Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 11.djvu/657

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Mental Disease in Animals.—The pathology of mind in the lower animals, and more especially in domestic animals, is a subject which, singularly enough, has hitherto attracted very little attention, though it is one that ought to possess the highest interest to man. Dr. W. Lauder Lindsay, who for a few years past has devoted himself to the study of mental phenomena as exhibited in the animal creation inferior to man, contributes to the Journal of Mental Science the results of his observations upon the mental pathology of animals, from which it appears that in them insanity is virtually the same as in man. He notes, however, certain peculiarities in the case of the lower animals, the most important of which is the facility with which artificial insanity may be produced in them, either by ill-usage or by brain or blood poisoning; hence the whole course of insanity may be very conveniently studied in animals. This unworked field of comparative psychology presents to the ambitious young physician the opportunity not only of earning distinction, but also of adding to human knowledge, and thereby to human as well as animal happiness and well-being. "Let me," writes Dr. Lauder Lindsay, "commend the experimental and scientific study of the pathology of mind in the lower animals to those capable youths who at present fritter away their time, temper, and opportunities, on subjects both trite and trivial; who expend their ingenuity in improving upon Nature by drawing hard and fast lines of demarkation where she draws none; who discover in the last fashionable drug, or mode of drugging, a panacea for all the ills of the insane; who delight in barren statistics that have already been tabulated a thousand times, with results of no practical value."

 

Archæology.—The Lapham Archæological Society of Wisconsin is the name of an organization formed and located at Milwaukee, Wisconsin, for the purpose of instituting researches into the antiquities of that State. It proposes to survey and register the discovery of ancient mounds; collect and preserve the relics found; and to publish from time to time such information concerning the results of its labors as will lead to a better knowledge of the origin and character of the prehistoric peoples of the region of the Great Lakes and the Mississippi Valley. It has long been known that Wisconsin is particularly rich in remains of the mound-builders. In 1855 Dr. J. A. Lapham, after whom this society is fitly named, published, as one of the Smithsonian contributions, a quarto volume describing and figuring such as had then been observed. They have been discovered in great numbers since, and there is ample room for vigorous work in exploring and describing them before they disappear under the denuding operations of the plough and the harrow. They are so widely scattered and so small in size that their preservation is quite out of the question after the soil begins to be cultivated. It is to be hoped that the society will be able to push its labors successfully, and that its action may excite a spirit of emulation in other localities.

 


NOTES.

A destructive tornado visited the vicinity of Elkhart, Indiana, on the afternoon of July 2d. It completely destroyed several buildings, and unroofed others, uprooted whole orchards, and distributed trees and rubbish over acres of crops. The progress of the storm was from west to east; but the buildings and trees all fell toward the south, as if they had been taken up by the northern portion of the whirling column, and thrown into the centre, which seemed south of the principal track of devastation. No one was killed outright, but one of the injured has since died. A correspondent suggests one fact connected with the work of this tornado, which he thinks seems to indicate the presence of a large amount of electricity, if, indeed, the manifestation was not chiefly electric. All the leaves on the trees, all the corn, grain, and other green things within the path of the hurricane, were seared and shriveled, as if by great heat.

It has been found by Müller, of the Berlin Chemical Society, that steam at ordinary pressure, when sent into saline solutions, raises their temperature considerably above its own. A solution of common salt, so concentrated as to have its boiling-point 127°, may be raised to 125°, by sending into it steam at 100°. The more concentrated the solution the higher the rise.

The power of resistance to the action of sea-water possessed by copper and phos-