Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 7.djvu/398
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.
The Sanitarian publishes a table showing the death-rate of various cities in the United States for the month of March, from which it appears that the highest death-rate (Nashville) was 37.69 per thousand per annum, and the lowest (St. Louis) 13.37. Other cities showed the following death-rates: New York, 30.'25; Philadelphia, 2(3.30; Brooklyn, 23.54; Chicago, 15.73; Boston, 22.67; New Orleans, 26.72; Washington, 33.36; Richmond, 26.40; Charleston, 34.50; New Haven, 19.80.
A party of Englishmen, Drs. Freeland and Nicholls, Captain Gardner, and Mr. Watt, while exploring the steep and forest-covered mountain behind the town of Rosseau, in the republic of Dominica, came upon a boiling lake about 2,500 feet above the sea-level, and two miles in circumference. When the wind cleared away for a moment the clouds of sulphurous steam with which the lake was covered, a mound of water was seen ten feet higher than the general level, and caused by ebullition. The margin of the lake consists of beds of sulphur; at the outlet is a waterfall of great height.
The twenty-fourth meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science will be held at Detroit, Mich., commencing on Wednesday, August 11th. The Permanent Secretary calls special attention to the meeting of the Entomological Club. It is proposed to form a subsection of Anthropology at the coming meeting of the Association. Officers of this year's meeting: President, Prof J. E. Hilgard; Vice-President, Section A, Prof H. A. Newton; Section B, Prof. J. W. Dawson; chairman, Chemical Subsection, Prof S. W. Johnson.
M. Le Verrier, Director of the Paris Observatory, transmits twice daily to the principal ports of France forecasts of the probable weather for the ensuing twelve hours. The present system does not include signals to give warning of storms. The telegrams are posted up in some public place.
It is suggested to form an artificial isthmus between France and England, leaving a narrow space in the centre for the passage of ships. The expense would not be much greater than in boring a tunnel, and the advantages in some respects greater.
A newspaper paragraph gives this instance of community of disease in man and animals. A large Newfoundland dog, belonging to a Mr. Wallace, of Upton, Mass., contracted measles from the children of a Mr. Walker, and died of the disease. The dog exhibited all the symptoms of measles as seen in human beings, and under medical treatment was convalescing, when he ran out in the snow, was chilled, and died.
A club has lately been formed in this country for the circulation among its members, by way of the United States mails, of microscopic objects. Applications for membership should be made to the secretary of the club. Rev. A. B. Hervey, 10 North Second Street, Troy, N. Y. Those only are eligible as members who are accustomed to work with the microscope, and who can contribute to the usefulness of the club by sending good objects for examination.
At the Louisville meeting of the American Medical Association, S. D. Gross, M.D., of Philadelphia, avowed himself an advocate of bloodletting for many diseases, especially those of an inflammatory character. He predicted that phlebotomy would again come to be recognized as a therapeutic agent, but that it would not be practised indiscriminately.
Pettenkofer has shown that a cubic foot of soil contains one-third of a cubic foot of air. Now, according to Boussingault, the amount of carbonic acid in this air is much more than that in the atmosphere. He found that in a field recently manured it amounted to 221 parts in 10.000 of air; in a vineyard, 96; forest-land, 86; loamy subsoil, 82; sandy subsoil, 24; garden-soil, 36.
The title of the society known as the New York Lyceum of Natural History has been changed. It will henceforward be known as the New York Academy of Sciences.
A correspondent of the Department of Agriculture writes that a decoction of tansy is always effectual in killing bots. He gives the tansy in the morning to a horse infested with bots, and in the evening a dose of salts; the bots die, and pass out with the excretions.
Black silks are very commonly "weighted" with foreign substances to the amount of 100, 200, and 300 per cent. This increase in weight is caused by treatment with salts of iron and astringents, salts of tin and cyanides. In fact, what is sold as silk is a mere agglomeration of heterogeneous matters, held temporarily together by a small portion of silk.
It is stated by Paul Perny, formerly a pro-vicar apostolic in China, that the Emperor Kien-Lung, who lived upward of a century ago, drew up the plan of a general encyclopædia of human knowledge, the publication of which still goes on. Nearly 100,000 volumes of this work have appeared, and there remain 60,000 volumes to be published! M. Perny further states that the Chinese have encyclopædias of more than 300 volumes on agriculture, horticulture, pisciculture, etc.