Popular Science Monthly/Volume 56/February 1900/Notes


The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has received, by the will of Mr. Edward Austin, deceased at the age of ninety-four years, a bequest of $400,000, the interest of which is to be used for the assistance of needy and meritorious teachers in prosecuting their studies. In addition to this bequest, the institute received, during 1898, an accession of $928,000 to its general funds, and one of $46,000 to its scholarship funds.

At the recent meeting of the Allied Scientific Societies, at New Haven, Conn., Mr. G. K. Gilbert, of the United States Geological Survey, was chosen to act as retiring President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, in place of Prof. Edward Orton, deceased.

The meeting of the Allied Scientific Societies of the United States was held in New Haven, Conn., during holiday week. It was much larger than either of the meetings previously held, and was attended by nearly five hundred members, representing ten societies—viz., the American Society of Naturalists, the Association of American Anatomists, the American Morphological, Physiological, Psychological, and Chemical Societies, the Society for Plant Morphology and Physiology, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Archæological Association of America. The discussions were all interesting.

The great Roman Catholic Missionary Society, the Sacred Congregation of the Propagation of the Faith, is reported to have sent a circular to all its missionaries urging them to interest themselves in the collection of natural-history specimens for scientific societies and institutions. This is intended, it is said, to interest and encourage missionaries who have a scientific bent, and to inform the world that the Church is not hostile to biological research.

We have to record, among the later deaths of men in science, the names of Francis Guthrie, formerly Professor of Mathematics in Graaff Reinet College and afterward in South African College till 1898, aged sixty-eight years; he was interested in botany, on which he gave public lectures, and, with Harry Bolus, revised the order of Heaths for Flora capensis; Prof. P. Knuth, botanist and author of researches on the relations of insects and flowers and on cross-fertilization, at Kiel, Germany, aged forty-five years; he had published two of the projected three volumes of the Handbuch der Blüten Biologie; Prof. R. Yatube, Japanese botanist; Ferdinand Tiemann, honorary Professor of Chemistry in the University of Berlin; Alexander McDougall, inventor, sixty years ago, of an atmospheric railway, and since of many useful mechanical and chemical appliances, at Southport, England; Dr. Camera Pestana, chief of the Bacteriological Institute at Lisbon, Portugal, of plague, which he contracted while experimenting with it at Oporto; and Prof. Elliott Coues, an American naturalist, most distinguished in ornithology, in Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, December 25th, after a surgical operation, aged sixty-seven years; he had been a professor in Norwich University, Vermont, and in the National Medical College in Washington, and had done scientific work while in the military service of the Government, in the Geological Survey, and in the United States Northern Boundary Commission; and was the author of several books on ornithology and on the Fur-bearing Animals, besides editing the journals of Lewis and Clark and other books of American exploration.