Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/870

This page has been validated.

absent from that region is evident from—the newspapers. So long as we understand by politics merely a scramble for office, so long will there be a very slight and indirect relation between political action and the general welfare; but it rests with an intelligent community to bring its politics up to a higher plane of a constant striving after social and economic harmonies and the realization of justice in all human relations. We are only able on this occasion to glance at one or two points of our subject; we think, however, that the lesson we would impress is sufficiently obvious. Science is not merely a thing of machinery and apparatus; it is not confined to the measurement of material forces or the explanation of physical phenomena. It is a method for the observation and co-ordination of facts and the forecasting of results; and wherever facts are to be found there Science is prepared to establish her kingdom. The unwise flout her pretensions, preferring the worship of Chance and Caprice; but the wise will range themselves on her side and strive to set up her peaceful reign, the benefits of which they know will extend to all, and increase from age to age.


For the third time in its history the American Association this year peacefully invaded Canada, with hearty repetition of former hospitalities at the hands of Northern friends—indeed, hospitalities were so abounding as to encroach a little upon the serious work of the meeting. Receptions, official and social, followed one another in quick succession, and excursions were organized to Niagara Falls, Muskoka, and the Sudbury mines. The local committee is to be congratulated on its appointment of Prof. Charles Carpmael as chairman; he is Director of the Toronto Observatory, and the weather during the week was therefore delightful. Canada is proving very attractive of late years as a meeting-place for American scientific organizations; its latitudes are a guarantee for comfort in vacation months, and its new railroads have developed immense tracts of the highest scientific, economic, and scenic interest. It promotes international amity that Americans and Canadians at work in the same fields of research should gather in the same rallying centers, and, as a consequence, form the friendships of men having aims in common. In crossing the border an American finds himself amid differences, social and political, sufficiently marked to make his visit instructive—differences, nevertheless, not so pronounced that he can persuade himself to regard Canadians as a foreign people.

Prof T. C. Mendenhall, Superintendent of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, was the presiding officer at the Toronto meeting. His ability and tact won him golden opinions on all hands. The addresses of the vice-presidents of the Association to their various sections were excellent—with one exception, which does not call for more specific mention. Prof. George L. Goodale, of Harvard, chairman of the Biological Section, delivered an address on protoplasm, treating his theme chiefly from the standpoint of vegetable histology and physiology—the field of science in which he is the leading American authority. General Garrick Mallery, of the Bureau of Ethnology, Washington, chairman of the Anthropological Section, made Israelite and Indian the subject of his address. He showed their parallelism in planes of culture, in methods of government, social observances, and religious faith. General Mallery's address will be presented in "The Popular Science Monthly" at an early date. Prof. H. S. Carhart, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, as chairman, of the Physical Section, gave a lucid presentation of theories of electricity.