ENDANGERED RUBBER PRODUCTION.
As so much rubber enters into the manufacture of hose, the following report from United States Consul Louis H. Ayme at Para, Brazil, is important. “The usual period of low water (vasante) on the upper Amazons has set in this year much earlier than usual. In consequence, a fleet of twenty-one steamers and a very large number of sailing and rowing craft of considerable burden, all heavily laden with the annual supplies for the rubber camps, are stopped at the mouth of the Purus river, many of the boats being high and dry on the banks. Some of the supplies are more or less perishable, and all are sorely needed; failure to get them to the camps will mean heavily diminished returns of rubber next season. At the same time the unusual and very heavy rains in the lower river region have severely affected the production of ‘islands’ rubber,’ and very little may be expected for the next six weeks or more. The trees begin to blossom in June and during this time the production of latex dimisinshes, so that very little islands’ rubber is to be expected in this market for the next four months or more. There is little or no rubber on hand here.” —
Savannah, Ga., is said to be at present in corresnondence with a New York city firm as to purchasing a fireboat, specially designed and equipped for fire-extinguishing purposes. She has powerful engines and can throw seventeen streams of water at one time, eight streams on either side and one from the top of the deck house. She is 115 feet long, twenty feet six inches in width and her depth of hold is nine feet four inches. She is equipped with condensing engines. The boat was rebuilt in 1900 and is said to be in good condition.