G. A. Tomlinson
G. A. TOM LIN SON
THE development of transportation on our inland waterways has been a prime factor in the industrial growth and material prosperity of our country. This is particularly true of the evolution of transportation on the Great Lakes, where has been established the most ex-tensive inland waterway traffic in the world, carried on by the most modern and improved vessels that float on fresh water anywhere.
Most important of the western termini of this great system of water transportation is Duluth, the main shipping point for the great grain product of the Northwest; for the wonderful ore product of the iron ranges of Minnesota which come from the immediate hinterland of Duluth, and for the distribution of coal to supply Minnesota and the other grain states.
Leading among the representatives of lake transportation having headquarters at Duluth is Mr. G. A. Tomlinson, who has been long identified with the business and is one of the men most responsible for the great advance that has been shown in the expansion of lake-carrying capacity, improvement in fleets and port conditions and in quality of lake transportation.
Beginning as owner and manager with a few small vessels, Mr. Tomlinson has been with the leaders in developing the great business done on the lakes in the carrying of bulk freights for marketing the grain product of the Northwest; for distributing the coals of the Appalachian region for the use of the Northwest, and in sending the matchless ore of the Lake Superior region to the mills of the East and Middle West and thus sup-plying the basic material needs of the largest of our industries.
Mr. Tomlinson's own steamers, with their gross tonnage, include the steamers "Frank C. Ball," 6,909 gross tons; "D. M. Philbin," 6,272; "G. G. Barnum," 6,272; "James E. Davidson," 6,206; "Hoover & Mason," 5,841; "Cuyler Adams," 5,785 "Ball Brothers," 5,733 "Sierra," 4,846; "Sinaloa," 4,539; "Sonoma," 4,539; "Sultana," 3,914; "Sonora," 3,914, and "Agnes W.," 1,593 gross tons. All of the vessels of his fleet are well built and are equipped in the most modern and advanced degree for the prompt and efficient handling of freights in all the bulk commodities which form the chief articles of commerce on the Great Lakes.
Besides his own fleet Mr. Tomlinson is manager for various companies identified with lake transportation, including the Continental Steamship Company, owning the steamer "Chester A. Congdon," of 6,530 gross tons; The National Steamship Company, owning the steamers "F. W. Hart," of 4,307 gross tons, and the "C. W. Watson," of 4,306 gross tons; and the Triton Steamship Company, owning the steamer "Rufus P. Ranney," of 4,797 gross tons. These vessels, under the management of Mr. Tomlinson, constitute, with his own fleet, a majority of the steamers having Duluth for their home port which are represented in the lists of the Lake Carriers' As-sociation and conform to the rules established by that association for the joint benefit of the lake- carrying interest.
The Lake Carriers' Association, which is composed of representatives of all the important lake transportation activities, has been the tireless advocate and champion of the interests of those engaged in the navigation.
The association has had the benefit of the wisdom and experience of those who, by their enterprise, have created on the Great Lakes a development of trade and an improvement in vessels which is one of the marvels of modern shipping history. Of those who have built up the association none has been of greater service than Mr. Tomlinson, who is a member of the Executive Committee of the Lake Carriers' Association.
Mr. Tomlinson is regarded one of the most representative men of the country identified with transportation interests on inland waterways. So well is his reputation established in this connection that when the Government took over the operation of the railroads of the country and added to this service that of various lines of water transportation, Mr. Tomlinson was called into Government service as Director of the Division of Inland Waterways of the United States Railroad Administration, in which important connection he continues to serve the country's transportation interests.