Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 16.djvu/868

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.

various projects, measures, and reforms, with which he has become identified. Science is devoted to the interests of truth, but that truth is for the service of humanity; and the work of research becomes of the highest value only in its large Baconian application to the "relief of the estate of man." It is through the intelligent and well-directed efforts of such men as Dr. Chandler that the fruits of science are applicable for the large amelioration and advantage of society. It is, moreover by the substantial and lasting benefits thus gained that the community is led to recognize its great debt to science which it discharges by increasingly liberal provisions for its cultivation and development.

Professor Chandler was born at Lancaster, Massachusetts, in 1836. His father became a merchant in New Bedford, where he still resides. On the maternal side he is descended from the rebels of the Revolution and on his father's side from the Tories. His maternal grandfather was John Whitney, an old Boston merchant; his grandmother was a daughter of John Slack, who fought at Lexington. The Chandlers originated with William Chandler and Annis his wife, who arrived in Roxbury, Massachusetts, from England in 1637. It was at Lancaster, Massachusetts, in the house of his grandfather, Nathaniel Chandler, who graduated at Harvard in 1792, that Professor Chandler was born.

Hunting chiastolites and other minerals at Lancaster during vacations, and attending lyceum lectures and listening to the elder Agassiz, led him to take an early interest in scientific studies, and while still a boy he turned his workshop in the attic into a laboratory. After graduating at the high school, he continued his classical studies privately with a friend of the family for a year, and then pursued his professional studies at the Lawrence Scientific School, and the Universities of Göttingen and Berlin.

His teachers in chemistry have been Horsford, Wöhler, and Heinrich Rose. Through the influence of Wöhler and his friend Professor Joy he obtained the position of private assistant to Rose during the year he spent in Berlin, in whose laboratory his only companion, besides Rose and his lecture assistant Oesten, was the now famous Nils Erich Nordenskjöld, the Arctic explorer. In physics he studied with Weber, Dove, and Magnus; in mineralogy he attended the lectures of Professor Cooke at Harvard, Yon Waltershausen in Göttingen, and Gustav Rose in Berlin. In geology he listened to the lectures of Agassiz. In 1856 he received his degree of Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Arts at Göttingen, publishing a dissertation containing the results of miscellaneous chemical investigations.

Soon after his return to America he accepted the position of assistant at Union College under his friend Professor Joy; and when, soon after, this gentleman was called to Columbia College, Chandler immediately succeeded to his duties, and began lecturing to the Senior Class, though not yet "of age"—politically. He remained here for eight years in charge of the laboratory, and lecturing to the col-