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Introduction This report has been undertaken for a special reason. It is to explain to the taxpayer just why so many of his dollars are going into the American effort to explore space, and to indicate what he can expect in return which is of value to him. Such an explanation, even after 2 years of relatively high-geared activity in the space exploration field, appears to be warranted. There is still a segment of the U.S. population which has... more...

Chapter I. INTRODUCTION. In the last three hundred years there have been many questions of general interest before the American people. It is doubtful, however, if there is another problem, which is as warmly debated to-day as ever and whose solution is yet so uncertain, as that of the Negro. In the second decade of the seventeenth century protests were being filed against black slavery, but the system was continued for nearly 250 years. The... more...

CHAPTER I. Man's Duel with Nature Of all man's great achievements none is, perhaps, more full of human interest than are those concerned with flight. We regard ourselves as remarkable beings, and our wonderful discoveries in science and invention induce us to believe we are far and away the cleverest of all the living creatures in the great scheme of Creation. And yet in the matter of flight the birds beat us; what has taken us years of... more...

MY EXCUSE My sixtieth birthday is a thing of yesterday, and I have, therefore, more than half descended the western slope. I have no quarrel with life or with time, for both have been polite to me; and I wish to give an account of the past seven years to prove the politeness of life, and to show how time has made amends to me for the forced resignation of my professional ambitions. For twenty-five years, up to 1895, I practised medicine and... more...

CHAPTER I WHAT GOES TO MAKE UP PERMANENT FERTILITY IT IS an old saying that "any fool can farm," and this was almost the truth when farming consisted chiefly in reducing the fertility of new, rich land secured at practically no cost from a generous Government. But to restore depleted soils to high productive power in economic systems is no fool's job, for it requires mental as well as muscular energy; and no apologies should be expected from... more...


CHAPTER I. THE DAWN OF AERONAUTICS. "He that would learn to fly must be brought up to the constant practice of it from his youth, trying first only to use his wings as a tame goose will do, so by degrees learning to rise higher till he attain unto skill and confidence." So wrote Wilkins, Bishop of Chester, who was reckoned a man of genius and learning in the days of the Commonwealth. But so soon as we come to inquire into the matter we find... more...

First Dream. "Any fool can get into a hole."—Old Chinese proverb. "If left to you, for defence make spades."—Bridge Maxim. I felt lonely, and not a little sad, as I stood on the bank of the river near Duffer's Drift and watched the red dust haze, raised by the southward departing column in the distance, turn slowly into gold as it hung in the afternoon sunlight. It was just three o'clock, and here I was on the banks of the... more...

CHAPTER ONE THE DEVELOPMENT OF ELECTRICITY The phenomenon which Thales had observed and recorded five centuries before the birth of Christ aroused the interest of many scientists through the ages. They made various practical experiments in their efforts to identify the elusive force which Thales had likened to a 'soul' and which we now know to have been static electricity. Of all forms of energy, electricity is the most baffling and difficult... more...

The year 1913 marks the close of the first fifty years since Abraham Lincoln issued that famous edict known as the emancipation proclamation, by which physical freedom was vouchsafed to the slaves and the descendants of slaves in this country. And it would seem entirely fit and proper that those who were either directly or indirectly benefited by that proclamation should pause long enough at this period in their national life to review the past,... more...

CHAPTER I. THE POWER OF THE AIR. "That's it, Jack. Let her out!" "Suffering speed laws of Squantum, but she can travel!" exclaimed Dick Donovan, redheaded and voluble. "I tell you, electricity is the thing. Beats gasoline a million ways," chimed in Tom Jesson. Tom sat beside his cousin, Jack Chadwick, on the driver's seat of a curious-looking automobile which was whizzing down the smooth, broad, green-bordered road that led to Nestorville,... more...