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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 54.djvu/549

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HISTORY OF SCIENTIFIC INSTRUCTION.

gineering was established by the department at the request of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, "with a view of providing especially for the education of shipbuilding officers for her Majesty's service, and promoting the general study of the science of shipbuilding and naval engineering." It was not limited to persons in the Queen's service, and it was opened on November 1, 1864. The present Royal College of Science was built for it and the College of Chemistry. In 1873 the school was transferred to the Royal Naval College, Greenwich, and this accident enabled the teaching from Jermyn Street to be transferred and proper practical instruction to be given at South Kensington. The Lords of the Admiralty expressed their entire satisfaction with the manner in which the instruction had been carried on at South Kensington; and well they might, for in a memorandum submitted to the Lord President in 1887, the president and council of the Institute of Naval Architects state: "When the department dealt with the highest class of education in naval architecture by assisting in founding and by carrying on the School of Naval Architecture at South Kensington, the success which attended their efforts was phenomenal, the great majority of the rising men in the profession having been educated at that institution."

Here I again point out, both with regard to the School of Mines, the School of Naval Architecture, and the later Normal School, that it was stern need that was in question, as in Egypt in old times.

Of the early history of the college I need say nothing after the addresses of my colleagues, Professors Judd and Roberts-Austen, but I am anxious to refer to some parts of its present organization and their effect on our national educational growth in some directions.

It was after 1870 that our institution gradually began to take its place as a normal school—that is, that the teaching of teachers formed an important part of its organization, because in that year the newly established departments, having found that the great national want then was teachers of science, began to take steps to secure them. Examinations had been inaugurated in 1859, but they were for outsiders, conferring certificates and a money reward on the most competent teachers tested in this way. These examinations were really controlled by our school, for Tyndall, Hofmann, Ramsay, Huxley, and Warington Smyth, the first professors, were also the first examiners.

Very interesting is it to look back at that first year's work, the first cast of the new educational net. After what I have said about the condition of chemistry and the establishment of the College of Chemistry in 1845, you will not be surprised to hear that Dr. Hofmann was the most favored—he had forty-four students.