The Writing of a Book
In attempting to solve the Colorado problem, Mackenzie King had felt that he could at the same time gather material -- indeed he could make material -- for his far-reaching study of industrial relations. He soon began to envisage the results of this study as taking the form of a book. Some of the ideas which he thought should be developed in such a book could be tried out in the coal-fields and steel-works where he would have a relatively free hand to experiment. He could turn all his observations to good account and he planned to make notes for future use in the chapters which were already taking shape in his mind.
At the end of 1915, after he had completed his mission in Colorado, he presented to the trustees of the foundation an interim report on the results of his first fifteen months' work. The report related almost entirely to what had been accomplished in Colorado. That work, he explained, had interfered with the progress he had hoped to make on the studies for which he was engaged. But it was an integral part of those studies -- he had used the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company as a kind of laboratory in which to test the practical bearing of some of his ideas on joint control of industry. More than that, it was essential that labour relations within the company (in which the Rockefellers and the foundation itself had large investments) be transformed and placed on a basis beyond reproach.