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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 57.djvu/345

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THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE.

stitutions established by private initiative have been assisted by the State, and State institutions have received large sums from private individuals. The New York institutions referred to above—the American Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Public Library, the Botanical Gardens and the Zoölogical Park—are in almost equal measure supported by the city and by citizens of the city. Johns Hopkins University, the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University and other privately endowed institutions have received assistance from the State, without any decrease in private gifts, while the State universities, California for example, are receiving large private endowments in addition to their support from the State. These conditions may not last, but at all events they obtain at the present time, and we find the country in which the largest gifts from private individuals are made for education and science to be the country in which they are most liberally supported by the Government.

 

Never before has any government made such great appropriations for the development of the resources of the country or for the advance of science as the Congress which has just adjourned. We may take for example the Department of Agriculture, for which the appropriation is $4,023,500, an increase of more than $280,000 over the appropriation for the preceding year. Every one familiar with the conditions at Washington and throughout the country will know that this large sum of money is expended with the utmost economy, and there is no doubt but what the money invested by the nation is returned to the people many fold in the course of every year. Some of the items of the bill deserve special notice. Thus, a new agricultural experiment station is to be established in the Hawaiian Islands, and the work of the Weather Bureau is to be extended to them. The agricultural resources and capabilities of Porto Rico are to be investigated, and bulletins of information in English and in Spanish are to be distributed to the inhabitants. The division of chemistry is to investigate the use of food preservatives and coloring matter, determine their relations to health and establish the principles which should guide their use.' The division of forestry receives an increase of $40,000 and the Weather Bureau an increase of over $35,000. Other items of the appropriation act are as follows: Biological Survey, $30,300, an increase of $2,740; Division of Botany, $43,080, an increase of $14,280; Nutrition Investigation, $17,500, an increase of $2,500; Division of Pomology, $18,400; Public Road Inquiry, $14,000, an increase of $6,000; Division of Statistics, $146,160; Library, $14,000; and Museum, $2,260.

 

While American men of wealth have given freely of their means for the promotion of education and science, they have not so often devoted their own time to its service. This is natural, as the wealth has in most cases been acquired by the present generation, and it is in succeeding generations, when families have been established, that leisure and wealth will give a class similar to that which has accomplished so much for Great Britain and to a lesser extent for Germany and France. Still, it is the case that the heads of two of our chief universities are men of great wealth, who have devoted not only their means, but also their services to the cause of education, and there are in our universities and other institutions many who hold their positions purely out of interest in their work, not as a means for their support. In the next generation there will probably be more representatives of a class to which belonged the Duke of Argyll, whose death we were compelled to record last month. Another man has since died of a somewhat similar type. When Colonel Lane-Fox somewhat unexpectedly succeeded to large estates in Wiltshire and Dorsetshire and assumed the