« PreviousContinue »
of the Chicago & Pacific Elevator Company, Chicago, Ill. Loss, over $1,000,000.
Railroad Wrecks.-On October 25 an eastbound accommodation train came into collision with a westbound train conveying a G. A. R. excursion on the St. Louis & San Francisco railroad near Meramec Highlands, not far from St. Louis, Mo. Nine people were killed outright, and many injured. The disaster is said to have been caused by carelessness on the part of the engineer of the excursion train.
The most appalling disaster in the South since that near Statesville, N. C., in 1891 (Vol. 1, p. 426), occurred December 27 at the Southern Railway Company's bridge over the Cahawba river near Birmingham, Ala. A local train of the Birmingham Mineral railway, a branch of the Louisville & Nashville system, while crossing the bridge, left the track, and, with two large spans of the bridge, plunged into the river 100 feet below. The wreck took fire immediately, and was burned to the water's edge. Over twenty-three people were either killed outright or roasted to death. Some miscreant or miscreants, presumably with a view to robbery, had loosened a rail on the track. A similar dastardly attempt had been made four days previously.
Marine Disasters.-On October 20 the steamer Arago, belonging to the Oregon Improvement Company, went ashore and was totally wrecked, during a fog, at the entrance to Coos Bay harbor on the southern Oregon coast; loss of life unknown, but considerable.
On November 22 the steamer San Benito, from Tacoma, Wash., for San Francisco, Cal., laden with coal, was driven ashore in a gale. A large part of the crew were drowned.
Mining Disasters.-On October 29 an explosion of gas in No. 3 shaft of the Lehigh & Wilkesbarre Company, near Wilkesbarre, Penn., killed six men.
On December 16 six miners were crushed to death by falling rock loosened by a blast in the Holy Cross mine near Red Cliff, Colo.
On December 26 an explosion at the Maule mine near Princeton, Ind., caused six deaths.
On October 6, 7, and 8, an unusually severe gale swept the Irish sea, strewing the western coast of England and Wales with wrecks. The Daunt's Rock lightship, at the
entrance to the harbor of Queenstown, Ireland, was carried from its moorings.
Early in October great floods in eastern Siberia rendered thousands homeless and destitute. Many large washouts were reported along the line of the trans-Siberian railway. The disaster is felt most severely in the agricultural districts.
About November 2 a tidal wave from the Atlantic ocean inundated the town of Huelva, Spain, causing great loss of life and property.
The Windward and Leeward islands, about December 2, were swept by a cyclone which caused tremendous loss of life. St. Vincent and Montserrat suffered very severely, many sugar, coffee, and cotton plantations being inundated. Great damage to property was also done in Trinidad and Barbadoes.
On November 2, the bursting of a waterspout over one of the Azores islands, rendered thousands homeless, and involved the loss of many lives.
On November 26 a terrible storm raged around Athens, Greece, causing the Ilissus and Cephissus rivers to overflow their banks and flood the Piræus. The damage to property is estimated as high as $1,000,000, and over 100 lives were lost. The destruction of the forests which formerly covered the mountains is assigned as chief cause of the frequent disastrous floods in Greece.
On November 17 the British steamer Memphis, from Montreal, Que., November 4, for Bristol, Eng., was wrecked near Mizen Head on the south coast of Ireland, with a loss of ten lives.
The most terrible disaster of the quarter at sea occurred on the night of December 7, when the steamer Salier of the North German Lloyd line, Captain Wempe, from Bremen for Buenos Ayres, in a dense fog, struck on the shoals four miles north of Villagracia off the Spanish coast, and went down with all on board, including, it is stated, 214 passengers, besides her pilot and crew of sixty-six
The Salier was a bark rigged iron-screw steamer of 3,214 gross, and 2,229 net tonnage, 351 feet 2 inches long. 39 feet beam, and 32 feet deep. She was built in Hull, Eng., in 1875.
About December 10 the German ship Rajah of 1,230 tons, built at Liverpool in 1864, from Barry, Wales, for Hong Kong, foundered in the Bristol channel with a loss of seventeen out of her crew of nineteen.
The city of Guayaquil, Ecuador, which was visited by a serious fire in February, 1896 (p. 223), suffered again
from the same cause, October 7. The whole business quarter, including the postoffice and government house, was destroyed. Loss estimated at $5,000,000, besides over 100 lives. The fire is believed to have been incendiary. A fire destroyed business property to the value of about $1,000,000 in Bradford, Eng., November 30.
Southwestern Iceland has suffered severely from earthquake shocks occurring at intervals since August 26. The disturbances were renewed October 4, when much destruction was wrought to farm houses and cattle.
On December 11 the collapse of a building in Xeres, Spain, which, in its fall, brought down an adjoining tenement house, caused the death of over twelve people. Fully 110 were buried in the ruins.
On December 19 an explosion in a coal mine in Resicza, Hungary, killed forty miners outright.
A landslide caused by heavy falls of rain occurred about December 28 near Rathmore, County Kerry, Ireland. A family of nine persons named Donnelly, lost their lives. The village of Santa Anna di Pelago, Italy, was also annihilated by a landslide at the same time.
Political Economy, Civics, and Sociology:—
The Principles of Sociology. three volumes. Vol. 3. pp. 654. New York: D. Appleton & Co.
By Herbert Spencer.
We have already (p. 922) spoken of the appearance of this volume as completing Mr. Spencer's elaborate system of synthetic philosophy. a task which for over thirty-five years he has pursued with unfaltering perseverance, in the face of much discouragement, and in spite of indifferent health. Rarely, if ever, in the history of philosophy, have speculations been based on a wider range of knowledge. It is impossible not to be struck by the wide sweep of the inquiries, the vast reading which the task has involved, and the magnificence of the conception first shadowed forth in the Social Statics, clearly stated in the First Principles, and illustrated in a thousand ways in the later volumes.
The present volume deals with ecclesiastical, professional, and industrial institutions; and includes a powerful plea for liberty-liberty in industry, politics, and the realm of opinion; freedom from the tyranny of inspectors, statutes, trades unions, bureaucracy, and mili
tarism. Of the "near future" Mr. Spencer writes despondently. For the time, evil has triumphed, and the forces of freedom are overborne in the struggle. But of the distant future Mr. Spencer does not despair. Strong men will arise even as of old-"people before whom the socialistic organization will go down like a house of cards." Relative, though not absolute, optimism is a reasonable mood. Higher types of society will be produced. Impediments to progress will be removed. The rebarbarization" constantly undoing the work of civilization, may be stifled.
Genius and Degeneration. A Psychological Study. By Dr. William Hirsch. Translated from the second edition of the German work. Uniform with Degeneration. 8vo. $3.50. New York: D. Appleton & Co.
This was not primarily designed as a reply to the pessimistic theories of Nordau and Lombroso, but is an independent work of calm and sober judgment, though frequently becoming a polemic against the positions taken by those writers. Nordau attacked only the moderns of our own day and generation. Lombroso went further, and strove to show that all genius-even the genius of Dante and Shakespeare was a species of mental disorder. Hirsch, however, restores our reverence for intellectual greatness; he does not lower intellectuality to the level of mediocrity, but demonstrates that genius, instead of being a result of weakness, is a sign of health and strength. Genius and insanity are two totally different things, though they may co-exist in exceptional cases, just like stupidity and insanity.
PUBLICATIONS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE, PHILADELPHIA, PENN.
Crime and the Census. By Prof. R. P. Falkner of the University of Pennsylvania. Paper. 8vo. 32 pp. Price
As an evidence of the moral condition of the people of the United States, the author shows that the figures of the last census are defective. While other nations measure the amount of crime by the number of convictions, we estimate it by the number of persons in prison. Since this number depends on the length of the sentences as well as on the number of commitments, it is not an accurate measure. Professor Falkner shows that our customary calculations distort the proportions of crime to be attributed to the males in the community, to the colored race, and to foreigners; while they give a very false view of the relative frequency of different classes of crimes. Homicide, burglary, etc., appear to be much more prevalent than they really are.
Values, Positive and Relative. By Prof. W. G. L. Taylor of the University of Nebraska. Paper. 8vo. 40 pp. Price 30 cents.
The writer contrasts in clever fashion the views of older and newer economists on this much discussed topic, and depicts clearly the relation between speculation and experience.
The First Apportionment of Federal Representatives in the United States. By Prof. E. J. James of the University of Chicago. Paper. 8vo. Price 35 cents.
4th Qr., 1896. A remarkably clear treatment of difficult and important questions relating to our early constitutional history, which are generally too little understood. The passage of the first apportionment bill gave occasion to the first real important constitutional debate under the constitution, and called forth the first presidential veto. Washington's veto compelled a reconsideration and the acceptance of a new bill involving quite a different process in the assignment of representatives. It is interesting to note that the arguments advanced by Washington in his veto message have been practically repudiated by succeeding generations of statesmen and jurists; and that the method which he insisted upon, although accepted at the time, and continued as the basis of subsequent apportionments for fifty years, was finally rejected as being plainly unconstitutional and unfair.
Postal Savings Banks. By E. T. Heyn. Paper. 8vo. 32 pp. Price 25 cents.
Presents strong arguments in favor of the establishment of a postal savings bank system in the United States.
A Neglected Chapter in the Life of Comte. By W. H. Schoff. Paper. 8vo. 24 pp. Price 25 cents.
A candid examination of the myth which makes the positivist Auguste Comte the foremost of modern philosophers and the father of the science of sociology. Mr. Schoff shows how the parts of Comte's work arose under different sets of influences, and are wholly unreconcilable. The neglected chapter of the philosopher's life was the period of his insanity, which the writer discreetly hints may furnish an explanation of the confusion which a fair-minded examination of his work as a whole, despite its brilliancy at times, cannot fail to reveal.
Relation of Sociology to Psychology. By Professor S. N. Patten. Paper. 8vo. 32 pp. Price 25 cents.
In the opinion of the author, neither biology nor psychology, nor in fact any special science, can furnish an adequate basis for the superstructure of sociology, which must rest on foundations peculiar to itself.
The Prophets of Israel. By Professor C. H. Cornill of the University of Königsberg. Translated by S. F. Corkran. Paper. 194 pp. Indexed. Chicago: Open Court Publishing Co. Price 25c.
Contains a series of popular sketches from Old Testament his tory, based on the rigorous historical mode of view which has wrought a revolution in Old Testament research. The author is an orthodox Christian, who has devoted his life to the investigation of the religious evolution of the Israelitic and Christian faiths.
Ancient India. Its Language and Religions. By Professor H. Oldenberg. Paper. 110 pp. Indexed. Chicago: Open Court Publishing Co. Price 25 cents.
This little work forms a very valuable number of the Religion of Science library, presenting in interesting, concise, and readable style