By David Massell
Read or Download Amassing Power: J. B. Duke and the Saguenay River, 1897-1927 PDF
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Extra info for Amassing Power: J. B. Duke and the Saguenay River, 1897-1927
5 A Canadian by birth, Willson spent the formative period of his working life in the United States: in Ohio, New York City, and eventually at Spray, North Carolina, where he sought to work out an alternative method for aluminum production using the hydroelectricity of a local stream to create intense heat inside an electric furnace, with the financial support of Major James Turner Morehead. Instead of aluminum, however, in May 1892, quite by accident, another compound was produced. Willson noticed that a mixture containing lime and powdered coal, under the heat of the furnace, fused to a heavy metallic mass.
In its scope, the chronology was somewhat broader than I had intended, reaching back by necessity into the nineteenth century, and going forward into the mid 1920s. In its content this was a good bit more complex a tale than the one I had anticipated, entwining not only “business” and the “state” but several levels of each. B. Duke; and Quebec politicians, responding to both political exigencies and selfish need as they attempted to oblige and sustain a vast development project on the northern resource frontier.
Yet, like the Commercial Travellers at the Château on a winter’s evening, what we know of this transformative decision has been effectively limited to the public words of the premier. Not that the dam and its immediate consequences have passed unremarked by historians. fm Page 10 Monday, May 29, 2000 2:19 PM 10 Amassing Power in the historical record, has drawn the attention of writers for over half a century. Harvard economic historian Donald Wallace was among the first to use the evidence from the anti-trust suits of the mid 1920s to deal at some length with the events leading up to the accord between Duke and Davis.