« PreviousContinue »
highways, for which bonds have already been voted by the State of California, one leading to the northern portion of the valley via Hollister, Los Bonis, Dos Palos, Madera, and Fresno, and the other via King City, Coalinga, Hanford, Visalia, Tulare, and Bakersfield, and will be connected directly with San Luis Obispo to the south by Ocean Shore Boulevard, for which bonds have been voted by the State of California for $1,500,000, for this specific purpose of construction, and will be linked to the San Francisco Bay section by the State highway system, constructed through the Santa Clara Valley via San Jose, and will have direct connection with San Francisco by the coast road via Santa Cruz on a stone highway.
The source of all water and power supply for both San Francisco Bay cities and Los Angeles emanates from the Sierra Mountains, almost due east of Monterey's unprotected harbor, and we conclude that a small enemy force of either motor cycle unit, or air planes taking flight from enemy ships, could destroy the supply of both the San Francisco Bay cities and Los Angeles of water, power, and light, and could wreck the pumping stations and thus put out of commission the oil supply emanating from the oil fields of California, now being distributed to San Francisco Bay cities, Monterey, and southern California, and thus totally paralyze all the industries and defenses of California without the necessity of such a possible foe meeting with any opposition or resistance whatever.
The Secretary of the Navy, in his speech made at the Presidio of Monterey on the 31st day of August, 1919, stated that Monterey Bay is to-day, as it was in the days of Commodore Sloat, the key to the Pacific coast." In the event of attack by foe upon the Pacific coast, Monterey would be the logical point for attack.
The Associated Oil Pipe Co. conveys the oil through their lines directly from the oil fields of central California to Monterey and shipped to northern coast points and to Hawaiian Islands, which guarantees to the Navy fuel supply over the shortest lines to the oil fields. The electric power is obtained from the Great Sierra Power Co. and distributed by the Coast Valleys Gas & Electric Co., and sufficient power can be obtained over these lines to supply whatever power will be necessary.
The water supply for Monterey and locality is obtained from the Monterey County Water Works, from the large reservoirs which impounds the waters of the Carmel River in the mountains at its source, 20 miles distant. (See report Commander Cox on oil, light, power, and water supply.)
A hearing held on Friday, November 12, 1920, at Colton Hall, in the city of Monterey, by Col. D. E. A. Kyne, United States Corps of Engineers, State Senator Rigdon, from San Luis Obispo, testified that as regards fuel supply approximately 90 miles distant from Monterey Harbor he visited the coal mines at Stone Canyon, and at 600 feet depth walled anproximately 1 mile through a vein of good quality coal, 18 feet deep, exhibits of which quality was furnished to the Department of War. He stated that there was sufficient coal in that mine to furnish the needs of the entire Pacific coast, and in the event of a Navy base established at Monterey would be the cheapest possible coal to be supplied for Navy uses. That this mine was now being worked and $1,000,000 being expended in its improvement and development.
Climatic conditions should not be overlooked in presenting the claims for a Navy base to be established here. From United States Weather Bureau reports we find that the average temperature is 54° in January, 50° in April, 57° in July, and 55° in October, and that the average variation of temperature for Monterey Harbor is but 70. The average mid-winter and mid-summer, January 52°, July 58o. There is no such climate in the world, search where you will. It is invigorating, not enervating. We have an average of 293 sunshiny days in the year. The rainfall is not excessive and the rainy season is not continuous. It is truly said that there are days of rain and weeks of sunshine.
It is understood that the Government has expended $40,000,000 in naval vessels for the Pacific Fleet, and we submit that there being but five natural harbors on the Pacific coast, namely, San Diego, San Pedro, Monterey, San Francisco Bay, and Puget Sound, that Monterey Bay should not be overlooked in establishing Navy defenses for the protection of the Pacific coast.
Highest naval authorities have publicly stated that if the United States is to maintain a fleet of 200 or more vessels upon the Pacific coast that every possible location would have to be made available for the accommodation of such a fleet, and the Navy engineers at the direction of the department, having made exhaustive surveys and estimates of the proposed Navy base to be established at Mon terey by Commodore L. M. Cox, chiei aid of public works at Mare Island, copies of which reports are hereby submitted, and also having personal knowledge by repeated visits by Admiral J. L. Jayne, commandant of the twelfth Navy district, with recommendation and reports of the same, which we also submit.
WASHINGTON, June 15, 1920. MY DEAR MR. CONGRESSMAN: Referring to our frequent conversations about the importance of developing a naval base at Monterey, following my visit and examination of the facilities at that important seaport of the Pacific. I am writing to express my regret that the Congress which adjourned a few days ago declined to make any appropriation for new projects on the Pacific, but appointed a committee of Senators and Representatives to visit the Pacific coast this summer and fall to make a thorough study and report at the December session of Congress. I am writing to the chairmen of both the Senate and House Naval Affairs Committees calling attention to the elaborate report by Admiral Jayne, which he made following my visit to Monterey, at which time I was greatly impressed with the opportunities and advantages, and offering to this committee the services of na val ollicers, constructors, and engineers to assist them in making a technical and thorough examination of the situation at Monterey in the hope that in the general scheme of large expansion on the Pacific the coming Congress will make such ample provision as will fully supply the growing Deeds of the great Pacific Fleet.
I can not tell you how disappointed I was at the action of ('ongress in its dealing with the naval activities and necessary bases on the Pacific. I know of your earnest and constant intelligent advocacy, not only of the development of Monterey, but the other needed bases on the Pacific, and know that you share with me regret at the delay in mal what I egard as necessary provision. For years we have spent millions in developing the Atlantic base3. and above everything else at that session of ('ongress I emphasized the importance of large appropriations and large authorizations for development of bases on the Pacific. I assure you it will be my great pleasure to cooperate with you in any way toward securing these necessary naval bases in larger numbers than those already existing. Sincerely, youis,
JOSEPHUS DANIELS. Hon. Hugh S. HERSMAN,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C.
We submit the following letter from the representative of the eighth district of California, together with copy of letter from Josephus Daniels, Secretary of Navy, to Hon. H. S. Hersman:
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D. C., June 19, 1920. Mr. J. P. Pryor, President Chamber of Commerce,
Monterey, Calif. DEAR MR. PRYOR: I am in receipt of copy of letter written by Secretary Daniels to to Hon. Carroll S. Page, chairman of the Senate Committee on Naval Affairs, the same letter also being written to Hon. Thomas S. Butler, chairman of the House Committee on Naval Affairs. For your information and files, I am inclosing same. Yours, sincerely,
H. S. HERSMAN,
JUNE 15, 1920. MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Last year it was my pleasure as well as my duty, in company with a commission of able naval officers, to make some study of the naval sites on the Pacific, both those in operation and those that will be needed for the proper care of the increasing Pacific Fleet. The Congress postponed the consideration of the enlargement needed on the Pacific and named a committee of Senators and Representatives to visit the coast and in person make an examination and very thorough study. I am confident that when they have done so they will agree with me that the paramount duty of the next Congress will be to make the large-t provision for bases on the Pacific, and in order to do this, I am calling your attention to a visit I made with Admiral McKean and others to Monterey. After visiting that place I was favorably impressed with it, and directed Admiral Jayne, commandant of that naval district, to visit Monterey with a civil engineer and make a thorough study of it. His study and recommendations will be furnished you, and I trust that your committee will visit Monterey personally and examine the advantages and opportunities offered there. Sincerely, yours,
JOSEPHUS DANIELS. Hon. CARROLL S. PAGE, Chairman Committee on Naval Affairs,
United States Senate. The distance from Seattle (Bremerton Navy Yard) to San Diego is in the neighborhood of 1,400 miles, along which entire distance there are only three established naval stations or bases.
A similar distance on the Atlantic coast would extend from Portsmouth, N. H., to Key West, Fla., along which area there exists about 12 naval stations or bases. When these stations or yards were established by Congress, the entire United States Navy was not as large as the present Pacific Fleet and did not begin to approach the Pacific Fleet in number of ship, tonnage, or value.
Should this commission decide to select the site we offer to the Government for a submarine, destroyer, and aero base, in accordance with the recommendations heretofore set forth, the entire site will be conveyed to the Navy Department clear and free of incumbrance.
With no intention of hurrying the commission, but with the view of obtaining title to all the land and water site at as early a date as possible to avoid undue appreciation in values by the various respective owners, and also that other plans for the improvement of this site may be carried out, the suggestion is offered that this commission recommend to the present Congress that the Navy Department be authorized to accept this site, and that thereafter the development of the naval base proceed as the necessity and circumstances may require and the state of the National Treasury admit.
On July 7, 1846, Commodore John Drake Sloat, United States Navy, first raised the Stars and Stripes on yonder flagstaff at the old customhouse in Monterey, thus adding subsequently another star to our flag. (Incidentally, the same flagstaff first used by Sloat is still in use, it being a spar taken from one of his vessels.)
What could be more fitting or appropriate than that there should be established, almost under the shadow of that flag, by the raising of which the United States Navy acquired California for the Nation, a naval base, that the glorious traditions of our splendid Navy be perpetuated?
HEADQUARTERS TWELFTH NAVAL DISTRICI,
San Francisco, Calif., January 23, 1920. From: Commandant. To: Chief of Naval Operations, Navy Department, Washington, D. C. Subject: Proposed naval operating base. Monterey, Calif. References: (0) Commandant's preliminary report to Bureau of Navigation, No.
13518–H-19, of December 15, 1919. (b) Report of Navy Yard Commission, House Document No. 1916. Part 4, page 19, paragraph 30, and page 23, paragraph 54. (c) Report of Commander L. H. Cox (CC), U.S. N., aide for Public Works, I welfth Naval District. dated January 16, 1920. (d) Letter of Lieut. Frank Simpson, jr., U.S. N. R. F.. Class 5, and attached memorandum dated January 21, 1920. (e) Report of Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors, April 11, 1916, contained in Document 5. Committee on Rivers and Harbors, House of Representatives, United States,
Sixty-fourth Congress, first session. Inclosures: (3) (A) Copy of reference (a). (B) Copy of reference (c). (C) Copy of
1. In paragraph 30 of reference (b). the Helm Board reported that it had made a personal inspection of conditions at Monterey. It appears that the board inspected a site which was located on the military reservation at Monterey and reported adversely upon it. There was nothing to indicate that the Laguna del Rey was brought to the attention of this board. In paragraph 31, same reference, Monterey Bay was recommended under the head of "Temporary war operating bases," as a submarine base and as an aircraft operating base. The Helm Board report was made in 1917, before the full value of the lessons of the great war had been learned. As result of the operations in that war, I am convinced that it is a necessity to have at least three bases between San Francisco and San Pedro for submarines, destroyers, aircraft, and in general such small war craft as minesweepers, mine layers, and patrol vessels, made ready in time of peace for use in war. if it can be done without prohibitive cost. These bases would also be of much use in times of peace in such operations of aircraft as were recently carried out when a flight was made from San Diego to San Francisco, and which are contemplated in the instructions for the naval air station, San Diego, Calif., also for small craft in general in connection with their training for duties with the fleet in preparation for war. Monterey is about 90 miles from the Golden Gate, and the possibility of making a harbor of the Laguna del Rey seems to offer desirable location for such a base, together with commercial possibilities which make the expenditure involved reasonable.
2. It will probably be necessary to protect the entrance to this lagoon by a breakwater to prevent its being choked up by drifting sand. As indicated in reference (t), the river and harbor act of July 25, 1912, adopted a project for a breakwater at Monterey Harbor at a cost of $800,000, provided local interests would contribute the sum of $200,000 to be used toward the execution of the project, and provided further, that assurance be given satisfactory to the Secretary of War that rail connections between Monterey and the San Joaquin Valley would be effected within a reasonable time. A first appropriation of $200,000 was made. The State of California undertook to provide the $200,000 required of local interests, but the railroad has not been built, and the community has not been able to make the guaranty that it would be built. Members of the chambers of commerce at Monterey have argued that the two highways which are to be built by the State into the San Joaquin Valley will be, to all practical purposes, as good as a railroad on account of the extensive use of the automobile truck for short hauls and the short distance from the San Joaquin Valley to Monterey. The claim is that the automobile truck for such short hauls is really better than the railroad, because the truck can go into the orchard or other agricultural activity, load up and carry its cargo directly to the wharf for unloading onto a steamer, whereas with a railroad additional handling of the freight is necessary. This argument appeals to me. It is
understood from reference (e) that this congressional appropriation has been transferred to other work, and would necessitate reappropriation. It would seem that with the need for such a breakwater by the Navy, added to the commercial requirements of the port, it would not be difficult to have this appropriation renewed and increased, if necessary, at a time when the Government's income will permit, and I believe that a beginning should be made as soon as possible. It is noted that the location of the breakwater des gned by Army engineers is not the same as that suggested by Commander Cox, but the latter is governed by the location of the lagoon.
3. Reference (c) is a report of the bill for public works of the twelfth naval district, who has made a tentative layout for a base, which involves a breakwater to cost about $2,000,000, dredging on entrance channel 300 feet wide and 30 feet deep, and an inner harbor to the depth 25 feet. His report is accompanied by a letter from the president of the chamber of commerce at Monterey, which agrees to secure the title to the lagoon and the tract of land for the naval reservation free of cost to the Government. Commander Cox was too modest in his request for the reservation site, and I am convinced that the chamber of commerce at Monterey is prepared to give more than requested by him. The experience of the Navy Department is that naval reservations are too small, to begin with, and that when it is desired to enlarge them, the cost of the land is excessive. It has already been suggested that a landing field for land planes be provided on the reservation, and, in view of the fact that battleships are to carry such planes, this seems to be pertinent. I have discussed with the president and other members of the chamber of commerce at Monterey the question of controlling the whole of the area of the lagoon and the water front made by the excavation, and feel confident that all the land immediately around the lagoon can be secured at very little cost. There are, I understand, a large number of small holders, and the chamber of commerce would undertake to purchase their holdings, if necessary, and in a quiet way, which would probably avoid exorbitant prices. In view of what the cities of San Diego and Los Angeles have offered the Navy Department I believe it is desirable to ask the chamber of commerce at Monterey to transfer the title to all the area proposed to be dredged, and with a suitable strip of land surrounding this water area, together with the land to be covered by the disposal of the dredgings. The area of the inner harbor to be formed by dredging will not be large, and, if it is to be used for aviation purposes specially, it is desired to have control of the whole area, permitting it, however, to be used for commercial purposes under such regulations as the Navy Department may determine, these regulations, of course, being as liberal as possible for the commercial users. Commander Cox's report indicates a number of wharves for commercial purposes. It would not be necessary to build all of these wharves at the beginning, nor would it be necessary to dredge the whole area to the depth of 25 feet at the beginning. In order that the whole of this inner basin may be controlled by the Navy for military purposes, it is suggested that that portion of the shore line which is not required for naval purposes be leased by the Government to commercial enterprises on such terms as will be satisfactory to their interests to develop the commerce of the port and at the same time will serve the Government's interests in the event that enlarging the naval reservation should become necessary. It seems that, with suitable transportation facilities connecting Monterey with the near-by portion of the San Joaquin Valley and the Salinas Valley, there are great possibilities for a port at Monterey, and the development of the commerce may indicate in a few years the desirability of carrying out the harbor proposition as indicated by Commander Cox in inclosure (G), plate 12, of his report.
4. The conversion of this lagoon into an inner harbor, and the construction of a breakwater will greatly stimulate the development of the part, permitting privately owned shipping to find berthing spaces free from the coastal swell and undertow which now make it impossible for large vessels to lie at existing wharves without damaging them, and at the same time provide the necessary naval base for small craft. A necessary feature of developing the lagoon and inner harbor is the removal of the railroad track which now crosses the lagoon. Commander Cox's report indicates a new route for the railroad, and it is believed that this route is practicable. It would be desirable, however, to have the city of Monterey arrange with the railroad for relocation.
5. Referring Commander ('ox's estimate (par. 10 of reference (c), under (a) “Improvement Outer Harbor"), the three piers in the outer harbor can be reduced to one in the original estimate. Under (b) · Basin development exclusive of the proposed naval depot,” in view of the fact that the basin need not be dredged at the present time to 25 feet over its whole area, the item of dredging can be considerably reduced for the original appropriation, also the item of 25 commercial piers could be eliminated; the idea being that these piers would be constructed as needed by the industries leasing the water front. If the plan which I have suggested, of the naval department controlling the entire water front of the basin, and leasing to commercial