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Letter from President Theodore Roosevelt to Philip B. Stewart

This item includes a letter in which President Roosevelt cites a report from E. A. Hitchcock about the Surveyor General's Office of Colorado., WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON. June 26, 1905 Dear Phil: At my request Secretary Hitchcock has just come in and has given me the report of the special inspector who last investigated the Surveyor General's Office of Colorado. this report is dated April 20, 1905. This same inspector had ^investigated the office in August 1904 [crossed out section: reported a year before] and had pointed out the general inefficiency of the work under Vivian and the fact that the office was handled primarily from a political, and only secondarily from a business standpoint. The ^last report of April [crossed out: May] 20th is of course a strictly confidential report and can not be made public; but I wish you to understand that the Secretary and I, in speaking as we did about Vivian, were proceeding upon official knowledge gained in the only way in which we can get knowledge worth having. The report is long and sets forth in detail many of the faults. I quote a few extracts from it: "The condition of said office and the employees, and the work being performed by them, has not materially changed since my former examination as reported August 11, 1094. . . . There appears to be a disposition on the part of certain employees of this office to oppose reforms and methods asked to be adopted for the betterment of the service. There appears to be no head to this office, and system, discipline and method are lacking. . . . The instructions given in my former report have been almost entirely disregarded." (Here I condense.) "Too many clerks and draftsman have been employed and more than were necessary to perform the office work. . . . What this office needs is a very competent Chief Clerk, a man who thoroughly understands his business and who will install system and discipline, and put this office on a busine...
National Archives and Records Administration
Part of:
Letters from President Theodore Roosevelt to Secretary of the Interior Ethan Allen Hitchcock, Communications with the Executive Department
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