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Page:Memoirs of Henry Villard, volume 2.djvu/317

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Completion of the Northern Pacific Railway

THE negotiations with the Northern Pacific were resumed in September, 1880, by Mr. Villard, assisted by Thomas F. Oakes, whom he had induced to resign as general superintendent of the Kansas Pacific and assume the functions of vice-president and general manager of the Railway & Navigation Company. The Northern Pacific parties were lukewarm and hard to satisfy, but a contract was signed on October 20. Mr. Villard's side secured in it all the essential points it had been striving for except a covenant by the other party not to build down the north bank of the Columbia, which it could, however, hardly make without risking a forfeiture of a large portion of its land grant in Oregon and Washington. The Northern Pacific recognized the other company's right of way on the southern bank and its title to the station grounds, and waived all claims for damages, and, most important of all, agreed to a division of territory, with the Snake and Columbia as the dividing line, except that it consented to the construction of a line into the Palouse country by the Railway & Navigation Company. In consideration of all these concessions, the latter agreed to complete a standard-gauge road within three years from the western end of the Pend d'Oreille division at the mouth of the Snake River to Portland, and to grant the Northern Pacific the right, with out the obligation, to run its own trains over it at a fixed charge per train mile. It also agreed to carry Northern Pacific construction material at reasonable and fixed rates, and to effect the sale at $2.50 an acre of three hundred thousand