TO arrive at an understanding of that tendency toward combination which is a most conspicuous phenomenon of the industrial life of the United States, it is necessary to trace the industrial development throughout its several stages. And as it has been in this country that industrial activity has met with the least hindrance, the steps of its development can be rapidly summarized with approximate accuracy.
THE title above might suggest a forest that has been shot through by the light of day, or some delightful dell where the rays of the sun make every spot enchanting. Quite otherwise, the lines to follow deal with the printing of pictures of sections of woods by means of the direct sunlight, and some of the points of structure thus brought to view.
ONE of the few things we seemed to be certain of with respect to child nature was that it is fancy-full. Childhood, we all know, is the age for dreaming, for decking out the as yet unknown world with the gay colors of imagination, for living a life of play or happy make-believe.
THE Signal Service was thoroughly organized as a meteorological body in November, 1870. As Americans we are justly proud of the work accomplished by it and its immediate successor the Weather Bureau. Toward the establishment and success of the meteorological service the army, the navy, and civil life contributed representative men: Myer, the soldier physician, dubbed by his countrymen “Old Probs”; Maury, the seaman whose pen could trace on many pages descriptions ever pleasing and instructive; and Ferrel, citizen professor amid military men, one so diffident and reserved that he carried to and from the meetings of the National Academy, of which he was a member, manuscripts of problems solved, which he would have liked to make known but that a strange shyness prevented.
IN no branch of insect work are more admirable means employed to bring about the desired ends, or is greater diversity of method found, than in that of insect architecture. The beauty of the buildings in many cases is incomparable, and generally speaking the abodes attain a magnitude colossal as compared with that of their creators.
IN this paper is given an account of a curious biological problem and of the progress which has been made toward its solution. The discussion may have a certain popular interest from the fact that it is a type of many problems in the structure and distribution of animals and plants which seem to be associated with the laws of evolution.
PROF. CHRISTIAN THEODOR ALBERT BILLROTH, one of the most eminent surgeons of the century, died at the Austrian winter resort Abbazia, on the Adriatic, February 6, 1894, in the sixty-fifth year of his age. He was born at Bergen, on the island of Rügen, the son of a Swedish Lutheran pastor, April 26, 1829; began the study of medicine in 1848 at Greifswald, in Pomerania, and, having continued his course at Göttingen and Berlin, was graduated in medicine from the latter university in 1852.
HOWEVER unhappy New York city may be in the matter of pavements between curbs, there is one fact apparent to the most casual observer, and that is that New York has the finest and best sidewalk pavements of any city in the universe. This is due to the fact that the sidewalks are largely paved with huge flat slabs of a natural product known in the commercial marts of New York as North or Hudson River bluestone.
LADY MARY WORTLEY MONTAGU AND MODERN BACTERIOLOGY.
MRS. H. M. PLUNKETT
IN all the history of modern scientific progress there is no more beautiful instance of the way in which the torch of knowledge is passed from hand to hand as generation succeeds generation, each holder adding his increment of light to the flame, than that to be seen in the interlinking of the work of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and Edward Jenner with that of Pasteur and Lister and Koch, and the multitude of illustrious seekers now striving to reveal to us the whole world of man's microscopical friends and enemies.
THE Hon. George S. Boutwell, in the November number of The Popular Science Monthly, referred to a recent article by Prof. W. W. Aber on the Oswego State Normal School, in which is claimed for that school the credit of introducing into this country the Pestalozzian system of teaching.
AMONG the many changes that have taken place in the manufacture and handling of lumber, there is none more marked or interesting than in the method of preparing lumber for use by getting rid of its natural or acquired moisture. For a century and a half after sawed lumber came into use, none but natural means were used for drying it, preparatory to its consumption in the building and kindred arts.
ALTHOUGH from infancy upward we are all, whether we know it or not, close students of physiognomy, and although a number of books, the result of much careful research, have been published upon the scientific aspect of the subject, there are certain facts connected with facial expression which, though often remarked upon, have never received explanation.
MR. EDWARD A. FREEMAN, the eminent English historian, has given us a short and popular definition of history in the phrase, “History is past politics.” While it is true that history includes past politics, and that the political events of to-day become the history of to-morrow, we must acknowledge that the province of history is more extensive than is indicated in this pithy phrase if we are ready to admit, as it seems we should, that the highest end of history is ethical and social, and not merely political.
WHEREVER the investigating minds of scientists are at work promoting the insight of man into the mysteries of Nature, wherever friends of natural philosophy are keenly alive to the importance of this comparatively new field of study, a field in which lie some of the most essential interests of modern civilization, there will be sincere and deep regret over the death of a young professor whose splendid career came to an untimely end on the first day of this year.
THE readers of this magazine will, we are sure, appreciate the satisfaction with which we have lately hailed the appearance of a biography, done by a most competent hand, of the late Prof. E. L. Youmans. This biography is one which all who were measurably acquainted with the late professor’s work in the cause of science felt must be given to the world.
THE author of this work is acting assistant keeper in the Department of Egyptian and Assyrian Antiquities in the British Museum. The matter of it was originally written to form the introduction to the catalogue of the Egyptian collection in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, and was intended to supply the information necessary for understanding the object and use of the antiquities described therein.
Meeting of the American Association.— The forty-third meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science will be held in Brooklyn, N. Y., August 15th to 24th. The names of the officers were given in The Popular Science Monthly for October, 1893.
THE third summer session of the School of Applied Ethics is to be held at Plymouth, Mass., July 12th to August 15th. A special feature will be the attention given to the labor question and allied subjects in each of the departments. In the Department of Economics the relation of economics to social progress will be discussed by leading economists from different universities.