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ACADEMY OF ADVANCED TRAFFIC NEW YORK -- complete traffic lectures Prepared by George A Rautenberg Copyright 1939
THE VITAL IMPORTANCE OF TRANSPORTATION.-Next to the founding of the American Government by our forefathers who, even then, vision a nation extending from the Atlantic to the Pacific, perhaps the greatest human achievement has been the development of the American Transportation System-the greatest transportation machine in history. The growth of American transportation is a vision of splendid achievement come true, a triumph of ingenuity, hope, imagination and stick-to-itiveness.

The past century has witnessed the conquest of the land and the water and the air. Journeys and shipments which once required weeks, or even months, are measured now in hours. and we are perhaps just at the beginning of developments which will be as startling as those of the past-developments which will work revolutionary changes in our industry, commerce and habits of living. Changes in our methods of transportation will dictate the course of economic progress in the future just as they have in the past.
Transportation is the life blood of the nation and the transportation lines are the arteries of Commerce via which the commerce of the nation must flow unimpeded or disaster will follow. The very existence of our commerce and industry depends absolutely upon cheap and efficient transportation. Employment and prosperity depend on more than supply and demand. Without efficient and economical distribution, industry would slow down and enforced idleness follow and many of the so-called necessities would become luxuries. "Efficient and economic distribution" cannot he obtained without competent Traffic Management; therefore, traffic management may well be called the Science of Distribution, The business of the transportation industry consists of transporting persons And commodities, thus creating a division of their activities known as passenger traffic and freight traffic.

How many of the millions who daily use our many and diversified transportation services have any conception of how these powerful and efficient transportation machines came to be there for their convenience; have any knowledge of the enormous expenditure of money in their building and maintenance; of the labor, grief, engineering perplexities; the brains, mightier than either capital or labor, involved in their construction and operation? Yet, ionic knowledge of these things is necessary to a proper understanding of modern transportation in its relation to society and government and of the many problems which grow out of that relationship. These problems are crying for solution and will never be solved correctly and permanently without such understanding.
The transportation expert knows that most traffic heresies are due to taking a partial view of things. To be sound, a view must be comprehensive: At no time in the past has the need for practical training and instruction in traffic and transportation matters been so urgent or necessary as it is today. When a traffic position is open, calling for highly technical knowledge, or when trained and experienced men are promoted, the vacancies ordinarily must be filled by clerks from the ranks. These clerks, by reason of their lack of experience and unfamiliarity with the work, are not qualified to fill positions requiring much technical knowledge. Consequently:, the opportunities ahead of a trained traffic expert are greater today than ever before.

To get an idea of the tremendous importance of transportation and the almost unlimited opportunities ahead of you in this profession let us understand that transportation is the second Industry in importance in the United States; it is exceeded only by agriculture.  
Because of the wide area of the United States, the diverse natural resources of the country, the remarkable efficiency of our mass production methods and our widely distributed producing and manufacturing localities, facilities for cheap, rapid and safe transportation constitute a most important element in their economic organization. Though there are within the United States lakes vast enough to float the commerce of the world and mighty rivers unequalled elsewhere within the domain of civilization, these natural waterways are but auxiliaries to the general system of transportation, which, partly on account of the topography of the country and the normal trend of commercial shipments, is mainly overland. The early contest for supremacy between canals and railways demonstrated the comparative inadequacy of the former for any service other than that of feeders for the more efficient railway system. The railways speedily gained, and for a century successfully maintained, a paramount position in the national transportation system, which resulted in a virtual transportation monopoly. However, for the first time in its history, the railroad faces a competitor who challenges its supremacy-the motor truck.
The underlying motive of freight transportation is to move all articles of commerce offered for shipment, from points where they are produced, manufactured or concentrated, to the market points of consumption or utility, and the gradual evolution of modern transportation is responsible for the present broad and growing extension of commercial and industrial activities. Under our present transportation scheme, the producer, manufacturer, wholesaler, jobber or distributor is able to market his product economically and to advantage, at great distances.

THE BEGINNING OF MODERN TRANSPORTATION.-It is said that the real development of transportation in the United States began with the close of the Revolutionary Wag when the spirit of the people was quickened, thereby laying a mental foundation for broader vision, better cooperation, national unity and more energetic industrial activities.  Prior to the Revolutionary War, people were more or less isolated, due to the lack of proper transportation facilities, and such primitive vehicles as were in use made transportation slow,unreliable and uncomfortable. The various communities, being isolated, were naturally occupied almost exclusively with their  own industrial development, of which they were justly proud.

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