Page:Sawdust & Spangles.djvu/287

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249
NEW YORK AQUARIUM

quainted with the leading scientists and literary people of the day. I know of no institution of the kind that has been opened to the public under more favorable auspices. It was looked upon as an institution of education, and public and private schools attended in bodies. Men who have grown rich in the dime-museum business believe that the public do not wish instruction, but prefer to be amused with fakes. Nevertheless, the financial success of the New York Aquarium, during the period when it received its strongest support from the clergy and the men of science, has proved the allegation of the fake museum proprietors to be false.

THE QUEST OF THE THREE-TAILED KINGIO

On the first opening of the New York Aquarium I exhibited a fish from Japanese waters which was no larger than a man's hand. The Japanese name of this species is kingio, and the fish is very handsome in appearance, having three perfect tails, and is so graceful in its movements that these tails resemble folds of beautiful lace. It was presented to me by a friend of mine in Baltimore, who was in the habit of spending a portion of each year in Japan. Knowing how far advanced are the Japanese in pisciculture, this gentleman suc-