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The Popular Science Monthly Volume LXXXVI July to September, 1915 The Scientific Monthly Volume I October to December, 1915

Part 5 out of 8

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or if an earthquake of incredible dimensions should shake down
every house from the Atlantic to the Pacific, the waste would
be less than that involved in this war. And an elemental
catastrophe leaves behind it no costly legacy of hate; even the
financial troubles are not ended with the treaty of peace. The
credit of Europe is gone for one does not know how long. Before
the war, it is said, there were $200,000,000,000 in bonds and
stocks in circulation in Europe. Much of this has been sold for
whatever it would bring. Some of the rest is worth its face
value Some of it is worth nothing. In the final adjustment who
can know whether he is a banker or a beggar?

The American Ambassador was quite within bounds when he said:
"There isn't so much money in the world; you can't even think

Or we may calculate (with Dr. Edward T. Devine) in a totally
different way. The cost of this war would have covered every
moral social, economic and sanitary reform ever asked for in
the civilized world, in so far as money properly expended can
compass such results. It could eliminate infectious disease,
feeble-mindedness, the slums and the centers of vice. It could
provide adequate housing, continuity of labor, insurance
against accident; in other words it could abolish almost every
kind of suffering due to outside influences and not inherent in
the character of the person concerned.

A Russian writer, quoted by Dr. John H. Finley, puts this idea
in a different form:

'Our most awful enemies, the elements and germs and insect
destroyers, attack us every minute without cease, yet we murder
one another as if we were out of our senses. Death is ever on
the watch for us, and we think of nothing but to snatch a few
patches of land! About 5,000,000,000 days of work go every year
to the displacement of boundary lines. Think of what humanity
could obtain if that prodigious effort were devoted to fighting
our real enemies, the noxious species and our hostile
environment. We should conquer them in a few years. The entire
globe would turn into a model farm. Every plant would grow for
our use. The savage animals would disappear, and the infinitely
tiny animals would be reduced to impotence by hygiene and
cleanliness. The earth would be conducted according to our
convenience. In short, the day men realize who their worst
enemies are, they will form an alliance against them, they will
cease to murder one another like wild beasts from sheer folly.
Then they will be the true rulers of the planet, the lords of

Says Robert L. Duffus:

'Money spent in warfare is not like spending money in other
industries. It will bring far more beastliness, far more
injustice, far more tyranny, far more danger to all that is
honorable, generous and noble in the world, far more grief and
rage than money spent in any other way. Not one per cent. of
the amount devoted to these purposes, is, for the end aimed at,

It is said that the main cause of the war lay in the envy of
German commerce by British rivals. This is assuredly not true.
But if it were, let us look at the business side of it. Taking
the net profits of over-seas trade as stated two years ago by
the Hamburg-American Company, the strongest in the world, and
estimating the rest, we have something like this:

During the "Dry War" the net earnings of the German Mercantile
fleet was about one third the cost of the navy supposed to
protect it. It would take seventy years of trade, on the scale
of the last year before the war, to repay Germany's expenses
for a year of war. To make good all the losses of Europe would
require more than one hundred years of the over-seas trading
profits of all the world. War is therefore death to trade, as
it is to every other agency of civilization.

At the beginning of the war the value of stocks and bonds in
circulation in Europe amounted to about $200,000,000,000. What
is the present value of all these certificates of ownership?
What is the present value of any particular industrial plant or
commercial venture?

A friend in London had inherited through his German wife a
large aniline dye plant on the Rhine. He told me recently that
he had not heard one word from it for six months. What will be
its value when he hears from it? And what certainty has he as
to its ownership?

Is it true that this war is the outcome of commercial jealousy?
Let us look at this for a moment. The two greatest shipping
companies in the world before the war were the Hamburg-American
Company and the Nord-Deutscher Lloyd of Bremen. These companies
had grown strong because they deserved to grow. They had
attended to their affairs both in shipment of freight and
transportation of passengers with that minute attention to
details which is so large an element in German success. The
growth of these companies arose through American trade and
especially through trade with Great Britain and the British
possessions. Did they clamor for war--a war, whatever else
might result, sure to cripple their trade for a generation. It
is said that Ballin, of the Hamburg Company, unable to prevent
Great Britain from rising to the defense of Belgium "went home
broken-hearted." Did Ballin build the great Imperator, costing
nine million--six million of it borrowed money--with a view of
laying her off after a few trips for an indefinite period in
Hamburg? Did the Nord-Deutscher Lloyd contemplate leaving the
Vaterland and the George Washington to lie in Hoboken till they
were sold for harbor dues?

Nor was the jealousy on the other side. The growth of German
commerce concerned mainly Great Britain. Presumably it was
profitable on both sides, for all trade is barter. In any
event, Great Britain has never raised a tariff wall against it,
never protected her traders by a single differential duty. She
has risen above the idea that by tariff exactions the
foreigners can be made to pay the sages. As for envy of German
commerce, who ever heard of an Englishman who envied anybody

Again, did the Cunard Company build her three great steamships,
the Mauretania, the Lusitania, the Aquitania for the fate which
has come to them? In 1914 I saw the great Aquitania, finest of
all floating palaces, tied by the nose to the wharf at
Liverpool, the most sheepish-looking steamship I ever saw
anywhere. Out of her had been taken $1,250,000 worth of plate
glass and plush velvet, elevators and lounging rooms, the
requirements of the tender rich in their six days upon the sea.
The whole ship was painted black, filled with coal--to be sent
out to help the warships at sea. And for this humble service I
am told she proved unfitted.

No, commercial envy is not a reason, rivalry in business is not
a reason, need of expansion is not a reason. These are excuses
only, not causes of war. There is no money in war. There is no
chance of highway robbery in the byways of history which can
repay anything tangible of the expense of the expedition. The
gray old strategists do not care for this. It is fair to them
to say they are not sordid. They care no more for the financial
exhaustion of a nation than for the slaughter of its young men.
"An old soldier like me," said Napoleon, "does not care a
tinker's damn for the death of a million men." Neither does he
care for the collapse of a million industrial corporations.

Of the many forms of business and financial relation among men,
none is more important than those included under the name of
insurance. Insurance is a form of mutual help. By its influence
the effects of calamity are spread so widely that they cease to
be felt as calamity. The fact of death can not be set aside,
but through insurance it need not appear as economic disaster,
only as personal loss. Its essential nature is that of social
cooperation and it furnishes some of the most effective of
bonds which knit society together. As insurance has become
already an international function, its influence should be felt
continuously on the side of peace. That it is so felt is the
justification of our meeting together to-day, as underwriters
of insurance and as workers for peace. The essence of
insurance, as Professor Royce observes, is that

'it is a principle at once peace-making in its general tendency
and business-like in its practicable special application.... As
a result of insurance, men gradually find themselves involved
in a social network of complicated but beneficent relations of
which individuals are usually very imperfectly aware but by
means of which modern society has been profoundly transformed.'

For life insurance, in general, is not personally selfish in
its motive. It is essentially altruistic, the effort of the
benefit of some person beloved who is designated as the
beneficiary. For the benefit of this surviving person, the
efforts involved in the payment of premiums are put forth, and
the insurance companies and their underwriters constitute the
machinery by which this unification is given to society.

To all the interests of insurance, the lawlessness of war is
wholly adverse and destructive. Insurance involves mutual trust
and trust thrives under security of person and property.
Insurance demands steadiness of purpose and continuity of law.
In war, all laws are silent. War is the brutish, blind, denial
of law, only admissible when all other honorable alternatives
have been withdrawn--the last resort of "murdered, mangled

In its direct relation, war destroys those who to the
underwriter represent the "best risks," the men most valuable
to themselves and thus most valuable to the community. Those
whom war leaves behind, to slip along the lines of least
resistance into the city slums, are the people insurance rarely
reaches. War confuses administration of insurance. Policies, in
war time, can be written only on a sliding scale. This greatly
increases the premium by reducing the final payments. Increase
of rate of premium must decrease business. War means financial
anarchy, inflated currency and depreciation of bonds. A
currency which fluctuates demoralizes all business and war
leaves no alternative. The slogan "business as usual" in war
time deceives nobody. If it did, nobody would gain by the
deception. Enforced loans from the reserve fund of insurance
companies to the state mean the depreciation of reserves. The
substitution of unstable government bonds means robbery of the
bond holders. The yielding to the state, by enforced "voluntary
action," of reserves of savings banks and insurance companies
represents a form of state robbery. This is now in practice on
the continent of Europe. Such funds are probably never actually
confiscated but held in abeyance until the close of the war.
This is another form of the everpresent "military necessity,"
which seizes men's property with little more compunction than
it shows in seizing men's bodies. War conditions mean
insecurity of investment. In war, all bonds are liable to
become "scraps of paper," and no fund can be made safe. The
insurance investments in Europe have been enormously depleted
in worth, a reduction in market value estimated at 50 per cent.

Experts in insurance tell me that in war time certain policies
are written so as to be scaled down automatically when the
holder goes under the colors. Some are invalid in time of war,
and some have the clause of free travel greatly abridged. A few
are written to apply to all conditions, but on these the rates
of premiums would naturally increase. Companies generally
refuse to pay under conditions not nominated in the bond, and
in general all policies are automatically reduced to level of
war policies when war begins.

I am told that some American companies issue group policies as
for any or all of a thousand men, these not subject to a
physical examination. The war claims in Great Britain have been
very heavy, because such a large proportion of clerks,
artisans, students and other insurable or well-paid men have
been first to volunteer. Some insurance companies have been
much embarrassed by the general enlistment of their employees.

In fire insurance, conditions are much the same. All contracts
in foreign nations are held in abeyance until the close of war.
Such companies doing business in America are now mostly
incorporated as American.

In every regard, the business of insurance is naturally allied
with the forces that make for peace. War brings ruin, through
increase of loans, through the exhaustion of reserves and the
precarious nature of investment. The same remark applies in
some degree to every honorable or constructive business. If any
other form of danger threatened a great industry, its leaders
would be on the alert. They would spare no money and leave no
stone unturned for their own protection.

Towards war, business has always shown a stupid fatalism. War
has been thought "inevitable," coming of itself at intervals
with nobody responsible.

There could not be a greater error. War does not come of
itself, nor without great and persistent preparation. A few
hundred resolute men, bent on war, led by unscrupulous leaders
brought on this war. The military group of one nation plays
into the hands of like groups in other nations. To keep up war
agitation long enough, whether the cause be real or imaginary,
seems to hypnotize the public mind. The horrors of war
fascinate rather than repel, and thousands of men in this land
of peace are ready to fight in Europe to one who dreamed of
such a line of action a year or two ago.

"Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty." The interests
involved should put honest business on its guard. The insurance
men could afford to maintain a thousand observers, men wise in
business as well as in International Law, and in the manners
and customs of the people of the world. A few dozen skilful
politico-military detectives--men like W. J. Burns for example
employed in the interest of finance might save finance a
billion dollars. These should watch the standing incentives to
war. Such men should stand guard against the influences that
work toward conflict. Those who work for peace should be not
"firemen to be called in to put out the fire" already started
through the negligence of business men but agents for
"fireproof building material" in our national edifice, to stand
at all times for the security of business, the sanctity of law,
order and peace. This kind of "preparedness for war" would
involve no risks of conflict, of victory or defeat.





THERE are several lines of evidence in support of the order of
evolution which we have outlined.

1. The close relationship of the bright-line nebular spectrum,
the bright-line stellar spectrum and the spectra of the
simplest helium stars; the practically continuous sequence of
spectra from the helium stars to the red stars.

2. In the long run, we must expect the stars to grow colder, at
least as to the surface strata. What the average interior
temperatures are is another question; the highest interior
temperatures are thought to be reached at an intermediate or
quite late stage in the process, in accordance with principles
investigated by Lane and others; but the temperatures existing
in the deep interiors seem to have little direct influence in
defining the spectral characters of the stars, which are
concerned more directly with the surface strata.[1] We should
therefore expect the simpler types of spectra, such as we find
in the helium and hydrogen stars, in the early stages of the
evolutionary process. The complicated spectra of the metals,
and particularly the oxides of the metals, should be in
evidence late in stellar life, when the atmospheres of the
stars have become denser and colder.

[1] This important point seems not to have been realized by all

3. The velocities of the Orion nebula, the Trifid nebula, the
Carina nebula, and of several other irregular nebulae, have
been measured with the spectroscope. These bodies seem to be
nearly at rest with reference to the stellar system. The helium
stars have the lowest-known stellar velocities, and the average
velocities of the stars are higher and higher as we pass from
the helium stars, through the hydrogen and solar stars, up to
the red stars. The average velocities of the brighter stars of
the different spectral classes, as determined with the D. O.
Mills spectrographs at Mount Hamilton and in Chile, are as in
the following table:

Spectral No. of Class Stars Average Velocity in Space
B 225 12.9 km. per Sec.
A 177 21.9
F 185 28.7
G 128 29.9
E 382 33.6
M 73 34.3

We can not place the irregular nebulae after the red stars:
their velocities are too small, and their spectra have no
resemblances to the red-star spectra.

4. Wherever we find large irregular gaseous nebulae we find
stars in the early subdivisions of the helium group. They are
closely related in position. This is true of the Orion and
other similar regions. The irregular, gaseous nebulae are in
general found in and near the Milky Way, and so are the helium
stars. The yellow and red stars, at least the brighter ones, do
not cluster in nebulous regions.

5. The stars are more and more uniformly distributed over the
sphere as one goes from the helium stars through the hydrogen
and solar stars, to the red stars. The Class M stars show
little or no preference for the Milky Way. Of course, I am
speaking here of the brighter and nearer stars which we have
been able to study by means of the spectroscope, and not at all
of the faint stars which form the unstudied distant parts of
the Milky Way structure. The helium stars are young, their
motions are slow, and they have not wandered far from the place
of their birth. Not so with the older stars.

6. The visual double stars afford strong evidence that the
order of evolution described is correct. The 36-inch refractor
has shown that one star in 18, on the average, brighter than
the ninth visual magnitude, consists of two or more suns which
we can not doubt are in slow revolution around each other. The
number of double stars observable would be very much greater
than this if they were not so far away. Of the 20 stars which
we say are our nearest neighbors, 8 are well known double
stars; one double in each two and one half, on the average.
Aitken has made a specialty of observing the double stars whose
components in each case are very close together and are in
comparatively rapid revolution. His program includes 164 such
systems whose types of spectra are known, as in the following

Spectrum Number of Double Stars
Bright-line 0
Class B 4
Class A-F 131
Class G-N 28
Class M-N? 1

The message which this table brings is clear. The double stars
whose spectra are of the Bright-Line and Class B varieties have
their components so close together that only 4, of Class B, are
visible. The great majority fall in Classes A to K; 159 out of
164. The component stars in these classes are far enough apart
to be visible in the telescopes, and yet are close enough to be
revolving in periods reasonably short. In the Class M double
stars, this program contains not more than one star, and I
believe the explanation is this: double stars of Class M are in
general so far apart, and therefore their periods of revolution
are so long, that they do not get upon programs of rapidly
revolving stars. Also, the fainter components in many red stars
must have cooled off so far that they are invisible. The
distances between the components of visual double stars are in
general the greater as we proceed from the helium stars through
the various spectral classes up to Class M. There are reasons
for believing that two stars revolving around their center of
mass have gradually increased their distance apart, and
therefore their revolution period. If this is true, the Classes
G and K; double stars are effectively older than Classes A and
F double stars, and these in turn are effectively older than
Class B double stars.

7. The spectrograph has great advantages over the telescope in
discovering and observing double stars whose components are
very close together, by virtue of the facts that the
spectrograph measures, velocities of approach and recession in
absolute units--so many kilometers per second--and that the
speeds of rotation in binary systems are higher the closer
together the two components are. The observations of the
brighter helium stars, especially those made at the Yerkes
Observatory by Frost and Adams, have shown that one helium star
in every two and one half on the average is a very close
double. In beta Cephei, an early Class B star, the components
are so close that they revolve around each other in 4 1/2
hours; many systems have periods in the neighborhood of a day,
of two days, of three days, and so on. Similar observations
made with the D. O. Mills spectrographs in both hemispheres
have shown that about one star in every four of the bright
stars, on the average, is a double star. In general, the
proportion of spectroscopic doubles discovered to date is
greatest in Class B and decreases as we proceed toward Class M.
The explanation is simple: in the Class B doubles the
components are close together, their orbital velocities are
very high and change rapidly, and the spectrograph is able to
discover the variations with little loss of time. As we pass
toward the yellow and red spectroscopic binaries we find the
components separated more and more, the orbital velocities are
smaller and the periods longer, the variations of velocity are
more difficult to discover, and in the wider pairs we must wait
many years before the variations become appreciable. There is a
very marked progression of the average lengths of periods of
the spectrographic double stars as we pass from the Class B to
the Class M pairs. Similarly, the eccentricities of the orbits
of the binaries increase as we proceed in the same direction.
Accumulating evidence is to the effect that the proportion of
double stars to single stars may be as great in the Classes A
to K as in Class B.

8. Kapteyn believes that he is able to divide the individual
stars--those whose proper motions are known--into the two star
streams which he has described; and he finds that the first
stream is rich in the early blue stars, less rich relatively in
yellow stars, and poor in red stars, whereas the second stream
is very poor in early blue stars, rich in yellows, and
relatively very rich in reds. His interpretation is that the
stream-one stars are effectively younger than the stream-two
stars, on the whole. Stream one still abounds in youthful
stars: they grow older and the yellow and red stars will then
predominate. Stream two abounds in stars which were once young,
but are now middle-aged and old.

The eight lines of argument outlined are in harmony to the
effect that there is a sequence of development from nebulae to
red stars.

The extremely red stars are all faint, only a very few being
visible to the naked eye, and these near the limit of vision.
Our knowledge concerning them is relatively limited. That
these, and all stars, will become invisible to our telescopes,
and ultimately be dark unshining bodies, is the logical
conclusion to which the evolutionary processes will lead. As I
have already stated, both Newcomb and Kelvin were inclined to
believe that the major part of gravitational matter in the
universe is already invisible.

It should be said that a few astronomers doubt whether the
order of evolution is so clearly defined as I have outlined it;
in fact, whether we know even the main trend of the
evolutionary process. We occasionally encounter the opinion
that the subject is still so unsettled as not to let us say
whether the helium stars are effectively young or the red stars
are effectively old. Lockyer and Russell have proposed
hypotheses in which the order of evolutionary sequence begins
with comparatively cool red stars and proceeds through the
yellow stars to the very hot blue stars, and thence back
through the yellow stars to cool red stars.

I think the essentially unanimous view of astronomers is to the
effect that the great mass of accumulated evidence favors the
order of evolution which I have described. We are all ready to
admit that there are apparent exceptions to the simple course
laid down, but that these exceptions are revolutionary in
effect, and not hopeless of removal, has not yet, in my
opinion, been established.


A question frequently asked is this: if the yellow and red
stars have been developed from the blue stars, why do not the
thousands of lines in the spectra of the yellow and red stars
show in the spectra of the blue stars? Indeed, why do not the
elements so conspicuously present in the atmosphere of the red
stars show in the spectra of the gaseous nebulae? The answer is
that the conditions in the nebulae and in the youngest stars
are such that only the SIMPLEST ELEMENTS, like hydrogen and
helium, and in the nebulae nebulium, which we think are nearest
to the elemental state of matter, seem to be able to form or
exist in them; and the temperature must lower, or other
conditions change to the conditions existing in the older
stars, before what we may call the more complicated elements
can construct themselves out of the more elemental forms of
matter. The oxides of titanium and of carbon found in the red
stars, where the surface temperatures must be relatively low,
would dissociate themselves into more elemental components and
lose their identity if the temperature and other conditions
were changed back to those of the early helium stars. Lockyer's
name is closely connected with this phenomenon of dissociation.
There is no evidence, to the best of my knowledge, that the
elements known in our Earth are not essentially universal in
distribution, either in the forms which the elements have in
the Earth, or dissociated into simpler forms wherever the
temperatures or other conditions make dissociations possible
and unavoidable.

The meteorites, which have come through the atmosphere to the
Earth's surface, contain at least 25 known terrestrial
elements. That they have not been found thus far to contain all
of our elements is not surprising, for we should have
difficulty in finding a piece of our Earth weighing a few
kilograms which would contain 25 of our elements. We have not
found any elements in meteorites which are unknown to our
chemists. Our comets, which ordinarily show the presence of not
more than three elements, carbon, nitrogen and oxygen, give
certain evidence of sodium in their composition when they
approach fairly near to the Sun; and the great comet of 1882,
when very close to the Sun, developed in its spectrum many
bright lines not previously seen in comet spectra, which
Copeland said were due to iron. That the comets do not show a
greater number of elements is not in the least surprising: they
are not condensed bodies, and we think that their average
temperature is low, too low generally to develop the luminous
vapors of the more refractory elements. If their temperatures,
approximated those which exist in the stars, their spectra
would probably reveal the presence of many of the elements
which exist in the meteorites. Of course the proof of this is


We have said that the evolutionary processes depend primarily
upon the loss of heat. This is to the best of our knowledge a
genuine loss, except as some of the heat rays happen to strike
other celestial bodies. The flow of heat energy from a star
must be essentially continuous, always in one direction from
hotter bodies to colder bodies, or into so-called unending and
heatless space. Temperatures throughout the universe are
apparently moving toward uniformity, at the level of absolute
zero. Now, this uniformity would mean universal stagnation and
death. It is possible to have life and to do work only when
there are differences of temperature between the bodies
concerned: work is done or accompanied by a flow of heat,
always from the hotter to the colder body. We are not aware
that any compensating principle exists. Several students of the
subject, notably Arrhenius, have searched for such a principle,
a fountain of youth so to speak, in accordance with which the
vigor of stellar life should maintain itself from the beginning
of time to the end of time; but I think that nothing
approaching a satisfactory theory has yet been formulated. The
stellar universe seems, from our present point of view, to be
slowly "running down." The processes will not end, however,
when all the heat generable WITHIN the stars shall have been
radiated into an endless space. Every body within the universe,
it is conceivable, could have cooled down to absolute zero, but
the system might still be in its youth. So long as the stars,
whether intensely hot or free from all heat, are rotating
rapidly on their axes or are rushing through space with high
speeds, the system will remain VERY MUCH ALIVE. Collisions or
very close approaches of two stars are bound to occur sooner or
later, whether the stars are hot or cold, and in all such cases
a large share of the kinetic energy--the energy of motion--of
the two bodies will be converted into heat. A collision, under
average stellar conditions, should convert the two stars into a
luminous gaseous nebula, or two or more nebulae, which would
require hundreds or thousands of millions of years to evolve
again into young stars, middle-aged stars, old stars, and stars
absolutely cold. So long as any of these bodies retain motion
with reference to other bodies, they retain the power of
rebirth and another life. Not to go too far into speculative
detail, the general effect of these processes would be the
destruction of relative motions and the gradual decrease in the
number of separate bodies, through coalescence. Assume further,
however, that all existing bodies, widely scattered through the
stellar system, are absolutely cold and absolutely at rest with
reference to each other: the system might even then be only
middle-aged. The mutual gravitations of the bodies would still
be operative. They would pass each other closely, or collide,
under high generated velocities: there would be new nebulae,
and new and vigorous stellar life to continue through other
long ages. The system would not run down until all the kinetic
energy had been converted into heat, and all the heat generable
had been dissipated. This would not occur until all material in
the universe had been combined into one body, or into two
bodies in mutual revolution. However, if there are those who
say that the universe in action is eternal, through the
operation of compensating principles as yet undiscovered, no
man of science is at present equipped to prove the contrary.


The so-called new stars, otherwise known as temporary stars or
novae, present interesting considerations. These are stars
which suddenly flash out at points where previously no star was
known to exist; or, in a few cases, where a faint existing star
has in a few days become immensely brighter. Twenty-nine new
stars have been observed from the year 1572 to date; 19 of them
since 1886, when the photographic dry plate was applied
systematically to the mapping of the heavens, and 15 of the 19
stand to the credit of the Harvard observers. This is an
average of one new star in two years; and as some novae must
come and go unseen it is evident that they are by no means rare
objects. Novae pass through a series of evolutions which have
many points in common; in fact, the ones which have been
extensively studied by photometer and spectrograph have had
histories with so many identities that we are coming to look
upon them as standard products of evolutionary processes. These
stars usually rise to maximum brilliancy in a few days: some of
the most noted ones increased in brightness ten-thousand-fold
in two or three days. All of them fluctuate in brightness
irregularly, and usually in short periods of time. Several
novae have become invisible to the naked eye at the end of a
few weeks. With two or three exceptions, all have become
invisible in moderate-sized telescopes, or have become very
faint, within a few months. Two novae, found very early in
their development, had at first dark line spectra, a night
later bright lines appeared, and a night or two later the
spectra contained the broad radiation and absorption bands
characteristic of all recent novae. After the novae become
fairly faint, the bright lines of the gaseous nebula spectrum
are seen for the first time. These lines increase in relative
brilliancy until the spectra are essentially the same as those
of well-known nebulae, except that the novae lines are broad
whereas the lines of the nebulae are narrow. In a few months or
years the nebular lines diminish in brightness, and the
continuous spectrum develops. Hartmann at Potsdam, and Adams
and Pease with the 60-inch Mount Wilson reflector, have shown
that the spectra of the faint remnants of four originally
brilliant novae now contain some of the bright lines which are
characteristic of Wolf-Rayet stars.[2]

[2] After this lecture was delivered Adams of Mount Wilson
reported that in November, 1914, the chief nebular line (5007A)
and another prominent nebular line (4363A) had entirely
disappeared from the spectrum of Nova Geminorum No. 2, whereas
the second nebular line in the green (4959A) remained strong;
probably a step in progress from the nebular to the Wolf-Rayet

Why the novae suddenly flare up, and what their relations to
other celestial bodies may be, are questions which can not be
regarded as settled. Their distribution on the celestial sphere
is indicated in Figure 25 by the open circles. In this figure
the densest parts of the Milky Way are drawn in outline. All of
the novae have appeared in the Milky Way, with the exception of
five: and these exceptions are worthy of note. One of the five
appeared in the condensed nucleus of the great Andromeda
nebula, not far from its center; another (zeta Centauri) was
located close to the edge of a spiral nebula and quite possibly
in a faint outlying part of the nebula; a third (tau Coronae)
was observed to have a nebulous halo about it at the earliest
stage of its observed existence; a fourth (tau Scorpii)
appeared in a nebula; and the fifth (Nova Ophiuchi No. 2) in
1848 was not extensively observed. The other 24 novae appeared
within the structure of the Milky Way. Keeping the story as
short as possible, a nova is seemingly best explained on the
theory that a dark or relatively dark star, traveling rapidly
through space, has encountered resistance, such as a great
nebula or cloud of particles would afford. While passing
through the cloud the forward face of the star is bombarded at
high velocities by the resisting materials. The surface strata
become heated, the luminosity of the star increases rapidly.
The effect of the bombardment by small particles can be only
skin deep, and the brightness of the star should diminish
rapidly and therefore the spectrum change speedily from one
type to another. The new star of February, 1901, in Perseus,
afforded evidence of great strength on this question. Wolf at
Heidelberg photographed in August an irregular nebulous object
near the nova. Ritchey's photograph of September showed
extensive areas of nebulosity around the star. In October
Perrine and Ritchey discovered that the nebular structure had
apparently moved outward from the nova, from September to
October. Going back to a March 29th photograph taken for a
different purpose, Perrine found an irregular ring of
nebulosity closely surrounding the star. Apparently, the region
was full f nebulosity which is normally invisible to us. The
rushing of the star through this resisting medium made the star
the brightest one in the northern sky for two or three days.
The great wave of light going out from the star when at its
brightest traveled in five weeks as far as the ring of
nebulosity, where, falling upon non-luminous nebulous
materials, it made the ring visible. Continuing its progress,
the wave of light illuminated the material which Wolf
photographed in August, the materials which Ritchey
photographed still farther away in September, and the still
more distant materials which Perrine and Ritchey photographed
in October, November, and later. We were able to see this
material only as the very strong wave of light which left the
star at maximum brightness made the material luminous in
passing. That 24 novae should occur in the Milky Way, where the
stars are most numerous, and where the resisting materials may
preferably prevail, is not surprising; and it should be
repeated that at least three of the five occurring outside of
the Milky Way were located in nebulous surroundings.

The actual collision of two stars would necessarily be too
violent in its effect to let the reduction of brilliancy occur
so rapidly as to cause the disappearance of the nova in a few
weeks or months. The close approach of two stars might
conceivably produce the observed facts, but even this process
seems too violent in its probable results. The chances for the
collision of a rapidly traveling star with an enormously
extended nebulous cloud are vastly greater, and the apparent
mildness of the phenomenon observed is in better harmony with


Although all recent novae have been observed to become
planetary or stellar nebulae, they seem not to remain nebular
for any length of time; they have gone further and become
Wolf-Rayet stars. Whether any or all of the planetary nebulae
that have been known since Herschel's day, and have remained
apparently unchanged in form, have developed from new stars, is
uncertain and doubtful. If they have, the disturbances which
gave them their character must have been violent, such as would
result from full or glancing collisions of two stars, in order
to produce deep-seated effects which change slowly, rather than
surface effects which change rapidly.

Whether the Wolf-Rayet stars have in general been formed from
planetary nebulae is a different question: some of them
certainly have. Wright has recently shown that the stellar
nuclei of planetary nebulae are Wolf-Rayet stars, and he has
formulated several steps in the process whereby the nebulosity
in a planetary eventually condenses into the central star. The
distribution of the planetaries and the Wolf-Rayet stars on the
sphere affords further evidence of a connection. We saw. that
the novae are nearly all in the Milky Way. The irregular, ring,
planetary and stellar nebulae, plotted in Fig. 27, prefer the
Milky Way, but not so markedly. The Wolf-Rayets, without
exception, are located in the Milky Way and in the Magellanic
Clouds, and those in the Milky Way are remarkably near to its
central plane. 107 of these objects are known, 1 is in the
Lesser Magellanic Cloud, and 21 are in the Greater Magellanic
Cloud. The remaining 85 average less than 2 3/4 degrees from
the central plane of the Milky Way.

We are obliged to say that the places of the novae, of the
planetary and stellar nebulae, and of the Wolf-Rayets in the
evolutionary process are not certainly known. If the Wolf-Rayet
stars have developed from the planetaries, the planetaries from
the novae, and the novae have resulted from the close approach
or collision of two stars, or from the rushing of a dark or
faint star through a resisting medium, then the novae,
planetaries and Wolf-Rayets belong to a new and second
generation: they were born under exceptional conditions. The
velocities of the planetary nebulae seem to be an insuperable
difficulty in the way of placing them between the irregular
nebulae and the helium stars. The average radial velocity of 47
planetary nebulae is about 45 km. per second; and, if the
motions of the planetaries are somewhat at random, their
average velocities in space are twice as great, or 90 km. per
second. This is fully seven times the average velocity of the
helium stars, and the helium stars in general, therefore, could
not have come from planetary nebulae. The radial velocities of
only three Wolf-Rayet stars have been observed, and this number
is too small to have statistical value, but the average for the
three is several times as high as the average for the helium
stars. We can not say, I think, that the velocities of any
novae are certainly known.

If the planetaries have been formed from novae, especially the
novae which encountered the fiercest resistance, the high
velocities are in a sense not surprising, for those stars which
travel with abnormally high speeds are the ones whose chances
for collisions with resisting media are best; and, further, the
higher the speeds of collision the more violent the
disturbance. This line of argument also leads to the conclusion
that the novae, planetaries and Wolf-Rayets belong not in
general before the helium stars, but to another generation of
stars. They may, and I think will, develop into a small class
of helium stars having special characteristics; for example,
high velocities.


Immanuel Kant's writings, published principally in 1755, are in
many ways the most remarkable contributions to the literature
of stellar evolution yet made. Curiously, Kant's papers have
not been read by the text-book makers, except in a few cases.
We have already referred to his ideas on the Milky Way and on
comets. In his hypothesis of the origin of the solar system, he
laid emphasis upon the facts that the six known planets revolve
around the Sun from west to east, nearly in the same plane and
nearly in the plane of the Sun's equator; that the then four
known moons of Jupiter, the five known moons of Saturn, and our
moon revolve around these planets from west to east, and nearly
in the same general plane; and that the Sun, our moon and the
planets, so far as known, rotate in the same direction. These
facts, he said, indicate indisputably a common origin for all
the members of the solar system. He expressed the belief that
the materials now composing the solar system were originally
scattered widely throughout the system, and in an elemental
state. This was a half century before Herschel's extensive
observations of nebuae. Kant thought of this elemental matter
as cold, endowed with gravitational power, and endowed
necessarily with some repulsive power, such as exists in gases.
He started his solar system from materials at rest. Most of the
matter, he said, drifted to the center to form the Sun. He
believed that nuclei or centers of attraction formed here and
there throughout the chaotic structure, and that in the course
of ages these centers grew by accretion of surrounding matter
into the present planets and their satellites; and that in some
manner motion in one direction prevailed throughout the whole
system. Kant's explanation of the origin of the ROTATION of the
solar system is unsound and worthless. We now know that such a
cloud of matter, free from rotation, could not of itself
generate rotation; it must get the start from outside forces.
Kant's false reasoning was due in part to the fact that some of
our most important dynamical laws were not yet discovered, in
part to his faulty comprehension of certain dynamical
principles already known, and probably in part to the
unsatisfactory state of chemical knowledge existing at that
date. This was half a century before Dalton's atomic theory of
matter was proposed.

Kant asserted that the processes of combination of surrounding
cold materials would generate heat, and, therefore, that the
resulting planetary masses would assume the liquid form; that
Jupiter and Saturn are now in the liquid state; and that all
the planets will ultimately become cold and solid. This is in
fair agreement with present-day opinion as to the planets, save
that modern astronomers go further in holding that the outer
strata of Jupiter and Saturn, likewise of Uranus and Neptune,
down to a great depth, must still be gaseous. In 1785, after
the principle of heat liberation attending the compression of a
gas had been announced, Kant supplemented his statement of 1755
as to the origin of the Sun's heat. He attributed this to
gravitational action of the Sun upon its own matter, causing it
to contract in size: he said the quantity of heat generated in
a given time would be a function of the Sun's volumes at the
beginning and at the ending of that period of time. This is
substantially the principle which Helmholtz rediscovered and
announced in 1854, and which is now universally accepted--with
the reservation of the past ten years, that radioactive
substances in the Sun may be an additional factor in the

Kant's paper of 1754 enunciated the theory that the Moon always
turns the same face to the Earth because of tidal retardation
of the Moon's rotation by the Earth's gravitational attraction;
and that our Earth tides produced by the Moon will slow down
the Earth's rotation until the Earth will finally turn one
hemisphere constantly to the Moon. This principle was in part
reannounced by Laplace a half century later, and likewise
investigated by Helmholtz in 1854, before Kant's work was

Kant's speculations on a possible destruction and re-birth of
the solar system, on the nature of Saturn's ring, and on the
nature of the zodiacal light are similar in several regards to
present-day beliefs.

Kant wrote:

'I seek to evolve the present state of the universe from the
simplest condition of nature by means of mechanical laws

In 1869 Sir William Thomson, afterwards Lord Kelvin, commented
that Kant's

'attempt to account for the constitution and mechanical origin
of the universe on Newtonian principles only wanted the
knowledge of thermodynamics, which the subsequent experiments
of Davy, Rumford and Joule supplied, to lead to thoroughly
definite explanation of all that is known regarding the present
actions and temperatures of the Earth and of the Sun and all
other heavenly bodies.'

These are, apparently, the enthusiastic comments resulting from
the re-discovery of Kant's papers. A present-day writer would
not speak so decisively of them, but we must all bow in
acknowledgment of Kant's remarkable contributions to our
subject, published when he was but 31 years old.


In 1796, 41 years following Kant's principal contributions,
Laplace published an extensive untechnical volume on general
astronomy. At the end of the volume he appended seven short
notes. The final note, to which he gave the curious title "Note
VII and last," proposed a theory of the origin and evolution of
the solar system which soon came to be known as Laplace's
Nebular Hypothesis. There are several circumstances which
indicate pretty clearly that Laplace was not deeply serious in
proposing this hypothesis:

1. Its method of publication as the final short appendix to a
large volume on general astronomy.

2. He himself said in his note that the hypothesis must be
received "with the distrust with which everything should be
regarded that is not the result of observation or calculation."

3. So far as we know he did not submit the theory to the test
of well-known mathematical principles involved, although this
was his habit in essentially every other branch of astronomy.

4. Laplace, in common with Kant, laid great stress upon the
fact that the satellites all revolve around their planets from
west to east, nearly in the common plane of the solar system;
yet 6 or 7 years before Laplace's publication, Herschel had
shown and published that the two recently discovered satellites
of Uranus were revolving about Uranus in a plane making an
angle of 98 degrees with the common plane of the solar system.
While Laplace might not have known of Uranus's satellites in
1796, on account of existing political conditions, there is no
evidence that he considered or took note of the fact when
making minor changes in his published papers up to the time of
his death in 1827. It is a further interesting comment on
international scientific literature that Laplace died without
learning that Kant had worked in the same field.

Laplace and his contemporary, Sir William Herschel, had been
the most fruitful contributors to astronomical knowledge since
the days of Sir Isaac Newton. Herschel's observations had led
him to speculate as to the evolution of the stars from nebulae,
and as a result interest in the subject was widespread. This
fact, coupled with Laplace's commanding position, caused the
nebular hypothesis to be received with great favor. During an
entire century it was the central idea about which astronomical
thought revolved.

Laplace conceived that the solar system has been evolved from a
gaseous and hot nebula; that the nebulosity extended out
farther than the known planets; and that the entire nebulous
mass was endowed with a slow rotation that was UNIFORM IN
ANGULAR RATE, as in the case of a rotating solid. This gaseous
mass was in equilibrium under the expanding forces of heat and
rotation and the contracting force of gravitation. Loss of heat
by radiation permitted corresponding contraction in size, and
increased speed of rotation. A time came, according to Laplace,
when the nebula was rotating so rapidly that an outer ring of
nebulosity was in equilibrium under centrifugal and
gravitational forces and refused to be drawn closer in toward
the center. This ring, ROTATING AS A SOLID, maintained its
position, while the inner mass contracted farther. Later
another ring was abandoned in the same manner; and so on, ring
after ring, until only the central nucleus was left. Inasmuch
as the nebulosity in the rings was not uniformly distributed,
each ring broke into pieces, and the pieces of each ring, in
the progress of time, condensed into a gaseous mass. The
several large masses formed from the abandoned rings,
respectively, became the planets and satellites of the solar
system. These gaseous masses rotated faster and faster as their
heat radiated into space, they abandoned rings of gaseous
matter just as the original mass had done, and these secondary
rings condensed to form the satellites; save that, in one case,
the ring of gas nearest to Saturn for some reason formed a
solid (!) ring about that planet, instead of condensing into
one or more satellites. Thus, in outline, according to Laplace,
the solar system was formed.

The first half of the nineteenth century found the nebular
hypothesis accepted almost without question, but a tearing-down
process began in the second half of the century, and at present
not much of the original structure remains standing. This is
due in small part to discoveries since Laplace's time, but
chiefly to a more careful consideration of the fundamental
principles involved. We have space to present only a few of the
more salient objections.

1. If the materials of the solar system existed as a gas,
uniformly distributed throughout what we may call the volume of
the system, the density of the gas would be exceedingly low: at
the most, several hundred million times less dense than the air
we breath. Conditions of equilibrium in so rare a medium would
require that the abandonment of the outer parts by the
contracting and more rapidly rotating inner mass should be a
continuous process. Each abandoned element would be abandoned
individually; it would not be vitally affected by the elements
slightly farther out in the structure, nor by the elements
slightly nearer to the center. Successive abandonment of nine
gaseous rings of matter, EACH RING ROTATING AS IF IT WERE A
SOLID STRUCTURE, is unthinkable. The real product of the
cooling process in such a nebula would undoubtedly be something
in the nature of a spiral nebula, in which the matter would
revolve around the nucleus the more rapidly the nearer it was
to the nucleus. If the matter were originally distributed
uniformly throughout the rotating structure, the spiral lines
might not be visible. If it were distributed irregularly, the
spiral form here and there could scarcely fail to be in
evidence to a distant observer.

2. Laplace held that the condensation of each ring would result
in one planet, rotating on its axis from west to east; this
apparently by virtue of the fact that in a ring rotating AS A
SOLID the outer edge travels more rapidly than the inner edge
does, and therefore, the west to east direction of rotation
must prevail in the planetary product. If now, as we firmly
believe, each constituent of such an attenuated ring must
rotate substantially independently of other constituents, those
nearer the inner edge of the ring will possess the higher
speeds of rotation, and the preponderance of kinetic energy in
the inner parts of the ring should give the resulting planetary
condensation a retrograde direction of rotation.

3. According to Laplace the satellites should all revolve
around their primaries from west to east. Eight of the
satellites do not follow this rule.

4. If the materials composing the inner ring of Saturn were
abandoned by the parent planet, as this planet contracted in
size and rotated ever more and more rapidly, then the ring
should revolve about the planet in a period considerably longer
than the planet period. The reverse is the fact. The rotation
period of the equatorial region of the planet itself is 10 h.
14 m., whereas the inner edge of the ring system revolves about
the planet once in about five hours.

5. The inner satellite of Mars revolves once in 7 h. 39 m.,
whereas Mars requires 24 h. 37 m. for one rotation. According
to the Nebular Hypothesis, the period of the satellite should
be the longer.

6. Laplace's hypothesis would seem to require that the orbits
of the planets be circular or very nearly so. The orbits of all
except Venus and Neptune are quite eccentric, and Mercury's
orbit, which should have the nearest approach to circularity,
is by far the most eccentric.

7. If the planetary rings were abandoned by centrifugal action,
we should expect the Sun to be rotating in the principal plane
of the planet system. The major planets, from Venus out to
Neptune, are revolving in nearly a common plane. The Sun,
containing 99 6/7 per cent. of all the material in the system,
has its equator inclined 7 degrees to the planet plane. This
discrepancy is a very serious and I think fatal objection to
Laplace's hypothesis, as Chamberlin has emphasized.

8. Laplace assumed a nebula whose form was a function of its
rotational speed, its gravitation, its internal heat, and,
although he does not so state, of its internal friction. He did
not distribute the matter within the nebula to conform in any
way to the distribution as we observe it to-day, but he let the
entire structure contract, following the loss of heat, until
the maintenance of equilibrium required the successive
abandoning of seven or eight rings. He mentions a central
condensation, but gives no further particulars. Thirty years
ago Fouche established clearly that the condensing of Laplace's
assumed nebula into the present solar system would involve the
violent breaking of the law known as the conservation of moment
of momentum. Fouche proved that a distribution of matter beyond
any conception of the subject by Laplace must be assumed. Fully
96 per cent. must be condensed in the central nucleus AT THE
OUTSET, and not more than 4 per cent. of the total mass must
lie outside of the nucleus and be widely distributed throughout
the volume of the solar system. Chamberlin puts the case very
strongly in another way. If the planet Mercury was abandoned as
a ring of nebulosity, the equatorial velocity of the remaining
central mass must at that time have been in the neighborhood of
45 km. per second, as this is the orbital speed of Mercury. If
the central mass condensed to the present size of the Sun, the
Sun's equatorial velocity of rotation should now be fully 400
km. per second, in accordance with the requirement of the rigid
law of constancy of moment of momentum. The Sun's actual
equatorial velocity is only 2 km. per second!

In several other respects the hypothesis of Laplace, as he
proposed it, fails to account for the facts as they are
observed to exist.

Poincare devoted his unique talents to the evolution problem
shortly before his death. He recognized that the Laplace
hypothesis is not tenable except upon such an assumed
distribution of matter as was defined by Fouche. Accepting this
modification, and extending the hypothesis to involve the
application of tidal interactions at many points throughout the
solar system, Poincare expresses the opinion that the Laplacian
hypothesis, of all those proposed, is still the one which best
accounts for the facts.[3] However, he does not utilize the
hypothesis of rings rotating as solids, for he finds it
necessary to conclude that the planetary masses in the
beginning must have had retrograde rotations. In the large
planetary masses of Jupiter and Saturn, for example, the
materials which form the outer retrograde satellites were
abandoned while the rotations were still retrograde, and when
the diameters of the planetary masses were several scores of
times their present diameters. In these extended masses the Sun
would create tidal waves, and here, as always, such waves would
exert a retarding effect upon the rotations. A time would come,
Poincare thought, when these planets would rotate once in a
revolution; that is, present the same face to the Sun; and this
is in fact a west to east rotation. Further contraction of the
planetary masses would give rise to increasing rotational
speeds in the west to east direction. The materials which form
the inner satellites of Jupiter and Saturn were abandoned
successively after the west to east direction of rotation had
become established. According to modifications of the same
theory, tidal retardation has slowed down Saturn's speed since
the abandonment of the materials which later condensed to form
the inner ring of that planet; or, possibly, the ring materials
encountered resistance after the planet abandoned them, with
the consequence that the ring drew in toward the planet and
increased its speed; and similarly in the case of Mars and its
inner satellite.

[3] Poincare has made the following interesting comments on
Laplace's hypothesis: "The oldest hypothesis is that of
Laplace; but its old age is vigorous and for its age it has not
too many wrinkles. In spite of the objections which have been
urged against it, in spite of the discoveries which astronomers
have made and which would indeed astonish Laplace himself, it
is always standing the strain, and it is the hypothesis which
best explains the facts; it is the hypothesis which responds
best to the question which Laplace endeavored to answer, Why
does order rule throughout the solar system, provided this
order is not due to chance? From time to time a breach opened
in the old edifice (the Laplace hypothesis); but the breach was
promptly repaired and the edifice has not fallen."

To me this modification of the Laplacian hypothesis is
unsatisfactory, for several reasons. To mention only one: if
Jupiter was a large gaseous mass extending out as far as the
8th and 9th satellites, the gaseous body was very highly
attenuated; friction in the outer strata would be essentially a
negligible quantity, and tidal retardation would not be very
effective; and it would be under just these conditions that
loss of heat from the planet should be most rapid and the rate
of increase of retrograde rotation resulting therefrom be
comparatively high. It would seem that the rotation of the
planet in the retrograde direction must have accelerated under
the contractional cause, rather than have decreased and
reversed in direction under an excessively feeble tidal cause.

The recognized weaknesses of Laplace's hypothesis have caused
many other hypotheses to be proposed in the past half century.
The hypotheses of Faye, Lockyer, du Ligondes, See, Arrhenius,
and Chamberlin and Moulton include many of the features of
Kant's or Laplace's hypotheses, but all of them advance and
develop other ideas. It is unfortunate that space limits do not
permit us to discuss the new features of each hypothesis.

(To be continued.)




LASTING peace among the nations of the earth we must regard as
of supreme moment, the discovery of the conditions thereof, as
most worthy of human effort. Physical struggle is no longer
accepted as either a necessary or a desirable means of settling
differences between individuals. Why, then, should it be
tolerated to-day in connection with national disagreements? To
admit the impossibility or the impracticability of universal
peace is to stigmatize our vaunted civilization as a failure.
Surely we will not, can not, humble ourselves by such an
admission until we have exhausted our energies in searching for
the conditions of national amity.

With my whole life I believe in the possibility and value of
worldwide friendliness and cooperation. I am writing to discuss
not the attainability or the merits of peace, but ways of
achieving it; not to criticize present activities on its
behalf, but to indicate the promise of a neglected approach and
to present a program which should, I believe, find its place in
the great "peace movement."

Must peace be achieved and maintained by brute strength,
regardless of sense and sentiment, or may it be gained through
intelligence, humanely used? Must the pathway thereto be paved
with human skulls, builded with infinite suffering and
sacrifice, or may it he charted by scientific inquiry and
builded by the joyous labor of mutual service and helpfulness?
Is it possible, in the light of the history of the races of
man, to doubt that we must place our dependence on intelligence
sympathetically employed, not on physical prowess? To me it
seems that peace must be achieved peacefully, not by the clash
of arms and bloodshed.

But even if we grant that science is our main hope, there
remains a choice of methods. On the one hand, there is the way
of material progress, physical discovery and feverish haste to
apply every new fact to armament; on the other, that of
biological research, social enlightenment, and ever-increasing
human understanding and sympathy.

Firm believers in each of these possible approaches, through
science, to international peace, are at hand. The one group
argues that nations, like individuals, must be controlled in
all supreme crises by fear; the other contends that
civilization has developed in enlightened human sympathy a
higher, a more worthy, and a safer control of behavior.

As a biologist and a believer in the brotherhood of man, I wish
to present the merits of sympathy, as contrasted with fear, and
to plead for larger attention to the biological approach to the
control of international relations. For I am convinced that the
greatest lesson of the present stupendous world-conflict is the
need of thorough knowledge of the laws of individual and social
human behavior. Surely this war clearly indicates that the
study of instinct, and the use of our knowledge for the control
of human relations, is incalculably more important for the
welfare of mankind than is the discovery of new and ever more
powerful explosives or the building of increasingly terrible
engines of destruction.

During the last half-century the physical sciences,
technologies, arts and industries, have made marvelous
advances. At enormous cost of labor and material resources
there have been discovered and perfected means of destroying
life and property at once so effective and so terrible to
contemplate that preparedness for war seemed a safe guarantee
of peace. But who is there now to insist, against the evidence
of blood-drenched Europe, that material progress, physical
discovery, and armament based thereupon, assure international

Only if one of the nations should discover, and guard as its
secret, some diabolically horrible means of destroying human
life and property by wholesale and over materially unbridged
distances, can armaments even temporarily put an end to war. In
such event--and it is by no means an improbability--the whole
world might suddenly be made to bow in terror before the will
of the all-powerful nation. Before this approaching crisis, can
we do less than earnestly pray that the translation of physical
progress into armament may be halted until the brotherhood of
man has been further advanced? Dare we stop to contemplate what
would happen to-morrow if Germany, with half the civilized
world arrayed against her, should come into possession of some
imponderable, and to the untutored mind mysterious, means of
directing her torpedoes, exploding magazines, mines, shells
from distant bases? Undoubtedly we are close upon the
employment of certain vibrations for this deadly purpose. Shall
we veer in time and take a safer course, or are we doomed to
the inevitable?

For the certain result of pushing forward relentlessly on the
path of preparation for war--in the name of peace--is the
dominance of a single nation and the destruction or subjugation
of all others. This is as inevitable as is death. If we would
preserve and foster racial and national diversity of traits,
promote social individuality as we so eagerly foster the
diversity of selves, we must speedily focus attention upon
human nature and seek that knowledge of it which shall enable
us to control it wisely rather than to destroy it ruthlessly.

Even were I able to do so, I should in no degree belittle the
achievements of the physical sciences and their technologies,
for I believe whole-heartedly in their value, and long for the
steady increase of our power to control our environment. But
when these achievements are offered as means of creating or
maintaining certain desired conditions of individual and social
life, I must insist that other knowledge is essential--nay,
more essential--than that of the physicist or chemist.
Knowledge, namely, of life itself.

Most briefly, the situation may thus be described. In peace and
in war there are two large, complex and intricate groups of
facts to be dealt with by those who seek the welfare of man.
The one group comprises the phenomena of physical nature as the
condition of life--environment; the other is constituted by the
phenomena of life and the relations of lives. Those who
sincerely believe in preparedness for war as a preventive
measure, misconceive and attempt to misuse the emotion of fear
and its modes of expression. It is as though we should strive
tirelessly to develop machinery and methods for educating our
children, the while ignorant of the laws of child development
and branding as of no practical importance the fundamentals of
human nature.

To nations no more than to individuals is it given to live by
fear alone. By it a nation may become dominant, and diversity
of body, mind, and ideals be eradicated. To base our
civilization upon fear entails uniformity, monotony of life;
the sacrifice of peoples for the unduly exalted traits and
national ideals of a single homogeneous social group--a single
all-powerful nation. Knowledge of life, and the sympathy for
one's fellow men which springs from it, must control the world
if nations are to live in peaceful and mutually helpful
relations. If life, whether of the individual or of the social
group, is to be controlled, it must be through intimate
knowledge of life, not through knowledge of something else. The
world must be ruled by sympathy, based upon understanding,
insight, appreciation. This is my prophecy, this my faith and
my present thesis.

Material as contrasted with purely intellectual or spiritual
progress is the pride of our time. We worship technology as
reared upon physics and chemistry. But what is our gain, in
this progress, so long as we continue to use one another as
targets? Would it not be wiser, more far-sighted, more humane,
more favorable to the development of universal peace and
brotherhood, to give a large share of our time and substance to
the search for the secrets of life? As compared with the
physical sciences, the biological departments of inquiry are,
in general, backward and ill-supported. Why? Because their
tremendous importance is not generally recognized, and, still
more, because the control of inanimate nature as promised by
physical discovery and its applications appeals irresistibly
both to our imagination and to our greed. We long for
peace--because we are afraid of war--we long for the perfecting
of individual and social life, but much more intensely and
effectively we long for wealth, power and pleasure.

What I have already said and now repeat in other words is that
if we really desired above anything attainable on earth the
lasting peace of nations, we should diligently foster and
tirelessly pursue the sciences of life and seek to perfect and
exalt the varied arts and technologies which should be based
upon them. Experimental zoology and genetics; physiology and
hygiene; genetic psychology and education; anthropology and
ethnology; sociology and economics, would be held in as high
esteem and as ardently furthered as are the various physical
sciences and their technologies.

Does it not seem reasonable to claim that human behavior may be
intelligently controlled or directed only in the light of
intimate and exhaustive knowledge of the organism, its
processes, and its relations to its environment? If this be
true, how pitiably, how shamefully, inadequate is our knowledge
even of ourselves! How few are those who have a sound, although
meager, knowledge of the laws of heredity, of the primary facts
of human physiology, of the principles of hygiene, of the chief
facts and laws of mental life, including the fundamental
emotions and their corresponding instinctive modes of action,
the modifiability or educability of the individual and the
important relations of varied sorts of experience and conduct,
the laws of habit, the nature and role of the sentiments, the
unnumbered varieties of memory and ideation, the chief facts of
social life and their relations to individual experience and
behavior. Not one person in a thousand has a knowledge of life
and its conditions equal in adequacy for practical demands to
his knowledge of those aspects of physical nature with which he
is concerned in earning a livelihood. Even those of us who have
dedicated our lives to the study of life are humble before our
ignorance. But with a faith which can not be shaken, because we
have seen visions and dreamed dreams, we insist that the
knowledge which we seek and daily find is absolutely essential
for the perfecting of educational methods; for the development
of effective systems of bodily and mental hygiene; for the
discovery, fostering and maintenance of increasingly profitable
social relations and organizations. In a word, we believe that
biology, of all sciences, can and must lead us in the path of
social as contrasted with merely material progress; can and
ultimately will so alter the relations of nations that war
shall be as impossible as is peace to-day.

Fortunately the biologist may depend, in his efforts to further
the study of all aspects of life, not upon faith and hope
alone, but also upon works, for already physiology and
psychology have transformed our educational practices; and the
medical sciences given us a great and steadily increasing
measure of control over disease.

At least two men, as different in intellectual equipment,
habits of mind, and methods of inquiry as well could be, the
one an American, the other an Englishman, have heralded the
broadly comparative and genetic study of mind and behavior--let
us call it Genetic Psychology--as the promise of a new era for
civilization, because the essential condition of the
intelligent and effective regulation of life.

The one of these prophets among biologists, President G.
Stanley Hall, has lived to see his faith in the practical
importance of the intensive study of childhood and adolescence
justified by radical reforms in school and home. Hall should be
revered by all lovers of youth as the apostle to adolescents.
The other, Professor William McDougall, has done much to
convince the thinking world that all of the social sciences and
technologies must be grounded upon an adequate genetic
psychology--a genetic psychology which shall take as full and
intelligent account of behavior as of experience; of the life
of the ant, monkey, ape as of that of man; of the savage as of
civilized man; of the infant, child, adolescent as of the
adult; of the moron, imbecile, idiot, insane, as of the normal
individual; of social groups as of isolated selves. It is to
McDougall we owe a most effective sketch--in his introduction
to Social Psychology of the primary human emotions in their
relations to instinctive modes of behavior.

Hall, McDougall and such sociologists--lamentably few, I
fear--as Graham Wallas would agree that for the attainment of
peace we must depend upon some primary human instinct. I
venture the prediction that no one of them would select fear as
the safe basis. Instead, they surely would unite upon sympathy.

Among animals preparedness for struggles is a conspicuous cause
of strife. The monkey who stalks about among his fellows with
muscles tense, tail erect, teeth bared, bespeaking expectancy
of and longing for a fight, usually provokes it. We may not
safely argue that lower animals prove the value of preparedness
for war as a preventive measure! Among them, as among human
groups, the only justification of militarism is protection and
aggression. Preparedness for strife is provocative rather than
preventive thereof.

As individual differences, and resulting struggles, are due to
ignorance, misunderstanding, lack of the basis for intelligent
appreciation of ideals, motives and sympathy, so among nations
knowledge of bodily and mental traits, of aims, aspirations,
and national ideals fosters the feeling of kinship and favors
the instinctive attitude of sympathetic cooperation.

Every student of living things knows that to understand the
structure, habits, instincts, of any creature is to feel for
and with it. Even the lowliest type of organism acquires
dignity and worth when one becomes familiar with its life.
Children in their ignorance and lack of understanding are
incredibly cruel. So, likewise, are nations. The treatment of
inferior by superior races throughout the ages has been
childishly cruel, unjust, stupid, inimical to the best
interests not only of the victims, but also of mankind. This
has been so, not so much by reason of bad intentions, although
selfishness has been at the root of immeasurable injustice, but
primarily because of the utter lack of understanding and
sympathy. To see a savage is to despise or fear him, to know
him intimately is to love him. The same law holds of social
groups, be they families, tribes, nations or races. They can
cooperate on terms of friendly helpfulness just in the measure
in which they know one another's physical, mental and social
traits and appreciate their values, for in precisely this
measure are they capable of understanding and sympathizing with
one another's ideals.

Selfishness, the essential condition of individualism and
nationalism, must be supplanted by the sympathy of an all
inclusive social consciousness and conscience if lasting peace
is to be attained.

To further the end of this transformation of man we should
become familiar with the inborn springs to action, those
fundamental tendencies which we call instincts, for we live
more largely than is generally supposed by instinct and less by
reason. All of the organic cravings, hungers, needs, should be
thoroughly understood so that they may be effectively used.
And, finally, the laws of intellect must be at our command if
we are to meet the endlessly varying and puzzling situations of
life profitably and with the measure of adequacy our reason
would seem to justify.

Clearly, then, the least, and the most, we can do in the
interest of peace is to provide for the study of life, but
especially for the shamefully neglected or imperfectly
described phenomena of behavior and mind, in the measure which
our national wealth, our intelligence and our technical skill
make possible. For one thing, it is open to us to establish
institutes for the thorough study of every aspect of behavior
and mind in relation to structure and environment, comparable
with such institutions for social progress as the Rockefeller
Institute for Medical Research. The primary function of such
centers for the solution of vital problems should be the
comparative study, from the genetic, developmental, historical,
point of view of every aspect of the functional life of living
things, to the end that human life may be better understood and
more successfully controlled. Facts of heredity, of behavior,
of mind, of social relations, should alike be gathered and
related, and thus by the observation of the most varied types,
developmental stages, and conditions of living creatures there
should be developed a science of behavior and consciousness
which should ultimately constitute a safe basis for the social
sciences, for all forms of social endeavor, and for universal
and permanent peace.

I submit that such centers of research as the psycho-biological
institute I have so imperfectly described are sorely needed.
For it is obvious that the future of our species depends in
large measure upon how we develop the biological sciences and
what use we make of our knowledge. I further submit, and
therewith I rest my case, that familiarity with living things
breeds sympathy not contempt, and that sympathy in turn
conditions justice.

May it be granted us to work intelligently, effectively,
tirelessly for world-wide peace and service. not by the
suppression of racial and national diversities, the leveling of
the mass to a deadly sameness, but through steadily increasing
appreciation of racial and national traits. May the world, even
sooner than we dare to hope, be ruled by sympathy instead of by



THE Missouri Botanical Garden has recently celebrated the
twenty-fifth anniversary of its foundation and the New York
Botanical Garden its twentieth anniversary. Within these short
periods these gardens have taken rank among the leading
scientific institutions of the world. Botanical gardens were
among the first institutions to be established for scientific
research; indeed Parkinson, the "botanist royal" of England, on
the title page of his book of 1629, which we here reproduce,
depicts the Garden of Eden as the first botanical garden and
one which apparently engaged in scientific expeditions, for it
includes plants which must have been collected in America.
However this may be, publicly supported gardens for the
cultivation of plants of economic and esthetic value existed in
Egypt, Assyria, China and Mexico and beginning in the medieval
period had a large development in Europe there being at the
beginning of the seventeenth century botanical gardens devoted
to research in Bologna, Montpellier, Leyden, Paris, Upsala and
elsewhere. An interesting survey of the history of botanical
gardens is given in a paper by Dr. A W. Hill assistant director
of the Kew Gardens, prepared for the celebration of the
Missouri Garden, from which we have taken the illustration from
Parkinson and the pictures of Padua and Kew.

The papers presented at the celebration have been published in
a handsome volume. It includes addresses by a number of
distinguished botanists, though owing to the war several of the
foreign botanists were unable to be present. Dr. George T.
Moore, director of the garden, made in his address of welcome a
brief statement in regard to its origin in the private garden
and by the later endowment of Mr. Henry Shaw. Mr. Shaw came to
this country from England in 1818, and with a small stock of
hardware began business in one room which also served as
bedroom and kitchen. Within twenty years he had acquired a
fortune and retired from active business to devote the
remaining forty-nine years of his life to travel and to the
management of a garden surrounding his country-home on the
outskirts of St. Louis. In 1859 he erected a small museum and
library, and in 1866 Mr. James Gurney was brought to this
country as head gardener. Mr. Shaw died in 1889, leaving his
estate largely for the establishment of the Missouri Botanical
Garden, but providing also for the Henry Shaw School of Botany
of Washington University and a park for the city. With this
liberal endowment constantly increasing as the real estate
becomes more productive, Dr. William Trelease, the first
director, and Dr. George T. Moore, the present director, have
conducted an institution not only of value to the city of St.
Louis but largely contributing to the advance of botanical

The New York Botanical Garden, largely through the efforts of
Dr. N. L. Britton, the present director was authorized by the
New York legislature in 1891. The act of incorporation provided
that when the corporation created should have secured by
subscription a sum not less than $250,000 the city was
authorized to set aside for the garden as much as 250 acres
from one of the public parks and to expend one half million
dollars for the construction and equipment of the necessary
buildings. The conditions were met in 1895, and the institution
has since grown in its land, and its buildings, in its
collections and in its herbaria, so that, in association with
the department of botany of Columbia University, it now rivals
in its material equipment and in the research work accomplished
any botanical institution in the world.


THERE will be held at Washington from Monday, December 27, to
Saturday, January 9, the second Pan-American Scientific
Congress, authorized by the first congress held in Santiago,
Chili, six years previously. This was one of the series of
congresses previously conducted by the republics of Latin
America. The Washington congress, which is under the auspices
of the government of the United States, with Mr. William
Phillips, third assistant secretary of state, as chairman of
the executive committee, will meet in nine sections, which,
with the chairmen, are as follows:

I. Anthropology, Wm. H. Holmes.

II. Astronomy, Meteorology, and Seismology, Robert S. Woodward.

III. Conservation of Natural Resources, Agriculture, Irrigation
and Forestry, George M. Rommel.

IV. Education, P. P. Claxton.

V. Engineering, W. H. Bixby.

VI. International Law, Public Law, and Jurisprudence, James
Brown Scott.

VII. Mining and Metallurgy, Economic Geology, and Applied
Chemistry, Hennen Jennings.

VIII. Public Health and Medical Science, Wm. C. Gorgas.

IX. Transportation, Commerce, Finance, and Taxation, L. S.

Each section is divided further into subsections, of which
there are forty-five, each with a special committee and
program. Several of the leading national associations of the
United States, concerned with the investigation of subjects of
pertinent interest to some of the sections of the congress,
have received and accepted invitations from the executive
committee of congress to meet in Washington at the same time
and hold one or more joint sessions with a section or
subsection of corresponding interest. Thus the nineteenth
International Congress of Americanists will meet in Washington
during the same week with the Pan-American Scientific Congress,
and joint conferences will be held for the discussion of
subjects of common interest to members of the two organizations

As an example of the wide scope of the congress we may quote
the ten subsections into which the section of education is
divided. Each of these subsections is under a committee of men
distinguished in educational work and men of eminence have been
invited to take part in the proceedings. The subjects proposed
for discussion by each of these sections are:

Elementary Education: To what extent should elementary
education be supported by local taxation, and to what extent by
state taxation? What should be the determining factors in the
distribution of support? Secondary Education: What should be
the primary and what the secondary purpose of high school
education? To what extent should courses of study in the high
school be determined by the requirements for admission to
college, and to what extent by the demands of industrial and
civic life? University Education: Should universities and
colleges supported by public funds be controlled by independent
and autonomous powers, or should they be controlled directly by
central state authority? Education of Women: To what extent is
coeducation desirable in elementary schools, high schools,
colleges and universities? Exchange of Professors and Students
between Countries: To what extent is an exchange of students
and professors between American republics desirable? What is
the most effective basis for a system of exchange? What plans
should be adopted in order to secure mutual recognition of
technical and professional degrees by American Republics?
Engineering Education: To what extent may college courses in
engineering be profitably supplemented by practical work in the
shop? To what extent may laboratory work in engineering be
replaced through cooperation with industrial plants? Medical
Education: What preparation should be required for admission to
medical schools? What should he the minimum requirements for
graduation? What portion of the faculty of a medical school
should be required to give all their time to teaching and
investigation? What instruction may best be given by physicians
engaged in medical practice? Agricultural Education: What
preparation should be required for admission to state and
national colleges of agriculture? To what extent should the
courses of study in the agricultural college be theoretical and
general, and to what extent practical and specific? To what
extent should the curriculum of any such college be determined
by local conditions? Industrial Education: What should be the
place of industrial education in the school system of the
American republics? Should it be supported by public taxation?
Should it be considered as a function of the public school
system? Should it be given in a separate system under separate
control? How and to what extent may industrial schools
cooperate with employers of labor, Commercial Education: How
can a nation prepare in the most effective manner its young men
for a business career that is to be pursued at home or in a
foreign country.


WE record with regret the death at the age of ninety-two of
Henri Fabre, the distinguished French entomologist and author;
of William Henry Hoar Hudson, late professor of mathematics at
King's College, London; of Dr. Ugo Schiff, professor of
chemistry at Florence; of Susanna Phelps Gage, known for her
work on comparative anatomy; of Charles Frederick Holder, the
California naturalist, and of Dr. Austin Flint, a distinguished
physician and alienist of New York City.

DR. RAY LYMAN WILBUR, professor of medicine, has been elected
president of Leland Stanford Junior University. He will on
January 1 succeed Dr John Caspar Branner, who undertook to
accept the presidency for a limited period on the retirement of
Dr. David Starr Jordan, now chancellor of the university. Dr.
Wilbur graduated from the academic department of Stanford
University in 1896.

AT the Manchester meeting of the British Association for the
Advancement of Science, Sir Arthur J. Evans, F.R S., the
archeologist, honorary keeper of the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford,
was elected president for next year's meeting, to be held at
Newcastle-on-Tyne. The meeting of 1917 will be held at

DR. MAX PLANCK, professor of physics at Berlin, and Professor
Hugo von Seeliger, director of the Munich Observatory, have
been made knights of the Prussian order pour le merite. Dr.
Ramon y Cajal, professor of histology at Madrid, and Dr. C. J.
Kapteyn, professor of astronomy at Groningen, have been
appointed foreign knights of this order.

MR. JACOB H. SCHIFF, a member of the board of trustees of
Barnard College and its first treasurer, has given $500,000 to
the college for a woman's building. It will include a library
and additional lecture halls as well as a gymnasium, a lunch
room and rooms for students' organizations.

BY the will of the late Dr. Dudley P. Allen, formerly professor
of surgery in the Western Reserve University, $200,000 has been
set aside as a permanent endowment fund for the Cleveland
Medical Library.






THE construction of the Panama Canal was made possible because
it was shown that yellow fever, like malaria, could be spread
only by the bites of infected mosquitoes.

The same discovery, which has been repeatedly referred to as
the greatest medical achievement of the twentieth century, was
the means of stamping out the dreaded scourge in Cuba, as well
as in New Orleans, Rio de Janeiro, Vera Cruz, Colon, Panama and
other Cities in America.

This article is intended to narrate the motives that led up to
the investigation and also the manner in which the work was
planned, executed and terminated. No names are withheld and the
date of every important event is given, so that an interested
reader may be enabled to follow closely upon the order of
things as they occurred and thus form a correct idea of the
importance of the undertaking, the risk entailed in its
accomplishment and how evenly divided was the work among those
who, in the faithful performance of their military duties,
contributed so much for the benefit of mankind; the magnitude
of their achievement is of such proportions, that it loses
nothing of its greatness when we tear away the halo of apparent
heroism that well-meaning but ignorant historians have thrown
about some of the investigators.

The whole series of events, tragic, pathetic, comical and
otherwise, took place upon a stage made particularly fit by
nature and the surrounding circumstances.

Columbia Barracks, a military reservation, garrisoned by some
fourteen hundred troops, distant about eight miles from the
city of Havana, the latter, suffering at the time from an
epidemic of yellow fever, which the application of all sanitary
measures had failed to check or ameliorate and finally, our
experimental camp (Camp Lazear), a few army tents, securely
hidden from the road leading to Marianao, and safeguarded
against intercourse with the outside world; the whole setting
portentously silent and gloriously bright in the glow of
tropical sunlight and the green of luxuriant vegetation.

Two members of a detachment of four medical officers of the
United States Army, on the morning of August 31, 1900, were
busily examining under microscopes several glass slides
containing blood from a fellow officer who, since the day
before, had shown symptoms of yellow fever; these men were Drs.
Jesse W. Lazear and myself; our sick colleague was Dr. James
Carroll, who presumably had been infected by one of our
"experiment mosquitoes."

It is very difficult to describe the feelings which assailed us
at that moment; a sense of exultation at our apparent success
no doubt animated us; regret, because the results had evidently
brought a dangerous illness upon our coworker and with it all
associated a thrill of uncertainty for the reason of the yet
insufficient testimony tending to prove the far-reaching truth
which we then hardly dared to realize.

As the idea that Carroll's fever must have been caused by the
mosquito that was applied to him four days before became fixed
upon our minds, we decided to test it upon the first non-immune
person who should offer himself to be bitten; this was of
common occurrence and taken much as a joke among the soldiers
about the military hospital. Barely fifteen minutes may have
elapsed since we had come to this decision when, as Lazear
stood at the door of the laboratory trying to "coax" a mosquito
to pass from one test-tube into another, a soldier came walking
by towards the hospital buildings; he saluted, as it is
customary in the army upon meeting an officer, but, as Lazear
had both hands engaged, he answered with a rather pleasant
"Good morning." The man stopped upon coming abreast, curious no
doubt to see the performance with the tubes, and after gazing
for a minute or two at the insects he said: "You still fooling
with mosquitoes, Doctor?" "Yes," returned Lazear, "will you
take a bite?" "Sure I ain't scared of 'em," responded the man.
When I heard this, I left the microscope and stepped to the
door, where the short conversation had taken place; Lazear
looked at me as though in consultation; I nodded assent, then
turned to the soldier and asked him to come inside and bare his
forearm. Upon a slip of paper I wrote his name while several
mosquitoes took their fill; William E. Dean, American by birth,
belonging to Troop B, Seventh Cavalry; he said that he had
never been in the tropics before and had not left the military
reservation for nearly two months. The conditions for a test
case were quite ideal.

I must say we were in great trepidation at the time; and well
might we have been, for Dean's was the first indubitable case
of yellow fever about to be produced experimentally by the bite
of purposely infected mosquitoes. Five days afterwards, when he
came down with yellow fever and the diagnosis of his case was
corroborated by Dr. Roger P. Ames, U. S. Army, then on duty at
the hospital, we sent a cablegram to Major Walter Reed,
chairman of the board, who a month before had been called to
Washington upon another duty, apprising him of the fact that
the theory of the transmission of yellow fever by mosquitoes,
which at first was doubted so much and the transcendental
importance of which we could then barely appreciate, had indeed
been confirmed.


Other infectious diseases, tuberculosis, for instance, may
cause a greater death-rate and bring about more misery and
distress, even to-day, than yellow fever has produced at any
one time; but no disease, except possibly cholera or the
plague, is so tragic in its development, so appalling in its
action, so devastating in its results, nor does any other make
greater havoc than yellow fever when it invades non-immune or
susceptible communities.

For two centuries, at least, the disease has been known to
exist endemically, that is, more or less continuously, in most
of the Mexican Gulf ports, extending its ravages along the West
India Islands and the cities of the Central and the South
American coast.

In the United States it has made its appearance in epidemic
form as far north as Portsmouth, N. H. At Philadelphia in 1793,
more than ten per cent. of the entire population died of yellow
fever. Other cities, like Charleston, S. C., suffered more than
twenty epidemics in as many summers, during the eighteenth
century. In the city of New Orleans, the epidemic which
developed in the summer of 1853 caused more than 7,000 deaths.
Later, in 1878, yellow fever invaded 132 towns in the United
States, producing a loss of 15,932 lives out of a total number
of cases which reached to more than 74,000: New Orleans alone
suffered a mortality of 4,600 at that time. Recently (1905),
this city withstood what is to be hoped shall prove its last
invasion, which, thanks to the modern methods employed in its
suppression, based upon the new mosquito doctrine, only
destroyed about 3,000 lives.

It is by contemplating this awful record, and much more there
is which for the sake of brevity I leave unstated, that one
realizes the boon to mankind which the successful researches of
the Army Board have proved. The work of prevention, the only
one that may be considered effective when dealing with the
epidemic diseases, was entirely misguided with regard to yellow
fever until 1901: the sick were surrounded by precautions which
were believed most useful in other infectious diseases, the
attendants were often looked upon as pestilential, and so
treated, in spite of the fact that evidence from the early
history of the disease clearly pointed to the apparent
harmlessness even of the patients themselves. All this
notwithstanding, cases continued to develop, in the face of
shotgun quarantine even, until the last non-immune inhabitant
of the locality had been either cured or buried.

The mystery which accompanied the usual course of an epidemic,
the poison creeping from house to house, along one side of a
street, seldom, crossing the road, spreading sometimes around
the whole block of houses before appearing in another
neighborhood, unless distinctly carried there by a visitor to
the infected zone who himself became stricken, all this series
of peculiar circumstances was a never-ending source of
discussion and investigation.

In the year 1900, Surgeon H. R. Carter, of the then Marine
Hospital Service, published a very interesting paper calling
attention to the interval of time which regularly occurred
between the first case of yellow fever in a given community and
those that subsequently followed; this was never less than two
weeks, a period of incubation extending beyond that usually
accorded to other acute infectious diseases. The accuracy of
these observations has later been confirmed by the mosquito
experiments hereinafter outlined.


One may well believe that such a scourge as yellow fever could
not have been long neglected by medical investigators, and so
we find that from the earliest days, when the germ-theory of
disease took its proper place in modern science, a search for
the causative agent of this infection was more or less actively

Men of the highest attainments in bacteriology engaged in
numerous attempts to isolate the yellow fever microbe:
unfortunately not a few charlatans took advantage of the dread
and terror which the disease inspires, to proclaim their
discoveries and their specific CURES; one of these obtained
wealth and honor in one of the South American republics for
presumably having discovered the "germ" and prepared a
so-called vaccination which was expected to eradicate the
disease from that country, but for many years after the foreign
population continued to suffer as before and the intensity and
the spread of yellow fever remained unabated, although
thousands of "preventive inoculations" were made every month.

Geo. M. Sternberg in 1880, then an army surgeon, was directly
instrumental in exposing the swindle that was being
perpetrated, putting an end, after the most painstaking
investigation, to all the claims to discovery of the "germ" of
yellow fever that had been made by several medical men in
Spanish America. The experience which he obtained during a
scientific excursion through Mexico, Cuba and South America
gave him a wonderful insight as to the difficulties one has to
contend with in such work and made him realize the importance
of special laboratory training for such undertaking. It is
interesting to note that, as surgeon general of the U. S. Army,
twenty years after, General Sternberg chose and appointed the
men who constituted the yellow fever board, in Cuba.

The year before the Spanish-American war, an Italian savant,
who had obtained a well-deserved reputation as bacteriologist
while working in the Institute Pasteur of Paris, came out with
the announcement from Montevideo, Uruguay, that he had actually
discovered the much-sought-for cause of yellow fever; his
descriptions of the methods employed, though not materially
different from those followed by Sternberg many years before,
bore the imprint of truth and his experimental inoculations had
apparently been successful. Sanarelli--that is his name--for
about two years was the "hero of the hour," yet his claims have
been proved absolutely false.

The question of the identity of his "germ" was first taken up
by the writer under instructions from General Sternberg: during
the Santiago campaign I had opportunity to autopsy a
considerable number of yellow fever cases and, following
closely upon Sanarelli's directions, only three times out of
ten could his bacillus be demonstrated; at almost the same
time, Drs. Reed and Carroll, in Washington, were carrying out
experiments which showed that Sanarelli's bacillus belonged to
the hog-cholera group of bacteria and thus when found in yellow
fever cadavers could play there only a secondary role as far as
the infection is concerned.

Unfortunately, two investigators belonging to the U. S. Marine
Hospital Service, Drs. Wasdin and Gleddings, were, according to
their claims, corroborating Sanarelli's findings: there was
nothing to do but that the investigation should continue, and
so I was sent by General Sternberg to Havana in December, 1898,
with instructions and power to do all that might be necessary
to clear up the matter. Wasdin and Geddings had preceded me;
the work carried us through the summer of 1899; we frequently
investigated the same cases; I often autopsied bodies from
which we took the same specimens and made the same cultures, in
generally the same kind of media, and finally we rendered our
reports to our respective departments, Wasdin and Geddings
affirming that Sanarelli's bacillus was present in almost all
the cases, while I denied that it had such specific character
and showed its occurrence in cases not yellow fever. A virulent
epidemic which raged in the city of Santiago and vicinity
during 1899 afforded me abundant material for research.

In the meantime the city of Havana was being rendered sanitary
in a way which experience had taught would have overcome any
bacterial infection, and, in fact, the diseases of filth, such
as dysentery, tuberculosis, children's complaints and others,
decreased in a surprising manner, while yellow fever seemed to
have been little affected if at all.

Evidently, a more thorough overhauling of the matter was
necessary to arrive at the truth, and while the question of
Sanarelli and his claims was practically put aside,
Surgeon-General Sternberg, recognizing the importance of the
work before us and that its proportions were such as to render
the outcome more satisfactory by the cooperation of several
investigators in the same direction, wisely decided to create a
board for the purpose and so caused the following to be issued:

Special Orders No. 122
WASHINGTON, May 24, 1900


34. By direction of the Secretary of War, a board of medical
officers is appointed to meet at Camp Columbia, Quemados, Cuba,
for the purpose of pursuing scientific investigations with
reference to the infectious diseases prevalent on the Island of
Cuba. Detail for the board:

Major Walter Reed, surgeon, U. S. Army;

Book of the day: