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Title: Scientific American Supplement, No. 611, September 17, 1887
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Scientific American Supplement, No. 611, September 17, 1887" ***

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[Illustration]



SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN SUPPLEMENT NO. 611



NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 17, 1887

Scientific American Supplement. Vol. XXIV., No. 611.

Scientific American established 1845

Scientific American Supplement, $5 a year.

Scientific American and Supplement, $7 a year.

       *       *       *       *       *



TABLE OF CONTENTS.


                                                                    PAGE
I.  BIOGRAPHY.--The New Statue of Philip Lebon.--Biography of
    the French pioneer inventor of gas lighting, with notes on
    the recent inauguration of his statue.--1 illustration.         9757

II. CHEMISTRY.--The Analysis of Urine.--An elaborate investigation
    of the method of analyzing chemically and microscopically
    this fluid, with illustrations of the apparatus employed.--4
    illustrations                                                   9758

III. ELECTRICITY.--Electrical Alarm for Pharmacists.--An apparatus
    for indicating to the pharmacist when he removes from the
    shelf a bottle containing poison.--2 illustrations.             9753

    Electric Steel Railways.--By GEORGE W. MANSFIELD.--A full
    discussion of the problem of electric railways; comparison
    with horse and cable traction.                                  9752

IV. ENGINEERING.--Improved Oscillating Hydraulic Motor.--A
    small motor for household use, as for driving sewing machines
    and other domestic machinery.--8 illustrations.                 9751

    The Ceara Harbor Works.--A remarkable engineering work now
    in progress in Brazil; the formation of an artificial
    harbor.--4 illustrations.                                       9752

V.  GEOLOGY.--Notes of a Recent Visit to Some of the
    Petroleum-Producing Territories of the United States and
    Canada.--By BOVERTON REDWOOD, F.I.C., F.C.S.--The second
    portion of this valuable paper, treating more particularly
    of Canadian petroleum.                                          9765

VI. METEOROLOGY.--The "Meteorologiske Institut" at Upsala,
    and Cloud Measurements.--The methods used and results
    attained in the famous Upsala observatory under Profs. Ekholm
    and Hagström; the measurement of clouds.--1 illustration.       9764

VII. MISCELLANEOUS.--Drawing Instrument for Accurate Work.--By
    J. LEHRKE.--A magnifying instrument for fine work and
    measurements.--2 illustrations.                                 9754

    Liquid and Gaseous Rings.--Notes on the production of vortex
    rings.--The different aspects and breaking up of smoke
    rings.--6 illustrations.                                        9760

    Scenes among the Extinct Volcanoes of Rhineland.--The
    picturesque features of the geological formations of this
    region described.--10 illustrations.                            9762

    Shall We Have a National Horse?--An eloquent plea by RANDOLPH
    HUNTINGTON for the production of a good type of animal.--Use
    of the Arabian horse as an improver of the breed.               9760

VIII. NAVAL ENGINEERING.--Trial Trip of the Ohio.--The remarkable
    results attained by the introduction of new boilers and
    machinery in an American steamship.                             9751

IX. PHYSIOLOGY.--Apparatus for Determining Mechanically the
    Reaction Period of Hearing.--An interesting study of the time
    of transmission of an impulse through the sensor and motor
    nerves.--1 illustration.                                        9753

X. SANITATION.--A New Disinfector.--Description of a new apparatus
    for disinfecting by superheated steam and air, with tabular
    statement of elaborate tests made with it.--2 illustrations.    9754

    Trees from a Sanitary Aspect.--By CHARLES ROBERTS, F.R.C.S.,
    etc.--The sanitary value of trees considered by this eminent
    sanitarian.--The uses and abuses of shade near houses.          9765

XI. TECHNOLOGY.--A New Alkali Process.--The Parnell & Simpson
    process of making carbonate of soda, combining the features of
    the Leblanc and ammonia methods.                                9755

    A New Process for the Distillation and Concentration of Chemical
    Liquids.--By GEORGE ANDERSON, of London.--An apparatus
    and process especially adapted to the manufacture of sulphate of
    ammonia.--The invention of Alex. Angus Croll described.--1
    illustration.                                                   9757

    Barlow's Machine for Moulding Candles.--A new apparatus for
    candle manufacture, fully described and illustrated.--5
    illustrations.                                                  9754

    Temperature of Gas Distillation.--The mooted question discussed
    by Mr. WM. FOULIS, the eminent gas engineer.                    9756

    The Largest Black Ash Furnace in the World.--Note of a recent
    furnace for use in the Leblanc process of soda manufacture.     9756

       *       *       *       *       *



IMPROVED OSCILLATING HYDRAULIC MOTOR.


The motor of MM. Schaltenbrand & Moller is adapted for use for
household purposes, where small power is required, as in driving
sewing machines.

Fig. 1 shows the motor with all its parts in side elevation, the
flywheel and head rest being in section. Fig. 2 is a side view, with
the air reservoir and distribution valve in section through the line
1-2. Figs. 3 and 4 represent the same apparatus, but without support,
as where it is to be used on the table of a sewing machine, with the
crank of the motor directly fastened to the flywheel of the sewing
machine. Fig. 5 is a plan or horizontal section at the level of the
line 3-4, and Fig. 6 is a section passing through the same line, but
only including the cylinder and axis of the distributing valve. Fig. 7
is a horizontal section of the button of the cock through the line 5-6
of Fig. 3. Finally, Fig. 8 shows in detail, plan, and elevation the
arrangement of the starting valve.

[Illustration: Figs. 1 through 8 IMPROVED OSCILLATING HYDRAULIC MOTOR.]

This little motor does not show any new principle. It uses the old
oscillating cylinder, but it embraces in its construction ingenious
details which render its application very simple and very easy,
especially, as we have already said, to sewing machines.

In the first place, the oscillating bronze cylinder, A, is cast in one
piece with the distribution cock, _a_, Fig. 3, and its seat, _b_, also
of bronze, is adjusted and fastened by means of the screw, _b_, to the
air reservoir, C', cast with its cistern, C, acting as foundation or
bed plate for the motor. This cistern is held either on the base of
the cast iron bearing frame, D, of the main shaft, _d_, _d_, Figs. 1
and 2, or directly on the sewing machine table, Figs. 3 and 4, by
means of two pins, _e_ and _e'_, so that it can oscillate about an
axis which is perpendicular to the shaft, _d_, to which is attached
the disk, F, carrying the crank.

This arrangement of parts, in combination with the horizontal axis of
the distribution valve and with the piston rod, _g_, considered as a
vertical axis of rotation, forms a species of universal joint between
the crank pin and the table, so that it can be put in place without
adjustment by any workman, who only has to screw up the two screws,
_h_, to fasten to the table the standard, E, and the piece, E', in
which are screwed the pivots, _e_ and _e'_, which support the tank,
and this all the rest of the motor.

As is seen more clearly in Fig. 2, the water under pressure enters by
the pipe, _c_, to which is attached a small tube of India rubber, and
leaves by the pipe, _c'_, and is carried away by another India rubber
tube.

The openings of the distribution cock are symmetrically pierced in the
seat and plug, which latter is divided internally by a horizontal
diaphragm so arranged that at each oscillation communication is
established alternately above and below the piston. So that it can be
started or stopped quickly, the opening and closing of the throttle
valve, _i_ (Fig. 2), is effected by a single pulling movement upon the
handle, I, and this draws out the valve horizontally. For this end the
lever is pivoted upon the extremity of the valve stem, and ends in a
bar engaging with a fork which acts as its fulcrum. This fork is cast
in one piece with the plug, J, which closes the opening through which
the valve is put in place, as shown in detail in Fig. 8. To prevent
the lever from spinning out of the fork when it is pulled or pushed,
this lever is prevented from turning by the valve stem, provided for
this purpose with a double rib, _i'_ (Figs. 2 and 8), which engages in
slots in one piece, _j_, secured in the interior of the plug, J.

Lest the friction of the conical distribution valve oscillating with
the cylinder should occasion a loss of power, care is taken to leave
the key free in its seat, _b_, by not forcing the pivot, _k_ (Figs. 1,
3, and 5), whose position in its seat is regulated by the screw, _k'_.
It follows that a very slight escape of water may be produced, but
that does no harm, as it is caught in the reservoir, C, provided with
a little pipe, K (Figs. 1 and 3), to carry it away.

To maintain proper relations between the pressure of the water, or the
work it is called upon to do, and the motor, the quantity of water
introduced into the cylinder at each stroke of the piston is regulated
by adjusting the length of stroke by the crank pin. For this end the
course of the latter is made variable by means of the piece, _f_,
adjusted by set-screw in the interior of the disk, F (Figs. 3 and 7),
and tapped for the reception of a screw terminated by a milled button,
_f_. If this button is turned, it moves the piece, _f_, and therefore
regulates the distance of the crank pin, _g'_, to which the piston
rod, _g_, is attached (Fig. 3) from the center of rotation.

When the motor is arranged as shown in Figs. 1 and 2, or for the
transmission of motion by means of a band wheel, _p_, cast in one with
the flywheel, P, the disk which receives the crank pin of variable
position is fixed directly upon the axle, _d_, of the same flywheel
carried by the support, D; but when the motor can be applied directly,
as is the case for example in the Singer sewing machine, upon the axle
of the machine, no support is used, and the arrangement shown in Figs.
3 and 4 is adopted. In this case the disk, F', is cast with three arms
which serve, by means of a screw, to fasten it to the flywheel carried
by the axle of the sewing machine.

When the motor is used on the upper stories of buildings, the changes
of speed incidental to drawing the water from the lower stories from
the same pipe can be compensated by the use of an accumulator. This
accessory apparatus is composed of a reservoir of a capacity of 10
liters or more, intercalated in the pipe which supplies the motor, so
that the water coming from the principal pipe enters the bottom of
this reservoir, passing through an India rubber valve opening inward,
the supply for the motor coming through a tube always open and placed
above this valve. The air trapped in the accumulator is compressed by
the water, and when the pressure in the pipe decreases, the valve
closes and the compressed air drives the water through the motor with
decreasing pressure until normal pressure is re-established in the
pipes.--_Publication Industrielle._

       *       *       *       *       *



TRIAL TRIP OF THE OHIO.


Some important trials of the new machinery of the screw steamer Ohio,
belonging to the International Navigation Company, have recently taken
place on the Clyde. The Ohio is an American built steamer measuring
343 ft. by 43 ft. by 34 ft. 6 in., and of 3,325 tons gross. She has
been entirely refitted with new engines and boilers by Messrs. James
Howden & Co., Glasgow, who also rearranged the bunker, machinery, and
hold spaces, so as to give the important advantage of increased cargo
accommodation obtainable from the use of their improved machinery,
which occupies considerably less space than the engines and boilers of
the same power which have been replaced. The new engines are of the
triple expansion type, and the boilers, which are designed for
supplying steam of 150 lb. pressure, are worked on Howden's system of
forced draught, which combines increased power with high economy in
fuel. The object of the owners in refitting the Ohio was to test the
capability and economy of this system of forced draught on a
sufficient scale to guide them in dealing with steamships of the
largest class and great power.

In the refit of the Ohio the boilers were designed to work with a very
moderate air pressure, this being sufficient for the power required by
the contract. The combined power and economy, however, guaranteed by
Messrs. Howden & Co. for the use of their system of forced draught was
higher than has hitherto been attempted in any steamship, and
sufficient, if attained, to prove the large reduction that could
safely be made in the number and size of boilers for the use of the
system, and the quantity of coal required to produce a given power.
The contract for the refit of the steamer required that 2,100
indicated horse power (which was the maximum power of the engines
removed) should be maintained during the trial on a consumption of
1.25 lb. of coal per indicated horse power per hour. Originally the
boilers of the Ohio, from which this power was produced, were three in
number, double ended, 12 ft. 6 in. in diameter by 17 ft. 6 in. in
length, having each six furnaces 3 ft. in diameter, or eighteen
furnaces in all, with an aggregate fire grate area of 300 square feet.
The new boilers, fitted with the forced draught, are likewise three in
number, but single ended, 13 ft. in diameter by 11 ft. 2 in. in
length, having each three furnaces 3 ft. 3 in. in diameter, or nine
furnaces in all, with an aggregate fire grate area of 112 square feet.
Air for combustion is supplied to the boilers by one of Messrs. W.H.
Allen & Co.'s fans, 5 ft. 6 in. in diameter, driven direct by an
engine having a cylinder 7 in. in diameter with stroke of 4 in. The
boilers removed had two stoke holds across the ship, one fore and one
aft of the boilers, while the new boilers have only one stoke hold on
the after side. The engines removed have cylinders 57 in. and 90 in.
in diameter by 48 in. stroke, while the new engines have three
cylinders 31 in., 46 in., and 72 in. in diameter respectively, with
piston stroke of 51 in.

During the trials the coals were weighed out under the supervision of
the officers of the company, who also took the record of speed and
other data. After running down Channel for a considerable time, the
trial on the coals weighed out began, and lasted 4 hours 10 minutes,
during which time 10,885 lb. of Welsh coal were burned, the trial
ending with the same revolutions of engines and the same pressure in
boilers with which it began. The mean indicated horse power,
calculated from the mean of seven sets of indicator cards, taken
during the trial, and the mean revolutions per minute, found by
dividing the total revolutions recorded on the engine counter by the
minutes in the period of the trial, amounted to 2,124, thus making the
consumption 1.23 lb. per indicated horse power per hour, and the power
per square foot of fire grate almost exactly 19 indicated horse power.
While testing the indicated horse power and consumption of coal, the
steamer ran to and fro between the Cloch and Cumbrae lights, and also
made several runs on the measured mile at Skelmorlie, from which the
mean speed of the vessel was found to be 14.12 knots per hour. The
remarkably high results obtained were most satisfactory to the
representatives of the owners, and a large party of experts on board
congratulated Mr. Howden on the successful fulfillment of the onerous
guarantees undertaken.--_Engineering._

       *       *       *       *       *



THE CEARA HARBOR WORKS.


The works illustrated by the engravings are now being constructed
under a concession from the imperial government of Brazil. The
province of Ceara has an area of about 50,000 square miles, and is one
of the richest in Brazil. Its produce comprises sugar, coffee, cocoa,
cotton, tobacco, spices, fruit, cabinet and dye woods, India rubber,
etc. Its population at the last census, taken in 1877, amounted to
952,624 inhabitants, that of the capital, the city and port of Ceara,
being about 40,000. Although Ceara is the principal seaport at which
lines of English, French, American, Brazilian, and other steamers
regularly call, prior to the commencement of the harbor improvements
it was almost an open roadstead, passengers and goods having to be
conveyed by lighters and boats between vessels and the shore. The
official statistics of the trade and shipping of the port show that an
income of £35,750 per annum will be collected by the Ceara harbor
corporation from the dues which they are authorized by their
concession to charge on all imports and exports and on the vessels
using the port and from the rent of the bonded warehouses.

[Illustration: NEW HARBOR WORKS, CEARA, BRAZIL.]

The drawings given here show the nature of the works, which are of a
simple character. The depth of water along the principal quay, which
is being constructed of solid concrete, and is connected with the
shore by an iron and steel viaduct over 750 ft. in length--which is
already completed--will be 19 ft. at low water and 25 ft. at high.
This quay and breakwater is shown in perspective, in plan, and in
section, and is of a very heavy section, as will be gathered by the
scale given immediately below it. Meanwhile the landing of cargo is
temporarily carried on at the end of the viaduct, which at high tide
has a depth of about 20 ft. of water. The custom house and bonded
warehouses are being built of the fine granite obtained at the Monguba
quarries, which adjoin the Baturite railway, about sixteen miles from
the port. A new incline has also been constructed from the rail way
down to the port. The line has been laid along the viaduct, and will
be extended over the quays as soon as they are completed. The
concrete, of which a large quantity is being used, is mixed by Carey &
Latham's patent mixers, and the contractors have supplied the very
large and complete plant for carrying out the operations.

The engineer to the corporation is Mr. R.E. Wilson, M. Inst. C.E.,
Westminster, and his resident at Ceara is Mr. R.T.H. Saunders, M.
Inst. C.E. The contractors for the work are Messrs. Punchard,
McTaggart & Co., their representative at Ceara being Mr. George
Wilson, M. Inst. C.E._--The Engineer._

       *       *       *       *       *



ELECTRIC STREET RAILROADS.

BY GEORGE W. MANSFIELD.


Why should we prefer electricity as the propelling agent of our street
cars over all other known methods? I answer, without hesitation,
because it is the best, and being the best is the cheapest. Briefly I
will present the grounds upon which I take my stand.

To-day the only methods for tramway service are three in number:
Horses, with a history of fifty years and over; cables, with a history
of fifteen years; and electricity, with a history of two years. I give
the latter two years on the basis of the oldest electric street
railroad in existence to-day, and that is the Baltimore railroad,
equipped with the Daft system.

The main points for consideration common to each are six in number:

    1st. Obtaining of franchise.
    2d. Construction of buildings, viz., engine house or stable.
    3d. Equipment--rolling stock, horses, engines and dynamos.
    4th. Construction of tramway.
    5th. Cost of operation.
    6th. Individual characteristics and advantages.

Each of these requires a paper by itself, but in as concise a way as
possible, presenting only the salient reasons and figures, I shall
endeavor to embody it in one.

1st. Obtaining of franchise.

I assume the municipal officers and the promoters honest men.

It is the universal settled conviction that a street car propelled
with certainty and promptness by mechanical means is infinitely to be
preferred to horses. Hence, if this guarantee can be given, there need
be no fear from the other side of the house. Years of experience prove
that this guarantee can be given.

The mechanical methods are electricity and the cable. To suit local
conditions the former has three general applications--overhead,
underground, and accumulator systems; while the latter has but one,
the underground. Hence, the former, electricity, has three chances to
the latter's one to meet the whims, opinions, or decisions of
municipal authorities. Other advantages accruing from mechanical
methods are cleaner streets, absence of noise, quick time, no
blockades, no stables accumulating filth and breeding pestilence, and
lastly the great moral sympathetic feeling for man's most faithful and
valuable servant, the horse. These all are directly in favor of
obtaining the right franchise.

The three general ways of obtaining the same are a definite payment of
cash to the authorities, a guarantee of an annual payment of a certain
per cent. of the earnings, and lastly a combination of the two. For
the city or town the latter way is the safest, and the best, all
things considered. As electricity is mechanical, and as it can be
shown that it is the cheapest to construct and most economical, and
has three chances to operate, it stands by far the most likely to
obtain the franchise.

2d. Construction of buildings.

The governing factors under this head are the local land valuation and
tax. The system necessitating a spread eagle policy on the land
question will cost. What could be a more perfect illustration than the
horse railroad system? The motive power of the New York Central
Railroad between New York and Albany could be comfortably stowed in
the barns of some of the New York City street railways. What a
contrast! The real estate, buildings, and fixtures of the Third Ave.
line are valued at $1,524,000, and what buildings! Cattle sheds in the
metropolis of America. Surely they did not cost a tithe of this great
sum. What did? The land, a whole block and more. Henry George
advocates might find food for thought here. All this is true of the
other lines in every city in the Union. Enormous expenditures for
land. A good one half of their capital sunk in purchasing the
necessary room. Go where you will, a good fifty per cent. of the
capital is used for land for their stables. This obviously does not
include equipment.

How is it with mechanical systems? The land is one of the minor
considerations, the last thing considered. Let us look at some
figures. From careful examination of many engine plants, considering
the ratio between a certain number of horses with their necessary
adjuncts and a steam plant of numerically equal power, I find it
stands as 1 to 30. That is, a steam plant complete of 30 horse power
capacity would need only one thirtieth the floor space of thirty
horses. With larger powers this ratio is still greater, and from one
estimate I found that it stood as 1 to 108, i.e., for horses I should
have to have 108 times more floor space than for an equal number of
mechanical horse power. It must be remembered also that the mechanical
horse power is 50 per cent. greater than the best animal horsepower.

From one maker, taking the engine alone, I found that a rated 100
horse power engine, guaranteed in every particular, would have ample
room in the stall for one horse in the average stable. Another
instance showed that I could get a steam plant complete, engine,
boiler, etc., of 50 horse power, in a space 5 by 6 feet, which is
smaller than the average stall. Here is shown the enormous saving in
land purchase.

For car room a building several stories high would answer perfectly,
since quick-hoisting elevators could be put in and the tracks on each
floor have wire connections with the dynamos, so that the cars could
be run across the floor to where you please, facilitating storage and
dispensing with handling. This would not be possible with the cable.

Comparing electricity and cable on this point, all things favor the
former clearly and beyond all question. Furthermore, if locality so
favored, the subject of land purchase for electricity could be tabooed
entirely, since distance can be so readily overcome. Way out in the
suburbs or back in the country by the side of some waterfall, your
station might be, while the current is sent to the great city over
heavy conductors. Here land rent or tax would be at the minimum. With
horses or cable plainly proximity must be had. It is estimated that
the land occupied by the Madison Avenue line of New York City is worth
the cost of 40 miles of ordinary double track.

3d. Equipment at station and rolling stock.

The rolling stock would be in each case approximately the same.
Consisting of cars of equal seating capacity, the difference of cost
would be the necessary attachments for the mechanical systems.

  A first class 16 foot horse car costs $1,200;
  A first class 16 foot cable car costs about $1,800; and
  A first class 16 foot electric car costs about $2,200.
  Rates: Electricity, 1; horse, 0.54; cable, 0.81.

I believe, however, that the mechanical system is bound to work
material changes in car construction, in fact it is almost imperative.
In all probability a car with 15 to 20 per cent. greater seating
capacity than the horse car can be constructed on a different plan for
the price given for the electric car. This price, it must be noted, is
the one for attachment of motor to the present horse car. The horse
cars produced to-day are most carefully planned, thoroughly built, and
admirably adapted to their service, but the inexorable law of progress
decrees their extinction, for something better.

Motive power. To represent clearly the costs, etc., of the three
systems under this head, let us assume a road. Take, if you please, a
double line 6 miles long, and operating 24 cars with speed of 6 miles
an hour, and running 20 hours out of 24. This would call for 48 horses
on the track and 192 horses in the stables, or a total of 240 horses;
at $160, counting harness, etc., this would cost $38,400.

With electricity we will proceed as follows: The weight of car with 30
passengers and motor attachments would be about 9,000 lb. It is easily
calculated that to propel the same at the specified rate on a level
would take about 1.75 horse power, a total of 42 horse power. To make
allowances for grades we can calculate that, if the entire road was
one gradient of three per cent., each car would take about 6.4 horse
power, or since only 12 are going up, a total of 76.8 horse power. It
will be fair now to take the average of these two, or 59.4 horse power
for an average road. Allowing 35 per cent. loss from engine to work
done in actually propelling car, we would have to have 91.3 horse
power. Allowing a good safety factor, it would be well to put in a 150
horse power plant. This would cost complete $7,000; necessary dynamos,
$3,500. Among these figures should be counted cost of conductor of
sufficient size to allow of but three per cent. in energy to overcome
its resistance. This I have calculated using a potential of 600 volts;
and find that the total cost of six miles copper conductor is $16,000
with above conditions. The total cost is now seen to be $26,500.

As to cables, since the recovery of energy available for tractive
purposes is but 35 percent., then the engine of 169 horse power
represents what must be had. Allowing a generous factor of safety, let
us say that a 250 is all sufficient. This would cost complete and
erected about $12,000. The cable would cost $15.000, and gears, etc.,
$8,000, making a total of $35,000.

The ratio of the three systems stands: Electricity, 1; cable, 1.09;
horse, 1.45.

4th. Construction of tramway.

Figures upon this point must necessarily be either averages or
approximations. The nature of the locality socially, naturally, and we
grieve to say it, politically, has a strong influence upon its
construction. Estimating on single track only, a horse road would cost
as an average $9,000 per mile. With electricity we have several
methods we can avail ourselves of: Surface, costing about $10,000;
overhead double conductor, $15.696; underground, $23,500.

With cable but one method, the underground, is possible. This cost is
variously estimated at from $30,000 to $110,000 per mile; however, the
latter figure is excessive. A fair average would be $35,000.

The ratio of constructions could be fairly placed as follows, putting
electricity as 1, by taking the average of the three methods at
$16,732: Horse road, 0.53; cable, 2.09.

Unquestionably a great majority of roads of the past have not been
constructions of engineering, and of all places requiring care, skill,
and engineering, the street roads are the places.

5th. Cost of operation.

A fair figure for cost of one horse for one year is $220.

For electricity, allowing 35 per cent. loss in transmission, etc.,
1.54 horsepower would be the work done by engine to get 1 horse power
on the track. There are to-day plenty of steam plants producing 1
horse power for work at from $30 to $50 per annum. Take the average,
$40. With electricity then $65 would well represent the price of
producing 1.54 horsepower.

With cable these figures would hold true, but more work is required. A
greater loss is entailed. Since but 32 per cent. is recovered, the
figure for 1 horse power on the track would be 2.86 horse power. At
the above rates this would be $110 per horse power per year.

Our ratio here is: Electricity, 1; cables, 1.71; horses, 3.38.

This is by no means the whole of the story, for just here must we
compute the depreciation and hence repairs due to time. Let us take
the road figured on heretofore, and make three tables.

In the following I have under each system taken the estimated costs,
allowed a fair per cent. for depreciation, summed up and obtained the
ratios.

Any figure then like interest, etc., which would not affect ratios, I
have omitted.

    ELECTRICITY.

  Conductors, 1 per cent.                  $160.00
  Engine and dynamos, 5 per cent.           525.00
  Cars, 10 per cent.                      5,280.00
  Roadway, 10 per cent.                   2,007.00
                                       -----------
  Total.                                 $7,972.00

    HORSES.

  Horses and appurtenances, 20 per cent. $7,780.00
  Cars, 10 per cent.                      2,880.00
  Roadway, etc., 10 per cent.             3,500.00
                                        -----------
  Total.                                $11,740.00

    CABLES.

  Cable, 50 per cent.                    $7,500.00
  Engine and boiler, etc., 5 per cent.    1,000.00
  Cars, 10 per cent.                      4,320.00
  Roadway, 10 per cent.                   3,500.00
                                       ------------
  Total.                                $16,320.00

These totals put in ratio are as follows: Electricity, 1; cable, 2.04;
and horses, 1.47.

Placing all the ratios obtained in a table, we have the following:

                       Electricity.   Horses.   Cables.
  Depreciation.             1           1.47     2.04
  Operating expenses.       1           3.38     1.71
  Construction of tramway.  1           0.53     2.09
  Motors, cars, etc.        1           1.63     1.21
  Cars.                     1           0.54     0.81
                           ---          ----     ----
  Totals.                   5           7.55     7.86
  Average.                  1           1.51     1.57

Now this table must stand by itself for what it represents, and no
more. It will be noted that I have not introduced the subject of men.
This would unquestionably show favorably for both electricity and
cable. Again, note, please, that this table does not represent your
profits exactly as per ratios. I have to get them operated the same
number of cars and under the same headway. Now with either electricity
or cable a higher rate of speed can be maintained with but a very
small proportionate increase of cost. This means quicker time, more
trips, and greater receipts.

Evidently, as a financial investment, even if cost of maintenance and
operating is greater, the cable is to be preferred to horses.

How is it with electricity? The ratios of expenses, etc., stand for
themselves, the law of speed is far simpler than with cable, bringing
even greater receipts, and again in practice the saving of coal in
proportion to work done on track day or night is immensely more
economical than with the cable. This point will be touched upon later.

6th. Individual characteristics and advantages.

Under this head a few of the salient features of each system will be
mentioned. As the possibilities and limitations of the horse railroad
system are, however, so well known, it is needless to go over them. I
therefore will confine myself to the electric and cable systems.

With electricity single track lines, crooked streets, all descriptions
of turnouts, crossings, branches, etc., are as easy to construct and
operate as with horses. With the cable system they are either
impossible or enormously expensive.

With electricity the line is not a unit, so that the complete stoppage
of the whole line is absolutely impossible. With cable it is a unit
and it is possible.

With electricity the life of the conductor is infinite; with cable,
two years.

With electricity, and the improvements now being made in traction
wheels, etc., the heaviest grades are as easily surmounted as with the
cable; although it is true that for grades exceptional in character,
such as 20 per cent. grades or over, I should be willing to give the
contract to cable.

With electricity any speed can be attained by the individual cars.
They are absolutely independent. Lost time can be made up, etc. With
cable the cars are dependent upon speed of cable. Lost time cannot be
made up except on down grades.

With electricity work done by engine is synchronous with work done on
the track at any time of the day or night, with the loss of 35 per
cent. due to the conversions in each case. In other words, for every
horse power of useful work done on track the engine does 1.54 horse
power. This ratio is constant. It makes no difference whether 1 or 100
horse power of work is necessary on the track, the engine has but to
do 35 per cent. in excess.

With cable, if 1 horse power of work is all that is required on the
track, the engine may be doing 25 horse power to get that amount there
through the gears and cable. With heavier loads this is somewhat
diminished, but about the very best figure that can be put forth is
but 35 per cent. recovery, with 65 per cent. loss--the exact converse
of electricity under heavy loads.--_Street Railway Journal._

       *       *       *       *       *



ELECTRICAL ALARM FOR PHARMACIES.


[Illustration: FIG. 1.]

To avoid the errors which sometimes occur in a pharmacy or in a
laboratory, where one bottle is taken for another, especially in the
case of those containing highly poisonous or dangerous substances, a
simple arrangement, shown in the cuts, has been proposed. The
apparatus, in principle, is a species of electrical alarm, in circuit
with an ordinary house telegraph line. It consists essentially, as
shown in Fig. 1, of a battery, bell, and pedestal, provided with an
electric contact on which the flask rests. Fig. 2 shows this contact
or break piece. On a series of pedestals thus arranged and
intercalated in the same circuit the flasks containing poisonous or
dangerous substances, whose inadvertent handling might cause trouble,
are placed. In removing one of these flasks the circuit is closed, and
the electric bell notifies the pharmacist of the danger attendant on
the use of the substances contained in the flask referred to, thus
guarding against the errors due to carelessness, and quite too
frequent, especially in pharmacies.--_Chronica Cientifica._

[Illustration: FIG. 2.]

       *       *       *       *       *



APPARATUS FOR DETERMINING MECHANICALLY THE REACTION PERIOD OF
HEARING.


The following apparatus, constructed after the designs of Dr. Loeb,
assistant in the Physiological Institute at Wurzburg, is for the
purpose of measuring the reaction period of hearing, that is, the
period which elapses between the time when a sound wave affects the
auditory nerve and is thence transferred to the brain, then affecting
the consciousness, and the moment when the motor nerves can be thrown
into action by the will. It is, therefore, necessary to fix both
instants--when the sound is produced and when the observer has, from
its warning, received the impulse so as to press down a key. The great
advantage of this instrument over others adapted for the same end
consists in this, that the determination in its essentials is effected
entirely by mechanism, and, therefore, the graphic results attained by
it are free from all sources of error, which errors other methods
always introduce to a greater or less extent. Thus its results are
quite unexceptionable.

[Illustration: REACTION PERIOD OF HEARING.]

The apparatus shown in the cut rests on three feet, two of them
consisting of strong screws, so that by aid of the circular level,
_l_, on the base plate, it can be adjusted perfectly level. On a
little shelf attached to a square rod, seen on the left of the
instrument, rising from the base plate, and near its top, is a
horizontal tube, through which, by a bulb not shown in the cut, a
blast of air can be blown. In front of the other opening of the tube
is a horizontal fork of ebonite, whose arms carry on the side opposite
the tube a metallic ball. Through the arms of the fork pass the wires
of the circuit of an electric battery. These terminate in two rounded
ends, which, when the arms approach each other, are touched by the
metallic ball, so that the latter also closes the metallic circuit. By
the blast of air a wooden wedge contained in the tube is driven
between the arms of the fork, the ball falls from them, and the
electric stream is cut off. The ball drops upon the inclined metallic
plate, _p_, bounces off it, and is received in a little sack, S. When
the observer hears the ball strike the plate, he presses on the key,
_t_, and the interval between the two instants, namely, the falling of
the ball upon the plate and the pressing of the key, _t_, is what is
to be mechanically fixed and measured.

The electric current, which is closed by the ball as long as it lies
on the jaws of the fork, flows around the arms of the electro-magnet,
_m_, which continually attracts an armature fastened to a lever arm,
and coming over the poles of the magnet. If the circuit is broken by
the fall of the ball, the armature at once rises upward. By this a
spring contained in the tube, _g_, and hitherto kept compressed, is
released, which gives a shock to the right angled frame, _a a_,
containing a blackened or smoked plate of glass, so that, following
the wire, _b_, acting as a guide, the plate flies from left to right
of the apparatus. To prevent the plate from recoiling, a catch, _d_,
is fastened to the side bar, _c_. Furthermore, lest the friction of
the wire, _b_, in the guiding apertures of the frame should impair its
velocity as it moves from left to right, it is connected with a weight
pan by a cord passing over the pulley, _g_, which is so loaded that by
the added velocity with which it strives to fall, the retardation
already alluded to is overcome, so that the frame moves from left to
right with even speed.

In front of the frame, _a a_, is the tuning fork, _f_, which as
estimated makes 184 vibrations in a second. By the stylus, _y_, on the
upper limb of the fork these oscillations are marked upon the sliding
plate of glass as a wave line. Lest, after the first impulses of the
fork have been registered, they should soon die away, in front of it
is an electro-magnet, H, whose pole-faces near the arms of the tuning
fork pass over them. The latter, to be more strongly affected by the
magnet, are provided with faces of soft iron. To the lower face of the
lower arm of the fork a small sharp stylus is fastened, which, with
each beat of the fork, comes into contact with the mercury in the
little cup, _n_, or a spring used instead of it. This closes an
electric circuit, which passes around the magnet, thence going through
the tuning fork by the binding screw, _k_, and thence by connections
not shown in the cut back to the battery. In consequence of the
magnetism thus excited, the arms of the tuning fork are attracted by
the poles of the magnet, and forced to beat with increased amplitude.
In a short time a constant amplitude of oscillation is reached, when
the magnetic impulses are of equal influence with the atmospheric
resistance and the internal force of the tuning fork restraining its
movements.

Finally, the stylus, _s_, which touches the glass plate directly above
_y_, is for registering the moments when by the falling ball the sound
is produced and when the observer presses the key. This is brought
about by the rod, _i_, to which _s_ is firmly screwed, being jerked
upward a short distance at each of these instants, so that the
horizontal lines which the stylus, _s_, marks upon the screen passing
in front of it are broken at both places.

The mechanism which jerks the rod, _i_, upward is thus arranged: The
inclined plate, _p_, on which the ball drops, is carried by the upper
horizontal arm of an angular lever turning on the axis, _x_, and
counterpoised by the balancing weight, _x'_. By the falling ball this
arm is pressed downward, and the lower horizontal arm, _w_, of the
lever is also moved. On a second horizontal axis the lever, _v_,
partly concealed, moves, restricted as to its length of swing by the
screws, _n_. As long as the concealed arm is not moved, _v_ is lightly
pressed by the small spring, _e_, against _w_. The projection, _z_, at
the upper end of _v_ holds the rod, _i_, which the strong spring, _h_,
is continually pressing upward. When the ball falls upon the plate,
_p_, the arm, _w_, presses against the lower end of _v_, the
projection, _z_, sets free the rod, and it springs upward. This
movement is soon arrested, as the projection, _z'_, engages with a
stud situated on the right side of the rod, _i_. This projection is
situated on the vertical arm of an angular lever whose other arm is
the key, _t_. When the observer presses the key, the rod, _i_, again
is jerked upward by the spring, _h_. The screw, _o_, tapped into the
rod, _i_, prevents the rod going higher than necessary, by striking a
plate, which also serves as guide for _i_.

To determine the interval between the falling of the ball and pressing
of the key, one has finally to count the waves inscribed by the tuning
fork, which come under the portion of the line inscribed by _s_, which
is bounded by the two breaks produced by the successive movements of
the rod.

To make the glass plate carried by the frame available for more
observations, which plate can be used as a photographic negative, the
frame, T, is adjustable up and down upon the pillars, N. This frame
carries the tuning fork, mercury cup, _n_, and the electro-magnet, M.
The spring, _s_, can also be moved up and down along the rod, i.--_H.
Heele in Zeitschrift fur Instrumentenkunde._

       *       *       *       *       *



A NEW DISINFECTOR.


The accompanying engravings represent a new disinfecting apparatus
invented by Mr. W.E. Thursfield, M. Inst. C.E., of Victorgasse,
Vienna. The principle on which its action is based is that the
complete destruction of all germs in wearing apparel and bedding,
without any material injury whatever to the latter, is only to be
obtained by subjecting the articles infected, for a period
proportionate to their structural resistance, to a moist heat of at
least 212 deg. Fah. Recent experiences in Berlin have shown that, for
security's sake, a temperature of 220 deg. is better. To insure the
thorough penetration of this temperature in every fiber, a heat of
from 260 deg. to 270 deg. must be maintained in the disinfecting
chamber itself. To obtain this by means of ordinary or superheated
steam involves the employment of boilers working under a pressure of
2½ to 3 atmospheres, of disinfecting chambers capable of resisting an
equal tension, and of skilled labor in attending to the same; in other
words, a large initial outlay and correspondingly heavy working
expenses in fuel and wages.

[Illustration: Fig. I and II THE AERO-STEAM DISINFECTOR.]

The disinfecting apparatus, illustrated in a portable and stationary
form, of the dimensions adopted by the sanitary authorities of Vienna,
Budapest, Prague, Lemberg, Teplitz, etc., and by the Imperial and
Royal Theresianum Institute, and sanctioned for use in barracks,
military hospitals, etc., by the Austrian Ministry of War, and for
ambulance hospitals by the Red Cross, acts by means of a mixture of
steam and hot air in such proportion that the steam, after expending
its mechanical energy in inducting the hot air into the disinfecting
chamber, is, by contact with the clothes or bedding of a lower
temperature, not only condensed, but by condensation completely
neutralizes the risk of injury through any chance excess of hot air.
The boiler being practically open is inexplosive, and requires neither
safety valves nor skilled attendance.

The heat generated in the furnace is utilized to the utmost, and the
escaping vapors form a steam jacket in the double casing of the
disinfecting chamber. The method of manipulation reduces the danger of
contagion to a minimum, as the clothes or bedding are placed in
specially constructed sacks in the sick chamber itself, and, after
being tightly closed, the sacks are removed and hung in the
disinfector. The stationary apparatus, which is constructed to
disinfect four complete suits of clothes, including underlinen, or one
complete set of bedding, including mattress, is specially adapted for
hospitals, barracks, jails, etc. Its dimensions can easily be
increased, but the size shown has proved itself, from an economical
point of view, the best, as, where the quantity of articles to be
disinfected varies, several apparatus can be erected at a less cost
than one large one, and one or more be heated as the quantity of
infected articles be small or large. In the accompanying drawing A is
the boiler, which is filled by pouring water into the reservoir, B,
until the same, entering the boiler at its lowest part through the
tube, C, rises to the desired height in the water gauge, G. C acts
also in the place of a safety valve. D is the fire space, E a movable
grate, and F the coal hopper. The fuel consists of charcoal or coke.
The boiler is emptied by the cock, H. I is a steam pipe connecting the
steam space with the hot air tube, L¹. K is an auxiliary pipe to admit
the steam into the chimney during stoppage for emptying and recharging
the disinfecting chamber in continuous working. The admission of air
is regulated by the handle, L, and the draught in the chimney, M, by
the handle, N. O is the disinfecting chamber inclosed by the space, P,
which acts at the same time as a steam jacket and as a channel for
the downward passage of the vapors escaping from the chamber through
the outlets, S. The lower portion of the disinfecting chamber, Q, is
funnel-shaped for the better mixture and distribution of the steam and
hot air, and to collect any condensation water. Q¹ is a sieve to catch
any fallen article. The vertical tubes, S, which serve at the same
time to strengthen the chamber, connect the lower portion of the steam
jacket, P, with the circular channel, T, which is again connected with
the chimney, M, by the tube, T'. The disinfection chamber is
hermetically closed by the double cover, R, to the lower plate of
which hooks for hanging the sacks are fastened. The cover fits in a
sand bath, and is raised and lowered by means of the pulley chain, W,
and the swinging crane, X. U is a thermometer indicating the
temperature of the steam and hot air in the disinfecting chamber, V a
cock for drawing off any condensation water, Y a battery connected
with an electrical thermometer to be placed in the clothes or bedding,
and Z the sacks in which the infected articles are hung.

The portable apparatus, as shown, for heating with gas, or even
spirits of wine, can also be heated with a similar steam and hot air
apparatus as the stationary disinfector. In country towns or villages,
or even in cities, whose architectural arrangements permit, the
portable disinfector can easily be drawn by one man into the courtyard
or garden of any house, and the process of disinfection conducted on
the spot. Its usefulness in campaigns for ambulance hospitals is
self-evident. The letters denoting the several parts are the same as
in the stationary apparatus. The portable disinfector is constructed
to disinfect two complete suits of clothes or one mattress. The
extremely favorable results are shown in the accompanying table of
trials.--_The Engineer._


TABLE OF RESULTS WITH WM. E. THURSFIELD'S STEAM AND HOT AIR DISINFECTORS.

Part 1. Portable Apparatus.
__________________________________________________________________________________
                                        |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
Series of Trials.                       | I. |II. |III.| IV.| V. | VI. | VII.|VIII.
----------------------------------------+----+----+----+----+----+-----+-----+----
Contents of boiler, in gallons          |3.85|4.18| -  |4.18|4.18| 4.18| 5.7 |5.7
Water added during the process          | -  |1.54| -  | -  | -  |  -  | 1.4 |0.6
Temperature of water      degs. Fah.    | -  | -  | -  | 72 | 57 |  54 |  43 |132
Firing commenced with spirits of        |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
  wine at                     hours min.| -  |2.12|9.10|4.30| -  |10.0 |  -  | -
Firing commenced with gas at       "    |1.30| -  | -  | -  |3.0 |  -  |  -  | -
Firing commenced with coke at      "    | -  | -  | -  | -  | -  |  -  |  -  |1.10
Firing commenced with charcoal at  "    | -  | -  | -  | -  | -  |  -  |10.12|
Steam generated at                 "    | -  |2.34|9.28|4.41|3.15|10.18|10.35|1.34
212 deg. in chamber registered by       |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 external thermometer at           "    |2.30|2.40|9.34| -  | -  |  -  |10.50|1.52
212 deg. in clothes registered by       |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 electrical thermometer at         "    | -  | -  | -  |5.25|4.18|12.12|  -  | -
221 deg. in clothes registered by       |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 electrical thermometer at         "    | -  | -  | -  | -  | -  |  -  |11.51|2.34
Highest temperature in chamber          |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 registered by external thermometer deg.| -  |270 |250 | -  |324 | 255 | 302 |275
Mean temperature in chamber             |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 registered by external thermometer  "  |241 |257 |239 |266 | -  | 253 | 266 |266
Trial closed at          hours, min.    |4.45|4.10|11.4|5.45|4.30|12.30|11.51|2.35
Max. therm. registered in mattress  deg.|262 | -  |  - | -  | -  |  -  |  -  | -
Max. therm. registered in overcoat     "| -  |239 | 226| -  | -  |  -  | 223 |223
Max. therm. registered in winter coat  "| -  | -  |  - |232 |223 | 214 |  -  | -
Max. therm. regis'd in winter trousers "| -  |243 | 239| -  | -  |  -  |  -  | -
Max. therm. regis'd in summer trousers "| -  |246 | 252| -  | -  |  -  |  -  | -
Time required to generate steam min.    | -  | 22 |  18| 11 | 15 |  18 |  23 | 24
Time required to generate 212 deg.      |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 in chamber                       "     | 60 | 28 |  24| -  | -  |  -  |  38 | 42
Time required to generate 212 deg.      |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 in clothes                       "     | -  | -  |  - | 55 | 78 | 132 |  -  | -
Time required to generate 221 deg.      |    |    |    |    |    |     |     |
 in clothes                       "     | -  | -  |  - | -  | -  |  -  |  99 | 85
Total duration of process         "     |135 |118 | 114| 75 | 90 | 150 |  99 | 85
Water evaporated, in gallons            | -  | -  |  - |1.65|1.90| 2.75| 4.3 |3.3
Consumption of spirits of wine pints    | -  | -  |  - |3.0 | -  | 9.6 |  -  | -
Consumption of gas, in cubic feet       | -  | -  |  - | -  | 70 |  -  |  -  | -
Consumption of cokes, in cbs            | -  | -  |  - | -  | -  |  -  |  -  |  6
Consumption of charcoal, in cbs         | -  | -  |  - | -  | -  |  -  | 8.8 | -
----------------------------------------+----+----+----+----+----+-----+-----+----

Part 2. Stationary Apparatus.
__________________________________________________________________________________
                                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |
Series of Trials.                       | IX. |  X. | XI. | XII.|XIII.| XIV.| XV.
----------------------------------------+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----
Contents of boiler, in gallons          |10.0 |10.0 |10.0 |10.0 |10.0 |10.0 |10.0
Water added during the process          | 4.3 |  -  |  -  | 7.4 | 1.4 |  -  |  -
Temperature of water      degs. Fah.    |  54 |  46 | 176 |  43 |  43 |  43 | 104
Firing commenced with spirits of        |     |     |     |     |     |     |
  wine at                    hours min. |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Firing commenced with gas at       "    |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Firing commenced with coke at      "    |  -  | 8.15| 1.13| 1.43| 2.54|  -  |  -
Firing commenced with charcoal at  "    | 2.15|  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  | 8.43|10.16
Steam generated at                 "    | 2.38| 8.53| 1.20| 2.3 | 3.19| 9.3 |10.23
212 deg. in chamber registered by       |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 external thermometer at           "    | 2.45| 9.3 | 1.28| 2.18| 3.37| 9.12|10.31
212 deg. in clothes registered by       |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 electrical thermometer at         "    |  -  |  -  | 1.55|  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
221 deg. in clothes registered by       |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 electrical thermometer at         "    |  -  |  -  |  -  | 3.50| 4.26|10.4 |12.03
Highest temperature in chamber          |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 registered by external thermometer deg.| 293 | 320 | 284 | 284 | 302 | 284 | 275
Mean temperature in chamber             |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 registered by external thermometer   " | 284 | 284 | 266 | 266 | 284 | 266 | 266
Trial closed at           hours, min    | 4.30|11.0 | 2.10| 3.50| 4.35|10.10|12.03
Max. therm. registered in mattress  deg.|  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Max. therm. registered in overcoat     "| 253 | 244 | 226 |  -  |  -  |  -  | 223
Max. therm. registered in winter coat  "|  -  |  -  |  -  | 230 | 232 | 223 |  -
Max. therm. regis'd in winter trousers "| 262 |  -  | 253 |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Max. therm. regis'd in summer trousers  | 280 |  -  | 264 |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Time required to generate steam    min  |  23 |  38 |   7 |  20 |  25 |  20 |   7
Time required to generate 212 deg.      |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 in chamber                         "   |  30 |  48 |  15 |  35 |  43 |  29 |  15
Time required to generate 212 deg.      |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 in clothes                         "   |  -  |  -  |  42 |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Time required to generate 221 deg.      |     |     |     |     |     |     |
 in clothes                         "   |  -  |  -  |  -  | 127 |  92 |  81 | 107
Total duration of process           "   | 135 | 105 |  57 | 127 | 101 |  87 | 107
Water evaporated, in gallons            | 6.93|  -  |  -  | 9.24|  -  | 3.63| 4.84
Consumption of spirits of wine pints    |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Consumption of gas, in cubic feet       |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -
Consumption of cokes, in cbs            |  -  |  -  | 8.8 |16.5 |  -  |  -  |  -
Consumption of charcoal, in cbs         |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |  -  |14.3 |13.8
----------------------------------------+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----

N.B.--In every case, even in the trials V. and X., in which the
temperature in the disinfecting chamber rose above 320 deg. Fah., the
clothes, owing to the complete saturation of the hot air with live
steam, remained absolutely unimpaired.

The column "water evaporated" shows the quantity of live steam passing
through the disinfecting chamber averages 13 cubic feet per minute
with gas or spirits, and 22 cubic feet with charcoal or coke in the
portable and 33 cubic feet in the stationary apparatus. Trials VI.,
VII., and VIII. took place in open air.

According to trial XII., from 28 to 30 complete suits of clothes can
be disinfected at an expenditure of about 75 cbs. of coke per diem.

       *       *       *       *       *



DRAWING INSTRUMENT FOR ACCURATE WORK.

BY J. LEHRKE.


This arrangement consists in a cylindrical metal or horn mounted lens
two to four centimeters long, and magnifying two or three times, and
two or three centimeters in diameter, whose side is provided with a
contrivance for holding after it has been pushed into place a copying
needle, a protractor, etc.

While hitherto the architect in using millimeter paper must hold
separately in his hands a magnifying glass and needle, while the
engraver holds the engraving tool inclined in one hand and the
magnifying glass in the other, or must work under a large lens
standing on three feet, it is now possible by a firm connection
between the lens and needle or other instrument to draw directly with
one hand and under the lens. In the accompanying cut one of these
lenses is shown in section, A, in which the glass is set obliquely, in
whose focus the needle, _a_, is held and the field of view is
enlarged. A longer description is unnecessary, as the illustration
gives the best explanation. It need only be remarked that the stud,
_s_, projecting a little near the glass, is for the purpose of
preventing the instrument from leaving the position coinciding with
the plane of the drawing. For architects and engineers is provided a
small compass, _b_, of about 2 cm. diameter, for laying off parallel
widths, for making smaller scales and the like. In these cases it is
substituted for the needle. In like manner for calculating cross
profiles by graphical methods, for reading parallel divisions, for
estimating areas, or revising maps, a finely divided prismatic ivory
rule, _c_, can be placed under the glass, B, and will do good service.
In this case the plane of the lens must be perpendicular to the axis
of the tube.

[Illustration: IMPROVED DRAWING INSTRUMENT.]

For draughtsmen a parallel drawing pen, something like _b_, is used,
which gives several lines at once, perfectly parallel and close
together; or a drawing pen with which the smallest signatures, such as
boundary stones and figures, can be made neatly and exactly, which is
secured like the needle, _a_, and for which the cylinder serves also
as pen holder, offers a great advance.

Thus a whole series of instruments can be used with the lens. For
instance, a naturalist can use with it a knife or other instrument. To
avoid injury from the instruments, one should, in laying down the
cylinder, place it on its side. It is also recommended that on the
outer tube of the frame, which is appropriately lacquered of black
color, white arrows should be placed in the direction of the points of
the instrument, so that the eyes shall be protected from injury in
handling the instrument, as by the points being stuck into the pupil,
owing to lifting the instrument in an inverted position.--_Zeitschrift
fur Instrumentenkunde._

       *       *       *       *       *



BARLOW'S MACHINE FOR MOULDING CANDLES.


That style of machine for moulding candles in which the candles are
forced out at the top by means of a piston is the one most employed,
and it is an apparatus of this kind that we illustrate herewith. In
its construction, this apparatus presents some important improvements
in detail which it is of interest to set forth. The improvements made
by the Messrs. Barlow have been studied with a view of manufacturing
candles with conical ends, adapted to all chandeliers, without
interfering with rapidity of production or increasing the net cost.

These gentlemen have likewise so simplified the continuous system of
drawing the wick along as to prevent any loss of cotton. In the next
place, the structure of the moulds, properly so called, is new.
Instead of being cast, as is usually the case, they are rolled and
drawn out, thus giving them smooth surfaces and permitting of their
being soldered, are assembled by means of threaded bronze sockets. The
engravings between Figs. 3 and 4 show these two modes of fixation. At
_a_ may be seen the old method of junction by soldering, and at _b_
the screwing of the moulds into the socket. This machine consists of a
box which is alternately heated and cooled, and which is fixed upon a
frame, A, at the lower part of which are located the wick bobbins, E.
Toward the top of the machine there is a mechanism for actuating the
two pairs of jaws, B, which grasp the candles forced upward by the
play of the pistons, D. This mechanism, which is controlled by a
lever, acts by means of an eccentric.

[Illustration: Figs. 1 and 2. BARLOW'S CANDLE MOULDING MACHINE.]

The pistons, D, are hollow, and are provided above with pieces which
form the small end of the candles. Instead of using tin, as is usually
done, the Messrs. Barlow employ galvanized iron in the construction of
these pistons, and mount them through screw rings--no soldering being
used. For this reason, any workman whatever can quickly replace one of
the tubes. All the pistons are placed upon a horizontal table, which
is made to rise and descend at will, in order to regulate the length
of the candles and remove them from the mould. A winch transmits the
motion which is communicated to it to two pairs of pinions that gear
with racks fixed to the frame to lift the table that supports the
pistons. How these latter are mounted may be seen from an inspection
of Figs. 3 to 5. This new arrangement of spiral springs for the
purpose is designed to hold the pistons on the table firmly, and at
the same time to prevent the shock that their upper ends might undergo
in case of an abrupt turn of the winch. Moreover, the forged iron
plate, H, is not exposed to breakage as it is in other machines, where
it is of cast iron. The bobbins already mentioned revolve upon strong
iron rods, and the moving forward of the wick in the moulds is
effected automatically by the very fact of the manufactured candles'
being forced out. These latter are held in position through the double
play of the jaws, B, while the stearic acid is flowing into the upper
part of the moulds. The cotton wick is thus drawn along and kept in
the axis of the candles.

[Illustration: Figs. 3, 4, 5. BARLOW'S CANDLE MOULDING MACHINE.]

One peculiarity of the machine consists in the waste system applied to
the mould box. Steam or hot or cold water is sent into the latter
through the conduit, L, starting from a junction between pipes
provided with cocks. When the water contained in the box is in excess,
it flows out through the waste pipes, G, which terminate in a single
conduit. Owing to the branchings at T, and to the cocks of the
conduits that converge at L, it is very easy to vary the temperature
of the box at will. The warm or cold water or steam may be admitted or
shut off simultaneously.

When first beginning operations, the wick is introduced into each
mould by hand. The piston table is raised by means of the winch, and
is held in this position through the engaging of a click with a
ratchet on the windlass. A fine iron rod long enough to reach beneath
the pistons and catch the end of the wick is next introduced. After
this is removed, the wick is fixed once for all, and in any way
whatever, to the top of the mould. This operation having been
accomplished, the piston table is lowered, and the machine is ready to
receive the stearic acid. The moulds are of tin and are open at both
ends. In order to facilitate the removal of the candles, they are made
slightly conical. When the candles have hardened, the ends are
equalized with a wooden or tin spatula, and then the piston table is
raised. At this instant, the jaws, B, are closed so as to hold the
candles in place. The latter, in rising, pull into the mould a new
length of wick, well centered. A slight downward tension is exerted
upon the wick by hand, then a new operation is begun. During this
time, the candles held between the jaws having become hard, their
wicks are now cut by means of the levers, C, and they are removed from
the machine and submitted to a finishing process.--_Revue
Industrielle._

       *       *       *       *       *



A NEW ALKALI PROCESS.


In several former notes and articles in these pages, we have spoken of
the severe crisis through which the old established, or "Leblanc,"
process has now for some years been passing. It is, in fact, pushed
well nigh out of the running by the newer process, known as the
"ammonia-soda" process, and would have had to give up the battle
before now were it not for the fact that one of its by-products,
bleaching powder, cannot, so far, be produced at all by the
ammonia-soda works. The bleaching powder trade has thus remained in
the hands of the workers of the Leblanc process, and its sale has
enabled them to cover much of the loss which they are suffering on the
manufacture of soda ash and caustic soda.

In brief outline, the old Leblanc process consists in the following
operations: Salt is decomposed and boiled down with sulphuric acid.
Sulphate of sodium is formed, and a large amount of hydrochloric acid
is given off. This is condensed, and is utilized in the manufacture of
the bleaching powder mentioned above. The sulphate of sodium, known as
"salt cake," is mixed with certain proportions of small coal and
limestone, and subjected to a further treatment in a furnace, by which
a set of reactions take place, causing the conversion of the sulphate
of sodium of the "salt cake" into carbonate of sodium, a quantity of
sulphide of calcium being produced at the same time. The mass
resulting from this process is known as "black ash." It is extracted
with water, which dissolves out the carbonate of sodium, which is sold
as such or worked into "caustic" soda, as may be required. The
insoluble residue is the "alkali waste," which forms the vast piles,
so hideous to look at and so dreadful to smell, which surround our
large alkali works.

The sulphuric acid required for the conversion of the salt into "salt
cake" is made by the alkali manufacturer himself, this manufacture
necessitating a large plant of "lead chambers" and accessories, and
keeping up an immense trade in pyrites from Spain and Portugal. The
development of the alkali trade in this country has been something
colossal, and the interests involved in it and connected with it are
so great that anything affecting it may safely be said to be of truly
national importance, quite apart from what technical interest it may
possess.

The "ammonia-soda" process, which has played such havoc with the old
style of manufacture, proceeds on totally different lines. Briefly
stated, it depends on the fact that if a solution of salt in water is
mixed with bicarbonate of ammonium, under proper conditions, a
reaction takes place by which the salt, or chloride of sodium, is
converted at once into bicarbonate of sodium, the bicarbonate of
ammonium being at the same time converted into chloride of ammonium.

The bicarbonate of sodium settles out at once as insoluble crystals,
easily removed, marketable at once as such, or easily converted into
simple carbonate of sodium, and further into caustic soda, as in the
ordinary "old" process. The residual chloride of ammonium is
decomposed by distillation with lime, giving ammonia for reconversion
into bicarbonate of ammonium, and chloride of calcium, which is a
waste product.

The maker of "ammonia" soda works direct on the brine, as pumped from
the salt fields. His plant is simpler and less costly, and he arrives
at his first marketable product much more rapidly and with very much
lower working costs than the maker of Leblanc soda, in spite of all
the great mechanical improvements which have of late years been
introduced into the old process, and which have cheapened its work.

The original patents on the use of ammonium bicarbonate have, we
understand, long since expired. But the working details of the process
and much of the most successful apparatus have undergone great
development and improvement during late years, all the important
points being covered by patents still in force, and mainly, if not
wholly, in the hands of the one large firm which is now carrying on
the manufacture in this country, and is controlling the market.

The one weak spot of the ammonia-soda process, as we mentioned before,
is its inability to supply hydrochloric acid or chlorine, and so allow
of making bleaching powder. Time after time it has been announced
positively that the problem was solved, that the ammonia-soda makers
had devised a method of producing hydrochloric acid or chlorine, or
both, without the use of sulphuric acid. But the announcements have so
far proved baseless, and at present the Leblanc makers are getting
incredulous, and do not much excite themselves over new statements of
the kind, though they know that if once their rivals had this weapon
in their hands the battle would be over and the Leblanc process doomed
to rapid extinction.

Such is at present the state of the struggle in this great industry,
and the above outline sketch of the two processes is designed to give
some idea of the conditions to such of our readers as may not have any
special knowledge of these manufactures.

At the present moment great interest is being taken in a new process,
about to be put to work on a large scale, which is designed to take up
the cudgels against the ammonia process and enable the Leblanc makers
to continue the fight on something more like equal terms.

We allude to the process proposed and patented by Messrs. Parnell &
Simpson, and about to be worked by the "Lancashire Alkali and Sulphur
Company," at Widnes. We recently had the opportunity of inspecting
fully the plant erected, and of having the method of procedure
explained to us. We look upon the new process as such a spirited
attempt to turn the tide of a long and losing battle, and as so very
interesting on its own merits, that an account of it in these pages
will be thoroughly in place.

The main idea of the process is to combine the "Leblanc" and the
"ammonia-soda" manufacture. But in place of using caustic lime to
decompose the ammonium chloride and get back the ammonia, the "alkali
waste" spoken of above is employed, it being found that not only is
the ammonia driven off, but that also the sulphur in the "waste" is
obtained in a form allowing of its easy utilization, it and the
ammonia combining to form ammonium sulphide, which passes over in
gaseous form from the decomposing apparatus. This ammonium sulphide
is, as we shall see, quite as available for the working of the
ammonia-soda manufacture as pure and simple ammonia, and all the
sulphur can be obtained from it.

In outline the process is as follows: We will suppose that a quantity
of bicarbonate of sodium has been just precipitated from a brine
solution, and we have the residual ammonium chloride to deal with.
This is decomposed by "alkali waste," giving a final liquor of calcium
chloride, which is run to waste, and a quantity of ammonium sulphide
gas. This latter is led at once into a solution of salt in water, till
saturation takes place. Into this liquor of brine and ammonium
sulphide _pure_ carbonic acid gas is now passed. The ammonium sulphide
is decomposed, pure sulphureted hydrogen gas is given off, which is
conducted to a gas holder and stored, while ammonium bicarbonate is
formed in the liquor, which brings about the conversion of the salt
into bicarbonate of sodium, ready for removal and preparation for the
market.

It will be observed that we printed the word _pure_ in italics in
speaking of the carbonic acid used. This is one of the great points in
the process, as in order that the sulphureted hydrogen gas obtained
shall be concentrated and pure, only pure carbonic acid can be used in
liberating it. The apparatus employed in its preparation is perhaps
the most ingenious part of the works, and well worthy of attention by
others besides alkali makers. The method is based on the fact that if
dilute impure carbonic acid is passed into a solution of carbonate of
sodium, the carbonic acid is absorbed, bicarbonate of sodium being
formed, and the diluting gases passing away.

The bicarbonate of sodium on heating gives up the extra carbonic acid,
which can be collected and stored pure, while the liquor passes back
to simple carbonate of sodium, to be used over again as an absorbent.
This is not at all new in theory, of course, nor is this the first
proposal to use it commercially; but it is claimed that this is the
first successful working of it on a large scale.

The gases from a large limekiln supply the dilute carbonic acid gas,
which contains 25 per cent. to 30 per cent. of pure gas, the principal
diluting gas being, of course, nitrogen. This kiln gas is drawn from
the kiln by a blowing engine, and is first cooled in two large
receivers. It is then forced into the solution of sodium carbonate in
the absorption tower, 65 ft. high by 6 ft. diameter, filled with the
liquor. The tower has many diaphragms and perforated "mushrooms," to
cause a proper dispersion of the gases as they ascend through the
liquor. The strength of liquor found best adapted for the work is
equal to a density of about 30° Twaddell. After saturation the mud of
bicarbonate of sodium is drawn off and passed into the "decomposer," a
tower 35 ft. high by 6 ft. 6 in. in diameter, with perforated shelves,
into which steam is blown from below, the liquor passing downward. The
bicarbonate is decomposed, pure carbonic acid being given off. This is
passed through a scrubber and into a gas holder ready for use. The
liquor, which has now returned to the state of simple carbonate of
sodium, only requires cooling to be ready to absorb a fresh lot of
carbonic acid gas. The cooling is effected in a tower packed loosely
with bricks, the hot liquor trickling down against a powerful current
of air blown in from below. Liquor has been cooled in this way, in
once passing through the tower, from 220° Fahr. to 58° Fahr., but of
course the exact cooling obtained depends more or less on the
temperature of the atmosphere.

The next stage of the process, if we follow on after the preparation
of the pure carbonic acid, is the employment of the gas for the
decomposition of the ammonium sulphide absorbed in a brine liquor as
above explained. The brine and ammonium sulphide are contained in what
is known as a "Solvay tower," provided with proper means for
dispersion and absorption of the carbonic acid gas. The precipitated
bicarbonate of sodium is removed and washed, and prepared for the
market in whatever form is required, the sulphureted hydrogen gas
being led to a holder and stored, as before stated.

The decomposition of the ammonium chloride by means of "alkali waste"
is carried out in a specially designed still. This is a tower 45 ft.
high by 8 ft. diameter, divided by horizontal plates into compartments
of about 3 ft. 8 in. in height. These compartments communicate with
one another by means of pockets, or recesses, in the shell of the
tower. A vertical shaft, with arms, revolves in the tower. The "waste"
is fed in at the top by means of hopper and screw feed. The liquor is
heated by steam blown in to over 212° Fahr. The ammonium sulphide is
led direct into an absorbing vessel full of brine.

It now only remains to see how it is proposed to deal with the
sulphureted hydrogen gas which represents the sulphur recovered from
the waste. It can be burnt direct to sulphurous acid and utilized for
the production of vitriol perfectly pure and free from arsenic,
commanding a special price. But Messrs. Parnell & Simpson state that
by a method of restricted combustion they are able to obtain nearly
all the sulphur as such, and put it on the market on equal terms with
the best Sicilian sulphur. We did not gather that this has yet been
done on the working scale, however.

It will be seen that it is proposed that a Leblanc alkali maker shall
continue to produce a portion of his make by the old process, but
shall erect plant to enable him to make another portion by the Parnell
& Simpson method, using his Leblanc "waste" in place of the caustic
lime now employed by the ammonia soda people. He is thus to have the
benefit of the cheaper process for, say, half his make, while he
further cheapens the ammonia method by saving the cost of lime and by
recovering the sulphur otherwise lost in his waste.

The saving in lime is stated to be one ton for each ton of sodium
carbonate produced, or in cash value about 10s. per ton at Widnes,
while the sulphur saved is estimated to be 6 cwt. per ton of sodium
carbonate. We reproduce these figures with all reserve, not being
ourselves sufficiently specialists to judge of them. But we were
assured that they represent the minimum expected, and reasons were
given to us to show that they would probably be exceeded.

Another gain for the Leblanc maker would be that he will escape the
cost of removal and disposal of a portion of his refuse or waste.

The plant now erected was calculated for a yield of one hundred tons
carbonate of sodium and about thirty-five tons of sulphur per week,
but it now appears likely that this will be exceeded; while the
carbonic acid plant was supposed to be equal to a yield of 6 tons of
pure gas per day, and is now found capable of doing twice as much.

A few weeks will now bring this new combination process into the
active and crucial test of the markets. Chemists and chemical
engineers have all along taken a keen interest in the ingenious ideas
of Parnell & Simpson. Commercial men are no less interested in the
financial result of the experiment about to be tried at the expense of
a few gentlemen of Liverpool and district. So far as we can learn,
opinions are to some extent divided, though many good judges are very
hopefully inclined. For our own part, speaking with diffidence, as
being a little off our regular track of work, we will only say that we
were favorably impressed with what we saw and heard; and we certainly
wish the venture that full success which its cleverness and its pluck,
as well as its great importance at this crisis, deserve for
it.--_Engineering_.

       *       *       *       *       *



TEMPERATURE OF GAS DISTILLATION.


An important subject for investigation, which has not yet been
satisfactorily determined, is the temperature at which it is most
beneficial to distill coals of various qualities. The practice of
allowing the charge to remain in the retort for some time after most
of the gas has been driven off, to enable (it is said) the retort to
recover heat for the next charge, often leads to misconception as to
the true temperature of carbonization. The effect of this is to
equalize the temperatures inside and outside the retort. This inside
temperature is not maintained, the temperature outside not being high
enough to transmit the heat with sufficient rapidity; and so, in an
apparently hot retort, the coal may be carbonized at a comparatively
low temperature. A truer test of temperature is that of the outside of
the retort, which should be not less than 400° to 500° Fahr. above the
temperature necessary for proper carbonization. In all experiments
relating to temperature pretending to any degree of accuracy, a
pyrometer of some kind should be used. Judging of the temperature by
the color is often misleading. Not only may the eye be deceived, but
different clays do not present the same appearance at the same
temperature. A good, reliable pyrometer to estimate temperatures to
(say) 2500° Fahr. is much wanted.

Experience during the last few years with the high temperatures
obtained by the use of regenerative furnaces has led me to the
conclusion that higher heats than are usual may be employed with
advantage, as regards both the quantity and the quality of gas,
provided the retorts are heated uniformly throughout their length, and
the weight and duration of the charge are so adjusted that the coal
does not remain longer in the retort than is just sufficient to drive
off the gas; and that the more rapidly the coal is carbonized, the
better are the results. In two retorts of the same size, one making
5,000 and the other 10,000 cubic feet per day, the gas will be twice
as long in contact with the surface of the retort in the former as in
the latter--to the probable detriment of its quality, and increased
tendency to stoppage in the ascension pipes.

A subject closely allied to that just alluded to is the temperature of
the gas as it leaves the retort. Until within the last few years, it
was generally assumed that this was not higher than from 200° to 300°
Fahr.; and a very plausible theory was given to account for such a
comparatively low temperature. A discussion which took place a few
years ago in the _Journal of Gas Lighting_ showed that at that time
opinions on this subject were not unanimous. But the conclusion
arrived at seemed to be that the gas was not higher in temperature
than that before stated; and if higher temperatures were observed,
they were due to the tarry matter in the gas, and were not those of
the gas itself. A little reflection is sufficient to show that the
existence of gas intimately mixed with tarry matter at a high
temperature, without being itself raised to that temperature, is a
physical impossibility.

In a paper read to a Continental gas association about a year ago, the
writer stated, as the result of many experiments, that unless the
temperature in the ascension pipe rises above 480° Fahr., thickening
of the tar in the hydraulic main and choking of the ascension pipe
will certainly occur. This led me to make a series of experiments,
extending over many months, on the temperature of the gas in the
ascension pipes at different points and at various times during the
charge. The results of these experiments may be of some interest, and
may lead to further investigation. The temperatures were taken by
mercurial thermometers registering 600° Fahr., except those near the
mouthpiece, which were taken by a Siemens water pyrometer. Every care
was exercised to insure accuracy; and the instruments were carefully
adjusted. At a distance of 18 inches from the mouthpiece, the
temperatures varied from an average of 890°, shortly after the retort
was charged, to 518° at the end of the charge; at 12 feet distant from
the mouthpiece, the corresponding temperature was 444°, falling to
167° at the end of the charge; and at 22 feet, the average temperature
varied from 246° at the commencement to 144° at the end of the charge.
These are the averages of a number of experiments. In some instances
they were considerably above these averages--temperatures over 900°
being frequently obtained. This is about the temperature of a low red
heat, and is much higher than any I have seen recorded. When the gas
was allowed to issue from a hole in the ascension pipe, 1¼ inches in
diameter, 18 inches above the mouthpiece, a strip of lead held about
an inch from the orifice was freely melted.

In the settings on which these experiments were made, the middle
ascension pipe takes the gas from the two central retorts; and it is
of interest to note that in this pipe the temperature of the gas 18
inches from the upper retort was found to be 1014° Fahr., and at the
point where it entered the hydraulic main it was 440° Fahr. Zinc was
freely melted by the gas issuing from a hole 18 inches from the
mouthpiece. The temperatures always fall toward the end of the charge;
the fall of temperature in the ascension pipe being a good indication
that the charge is worked off. They increase with the heat of the
retort and with the weight of the charge.

Experiments were also made to ascertain the temperature of the gas in
the retort; and for this purpose one of Murrie's pyrometers was used,
the action of which depends on the pressure produced by the
vaporization of mercury in a malleable iron tube. The end of this tube
was first rested on the top of the coal, but not in contact with the
retort. It reached about 18 inches into the retort, and therefore was
not in the hottest part. In this position the temperature indicated
shortly after charging the retort was 1110° Fahr., gradually rising to
1640° Fahr. The end of the tube was then embedded in the coal, when
the pyrometer indicated a temperature of 1260° Fahr. within 30 minutes
after the retort was charged; gradually rising toward the end of the
charge as before. At the time these temperatures were taken, the
retorts were each producing 10,000 cubic feet of gas per day. I had no
opportunity of testing the accuracy of the statement that, with lower
temperatures, there is a tendency to stoppage of the ascension pipes;
but with these high temperatures (contrary to what might be expected)
there is no trouble from stoppages.

These experiments, so far as they have gone, lead to the conclusion
that the temperature of the gas as it is evolved from the coal is not
less than 1200° Fahr., and that cooling commences immediately on the
gas leaving the retort. The temperatures being far above that of
liquefaction, the gases are cooled very rapidly. The temperature of
the gas in the ascension pipe depends on the rapidity with which the
gas is evolved--that is to say, the greater the quantity produced in a
given time, the less effective is the cooling action of the mouthpiece
and the ascension pipe; and although I had no opportunity of testing
it, I should expect to find that with retorts making from 5,000 to
6,000 cubic feet of gas per day, the maximum temperature in the
ascension pipe 18 inches from the mouthpiece will not exceed 400° to
500° Fahr., while with lower heats and lighter charges the
temperatures will be still lower. That these temperatures have some
effect in causing or preventing stoppage in the ascension pipes there
can be no doubt; and it is important that this subject should be
thoroughly investigated.

It is of interest to consider what must be the physical condition of
the gas at these high temperatures. All the hydrocarbons which are
afterward condensed must then be in the condition of gases having
various degrees of condensability, mixed with and rendered visible by
a cloud of carbon particles or soot. If this soot could be removed
from the gas at this stage without reducing the temperature, we should
probably have no thick tar or pitch, but only comparatively
light-colored oils; and it might possibly lead to an entirely
different mode of conducting the process of condensation.

These are a few of the subjects on which it is extremely desirable
that we should possess that complete information which can only be
obtained by well-directed investigations with different materials and
under varying conditions. There are many others in connection with
carbonization and purification which might be mentioned; but I think I
have said sufficient to show the necessity that exists for more minute
investigation and research. Investigations such as are here indicated
do not involve any large expenditure of money; but they do require
care and intelligence to prevent errors being made. Experiments should
not be condemned as defective because the results differ from
old-established theories; yet when this does happen, it is in all
cases better to suspect the new experiment rather than the old theory,
until the results have been fully established.--_Wm. Foulis, Journal
of Gas Lighting._

       *       *       *       *       *


THE LARGEST BLACK ASH FURNACE IN THE WORLD.

The Widnes Alkali Company have recently erected an enormous revolving
black ash furnace, which is 30 ft. in length and has a diameter of 12
ft. 6 in. The inside length is 28 ft. 6 in., with a diameter of 11 ft.
4 in. The furnace is lined with 16,000 fire bricks and 120 fire-clay
breakers, each weighing 1¼ cwt. The weight of salt cake per charge,
i.e., contained in each charge of salt cake, limestone, mud, and
slack, is 8 tons 12 cwt. For 110 tons of salt cake charged there are
also used about 100 tons of lime mud and limestone and 55 tons of
mixing slack. The total amount of salt cake decomposed weekly is about
400 tons, which may be calculated to yield 240 tons of 60 per cent
caustic soda. There is claimed for this massive furnace an economy in
iron plate, in expense on the engine power and on fuel consumed, as
well as on wear and tear.--_Watson Smith, in Industries._

       *       *       *       *       *



THE STATUE OF PHILIP LEBON.


The inauguration of the statue of Philip Lebon, the inventor of
lighting by gas, occurred on the 26th of June, at Chaumont, under the
auspices of the Technical Gas Society of France. The statue, which we
illustrate herewith, is due to the practiced chisel of the young
sculptor Antide Pechine, who has perfectly understood his work, and
has represented the inventor at the moment at which he observes a
flame start from a glass balloon in which he had heated some sawdust.
The attitude is graceful and the expression of the face is meditative
and intelligent. The statue, which is ten feet in height, was
exhibited at the last _Salon_. It was cast at the Barbedienne works.

It would be impossible to applaud too much the homage that has just
been rendered to the inventor of gas lighting, for Philip Lebon, like
so many other benefactors of humanity, has not by far the celebrity
that ought to belong to him. When we study the documents that relate
to his existence, when we follow the flashes of genius that darted
through his brain, when we see the obstacles that he had to conquer,
and when we thoroughly examine his great character and the lofty
sentiments that animated him, we are seized with admiration for the
humble worker who endowed his country with so great a benefit.

Lebon was born at Brachay on the 29th of May, 1767. At the age of
twenty, he was admitted to the School of Bridges and Roads, where he
soon distinguished himself by his ingenious and investigating turn of
mind. His first labors were in connection with the steam engine, then
in its infancy, and on April 18, 1792, the young engineer obtained a
national award of $400 to continue the experiments that he had begun
on the improvement of this apparatus.

It was at about the same epoch that Lebon was put upon the track of
lighting by gas, during a sojourn at Brachay. He one day threw a
handful of sawdust into a glass vial that he heated over a fire. He
observed issuing from the bottle a dense smoke which suddenly caught
fire and produced a beautiful luminous flame. The inventor understood
the importance of the experiment that he had just performed, and
resolved to work it further. He had just found that wood and other
combustibles were, under the action of heat, capable of disengaging a
gas fit for lighting and heating. He had seen that the gas which is
disengaged from wood is accompanied with blackish vapors of an acrid
and empyreumatic odor. In order that it might serve for the production
of light, it was necessary to free it from these foreign products.

Lebon passed the vapor through a tube into a flask of water, which
condensed the tarry and acid substances, and the gas escaped in a
state of purity. This modest apparatus was the first image of the gas
works; and it comprised the three essential parts thereof--the
generating apparatus, the purifying apparatus, and the receiver for
collecting the gas.

One year afterward, the inventor had seen Fourcroy, Prony, and the
great scientists of his epoch. On the 28th of September, 1799, he took
out a patent in which he gives a complete description of his thermo
lamp, by means of which he produced a luminous gas, while at the same
time manufacturing wood tar and pyroligneous or acetic acid. In this
patent he mentions coal as proper to replace wood, and he explains his
system with a visible emotion and singular ardor. In reading what he
has written we are struck with that form of persuasion that does not
permit of doubting that he foresaw the future in reserve for his
system.

Unfortunately, Lebon could not devote all his time to his discovery.
Being a government engineer, without money and fortune, he had to
attend to his duties. He went as an ordinary engineer to Angouleme,
but he did not forget his illuminating gas, and he strongly regretted
Paris, which he termed "an incomparable focus of study." He devoted
himself to mathematics and science, he made himself beloved by all,
and his mind wandered far from his daily occupation. The engineer in
chief soon complained of him, but a committee appointed to investigate
the charges that had been made against him affirmed that he was free
from any reproach. He was sent back to his post, but war was
decimating the resources of France, and the republic, while Bonaparte
was in Italy, no longer had any time to pay its engineers. Lebon wrote
some pressing letters to the minister, asking for the sums due on his
work, but all of them remained without reply. His wife went to Paris,
but her applications were fruitless. She wrote herself to the minister
the following letter, which exists in the archives of the School of
Bridges and Roads:

    "Liberty, equality, fraternity--Paris. 22 Messidor, year VII. of
    the French Republic, one and indivisible--the wife of Citizen
    Lebon to Citizen Minister of the Interior:

    "It is neither alms nor a favor that I ask of you, it is
    justice. I have for two months been languishing at 120 leagues
    from my household. Do not, by further delay, force the father of
    a family, for want of means, to leave a state for which he has
    sacrificed everything. ... Have regard for our position,
    citizen. It is oppressive, and my demand is just. There is more
    than one motive to persuade me that my application will not be
    fruitless with a minister who makes it a law and duty for
    himself to be just.

    "Greeting and esteem. Your devoted fellow-citizen,

                                "Madame Lebon, _nee_ De Brambille."

In 1801, Lebon was called to Paris, as _attache_ in the service of
Blin, engineer in chief of pavements. He took a second patent--a true
scientific memoir full of facts and ideas. It speaks of the numerous
applications of illuminating gas and its mode of production, lays down
the basis of the entire manufacture--furnaces, condensers, purifiers,
gas burners. Nothing is forgotten, not even the steam engine and
balloon. Lebon proposed to the government to construct an apparatus
for heating and lighting the public buildings, but the offer was
rejected. It was then that the unfortunate inventor, wearied by all
his tentatives, fatigued by his thousands of vexations, made up his
mind to have recourse to the public in order to convince it of the
utility of his invention. He rented the hotel Seignelay, St.
Dominique-St. Germain St., and invited the public thither. Here he
arranged a gas apparatus, which distributed light and heat to all the
rooms. He lighted the gardens with thousands of gas jets in the form
of rosettes and flowers. A fountain was illuminated with the new gas,
and the water that flowed from it seemed to be luminous. The crowd
hastened from all parts and came to salute the new invention. Lebon,
excited by this success, published a prospectus, a sort of profession
of faith, a model of grandeur and sincerity, a true monument of
astonishing foresight. He followed his gas into the future and saw it
circulating through pipes, whence it threw light into all the streets
of future capitals. We reproduce a few passages from this remarkable
production:

"It is painful," says he, "and I experience the fact at this moment,
to have extraordinary effects to announce. Those who have not seen cry
out against the possibility, and those who have seen often judge of
the facility of a discovery by what they have to conceive of its
demonstration. If the difficulty is conquered, the merit of the
inventor vanishes with it. I would rather destroy every idea of merit
than allow the slightest appearance of mystery or charlatanism to
exist.

"This aeriform principle is freed from those humid vapors that are so
injurious and disagreeable to the organs of sight and smell, and of
the soot which soils apartments. Purified to perfect transparency, it
travels in the state of cold air, and is led by the smallest as well
as frailest pipes, by conduits an inch square, formed in the plaster
of ceilings or walls, and even tubes of gummed taffety would perfectly
answer the purpose. Only the extremity of the tube, which puts the
inflammable gas in contact with the air, and upon which the flame
rests, should be of metal."

[Illustration: STATUE OF PHILIP LEBON.]

Every one finally paid homage to the illustrious inventor, and a
committee appointed in the name of the minister affirmed that "the
advantageous results given by the experiments of Citizen Lebon have
met and even exceeded the hopes of the friends of the sciences and
arts." Napoleon I. soon granted Lebon a concession in the forest of
Rouvray for the organization of an industry of wood distillation and
gas making. Unfortunately, Lebon was obliged to undertake too many
things at once. He prepared the gas, and produced acetic acid and tar
that he had to send to Harve for the use of the navy. Despite all his
trouble and fatigue, he had something like a ray of hope. He believed
that he saw the day of fortune dawning. His works were visited by
numerous scientists, and among others the Russian princes Galitzin and
Dolgorouki, who, in the name of their government, proposed to the
inventor to transfer his plant to Russia, he to be free to set forth
the conditions. Lebon refused this splendid offer, and, in an outburst
of patriotism, answered that his discovery belonged to his country,
and that no other nation should before his own have the benefit of his
labors.

The hopes of Lebon were of short duration. Enemies and competitors
caused him a thousand troubles, and the elements themselves seemed to
turn against him. During a hurricane, the humble house in which he
dwelt was destroyed, and a fire shortly afterward consumed a portion
of his works. Fatality, like the genius of old, seemed to be following
up the unfortunate inventor; but sorrows and reverses could not have
any hold on this invincible spirit, who was so well seconded by a wife
of lofty character. Lebon, always at work, was seemingly about to
triumph over all obstacles, and the hour of the realization of his
project of lighting on a large scale was near, when a death as tragic
as it was mysterious snatched him from his labors. On the very day of
the crowning of the emperor, December 2, 1804, the body of Philip
Lebon was found lying inert and lifeless in the Champs Elysees,
exhibiting thirteen deep wounds made by a dagger.--_La Nature._

       *       *       *       *       *



A NEW PROCESS FOR THE DISTILLATION AND CONCENTRATION OF CHEMICAL
LIQUIDS.

ESPECIALLY ADAPTED TO THE MANUFACTURE OF SULPHATE OF AMMONIA.
INVENTOR, ALEX. ANGUS CROLL.[1].

   [Footnote 1: Read at the recent meeting of the Gas Institute,
   Glasgow.]

BY GEORGE ANDERSON, OF LONDON.


The paper I have to lay before you describes the last product of the
brain of one of your past presidents--Alexander Angus Croll--in
connection with our industry. It may not be so well known to some of
the younger as it is to many of the older members of the Institute
that the fertile brain of Mr. Croll has done much for the improvement
and the extension of the gas industry. I consider that he has been the
most successful pioneer both in the cheapening and the purification of
gas--two elements without which our industry would progress but slowly
if at all; and the success which has crowned his efforts, to our
advantage, has reflected itself favorably on himself, showing by his
financial success that he has also been a good man of business. All
these are conditions which enhance the value of this paper. In the
present instance, I claim no other credit than that of being the
mouthpiece of Mr. Croll, whose assistant I was for ten of the busiest
and most important years of his eventful life; and having (with my son
Bruce) taken part in the experiments, I have been asked to describe
the process to the Institute.

The manufacture of sulphate of ammonia, as hitherto conducted, has
consisted either in bringing together sulphuric acid and ammoniacal
liquor or in distilling the liquor by external heat, or by the
introduction of steam, and bringing it into contact with the acid in
the form of gases and vapor of water. In either case a large volume of
noxious gases is given off, the chief of which, being sulphureted
hydrogen, has to be fixed by another method, in order to comply with
acts of Parliament for the prevention of nuisances.

By the processes hitherto used, we sometimes get only 1¼ tons of salts
to every ton of acid used; while in the more perfect forms of
apparatus, we may get 1-1/3 tons of salts. By Mr. Croll's process,
however, we get an increased yield of salts on the acid used, as
follows: The experiments were made with sulphuric acid of the specific
gravity of 1838, or nearly concentrated oil of vitriol; and the
quantity used was 8 ounces in each experiment. The ammoniacal liquor
was of uniform strength throughout all the experiments, being kept in
a corked jar; and the solution of sulphate of ammonia was passed
through filter paper before being crystallized. Thus we obtained a
white salt. In each experiment the solution of sulphate was divided
into four equal parts by weight, and one part filtered and
crystallized to dryness over a spirit lamp; the weight in each
experiment being as nearly as possible the same, or 3¼ oz. of salt to
2 oz. of acid--being in the proportion of 26 oz. of sulphate to 1 lb.
of acid, or 32½ cwt. of salts to 20 cwt. of acid.

The results surprised me; and being uniform over a number of
experiments, pleased me. Still, I preserved the character of a critic
and said: "I should like to treat 8 oz. of acid in the ordinary
way--saturating it with ammoniacal liquor, and then crystallizing it."
"Oh!" Mr. Croll said, "we know what that will produce." I replied:
"Yes; but I would like to do it with the precise acid and liquor we
have been using, so that we may have the experiment on all fours with
yours, barring your process." These experiments were made at his
country residence. I was staying there for the night. So next morning
I got down before him, went at my experiment, saturated 8 oz. of acid
(and a nice smell I made) out in the grounds, treated it afterward by
division into four parts, filtered and crystallized it, all as before,
with the result that I obtained 2¾ oz., as against his 3½ oz.--or in
the proportion of 27½ cwt. of salt to the ton of acid, as against his
32½ cwt.

I now thought of business. "What is the royalty to be?" I said, as we
sat at breakfast. This we settled as we Scotch say "in a crack," or as
an Englishman would say "in a jiffy." Mr. Croll decided to have the
apparatus put up on a manufacturing scale here in Glasgow; and I
determined to erect similar apparatus at one of my gas works.

I dare say that it will be uppermost in your minds, Whence comes the
increased yield of salts? Well, I will state one fact, and leave you
to ruminate on it, namely, by Mr. Croll's process we did not seem to
produce any sulphureted hydrogen. The experiments were conducted in a
room with ordinary doors and windows, but without a chimney; and we
were not troubled with any offensive smell--a state of things that
could not possibly have existed had we been experimenting with any
other apparatus hitherto employed in the manufacture of sulphate of
ammonia. The apparatus, which will presently be described, only
substitutes, for the present mode of distillation, a new one, which
forms the subject of Mr. Croll's patent. All other parts of present
apparatus can remain as they now exist.

Mr Croll has also introduced another mode of producing sulphate of
ammonia, which dispenses with all the apparatus hitherto in use after
the distillatory portion, and produces the salt in a state fit for the
farmer, ready to be put on the land. This process consists in sending
the products of distillation through a vessel filled with wood sawdust
saturated with sulphuric acid. The ammonia becomes fixed and
crystallized in the sawdust, and is ready for use. There are many
works, both at home and abroad, to which the conveyance of sulphuric
acid is both difficult and expensive, on account of the cost of
carriage and the breakage which occurs; and thus in many such works
the ammonia is not utilized. This saturated sawdust process will, I
think, remove the difficulty; for I find that dry sawdust absorbs
double its own weight of sulphuric acid, and this could be conveyed in
the most ordinary casks in a damp state, and save all waste and
annoyance from breakage of bottles. In this state it could be used by
the farmer, or the sulphate of ammonia could be washed out,
crystallized, and exported in the state of salt.

In the remainder of this paper I have been assisted by my son Bruce,
who also assisted in the experiments that I have described. He has
since been engaged on the trials on a manufacturing scale; and I ask
you to permit him to read the concluding portion of the paper, in
which he will describe the process, and what he has done.

The process referred to in the foregoing portion of the paper is a
method employed for heating the liquor, whereby a chemical action is
brought into play, with the results already mentioned. This method
consists in passing the products of combustion of a furnace from a
clear fire in a hot state through a still containing the ammoniacal
liquor. The hot gases from the furnace impart their heat to the
liquor, causing the volatilization of the condensed gases, and at the
same time act chemically upon the liquor and evolved gases, so that
ammonia and sulphuric acid are resulting products, in the compound
state of sulphate of ammonia. The formation of the ammonia produced in
the process is probably due to the decomposition of nitrogenous bodies
contained in solution in the liquor--the sulphocyanide, for instance;
the nitrogen being given off in the form of ammonia. Of the sulphuric
acid produced, we look upon the sulphureted hydrogen as the source,
also any sulphites existing in the liquor, which in their volatile
state take up the atom of oxygen necessary for their conversion into
sulphate.

[Illustration]

The apparatus used in working the process consists of a tower still,
containing a number of superposed trays about 3 or 4 inches apart,
with a lipped hole through the bottom of each at the side. The trays
are so placed in the tower that the holes are at alternate sides. The
liquor passes into the top of the still, and zigzags down through the
series of trays, as in an ordinary Coffey still. The bottom tray
differs from the rest; being much deeper, and having holes through it
connecting it with the furnace, which is set immediately below it. The
products of combustion of the fuel are caused to pass from the furnace
up through the holes in the trays in the still, and, together with the
gases evolved from the liquor, are directed into the saturator, where
the sulphate of ammonia is obtained either in solution or in the
crystalline state.

Where the process is at present being worked, an exhauster is used to
draw the furnace gases through the still; but it might be advantageous
to use a blower.

A small plant has been put in action at the gas works in Kilkenny and
another on a larger scale, and differing somewhat in detail, here in
Glasgow at the Alum and Ammonia Company's works, where the liquor from
the Tradeston Gas Works is converted. The trials on a working scale
have only been made at both places within the past ten days; and, so
far, nothing has appeared against the principle, though in certain of
the details of construction some alterations are being made to improve
it. The extra yield of salt from a given quantity of acid obtained in
the experiments has been proved in practice, as also the absorption of
the sulphureted hydrogen.

The other day, while ammoniacal liquor of about 9 oz. strength was
being run at the rate of 70 gallons per hour through the still, 5 feet
in diameter and 10 feet high, containing seventeen trays, no smell of
sulphureted hydrogen was perceptible from the waste gases from the
saturator, although on applying lead paper a slight trace of this
impurity was noticeable, and it may be stated that the gases were
being delivered at the ground level, where there was no difficulty in
testing them.

In the Glasgow apparatus we have found it advisable to enlarge the
pipe leading the gases into the saturator, as the volume of these is
much greater than would be the case in the ordinary method of working.
Further experience will probably indicate the desirability of
increasing the height of the still, which, being only 10 feet, is not
more than half the height that Coffey stills are ordinarily made.

       *       *       *       *       *



THE ANALYSIS OF URINE.


INTRODUCTION.

Whatever may be the position of British pharmacists in comparison with
those of other countries, it cannot be said that they have paid the
attention to the analysis of urine which the subject has received from
pharmacists on the Continent. Considering the importance of the
subject, this curious neglect can only be attributed to the fact that
the pharmacist in Great Britain is but slowly attaining the position
of chemical expert to the physician, which his foreign _confrere_ has
so long held with credit and even distinction. In France, for example,
M. Méhu, whose name is familiar to readers of this journal, is looked
upon as one of the leading authorities on morbid urine and its
analysis, and yet a list of goodly pharmaceutical papers shows that,
as the medical analyst, he has not forgotten his connection with pure
pharmacy.

There are several points about urinary analysis which entitle it to a
very high position in the estimation of pharmacists. In the first
place, the physician is no more likely to be fonder of the test tube
than of the pestle, of analyzing urine than of compounding his own
medicines. Leading men in the profession are more and more setting
their faces against the dispensing doctor, and there are numbers among
them who admit that they succeed no better as analysts than they do as
dispensers.

Some old fashioned practitioners trouble themselves very little about
their patients' urine, except, perhaps, in respect of sugar and
albumen. On the other hand, numbers of leading physicians, including
especially those highly educated gentlemen who cultivate a consulting
practice, are in the habit of pushing urinary analysis almost to an
excess. One well-known specialist of the writer's acquaintance, with
an extensive West End practice, makes quantitative determinations of
urea, uric acid, and total acidity, in addition to conducting other
diagnostic experiments, on every occasion that he interviews his
patients. By this means he has accumulated in his case books a mass of
data which he considers most valuable as an aid to diagnosis, and
through that to successful treatment.

Pharmacists are proverbially neat-handed, as Mr. Martindale would say,
and their habit of conducting dispensing operations which involve the
dexterous manipulation of very small quantities of material fit them
admirably to undertake volumetric and other rapid analytical
determinations. Compared with the doctor there is no doubt that in
this matter the chemist is _facile princeps_, and from the nature of
their respective occupations such could only have been expected. A few
chemists throughout the country lay themselves out to save their local
doctors from unwelcome test tube practice, and these almost to a man
find it pay. Some charge a handsome fee to patients, and a small one
when the analysis comes through the physician. Others find it to their
interest to furnish medical men with qualitative reports on sugar or
albumen gratuitously. Although this practice has certain obvious
drawbacks, if a doctor sends his prescriptions to a chemist, the
latter is often willing to gratuitously perform his chemical work. In
the present article we propose to describe briefly but fully the
methods which have been found of most value in practice.


PRELIMINARY OPERATIONS.

It is the practice of some physicians to direct the patient to
preserve all the urine passed in twenty-four hours, and to forward
this in one bottle for analysis. Others, again, merely send a small
sample of "morning" and "evening" urine in separate phials, desiring
only a comparative report. In the former case the _volume_ should be
accurately measured, and the quantity noted either in fluid ounces or
cubic centimeters before commencing the analysis. This need not be
done if small samples only are received. The _color_ should be noted.
It varies greatly, through every shade of yellow and amber to dark
brown, with a tinge of green or red, if the coloring matter of bile or
blood is present. Also note relative _transparency_ or _cloudiness_,
_specific gravity_, and _reaction_, as all these observations are
useful in diagnosis. _Odor_ is not quite so important. The _specific
gravity_ should be taken at about 60° F. in an ordinary specific
gravity bottle, or more conveniently by means of a good _urinometer_.
In the latter case it is very important to have an instrument of known
accuracy, many of those in the market being valueless. Urinometers of
glass, though fragile, are decidedly more cleanly and less liable to
get out of order than the gilded brass instruments carried in the
pocket by many physicians. Mr. J.J. Hicks, of 8 Hatton Garden, E.C.,
manufactures a very creditable "patent urinometer" at an extremely low
cost. Healthy urine has a density of from 1.015 to 1.025; but
variations from this range are common.

[Illustration]

A fair quantity of the urine, after shaking, should be placed in a
tall conical glass vessel, to allow easy collection of the precipitate
for subsequent, microscopical examination. If an abundant amorphous
deposit of a fawn or pink--from _uroerythrin_--color slowly settles
and is readily diffused, _urates_ in excess can be anticipated. Their
presence is proved by the readiness with which they dissolve on
warming with the supernatant urine to about the temperature of the
blood. No difficulty is experienced if small quantities of albumen are
present, as that body is not coagulated until the temperature rises
much higher. A sandy precipitate of free _uric acid_ will not dissolve
on warming the urine, and its identity can further be determined by
means of the microscope, or by applying a well-known color-reaction. A
grain or so is oxidized into reddish alloxan and alloxantin by
carefuly evaporating with a few drops of strong nitric acid on a piece
of porcelain. A little ammonia is then added, when the fine _purple_
murexide stain will be produced.

It is always advisable to mention the reaction to test papers of all
samples received. Urine is normally _acid_, but there are certain
diseases which render fluid neutral or alkaline. The urea of acid
urine on standing is changed by a putrefactive ferment into ammonic
carbonate, but this decomposition in a state of health should not
take place for at least twenty-four hours. Alkalies, or organic salts
of alkaline metals, when taken as medicine render the urine alkaline,
and the indication is then not of much moment; but if none of these
causes exist, the condition is of serious diagnostic import. Where it
is desired to determine the degree of acidity of the urine voided,
say, by a gouty patient, a dilute volumetric solution of caustic soda
should be employed, using a few drops of an alcoholic solution of
phenolphthalein as an indicator, and reporting in terms of oxalic
acid. The soda solution may conveniently contain the equivalent of one
milligramme of recrystallized oxalic acid (H_{2}C_{2}O_{4}.2H_{2}O) in
each cubic centimeter.


UREA.

Carbamide, as it is called by systematic chemists, or _urea_, is next
to water the largest constituent of urine, and forms about one-third
of its total solids. Derived from ammonic carbonate by abstracting two
molecules of the elements of water, it is readily converted by
putrefaction into that salt, and the urine under these circumstances
becomes strongly alkaline in reaction. Earthy phosphates then fall
naturally out of solution, so that the putrid fluid is always well
furnished with sediment. Nitrogen that has served its purpose as
muscle or other proteid leaves the animal economy chiefly in the form
of urea, and its proportion in the urine, therefore, is a fair index
of the activity of wasting influences.

For its determination Knop's sodic hypobromite method, on account of
its convenience, is now generally preferred. The volumetric process of
Liebig, which depends on the formation of an insoluble compound of
urea with mercuric nitrate, possesses no advantages and is troublesome
to work. The principle of the hypobromite process is simple. In a
strongly alkaline solution urea is broken up by sodic hypobromite, its
nitrogen being evolved in the gaseous state, and its carbon and
hydrogen oxidized to carbonic anhydride and water respectively. The
volume of free nitrogen obtained bears a direct ratio to the amount of
urea decomposed.

[Illustration]

Among the number of instruments which have been introduced for the
purpose of conveniently measuring the evolved gas, that of Gerrard, an
illustration of which we give, is one of the simplest, cheapest, and
best. The ureometer tube, _b_, is connected at the base with a movable
reservoir, _c_, and by means of a rubber tube passing through a cork
at the top to the generating bottle, _a_. To use the apparatus, fill
_b_ to zero with water and have the reservoir placed so high that it
contains only an inch or so of the liquid. Replace the cork with
attached tube tightly in _b_. Now pour into the generating bottle 25
c.c. of a solution prepared by dissolving 1 part of caustic soda in 2½
parts of distilled water, and dexterously break in the liquid a tube
containing 2.2 c.c. of bromine. The tubes will be found very
convenient, obviating entirely the suffocating fumes diffused in the
act of measuring bromine. Allow to stand in the solution of sodic
hypobromite thus prepared a test tube containing exactly 5 c.c. of the
urine under examination. Cork the bottle as shown in the illustration,
see that the water is at zero, and that the liquid in the reservoir is
at the same level, and then allow the urine to gradually mix with the
hypobromite solution. Cool the evolved gas by placing the bottle in
cold water, adjust the levels of the water in the tube and reservoir
(to obviate a correction for pressure), and read off the percentage of
urea in terms of which the tube is graduated. Stale urine, the urea of
which has largely been converted into ammonic carbonate, still yields
a very fair result, that salt being also completely split up by the
powerful oxidant employed. Should the urine contain albumen, it is
advisable to remove it by boiling and filtering, as, although only
slowly decomposed by the hypobromite solution, it communicates to the
liquid such a tendency to froth that the disengagement of the nitrogen
is seriously impeded. Most of those alkaloids which might possibly be
present do not yield the gas when treated in this manner, and
therefore may be disregarded.


SUGAR.

Glucose, so characteristic of _diabetes mellitus_, is not difficult of
detection or estimation. The facility with which it reduces alkaline
cupric, argentic, bismuthous, ferric, mercuric salts, indigo and
potassic picrate and chromate solutions has been utilized for the
preparation of several ready methods for its determination. Trommer's
test consists in adding enough cupric sulphate to color green, then
excess of alkali, and boiling. Yellow to brick-red cuprous oxide forms
as a heavy precipitate if glucose is present. The organic matter of
the urine prevents the precipitation of cupric hydrate on the addition
of the alkali. This test is delicate and deservedly popular. Fehling's
well-known solution contains sodio-potassic tartrate, which serves the
purpose chiefly of retaining the copper in solution. Unfortunately,
Fehling's original solution has a tendency to become hyper-sensitive
if kept long, a proneness to change that is much increased on
dilution. When so altered, the solution will yield a more or less
copious precipitate of cuprous oxide on merely boiling, and quite
independent of the presence of glucose. This decomposition is obviated
by preserving the copper salt in a separate solution from the tartrate
and alkali, and mixing before use. Schmiedeberg substitutes mannite
and Cresswell glycerin for the Rochelle salt, in order to render the
solution stable. Some prepared by the writer over twelve months ago,
according to the suggestion of the latter physician, has since shown
no signs of decomposition, and is now as good as it was then. For
qualitative purposes the solution may be prepared thus: Dissolve 35
gm. of recrystallized cupric sulphate and 200 c.c. of pure glycerin in
100 c.c. of distilled water. Dissolve separately 80 gm. of caustic
soda in 400 c.c. of water. Mix the solutions and boil for a quarter of
an hour. A small amount of reduction from impurity in the glycerin
takes place. Allow to stand till clear, decant, and dilute to 1,250
c.c. Ten cubic centimeters will then equal roughly 5 centigrammes of
glucose. For exact quantitative determination it is necessary to
standardize the solution with pure anhydrous dextrose.

To a practiced operator the indications yielded by the use of this
test are of great value; but beginners are exceedingly liable to
mistake its various reactions, and to report the urine as saccharine
when normal traces only of sugar are present. The bismuth test of
Bottger, as greatly improved by Nylander, is fairly delicate, and not
so easily misread as Fehling's. A large volume of reagent being used
with a comparatively small quantity of urine, the precipitate of
earthy phosphates does not interfere in the least with the reaction.
On boiling about 3 drachms of Nylander's solution and 20 minims of
urine for a minute or two, the liquid darkens with a trace of sugar,
and becomes opaque and black if the latter is present in quantity. The
reagent is prepared by dissolving 494 grains of caustic soda, 247
grains of Rochelle salt, and 154 grains of subnitrate of bismuth (free
from silver) in 13 fluid oz. of distilled water. It should be decanted
for use from any sediment.

[Illustration: DR. PAVY'S APPARATUS.]

In those cases where the amount of glucose present is required to be
determined, Dr. Pavy's ammonia cupric process distances all compeers
for ease of application and delicacy of end-reaction, combined with
considerable accuracy. His solution differs from that of Fehling in
containing ammonia, which dissolves the cuprous oxide as soon as it is
formed, yielding a colorless solution. It is only necessary,
therefore, to note the moment that the blue color of the liquid is
exactly discharged, in order to tell when all the copper present has
been reduced. Pavy's solution is prepared as follows: Dissolve 356
grains of Rochelle salt and the same weight of caustic potash in
distilled water; dissolve separately 73 grains of recrystallized
cupric sulphate in more water with heat. Add the copper solution to
that first prepared, and when cold add 12 fluid oz. of strong ammonia
(sp. gr. 0.880), and distilled water to 40 fluid oz. The estimation is
thus conducted: Dilute 10 c.c. of the ammoniated cupric
solution--equivalent to 5 milligrammes of glucose--with 20 c.c. of
distilled water, and place in a 6 or 8 oz. flask. Attach this by means
of a cork to the nozzle of an ordinary Mohr's burette, _b_, preferably
fitted with a glass stopcock, and filled previously with the diluted
urine. The small tube, _c_, which traverses the cork is intended to
permit the escape of steam. Now raise the blue liquid in the flask to
active ebullition--not too violent--by the aid of a spirit lamp or
small Bunsen flame. Turn the stopcock in order to allow the urine to
flow into the boiling solution at the rate of about 100 drops per
minute (not more or much less) until the azure tint is exactly
discharged. Then stop the flow, and note the number of cubic
centimeters used. That amount of dilute urine will contain 5
milligrammes of glucose. To render the determination as accurate as
possible, the urine should be diluted to such an extent that not less
than 4 or more than 7 c.c. are required to decolorize the solution,
and the proportions necessary will be found to vary from 1 part of
urine in 2½ to 1 in 30 or 40. The subsequent calculation is very
simple. If you wish to give the percentage of sugar, multiply 0.005 by
100, and divide the product by the number of cubic centimeters of
dilute urine employed. The figure thus obtained, multiplied by the
extent of dilution--i.e., if there is 1 of urine in 10, multiply by
10--gives the required percentage. The number of grains per fluid
ounce can of course be obtained by multiplying the percentage by
4.375. To observe easily the exact end-reaction a piece of white paper
should be placed behind the flask. If the analyst objects to the
escape of the waste ammoniacal fumes, they may be conducted by a
suitable arrangement into water or dilute acid. In addition to glucose
there are small quantities of other copper-reducing bodies present in
all urine, which always render the reading higher than strict accuracy
would demand. Their aggregate proportion, however, is, comparatively
speaking, so minute that for most medical purposes their presence may
be disregarded. Greater care must be exercised, though, in those
instances where such a deoxidizer as chloral hydrate is accidentally
present. In case of doubt, a little washed and pressed yeast should be
allowed to stand with the urine for a day or two in a warm place.
Alcoholic fermentation with evolution of carbonic acid gas soon sets
in, and the specific gravity of the liquid is lowered considerably.
This reaction points conclusively to the presence of sugar.

Based upon Braun's potassic picrate test, Dr. G. Johnson has devised a
colorimetric process for the estimation of sugar. On boiling an
alkaline solution of that salt with glucose, the former is reduced to
deep red-brown picramate, the color of the liquid, of course, varying
in intensity according to the proportion of sugar present. This
solution is diluted till it corresponds in tint with a ferric acetate
standard, and the percentage of sugar is then readily calculated. For
those who prefer this process the convenient apparatus manufactured by
Mr. Cetti, of 36 Brooke street, Holborn, is recommended, who will also
furnish full particulars of the test.


ALBUMEN.

Normal urine is free from coagulable proteids, though it is admitted
that albumen may sometimes occur in the absence of disease. It is
always highly important, therefore, to determine accurately the
presence or absence of this body. In the relentless malady named after
Richard Bright, the urine always contains albumen, and if accompanied
by the "casts" of the uriniferous tubules your report may amount to a
sentence of certain death. The tests which we now describe are
accurate and easily applied; but reliance should never be placed on
any single reaction--at any rate until the operator has acquired
considerable experience.

Galippe's _picric acid test_ has within the last few years attracted
much attention, chiefly through the commendation it has received from
Dr. George Johnson. A saturated solution is prepared by dissolving 140
grains of recrystallized picric acid (carbazotic acid, or, more
correctly, trinitrophenol) in 1 pint of water with heat, and decanting
the clear solution. Some of the urine is rendered perfectly bright by
filtration--repeated, if necessary--through good filtering paper, and
to this an equal volume of the picric acid solution is added. In the
presence of albumen a more or less distinct haze is produced, which on
heating to the boiling point is rather intensified than otherwise.
Peptones, if present, yield a similar haze, and quinine or other
alkaloid a more or less crystalline precipitate; but in both these
cases the opalescence is completely dissipated by heat. Mucin, an
important constituent of some urines, is not affected by picric acid,
and the test is decidedly one of great value.

The _nitric acid test_. Heller's contact method, which can also be
used with the last-described reagent, is the best mode of applying the
old-fashioned and favorite test with nitric acid. To 5 volumes of a
filtered saturated solution of magnesic sulphate, prepared by
dissolving 10 parts of the salt in 13 parts of distilled water, add 1
volume of strong nitric acid, and label "Sir W. Roberts' nitric acid
reagent." A couple of drachms of bright filtered urine is allowed to
float on an equal quantity of this solution in a test tube; care being
taken that the contact line is sharply defined. In a period of time
varying from a few seconds to a quarter of an hour, according to the
amount of albumen present, a delicate opalescent zone forms at the
point of junction, and if mucin also is present, a more diffused haze
higher up in the urine. Special attention should be given to the
position of the opacity. In some concentrated urines a belt of urates
will appear at the line of demarkation; but these dissolve on warming.
Moreover, owing to the dilution necessary in the mode of applying
Galippe's picric acid test, they are not so readily shown by the
latter. A ½ oz. glass syringe can very conveniently be substituted for
a test tube in making analyses according to Heller's method. Some of
the urine should be drawn up, and then an equal volume of the reagent.
On setting aside, the albumen ring will rapidly develop.

The _boiling test_. This method also is very delicate and valuable. It
depends on the well-known property possessed by many proteids of
coagulating under the influence of heat. The urine should have an acid
reaction to test paper; if alkaline, it must be cautiously neutralized
with dilute acetic acid. In either case a single drop of strong acetic
acid should be added to about three drachms of the bright liquid. If
this precaution is omitted, there is danger of precipitating earthy
phosphates on heating; and should a great excess of acid be employed,
a non-coagulable form of albumen known as syntonin is formed, besides
increasing the likelihood of precipitating mucin. Place the prepared
urine in a narrow test-tube and hold it in a small flame so that the
upper part only of the liquid approaches the boiling point. By this
means very small traces of albumen are easily observed, the
opalescence produced contrasting strongly with the cold and clear
fluid beneath.

The _ferrocyanide test_. Hydroferrocyanic acid yields a precipitate
immediately in the presence of much albumen, and if traces only are
present, in the course of a few minutes. To apply the test, strongly
acidulate with acetic acid, and then add a few drops of recently
prepared potassic ferrocyanide solution. This is one of the most
delicate tests known.

It is often desirable that the percentage of albumen present should be
determined at frequent intervals, in order to note the success or
otherwise of the physician's treatment. These quantitative
determinations, being intended only for comparative purposes, do not
demand any very excessive degree of accuracy, such as would be
difficult to obtain in ordinary practice. The recent method of a
Continental worker. Dr. Esbach, affords indications sufficiently
precise for therapeutical requirements, and is at the same time
extremely easy of application. The filtered acid urine is poured into
the glass tube up to the mark U, and then the special reagent is added
till the level of the liquid stands at R.

[Illustration]

Mix the liquids thoroughly, without shaking, by reversing the tube a
dozen times, close with a cork, and allow it to stand upright for
twenty-four hours. The height at which the coagulum then stands, read
off on the scale, will indicate the number of parts per thousand, or
grammes of albumen in one liter. This divided by ten gives the
percentage. Dr. Esbach's test solution is prepared by dissolving 10
grammes of picric acid and 20 grammes of citric acid in 900 c.c. of
boiling distilled water, and then adding, when cold, sufficient water
to yield 1 liter. The citric acid is only employed for the purpose of
maintaining the acidity of the liquid, and is really not essential.


URIC OR LITHIC ACID.

The determination of the proportion of uric acid in urine was formerly
rather neglected by physicians. There is now, however, a growing
tendency in a certain class of diseases to attach considerable
importance to its accurate estimation, and, as some little trouble is
involved, pharmacists should be prepared to undertake the work. A
rough way is to concentrate somewhat, acidulate with hydrochloric
acid, and collect and weigh the precipitate thrown down on standing.
There are several objections, however, to this method, and many
attempts have been made to elaborate a more reliable process. One of
the most recent, and which has been pronounced the most practical and
successful, has been devised by Professor Haycraft. Although
apparently rather detailed and elaborate, the determination is easy
and extremely simple.

The following solutions must be prepared: 1. Dissolve 5 grammes of
nitrate of silver in 100 c.c. of distilled water, and add ammonia
until the precipitate first formed redissolves. 2. Dilute strong
nitric acid with about two volumes of distilled water; boil, to
destroy the lower oxides of nitrogen, and preserve in the dark. 3.
Dissolve about 8 grammes of ammonic thiocyanate (sulphocyanide)
crystals in a liter of water, and adjust to decinormal argentic
nitrate solution, by diluting till one volume is exactly equal to a
volume of the latter. Dilute the solution thus prepared with nine
volumes of distilled water, and label "Centinormal ammonic-thiocyanate
solution." 4. A saturated solution of ferric alum. 5. Strong solution
of ammonia (sp. gr. 0.880). The uric acid estimation is conducted as
follows: Place 25 per cent. of urine in a beaker with 1 gramme of
sodic bicarbonate. Add 2 or 3 c.c. of strong ammonia, and then 1 or 2
c.c. of the ammoniated silver solution. If, on allowing the
precipitate caused by the latter reagent to subside, a further
precipitate is produced by the addition of more solution, the urine
contains an iodide, and silver solution must be added till there is an
excess. The gelatinous urate must now be collected, the following
special procedure being necessary: Prepare an asbestos filter by
filling a 4 oz. glass funnel to about one-third with broken glass, and
covering this with a bed of asbestos to about a quarter of an inch
deep. This is best managed by shaking the latter in a flask with water
until the fibers are thoroughly separated, and then pouring the
emulsion so made in separate portions on to the broken glass. On
account of the nature of the precipitate and of the filter, it is
necessary to use a Sprengel pump, in order to suck the liquid through.
The small apparatus sold to students by chemical instrument makers
will answer the purpose admirably. Having collected the precipitate of
silver urate on the prepared filter, wash it repeatedly with distilled
water, until the washings cease to become opalescent with a soluble
chloride. Now dissolve the pure urate by washing it through the filter
with a few cubic centimeters of the special nitric acid. The process
is carried out thus: Add to the liquid in the beaker a few drops of
the ferric-alum solution to act as an indicator, and from a burette
carefully drop in centinormal ammonic thiocyanate until a permanent
red coloration of ferric thiocyanate barely appears. The number of
cubic centimeters used of the thiocyanate solution multiplied by
0.00168 gives the amount of uric acid in the 25 c.c. One milligramme
may be added to compensate for loss, and the whole multiplied by four
gives the percentage of uric acid in the urine. The whole process
depends on the fact that argentic urate fails to dissolve in ammonia,
but is soluble in nitric acid, and is thus easily obtained in the pure
state. By determining the amount of combined silver, the percentage of
uric acid can readily be calculated. The addition of sodic bicarbonate
prevents the otherwise inevitable reduction of the silver salt.


BILE.

In diseases affecting the liver, the urine frequently becomes
contaminated with biliary constituents. If the coloring matter of bile
is present (_bilirubin_, etc.), the liquid is darkened considerably in
tint, and may assume various shades of brown or green. Should the
color be decided, the fluid will be found to foam strongly on shaking,
and white blotting-paper will be stained by it yellow or greenish.
These characters point to the presence of bile in fair quantity, and
it is only necessary to apply a single confirmatory test. Allow some
of the urine to flow carefully, according to Heller's method, over a
couple of drachms of yellow nitric acid (i.e., acid containing traces
of the lower oxides of nitrogen). A number of rapidly changing colors
soon appear, passing through green, blue, violet, and red to yellow.
The first of these tints, green, is the only one that undoubtedly
points to the presence of biliary coloring matter, all the others
being yielded by another constituent of urine, indican, when similarly
treated. Should the color of the urine suggest the presence of only
traces of bile, the best plan is not to treat the urine directly, but
extract a quantity of it by shaking with chloroform. On separating the
latter, and covering with yellowish nitric acid, the color changes
will be observed penetrating into the chloroform. A little, also,
evaporated on a slide yields reddish crystals, which exhibit a pretty
play of colors under the microscope when touched with nitric acid.

It is not unfrequently considered important to test urine for the
sodium salts of the conjugate biliary acids, taurocholic and
glycocholic. Dr. Oliver, of Harrogate, has proposed the use of an
acidulated peptone solution for this purpose, and the reaction is
undoubtedly a good one. The reagent is prepared by dissolving 30
grains of flesh peptone, 4 grains of salicylic acid, and 30 minims of
strong acetic acid, in sufficient water to produce 8 fluid oz. of
solution. Thus prepared, the peptone shows no signs of decomposition
on keeping. To use the test, mix 1 fluid drachm of the reagent with 20
minims of urine, previously diluted to a standard specific gravity of
1.003. A haze is produced, which will be found to be more or less
distinct, according to the proportion of bile salts present.


CHLORIDES.

A normal and variable constituent of urine, chlorine, is not usually
required to be determined. Should the estimation be considered
necessary, however, Volhard's silver process, which has been noticed
in treating of uric acid, possesses several advantages over other
methods: 10 c.c. of urine are diluted with 60 c.c. of distilled water.
To this is added 2 c.c. of pure 70 percent. nitric acid and 15 c.c. of
a standard solution of silver nitrate (1 c.c. = 0.01 gramme NaCl).
Shake well and make up to 100 c.c. with water. All the chlorine
present will now be precipitated in the liquid as a silver salt.
Filter an aliquot part (about 70 or 80 c.c.), and determine in the
clear solution the excess of silver with standard ammonic thiocyanate,
using the ferric alum indicator. The difference between this and the
amount of silver originally present in the aliquot part has been
precipitated as silver chloride (AgCl). The whole estimation should be
conducted as rapidly as possible. A simple calculation will then give
the proportion of chlorine in the dilute urine, and this multiplied by
ten shows the percentage. It is usual to report in terms of NaCl.


PHOSPHATES.

In those cases where the pharmacist is asked to determine phosphoric
acid quantitatively, the uranic-acetate method described in Sutton's
"Volumetric Analysis" yields the most satisfactory results. The
process requires some little experience to use it with ease, and is
too lengthy for quotation here.


MICROSCOPICAL EXAMINATION.

A good microscope is one of the first necessaries of the urinary
analyst. By its aid it is possible to distinguish easily many solid
constituents of urine--normal and pathological; indeed, the
examination of urinary deposits is often quite as important as the
more elaborate wet analysis. A well-made instrument is no luxury to
the pharmacist; but even those whose chief aim is _bon marché_ can
procure capital students' microscopes at exceedingly low cost. One of
the cheapest, and at the same time an instrument of good quality, is
the "Star," manufactured by Messrs. R. & J. Beck, of 31 Cornhill, E.C.

Equipped with a good microscope, the analyst should obtain a fair
supply of typical slides for comparison. The following selection will
be found sufficient for his purpose: A set of the chief varieties of
uric acid, calcic oxalate, and triple phosphate; the urates and
oxalurates; urea nitrate, calcic hippurate and carbonate, hippuric
acid, cystin, well mounted "casts" of the _tubili uriniferi_,
spermatozoa, etc. In doubtful cases microchemical reagents can be
employed, using Professor Attfield's "Chemistry" as a guide. Where
mounted objects are not at hand, reference may be made to the
capitally executed plates in that work. After obtaining a little
experience in the use of the microscope, no difficulty will be met
with in these examinations.--_The Chemist and Druggist._

       *       *       *       *       *



LIQUID AND GASEOUS RINGS.


All who have learned a little of chemistry doubtless remember the
experiment with vortex rings produced by phosphorus trihydride mixed
with a little phosphide of hydrogen. As this curious phenomenon
evidently does not depend upon the peculiar properties of this gas, I
have been trying for some time to reproduce it by means of tobacco
smoke, and even with chemical precipitates, which are, in a way,
liquid smoke. After a few tentatives made at different times, my
experiment succeeded perfectly. The following is, in brief, the mode
of operating:

Take up a little hydrochloric acid in a pipette and put a few drops of
it into a very dilute solution of nitrate of mercury, and you will
obtain rings of mercurial chloride that will, in their descent, take
on the same whirling motion that characterizes the aureolas of
phosphureted hydrogen.

The drops of acid should be allowed to fall slowly, and from a feeble
height, to the surface of the liquid contained in the vessel. It is
unnecessary to say that the result may be obtained through the use of
other solutions, provided that a precipitate is produced that is not
very thick, for in the latter case the rings do not form. If need be,
we may have recourse to milk, and carefully pour a few drops of it
into a glass of water.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.--PRODUCTION OF SMOKE RINGS.]

As regards smoke rings, it is easy to produce these by puffing cigar
smoke through a tube (Fig. 1). But, in order to insure success, a few
precautions are necessary. The least current of air must be avoided,
and this requires the closing of the windows and doors. Moreover, in
order to interrupt the ascending currents that are formed in proximity
to the body, the operation should be performed over a table, as shown
in the figure. The rings that pass beyond the table are not
perceptibly influenced by currents of hot air. A tube ¾ inch in
diameter, made by rolling up a sheet of common letter paper, suffices
for making very beautiful rings of one inch or more in diameter. In
order to observe the rings well, it is well to project them toward the
darkest part of the room, or toward the black table, if the operator
is seated. The first puffs will not produce any rings if the tube has
not previously been filled with smoke. The whirling motion is
perfectly visible on the exit of the ring from the tube, and even far
beyond.

[Illustration: FIGS. 2, 3, AND 4.--VARIOUS ASPECTS OF
SMOKE RINGS.]

As for the aspect of the rings projected with more or less velocity
to different distances from the tube, Figs. 2, 3, and 4 give quite a
clear idea of that. Figs. 3 and 6 show the mode of destruction of the
rings when the air is still. There are always filaments of smoke that
fall after being preceded by a sort of cup. These capricious forms of
smoke, in spreading through a calm atmosphere, are especially very
apparent when the rays of the sun enter the room. Very similar ones
may be obtained in a liquid whose transparency is interfered with by
producing a precipitate or rings in it.--_La Nature._

[Illustration: FIGS. 5 AND 6..--SMOKE RINGS BREAKING UP.]

       *       *       *       *       *



SHALL WE HAVE A NATIONAL HORSE?


_To the Editor of_ SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN SUPPLEMENT:

In your issue for August 13 is "A Proposition for a Government
Breeding Farm for Cavalry Horses," by Lieutenant S.C. Robertson
U.S.A., First Cavalry. The article is national in conception, deep in
careful thought, which only gift, with practical experience with
ability, could so ably put before the people. As a business
proposition, it is creditable to an officer in the United States army.

The husbandman and agriculturist, also the navy and scientific
explorations, each in turn present their wants before the government
for help in some way, and receive assistance. The seaman wants new and
improved or better ships, and the navy gets them; but the poor
cavalryman must put up with any kind of a craft he can get; the horse
is the cavalryman's ship--war vessel on land.

The appeal of Lieut. Robertson to our government for better horses is
reasonable; and he tries to help the government with a carefully
studied business proposition through which to enable our government to
grant the supplication of the army. That Lieut. Robertson loves a
horse, and knows what a good one is, no man can dispute who has read
his article; but as to how it can best be produced, he does not know.
While I for one applaud both his article and his earnestness, with
your permission I will make some suggestions as to the breeding side
of his proposition. The business portion will, of course, come under
the ordnance department in any event.

As for a government breeding establishment for any kind of livestock
in this great agricultural country, I feel that such would be at
variance with the interests of husbandry in America.

The breeding of horses is particularly an important branch of
agriculture, and the farmers should be assisted by the government in
the improvement of their horses, until they are raised to a standard
which in case of emergency could supply the army at a moment's notice
with the best horses in the world at the least possible expense.

Our government Agricultural Bureau is constantly spending thousands of
dollars to help the agriculturist in matter of better and greater
varieties of improved seeds and the better way for cultivation. Now,
the seed of animal life is as important as in vegetable life to the
interest and welfare of the husbandman, which also means the
government. For the government to become a monopolist of any important
branch in agriculture is not in harmony with the principles of our
republican-democratic form of government. While advocating a
protective tariff against outside depreciation of home industries, our
government should not in any way approach monarchical intrusion upon
the industries of its husbandmen. Our government cannot afford to make
its agriculturists competitors in so important a matter to them (the
farmers) as in the raising of horses; but the government can see to it
that the husbandman has a standard for excellence in the breeding of
horses which shall be recognized as a national standard the civilized
world over. Then, by that standard, and through our superior
advantages over any other civilized nation in the vast extent of
cheap and good grass lands, with abundance of pure water, and with all
temperatures of climate, we can grow, as a people, the best horses in
the world, to be known as the National Horse of America. Our
government must have a blood standard for the breeding of horses, by
which our horses can be bred and raised true to a type, able to
reproduce itself in any country to which we may export them; and the
types can be several, as our territory is so great and demands so
varied, but blood and breeding must be the standard for each type. Our
fancy breeders have a standard now, called a "time standard," which is
purely a gambling standard, demoralizing in all its tendencies to both
man and beast. With this the government need have nothing to do, for
it will die out of itself as the masses learn more of it, and
especially would it cease to be, once the government established a
_blood_ standard for the breeding of all horses, and particularly a
National Horse.

When the cereal crops of our country are light, or the prices fall
below profitable production, the farmer has always a colt or two to
sell, thus helping him through the year. In place of constantly
importing horses from France, England, and Scotland, where they are
raised mostly in paddocks, and paying out annually millions of
dollars, it is our duty to be exporting.

As an American I am ashamed when I see paraded at our county or state
fairs stallions and mares wearing the "blue ribbon" of superexcellence,
with boastful exclamation by the owner of "a thoroughbred imported
Percheron, or a thoroughbred imported French coacher, or a
thoroughbred imported Scotch Clyde, or a thoroughbred imported English
coacher, or a thoroughbred imported English Shire, or a thoroughbred
imported English Cleveland Bay!"

The American farmer and his boys look on aghast at the majesty and
beauty of these prize winners over our big-headed, crowbar-necked,
limp-tailed, peeked-quartered horses called "standard bred!" What
standard? "Time standard," as created by a man who is neither a
horseman nor a breeder; but because of the lack of intelligent
information and want of courage upon the part of a few, this man's
_ipse dixit_ has become law for the American breeders until such time
as cultured intelligence shall cause them to rebel. It soon will.

It is indeed time for the government to step in and regulate our horse
breeding. Of all the national industries there is none of more
importance than that of horses. More so in America than in any other
country, because our facilities are greater, and results can be
greater under proper regulation. Lieut. Robertson has proved to be the
right man in the right place, to open the door for glorious results to
our nation. No one man or a small body of men can regulate this
horse-breeding industry, but as in France, Russia, and England, the
government must place its hand and voice.

We are indeed an infant country, but have grown to an age where
parental restraint must be used now, if ever. We have millions of
farmers in America, breeding annually millions of horses; and except
we have another internal war, our horses will soon become a burden and
a pest.

There are numbers of rich men throughout the country breeding fancy
horses, for sport and speculation, but they only add to the increasing
burden of useless animals, except for gambling purposes; for they are
neither work horses, coach horses, nor saddle horses. Our farmers of
the land are the breeders, as our recent war of the rebellion
testified. The war of 1812, the Mexican war of 1847, and the war of
1861 each called for horses at a moment's notice, and our farmers
supplied them, destroying foundation bloods for recuperation. From
1861 to 1863 the noble patriotism of our farmers caused them to vie
with each other as to who should give the best and least money to help
the government; and cannot our government now do something for the
strength and sinew of the land, the farmers?

I was dealing in horses, more or less, from 1861 to 1863 (as I had
been before and long after), and many was the magnificent horse I saw
led out by the farmer for the government, at a minimum price, when,
previous to 1861, $400, $500, and even $600 was refused for the same
animals. Horses that would prove a headlight to any gentleman's coach
in the city, and others that would trot off fourteen to sixteen miles
an hour on the road as easy as they would eat their oats, went into
the cavalry or artillery or to baggage trains. What were left for
recuperation at the close of the war were mongrels from Canada or the
Indian and wild lands of the West, and such other lazy brutes as our
good farmers would not impose upon the government with or later were
condemned by the army buyers. These were largely of the Abdallah type
of horse, noted for coarseness, homeliness, also soft and lazy
constitutions. No one disputes the brute homeliness of the Abdallah
horse, and in this the old and trite saying of "Like begets like" is
exemplified in descendants, with which our country is flooded. The
speed element of which we boast was left in our mares of Arabian blood
through Clay and Morgan, but was so limited in numbers as to be an
apology for our present time standard in the breeding of fancy horses.
Knowing that Abdallah blood produced no speed, and being largely
ignorant as to the breeding of our mares, which were greatly scattered
over the land after the war, some kind of a guess had to be made as to
the possibility of the colts we were breeding, hence the time standard
fallacy. But it has ruined enough men, and gone far enough.

Upon Lieutenant Robertson's proposition, a turn can be made, and a
solid base for blood with breeding of all American horses can be
demanded by the government for the country's good.

From the earliest history of man, as a people increased in wealth,
they gave attention to mental culture with refinement; following which
the horse was cultivated to a high _blood_ standard with national
pride. From the Egyptians, the Moors, the Romans, and Britons to
France, Russia, and Prussia we look, finding the horse by each nation
had been a national pride--each nation resorting to the same primitive
blood from which to create its type, and that primitive was the
Arabian. Scientists have theorized, men have written, and boys have
imagined in print, as to some other than the Arabian from which to
create a type of horse, and yet through all ages we find that Arabian
has been the one stepping stone for each advanced nation upon which
blood to build its national horse.

Scientists have reasoned and explored, trying to prove to the
contrary, but what have they proved? The Arabian horse still remains
the fact.

The lion, the tiger, the leopard, still remain the same, as does the
ass and the zebra. As God created and man named them, with all animal
life, subject to the will of man, so do they all continue to remain
and reproduce, each true to its type, free from imperfections or
disease; also the same in vegetable and mineral life. In animal life,
the build, form, color, size, and instincts remain the same, true to
its blood from the first, and yet all was created for man through
which to amuse him and make him work.

It is a fact that all of man's creations from any primitive life,
either animal or vegetable, will degenerate and cease to be, while of
God's perfect creations, all continue the same.

We will condense on the horse. The Arabian is the most pliable in its
blood of any other known to man. From it, any other type can be
created. Once a type has been created, it must be sustained in itself
by close breeding, which can be continued for quite a number of years
without degeneracy. For invigoration or revitalizing, resort must be
made to its primitive blood cause. To go out of the family to colder
or even warmer creations of man means greater mongrelization of both
blood and instinct, also to invite new diseases.

Nothing is more infatuating than the breeding of horses. A gifted
practical student in the laws of animal life may create a new and
fixed type of horse, but it can be as quickly destroyed by the
multitude, through ignorant mongrelization.

In the breeding of horses, our people are wild; and in no industry can
our government do more good than in making laws relating to their
breeding. It can father the production of a national horse without
owning a breeding farm. It can make _blood_ and _breeding_ a standard
for different types, and see to it that its laws are obeyed, thus
benefiting all the agriculturists, and have breeding farms in America;
and also itself as a government, financially. We must not however
begin upon the creation of other nations, but independently upon God's
gift to man, as did England, France, and Russia. That a government
should interfere in the breeding of horses is no new thing. The Arabs
of the desert boast to this day of King Solomon's stud of horses; but
in each and every instance where a nation has regulated and encouraged
the breeding of the horse to a high standard of excellence, they have
all begun at the primitive, or Arabian. Thus England in boasting of
her thoroughbred race horse admits it to be of Arabian origin. Russia
in boasting of her Orloff trotting and saddle horse tells you it is of
Arabian origin. France boldly informs you that her Percheron is but an
enlarged Arabian, and offers annual special premiums to such as
revitalize it with fresh Arabian blood.

After the war of 1812 our forefathers imported many Arabian stallions
to recuperate the blood of their remnants in horses. From 1830 such
prominent men as Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay said all they could by
private letter and public speech to encourage the importation of and
breeding freely to the Arabian horse, and specially did the State of
Kentucky follow the advice of Henry Clay, so that from 1830 up to 1857
Kentucky had more Arabian stallions in her little district than the
combined States of the Union. Kentucky has had a prestige in her mares
since the war, and it comes in the larger amount of Arabian blood
influence she has had in them, than could be found elsewhere. Kentucky
is shut in, as it were, and retaining her mares largely impregnated
with Arabian blood, all that was necessary for them to do was to get
trotting-bred stallions from New York State, then eclipse all other
States in the produce. While I cheerfully award to Kentucky all credit
due to it, I am not willing that Lieut. Robertson should make his base
for government breeding establishment sectional, nor would I submit to
England through Kentucky. I am too American for that.

For cavalry purposes, the Prussian horse is the best in the world, and
is also Arabian in its closest foundation.

To get at this blood question more definitely, let us inquire into
these different recognized self-producing national types of horses
abroad.

First is the English thoroughbred race horse, which is simply an
improved Arab. The functions of this English national horse are but
twofold--to run races and to beget himself, after which he ceases to
be of value. He is not a producer of any other type of value; to breed
him out of his family is mongrelism and degeneracy, so we don't want
him, even though we could humiliate our American pride through our
loved State of Kentucky.

Count Orloff of Russia was a great horseman, exceedingly fond of
horseback riding independent of the chase. He tried in 1800 to breed a
satisfactory horse from the English thoroughbred race horse, but went
from bad to worse until he resorted to the ever-pliant blood of the
Arabian. He sent to Egypt and secured a thoroughbred Arabian stallion,
paying $8,000 for him (in our money). This horse he bred to Danish
mares, largely of Arabian blood, and created a very stout, short-backed
horse, standing from 15½ to 15¾ and 16 hands high, of great trotting
speed, also able to run to weight, and with good disposition, which
the English thoroughbred did not have. This type he continued to
close-breed, going back to the Arabian for renewed stoutness. At his
death, his estates passed to his daughter, who continued her father's
breedings until the Russian government purchased the entire
collection, about 1846, since when the Russian government Orloff
trotting and saddle horse has become famous the world over as a
first-class saddle, cavalry, stage coach, and trotting horse combined.
They are broken at three years of age, and scarce any that cannot beat
2:30 at trotting speed, and from that down to 2:15 in their crude way
of hitching and driving. This is something for American breeders to
think very interestedly upon.

France wanted heavy draught horses, also proud coach horses; so rather
than go to any competing nation for their created types, her
enterprising subjects took the same Arabian blood, and from it created
the beautiful Percheron, also French coach horses, so greatly valued
and admired the world over, and which the gifted and immortal Rosa
Bonheur has so happily reproduced upon canvas. Can America show any
kind of a horse to tempt her brush?

With regard to a foundation for a government or national horse, I am
certain so gifted and able United States officer as Mr. S.C. Robertson
did not know that it was unnecessary to go to England for the blood of
their national horse, even though we smuggled it through Kentucky or
any other of our States. Again, it would be impossible to produce any
type of a horse from the English thoroughbred, except a dunghill, and
Mr. Robertson would not have his government breed national dunghills!

I love England as our mother country, but am an American, born and
dyed in the wool to our independence, from the "Declaration."

Now let us see what England says of her thoroughbred: "He is no longer
to be relied upon for fulfilling his twofold functions as a racer and
reproducer of himself. He is degenerating in stoutness and speed. As a
sire he has acquired faults of constitution and temper which, while
leaving him the best we have, is not the best we should aspire to
have. His stoutness and speed are distinctly Arabian qualities, to
which we must resort for fresh and pure blood." We have shown that the
Englishman says "his thoroughbred is full of radical and growing
defects in wind, tendons, feet, and temper, and that his twofold
functions are to run races and reproduce himself, which are the end of
his purpose." Does our government want breeding farms upon which to
nurse these admitted "defects," including the "confirmed roarer," for
cavalry horses? I quote again: "Those who have had most to do with him
are ready to admit that he no longer possesses the soundness,
stoutness, speed, courage, and beauty he inherited from his Arabian
parentage. As a sire for half-bred stock, he may do for those who will
use him, but we must resort to the Arabian if we would revitalize and
sustain our thoroughbred race horse."

In the face of these statements, in print abroad, would Lieut.
Robertson make the base for our proposed national horse that of the
English thoroughbred, scattering the weeds from such imperfect
breedings among the farmers of our land?

I am writing as an old horseman and breeder, and not as a newspaper
man or young enthusiast, although the enthusiasm of youth is still in
me, for which I am thankful.

This question of horse breeding I have been deeply interested in for
forty years past. Let me quote to the reader from one of many letters
I have received from Sir Wilfrid Seawen Blunt during the past seven
years. His practical knowledge of the English thoroughbred race horse
and his blood cause, the Arabian, is the equal if not superior to any
other one man of this present age.

With his wife, Lady Anne, he dwelt with the different tribes of the
desert, studying the Arabs as a people, in their customs and habits,
also traditions with beliefs. In matter of their horses, Mr. Blunt
made a special study, while Lady Anne put her diaries in book form
after her return, and which book should be owned by every cultured and
educated lady in America. After spending a year in Arabia, traveling
both sides of the Euphrates and through Mesopotamia, as no other
Anglo-Saxons have been known to do, living with the different Bedouin
tribes of the desert as they lived, Mr. Blunt and his wife, Lady Anne,
came out with sixteen of the choicest bred mares to be found, also two
stallions, the mares mostly with foal. These were placed upon their
estates, "Crabbet Park," to continue inbreeding as upon the desert,
pure to its blood. As this question in itself will make a long and
interesting article, I will avoid it at present, quoting to the reader
from one of my old letters:


    "CRABBET PARK, SUSSEX, ENGLAND.

    "Dear Sir: Political matters have prevented an earlier reply to
    your last.

    "I am well satisfied with my present results, and shall not
    abandon what I have undertaken. The practical merits of Arabian
    blood are well understood by us.

    "Our sale of young stock maintains itself in good prices in
    spite of bad times; indeed, my average within the past two years
    has risen from £84 to £102 on the pure-breds sold as yearlings,
    and we receive the most flattering and satisfactory accounts
    from purchasers, although it is known that I retain the best of
    each year's produce, and so have greatly improved my breeding
    stock.

    "You speak of the opinions of the press as against you. The
    sporting press are not breeders, but are the mouthpiece of
    prejudices. We have had them somewhat against us, but they now
    view things in more friendly tone.

    "For immediate use in running races (in which the sporting press
    are chiefly interested), the Arabian in his undeveloped state
    and under size will not compete with the English race horse.
    This fact has caused racing men to doubt his other many and more
    important merits; indeed, it is only those who have had personal
    experience of him that as yet acknowledge them.

    "The strong points in the Arabian are many:

    "_First_, his undoubted soundness in constitution, in _wind_,
    _limb_, and _feet_. It will be noticed that the Englishman must
    have soundness in wind, limb, and feet, showing that their
    thoroughbred is the thorn in that particular. The Arabian has
    also wonderful intelligence, great beauty, and good disposition,
    with an almost affectionate desire to adapt himself to your
    wishes.

    "In breeding, I have found the pure-breds delicate during the
    first few weeks after birth, and have lost a good many,
    especially those foaled early in the year; yet it is a
    remarkable fact that during the eight years of my breeding them,
    I have had no serious illness in the stables; once over the
    dangerous age, they seem to have excellent constitutions, and
    are always sound in _wind_, _limb_, and _feet_.

    "_Second_, they are nearly all good natural and _fast walkers_,
    also fast trotters; and from the soundness of their feet are
    especially fitted for fast road work, being able to do almost
    any number of miles without fatigue.

    "_Third_, they are nearly all good natural jumpers, and I have
    not had a single instance of a colt that would not go across
    country well to hounds.

    "They are very bold fencers, requiring neither whip nor spur.
    They carry weight well, making bold and easy jumps where other
    larger horses fail.

    "_Fourth_, they have naturally good mouths, and good tempers,
    with free and easy paces; so that one who has accustomed
    himself to riding a pure-bred Arabian will hardly go back, if he
    can help it, to any other sort of horse.

    "There is all the difference in riding the Arabian and the
    ordinary English hunter or half-bred that there is in riding in
    a well-hung gig or a cart without springs.

    "_Fifth._ As sires for half-bred stock, the Arabian may not be
    better than a _first-class_ English thoroughbred, but is
    certainly better than a _second_-class one, and _first_-class
    sires are out of the reach of all ordinary breeders; for that
    reason I recommend a fair trial of his quality, confident your
    breeders will not be disappointed.

    "With good young mares who require a horse to give their
    offspring quality, that is to say, beauty, with courage and
    stoutness, and with a turn of speed for fast road work, the
    Arabian is better than any class of English thoroughbreds that
    are used for cross breeding.

    "I trust then for that reason you will not allow yourself to be
    discouraged by the slowness of the people to appreciate all the
    merits of the Arabian at once.

    "Our breeders are full of prejudices, and only experience can
    teach them the value of things outside their own circle of
    knowledge.

    "I have no doubt whatever that truth will in the end prevail;
    but you must have patience. Remember that a public is always
    impatient, and most often unreasonably so.

    "My stud I keep at a permanent strength of twelve brood mares,
    and as many fillies growing in reserve.

    "You ask me regarding the _pacing_ gait. I have seen it in the
    pure-bred Arabs on the desert; and in many parts of the East it
    is cultivated, notably in Asia Minor and Barbary. The walk,
    pace, amble, trot, and run are found in the Arabian, and either
    can be cultivated as a specialty.

    "If you think any of my letters to you are of general value to
    your people, I am quite willing you should so use them.

    "I am, very truly yours,

                                      "WILFRID SCAWEN BLUNT.
    "To RANDOLPH HUNTINGTON, Rochester, N.Y."


My experience with Arabian blood the past seven years justifies all
that Mr. Blunt has predicted to me from time to time. So also do old
letters by Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay hold out the same inducements
to the breeders of Kentucky and Tennessee in their day.

From my long years of experience in all classes of horses, I am frank
to say to-day that I would not be without a thoroughbred Arabian
stallion on my place, and journalists who inform their readers that
they "are liable to splints, ringbones, and spavins," give themselves
away to all intelligent readers and breeders as exceedingly
superficial in matter of horses; for ringbones and spavins are
positively unknown among the Arabs. The way to get rid of such
imperfections in our mongrel breed of horses is to fill them up with
pure Arab blood.

Such paper men also talk about "_fresh Diomed_" and "fresh Messenger
blood," as though there had been a drop of it in never so diluted form
for any influence these many years, of course forgetting that _Diomed_
was a very strongly _inbred Arabian_ horse. He came to this country
when 21 years old.

He was foaled 1777, and arrived in Virginia in 1798. From his old age
and rough voyage in an old-fashioned ship, it required nearly a year
to recuperate from the journey, and was 23 years old before he could
do stud service to any extent. Then, at no time to his death was he a
sure foal getter, even to a few mares. He died in 1808, thirty-one
years old, long enfeebled and unfit for service.

Between 1808 and 1887 is quite a period of time, during which we have
had four different wars, beginning with 1812, and how much Diomed
blood does the reader suppose there is in this country? Yet I take up
daily and weekly papers devoted to horse articles, extolling the value
of _Diomed_ blood as cause for excellence in some young horse. Are we
a nation of idiots to be influenced by such nonsense?

I wish there was fresh Diomed blood; thus the public would know what
Arab blood had done for England. So I can say of imported Messenger.
What our breeders want is good, solid information in print, and not
the; dreamings of some professional writer for money. For myself, I am
on the downhill side of life, but so long as I can help the young by
pen or example, I shall try.

                                                 RANDOLPH HUNTINGTON.
Rochester, N.Y.

       *       *       *       *       *



SCENES AMONG THE EXTINCT VOLCANOES OF RHINELAND.


In the province of the Rhine there is a range of mountains, including
several extinct volcanoes, which offer grand and beautiful scenery and
every opportunity for geological study, leading the mind back to the
early ages of the earth.

Let us take an imaginary trip through this region, starting on our
wanderings from the Rhine, where it breaks through the vine-clad slate
mountains of the Westerwald and the Eifel. A short distance above the
mouth of the Ahr we leave its banks, turning to the west, and entering
the mountains at the village of Nieder Breisig. A pretty valley leads
us up through orchards and meadows. The lower hills are covered with
vineyards and the mountains with a dense growth of bushes, so that we
do not obtain an extended view until we reach an elevated ridge.

[Illustration: DISTANT VIEW OF THE VOLCANIC PORTION OF THE EIFEL,
TAKEN FROM THE HEIGHTS OF THE SCHNEIFEL.]

The valley of the Rhine lies far below us, but the glittering surface
of the river, with the little towns, the castles and villas and the
gardens and vineyards on its banks are still visible, while in the
background the mountains of the Westerwald have risen above the hills
on the river. This range stretches out into a long wooded ridge
crowned by cone-shaped peaks of basalt. To the northwest of this lies
Siebengebirge, with its numerous domes and pinnacles, making a grand
picture veiled in the blue mist of distance. On the opposite side we
have a very different view of curious dome and cone shaped summits
surrounded by undulating plateaus or descending into deep ravines and
gorges. It is the western part of the volcanic region of Rhineland
which lies before us, and in the center of which is the Laachersee or
lake of Laach. The origin of these volcanoes is not as remote as many
suppose, but their activity must have continued for a comparatively
long period, judging from the extent of their lava beds.

[Illustration: THE SHORES OF LAACHERSEE.]

There was a time when the sea covered the lowlands of North Germany,
and the waves of a deep bay washed the slopes of the Siebengebirge.
Then the bed of the Rhine lay in the highlands, which it gradually
washed away until the surface of the river was far, far below the
level of its old bed; and then the volcanoes poured forth their
streams of lava over the surrounding plains.

In the course of time the surface of the country has changed so that
these lava beds now lie on the mountain sides overhanging the valleys
of to-day. Some of the volcanoes sent forth melted stones and ashes
from their summits, and streams of lava from their sides, while the
craters of others cracked and then sank in, throwing their debris over
the neighboring country. In the Eifel there are many such funnels
which now contain water forming beautiful lakes (Maaren), which add
much to the scenery of the Eifel. The Laachersee is the largest of
these lakes. In the mean time the channel of the Rhine had been worn
away almost to its present level, but the mountains still sent forth
their streams of lava, which stopped brooks and filled the ravines,
and even the Rhine itself was dammed up by the great stream from
Fornicherkopf forming what was formerly the Neuwied. The old lava
stream which obstructed the river is still to be seen in a towering
wall of rock, extending close beside the road and track that follow
the shore.

[Illustration: CRATER AND LAKE ON TOP OF THE MOSENBERGE.]

After having made these observations, we descend from the height which
afforded us the view of the Vinrt Valley. A clear brook flows through
green meadows and variegated fields stretch along the mountain sides,
while modest little villages are scattered among the fruit trees. On
the other side of the valley rises the Herchenberg, an extinct
volcano. As we climb its sides we see traces of the former
devastation. Loose ashes cover the ground, bits of mica glittering in
the sun, and on the summit we find enormous masses of stone which were
melted and then baked together. In the center lies the old crater, a
quiet, barren place bearing very little vegetation, but from its wall
an excellent view of the surrounding country can be obtained. Not far
from this mountain lies the mighty Bausenberg, with its immense, well
preserved crater, only one side of which has been broken away, and
which is covered with a thick growth of bushes. The ledges of this
mountain are full of interest for the mineralogist. Nearer to Lake
Laach are the Wahnenkopfe, the proud Veitskopf, and other cone-shaped
peaks. To these we direct our steps, and after a long tramp over the
rolling, cultivated plateau, we climb the wood-covered sides of the
great basin in whose depths the Laachersee lies. From the shore of
this lake rise the high volcanic peaks which tower above all the other
mountains.

[Illustration: LAKE GEMUNDEN.]

Tired from our climb through the ashes, which are heated by the sun,
we rest in the shade of a beech-wood, looking through the leaves into
the valley below us, with the old cloisters and the high Roman church
which the monks once built on the banks of the lake.

[Illustration: THE CRATER OF THE HERCHENBERGES.]

To the south of the lake rise other volcanoes, lying on the border of
the fertile Maifeld, which gradually descends to the valley of
Neuwied. Here, at the southern declivity of the group of volcanoes
which surrounds the Laachersee, remarkably large streams of lava were
ejected, covering the surface of the plateau with a thick layer. The
largest of these streams is that from the Niedermendig, which consists
of porous masses of nepheline lava. In the time of the Romans
millstones were made from this mass of rock, and the industry is
carried on now on a larger scale. It is a strange sight which meets
one's eyes when, after descending through narrow passages, he finds
himself in large, dark halls, from which the stone has been cut away,
and in which there are well-like shafts. The stones are raised through
these shafts by means of gigantic cranes and engines. Because of the
rapid evaporation of the water in the porous stone, these vaults are
always cool, winter and summer, and therefore they are used by several
brewers as storehouses for their beer, which owes its fame to these
underground halls.

[Illustration: THE MILLSTONE GALLERIES IN THE LAVA BEDS OF
NIEDERMENDIG.]

[Illustration: ON THE LAVA BEDS OF NIEDERMENDIG.]

Although the traces of former volcanic action are evident to the
student of nature, the Rhine with its mild climate and luxuriant
vegetation has covered many marks of the former chaotic state of the
land. Very little of this beauty is seen on the higher and,
therefore, more severe and barren mountains of the Western Eifel,
through which a volcanic fissure runs from the foot of the high
unhospitable Schneifel to Bertrich Baths, near the Moselle. From the
ridge of the Schneifel the traveler from the north has his first
glimpse of the still distant system of volcanoes. The most beautiful
part of this portion of the Eifel is in the neighborhood of Dann and
Manderscheid. Near the former rises a barren mountain with a long
ridge, on each side of which is a deep basin. These are sunken
craters, which now contain lakes, and near these two there is a third,
larger lake, the Maar von Schalkemehren, on the cultivated banks of
which we find a little village. The middle one, the Weinfelder Maar,
is the most interesting for geologists, for there seems to have been
scarcely any change here since the time of the eruption. On the other
side of the mountain lies the Gremundener Maar, the shores of which
are not barren and waste land, like those of the middle lake, but it
is surrounded by a dark wreath of woods whose tops are mirrored in the
crystal water. Farther to the south, near the villages of Gillenfeld
and Meerfeld, there are more lakes.

[Illustration: THE WEINFELDER LAKE ON THE MAUSEBERGE.]

[Illustration: EASTERN DECLIVITY OF MOSENBERGE NEAR MANDERSCHEID.]

The grandest picture of these ancient events is offered by the
Mosenberg, near Manderscheid, a mighty volcano which commands an
extensive view of the country. Two old craters lie on its double top,
one of which has fallen in, forming a short rocky valley, but the
other retains its original regular shape. In the circular funnel,
whose walls consist of masses of lava stone, rests a quiet, black
lake, that looks very mysterious to the wanderer. Only low juniper
bushes grow near the crater, bearing witness to the barrenness of the
land. From the foot of this mountain an immense stream of lava, as
wide and deep as a glacier, broke forth and flowed into the valley,
where the end of the stream is still to be seen in a high, steep wall
of rock.

[Illustration: THE "CHEESE GROTTO" AT BERTRICH BATHS.]

Similar sights are met all through this western volcanic region, and
we can consider the mineral and acid springs, which are very numerous,
as the last traces of the former disturbances, the products of the
decomposition of the volcanic stones buried in the earth. At Bertrich
Baths there are hot springs which were known to the Romans, for
numerous antiquities dating from their time have been excavated here.
Near these springs, at Bertrich, there is a "Cheese Grotto," which is
a break through the foot of a stream of lava, the stones of which have
not assumed the usual form of solidified columns, but have taken flat,
round shapes which resemble the forms of cheeses.

Now we have completed our wanderings, which required only a few days,
although they extended over this whole volcanic region, and which end
here on the Moselle.--_Ueber Land und Meer; Allgemeine Illustrirte
Zeitung._

       *       *       *       *       *

[NATURE.]



THE "METEOROLOGISKE INSTITUT" AT UPSALA, AND CLOUD
MEASUREMENTS.


The Meteorological Institute at Upsala has gained so much fame by the
investigations on clouds which have been carried on there during the
last few years, that a few notes on a recent visit to that
establishment will interest many readers.

The Institute is not a government establishment; it is entirely
maintained by the University of Upsala. The _personnel_ consists of
Prof. Hildebrandsson, as director; M. Ekholm and one other male
assistant, besides a lady who does the telegraphic and some of the
computing work.

The main building contains a commodious office, with a small library
and living apartments for the assistant. The principal instrument room
is a separate pavilion in the garden. Here is located Thiorell's
meteograph, which records automatically every quarter of an hour on a
slip of paper the height of the barometer, and the readings of the wet
and dry thermometers. Another instrument records the direction and
velocity of the wind.

This meteograph of Thiorell's is a very remarkable instrument. Every
fifteen minutes an apparatus is let loose which causes three wires to
descend from rest till they are stopped by reaching the level of the
mercury in the different tubes. When contact is made with the surface
of the mercuries, an electric current passes and stops the descent of
each wire at the proper time. The downward motion of the three wires
has actuated three wheels, each of which carries a series of types on
its edge, to denote successive readings of its own instrument. For
instance, the barometer-wheel carries successive numbers for every
five-hundredth of a millimeter--760.00, 760.05, 760.1, etc.; so that
when the motion is stopped the uppermost type gives in figures the
actual reading of the barometer. Then a subsidiary arrangement first
inks the types, then prints them on a slip of paper, and finally winds
the dipping wires up to zero again.

An ingenious apparatus prevents the electricity from sparking when
contact is made, so that there is no oxidation of the mercury. The
mechanism is singularly beautiful, and it is quite fascinating to
watch the self acting starting, stopping, inking, and printing
arrangements.

We could not but admire the exquisite order in which the whole
apparatus was maintained. The sides of the various glass tubes were as
clean as when they were new, and the surfaces of the mercuries were as
bright as looking glasses.

The university may well be proud that the instruments were entirely
constructed in Stockholm by the skillful mechanic Sorrenson, though
the cost is necessarily high. The meteograph, with the anemograph,
cost £600, but the great advantage is that no assistant is required to
sit up at night, and that all the figures wanted for climatic
constants are ready tabulated without any further labor.

But the Institute is most justly celebrated for the researches on the
motion and heights of clouds that have been carried on of late years
under the guidance of Prof. Hildebrandsson, with the assistance of
Messrs. Ekholm and Hagström.

The first studies were on the motion of clouds round cyclones and
anticyclones; but the results are now so well known that we need not
do more than mention them here.

Latterly the far more difficult subjects of cloud heights and cloud
velocities have been taken up, and as the methods employed and the
results that have been obtained are both novel and important, we will
describe what we saw there.

We should remark, in the first instance, that the motion of the higher
atmosphere is far better studied by clouds than by observations on
mountain tops, for on the latter the results are always more or less
influenced by the local effect of the mountain in deflecting the wind
and forcing it upward.

The instrument which they employ to measure the angles from which to
deduce the height of the clouds is a peculiar form of altazimuth that
was originally designed by Prof. Mohn, of Christiania, for measuring
the parallax of the aurora borealis. It resembles an astronomical
altazimuth, but instead of a telescope it carries an open tube without
any lenses. The portion corresponding to the object glass is formed by
thin cross wires: and that corresponding to the eye piece by a plate
of brass, pierced in the center by a small circular hole an eighth of
an inch in diameter. The tube of the telescope is replaced by a
lattice of brass work, so as to diminish, as far as possible, the
resistance of the wind. The vertical and horizontal circles are
divided decimally, and this much facilitates the reduction of the
readings.

The general appearance of the instrument is well shown in the figure,
which is engraved from a photograph I took of Mr. Ekholm while
actually engaged in talking through a telephone to M. Hagström as to
what portion of a cloud should be observed. The latticework tube, the
cross wires in place of an object glass, and the vertical circle are
very obvious, while the horizontal circle is so much end on that it
can scarcely be recognized except by the tangent screw which is seen
near the lower telephone.

Two such instruments are placed at the opposite extremities of a
suitable base. The new base at Upsala has a length of 4,272 feet; the
old one was about half the length. The result of the change has been
that the mean error of a single determination of the highest clouds
has been reduced from 9 to a little more than 3 per cent. of the
actual height. At the same time the difficulty of identifying a
particular spot on a low cloud is considerably increased. A wire is
laid between the two ends of the base, and each observer is provided
with two telephones--one for speaking, the other for listening. When
an observation is to be taken, the conversation goes on somewhat as
follows: First observer, who takes the lead--"Do you see a patch of
cloud away down west?" "Yes." "Can you make out a well-marked point on
the leading edge?" "Yes." "Well, then; now." At this signal both
observers put down their telephones, which have hitherto engaged both
their hands, begin to count fifteen seconds, and adjust their
instruments to the point of cloud agreed on. At the fifteenth second
they stop, read the various arcs, and the operation is complete.

But when the angles have been measured the height has to be
calculated, and also the horizontal and vertical velocities of the
cloud by combining the position and height at two successive
measurements at a short interval. There are already well-known
trigonometrical formulæ for calculating all these elements, if all the
observations are good; but at Upsala they do far more. Not only are
the observations first controlled by forming an equation to express
the condition that the two lines of sight from either end of the base
should meet in a point, if the angles have been correctly measured and
all bad sets rejected; but the mean errors of the rectangular
co-ordinates are calculated by the method of least squares.

[Illustration: N. EKHOLM MEASURING CLOUDS.

   This figure shows the peculiar ocular part of the altazimuth,
   with the vertical and horizontal circles. It also shows the
   telephonic arrangement.]

The whole of the calculations are combined into a series of formulæ
which are necessarily complicated, and even by using logarithms of
addition and subtraction and one or two subsidiary tables--such as for
log. sin²([theta]/2) specially constructed for this work--the
computation of each set of observations takes about twenty minutes.

Before we describe the principal results that have been attained, it
may be well to compare this with the other methods which have been
used to determine the height of clouds. A great deal of time and skill
and money have been spent at Kew in trying to perfect the photographic
method of measuring the height of clouds. Very elaborate cloud
cameras, or photo-nephoscopes, have been constructed, by means of
which photographs of a cloud were taken simultaneously from both ends
of a suitable base. The altitude and azimuth of the center of the
plate were read off by the graduated circles which were attached to
the cameras; and the angular measurements of any point of cloud on the
picture were calculated by proper measurements from the known center
of the photographic plate. When all this is done, the result ought to
be the same as if the altitude and azimuth of the point of the cloud
had been taken directly by an ordinary angle measuring instrument.

It might have been thought that there would be less chance of
mistaking the point of the cloud to be measured, if you had the
pictures from the two ends of the base to look at leisurely than if
you could only converse through a telephone with the observer at the
other end of the base. But in practice it is not so. No one who has
not seen such cloud photographs can realize the difficulty of
identifying any point of a low cloud when seen from two stations half
a mile or a whole mile apart, and for other reasons, which we will
give presently, the form of a cloud is not so well defined in a
photograph as it is to the naked eye.

At Kew an extremely ingenious sort of projector has been devised,
which gives graphically the required height of a cloud from two
simultaneous photographs at opposite ends of the same base, but it is
evident that this method is capable of none of the refinements which
have been applied to the Upsala measures, and that the rate of
vertical ascent or descent of a cloud could hardly be determined by
this method. But there is a far greater defect in the photographic
method, which at present no skill can surmount.

We saw that the altazimuth employed at Upsala had no lenses. The
meaning of this will be obvious to anyone who looks through an opera
glass at a faint cloud. He will probably see nothing for want of
contrast, and if anything of the nature of a telescope is employed,
only well-defined cloud outlines can be seen at all. The same loss of
light and contrast occurs with a photographic lens, and many clouds
that can be seen in the sky are invisible on the ground glass of the
camera. Cirrus and cirro-stratus--the very clouds we want most to
observe--are always thin and indefined as regards their form and
contrast against the rest of the sky, so that this defect of the
method is the more unfortunate.

But even when the image of a cloud is visible on the focusing glass,
it does not follow that any image will be seen in the picture. In
practice, thin, high white clouds against a blue sky can rarely be
taken at all, or only under exceptional circumstances of illumination.
The reason seems to be that there is very little light reflected at
all from a thin wisp of cirrus, and what there is must pass through an
atmosphere always more or less charged with floating particles of ice
or water, besides earthy dust of all kinds. The light which is
scattered and diffused by all these small particles is also
concentrated on the sensitive plate by the lens, and the resulting
negative shows a uniform dark surface for the sky without any trace of
the cloud. What image there might have been is buried in photographic
fog.

In order to compare the two methods of measuring clouds, I went out
one day last December at Upsala with Messrs. Ekholm and Hagström when
they were measuring the height of some clouds. It was a dull
afternoon, a low foggy stratus was driving rapidly across the sky at a
low level, and through the general misty gloom of a northern winter
day we could just make out some striated stripes of strato-cirrus--low
cirro-stratus--between the openings in the lower cloud layer. The
camera and lens that I use habitually for photographing cloud
forms--not their angular height--was planted a few feet from the
altazimuth with which M. Ekholm was observing, and while he was
measuring the necessary angles I took a picture of the clouds. As
might have been expected under the circumstances, the low dark cloud
came out quite well, but there was not the faintest trace of the
strato-cirrus on the negative. MM. Ekholm and Hagström, however,
succeeded in measuring both layers of cloud, and found that the low
stratus was floating at an altitude of about 2,000 feet high, while
the upper strato-cirrus was driving from S. 57° W. at an altitude of
19,653 feet, with a horizontal velocity of 81 and a downward velocity
of 7.2 feet per second. This is a remarkable result, and shows
conclusively the superiority of the altazimuth to the photographic
method of measuring the heights of clouds.

Whenever opportunity occurs, measures of clouds are taken three times
a day at Upsala, and it may be well to glance at the principal results
that have been obtained.

The greatest height of any cloud which has yet been satisfactorily
measured is only 43,800 feet, which is rather less than has usually
been supposed; but the highest velocity, 112 miles an hour with a
cloud at 28,000 feet, is greater than would have been expected. It may
be interesting to note that the isobars when this high velocity was
reported were nearly straight, and sloping toward the northwest.

The most important result which has been obtained from all the
numerous measures that have been made is the fact clouds are not
distributed promiscuously at all heights in the air, but that they
have, on the contrary, a most decided tendency to form at three
definite levels. The mean summer level of these three stories of
clouds at Upsala has been found to be as follows: low clouds--stratus,
cumulus, cumulo-nimbus, 2,000-6,000 feet; middle clouds--strato-cirrus
and cumulo-cirrus, 12,900-15,000 feet; high clouds--cirrus,
cirro-stratus, cirro-cumulus, 20,000-27,000 feet.

It would be premature at present to speculate on the physical
significance of this fact, but we find the same definite layers of
clouds in the tropics as in these high latitudes, and no future cloud
nomenclature or cloud observations will be satisfactory which do not
take the idea of these levels into account.

But the refinements of the methods employed allow the diurnal
variations both of velocity and altitude to be successfully measured.
The velocity observations confirm the results that have been obtained
from mountain stations--that, though the general travel of the middle
and higher clouds is much greater than that of the surface winds, the
diurnal variation of speed at those levels is the reverse of what
occurs near the ground. The greatest velocity on the earth's surface
is usually about 2 p.m.; whereas the lowest rate of the upper currents
is about midday.

The diurnal variation of height is remarkable, for they find at Upsala
that the mean height of all varieties of clouds rises in the course of
the day, and is higher between 6 and 8 in the evening than either in
the early morning or at midday.

Such are the principal results that have been obtained at Upsala, and
no doubt they surpass any previous work that has been done on the
subject. But whenever we see good results it is worth while to pause a
moment to consider the conditions under which the work has been
developed, and the nature and nurture of the men by whom the research
has been conducted. Scientific research is a delicate plant, that is
easily nipped in the bud, but which, under certain surroundings and in
a suitable moral atmosphere, develops a vigorous growth.

The Meteorological Institute of Upsala is an offshoot of the
Astronomical Observatory of the university; and a university, if
properly directed, can develop research which promises no immediate
reward in a manner that no other body can approach.

If you want any quantity of a particular kind of calculation, or to
carry on the routine of any existing work in an observatory, it is
easy to go into the labor market and engage a sufficient number of
accurate computers, either by time or piece work, or to find an
assistant who will make observations with the regularity of clockwork.

But original research requires not only special natural aptitudes and
enthusiasm to begin with, but even then will not flourish unless
developed by encouragement and the identification of the worker with
his work. It is rarely, except in universities, that men can be found
for the highest original research. For there only are young students
encouraged to come forward and interest themselves in any work for
which they seem to have special aptitude.

Now, this is the history of the Upsala work. Prof. Hildebrandsson was
attached as a young man to the meteorological department of the
astronomical observatory, and when the study of stars and weather were
separated, he obtained the second post in the new Meteorological
Institute. From this his great abilities soon raised him to the
directorship, which he now holds with so much credit to the
university. M. Ekholm, a much younger man, has been brought up in the
same manner. First as a student he showed such aptitude for the work
as to be engaged as assistant; and now, as the actual observation and
reduction of the cloud work is done by him and M. Hagström, the
results are published under their names, so that they are thoroughly
identified with the work.

Upsala is the center of the intellectual life of Sweden, and there,
rather than at Stockholm, could men be found to carry out original
research. It redounds to the credit of the university that it has so
steadily supported Prof. Hildebrandsson, and that he in his turn has
utilized the social and educational system by which he is surrounded
to bring up assistants who can co-operate with him in a great work
that brings credit both to himself, to themselves, and to the
institute which they all represent.

RALPH ABERCROMBY.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Continued from SUPPLEMENT, No. 610, page 9744.]

[JOURNAL OF THE SOCIETY OF CHEMICAL INDUSTRY.]



NOTES OF A RECENT VISIT TO SOME OF THE PETROLEUM-PRODUCING
TERRITORIES OF THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA.

BY BOVERTON REDWOOD, F.I.C., F.C.S.


CANADIAN PETROLEUM.

When I visited Canada in 1877-78, the refining of petroleum was
principally conducted in the city of London, Ontario. At the present
time Petrolia, Ontario, is the chief seat of the industry, and it was
accordingly to this city that we made our way. Here we were treated
with the greatest kindness and hospitality by Mr. John D. Noble,
vice-president of the Petrolia Crude Oil and Tanking Co., and his
brother, Mr. R. D'Oyley Noble, and were enabled in the short time at
our disposal to visit typical portions of the producing territory and
some of the principal refineries.

The development of the Canadian petroleum industry may be said to date
from 1857, when a well dug for water was found to yield a considerable
quantity of petroleum; but long previously, indeed from the time of
the earliest settlements in the county of Lamberton, in the western
part of the province of Ontario, petroleum was known to exist in
Canada. In 1862 productive flowing wells were drilled at Oil Springs,
but these wells, which were comparatively shallow, quickly became
exhausted, and the territory was deserted on the discovery in 1865 of
oil at Petrolia, seven miles to the northward, and about 16 miles
southwest of the outlet of Lake Huron. Recently the Oil Springs wells
have been drilled deeper, and are now producing 10,000 to 12,000
barrels (of 42 American gallons) per month. Petroleum has also been
found at Bothwell, 35 miles from Oil Springs, but this district has
ceased to yield. Quite recently a new territory has been discovered at
Euphemia, 17 miles from Bothwell, where, at the time of our visit,
there were four wells producing collectively 70 barrels per day. This
territory is by some regarded as part of the Bothwell field.

The present producing oil belt extends from Petrolia in a
northwesterly direction, to the township of Sarnia, and in a
southeasterly direction to Oil Springs, but in the latter direction
there is a break of about four and a quarter miles, commencing at a
point about two miles from Petrolia. At Oil Springs there appears to
be a pool about two miles square. The extension of the belt then
continues in the same direction, with another break of about nine
miles, to the new oil field of Euphemia, the average width of the oil
belt being about two miles. In all, about 15,000 wells are believed to
have been drilled in the Canadian oil fields, and of these about 2,500
are now producing, the average yield being about three quarters of a
barrel per well per day. The aggregate production is probably about
700,000 barrels per annum, the greater part of which is obtained in
the Petrolia district, and the stocks were at the time of our visit
stated to amount to from 400,000 to 450,000 barrels.

In the Canadian oil fields the drilling contractor usually employs his
own derrick, engine, boiler, and tools, furnishes wood and water,
cases the well, and fixes the pump; the well owner providing the
casing and pump, and subsequently erecting the permanent derrick.

The wells in the Oil Springs field were formerly from 200 ft. to 300
ft. in depth, but the oil stratum then worked became waterlogged, and
the wells are now sunk to a depth of about 375 ft., and are cased to a
depth of about 275 ft. to shut off the water. The contract price for
drilling a 4-5/8 in. hole to a depth of about 375 ft. under the
conditions mentioned is 150 dols. (£30), and the time occupied in
drilling is usually about a week when the work is continued night and
day. The wells in the Petrolia field have a depth of 480 ft., the
contract price, including the cost of 100 ft. of wooden conductor,
being 175 dols. (£35), and the time occupied in drilling being from
six to twelve days. Pole tools are used in drilling, the poles being
of white ash, 37 ft. in length. The derrick is about 48 ft. in height.
An auger some 4 ft. in length, and about a foot in diameter, is used
to bore through the earth to the bed rock, the auger being rotated by
horse power.

The drilling tools commonly consist of a bit, 2½ ft. in length by
4-5/8 in. in diameter, weighing about 60 lb.; a sinker bar, into which
the bit is screwed, 30 ft. in length by 3 in. in diameter, weighing
about 1,040 lb.; and the jars, inserted between the sinker bar and the
poles about 6 ft. in length, and weighing 150 lb. The tools are
suspended by a chain, which passes three times round the end of the
walking beam and thence to the windlass, with ratchet wheel fixed on
the walking beam, by means of which the tools are gradually lowered as
the drilling proceeds. The cable is thus only employed in raising the
tools from the well and lowering them into it.

The sand pump or bailer is frequently as much as 37 ft. in length, and
is about 4 in. in diameter. The casing (4-5/8 in diameter) costs about
45 cents (1s. 10½d.) per foot, and the 1¼ in. pump, with piping, costs
from 65 dols. (£13) to 85 dols. (£17), according to the length of
pipe required. An ordinary square frame derrick costs, with mud sill,
from 22 dols. (£4 8s.) to 27 dols. (£5 8s.), and the walking beam
about 8 dols. (£1 12s.) In many cases, however, a three-pole derrick,
which can be erected at an expense of about 10 dols. (£2), is
employed. A 100 barrel wooden tank costs, erected, 50 dols. (£10).


THE CANADIAN TORPEDO.

The wells are torpedoed on completion with from 8 to 10 quarts of
nitroglycerine, at a cost of 4 dols. (16s.) per quart. The torpedoes
employed in the Canadian oil field are much smaller than those used
for a similar purpose in the United States, the tin shell being only 6
ft. in length by 3 in. in diameter. We were enabled to witness the
operation of torpedoing a well, and the following particulars, based
on notes taken at the time, may be of interest: The torpedo case,
which was furnished with a tube or "anchor" at the lower end, 8 ft. in
length, was placed in the mouth of the well and suspended so that its
upper end was level with the surface of the ground. Eight quarts of
nitroglycerine, which was in a tin can, was then poured into the
torpedo case, and the torpedo was carefully lowered into the well,
which contained at the time about 250 ft. of water, until the end of
the anchor rested on the bottom of the well. A traveling primer or
"go-devil squib" was then prepared as follows: A tin cone, 14 in. in
length by 2 in. in diameter at the open end, was partially filled with
sand to give it the necessary weight. A piece of double tape fuse, 2
ft. long, was inserted into a Nobel's treble detonator, and over the
detonator and a portion of the fuse a perforated tin tube or sheath
was passed. This tube was then inserted through a hole in a strip of
tin fixed across the mouth of the conical cup into the sand, so that
the detonator was embedded. The sand was then saturated with
nitroglycerine, the fuse lighted, and the primer dropped into the
well. In about 45 seconds there was a perceptible tremor of the
ground, immediately followed by a slight sound of the explosion. After
an interval of a second or two there was a gurgling noise, and a
magnificent black fountain shot up twice as high as the derrick, upon
which all the spectators ran for shelter from the impending shower of
oil and water. The well not being a flowing one, the outrush was only
of momentary duration, and within a few minutes the drillers were at
work removing from the well, by means of the sand pump, the fragments
of rock which had been detached by the explosion. On the table are
specimens of this rock, which I obtained at the time.

The maximum yield per well is ten barrels per day, and the minimum
yield for which it is considered profitable to pump is a quarter of a
barrel per day. The yield being in some cases so small, it is usual to
pump a number of wells through the agency of one engine, the various
pumps being connected with the motor by means of wooden rods. In one
instance I saw as many as eighty wells being thus pumped from one
center. The motive power was a 70 h.p. engine, which communicated
motion, similar to that of the balance wheel of a watch, to a large
horizontal wheel. From this wheel six main rod lines radiated, the
length of stroke of the main lines being 16 in., and the rate of
movement 32 strokes per minute. Some of the wells being pumped from
this center were from one-half to three-quarters of a mile distant,
and altogether about eight miles of rods were employed in the pumping
of the eighty wells.

The pipe line system in Canada has not been fully developed, and
accordingly the well owner has to convey his oil by road to the
nearest receiving station. Thus from the Euphemia oil field the oil
has to be "teamed" 17 miles, to Bothwell. For the conveyance of the
oil by road a long and slightly conical wooden tank or barrel, resting
horizontally on a wagon, is employed. These vessels hold from eight to
ten barrels of oil. The Petrolia Crude Oil and Tanking Company is the
principal transporting and storing company. The storage charge is one
cent (½d.) per barrel per month, and the delivery charge two cents
per barrel. The petroleum produced in the Oil Springs field is stored
separately from that obtained in the Petrolia field.

The storage takes place for the most part in large underground tanks
excavated in the retentive clay. These remarkable tanks are often as
much as 30 ft. in diameter by 60 ft. in depth, and hold from 5,000 to
8,000 barrels. In the construction of the tanks the alluvial soil, of
which there is about 18 ft. or 20 ft. above the clay, is curbed with
wood and thoroughly puddled with clay. On the completion of the
excavation, the entire vertical surface is then lined with rings of
pine wood, so that the upper part down to the solid clay is doubly
lined. The bottom is not lined. The roof of the tank is of wood,
covered with clay. The cost of such a tank is about 22 cents (11d.)
per barrel, or 1,760 dols. (£363) for an 8,000 barrel tank, and the
time occupied in making such a tank is about six weeks.

The crude petroleum from the Petrolia field usually has a specific
gravity ranging from 0.859 to 0.877, while the specific gravity of the
petroleum from the Oil Springs field ranges from 0.844 to 0.854.

The oil occurs in the corniferous limestone, and buildings constructed
of this stone frequently exude petroleum in hot weather.

Canadian crude petroleum is of a black color, and possesses a very
disagreeable odor, due to the presence of sulphur compounds. These
characteristics are shown by the samples on the table, for some of
which I am indebted to Mr. James Kerr, secretary of the Petrolia Oil
Exchange.

The stills used in the process of refining the crude oil are
horizontal two-flued cylinders, 30 ft. in length by 10 ft. in
diameter, provided with six 2 in. vapor pipes. The charge is 260
barrels, and the following is an outline of the method of working.
Assuming the still to be charged on Monday morning, heating is
commenced about 7 A.M., and the naphtha begins to come over about 8
A.M. Of this product about six barrels is obtained in the case of
Petrolia crude, or 7½ barrels in the case of Oil Springs crude. The
distillation of the naphtha takes from 2 to 3 hours, say till 10:30
A.M. The heat is then increased, and the distillation of the kerosene
commences about noon, and continues till about 10 P.M. Of the kerosene
distillate about 80 barrels are obtained. The first portion of the
kerosene distillate is usually collected separately, is steamed to
drive off the more volatile hydrocarbons, and is then mixed with the
remainder of the kerosene distillate. The product which then commences
to distill is known as tailings. This is collected separately and is
redistilled. The distillation of the tailings continues till about 5
A.M. on Wednesday, by which time about 80 barrels has been obtained.
Steam is then passed into the still through a perforated pipe
extending to the bottom, and about 21 barrels of "gas oil" is
distilled over. The additional quantity of kerosene obtained on
redistilling the tailings brings up the total yield of this product to
about 42 per cent. of the crude oil. The gas oil is sold for the
manufacture of illuminating gas. The residue is distilled for
lubricating oils and paraffin.

The agitator in which the kerosene distillate is treated commonly
takes a charge of 465 barrels. To this quantity of distillate two
carboys of oil of vitriol is added, and the oil and acid are agitated
together for 20 minutes. The tarry acid having been allowed to settle
is drawn off, and seven carboys more of acid is added. Agitation
having been effected for 30 or 40 minutes, the tarry acid is removed
as before. Another similar treatment with seven carboys of acid
follows, and occasionally a fourth addition of acid is made. The oil
is next allowed to remain at rest for an hour, any acid which settles
out being drawn off, and cold (or, in winter, slightly warmed) water
is allowed to pass down through the oil in fine streams, this
treatment being continued, without agitation of the oil, for half an
hour, or until the dark color which the oil assumed on treatment with
acid is removed. The water is then drawn off, 10 barrels of solution
of caustic soda (sp. gr. 15° B.) is added, and agitation conducted for
15 minutes. The caustic soda solution having been drawn off, 30
barrels of a solution of litharge in caustic soda is added. This
solution is made by dissolving caustic soda in water to a density of
18° B. and then adding the litharge. Agitation with this solution is
continued for about six hours, or until the oil is thoroughly
deodorized. About 100 lb. of sublimed sulphur is then added, and the
agitation is continued for another two hours. The oil having been
allowed to settle all night, the litharge solution is drawn off, and
the oil run into a shallow tank or "bleacher," where it is exposed to
the light to improve its color, and is, if necessary, steamed to drive
off the lighter hydrocarbons and raise the flashing point to the legal
minimum of 95° F. To raise the flashing point from 73° F. to 95° F.
(Abel test) is stated to involve in practice a loss of 10 per cent.,
the burning quality of the oil being at the same time seriously
impaired, and upon this ground the Ontario refiners in 1886 petitioned
for a reduction of the test standard.

The average percentage yield of the various products is given in the
following table:

    Naphtha.                   5
    Kerosene.                 42
    Gas oil.                   8
    Tar.                      25
    Coke.                     10
    Loss (including water).   10
                             ---
                             100

There are a dozen petroleum refineries in Canada, and the annual
outturn of kerosene is about 200,000 barrels of 45 imperial gallons
per annum. The total consumption of kerosene in Canada is about
300,000 barrels, one-third of which is manufactured in the United
States. The United States oil is subject to a duty of 40 cents on the
package and 7-1/5 cents per imperial gallon on the contents, besides
which there is an inspection fee of 30 cents per package. Of
lubricating oils the outturn is from 75,000 to 100,000 barrels per
annum.

The quality of Canadian kerosene has been greatly improved of late
years, but notwithstanding the elaborate process of refining, the oil,
though thoroughly deodorized and of good color, contains sulphur, and
of course evolves sulphur compounds in its combustion.

The rules of the Petrolia Oil Exchange provide that refined kerosene
shall be of the odor "locally known as inoffensive," and shall
"absolutely stand the test of oxide of lead in a strong solution of
caustic soda without change of color."

The "burning percentage" in the case of "Extra Refined Oil," "Water
White" in color, and of specific gravity not exceeding 0.800, is
required to be not less than 70; in the case of "No. 1 Refined Oil,"
"Prime White" in color, not less than 60; and in the case of "No. 2
Refined Oil," "Standard White" in color, to be not less than 55.

The "burning percentage" is determined by the use of a lamp thus
described: "The bowl of the lamp is cylindrical, 4 in. in diameter and
2¾ in. deep, with a neck placed thereon of such a height that the top
of the wick tube is 3 in. above the bowl. A sun-hinge burner is used,
taking a wick 7/8 in. wide and 1/8 in. thick, and a chimney about 8
in. long." The test is conducted as follows: "The lamp bowl is filled
with the oil and weighed, then lighted and turned up full flame just
below the smoking point, and burned without interference till 12 oz.
of the oil is consumed. The quantity consumed during the first hour
and the last hour is noted." The ratio of the two quantities is the
measure of the burning quality, and the percentage that the latter
quantity is of the former is the "burning percentage" referred to.

       *       *       *       *       *



TREES FROM A SANITARY ASPECT.

BY CHARLES ROBERTS, F.R.C.S., ETC.


As this is the usual time of the year for planting, pruning, and
removing forest trees and shrubs, it is a fit time for considering the
influence which trees exert on the sanitary surroundings of dwelling
places. The recent parliamentary report on forestry shows that trees
are now of little commercial value in this country. And we may
conclude, therefore, that they are chiefly grown for picturesque
effect, and for the shelter from the sun and winds which they afford.

The relation of forests to rainfall has been studied by
meteorologists, but little attention has been given by medical
climatologists to the share which trees take in determining local
variations of climate and the sanitary condition of dwellings,
notwithstanding they play as important a part as differences of soil,
of which so much is said and written nowadays. This remark does not
apply to large towns, where trees grow with difficulty and are
comparatively few in number, and where they afford a grateful relief
to the eye, shade from the sun, and to a very slight extent temper the
too dry atmosphere, but to suburban and country districts, where it is
the custom to bury houses in masses of foliage--a condition of things
which is deemed the chief attraction, and often a necessary
accompaniment, of country life.

Trees of all kinds exercise a cooling and moistening influence on the
atmosphere and soil in which they grow. The extent of these conditions
depends on the number of trees and whether they stand alone, in belts,
or in forests; on their size, whether tall trees with branchless stems
or thickets of underwood: on their species, whether deciduous or
evergreen; and on the season of the year. The cooling of the air and
soil is due to the evaporation of water by the leaves, which is
chiefly drawn from the subsoil--not the surface--by the roots, and to
the exclusion of the sun's rays from the ground, trees themselves
being little susceptible of receiving and radiating heat. The moisture
of the atmosphere and ground about trees is due to the collection by
the leaves and branches of a considerable portion of the rainfall, the
condensation of aqueous vapor by the leaves, and the obstruction
offered by the foliage to evaporation from the ground beneath the
trees.

The experiments of M. Fautrat show that the leafage of leaf bearing
trees intercepts one-third, and that of pine trees the half, of the
rainfall, which is afterward returned to the atmosphere by
evaporation. On the other hand, these same leaves and branches
restrain the evaporation of the water which reaches the ground, and
that evaporation is nearly four times less under a mass of foliage in
a forest, and two and one-third times under a mass of pines, than in
the open. Moreover, trees prevent the circulation of the air by
lateral wind currents and produce stagnation. Hence, as Mr. E.J.
Symons has truly observed, "a lovely spot embowered in trees and
embraced by hills is usually characterized by a damp, misty, cold, and
stagnant atmosphere," a condition of climate which is obviously
unfavorable to good health and especially favorable to the development
of consumption and rheumatism, our two most prevalent diseases.

Now, if we examine the surroundings of many of our suburban villas and
country houses of the better sort, we shall find them embowered in
trees, and subject to all the insanitary climatic conditions just
mentioned. The custom almost everywhere prevails of blocking out of
view other houses, roads, etc., by belts of trees, often planted on
raised mounds of earth, and surrounded by high close walls or palings,
from a foolish ambition of seeming to live "quite in the country."

This is a most unwise proceeding from a sanitary point of view, and
should be protested against as strongly by medical men as defective
drainage and bad water supply. Many houses stand under the very drip
and shadow of trees, and "the grounds" of others are inclosed by dense
belts of trees and shrubs, which convert them into veritable
reservoirs of damp, stagnant air, often loaded with the effluvia of
decaying leaves and other garden refuse, a condition of atmosphere
very injurious to health, and answerable for much of the neuralgia of
a malarious kind, of which we have heard so much lately. A very slight
belt of trees suffices to obstruct the lateral circulation of the air,
and if the sun be also excluded the natural upward currents are also
prevented.

As far back as 1695 Lancisi recognized the influence of slight belts
of trees in preventing the spread of malaria in Rome, and the cold,
damp, stagnant air of spaces inclosed by trees is easily demonstrated
by the wet and dry bulb thermometer, or even by the ordinary
sensations of the body. A dry garden, on gravel, of three acres in
extent in Surrey, surrounded by trees, is generally three or four
degrees colder than the open common beyond the trees; and a large pond
in a pine wood twenty miles from London afforded skating for ninety
consecutive days in the winter of 1885-86, while during the greater
part of the time the lakes in the London parks were free from ice.

The speculative builder has more sins to answer for than the faulty
construction of houses. He generally begins his operations by cutting
down all the fine old trees which occupy the ground, and which from
their size and isolation are more beautiful than young ones and are
little likely to be injurious to health, and ends them by raising
mounds and sticking into them dense belts of quick-growing trees like
poplars to hide as speedily as possible the desolation of bricks and
mortar he has created. It is this senseless outdoor work of the
builder and his nurseryman which stands most in need of revision from
time to time in suburban residences, but which rarely receives it from
a silly notion, amounting to tree worship, which prohibits the cutting
down of trees, no matter how injudicious may have been the planting of
them in the first instance from a sanitary or picturesque point of
view.

The following hints for planting and removing trees may be useful to
those persons who have given little attention to the subject. A tree
should not stand so near a house that, if it were to fall, it would
fall on the house; or, in other words, the root should be as far from
the house as the height of the tree. Belts of trees may be planted on
the north and east aspects of houses, but on the east side the trees
should not be so near, nor so high, as to keep the morning sun from
the bedroom windows in the shorter days of the year. On the south and
west aspects of houses isolated trees only should be permitted, so
that there may be free access of the sunshine and the west winds to
the house and grounds.

High walls and palings on these aspects are also objectionable, and
should be replaced by fences, or better still open palings, especially
about houses which are occupied during the fall of the leaf, and in
the winter. Trees for planting near houses should be chosen in the
following order: Conifers, birch, acacia, beech, oak, elm, lime, and
poplar. Pine trees are the best of all trees for this purpose, as they
collect the greatest amount of rainfall and permit the freest
evaporation from the ground, while their branchless stems offer the
least resistance to the lateral circulation of the air.

Acacias, oaks, and birches are late to burst into leaf, and therefore
allow the ground to be warmed by the sun's rays in the early spring.
The elm, lime, and chestnut are the least desirable kinds of trees to
plant near houses, although they are the most common. They come into
leaf early and cast their leaves early, so that they exclude the
spring sun and do not afford much shade in the hot autumn months,
when it is most required. The lime and the elm are, however, beautiful
trees, and will doubtless on this account often be tolerated nearer
houses than is desirable from a purely sanitary point of view.

Trees are often useful guides to the selection of residences. Numerous
trees with rich foliage and a rank undergrowth of ferns or moss
indicate a damp, stagnant atmosphere; while abundance of flowers and
fruit imply a dry, sunny climate. Children will be healthiest where
most flowers grow, and old people will live longest where our common
fruits ripen best, as these conditions of vegetation indicate a
climate which is least favorable to bronchitis and rheumatism. Pines
and their companions, the birches, indicate a dry, rocky, sandy, or
gravel soil; beeches, a dryish, chalky, or gravel soil; elms and
limes, a rich and somewhat damp soil; oaks and ashes, a heavy clay
soil; and poplars and willows, a low, damp, or marshy soil. Many of
these are found growing together, and it is only when one species
predominates in number and vigor that it is truly characteristic of
the soil and that portion of the atmosphere in connection with it.

Curzon Street, Mayfair, W.--_Lancet._

       *       *       *       *       *


SOLIDIFICATION BY PRESSURE.

M. Amagat has succeeded in solidifying various liquids, by compressing
them in cylinders of bronze and steel. He has also photographed the
crystals after crystallization, by means of a ray of electric light
traversing the interior of the vessel by glass cones serving as panes.
The stages of crystallization can be observed in this way with
chloride of carbon, and it is seen that the process varies with the
rapidity with which the pressure is produced. If rapidly, a sudden
circlet of crystals gathers round the edge of the luminous field, and
grows to the center. The pressure being continued, the field becomes
obscure, then transparent. As the pressure is diminished the reverse
takes place, and the liquid state is reproduced. M. Amagat finds that
chloride of carbon solidifies at 19.5° Cent., under a pressure of 210
atmospheres. At 22° Cent., benzine crystallizes with a pressure of
about 900 atmospheres.

       *       *       *       *       *


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