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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY

The expedition to Peru arrived in Arequippa at the beginning of 1891, and a site for the observatory was selected on the crest of a ridge about 300 feet above the city. Here was erected an observatory in which there have been carried forward under the direction of Professor Bailey important observations on the southern stars.

After working in the observatory established by Professor Lowell in Arizona, Professor W. H. Pickering concluded that neither dryness nor altitude is the important factor affecting the quality of the seeing, and, in order to study the problem further, an expedition to Jamaica was undertaken in 1899, where observations were made at several stations from the sea-level to an altitude of 2,300 feet. In a second Jamaica expedition the following year a horizontal telescope, with an 18-inch mirror and 15-inch lens, was erected at Mandeville.

Professor Pickering concludes that elevation above the sea-level gives somewhat better definition, especially towards the horizon, and avoids dust and haze. A dry climate has advantages in its freedom from dew, cloud and fog, but does not give better definition than one that is moist. A low latitude has three advantages: The definition is better, the bodies to be observed pass near the zenith and a larger portion of the heavens is brought into view.

 

THE HANOVER MEETING OF THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION

On the invitation of Dartmouth College the American Association for the Advancement of Science will hold a special meeting at Hanover, N. H., from June 29 to July 3. The American Physical Society and the Geological Society of America will meet with the association, and regular programs will be arranged only in physics and in geology. There will, however, be public lectures and numerous interesting excursions, and those able to attend may look forward to a pleasant visit to a typical New England college under the most favorable conditions. The railways offer rates of a fare and a third on the certificate plan, and excellent local arrangements are assured for the entertainment of visitors. Many members regret the transfer of the annual meeting of the association from the summer to the winter. It is certainly true that the large meetings in a city are likely to sacrifice the social pleasures to business efficiency and to neglect one of the main objects of the association—the diffusion of science. A meeting such as this at Hanover should be attractive to those who wish to meet their colleagues amid pleasant surroundings, and to those not professionally engaged in scientific work but interested in it. Men and women of this class are especially welcomed to the present summer meeting and may feel free to attend without being elected in advance to membership. Those who go are certain to find the meeting both pleasant and useful.

 

SCIENTIFIC ITEMS

We record with regret the deaths of Dr. Heinrich Maschke, professor of mathematics in the University of Chicago; of M. Albert de Lapparent, the eminent French geologist; of Dr. K. Möbius, professor of zoology at Berlin, and of Dr. Pierre Jacques Antoine Béchamp, eminent for his researches in organic chemistry.

The house of representatives concurring with the senate and by a unanimous vote, has granted an annuity for life of $125 a month to the widows of the late Major James Carroll, surgeon, U. S. army, and the late acting assistant surgeon, Jesse W. Lazear, whose lives were sacrificed in the study of yellow fever in Cuba.