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The herald. [microfilm reel] (Los Angeles [Calif.]) 1893-1900, January 19, 1898, Image 10

Image and text provided by University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042461/1898-01-19/ed-1/seq-10/

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An old colonial grist mill that ground
corn for Washington's army in the
days of the Revolution has just begun
grinding again for the farmers near the
upper portion of Wissahickon Creek,
four miles northeast of Chestnut Hill,
in Pennsylvania. It is more than a
hundred and twenty-live years old;
yet the old Piper mill is as strong and
steadfast apparently, as when the
Colonies were fighting for their lib
Nowadays the place where it Is lo
cated is known as the Thomas estate,
and the big three story gray stone
structure looms up just as do the mem
ories of Lexington and Sunker Hill.
Every one of its ereat cross-joists and
beams were hewn by hand from solid
quartered oak logs. Tha' 1- the kind
of timber that lasts. In olden times
this was the only mill anywhere near
the section of country where it stands,
and therefore about all the grain that
was raised for miles and miles around
it was brought there to be ground. In
fact until the day of steam power In
grist mills, its wheels whirled merrily
every day, and the miller and his men
had that satisfied appearance of those
who have plenty to do.
It is now a little more than fifty
years since the mill ceased operations.
The old wooden shafting and quaintly
wrought oak cogs nnd angle wheels
stood motionless and covered with
dust, left just as they were in the days
when prosperity smiled on the miller.
The spider wove his web and the birds
sought shelter from storms in the old
mill, year after year and decade r.fter
A few weeks ago it was decided that
so substantial a structure, thoroughly
adapted to even modern milling, should
no longer remain in disuse. It would
not do to attempt to operate with the
old fashioned gear and plant, so it was
decided to bring it up to date by the
removal of the ancient running gear,
and by substituting modern steel
shafting and steel cogs.
Down came the old square and octa
gonal main shaft, together with the
quaint old paddle mill-wheel,—just the
same wheel that poets have ritten
of, just the same as the one of which
our grandfathers have told us. Up in
their places went a modern iron tur
bine and a six-inch steel main shaft.
The mill looked the same on the out
side, to be sure, but the spiders had
gone from the old interior and the
birds nested there no longer.
This was not all. In the old days,
the mill race, as it was first built, was
quite big enough. Not so now. It was
found necessary both to widen and
deepen it. The old temi-circular dam
was discovered to have outlived its
usefulness, and this, too. was recon
structed. The true American spirit,
while it may rebuild, has no love of de
stroying the old-time landmarks, and
the few changes which have been made
have, except so far as was unavoida
ble, not been allowed to alter the gen
eral appearance of the old mill.
The changes were completed a few
days ago. The great doors that have
been closed to the public for a half a
century were again opened; and now,
after a silence of fifty years, the old
mill again vibrates to the power that
grinds the grain.
Copyright, 1597, by Bacheller Syndicate. !
Crucible to Beat the Klondike.
There are just two fur aces in ex
istence avowedly built for the purpose
of manufacturing gold. They are lo
cated at 39th street and Lowe avenue.
Chicago, and the man who has built
them, E. C. Brice. claims that they will,
before long, with the other apparatus
used in connection therewith, bring in
$10,000 a week.
Think of the flood of .told that these
new fashioned crucibles will bring into
existence, if Mr. Brice is correct. They
MANUFACTURED—From a Photograph.
are only just fairly in operation, for it
was not until November 2- that fires
were lighted in them for the first time.
Mr. Brice declares that the only rea
son gold has not been manufactured
before is because no one hitherto has
ever been able to learn just exactly
what prold consists of.
He says that it was borne in upon
him that the reason investigators had
failed to learn the secret of the trans
mutation of metals, was that they had
never stopped to consider that the re
duction of gold itself or silver was not
at all likely to result in showing the
exact proportion of the elements that
went to constitute each. Mr. Brice,
therefore, experimented in ways that
he keeps to himself, and one day, al
most by accident, he succeeded in
making both gold and silver at the
same time. So he claims.
The particular ore used by Mr. Brice
in the creation of the most precious of
metals is known as the ore of anti
mony, and it costs about Sls a ton. The
10,000 tons of ore a day which it is pro
posed to prepare from the ore of anti
mony by means of peculiar processes
which are Mr. Brice's own. when re
fined by the usual processes of refining
base bullion, will yield $2,800 to the ton.
One of the features Mr. Brice's
method consists in the use of artificial
volcanos, the principle of which Mr.
Brice learned by living ;ix months on
the slopes of Vesuvius while that
mountain was in eruption. The ore of
antimony contained in crucibles is al
lowed to remain in these volcanos
forty-eight hours. It is then crushed,
the powdered ore placed on the remov
Most Potent X-Ray Yet Produced.
There has recently been placed in the
Lawrence Scientific School of Harvard
College the greatest X-ray mat in
I the world. It possesses the astonish
;ing t:ectric motive 'Tee of 1,200,000
! volts. This voltage, if utilized upon an
| electric railway, would be sufficient to
' keep 2,400 cars constantly in motion for
a single day.
This great machine—for great it is In
size as well as foree —is operated under
the supervision of Professor Trow
bridge, director of Jefferson physical
laboratory of Harvard, and one of the
best known of modern electricians.
Professor Trowbridge describes his
machine —shown in the accompanying
ill :tration with the Professor himself
standing beside it —as a modification
of Plante's so-called rheostati" ma
chine, but it is far more practical and
more powerful.
Sixty plates of glass which form con
densers are the really essential part of
the machine. These plates are charged
in multiple by ten thousand storage
cells, and are discharged in series, giv
ing intense disruptive discharges over
four feet in length. Just imagine a
stream of electric sparks four feet long,
snapping, crackling, buzzing, in that
same weird, uncanny fashion in which
the lightning sometimes plays for an in
stant along its zig-zag track from cloud
to cloud. The length of the electric
spark is exactly proportional to the
voltage lengths over one inch.
To those who have ever seen an X
ray machine in operation, the size of
Professor Trowbridge's giant can best
be explained by advising them to com
able bottom of a metallurgical furnace,
and a quantity of scrap lead thrown on
top of it.
The fearful heat melts the lead and it
eventually vaporizes, the vapor pass
ing up through the ore, forming a cor- ,
rosive substance which transforms into
what is called a "watte" everything
In the powdered ore except the gold
and silver. The gold and silver sink
into the molten lead and are drawn off
with it. The combination is placed in j
! molds about eight Inches long and four
inches wide of pyramidal form.
The rellning process continues until
the gold and silver are all extracted.
Mr. Brice claims that his first week's
work resulted in the production of
more than $18,000 worth of gold and sll
-1 ver. The wealth, therefore, that must
pass through these furnaces, according
jto his statements, is likely to be as
! great as that hoped for by the man
i who Is trying to extract all the gold
there is in sea-water by means of an
apparatus now in course of erection up
at Passamaquoddy Bay on the coast of
Copyright, 1597, by Bacheller Syndicate.
Jack McAuliffe's Superstition.
Jack McAullfCe was superstitious to
a marked degree when on the race
track, and firmly believed in the won
derful winning powers of an old blue
serge coat, which was quite out of
keeping with the rest of his tasteful
outiit. Whenever he had lost heavily
and felt something must be done, the
old coat would be taken from the ward
robe, brushed, and donned. This coat
enveloped the pugilist's bunches of
QIUSCIeS the day Reolare won the Sap
phire Stakes at Bheepshead Bay, Mc-
Auliffe laying ¥10.000 to win $8,000 on
j tho race.
Feared the Anarchists.
Just after the execution, Diebier,
,the French executioner who guillotined
Kavaohol, was turned out of his house
by his landlord, who was very much
: afraid the Anarchists would blow up
I the property.
pare the electric disruptive charge with
that of the ordinary machine. Per
haps the largest X-ray machine in the
country next to that owned by Prof.
Trowbridge is the property of Prof. W.
J. Morton, of New York. The distance
between the positive and negative
poles in this machine is not more than a
foot; it is over this distance that the
disruptive electrical discharges pass
from pole to pole. Imagine, therefore,
a machine where the positive and neg
ative poles are four feet apart, and
some idea of the immense superlority
of Prof. Trowbridge's machine can be
The X-ray that this giant machine
can make possible is more powerful
than any of which Prof. Roentgen ever
talked—or dreamed, probably. It Is
believed that through it and the de
velopments resulting from its use a
new era will dawn so far as the avail
ability of the X-ray is concerned. Here
is a light powerful enough to test the
theories of the experts who have
claimed that the possibilities of the
X-ray are only limited by the degree
of development.
Electricians who are studying the
X-ray problem in different cities of the
United States are discussing the ad
visability of inviting Prof. Trowbridge
to carry out various proposed tests of
the powers of the ray. with a view of
settling forever the disputed question
as to the effect of a tremendous in
crease of the penetrating power. Mr.
Edison is authority for the statement
that the construction of this machine
can best be likened to the dawning of
a new day in the world of electricity.
Copyright, 1597, by Bacheller Syndicate.
I Next spring there is to l a great
j change in the foundations of the pre-
I dictions of "Old Probabilities." Willis
L. Moore, Chief of the United States
Weather Bureau, says that by that i
| time the Signal Corps will have placed :
not less than twenty kite-stations be
' tween the Rocky Mountains and the i
' Atlantic Ocean. At eac't of these, 1
daily readings of the weather pre- j1
dictions will take place at an elevation : i
of a mile or more by means of kites. i
At present there is only one kite-sta- i
tion, that at Washington City. From !
readings taken there at the elevation 1
;of more than a mile, information has \
'■ been gained by the Signal Service '
! which has greatly assisted in estimat- :
i ing the future direction of a storm
J center when all other means of gain-
This Melon Is the Record-Breaker of the World.
Once a yeir at Rocky Ford, Col.,
they have wnat they call watermelon
day. The accompanying illustration
shows the dual lions of the last occa
sion The melon, which measures a
trifle over five feet in length, is the
world's record breaker. Not even in
Maumee where potatoes grow so tall,
was anything like 'Ms ever accom
plished by natur;.
Lion number two
is State Senator
•Swink, the father
of Melon and
one of that fast
disappearing list
of "honor men,"
the Colorado pion
eers. Sen: tor
Swink and tho
watermelon both
challenge admira
tion for their ex
traordinary qual
After the water
melon shown in
the picture had
been photographed,
it was carved, and
the biggest colored
man wlt h the
greatest appetite
ever nown south
of Mason and Dix
on's line could not
have eaten a fiuar
ter of it. It is said
that fruit mon
sters of this sort
commonly lose
their delicacy, both
of flavor and tex
ture. 3ut this wa
termelon Is an ex
ception to all rules:
there was any
amount of delicacy
apparent to the
fortunate ones who
were given a por
tion of it. The
melon weighed ex
actly 356 pounds,
and was three feet
and a half in cir
cumference. When
carved it made ISO
slices, and one slice
was all that an or
dinary person
could possibly eat
at a meal. Rocky
Ford's watermelon
A HOLE 10,000
The remarkable task is now in pro
cess of accomplishment of digging a
hole 10,000 feet deep at West Elizabeth,
Pa., in which it Is proposed to place a
mammoth boiler and to make steam In
it through the heat generated at that
depth by the earth.
At present the depth of 6,350 feet has
been reached, and no obstruction has
been met which promises permanently
to retard progresj of the experiment.
There is no hole in the wcrld like this,
which will be. when the full depth is
attained, nearly two miles from that
part of the earth on which the grass
grows. The shaft of the Red Jacket
mine out in Michigan is said to be
three miles in length, but that meas
urement by no means refers to a per
pendicular shaft, but to one which af
ter sinking far U"der around, branches
off in horizontal fashion.
The work at West Elizabeth is the
joint idea of Prof. William Hallock,
Adjunct Professor of Physics at the
Columbia University, N. V., and *he
Forest Oil Company, located at the
scene of the digging. The primal sovrce
of the inspiration of the idea was the
fact that the company is lor"..ing for
new oil deposits, and In the search
bored down to the three thousand foot
level. When that point had been
reached, Prof. Hallock heard of It, and
sucggested the present scheme In the
interests of science.
Incidentally, science Is to be made
to serve a business purpose, for the
power thus obtained will be utilized
for various things at a profit. The
steam will cost practically nothing, and
really the power is unlimited because
th supply is exhaustless. There is no
reason why the power cannot be util
ized for the generation of electricity,
and West Elizabeth made an electrical
supply center.
The drill used In this tremendous
task of boring is formed of three-quar
ter-inoh pipes jointed. It Is estimated
that ten feet a day is about the max
imum progress. As the drill pounds
against the rook and disintegrates it.
the water which is force 1 downward
through the hole made by the drill
trickles into the powder thus formed
and transforms it into paste. This is
sucked up through the hollow drill to
the surface, where it constantly spouts
If it is found possible to penetrate to
the level intended, the hole made by
the drill will be gradually enlarged un
til It is possible to lower a boiler down
through this longest of all shafts. The
problem on the lay mind is. how does
the company propose to secure the
operation of that boiler by human
means? When the officials are ques
tioned they claim to have found t'.e so
lution of the mystery, and say that
when the time comes they will demon
strate that their plan is entirely feas
In the meantime the boring goes
steadily on. The experiment is being
watched with the keenest Interest by
both scientific and commercial ex-1
Copyright, 1897, by Bacheller Syndicate.
ing information of this sort have
Nov, after long experiment, the sig
nal officers have so improved on kite
flying that apparatus necessary to
record the facts the signal service offi
cers require is now easily sent up to
the height of one mile during a mod
erate wind. An automatic instrument
has been made that, while weighing
less than two pounds, will record tem
perature, pressure, humidity, and wind
velocity. In discussing his hopes and
plans for the future, Mr. Moore has
this to say in response to a query ad
dressed to him:—
day is the only festival of the sort ob
served anywhere. It is attended every
year by from 10,000 to 12,000 persons,
and sometimes the governor of the
state is among the visitors. Thousands'
of the melons are brought in from the
ranches and deposited in a big grove
within the city limits. At a given sig
nal, all the visitors repair to this grove
America's Oldest Fire Machine.
The authorities of the town of Shel
burne, in Nova Scotia, have Just placed '
on exhibition the oldest fire machine in
North America. It was built in Eng- ,
land in the early part of the last cen
tury, and became the property of the '
Crown. When King George 111. as- ,
cended the throne of England, it was
considered a fine machine, and one day .
when the monarch's attention hap
pened to be called to Shelburne for
son. 3 reason or other, he decided that
he v-->uld make some sort of a present
to the place, and as r result presented
the town authorities with the machine. .
That was in 1795, a little more thr.n .
a hundred years ago; and the p*-ople .
of Shelburne thought themselves very
fortunate indeed to become possessors .
of so modern an aid in the fighting of ,
flames. It was very handsomely paint- .
ed, well built, of lasting material, and ,
for a long time it was the town's chief
protection from fire. As the years went .
on, however, genius began to produce
Are fighting apparatus that left the
poor old machine far away in the rear.
They are not quid: to change nor to
forget the old loves in Nova Scotia,
but about half a century ago It was
decided that King George's gift was a i
"At an elevation of Aye mtlec b i
little effect remains of daily tempera
ture variation. At this altitude —or-
mile—the atmospher- is free from th'>
disturbing influence of immediate sui
face radiation, and consequently theie
is but little change between the tem
perature of midday and midnight. Dis
tribution of temperature in the coli
wave or rainstorm areas may give i
clue to the future direction of thf
storm. Indeed, it may be discovered
that the storm center at that elevation
will not always coincide with the geo
gaphi~al storm center at the surface of
the earth. The displacement of this
center may possibly give some Indica
tion of the future direction of the
Copyright, 1897, by Bacheller Syndicate.
and the watermelon feast begins.
It is a poor year inueeii iui water
melons when Melon Day sees less than
20,000 of them at the grove. One of the
rules of the day is that every person
must carve his own melon, there being
no exception on account of sex, age, or
previous condition of appetite. The re
sult is that t'-c spectacle is one
never to be forgot
ten, for 'either
man nor woman
appears at best
either cutting or
eating a water
Everyone is sup
posed to eat all he
can, and the mel
ons that are left
are divided among
those who caro to
take the trouble to
remove them from
the grove. No ill
ness ever results
from this whole
sale consumption
of melons, because
no melon Is eaten
that Is not perfect
ly ripe.
It is probable
that many of those
who read this ar
ticle hay? unknow
ingly eaten a
Rocky Ford melon,
because the melons
from that section
of Colorado are
shipped all over
the United States
and sold as the
product of various
localities. It is a
peculiar Industry,
the raising of wa
termelons; but so
great has it be
come at Rocky
Ford that a wa
termelon growers'
association has
been formed. All
sorts of experi
ments are tried to
:.iake the melons
grow large, and
the melon In the
picture shows the
best that has be dp.
Copyright, 1897,
trifle too ancient, and that the safety
of the townspeople demanded a more
modern fire machine. Like the famous
old engine down at Asbury Park, N. J.,
which Founder Bradley bought for the
little ones of the place, the old Are
machine when mustered out, became
the plaything of the boys of Shel
burne, —and their sisters too, for that
It continued to serve this purpose for
a number of years, but finally it was
dismantled, the tub filled with earth
and placed In the front yard of a resi
dent of Shelburne, where It served as a
flower garden. For a very long time
the flowers grew thriftily In It during
the summer and the bulbs nestled close
to the old oaken surface during the
winter months. At last, however, relic
hunters discovered It, learned Its his
tory, withdrew It from mother earth's
bosom, restored It to fully as good a
condition as it exhibited the day that
His Brittanic Majesty bestowed it as
an evidence of his {""d will upon the
people of Shelburne, and turned it over
to the officials of the town to be placed
where everyone could see Just how Are
was fought In "ye olden tyme."
■Copyright, 1897, by Bacheller Syndicate.
Beginning of Our Biggest Gun.
How many people are there who I
now just how the biggest gun the |
'nited States government ever ordered I
ooks In Its Initial stage? Here la a
'Icturo of the great Ingot, just as It
vac east at the big steel worka at
Bethlehem. Pa. When It Iβ all com
pleted It will be six tons heavier, than
■he monster Krupp gun shown at the ,
World's Fair In Chicago, and five feet
'onger than the German gun.
The diameter of the Ingot as It Is ,
shown in the picture is 6 feet, 2 inches. (
Its length is 49 feet, 2 inches. It will '
be by far the most powerful gun ever
constructed. Lieutenant John F.
Meigs, formerly of the United States
Army, under whose supervision the
gun is being built, says of it:
"Its projectile will weigh about 2,300
pounds and Its velocity will be in the
neighborhood of 2,000 feet per second.
The range of such a gun would be very
great,—not less than ten miles; and its
extreme range, or the utmost distance
to which it could throw a projectile,
would be In the neighborhood of 15
miles, according to Lieut. Meigs. Its
power is so great from the weight of
i the projectile that no armor-clad could
! receive a blow from it without perfora
j tlon of her armor."
Picture to yourself a gun that weighs
! 126 tons. When that gun Is placed in
a position to defend New York Harbor,
which it will be one of these days, one
shot, if It struck fairly, would sink the
best war vessel that ever was built.
This is what is known as a 16-Inch
gun, while the United States has never
before attempted any heavier piece of
ordnance than a 12-inch gun. The new
cannon, as stated above, would throw
a projectile 15 miles; the nearest ap-
I proach to this distance heretofore was
the so-called Jubilee shot in England,
where the projectile traveled 12 miles.
All the metal used Is fluid and
pressed. The specifications, which are
being adhered to strictly, call for the
most exacting tests. It is necessary
that the gun should be composed en
tirely of forged metal. The actual cost
of the gun itself will be 1120,000. The
cost of the gun carriage and the tur
ret for the gun when it Is finally set up
will be about as great as that of the
weapon Itself. Beneath a gun of this
sort there must be a foundation of
fifty feet of solid concrete.
While this huge ingot is oast at
Bethlehem, the finishing touches will
be auded at the Watervllet Arsenal,
At Point Brcese, Just outside of the
limits of Philadelphia, at a bend of the
Schuylkill river that is found by every
breath of winter, 270 dogs are being
trained to draw large sledges in the
Klondike. They will be shipped there
as early as possible next spring and it
Is intended they shall form a line from
the gold Melds to some point on the
coast not yet determined.
It has been ascertained that the sup
ply of Esquimaux dogs, dogs obtain
able on the way to or in the Klondike
regions, is altogether insufficient to
meet the demand. This fact is what has
caused the curious spectacle that may
be seen any day at Point Breese.
The dogs are all sorts, none more
than two years old, none less than
twenty Inches high. Brawny dogs, too,
most of them, for a weakling would be
of small use In the Klondike. Every
one of them Is as young and vigorous
as a dog can be, and each day they are
all becoming more and more accus
tomed to the lack of those things that
dogs generally get In civilization.
Their quarters, when the dogs are not
being driven, are some windowless
sheds—windowless because there are
only openings where the windows used
to be, and the cold and storm come In
as they please without effort being
made to stop them. This Is for the
purpose of hardening the dogs, and ap
parently has succeeded. The animals'
food consists largely of horsemeat. on
the theory that It should make them
tough, hardy, and strong, and accus
tom them to the diet that is likely to
be theirs during their trips to and from
the gold fields. ,
The dogs are driven In teams of five,
three wheelers and two leaders, so
called even if they are Intended to
draw sledges. Just at present, how
ever, the sledge consists of a box
mounted on wheels, which t. i animals
draw over and upon a disused railway
tr-ck. Perhaps they may encounter
something In their Klondike travels In
the way of rough traveling that will
be more wearing on them than this,
but is very doubtful.
It le arduous work for Mr. Wheatley,
the trainer, but he Is confident that by
the time spring comes he will have
every dog thoroughly used to nam js,
to traveling under most unpleasant
conditions, and subsisting upon raw
meat. fish, or whatever he Is so for
tunate as to be able to get In the way
of food. In this condition the dogs will
prove very valuable In the land where
they are going.
Just as soon as It Is considered ad
visable—probably next April—these
dogs will be placed in a three story
kennel car and shipped to Seattle.
From Seattle they will be transported
to whatever point from which the
Klondike Is accessible that the owners
of the sledge line for which they are
being trained may decide upon.
Copyright, 1897, by Bacheller Syndicate.
Stanford's Big Mail.
The late E >nator Stanford used to re
ceive a larger mail than the President.
Once, while on a vacation away from
his secretary, he allowed It to accumu
late; and when his secretary sat down
to his taak of opening it he waa con
fronted by six large mail bags full of
I located at Weet Troy, N. T. Who-
I ever has been aboard of one of the btg
I battleships, like the lowa, the Massa
chusetts or the Indiana, will probably
remember the huge guns forward that
Impressed the observer with the Idea
that they could annihilate anything.
Let It be remembered that they are
mere toys as compared with this new
est and biggest gun of Uncle Sam's,
and a fair Idea of the latter's tremend
| ova power and size may be gained.
It will be a sorry day for the hostile
warship that tries to enter New York
harbor after this monstrous engine o<
war is mounted.
Copyright, 1897, by Bacheller Syndicate.
Ice Sailing on Skates.
Sailing on skates is very popular in
some localities. The skater crosses two
sticks, binds them and covers them
with canvas, making thewhole about zlx
feet by one or two In extent. He places
this sail against his back and runs his
arms through the sticks so as to hold
it. With a good wind he can go twenty
miles an hour over smooth ice, and he
can tack and beat against the wind,
just as in sailing a boat. It is very ex
citing, but it requires some daring to
start In, as the rapidity of the skater
is apt to terrify the man who has never
tried It. In skating with the wind one's
eyes water, but one can see quite well
enough to avoid holes. There would be
little chance of being saved If you did
blow in. However, It is an easy thing
to blow across a three-foot hole in go
ing at a high rate of speed. It is very
exciting sport, and very little practice
is required—though It demands com
paratively smooth ice for good Bkatlng.
If an obstruction is met your fall Is
pretty hard.
Gamblers' Jonahs.
Every follower of the races firmly be
lieves In a Jonah. Every man has his
particular Jonah, and there Is great
dodging about to avoid meeting the un
lucky man, who Is generally a good
fellow, but whose tips, while well
meant, and given with the best inten
tion in the world, Invariably go wrong.
Any reader who followß the horses can
name his Jonah off-hand, and will tell
you how, nine times out of ten, an ap
parently sure-money bet Is lost through
contact with the unlucky one.

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