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The Westward Tide

Empire Builders

The Westward Tide

Sep 30 1929







VOICE, New York cabaret emcee

SINGERS, a cabaret act

VOICE, at the directors' meeting

VOICES, others at the meeting

VOICE, out West




The Westward Tide 

A Story of the Pacific Northwest

First of the Empire Builder Series of Nationally Broadcast Radio Programs

September 30, 1929

Sponsored by the Great Northern Railway


Cast of Characters

TOM BALDWIN--A young business man and firm believer in the Pacific Northwest.

ALICE--His fiancee.

MR. EDWARDS--Ultra conservative.

THE PIONEER--An old man who also is a firm believer in the West, having watched its metamorphosis from pioneer days.

JOHN McGLYNN--An early western character.

Miscellaneous members of a New York cabaret, directors of an eastern corporation and the crew of the Great Northern Railway's new Empire Builder.

The time is the present.



Starting Monday evening, September 30, the Empire Builder series of radio programs, sponsored by the Great Northern Railway, will again be on the air for a nine months' period. This season they will be broadcast over the coast to coast chain of 25 stations that comprise the Blue Network of the National Broadcasting Company. The time of the broadcast and a list of the stations participating appear on the back cover of this leaflet.

The first program of this series deals with the Pacific Northwest generally and its industrial possibilities. Its principal scene is laid in the Directors' Room of a large Eastern manufacturing company. This company has grown until it is necessary that they have additional facilities and a directors' meeting has been called to decide where their branch factory shall be built.

At their meeting Tom Baldwin, a young business man, explains the many advantages of the Pacific Northwest and the story closes with him and his bride traveling westward on the Empire Builder to supervise the construction of the company's new factory.

In planning the Empire Builder series of radio programs, of which this is a typical example, the Great Northern Railway is again using the radio to broadcast over the entire United States the resources and attractions of the Northwest. Believing that manufacturers and shippers, particularly in the West, will have more than just a casual interest in this first program of the Empire Builder series, the Great Northern has had a quantity of these published. If you desire extra copies, write to A. J. Dickinson, Passenger Traffic Manager, Great Northern Railway. St. Paul, Minnesota.


The Westward Tide

A Story of the Pacific Northwest


Edward Hale Bierstadt and Harold M. Sims


A New York Cabaret.

[The opening scene is laid in one of the better known New York Cabarets. The orchestra is playing a modern jazz piece and the happy voices of the dancers are heard over the microphone. This gradually fades out.]

ALICE--Oh, Tom! If your directors knew the West you wouldn't have to fight.


ALICE--Yes, Tom?

TOM--Suppose we go ahead and get married now, and take a chance on the outcome of the meeting tomorrow?

ALICE-- You know we can't do that, Tom, and you know why. Father is all I've got in the world, and I'm all he's got. He can't live back here and I can't leave him all alone.

TOM--Darn it! The thing that gets me is that quite aside from any personal considerations the new plant ought to be built in the West.

[The orchestra music and restaurant noises again come in story.]

VOICE--Ladies and gentlemen, may I have quiet for a moment?

[The orchestra music and restaurant noises die out.]

VOICE--The next number on our program this evening is a specialty act. 

Ladies and gentlemen, here they are.


ALICE--Oh, they are good! I'm so glad we came.

TOM--Well, I'm all set to be entertained.

[A cabaret specialty number now occupies the center of the stage. At the close of their song the patrons applaud.]


ALICE--They're just as good as I thought they were.......Oh dear! I can't move father East, and if you don't win tomorrow we'll just have to wait.

TOM--No, Alice. We've waited long enough already. I'm going to fight this out to a finish. If Dad were here he'd say, "Go to it, Son!" One of the last bits of advice Dad gave me was: "Son, watch the Pacific Northwest! That country's on the cross-roads of tomorrow." Well, the tomorrow is here and the son is going West. That's that!

ALICE--Oh, Tom! You're wonderful. And that's just the spirit that's making the West what it is--and what it's going to be!

[Now the orchestra is heard as a background for the dialogue.]

ALICE--I don't want to be boring about it, but isn't there anybody on your board of directors who feels as you do?

TOM--Yes, as a matter of fact, there are several. There's one man in particular that I'm counting on tomorrow.

ALICE--Who is he?

TOM--He's an old friend of Dad's, and he knows the West and knows it from A to Z. He knew it way back in the early days. It's old Edwards who is really making all the trouble.

ALICE--Mr. Edwards' being, of course, a dyed-in-the-wool Easterner?

TOM--Dyed-in-the-wool? Dyed-in-provincialism! He's so much of an Easterner that he thinks the sun rises in the Atlantic Ocean and sets in the Hudson River!

ALICE--Dear me! That does sound rather--rather fixed.

TOM--I'll say he's fixed! He's "sot" in his ways, Edwards is.

ALICE--Well, Tommy dear, you just do your best to make him come unstuck tomorrow. Oh, Tom, just think what it means to us!


TOM--You darling!

[Now the music of the orchestra swells up again. A piece is completed and the music dies out. The rapping of a gavel on a table announces the opening of the second act which is laid in the Directors' Room of a large Eastern manufacturing corporation.]

VOICE--Now gentlemen, come to order please! As you all know, this meeting of the directors has been called to make a decision as to whether we shall build a plant on the Pacific Coast.

EDWARDS--I'm against it! Now and all the time, I'm against it! The real - - -

VOICE--Just one moment, Mr. Edwards. Let's hear from Mr. Baldwin first. He's the - - - 

EDWARDS--Baldwin has personal reasons for wanting - - - 

TOM--That's quite true. I have a personal interest, but I can assure you, gentlemen, that it has nothing to do with my conviction that we should build a plant in the Pacific Northwest--that this is justified by lower initial costs, lower manufacturing costs and the improved product which will result from manufacturing under milder climatic conditions.....The East is no longer the natural center of American wealth and business.

EDWARDS-- What? Do you mean to tell me that Wall Street has moved?

TOM--Wall Street, no! But commerce and capital have moved steadily westward since the dawn of history. The manufacturing center of the United States, once in the New England states, has already shifted into the Mississippi Valley. The Pacific Coast is only beginning to develop its natural wealth. It is the last frontier in the westward march of commerce and capital.

EDWARDS--Baldwin seems to be pretty well fed up on - - -

TOM--I'm fed up on facts that mean dollars and cents to you, Mr. Edwards, as well as to the rest of us. The Pacific coast states are nearest the Orient, South America, Australia,


Alaska, Siberia and India. These regions comprise two-thirds the population of the world as well as the greatest wealth of undeveloped natural resources.

EDWARDS--Foreign markets, eh? I was waiting for that. Europe is our heaviest buyer.

TOM--True. But we are finding it increasingly difficult to meet competition in Europe. And we are not alone. American industries must look for their greatest expansion in the markets of the Oriental countries and the Latin Americas. There we can compete with Europe. Already American manufacturers are recognizing this fact and getting established on the West coast.

EDWARDS--You're dreaming. Industry is here. Iron and steel are here; labor is here; long experience and efficiency are here.

TOM--You don't know the West. I can show you plant after plant that is operating at less cost than similar plants here--many of them producing a better product. Labor can live more cheaply--and get more out of life while working. The climate, mountains, fishing, hunting - - - 

EDWARDS--We're not building this plant for the enjoyment of our workmen!

TOM--No, and you don't have the labor problems to wrestle with. I do. I know the difference that living conditions make in turn-over and efficiency . . . . I was about to call your attention to the fact that there is not one essential thing that the West coast has not got in abundance!

EDWARDS--Yes, there is!

TOM--What is it?


TOM--But the population's coming. Right today the cities on the West coast are the fastest growing cities in the country. It's because industry generally is awakening to the advantages I've pointed out--and because power is cheaper than anywhere else in the country. A third of all the potential water power


in the United States is to be found in the two states of Washington and Oregon. These and the other coast states are rich in natural resources. Timber. Minerals. Vast areas adapted to agriculture, stock-raising, horticulture, etc. The day is coming--and soon--when these resources are going to be manufactured into finished articles right there in the Northwest. That will mean industries, payrolls and population.

VOICES--Hear, hear, that sounds like straight talk. (Ad lib.)

EDWARDS--This is all too much in the future! The real point is that this is where the money is now!

PIONEER--Shucks! There's always money in the West. Always has been. Ever since the days when you could pick it up off the ground.

[General laugh.]

EDWARDS--You think that just because you live there!

PIONEER--I know it because I've lived there so long. My land! I call to mind when I first went West, back in the early days, money was so plentiful my eyes just popped out of my head. You can take it from me that there isn't any less now than there was then.

VOICE--What was that story you used to tell about the first money you ever earned out there?

PIONEER--Let's see! Oh, I know what you mean! Why that was the second day I was on the West coast. Came out across Panama, I did. Well, I was a-standing in the street wondering where I was a-going to get a job, and listening to some music that was comin' out from a dance hall near by.

[The Pioneer is in a reminiscent mood and the sound of early Western music announces the transition of the scene to the place of his tale.]

VOICE--Lookythere, youngster. There's John A. McGlynn!

PIONEER--Who's he?

VOICE--Don't know who John McGlynn is? When did you get here?


PIONEER--Just last night.

VOICE--Oh! Well, John has the only American wagon in town. Brought it out from New York in pieces, and put it together himself. Broke four wild California mules to drag her. He's a wonder!

PIONEER--I'm going to speak to him. Hey there! Hey! Mr. McGlynn!

McGLYNN--Now there, young man, don't be bringing all that mud into this wagon! With freight at twenty dollars a ton, you've lugged about thirty dollars worth of mud in here, you young hippopotamus! These ain't no safe movers, these mules!

[The mules bray.]

McGLYNN--Yep, you heard me!

PIONEER-- I want a job, Mr. McGlynn, just for today. I may go out to the mines tomorrow.

McGLYNN--You want a job, do ye now?

PIONEER--Can you give me one?

McGLYNN--I can, mebbe. Do you understand the inner aspirations of mules?

PIONEER--I was brought up on a farm.

McGLYNN--And the principles of elementary navigation by dead reckoning?

PIONEER--What was that?

McGLYNN--I mean mud holes. Can ye keep out of them?

PIONEER--I can try.

McGLYNN--All right. Take the reins. You're hired. At six o'clock I'll find you and pay you off. You get twenty-five dollars.

PIONEER--How much?


McGLYNN--Twenty-five dollars for the day, and I tell you straight you're a fool to be workin' for it.

PIONEER--It sounds big to me.

McGLYNN--It wont when ye've been out here a week. Now, I'm telling you if you bog them mules down I'll skin you alive, big as you are.

JUDGE--What's all this, John?

McGLYNN--Is it yourself, Judge Girvin? I'm just telling this young man that he can't have the job of driving my little California canaries for but one day, because I've hired a fine lawyer from the East at two hundred and fifty a month to drive my mules for me.

JUDGE--You have done well, John. It is the whole business of a lawyer to know how to manage mules and jackasses so as to make them pay!

[All laugh--the sound of dance hall music rising to full strength and then fading out indicates a lapse of several hours.]

PIONEER--[Chuckles] Well, along about five or six o'clock I drove my mules up to the post office and, sure enough, there was McGlynn. (Short pause)

PIONEER--Whoa there, mules! Whoa, whoa!

[The rattle of the wagon and of trace chains. Creaking. The sound of hooves in the heavy mud. Then the bray of mules as they stop.]

McGLYNN--Well, bub, you seem to be ship-shape so far. Take care of the mules all right, did you?

PIONEER--I fixed 'em.

McGLYNN--How many times did you get stuck in the mud?

PIONEER-- Not once.

McGLYNN--What do you think of that now! Well, I'll admit you're a judgematical young man, and if you want a job I'll let that lawyer go. [Laughs] No? Well, you're right. A man's a fool to work for anybody but himself out here.


Where's your bag? Haven't got any? How do you carry your dust? I forgot. You're a tenderfoot of course. Wait a minute. Here's a gold slug for you.

PIONEER--Is it worth twenty-five dollars?

McGLYNN--It's about a fifty dollar slug. You can get it weighed. Give me the change next time you see me.

PIONEER--But I may leave for the mines tomorrow.

McGLYNN--Then leave the change for me at the El Dorado saloon.

PIONEER--How do you know I'll leave it?

McGLYNN--I don't. If you need twenty-five dollars more than you do a decent conscience, John A. McGlynn isn't the man to deny you!

[A bit of dance hall music rising to full strength and then fading out announces the transition of the story back to the scene in the Directors' Room.]

PIONEER--[Chuckles] Well, that's the way I earned my first money out there, and I've been earning it there ever since. And that's the way the people are out there too, like John A. McGlynn, open-handed, friendly an' honest. They're good to do business with. There isn't so much wear and tear. 'Clare to goodness, back here a man's got to keep his mind on his wallet the whole time!

[General Laugh]

TOM--Well, gentlemen, that about expresses the way I feel about it myself. I hope you will vote for our western expansion.

EDWARDS--I'm against it! You needn't hope for my vote now or any other time.

TOM--Very well then. I'm afraid there's only one answer to that . . . .

[The sound of feet retreating. The click of a key in a lock. The steps return.]


TOM--Now, Mr. Edwards and gentlemen, the door is locked, and the key is in my pocket. I am convinced that the place for our new plant is on the West coast. If I cannot have the unanimous support of you gentlemen, I want my resignation accepted before this meeting adjourns.

EDWARDS--This is an outrage! How dare you detain us by force! Unlock that door or I'll have the law on you!

VOICES--By George, the young man has a way with him! What do you think of that for nerve? I'm for him! I think he's right!

(Ad lib.)

PIONEER--[Chuckles] Dog my cats, the boy has enough back bone for two men! Well, gentlemen, I don't aim to stay in this room all day, an' I'm too old to fight my way out. I take it that our friend, Mr. Edwards here, represents the only opposition an', that bein' so, let's make him a proposition.

EDWARDS--Well, what is it?

PIONEER--We'll buy out your interest in this concern, Mr. Edwards. Not only that, but we'll give you a check right now. How about it?

EDWARDS--Well--well--I don't know about that. Do you mean to say that you gentlemen believe in this Western venture strongly enough to buy my holdings?

PIONEER--I certainly do. I think all of us do. I want you to sell, but I warn you--you'll be sorry if you do!

EDWARDS--Hum! I may be at that. Hum. No, by jingo, I won't sell, and if you're determined to be fools and build in the West, I'll be a fool along with you!

[General laugh]

VOICE--Let's bring it to a vote. All in favor of building our new plant on the West coast, please signify in the usual manner.


VOICE--Contrary minded?


EDWARDS--Just a little, Mr. Chairman, just a little [Laugh].

[The music of an orchestra comes in here. It swells and then fades and the hum and subdued roar of a train, with occasional whistles, takes its place. This is heard from inside the train and indicates the change of the scene from the Directors' Room to the sun parlor observation car of the Empire Builder.]

ALICE--It hardly seems true, does it, Tom?

TOM--What, dear?

ALICE--Why, that we're--married.

TOM--It's the truest thing I know!

ALICE--And here we are, as big as you please in the observation car of the most beautiful train I've ever seen.

TOM--I wonder why they call it The Empire Builder. Unusual name for a train, isn't it?

ALICE--Oh, your pioneer friend told me that. It was like this. The Northwest cities wanted a fast transcontinental train--sort of thought it would help them along a bit. So a few months ago the Great Northern put on this fast train. And just to do the thing up right, it gave them the finest train that was ever put on rails--everything new from engines to observation cars. The happy thought occurred to someone that it would be appropriate to name the train after Jim Hill who founded the Great Northern and who was known everywhere as The Empire Builder because he did so much towards building up the Northwest.

TOM--[Ruminating] Empire Builder. Edwards accused me of mixing sentiment and business. Seems there's sentiment in railroading too.

ALICE--And you kind of like it, don't you, dear? But I've only told you half of it. Every car in this train is named for for some man who played a part in building this great Western Empire.


TOM-- It's something to be proud of all right.

ALICE--Well, you can be just as proud as any of them. You're building it too. You're bringing your business out here, and that's what makes it an empire!

TOM--Hum! That is certainly pleasant to the ear.

PORTER--Excuse it, please, suh. Ah jest thought you an' your lady would like to know that we is jest comin' into Glacier Park.

TOM--Thank you, Porter. Yes, we're glad to know it.

PORTER--This place is comin' to be just like Niagara Falls used to be, suh! Yes, suh, it is! He, He!

ALICE--Oh, Tom, do you suppose we'll ever live down being a bride and groom?

TOM--I don't want to. Being a groom is the pleasantest thing I've tackled yet! . . . . Hello! Here's our friend back.

PIONEER--Well, you two children, here you are, eh? Takin' a look at the scenery? I tell you, it sure looks good to an old timer like me. And this road's certainly got the scenery.

TOM--If it weren't for you, we wouldn't be looking at it.

ALICE--You're a regular fairy God-father.

PIONEER--Shucks! I believe in the West. I know it's good. When I can bring a sound business proposition out here it's good for the business an' it's good for the West. An' anything that's good for the West is good for me! . . . . Say, I tell you this is travelin! this is. You're sure a guest the minute you get on one of these Great Northern trains and they don't let you forget it. Even the men up in the engine make you realize it the way they handle the trains. Most as smooth as your own living room--

TOM--I'll bet these trains cost a pretty penny.

PIONEER--Luxury like this takes a lot of mighty costly machinery and equipment--but it wouldn't amount to much


if a few thousand human beings who run these trains weren't taking a lot of pride in their work and their railway.

ALICE--Which is where sentiment and business mix again!

PIONEER--I'd say you ought to know, Alice . . . . Speaking of sentiment, why not have some music? Ought to be able to pick up Spokane from here. I'll try.

[Static] Oh, Good Gracious!

ALICE--Here, let me try.

[She tunes in on an N B C program and a bit of the same cabaret act that they heard in New York comes over the radio.]

ALICE--There! Why it's the same act we heard that night we were dining together--the night before the directors' meeting.

PIONEER--Well, we can jest sit back now an' listen to the music and look at the scenery. By golly, old Horace Greely was sure right!

TOM--I'll take your word for it, but what was he right about?

PIONEER--He was right when he said--Go West, young man, go West!

ALICE--Yes, and he'd have been righter if he'd told the young men to be sure to take wives with them!

[Laughs. The music of the New York cabaret swells to full strength and then fades out.]


ANNOUNCER--You have been listening to Empire Builders, a program sponsored by the Great Northern Railway. Next Monday at the same hour this program will present to you another romance of the West.

Radio Continuity Copyright by National Broadcasting Company


The Empire Builder Radio Programs

The Empire Builder radio programs, sponsored by the Great Northern Railway, will be on the air every Monday night for an indefinite period. The first program will be on Monday, September 30, 1929, from 10:30 to 11:00 P. M. Eastern Standard Time, 9:30 to 10:00 P. M. Central Standard Time, 8:30 to 9:00 P. M. Mountain Standard Time, and 7:30 to 8:00 P. M. Pacific Standard Time. The stations participating are as follows:

Boston, Mass. -- WBZA

Chicago, Ill.-- KYW

Cincinnati, Ohio -- WLW

Dallas, Texas -- WFAA

Denver, Colo. -- KOA

Detroit, Mich. -- WJR

Houston, Texas -- KPRC

Kansas City, Mo. -- WREN

Lincoln, Neb. -- KFAB

Los Angeles, Calif. -- KFI

Milwaukee, Wis. -- WTMJ

New York, N. Y. -- WJZ

Oklahoma City, Okla. -- WKY

Pittsburgh, Pa. -- KDKA

Portland, Ore. -- KGW

Rochester, N. Y. -- WHAM

St. Louis, Mo. -- KWK

St. Paul-Minneapolis, Minn. -- KSTP

Salt Lake City, Utah -- KSL

San Antonio, Texas -- WOAI

San Francisco, Calif. -- KGO

Seattle, Wash. -- KOMO

Spokane, Wash. -- KHQ

Springfield, Mass. -- WBZ

Superior, Wis. -- WEBC