Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 63.djvu/287

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THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE.

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the rain is clear for as scion as the moon is visible a thunderstorm ceases.' The science of the universities was under the domination of the 'speculative physics' of Hegel and Schelling, whose chemistry is fairly represented by such a quotation as "Water contains just the same as iron, but in absolute indifference as yonder in relative indifference, carbon and nitrogen, and thus all true polarity of the earth is reduced to an original south and north which are fixed in the magnet." What Liebig accomplished will be better appreciated if the deplorable state of science in the German universities is recalled.

Liebig was made professor of chemistry at Giessen at the age of twenty-one, and full professor two years later. He immediately proceeded to establish a laboratory for students, the prototype not only of chemical laboratories, but of the laboratory method in science. In 1852 he removed to Munich, where he died in 1873. Like many other men eminent in research, Liebig was a great teacher, an editor and a popularizer of science. He also combined the discovery of facts with the formulation of wide-reaching theories. Neither the facts nor the theories can be described here; it suffices to say that Liebig may properly be regarded as the founder of organic, physiological and agricultural chemistry.

THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY.

The thirty-fourth annual report (that for 1902) of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City records the events of a prosperous year for the institution. During the year the membership increased materially, and the attendance on lectures was larger than ever before. Several scientific societies held their regular meetings in the building. In October, 1902, the International Congress of Americanists held its thirteenth annual session at the museum, and discussed subjects relating to 'The Native Races of America' and 'The History of the Early Contact between America and the Old World.'

In May 1902, upon the arrival of the news of the disaster in Martinique, Dr. Hovey, of the Geological Department, was detailed by the president to investigate the causes of the eruptions, and his work has placed the museum among the leading contributors to seismology.

The additions to the collections of mammals during the year numbered more than 2,000, secured largely through the museum collectors. The gift of the Peary Arctic Club of about one hundred mammals, collected by Commander Peary on his last Arctic expedition, is especially noteworthy. The museum is now the richest in the world in mammals from Arctic America. The donations from the New York Zoological Society and the Central Park Menagerie are of great value to the museum. The specimens of mammals obtained by the Andrew J. Stone Expedition in North British Columbia form the largest single collection that has ever been brought down from the north. In the Bahamas and Virginia material was collected for special bird groups for the museum. The vertebrate paleontological collections of the museum were enriched by expeditions maintained in the field, and the establishment of a fund by a member of the board of trustees for providing material to illustrate the origin and development of the horse produced immediate results of the highest importance. The Cope collections, the purchase of which was effected in the year, include fossil reptiles, amphibians and fishes, and the Pampean collection of fossil mammals from South America.

A number of archeological collections not before exhibited were installed, notably the valuable collections made in the southwest under grants furnished by the Messrs. Hyde. Through