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The Pensacola journal. (Pensacola, Fla.) 1898-1985, May 31, 1908, Section 2, Image 15

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn87062268/1908-05-31/ed-1/seq-15/

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uViV me important events scnca
frI nled for the opening weeks of the
year 100 none are fraught with
greater significance than the arrival at
Washington of two of the foremost ori
eatal statesmen These dignitaries from
j beyond the Pacific come not as BO many
1 of their countrymen have recently done
tor a fleeting glimpse of the republic and
I Its Institutions bat as the envoys or ac
credited representatives of Japan and
China at Uncle Sams headquarters They
will settle down under the Stars and
Stripesfor a residence of probably sev
eral years duration and doubtless ere
long they will be as well known by
name to readers of the newspapers aa
are any of oar own statesmen
As our readers are doubtless aware
each of the principal nations of the world I
maintains a sort of oranch office at Wash
ington each tiuch alien establishment be
> 6 ing lot charge of an envoy who sets for
s f hIs government or his sovereign In deal
lr 1 Jngs with the United States Now In
i t stew of the somewhat strained relations
j 1 that have for sometime past existed be
F ltween this country and Japan It can be
IK J Appreciated that much depends on the
V J personality and methods of the Mikados
proxy at the American capital Small
r2ponder then that when the officials at
TTcklo recently decided to make a change
of diplomats the liveliest interest In the
I
newcomer wan aroused
In the case of China International re
lations are not of course In so acute a
state but cause for wellnigh equal con
cern IB found In tho great desire of
American business interests to capture a
goodly share of the rich trade of the
Far East Thus we see that the arrival
of these newly appointed envoys from
the Orient possesses significance from a
trade as well as a political standpoint
and when it is added that both newcom
ers are old friends of the American
people who return to our shores after a
protracted absence It can be surmised
that this reunion in officialdom has HO
clal significance also Baron Kogoro
Takahlra newly selected to represent
Japan in the United States served for
years In a similar capacity sometime
since and Wu Tingfang lately selected
as Chinese minister at Washington is a
democratic Individual who daring a pre
vious period of service became known
throughout the length and breadth of the
land as the most picturesque and most
amusing Celestial statesman wbo ever
visited the republic
yThe newly accredited Japanese Ambos
> sad or has already enjoyed three periods
of residence In the United States Be first
visited our shores In 1881 as a secretary
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H all conditions that exist upon the
OF there Is none so fraught with
danger as the fog that impenetrable
mist that obscures all vision distorts all
objects and through which sounds of
whistles and bells carry but faintly and
unreliably
All who have ever traveled upon a
steamer through a fog know the feeling
qt depression that la experienced by the
passengers and yet upon the men who have
the shin in charge and upon whoso shoul
ders rests the responsibility of not only
the property of their owners but the lives
j of all of those on board the hours that
pass as the vessel slips along are tortuous
The United States government through
Lighthouse Service has ever been In
the forefront of nations seeking to throw
safeguards around the mariner No shore i
line In the world an boast of more or of
better lights than those strung out along
the edge of tho Atlantic from Maine to
Florida Where it has been found Im
possible to erect a lighthouse a lightship
i has been placed and the craft off Nan
r tucket and Diamond Shoals are unequaled
The mariner while he has ever been
wary about being caught In a hurricane
does not fear the wind or the waves Hs
knows that It Is a matter of strength of
1 his ship and the careful handling of her
and as long as he can keep clear of the
beach and can see where he Is going he
feels that be has a fighting chance
When the sea mist arises and casts its
i blanket over him he then feels that he is
helpless not only because he is afraid
that he may pile his vessel ashore but
that he may be cut down by some other
vessel
Among ttlierecent disasters in which I
flue ships Vrererl0 t were the grounding of
s
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at the Japanese Legation at Washing
ton Two years later be returned to his
native land and then went to Korea
spending more than four years in the
Hermit Kingdom where the Japs were
even then planning for the coup that
they later executed so effectively In
1892 Takahlra came back to serve as
Japanese consul general at New York
but his stay was not prolonged for In
less than a year he had been promoted
to the position of Japanese minister to
Holland and Denmark and later held
similar positions at several other Euro
pean capitals
Just at the dawn of the present cen
tury when the Boxer uprising In China
rendered the whole Eastern question a
live Issue the Mikado concluded that he
must be represented at Washington by
a man who was thoroughly familiar with
American sentiment and the Yankee way
of looking at things Takablra was obvi
ously the man for the place and so he
came back to Miss Columbias court ana
remained until after the close of the
RussoJapanese War The diplomat en
tered upon his duties In this country as
plain Mr Takahlra but he went homo
as Baron Takahlra the title having been
bestowed by the Emperor because of the
services rendered by Minister Takahlra
In negotiating the treaty of peace in the
memorable conference at Portsmouth
1C H
Baron Takahlra was succeeded at
Washington by Baron Aokl but this
elderly diplomat never seemed to get
wholly In sympathy with our American
officials and appnrenUy he was no more
successful in pleasing his countrymen at
i
the Suevlc and the Jebba both in the
English Channel These fine ships went
on the rocks during fogs and while the
former was only a partial loss the latter
was a total The masters of both craft
testified that they bad taken every pre
cautlpn but that they were misled by the
density of the fog
And yet while the sea bas annually
claimed its toll of ships and lives there
have ever Deen at work men who would
seek tp cheat old Davy Jones and now
with the perfection of tho wireless tele
graph and the wireless telephone there has
been perfected another Instrument that
gives promise of rivaling both in its use
fulness on shipboard
This new apparatus is known as the
submarine bell and that it has proven of
merit Is evidenced by the fact that the
United States government has not only
adopted it in the lighthouse service but
all of the great ships of our Navy now
en route to the Pacific are equipped with It
The first experiments were made with
apparatus fitted on a vessel In Boston
Bay and after a time the directors of
the Metropolitan Steamship Company op
erating between New York nnd Boston
were Induced to fit out one of their steam
ers with the equipment The company
that had been formed to exploit the
device bad also pbtained permission from
the government to equip one of the light
ships In Vineyard Sound with the sys
tem at their own expense and so effi
cient did the machinery prove to be In
all weather and under all circumstances
that the invention began to attract the
attention df shipmasters and authorities
in charge of vessel equipment
As a result of the demonstrations of
the efficiency of this system recognition
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home If good feeling was to be restored
between the two nations there was noth
ing to do seemingly but to rend back
the oldtime favorite of the American
public and so Takahlra comes for a
fourth period of residence In this coun
try He has been serving In the mean
time as Japanese ambassador to Italy
and Inasmuch as there Is reason to be
lieve that he was none too happy over
his duties at Rome it Is likely that he
is only too glad to come back to the
New World Moreover he returns with
added prestige for in addition to the
handle to his name he now ranks as
an ambassador which Is a big step
higher In statecraft than his old classifi
cation of minister
The new Japanese Ambassador is short
of statue anl stockily built with the
Inscrutable facial expression character
istic of his race Many persons see In
him a striking resemblance to Kudyard
Kipling Very much of a student he Is
decidedly progressive nod was long ago
dubbed A Yankee of the Cast Madam
Takahira to whom the diplomat was mar
ried in Toklo Just 20 years ago was
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of its merits was soon accorded by the
United States government as also by the
Canadian government and regular In
stallations of the apparatus upon light
ships and steamers began to be ordered
It was not long before the progressive
shipowners of Europe began to take no
tice of the new Invention Nautical au
thorities made an examination of it and
found It practicable with the result that
the system was soon adopted and now
practically every one of the great ocean
greyhounds that ply across the Pond I
at express speed are fitted with It thus
throwing around the traveling public
another safeguard
The United States Lighthouse Board
which has paid the greatest attention to
fog signals did not take up the sub
marine signal without an exhaustive test
and during the summer of 1DOG they
caused submarine bells to be runs on
1
one of the pioneer college girls of the
Land of the Rising Sun Not only was
she one of the earliest of her country
women to graduate from a European
school but she was one of the first Jap
anese women to become known in society
abroad as n Earopennized Japanese Madam
Takahira is a dainty little person who
if she wore her picturesque native dress
would form the quaintest picture imagina
ble but her toilettes are invariably In
strict accord with the most advanced
American and European fashions
Wu Tingfang who Is about to return
to the United States as Chinese Minister
has not been In this country since 190X
but he is well remembered by the Ameri
can public for no man In public life was
more talked about than this breezy
CelestiaL Incideuil he had the time of
his He at our republican court He gave
afternoon teas when he parried the re
partee of clever American girls he
da iced the twostep and played poker he
even turned lobbyist and lectured Con
gressmen a3 to h3W they should vote
Withal he enjoyed a freedom of action
and a blissful independence never vouch
fire different lightships continuously
night and day during a period of two
months and all navigators were Invited
to send to the board their opinions of
submarine signaling as an aid to naviga
tion
The result showed that by the use of
duplicate apparatus it was possible to
compress into two months as much serv
ice In point of time as the average
whistle Is called upon to do in three
years and that too without Injury to
the mechanism capable of being worked I
under 23 feet of water and operated
by the regular crew of the lightship with
out any Increase In the cost of coal
In the American Navy in which the
submarine torpedo boat Is expected to
play an important part In the near fu
ture the efficiency and advantages of
the submarine signals have been better
appreciated for it has been found that
tlA submarine craft can use a bell on
I I
safed before nor since to any other for
eign envoy
However the characteristic that gave
tho witty Wu his greatest fame was a
real or assumed inquisitiveness He had a
mania for asking questions and he seem
ed to eujoy the situation all the more
If his victims were embarrassed by his
Innocent queries The Minister speaks
English with the greatest fluency and this
fact combined with his unique philosophy
mil sparkling humor make him a social
lion nnd a muchsought afterdinner
speaker a role he will doubtless resume
with lu return to the land of the free
Since he was relieved as Minister at
Washington upwards of halt a decade
ago Wu Ting fane has resided in China
serving the government In various ca
pacities but It Is suspected from private
letters received In this country that he I
found his Inconspicuous career nt home
decidedly tame In comparison with the
homage he reoeic ns a popular Idol In I
America and It Is whispered that he hAs
been pulling wires nil the while to Win
reinstatement in his old position It was
thought at one time that the officials at
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which it can beat out a code which can
be recoiled on board the flagship of the
squadron and thus not only can the di
rection of the submersed craft always
be ascertained but a conversation can
be carried on orders given etc at a dis
tance of between five and six miles I
This apparatus which has been In
stalled on all naval craft of this country I
consists of two parts first the signaling j
apparatus to produce sounds in the water I
This may be at a fixed station as a buoy
or lightship or on a moving vessel Sec
ond the receiving Instrument usually
located on a ship The former Is of dif
ferent forms For stationary fog signals
the device Is a submerged bell of peculiar >
design adapted to produce sounds of long
range The bell Is rung by striking with
a clapper making distinct strokes sep
arated by intervals of silence so that it
can be operated like a fire alarm bell the
numbers serving to identify the location
Washington might object to the return of
W u beconse of the Impression wide
spread throughout the United States
that this unconventional Chinese states
man with his knowledge of American
character and American methods was
largely responsible for the boycott against
American goods which was started in
China a few years ago However Presi
dent Itoopelt decided that there was no
eIdence to connect Wu with the boycott
and no reason why he should not again
be welcomed
Awaiting WuIn Washington Is his for
mer righthand man Mr Yuus Kwal
When Wu first came to America Yung
Kwai was one of the Interpreters on the
legation staff but with broadening
nowledge and experience he has made
himself well nigh Indispensable to tho
legation and has been promoted to the
position of first secretary Incidentally
he has been pretty thoroughly American
ized has married an American wife and
sends his children to our public schools
Mrs Yung Kwal who was A roslflfoit
of Springfield Mass prior to her mar
riage to the Chinese diplomat wll bear
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as with the lumber of a lightship These
bells are from 15 to 18 inches in diameter
have a range of between five and six
miles and have been heard much farther
Automatic machinery can operate these
bells or they can be operated by w e
motion the same as the ordinary bell
buoy For using the apparatus on mov
ing craft the apparatus that sends the
sound is Inside the ship placed as close
to the keel as possible
The receiving apparatus as applied to
vessels comprises transmitters the cars
of the ship within the hull below the
waterline the receiving telephone and the
direction Indicator usually being in the
pilothouse The arrangement of them Is
In the forebold Is placed a pair of tanks
each as large as a goodsized cracker
box One Is on the port side and one on
the starboard side below the waterline
and fastened to the outer plating so that
the side of the ship makes one side of
the tank
This method of applying the sound re
ceivers requires nothing projecting on the
outside of the vessel the apparatus Is
wholly Inside of the hull there being no
cutting through nor any connection be
tween the outer water and the liquid In
the tank The submarine bell sound passes
from the outer water through the wall
of the ship into the liquid in the tank
where it affects the microphone in the
same way as the ordinary telephone trans
mitter is affected by the sound of the
voice The microphones in the port and
Starboard tanks respectively are con
nected by wires through a battery to
the direction Indicator which may be
nlaced In the ny r bonso hartronm or
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many of the responsibilities of hostess al
the Chinese legation during the rt > glm <
of Wu Ting fang for Madame Wu doe
not speak English with the fluency oi
her husband and the fact that she baa
the tiny feet characteristic of many of
the women of caste In China makes it
Impossible for her to go about much
Madam Wu unlike Madame Takahlra has
remained strictly loyal to her native cos
tunic though she has made a conclusion
to Western taste In a slight shortening
of the sleeves of the gowns so that her
haids may appear Like many of her
countrywomen she Is fond of diamonds
and possesses some magnificent gems
There are no children in the household
of the Japanese Ambassador but Minister
Wu has one son a lad of about IS who
relehccl milf < h of his ffln rifInn In AmnM
u
can public schools
Both of the new guests from the Orient
can move into hospitable homos Imme
diately upon their arrival for the Chinese
find Japanese governments are property
owners in Washington earn possessing a
commodious dwelling designed as a resi
dence for Irs envoy Wu Tingfang la
coining back to live In a 100000 mansion
that he designed and built but never oc
cupied When he was here before Wu
performed all the bard work connected
with providing a new legation home
but the building was not completed until
after he sailed for home and consequent
ly he never occupied it Small wonder
that he dreamed for years of coming
back to reside In the magnificent struc
ture for which he chose a site on the
side of a hill overlooking the Capital City
The mansion where Wu will dispense
hospitality In hs Inimitable fashion In a
three story and basement structure that
contains upward of half a hundred rooms
However there Is no pace to spare for
not only the Minister but most of the
members of his staff with their families
are quartered under the one roof and In
addition there Is a large retinue of ser
vants Including Chinese and American
cooks a valet for the Minister and a
Chinese tailor who makes in the latest
approved oriental fashion the flowing
robes of silk and satin worn by the
principal inemhers of the legation house
hold Tho embassy of Jnpnn Is somewhat
less Imposing in exterior appearance than
the Chine location but the interior Is
filled with rare porcelains embroideries
specimens of pottery and other art ob
jects of great value from the island em
pire
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on the bridge
This instrument IH a round metallic
case about nIne Inches In diameter
shaped like a ships clock and fastened
In the same way to the wall or the room
or bridge railing On Its face Is a
switch by means of which either the port
or starboard microphone can be connected
with the receiving telephones It hat
also a dial which shows to which side
the phones are connected and Inside Iii
a small electric lamp for use at night
The receiving phones are similar to the
common telephone par pieces and arc
hung on books one on either side of the
Indicator They are also connected to
gether either to the port or starboard
transmitter according to the position of
the switch They may be used singly or
together as in cases where the sound If
faint and it is desirous of shutting out
other noises
The operator places the receivers to bit
ears and then turns the switch until be
has picked up the sound and then the
Indicator shows the direction whence li
comes By carefully listening to th
sound and swinging the head of the ship
until the pound Is equal from both sides
it is thus possible to point the nose of the
vessel toward It meanwhile getting
bearings from the compass
The further development of the subma
rine signal will be watched with Interest
by shipowners and at no distant date It
is possible that the dangers of voyaging
oversea will be reduced greatly and the
average annual loss of 1000 good craft
will be greatly reduced by preventing col
lisions and groundings during that most
p1tul condition nf Hi > atloaf tntr
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