Advertisements, anecdotes and fiction
January Court Day
Staunton Gas Works
Office VA. Central Railroad Co.; Richmond, January 19th 1859
Full Text of Article
Office Va. Central Railroad Co. Richmond, January 19th, 1859.
To the Editor of the Staunton Spectator--
Dear Sir: Within the last two days I have seen the communication of your correspondent "Waynesboro," addressed to me in your paper of the 11th inst., censuring the Superintendent of Transportation for the winter arrangement of the Freight trains West of the Blue Ridge. On the 31st ultimo, a number of gentlemen residing in Waynesboro, addressed me a private letter on the same subject. The subject was submitted to the Board yesterday, and I now send you a copy of my answer to Messrs. Bell, Reeder and others, together with a note from the Superintendent of Transportation, which I hope will prove satisfactory. Very Respectfully, E. Fontaine Office Va. Central Railroad Co.
Richmond, Jan. 5th, 1859.
Messrs. Jno. J. Bell and Thos. J. Reeder and others--Gentlemen: I have received your communication requesting that the arrangements for running the trains may be changed back to what they were previous to the late winter arrangement, and have given to it the respectful consideration to which it is entitled. My answer is delayed a day or two to embrace an opportunity for conference with the Superintendent of Transportation.
I am happy in believing that you do not belong to the class who take pleasure in complaining of the management of the Company, and therefore trust that you will be prepared to believe that the Superintendent would not wantonly subject your community to inconvenience by any change in the running of the trains.--That officer, as well as myself, appreciates the importance of making the Company popular, but I am sure you will agree with me, that popularity ought not to be sought at the sacrifice of the interests of the stockholders. The schedule of running one set of trains on a Railroad cannot very readily be appreciated with all the reasons calling for its adoptions by those who are not familiar with the various details, each operating on another, and consequently we have to ask of those who do not approve that they will not suffer themselves to believe that a change would be made without adequate reasons therefor [sic]. The most important object to be obtained in working a Railroad is the saving of expense; gross receipts may be large, but if obtained by a disregard of expense there will be no profit! These are the considerations which have induced the Superintendent to reduce the number of trains which are run during the winter; and if it does result in denying to your community some of the conveniences they enjoyed in the summer, I hope they will not complain, when continued without serious loss to the company.
The same consideration has recently required that the Night Train to Charlottesville should be discontinued. The anxious expectations of the Stockholders to receive some dividends, which they have a just claim to expect, forbids the continuance of any arrangements which does not promise some profit.
I am told that for some time past, the passenger receipts from the Car running with the freight between Waynesboro and Millboro have been insufficient to justify the expense of running. I am also told by the Superintendent, that the stopping of the Freight at night at Greenwood, promotes the convenience and advantage of operations in the Tunnel. He also says that it saved some extra running. You may rest assured, Gentlemen, that it would be very agreeable to the Superintendent as well as myself to gratify you in all these arrangements, if it could be done consistently with the interests of the Company. That officer is held specially responsible for effecting all the judicious economy he can in his department, and I trust your good judgement and good wishes for the Company, will sustain him in his efforts.
I regret that you cannot be gratified in this case.