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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 61.djvu/523

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THE COMPETITION OF THE UNITED STATES.

tion in America was fourteen million pounds, in 1900 it was six hundred and seventy-eight million pounds, or in eight years the increase in output has grown more than forty-eight times. Tin plate has actually been landed in considerable quantity at Cardiff, the original home of the industry.

The figures given above for iron and steel refer to the unmanufactured product; in machinery and other articles manufactured from iron, the United States competes keenly with the United Kingdom. In connection with iron and steel may be mentioned the competition which America has offered in bridge building and similar work. England has till very lately had a practical monopoly of railway building in most of the British colonies. But the Atbara bridge in the Soudan was constructed by America, the lowest British tender being £15, 15s. (or $76.50) a ton, whereas the American tender was £10, 13s. 6d. (or $51.60) a ton. The British contract was for twenty-six weeks, the American for only fourteen. Afterwards came the construction of the Gokteik Viaduct in Burma, which was completed by an American firm in twelve months, and is the wonder of British engineers. The American tender was for fifteen pounds a ton, the lowest British tender was for twenty-six pounds ten shillings a ton, and the time required was three years. The Ugandy Viaduct is another instance in which the American tender was twenty per cent, lower than the British, and the time required slightly more than one third.

In rolling stock for railroads, American competition is likewise felt. New Zealand has taken locomotives from America, so has Cape Colony, which not long since placed a million pounds worth of orders including twenty-nine locomotives, in this country. Even the Midland Railway Company in England in 1898 ordered twenty locomotives from America. The Sanyo Company in Japan has been using American locomotives for six years and has lately ordered more from America, but not from Britain. They have already thirty-three American and twenty-four English engines. They say that the American engines are more quickly provided and cost only two thirds as much. It is said that the American design is the better, though it is admitted that the British workmanship is superior. The English boilers are more carefully riveted and are less liable to leak. The American wheels are, however, said to have better tires and to last longer.

As an example of how American machinery is being introduced into England, the experience of the firm of Messrs. Charles Churchill & Co. in London may be cited. Thirty-five years ago they commenced to introduce American machinery into Britain and met with many discouragements, but during the last five years they have sold four million dollars' worth of machinery. The business of the past year has been