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A NOVEL CIRCUMSTANCE.
rio '* a Locomotive Telescoped a Balloon. ' Ote pitchy dark night early last summer, said the fat engineer, ■wiping his long-necked oil can with a piece of waste, “I was coming east with a fast freight. As we were ap proaching the top of Pecano hill l noticed some kind of a light moving up In the sky. First 1 thought it was anew star, but as the sky was all beclouded and 1 could see no other stars I concluded that I was mistaken. The light seemed to be descending, but as we pitched over the top of the hili 1 dismissed the matter from my mind, ha\:ug more important matters to at tend to. The farther along we got the dark ness and fog seemed to thicken. I vas a little bit skittish about going down the hill with that heavy train such a night, and as the train dropped, over the top of the decline i soaked the air on a little to ease ’em off. Then I thought it was no use slowing up; if I didn’t make time with the fast freight they’d take me off and put me on the pick-up train. So I put the air brake handle back in running , position again, and let the cars behind me set the pace. ’’After we got about a mile down the grade we were going a clip that would make the Empire State express look like a dingy old stage coach in com parison. Then I got ‘cold feet’ once more, and thought it was up to me to jack ’em up again. Accordingly I put the air over in the service posi tion, but b’thunder it had no more effect on those flying cars than a thimble of whisky on a Kentucky colonel. They just kept on coming and shoving my Mother Hubbard engine along ahead of ’em at about a 70-mile an hour pace. I reached up for the whistle rope to pass a tip to the train crew in the dog house that they’d better get out and twist up a few brake wheels, when casmash! we went into something. “Some darned kind of a rubbery blanket enveloped my chess-box cab and came down over the windows, just as If someone had lassoed us with a rubber bag. I made a frantic I jerk at the whistle valve, but instead of the sonorous sound it usually handed off, the noise it gave then was like the skriek of a penny horn. You couldn't hear it for a car length. I slammed the air over into the emergency notch, but I had kept it on so long for a service application that the pressure was all out of the train pipe, and it was like throwing straws under the car wheels. There was ‘nothing doing’ with the air. "I was getting mighty scared be cause I didn’t know what kind of a game we’d butted into. The rubber covering had settled down over the cab windows, and was shutting off the outside atmosphere from me so that I could hardly breathe and I surely thought I would suffocate unless I got relief somehow. No one on the train. riot Pvon mv Vnoiy TVildt dlrO straits I was in. I made several in effectual attempts to get out of the cab. but the rubber blanket had me completely cut off. "I tried the whistle again, but it was smothered so by its covering that it hardly gave forth any sound at all. I had about given up hope when I head the pop valve on the dome com mence to blow off steam. At first this added greatly to my discomfort, hut I realized that my only hope would be in having the safety valve blow off steam with sufficient pressure to lift the rubber covering. “After two or three minutes hart elapsed, during which time steam had been blowing off steadily with a heavy pressure, the rubber bag began to lift and finally tore itself away, although it took with it a large sec tion of the cab roof. It was pretty nearly exhausted, but I managed to reverse the engine and call for brakes With the assistance of the brakemen the train was brought speedily under control and stopped. We made an investigation, but it was so dark we could not find out what had hit the cab and clung so tightly to it. “In reading the newspaper adver tisements the next morning I saw an advertisement which stated that the proprietors of a big wagon circus would pay a liberal reward for in formation concerning their balloon, which had been lost, strayed or stolen from a little village In the vicinity o' which I had my queer experience the night before. Their swell parachute jumper had let the balloon get away from him. It flashed through my mind right away that it must have been the descending balloon I had run into, and on my next trip I saw the battered remains of a big balloon lying at the foot of the embankment where it had been loosened from the cab.” —New York Sun. THEIR LOT A PLEASANT ONE. Mexican Soldier* Are Better Off Than They Used to Be. “Things have greatly improved for the private soldier in the Mexicai army of late,” said a resident of Ne * Orleans, whose business takes him frequently into the sister republi “but only a few years ago he had a pretty rough time of it, and as for his pay—well, I’ll tell you a little story that covers that ground fairly wed. On one occasion I spent several months in a small town in the north ern part of the country, where a regi ment of infantry was temporarily in barracks. Of course, I got well ac quainted with all the officers, from the colonel down, and found them, with out exception, royal good fellows. But the poor soldiers were as toug.i looki’jig a lot of scarecrows as I ever laid eyes on. Their uniforms were *n rags and tatters, half of them wcit barefooted and the other half had no hats, while their arms and accoutre ments were in a condition to matc.i. The paymaster used to get around about every two months and his ar rival would he a signal of great ex citement at the barracks. lie did his business, however, entirely wit-i the colonel, and after inspecting the rolls would place a certain sum -if money in hat dignitary's hands, -line j formally with the whole staff and taka ! his departurr. "Next diy the colonel would caU :n the captaii.s of the several companies and give each of them a bag of dollars The captains would thereupon mm ! mon the lieutenants, w r ho, in turn would send for the sergeants, and thus the money would glide down the lino until it finally reached the corpaiais. who did the actual paying off of thi men. How it happened I don’t under take to say. but with each transfv the cash invariably suffered a slir ak age. Perhaps it was due to abrasion. Anyhow not more than u third ever reached the rank and file. They would have been bad enough, but in th 8 regiment there was also a curious ebb tide, so to speak, that swept a gool deal of the money back through the original channel of distribution. The whole crowd, from privates to com mander, were inveterate poker players and by a mysterious freak of fate their ability was in almost exact -atio to their rank—the old colonel b.nug acknowledged champion of the de partment. After pay day there was always a grand poker orgie, In which the non-commisssioned officers usually cleaned out the privates. Then afe *• lieutenants would swoop down an wind up the ‘noncoms,’ to get lcote! themselves by the captains, who in variably fell victims to the superie skill of the colonel. The result wa> that the unfortunate private never got over a third of his pay and never had that longer than 48 hours. He got It in the neck both ‘cornin’ and gwine,' as the old darky remarked.”—New Orleans Times-Democrat. KIFOURI’S WHIRLING ART. Trained by a Priest Until He Could Dance Two Hours. When Ameer Abouhamad supports ten men on his shoulders, and the rest of his Arab troupe are turning sur prising somersaults, at the Wild West show, Alexander Kifouri, “the whirl ing dervish, goes round and round on a board platform three feet square. Kirfouri begins to dance the moment the Arabs dismount from their horses. The audience gives a short laugh of amusement at the absurd figure he makes; then waits expectantly. But he does not change, and the eyes of the spectators turn to Abouhamad and his troupe. Kifouri goes round and round. When the tumbling and acrobatic contortions have taken up their allot ted fifteen minutes, Kifouri whirls faster and faster, then stops suddenly, motionless, with outstretched arms. He does not fall from exhaustion, but turns “cartwheels” over the tanbark, out through the canvas up to the stables, where he discards his flowing white skirt for scarlet breeches and mounts a horse, to ride in the “race of nations.” When Kifouri goes out to walk, he is dressed in English clothes, and wears a flaming red cravat and a der by hat rakishly tilted on one side of his head. Sametimes he will talk about his employment.” I learned to whirl when I was a leetle boy—so high—eight years old. (Kifouri is only nineteen now). The priest of the church take me. I had three brothers, two sisters. I was the strongest. First I turn just a leetle; then more—and so sick my head go faster than me. Every day in the mosque, three times, while the priests say their prayers. No, not sick long. Legs got strong quick as do the head. Not dizzy now. Can turn two hours now just as well as lift en minutes. We go faster home; music wild, ‘turn turn’ beat on drums, people shriek, dance till you fall down, tired. So This, easy!” Novel Sort of a Will. A wealthy land owner near Smolensk, Russia, died not long ago, and after the funeral his heirs looked vainly for the will, but without success. A few days later a young man, see ing a graphophone on the table In the library, put Into It a record which he supposed was that of u popular Russian song. To his amazement and terror, instead of a song he heard the dead man’s voice recite the words of the missing will. The heirs were notified of the dis covery, lawyers were summoned, and they lost no time in examining the record containing the will. It was found to be flawless, and the question then arose whether a will left on a graphophone cylinder would be deemed valid by the courts. This question is now before the supreme court of St. Petersburg. The Wrong Man Aroused. “Why is this called an owl car?” asked one of the belated passengers. "Hoot, mon!” sleepily responded the passenger known as Sandy McGreg or, “How do I know.” —Chicago Trib une. “You wear a remarkably small hat, sir,” the salesman said. "Pta a 6% and that's the smallest size they make for men.” "I know it,” replied the -customer, “but you'll find I average all right when you come to selling me a pair of shoes. I wear No. 10s.” LIGHTNING CALCULATORS. Remarkable Feat* That Have Puzzled Expert Mathematicians. Some skeptical persons who wit ,ncssed Inaudi's extraordinary per formances in mental arithmetic at the ; London Hippodrome a short time ago, expressed an uneasy feeling that they might probably have been duped after all; that the wonderful sums in addi tion. subtraction, division and extrac tion of root which were proposed to j him from the audience, and which he 1 seemed to perform with such ease and expedition, to -say nothing of his re plating without error the long rows of figures written on a blackboard be j bind his hark, might have been all carefully arranged ami learned be ! forehand. Their skepticism, however, | was entirely groundless. Inaudi first I gave ■ vidence of his curious aptitude ■ for mentally manipulating figure* when he was six years old. At the age of seven he could multiply with five figures correctly. And for some years after this he relieved the tedium of his lonely life as a Piedmon tese shepherd boy by sedulously cul tivating this extraordinary faculty. And he is by no means the only in stance on record of a boy of little or no education being able to do sums which might puzzle a senior wrang ler, and whose inexplicable powers have certainly afforded a further puz zle to the professional psychologist. A farm laborer from Derbyshire, named Jedediah Buxton, who was ex amip- U before the Royal society in 1754, was possessed of a very similar power. Although his grandfather was vicar and his father schoolmaster of the parish in which he was born, yet Jedediah, either from natural in capacity or from preoccupation with his arithmetical pursuits, never even acquired the rudiments of learning; either could or would not so much as learn to write, ana was content to work as a farm laborer to the end of his days. But at a very early age he appears to have had an intuitive per ception of the relative proportions of numbers, and to this subject he de voted the whole of his attention. His method was so much his own that he seems to have been quite unac quainted with the common rules. On one occasion, having been re quired to multiply 456 by 378, and hav ing done it as quickly as one of his examiners could do it in the ordinary way, he was asked to work the sum audibly, in order that his method might be discovered. It then appear ed, curiously enough, that he went to work in a very roundabout way. First he multiplied the 456 by 5, which pro duced 2,280; this he again multiplied by 20, and found the product to be 45,600. Of course he might much more readily have achieved this result by simply adding two noughts to the mul tiplicand. This he evidently did not know. However, he next went on to multiply the number he had now ar rived at by 3, which gave him the sum of the multiplicand multiplied by 300; and it then remained for him to multiply it the This he effected by the awkward pro cess of multiplying by 15 the 2,280 which was the product obtained by his fir6t multiplication of 456 by 5. The product thus obtained he then addtl to the 136,800, which was the sum (/ 456 multiplied by 300. This produced 171,000 as the sum of 456 multiplied by 375. It remained for him, therefore, to multiply the origi nal number again by 3 and add the sum of it to 171,000, and by this cer tainly rather cumbrous process he found the product of 456 multiplied by 378 to be 172,368. Jedediah had no more general knowledge than any averuge peasant boy of ten years of age. and showed no memory for anything but figures. He was sometimes asked when he re turned from church if he could repeat the text or any part of the sermon, but he could never remember a single sentence. In one matter only except ing his figures, did he ever show the slightest interest, but his desire to see the king and the royal family was strong enough to induce him, when forty-seven years of age, to walk to London for that purpose. He was entertained by the editor of The Gentleman's Magazine at St. John's Gate and exhibited to the Royal so ciety. the "members of which he after wards referred to as “the volk of Siety court.” During his stay in Lon don he was taken to Drury Lane theater to see “Richard III.,” but tf l ' v . OX THE MINISTER. Rev. Or. Thirdly—“No, sir; a minister should never use an other minister’s sermon.” Deacon Kidder—“l think he’s justified under some cireum -Btanoe.” Rev. I>r. Thirdly—“ Under what circumstances, sir-” Deacon Kidder —“Well, for instance, if it was a very short sermon.” neither the novelty nor the splendor of the show, nor the exhibition of passion, made any visible impression on him, and he occupied himself in counting the number of words which Garrick uttered during the perform ance. The Gentleman's Magazine for June, 1754, informed the public that Jedediah had returned to the place of his birth without regretting anything which be had left behind in London, cheerfully returning to his customary work, and quite convinced that a slice of rusty bacon afforded a more delici ous repast than ffiything to be ob tained in the great city. Another untaught arithmetical genius, Zerah Colburn, whose abnor mal development raises au interesting problem, was the son of an American peasant. He was brought to London jy his father in 1812, when eight years old, when he was examined and his peculiar powers were tested by Francis Baily and other skillful math ematicians. It was found that al though he was sc ignorant of the ordi nary rules of arithmetic that he could not perform o : paper a simple sum in multiplication or division, yet that he could mentally multiply any number less than ton into itself successively nine times, and give the results faster than the person appointed to record them could take them down. He multiplied eight into itself fifteen times, or, to use technical termE, raised it to the sixteenth power, and the result, consisting of fifteen digits, was found to be right in every figure. This was astonishing enough, but he wa able to do things even more won derful. When asked what number, multiplied by itself, gave 106,929, he answered before the original number could be written down, that it was number, multiplied twice into i‘self, 327. And again, when asked what ly, what was the cuberoot of that ar ray of figures he replied with equal facility and promptness that it was 645. The mathematical experts who were examining the boy found that It was impossible to find the cube root of these nine figures in the shortest and most convenient way, in less than three or four minutes. But what most surprised the mathematicians was that he could almost as readily an swer questions for which they had not been able to provide any systematic procedure themselves. For instance, he was asked to name two numbers which multiplied together, would give the number 247.483 ;ancl he Immedi ately named 941 and 263, which are said to be the only two numbers which will do so. And when asked to name a number which would divide 36,083 exactly, he unhesitatingly re plied that no number would do so. if any of our mathomatiftally minded readers will add-ess themselves to this problem, they will find that It will give them at .’east a quarter of an hour’s stiff calculation before they can assure themselves that 36,083 is what is called a prime number, or a number only divisible by Itself and unity, a solution which this child was, Hi oyiuc UiJOICIiUUO V tKJ , uuic Ui UCC immediately the question was pro pounded to him. Colburn, like Buxton, seems t# have had a method of his own, but he con stantly declared that he did not know how the answers came into his mind .“God put these things Into my head,” he said on be' ig pressed for an explanation, “and I cannot put them into yours.” Jedediah lived to the age of sixty-five with no more gen eral knowledge or stock of ideas than a child of ten, and he kept his extra ordinary calculating faculty to the end; but Zerah, as the general cul ture of his mind improved, found his special power to fade away. Francis Bally was of opinion that Zerah Colburn’s feats indicated the existence of certain properties of num bers which mathematicians hart not yet discovered. But it it perhaps equally possible that they indicate capacities of the human mind which have hitherto been undreamed of.— London Globe. “Your letters to me,” said his affianced bride one day, ’’are so cold and formal.” “Surely, my dear,” exclaimed the literary celebrity, stung by her re proach, “when they are published, after my death, they will be found to be models of composition, breathing the most exalted sentiments and couched in absolutely correct Eng lish.” PURE AIR. ’ It* Great Value a* a Cure for Con sumption. It is important that the entire time of the patient should be passed in pure air. The vigilance of this in cessant campaign against the enemy should not be relaxed a moment. Therefore good air has to be pro vided for the time spent within doors. Otherwise the foe will take advantage of the armistice. With the new forces thus recruited by him, the advantages gained will be largely counteracted. Hence, the rooms have not only to be kept scrupulously clean and disin fected, but thoroughly ventilated. The patient has to sleep with window open as wide ns possible. In certain German sanatoria abundant pure air at night is so insisted upon that there are no windows in the openings. An abundance of bed clothing is provided, and the patient soon learns to sleep in comfort in the most inclement weather, even though the snow blow* in. The excess of oxygen fairly burns the noxious microbes out of the system. In an eastern Massachusetts re gion. not far from the coast and but slightly above the sea level, subject to all the vicissitudes of climito for which New England is famous, and so plagued with consumption that one-fourth of all the deaths in the community are caused by it, some re markable results have been obtained by Dr. Charles S. Millet, of Brock ton, in the home treatment of con sumption. A young man many of whose nearest relatives on both sides had died of the disease, was the first case. He was already in a bad way when change of climate was advised, and the prospect of leaving home so depressed him that he became much worse. His physician had been in terested in the accounts of the Ger man methods of keeping patients out in recltning-chairs until ten o’clock in the evening, but he considered a bed the best place at night. So the doctor consented to the patient's de sire to keep at work —for he was em ployed in a factory and could not leave without a serious sacrifice —on condition that he sleep outdoors. The young man had a platform built in a sheltered angle outside his cham ber window, where there was a south westerly exposure. Here he slept under the sky for five months. He began to gain flesh from the start. In four months his weight had In creased by twenty-two pounds. Re covery was complete. The only medicine he took was a tonic of nux vomica. The same physician met with equal success with like treat ment in various other eases. The ideal arrangement of a sanatorium would, therefore seem to be one where the sleeping rooms, with a southernly exposure are planned with window-openings so large that the whole space Is commonly free to the air on one side, while without there are balconies where the beds can be rolled out for sleeping under the stars at all times when the weather per mits.—Sylvester Baxter, In American Monthly Review of Review's. A CLEVER RUSE. The Sequel to a Hot Fight Over a Scalper’* Ticket. “Talking about scalpers’ tickets,” said an old conductor, "the queerest thing I know in that line happened when I was working for the Missouri Pacific, back in the ’Bo’s. My run was between Kansas City and St. Louis, and one morning as I was pulling out on my eastbound trip a fellow gave me an old three-day excursion ticket that had expired at least six months before. I told him it was no good and after considerable growling he handed me some small silver. ‘That will carry me to ,’ he said, naming a little station, ’and between times I’ll think it over.’ ‘Very well,’ I replied, ‘but 1 give you notice right now that I won’t carry you a foot further unless you put up the money.’ “He made no answer and began carefully studying his ticket. When we got to the station I was by his side. ‘Well sir,’ I said, ‘what do you intend to do?’ ‘I intend to ride on this ticket,’ he snarled. T’ve read it over and it’s perfectly good.’ ‘l’m not going to argue any more about that,’ said I. ’Not un less you’re the best man,’ said he, looking ugly. Well, I threw him off, but it was a tough job. He fought like a wildcat and came near licking both me and the brakeman The sta tion w’here this happened was In tho heart of a wild moonshine district, and the crowd that collected all sympathized with the passenger. As we pulled out they stoned the train. I expected to hear from the fellow al most at once, but 1 didn’t, and the affair soon passed out of my mind. “Six months later I happened to be In the general offices when, to ray surprise, I saw him coming out of the manager’s private room. ’Who Is that man?’ I asked a clerk. He laughed. ‘Why, don’t yfou know him?’ he said. ‘He’s ,’ and he named a detective who had lately worked up the evidence In a big train robbery case In the very neighborhood of the station where our row had occurred. “Then I understood. You see, he wanted some good excuse for going Into the settlement, and there was no better role than that of a poor man just ejected from a train by a brutal conductor. He had his scalper's ticket to show; he had Just put up a genuine fight, and he claimed to be dead broke. All that appealed to the natives and they took him In at once. The result was that he stayed there a month and picked ub all the evidence he wanted. It was a shrewd scheme, but I still think he made that scrap unnecessarily realistic.”—New Orleans Times-Democrat ABOUT TO ERUPT. Italian Scientist Say* Vesuvius Will Soon Resume Active Operations. Professor Matteucci, the distin guised Italian scientist and careful student of Mount Vesuvius’ vagaries, predicts that anew eruption will take place in a short time, and from various indications he feels satisfied it will be no slight one. He has considered it well to utter a timely warning, as experience has shown that Vesuvius, when it vents its wrath unexpectedly, does a great deal of damage to persoais ami property in the vicinity. Professor Matteucci is no alarmist, but bases his prediction on the fact, which he has noticed, that various new fissures are no w being formed near the summit of the mountain, and thiq in his opinion is an unquestionable proof that masses of lava and other matter soon will be again belched forth His close study of the volcano dur ing the recent eruption confirms him in this opinion. Day after day he continued his in vestigations, often at the peril of his life, and as a result the account of his work, which he has Just forwarded ts the French Academy of Sciences, con tains more facts about Vesuvius than were ever known before. He noted the daily changes that took place In the crater during the eruption, and he even measured the height which was attained by the great masses of Igneous matter after the mountain had vomited them forth. The largest of these masses ascended to a height of 537 metres and when it fell It occupied a space of twelve cubic metres, and was found to weigh 30,- 000 kilogrammes. ft traveled through the air at the rate of eighty metre:', a second, and it is estimated that a force equivalent to 600,000 horse power must have been re quired to send It ooi its skyward ca reer. This enormous mass fell danger ously near the professor. This was not the only occasion, however, on wfiich he almost lost his life, and his friends are still wondering how he managed to escape the constant show er of fiery rocks that threatened him during the entire eruption. At one time It was rumored that he had been killed, but happily this proved to be false, and now many are congratulating him, not only on his good fortune In passing through so many perils unscathed, but also on the skill and forethought which have en abled him to ascertain the time when the next eruption may be expected.— London Express. Redress for Trust Wrongs. When a trust shows signs of goug ing the people, redress is to be had in two ways without resorting to doubtful political remedies. One is the build ing of independent plants, which will nearly always follow the imposition of an unfair price. The other is the substitution of some article for the product of the trust factories. In Omaha it is alleged that the asphalt trust in charging too mu :h for paving and keeping the streets in repair. The remedy is to be found in the adoption of other material for paving in the future. Of course asphalt is by far the best pavement yet discovered, but brick is not many laps behind, and the people will be glad to use it rather that submit to imposition on the part of tho asphalt company. And if the brick men form a combination to boost up the price, it is not beyond the possibilities that some inventor will hit upon a com position that will knock out all com petition. The only way for a trust to retain its grip upon its business is to be decent with the people and not provoke them to retaliation.—Lincoln Journal. Bismarck’s Creed of Love. From The Love Letters of Bismarck, this extract from a letter to his wife Is taken; ”i married you in order to love you in God and according to the need of iny heart, and in order to have in the midst of the strange woild a place for tny heart, which all the world’s bleak winds cannot chill and where 1 may find warmth of the home fire to which I eagerly betake myself when it is stormy and cold without, but not to have a society woman for others; and I shall cherish mud nurße your little fireplace, put wood on it, and blow and protect It against all that is evil and strange, for, next to God’s mercy, there is nothing which is dearer and more necessary to me than your love and the homelike hearth that stands between us everywhere, even In a strange land when we are togetb The Deer’s Trusting Eye. Buffalo Bill once allowed himself to be put to shame by falling to shoot i couple of deer at an easy distance. Evci y one has his little weakness ” he explained; mine Is a deer’s eye. I don t want you to say anything about t to your friends, for they would augh more than ever, ut the fact Is 1 have never yet been ab< to shoot a rlwoked in the eye. With a buffalo or a bear or an Indian It is different. But the deer has the eye of a trusting child—soft, gentle and con fiding. No one but a brute could shoot a deer If he caught that look.— Mrs. Wetmore’s Ufa CoL Cody. The Child at Play. Play is the means whereby Individ-, *"" are f.^. nt c ** hlp tor the wor of life. A little child at play is “at his lessons.' W hat does the man next door do?” asked the assessor. “There's nobody at home." ‘My husband says he's a bureau drawr. He sits in one of the city bureaus and draws a salary,” _