63D CONGRESS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. J DOCUMENT
1st Session. No. 123.
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
THE SECRETARY OF WAR,
WITH A LETTER FROM THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, REPORT ON
PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION AND SURVEY OF CLEARWATER
HARBOR, FLA., FROM THE MOUTH OF THE ANCLOTE RIVER TO
THE CHANNEL FROM THE SOUTH END OF CLEARWATER HARBOR
INTO AND THROUGH BOCA CEIGA BAY, THENCE INTO TAMPA
JULY 2, 1913.-Referred to the Committee on Rivers and Harbors and ordered to be
printed, *ith illustration.
Washington, June 30, 1913.
The SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith a letter from the
Chief of Engineers, United States Army, dated 28th instant, together
with copies of reports from Capt. George R. Spalding, Corps of
Engineers, dated July 19, 1911, and Capt. J. R. Slattery, Corps of
Engineers, dated March 22, 1912, with map, on preliminary exami-
nation and survey, respectively, of Clearwater Harbor, Fla., made
by them in compliance with the provisions of the river and harbor act
approved February 27, 1911.
Very respectfully, LINDLEY M. GARRISON,
Secretary of War.
OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
Washington, June 28, 1913.
"From: The Chief of Engineers, Urnited States Army.
Tc: The Secretary of War.
Subject: Improvement of Clearwater Harbor, Fla.
1. There are submitted herewith, for transmission to Congress, re-
ports dated July 19, 1911, by Capt. George R. Spalding, Corps of
Engineers, on preliminary examination, and report dated March 22,
2 CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
1912, with map, by Capt. J. R. Slattery, Corps of Engineers, on survey
of Clearwater Harbor, Fla., from the mouth of the Anclote River to the
beginning of the channel now being constructed by the Government
from the south end of Clearwater Harbor into and through Boca
Ceiga Bay, thence into Tampa Bay, authorized by the river and
harbor act approved February 27, 1911.
2. Clearwater Harbor is a salt-water sound on the west coast of
Florida, about 28 miles north of Tampa Bay, with which it is con-
nected by a shallow inland waterway now being improved under a
project adopted in 1910, which provides fora channel 5 feet deep and
50 feet wide in protected reaches and 7 feet deep and 100 feet wide in
the more exposed portions near Tampa Bay. North of Clearwater
Harbor and about 14 miles distant is Anclote anchorage, from which
an 8-foot channel leads to the Gulf of Mexico, and a 6-foot channel
leads up the Anclote River to Sponge Harbor, and thence a 4-foot
channel leads to the bridge at Tarpon Springs. Channels through
Big and Little Passes of 8 feet and 6 feet depth, respectively, afford
direct connection between Clearwater Harbor and the Gulf. The
improvement now desired, as indicated by the item of law, is a
better channel from the mouth of the Anclote River to the beginning
of the approved channel from Clearwater Harbor to Tampa Bay; the
present boat route being winding and of only about 3.5 feet depth at
low water. The district officer estimates that such a channel, having
a depth of 6 feet and a width not less than 100 feet, will require about
6 miles length of dredging and will cost $37,000 for first construction
and $4,000 every two years thereafter for maintenance. For reasons
stated, he is of opinion that this improvement is worthy of being
undertaken by the United States, and in this opinion the division
3. These reports have been referred, as required by law, to the
Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors, and attention is invited to
the board's accompanying report of May 12, 1913. The board points
out thatb the proposed channel, which follows generally ;he deepest
line of water, would be located from 1,500 feet to over a mile from the
villages or settlements expected to be benefited, and the board does
not believe that these communities would find it to their advantage
to construct wharves or auxiliary channels leading out to the main
channel. The board states that there is not sufficient through com-
merce, present or prospective, to warrant the cost of improvement and
its maintenance, and it therefore expresses the opinion that it is inad-
visable at this time for the General Government to undertake the pro-
vision of a chaninel from the mouth of the Anclote River to Tampa
4. After due consideration of the above-mentioned reports, I con-
cur in general with the views of the Board of Engineers for Rivers and
Harbors, and therefore, in carrying out the instructions of Congress, I
report that the improvement by the United States of Clearwater
Harbor, Fla., from the mouth of the Anclote River to the beginning
of the channel now being constructed by the Government from the
south end of Clearwater Harbor into and through Boca Ceiga Bay,
thence into Tampa Bay, in the manner apparently desired by the
interests concerned, as described in the reports herewith, is not deemed
advisable at the present time.
W. H. BIXBY,
Chief of Engineers, United States Army.
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA. 3
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF ENGINEERS FOR RIVERS AND HARBORS
THE BOARD OF ENGINEERS FOR RIVERS AND HARBORS,
May 12, 1913.
To the CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, UNITED STATES ARMY:
1. Following favorable recommendations on report of preliminary
examination of Clearwater Harbor, Fla., from the Anclote River to
Tampa Bay, a survey has been made, and the district officer presents
a plan of improvement, shown on accompanying map, for a channel 6
feet deep and not less than 100 feet wide, estimated to cost $37,000.
In a subsequent report he submits an estimate for maintenance in
the sum of $4,000 every two years.
2. The district officer states that this through inland route ought
to be of considerable importance to towns along this line and, if
taken advantage of, might have a material effect on present rail
rates. There is at the present time a small amount of water-borne
commerce passing between Tarpon Springs and Tampa or St. Peters-
burg by the outside route, and it is thought this amount would be in-
creased if an inside route were provided. The district officer believes
the improvement is worthy of being undertaken by the United
States, and in this view the division engineer concurs.
3. Believing that the cost of first construction and subsequent
maintenance was high as compared with probable resulting benefits to
navigation, the board requested that interested parties be given an
opportunity of presenting their views in regard to the merits of this
case. This was done, and the board has received a number of com-
munications, which have been given consideration. A public hearing
was held in Tampa on April 11, 1913, with reference to a number of
improvements on the west coast of Florida, and interested parties
were given an opportunity of coming before the board in connection
with Clearwater Harbor at that time, but no one appeared. On
May 5, 1913, however, Hon. S. M. Sparkman, Member of Congress,
came before the board at its office in Washington in behalf of this
4. A channel as proposed should serve two purposes: (1) Through
commerce between Tampa Bay and Tarpon Springs, and (2) such
commerce as originates at the several towns along the route. The
district officer states that these towns would be benefited, and in-
terested parties have laid stress upon this phase of the subject. An
examination of the map will show that the waterway through which
this channel runs is very wide, ranging from 4,500 feet to 2 miles, and
that the channel which follows generally the deepest line of water is
from a minimum of about 1,500 feet to over a mile from any of the
villages or settlements expected to be benefited, with shallow water
between. Such a channel would be of little use to these communities,
unless connection therewith were made by means of auxiliary dredged
channels or by the construction of long piers. Such improvements
are in the nature of terminal facilities and should be provided by the
locality concerned. It is believed that th'e amount of business
tributary to these small towns is insufficient to induce them to do
this work. It seems probable, therefore, that the greater part of the
commerce originating in these villages would continue to go by rail
4 CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
rather than incur the expense of making suitable connections with
the channel or of lightering the produce thereto., It is believed,
therefore, that the extent of local benefit would prove disappointing,
and in the opinion of the board there is not sufficient through com-
merce, present or prospective, to warrant the cost of improvement
and its subsequent maintenance. The board, therefore, reports
that it is inadvisable at this time for the General Government to
undertake the provision of a channel from the mouth of the Anclote
River to Tampa Bay.
5. In compliance with law, the board reports that there are no
questions of terminal facilities, water power or other subjects which
could be coordinated with the project proposed, in such manner as
to render the improvement advisable in the interests of commerce
For the bpard:
WM. T. ROSSELL,
Colonel, Corps of Engineers,
Senior Member of the Board.
PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION OF CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
UNITED STATES ENGINEER OFFICE,
Jacksonville, Fla., July 19, 1911.
SIR: 1. In compliance with department letter dated April 7, 1911,
I have the honor to submit the following report on a preliminary
examination of Clearwater Harbor, Fla., from the mouth of the
Anclote River to the beginning of the channel now being constructed
by the Government from the south end of Clearwater Harbor into and
through Boca Ceiga Bay, thence into Tampa Bay, as authorized by
the river and harbor act of February 27, 1911.
2. General description of locality.-Clearwater Harbor is a salt-water
sound on the west coast of Florida about 28 miles north of Tampa Bay,
connected with that bay by a shallow inland waterway now being
improved under a project adopted June 25, 1910, which contem-
plated a channel 5 feet deep and 50 feet wide in protected localities,
and 7 feet deep and 100 feet wide in the more exposed portions near
Tampa Bay, at a total estimated cost of $59,000.
The money has all been appropriated; about one-half of the work
has been completed, and a satisfactory bid for the completion of the
work received and recommended, though contract has not yet been
let. From present progress it is thought that the proposed channel
will be opened by about May 15, 1912, the time of expiration of the
Clearwater Harbor is about 11 miles wide in an easterly and west-
erly direction and about 8 miles long in a northerly and southerly
direction. Its depths vary from 2 to 21 feet at mean low water, with
a rise and fall of tide of 1.8 feet. On the easterly side of Clearwater
Harbor is the mainland, commonly called "Pinellas Peninsula." On
the westerly side are a number of narrow sandy keys.
From the southern end of Clearwater Harbor, the beginning of the
waterway now being constructed to Tampa Bay, to the mouth of the
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA. 5
Anclote River is about 18 miles. Of this distance, 5 miles is in Clear-
water Harbor, 2 miles in St. Josephs Sound just north of that harbor,
and 11 miles through what is known as Anclote anchorage. Widths
throughout this waterway vary from 11 to 21 miles.
From Anclote anchorage an 8'-foot channel leads to the Gulf of
Mexico, and one of 6 feet, constructed by the United States under a
project adopted in 1889, leads up the Anclote River to Sponge Har-
bor, and thence a 4-foot channel leads to the bridge at Tarpon Springs.
From Anclote anchorage, leading south, the depths which appear to
be available from the examination are as follows: For a distance of
81 miles to a point off Sutherland in St. Josephs Bay, from 6 to 9 feet;
from this point for 2 miles to a point one-half mile north of the town
of Duneden, from 4 to 5 feet; thence to Duneden, 5 to 6 feet; thence
south 6 feet for a distance of three-fourths of a mile, when a sand bar
is encountered, over which there is nbt over 3 feet for a distance of
200 feet; thence to Clearwater Harbor there is a winding channel with
a depth of about 7 feet, and this or greater depths can be carried to
the channel now under construction.
3. Previous examinations or surveys.-No previous examination
has beemade of this proposed waterway except those made in
connection with it, as at Anclote River and Clearwater Harbor to
4. Improvement desired.-The general desire of the communities
located along this waterway is for a channel 6 feet deep and 100 feet
wide from the Anclote River to the lower end of Clearwater Harbor
to be used in connection with the Clearwater-Tampa Bay Channel
now nearing completion.
5. Commercial situation.-The following quotation is from the
report of Mr. J. G. Coxetter, inspector, who made the detailed exami-
The proposed waterway and the one under construction form a continuous inland
waterway from the port of Tampa along the west shore of Tampa Bay, and then fol-
lows along the west coast of Pinellas Peninsula, probably the most active and thickly
populated fruit and vegetable sections on the west coast of Florida. The towns of
arpon Springs, Sutherland, Ozona, Dunedin, Clearwater, and Bellair are all situ-
ated along the waterway, the first named being about 1 mile back from the shore
of Anclote Anchorage and directly on the Anclote River, the others being directly
on the shore of St. Josephs Sound and Clearwater Harbor. These towns are all rap-
idly growing, thriving communities, Tarpon Springs being probably the largest
sponge market in the world. The other towns are largely fruit and vegetable grow-
ing, packing, and shipping points. At Sutherland is the Sutherland Institute, a
coeducational school, with about 250 students. Bellair is a well-known winter
resort. The entire country is traversed by the Jacksonville to St. Petersburg main
line of the Atlantic Coast Line Railway, the southern terminus of which is St. Peters-
burg. From Tarpon Springs is a local railroad running east, making physical con-
nection with the Tampa Northern Railroad into Tampa.
On the west of the waterway are Anclote Island, Hog Island, and Sand Key, through
which are South Channel into Anclote Anchorage, with a least depth of 81 feet, and
Big and Little Passes into Clearwater Harbor, with a least depth of about 8 feet and 6
feet, respectively. Through the passes mentioned these towns carry on a considerable
business in small boats to Tampa via the Gulf of Mexico, but on account of the dangers
of the trip insurance is impossible and the regularity of service impracticable. With
the completion of the project now under way points as far north as the town of Clear-
water will have boat service to Tampa, where steamship connections to points both
north and west can be made. It is confidently believed that with the establishment
of such transportation lines a very material reduction of existing freight rates will
occur on both outgoing fruit and vegetables and all incoming freight from and to
points between the town of Clearwater and Tampa. In this reduction in freight rates
the communities between Clearwater and Tarpon Springs are very anxious to partici-
6 CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
pate, but before they can do so it will be necessary to extend the improvement of the
waterway northerly through the shoals already described in this report. Were such
improvements effected it would make possible the establishment of inland water
transportation lines from Tarpon Springs to Tampa, a distance by such inland water
route of about 75 miles. The communities situated along the portion of this route
now being improved are also very much interested in having the improvement
extended from the south end of Clearwater Harbor northward to the mouth of Anclote
River, for the reason that it will insure more complete boat service, owing to the
additional volume of commerce that would be offered.
The total volume of commerce, both land and water borne, for the year 1910 of the
several communities that would be affected by the improvement of the waterway
between Anclote River and the south end of Clearwater Harbor amounted to about
62,000 tons, and the amount of money paid on freight was-outgoing, about $57,000,
and incoming, about $71,000. With the improvement proposed it is reasonable to
assume that a reduction in existing incoming freight and outgoing fruit rates of at least
40 per cent will occur. On this basis, for the year 1910 alone, a saving of over $28,000
on incoming freight and $14,000 on outgoing fruit to the people of these communities,
would have been effected. At the present time but about 15 per cent of the total
commerce of this community is water borne, owing to the dangers of the outside
The natural wholesale market for the entire Pinellas- Peninsula is Tampa. It is
the only harbor where steamship connections to the north and west can be effected.
During the year 1910 Tarpon Springs shipped 400,000 pounds of sponge. Most of this
sponge is shipped to northern and western points via steamship lines out of Tampa.
The railway freight rates on sponge from Tarpon Springs to Tampa is 50 cents per 100
pounds. It is reasonable to assume that the rate on this article via inland water route
from Tarpon Springs to Tampa would not be over 25 cents per 100 pounds. At this
rate the saving in freight on sponge for the year 1910 alone would have been $1,000.
The following is a tabulated statement of the commercial statistics of the section
that would be affected by the improvement of the waterway in question:
Article. Amount in customary units. moshunt tn alue.
Fruit ........... ........................ 200,000 oxes........................ 14,000 $350,000
Vegetables................. .............. ......... ............ 600 30,000
Farm products........................ .................................... 4,000 80,000
Naval stores................... ..................................... 910 365,000
Sponge.................... ...... ..................................... 200 740,000
Fish ........ .......... ............................ ............. 6 900
Crate material.......................................................... ........ 2,500 41,500
Building m aterial....................... ....................................... 19,000 380,000
Fertilizer.......................... ................. ..... ............. 5,100 153,000
General merchandise ....................................................... 15,000 988,000
Total............................................ 61,316 3,028,400
On the above amounts about 15 per cent is water borne. There are two vessels
regularly engaged in the carrying trade.
Terminalfacilities.-At all of the points along the waterway between Anclote River
and the south end of Clearwater Harbor there are wharves which are open to the free
use of all. These wharves, with the exception of those at Ozona and Sutherland,
extend out to 6 feet, mean low water, or greater depth. At Tarpon Springs the wharf
and additional water frontage are owned by the municipality. At Ozona the wharf
is owned by the village society and, in addition, there is a riparian reservation of about
200 feet for public use. At Dunedin the public wharf is owned by the Dunedin
Yacht Club, in addition to which there are over 200 feet of abutting streets owned by
the municipality that are reserved for public use. At Clearwater the public wharf
is owned by the Clearwater Pier Co., and arrangements are now under way for the
the municipality to take title to it; there are also innumerable abutting streets the
riparian rights of which are reserved for public use. At none of these wharves are there
any mechanical appliances for the handling of freight. The transfer from water front
to railroad at the different points varies from 800 feet to 5,000 feet and is accomplished
by means of vehicles. The conditions described above as to the present and future
wharfage facilities are such as to preclude a monopoly of these facilities.
This waterway is tidal and there are no water-power conditions or situations existing,
nor would its improvement create any.
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA. 7
6. From the examination it appears that a very small expenditure
will extend an inland channel now being constructed by the Govern-
ment a distance of 18 miles into a territory producing and consuming
about 62,000 tons of freight per year, about 9,000 tons of which are
now handled by water in small coasting schooners and launches. It
is difficult, however, to say from an examination just what diffi-
culties may be met with, as rock is very apt to be found in unexpected
places and at unexpected depths on the west coast of Florida. Com-
plete borings will therefore be required to determine the cost of
improving this channel by eliminating bad turns and excavating at
shoals so as to make it an adequate extension of the one now building.
Being of the opinion that the work is a worthy one to undertake,
providing the cost is not too great, I recommend that a complete
survey be made to determine its cost. As the Coast and Geodetic
Survey charts along these. waterways were made years ago it is
believed that careful soundings should be made over the entire area.
The value of such a survey, even if no work is done, will be of great
aid to the existing navigation on these waters. It is estimated that
such a survey will cost $2,500.
Very respectfully, GEO. R. SPALDING,
Captain, Corps of Engineers.
The CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, UNITED STATES ARMY
(Through the Division Engineer).
OFFICE OF DIVISION ENGINEER,
Savannah, Ga., July 21, 1911.
1. Respectfully forwarded to the Chief of Engineers, United States
2. I agree with the district officer that on the showing made by the
preliminary examination the proposed route is worthy of a survey,
and I recommend an allotment of $2,500 to enable one to be made.
DAN C. KINGMAN,
Colonel, Corps of Engineers,
THE BOARD OF ENGINEERS FOR RIVERS AND HARBORS,
Washington, August 21, 1911.
1. Respectfully returned to the Chief of Engineers, United States
2. The act of June 25, 1910, adopted a project for the construction
of a waterway 5 feet deep and 50 feet wide from Clearwater Harbor
to Boca Ceiga Bay, and thence 7 feet deep and 100 feet wide to Tampa
Bay, affording an inside water route from Clearwater and intermedi-
ate points to Tampa. It is expected that this waterway will be opened
to commerce in May, 1912. The present investigation has in view
the extension of this waterway northward from the south end of Clear-
water Harbor to the mouth of Anclote River, a distance of about 18
miles. From Anclote Anchorage an 8-foot channel leads to the Gulf
of Mexico, a 6-foot channel leads up the Anclote River to Sponge
8 CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
Harbor, and thence a 4-foot channel to Tarpon Springs, which is
stated to be probably the largest sponge market in the world.
3. The commerce of the section to be benefited by the proposed
channel, is reported to amount to over 60,000 tons, valued at about
$3,0000000. It is anticipated that the waterway now being con-
structed from Clearwater to Tampa Bay will result in a material
reduction in freight rates, and in these benefits the communities
between Clearwater and Tarpon Springs desire to participate. The
district officer is of opinion that the extension of the waterway to
the mouth of Anclote River is an improvement worthy to be under-
taken by the United States, provided its cost is found to be reason-
able. Owing to the frequent outcropping of rock along this coast, it
will be necessary to make a complete survey with borings in order to
form a reliable estimate of the expense involved. Such a survey is
estimated to cost $2,500. The board concurs with the district officer
and division engineer in the opinion that the facts developed by the
preliminary examination justify the proposed survey, which is
For the board: WM. T. ROSSELL,
Colonel, Corps of Engineers,
Senior Member of the Board.
OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
Washington, September 1, 1911.
1. Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War.
2. This is a report on preliminary examination of Clearwater
Harbor, Fla., authorized by the river and harbor act of February
3. Inviting attention to the report of the Board of Engineers for
Rivers and Harbors in the preceding indorsement, I recommend
that a survey of the locality, as proposed, be authorized.
W. H. BIXBY,
Chief of Engineers, United States Army.
September 2, 1911.
Approved as recommended by the Chief of Engineers.
JOHN C. SCOFIELD,
Assistant and Chief Cleric,
(For the Secretary of War, in his absence.)
SURVEY OF CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
UNITED STATES ENGINEER OFFICE,
Jacksonville, Fla., March 22, 191S.
SIR: 1. In compliance with department letter- of September 7,
1911, I have the honor to submit the following report on a survey
of Clearwater Harbor, Fla., from the mouth of Anclote River to
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA. 9
the beginning of the channel now being constructed by the Gov-
ernment from the south end of Clearwater Harbor into and through
Boca Ceiga Bay, and thence into Tampa Bay, as authorized by act
of Congress approved February 27, 1911.
2. The survey was made under the immediate charge of Mr. W,
W. Fineren, junior engineer. The triangulation system established
by the Coast and Geodetic Survey was used as the framework of
the survey. A traverse was then run along the shore line, or near
the shore line, hung to the stations of this triangulation system,
and stations established approximately 300 feet apart. From these
stations offsets were made across the bay and ranges for soundings
established, the entire waterway being thus covered. Soundings
.were taken on these ranges at 10-second intervals by means of a
graduated rod. Every sixth sounding was located by a transit
reading from an instrument suitably located on shore. The sound-
ings covered the best water areas, as indicated by existing maps and
as ascertained from those familiar with the locality. Tidal obser-
vations were taken every hour of the day for a period of 28 days,
and the average of the mean low waters was taken as mean low
water, and all soundings were reduced to this datum. The mean
range of the tide is 1.8 feet. The shore line and soundings over
areas not covered by the survey were taken from the Coast and
Geodetic Survey Charts Nos. 177 and 178.
3. Borings were made approximately 50 feet apart along the line
of the channel indicated on the map of the survey submitted here-
Swith. The borings were taken on ranges and located on the ranges
by one transit reading. The borings are not shown, no rock having
been encountered above a depth of 9.2 feet below mean low water.
Rock was generally found at a little over 11 feet. The borings were
made without difficulty with a pointed steel rod. The material en-
countered consisted of a mixture of sand and mud, with occasionally
some shell and clay in it.
4. An effort was made to obtain current observations, but it was
found that the currents along the proposed waterway depended
almost entirely on the'wind. These observations are not shown, as
they would not indicate any regular current conditions.
S5. A map based on this survey is submitted herewith, on which
are indicated the cuts that would have to be made in order to pro-
vide a water route 6 feet deep and not less than 100 feet wide con-
necting the Anclote River with the channel previously dredged con-
necting Clearwater and Tampa. The proposed channel follows the
best existing water to the greatest extent possible without resorting
to an unduly tortuous channel. Cuts have been indicated where it
is thought they could be maintained at a minimum cost, care being
taken to avoid locations where strong cross currents from the inlets
might soon obliterate the dredged channels. On account of the
difficulty of keeping in a narrow channel in wide stretches of water
even when well buoyed, it is not believed that a channel narrower
than 100 feet should be contemplated. The estimated cost of the
dredging necessary to obtain such a channel is as follows:
For dredging 225,000 cubic yards of soft material at 15 cents ............... $33, 750
Engineering and contingencies, about 10 per cent ....................... 3, 250
Total.... _--------...---- --.... ............. .................. 37, 000
10 CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA.
6. The construction of this channel would complete a continuous
inland waterway from Tarpon Springs to Tampa or St. Petersburg.
There is at the present time a small amount of water-borne com-
merce passing between these points by the outside route, and there
is a possibility that if this additional work were done the amount of
water-borne commerce might materially increase and that a con-
siderable use of the waterway might follow for commercial purposes.
There are a number of small towns along the proposed waterway,
all dependent on a branch line of the Atlantic Coast Line Railway
for transportation facilities. Most of the produce of the country
could be delivered to Tampa by boat over such a waterway for ma-
terially less than it costs to move it by rail to that point. From
Tampa direct steamship connections are available with northern
7. Fifty-nine thousand dollars have already been expended in con-
structing the portion of the inland route between Tampa and Clear-
water, and in my opinion it is advisable for the United States to
complete this route, since if it does not do so the chances of any con-
siderable use being made of the work already accomplished will be
materially lessened. In view of the small amount of work involved,
the amount necessary for the entire work should be appropriated in
8. This through inland route ought to be of considereable impor-
tance to towns along this line, and if taken advantage of might have
a material effect on the present rail rates, and for this reason, as well
as the reason previously stated, the improvement is believed to be
worthy of being undertaken by the United States.
J. R. SLATTERY,
Captain, Corps of Engineers.
The CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, UNITED STATES ARMY.
[For report of the Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors on
survey see p. 3.]
LETTER OF JOHN K. CHEYNEY.
TARPON SPRINGS, FLA., June 19, 1912.
DEAR SIRS: I understand that your board has now under consideration the pro-
posed improvement of "Clearwater Harbor from the mouth of the Anclote River to
the beginning of the channel now being constructed by the Government from the
south end of Clearwater Harbor into and through Boca Ceiga Bay, thence to Tampa
Bay," the plan of improvement recommended by the district officer providing for a
channel 6 feet in depth and 100 feet in width at an estimated cost of $37,000.
I wish to respectfully urge upon your board the advisability of this improvement,
and to submit in support thereof such arguments and statements as seem to me would
warrant this expenditure, in the interest of commerce and navigation.
The section of country bordering on this waterway is now developing and building
up more rapidly than any other section of our State. The only way by which we can
get competing transportation rates is through coastwise steamships at Tampa. The
local rail rates between this coast and Tampa destroy the advantage of steamship rates
The necessity for an inside waterway is that our local coast harbors are not of suffi-
cient depth to permit steam or power vessels being used, that can safely take the out-
side course, and in addition thereto the distance would be less than half in running
the inside course, thereby cutting time, and consequently expense, in half.
There are many coast towns, large and small, along this route, and it is certain that
they will put on transportation vessels as soon as this waterway is opened up.
CLEARWATER HARBOR, FLA. 11
The keys or beaches along this route are being rapidly populated, notably Passa-
grille, a resort of considerable size. This waterway would be of inestimable value and
advantage to them.
The channel from the south end of Clearwater Harbor into Boca Ceiga Bay has not
been completed or opened up into Boca Ceiga Bay, therefore can not be used at all,
and consequently could not indicate the merits of this proposition.
In this connection please permit me to mention my own experience. I am the
owner of the Tarpon Springs Lumber Co. and mills, and furnish much of the lumber
used along this coast. I have been shipping a lighter load (about 40,000 feet) weekly
to Passagrille, Boca Ceiga Bay, and vicinity.
This'lighter is towed by a power boat and has to be taken outside and find harbor
in the passes in case of rough weather. On our last trip they could not make a harbor
and the lighter went on the beach and almost the entire cargo was lost. The run-
ning time, without considering the risk, in making this outside trip adds to the cost
of this lumber $3 per 1,000 feet. It could be transported through the inside route at
a cost of $1 per 1,000 feet. The above instance, although personal, seems to me to
fairly illustrate conditions that must be similar in all other interests and industries
that would be affected by the improvement of this waterway.
Very respectfully, yours,
"JNO. K. CHEYNEY.
The BOARD OF ENGINEERS FOR RIVERS AND HARBORS.
LETTER OF THE TAMPA-SARASOTA TRANSPORTATION CO.
TAMPA-SARASOTA TRANSPORTATION CO.,
Tampa, Fla., June 21, 1912.
GENTLEMEN: I am in receipt of yours of the 18th instant relative to the construction
of a channel 6 feet deep and 100 feet wide in Clearwater Harbor and through Boca
Ceiga Bay, at an estimated cost of $37,000, and I regret to note that your honorable
board are in doubt as to the advisability of constructing this channel, owing to the un-
developed condition of the country and lack of commerce along this route. And in this
connection I beg leave to state that the infrequent use of this route is due entirely to the
inconvenience of the trip, owing to the lack of a channel and sufficient water in which
to operate boats of a size required to take care of the business.
There are several villages located adjacent to the proposed channel, as well as a great
many farms and orange groves, and the citizens of this section are greatly inconven-
ienced in the marketing of their products, owing to insufficient transportation facilities.
I am of the opinion, and feel safe in saying that with the construction of this proposed
channel the traffic over this route would increase 400 per cent within 12 months' time
from the completion of the channel.
I further believe that this increase in traffic would continue at the same ratio for the
next five years, as there is a great deal of undeveloped land in this section lying ad-
jacent to the proposed channel which would, with proper transportation facilities, in a
short time be in a high state of cultivation, owing to the fact that these lands are the
most fertile and productive of any land in this section of the country. With the com-
pletion of this channel it would, in my opinion, become necessary at once to operate a
daily line of steamers from Tampa to Tarpon Springs, touching at St. Petersburg,
Passagrille, Seminole Anona, Belle Air, Clearwater, Dunedin, Ozona, and Tarpon
Springs and, as this is one of the greatest orange-growing and trucking districts of this
section, as well as a great winter resort for tourists, would in a very short time become a
very popular route and prove a paying one to the operators.
I have taken this matter up with some of the representative citizens of this section
and Clearwater, and I am requesting them to write to your honorable board and set
forth the facts in the case, and show as nearly as possible the great need of such im-
provement, as well as the great good it will do in the way of developing this section of
the country. And I trust that, with my efforts and that of others, we will succeed in
convincing your honorable board of the necessity of this channel and of the great con-
venience it would prove to the people of this section. If I can be of any service to your
honorable board in obtaining data or otherwise, I will be pleased to have you call on
me, and in the meantime I beg to remain,
Yours, very truly, JOHN SAVARESE,
The BOARD OF ENGINEERS FOR RIVERS AND HARBORS.