Transportation Act of 1920
TRANSPORTATION ACT OF 1920
TRANSPORTATION ACT OF 1920, also known as the Esch-Cummins Act. The U.S. government took over and ran the railroads from 26 December 1917 to 1 March 1920. During the period of government operation, the tracks were obliged to carry a heavy volume of traffic with little attention to replacements or ordinary maintenance. This was more a result of circumstances than the fault of the government; nevertheless, the railroads were in a deplorable condition when, after a little more than two years, they were returned to private operation.
As a result, some remedial legislation was imperative. The Transportation Act of 28 February 1920 was the result. The Senate bill, introduced by Sen. Albert B. Cummins, and the House bill, proposed by Rep. John Jacob Esch, required a conference committee to produce a compromise measure, which became effective on 1 March, a little more than three months after President Woodrow Wilson returned the railroads to private operation.
To help the railroads financially, the bill authorized consolidations, established a six-month guarantee period, and authorized extensive loans for a variety of purposes. Congress provided for arbitration without power of enforcement and established voluntary adjustment boards to settle labor disputes. These provisions were to be enforced by the Railroad Labor Board, consisting of nine members and having national jurisdiction. Hotly contested in Congress, the Transportation Act of 1920 engendered controversy for years thereafter. Advocates contended that favorable terms were necessary to avoid paralysis of the national transportation system; detractors claimed that railroads and financial interests had dictated terms to their own advantage.
Berk, Gerald. Alternative Tracks: The Constitution of American Industrial Order, 1865–1917. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.
Himmelberg, Robert F., ed. Business-Government Cooperation, 1917–1932: The Rise of Corporatist Policies. Vol. 5 of Business and Government in America since 1870. New York: Garland, 1994.
W. BrookeGraves/c. w.
"Transportation Act of 1920." Dictionary of American History. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 3, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/transportation-act-1920
"Transportation Act of 1920." Dictionary of American History. . Retrieved December 03, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/transportation-act-1920
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.