Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 42.djvu/286

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The book is primarily addressed to working electricians who have charge of alternating-current apparatus, but it may be read understandingly by any one who is sufficiently interested in the progress of electricity to have taken the trouble to acquire a rudimentary knowledge of the subject.

The book opens with a brief consideration of the phenomena of induction and its application to the transformer. A chapter is given to a mathematical consideration of it, one to the changes it has undergone to fit it for commercial use, and one each to its construction and its use in practice. The book closes with a description of the chief commercial transformers. Various miscellaneous subjects, which could not well find a place in the body of the book, are noticed in an appendix.

Induction Coils. By G. E. Bonnet. New York: Macmillan & Co., 1892. Pp. 231. Price, $1.

The author has essayed in this volume to give such practical knowledge of the methods of constructing and operating induction coils as will be of use to the amateur coil-maker. After considering briefly the theory of induction, he gives directions how to construct spark-coils, devotes a chapter each to Accessories to Coils, and special forms of coils. Some of the other chapters are Batteries for Coils, Repair of Batteries and Coils, and Useful Notes on Coils. He also devotes a chapter to some of the famous coils, such as that constructed for Mr. Spottiswoode by Apps, of London. The book is provided with a general index, and is quite fully illustrated.

The Economy of High Wages. By J. Schoenhof. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1892. Pp. 414. Price, $1.50.

In a time like the present, when a campaign of education on the tariff question is in progress, and when not only the great mass of the people, but many of the supposed beneficiaries of the tariff, are awakening to the fact that prosperity by taxation is not quite what it is represented to be, a book like the present one is a very welcome addition to the current literature of the subject. The protected classes have succeeded in maintaining themselves in the enjoyment of their present gratuities by their appeals to the workingmen to support protection as the sole guarantor of high wages. Protectionists have never tired of contrasting the day rate of wages in this country and Europe, claiming that they were due to the tariff, and that, if American manufacturing industries were deprived of the benefits of protection, wages must fall. In all their discussions of wages they have assiduously represented that the difference in wages corresponded with the difference in labor cost of the goods made here and abroad. It has been pointed out a good many times by tariff reformers that high wages do not necessarily mean high cost of production, but no one has heretofore taken up the question and dealt with it in such detail as the author of the present work. Mr. Schoenhof is peculiarly well fitted to undertake his task. He was commissioned by the late Secretary Bayard to make a study of the question in the trade and manufacturing centers of Europe while in the diplomatic service under the Cleveland administration, and has himself had an extended experience as an employer of labor. He not only controverts the proposition that a high rate of day wages necessarily means a high labor cost in production, but maintains that a high rate of wages is necessarily associated with a low labor cost of the goods. High wages mean high efficiency of the worker and low wages low efficiency, and the essential condition of the payment of high wages is that the worker is so much more efficient and has the command of so much better tools that he can produce goods more cheaply. Our high-priced American labor, therefore, has nothing to fear from the cheaper labor of England, and the relatively high-priced labor of England nothing to fear from the low-priced labor of the Continent. The real cheapness of high-priced and therefore efficient labor, when measured in commodities produced, which is the only consideration that has any bearing on the question of the competition of producers, can be readily apprehended and arrived at deductively. Mr. Schoenhof does not content himself, however, with an argument, but examines in detail the chief trades and industries of the world, finding that everywhere a high rate of wages and a low labor cost in production go hand in hand. He gives schedules in the pottery, glass, iron, cotton, and woolen industries,