Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 49.djvu/861

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SKETCH OF ROBERT EMPIE ROGERS.

duced to the smallest proportions, such, as occurs to common illnesses on the cessation of a more or less prolonged epidemic.”

This book Ferri has dedicated to his little three-year-old son Dante, expressing the hope, as he says in his dedication, that when he is old enough to understand it, Italy may show fewer signs of moral pathology. It is certainly a remarkable work, and reflects great credit on its writer by its minute and impartial research.

 

SKETCH OF ROBERT EMPIE ROGERS.

FOR the facts in the life of Robert Empie Rogers, as well as of the other members of this family famous in science, the memorial paper of the late Dr. W. S. W. Ruschenberger is almost our only authority. Robert Empie Rogers was the youngest of the four brothers, sons of Patrick Kerr Rogers and Hannah Blythe, whose researches, several and joint, have conferred so much honor on the name. He was born in Baltimore, Md., March 29, 1813, and died in Philadelphia, September 6, 1884. His father having been called to be Professor of Natural Philosophy and Mathematics in William and Mary College, removed to Williamsburg, Va., in 1819. There his mother died in the next year, when Robert was seven years old, and the boys, Dr. Ruschenberger says, “became almost foster children in the families of the professors.” Robert seems to have received special care at the hands of the Rev. Adam P. Empie, D. D., and his wife, and in recognition of that care assumed the name of Empie. He was taught by his father, and after his death by his brothers James and William. The profession intended for him was that of engineer, and he began the exercise of it as an assistant in the survey of the Boston and Providence Railroad. Nothing is known about the engagement or the work done by young Rogers, except that the results of it were not satisfactory. In a letter written to his brother William in 1833, Robert expresses doubt of his prospect of success if he should try engineering again, and confesses that his favorite desire had always been to become an instructor. Civil engineering was given up, and Robert, having determined to study medicine, became a pupil of Dr. Robert Hare, Professor of Chemistry, “and worked zealously in his laboratory till the close of his undergraduate course.” He was graduated from the Medical Department of the University of Pennsylvania in March, 1836, offering as his thesis a paper on “Experiments on the Blood, together with some New Facts in regard to Animal and Vegetable Structures, illustrative of many of the most Important Features of Organic Life.” This thesis was published, with illustrations, in