Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 41.djvu/141

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131
LITERARY NOTICES.

three folded plates illustrating the relation of diphtheria to geology and topography.

Direct Legislation by the Citizenship through the initiative and referendum. By J. W. Sullivan. New York: Twentieth Century Co. Pp. 120. Price, cloth, 75 cents; paper, 25 cents.

When an American learns that Switzerland is far in the lead of her sister republics in the practice of democratic government, many questions arise in his mind. This little book is designed to answer them. Mr. Sullivan concisely recounts the progress of Switzerland in direct legislation during the past sixty years, and shows the remarkable influence of this legislation on the institutions of the country. The statistics he cites prove a very notable diffusion of prosperity. He next shows that to a considerable length direct legislation is practiced in the United States in township, county, and State governments, as well as in the national trades and labor organizations. In his concluding chapter Mr. Sullivan, although a strenuous individualist, argues that in direct legislation lies an open way to a peaceful political and economic revolution. To the Swiss referendum it is often objected that many legislative questions are above the ordinary voter's comprehension, and demand the specially trained mind of his representative. But would not this check of comprehensibility keep law-making within legitimate bounds, and abolish the antagonism which so often exists between the interests of the people and those of their legislators?

Elementary Text-Book of Zoölogy. By Dr. C. Claus. Translated and edited by Prof. Adam Sedgwick. Second edition. London and New York: Macmillan & Co. Two vols. Price, $8.

Among the German scientific text-books that have won high favor among American instructors is this work on zoölogy by Dr. Claus. It is in two volumes, the first comprising the General Part and the first Special Part—Protozoa to Insecta; the second volume containing the other Special Part—Mollusca to Man. In the General Part a bird's-eye view of the organization and development of animals in general is given, and this is followed by a brief historical review of the science of zoology, an explanation of the classification of the present day, and a statement of the evidence in favor of Darwin's theory of descent. In the special chapters which constitute the rest of the work, types of the several families are described with considerable detail. The text is illustrated with seven hundred and six woodcuts in Volume I and two hundred and five in the smaller Volume II.

 

Besides the list of towns and cities having water-works, and accounts of their works, The Manual of American Water-Works contains summaries and statistical information of great value to persons who are concerned in this subject. From it we learn that there were 2,037 water-works in operation on July 1, 1891, supplying 2,187 cities, towns, and villages; while in Canada there are 95 works, supplying 102 towns. Tables are given showing the distribution of this supply in the several States and provinces and groups of the same; towns having more than one plant; summaries of populations supplied; miles of mains, etc., also by States and groups. The last tables show that 22,814,061, or about 36 per cent of the inhabitants of the United States, live in towns having public water-works, and that only a few towns having 8,000 or more inhabitants are without works. The reported cost of 1,802 of the water-works in the United States and Canada aggregates $504,035,492. Other tables represent growth by number of works and populations supplied; dates of construction by groups of States and half decades; like summaries of works completed or under construction since 1880, and of works projected; information respecting the management of public water-works and tenure of office of governing bodies; consumption of water and use of metres; ownership, whether by the public or by private companies; franchises of water-works companies; and other facts of related character. The main part of the book comprises the list of water-works, given by States according to their geographical arrangement and by towns alphabetically, and comprising the items of history, source of supply, mechanism, financial condition, and managing boards.

A Preliminary Report on the Coal Deposits of Missouri has been prepared by the State Geologist, Arthur Winslow, in order