Fridley page 3

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R. Newton McDowell of Kansas City In Charge of Operations; Produces U.S. Authorization
Chamber of Commerce Should Take Up Road Problem with State Highway Dept. Immediately

            A dozen agents of the R. Newton McDowell Company of Kansas City, authorized agents for the United States Government to purchase 18,000 acres of land in the Hamburg-Howell neighborhood for construction of a $14,000,000 high explosive plant, began their duties Monday morning.
            The men came here from the Kansas City office and were accompanied by Mr. McDowell who will be in charge of activities. The company has opened an office in the Building and Loan building.
            Because a question developed over the authenticity of the McDowell concern to purchase the land, each agent is carrying a copy of the authorization from Col Valliant of the United States Army.
            The authorization, dated October 23, reads:
            To Whom it may Concern:
            A contract has this date been entered into with the Mr. R. Newton McDowell, Kansas City, Mo., to obtain options for the United States of America on approximately 18,000 acres of land in the vicinity of Weldon Springs, St. Charles County, Missouri.
            Mr. McDowell and his agents are duly authorized to procure said options on behalf of the War Department and the United States and it is hoped that full cooperation will be given Mr. McDowell and his agents in procuring said options on the property in question which is a vital link in the national defense program
            R. D. Valliant, Colonel, Q. M. C.
            U. S. Army.
            A more recent map of the area shows Howell well inside the area and like Hamburg, it will have to be absorbed. The map shows the boundary will follow the western Dardenne Township line instead of the Muschany Hollow Road and County Highway “D” as was previously announced.
            The new consolidated Howell grade school is expected to be used for an office building and other well built structures in the area are expected to be retained for official headquarters.
            Plans are already being considered for construction of a new Howell High School building as the present structure is in the plant boundary.
            With a capacity of from 8,000 to 12,000 men for the plant, the unemployment problem in this county is expected to be solved. It was pointed out that the WPA in this county can be abolished as all those men can now obtain employment.
            Hundreds of workers are expected to establish home between St. Charles and Weldon Springs so they will be close to their work.
            This newspaper is suggesting that the Chamber of Commerce contact the State Highway Department immediately and work out a road program between here and the plant to take care of the heavy traffic. Highway 94 will not be capable of taking care of the traffic that will pass over the road daily. Two plans are being proposed for 94 to go around the area. One is to continue out through Cottleville to Dardenne and then down to Matson while the other would follow the present route to Weldon Spring then south on Highway 61 to the river and up along the M. K. & T. railroad right of way to Defiance where it would rejoin the old highway.
            The latter route would not put much additional mileage on the [trip] between here and communities [in] the western part of the county [?] the other way would add at least [?] miles to the trip.