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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1905, Part I

Report of mine inspector for Indian territory,   pp. 641-704 PDF (25.9 MB)

Page 641

SOUTH MCALESTER, June 30, 1905. 
SIR: In compliance with the requirements of the act of Congress 
approved March 3, 1901, entitled "An act for the protection of miners
in the Territories," I have the honor to submit to you my fourth 
annual report upon the condition of coal mines in the Indian Terri- 
tory for the year ending June 30, 1905, the same being the twelfth 
annual report of the United States mine inspector since the passage 
of the act and the creation of the office of mine inspector. 
The results for the past year show a falling off in the production of 
coal to the extent of 349,096 tons. To explain this in general terms, 
it'may be included in one term that this decrease in production was 
consequent upon the lack of demand. Searching, however, par- 
ticularly for the details or causes which lead up to that lack of 
demand is a difficult task, and if attempted to be explained fully 
would necessarily lead into fields of conjecture and opinion, about 
which many people would differ. 
There is one principal cause, however, which may be alluded to 
and which has been more or less referred to in past reports, and that 
is the increasing consumption of oil for steam purposes, not only on 
the large systems of railroads, but in the manufacturing industries of 
the market which the Indian Territory coal seeks to supply. Another 
reason which can be legitimately stated can be understood by refer- 
ring to my previous report, in which it is stated that the dealers and 
consumers had laid in very heavy stocks in the fall of 1903, and on 
account of the very mild winter were left in the early spring with 
excessive stocks on hand, and this may have had some effect in de- 
terring the dealers from putting in heavy stocks in preparation for 
the past winter. 
There have been no special causes curtailing the production of coal, 
as there was during the preceding year, and therefore no reason other 
than the lack of demand and the causes leading up to that lack of 
demand can be specifically stated. 
In regard*to the sources of production of coal in the Indian Terri- 
IND 1905 ii                                       641 

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