Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 80.djvu/521

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THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE

THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE

THE CENTENARY OF THE ACADEMY OF NATURAL SCIENCES OF PHILADELPHIA

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia celebrated on March 19, 20 and 21 the centenary of its foundation, the last day being the actual date of the anniversary. On the first day Dr. S. G. Dixon, the president of the academy, gave a historical address and Dr. Edward J. Nolan, the secretary, gave reminiscences of the fifty years of his official connection with the academy. Delegates to the number of 147 presented letters, credentials and congratulations from the scientific and educational institutions which they represented. There was an important program of scientific papers. Dr. Dixon gave a reception on the second evening and on the third evening there was a banquet in the geological hall of the academy.

The centenary will be marked by the publication of a memorial volume, as well as the issue of a complete index of the academy publications, a work which has been under way for five years. The greatest memorial of the centenary, however, is the completion of the new buildings of the academy, which were temporarily put in shape for the celebration, but in whose new halls the great collections have not yet been fully installed. When finished, Philadelphia will possess in the group of buildings, which will face on one of the most important sections of the great Parkway, a museum of natural history admirably equipped in the way of collections, and in convenience of the exhibtion halls and of the research departments. Everything has been done by the president and the curators, utilizing the money appropriated by the state, to prepare a series of modern halls and rooms beautifully lighted both by day and by night, fireproof and meeting every demand of a modern museum. The result is an imposing group of buildings in brick, terra cotta and granite, with two entrances, one on Race Street, the principal entrance, and the other on Nineteenth Street, which gives access to the main service halls and the fine lecture room and the great library.

The new academy consists of three distinct buildings. The main buildings on Race Street, which replace the old historic centennial building of green-stone, is four stories high and is 184 feet long on Race Street, with a width of 64 feet. The first floor of this main building is given over to a large room with galleries supported by classic pillars, in which will be housed the great Vaux collection of minerals, and other mineralogical and geological treasures. Toward the Twentieth Street end, the valuable herbarium will be housed in the first and second stories, with the working rooms of the botanists arranged with the collections. In the archeological hall Mr. Clarence B. Moore's collection of Indian pottery will be the main feature, together with other collections relating to the history of 'mankind. Further south along the Nineteenth Street side are the lecture hall on the first floor and above it the great library and reading room. The book stacks are in the rear of the lecture hall, the reading room and the galleries, and run from the bottom to the top of the building. The library and lecture hall are really a separate building, protected by its construction from the menace of fire, its stacks representing the latest improvements and conveniences for the handling of the books.

On the second floor of the main building and the connecting wings there will be found the paleontological hall, 184 feet in length, with a width of 64 feet. This with its double galleries is the largest hall in the building. The connecting wing leading to the Nineteenth Street buildings will be given over to the Pennsylvania and New Jersey local collections, while the