Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/294

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

will make the book of use to the ambulance corps connected with the different military organizations. He has endeavored to explain each topic in a simple manner, and when medical terms are used their lay synonyms are also given. Numerous illustrations have been inserted to aid in making the work readily intelligible.

The Insane in Foreign Countries. By William P. Letchworth. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 374. Price, $3.

This volume, by the President of the New York State Board of Charities, is an important contribution to the literature of its subject. It embodies an examination of European methods of caring for the insane, especially the insane in public institutions, pursued without interruption for seven months, supplemented by information obtained since the time of the author's visit. By way of contrast, a brief introductory sketch of the ways in which the insane were treated in earlier times is given. The systems employed in England, Scotland, and Ireland are then described in turn, and the characteristics of representative Continental institutions are set forth. A chapter each is given to the insane colony of Gheel, in Belgium, where is the celebrated shrine of St. Dymphna, and to the colony-hospital at Alt-Scherbitz in Saxony. The final and longest chapter, and the most important portion of the volume, presents a resume of the author's observations and his conclusions drawn from them. Based upon the results of his inspections of foreign and American asylums, and of his own experience in the supervision of the defective classes of New York State, Mr. Letchworth offers his views as regards the selection of sites and locations of asylums, the kind of buildings to be provided; the questions of sewage disposal, water-supply, protection against fire, the laying out of the grounds, the furnishing and decoration of wards and rooms, the difficult problem of the disposition of the acute, the chronic, and the criminal insane; the practice of restraint and the amount of liberty that may be granted; the character of the attendants to be chosen; the religious exercises, amusements, employments, dress and clothing, visitation and correspondence of patients, post-mortem examinations; the methods of admission and discharge, and the value of summer resorts. All these subjects are treated clearly and explicitly. Besides these, the author gives his personal views respecting the insane in poor-houses, local or district care of the insane, state care, the boarding-out system, state supervision, and kindred topics. The book is beautifully printed and richly illustrated with engravings and heliotype reproductions of plans of buildings and asylum interiors, and pictures of historical interest.

Geological Survey of New Jersey. Final Report of the State Geologist. Vol. I. Topography, Magnetism, Climate. By George H. Cook, State Geologist. Trenton: John L. Murphy Publishing Company. Pp. 439, with Maps, etc.

The survey was authorized by the State Legislature in 1864, and has been continued regularly till the date of the report. The act contemplated a completion of the work, previous partial surveys having been carried on by Henry D. Rogers in 1836-'40, and Dr. William Kitchell in 1854-'56. While the yearly reports of the present work that have been made and liberally distributed among the people have been somewhat miscellaneous as to the subjects discussed, on account of the prominence of special wants and interests, the various branches of the survey have been kept advancing, so that it has been found practicable to include the final geographical reports in this volume. The State Geologist has enjoyed the co-operation and assistance of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey; and the expense of conducting the latter half of the topographical work has been borne by the United States Geological Survey. Of the several parts of the present volume, the article on the Geodetic Survey, by Prof. Bowser, of the Coast Survey, gives accurate determinations, in latitude and longitude, of several hundred points, the stations of which are exactly described, and the primary ones distinctly marked on the spot. In the "Physical Description," Mr. C. C. Vermeule, after defining the geographical position and outlines of the State, relates the history of the questions of boundary and limits of jurisdiction from the beginning; marks the political divisions, with measurements of the areas of the counties and townships, and describes the topography of the State as being ' readily classed