Where was your assignment before coming here? 

General Ditto. I was officer in charge of the Pittsburg Chemical 
Warfare Procurement. 

The Chairman. When did actual work start on this project? 

General Ditto. About the 1st of September 1941. 

The Chairman. Did the Government purchase the site? 

General Ditto. It did. 

The Chairman. What is the extent of the area? 

General Ditto. Including Redstone, 32,000 acres at that time. 

The Chairman. About how far is that from Huntsville? 

General Ditto. It is about 2% miles, that is from the nearest point 
of the arsenal to Huntsville. 

The Chairman. These questions are for the purpose of the record, 
General. Now you started in September. How has the progress 
been up to date? 

General Ditto. The progress has been very satisfactory. In fact, 
we are ahead of schedule, well ahead of schedule. 

The Chairman. Are there any buildings there? 

General Ditto. Quite a number. 

The Chairman. What is the percentage of completion there as it 
is today? 

General Ditto. About 80 percent complete on the original project. 

The Chairman. Are there a number of similar projects like the 
arsenal here in the United States? 

General Ditto. No, sir; there are not. We have only two other 
arsenals in addition to the Huntsville Arsenal. 

The Chairman. Now as to this question I am about to ask you, 
General, if there is anything that shouldn't be told, so far as giving 
any comfort to the enemy, don't say anything about it. But in gen- 
eral what is the Huntsville Arsenal? 

General Ditto. It is a manufacturing arsenal for certain basic 
materials for Chemical Warfare Service. 

The Chairman. And just what they are, we had better leave blank? 

General Ditto. I would suggest that. 

The Chairman. What problems, if any, have confronted you in 
regard to obtaining labor? 

General Ditto. I can't say we were confronted with any particular 
problems. We have always been able to get the required amount of 
labor, so far as construction is concerned. 

The Chairman. Did you have any difficulty in obtaining skilled 
labor? . 

General Ditto. I think not. I wasn't in close touch with that. 
That was the problem of the area engineer. But from what he told 
me, we have had little trouble. There was a short period when there 
was a difficulty on pay rates. Our rates were lower than those of 
surrounding projects, but those rates were raised and that solved the 

The Chairman. What is the number of your personnel? 
General Ditto. The personnel for construction is about 7,000. 
Ours is about 800 at the present time. 

The Chairman. You mean 7,000 construction workers? 
General Ditto. Yes, sir; and employees for Chemical Warfare 
Service, 800 at the present time. 


The Chairman. That is a pretty good showing. You had to start 
from scratch. 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; when I came here there wasn't even a 
mark on the ground. 


The Chairman. Tell me about farm displacements in taking the 
32,000 acres, whether or not you had any difficulties. First, were 
any farmers displaced? 

General Ditto. I don't recall the exact number of families, but I 
think in the neighborhood of between 400 and 500. So far as the 
arsenal authorities are concerned, we had no difficulty about it. 
Of course, I admit we kept pushing. But the relocation service 
handled it very well and kept getting these people out, and there 
wasn't any incident of any kind that occurred in moving these people. 

The Chairman. The relocation service is a separate department? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. They take care of that? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. They report to you? 

General Ditto. No, sir; they just reported to me, so far as that is 
concerned, on how many were left at a certain time, and how many 
were to get off at another time, and when they were finally all removed. 

The Chairman. Do they clear through Congress? 

General Ditto. I don't know. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is part of the Farm Security Administration. 


The Chairman. What about housing, General? 
. General Ditto. We have had a housing problem here, it is true. 
We managed to accommodate our workers at the top of our peak 
employment, which was around 12,000 workers on the project, and 
they were taken care of. How, I don't know. Probably nobody 
could answer that. It is true we have had lots of complaints about 
rentals, and on the other hand we had reports of very fair rentals. 
The rental situation here was no different from any other at like 
projects throughout the country, in my opinion. 

The Chairman. This committee visited several of these projects in 
the United States, probably one of the largest being at San Diego. 
This project at San Diego is about 6 miles from town. They are put- 
ting up 3,000 housing units. Of course, there are housing problems. 

Do many of your employees live here in Huntsville? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; quite a number. And I will say this, the 
housing facilities of Hunstville have been considerably expanded by 
private individuals, and that is the only way, I think, these people 
could have been accommodated. 

The Chairman. I drove south with Congressman Sparkman and I 
noticed what looked to me like hundreds of houses going up. 

General Ditto. I think those houses are going up under Federal 
Housing Authority, title 6. We have 703 set up for Huntsville. 


The Chairman. Are any of the employees housed near the arsenal 
plant or on the reservation? 

General Ditto. A very small number. We had a number of 
houses left and picked out the best and allowed some of our employees 
to move into them. We also have five married officers quartered out 
there in houses we repaired and turned over to them. But I would 
say we haven't more than 35 or 40 families on the reservation at the 
present time. 

The Chairman. The rest are housed in Huntsville? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Huntsville must have increased in population 

General Ditto. There is no question but that it has. Just what 
number we get direct from Huntsville and what number we get from 
surrounding towns, I couldn't say. 


The Chairman. Is any new housing positively contemplated here? 
A gentleman was telling me about some new demountable houses. 

General Ditto. Of that so-called temporary housing, I am antici- 
pating 250 to 300 units of that, but we won't have any definite infor- 
mation as to that until the end of this week. 

The Chairman. Have you any opinion as to the advisability of 
demountable houses? 

General Ditto. I think it would be all right. That is what we are 
considering at the present time. 

The Chairman. While we have got to win this war, we have got 
to think about the post-war period, too. It is a question of a 
city Huntsville's size absorbing 8,000 or 10,000 permanent homes. 
And that is a problem throughout the country, as I understand it. 
I was asking that question because so many people advocate the 
demountable houses, while others say it is not a good use. 

General Ditto. Of course it is true that demountable houses aren't 
the best houses. We haven't made up our minds whether we are 
going into it or not, but we are investigating it at the present time. 

The Chairman. I think you will agree with me that the tendency 
of people who have moved here from Nebraska, Oklahoma, and 
California, and any other place is always to go back home, if conditions 
are as good there as they are here? 

General Ditto. There is no doubt about it. 

The Chairman. This committee is giving considerable attention to 
the post-war period for that reason. 

Colonel, you have heard General Ditto. Is there anything you 
want to add? 

Colonel Hudson. I think the General has stated the case as I 
see it. 

Mr. Sparkman. You said you were expecting 250 to 300 of the 
houses to be announced soon. Now, some of these houses have al- 
ready been authorized at Redstone? 

Colonel Hudson. That is my understanding. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is the temporary type, too? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir; 300, I understand. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is just outside the ordnance plant? 


Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many operating employees do you have now? 

Colonel Hudson. I believe it figures a little over 600 at the present 

Mr. Sparkman. General, when you said the project was 80 percent 
complete, did that include the ordnance plant? 

General Ditto. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about the ordnance plant? 

Colonel Hudson. It is substantially completed; I would say in the 
neighborhood of 95 percent. 


The Chairman. I wonder what percentage of the construction labor 
was white labor and what percentage was colored? 

General Ditto. I don't believe I can answer that question very 
accurately, but I can get the information. We have employed quite 
a lot of colored labor. 

The Chairman. The colored labor has been mostly unskilled labor; 
is that correct? 

General Ditto. I would say they are. I have observed colored 
bricklayers at work. That is the only colored skilled labor I have 

The Chairman. Will colored employees be used in the completed 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; we will have a certain number, and because 
the manpower situation has changed some of our plans and may 
change more, we may have to switch to 80 or 90 percent colored. 

The Chairman. Do you anticipate employing women? 

General Ditto. Not over 20 percent. 

The Chairman. Will those be white women? 

General Ditto. Both white and colored. 

Mr. Sparkman. I would like to put this question to both you and 
Colonel Hudson. Have you had any trouble recruiting your supply 
of operating labor? 

General Ditto. I haven't, but we have reached out pretty far and 
got complaints from industry. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is it the same with you, Colonel? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir; that is the case with me, too. 

Mr. Sparkman. All of your workers in both plants are Civil Service 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. And they do have to qualify through Civil Service 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has there been any restriction as to area — I know 
your examinations are advertised in a restricted area — but anybody is 
eligible from anywhere? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir, 

Mr. Sparkman. You do try to get them from as short a radius as 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; and we prefer them from right here. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you trained most of these people? I believe 
training courses were put on in the schools prior to employment? 


General Ditto. I know they were, but I don't know that we have 
benefited materially from them, for the courses as they were con- 
ducted last year didn't fit in. 

Mr. Sparkman. The skills they taught were general, and yours 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is that true with you, Colonel? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir; that is true, and you might say we 
trained our men on the job, job training. We hold classes at the plant 
to give them a little broader knowledge of the problems they have. 

Mr. Sparkman. What has been the aptitude shown by these people? 
Have they taken to the training readily? 

adaptability of southern labor 

Colonel Hudson. I would say on the average that is the case. 
They have adapted themselves very readily. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is that true in your plant, General? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. It might be interesting to you gentlemen to know 
that about 3% years ago I went to the White House and talked to the 
President about the building of a chemical warfare arsenal. In that 
discussion — it was when Baker was Chief of the Chemical Warfare 
Service — the President told me that this area was a good area for 
another arsenal except for one thing, that we could never supply the 
labor, that we didn't have skilled labor in here that could operate the 
plant. I have got a great kick out of some of the reactions we have 
during these years and during this war program from different officials. 
It has been recognized finally that, even though our labor may not 
have been classified as skilled, it was adaptable and there has been no 
difficulty in this area generally with reference to employment of 
operating labor. 

The Chairman. I want to say, General, in that regard that if the 
people at home only realized what the pressure on Congressmen in 
these days in reference to projects is like, it would be a fine thing. 
It took Congressman Sparkman about 4 years to get his message 
over, and he was always there on the job. And I think it has proven 
a fine thing. 

Does the appropriation for the arsenal and ordnance plant come 
out of the general War Department appropriation? 

General Ditto. Part of this money was for expediting procure- 
ment; part of it was that, and the other part, as I recall it, was War 
Department appropriations. 


The Chairman. What will it cost; that is, both plants, approxi- 

General Ditto. At the present time we have set up $65,000,000, 
and we will be well within that amount of money. The original 
arsenal was a $31,000,000 set-up. And there were, as I recall it, 
about $7,000,000 or $8,000,000 held in reserve, and we haven't 
touched the reserve to date. Now the additions of Redstone and the 
main arsenal are going to run well within those figures, too. 


The Chairman. The ordnance is separate? 
General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. What will that run, Colonel? 

Colonel Hudson. About $8,000,000, and that is exclusive of the 
land . 


The Chairman. Tell me, General, how you go about hiring labor. 
Say, for instance, you want 100 construction men, how do you get 
them ; what are the mechanics of it? 

General Ditto. I don't know that I can answer that question 
very well. As I say, I didn't enter into the construction picture so 
far as labor is concerned. I don't know what methods the contractors 

The Chairman. That was done by the contractors? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; they have their own methods and labor 
pool and handled skilled labor as well as common labor. 

The Chairman. How do you get men for your plant? 

General Ditto. We have civil service; say we have 100 to 150 
names on the register, we would go to the register and ask these 
people if they wanted to come in, and they say yes or no. 

The Chairman. Do you clear through the United States Civil 
Service Commission in Washington? 

General Ditto. No, sir; only if we want someone in the profes- 
sional class. 

The Chairman. You have your own local board? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Of course, the salaries are fixed by law? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. What about construction people, did they have any 
wage disputes? 

General Ditto. As I recall, there was no dispute with the exception 
of one or two minor incidents. 

The Chairman. Did it retard the work seriously? 

General Ditto. No, sir; it didn't. I don't recall whether the trouble 
was with the plumbers or electricians, but other projects in surround- 
ing areas were paying a higher rate than we were paying, and that was 
adjusted. Until we got it adjusted that skilled labor didn't want to 
come in. That was the trouble. 


Mr. Abbott. General Ditto and Colonel Hudson, if you can, please 
indicate to the committee the approximate employment at peak pro- 
duction at your plants? 

General Ditto. At the present time I anticipate there will be 5,000 
for the three shifts. 

Mr. Abbott. What about yours, Colonel? 

Colonel Hudson. I anticipate 3,000. 

Mr. Abbott. That will make 8,000 all told? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Abbott. Do you have any tables or anything that would be 
useful to the committee's record as to average income or a break-down 
of income? 

60396— 42— pt. 32 2 


General Ditto. I don't know if we have any, but we could prob- 
ably furnish you a general break-down, as we see it now, within a 
certain salary range. 

Mr. Abbott. What I was trying to do was establish the income as 
between available rentals. And in that connection I was thinking 
of another city where we were holding a hearing. There were some 
F. H. A. homes that had been offered for sale and there had been a 
certain reluctance on the part of the production workers to take them, 
in that they couldn't be certain that it would last beyond the war. 
Have you had any experience like that? 

General Ditto. I don't think we have got that far on housing. As 
I understand it, the greater number of the houses will be rented. 


Mr. Abbott. Do you have any figures on the average rentals? 

General Ditto. We can furnish you with the figures. Some Fed- 
eral Housing Administration houses rent for $40, some for $50. I 
think it is $40, $42.50, and $50. 

Mr. Abbott. That is for new property? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Abbott. Would that be the same with you, Colonel Hudson? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir; you spoke of some figures. We have 
some figures that may be interesting to the committee indicating 
the percentage of employees who we expect to be within Huntsville, 
Ala., that is, residents, against those that are coming in from certain 
areas from the outside, within a 25-mile radius and a 75-mile radius; 
and also the percentage of men against women; also the wages avail- 
able. That can be made available if you want it. 

The Chairman. If I may make this suggestion — it is impossible 
for you gentlemen to remember those figures specifically, and the 
committee will have Mr. Abbott contact you if we think we need 
them for the purpose of the record to compare them against wages 
received by other workers in different parts of the country. 

(The material referred to was received subsequent to the hearing 
and accepted for the record.) 

Headquarters Huntsville Arsenal, 

Chemical Warfare Service, 
Huntsville Arsenal, Ala., May 27, 1942. 
Hon. John H. Tolan, 

House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. 
Dear Mr. Tolan: In compliance with request contained in your letter of 
May 19, 1942, the following information, as far as could be determined, is sub- 
mitted : 

(a) Total production employment. — To date there are 180 women and 877 men 
employed by the Chemical Warfaie Service at Huntsville Arsenal, consisting of 
the following classifications: 












$1, 440. 00 
2, 600. 00 
1, 440. 00 
600. 00 
1, 080. 00 
1, 260. 00 
1, 500. 00 
1, 500. 00 
1, 200. 00 
1, 200. 00 
1, 860. 00 

2, 000. 00 



Per day 





Chemical plant workmen 

Chemical plant operators 







Senior machinery operator 

Senior radio mechanic techni- 





Chemical plant foreman 

Munitions handler foreman 



(b) Anticipated employment at peak production. — It is estimated that approxi- 
mately 5,000 employees will comprise the personnel at this station when in full 

(c) Percentage of personnel according to points of origin. — According to present 
figures, 85 percent of the personnel employed at Huntsville Arsenal (Chemical 
Warfare Service) live in the immediate vicinity of Huntsville and 15 percent 
commute within a radius of from 25 to 75 miles. Employees originate from the 
following States: 







New York 

North Carolina. 





















South Carolina- 







Pennsylvania. . 



. 7 
. 7 
. 7 



(d) Rental chart of homes and apartments in Huntsville area. — According to sta- 
tistics furnished this office by the Huntsville Chamber of Commerce, the follow- 
ing rents prevailed prior to the beginning of the construction of the arsenal: 

Furnished apartments $35 to $45 per month. 

Unfurnished apartments $25 to $30 per month. 

Furnished houses $35 to $45 per month. 

Unfurnished houses $22.50 to $30 per month. 

The present average rentals of homes in the Huntsville area are as follows ■ 

Furnished apartments 1 $60 to $75 per month. 

Unfurnished apartments $40 to $50 per month. 

Furnished houses $60 to $75 per month. 

Unfurnished houses $50 to $60 per month. 

If I can furnish you or the committee any additional information, please let 
me know. 

Very sincerely, 

R. C. Ditto, 
Brigadier General, United States Army, 



Average income report as of May 1, 1942 

of workers 





$2, 510. 28 




990. 00 



Mr. Sparkman. How many trailers are being used around here? 

General Ditto. On the Farm Security area, I suppose there are 
400 trailers. There are a number of private trailer parks. 

Mr. Sparkman. Would you think there were about 700 or 800 
trailers, all told? 

General Ditto. I would say at least that, probably 800. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has there been any trouble with reference to 
transportation of workers because of rubber shortage? 

General Ditto. No, sir; not yet. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has there been any planning as to that problem? 

transportation of workers 

General Ditto. What I am anticipating is getting busses and if 
we do, we will try to get the workers on the northeast corner of the 
arsenal grounds and we will move them by bus from that place. 

Mr. Sparkman. You have a similar arrangement in mind, Colonel? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir. Last month I was asked for a detailed 
report from Chief of Ordnance, and we submitted that as of the last 
day of last month. In that report I outlined our investigations on 
transportation that has to go on rubber and transportation that could 
be handled by rail. We have rail connections to the plant, of 
course. And we have included that in our study. 

Mr. Sparkman. You haven't started any rail transportation yet? 

Colonel Hudson. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. To either plant? 

General Ditto. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do busses operate to the arsenal and ordnance 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do most workers come by bus or drive their own 
cars? _ . 

Colonel Hudson. Most of them drive. There is a bus shortage. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have they started the pooling of their cars? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir; they are all afraid of their tires. 


Mr. Sparkman. I have noticed with much interest in the Hunts- 
ville Times a report of a voluntary savings plan throughout the city 
by pav-roll deductions for the purpose of buying war bonds. I have 


noticed that is being worked throughout the two plants. It is on a 
wholly voluntary basis, of course? 

General Ditto. Absolutely. 

Mr. Sparkman. If these workers sign an agreement that a certain 
percentage of their pay be deducted, you automatically deduct it at 
the end of each week or each pay period? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are they coming in pretty well? 

General Ditto. We have just got started recently. But, so far as 
I can see, they are. 

Colonel Hudson. It looks promising. 

Mr. Sparkman. There has been a great agitation throughout the 
country and it is something that the country as a whole, and Congress 
feel that if it could not be worked out, something ought to be done, 
and that is a kind of enforced savings plan. Of course there are 
legal and constitutional difficulties connected with it, and it seems to 
me that if this voluntary plan could be put into effect throughout the 
country, we could do a lot to stave off inflation and cushion the drop 
when it comes. 

About what deductions do they authorize? 

General Ditto. That I don't loiow. I know of a few cases where 
people will buy two bonds, $18.75, that is, a $25 bond each pay day. 

Mr. Sparkman. In other words, twice a month? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. I told my bond officers we didn't want 
any pressure put on any of the people, because we didn't know what 
other obligations they had to meet, and I felt they were all patriotic 
and I didn't feel it right to put pressure on them. They are doing 
very well so far. 

The Chairman. Of course, the trouble with compulsory savings is 
that no two families are alike. What one family can spare doesn't 
necessarily mean it is what another family could spare. 

General Ditto. That is true. 


The Chairman. This committee tried to explore that. I remem- 
ber we had a witness on the stand with a wife and six children. I 
have always had the idea that after all was said and done, that these 
workers in the United States, who have left their own home State 
and have gone into another to get a job, should put some of their 
earnings into savings. I think that will be a real cushion, because 
nobody knows what will be the situation at the end of this war. 
And if these workers had $500 or $600 or $1,000 put away to protect 
them, it would be a splendid thing. But getting back to the witness 
I was speaking of who had a wife and six children. I was exploring 
that line with him, and I said, "Are you saving any money?" And 
he said, "How can I? I am charged $80 a month rent for a two- 
room house and out of $135, how can I save?" The story went all 
over the United States, and they formed a rent committee and got 
after the landlord. 

About how many rooms are in these houses, General? 

General Ditto. That depends. They are not uniform. I can't 
tell you the range of the rooms. But the $40 houses will bave the 


smaller rooms and the smaller number of rooms than the $50 houses. 
In the temporary houses we are considering, there is one bedroom and 
a combination of living and dining room, or two bedrooms. We will 
have to get some with two bedrooms, of course, to accomodate some 
of the families. But the two-bedroom houses will be the maximum 
for these temporary houses. 

The Chairman. I will never forget this man with the wife and six 
children. We traced him from Oklahoma through the different States 
until he arrived in California, to see how he got along, what were the 
State barriers, and what difficulties he went through. So I said to 
him finally, "In traveling from Oklahoma to California, I would like 
to know where you slept, the eight of you?" And he said, "We 
always had a 10 by 14 tent that we slept in." And I said, "I suppose 
you had the latest sanitary conveniences in that tent." And he said, 
"No, Mr. Congressman ; we had the earliest." 

(The following letters were handed the reporter as illustrating the 
problem and were accepted for the record.) 

Huntsville, Ala. 
Lieutenant Lane, 

Huntsville Arsenal, Huntsville, Ala. 

Dear Sir: I am writing you regarding the position as senior radio technician 
at the arsenal. 

After spending 2 days in Huntsville looking for a suitable place to live, we find 
that we will be unable to meet the high prices asked. Because of this, I will have 
to pass up this opportunity to work for you. 

Charles Peterson. 

Headquarters Huntsville Arsenal, 

Chemical Warfare Service, 
Huntsville Arsenal, Ala., September 11, 1941. 
Commanding Officer, 

Huntsville Arsenal, Ala. 
(Through Property Officer). 
I hereby submit my resignation as clerk-typist CAF-2 to take effect on Sep- 
tember 15, 1941, at close of business. 

My reason for doing so is as follows: I have two children for whom I am the 
sole support, and can find no place to live for myself and children within my 

Evelyn B. Grayton. 

[First endorsement] 
Property Officer. 

Huntsville Arsenal, Ala., September 11, 19^2. 
To Commanding Officer, Huntsville Arsenal, Ala. 
Recommending approval without prejudice. 

Replacement is — is not requested -. 

Wm. L. Van Hay. 

For the Commanding Officer. 

J. F. Lane. 
Second Lieutenant, CWS, Adjutant. 



Headquarters Huntsville Arsenal, 

Chemical Warfare Service, 
Huntsville Arsenal, Ala., January 22, 1941. 
To Commanding Officer, 

Huntsville Arsenal, Ala.: 
I hereby submit my resignation as assistant chemical engineer to take effect on 
January 22 (close of business 21). 

My reason for doing so is as follows: It is impossible to obtain housing in 

Clyde A. Benn. 
[First endorsement] 

Huntsville Arsenal, Ala., January 21, 1942. 
To Commanding Officer, 

Huntsville Arsenal, Ala.: 
1. Recommending approval. 
Replacement is requested. 

W. J. Ungetheum, 
Lieutenant Colonel, Chemical Warfare, Chief of Operations. 

Date: January 21, 1942. Approved. 
For the Commanding Officer: 

J. F. Lane, 
First Lieutenant, Chemical Warfare Service, Adjutant. 

Mr. Sparkman. I would like to ask you this question. You told 
us the number of employees you would have for three shifts, when you 
get into peak production. Does that mean continuous operation? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Sparkman. How many hours a week do they work? 

General Ditto. Seven days a week. 

Mr. Sparkman. I mean the personnel? 

General Ditto. At the present time we are on the 40-hour week, 
and later we will be required to work 48. We will then work 48 and 
have a swing shift. 

Mr. Sparkman. These are all Civil Service employees? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Do they get time and a half for all time over 40 

Mr. Sparkman. 
hours per week? 
General Ditto. 
Mr. Sparkman. 

Yes, sir. 

In other words, the regular workweek is 40 hours 
and they get regular pay for that, and then time and a half for the 
other 8 hours.? 

Yes, sir. 

There is no extra time for holidays and Sundays? 

No; that is regular work time. 

That swing shift will give 

vou con turn ous 

General Ditto. 

Mr. Sparkman. 

General Ditto. 

Mr. Sparkman. 

General Ditto. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. And that is true at your plant? 

Colonel Hudson. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Are you having difficulty in getting necessary 
material in here for these plants? 

General Ditto. Yes, sir; some difficulty. Of course, some of our 
difficulty has been brought about by the Navy. The Navy has taken 
some of the equipment we wanted. 


The Chairman. Has that slowed you up to any extent? 
General Ditto. No; not on the whole. 

The Chairman. You have priority over everything but the Navy? 
General Ditto. Not quite. We have some very high priorities 
and some low priorities. But we have got along very well. 
The Chairman. You are not taking the worst of it? 
General Ditto. No, sir. 
The Chairman. The Army never does. 
We are very grateful to have both of you here this morning. 


The Chairman. We will now call the Huntsville civic panel, 
Mr. A. W. McAllister, Mr. Edward McGregor, Mr. N. M. Payne, 
Dr. W. C. Hatchett, and Mrs. Walter Humphrey. 

Mr. Payne. Mayor McAllister is ill and couldn't come down this 

Mr. Sparkman. That is right. He called and said he was ill and 
Mr. Payne would represent him. 

The Chairman. We have a statement from Mayor McAllister, 
which we shall place in the record at this point. 

(The statement is as follows:) 



Report on the City of Huntsville 

The City of Huntsville, Ala., is operated under mayor and council form of 
government. It has a mayor, president of the council, and 2 aldermen from 
each of 4 wards, making a total of 10 elected officials. These officials were 
elected in September 1940 and their terms will expire on the first Monday in 
October 1944. 

Attached hereto and made a part of this report is a financial statement of the 
city of Huntsville. 1 Also attached is a statement of the city's revenue for the 
last fiscal year and a statement of the anticipated revenue for the current year. 


This city has a constitutional tax limit of 15 mills. In addition there is a debt 
limit of 7 percent of its assessed valuation. Bonds issued for sewers, schools, and 
those that are payable in whole or in a part from public improvement assessments 
are not chargeable against this debt limit. There is also excluded from this debt 
limit temporary loans not exceeding 25 percent of the anticipated general revenue, 
provided such loans are made in anticipation of the collection of taxes and are 
payable within 1 year from date of issue. 

The city is now levying 14% mills of its 15-mill limit. The taxes now levied are 
for the following purposes: 5 mills for general purposes, 5 mills for general bonds 
and bond interest, 4.25 mills for bonds issued for school buildings, 0.25 mill for 
bonds issued for sanitary sewers. 

There is only one-half mill that is not being levied, and this cannot be levied 
except by a majority vote of the electors of the city, who must also determine the 
length of time for which it shall be levied. 

The city has increased certain privilege licenses which will bring in additional 
revenue during the current year. However, in September 1941, the people voted 
out liquor in Madison County and the city's revenue will be decreased about 
$30,000 per year on account of the loss of revenue from this source. 

Increased revenue should be received from the city during this year from its 
waterworks on account of the additional customers now being served. However, 
it has become necessary for the city to install additional pumping equipment, 

1 Held in committee files. 



purchase new meters and meter boxes, which probably will cost more than the 
increased revenue during this fiscal year, but the city should feel the effect of this 
increased revenue during its next fiscal year. 

No taxes are collected in the police jurisdiction. The city does collect licenses 
from businesses, from occupations and professions in the police jurisdiction in an 
amount equivalent to 50 percent of the rates charged in the city limits. These 
licenses are collected for the purpose of furnishing police and fire protection 
in the police jurisdiction. Although no records are kept of expenses of this 
police and fire protection, it is believed that the expense of this protection exceeds 
the revenue derived from business licenses jn the police jurisdiction. 

The officials of the city have not made any particular survey of the housing and 
rent situation. Several branches of the Federal Government have made such 
survey, we are informed, and the Huntsville Housing Authority has gone into the 
matter of housing. (See analysis of building permits attached hereto.) 

Many houses are being built within the police jurisdiction of the city but very 
few are being built within the city limits. There is sufficient vacant property 
within the city to allow the construction of many houses but only a few tracts of 
land are suitable for mass building. 


There are no present plans to expand the city limits. The city limits can only 
be extended upon vote of the people now residing without the city limits who 
desire to attach themselves to and become a part of the city of Huntsville. 

If the city limits were extended, the city would receive additional revenue 
from ad valorem taxes and business licenses on that part brought within the city 
and the extension would automatically extend the police jurisdiction. Then the 
city would receive indirect taxes from automobile tags and insurance premiums 
from that new addition to the city. Some of the licenses collected by the city 
are graduated on a population basis but this would not increase the revenue very 
much. If the city limits are extended the residents affected thereby would expect 
and should receive the same services now rendered to the residents of Huntsville. 
As to whether or not extension of the city limits would be an asset from a financial 
standpoint can only be determined by a careful survey of the territory desiring 
to be annexed. 


In regard to facilities of health, the city has no separate health department but 
contributes to the State health department. Madison County also contributes 
to the State health department so the local health department represents the 
State, county, and city. 

Regarding the schools of the city, they are operated by the city board of educa- 
tion, composed of five members elected by the city council. Mr. C. S. Boswell 
is chairman of this board and Mr. W. G. Hamm is superintendent of the schools. 

City of Huntsville— General fund revenue, fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 1941 


General taxes $29,599.00 

A. B. C. store profits. . 31, 396. 49 

Taxes electric system. 2-1, 000. 00 

Automobile licenses 7. 936. 01 

Water collections 89, 144. 37 

Abattoir receipts 4, 437. 43 

Electrical permits 301. 00 

Cemetery receipts 5, 114. 10 

Scale receipts 92. 50 

Recorders' court fines. 21, 098. 76 

Privilege licenses 54, 937. 63 

Building permits 708. 03 

Source — Continued. 

Water penalties 


Pool admissions 

Pool concessions 

Plumbers' fees 

Sundry revenue 9, 583. 93 

Repair shop charges.. 1, 758. 15 

Sign permits 

Cash discount and 

$71. 50 

267. 37 

2, 366. 50 

1, 126. 20 

684. 25 


959. 92 

Total revenue. 

285, 639. 14 



City of Huntsville — General Fund Budget for fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 194% 



General taxes $27, 500 

A. B. C. store profits 2, 500 

Taxes electric system 24, 000 

Automobile licenses 8, 500 

Water collections 92, 500 

Abattoir receipts 5, 000 

Electrical permits 1, 200 

Cemetery receipts 5, 000 

Scale receipts. 
Recorder's court fines. 

Privilege licenses 

Building permits 

Water penalties 


16, 000 

65, 000 



Source — Continued. 


Pool admissions 

Pool concessions 

Plumbers fees 

Sundry revenue 

Repair shop charges. _ 

Sign permits 

Cash discounts and 





Total anticipated rev- 
enue 264,025 

Building permits issued Aug. 1, 1941, to Feb. 14, 1942 



$100 to $500 33 

$500 to $1,000. _ 
$1,000 to $2,000. 
$2,000 to $3,000. 
$3,000 to $4,000. 
$5,000 to $6,000. 

Cost — Continued. 
$7,000 to $8,000. 

Permits for repairs on resi- 
dences 135 

The Chairman. Congressman Sparkman will interrogate this panel. 

Mr. Sparkman. For the benefit of the record, the Huntsville civic 
panel is composed of Mr. Edward McGregor, chairman, county- 
board of commissioners; Mrs. Walter Humphrey, director, Madison 
County Department of Public Welfare ; TVir. Norris M. Payne, clerk- 
treasurer, city of Huntsville; and Dr. W. C. Hatchett, Madison 
County health officer. 

Mr. McGregor, I don't know why this habit ever developed, unless 
somebody was a Presbyterian, but they call on somebody to act as a 
moderator, and you have been designated moderator for this panel. 
Although I will have some questions directed to a particular person, 
I hope you will all feel free to make any suggestions or contributions 
that you may care to in the course of this investigation. Personally, 
I think we all get much more out of it, if we make it an informal, 
round-table talk. So, if anyone of you feel an urge to say something, 
please feel perfectly free to do so. 


Mr. Sparkman. Edward [Mr. McGregor], I would like to ask you 
some questions. We shall introduce the statement you have furnished 
at this point in the record. 

(The statement is as follows:) 



Report on Madison County, Ala. 

The revenue of Madison County, Ala., is derived from several sources. These 
revenues are allocated and paid into two funds, viz, the general fund and the 
special building, bridges, and road fund. 

The revenues of the general fund result chiefly from a 5-mill ad valorem tax on 
real estate, personal property, and automobiles; also auto license, privilege license, 
mortgage taxes, etc. A sales tax fund, derived from our portion of a State sales 
tax, is earmarked for the extension service, health department, and welfare depart- 
ment. This revenue can be used for no other purpose. Seventy percent of the 
receipts of the general fund come from ad valorem tax, the remaining 30 percent 
from other revenues. 

The revenue of the special building, bridges, and road fund comes from a 2^- 
mill ad valorem tax, a 3-cents-per-gallon county gasoline tax, and a part of the 
State gasoline tax. Ad valorem tax accounts for about 15 percent of the total 
revenue of this fund and the remaining 85 percent comes from the gas tax receipts. 

The acquisition of some 32,000 acres of land by the Huntsville Arsenal reduced 
the assessment roll by the sum of $409,080, resulting in a loss to the various county 
funds as follows: 

County general fund $2, 045. 40 

Special building bridges and roads 1, 022. 70 

County-wide school 1, 636. 32 

District school 1, 227. 24 

Total reduction 5, 931. 66 

However, from a careful study of the tax assessor's records, I am convinced 
that additional assessments by reason of new buildings being erected and placed 
in the tax rolls, and increased assessments resulting from property exchanges, 
will replace any loss resulting from loss of assessments in property acquired by 
the Huntsville Arsenal. 

There has been no general revision upward in the valuation of real estate in 
Madison County for tax purposes. The tax assessor and the board of equaliza- 
tion agreed that it was impossible to say that the general increase in value of 
property in Madison County was of a permanent nature, so it was decided to 
allow present valuations, generally, stand. Since this policy had been adopted, 
I do not anticipate any appreciable reduction in the receipts from ad valorem tax 
on real estate, in the near future. 

We do anticipate a drastic reduction in ad valorem tax based on automobile 

We also expect the revenue of the special buildings, bridges, and roads fund 
to be reduced to the danger point by reason of losses in the gasoline tax. 

The general fund receives approximately $18,000 per year from auto licenses. 
This will, in all probability, be greatly reduced. 

If material and labor were available, a general increase in building and improve- 
ments of property would result in some further increase in ad valorem taxes. 

We have been called upon to spend large sums of money in the construction of 
access roads to the Huntsville Arsenal, as well as to maintain other roads used 
by the employees of the arsenal in going to and from their work. This extra 
expense has put an additional strain on our resources. When our funds are 
materially reduced, we will be unable to maintain our present road system properly. 

Our health department was forced to ask for an increase in their budget of 
$2,000 per year, brought about by increased demand resulting from the construc- 
tion of the Huntsville Arsenal. We have received recently from them a request 
for an additional appropriation of $1,300. 

The board of commissioners has no control over educational funds, these being 
derived from special taxes, and administered by county and city boards of 

Our health department works under the United States Public Health Service 
and the State health department, and their revenue comes from these sources, 
viz: Madison County, State of Alabama, and the United States Public Health 
Service. We have no control over the health department. 


The welfare department is operated by the county welfare board, which is 
appointed by our county board of commissioners, and operates with a budget 
largely furnished by the county, a small amount from the city of Huntsville, and 
matching funds from the State and Federal Governments. The director of the 
welfare department is reporting in detail with reference to the operation of this 

Mr. Sparkman. Will you give us some idea of the amount of land 
that Madison County has lost from its tax rolls within recent years, I 
would say the last 5 years, which include the taking hy the Tennessee 
Valley Authority and the two recent plants? 


Mr. McGregor. The takings by the Tennessee Valley Authority 
and Huntsville Arsenal approximate 50,000 acres. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many acres in the county? 

Mr. McGregor. I am not sure. 

Mr. Sparkman. Four hundred thousand acres, something like that? 

Mr. McGregor. Dr. Hatchett says there are 811 square miles. 

Mr. Sparkman. About 500,000 acres then. Those 50,000 acres 
taken by the arsenal were some of the very best lands in the county? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Some of the highest priced land? 

Mr. McGregor. I wouldn't say the very highest priced, but some 
of the most productive. 

Mr. Sparkman. Can you give me some idea of what that amounts 
to in tax revenue? 

Mr. McGregor. The assessments here are for 60 percent and that 
doesn't indicate its real value. But on that part taken by the arsenal 
it was $409,000. I haven't the exact figures on the Tennessee Valley 
Authority land. 

Mr. Sparkman. You mean $409,000 was the assessed valuation? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What is the county rate? 

Mr. McGregor. It is divided up, the county general tax is 5 mills, 
that is 50 cents a hundred, and building of bridges 2% mills or 25 cents, 
and county schools is 4 mills or 40 cents, and district school is 3 mills 
or 30 cents. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is that county-wide? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes; these taxes are uniform over the county. 

Mr. Sparkman. Each district of the county has that tax? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are those the only county taxes? 

Mr. McGregor. They are the only ad valorem taxes. 

Mr. Sparkman. $1.45? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. I would like to say our rate in California is $4.85. 
What is it for the State? 

Mr. McGregor. That is 65 cents. Do you want that divided? 

The Chairman. No, sir. What is the city tax? 

Mr. Payne. $1.45. 

Mr. Sparkman. These lands taken by the projects were not in the 

Mr. Payne. No, sir; none in the city. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is $3.55, isn't it? 


Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir; and we have a homestead exemption of 
$2,000 on State taxes. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is where a person lived in the State for a year 
prior to October 1? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir; but that doesn't affect county or city 


Mr. Sparkman. How does the county compensate itself for that 
loss in revenue? 

Mr. McGregor. The only compensation we have is through taxes 
on new buildings, taxes on improvements to old buildings, and also 
on exchanges of property, of which we have had a great deal. 

Mr. Sparkman. How does that affect the loss iD revenue? 

Mr. McGregor. I think it will just about offset the loss of taxes 
on the $409,000 valuation. 

Mr. Sparkman. These new homes going up, that go on your tax 
rolls, you think that will be an offset? 

Mr. McGregor. I checked the rolls that have not been com- 
pleted and talked to Mr. Darwin, who is our tax assessor, and we 
both came to the conclusion that the increase would just about offset 
the loss. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course your operating cost is cut some when 
that area is taken? 

decrease in operating costs 

Mr. McGregor. We will have some cut in the operating cost on 
the roads there, but the operating costs on the other roads have in- 
creased, and all these housing projects are outside the city limits. 
So we will have an increase for the maintenance of streets there which 
will be all out of proportion to the tax revenue. 

The Chairman. The arsenal is outside the city? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about your increase in public facilities? 
You have mentioned maintaining streets and roads in the new housing 
projects. Are there any other increases in the cost of operation, 
public health, for instance? Has Dr. Hatchett asked you for an 
increase in appropriations? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir; we were asked for an increased appro- 
priation of $2,000 and in addition $1,300 that was in excess of the 

Mr. Sparkman. And the load has increased on the Department of 
Public Welfare, I presume? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Not considerably, not in numbers. The relief 
has been very inadequate and it still is very inadequate. But, so far 
as numbers, we haven't had any great increase. We care mostly for 
unemployable persons, besides children. We don't care for able- 
bodied persons. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you handle delinquents? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Does your general fund have anything to do with 
the money for the schools? 


Mr. McGregor. The school money is collected by the tax collector 
and turned over directly to the school authorities. The county board 
of commissioners has nothing to do with the school funds. 

Mr. Sparkman. The only way you would be called upon for in- 
creased facilities would be for appropriations for these various agencies, 
such as public welfare — and what other agencies? 


Mr. McGregor. Where we got hit harder than anywhere else is 
the increased cost of road maintenance and building of access roads 
to the arsenal. 

Mr. Sparkman. They have been building them so far with the 
access road fund? 

Mr. McGregor. I talked to the county engineer about that and 
asked him approximately what the expense of the access roads they 
now have in mind would actually cost the county. And he said ap- 
proximately $20,000, and then of course we would have the deprecia- 
tion, the wear and tear, and the cost of maintenance of our road equip- 
ment. And we came to the conclusion it would cost the county about 
$30,000. That was unanticipated expense. 

Mr. Sparkman. You do make appropriation to the hospital each 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sh*. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is the hospital city-owned? 

Mr. McGregor. No; it is a nonprofit organization. 

Mr. Sparkman. To which both the city and county contribute? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sh. 


Mr. Sparkman. The Federal Government has recently authorized 
an expansion of the Huntsville Hospital. I believe neither the 
county nor the city will be called upon for any participation. As I 
recall it, the only requirement is that you pay off your debts. 

Mr. McGregor. I think that is the requirement. But when it 
comes to that, if the hospital can't run on a 50-bed basis without 
city and county help, how could it with 100 beds? 

Mr. Sparkman. You think eventually you will be called on for 
help for the hospital? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir, I do. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is that your view, too, Edward? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir; that is my idea. In fact, that has been 
mentioned already and the hospital has asked us to give them addi- 
tional money. 

Mr. Sparkman. An application for a health center is also being 
presented. That will be Dr. Hatchett's outfit. Are you anticipating 
an increased cost in the operation of that? 

Mr. McGregor. Dr. Hatchett said they wouldn't call on us for 
any increased operating costs. We were just called on for an appro- 
priation to his department of an additional $1,300, but that wouldn't 
be in way of operating cost. 

Mr. Payne. I am afraid from the city's standpoint they will call 
on us for additional appropriation for this emergency. The county 
and city raised $4,000— $2,000 each. I think Dr. Hatchett means if 


they leave thern that $4,000, he won't have to call on us any more. 
But at the time the city raised this $2,000 they had trailer camps and 
tents and there were consequently unusual sanitary requirements 
that had to be taken care of. And that's what you mean, Dr. 
Hatchett, "if we leave you that $4,000"? 


Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. We can use that money to meet these 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you have any suggestions as to whether there 
should be additional assistance from the Federal Government to 
Madison County? Do you think these projects we have mentioned 
have been treated pretty fairly? 

Mr. McGregor. When it comes to roads, we shall need plenty of 

Mr. Sparkman. The Federal Government doesn't handle any 
except access and strategic roads. 


Mr. McGregor. Our general fund, out of which our payments are 
made, runs $129,000 a year, and of that amount $18,000 a year comes 
from automobile tags, and I anticipate that our revenue from auto- 
mobile tags is going to be vastly lessened ; also that our ad valorem on 
automobiles will be less next year. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about the gasoline taxes? 

Mr. McGregor. The gasoline tax goes to building bridges and 
road fund and accounts for 85 percent of our building bridges and 
road funds. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has this county pledged its future gasoline tax or 
its automobile tag tax, for road building? 

Mr. McGregor. It was pledged on one bond issue that has been 

Mr. Sparkman. So you are clear on that now? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Mr. McGregor, you have been chairman of the 
board of county commissioners since when? 

Mr. McGregor. I took office the 16th of April. 

Mr. Sparkman. You have served a little less than a month? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Sparkman. Now, Norris [Mr. Payne], I have some questions 
for you along the same line. The statement from Mayor McAllister 
shows revenues and expenses that the city has had. That has been 
made a part of the record and will be printed in full in the record. 1 
But I would like to ask you some questions based upon that, for the 
purpose of the record. I know that while the statement submitted 
was for Mayor McAllister, you are familiar with it. 

"Seep. 11960. 



Give us some ideas with reference to the revenue, if any, the city 
of Huntsville has lost by reason of these projects? 

Mr. Payne. The city has lost nothing in the way of revenue on 
account of the Arsenal. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you had any increase in way of revenue by 
reason of these developments? 

Mr. Payne. We will have an increase in water revenue on account 
of additional houses being built in the city and in the police jurisdic- 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you extend your water lines through the police 

Mr. Payne. We don't supply Merrimack, Lincoln, or Dallas. We 
are tied in with the Lincoln and Dallas water in case of an emergency. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you supply water for the arsenal or the 

Mr. Payne. No, sir; we don't. In the last 8 months we have only 
gained 275 new water customers, but new customers don't mean 
anything to us for the first 14 or 15 months. I mean that our mini- 
mum charge is $16.20 a year — $1.50 a month less 10 percent — and it 
would cost about $18 to supply a new customer. We have to put in 
water meters, boxes, and so forth, so on our average customer we 
don't make any money for some time. There are going to be 190 
houses built in the city. Incidentally, 85 percent of this building has 
been outside the city limits and means nothing to the city in taxes. 
But there will be 190 houses built in the city and the city will get 
taxes on them". The city will feel the effect of tax revenue, but it 
will cost $7,000 or $8,000 to give those people water; that is, inside 
the city. Outside, they build their own lines. So it will take the 
city 2 or 3 years to realize any profit from that development. 

building permits 

Mr. Sparkman. I notice in the statement of the mayor there were 
building permits issued up through February 1942 for 135 residences; 
that is, in the city and the police jurisdiction. In other words, you 
have to issue permits if they are in the police jurisdiction? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. The police jurisdiction, under the law of Alabama, 
extends for 3 miles outside the corporate limits? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Does that take in the arsenal? 

Mr. Payne. Just a little part, not any of the buildings. I have a 
supplementary statement on building permits since February that I 
would like to submit. I wonder if this might be put in the record. 

Mr. Sparkman. Certainly. 

City of Huntsville building permits issued Feb. 14 to Apr. 25, 1942 



$100 to $500 63 

$500 to $1,000 15 

$1,000 to $2,000 57 

$2,000 to $3,000 117 

$3,000 to $4,000 15 

$5,000 to $6,000 1 

Cost — Continued. 

$7,000 to $8,000 1 

$9,000 and over 1 

Total 270 

Repairs 43 


Mr. Sparkman. That is 270 permits as against 135 last year? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Just about doubled? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; this is for 2 months, and that was about 6. 
There are also 268 permits to be issued in a subdivision near the 
arsenal. Only 25 have been issued out of that lot, which will about 
double that figure in the next 60 days. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you had any increase in privilege licenses? 


Mr. Payne. We have had a considerable increase in revenue from 
privilege licenses, but not on account of new businesses. It is on 
account of the rates. Last year this county was voted dry. The 
city was getting $30,000 or $40,000 a year out of liquor revenue. And 
when that was taken away the only way to offset that loss was to 
increase license rates, and we have had about a 20-percent increase 
over last year. 

Mr. Sparkman. You mean in total revenue? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; but it is not from new business. It is from 
the same old firms. 

Mr. Sparkman. What unusual demands have been made upon the 
city for facilities to take care of this new load that you have had on 
schools, police department, fire department, health service, and so 

Mr. Payne. We haven't had any unusual demands. We do have a 
few more policemen, and they work longer hours. Probably we have 
increased the fire department a little. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course, the arsenal has its own fire department; 
also the ordnance plant? 


Mr. Payne. Yes, sir. And we had a little trouble there by their 
hiring our firemen. Now, the school situation is a little different with 
the city than with the county. The county doesn't appropriate from 
its general fund to the school system. In other words, the schools 
collect their taxes and operate as long as they can on that money. 
The city has always maintained its schools, both colored and white, 
for 9 months. And this year it is going to take about $21,000 out of 
the general fund to carry the schools through 9 months. I believe 
the State minimum program for schools is 9 months for high schools 
and 7 months for grammar schools. ' But we run them both 9 months 
in the city. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you had any substantial increase in enroll- 
ment here in the schools by reason of these projects? 

Mr. Payne. Some. During good times, so the records show, you 
have lots of boys quitting high school and going to work, and that is 
true here. Our high school doesn't show the increase. And during 
depression times, a boy can't get a job and will stay in school. But the 
grammar schools are overcrowded. 

60396— 42— pt. 32- 



Mr. Sparkman. I noticed in a statement from Mr. George Brown, 
county superintendent of education, that he said there was only one 
place that would need additional facilities, for which he must receive 
financial assistance from the Federal Government, and he particularly 
pointed out that as soon as cars and tires wear out and couldn't be 
replaced, he predicted several hundred construction workers— and now 
it is being shifted to operating workers — will be forced to live pretty 
close in the vicinity of Huntsville. Do you anticipate any increased 
demands by reason of those conditions? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; in the seventy-second district. Huntsville is 
the forty-second district, and of course Lincoln and Dallas have a 
number, and the seventy-second district is between Huntsville and 
Merrimack and Lincoln and West Huntsville. There is no school in 
the seventy-second district, and those children have been coming to 
the city schools for years — always, I suppose, since they quit going to 
Farley. And down in the Mayf air development — that is down on 
Whitesburg Pike — that area] is also' in the seventy-second district. 
With some 200 or 300 houses there and the 190 houses just inside the 
city on Fifth Avenue, the road from the hospital to West Huntsville, 
we have applied for funds for a building in that vicinity. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is pending in the regional office in Atlanta? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; we think it will require another building to 
take care of all those 600 or 800 children. It really isn't a city problem, 
I guess, but the people are so close to us, our school system has been 
taking care of them. When they first started to do it there were 75 
or 80 children. Now the Whitesburg Pike area has developed, as you 
know, to where there are about 400 children there. 

Mr. Sparkman. Does the city get revenue from the seventy-second 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. If you get the revenue, then the responsibility is 
on you to take care of these children? 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; the same as from the forty-second district, 
but those people don't pay any part of this $20,000. 

Mr. Sparkman. They pay no city taxes and don't contribute to the 
part you pay out of the general fund? 

Mr. Payne. That's right. The city has a 4^-mill school building 
tax that those people do not pay any part of. Ihe people of the 
city put up $40,000 a year to carry on its school program, and the 
people outside don't pay any of that $40,000. 


Mr. Sparkman. I think it might be well for the record to show 
this fact: that the city of Huntsville has a very restricted corporate 
area. As a matter of fact, there are more people living outside the 
city and immediately contiguous to it than inside the city. 

Mr. Payne. That's right. Right now I would say 5,000 more 
people live in the police jurisdiction than in the city proper. And 
there will be a good many more. The figure will increase in the next 
few months. 

Mr. Sparkman. I believe the 1940 census shows Huntsville s 
population as 13,000? 

Mr. Payne. 13,171, and about 15,716 in the police jurisdiction. 



Mr. Sparkman. How much do you estimate will bo the increase in 
addition to that, in- the police jurisdiction? 

Mr. Payne. 5,000 or 6,000. 

Mr. Sparkman. Which would give about 35,000. 

The Chairman. Has there been any increase outside the police 

Mr. Payne. Yes, sir; but most of it is in the police jurisdiction. 

Mr. Sparkman. I will ask you the same question I asked Edward 
[Mr. McGregor]. The city has, of course, put in some applications 
for Federal grants. Did you put in any for waterworks and sewers? 

Mr. Payne. Just schools and for the health center. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you feel the Federal Government has treated 
you fairly with reference to that, or do you have any further suggestion 
as to that? 

Mr. Payne. Frankly, I don't know very much about the health 

Mr. Sparkman. I wasn't referring to a health center. I am 
referring to the program as a whole. In other words, has there been 
imposed on Huntsville by reason of these projects any undue burden 
which the Government has not taken care of properly? 

Mr. Payne. I don't think so. 

Mr. Sparkman. I wish to introduce into the record at this point 
two statements relating to the health situation in this coimty. 

(The statements are as follows:) 

Department op Public Health, 

Montgomery, March 6, 1942. 
The Honorable A. W. McAllister, 

Mayor of Huntsville, Huntsville, Ala. 
Dear Sir: The possible public health hazards created by the contamination of 
the water from the Huntsville Spring, which is used as a public supply to serve 
the population in the Huntsville metropolitan area, and the disposal of the waste 
into the Huntsville Spring Branch has been brought to my attention. 

The following is a tabulation of the bacteriological analyses of samples collected 
from the spring water that is used for the public supply. As you know, the only 
treatment that this water receives before it is pumped in the distribution system 
is chlorination. 



Gas in lactose 

(B. coti present) 




per 100 



Feb. 16,1940 



,■3/5 0/1 0/1 
5/5 0/1 1/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 
4/5 1/1 0/1 


Feb. 22, 1940 


May 8, 1940 : 


Aug. 16, 1940 . 


Nov. 21, 1940 



5/5 0/1 0/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 
5/5 0/1 1/1 

Feb. 8, 1941 




May 10, 1941 

Aug. 9, 1941 


Nov. 7, 1941 

Average for year, 1941 


Feb. 10, 1939.. 



1/5 1/1 0/1 
5/5 1/1 1/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 
5/5 1/1 0/1 

May 7, 1939 


Aug. 1, 1939 


Nov. 8, 1939 




The appearance of the spring water as it discharges from the rocks near the 
center of town and as it flows through the canal to the drainage canal is very pleas- 
ing to the eye and is a sight of which the citizens of Huntsville should be proud. 
However, the foregoing bacteriological analyses indicate that the water has been 
contaminated with domestic sewage. You will notice that the plate count or the 
number of bacteria per cubic centimeter at 37° C. is relatively low. This is taken 
to mean that very few soil bacteria are present and that very little surface con- 
tamination is reaching the supply. The presence of Bacillus coli in all of the above 
samples and the high most probable number (m. p. n.) per 100 cubic centimeters 
indicate that the spring water is highly contaminated with sewage or discharges 
from the human body. This contamination cannot be seen by the eye and, there- 
fore, does not detract from the appearance of the water from the spring, but does 
present a public health problem that the city officials should not lose sight of and 
should take immediate steps to correct. It is possible that the 'sewage is leaking 
from one or more broken sewer lines into cracks or crevices in the limestone rock 
above the^spring. If this is the case (we imagine that it is) , they should be repaired 
and properly sealed. However, there is no assurance that other sewer lines will 
not be broken or caused to leak when the ground over the underground stream 
that feeds the spring settles or sinks, as was the case of the cave-in several years 
ago at the southeast corner of the courthouse square. There are two other 
instances that you may recall where the city water tasted bad for days. They 
were shortly after the fires at C. C. Anderson's and J. D. Humphrey's drug stores. 
It is probable that some medicine or chemicals found their way through the lime- 
stone rock into the spring water. 

It is our firm belief and conviction that the public water supply should receive 
purification and filtration prior to chlorination, the only safeguard that the water 
now receives. The methods and the design of such a plant to assure a safe water's 
being delivered to the distribution system at all times should be left to.qualified 
consulting engineers familiar in water works design and practices. 

The pollution of the Huntsville Spring Branch by the discharge of raw or un- 
treated sewage is evident. Before the construction of the Huntsville Arsenal, 
which is located on the stream below the sewer outfalls, the land was sparsely 
settled and the water was not used for domestic purposes. Since this construc- 
tion has started, the increased population that has connected to the present 
sewerage system and the contemplated expansion in the Huntsville area will 
greatly increase the sewage flow and thereby pollute the stream to a greater 
extent. It has been reported that over 900 houses are now under construction 
or will be started soon in the Huntsville area. It is well known that a stream 
can receive a certain amount of sewage without becoming septic or putrefactive. 
It is possible that this stream may become so polluted that this critical point 
will be reached and that it will become very objectionable and cause considerable 
damage to the riparian owner below. This is in addition to the public health 
aspect which is much greater since the construction of the arsenal where a con- 
siderable number of people will be employed. R. C. Ditto, brigadier general, 
United States Army, commanding officer of the Huntsville Arsenal, has become 
quite concerned, and rightly so, over the disposal of the raw sewage from Hunts- 
ville into the Spring Branch which flows through the property upon which the 
arsenal is located. He stated the conditions to the Chief, Chemical Warfare 
Service, Washington, D. C, a copy of which letter was sent to you. We wish 
to express our desire that the city officials follow his recommendation, which is as 
follows : 

"It is recommended that early action be taken to have the city of Huntsville 
erect and operate a sewage-treatment plant inasmuch as this seems to be the 
onlv solution to the present condition." 

Mr. D. S. Abell, chief engineer and director of the Bureau of Sanitation, wrote 
you on December 3, 1941, a copy of his letter is attached, setting forth the need 
for expanding and improving the public water supply and the necessity of treating 
the sewage before it is delivered to the spring branch. He also brought to your 
attention the possibility of securing some aid for financing these improvements. 
Since his letter was written, a number of Alabama towns and cities in defense 
areas have made application to the Defense Public Works Administration for 
funds and have secured financial aid for the construction of water works and 
sewerage systems. 

In view of the above facts and the need of these improvements for the public 
health and welfare of your people, I wish to stress and urge you to employ a con- 
sulting engineer experienced in design and construction of water and sewage 
treatment works, and authorize him to make preliminary reports. An applica- 


tion embodying his recommendations for the needed improvements should be 
filed with the Defense Public Works Administration as soon as possible. 

We will be pleased to render any aid possible in securing a solution to your water 
and sewage problems. 

Yours very truly, 

B. F. Austin, M. D., 
Acting State Health Officer. 
Copy to Gen. R. C. Ditto, Dr. W. C. Hatchett, Mr. H. J. Thrasher, Mr. Frank 
H. Ford, Mr. H. C. Pollard, Mr. L. C. Erwin, Mr. J. R. Maples, Mr. W. H. 
Collier, Mr. H. B. Brvant, Mr. W. A. Stanley, Mr. W. J. Price, Mr. M. H. Lanier, 
Mr. S. L. Terry, Mr. G. F. Geron. 

Montgomery, Ala., 

December 3, 19J+2. 
Hon. A. W. McAllister, 

Mayor of Huntsville, Huntsville, Ala. 

Dear Sir: You will recall interviews which I 'had with several officials of the 
city of Huntsville in company with Mr. L. Cummins, sanitation officer of your 
county health department, with reference to the advisability of making applica- 
tion to the Defense Public Works Administration for funds with which to con- 
struct adequate facilities for treatment of the Huntsville water supply as well 
as sewage from the city system. 

Your attention is called to the enclosed letter from Lt. I. E. Madsen, inquiring 
as to what steps are being formulated to remedy the undesirable practice of 
discharging untreated sewage from the city of Huntsville into the Huntsville 
Spring branch. You are no doubt aware of the efforts being made by this depart- 
ment as well as the Federal Government to improve the conditions of streams 
by the treatment of sewage. In fact, the War Department at the Huntsville 
Arsenal is making plans to install facilities for what is termed "the complete 
treatment of sewage." However, these facilities may be used for only a com- 
paratively short length of time. This bureau has, for a number of years, been 
concerned over the fact that the only treatment given to the public water supply 
for which you are responsible is chlorination. As you know, a spring supply 
through limestone regions may become Seriously contaminated without any 
warning whatsoever; in fact, recently, laboratory analysis indicate that the raw 
water for your supply shows evidence of contamination. To depend upon chlori- 
nation alone, or in fact, any treatment which does not include coagulation and 
filtration as well as chlorination, would not be considered adequate to treat your 
water supply. 

In view of the above, it is urged that you take steps at once to install facilities 
for the treatment of water and sewage. Although this has no bearing upon the 
need for such facilities, it may be possible in the near future for you to obtain 
funds with which to aid you in the financing of such projects. It is understood 
that legislation has been introduced in Congress to extend the activities of the 
Defense Public Works Administration on receiving applications under the original 
allocation funds. If additional funds are made available, it is urged that you be 
ready to submit projects, so that the above facilities can be provided in the very 
near future. So that you will be ready for this possibility, it is recommended that 
you employ a consulting engineer experienced in the design and construction of 
water and sewage treatment works and authorize him to make a preliminary report 
to you on the basis of which financing can be arranged for these needed improve- 

We should be glad to hear from you as to what action has been taken in this 
matter. If we can aid you in any way, please call upon us. 
Yours very truly, 

D. S. Abell, 
Chief Engineer and Director, Bureau of Sanitation. 

Copies to: Dr. W. C. Hatchett. 

First Lt. I. E. Madsen. 


Mr. Sparkman. Dr. Hatchett, we shall place your very excellent 
statement in the record at this point. 
(The statement is as follows:) 




By an act of the State legislature, the organized medical profession is granted 
the power to formulate its own constitution. The State medical association con- 
stitutes the board of health. Every legal practicing physician of Alabama who is 
a member of his local medical society is a member of the State board of health. 
Likewise every member of the Madison County Medical Society is a member of 
the county board of health. 

The members of the county medical society elect five of its members which 
constitutes the board of censors or the committee of public health, with the chair- 
man of the county commissioners as a member of said board. 

The State of Alabama grants the right of this board to promulgate rules and 
regulations all pertaining to health which has the force and effect of law. 

All State, county, and municipal public health laws, all rules and regulations 
pertaining to health and health conditions are enforced through the county health 

The county health officer is elected by the county board of censors acting for 
the county medical society. This board is responsible for all public health work 
in the county and no municipality is permitted by law to hire any health personnel 
except through the board. 

The county health officer and his subordinate personnel constitute the county 
department of public health. 

The relationship between the State department of public health and the 
county department of public health is a supervisory one, participating financially, 
advisory, and a consultant service. 

The health department contemplates no increase in personnel. 

The funds for the payment of personnel of the Madison County Health Depart- 
ment are derived from four sources, United States Government, State of Alabama, 
Madison County, and the city of Huntsville. 

The Madison County Tuberculosis Association participates financially in the 
control of tuberculosis. 

The local society for crippled children participates in the transportation and 
treatment of crippled children. 

Budget for State or local health project 

COVERED BY BUDGET: JULY 1, 1941, TO JUNE 30, 1942 



12 months 

Source of funds 




U. S. Public 
Health Service 






$4, 200 


$4, 200. 00 
1, 780. 00 
1, 780. 00 
2, 040. 00 
1, 620. 00 

1, 500. 00 
1, 080. 00 

480. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 

2, 412. 20 

260. 00 


$1, 500. 00 



1, 780 CB 


Sanitation officer No. 1.. 
Sanitation officer No. 2.. 

2, 040. 00 
1, 500. 00 

$1, 080 


540. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 
480. 00 
2, 412. 20 



Sanitation officer No. 1„ 
Sanitation officer No. 2.. 


Fees, P. T. physicians, 

840 CB 


Fees, P. T. dentists, 

260 CB 

22, 372. 30 


12, 012. 20 





Revision of budget for State or local health project 

State: Alabama. Project: Madison County. Revision No. 75-A. Period covered by revised budget 
July 1, 1941 to June 30, 1942 

[Jan. 12, 1942] 








Changes in source of funds 







Totals of previously 

$22, 372. 20 

$4, 480 

$12, 012. 20 

$1, 080 

$4, 800 

Salary, nurse No. 1 (increase 
from $1,920, effective Oct. 
1, 1941) 


$1, 980 









1, 600. 00 


413. 33 

383. 33 

1, 125. 00 

360. 00 

1, 500. 00 
360. 00 



Salarv, nurse No. 2 (increase 
from $1,780, effective Oct. 
1, 1941) 


Salary, nurse No. 3 (increase 
from $1,780, effective Oct. 
1, 1941) 


Salary, sanitation officer No. 
1 (increase from $2,040, 
effective Oct. 1, 1941) 

Salary, sanitation officer No. 2 
(increase from $1,620 effec- 
tive Oct. 1, 1941).. 




Salary, sanitation officer No. 
3 (effective Aug. 1, 1941, 2 
months at $1,500; effective 
Oct. 1, 1941, 9 months, at 

1, 600. 00 


Travel, sanitation officer 
No. 3 (effective Aug. 1, 



Travel, nurse, U. S. Public 
Health Service (effective 
Aug. 2, 1941) 

Travel, medical officer, U. 
S. Public Health Service 
(effective Oct. 1, 1941) 

Salary, nurse No. 4 (effective 
Oct. 1, 1941) 

413. 33 

383. 33 



583. 33 

360. 00 

1, 500. 00 
■ 360. 00 


Travel, nurse No. 4 (effec- 
tive Oct. 1, 1941) 

Salary, M. and M. inspector 
(effective Oct. 1, 1941) 

Travel, M. and M. inspector. 

Salary, nurse, (paid by U. S. 





Salary, medical officer (paid 
by U. S. Public Health 

6, 406. 66 


3, 333. 33 

2, 938. 33 

Total of revised budget. 

28, 778. 86 


15, 345. 53 

4, 018. 33 


State: Alabama. Project: Madison County. Revision No. 75-B. Period covered by revi 
Feb. 1, 1942 to June 30, 1942 


Totals of previously ap- 
proved budget 

$28, 778. 86 


$15, 345. 53 




Salary, sanitation officer, 

200. 00 

200. 00 


Travel medical officer, sav- 
ing, second and third quar- 
ters (effective Feb. 1, 1942). 

Travel U. S. Public Health 
Service, engineer (effective 
Feb. 1, 1942) 

Salary, U. S. Public Health 
Service, engineer (paid by 
U. S. Public Health Ser- 




Total of net revisions . . 



Total of revised budget. 

US, 062. 19 

4,615 15,345.53 

3, 901. 66 


Signed for State: B. F. Austin. 
March 18, 1942. 


The following clinics are conducted under the supervision of the Madison 
County Health Department. 

Chest clinic. — Chest clinic for the purpose of diagnosis of indigent cases of 
tuberculosis and classify each patient as to treatment. Histories and family 
records are kept of these patients and follow-up visits are made. Madison 
County has only four sanatorium beds for tubercular cases. Regular clinics are 
held each week for patients who receive pneumothorax treatments. 

Follow-up visits are made by the nursing staff of the health department, of all 
positive cases of tuberculosis, for the purpose of instructing the patient and 
family contacts. 

Venereal disease clinic. — In the venereal disease clinic only indigent patients 
referred to the clinic by family physicians are treated. 

Patients are diagnosed and given standard treatments according to the disease. 
Follow-up visits are made when patients fail to return for treatment. Patients 
who refuse to return are incarcerated until such time as they are willing to return. 
Treatment is administered during incarceration. 

Maternal clinic. — Usually patients attending this clinic consist of those who 
are to be delivered by midwives. Patients are examined for the purpose of deter- 
mining whether patient will be a normal delivery. Records of these patients are 
kept and their progress recorded at each clinic session. Follow-up visits of in- 
struction are made by the nursing staff. 

Child-health clinic- — Indigent patients visit the clinic, diagnosis is made and 
treatment of minor illness is given. 

All severe cases are referred to a physician and if necessary, are sent to the 
hospital for service on charity. 

Dental clinic. — Indigent children of the first grade in the public schools are 
eligible for the service. These children are serviced through the eighth grade as 
children from the first grades are taken on each year. In this kind of arrangement 
all indigent children will eventually receive dental service. Follow-up visits are 
made by the nursing staff for the purpose of encouraging these patients to return 
for treatment. 

Records are kept of all patients and treatments. There is no connection of the 
health department with the hospital in the treatment of cases. 

Hospitals. — There is one general hospital in Madison County consisting of 70 
beds in emergency. Normally the population of Madison County is approxi- 
mately 65,000. It is estimated that the population at this time is approximately 
85,000 to 90,000. 

There are no beds for tuberculosis, no isolation wards; only medical, surgery, 
obstetrics, and other noncontagious cases. Although cases of contagious and 
infectious diseases needing surgical treatment are admitted and isolated for this 

Four beds for the treatment of tuberculosis are maintained in the Morgan 
County Tuberculosis Sanatorium by the Madison County Antituberculosis 
Association, and two State beds are financed by this association, making a total 
of six patients treated at same time. Patients needing pneumothorax are trans- 
ported to the sanatorium for this treatment. 

Financial statement. — All revenue for the operation of the Madison County 
Health Department is kept in the First National Bank, Montgomery, Ala. 
Vouchers for all salaries and expenses are made out and approved for payment 
by the local health officer and mailed to the financial secretary, State board of 
health, Montgomery, Ala. No cash is handled by the department. 

Copy of budget and source of funds enclosed. No increase of budget expected 
for next fiscal year. 

Madison County is located about 60 miles from Camp Forrest and is susceptible 
to invocation of the May Act. 

Water supply. — Water supply for the city of Huntsville consists of a large spring 
emerging from under the city. The water is limestone and considered adequate 
for the city and surrounding territory for which it serves. The raw water from 
the spring' is highly polluted with Bacillus coli and other bacteria. The water 
supply is chlorinated before it is pumped out to the consumer. Frequent tests 
are made daily at the health department for the presence of chlorine in the water. 
Three of the four industrial centers obtain their water supply from deep wells 
and purified by chlorination. One from a large spring and is also chlorinated. 

The county water supply consists of shallow and deep wells, some with pumps 
and others serviced by buckets drawn by hand. A number of homes are supplied 
with springs and cisterns. All springs and many of the wells, especially shallow 


and those serviced by buckets, are polluted with Bacillus coli and other bacteria. 
The water is hard and soft, depending on the locality. 

Sewerage disposal. — The sewerage disposal of the city of Huntsville constitutes 
a main sewer with laterals which serves the city proper. No sewer extension is 
built by the city beyond the city limits. Some private citizens are granted the 
privilege to build a private line and attach to city service. 

The industrial centers maintain a sewer system for their village. 

There is no regular sewer system maintained in the county ' proper. The 
sewerage disposal in the county consists of individual septic tanks, pit privies, and 
surface or open privies. 

No provisions have been made to extend public sewer systems to any new 
projects. Individual septic tanks only. 

Venereal disease control program. — A free clinic is operated under the super- 
vision of the county and State Departments of public health, for the treatment of 
all indigent cases of venereal disease. Each new case is interviewed for the 
purpose of ascertaining his or her source contact and their own contacts. Visits 
are made to cases who fail to report for regular treatment. After one visit, if 
they fail to return to the clinic in a reasonable time, he is detained in the county 
jail for treatment. A citation prepared by the county health officer by authority 
under section 1106 Alabama Code of 1923, as amended in 1939, is given the 
sheriff of the county to be served on the person detained in jail under the 
provisions of section 1103 Code 1923 as amended by General Acts of 1935. No 
release may be given patient except from the health officer. This same action 
may be taken on any private patient being treated by a physician with the 
physicians' consent. 

Organized prostitution has been eliminated since the defense area has been 
established in Madison County. We do not mean to say that prostitution has 
been eliminated in the city and county altogether, but it has been reduced to 
private places. 

No new laws have been passed by the State, county, city, or county health 
department relative to venereal disease control since the defense area was estab- 
lished, with exception of one law relative to fines on prostitutes. The fine on 
these cases was raised from $10 to $100. I believe we have adequate law and 
regulations for the control of this disease. 

The venereal disease is rather prevalent, usually running from 1.25 to 4.5 in 
the white, and high as 18 in the colored race. 

Housing conditions. — There has been no epidemic of any nature in Huntsville 
and Madison County for several years. We had 36 cases of smallpox in 1939 
and over 20,000 vaccinations were given during that year. One hundred and ten 
cases of typhoid fever, mostly rural 1926, and 1941 nine cases. There is no 
indication of an epidemic of any kind at this time. 

The housing condition in some sections of the city and county is in very bad 
repair and more or less crowded at present, but I do not believe that there is any 
great danger of disease contagion at present or any future time, if conditions are 
kept under careful supervision of sanitary inspectors. 


Mr. Sparkman. For the benefit of the record, I wish you would 
state, Dr. Hatchett, the authority the local health departments have 
under the Constitution and Statutes of the State of Alabama to 
supervise health regulations in the, counties? 


Dr. Hatchett. The legislature delegates that authority to the 
organized medical profession. They have their own constitution. 
Every regular practicing physician in the State of Alabama is a mem- 
ber of the State board of health. Out of that membership they elect 
10 of their members, which constitute the public health committee or 
State board of censors, with the Governor serving as ex-officio member. 
And it comes on down to the county. The county set-up is the same 


as the State. Every regular doctor who affiliates himself with the 
county system is a member of the county board of health, and they 
in turn elect 5 members, which constitutes the local health committee, 
with the chairman of the county board of commissioners serving as a 
member, or the probate judge, whichever it may be. In this county 
it is the chairman of the board of commissioners. 

Mr. Sparkman. What authority is vested in the health department? 

Dr. Hatchett. The legislature gives this board the right to pro- 
mulgate rules and regulations which have the force and effect of law. 
They are to be passed as the needs for them arise. 


Mr. Sparkman. What are the sources of your funds? 

Dr. Hatchett. Our funds come from the city, the county, the 
State, and the Federal Government. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is there any matching system so far as the State 
and the Federal funds are concerned? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir; just plain appropriations. 

Mr. Sparkman. Depending on the need? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Doctor, how long have you been in public health 

Dr. Hatchett. Twenty years. 

Mr. Sparkman. As a matter of fact, the public health work in 
Alabama is recognized as one of the best in the Union and has been 
for a good many years? 

Dr. Hatchett. That is true. 

Mr. Sparkman. What is the size of your staff here? 

Dr. Hatchett. I have at the present time one health officer, one 
secretary, five nurses, four inspectors; two temporary inspectors- 
making six inspectors — and two laboratory technicians. 

Mr. Sparkman. How does that compare with the size of the staff 
set up by public health standards for the country for a county of 
this size? 

cannot reach high standards set for country 

Dr. Hatchett. It is far below the standards. 

Mr. Sparkman. As a matter of fact, you never reach the standards 
in any counties, or anywhere? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir. 

The Chairman. How are you able to do the work? Do you work 
longer hours? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir; we work longer hours and do the best we 

Mr. Sparkman. You never feel your job is perfectly done? 

Dr. Hatchett. Never. 

Mr. Sparkman. I remember, Dr. Hatchett, a public-health man, 
Dr. Ruhland, testifying about the hospital facilities in the District of 
Columbia, and he gave us some very interesting figures as to what the 
standards were, and then he showed how far below that measurement 
the District of Columbia came. And I presume that is true. You 
naturally set your standards very high in the hope you might some day 
reach them? 

Dr. Hatchett. That is true. 


The Chairman. You wouldn't have to set them very high to com- 
pete with the District of Columbia. Dr. Ruhland testified that they 
have over 6.000 outside toilets in Washington, not connected with 

Mr. Sparkman. Not only that, but they have some of the worst 
slum conditions in the United States within a stone's throw of the 

Dr. Hatchett. We have some outside toilets in the city of Hunts- 
ville, but they have approved sanitary disposals. 

Mr. Sparkman. How are the people in your employment paid? 
Are some of them paid from local funds and some from others?. 

Dr. Hatchett. All funds are turned over to the county health 
department in the form of checks, and those checks are deposited to 
the credit of the State health officer in Montgomery. For salaries 
and other expenditures vouchers are mailed and the checks issued from 

Mr. Sparkman. These funds are not earmarked for any particular 
person or work? 

Dr. Hatchett. That's right. And no cash is handled by the 

Mr. Sparkman. How many clinics do you have? 

operation of clinics 

Dr. Hatchett. A venereal disease clinic, a chest clinic, a child 
health and prenatal clinic, and a dental clinic. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are all of them pretty well attended? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. The people do avail themselves of the opportunities 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir; we abandoned about three prenatal clinics 
on account of the lack of medical personnel. 

Mr. Sparkman. You say there is a shortage in medical personnel? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir; we are, in this county, eight doctors short 
of what we were a year ago. 


Mr. Sparkman. You mentioned a venereal disease clinic. Has 
there been any appreciable increase in venereal diseases in this county? 

Dr. Hatchett. Some. 

Mr. Sparkman. I wonder if you might give us the percentage? 

Dr. Hatchett. Of course we took blood tests on the first registrants. 
I think the first group registered October 16, 1940. Out of 4,818 
registrants, we had 220 positives. We were running the Kahn test, 
and with that test there are sometimes errors on account of certain 
conditions at the time the blood is taken. So we called those 220 
back and retested them, and 180 of them proved positive. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you treat the 220? 

Dr. Hatchett. Patients are admitted to the venereal disease clinic 
by certificate of a practicing physician that the patient is unable to 
pay the regular fee. They are referred to the clinic for treatment. 
I think our clinic got about 80 of those cases. 

Mr. Sparkman. As to those who were not treated at your clinic, 
is there any compulsion for them to be treated, either by a private 
physician or in a public clinic? 


Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. How do you enforce that treatment? 

Dr. Hatchett. We have a nurse who is regularly on venereal 
disease control work, and we try to get them to cooperate voluntarily, 
and, if not, we force them to do it. 

Mr. Sparkman. There are a good many soldiers coming in here? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Camp Forrest is how far away? 

Dr. Hatchett. Sixty miles, I think. 

Mr. Sparkman. And, of course, a great many persons migrated into 
this county by reason of the construction work? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Was there during that time any appreciable 
increase of venereal disease? 

Dr. Hatchett. I don't think so. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is there any way of checking on the prevalence of 
venereal disease, except in a casual manner? 

Dr. Hatchett. If we have a new case, the only way we can check 
on others is through contacts. We try to get out of this patient his 
probable contacts and his source of contacts, and we do get some that 
way, and we get his family if he is married ; we get them in for a blood 

health center 

Mr. Sparkman. Other than the health center you applied for, have 
you planned expansion of any other health facilities? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you plan any expansion of your personnel 
beyond its present number? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir. 

Mr, Sparkman. What does your proposed health center consist of? 

Dr. Hatchett. The proposed building is for space for the health 
personnel and clinic rooms. 

Mr. Sparkman. You would simply transfer your present personnel 
and present operations into that new building, is that correct? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

may lose additional physicians 

Mr. Sparkman. You mentioned a few minutes ago that there had 
been a decrease of eight doctors in this county in the last year. Is 
that becoming a problem already? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Will it become more serious if others are called into 
active service? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you anticipate others will be called? 

Dr. Hatchett. There are about three or four in this county who 
are probably subject to call. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is by reason of their age? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. They are not Reserve officers? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. The Government has made a survey of all doctors 
subject to call in certain age brackets? 


Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You think there are three or four more in this 
county that will be called? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir; I had a letter a few days ago from the State 
board of health that some representative would be here to go over the 
situation with me. I would estimate there was 1 doctor for every 
6,000 people in this county now. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you have a standard gage for that? If so, 
what is it? 

Dr. Hatchett. One doctor for every 2,000. 

Mr. Sparkman. You are already down to 1 doctor for every 6,000? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You anticipate it will be down even more? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. I doubt if there is anything comparable with that 
in the United States. 

Dr. Hatchett. And quite a few of our doctors are getting old. 

The Chairman. You exclude yourself, of course? 

Dr. Hatchett. No; including myself. We have now but six 
doctors in this county below the age of 50. 

The Chairman. I have heard Congressman Sparkman tell about 
what a wonderfully healthy district he had. And I didn't quite 
believe it all until I heard the figures now. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course, the invigorating climate eliminates a 
lot of sickness. 

Dr. Hatchett. We haven't had an epidemic in this county for 
some years. 

shortage of nurses 

Mr. Sparkman. What about your nursing situation? Do you have 
a sufficient number of nurses in the county? 

Dr. Hatchett. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Would it run the same as it does with the doctors? 

Dr. Hatchett. There should be 1 for every 500 people and we have 
1 for 2,500. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are the present hospital facilities in need of 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. The arsenal and the ordnance plant have their own 
hospital facilities, or are planning to and will have them, and will 
have regular medical and dental detachments? 

Dr. Hatchett. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. That will relieve that some? 

Dr. Hatchett. They will take care of their workers. It won't 
take care of their families. 


Mr. Sparkman. Mrs. Humphrey, the very complete statement you 
submitted for the department of public welfare has been accepted 
for our record. 

(Statement follows:) 




I. Financial Statement 

(a) Source of revenue. — The Madison County Department of Public Welfare 
receives $150 a month from the city of Huntsville and $2,057.58 a month from 
the county of Madison. The majority of these appropriations come from a 
general fund. 

The responsibility for providing funds to meet the cost of assistance payments 
to needy individuals and of administration of the county department is shared 
by the three levels of government on the following percentage basis: 



Special child-welfare services.. 

Old-age assistance 

Aid 1o dependent children 

Aid to blind 

General assistance: 

Aid to handicapped 

Temporary aid 

Boarding home care 

Surplus commodities distribution 

Sponsored projects 

Other - 




















The distribution of administrative costs among the three units of government 
is tentative and subject to change if it is found not to be equitable. 

The only exception to the distribution in the above table occurs in the payments 
made to the Confederate pensioners who are also eligible for old-age assistance. 
These payments are made exclusively from State and Federal funds. Provision 
for these payments is made through a special 1-mill ad valorem tax which provides 
State funds for Confederate pensions. 

(b) From October 1940 until September 1941 an average of 536 families per 
month received cash grants from public assistance funds. There were approxi- 
mately 1,386 persons in these 536 families. 

During the year's period, a total of 42 families were approved as eligible for 
assistance, but because of lack of funds, nothing but surplus commodities were 

Because of lack of funds, an average of 1,155 families approved per month as 
eligible for Work Projects Administration received nothing but surplus com- 
modities until assigned to a Work Projects Administration project. 

Listed on separate schedule according to months are the number of families 
assisted according to type of assistance given. 

Average monthly grants per family in various categories are as follows: 

Aid to handicapped _. $8. 37 

Old-age assistance $8. 91 

Aid to dependent children 10. 32 

Aid to blind 8. 80 

Temporary aid 9. 25 

We feel information regarding the number of families given assistance during 
months of October, November, and December, 1941 and the month of January 
1942 is interesting. Particularly the number of families approved as being in need 
of assistance (aside from Work Projects Administration families), but not given 
any assistance except surplus commodities because of lack of funds. Usually 
these aforementioned families were given cash assistance at the withdrawal or 
reduction of assistance (by reason of death, relatives became able to support, etc.) 
given other families. However, with the rising costs of living, the acute housing 
shortage with its subsequent influence on rents of existing housing facilities, we felt 
it wiser to attempt to give more adequate cash grants to those already receiving 
public assistance. This prevented giving checks to those already approved and 
receiving surplus commodities only and excluded those new families which were 
approved except those having dire emergencies. 


There was a 25 percent housing shortage prior to the influx of workers for the 
construction of the Government arsenal and ordnance plant. No exact figures 
are known as to the residence of persons employed at the arsenal and ordnance 
plant but it was learned through the personnel director of these plants that 70 
percent came from Huntsville and surrounding radius of from 50 to 70 miles, 
10 percent from other cities and towns in Alabama, and 20 percent from other 

Another factor influencing the housing situation was the removal of 535 families 
living on property purchased as the site of the arsenal. Of these 535 families, 
136 were of the white race and 399 of the Negro race. Most of the families were 
engaged in some form of agriculture. Eight families were receiving assistance 
from the department of public welfare and 10 were known to Work Projects 
Administration either as actively working on projects or certified and waiting to 
be assigned. 

Eighty-five of the white families and 257 of the Negro families moved to other 
farms. Eight white families and 8 Negro families moved to Farm Security 
Administration project farms. Seventy-two Negro families were moved to 
temporary living quarters not erected by Farm Security Administration. Forty 
white families and 105 Negro families moved into Huntsville area or the sur- 
rounding countryside. Most of the employable males of this latter group secured 
employment as laborers with the arsenal. 

This need on the part of the defense workers for living quarters with their 
accompanying ability to pay whatever rent was demanded, forced many persons 
known to the department of public welfare to move into small cramped quarters 
or else to pay their entire public assistance grant for rent to avoid being evicted. 
Nine families known to department of public welfare were forced to move because 
arsenal workers either bought or rented the houses and rooms they were occupying 
A family of 10 persons was forced to move into 1 room and to date have been 
unable to find other quarters. 

Juvenile delinquency has increased to a great extent. Most cases come from 
one area where we feel there are a number of contributing factors. This district, 
known as West Huntsville, is composed of families of low-income groups who 
occupy poor and crowded housing facilities and generally are unable to provide 
minimum needs for normal child life. Many children in this area are not attend- 
ing school. There are few recreational facilities. We found that both parents 
of many of these delinquents are employed and away from home most of the day 
and night. At this writing, plans are being formulated for the building of new 
schools and some additions to existing ones for both city and county systems. 
The Young Men's Christian Association, as a member agency of the United 
Service Organizations, has begun plans for a community service program which 
we feel will be very helpful in meeting the needs of families and children. 

A recent survey in regard to preschool children reveals the necessity for nursery 
schools. A further need is anticipated along these lines when women employees 
will be taken on at the ordnance plant. At the present time, 40 percent of the 
employees of the local mills handling defense orders are women. 

Few requests for public assistance have come from outsiders. Several religious 
organizations, we are told, have been approached in instances of stranded defense 
workers. However, these requests have been few in number. 

The health department has increased its staff. Reasons for increase will no 
doubt be fully reported by the county health officer. 

The local hospital has been taxed to its fullest extent and there is grave danger 
it cannot meet the additional demands x>f the permanent workers coming to be 
employed at the arsenal. There has been little increase in requests from indigent 
outsiders for hospital services. Present hospital facilicies serve only a limited 
number of department of public welfare clients. Requests are made for only 
most emergent cases as appropriations made by the city and the county only total 
$600 per month. 

We are anticipating a decrease in county appropriations for public assistance 
and since State and Federal funds are only given after the first dollar has been 
out out by the local group, the situation of the low-income groups become 
alarmingly grave. The purchase of taxable lands by the Federal Government; 
the change from privately owned and operated power lines to Tennessee Valley 
Authority and the county making the sale of intoxicants illegal, will result in less 
revenue and such being the case, less money will be appropriated for public welfare 




o " 




a -a 





o> 00 



oooo x 



3 fl 
o > 

a - a 

O 00 CM 00 * 






ONC6 010 


S2 ""' 

■O [~ 




3 £ 

o > 

a 'a 



0>0 CO 








O0 CM 





§ d 

o > 


lOOOO x 



1 i 


00 oo 



•rf*P -# 

■o o> 





3 d 
3 fe 
o > 














lO O 







a -a 

>oo oo 






S8 3° 

<N O 


"- 1 



id w, 3'a 

Id P"S 

;.2 1 c? 


i- S § 

I.S'S d 






c § 

>> m c 




io P. P 

■5 '.' 

J'SSa 2 

^ e m s 

t- oa e 













d d 
d g 

a -a 





s§ g 







a -a 




3 g 

a -I 



il 88 !" 





P5 M 




to O O O »0 



; ^ /. - " 




£ 2 


3 g 







S 1-1 




10 OOOO 

a s 




>ooo ^ 


g^g'g * 

a -a 







a ss 



a 3*^ 


d Pm 















J3 g 1 a 
> asv a 

". ■« g- 3 'c 









g a 



us us Cv 






US <- tO r-4 cc 

<M i 



c-i <m ac ao io 






1" 1 " 



00 © © © r*S 

s s 



1 Ot-N*H | M< 

■c ° _, 1 •*" ^ 

A « cc ' 

-< o 3 g 1 

1 oteoeo us 


8 j 


B'| j «>' 

us ; 


< M 

K 1 us t^orou; © ■* 

.2 us » *- 1 "•" 

© 00 




nK<N«- 1 © 

•o o 

us . 

< £ 3 § 


■* O to <N US 



C ri 

c ^r 5 * 



3 S 







us S 




j - j NO^O 


j ^5 P C "" 

<£ So 1 

& ^ 

1 SSS32 JS : 

C a © ■* ■* os 


3 g | e ^ rH - 
P" i " 




g t-SOO" 

i T O 
us 00 



| * 1 


to [0 ' 

.2 3 ' 

=2 "3. ! 



- >> t - 

a — a 

.2 o 


03 1 -o 

-^ 5 ^ 

















> l'2-i-S 







60390— 42— pt. 32 


Department of Public Welfare, 
Madison County, Huntsville, Ala., May 4, 1942. 

Supplementary Report 

Since making the report to your committee in February, we were able to revise 
the budget of the last 6 months of the fiscal year which will end September 30. 
Unexpended balances from the first 6 months' budget were placed in the four 
categories which receive public assistance checks. The amount of assistance 
given each client is figured on a percentage basis of the budgetary deficiency. 
Our checks in the four categories now average: 



of eases 






According to our budgetary deficiencies and the amount of each check issued? 
we now given an all-around average of 34 percent of the actual minimum need 
for all four categories. We have 57 cases approved and receiving no cash 

The number of cases receiving commodities from the Work Projects Adminis- 
tration awaiting assignment file has been reduced considerably. For the month 
of April, only 45 cases received these surplus commodities from this group. On 
April 14, the chief district social worker from Decatur reported to us that there 
were no men in the awaiting assignment file in Madison County and that there 
were only 110 women. This group is comprised largely of women who are un- 
trained and whose ability consists mainly along common-labor lines. 

Juvenile-delinquency figures continue to rise above those of the same period 
for last year. There has been only one case involving a child from a migrant 
family, and we question the fact that he was involved in the real theft of a bicycle. 

The housing shortage remains acute. Various estimates stating that about 900 
houses were to be built here may be true but up to date only 316 permits have 
been issued within the police jurisdiction. It is said that it will be late summer 
and maybe November before the housing problem will be solved more adequately. 

Rents have not been reduced to any extent. Some of our clients tell us that 
their landlords now collect rent on a weekly basis which amounts to another 
increase for them when there are 5 weeks in a month. 

It is the observation of this department that construction workers on this de- 
fense job have little or no interest in community life or desire to become a part 
of it. Recreational facilities made available to them at the service center have 
not been used. There has been an average of about six couples each week who 
visited the center. No suggestions were made by others as to what use they 
would like to make of the center. 

The churches report that a small number of the workers have attended church 
or shown any interest in programs offered. Ministers and social workers have 
visited frequently in the trailer camps, which now are 12 in number. 

We have heard that workers deplore the lack of commercialized amusements in 
this community. This agency has had few applications for assistance from 
stranded transient workers. 

We understand that the requests for a health center and an addition to the 
hospital from Lanham bill funds have been approved. These are greatly needed 
to meet the needs of an increased population. 

Bootlegging is widespread and we have had a few children who were involved 
in such cases because of their working or in relationship to the parent. 

Child labor regulations are ignored. Children under age are working in cafes, 
until 2 and 3 o'clock in the morning. We have known of three under 15 who 
worked all night. Wages vary from 10 cents an hour with food to $1 a night. 
We do not feel that these violations occur simply as deliberate law violations but 
because there is such a shortage of this kind of cheap adult labor. The Govern- 
ment wage of 50 cents an hour for common labor has caused adults to refuse work 
for the old prevalent wages. 

A forward step has been made for coordinating community services in that the 
heads of all local agencies working along lines of health, welfare, and character 
development have organized a committee under Office of Civilian Defense and its 


prime functions will be to prevent overlapping and duplication of work, and|will 
point up the needs of the community to the defense council through the healthand 
welfare representative. 

The establishment of a defense plant in a small community brings work oppor- 
tunities to the able-bodied unemployed, but the lot of the unemployable Depart- 
ment, of Public Welfare clients along with the children in these homes becomes 
more alarming and deplorable because the assistance check usually goes for an 
increased rent which is out of proportion for the inadequate and indecent living 
quarters which he can afford, and little is left to be spent for food, clothing, medi- 
cal care, or recreation. 

In Alabama, the relief checks are so low that we are compelled to use a per- 
centage basis to compute the amount of assistance from the minimum budgetary 
deficiency. We are only prolonging starvation and rearing children from a group 
who will develop malnourished bodies and twisted minds and grow into mal- 
adjusted members of society under a democratic form of government which is 
supposed to meet the needs of a helpless inarticulate group. 


Mr. Sparkman. Mrs. Humphrey, I wonder if you would tell us 
something about the source of revenue of your department and how 
these funds are earmarked for different purposes? 


Mrs. Humphrey. The local funds aren't. We receive our money 
on a matching basis on the three categories: The old age, aid for the 
blind, and aid for dependent children. We get $2,057.58 a month 
from the county and $150 from the city, and we take that money and 
are able to secure matching funds from the State for the three cate- 
gories; the county, 25 percent, the State, 25 percent, and the Federal 
Government, 50 percent. 

Mr. Sparkman. You might start this by stating what would be 
your total operating revenue each month. 

Mrs. Humphrey. Well — I can give you what our annual budget 
runs. Our budget runs from October 1 to September 30. And last 
October 1 we took the money that would be available each month 
and it made $78,676 for the whole year. 

Mr. Sparkman. Your State, county, and Federal funds? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; on the three categories the State 
matches us dollar for dollar, and the Federal Government matches 
that total dollar for dollar. 

Mr. Sparkman. How much direct relief do you engage in? 

Mrs. Humphrey. We get no Federal funds for that; just State and 
county. In aid to dependent children and neglected children the State 
matches us dollar for dollar. 

Mr. Sparkman. The Federal Government also matches that? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about the part for which you get no match- 
ing funds from the Federal Government? Have you got your budget 
broken down as to the various categories? 

Mrs. Humphrey. No ; that is in the statement made in February. 
We also operate the commodities project, and the expense of operating 
that is paid by the local funds from the county. 

Mr. Sparkman. The commodities are furnished by the Federal 


Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. Then, on the question of administra- 
tion, Mr. Sparkman, with the exception of child welfare, the Federal 
Government furnishes 10 percent, the county 45 percent, and the 
State 45 percent, but on child-welfare service the Children's Bureau 
pays 40 percent, the State 30 percent, and the county 30 percent. 

Mr. Sparkman. I believe you said a while ago that the develop- 
ments around here had not greatly affected your program? 


Mrs. Humphrey. I didn't mean that. I was referring to public 
assistance. Our case load is 30 over last year's on the question of 
public assistance, but it has affected child delinquency. You will 
remember Miss Dunn's testimony that in one area child delinquency 
had increased 500 percent. This was the area to which she referred. 

Mr. Sparkman. Mrs. Humphrey, when you say it increased 500 
percent, it isn't so bad; is it? You started from a low level? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Madison County has had a high rate of juvenile 
delinquency. It did several years ago, when a great many mothers 
worked in the cotton mills at night, and returned in the morning and 
slept until 2 or 3 o'clock in the afternoon. At that time women 
worked mostly at nights. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is this high rate still prevailing? 

Mrs. Humphrey. That 500 percent covered a quarter period — 
September, October, and November 1941, as against September, 
October, and November 1940. With the exception of the month of 
February, there has been about a 50- to 60-percent increase over the 
same periods last year. 

Mr. Sparkman. In other words, it is still abnormally high? 


Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. And one thing we could attribute it to 
is that inadequate school housing out there. That school was built 
to have about 350 children. Then they had 1,135 enrolled. And this 
winter at one time there were between 300 and 400 children on the 
streets. The school authorities didn't make an effort to get them in 
school. They didn't have room to place them. It has been really a 
very acute situation in that particular area. 

Mr. Sparkman. I assume a great many of the children out on the 
street were children of people who had come in town recently? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; but some were local children who had 
been school problems and they took advantage of that situation. 
The plants were running morning and afternoon shifts. And if you 
stopped a child on the street and asked why he wasn't in school, he was 
always on the other shift. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many people do you have on your active 
relief rolls? 

Mrs. Humphrey. In April, 556 public-assistance cases. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many people do you have certified? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Fifty-seven approved and not receiving any 

Mr. Sparkman. Has the recent migration of workers affected hous- 
ing conditions of the people on relief? 


Mrs. Humphrey. Quite acutely. A house that had been renting 
for $4 a month — a 2-room house — would jump up to $8. _ The check 
was ^probably $10. So you can see that practically nothing was left 
after paying rent. I know at one time we had a family of 10 living in 
1 room and a family of 5 or 6 living in 2 rooms. 

Mr. Sparkman. Does that still prevail? 

Mrs. Humphrey. The family of 10 living in 1 room now, I think, 
have 2 rooms, and the father has secured work at the arsenal. He has 
been doing common labor there, carrying water, I think. We have 
removed 9 from the rolls because they have secured jobs at the 
arsenal at common labor. 

Mr. Sparkman. Back to this child delinquency, you referred in 
your written statement to help from the Federal Government to meet 
that problem? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; we have a special worker who has been 
assigned to us by the State department. She is a member of the State 
staff. Social Security provides a public-welfare worker for counties 
with a certain percentage of rural population and there are three of 
those workers in the State of Alabama, and one has been assigned to 
this county. She also does public child service work and aids in 
community organization to carry out the work. She has been here 
since February. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has it been necessary for any of the people that 
come here by reason of these projects to come in your department 
for help? 

Mrs. Humphrey. We have only had six applications, and we helped 
two of those. One was a lady who was looking for her husband. 
The other was a sick man. 

Mr. Sparkman. You helped them out of your own funds? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Without any matching from anyone? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has it been necessary to increase the cash relief 
that you have been giving to your clients? 


Mrs. Humphrey. We have increased it, but not because of an 
increase in appropriations. At the end of 6 months some of the 
counties in Alabama did not receive their local funds. The State 
money had been budgeted and for the various counties that didn't 
receive their local funds that money was withdrawn, and the other 
counties were asked to submit a new' budget. For this last 6 months, 
ours was $44,335. All our money had not been spent, for instance 
on commodities project, because in the month of April we only had 
45 Work Projects Administration cases waiting and drawing com- 
modities, whereas at one time we had 3,000. Because the money 
appropriated to operate that had not been spent, we took that money 
and also the money from a reserve fund which we kept, and the 
State and Federal Government matched it, bringing this budget up. 

Mr. Sparkman. How much increase did that serve to give the 



Mrs. Humphrey. Well, the average check for an old age assistance 
client in February was $9.15, and this past month, $13.07; aid to the 
blind was $9.11, in April $12.33; aid to the handicapped was $8.58 
in February, in April $10.44. 

Mr. Sparkman. That would give some relief, about enough to catch 
up with the increased cost of living? 

Mrs. Humphrey. No, sir; not enough. We estimate that the dollar 
is now worth about 70 percent of what it was, that the relief dollar will 
only buy 70 percent of what it formerly bought. 

Mr. Sparkman. You were not giving them an increased standard 
of living; you were simply trying to help them maintain that same 
standard of living? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; which is a most inadequate level. 

Mr. Sparkman. What are the requirements for obtaining those sur- 
plus commodities? I believe you say they are available to relief 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; all the department of public welfare 
clients are eligible and all the men and their families on the waiting 
Work Projects Administration files are eligible. After a man has 
worked for the Work Projects Administration for a month he is re- 
moved from the commodities list. 


Mr. Sparkman. The increase of workers in this area, and particu- 
larly the increase in the women workers at the arsenal and Redstone 
Ordnance, would probably create new and additional problems of child 
welfare; what steps have you taken to prepare for this development? 
You mentioned the 300 or 400 children on the streets; that was par- 
ticularly true in the West Huntsville area? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. The State department of education, 
you know, has made application for three day-nursery schools, and 
the United Service Organization has taken over the West Huntsville 
Y. M. C. A., and they Will offer a community service program to 
defense workers and people in West Huntsville. The Work Projects 
Administration is operating a recreation program in the county. We 
opened a colored playground on April 15 and we had 1,500 attend the 
first day. And I might add that we expect to use this special child 
welfare worker. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you feel that the Federal Government has done 
about all it could to cooperate with you? 


Mrs. Humphrey. We would like for the Federal Government not 
to require the Southern States, at least the poor States, to put up 
dollar for dollar. You know, Alabama is one of the poorest States in 
the Union. &! 

The Chairman. You are absolutely correct about that. There is a 
difference in capacity to pay in States just as with individual persons. 
This committee has been fighting for that. 


Mr. Sparkman. You might he interested to know that in one of our 
hearings in New England I was asking a witness about variable grants, 
but we were talking about variable school grants then, and 1 asked 
him about it. Dr. Vance of North Carolina had described the South 
as the "seed bed of the Nation, where reproduction runs as high as 
130 percent," whereas in the industrialized Northeast it runs about 
80 percent. And to keep a balanced population, people are being 
siphoned off. And I asked this witness what he thought about 
variable grants, but with particular reference to schools, and he an- 
swered this way: 

"Mr. Congressman, if you raised mules and sent them to us, we 
would pay you for raising them. But if you raise boys and girls and 
send them to us, we don't pay you anything for bringing them up 
and educating them." 

And I thought it was a very apt illustration. 


Mr. Arnold. I was just wondering how your aged get along on $9 
a month. I know in my State the average is $19 or $20. Still I get 
complaints whenever I make a tour of my district. How do they get 
along on $9 a month? 

Mrs. Humphrey. We feel that we are just prolonging starvation. 
Some of these people may have a child who can furnish them with a 
place to stay, but can't help any more. They don't have balanced 
diets, adequate clothing, or medical assistance. We see where a large 
part of the checks are spent for medical assistance and medical sup- 
plies. They have the food commodities. But it is a very low 
standard of living. 

Mr. Arnold. In other words, they just exist and that sort of 
existence is not good for this country. 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir; and it is the same way with all our other 
cases. The aid-to-dependent-children cases — we are rearing chil- 
dren on those same inadequate diets and they can't have the normal 
home life that they should have. 

The Chairman. Just one more question. I understood from Gen- 
eral Ditto that they have 7,000 or 8,000 employed now at the arsenal 
and about 800 at the other plant, but that construction was about 
80-percent complete. And the thought occurred to me when the con- 
struction is complete the load will increase? 

Mrs. Humphrey. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. How many permanent employees will there be at 
the ordnance plant and the arsenal? - 

Mr. Sparkman. General Ditto testified there would be some 5,000 
operating employees and Colonel Hudson testified there would be 
about 3,000 operating employees at the ordnance. . 


Mrs. Humphrey. This might give you a picture of the unemploy- 
ment in this county. In January 1940 the Work Projects Adminis- 
tration had over 2,720 men working and awaiting assignment in this 
county. That has been reduced by these people getting jobs at com- 
mon labor. But he said this morning that the arsenal is nearly 80- 
percent complete. And we will have these people coming back. 


Mr. Payne. We had about 400 Work Projects Administration 
workers on the streets 18 months ago. Now we have an average of 
12 or 14, and our program is practically stopped. In my opinion, 
when the common labor is through in the construction work, those 
rolls will go right back up. I may be wrong. They may find employ- 
ment somewhere else. 

Mr. McGregor. Work Projects Administration work in the county 
has practically disappeared. We have a little Work Projects Adminis- 
tration work in the Fifth District,' in Madison, and a little project 
down towards Whitesburg. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are they using Work Projects Administration 
labor on paving the airport? 

Mr. McGregor. Yes, sir. 

Mrs. Humphrey. May I make a correction? When I said the coun- 
ty funds were not earmarked — when the appropriation was made 65 
percent of the funds were earmarked for old-age assistance. 

Mr. Sparkman. If there is any correction or any additional state- 
ments this panel would like to present, you may do so. Our record 
will be open for about 10 days. 


Mr. Payne. About this welfare, it seems there is quite a difference 
between what the city gives, $150 a month, and what the county 
gives, $2,000 a month. I would like to state — and I am sure you 
know it, John — that it has been the county's burden to take care of 
the poor, not the city's. But the county does receive from the 
State a certain portion of the sales tax that has to be used for health, 
farm extension, and public welfare. 

Mr. McGregor. Most of this money comes out of the general fund. 
Only a small part of our contribution is from the sales tax funds. 

Mr. Payne. Our $150 a month might seem a very small appropri- 
ation. However, the county has always carried that burden. The 
reason that the city came in, I think, was they had to have a child 
welfare worker. 

Dr. Hatchett. I think you failed to ask me if I thought the Fed- 
eral Government had done all it could. I want to make this state- 
ment that if they grant the health center, I will say they have. 

Mr. Sparkman. I might say that they were so anxious to make the 
grant that they had me go right to work on it. 

We have been in a great many places throughout the United 
States, and it would be a revelation to you people to see how fortu- 
nate you are in the various conditions that have prevailed here. 
Part of that is due to the fact that you came rather late in the pro- 
gram and things were well under way. 

The Chairman. I think part of it is due to the vigilance of your 

Mr. Sparkman. Thank you for appearing before us this morning. 



Mr. Arnold. For the record, please state your name, address, and 

Mr. Finley. John B. Finley, 207 West Clinton Street, Hunts- 
ville, Ala., chemical plant operator. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you married? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. You have any children? 

Mr. Finley. Four. 

Mr. Arnold. State their ages and sex. 

Mr. Finley. I have two boys, one 15 and one 13, one girl 11, and 
one boy almost 4. 

Mr. Arnold. Where do they live? 

Mr. Finley. Anniston, Ala. 

Mr. Arnold. How long have you lived in this area? 

Mr. Finley. Two months. 


Mr. Arnold. Will you state for the record the kind of living 
accommodations you have? 

Mr. Finley. I am boarding down here with a lady. There are 24 
of us, I think, staying at that house. We have a bath tub and a 

Mr. Arnold. Just one? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir; and we have two colored girls down there 
doing the cooking and we all use the same facilities. 

Mr. Arnold. You room and board there? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. How many rooms in that house? 

Mr. Finley. Six rooms, not counting the kitchen and dmmg 
room — and they cook and eat in the same room— 7 rooms and a 

Mr. Arnold. Are there any beds in the kitchen? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. How many of you are occupying the same room? 

Mr. Finley. There is only one in the little room I stay in. It is a 
small room. I think at one time it was a kitchen or something because 
there is a sink in it. It is about 10 by 10. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you have two single beds in it? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir; one double bed. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you sleep in shifts? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir. The fellow that rooms with me sleeps in the 
double bed with me. He is a friend of mine from Anniston. We 
room together and sleep together. The other people there, I don't 
know how they make out, but I know there are five people in one 
room, five men. 

Mr. Arnold. What rent do you pay? 

Mr. Finley. $10 per week. 

Mr. Arnold. That is for your room and board? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Arnold. Is there any trouble about the bathroom facilities; 
can you get in there? 

Mr. Finley. There are certain times when you can get in the bath- 
room — maybe 2 or 3 o'clock in the morning. I don't use the bath. 
I bathe at the plant. 

The Chairman. Do you work the bathroom facilities on a schedule? 

Mr. Finley. You just have to take your chances. 

Mr. Arnold. You don't make much use of the bath there — you 
bathe at the plant? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you a construction worker? 

Mr. Finley. No; an operator. 

Mr. Arnold. What kind of work do you do? 

Mr. Finley. I am a chemical-plant operator. Of course what I do 
is, I guess, a military secret. 

Mr. Arnold. Did you have to have some schooling for that job? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir; some training and practical experience. I 
had some experience. 

Mr. Arnold. How much do you make? 

Mr. Finley. $6.24 per day. 

Mr. Arnold. How many days a week do you work? 

Mr. Finley. Five days. I got 6 days last week. 

Mr. Arnold. You work some weeks 5 days and some weeks 6 days? 

Mr. Finley. I have worked 5 days all weeks except last week. 

Mr. Arnold. And you make $6.24 a day? 

Mr. Finley. That is less 3K percent. 

Mr. Arnold. You make a little over $30 a week. Are you able 
to save any money out of that? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Have you bought any War Bonds? 

Mr. Finley. I bought one a few days ago. 

Mr. Arnold. Did you buy it out of your salary? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Your family isn't here? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir; I couldn't find a house. I went to Captain 
LaMarsh and put in an application for a house. 

Mr. Arnold. Is that his duty, to try to find houses for the workers? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. How much rent do you feel you could pay if you could 
find one? 

Mr. Finley. I don't know. They told me it would be 20 percent 
of what I make, and I think that is pretty reasonable. 

Mr. Arnold. That would be about $25 per month? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. If you get the house where will it be located? 

Mr. Finley. The ones they are going to build will be in West 
Huntsville near the arsenal. 

Mr. Arnold. Where will your children go to school? 

Mr. Finley. West Huntsville. 

Mr. Arnold. That is the school the preceding panel was talking 
about being overcrowded? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. There is an application, I believe, for an addition 
to that school. 


Mr. Arnold. Do you like your work? 

Mr. Finley. I like it fine. 

The Chairman. You expect to stay, but you don't want to stay on 
indefinitely, I suppose, without your family? 

Mr. Finley. No, sir; I would like to get them here as quickly as 
I could. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course, none of this Government housing has 
even been started. But you do anticipate, when the housing program 
is put into effect, that you will be able to get a house? 

Mr. Finley. That is what Captain LaMarsh told me ; that it would 
probably be July or August, but I could get a house, and not to worry. 

Mr. Arnold. What transportation do you have? 

Mr. Finley. I ride in with a fellow that works on the shift I do. 

Mr. Arnold. What does that cost you? You pay some on that? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir; about $1.50 a week. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you take your lunch with you? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Is that included in your $10 a week board bill? 

Mr. Finley. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Thank you for coming here. We appreciate it. 

Mr. Sparkman. I would like at this point to offer for the record 
some correspondence we have had. It includes a letter I wrote to 
Governor Dixon and his reply; also a letter you wrote to Mr. P. O. 
Davis. The Governor was very anxious to be here, and told me in 
Washington he wanted to be here. But he told me the President 
had summoned him and some of the members of his staff to Wash- 
ington to discuss war problems and it would be impossible for him to 
attend these hearings; that is also true of Mr. P. O. Davis. And Mr. 
Liles is appearing in the place of Mr. P. O. Davis. 

(The correspondence referred to is inserted here.) 

v ^ Apbil 20, 1942. 

Hon. Frank M. Dixon, 

Governor of Alabama, Montgomery, Ala. 

Dear Frank: The committee has completed its work of investigating problems 
connected with the evacuation of enemy aliens from the west coast. Plans have 
been arranged to hold the postponed Hunts ville hearing on the 7th and 8th of 
Mav. . . 

We are taking this opportunity of again extending to you an invitation to 
appear at the committee's hearings. As mentioned in our previous letter of 
invitation, we believe that the problems existing now and which the Southeast 
faces in the post-war economy are of primary interest. Your appearance before 
the committee would serve to emphasize the need of examining these situations. 

Our investigators have told me how courteously they have been treated in 
Alabama. We want to take this opportunity of thanking you for the many 
courtesies so far extended them. 

If any questions arise with regard to your appearance, you may expect one of 
the committee's investigators to call on you within the next week. 

With all good wishes, I am, 

Sincerely, John J. Sparkman. 

State op Alabama, Executive Office, 

Montgomery, April 27, 191+2. 
Hon. John J. Sparkman, 

House Office Building, Washington, D. C. 
My Dear John: Under present plans, I am expecting to be in Washington 
on May 7 and 8. 

As you know, the President has called for a conference of State officials there at 
that time. 

Yours very truly, 

Frank M. Dixon. Governor. 


April 20, 1942. 
Mr. P. O. Davis, 

Director, Farm Extension Service, 

Alabama Polytechnic Institute, Auburn, Ala. 
Dear Mr. Davis: As promised in its wire of February 21, the committee wishes 
to inform you that the Huntsville hearing originally set for February 24 and ^5 
has been definitely scheduled for Thursday and Friday, May 7 and 8. 

Within the next few days Mr. Francis X. Riley, investigator for the committee, 
will call on you to arrange for your appearance. At that time he will discuss with 
you the material you have presented and arrange for the presentation of any addi- 
tional material which may be necessary to bring your statement up to date. 

If there are any questions that arise, you may contact Mr. Riley at the Post 
Office, Huntsville, Ala. 

With all good wishes, I am 

John H. Tolan, Chairman. 


Athens, Ala., May 6, 1942. 
Francis X. Riley, 

203 Post Office. 
Will appear before committee behalf P. 0. Davis Friday morning. Staying 
Ross Hotel here. 

John L. Liles. 


The Chairman. For the purpose of the record, Mr. Liles, please 
state your name, occupation, and address. 

Mr. Liles. John L. Liles, Jr., extension economist, Auburn, Ala. 

The Chairman. We are glad to have you with us, although we miss 
Mr. Davis, who appeared before us in Montgomery nearly 2 years 
ago. Your statement will be inserted in the record. 


Insofar as the immediate migration in Alabama is concerned, it is caused by the 
fact that farmers can make a great deal more money working in defense industries 
than they can on the farms. No one can blame them for leaving when they can 
multiply their incomes severalfold. It is not possible with present prices of 
agricultural products to earn an income from farms comparable to that which can 
be gained in industrial employment. This migration from farms to cities and 
towns represents a considerable flow of labor, one which is gaining in volume. 

Migration of the type pointed out above has occurred throughout the State, but, 
of course, not to the same extent in all areas. The movement is greatest in the 
vicinity of such defense industries as Childersburg, Tri-Cities, Birmingham, 
Mobile, and now Ozark. There has been a general exodus of farm laborers from 
the Black Belt of Alabama. Most of those persons leaving the Black Belt have 
been Negroes, most of whom have gone to industrial centers outside of the State. 

The pattern of Alabama agriculture in recent years has been changing to a more 
diversified farm organization. Indicative of this change are the facts that: (1) 
The acreage in pasture has increased more than one million acres, 81 percent in 
the past decade, without any decrease in cropland, thus adding nearly a million 
acres to our productive set-up; (2) the acreage devoted to hay has increased from 
444,000 acres in 1930 to 1,038,000 acres in 1940; (3) the acreage planted to corn 
has increased from 2,600.000 in 1930 to more than 3,500,000 acres in 1940. Dur- 
ing the same period, cattle numbers increased 43 percent and hogs 50 percent. 

The above changes in Alabama agriculture are not evenly distributed through- 
out the State, of course. The increase in corn and hay acreage is pretty well 
diffused throughout the State. The acreage in pasture is fairly well scattered, 
but the Black Belt has contributed a great deal in this acreage. 



Farmers in Alabama have more and better farm equipment than they have ever 
had before. The number of tractors has approximately doubled in the last*5 
years. The number of small combines and other power equipment has increased 
greatly, particularly in North Alabama. These gains in equipment should mean 
that farm labor is much more efficient now than formerly, as measured by man 
hours or man days per acre, or as measured by the number of acres which one man 
can efficiently handle. 

There has been a general trend from croppers to wage hands. This change was 
brought about largely by a changing type of agriculture. As the farms here 
shifted from cash-crop production, largely cotton, to a more diversified organiza- 
tion, it became difficult to pay a laborer with diversified crops and livestock. 
Many of the laborers asked for this change in classification because they wanted 
to be paid in terms of cash rather than in eggs, milk, meat and a host of other 
products raised on diversified farms. Cash payments seemed the only way out. 
This change in classification, although it shows a decrease in the number of farm 
operators according to the census, does not necessarily represent a decrease in 
the number of farm people. In fact, the census shows that the number of people 
on farms increased slightly from 1935 to 1940, even though the number of farms 
decreased from 273,009 to 231,000. 

The changes in Alabama agriculture which have been pointed out in the pre- 
ceding paragraphs represent changes in the direction that long time progress is 
desirable. They place the State in a much more favorable position to meet 1942 
production goals than would have been possible without this diversification. In 
order to meet 1942 and 1943 production goals, however, we have a long, hard road 
ahead of us. We know that there will be shortages of materials, equipment, and 
labor. At present the labor shortage is the most acute single farm problem. 

The farm labor problem is acute not only because there is a general or relative 
shortage throughout the State, but because laborers are not available at the time 
when crops must be seeded. The time limit within which crops must be planted 
is rather narrow. If labor is not available for this purpose/an entire year is wasted 
— land, equipment, and products which could have been produced on that acreage. 
This problem will be very acute in regard to our production of peanuts which must 
be planted in the very near future. 

The 1942 production goals for Alabama are as follows: 


1942 goal 


Increase 1942 
over 1941 

399, 000 

810. 462 

399, 715 

172, 667, 401 

234, 171, 000 

171, 883, 000 

445, 558 

59, 332, 865 

229, 000 

38, 900 



176, 000 



152, 400, 000 

183, 155, 000 

i 134, 600, 000 

322, 000 

44, 083, 000 

206, 382 

23, 444 


94, 000 




Cows milked (number) 









i 1940. 

If we are to reach the above goals, and we will reach them, it will require more 
labor than has been required in recent years because the crops and livestock for 
which increases have been asked are higher in labor requirements than the crops 
and livestock formerly grown in the amounts grown by the farm people of Alabama. 
Inasmuch as the production of these crops and livestock has been termed "essen- 
tial" to our war effort, it would seem that some provision should be made to assure 
an adequate labor supply for the production of these crops and livestock. 


The Chairman. Will you please tell the committee what the Exten- 
sion Service has done to assist in the furtherance of the food for victory 



Mr. Liles. Briefly, the part the Extension Service has in the food 
for victory program is working with the farmers in an educational way 
to assist them in producing increased quantities of the things we need 
for this war. That very briefly is our part, working with the farmers 
individually and in groups in order that they may have the advantages 
of the latest technical information. 

The Chairman. Have you adopted a diversified crop program? 

Mr. Liles. We have. Of course, the food for victory program itself 
calls for diversification. This year we have been asked to plant our 
full allotment of cotton. But the production of meat and milk and 
eggs are in themselves calls for diversified farming as far as this State 
is concerned. Particularly is that true in regard to peanuts. We 
have been asked for an increase from 300,000 acres of peanuts to better 
than 800,000 acres. So we have taken it on ourselves to become ac- 
quainted with the production and harvesting of peanuts. That has 
been our number one job this year. 

The Chairman. Do you have land in Alabama suitable for that 

Mr. Liles. Yes, sir; but in order to get that much increase we are 
having to grow peanuts in places we haven't grown them before, al- 
though the land is suitable for the production of peanuts. There were 
no peanuts grown commercially north of Birmingham until this year. 
Now as to the suitability of the land, that might be shown by the fact 
that the highest yield of peanuts was on the experimental station at 
Belle Mina. We can grow peanuts in north Alabama and we will do 
it this year. 

The Chairman. I drove south to the Tennessee River with Con- 
gressman Sparkman, yesterday, and that land appeared to me to be 
very fertile, fine-looking land. Have you got a lot more of that kind 
of land in Alabama? 

Mr. Liles. I might put it this way. About 25 percent of the farm 
people live in what we call north Alabama, the 17 north Alabama coun- 
ties, and they produce about 40 percent of all the agricultural products 
of the State. About half, almost half, of the cotton is produced in 
north Alabama. And by far the best land and the best farmers in the 
State are in north Alabama. The highest priced land and the highest 
yields, you will find right here in the Tennessee Valley. 

little waste land in state 

The Chairman. Have you much waste land in Alabama? 

Mr. Liles. There is some. However, when it comes to the word 
"waste," I think it depends on how it is defined. Much land that 
would be waste for field crops is excellent for the production of timber. 
And that is being planted back to pine. 

The Chairman. I meant a total waste. 

Mr. Liles. I shouldn't think we had a great deal; no. 

The Chairman. The reason I asked that question — I have made 
several round-trips from California to Washington by automobile and 
go through Nevada and Arizona and New Mexico and see millions of 


acres with not a thing growing on them — nothing can — so I still think 
that good, fertile land is something very worth having in this country. 

Mr. Liles. To illustrate that point I might say that we have been 
quite pressed here in Alabama by people on the land. This is an old 
State. We have about 231,000 farm families operating about 20,000,- 
000 acres. The average is 30 acres of crop land per farm family or 7% 
acres per farm person. And with that condition there wouldn't be 
much waste land. 

The Chairman. Originally this committee was created for the pur- 
ipose of investigating the migration of destitute citizens between the 
States, and a year ago last April the life of the committee was extended 
to study defense migration, and that is what we are primarily con- 
cerned with now. Of course the history of this Nation has been one 
of migration. However, this defense migration has been the greatest 
migration in the history of the United States. In his testimony last 
year before the committee Mr. P. O. Davis testified that part of the 
work of the Extension Service was to conduct a program aimed to 
check migration at its source. 

Mr. Liles. I think what Mr. Davis had reference to was that the 
basic cause of migration is inequality of opportunity, where one person 
leaves his environment for a different one because he can better him- 
self, and that, primarily, would mean he could get a better income. 
We have striven to increase the income of the farmer by greater 
efficiency in production. However, even with the increased prices for 
farm production, and even with the increased efficiency in farming in 
the last year, the wages of defense industries have gone up more, pro- 
portionately, than the price of farm products. So the basic problem 
is still before us. 

The Chairman. Has the Extension Service made a study or formed 
an opinion as to the farm labor situation in Alabama? 


Mr. Liles. We have. In February of this year we conducted an 
informal survey among the county agents. We are now working with 
the State employment service, or the Federal Employment Service as 
it is now. And there is coordination between the Federal Employ- 
ment Service in the county and our local county agent in regard to 
farm labor supply-and-demand situation and in regard to such work- 
ers. Together they have made surveys in practically every county 
in the State. A third survey has been made by the Agricultural 
Marketing Service, which comes through the county office. We have 
assisted them. So there are three specific farm labor surveys that 
have been made thus far this year. 

At the present time the Extension Service is cooperating with 
another agency of the Department of Agriculture in determining how 
near we will come to reaching our 1942 goals and obtaining information 
relative to setting our 1943 production goals. I happen to have charge 
of that in north Alabama at the present time, and part of that work 
is studying the farm labor question and how much effect it may have 
on our food-for-victory program, and what can be clone about it. So 
there are four instances in which we have gone into the problem. 



The Chairman. In his testimony last year Mr. Davis stated that 
the three requirements of successful agriculture were land, labor, and 
capital, and what the South lacked was capital. Do you believe, as 
a result of this agricultural revolution, that the South will have suffi- 
cient capital to carry on in the post-war period? 

Mr. Liles. I should think that you might answer that according 
to the way you interpret capital. I think capital might be denned 
not only in terms of monetary capital, but in terms of plant capacity 
and other physical equipment we might also call capital. So far as 
ready cash is concerned, I think there will be sufficient cash and credit 
to carry on after the war. I think we will need a considerable expan- 
sion in plant capacity, and so forth. In answer to that question, if I 
may separate money from physical goods, I would say we would more 
nearly have the money than the capital equipment. 

The Chairman. With all the food we are shipping to war-torn 
Europe and the starving nations of Asia, I can't conceive how we can 
produce too much food ; can you? 

Mr. Liles. I think in rare instances we might produce too much of 
one thing for a short while. However, I am not worried about the 
South producing too much food at any time in the near future, or in 
the post-war period. I don't think the South will produce as much 
food and feedstuff as it will consume. 

The Chairman. Will you indicate to the committee what steps 
you believe the Federal Government can take to assist agriculture in 
the southeast in the war period? 

Mr. Liles. Do you mean in reaching our food-for-victory goals, or 
in the whole agricultural program? 

The Chairman. In the whole, over-all picture. 


Mr. Liles. I think that question could be divided into about two 
parts, if I may do that. The first is what must be done immediately 
in order to assist in reaching our food-for-victory goals, and the other 
is what can be done as to a long-time program. So far as reaching 
our food-for-victory goals, there are two things which are our greatest 
handicaps. One is the materials with which to get production. The 
other is labor. By materials, I mean mainly fertilizer. Most of the 
commercial fertilizer used in the United States is used in the South. 
Our production depends on getting adequate fertilizer. 

The Chairman. Are you getting it? 

Mr. Liles. We have only a part of what we got last year. To 
date we have about one-third of the nitrogen, less than that in terms 
of nitrate of soda, which we use as side dressing. The main shortage 
has been nitrogen. We will find reduced yields this year; and next 
year, unless the situation is changed, it will be even worse. So far as 
farm labor is concerned, that is the second limiting factor at the present 
time. A great deal of help has left the farm and gone to the cities, 
to industry, and to the armed forces. We have taken it upon ourselves 
as a State organization to work through the rural schools in order to 
use that labor. Most of the schools are at present adopting a 6-d ay- 
week program, by which children will go to school and will be let out 


in time to help plant the crops. They will hold school in the summer 
and close in the middle of September for about 8 weeks so the students 
can help in harvesting the crops. That seems the best thing we can 
do in regard to farm labor; use family labor. We can't compete with 
the wages offered by industry, and it seems that a better use of 
family labor is one thing we can do. There is also a shortage to 
some extent not only in farm machinery, but also in wire — hog wire, 
chicken wire — and we are running into shortages in a number of steel 

Those are the things that are facing us insofar as our victory goals 
are concerned. Just what the Federal Government can do with regard 
to that, I don't know. I would offer one suggestion that I think would 
help the farmers tremendously, and that is, if advance notice could 
be given to farmers as to whether these materials would be available, 
and, if so, in what amounts. Obviously a farmer has to plan his 
operations 6 to 12 months in advance. And it would help him if he 
could know how much of these materials will be available next year. 


The Chairman. The demand for fertilizer is far greater in the South 
than in the North and Middle West and West. Is it because some of 
these farmers have been row cropp ig for generation after generation? 

Mr. Liles. That is one reason. Then there is a geographical reason, 
several geographical reasons. One is that this section didn't have the 
fertility to begin with that the other sections had, with regard to natural 
fertility. In the second place, our country is rough and rolling, and we 
lost a great deal by erosion. A third thing is you will find the further 
south you go in any country — unless you run into unusual circum- 
stances, such as an old lake bed or something of the sort — you have a 
smaller proportion of nitrogen in the soil. Nitrogen is most important 
in the production of corn and o^e of the most important elements in 
the production of cotton. Thus, we have a number of reasons why we 
have to use more commercial fertilizer here. Then too, the crops we 
grow is another reason. 

The Chairman. There really isn't a State in the Union that is 
comparable to any other State in the Union, and that is a picture I 
try to keep in mind. They compare us with England. England is 
smaller in area than the State of Oregon. So, in one sense, we have 
48 Nations instead of States. Tuat over-all picture is quite a gigantic 
one in this country, isn't it? 

Mr. Liles. Yes, sir; I have worked in this same work 3 years in 
Wisconsin and a year and a half in Illinois, so I can appreciate your 

diversification in the state 

Mr. Sparkman. I was interested in what you said about diversifi- 
cation of agriculture in the State of Alabama. In your annual report, 
I believe it was the Extension Service's annual report, there was a 
table that showed the cotton revenue at $76,000,000; is that about 
right for last year? 

Mr. Liles. Last year cotton was about that. 

Mr. Sparkman. And, as I recall, livestock and dairy products ran 
at about $38,000,000? 

60396—42 — pt. 32 5 


Mr. Liles. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. That was the second highest crop. That is quite 
an advancement for this State, isn't it? 

Mr. Liles. It is. 

Mr. Sparkman. I was particularly interested to notice a few months 
ago that cotton had fallen to third place in Montgomery County, 
being preceded, as I recall it, first by dairy products, second by live- 
stock. Do you think that is a pretty general movement throughout 
the State? 

Mr. Liles. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You are satisfied with the progress of diversifica- 


Mr. Liles. Not satisfied, but we are encouraged. And I might 
give you just a little more along that line. As I mentioned a few 
minutes ago, at the present time we are checking up to see just what 
we are doing. We have increased production of poultry and eggs and 
milk, beef cattle and hogs, a great deal in the last 10 years. Our 
income from livestock and livestock products was the greatest in the 
history of our State last year. We have made more progress in the 
last 2 years, I think, than in the history of our State. We have five 
new cheese plants built within the last 2 years and a number of other 
things. We are running into some limitations at the present time 
that are handicapping us somewhat. We had a condensery ready to 
be built and can't build it; also three cheese plants, and we can't 
build them. But we are willing to accept whatever the war effort 
may mean. We are increasing diversification and at the same time 
we are doing a better job in the production of cotton. We are handling 
the cotton land better, growing longer staple, doing a better job of 
ginning. We are trying to carry forward a balanced program. 

Mr. Sparkman. The whole program has been intensified? 

Mr. Liles. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Sparkman. With reference to peanut growing, have you had 
very fine cooperation? 

Mr. Liles. We have had the finest in the world. I might give an 
illustration of it. There is a section in Marshall County, an adjoining 
county, known as Gunters Mountain. I was surprised to learn 
that nearly two-thirds of the peanut acreage there was on new land. 
They went out and cleared new land in order to plant the peanuts. 
They didn't do that for money, either, for you can't make money 
clearing new ground to plant peanuts. That is indicative of the 
spirit of cooperation we have had. 

Mr. Sparkman. I was interested in looking at the table you have 
presented showing increased production of 1942 over 1941. It calls 
for quite a stepping up in production. Are these increases coming 
from every individual farm? 

Mr. Liles. No, sir; not from each individual farm. Let's check on 
some. So far as peanuts are concerned, the major increase will come 
in southeast Alabama, in the regular peanut region. The other 
counties were assigned quotas, and those counties in turn broke it 
down. The counties north of Birmingham are called on for 8 percent 


of their cropland for peanuts this year. As far as eggs are concerned, 
that is more generally applicable to all farms than any of the other 
commodities. The first 3 months of this year there was a 22-percent 
increase. This year we are called on for a 35-percent increase, but 
a 22-percent increase for the first 3 months, we think, is encouraging. 
We are called on for a 13-percent increase in milk production. 

Mr. Sparkman. Will that be with the big herds? For instance, do 
you expect a man with 50 cows to increase his production that much, 
or do you try to do that with the little farmers with one or two cows? 


Mr. Llles. The first part is grade A milk. We are short on grade A 
milk in the State at the present time because of Army camps and 
defense projects. We have asked the big people who produce grade A 
milk to increase production. When it comes to increased milk to go 
to cheese plants and condenseries, it comes from smaller farmers, 
say from 7- to 4-cow farmers. The third part of that is this. We 
have asked all farmers to increase production of milk for family 
consumption. We don't drink nearly enough milk in this State, even 
the farmers themselves. 

Mr. Sparkman. I notice you ask for a 7 percent increase in number 
of cows milked and a 13-percent increase in milk production? 

Mr. Liles. To increase the production of cattle is biologically 
sound. We feel it isn't advisable to go out of the State and buy the 
cows. That would only increase the problem of the other States. 

Mr. Sparkman. How do you obtain a 13 percent increase in milk 

Mr. Liles. By heavier feeding and improved management; mainly 
by heavier feeding. 

Mr. Sparkman. You are getting cooperation from the farmers 
generally with the whole program? 

Mr. Liles. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. I want to thank you very much. I think you 
have given the committee some very valuable information. I wish 
I knew as much about farming as I think you do. 

The committee will recess until 2 o'clock this afternoon. 


THURSDAY, MAY 7, 1942 

afternoon session 

House of Representatives, 
Select Committee Investigating 

National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 
The Chairman." The committee will please gome to order. Our 
first witness this afternoon is Mr. Randolph. 


Mr. Sparkman. For the record will you please state your namej 
address, and in what capacity you appear as a witness? 

Mr. Randolph. I am Walter L. Randolph, president of Alabama 
Farm Bureau Federation. My address is Shepherd Building, Mont- 
gomery, Ala., where we have our headquarters. 

Mr. Sparkman. As you know, this committee is concerned pri- 
marily with the problems developing from the migration caused by 
the war program. The committee is therefore interested, in this 
hearing, to learn what opportunities and what problems the war is 
bringing to the South. You might start by telling us what part 
your organization is taking in our food-for-victory program. 

Mr. Randolph. The Alabama Farm Bureau is striving in every 
way possible, through county and community organization and edu- 
cational programs, to encourage farmers to produce food for victory. 
I think that it is safe to say in this State we will meet those goals set 
by the Secretary of Agriculture. 


Of course, the largest increase we are called on here to make is in 
the acreage of peanuts for oil, and, as I recall the figures, I 
believe last year we planted in round numbers 300,000 acres of pea- 
nuts in this State, both for edible uses and oil purposes. This year 
we are called on to increase that — I don't recall the exact figures- — to 
in excess of 800,000 acres. That is a considerable increase. Of 
course that is not easy to do, because it calls on us to have to grow pea- 
nuts in areas where peanuts have never been grown on a commercial 
scale, but only in small patches for home use. But the last I heard 
of the progress of that program, the goal will come close to being met 
in this State this year. I have found farmers everywhere enthusiastic 
about increased production that they are called on for. 



Mr. Sparkman. Certain portions of the State are more adaptable 
to the growing: of peanuts that others? 

Mr. Randolph. Apparently so. But in the past nearly all of the 
peanuts in the State have been grown in southeast Alabama, and in 
nine counties principally. But this year there will be some peanuts 
grown in all the counties of the State. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you experienced any difficulty in getting 
farmers to shift over from cotton to other types of needed crops? 

Mr. Randolph. That is a very important question, but it is some- 
what difficult to answer yes or no. I would say this about the general 
subject you have in mind. For many, many years various people, 
leading farmers, agricultural colleges, and farm publications have 
advocated that agriculture in this part of the country be more diversi- 
fied, and I assume that is what you have in mind. As the members 
of the committee know, for several years now we have been trying to 
adjust that program. Our cotton acreage is less now than it normally 
is and the additional acreage is being used for production of food, 
soil-building crops, and so on. So I would say we are making con- 
siderable progress along the line you mentioned. 

Mr. Sparkman. Let me ask you this question with reference to 
peanuts. Now, assuming when this food-for-victory program is 
over with, and we go back into the controlled program, what is going 
to happen to these counties that have diverted cotton acreage to 
peanut acreage? Will they be allowed to grow peanuts? 


Mr. Randolph. My opinion is, Mr. Congressman, there's not a 
great deal of cotton acreage being diverted to peanuts. 

Mr. Sparkman. You think they are using extra acreage for that? 

Mr. Randolph. I think there might be some diverted on some farms 
to peanuts, but I think we are getting our peanut acreage from other 
acreage besides cotton. I think that perhaps we will plant about as 
much as our allotment in our State this year, maybe a little more than 
in past years. Now, farmers have consistently planted under their 
allotments for cotton in this State — about 12 percent under their allot- 
ment. And I think that that 12 percent, or whatever it is, might be 
in peanuts this year. 

Mr. Sparkman. Aside from land being diverted from cotton, suppose 
you get these people in the habit of planting peanuts — because after 
all the planting of crops is more or less a habit — and they develop 
that habit of growing peanuts and marketing peanuts; when it is all 
over with, how are they to be taken care of? I realize, of course, 
that is more or less speculative. 

Mr. Randolph. I have tried to answer that question a good many 
times. I don't think you can consider the growing of peanuts in that 
light. The Government said we need them to win the war, and we 
are going to grow them and do the best we can. 

Mr. Sparkman. I heartily agree, but I am thinking of after this is 


Mr. Randolph. Unless there is a market for these peanuts after this 
war is over, farmers will not continue to grow them, because they can't 
make any money out of it. The price would get so low they would 
discontinue them. 


Mr. Sparkman. You think economic conditions would probably 
control it? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir; to some extent. But, as you know, in 
our law we have a very fine peanut section, and, insofar as legislation 
is concerned, that law, I think, would take care of the situation, and, 
if it didn't, it could certainly be amended in the light of experience. 
As to whether there will be a market for these peanuts as oil is a tre- 
mendous subject. I am not prepared to discuss it. You are aware, 
of course, of the fact that the reason we are short on vegetable oil is 
that we are not getting the customary imports from the Asiatic coun- 
tries and the Pacific islands. I think someone said that the attack 
on Pearl Harbor resulted in a decrease of about 2,000,000,000 pounds 
of oil annually. Now as to whether we continue to cut down on the 
import of vegetable oil after the war is over, depends on a number of 
things. First, it depends on who wins the war. We, of course, are 
determined that we will, and I assume we will. But, if we didn't, 
that situation wouldn't change so far as imports of oil is concerned. 

The Chairman. As a matter of fact, we have plenty of crude oil in 
this country. The Navy has millions of acres of untapped reserves. 
The trouble is in transportation. 

Mr. Randolph. I am speaking of vegetable oil, not petroleum. 
I am speaking of animal and vegetable oil, and fats, used to a great 
extent for food. Of course they are used for a lot of other purposes, 


The Chairman. You are correct. We imported a great deal of 
that. Mr. Randolph, is there presently any farm labor shortage? 

Mr. Randolph. It is generally reported to me that there is a 
shortage of farm labor in this State. 

The Chairman. That is more acute in some places than in other 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir. It is more acute where you have defense 
industries. In fact, I think that is one of the chief phases of this 
migration problem which you are studying now insofar as this State 
is concerned — the migration of farmers off the farm to better paying 
jobs in industry. And there has been a considerable amount of that 
which has taken place in this State. Of course, it affects the situation 
right around plants more than anywhere else. 

The Chairman. Suppose there is — and there probably will be — 
a farm labor shortage; where will they get the help, from what sources? 

Mr. Randolph. I wish I knew the answer to that question. Some 
indications of what the labor situation on farms is is given in a publica- 
tion I have here called Farm Labor Report, issued "by the Bureau of 
Agricultural Economics. It says: "The supply of farm labor as a 
percentage of normal is 59 percent in Alabama." 

meaning of "normal" labor supply 

The Chairman. What do they mean by "normal"? 

Mr. Randolph. You ask what is meant by normal. They 
say they gained these figures from farmers through questionnaires sent 
out. And their farm reporters were asked to report the present farm 
labor supply and demand at current wage rates as a percentage of the 


normal supply and demand at this season. The reports thus obtained 
reflect the individual reporter's appraisal of the current supply and 
demand situation in his locality in relation to what he believes to be 
the usual or normal condition. In other words, I believe this part of 
the Federal establishment that carries on this work has been known 
as the Division of Crop and Livestock Estimates and comes under the 
Agricultural Marketing Service now. _ They send out questionnaires 
to farmers over the country and this is the result of the replies they 
got back. When they asked that man what the supply of farm labor 
is compared to what he considers normal, he gives his own definition 
of normal. According to the figures for this State, the supply of farm 
labor is less than normal, whatever normal is. 

The Chairman. What about transportation? Is that going to 
enter into the farm labor supply? 

Mr. Randolph. What type of supply, or, rather, transportation? 

The Chairman. The shortage of transportation on account of cur- 
tailment of rubber. 

Mr. Randolph. Some, but not as much in this State as in other 
States. . n 

The Chairman. Has the Farm Bureau got any ideas about that? 


Mr. Randolph. We have thought about that a great deal. We 
have a farm labor committee in the State, not a Farm Bureau labor 
committee, but a farm labor committee, made up of representatives 
of various Federal and State agencies interested in that subject. It 
seems in this State that there may be a partial solution to the problem 
that does not involve transportation of workers long distances, 
with possibly the. exception of some areas, fruit and vegetable areas 
like Baldwin. Baldwin County is something like California. 

The 'Chairman. Take this district, Madison County, has a survey 
been made as to the demands for farm labor here through the Farm 

Mr. Randolph. No; the Farm Bureau is just a voluntary organiza- 
tion. It has no connection with the Government. 

The Chairman. I don't know that you understood my question. 
Here's the question: Are any surveys being made in this State of 
the counties as to the necessity for farm labor for the crops? 

Mr. Randolph. This committee on farm labor requested that a 
survey of that nature be made. Just what has been done in that 
connection I am not in a position to report. 

The Chairman. The trouble is that the farmer makes his applica- 
tion at the last minute? 

Mr. Randolph. That is probably true in a great many cases. 
However there is — and I am sure you know this— the United States 
Employment Service; they have what they call farm placement men. 
I am not sure they have one in every county, but they have one in a 
great many places in the State, and as a result of the work of this 
particular committee I have been speaking of, we have tried to get 
that group, together with various people working in agricultural 
service agencies, in pretty close contact. That principally is the work 
done along that line. 


The Chairman. Don't you think that this war will cause a shifting 
to new crops in the South? 

Mr. Randolph. I should think so. We have been called upon to 
produce great quantities of milk and eggs and beef cattle and hogs and 
other food products. Whether that will cause a permanent increase 
in the production of those products, I don't know. It might. I don't 
know^ whether it will or not. 


Mr. Sparkman. What about the effect of the draft on farm labor? 

Mr. Randolph. Well — naturally, Mr. Sparkman, there have been 
a good many farm boys drafted and in many cases that has resulted 
in less men to work on farms than otherwise would be the case. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you think you are going to feel it very keenly, 
or do you think it will just tighten up conditions among those that 

Mr. Randolph. It appears, from what farmers tell me as I go about, 
that probably people leaving the farm for better paying jobs in in- 
dustry will have and has had probably more effect than the draft. 
The Selective Service System has been very fine in its attitude about 
deferring farm boys. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you ever had any cause to complain against 
the working of the Selective Service as such with reference to farm 


Mr. Randolph. I could hardly say that there is no cause to com- 
plain, but I say their attitude from a national and State standpoint 
has been very fine. A good many of our county organizations have 
complained to me about the deferment locally. I find that in many of 
the cases I have looked into, the farm boys didn't want to be deferred. 
They wanted to fight. 

Mr. Sparkman. You might be interested to know that about a 
week or 10 days ago I was at a dinner with quite a group of people 
from Congress and different departments, and the speaker of the 
evening was one of the officers of the National Selective Service 
System down in Washington. After he discussed it somewhat, there 
was a question period. All of us were asking questions. I asked 
him about farm deferment, deferment of farm labor, and he made 
the remark that the difficulty in the Southern States had not been in 
passing on the question of deferment, but in getting those boys to be 
willing to accept deferment. 

Mr. Randolph. Yes; I find that the case. I am sure there have 
been cases where farm boys would have probably rendered a greater 
service to their country if they had stayed on the farm and produced 
food. It is a tremendous problem to handle all that. And it is very 
hard to be critical about the manner in which it is handled by the 
local boards. 

Mr. Sparkman. It is rather hard, as a matter of fact, to detect 
■ahead of time whether or not there is to be a shortage of farm labor? 

Mr. Randolph. It is. 


Mr. Sparkman. I remember someone said at one of our hearings 
that in a time of depression maybe six people will do the work on a 
farm, when in tight times two persons could do it. And I presume 
that is true. 

Mr. Randolph. We have to do our best with those left. 

Mr. Sparkman. Mr. Tolan asked you about diversification in this 
State, and I know you have followed agriculture in that respect in 
this State with much interest and for many j^ears you were connected 
with the Southern Division of the Department of Agriculture. Is it 
not true that the change in agriculture toward a more diversified 
program that has occurred in the last few years has been a matter of 

Mr. Randolph. That is true. 


Mr. Sparkman. Do you feel confident that the quota assigned to 
this State will be met in the food-for-victory program this year? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes; I do. In the case of peanuts the Department 
of Agriculture issued an "intentions to plant" report which indicates 
for the country as a whole we might not meet the peanut goal. I 
didn't see any figures particularly for this State. My impression is 
that this State will be able to meet its goal. I am not certain of that, 
because it is a tremendous increase. It is quite possible that farmers 
who have not had experience growing them will not get as good 
yields — not only possible, quite probable. I have been planting 
peanuts on my place 3 years, and we are getting better yields now than 
when we started. 

Mr. Arnold. I don't know, Mr. Randolph, whether you have 
answered all these questions or not. Did you answer a question as 
to the probable effect of a shortage of transportation on farm labor? 

Mr. Randolph. I am not sure I answered it. I talked about it. 
I would like, before I leave, to say to the committee that I feel that 
the primary cause of the migration of the farmer from the farm is 
due to the disparity of income between the farm people and other 
groups in the population. I also feel that any elimination of that 
disparity would tend to eliminate a part at least of the migration of 
the farmer away from the farms to other places. 


I would like to place in the record these tables, which you probably 
have already seen. One of them relates to farm prices, prices farmers 
pay and factory pay rolls per worker for the years 1910 to 1942, using 
the period of 1910 to 1914 as base of 100. The farm prices in February 
of this year were 145 percent of what they were in that 5-year pre-war 
period, and the prices the farmers paid for what they were buying 
was 147 percent. It doesn't have the figures for February, but for 
January of this year the factory pay rolls per employed worker were 
299 percent of what they were in 1910 to 1914. The other table shows 
food costs in relation to family income. I am not sure that directly 
connects with the problems of this committee, but certainly it 
does indirectly, because it gives some indication of the way in which 
farmers are furnishing food for the Nation and food for the armed 



forces. It gives here nonfarm family income and cost of family food 
purchases from 1913 to 1941. Now in 1913, '14, '15, and '16 I 
notice 32 percent of the income of nonfarm families was paid out for 
food; whereas, in 1941 only 23 percent was, and in February of this 
year only 22 percent was. I want to call your attention to that fact, 
because many people seem to think that food is too high and that the 
farmers are not producing food cheap enough for the public. But 
the figures seem to bear out the contrary contention. 
(Following are the tables referred to:) 

(The following tables, compiled by the Bureau of Agricultural Economics, were 
introduced by the witness at this point) 

Food costs in relation to family income — nonfarm family income and cost of family 
food purchases, 1913-41 




1, 935 


cost of 

all foods 

Food cost 
as per- 











1939 . 



December 1941 
January 1942... 
February 1942. 



all foods 

































Food cost 
as per- 

of income 

Farm prices, prices farmers pay and factory pay rolls per worker — 1910-4.2 
[Index numbers] 


Farm prices 

1909 to July 
1914 = 100) 





per em- 
worker > 


Farm prices 

1909 to July 
1914 = 100) 



= 100) 

per em- 
worker ' 





















1923 .. 





1942— January. 


1 Approximations— transformed from a 1935-39=100 1 



Mr. Arnold. Don't you think — and I am a farmer myself— don't 
you think the farmers are in the most fortunate position at this time 
of any group in this country? Take, for instance, a worker in a 
defense plant who makes $2,000 a year, has a wife and 3 or 4 children, 
spends $600 a year for rent and $600 for food and pays an income tax 
on a salary of $2,000, while the farmer has most of his food without 
buying it, and probably owns the land and doesn't pay income tax on 
what he spends on food and rent, if he rents the farm? 


Mr. Randolph. I would say I could not agree with your statement. 

Mr. Arnold. You think a man in a defense plant is better off than 
a farmer today? 

Mr. Randolph. I think a man working in industry or a defense 
plant is certainly better off than the farmer as a group. That was 
the main point of these figures. 

Mr. Arnold. But those figures don't take into consideration that 
the farmer is getting his foodstuff, or most of it, furnished him without 
having to figure it in his income tax, whereas a worker has to pay in- 
come tax on his salary, regardless of what it costs him for food and 

Mr. Randolph. That is probably true with the better-off farmer. 
I am talking about the average. In Alabama in 1940 the average farm 
income from row crops and livestock was $390 and in addition to that 
they received the average Government benefit checks that amounted 
to $112 per farm family. I think we have about five people to the 
farm in this State. That makes the farm income per month per capita 
$8. I think that is why farmers migrate. That situation was better 
in 1941 to some extent/because it was something over $600 instead of 
$500, which would mean $10 per month per capita. That is a piti- 
fully low income. 

TThe Chairman. I agree with you that the farmer is entitled to good 
prices at this time. 


Mr. Randolph. I would like to say for the information of this 
committee that the farm group as a whole have not asked for farm 
prices any higher than parity prices. We are perfectly willing to take 
a fair price for the products we grow, and that is what we define as a 
fair price. We resent the attempt to change the present price control 
act, for it would prevent the farmer from getting parity prices. 

Mr. Sparkman. What you want is an average of parity? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir. The President in his message to Congress 
asked that Congress amend the Price Control Act so a ceiling would 
be placed on farm products at 100-percent parity. It is obvious it 
would be impossible for a farmer to get an average parity price for 
his products if the ceiling were set at 100 percent of parity, because 
farm prices fluctuate, and, if that was done, it would fluctuate always 
below that ceiling, never above it. We asked that Congress be good 
enough to insert in the present price control bill the provision that the 


price ceiling on farm products be fixed at not less than 110 percent 
parity. We have a floor under a great many farm products at 85 percent 
of parity price, and it was felt that a fluctuation between 85 percent of 
parity price as a floor and 110 percent of parity price as a ceiling 
would give us an opportunity, if marketing conditions justify it, of 
getting during a marketing season an average of the parity price. 
We have tried to be fair about it and keep the public interest in mind. 
And we are considerably disturbed over recent efforts to change that 
bill which was agreed to by the Secretary of Agriculture, by the Price 
Administrator, voted by Congress and signed by the President. I 
am very proud that Congress did treat the farmer fairly on that bill. 

Mr. Sparkman. You stand for 110 percent parity price in order 
that farmers might get 100 percent parity price the season through? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir; we presented that to Congress. I cer- 
tainly thank you for the opportunity of appearing. 

The Chairman. We thank you for appearing here. I am glad to 
be here, especially with the distinguished Congressman from Alabama. 
I might say that the folks in his district and the people of Alabama 
as a whole are very proud of him. 

Mr. Ferris is our next witness. 


Mr. Sparkman. You appeared before us sometime ago in Wash- 
ington, I believe? 1 

Mr. Ferris. Yes, sir. I am sorry the chairman of the Tennessee 
Valley Authority, Mr. David Lilienthal, was unable to appear at this 

Mr. Sparkman. Mr. Lilienthal called me in Washington and said 
he wouldn't be able to be here. I might say when the previous 
hearings were set for Huntsville, Mr. Lilienthal was due to appear, 
and we were unable to hold the hearings, because we were sent to 
the west coast to study the Japanese evacuation problem. And I 
told Mr. Lilienthal that we were the ones running out on him. 


At the time of your previous appearance before us, you outlined 
the five major activities of the Tennessee Valley Authority. First, 
the activities directed to rebuilding the soil and stimulating agricul- 
ture. Second, activities directed toward the encouragement of 
forestry. Third, activities directed toward aiding enterprise by 
providing new industrial processes and facts concerning resources of 
the region and their possible uses. Fourth, activities directed toward 
establishing mass consumption of electric power. Fifth, activities 
relating to water control in the interest of flood conditions, naviga- 
tion, and recreation. Now, I wonder if you might state to us briefly 
just how the war program has affected those five different parts of 
your program? 

Mr. Ferris. I think probably the best thing is to start with the 
first on the list, the soil-building program. As a matter of fact, it 
was one th eme I had prepared for. May I follow my notes on that? 

i See pp. 3797-3853, part 9, hearings of this committee. 


Mr. Sparkman. Certainly, and I might say you have supplied us 
with a very fine and full written statement, and this statement will 
be printed in full at this point in the record of these hearings. 

(The matter referred to is as follows:) 


I. General Statement Concerning the Position of the Tennessee Valley 
Area and the Southeast as a Whole in Relation to the Migration 

During the decade between the close of the first World War and the beginning 
of the economic depression in 1929, the Southeast, as the committee knows, was 
one of the principal regions of migrant origin. As the industrial boom gathered 
momentum in the manufacturing centers of the East and the Middle East, as the 
agricultural economy of the South grappled with problems of depleted soil fertility 
and low farm income, a steady stream of workers flowed northward in search of 
increased economic opportunities for themselves and their families. This migra- 
tion, to a large extent, was one not of destitute persons but of productive workers 
who constituted an economic asset. With the beginning of the depression, the 
trend was temporarily reversed. As industry shut down and jobs disappeared, 
people who had left southern farms began to return, adding further to the strain 
on the farm economy of the region. 

Today, with industry again booming as a result of the war production program, 
the industrial centers are again exerting a pull upon the available labor supply. 
In the Southeast this has resulted in a movement from the farms to urban com- 
munities and to the large construction projects which are now in progress within 
the region. It has resulted, also, to some extent, in a movement of workers from 
the region to industrial centers in other areas. The opportunities for employ- 
ment within the region are such, however, that there has not been any wholesale 
migration of workers from the region comparable to that which took place in the 
1920's. These employment opportunities, however, as will hereafter be pointed 
out in greater detail, arise largely as a result of expansion in the heavy goods 
industries, new construction projects, and location within the region of arsenals, 
ordnance works, and other plants producing for strictly wartime needs. The war 
production program has not resulted within the southeastern region in any whole- 
sale conversion of peacetime fabricating and processing industry to wartime uses, 
for the region has never possessed such industry on any large scale. Neither has 
the war program resulted, to any great extent, in the establishment of that type 
of industry in the region. And it was largely the lack of such industry which 
resulted in the Southeast's becoming a region of migrant origin during the 1920's, 
and which may result in its becoming so again, under similar circumstances, if its 
economy is not brought into better balance. 

Great migrations into already congested industrial areas during periods of 
great business activity, whether caused by war production or by peacetime 
booms, are merely symptomatic of an underlying economic condition which has 
existed in the United States. That condition is one which is characterized by the 
concentration of large-scale industry and of manufacturing activity in the north- 
eastern section of the country. To the Southeast, the Southwest, and other "out- 
lying" regions is left the task of growing the agricultural products, of digging the 
minerals, of cutting the lumber, and of furnishing the other raw materials which 
are required. The job of manufacturing the raw materials into finished goods of 
high value has been performed almost exclusively in the region north of the Ohio 
and east of the Mississippi, and to an ever-increasing degree by large-scale enter- 
prises rather than by small, diversified industrial units. 

It is almost axiomatic that the community or region which depends predomi- 
nantly on the production of raw materials is a community or region of a lower 
standard of economic prosperity than is the community or region which is more 
extensively engaged in the processing and manufacture of raw materials into fin- 
ished goods. And as long as the best paying function of our economic machin- 
ery — the manufacture of finished goods — is concentrated in one region, there will 
be migrations into that region during periods of peak industrial activity and 
migrations out of it during periods when the industrial machinery is slowing down. 


The concentration of the fabricating industry in the Northeast has been 
defended on a number of grounds. The argument has been advanced that the 
region has certain natural advantages which make such concentration a logical 
development, that the Northeast and it alone has the necessary supply of skilled 
labor requisite to the manufacturing process, and that in any event economic 
specialization by particular regions represents a sound type of economic organ- 

Unquestionably, particular regions of the country are naturally fitted by reason 
of differences in climate and other natural conditions to make particular contri- 
butions to the flow of national goods and services. California and Florida 
possess obvious inherent advantages in connection with the raising of citrus 
fruits. The Tennessee Valley area possesses inherent advantages with respect 
to the production of cheap electricity. Numerous other examples of the fitness 
of particular regions for particular types of economic activity might readily 
be cited. 

There is no valid reason, however, why the Southeast or any other region 
should be disqualified to carry on an important share of the country's processing 
and manufacturing activities. When great projects have been undertaken in 
the southeastern region, requiring large numbers of skilled laborers, as in the 
case of the program of the Tennessee Valley Authority, no difficulty has been 
experienced in recruiting the necessary labor largely within the region itself. 
Workers in the region have evidenced a high ability to learn quickly the task of 
handling powerful machinery, and training programs undertaken by the Authority 
and other employers in the region have been uniformly successful in imparting 
necessary aptitudes and skills. Indeed, the existence of a labor supply in the 
southeastern region requisite to the carrying out of the manufacturing process is 
established by the extent to which workers from the region have in the past been 
utilized by industry in the Northeast. 

The real impediment to the establishment of fabricating and processing indus- 
tries in the Southeast is largely one of inertia, that is, the fact that such industry 
at the present time is concentrated in the Northeast leads to the establishment of 
new industries in the same region where such industries already exist. The war 
production program has provided a demonstration of this fact. When the neces- 
sity for accelerating and expanding the manufacturing process to produce finished 
goods needed for war purposes arose, it seemed inevitable to industrialists located 
in the Northeast that such acceleration and expansion of industry for war should 
necessarily take place almost exclusively in that region where industry for peace 
was located. Moreover, the tendency has been to place the task of manufacturing 
war goods primarily in the hands of large-scale enterprises as primary contractors. 
Smaller enterprises have had the greatest difficulty in obtaining war orders either 
as primary contractors or as subcontractors. This condition has tended still 
further to concentrate the manufacturing process in the Northeast, since it is there 
that large-scale enterprises are chiefly located. Conversely, in a region such as 
the Southeast where such manufacturing enterprises as do exist are largely of a 
small-scale character, the effect is more and more to force the closing down of small 
manufacturing industries producing peacetime goods instead of to bring about 
their conversion and expansion for war production. There is great danger, there- 
fore, that the war-production program may lead to an even greater concentration 
of fabricating and processing industry in the northeastern region than already 
exists and, correspondingly, to an even greater unbalancing of the economies of 
primarily raw materials regions than has existed in the past. 

Such a result would be highly undesirable from the standpoint both of success- 
ful prosecution of the war and of the solution of the multitude of economic prob- 
lems which necessarily will exist in the post-war world. From a strictly military 
point of view, concentration of important manufacturing industry within limited 
areas, especially in areas which are most vulnerable to attack, represents a situa- 
tion which is dangerous for obvious reasons. From the standpoint of economic 
problems which are likely to exist after the war is over, a southeastern region 
which is economically more unbalanced than has heretofore been the case would 
be apt to present an economic problem even more difficult of solution. The same 
would be true in the case of other primarily raw materials regions. 

The program of the Tennessee Valley Authority during the past 8 years has 
been one of coordinated regional development designed to widen the economic 
opportunities of the people of the region. It has sought to accomplish this pur- 
pose by developing the natural resources of the region through application to 
them of the methods of modern technology and science on a democratic basis 
providing for decentralized administration and cooperation to the fullest possible 


extent with existing State, local, and other institutions. The plan has been 
basically to provide for better utilization of the region's resources and thus to- 
permit development of a better balanced economy. The impact of the war has 
created new economic conditions and problems for the southeastern region. It 
has also led to adaptation of the program and activities of the Authority to war- 
time conditions. The remaining portion of this statement will be devoted to a 
summary of the effects of the war on the economy of the southeastern region and 
on the program of the Authority. 

II. Effects of the War and Defense Production Upon the Southeastern 


The possible effects of the war and of defense production upon the southeastern 
region can be the subject, to a large extent, only of generalized conjecture. For 
one thing, the economy of the Southeast is bound up with the economy of the 
country as a whole, and what will be the effects of the war upon the national 
economy no one can now predict with any assurance of accuracy. It is possible, 
however, to summarize in a general way, and without any attempt at profound 
or detailed economic analysis, some of the major problems of the Southeast which 
have resulted from defense production and are discernible at the present time. 


Whatever measure of success the Southeast may have in securing a fuller and 
more balanced development of its resources, and particularly in securing the es- 
tablishment of fabricating and processing industries within its borders, its economy 
will almost certainly continue to rest principally upon an agricultural base. 

The Tennessee Valley area, like the South as a whole, was settled because of 
the many potentialities — particularly agricultural — inherent in its natural en- 
vironment and resources. The first settlers who formed the Watauga Association 
in what is now eastern Tennessee saw in the valley a variety of climatic topographic 
and soil conditions which created great opportunity for productive use of its lands. 
The region also possessed such important advantages as great forest resources, 
substantial mineral deposits, and many other assets sufficient to permit the es- 
tablishment of a diversified, balanced, and stable economic system. 

Nevertheless, social and economic forces led to the wasting and depletion of 
many of the region's most valuable resources instead of to their proper develop- 
ment and use. The prevalence through the years of row-crop farming, accom- 
panied as it was by neglect of cover crops and other soil-conserving measures, had 
particularly disastrous effects. Not only was the fertility of the soil steadily 
depleted, but in addition the soil lost its ability to retain moisture essential to 
crop growth. Excessive losses of water, in turn, produced erosion of the soil 
and added to the extent and destructive character of occasional heavy floods. 

The activities of the Tennessee Valley Authority directed to rebuilding the soil 
and stimulating agriculture have already been described in a statement prepared 
by it for the committee during its inquiry into the interstate migration of destitute 
citizens. (See Hearings Before the Select Committee to Investigate the Interstate 
Migration of Destitute Citizens, House of Representatives, 76th Cong., 3d sess., 
pt. 9, pp. 3798-3827.) These activities have centered around the development 
and production of new types of highly concentrated phosphatic fertilizers, fol- 
lowed by their distribution, with the cooperation of agricultural experiment 
stations, land-grant colleges, and other agencies, on a basis permitting testing 
and demonstration of their effects when used in conjunction with and as a part of 
a system of soil conservation and scientifically planned land use. 

To date, agricultural experiment stations have undertaken more than 38,000 
experiments with newly developed fertilizers produced by the Authority, through 
a sequence of stages ranging through laboratory, field, and farm. And at the 
present time over 27,000 farmers, in the valley States and in other States as well, 
are engaged in demonstrating the effects of these fertilizers on their own farms. 
As a result of such test-demonstrations with Authority-produced phosphates, 
farmers in the Southeast have been making substantial progress in overcoming 
some of the principal difficulties which have beset them. There has been an ex- 
tensive shift from a predominantly row-crop type of farming to one in which greater 
reliance is placed on pastures, meadows, and livestock which form the basis of a 
diversified farm economy. This has led to the delivery of additional meat and 
milk products from the farms, thus raising the nutritional standards of the valley 


Further, the increasing extent to which farmers are growing legumes and other 
cover crops is providing a vegetative cover which protects against erosion and 
excessive loss of water. This is illustrated by the results of recent studies of 
Authority hydraulic engineers who have investigated the effectiveness of vegeta- 
tive cover in holding soil and water. Two watershed areas in the valley were 
studied. One was the Potato Creek watershed, lying in a generally denuded area 
of badly eroded land; and the other was the Turtletown Creek watershed, lying 
in a generally well covered area. It was found that the surface run-off from the 
poorly'protected Potato Creek area was twice that from the fairly well protected 
Turtletown Creek area. The peak rate of flow from the Potato Creek area was 
5 times as great per square mile as that from the Turtletown Creek area when all 
storms were considered, and 10 times as great when the 10 largest storms in a 3-year 
period were considered. 

In all of these ways, the past 8 years have been marked by substantial progress 
in placing the agricultural economy of the Southeast on a sounder and more 
stable basis. The effect of the war and of the defense program may well be — 
and there is no blinking the fact — to place in serious jeopardy the gains which 
have been accomplished. 

Existing and anticipated national requirements have forced the Secretary of 
Agriculture to call upon farmers to produce substantially larger quantities of 
food, particularly livestock products. In seeking to comply with this request 
the farmers of the Southeast are seeking to surmount two great difficulties: 
(1) an increasingly intense shortage of farm labor, and (2) the prospect of a 
shortage of concentrated phosphatic fertilizers. 

1. The farm labor shortage. — Almost overnight, the farm labor problem in the 
Tennessee Valley has changed from one of oversupply to one of overdemand. 
Enormous construction programs are being undertaken in the Tennessee Valley 
area, calling for huge concentrations of labor forces with attendant housing and 
service facilities. In many cases, the construction programs will be followed 
by operating programs which will require even more labor and even more facilities; 
in other cases, the completion of construction programs will be the signal for 
labor to move on or to settle back into their former occupations. Whatever the 
outcome, there are acute problems of adjustment in the communities near the 
projects, and more general but even more difficult problems of adjustment facing 
the region. 

The great increase in the demands of the Authority's own construction program, 
stepped up as it has been due to wartime demands for electric power, exemplifies 
the general situation. The number of hourly employees employed on Authority 
projects in December 1941 was 21,326, representing an increase of approximately 
100 percent over the number employed in December 1940. A large proportion 
of these workers have been recruited from an area within a radius of 50 to 75 miles 
of the various projects, and nearly all of them from within the Tennessee Valley 
area. A special questionnaire returned by 2,962 workers on the Cherokee project 
in the spring of 1941 resulted in the following tabulation: 

Former residence in Tennessee 2, 492 

Former residence in other Tennessee Valley States 297 

Former residence elsewhere 155 

Former residence not specified 18 

While no comparable figures are available for other projects, the figures are 
believed to be typical of all of them. 

The extent of the demand for construction and industrial labor is further 
indicated by the following data with respect to a partial list of emergency projects 
under construction or in operation within the valley area. 1 

Wolf Creek ordnance plant, near Milan, Tenn., employed 9,000 at peak of 

construction and will employ 10,000 in operation. 
Rodstone Ordnance Works (arsenal, ordnance, and storage), near Huntsville, 

Alabama, employing 10,000 to 15,000 at peak of construction, and 6,000 

in operation. About 65 percent of workers were recruited from within 

commuting distance. 
Aluminum Co. of America, Alcoa, Tenn., expected to employ 13,000 by June 

1942, as compared with 5,200 in February 1940. Workers mostly local. 
Camp Forrest, near Tullahoma, Tenn., employed 23,000 in construction at 

peak in June 1941. 

1 Data are based on labor market reports of the Tennessee Unemployment Compensation Division and 
on material contained in the Authority's files. 

60396— 42— pt. 32 6 



Muscle Shoals, Ala., new Tennessee Valley Authority and other projects 

employ between 4,500 and 5, COO workers. 
Volunteer Ordnance Works, near Chattanooga, Tenn., will employ 12,000 

at peak of construction. Majority of workers in operations will be local. 
Vultee Aircraft Corporation, Nashville, Tenn., is expected to employ 7,000 

in full operation. Most of workers will be locally trained, supplemented 

by some influx from other aircraft plants. 
Tennessee Powder Co., near Memphis, Tenn., employing 3,500 in operations. 
Fisher Body Works (Tennessee Division of General Motors), anticipate 

employment of 5,000 workers in operations by January 1943, as compared 

with 1,500 workers in February 1942. 
Camp Tyson, near Paris, Tenn., employing approximately 8,000 on con- 
Smyrna Air Base, near Nashville, Tenn., will employ an estimated 15,000 at 

construction peak. 

For most of these projects, little statistical information is available on sources 
of labor supply. From information on certain areas, however, it seems probable 
that at least one-half of the labor required is being recruited from areas within 
commuting distance of the various projects, and most of the remainder from within 
the valley region. 

In all probability, agricultural workers have constituted the largest single 
source of labor supply for these projects. The drain of agricultural workers to 
construction and industrial jobs is explained in large measure by the intermittent 
character of farm employment, and the fact that until recently the average 
daily wage of farm laborers in the area has been only about $1. "Recently, the 
growing labor shortage has resulted in an increase in farm-labor wages, but the 
limits fixed by farm prices and farm capital — and, indeed, by the capacity of the 
valley's soils themselves — necessarily confine adjustments within a narrow range 
and far below the point where farmers can compete successfully with emergency 
construction and other projects in the labor market. The trend in average farm 
wages and the ratio of farm-labor supply to demand is shown below for a 12-year 
period. The data are for Tennessee only, but are representative of the region 
as a whole : 2 

Day wage 
rates (with- 
out board) 

Ratio of 
labor sup- 
ply to de- 

Day wage 

rates (with- 
out board) 

Ratio of 
labor sup- 
ply to de- 





1938 . 

1932 ... 





1934 _ . 





1936 . . 

The drain on farm labor supply is not wholly caused by employment of farm 
workers in construction and industrial jobs. A further cause is, of course, the 
induction of large numbers of farm laborers into the armed services. 

The problems resulting from this drain are extremely serious, and appear to be 
growing increasingly acute. The shortage was present in some degree last year, 
but relief was afforded by the relatively low rainfall during the crop season, which 
permitted a greater than usual spread of days available for planting, working, and 
harvesting crops. This situation is not expected to recur in 1942, and the farm 
labor shortage will be felt to a much greater extent. 

A few months ago, a questionnaire in the form of a "farm work inquiry" was 
mailed to 7,000 Tennessee farmers by the State office of the Agricultural Market- 
ing Service of the United States Department of Agriculture, as part of a Nation- 
wide fact-finding survey. Nearly all of the returns received contained some 
comment on labor scarcity due to competing industrial, construction, and Govern- 
ment projects. Farmers making returns sometimes expressed doubt as to 
ability to make their crops for the coming season, and some went so far as to pre- 
dict that their farms will lie idle unless the farm labor situation improves. While 

s Material supplied by S. T. Marsh, Tennessee Agricultural Marketing Service, University of Tennessee 
Department of Agriculture. 


the strongest complaints were received from areas in which defense projects are 
located, returns indicated that the problem is present throughout the State. 

2. Shortage of phosphatic fertilizers.- — Equally alarming for southeastern agri- 
culture as the shortage of farm labor is the shortage of phosphatic fertilizers. As 
has already been pointed out, the past impoverishment of agriculture in the region 
was due principally to the prevalence of row crop farming, the effect of which was 
gradually to destroy the fertility of the soil. The planting of row crops was 
accompanied by the application of low-grade mixed fertilizers, the effect of which 
was temporarily to stimulate crop growth but which, since such fertilizers do not 
replace in the soil the essential plant nutrients which cash crops remove from it, 
over a period of years merely added to the depletion of soil fertility, erosion, and 
general wastage of the agricultural resources of the region. 

The program of agricultural reclamation sponsored by the Tennessee Valley 
Authority over the past 8 years has encouraged the widespread planting of cover 
crops, the application to the land of highly concentrated phosphatic fertilizers, 
the effect of which is to restore the nutrients essential to soil fertility, and the 
use of crop rotation and other soil-conserving practices essential to the restora- 
tion and preservation of the land resources of the region. The production and 
distribution of phosphatic fertilizers are essential, of course, to the carrying on of 
this program. In the past, these fertilizers have been made available in several 
ways. Triple superphosphate (containing approximately 48 percent phosphoric 
acid, or P 2 5 ) and calcium metaphosphate (containing approximately 63 percent 
P 2 5 ) produced by the Authority at its Muscle Shoals plant by the electric 
furnace method have been distributed under the test demonstration program in 
the manner described in detail in the statement prepared by the Authority in 
connection with its previous appearance before the committee. Large quantities 
of such fertilizers have also been transferred by the Authority at cost to the 
Agricultural Adjustment Administration, and distributed to farmers by that 
agency, in lieu of cash benefits, in connection with its soil-conservation program. 
In addition, there has been some private commercial production of triple super- 
phosphate, as well as of ordinary superphosphate (15 to 18 percent P2O5), prin- 
cipally by a sulfuric acid process. 

The war production program has resulted in a serious curtailment of the 
production and sale of fertilizer materials. The shortage of electric power 
resulting from the extraordinary requirements of the defense program forced the 
Authority, in 1941, to curtail its phosphate production for a period of several 
months. While its Muscle Shoals plant is again operating at capacity, a sub- 
stantial portion of it is being used to produce elemental phosphorus for war pur- 
poses rather than phosphatic fertilizers. Moreover, the war has made it im- 
possible for Great Britain to obtain phosphatic fertilizers from sources on which 
she formerly depended, and accordingly a substantial portion of such fertilizers 
now produced by the Authority is being shipped to Britain at the present time. 
The Authority's plant capacity is being increased by expansion of existing facilities, 
and a proposal for construction of a new plant at Mobile, Ala., is now pending in 
Congress. But the increasing need for elemental phosphorus in wartime pro- 
duction of chemicals, together with the increasing need for phosphates on the 
part of Great Britain, makes it doubtful whether or to what extent this increased 
plant capacity can be utilized for production of phosphatic fertilizers for distri- 
bution within the valley. 

The war has exerted a similar effect upon commercial phosphate production. 
Such production has been almost exclusively by a sulfuric acid process, and the 
fact that this element is needed in production of war materials has greatly cur- 
tailed the amount available for use in the manufacture of fertilizers. Moreover, 
such phosphate materials as are being commercially produced are going largely 
into the production of low-grade mixed fertilizers, since the sale of such fertilizers 
is more profitable than the sale of concentrated phosphatic fertilizers. The 
shortage of elements necessary in the manufacture of phosphates has been accom- 
panied, however, by a shortage of elements essential to the manufacture of 
nitrates, since these elements, too, are needed in the production of munitions and 
other war materials. Hence the manufacture even of mixed fertilizers, which 
contain varying proportions of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potash, in addition to 
"filler" materials, has been curtailed. 

The dangerous portent of this situation is apparent. Permanently increased 
agricultural productivity in the Southeast requires growth of cover crops and 
application of phosphatic fertilizers containing large quantities of essential plant 
nutrients. Even a temporary production increase, by greater planting of row 
crops, will require application of large quantities of fertilizers, and of course can be 


achieved only at the expense of the fertility of the soil. It seems likely that an 
effort to increase production by a return to the row crop system will be made by 
large numbers of southeastern farmers. The farmers' assigned task of increasing 
their production in the face of shortages both of fertilizers and of labor will, how- 
ever, be an exceedingly difficult one. And the danger that the soils of the south- 
east will be seriously damaged in the process is exceedingly grave. 


Past and present problems with respect to the Tennessee Valley's forest re- 
sources parallel, to a large extent, those existing in connection with its agricultural 
resources. Once the valley possessed 26,000,000 acres of forests. Only one-half 
of that acreage remains in timber, and that has been seriously depleted over the 
years as a result of exhaustive cutting and repeated burning. Two-thirds of the 
present forest area in the valley is in trees smaller than saw-timber size, and even 
before the national defense emergency the remaining saw timber was being cut 
at a rate substantially in excess of the annual growth increment. 

The was production program is resulting in greatly increased consumption of 
the forest resources of the Tennessee Valley area, as well as of other regions. The 
importance of wood in defense production can hardly be exaggerated. Lumber 
is needed for barracks, boats, bridges, cantonments, gun stocks, hangers, housing, 
pontoon planking, shipping containers, and wharves. In plywood form, wood 
goes into the construction of airplanes, air-raid shelters, cantonment interiors, 
prefabricated houses, ship interiors, and truck bodies. When reduced to pulp, 
its primary use is in the form of paper, paper boards, or wood wool, which are 
needed for cartridge wrappers, cartons, insulation materials, and surgical dressings. 

Through distillation, wood furnishes charcoal for gas masks and steel production, 
rosin for shrapnel, turpentine for flame throwers, methanol, acetic acid, acetone, 
mannitol, scribitor, and other chemicals used in modern national defense industries. 
Tannic acid is an important extract product. Wood contains a high proportion 
of alpha-cellulose, which under new methods may be economically extracted for 
direct mitration into explosives, and for the manufacture of synthetic wood fibers, 
such as rayon, artificial wool and cotton for clothing, parachutes, and other tex- 
tiles. New processes of hydrogenation are revealing additional products, par- 
ticularly types of plastics which may be used for various implements, instrument 
panels, and parts of modern mechanized equipment. Through methods of 
hydrolysis, good yields of sugar, glucose, and alcohol are obtained. Cellulose 
acetate manufactured from alpha-cellulose and acetone, is used for photographic 
film, shatter-proof glass, and for the manufacture of some of the moulded articles 
mentioned above. Wood flour is essential in the manufacture of dynamite. 

Plants manufacturing such materials now exist in the Tennessee Valley in con- 
siderable number. A survey completed by the Authority's Forestry Relations 
Department during the past year indicated that there were 2,870 sawmills and 
145 other forest products plants in the valley, which during the calendar year 1940 
processed the equivalent of 1,032,000,000 board feet of timber. 

Sawmills in the Tennessee Vallev produced 734,000,000 board feet of lumber 
in 1938, 789,000,000 in 1939 and 828,000,000 in 1940, thus increasing their pro- 
duction by nearly 12 percent in 2 years. In certain sections of the valley this 
rate of increase has been much greater, and the resulting drain on the remaining 
saw timber supply correspondingly more serious. Recent field observations indi- 
cate that most mills are now operating to capacity. Preliminary figures indicate 
a further increase in production during 1941 of 14.2 percent for the country as a 
whole, and of 17.7 percent for the Tennessee Valley area. 

The extent to which the forests are being used to meet increased defense and 
industrial needs indicates the importance of this resource. At the same time, it 
creates a problem, the seriousness of which becomes evident when present timber 
growth and drain are compared. Preliminary analysis of the Authority's forest 
inventory data indicates that the reserve of timber of saw timber size in the valley 
is in the neighborhood of 10,000,000,000 board feet, or about one-half the amount 
predicted a few vears ago before the survey was made. Roughly, one-fourth 
of this reserve is pine, and pine saw timber is now being cut approximately two 
and one-half times faster than new saw timber is growing. Drain does not exceed 
growth to so great an extent as in the case of hardwoods, but for all saw timber 
it is expected to approach an overcut of at least 70 percent. 

In the case of smaller than saw timber size trees, the problem is less acute. 
When all species and sizes of trees are combined, present drain exceeds growth 
only very slightly, although this situation may be changed by increased consump- 
tion of material of pulpwood and cordwood sizes. A dozen or more new wood 


manufacturing plants have recently begun operations in the valley. The present 
trend toward increased exploitation is well exemplified by a letter to the Authority 
from the Extension Service of Mississippi, one sentence of which reads: 

"Due to market stimulus caused by defense orders for lumber, the farmers are 
stripping their woodlands of all growing stock, and in many cases even of seed 
trees, selling logs as small as 6 inches in diameter and 8 feet long." 

Unlike the situation which exists with respect to agriculture, there is no indica- 
tion that any difficulty will be experienced in increasing the production of wood 
products within the Tennessee Valley area in accordance with wartime demands. 
There is every indication, however, that such production will result in extremely 
serious further depletion of a valuable resource which has already been greatly 
depleted over a period of many years. 


The general effect of the defense production program on the mining industry 
and mineral development in the Southeast has been to bring about an acceleration 
and expansion of existing mining operations, together with increased exploration 
of new and marginal properties. 

The need for minerals in the defense production program has natually resulted 
in an increase in production of most minerals which the region has produced in the 
past. This is true in the case of such major mining industries of the Southeast as 
coal, iron ore, and phosphate, as well as in the case of minor production by small 
mines of such minerals as mica and barite. An exception, of course, is marble, 
the quarrying of which has been greatly curtailed as a result of the defense program. 

As was the case during the first World War, many marginal deposits are being 
opened up for production during a period of widespread demand and higher prices. 
However, the situation in this respect is somewhat more favorable than that which 
existed in 1918, in that better benefication and technical methods are being em- 
ployed, which may result in maintenance of production from some of these deposits 
during the post-war period. 

Investigations are now under way which may lead to important new mineral 
developments within the region. The possibilities include new processes for 
making possible the utilization of common clays in lieu of bauxite in the produc- 
tion of aluminum, use of low-grade ores in the production of manganese, the extrac- 
tion of magnesium from olivine, and increased production of chromite. Research 
is being conducted by the Authority in connection with all these possibilities and 
will be described at a later point in this paper. 


The effect of the national defense program and the war has been to increase 
tremendously the extent of manufacturing activities already being conducted in 
the southeast. This expansion has been particularly great in the case of alu- 
minum. It has also been noteworthy in the case of the chemical, iron and steel, 
paper and pulp, rayon, woodworking, and airplane industries. 

New manufacturing activities begun within the area as a result of the war 
emergency have consisted largely of munitions plants, arsenals, ordnance plants, 
and other similar undertakings. Examples are the arsenal at Huntsville, Ala., 
the Volunteer Ordnance Works at Chattanooga, Tenn., the shell-loading plant at 
Milan, Tenn.; and the smokeless powder plants at Childersburg, Ala., Radford, 
Va., and Millington, Tenn. 

Plants of this character are likely, of course, to shut down as soon as the war is 
over. While the effect of their construction may therefore be to stimulate a 
temporary wartime boom within the area, such plants are unlikely to contribute 
on any permanent basis to the region's economic well-being. 

As has already been pointed out, the area's great economic need is the location 
within its borders of fabricating and processing industries which can continue in 
operation during the post-war era. With a few exceptions, notably the vast ex- 
pansion of the Vultee Airplane Plant at Nashville, Tenn., there has been no move 
to establish within the region wartime fabricating and processing plants which after 
the war can be converted to peacetime uses. Aluminum sheets and plates produced 
by the Aluminum Co. at Alcoa, Tenn., and by the Reynolds Metals Co. at Lister- 
hill, Ala., continue to be transported north for further processing. Manganese 
continues to leave the region as ore for alloying in the manufacture in other locali- 
ties of high-grade steel. The same is true of the region's production of many other 
products. Unless the expansion in the production of raw materials and in the 
manufacturing of products useful solely for war purposes can be accompanied by 


the location within the area of processing and fabricating plants which can be con- 
verted to peacetime use, there will exist possibilities for very serious post-war 
economic dislocations. 


In summary, therefore, there is danger that the impact of the war upon the 
economy of the Southeast may produce very serious results. It seems certain 
that the demands of wartime production will lead to further depletion of the 
region's basic agricultural and forestry resources upon which, particularly if 
there is an economic depression immediately following the war, the region will be 
forced principally to rely during the post-war period. The permanency of the 
present expanded activity in the extractive industries and in the capital-goods 
industries will, of course, depend upon the existence of a heavy demand for the 
products of such industries following the war. There is little possibility of 
permanency in the operations of new plants producing strictly for wartime 
purposes, and there is little present prospect of location within the area on any 
large scale of new fabrication industries which could be converted to peacetime 
production after the war is over. 

III. Impact of the War Emergency on the Program of the Tennessee 
Valley Authority 

a. in general 

The Tennessee Valley Authority was established in 1933 as a regional agency 
for the purpose of dealing with the economic problems of the southeastern region 
as a whole. Its basic program has been directed toward the widening of economic 
opportunities for the people of the region. This program has included activities 
directed to rebuilding soil and stimulating agriculture; activities directed to the 
encouragement of forestry development; activities designed to aid enterprises 
by providing new industrial processes and facts concerning the resources of the 
region and their possible uses; activities in establishing mass consumption pricing 
policies on the sale of electricity; and activities relating to water control in the 
interests of flood control, navigation, and recreation. The nature of these various 
activities and of their respective contributions to the program as a whole was 
described in the paper filed by the Authority with the committee during its study 
of the interstate migration of destitute citizens. 

Today the Authority's activities are directed primarily to the serving of a 
different purpose. That purpose is to assist in every possible way in the winning 
of the war. 

Since this war is a total war, its outcome will necessarily depend in large measure 
upon the application of technical skills in meeting the country's production re- 
quirements. The Authority had already gathered together a large force of 
technicians in carrying out its peacetime program. These assembled technical 
skills it is now utilizing in carrying on its part in the war effort. The Authority's 
chemical engineers who developed new processes for the manufacture of phos- 
phatic fertilizers are now applving their skills in the construction and operations 
of facilities for production of ammonium nitrate, elementary phosphorus, and 
other chemicals needed in the manufacture of munitions. Its engineers who con- 
structed great dams and hydroelectric projects for the purpose of making the 
Tennessee River a navigable waterway, controlling floods and producing cheap 
electricity, are now constructing similar projects designed to produce a vast 
quantity of electricity essential to the production of aluminum, munitions, and 
other products necessary to the war program. Research experts who devoted 
their attention to the development of low-cost furrow seeders, threshers, electric 
heating equipment for sweetpotato curing and storage, rural community refriger- 
ators, and other types of new farm machinery are now redoubling their efforts, 
since development and production of such farm machinery are proving to be 
extremely valuable in obtaining the increased agricultural output which is now 
required. The Authority's specialists in mineralogy, who formerly devoted much 
of their attention to developing new processes and uses for such mineral resources 
of the region as kaolin, sandstone, and marble, are now concentrating their atten- 
tions on problems relating to aluminum, manganese, magnesium, and other min- 
erals vital to the war effort. 



The national defense program and the war have resulted in enormously increased 
demands for electric power. Power is required in the Southeast for new Army 
camps, new powder plants, new shell-loading plants, new arsenals, and other 
similar activities. In addition, greatly increased amounts of power are needed 
by a number of existing industries. The need is particularly urgent in the case 
of the aluminum industry, and the largest aluminum plant in the world is located 
at Alcoa, Tenn., about 20 miles from Knoxville. 

Because power is one of the largest elements entering into the cost of producing 
aluminum, the industry must rely during normal times largely upon secondary 
hydroelectric power, the cheapest type. Secondary power is power which is avail- 
able more than 50 percent of the time, but the supply of which may be interrupted 
from time to time because of drought or for other reasons. During normal periods 
when secondary power was available, the Alcoa plant produced at near capacity, 
and built up large stock piles. During periods when power was cut off by low 
stream flow, production was cut down and orders were filled from the accumulated 
reserve which had been built up. 

The beginning of the national emergency in 1939 found the aluminum industry 
with large accumulated stocks which, under pressure of normal demand, would 
have been ample to carry it over any period of interruption in the supply of 
secondary power. Unprecedented demands resulting from the defense program 
completely changed this picture. Stock piles dwindled rapidly, and it became 
imperative that aluminum plants be kept going at full speed whether secondary 
power was available or not. 

This was the crux of the power problem which faced the Southeast in 1939 and 
1940, since these were years of extremely low water when comparatively little 
secondary power was available. This problem became the problem of Tennessee 
Valley Authority because the Authority's system represented, and still represents, 
the only source of power other than the Aluminum Co. of America's own hydro- 
electric plants which is connected with the Alcoa plant. 

In spite of the abnormally low stream flow during 1939 and 1940, the Authority 
had available at all times more than enough power to meet its contractual obliga- 
tions. Difficulties arose by reason of the fact that it was called upon not only to 
meet its contractual requirements, but also to provide increasingly large amounts 
of power over and above contractual requirements to the Aluminum Co., and in 
lesser degree to other defense industries. During the month of September 1939, 
which was the month when Germany invaded Poland, the Authority made the 
first of these excess power deliveries, amounting to approximately 20,000,000 
kilowatt-hours. In April 1940, when Denmark and Norway were invaded, excess 
deliveries were about 25,000,000 kilowatt-hours. In August 1940, which marked 
the beginning of Germany's air offensive against Britain, thev amounted to about 
50,000,000 kilowatt-hours. Between August 1939 and Januarv 1, 1942, Tennessee 
Valley Authority delivered in all a total of about 2,000,000,000 kilowatt-hours of 
power to defense industries, in addition to all power supplied under regular 

The Authority was able to meet these emergency demands in spite of 2 years of 
unprecedented drought, partly by bringing into operation a number of small 
inefficient generating plants located at various points in the Southeast which 
had not been operated during normal periods, partly by withdrawing water from 
storage which under ordinary circumstances would have been retained for use at 
later periods in the year, and partly by bringing into the area surplus power from 
other systems. Its ability to bring in surplus power from other areas was greatly 
enhanced by the fact that it is primarily a "hydro system possessing great storage 
capacity. Most of the surplus power available from other systems was steam- 
generated energy which, of course, could not be stored and which would have been 
wasted had not the Authority in effect been able to store it. Ordinary demand for 
power falls off at night and over week ends, with the result that in many systems 
some steam capacity is idle and the energy which it might have generated is there- 
fore lost. The Authority was able to take such energy into its system over the 
established interconnections and use it to supply the demand in its area, at the 
same time proportionately reducing generation at its hydro plants. Thus the 
equivalent amount of energy was stored in the form of water in the Tennessee 
Valley Authority reservoirs for use during peak-load hours of the week to help 
meet the power demands of defense industries. 

The increase in the demand for electricity in the Southeast is continuing. 


Location of new defense plants within the distribution areas of municipalities 
and other Tennessee Valley Authority wholesale power distributors has necessi- 
tated an increase in the amount of power furnished to such distributors. 

To meet these mounting national defense and war requirements, Congress has 
authorized and the Authority has rushed to completion a number of new hydro 
projects and substantial additions to existing plants. On July 1, 1940, the total 
installed capacity of the Tennessee Valley Authority system, including both 
hydro and steam plants, was 970,000 kilowatts. By July 1, 1941, this had been 
increased to 1,064,000 kilowatts. Plants now under construction will bring the 
total to approximately 2,824,500 kilowatts by April 1945. A substantial portion 
of the increase will be available by July 1 of this year, when installed capacity 
will total 1,474,000 kilowatts; and a further large increase will be available early 
in 1943. 

In addition to new construction and installation of additional generating 
equipment, the Authority has strengthened the ability of its system to provide 
for national defense needs by additional transmission line construction. 

Provision for these additional power facilities is being made on a rush basis for 
the immediate purpose of permitting full-scale operation of national defense plants 
whose production is essential to the winning of the war. An indirect result will 
be the fact that after the war is over there will be available a great supply of 
power for use by peacetime industries. 


In the course of its operations over the past 8K years, the Authority has as- 
sembled a great amount of detailed information on the geographic, economic, and 
industrial characteristics of the Tennessee Valley area. Its research in these 
fields has enabled it to supply needed information to other defense agencies, to 
manufacturers, and to other interested parties. Data on possible plant locations 
within the valley for the manufacture of explosives, aircraft, and magnesium have 
been furnished to Government authorities and to private industry. Government 
defense agencies have been furnished with information on idle existing plant facili- 
ties. As an example, the Authority, at the request of Office of Production 
Management, made a special study for that agency of idle plant capacity within 
the valley area in the metalworking industries. 

In addition, the Authority's own technicians have been engaged in surveying 
the mineral resources of the area with a view to their use during wartime. One of 
the results of such work has been the development of the process for production of 
aluminum from ordinary high-grade white clays. Large quantities of these clays 
are found in the Southeast and in other sections of the country as well. The 
present source of aluminum is found in bauxite, a mineral which is found in this 
country only in limited quantities and which we obtain largely by imports from 
South America. The importance of a development which can enable us to pro- 
duce aluminum without having to rely upon the importation of bauxite from 
abroad is obvious. The new process has been tested on a semicommercial scale 
at the Authority's chemical engineering laboratory at Muscle Shoals. Informa- 
tion on the new process and on available clay deposits has been furnished to the 
War Production Board. 

Tennessee Valley Authority industrial research has also been carried on in 
connection with manganese. This mineral is essential in the manufacture of steel 
and the demand for it has greatly increased, particularly in view of the fact that 
virtually all of the manganese used in the past has been imported. Scattered 
deposits of low-grade managnese ore occur in Georgia and other Southeastern 
States. Research on improved methods of beneficiation of the Georgia ores has 
recently been completed by the Authority's Commerce Department, in coopera- 
tion with the Georgia Division of Mines, Mining, and Geology. A new process 
has been developed as a result of such research which improves the grade of such 
ores to meet commercial standards, and is expected to make many of the deposits 
available for use. 

The Authority has also carried on investigations in connection with magnesium. 
This metal is used in aircraft construction and in the manufacture of incendiary 
bombs and other defense products, and the demand for it accordingly has been 
and is soaring. A high percentage of magnesium is contained in olivine, a mineral 
found in North Carolina and Georgia. A process to extract magnesium from 
olivine has been developed in the laboratory and tested on a larger scale in a joint 
research project conducted by the Authority and the Georgia State Engineering 
Station. These experiments are being pushed at all possible speed in the Au- 
thority's chemical laboratory at Muscle Shoals. Should the process prove 


practicable, large supplies of magnesium can readily be made available from known 
olivine deposits. 

Chromite is another vital defense mineral in connection with which Tennessee 
Valley Authority has carried on research. Chromite is the mineral from which 
chromium is extracted, and is used in hardening steel for production of armor plate, 
cannon, and other heavy armament. Virtually all of the chromite consumed in 
the United States has been imported, although during World War days some 
chromite was mined in North Carolina and on the Pacific coast. Chromite 
deposits in North Carolina were surveyed by Tennessee Valley Authority geologists 
in 1935 and again in 1940, in cooperation with the North Carolina Division of 
Mineral Resources. The purpose of the surveys was to examine known deposits 
and to locate others in order to facilitate their possible utilization. In the summer 
of 1941 a chromite mine was opened up at a location north of Asheville, N. C., in 
an area examined during the surveys and described in a report which was published 
after their completion. 


Coincident with the need for greatly increased production of electric power 
there is also an immediate, though less well-recognized need, for increased pro- 
duction of phosphates. The need for expansion of manufacturing capacity for 
phosphates springs from three different sources. 

First,, there are expanding normal requirements for phosphatic fertilizers. 
Transportation costs make up a large portion of the total cost of phosphatic 
fertilizers to the farmer. It is for this reason that highly concentrated fertilizers, 
shipment of which involves the cost of transporting a minimum amount of filler 
and other unnecessary ingredients, cost least and can be used most effectively. 
In the Middle West and the Northeast, in such States as Iowa, Wisconsin, 
Illinois, Maine, New Jersey, and others, there is a serious shortage of so-called 
high analysis or concentrated forms of phosphatic fertilizer, and the country 
does not now have sufficient plant capacity to produce such needed concentrates 
along with phosphorus which is needed in the manufacture of implements of war. 
As a result, the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, when distributing 
fertilizers in lieu of cash benefits, has had to substitute low-analysis materials. 
Within the past 6 months the Agricultural Adjustment Administration has not 
been able to secure even enough ordinary superphosphate. The result from the 
standpoint of the farmers and of the Nation's interest in the fertility of its soils 
may be exceedingly grave. 

Second, there are the requirements of war food production. American farmers 
have undertaken the job of producing enough food during 1942 to feed 10,000,000 
persons in England. The result is still further to increase the need of farmers for 
concentrated phosphatic fertilizers. 

Third, there are the requirements of Britain's soils. During peacetime England 
secured phosphates for use on its- soils chiefly from Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco. 
These sources have, of course, been virtually cut off. Commercial sources in the 
United States have already furnished England a considerable quantity of con- 
centrates, but the amount furnished last year was less than half of what was 
wanted. Even the amount actually furnished could not have been supplied if the 
Agricultural Adjustment Administration had not released materials purchased 
from private industry which were originally intended for distribution within the 
United States as a part of the Agricultural Adjustment Administration's domestic 
soil conservation program. England has asked the United States for scores of 
thousands of tons of concentrated phosphate during 1942 and will need more in 
years to come. Shipments of phosphate, to the extent that they can be made, will 
enable Great Britain to increase her own agricultural production, and in this way, 
serve as a substitute for shipment of a relatively much larger quantity of food- 
stuff's. The Tennessee Valley Authority has supplied and will continue to supply 
every ton of concentrated phosphatic material possible, but shipments from all 
sources are certain to fall far short of England's needs. 

The speedy expansion of phosphate and nitrate production facilities is essential 
to the Nation's war effort. Such facilities will serve a dual purpose, however, in 
that they will be equally necessary during the post-war period. When peace 
comes the continuing problem of the Nation's soils will still be with us. Hun- 
dreds of thousands of acres of land have, in the past, been rendered unfit for cul- 
tivation because of the draining of their phosphorus content. Wartime needs 
will place a stih greater strain upon our soils. The need for application of increased 


quantities of phosphate to sustain the soil will be a major problem after the war is 
over for generations to come, and one the solution of which is basic to the welfare 
of the Nation. It is certain, therefore, that phosphate producing facilities pro- 
vided during the war will be needed for peace-time use. 


r ~ 1. Navigation. — Under the terms of the Tennessee Valley Authority Act, the 
Tennessee Valley Authority is directed to construct such dams as will provide 
a 9-foot navigable channel from the mouth of the Tennessee River to Knoxville. 
This channel has been only partially completed. Nevertheless, as a result even 
of partial completion of the channel traffic increased from approximately 18,000,- 
000 ton miles in 1932 to about 138,400,000 ton miles in 1941. This traffic con- 
sisted principally of petroleum products, forest products, grain, sand and gravel, 
and miscellaneous commodities. 

The effect of the war has been greatly to curtail shipments of such items as 
automobiles, trucks, and tires. For a time there was also a temporary slowing 
up in shipments of gasoline and oil because of diversion of boats to the Ohio River. 
Much new traffic, however, has been added. Coal is beginning to move for the 
Tennessee Valley Authority's own use at the Sheffield steam generating plant, 
and docks are being provided for river movements of coal, salt, and other mate- 
rials to the chemical warfare arsenal at Huntsville, Ala. The use of the Tennessee 
and other inland waterways for transportation of defense materials is, of course, 
beneficial to the war effort to the extent that it relieves the strain on the country's 
railroads and on coastwise shipping. Increased use of the inland waterways for 
these purposes has been urged recently by President Roosevelt in a letter dated 
March 25, 1942, addressed to the chairman of the House Committee on Rivers 
and Harbors, and by Mr. Joseph B. Eastman, of the Office of Defense Trans- 

2. Defense housing. — The Authority was requested by the Defense Housing 
Coordinator to undertake studies of defense housing needs, locations, and sites 
at points throughout the Tennessee Valley area. Investigations, studies, and 
reports have been made accordingly. The Authority is continuing to exercise 
similar functions on request of the National Housing Agency. In addition to 
the rendition of such studies and reports, the Authority, as agent of the Federal 
Works Administrator under the Lanham Act, has selected sites, purchased and 
surveyed land, afforded architectural service, and constructed or let contracts 
for the construction of defense housing. In the case of approximately 150 houses 
constructed in the Muscle Shoals area, the Authority proceeded with actual con- 
struction on force account. In other cases, it has let contracts for construction 
by private builders. 

8. Forestry. — At the request of the War Production Board and the Office of 
Price Administration, the Authority's Forestry Relations Department has been 
and is furnishing these agencies with data concerning the types and locations of 
plants and industries in the valley area engaged in the manufacture of forest 
products. It has also participated in the making of surveys undertaken by or 
on request of these agencies in connection with the ship timber, container, and 
tannic acid industries. The Authority has also furnished technical data necessary 
to the location within the area of wood using and manufacturing plants which 
have war orders. 

4. Training Programs. — As one of the largest single employers of labor in the 
Southeast, the Authority has a definite interest in the development of a labor 
supply possessing skills requisite to its needs. By agreement with representa- 
tives of organized labor, the Authority carries on an apprentice training program. 
It also carries on a number of other training programs which are designed to 
provide an opportunity for its employees to develop to an optimal degree their 
individual skills and potentialities. During recent months the loss of a large 
number of personnel to the armed service and the need for training new personnel 
to take their places has given these training programs an added significance. 

The apprenticeship programs were inaugurated jointly by the Tennessee Valley 
Trades and Labor Council, an organization composed of representatives of the 
various crafts participating in Tennessee Valley Authority work, and the Tennessee 
Valley Authority management in 1937. The system of apprenticeship training 
provides for approximately 4 years of job rotation and related class work. To 
date 229 apprentices have completed their training in 10 different crafts. Many 
of them are employed by the Authority as foremen and skilled journeymen, while 
others are employed in private industry in the southeastern area. Approximately 


300 apprentices are now in process of training. In addition, a program has been 
developed whereby the versatility of journeymen craftsmen is increased through 
their assignment to specific phases of Authority work which are intended to 
increase their skills. 

Through cooperation between labor and management, a formal training pro- 
gram for operating positions in the Authority's hydro and steam generating plants, 
including job rotation and related study, has been instituted. This program is 
intended to develop from the reservoir of untrained employees the highly skilled 
operators who are essential to operation of these plants. The training program is 
from 4 to 6 years in length. To date about 75 employees have completed it 
and 252 more are in various stages of training. 

An operating training program has also been initiated to provide necessary 
trained personnel for operation of the chemical plants at Muscle Shoals. A 
progressive course of training has been developed under which unskilled laborers 
are recruited and placed in training to produce the necessary skilled men required 
to operate the plants. At the present time, some 500 persons are now receiving 
training under this program. 

A number of other miscellaneous training programs of a less formal character 
have also been developed. These include training programs for rodmen, inspectors 
of construction, medical aides, public safety officers, clerks, and typists, and occu- 
pants of supervisory and skilled positions in reservoir clearance work. There are 
also a number of apprentices in training for positions in the professional and 
managerial field. About 1,500 employees are now engaged in training on the job 
through related study for more responsible work. A majority of these persons 
have been recruited from applicants and employees having little specialized 
training, but who have been revealed by examinations and other personnel methods 
to possess potentialities for the assumption of more responsible work. Almost 
without exception such persons have been recruited from the area in which the 
Authority's operations are conducted. 


Today the farms, the factories, and the industries of the Southeast, in common 
with those of other regions of the country, are putting forth even' effort to achieve 
a single goal — the winning of the war. The Tennessee Valley Authority is 
participating in this effort to the limits of its abilities, by rushing to completion 
great hydroelectric projects designed to produce the vastly increased amounts of 
power necessary to run the region's aluminum plants and other war industries; by 
enlarging its existing chemical plants and constructing new ones to help provide 
phosphates, nitrates, and other needed chemicals; and by utilizing in other ways 
designed to promote the war effort the technical skills which it had assembled for 
peacetime purposes. What will be the specific economic problems which will exist 
after the war is over in the southeastern region and in other areas of the country, no 
man can now foretell. There is virtually no question, however, but that very 
grave economic problems will exist. It seems likely that they will, to a large 
degree, center, in the case of the Southeast, upon the necessity of rebuilding 
depleted agricultural and forest resources, and upon securing a better balanced 
economic development by building up fabricating and processing industries within 
the region. The Authority's power facilities, chemical plants, and technically 
trained personnel will be available to participate in such a program. 


Mr. Ferris. That represented the thinking and data supplied by a 
number of departments in the Tennessee Valley Authority, and I am 
glad some of the subjects you questioned me about fall so closely within 
the fields of my own interest. So if the committee will permit me, I 
shall not cover all the subject matter in that statement, but rather 
the parts I am more familiar with. 


As to the program on rebuilding the soil, if you will permit me, I 
will use some notes I have on that subject. I would like to say that 
from the beginning the Authority has devoted a major portion of its 


efforts to the solution of agricultural soil fertility, with greatest empha- 
sis on production of new, highly concentrated forms of phosphatic 
fertilizers, and from the beginning we have been turning out these 
phosphatic fertilizers. They have been used to energize a farm 
management program of improved farm land use that has been carried 
out by a large number of farms. The effect of the war program, in 
my opinion, has been to increase the seriousness of the soil fertility 
problem, and even to threaten temporarily the effects of some of the 
Tennessee Valley Authority's work during the last 8 years. The 
reasons for that are plain. Mr. Randolph, the previous witness, 
described several of the reasons better than I could. The first thing 
is that the farmer has been called upon to increase food production. 
The goals for food production will make it hard for the farmer to keep 
from depleting his soils faster than he can build them up. In order 
to win the war, as we see it, we are going to have to feed our own 
population and send thousands of tons of food overseas, because we 
will have to help feed hundreds of millions of people in England, 
Russia, and many other countries. Secretary Wickard has called on 
the 7 States in this area, in 1942, to produce 126,000,000 gallons of 

Mr. Sparkman. Is that the increase only? 

Mr. Ferris. Yes, sir; for 1942 for the 7 States in the Tennessee 
Valley. I am just giving typical figures; 860,000 acres of grains. 
And, as Mr. Randolph has indicated, these increases are being de- 
manded of the farmers when there is a growing labor problem, caused 
first by the migration of the farm boys and farm labor to the armed 
services, and, second, to the construction of war projects and war 
industrial plants, where higher wages prevail. The average day wage 
for farm labor in Tennessee is $1.37, without board. A shortage of 
labor on the farm, as I understand it, means that a farmer omits some 
laborious tasks, such as terracing, but which are necessary in restoring 
fertility on depleted soil and in caring for soil generally. The farmers 
are called on for new crops and more livestock. In this area new 
crops and livestock are needed to get away from continuous cultiva- 
tion of row crops. And getting new crops planned, planted, and 
harvested requires additional labor. Livestock takes more labor than 
row crops and requires labor the year 'round. If a farmer is short of 
labor his progress in planting, raising, and harvesting new crops will 
be slow. The farmers don't have as much time to attend demon- 
stration meetings. County agents don't have as many tires as they 
did, and don't have as much time to get around on educational work 


This call for increased food production comes when there is also a 
growing fertilizer shortage in nitrates and particularly phosphates. 
Even with the Tennessee Valley Authority's increased manufacturing 
plant capacity, there is less available. The production of elemental 
phosphorus and nitrates for war purposes is taking up a good portion. 
Furthermore, a portion of the phosphatic fertilizer we are turning out 
is being shipped to Great Britain. Private industry, using almost 
exclusively the sulfuric-acid process, will produce less fertilizer as the 
shortage of acid becomes more acute. The net result of this situation 
is that the soil that is called upon to produce more will get less fer- 
tilizer, with the prospect of reduced fertility of the land at a time 


when we think the agriculture of the Southeast is going to have to 
support more people than it does now. After the war, we believe that 
many people will come back to the farms from the industrial cities. 

The activities of the Tennessee Valley Authority, as I described 
them to this committee some months ago, we believe will have some 
very important effects on that situation during the war period and 
besides will keep up with the pressure that is being put on the soils 
which I have described. 

This program can be intensified so as to constitute a very important 
contribution to the solution of the post-war agricultural difficulties. 
Now, what changes in this program have come about? First, let me 
say that there are several things which have affected the soil program 
of the Tennessee Valley Authority. Of course, the increased use of 
electricity on the farm is one of the very important ones. You gentle- 
men undoubtedly realize in these 7 States there were in 1941 about 8 
times as many farms that have electricity as in 1930, 405,000 farms as 
against 54,000 in 1930. The dairy farms among them — and they are 
highly specialized farms — find a very important relief from labor 
shortage in electricity, and it isn't just a luxury. A farmer with 60 
cows lost 2 men to a construction camp awhile ago. He got a milking 
machine and was able to carry on without that labor. On a livestock 
farm electric pumps pumping water for livestock release 2 man-hours 
a day. Those illustrations serve to show that electricity is getting the 
job done. After the war the Tennessee Valley Authority will have 
increased facilities for production of fertilizer to help catch up some 
of the loss to the soil that will inevitably be the case. It should be 
remembered that the availability of this fertilizer to the farmers can 
be a powerful means of bringing about improvements in agriculture 
and soil conservation. During the past 8 years this program, in 
which the fertilizers have been so used, has gone on until it now has 
an important influence on at least 100,000 farmers, with some 20,000 
demonstration farms that are making important progress toward 
improved farming practices and soil conservation, using these highly 
concentrated fertilizers. That involves 3,000,000 acres of land, prob- 
ably one-fifth of our farm land in the Tennessee Valley. That pro- 
gram, which seems so important in helping win the war and after the 
war, is not confined to the Tennessee Valley. There are demonstra- 
tion farms using this fertilizer in 30 States, making the grand total 
some 37,000. The Tennessee Valley Authority is proud that this 
contribution toward soil conservation is a national one, and not 
entirely regional. 

As to the forestry program, if the committee will bear with me, I 
would suggest it be taken care of by reference to the written record. 
I am not prepared to discuss the forestry program. I had the feeling 
that the committee might be interested in the immediate effects of 
migration of workers in industry and in the whole industrial picture of 
the valley, and if it will be permitted, I will refer to that subject. 

Mr. Sparkman. Go right ahead. 


Mr. Ferris. The industrial situation in the Southeast and in the 
Tennessee Valley in particular is of course the one that most immedi- 
ately reflects the migration problem, and is, 1 presume, the one of 


greatest interest to the committee. As background for it, I want to 
read about 12 lines from Fortune magazine, November 1938, about 
the nature of the industrial economy of our region, which I shall read 
into the record. 

The industrial picture of the South presents a pattern that seems surprisingly- 
similar to the South's agricultural pattern of cotton and tobacco. It is relatively 
undiversified and largely dependent on special resources and special advantages. 
Even when prosperous * * * the situation is still dangerously vulnerable. 
It is a cash crop industrial system and it tends to keep the South colonial. * * * 
If it maintained its present pattern, it would always be a tributary, rather than a 
principal industrial area. 

However, prior to this war, there has been a substantial increase in 
industrial activities. Between 1933 and the end of 1940 a rough check 
will indicate 190 new concerns employing 120,000 people were estab- 
lished in the Tennessee Valley. About half of those workers were 
employed in 112 of those establishments, making more than 60 differ- 
ent kinds of products. Since 1935 we have a new electrolysis plant 
that employs 2,500 people. Existing chemical industries have ex- 
panded notably. Twelve new paper mills have been established in the 
South since 1935. At this point, I would like to emphasize the over-all 
nature of this industrial expansion program, rather than merely re- 
count figures. A few large enterprises are employing a great number 
of workers and these workers are drawn almost entirely from the South- 
east. The Cherokee Dam project of the Tennessee Valley Authority 
will illustrate it. Eighty-five percent of the 2,962 workers stated that 
their former residences were in Tennessee. About 94 percent had pre- 
viously lived in one of the seven Tennessee Valley States. Less than 6 
percent had come from other parts of the country. And in that 6 
percent were people that had come from Arkansas, Louisiana, Flor- 
ida, Texas, and South Carolina. This is very significant, because of 
the large and increasing number of people employed by the Tennessee 
Valley Authority, less than 14,000 in 1940, have increased to over 
35,000 under our war program at present. Now, general information 
on other large projects employing large amounts of labor, including 
private industry, indicates that the most of the workers come from 
within the valley region. The Huntsville arsenal and the ordnance 
plant, which is near Huntsville, have, I understand, employed some 
13,000 to 14,000 men and will employ some 8,000 in operation, accord- 
ing to published statements. The Aluminum Co. of America, at 
Alcoa, Term., and the Reynolds Metal Co., near Florence, Ala., indi- 
cate the same story. 

Mr. Sparkman. I was through one of those aluminum plants at 
Listerhill, Ala. It was a rolling mill. They are working now some 
2,500 people. They told me that they had imported about 15 people 
to get started and the rest had been recruited from that area. I was 
over at the electro-metallurgical plant, which has expanded capacity 
500 percent in the last year and a half. The manager told me of 
the 350 people that worked there, they brought 6 people down 
here to start that, and the others had been recruited and trained 


Mr. Ferris. It is another very interesting example of the fact that 
labor available in this area can be trained easily to the most exacting 
performance. A plant making an extremely difficult product came 


here and was hesitating to locate here to make that product— which 
I shouldn't mention in the record, as it is a war product — and it was 
afraid that it couldn't be made with local labor. But the head of 
the company told us that he had no difficulty in getting labor that 
was perfectly competent to do the work. 


Now the result of these big employment projects is, of course, an 
atmosphere of prosperity. A lot of jobs are available and so we find 
a very general feeling of economic prosperity. And although they 
might not be immediately apparent, there are some features that are 
far from favorable. I have already referred to the difficulties in 
agriculture and soil fertility. Turning again to the industrial picture 
and the effect of the T. V. A.'s program upon it, the question immedi- 
ately arises, how is the war affecting the industries here and how are 
these industries likely to be affected by the war program. 

First, as to the war. During the war, contracts for the construction 
of new war production plants in the Southeastern States — I am count- 
ing the 10 States, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, 
Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Vir- 
ginia — were running about 11 percent of the national total. Those 
same States produced about 11 percent of the Nation's industrial 
goods in 1939. As far as construction is concerned in the Southeast, 
it is participating fully in the national program. However, much of 
this construction on war projects, like air training schools and fields 
and Army camps, and so on, will have little long-time effect on the 
underlying economy of the region. Much of the work was in building 
arsenals and other plants that are unlikely to be converted to peace- 
time use. They do have an effect on building up a body of industrial 
manpower. On the other hand, there has been comparatively little 
participation of southeastern industry in war production. I shall 
later give my impression of the reasons for this situation. Reliable 
figures are not available, but there are some signposts that indicate 
this is true. In connection with airplane manufacture, the figures 
through February 1942 show one-half of 1 percent of the contracts 
for making airplanes and airplane parts were in the Southeastern 
States, although those States furnish 11 percent of the total industrial 
production. Airplanes involve highly specialized and extremely 
difficult manufacturing problems, and are perhaps not a fair test. 
But other figures seem to support it. Only 5 percent of the so-called 
supply contracts through February of 1942 have been placed in the 


Mr. Sparkman. As a matter of fact, isn't Vultee, at Nashville, Tenn., 
about the only airplane plant in this area? 

Mr. Ferris. It is. 

Mr. Sparkman. The Government is building the Martin bomber 
plant at Marietta, Ga. And I believe there will be a plant at Mem- 
phis. Isn't it just a matter of breaking the ice? 

Mr. Ferris. Unfortunately, Mr. Congressman, I think it is more 
than that. I think, as you say, there is going to be a considerable in- 
crease in this airplane manufacture, but for reasons I want to expound 


a little later on, I don't think it will go to anything approach ; ' the 
section's general participation in industry, which is 11 percent. Of 
course, airplane production has been more or less localized in certain 
parts of the United States. I presume there are particular reasons 
for that. Dr. Galbraith was rather discouraged about any future in 
aviation development in the Southeast — that is, for the manufacture 
of airplanes — but his principal reason was that it was too far removed 
from the machine-tool industry and that until that developed down 
here, we couldn't hope to do much airplane manufacturing. 

The Chairman. Where is the machine-tool industry principally? 

Mr. Ferris. Detroit, Cincinnati, New York, and New England. 

The Chairman. The expansion of existing plants was the real rea- 
son, I think. 

Mr. Ferris. The interesting thing is the effect on the Southeast. 
The expansion of airplane manufacture; tank manufacture, and the 
manufacture of other articles of that nature and character is going 
on where that type of industry is already located, which means that 
the plants that are susceptible of conversion to peacetime uses are 
going to be largely somewhere else. The Army camps and arsenals 
in the South, which could be quickly built here, are for the present 
doing a fine job of employing labor, but they are almost certain to 
be unconvertible to peacetime uses later. 

The Chairman. Has labor migrated much from the South to 

Mr. Ferris. So far, our figures don't indicate it has been very 
serious, but it is bound to become serious, we think, because labor 
has to have jobs. If the plants in this section in which skilled laborers 
have been working can't get raw materials, the labor is bound to be 
unemployed very soon. They can't get raw materials unless they get 
war contracts. Therefore, my argument is that the present percentage 
of the South's participation in the national war industry will not keep 
its skilled labor from migrating out of the South. It has done so to a 
considerable degree, but so far it has not been a hegira. As to the 
reasons for this situation I have some ideas. I don't know whether 
the committee would like to have me give them. 

Mr. Sparkman. We would be glad to have them. 


Mr. Ferris. I think we must start from the fact that most, though 
by no means all, of the goods needed by the Army and Navy and 
Maritime Commission are comparatively difficult to manufacture. 
The South makes some goods of this class that are difficult to manu- 
facture, it is true. But it constitutes a very small part of the total. 
However, on the optimistic side, many people do not realize some of 
the things made in the Tennessee Valley — dive bombers, shells, shell 
castings, ships, barges, oils, plasties. At one extreme you will find 
the glassware and the fine metal parts of the hypodermic needle 
made by the Eisele Co. of Nashville; at the other extreme you will 
find in the plant of a Tennessee Valley company a 6,000-ton bending 
press for high-pressure boiler drums. You will find tough alloy steels 
being machined into armament products on highly complicated ma- 
chinery. It is not necessary to tell you that thousands of skilled 


woi "B in one plant of the valley are turning out more aluminum 
than 1 a r ny other plant in the United State?. 

The Chairman. Are you speaking of the region as a whole? 

Mr. Ferris. I had reference to the Tennessee Valley States. I 
have alternated between speaking of the Tennessee Valley and the 

Mr. Sparkman. The Southeast includes 10 States and the Tennessee 
Valley includes 7? 

Mr. Ferris. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Will you name them? 

Mr. Ferr <s. Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Ala- 
bama Mississippi, Tennessee; they are the Tennessee Valley States. 

The Chairman. Name the other three that are not? 

Mr, Ferris. Florida, South Carolina, Louisiana. 


Now to illustrate the lack in this area of the type of manufacturing 
that is easily capable of participating in the war production. The 
1939 census for the Southeast shows no production of ammunition, 
firearms, gasoline engines, laundry machines, sewing machines, trac- 
tors. Only 4 percent of the Nation's agricultural machinery was made 
in the Southeast, and less than 1 percent of the machine tools. These 
things and things of the same character are just the kind of things that 
are made in plants most easily converted to war orders. To convert 
plants to war work is no easy matter. This is one of the reasons I 
think that employment on actual war production in the Tennessee 
Valley and Southeast has been so meager. Afany small plants do not 
have staff's large enough to permit sending men to Washington and 
to large manufacturing companies in order to get war orders. In 
many of the Southeastern plants extensive modification of machinery 
and new machines would be needed. In other cases labor would have 
to be retrained to higher accuracy on new work, sufficient to meet the 
standards of inspection for the final product. In making parts of 
tanks or airplanes, inspectors from the large plant making the entire 
airplane or tank must travel a thousand miles and visit the small shop 
that is making a small part of the whole to see if it meets the require- 
ments, and if not to reject it. 

availability of plants 

Another reason for the small participation in the manufacture of war 
production may be some lack of aggressiveness on the part of industrial 
management in the South, hi face of the staggering problem of plant 
conversion for war production. The United States will spend 
$36,000,000,000 hi armament. There is no time to build new factories 
for all of this, but most of it must come from factories already built. 
Very few in the past have been making war products. To illustrate 
this, the T. V. A. at the request of the old Office of Production Manage- 
ment visited 115 metal-working factories in the Tennessee Valley 
and 47 foundries. The managements of these plants were inter- 
viewed. About half of them were working one shift. One-third 

60396— 42— pt. 32- 


of them could at that time obtain sufficient labor to work at least 
another shift. In these 162 plants there were more than 3,000 ma- 
chine tools. As you know, machine tools constitute one of the most 
critical bottlenecks of the war effort, and it is impossible to get enough 
new ones built. These tools were working, therefore, one-third or one- 
half of the time they might have worked. So, in spite of the difficulties, 
the conversion of manufacturing plants of the Southeast to war pro- 
duction is an absolute necessity if the region is to make the shift into 
high-grade manufacturing during the war. And only if tbis shift is 
made now, when these orders are available and before the skilled labor 
has been lost to other areas, will the industry of the Southeast have 
learned to participate in the type of manufacturing which, after the 
war, will be convertible most easily to peacetime production. In 
other words, now is the time for management to acquire the know- 
how and now is the time to build up a large body of skilled labor, 
experienced in high-grade manufacturing. 

Mr. Sparkman. Don't you think the war effort is doing that very 

Mr. Ferris. Yes, sir; up to the extent I have indicated. But the 
Southeast is not making its pro rata share of the $36,000,000,000 of 
war production in its manufacturing plants. This, it seems to me, is 
a challenge to industrial management of the Southeast. If a manu- 
facturer can assure the War Production Board or the Navy that he 
can deliver a forged turbine shaft, even though he happens to be in an 
already overcrowded, industrialized area, the order must of course go 
to that area — the W. P. B. can do nothing about it — unless some 
manufacturer in one of the underindustrialized areas like the South- 
east can and will undertake to produce the forged turbine shaft and 
will proceed to prove he can do so within the time limits. 

As I indicated earlier the new industries that are coming within the 
area as a result of the war program have consisted primarily of arsenal, 
shell-loading, smokeless powder plants, and others whose operation 
will almost certainly come to complete cessation after the war. Very 
conspicuous among the T. V. A.'s new power customers are electro- 
metallurgical plants which use enormous amounts of electric power, 
but a small amount of labor, extracting ferro-silicon and aluminum. 
In general, such manufacturing seems likely to reduce its operations 
very substantially after the war. Most of the fabrication of the raw 
materials of this area will be done elsewhere, and fabrication, of course, 
employs a larger amount of labor. This entire situation merely re- 
flects an intensification of the tendency of industry to grow where it 
already is. That is what happened in the First World War, and it 
wasn't until 1927 that the percentage of the Nation's manufacturing 
which took place in the Southeastern States again reached its prewar 
levels. Industry in the Northeast and other industrialized sections 
tends to expand, particularly in wartime, even though such areas maybe 
overindustrialized. This expansion in already industrialized areas 
takes place, we find, even though the labor isn't there and even when 
materials cannot be obtained to take care of housing. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you think the question of housing might even 
be affected by the transportation of workers? 

Mr. Ferris. This question of housing is becoming very critical due 
to shortage of materials — of plumbing and hardware. It should be 
noted that workers who live in the Southeast who go to the Middle 


West or Northeast had houses when they lived in this area, but they 
may need new houses built for them when they crowd in already 
overcrowded areas. The present situation is full of danger, it seems 
to me, to the economy of the Southeast for reasons which are obvious 
from the facts I have given. 

The manufacturing industries in this area will not be in as good 
position to convert to peace-time production as in other areas. 
Hence a large proportion of workers will be forced by necessity to 
either return to the overburdened farm lands of the Southeast or 
remain in the over-crowded industrial areas of the Northeast and 
Middle West. Already a considerable number of skilled workers, 
which the Southeast will sorely need as a basis for industrial develop- 
ment after the war, are contributing to the building of permanent 
industries in other sections. However, this proportion is far less than 
it was in the twenties, as I have indicated earlier. 


Now as to the effect of the T. V. A. activities on these underlying 
problems which I have taken the liberty of outlining. We think right 
now during the war our organization is assisting to an immeasurable 
degree in solving them. It has given a general stimulus to industry 
all along the line. That is true not only in the industries of the 
Southeast but hi industries elsewhere. 

Electrical appliances which have been sold in huge quantities in the 
Southeast are made 97 percent in other areas, so that the employment 
that went into the making of these electrical appliances was stimu-" 
lated. One of the aspects of the Tennessee Valley Authority program 
which is perhaps helping and will increasingly help after the war is 
the training of workers. We have trained, as a result of this huge 
construction program, very large numbers of Southern workers who 
are now disciplined and have acquired many skills in different degrees, 
and the training of that body of labor after the war will be a mitigating 
factor, at least, in the situation. 

As to power supply — we, have a large and assured power supply to 
furnish the basis for industrial development generally, and it is a 
practical certainty it will furnish the basis for continuing electro- 
metallurgical manufacturing. And, while a large proportion of the 
products of these large power-using industries are and will continue 
to be shipped elsewhere for fabrication, there is no question but that 
the existence of industries making raw materials does encourage the 
development of fabricating. For instance, the aluminum company at 
Listerhill now also rolls aluminum sheets, which does require the 
employment of a large amount of labor, and we also see it at the steel 
plants in Birmingham, which no longer make only pig iron. Fabri- 
cating is undoubtedly stimulated by the presence of raw material in 

As to the extent of the power program — you might want in the 
record the fact that the Authority's power svstem consisted at tic 
middle of 1940 of 938,000 installed kilowatts of capacity. This figure 
has since increased to 1,291,500 kilowatts, some 38 percent higher 
than at the time of the fall of France. Now we are engaged in an even 
more accelerated construction program, and when the new hydro and 
steam plants we are now constructing are completed, we will more than 
double the capacity we had at the middle of 1940. 



Now a second line of activity to which Congressman Sparkman re- 
ferred was the encouraging of new business enterprises by uncovering 
industrial opportunities based on the unused raw materials of the 
region. This is accomplished in our program by industrial research, 
which we feel to be one of the essentials for the industrial develop- 
ments of the future. Industrial research is helping to win the war 
and also to lay the basis for new industries. Industry these days comes 
out of the laboratories. And the industrial development of the North- 
east has supported a vast program of industrial research, which in 
turn has furnished the basis for many industries in that area — radios, 
automobiles, stainless steel— almost every kind of manufactured 
product you can name. We in the South need much more of it along 
with other things, such as industrial "know how" and more skilled 
labor. If more industrial research had been undertaken years ago, the 
Tennessee Valley States would be in better position now to shift to the 
manufacture of some of the things which are in demand during the 
war. The Tennessee Valley Authority's industrial research program 
should help to do here what has been accomplished already elsewhere. 
Examples of some of the work done along these lines which may help 
win the war include the development of a process for improving the 
quality of low-grade manganese ores in Georgia so it can qualify under 
the purchasing requirements of the Metals Reserve Company and the 
steel corporations that use it. Private companies are getting ready 
to put it into actual production. The Authority has been working 
for 8 years to make kaolin-type clay available for the production of 


A final contribution of the Authority is the enlargement of economic 
opportunity which lies in the development of the river channel, which 
is perhaps the most modern in the world, and I think it is going to 
have a tremendous effect in the development of the Southeast, both 
during and after the war. Even now, 3 years before the river channel 
is complete, important shipments are assisting in our war efforts, 
shipments of pig iron, soda ash, coal, wheat, and gasoline. The great 
importance of this is indicated by the Office of Defense Transporta- 
tion's order forbidding use of tank cars for gasoline shipments of 
under 100 miles without special permission, thus encouraging use of 
navigable waterways and local truck connections. There can be no 
doubt that river transportation is now needed to the utmost. It 
seems highly probable that increased use will be made during the war 
of the system of inland waterways, both because of the economy of 
water shipment and particularly because it will relieve pressure on 
railroads and trucks. 

Incidentally, this isn't a matter of hope for the future, but an 
actuality of the present. In 1941, traffic on the Tennessee River had 
reached the extent of 107,000,000 ton-miles. After the war the com- 
mercial development of the Tennessee Valley region is certain to be 
most favorably affected by navigation on the Tennessee River and its 
connection with 5,700 miles of inland waterways. Low-cost water 
transportation, wherever it has existed, has been a great stimulus to 


business development. Most of America's largest cities are served 
by low-cost water transportation. 

I think an illustration of that is the fact that the fringe counties 
around the outside of the United States and along the Great Lakes — I 
believe there are 324 of them — have only 9 percent of the area of the 
country but in 1930 had more than 36 percent of the population, and 
over half the income from manufacturing is located there. I don't 
think anyone can say low-cost transportation has not been an im- 
portant stimulus to commercial development. 

The Tennessee Valley Authority's activities, while they are now 
primarily directed toward winning the war, should be of definite 
value in helping the Southeastern region solve its post-war problems. 
Though for the first 7 years of its history its organization and activities 
were shaped mostly for peacetime purposes, it has turned out, I 
think that the methods used, which were devised for peacetime pur- 
poses, have been easily redirected to helping win the war. Certainly 
it will be found, I think, that the Tennessee Valley Authority will 
have no difficulty in adapting its plans to a third situation and 
problems, those of the post-war period. 

I do not wish to minimize the seriousness of the economic problems 
which will undoubtedly be produced by the events which have been 
described. These events have been intensified by the war, and they 
deeply affect both the present and future of industry. Neither do I 
wish to imply that the efforts of the Tennessee Valley Authority will 
automatically provide a solution to the problems created. They are 
serious, and unless some of the present trends are reversed, heroic 
measures will be necessary to solve them after the war. 

I regret I have not felt myself competent to comment on all five 
subjects which Congressman Sparkman noted at the beginning of my 
testimony. I think I explained the reason. The written statement 
which was filed covers the material of interest to a number of the 
departments of the Authority, and I have restricted myself to the 
matters that are closest to my own field of interest. 

Mr. Arnold. I think Mr. Ferris covered all the inquiry very 

The Chairman. I would like to say that it was a very valuable 
contribution. If you have anything further, we will have the record 
open for 10 days. We appreciate your appearing before us. Our 
hearings will be resumed tomorrow morning. 


FRIDAY, MAY 8, 1942 

morning session 

House of Representatives, 
Select Committee Investigating 

National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 
The committee met at 10 a. m., May 8, 1942, in the Post Office 
Building, Huntsville, Ala., Hon. John H. Tolan, chairman of the 
committee, presiding. 

Present: Representatives John H. Tolan, of California; Laurence F. 
Arnold, of Illinois; John J. Sparkman, of Alabama. 

Also present: John W. Abbott, chief field investigator; Jack B. 
Burke, field investigator; Francis X. Riley, field investigator; and 
Ruth B. Abrams, field secretary. 1 

The Chairman. The committee will please come to order. Mr. E. 
S. Morgan will be our first witness. 


Mr. Arnold. You are regional director of Farm Security Adminis- 

Mr. Morgan. Yes. sir; for region 5, comprising the States of South 
Carolina, Florida, Georgia, and Alabama. 

Mr. Arnold. How long have you held that position? 

Mr. Morgan. Three and a half years. 

Mr. Arnold. At this point, I will introduce into the record the 
very excellent statement that you have furnished us. 

(The statement follows:) 


Displacement of Farm Families Caused by National Defense Activities 
in Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida 


Part I 
I. The Impact of National Defense on the Rural Rehabilitation Program of the Farm Security Adminis- 
tration and on Farm Labor Supply. 

(a) A Program for Living (Food for Freedom). 
II. The Impact of National Defense on the Rural Planning and Resettlement Program of the Farm 

Security Administration. 
III. Migration Problems of Farm Families Caused by Government Acquisition of Farm Land for Defense. 




A. Questionnaires employed by the Farm Security Administration in conducting the survey. 

B. Map of Defense Areas and Relocation Tracts. 

C. Review of Land Areas Acquired by the Government for Defense. Character and Problems of the 

Farm Families Displaced and Relocation and Other Assistance Rendered by Farm Security Ad- 

D. County Summary of Land Purchases by Relocation Corporation. 

Part II 
I. The Plantation Disintegrates (Talladega). 
II. They Move to Town (Huntsville). 

III. The Two Horse Farmer (Anniston). 

IV. Folks of the Piney Woods (Hinesville). 
V. A Town is Plowed Under (Hazlehurst). 


Any consideration of the problem of "defense" displacement of farm families 
in the four southeastern States of Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and South Caro- 
lina (comprises region 5 of the Farm Security Administration) must take into 
account that the situation as it affects this region is not emergent, not just the 
result of unusual circumstances, but part and parcel of chronic conditions. The 
dislocations and their impacts herein described are the results of historic forces 
merely sped or accentuated by the defense program. Efforts at amelioration, 
therefore, should not be regarded as of special nature, but as part of a long-range 
development and strengthening of human, social, and economic values. 

While approximately 4,700 families, representing some 20,000 persons, have 
been forced from their farms and homes in Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, 
and Florida directly because of national defense and war activities, many times 
more than this number have been compelled to leave farms in despair and in 
thousands of cases without definite prospects, without anything more than the 
pressure of a desperate need; or, in more recent cases, they have hastened from 
farms voluntarily to work at jobs created by the day's national necessity. In 
short, displacement is caused by agricultural competitive factors or so-called 
natural economic forces, not alone by war. 

These thousands were moved to seize opportunity which they could not find 
in scanty acres, or impoverished land, under dispiriting conditions of existence in 
flimsy houses and primitive surroundings. 

The "defense evacuees" are but a copy of the others. They are no less inse- 
cure. Their insecurity is reflected by their bewilderment, their helplessness, 
their hardships when payment for their humble homes is delayed even for the 
briefest of periods. They — and their uncertainties- — are the product of low 
standards and depressed conditions long endured, which brought them to the 
point where, when emergency befell, they were without resources to do anything 
about it. Their plight is not the result of a cataclysm but of an accumulation of 

For decades before 1941, when the defense effort began, a process of displace- 
ment by. natural and economic forces was in operation. There was a marked 
decline of population in many rural counties in the 1920-30 period of the great 
migration. The most recent report of the Census Bureau shows that this process 
continues. In the State of Alabama, for example, there were 273,455 farms in 
1935, only 231,746 in 1940. While the number of full owners declined in this 
period onlv from 81,624 to 80,303, the number of tenants and croppers declined 
from 244,221 to 177,594. 

Obviously, from the record of decline in the total number of farms, it follows 
that the decline -in number of tenants and croppers does not mean that more of 
the latter groups rose to land ownership; it indicates, rather, that they descended 
in the scale from farm operators to day laborers or were forced from the land 
entirely, driven to seek employment on Work Projects Administration or to 
subsist precariously amid the unskilled or semiskilled hordes on the fringes of our 
cities. Analyzing population changes in the last decade, one student of the 
subject stated: 1 

"The urban increase in the South (14.8 percent) was nearly three times as 
rapid as the national urban increase. The rural and town increase in the South 
was somewhat slower than the national average. This meant a net gain of over 
1,000,000 people in southern cities by migration from rural areas." 

i T. J. Woofter, Jr., in Social Forces (March 1941). 


This author added: "The agricultural system of certain sections could not 
adequately support the 1930 population and an adjustment would have required 
an actual decrease in farm residents or a radical change in the system." 

The reasons for this migration are now generally known. They include: 
changes in types of farming, dwindling world markets, dwindling land resources, 
increase in the use of machinery, displacement of tenants, croppres, and laborers 
through restriction of cropland under control programs, growing inability of the 
small individual farmer to compete with larger operators in marketing or other- 
wise traditional ruinous private credit systems. Then there was a multitude of 
other factors related to temperament, health, disintegration of families as younger 
members foreswore farm life, weaned from their feeling for the land. 

It is significant that in one county in Georgia the number of full farm owners 
declined in the last 5 years from 493 to 467 and the number of tenants from 884 
to 629. The implications of this record should be plain when it is noted that while 
the number of farms declined in this county, the average size of farms increased 
from 75.1 to 81.6 acres (the average increase for Georgia as a whole was from 101 
to 109.6 acres). This shows the trend toward larger individual ownership and there- 
fore away from the family-type, small-operator farm. The larger the holdings, 
the more disturbed and less stable will become the rank and file of rural workers, 
the greater the incentive to mechanized farming ; and the less need of human labor. 
Such changes impair the idea of a numerous, sturdy, and productive rural popu- 
lation, the dream of independence on the land as man's natural estate. Thus, by 
not too great an effort we may discern a menace to democracy. 

The Impact of National Defense on the Rural Rehabilitation Program 
of the Farm Security Administration and on Farm Labor Supply 

Despite the fortuitous element in defense dislocation, it seems necessary there- 
fore, when one approaches a program of treatment, to consider the general and 
historic problem of farm displacement along with the special problem of the 
moment. Below is recited the broad findings of a study of new impacts on the 
program of the Farm Security Administration which was made for purposes of 
this investigation: 

1. There is a direct relationship between effective farm rehabilitation pro- 
grams and stability. 

2. While some dislocation of the rehabilitation program has occurred, a survey 
on the comparative movement of Farm Security Administration and non-Farm 
Security Administration farm families to village, town, or city for off-farm em- 
ployment revealed that national defense stimulated industrial activities are 
pulling off the farm proportionately larger numbers of non-Farm Security Ad- 
ministration farm families than those under the supervision and guidance of the 
Farm Security Administration. How many will return, and to what prospects 
or opportunity is an open and serious question. 

3. Good land areas, most stable people. 

4. The stress of war upon populations, upon goals of planning and of action, 
upon all our thinking and being, has increased obligations, both of service and 
administration, of the rural planning and resettlement program of Farm Security. 
Essentially dedicated to rehabilitation of rural people depressed by circumstances 
both social and economic, Farm Security Administration finds that new condi- 
tions affecting people make automatic claims. 

5. It is necessary to continue in this field of service an agency of flexible 
program and authorization — which, while wide in scope, is directed to the single 
end of serving need of people beset by remediable conditions. 

6. There is a shortage of surplus farm labor, but programs leading to better 
utilization of farm labor may avert any great disaster to the public welfare on 
this point. Many people are too prone to regard the farm labor problem in 
simple mathematical terms rather than as a problem to be attacked by a radical 
program if there are to be any substantial and enduring adjustments. 

7. Farm wages are competing violently with urban standards, and the necessity 
of narrowing the gap between them is becoming more evident. 

8. Evolution has caught up with plantation paternalism, marked as it was by 
absolute dependence of "my hands" on their landlord, and with $10 to $15 a 
month labor. 

9. As small tenants move off, landlords (discouranged or displeased by the 
trend) turn to machinery, to new types of farming or land usage. New produc- 
tion quotas seem to accelerate this development in spots. 

10. Increase of land sale and rental values are likely to be matters of great 



11. Restoration of wasted, abandoned, and submarginal land must become a 
matter of broad programs and national concern. 

The Farm Security Administration study referred to above was made on the 
basis of questionnaires (see Appendix for copies of questionnaire employed) 
directed to the supervisors in charge of county or unit offices in the Rural Rehabili- 
tation program to managers of rural planning projects and to managers of reloca- 
tion areas. Questionnaires were sent to 248 county or unit (combination of 
counties) supervisors in region 5. Responses were obtained from 141 of these, 
fortunately so well distributed as to form an accurate guide to conclusions. 

Specific Findings 

1. Farm abandonment and the land problem reports received from the region's 
field offices showed that approximately 7,500 members of borrower families had 
found work on defense projects or in private industry which has been stimulated 
by defense activities. The number must be approximated, because the move- 
ment is fluid and because the questionnaire asked information about all members 
of the family, not only the borrower. 

Of those who found work, about 4,500 were heads of families, 3,000 were other 
members of the farmsteads. The majority went to work on defense projects — 
camp construction, munition plants, etc., which could not be expected to endure 
or to establish the basis of solid future connections. It was significant that 70 
percent of the work involved called for unskilled labor; otherwise it is likely that 
most of the small farmers would have been unable to qualify for the employment. 

Rural rehabilitation supervisors of the Farm Security Administration reported 
that 690 borrowers had abandoned farm and home plans entirely. This is less 
than one in 100 borrowers, a proportion which is not sufficient to cause concern in 
itself. The reports showed 169 of these in 37 South Carolina counties, 253 in 35 
Alabama counties, 253 in 62 Georgia counties, and 15 in 7 Florida counties. 1 

However, more than half the family heads who went away to work were reported 
as having left their farm plans to be maintained by younger members of the 
families, a fact which was considered in the majority of cases as likely to have the 
effect of decreasing efficiency of operation, or reducing the possibility of winter 
cover crops and of preparation for the 1942 crop year. However, it was reported 
that most of those who went away to work were sincere in their professions of 
desire to return to farming when the windfall of defense employment disappears. 
As an illustration of this condition may be cited the South Carolina report, which 
showed that of 1,217 family heads going away, 565 left the farm work to others in 
their households in the 37 counties reporting. 


The impact of the national defense program on farm security activities is of 
paramount interest. The National Rehabilitation Activities Report for Septem- 
ber shows that in this region (region 5) the highest percentage of non-Farm 
Security Administration families in the Nation moved from farms to villages, 
towns or cities during the months of June, July, and August. On the other hand, 
in region 5, the lowest percentage of standard Farm Security Administration 
borrowers moved to urban areas during the same period. 

Let us examine the migration and off -farm employment situation for this region 
by States, the data summarized for months of April through October 1941. Less 
than five-tenths of 1 percent of our standard borrowers in the region moved from 
their farm to urban areas during this period. Alabama with fifty-three hundredths 
of 1 percent was highest, with [thirty-four hundredths of 1 percent for South 
Carolina as the lowest. (See table A.) 

Table A. — Farm Security Administration borrowers that moved to villages, towns, or 
cities, April through October 1941 

Region and States 

case load 






98, 244 





37, 607 
15, 630 










i The response from Florida was smaller than elsewhere, which is not important in view of the fact that 
defense construction has been less in this State than elsewhere in the region. 



Over one and five-tenths families per hundred reported of non-Farm Security 
Administration borrowers living on farms adjoining farms of Farm Security 
Administration borrowers moved to urban areas. This was also highest in 
Alabama with over two and four-tenths per hundred reporting. (See table B:) 

Table B. — Number of occupants of farms adjoining Farm Security Administration 
borrowers that moved to villages, towns, or cities, April through October 1941 

Region and States 

of farms 



18, 590 










Table C. — Borrower families with 1 or more members moving to villages, towns, or 
cities, and borrower families with 1 or more members obtaining off-farm employment, 
period, April through October 1941 

Region and States 


Moving to towns 

Obtaining off-farm 










65, 163 
15, 405 
51, 608 
38, 437 









Borrower families with one or more members migrating to town is shown in 
table C. One and two-tenths per hundred families for the region with one and 
three-tenths in Alabama and only nine-tenths of 1 percent in South Carolina. 

Twelve and one-tenth families per hundred visited by county supervisors 
reported one or more members of the family obtaining employment off the farm 
keeping their residence with the farm family. 

Sixteen and eight-tenths of each hundred families in South Carolina reported 
one or more family members employed off the farm but residing with the farm 
family (see table C) . 



Table 4 of this report gives the number of plans completed with new and old 
borrowers and also dockets submitted on new and old borrowers, by States and 
districts. Is the progress of this planning work moving ahead of last season? 
Cumulative figures will be attached to the- monthly report for November. 


Table 2 of this report gives the status of the classification of the case loads by 
districts. You will note an increase in nonstandard cases due to transfer of 
Corporation only cases from standard to nonstandard classification. Regional 
report No. 5 to be released about November 25 will also show the number classified 
into the collection only group. 

Another section of the questionnaire opened up a wide range of problems. 
Seeking information on sale and rental prices of land under the new impacts, it 
ran head-on into the entire land problem, which is a thing of many elements. The 
findings revealed the need of programs far broader than anything yet undertaken. 
Generally noted was a tendency toward increase of market price of land and rentals. 
While not universally so, the burden of observation and experience was that 


farm rents already had increased materially and were going up. Several reported 
increases of 25 to 50 percent. This seems to be a natural result of a situation into 
which has entered the factors of parity, guaranteed prices for many products, 
general increase of prices and costs, new production goals which encourage crops 
for which hitherto there have been limits (for example, peanuts), the pressure of 
public land-acquisition programs, and increasing demand for land. 

Nobody is particularly to blame for this inflationary land movement. The 
position of the landowner himself in the Southeast has been for years generally 
none too secure. For years he had seen, what with one circumstance or another, 
the value of his land dwindling; and now that forces are in play which open a 
prospect of better returns, either natural or artificial, his inclination is obvious. 


Rise in prices of land, rentals, and farm commodity prices has resulted in changes 
in farm tenure arrangements. For one, the cash- rent system may be reduced as 
to the small farmer (although this observation is to be qualified, as explained in 
footnote 1 ). As one county supervisor put it, "Why should the landlord take 
$100 in cash when he may sharecrop and get $150?" 1 For another, there was a 
burden of opinion that the accumulating success of such efforts as those of the 
Farm Security Administration to improve the terms of leases (a 10-year lease 
was set as the goal last spring) may be halted, more or less temporarily. Being 
aware of present and impending changes in the agricultural economy, landowners 
have become increasingly loath to rent land on long-term leases; on the other hand, 
tenants are reluctant to be bound until they see which way the tide will turn. 
However, a strong minority of landowners feels that with labor becoming scarcer 
and with farm machinery probably becoming more difficult to obtain, it is advis- 
able to seek security through dependable leases, particularly since Farm Security 
Administration (in effect) is in the deal. 

Some expressed fear that, if the trend continued, the tenant-purchase program 
may be effected, because of statutory limits on land purchases of the Farm Se- 
curity Administration. This brings up the question of feasibility and of the 
wisdom of rigid limits of this sort. 

However, these considerations seem less significant as to long-range programs 
than another which was revealed in answers to the questionnaire. With rare 
exceptions the county supervisors reported a difficulty in getting good land for 
Farm Security Administration borrowers — a difficulty which is not the result of 
immediate circumstances, but of old conditions. Estimates indicate that as many 
as 200 applications for Farm Security Administration assistance had to be rejected 
in the last few years because suitable land was not available. 

This may have been due to any one of a number of circumstances. The appli- 
cant may have come along too late in the year, at a time when all good land was 
spoken for. Or, as is certainly the case here and there, landowners may resist 
the program, particularly when borrowers are wage hands who want to improve 
their status and become independent operators. Such landowners maintain that 
this reduces the necessary labor supply. Another possible factor in the apparent 
scarcity of suitable land is the client's own personal or economic limitation in 
trading for a location, a result probably of his long adverse experiences. 

But by and large, it appears that there is actually a deficiency of good land, 
and that this is a matter of paramount concern in connection with any program 
which seeks to establish security on the land, to end the steady decimation of a 
secure and independent rural population, and to maintain a national balance free 
of haphazard and hopeless migrations and conflicts. 

When to this prevailing condition is added to new trends toward larger owner- 
ship, toward greater use of machines as accustomed labor supply dwindles and 
as more and more landowners forswear accustomed methods of operation, it is 
plain that the inevitable problem of adjusting man to land after this extraordinary 
period becomes more impelling. Whither may the thousands turn for opportunity 
on the land? 

It appears that there exists a national, social obligation to undertake a program 
of rehabilitation and reclamation of the land— a program to be pressed on a large 
regional or national basis, rather than through wasteful and inapt efforts of single 
individuals. Such a plan undoubtedly calls for public subsidies and, indeed, it 

1 One change which is to be feared is increase in rent, in cases where the landlord prefers to retain the cash 
rent svstcm. Rising farm prices and the prospect of larger returns from the land are conducive to demand 
for higher rent. In case of the low-income farmer, who is benefited less than his substantial neighbor by such 
devices as parity and higher prices, this may hold a menace, as making it less possible for him to get desirable 
land at a price he can afford to pay out of his small operations. 


seems logical. The small farmer, certainly in the Southeast, requiring the utmost 
of his few acres to make a living, is unable to afford rotation, rest, or unproductive 
resuscitation of his land. If he borrows money, even from the Farm Security 
Administration he is supposed to live on his land and to repay his obligation. 
What is the alternative to his plight? What are the alternatives if we deny him 
participation in a program because available land is unsuitable now, although it 
might serve him fruitfully in the future? 

For answers we quote the responses of county supervisors to inquiries on this 
point. Said one: 

"I feel that worn-out, steep, submarginal land may be reclaimed if some satis- 
factory arrangements could be worked out to cover the first 3 years of unpro- 
ductive return. * * * I would like to take two families, amortize loans over 
sufficient period with no payment for the first 5 years' and give it a try." 

Another: "About half the county is at the present time of low earning power; 
too low to pay off a debt and permit the family to live. Most of this land could 
be made productive by soil building. In my opinion the soil-conservation 
program is building back some of this land, but should it become necessary in the 
future for many additional families to go back on the land, I think this could be 
accomplished only by greatly increased governmental subsidies for soil building 
and for buildings and repairs." 

Here is something to note. Here stands out in bright light the prospect of a 
great task of national scope that may well be the core of a program of recon- 
struction and social implementation after the war, if not to be affected imme- 

Secondary Displacement 

The questionnaire also included this query: "Have you any examples of poorer 
families being displaced as others, moving from defense areas, obtain land for a 
new start?" 

This question was posed in accord with the announced interest of this con- 
gressional committee in the matter of "secondary displacement." On this point, 
answers from the field, unfortunately were disappointing. It must be pointed out, 
however, although a related condition is seen in the report, previously described, 
that many applicants for assistance through the regular Farm Security Adminis- 
tration program could not be accepted because good land was not available. 

Generally speaking the information at this stage cannot be altogether statistical. 
In large part, it is qualitative, circumstantial, and personal. The most adequate 
data concerning the problem of secondary farm displacement are in the section of 
this report devoted to the case histories of men and women whose lives have been 
touched not only by the new but also by the historic forces converging upon the 
land and its dwellers. 

This mass of testimony shows clearly the impact of conditions and events upon 
human lives. These stories are of bewildered tenants and wage hands torn loose 
from their moorings of dependence on landlords and employers, of workers now 
perforce on industrial pay rolls who yet tell of a yearning to go back to the land 
from which they were forced, of women and men restive in trailer camps and fur- 
nished rooms, thinking of space that once they knew. Many are without hope 
of realizing their dreams, others feel they would not return to land thin and 
cramped, now that dollars jingle, however briefly, in their pockets. 

We submit that the evidence of "secondary displacement" is there, and that in 
the appendix of this report are illuminating revelations, dependable and accurate. 

Farm Labor Supply 

Long before the defense program bore down upon the rural Southeast, there 
were complaints of labor shortage. The outcry was raised in the 1920's of the 
great migration from the deep South. The villain of the story has taken various 
shapes: the boll weevil, the Work Projects Administration and other public wel- 
fare programs which have been progressively developed to help the groups in 
America so long condemned to low standards. Now it is "defense." 

There is much to be said about farm labor in the Southeast, and much to be 
suggested as to programs of development. 

The farm labor problem in this region should be regarded in the light of two 
general needed developments: 

1. Proper utilization. 

2. Improvement of conditions of work and living, which includes status, secur- 
ity, and reward beyond and inadequate day-by-day wage. 



As to the first, many evils of the so-called labor problem are inherent in the 
historic system of farming in this region. A vast potential supply of labor is 
unused because under the old "10-and-20" system — 10 acres of cotton, 20 of 
corn — there is no call upon two-thirds of the working capacity of the farmer. A 
tradition of idleness has grown up that is devastating as to human, social and 
economic values. 

The Farm Security Administration has undertaken to vary and to enrich the 
farming programs of its borrowers. Indeed, this has been the aim of every in- 
telligent agency, public and private, at work in the field of southern agriculture. 

The question should not be dismissed without a glance at results of a study 
conducted in region 5, showing the comparative utilization of labor under (a) the 
historic system, which utilizes only 198 man-days of labor out of 565.3 per year 
available in the average small farm family, (b) a modified system (cotton slightly 
reduced, a partial subsistence program added), which utilizes 276 man-days of 
the 565.3, (c) a well-developed system of complete subsistence combined with 
cash crops, which makes possible utilization of 435 man-days. 

Incidental values of the rounded subsistence and cash-crop program are shown 
in the fact that, besides providing a better living, it brings income in every month 
of the year, while the old system brings income in only a single month of the 
cotton harvest, making necessary borrowings and credit, with resultant further 
dimunition of the meager returns. 

Summary of the study and illustrative charts are given below, showing that 
not only exploitation and neglect but also poor utilization are problems to be 


As additional crops and livestock are added to farm plans, the available family 
labor is used more efficiently. According to recent studies by the Bureau of 
Agricultural Economics, the average farm family, not using hired labor, has an 
average of 4.3 workers, or 3.6 man-equivalent workers per family. This figure is 
arrived at by simple average of the number of persons per family by sex in each 
class, considering the time that youngsters of school age are ordinarily not in 
school. Considering weather conditions and various seasons of the year, this 
family could work a maximum of about 565 man-workdays of 10 hours each day 
on all commercial and subsistence crops and the care of subsistence livestock, as 




for field 


available for 

working crops 
and care of 
livestock by 

average family 

Man-days labor required for 
three selected farm plans 

No. 1 

No. 2 

No. 3 


















July . 













Can families provide themselves with productive work on the farm during what 
are ordinarily, under a one-crop farming system, considered "slack" labor seasons? 
This appears to be an even more important factor to consider in farm and home 
planning now that the defense program is drawing members of many Farm Security 
Administration families for off -farm industrial employment and military training. 

Improvement in methods of utilizing labor might well be recommended to large 
producers as well as to the individual small farmer. It is urged that seasonal peaks 
and emergencies might be diminishea, certainly in the Florida truck areas, by more 


extended schedules of planting so that maturity of crops will not come all at once 
to create a mad bidding for labor to be used in a brief concentrated period and then 

However, there remains the great problem of farm labor seen in light of employ- 
ment standards and customs, as well as of utilization. 

Our questionnaire asked: Is it a real shortage? Is it a shortage merely of surplus 
labor (which obviously works to the benefit of the employer in any field of 
activity)? Is it a shortage which might be overcome if better wages and more 
security on the job were offered? 

Significant was the number of responses (the majority) to the effect that the 
shortage was one of surplus labor. Significant, too, was the affirmative answer 
to the last question: Could the trouble be mended with better pay and more 
security? (Note.— Most of the responses to questionnaires were made before 
America's active participation in the war.) 

However, the deponents usually hastened to point out that rural employers 
in this region could not afford to pay more, that returns from farming under the 
historic economy did not justify or, indeed, allow more than the conventional 
$10 to $15 monthly contract wage, the 40-cent to $1 daily wage under temporary 

Perhaps this is true. Perhaps the resentment of employers at having to pay 
occasionally $1.25 to $1.50 per day because of crop emergency is understandable. 
At any rate, it but points to the fact that improvement in the condition of "farm 
labor" implies, as one great necessity, improvement in the total structure of agri- 
culture in this region, in its stability, completeness, self-containment. In the 
Southeast, at least, the labor problem is part of the general agricultural problem — 
including, as we have shown, the type of farming. 

What is "farm labor"? Is it an integral part of the agricultural economy and 
organization for the farm and the region? Or is it an undefined and impersonal 
factor, hardly to be regarded in human image, to be utilized a few months of the 
year for planting, cultivating, and harvesting, then callously abandoned to subsist 
as best it may through the more numerous months of inactivity? 

Will there ever be a solution of the "farm labor" problem until the rural wage 
worker is (1) invested with a status, respectable and responsible, (2) given a secu- 
rity for 12 months' living, whether a wage hand or a land owner, (3) assured of 
occupation whether upon a plot for his own subsistence or on "public works" 
(housing construction, a reclamation program, rural industry, projects allied with 
forestry and utilization of forest projects, etc.), (4) included in a social-welfare 
program, (5) embraced in a broader and more definitive employment service, 
(6) given a place to live and conditions under which living is tolerable, (7) in 
case of the migratory worker, given safe and adequate means of shelter, trans- 
portation, freedom from physical and moral contaminations? 

In short, they must acquire all the rights and the responsibilities now largely 
possessed by other wage workers before they may be relied upon as an adequate 
labor force in agriculture. 

It seems that this problem reveals the necessity of legislation, of planning, of 
continued service through agencies designed to improve the condition of the inse- 
cure humblest in the scale. Farm labor in the Southeast has always been insecure. 
Lately it has become unstable to a progressively larger degree because only lately 
has it caught a glimpse of alternatives to its condition. Whether this glimpse 
strikes upon reality or upon a mirage, we should not say here; the fact remains 
that it includes vistas which in the past generations were not discernible, and 
which when they appeared brought allurements not to be withstood. And so at 
last insecurity has borne the inevitable fruit of undependability and irresponsi- 


Interesting were other observations described in responses to our questionnaire, 
among them the following: 

1. The families or family heads who moved from farms or who found work and 
left the "young 'uns" behind to carry on with the farm and home plans are rarely 
the best clients. They range in rough classification from "average" to "worst," 
with more of the latter. 

2. Rare was the supervisor who expected the increased earning of Farm 
Security Administration borrowers from defense projects or private industry to 
be saved for farm operations, for debt payment or for a rainy day. More than 
90 percent of the supervisors reporting said the windfall money is being spent as 
fast as it is received — for second-hand automobiles, radios, luxury foods, or just 


plain living. There is a clear explanation for this — they have had so little, have 
developed so many desires. For another thing, the increased cost of living when 
they move to town, or when they have to travel a long distance back and forth, 
or when they neglect home food production and must turn to store-bought food, 
takes a large part of their new income. However, some hope was expressed that 
after the first flush of new prosperity there would be better practices. 

3. Whether it was wishful thinking or not, most supervisors said they believed 
the borrowers who went away to find work were sincere in saying they wanted to 
go back to farming. At any rate, it was suggested that loans based on agreements 
to provide own living should be made, if there was a chance of holding the families 
on the farms. It is interesting that many supervisors said they encouraged the 
family heads to take the outside work, hoping that at least some of the extra 
money would go into debt payment and improvement of standards. 

4. Reports varied as to more or fewer loan applications. This seems to depend 
on location, proximity of works projects, quality of land, and permanence of the 
employment enterprises. Generally the hope was expressed that the families back 
home would carry on subsistence programs, and thus hold the land pending the 
return of the wage earner to farming. 

A Program for Living 

It must be obvious from all which has been stated that the stronger is built a 
condition of independence and self-sufficiency, the greater will be security of 
existence in the Southeast — for farmers small and large, for farm laborers, for the 
general social and economic structure which must be protected from the impact of 
dispossessed, restless, impoverished, and unskilled masses creating a core of 
instability for all standards. 

Results of the Department of Agriculture's recent effort to this end give evidence 
that the desired condition can be created. The part of the Farm Security Ad- 
ministration particularly has brought results encouraging for the future. 

It has grown to be a habit in the South to dismiss from any calculations of civic, 
social, and economic responsibility that broad segment of people, white and black, 
comprising the "ragged-edge" patch farmers and laborers. These have been 
regarded, too long and by too many of us, as irresponsible and beyond 

However, these people, the borrowers and clients of Farm Security, have come 
forward in the last 6 or 8 months of the Nation's emergency to show a potentiality 
of redemption and independence, a sense of loyalty and a latent energy that 
renews faith in the American stock — and demonstrates the value of guidance and 
assistance; in other words, the value of a definite program instead of laissez faire 
and letting nature take its course. 

The failure of the average small southern farmer to provide an adequate home 
living for himself and his family is an old story. It is the outcome of the tradi- 
tional type of farming. It has involved the necessity of buying food — many a 
time on'credit, with its additional high cost, because there is no cash — or of doing 
without. It resulted in a reduction of living standards, of outlook, and of health. 
About 9 months ago the word went out that more food must be produced. 
The Department of Agriculture pointed out that we must feed our allies overseas, 
overcoming the enemy blockade; that we must produce more food for use of sol- 
diers and the enlarged industrial army; that we must produce more food for build- 
ing a stronger Nation generally, overcoming the handicaps of poor nutrition 
against which low-income families have labored and which were reflected in the 
alarmingly high percentage of men rejected for military service. 

The Farm Security Administration in region 5, along with other agencies of 
the Department, accepted this commission. It launched last May a food for 
defense campaign, designed to reach thousands of low-income farmers who 
previously had little or no tradition of food production on an adequate scale. 

A total of $4,610,710.23 was lent to 52,649 families, embracing approximately 
300,000 persons— an average of $87.57 per family — to start operations by acquiring 
chickens, cows, and hogs, livestock, equipment for their care and feed to carry 
them along. Now, home production of food has been preached for generations, 
but we all know how far short the South has fallen from satisfactory response — 
how money equivalent of the cotton crop has been spent outside its borders for 
food. The region has been inhibited, in this respect, by many things, including 
tradition, habit and necessity. 

Could these inhibitions be overcome, we feel that the food for defense pro- 
gram, and its larger development, the food for freedom program, have proved 
that they can and are being overcome. 


Two new incentives were provided — two incentives never before available to 
the low-income farmer. One was the spur of appeal to help the Nation in an 
emergency. The other was the offer of practical assistance. 

Each family was asked to add 50 baby chicks to its flock and to take in addition 
one of three alternatives: Two more milk cows, one brood sow, or 50 more chicks. 
As to the chickens, the 52,649 families asked for and got 5,000,000 baby chicks 
in May. Because of indifference, custom, difficulty of marketing, etc., many 
thousands of these families had no experience with chickens as source of income. 
Most of them — and, we confess, some of us also — were dubious about the hardi- 
ness and chance of existence of "May chicks." 

However, more than 85 percent of the chicks were raised, because the borrowers 
got good stock, were given the means to get good equipment and feed, were 
taught how to use brooders and were carefully directed otherwise. In course of 
several weeks, time came to cull the flocks, to save pullets for egg production. 
Cockerels to the number of nearly 1,800,000 were sold as fryers, the little farmer 
learning about advantages of group selling in reaching large markets and keening 
prices stable. No longer was it necessary for the little fellow to go through the 
discouraging experience of carrying a handful of chickens to town and there 
trying vainly to compete with organized markets. The sale of fryers brought an 
aggregate of $750,000 — cash income they never had before. The pullets remained 
as a permanent investment for eggs and larger flocks. And, the most important 
thing, most of the families asked to turn the new income back into more chickens. 

The same sort of experience followed investment of food for defense loans in 
20,000 milk cows and 20,000 brood sows. 

Today, with food production goals increased beyond anything contemplated 
last summer, the borrowers of Farm Security already are launched substantially 
in the greater national effort, sustained by profitable experience and new incen- 

They are taking in stride the new goals; and today, with the pullets laying, with 
milk production and pork production increased, there are to be seen in this region 
commercial egg routes and milk routes going to the small farms to collect the 
products of the new venture. It is estimated that a daily income of $20,000 to 
$25,000 has been added to the cash available to Farm Security borrowers — and it 
has been proved that rehabilitation can be accomplished when it is sought in the 
spirit as well as the physical substance — that a program will work, and that food 
can be produced on the small farm to profit and benefit. 

The end result of this program is better living, aside from cash profit. How 
the increased food production and the proper instruction in its use will work to 
improve the health of the small producer — for his first aim is to feed himself, 
before going to market with his surplus — may be seen in the results of a study 
which showed that the proportion of men rejected for the draft in Farm Security 
families was 33 percent lower than the total percentage in the area. This is 
evidence of the value of organized programs of better subsistence. 

As Seen From the Field 

For illustration of all these points, there follows a number of incidental and 
illustrative quotations from the supervisors' reports. Conflicting opinions are 
given on some points, but this fact adds to the vitality of the debate and at the 
same time shows the variety of conditions and complexity of the problem. 


Cleburne County. — Personal contact (where possible) may have more effect in 
getting the men working away from home to return to their homes and farming. 
Following a good subsistence farming program will be a hard problem to get 
defense workers to follow. If working on defense projects, a loan for farming 
operations might be made with the family taking care of their cash living. Very 
few families will save money to help them with their farm operations after the war. 
The majority live from day to day and do not seem to think of what will happen 
tomorrow. Interest in selling land at this time is overpowering that of "tying 
the land down." This is the main thing being evidenced in our efforts to obtain 
10-year leases in Cleburne County. 

Sumter County. — We are not making any loan unless the family has labor enough 
to continue, then the amount loaned for farm operating expense is reduced and is 
taken care of by members working away. If the man is working away from home 
there is very little work he will do at home other than that which seems necessary, 

60396— 42— pt. 32 8 


such as planting and cultivation. He does not have time for other things. In 
most cases they will pay enough to hold on to land. The better more industrious 
young families are leaving and I am afraid if they get a taste of big money they 
will stay away from the dilapidated conditions they have known until they have 
to come back. Tenure improvements, land improvements, and building improve- 
ments are badly needed to make farming for these families more attractive. 

Montgomery County. — We should attempt to get long-term leases for county at 
large; improve homes and outbuildings; better water supply and sanitary sur- 
roundings; screen homes; follow Agricultural Adjustment Administration pro- 
gram in all places. 

Dale County .—Make smaller loans due to increased income from outside sources, 
increased farm prices, better crops and more subsistence food made. There is a 
shortage of good farming land in Dale County and if the proposed Army camp is 
located, there will be approximately 275 to 300 families who will have to be re- 
located and a large percentage of these will have to be transferred to other counties. 
The farmers who have found outside employment on defense projects and private 
enterprises have not abandoned their farms and farm work. It is only tempo- 
rary employment and they will return to their farms in the next 2 months to re- 
sume farming operations for another year. 

Tallapoosa County. — If families are willing and want to do subsistence farming 
we plan to leave chattels. We would make no loans. We are expecting this to 
seriously jeopardize our tenure program both from the tenant and from the 
landlord's standpoint. Conditions at present are so uncertain that both tenant 
and landlord are not willing to enter into long-time agreement. 

Mobile County. — Families will not save money to finance farming operations 
after the war, except with few exceptions. Some will buy a few bonds. Most of 
their earnings will be absorbed for better living and more or less extravagant 
spending. Close and careful supervision may result in wiser use of money and 
more savings. New conditions will almost nullify our new 10-year improvement 
lease program in this county. I suggest small loans, supporting necessary food 
production as well as ample feed production for increased production of poultry 
and livestock products. 

Etowah County. — * * * Not so much the loss of labor, but the increased 
amount of tenants and landowners doing a part-time farming is the reason for 
family type farms being broken up into small tracts * * * living on land 
that would be considered submarginal if it was put to proper use. Such things 
as this can be corrected only when we are able to get the folks better tied to the 
land they are going to work and make them see where they can profit by building 
up this land * * * Where a man is working out we do not expect to make him 
any loan for cash living expenses, but in some cases will have to make loans for 
farm operating expenses, especially fertilizer * * * I believe that subsistence 
crops will suffer most * * * In most cases the family will not save money to 
finance their farming operations after the war. They are spending their income 
about as fast as they receive it at the present time. It is much harder to get a 
part-time farmer to improve the land and pasture than it is a fellow that is not 
doing anything except farming * * * I believe new conditions will have 
considerable effect on our tenure program, as I have already found that landlords 
are rather unsettled and undecided about future conditions and, therefore, do 
not wish to tie their land up in a long-time lease. Tenants are also more un- 
settled and are not overanxious to borrow money to put on another place and 
expect to be tied to this place for at least 10 years. 

Butler County. — I feel that the new. conditions will tend to bring about shorter- 
term leases and fewer improvements to houses and outbuildings by landlords. 
In my opinion, generally there will be less desire for land improvement and develop- 
ment on the part of landowners. 

St. Clair County. — * * * When emergency defense work stops we expect 
workers to flood back to the farm and make land hard to get. Many landlords 
resent tenants doing much work off the farm and if rent is not very good, will 
cancel lease. We have been approached a good many times by farmers who 
wanted to borrow only a small amount of money for the purchase of cows and 
chickens. Production credit is unable to furnish very small loans and Farm 
Security Administration cannot finance them and take a second lien on the crop. 
If we could in some way be enabled to make these loans from $20 to $100 without 
writing the entire farm plan for these farmers we could boost farm production. 

Chilton County. — Defense workers are purchasing automobiles, paying old debts, 
and spending for recreation. 


The share rent will become more popular as the price of farm commodities rise. 
Good land will be easier to secure due to the fact that lots of farmers will be gone 
to public works. 

Conecuh County.— A client leaves his farm and goes to Mobile to accept employ- 
ment, leaving his wife and children in charge of the farm. The wife and children 
cannot manage the farm as it should be and thus low yield and unprofitable 
operation results. 

Clay County. — Owners are changing over to crops that do not require so much 
labor. An example of these crops is more oats, wheat, corn, etc., to replace the 
cotton crop. They are also raising more livestock. 

Coffee County.- — We doubt if these families generally will save enough money to 
pay their Farm Secutity Administration obligations to finance them after the 
emergency. Most of those leaving, however, are in good position so far as the 
Farm Security Administration debt is concerned, the majority having paid up. 
We would suggest no loans to any family whose head may be away working at 
defense or private industries, with possible exception of fertilizers * * * our 
idea to demand them to live on funds from employment in defense or private 

Calhoun County. — The effect of this employment on the financial conditions of 
a family is that it is increasing their standard of living at the present time. They 
are "living up" their incomes and there will be need of Farm Security Administra- 
tion assistance as soon as work is over. The effect new conditions are tending 
to have on tenure program is to reduce the number of tenants and increase the 
number of farm laborers. For example, large landowners are having to turn to 
use of more farm machinery and to livestock in order to replace the present short- 
age of labor. They will have too much invested in this machinery and livestock 
to quit it when increase work is over and labor returns to farms. Therefore, he 
will only hire these laborers during rush seasons. 

Talladega County. — Landlords attitude toward tenants is not very good as lots 
of tenants have left the farm and secured defense jobs and landlords received very 
little in return. 

Fayette County. — Having to operate farm, will necessitate older children having 
to lose a lot of needed time at school * * * real shortage of labor in county, 
resulting in more labor-saving farm machinery being used next year * * * 
evidenced by buying some now. We feel there will be little necessity for following 
up families as majority of them have already planned to return to farms and make 
a crop next year. Land development and improvement is at a higher stage now 
than ever before. * * * 

Covington County. — Younger members of family do not take very much interest 
in farm operations. School attendance will decrease due to fact that mother will 
keep children home to help carry on farm operations.. There is a real shotage of 
labor * * * Landlord will be willing to give more long-time leases than ever 
before * * * great opportunity to improve tenure * * * a great deal 
of expense and loss of time will exist when client returns to farm as well as a small 
chance of locating a farm. 

Tuscaloosa County. — The number of applications is not more than half the num- 
ber to this date each of the 2 past years. Causes are defense industries and more 
liberal local finance resulting from better prices. Amount of loans will decrease 
because of better prices. Food for defense program is expected to reduce cost of 
cash expense for living needed formerly in loans and/or grants. 

Loivndes County.— In 1940 the Farm Security was assisting 18 tenant farmers 
on one large tract of land. A greater portion of this farm had been changed to 
livestock farming the latter part of 1939. In December and January of 1940 and 
1941 a number of these tenants were told by the landlord to move as he was going 
to need the land they were farming for livestock. The most of them moved with 
the exception of 3 families. Five of those that moved from this farm voluntarily 
liquidated all chattels as they had no desire to farm elsewhere, because they had 
lived on this farm all their lives. Four moved to an adjoining county and we have 
been informed that they are most unhappy and dissatisfied in their new surround- 
ings. Two abandoned their farm and chattels to get jobs on defense projects. 
The remaining 4 moved to other farms in the vicinity. We do not believe many of 
these tenants would have continued with this landlord anyway as he showed no 
consideration or interest in them other than collecting rents. In November 1941 
we had another tenant to leave as this landlord had taken his choice corn and hay 
lands for pasture. At present we have only 2 of the original 18 clients on this 
farm and these 2 have advised us they are planning to obtain farms elsewhere. 


Hillsborough County. — One reason for the shortage of migrant labor in this 
section is the lack of adequate housing. In the past many families lived in tents, 
but we understand this practice has been stopped * * *. We believe effort 
should be made to establish migrant camps here. * * *. Many of the farmers 
who have gone to outside employment did so solely because they felt they could 
make more money. They are really farmers, and if farming could be made 
profitable, then those- in outside employment would quickly return to farming 

* * *. We have always had trouble getting long time leases * * * more 
trouble now than in the past. 

Madison County. — New conditions will make it difficult to obtain long-term 
leases and landlords will not make improvements, and rent will be advanced. 
Suggest that clients working away from farm be asked to execute a renewal note, 
and that amount due for the coming year be collected when crops are sold, or 
some disposition made of the account, either by repossession or by some other 
means that will force client to make his full payment and thus keep his account 
current as long as he continues to work away. 

Orange County. — Clients in this area have gone to defense projects * * * 
believe 90 percent will return * * * I do not anticipate any change nor do I 
anticipate any need for change in Federal Security Administration program 

* * *. In practically all cases we are planning to increase production by slightly 
more acreage^where possible. 


Barley County. — It is a definite fact that if these projects continue up into the 
coming farming year that it will affect farming conditions in this county in that 
there will be less farming going on although I think the majority of the people 
that are working there that are on farms will make some arrangements for the 
farm work to be carried on, although it probably will be less efficient in some 
cases. There probably will be several who quit farming * * * will come 
back when this work is over. 

Brantley County.— On the average these families will not save much for future 
farming operations, but are buying clothes and household goods. It seems that 
most of the people realize that present conditions are temporary and as soon as 
war is over tenure will be normal. At present, rent is higher and many landlords 
complain that they hesitate to rent on shares because they have no assurance 
that renter will not leave home for a public works job. 

Harris and Talbot Counties. — Due to short crops for several years and lack of 
income, houses are going down and land going up. After the defense work and 
high salary jobs are cut out, it is going to be a lot of trouble for this shiftless labor 
group to find suitable housing, etc., on farms as they have in the past. 

Hart County. — With reference to farm families on Farm Security Administration 
program with the head of family working away from home, I suggest that we work 
out a plan with the family with all farm and home operations being financed from 
money he will get from defense project or private industry. I think we should do 
everything possible to try to carry on these farm and home operations and should 
not be too hasty in recommending repossession. If this is done we will be that 
far ahead of the game when he will finally be our responsibility again. These 
families will follow a good subsistence program with close supervision. Majority 
will not save money. Some will improve land and pasture, but majority will 
neglect this. Due to shortage in housing facilities and increased prices in rents 
it is my belief that most of these will pay enough rent to cause land owners to 
let them hold on the land if and when they return to farming. 

Apvling County.— I don't think the defense work has been of but very little 
benefit to farm families in this section. The cost of living while they are at work, 
union dues, transportation, etc., take up most of their profit. Several have made 
statement * * * they would have been as well off at home and looked after 
their crops better * * * * land is, and will be, hard to get on long-term lease. 
I think this is due to increased prices in farm products and not to defense. 

Bleckley and Pulaski Counties. — The head of family leaving home to work on 
defense projects or some other industry has necessitated children of school age to 
remain at home to help farm operations. Families off farm now — and will be off 
in 1942 — will not pay enough rent to the landlord for him to hold the land for them 
until they return to farming. These new conditions will make it more difficult to 
obtain long term leases and the rental rates will be higher. 

Banks County. — As a result of our observations, new conditions from an eco- 
nomic standpoint will cause an increase in rent and especially next year it is felt 


that a large percentage of standing rent contracts will be canceled and will call 
for higher rents than before. 

Carroll County. — Unsettled conditions and the tendency toward inflation make 
it exceedingly difficult to rent land for a long period of years. 

Chattachoochee County. — It is almost impossible to hold on to families who find 
employment at defense work, or at other public employment. With the purchase 
of 50,000 acres of farm land for military reservation decreasing the cultivable land 
in this section, because of so many new jobs opening up in the vicinity of Colum- 
bus, it is next to impossible to find suitable land and houses for farmers. Never- 
theless, we are making farm plans with about 50 families in Muscogee County, 
and we are including in these farm plans, poultry production, truck farming, and 
in several instances, livestock growing. I do not think many, if any, will save 
enough money to help them finance farm operations after the war, and I think 
that there will be several hundred stranded farm families who know no other 
trade who will be left in Columbus and in near vicinity after defense work. These 
families will have to be taken care of by some Government agency. 

Cherokee County. — In our opinion it will be more difficult to get long-term 
leases because landlords will be constantly on the lookout for full-time farmers in 
order to get more rent. 

Colquitt County. — Considerable land is being purchased by landlords to add to 
their holdings and also many tenants who are in better financial condition. 
This is taking many of these farms out of range of our program. 

Fannin and Gilmer Counties.- — Since men now working on defense programs are 
planning to farm next year, we expect to make plans for farming operations as 
usual. We do not believe that defense work will materially affect Farm Security 
Administration program here. 

Fulton County. — I do not think new conditions are helping our tenure program, 
as many absent landlords feel they may now have a chance to sell their land. I 
had one instance in which the landlord was practically ready to sign a 10-year 
lease and admitted it was a good thing but finally refused on grounds that he 
might have an opportunity to sell the farm to one of the many city people who 
are buying up farms. If greater agricultural production is needed this can be 
accomplished only by greater agricultural earnings either by Government sub- 
sidies or increased prices. 

Heard County. — The new conditions will have a tendency to make our land- 
tenure program more difficult. 

Lincoln County. — We do not think new conditions will materially change our 
tenure program. We think conditions are temporary, farmers on defense jobs 
will return to farms in short time, unless conditions change materially. 

Paulding County. — We plan, in every case where possible, to work up farm and 
home plans and place all cash living expenses under the "We can pay column." 
These new conditions may cause some families to hesitate in making long-term 
leases. They think they may be able to take advantage of increased employment 

Polk County. — The greater majority of clients who have gone to public works 
are not true farmers, but have been farming through necessity rather than through 
preference. Those who return to farms will return because they will be unable to 
find future employment at public works. This type of client is not only making 
the poorest repayment record, but are also making the poorest subsistence record. 

Rabun County. — The new conditions will naturally improve tenancy, due to fact 
that good tenants will be able to secure long-time rental agreements, and bad 
tenants will become day laborers on farms, which should be incentive to all 
tenants to display an interest in keeping farms in good condition and at sometime 
be eligible for leases. 

Walton County. — Increased prices have caused landlords to want to work their 
own land. This will make it almost impossible to get long leases. Our families 
are being influenced also by increased prices. They are wanting to expand their 
farming operations far above their ability to work the land or finance the oper- 

Worth County. — New conditions practically demolish tenure program. _ How 
can you expect to get farms at $100 rent when the landlord can sharecrop it and 
make $150? 

Crisp and Dooly Counties. — Money being earned is spent from pay day to pay 
day. Under prevailing conditions will be difficult job to obtain long-time leases 
* * * Through educational program, try to get families to realize that high 
wages at defense projects are only temporary, that they will be better off in long 
run if they remain on farm and raise plenty. Also prospects are bright right 


now for high income from "money crops" which will be opportunity for many 
to pay off what they owe Farm Security Administration and get in position to 
carry on operations with their own resources. 

Chandler and Evans Counties. — Definite increase in wage scale and shortage of 
farm labor * * * Very few of them will save much, if any, money from 
outside work * * * New conditions will cause more tractors to be bought 
and reduce chance of renting good farms. 

Mitchell County. — There are few farms in this county that will not produce 
enough cash crops for a living — but could make good living if they were equipped 
for livestock raising. These families will not save enough for farming operations 
after defense work is over, but most of them are catching up on old debts * * * 
present trend of conditions is making shortage of farms for rent and is increasing 
price of farms for sale. 

Bullock County. — It is the opinion of Farm Security Administration personnel 
that these families being employed off from home will have a tendency to decrease 
attendance of school children. Due to fact that borrower is not at home the 
work he ordinarily does will have to be done by some member of family. * * * 
In many cases, this will result in taking older boy out of school. * * * Fam- 
ilies being employed on defense projects will have very little bearing on decreasing 
the needs for future Farm Security Administration assistance * * * this 
increased fluctuating income has a tendency to create a spending standard that 
cannot be maintained when these families are forced to return to work on farm. 
In many cases they purchase second-hand automobiles (which are liabilities in 
most cases), radios and equipment they could do without. Tractors in this 
county are going to bring about very acute problem for low-income farm families 
as land they have been renting is being taken over by mechanized farming. 
* * * We have observed and firmly believe that more down-to-earth, sound 
and practical supervision is the future to Farm Security Administration, through 
understanding between Farm Security Administration and borrower as to aims 
of program. We are sold on long-term lease with improvements to be made 
between landlords and tenants. We feel more emphasis should be placed in 
livestock. * * * Under present change that is now in force it appears that 
tenant farmers will have a harder time in renting land than in past due to mecha- 
nized farming. 

Barrow County. — New conditions have made it impossible to secure long-term 
leases with a flexible clause. This is due mainly because the older landlords still 
remember the effect of the last World War on farm products and want to be in a 
position to take advantage of every increase in farm products. Then, too, they 
expect grain prices to soar within the next year or so. In this event several more 
families would be displaced by additional tractors and harvesters. I do not 
believe the average family would save money to help finance farm after the war. 
Land values have definitely increased * * *. Landlords are definitely try- 
ing to raise rent * * *. 

Pickens, Peach, and Houston Counties. — We have a shortage of farm labor in 
Pickens County, but I think it is a shortage of surplus labor which might be over- 
come to a great extent if better wages and more security on the job were offered. 
A few employers are willing to pay more if necessary to get workers. I have 
observed that farmers generally are realizing the seriousness of the persent crisis 
and the need for more food, etc., and therefore are pledging themselves to put 
forth a greater effort. Most of these defense jobs are temporary and defense 
workers will in time come back to the farm. A fairly large number of these 
families will dipose of their farm belongings when leaving the farm. I think 
that we as agricultural workers and farmers should pledge ourselves to do the 
best and most thorough job we have ever done * * *. Interviews disclosed 
that 500 persons are eligible to receive loans but who are not associated with this 
program. They agreed that the difficulty of finding farms was the major ob- 
stacle * * *. In Peach County in 1930 there were 785 farms, but now only 
433, although there is now more land in farms than in 1930 * * * This had 
resulted in the dispossession of a great number of tenant farmers and share- 


Lancaster County. — This county, being situated as it is, has not been affected 
with farm to farm movement. It has been affected mostlv by heads of families 
commuting day by day to jobs that are available in nearby towns. Therefore, 
they have been in touch with farming operations, inasmuch as thev have been at 
home at night and on week ends. There will be more difficulty in future in work- 
ing out a good tenure program with tenant and landlord. 


Charleston County. — We believe our Farm Security Administration clients in 
Charleston as a whole are sincere in their intentions to try to increase production 
of those items for home consumption and if possible some of those items that 
are needed to be increased on food-for-defense program, to be sold. Owing to 
the very unfavorable season in 1941 and poor prices of truck some of the heads 
or members of client families have secured temporary work to supplement small 
farm income. Their intention is to return to farms in time to begin operations 
for 1942. 

Lexington County. — On account of a number of clients working away from their 
farms and leaving farming operations to other members of their families the 
general attitude of landlords is to refuse to sign long-time leases. 

Saludi County. — (The following comment is interesting and significant, because 
the county has a remarkably developed plan of group activities. Does it show 
that a proper farm and rehabilitation program is the solution?) 

The tenure program in this county will remain about the same as the trend is 
for the farmers to stick to their farms. I feel that it is the duty of Farm 
Security Administration to impress upon these farmers the importance of sticking 
to their farms, of spending their money wisely, also our food-for-defense program. 
* * * These topics come up at group meetings. * * * these farmers 
feel that the farm furnishes more security to their families. 

Greenwood County. — I would suggest that the Government purchase land as a 
tenant-security program, improve housing and lease farms to tenants with 
options to buy. 

Georgetown County. — New conditions make landlords more interested in giving 
longer leases to good families. Most of the borrowers in Georgetown County 
who are working are employed in pulpwood cutting or as laborers on the con- 
struction of a highway. Most are on a temporary basis and have been obtained 
with the idea of earning money for subsistence during winter months since crops 
were so short during 1941 — no surplus left for winter. Farmers, as a whole, are 
deeply conscious of the greater need of food production and security offered by 
life on farm. Those who own land or can secure suitable arrangements have no 
desire to leave. 

McCormick County. — Suggest that if farm prices could be adjusted where young 
people would be attracted to the farm instead of away from the farm we would 
not have any trouble getting an abundance of farm produce. Also that a good 
farmer is a highly specialized producer and should receive for his produce an 
income comparing with other specialists. 

Chester County. — Believe we are going to have a much better tenure program 
in the future, changing from standard rent basis to a share basis. In our group 
meetings, and at every opportunity, we are telling these people of the present 
conditions and what the future is going to bring to the farmer. When cuts are 
made in mill workers the first to feel it are older men and less experienced ones, 
therefore the farmer will be out if he does not have a well producing farm to go 
back to. 

Aiken County. — Increased employment will tend to draw these people away 
from the farm at present and after the crisis, there will be a "back to the farm" 
movement and no land available. We are exerting every possible effort to show 
these families now employed off the farm that it will be to their advantage in 
the long run to remain tied to the farm and carry on farming operations more 
efficiently than ever before in order that they will be prepared for the readjust- 
ments that will have to be made after the war. 

Orangeburg County.— Through interrogation and otherwise, we have arrived at 
the conclusion that majority of landowners -will be disinclined to enter into long 
time lease agreements pending termination of the war, unless certain exceptions 
are written in, which exceptions would largely interrupt or prevent full material- 
ization of objectives sought after. 

Beaufort County. — I have talked to a great number of low-income farmers who 
are working on Parris Island, and I have also seen their farms, and I find they 
are not planting gardens or subsistence crops as in the past. I have also noticed 
increase of second-hand automobiles purchased by many of the defense workers, 
and I know many were sold under high-pressure salesmanship. I would like to 
suggest that some way be found to make these low-income farmers realize what 
will happen after the defense projects are over. 

Hampton County. — To build up land, have a payment set up in soil-building 
practices for ditching and draining land. 

Clarendon County.— It is our opinion that majority of farmers leaving farm to 
accept public works jobs will be more in need of Farm Security Administration 


assistance when jobs are finished * * * Opinion of prominent landowners 
in this county that there will be some increase in farm lands due to advanced 
prices in cotton and tobacco. There is an inclination on part of lowest income 
families to accept job at public works rather than earn living farming. Judging 
from past experience with clients some of lowest of group merely want to use our 
program as a stop-gap until they can get some job other than farming. The 
client, who is carrying out his farming policies and obligations as he agreed to do, 
prefers farming as means of livelihood rather than a public works job. It is our 
belief that these families who have quit farming to accept defense jobs will cer- 
tainly have to farm when defense work is over. In some communities in this 
countty, especially in areas where poor crops here have resulted due to crop dis- 
aster, lots of farm laborers are flocking to defense centers. Especially is this true 
among colored tenants. In lots of cases landowners cannot compete or offer the 
tenant what he can earn at present on defense projects or Work Projects Admin- 
istration. We believe if landowner or small farmer has a larger earning capacity 
that he would be able and willing to pay better wages and be more secure and 
better satisfied than having a job doing public works. Prevailing wage rates vary 
in different communities. Price paid to contract hands ranges from $2 to $3 per 
week with meal and meat furnished; also certain amount of land is furnished 
tenant for 7 months. After the contract is out day laborers are paid anywhere 
from 50 cents to $1 a day depending on ability of landowner to pay. In good 
many instances the loss .of labor * * * is doing away with lots of family 
farm homes. There just isn't enough land to go around for all tenants and when 
a farm family leaves the farm there is nothing left to do but for landowner to con- 
solidate this farm with his own and farm it with power machinery. Prices re- 
ceived by families for agricultural commodities will govern largely the effect of 
our present tenure system. When prices are high, there is tendency on part of 
large landowners to farm land for themselves and to eliminate small farmers. 

Oconee County. — Landlord will demand standing rent * * * land prices 
are rising because of speculation. Food and chattels are higher thereby making 
loans of a greater amount. Landlords are demanding higher rents because of 
higher prices. 

Union County. — The effect of client heads leaving the farm for other employ- 
ment and letting wives and young members operate same has resulted in farm 
failures * * * spend all'funds which they made in the mill and are not in 
much better condition than a year ago * * * new conditions will increase 

Lee County. — The loss of labor is breaking down family-type farm concept to 
a certain extent * * * but after defense work is over we expect to see a 
back-to-the-farm movement, expecially among younger people, providing prices 
are in line with operating expenses. 

Neioberry County.— The policy of Farm Security Administration to pay rent out 
of first income is having a good effect on landlords since we had a crop failure and 
where landlords had to waive rent to people borrowing money from other lend- 
ing agencies, the landlords have received no rent this year. Most landlords who 
have been working the land with sharecroppers are now making every effort to 
hold those croppers in same status for another year, hoping to work out some of 
the cropper's debt. 

Richland County —Land values have increased 20 percent as evidenced by high- 
er rents and higher option prices for farms to be purchased. * * * They wish 
to hold on to farm because they feel insecure in their defense jobs, but if their 
employment continues at currently prevailing rate, they will stay on the jobs 
* * * the tendency * * * of longer leases, is becoming popular as the 
difficulty of securing labor increases and the landlords and tenants both see 
advantage to them of a long-time lease. 

Jasper County. — We have a better chance now, due to world conditions, to get 
these low-income farmers to cooperate, "live-at-home," produce more livestock, 
etc., than we have ever had as they are anxious to do something for their country 
and they have a more receptive attitude toward new farming practices and are 
making every effort for the Nation. Therefore, I think it necessary that we 
make every effort possible to put our program over with these people now so 
that when war is over they will have learned to produce things at home which, 
in this county, they have never done before such as poultry, eggs, hogs, milk 
wheat for flour, etc., and it is going to be vitally necessary for their health and 
maybe existence. 


The Impact of National Defense on the Rural Planning and Resettle- 
ment Program of the Farm Security Administration 

The foregoing discussion has embraced the rural rehabilitation program of the 
Farm Security Administration in region 5 — this is, the program of assistance to 
individual farmers. Another division of Farm Security Administration activities 
is its rural planning or resettlement program, under which rural communities have 
been organized with planned, coordinated production and operation at 19 locali- 
ties in the four States. These planned communities are providing a means of 
studying how best to establish good farmers on good land. Because of their 
unified nature, they are building practical research into the fields of cooperative 
farming, adult education, rural life improvement, development of new and more 
effectual methods of production and marketing, etc. A questionnaire somewhat 
similar to that directed to county supervisors went out to the rural-project 
managers. Following is a summary of the findings: 

1. Generally, dwellers in rural-planning communities seem affected in less de- 
gree than individual farmers by the lure of defense employment. This is attrib- 
uted to the security created by sound planning and community organization. 

2. The departure of family heads to seek outside employment varied in propor- 
tion to the proximity of large defense projects. When these projects are close at 
hand, more persons leave to seize the windfall of cash wages. For example, 110 
family heads were reported as having left A.^hwood Plantation, which is close to 
the defense work atSumter and Columbia, S. C, Wilmington, N. C, and Augusta, 
Ga. But only 26 family heads went from Piedmont Homesteads and Briar Patch 
Farms in north central Georgia, only one from Wolf Creek Farms near Cair, in 
south Georgia. In almost every case, other members of the family remained 
behind to carry on. The Ashwood report bore this comment: 

"Some families have boys large enough to carry on the farm work, but those 
who do not have this help, we are trying to get the heads of the families to stay 
on the farm at least part of the time. We are contacting them at night and on 
Sundays to make farm plans and discuss other business." 

3. Like the county supervisors, most of the managers reporting were pessimistic 
as to the likelihood that the extra money earned will be saved to pay Farm Security 
Administration obligations or to finance operations after the emergency. Dis- 
tances to be traveled to the scene of employment require acquisition of automo- 
biles; and there is, besides, a tendency to spend money for food, clothing, and 
other things for which unsatisfied appetites had been acquired. 

Tenant Purchase Program 

One of the most hopeful enterprises in agricultural stabilization is the tenant 
purchase program under the Bankhead-Jones Act, which is administered by the 
Farm Security Administration. In the 4 States, 5,416 landless farmers have been 
helped to land ownership and about 2,300 more will be added to this number in 
the coming year. 

It is noteworthy that the program seems temporarily affected in spots (as to the 
number of applications for loans), not affected at all in other locations. The 
factor seems to be proximity to cities and large defense sites. The following 
observations from region 5's tenant purchase section throws some light on 

"At the Tenant Purchase Appraisal School held in Athens, Ga., in September 
last, the question was asked and a canvass was made of all assistant tenant 
purchase specialists representing the entire region as to the effect of the war and 
economic conditions on land prices. The reports were by no means uniform. It 
seems that in the areas where the largest activity has taken place, it is generally 
conceded that land prices are higher. On the other hand, we are buying a large 
subdivision tract in Georgia not far from Moultrie. We are getting a number 
of tracts for subdivision in the Albany area. We are also getting subdivisions 
satisfactorily in the other areas of the State. We have been offered tracts in and 
near the Spartanburg development. The prices in some instances seem rather 
high and in other instances they were about as usual. I believe individual farm 
prices have advanced, generally speaking, but I doubt if the larger plantations 
have advanced accordingly. Certainly there has been no uniformity. The 


feeling of vendors generally as to the kind of crop they have on the farms appar- 
ently has more to do with it than does the economic situation, and the war industry 
and national defense. 

"To illustrate, South Carolina where crops are hardest hit appears to be least 
affected by increased prices than in Alabama where the prices are poor. 

"The tenant purchase program is more seriously affected by increased cost of 
construction than any other single factor. Our average is about $200 to $400 
more than it was 2 years ago, and our average loans, in our judgment, will run 
about $300 to $400 higher than they did for the fiscal year 1940-41. We have 
had reports from appraisers that on this account they were having to throw out 
good farms that could be purchased economically but they would not support the 
building program and the prices therefor, that even now reach $2,500 or more, 
for a set of buildings on a tenant purchase farm. 

"The defense program in connection with tenant purchase is affecting old 
borrowers in the following ways: 

"(a) Favorably, in that prices for farm products are higher and they are paying 
off their loans and making satisfactory payments under the variable payment 
plan in getting ahead of schedule in many instances. This, however, is not by any 
means uniformly true on account of the spot crop situation this year, and even 
with higher prices, the man who has little or nothing to sell does not profit very 
materially from the higher prices. With anything like normal crops, payments 
are being made very very favorably, according to reports received from the field. 

"(b) A few borrowers are being affected unfavorably in the following ways: A 
few borrowers are leaving tenant purchase farms and going to other industries, even 
though they had been selected on the basis of desiring most completely to remain 
on the farm and pay for it over a long period of time. This is more marked in 
the new encumbrances than in the old borrowers. 

"The national defense program is affecting old borrowers in this way: In 
certain instances farms purchased the first year, and some since the first year, the 
oldest son in the family has gone into the Army and maybe more than one son 
has gone into the Army, and they find it necessary to have someone to help handle 
the farm under these circumstances. There is quite a demand on the part of 
certain borrowers affected in this manner, to purchase tractors and specific 
requests have been made in some places where this situation seems to be acute. 

"This appears to be caused by the farm labor situation apparently brought on 
by the national defense program. 

* "It is needless to say the land development on these old farms is likewise 
affected in that wire fencing and other needed farm tools are not easily obtained. 
Bailing wire for hay for tenant purchase farms, of course, has been a problem, 
but seems to have been solved lately. On the whole the increased prices that the 
tenant purchase borrowers are receiving have certainly increased the old borrowers' 
opportunities and made such borrower cognizant of his chance to pay for his 
farm or at least get ahead of schedule." 

Migration Problems of Farm Families Caused by Government Acquisition 
op Farm Land for Defense 

The preceding discussion was concerned with the indirect effects of national 
defense primarily on Farm Security Administration borrower farm families. The 
discuss ion in this section of the report relates to the direct impact of one phase of 
the national defense program on certain farm communities and farm families. 
The direct displacement of farm families and the resulting relocation problems 
created by Government acquisition of farm land are reviewed. 

The Department of Agriculture commissioned the Farm Security Administration 
to undertake a relocation program for farm families when expanding necessities 
of national defense brought about acquisition by the Government of approximately 
71u,000 acres of land in the 3 States of Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina. 
This land was necessary to expand existing Army posts, to establish new Army 
training centers, and to locate defense industry. 

The areas in wnich land was acquired by the Army or for defense industries, 
with the number of families living in them, and the acreage involved are as follows: 



Number of 


Fort McClellan, near Anniston 

Munitions loading plant— Childersburg 

Seibert Arsenal— Huntsville 

Basic Flying School— Tuskegee 


Camp Stewart— Hinesville 

Fort Benning— Columbus. 

Camp Gordon— Augusta 

Basic Flying Field— Macon 

South Carolina: 

Santee-Cooper— Moncks Corner 

Camp Jackson— Columbia 

Camp Croft— Spartanburg 

Basic Flying School— Sumter 





360, 000 
55, 000 

26, 000 
17, 000 

i No survey. 

On this land lived, in more or less insecurity, between 4, COO and 4,700 families 
comprising some 25,000 persons. An organized plan of relocation was devised — 
first, to assist the families to move; second, to help sustain them in the period 
between moving and restoration to normal life; third, to help them plan for an even 
better existence with higher standards. It was obvious that without this assist- 
ance to people ignorant, fearful, and penniless, there would have been havoc in 
thousands of cases. It was equally obvious that with this assistance it was possi- 
ble to stay a new migration, to tie the displaced thousands to the land with which 
alone they are familiar, to save them chaos, to direct them to stability, and to 
crystallize methods of doing the job which might serve in other situations easily to 
be foreseen in the post-war period. In short, to help these defense migrants 
start a new kind of farming in a new way, an end which is of enormous importance 
to the small farmer of the Southeast. The program, however, assumes an impor- 
tance far beyond the number of people directly affected. 

In the process of relocating displaced families who desired to stay on land and 
who were unable to make arrangements of their own, the Farm Security Adminis- 
tration set up in each of the 3 States a Relocation Corporation. 1 The 3 corpora- 
tions have acquired or have under option at this writing a total of 128,975 acres of 
land as follows: 


A total of 1,128 families were displaced by military requirements in Alabama 
as of December 1, 1941. The Alabama Relocation Corporation has acquired 
34,134 acres of land at the total option consideration of $668,472. The average 
per acre cost is $19.20. This land is acquired for relocation purposes of the 
families originally displaced and such families residing on the land when acquired, 
who desire to remain. This corporation has expended $190,947.72 for construc- 
tion (houses, barns, etc.) and $24,442 for land development. 


The new Georgia Army training centers and expansion of existing camps 
displaced 2,122 families from the immediate vicinities of the tracts requisitioned. 
The Hinesville Relocation Corporation, as of December 1, 1941, has acquired 
or optioned 68,994 acres at an option consideration of $819,156, or at an average 
cost of $11.87 per acre. These lands are requhed for the 2,122 families originally 
displaced from defense areas and some secondary displacements as well as families 
residing on the land when acquired who desire to remain. The Georgia Corpora- 
tion has spent $556,877 for construction and $47,217 for land development. 


This corporation handling the work in South Carolina, assists families from 
the Santee-Cooper Power Development, as well as from vacated lands required 
for military camps and training purposes. Palmetto Farms Relocation Corpora- 
tion, as of December 1, 1941, has acquired or has optioned 25,847 acres at an 
option consideration of $439,071. The average land cost per acre is $16.99. 

1 In Florida, which also is part of this region, this necessity has not yet arisen. 


These lands were required to provide 1,401 families from the above listed areas 
as well as secondary displacements of families residing on lands purchased. 
The corporation has expended $354,820 for construction and $30,780 for land 

Land Acquisition 

It was obvious that the relocation of displaced families on a sound basis could 
be achieved only through acquisition and development of tracts of land suffi- 
ciently large and well-disposed to make possible planning and development of 
profitable and varied forms of operation. As noted the three relocation corpora- 
tions have purchased 128,975 acres of land scattered through the area (see map — 
exhibits) . 

This land was assembled by purchase of numerous parcels. In the case of 
original army land acquisition, many hundreds of small owners, mostly absentee 
owners, represented the sellers; on the other hand, old plantation holders and 
financial institutions were the sellers when it came to acquiring land for relocation 
of the displaced families. For example, in the acquisition of a typical area of 
relocation land in Terrell County, Ga., where 17 tracts were bought to make up 
11,680 acres, a cotton oil company, a large bank in Atlanta, the Federal land bank, 
and life insurance companies were among sellers. 

Land purchases by the relocation corporation are made on the old-time basis 
of "willing buyer-willing seller." Prices are determined by the use value and the 
capacity of the tracts to support not only the families brought in from defense 
areas but also those living on the lands who want to remain. While much of the 
land acquired came from owners in distress or nearly so, no advantage was taken 
of their situation. A fair price was given, based on local conditions, standards, 
and use values. 

Where crops were standing or involved, owners and tenants were allowed to 
complete their operations. Outstanding rental agreements were adjusted and 
allowances were made for improvements. The values were established by ap- 
praisers who averaged 10 years or more of experience with the Federal land bank or 
comparable institutions, plus general experience in this field in connection with 
the Farm Security Administration program. This made possible sound purchases 
and minimized the paying of inflated prices. Speed in making investigation of 
title and payment was a large consideration. Exhibits appended to the report 
show a list of land purchases made by the three relocation corporations. Also, 
appended are case histories of families displaced by Government acquisition of 
the farm land on which they resided. 

In selection of land for option the relocation corporations rest on the fertility 
of the soils, the capacity of the land to support the necessary number of families, 
and the interests of families living on the land at time of purchase or lease. The 
relocation corporations were developed with a view of retaining as far as possible 
all the features of private operation and ownership. The corporations are of an 
emergency character and, as far as the Farm Security Administration is con- 
cerned, to a large extent temporary in nature. They are intended to be self- 
liquidating, looking to ultimate private ownership of individual farm units. 

Corporation surveys the need and estimates the costs in its territory. It obtains 
money for relocation work from the Farm Security Administration, which in turn 
obtains Reconstruction Finance Corporation funds. This money is held available 
for loans. As a tract is obtained and improved, a mortgage is placed on it as 
security; the unexpended amount of the loan remains on deposit until it is re- 
quired. Every safeguard is provided for the Government's interest. 

Until the investment is liquidated, the relocation corporation dissolved, and'a 
state of private ownership resumed, the corporation assumes all duties of landlord, 
forms cooperative associations, and engages in various enterprises required to 
afford a means of proper existence for the families involved. It seeks to reduce or 
to avoid secondary displacement of families in the area over which it has control 
by considering carefully the needs and desires of families on the land which it 
buys. After interview, those families found capable of fitting into the new 
economy devised for the lands are retained where they are. Others who may 
have qualifications to fit other forms of operation planned or already in effect 
elsewhere, are aided to find other locations. It was found, for example, that 
on a tract of 11,680 acres acquired for relocation in Terrell County, Ga., 43 of the 
88 families living on this land probably will be kept there. 

Problems developed at the start. Process of acquiring land for the Army was 
smooth and well-ordered in some areas, less well-organized in others, with con- 
sequent disturbance and inconvenience or lack of them suffered by tenants and 


owners. In the Childersburg area, 1 for example, there have been more than 
occasional resort to litigation. There was not settled policy as to payment for 
crops which were destroyed or left unharvested when farmers were forced to move 
in midsummer. There were numerous cases of slowness in payment, forcing 
those who desired to buy land elsewhere to resort to time payments and the 
necessity of paying interest when, with their purchase checks in hand, they might 
have avoided this charge. 

A steady improvement was noted as the program proceeded. A recent memo- 
randum of the War Department sets out a careful procedure to be followed to take 
care of all claims— those of renters, tenants, and sharecroppers, as well as owners, 
as to crops unharvested at the same time. All the delays in payment, however, 
are not attributable to the faulty machinery of purchase. Often they were due 
to congestion of record rooms in court houses where suddenly it was necessary to 
examine an extraordinary number of titles; often, to an inadequate number of 
title examiners. Ignorance, suspicion, or resentment of the sellers occasionally 
heightened the trouble. It was found now and then that owners, having paid off 
mortgages years ago, had not been aware of the necessity of having the record of 
debt canceled. Many humble owners are naturally adverse to signing papers, 
and sale agreements occasionally were hard to get. Anybody aware of the habits, 
temperaments, fears, and congenital suspicions of the uneducated small farmer 
will understand how all these factors contributed to difficulties. Naturally, the 
task of workers commissioned to do the relocation job was made heavier by all 
these considerations, and the immediate necessities of the displaced families were 

Early in the emergency — the latter part of 1940 — it was recognized that there 
would be many families requiring help, and preliminary studies were made from 
offices set up in the first of the affected areas to learn the extent of the need and 
the nature of practical relocation enterprises. Later, when the distress of these 
families became evident, the relocation organizations were set up by Farm Se- 
curity Administration and set to work. An extensive organization was un- 
necessary. The flexible nature of the farm security program made possible the 
assignment of employees already in the ranks and experienced in the general 
plan and philosophy of rehabilitation. The relocation staff, thus recruited, set 
to work classifying the families to be moved, as a guide to action. Broadly, 
these groups were classified as follows: 

1. Families which could make their own plans and which required no assist- 
ance other than advisory services. 

2. Families which located farm lands outside of the area and which required 
only financial assistance in transporting possessions. 

3. Families which required relocation assistance, transportation grants and 
limited subsistence aid to make the new start. 

4. Families which required complete assistance, and which appeared accept- 
able for rehabilitation services. 

5. Families which did not qualify as agricultural workers and which required 
some economy affording wages in addition to subsistence farming. 

6. Families which desired to follow public works, employed or seeking employ- 
ment at construction of the project. 

7. A few individuals and families handicapped or certified as relief cases only. 
Most families were found to be on the lowest existence levels with hand to 

mouth expectancies and experiences. To enable the most impoverished of these 
to move, it was necessary to make 3,071 grants for a total of $152,321, or an aver- 
age of $50.60. 

It was found necessary to make plans -under which these relocated families 
could make an adequate living — a living, indeed, more satisfactory than that 
which had brought them to the condition of helplessness. 

The family which worked at odd jobs, tilling a few acres in a haphazard manner, 
and augmenting earnings through scouring the woods for sassafras roots, picking 
dallas grass seed, trapping coons and skunks, snaring fish in baskets, and poaching 
on game reservations, etc., could not be dumped into another community with the 
expectation that the resourcefulness of the family would enable it to get by. 
Families displaced were of varying qualifications, and could not be aided in a 
standardized manner. 

The "born farmers" of the relocated thousands stuck stubbornly to the land, 

and were aided in doing so by the offices of the Farm Security Administration. 

The programs are built to conform to their needs and experiences, and vary from 

individual grants and Rural Rehabilitation loans to establishment of cooperative 

1 See Appendix, case histories. 


farms. The idea is to place them as much as possible in climes and on terrain 
with which they are familiar, preferably not too distant from their old homes, 
from centers of trade and custom, from political and social institutions, with 
which they are familiar. 

Examples of land acquired and relocation prospects in region V are appended 
to this report, describing operations in special areas. How a cooperative general 
farm was set up on an old plantation in South Carolina for displaced families of 
Santee-Cooper; how an interesting and significant experiment in group rehabilita- 
tion was undertaken in the Hinesville-Hazelhurst area; how efforts are made to 
fit displaced individuals of the Fort Benning area into nearby farms. 

In all cases the standard services of Farm Security Administration are applied 
to the task — group medical care, sanitation, community and cooperative services, 
including membership in purchasing and marketing associations, development of 
farm and home plans designed to give a better balance between subsistence and 
cash crops than the families generally knew before, direction in home living and 
food preservation, development of new cash crops and financial help, as well as 
instruction in utilizing new materials and new methods. A device which Farm 
Security Administration has found of great promise in relocating displaced fam- 
ilies, and which may be used in solving defense migration, is the leasing cooperative. 

The development of the tracts in itself offers means of giving employment to 
the new sectlers outside of their farming operations. 

Generally speaking the farm plans involved change from the old usually worn- 
out economies with emphasis on livestock, soil conservation, forestry practices, 
and development of new cash crops. Examples of plans worked out for resettling 
displaced families follow: 


A total of 12,485 acres of land comprising 13 tracts of land in Terrell County 
and 6 tracts of land in Lee County, have been acquired to provide the develop- 
ment of 145 to 150 economic farm units for families principally displaced by the 
expansion of Fort Benning. 

The farms will average 65 to 100 acres in size and will have all improvements 
such as dwellings, barns, poultry, and smoke houses, sanitary units, and good 
water supply. Garden and chicken runs will be fenced. 

Each unit will have a permanent pasture and combination woods pasture where 
supplemental incomes may be secured from forestry operations. Forty acres of 
developed and terraced croplands will provide cotton, corn, peanuts, as well as 
subsistence crops and feed crops for a supplemental livestock program for each 

Forty-three of the families originally residing on the lands will remain, and 
approximately 100 families from the lands vacated near Fort Benning will be 
established on the other units. 

Forty-five families, originally residing on the land will move to other areas, 27 
of these will continue public works, and reside in the neighboring villages; 11 have 
arrangements with other farm operators in the area; and 3 families receiving public 
welfare support will move to other dwellings. Four families will move with the 
former operators of the farms. 


Another illustration is found in relocation plans for a tract in Richland County, 
comprised of 5 contiguous farms and set up as a cooperative enterprise (Wateree 
Plantations, Inc.) for approximately 50 Negro families. 

Development will provide buildings costing approximately $122,000 and 
equipment, supplies, etc., bringing the total investment to $250,000. 

Fifteen of the thirty-three families on the land when purchased will remain and 
participate in the new economy; approximately 35 families displaced from the 
Santee-Cooper power development will complete the family relocations. 

Of the 33 families originally on the land, 15 were renters, 7 sharecroppers, 9 
day laborers, and 2 public welfare cases. Four of the laborers, 2 sharecroppers 
will go with the former operators of these lands. Ten families will be established 
on 2-horse farms in other tracts owned by the corporation nearby. Two families 
will be accepted by the welfare facility and will be established elsewhere. 

The Wateree Plantation, Inc., will purchase and own the livestock, machinery, 
and equipment and will meet all operating expenses. The resident-members will 
receive wages totaling about $300 per annum per family in addition to proceeds 



they may obtain from their subsistence units, with necessary dwellings, out- 
buildings, poultry houses, gardens, etc. With seasonable work in the commu- 
nity undertakings and leased forests the families should have employment for 300 
days each year. 

With a diversified farm program under supervision, the members of this group 
will learn better farming methods and how to live as citizens and participating 
members of an enterprise which is planned to lead to private farm and home 

Appendix C. Review of Land Areas Acquired by the Government for 
Defense, Etc. 

From all appearances the 40,000 acres of land taken for the Seibert arsenal 
project (a chemical munitions plant) was above the average farming land in this 
rich, high-cotton-producing Tennessee Valley section. In the middle of it were 
two small communities of Negro landowners — family groups owning up to 1,000 
acres. "Pond Beat" and "Sand Flat" have been known throughout Alabama as 
rather lonely examples of successful Negro community life and of prospering, 
continuous farming, with property passed from father to son. Children from 
these Negro families (see case histories, appendix) have helped to build up Alabama 
State Normal (Negro college just outside Huntsville), and have formed the bulk 
of a small but very stable Negro middle-class group in Huntsville, supporting 
themselves as school teachers, small businessmen, waiters in the Russell Erskine 
Hotel, etc. 

Save for these communities, the 40,000 acres was one of very large farms, 
many of them operated by people living in town, or by their managers. Tractors 
and day laborers were fast displacing the old renter or sharecropper system. 

In a county where 32.6 percent of the farmers are Negro (1940 census) this 
could hardly be a typical section, for nearly three-fourths of the families found 
in this area were Negro. In other respects it highlights the agricultural trends, 
that have been taking place in Madison County in the past 10 years. 

Briefly, these trends are: 

1. Displacement of mules and tenants by tractors and day laborers. 

Total farmers in county 

1930 7>m 

1935 7) 034 

1940 5,187 

or a net decrease of 1,991 farmers, approximately 28 percent. 1 

No figures on the increased number of tractors are immediately available but 
county agent, Farm Security supervisor, and merchants in Huntsville tell of a 
great increase. 

(Of the 477 families included in the tabular report from the area, 344 were 
making their living from agriculture. Of this number the heads of 131 families, 
or 30 percent, were classed as farm laborers. This does not give the complete 
story, for many older children of tenants or small owners were day hands. 

2. The decrease in number of farmers in Madison County is much greater 
among the Negroes than among the whites. 


farmers in 



farmers in 





2, 772- 

1934 . 





In 1930 Negroes operated 38.6 percent of the farms. In 1940 they operated 
32.6 percent of the farms. How many of these went to town, and how many 
simply becam e day laborers it is difficult to determine. 

1 The Tennessee Valley Authority development took several thousand. acres out of production hi 1935, 



3. Farms in Madison County are getting larger, and more land is being put 

nto pastures. 

Size of 



60. 1 

■id in 

1939 37,579 

1934 30,615 

1929 21. 9°° 

4. As to percentage of land operated by tenants, the following figures aro, 
perhaps, a clearer statement of the shift to day labor than to ownership. 


Percent of 

N nber 
oi .arms 






Increase, full owners, 62. 
Decrease, number of farms, 2.991. 

Note, now, the following table of figures on families on this 40,000-ac-e tract. 
This project obviously has displaced a large body of people who have little or 
nothing to live on, who are almost totally unsuited to urban life, who have nothing 
to offer in the labor market there except muscles used to tedious work and stomachs 
used to doing without. 

Survey classification, Hinlsville, Aug. 15, 1941 



Classification as to status: 

1. Owner 

2. Farm manager - 











8. Other 



Classification as to occupation: 






4. Other 



Classification as to financial means: 



• 3 




i Total, 9. 
2 Total, 17. 

Note.— Twenty-nine families surveyed after this classification was made are not included in these figures. 

For most of these families making a living has been particularly difficult. The 
four-bits-an-hour paid common laborers in the construction job seem like great 
riches to them. Even the $1.50 to $2 a day many of them are getting as extra 
help around the coal yards, factories, and stores of booming Huntsville seems too 
good to be true. Of the approximately 120 families moved to date, more than 
a third of them have moved to town, and the supervisors expect that an even 
larger percentage will follow them. Still others have rented houses in the county 
but not farm land, because the heavy migration of construction workers to 
Huntsville has made it difficult to find houses. 

When the big construction job got under way this summer Mr. Lynn, Farm 
Security Administration supervisor for Madison Countv, held meetings with all 
the 508 rehabilitation borrowers and 77 tenant-purchase borrowers to talk the 


situation over. He pointed out the temporary nature of the work and told them 
the- must complete their crops for the next year if they hoped ever to get help 
; rfroi:. -m Security again. Farm Security did want them to get as much benefit 
from v . ^xtra work as possible, so long as their regular farming operations were 
not disturbed, and would do everything it could to help them get employment. 

Less than a dozen of those actively working with the Farm Security program 
"turned in their mules" before crop season was over, though many crops were 
storked with "short hands", women, younger children, etc. Several crops were 
destroyed by construction work before they could be harvested. 

As for people living in the area taken, Farm Security's labor relation specialist, 
Ton Elder, made arrangements with the contractors and the unions, having 
agre nents with them to employ one person out of each family, on recommenda- 
tion "i'om the Farm Security office, leaving the others to finish up the crop and 
make arrangements for moving. By mid November more than 350 of the 
approximately r> 00 families forced to move had one member working on the job. 

Higher farm prices, Lynn said, are threatening to displace as many tenant 
£arn is has the defense plant. Community cooperative organization has been 
discoi i ring be.cause so many of the borrowers report that they are having 
to m A good many have not been able to find land for next year. 

Largt le farmers who have been renting out most of their land to croppers on a 
"cotton rent" basis are now planning to work the land themselves, using tractors 
and day laborers. With the construction job offering an immediate solution to 
the problem of getting something to eat, a good many of these farmers are showing 
no eagerness to try fighting it out again on the poorer, back-hill acres they must 
move to. 

Workers who have come into Madison County for work on the construction job 
are competing with farmers for houses. Often, Lynn said, a man is able to rent 
just the house for more than he f orraerly , got for the house and farm. Some 
larger tracts of land are available for rent but are of little help to the average 
tenant because there are no houses on the land. 

Farm Security has tried to help this situation in two ways: 

1. By securing, through the Alabama Relocation Corporation, a nunber of 
large farms in Madison and adjoining counties and subdividing them and building 
houses so displaced families may find a permanent home. 

2. On the edge of the condemned area ID. prefabricated houses have been set up. 
These were filled almost immediately after- they were completed, early in the fall, 
with Negro families from the area. As these families find places to move, others 
move in. The difficulty is that many more houses are needed, Lynn said. 

. New applications for regular rehabilits-ion assistance are coming from some 
people who are moving out of the area. Lynn expects many more of these to 
come in after the work is over. 

"Most of them have had some white man — a landlord or a merchant — in that 
section whom they had known all their lives to look after them. Now they are 
going to have to find someone else to look to, and I expect it will be the Govern- 

There has been a great deal of interest among tenants in Madison County in 
the tenant-purchase program. Tenani s see how many of their group are being 
displaced by tractors, or are being for.-^d to pay higher cash rents, Lynn said. 
Most of the white tenant population have land-owning relatives in the hills of 
southeast Tennessee or the northern part of the county and the desire is still 
strong in them. Among the Negroes the examples set by Negro farmers in "Palm 
Beat" have stimulated interest. The program has been slowed down, and in the 
next year or so it may have to be halted because of the rising price of good land. 
Many eligible applicants (there were more than 500 during the first few months 
of 1941) have become discouraged because land prices have gone up so much they 
can find land within the Tarver amendment limits only in odd corners of the 
county far from their home communities. 

Some of the larger farm operators in the arsenal area are buying or leasing land 
elsewhere and taking their tenants with them. For example, T. R Ivey, who 
owned between three and four hundred acres in the area (a place he bought when 
Tennessee Valley Authority took his land 6 years ago) thinks he can take care 
of his two tenant families. He is renting about 700 acres and plans to use tractors 
almost exclusively. What will happen to the people now farming this rented 
place it was not possible to discover. Here we get a glimpse of the problem, yet 
incalculable, of "secondary displacement." 

Sam Harris, a tenant-purchase committeeman who owned considerable land in 
the area, has bought a 772-acre farm from Fleming S. Thornton, a larger-scale 
60396 — 42— pt. 32 9 



farming corporation in Huntsville. Harris paid $50 an acre for the place, almost 
twice as much, according to report, as what it could have been bought for 4 years 
ago. Harris plans to keep all five wage hands' families on this land and to work it 
with his three tractors. One of the tenants on the place is moving to a farm he is 
buying through the tenant-purchase program very shortly. Another family is 
moving to town. 

In this case, then, only one family is being displaced, but the landlord is not 
able to take care of any of his former hands. 

Nine tenant-purchase borrowers lived in the area taken over, one white and 
eight colored. Five of the negro families are being reheated on a 315-acre tract 
bought for this purpose early in the fall. The land has been operated for the past 
several years by a renter, who worked it with a tractor and four families of wage 
hands, making enough cotton to establish a base of over 300 pounds to the acre 
and an allotment of 82 acres. Over 300 of the 315 acres are in cultivation. This 
operator has rented a large place in Jackson County and says he is going to take 
the four families with him. One (of the displaced tenant-purchase families) has 
already moved onto the farm, and is living in the house formerly occupied by the 
white operator. 


Late in November of 1940 information was given out that some 27,CC0 acres of 
land in Talladega County bordering the Coosa River north and west of the small 
town of Childersburg (515 population in the 1940 census) were to be taken as site 
for a powder plant. The location was tentatively outlined in January and agri- 
cultural agencies, both Farm Security and Extension workers, were set to work 
warning people to vacate this property. 

Because no certain information as to the location of boundaries could be 
obtained, the actual work of relocations did not get under way until the last of 
January and February. By the time Farm Security had made its original survey 
(see report below) a good number of families had moved, both from the area 
finally taken and from land around it. After this survey had been made, and 
after 80-odd families had been moved from land finally not included in the area, 
an accurate boundary line was established. While no official confirmation was 
made of the original territory marked out on maps used in the area, all indications 
pointed so clearly to its being taken that farmers in this territory decided to 
move while there was still time to find a new place, and to make another crop. 

The section of land finally taken was one containing much river land. Some of 
this 14,000 acres was good farm land, ideal for large farm operations. Most of 
it was poor, carelessly operated by Negro tenants, or lying out. Of the farm 
operators, almost 30 percent were receiving Farm Security aid. 

The following table gives population analysis in the 27,000 acres originally 
staked out. When the fnal area was chesen, 210 rather than 321 families were 
displaced. However, this table shows in a general way the situation in the whole 




















Squatters ... . 








Total, 321 families; Farm Security Administration, 76 families; 73 percent negroes; 27 percent white. 

The survey revealed that the area contains very few owners who will be finan- 
cially able to relocate without some assistance. The number of cash renters, 
sharecroppers, and cotton renters, constitute the largest group in this area. 



The 1940 census report furnishes a broader idea of the situation. From it 
conies basis for the following analysis: 

1. Number of farms has decreased, due in part, to the switch to tractors and 
day labor. 










771 or reduction of 13 percent. 

This decrease has been greater among Negroes than whites. In 1930 Negroes 
made up 48 percent of all farm operators; in 1940, 39.2 percent. 
2. Following figures on tenancy reflect the above-mentioned trend: 

of owners 

Percent of 

of farms 

1940 - 





72! 8 




Farms are getting larger and more land is being put into pastures 

Size of 

Acres in 

1940. .. 


22, 403 
14, 201 



Note these things: While 39.2 percent of Talladega County's total number of 
farm operators are colored, 72.3 percent of the farm operators in this section were 
colored. Note also the comparatively large number of Negro landowners. In 
the county 22.3 percent of the Negro operators are landowners. In this section 
almost 32 percent were landowners. 

In other words, about one-fifth of all Negro farm owners in Talladega County 
were in this section. Their holdings were small. The bulk of the land was 
owned in large tracts either by white resident operators or absentees. 
_ The comparatively small number of nonfarm workers is significant, especially 
since so many of these displaced families have gotten their first taste of "public 
works money" at the powder plant. Will they want to go back to this kind of 
marginal living again? 

This was a section of old plantation holdings that had gradually (with some 
notable exceptions) been abandoned or partially abandoned by the old families 
who held on to them. In it, along the river and in the low places, were a few 
very small communities of Negro landowners who supplemented their farming 
income with fishing, hunting, and working for white men who came to enjoy these 

The average of all grants for moving totaled $37.50, which again reveals how 
little these people had to move. 

Here, then, is a group of dislocated people who know almost nothing except 
farming, and of that the cruder kind. About 30 percent were receiving aid from 
Farm Security already. Some few of these were making a new beginning and, 
where they could get some of the better land, were succeeding on a very moderate 
scale. Some few were making a fair living from the game and sportsmen, whom 
the very desolation of the place had brought to the area. Only a few are going 
to make alone the readjustments life in a new place will call for. 

Of general conditions touching on the Farm Security Administration program 
there, E. E. Wilson, county supervisor for Talladega Countv, reported orally on 
November 19: 

Farm Security Administration case load for the county is 220, of which 131 
(68 percent) are Negroes — an unusually high percentage, considering the fact that 



well over half the farming population is white. Few applications for next year 
have come in. The county supervisor expects many to come in during the next 
few weeks, because the powder plant job is "turning off" men at the rate of 300 
to 600 a week. The full tide of applications will not come, he said, until late 
February, when many farmers (especially Negroes) who have had their first 
taste of public works wealth will suddenly realize there is little hope of getting 
more such work and will want to farm again. Farm Security will, he said, get 
more than its share of these people because they have broken their relations 
with their old landlords, sometimes without ceremony, and in the middle of 
crop season, and will not be able — or will not want to — go back again. 

About 90 percent of the Farm Security Administration borrowers have gotten 
at least a few weeks of work on the project. He knew of only two who had paid 
back loans with defense-earned money (one paid $150, another $250). The rest 
have wasted some of the money. But not as much as people think. We've had 
practically a crop failure in here for the past 3 years. These people have gone 
without, all that time. They've had other debts and they've had to buy clothes 
and something to eat and some of the other people they've owed (furnish mer- 
chants) have put the kind of pressure on them we can't. 

Co-op organization has been very slow. Out of 20 proposed neighborhood 
organizations, only 9 have been formed. At some places as many as three meet- 
ings have been held, with but two or three couples present. 


The first part of the relocation job here, in which 403 families are involved, 
has been carried out. 

The 36,640 acres in Calhoun County taken for the enlargement of Fort Mc- 
Clellan and for the building of an ammunition dump have been cleared. These 
families have found somewhere to go, even though temporary in many cases. 

Calhoun is an industrial county. Iron pipe shops, ca ting works, chemical 
plants, textile mills, and a great number of smaller manufacturing establishments 
are found in Anniston, its county seat and principal town. Even before the 
defense program started it was a growing town. Most of the new workers in 
its industries came from nearby farming sections. Many of them remained 
there, commuting to town while the old folks kept the farm going. Others simply 
rented their land or let it lie out. A number of the landless families moved in 
close to town and rented small house;- on the city's outskirts. 

When the defense boom started in Anniston — increased production in the fac- 
tories; a big construction job on the Fort McClellan extension; an ammunition 
dump to be built; many thousands of soldiers to entertain and hundreds of 
officers and their families to provide houses for — this trend was accelerated. 

Part of this migration was voluntary, for crops have been poor in this valley 
for the past few years. Part of it was encouraged by a sharp trend to large-scale 
farming, with tractors and day laborers substituting for mules and croppers. 
This has been especially true in certain sections. Most of the land taken in the 
area formed a section of small semi-independent farmers, many of whom has lost 
their land. 

Our study of 342 families living in the area originally surveyed showed only 
102 had title to any land. Most of these farms were heavily mortgaged. In 
addition there were the usual group of relief, squatter, "marginal" families found 
around cities. Probably not more than half the group depended entirely on 
farming for a living. On the other hand, well over three-fourths of them 
depended on farming or gardening for at least a part of their living. 

In general, then, this area reflects the conditions found in most Piedmont 
farming sections in the southeast near industrial centers and where small farms 
have been the predominant pattern. 

A preliminary survey on 342 families shows the following: 




Share rent 

Sharecroppers, halves 

Farm laborers 

Industrial workers- .. 






















S(|iiat ters 


Work Projects Admin 

Other relief 


Total -. 






Something of the problems involved in enforced migration of a group so varied 
in make-up, standards, and resources was stated by H. K. Payne, who was in 
charge of the relocation activity at this point, in a report of January 25, 1941 
(at the beginning of the undertaking). He said: 

"Less than one-third of this group are landowners and most of these have 
farms that are heavily mortgaged, which leaves them with very little equity in 
the place. The Soil Conservation is doing the appraising work and is negotiating 
for the land; however, it is my understanding that they are not paying these 
people anything except for the actual market value of the farm. No provision 
is made for losses caused by the forced move; however, some of these better 
farmers are finding farms which they can purchase or lease somewhere within a 
radius of 40 or 50 miles. Strange as it may seem, this sometimes complicates 
the problem, as these better farmers displace other tenants who are now occupying 
the farms they are leasing and purchasing. The displaced farmers fall in the 
same group as those sharecroppers and renters who are occupying the land 
comprising the defense area." 

Reconsider these figures, now, in the light of general agricultural trends in 
Calhoun County during the 1930-40 decade. 

of farms 



Size of 









Decrease 303, or 12 percent less. 
15.1 (size of farms). 

Decrease 183, or 7 percent less (white); 180, or 39 percent less (colored). 

Farms are becoming fewer and larger. The decrease is coming most rapidly in 
the Negro group. In 1930 they made up 15 percent of all farm operators. In 
1940 they made up 10.4 percent A good many of these may have gone into the 
farm-labor group. 

Full own- 


Full white 

Full colored 










1 Increase 109. 

Note.— 55 percent of the whites and 75 percent of the colored farmers were tenants in 1940. 
There has been an increase in the number of farm owners, despite the decrease in farms over the 10-year 

It has been difficult to determine just what has happened to all these families, 
but the following tabulation, made on September 6, 1941, gives an idea of trends: 

Families who have moved to rented houses with no land attached 205 

Families who have moved to purchased houses with no land attached 23 

Total : 228 

Number who have purchased farms ' 58 

Number who have leased farms 109 

Total 167 

Eight families have moved to corporation farms. 

In other words, more than 56 percent of the total group did not move where 
they could make a crop or a garden during the 1941 season. 

Since that time 29 additional families have found places on farms operated by 
the Alabama Relocation Corporation, and 63 more family units are being set up 
for still others (a total of 100). These latter units will take care of some farmers 
from the group who have temporary homes and work in or around Anniston. 
How they have fared, and will fare during the transition, can be judged only hap- 
hazardly from case histories (see appendix) . It is certain that : 


1. They have had to compete with defense workers migrating from other places 
for houses, both in Anniston and in the county around. 

2. They are having to spend most of their new income — if they are fortunate 
enough to get jobs on defense projects — to meet the higher living costs. 

3. Land prices have risen so that few of the owners have been able to buy houses 
or farms equal to those they had before. 

4. Less than half those who made their living from agriculture are engaged in 
that work this year. With little or no training for any other kind of work, they 
will almost certainly be looking for aid in getting back to the farm when their 
temporary jobs on defense construction work are over. 

5. No doubt a good many of the younger people will be able to make successful 
adjustment to city life and will find opportunities to gain skill in industrial work. 

Most of the farms set up so far by the relocation corporation call for small-scale 
dairying, the growing of truck crops, poultry, and other things besides cotton. 
Already it has been found that many of the farmers who have come to it for aid 
are not able, or are most reluctant to change over from their old style cotton, corn, 
and victuals style of farming. For example, all except 2 of a group of 20 farmers 
who made crops on the "Brick Store Farm," a large unit being developed as a 
dairy farm, are going to move this fall because they aren't able to fit into the 
program of farming this will call for. Some of these families were on the land 
when the relocation corporation bought it. Others had been tenants in the 
condemned area. All had been cotton and corn farmers. 

Some of them don't have the amount of labor in their families the full farm 
program of this set-up calls for. Some aren't physically able to carry it- on. 
Some are just unwilling to try. Yet a return to the old style of farming is not 
only economically unsound and wasteful of resources, but also would not serve 
the good purpose of stimulating more intelligent farming methods that it is hoped 
these corporation farms will. Some of the 20 families have gone out and found 
themselves "crops." The majority will move to other farms set up by the cor- 
poration where the growing of feed, truck, and chickens will supplement cotton 
production, and a more general change in cropping practices will be attempted. 


Relocation work in the Hinesville area has been going on for well over a year 
now. Though rumor had been current for several months, no map of the area 
to be taken was published until January. This outlined 215,000 acres in a "first 
priority" to be taken immediately, and additional land, to form a total area of 
360,000 acres, for ultimate occupancy. Since that time a good many changes have 
been made in lines, but the area has remained about the same size. All families 
living in the first priority have been moved, and a good many of the others — a total 
of about 1,000 families. Approximately 500 more families have been given notice 
to move by January 1942. 

The 360,000 acres spread over five counties — one-half of Liberty, a large slice 
of Long, and parts of Bryan, Tattnall, and Chatham. Though there were good 
farming sections running through the area, and on its edges, the bulk of the land 
was in swamps, piney woods, wilderness or turpentine groves, all of it serving as 
open range for scrub cattle and razorback hogs. Much of it was owned in large 
tracts by turpentine operators or lumber companies. 

The inhabitants were of several groups, evenly divided between the races. 
About half of the white group were small owners. While their total acreage 
often was higher than would be classed as "small" for Georgia, as a whole, the 
small amount of cleared land and the low productivity put them in this class. 
They made a reasonably good living on cotton, tobacco and cattle kept on open 
range. The other half of the whites were renters, sharecroppers or squatters, 
most of them doing a little farming but getting the bulk of their living from work 
in turpentining, sawmilling, hunting, running cattle on open range, and illicit 

There were as many resident landowners among the Negroes as among tne 
whites. Like so many Negroes along the South Carolina low country and in the 
Georgia coastal counties, some of these worked land that had been in their families 
since Reconstruction. Often no will had been made out, and the 15 or 20 acres 
would belong to two dozen heirs, scattered from Savannah to Detroit. A few 
Negro family leaders hold as much as 100 acres, and had several families of rela- 
tives working around them. This group, as well as the landless half of the 
Negroes, made most of their living by combining subsistence farming with saw- 
milling, turpentining, keeping cattle on open range, and doing day work foi 
larger operators. 


It had not been hard to make some kind of a living in this country — with 240 
acres per family there could be game and fish for all. The open range made 
raising hogs for home use and scrawny beef cattle enough to sell for shoes and 
clothes a relatively simple matter. It was a marginal, almost wild kind of life 
for some. They lived in shacks back so far in the forest that several hundred 
families were missed in the original survey, though local folk did most of the work. 

But things were closing in on the people of this area even before the bombing 
base was announced. Lumber work was getting scarce, and turpentining work 
was less plentiful, (both have since been spurred by defense prices). More of the 
land was being bought up by pulp paper companies. Fire, lands posted for 
hunting preserves by groups from Savannah, and the cutting over of large sec- 
tions reduced the chances of making extra money by hunting or raising cattle 
on open range. The small owners, both white and Negroes, clung to their land. 
For the latter group the alternative was to join gangs of turpentine workers, 
travel with them, and live in their villages. Practically the only escape was to 
be "sold" (for the amount of the debt) to some other turpentine operator. Thus, 
landownership — just a place to live and make a garden — was often synonymous 
with freedom. 

In the Federal Emergency Relief Administration relief days a great deal of 
money was distributed in these counties, most of it in the form of grants. Attempts 
to start farming programs failed, and when the first priority area was surveyed in 
1941, only 4 of the 713 families interviewed were Farm Security borrowers. In 
the whole area the total will not be more than 20. 

"The reason for this," explained L. R. Payne, assistant relocation supervisor 
who has been in Hinesville since the beginning of the work, "is that our program 
has not until recently been studied with a view of serving the unique needs of this 
area, which lacks the familiar elements of agriculture as it is known elsewhere." 

Thinking along this line has been worked into three projects being developed by 
the Hinesville Relocation Corporation. At Hazlehurst (see interview in appendix) 
an 18,000 acre tract of timber and turpentine is being developed into a project for 
120 families. Here they will have, besides small acreages of cotton and tobacco, 
extra income from turpentine, and tended forests, along with poultry and hog 
raising. At Vidalia, Farm Security has helped a number of small farmers to set 
up a cooperative turpentine still, so they can make gum farming a regular source 
of income. In other parts of this coastal region attempts are being made to help 
turpentine workers develop subsistence patches, and to help small operators make 
gum farming a part of their regular plans of work. 

Following are the results of an original survey of the 215,000 first priority area, 
listing 173 families. Note the large number of farm laborers and miscellaneous 



Owner operator . 








Number of families to be relocated, 713. 
Unclassified, 28. 

To date, 1,116 of the estimated 1,500 families in the entire area have been 
interviewed. Of these 925 have actually moved, 887 of them paying moving 
expenses with small grants furnished through Federal Security Administration's 
relocation office. 

Of this group 51 moved to corporation farms immediately (others moved there 
after going somewhere else); 126 purchased farms; 256 leased farms; 491 made 
other arrangements, that is, they moved to town or rented houses without land 
out in the country. 

A more accurate indication of the movements of these people can be gained 
from the following table of figures derived from individual family records in the 
relocation office. No moving grant checks are given until the parties have actually 
moved. The final addresses here were given as the places to which the people 
wanted their checks mailed. 


A total of 860 of the 925 families who had actually moved through December 5. 
1941, were included in this tabulation: 

Of the 442 white families — 

150 found some place to move to in the same county; 
110 moved to one of five adjoining counties; 
68 moved to Savannah, or its outskirts; 

1 moved to Brunswick; 
59 moved to other counties in Georgia; 
45 moved to relocation projects; 
9 moved out of State — 5 to Florida, 3 to North Carolina, 1 to South Caro- 
Of the 418 Negro families — 

123 found some place to move to in the same county; 
161 moved to one of five adjoining counties; 
57 moved to Savannah, or its outskirts; 
11 moved to Brunswick; 
52 moved to other counties in Georgia; 
10 moved to relocation projects; 
4 moved out of State — 3 to Florida, 1 to Washington, D. C. 

Many of these moves were temporary. Mr. Payne explained that a great 
number of these people had been scarcely 50 miles away from home in their lives. 
They were frightened at the thought of going outside their home county, or sec- 
tion. Later, when they found living or working conditions in the new places 
unsatisfactory, they moved farther on. This will happen more frequently, he 
said, when defense work around Hinesville has been completed. A good number 
of the families coming to the relocation farms first moved somewhere else. 

The following figures, taken from the same records as the above, show what 
these families arranged for their first move. The records tabulate 1,077 of the 
1,116 families interviewed through December 5. Of this group of 1,077, 584 
were white and 493 Negro. 

Of the 584 white families, 248 were landowners and this is what happened to 
them: 94 became owners again; 29 became tenants; 2 became sharecroppers; 60 
became laborers; 6 moved to corporation farms; 57 have not moved. 

Of the 86 tenants, 2 became owners; 26 tenants; 4 sharecroppers; 29 laborers; 
9 moved to corporation farms; 16 have not moved. 

Of 106 sharecroppers, 3 became owners: 3 became tenants; 19 became share- 
croppers; 27 laborers; 12 moved to corporation farms; 42 have not moved. 

Of 144 laborers, one became owner; 6 tenants; 5 sharecroppers; 101 laborers; 
17 moved to corporation farms; 14 have not moved. 

Of the 493 Negro families, 149 were landowners, and of these 30 became owners 
again; 42 tenants; 12 sharecroppers; 45 laborers; none moved to corporation 
farms; 20 have not moved. 

Of 51 Negro tenants, none became owners; 14 tenants; 6 sharecroppers; 16 
laborers; one moved to corporation farms; 14 have not moved. 

Of 110 Negro sharecroppers, 2 became owners; 11 tenants; 25 sharecroppers; 
29 laborers; none moved to corporation farms; 33 have not moved. 

Of 183 Negro laborers, one became an owner; 12 tenants; 6 sharecroppers; 144 
laborers; 10 moved to corporation farms and 10 have not moved. 

Farm Security Administration Relocation Projects for Defense Displaced 
Farm Families in Georgia 

To help relocate tenants, laborers and farm owners with little equity, who were 
moved from the Hinesville area, Farm Security Administration, through the 
Hinesville Relocation Corporation, has bought an 18,000-acre tract of land in 
Jeff Davis County, near Hazlehurst, three tracts in Wheeler (the adjoining) 
County totaling 8,000 acres and about the same acreage in Screven County. (The 
Screven County tract will also take care of some farmers displaced by defense 
projects around Augusta.) These three projects, to be operated through a single 
office will care, according to present plans for subdivision and development, for a 
total of about 120 families. Additional land has been optioned. 

The project at Hazlehurst was begun in February 1941. Sixty-nine pre- 
fabricated houses were erected within 2 weeks to care for displaced families with 
no shelter whatever, and these houses have served as residences for the families 
who have developed the project. Sixteen additional prefabricated houses were 
put up on the Wheeler project. 

Originally the land acquired near Hazlehurst was a huge turpentine tract, 
cropped on a lease basis by a single operator who had a small camp for the dozen 


or so families who worked regularly for him. These families have been moved 
by the operator to other tracts he is working. The three Wheeler County tracts 
were also largely devoted to turpentine production, on each of which were a 
number of small "patch" farmers (tenants). They were given a chance to enter 
the developing venture, and most of them have done so. 

Of the 141 families living on property owned by the Relocation Corporation in 
Jeff Davis and Wheeler Counties, 59 moved directly from the condemned area 
near Hinesville and a number of others moved somewhere else and then came to 
the project. Twenty-two were regular Farm Security clients. 

For almost a year the entire group has been engaged in clearing land, building 
fences, cutting fire lanes, clearing out turpentine forests, building roads and, 
within the last 6 months, building the bars and houses that will be a part of per- 
manent family units. This work is being done on an hourly basis. 

About 2 dozen of the families arrived early enough in the spring to make some 
kind of a crop, and others planted spring gardens. For the bulk of the families 
a community garden was set out and has been tended by the old people on the 
project who are not able to join crews doing such heavy work as clearing land 
and fence building. 

According to C. B. Earnest, the project manager, 9 families have left for jobs 
in other places. Forty-four families, most of them former turpentine workers 
and wage laborers, are planning to leave the project for jobs in private industry 
as soon as the wage work on the project is over. Ninety-seven of the 141 now 
living on the land have stated that they want to operate farms, and applications 
for farms have been received from 30 additional families. Mr. Earnest expects 
that many more applications will come in from farmers, both from those who 
have been displaced by the area and from others, as soon as the construction jobs 
around Hinesville are finished. 

For the Hazlehurst project the cropping plan is as follows: 1,008 acres were 
cleared when the property was bought and 1,600 acres have been cleared since 
that time. Ninety miles of fence have been erected. More land will be cleared. 
More than two-thirds of the land, however, will be left in pines, and will be oper- 
ated for both turpentine and timber. It has been estimated that there are V/% 
million feet of marketable black-pine timber on the project land. 

The cleared land is being divided into 2-horse units. Each will have enough 
land to allow for a large garden, a 9-acre hog pasture, fenced so as to make pos- 
sible three-way rotation of grazing; a chicken run, a small permanent pasture 
and land enough to grow small acreages of cotton and tobacco, some truck and 
enough feed to supply all home needs. Each farmer will have a minimum of 
2 brood sows. Starting with 2 good milk cows each, they will use high quality 
sires and save calves to build eventually small herds averaging 10 milk cows per 
farm. This will give them, finally, income from both milk and calves. Starting 
with flocks averaging 35 layers, it is hoped each farmer will have 100 producing 
hens by the end of the third year. 

Allotments of both cotton and tobacco are very low here. Reasons: (1) 
Most of the land has just been cleared so there is not crop history on which to 
establish a base; (2) both Jeff Davis and Wheeler Counties were late comers in 
Georgia's move to produce tobacco and thus had small acreages when the quota 
system was voted into effect. (Tobacco has been the chief money crop for many 
of the farmers who moved from the Hinesville area.) 

Most of these people formerly were tenants. Allotments they worked at 
Hinesville went with the land, and could not be transferred to the new locations. 
But the project farmers will be able to plant as many acres of peanuts as they 
choose, and about as much truck as they .will want to until farms are more com- 
pletely developed. 

A typical unit will have a house with three bed rooms (a closet in each) , a 
kitchen with a dining bay, a living room, a small entrance porch on the front 
and a screened work porch at the back. In the kitchen will be a sink and drain, 
with connections for running water. In addition there is being put up on each 
farm an outdoor sanitary unit, a smokehouse, a 20- by 20-foot poultry house (100- 
layer capacity), and a 40- by 29- by 8-foot barn. 

For 18 of the units turpentining will take the place of cash crop farming. A 
farmer on one of these units will have a garden and will get some money from 
hogs, cattle, and chickens. But his main source of income will be from 2^000 to 
3,000 turpentine "faces", which will provide him with work and a living about 8 
months in the year. So far, all turpentine work has been done on an hourly basis 
of 25 cents, and most of it by Negroes who had been turpentine workers in the 
Hinesville area. It is expected that most of the turpentine units will be occupied 
by Negroes. 


At present there are 23 Negro families on the Hazlehurst project. They live 
in 2 groups of houses quite separated from the rest. All families on the Wheeler 
County tracts are white. 

The project has almost accidentally produced a sizable flock of young laying 
hens that may serve to give the new farmers a start. Last spring Cherry Lake 
Farms (Farm Security Administration community in Florida) had 1,300 sexed 
baby chicks it could not take care of, so sent them to Hazlehurst. An epidemic 
killed about 200 but the rest have developed well and now are in 30-percent pro- 
duction. The eggs are being sold through a local dealer to the Jacksonville, Fla., 
market at a net wholesale price of 40 cents for No. l's and 35 cents for pullet eggs. 

The Altamaha eighth-grade grammer school is located in the middle of the 
project. It has a new building with a good auditorium and should serve as a 
useful and easily accessible community center. A trick of fortune has given it 
experienced teachers. When a law was passed in Hazlehurst 2 years ago for- 
bidding married women to teach in the city's schools, these women were hired by 
the county system. 

Though children from the project make up only a small part of the total enroll- 
ment, their parents have been the main supporters of a money-raising campaign 
to buy dishes and other utensils for lack of which the school had never been able 
to have a hot-lunch program. This has helped to create a favorable attitude 
among the neighbors. 

There are two churches on land surrounded by the project, Baptist and Meth- 
odist, both with part-time preachers. Many families from the project have joined 
these, and a few have joined congregations in Hazlehurst. One prefabricated 
building has been turned into a community clubhouse, and the project now has 
a Home Demonstration Club and a Young People's Club, both of which have 
regular weekly meetings. 

Special attention has been given the newcomers to the project by some promi- 
nent Jeff Davis County folks who recognize this as a relatively large group of new 
voters. Other "substantial" citizens of the county who were regarding the project 
negatively at first have become its supporters through the efforts of the local bank 
president. He has made it his special chore to explain to all that the Relocation 
Corporation is a private organization and pays its full share of taxes. 

Frequent small meetings have been held with groups of the farmers during the 
past 2 months to explain to them details of how the new units will be assigned, 
and what those who occupy them will be expected to do. This is being done 
before any plans for occupancy are made by either party. Judging from casual 
interviews, these farmers seem to be unusually well informed on the general 
principles and requirements of the Farm Security program. 

It is planned to tie the project work as closely as possible with that of the local 
Farm Security program in Jeff Davis County. Though a small county, Jeff Davis 
has an active rehabilitation case load of 162 families and has 13 tenant purchase 

Groups of farmers on the project are making plans to apply for community and 
cooperative service loans for the purchase of mowers and rakes, peanut pickers, 
and other heavy equipment. -No community association has yet been formed. 


In South Carolina 26,000 acres were acquired for extension of the Army reserva- 
tion at Fort Jackson, near Columbia, necessitating the moving of 205 families. _ 

The composition of these families varies considerably from that of dwellers in 
the tracts in Alabama and Georgia previously described. Only about one-fourth 
of the number lived entirely on farm income. In most of the others, small farming 
or "patch" operations were carried on by members of households, while one or 
more members had jobs in town. The families supported partly by Work Projects 
Administration or Civilian Conservation Corps help were numerous. 

There was little dislocation here. While investigators found that a large per- 
centage of the families disliked the idea of moving, the process of land acquisition 
had been smooth, ample notice had been given, and the inhabitants were ac- 
customed to the experience of a neighboring Army camp, Fort Jackson having 
been a settled establishment since the last war, though dwindling in the period of 

However, in view of the depressed economic condition of the families, it was 
necessary to make grants for moving expenses — 221 grants have been made 
totaling *$6, 387. 

The expanding camp has provided occupation for as many as wanted to find 
work at day labor. It was necessary to move comparatively few to farms else- 
where. Less than 10 percent have purchased farms elsewhere, but all 205 families 
have been relocated, in town or nearby, by their own effort or with [help. 



To build an Infantry replacement center near Spartanburg, S. C, Camp Croft 
was established, and 17,000 acres of land acquired. On this tract lived 295 

The Farm Security Administration undertook early in the process to move its 
15 borrower families to other farm lands, and this was completed last February. 
The movement of other families proceeded less expeditiously. 

The tract acquired was made up of old farm land, which supported generally 
no more than a passable farm economy. It was necessary to make through 
Farm Security Administration 282 grants to help the moving, totaling $9,714. 
At this writing, the entire former population has been relocated. Good farming 
land in the vicinity is scarce. 

Sixteen families moved into prefabricated houses erected on Palmetto Farms 
(an enterprise of the Relocation Corporation, near Pacolet, S. C). Most of those 
moved to farm land, preferring this to remaining near the camp and city and 
finding construction work, are farming on small patches which offer little more than 
the opportunity of subsistence farming. 


Relocation problems in the Santee-Cooper area are unique among the group 
herein described, both because of the nature of the project and the composition 
of the families involved. Next to the Hinesville area, the Santee-Cooper flood 
area embraced the largest number of familes to be moved — 841- — for the most 
part Negroes living on small tracts, as owners or squatters, which they had 
occupied in a remote section for generations. So remote, indeed, was the habi- 
tations of many, that a kind of tribal custom had developed among them. Their 
enforced moving was accompanied by a large degree of bewilderment and help- 
lessness on the part of the little farmers. 

Comprising few off-the-farm laborers, the group had grown up in a generally 
agrarian tradition, and amid standards extremely low. 

The Farm Security Administration was obliged to make 432 grants for moving 
in this area, totaling $40,277 — an average considerably higher than the grant 
necessary in other areas. 

Out of the enforced movement of this group came the greatest demand for farm 
land, the greatest tax upon the resources of the Palmetto Relocation Corporation, 
which handles the South Carolina program. One of the noteworthy ventures to 
which it gave rise was establishment of a community general farm in Richland 
County, near Columbia, on land which was bought from one of the landed estates 
of the locality, the property of the Hamer family. 

While accommodating only 40 families, the program followed in this under- 
taking is watched as a likely model. Each will have a subsistence unit for home 
living and will work on the main farm, receiving compensation from the farm's 
profits on the basis of labor applied. There will be central pastures. Each 
family will be housed, with a general sanitation system, water supply, poultry 
unit, fencing, etc. Loans will be made for improvement and operation to be 
liquidated over 40 years, with the result of private ownership. 


A tract of 40,000 acres was acquired for extension of the great military center 
at Fort Benning, Ga. Bought in Russell County, Ala., across the Chattahoochee 
River, and in Muscogee County, Ga., it was- obtained for maneuver purposes and 
to give room for parachute training. In this tract lived 352 families, most of 
whom were laborers on farms and in urban centers. The largest proportion was 

Indicative of the family composition is the analysis of one segment of the 
tract on which 92 families lived: 



Farm owner... 



Farm laborer . 





Relocation work is not yet complete in this area. The Farm Security made 
grants totaling $4,604 to aid in moving 207 cases. Many of the inhabitants 
moved to nearby urban centers — Columbus, Phenix City, and Girard — to subsist 
by labor (mostly unskilled) on construction projects. Those who stuck to farming 
were enabled to find locations on farms on the fringe of the area, as renters, wage 
hands, and Farm Security Administration clients. 


Relocation work is in progress on tracts acquired for a flying field near Sumter, 
S. C. (3,000 acres), a flying field near Tuskegee, Ala. (3,000 acres), and a triangular 
training camp near Augusta, Ga., the largest of the new acquisitions, embracing 
55,000 acres. 

This latter tract, in the heart of the widely publicized "Tobacco Road" section, 
was sparsely settled. Of 270 families included, relocation plans have been made 
to date (December 15) for only 118. Grants for moving, totaling $4,604, were 
made by Farm Security Administration in 138 cases. 


Early in January 1942 the Army began construction of a triangular division 
cantonment near Ozark, Ala., using as a site 35,000 acres in the Pea River project 
already cleared of inhabitants by Federal submarginal land programs in 1934-35, 
and acquiring 30,000 additional acres of adjoining farmland in Dale County and 
3,000 acres in Coffee County. All except 28 of the 296 families being displaced 
are full-time farmers. 

Many factors have joined to make the immediate job of relocation here less 
difficult than in other areas of Alabama. Expanding shipbuilding and allied in- 
dustries in Gulf coast towns offering "permanent" employment have drained the 
area, leaving many openings for tenants and day hands. Ozark being in the center 
of Alabama's leading peanut-producing section, the almost doubled acreage called 
by the "Food for Victory" campaign has greatly increased demand for farm labor, 
according to Dale County's Agricultural Agent, W. D. Thomason. 1 

In addition, techniques worked out in other sections by Farm Security relocation 
staffmen have been applied directly here. Called on the job January 5, they were 
able to report that by January 27, 111 of the 296 families had actually been 
evacuated and, of the 185 families still in the area, 70 definitely had places to move. 
The fact that January is "moving month" in this section sped this work, too. 

As to the availability of land for evacuees, Daniel Hollis, Jr., assistant in charge 
of relocation here wrote: 

"It is not likely that land need be acquired in this section for the resettlement 
project for this year. However, in order to effect a permanent rehabilitation and 
resettlement of these displaced families it is highly likely that such a project should 
be put into operation for next year, in order to restore and retain the present status 
of displaced families." 

Chief agricultural worries in the area are centered now on the possibility that 
"union pay" work on the cantonment will draw so many farm laborers from all 
over this peanut section that it will be impossible for farmers to meet Victory 
production goals. Construction began the middle of January and must be com- 
pleted in 120 days, or by May 20. The anticipated peak pay roll will number 
18,000, of whom' half will be unskilled workers and the rough construction will 
make it possible for partially skilled mechanics to fill another fourth of the jobs. 

The problem of finding living accommodations for workers on the construction 
job has already become acute, and local agents of the Employment Service report 
that it is seriously interfering with their recruiting as well as with actual perform- 
ance of workers. Salaried officials are commuting 18 miles to Enterprise. Un- 
skilled laborers from the surrounding farms bunch together and ride in on old 
tires. By March 1 United States Employment Service officials expect these to 
be crowding up with several thousand unskilled workers who have already set up 
bunks in every empty dwelling, barn or shanty within walking distance of the job. 

Bunkhouse, cabin, and trailer-camp accommodations usually built by private 
individuals near such jobs are — and will be — scarce here because of the short 
work season guaranteed and the relatively low wages paid. (Unskilled labor gets 
40 cents an hour, or $16 when they make a full week.) 

i Thomason reports that the use of small tractors for peanut cultivation has almost doubled in the past 
year. Since these machines are still available, he, expects this trend to continue. 



On February 2, representatives of the Army, Extension Service, Farm Security 
and United States Employment Service met in Ozark. They decided to — ■ 

1. Carry on an educational campaign among the farmers, pointing out the brief 
period work will be available and urge them to put in their crops and then make 
as much time on the cantonment as this will allow. 

2. Appeal to the farm women to fill the breach; ask authorities to make high 
school children available during planting season; help farmers schedule their 
operations to better utilize what labor they have. 

3. The Employment Service agreed to "refuse to certify" applicants living out- 
side commuting distances if they have been regularly employed in farm work dur- 
ing the previous year. 

4. On request from the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, they mapped a route for 
shuttle trains to collect workers from a 50-mile radius, thus spreading labor drain. 
(Outlying points on the proposed routes: Dothan, Abbeville, Troy, and Elba.) 

5. While the trains will give some relief, they determined to get some public 
agency to set up temporary housing. They suggested that the relatively mild 
climate and the temporary nature of the work would make most practicable the use 
of such temporary shelters as are provided by tent platform camps developed by 
Farm Security engineers to house migratory farm laborers. 


New relocation projects are continuously developing. Late in January the 
Army began acquisition of 118,000 acres in central Florida for a bombing'field. 
It is located in swampy grazing area near Sebring, 15 miles east of Avon Park. 

A total of 18 families, all white, live in this area, most of them small cattlemen 
running stock on open range. One family operates a fishing resort on Arbuckle 
Creek and 2 own houses and lots on the lakes. All of these families have been 
contacted and a survey made of each family. 

By February 3, four families had already moved, and the 14 remaining were 
working out plans with local Farm Security supervisors to find new homes and 
ranges. It is possible that several families will become clients of the Dixie 
Cattlemen's Association, at Okeechobee, which is being developed with Farm 
Security assistance by a number of small cattlemen. 

Appendix D. Land Purchases 


(South Carolina) 










147. 84 
1, 936. 50 

$7, 200. 00 
29, 000. 00 
5, 913. 00 
27, 260. 00 


4, 547. 70 
3, 326. 86 
2, 359. 50 
2, 339. 80 

$123, 855. 00 
74, 000. 00 



46, 381. 00 



5, 719. 14 
7, 572. 06 
1, 298. 50 

$69, 500. 00 
96, 356. 00 
8, 100. 00 
13, 000. 00 
84, 400. 00 

18, 076. 62 
4, 282. 40 
4, 505. 19 

$178, 850. 00 


Wheeler and Laurens 



Madison _ 

5,141.01 $159,725.00 Talladega. 
7, 267. 12 173, 570. 00 

13. 663. 50 $237, 227. 50 



Here is the story of what happens to people — to individuals and to groups — 
under the impact of forces beyond themselves, harried by the new forces abroad 
in the land, shaken from old customs, occupations, communities. It is the 
testimony of men and women driven into a new migration from the land by 
necessities of national defense. 

Farm migration and displacement of farm people in the South, it is to be noted, 
is not a new thing, born of the national emergency. It is merely an accentuation 
of historic trends. Many of the displaced farmers who either went to town or 
rented houres and small patches in the country from which they are going to day 
work, eventually would have drifted into this anyhow. From the accumulation 
of the case histories may be drawn evidence to support the impersonal presentation 
of the facts found in the text of the report. 

Thete slories, all added up, should show that the situation under study is, 
peculiarly in the Southeast, deeply involved in human and social relations, in 
traditions, customs, unique husbandry, and historic conflicts. 

Case Histories 
the plantation disintegrates talladega county (childersburg area) 

(Alpine and Plantersville are two of the oldest agricultural settlements in this 
section of Alabama, and a few of the original slave-holding families remain on the 
land, woiking it with tenants who are the children of slaves on these same planta- 
tions. The following group of interviews is concerned with dislocations of the 
peculiarly Old South landlord-tenant relations on the paternal side. There is a 
special helplesFness and bewilderment to be seen among tenants of this sort cut 
loose from historic moorings.) 

Case I 

Mr. Arnett owns 142J4 acres. He and his wife have a good many children. 

When the area was announced they had bought a place — the Winn place 
between here and Talladega. 

They paid $500 down, with the understanding that this amount was to go as 
rent for the first year if, for any reason, they did not take it. They moved their 
two Negro tenants, all their feed, stock, and tools, and three outbuildings. Then 
they had to move these back. But they operated both farms this summer. 
This was hard, since labor was scarce. The new farm was 230 acres, 85 of it in 
cultivation. They tried only corn, oats, and hay there. 

Counting money for repairs and all, they put $100 on the new place. It had a 
"big house" and two tenant houses on it. They have rented the big place for 
$25 a month to powder-plant people for 7 months (through December when it 
will go back to the owners) — making $175. One tenant house they have rented 
for $5 a month to Negro plant workers — $35 total. The other tenant house they 
have been getting $10 a month from for 2 months. Count this $30 in all, they 
said. So a total of $240 from rents. Counting in value of crops and all, they 
figured they lost $200 on the deal, not counting labor. 

The Negro tenants got $20 each from Farm Security Administration for moving. 
"And they used our mules and wagons and did it on our time," Mrs. Arnett said, 
a little put out. "Of course, we could have got something if we had gone in there 
and told a story but I'm not one to do a thing like that * * * I didn't think 
it was right of them getting it, either, and we could have busted it up, I guess. 
But we know better than to do thataway, with labor as hard to get as it is." 
She laughed at herself, good naturedly. 

"I never thought I'd come to pet niggers as I have this last year. We've taken 
a lot of foolishness off them and not said anything. * * *." 

Both she and Mr. Arnett began to laugh and he told about a neighbor who had 
been "very strict with his hands." When the powder plant come they all went 
off and left him, and even those who weren't working would not go pick his cotton. 
"It's there in the field now, and he can't hire anybody to touch it, not from 
round here." 

One Negro family is still with the Arnetts, but working at the powder plant 
part of the time. A second — one they kept praising as "the best farmer you 
ever saw — he's not just a good worker, he knows how to farm * * * he's 
been on this place all his life * * * born right around here * * *" — had 
decided to work in the powder plant full time. So they wouldn't lose him for 
good, they rented a house for him just across the road (rather poor looking shack) 


from Mrs. Arnett's brother. The Negro pays them rent but says he does not 
plan to farm so long as he can get other work. He thinks he can get work inside 
the plant when it opens, she said. 

To replace this family the Arnetts got another Negro couple * * * "They 
look like they're crazy anyway," she said, "I guess that's why nobody would 
hire them. But they're good workers, as good as you'll find anywhere." What 
will happen when all three families want to come back with them — they did not 

Mr. Arnett said he didn't blame any Negro for not wanting to farm here. 
They had a crop failure for 3 years. Last year they made four bales on 16 acres 
and this year they made five. His tenants work on halves. 

Case II 

On Mr. H. H. Cook's "small place" just below the crossroads at Plantersville 
are two houses. One is very near the road, a one-storied, six-room house built 
in a U, with a porch across the front. At one time, probably only a few years 
ago, it was a respectable residence, plastered inside, and well appointed, if a bit 
shabby. Now three Negro families from Mr. Cook's old farm live here. 

The front door, most of its side panes covered with cardboard, was barred. 

The well in the narrow yard formed by the two wings of the house was "dry." 
It was the only thing around in that condition. Rain leaked down inside the 
two rooms where Eddie Garrett, his wife, and two little girls live. Eddie was 
"out hunting." The rest of the family sat around the open fire in the larger 
room. Eddie has been working at the powder plant since July and signs of hi3 
new wealth were about; a battery radio, a sewing machine, some bright knitted 
caps for the children, and some oranges. Garrett's wife, a small, neat, quiet- 
spoken girl was reading a copy of Good Housekeeping (bright advertisement pages 
from Vogue and The Saturday Evening Post helped hide spots on the wall where 
the plaster had failed from the laths). 

She and Eddie moved from Mr. H. H. Cook's place the last day of February. 

Until July her husband worked as a day hand for H. H. Cook and his brother, 
C. C, since July he has been working on the powder plant job. She did not know 
what they are going to do when the area job is over. For 8 years they have 
been working for Mr. H. H. Cook and both were "born and raised" on the place. 

The house, she said, is better than the one they lived in before, and seemed 
surprised at my questions about how many lived there (3 families, 11 people, in 
6 rooms). Each of the couples pays $1.50 a week for the house. (It was sur- 
mised from general conversation that they had been paying this only since they 
started working at the plant.) She has a few chickens — 12 laying hens, all that 
is left of her farming. There is no garden. 

The men make $4 a day on the powder-plant job, she said. This is "mighty 
good to what they been getting a-farming." They didn't get "enough to live 
on, hardly" when her husband was farming. 

Later Eddie came in. He is working for 50 cents an hour digging ditches for 
the pipe line laying. He doesn't expect to get work much longer, "the way 
they keep turning them off up there." He hasn't planned anything beyond that, 
but he was very definite in stating that he did not expect to go back to farming so 
long as there was any chance to get more "public work." He has worked for 
H. H. Cook as a day or month wage hand for the past 7 or 8 years, leaving him 
only for a week or two at a time to pick up a few days work on nearby farms. 
The pay: $10 a month, and a house, during planting, chopping, and gathering 
time; 75 cents a day for any work done during lay by time, or during the winter 
months. He was better off than most on the Cook place, he saii — with special 
pride in the fact that he was a favorite, plainly exhibited. He "milked by the 
month" for Mr. Cook and, on special occasions, acted as "butler boy around the 

When probed about next year, and what he might be doing he finally said, 
"I can't hardly say. I ain't gonna farm if I can reach out and get something 
else." What this might be he seemed to have not the faintest idea. 

He hasn't been able to save anything, he said, because "I had a big debt in 
front of me." (Remember the new radio, the new clothes, and the sewing ma- 
chine.) This money was, and is, owed to Mr. Cook. Mr. Cook took him down 
to the union last July and got him the job. (He confirmed story that they didn't 
get money for moving. Told that they moved "too quick.") 

"If I hadn't got on I'd sho' be back in the woods 'til yet," Garrett said. He 
"draws" $25, or about that, every pay day. He gives "the biggest part of that 


to Mr. Cook, excusing what I keeps out for groceries * * *." He thinks he 
is about out of debt now. 

Garrett said, finally, "If it looks like it's gonna wrap me up in debt again, 
I ain't gonna farm * * * I knows that." 


Case III 

Henry and Lola Joiner have lived around "Palm Beat" in the arsenal area, all 
their lives. Both came from landowning families and they had always wanted 
to buy a place of their own. Last January they moved from their old rented 
place near Palm Beat to an old house on a farm they were buying through the 
tenant-purchase program. When their new house was finished in May they moved 
into it. In September they were forced to move back to the old house on their 
farm because, Lola explained, "the building men told us they wanted to use our 
new house for an office." However, no use was made of the house. In November 
they moved a fourth time, to this house on the new tract they are buying with 
four other tenant-purchase borrowers. 

They were able to gather about 75 percent of their crop on the old place — 
the first and only crop they got a chance to make there. The remainder was 
destroyed when a right-of-way was cut. So far, the wife said, they have heard 
nothing about getting paid for this. 

The husband has been working at the arsenal job since September. The wife 
and her two sons, 13 and 16 years of age, did all the harvesting. 

Lola is a Barney, one of the leading Negro landowner families in the Palm 
Beat community destroyed by the arsenal development. Her mother owned 
about 400 acres, and the whole family group (some 9 households in all) owned 
around 1,000 acres. Some of this was mortgaged. They have received no money 
for it, so far. Already they have bargained for about half this number of acres in 
another part of the county and have taken over a house in town. This dwelling 
is being used by several of the children who attend Alabama State Normal 
College and others who are working at the Russell Erskine Hotel in Huntsville. 
She is sure they plan to keep on farming. Certainly she does. 

"All my family likes to work. We likes to plow and we likes to hoe and we 
likes to spread our arms out and grab hold of something * * *." 

Other farmers taking over this tract will be moving into shacks left by the 
former operator's day hands. Since all the latter are still in the houses working 
on the arsenal job, some suffering is bound to take place here, for the area was 
cleared in January. 

Case IV 

All except two of the nine tenant-purchase farmers moved from the area will be 
farming in the spring of 1942, either on rented places or ones optioned to buy 
through the Bankhead-Jones program. The two have not been able to locate 
places for crops and, unless one can be found, will have to do what day work they 
can find until land can be found. 

Williams, one of the nine, does not want to try buying a farm again. The 
buildings on his new place were all completed. He had worked on them himself. 
Then he and his family were forced to move. He moved to another part of the 
same community, hoping to be able to gather his crops, but was moved twice 
again and most of his crop was destroyed in the early clearing. He was not able 
to harvest one ear of corn or pick one boll of cotton. Now is he living in a rented 
house outside of town. 

Robert has received no money for his destroyed crops and had difficulty getting 
work on the arsenal job. His three head of work stock, several cows and hogs 
have cost him a great deal to feed. He plans to farm again, he told Mr. Lynn, 
but does not want to try buying. 

"He put a great deal of work on that farm last winter and spring and he feels 
mighty discouraged about it now," Mr. Lynn said. "Getting moved so many 
times like that he seems to feel somebody's got something against him. He told 
me he guessed they never meant for him to own a place." 


Fully 200 white men, most of them in overalls with big numbered union buttons 
pinned on conspicuously, were scrouged up on a couple of narrow porches around 
the rough pine common laborers' union headquarters, "waiting for a call." An 
equal number of Negroes were squeezed under the narrow eaves and along an 


alley in the back. It was drizzling rain, mid-afternoon and spirits were low. One 
man, a farmer in his late thirties, started telling about it. 

Case V 

"It's a joke," he said. He had signed up with the union in August and every 
few days since then had come down from his farm in Morgan County, 30 miles 
away, to see if there was anything doing. He had not found a single day of work, 
so far. "They're giving the jobs to men who come from away off. They can come 
from these other jobs and get right on and us living around here can't get on at all." 

Sure, he was going to make a crop next year. He was down here hoping to 
make enough money so he wouldn't have go go in debt for it next spring. But 
now he'll be glad if he makes enough days to pay back all the money he's spent on 
transportation — 30 miles each way. 

Case VI 

Carney Glover lives in the northern part of Madison County, almost on the 
Tennessee line. He has been farming for the past 5 years on a third and fourth 
basis as a Farm Security Administration rehabilitation borrower. Since October 
4, when he joined up with the union, he has been coming the 20 miles to town and 
20 miles back again looking for work. He wanted to know why it was they didn't 
hire the farmers the way they promised to, now that crop season was over? 

"Yes; I'm making another crop next year. I want to get so I won't have to 
keep going in debt on my crops what I'm after," he said. 

Some person who had gotten work on the powder plant offered his landlord as 
much for the use of the house as he was paying in rent (averaged on cotton third) 
for the house and land, so he, Glover, has had to move. He found another place 
in the same section which he is renting on the third and fourth basis. 

Case VI I 

Virgil Turner came 18 miles down from Hurricane Creek almost every morning 
from August 15 when he signed up with the union, until November 24 without 
getting work. Now he is making, as he put it, "more money in less time" than 
he has ever made in his life. For the last year or so, until the first of August, he 
was working on Work Projects Administration. After being cut off, on days he 
did not come to Huntsville he found work around the neighborhood at $1 a day 
for straight farm work, hay baling, etc., and $1.50 a day (average) for picking 

Turner used to farm and wants to go back to it, if he can get his hands on some 
stock and some good land. Since the tractors have come along, he said, a man 
working on shares can't get land. 

"The big fellows, they get all this Government rent money and pay for their 
tractors and the little work they hire with that," he said. "All they make on 
crops, hit's plum clear." 

Six dollars a month is what Turner pays for his house opt in the country. It 
is better than the average tenant house, he said. He didn't know whether or not 
the rent would be increased, but suspected it would. Several people had been 
around looking at it. 

Case VIII 

W. A. Bishop has rented a 120-acre farm-near New Market in Madison County, 
70 acres of it in cultivation, from his brother-in-law for the past several years. 
He has been working on the job for the past 3 weeks and this is his first experience 
doing "public work". He is a common laborer. 

He does not plan to operate the farm next year, because he has no "plow 
hands" in his family and doesn't think he can hire any at reasonable prices. 
This fall, for example, he had to pay $1 a day for harvest hands and $1 a hundred 
forcotton pickers. "And you can't get a nigger to cut wood." 

Something else is bothering Bishop. People around in his community are 
raising rents from a third and fourth arrangement to straight thirds. He is afraid 
this will happen to his place. He does hope to stay on in the same house and 
commute to work, but doesn't know whether his brother-in-law will be able to 
rent the land without the house. 
-42— pt. 32 10 


Cantrell's Bunk House 
Beds 50 cents night 
Hot water showers 
L. J. Cantrell, Mgr. 

This sign hung over a small frame building, a converted neighborhood store on 
the outskirts of Huntsville. Inside were a dozen men sitting on homemade stools 
and benches around a pot-bellied stove. Twenty-eight iron cots covered with 
Army blankets lined down the building and in adjoining long room were 24 other 
beds, spaced about 18 inches part. In the rear was a tin-floored shower cubicle 
with two jets and two metal sinks. Toilet facilities were outside pits. 

Mr. Cantrell, it seemed, is from McMinville, Tenn. He had a similar bunk- 
house at Tullahoma and at Milan, Tenn., when the defense jobs were going there. 
A good many of the patrons are from around McMinville and have lived with him 
while working on the other jobs. The place was bare, reasonably clean. Weekly 
rates are $3. They have averaged 10 or 12 customers a night for the past month- 
Case IX 

This is the sixth week H. L. Brown had squatted in that dark hall and he was 
getting a little out of patience. For 4 weeks he commuted the 38 miles each way 
from where his wife and family live with the in-laws in Launeck Cove. 

Until recently Brown was a farmer. Now he works as an ironmaker * * *. 

"If I can get on * * *." ■ 

He worked on the Milan, Tenn. job from the 29th of July to the last part of 
October. There he and his wife and two children lived in a converted smoke 
house, for which they paid $5.50 a week. It was furnished with one double bed 
and a' half bed, a small stove and some utensils. 

"It wasn't bad, once we got used to it." 

Here in Huntsville, Brown and his brother have found a boarding place about 
which they are very pleased. They pay $8 a week and get meals and a room to 
themselves. The only trouble is that neither of them likes to be away from their 

Case X 

W M. Jennings, now rooming with another worker came to the Huntsville 
job from Childersburg the last of October. His family lives near Gadsden, 78 
miles away. For 4 weeks he traveled this distance back and forth every day — 
156 miles. It took too much out of him, he said, so he moved in with Annis and 
now goes to see his family on week-ends. _ 

"I couldn't find a place any closer we could live," he explained. He has a wife 
and two children. . . n ,„. 

Immediately before coming to Huntsville, Jennings worked on the Childers- 
burg job and "lived in Birmingham, 38 miles away. Commuting was easy here, 
after they put on the special train, he said. For $40 a month they got a two-room 
apartment with bath and kitchenette. "It was just all right. Now, if I could 
get a place like that here I wouldn't kick." • 

Before going to Childersburg, Jennings worked at Camp Blanding and lived 
in Jacksonville, 48 miles away. This meant 96 miles traveled every day, but 
he could find no "fittin' place" any closer to the job. There they found a couple 
of furnished rooms for $10 a week. 

"If I don't find some place where I can bring my family over here, my wife s 
gonna quit me and my kids are going to get so they don't known me * * *. 
Jennings wanted to get one of those Government trailers, too. 

Case XI 

The first year of married life for the Harley F. Leonards has been one of shuttl- 
ing around from boarding house to furnished apartment to auto court and back to 
boarding house again. October of 1940 Harley left Columbus, Ga., his home, to 
work as a plumber on a defense job at Tallahassee, Fla. He found a furnished 
apartment there for $37.50 and there they spent their honeymoon. He had been 
living in a single room, paying $5 a week for it. 

His next job was on Camp Gordon in Atlanta after being without work for 
several weeks. Here they found a boarding house where they got excellent food 
and a clean room for $14 a week. 


When the Camp Gordon job was over they traveled for 2 weeks without work 
again. He got work for 1 week in Charleston, S. C, and then was without it for 

3 months. 

"That's what happens to the big wages we make." Leonard said. "Most folks 
don't know how much it costs to travel around like this * * *." 

"If you don't save at least half what you make," his wife put in, "you'll be 
having to beg as soon as the job gives out." 

In July he got work near Anniston on the Fort McClellan job and they lived in 
a furnished apartment, paying $45 a month. 

When they came to Huntsville, the 1st of November, they stayed at a hotel for 

4 days, then found a boarding place, where they paid $20 a week for the two of 

"The only place I've seen that I'd really enjoy living in here is priced at $85 
a month — and it's nothing in the world but a furnished upstairs of a house," 
Mrs. Leonard said. She wasn't complaining, though. She was too much excited 
at the prospect of moving into one of the trailers. 

Case XII. Lester England Sells Out 

Lester England owns between 1,500 and 2,000 acres of farm land in the north- 
ern neck of Talladega County, near the Fort McClellan extension, and operates 
a country store and furnishing establishment in the old bank building at Lincoln. 
His trade has been, for the most part, "with my own folks." The defense work 
has played havoc with his farming operations, he said. 

"The trouble is, one nigger'll get a job and the whole crowd of them will live 
off that one and won't raise a hand to do anything * * *. All the men that's 
fit to work have gone to these defense jobs and all you've got left is the old folks 
and the children * * *. The Government's paying them four times what 
they're worth. We never paid them more than $1 a day around here and now 
they're making $4. It's running them plum crazy. They'll buy automobiles 
and radios and won't work for hell. I've got over 100 shacks on my places and 
this summer I've had to go somewhere else to get hands. They'll sit back in them 
little shacks, five of six of them up together like pigs, and that radio'll be bustin' 
out 'til you can't hear nothing, and they wouldn't work for hell * * *. You 
know, most niggers won't work 'til they're hungry * * *. If the Govern- 
ments pay them about half what they're getting they'd get more work done 
# * * " 

This defense money disease is infecting the "good ones," too. 

"I had one fellow on my place, been here 10 years. He got a job on this defense 
and he up and quit — moved out. He'll be sorry he did that when all this shuts 
down. There's going to be a many a hungry nigger in this county about that 
time * * *." 

For the past several years England has been working most of his land himself. 
He has three tractors. The rest he rented out on "the fourth." Things have 
changed around here a great deal in the past 2 decades. Up until 1921, he said, 
farming was simple. You would give a hand a mule in the spring, tell him to 
plant cotton, and he planted it. When the boll weevil came a tenant had to 
start making his own feed. This complicated farming and he shifted from share- 
cropping to working his land on a fourth-rent basis, helping his men buy their 
stock through his store. When the cotton program was started "it shut some of 
the families off." 

This summer England operated about 500 acres himself, with tractors and 
wage hands "* * * and 100 acres I always made a crop on didn't get a plow 
stuck in it because I couldn't get the labor." Another 300 acres he operated with 
half tenants, to whom he furnishes stock, equipment, and supervision. The 
rest, in scattered tracts, was rented for cropping to people paying fourth rent. A 
good many of these did not work their crops, though, or worked with very little. 
They got jobs on the construction work, instead. 

"I almost always make 100 bales of cotton. This time I didn't make more than 
40. Couldn't get the hands. I still got a bale in the fields I can't get picked 
* t * *. Had to pay up to $1.50 a hundred for that I did get in * * *." 
Until late in November he was having to pay 10 cents a bale to have his hay 
pressed and stored. 

All the twenty-odd houses on England's land are filled. Several are occupied 
by defense workers, both Negro and white, who are paying $5 a month rent. 
"The rest are living at my expense * * *" (meaning they are not paving any 
cash rent) . 


"It's going to be a bad time around here when this stuff's over, and they ain't 
going to have nothing to run on. Here they're turning off a bunch of them up 
there at Fort McClellan, and do they look for another job? Hell, no. They're 
after that social security. I thought that was supposed to be for the next de- 
pression. * * *" 

England is getting out of it all. The defense project wages have given him a 
chance to collect some of the money owed him at the % store. He has optioned 
1,100 acres of his land to the relocation corporation, and plans to sell most of his 
tractors, mules, and equipment. He will still keep about 500 acres to operate 
himself, but does not expect to move any of his tenants there who aren't on the 
place already. This he will work with day hands. He assumed the relocation 
corporation would take care of the 20 houses full of tenants. 

England thought the relocation corporation work a good thing. "I figure 
the Government's going to cut this land up into 40-acre farms and tell them 
they can root or starve." 

Case XIII 

Robert Moody, a colored farmer 47 years of age, had lived for the past 5 years 
with his wife, three daughters and a son on a 212-acre place (most of it open range) 
he was trying to buy, located in Bryan County, near Pembroke. 

"I had it almost paid for," he reported, "when the man that had the note 
started pushing me. I went to see a fellow and see would he let me have the money. 
He say he'd take it up and pay me the difference, but he wouldn't let me have it 
to pay out. I knowed this here area was coming and I begged him, but he wouldn't, 
so I leave him have it." 

Moody thought he owed about $600 on his place, including taxes. He received 
from the man who took the farm $70 in cash. He did not know how much he 
had paid on the place ("most a thousand dollars if I ain't mistaken") nor how 
much the Government is paying its present owner. 

Robert and his family have moved to Bullock County, where they are renting 
a one-horse farm — 26 acres of land, a house, and some open range for his cattle. 
He worked on the area for 2 months this fall ("it caught me up a little on my 
debts"). He has not moved to strange territory. 

"The man I stay with married the daughter of the man I used to stay with," 
he grinned. 

Moody had been running a 2-horse farm before and, according to several 
white men around the courthouse, was accounted a substantial farmer. He listed 
for moving: 1 mule, 3 beef cows, 11 hogs, 18 goats, 20 chickens, 900 bundles of 
fodder, 40 bushels of corn, and furniture enough for a 4-room house. He moved 
25 miles and received a grant of $50. 

Case XIV 

Sam Howard is a man in his early forties, powerfully built, a broad-jawed, 
intelligent appearing Negro. He is a farmer, a trucker and, with his brother, 
contracts for and builds small residences. This Sunday morning he was driving 
up the road in his pick-up truck. 

Sam operated a 100-acre farm that originally belonged to his father. After his 
father's death he bought out five brothers and sisters, who were scattered from 
Brunswick to Baltimore, and farmed the place with one brother who remained 
on the old place. He grew cotton, some tobacco and, of late, had gone into the 
truck-farming business, peddling his own stuff to local markets. 

When he first heard about the area and the fact that it might possibly get his 
place he scrambled out and found himself more land — 85 acres with a house on it, 
10 miles from his old home. For this he promised to pay $2,000, and had enough 
cash on hand to meet all except $300 of the bill. Some of this money has come 
from the few weeks' work he got on the area and from extra carpenter work he and 
his brother have done during the last year or so, since carpenters have been hard 
to find. 

The old place has not been appraised. "They give us until January 1st to get 
out," he said, "but I'm not going to leave until they come look at what I've got. 
A man'd be a fool to go off and leave it. If it'd burn down I wouldn't have any 
way in the world to prove what I had * * *." 

A great many peop'e are looking for land, he said, both Negroes and whites. 
The trouble is that land has gone "way out of sight." Many of his Negro friends 
have bargained for pieces, and are paying a great deal too much for them. "If 
the Government (defense) work shuts down in about a year they'll lose it." 


Case XV 

D. L. Purcell worked a small tract next to M. W. Glissen that belongs to his 
wife. When the condemnation was rumored he started looking around. He 
found land had doubled in price. The reasons: 

1. "Folks knowed there'd be a big demand for farms when we had to clear 
out * * *." 

2. "Prices for farm stuff are about double what they was last year this time. 
It looks like farming's coming back. It's natural a man would think more of his 
land * * *." 

Purcell, too, wondered if he wouldn't be able to make another crop here. His 
cousin, E. L. Purcell, had a turpentine tract near the town of Willie (center of the 
area). When the order came to pull up stakes a year ago, E. L. closed up business. 
Then they didn't take the place until late in July. This means he missed almost 
a whole season. 

"We don't know anything," Purcell kept insisting. "All we hear's what some 
other fellow says he thinks * * *." He thought the least the Government 
could do was to tell them something for certain. 

"A man farming in this country ought to know right now if he's going to farm 
next year * * *." 


Montgomery, Ala., May 191^2. 

A number of factors have changed since preparation of our original statement for 
this committee describing displacement of farm families in the Southeastern 
States and programs for their service undertaken by the Farm Security Ad- 

Preparation of our exhibits was begun before Pearl Harbor. The word, the 
national thinking, has changed from defense to war. New appraisals and pro- 
grams have been projected. The national effort has been accelerated and many 
plans have been transformed from their original design. This supplementary 
statement is made necessary to explain the changes wrought in several details of 
the original report. 

However, these changes are indeed but changes in details and in method. 
The fundamental story remains unaltered, the fundamental thesis is the same; 
namely, that the conditions for which we seek means of alleviation are not new, 
not the result of upheavals due to the war or to pre-war concerns. And because 
they involve forces which are the same in kind, if not in degree, as those with 
which our sociologists, economists, and other observers of the southern scene 
have long been aware, the truth is no less evident that we must look to programs of 
long and enduring effect. The goals are: 1, stabilization; 2, rehabilitation. In 
short, none of the conclusions described in the original statement have been 

Your committee is aware of the uncertainties which at this moment beset the 
relocation program. This program has been placed in the hands of the Farm 
Security Administration, as the action agency principally endowed with function 
and authorization to bring about human adjustments in the farm field. A 
question as to method was posed by the Comptroller General early in March, 
and pending its settlement, the program has not been developed greatly beyond 
the stage described in the original report ^to this committee. 

Other incidental changes have occurred because of factors which include: 
(1) Reorganization and centralization of housing programs; (2) limitation of ex- 
penditures for construction; (3) revision of plans for land acquisition by the Army. 
Adjustment to these changes may be made without substantial revision of the 
program as originally conceived. 

In spite of the changing picture and changing regulations, the experience of 
the Farm Security Administration in the field under discussion continues to be 
invoked for service in connection with war migrations. An illustration may be 
recited as follows: 


A 300-unit trailer camp and a dormitory accommodating 490 single men are 
being built by the Farm Security Administration at Mobile, Ala., to house skilled 
mechanics employed at Brookley Field, southeastern Air Corps maintenance 
and repair depot for Army planes. 


The housing shortage in Mobile is already acute, and the population of the 
town has nearly doubled. Single rooms rent for $25 or $30 a month, and apart- 
ments average $60 or $70, but there are none available. 

Acting as agents for the Federal Public Housing Authority, part of the stop- 
gap defense housing program, the Farm Security Administration received funds 
for the Mobile project from the urgent defense appropriations account, authorized 
to erect temporary shelters for workers in national defense activities. 

Construction on the camp was begun May 4 and it is expected to be ready for 
use by July 1. 

Rental rates for the 100 Government-owned and 200 private-owned trailers 
will be $7 a week for the standard type, including lights, water, and janitor service, 
and $8 a week for the expandable family type. Dormitory rates will be from $3.50 
to $5 a week for a double room, and from $5 to $7 a week for a private room, 
including linen, blankets, and other similar hotel services. All applications must 
be certified by the personnel officer of Brookley Field, as well as the camp manager. 


Another illustration of the adaptation of the Farm Secutity program to meet 
changing conditions is to be found at Ozark, Ala., where a triangular division 
camp was projected. As described in the original volume presented to this com- 
mittee, approximately 70,000 acres had been surveyed, on which lived 296 families 
to be moved. The plans were revised, and only 40,000 acres were utilized. The 
number of families to be moved was reduced to 216. 

Of these 216 families, 155 have already moved, and plans have been made for 
31 more, leaving 30 vet to be relocated. In the group of 155 families who have 
actually moved, 63 made their own arrangements for funds and 92 received rural 
rehabilitation grants. 

Fourteen families who moved out of this defense area bought farms, 99 leased 
farms, 39 leased houses, and 3 bought houses. 

Ninety families had to move by February 24 from the 10,000-acre construction 
area in Dale County. 

These families, classified by type of farming or occupation, before and after 
relocation are as follows: 

After relocation : 

Rent on halves 31 

Owners 10 

Squatters 2 

Laborers 4 

Cash renters 24 

Share renters 

Work at sawmill 

Work for Work Projects Ad- 
ministration 2 

Live with children 1 

Purchased houses 3 

Have public work 13 

Sixty-five other families were relocated by March 28. These were divided 
into — 

Before relocation: 

Rented on halves 30 

Owners 28 

Squatters 6 

Laborers 6 

Cash renters 13 

Share renter 1 

Worked at sawmill 1 

Worked for Work Projects Ad- 
ministration or other public 


Live with children 1 

Before relocation: 

Owners 11- 

Halves 22 

Public work 7 

Work Projects Administration. 1 

Day laborer 5 

Cash renter 19 

After relocation: 

Owner 2 

Halves 32 

Public- work 8 

Work Projects Administration. 1 

Day laborer 4 

Cash renter 18 

Thirty families are yet to be relocated. 


In renewing the original discussion, the progress of Farm Security's food pro- 
duction program should be related. This program involves a material, measur- 
able contribution of Farm Security to the Nation's war effort, outsideof its value 
in social and economic improvement of borrower-participants and its value in 
creating new sources of cash income, new means of emancipation from the stifling 
one-crop system of southern tradition, new outlook and standards of living. 


In the original report there is an extended description (p. 16 — A Program for 
Living) of the accelerated activity in food production by low-income farmers 
of the southeast through the Farm Security Administration food for defense 
program. This program has been enlarged, its goals twice revised, since it 
started less than a year ago. A measure of its present expectations may be seen 
from this recent report of results from the original food for defense program 
(from the Montgomery Advertiser and press service dispatches of April 30) : 

"Small farmers in the Southeast have increased their egg production in the past 
year from a negligible amount, sold or traded by the dozen to 'rolling stores/ 
to a major farm enterprise producing 500,000 dozen weekly. 

"In reports completed yesterday, farm management specialists of the Farm 
Security Administration estimated that 56,000 small farmers cooperating with 
the program in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina, were now getting 
an average of more than 800,000 eggs a day from chickens raised in the food for 
defense program initiated last spring. At an average of only 23 cents a dozen, 
they pointed out that this meant $15,000 value in food for home use and in cash 
sales for these low-income farmers daily. 

" 'Results of last year's program definitely point to poultry as a permanent 
enterprise in this region,' said Hubert R. Bailey, regional chief of the cooperative 
division. 'The prospect is bright for the South's becoming a major national source 
of supply.' " 

This accomplishment in only one of several phases of the war food production 
program shows plainly the possibilities of a new day in southern farming which 
have been pointed through the Farm Security plan of credit, expert direction and 
supervision of small farmers who otherwise have no access to these things. 


Since the cow-hog-hen program of the food for defense program of 1941 was 
set into motion, the Farm Security Administration has enlarged the food produc- 
tion goals of its participating families by 300 percent in the case of cane and 
sorghum, 100 percent in year-round gardens, 100 percent in rice and wheat pro- 
duction for home use, 200 percent in peanut production, and increases no less 
impressive as to other commodities. 

It has been demonstrated that the widest field for increase in food production 
lies in the small farms. The Atlanta Journal of April 1 points out: 

"Consider the work of the Federal Security Administration in fortifying the 
productive capacity of farmers who, without such assistance and guidance, could 
not hold their own, much less contribute to the Nation's emergency needs. 

"Their problem merges into that of a much larger group of low-income farmers 
who heretofore have not grown enough foodstuffs to supply their own wants. It 
is from this group, in the opinion of able observers, that most of the increase in 
food production so urgently needed for our armed forces and for our Allies must 
come. The large producer already has been working to capacity, and now the 
labor shortage and the difficulty of acquiring more machinery bar him from any 
great increase in his output. But if the rank and file of low-income farmers, 
numbering around 1,700,000, could turn their food-producing possibilities to 
maximum account, the result would be exceedingly important. Indeed, the De- 
partment of Agriculture estimates that they could provide 35 percent of the 
needed pork and lard, 40 percent of the eggs and 16 percent of the milk. These 
proportions might well mark the difference between success and failure in one of 
the most vital aspects of our war effort. Surely, there could be no better ex- 
penditure of time and means than in aiding such farmers to realize their oppor- 
tunity and their patriotic hope of serving the country through increased food 

"The same principle applies to the lowest income group, with whom the Farm 
Security Administration is concerned. These farmers, with the help of the 
Farm Security Administration, are becoming self-reliant and creative factors 
in the common weal. Once impoverished and distressed, they are now on the 
way to permanent security. They are steadily repaving the Government loans 
through which they got a new start in life; $200,000,000 of the total $574,000,000 
thus lent during the last 5 years has been returned to the Federal Treasury, while 
122,000 borrowers have repaid their loans in full. Evidently, the Farm Security 
Administration is doing a work of great consequence to the national welfare and to 
the war effort." 



One of the most effective implements with which the Farm Security Adminis- 
tration has undertaken to attack this problem of greater food production, greater 
self-sufficiency — and in the end, greater independence and democratic participa- 
tion — by the small farmer, is a workable marketing system. 

We may report advances toward this goal since the main report was written. 
These have been made principally through the organization of some 3,600 com- 
munity groups in the 4 States of Farm Security Administration's region 5 — ■ 
which include some 60,000 families, 300,000 persons, who have been drawn 
together for common planning, for discernment of common goals, and for con- 
venience in assembly and distribution of products to market. The problem of 
finding this market thus has been simplified and it was made easier to adopt the 
admirable machinery set up by the Agricultural Marketing Administration. In 
group action as fostered by the Farm Security Administration, the position of the 
small farmer has been strengthened a hundredfold. 


Several incidental observations in the original report are to be qualified. One 
of these touches upon the 10-year lease program of the Farm Security Adminis- 

At first it was feared that increase in land and commodity values might have 
the effect of deterring landowners from entering into long-term leases (see pp. 7 
and 8, main statement). However, the picture is changing within itself. There 
is the prospect now of stabilization of prices. The sky is no longer the limit. 
Agriculture is in the national service, and the necessities of the hour have as of 
April 28 put an end to the speculative element. 

For another thing, it has been proved that much land and many habitations 
have fallen into a state of decline so great that few can overlook the need of 
restoring them as soon as possible, if the values are not to be lost entirely. 

Consequently, the effort to obtain 10-year leases is winning recognition and a 
degree of support that is gratifying. To make the longer tenure serve a construc- 
tive purpose, it was undertaken to write into each lease certain agreements of 
mutual obligation to make improvements — tenants to be compensated for im- 
provements which they apply, landlords to make other improvements (being 
secured in benefits from this outlay by the assurance of occupany and productive 

Approximately 700 10-year leases will be signed in the region this year. An 
example of their operation may be seen in 148 that were consummated in Alabama. 
The figures show that 69 provided for planting kudzu; 59 provided for poultry 
houses; 113 made provisions for fencing; 123 for sanitary improvement; 114 
planned to improve dwellings; 116 planned to improve barns; 118 for water 
improvement; 89 for terracing (under agreements usually where the landlord 
furnishes the seed and the fertilizer, and the tenant furnishes the work); 111 
provided for pasture improvement — seeding permanent pastures. 

Worthy of note in the above analysis is the fact that so many clients plan to 
plant or improve pastures and to put up fencing, which means that they are going 
into the livestock business. 

We have said a good bit about 10-year leases, because that is the period of time 
we have been working on — but what we mean is a period of tenure long enough 
so that the people will be interested in doing things and the landlord in having 
them done. The program was begun last summer. We have made a fine begin- 
ning, and supervision will see that the enterprises are carried through right. 

Pertinent to a discussion of the complete aims of the Farm Security Adminis- 
tration in the field of stabilization and rehabilitation, to which both this agency 
and your committee are dedicated, seems to be the following bit of documentary 
evidence. It comes from a report by an Farm Security Administration home 
management supervisor in Coffee County, Ala.: 

"Out of a house that leaked, had no screens, no outbuildings, and that was 
very open, the Norris family moved into a ceiled house, screened, with more 
rooms and plenty of outbuildings. Mrs. Norris did not keep a very clean house, 
but since she moved, her house is very clean. She said the other day, 'Since I 
have moved, I have better heart to keep my house clean. When you have 
nothing to work for, vou just don't care.' " 

I ask your indulgence to repeat : When you have nothing to work for, you just 
don't care. 


When you have nothing to fight for, when you are without hope, you might 
find it hard to distinguish between Roosevelt and Hitler, between God and 
Mammon, between the dominion of the spirit and the fleshpots of the Pharaohs. 


Air. Arnold. When you appeared before the committee in Mont- 
gomery in 1940 we were studying migration of the destitute. We 
had undertaken to learn what factors were at work causing people to 
leave their farms. We were subsequently called on to investigate 
defense migration in the Southeast. Do you think there are the same 
factors at work causing such migration that were in force in 1940? 


Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; definitely. Migration after all is nothing 
new with us in the South. For instance, from, 1920 to 1930 more than 
3,000,000 people moved from the South to other areas. There has 
been a constant migration from the South, and conditions like these 
through which we are passing at the present time just simply acceler- 
ate the movement. We have found, as a result of a survey of these 
four States, that it has a direct relation to the security of the people 
on the farms. The ones who are insecure are the ones who migrate. 

The Chairman. Of course, migration of destitute citizens is caused 
by many factors, but the chief one is, as you say, a lack of economic 
security. But there are a good many other factors. 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; and this present situation is just one more 

Mr. Arnold. Of course this committee, from its investigations all 
over the country, strongly believes in the work that has been done and 
should now be done by the Farm Security Administration. We feel 
that that Administration can do more to keep these people on the 
farm than any other agency of the Government. 

What has the low income farm group been able to contribute to the 
food-for-victory program? 


Mr. Morgan. Of course Farm Security, especially in this particular 
region, is especially proud of the contribution that has already been 
made by that low-income group. Last spring when the Secretary of 
Agriculture attempted to strengthen the prices of certain basic com- 
modities that were needed for our Allies, we put on a drive immediately 
with the borrowers in this region to increase their production of those 
items. For instance, we urged some 78,000 borrowers that we have 
in these four States to enlarge their production — we made loans to 
them to put in more chickens, more hogs, and more cows. Some 
fifty-odd-thousand of those families bought 5,000,000 baby chicks, 
20,000 brood sows, and 20,000 cows. And as a result of that drive, 
projected last year with this particular group, there has been a tre- 
mendous increase in the production of eggs and of chickens and of 
milk and of pigs. And it shows to us very clearly that that is the 
group that has really got to make the largest contribution to the 
increased production of food, because it, after all, is the available 
farm labor supply — in that group is your largest reserve of farm labor. 



A study of the Bureau of Agricultural Economics shows that the 
average farm family has about 565 man-days of labor. The average 
farmer in the South with 10 acres of cotton and 20 acres of corn, as 
we used to say, requires 198 man days of that labor. So, there is your 
reserve of surplus labor, and it is the only reservoir of surplus labor 
we have. And the only way we are going to get near the food pro- 
duction called for is to so design our program to utilize those additional 
man-days. I think definitely that the greater percentage of the pro- 
duction of food for the winning of this war has got to be done by the 
low-income group. The large operator is already operating his farm 
pretty close to its maximum efficiency. There is no surplus of day 
labor that he can draw on if he did have additional acres to plant. 
There is no additional machinery he could get, as they did in the last 
World War, where they could buy more tractors and turn over more 
land. Therefore, I think this is the group that must produce the food. 

Mr. Arnold. The large raiser of livestock hasn't many surplus 
days or man-hours to greatly increase his herd? 

Mr. Morgan. That is right. 

Mr. Arnold. It is very interesting to have those figures on man- 
days available on that group of farms. 

Mr. Morgan. In the statement I have filed is a chart showing 
those man-days available by months. We show that for a farm plan 
requiring 10 acres of cotton, 20 acres of corn, 5 acres of oats, and 5 
acres of hay, only 198 man-days of the 565 available are used. If you 
change the plan just a little whereby there would be 6 acres of cotton, 
3 acres of tobacco, 20 acres of corn, 5 acres of hay, and 5 acres of oats 
and subsistence for the workstock, you would be able to utilize 
276 clays of the 565. Then, with a still more broadened plan, for 7 
acres of cotton, 2 acres of tobacco, 5 acres of peanuts, 15 acres of corn 
and beans, 5 acres of oats, 5 acres of soybeans, 100 hens, and 4 cows, 
you can utilize 435 of that 565 man-days of labor available. 

Mr. Arnold. Those 78,000 clients necessarily had to have addi- 
tional loans, the ones who increased production? 


Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; we made fifty-odd-thousand of these loans 
at an average of something over $80 per family, We said to these 
families: "First, we insist you buy 50 additional baby chicks. Then 
in addition to' that, we insist that you either buy a brood sow or 2 
dairy cows, or, if conditions are such that you couldn't handle a 
brood sow or 2 dairy cows, get another 50 chickens," which would 
make 100 chickens. The trouble in that program was we started in 
April. They bought those baby chicks, 5,000,000 of them, in May. 
May is late for chickens in the South. There is an old saying that 
May chickens are about half dead when they are hatched; There 
were people who said, "You are putting these chickens out with a 
group of people that won't take care of them." And yet actually 
less than 15 percent of those chickens were lost, more than 85 percent 
of them were raised. 

Then of course the thing that we immediately faced, and which 
we must face in any movement of this kind, was that 90 days after 


those baby chicks were bought, there were some 2,000,000 cocks that 
had to be sold. They started moving off at 17, 18, and 19 cents a 
poimd, and then after a few weeks the price began to drop down, 
down to about 13 or 14 cents. We learned a lot of lessons. We 
found out, for instance, the big buyers of chickens and eggs knew 
more about what we had out there to sell than we knew ourselves. 
Anyway, the price started down, and we said: "We won't let these 
people sacrifice this stuff, because they have gone out into this thing 
so whole-heartedly, with such patriotism, eager to help do something 
for their country. We will simply take these chickens and put them 
in cold storage and hold them until they bring a satisfactory price." 
And we moved 40,000 of those chickens into storage, and the price 
was soon back up to 19 cents a pound. So that is not only teaching 
people to do something they never did before, but it is also teaching 
a lot of us a lot about marketing, which must necessarily go with a 
change in products. 

Mr. Arnold. That is very interesting. What do you believe the 
demands of the war program will do toward assisting low-income 
farmers to rehabilitate themselves and become self-sufficient? Of 
course, what you have just outlined is a great thing toward that end. 

Mr. Morgan. That's right. Of course, we have a long way to go. 
The 1940 census showed that 49}£ percent of all the farmers in America 
produced less than $600 worth of farm products, not cash, but cash 
trade, and consumption, 65 percent of all the farmers in this region, 
or 73 percent, Mr. Sparkman, in Alabama, produced less than $600 
worth per year for sale, for trade, and for home consumption. The 
war production program is going to help point the way to a more 
diversified program and to more income. But then it has still a long 
way to go. 

The Chairman. It does indicate that the Government can depend 
on the little fellow? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. It might be interesting for you to know, if you 
don't know it, that there are about 165,000 manufacturing plants in 
the United States, large and small. 97 percent of those factories 
employ less than 250 men. One-third of them employ 20 or less. 
That is a little outside of what we are talking about, but it does show, 
as your testimony indicates, we still depend on the little fellow. 

Mr. Arnold. The demands of the war production will aid your 
borrowers in getting their loans in better shape? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. The committee will appreciate your opinion and any 
figures you may have that would reflect the farm labor situation in 
the Southeastern States. 

Mr. Morgan. That is what we have been talking about, in a way. 
But this whole thing is tied into that question of farm labor supply. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you have need in your area for an enlarged num- 
ber of seasonal workers? 

shortage of surplus labor 

Mr. Morgan. There is, of course, quite a bit of seasonal employ- 
ment in Florida. But other than in Florida, most of our employment 
here is the labor that is on the farm doing the farming work through- 


out the year. That isn't true, however, in Baldwin County in Ala- 
bama. This survey we have recently made points out this: That so 
many people talk about a shortage of labor when they are not always 
talking about a shortage of labor; they are talking about a shortage 
of surplus labor. There are people operating seasonal crops that feel 
there is a tremendous labor shortage unless there is a reserve that 
they can reach out and get and use when they want it and then lay 
it down and it will stay there somehow until they want it again. 

Mr. Sparkman. What you mean is failure to utilize available labor 
to the fullest capacity? 

Mr. MorCxAN. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Did you read this item in this morning's paper from 
Bridgeton, N. J.? 

Mr. Morgan. No, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. I will read it to you: 

The Federal Government pledged all possible help Thursday in an effort to 
halt the spoilage of millions of dollars' worth of war crops as a result of a harvest- 
time farm-labor shortage in South Jersey. 

Terming the situation "a Bataan on the farm front," Regional Director J. H. 
Wood, of the Farm Security Administration said "Someone, presumably the 
Farm Placement Bureau, may have to transport migratory workers from the 
South * * * and we may be able to finance that movement." 

Hundreds of acres of asparagus, needed by the Army and Navy, already have 
gone to waste. Some growers are canceling contracts to grow tomatoes, a lend- 
lease commodity. 

A dirt road scraper was sent out Wednesday over the beds of Kenneth Roberts, 
president of the Cumberland County Asparagus Growers Association, to cut down 
overgrown and valueless stalks. Roberts estimated his loss at $185 a day and 
expressed belief his experience was typical. 

Some families — including women, aged folks, and high-school pupils — are 
working until 2 and 3 a. m. sorting and bundling stalks they pick by day. 

The labor shortage was attributed by Wood to the draft, high wages in defense 
industries, tire rationing, and impending gasoline restrictions. 

Wood said it may be a hint of what may develop in other northeastern agri- 
cultural districts dependent upon migratory labor. 

"There will be many other battles on the farm front throughout the Nation this 
year," he added. "With proper supervision we may win most of them." 

Wood said the Farm Security Administration would "expedite" the construction 
of three migratory labor camps already being built in the south Jersey area. 

Mr. Morgan. I presume Mr. Wood had in mind the migrant labor 
that is at present employed in vegetable fields in south Florida. Mr. 
Wood is thoroughly familiar with the South and the possibilities of 
getting labor. For 4 years he was assistant regional director in this 

But I would say that there is no surplus farm labor in the South at 
the present time, other than those that are working in the vegetable 
areas in Florida, that could be so moved. 

Mr. Arnold. It would look serious? 

Mr. Morgan. It is serious, and in that connection I want to say 
there are several of those migratory camps. They are operating them 
in Jersey, and this winter when the vegetable season comes in south 
Florida, we will use those same mobile camps in south Florida. 

Mr. Sparkman. When you say there is no surplus farm labor 
available down here, you don't mean, of course, that there isn't any 
labor available which ordinarily migrates through the East and North- 
east and all over. That is still available? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; but not as much as there has been. They 
are in Florida now, and the growing season in Florida is about over and 


they are moving away from there. The growers in Florida say they 
are short of labor, but a rather close study by the Farm Labor Place- 
ment showed there was sufficient migrant labor to take care of the 
seasonal work, but not that reservoir of surplus labor. It is like 
wanting to have a nice surplus in the bank as an extra reservoir. 
And, of course, that is a great deal harder on the laborers than it is on 
the dollars in the banks. But there wasn't as much migrant labor in 
south Florida this winter as there has been in years previous. 

Mr. Arnold. Getting back to the farmers leaving the farms — what 
type farmer is migrating? Is it the head of the family who is taking 
his family with him? Or is it the young male members of the family? 
Do you think it will be only temporary or will it be permanent? 


Mr. Morgan. It goes back to the thing I mentioned in the begin- 
ning, about the question of security. It is the very insecure families 
who are moving, attracted by defense jobs, and who move around 
places like the arsenal here. There are a great many more where 
some member of the family is going off to work and the others of the 
family are staying, trying to carry on and hold the farm together. 
That is especially true if they have some interest in the farm. We 
have found that not as many of the people on our loan program are 
leaving the farm and going to defense work as of their neighbors who 
are not on our program. There are several reasons for that. One 
reason is we have concentrated on trying to improve the tenure of 
the tenant farmer in the South. Several years ago we made it a 
policy that we would not make a rehabilitation loan unless a man 
had a written lease — something almost unheard of in the South. 
From there, we began working on to 3- to 5-year leases. Today a lot 
of our borrowers are making 10-year leases with the landlord. Those 
longer-term leases carry with them certain responsibilities of the land- 
lord to the farm and the tenant to the farm. Those people with 
longer-term leases are not picking up and leaving the farm and moving 
to these congested areas. There may be some member of the family 
moving, going off and getting work and coming back. I have sub- 
mitted in my report some figures which show very definitely that the 
movement has a direct relation to the type of tenure or security that 
the tenants have back home. 

Mr. Arnold. Do those figures show whether the average size farm 
in Alabama will be materially changed during the war period? 

Mr. Morgan. It has been materially changed in the last 10 years 
before the war, and those tendencies are still at work. 

Mr. Arnold. Has the Farm Security relocation program been able 
to return to the land the people affected by the Government purchas- 
ing program? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes and no. We have undertaken to help each one 
of those families find some solution for their problem when they were 
displaced. I was talking to a gentleman here in the room this morn- 
ing, and he was telling me in this particular area here he had three 
families living in one house, He had to get them off the area and 
couldn't find farms for them for the moment; so he actually has three 
families living in one house. 



We have felt in this problem of relocation that we had a responsi- 
bility, given to us by the Congress, to aid destitute farm families — ■ 
and certainly that type folks are destitute who have been displaced 
and have left their home and everything as a result of the taking of 
these areas. So we have moved in, and while we have to make tem- 
porary arrangements in many places, we don't think we have done 
all the job, and we are going to continue to work with them until we 
get them adjusted. 

Some of those families, of course, have gone into defense work, and 
in other cases it has been necessary for us to purchase quite a bit of 
land in order to relocate those people. That is not just as simple as 
it sounds. When you have in an area less than 30 acres of land per 
farm family, and 500 families there must be moved, the chances are 
if you went out and bought a tract of land that would take care of 
500 families you would move 500 families off that land to make room 
for the other 500. What you have to do in cases of that kind is find 
tracts not completely saturated with farmers, bearing in mind the 
problem of those people already on the land. I think we have done all 
it was possible to do in that particular tiling, and it is still a tremen- 
dously big job. There are some 5,000 families that have been dis- 
placed in the fifth region, 25,000 people completely uprooted and taken 
away from their homes and, in some cases, as in this county, from some 
of the best land in the whole county; and with a real scarcity of good 
land you can see the problem it presents. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you have figures reporting farm income for this 
past year as against farm income for 1940? 


Mr. Morgan. I don't have that. I have before me something 
showing the increase in income for those people that are on our 
program. But that doesn't reflect the farmers as a whole. 

We naturally think a great deal of this increase is a result of super- 
vision and guidance in farm practices and changing these farm plans, 
as shown in those three examples I gave you awhile ago, rather than 
an over-all increase. Of course the gross increase this past year has 
been just what the increase in the commodity prices was, because 
there was practically no difference in the amount of production last 
year. I think there will be a considerable increase in 1942 in the low- 
income group, certainly with our borrowers, because of, for instance, 
in this region, the increase in peanuts. Our borrowers have increased 
more than 100 percent their acreage in peanuts, and then there is 
this chicken production and things of that kind. But, while there has 
been an increase in gross income as a result of the increase in prices, 
there has been some increase in net income. I think that is borne 
out by the fact that last year in this region our collections were about 
$4,000,000. This year they were $9,000,000. That shows that they 
are getting more in cash. 

The Chairman. You have about 70,000 loans? 


Mr. Morgan. No, sir; about 100,000 loans. 
The Chairman. 100,000 loans at $80 


Mr. Morgan. They are not all the same amount. We have about 
$100,000,000 in loans of all types. We have loaned $65,000,000 to 
rehabilitate the borrowers since the inception of the program. Of 
that $32,000,000, or approximately half, has matured. 

Mr. Arnold. How long has that program been in force? 

Mr. Morgan. In 1935. 

Mr. Arnold. The appropriation was $125,000,000 last year? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; of which w T e used about twelve to fourteen, 
almost fourteen, million dollars in this region. But a great many of 
our loans are based on a 5-year repayment schedule and a great many 
have not matured. $32,000,000 of the $65,000,000 have matured, 
and these people have paid $29,000,000 of that to the United States 

The Chairman. That means that about 82 percent of these loans 
were repaid. 

Mr. Arnold. That showing will get better? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; some better. We have one thing in our 
records which you can, of course, appreciate, and that is that our 
unpaid maturities are carried on our records. We have no way of 
forgiving a debt to the Government; that can only be done by the Con- 
gress. So we have to carry our unpaid maturities, and that over a 
period of years amounts to quite a bit of money. I don't know as 
that makes a great deal of difference, but there ought to be some way 
of retiring the losses, such as a commercial establishment has. 

Mr. Arnold. What way do you have of recovering if he has some 

Mr. Morgan. We, of course, repossess the chattels if nobody in 
the family can carry it. But any time you do that — well, you know 
what happens when you try to liquidate a bank. You know a going 
concern is a different tiling. And, after all, the basis of this whole 
thing is character loan, too, because we are lending this money to 
people who can't get help anywhere else. I think it is a very encour- 
aging showing. 

Mr. Arnold. Will you give the committee a brief outline of Farm 
Security work in providing defense housing? What is the story in 
the Huntsville area? 

defense housing program 

Mr. Morgan. As the' defense program developed, due to our 
experience in housing as a result of our tenant purchase program and 
other building programs in connection with projects, and also in the 
operation of these community projects after they had been built, the 
Housing Coordinator requested us in certain areas to provide housing 
for the defense workers. There has not been as much of that in 
region 5 as in some other sections of the country. We were requested 
to put in a trailer camp in Huntsville to help meet the situation here. 


And we are operating a trailer camp here on the outskirts of the city 
with about 400 trailers. That work was done with defense money 
that was allocated to us by the Housing Coordinator. And we have 
been recently requested to build some trailers and dormitories in 
Mobile, and the contract is being let for that. That is the extent of 
our defense work in housing in this area. 


One thing that we are very much concerned about is that in south 
Florida, at Homestead, 40 miles south of Miami, an area where con- 
ditions are frightful, we have just completed two migratory camps, 
and the Army has moved about 1,000 soldiers into one, and the Pan 
American Airways has taken over the other. Of course, we want to 
help in any way we can in our war effort, but with all the funds 
available and all the priorities the War Department has, I just hate 
to see those people living like they have to, instead of in those houses. 

I don't know how much further that will go on in our migratory 
program, whether they will see fit to requisition other camps or not. 
If they do, it will certainly have a bad effect on our mobile labor force. 

The Chairman. Mr. Arnold is very interested in that problem. 
But- it might interest you to know that while this committee has 
traveled 70,000 miles, from north to south, from east to west, there 
is one agency in the Federal Government concerning which we never 
heard a single word of criticism, and that is the Farm Security 
Administration. Our record constitutes 7 or 8 million words, and you 
can search it in vain for any criticism of the Farm Security Adminis- 

I am of the opinion that one of the finest things in this country 
today is the rehabilitation loan program. Now, as you say, those loans 
are given to people who can't go to the bank and get them. Last 
year we were going to recommend $150,000,000 for those loans, and 
we got back and found it had been cut to $100,000,000— $25,000,000 
less than in 1940. We never let up. We went to the President and 
to the Senate and, as you know, we got it restored. Now that is one 
of the solutions, a partial solution of migration of citizens — that keeps 
them home. 

I noticed the President the other clay in a message wanted to raise 
it $25,000,000 more. We say the point is simply this: That in this 
all-out war we cannot forget the morale of our own people. That is, 
you cannot divorce civilian morale from Army and Navy morale. 


What I would like to know from you — you say the average loan is 
$80 .' 

Mr. Morgan. That is just for this food for victory. 

The Chairman. Where did you get that formula — did you get it 
from Washington, that you should loan $80 for chickens and so on? 

Mr. Morgan. No, sir; we had made our farm plans, our normal, 
loans for the operation of the farm. This was something over and 
above our normal operation. Ycu see in December, January, Febru- 
ary, and March we had made our normal loans, and it was after that 
that these food for victory loans were made and they averaged about 


■$80 apiece. Our rehabilitation loans probably average about $400. 
I had occasion recently to tabulate our loans in this region, and 94 
percent of them were less than $1,000. 

The Chairman. What interest do they pay? 

Mr. Morgan. Five percent. Speaking of morale — I know this is 
a rather voluminous statement that is filed with the committee, but 
I would like especially to call your attention to some 40 or 50 case 
statements at the end reporting what the people say about this, about 
everything, about their dislocation problems, about their reactions to 
the whole thing. Some of it is critical. Some of it is good. 

Mr. Sparkman. I haven't been able to find it. 

Mr. Morgan. Here it is. That copy isn't set up right. On page 
12080, Mr. Sparkman, you will find the Huntsville area, and you will 
find names that you know, no doubt, people telling their story about 
what has happened in this district here. 

Mr. Sparkman. I notice you talk about Palm Beat. I thought it 
was Pond Beat. 

Mr. Morgan. My guess is you're right, but that is the human story, 
right in those records there. 

The Chairman. We are glad to have it. 


Mr. Sparkman. With reference to this relocation, now to what 
extent are you still carrying on that work, following the ruling of the 
General Accounting Office? 

Mr. Morgan. Actually we stopped everything except to the extent 
of money that had already been advanced to relocation corporations. 
We didn't have enough money in the banks to finish the construction 
that had already been started. But with that, plus the money we 
had in the old Rural Rehabilitation Corporations that were set up 
under the Relief Act back in relief days before there was even a 
Resettlement Administration, we could actually liquidate without 
calling on the Treasury for more money; so we have gone ahead and 
parked time on that. I am very hopeful, however, Mr. Congress- 
man, that there is a bright day ahead. 

Mi\ 5 PARKMAN - It is absolutely necessary that some governmental 
agency function m that field? 



Mr. Morga n - Absolutely. I guess that for the sake of having 
■everybody see tne need of that, if the Farm Security Administration 
had just sat d( ,wn an d said it was no responsibility of ours, and all 
these people hi l d been dumped off these areas and with all the dis- 
turbance that would have been created as a result of it, then somebody 
would have said, "Somebody just must do something about it." 
But instead of that, we moved in there. We felt "here are displaced 
farm families— here's what Congress has given us a mandate to do." 
And we move-l m an d did it, and as a result not much notice was 
taken of it. 

Mr. Sparkman- Just recently, following a study made by this 
•committee of the enemy alien situation on the west coast, there was 

60396—42 ~Pt- 32 H 


set up a relocation authority for the purpose of settling these Japanese. 
You think, if there is a duty on our country to resettle the Japanese,, 
that certainly we should resettle our own people who are moved out 
from war plant areas? 

Mr. Morgan. Absolutely. I think it is tragic for so many of these 
families, because of the spirit with which they have met the thing. 
They said, "If this is what I must do to contribute to the war effort,, 
all right." But certainly the Government should do everything it 
could to make the shock as little as possible. 

Mr. Sparkman. Let me ask you something about the increased food 
production for the war. It is your opinion that most of it must be 
done by the small farmer. And we believe that. As a matter of 
fact, this committee, as a committee, went before the Appropriations 
Committee when appropriations were being considered for the Farm 
Security Administration, and we urged that that not be cut, and our 
argument was that the increase in food production must be made by 
the small farmer, that the farmer with 100 cows can't double his herd,, 
but that the farmer with 1 cow can add another cow. Of course that 
bears out the statement you made of full utilization of available labor. 

I was impressed recently with a letter that came into your office 
and was reproduced in the Huntsville Times, and I placed it in the 
Congressional Record. It was written by a woman client of the 
Farm Security Administration, and, as I recall, the editorial heading 
was, "I have Pearl Harbor Rote in my Heart," and it showed the- 
increase in food production made on that little farm. 

Mr. Morgan. I want to add that this woman has a bedridden 
husband. She has operated that farm herself. She has supported 
her family largely through the production of vegetables, canning them, 
and selling them on the curb maiket at Tuscaloosa. And the post- 
script to that letter said: "I will even cook one meal a day for my 
family and give the other two to Uncle Sam." 

Mr. Sparkman. You say the average land available per farm 
family is 30 acres of tillable land in Alabama? 

Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I have noticed around in this country, in connec[; on . 
with land with which I am more familiar, that a good bit of th e j an( j 
that hasn't been farmed for many years is being put into estivation. 
Is there much of that? 


Mr. Morgan. Yes, sir; but it doesn't make a very la r g e increase in 
the total number of acres. And I want to say, too, th^,t the thing we 
are talking about here is just a forerunner of what we have got to be- 
thinking about as a post-war proposition. We are certainly going to 
have a movement back to the land after the war anq a tremendous 
problem there. The land you are talking about may b e a little corner 
there or a little further up on the mountain side thert^ a nd all those 
acres have to be brought in. There must be some kind f program for 
reclamation of worn-out lands, of partially worn-out lards and eroded 
lands. And I am glad to say that people are thinking iiore seriously 
of that today than they did in the last World War. I he pe w hen that 


time comes we will be able to face those facts, but it is going to be a 
tremendous problem after the war. 

Mr. Sparkman. I wonder if you could give us the number of farm- 
tenant purchasers in this county in the program to date? 

Mr. Morgan. I think Mr. Lynn could answer that question for 

Mr. Lynn, (in audience). One hundred and sixteen. 

Mr. Sparkman. This has been one of the biggest programs in the 
whole set-up? 

Mr. Morgan. That is right. 

The Chairman. Of course, the post-war shock of this present war 
will be so much greater than the last war, won't it? 

Mr. Morgan. I think so. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much for the very valuable state- 
ment you have given us. 


Mr. Sparkman. Mr. Mitchell, I have read with interest the state- 
ment which you have submitted, and we will incorporate it into the 
record at this point. 


Manpower on the Land 

On August 15, 1940, I appeared at a hearing held by the Committee on Inter- 
state Migration at Montgomery, Ala. In my statement I referred to the Ten- 
nessee River Valley as a place where the displacement of farm labor was acute. 
I mentioned a conversation I had with a young farm boy here in Huntsville who 
told me he wanted to farm but could not get land because some 20 men owned all 
the land in the county and were farming it with tractors. 

Since that time, the Southern Tenant Farmers Union of which I am general 
secretary has built a strong organization in this State. We now have upward 
of 3,000 members organized in 6 counties in northern Alabama. The Alabama 
district council of the Southern Tenant Farmers Union is working closely with 
the American Federation of Labor on the problems created by the coming of war 

In early 1940, when I was in this section of Alabama, there were thousands of 
farm people who had lost their place on the land and for whom there was no place 
in the few industries then operating in the Tennessee Valley. Work Projects 
Administration work was about all that was available. Today there is a need for 
labor in the new industrial plants now in operation or in the process of construc- 
tion. Several thousand farmers have found work either permanently in the new 
industries and service trades or temporarily on construction jobs. Many small 
farmers, tenants, and sharecroppers who have a crop are also working on these jobs 
part time in town. Many of these farmers live on small hill farms near the river 
valley. Farm operation on the richer lands along the river is practically the same 
as reported to me by the young would-be farmer in Huntsville nearly 2 years ago. 
The large plantations are being worked by tractors and hired day labor though 
there are a few sharecroppers still employed. 

That there now exists a shortage of labor for the peak seasons of employment 
on the farms of this area as well as other sections of the South where war industries 
are in operation or in the process of construction is evident. However, all over 
the South the cry is being raised that we face a serious shortage of farm labor and 
that production goals under the Food for Freedom program are endagered. 

What has happened is that surplus labor normally available for farm work at- 
low rates of pay is disappearing. The Army has taken many of the younger men 
and others have found places in the war industries. The owners of the large 


cotton plantations who operate their farms with tractors and other improved 
machinery are accustomed to sending trucks into the towns and cities for cotton 
choppers and cotton pickers when extra labor is needed. These industrialized 
farm operators know that in order to get their crops cultivated and harvested 
they will have to pay a higher wage in wartime. 

I would not recommend that we draft women and children from the towns and 
•cities for farm work until we have mobilized the resources of the farmers we 
■already have on the land. Here in Alabama the Black Belt section has largely 
gone in for livestock raising and there are thousands of exsharecropper families 
left without crops. Most of these farm families are Negroes and there would be 
much to overcome in the migration of this excess farm population to areas where 
there is employment. One of the chief factors would be the desire of the Black 
Belt landlords to keep these people available as a source of cheap labor when 
needed. However it would be a healthy thing if some of these aristocrats on the 
worn out plantations down there had to go to work and earn their own living for 
a change. There are other sections of the South where the excess farm population 
ought to be encouraged to leave permanently. 

It must be understood that I do not recommend forcible removal of people 
but I know that if fair and reasonable wages and other conditions of employment 
are good these farm people would go where work is available if they were given 
proper direction. 


Of first importance in maintaining production of any type is the guaranty of 
a fair wage to labor. About a year ago the Southern Tenant Farmers Union 
caused to be introduced in Congress a bill to provide minimum wages for farm 
labor and to regulate other conditions of employment as a condition for securing 
agricultural benefit payments. This measure is based on provisions of the Agri- 
cultural Adjustment Act of 1938, sugar section. Hearings have been held by 
the Senate Education and Labor Committee and the measure is still pending. 
The bill provides a means of setting wage rates for farm labor after the holding 
of public hearings in the various regions of the United States. The bill is similar 
to a law enacted by the British Parliament during the last war to meet the need 
for increasing farm production. In each English county a wage board sets the 
minimum rates for employment on the land. It has worked exceedingly well 
during the present war especially since England has established a landworkers 
army composed partly of young people from the industrial areas. The imme- 
diate enactment of a federal law to put a bottom under farm labor wages in 
America is of paramount importance in meeting the present emergency for we 
too may have to set up our own American army of farm laborers. 

Also there is in the South a huge reserve of manpower whose services as pro- 
ducers can be better utilized. There are over 2,000,000 farm families who if 
they had the opportunity to do so could raise a large part of the food crops that 
are needed to feed the men in the armed services and those employed in the war 
industries. These families most of whom do not own the land upon which they 
live constitute America's greatest potential resources for agricultural production. 

These families, small farm owners as well as tenants and sharecroppers need 
both equipment and supervision to bring their productive capacity up to the 
extent that is needed today. The agency of Government charged with the re- 
sponsibility for mobilizing the resources of this large group of people is the Farm 
Security Administration. Depsite an outstanding record of achievement in the 
past few years, this agency's program may be drastically curtailed by Congress 
at a time when it should be extended. 


Chiefly responsible for the attempt to destroy the effectiveness of this agency 
is an organization, that maintains a powerful lobby in Washington, purporting 
to represent the interests of over 168,000 organized farmers in the 11 Southern 

We have just completed a survey of this organization and its methods of main- 
taining membership in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, and Mississippi. Our 
findings recently made public are contained in a report and a brief of affidavits and 
statements made by 100 farmers in these States which have been submitted to 
the Secretary of Agriculture with a request for an official investigation of the 
-activities of the American Farm Bureau in the South. 



Further it is my belief that if a report were made by the Department of Agri- 
culture on the participation by farmers in the Food for Freedom program it would 
be found that the low-income farm groups are the ones most willing to produce the 
needed food crops. Most of the larger plantations are geared to the production of 
cotton and have discouraged even the raising of gardens in the past. 

Over in eastern Arkansas I know that many of the plantation owners are not 
participating in the program for increasing food production. A sharecropper on 
one of these plantations made the following statement to one of our field organizers. 

That about the first of the year he was called on by a lady from the county 
Agricultural Adjustment Administration office and urged tosign up to raise 5 acres 
of peanuts under the program being sponsored by the Department of Agriculture. 
That he agreed to raise the peanuts provided his landlord would allow him any- 
thing out of the proceeds but that his landlord came to his house a few days later 
and told him that he would not permit anything but cotton and corn to be raised 
on his land and that he must notify the county official that no peanuts would be 
raised. Further the landlord said to the tenant that he didn't intend to have a 
damn thing to do with the Government program unless he was forced to do so and 
that if the sharecropper wanted to cooperate to get off the place and work for the 
Government and that the land would be worked by day labor in cotton and corn. 
The cropper also said that he did not have a garden and that the landlord refused 
to allow him to raise even sorghum for his own use. I am sure that there are 
thousands of other sharecroppers and tenants on cotton plantations all over the 
South who have had the same experience as the man in eastern Arkansas. 


In conclusion, I would like to recommend to the committee that Congress enact 
a law immediately to provide minimum wages and to regulate other conditions of 
employment on the land. That a survey be made of the farm labor needs both 
for regular employment on the farm and the peak seasonal needs in each locality, 
that in making such a survey that a distinction be made between industrialized 
farms and those owned by small farmers. That we set about supplying these 
needs by registering all farm people in each community distinguishing between 
those who are willing to move and those who are only available for employment 
locally. That these farm people be the basis of a volunteer American army of 
farm laborers and then where there is a demonstrated need for people from the 
towns and cities to go into the fields to cultivate and harvest crops that young 
workers out of schools and colleges as well as older persons be registered to supple- 
ment the work of farm laborers at wages set under a Federal minimum wage law. 

Further, the Department of Agriculture be required to make public the names 
of landowners in each county who are refusing to cooperate in the program of 
increasing production of needed food crops. 


Mr. Sparkman. You appeared before us in our Montgomery hear- 
ings in 1940, when we were studying primarily the migration of 
destitute citizens from State to State, and at that time the study was 
primarily concerned with agricultural workers who were migrating. 
Since then we have been given the mandate to study the same prob- 
lem, but with greater emphasis on the impact of the war program on 
shifting population. You testified at the healings at Montgomery 
that there were several economic factors at work causing increased 
migration of people, and that you were primarily concerned with 
migration of farm people. Do you believe the war effort in any way 
has affected the type and volume of that migration? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think it has increased it considerably. However, 
there are certain areas in some sections of the South which are possibly 
sources of more migration. 



Mr. Sparkman. Has there been any change in the type of this 
migration, which you say has been stepped up by the war program? 
Are those who are moving from State to State doing work on war 
plants, or are they still doing agricultural work? 

Mr. Mitchell. A large number of farm people are going into the 
areas where there are war industries. 

Mr. Sparkman. There is a shift now from farming to war industries? 

Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir; and seeking of employment on farms in 
other areas. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you think the war program will have a perma- 
nent effect on the size of farms and the type of tenure in the Southeast? 


Mr. Mitchell. I think that it will increase the tendency toward 
larger holdings of land. 

Mr. Sparkman. Just why do you believe that? Are the small land 
owners selling their farms? 

Mr. Mitchell. No; I don't think that is true, any more than the 
ordinary trend. But I think that these larger holdings will perhaps 
continue as they are, and the ordinary trend will go along as it is. 

Mr. Sparkman. Is there a definite trend toward larger holdings? 
I was of the opinion it was the other way around. 

Mr. Mitchell. In some areas perhaps it is. But it has been my 
observation that in areas, particularly where the richer land is located, 
it is towards increase of the size of these units. 

Mr. Sparkman. In those more fertile areas the holdings, histori- 
cally, have always been large? 

Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. They were settled that way and there have been 
no sales for generations? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think there have been quite a lot of sales. I am 
thinking of the Mississippi Valley region, where large tracts are coming 
under the ownership of individuals or of companies and corporations 
that farm them. 

The Chairman. I think there is no question about that in Iowa 
and Illinois and California — absentee owners holding thousands of 

Mr. Sparkman. I know it is true throughout those States, and I 
am simply questioning as to whether it is true here in this particular 
area. I suppose the census gives a good insight into that. 

Mr. Mitchell. I don't recall the census figures on farm ownership 
of any particular county in Alabama. I think they are quite revealing, 

Mr. Sparkman. We have asked all witnesses who have appeared 
before us to testify with reference to a certain problem about which 
we hear a great deal. I think a great part is in anticipation yet, but 
it is something with which we are concerned, and that is the anticipated 
or threatened labor shortage on the farms. 

Mr. Mitchell. I think, of course, in some areas, such as this 
defense area here, there is a present shortage of labor, especially for the 
peak season. 


Mr. Sparkman. Did you hear Mr. Morgan's testimony? 
Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Sparkman. Did you hear his explanation about the common 
understanding of labor shortage, that it wasn't really an actual short- 
age they were talking about, but it was a lack of a surplus? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think that this is exactly the way it is all over 
the South, that there is a shortage of surplus labor, labor that is nor- 
mally available for peak and seasonal work that the larger owners are 
accustomed to employing. For instance, at cotton-picking time, the 
larger owners go] into towns and cities to load their trucks with 
workers and bring them out into the fields. And I think they are 
going to have more difficulty in finding that surplus labor, since the 
younger people have either gotten jobs in industry or have been 
drafted. That surplus labor is going to be more difficult to find. 

Mr. Sparkman. It becomes very largely a matter of utilizing to 
the fullest capacity the present available labor? 

Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir; and I think it could be much better 
utilized, particularly small farmers, tenants, and farm workers. I 
think if their full capacity for production were used, or better utilized, 
we could reach many of the national agricultural production goals. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is a very strong argument for every induce- 
ment being given to the small farmer? 

Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. We must look to the small operating unit for the 
major portion of the increase in food production? 

Mr. Mitchell. That is true. I think if they were given the 
means and supervision, such as the Farm Security Administra- 
tion supplies, that they would be put in a position where they 
could really produce the crops that are needed during the war emer- 
gency. Most of those people are accustomed only to raising cotton 
and corn, and there are needs for other food crops, peanuts and things 
of that sort. These people can produce the crops. 

mobilization of farm labor force 

Mr. Sparkman. There are a great many people who are beginning 
to talk about the need eventually of drafting labor, drafting every- 
body, a universal mobilization of manpower for all purposes. Do 
you believe that we may come to the point where it may become neces- 
sary that we have a mobilized farm labor force, or where it may become 
necessary for us to draft people to do farm work? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think, of course, that will depend upon how long 
the war lasts. But it may well be possible that we will have to at 
least set up some sort of a volunteer farm labor force to meet the 
needs, such as in south Jersey, according to the statement that was 
read from the newspaper this morning, transferring people where there 
is no employment to areas where they are needed. I think we ought 
first to know what are the needs in each locality and the manpower that 
is available there. I think we ought to distinguish between the needs 
•of the industrialized farm and the small farm. My reason for saying 


that is that the industrialized farm needs more workers at peak seasons. 
And if the labor on small farms were registered — and there has 
always been land of swapping about of labor with them — these fellows 
might actually swap out their labor and continue their production 
without employing extra hired workers. 

Mr. Sparkman. In your statement you make the point that in 
some areas sharecroppers are not allowed to participate fully in the 
food-f or- victory program. I wonder just how general your observa- 
tions have been and whether or not you have any authentic proof that 
you might submit for the records. 


Mr. Mitchell. I have heard of that, particularly in the large 
plantation area in eastern Arkansas. There have been reports that 
certain landowners were not cooperating in any way in the increased 
food-production program. And recently over in eastern Arkansas a 
man told one of our people he signed up to raise 5 acres of peanuts 
and his landlord refused to allow him to do so, and told him if he 
wanted to take part in the food-f or-victory program to get off his land, 
that he was going to raise cotton and corn and do as he always did. I 
have that statement in the form of an affidavit, and I would like to- 
present it to the committee for its records. 

(Said statement is as follows.) 

State of Arkansas, 

County of St. Francis: 

Personally appeared before the undersigned notary public of and for the State- 
and county 'Gus Robinson and who, being duly sworn and under oath, makes the 
following statement. 

My name is Gus Robinson. I am making a sharecrop on the farm owned 
by Mr. Avery Bryant, of Forrest City, Ark. About the first of the year I was 
called on by a lady of the county Agricultural Adjustment Administration office- 
and urged to sign up to raise 5 acres of peanuts under the food-for-victory pro- 
gram being sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture. I 
agreed to raise the peanuts and told the officials I would do so if Mr. Avery would 
allow me anything out of the proceeds. A few days later Mr. Avery came to 
my home and told me that he would not permit me to raise anything but cotton 
and corn on his land and that I must notify the county officials that no peanuts 
would be raised. He said at the time that he didn't have a damn thing to do 
with the Government program and did not intend to have anything to do with 
it unless he was forced to do so. And that if I wanted to cooperate to go on and 
work for the Government and he would take day labor and raise his cotton and 
corn. We do not have a garden and. he refuses to allow us to raise sorghum or 
anything else for our own use. 

Gus Robinson. 

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 25 day of April 1942. 

[seal] J. F. Hynds, Notary Public. 

My commission expires May 19, 1945. 

Mr. Sparkman. We are glad to have it. That is quite a striking 
case, but during all of our farm program we have found noncoopera- 
tors. I wonder if you would be willing to say that such a condition 
.as that prevails generally to such an extent that it might be called 
typical? Or is it exceptional? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think it is more typical. However, I have no 
way of knowing the whole area. I know in certain areas it is typical. 


And I think the way it could be found out would be for the committee 
to check with the Department of Agriculture. They know who, in 
•each locality, is participating and who is not. 


Mr. Sparkman. I have on my own accord been talking around since 
I have been home to find out how the program is progressing, and I 
find through here they are having no particular difficulty in getting 
full participation. In fact, I believe they have made it part probably 
of the Alabama 5-year plan; I am not sure of that. I asked a couple 
of Negro tenants if they were planting peanuts, and one said he had to 
plant 100 pounds of seed; the other said he had to plant 2% acres. 
Another one with whom I talked said he wanted to cooperate with the 
program. So apparently it depends largely on the way it has been 
put on? 

Mr. Mitchell. I think it depends, too, on the sections. Perhaps 
in this area — I am not very familiar with it — but perhaps you have 
had more experience in raising food crops than they have had on the 
Mississippi Delta. 

Mr. Sparkman. I am sure there is a great difference as between 

Mr. Mitchell. The ordinary plantation there raises cotton. They 
don't raise food products even, as this man said, for their own use. 
He doesn't even have his garden. I know that has been true in the 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you had occasion to observe the Farm Secu- 
rity Administration program with reference to its rehabilitation work 
and farm tenure work? 


Mr. Mitchell. Yes, sir. We have always been highly in favor of 
the Farm Security Administration's program, both parts of it, the 
farm tenant purchase and rehabilitation. The rehabilitation program 
is larger and reaches many more people, and we regret that the tenant 
purchase angle of it couldn't be larger. We are concerned, too, with 
the fact this program is being curtailed 

Mr. Sparkman (interposing). Threatened to be. 

Mr. Mitchell (continuing). In Congress, because we think this is 
the time when it ought to be extended. Kecently, I might say, we 
made a survey of an organization, which is, I believe, chiefly responsible 
for the present action toward curtailing this agency. Our findings 
nave recently been made public and it is quite interesting to see an 
organization which represents 168,000 farmers, most of whom are low- 
income people, attack and seek to stop the work of this agency, which 
has benefited even the people who are the majority members. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you any suggestions as to how the low-income 
farmer can participate more actively in the Government's war pro- 

Mr. Mitchell. Well, if they had better supervision and that in- 
cludes the small land-owning farmer, as well as the tenant, and 
arranged to furnish the equipment necessary, for instance, loans to 


buy chickens, hogs, and cows — and there are thousands of families 
that have neither — that would greatly increase production now. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Mitchell. We have 
your statement, and it will appear in the record. 


Mr. Arnold. You gentlemen are both from Florence, Ala.? 

Mr. Hammill. I am from Sheffield. 

Mr. Arnold. Mr. Hammill, your company is engaged in obtaining 
aluminum from the primary ores? 

Mr. Hammill. The Reynolds plant is, and the Reynolds Alloys 
rolls aluminum sheets. We have the virgin element production units, 
as well as the rolling processes. 

Mr. Arnold. The Reynolds Metals Co. operates the Reynolds 
Alloys Co.? 

Mr. Hammill. No; that is a defense operation, gentlemen. It is an 
affiliate of Reynolds Metals. They have a different board of directors. 

Mr. Arnold. Were your plants financed by public or private 

Mr. Hammill. The Reynolds Metals has a mortgage guaranteed 
by the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, and the Reynolds Alloys 
as plant 465, defense plant appropriation 465. 

Mr. Arnold. From what source do you obtain power? 

Mr. Hammill. The Tennessee Valley Authority. 

Mr. Arnold. Is there plenty of power in that area? 

Mr. Hammill. So far as I know. That is out of my particular field. 


Mr. Arnold. What percentage of your working force is skilled and 
what percentage unskilled? 

Mr. Hammill. The working force at Reynolds Metals Co. is 
approximately 20 percent skilled, 40 percent semiskilled, and 40 
percent unskilled. With Reynolds Alloys it is approximately 20 
percent skilled, 70 percent semiskilled, and 10 percent unskilled. 
When I say semiskilled I mean the crews operating the rolling process 
in the mills, and some of these, the top men of that crew, are highly 

Mr. Arnold. Is it permissible for you to tell us how many em- 
ployees you have, or should that remain out of the record? 

Mr. Hammill. I have figures for the two plants. I haven't broken 
them down. It is 3,242 hourly workers, and 427 salaried people for 
the two plants. 

Mr. Arnold. From what source are you obtaining your labor? 

Mr. Hammill. Our skilled men for maintenance work come to us 
through our closed-shop agreement with the American Federation of 
Labor. For our production job we hired them at the gate or by 

Mr. Arnold. What percentage of your labor force is local? 

Mr. Hammill. You mean within the Muscle Shoals area? 

Mr. Arnold. Yes, sir ; or from the general area? 


Mr. Hammill. Of the total 3,242 of hourly people, 2,562 are from 
Alabama, 226 from Mississippi, adjoining counties to Alabama, and 
317 from Tennessee, which has adjoining counties right above Lauder- 
dale County. The balance of these others come from 29 other States 
with Kentucky having 19. By far the largest percentage — 80 to 
85 percent— of our people are local. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you experiencing difficulty in obtaining trained 
workers, or do your own training programs take care of that? 

Mr. Hammill. Our training program has to take care of our needs, 
because there is no other source to get trained aluminum workers. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you have difficulty in obtaining stenographic or 
clerical personnel? 

Mr. Hammill. Yes; for really qualified stenographers we have had 
difficulty. However, we have taken a number of girls who have re- 
cently graduated from business school and have developed them so 
that our situation isn't nearh 7 so acute as it was 2 or 3 months ago. 


Mr. Arnold. What is the situation there in regard to housing for 
your employees? 

Mr. Hammill. Very acute. We expect some relief from the present 
housing program under way in Sheffield and in Florence, which when 
completed will mean approximately 600 new units to be distributed 
in that area. We can use at least 450 houses right now. 

The Chairman. Where are they living now? 

Mr. Hammill. A good many are living quite a distance from the 
plant, in Mississippi and Tennessee and in neighboring counties 
around Colbert County. Their transportation problem is becoming 
very acute, and it is a question with some of those people as to whether 
or not they will be able to continue working for us. If we had homes 
near Sheffield we could take care of them, I think, with local transpor- 
tation facilities. We have found where there are crowded conditions 
— families living together — it is very unhealthy, unsanitary and un- 
satisfactory, particularly where there are small children. 

Mr. Sparkman. There has been quite a bit of housing built already? 

Mr. Hammill. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many units have been built, can you tell me 
offhand, just approximately? 

Mr. Hammill. When I went to Listerhill in 1941, an estimate had 
already been made by the Tennessee Valley Authority, and they ar- 
rived at the figure of 500, 250 to be built for private use and 250 by 
Federal Housing Authority through the Tennessee Valley Authority. 
That survey was made based on Tennessee Valley Authority needs of 
their new nitrate plant, expansion of the Electro-Metallurgical Co., and 
our original plant which called for 400 employees. Of those 250 
houses the Tennessee Valley Authority was to build, we were to get 
90 or 100 and the rest was to go to the Tennessee Valley Authority 
and the Electro-Metallurgical Co. But at a little later date, in Feb- 
ruary of 1941, this rolling mill came into being and was being built r 
and we increased our production of forged aluminum by building three 
more production rooms where there had been but one, an increase 
from 20,000,000 to 40,000,000 pounds a year, and an increase in pay 
rolls from probably originally 400 to over 3,000, and it will increase 


over that so we will have probably 3,800 people where we first thought 
of 400. 

Mr. Sparkman. Wasn't it 600 houses that were built, T. V. A. 250, 
and private industry 350? 

Mr. Hammill. I think it was. 

Mr. Sparkman. Was there another housing unit that came in? 

Mr. Hammill. Yes, sir; there is a building program being completed 
now that will put in that area an additional 450 to 600 houses. 

Mr. Sparkman. I believe there is one of 560 units and another of 
340. _ There are really two projects being built there. Now, is private 
housing proceeding fairly well? 

Mr. Hammill. In Florence it is proceeding very well. 

Mr. Sparkman. You will need 500 or 1,000 additional houses for 
the whole area, not just your housing? 

Mr. Hammill. I don't think so after these present houses are built. 
I think they will be adequate to take care of the present strain. 

transportation of workers 

Mr. Arnold. You believe, in view of the rubber shortage, housing 
is the solution, or would you be in favor of the bill Congressman 
Downey is advocating to requisition the cars of pleasure drivers to 
meet the situation? 

Mr. Hammill. That is a tough question. I feel this way about it. 
The armed forces, agriculture, and the defense industries are the three 
points we now have to concentrate on. Everything else has to go 
by the board. If it means that, it is all right with us. We will do it. 
Frankly, I think it would be more satisfactory if we could put the 
workers nearer to the plants. 

Mr. Sparkman. In connection with that, I believe you told me 
the other day you had been conducting some surveys as to the tire 
and transportation situation? 

Mr. Hammill. We have a committee in the Muscle Shoals area 
that consists of a representative from each of the three chambers of 
commerce and Mr. Flagg and myself and representatives of the other 
defense industries. Each plant has made a survey of its employees 
as to where they live, whether or not they live on bus routes, and if 
they use those busses, or if they use their own cars, and, if so, do they 
carry people with them or ride by themselves or ride with somebody 
else. The returns of that survey are inconclusive. The statistical 
data has not been correlated yet. We will post that on a master 
map as quickly as possible. However, I had an advanced release 
from the Office of War Transportation to the effect that the Governor 
in each State is now charged with responsibility of the program, 
and it is turned over in Alabama to the Automotive Advisory Com- 
mittee — or something like that — it is put into their hands and they 
act with each community of 10,000 or more people which is to have a 
representative or administrator appointed by the mayor. That seems 
to be the gist of the master plan. I have written to the Governor 
and asked him to either tell us what we are to do or to guide us. As 
yet, I haven't heard from him. We are working as hard as we can 
on the transportation problem. 

Mr. Sparkman. This is on a different subject. It was partially 
touched on a while ago with reference to the utilization of local labor. 


I was impressed with the statement you made to me when I was with 
you in your plant, and I have taken occasion to brag on it a good many 
times. I believe you told me when you came in you only brought 15 
workmen with you, 15 people to serve as a nucleus, and the rest of the 
people were recruited locally? 
Mr. Hammill. Yes, sir. 


Mr. Sparkman. Have you found them satisfactory workmen? 

Mr. Hammill. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Has there been any difficulty in training them, or 
were they readily adaptable? 

Mr. Hammill. Apparently they were readily adaptable. Of course, 
we haven't yet hit our maximum because we haven't the aluminum 
coming in. I don't know whether they will adapt themselves to that 
as well. We have some jobs that take very efficient men to fill. We 
have a boy about 19 who has been on the tender machine about 9 
months. That is a difficult operation and he has done all right so far. 
I don't know if he can hold it when we hit maximum. I don't know 
if he can maintain that pace. 

Mr. Sparkman. Could you say with the training and practice he 
has had he had measured up to your expectation? 

Mr. Hammill. Yes, sir. And so far as their ability to grasp the 
details and processes, we have been very satisfied with them. As a 
matter of fact, it is amazing what some of those boys have done. 

Mr. Sparkman. I have asked the question many times about the 
availability of surplus farm labor in the South. I remember a per- 
sonnel manager for Lockheed Air Corporation testified before us in 
Los Angeles and told us about their efforts to recruit labor. He said 
the finest labor that they could find came from the agricultural 
sections of the Middle West. I asked him why he didn't come down 
into the South. Well — always there seemed to be a feeling that 
southern labor was unskilled and apparently it couldn't become 
skilled. We find that opposition on many sides. I was delighted 
with the testimony of General Ditto and Colonel Hudson that they 
had no difficulty obtaining skilled labor here. I went down to the 
White House in the winter of 1938, and I had a conversation with the 
President in the effort to locate a chemical warfare arsenal in this area. 
Frankly, at that time I was studying the possible utilization of plant 
No. 1 at Muscle Shoals for it. The Chemical Warfare Service wanted 
one, and the objection that the President raised and the Secretary 
of War raised and the Chief of Staff raised was the lack of skilled labor 
in this area. I remember at a subsequent hearing a similar question 
was put before them, and I remember that the answer was for a long 
time they had considered the labor in the South unskilled. And I 
remember I said, "That is a fallacy. We have learned that the boy 
who has come up on the farm tinkering with tractors, mowing ma- 
chines, or cultivators is the finest potential skilled labor in all the 
country; that, while he may not have learned to operate a precision 
machine, he has learned to use his hands." 

I was over in the Gadsden shell forging and machining plant last 
fall right after it had opened. They had made their first run of shells, 
and the man showing us through showed us all these shells, and he 


said, "You know, the remarkable thing about this is that of the first 
run every single shell was good. There wasn't a faulty one in the 
bunch." And he said, "Congressman Sparkman, you will get a kick 
out of knowing when that run was made there wasn't a damn Yankee 
under the roof." And I asked him where he got his labor. And he 
said, "Out of the cotton fields of Alabama." I am glad to hear what 
you say about local labor. 

Mr. Arnold. Mr. Flagg, is your company entirely on war work? 

Mr. Flagg. Ninety-five percent. 

Mr. Arnold. Approximately how many persons are employed in 
your plant? 

Mr. Flagg. Approximately 950. 

Mr. Arnold. What percentage are women? 

Mr. Flagg. Ninety percent. 

Mr. Arnold. White or colored, or both? 

Mr. Flagg. All white. 

Mr. Arnold. From what sources do you draw your labor? 


Mr. Flagg. In a survey we made on the 10th of February, 725 
lived in Florence, 14 in Sheffield, 3 in Tuscumbia, 113 on farms, and 
60 in other localities, such as little subdivisions that are outlying from 
Florence, and we have some that come from as far as St. Joe, Tenn., 
and 7 or 8 from Rogers ville, Ala., and 1 that comes from as far as 
Pulaski, Tenn. 

Mr. Arnold. Those who live in the Tri-Cities, do they have to 
travel by automobile to your plant or use some other form of trans- 

Mr. Flagg. We had at that time 223 that owned their own cars; 
293 walked to work; 43 were taking the bus; the balance were riding 
with those that owned their own cars. I was about to forget — 56 
come in taxicabs. 

Mr. Arnold. Individually, or do they double up? 

Mr. Flagg. They double up. It looks like a can of sardines open- 
ing up when the taxi comes up. 

Mr. Arnold. How about the private cars? 

Mr. Flagg. Two hundred and ninety-two rode with somebody else. 

Mr. Arnold. Do they fill both seats, or come by themselves? 

Mr. Flagg. They fill them up. They have arrangements whereby 
they share gasoline expenses and so on. Maybe one person drives 
his car for a week, and picks up a bunch of people and they all pay a 
nickel a day to the person owning that car, and they swap around. 
We have been advocating this sort of driving. 

Mr. Arnold. I think both of you gentlemen are perhaps ahead of 
Washington in the thought you have given to this impending tire 


Mr. Flagg. I think the State of Alabama is ahead of the rest of 
the country on this problem. It has become known as the Alabama 
plan. The Associated Industries of Alabama has a very active 
committee headed by Mr. Rushton in Birmingham. We have al- 
ready held one meeting in Florence. Mr. Hammill attended that 


meeting. I happen to be on the committee. Mr. Rushton, by the 
way, appeared before some committee in Washington, explaining the 
Alabama plan. 

Mr. Arnold. Of course this committee realizes — I am sure you do, 
too — that the transportation problem is not only going to develop 
with respect to industry, but with respect to farm labor as well. 


Mr. Flagg. I might touch on one angle of this transportation prob- 
lem that so far I have seen very little mention made of, and that is 
the conversion of school busses. Our situation is that we have a 
shortage of busses. Yet we have, I think, in the county of Lauder- 
dale — and I don't know about Colbert County — I think we have 36 
school busses that just carry the school children to and from school 
and are idle the rest of that day. They are not utilized in any other 
manner at all, and I believe the school busses could be very readily 
used in the transportation of industrial workers. 

Mr. Arnold. Would the hours have to be shifted around in order 
for them to be utilized? 

Mr. Flagg. No; the workers go to work much earlier than the 
children go to school. One problem is the driver of those busses. 

The Chairman. What do they do during vacation with those busses; 
lay them up? 

Mr. Flagg. The objection was that over the vacations they over- 
hauled them, but I don't think it would take more than a week to do 
that thoroughly. 

The Chairman. Are these school busses allowed to buy rationed 

Mr. Flagg. That I couldn't answer. 

Mr. Arnold. I had a complaint from my district last year; 6 months 
ago, they couldn't use these busses to transport their football and 
baseball teams to another city where they were going to have a game. 

Mr. Flagg. That is the way we do — transport our football teams to 
the various fields. 

Mr. Arnold. I lodged that complaint with the proper governmental 

Mr. Sparkman. If in order to win this war it is necessary to convey 
people to the various war industries by the use of school busses, if 
there are any regulations against it, they could certainly be changed 
to meet the occasion. 

Mr. Flagg. I would think so. 

Mr. Arnold. You were just suggesting the question that was 
raised was with reference to the maintenance of those busses. If you 
put them in anything like continuous operation, as you should have 
to do if you used them to transport workers, you could very easily 
work out some plan whereby they could be checked and inspected and 
worked on overnight? 

Mr. Flagg. Yes, sir; and at the present time no matter how an 
employee reaches his work and gets back home, there is a transpor- 
tation shortage. If he is driving his own automobile, he's using his 
own gas, and there is the rubber consumption, too. Therefore, a 
charge could be made each worker for his trip on the bus, whether it 
■was a school bus or a public utility. 



Mr. Sparkman. Your argument is: Get the maximum utilization of 
whatever transportation facilities can be used. 

Mr. Flagg. That is absolutely correct. In other words, when 
we have school busses available, it seems to me it is very foolish to 
take them and put them up in school yards and let them stay there 
all day, when they could be serving a war industry winch needs them. 

Mr. Arnold. Those school busses are owned by individual 

Mr. Flagg. No, by the county. In our particular instance by the 
county school boards. 

Mr. Arnold. In Illinois they are owned by individuals. 

Mr. Flagg. They are owned by the county school boards here. 
They haven't really felt the tire need, and whether they have thought 
about it at all I don't know. When we approached this subject one 
of the school board members was present at the meeting, and imme- 
diately he put forth this argument. First, was the driver situation. 
The driver probably drives to school and then has another job some- 
where else. But you could work that out. You would have to meet 
the situation that existed in that locality. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course the school people don't want to run 
the risk of burning up their rubber? 

Mr. Flagg. That's right. 

Mr. Arnold. You think there is no reason in the world why that 
should not be worked out? 

Mr. Flagg. No, sir; and I think it opens a very large field of trans- 
portation. I know it does in our particular county. 


Mr. Sparkman. You run full time? 

Mr. Flagg. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Tweniy-four hours a day? 

Mr. Flagg. In some departments. 

Mr. Sparkman. In fact you have been running that way a couple 
of years? 

Mr. Flagg. A year and a half. 

Mr. Sparkman. Your product is underclothes? 

Mr. Flagg. Knit underwear for the Army and for the Navy, for 
the Marines, Coast Guard, and Air Corps, and we are now doing a 
great deal of work for the Chemical Warfare. 

Mr. Arnold. Is your plant being enlarged? 

Mr. Flagg. Yes, sir; we are negotiating at the present time to take 
60,000 square feet of floor space that an old cotton mill owns. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you going to be able to get the machines? 

Mr. Flagg. What we need is floor space. 

Mr. Arnold. Will that increase your production? 

Mr. Flagg. Yes, sir; but not our employment. In other words, 
we are now so crowded that we have reached the point where the 
law of diminishing returns is working. 

Mr. Arnold. You haven't had any problem with conversion; you 
were already making that particular product? 


Mr. Flagg. We had a big job of conversion, but it was prior to 
priorities. In other words, we started to convert our plant a year 
and a half ago and completed the conversion within 6 or 7 months. 

Mr. Arnold. You didn't have a major conversion because you 
were making that same line of goods before; you were really stepping 
up your efficiency? 

Mr. Flagg. Yes, sir; and installing the type of machines necessary 
to meet the Government's specifications. 

Mr. Arnold. Have you come in contact with any of these small 
plants that are about to be shut out by reason of priorities, yet unable 
to get machines with which to convert their plants? 

Mr. Flagg. I have had no actual personal experience. What I 
know is mostly hearsay, brought to me by machinery men and also 
in conversations with men who have that type of plant. For instance, 
the little hosiery mill in Decatur has actually gone out of that busi- 
ness. But the situation there was the silk problem. When the silk 
was frozen, the mill was left. They wanted to handle nylon, but it 
is now impossible to get the necessary equipment, because of priorities. 
Now, I understand, they have converted the plant and are going to 
make some kind of fuses and things of that sort. All I know is by 
hearsay. And I don't feel competent to discuss it. 

The Chairman. We thank you gentlemen very much for being here. 


The Chairman. At this point, I wish to introduce two letters from 
the witness, setting forth some data that we should have in the record. 
(The letters mentioned are as follows:) 

House Committee Investigating National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 

Gentlemen: Pursuant to the arrangement agreed upon at the February 
conference and to a letter from your field investigator, the following is Gulf 
Shipbuilding Corporation's statement in connection with the suggested points: 

Our employment figures are: 

End of 1939 

End of 1940 203 

End of 1941 5,039 

End of March 1942 5,383 

Our force will go up to around 12,000 under our present contracts. Recruit- 
ment is at the gate and through the medium of the United States Employment 

Since January 1, 1942, there have been. 203 terminations of skilled and semi- 
skilled workers due to the Selective Service Act. The policy of this company 
is to request deferments only for those employees whose records reveal good 
attendance, proper application of effort, and sufficient experience to make them 
valuable workers. There is a tendency for the draft boards of Florida and 
Mississippi to be severe in the cases involving skilled men. 

This company is engaged in an intensive in-plant training effort consisting of 
echools for electricians, pipe fitters, sheet metal workers, silver brasers, welders 
and burners. 

These schools are maintained to supplement the program of the vocational 
education department of Mobile, which cannot take care of our requirements in 
sufficient volume and in sufficient time. Our employees are encouraged to attend 
defense training classes to improve and broaden their knowledge of their vocations. 
Finally, this company makes maximum use of the special apprentice system of 
in-plant training of semiskilled workers. Upgradings of these various groups 
depend on records in plant, by the service, and training-school reports. 
60396 — 42— pt. 32 12 


Our labor turn-over has increased to 3.7 percent and, from our investigations, 
the increase is the result of inadequate housing as we have employees living in 
tents and in automobiles. This is, at present, the most critical phase of the labor 

Our current experience shows that, with about 9,000 men on our hourly pay roll, 
we cannot hope to increase this force until something radical is done in the way 
of providing facilities adequately to house the present force and to care for the 
increase. The importance of immediate construction of houses cannot be too 
strongly emphasized. 

Very truly yours, 

Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation, 
H. Hill, 

Vice President and General Manager. 

Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation, 

Mobile, Ala., May 18, 1943. 
The Honorable John H. Tolan, 

Chairman, House Committee Investigating National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 
Dear Sir: Pursuant to the hearings held in Huntsville, Ala., on May 8, 1942, 
we are taking the liberty of submitting a copy of a resolution adopted May 13, 
1942, in a meeting of the (Alabama) State council of administrators. 

In the face of the existing deplorable shortage of housing facilities as set forth 
in the enclosure, it is impossible for us to increase our working force to meet our 
needs; therefore, we earnestly urge that your committee use its influence to get 
adequate housing built in this area as quickly as possible. 
Very truly yours, 

Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation, 
H. Hill, 

Vice-President and General Manager. 

Resolution Adopted bt the Alabama State Council of Administrators, 
May 13, 1942 

Mr. Plowden reported that, in his opinion, the recruitment of trainees in up- 
State centers for the shipyard industry was being greatly hampered by the return 
to these up-State centers of former trainees who had been unable to secure housing 
accommodations in Mobile, even though they had passed their tests creditably 
and had received employment in the shipyards. After considering this problem 
from all angles, the following resolution was proposed by Mr. C. F. Anderson, of 
the United States Employment Service, and was unanimously adopted by the 

"Definite information from all sources clearly indicates that there are no hous- 
ing, or even rooming accommodations in the entire Mobile area. In fact, in the 
area are many cases existing to the extent that 7 workers are occupying the 
same room, using beds in relays. A recent report indicates that 51 skilled mechan- 
ics, all members of the Congress of Industrial Organizations union, and all of whom 
are badly needed in the shipbuilding industry, came to Mobile, some slept in cars 
with their families for several nights while attempting to find some place in which 
to live, and then left. 

"Training is at present being conducted in a number of other points in Alabama, 
specifically directed toward Mobile. As these badly needed trainees finish their 
courses and are routed to Mobile, their usual experience is the same as indicated 
by the above-mentioned workers. Such trainees frequently return to the points 
where training was given them and discourage other members of the classes from 
continuing their training, or certainly, from going to Mobile upon completion of 
the courses. 

"It is the unanimous opinion of this council that the labor situation in Mobile 
will never be solved until adequate housing or rooming accommodations are 
provided for the necessary number of workers. 

"It is also the opinion of the State council that the situation in Mobile cannot 
be materially bettered by the training of Negroes for the skilled occupations where 
the dearth is so great, since, while training is in the process of being conducted for 
Negroes, there are at present no qualified skilled Negroes in Mobile. Careful 
surveys conducted recently have indicated that there are, in fact, few Negroes 
. available for referral for training in the skilled classifications. As of December 
1941, an analysis made by the then Alabama State Employment Service indicated 


that the active total number of Negroes available for training referrals was only 
265. There is no reason to believe that the situation has changed since that sur- 
vey was made. At the present time, the National Youth Administration reports 
that they have only 4 male Negro youth awaiting assignment in Mobile. 
Plans have been made there and are now in process for the training for such 
Negroes as may be available for skilled jobs in the ship yards, both in Mobile 
and throughout the State. 

"It is, therefore, unanimously the opinion of this council that the housing 
shortage in the Mobile area is not accentuated by the lack of utilization of Negroes 
in the shipbuilding industry; and, furthermore, that the housing situation would 
apply to the Negro as well as to the white from the standpoint of labor being 
brought in from other areas." 


The Chairman. Without revealing any military information, 
Mr. Hill, tell us what your company is building and for whom? 

Mr. Hill. Ships for the Navy Department and Maritime Com- 

The Chairman. What is your total working force? 

Mr. Hill. Right now about 9,500 persons, plus 500; about 10,000. 

The Chairman. Approximately what percentage is skilled and semi- 
skilled and unskilled? 

Mr. Hill. Roughly 20 percent skilled, 40 percent trainees, prob- 
ably about 20 percent semiskilled, and the remaining 20 percent 
unskilled. That is just approximately, of course. 

utilization of local labor 

The Chairman. What is your company's policy with regard to 
utilization of local labor; do you try to get local labor whenever you 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; as far as possible. 

The Chairman. Do you get much of your labor from localities 
other than Mobile? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; I would say the farming section to the north 
of Mobile furnishes quite a good deal. 

The Chairman. Do you have any training departments? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; we have established a training department that 
runs right now close to 4,000 men in process of training and production. 

The Chairman. Do they get paid while in training? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; they are also on production work, and of course 
in addition to their actual work we have training schools, which are 
for electricians, pipe fitters, sheet metal workers, silver brazers, weld- 
ers, and burners. And of course those courses which are principally 
on matters of technical training — blue print reading, and things of 
that sort. 

The Chairman. Do you have any transportation problem there? 
" Mr. Hill. We definitely do. What we are doing in that connec- 
tion is this: We have quite a force coming out of Mobile and we 
have bought 15 interurban cars that will be in operation I guess by 
the 1st of June and will be operated by the local railway to the plant. 
They ought to take care of 2,500 men. 

The Chairman. What is the population of Mobile? 

Mr. Hill. Originally I would say the population was about 70,000, 
•and the estimates vary all the way up to 130,000 right now. 

The Chairman. It undoubtedly created a housing problem? 



Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; very definitely. That is one of our greatest 
problems right now. It is to get houses built in sufficient time to be 
of use, because, as we see it, we are probably going up to about 12,500' 
men. Right now our hirings are just about the same as the people 
who quit. And from our inquiries, most of the people who are quitting 
are quitting on account of the housing conditions. Some are in tents 
and trailers, and some sleep in the backs of automobiles. 

The Chairman. Sometimes people want to know why we investi- 
gate housing and ask what connection that has with migration of 
people. Well- — if people come in and can't get a place to live, they 

Mr. Hill. That is exactly what we are up against. 

The Chairman. Is anything being done about it? 

Mr. Hill. Yes; they have formed a Mobile War Emergency Com- 
mittee to see if they can get some pretty quick action on housing. 
We have an allocation of 200 houses, and there is another proposal to 
build 600 more, and I understand bids are to be opened on the 18th of 
May with the understanding that construction must start by the 25th 
of May and, of course, from that point, it will be this: After we get 
600 built and occupied or near occupied, how many more shall we 


The Chairman. Good housing has a direct connection with a 
man's working capacity? 

Mr. Hill. Undoubtedly. I think it has everything to do with a 
man's efficiency. If a man is living in a trailer or tent, he doesn't 
get the kind of conditions he is accustomed to, and that reflects in his 
work. I can't see why, in the shipbuilding industry, we can't get 
more housing, because if there is anything permanent on this program, 
it is shipbuilding. You can readily see how it is different from some 
of these defense projects; in the course of construction, the construc- 
tion labor comes in, does the construction, and then goes out. But our 
housing problem is more permanent than that. It looks like we are 
definitely engaged in shipbuilding for a number of years. 

The Chairman. In view of the fact that so much tonnage is being 
destroyed so quickly? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Have you any ideas you could give us about the 
percentage of labor turn-over in ihe past 12 months? 

labor turn-over 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir. When it started it was negligible. But now, 
the last I saw on it was 3.7 percent per week, which amounts to 350 
men per week. Now, that has a direct bearing on the productive 
efficiency of the plant as a whole for this reason: That most of those 
people who come in have never seen a shipyard. They spend the first 
few weeks finding out what it is all about. And if they leave inside 
of 2 or 3 months, they may as well never have come in. That is the 
condition we are confronted with. 

The Chairman. What is the cause of that turn-over? 



Mr. Hill. When shipyards start, while of course they are supposed 
to do all their training, it is almost impossible for these shipyards to 
build ships with green men all the way. They must have a nucleus 
from other shipyards. That is one of the causes. Of course, we 
•don't complain about that, as long as it is kept within reasonable 
bounds, because that has to be. The Government knows better than 
we do where they require shipyards, and when it does build a new ship- 
yard, they have got to get some men in there to train men about ship- 
building. That is one of the causes. Another cause is housing. 
And, of course, the first condition I mentioned, we have got to live 
with. But the second condition can be cured. And the second 
•cause is more ot a major cause than the first. 

Mr. Arnold. Who makes request for these men? Does the Gov- 
ernment ask you? 

Mr. Hill. No; they naturally go. 

Mr. Arnold. They hear of an opening? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. How do they know that one of their skills is needed? 
How is it provided or arranged that the new yard gets just the kind 
of skills needed? It is a hit-and-miss proposition the way it is now, 
isn't it? 

Mr. Hill. I wouldn't say so, because under present conditions 
anybody who knows anything about ships is required in a shipyard. 

Mr. Arnold. Then if the skilled labor coming voluntarily to that 
new shipyard doesn't take care of their needs, the owners go out and 
get the other men? 

Mr. Hill. Not exactly. The way we operate and have to operate 
is that we get our nucleus of people who know something about ships. 
From that point on it is a question of intensive training within our 
own plant. They train men who know nothing about that particular 
skill. That is to say, if you have a lofter, he may be doing loft work 
or supervising about a dozen people who have never seen a shipyard, 
much less a loft, before. 

Mr. Arnold. Do higher wages attract these men to the new 

Mr. Hill. In some cases; yes. 

Mr. Arnold. There is no standard scale of wages? 

Mr. Hill. Very definitely. There is a ceiling. But the intermediate 
a-ates — sometimes a man may be getting so much at one shipyard 
and can get more at another. 

The Chairman. Do you have any piracy? 

Mr. Hill. I would say in the last 12 months the piracy has di- 
minished very considerably, because the shipyards themselves find it 
•doesn't pay. 

Mr. Arnold. Has your labor turn-over decreased or increased in the 
past 12 months? 

Mr. Hill. It has steadily increased. 

Mr. Arnold. That will have a direct effect on production? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Have you any suggestion to remedy that? 



Mr. Hill. The only practical suggestion is in more housing, because- 
our labor turn-over is definitely connected with the housing condition. 
In other words, if a man came there and had a comfortable home to 
live in, that would have a tendency to keep him there. The first 
question asked by the men being hired at our shipyard is: "Can I get 
a house?" And we have had lots of cases of men wanting to work 
for us, but not doing so because they couldn't get a house. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you lose many men to the draft? 

Mr. Hill. Quite a few. 

Mr. Arnold. You don't have any deferments? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; we have deferment, and yet, between January 1 
and April 28, we have had 203 men lost to us by the draft. In that 
connection I might say this — you, of course, are probably much more 
familiar with the selective-service regulations than I am — but, except 
in cases of people whose skill is such that they couldn't be replaced 
within a reasonable time, we don't ask for deferment. That is only 
in the cases of skilled mechanics, draftsmen, and engineers. 

Mr. Arnold. You get permanent deferment sometimes? 

Mr. Hill. No; 6 months. 

The Chairman. Is there anything else, Mr. Hill, you care to say — 
something you haven't covered? 

Mr. Hill. I think you gentlemen have covered the ground pretty 
well, so far as I can see. 

The Chairman. Are you giving any thought to the rubber shortage 
and the effect it will have on workers? 

Mr. Hill. Yes, sir; we are making a study about that. I was talk- 
ing to some Maritime Commission people and they are very much 
excited about the rubber situation. And our proposition is that if 
you get this housing, the rubber situation, so far as those people in 
nouses is concerned, will be practically nonexistent, because these 
houses will all be within a mile or a mile and a half of the yard. And, 
as far as that is concerned, it will relieve the situation of 2,500 men at 

The Chairman. We thank you very much, Mr. Hill. We appre- 
ciate your coming. We are glad we . could put you on this morning 
so you can go back to build more ships. 


Mr. Sparkman. You used to live at Gurley, didn't you, Percy? 
Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Were you born in this county? 
Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I was born at Gurley, and that is in this- 

Mr. Sparkman. Were you raised there? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; I was raised down here on Route 4. 

Mr. Sparkman. Down in Pond Beat? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you live on the arsenal grounds? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What do you call it — the "arsenal"? 


Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I hear some of these fellows calling it the "arsenic 
plant," and others the "bullet plant." 

Mr. Bellman. Some of them does; yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are you working down there? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. How long have you been working down there? 

Mr. Bellman: Ever since the last week in October. 

Mr. Sparkman. You were one of the first? 

Mr. Bellman. Very near it. 

Mr. Sparkman. You were living down there before it came in, 
you were farming down there? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I have been down there ever since I was 10. 

Mr. Sparkman. With whom did you live? 

Mr. Bellman. Well — there was Dr. Bellman, and the last man 
was Mr. Sam Harris. 

Mr. Sparkman. How old are you, Percy? 

Mr. Bellman. Forty-six. 

Mr. Sparkman. How long did you live with Mr. Harris? 

Mr. Bellman. About 15 years, I reckon. 

Mr. Sparkman. Were you a cash tenant or a sharecropper? 

Mr. Bellman. I was a sharecropper. 

Mr. Sparkman. All of Mr. Harris' lands were taken over by the 
arsenal and ordnance plant? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. In fact, he lived right down in the ordnance-plant 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; but I wasn't on his place when it was 

Mr. Sparkman. What place were you on? 

Mr. Bellman. Yancy Horton's, in Mullins Flat, that is whore I 
was living, next to that mountain. 

Mr. Sparkman. You don't recognize those places very well now? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I went through yesterday, and I was lost all the 
time with all those railroad tracks and new roads. 

Mr.BELLMAN. Yes, sir; they have got it tore up awful now. 

Mr. Sparkman. You can travel through there in the wintertime 
now, and you couldn't before. 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; you can go just any way you want to go 

Mr. Sparkman. How much land did you farm, Percy? 

Mr. Bellman. About 35 acres. " 

Mr. Sparkman. Mostly cotton? 

Mr. Bellman. I have always handled about 25 in cotton. 

Mr. Sparkman. You didn't have your own livestock? 

Mr.BELLMAN. Yes, sir; I did. 

Mr. Sparkman. You worked on a "third and a fourth"? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I thought you worked on half and half? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; I was on a third and a fourth all the time 
I was with Mr. Harris. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you still got your livestock? 

Mr. Bellman. Two head. 


Mr. Sparkman. Two mules? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about your plow tools? 

Mr. Bellman. I got all except my cultivator. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about your cows? 

Mr. Bellman. I got four head of cows. 

Mr. Sparkman. You don't use all that milk? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What do you do with the rest of it? 

Mr. Bellman. When it comes in right — they are all about dry 
now — but we generally sell some of it. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you raise any hogs? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; I haven't got none now. I sold my hogs. 
I didn't have no good place for them. 

Mr. Sparkman. Have you got chickens? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I got them. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you have your own garden? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are you doing any farming at all? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; not anything but just little truck patches. 

Mr. Sparkman. Wliere are you living? 

Mr. Bellman. In one of the new houses. 

Mr. Sparkman. In one of the Farm Security Administration's 
new houses? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; below Merrimack. 

Mr. Sparkman. How much ground do you have; just room enough 
for a garden? 

Mr. Bellman. I have got about 2 acres there, I guess. 

Mr. Sparkman. You raise potatoes in your garden and things like 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. What kind of a crop did you make last year? 

Mr. Bellman. I made a nice crop last year, 14 bales of cotton. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you have to quit working at the arsenal to 
gather it, or did your wife and children gather it? 

Mr. Bellman. My wife and child did. I have one child. 

Mr. Sparkman. A girl or a boy? 

Mr. Bellman. A girl. 

Mr. Sparkman. They are pretty good workers? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I reckon they are. My wife is given thai 
name, and you might as well say she done the work. 

Mr. Sparkman. What do you make at the arsenal? 

Mr. Bellman. I makes $4.75 a day now. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many days a week do you work? 

Mr. Bellman. I works all 5 of them. 

Mr. Sparkman. That gives you almost $25 a week. Do you get 
any overtime? 

Mr. Bellman. On Saturdays we gets overtime. 

Mr. Sparkman. You make pretty close to $30 a week? 

Mr. Bellman. I sure does. 

Mr. Sparkman. Percy, what are you doing with that money? It 
doesn't take all that to live on? 

Mr. Bellman. I owed some debts that I am paying up. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are you buying any defense bonds? 


Mr. Bellman. I have put my name in for them, but they haven't 
taken out none. 

Mr. Sparkman. You have asked them to deduct some from your 
pay, and that is just getting started, Percy. The "deducts" will hit 
you later. 

Mr. Bellman. I thought they was just letting me by. 

Mr. Sparkman. No, no, Percy. You will get your "deducts" 
later. How much rent are you paying for that house? 

Mr. Bellman. $10 a month. 

Mr. Sparkman. How big a house is it? 

Mr. Bellman. It is plenty large enough. It is four rooms and a- 

Mr. Sparkman. The house has running water? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You have a well? 

Mr. Bellman. There is two pumps on the row of houses. 

Mr. Sparkman. How many houses are there? 

Mr. Bellman. Twenty. 

Mr. Sparkman. And they have two wells with pumps? 

Mr. Bellman: Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. And all of you use water from the two wells? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Do you have an indoors toilet? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You lived there during the wintertime? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Hr. Sparkman. You found the house good and warm? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; pretty warm. 

Mr. Sparkman. You are engaged in construction work, or are you 
doing production work? You helped build the plant? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I work on the railroad. 

Mr. Sparkman. I saw a lot of men riding handcars on the railroad; 
were you in that bunch? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I used to work on the railroad, and you had to 
pump the handcars then, and that was work. Things have improved. 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; we don't have to pump ours. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you help build those railroads? Is that what 
you are doing? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. You helped lay the ties? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. They are still building them? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Are you going to stay with the arsenal or go back 
to farming? 

Mr. Bellman. I would go back this evening to the farm if I could 
find one. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you try to get a farm? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; I sure did. And they told me there was so 
many people buying land and selling land they wouldn't talk to a 
man about renting none. You just can't rent a farm. 


Mr. Sparkman. I have a little farm with two tenants on it. And 
if they ever move, I am going to be looking out for you, a man that 
can grow 14 bales of cotton. 

Mr. Bellman. I wish I could have struck you sooner. 

Mr. Arnold. You said you were paying off some debts, Percy, with 
your surplus money. If you got in debt farming, why do you want to 
go back to it? 

Mr. Bellman. Just because I likes it so well. I have been in it all 
my life. 

Mr. Arnold. Your debts don't worry you very much? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; my debts don't worry me. Maybe I will 
pay them off some day. I will if I can. 

Mr. Sparkman. They are things you drag over from year to year? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes sir. I owed about $1,004 inside of 4 years. 
When I moved over from Mr. Harris' I had to buy a lot of mules and 
tools, and I paid all that out, about. 

Mr. Sparkman. You had your mules and tools to back up that 
indebtedness, and what you are doing is paying off those debts? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir; when I moved from Mr. Harris' I had two 
mules, and I bought four more. 

Mr. Sparkman. You sold four and you have two of them left? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir; I sold two of them, and two of them died. 

Mr. Sparkman. Percy, were there many fellows in the shape you 
are in, fellows who wanted to continue farming but couldn't find a 
place to go to? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. Of course, the Farm Security Administration made 
an effort to locate all of you. In fact, that is how you happen to be 
in one of their houses? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. They furnish those houses for you to live in 
temporarily until you can get located on another farm? 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir, I was to get on one of those farms and farm 
this year. But somehow they didn't get it fixed up. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Bellman. You look 
pretty contented. 

Mr. Bellman. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. You don't feel right without being on a farm? 

Mr. Bellman. No, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. I am that way, too. I am a farmer myself. 


FRIDAY, MAY 8, 1942 

afternoon session 

House of Representatives, 
Select Committee Investigating 

National Defense Migration, 

Washington, D. C. 

The Chairman. The committee will please come to order. 

Mr. Arnold. Before we start examining any witnesses — since we 
are working with the Mobile situation, I want to say that the testimony 
of Mr. Hill this morning as to losing workers in Mobile because of the 
housing situation is borne out by letters I have received from a former 
Illinois citizen, whose name he doesn't want me to disclose, in which 
he calls attention to the situation in the Mobile area in very bitter 
words. A second letter received from him contains this paragraph: 
"Our own Al Capone in his heyday was an angel compared with this 
gang down here, as Al didn't take the money away from the working- 
man, but in a number of instances established a soup kitchen to feed 
the hungry. Whereas, this mob is out after the defense workers." 
Of course, I realize this man is perhaps a little exercised in mind about 
the situation, but it might be he isn't either, he's just so fed up with 
the situation that he is getting off his chest what he really feels, and 
I insert that because it throws light on the situation, and confirms 
what Mr. Hill says is the feeling of these workers. 

The Chairman. That is admitted. Do you want to tear the 
signature from that letter? 

Mr. Arnold. This one isn't signed. 

(The letter is as follows:) 

"Somewhere," Ala., February 16, 1942. 
Mr. Laurence Arnold, 
Illinois Representative, 

House of Representatives Office Building, Washington, D. C. 

My Dear Laurence: I note according to press reports that you are on the 
"housing committee considering the housing situation in Mobile for defense 

In that I have been in this locality for the past 2 years and am somewhat 
■acquainted with the situation, I suggest that you first make a thorough investi- 
gation as to the conditions of the defense workers who come here to assist the war 
effort of the United States. 

To start out, you might go to the Federal Bureau of Investigation office and see 
how and why nearly the entire police force of Mobile were dismissed and replaced 
at the instigation of the Federal authorities. Why the inspector of police after 
the house cleaning was replaced by being forced out of office and the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation was powerless to stop this. Since the coming of the 
defense workers why has the piice of oysters, which are taken from the surrounding 
waters, increased from 25 to 80 cents a quart? Why are the greedy and grasping 
fee-collecting nazi-japs from the license inspector's office allowed to force defense 



workers coming from other States to collect their $3.90 fees without lawfully 
taking the legal course. These are only a few of the many complaints against 
the local authorities and citizens who apparently are taking every advantage of 
the situation created by the necessity of bringing in workers to man the many 
defense industries. 

I suggest that Federal Government will not spend another cent in this locality 
until conditions are made decent for the citizens who are patriotically trying to do- 
their duty in the defense industries, or unless the southern half of Mobile County 
is placed under Federal martial law and local officers replaced by a military 

I do believe that after this emergency is over Mobile city will become one of 
the largest "ghost cities" of the country. Therefore, before the Government 
spends any further money here, it should see to it that its investment is protected 
for the future. 

You can send your investigators here and they can talk with the many defense 
workers, check over the court records, etc., and you find conditions worse than I 
can tell you in a letter. 

Very sincerely yours, 

A Defense Worker. 

P. S. — I am giving you my name and address on an attached slip, because if 
this were known to local civil authorities, undoubtedly I would be persecuted. 

Mr. Abbott. I would like to read into the record at this time this 
supplement to the testimony offered by Mr. Hill, vice president of 
Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation, Mobile, Ala.: ! 


As all our construction is predicated on our ability to secure necessary man- 
power to complete contracts at least by contract-schedule dates, or as soon as 
possible, the labor turn-over at present (which is largely due to lack of adequate 
housing facilities) is such that there is grave doubt of our ability to fulfill our 
shipbuilding obligations, the employment situation being such that the number 
of employees quitting almost equals" the number of new. employees being hired. 


Mr. Arnold. Commander, we appreciate very much your coming 
this long distance to give the committee testimony that we are seeking 
with reference to the situation in the southern part of Alabama, 
the Mobile area. As port director, I understand you are responsible 
for ships which dock at the Mobile port at any time, day or night, 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you responsible for the housing of crews while 
the ships are serviced? 

Commander Langworthy. I am responsible for the finding of 
housing facilities for the crews of ships that are undergoing or about 
to undergo alterations or repairs in port. 

Mr. Arnold. Many times when these ships are undergoing repairs 
the men can't live on board? 

Commander Langworthy. A United States Navy ship arrived 3 
months ago and had a crew of about 200 men, and the ship was to 
undergo a major alteration. They immediately called me to find 
places to live for the portion of the crew that would have to live 
ashore. When you undertake a major alteration or repair, it is 


usually necessary to cut off all steam, water, and lights, and the men 
have to live ashore. That is quite possible at Navy yards and 
naval stations where they have sufficient facilities, but in Mobile 
we have no naval station of any kind, and the men must be quartered 
in Mobile. 

Mr. Arnold. Are you always able to quarter them? 


Commander Lang worthy. No, sir; it was so bad in the case of 
the ship I just mentioned, and I had so few places to house them that 
the editor of the neswpaper inserted an advertisement in his paper in 
my behalf and I received 100 replies. And I have correspondence 
where 1 told the commanding officer of a ship to make a survey of 
these quarters offered. He told me in a conversation that not more 
than 20 percent of them were livable. He said some of them he 
"wouldn't even put a dog in." 

His official statement stated that his officers had made a preliminary 
survey. He stated, "However, several of the officers who have made 
preliminary inquiries have found the more suitable rentals already 
taken up. It is suggested that another advertisement be inserted, as 
the crew subsistence on board will terminate within the next few days, 
and it is desired that the crew be able to avail themselves of the avail- 
able rentals before they are taken up." The outcome was the Navy 
sent a large number of the crew to New Orleans. 

Mr. Arnold. How far is that? 

Commander Langworthy. 150 miles. But the unsatisfactory 
feature of that is we lose the employment of those men on a ship when 
they have to be sent to other cities. That is just one example. 

Mr. Arnold. Have you had to send the crew to New Orleans in 
other instances? 

Commander Langworthy. This is the only large ship. But we 
now have ships coming in quite frequently, and there will be more of 
them coming in for major alterations. 

The Chairman. What is a major alteration? 

Commander Langworthy. They take a merchant ship constructed 
for carrying cargo and convert it to a ship for submarine defense action, 
or to take its position in the fleet as an auxiliary. We have just made 
one such conversion of an ex-German ship. And there is another one 
in Mobile being converted to serve as a Navy auxiliary. 

The Chairman. What was it you said? That there was no naval 
station at Mobile? 

Commander Langworthy. There is none at all. We have no 
naval housing facilities at Mobile. 

The Chairman. Do they build ships there, fighting ships? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; they are at present building 
a considerable number at Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation; destroyers 
and mine sweepers. 

The Chairman. Does the shipbuilding going on in Mobile warrant 
a naval station? 



Commander Langworthy. No; but what it will and does warrant 
is dormitories sufficient to house the crews of these ships that are 
being sent to Mobile to man them. That is now being undertaken 
by the Government. We have already projected a barracks at Chicka- 
saw to house the officers and crews of the ships that are now being 
built in that yard. We have also projected and are about to com- 
mence the construction of barracks at Alabama Drydocks. They 
have not been started yet, but when these barracks are complete, the 
Navy's needs for enlisted men and for a certain number of bachelor 
officers will be taken care of. 

The Chairman. How large a ship can you berth at Mobile? 

Commander Langworthy. It doesn't depend on the size so much 
as on the draft. We are limited to a channel depth which is 30 feet, 
but we have very large dock space at Mobile. At Alabama Drydocks 
they can berth approximately 22 to 24 medium size or large transports 
at one time. 

Mr. Arnold. You are responsible for the repair of these ships, are 
you not? 

Commander Langworthy. No, sir; that comes under another 
department — the assistant materials officer attached to the Eighth 
Naval District. His responsibility is material. I have the personnel 
and military end of the Navy's activities in Mobile. 


Mr. Arnold. Labor turn-over to any large extent would tend to 
delay the effective operation of repairs, would it not? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Arnold. So there is a direct connection between proper ac- 
commodation of workers and sailors to actual production, so far as 
the worker is concerned? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir. We have in Mobile, practi- 
cally all the time, 8 to 10 ships that are being armed. We take the 
merchant ships of our Government and of friendly foreign govern- 
ments and mount guns on them. 

Mr. Arnold. They go out as merchant ships? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; with Navy gun crews. I 
often have gun crews arrive in Mobile from our training centers, 
such as Cripple Creek and Brooklyn. They arrive in Mobile and 
there is no place to house them. They come in at odd hours, and the 
ships are not ready to receive them. The port director has the job 
of finding a place to berth those men. At present I only have space 
where I can berth 12 men. For a while the Army berthed them in 
their ballroom at their recreation center on cots. I have had gun 
crews come in when I did not have space for them and they would 
have to find what quarters they could in the city of Mobile until the 
next morning. When we get our barracks constructed, that will be 
taken care of, but that will be about 3 months from now. 

Mr. Arnold. Has construction started? 

Commander Langworthy. No, sir; but the plans have been ap- 
proved, and we have no trouble, I understand, with priorities. I 
imagine, with a little pressure from Washington, the Navy will ex- 
pedite construction. 


Mr. Arnold. Do you have any other recommendations as to what 
is needed besides these projects you spoke of? 


Commander Langworthy. That doesn't cover all of our problems. 
We have about 200 civilian employees of the Navy at Mobile, and at 
least 180 Coast Guardmen, who are under the control of the Navy, 
also living in Mobile in very unsatisfactory conditions. Now, while 
the civilian employees who are attached to the shipyards can terminate 
their work if they are not satisfied with their living conditions and 
move elsewhere, the civilian employees for the Navy can't do so, be- 
cause they are practically all civil-service employees, and it is the same 
way with the Coast Guard. I had a conference with the commander 
of the Coast Guard before I left Mobile, and he said, "I have 180 men 
without quarters. There are 210 Coast Guardmen in Mobile, and 
there are quarters for 30. The other 180 are living in boarding houses 
and rooming houses of Mobile." And during the course of our con- 
versation he pointed to a small, dingy-looking hotel a block from his 
quarters. He said, "In that building six men are occupying one room 
on cots, for which they are paying 75 cents each per day." 

The Chairman. You retired prior to the war? 

Commander Langworthy. I have been retired since 1931. 

The Chairman. I am very glad you were available to be called back 
for this work, for I am sure from your testimony you are splendidly 
equipped to handle it. You indicated that your housing problem could 
be hurried up a little in Washington? 

Commander Langworthy. I imagine it could if this committee- 
would so express a wish. 


One of the most important problems is the housing of officers. We 
have in Mobile approximately 50 naval officers, of whom most are- 
junior officers, ensigns and junior lieutenants. The pay of these young 
officers at the most is $180 a month, and they are quite desperate. 
They say they cannot afford to pay the rentals they have to pay in 
Mobile for the inadequate quarters they are obliged to live in — they 
are paying from $40 to $50 to $60 or $70 a month— and have enough to • 
live on. 

The Chairman. Are many of them married? 

Commander Langworthy. Quite a few, because they are college 
men who have been in business 5 or 6 years, and they have given up 
good positions to come in the service and they also take a tremendous 
reduction in salary. I have had two or three of them tell me if condi- 
tions were not improved in some way, they were going to ask to be 
detached and sent to some other city. 

The Chairman. What about their wives and children; do they 
bring them with them? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. And housing becomes more acute? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; and, while we have 50' 
officers there now the number is increasing and will increase much 


The Chairman. It reaches into the morale of your men, too, if 
they don't have adequate housing? 


Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; and for one other reason. It 
is surprising that Mobile has made no concessions to the Army and the 
Navy. In northern cities, such as New York City or Boston, when- 
ever we come into port, there doesn't seem to be enough that people 
can do for us. They give us reduced rates at hotels and on theater 
tickets and those things. But there hasn't been one single concession 
given to the Navy in Mobile, not even by the large hotels and theaters. 
They refuse to give officers reduced rates. I have told them what they 
are doing in other cities, but it has had no effect. And I think that 
has had a good deal to do toward creating dissatisfaction, to feel that 
Mobile isn't interested enough in them to give them some sort of con- 
cessions, as is done in other cities in the country. 


The Chairman. It is a very valuable port? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; I think Mobile has one of the 
finest harbors and ports in the Gulf of Mexico. 

The Chairman: With fine protection? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir; it is one of the easiest places to 
protect, and we have space for a large number of ships and large 
railroad facilities. And Mobile should be a much larger port than it is. 
But it is increasing at quite a rapid rate. 

Mr. Arnold. Do you have any difficulty getting labor, construction 
men and repair men? 

Commander Langworthy. The Navy does not hire these. They 
are hired by the shipyards. All work on Navy ships is accomplished 
by civilian employees. The rate of construction progress on our 
ships depends on the rate of employment of labor at the shipyards. 

Mr. Arnold. Has your repair work been held up at all on account 
of labor shortage at the shipbuilding yards? 

Commander Langworthy. Not to any appreciable extent as yet. 
But when the building program at the Alabama Dry dock and Ship- 
building Corporation gets underway there might be delays depending 
on whether or not they are successful in employing sufficient labor to 
undertake the additional construction. 

Mr. Arnold. I take it from this the housing condition is being 
taken care of? 

Commander Langworthy. The housing for Navy personnel is be- 
ing taken care of by the Navy. 

Mr. Arnold. Is private building proceeding rapidly in Mobile? 

Commander Langworthy. I do not believe that it is at present. 
There was considerable but I do not know of any at present. I think 
that there are many who would like to start construction but it 
depends on whether or not they can get priorities on necessary 

Mr. Arnold. Has it been declared a defense area? 

Commander Langworthy. Yes, sir. I happen to be a member of 
the Mobile Emergency War Committee, and I am quite familiar with 



! ^SC4G0ULA^4v 





s two shipyard workers have jobs in Mobile but they live in Paseagoula, about 40 miles away. When 
quit work in the afternoons, they make their way to the highway to thumb a ride home for the night. 



'icturetakenofoneof the many parking lots that arc now operating in M 
means of parking in the city now. Many of the small streets do not allow parking < 
are still jammed with traffic. 

practically the only 
hem and the streets 


i 03.5 

- 1-* 



a .2 • 

r - - 
- '77 ffi 



2 3 


3 s= 

O 03 


the work that has been projected in Mobile from that angle, and what 
is being planned in the way of houses. 

Mr. Arnold. What is the total number of units? 

Commander Langworthy. 5,610; that is, exclusive of the Navy. 
But construction has not been started as yet. 

The Chairman. Of course the load on the Navy has increased tre- 
mendously. Are you having any trouble with enlistments? 


Commander Langworthy. No, sir; more in getting officers. We 
are getting them, but it takes some time to train them. We are 
facing a problem of obtaining a sufficient number of trained officers to 
man our ships. We are training them as fast as we can. But there 
is no point in trying to gloss over the fact that we are in need of trained 

The Chairman. What about the Naval Academy; how many, 
approximately, do you draw from them a year? 

Commander Langworthy. I do not know at present. I imagine 
500 or 600, but that takes care of a very small part of our war needs. 
We feel very fortunate whenever we can get a graduate from Annapolis 
for any duty, for he is very thoroughly indoctrinated and ready to 
take his position for any duty assigned. But the boys from college, 
we cannot expect that of them. We have to give them a certain 
amount of preliminary training. They are very intelligent and 
willing, but they lack the background. 

Mr. Arnold.' You mean after they have their $900 training they 
are still untrained? 

Commander Langworthy. You know hi the old days, before this 
present war, in the Navy our rule was that no officer was considered 
trained to take independent command until he has had 8 years' 
experience — 8 years in the service after graduation. 

Mr. Arnold. I suggest, Commander — I don't think you have here- 
tofore submitted a statement — if you have a statement or papers 
you wish to leave, we will make it pait of the record. 

Commander Langworthy. I submitted them to Mr. Burke. 

(The paper referred to is as follows:) 


Mobile, Ala., May 2, 1942. 
I am very pleased to give a brief outline of the problems which have confronted 
the various naval activities in the port of Mobile since the beginning of the present 
war emergency and which are continuing to date. 


The Navy has in the port of Mobile a considerable number of civilian employees 
who are employed in the office of the supervisor of shipbuilding at the Gulf Ship- 
building Co. at Chickasaw, and in the offices of the assistant district material 
officer and the cost inspector located at the Alabama Dry Docks & Shipbuilding 
Co., lower yard. There are also other civilian employees, in a lesser number, 
located in the various other naval activities in this port, such as in the offices of 
the port director, Naval Intelligence and Public Relations. A rough estimate of 
the total number of civilian employees is at present approximately 200. Most 
of them are civil-service employees. These emplo.yees are faced with the same 
conditions as regards acute shortage of housing, the high cost of rentals and the 
60396— 42— pt. 32 13 


cost of living in general. Many of them have families and they face the same 
conditions as regards health, lack of proper educational and hospital facilities. 
While the number of these employees is now approximately 200, this number 
will increase considerably as time progresses. 

There are, at present, in the port of Mobile a permanent staff of Navy personnel 
numbering approximately 150, of which approximately 100 are enlisted men and 
50 officers. The Navy Department has erected permanent barracks for housing 
most of the enlisted men. This is located at Choctaw Point, and is known as 
the United States Navy section base. There are no Government quarters in this 
area for the housing of officers, so they are obliged to find housing in the cities 
of Mobile and Chickasaw. The great majority of them are married officers with 
families, all of them, without exception, are paying excessive rentals for their 
places of domicile. Many of them are living in houses which are hardly suitable 
for officers. In addition they are obliged to pay exceedingly high rentals for these 
unsatisfactory living places. I have personal knowledge of several officers who 
have stated that they have requested duty elsewhere or were considering doing so, 
because they cannot obtain suitable places in which to live in Mobile in keeping 
with their salaries. 

The psychological effect upon these officers by the inadequate housing and 
education and hospital facilities to care for them and their families, not only 
causes discontent, but tends to lessen their efficiency. And if you will add to the 
foregoing the high prices which they are obliged to pay for their houses, and the 
high cost of living in general, you can well understand the reasons for their dis- 
content and the impairment of their efficiency. 

A situation which has confronted the office of the port director during the past 
4 or 5 months has been the temporary quartering of armed guard crews ordered 
to Mobile for service on board merchant vessels which are sent to the port of 
Mobile for the installation of guns and gun crews to man them. In the large 
majority of these ships the gun crews have arrived from one to several days before 
the ships were ready to take care ot tnem. In such cases this office has been 
faced with the problem of finding quarters for them. In the months of December 
and January there were no naval quarters of any kind in this city and this office 
was obliged to call upon the assistance of the Army in providing them with 
temporary quarters in the ballroom of the recreation center at Brookley Field. 

In January the Navy completed at Choctaw Point a barracks for the quartering 
of enlisted men and officers attached to the inshore patrol at this port. No 
provision, though, was made in these barracks for the quartering of armed guard 
crews, but by the use of cots we are now able to temporarily lodge about a dozen 
men at this place. This taxes their facilities to the limit. There have been 
many occasions though, when 20 to 30 men have had to be assigned temporary 
quarters, and it has presented this office with a very difficult problem when there 
are no quarters to be had, and it stands to reason that these men cannot afford 
to pay for their own lodging and subsistence in the hotels in Mobile, none of 
which make concessions in the matter of price for naval personnel officers, or 
enlisted men. 


During the month of January a Navy ship arrived in Mobile for conversion. 
On the ship were approximately 200 officers and men. During certain periods 
of this conversion it was planned to remove the men from the ship so that the 
necessary work could be proceeded with without there being any personnel on 
board which would interfere with the work. The port director was requested to 
provide living accommodations in Mobile for these officers and men. The editor 
of the Mobile Press Register kindly volunteered to publish an advertisement in 
his paper requesting the citizens of Mobile to inform the Navy what quarters 
they had available for the temporary housing of this personnel. About 100 
replies were received and the officers of this ship made a survey of the facilities 
offered. Thev reported that they were not only extremely unsuitable but in 
sone cases were not fit for any individual, much less Navy personnel whom the 
Government desires quartered in clean quarters, which are provided with proper 
washing and toilet facilities. In addition the prices asked were way out of pro- 
portion to the facilities offered. 

The Coast Guard, which is now under the jurisdiction of the Navy Depart- 
ment, has approximately 210 officers and men in Mobile. They have Govern- 
ment quarters for 30 of these men, thus 180 of their personnel are living in room- 
ing houses, boarding houses, etc., in the city of Mobile and are confronted with 
the same conditions as regards unsuitability of quarters, high prices for the same 


and general high cost of living. The same remarks apply to this activity as 
stated in paragraph 4 above in regard to Naval personnel. 


A number of Navy ships are being constructed in the yard of the Gulf Ship- 
building Co. at Chickasaw. As their completion date approaches the Navy will 
order officers and crews here to man them. At present there are no quarters in 
the cities of Mobile or Chickasaw for the quartering of these men. To meet 
this deficiency the Navy is planning the erection of barracks in Chicakasaw for 
the housing of this personnel. These barracks must be completed prior to the 
ordering here of officers and men to man the ships. It is my understanding that 
this work will get under way as soon as possible and all efforts will be made to 
complete these barracks expeditiously so as to avoid delay in the manning of these 

In the very near future work will be started on ships for the Navy at the Ala- 
bama Dry Docks & Shipbuilding Co. The same conditions confront the Navy 
in this yard as at Chickasaw, as ships are being built Navy personnel, officers 
and men, will be ordered here to man them. At present there are no quarters to 
house this personnel. The Navy is undertaking the immediate construction of 
barracks near the Alabama Dry Docks & Shipbuilding Co. for the housing of 
officers and men. This work must be undertaken as soon as possible in order to 
have the barracks completed in time to receive this personnel. It is hoped that 
these quarters will be sufficient for the temporary housing of armed guard crews 
who are awaiting assignment to ships being armed in this port. 

A recapitulation of the foregoing will show that at present the need of housing 
for Navy and Coast Guard personnel in this port is extremely acute. It will be 
several months before the barracks now contemplated for the housing of Navy 
enlisted men will be completed. When this has been taken care of, some time in 
the future at an indefinite date, there still will exist the problem of obtaining 
suitable housing for naval officers and Coast Guard personnel on duty in this port, 
also civilian employees in the various naval activities. The latter employees will 
have to be housed in the various housing projects now being planned for the 
housing of civilian employees in the city of Mobile. As civil-service employees 
their employment is on a more or less permanent basis and thus they are not able 
to terminate their employment because of unsatisfactory living conditions and 
move to another locality where living conditions might be more satisfactory, as 
are the civilian employees working in the shipyards. Thus housing for them 
should be considered as of a permanent basis. While there are approximately 
200 such employees at this time, this number will undoubtedly be greatly increased 
as the war effort continues. 


To alleviate the conditions discussed in this letter I desire to make the follow- 
ing recommendations: 

(a) That the erection of adequate housing facilities in Mobile be proceeded 
with as soon as possible and that space be allocated in these various projects 
for the housing of civilian personnel employed in the various naval activities 
in this city and in the city of Chickasaw. 

The housing of the Navy enlisted personnel is a problem for the Navy to solve 
and steps are being taken to solve it by the erection of suitable barracks. The 
problem, though, of providing suitable homes for the Naval officers in the port 
of Mobile and at Chickasaw will still remain unsolved as no provision is being 
made by the Navy for the erection of quarters for officers. They will continue 
to be obliged to find houses in Mobile in which to live, which, at the present 
writing, seems next to impossible. 

(6) That rental agents and property owners in Mobile be required to conform 
to the Government's orders in regard to freezing of rental prices as of April 
1, 1941. There apparently has been no effort made in this city to conform with 
the Government's orders in this respect. 

Prices have been raised since the Government's order was issued and are 
continuing to be raised in direct violation of the Price Administration's orders. 

The Chairman. If anything further comes to your mind within the 
next 10 days or 2 weeks, just write the Tolan committee at Washing- 
ton, D. C, and it will be included. And thank you very much, 


We will now call the newspaper panel. You gentlemen whose 
names are called, please come up. 
Newspaper panel composed of — 








Only Mr. Zuber is not present, and we hope he will come in a little 

Mr. Sparkman. We have received statements from most of you 
gentlemen, which I shall ask be inserted in the record at this point. 
Your discussions may be based upon the material in your statements 
or you may bring up any other subjects you feel will be of interest to 
the committee in its investigation. 

(The following statements were introduced:) 


Report on the City of Decatur 

In the year 1820 President James Monroe instructed the surveyor-general to 
choose a site for a town to be named "Decatur" in honor of the great naval 
commodore, Stephen Decatur. 

Governmental interest seemingly ended then for nearly a century; and with a 
financial background made up almost entirely of an agricultural cotton economy, 
there was little or no industry in the area with the exception of sawmills and 
cotton gins. The case for perhaps 90 percent of the people was hopeless. They 
borrowed money in the spring and depended entirely upon a gamble in the price 
of cotton to pay out in the harvest. 

Seeing the utter futility of the situation, the people of Decatur started the 
long and laborious task of trying to balance agricultural shortcomings in income 
with industry. About 1880 railway shops located at Decatur and for many 
years the town was content with this dominating pay roll. The general railroad 
strike in 1922, Nation-wide in extent, was the signal for this industry starting 
downgrade, exhilarated by the growing competition for the railroads of highway 
commerce. The railroads started the centralization of operations with the result 
that many shops at intermediate points were discontinued. 

Decatur did not feel any immediate heavy economic blows after the first World 
War. The railroad shops provided the only industrial pay roll of consequence 
and at that time there was no large-scale movement to curtail. Times were good 
and the gradual decline of farm prices were not noticed materially until the early 

Meanwhile, with the determination growing that the city must not be dependent 
upon a single industry, the people of the Decatur area put up substantial sums of 
money to attract industry of a diversified nature and succeeded in several instances 
in adding to the growing pay roll. 

The depression which began in 1929 saw the complete removal of the railway 
shops and the failure of two other major industrial plants. Three of four banking 
institutions were in financial difficulties. 


Decatur, with every natural advantage, was in a bad way. 

Her people decided to take the fight into their own hands and to study other 
communities, their successes and shortcomings and in the dark days of 1932 a 
chamber of commerce was formed with just enough money with which to operate. 
The march was begun. 

Diversification in industry and on the farm was the goal and is still the goal, 
with the result that today Decatur has 64 firms manufacturing a product, employ- 
ing 3,500 men and women and with a fourth of that number living on the farms 
surrounding Decatur. These 64 manufacturing concerns employ all the way 
from as small a number as 6 people up to 900 people. 

Notable growth has been witnessed since the Tennessee Valley Authority was 
created by the Congress, growth reflected in agriculture as well as in industry. 
To my mind the Authority is operated on a sound basis. The very act prevents 
Tennessee Valley Authority from seeking industry, but the development of the 
Tennessee River is in itself the real factor in attracting industry. A flour mill, 
two shipyards and a concrete-pipe company have been added to the Decatur 
industrial picture since the advent of Tennessee Valley Authority, deep water 
navigation is largely responsible for three of these and the construction of the 
arsenal near Huntsville is responsible for the fourth. Meanwhile, the people of 
Decatur have kept everlastingly at it in developing industry to use the raw 
materials of the Decatur area, benefiting the farm regions in the use of such 
products. Decatur today has a cash market for cotton, corn, timber, livestock, 
farm produce. The farmer can come to Decatur any day in the year and get 
cash, at the prevailing market price for any farm product. Much attention has 
been given the dairying industry with the result that milk production in the valley 
in the past 4 years is considered phenominal. Morgan County's population 
at present is approximately 50,000, with 3,500 employed in industry and 1,000 
employed in other business and professional capacities, leaving the remainder 
dependent upon farming operations. 


In 1940 the population of Decatur was 16,604 by the Federal census and it is 
our estimate that the population is now about 19,000 to 20,000. The industrial 
growth in war production has increased housing demands considerably and it is 
my opinion that today, if there were no additional war activity in this immediate 
area that at least 200 additional houses are desirable. At the present time there 
are approximately 1,000 Morgan countians working in the arsenal near Hunts- 
ville, this number was not included in my previous estimate of persons gainfully 
employed in the industry in the Decatur area. It is also my opinion that as 
shipyard activity goes more toward capacity and as the primary aviation school at 
Decatur reaches capacity, it is essential that greater hospital facilities be provided, 
as well as additional educational facilities. Both are now at capacity. 

I have not compiled a private construction estimate since the beginning of the 
war program in 1940, but I should say perhaps better than 150 homes have been 
built for ownership in Decatur proper in that period. There is no vacancy at 
Decatur at this time and people are living in garages, servant quarters and old 
houses remodeled into apartments and glad to get them. With additional 
expansion of war facilities in the Decatur area there must be immediate attention 
given to housing, hospitalization, and educational facilities. May I say here that 
there are some four firms ready now to build better than 200 houses for rental or 
sale purposes if priorities are granted. 

From a rental standpoint the people of Decatur have been most reasonable. 
Only in a few instances have we learned of attempts to gouge people and in each 
such instance we have attempted to discourage any such practice. Recently a 
rent-freezing order included the Decatur area and we should not experience the 
difficulties of some other war area communities in Alabama. 

Houses must be built in Decatur to meet the needs now existing and the needs 
certain to grow in the future. I have not been in favor of public housing in 
Decatur and I do not believe it to be necessary if the Government agencies 
involved will allow the private concerns to go ahead. However, unless this is 
done, public housing will be necessary. 

We are not a wandering people, our population is steady, we have continually 
encouraged home ownership with the result that approximately 65 percent of 
our people own their own homes or are in the process of ownership. We believe 
this tends toward a substantial type of citizenship, interested in the general welfare 
of the communitv, State, and Nation. 



As to activities which must follow after the war is at an end, I trust we shall not 
make the mistake of letting everybody look out for himself in the manner of 
Mr. Hoover. We have learned much in the years from 1933 to 1942. We have 
learned that an additional tax burden is to be desired intead of unemployment. 
We have learned that every man has a right to make a living, the opportunity to 
work. We have learned that public construction is a decided asset to any com- 
munity and tends to reach far beyond the immediate employment of people who 
would not otherwise be employed. It is a builder of morale, of community pride 
and in turn an asset to the State and to the Nation. It is my judgment that every 
community should now be planning a public works program of lasting benefit, 
useful construction, to follow when the let-down in industrial production follows 
the close of the war. It is also my judgment that communities must stick as 
closely to the principle of paying as they go as possible, retiring indebtedness. A 
community free of bonded debt is a community in which the tax dollar can be 
spent in public service. 

I am glad to have had this invitation to present this statement and I appreciate 
the thought of you Members of the Congress on this committee. 

We, in the Tennessee Valley area, have our eyes on winning this war. We who 
are fortunate can serve our nation in the armed forces, we who are less fortunate 
can serve gloriously at home in the various capacities to which we are called. We 
want all treated alike in the war effort, we are willing to make every effort neces- 
sary to the effort, we want no further successful attacks upon the Tennessee Valley 
Authority, and we want a well planned program of public works to follow this war 
to cushion the let-down that must come. 


The Coosa Valley Area 

In the Coosa Valley industrial area of Alabama where, in a nontechnical way, 
I am acquainted with conditions, the pattern of life has been changed more in 
the last 3 years by the war program than by the previous 30 years of slow develop- 


Thousands have moved from out of State and from nearby farms into such 
cities as Anniston, Jacksonville, Talladega, and Sylacauga, placing a premium 
on houses and forcing the occupancy of a good many substandard units that had 
been abandoned. At the same time a better return from rents has brought 
improvements to houses and apartments, with the result that the maintenance of 
existing units probably has reached a slightly higher standard. The crowding 
of living units, however, is a serious problem everywhere. Federal housing 
projects have served to provide a challenging standard, but have hardly touched 
the needs. 

In Calhoun County during the last 10 years there has been a noticeable move- 
ment of industrial workers toward suburban areas. With their cars they were 
able to live 5 or 10 miles out in the country as economically, and in some ways 
under more favorable conditions, than in Anniston. Now with the tire shortage 
these people are in trouble, for many homes are on little-traveled roads which 
offer slight opportunity for cooperative travel arrangements. Anniston indus- 
trial managers as well as the workers are worried, for with already crowded 
conditions in the city there seems to be no satisfactory solution. 


Farm operators in our section are desperately short of labor. Childersburg, 
Fort McClellan, the Anniston Ordnance Depot, and other wartime establishments 
have skimmed not only the surplus of our farm labor, but have cut down into the 
basic and essential labor supply. 

Older men, smaller children, and the women are in the fields now in greater 
numbers than I have ever seen them. Much submarginal land and some good 
land, which in recent years has been cultivated, will not be touched in 1942. In 
order to reach farm production goals needed for the war it will be necessary in 
our part of the State for the small farmer to produce more per acre than in previous 


years. To this end we feel that the program of the Farm Security Administration 
and of other Government agencies supporting the small farmer is altogether 

With reference to submarginal lands being dropped from cultivation in Alabama 
because of the labor shortage, let me say that I hope it will never be returned to 
cultivation. It never should have been plowed the first time. The labor shortage 
may force much of this land back into woodland or possibly into grazing land; 
if so, this will be a valuable byproduct of the labor shortage. 


Youth in the Coosa Valley area has been affected adversely in several ways by 
the swift current of in-migration. Children of new workers have packed and 
jammed the schools and in some instances have brought with them very different 
moral and social concepts. Government aid in providing school facilities has 
helped some to relieve the crowded conditions, but in many places these benefits 
have been late in arriving and will be of little value until the school year 1942-43. 
A good many youths have abandoned their education to accept jobs that pay them 
as much as their fathers were making 3 years ago. The loss of able teachers to 
war industry, too, has been severe. Some faculties have been cut in two as poorly 
paid teachers accepted decently paying jobs in war industry. In general the diffi- 
culties in the schools have pointed up the growing need for Federal aid to education. 

Alabama schools and colleges have rallied splendidly to meet the war need for 
trained workers, but it appears that further coordination of these efforts would 
get better results. A survey might reveal, also, that the war has made available 
certain training facilities that could be made good use of by Federal agencies. 

I believe the Coosa Valley area has made a remarkably good temporary adjust- 
ment to the military and industrial wave brought over us by the war. If these 
new wartime factors are to bring permanent benefits to our life in Alabama, how- 
ever, careful guidance must be provided by alert social agencies of city, county, 
State, and Federal Governments. 


There can be no debate with the thesis that American resources, human and 
material, must be focused on winning the war. This means that those of us who 
have had special interests, of whatever sort, those of us who have been attempting 
to build a more democratic America, economic, social, political, must redirect our 
energies. It is not easy to toss off habits of mind of years' standing or the goals 
toward which we have worked. But no one conscious of the imperatives of this 
struggle can fail to do so. 

While this be true, we can in planning the war choose those alternatives — where 
no sacrifice of speed or military power is involved — which will make the task of a 
post-war world simpler. 

While winning the war is essential, America is properly conscious of the fact 
that winning a peace is equally essential if the sacrifices of war are to be justified. 
To be complacent in preparation for peace, to merely accept peace in a defensive 
frame of mind, is as dangerous as the psychology of the military defensive. Win- 
ning the peace will require an alert, aggressive "follow through" in a difficult 
period when spiritual, mental, and physical fatigue are apt to be heavy upon us. 

Winning the peace, then, will require that America be strong and wholesome 
internally. If, when the last shot has been fired, America is in a chaotic condition, 
if it has within itself the cancers of widespread economic, political, and social 
maladjustments, these maladies may endanger the winning of the peace. 

Thus, despite the fact that each day we must do our utmost to win a military 
victory, it is sound to look beyond the urgency of today's battle and give some 
consideration to the need for an America strong enough "to win the peace. 

In many cases choosing the path to military victory is identical with that of 
choosing an America that will be in sufficiently good health internally to face and 
solve the problems of the post-war. 

It is on this basis that I speak of Alabama. This is not a time to speak of the 
inequities between groups — economic, geographical, racial — except as these 
inequities bear upon the winning of the war and the peace. I for one am willing 
to forget the chains of economic colonialism in which the South has languished 
for, lo, these many generations — tariffs, freight-rate differentials, control of 
patents, a rigged economic system manipulated for the benefit of the Northeast. 


It must be recognized, however, that several factors are now in operation in the 
South which are preventing it from making its full contribution to winning the 
war. These same shortcomings, likewise, will put the South at a disadvantage 
for its role in the America of the future, the America which must be strong to win 
the peace. 

The base of the South's economic system, the structure of which is characterized 
by relative poverty, is agriculture. 

The one basic problem of Southern agriculture, and a primary explanation for 
the relative poverty of all Southerners, is pressure on the land. 

1. Alabama has slightly more than six tillable acres for each farm person. 

2. Iowa has about 25 tillable acres for each farm person. 

3. This 4 to 1 ratio is only one part of the explanation for disparity of income. 
Iowa farmland produce, annually about 50 bushels of corn to the acre; Alabama's 
average is in the neighborhood of 12 to 13 bushels. 

The war being a period of dynamic changes in economic development could 
provide an opportunity for siphoning off much of this excess rural population to 
be absorbed in urban or industrial work. At the same time, in a Nation faced 
by shortages of manpower here is a pool of labor that could be utilized if properly 
trained. . 

In Alabama most of the new opportunities for work have been in Government- 
sponsored developments— airfields, shell factories, military establishments. The 
shipyards have provided the largest single employment opportunity. It would 
be foolish to think that this development is permanent. 

The permanent developments most needed in Alabama have been an expansion 
of the skilled labor force, an expansion of raw-materials production, and an expan- 
sion of processing plants, which could be converted to peacetime production once 
the war is over. Alabama has not converted its existing plants; Alabama has 
been slow to develop subcontracting. 

Newspaper offices receive papers from many cities. I have been interested to 
see how effectively scores of cities and States, have converted established plants 
and built new ones for war production. Generally speaking, it seems that 
"them that has, gits." ,,.„■, n 

The expansion in fabricating industries has been one that has followed, generally, 
in geometric proportions to those already in existence. In the Detroit area, for 
instance, the number of skilled workers and the amount of floor space is being 
doubled. In other cities, varying in size from St. Louis, Mo., to DeLand, Fla., 
exceptional use has been made of available resources through conversion of 
individual plants or pooling. Where this program has succeeded it has been due 
to local and State leadership, not Washington. _ _ 

In Alabama little has been done. For the 4 months before Pearl Harbor, it is 
my impression from information available that the Office of Contracts Distribu- 
tion of the Office of Production Management in Birmingham did little or nothing. 
Since Pearl Harbor the name of the over-all production agency has been changed, 
but the same attitude is operating in Birmingham. _ 

Technically many barriers have been removed. Contracts are now negotiated. 
It is said to be relatively simple for small plants to get loans, but generally speak- 
ing, the idea of pooling and conversion of facilities has not been sold in Alabama. 
The responsibility, of course, cannot be left to any one individual, but the 
economic prospects of this State would have been improved— and more important 
for the Nation, this State's contribution to the war would have been increased— 
had a man with the requisite qualifications been in charge of contracts distribution 
in this State. It is unfortunate that the South does not have more entrepreneurs, 
more industrial engineers, more executives with the vision and ability to organize 
our resources for war and for the future. , , . r -x 

I have been interested in the educational training program, both because oi its 
relation to the war and the post-war adjustments the South must face. My 
impression is that, until recently at least, job training was handled by men who 
were impressed by the size of the job they were undertaking— but the size was 
impressive only in relation to the past. I do not believe that those in charge of 
the job training programs have grasped the enormity of the task — they have been 
impressed by hundreds, when thousands was the proper standard. They have 
been inclined to wait to make certain a job would be ready for the individual, 
and by the time the job they were waiting for was availbale, four more trained 
men were desperately needed. 

It is my impression that the United States Office of Education had an estab- 
lished policy of refusing to support a training program until employers placed an 
"order" for persons, specifying male and female and race. I do not know whether 


this policy is still followed by the United States Office of Education. If it is, it 
is in contradiction to that of other Government agencies which are desperately 
attempting to build up the necessary work force without regard to sex or race. 

As far as Alabama is concerned, the inclination of thinking people is to view the 
relation of race to the war production program as a production problem and not 
one related to emotional attitudes. Most Alabamians understand that there is 
no chemical expert who can look at a potato and tell whether it was raised by a 
Negro farmer or a white farmer. Most Alabamians understand also that there 
is no coroner who can examine a Jap and tell whether the bullet that killed him 
was fired by a Negro, a Caucasian, a Russian mujik, a Chinese, or the son of a 
member of the British House of Lords. What we need is more potatoes and 
fewer Japs. The question of who raises potatoes and who kills the Japs is one 
which is in the realm of mathematics, not sociology. 

I would like to mention the problem of general education and Federal responsi- 
bility. Is there any person in the United States who, looking back, would not 
now agree that it would have been a sound investment for the Federal Govern- 
ment to have made sizeable grants to the States for education 3 years ago, 2 years 
ago, 1 year ago? 

We cannot undo the failure of the past. Foresight on this question, however, 
is as clear as hindsight. If it is sound to help the South increase its productivity 
for the Nation's benefit in time of war, it is equally sound to help the South 
increase the productivity of its people for the benefit of the Nation at all times. 

No one worthy of consideration profits from the poverty or the ignorance of 
any group within this Nation. Indeed, outside the lightning-rod salesman and 
the venders of some patent nostrums, it is doubtful that anyone has profited from 
poverty or ignorance in the South. 

Finally, the stability of this Nation at the end of the war may be incidental to 
today's job of winning the war. At the same time the task of winning the peace 
is at least a big and important incidental, even if it be classed as such. 


Migration Problems of Mobile 

In submitting this brief to you today on Mobile's migration problems, I do so 
with a feeling of thankfulness and hope. I am thankful for the opportunity.. I 
hope, as a citizen of Mobile, for relief so that the war job assigned us by the 
Government can be accomplished in the quickest possible time. That job is to 
build ships and more ships until our Nation can conquer the threat to throw us 
into totalitarian darkness. 

I am attaching hereto similar briefs from some of our local officials and from the 
executives of some of our larger industries. Their briefs deal with their own 
particular problems. Mine is designed as an over-all picture of the general 
situation as seen from the press box of a newspaperman. 

Mobile is Alabama's only seaport, situated on Mobile Bay, 30 miles from the 
open Gulf of Mexico. We have, among other things, a fine system of docks, 
paper mills, a giant ore reduction plant, two large shipyards, and Brookley Field, 
one of the Government's enormous and important aviation supply and repair 

The city of Mobile itself, according to the 1940 Federal census, had a population 
of 78,720, which represented an increase of 15.4 percent over the 1930 population of 

We have numerous suburbs, including Prichard, Chickasaw, Toulminville, 
Crichton, Plateau, and others which are immediately outside the city limits but 
which are included in metropolitan Mobile. The population of this metropolitan 
area, according to the 1940 census, was 114,906, representing an increase of 18,733 
or 19.5 percent over 1930. 

Mobile County itself, which includes the city, the metropolitan area, and small 
towns outside the metropolitan area, had a 1940 population of 141,974. It might 
be noted that 55.4 percent of the county population is situated within the cor- 
porate limits of the city. 

There can be no doubt that a tremendous and rapid in-migration has created 
many acute problems for Mobile, not only local in their effect but Nation-wide 
inasmuch as the success of the Government's war effort depends on how quickly 
and thoroughly we can build ships and other implements of war. When the 
situation arises where our shipyards cannot obtain labor because of a shortage in 


housing facilities and other necessities of life, and when we cannot find rooms to 
accommodate the thousands of civilian and military personnel moving into 
Brookley Field, then it is time for the Federal Government to lend us all possible 
assistance. That situation exists in Mobile now. 

Conservatively, it can be estimated that the population of metropolitan Mobile 
today is close to 175,000 as compared to the 114,906 as shown in the 1940 census. 
The bulk of this new population has settled within the corporate limits of the 
city or in the suburbs directly adjacent to the city. 

The sharp influx of shipbuilders, plus the Brookley Field personnel, has been 
responsible for the major portion of this new population. 

These figures show the rapid rate of increase in the number of shipyard workers 
in Mobile in recent years: 

March 1939 791 

December 1940 3, 359 

September 1941 7, 792 

February 1942 15,552 

March 1942 17,500 

You will note from the attached briefs 1 that Mr. J. M. Griser, vice president 
of the Alabama Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co., says that on May 1, 1942, his 
plant was employing 10,500 employees, and that during the next 12 months this 
figure will be increased to 20,500, half of the 10,000 new men scheduled to begin 
work within the next 5 months. 

Mr. Harry Hill, vice president and general manager of another shipyard, the 
Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation at suburban Chickasaw, says in his brief 2 that at 
the end of March 1942 his plant was employing 8,383 persons and that under 
present contracts the total number of workers will be increased to 12,000. 

Naturally, it can be seen that Mobile's problems due to this great and sudden 
in-migration have only started. It can readily be assumed that if the present 
number of shipbuilding employees is to be doubled to take care of existing contracts, 
then additional thousands of workers will have to be employed to carry on the job 
of building more ships under new contracts which can lie expected momentarily. 

There have been all types of estimates as to what Mobile's population will be 
by the end of 1942, and it seems conservative and reasonable to state that our 
metropolitan area will have at least 200,000 persons by that time, as against 
114,906 shown by the 1940 census. 

Mr. Hill's brief says: 

"Our labor turnover has increased to 3.7 percent and, from our investigations, 
the increase is the result of inadequate housing as we have employees living in 
tents and in automobiles. This is at present the most critical phase of the labor 

Mr. Griser says: 

"Over a period of 4 pay weeks beginning March 31, 1942, and ending April 
21, 1942, the average number of employes was 11,161 and terminations 531, 
indicating a labor turnover of 4.75 percent. A large portion of terminations are 
due to inadequate housing. Our industrial relations department records a daily 
average of over 75 employe complaints of inability to obtain living quarters." 

Mobile is doing everything possible in an effort to cope not only with this 
housing situation but with kindred problems such as water, sewage, public health, 
transportation, and recreation facilities. 

As to housing, there were 2,300 new housing units constructed between January 
1, 1940, and February 1, 1942, in the metropolitan area. This rate of construction 
seems reasonably fast but at the same time is still not fast enough to balance the 
sharp climb in the in-migration index. 

There is no doubt that the chief reason for this in-migration is the war program 
and, should this committee have the authority to recommend, I might suggest 
that the various Federal works agencies be apprised of the situation here and of 
the vital part Mobile is playing in the defense set-up so that we can collaborate 
on obtaining definite and quick relief to prevent the work schedule from being 

There are numerous attendant problems which have arisen in connection with 
the in-migration, such as transportation, public health, and recreation. 

The city's water supply is being taxed heavily, but a new filtration plant with a 
20,000, 000-gallon daily capacity already has received Federal approval. 

Our hospitals are jammed and space is at a premium. We have filed applica- 
tion with the Defense Public Works for relief in this respect. 

1 P. 12211. 
» P. 12113. 


Our schools are suffering under this impact of new population. Whereas our 
public high school was constructed for 2,460 students, there are now 2,9S3 pupils 
attending, and educational authorities estimate that by fall the yet-to-arrive 
defense families will bring 2,500 more children of school age with them. 

I hope and might suggest that whatever is done in Mobile to alleviate these 
conditions is done on a permanent basis because I can see, although I do not 
attempt to be a far-range economic planner, great possibilities for Alabama's 
port city. It cannot logically be assumed that the war will end overnight and 
that all of the war industries will automatically cease production. The climax 
of the war probably will create as many intricate problems as the declaration of 
war, in that the replacement of our lost merchant marine and naval fleet will, or 
at least should be, one of the Nation's major objectives. 

We have learned since September of 1939 the importance of assuming and main- 
taining control of the seas, both in peacetime and in wartime, and if that is one of 
America's outstanding post-war goals, then the so-called boom in Mobile at 
present will have been proven as no boom at all but a turn in economic events that 
has blessed our city, because we will continue to be called upon to build those 

It might reasonably be assumed, too, that the period of reconstruction in Europe 
will call for more ships and more of our American-made goods which must be 
transported in freight ships built in our American ports. That job of assisting 
in Europe's reconstruction program will not, of course, be as important as winning 
the war, but it will be a far-reaching program because of .its objective of restoring 
order from chaos and restoring it as quickly as humanly and mechanically possible. 

Mobile has proven that it can build the ships. We are rolling them off the ways 
with marvelous regularity. 

We hope to continue that program, even after the conclusion of hostilities, with 
the Federal Government's assistance now in converting our seaport into a perma- 
nent and ideal workshop for Uncle Sam. 


Mr. Sparkman. I want you gentlemen to feel that this discussion 
is just as flexible as you want to make it, and I hope you will all enter 
into it. And even though I may direct a question to any particular 
person, I want any of you to feel free to butt right in. 

I might say this in the beginning: Most of us know, I am sure, that 
these hearings were scheduled for last fall, and most of the preparatory 
work was done prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor. They were sus- 
pended at the time, and later the hearings were scheduled for the latter 
part of February. We were within 2 or 3 days of coming here when 
the hearings were again postponed at the request of the Government, 
in order that this committee coidd go to the west coast and study a 
problem which at that time was very critical and pressing, the evacua- 
tion of enemy aliens from that strategic military section of our country. 
Therefore, we had to postpone the hearings again. 

I am sure we all realize that the primary purpose of all of us now is 
to win the war, and, furthermore, we appreciate the fact that some 
people say that while we are engaged in winning the war, we ought to 
give thought to what is going to happen after the war. I saw one of 
Gould Beech's editorials reproduced in which that was dealt with. 
I think we are going to have to do some thinking about these post-war 

We have had periods in this country when there have been tremen- 
dous shiftings of population. That is why this committee was set 
up, because of the great shifting of population from our Plains States 
to Arizona, New Mexico, California, and the far Western States, 
seeking a means of making a living. It had become such a problem 
that Congress set up this committee, and directed us to study that 
problem of migration. We did study it, and made our report and 


finished our work. Then came our war program, which caused the 
greatest shifting of population this country has ever seen, and Congress 
directed us to go see what this war program was doing to the shifting 
of population. Since that time we have been studying the defense 

We know when the catastrophe came in the early thirties we 
started with a lot of makeshifts for taking care of our problems. We 
had men raking leaves and cleaning off ditch banks and doing things 
that amounted to little or nothing simply because we hadn't had time 
to organize our efforts. We don't want this to happen again, and we 
think there are at this time a great many things we do need to be 
thinking about. That is why we make no apology for studying these 
post-war problems, although we do concede that our primary purpose 
is winning the war. 


I particularly asked that this panel be put on because I am interested 
in the effect of this war program on our section of the country from the 
standpoint of shifting of population. We sometimes do not think of 
it as such, but our section has been an out-migration section almost 
from the beginning. When the committee was set up, Speaker Wil] 
Bankhead called me and told me he was appointing this committee. 
He said, "Very few people ever realize the importance of the migration 
problem to the Southeast. It is something we are greatly concerned 
with. I am trying to set up a committee that will represent all parts 
of our country, and I want you to serve on that committee as a repre- 
sentative of the South, if you will." Dr. Rupert B. Vance, of the 
University of North Carolina, made a statement that has been much 
quoted. He said that the Southeast was the "seedbed of the Nation." 
I believe we found in our very first hearing in New York to what 
extent the Southeast was furnishing the population for the northeast- 
ern part of the United States. 1 believe in those statistical studies 
we found the Southeast had a reproduction rate of 130 percent, 
whereas there were sections of our country with a reproduction rate 
of only 80 percent. Naturally, to maintain a balance it meant we had 
to send our people into those areas. It meant our section was destined 
to continue to be an out-migration area. 


We are not working to cut out all migration. We think that a 
certain amount of migration is a healthful thing, but it ought to be 
stabilized and controlled. We have made our recommendations as to 
certain things that might serve to stabilize it. The one thing that 
has been hopeful for our section is that there might be an increased 
industrial development which would serve to give us a somewhat 
better balance between industry and agriculture. We have been 
very much encouraged by the development of these war plants, in 
the hope that something permanent might come out of them — at 
least that we might demonstrate to the industrialists of the Nation 
that southern labor was available, that it was adaptable, that it was 
productive, and that industry could thrive in our section. 

I didn't intend to make such a long preliminary statement. But 
I wanted to point out why we have asked you gentlemen to discuss 


what we may expect to be the permanent effects of the impact of the 
war program on this particular area. 

Charlie (Mr. Dobbins), since you are the president of the Alabama 
Press Association, you would make a fine moderator. So, if you will 
just take hold from there on, and make any statement you care to 
make and carry it along as you see fit, we shall be very happy. 


Mr. Dobbins. Mr. Congressman, that is a subject in which every 
editor in Alabama is certainly interested. We have had thousands 
of people come in from out of the State; also thousands of people have 
come off their farms. Our cities have done a fair job of assimilating 
these new people, but we have had some terrific problems. Thus far, 
the Federal Government has given us mighty good assistance. Our 
schools in Anniston, for example, have been crowded to overflowing, 
and there have been some new facilities provided by the Government. 
They are coining rather slowly, and we probably won't get the maxi- 
mum benefits until this coming year, 1942-43. 

We have had some tough problems. There in Anniston we have 
something better than 30,000 soldiers, and we didn't have any recre- 
ation facilities that were at all adequate. The United Service Organi- 
zations have come in and given us, I suppose, some of the best facil- 
ities anywhere in the country, and also in other towns in that area. 
We have been helped tremendously. 


Our farmers right now are suffering pretty seriously from a lack of 
the previous labor surplus. Childersburg, Fort McClellan, and the 
ordnance depot have all helped skim off the labor supply we have had. 
I don't know exactly how our farmers are going to come out. Many 
are in the fields with their women, old folks, and children, as they 
have not been in the memory of most of us. 

Mr. Sparkman. Did you hear Mr. Morgan's testimony with refer- 
ence to labor supply? 

Mr. Dobbins. I did. 

Mr. Sparkman. I think he gave us a new insight into it. I noticed 
you used the term "surplus labor" as he did, that perhaps it wasn't 
a labor shortage; we wouldn't know until we tightened our belts and 
found out how much more labor was available? 

Mr. Dobbins. Yes, sir; I agree with him that the war industries 
have skimmed off our surplus. I agree they did that at first. But 
they are going beyond that. They are going into our basic supply now. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about the effect of the Selective Service on 
farm labor? 

Mr. Dobbins. That has accentuated it. That has accentuated the 

> Mr. Sparkman. The draft officials tell me they have difficulty get- 
ting boys in the South to ask for deferment; that it is not a matter of 
not granting it to them, but of getting these farm boys to take it- 
Go ahead with your statement. 

Mr. Dobbins. That is about all I care to make as an opening 
statement. One of our editorial writers has done a good bit of think- 
ing about the permanent effects of the war program. I would like to 
hear from Gould Beech on that- 


Mr. Beech. I am not an expert on it. But it seems to me that in 
view of the things we have been getting, most of the Government- 
sponsored or Government-initiated developments — with the excep- 
tion of the production of raw steel and raw aluminum — haven't built 
fabricating plants that would easily be convertible to peacetime 
goods, and that most of those other things, our airfields, for instance, 
will naturally melt. In other words, as far as industrial development 
of the country goes, it seems that the old saying "them that has, gits" 
applies to this situation. The sections that had fabricating experts 
and fabricating plants are expanding. We are losing much that we 


In Alabama we have made very little progress in converting our 
small plants. I don't know what our trouble is. It appears that 
under the Office of Production Management there was a policy of 
discouragement of small plants, and for a long time prior to Pearl 
Harbor that appeared to be the War Department's policy also. In 
this State the branch office of defense contracts distribution in Bir- 
mingham was headed by a man whose chief function appeared to be to 
shoo small plant operators away when they came in, and discourage 
them as much as possible. The War Production Board changed the 
Office of Production Management policy on that, in theory at least, 
but there has not been any accompanying change in personnel in 
Alabama. This one man in Alabama who discouraged converting 
and pooling of small plants — we haven't had any pooling in Alabama, 
as far as I know — is still there. And some of the operators from our 
city have been there, and about all they get is discouragement. Those 
small plants don't appear to have any part in this war-production 
program. Unless something is done, they will have to shut down. 
Our labor will go to other centers. 

I understand the Government has removed some of the obstacles 
that were there before Pearl Harbor in the matter of negotiating con- 
tracts and in the matter of loans for small businesses. But we need 
a salesman, a man with imagination and ability to put that program 
over. In centers where it has succeeded, it seems that the personality 
of the man responsible is the factor in successful conversion to war 
production. It may be that the horse has already left the barn in 
Alabama. 1 

The Chairman. There is no question but what you are correct 
about the importance of converting and pooling. They will have to 
take the small plants and get them into this war program. As I 
stated this morning — and I have made some little study of it — you 
have probably 160,000 manufacturing plants, large and small, in the 
United States; 97 percent of them employ 250 persons or less. One- 
third of those plants in the United States employ 20 or less. Those 
figures alone are indicative of what you say. Now there are about 
42 pools already that have been formed in the United States. I think 
California has 19 of them. 

Mr. Beech. What about the personality of the man in Los Angeles 
or San Francisco that has done such a good job? Isn't it the person- 
ality of that man that has succeeded in selling conversion and pooling 
in California? 

1 Further personnel changes are under way as this hearing goes to press. 



The Chairman, That is rather personal with me, because my son, 
Jack, is the man you are speaking of who is doing that work. Of 
course, the old man had to tell him how to do it. Of course, you can 
go out and get 10 or 15 small plants and get them organized, incorpo- 
rated, ready to do business; but I want to tell you something further: 
So far not one of those pools in California has got a contract yet. 
So that requires salesmanship also. I talked to Mr. Donald Nelson 
2 weeks ago, and he said he thought these pools were the most impor- 
tant single factor in our defense program. I think the first one was in 
Kansas City. There were 17 small plants, and the interesting thing 
is they were making shells, receiving orders from Canada, but couldn't 
get an order from their own country. Of course this is never going to 
be an all-out effort until all our small plants are brought into the 
program. This is an all-out war, and it will take all our strength and 
manpower to win it. But to get it under way and get it started takes 
time. But Mr. Nelson is absolutely sold on the idea. 

On the other hand, if these little businessmen throughout the 
United States are going to be swept away in this war program, that 
is a pretty heavy price to pay. I am glad to hear your testimony 
about that, because to my notion there isn't anything more important. 

Mr. Beech. One thing more on that — in emphasizing one man 
heading that program in this State, I don't mean to plead for our 
businessmen that they don't need to have initiative and imagination 
about the thing. We have got men with initiative to overcome any 
obstruction. A man in Birmingham who made burglar bars for 
windows produced a half million stove pokers for use in the Army. He 
employed four for making bars, and now he employs 20 to turn out 
one single item for the Army, which is a dramatic example of what 
can be done. 


Mr. Spaekman. You may be interested about this little experience 
I had. It happened to a little hosiery mill in Mr. Shelton's town 
(Decatur, Ala. ) . The manager was trying to convert. He went first to 
Birmingham and was referred to Atlanta. Atlanta said, "Yes; you 
can get contracts if you get machines." He went to get the machines 
necessary to convert and was told he could get the machines if he got 
priorities. So he came to Washington. I ran him from one office to 
another in the War Production Board in an effort to get the machines. 
And the final outcome was that he could not get the machines. Every- 
where it was the same: "We can let you do this, if you can get the 
machines necessary." He couldn't get them. I don't know what 
progress he has made since then. But I do know what a hopeless 
chase it was, and it is very, very discouraging. We have met with 
that all over the country. In some sections they are breaking the ice 
to some extent. 

Mr. Sh elton. The progress he has made is that he has let one- 
third of his people go, and he is making hosiery with the other two 
shifts. But unless he can get some relief of the type you speak of, 
he is going to have to close. 

Mr. Sparkman. And for many years, while small, it was one of the 
most helpful industries a community could have. 


Mr. Shelton. Yes. It employed 600. 

Mr. Sparkman. Does the Government give any assistance at all 
in effecting the conversion? 

Mr. Beech. In this State it has been discouraged— it is not only 
that we haven't had any assistance. If you can get around to the 
engineers in the office, people say you can get help. But most people 
are timid about it. 

Mr. Sparkman. It is the old story of taking the line of least re- 
sistance with the Government; they go to the big producers and place 
their orders, because that seems to be the easiest way out, but that 
doesn't get the goods manufactured. 

Mr. Beech. If you have a tremendous back log of contracts, you can 
get the new machines. But here's a little fellow that has to get the 
machinery first. You have paper corporations all over, with big 
name officials — maybe the son-in-law of some Senator — and they can 
get contracts with nothing except a blueprint factory. In some in- 
stances that has been done. 

Mr. Amis. Huntsville seems to be the exception, from what these 
gentlemen say, as well as from what you say. I think every plant 
here is on war stuff. 

Mr. Cox. That is the same as my town, Mobile. 

Mr. Sparkman. I think this is true in Huntsville — not a single 
plant had to convert. They are using the same machinery. 

Mr. Amis. Yes, sir; we didn't have to convert. 

Mr. Cox. That's the way it is with us. 

Mr. Sparkman. Your biggest industry is building ships? 

Mr. Cox. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Beech. He is talking about big industries. We have two chem- 
ical companies in Montgomery that manufacture hair-straighteners. 
It looks like they could be used to make some simple chemical. 

Mr. Dobbins. The Anniston soil pipe plants constitute the biggest 
soil pipe center in the world, I suppose, yet I understand that soil pipe 
is going to be a thing of the past except for Government orders. Those 
plants have no very definite future. No plans have been made for 
their conversion. 

Mr. Sparkman. What about the small plants in Mobile? Gould 
seemed to sort of challenge your statement that Mobile didn't have 
to do any conversion. 

Mr. Cox. It seems we haven't a tremendous number of small 
plants, and of these, there were some that the owners voluntarily 
closed and went to work in the shipyards, so they can draw a weekly 
pay check of $100 or $120. 

Mr. Sparkman. Let me make this suggestion — I want to hear you 
discuss your thoughts as to the present war plants that are operating 
in your respective communities throughout the State. 

Reese (Mr. Amis), I am more or less familiar with what is here, 
but will you give us some idea about the war plants here, and the 
war production that is going around in this section? 


Mr. Amis. We have three large textile plants here. The Lincoln 
Mills was working on war orders even before Pearl Harbor — 100 per- 
cent of production. The Dallas Mill is a sheeting mill. I don't 


know exactly the stuff they are making. George Elliot just told me 
they were doing war production. I do know Merrimack is doing 
war production altogether. That is my understanding from Henry 
McKelvie. Their problem is not orders, but the people with which to 
operate those plants. Of course, that is a local situation. Right next 
to us is this Government arsenal, drawing people from those plants to 
work at the arsenal at better wages than the other plants can afford to 
pay. Also a good many of their employees have been affected by 
the draft, and they are having a very difficult time to get enough 
people to operate those three large textile plants right now. As a 
matter of fact, it will probably be more severe, because the minute 
the construction out here is completed and this arsenal and Redstone 
go into operation, they will take a lot of young people at $4 or $4.50 
a day, which is more than the textile plants can pay. Their problem 
is going to be to get enough people to continue operating. 

The other plant here, the Martin Stove Plant, of course that is a 
war industry, and I think they are clicking along just the same as 
ever and paying good wages, and have therefore not been so much 
affected by the arsenal here. 

As you know, John, we have practically no other industry here. 
Oh, there might be some very small ones, but they couldn't take any 
kind of subcontracting orders. 


Our big problem here — and I have felt it all the time and talked 
to you about it — our problem, and I believe it applies elsewhere in 
Alabama, is a question of education to do something. When a boy 
gets out of school — -perhaps he doesn't go through the grades, or if 
he goes through high school (some 12 or 15 percent go to college)— 
he doesn't know how to do anything. We have some jack-leg car- 
penters, but they just picked it up. But there is no manual training 
or technical training to do any particular thing. For instance, that 
aluminum plant you mentioned— if an industry were to come in here 
that wanted to process that aluminum, I don't know of anybody here 
that would be qualified to do it. 

Mr. Sparkman. I might say that when I went through the rolling 
mill part of that aluminum plant, Mr. Hammill, who was on the 
stand this morning, told me that out of 2,500 workers, only 15 of 
them were brought in. Every one of the others was trained right there. 
He gave us the figures this morning, and, as I recall them, he was work- 
ing about 3,600 people in the 2 plants, and about 3,000 of them came 
from right around there and in the adjoining counties in Tennessee, 
Mississippi, and Alabama. 

Mr. Amis. I think the same thing is taking place in the arsenal and 

Mr. Sparkman. Yes, sir; General Ditto and Colonel Hudson 
testified to that. And I went through the electro-metallurgical plant, 
which makes ferro-silicon . It has increased its production 500 percent 
in the last year or so. They work 350, and as we went through, he 
would point out different people, such as the son of the mayor of 
the town, working a furnace. And he pointed out different ones, 
the sons of people I knew. And he said, "We brought 4 fore- 
men, the superintendent and myself, 6 men. The otlier 350 are 

60396 — 12— pt. 32 14 


from right around here." I asked Mr. Hammill on the stand if 
his labor had proved adaptable and productive, and he said it had 
measured up to every expectation. 


Mr. Beech. May I say something about that education angle? 
I believe if Congress could look back 5 years that it would do some 
things it hasn't done, and undo some things it has done. It would 
be unanimously in favor of aiding education through State grants, 
because we see now how vital the relation is between this section and 
the rest of the country. Grammar school teachers in Mr. Tolan's 
State make as much as deans of colleges in this State. We just don't 
have enough funds to provide the proper educational facilities. 

Mr. Sparkman. Gould (Mr. Beech), I think you are familiar with 
this statement. A man from one of the New England cities was on 
the stand at one of our hearings. I was asking what he thought about 
the advisability of variable grants to States to aid in education. He 
answered this way: "Mr. Congressman, if you raise mules and sell 
them to us, we pay you for bringing them up, but, as it is, you raise 
children, educate them and send them to us, and we don't pay you 
anything for giving us that productivity." 

Mr. Beech. In that connection, in one generation we have sent out 
3,000,000 people. And if they want good folks, they had better help us 
train and educate our people. 


Mr. Sparkman. Barrett (Mr. Shelton), what do you say about the 
war production in your town? 

Mr. Shelton. Our textile mills continue on 100 percent war pro- 
duction. Our small industries continue to operate, and will as far as 
I can tell. We have also gone into ship building with two companies 
building just small types of vessels. 

Mr. Sparkman. They are fuel-carrying barges primarily? 

Mr. Shelton. Yes, sir; and from that angle I am not nearly so 
bothered about the present as I am about what is to come after the 
war. I don't see the great drop in financial conditions that a good 
many folks foresee, but I, nevertheless, do regard the problem with 
seriousness. I believe, too, the Federal Government has learned a 
great deal in the past 10 years. I think the Public Works program 
has been of a vast benefit and we have gone through an experience 
and learned so much that we will not make many of the mistakes we 
have made in the past. 


Mr. Cox. I am not so worried as to post-war effects. I don't think 
the construction of ships will automatically stop the moment the 
armistice is signed. I think we will continue to build them. 

Mr. Beech. There was a shipbuilding boom in the Spanish- 
American War, the World War, and now, and each time Mobile has 
come up. This may be an exceptional war, and I wouldn't want to 
say this before the chamber of commerce in Mobile, but shipbuilding 
is a world-wide competitive operation, and in peacetime we have 
always stopped building them. 


Mr. Sparkman. Following the last world war we let our ships lie 
in various places and rot away. 

Mr. Beech. Mobile had many of them. 

Mr. Cox. I think that is one of the great troubles today. If we 
had sufficient ships, the chances are the job might be easy. And I 
think we are learning a tremendous lesson on ships. 

Mr. Beech. He may be right about it. I may be more pessimistic 
about Mobile than Montgomery. 

Mr. Cox. Then we have this tremendous air supply depot at Mobile. 
I don't think that will automatically close up at the war's end. 

Mr. Sparkman. That is a permanent fixture. As a matter of fact, 
that was designed before we got into the war. 

Mr. Cox. And I think that if the present influx of labor could be 
satisfied, they would have more tendency to stay in Mobile after 
the armistice. 

Mr. Amis. Are vou building enough houses to keep them under a 


Mr. Cox. According to what Commander Langworthy said, Mobile 
is showing an uncooperative attitude toward the Navy officers. We 
have cooperated. We have cooperated to the extent that there is 
nothing left. We can't house them. The great majority of private 
residences are renting out rooms to Navy officers and to defense 
workers, as far as that goes. But we have reached a point that the 
surplus room is gone, and there is no more left. We will have to 
construct new houses and quickly. 

Mr. Sparkman. There have been various Government housing 

Mr. Cox. Yes, sir; but the rate of construction has not been as 
rapid as the rate of migration. 


Mr. Beech. May I say something about the Mobile housing 
problem? Mr. W. O. Dobbins, director of the Alabama State Planning 
Commission, couldn't be here. I think he has submitted you some 
plans. He spoke on tent housing, which is a tent only to the extent 
that the upper parts of the walls are made of canvas. Mr. Dobbins 
and others have convinced me that the problem of housing is still in 
the hands of the 1930 experts. Those are the men who saw housing 
as a great social development. They set standards, such and such 
size for the bathroom, such and such^ized windows, and so on. They 
are still thinking in terms of $5,000 and $6,000 houses, and a perma- 
nent, ideal neighborhood. Mobile doesn't need 200 or 300 of those 
houses. What Mobile needs is 3,000 houses or 2,000 houses that can 
be put up in a hurry. Anything else would be a peacetime housing 
program, requiring a lot of material and men. And Mobile can't 
house enough workmen to build the houses it needs. Mr. Dobbins 
is for a $500 or a $1,000 house that could be built on large tracts like 
an* Army camp. What he is talking about is a whole area of houses 
that can be built in 60 days and would provide a sound roof and 
sanitary facilities for the families. 1 

1 See p. 12165. 


(The following material was later submitted by Mr. Dobbins and 
accepted for the record.) 

Hon. John H. Tolan, 

House Office Building, Washington, D. C. 

Dear Congressman: This will acknowledge receipt of your letter of May 29 
relative to material submitted by the Alabama State Planning Commission at the 
committee hearing in Huntsville, Ala. In addition to the material submitted by 
Mr. A. J. Gray, I think that it would be appropriate to include a copy of a resolu- 
tion submitted by the Alabama State Defense Council to the National Housing 
Agency in Washington. I am attaching a copy of this resolution hereto. 

I am also enclosing a copy of a speech presented to a meeting of civil engineers 
in Montgomery on May 16 on the subject of war housing. I will appreciate any 
comment you have to make on this. The steadfast refusal of the Government to 
provide temporary shelter for areas where the in-migration of workers has been 
in numbers which required the provision of from 3,000 or more homes has been 
very difficult for us to understand. It seems so obvious that where units in the 
thousands are required that the most temporary sort of housing offers the only 
solution. The antipathy of workers to the barracks type has been pronounced 
in Alabama. They evidently prefer to be overcrowded in rooms in private homes 
rather than to patronize facilities of the barracks type. The situation in such areas 
as Mobile is still acute and relief could be speedily provided by a development 
similar to that submitted in our material. 
Yours very truly, 

W. O. Dobbins, Jr. Director. 

A Resolution 

Whereas of all the elements that affect the prosecution of this war by the 
United States none are more important than shipbuilding, the production of war 
materials, and the training of the armed forces; 

Whereas the overcrowding of workers engaged in the operation of shipbuilding 
and war production plants adversely affects the efficiency and morale of workers; 

Whereas an insufficiency of housing in the vicinity of certain war production 
areas in Alabama is resulting in workers leaving such areas where important 
shipbuilding and war material production is underway; and 

Whereas a simple, practical, and workable plan, which will be self-liquidating, 
has been submitted to the National Housing Agency for the construction of 
temporary housing in Alabama areas where the housing shortage is acute; and 

Whereas the Alabama State Defense Council pledges its full cooperation to 
the National Housing Agency in any such projects which may be undertaken: 
Now, therefore, be it 

Resolved by the Alabama State Defense Council, That the National Housing 
Agency be urged to take action on the plan which has been submitted, or on another 
plan of similar nature which will provide temporary housing facilities in Alabama 
areas where the housing shortage is acute and where the national war effort is 
adversely affected thereby; and be it further 

Resolved, That a copy of this resolution be sent to the National Housing Agency 
in Washington. 


By W. O. Dobbins, Jr., Director, Alabama State Planning Commission 

(Presented to spring meeting of Alabama section of the American Society of Civil 
Engineers, Whitley Hotel, Montgomery, Ala., May 16, 1942) 

I have been asked to talk here on the subject, Housing, Works, and Facilities 
in War Activities. I wish to approach this subject thusly: 

Chiang Kai-shek has aptly said, "If we perspire more freely in times of peace 
we bleed less during times of war." I wish to begin and end this discussion with 
that valuable thought. 

Before discussing wartime housing I think that it would be appropriate to deal 
briefly with some peacetime concepts of planning as a general background for this 
subject. The fact that I desire to approach the subject thusly is entirely natural 
in view of the fact that my work for the past several years has been concerned 


with highway planning studies and more recently with State planning studies. 
It is generally accepted that the prime objective of our democratic government is 
to promote the general welfare. It follows logically then that this should be the 
objective also of all units or agencies of any level of our Government. It then 
becomes apparent that the purpose and duty of the Alabama State Planning 
Commission is to study all matters which affect the present and future develop- 
ment of Alabama. The above cannot be quarreled with by anyone, but, like so 
much of our talk, it is all on a rather abstract level. I will attempt to reduce 
these ideas to a lower level on a plane which is not so abstract. In connection 
with ideas this definition of an idea, which I recently read, is of sufficient interest, 
I think, to pass on to you — namely, that "an idea is the verbalization of a cerebral 

The purpose of planning in the business world is to secure a profit, or, in other 
words, to secure the highest net return upon the investment. There is nothing 
abstract about this process. The penalty paid by a business which does not plan 
wisely is generally the failure of the business itself. So all businessmen recognize, 
perforce, the necessity for planning. 

The purpose of planning in the field of government should be to accomplish 
the objective of obtaining the greatest good for the greatest number of people 
who will be affected by the policies or actions of the Government or of the Govern- 
ment agencies involved. It is also a fundamental concept of this country that 
Government action should be only in fields where private capital cannot be in- 
duced or in fields for which private capital admittedly would not be appropriate. 


Planning then becomes nothing more than common sense, foresight, and good 
business judgment. Common sense demands that all problems with which 
Government is concerned be approached and studied on the basis of all the facts 
involved. Any solution which ignores facts is much more apt to be an improper 
one than if all of the facts were collected and studied. No proof for such a state- 
ment is required. Foresight demands that due cognizance be given to the future 
aspects of the problems. This, of course, involves a study of trends and shifts in 
population, land use, city growth, etc. Good business judgment demands that 
each undertaking, particularly those undertakings of a public works character, 
be subjected to an economic analysis for the purpose of determining whether the 
cost is commensurate with the benefits expected. This requires a technique of 
analysis which is now commonly known as engineering economic studies. 

The penalty paid by business for improper planning is generally a failure of 
the business. The penalty paid by the Government for improper planning is 
generally shown in such ways as — 

(a) Cities with haphazard development without a proper relationship be- 

tween industrial areas, shopping areas, living areas, and recreational 
areas, with sewer systems unable to meet normal expansion, with con- 
gested traffic, with pollution of streams and other water resources. 

(b) With highways which are inadequate for modern high speed traffiic and 

with highways which have been overbuilt for all reasonable require- 
ments of the traffic load, both present and future. 

This is a challenge to all engineers because it is sad, indeed, if the engineering 
profession fails to recognize the economic and social effects of all engineering 
works on the people of this State. 

A logical approach for a State Planning Commission to take in order to accom- 
plish its objective would be to examine conditions and facilities within the State 
in order to determine their adequacy or inadequacy. For example: 

(a) How many people in Alabama have hookworm and what effect would a 

rural housing program have in correcting this condition? 

(b) How many miles of highway require relocation and rebuilding? 

(c) How many cities have snarled and congested traffic on their street 


(d) How many cities have a sewage disposal problem? 

(e) What areas are of a submarginal character from an agricultural stand- 

point and what is the possibility of inducing an industry to such an 
area in order that the people may be removed from the land and given 
a means of livelihood in the industry? 

Any one with imagination can list many more of such problems for work and 



It is thus self-evident that housing has an effect on and, in turn, is affected by 
many other activities of government. The peacetime concept of housing would 
divide the problem into two parts, namely: 

(a) Housing financed by private capital. 

(b) Public housing. 

All of such housing, of course, should be related to proper urban and rural 
planning. This will require zoning in order that the best combination of beauty 
and utility may result in each community in order that people may have a place 
for working, for living, and for playing, served by adequate transportation 
facilities and other community utilities. 

A logical approach to such a housing problem during peacetime would be to 
determine first the relevant facts for the community. This would be mainly a 
determination of the number of units adjudged to be inadequate, plus the number 
of overcrowded units. This would also require a study of population growth and 
an estimate of the additional number of units thus required for normal population 
growth. On the basis of these facts the number of units which should be built by 
private capital could be readily ascertained, taking into account future growth. 
For that necessary housing which should be provided as public housing for income 
groups not able to afford the conventional type of home provided by private 
capital the same approach should be made. Such a number of units allowing 
for normal growth for the income classes concerned would be for peacetime 
conditions a most desirable public works improvement. The fact that such 
public housing is partially self-liquidating adds .to the attractiveness of this 
sort of development. 

Any expansion of housing beyond the needs thus determined on the basis of a 
factual study would be dangerous for the community real-estate values. It is 
readily understood that a large overexpansion for temporary needs would be 
likely to cause a real-estate collapse when. the market was glutted with unoccu- 
pied units at a later date when normal conditions were again operative. 

Now, for the housing of war workers. This, in our opinion, is plainly a field 
for public housing, beginning where peacetime housing stopped. War workers, 
migrating to war production or military camp areas, are either house appropri- 
ately by public housing or they are affected by one or more of the following: 

(a) Overcrowded into existing units. 

(b) Charged excessive rents. 

(c) They move on to other areas hoping to find decent living conditions. 

The adverse effects of each of the above are too apparent to require ampli- 


I wish to remind you, also, of the thought about overdevelopment. The danger 
of the overdevelopment above indicated must be borne in mind by all levels of 
government in providing wartime housing. It is with this thought in mind and 
the urgency of housing the workers that the Alabama State Planning Commis- 
sion has suggested temporary housing of the most temporary sort for such areas 
as Mobile. "Under the impact and stress of the war effort and a wartime economy 
detached planning with long-range aspects included is generally inappropriate and 
out of place. If a community had prepared plans for the development and zoning 
of its area and had facts on which to base a financially sound housing program, it 
would still be impossible or out of order due to — 

(a) The shortage of time. 

(b) Shortage of materials. 

(c) The critical overloading of our transportation system. 

(d) The shortage of labor. 

Since December 7, 1941, we have found that every resource we have must be 
utilized in the best possible way in order to win this war. Therefore, considering 
all of the above points, it is the opinion of the Alabama State Planning Commis- 
sion that temporary housing of the most temporary sort is the only answer for 
such areas as Mobile where the in-migration of workers has been in the neighbor- 
hood of 75,000. It is necessary that these workers flock to Mobile in order that 
ships may be built and launched. I will not insult your intelligence by pointing 
out to you the importance of shipbuilding in this war offensive on which we are 
beginning. It then becomes apparent that unless these men can be housed that 


shipbuilding will suffer. For the want of a ship carrying necessary supplies and 
war equipment thousands of American boys may be needlessly killed. Nothing 
abstract about that. 

Such houses as have been proposed and which are illustrated with a housing 
layout by a sheet attached to this paper, 1 copies of which will be available to 
you, can be provided at very rapid rates by "any experienced building contractor. 

The necessity for locating the area adjacent to the industry, if possible, is obvi- 
ous in view of the tire situation. The workers should be able to walk to work. 

In order to salvage as much as possible, and considering the possibility that 
some communities which have been tremendously expanded may lose only a part 
of the workers and war industries in the post-war period, we have suggested a 
housing area which is an entity in itself. If such a condition should prevail, 
then the temporary units proposed could easily be removed and a more permanent 
type supplied. This will be possible because in the layout of the area thought 
has been given to the proper relationship of the land area occupied by houses and 
open space for air, parks, streets, and individual ground plots. 

We are aware of the difficulties, particularly those difficulties which may be 
encountered in the provision of community facilities. If such an area could be 
located where the adjacent city is able to supply water, the problem will be greatly 
simplified. The water distribution system for such an area can be rapidly pro- 
vided. Of course, if a water supply has to be devloped from scratch and storage 
reservoirs constructed, the problem will be greatly complicated. We are also 
aware of the difficulty in many cases of the sewage disposal problem. However, 
we are confident that these problems are not insurmountable. 


Assuming that a unit of the type illustrated could be built and furnished for 
$400, which it is believed is a liberal estimate, and allowing $350 per unit for the 
provision of utilities, such as streets, water distrubtion system, sewerage facilities, 
and a power distribution system; and further assuming that 2,000 such units would 
be required, we then have 2,000 times $350, or $700,000 for the provision of the 
above-mentioned utilities. 

Of course, full-fledged engineering studies and investigations would be required 
in order to properly estimate the cost of such facilities. However, proceeding 
with these assumptions, we would have 2,000 of such units built and furnished 
and provided with the necessary community facilities at a cost of $750 each. 
Assuming that these units have a 3-year life and that a one-third salvage value 
of the total cost will be possible and that the capital expended for the development 
should be recovered in 3 years at a 2-percent interest rate, the rent which will be 
required to thus make the project entirely self -liquidating will be only $14.44 per 
month. This will not include, of course, the cost of water and lights, but a rea- 
sonable estimate of the total rental cost, including these items, should not exceed 
$20 for a married man without children. Such rents are economic rents, even 
for the lower-income classes, which will be and are being attracted into the Mobile 

In considering the advantages of such a plan all of the factors and dangers 
inherent in a housing program above pointed out should be balanced against this 
plan and against any other suggested method of solving the acute housing short- 
age in war production areas. 


To what extent should private housing be modified by war conditions? I wish 
to bring to your attention one point in connection with this. Many building 
codes are unnecessarily rigid in their requirements or require far more of critical 
materials than is actually necessary. Many building codes still specify, for ex- 
ample, that the permissible outside fiber stress for steel shall not exceed 18,000 
pounds. It is my understanding that Canada is now permitting 25,000 pounds. 
In connection with this I have in our office a recommended building code which 
makes many changes necessary and desirable in the light of the present shortage 
of many materials. We do not have copies available for distribution, but we 
will be glad to lend this copy to any one interested in the matter. As each of 
you returns to his home community it may be deisable and patriotic to discuss 
the Building Code being used with the proper authorities with the idea of making 
appropriate wartime modification. 



So much for wartime housing, and, as I threatened in my opening paragraph, 
I now make good on this threat by leaving this thought with you. "If we per- 
spire more freely in times of peace, we bleed less in times of war." 

I think if the Mobile workmen were given the choice, they would 
rather have the $500 house than wait for the $5,000 house. Mr. 
Dobbins' house would amortize over a period of 3 years, renting for 
$10 to $30 a month. 

The Chairman: The committee has received a plan for Mr. Dob- 
bins' tent house, together with a suggested layout for a defense hous- 
ing project. This was prepared by the Alabama State Planning 
Commission at Montgomery, Ala., and is submitted by W. O. Dobbins, 
director. It will be entered in the record at this point. 

(The following material was submitted by Mr. Dobbins subsequent 
to the hearing.) 

£l 'Q^™ 

§ '* 






The Chairman. At San Diego they have such a housing project 
as Mr. Dobbins describes. They put up 3,000 units, and they put 
on a demonstration for the committee there. They put up the sides 
of the building, the windows and roof and everything except the floor 
in 12 minutes. 

Mr. Amis. What do they cost? 

The Chairman. I don't know that. I do know they were to be 
rented for $20 a month. 


Mr. Amis. Let me interrupt a minute. This arsenal was nn- 
nouncod the 2d of July. Today is the 8th day of May. We haven't 
got a house yet. And if this war ends this summer, I think that 
they might complete a house by the time it ends. What good is 
that going to be? We went through the winter here with 12,000 or 
15,000 people employed at the arsenal, with people "stacked up" in 
places. We had a Civilian Conservation Corps camp on the moun- 
tain that would house 250 people or 275 people, but it was under 
another Government department. There was a world of people who 
would have been delighted to occupy those quarters dining the 
winter. As far as that goes, that's true right now. 

There is the young lady who works for me. Her husband is an 
engineer. He has been working at the arsenal. He is being sent to 
Louisiana and he needs the car. She has two children. She is be- 
yond the bus line out here. What is Mrs. McCullough going to do 
with the two kids in this town? She can't rent rooms or an apart- 
ment to save her neck. She is threatened with having to go away 
from here on that very account. Yet we advertise thai we have the 
most delightful summer resort in the South on the mountain. 

The Chairman. The trouble with the housing is there were so 
many different agencies that had jurisdiction over different projects. 
We should decentralize our housing agencies. Then it would be the 
people in Mobile who determine what their need is. I would say 25 
percent of my time every day is taken up with constituents coming 
all the way from California for help on their local problems; and, as 
Congressman Sparkman says, we have to go down to the agencies 
and try to get this information for them and certainly we don't always 
come back successful. We have got to have some kind of clearing 

Mr. Beech. I don't know why all these things should clear through 
Washington. I think the man on the ground should know more 
about it. 

The Chairman. That is just what I was saying. You take the 
Work Projects Administration — and we are just thinking about what 
can be done — all those projects came to Washington from the different 
places for clearance. But who knows better as to what is the most 
necessary and best thing for a Work Projects Administration project 
than the local people? You have got your 3,000 counties in the 
United States, and say your county is entitled to $15,000,000. 1 don't 
know why they can't put that in a Federal Reserve bank and say to 
your supervisor of the county commission, "Now spend that for the 
greatest relief of manpower on the most useful and necessary projects. 
We put that responsibility on you." Now when these Federal housing 
projects come in, I think it should be done in the regional office. 

Mr. Sparkman. When you say there hasn't been a house built, you 
mean by the Government? There are a number of Federal Housing 
Administration houses? 

Mr. Amis. Yes, sir; and we have people anxious to build but unable 
to because they can't get priorities. 

Mr. Shelton. That is the way it is in Decatur; we need 300 houses, 
but we haven't been able to get priorities as yet to go ahead. 

Mr. Dobbins. Barrett [Mr. Sheltan], aside from the housing prob- 
blem of these people who have come in recently, we are getting tough 
problems from the old residents. For instance, in Anniston there has 


been quite a tendency in the last 10 years for our industrial workers 
to build houses out about 5 or 10 miles. Now, with a rubber shortage 
and an automobile shortage, these people are worried and so is in- 
dustrial management as to how to get them in to work. Quite a few 
live on little-traveled roads and are widely separated. 


Mr. Sparkman. I wonder if I might ask you to discuss this angle. 
There has been some discussion already. What do you think about 
the effect on our section as a result of this program permanently? Of 
course, you said, Gould, you are afraid unless we get fabrication 
plants, it will not be permanent. Mr. Ferris painted a rather gloomy 
picture, I think, somewhat along the same line. He thinks we are 
letting ourselves in for a terrific headache when it is all over, because 
the expansion we have had has been more or less of a temporary nature, 
and that we must get fabricating plants in here. My idea has been 
this — I may be overoptimistic — but in the past, many times in 
trying to influence industrialists to come down in this part of the 
country, we have met with this opposition, that they couldn't come 
because of the fact that our labor wasn't trained, wasn't skilled. But 
during this program that situation has been, I believed, belittled, 
because they have found out that our people were readily adaptable. 
I wonder what your present thinking is as to that? 

Mr. Beech. I would like to think that. 

Mr. Amis. I think Detroit is going to have a headache, because they 
have doubled their space up there. I think Mr. Ford will have a 

Mr. Beech. I think they are going to make automobiles. 

Mr. Amis. I do, too, but not twice as many. He has the Rouge 
River Plant and Willow Run, too, which is twice as big. What is he 
going to do? 

Mr. Arnold. He will build airplanes, perhaps, in part of his plants. 

Mr. Amis. The plants are especially adapted to a certain type, 
which is bombers. I think the United, American, and other big 
concerns will take care of the commercial planes. 

Mr. Beech. I certainly don't think it likely that they will move 
down here. 

Mr. Sparkman. You are talking about the Ford plant. Let's 
think of another kind of plant. Let's take the cooking utensils type of 
plant. There has been no expansion in that for a long time. Where 
are they going to expand after the war is over? 

Mr. Beech. The people that own the patents are going to build 
them where they have always built them. I don't think we ought to 
depend on their coming to us. And I don't think our universities 
should be proud that representatives of big companies come and 
gather the cream of their graduating classes each year. We need the 
young man with the determination to be president of his company. 
But those boys up there are not going to look after us. They never 
have. Even the South Americans think now that the United States 
is going to look after them. I hope they treat the South Americans 
better than they have treated the Southeast. 

Mr. Sparkman. Suppose you had local capital that is willing to 
invest; could that bottleneck be broken? 


Mr. Beech. Yes, with enough imagination. But we are colonial 
minded. We believe that these boys that have always had bigness 
are the smartest and that we had better invest our dollars with them, 
rather than with ourselves. 

Mr. Dobbins. I hope you heard what Barrett said about plants in 
his home. 

Mr. Shelton. You must remember Gould comes from Mont- 
gomery, where they don't know what industry is. They have politics 
and Goat Hill. 1 That is what is bothering Gould. 

development or the decatur area 

I think that every county in Alabama has a job it can do on its 
own, using its own capital. I think we can build on our own resources 
the type of industry that is going to stay here whether we have war 
or peace. In our particular area of Alabama we are greatly blessed 
through the coming of the Tennessee Valley Authority. That agency 
of the Government has come in, not to attract industry to this valley, 
but to develop those things which we already had, which in turn has 
attracted industry to this valley and to Alabama and to Tennessee. 
And navigation on the Tennessee River was entirely responsible for 
the shipbuilding industry in Decatur. And we have gone along in 
our section trying to develop the dairy industry in small units. We 
think that the future of this valley is bright, for we are becoming 
known for the raw materials and natural advantages that we have. 
That may sound like chamber of commerce talk, but those are the 

Mr. Sparkman. You are president of the chamber of commerce? 

Mr. Shelton. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Sparkman. I want to say, Barrett, I agree with what you say. 
I have often pointed to Decatur as having such a healthful develop- 

I have also pointed to Scottsboro, Stevenson, and Bridgeport. 
Jackson County has a great many small, locally owned industries, and 
I have felt it has been in a very healthful condition. By the way, 
you mentioned the development of the dairy industry. You have a 
cheese plant and packing house that have been developed locally? 

Mr. Shelton. Yes, sir. 

soil-pipe plants 

Mr. Dobbins. That is a very attractive picture you have painted 
for Decatur. Unfortunately, down in the middle eastern part of the 
State we don't have quite such a good one. We do have many locally 
owned industries in Anniston, but when we look at Childersburg and 
some of the war industries around us, the people get to wondering 
what is going to happen. Take our soil-pipe plants that just run 
good every 10 years. They have had a very prosperous year recently 
in providing pipe for these Army camps. Now they are perhaps going 
into a period of depression. And after the war is over we don't 
know what will become of them, unless they are converted to some- 
thing. I don't know whether they can be converted to anything else. 
After the war is over, maybe we will need a lot of soil pipe, I don't 

1 The site of the State capitol. 


know. But the people of my area are much concerned about the 
future of those pipe plants. 


Mr. Sparkman. What do you think of the trend of agriculture in 
this State? Are you pleased or encouraged by the progress that has 
been made in the development of agriculture? 

Mr. Shelton. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Amis. Yes, sir; and that is so without anybody's chamber of 
commerce talk. There has been a tremendous revolution in agricul- 
ture in this country in the last 10 years. But I have noticed this — 
and it is being accentuated by this war — the shortage of labor for 
farm work. I look out of my office window and every day or so I 
see a new tractor going out or some other machine to take the place 
of somebody on the farm. Of course, the farming done in this sec- 
tion — and I extend that to take in Morgan and Limestone and Jackson 
counties — is tremendously improved, and itis being done with machin- 
ery. These people have drifte4 away from the farms to go into these 
high-price war plants. What is going to become of them after the 
war is over? I don't know. 

Mr. Shelton. They can't be much worse off than they have 
always been. 

Mr. Beech. We have quite a bit of pressure on land in Alabama. 
We have 6 tillable acres for every farm person. Iowa has 25. We 
have too many people depending on farming for a living for the 
amount of land we have. If they can go into industry, permanently, 
it will help agriculture. Meanwhile, as I see it, the Farm Security 
Administration is one of the biggest hopes. And, after all, food 
production isn't a reform program, and if these small farmers get 
help in organizing for new crops, they will produce stuff for the war. 

Mr. Cox. In that case, I guess the machine age is the best thing 
for agriculture. 

Mr. Dobbins. Another effect of the labor shortage on the farm is the 
retirement of some of this land that should have been retired a long 
time ago. And some of the land will be turned into woodland which 
I hope never comes back into cultivation. 


Mr. Cox. Has the arsenal created serious housing problems in 

Mr. Amis. Certainly it has. 

Mr. Cox. What are you doing about it? 

Mr. Amis. They are building one unit of 300 close to the arsenal, 
and I should say 200 houses have been built south of town, not as 
strictly a Government housing project, but with Federal Housing 
Authority loans, title 6. 

Mr. Cox. Is that sufficient? 

Mr. Amis. No. 

Mr. Sparkman. There is under way now — in fact bids will be 
opened within the next few days — for 300 units near Redstone, at a 
little place called Farley. There will probably be one other project 


set up. Those are all Government housing projects under the Lanham 

Do any of you have any questions to ask one another, or any 
suggestions to make? 

Mr. Beech. One little matter about education in Alabama — our 
colleges and universities have entered into the war training program 
in a wonderful way. All of them have adapted themselves to it just 
as far as possible. I do think we need some coordination in training 
activities for war needs in Alabama. And it seems to me, too, that 
the proper agency might find some facilities in this State that could 
be adapted to war-training needs in our colleges that are not now 
being used. You know that the war has knocked some of our educa- 
tional institutions very heavily. I think a survey of facilities in Ala- 
bama might show that there are some facilities here that could be 
very readily adapted to technical training that are not being used. 


Mr. Sparkman. By the way, I think of another subject on which 
I would like to hear you express yourself. You are helping to promote 
the sale of war bonds. We had some testimony yesterday about vol- 
untary deductions in pay rolls here. And I think a very fine record 
is being made by Reese's assistant, Jack Langhorne. Of course, that 
is voluntary. But there is a lot of discussion about an enforced sav- 
ings plan to help these people cushion the shock when this war is over. 
Such a savings plan would have the immediate effect of helping pre- 
vent inflation. But I think its more permanent effect would be cush- 
ioning the shock when it is over. 

Mr. Cox. I think it would be the best thing that ever happened to 

Mr. Sparkman. Enforced pay-roll deductions? 

Mr. Cox. Yes, sir; any compulsory plan that would make the 
defense workers save. I think the majority of them are spending as 
much as they make. 

Mr. Arnold. I think those workmen in Mobile claim they have to 
pay it all out for living expenses. In fact, one of the citizens from my 
district in Illinois is down there, and said that Al Capone was a piker 
compared to some of the people the defense workers have to deal with. 


Mr. Beech. Every county and city in Alabama is being organized 
to promote voluntary purchase of these bonds, and we believe when 
our organization is finished the people will voluntarily save 10 percent. 
That is the goal of the Treasury Department, to get every pay roll to 
set aside 10 percent for war bonds. We believe the people in Alabama 
will respond. 

Mr. Cox. The majority will. But take, for instance, a man who 
was bumming cigarettes a year ago and is now making $100 to $200 
a week. Now he is spending under the theory, "if I spend it all to- 
night, I will get my $150 next Friday, so what." So he goes out and 

Mr. Amis. For what? 


Mr. Cox. Down there they have got almost everything you can 
spend money on. 

Mr. Amis. But you can't buy automobiles. You can't buy silk 
shirts. We are running out of stuff to spend it for. 

Mr. Cox. Mr. Chairman, when Mr. Burke was in Mobile we had a 
meeting of a lot of civic leaders, including the mayor. And they wrote 
briefs, the superintendent of education and the mayor, and I would 
like to introduce those into the record. I also have some pictures we 
took in Mobile while Mr. Burke was there. 

The Chairman. We will have them marked as exhibits. 

Mr. Arnold. I think Mr. Amis has the right idea about the farming 
situation after the war. When the depression struck I was a member 
of the Illinois House of Representatives. In the city of Chicago much 
of our manpower came from the agricultural section of Illinois into the 
industrial area, and they stayed there. Then the State of Illinois 
mortgaged its gasoline tax for $30,000,000 to keep these people alive. 
In the early days they didn't do much for them. I then came to the 
conclusion that small farms with the land improved, such as is being 
done in this farm program, small farms where people could make a 
living and not produce a great amount of surplus crops, but could 
exist and live, was the solution of the problem. And I believe that 
that will be necessary after this war, and that is one reason I am so 
strong for the Farm Security Administration or any other organization 
that can set up a man on a small farm and supervise his efforts, and 
at least prevent the necessity for such a large W. P. A., or other public 
effort, as we have had during this past 10 or 12 years. 


Mr. Sparkman. Here is Mr. Zuber. We are glad to have you. I 
wish you had been here for our discussion. But if you have a statement 
to make, go ahead. 

Mr. Zuber. I came up here to give whatever information or opinions 
that I might have that would be of interest to you. When Mr. 
Burke asked me to come today, I told him I couldn't make it because 
I had an engagement at Howard College this morning. They had 
me down for a speech. Previously Mr. Abbott had invited me for 
February, and I accepted. Then the hearings were postponed. 
And meanwhile this Howard College engagement came up, ami when 
Mr. Burke came through Birmingham to talk to me one day, I told 
him I was sorry, but that I had accepted another engagement. And 
he asked what time this engagement was, and I said, "It will be 
over by noon." And he said, "Why can't you come up here? You 
can get here before the testimony is finished. If you get there by 
4 or 4:15 you ought to be able to get on the record." I wish I could 
have been here sooner. 

Mr. Sparkman. We certainly are glad to have you here. 

Mr. Zuber. I intended to file a statement in advance. I have 
had a great many things on my hands, and I couldn't get to it. But 
I had incorporated some ideas I had on this subject in an editorial 
that appears in the Birmingham News, and if the committee would 
be interested in part of that as a part of my statement, I will be 


delighted to read it into the record. I won't read the entire editorial. 
It is about the hearings here. 


One of the principal purposes of the Tolan committee is to consider ways of 
dealing with the problem of migration and of stranded workers which the war will 
leave in its wake, in many places throughout the United States, when the fighting 
is over and the necessity for production of war materials no longer exists. For 
this reason, the work of the Tolan committee is strongly linked with the problem 
of post-war planning. This committee can be of great assistance in meeting 
the post-war unemployment situation, and in solving such problems as what to 
do with war industrial plants which will no longer be needed when peace comes. 

The immediate problem of defense migration is largely one of congestion in 
centers of war production. The situation presents for the immediate future 
problems of health, social welfare, housing, and transportation. Various agencies, 
Federal, State, and local, are attempting to cope with these immediate problems. 

The Tolan committee can be very helpful, of course, in studying these immedi- 
ate problems. Its greatest usefulness, however, lies in its study of the long-range 
problem of the effects of migration in the post-war situation. 


The first thing to be said about migration, and the thing to bear most firmly in 
mind, is that at bottom it grows out of the problem of making a living. That 
has always been the case throughout history. In ancient times the nomadic 
tribes which moved from place to place — and which in some parts of the world still 
do so — moved not so much because they enjoyed traveling as because they needed 
to find new pastures for their cattle and sheep and the opportunity to wrest a liveli- 
hood from the soil. Today, in war or in peace, here in civilized America, workers 
will migrate in vast numbers when the problem of making a living presses down 
upon them with more than usual severity. It was this problem which accounted 
for the "Okies." It is this problem, only in different form, which accounts for 
migratory war workers today. 

This means that at bottom the problem is economic. The study of it, there- 
fore, must be concerned principally with the economic factors. These studies 
must be directed toward determining, among other things, how much economic 
activity can be carried on in a certain area, how much population that area can 
comfortably support, what kinds of products it is best suited to produce and what 
products the people of the area require most. 

There are many factors in the situation, and many keys to the problems arising 
from it, but one of the principal keys surely lies in the relationship between agri- 
culture and industry. That is where much thought and planning must go if we 
are to maintain anything like a stable economic balance and prevent increasing 


I am glad that the gentleman from Illinois spoke of the farming 
angle. I enjoyed hearing his views on it a while ago. 

I think that the basis of the migratory workers' problem is agricul- 
tural. I believe that migration in this country in recent years, before 
the war production program started, was due almost altogether to the 
agricultural depression. I may be wrong about that. It may not 
have been due so much to that problem as I imagine, but I believe it is 
safe to say that the great majority of the migratory workers were set 
into the migratory movement because of the pressure of the forces 
which upset our American agricultural system. The increase in 
mechanization of agriculture had a great deal to do with it. The 
increased productivity of the land because of mechanization and be- 
cause of improvement in agricultural science added greatly to that. 
The growing problems of farm tenancy, the increased rate of farm 
tenancy up until the last year or so also contributed to it. Here in 


the South we have a vast migratory movement from farm to farm. 
Every year or so farm tenants pick up arid leave. 

I am sure that most of you are thoroughly familiar with the facts 
about that situation, and the committee, of course, knows a great 
deal more than I could begin to say about the agricultural migration 
in the West, the famous "Okies," and the Florida migrants and things 
that the committee has been looking into a long time. I don't believe 
there would be any information I could give the committee concerning 
things of that kind, because its investigators have been working on 
facts of that kind a good while. I am sure the committee has heard 
a great deal of testimony on those points. 


The point I want to make is this, that after this war is over we 
are going to have an agricultural plant, not so much overexpanded 
as after the First World War, but still overexpanded to some extent. 
I think we have done very well in controlling and planning agricul- 
tural production, but the necessity for helping to feed and clothe our 
allies has brought us a large farm market for the time being, and 
probably for a year or two after the war we will continue to have a 
great market abroad for farm products. That means some expansion 
in our agricultural plant. But the point I want to make about that 
expansion is this— and I don't think in Washington and elsewhere it 
has received sufficient attention — that our expansion is in food pro- 
duction, as distinguished from fiber production. 


Farmers produce two things — food and fiber. Except for sea food, 
farming is our only source of food of any importance. I think it is a 
mistake in our agricultural policy to regard fiber as we have been doing, 
and this applies particularly to the South, to regard fiber as something 
that has to be subsidized more or less indefinitely. It seems to me, 
from what I can gather, that the tendency is to regard fiber as a sort 
of necessary evil that has got to have its subsidy. My thought about 
it is that there is a much larger potential market for fiber, if you will 
only bring about this economic balance I mentioned between agricul- 
ture and industry, than there is potential market for increased food 
production. After all, there is a limit on your market for food; there 
is only so much food-consuming capacity — a man can eat only so much. 
Too many millions haven't had enough food, but, assuming everyone 
in this country had all he needed, we wouldn't be able to use a great 
deal more food than we are now producing. 


When the war is over and foreign countries get back into the pro- 
duction of food, our market for food production is going to drop. > We 
are called on to help feed England and other countries, and w ; ll as 
long as the war lasts and for awhile after it is over. But the time will 
come when they will turn to their own resources for food. In the 
First World War they learned you couldn't be too dependent on out- 
side sources for food supplies. And, as a consequence, in some coun- 
tries, notably France and Switzerland, they subsidized the production 


of wheat, because they had been caught in the First World War with 
very little capacity for the production of wheat and grain. They organ- 
ized systems whereby they could subsidize greater production of grains, 
and similar plans were tried with varying success in other countries. 
The point is that they came up to the Second World War with much 
greater capacity for maintaining their own grain supply than when 
they entered the First World War. Of course, that system has been 
pretty well shot by the war in Europe. But after this war is over, they 
will return, I think, to their former plan and become more nearly self- 

Even in the twenties and thirties our exports of wheat were in most 
years negligible. We did export some in the early twenties, but I 
believe from the middle twenties on until 1939 our exports of wheat 
were practically negligible. If I am wrong on this, I believe one of 
you can correct me. 


After this war we are going to have our land adapted to food produc- 
tion on a greater scale, I think, than will be necessary. I am in favor 
of that, you understand, as a war measure, but I believe we had better 
plan carefully and thoughtfully ahead for turning that capacity and 
that adaptation to food production to readaptation and to the pro- 
duction of other things, particularly here in the South. 

I believe in the South your migratory worker problem is perhaps a 
more serious problem than in some other sections. And, I believe, if 
we plan far enough in advance to turn back our excess food-producing 
capacity into fiber-producing capacity, we will be taking a sort of 
stitch in time. 

There is, or has been, in this country an underconsumption of food. 
They say one-third of our country is underfed. 


Air. Sparkman. I wonder if I might interrupt. You are talking 
about food production by the country as a whole. I would be glad 
if you would localize it a little bit. In 1935, I believe it was, statistics 
showed that Alabama bought approximately $60,000,000 worth of 
food products that it could have raised, that is, hogs, dairy products, 
eggs, poultry, pork products, lard — I don't think it even included 
wheat. As a matter of fact, Alabama isn't a wheat-growing State. 
There are two counties in the State that get wheat-growing quotas, 
Limestone and Lauderdale. But the statistics showed we bought, 
from other States, $60,000,000 worth of things we could raise. Our 
cotton crop that same year, as I recall, was about $56,000,000. You 
add the cotton seed to it, I think that was about $16,000,000, which 
gives you a total of $72,000,000. Our fertilizer for that same year 
was approximately $12,000,000, and if you add that to the cost of 
producing that $72,000,000, one will offset the other. 

As to the State of Alabama, do you not think it would be profitable 
to convert cotton acreage, or fiber acreage, as you express it, into 
acreage for the production of those food articles which we consume 
within the State? 

60396 — 42— pt. 32 15 


Mr. Zuber. I certainly do. I was speaking in national and world 
terms. On the basis of the figures you mention, we would be just 
about breaking even. I don't think we have been breaking even. 


Mr. Sparkman. Probably not. I would like your comment on this, 
A month or so ago I noted a report from Extension Service showed 
our cotton crop was $76,000,000 last year. Our next biggest crop 
was livestock and dairy crop, and it was $38,000,000, which I thought 
was a very fine showing for the State of Alabama. I noticed a short 
time ago that in Montgomery County, your county, Gould, cotton 
had taken a third place, the first being dairy, then livestock, and then 
cotton. I think that is a hopeful sign in agriculture in Alabama. 

Mr. Zuber. I call that splendid. We have to make many changes, 
of course. 


But, as I was explaining to you, I was thinking in national terms,, 
and I wasn't thinking of it so much from the production as from the 
consumption end of it. Our potential capacity to consume cotton 
and other fibers is very great. I have seen figures occasionally in 
different publications on the underconsumption of fiber and they are 
really more startling than those on the underconsumption of food. 

Of course, after all, you can't go beyond a certain point in the 
underconsumption of food, because if you do you will starve. But 
you can go almost to the vanishing point in the underconsumption 
of fiber. There are many people who have almost reached that 

Mr. Beech. What he is saying is that there is a greater possibility 
of expansion in a man's closet for suits and clothes than there is in his 
stomach for food. 

Mr. Sparkman. I was looking at it from the other way — that our 
climate was so kind it would permit it. 

Mr. Zuber. I am still speaking in national terms. What we need 
to do is make it possible for the farmer, among others, to buy some 
of his own fiber, as well as to raise and buy his own food. We need 
to make it possible for farmers to buy cotton mattresses, for example, 
and many other things they need — clothing, curtains, rugs — a thou- 
sand and one articles made of fiber. 

There is only one thing you can do with food, and that is eat it. 
But there are hundreds and hundreds of things you can do with fiber. 
There is a very great untouched capacity for consumption of fiber. 
And the reason it is under-consumed is the lack of sufficient income on 
the part of so large a proportion of our people that they neglect buying, 
not merely clothing, but other fiber needs in order to buy the shelter 
and food they require to sustain life. 


Now the reason I think that ties in with the migratory worker 
problem is that the worst part of our inadequacy of income is among 
the farming population. On the whole, they receive a smaller share 
of the national income than other comparable groups. I believe the 
farm population is roughly 25 percent of the total national population. 


The last figures I remember seeing on it were for 1938 or 1939, and 
their portion of the national income was 6.9 percent. Twenty-five 
percent of the population got less than 7 percent of the national 
income. If we will plan our agriculture so that we can produce what 
we need and dispose of what we don't need at prices reasonably- 
profitable to the farmer, I think that the farmer can help a great deal 
to make up for the deficiency of consumption, both of food and fiber 
products. It has been said a great many times by students of rural 
sociology, and by economists, and by ordinary farmers, and by 
ordinary businessmen, that the greatest untapped market in the world 
was our own farm market. I guess I have read that statement 100 
times, and it happens to be true. I have seen perfectly astronomical 
figures concerning how much paint and lumber could be used to fill 
the existing needs on the farms of the country if only the farmers had 
the money to buy it, and how much machinery, and how much 

They always counter statements of that kind with such statements 
as this: the farmers live on the land and enjoy certain things that are 
not counted as income, and that farming after all is a way of life. It 
is much more than a way of life. As it stands now, it is a pretty poor 
way of life for most farmers. 


I think if you will make farming reasonably profitable you will 
provide this great expansion in the market for goods, and, in addition 
to that, you will make it possible for the farm family to stay together 
and not feed farm youths into this stream of migration. That is 
where it ties in very importantly with the problem that this committee 
is concerned with, not the immediate problem of defense migration as 
much as the long-range problem of the migration of workers which 
comes principally from the agricultural population. 

Now I wish that I had the figures on the proportion of migratory 
workers that are from our farming population. But certainly in the 
South and West — and I believe they are your main sources of migra- 
tory workers — certainly they are mostly from the rural population, 
and certainly if you could improve the lot of the farm dwellers mate- 
rially you could keep thousands of these country boys and girls out 
of the current of migration. 

I believe you can do something else. I believe you can solve or 
help to solve in that way a problem that has been recently put by 
Dr. John D. Black, of Harvard University, in this phrase, "piling 
up at the foot of the agricultural ladder." Dr. Black says that our 
economic problem on the farm is largely there, that up the rungs of 
the agricultural ladder the situation is not so bad. But there has 
been some tremendous piling up at the foot of the agricultural ladder, 
and I believe it is from that that most of your migratory workers 
come. If you can make farm life more attractive, if you can give 
the farm family a standard of living high enough to keep their young- 
sters at home, and to keep this piling up at the foot of the agricultural 
ladder from continuing as it has, you won't have workers migrating 
from place to place. 



I think you have to give farm workers enough income — I don't 
mean the day laborers, I mean the farm families — to enable them to 
have a reasonable standard of living, to send their children to school, 
and, if they want to go and are qualified, to send them to college, with- 
out requiring all of the youngsters in the family to go to work in the 
fields as soon as they can. That is the rule around here, and through- 
out most of the country. They seem to expect the farm family, every 
member of it, to work from sun-up to sun-down. There is no such 
thing as a 5-day week on the farm, or a 40-hour week. And I think 
we can use a great deal of this surplus farm labor if only we adopt a 
kind of "spread the work" movement in agriculture. I don't think 
we should expect the farmer to work his little sons and daughters in the 
fields when they are really too young to work. I think we need a 
little more of certain kinds of leisure on the farm, although we cer- 
tainly should cut down on some kinds of farm leisure — the shiftlessness 
and the failure on the part of the farmers to spend the noncrop 
months in building and repairing their farm plant. 

I believe if you can devise a system — and I think we are on the road 
to doing it now — whereby the farmers can receive incomes which will 
put them on something like parity with the rest of the population that 
we will be going in the direction of which I am speaking. But we are 
going to have to do that by continuing and probably intensifying our 
national control over agricultural production. 


I think that the greatest single agricultural gain made in this country 
in many years was the discovery of the device of controlling or limiting 
production. Controlling production can work two ways — to expand 
or limit. And, of course, right now we are not thinking so much of 
limiting production. But I believe that crop control is here to stay 
and here to do a good job. There is no serious problem of overproduc- 
tion in industry or business. You don't find manufacturers of shoes 
making 6,000,000 shoes when the market only calls for 3,000,000. But 
somehow people have always expected cotton farmers to grow 17,000,- 
000 or 18,000,000 bales of cotton whether they could market it or not. 
If you keep farm production, at least of the basic crops, from going into 
ruinous surpluses, you will be able to improve the prices of those com- 
modities in the end without subsidizing crop reductions with Govern- 
ment funds. I believe by crop control, plus the parity principle, which 
Senator Bankhead and others have gotten recognized, you can produce 
a better income for the farm population. Producing for needs and 
giving farmers a parity income for what they produce will in the long 
run tend to keep the farm family together, to keep them from drifting 
off, and to make them a more stable element in our population. You 
will find, also, it will enable farm families to consume more of the 
Nation's goods, to provide this market that has not been tapped, and 
to provide an increasing utilization of our industrial plants. 

I believe that intelligent agricultural planning needs to be fitted into 
your general planning for all production in such a way as to contrive 
a balance between agriculture and industry. 



As for the local problem you mentioned awhile ago — when you 
come to States like Alabama, it is obvious we need to do a great deal 
of planning in directions contrary to the direction you have to take 
in other places. We need to go in for more food, more livestock, more 
dairy production, more production of vegetables. In States where 
local needs call for special treatment, I think your Farm Security 
Administration, your Agricultural Adjustment Administration, your 
Farm Extension Service, and other Federal agencies, as well as State 
agencies, can do a great deal toward promoting and directing the kind 
of development that is needed. 

I believe that about covers my point of view on that particular 
phase of the relationship between agriculture and industry. My 
point is that a great deal depends, in the solution of this problem of 
migration, on arriving at a balance between agriculture and industry. 

Mr. Sparkman. I think you have given a very helpful discussion 
of it, and kept very close to the topic. I only wish you had been here 
for the panel. 


Mr. Arnold. You don't have any housing problems in Birmingham, 
do you? 

Mr. Zuber. We have at Birmingham an excellent housing author- 
ity. I believe it is one of the best in the country from what I have 
heard of others elsewhere. We have at present four rather large 
housing projects completed, two white and two Negro. We have a 
defense housing project that is completed and in use. And I noticed 
the other day they had authorized a new Negro housing project that 
is needed. Our housing projects in Birmingham have done a great 
deal of good. Outside of slum-clearance projects, I believe we have, 
right now, a fair amount of houses. I don't believe there is a very 
serious housing shortage in Birmingham. I may be mistaken, but 
that is my opinion. 

Mr. Arnold. You have a pretty healthy situation; people are not 
packed in. 

Mr. Zuber. In that respect I think it is a fairly good situation, 
except, of course, there is always the bad situation you will find among 
the Negro population that exists in most southern cities. That has 
been improved, but it is something you can't take care of overnight, 
and I hope we can make a great deal more progress. 


Mr. Shelton. What is the possibility of labor from the Work 
Projects Administration going on the farms? What's the law? 

Mr. Beech. They have less than 13,000 Work Projects Administra- 
tion certified people in this State who have any farming background at 
all, and whenever any farmer asks for one of those men and pays the 
prevailing wage he can get him. 

Mr. Amis. How many are on Work Projects Administration in 

Mr. Shelton. Seven hundred, I think it is now. 

Mr. Beech. Are those farm workers? 

Mr. Shelton. It is the total. I don't know how it is broken 


Mr. Sparkman. Gould, what is the prevailing wage, what do you 
mean by that? 

Mr. Beech. It is the prevailing farm wage, and it is a dollar a day. 

Mr. Sparkman. This has been a very profitable discussion we have 
had this afternoon from all of you. Mr. Tolan had to leave to make a 
long distance call, and he asked me to express his regret at not being 
here for all of it. 

Mr. Beech. Might I express our appreciation that Congressmen 
would leave Washington, when they don't have to, on a job like this? 
We newspaper men read the Congressional Record and hear our Con- 
gressman talk, but it is not often we have a chance to talk back to you. 
We appreciate the opportunity. I wish some of the radio commenta- 
tors had a similar experience, and, I think if they did, they would be 
a little less impatient with Congressmen, and those problems would 
not seem so simple to them. 

Mr. Sparkman. I appreciate those remarks, and I might say this 
committee has been all over the United States. I suppose we have 
had 30 or 35 hearings. We have talked about every phase of the 
activities of this country pertaining to the migration of people. 

Mr. Arnold. I want to say, too, that many of the recommendations 
of this committee have been accepted by the officials of the Govern- 
ment, especially with respect to the removal of enemy aliens on the 
west coast. And we would have been in a far better position today if 
our recommendations about the conversion of the automobile industry 
and the spread of contracts had been accepted before Pearl Harbor. 
We were hammering on that last spring a year ago, 6 or 8 months 
before Pearl Harbor. But, of course, we realize it is difficult in peace- 
time to convert plants to wartime production, in a democracy. 


Mr. Zuber. May I make a statement about something else Mr. 
Burke told me he would like for me to talk on in connection with the 
migration problem? We have recently had establish ed in Birmingham, 
and Jefferson County a regional planning commission, the Jefferson 
County Regional Planning Commission. It was established under a 
State law enacted in 1935. It is really a metropolitan area planning 
commission. We have a State planning commission in Alabama, but 
the Jefferson County Regional Planning Commission is the first local 
or regional planning commission that has been set up in the State. 
It is just now getting under way. We are trying to obtain one of the 
Federal short-cut planning projects, which means that the National 
Resources Planning Board will send down consultants for 6 or 8 
months to help us do in a few months what might ordinarily take 2 or 
3 or 4 years to do, in the way of obtaining data and making use of 
them. We have had 3 or 4 officials look over the situation and they 
are going to establish 7 or 8 of these demonstration planning projects 
out over the country. I am sure this committee has already found 
out about what the National Resources Planning Board is doing in 
that direction, and I believe they would find it very interesting and 
profitable to work with them or follow their efforts in that direction, 
because it will have a lot to do with the utilization of plant capacity 
and available workers in the post-war period. We hope in Jefferson 
County to establish a permanent planning commission which will 
have two functions: helping in our post-war planning and informing 


and advising local officers, city and county and other municipal officers, 
in various municipalities in Jefferson County; and helping them plan 
for continuing growth and development of their communities. That 
problem is basically one of finding out where your people should work 
and where they should live and play and seek their recreation. We 
have in Birmingham, which is a rather sprawling city up and down 
Jones Valley, a great deal of unused land. This is an advantage in a 
way and a disadvantage in others. It tends to depress property 

We hope to help out in the solution of the migratory worker problem 
in our own area by what we do with our Regional Planning Commis- 
sion, because part of our studies will be economic and sociological. 
They will be aimed at finding out how much population Birmingham 
and Jefferson County can reasonably expect to have and support and 
provide work for and at taking means of utilizing our resources in 
such a way as to provide reasonable employment for our population, 
and at the same time do all we can to discourage uneconomic activities. 

I happen to have been made a member of this Regional Planning 
Commission. It has nine members. Incidentally they are appointed 
by the Governor. I bring this out because I would like to see this 
committee, Congress as a whole and the Federal Government as a 
whole, encourage the establishment, wherever it can be done, of local 
and regional planning commissions. 

We have in this State of Alabama something that does in some ways 
the same things, but it is quite differently conceived, and that is the 
Tennessee Valley Authority. That is in a large degree a planning 

In Birmingham and Jefferson County we hope to accomplish some- 
thing really worth while with our planning commission, but it seems 
to me that all over Alabama there should be regional planning 

I believe that national agencies, such as the National Resources 
Planning Board, the Farm Security Administration and Farm Exten- 
sion Service and similar planning and action agencies of the Federal 
Government, together with appropriate agencies of the State and 
local government, can accomplish a great deal in a relatively short 
time if they will get together or try to make use of available informa- 
tion and material that is already stacked up in Washington and in 
the State capitals and elsewhere in each locality. I am told by my 
friends in the National Resources Planning Board that in Washington 
it is perfectly amazing the amount of information they have about 
Birmingham. And that is one of the, purposes of our commission, to 
bring it together and bring it to bear on the problems of Birmingham 
and Jefferson County in such a way as to help find the answer. I think 
it can be done almost anywhere. 

Mr. Sparkman. I fully agree with you, and I think that is true of 
all these general areas. We appreciate that further comment. 

Again I want to say we are thankful to all of you gentlemen for 
giving us this able discussion. 

Mr. Abbott. Mr. Chairman, I should like at this time to offer for 
the record a group of exhibits which will serve to supplement the 
b parings here. 

The Chairman. The exhibits will be made a part of the record. If 
there, is nothing further, the committee will stand adjourned. 


Exhibit 1. — Statement by Alexander Nunn, Managing Editor, 
The Progressive Farmer, Birmingham, Ala. 

The committee will probably be told a number of times of the agricultural 
background in the State, how for so many years we largely depended on corn and 
cotton except for a relatively short period during World War I when livestock 
development jumped and of the year-by-year mining and washing away of our 
soils that this sort of farming brought. You will undoubtedly have pointed out 
also the general sharecropper system as it existed from the close of the Civil War 
until rather recent years. I think a study of the figures will show further that a 
rather decided trend away from cotion began after the bumper cotton year of 
1926. The year 1932, for example, was a rather outstanding year in food and feed 
production and a rather ordinary year for cotton production, though of course 
part of the reduction that year must be credited to smaller fertilizer applications. 

It seems to me the most decided changes in the State in the last 8 years have 
been toward soil improvement, much larger numbers of beef cattle, a much larger 
acreage to winter legumes, and other soil-improving crops, including the perennial 
legumes, kudzu, and Sericea lespedeza, and a gradual increase in practically all 
forms of livestock. I feel also that our folks do know considerably more about 
marketing than they knew 10 years ago, but we are still far behind. In the field 
of human relations, it seems to me the Farm Security Administration has done a 
remarkable job in giving thousands of low-income families a new feeling that they 
have a stake in the South and in Alabama, and in pioneering such developments 
as long-time leases, cooperative health associations, and particularly in the last 
18 months, giving a tremendous boost to food and feed production. I believe the 
Agricultural Extension forces and Soil Conservation workers should get the major 
credit for the great improvements we have made in our soils and in our soil- 
building program. In the social field also, the teaching of vocational agriculture 
and vocational home economics has tremendously expanded since 1928, and these 
two groups represent the largest single agency for definite instruction in better 
farming and better homemaking that we have. 

Looking at the soil problem, it seems to me we are bound to admit that at 
least an important part of the credit for the bumper crops made in recent years 
must be credited to the soil-conservation activities begun in 1933 through the 
Agricultural Adjustment Administration, the Soil Conservation Service, and 
other cooperating agencies. I believe that our soils are better prepared today 
to stand temporary fertilizer shortages than at any time since 1917. We have 
hardly begun to build back the reservoir of fertility that we should have, but at 
least we have made tremendous progress as compared with our situation a few 
years ago. In general, I believe that in connection with the soils program, the 
change in crops has been very definitely toward the type of program that the 
Government is now asking for in its food-for-victory campaign. For your further 
information, I'm attaching a proof of a special feature about Tallapoosa County, 
Ala., that will appear in our March issue as an example of what a coordinated 
program for soil rehabilitation can do. In general, however, the fact should 
not be lost sight of that our major problem still remains that of having enough 
to sell. In other words, except for cotton, the State of Alabama is not yet pro- 
ducing enough per man, per family, or per farm to insure a reasonable income 
regardless of prices, and that is tied in directly with our soil fertility problem 
along with other factors. 

There has been, to my way of thinking, and still remains, a serious problem 
from the marketing end in encouraging the development of many diversified 
crops. Today the beef cattleman and the hog raiser are pretty well protected 
from the standpoint of satisfactory market outlets. The family that attempts 
to expand in poultry raising, however, or the truck grower, or the fruit grower, 
may or may not be able to develop the enterprises satisfactorily for simple lack 
of marketing facilities. Right now, for instance, there is in some sections of 
Alabama a decidedly unsatisfactory price situation for fresh eggs, simply be- 
cause there is no system whatever for grading and pooling the eggs and getting 
them out of surplus areas. In my home section near Auburn, eggs have been 
selling as low as 20 to 21 cents in the last few days, and yet in Birmingham eggs 
have continued to sell for 35 to 45 cents. And yet for the State as a whole, we 
import thousands and thousands of cases every year. 



I'm sure you will hear among other things of the progress that has been made 
in the development of cold-storage locker units led by the State department of 
agriculture in most counties of the State. You should hear also of the real prog- 
ress that has been made in this State in recent years in developing a better quality 
of chickens so that the livestock report for January 1 this year showed a larger 
increase in Alabama over 1941 than was shown by any other State in the Nation, 
though Georgia and Oklahoma were right behind us. I believe that a consider- 
able part of this credit must go to Extension Poultryman John E. Ivey and the 
poultrymen all over the State for the starting of an R.O.P. breeding project at 
Auburn about 4 years ago, and more particularly in recent months to the great 
emphasis that was given last year by the regional Farm Security Adminis- 
tration organization in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, and Florida to increase 
poultry flocks for families under their supervision. 

There has been, of course, a tremendous growth in the Irish potato industry in 
Baldwin County, with much attention given to marketing, but if I understand 
conditions at all there, the problem is not by any means solved or yet on a satis- 
factory basis. 

Hardly more than a year ago, it was my opinion that defense industries would 
not too seriously handicap farmers in the State from the labor standpoint. As 
month after month has passed, however, I have been obliged to radically revise 
my thinking. Today there is a serious labor problem in the State. In my own 
home section, there are numbers of farmers who have no help whatever and large 
numbers of farms are operating with a shortage of help. Most of the farms, I 
believe, can hold on fairly well by better use of the labor they have, better organ- 
ization of their farm plans, and better use of equipment so far as they are able to 
secure better equipment. I think it is true also that defense industries in this 
State have grown much more rapidly in importance than they have in most ad- 
joining areas, so that there has perhaps been a greater trend away from farms in 
this State than in Georgia or in Tennessee or in Mississippi, for example. The 
labor shortage has many angles to it other than the actual competition of defense 
industries. Farm prices, until recent months, have not been high enough to enable 
the average farmer to pay competitive wages with urban industries. Because of 
two decades of low prices and the urgent necessity for operating on as low a basis 
as possible, I think there has also grown up in many farmers' minds a feeling that 
they cannot pay prices above a certain scale when, as a matter of fact, by adding 
better equipment (sometimes very simple equipment), and reorganizing their farm 
plans, they could perhaps greatly increase their wage scale. Six months from 
now, I may have cause to regret ever having said as much in print, but for a long 
time I have personally handled my own farm operations on the theory that if any 
family was willing to consider its income from all sources and not purely as a 
matter of cash, I could compete with any ordinary urban wage rates. For many 
farms now, I believe the problem is not even a matter of doing that. There are 
many wage and tenant families who are not willing to consider the matter of food, 
housing, or future security. All they can see is the immediate cash money in 
their pockets. 

I'd like to close with the observation that while the number of farms in this 
State has shown a decrease of around 40,000 since 1930, that apparently we have 
as many people on the farms as at that time, and that the change has simply 
been a change in status from cropper or renter to wage hand, and I never have 
been able to believe that the cropper status is as bad as pictured. Anything 
that gives a man a stake in the land or a feeling that he has a part in what he is 
doing is a step forward, and worth while, if other factors involved are handled at 
all satisfactorily. 

Exhibit 2. — Statement by H. N. Young, Agricultural Economist, 
Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg, Va. 

Some Factors Affecting Long-Time Adjustments in Southern Agricul- 
ture ' 
(An address delivered before a meeting of the Southern Agricultural Workers, 
Memphis, Tenn.) 
That standards of living are, on the average, appreciably lower in the South- 
eastern States than in any other large section of our country is, we believe, un- 
questioned by all careful students of the subject. According to Prof. H. W. 

i This includes Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Alabama, Missis- 
sippi, Louisiana, and Arkansas. Kentucky was omitted because we believe that it has more of the charac- 
terist ics of a Northern than of a Southern State. Texas and Oklahoma were also omitted from this discussion 
because the agricultural problems in these States are markedly different from those we have just enumerated. 


Odum, the per capita income in the 11 Southeastern States in 1929 was $360. 
This was much lower than in any other region of the United States. The per 
capita income of the farm population was reported to be $183, which was also 
much lower than the comparable figure for any other part of the country. 

There are undoubtedly many reasons for the comparatively lower per capita 
income of southern farmers. It is our belief that low per capita production is the 
principal factor limiting incomes and, therefore, lowering standards of living on our 
southern farms. That consumption is dependent upon production is axiomatic. 
The people of India, for example, consume little because little is produced there. 
Standards of ,'living in the United States are high, primarily because the per capita 
production is high. Efficiency is the keynote of American agriculture and business. 
For more than a decade a great deal has been written about what the authors 
call "the evils of efficiency." It has been claimed that because we are so efficient 
we have produced too much; that we have brought about a disastrous depression,- 
and that the remedy for all this is to decrease our efficiency and to return at least 
part way to the agriculture of our forefathers. We have examined a great deal 
of data and have read many books and bulletins, but we have failed to find any 
evidence that the agricultural depression was caused primarily because we have 
produced too much. It is true that during the depression, and, we believe, be- 
cause of it, that tremendous surpluses accumulated on our markets; surpluses 
which could not be sold, in many cases, at anything near what it cost to produce 
them, and at times not at all. The accumulation of these surpluses is what has 
generally been referred to as overproduction. The word "overproduction" has 
come to mean many things to many persons. In many cases it apparently 
means "too much efficiency." When our civilization reaches such a stage that 
there is enough food so that none may hunger; that there are sufficient clothes to 
protect us all, not only from the scorching rays of the summer sun and the cold 
blasts of the winter wind, but also from the scorching glances of our neighbors; 
when our housewives shall have all those home conveniences which remove the 
drudgery from labor; when our homes are lighted by electricity, are fitted with 
modern plumbing, and contain bathrooms with running hot and cold water; when 
all houses are made healthful and livable; when we have purchased all the books 
and reading material which we need for the improvement of our minds and souls; 
when all of us have all of these things and many others; then, and not until then, 
shall we be willing to admit that we have overproduction. We are apparently 
living in an age in which there is much confusion of terms. But this is probably 
to be expected. There is always much confusion in our thinking during periods 
of great emergencies. Let us' hope that as this emergency passes our thinking 
will become clear and that we shall be able to recognize that there is usually 
more than one cause for most things. 

As far as we have been able to determine, the output per farm is considerably 
less in the 10 Southeastern States than in any other large section in the United 
States. According to the census of 1930, the estimated value per farm of all farm 
production in the 10 Southeastern States was $1,046, as compared with $1,664, 
the average for the country as a whole. The value of crops produced was $886, 
and of livestock products, $160 per farm. The average value per farm of all 
livestock, as reported by the census of 1930, was $325 for the 10 Southeastern 
States and $964 for the whole country. The average number of cattle of all 
kinds and ages per farm was three, and the average number of swine was 4. 
The census reports that an average of 158 dozens of eggs were produced per farm 
in 1929 in the 10 Southeastern States. If each member of the farm family in this 
region were to consume one egg per day practically no eggs would be left to sell. 

The census reports that an average of 504 gallons of milk were produced per 
farm in the 10 Southeastern States in 1929. If all this milk had been made into 
butter there would have been enough to furnish each farm family with from 
3 to 4 pounds per week. When we consider that nearly all the milk supply of the 
southern cities comes from this total, its inadequacy becomes at once apparent. 

The output per farm is much less in the 10 Southeastern States than in any 
other part of the country. The average farmer in this region produces little 
because he has little with which to produce. According to the census of 1930, 
the average size of farm in the 10 Southeastern States was 70 acres, as compared 
with 157 acres for the United States as a whole. The average value of farm 
real estate was $2,733 per farm in the Southeastern States, and $7,614 per farm 
in the whole country. Implements and machinery were valued at $157 in the 
Southern States, and at $527 per farm in the country as a whole. 

From 1880 to 1930 the output per farm in the United States more than doubled, 
but in the 10 Southeastern States it increased less than one-third. From 1880 to 


1910, agricultural output per farm increased about 16 percent in the South and 
about 72 percent in the country as a whole. From 1910 to 1930, agricultural 
efficiency increased about 25 percent in the whole country, but less than 10 per- 
cent in the 10 Southeastern States. 

The failure of the South to increase its agricultural efficiency as rapidly as the 
rest of the country is the factor which, in our opinion, is most responsible for its 
present low per capita incomes, low standards of living, and the general back- 
wardness of some of its most worthwhile social 'institutions. There are perhaps 
many reasons -why agricultural efficiency in the South has not kept pace with 
that of the rest of the country. The rapid decline which has occurred in the 
average size of farm is, in our opinion, one of the most important factors. From 
1880 to 1930. the average size of farm in the 10 Southeastern States declined 
more than 50 percent, but increased 2 percent in the country as a whole. Prin- 
cipally through intensification of the cropping system, southern farmers, by 1930, 
had increased the amount of business per farm by nearly one-third, in spite of 
the fact that they had less than 50 percent as many acres to work with, on the 
average, as in 1880. 

From 1880 to 1930, the cotton crop more than doubled; the Flue-Cured Tobacco 
Belt has extended eastward onto the coastal plain and southward well into 
Georgia. The production of intensive vegetable crops for local and early north- 
ern markets has increased many fold, but up to 1930 the livestock industry had 
made little or no progress in spite of the fact that numerous attempts had been 
made to revive it. It is noteworthy that the production of livestock and its 
products per farm was less in 1920 than it was in 1900. The production of live- 
stock products increased, however, from 1920 to 1930, and has made relatively 
large increases since that time. Many persons consider that the recent increase 
in livestock production has been caused mainly by the recent Federal programs, 
and apparently think that perhaps this may be the starting point in the estab- 
lishment of a permanent livestock industry of considerable importance. Our 
opinion is that most of the recent increase which has taken place in livestock 
production has been because of the low prices recently obtained for crops, par- 
ticularly cotton and tobacco. It is usually true when prices fall that farmers 
whose main source of income is the sale of cash crops are driven, at least tempo- 
rarily, into self-sufficing agriculture as a matter of self-defense. 

In view of the fact that lack of efficiency is one of the most important factors 
limiting the incomes of southern farmers, it would seem that production restric- 
tion programs should be practiced only as temporary measures, if at all. The 
practice of restricting production as a long-time program must, out of necessity, 
reduce the output per farm, unless, of course, the number of farms decline accord- 
ingly. We have studied a great deal of history and we fail to remember ever 
having learned that any large class of the human race were ever able to benefit 
themselves permanently by producing less. 

It seems to us that there are two general ways of increasing the efficiency of 
southern agriculture. The first would involve a reduction in the number of 
farms. If the industrialization program of the twenties should continue, it will 
undoubtedly furnish employment to many persons who are now farmers. Any 
considerable decentralization of industry would probably furnish employment to 
many others on a part-time basis. It seems to us that the continued industrial- 
ization of the south may well be looked upon with favor by both industry and 
agriculture. It should permit industry to obtain the use of comparatively cheap 
labor and it should assist agriculture in disposing of some of its excess workers, 
thus permitting the enlargement of farms. Such a program would also furnish an 
increased demand for agricultural products. Its final working out, it seems to 
us, should rest primarily with industry. 

The second method which we have in mind for increasing the efficiency of our 
southern farmers would be that of producing more on our present small number 
of acres. This program of intensification is exactly what farmers themselves 
have been doing for the last 50 or 60 years. It has been made possible by practic- 
ing increasingly more intensive cropping. How rapidly and how much further the 
cropping system may be intensified depends, it seems to us, upon how rapidly the 
markets are able to absorb the increased products at favorable prices. Further 
industrialization of the South would be a distinct aid leading toward the exten- 
sion of the market, which fact is so necessary if southern farmers are to continue 
to intensify their farming operations. 

One of the proposals most commonly advanced for increasing the welfare of 
southern agriculture is the establishment of what some persons call a "better bal- 
anced agriculture." This expression, "balanced agriculture," means many things 


to many persons. To those who most commonly recommend a better balanced 
system of farming in the South, it apparently means the establishment of a system 
of general farming in which the sale of livestock and its products will furnish an 
important source of farm receipts. It is claimed by many of the advocates of this 
plan that such a system of farming will provide a more even distribution of labor 
throughout the year and throughout the working day; that it will provide a cheap 
method of maintaining the fertility of the land; that the livestock can be maintained 
cheaply because it will be possible to pasture them nearly the whole year; that 
livestock can be made a means through which unsalable roughages and waste crops 
can be marketed; and, finally, that such a system of farming will remove a great 
deal of the risk which attends the present system. This proposal has many advo- 
cates. Perhaps we should pause here to examine it. 

The success of this plan, as advocated, depends primarily upon how cheaply 
livestock and its products can be produced. It is not far' from a truism that 
livestock and livestock products are produced the world over on cheap feed and 
pasture, except, of course, in those cases in which special prices are obtained. 
Cattle of all kinds, and sheep, are raised mostly in regions where grass grows 
abundantly and where there is plenty of natural pasture. Principally because of 
its hot climate, the Cotton Belt of the United States has long been" known as a 
region in which it is difficult to maintain a good grass sod. Unless and until grasses 
can be found which are adapted to the hot climate of our South, it would seem 
a very difficult problem to produce dairy products, for example, in competition 
with such sections as New England, New York, Wisconsin, and Minnesota where 
the principal cost of maintaining a good pasture is that of keeping the fences in 
repair. Of course, it is possible to produce milk in almost any section of the 
United States. It costs more to produce it, however, where there is a lack of 
natural pasture. A recent Virginia study indicates that it costs, on the average, 
more than $3 per 100 pounds to produce milk in the area which supplies this 
product to the city of Norfolk. The fact that the people in the city of Norfolk 
are willing and able to pay good prices for this product makes it possible for the 
nearby dairymen to produce at a small profit. If it were necessarv for these men 
to sell their milk at butter-and-cheese prices, it would not be possible for them to 
long continue in business. It is possible that the introduction of lespedeza and 
other grasses may solve the pasture problem in the South. This is a question 
which needs much careful investigating. 

It is our judgment that until the South finds some method of establishing and 
maintaining cheap pasture that it cannot hope to compete with the North in the 
production of dairy products, and that it will be forced to limit its production 
of milk to the needs of the local fluid markets and to that of the farm home. 

The raising of more hogs has frequently been recommended as a method of 
balancing the farm business in the Southern States. If hogs are to be produced 
successfully in this section, in competition with hogs grown in the Corn Belt, it 
is necessary, of course, to produce them by cheap methods. There has been a 
significant decline in hog numbers in Virginia, except in those parts of the State 
where hogs are raised without feeding them much corn. When we consider that 
about 20 bushels of shelled corn, or its equivalent in other things, are required to 
make a 200-pound hog, we probably have the chief reason why many farmers in 
a large part of the South are producing so few hogs. Since 1867 there have been 
only 16 years when the Virginia farm price of a 200-pound hog was as much as 
the Virginia farm price of 20 bushels of corn. Farmers in Virginia have learned 
that if they are to raise hogs economically on a commercial scale they cannot 
afford to feed them too much corn. The only section in Virginia in which there 
has been a significant increase in hog numbers is the peanut and Cotton Belt of 
the southeastern part of the State. Cheap methods of raising and fattening hogs 
are practiced, and a minimum amount of corn is fed. It seems likely that a 
considerable section of the South along the Atlantic Coastal Plain mav be able 
to produce a special kind of soft pork by using cheap methods. There may be 
other parts of the South where similar methods may be practiced. It seems 
highly improbable, however, that hog production can be made to pay throughout 
the South by the feeding of corn, although there may be certain areas which are 
exceptions to this. 

It is thought by many persons that the South should go into the commercial 
poultry business on a large scale. There are two reasons, it seems to us, why 
this part of the country has not already done so. First, the South is a deficit 
area in the production of feed grains. If a large amount of eggs were produced 
it would be necessary to ship most of the feed in from the Corn Belt. Secondly, 


most of the eggs would need to be shipped long distances by express if they were 
to be sold on the large eastern markets. It would be necessary, therefore, to 
pay the freight on the feed and the express on the eggs, which for many years 
past would have left no margin of profit. That part of the United States which 
is along the Atlantic seaboard and adjacent to the large northeastern cities, is 
probably the most important commercial poultry-producing area in this country. 
Most of the feed used in producing the poultry and eggs in this section is shipped 
in from the West by freight. The eggs are shipped to the nearby markets by 
express. Because of the fact that the distances are short, the eggs arrive on the 
market as fresh eggs and the express charges are small. The Corn Belt of the 
Central West produces a majority of the cold-storage eggs which are consumed 
in this country. Most of these eggs are produced by farm flocks which are given 
little care and which pick up most of their feed around the buildings and on the 
ground. This section markets its eggs in large quantities and by freight. It has 
no freight to pay on feed. It would be necessary for the Cotton Belt to pay both 
the freight on the feed and the express on the eggs. 

It seems to us that the commercial production of livestock and its products 
in the South is limited primarily by lack of cheap and abundant raw materials; 
namely, cheap pasture and feed; that livestock and its products may be profitably 
produced to supply the special needs of local markets at special prices; and that 
sufficient livestock may be produced on farms to supply the family needs. Until 
the problems of cheap pasture and feed are solved, we see little possibility of a 
much further increase in the commercial production of livestock and its products 
unless the industrial population expands. Furthermore, as long as the average 
size of farm remains as small as it is the need for intensification will be so great 
that the keeping of livestock for commercial purposes will be nearly an impossi- 
bility, except in the case of a comparatively small percentage of the farms. 

It is undoubtedly true that there are a considerable number of farmers in the 
Cotton Belt who are now producing livestock and its products at a profit. It is our 
guess that in the majority of these cases a special price is obtained for the product. 
We do not think that it would be a sound recommendation to advise all farmers 
in the Cotton Belt to adopt the practices which are followed by a few individuals 
who are specializing to meet the particular needs of local markets at special prices. 

This does not mean that we abandon the idea that the South should maintain 
a well-balanced agriculture. We think that there is just as great need for a well- 
balanced system of farming in the South as in any other part of the country. 
We think, however, that a different interpretation should be placed upon the mean- 
ing of the word "balance." If our understanding of the situation is correct, the 
idea held by most persons as to what a well-balanced agriculture is has been ob- 
tained from studying the results of research work on general farms, most of which 
were located in the general farming sections of the North. It is our belief that in 
the average general farming section of the North that a well-balanced business 
probably means one in which a considerable proportion of the farm receipts origi- 
nate from the sale of livestock and a considerable proportion from the sale of cash 
crops. While this may be the correct interpretation to place upon the term 
"balance" in certain parts of the United States, it does not follow that it is also the 
correct interpretation to place upon the meaning of the word when thinking about 
the agriculture of other parts of the country. It is our opinion that the best 
balanced farm is the one which makes the most effective utilization of the resources 
which it possesses. In sections of the country where there is plenty of natural 
pasture, along with an abundance of good cropland, it would seem that the best- 
balanced farming system is one which uses most effectively both of these kinds of 
land. In sections where there is little cropland a great deal of pasture, it would 
seem that the livestock industry should be emphasized rather than the cropping 
system in order that the natural resources at hand may be most effectively utilized. 
In those sections of the country, however, in which most of the land is so valuable 
that it can be used only for cropping, it would seem that the thing to emphasize is 
the economical production of crops, and that livestock should occupy a minor 
place in the farm business. There probably is such a thing as a well-balanced crop 
farm. What has apparently been happening on the Eastern Shore of Virginia 
during the past few years illustrates what we have in mind. There was a time 
when the production of sweet and Irish potatoes was carried on almost to the 
exclusion of other things. During the recent depression there have been a number 
of very disastrous crop years, and many farmers on the Eastern Shore have found 
themselves in a very unfavorable financial condition. During this time a number 
of well-meaning persons have recommended the commercial production of dairy 
products, others of sheep and wool, and still others of hogs and poultry. The 


poultry industry on the Eastern Shore seems to be expanding, but there is little 
indication that other livestock enterprises are likely to become of much importance. 
During the last few years farmers, themselves, have balanced their farming opera- 
tions by adding more intensive vegetable enterprises to the few which they already 
had. This has probably had the tendency to distribute the labor more evenly 
throughout the year and throughout the working day, and has removed a great 
deal of the risk from the farming operations. 

Generally speaking, a well-balanced farm business is one which combines the 
various enterprises of the farm in such proportions that the greatest profit is 
obtained from the farm business as a whole. It is our opinion that there are a 
number of ways of bringing about the most-desired balance, and that what may 
be the best-balanced farming system in one part of the country may possibly be 
the poorest in some other section. What the best balanced fanning system of 
the Cotton Belt may be, we are in no position to even suggest. This is a matter 
which needs a great deal of research before it can be settled intelligently. Sitting 
in our offices and thinking about the problem will not settle it. It would seem 
to us that the most desirable thing to do would be to obtain more of the facts of 
the situation. After we have obtained these facts, and analyzed them statis- 
tically, we shall be in much better position to think the thing through, in our 
offices, than we are now. 

We wish to emphasize the fact that if southern agriculture is to become more 
efficient it must decrease the number of its farms, or it must cultivate the land 
which it now farms more intensively. As we have previously suggested, a more 
intensive cultivation of the land can be brought about with profit only as an 
expansion of the market takes place. When and if this occurs it would seem that 
it will probably pay to give more attention to erosion control and fertility main- 
tenance. In a general system of farming it is necessary to maintain the fertility 
of the land by cheap methods. As the land becomes more intensively cultivated 
it becomes increasingly possible to maintain fertility by progressively more ex- 
pensive methods. One of the principal objections to establishing a commercial 
livestock business in the Cotton Belt, aside from the absence of cheap feed, is the 
fact that a livestock business, with the possible exception of poultry, would require 
more acres per dollar of income than the system which is being followed at present. 
It would extensify, rather than itensify, the farm business, and therefore lower, 
rather than increase, efficiency. 

.Exhibit 3. — Statement by Robert Gregg, President of the 
Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Co., Birmingham, Ala. 

Development of the Bust-at-Home Program in Alabama 

Some 16 years or more ago, the then president of the Tennessee Coal, Iron, 
and Railroad Co. was asked by the secretary of the Chamber of Commerce of 
Montgomery why it was that industry in Alabama did not buy Alabama-raised 
products. The reply was that Alabama-raised products were not properly 
graded and were not available in dependable quantities for use. The further 
assertion was made that it certainly was the desire of industry to be cooperative 
with agriculture in every possible way to the end that both might prosper together. 

At that time the Tennessee Co. owned a very large number of mules which were 
used in its mines and in the manufacturing plants. Hay for feeding these mules 
in quantities reaching 1,000 tons per annum was being shipped into the Birming- 
ham district at a terrifically heavy cost over that of Alabama-raised hay, but it 
was hay that was in good marketable condition and thoroughly reliable as high- 
grade stock feed. Our people undertook an intelligent survey of the possibilty 
an Alabama for the proper grading, curing, and marketing of Johnson grass hay, 
and through the cooperation of the established farm agencies in the State it was 
soon possible to secure all of the hay required by this company within the State 
or immediate surrounding States of just as good grade for our purposes, and at 
enormous annual savings. 

This experience of the company made it very forcibly to understand the inter- 
dependence between agriculture and industry and encouraged it to launch a pro- 
gram of assisting the farmers in Alabama in the marketing of their surplus agricul- 
ture crops. They undertook a survey of the various counties of the State of Ala- 
bama to ascertain just what was being raised and not marketed; what markets 
were available and not supplied by locally raised products and what channels of 
marketing could be developed through coordination of efforts of the various farm 
agencies, together with the farmers, bankers, and representatives of industry. 


This company normally sells its products in the southeastern States, namely, 
North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee. 
In addition, Louisiana and Texas are served as well as the west coast of the 
United States. These States, as is well known, are primarily agricultural States. 

The Tennessee Co., when it started a diversification program soon after the 
World War, realized that as its natural trade territory prospered, so would it 
grow and prosper and, therefore, followed a natural tendency in endeavoring to> 
build up the buying power of the farmer. 

The farm products division of this company was formed to aid and assist farmers 
and all agencies which might contribute thereto in improving their farming and 
marketing methods, looking toward the development finally of the whole agricul- 
tural South. 

The survey which this company undertook showed that certain sections of 
Alabama were particularly adapted to grasses for stock raising: to vegetable 
raising; dairying, hogs, and peanuts, but that in most cases there were decided 
prejudices against the home-grown products. There was a woeful lack of proper 
curing, packing, and grading of products, and practically no facilities for market- 
ing or financing, but after a very short period of time statistics indicated that 
there were consumed in Birmingham alone more than $3,000,000 worth of 
Alabama-raised and marketed farm products annually. 

As indicated above, the first efforts of this company were exercised toward 
the proper raising and marketing of hay, but these efforts were later spread 
toward eggs, butter, cheese, and other dairy products; to sweet potato raising 
and grading; to cattle, hogs, and other livestock; and to the establishment of 
markets, packing nouses, etc., for the proper distribution of the products raised. 
Further, the activities of this company were directed toward interesting luncheon 
clubs in the 4-H club boys and girls programs; in cattle sales resulting from efforts 
of these children, and finally interesting packers and various financial institutions 
in lending financial and other aid, where it was indicated, toward the upbuilding 
of the State. 

A few years ago the efforts of this company were spread from Alabama into the 
States of North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, 
Tennessee, and Louisiana, in each of which States we have a farm products agent 
working with the various agencies of the respective States on whatever problem 
might be discovered and solved for the benefit of the farmer. Market surveys- 
are made and the benefits are passed on wherever it seems possible to do the most 
good, and to create buying power and economic security. 

When the various Army camps were established throughout the Southern 
States our respective farm "products agents interested themselves in advising not 
only the purchasing officials of the camps as to the availability of products nearby, 
but also in advising the farmers and merchants of the names, addresses, and ap- 
proach to the proper officials in the Army whom they could contact. As this has 
been an important feature of our work, and has lent a great deal of aid to the farm- 
ers, we are attaching as an agenda to this statement, as an illustration, a some- 
what detailed statement of what has happened in this regard in South Carolina. 
This is the only complete record immediately available as to our activities in con- 
nection with the armed forces' procurement of locally raised products, and ia 
indicative of what is being done in all of the above-named States. 

Exhibit 4. — Statement by S. A. Robert, Jr., and A. Lee Coleman, 
Division of Land Economics, Bureau of Agricultural Eco- 
nomics, Atlanta, Ga. 

The Gum Naval Stores Industry ' 

The gum naval stores industry is concentrated in the longleaf and slash pine 

areas of the Southeast. Operations extend over approximately 65,000,000 acres 

from North Carolina to Texas. Almost 75 percent of this 65,000,000 acres is in 

productive forests. 2 

i Data obtained in a stud> of the industry under the direction of a Department of Agriculture Interbureau 

1 Statistics on Gum Naval Stores Production, by Southern Forest Survey Staff, I. F. Eldredge, Regional 1 
Survey Director, Forest Survey Release No. 17. December 31, 1935. 


The products of the industry are derived from the oleoresin produced from the 
scarified or chipped slash or longleaf pine trees. In the first stage of processing — 
distillation — two products are derived, turpentine and rosin. These two products 
have important direct war uses, and they serve also as substitutes for products 
that cannot be obtained when foreign trade is hazardous. Paint is needed in 
increasing quantities during the war, and turpentine is one of the major paint 
thinners. It is the cheapest source of synthetic camphor, and since natural cam- 
phor comes exclusively from the Japanese island of Formosa, increased quantities 
of turpentine are going into this use. Rosin is used principally in the manufacture 
of soap, adhesives, plastics, paper sizing, varnish, and polish. Until recently it 
has been used only in the laundry soaps, but it is now being used in other soaps. 
To meet the anticipated increased demand for naval stores products the Secre- 
tary of Agriculture set as the 1942 gum naval stores production goal 450,000 
units 3 as compared with a production of 285,000 units in 1941. The purpose of 
this testimony is to mention some of the obstacles that appear to be retarding 
production and to suggest some means of removing them. 

With a decrease in production of gum naval stores from an annual average of 
about 525,000 units (from 1930 to 1935) to the low of 285,000 units in 1941, 
obviously a large number of the 43,000 laborers engaged in the industry in 1934 
(when 5i0,000 units were produced) were not needed to produce the 285,000 units 
in 1941. A movement of labor from the industry occurred even prior to the defense 
migration that began 2 years ago. As a result the 1942 season began with insuffi- 
cient labor to work the increased croppage. Labor from the industry has not as 
a rule gone directly into defense industries or into the armed forces, because of the 
lack of necessary qualifications. Rather, naval stores labor has replaced other 
labor that has gone into defense industries. 

The isolation of turpentine camps has influenced the relationship between 
operators and workers. The workers are predominately Negroes. Labor is often 
considered as much a resource to be exploited as the forests in which the work is 
carried on. Because the turpentine camps are isolated, the operators usually 
furnish the only police protection, and because needed labor can be obtained only 
with difficulty in many cases, operators sometimes use their police power to re- 
strict freedom of movement of labor in the belt. These conditions are hardly 
conducive to retaining workers or encouraging workers to return to the industry. 
Nor do they offer the incentive to increase production for war needs. 

Many of the large operators have a commissary through which they sell 
groceries, clothing, and tobacco to their workers. Several instances have been 
noted where operators have restricted the movements of laborers indebted to 
them through commissary accounts. 

Wage workers in the naval stores industry receive very low cash family 
incomes. 4 The average cash income available from all sources in 1941 was 
$418, or a little more than $100 per capita for the 165 families. Cash income 
for work in the naval stores industry alone averaged only $372 per year, and 
less than half of the families (46 percent) had income from other sources. 

While garden space is often provided by the operator, little food is produced by 
naval stores workers, primarily because of (1) lack of gardening supervision and 
(2) the movement of workers from one operation to another which reduces the 
practicability of home food production. Livestock generally is limited to a few 
chickens and a pig. Since such a small amount of subsistence is produced, cash 
income is virtually the total income. 

Wage workers are paid on a piece basis. The chippers receive their pay on the 
basis of the number of faces chipped while the dippers receive their pay according 
to the number of barrels of gum collected. _The average daily wage in 1941 was 
about $1.25 for chippers, and $1.10 for dippers. These wage rates represent 
a 35-percent increase over 1939, but during this period the cost of living increased 
approximately 25 percent. 

Poor housing is characteristic of the naval stores industry. Many wage workers 
live in one-room shacks, built in camps or "quarters," with no glass windows, 
no screens, and usually without individual water supply and sanitary facilities. 
Pew naval stores workers receive the benefit of regular medical and health services. 

3 A gum naval stores unit is defined as 50 gallons of turpentine and 1,348 pounds of rosin. The commod- 
ties are joint products of the oleoresin secured from living southern yellow pines. 

4 As indicated by data obtained in 165 interviews in 6 naval stores counties: Washington County, Ala • 
Alachua County, Fla.; and Colquitt, Clinch, Telfair, and Wayne Counties, Ga. 

60396—42 — pt. 32 16 


Schools furnished naval stores children are very poor. Out of a six-county 
study, only two had anv type of transportation for school children and this was 
available to a small number of children, usually not naval stores children. No 
transportation is supplied Negro children. In Clinch County, Ga., there was 
no 4-year high school available for Negroes, and although schools are available 
for most workers' families they are of a poor quality and generally extend only to 
the seventh or eighth grade. The educational facilities are only slightly better in 
the other counties studied. 

Naval stores financing, marketing, and distribution is concentrated in the hands 
of comparatively few people. There are seven major factorage houses furnishing 
credit to the industry and two large central processing firms. These establish- 
ments offer the major facilities of financing, marketing, and distributing of the 
products. Seventv-two percent of the products marketed in 1941 were handled 
by factorage houses. The factor furnishes on credit the groceries, supplies, and 
equipment needed for naval stores operations. The relative absence of other 
credit and marketing facilities and the ease of doing business with one organiza- 
tion, necessarily give the factorage houses supervisory control over many opera- 
tions. To the extent that some factors operate also as dealers they participate 
on both sides of the exchange and may thus influence prices. The factorage house 
receives for its services interest on the money loaned; profits on any equipment and 
supplies sold; a commission for selling the products; fees for storage and insurance 
when the factor operates storage facilities, and the profits or losses on any dealer 
operations carried on. 

The membership of the American Turpentine Farmers Association cooperative 
produces approximately 80 percent of the production of the industry. The asso- 
ciation does not operate on a one-member one-vote basis but upon the basis of one 
vote for each unit of production. This means that the organization is controlled 
by the larger members. The place of the American Turpentine Farmers Asso- 
ciation in securing Federal assistance for the industry and the cooperative medium 
that it affords producers, are of primary importance to the industry. 

The shortage of labor will probably be the greatest limitation on increasing 
production, but there are other hindrances that should be mentioned: 

(1) Markets that would permit small producers to market their gum are not 
available in some parts of the belt. In outlying sections, gum buyers purchasing 
crude gum are the only outlet. Many small producers in isolated areas will not 
be able to come into production in 1942 because they do not have ready access to 
an outlet for their products. . 

(2) A high proportion of the naval stores products is normally transported by 
truck to the nearest storage or marketing facilities. In the present emergency, 
the shortage of transportation facilities and in particular the shortage of tires will 
retard the production in more distant areas. 

(3) The lack of desirable living conditions and public services may accelerate 
the migration of labor. . 

Several things might be done to achieve increased production. Adjustments 
in credit and marketing facilities and improvements in labor relations should con- 
tribute toward the achievement of needed production. The following measures 
should encourage increased production for war needs: 

(1) The extension of existing factorage house credit to small producers and the 
provision of supplemental credit through production credit associations, national 
farm loan associations, Farm Security Administration, and local lending mstitu- 

(2) The provision of markets for gum produced by small operators through the 
utilization of stills not now in operation. Idle stills could be moved to localities 
where existing facilities are inadequate or lacking. _ 

(3) Cooperative use of available tires should be encouraged in areas where 
transportation of crude gum is necessary. The fullest use of available trans- 
portation facilities is essential throughout the belt. 

(4) Workers should be encouraged to produce at least a part of the needed 

(5) Some improvement should be made in housing furnished naval stores 
workers. Improved water supply and sanitary facilities should not await the 
termination of the war. # . 

(6) Wage rates will have to be increased if the industry is to retain its present 
workers. With saw mills and railroads paying $2.50 to $2.80 per day for a 
40-hour week, naval stores operators face considerable competition for labor. 


Exhibit 5. — Statement by Mack D. Rust, Rust Cotton Picker 
Co., Memphis, Tenn. 

The Cotton Picker and Farm Labor 

Up until very recently a majority of the people with whom my brother and I 
have discussed the question of agricultural labor in the South, seemed to feel it 
was hardly conceivable that a serious labor shortage in the Cotton Belt could 
actually occur. Some still feel that way. After the experience of the past 10 
or 12 years, they can't be blamed much for holding that opinion. But these are 
certainly times of quick and radical changes in many phases of our national 
thinking; and not the least of these will be the realization that agriculture is due 
for some far-reaching changes if it is fully to perform its part in the national 
defense program. If we might be allowed to think in terms of a good standard of 
living for the workers in this great sector of our economy, some of these changes 
certainly are already long past due. 

Last fall (1941) due to a combination of favorable circumstances not many 
sections of the cotton area felt any serious lack of labor for the harvest. But 
next season may be different. Within the coming year thousands of men wll be 
inducted into the armed forces. It is hardly possible that this will not affect the 
cotton field workers. Some will be drawn directly into the Army. Others will 
almost surely shift into other industries to take the place of men drafted from 
those industries. 

Among those planters operating entirely on the sharecrop basis, it may be that 
no serious shortage of labor will be felt within the present year, or possibly not 
within the following year. But the planters operating on the day-labor basis 
may find themselves not only far short of the required amount of harvest labor, 
but even short of sufficient labor to plant and cultivate the crop. 

Since the picking in most areas requires a much greater concentration of 
labor than any other operation in producing the crop, it seems obvious that 
the need for harvesting machinery will be most acute. The need for a chopping 
machine, and for better and more effective methods in cotton farming generally, 
will likewise be felt increasingly as more and more men are called to the colors. 

Introduction of the cotton-picking machine into this situation may be expected 
to produce results of far-reaching consequence both to national defense and to 
the future conditions of farm workers. The tremendous labor-saving capacity 
of the machine if used in mass quantities would release a multitude of workers 
for other duties. One such machine operated by two men can do the work of 
from 50 to 150 hand pickers under conditions of moderate to heavy yields. 

In areas where masses of hand pickers are transported long distances by truck 
and car to the fields each day, it may easily prove to be the case that the cost of 
fuel, oil, tires, and equipment used or worn out in the process of hauling the 
pickers to and from the fields would exceed that of machines picking an equivalent 
amount of cotton. Highway hazards and traffic accidents should be substantially 
reduced by eliminating the crowded flow of cars and trucks hauling pickers night 
and morning. 

From the viewpoint of the workers, their conditions of work could be measur- 
ably improved by employment in work closer home on more reasonable hours. 
From the viewpoint of conserving the nation's manpower, it should not be over- 
looked that the mass use of these machines could eventually release hundreds 
of thousands of workers for more effective employment in other types of work. 
Add to this the possibility that when the next harvest season rolls around, there 
may not be nearly enough labor available to pick all the cotton produced. Even 
last year some few fields were never completely harvested. Surely it does not 
make sense to spend time and materials growing a crop which will not be harvested. 

It is only too obvious that the process of mechanizing such a large operation 
cannot be accomplished overnight. It will require a considerable length of time 
to get such a program substantially under way. If, therefore, the cotton growers 
are going to be faced with a serious labor shortage, as appears so imminent, action 
should be taken to solve this problem as soon as possible. Unless some new and 
abundant source of labor can be found, the machine offers the best and possibly 
the only solution to this problem. Therefore, we believe that "When the full 
significance of the farm labor problem is realized, the cotton-picking machine 
will be in the greatest demand in history." 


Like most other machines, this machine cannot be claimed to be perfect. But 
experience with it to date proves it to be a practical device suitable for the purpose, 
and one which is good enough to begin producing and using on a wide scale, par- 
ticularly under the growing pressure of wartime needs. 

While no radical changes have been made in our machine during the last year, 
a number of minor refinements have been made which improve performance and 
make for steadier and more dependable operation in the field. 

The prospects for quantity production of the machine depend now upon the 
War Production authorities. Manufacturing facilities, priorities on required 
materials, and the necessary finances will have to be procured in order to begin 
mass production. Efforts are now being made to obtain early approval for such 
a program. What the result will be we do not yet know. 

As to what extent the picker eventually may be expected to perform all the 
operations now done by manual labor, this machine can, of course, perform only 
the one basic operation of picking the open cotton from the plants and delivering 
it into a suitable container. The wide use of the machine for picking operations, 
however, would tend to promote and accelerate the use of machines and improved 
mechanical methods for other farming operations, of which next to picking, 
chopping is the greatest problem now confronting the cotton grower. 

At the present time it is not clearly seen just how it will be possible to replace 
manual labor entirely by machinery in the hoeing. But machinery has already 
been developed which can eliminate a substantial portion of the manual chopping; 
and it seems reasonable to expect that with proper attention to these problems 
means will eventually be found for putting the industry almost, if not completely, 
on a mechanical basis. 

In that event a principal cause for migrations of the cotton workers will have 
been removed and the basis laid for them to become citizen residents capable of 
producing efficiently, earning a decent standard of living for their families, and 
taking an active, intelligent part in community life. 

Exhibit 6. — Statement by Brig. Gen. Ben M. Smith, State 
Director, Selective Service System, Montgomery, Ala. 

Occupational Deferment Policy 

This headquarters maintains and enforces the national policy of Selective 
Service in regard to occupational deferment in general. Local boards and district 
appeal boards in Alabama are urged to grant occupational deferment on an 
individual basis to those registrants who are "necessary" in the sense that they 
cannot be replaced without loss of effectiveness in their business, occupation, or 
enterprise. This headquarters maintains a liberal policy in this regard and in- 
sists that sufficient deferments be made to insure that the production of food and 
war materials continue on an uninterrupted basis. Also due consideration is 
given to deferment of those registrants in their civilian occupations, when it 
can be shown that such registrants cannot be replaced and that they are neces- 
sary for the health, safety or well-being of their community. 

Regardless of the recent war industries and activities which have come to 
Alabama, this is essentially an agricultural State and it has been necessary for 
this headquarters to pay particular attention to deferment of people engaged in 
the pursuit of agriculture. Occupational deferment on an individual basis is 
recommended for those registrants who are either farm owners, managers or 
laborers, when it can be shown that the production of the farm would be curtailed 
or interrupted by the induction of the registrant. This headquarters compiles 
and publishes each month a detail report on occupational deferments and it has 
been found that the report as of January 1, 1942, shows that more farmers have 
been deferred than any other occupation in this State. It is not possible for this 
office to inform you of the total number of persons deferred as essential to agri- 
culture since 1940, broken down by counties, since such records are not available 
by counties. 

A large number of farmers in this State have been granted dependency defer- 
ment rather than occupational deferments (farming), since the greater part of 
such farmers are married or have other dependents. As a matter of fact, occu- 
pational deferments in Alabama run very low as compared to other deferments, 
due to the fact that people in this State marry or acquire dependency status 
early in life. 


Your committee will be interested in the attached letter to Mr. Haygood 
Paterson, commissioner, Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries, 
which sets forth briefly the policy of this headquarters in regard to deferment of 
farm labor. 

This headquarters of Selective Service maintains close liaison with the Alabama 
Department of Agriculture and Industries, the Agricultural Adjustment Admin- 
istration, the State Agricultural Extension Service, the Farm Security Agency, 
the Alabama Farm Bureau and the Agricultural Planning Committee of the State 
of Alabama. This Headquarters also operates in cooperation with the Seventh 
Regional Office of Production Management Labor Supply Committee which is 
studying the farm-labor situation at the present time and through this committee 
maintains liaison with the agricultural program not only in Alabama, but in the 
entire Southeastern States. 

Montgomery, Ala., February 17, 1942. 
Hon. Haygood Paterson, 

Commissioner, Department of Agriculture and Industries, Montgomery, Ala. 
Dear Mr. Paterson: The increased war effort "Since Pearl Harbor" has made 
it extremely important that the production of certain farm products be expanded to 
the limit of the industry. The expansion of production of certain farm products 
is of vital importance to the National Defense production program. Among the 
most important commodities, and those in which tremendous expansion must 
be made, are 

milk and dairy products, 
eggs and egg products, 
poultry meat products, 
hogs and lard products. 

Selective Service Regulations state that a registrant shall be considered a 
"necessary man" in an agricultural enterprise if he cannot be replaced because of 
a shortage of persons with his qualifications or skill in such activity, and provided 
his removal would cause a serious loss of effectiveness in such activity. Upon the 
local boards in Alabama fall the responsibility of determining whether or not a 
person is a "necessary man" in his activity. 

In general it has been found that a shortage exists in persons qualified as farm 
managers. A determination must be made, however, in each particular case to 
determine whether or not the registrant can be successfully replaced. The 
availability of men in the community or county who could replace the registrant 
must be considered by the local board. State headquarters of Selective Service 
will urge occupational deferment for farm managers found to be "necessary men." 

In consideration of deferment of farm labor, the same determination must be 
made; that is, does the farm laborer qualify as a necessary man. To do this, 
it must be shown that he cannot be replaced in his activity. As long as farm 
labor can be replaced, no deferment may be allowed. Again consideration must 
be given in each individual case to the availability of persons in the community 
or county who are qualified to replace the registrant. 

It is going to be a necessary contribution to the war effort that employers and 
farmers secure replacements for their employees who are subject to military 
service from one of the following groups: 

1. Persons outside draft age. 

2. Persons deferred because of dependents. 

3. Persons deferred because of physical condition. 

4. Women. 

_ Alabama farmers are expected to cooperate fully in fulfilling their dual respon- 
sibility of furnishing men to the armed forces and increasing food production. 
Sincerely yours, 

Ben M. Smith, 
Brigadier General, 
Adjutant General's Department, 

State Director. 


Exhibit 7. — Statement by E. M. Norment, District Supervisor,. 
United States Employment Service, Social Security Board, 
Memphis, Tenn. 

With reference to the present labor situation, especially farm labor in this 
area, as I testified at a previous hearing before your committee in Montgomery, 
Ala., in 1940, 1 I would say: 

First. Our service is still being maintained under approximately the same 
conditions as existed in 1940, with the exception that the Tennessee State Em- 
ployment Service, of which we were a branch, was taken over by the United 
States Employment Service on the first of the year. 

Second. Whereas in 1940 we were concerned chiefly with attempting to place 
a large number of workers registered with us — there generally being more workers 
than there were jobs — now, we are engaged in an intensive search for workers 
qualified to fill the numerous orders for skilled mechanics that we receive through 
our national clearance system; also, working in connection with the vocational 
educational schools and selecting trainees to be trained for jobs in defense in- 
dustries; also, in assisting employers in determining what jobs can be filled by 
the older worker, the handicapped, and lately, to an increasing extent, determining 
the jobs that can be filled by women workers and in recruiting such women 

From the farm angle, we found that during the cotton-picking season in 1941 
our daily referrals of day workers almost doubled that of the previous year, and 
that the plantation owners in an increasing number depended upon our service in 
furnishing cotton pickers. During the year over 440,000 day workers were sent 
out to the plantations of Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. This might be 
the same worker sent out on numerous orders, but would be a fair indication of 
the man-days labor sent through our office. I am enclosing copy of a report 
from the farm office showing the number of pickers and vehicles that were trans- 
ported, leaving the office during the month of September 1941, which was the 
beginning of the cotton-picking season. These represented mostly cotton 
pickers sent into Arkansas and constituted quite a problem in traffic, as it is 
necessary for them to cross the Harrahan Bridge which crosses the Mississippi, 
and vehicles must be spaced 50 feet apart which required the cooperation of the 
Memphis traffic and police force and Arkansas Highway Patrol, as well as a 
number of our employees. These workers were hauled in every type of vehicle 
from old passenger automobiles to large modern trucks carrying as many as 
90 workers. 

There is also quite a problem in recruiting this labor and it is done through the 
cooperation of the different owners and drivers of the vehicles used in transporting 
workers. In the early hours of the morning, when it is necessary for them to 
leave, there is no streetcar service and various truck drivers have picked up the 
workers in the vicinity of their homes. Of course, many live near our farm office 
and these walk there, catching trucks at that point. All trucks come by the 
office so that the driver may pick up the referral cards directing them to the 
various plantations. 

Our most serious problem this year will be transportation of these day workers 
to the various plantations. During cultivating season this will not be such a 
problem, as most truck drivers will still have tires good enough to carry them, 
but, by harvest season, these tires will be worn out. As most of these trucks 
and all passenger cars — of which there are several hundred — are privately owned, 
it will be very difficult for them to secure tires. We find that the business people, 
and others with sufficient money, have bought practically all good used tires and 
recapped tires regardless of the prices that they have been forced to pay, and, in 
many instances, people who can afford to do so have stored extra sets of tires in 
their homes and elsewhere, and have run the prices up to prohibitive levels which 
the average worker cannot afford to pay. 

I have no doubt there has been widespread bootlegging of recapped tires for 
higher prices than are allowed by the ceiling placed on such tires. Numerous 
subterfuges have been used, such as service charges for changing tires to increase 
the amount the dealer secures. Personally, I visited a number of tire shops 
yesterday and found that the prices for second-hand tires in a fair condition for 
the average small car were approximately $25 each, and that from statements 
made by tire shops, they have no trouble whatsoever in disposing of them at 

i Pt. 2. p. 783 



those prices. This is going to result in large numbers of defense workers in 
defense plants, which are mostly situated some miles from the city, being unable 
to use their cars to transport themselves and fellow workers to these jobs, and 
will especially deprive our plantation owners of large numbers of workers who 
travel in their own personal vehicles carrying numerous other workers with them 
to the plantations. 

In regard to the supply of labor, we are going to find that there will probably 
be a shortage, as the Selective Service will take many of the young and physically 
fit, while defense industries will attract many others, and the large flow of labor 
that is generally available in Memphis will be unable to reach the plantations 
unless some method is found to solve the transportation problem. The demand 
for labor will be larger we believe this year than last, as many plantations are 
increasing their acreage to raise food crops and, although many of them are 
attempting to secure families for sharecropping or day work, they will still have 
to rely on available day labor transported daily from this city. 

Housing in rural areas, of course, is another problem. As many of the planta- 
tions have used day labor in cultivating crops, they have not built sufficient houses 
to take care of families if same could be secured. With the increase in acreage 
and the use of modern machinery by plantations, the demand for permanent 
workers has greatly decreased in the past few years, while the demand for tem- 
porary day labor has greatly increased. It looks as though now there will be a 
housing problem on the farm as well as in the vicinity of defense plants which are 
located some miles from the city and the transportation problem will grow more 
acute as automobile tires grow more scarce. 

Summary. — We anticipate a demand in industrial plants — mostly engaged in 
defense work — of approximately 15,000 workers for 1942. This is to take care of 
expansion and replacements. Approximately 4,000 of these will be employed in 
defense plants situated some 20 miles from Memphis. Approximately half of 
these will be women and transportation and housing will be serious considerations. 

In agricultural labor, we could place at present from 700 to 1,000 families in the 
area served by our farm office. We will, in addition, probably be required to 
furnish 3,000 workers per day during the cultivation season, from April to June. 
During harvest season, from August to the latter part of December, some twelve 
to fifteen thousand workers will have to be transported to plantations per day. A 
large portion of these will also be women. The migration of workers who travel 
following the harvest season in vehicles owned by themselves will be seriously 
curtailed on account of tire shortages. This will affect some of the larger planta- 
tions in Arkansas who have seasonal workers following crop harvest from the 
south to the north. 

We believe that in Memphis proper, with the exception of skilled workers, there 
will be no particular shortage of labor. We anticipate seasonal shortages of agri- 
cultural workers, and that, on account of transportation problems, surplus labor 
in Memphis will be handicapped in reaching plantations where they will be needed. 

Daily referrals of cotton 'pickers 


of trucks 

of cotton 


of trucks 

of cotton 

















19 . 




21, Sunday. 


7, Sunday. 


12, 751 


24 . 







28, Sunday. 

13 . 

14, Sunday. 

30 . 

11, 514 


Total for month 





Exhibit 8. — Statement by C. F. Anderson, Director for Alabama, 
United States Employment Service, Montgomery, Ala. 

The Labor Market in Alabama Since June 1940 
i. general characteristics and recent expansion 

Excepting for the iron- and steel-producing Birmingham district, Alabama has 
always been predominately agricultural. Recently imposed upon this agricultural 
pattern, however, has been a war economy whose keynotes are new war facilities, 
new industries, and expansion of old industries. These have had far-reaching 
effects upon the State's life, and will exert an even greater future influence. 

Skyrocketing employment can best be illustrated currently by the following 


Type of industry 







over June 



281, 375 

395, 480 

427, 500 


Mining and quarrying 


16, 053 
143, 681 
17, 785 
51, 122 

36, 154 
53, 028 
197, 288 
63, 055 
17, 934 

38, 000 
55, 000 
220, 000 
22, 500 
66, 000 

+242. 6 


Even these figures of spectacular increase are essentially an understatement of 
the volume of employment since they do not include workers employed by govern- 
ment, interstate railways, and a number of small employers. 

Indicated nevertheless is an over-all increase in nonagricultural employment of 
40.5 percent between June of 1940 and September of 1941 and an estimated 
51.8 percent between June of 1940 and February of 1942. 

Virtually every phase of the State's industry has expanded since 1940, but 
expansion has been particularly pronounced in the field of construction, wherein 
employment has tripled. New factories, Army cantonments, air fields, and air- 
training schools, and similar building have been primarily responsible for this. 
(For the detail of these contracts, see table I.) 

The expansion in manufacturing of 53.1 percent entails an increase of approxi- 
mately 80,000 workers. The more important industries entering into this increase 
are the manufacture of chemicals and allied auxiliary activities, saw-milling, 
manufacture of textile products, manufacture of iron and steel and their products, 
shipbuilding, and the manufacture of aluminum. (For the detail of production 
contracts, see table II.) 

The increase of 20.5 percent in mining and quarrying is almost entirely attrib- 
utable to expansion and/or greater production in the iron and steel industry. 
The majority of the large mines are of the captive type, feeding their coal and ore 
directly into the steel mills. The large independent units either sell most of their 
products direct to the same industry or produce coke which is used by the industry. 


An analysis of a few specific industries in the field of manufacturing indicated 
to this department an increased labor demand exceeding 12,000 workers during 
the first 6 months of 1942. Recent events would tend to indicate that this fore- 
cast is definitely upon the conservative side. This figure for the first 6 months 
of 1942 can furthermore be doubled or tripled by including demand from Govern- 
ment plants and repair bases and from industries not included in the forecast. 
Nor will the peak of expansion have been reached by midsummer. The greater 
portion of the demand necessitates some degree of skill, and that can only be 
developed by training. 


Demands of selective service are exerting a heavy drain upon the labor market, 
but its impact is not subject to quantitative measurement (as something of a 
military secret). Industry will be faced with a replacement problem of significant 
degree. The present reaction on the part of employers is to hire older workers, 
workers with some claim to deferment, and women — thus keeping clear of "draft 
vulnerables" excepting in unskilled occupations. Attitudes range variously be- 
tween expressed optimism and unmitigated pessimism upon the question of defer- 
ments for workers now employed. 

Thus far agriculture has been adversely affected by the lure of opportunity in 
construction and industry and by selective service, which, however, has recently 
adopted "a policy of deferring essential managers and laborers where their services 
are required to produce food for the Nation." This shortage is further aggra- 
vated by increased crop acreages. 


The defense program has created areas of heavy labor demand into which 
workers have fed from other parts of the State and from neighboring States. 
Those areas can be briefly described as follows : 

A. The Muscle Shoals area. 

Located upon the outskirts of Sheffield, companies for the manufacture of 
ferrosilicon (for toughening steel) and alumina and aluminum products have 
built their plants within the past 18 months and are currently using an approxi- 
mate 3,000 workers in operations. The area will also produce synthetic am- 
monium and ammonium nitrates, using about 800 workers in those productive 
operations. Thus essential defense production has or will shortly have created 
about 3,800 jobs in the Muscle Shoals area. 

Rumors of further expansion are current. If rumor materializes into fact, a 
probable minimum of 1,000 additional jobs will be opened in production. 

B. The Huntsville area. 

This has been essentially an agricultural and secondarily a textile manufac- 
turing area. The building of a chemical warfare plant, and auxiliary facilities will 
probably necessitate a work force of between 9,000 and 10,000 people, which might 
again be increased by further expansion if such should materialize. 

C. The Gadsden area. 

In expansion of steel-manufacturing and shell-machining facilities, the defense 
program will result in approximately 2,000 new jobs. 

D. The Birmingham area. 

Expansion of output of iron and steel (including basic raw materials) and of 
the processing of steel products have added some thousands of production work- 
ers in this area. 

E. The Childersburg area. 

The building of munitions plants, bag-loading plants, and storage facilities will 
afford employment to approximately 13,500 production and auxiliary workers by 
the time construction is completed later in 1942. 

F. The Mobile area. 

The city of Mobile has been essentially interested in paper manufacturing, 
shipping, and ship repairing. The defense program has brought a new ship- 
building industry, a huge Army airplane repair base, and minor expansion in 
other industries. Jobs added by the two industries mentioned will add a con- 
servative 28,000 workers between June of 1940 and the end of 1942. About 
one-half of these hirings are probably still to be made. 


A. The available supply of labor. 

Alabama's crying need is for skilled workers, and to a lesser degree for unskilled 
workers, in defense production. It may appear somewhat paradoxical that this 
condition should exist with 87,946 men and women registered for jobs with the 
Employment Service (115,237 in June 1940), but the explanation is not difficult. 


During the long depression of the 1930's skilled operators were no longer employed 
where their skills could be utilized. During that period their skills became lost, 
and many of the workers themselves became superannuated from the industrial 
standpoint. At the same time the supply of skilled workers actually or potentially 
exceeded the demand for them, so new workers were not trained in those occupa- 
tions which are now so essential and also nonexistent upon the supply side of the 
labor market. 

Hitting a labor market which had become semistagnant, the defense program 
calls for skills in production never existing in the State or never existing in suffi- 
cient numbers to meet today's demand. It is significant, however, that there has 
been no real or apparent shortage in construction skills. 

Efforts of industry and of government in this situation of relatively abundant 
unskilled labor and scarce skilled labor have been in the direction of upgrading, 
job dilution, and training (both vocational or outside training and on-the-job 
training). Job dilution and upgrading have been widely utilized in most indus- 
tries, so it appears that training must necessarily be the future avenue of approach 
to a major degree. 

In 1941 the vocational defense training program made rapid strides forward 
in the field of preemployment training, during which time 1,293 trainees found 
employment. By the end of the year between 250 and 300 graduate trainees 
were monthly being fed into industry. The volume of supplementary training 
(aimed at development of greater skill on the existing job) was also great. Plans 
are under way to effect a tripling of preemployment training. 

In an effort to secure maximum utilization of the potential work force, directive 
orders have been issued to the effect that neither race, sex, color, nor creed shall 
result in a denial to admission to training classes where the applicant shows any 

B. Migration of labor. 

People have shifted around during the period since June of 1940 in considerable 
numbers, but it is not possible to derive any quantitative estimate of migration. 
In all cases the meccas of the wanderers have been the cities or areas of defense 
activity. Their origins have been the small towns and the farms. The chief 
focal points of in-migration have been Birmingham, Childersburg, Mobile, Shef- 
field, and Huntsville. 

Construction workers, due to the very nature of their work, have moved from 
place to place as construction at one point has been completed and construction 
begun at another. Workers for permanent operation of war| industries have been 
recruited from the local and commuting areas to the maximum possible degree, 
but growing shortage of local labor has resulted in substantial migration into 

C. Housing and related problems. 

The housing problem has been extremely serious in most of the defense areas 
during construction. Barracks and trailer camps have flourished, sometimes with 
such meager sanitary facilities that the absence of disease has been remarkable. 
In the Clu'ldersburg area school busses were used as classrooms. 

This has necessairly resulted since' the large defense projects (excepting Mobile) 
have been built in or near small towns in agricultural areas entirely unable to 
absorb a transient population. Now beginning is a new army cantonment at 
Daleville in southern Alabama. About 18,000 workers will be employed on the 
job, with only the local farm residents being assured of living quarters. The 
schedule calls for completion in 120 working days. The provision of living 
quarters is immediately necessary. 

Staffing of plants for production has had to concern itself with the same lack 
or inadequacy of housing and allied facilities. The building of dwelling units 
by both private interests and the Government has taken the edge off the shortage 
in most localities. In Mobile, however, it is doubtful that the shipyards will be 
able to secure their needed workers unless some provision is made for shelter. 
The saturation point of three shifts to a single bed has already been attained. 
Major building of housing units or barrack-type dwelling places is imperative 
now. Thousands are needed. 


D. Wage differentiations. 

To the best knowledge of this department no significant wage differentials exist 
in the State between occupations excepting minor ones between geographical 
areas due to the normal bidding for labor in a competitive market. Axiomatically 
also, hazardous occupations pay more than the less hazardous. 

Between industries significant differentials do exist. Between textiles and 
shipbuilding, as an example, the differential for skilled workers for a standard 
40-hour week varies between $17 and $22, in favor of the latter. Between 
powder manufacture and shipbuilding the same differential would be about $15 
weekly in favor of the former. Such variations are inherent within the nature 
of industry, and can only raise the presumption that labor will tend to move to 
the best-paying job available if such differentials exist in a community. If 
differentials exist between communities, such a tendency is partially curtailed 
by the lack of mobility of labor. 


To summarize, expanding industry has absorbed all skilled workers in many 
occupations since June 1940 and has absorbed the labor supply in most of the 
remaining skills to the point that most of the unemploj r ed may be considered as 
marginal or submarginal under normal conditions. From this group and from new 
or secondary workers must come replacements for the normal industrial work 
forces as well as the new workers for the rapid expansion of war industries. Some 
displacement resulting from priorities and curtailment orders will add to this 
force of available workers, but will not be sufficient to meet the demand that will 
come with contemplated war production. Selective Service will also make heavy 
inroads into the State's labor supply and this will call for a heavy increase in produc- 
tion workers from other sources. 

It is true that many workers have come into the State in search of work in war 
industries, but the migration problem cannot be regarded as a serious one in Ala- 
bama. The clearance procedure of the United States Employment Service has 
been utilized to prevent uncontrolled migration and it may be stated that these 
efforts, generally speaking, have been successful. Our investigations and reports 
indicate that a far greater number of workers have come into Alabama to take 
defense jobs than have gone from the State in search of jobs in other States. 

There has been a heavy exodus of workers from the farms to construction jobs 
and factories. This is expected to present a serious problem on the farms of 
Alabama this year. With expanding acreage of many farm crops, it is doubtful 
that farm labor will be adequate in 1942. Mechanical equipment cannot be pro- 
vided fast enough to solve the shortage which is recognized as serious by all agen- 
cies dealing with the problem. The United States Employment Servicers putting 
into operation a definite program which is intended to utilize to the fullest extent 
all sources of labor which are available for farm work, including over-age persons, 
women and children. In its planning, the Employment Service is in close collabo- 
ration with farm agencies, such as the United States Agricultural Extension Service, 
State department of agriculture, Farm Security Administration and Alabama 
Farm Bureau Federation. 

The ever-expanding program of vocational training will aid greatly in supplying 
workers needed in industry in Alabama. 

Inadequate housing presents the big problem in many of the centers of war 
production in Alabama. It is the cause of much discontent among workers who 
are being recruited for the war effort. It has resulted in the loss of many workers 
who have come into the State's war production centers, have been unable to find 
houses in which to live, and have moved to other sections in search of jobs which 
will be within reasonable distance from adequate housing. The importance of 
adequate housing is further emphasized at this time by the serious rubber situa- 
tion. Many persons who have been able to commute many miles from their 
homes to their jobs will be unable to do so in the future because of lack of tires. 

Adequate housing, in our opinion, would be of great importance in solving the 
problem of migration as well as the problem of obtaining an adequate supply of 
skilled workers to man the war production machines. 


Appendix I. Major Construction Contracts 

To the best of our knowledge, table I contains the construction contracts 
awarded in Alabama. Excluded is the detail of construction under treasury 
certificates of necessity, although there is definite knowledge that these have been 
issued to an amount exceeding $27,000,000. 

Table I. — Major construction contracts in Alabama 



Airfields and 
facilities ' 

Army can- 
tonments i 

Housing * 



neous » 


$9, 029 

$152, 832. 00 

55, 269- 

33, 360 

391, 784. 00 
881, 065. 00 

158, 313. 00 
66, 980. 00 

1, 928, 008. 00 
458, 455. 50 

2, 144, 612. 70 

6, 310, 346. 50 

1, 338, 405. 52 
169, 187. 61 
558, 983. 42 

49, 737 

$15, 761. 00 

$499, 995 

$6, 500, 000 

162, 808 
72, 853 



$56, 488, 592 
22, 830, 817 

410, 857 
903, 177 

2, 515, 042 

$1, 322, 500 

70, 740. 00 

25, 601, 211 

15, 226 

195, 518. 00 
405, 760. 00 
184, 462. 00 
345, 275. 00 
95, 346. 80 
145, 688. 00 
189, 682. 00 
( 6 ) 

( 6 ) 

65, 584 


36, 397, 399 
29, 000, 000 
4, 606, 000 

290, 000 
155, 969 
898, 831 
263, 423 

5, 010, 000 

< 2, 645, 000 



( 6 ) 
547, 500 





149, 322, 80S 

15, 881, 300. 25 

1, 648, 232. 80 

8, 202, 305 

8, 977, 500 

34, 897, 290 

463, 866 

Grand total, $219,393,302.25. 

i Includes some housing facilities. 

2 Substantially all earmarked for military or defense plant usage. 

3 Primarily expended on post offices, flood control, dredging, and highways. 

4 Estimated from cost of previous ways. 

5 Not available. 

6 Camp at Ozark (Daleville), Ala., for 30,000 men; no cost estimates available. 

Note.— Included under ordnance is a grant of $14,091,000 for cost of equipment and $13,303,001 for opera- 



Appendix II. Major Production Contracts 

To the best of our knowledge, table II contains production contracts thus far 
awarded to Alabama firms. 

Table II. — Defense production contracts in Alabama 

Type of activity 



and prod- 
ucts of 



and other 
products of 
iron and steel 



$715, 004. 90 
214, 763. 25 

87, 125. 00 

738, 281. 98 

1. 566. 884. 63 

172, 933, 55 

251, 558. 74 

1. 573, 765. 00 

1, 113, 706. 50 

1, 121, 260. 77 

902, 636. 60 

1, 065, 597. 50 

982, 555. 07 

52, 582. 00 

327, 160. 02 

$36, 170. 00 
132, 957. 00 

127, 299. 80 
21, 637. 50 
78, 339. 86 
3, 277. 00 

$1, 013, 775. 00 

239, 348. 00 

525, 880. 00 

$27, 510. 00 


11, 060. 42 




215, 364. 66 
251, 736. 15 

12, 532. 60 
235, 550. 50 
561, 370. 00 

24, 599. 17 

21, 319. 14 

72, 323. 04 

11, 204. CO 



3, 610. 00 


31, 360. 00 


155, 098. 80 
7, 047, 200. 00 
694, 572. 00 
271, 260. 00 
83, 993. 25 


35, 280, 000 
18, 960, 000 

176, 757. 44 

32, 959. 25 

339, 801. 00 

21, 493. 50 
49, 500. 00 

162, 019. 70 

64, 846. 56 


i 70, 560, 000 


2, 702, 784. 00 

68, 838. 00 


Grand total. 
$173, 521, 625. 73 


474, 284. 66 

11, 185, 736. 55 

144, 349, 880 

5, 267, 486. 18 

1, 047, 022. 83 

Estimated on basis of previous contracts. 

Appendix III 

The following series of charts shows the employment levels of various types of 
industry since June of 1940. These figures are secured from social security 
reports, and exclude noncovered employment. The period beginning October 
1941, and extending through February 1942, is estimated upon the basis of as 
yet incomplete reports. 



Chart I. — Employment in all Industries, Alabama, June 1940- 
February 1942 



b ii d j p 




Chart II. — Employment in Mining and Quarrying Industries, 
Alabama, June 1940-February 1942 








Chart III. — Employment in Construction Industries, Alabama, 
June 1940-February 1942 





-Employment In Manufacturing Industries, Alabama, 
June 1940-February 1942 

J J A 

J F If 


60396—42 — pt. 32- 



Chart V. — Employment in Transportation, Communication, and 
Utilities Industries, Alabama, June 1940-February 1942 



Chart VI. — Employment in Trade Industries, Alabama, June 
1940-February 1942 




-£ 50 



i uo 




i 1 1 1 1 1 - 

J J A S N D 



N D J F 



Chart VIIb. — Employment in Finance, Insurance, and Real 
Estate Industries, Alabama, June 1940-February 1942 


-2 io 

"> — ' — r 

N J 


J J A S 


J F U 

•Chart VIIa. — Employment nrt Service Industries, Alabama, 
June 1940-February 1942 



J J A S 6 N 


1 1 1- 

J F M 

U J 



Exhibit 9. — Statement by A. H. Collins, State Superintendent 
of Education, State of Alabama 

In December 1940, the Alabama State Education Department received a 
communication dated November 30, 1940, in which it was pointed out that in 
accordance with the Seventy-sixth Congress, third seassion, Senate Resolution 324, 
the Secretary of the Navy and the Secretary of War had filed requests with the 
Federal Security Agency for the United States Office of Education to make a 
study of additional school facilities needed in the national defense areas because 
of the influx of school population. At that time, the United States Office of 
Education sent forms and instructions for making such a survey in Alabama. 

On December 14, 1940, the Alabama State Education Department forwarded 
to the United States Office of Education surveys of the additional educational 
facilities needed at that time in Alabama because of the influx of school population 
in national defense areas. This survey included the following defense areas: 
Anniston (Fort McClellan), Mobile (shipbuilding and air depot), Gadsden (Shell 
plant), Birmingham area (steel and related companies), Selma (Craig Field), 
Sheffield (aluminum plant), Montgomery (Maxwell and Gunter Fields). At that 
time, an increase of 5,992 additional pupils was estimated in the school systems 
in those areas. The survey showed that the school systems affected were not 
financially able to provide the additional facilities. It was pointed out in this- 
study that any expansion of national defense activities would cause an increase in 
school population and a greater need for additional school facilities. Since the 
December 1940 survey, the Childersburg-Talladega area, the Ozark-Dothan area, 
the Tuskegee area, Phenix City area, and the Huntsville area have developed as 
centers of national defense programs. Moreover, in the Birmingham area and in 
the Mobile area defense activities have expanded. As additional needs de- 
veloped, due to expansion of defense programs, estimates of additional needs were 
forwarded to the United States Office of Education. 

After the passage of the Lanham Act, Public Act 137, members of the Alabama 
State Education Department, as consultants, assisted local school administrative 
units in making applications for Federal aid to provide additional school facilities 
which neither the State nor the local unit could provide, where needed due to 
influx of school population in national defense areas in the State. At first, it 
was difficult to secure application forms and instructions for making applications 
for maintenance and operation. In the beginning, the personnel of the regional 
office of the Public Works Administration discouraged applications for main- 
tenance and operation funds and provided no forms or procedures for making such 
applications but provided applications for Federal aid for school building con- 
struction for the same school systems. To date, this office has received notice of 
approval of statements of purpose for expenditure of grants received for main- 
tenance and operation for only 2 school systems out of 21 local school systems 
having additional pupils because of the defense program and applying for main- 
tenance and operation grants. School officials, in the absence of approval of cer- 
tificates of purpose, are in a quandary as to how to proceed to relieve overcrowded 
conditions. Schools opened in this State in September 1941, but no school official 
had any approved plan or procedure for relieving overcrowded classrooms in 
national defense areas before February 1942. It is realized that school building 
construction requires some time, but overcrowding could have been relieved 
partially on a temporary basis through the use of churches, rented rooms, or 
double sessions in cities, if funds could have been received and procedures approved 
for payment of additional teachers and other current operating expenses. 

Regional public works officials have insisted that local school systems match- 
Federal grants through the issuance and sale of school warrants of indebtedness 
even though the annual payments of such debt service would result in shortening 
the school term. Most of the Alabama boards of education incurred almost 
maximum debt service in the school building program in which Public Works 
Administration grants were given in the period 1935-39, inclusive. A recent 
State-wide survey shows that Alabama school systems need 7,883 classrooms and 
that the cost of the construction of such classrooms on the basis of 1936-37 costs 
would be $21,000,000. The insistence that local school boards match Federal 
grants has worked a hardship in this State. 


Surveys to date indicate that in 11 national defense areas affecting 27 local 
school administrative units there has been an increase of over 11,500 pupils whose 
parents have moved to the areas since June 30, 1940, and are engaged in national 


defense activities. Over 60 percent of the increase in pupil enrollment due to 
national defense activities is in the elementary grades 1 to 6, inclusive. Part 
of the increase is due to migration within the State and part of the migration is 
from pupils moving from other States to Alabama. The migration within the 
State to the national defense areas has been widely dispersed over the State. 
Local school systems outside of the national defense areas have lost school popula- 
tion due to migration of families to defense areas, but the loss has been scattered 
throughout the schools and the grades within the schools in such a manner as to 
make it impossible for the local school systems to reduce their public school 


The relationship of the State department of education to the various county 
and municipal education departments is that of general administration and 
supervision of the State public school system and of providing consultative and 
advisory services to school officials throughout the State. The State department 
of education, in cooperation with state institutions of higher learning, directs 
comprehensive educational surveys of county and city school systems. In these 
surveys, long-time plans for school building construction, for location of school 
centers, and for the financing of public schools are made. State and local school 
funds can be expended for school building construction only at school centers 
recommended as future school centers by the surveys. State minimum standards 
are prescribed and followed in the purchase of school busses by local school units. 

Through office and field directors and supervisors, consultative and advisory 
services are rendered to local school officials on general and specific instructional 
programs, on vocational education, on civilian rehabilitation, on remedial work 
with handicapped children, and on national defense training programs. 

The State department of education administers the apportionment of State 
school funds and Federal school funds allocated to the State, to local school sys- 
tems. Local school administrative units are required by law to have the approval 
of the State superintendent of education for the issuance of the sale of school 
warrants of indebtedness, i. e., school bonds, and the law specifies that the State 
superintendent of education cannot approve the incurrence of long-term indebted- 
ness which will jeopardize the minimum school program. The department assists 
local school officials in the sale of school warrants. Local school boards submit 
annual financial budgets of estimated receipts and expenditures for the approval 
of the State superintendent. The Alabama Public School Corporation, of which 
the State superintendent is a member, negotiates short-term loans pledging current 
State minimum program funds and apportions such loans to local school systems 
in a manner so as to provide funds for the payment of current operating expenses 
promptly, insofar as possible, and in addition local school administrative units are 
authorized to secure short-term loans pledging current revenues only. The State 
department of education provides uniform accounting and reporting forms, receives 
copies of monthly payrolls and financial statements of local school systems, receives 
annual statistical reports from local school systems, and from the local reports 
prepares statistical annual reports for the State public school system. 


Under the Constitution of Alabama, local school administrative units may levy 
and collect the following ad valorem taxes: 

(a) A county 1-mill tax, or 10 cents on each $100 of assessed valuation of 
property. This tax cannot be pledged for long-term indebtedness but must be 
epent for equalizing school terms within the county, insofar as possible; 

(b) Each county may levy a 3-mill tax, or 30 cents on each $100 of assessed 
valuation of property. This tax is levied for public school purposes and may be 
used for current operation and may be pledged for long-term indebtedness where 
the schedule of payment of such indebtedness does not jeopardize the State 
minimum program school term and is approved by the State superintendent of 
education. Moreover, this tax is county-wide and this presupposes its use over 
the entire county. Under existing laws, not more than 80 percent of the antici- 
pated proceeds from this tax can be pledged for the payment of long-term indebted- 

(c) Where the county levies the 3-mill county tax referred to in (b) above, 
each tax district within the county is authorized to levy a 3-mill district tax, or 
30 cents on each $100 of assessed valuation of property. This tax must be 


spent for school facilities for the district and may be pledged for the payment 
of long-term indebtedness in the manner stipulated in (b) above. 

The State minimum program law ' covers the proceeds from 5 of the 7 mills of 
taxes referred to above in the minimum program fund as part of the funds avail- 
able to meet the cost of the State minimum program school term, except that the 
amount of the required local contribution to the State minimum school program 
is now calculated by equating the sum of certain economic indices of local wealth 
with the proceeds of 5 mills of the local taxes. The economic index of the financial 
ability of each county, including cities therein, includes the following items: 
Sales tax paid, passenger automobile licenses paid, state personal income tax paid, 
assessed valuation of public utilities, farm income, and value added by manu- 

Three counties in the State have constitutional authority to levy specified 
ad valorem taxes for school purposes as follows: Baldwin County, 2 mills; Mobile 
County, 2 mills; Jefferson County, Y% mill. Three cities are authorized to levy 
special 3-mill taxes for schools: namely, Selma, Decatur, and Cullman. Nine 
other cities receive school revenue from special or general ad valorem taxes, 
according to the purpose for which the tax was voted or according to the disposi- 
tion of the regular city governing body. 

Local school boards may charge matriculation fees for pupils enrolled in 
accredited high schools but no fees can be charged to pupils enrolled in the public 
elementary school grades one to six, inclusive, during the school term supported 
by public taxes. 

Montgomery County levies and collects a 1-cent tax on each gallon of gasoline 
sold within the county. 

County boards of education may receive appropriations from county govern- 
ing bodies and city boards of education may receive appropriations from city 
governing bodies. School boards may receive donations and gifts. However, 
only very limited revenues have been received in recent years from any of the 
sources listed in this paragraph. 

State funds consist of the following: 

(a) Public school fund, totaling approximately $3,600,000, consists of the pro- 
ceeds from a State-wide 3-mill tax on property, a $500,000 appropriation from the 
general fund of the State, interest on sixteenth section land from the State general 
fund amounting to approximately $194,000 annually, fees and rentals in small 
amounts, and funds from the property tax relief fund, in an amount equal to the 
amount lost by homestead exemption. The 3-mill tax in the public school fund 
is specified by the Constitution of Alabama. The public school fund is appor- 
tioned on the basis of the number of children of ages 7 to 20, inclusive, within 
each county. 

(b) State educational trust fund: This fund is made up of the proceeds from 
sales taxes, tax on hydroelectric companies, on railroad companies, on iron ore, 
on coal tonnage, use tax, and other items which bring in small amounts. The 
educational trust fund is a consolidated fund consisting of the following funds 
apportionable to local school administrative units: 1. State minimum program 
fund of $8,005,016; 2 2. State revolving fund of $100,000; 3. free textbook fund 
of $200,000; 4. vocational education fund of $353,000. 

(c) In addition to the above funds, public schools receive the amounts paid in 
poll taxes each year, each county receiving the amount collected in said county. 

The State minimum program fund is apportioned as an equalization fund to 
each county. Whatever the county lacks, as measured by the equation of the 
economic index of wealth with the proceeds from 5 mills of ad valorem taxes, of 
having sufficient funds to meet the cost of "the State minimum program school 
term, calculated on a uniform basis, that amount is supplied by the State through 
State funds. In addition, the county has the proceeds from the poll tax and 
apportions the proceeds from 2 mills of county taxes to extend school terms 
beyond the State minimum program term. In general, only the high school is 
extended beyond the State minimum program term in county school systems and 
in a few counties funds have not been sufficient to operate accredited high schools 
for 9 months. In city school systems, the proceeds from the 3-mill school district 
tax are used as a measure of the ability of the city to support the State minimum 
program school term. Additional amounts over and above the 3-mill school dis- 
trict tax necessary to provide the State minimum program school term calculated 

' Title 52, art. Ill, sees. 208-215, Code of Alabama. 1940. 

' To this appropriation is added any unappropriated surplus in the State general fund over and above 
$1,150,000 and this surplus amounted to $957,000 for 1941-42. 


on a uniform basis, are provided by the county board of education through State 
and county funds. 


Alabama transports 59.1 percent of the pupils attending rural high schools, 
68.2 percent of rural white high school pupils, and 48.3 percent of all white pupils. 
For the year 1940-41, Alabama transported 224,239 pupils to and from public school 
daily in 3,313 school busses. School busses are needed in all counties including 
or adjacent to national defense plants, camps, forts, airfields, or projects. Sixteen 
school busses were purchased by Talladega County to transport the pupils who 
moved with their parents to that county since June 30, 1940, in order for the 
parents to work at the munition plants and at the bag loading plant. The Shelby 
County board of education purchased five school busses to transport children 
who along with their parents moved into Shelby County since June 30, 1940, in 
order for the parents to work in the munition plants adjacent to the county. 

If the school systems in this State fail to secure school busses and tires and 
parts of school busses, the rural school system will be wrecked. Failure to secure 
school busses will severely handicap educational opportunity of children in defense 
areas, along with other children throughout rural Alabama. This State is pre- 
dominantly rural, 75 percent of the children in the State of ages 6 to 20, inclusive, 
live in rural areas and in towns with total population of less than 2,500. 


The State minimum program school term for the year 1941-42 is set at 139 
actual teaching days, or lacking 1 da}' of being 28 weeks at 5 days per week. For 
the year 1940-41, the length of school term was as follows: 


High school, 







Attention is directed to the fact that the white pupils in Alabama have the 
shortest school term of any State in the Nation. The local school administrative 
units levy and collect all the taxes allowed under the State constitution, except 
for a combined total of less than $100,000, and cannot provide facilities for the 
influx of school population in national defense areas from local sources without 
further shortening the school term. The State has not made any provisions for 
the additional pupils in national defense areas and the regular session of the State 
legislature is not scheduled to meet until 1943. The State department of educa- 
tion has not closed the schools in any school system in the State and no specific 
authority is granted to the State board of education to close the schools at any 
time. However, the public schools of the State operate under the State budget 
law which requires local school boards to confine their financial obligations to 
anticipated and actual revenue receipts for current operation. Naturally, this 
means that schools can operate only so long as funds are available for current 
operation. Lack of school funds has- caused a few counties to operate high schools 
only 8 months. For example, in 1940-41, Clay County white elementary schools 
operated 135 days and the high schools operated only 138 days and Talladega 
County high schools were operated only 153 days. 

Local school boards employ attendance workers designated by law as attendance 
officers to secure regularity of school attendance during the school terms operated. 
The local school attendance workers in this State must be graduates of an approved 
standard college, must have had courses in social work and school attendance, 
and 3 years of experience in teaching or social work, or a combination. 


No individual can teach in the public schools of Alabama without a certificate 
issued by the State department of education under rules and regulations of the 
State board of education. Formerly, a minimum of 3 years of training above 
high school in an approved institution of higher learning was required for the 
issuance of a certificate to teach. In 1941-42, a shortage of teachers has occurred 
due to selective service and to resignations for higher salaries, and certification 



standards are lowered to a minimum of 1 year of approved college training. 
A recent study showed that since September 1, 1940, 23 percent of the white 
men teachers of Alabama had left the teaching profession. Over 1,200 white 
teachers quit teaching to enter military service or some other occupation from 
September 1, 1940, to October 1, 1941. Since July 1, 1940, 397 emergency and 
conditional certificates have been issued and a much larger number will have to 
be issued in the near future. 

Alabama has a single-salary schedule for allocating funds to school systems 
for salaries of teachers. The salary allocated to local school systems per teacher 
per month ranges from a minimum of $40 for the lowest trained teacher to $135 
for the highest trained teacher. Local school boards have authority to pay 
higher salaries than the State allocation salaries, insofar as available local funds 
will permit. The average annual salaries for 1939-40, the most recent State- 
wide tabulation, were: Elementary teachers $588; high school teachers $984. 
In general, high school teachers have higher training and teach longer school 

Exhibit 10. — Statement by B. F. Austin, M. D., Acting State 
Health Officer, Department of Public Health, Mongtomery, 

Health Facilities Available in Alabama 

1. By statute, the State Department of Health of Alabama is vested with broad 
police powers. There are no references in the Constitution of the State to public 
health. The governing body of the department has statutory authority to adopt 
rules and regulations, which rules and regulations have the force and effect of law. 

2. Each county health department is under the immediate supervision of a 
county board of health, which serves under the direction of the State Department 
of Health. In the event a county board of health fails or refuses to discharge its 
responsibilities as set forth in the statutes, the State Department of Health may 
exercise the functions of the county board of health in the jurisdiction concerned. 

3. Each of the county health departments likely to be involved in defense 
migration operates under a cooperative budget contributed to by the Federal Gov- 
ernment, the State, and local governmental agencies. Since the initiation of the 
defense program, supplementary United States Public Health Service personnel 
has been furnished certain of the counties involved, as follows: 

Calhoun, 1 nurse. 

Dale, 2 engineers. 

Dallas, 1 nurse. 

Jefferson, 1 white physician, 1 Negro physician, 1 engineer, and I veterinarian. 

Madison, 1 nurse. 

Mobile, 2 engineers. 

Montgomery, 1 Negro physician, 1 engineer. 

Talladega, 1 nurse, 1 engineer. 

Request has been made of the United States Public Health Service for a nurse 
and an engineer for Colbert County. 

4. In all the counties embraced in thi& report clinical services are furnished with- 
out cost by the State department of health in the fields of maternal and child 
health, the venereal diseases and tuberculosis. 

5. In personnel the picture by counties is as follows: 


























With the exception of Jefferson, there has been no appreciable loss of personnel 
in this group of counties. What the future will bring is a matter of conjecture 
and concerning which no opinion can be expressed at this time. As occasion 
demands the State department of health asks for deferment for key people but its 
efforts in this connection have been partially successful only. 

In per capita expenditures for public health and in personnel, the 1 1 counties 
under discussion compare favorably with the country as a whole. With only 
slight increases in numbers available for nursing and sanitation duties, it is 
believed any problem presenting can be handled satisfactory and with expendition. 

Exhibit 11. — Statement by Loula Dunn, Commissioner of Public 
Welfare, State of Alabama, Montgomery, Ala. 

The public-welfare problems created in Alabama by migration of people to 
industrial centers, as well as the readjustments necessitated by the shift to a war 
economy, were recounted briefly in the statement filed with the committee in 
January of this year. 1 Since that time, however, the tempo of war has altered still 
further the complexion of the State, with projects scattered from Muscle Shoals in 
the extreme North to Mobile on the Gulf coast. While some progress has been 
made in attacking the problems created, it has not been possible to provide facili- 
ties to keep pace with the expansion of plants and the raising of production goals 
in the critical areas. The following information, therefore, is intended to bring 
up to date that included in the January testimony, and to point to trends which 
are now more clearlv indicated. 

Likewise, this material is in supplement to that submitted by Mrs. Walter 
Humphrey, Madison County Director of Public Welfare, who testified in Hunts- 
ville as to the welfare problems of that area. While the Huntsville picture reflects 
conditions throughout the State, difficulties vary considerably in the different local- 
ities. (One illustration of this may be found in the attached article, The Powder 
Mill Town, which describes what has happened in Childersburg as a result of the 
construction of the Alabama Ordnance Works.) 2 It is apparent, too, that the 
ability of an area to meet change, to absorb new population, and to provide needed 
facilities is dependent upon such factors as its size, its wealth, and the degree to 
which it was already industrialized. The following summary does not delineate 
in detail the many public welfare problems of defense areas, but gives emphasis to 
certain needs which have become of paramount concern since the January brief 
was filed with the committee. 

While progress has been made since that date in the development of community 
facilities for housing, education, health, and recreation, the gains have been largely 
offset by further population increases resulting from orders to "double output" 
and "triple capacity" in almost every individual factory, ordnance plant, and 
shipvard. In one area 6 months ago 600 new houses seemed to be the maximum 
that' would be needed; today 1,200 more would not fill the need. Executives in 
war industries have frequently pointed out that they are unable to step up pro- 
duction of materiel because there is no place for additional workers to live nor 
any means of reducing congestion among those already employed. Thus, serious 
social problems are created and productive efficiency is reduced. 

In Mobile, for example, shipyards, though ready to increase their capacity, 
cannot do so until satisfactory houses can be erected in the vicinity for the workers. 
In other sections of the State, where commuting from nearby towns has lessened 
the housing problem, further crowding is likely because of the rationing of tires, 
cars, and gasoline. Labor turnover due to congested and inadequate housing is 
likewise causing a lowering of efficiency among the workmen important to the 
Nation's productivity. These workers will not stay on the job when they are 
forced to sleep on "hot beds," eat in unsanitary restaurants where they wait in 
line for a table, pay exhorbitant prices, and at the same time support a family 
in another town. It is imperative, therefore, if war production goals are to be 
reached, that decent living conditions be made available for workers in these 
industrial areas — and that such facilities be provided without further delay. 

In addition to the problems of crowded living, new difficulties and new emer- 
gencies have arisen during the past 6 months which are of direct concern to public- 
welfare agencies. The expansion of the armed forces is drawing larger and larger 
numbers of men from civilian life and will reach further into the group with 
dependents. Alabama, with its vast number of voluntary enlistments, is already 

i See pt. 25, p. 9802. 
« P. 12204. 


aware of what happens when the head of a family goes to war. Even though it 
is hoped that pending legislation will soon be enacted to provide dependents' 
allowances for soldiers, financial assistance is never the whole answer to family 

With the rapid mobilization of the armed forces, with the acceleration of war 
production, and with the necessity of maintaining essential civilian services, it 
becomes obvious that the decision as to where any individual should serve will be 
based more and more on his place of maximum usefulness and less and less on his 
usual, peacetime family obligations. This is illustrated by the growing demands 
for employment of women in the various industries of Alabama where before 
1940 only the textile mills had many women employees. At that time there 
were 25,000 women in the cotton and silk industries of the State. Now, according 
to these employers, the trend is to replace men with women, even to the extent 
that many jobs formerly held exclusively by men are now being performed 
satisfactorily by women. Some recently established war plants have consistently 
given preference to women applicants for work, while other new privately owned 
factories have followed the same practice. These new employment opportunities 
for women will obviously increase during the next few months, since 50 percent 
of the State's male population is within the age group included under selective 
service regulations. 

The question, then, is not whether more women should be employed but rather 
how the needs of their children will be met when they are employed. Few of 
the areas highly affected by war industries have adequate public or private facili- 
ties for day care of children. The need for such facilities, therefore, is apparent. 
Today these new work opportunities can be utilized only by those mothers who 
have relatives or older members of their immediate households in a position to 
assume responsibility for their children. Those who seek domestic help are 
finding considerable difficulty, for, even the families able to pay high wages can 
seldom secure satisfactory servants. Some of the mothers are forced to reject 
employment or to quit work after a brief time because of unsatisfactory arrange- 
ments for their children. Girls as young as 10 or 12 must now take full charge 
of their younger brothers and sisters if their mothers are to go into industry. 
School-age children are also being left completely without supervision in the 
afternoons. These problems faced by the mothers of school-age children are 
more acute with the beginning of the vacation months. The recreational needs 
of these older children in the congested centers are evident even when the mothers 
are not employed— for congested living leaves no place for play. As more women 
must be drawn from the potential labor market, both to replace men in the 
armed forces and to perform jobs for which they are particularly well adapted, 
more public resources must be developed for the care of children. 

No single community can meet these problems alone. Though some Federal 
aid is available to localities under provisions of the Lanham Act, the amount is 
insufficient for even the most pressing needs. It is hoped that additional Federal 
assistance can be provided to develop adequate day care facilities and to strenghen 
existing child-welfare services. In Alabama the State department of public 
welfare, in accordance with already existing legislation, has responsibility for 
establishing standards for day-care centers and for issuing licenses to such centers 
established as independent units apart from the schools. The standards which 
have been developed are flexible enough to be adapted to each local situation, 
and are in line with the report on standards for day care for children of working 
mothers authorized by the United States Children's Bureau. Likewise, the 
department of public welfare, in cooperation with the Department of Education, 
has appointed a State-wide advisory committee to work in conjunction with both 
the departments toward the development and standardization of day-care centers. 
Surveys begun in strategic areas of the State have proved the urgent need for 
prompt action, but in proceeding thus far with plans it has become evident that 
there must be clarification of areas of responsibility and more definite lines of 
procedure from the Federal agencies. 

Second in importance to the development of day care facilities — if war produc- 
tion is to utilize all available manpower and womanpower— is that of organizing 
recreational programs for older boys and girls. It has been found that juvenile 
delinquency varies in inverse ratio to the recreation facilities available, and that 
the greatest number of offenders are in the crowded industrial centers where 
supervision is lacking and play space nonexistent. 

Child labor, too, is rampant wherever adult labor is in demand. Children are 
often employed both on the farms and in the cities to do work formerly handled 
by unskilled people. Their hours are long, their earnings poor, and, though 


infractions are frequent, authorities are finding it difficult to enforce the provisions 
of the child-labor law. 

Just as the needs of children are underlined by crowded living, so the needs of all 
people who cannot provide for themselves are thrown into sharp relief. Mothers 
with young children who might be physically able to work cannot yet do so because 
of the lack of day -care facilities for their children. Job opportunities are becoming 
more widespread, but the families receiving public assistance in Alabama, with the 
exception of some parents with dependent children, are unemployable by reason 
of age, blindness, or some other handicap. Instead of benefiting as a whole from 
the upturn in business, therefore, these disadvantaged groups with low and 
unstable incomes are finding that their small public-assistance grants or other 
sources of livelihood buy less and less. Even though within limited available 
funds there has been an attempt to make grants compatible with living costs, they 
have not absorbed the difference between the value of the dollar a year ago and 
what it will buy today. Likewise, surplus commodities — the only supplement 
available to these low grants — have decreased in quantity and variety. 

The proposed amendments to the Social Security Act to provide Federal 
matching of general relief and variable grants to states according to ability to pay 
would in some measure alleviate this suffering among the needy people in Alabama. 
Likewise, such legislation would aid in providing for that segment of the population 
which has come into the State to secure work and will be stranded when con- 
struction levels off and the unskilled laborers who now have work again find 
themselves with "nothing to do." 

Because war demands the maximum capabilities of every citizen, those indi- 
viduals who through no fault of their own are not productive must be aided by 
their government in order that they may make a useful contribution to the war 
program. In such proportion as they receive the help they need will they become 
assets instead of liabilities to the democracy which we are attempting to preserve. 
Community facilities, strengthened by assistance to individuals in need, must be 
developed and expanded through the utilization of every local, State, and Federal 


Lottla Friend Dunn 

childersburg, a complacent community 

Until December 1940 Childersburg's 500 inhabitants were indifferent to the 
outsiders who drove on the Birmingham-Florida Highway within a quarter mile 
of the village or who rode the streamlined trains which passed through the town 
daily between northern cities and southern resorts. Its citizens had no interest 
in these travelers and, likewise, the passers-by were scarcely aware of the little 
community's existence. 

In its self-sufficiency, however, Childersburg was neither outstanding nor 
peculiar, but was typical of thousands of small towns scattered over the length 
and breadth of the Nation. Its chief claim to fame was the monument stating 
that "Two miles north of this spot the Indian town of Cosa was visited by DeSoto, 
July 10, 1540." 

The residents of the locality were content with their way of living and felt no 
decided hardships because their village lacked a bank, a hotel, and a motion- 
picture theater. Neither did they have any objection to the mayor's operating a 
drug store, as well as doing official town business. After all, the responsibilities 
attached to this position could be handled satisfactorily from headquarters at 
the drug store, supplemented by occasional visits to the town hall. 

It was, in fact, around the stove in the town hall that most of the local trans- 
actions were weighed, discussed, and finally brought to completion. This small 
one-room brick building, erected about 60 years ago as a saloon and converted for 
public use when prohibition became local law in the early 1900's, also housed 
the chamber of commerce and the presiding justice of the peace, served as police 
Tieadquarters, and had space in the rear for the two cells which comprised the 
town's jail. Thus the town hall was realistically the center of government in 
the village. 

i From The Journal of Educational Sociology, April 1942. 


The residents expected to remain there. They were, for the most part farmers 
or tradesmen whose fathers and grandfathers had made their homes in the com- 
1 ^-} 1 } y - u Vacant houses were unheard of, because new people seldom came to 
Childersburg, and no new residences were likely to be needed. At least no 
demand for them was anticipated prior to the time the Government annouAced 
that it would spend approximately $80,000,000 on a powder plant just outside 
the town limits. 

It was then that war came to Childersburg. If there had been no program of 
national defense to prepare for the present conflict, the village might still be 
aware only from its youth who entered the armed forces and from newspaper 
headlines and radio programs that the United States was an active participant in 
the war. Instead, the whole complexion of the town became colored bv the 
world emergency as early as December 1940. 


The citizens were electrified by the news. They were somewhat surprised, too 

to learn that adequate rail facilities, water supply, and available labor were among 

the more important factors responsible for selection of the plant site Cries of 

boom town, ghost town," and "beware of speculators" were heard on all 

sides, while predictions of prosperity were equaled by those of dire distress 

The entire aspect of the village was completely altered by the time the news 
became public knowledge. The unpaved streets were jammed with cars ob- 
viously those of nonresidents. Real-estate signs appeared on every hand 'with 
remodeling and building going on in all quarters. The citizens were scarcely 
aware, however, that an era had passed. Childersburg was no longer Childers- 

Although residents could not immediately change their attitudes and their waw 
?l e '- Q Z g radu .aUy began to realize they could not retain their former customs 
or their old serenity. Accommodations were being put into shape for boarding' 
and lodging the newcomers who were already flooding the town, even though the 
boundaries for the project had not yet been surveyed. The old-timers con- 
sequently could not ignore what was happening around them, because it had'made 
them residents of a nationally important industrial area instead of citizens of a< 
quiet village, important only unto itself. The community was no more unwillin- 
than any similar community would have been to accept the inevitable but such* 
drastic transformation is not without its difficulties. 

Since these difficulties were due to the National Government's reaching into 
the village and naming it a defense center, that Government, in making the 
choice, obligated itself to help provide much needed community facilities ''Our 
resources are inadequate and the emergency is serious," the mayor wired the 
Governor soon after the plant location was chosen. And, although a willingness 
to help was indicated, the assistance furnished was all part of a gieantic learning 
process and so was not instantly useful. Perhaps the most glaring need at the 
outset, therefore was that of planning at local, State, and Federal levels The 
newness of the defense boom towns, as well as the problems they present quicklv 
feXshi importance of joint, premeditated endeavor under 'national 


The initial delays on the powder-plant project (Alabama Ordnance Works) oc- 
curred in surveying its exact location. Original reports indicated that 27 000 
acres would be occupied instead of the 13,500 in the site which was finally selected 
4 miles north of Childersburg. As a result of this confusion, a number of families 
moved unnecessarily. ^ ue * 

Living on the reservation actually designated were 210 families, a majoritv of 
whom were tenant farmers and sharecroppers. The few landowners, in general 

hn?tv° n tn y S f «! ° dl T- T Far - m S< T- rity Admini stration was assigned respond 
bility to assist these families in making new living arrangements/ The agency 

fnt U ^ gran l S ' Wh T 2 e ! ded vi° help pe °P le move and established several projects. 
£™ I 7 ° T 1Sh6d t0 f ttle ° n them - A g° od man y took advantage of this 
opportunity, a few moved to nearby counties, and a small number made inde- 
pendent arrangements. Usually one person from these familv groups secured' 
Sd^ri^X P While ° therS aband ° ned farmin S temporarily to obTain 

Thus, Farm Security, in relocating persons forced to find new homes, furnished: 
to the area its first I ederal aid. 



In the change from the hamlet of yesterday to the powder-mill town of today 
there was a brief transition period which lasted from the time the plant site was 
selected until the first workers began to pour onto the reservation. Dazed resi- 
dents and avid speculators made frantic attempts to capitalize on this interval by 
building bunkhouses and erecting new buildings, airing spare rooms and renovat- 
ing servants' quarters, but the brevity of time and the general confusion prevented 
any constructive planning. The influx of workmen far outstripped the provision 
of living space for them. There were no blueprints for local officials to follow in 
getting ready for the problems to come, and the "boom" was actually upon the 
town within less than a month. Though construction was not started that soon, 
skilled and unskilled laborers, singly and with their wives and children, joined 
the trek to Childersburg so as to be on hand when jobs were assigned. They 
tame on foot, by train, bus, and car, some with money and some without, and 
they brought with them their problems. 

Ihus. individual and collective difficulties have combined to make it hard for 
Childersburg to cope with the problems which have arisen within its borders. 
The time shortage has magnified the complexities facing the village and the lack 
of coordinated effort by National, State, and local authorities has been another 

Overpopulation. — All of Childersburg's problems stem from its major complaint 
— overpopulation. No single facility, regardless of how entirely satisfactory it 
was for 500 people, could, without decided expansion, accommodate several thou- 
sand persons. This powder-mill town, therefore, found itself deluged with workers 
and job seekers, promoters and "followers," none of whom had been taken into 
consideration when the various local businesses and public services were set up. 

The people who have come there represent every State and four foreign countries. 
Many are veterans of construction jobs, having followed them all over the United 
States. They usually bring their families, make the best of whatever conditions 
they find, and expect to move on to the next job when their special skill is no longer 
needed. Their wages are high and they usually are able to shift for themselves. 

In contrast to this group are the unskilled laborers who rent bunkhouse rooms 
and get whatever jobs they can hold. They are likely to roam the streets at night, 
for as a rule they have no immediate relatives or have left them "back home." 
Other unskilled and semiskilled workmen commute from nearby areas and con- 
sider their work at the plant as being of the stopgap variety. 

Still another group of newcomers includes the du Pont, Army, and Government 
officials who, because they are able to pay higher rentals, frequently secure living 
quarters in the larger cities near by. 

At present — February 1942 — the peak of construction, with 21,000 employed, 
has passed. Now approximately 19,000 persons are working at the ordnance 
works, where authorized expenditure to date totals more than $109,000,000. 

Though the date on which operation will begin cannot be announced, it is 
expected to be sometime this spring. Then a new type of migrant will come to 
Childersburg — the plant operator. He will be young, have at least a high-school 
diploma and preferably 2 years in college, and must be at least semiskilled. 
Persons trained at other ordnance plants run by the du Pont Co. will teach the 
new operators, of whom at least 7,000 will be required to man the powder plant. 
Construction on the TNT plant will not be finished for many months, necessitating 
an overlapping of both types of workers in the area. 

The crowding affects residents and nonresidents alike. Family dislocations 
occur in as great a degree where the father, mother, and four children have moved 
into the kitchen and rented the whole house to newcomers as they do when an 
entire family group is forced to eat and sleep in a tent, a trailer, or a former 
chicken house. Similarly, the mud and dust, the clogged streets, and the sky- 
rocketing prices do not discriminate between old settlers and strangers. 

Housing. — Thus, it is the lack of adequate housing facilities which is Childers- 
burg's most conspicuously urgent need. Living space is at a premium not only 
within the town itself biit also for miles on all sides of it. Trailer camps line 
the highways in every direction and occupy most of the empty lots within the 
village. These trailer camps, however, are not the picturesque tourist courts 
frequently provided for the overnight traveler or vacationist. Instead, they 
are bare tracts of ground on which are jammed as many trailers as can park in 
the space occupied. Frequently a single building in the better equipped camps 
provides sanitary facilities and from it occupants of the trailers must carry 
water in any container they happen to have. 


Other makeshift living arrangements in the vicinity include bunkhouses, tent 
camps, and groups of cabins in clearings under the trees. Town regulations 
require an individual to pay a trailer-camp license if he allows as many as two 
trailers to park on his premises. For one, however, there is no fee. As a conse- 
quence, many homes in Childersburg with a few square feet of yard have trailers 
parked there. Woodsheds, barns, and garages have been converted into livable 
shelters and rented for fabulous prices. "Rooms," "Rooms and board," 
"Meals," and like signs appear on numerous front porches, because nobody 
wants to be left out of the windfall. 

Although the absence of housing facilities for the incoming thousands was 
the most quickly recognized need in the community, no immediate aid was 
secured. Application was made early for a defense housing project, but work 
on the first 100 units was not started until the fall of 1941. Close to completion 
in January of this year, the houses remain unoccupied because they are reserved 
for families of plant operators expected in the next few months. Announcement 
was made late in January that 200 more houses will be built to provide homes 
for the relatively "permanent" personnel, but these, too, will be barred to con- 
struction workers. Thus, while this greatly needed Federal aid will partially 
alleviate the housing shortage, many transients and their families will be forced 
to continue their makeshift arrangements as long as they remain in the vicinity. 

It is consequently apparent that the difficulties faced by Childersburg in the 
matter of housing have been complicated by the slowness of Federal aid and by 
the absence of any provision for the construction workers. More than a year 
has elapsed since certain needs became known and no assurance is yet given 
that 12 months from now conditions will be greatly improved. A community 
incapable of acting unassisted is thus placed in an even more precarious position 
by delayed and limited action by Federal agencies. 

Health and sanitation. — Like congested housing, health hazards are a corollary 
to overpopulation. In and near Childersburg, the mosquitoes and the dust in 
summer, the mud and the chill of drafty shacks and lean-to shelters in winter, 
combine to produce manifold health dangers. These are multiplied because of 
the inadequate water and sewerage system designed to serve a maximum of 900 
people instead of the 6,000 now living within the town limits. 

Application for a water and sewage project under the community facilities bill 
was filed January 23, 1941, but numerous delays prevented work from starting 
until January 26, 1942. The insufficient supply of water also produces a serious 
threat in case of fire among the town's flimsy, frame structures, especially since a 
single hose and a volunteer organization comprise the total equipment. 

The lack of water, likewise, has hampered adherence to sanitary regulations. 
Recognizing the need for control of health conditions in trailer camps, the State 
health department, early in 1941, issued rules governing their construction and 
maintenance. Strict enforcement of these provisions has proved difficult, how- 
ever, because of the shifting population, insufficient personnel, and the many 
adjustments necessary when a rural area becomes a defense center. 

All of these potential dangers to health and safety are magnified in the light of 
the inadequate facilities for care of the sick. One physician whose time was well 
filled in looking after the town's original residents is now swamped with work, but 
only one new doctor has moved to the locality. The nearest hospital, 11 miles 
away, is hardly large enough for the increased population of Sylacauga and has 
little space for patients from Childersburg. A greatly needed clinic for this 
village was recently approved under the provisions of the Lanham Act but it will 
have no bed space. 

The Alabama Ordnance Works maintains an excellent clinic and a small hospital 
for plant employees. They are cared for while at work and if injured on the job, 
but no provision is made for follow-up on those sent home because of illness, nor is 
anything done for their families. Since absenteeism cannot be effectively con- 
trolled unless health and sanitary facilities are provided for workers and their 
wives and children as well, the absence of sufficient doctors, clinics, and hospital 
beds may prove a serious bottleneck in the rapid production of munitions. 

Traffic and law enforcement. — Almost as serious a peril to individual health and 
safety as the lack of hospitals and water supply is the traffic through which plant 
employees must travel to get to work. Commuters from Birmingham go via the 
39-mile "suicide strip" where the accident rate is mounting daily. The inaugura- 
tion of a shuttle train between the city and the plant, as well as operation of 
numerous busses, has reduced the number of cars at the ordnance parking lots to 
about 9,000 a day. Cars pass the intersection of the access road and the highway 
at the rate of 1 every 7 seconds throughout the 24 hours, however, and there 


is bumper-to-bumper traffic whenever shifts change. Four State highway patrol- 
men in cars have been assigned full time to Childersburg while 6 more on motor- 
cycles handle the flow of traffic out of Birmingham. Two additional patrolmen 
work out of nearby Sylacauga. Numerous arrests have been made, but the rush 
hours continue to be perilous. Another cause of congestion is the large amount of 
through traffic on the main highway, which has not been widened to care for the 
increased pressure. No relief is foreseen for the present traffic dangers until 
construction work is completed at the plant and more houses are provided in the 
immediate vicinity for employees. 

Though assigned full police powers, the highway patrolmen are primarily con- 
cerned with the maintenance of safety on the public roads. Since the patrol does 
not work regularly within city or town limits, law enforcement and traffic regulation 
inside Childersburg are the responsibility of local authorities. The one-man force 
has been increased to four, but, since it lacks an automobile, its work is largely 
confined to a small area within walking distance of the town hall. Despite a 
growing awareness of the change in community life, there is still only a limited 
follow-up on calls which come from a distance, and first allegiance is paid to 
old residents. 

Child welfare and education. — The upheavals in Childersburg are coloring the 
lives of the children who have always lived there, as well as those of the transient 
workers. These children may be unable to grasp the full meaning of what is 
going on around them but they are adversety affected by the general restlessness 
and anxiety among the adults. Likewise, they suffer from improper food, wretched 
housing, little medical care, and the absence of community facilities for health, 
education, and recreation. 

The local school in 1940-41 had 13 teachers for its enrollment of 470, most of 
whom were brought in from the country in busses. The 1941-42 session opened 
with more than 900 children, each teacher having from 78 to 96 in a room. Appli- 
cations for Federal aid brought allocation of funds for maintenance and approval 
of a new 10-room building and a 4-room addition to the present structure. To date, 
however, the new building and annex have not materialized and the only extra 
space secured is the 6 rooms acquired by partitioning the auditorium. Twenty- 
four teachers are now employed, many of them wives of defense workers. Only 
4 of last year's faculty are now on the staff, and new teachers are forced to commute 
from Birmingham. The married teachers accompany their husbands when the 
latter go elsewhere to work, and, for this reason, some of the children have already 
had as many as 4 different teachers during the present school term. 

A similar turn-over is reflected among the pupils. Eighty percent of the new 
students brought no school records with them for they have continuously lived 
from place to place, while already this session approximately 100 children have 
withdrawn because their families are again on the move, following the trail of 
defense employment. 

Obviously, schooling under such conditions fosters truancy. One attendance 
officer must serve the entire county — an area in which every school is overpop- 
ulated by the influx of defense workers. (Another large defense project is being 
built in the northern part of the county.) Children, especially if both parents 
are working, frequently obtain undesirable jobs or become delinquent, because 
the necessary supervision is impossible. 

Among the teen-age girls who are coming into Childersburg, lured by the excite- 
ment of a boom town or by the hope of employment, many have secured work as 
waitresses at wages unprecedented in relation to their former economic status. 
These girls, with average earnings of $8 a week, pay disproportionately large 
amounts to live in cluttered rooming houses with no provision for their leisure 
hours. All too frequently they begin to prefer the adventures offered by ques- 
tionable commercial forms of entertainment, and sometimes drift into prostitu- 
tion. Decent, low-cost housing for these girls, wholesome, satisfying recreation, 
and some essential supervision would go far toward making it possible for them 
to earn an honest wage and toward redirecting their free time. A special com- 
munity worker on a protective child-welfare assignment is examining this problem 
closely and has recommended that aid be given to the town for building up the 
resources that are lacking. To date, however, no steps have been taken to pro- 
vide a recreational or housing center. 

Recreation.- — That the need for recreational opportunities is not confined to 
teen-age girls, however, is apparent even to the most casual visitor. Men aim- 
lessly roam the streets in the summer dust and now plod listlessly through them 
in the winter mud. They visit the post office and return to their rooms unless 
they patronize some of the commercial recreational spots which thrive with little 


regulation in the midst of town and along the highways. There are shooting 
galleries, one motion-picture theater, "juke joints," and taxi dance halls. On 
Fridays — pay day at the plant — business booms in every quarter while blind 
guitar players, itinerant beggars, and promoters of various patent remedies join 
the throngs on the narrow streets. 

Work Projects Administration last year organized a recreational program which 
included a playground and small library. It has been difficult, however, to secure 
strong leaders from certified personnel and to obtain the necessary equipment. 
With no auditorium except that of an adjoining church, the program has met with 
only limited success. 

Recognition of the need for recreational outlets led to erection (under the Lanham 
Act provisions) of a community center to be operated by United Service Organi- 
zations. This well-equipped building, manned by a trained staff, is expected 
to be a definite asset to the entire area. The delays in opening, caused by nu- 
merous unexpected difficulties, consequently produced keen disappointment 
among both local people and newcomers. 


From this account of its rapid and lopsided growth, it is evident that an accurate 
picture of Childersburg today is dark and uninviting. Overpopulation, improper 
and substandard housing, inadequate health, educational, and recreational facili- 
ties, coupled with attendant social and economic problems, combine to present 
a dreary outlook. A once scenically beautiful highway has been transformed into 
a conglomeration of "juke joints," unsightly trailer camps, paintless bunkhouses, 
and clusters of tents and shanties. "Gus's Place" completely overshadows the 
monument to De Soto's visit. 

As Childersburg moves into 1942 with many construction workers moving on 
to other projects, with a gradual unraveling of the machinery by which Federal 
aid comes to a defense boom town, and with a growing acceptance that it will 
never again be a contented village, the town is completing its transition to a 
new kind of life. 

Does this mean that Childersburg is to become a casualty of the war, or can it 
be made into a happy American community? As a powder-mill town helping to 
win this war, it must fight a battle to save its own soul in order that it may again 
be a place where people — though busier than they were before- — can live in peace. 
Childersburg cannot, however, find its peace alone. So far, what has been done 
is only a beginning. Other much needed assistance would incorporate in planning 
a four-lane highway, additional housing developments, public park facilities, and 
further provision for health, welfare, education, and sanitation. The community 
is accepting its new conditions of life despite the mayor's statement that "We 
prayed for this thing and now we are praying for forgiveness." 

The town cannot, however, provide a healthy and orderly kind of community 
life which can produce the powder that is our Nation's necessity except as the 
community can feel the friendly hand of its Government reaching in through the 
network of wartime services and duly constituted national agencies to underpin 
these facilities. 

The victory to be gained depends both on the need to construct and man powder- 
mill towns and on the recognition that there must be decent community life in 
these defense areas. Workers and their families must be assured that what they 
do is as important to the winning of this war as planning for the armed forces. 
They must know, too, that their Government is equally as interested in the 
community life afforded them as it is in the" morale of the military services. 

In this defense community, gaps, inadequacies, and confusion still exist, but, 
as the town has changed its initial tempo, so the Federal and State agencies of 
Government have indicated certain ways they can and will help. These interests 
and resources must now be brought closer together in order that the town's basic 
needs can be met. As the Nation's war production is speeded up and the demands 
upon the civilian population are increased, every safeguard must be extended to 
these defense workers, in order that victory may be assured in the powder-mill 
villages, as well as on the battle front. 

These villages must be safe and good places in which to live both today and 
tomorrow when the critical emergency has passed. Childersburg is now a powder- 
mill town and not a sleepy agricultural center. It must adjust to a new era of 
living and the newcomers must become a part of the community, and not apart 
from the community. All this will take time and the cooperation of local, State, 
and Federal authorities. Coordinated planning must follow, but courage, resource- 
fulness, and unity of purpose give promise that present conditions will give way to 
60396— 42— flt. 32 18 


well-rounded community life and preserve individual freedom 
our democratic American traditions. 

keeping with 

Exhibit 12. — Statement by D. O. Dugger, Manager of Proper- 
ties, Muscle Shoals Area, Tennessee Valley Authority, 
Wilson Dam, Ala. 

Early in February the chief field investigator attached to your committee visited 
this office and discussed with me briefly some of the problems confronting us in 
the field of employee transportation. At that time we were about to initiate a 
survey for the purpose of determining the possible need of our employees for trans- 
portation facilities as of the time the use of private automobiles would be drastically 
curtailed or entirely eliminated because of inability of employees to obtain tires. 

Our first step in the survey was to determine the origin of our employees and the 
manner of their transportation to their place of work. This information we have 
obtained. I am pleased to attach a copy of these data. 

Early in the survey it became apparent that the problem of employee transpor- 
tation is coming to all of. the defense industries in this area. It seemed appropriate, 
therefore, that the problem be explored on a broader basis than was originally con- 
templated. Accordingly, a committee composed of representatives of the several 
defense industries in the area and of civic groups in the communities has been 
organized and is now engaged in developing basic data to permit of the most in- 
telligent approach to the problem of providing adequate, carefully coordinated 
employee transportation service for the defense workers in the district. The 
committee is not yet in a position to supply data relating to the problem. 

Tennessee Valley Authority data on employee transportation— Muscle Shoals district, 
Mar. 15, 19^2 













Metropolitan area of Tri- 
Cities served by bus line: 


Alabama— Continued. 




















Phil Campbell-. — 






Rural areas adjacent to Tri- 
Cities served by Rural 
Free Delivery. Probable 
average travel distance 8 


































riwifnr "" 


Pittsburg Landing 




West Point 




Total workers originating in other than the metropolitan area of the Tri-Cities, 930. 

Average worker-miles of travel distance for workers originating in other than the metropolitan area oi 

Survey of 817 employees in departments other than chemical engineering shows 645 being transported in 
private automobiles. 


Exhibit 13. — Statement by J. M. Griser, Vice President, Ala- 
bama Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co., Mobile, Ala. 

Labor Turn-Over 

We respectfully submit the following statistics concerning our labor turn-over 
as related to the Mobile housing situation and future effect upon production 
schedules of this company. 

Yearly production employment for the highest week was as follows: 


1939 1,350 

1940 3,257 

1941 (to date) 10,500 

Estimated additional worker demand during the next 12-month period will 
approximate 10,000 men. Our present schedule calls for employing one-half 
this number during the next 5 months. 

Our personnel department constantly furnishes estimates of company require- 
ments, together with type of employees needed, to the United States Employment 
Service. We are working, in a limited degree, on reciprocal arrangements with 
companies whose production has been curtailed by the national defense program. 
At the present time, considerable recruitment is being done through applications 
filed with the personnel office ; however, we feel this source will soon be depleted. 

The Selective Service Act has drawn about 40 of our employees into the armed 
forces during the past 30 days. An additional 20 terminated to volunteer. 

It is the policy of this company not to ask for deferments except in the case 
men difficult to replace and very necessary to our production schedule. 

We have incorporated a production-worker plan which is divided into these 
four phases: (1) preemployment training, (2) training on the job, (3) supple- 
mentary training, and (4)' supervised training. Production workers are given 
instruction on the job, during working hours, by qualified supervisors and me- 
chanics. Supplementary training is given, after work hours, in the plant. These 
classes, having a restricted maximum of 15 men, meet two or three times weekly 
for about 3 hours. The training is of a specialized nature, being blueprint reading, 
safety methods, use of tools, materials, and trade mathematics. Instruction is 
given by supervisors and skilled mechanics who have qualiffied through completion 
of training courses set up by the War Production Board. 

Over a period of 4 pay weeks beginning March 31, 1942, and ending April 21, 
1942, the average number of employees was 11,161 and terminations 531, indicating 
a labor turn-over of 4.75 percent." A large portion of terminations are due to in- 
adequate housing. Our industrial relations department records a daily average 
of over 75 employee complaints of inability to obtain living quarters. 

In order that we may execute the ship-building and ship-repair program sche- 
duled for us by the United States Maritime Commission and the United States 
Navy, it is absolutely necessary that we increase the number of employees in 
our plant as outlined above. We understand that the Gulf Shipbuilding Corpo- 
ration and the United States air depot at Brookley Field will also have an ad- 
ditional worker demand during the same period as ours. We are very much 
alarmed on account of the inadequate housing facilities in and about Mobile, 
and unless something is done immediately to remedy this situation, we fear 
that none of us will be able to build our employment up to the peak necessary 
to carry out the program that has been outlined for us. 

We have been approached by Mr. C. F. Bates, of Mobile, in connection with 
male barracks and cafeteria which he and his associates are interested in con- 
structing and operating on Blakely Island, which is adjacent to Pinto Island, 
where our main plant is located. They propose to build 32 barrack buildings, 
which will house 2,500 men, with the necessary other buildings for cafeteria, 
laundry, office, arcade, and stores. They estimate that the cost of this venture 
will be approximately $1,000,000. They advise that they are able to finance this 
project to the extent of $100,000 and are requesting our advice as to where they 
may be able to obtain a loan in order that they may execute this program. 

We feel that there is a dire need of such an establishment. Not only will 
it house 2,500 of our workmen, but it will place them within walking distance 
of their work and thereby relieve the transportation problems that we will be 
facing when automobile tires are no longer available. We are not in position 


to advise these gentlemen as to where assistance can be obtained for this project. 
We hope something of this kind can be constructed on this site as it is by far the 
most appropriate location for a large male barracks. 

Exhibit 14. — Statement dy Charles A. Baumhauer, Mayor- 
President, Board of Commissioners, City op Mobile 

Public Facilities in City of Mobile 

This statement sets out some of the conditions existing here in Mobile at this 
time and what we may expect in the future. 

Let me point out in the beginning that the debts of the city of Mobile far exceed 
constitutional limits; therefore the city cannot issue bonds or incur debts chargeable 
to the general debt of the city. The city of Mobile has what is recognized as the 
lowest tax rate of any city with a population of over 50,000. When this is ex- 
plained it is easy to understand the limitations and extent of the city's ability. 
The proposed additions to the water and sewerage systems which have been ap- 
proved bv the department of public works were carefully considered so that the 
debt service would be reasonably certain from present and future income of the 
water department. These projects are not chargeable to the general debt structure 
arid are contingent upon an election to be held in this city on May 14. 

In furnishing figures on population, it is necessary to include the metropolitan 
area which is adjacent to the city and which receives some of the services of the 
city, such as police and fire, but not to the extent furnished within the corporate 
limits. The population in this area according to the last census was 114,906; a 
conservative estimate today is 150,000, or an estimated increase of approximately 
35,000. . • ' • 

Transportation is a problem that requires serious attention, both as to public 
conveyances and private automobiles. During the peak hours when the major 
part of the workers in the several industries and Brookley Field report for work 
and in the afternoon on their return home from work, all busses are crowded to a 
point where no more can be handled. Certain streets of the city are heavily con- 
gested with automobiles. Mobile being one of the old cities of the country, street 
planning did not take into consideration heavy movements of motor vehicles. 
There are comparatively few through streets and these few must bear the burden. 
The 100 percent use of all busses extends over a period of 5^ hours each work- 
day ; during the balance of the day, about 60 percent are in use. 

About 2 weeks ago, a representative of the Public Roads Administration came 
to Mobile with representatives from the State highway director's office and the 
State highway patrol. I called' in representatives from the larger industries, 
Brooklev Field and the chamber of commerce. Several conferences were had 
with a view toward staggering hours over a longer peroid, each industry to coor- 
dinate their system with the others so that the movement would be as smooth as 
possible and would not interfere with production. Mr. Sowell, from the Public 
Roads Administration is expected back in Mobile this week to carry on with the 
plan. Practically all of the industries have signified their willingness to help. 

When this plan is put into operation, it is hoped to receive the cooperation of 
retail stores, offices, banks and all institutions employing the white collar group 
by pushing down their opening and closing hours so as not to interfere with the 
heavy movement from industry. A number of the larger plants are working 
overtime; the movement from these plants at about the same time as the clerk 
movement begins, adds to the congestion. 

We need badly to widen some of the narrow through streets; to open new ave- 
nues and to connect certain existing streets. A good bit of thought and attention 
is being given to this matter. A plan is underway to carry out a small part of 
this street program if the city has the legal ability. The matter of financing is 
now receiving study. In any event, the city is badly in need of an extensive 
street program. 

As the tire situation becomes more critical and thousands of additional work- 
men are brought in and many who now reside a long distance move in closer, the 
burden upon public conveyance will be beyond the capacity of present equip- 
Up to this time, the supply of water is ample to meet the demand. Total aver- 
age pumpage has increased from 9,000,000 to 10,000,000 gallons daily. An 


additional supply will be necessary if the population increases as is anticipated. 
A filtration plant is needed — encroachment on the watershed by human habita- 
tion and soil erosion make it a vital necessity. The United States Health Service, 
the Alabama Board of Health and the Mobile County Board of Health strongly 
recommend this addition. This filtration plant, extensions to the water dis- 
tribution system and construction of a new sanitary sewer main are included in 
a project which has been approved by the Department of Public Works, and 
which will be placed before the people at an election on May 14. The future 
needs are additional water supply and extensive additions and corrections to 
sanitary sewer system. The necessity for a large portion of these additions comes 
from the area beyond the city limits and is due almost 100 percent to war indus- 

The number of new houses built in 1941 is 1,700. 

Number of Fedeial Housing units under construction or approved is 3,600 
dwelling units; single room dormitories for 500 men and trailer court for 300 
families. These are both within and outside the corporate limits. The Federal 
Housing Administration has approved 3.000 homes to be built with private capital 
during 1942. 

Law enforcement and traffic has suffered to some extent, chiefly a lack of traffic 
officers. The department is now short six or seven men and it is with extreme 
difficulty that new men can be found. The compensation of a private in the 
department is $131 per month as compared to $70 paid 4 or 5 years ago. While this 
is a considerable increase, it does not compare with wages earned by a number of 
men in industries. The ability of the city to pay higher wages is controlled 
altogether by receipts. The anticipated growth will require additions to the police 
force to insure proper protection. 

The fire department of the city is entirely motorized. With few exceptions, 
the apparatus is from 14 to 20 years of age. Recently, we added a new 100-foot 
aerial ladder truck and one 500-gallon pumper; a 750-gallon pumper is on order 
and expected. In addition to these purchases, a project was filed with the depart- 
ment of public works for a new one-truck fire house to be built near the new 
housing developments; one new truck to be stationed at this new house and one 
new truck to give added protection to the downtown area, which is congested, and 
the industries. This project was disapproved by the Atlanta office of department 
of public works. It is urgently needed to give added protection to existing indus- 
try and new residence construction — therefore, we hope to have it reopened. The 
age and condition of most of the fire equipment will necessitate its replacement at 
an early date if proper protection is to be given new development. 

Local hospitals have been crowded for some time. Providence Infirmary, 
Mobile Infirmary, and Allen Maternity Home, all private ii stitutions, have at 
present a total capacity of about 225 beds. The city hospital, a strictly charitable 
institution has 110 beds. With the added population' up to the present time, 
more facilities are necessary. Projects have been approved for a 50-bed addition 
to each of the Providence and Mobile Infirmaries and for the construction of a 
new 100-room city hospital. This new hospital with additions to existing insti- 
tutions should relieve the situation but when they are ready for occupancy, the 
load will have increased again so that more facilities wilJ be needed. 

It has been conservatively estimated that 10 to 15 thousand additional employ- 
ees will be needed in the war industries and Brookley Field during the next 4 or 5 

All of this additional load has been added to our city which has suffered greatly 
from financial problems and low income. Almost all of the population increase 
is due to war needs. These matters have been explained to numerous com- 
mittees, boards, engineers, and investigators of the Federal Government. In one 
instance, a group of 10 or 12 Congressmen came here for a personal investigation. 
In every instance we were told that Mobile was the "hot spot" of the country and 
that help was needed and needed quickly and yet, it has been extremely difficult 
to get assistance. This assistance is necessary if local production is to reach 
planned quantities. 

Recently, a planning committee was authorized to give study and make recom- 
mendations as to the needs of the community. The personnel of the committee 
will be composed of officers of the Army and Navy stationed here, representatives 
from several large industries, and a local attorney. It is understood recommenda- 
tions from this group will receive priority rating which is so necessary. 


In addition to projects already approved, the most important for consideration 
for immediate future needs are as follows: 

Additional water supply. 

Additions and corrections to sanitary sewer system. 

Widen streets and open new streets. 

New city jail; present jail condemned. 

Provide recreation, badly needed. 

Additions to fire department. 

Further study of hospital additions. 

Experience will show definite needs as the trend of growth is in one direction or 
another. Close attention will be given to any possible demands and efforts to 
provide service will be made. 

It is most important that the Federal Government take notice of existing 
conditions and render immediate assistance. The need is now; the war will not 
wait for us to prepare. 

Exhibit 15. — Statement by C. F. Anderson, Director for Ala- 
bama, United States Employment Service, 711 High Street, 
Montgomery, Ala. 

The Shipbuilding Industry in Mobile, Ala. 

The Mobile office of the United States Employment Service has been affected 
materially by the expansion of war industries in the area. The Employment 
Service is being relied upon to a greater extent, especially in supplying skilled 
and semiskilled workers to defense jobs. Much of the recruiting for these classi- 
fications is done through our clearance system since this type of labor supply has 
long since been exhausted locally. In-migrants to the Mobile area have very 
definitely increased the activities of the local employment office. It is estimated 
that between 65 and 80 percent of new applications (between 617 and 760 reg- 
istrants on the basis of approximately 950 applications in April 1942) taken in 
the white division are in-migrants. This figure will run 15 to 20 percent (between 
250 and 308 registrants on the basis of approximately 385 applications in April 
1942) in the colored department. 

Open orders are held by the employment office from the shipyards for [men 
skilled and semiskilled in the following occupations: 

Shipfitters Ship electricians 

Marine pipefitters Sheet-metal workers 

Arc welders Machinists 

The Employment Service is constantly on the look-out for applicants coming 
into the office who might be qualified for any of these jobs, and if qualified, are 
referred to the shipyards. 

Recruiting needed workers from other areas is done through our clearance 
system. Briefly the clearance system works in this way — all sources of local labor 
supply are exhausted for workers to fill local needs. If and when local supply 
is inadequate clearance orders are instituted for distribution to other areas within 
the State, and, if need be, clearance orders are forwarded to the regional and 
national levels. The last order which has just been put into national clearance 
was for 1,000 electric welders. The clearance system of the United States Employ- 
ment Service is far more widely used and is functioning now much better than 
was true in the past. In Alabama only 7 clearance placements as order holding 
office and 13 clearance placements as applicant holding office (a total of 20) were 
made in March 1941 with this number increasing to 2,338 clearance placements 
as order holding office and 2,773 clearance placements as applicant holding office 
in March 1942. A high percentage of the skilled and semiskilled persons included 
in these placements were for the shipbuilding industry in Mobile. 

In addition to using the Employment Service, local war industries still rely on 
the old methods of hiring at the gate, recruiting by word of mouth, and through 
their employees. Probably one major reason for a continuation of this type 
recruiting is the large numbers of job seekers at their employment offices every 
day. A large percentage (probably 60 to 70 percent) of these job seekers are 

In Mobile it is definitely becoming a very acute problem to house these addi- 
tional incoming people. In fact, the labor turn-over is some of the war industries- 



is alarming. This is partly attributable to suitable living quarters not being 
available for workers, especially the better type. 

As above stated, there is already a somewhat acute shortage in certain war 
industry jobs and the situation is expected to become much more acute in the 
near future. Already considerable relaxation in specification of job qualifica- 
tions is noticeable by the number being hired in the nonskilled, semiskilled, and 
trainee classifications. 

The use of increasing numbers of vocational education trained people will 
continue to alleviate the labor shortage to some extent. Local training material 
has practically reached the exhaustion point in the Mobile area, and we are at 
present bringing trainees in to a resident center from contiguous States. One 
of the major factors contributing to our inability to recruit for training is that 
very few eligible for training are able to sustain themselves without working 
while taking training. 

The acute housing shortage in Mobile is affecting very materially the efforts 
in recruiting needed laborers for war industries. 

An estimated number of available nonregistered workers, including women and 
handicapped workers, is 1,100. Of this number approximately 45 percent (495) 
are estimated to be women. Not more than 3 to 5 percent are thought to be 
handicapped persons who are available for employment. 

Break-down of Mobile County active 


through Apr. SO, 19tf 



Occupation group 


































Professional and managerial 











































Agricultural fishery, etc 







Total white 

Total white 


Total negro 

Total negro 



Summary, Mobile County: 

White 1,157 

Negro 1,092 

Total 2,249 


White .. .__, 782 

Negro 176 

Total 958 

Grand total 3,207 

Included in the count the following Work Projects Administration registrants: 

White 300 

Negro 403 

Total ^03 


White 307 

Negro 23 

Total 3^0~ 

Grand total... 1 033 


Also included are: 

Trainees 193 

Stevedores 137 

(Negro, 133.) 

Exhibit 16. — Statement by Col. V. B. Dixon, Commanding 
Officer, Brookley Field, Mobile, Ala. 

War Department, 

Air Corps, 
Brookley Field, Mobile, Ala. 


The House Committee Investigating National Defense Migration requested 
that Maj. George Dunn submit a report to your office showing the status of 
personnel separated from service with the Army Air Corps at Brookly Field 
and the reasons for their separation. Major Dunn having been assigned to other 
duties which preclude him from submitting this report, the information is fur- 
nished by the undersigned. 

At the close of business on April 30, 1942, there were included on the Air 
Corps pay roll for this depot a total of 7,079 civilians. Of this total, approxi- 
mately 2,000 are mechanic learners in the training schools away from the station. 
This would make approximately 5,000 workers at the Field of whom 400 are 
administrative and clerical workers, 1,100 unskilled, 1,650 semiskilled, and 1,850 
skilled workers. 

It is expected that from 8,000 to 10,000 civilians will eventually be employed 
at this Depot. All personnel are employed under regulations promulgated by 
the United States Civil Service Commission arid that agency does all of the 
recruiting for the requested workers through its district and field offices. Approxi- 
mately 1 percent of the positions are filled by transfers here from other govern- 
mental agencies. Most of the workers now employed have come from the States 
of Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee. 

Since the beginning of employment at this station, approximately 8,150 persons 
have been employed. Of this number 1,071 have left our employ for various 
reasons. About one-half of these have entered military or naval service with a 
large percent of the balance having left because of inadequate housing facilities, 
high rents, and the high costs of commodities in the immediate vicinity. The 
number of employees leaving this station would be much greater except for the 
fact that this headquarters has not expanded the activities of this depot as rapidly 
as needed because it was realized that skilled employees would immediately 
resign when they found they could find no suitable place to live. For this reason, 
no action has been taken to return to Brookley Field approximately 1,000 qualified 
employees now absent in trade schools and other depots throughout the United 
States, although these men are needed and are on the pay roll of this station. 
It is, therefore, obvious that the acute housing situation in Mobile has adversely 
affected the operations of this activity to a far greater extent than indicated by 
the labor turn-over reported in the above figures. 

To alleviate the acute shortage of homes in Mobile, it is the recommendation 
of this office that immediate action be taken to expedite the construction of 
defense homes now authorized and, further, action be taken to prove additional 
defense houses, including the necessary schools, hospitals, etc., as recommended 
by the Mobile Emergency Board for Procurement of Necessary Facilities. 

It is further recommended that action be taken to prevent individuals in the 
city of Mobile charging exorbitant rents for rooms, apartments, etc., in accord- 
ance with the instructions of the United States Government relative to the 
freezing of rents. Failure to take this action has made it possible for many 
individuals in Mobile to charge exorbitant prices for rooms, apartments, etc., 
that must, of necessity, be occupied by defense workers. 



Exhibit 17. — Statement by W. C. Griggs, Superintendent, 
Mobile Public Schools, Mobile, Ala. 

The Public School Situation in Mobile 

The school situation in Mobile is best shown by the school enrollment figures 
in the following exhibits — exhibit I and exhibit II. The gain in enrollment during 
the past 3 years has been at a much more rapid rate than for the years immediately 
preceding and indications are that this rate will be stepped up to a still higher rate 
during the next year or two, due to increased migration of workers into Mobile 

The figures are summarized here. 
(Exhibit I) 10 vears, 1931-32 to 1941-42: 

(a) City white 1,380 

(b) Suburban white 1, 702 

Total 3,082 

(c) City Negro 844 

(d) Suburban Negro 886 

Total 1,730 

(Exhibit II) 3 years, 1939-40 to 1941-42: 

(a) City white 531 

(6) Suburban white 979 

Total 1,510-1 

(c) City colored 150 

(d) Suburban colored 200 

Total 350 

1 ; 860-2 

(a) Maximum enrollment, city and suburbs, white 13, 25R 

Maximum capacity, city and suburbs, white 11,218 

Beyond capacity 2, 038 

(6) Maximum enrollment, city and suburbs, Negro 7, 114 

Maximum capacity, city and suburbs, Negro 5, 880 

Beyond capacity 1, 234 

Beyond capacity 3, 272 

Exhibit I 







City, white: 











J 12 




Old Shell Road 


Russell . 












Exhibit I — Continued 
Total gain: 

10 years, 1932 to 1942 - 1,380 

3 years, 1939 to 1942 531 

In 7 years, gain 849 

In 3 years, gain 531 

Total 1,380 







Suburban, white: 





i 15 


1, 006 



















Total gain: 

10 years, 1932 to 1941. 
3 years, 1939 to 1941 .. 

In 7 years, gain 723 

In 3 years, gain 979 

Total... 1,702 

Exhibit II 







City, colored: 



i 5 















Total gain: 

10 years, 1932 to 1941. 
3 years, 1939 to 1942.. 

In 7 years, gain. 
In 3 years, gain. 







Suburban, colored: 







































Exhibit II — Continued 

Total gain: 

10 years, 1932 to 1942 — - 886 

3 years, 1939 to 1942 _200 

In 7 years.. 686 

In 3 years 20 ° 

Total - - 886 

Relief through the Lanham Act has been promised. 

1. One building south of Brookley Field, 8 rooms which is now under con- 

2. One building south Ann Street, 28 rooms. 

3. One building, north Prichard, 40 rooms. 

Contract for No. 3 was supposed to have been let April 30. It has not been 

Three more Government housing projects are being set up now that will 
mean about 3,000 more houses. It seems certain that they will be built. This 
will bring from 1,500 to 2,000 more pupils. 

The number of periods at Murphy High School have been increased to 7. 
To accomplish this we have staggered pupil attendance to care for the more 
than 1,000 extra pupils. Pupils under this plan enter and leave at various times. 
We fear that this may lower morale, increase truancy, and worry parents. 

Teachers under the stagger plan have less opportunity for personal contact 
with pupils. Pupils despair of getting special help. Parents have less chance 
to confer with teachers. 

Teen-age boys and girls are leaving school to take employment. However, 
most of these are in the senior class and will be permitted to graduate if the 
principal receives a report of the progress in development on the job. Those 
thus conditioned have achievement in class work that makes it certain that 
they would graduate. 

At 4:30 p. m. December 12, 1940, representatives from the office of education 
and the State department of education came to my office to see me about a 
survey of our conditions. Three members of my staff were put at their disposal. 
We have had many subsequent surveys and have made many reports. Eight 
rooms of the 70 or 76 proposed will be ready by next September. Our population 
is rapidly increasing. If houses could be had, it would increase more rapidly. 
It is known that many have not brought their families. Some have taken work 
elsewhere in order to be with their families. 

It is difficult to plan for the placing of pupils and determining the number of 
new teachers to employ. We cannot determine the number of months our 
prospective funds will carry the ensuing session. 

Exhibit 18. — Statement by Emmett B. Frazier, M. D., F. A. C. S., 
Chairman, Hospital Committee, Mobile County Medical 
Society, Mobile, Ala. 

Hospital Facilities in Mobile 

Mr. George Simons, consultant with the' National Resources Planning Board, 
has just completed a preliminary report on the Mobile defense area. This is a 
most comprehensive and careful study and is based on accurate observation. 
Mr. Simons has agreed to my sending a part of his report, a transcript on the 
hospital situation. Mr. Simons went with me personally to visit each one of the 
hospitals and interviewed the superintendent of each one. 

As you will note, the nurses home for City Hospital, the additional building at 
the Mobile Infirmary, alterations at the Providence Hospital, and funds for a 
new Federal-constructed hospital have all been approved by the Government. 
Plans and specifications for each of these ventures have been completed. The 
architect for the nurses home at the City Hospital advises that as yet he has not 
been able to obtain a bidder from among the contractors. Bids on the other 
projects have not yet been announced. 


For some time our hospital situation has been most acute. It is necessary to 
send all obstetric cases home after about 6 or 7 days by ambulance to make room 
for additional maternity cases. Oftentimes, it is necessary for maternity cases 
to remain in the labor room, or surgical cases to remain on the operating floor, 
until beds can be secured. 

A tepresentative of the United States Public Health Service, making a survey 
in Mobile several months ago, made the observation that some of the space which 
we now have in one of the hospitals is not being used to advantage. Mr. Simons 
also made this same observation. In this they are quite correct. At the City 
Hospital there is an entire floor in a comparatively new addition which could 
easily care for 55 patients. This is now being utilized for a venereal-disease clinic, 
and a nutritional and dental clinic for children. Both of these activities could 
well carried out in some other portion of the building or be easily moved elsewhere. 
Dr. Chason, our local health officer, would make no objection to having this clinic 
moved. This City Hospital is a city- and county-owned institution and is leased 
to the Sisters of Charity for a period of 10 years. This contract was renewed 
about 4 years ago and has about 6 more years to run. The Sisters of the City 
Hospital have not wished, heretofore, to enter the private hospital field in compe- 
tition with the Providence Hospital, which is a Catholic institution for private 
patients. However, at a conference at the City Hospital this morning with 
Sister Gertrude, she expressed her willingness to open one of these wards for the 
care of private industrial injuries, provided the City and County of Mobile would 
furnish the necessary equipment. The Commissioners have already expressed 
themselves as willing to do this, and so it is most likely that within the next 2 
weeks this can be accomplished. 

Hospital Facilities 

The only hospital service in Mobile and Baldwin Counties is furnished by three 
hospitals in Mobile, (1) City Hospital, (2) Mobile Infirmary, and (3) Providence 
Hospital. A United States Marine Hospital operated by the United States Public 
Health Service is located in Mobile, but it is not available to the public. There 
is also a small maternity home operated by a church. But as far as general 
hospital service is concerned, the three numbered above serve the public. Ac- 
cording to reports of the medical profession these hospitals also serve cases in a 
large tributary area extending beyond Mobile and Baldwin Counties. 

The capacity and ownership of each hospital is as follows: 








' Since mid-year, 1941, all the hospitals have been operating beyond capacity. 
Rooms have been crowded, cases have been obliged to leave the hospital earlier 
than advisable, cases requiring hospitalization have been unable to gain admit- 
tance. The hospitals have been so crowded that it has been impossible to give 
the desired attention and the staffs have been greatly overworked. Sister Helen, 
Administrator of the Providence Hospital, operated by the Sisters of Charity 
stated, "For the year past we have had a marked increase in our admissions, 
making it necessary to add more beds. Several private rooms have been made 
semiprivate, the sun parlors have been utilized as three-bed rooms, and the four- 
bed wards have had two beds added. We feel that patients are not receiving full 
benefit of their hospitalization, due to lack of facilities. Many people who need 
hospital care are inconvenienced by waiting for appointments or find it impossible 
to secure a hospital bed. It is impossible to carry out the principles of good 
hospital housekeeping, for our rooms are not vacant long enough to afford the 
opportunity of adequate cleaning and airing." 


The following tabulation shows how the actual admissions to the Providence 
Hospital have increased in the 3 years, 1937 (a normal year), 1940 and 1941. 
Patients remaining on the 1st of the month are not included. 

Admissions to Providence Hospital 














Daily average. 





This tabulation imparts a better understanding of Sister Helen's remarks 
Until the middle of 1941 the Providence Hospital had onlv 88 beds available- 12 
additional beds were added during the latter part of 1941. From a monthly 
average of 176 actual admissions to the Providence Hospital in 1937, the average 
has nearly doubled to 332 for the year 1941. 


The Mobile Infirmary now has 110 beds all filled and with every bit of available 
space being utilized. Conditions of overcrowding are as bad, if not worse, than 
those observed at the Providence Hospital. The following tabulation shows how 
the admissions to this hospital have also increased. 

Average number of actual admissions per day 




The average number of actual admissions per day here have increased from 64 
in 1936 to 102 for the year 1941. 

At the time of these observations (February 1942) it was impossible to secure 
hospitalization at either the Providence Hospital or Mobile Infirmary. 


The City Hospital, operated by the Sisters of Charity under contract with the 
city, has a capacity of 125 beds. It is a large sprawling and roomy institution 
caring for both white and colored patients. Although its facilities are currently 
taxed it could accommodate more beds by certain rearrangements. Rooms located 
in the basement and space on the first floor now occupied by nurses could be utilized 
by patients, providing space is made available outside the building for nurses. 
Additional beds might also be placed in the wide corridors connecting units of the 
plant. The following tabulation shows how the services of this hospital have 

House patient adrnissions. City Hospital, Mobile, Ala. 

City-county patients 

Private pay patients 





N. B. 



N. B. 



N. B. 













































House patient-days 

City-county and private, 1941 41, 998 

City-county and private, 1937 40, 462 

1941 increase over 1937 1, 538 

Out-patient emergency cases 


Private pay 























1941 increase in emergency cases, over year 1937 (city-county) 3, 283 

1941 increase in emergency cases, over year 1937 (private cases) 40 

In its report of January, 1942, the United States Public Health Service stated, 
"Additional general hospital beds should be provided. For a contemplated 
metropolitan Mobile population of 180,000, the beds required would be 4.5 times 
180, or 810, a deficit of 465 beds, irrespective of the rest of the county's needs." 

Neither of the shipyards have provided for any hospital service. Each has a 
first-aid station but no hospital. 


Applications filed with the Defense Public Works for increased hospital facilities 
have been approved, but to date (April 1942) no action has been taken on them. 
These projects are described as follows: 

Alabama, 1-223, city hospital, 52-bed nurses home. — The completion of this 
project will relieve space within the hospital now utilized as nurses home. The 
project was approved on March 21 but the offer has not yet been accepted. 
Final plans for the nurses home have been completed. 

Alabama, 1-225, Mobile infirmary and Providence Hospital. — Projects have 
been approved — offers accepted. The plans and specifications for the Providence 
addition will be ready April 15 and for Mobile Infirmary about May 20. It is 
estimated that these projects will be completed by October or November 1942. 

Alabama, 1-189, construction of a new 100-bed hospital. — The construction of a 
new 100-bed hospital at a cost of $510,000 was approved for Federal construction 
on February 27, 1942. Plans and specifications will be ready for approval during 
April. About 9 months will be needed to complete the project. 

Unfortunately when the above projects have been completed there will still be 
a deficiency of 200 to 300 beds as judged by the recommendations of the United 
States Public Health Service. 

The location of additional hospital facilities beyond those currently approved 
is necessarity influenced by the judgment of the Mobile medical profession, 
which points out that outside the corporate area of Mobile there are few, if any, 
medical men experienced in hospital staff or administration work. Even in 
Mobile there is a shortage of nursing and staffing personnel due to the demands 
of the Army and Navy for doctors and nurses. It is the consensus of opinion 
that it would be practically impossible to staff hospitals not located within the 
present hospital area of Mobile. 


Accordingly, any additional hospital facilities should preferably be located on 
the grounds of the existing institutions and additional expansion should be of 
temporary construction. Following this line of thought, at least 100 additional 
beds could be located on the grounds of the City Hospital, 50 at the Mobile 
Infirmary, and 50 at the Providence Hospital. These added facilities will not be 
a final answer to the hospital problem of the Mobile area, but they will serve to 
relieve a situation that is becoming increasingly acute as now constituted. 

Exhibit 19. — Statement by C. V., Mayor, City of 
Prichard, Prichard, Ala. 

Report on the City of Prichard 

The city of Prichard, Ala., incorporated in 1925, had an official census popula- 
tion of 6,084 in 1940. The present estimated population inside the city limits, 
embracing an area of 1.2 square miles, is conservatively 10,000. 

The population of the city of Prichard plus its police jurisdiction, extending 3 
miles from the city limits and including the suburban communities of Plateau, 
Krafton, Chickasaw, Whistler, and a part of Toulminville, is conservatively 
estimated at 30,000. The city of Prichard furnishes police and fire protection 
for this area. 

The yards of the Gulf Shipbuilding Corporation at Chickasaw, the Southern 
Kraft Mill of the International Paper Co. and the Associated Continental & 
Terminal Bag Mills, the Hollingsworth & Whitney paper mill, the Gulf Foundry, 
the J. C. Sanders Cotton Mill and several large sawmills and other industries are 
located in or near to the Prichard police jurisdiction. Also, with the opening of a 
new road to the Pinto Island yard of the Alabama, Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co., 
numerous workers at that yard are moving to the Prichard area. 

The Prichard area is desperately in need of more adequate housing facilities. 
Provision of 2,000 defense dwelling units near Chickasaw will give substantial 
relief but it appears that due to the constant influx of new workers, even more 
units will be needed. 

Two sanitary sewerage projects, financed in part by Work Projects Administra- 
tion grants, are under construction to furnish relief in Prichard proper but more 
sewer lines are a definite necessity for health protection. 

The Federal Government has allocated approximately $300,000 for a new 
junior high-grade school just north of the Prichard city limits which should relieve 
serious overcrowding of the two existing public schools in Prichard and schools in 
Plateau, Chickasaw, and Whistler. 

Provision of public recreation facilities for defense workers is strongly desired. 
The city of Prichard has purchased a site for a recreation project and has applied 
for a Federal grant of approximately $30,000. At present, there are positively no 
public recreation facilities in this entire area. 

Opening of a new improved highway from Chickasaw through Prichard to 
Toulminville should relieve traffic congestion, now an exceedingly difficult prob- 
lem. The highway project is under way, with Work Projects Administration 

Our immediate needs, therefore, are more sewerage, more housing and public 

We are in dire need of more adequate fire protection. 

Exhibit 20.— Statement by George D. Brown, Superintendent, 
Madison County Board of Education, Huntsville, Ala. 

In regard to the Madison County school system and the effects of national 
defense migration upon it, permit me to briefly explain the situation as I see it. 
This area has been a national defense area only a few weeks; therefore, up to the 
present, we have not felt the effects of defense migration to the extent that we 
will feel it just a little later. 


A large part of the construction labor for the Huntsville Arsenal has come'froin 
Madison and adjoining counties. These workers have driven from their homes 
to their work. Only a small percentage of the 12,000 workers has moved into 
this area. Since this is the case, our school system has shown an increase in 
enrollment of only a few hundred pupils beyond our normal increase and most of 
this increase has been in the West Huntsville section where the school was already 
badly overcrowded. Since cars and tires are wearing and cannot be replaced, we 
predict that several hundred construction workers will be forced to live in the 
arsenal vicinity. This will add many families and additional children. 

Our huge increase in school enrollment will come with the operation of the 
arsenal when large numbers of skilled workers with their families will come here 
to make permanent homes. Hundreds of new houses will be constructed for the 

The county school system works 100 percent in cooperation with the State 
department of education; however, most of the administration is in the hands 
of the county officials. The State's staff is always available to the county when 
needed. Many supervisors, such as vocational agriculture and home economics 
come from the State department. More than half the school funds are furnished 
by the State. At present the county is levying all taxes permitted under the 
State constitution. We anticipate very little increase in revenues. Due to the 
arsenal's acquisition of much ad valorem tax property, our local school revenues 
will probably show a decrease. 

The personnel of the county school system is composed of 5 members of the 
county board of education, superintendent and office force, 35 white principals 
plus 230 other white teachers, 85 Negro principals and teachers, four county me- 
chanics, and 52 school-bus drivers. Salaries for teachers vary from $50 per 
month up to $220 per month, depending upon the type certificate held, the num- 
ber of years' experience, and type position. We follow the State salary schedule 
for both white and colored. Due to the low salaries, we have lost many qualified 
teachers who have entered other work with much better pay. We now have a 
shortage of teachers.