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MINING FOR TIGERS
for this tar, and it was sold for a
liberally gave several few dollars a carload, the
schools and scientific workers in time making a
institutions the privbig hole in the soil which
ilege of mining for a filled with water, tar
certain number of and oil, and was called
months. With this tar lake.
understanding the There was one
Museum of the Los drawback to this tar. It
Angeles Normal Colwas in places filled with
lege and High School bones which in time
began work by putbecame so plentiful that
ting classes of young the demand for the tar
men and women volunteers at ceased. The pool was
work and one day when the supposed to be a menace,
writer and John Muir a horse and wagon backed
arrived on the scene the in one day and disappeared
sight was a strange one. and calves, sheep, colts,
Boys and girls in old etc., were at times lost in it.
suits were in a deep The surface is continually
hole on the shores of the broken with gas explosions
lake hard at work—one showing that it is over a
gang pumped out oil and number of tar springs of
water, another dug the the kind found on the
gravel and tar that oversurface.
laid the bones while sitting A few years ago, some
directly in the asphaltum one noticed a tooth
and tar of a “saREMAINS OF ELEPHANT SKULL.
were a tiger" in a
dozen or Los An
m o r e geles office
sters dignizing it as a
ging and rar i ty
working traced it
with file up to “La
THIGH BONE OF SLOTH. THE HEAD WEIGHED
a n d ranch.”
knives The atten
into the tion of pa
markable was attracted
mausoleum and the ex
ever uncovered traordinary discovery was made
in the United States. that the tar that had been mined
It is a curious thing to learn by Mexicans for years and sold
how these bones came here. for almost nothing contained the
Here and there little circular skeletons and bones of animals nd hones of animals SKULL OF GIGANTIC
outpourings of tar appear, black so rare and valuable
and shining. Often that the bulk thrown
these are in circular away represented a
shape, again they great fortune.
run into little gulLa Brea at once became the cynosure lies and form streams. The prevailing of the eyes of the scientific world. In the west wind blows dust, sand and gravel meantime the entire region had become a over it and very soon the surface has the great oil field and the owners very appearance of being hard. If rain falls it
point collects on the tar and
for the space of a quarter stands in big or little
of a mile and is about pools, a mouse or a
fifteen feet deep. skunk comes to
Strange animals drink, it steps in
lived here in these and is imme
days. Lions, a tiger diately caught
with a long daggerby the tar,
like tooth with a which is remark
sa w-like edge, ably tenacious. The
ducks, geese, coyanimal struggles, falls
otes, wolves, rabover, becomes completely en
bits, mice, giant tangled and in a day or two
wolves, condors, completely disappears. A
peacocks, bears, horses, bison, skunk, a crow or raven, a
camels, the mammoth and huge meadow lark, have been
ground sloths of a ton or more known to be trapped within a
weight. Horses and camels indivery short time. The same situ
cating the middle of the great ation held true a half million or
Pleiocene era. These animals a million years ago, though
lived in the adjacent mountains perhaps the springs were bigger
SKULL OF A SABRE
now known as the Sierra Santa and larger and certainly in the Tooth TIGER.“ Monica and roamed the plains Pleiocene time the animals were. With these fangs the and forests where Hollywood.
great beast could dis. different.
embowel elephants. Los Angeles and Pasadena now Long ago an earthquake or
stand. They came down to the something had made a sharp fold in the place to drink and met the fate we have rock and the mass of tar beneath had seen that befell the skunk been forced upward by the gas and and the meadow lark. pressure forming the same traps until
The elephant wading today the region is covered with tar into the innocent-look
ing pool and sand, sank, without knowing it, up to its knees. But when it attempted to move it was trapped. Its mighty struggles, its trumpeting, its rage and fear can be imagined. At last it fell or stumbled and was held by tle treacherous tar. Its struggles attracted the
ment, leaped and by throwing its mouth One mine worked by a professor of wide open, buried its terrible weapons in geology in the University of California the body of the elephant, and then by pul- seemed a solid mass of bones for fifteen ling back disemboweled it with one feet. In one place a mammoth had been motion.
found, on top of this several sabre tooth But the elephant was not dead, and its tigers were piled, together with them, struggles threw the sabre tooth tiger off. a gigantic sloth, and it was evident that The tiger sank into the tar and was animals of all kinds had been piled in, one caught and in a moment the two were on top of another, until there were layers engaged in a life and death struggle. and heaps of tragedies spread out for a Slowly but surely the tar crept up over quarter of a mile, a trap so gigantic, so them, and their struggles became less and full of victims that it can hardly be comless, and at last they were smothered. prehended.
Long ago coyotes, wolves and other stable near these fields has been animals which gather about wounded known to be piled with the bones, big animals have assembled at the feast. long sloth heads, tusks, etc., representing Venturing in they were caught. Vul- thousands of animals. The Los Angeles tures came and met the same fate. high school students and professors are
Replace these animals with bison, said to have taken out ten or twelve tons camels, horses—colts were caught here as of bones, a mass which will take years to late as 1885—and some idea can be sort out and reassemble, but already a formed of how this extraordinary deposit fine series of sabre tooth tigers have been of bones resulted.
secured from them and mounted.
EUROPE'S FASTEST EXPRESS
By F. C. COLEMAN
HE “Nord-Express” service The previous largest engines in Europe connecting Paris with Brus- are the “Pacific” type of the Belgian sels, Berlin, the Baltic sea- State Railways, which have four cylinboard and St. Petersburg, ders. The new Nord engines have, how
ranks as the fastest train ever, two high-pressure cylinders. While schedule in Europe, and, with 400 tons steam pressure in the Belgian engines is coach load, the engine attains a speed of 200 pounds per square inch, the French 75 miles per hour. By the French North- engines carry a pressure of 227.5 pounds ern Company's route, the distance be- per square inch with direct admission tween Paris and Berlin is 6721/2 miles from the boiler to all the cylinders, whenand the eastward journey is made in 15 ever it is found desirable for the first turn hours 28 minutes, allowing for the dif- or two of the wheels when starting. Subference between west and mid-European sequently, of course, the boiler supplies time. The 9534 miles between Paris and only the two small cylinders. St. Quentin is regularly covered in 93, 94 These French engines, being very and 96 minutes, while the next run of much more powerful in starting effort 5372 miles from St. Quentin to Erquel- than the Belgian locomotives, are not lines—the Belgian frontier station—is only the same weight as the latter, but booked at 55 minutes. Two engines of a the boilers of the Nord engines have 23 most powerful type have been built for per cent. more heating surface than the use in this service. Tests are being made Belgian simple engines. But the chief as to their actual efficiency. Both these interest in these new locomotives is the engines are fitted with apparatus for novel solution of the cylinder problem, highly-superheated steam. Instead of which for years past has been an obstacle constructing the ordinary type boiler for in the design of very powerful locomosaturated steam and placing a water-tube tives, the difficulty occurring when speboiler for superheated steam over a cially large cylinders are necessary, either simple engine, according to the system for low-pressure saturated steam, superof tests at present in vogue, the same heated steam, or extra low-pressure in system of
one-half of a compound engine. In runcompound
ning order, the engine ing is here
weighs 102 employed,
tons. The tenthus narrow 1 y
HUGE LOCOMOTIVE THAT MAKES SEVENTY MILES AN HOUR ON ITS RUN FROM PARIS
confining the test merely to the relative der weighs 561/2 tons, so that in working advantages of the ordinary and the water- order these “Baltic” locomotives have a tube boiler.
total weight on rails of 15872 tons.
electric lighting system can three times as much light for the amount be made a paying proposition of electricity used as the carbon lamp on the farm. Ten years ago, does. Tungstens cost more than the carif a man had said that motor bon lamps but they reduce the cost of the
cars would be found on hun- battery enough to make them a good dreds of farms, there would have been investment. some danger of his having to face a court The common rural lighting outfit of inquiry. But as the demand has grown offered for sale includes a dynamo to the price has decreased until today many generate the electricity, a gasoline engine farmers use the motor car for work as to run the dynamo, a switchboard, and a well as pleasure. The same will be true storage battery to store electrical energy of farmers' electric lighting outfits. For to be used by the lamps and small motors demonstrating and experimental pur- without running the engine. A good, poses, an outfit such as a farmer might complete system can be purchased and care to buy has been installed in the installed for less than five hundred doldepartment of electrical engineering at lars, not much more than one of the the Kansas State Agricultural College. dangerous gas plants cost. This can be During the last State Farmers' Institute lowered if the farmer has a gasoline more than four hundred farmers visited engine or wires his house, himself. Electhis outfit and listened to the explanations tric lights will lower the insurance rate of the means of operation.
because there is not so much danger of Since the perfection of the tungsten fire when they are used as when gas, lamps, a small lighting plant has been gasoline, acetylene, or coal-oil lamps are possible. A tungsten lamp has a filament burned. inside the glass bulb made of a metal, A one horse-power engine or an additungsten, in place of the carbon which is tional horse-power to any engine, will used in the common electric lights. A run a dynamo large enough for a tenlamp with this tungsten filament gives ampere outfit. A ten-ampere outfit is