Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 43.djvu/333

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319
ARE THERE EVIDENCES OF MAN IN THE DRIFT?

voluntarily, and made many excursions together. For example, Mr. McGee believed that he had made some discoveries in Alabama and Mississippi which were inconsistent with conclusions reached by State geologists. Thereupon he conferred with Messrs. Hilgard, formerly of Mississippi, now of the University of California; Smith, of Alabama; Holmes, of North Carolina; Safford, of Tennessee; Hill, of Texas; and Ward, paleobotanist of the Geological Survey; and they visited the region together, all having distinct views somewhat differing from one another. They examined the problems concerning which differences of opinion had arisen, and they all united in a common conclusion. Subsequently Messrs. Chamberlin and Salisbury visited the same region in company with Mr. McGee, and came to substantial agreement with the first party. Such instances of harmonious co-operation have occurred again and again in all portions of the glaciated area. The whole body of men engaged in the research worked together for a common purpose, and were unwilling to publish material conclusions until the facts could be submitted to many minds. They worked with a harmony and a patience for dissenting opinion worthy of such a body of scientific men. Mr. Chamberlin, first the Professor of Geology at Beloit College, afterward President of the University of Wisconsin, and now in charge of the geological department of the new University of Chicago, had the largest share in all this work; he gave more time to it himself and he employed more assistants than any one else; in fact, he was considered the Nestor of the work. He had long before been the State Geologist of Wisconsin, where glacial formations are highly developed, and had made a special study of the subject, and all the workers in the field deferred largely to his judgment in suggesting methods of research.

Occasionally some observer failed to make the necessary discriminations, and dropped out of the work. Among others whom Prof. Chamberlin enlisted was Prof. G. F. Wright, of Oberlin College, who devoted some summer months to these investigations. Now, some of the observations made by Prof. Wright were of value, but he seemed to fail to distinguish overplacement from glacial formation; and, after trying him for two or three seasons, his labors were dispensed with. Thereupon Prof. Wright commenced the preparation of a popular work upon the history of the Ice period. When this came to the knowledge of Prof. Chamberlin, he demurred. Still, Prof. Wright continued his work, and ultimately published his book. On its appearance it was found that he had ignored the conclusions of his co-workers—had practically denied the accuracy of their observations—and had published a work on the history of the Ice period which they believed to be erroneous and misleading. But they let the subject pass