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Mr. AYERS. Where the old jail and workhouse are located which you have turned over to the District of Columbia for the Gallinger Hospital. The CHAIRMAX. Why not leave the models down there?
Mr. AYERS. They are going to take those buildings down and erect the hospital; they have served notice on us to get out.
The CHAIRMAN. If you do not get the rent, what will you do?
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Commissioner, do you know anything about these Patent Office models?
Jr. Ewing. Yes, sir.
Mr. Ewing. They are frequently certified in cases where old patents are cited as anticipation.
The CHAIRMAN. You use them?
The CHAIRMAN. Is that the only one!
Mr. Ewing. Where a certified copy is made and produced in court. I just remembered this instance. Besides they are interesting historically.
The CHAIRMAN. I know that they have been boxed up, to my knowledge, for 10 years or more?
Mr. Ewing. It is a great pity that it has been necessary to box them.
The CHAIRMAN. I saw them stacked as high as the ceiling, and you could not very readily get into the center.
Mr. Ewing. If we get an order, it must be furnished. Of course, we do the best we can. It takes a clerk some time. It is a thing that is done repeatedly and is of importance.
Mr. CANNON. Will they always be important, a hundred years from now?
Mr. Ewing. I think it would be a great pity ever to destroy those models. They represent the arts down to 1880.
Mr. Caxxon. That is, from a sentimental standpoint?
Mr. EwIxG. No; a historical standpoint. I should like to have them where they could be seen. I have people come to the office who remember the office when the models could be seen and ask to see them.
The CHAIRMAN. In your letter you say that there is a building which the Government owns in which they could be stored, but that the Chief Clerk of the Treasury Department will not let them go into that building, because he wants to use that for the storage of secondhand furniture.
Mr. AYERS. We first asked the Treasury Department to let us have the old Panorama Building, which is now rented as a garage by the Treasurv Department. They said that they could not spare it. The CHAIRMAN. Where is that building?
Mr. Ayers. It is in one of the five squares purchased by the Government.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that building rented to private individuals for a garage!
Mr. AYERS. Yes, sir.
Mr. GILLETT. They told us the other day that they were going to use it in the new development.
The CHAIRMAN. For what?
Mr. AYERS. Then we asked for the basement of the armory, but they use that for the storage of discarded material, and the police department has a rifle range there, so they declined to let us have that place. We have made a survey of such buildings as might be made available for these models, and our request has either been turned down or denied, and so consequently we must come to you for relief.
Mr. GILLETT. How did they ever come to be moved out of the basement of the Capitol, did you have them removed, Mr. Woods?
Mr. Woons. I think they were put out by some provision of law. I do not remember the provision of law. Then, they were moved to this present site.
The CHAIRMAN. I think they were put in the Capitol by mistake.
Mr. AYERS. In that connection there is one statement which I should like to make. There is a building on G Street between Sixth and Seventh Streets, which contains sufficient space for these models, at a rental of $2,400 a year, and in addition there is room on the first floor-it is now a livery stable--that could be utilized as a garage for the department's trucks. We have eight trucks that cost us $13 a month, amounting to $1,02 + a year. If this request is granted, we could move the models in there and reduce our garage service $1,000 a year, which would bring the rental of the building for these models down to $1,100.
Mr. GILLETT. If you had the garage there, would you not have to employ some man whom you do not now employ to keep the garage?
Mr. AYERS. No, sir. Our chauffeurs take care of their cars. That building is right near our shops where they make all the minor repairs.
Mr. GILLETT. IIow about the old Maltby Building, is there not room to store the models there?
Mr. Woods. They could not store the models on any floor in that building or in any building adjacent, because the floors are not strong enough. They might use the cellar floor, but that would not be suflicient.
Mr. Sisson. Would you have to have a watchman at the building where you stored these models?
Mr. A YERS. No, sir.
Mr. Sisson. Not only as a historical matter, but as a matter of evidence, like old deeds?
Mr. Ewing. Yes, sir. They are cited as anticipation of patents now in force.
Mr. Sissox. Litigation may arise at any moment when it will be necessary to have them?
Mr. Ewing. Yes, sir; and they will always be important.
Mr. AYERS. There is one other matter and that is the coal situation. I am speaking of the trucks. Our department has a siding and is going to buy two trucks, 5-tons each, and haul its own coal instead of paying 172 per cent increase over the prices that we paid last year for haulage in the District of Columbia.
ADDITIONAL EMPLOYEES, PATENT OFFICE.
The CHAIRMAN, Mr. Commissioner, you are asking “For additional employees during the fiscal year 1918 at annual ratings of compensation as follows: Two law examiners, at $2,750 each; examiner of interferences, $2,700; examiners, three principals, at $2,700 each, 25 first assistants at $2,400 each, and 25 second assistants at $2,100 each: clerks, two of class 4, three of class 3, five of class 2, in all $141.200.” Please explain this item, Mr. Commissioner.
Mr. Ewing. The office is at the present time receiving more applications per year than it has ever received in any previous year. I state that so that there may be no wrong impression that this war and the cutting off of applications from foreign countries has reduced our work; on the contrary, the work has increased. The applications in certain lines are increasing enormously. For example, there has been a sudden rise in Mr. Colwell's division, where ships, guns, and airships are examined. The number of applications in the last two months, compared with the same two months of last year, is 258 per cent-two and one-half times. That is not a mere sudden and temporary rise, but it will continue. That makes it absolutely necessary that we divide Mr. Colwell's division and make two divisions, which we have done with the force we have. That would require one of the primary examiners that I am asking for and the eight additional assistant examiners that go with the division. What is going on in that particular division is going on, in a large measure, in a number of divisions. For example, there has been a sudden increase in dyes and medicines because of the cutting off of the foreign supply. There is a sudden increase in opties because of the cutting off of the Belgian glass. I only mention those as illustrative of what is going on. There is a sudden increase in another division because of the enormous demand for gasoline. There is a sudden increase in the division that examines the different types of trucks, and in the division that examines gasoline engines. I could go through the office. There is immediate prospect of sudden increases in a great number of classes.
The office force is inadequate. It has been inadequate all the time I have been there. In spite of every effort I have made to catch up with the work, and I have never let up for a minute, we have 1,294 more new cases awaiting action to-day than the lowest figure in 1913. We have altogether at the present time 11.289 new cases awaiting action. The number is increasing. It is of the greatest importance to the public that the work of the office be brought up to date, especially in the handling, of course, of things which are of particular use in this war time, and instead of catching up we are falling behind. We can not catch up; it has been demonstrated that we can not. The only way to do the work properly is to have a sufficient force provided to bring the work up to date and to keep it up to date. That
is the proper way to run the office at any time; it is particularly of great importance at this time. If you give us the force, we will establish three new divisions. There is Mr. Colwell's division, which has been already divided, making a new division. We have put a first assistant in charge of one of the divisions. And we would divide Mr. Bancroft's division, and make a third division with classes taken out of several others, if we can get the force, so that we can relieve those examiners who are being especially burdened and have the applications properly and promptly acted upon.
In this supplemental estimate I have asked also for two law examiners. They are, in effect, direct assistants of the commissioner. The war, the problems arising out of the handling of the cases, and the extension of the nine months which the law gives people who can not file their cases within the time limited by law, has caused a very large increase in the commissioner's work, so that last year 4,500 matters came to the commissioner in which he had to render some sort of a decision as against about 3,000 a year or two ago. I have asked for one examiner of interferences. The number of final hearings on interferences in the first six months of this year increased exactly 40 per cent over the number in the first six months of last year. That is true without particular reference to last year. If we go back over four or five years and average it, it is exactly a 40 per cent increase. Furthermore, so many men are inventing along similar lines, because of this war situation, that the number of interferences is going to increase rather than diminish, and the examiner of interferences is simply snowed under.
As to the distribution of the 25 first assistants and 25 second assistant examiners, I do not wish particularly to press the point that they should be only first and second assistant examiners. If the committee wishes to give instead of a part of those some third and fourth assistant examiners, we can get along. But there is in the office one great big job which has pretty nearly stopped because of the tremendous pressure of business at the present time, and that is the work of the classification of patents. I have presented this matter to the committee before and have urged very strongly that I be given an adequate force for the purpose of classification. About 20 years ago we started in to reclassify the patents on a different scheme from what had obtained up to that time. The scheme up to that time was breaking down because of the enormous increase in the number of patents.
For 20 years the office has been struggling to get that classification completed, and at the present rate it can be finished in about 25 years more. To leave the office where it has two systems of classification in existence, half of the patents under the old system and half under the new system, is a most lamentable situation which results invariably in slowing down the work and in decreasing the security of the work. If I can get more than enough for three new divisions, such additional men as there are will be used in the classification work. The three new divisions would require three principal examiners and 24 assistants, 8 assistants in each division. That is the way the divisions are made up-2 first assistants, 2 second assistants, 2 third assistants, and 2 fourth assistants. Those are the things that we simply have to have. When this estimate was prepared it was not based quite on that line.
As to the clerks, what I want is enough clerks to take care of the three new divisions and to assist in the work of classification. Every division has to have 2 clerks. The three new divisions would need 6. The fact is that the clerical force of the office is in just about as deplorable a condition as the examining force for lack of proper places in the higher grades, with the result that the office is constantly losing people who get better salaries in the other departments. When we get a well-trained man in any class of work he immediately looks around for a position in the Treasury Department or the War Department, or somewhere else and gets out, because we have not enough places in the higher grades. That is why I have asked for these higher grade clerks.
The CHAIRMAN. Was this matter taken up with the Committee on Patents recently?
Mr. EWING. It was taken up in different form. I wrote to you, if you remember, in March, and this estimate was sent in in April.' I got a letter from you shortly after this estimate was sent in in which you stated the committee would not consider this estimate; that they had gone over this matter last fall and did not have time to go over the matter again. Having had no encouragement from you in the matter, I saw Mr. Smith, with the result that a bill was introduced by Mr. Smith in somewhat different form, which is here.
The CHAIRMAN. Was that bill prepared in your office!
Mr. Ewing. Yes; and it asks for a part of what I am asking for now. I did not know which I was going to be asked to discuss here, but I supposed I was going to discuss the estimate.
The CHAIRMAN. This bill H. R. 5287 was prepared in your office? Mr. EWING. Yes.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that an expression of what was believed adequate for the office?
Mr. EWING. Not at all.
Mr. Ewing. I talked this matter over with Mr. Smith. I told him that you had written to me that you would not consider this estimate, and Mr. Smith said he might get through what is in this bill, and I trimmed the bill down to what he thought he might get through.
The CHAIRMAN. What is there about this proposed bill that you thought might appeal to the judgment of Congress which is not in the estimate?
Mr. Ewing. This bill calls for 2 primary examiners instead of 3.
The CHAIRMAN. A force of 26 employees, at a cost of $46,500, instead of 66 employees, at a cost of $144,200?
Mr. EWING. Yes. The CHAIRMAN. And it was prepared in your office and introduced in the House on the 29th of June?
Mr. EWING. Yes. It calls for 2 primary examiners instead of 3; it calls for an examiner of interferences, just as this does, and calls for 4 first, 4 second, 4 third, and 4 fourth assistant examiners; that is. 16 assistant examiners instead of 50, and the salaries on the average are lower. It also calls for 5 clerks of class 1 at $1,200, and 2 laborers. That was 1 clerk for the examiner of interferences, 2 clerks for each of the two divisions and 2 laborers or messengers, 1