THE DEVELOPMENT OF AMERICAN INDUSTRIES SINCE COLUMBUS. X.
EDWIN ATLEE BARBER
FOREIGN writers would have the world believe that the United States can boast of no ceramic history. Even our own chroniclers have, singularly enough, neglected a branch of our industrial progress which is not altogether insignificant nor devoid of interest.
WHAT we call institutions are only organized and hereditary instincts, and are common to man and the lower animals. The original social character of animals, which forms the basis of their institutions, is also the quality that renders them capable of domestication.
IN the composing-room of the New York Tribune some forty type-casting machines have been used for several years. The foreman informed me in October last that all the ordinary reading-matter in the Tribune was being “set” by these inventions, and expressed himself perfectly satisfied with the working of the machines.
ONE of the saddest sights of our civilization is the spectacle of disease and pain which confronts us on every side. It is rare indeed to find even an individual perfectly well, to say nothing of families and communities. But why is it ? Barbarians and savages do not so suffer.
UNDER this subject we shall consider a variety of different matters—the dress of religious officers; the dress of worshipers; the dress of victims; the garb of mourners; amulets and charms; and the religious meaning of mutilations. In any society we need to know four individuals only—the babe, the woman, the priest, and the dead man.
III FRUITS. — Botanically speaking, the cereal grains of which we have spoken are true fruits, that is to say, are ripened ovaries, but for all practical purposes they may be regarded as seeds. The fruits, of which mention is now to be made, are those commonly spoken of in our markets as fruits.
SEVERAL years ago, while walking down the lower Connecticut valley with a party of students, we chanced upon a curious ledge of rock surmounting a low ridge by the road that runs from Berlin to Meriden, about half-way between Hartford and New Haven.
AN analysis of our own psychic life, complex as much of it is, compared with that of the dog, shows that a great part of our mental processes are not concerned with abstractions and generalizations of a very high order, but with actual concrete perceptions and conceptions; that we think in pictures rather than words; that our thoughts are the result of past associations;, that the machinery of the mind or brain is so connected that when one part is moved, so to speak, a whole series of connections are established.
THE remark occurs in a recent editorial article in a prominent religious newspaper commending the eight-hour movement that if all the women who want silk dresses could have work, all the silk factories in the country could be set in motion and would furnish employment to the many thousands of people then idle; or words of that import.
SOME of the most enchanting phenomena in nature are dependent for their very existence upon singularly unimportant things; and some phenomena that in one form or another daily attract our attention are produced by startlingly overlooked material.
THE discovery of the periodic law in the atomic weights of the elements has furnished chemists with a new standard of accuracy and a new guide in research. While it must be regarded as Mendeleef’s most conspicuous scientific achievement, the Russian chemist is the author of many other labors of hardly less real importance.
SIR : The article What keeps the Bicycler Upright ? in the Monthly for last April was a very interesting one, especially to wheelmen, but I think it needs a little supplementary statement to make it complete. Mr. Charles B. Warring, the author, states that the rider’s lost equilibrium is restored by bringing his point of support under him, and gives the impression that this point can be moved square to the right or left, like the foot of Mr. Warring’s A-frame, saying nothing about the forward movement of the wheel.
FORTY years ago or less the apostle of the hour was Carlyle, the fashionable gospel was the gospel of force, and the hope of the world was supposed to lie in the advent of certain heroes, strong, resolute men, who were to heal our social and other diseases by the prescriptions of a benevolent despotism.
THE topics considered in these lectures include not only the special unfolding of each branch of science, but also sketches of the leading evolutionists and outlines of their methods. The first of the series is a concise and excellent review of A. R. Wallace and his work, by Prof. E. D. Cope.
Association of Official Geologists.—The preliminary steps were taken at Washington during the meetings of the International Geological Congress toward the formation of an official organization of the directors of State and national geological surveys.
MR. H. A. HAZEN maintained in the American Association that the opinion that tornadoes whirl is a mistaken one. Of the two ways of learning the shape of tornadoes, that of observing them directly is burdened with difficulties, and is neither satisfactory nor accurate; while the study of them by observation of their débris is easy, and will lead to correct conclusions.