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more for war expenses was passed, only a single vote being cast against it in the House of Representatives. Bills for the increase of the army and navy were enacted, one of them providing for “selective conscription" in place of the discredited volunteer system. This last supremely important measure, through scandalous “playing politics” in Congress, was not enacted until May 19th, and then the humiliating announcement was made by the War Department that, owing to the “depletion of supplies," none of the 500,000 conscripts would actually be called to the colors before about the first of September!

GERMAN SHIPS SEIZED Meantime administrative acts were strenuous. A few hours after the enactment of the war resolution United States officers took possession of the vast and valuable array of German merchant vessels which had been interned for safety at various American ports. There were ninetyone of these vessels, including the largest steamship in the world and several others of the largest and swiftest class. Their total tonnage was in the neighborhood of 400,000, and their value was probably much more than $100,000,000. A catalogue of this gigantic argosy, the largest by far ever seized in the history of the world, is as follows:

At the port of New York, including Brooklyn and Hoboken:

Gross Approximate

Vaterland, passenger..

54,282 $7,500,000
George Washington, passenger

27,000 5,000,000 Kaiser Wilhelm II, passenger. 19,361 4,000,000 President Lincoln, passenger.

18,168 3,600,000 President Grant, passenger .. 18,072 3,600,000

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Pennsylvania, passenger..
Grosser Kurfürst, passenger
Barbarossa, passenger...
Princess Irene, passenger...
Friedrich der Grosse, passenger.
Hamburg, passenger.
König Wilhelm II, passenger.
Prinz Eitel Friedrich, passenger.
Armenia, freighter..
Adamsturm, freighter.
Pisa, freighter..
Prinz Joachim, passenger.
Allemannia, freighter.
Harburg, freighter..
Magdeburg, freighter.
Bohemia, freighter...
Nassovia, freighter.
Portonia, freighter..
Maia, freighter..
Indra, ship...
Clara Mennig, freighter
Matador, bark.

Gross Tons. 13,333 13,243 10,915 10,881 10,695 10,531 9,410 8,797 5,471 5,000 4,967 4,760 4,630 4,472 4,497 4,284 3,092 2,778 2,555 1,746 1,685 1,468


Value. 2,600,000 2,600,000 2,000,000 2,000,000 2,000,000 2,000,000 2,000,000 1,500,000 1,000,000 1,000,000 1,000,000 1,000,000 1,000,000 1,000,000

800,000 800,000 800,000 600,000 600,000 400,000 500,000 300,000

At twenty-three other ports, in the United States and the insular possessions:


Tons. Boston:

Baltimore: Amerika.....

22,622 Bulgaria... Kronprinzessin Cecilie . 19,503 Rhein. Cincinnati...

16,339 Neckar. Koln.....

7,409 Philadelphia: Wittekind.


Rhaetia.. Ockenfels....

5,621 Prinz Oskar New London:

Newport News: Willehad.....

4,761 Arcadia...

11,440 10,058 9,835

6,600 6,026



Tons. Wilmington, N. C.:

Honolulu-Continued Kiel....

4,494 Staatssekretär Kraetke. 2,009 Nicaria...

3,974 Governeur Jaeschke..., 1,738 Savannah:

Hilo: Hohenfelde.....

2,974 C. J. D. Ahlers.... 7,490 Charleston:

San Juan, P. R.: Liebenfels... 4,525 Odenwald.....

3,537 Pensacola:

Pago Pago, Samoa: Rudolph Blumberg..... 1,769 Elsas..

6,591 Vogesen.

3,916 Manila: Jacksonville:


5,433 Frieda Leonhardt...... 2,822 Buchum..

6,161 New Orleans:

Camilla Rickmers 5,130 Breslau.. 7,524 Carl Diederichsen..

1,243 Andromeda 2,554 Clara Jebsen.

1,735 San Francisco:


3,130 Serapis. 4,756 Elmshorn..

4,594 Neptun. 197 Esslingen.

4,902 Ottawa. 3,659 Johanne.

1,531 Portland, Ore.:


1,925 Dalbeck. 2,723 Mark...

6,579 Seattle:

Pong Tong.

1,631 Saxonia... 4,424 Rajah..

2,028 Winslow, Wash.:


8,007 Steinbeck.. 2,164 Sambia

4,765 Astoria:


3,789 Arnoldus Vinnen...... 1,859 Tubingen..

5,586 Kurt...

3,109 Zamboanga: Honolulu:


2,168 Pommern.. 6,557 Marudu

1,514 Prinz Waldemar. 3,227 Darvel.

1,308 Setos....

4,730 Cebu: Holsatia..

5,649 Prinzess Alice... 10,981 Locksun.. 1,657 Tsintau..

1,685 Loong Moon..... 1,971 Wiegand..


Many of these vessels had been maliciously damaged by their crews, by the breaking of parts of the engines,

etc., before surrender; but none so seriously but that they could soon be repaired and put into service.

AUSTRIAN SHIPS ALSO TAKEN A few days later, upon severance of diplomatic relations with Germany's ally, Austria-Hungary, the government similarly took possession of fourteen ships of that nationality, as follows:

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New York Bay:

Martha Washington..

Newark Bay:


New Orleans:

Teresa ..




Newport News:




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The pier and water-front property at Hoboken, which had been occupied by the great German steamship lines

as their terminal, was taken by the United States Government as a center for shipment of supplies to the allies.

RADIO STATIONS SEIZED The government also, immediately upon the declaration of war, took possession of all wireless telegraphic stations, public and private, and caused all that it did not need for its own purposes to be dismantled. This was, of course, to prevent the misuse of such apparatus by German spies, and also to prevent anybody from evading the censorship and transmitting information which the government did not wish sent out. In New York City alone more than two hundred amateur plants were thus seized and dismantled.

MANY SPIES ARRESTED The day after the declaration of war no fewer than sixty-five German spies, or suspects, were arrested by the military authorities in various places throughout the country, while thousands more were placed under the observation of the Secret Service. This was the first time since the War of 1812 that such measures had been taken against aliens.

The President also issued a proclamation, which was followed by state and municipal orders everywhere, prescribing the conditions on which unnaturalized Germans might continue to live in the United States and enjoy their freedom. They were required to surrender at once all arms and ammunition, and not to live or go within a certain distance of any arsenal, munitions factory, or other establishment named in the proclamation. Subject to these conditions, they were permitted to go about their business as usual.

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