"WISE WORDS. . A straight line is the shortest in mor als, as in mathematics. Silence is the wit of fools and one of the virtues of the wise. Every man's ability may be strength ened or increased by culture. Until the vine-leaves of youth are faded, .who knows their value of sweet ness? What are the best days in memory? Those in which we met a companion who "WW truly such. The State needs citizens, but she needs, above all. self-supporting citizens. And that system of education is most politic and most perfect which best meets and fulfils the higher requirement. . Wondrous, indeed, our human nature is. He has no right to think that he can enter hopefully on life who is not full of reverence before his own humanity; who does not deeply feel its wondrousness. Some favorable event raises your spirits, and you think good days are pre paring for you. Do not believe it. Noth ing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles. Making Ice in the Tropics. .In the tropical climate, far distant from high mountains, as neither natural snow nor ice can be obtained, recourse is had to the cold generated by evap oration and the comparative coolness of the air a little before daybreak to man ufacture ice in large quantities, and thus to supply a most grateful luxury at a moderate price. Ice is thus simply man ufactured in a largo way at Benares, Allahabad and Calcutta, in the East Indies, where natural ice has never been seen. On a large, open plain an excavation is made abmt thirty feet square and two feet deep, on the bottom of which sugar cane or maize stems are evenly strewed to the height of about eight inches. On this bed are set rows of small, shallow, unglazed earthen pans, so porous that when filled with water the outsides are immediately covered with a thick dew oozing through them. Toward the dusk of the evening, the pans, previously smeared with butter, are filled with soft water, generally boiled, and let remain there during the night. In the morning, before sunrise, the ice makers attend and collect from each pan a crust of ice, more or less thick, that ad heres to its inner side, and it is put into baskets and carried without loss of time to the common receptacle, which is a deep pit in a high, dry situation, lined first with straw and then with old blanketing, where it is beaten down and congeals into a solid mass. Tne crop of ice varies ex tremely, sometimes amounting to more than half the contents of the pan, at other times scarcely a pellicle. Clear and se rene weather is the most favorable for its production, whatever may be the sensible heat of the atmosphere. The cold gener ated by the rapid evaporation round every part of the pan is the cause of this con gelation. In this way ices are secured for the table, when the heat in the shade is very commonly above 100 degrees. A King of the Cowboys. An Ogalalla (Neb.) letter contains the following: The presiding genius of this town is Tucker, who runs a combination saloon and gambling-house. When any of the cowboys get hard up they go to see Tucker, lie gives his money liberal ly and freely to his friends. Tucker is a tall, fine-looking man, with an intelligen countenance, lie affects long hair, a la Buffalo Bill, and prides himself on his fighting abilities. If a drunken cowboy is disposed to have a shooting matinee or xough-and-tumble exercise he can always be accommodated by applying to Tucker, who guarantees to do up the anxious in dividual in short order. When any dis turber of the peace tries to invade the sa cred precincts of the Cowboy's Rest, as Tucker's saloon is affectionately called, the gentlemanly proprietor give3 him hia advice to either tight or have a drink. The festive and belligerent cowboy adore3 Tucker on account of his generosity and grit, and he would stand by this popular border gambler through thick and thin. Any other man than Tucker would be lia ble to have hia saloon completely demol ished two or three times a week, but he always remembers his friends; no hungry man was ever turned from his door, and the cowboys, who have had substantial evidences of his good-will, never forget the kindness. Tucker his many imita tors, but he is the typical border paradox of gentleman and ruffian, and no man can compete with him in shrewdness or pop ularity. Showers on Top. It is generally believed that the dis charge of artillery tends to dispel clouds and mists in the immediate neighbor hood. A French electrician combats this theory, and maintains that the effect of a series of sufficiently violent detona tions would bo to compel the clouds to discharge their moisture. He even goes so far as to say that it would be perfectly possible to produce a fall of rain in this way. He suggests a method by which he believes this often highly desirable re sult might be brought about. His plan is to send up one or more baloons freighted with panclastic or some other equally explosive compounds. They are to be connected with a battery on the ground by means of a fine wire, and when they attain the necessary altitude that is, when they enter the cloud-zone the spark is to be transmitted. The detona tion will follow, and a refreshing shower will be tne result. Farmers and others who suffer heavily from the effects of a prolonged drought will probably be anx ious that the French savant's system should be given a trial, no method hith erto devised for obtaining rain having proved quite efficacious. Bank Note Paper. The bank note paper on which Ameri can legal tender, national bank note currency and government bonds are printed is made entirely at Dalton, Mass. If you should happen to stop at the pa per mill, with proper introduction and credentials, you may perhaps be allowed to handle a sheet of crisp paper, where, as the wet, grayish pulp is pressed be tween heavy iron cylinders, bits of blue and red silk are scattered over its face and silken ribs laid on its service. You may go beyond into the counting room, where each sheet, as it comes from the drying room, is carefully examined, counted, and then returned to the paper cutter to be divided into smaller sheets. If you trace this paper still further, you will find that from the cutter's hands it passes again into the counting room, and is separated into packages containing 1,000 6heetseach, the amount recorded in a register and then packed in bundles and stored in fire and burglar proof vaults to await shipment to the United States Treasury. From the pulp room to the vault the precious paper is watched and cruarded as carefully as though each sheet were an ounce of gold. Its manufacture Is one of the greatest secrets connected with the government's money making. From the vaults of the paper mill at Dal ton to the guarded store rooms of the J treasury at vv asningion is a journey oi several hundred miles. In the capacious vaults of the treasury building among gold, silver, copper and nickle coins, bullion, paper currency and official records you will find thousands of pack ages of the bank note paper made at Dal ton. It comes in little iron safes, such as are used by the Adams Express com pany, and each package and every sheet is carefully counted before the manu facturer and express company are relieved of further responsibility. The paper that arrives to-day may lie in the treasury store room for years, or it may be sent to the bureau of engraving and printing to morrow, to return in the course of a month's time a legal tender or bank note. Fanny Little Ones. A father found his son playing on the front steps. "Edward," he sad, "what do I see? Are you not disobeying your grand mother, who just told you not to jump down these steps?" "No," said Edward, "no, indeed; grandma didn't tell us not to, papal She only came down to the door and said, 'I wouldn't jump down these steps, boys,' and I shouldn't think she would an old lady like herl" "Oh, mamma," said little Julia on her return one day from school, "I'm in the squeal to Germany 1" "The 6queal?" asked her puzzled mamma. "Yes, 'em, the squeal," said Julia, opening her geography to confirm hei assertion by pointing to a division in her text book, entitled "The Sequel to Ger many." "Arise with the lark, and with the lark to bed," read a little boy from hia First Reader; then he' stopped a mo moment and contemplated the picture of a lark at the head of the lesson. "Mamma," he said, "that lark's toe nails are so long I'd be afraid to go to bed with him." A little miss asked her father when he was writing a sermon: "Papa, does God tell you what to write in a sermon?" I After a little consideration the parent re i turned an affirmative answer, but he was completely nonplussed by the further question: "Then why do you scratch it out?" There was a great parade of soldiers, and little Mary, aged eight years, went to the door with her pet dog, Gyp, to see the procession move by. Like all little dogs. Gyp was saucy and began to bark. Mary ran upstairs to her mother, exclaiming: "Oh, mamma, come downstairs; I'm afraid Gyp will bite the army." A Horrible Catastrophe. Probably the most horrible catastrophe ever precipitated by an earthquake was that of Lisbon, on November 1, 1755. The inhabitants first experienced a slight rumbling, something like that heard j after the firing of heavy artillery. They started up in alarm all over the great city, but before many could reach the doors there came' a terrific shock that hurled the largest and strongest build ings to the ground, killing those in the street that had escaped the first shock. The effect of the disturbance was no ticed in a remarkable way on the water. Almost immediately the sea withdrew, leaving the large harbor dry; then in a wall of sixty or seventy feet it came rushing in with tremendous force. Comb ing and roaring it dashed upon the ruins and terrified crowds, and in a few mo ments over C0,000 bodies were carried out to sea or left lifeless among the rains. Many more were drowned in the lower part of the city, that had settled so that houses were covered permanently with over 600 feet of water. This earthquake was felt over the entire continent of Europe, and the tidal waves that it caused swept across the Atlantic in a few hours to the West Indies, occa sioning damage on those shores. Care ful calculation has shown that the area affected bv the disturbance, equaled 175, 000,000 cubic miles. M. Do Lesseps commends the French man for living on ceteals, eight pounds of which cost no more than one pound of the Englishman's roast beef, and for buy ing American cottonseed oil at three cents a pound, purifying it and selling it back to America as olive oil at $3 a gallon. SCIENTIFIC AND INDUSTRIAL Yellow pine, hard finished in oil, rivals In beauty any wood that grows, is as J j-eg(.jyg without considerable opposition, susceptible of as high a degree of polish, , A gha Qck Qf an eartnqake having and is almost as indestructible. Even j been xperienced iQ Massachusetts in hot grease will leave no stain upon it. 1755 th wag forthwitll attributed to The probability is that it will be more the evil influences of Franklin's light and more used for decorative purposes. - ningrod3. A Boston clergyman preach The supply of trees which yield gutta ed them .Q 1770 as uimpiou3Con. percha has not kept pace with their de- trivances to prevent the execution of the struction and some anxiety is felt upon th f hosT E , t 1826 tne suDjeci. mere a g'un umauu for the gum, as it is applied to an in creasing number of purposes, and the attention of the authorities is called to the matter. Urooklyn nas tne largest un-Dox iac-, tory in tne, country, a. leaiure is me manufacture of decorated tin-ware. This consists of, tin plate on whose surface there is a picture or other design. The work is done by a tin -lithographing press similar to that employed upon paper. The decorated ware costs but a trifle more than the plain, and is in great demand. An ingenious microscopist has bepn try ing to compute the amount of infusorial life inhabiting the bricks of old build ings long exposed to the weather. The principal forms he has discovered consist of large bacilli and vibrios, some of the latter being peculiarly marked by longi tudinal lines. He found myriads of these organisms in a single deep-seated micro scopic cavity, A leather dealer, who has been over looked the ihin-uo.savs that French and looked the thing up, says that French calfskin is better t'aan ours chiefly be cause of a better method of skinning the animals. "Here we use knives. In France they make a hole in the skin, insert the nose of a bellows and actually blow the skin from the flesh. Conse quently their skins never show a scratch and have no weak places. Of course, there is a good deal in the tanning, but not all." Professor Douglas, of the Michigan State University, it is said, produces amateur cyclones at will. He doe3 it by suspending a large copper plate by silken cords. This plate "is charged heavily with' electricity, which hangs down like a bag underneath, and is ren dered visible by the use of arsenious acid gas, which gives it a green color. The formation is a miniature cyclone, as per fect as any started in the clouds. It is funnel-shaped and whirls around rapidly. Passing this plate over a table, the five cent cyclone snatches up copper cents, pins, pith balls and other objects and scatters them on all sides. Water Power in America. The extraordinary development of water power for economic purposes is an American idea. In no other country has it been so extensively and so successfully utilized. This will be apparent by con sidering some of the rivers that have been dammed for the benefit of mankind, and the force which they furnished re duced to the standard of horse power: The Passaic ac Paterson, N. J., 1,000 horse power; the Merrimac at Lowell, 10,000, the Mohawk at Coaoes, 14,990; the Androscoggin at Lewiston, 11,000; the Housatonic at Canaan Falls, 3,000; the Mississippi at the Falls of St. An thony, 15,000; the Oswego st Oswego, 4,000. The sum total of these is 75,000 horse power, as estimated at a given point on each river. But this is used over again on an average of not less than three times. Thi3 would show a larger total of 225,000 horse-power. There are also very many smaller streams in all the hill sections of the country which are utilized and may funish, used and un used, power equal to the last-named total of 225,000; thus giving a grand total of 500,000 horse-power, distributed over a wide extent of country and supplying, in their way, the wants of CO, 000, 000 people. But thes3 are only the minor powers, so to speak, of the hills and valleys. The grand dominating power that could absorb them all and still have room to give hospitable refuge to four times as many remains to be noticed. It is the Niagara river. From data furnished by the United States Lake survey bureau in 1875, it appears that the average flow of the river above the falls is 10,000,000 cubic feet per minute. Converting this into horse-power under a head of 200 feet and we have a grand aggregate of 3,000,000 horse-power a mighty force that would supplv the economic wants of 200,000,000 of people. Industrial News. An Interesting Comparison. The fifteenth annual report of Colonel Carroll D. W right, the chief of the Mas sachusetts bureau of statistics of labor, contains interesting figures concerning working people and their wages in the Bay State and in Great Britain. In Mas sachusetts it appears that the average number of working dajs in a year is 309.29. In Massachusetts the working hours per week are 60.17, but in Great Britain only 53.50. For comparisons in a general way, the following table is given of the general average weekly wa ges paid to all employes in each of the industries compared. ureat Britain. $8 85 4 89 4 37 4 16 7 21 4 11 4 89 6 71 4 60 2 84 2 72 7 93 6 94 5 51 4 67 12 60 6 9U 7 40 5 52 Haas. Agricultural implements.. . . $10 25 Artisan's tools 11 83 Boots and shoes 1163 Brick 8 63 Building trades 14 99 CarpetiafcH 6 08 Carriage and wagons 13 80 Clothing 10 01 Cotton goods 645 Flax and jute goods 6 46 Food preparations 9 81 Furniture k 11 04 Glass 12 28 Hata fur, wool and silk.... 1101 Hosiery 6 49 Liquors malt and distilled. 12 87 Machines and machinery. . . Metals and metallic goods.. . Printing and publishing. . . . Printing, dyting, etc., cot ton textiles 11 75 11 25 11 37 8 67 4 94 8 5!i 5 67 4 86 3 &t Stons 14 39 Wooden goods. 12 19 Woolen goods 6 90 Worsted goods. 7 33 The Introduction of Lightning-Rods As a matter of course, the new dOC trina rvf "KVonlrlin onA Yiia nllipa wfta Tint an engineer in the employment of the British government recommended that all lightmng-iods should be removed from public buildings as dangerous ex pedients, and in 1838 the governor-gen- eral and council of tte East India com pany ordered that all lightning-rods should be removed from public build ings, arsenals and powder-magazines throughout India, and only became re conciled to their restoration after a large magazine and coming-house, not fur nished with a conductor, had been blown up during a storm. Franklin was so much in earnest in reference to his invention that he sent a friend at his own charge through the principal towns of the Mew England col onies to make known the powers and virtues of the lightning-rod. In the "Poor Richard" for 1758, a kind of al manac or manual which he was at that time publishing, he gave specific in structions for the erection of his rods. The second conductor which he himself ! " TCl LTh 7w constructed was placed upon the house of Mr. West, a wealthy merchant of Phil adelphia. A few months after this had been erected a storm burst over the town, and a flash of lightning was seen to strike the point of the conductor, and to spread itself out as a sheet of flame at its base. It was afterward found that about two inches and a half of the br&ss point had been dissipated into the air, and that im mediately beneath the metal was melted Into the form of an irregular blunt cap. The house, nevertheless, was quite un injured. The sheet of flame seen at the base of the conductor Franklin correctly ascribed to the ground having been very dry, and to there not having been a sufficiently capacious earth contact under thoso circumstances. He nevertheless Bhrewdly, and quite justifiably, assumed that in this case nature had itself pro nounced an unmistakable verdict in favoi of his invention. Popular Scienct Monthly. Three Heals a Day. An English writer gives some much needed advice as to the times and fre quency of meals. In his opinion the present usual practice of three meals a day has good reason, as well as custom, in its favor. When work of any kind is be.ng done, whether mental or bodily, the intervals between taking food should not be so long as to entail demands on the system when its store of material for the generation of force is exhausted. An ordinary full meal, in the case of a healthy man, is generally considered to have been completely digested and to have passed out of the stomach in four hours. A period of rest should then be granted to the stomach. Assuming that two hours are allowed for this, the in terval between one meal and another would be six hours; and this accords with the experience of most men. Dur ing rest and sleep there is less waste going on, and especially during sleep there is a greatly diminished activity of all the functions of the body. The in terval, therefore, between the last meal of one day and the first of the next may be longer, as it generally is, than be tween the several day meals. Assuming that breakfast be taken about 8 or 9 o'clock, there should be a mid-day meal about 1 or 2. The character of this must depend on the nature of the day's o. cupation and the convenience of the individual. With women and children this is generally then- hungry time, and the mid-day repast, whether called luncheon or dinner, is the chief meal. So it is with the middle and laboring classes, for the most part. But for mer chants, professional men and others, whose occupation take them from home all the day, this is inconvenient, and, moreover, it is not found conducive to health or comfort to take a full meal in the midst of a day's work. There can, however, be no doubt that much evil arises from attempting to go through the day without food, and then with ex- hausted powers sitting down to a hearty I meal. Something of a light, easily di gestible, but sustaining character should , be taken toward 1 or 2 o'clock. An Opium Joint at the Hub. An opium joint has been discovered in Boston. . It is managed by Ameri cans, and is much more luxurious than those run by Chinamen, although not eqaling in elaborate appointments the place in New York depicted so artisti tically in a recent paper in one of the magazines of that city. Men and women, some of comfortable social position, some long given to dissi pation, here inhale the drug on couches and divans, there being several general rooms, and one floor devoted to private chambers, where sometimes one women, sometimes two together, and occasional ly a man and women together, can in dulge this dreadful appetite without be ins seen by others. One young woman is" described who had quite lost her will power, and left her home for days together to smoke opium. The attendant said he did not see how the establishment could be interfered with; the authorities might shut it up as "a disorderly house" "but that wouldn't be very true, would it?" Venison was formerly so plenty in the San Francisco market that it sold for three to six cents per pound; now it costs from ten to fifteen. THE QUEEREST OF METALS. Interesting Facts About Platinum and Its Peculiarities. A party of gentlemen were discussing the subject of assaying and refining the piecious metals, says the New Yorkun, when Mr. D. W. Baker, of Newark, gave some interesting facts about platinum. "Our firm," he said, "practically does all the platinum business of this coun try, and the demand for the material is eo great that we never can get moro than we want of it. The principal por tion, or, in fact, nearly all of it, comes from the famous mine3 of the Demidoff family, who have the monopoly of the i production in Russia. It is all refined and made into sheets of various thick nesses, and into wire of certain commer-, cial sizes before it comes to us; but we have frequently to cut, roll and redraw it to new forms and sizes to meet the demands upon us. At one time it was coined in Russia, but it is no longer ap plied to that use. We have obtained some very good crude platinum ore from South America, and nave renned it suc cessfully, but the supply from that source is as yet very small. I am not aware that it has been found anywhere else than in Columbia, on that continent, but the explorations thus far made into the mineral resources of South America have been very meagre, and it is by no means improbable that platinum may yet be discovered there in quantities rivaling the supply of Russia. 1 "A popular error respecting platinum is that its intrinsic value is the same as that of gold. At one time It did approx imate to gold in value, but never "quite reached it, and is now worth only $8 to $12 an ounce, according to the work ex pended upon it in retting it into required forms and the amount of alloy it con tains. The alloy used for it is" iridium, which hardens it, and the more iridium it contains, the more difficult it is to . work, and, consequently, the more ex pensive. When pure, nlatinum is as soft as silver, but by the addition of iridium it becomes the hardest of metals, ine great diffiiculty of manipulating platinum is its excessive resistance to heat. A temperature that will make steel run like water and melt down fire-clay, has absolutely no effect upon it. You may put a piece of platinum no thicker than human hair into a blast furnace where Ingots of steel are melting down all around it and the bit of wire will come out as absolutely unchanged as if it had been in an ice box all the time. No means have actually been discovered for accurately determining the melting.tem perature of platinum, but it must be enormous. And yet, if you put a bit of lead into the crucible with the platinum, both metals will melt down together at the low temperature that fuses the lead, and if you try to melt lead in a platinum crucible you will find that as soon as the lead melts the platinum with which it comes in contact also melts and your crucible is destroyed. "A distinguishing characteristic of platinum is its extreme ductility. A wire can be made from it finer than from any other metal. I have a sample in my pocket, the guage of which is only one two thousandth of an inch, and it is practicable to make it thinner. It has even been affirmed that platinum wire has been made so fine as to be invisible to the naked eye, but that I do not state as of my own knowledge. This wire my son made." Mr. Baker exhibited the sample spoken of. It looked like a tress of silky hair, and had it not been shown upon a piece of black paper could hardly have been seen. He went on : "The draw plates, by means of which these fine wires are made, are sapphire and rubies. You may fancy for your selves how extremely delicate must be the work of making holes of such ex ceeding smallness to accurate guage.too, in those very hard stones. I get all mj draw plates from an old Swiss lady in New York, who makes them herself, to order. But, delicate as is the work of boring the holes, there is something still more delicate in the processes that pro duce such fine wire as this. That some thing is the filing of a long point on the wire to enable the poking' of the end of it through the draw plate so that it can be caught by the nippers. Imagine "yourself filing a long taper infr point on the end'of a wire only one-eighteen-hundredth of an inch in diame ter in 'order to get it through a draw plate that will bring it down to one-two-thousandth. My son does that without using a magnifying glass. I cannot say positively what uses this very thin wire i is put to. but something in surgery, I be lieve, either for fastening together por tions of bone or for operations. A newly invented instrument has been described to me, which, if it does what has been affirmed, is one of the greatest and most wonderful discoveries of modern sci ence. A very thin platinum wire loop, brought to incandescence by the current from a battery which, though of great power, is so small that it hangs from the lapel of the operator's coat is used, in stead of the knife, for excisions and cer tain amputations. It sears as . it cuts, ftrevents the loss of blood, and is abso utely painiess which is the most aston ishing thing about it. I am assured that a large tumor has been cut from a child while the operation was being performed, and that without any anaesthetic having been administered. "Our greatest consumers of platinum are the electricians, particularly the in candescent light companies. I supply the platinum wire for both the Edison and the Maxim companies, and the quantity they require so constantly increases that the demand threatens to exceed the sup ply of the metal. Sheets of platinum are bought by chemists, who have them converted into crucibles and other forms. Tea, says the Chinese, is a drink which relieves thirst and dissipates sorrow.