Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 43.djvu/879

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POPULAR MISCELLANY

already here, and that they in turn influence a considerable percentage of immigration that comes on tickets purchased directly in the Old World. The prepaid business is largely affected and increased by even temporary improvement in our conditions here. So far as this class of immigrants is concerned, it argues against the belief that exists in the minds of many of our people that the quality of immigration, as to character, is inferior to that of former years, as it necessarily follows that the class who are prepaid, belonging to the same families as those who prepay, must be of the same general character. This information as to our conditions is also supplemented by the large number of persons who return to their native lands temporarily, and whose improved appearance, enhanced prosperity, and statements to their old friends disseminate the knowledge of the better conditions in this country. A reference to the table of steerage passengers returning to all parts of Europe during the year previous to the making of the report demonstrates the volume of this business. Low passage rates, sea and inland, affect the currents both coming and going. Generally, wherever the manufacturing industries are active emigration is sluggish; and it is small wherever the wages are fairly good as compared with the standard of wants and manner of living of the working people. In addition to the superior conditions prevailing here, the conditions in Europe greatly affect the outflow. Short crops, industrial depression, social persecutions, and rumors and anticipations of war swell the tide.

Prof. N. T. Lupton.—Nathaniel Thomas Lupton, Professor of Chemistry in the Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical College, a pioneer in America in teaching chemistry as a practical science, died in Auburn, Ala., June 11th. He was a native of Virginia; studied chemistry under Bunsen at Heidelberg, worked with him afterward, and made special investigations in his laboratory after his own fame had been established in America. He was engaged during a large portion of his life in original research, at home, in Mexico, and in Europe; was connected with several Southern institutions of learning, including ten years at Vanderbilt University, and built up the school of chemistry at Auburn, Ala. He was much interested in other sciences than chemistry, particularly with ethnology, and contributed largely from his Mexican, Western, and Southwestern researches to the Smithsonian collection of relics of the Indians and mound-builders. His own collection of minerals and prehistoric relics is extensive and interesting. He was twice President of the Chemical Section of the American Association, was President last year of the Association of Official Chemists of the United States, and was a member of several foreign scientific and other societies. He was the author of a book on scientific agriculture, and a frequent and valued contributor to the scientific publications of this country and Europe.

Copper Works of the Aborigines.—The present evidence regarding the use of copper by the aborigines of this country, as reviewed by R. L. Packard, in the American Antiquarian, appears to show that the metal had not passed its ornamental or precious stage on the seaboard or in the South at the time this continent was brought to the attention of Europe. It was not part of the native equipment, either for war, or hunting, or other useful purposes, and its position in the native economy was not like the noticeable part it played in the armament of the Mexicans and Central Americans of the same period. In the absence of evidence that the Indians of the United States had any knowledge of smelting, it must be inferred that all the copper they possessed was found in the metallic or native state. There is nothing to show that they were aware of the existence of copper ore as a source of metal. No remains of smelting places, or slag, or other indications of metallurgical operations have yet been found. The quantity of copper which the North American Indians possessed at the time of the discovery, although the metal was diffused over a very wide territory, was very small as compared with stone. This is shown In the relatively small proportion of copper implements in the principal collections, as at the Smithsonian Institution and the Peabody Museum. The larger numbers are found in Wisconsin, and this is accounted for by the fact that Wisconsin is directly south of the Keweenaw district in Michigan where the largest beds of native