THE GREAT ROUND WORLD AND WHAT IS GOING ON IN IT
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VOL. 1 JULY 8, 1897. NO. 35
England has been spending a very busy week celebrating the Queen's Jubilee.
On such occasions, when the attention of the world is centred upon a country, it seems to be the custom to publish startling rumors, to keep up the excitement.
The Jubilee has been no exception to this rule. The wildest reports have been circulated.
One account declared that the Queen was totally blind, and would not be able to enjoy any of the festivities prepared in her honor.
This was promptly contradicted, but was soon revived with the addition that the story was "strictly true," but that London was hushing it up until the Jubilee was over.
Following closely on the heels of this came a new story, that Queen Victoria was about to abdicate. This story stated that the Prince of Wales would not be crowned King while his mother lived, but would occupy the throne.
Abdication is the act of giving up or relinquishing the right to hold an office. It is the same as resigning, but the word is almost without exception used in the case of a sovereign or ruler of a country.
Abdication should be an act of free will on the part of the person who resigns.
Queen Liliuokalani claims that she is still the rightful Queen of Hawaii, because, though she signed an act of abdication, she says, she did not do it of her own free will, but was forced to sign by the present government of the islands.
As to the story of Queen Victoria's abdicating: she is now seventy-eight years old, and she may well be wearied with the cares of government, but she cannot abdicate unless Parliament is willing that she shall do so.
England has, in the past, had many troubles brought upon her by unwise, weak, or wicked kings, and when James II. fled to France the English people felt they had had enough ill treatment at the hands of kings, and determined to take away absolute power from future kings.
The people had some cause to be afraid of too much power in the hands of the king at that time, for James II. was the son of Charles I., who had so mismanaged the country that the people finally had him beheaded. He was also the brother of Charles II., who had been called to the throne after the death of Cromwell, and who had spent the years of his reign in every kind of folly and wickedness. The English people made up their minds to stand no nonsense from James; so, when he showed himself utterly incapable of ruling the country, the nobles invited William of Orange, the husband of James' daughter Mary, to occupy the throne.
When his last hope was gone, and he saw that he would be obliged to fly the country, James showed the people how wise they had been to get rid of him.
He had dissolved Parliament and disbanded the army, so that there was no form of government in the country, no army to preserve order, and, as he thought, no possibility of calling a government together, because he had thrown the Great Seal into the Thames River, without which and his signature, as he supposed, no acts would be legal.
James II., sworn to protect and preserve the rights of the English people, tried by these acts to hand them over to anarchy and mob-rule.
But Cromwell had given the people some lessons in governing without the help of kings, and so Parliament overcame these difficulties, as you will see if you read the history of England.
Because of the difficulties the King had caused, Parliament passed certain new laws, limiting the power of the sovereign.
The sovereign of England therefore rules subject to the will of the people, and it is said that the British government is one of the most perfect forms of republican government existing.
The Jubilee festivities began Sunday, June 20th, the actual sixtieth anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne. This was celebrated by thanksgiving services throughout the entire kingdom and its colonies; the Queen and her family, the Members of Parliament, and the officials throughout the kingdom and the colonies, attending divine service.
On Monday Her Majesty went to Buckingham Palace, her London residence, and received the notable foreigners who had come to do her honor, and the officers of her various governments throughout the world.
Tuesday was the day of the great procession, when the Queen rode in state through London to take part in the public thanksgiving at St. Paul's Cathedral.
This service was held on the steps of the Cathedral, the Queen remaining in her carriage, surrounded by her family, her guests, and the soldiers—joining in the service of praise with her people.
It must have been an impressive ceremony—in the midst of a vast throng of princes, nobles, and soldiers in splendid uniforms, this quiet little old lady in black, listening with bowed head to the prayers, and then raising her face to smile on her people. The prayers being over, the crowds, that had silently watched the service, with one voice joined in the fine old anthem, "God Save the Queen."
The Queen was escorted to and from the cathedral by the most brilliant array of princes this century has seen. Thirty-six princes, representing nearly every monarch on earth, rode three by three to escort Victoria.
Before leaving Buckingham Palace to go to St. Paul's, the Queen sent a message of thanks to every part of her vast empire. Arrangements had been made that Her Majesty should personally despatch these telegrams; wires had been laid and everything arranged, so that when she pressed the button in the palace the telegrams were sent forth to her colonies, straight from the royal hand. In three hours replies had been received from all but three of the forty-three colonies to which her message had been despatched.
The Jubilee celebrations were continued through the week, with state dinners and concerts, and an address from the Parliament on Wednesday; a visit to Eton College, the royal school, on Thursday; a review of the fire brigades on Friday, and of the navy on Saturday. A pretty busy week for a person of seventy-eight years.
The celebration was considered very remarkable as a demonstration of naval and military strength.
Fifty thousand troops marched in line on Tuesday, and at the naval review England was represented by more war-vessels than any other power possesses.
Troops had been sent from British colonies in Asia, Africa, North and South America, and Oceanica. From all quarters of the globe people of many races, colors, and languages came together to acknowledge Victoria as their Queen.
The Jubilee week must have been a proud season for Englishmen—they had a fine opportunity to show the world the power of their great empire.
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The Irish members of Parliament persisted in their refusal to join in the Jubilee ceremonies.
When it was proposed in the House of Commons that an address of congratulation be sent to the Queen, the Irish members made a scene.
They protested against any message being sent, unless it contained a statement that during the sixty years of Victoria's reign Ireland had been subject to much suffering and deprived of her rights, and that therefore the Irish members of Parliament were dissatisfied and unable to join in the celebrations.
The House of Commons would not entertain this, and a motion was passed that the address should be sent to the Queen.
The Irish members continued their protests after the vote had been taken, declaring it false and absurd to present the address when it did not express the sentiment of the House, but only of a portion of it.
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Captain Boycott has just died. You are probably familiar with the name, and with the meaning of the word "boycott," but it may interest you to know what a very young word it is, only seventeen years old, having been coined in 1880, and that it derives its origin from this very Captain Boycott who has just passed away.
He was a captain in the English army. After a while he sold out his commission, and settled down as a farmer in Connemara, Ireland. He became the agent of an Irish landlord named Lord Erne, and it was his duty to manage the estate, see to the sowing and gathering of crops, keep the houses on the property in repair, and collect the rents from the tenants.
The Irish had long been complaining that their rents were too heavy, and that their landlords did nothing for them in return for the money collected. There was a good deal of truth in these complaints; the landlords hardly ever went near their estates, and seemed to care only for the money they got from the tenants. The whole conduct of affairs was left in the hands of the agents, who were obliged to grind the money out of the tenants to supply the wants of their masters.
It does not appear that Captain Boycott was more severe than other agents, but he does seem to have been less in sympathy with the peasants.
There had been a long period of bad harvests followed by a famine, and the tenants could not pay their rents. They begged that their back rent might be forgiven them, and their future rents lowered.
All over Ireland similar demands were being made. Irish agitators, as they were called, were holding meetings all over the country, advising the peasants to make these demands. Among the men who addressed the people were Charles Stewart Parnell, John Dillon, and Michael Davitt, all members of Parliament.
Excitement had run so high that the peasants had murdered several agents who refused their demands.
Mr. Parnell and his friends urged the people not to commit crimes, but to refuse to pay the rents demanded.
These leaders bade the people stop buying from, selling to, or working for any landlord who refused to listen to their demands, and to prevent others from having any dealings with them.
This is what is called "boycotting." Captain Boycott was its first victim. He not only refused to lower the rents, but, according to the story of the peasants, he reduced the wages of his laborers by a system of petty fines.
Acting on Mr. Parnell's advice, the laborers refused to work for him, and the tenants refused to have any dealings with him.
It was harvest-time, but the crops were left rotting in the fields, because no one would lend a hand to gather them. The farm servants left the farm, and there was no one to feed the cattle or milk the cows. The country people round would sell neither food, clothes, nor medicines to any of the family.
The peasants cut Captain Boycott off from the rest of the world, and kept him thus isolated until the Government had to interfere.
A gang of laborers was sent down, under the escort of a troop of soldiers, and gathered in the crops, and when the work was done, under the protection of the soldiers, the Captain and his family were taken from their home and safely guarded until they reached Dublin.
In describing this most extraordinary affair there was no word which properly applied to it, and so the word "boycotting" was coined, after the man who first suffered from the system, and in the new editions of the dictionaries "boycott" and "boycotting" appear as regular words of the English language.
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We may have an Arbitration Treaty with England after all.
President McKinley is in favor of an understanding between England and the United States, and it is said that a new treaty has been prepared.
Sir Julian Pauncefote has refused to take any steps in the matter until the United States has made a formal offer to his Government, but it is understood that he is as much in favor of the arrangement as the President.
The new treaty will differ in many respects from the one prepared by Mr. Olney. It will be expressly stated that all matters relating to the Nicaragua Canal and the Monroe Doctrine shall not be included as subjects for arbitration. (For Monroe Doctrine, see p. 210.)
It is intended to find out the feeling of the Senate toward the measure before the new treaty is signed. A second refusal to ratify might make bad feeling between the two countries.
It is not expected that the new treaty will be sent to the Senate before December.
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The terms of peace between Turkey and Greece have not yet been agreed upon, nor has the amount of money which Greece must pay been finally decided.
It is rumored that it will be about twenty-three million dollars, which is the largest sum that Greece is able to pay. It is also reported that Turkey is now willing to give up Thessaly without further trouble.
This may be true, but Turkey is posting guns on the mountains that mark the frontier between Greece and Turkey, and is despatching additional troops there.
An announcement has also been made that the Sultan has formed twenty more cavalry regiments, and has raised the number of soldiers to be recruited for the Turkish army to seven hundred thousand, which gives him an immense number of fighting men at his command.
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Little progress has been made with Cuban affairs, but they are still moving slowly forward.
The Liberal party in the Spanish Cortes has declared itself in favor of honest reforms in Cuba.
This party, which is led by Senor Sagasta, thinks that the reforms offered by Canovas, the Prime Minister, are not sufficient to pacify the insurgents. They think that a Commissioner should be sent out by Spain, to insure to the Cubans real home rule, and bring peace and prosperity back to the island.
The Liberals say that the first step in the direction of peace must be the recall of General Weyler, and that the horrors of his rule must be stopped at once.
Senor Comas, who had his ears boxed by the Duke of Tetuan, belongs to this Liberal party. His friends are still so incensed at this insult that they have issued a manifesto, refusing to have any relations with the Government so long as the Duke remains in power.
This disagreement in the Cortes is a very serious thing for Spain. At this moment, when there is so much dissatisfaction over the expenses of the Cuban war and constant fears of a Carlist rising are entertained, it is most necessary that the two parties should agree.
The fear of a Carlist rising is growing stronger. Only the other day a large store of rifles and ammunition was found in a house in Barcelona, one of the large cities of Spain. They had been stored there to be in readiness for the Carlists.
Don Carlos has announced that if he secures the throne of Spain, it is his intention to give home rule to Cuba; and the Spanish people are so tired of the war, and the taxes, poverty, and sorrow that it has brought with it, that this statement brought many friends to his cause.
General Woodford is known to have sympathized with the Cubans in their last struggle for liberty, and to have made some very severe speeches against Spain at that time.
The Madrid papers have mentioned this fact, and it is thought that the Queen Regent may object to his appointment.
In the mean while some strange plans have been offered as a solution of the difficulty.
From Washington comes a report that the Sugar Trust has offered to buy Cuba, and keep it as a vast sugar plantation.
Gomez is reported to have said that Cuba does not want the United States to go to war with Spain for her sake. All she asks is that she shall be granted belligerent rights, and be allowed to buy and ship her supplies without interference.
The Morgan Resolution (for granting these rights) has not yet passed the House.
Some of the Senators who are anxious that it shall be passed declare that they will force the House to consider it, by putting off action on the Tariff Bill until the Cuban Resolutions are brought before the House.
* * * * *
It seems that the Dauntless has met the usual fate of sinners.
She made a successful trip to Cuba after her release from custody, and, returning to this country, took on another forbidden cargo.
She escaped the cruiser Vesuvius by hiding herself among the Florida Keys, but fate overtook her; her boiler burst while she was off Indian Key, and she was easily captured by the cutter McLean.
This time she will probably not escape so easily.
* * * * *
When the President sent the Hawaiian Annexation Treaty to the Senate, he sent with it a message, giving reasons why the annexation of Hawaii seems advisable.
His message stated that the idea of joining the two countries together is no new one, that all our dealings with the Sandwich Islands for the past three-quarters of a century have been leading toward this point, and that for seventy years the government of the Hawaiian Islands has leaned on the friendship of the United States, and annexation would be only the natural outcome of the existing relations.
The Treaty has been published. It provides, in addition to the clauses regarding the debt and the public lands (about which we told you last week), that all existing treaties between Hawaii and foreign nations shall cease, and that no further immigration of Chinese shall be allowed to Hawaii, nor shall any of the Chinamen at present living in the Hawaiian Islands be allowed to visit the United States.
These two clauses are objected to by both the Chinese and the Japanese. China declares that if Hawaii is annexed it will become a part of the United States, and protests that Chinamen living in Hawaii shall therefore have the same right to come to the United States that they have to journey from one State to another.
Japan has entered a formal protest against the annexation.
She claims that she has perpetual treaty rights with Hawaii; that is to say, that her treaties can never be ended. She declares that the Annexation Treaty must not have any clause cancelling existing treaties with other nations. Such a clause would seriously damage her interests.
This protest from Japan comes in some degree from injured feelings.
Japan complains that throughout her disagreement with Hawaii she recognized the interests of the United States, and caused copies of all papers relating to the matter to be sent from her embassy to this Government.
Despite this courtesy on her part, she was kept in complete ignorance of the Annexation Treaty. When rumors of such an arrangement reached her minister, he went to the State Department to make inquiries, and claims that Mr. Sherman did not give satisfactory answers, but seemed purposely trying to keep Japan in ignorance of the true state of the case.
Mr. Sherman replied to this protest that there can be no such thing as a perpetual treaty.
According to his point of view, a treaty, no matter how strongly drawn, must end when one of the countries that made it ceases to be a nation any longer. Should the Senate ratify the treaty, Hawaii will become a part of the United States, her life as a nation will be at an end, and her treaties will cease with her.
Mr. Sherman reminds Japan of the treaty between Japan and the United States that will go into effect in 1899, and which will give her the same privileges she had with Hawaii. He adds that if she is not content to wait the two years till the United States treaty begins, arrangements can be made to cover the intervening period.
* * * * *
There is a good deal of gossip over the fact that Mr. Sherman put his signature to the Annexation Treaty.
From various speeches in the Senate, and from statements in his memoirs, it was believed that he was strongly opposed to the annexation of Hawaii. It is rumored, indeed, that Queen Liliuokalani based her strongest hopes of regaining her throne on the belief that the Secretary of State was opposed to the treaty and would use his influence to prevent its being ratified.
Mr. Sherman, however, states that while he was opposed to such a step at one time, the trouble between Hawaii and Japan has caused him to change his mind, and he now thinks annexation will be most desirable for all parties concerned.
The ex-Queen of the Sandwich Islands, Liliuokalani, has also sent in her protest against the Treaty. She objects because "her people," as she calls the Hawaiians, have not been consulted, and also because no provision has been made for her.
This protest has been filed in the State Department, and will be attended to in due course.
Notice of our intentions with regard to Hawaii has been sent to the various foreign powers, and so far no other protest has been received.
* * * * *
Christian Ross, the broken-hearted father of Charlie Ross, has just died in Philadelphia.
You are all probably familiar with the story of little Charlie Ross, who was stolen away from his home; but it seems well to tell it you again, for it may serve as a warning against making chance acquaintances in the street.
Charlie Ross and his brother Walter were playing in front of their home in Germantown, Pa., when two men drove by in a buggy. The men promised the boys a ride if they would walk up to the top of the hill on which the house stood.
The boys ran gladly up the hill, and then, when they were safely out of sight of the house, the two men took them up and drove off with them.
They gave them candy, and kept the boys happy and amused until they reached the town. Here they gave the older boy, Walter, a quarter to go and buy some more candy, and while he was in the store drove off with Charlie.
All this happened twenty-three years ago, but from that day to this Charlie Ross has never been found.
His father was frantic with grief, and a careful search was made for the child, but no traces of him could be found.
Some days after Charlie had been stolen, a letter was brought to his father, saying that the boy was being held for ransom, and would be returned to his father on the payment of twenty thousand dollars.
This money was raised, and would have been paid to the brigands, but that the police stepped in and insisted upon their right to manage the case.
Mr. Ross had been warned against allowing the police to interfere. The thieves had written to him that if he did so they would kill the boy.
The Mayor of Philadelphia offered the enormous reward of twenty thousand dollars for the recovery of the boy and the arrest of the persons who had stolen him. Notices of this were printed in every language, and sent all over the world; but though numbers of people were working to gain the great reward, Charlie Ross has never been found.
* * * * *
We told you last week of the new volcano which has appeared in Mexico.
The shocks have done a great deal of damage. The town of Tehuantepec has been completely destroyed, and the people are living in tents on the outskirts of the place.
Tremblings of the earth still continue to be felt along the Pacific Coast, and the people are terror-stricken.
One very severe shock was felt in San Francisco, but little damage resulted from it. Some of the California towns have, however, suffered severely.
Nature seems to be playing some strange tricks this year.
The French people have been treated to a cyclone.
They seemed to be really indignant over the visitation. They had always considered that cyclones were American institutions, and never expected that they would follow the example of American people and find their way to Paris.
This storm was a regular Westerner, sweeping down everything in its path, blowing houses over, and destroying things generally.
Having spent part of its rage in France, it rushed across the English Channel, raising such a gale there that many vessels were wrecked, both on the English and French shores.
The storm crossed England and reached the Irish Channel, where it again played havoc with the shipping. Admiral Lord Nelson's flag-ship, the Foudroyant, was anchored off Liverpool. It had been touring up and down the coast as a show-ship. The storm put an end to its journeyings forever. It was caught in the gale, driven ashore, and is now a total wreck.
If such storms are repeated, we shall have to tell our European cousins how they manage tornadoes and cyclones out West.
In the State of Kansas, tornadoes are more dreaded than fires, and the Kansas children are taught a tornado drill as our Eastern children are taught a fire drill.
According to the statements we receive, the citizens take to the prairies the moment a tornado strikes a Kansas town. As the children cannot run as fast as the grown-ups, they have often been caught and injured by the terrible storms before they could escape.
To prevent such accidents in the future, some one decided to build tornado caves under the schoolhouses. These caves are large enough to shelter all the children while the blow lasts, and the scholars are regularly drilled in the methods of reaching these caves quickly and in good order.
The teacher sounds the alarm, and instantly the pupils stand up, and to the music of their own singing march down the stairs and into the cave.
Then, let the tornado rage as it will, they are safe.
* * * * *
The tailors' strike is over, and has resulted in a victory for the strikers.
The contractors have signed the new agreement, and most of the tailors are now back at their work.
This victory means a great deal to the workers. Their period of labor will be reduced from fifteen hours a day to ten, and by the new scale of wages they will be able to earn from $10 to $18 a week, instead of from $5 to $10 as formerly.
The leader of the strike, Meyer Shoenfeld, has been working so hard in the interests of his fellow-laborers that he is quite ill. At one of the last meetings of the strikers he broke down in the midst of a speech he was making, and was unable to continue.
When he heard that the contractors were about to sign, he insisted on getting out of his sick-bed and going to the meeting, to make sure everything was being properly arranged.
The success of the strikers will cause a slight increase in the price of ready-made clothes, but few are likely to begrudge this when they realize what an increase of comfort it means to the poor workers.
* * * * *
Austria and Hungary are not getting along as well as they might.
There are two reasons for this unfriendly feeling.
One is that Austria has asked Hungary to pay a larger proportion of the common expenses of the two countries. It was arranged that Hungary should pay thirty per cent. of these expenses, and Austria the other seventy per cent., because Austria was much larger and wealthier than the sister land.
Since these arrangements were made Hungary has become exceedingly prosperous, and Austria now asks her to pay thirty-seven per cent. of the expenses instead of the former thirty per cent.
Hungary will not listen to any arguments on the subject, and threatens to separate herself from Austria.
These two countries are governed by one sovereign, and, like Sweden and Norway, or the various States of our own country, have each their own local government, but are united on all matters of foreign affairs, national defences, tariff, etc.
The Hungarians and Austrians are, however, people of very different races, and, in spite of the years they have been joined under one federal government, they have never grown to like each other.
The Hungarians are Magyars, and were originally of Asiatic origin. They are a fierce, fiery race. The Austrians come of the same stock as the Germans, and are of a much milder temperament.
Hungary is a conquered country. In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries it was a very great kingdom, but in the sixteenth century its power declined, and, the king having died, Turkey and Austria fought for the possession of the crown, Austria eventually gaining the day.
Ferdinand I., a prince of the Austrian House of Hapsburg, was declared King of Hungary, and ever since then the Emperor of Austria has been crowned King of Hungary.
The Hungarians have never felt satisfied with the Austrian rule, and have frequently revolted. The last rising was in 1848, under Louis Kossuth. This rebellion was put down with the help of the Russians.
Last June a great patriotic celebration took place in Hungary, and this possibly roused the national feeling so strongly in the hearts of the Hungarians that it has made them a little more restless than usual.
This celebration was called the Banderium, and was to celebrate the thousandth year of Hungary's existence as a kingdom.
The nobles of Hungary met together in Buda-Pesth, the capital city of the country, and went in procession to the Houses of Parliament, and swore allegiance to the battered golden crown which Pope Sylvester II. had given to the first King of Hungary, one thousand years before.
It was said to have been a most wonderful and stirring sight to see these nobles "dressed in the clothes their ancestors had worn, carrying the banners under which their grandfathers had fought, weeping with emotion around a battered golden crown," a relic of the days when their fatherland was great and powerful.
The description given by Mr. Richard Harding Davis in Scribner's Magazine for March, and from which we quote the above statement, gives a living picture of this grand festival. There can be little doubt that such an occasion must have roused the patriotism of these people to fever heat.
Whether this be true or not, it is certain that the Hungarians have been harder to manage, and that their dislike of the Austrians has been steadily gaining strength.
We spoke of a second cause of disagreement. It arises from a measure that was intended to conciliate the Hungarians.
This measure was an imperial edict, ordering that every official, in the districts where Hungarian is spoken, must be able to speak both the German and Hungarian language within five years.
This has given great offence to the German-speaking part of the population; they cannot see why they should be forced to learn Hungarian, and the Hungarians insist that no officials can properly govern a people unless they can speak their language.
These two questions have set Hungary and Austria at variance with each other, and it is feared that Hungary may not be satisfied until she has severed herself from Austria, and once more become an independent kingdom.
* * * * *
There is fresh news from the Greater Republic of Central America.
We told you on page 222 that Guatemala and Costa Rica would be glad to enter the federation, but could not do so without the full consent of their congresses.
Word has reached us that Guatemala has signed the treaty which makes her a part of the new Republic.
Costa Rica has not joined as yet. It seems that she has a little private feud on hand with Guatemala, and is not ready to make up her mind to join any federation that holds her enemy.
She declares that she is the most prosperous of the five countries of Central America, and that she has nothing to gain by the federation. She does not believe that the new republic will be a permanent affair, and does not wish to join it until she feels more sure that it will be.
To assure her of their good faith, the four other republics have offered to name President Iglesias of Costa Rica as the first President of the Diet which is to govern the republic. But Costa Rica still holds aloof from the combination.
The object of the federation was to bring about a more settled state of affairs, and arrange for the friendly adjustment of all disputes with foreign countries.
These five small republics, joined together with a common interest, should play a very important part in the affairs of Central America.
* * * * *
South American affairs are still in a state of turmoil, and Argentina has now been drawn into the quarrel.
It seems that the Argentine Republic is in sympathy with the rebels, and has sent filibustering expeditions of men and supplies to them.
The Uruguayan Government became extremely indignant at this, and endeavored to put a stop to such proceedings by invading Argentina. A force of soldiers was landed on the coast of Argentina, and a vessel flying the flag of that country was sunk by the guns of the Uruguayan cruiser.
Argentina immediately replied by sending one of her gunboats to the scene of action, and making preparations for war with Uruguay.
In the mean while the rebels have been gaining victories both in Brazil and Uruguay. The fanatics under Conselhiero (see page 741) have beaten back the Brazilian troops, and have recaptured Canudos. The Uruguayan rebels, on their part, have defeated the Government troops at Rivera, inflicting heavy loss on them.
* * * * *
There is a movement on foot to erect a monument to the memory of Harriet Beecher Stowe, the well-known authoress, who died on March 5, 1897, at the age of eighty-five.
Mrs. Stowe did much for the advancement of American letters. Before she wrote "Uncle Tom's Cabin," story-writing was in its infancy in America. It is hard for young people to realize how the times have changed with the coming of the many magazines and papers that we have to-day. Balzac, Thackeray, Dickens, Dumas, and Hawthorne were publishing their wonderful romances at the time Mrs. Stowe appeared as an authoress. She wrote many other stories during her long life, although her fame rests very largely upon the one book, "Uncle Tom's Cabin," of which many hundreds of thousands of copies have been sold.
GENIE H. ROSENFELD.
INVENTIONS AND DISCOVERIES.
PNEUMATIC TIRE.—It is hard upon bicyclists that the early summer season, when everything should be most favorable for cycling, is just the time chosen to mend the country roads.
Woe to the tires of the unwary cycler who comes suddenly upon such a mended road! There was one the other day, a lady, coming home hot and tired after a long run. She slackened her speed, gazed in despair at the wicked little sharp-pointed stones which lined her path for many yards to come, and finally, hot and tired as she was, she dismounted and carried her bicycle to a spot where the road was again worn to a comfortable smoothness.
All cyclists meet with the same experience, and it has set the clever heads among tire-makers thinking how the inconvenience can be remedied. There are several new kinds of tires suggested, and one seems to be quite a good idea. It is to be composed of a series of inflated balls, with an outer rim to protect them from the stones, nails, etc., which are the nightmare of the bicycle-rider. In this way, should an accident happen to one ball, the others need not be in any way injured, and the horror of a punctured tire would be greatly lessened.
SEWING-MACHINE THAT WILL CUT AND MAKE BUTTON-HOLES.—Here is an invention that will delight the girls.
Our sewing-machines do so much of the work for us nowadays that one quite resents the idea, after a garment is otherwise completed, of sitting patiently down to make button-holes, just as our grandmothers used to do, and their grandmothers before them. Some one has come to the help of busy workers with a machine that has a double action. It not only sews button-holes but cuts them. It is provided with an appliance which stops the sewing while the hole is being cut, and again stops the cutting movement to give place to the sewing.
This ought to be a great and successful invention.
SILK MADE FROM WOOD-FIBRE.—A new process of making silk has just been put on the market, and if it is as successful as is claimed for it, silk may soon be as cheap as cotton.
The secret was discovered by a Frenchman, but it was no accidental discovery—he only achieved his success after forty years of patient study.
This Frenchman, Count Hilaire de Cordonnet, had watched and studied the work of the silkworm, and had long thought that there ought to be some simpler process of spinning silk than the tedious and complicated method employed by the worms.
The Count had noticed the preference silkworms have for the leaves of the mulberry and osage-orange trees, and, after experimenting with these plants for some time, he decided that if he could reduce them to pulp and treat them in certain ways, the result would be silk-fibre. But the result was not altogether satisfactory. He found that something was wanting to make his silk like that the silkworm produced.
He studied their work again, and found that they covered the fibre with a kind of gum, which gave it gloss and strength.
After years of patient study he discovered the materials of which this gum was composed, and then made another trial to see whether he had not learned the secret at last.
By the aid of machines he tore the plants bit from bit, until they were reduced to pulp, just as the insect reduced the leaves in the process of eating and swallowing.
He then added the gum, and with the aid of more machinery spun out the threads of fibre, imitating the methods of the insect as closely as possible.
This time the experiment proved a great success. His fibre silk was as strong, as glossy, and as brilliant as the silkworm silk, and had one advantage over it, that when woven into breadths it did not crease so readily.
NEW CAR.—Here is a new form of street car which is interesting.
The closed cars and the open cars have heretofore been made on different patterns, and the companies have had to provide two kinds of cars, one for summer and one for winter. This new car is built with movable sides, which can be taken out with ease.
The car companies should welcome this invention, for, if it is as simple and practical as it seems, it will save them large sums of money.
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"The Great Round World" PRIZE CONTEST
THE GREAT ROUND WORLD is now over six months old, and it feels some anxiety to know just how much interest its readers have taken in the news and how much information they have gained from its pages. To ascertain this, it has been decided to offer ten prizes for the best answers to the following:
Name ten of the most important events that have been mentioned in "The Great Round World" in the first 30 numbers, that is, up to number of June 3d.
In mentioning these events give briefly reasons for considering them important.
This competition will be open to subscribers only, and any one desiring to enter the competition must send to this office their name and the date of their subscription; a number will then be given them.
All new subscribers will be furnished with a card entitling them to enter the competition.
In making the selection of important events, remember that wars and political events are not necessarily the most important. If, for instance, the air-ship had turned out to be a genuine and successful thing, it would have been most important as affecting the history of the world. Or if by chance the telephone or telegraph had been invented in this period, these inventions would have been important events.
Prizes will be awarded to those who make the best selection and who mention the events in the best order of their importance. Answers may be sent in any time before September 1st.
The Great Round World does not want you to hurry over this contest, but to take plenty of time and do the work carefully. It will be a pleasant occupation for the summer months.
We would advise you to take the magazines starting at No. 1, look them over carefully, keep a note-book at your side, and jot down in it the events that seem to you important; when you have finished them all, No. 1 to 30, look over your notes and select the ten events that seem to you to be the most important, stating after each event your reason for thinking it important.
For instance: suppose you decide that the death of Dr. Ruiz was one of these important events, you might say, "The killing of Dr. Ruiz in the prison of Guanabacoa—because it brought the cruelties practised on American citizens to the attention of our Government," etc., etc.
In sending your answers put your number and the date only on them, for the judges are not to know names and addresses of the contestants, that there may be no favoritism shown.
It is important to put date on, for if two or more are found of similar standing, the one first received will be given preference.
Address all letters to REVIEW PRIZE CONTEST DEPARTMENT, GREAT ROUND WORLD, 3 and 5 West 18th Street, New York City.
Write answer on one side of the paper only Prizes will be selections from the premium catalogue
No. 1. Premiums as given for 15 Subscriptions No. 2. " " " " 12 " No. 3. " " " " 10 " No. 4. " " " " 9 " No. 5. " " " " 8 " No. 6. " " " " 7 " No. 7. " " " " 5 " No. 8. " " " " 5 " No. 9. " " " " 5 " No. 10. " " " " 5 "
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are made of the strongest and best book-cover paper obtainable. This paper is made in large quantities especially for these book covers and will protect books perfectly. The book covers themselves are a marvel of ingenuity, and, although they are in one piece and can be adjusted to fit perfectly any sized book without cutting the paper, they are also so simple that any boy or girl can use them; as they are already gummed they are always ready for use.
A sample dozen will be mailed to any address for 20 cents (or ten two-cent stamps) if you write
WILLIAM BEVERLEY HARISON 3 and 5 West 18th Street, New York City
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A Good Agent Wanted In Every Town for "The Great Round World"
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In connection with our offer of any BICYCLE you wish for 100 new subscriptions, we have prepared a
This contains a list of selected articles which will be given to those who may obtain a smaller number of subscriptions
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Those who fail to secure the necessary number for the bicycle may make selection from this catalogue.
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Copy mailed on receipt of 5c.
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THE GREAT ROUND WORLD 3 & 5 West 18th St, New York City
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