About That Strike
This is in response to Walter Bull’s column “We’re in the Midst of a ‘Capital Strike’” (Nov. 2).
The column itself appears to be well-written and thought out, with its main points well-defined, although somewhat difficult to understand since I am not a trained economist.
However, I was struck by the statement “In 1937, the economic recovery which had started in FDR’s first term … Many corporations that had weathered the first phase of the Great Depression entered bankruptcy and were liquidated.”
One large American corporation at that time in the northeast, the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) bucked the trend and, in 1938, pushed forward, spending millions of dollars to complete the project.
The money for this undertaking came as a loan from the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) and was administered through the Public Works Administration (PWA). The PRR eventually repaid the loan.
Several railroads, including the Seaboard Air Line through Southern Pines, entered bankruptcy and receivership during the Great Depression, but not the “Mighty Penn.”
Fast forward 30 years to 1967, Cleveland. My (future) wife and I found ourselves working for the PRR in its last full year before its merger with the New York Central.
James H. Stevenson
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