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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 56.djvu/544

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528
POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

permanency and, consequently, cheapness can not be surpassed. When first used, these blocks were quite large, and the size has been decreased until the best stone pavements laid at the present

PSM V56 D0544 Cobblestone pavement on saratoga ave in brooklyn.png
Cobblestone Pavement ox Saratoga Avenue, Brooklyn.

time in Great Britain are six-inch cubes, or still smaller, with a surface four inches square and a depth of seven inches.

But stone pavement when most carefully laid and maintained is noisy and unpleasant to ride over, and in these days we can never reconcile such a pavement with a handsome residence street. The writer experienced a distinct shock when on riding over Euclid Avenue, in Cleveland, last year, he found it still paved with Medina sandstone blocks, and it seemed that this famous street was still living on the reputation which Bayard Taylor gave it years ago as the handsomest street in the world.

In looking about for something more quiet and smooth than stone, the first material tried was wood. In London the first wood pavement was laid in the Old Bailey in 1839, and was soon followed by many others. None of these pavements lasted more than seven years, and, as they cost more than granite and were so short-lived, a prejudice arose against them, and as they wore out they were mostly replaced with granite. Since that time wood pavement has become popular again, and a large area is now covered with it. The material most generally in use is Baltic fir, though there is quite a large amount of Australian hard wood which is more durable. The people of London seem willing to bear the greater ex-