Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 57.djvu/349

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THE

POPULAR SCIENCE

MONTHLY

 

AUGUST, 1900.




RHYTHMS AND GEOLOGIC TIME.[1]
By G. K. GILBERT,

UNITED STATES GEOLOGICAL SURVEY.

CUSTOM dictates that in complying with the rule of the association I shall address you on some subject of a scientific character. But before doing so I may be permitted to pay my personal tribute to the honored and cherished leader of whose loss we are so keenly sensible on this occasion. His kindly personality, the charm which his earnestness and sincerity gave to his conversation, the range of his accomplishment, are inviting themes; but it is perhaps more fitting that I touch this evening on his character as a representative president of this body. The association holds a peculiar position among our scientific organizations of national or continental extent. Instead of narrowing its meetings by limitations of subject matter or membership, it cultivates the entire field of research and invites the interest and cooperation of all. It is thus not only the integrating body for professional investigators, but the bond of union between these and the great group of cultured men and women—the group from whose ranks the professional guild is recruited, through whom the scientific spirit is chiefly propagated, and through whose interest scientific research receives its financial support. Its aims and form of organization recognize, what pure science does not always itself recognize, that pure science is fundamentally the creature and servant of the material needs of mankind, and it thus stands for what might be called the human side of science. Edward Orton, throughout his career as teacher and investigator, was conspicuous for his attention to the human side of science. His most ab-


  1. Read to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, at Now York, June 1900, as the address of the retiring President.