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 Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Change in government and economic...
 Development of natural resourc...
 Congressional legislation
 Fiscal
 The Virgin Islands Co.
 Homesteading
 Tourist and winter resident...
 Urban housing, emergency conservation...
 Nonfederal projects and road...
 Health and sanitation
 Education
 Public welfare and agricultural...
 The Virgin Islands cooperative...
 Public works department, normal...
 Inspection of water supply, harbor...


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Annual report of the Governor of the Virgin Islands
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00015459/00011
 Material Information
Title: Annual report of the Governor of the Virgin Islands
Alternate Title: Annual report - the Governor of the Virgin Islands
Portion of title: Annual report of the Governor of the Virgin Islands to the Secretary of the Interior
Annual report, Virgin Islands
Physical Description: v. : tab. ; 24 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Virgin Islands of the United States -- Governor
Publisher: for sale by the Supt. of Docs., U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
Place of Publication: Washington
Creation Date: 1935
Frequency: annual
regular
 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Virgin Islands of the United States   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
serial   ( sobekcm )
Spatial Coverage: United States Virgin Islands
 Notes
Numbering Peculiarities: Report covers fiscal year.
General Note: Title varies slightly.
General Note: Vols. for 1925/26 issued as Senate document 170, U.S. 69th Congress, 2d session.
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 01235215
lccn - 26027791
issn - 0363-3438
System ID: UF00015459:00011

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Page i
    Title Page
        Page ii
    Table of Contents
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Change in government and economic improvement
        Page 1
    Development of natural resources
        Page 2
    Congressional legislation
        Page 3
    Fiscal
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
    The Virgin Islands Co.
        Page 7
    Homesteading
        Page 8
        Page 9
    Tourist and winter resident trade
        Page 10
    Urban housing, emergency conservation work, and organization of treasury accounting facilities
        Page 11
    Nonfederal projects and road program
        Page 12
    Health and sanitation
        Page 13
    Education
        Page 14
    Public welfare and agricultural experiment station and vocational school
        Page 15
    The Virgin Islands cooperatives
        Page 16
    Public works department, normal activities, St. John, and Marine corps air base
        Page 17
    Inspection of water supply, harbor improvements, and conclusion
        Page 18
        Page 19
Full Text




























45-
V8I~s-


UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

f ANNUAL REPORT OF
THE GOVERNOR
OF-THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

FOR FISCAL YEAR ENDED JUNE 30, 1936






UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
HAROLD L. ICKES, Secretary
THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
LAWRENCE W. CRAMER, Governor




ANNUAL REPORT

OF THE

GOVERNOR OF

THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

FOR THE

FISCAL YEAR ENDED JUNE 30, 1936


UNITED STATES
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON: 19386


For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C. - -. Price 10 cents














TABLE OF CONTENTS


Page
Change in governorship .------------------------------------..... 1
Economic improvement--.------------------.------.---... ..----- 1
Indices of upward trend-----------------------------....-.. --..... 2
Development of natural resources---------- ------------..... __ --...- 2
Government development_---------------------. ---------... ..- 2
Private development---------------------------------...--... 2
Congressional legislation --------------------------------------.. 3
The Organic Act ----------------------------------------..... 3
Peal property tax ------------------------.--.------.---..- 3
Coastwise laws-----------------------------... ---------..... 4
Fiscal_.-----------------------------------------.----.-- -.... 4
Total revenues-..-.--.... .--------------------------.-.....- 4
Income taxes----------------------------------------------. 4
Customs dues------------ -------------------------------.... 5
Cost of municipal governments------------------------.------- 5
Reduction of Federal deficit appropriations----------------------- 5
St. Thomas Harbor board_....------------..------ _-----.---- 5
Bunker coal and fuel-oil imports .----------------------------- 6
Federal Emergency Relief------------------------------------- 6
Works Progress Administration projects----------------.-------- 6
Public Works Administration projects--------------------------- 7
The Virgin Islands Co _----------- ------_---_--------------- 7
Objectives ------------------------------------------------ 7
The year's operations-------_-----.--------------------_-- 8
Homesteading ------------- ----------------------.-------------- 8
Tourist and winter resident trade ---------------------------------_ 10
Bluebeard Castle Hotel ------------------------------------- 10
Private operations ----- ----------------------------- 10
Treasury relief art project ---------------------------------- 10
Survey of Federal archives -------------------------------------- 11
Urban housing -----------------------------------___.__ --.--. 11
Emergency Conservation work -----------------------------------. 11
Organization of Treasury accounting facilities --------------------- 11
Non-Federal projects------------------------------------ 12
Road program -_----------------------------------------------_ 12
Health and sanitation --------------- ---------------------------- 13
Infant mortality -------------------------------------------- 13
Death rate--------------------- ------------------------- 13
Infantile paralysis ------------------------------------------ 13
Malaria .------------------------------------------------. 13
Typhoid fever- ----------_----------__ ------------------. 13
General- .------------------------------------------------- 13
Sanitation ------------------------------------------ 14
Investigation ---------------------------------_------------_ 14

U'1







IV TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page

Education.---------------------------------------------------- 14
Public welfare--------------------------------------------------- 15
Agricultural experiment station and vocational school------------------ 15
St. Croix ----------------------- ---------------- 15
Vocational school------------------------------------------- 16
St. Thomas------------------------------------------ 16
The Virgin Islands cooperatives ---------------.-------------------. 16
Public Works department---------.------------- ------------------ 17
Normal activities ---------------------------------------------- 17
St. John ------------------------------------------------------ 17
Marine Corps air base----.------------------------------------.. 17
Inspection of water supply --------------------------------------- 18
Harbor improvements--.--.---------------.--------------.----. 18
Conclusion---------------------........ --------------------- 18














ANNUAL REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF
THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

GOVERNMENT HOUSE,
ST. THOMAS, VIRGIN ISLANDS OF THE UNITED STATES,
September 1, 1936.
The honorable the SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR,
Washington, D. C.
SIR: Pursuant to section 20 of the Organic Act of the Virgin
Islands of the United States, approved June 22, 1936, I have the
honor to submit the following annual report of the transactions of
the Government of the Virgin Islands for the fiscal year ended
June 30, 1936.
CHANGE IN GOVERNORSHIP

On August 31, 1935, Lawrence W. Cramer, who had been Lieu-
tenant Governor of St. Croix since March 18, 1931, assumed duty as
Governor of the Virgin Islands, vice Dr. Paul M. Pearson, resigned.

ECONOMIC IMPROVEMENT

The program of economic rehabilitation, developed and prose-
cuted vigorously during the past 3 years, has resulted in marked
economic improvement. The upward trend reported in the 2 previous
fiscal years has continued during this year and has become
increasingly apparent.
In 3 short years a general attitude of despondency and uncertainty
has changed to one of courage, hopefulness, and purposefulness. The
rehabilitation program established by the Federal Government has
been responsible to a very large degree for this change in attitude.
This program of social, economic, and industrial improvement in-
cludes homestead and housing projects, development of agriculture
and of the sugar and rum industries, promotion of tourist and
winter resident possibilities, the construction of roads and highways,
improvement of sanitation and water supplies.








2 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

INDEXES OF UPWARD TREND

The following indexes reveal the upward trend:

Fiscal years

1933 1934 1935 1936

Acres in cane cultivation-------------------------- 4,686 4,505 5,385 6,785
Tons of sugar produced ------------------------------- 4,125 4,088.42 1, 670.25 3,730
Gallons of rum produced ---..-..--------...... .----..--------70,000 245, 000 239,033
Arrivals of ocean-going ships in St. Thomas:
Number of ships -------------------------------- 469 498 549 647
Tonnage ... ---------- ----------------1,849,255 1,938,637 2,568,452 3,017,682
Pilotage paid ......---------- ------------.. $8, 283 $9,303 $10,956 $13,850
Value of bunker coal and oil imported ---------- $341,182 $339, 259 $366, 267 $600, 776
Sale of native products by Virgin Islands cooperatives- $4, 578 $9, 330 $23, 371 $26, 213
Savings deposits .. --------.-----------...--.-- $762,993 $754,708 $533,009 $825,621
Building permits in St. Thomas:
Number --------------------------------------- 34 20 21 30
Value ..-----------.-------------------- $9, 420 $6,680 $17,165 $26,865

DEVELOPMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

GOVERNMENT DEVELOPMENT

The sugar industry, the most important natural resource of St.
Croix, has been wisely fostered and developed by the establishment
of the Virgin Islands Co. The effects of the rehabilitation program
are most directly evident in the improvement of the sugar business
of St. Croix.
The improvement of harbor activities in St. Thomas, the only
important natural resource of St. Thomas, is due in some measure
to the erection of an attractive and suitable hotel for tourists and
to the suspension of ships' dues on bunker coal and fuel oil imported
for bunkering of ships.
To foster the economic development of St. Thomas, its harbor must
be developed and improved. A preliminary engineering survey is
now being made by the United States Army engineers to determine
the advisability and the cost of deepening the harbor channel, extend-
ing the anchorage area, and constructing a graving dock.

PRIVATE DEVELOPMENT

Of great significance is the fact that private capital, even though
of small proportions as yet, has begun to enter the Virgin Islands
and to assist in their economic improvement. A rum company,
financed by American capital, has been established in St. Thomas. A
tourist development company, financed by local and foreign interests,
has taken over a very desirable tract of land in St. John for the
purpose of establishing a winter resident resort. Several Americans
have purchased tracts of land in St. Thomas and St. John with a







REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS


view to similar development. A large tract of land is under option
in St. Croix to an American capitalist interested in the agricultural
development of that island.

CONGRESSIONAL LEGISLATION
THE ORGANIC ACT

The most important legislative event in recent years was the
enactment by the Congress of a new Organic Act for the Virgin
Islands which became law upon its approval on June 22, 1936. For
many years efforts had been made to secure an organic act to replace
the act of March 3, 1917, which established what was known as the
temporary government of the Virgin Islands. That act was hastily
drawn and left many legal obscurities.
The new act establishes a form of government on familiar Ameri-
can lines, while retaining as much of the existing political arrange-
ments as are compatible with American principles. The respective
powers of the executive, legislative, and the judiciary departments are
clearly defined, thus removing a previous source of friction. Wholly
elected legislatures take the place of legislatures previously partly
elected by the qualified voters and partly appointed by the Governor.
The Governor's veto power is changed from an absolute veto to a
suspensive veto which may be overruled by two-thirds vote of the
legislatures. A legislative assembly is provided to enact legislation
applicable to the Virgin Islands as a whole as distinguished from
the local legislative powers of the municipal councils. Provision is
made for the establishment of universal suffrage beginning in 1938 to
replace the existing limited franchise based on income and property
qualifications. In general, greater local autonomy and a more demo-
cratic form of government are provided. The act has met with
universal local approval.

REAL PROPERTY TAX
The enactment by the Congress of an act to establish an assessed
valuation real property tax in the Virgin Islands, approved May
26, 1936, has removed a source of much dissatisfaction. Archaic and
inequitable tax laws are replaced by a new tax, uniform in its appli-
cation, equitable in its effects, and reasonable in its rate. By the
same act the properties taken over by the Virgin Islands Co. or by
Sthe United States and used for business purposes have been made
subject to local taxes, thus greatly improving the prospects for in-
creased local revenues for the municipalities and removing another
source of dissatisfaction.








4 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

COASTWISE LAWS

By an amendment to section 21 of the Merchant Marine Act of
1920 approved April 16, 1936, a grave danger to the vitally im-
portant bunkering business of the port of St. Thomas was mitigated.
Under this amendment, the Virgin Islands are exempted from the
application of the coastwise shipping laws until the President finds
that there are adequate American shipping facilities available and
by executive proclamation makes the law applicable to the Virgin
Islands.
By the enactment of this constructive legislation, the Congress has
done much to assist the Virgin Islands and to make possible their
improvement politically and economically.

FISCAL

The revenues of the municipality of St. Thomas and St. John dur-
ing the fiscal year 1935-36 exceeded by 9.97 percent the revenues of
the preceding fiscal year, while the revenues of the municipality of
St. Croix were 6 percent less than in the previous fiscal year, due to
the operations of the Virgin Islands Co.

Total revenues

1933 1934 1935 1936

Municipality of-
St. Thomas and St. John..... -------------- $86, 524 $105,898 $146,650 $161,271
St. Croix----.. --........................---------- 107,440 119,663 136,266 127,167

Income-tax collections in the municipality of St. Thomas and St.
John exceeded 1935 collections by 25.15 percent, while in the mu-
nicipality of St. Croix income-tax receipts decreased 52 percent.
Income taxes

1933 1934 1935 1936

Municipality of-
St. Thomas and St. John.-------................------ $5,047 $7,198 $14,572 $18,237
St. Croix ---------------......--------------------- 3, 337 6, 231 14,397 6,904

In the municipality of St. Thomas and St. John receipts from cus-
toms dues exceeded by 39.35 percent those of the preceding fiscal year,
and in the municipality of St. Croix receipts from import duty were
greater by 27.53 percent.







REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS 5

Customs dues

1933 1934 1935 1936

Municipality of-
St. Thomas and St. John.----- --.----- .....--- $4, 758 $7, 590 $9, 825 $13, 691
St. Croix..---- -------- ------------------ 7,678 13, 212 16,743 21,352

The fiscal improvement in the municipality of St. Croix is less
apparent than is that in the municipality of St. Thomas and St.
John. This is due to the fact that the Federal Government has
purchased, for its agency the Virgin Islands Co., large tracts of land
and removed them from the tax rolls. This condition was for-
tunately remedied at the last session of Congress, and it is confidently
expected that the municipality of St. Croix will increase its local
revenues so that eventually no further Federal contributions will be
necessary to maintain its purely local activities.

COST OF MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENTS

The cost of the municipal government of St. Thomas and St. John
was budgeted at $244,972, including expenditure of internal-revenue
tax funds for street improvements. The United States contributed a
deficit appropriation of $7iI J110, which was later supplementedby a
deficiency appropriation of $25,000, to offset the loss of municipal
revenue occasioned by nonpayment of taxes on properties purchased
by the United States and operated by the Virgin Islands Co.

REDUCTION OF FEDERAL DEFICIT APPROPRIATIONS

The United States contributions to the cost of operation of the
municipal governments have been reduced materially.

1933 1934 1935 1936

Municipality of-
St. Tho a St. J .......-------------............. .... -112.. 98,500 $90,000 $80,000
St. Croix....------------------------------- ,.:. 98,00" 9'4,9 95,000

ST. THOMAS HARBOR BOARD

St. Thomas Harbor reflected a continued healthy activity as shown
by the following figures:

1933 1934 1935 1936

Total revenues..--..........------ ----------- $25,144 $28,018 $26,860 $27,902
Operating surplus---------.... ---- --------.......... 9,106 11,875 9,357 9, 310


98294-36---2







6 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

Bunker coal and fuel-oil imports

Calendar years

1932 1933 1934 1935

Tons of coal.....-----------------...---.----------------.. 64,699 87,724 26,267 60,948
Value .....---------------------------------------- $180, 680 $338, 912 $139, 048 $335, 214
Gallons of oil............-- ......-----.. ---... -- ... 4, 997,532 4,094 11,432,703 12,488, 736
Value-...............--------------------------- $106,502 $347 $227,219 $265,562

The increase in 3 years of 38 percent in the number of ships and
of "68 percent in the tonnage of ships calling in the harbor of St.
Thomas is of vital importance to that island, whose sole dependence
for economic development centers in its harbor. In that period the
value of coal and oil imported for bunker purposes increased by 76
percent. Every effort should be directed toward developing the
safety, convenience, and the facilities of the harbor, so that an in-
creasing share of reviving world shipping may be attracted to it.
It is believed that no great engineering difficulties would be experi-
enced in deepening the entrance channel and in increasing the anchor-
age basin. Both of these are essential to facilitate the present ton-
nage entering the harbor. The erection of a graving dock would
undoubtedly attract additional tonnage to it and would constitute
an important step forward in the economic development of the
island.
FEDERAL EMERGENCY RELIEF

Federal Emergency Relief funds totaling $124,000 for continuing
relief and $2,000 for administrative expenses were made available
during the year. These were allotted and expended for work-relief
projects. A very small part of this amount was allocated for direct
relief.
WORKS PROGRESS ADMINISTRATION PROJECTS

Funds were made available under the Works Progress Administra-
tion program as follows:
Continuation and extension of homesteading --------------------$151, 200
Reconstruction of roads_------------ ---------- ---------- 192,000
Improvement and extension of hotel facilities ------------_ 91, 400
Administrative expenses--------- --- ---25,000

Total_---------------------------- -459, 600
Obligations against these funds to June 30 totaled $228,854.







REPORT OF THE GOT-ERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS 7

PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION PROJECTS

New allotments to the Virgin Islands from Public Works funds
totaled $1,072,264. Of this amount $1,000,000 was appropriated for
continuation of rehabilitation of the sugar and rum industries in
St. Croix, and the balance for Federal repair and reconstruction
projects, including $48,100' for reconstruction of the Government
house in St. Croix, the third floor of which was destroyed by fire.
Allotments for non-Federal public-works projects were made as
follows:
Street and water supply, St. Thomas--------------------------- $20, 000
Drains and sewers, St. Thomas------------------------------- 50,000
Drains and water supply, St. Croix-------------------------- 41,939

Total---------- ------------------- ---- 111 939
The first grant represented 45 percent of the total estimated cost
of the project, the remaining 55 percent having been appropriated
by the municipality of St. Thomas and St. John. The other two
grants were on the basis of 100 percent.

THE VIRGIN ISLANDS CO.

OBJECTIVES

The outstanding activity in the Virgin Islands under the National
Recovery program is the Virgin Islands Co., a Government-owned
corporation, established in 1934 for the purpose of relieving perma-
nently the widespread and chronic unemployment of a stranded com-
munity without capital resources through the industrial development
of the islands in general and through the rehabilitation of agricul-
ture and of the sugar and rum industries of St. Croix in particular.
The National Industrial Recovery funds, expended for the develop-
ment of the Virgin Islands Co., are an investment in the major
natural resources of the island of St. Croix, replacing Danish capital
which withdrew from the sugar industry of St. Croix in 1930 leaving
the island of St. Croix in a desperate economic situation.
This investment of Federal funds was made only after years of
unsuccessful efforts to interest private American capital in the re-
habilitation of the sugar industry of St. Croix.
While furnishing relief employment to the great majority of un-
employed workers of the island, the company has accumulated large
inventories of growing sugarcane and a large supply of rum of the
finest quality. It has rehabilitated fields and factories. It is pro-
viding adequate and comfortable housing for its laborers. It has
increased labor wages by 50 percent since its inception.







8 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

It is confidently expected that when the Virgin Islands Co. markets
its products it will be able to continue its operations with profit and
without drain on the United States Treasury. Further, its operations
will, in a relatively short time, make the island of St. Croix eco-
nomically and fiscally self-supporting for the first time since it has
come under the sovereignty of the United States. Also, congressional
action will be sought to permit the use of the profits of the company
to carry the costs of a social security program for the Virgin Islands
(which are excluded from the benefits of the National Social Security
Act) to pay profit-sharing bonuses to workers employed by the com-
pany and to the 1,500 large and small private growers of sugarcane
who sell their cane to the company for grinding in its mills.

THE YEAR'S OPERATIONS
Notable forward strides have been made during the past fiscal
year. One thousand and twelve acres of land were recovered from
bush, bringing the total of such recovered land to 2,938 acres. Seven
hundred and eighty-nine additional acres were put into cultivation,
bringing the total of new acreage put into cultivation by the Virgin
Islands Co. to 1,604 acres.
The island of St. Croix whose most fertile land had grown up
in bush is again resuming its former claim to distinction as the
Garden of the West Indies, due primarily to the activities of the
Virgin Islands Co.
An average employment of 1,116 persons has substantially met the
problem of unemployment in St. Croix.
A total of 239,033 gallons of rum were produced. An inventory
of 465,966 gallons of rum is being aged preparatory to being marketed.
An active program of housing construction for workers employed
in the fields and factories of the company has been carried forward;
15 new village housing units accommodating 38 families and 8 single
persons, and 2 village community houses have been completed.
Twenty-four old village houses have been reconstructed to accommo-
date 17 additional families. In various stages of completion are 28
additional units planned to accommodate 66 families and 32 single
persons.
The reconditioning of one sugar mill is nearly completed. A con-
tract for the reconditioning of the Bethlehem sugar factory, the
largest on the island, has recently been made.

HOMESTEADING

Next to the Virgin Islands Co., the most fundamental recovery
project in the Virgin Islands is the homesteading program. In-







REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS


augurated in 1932, it is gradually transforming an unstable agri-
cultural population of field laborers into a group of small holders.
Under an easy amortization plan, these homesteaders are acquiring
possession of plots of land averaging 6 acres each with comfortable
small houses which have been constructed thereon. In many cases
these small holders were renters of private land, paying from $5
to $12 per annum per acre which is in excess of the amount now paid
annually as amortizing rental for homestead plots. Others were
agricultural laborers earning from 30 to 60 cents a day when fortunate
enough to secure employment.
Since the summer of 1932, 3,639 acres of land have been purchased
for homestead projects in the Virgin Islands. Of this area, 215 acres
were transferred to the Navy Department or reserved for use of the
United States Marine Corps for airports in St. Thomas and in St.
Croix. Of the remaining 3,424 acres, 1,569 are contracted to 268
homesteaders, and approximately 1,165 acres, including 1,005 acres
purchased during this year, are being cleared, surveyed, and put in
readiness for allotment to approximately 105 additional homesteaders.
The balance of the land includes roads, watershed areas, shore fronts,
community reserves, and uncultivatable areas.
There have been completed 64 new or reconstructed homestead
houses of stone or concrete. Forty-seven additional houses are now
under construction or in preparation for construction.
The gross expenditures chargeable to the Virgin Islands homestead
project from 1932 to 1936 are $270,015. Property valued at $13,280
was transferred for the use of the United States Marine Corps, leav-
ing a net expenditure properly chargeable to homesteading of $256,-
735. Principal repayments have been made in the sum of $14,410.
Interest and rental payments have been made in the sum of $8,937.
Against the net chargeable cost of $242,325 (total chargeable cost
of $256,735, less principal repayments of $14,410) there stands an
inventory of $227,352. The operating loss of $14,973 covers 4
years' cost of administration and supervision, depreciation, and uncol-
lectibles, This loss is offset by a credit of $8,937 for interest and
rentals paid to the United States Treasury. The net loss of $6,036
may properly be said to be the total cost to the United States Govern-
ment of establishing 268 homesteaders and assisting them for a
period of 4 years.
The success of the project is evidenced by the following factors:
(1) Less than 15 percent of all homesteaders have abandoned their
plots or have been evicted for failure to work or to pay installments.
(2) The 268 homesteaders now on the land have paid 95 percent
of all installments and interest due.







10 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

(3) Some homesteaders have paid installments for several years
in advance.
(4) Most of their land is now in cultivation.
(5) All land, cultivation, and house payments this year have taken
less than 35 percent of the homesteaders' gross income.
(6) Their net land income has averaged about 50 percent more
than they could have earned as laborers.
Many homesteaders have had time and opportunity to earn out-
side wages. The individual homesteaders have gained greatly by
this program, the community has benefited, and the cost to the
Federal Government has been negligible.

TOURIST AND WINTER RESIDENT TRADE
BLUEBEARD CASTLE HOTEL
The program inaugurated by the Government in 1934 for the pro-
motion of tourist and winter resident possibilities in St. Thomas by
the construction and operation of the Bluebeard Castle Hotel has
proved highly successful. This hotel has operated at capacity
throughout the winter season, and over 100 prospective guests had to
be turned away because of lack of space. Improvements and exten-
sions now under construction will increase the capacity of this hotel
by 60 percent.
Privately operated hotels were filled to capacity during the winter
season. The demand for accommodations, not only at hotels, but
for residences and cottages, was greatly in excess of available space.
The most imperative need is for the purchase of a tract of land,
including one of the desirable beaches of the island, on which a series
of low-cost cottages can be erected and completely furnished for
occupancy by winter residents. Difficulties in connection with the
purchase of suitable land have delayed the undertaking of this project
by the Government.
PRIVATE OPERATIONS
A tourist development company has been organized and has pur-
chased an 800-acre estate on the island of St. John with a view to con-
structing cottages thereon. This company has inaugurated a daily
boat service between St. Thomas and St. John to assist in the develop-
ment of St. John.

TREASURY RELIEF ART PROJECT
Late in the fiscal year, the Treasury relief art project was extended
to the Virgin Islands. Opportunity has been afforded five American
artists to paint the almost unlimited number of attractive subjects






REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS 11

available in the Virgin Islands. The paintings will be exhibited
in various galleries in the United States, and will undoubtedly be
of great value in attracting visitors to the islands.

SURVEY OF FEDERAL ARCHIVES

Funds have been appropriated for an archives project with a view
to making a survey of historical documents now scattered in the
various Government offices, to preserve those of importance, and to
prepare information of historical value and of general interest
concerning the islands.'

URBAN HOUSING

The Housing Division of the Federal Emergency Administration
of Public Works is constructing three housing projects, one in each
of the towns of the islands. In St. Thomas the program contemplates
the construction of 30 buildings with 134 rooms, divided into 16
one-room, 47 two-room, and 8 three-room units. In Christiansted 15
buildings with 60 rooms divided into 30 two-room units are to be
provided. In Frederiksted 20 buildings with a total of 80 rooms
divided into 4 one-room, 32 two-room, and 4 three-room units are
being constructed.

EMERGENCY CONSERVATION WORK

This program consists of two 100-man camps, one located in the
island of St. Thomas and one in the island of St. Croix. Among the
numerous and beneficial projects which have been carried on are the
reconstruction of a scenic road in St. Thomas, the development of
adequate recreation areas in and adjacent to the three towns of the
islands, and reforestation, fire control, and soil-erosion control
activities.

ORGANIZATION OF TREASURY ACCOUNTING
FACILITIES

In November 1935, pursuant to Presidential Executive Order No.
7034, dated May 6, 1935, the Treasury Department of the United
States undertook the work of purchasing, disbursing, and account-
ing for projects under the Emergency Relief Appropriation Act
of 1935. The Treasury Department's organization consists of an
accountant-in-charge, a State procurement officer, a deputy State
procurement officer, a disbursing clerk, and an assistant disbursing
clerk.






12 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

NONFEDERAL PROJECTS

The Federal Emergency Administration of Public Works has made
available to the municipality of St. Thomas and St. John a grant of
$20,000, representing 45 percent of the total cost of a project to
repair, improve, and extend the salt-water flushing system in the
city of St. Thomas and to widen and pave with bituminous macadam
surfacing the streets within the city limits. To this allotment the
municipality has added $24,444 from internal revenue tax receipts,
the total estimated cost of the project being $44,444.
Late in the fiscal year, 100 percent grants of Federal funds were
allocated to the municipality of St. Thomas and St. John in amount
of $50,000 for construction of surface drains and sewage-disposal sys-
tem improvements, and to the municipality of St. Croix in amount
of $41,939 for construction of water supply and surface drain im-
provements. The St. Thomas project will consist of the improve-
ment and enlargement of the present salt-water flushing and fire-
protection systems. In St. Croix surface drains will be reconstructed
and a salt-water service for fire protection and flushing will be
installed.
ROAD PROGRAM

To provide scenic roadways which will add to the attractiveness
of the islands to tourists and winter residents, to construct and re-
construct economically important highways in a way to reduce fu-
ture maintenance costs, and to increase employment, an appropriation
of $192,000 was made available from Works Progress Administra-
tion funds to improve, rebuild, and construct roads in the Virgin
Islands.
In the island of St. Thomas the project consists of rebuilding, re-
grading, and paving with asphaltic macadam 4 miles of two-lane
paved highway, and constructing 15 miles of new dirt road along the
north mountain side. Four miles of dirt country roads will also be
regraded, surfaced, and drained.
In St. John the work consists of clearing of vegetation, construc-
tion of culverts, opening of drains, and grading extended sections
of trails which are the only roadways in that island.
In the island of St. Croix, the centerline highway between the
towns of Christiansted and Frederiksted is being improved for prac-
tically its entire length of 15 miles by resurfacing with limestone
macadam on the old foundation and then surface treating the entire
distance with an asphaltic oil.
This program will provide employment for an average of 350
persons through June 30, 1937.







REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS 13

HEALTH AND SANITATION

INFANT MORTALITY

There has been a significant rise in infant mortality, due largely
to intestinal complaints. The infant mortality rate of 170.5 per
thousand children born alive during the calendar year 1935 is the
highest on record since 1928 when the rate was 213.8. Corrective
sanitation measures were instituted promptly, and it is encouraging
to note that during the period January to June 1936 the tentative
infant mortality rate was reduced to 96.4 per thousand.

DEATH RATE

The death rate for the calendar year 1935 of 22.4 per thousand
population is the highest on record since 1928 when the rate was 25.1.
This increase is attributed to the high infant mortality which in-
fluenced the general mortality rate.

INFANTILE PARALYSIS
Two cases of infantile paralysis were reported in the island of St.
Thomas. While it was not possible to establish the source of these
cases, prompt precautionary measures were instituted, and all sus-
picious persons were isolated.

MALARIA

Malaria continues to be under complete control. In St. Croix 18
cases were reported, all infected off the island. Two cases were re-
ported from St. John and none in St. Thomas.

TYPHOID FEVER

Eight cases of typhoid fever were reported in St. Croix, the first
outbreak since 1933. All school children were again vaccinated, as
well as hundreds of adults. The exact source of infection and its
method of transmission have not been discovered, although thorough
investigations were conducted of milk and water sources and fly
breeding.
GENERAL

Outside the sporadic occurrence of these diseases, there have been
no epidemics in the Virgin Islands during the year.








14 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
SANITATION

The control of mosquito breeding places presented a problem when
copious rains fell after a prolonged drought. Improvement of sani-
tary conditions is expected upon completion of water supply,
drainage, and sewage-disposal projects now under construction.
INVESTIGATIONS

Professor Francis W. O'Connor of the Columbia University Col-
lege of Physicians and Surgeons, and Presbyterian Hospital, New
York City, an outstanding authority on filariasis, spent a total of
6 months in the island of St. Croix undertaking special research work
in this disease. He investigated the development of the microfilaria
in wild and laboratory-reared mosquitoes and made observations on
the transmission of the disease under natural conditions.
Dr. Donald Augustine, helminthologist, of the School of Public
Health, Harvard Medical School, Boston, accompanied Professor
O'Connor on one of his visits, and undertook special helminthological
work on a new filaria.
Dr. John McMullen, medical director, United States Public Health
Service, trachoma expert, investigated the incidence of trachoma in
the Virgin Islands. He held several clinics, operated on several
cases, and demonstrated methods of therapy. His conclusion is that
trachoma does not exist in St. Thomas, but that it does exist in St.
Croix.
EDUCATION

A comprehensive study of present educational facilities and
achievement has been undertaken, and recommendations have been
formulated for a reorganization of the educational system to provide
educational training appropriate to the abilities and needs of the
children. This study has included the gathering and preparation of
detailed reports and summaries of equipment; individual case his-
tories of training and experience of teachers; preparation of age-
grade tables and summaries; tabulations of results of standard
mental tests and achievement tests in all schools. Specific recom-
mendations for reorganization have been embodied in a draft of a
new school law which has been submitted to the municipal councils
for action.
There was an enrollment of 3,244 in the public schools as com-
pared to 3,460 in the previous year.
A program of adult education limited to courses in practical arts
and occupations was conducted for a term of 20 weeks with the aid
of funds granted by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration.







REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS


PUBLIC WELFARE

The department of public welfare continued its normal welfare
activities including the administration of regular government aid in
the form of pensions.
The emergency work of this department under the national recov-
ery program consisted of relief investigations, work assignments, di-
rect relief, and work projects conducted by the department. Mat-.
tress making, sewing, and pillow-making projects were conducted
successfully, affording relief employment to a number of women and
providing for the distribution of the finished products to needy
persons.

AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION AND
VOCATIONAL SCHOOL

ST. CROIX
r
The agricultural experiment station in St. Croix has contributed
administratively to homesteading and allied projects and has under-
taken projects which have had direct relationship with the general
agricultural program. Many current problems of plant and animal
diseases, control of insect pests, improvement in soil cultivation, and
conservation of moisture have been studied. Sugarcane seedling
tests have been continued together with comparative propagation and
production tests of miscellaneous sugarcane varieties. Experiments
have been conducted with field crops of certain legumes to determine
their value for green manure crops. These legumes have made good
growth, but the results cannot be tabulated until they are matured.
The eradication of the corn earworm, which has been a serious pest
and in many instances has practically destroyed entire crops of field
corn which serves as an important food crop for livestock, has been
investigated in a 1-acre experiment. Best results were obtained by
hand applications of poison dust consisting of a formula of hydrated
lime, 60 pounds, and arsenate of lead, 40 pounds.
New varieties of sweetpotatoes were tested and developed. Two
strains of sea-island cotton and one lot of Egyptian (tree) cotton
were planted in small plots in order that observations could be made
as to the presence or absence of the pink bollworm which has been
the most destructive cotton pest in the island. Routine examination
of green bolls showed an average infestation of 17 percent. A small
citrus grove was planted on a selected area.








16 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
VOCATIONAL SCHOOL

The curriculum of the vocational school was revised to provide
for a course of study in applied agriculture. The students' average
week consisted of 3 days classroom work, 21/2 days field work or
work projects, five 2-hour evening periods of supervised study and
three classes of band practice and supervised recreation. To improve
student field activities and obtain maximum efficiency in laboratory
and field studies, approximately 15 acres of agricultural station land
was set aside as a school farm. All of the work on this farm has
been done by students under supervision of the station and school
staff.
ST. THOMAS

A major achievement in St. Thomas was the introduction, pro-
pagation, and distribution of the bull tyre palm. The leaves of this
palm are used in the manufacture of native hats, mats, baskets, and
numerous other handcraft articles. In the past the entire supply
of this fiber has been imported. A thorough study was made of this
plant industry and a supply of seeds obtained. Approximately
8,000 young trees have been propagated for distribution. Fiber
for the local market will not be produced before 4 or 5 years. It
is planned to continue the propagation and distribution of the bull
tyre palm to insure an adequate supply for local needs and, if pos-
sible, a surplus for export.
To provide for future inarching and grafting work, grafted
mangoes of some of the best varieties were imported from Florida
and set out on station grounds. An experiment is also being con-
ducted with imported budded avocado trees in an effort to produce
sufficient quantities for local demand as well as export. Experi-
ments were also conducted in citrus planting to determine suitability
of varieties to local conditions.

THE VIRGIN ISLANDS COOPERATIVES

The Virgin Islands Cooperatives have continued to progress stead-
ily. This organization has furnished work to a considerable num-
ber of persons and its operations have been profitable, enabling
the workers to receive a 3-percent bonus on the amount of their earn-
ings for the year. Classes were conducted to instruct the younger
people in the weaving of baskets, plaiting of palm, and embroidering
of linen. During the year 637 persons worked on production of
merchandise for sale, earning $13,540. The mail-order business is
being actively pushed. The tourist trade showed an increase of
46 percent.






REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS


PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT

Many important repair and reconstruction projects were under-
taken and completed by the public works departments of the
municipal governments with funds made available by the Federal
Emergency Relief Administration and the Federal Emergency
Administration of Public Works.
In St. Thomas a 3,000-gallon capacity cistern was constructed at
estate Lerkenlund for conserving the flow and storing spring water
for use of the inhabitants in that vicinity.
In St. Croix the restoration of Government House which was
partly destroyed by fire was begun. The public works department
has continued its regular maintenance work including upkeep of
all government buildings, repairs of streets and roads, maintenance
of public reservoirs, street cleaning and garbage collection, and
maintenance of public parks and cemeteries.

NORMAL ACTIVITIES

In the public libraries, a steady increase in circulation and at-
tendance is reported. The police and prison departments, the fire
departments, the harbor department, and the courts have functioned
normally during the year.

ST. JOHN

Twelve miles of roadway have been widened, graded, and drained
from funds allotted under the Works Progress Administration pro-
gram. A mosquito abatement campaign was inaugurated in conjunc-
tion with the road project.
Eight hundred and fourteen consultations and treatments were
given by the commissioner, who is a medical doctor, to 586 patients.
A radiotelephone has been installed to insure prompt communication
with St. Thomas.
A tourist development company has purchased an 800-acre estate
in this island with a view to constructing cottages for the developing
of the winter resident possibilities of that island.

MARINE CORPS AIR BASE

On September 23, 1935, a Marine Corps air base was established
in St. Thomas with 6 land planes, 1 amphibian, 12 officers, and 67
men. This force has now been increased to 9 land planes, 2 amphi-
bians, 16 officers, and 102 men. A Public Works Administration
contract has been awarded by the Navy for the construction of






18 REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS

aviation facilities at the Lindbergh Bay area which was transferred
from the jurisdiction of the Interior Department to that of the Navy
Department. The establishment of this Navy unit in St. Thomas
has been of great benefit to the community from an economic stand-
point. Through the courtesy of the Navy Department and with the
splendid cooperation of the personnel of the marine air base, the
officials of the local administration have been provided with rapid
means of interisland communication.

INSPECTION OF WATER SUPPLY

Mr. A. F. Johnson, assistant engineer of the United States Bureau
of Reclamation, was assigned to the Virgin Islands late in the fiscal
year to investigate and report on the water supply of St. Thomas.
His preliminary report indicates that the full use of existing roof
catchment areas and the provision of adequate cistern facilities to
store water gathered on roofs must be the first consideration in ob-
taining a water supply for St. Thomas. For that portion of the
population having insufficient roof area, a supplementary supply
from concrete catchment areas with reservoirs and distribution sys-
tems should be provided as an extension of the present system.

HARBOR IMPROVEMENTS

The River and Harbor Act of August 30, 1935, authorized a pre-
liminary examination and survey of St. Thomas Harbor to consider
the advisability of improving its facilities.
A public hearing was held in St. Thomas by representatives of the
Corps of Engineers, United States Army. Recommendations were
submitted for extension of the existing anchorage and maneuvering
area; for removal of Scorpion Rock; for construction of a breakwater
and bulkhead and for establishment of a graving dock.
A preliminary engineering survey of these recommendations has
been authorized and is being conducted.

CONCLUSION

Politically and economically, the Virgin Islands are making steady
forward strides. The outstanding political development of the year
was the enactment of the new Organic Act, which provides an auton-
omous and democratic form of government. Economically, the
operation of the Virgin Islands Co. and the success of the home-
steading program are the outstanding features.
The National Recovery activities have been of material benefit
to the Virgin Islands. Continued active development of the sugar






REPORT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS 19

and rum industries of St. Croix, promotion of tourist and winter
resident trade, and improvement of the harbor facilities of the port
of St. Thomas will result in making the islands self-supporting.
This is the objective of the rehabilitation program, which has been
prosecuted during the past 3 years. Continued appropriation of
funds for these fundamental improvements is strongly recommended.
Respectfully,
LAWRENCE W. CRAMER,
Governor.
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