THE GREAT ROUND WORLD AND WHAT IS GOING ON IN IT
Vol. 1 AUGUST 19, 1897 No. 41. [Entered at Post Office, New York City, as second class matter]
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VOL. 1 AUGUST 19, 1897. NO. 41
The stories from the Klondike fields seem to grow more wonderful day by day.
The first accounts have not only been verified, but surpassed by the later news. Four million dollars' worth of gold is said to be waiting shipment at St. Michael's, Alaska, and miners at the Klondike say that fifty millions more will be taken out next season.
Men who went out poor a year ago are now returning with fortunes. Two miners found $10,000 worth of gold in twenty days.
One man who has just come back bringing $180,000 worth with him gave a reception at his hotel in San Francisco, and invited all who cared for the sight to come and see the nuggets he had brought.
It is said to have been the largest exhibit of gold since the famous times of '49. He had scores of nuggets as large as a man's thumb, but the feature of the collection was one about the shape and size of a full-grown potato. This nugget was said to be worth $250. Those who have seen the Alaska gold say it is very bright, and brassy in color, but not as fine in quality as the California gold.
The stories of these enormous fortunes have set the Californian and Northwestern towns in a fever of excitement. A tremendous rush is being made for the Klondike. Men are leaving good employment and hurrying off to the gold-fields. Professional men (lawyers and doctors), business men, merchants, clerks, and laborers are all joining in the mad rush for the land of gold.
The excitement is as great as it was in '49, but the terrible experiences of that year have now become ancient history, and the gold-seekers have to learn the sad lesson anew. It looks as if this land of gold would, like California in '49, become a land of death.
When the gold fever reached the Eastern States in the spring of '49, there was just the same mad rush for California that is now being made for the Klondike.
The emigrants had in those days to cross the prairies in wagons. None of them understood the rigors of the journey they had to undertake, and many fell by the wayside and died before the promised land was reached. After a while the track across this great American desert was marked by the skeletons of oxen and horses, and boxes and barrels which people had thrown out of their wagons to lighten the load of their poor weary beasts, to enable them to reach water and shade. Here and there a rough mound would mark where some poor soul had been unable to bear the sufferings and had given up his life.
Thousands died in the awful trip across the continent, and thousands more, who thought to make an easier journey by sea, died of fevers contracted in crossing the unhealthy Isthmus of Panama, the strip of land that divides North and South America, separating the Atlantic from the Pacific Ocean.
The historian Bancroft says that while between four and five hundred millions of gold were obtained in the seven years following the find in '49, the gold cost, in human life and labor, three times what it was actually worth.
A few of the Forty-niners gained the riches they sought, but the greater part of the gold-seekers barely made a living by the most exhausting toil.
As regards the Klondike, all the miners who have returned declare that the life is so hard that only the very healthy can stand it. In spite of this warning, weak and delicate men, and men who have lived in luxury all their lives, are setting their faces toward the north, to undertake a life of untiring labor and privation, in the intense cold of an Arctic region in winter, and the most extreme heat in the three short months of summer.
During this latter season the sun does not set till 10.30, and rises again at 3 A.M. There is no darkness, midnight being almost as light as midday. During the hot months all kinds of insects pester the inhabitants. The horseflies and mosquitoes swarm in such numbers that the rigors of winter are considered preferable to the warmth of summer.
In addition to the horrors of the climate, there is no real supply of food obtainable from the Klondike region. There is practically no farming done, and so no crops to amount to anything are raised. Practically all the food used at the gold-fields must be carried there by the miners, and the method of travel is such that it is impossible for one man to carry all the food he will need until the open season comes round again, and he can secure fresh provisions.
When the winter once sets in in the Klondike country the people are completely shut off from the rest of the world, the only way to reach civilization being by a long and exhausting journey on snowshoes over mountains and through fearful gorges, through which it would be impossible to carry baggage. The only communication with the outer world is through the mail, which reaches the district twice during the winter, the mail-carriers being mountaineers who understand how to travel these Arctic mountains over glaciers and snowy peaks.
The returning miners have all told the same story of the journey and the lack of provisions, but, in spite of this, crowds of men are hurrying into this country which is already on the verge of famine. Those who have taken food with them are unable to get it carried to its destination, and it is said that the road is now blocked with it. The only means of transportation is by Indians on mule-back; the mules are very scarce, and the Indians only work when they feel like it. The chances are that many men will be starving in the Klondike this winter, while barrels and boxes of food will be piled mountain-high at the last station, waiting to be carried through the long succession of waterways and portages. A portage is a place between lakes and rivers where the waters become so shallow or rapid that they cannot be navigated, and the boats have to be lifted ashore and carried overland until it is possible to take to the water again.
The word Klondike is said to be a mispronunciation of the Indian words "thron dak" or "duick," which means "plenty of fish," from the fact that the Klondike is a famous salmon stream. The river is marked "Tondak" on the Canadian maps.
In the Klondike district are a number of rivers flowing eastward from the Yukon. In all of these gold has been found. The Stewart River, which lies south of the Klondike, has been found to be as rich in gold as the Klondike, and it is confidently asserted that the Alaskan side of this region is as rich in gold as the British Columbian.
But, so far, all the gold-fields have been located in British Columbia, and the great rush for them has been from the United States.
The Canadians do not like this, and feel that it is not fair that Canada should be making nothing out of these fabulous finds.
There is very little redress for her, however. Americans have taken up the greater part of the claims in the Yukon district, and have been careful to comply with the very strict laws which Canada has laid down to govern mining claims. She can therefore make no objections on that score, but she is determined to get some share of the new riches.
At the present time the Americans are taking their goods into the new country free of duty, and are making what purchases they need in Alaskan towns.
Prominent men in Canada are demanding that custom officials shall be placed at all the Canadian mountain passes.
It is expected that the taxing of the Americans will produce a large income for the Government. One Canadian firm has offered $50,000 for the privilege of collecting the customs for ten years.
A cry has gone up that imposing duties on the miners will make their lot still harder than it is at present, but this will not be heeded. Men who start out expecting to make a large fortune in a few months ought to be willing to pay handsomely for the privilege.
Besides establishing custom-houses, the Canadian Government is seriously discussing the idea of making foreign miners pay a heavy royalty for the right to work in the mines.
There was some talk of excluding aliens—that is, all who are not British subjects—from working on the gold-fields, and thus keeping the Canadian find for Canadians.
You remember the Kootenai matter (see page 850), and how the Canadian Government made it impossible for aliens to take up claims, and insisted that all mine owners must give up their citizenship in other countries and become British subjects. There was some talk of doing the same thing at Klondike, but it was thought that such a course would make a great deal of trouble, and that it would be much simpler to force each man to pay a certain sum of money (fifty dollars a day has been suggested) for his right to work in the gold-fields.
It is strange how the search for gold brings envy, hatred, malice, and all uncharitableness in its train.
No sooner was gold discovered than Canada began to fret because America was profiting by it, and America began to fume because Canada wanted to make her profit out of the great find.
Ugly threats were made of what the American miners would do if Canada tried to make things hard for them. In consequence the Secretary of War has been asked to establish a military post on the route to the gold-fields in Alaska, to protect the American miners if Canada interferes unreasonably with them.
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This seems to be a great year for the finding of gold.
A discovery has just been made in Trinity County, Cal., which leads people to hope that the mother lode of the Californian gold-fields has been found.
This main lode had been lost sight of north of El Dorado County, but its reappearance in Trinity has caused a great deal of excitement and turned many gold-seekers thither, in preference to the frozen Klondike region. The first discovery of gold in California was made in what is now El Dorado County, and it was in consequence of the gold find that the county got its name.
El Dorado was the name of a mythical king, about whom the most astonishing stories were told. He was supposed to be lord of a country where gold was as plentiful as dust. It was in search of these golden lands that many of the famous discoverers undertook their voyages.
The conquest and settlement of New Granada (now the Republic of Colombia), the discovery of the Amazon and Orinoco rivers, of the great forests of the Andes, and of the mountainous regions of Venezuela, were all due to the quest for El Dorado.
This king, according to the tradition, dwelt in a city called Manoa, built on a lake called Parima. This city was supposed to be somewhere in the northern part of South America, and it was confidently asserted that its streets were paved with gold.
As the story has it, the wealth of this country was so great that the people wore gold for clothes, it being their custom to smear their bodies with oil of balsam, and then sprinkle themselves with gold-dust, till they looked like gilded statues.
To the people of the Old World it seemed that a country which could afford to dress its inhabitants in this fashion must be well worth finding, and so the old navigators were always trying to find it.
Of course they never did, but the source of the legend of El Dorado has been traced to the yearly ceremony of an Indian tribe near Bogota, in the Republic of Colombia.
The Spaniards declared that it was part of the religious duty of this tribe to have their chief bathed once a year in a certain lake which was sacred to them.
Great preparations were made for this ceremony. The body of the chief was first smeared with gold-dust and oil of balsam, and, a handful of gold and precious stones was given to him. He then advanced to the shores of the lake, and amid the prayers and chants of his tribe, first cast the gold and jewels into the water, and then plunged in himself.
This ceremony was supposed to bring his people good luck for the coming year.
The Spaniards who conquered New Granada, or the Republic of Colombia, declared this story to be strictly true, but as none of them had ever witnessed the ceremony, it is supposed to be merely another form of the El Dorado legend.
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In British India there is a fresh uprising which appears to be of a very serious character.
A body of tribesmen attacked a camp in the Chitral District, killing some of the British soldiers, and severely wounding others.
Chitral is on the northeast border of India, where it joins Afghanistan.
The tribes in this portion of the Empire have always given the English a great deal of trouble. They are very bold, and good fighters.
The country they inhabit is very mountainous, and they have one mode of warfare which makes them a very ugly foe to attack. They throw down rocks on an invading force, and long practice has made them so expert in this art that they are most formidable. When once they have taken to their mountain fastnesses, soldiers do not like the task of pursuing and punishing them.
The present outbreak was totally unexpected. The Swats, as the people of this region are called, appeared to be perfectly contented under British rule. Industry had been encouraged among them, trade developed, and they seemed a very peaceful and prosperous people.
Suddenly, without any warning, the whole population rose against the British.
The Swats had intended to attack Camp Malakand unawares, and massacre the soldiers, but through the kindness of a friendly native a warning was given. Preparations were quickly made for defence, messengers sent off to ask for re-enforcements, and the soldiers were able to repulse the enemy when the attack was made.
Six thousand Swats were said to be in arms against the British.
The Government at once despatched a large force of soldiers to relieve the little camp.
On their arrival the enemy was soon routed, the cavalry chasing them back toward the hills. All danger was supposed to be over, when word was brought that the natives had re-formed, and were preparing to attack a fort in the neighborhood, called Fort Chakdara.
Leaving a few men at the camp to defend it, the commander of the relief column started for Chakdara.
They arrived only just in time. The Swats had laid siege to the fort, and the little garrison in it were despairing, when, from the hills, they saw the lights flashed by a heliograph, and learned by this means that help was coming. The heliograph is an instrument for signalling by means of flashes of light reflected from mirrors.
When the relief party reached Chakdara, they had a severe fight with the Swats, but they at length routed the tribesmen.
The situation is growing more serious.
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News has just arrived that Great Britain has taken possession of one of the smaller islands in the Pacific Ocean, which is claimed by the Hawaiian Government.
This island is known as Palmyra Island, and is situated about a thousand miles to the southward of Hawaii. The Hawaiian Government claims that it is one of the dependencies of the Sandwich Island group.
It was discovered by Captain Cook, the famous navigator who explored the Pacific Ocean in 1768, and secured Australia and New Zealand for the British.
It has long been marked on the maps as a British possession, but it appears that it was occupied years ago by Hawaiians, who raised the Hawaiian flag over it, and claimed it for their Government.
The action of Great Britain in claiming the island at this time is considered of the highest importance, as it is feared that it may have been claimed merely for the sake of complicating Hawaiian matters, and preventing annexation.
Our Government will look very closely into the rights of the affair, and insist upon their being respected.
The State Department will gather all information possible in regard to Palmyra Island. Should it be found that Hawaii's claims are good, our minister in the Sandwich Islands will be instructed to ask the Government there to protest against the action of Great Britain. The United States will then uphold this protest, and the officials believe that it will result in the removal of the British flag from the island.
An American guano company located on Palmyra Island some years ago, building sheds and a wharf, but after the guano deposit was exhausted they abandoned the island. It was at one time known as Americus Island.
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A despatch from Japan says that the Government has decided to submit the Hawaiian emigrant question to arbitration.
It is also stated that Japan will endeavor to prevent the annexation by every means in her power, but that she will not resort to hostile measures.
The friends of arbitration are very pleased at the news about the Japanese emigrant question.
Arbitration seems to have been making rapid strides lately. Every one is satisfied with the settlement of the Venezuelan difficulties, and now Spain and Peru have entered upon a new treaty based upon similar grounds.
In this last treaty all differences are to be laid before a disinterested country for settlement, and the decision of that country is to be final.
There is a curious clause in this treaty which relates to the frequent revolutions which occur in the South American republics.
This clause states that the claims of Spanish residents for damage done their property during these disturbances shall be placed on the same footing as those of the Peruvians. Formerly there were diplomatic squabbles and troubles like the Ruiz affair, after every revolution, but under the new treaty all this will be avoided.
There are still rumors of a new arbitration treaty between England and the United States. It is probable that the question may be raised again at the next session of Congress.
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Affairs are progressing peacefully in Turkey.
The ambassadors have presented the Sultan with a rough draft of the treaty. It provides that Europe shall arbitrate any difficulties that may arise between Turkey and Greece over the details of the arrangement.
So far the ambassadors and Turkish officials are on the best of terms, and meet with the utmost friendliness.
But despite this fact, the peace is not yet concluded.
Germany has made a fresh difficulty by insisting that the Powers shall control the money matters of Greece until the war indemnity has been paid.
The Sultan has persisted in his refusal to give up Thessaly until this money has been paid, and to meet this objection the German Kaiser proposes to take charge of Greece's pocketbook and see that she settles her debts.
Greece has something to say on this subject, however. Her ministers will not hear of any such arrangement, and it was rumored that King George would abdicate if Germany's plan was carried out.
In addition to this, there is a likelihood of fresh trouble in Crete.
Turkey has been trying to send fresh troops to the island to re-enforce her present army. The admirals of the allied fleets have sternly objected to any such proceeding, and, learning that the Turkish troops are on their way, have refused to allow them to land, threatening to use force to prevent them, if necessary.
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It is now openly stated in Havana that General Weyler is to leave Cuba as soon as it has been definitely settled what leader is to take his place.
Having failed in all his attempts to pacify the island, General Weyler was seized with a great idea the other day. He decided to meet Gomez and discuss the making of peace on the terms of Home Rule for Cuba.
General Weyler has frequently tried to obtain an interview with Gomez, but has not been successful. Since the killing of Maceo the Cuban leaders have been very careful how they trusted themselves in the hands of their treacherous foe.
On this occasion General Weyler sent his messenger to Gomez, with a very polite request.
Gomez, however, wasted neither time nor politeness over his reply.
"Tell your general," he said to the messenger, "that I do not consider him a man of honor, and that he has lowered himself too deeply to be on a level where he can confer with me."
The insurgents are in great numbers around Havana, and are making constant attacks on the suburbs of that city.
Their force is now so strong that no one can leave the city by land, and no provisions can be brought into it.
It was decided that an army should be led against the besiegers, and General Weyler (having been commanded to do so from Madrid) decided to lead this army himself.
He found himself so hemmed in by insurgents that he was unable to leave the city except by boat, as all the roads are now in the hands of the Cubans.
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The results of the military bicycle trial on Long Island were most satisfactory.
The company started out with thirty-two men, and arrived home with twenty-eight, three having been sent back on business, the fourth man being the only one whose wheel was too badly damaged to be ridden.
The company travelled three hundred and ninety-eight out of the five hundred miles planned. The rest of the distance could not be made on account of the dreadful weather.
It rained every day of the trip, and the soldiers had to contend with muddy roads from start to finish.
In spite of these drawbacks the expedition was a complete success, and it is said that it will prove of the greatest value from a military standpoint.
The bicycle ambulance had to be abandoned on the second day out, as it was unsuited to the heavy roads over which the troop had to travel.
The accidents to the wheels were: ten rims broken, seven tires punctured, twenty spokes, two bearings, a handle-bar, and a pedal broken.
Happily there were two bicycle machinists in the party and they were able to make the necessary repairs, so that all the wheels were usable throughout the entire trip except one, which was so badly broken that the rider had to leave the company.
Captain Lyon, who was in command, says that it has been shown that the bicycle can be of great service in military operations. He says that under the very worst conditions a wheel can accomplish much more than a horse.
He thinks that the weight carried on the machine has very little to do with its endurance, but at the same time in future trips would recommend that a carbine be carried instead of the musket, which he considers too heavy and cumbersome to carry on a wheel.
An effort was made to send a despatch by one of the troopers from Jamaica, L.I., to the camp at Peekskill in seven hours, a distance of one hundred miles.
Private Walter Dixon was chosen for the service and started out at seven o'clock in the morning.
He did not reach the State camp till six in the evening, owing to mishaps. He was thrown from his wheel and stunned during his journey, and lost a long time while recovering. His actual time in the saddle was eight hours.
This was considered the most important event of the trip.
In war time the carrying of despatches is one of the most essential duties, and much depends on the promptness of their delivery. To be able to send a despatch a hundred miles in eight hours means a revolution in modern warfare.
The weather and the mosquitoes combined in an effort to make the trip as difficult as possible. When the men arrived in New York they were tired, grimy, mud-stained, and punctured with mosquito bites, but very happy over the success they had had.
They never once sought shelter in hotels, but, rain or no rain, camped out as they had intended to.
Another trial of the bicycle has been made in the West, and it has again come off with flying colors.
The Twenty-Fifth United States Infantry Bicycle Corps has just completed a two-thousand-mile ride from Fort Missoula, Montana, to St. Louis. The trip took forty days.
The riders and wheels stood the journey remarkably well, and the lieutenant in command considered the trip a great success.
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The constant rain that we have had for the last few weeks has called to mind a very curious old superstition which will amuse and interest you.
There is an ancient English rhyme which runs:
"St. Swithin's Day, if then doth rain, For forty days it will remain; St. Swithin's Day, if then be fair, For forty days 'twill rain nae mair!"
The history of the origin of this legend has been handed down to us through the chronicles of William of Malmesbury.
In the early days, before printing was invented, the records were kept by the monks in the monasteries.
The monks were, indeed, the only people who understood how to read and write.
The records were written by them on parchment or vellum. The margin of every sheet was very wide, and beautiful designs were often painted thereon The first letter of a new paragraph was always beautifully illuminated, as this method of decoration was called.
These ancient manuscripts have afforded us much of our knowledge of the world's history.
William of Malmesbury, to whose patient care we are indebted for the story of St. Swithin, was a monk in the monastery of Malmesbury, a town in England, about fifty miles from Stratford-on-Avon where Shakespeare was born. It is situated on the Lower Avon, a branch of the same river which flows through Stratford.
William was librarian of the monastery of Malmesbury, and was also a noted historian. He was born in 1095, and died in 1142.
His "History of the English Kings" and "Modern History" have formed the foundation of the later histories of England that have been written.
William also wrote several other books telling the history of his church, and it is in one of these that the story of St. Swithin is found.
In those days the people were very superstitious, and believed in signs and wonders, and frightened themselves silly with every strange noise or unusual occurrence, for everything that occurred was supposed to be a sign that something was going to happen.
According to the record of William of Malmesbury, Swithin was a great scholar in his day, and was chosen by King Ethelwulf as the tutor of his son Alfred. This was the Alfred who afterward became Alfred the Great. He was the king who was scolded by the old woman for burning the cakes.
When Alfred came to the throne he made his old tutor bishop of Winchester, and Swithin became a very great man indeed.
In spite of his greatness he was a very modest man, and did not care for pomp or show.
When he died he left strict instructions to the monks of Winchester, that he was to be buried in a "vile and unworthy place," outside the monastery.
The monks obeyed his wishes.
The fame and piety of this good man lived after him, and when many years had passed, and the memory of his dying wishes had grown fainter, the monks determined to adopt the good Swithin as their patron saint, and give him a magnificent resting-place inside the cathedral.
Some of the older monks protested, but their objections were overruled, and a day was set apart for transferring the good man's bones to their new resting-place.
According to William of Malmesbury this act was performed on July 15th, and St. Swithin's bones were no sooner lifted from their humble resting-place than the most awful storm of rain that England had ever known burst over the country. For forty days it rained without ceasing, until another flood was feared.
The monks were terribly frightened, and expressed great sorrow for the mischief they had done, but they did not give up their prize. The bones of St. Swithin were kept in Winchester Cathedral, rain or no rain.
Ever since then, according to the same chronicler, if it rained on the 15th of July, or St. Swithin's day, it was sure to rain every day for forty days.
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A new postal regulation has just come into use.
It is at present only in force in thirty-six of our principal cities, but if found to be as satisfactory as it is expected to be, will be used all over the country where there is a free delivery of mail.
This new plan provides for a house-to-house collection, as well as delivery of mail, and also for the sale of stamps by letter-carriers.
This is accomplished through the use of a combination letter-box, with which each householder is supposed to supply himself.
The box is to be placed where the postman can easily have access to it without whistling or ringing bells. Instead he will unlock the mail-box, take from it all the letters that want mailing, and put in their place those which he has to deliver.
It will be a very pleasant thing to be able to post letters without going off our own doorsteps, but this is only half of the comfort which the new box is going to be to us.
In each post-box will be a special envelope containing blanks, on which the householder can order one and two cent stamps and postal-cards, putting the money to pay for them into the envelope with his order.
The postman collects this envelope with the regular mail, and hands it to a special clerk, who takes out the money, fills the order, and drops the envelope in the mail for the postman to deliver on his next round.
Unstamped letters can also be posted in this very delightful box, and special delivery stamps can be secured by stating on the blank the number of letters that are to be stamped, and enclosing the money for the same in the special envelope.
All unstamped matter is turned over to the clerk who has charge of the envelope department. He buys the stamps, sticks them on, and despatches the letters.
This service is only rendered to people who buy their own boxes.
The post-office does not undertake to furnish them, but only to give good service with them when they are purchased.
* * * * *
A wonderful feat of swimming has just been performed in England.
A man named McNally, a champion swimmer, and a native of Boston, Mass., has attempted to swim across the English Channel from Dover, England, to Calais, France, a distance of thirty-five miles.
This body of water is the most uncertain and the roughest of seas.
Many people who are fine sailors and have made many voyages to Europe say they would rather cross the Atlantic than the English Channel.
The reason for this is that the vast body of water which forms the North Sea, in forcing its way between the narrow straits of Dover, is driven into short cross-waves and currents, which make the sea always choppy and rough.
Many swimmers have made the attempt to swim this Channel before, among them Boyton, and Captain Webb who lost his life in an attempt to swim the Niagara Rapids.
No one has so far achieved success.
McNally succeeded in reaching within three miles of the French coast, but he was then so exhausted that he had to be pulled into the boat and give up the attempt.
He had announced that he would swim the Channel, and had been some days in Dover, swimming over a part of the course, and getting himself in training for the final effort.
He started from the Dover pier, followed by a row-boat in which were two sailors, a newspaper man, and his trainer.
When he started out he had no intention of taking the swim. He merely went out for exercise. The weather was so foggy that his companions urged him to turn back and exercise later in the day.
He, however, kept on, and when he was about six miles from the shore the fog lifted, and wind and tide all being in his favor, he determined to make the trial then and there.
He was in the water fifteen and a half hours, and swam steadily all the time at the rate of about a mile and a half an hour.
Swimmers will be interested to know that McNally used the breast stroke continually, only occasionally changing to a side stroke for relief.
He never swam on his back. He says that this method of swimming interferes with the muscles, and gets them out of condition for resuming the breast stroke.
Swimmers as a rule seek rest and relief by turning on their backs, so the opinion of an expert on such a subject is well worth having.
Apart from the interest we all feel in great feats of strength and endurance, such an attempt as that made by McNally is valuable to us, as it shows us the length of time it is possible for a swimmer to remain in the water without becoming exhausted.
Swimming is an accomplishment that every boy and girl should acquire, and the knowledge that if a swimmer keeps cool, and has his wits about him, he can remain in the water for a considerable period without danger of drowning, should be taken to heart by every lad and lass who contemplates boating as a part of the summer's enjoyment.
INVENTION AND DISCOVERY
FRUIT-PICKER.—Fruit-picking is such an easy matter for boys that I think it is the girls who will chiefly appreciate this contrivance. It too often happens that there will be a very tall tree with fruit well out of reach, and a girl at the foot of it who is not an expert climber. Her mouth need no longer water in vain. This fruit-picker is very ingenious. It consists of scoop-shaped jaws worked by cords and springs, and mounted on a pole of suitable length. Attached to the jaws is a long, funnel-shaped bag, which receives the fruit and allows it to drop without injury right into the fruit-picker's hands.
SAFETY-BRAKE FOR CHILDREN'S CARRIAGES.—So many accidents occur with baby-carriages that this ought to be a great comfort to mothers, and a great help to the "little mothers" who mind the babies. Children's carriages are made so light that their weight is very slight, and a puff of wind is often enough to set them in motion; and if they chance to be on an uneven sidewalk they are likely to roll into the road among the vehicles. This simple brake, which keeps the wheels from moving when the handle is released, will render this impossible, and make it safe to leave the carriage, baby and all, without the fear of harm coming to it.
It seems as if the danger to the children attracted the attention of more than one person at the same time, for other brakes also have been brought to our notice, the same in intention, but differing in design.
GARMENT HANGER AND STRETCHER.—This is a very simple and ingenious arrangement to combine a garment hanger and stretcher. The two are made in one, and consist of a single piece of wire bent backward on itself. The ends are secured to a support which can be attached to the wall, and at the other end of the double wire it is bent upward and downward, so as to form a strong spring holding the two parallel parts closely together.
COMBINATION ERASER.—The combination eraser is a handy little tool, and seems calculated to find its way to every writing-table. As its name implies, we find combined in the one tool an eraser, a blade, and a smoothing-tip fitted in the stem of the blade. Besides this, a brush can be at will secured to an extension of the tip, thus bringing together all the implements necessary for erasing.
CORN-HOLDER.—Corn is never so sweet as when it is eaten off the cob, and in spite of burned and greasy fingers too, most people prefer to enjoy it in that way. This corn-holder will enable one to so enjoy it without any such drawbacks. It consists of a pair of lever-arms which work like scissors or shears. One end of each curves inwardly and has a pointed end which will enter the corn. There is a chain below which will keep them fixed in the necessary position for firmly holding it.
MR. WILLIAM B. HARISON.
DEAR SIR: Pardon me for calling your attention to an error in your valuable paper, THE GREAT ROUND WORLD, which has many friends here. On page 1,036 you speak of the steamer Pewabic on Lake Michigan. This should read Lake Huron. The wreck lays about twenty miles from Alpena. Some of the readers thought this should be corrected. Hence I take the liberty of this letter.
Wishing you best success for the paper, I remain
Yours truly, H.H. WITTELSHOFER. ALPENA, MICH., July 19th, 1897.
We acknowledge the receipt of your letter, with many thanks, and are much obliged to you for calling our attention to the matter. EDITOR.
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