WE are here, as I understand, to unveil memorial busts of Americans distinguished in science. I, Sir, am honored by the privilege of speaking of Benjamin Franklin. This man, the father of American Science, was possessed of mental gifts unequaled in his day.
As a pioneer of American botany, John Torrey naturally finds a place among the men whose works we gladly celebrate to-day, in this grand institution, developed in the city where he was born, where he resided the greater part of his life, and where he died.
This time, one hundred years ago, Joseph Henry, whose name and fame we honor to-day, was a lad seven years of age. He was born at Albany, New York, of Scotch parentage, his grandparents on both sides having come from Scotland in the same ship to the Colony of New York, in 1775.
Of the naturalists of America no one stands out in more picturesque relief than Audubon, and no name is dearer than his to the hearts of the American people. Born at an opportune time, Audubon undertook and accomplished one of the most gigantic tasks that has ever fallen to the lot of one man to perform.
I think that the first time when I ever saw Agassiz was at one of his own lectures early in his American life. This was a description of his ascent of the Jungfrau. I think it was wholly extempore and though he was new in his knowledge of English, it was idiomatic and thoroughly intelligible.
It was my privilege to know James Dwight Dana intimately during my early years. To boyhood’s imagination his figure typified the man of science; his life personified the spirit of scientific discovery. Wider acquaintance with the world has not in any way dimmed the brightness of that early impression.
The life, the character, the work of Spencer Fullerton Baird entitle him to recognition in any assemblage and on any occasion where honor is to be paid to those who have been their county’s benefactors through illustrious achievements in science.
Joseph Leidy was born in Philadelphia, there he passed his three score years and ten, and there he died. For forty-five years he was an officer of the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Science, and a professor in the University of Pennsylvania for forty years.
COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY AND THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY
PROFESSOR HENRY FAIRFIELD OSBORN
In the beautiful marble portrait of Edward Drinker Cope, modeled by Mr. Couper and presented by President Jesup, you see the man of large brain, of keen eye, and of strong resolve, the ideal combination for a life of science, the man who scorns obstacles, who while battling with the present looks above and beyond.
IN the previous chapter it was shown how the primitive telephone set supplied to subscribers by the New Haven and other pioneer exchanges consisted only of a mahogany or rubber magneto hand telephone hung on a steel hook screwed into wall or board, and how the use of the circuit-breaking push button was the approved method of calling central.
NO one should be better qualified than a Jerseyman to speak on this subject, for no state in the union has suffered more in reputation and in arrested prosperity from mosquitoes than New Jersey. During the four or five years last past, I have had opportunity to observe conditions closely, and there is not a section whose development has not been in some way affected by this insect pest.
HOW SHALL THE DESTRUCTIVE TENDENCIES OF MODERN LIFE BE MET AND OVERCOME?
RICHARD COLE NEWTON
WHEN Bichat referred to civilization as 'nothing more than the environment which tends to destroy humankind,’ he had in mind, presumably, the so-called civilization of his own time, which we are willing to concede was considerably below that of to-day in every respect and far below that of the Greeks and Romans.
WHAT is the present state of mathematical physics? What are the problems it is led to set itself? What is its future? Is its orientation about to be modified? Ten years hence will the aim and the methods of this science appear to our immediate successors in the same light as to ourselves; or, on the contrary, are we about to witness a profound transformation?
SOME years ago, being with a camping party in the mountains, I returned from a solitary ramble to find every one engaged in a ferocious metaphysical dispute. The corpus of the dispute was a squirrel—a live squirrel supposed to be clinging to one side of a treetrunk; while over against the tree’s opposite side a human being was imagined to stand.
SO far civilization—Johnson ‘abominated’ the word and suggested civility ’ instead—has been considered philosophically, described historically, viewed esthetically and computed statistically. I say 'so far,’ and I may add ‘ so good,’ for by these disciplines the phenomena in question have been arrayed under their vicarious aspects with illuminating, impressive, interesting and significant results.
THE North Platte River rises in the semi-arid region of the North Park Mountains in Colorado and flows into Wyoming, its course through the latter state describing a rough quadrant of about one hundred and fifty miles radius, having for its center the southeast corner of the state.
PROFESSOR KIRKPATRICK’S article in a recent number of the POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY leads me to present the results of an investigation on practically the same lines, extending over several years when I was engaged in teaching college students to read German.
THE RESEARCH DEPARTMENTS OF THE CARNEGIE INSTITUTION
THE SAGE FOUNDATION
THE PROBLEMS OF ASTRONOMY
THE physicians of the country and the American Medical Association have long advocated the establishment of a department of public health as part of the national government, and they now have the cooperation of an influential committee of one hundred, which had its origin at the Ithaca meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.