Newspaper Page Text
* jr. n. uoiniLuss noruooD
lie CcUbratc* Hi* Seventieth Birth
day This JJYfJfc.
Cy m. FVaak MrClnn*.
Aafctjbul*. Ohio. M LM.-Kvery now and
the* Uliam Deaa Howells, the novelist, drops
into the little town of Jefferson, in this county.
and .-ntertne the office of the old -Asbtabula
' - ; ■■ rolls U p his sleeves, takes a
printer's .tick in hand and Bets a few para
graphs of copy just to *cc if he has forgotten
how. He never has forgotten.
Mr. Howeil* began bis career at a printer's
<-ase on his father's newspaper. At night, by
the aid of his father's library and an old fash
ioned lamp, he studied several languages. "While
r** a mere boy be translated a Spanish story
rutting It in type without first writing out the
As a printer In his 'teeriF his work uixm the
advertising pages was characterized by indi
viduality and attractiveness. He gay* to -The
Ashtabula Sentinel" an unusual but neat ap
pearance by setting all the advertisements in
type no larger than long primer. In ordinary
composition he could set nve thousand ems in
a i.>r.noon. while the average printer of the
period considered that a full day's, work. Mr.
W. O. HOWELLS AT TWENTY-ONE.
Uri-src !•*■ knowledge of typesetting enables him
in i-orreoting proofs to this day to have rtn <yo
•■ ikfoaj H•* coneclfooa as easy U pS)SJ !•■ fur
th< compositor. Ir. re.iding a book, trhicti be
might otherwise greatly enjoy, if the ppacing
WOt I'ark Daea fla Mil <.■< nfunn to his i<3<-as of
good workmanship it greatly annoy him. Mr.
BbveOaii Bad Otamif eflSofi «as m the ape of
• • -Ahrrs ho produced an essay on "Human
I -if* ."' sottiiifr it up at the .-. as in thr- i ri
rt.irir*- of Oh Sjiar.iFh FXory. without first writ
ing it <>ut_ This was printt-d in his father's
Sixty-nine years agrt William F»ean nowolls
wa,<= l>orn. on Iftnicfe 1. 5n a Fmall cne slory
borne at Martin's FVrry. <"»hio. Pome time later
t!ie h _:<ie was iHlrafVi to make way for the
trafk* of the Cleveland and Pittsburg way.
His father. William Cooj>er Howdls, v.a.s born
in tlrtat Britain, and Mas of Welsh doscf>nt-
F"'«r a time William OooDer Howdls was Unitfd
P'.a^' s Consul at QiK'bet 1 . and fur ■ numb'-r of
y<-ars was official reporter of the <'»'hio Ix-gislat
ure. w • ■•: William Dean «as only throe years
oid tli<- ••ntir^ family moved t" Hamilton, where
ilr BoweUfl easjaajed r. publishing "Tbe Hamil
ton li.t. '.liprnror." In this vicinity the earlier
bqybood of the iwvclfst ni spent, and It was
Uk •• •.;.:it tlie scents of his bc»ok, **A Boy's
T"«;,"' acre la: 1. The f:ithf-r r,' >:t purchased a
part ititerctit in "The Ashiutiula .vtiiiel." I^^ter
t! paper «ras moved from Ashtabula to the lit
tJ.- I . » cv ti af J. -ffiTSon. tbe county seat of Ash-
Luijula. Coui.ty, itnd William Coojkt Howells be
cam« sole owner. The printing office where
William Dean Howells was employed as a lad
i* itO standing, anl is priw-d as a relic. "The
Sentinel" now being published in a larger build
ing The old Howrlls homestead in Jefferson is
to-day oorupi**! by a najlMV. whose name is
also William Dean Howells. William Cooper
Howells for tv.'!.ty y«-ars edited '"The Sentinel."
and then bis son Josr-ph took up the work, and
has continued it ever wncr-.
Not long ago. William r>ean came from
♦C'-w-York to Jeflferson, and. accompanied by his
brother, ooiitinuwl \n* journey to Pittsburg. At
Pittsbu; - tliey went aboard a river stiamer and
rod^ to thf Ff-cacj of th«r boyhood. When
asked his mission, the novelist rej.lied: "My
brotl:er and I are simply indulging in a fancy
for a trip on tbe Ohio which we have liad for
years.** The novelist has often said that he
wuiilJ like to £j>end his old age in Jeffexson. and
tias even taik<-d as though be might.
Jom Howells recalls an interesting incident
in the life of William Dean at the age of four
kaan, The How<lls family at that time lived
«X>out live miies from Xctiia, Ohio. The local
pajxrr at XexUa was bawo as "The TurclJ
L,ii;hL" One ciii/ Tlit Torch Uj;ht."* being in
NEW- YORK' PAnflS TRIBUNE, SUOTM.Y. FEBEUAISY 25, 1906.
W. D. HOWELLS PHOTOGRAPHED WHILE VISITING HIS BOYHOOD HOME
urgent need of additional typesetters, sent over
to the Howells family for assistance. William
Dean decided to accept the position offered him
and started out in the evening in order to Lie on
hand early next day. Joseph went along just
for company, but he was to return home after
William Dean had safely reached his destina
tion. It was a cold night in January. The snow
was falling. As the two boys trudged on Will
iam Dean became more and more solemn. He
was growing homesick, and the nearer he got to
Xenia the more homesick he grow. He hud
never been away from home to slay any length
of time, and the outlook didn't strike him fa
vorably. By the lime the two boys reached
BOYHOOD HOME OF W. D. HOWELLS, AT JEFFERSON, OHIO.
PRINTING OFFICE WHERE W. D. HOWELLS LEARNED TO SET TYPE*
Xenia William Dean had backed out entirely and
tlmy went homo again.
As a lad William Dean excelled among- his
playmates as a diver. One day his parents went
down to the river to witness atone of his feats.
The boy dived off a canalboat into the depths
and he was so lons beneath the water that his
father became alarmed and was just about to
divo down to find him when ha appeared again
at the surface.
Mr. Howelte, while visiting at his old home In
Jefferson, .i^ri.ioi to go hunting in memory of
oid times. With his brother Joseph and two
nephews they spent several hours in the woods
Lut they didn't so much as get uight of a wood-
chuck. They recalled a hunting Incident <A
earlier days when the boys were after a Bqnlirs]
and ona of the Howells brothers got caught in
the crotch of a tree and was nleaaed with, great
difficulty. In one of his books Mr. Bowella men
llons this incident and remarks that the question
changed from how to get the squirrel to how t«
get the boy.
Remarkable Stride in Search far
Origin of Life.
By Alftrxl Hoffman. M. A.
Of all the great scientific problems whi> h in
terest mankind at present, one or the most im
portant is life itself. Biology has shown that
life in all plants and animals, from the most
complicated, man himself, down to the simple,
single celJed organism, Ls intimately connestai
with a substance called i»rutoplasm. That is
the ultimate analysis so far as biology is con
cerned, and it remains for chemistry to Hhovr
how this living protoplasm is related to the In
animate substances about us.
Protoplasm is composed of substancrs known
to chemists as proteids, and it will therefor*
be seen that the study and, if possible, the ar
tificial propagation of protei.is ax.- subjects of
fascinating interest to all chemists. How is it.
PROFESSOR EMIL FISCHER.
Who is probing into the origin of life.
then, that up to the hist few years so little
was definitely known about ther.e substances?
The reason lies in thtir extreme complexity and
great changeability. Many chemists worked
with thorn with little or no success, and then
turned to more promising fields. It will there
fore lip understood that it was an event o* the
utmost importance when last month Professor
Emil Fischer, of Berlin University, announced
in a lecture before the German Chemical So
ciety in that city that he had succeeded in find
ing a method which would probably lead to a
complete synthesis of the pruUids. lie has al
ready made some of the simpler bodies belong
ing: to this class.
When he first attacked the problem six years
apo it was known that by treating the proteids
with acids one could, so to speak, break them
up into smaller piecei which would be easier
of examination. Fischer first perfected a
method of separating these "pi< ces" from each
other. Then he made artificially those fr.ifj
ments which wore not already known. In the
terminology of chemistry they are called "amm
o-acids," to signify that they have the proper
ties of both an "amirie" and an acid. Xow,
these amines have an affinity for acids, and
readily unite with them. So it is possible to
connect the amine end of one of the ammo-acids
to the acid end of another. But this new body
aguin has an amine group on one end and an
acid group on the other, and can therefore be
linked up with more ammo-acids. Thus it has
been possible for Fischer, by linking up differ
ent ammo-acids, like a train of cars, to m.iko
the simplest proteid-like bodies, which he calls
"poly-peptides." Th-se already resemble tha
natural proteids so closely that they are di
gested by the juices of the hnrnan intestines.
The longest "train" so far made has seven cars,
and when he reaches twenty Fischer expoct^ to
have in hand the "albuminores."
Proteid forms a necessary article of animal
food, and we are entirely dependent on planta
for its production. Some hone ha.s been ix
pressed in connection with Fischer's work that
we may be able to make our proteid food artiii
cially in future. If artificial proteid i.s t.> be
come cheap enough for human consumption an
entirely different method of making it most b<»
discovered. Fischer's method of liuilviiiisr it
up Ftep by step is slow and evpsr.?;vu, hut it
shows us the details in Its structure. Aa he
himself siiid, a quick method would probably
teach us nothing.
English, French Etchings
OF 18TII I'KKTtRf.
MKZZOTINTS. I'HOTOS AM) CfjQMOU
OF ALL. KL'KOPKAN GAIXERZUL
12 West 28th St. GIiORGH BUSSE.