- May 28, 1930 – JSA to Harry Smith –
My dear Mr. Smith:
I hope you have recovered from the mental strain yesterday at the Country Club. There were many interesting incidents, but none more unexpected than the absence of any reference made to the unsightly structure erected on the Tongue Mountain shore which brought about this and other discussions. Sometime later I hope I will have a chance to discuss the next chapter which probably will be started with the action on Dr. Langmuir’s part to prove that the land underwater is after all, a part of the Forest Preserve and, therefore, protected by Article 7, Section 7 of the Constitution and, therefore, no authority is vested in any branch of the government to act contrary to such Article which means, in a few words, that those who now give permits have no authority whatsoever to do so. It is unfortunate that a bigger view was not taken in the beginning and the structure which brought about the discussion dealt with in a straight-forward and sensible manner. Failure to do so has brought the burden of difficulty now on all occupants and some of them are not jeopardizing the public interest as you know, and should not be disturbed.
As you know, I have been trying to protect the neighborhood and the general public’s interest in reference to Mr. Hill’s garage by preventing its being sold to some “hell-raising” bunch and in my discussion with him sometime ago I mentioned a recent decision which I had been told had been rendered against the municipality for damages where water had been contaminated and ill-effects resulting to some people, who brought action. This decision if represented, might be very useful to you to know, since it appears to place responsibility on the purity of the water with those who have to do with the furnishing of water and makes them liable for any ill-effects. Mr. Hill admitted that the spring had often had the top left off, was rather low and contained debris of various sorts, some of which looked like dead animals, but I am not sure of this. The environment does not seem good, however. He says that the water is mainly used for filling radiators and is not essential for the public. I am writing this to you informally since Mr. Hill can give you a better idea of the situation than I can in respect to ownership and responsibility.
Will drop by at my first opportunity.
Cordially your, JSApperson