Page images

The trees were planted to protect the apiary from the hot rays of the summer sun.

[graphic][merged small][merged small]

“How doth the busy little bee made honey,” according to the old standImprove each shining hour:

ards, is a thing of the past. By gathering honey all the day

Constant improvement in the manageFrom every opening flower." ment of bees is being made. Before the

introduction of the movable comb honey Since the foregoing lines were written was cut out in chunks, after being prothe only feature of bee-keeping that has duced in an old box placed on top of the remained unchanged is the bee's industry. body of the hive. Practically all hives now Whereas only a few decades ago the bees are of the same general construction, the used to store up their honey in rough lower part being box-like, about twenty boxes, hollow trees, or straw hives, neces- inches long, fifteen inches wide, and sitating their own destruction with brim- eleven inches high, with a movable botstone fumes before the owner could ob- tom projecting as an alighting board for tain the sweets, now they make their the bees. In this box are hung eight homes in machine-prepared hives, store frames, on which the bees build their their honey in machine-made frames, combs. A frame from one hive may be build their combs on machine-made bases placed in any other. of wax, prepared to save them work, The equipment for securing comb and, if they are kept for the production honey for sale consists of a box set on top of "strained" honey, are robbed regu- of the body of the hive and containing larly of the combs, which are emptied of twenty-four sections or frames four and honey in an extractor, a metal invention one-fourth inches square, in which the of machinists of recent years. “Hand- combs are built. Each of these will contain a pound of honey. Rows of four each are set lengthwise of the hive, in racks, and to secure straight combs wooden partition boards--a recent invention-having holes as doorways for the bees, are put between each row.

The most important invention, which has increased the yield of first-class honey at least one-half, is "comb foundation,” which now is used by almost every apiarist. This consists of thin sheets of wax run between steel die rollers, which stamp upon them the bases of the cells and make them of the same thickness, shape, etc., as the base of the comb built by the bees themselves. The labor expended by the bees in making a pound of wax for comb has been found to

READY FOR SWARM. equal that which would be required in Side of hive is removed, showing construction. producing thirty pounds of honey, so the supplying of this foundation to the bees existed. The smoker consists of a tin saves them an immense amount of labor. firepot with a nozzle, attached to a belPieces of this prepared beeswax, which lows. The apparatus is about eighteen is so delicate that a pound contains fif- inches long and is arranged so that whenteen square feet, are attached to the in- ever the bellows is pressed a stream of side of the sections or boxes for comb smoke issues from the nozzle. Rags, honey, and are called "starters." The corncobs, and the like are used for fuel, bees extend the bases of the cells and the and when the smoke is blown into the foundation insures straight combs. entrance of the hive the bees immediately

In handling the bees their owner uses are terror-stricken and begin to gorge several other recent inventions, among themselves with honey. Their idea, it is them the “smoker.” With a silk veil

With a silk veil supposed, is that they will be driven out over his face and armed with the “smok- of their home and that they must proviser," the apiarist can overcome the most ion themselves for their wanderings; at pugnacious colony of bees which ever has any rate, while they are eating they can

not sting, and, come what will, they will not stop eating.

Queens may be grown at will—through recent inventions and discoveries and thousands are sent by mail from apiaries to bee-keepers who wish to improve their stock, for there are thoroughbred bees well as horses or cattle, and a fine queen of the Italian variety, coming from a strain whose ancestors made 200 pounds of honey per hive per annum,

sold last

summer for $100. ForHANDLING THE BEES.

tunes have been made in Note "smoker" on hive. When smoke is blown into their midst the little insects become confused, and gorge themselves with honey.

queen rearing.




An invention of great value to the in- season, and as they are spared the labor dustry is the queen excluder, one of the of secreting or producing the wax, the most ingenious of all. Queens often, production of extracted honey amounts when they have filled with eggs the to several times the output of comb combs in the body of the hive, ascend to honey. The extracted product sells for the sections above and lay eggs there. around seven cents a pound, while the As a bee will hatch where every egg is comb honey brings around twenty cents. laid, and as the presence of the larvæ If the comb were destroyed each time will prevent the sale of the honey, the liquid honey was secured, the price of the

[graphic][merged small]

owners place between the body and the latter per pound would be greater than upper part of the hive a zinc screen of that of the comb honey. sufficient mesh to allow the workers to In the old days the bee-keeper used to enter, but which excludes the queen. stay away from church on the ground

Another invention, and one of the most that he “expected his bees would swarm" valuable, is the honey extractor. Before and had to be there to watch them. He it was devised “strained honey” used to need not deprive himself of spiritual inbe produced by cutting out the combs. struction longer on that score, as for ten and melting them or squeezing the honey years automatic swarm hivers have been out of them. In either case the honey in successful operation everywhere-alwas mixed with impurities and the comb, most—that bees are kept. These consist which required so much labor on the of a trap or box made of zinc with part of the bees, was destroyed. Now meshes large enough to prevent the queen the apiarists take the frames from the from passing out when the trap is placed hives, cut the cappings from the combs, at the entrance to the hive, but allowing and place the combs in a centrifugal ma- the workers to pass freely. The swarm chine whose whirling motion drives all will issue as usual, but soon will discover the honey from the cells, but leaves the the loss of its queen. Contrary to gencomb uninjured, ready to be filled again. eral belief the queen does not lead the L’nder this system the bees often fill each swarm, but is almost the last to leave. comb as many as half a dozen times in a When the bees discover they have broken tories, one of them employing 400 men, are kept busy the year round turning out supplies for bee-keepers. The last government census estimates the value of the honey crop at $20,000,000 a year, with 300,000 apiarists-in round numbers-sharing in the fortune. There are enough bees in the United States to sting to death every inhabitant, for each hive contains from 30,000 to 50,000 of them, a peck to a half bushel in a colony. The life of the swarm is the queen, for she

alone lays eggs, her output often being ENVELOPE FOR MAILING QUEEN BEE.

20,000 a day. The worker bees, which

constitute the bulk of the swarm, are less home ties without the presence of their developed females, and in the summer queen they will return to the hive. Mean- each colony has a few hundred drones or while the queen, unable to get outdoors. males. Fifteen dollars is sufficient to buy has passed through a cone in the zinc the amateur a colony of bees, a couple of screen, and finds herself imprisoned in a extra hives for new swarms, 500 boxes compartment a few inches square. for comb honey, a pound of comb foun

A number of other inventions are used dation, a smoker, and other supplies deby up-to-date apiarists, and twenty fac- sirable in securing a start in bee-keeping.

[graphic][merged small]

Bequest to American Boys

By H. D. Jones
UTTING Gordian knots to coat, the soiling of his dainty hands or

solve problems, or cutting the damaging of his carefully manicured
across lots to reach ob- finger nails. Mr. Williamson embodied
jectives, are considered this sentiment in the foundation deed of
American prerogatives in the school, when he wrote:

these days. As such they "I desire to have impressed upon every appealed forcibly to a quiet little Quaker scholar and inmate of the school the one gentleman who not long ago passed to great lesson that in this country every his reward leaving a lasting monument to able-bodied, healthy young man who has this tendency to break away from beaten learned a good mechanical trade and is tracks. It takes the shape of a free truthful, honest, frugal, temperate and school in Delaware County, Pennsyl- industrious, is certain to succeed in life vania, for the training of young men in and to become a useful and respected mechanical trades. The school is built, member of society." endowed and already turning out young Among the trades that the founder men fully equipped to restore the Ameri- suggested should be taught at this school can mechanic to his lost place as the peer were those of baker, blacksmith, brickof the workmen of the world.

layer, butcher, cabinet-maker, car-builder, The founder of this school, Isaiah V. carpenter, carriage-maker, coppersmith, Williamson, was so impressed with the the crafts of constructing, managing and wisdom of leaving his millions to the es- repairing electrical appliances and appa

[graphic][ocr errors]



tablishment of a trade school that he ratus, foundryman, gas-fitter, goldselected the building as his tomb and beater, harness-maker, hatter, locksmith, there he is buried, beneath the main en- machinist, marble-mason, molder, painttrance of the administration edifice. er, paper-hanger, pattern-maker, plas

The air is full just now of remon- terer, plumber, printer, saddler, shoestrances from far-seeing Americans maker, steam engineer, slater, stone-cutagainst the tendency of the young man ter, stonemason, tailor, tiler, tinsmith, of the period to refrain from any kind of turner, and wheelwright. It was imposwork that necessitates the removal of his sible to give instruction in all these

« PreviousContinue »