Canal navigable, boatmen will not work for 1871 rates
Herald of Freedom and Torch Light. May 7, 1873
The Canal Navigable.—
The Canal is said to be in navigable order, but on account of a difficulty between the Boatmen and the Coal Companies with regard to the prices of freight, trade has not been resumed. The Cumberland Times of Saturday says that a meeting of Boatmen was held in that city, at which resolutions were adapted, pledging the boatmen not to carry coal at less than the rates of 1871, namely $ 1.45 per ton to Georgetown and $1.50 per ton to Alexandria, and a committee was appointed to notify agents of coal companies of the action of the meeting. From the best information we could gather yesterday, the coal companies will resist the demand, and hold to their determination not to pay more than the closing rates of the last season, namely, $1.35 to Georgetown and $1.40 to Alexandria and the trade will likely remain at a stand still for an indefinite period. Freights for the season immediately preceding the present, ruled as follows: In 1871, to Georgetown $1.45, to Alexandria $1.50. In 1872 the season opened at $1.40 to Georgetown, and $1.45 to Alexandria, but before it had advanced far the rates were cut down to $1.35 to Georgetown and $1.40 to Alexandria, which latter figures the companies now offer.
Prior to the action of the boatmen's meeting it was thought that a compromise could be effected upon the opening rates of last season, viz : $1.40 per ton to Georgetown and $1.45 to Alexandria, but a proposition to offer the companies these terms was vociferously voted down.
In making their demand for a return to the prices of 1871, the boatmen claim that they are only asking what is justly due. Hay, feed and provisions are quite as high as in 1871, and of all the men interested in the coal trade, the wages of the boatmen alone have been cut down.
Herald of Freedom and Torch Light
Chesapeake and Ohio Canal (Md.); Washington County (Md.), History