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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/421

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SKETCH OF HENRY CARVILL LEWIS.

SKETCH OF HENRY CARVILL LEWIS.

ALTHOUGH Prof. Lewis died at an age when men usually have hardly more than begun to produce matured work, his name had already become associated with the solution of a most important geological question, and he was recognized as one who had led the science another step forward.

Henry Carvill Lewis was born in Philadelphia, November 16, 1853, and died in Manchester, England, July 21, 1888. He was descended from an ancient patrician family, the Ludewigs, of the free imperial city of Hall, in Swabia, who are mentioned as having occupied as early as the fourteenth century responsible positions as military and civil officers in their city and in the Holy Roman Empire. In the beginning of the eighteenth century, the sons of his ancestor, Johann Peter Ludewig, appear as distinguished in arms and letters. One of them, Johann Peter von Ludewig, besides having other dignities, was a learned jurist and historiographer and poet laureate of the empire, and the author of many historical and legal works. His own ancestor of this generation, Johann David Ludewig, was connected with military and court life. His great-grandfather removed to America in 1784 and anglicized his name to Lewis. His grandfather, John F. Lewis, and his father, F. Mortimer Lewis, were engaged in the East India trade. The latter, since retiring from business, has been actively engaged in various philanthropies in connection with hospitals and benevolent institutions, and is now President of the Pennsylvania Institution for the Deaf and Dumb and of the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. An incident that occurred when Henry Lewis was little more than an infant is mentioned by his biographer as showing an early inclination toward geological studies. He was found, while on a visit to the country, digging in the gravel-walk with a spoon, and, when asked why he was doing it, replied that he "wanted to see what was underneath." This may have been only a manifestation of childish activity which under other circumstances might not have been noticed and have passed without influence upon his career; but his father and his maternal grandfather, Mr. Henry Carvill, were quick to observe the direction of the dawning intelligence of the boy, and to cultivate whatever profitable tastes he might show. The generous interest taken by his father in fostering the bent of his son's mind toward research deserves, in fact, special recognition and acknowledgment. As soon as his son displayed earnest leanings in this direction, Mr. Lewis provided every facility for helping him in his favorite studies. Instead of attempting, as too