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Assisted by the Committee on Publications of the Franklin Institute. 


Fur Mechanical and Physical Sciences. 







For Mining and Metallurgy. 



For Engineering and Architecture. 







T. U. WALTER, Arch. 
For Manufactures and Commerce. 





Reporter of American Patents, 

C. M. KELLER, late Examiner, Patent Office, Washington. 


Vol. XXI. 












JANUARY, 1§51, 


Extracts from the Fifth Annual Report of the Superintendent of the Ver- 
mont Central Railroad Company, October 31s£, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — As anticipated in my last annual Report, the road was 
opened into the town of Burlington in all the year 1849. Regular 
passenger and freight trains commenced running to Middlesex on the 30th 
day of August, distance 84 miles from Windsor; to Waterbury on the 29th 
day of September, distance 89 miles; and to Burlington on the 31st day of 
Dec<*mber, distance 115 miles. 

The track has been extended during the present month to the wharf on 
Lake Champlain at Burlington, making the total length of the road 117 
miles, from the north end of the Sullivan Railroad Bridge over Connecticut 
River in Windsor, to Lake Champlain at Burlington, including the branch 
of one and a half miles in length into Montpeiier. 

A large portion of the track was either laid at final grade, or has since 
been raised to grade. About 30 miles of track yet requires raising from 
six inches to one foot, and 10 miles fro.-n one to two feet, to bring it to 
final grade. When this is done, the track throughout the whole length of 
the road will be in perfect running order. The material used for grading 
is of a superior quality. At a few prints, however, it is rather too fine, but 
may hereafter be coated over with a coarser material at a moderate expense 
if deemed advisable, (and I think it will be,) to prevent the dust from 
arising in dry weather, while the trains are passing. Most of the track, yet 
requiring to be raised to grade, lies between Montpeiier and Burlington, 
and was laid in mid-winter, when the ground was frozen so hard and deep 
as to prevent its being laid at grade. Besides this, the time set for opening 

Vot. XXI.— Third Series.— No. 1.— January, 1851. 1 

2 Civil Engineeiing. 

the road to Burlington was so limited that it could not have all been graded 
up, had the weather permitted. 

All the track might have been raised and surfaced off at final grade 
previous to this time, had the company have had a sufficient number of 
engines and gravel cars for that purpose. It has frequently occurred 
during the past year, that not more than one gravel train could be used at 
a time for want of motive power, when it required at least four constantly 
in use to have finished the grading as it might and should have been done. 
The embankments generally, where they are or may hereafter be exposed 
to the action of the water in the rivers during high freshets, have been 
protected with riprapping of stone taken from the rock excavations on the 

All the river turnings have stood the test of the spring and summer fresh- 
ets remarkably well, except the one in Middlesex, and the one in Water- 
bury, neither of which were finished at the time of the great freshet on the 
19th of July last, which caused such great destruction of property through- 
out the country. 

The damage sustained on these two points was not so great as at first 
anticipated. Including these, the damage done to the whole road, by the 
three high freshets which have occurred since the middle of July last, will 
not exceed $35,000. 

A thorough examination of all the points affected by the freshet of July 
19th, and an estimate of the probable cost of repairing the same, was made 
immediately after the freshet, which amounted to a fraction less than 

The repairs of damages have since progressed with as great rapidity as 
the means within the possession of the Company would allow. Most of 
them have already been completed, and the remainder will be finished in 
all the next month. 

No doubt is entertained of the future stability of the road, when the 
repairs are completed, and the new channel, cut for turning Winooski 
river in Middlesex, is made of a sufficient width, and the embankments 
and masonry, at that and other exposed points, properly secured by rip- 

The wooden superstructure of the bridges, built under the contract with 
S. F. Belknap, deceased, (which did not include covering,) are being 
covered by the Company, lo protect them from the weather. Most of them 
are now finished, and the remainder of them will be done during the pre- 
sent season. 

A number of the excavations, on the Burlington end of the road require 
sloping and ditching, especially the deep cut in the town of Burlington, 
which was left by the contractors as soon as a space of sufficient width to 
lay the track was made. The earth to be taken from these excavations is 
required upon the embankments to bring them to their proper w T idth and 

At six different points the track was temporarily laid around and over 
rock excavations, to facilitate the early opening of the road to Burlington. 
The passenger and freight trains passed regularly over these points from 
the opening of the road until August last, when the whole were completed, 
and the track permanently laid. By this means the road was opened to 

Annual Report of the Vermont Central Railroad. 3 

Burlington from four to six months earlier than it otherwise could have 

Two regular passenger trains, and one freight, have been running most 
of the time during the year ending June 30th; also from one to three gravel 
trains, and an occasional train for hauling and distributing materials for the 
construction of the road, and for wood. 

Depot Buildings of a uniform size and finish have been erected at most 
of the stations on the road; also water houses, wood sheds, &c. 

On the 30th of June last the Company had upon the road twelve loco- 
motive steam engines of the first class, and three of a small size, second 
hand;* ten eight-wheel passenger cars, two eight- wheel postoffice, express, 
and baggage cars, one eight- wheel baggage car, (since altered to postoffice 
and express,) ninety-three eight-wheel merchandize box cars, twenty-nine 
eight- wheel platform stake cars, eighty-eight four-wheel gravel cars, four- 
teen second hand gravel cars, four four-wheel iron cars, fifteen handcars, 
one large snow plough, six small snow T ploughs, and twelve cow catchers.! 

In my last annual report I stated that, "It has been thought to be economi- 
cal and advisable to undertake the building of a limited number of baggage 
and freight cars at the repair shops in Northfield." 

Materials were partially purchased for the construction of two postoffice, 
express, and baggage cars, and for twenty-five eight-wheel merchandize 
box cars. One of the postoffice, express, and baggage cars, and three of 
the merchandize cars, were completed and put upon the road previous 
to the 30th of June last, at a cost less than the price paid by the Company 
to other car builders for cars of like description. Since that time seven 
merchandize box cars, and one postoffice, express, and baggage car, have 
been built and placed upon the road, and ten more will soon be completed. 
Six hand cars were also built by the Company and used upon the road prior 
to June 30th. 

A greater number of merchandize cars would have been constructed 
during the pastyear, but for the large and increasingamount of work necess- 
ary to be done at the repair shops for finishing the construction of the road 
to Buflington, and for the Vermont and Canada Road. 

No doubt is entertained but that the Company can build their own 
merchandize cars better, and for a less cost, than they can be purchased of 
other car builders. It not unfrequently occurs, when repairs are light, that 
the repair hands are profitably employed in the construction of new cars, 
by thus keeping them constantly in work, which could not otherwise be 

No additional number of hands has been employed expressly for construc- 
ting new cars. Those that have been built, have been done by the surplus 
labor of the regular repair hands. 

Four first class locomotive engines have been purchased and placed upon 
the road within the present month, and twenty eight-wheel merchandize 
cars. Four additional engines will be required the coming spring. 

Contracts have been made on favorable terms for the Company for one 
hundred and sixty eight-wheel merchandize cars, to be delivered at the 
rate of six per week, twenty of which have already been delivered. 

This number, together with those being built at the repair shops of the 
* Cost from schedule, $102,811-14, f Cost from schedule, $129,795, 

4 Civil Engineering. 

Company, in addition to the present stock, will probably be sufficient for 
the ordinary business of the road the coming season, provided the Ogdens- 
burg company furnish cars for all through business from their road. 

From June 26, 1S48, (when the Road was first opened from W. R. Junction to Bethel,) 

to June 30, 1850. 
From Passengers: Gross earnings after deducting the proportion 

paid Road. 

; below, 


From Freight: Gross earnings, 

do. do. 


From Express: Gross 

do. do. 

. 2,266-54 

From U. S. Mails: Gross 

do. do. 


From Winooski Turnpike, . 


. 4,976-00 

From Miscellaneous, 



^91 1 00°-7-1 


For Repairs of Road, 

. 14,121.00 

For Fuel, Oil, and Waste, 



For Repairs of Engines, 


. 13,873-27 

For Repairs of Passenger Cars, 


For Repairs of Freight Cars, 

. 7,488-46 

For Salaries, Wages, &c, Passenger Department, 


For do. do. &c, Freight Department, 

. 23,689-66 

For Miscellaneous Expenses, 



For Gratuities and Damages, 

. . 


For Insurance, . 

• • • 


For Switchmen and Watchmen, 

. 4,576-41 

1 ^O n (\\-47 

Total nett Earnings 


There has been charged to repairs of road in the above amount, during 
the year ending June 30 (previous to which time nothing has been charged 
to that account,) one section hand and two helpers for each seven miles 
of track, as fast as the same was laid, and the road opened for business. 
This number is required to keep the track in proper running order when 
it is finished, and has therefore been charged accordingly since the road was 
opened, although in an unfinished state. This, however, is not the usual 
practice on other roads, as all repairs of track are charged to construction 
account until the whole is finally finished off' at grade. The road being 
new, no iron or ties were required for repairs, and no repairs on bridges, 
station houses, fences &c. 

All work done upon the road, other than the above, where the track 
was laid, was for sloping and finishing the sides of the excavations, digging 
ditches, hauling gravel, raising and surfacing track to final grade, widen- 
ing the embankments, covering bridges, building fences, &c. &c, the 
cost of all which has properly been charged to construction account. 

The business of the road has been steadily on the increase. The nett 
receipts, after paying the proportions of the roads below, were for the month 
of June over $21,000, July over 12,000, (business interrupted by freshet 
half the month,) August over $25,000, and September over $30,000. 

It is confidently believed, that uponthe final completion of the Vermont 
and Canada Road to a connexion with the Ogdensburgh Road by a bridge 
at Rouse's Point, the nett receipts of the road will at once be swelled far 
beyond the present amount. 

The Company have not had motive power and cars sufficient to do the 

Railway Travel in Great Britain. 5 

business offered during the past month. Notwithstanding a considerable 
number of cars were borrowed of the lower roads, the depots on the line 
are mostly filled to their utmost capacity with goods waiting for shipment. 

June 30, 1850. 
Stock on hand at the Repair Shops in Northfield, and Fuel, Oil, and Waste, $30,793-22 

Whole number of Passengers carried in the Cars, . . 182,964$ 

" " - " one mile, . . 3,319,535 

" " Tons of Freight " in the Cars, . . 61,968 

" " " " " one mile, . . 2,294,981 

The above includes the number of passengers and tons of merchandize carried one mile 
on the Central Road only, and not the number carried to and from the roads below in 
Central cars. 

Number of Miles run by Engines and Trains during the year ending June 30, 1850. 
Passenger Trains, ...... 90,890 

Freight, ........ 62,370 

Gravel and other Trains, ..... 45,000 

Total number of miles run by all trains, . . 198,260 

Cost of work done and materials delivered and not paid for , and estimated cost of ma- 
terials and work unfinished and necessary to be done (including land damages and 
fencing) to complete the whole road from Windsor to Burlington, October 31, 1850. 

Grading, Bridging, Masonry, and Riprapping, . . . $77,460 

Materials for Track, and laying, ..... 10,980 

Wharfing at Burlington, ..... 8,400 

Land Damages, ....... 50,000 

Depots and Fixtures, ...... 15,000 

Fencing, ........ 13,200 

Ballasting, ....... 30,000 

Total cost of finishing the Road, . . $205,040 

Estimated cost of new road furniture required to accommodate the ordinary business 
of the road, exclusive of business from the Ogdensburgh road. 

4 Locomotive Steam Engines, 

5 Passenger Cars, 
140 Eight-wheel Merchandize Cars, 

26 Eight-wheel Platform Stake Cars, 

10 Hand Cars, .... 

12 Eight-wheel Merchandize Cars (part finished,) 

Total estimated cost of new furniture, . $144,320 

at $8,000 


at 2,000 


at 600 


at 500 


at 100 


at 360 


Railivay Travel in Great Britain.* 

The number of passengers on the railways last year (says a correspon- 
ent of the Morning Herald) exceeded double the population of the United 
Kingdom, those traveling by third classes alone exceeding the whole of 
the population — young, old, rich, and poor. As, however, it can scarcely 
be supposed that more than one quarter of the people have availed 
themselves of the advantages of railway transit, it will follow that each 
passenger, on the average, has gone eight trips in the year — a journey to 
* From the London Builder, October 26, 1850. 


6 Civil Engineering. 

any place and back with return tickets being considered generally as only 
one journey. The capital already raised by railway companies (says the 
same writer) exceeds one quarter of the national debt of Great Britain 
and Ireland, and would be sufficient to purchase the whole of the pro- 
perty in Ireland rated to the poor at twenty years' purchase on the poor- 
law valuation. The aggregate amount of traffic on railways in the 

United Kingdom during the current year shows a very considerable in- 
crease over the corresponding period of 1849. The published total 
receipts from 1st January to 29th September, 1850, amounted to 
9,525,707/.; corresponding period of 1849 to 8,275,679/.; showing an 
increase of 1,250,028/. for that period. The receipts during the first 
quarter of 1850 amounted to 2,613,237; second quarter to 3,214,903/.; 
and third quarter to 3,697,567/.; being an increase over the correspond- 
ing periods in 1849 of 283,001/. in the first quarter ; 422,301/. in the 
second ; and 544,726/. in the third quarter. 

Statistics of Railways in Austria* 

According to a Vienna paper, the Austria, the railroads of the Austrian 
empire now embraces an extent of 290 Austrian miles (about 1400 
English miles.) The traffic of these lines in 1849 was 1,236,361 pas- 
sengers, and 17,880,800 quintals of merchandise. Other lines are in 
course of construction. 

On an Improved Locomotive Boiler. By Mr. Ramsbottom, of Man- 
(Paper read at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Birmingham, July 25th, 1849.) 

Without discussing the merits of the various arrangements and dispo- 
sitions of the working parts of locomotive engines, the author of the 
present paper proposes to make a few observations respecting the most 
vital part of these machines, that upon which the satisfactory perform- 
ance of all the details must necessarily depend — namely, the Boiler. 

Before proceeding to the immediate subject of this paper, it is proposed 
to point out one or two objections to locomotive boilers as at present 
constructed, which experience has brought under the author's notice ; 
and then to describe a form of boiler which appears to him in some de- 
gree calculated to remedy the defects which will be referred to. 

It is scarcely necessary to observe that the absolute power of a loco- 
motive, or any other steam engine, is strictly proportioned to the quan- 
tity of steam which the boiler of such engine can produce in a given 
time; and chemists are generally agreed that the quantity of atmospheric 
air required, (or oxygen, which is the supporter of combustion,) as well 
as the quantity of fuel, is in direct proportion to the quantity of water 
evaporated; or in other words, to produce more steam, it is not only 
necessary to supply more fuel, but also more atmospheric air in propor- 
tion to the quantity of steam produced. 

•From the London Mining Journal, No. 787. 

t From the London Civil Engineer and Architect's Journal, September, 1849. 

On an Improved Locomotive Boiler, 7 

It is well known that some of the locomotive engines built at the 
■present day have from two to three times as much heating surface as 
those built about eight or ten years ago, and consequently when per- 
forming a proportionately increased amount of duty, they require from 
two to three times the quantity of air forcing, through the hre in the same 

The working parts of these engines haVe also been increased in di- 
mensions ; the cylinders from 12 inches to 15 and 16 inches diameter, 
•the stroke from 16 inches to 20 and 24 inches, and the driving-wheels 
.from 4 ft. 6 in. to 6 feet diameter, and in many cases even more. 

Notwithstanding all these enlargements and improvements, there are 
however, two elements which have been but slightly ehanged — namely, 
the diameter of the blast-pipe, and the diameter of the cylindrical part of 
the boiler; and as the whole of the steam (after having performed its 
office in the cylinders) is driven in a forcible jet up the chimney for the 
purpose of producing the necessary draught through the fire, and as the 
power required to produce this jet is so much taken from the gross power 
■of the engine, it follows that the smaller the blast-pipe is in proportion 
to the. total heating surface of the boiler, the greater will be the resistance 
to the action of the piston, and the greater the loss of power on this 

From observations made upon engines under the author's immediate 
superintendence, it appears that whilst the heating surface of locomotive 
boilers has been increased from 400 square feet (in the year 1842) to 987 
square feet, r (in the year 1846,) the blast-pipe has not been in the slightest 
degree enlarged, but on the contrary, in the latter case has been reduced 
in area in the proportion of 121 to 8£ square inches. So that upon 
dividing the total heating surface or area of production, as it may be 
termed, by the size of the blast-pipe, or area of eduction, (assumed as 
unity,) the followng very instructive results are obtained : 

No. of Engine. When built. Area of blast Pipe. Heating Surface. 

4 24 . . 1842 . . . 1 . . . 4608 

20 . . . 1842 1 5044 

25 . . 1845 . . . 1 . . . 7961 

30 . . . 1846 1 12960 

In the last case, then, it appears that the heating surface has been in- 
creased nearly three-fold in proportion to the size of the blast-pipe, as 
compared with Engine No. 24 ; and the reason will be obvious when it 
is stated that the Engine No. 30 is only of the same diameter as the first- 
named, (No. 24,) and consequently that the flue-room (which as a general 
rule will be as the square of the diameter of the boiler) has been but 
slightly increased, the extra heating surface having been mainly obtained 
by enlarging the fire-box, by putting in a mid-feather, and by increasing 
the length rather than the number of tubes. 

It is not necessary to inquire how far the diameter of the cylinders 
may affect the size of the blast-pipe, nor to ascertain the amount of power 
which the blast-pipe absorbs, though it may be stated that experience 
proves it to range from 10 to 20 per cent, of the gross power of the 
engine, according to the number, diameter, and length of tubes, and 
also the speed of the engine. It may be remarked, however, that on 

8 Civil Engineering. 

the average a degree of exhaustion is required in the fire-box under ordinary 
circumstances equal to a column of water 4 inches in height, and the de- 
gree of exhaustion in the smoke-box must of course be greater than this 
by the resistance offered by the tubes to the passage of the heated gases- 
from the fire-box to the smoke-box. 

From experiments made about 2\ years ago upon an engine with a 
total heating surface of 987 feet, carrying 147 tubes of If inch external 
diameter and 13 ft. 10 in. long, the author found that the latter force was 
at all velocities three times as great as the former; or in other words, that 
66 per cent, of the total force of the blast was required to overcome the 
resistance offered by the tubes to the passage of the heated gases, leaving 
33 per cent, only to operate upon the fuel ; and it is this evil whieh re- 
sults from the comparatively limited flue area of the boilers as at present 
constructed, to which attention is now more particularly called, and 
which it is proposed to remedy in the manner now to be explained. 

From what has been said, it will readily be inferred that there is some 
difficulty in materially increasing the power of locomotive engines, as 
the necessary amount of heating surface cannot be obtained without in- 
creasing the diameter or the length of the boiler, or making it oval, to 
all of which plans there are some objections; but by the method now 
proposed it will be easy to enlarge both the fire-box and tube surface 
from 35 to 40 per cent., without increasing either the diameter of the 
boiler or its length, as will be now shown. 

It is proposed to construct the copper fire-box with an arched roof, 
the top of which shall be nearly as high as the top of the cylindrical 
part of the boiler. This box may of course be made any length without 
sensibly reducing the strength of the roof, and will require none of the 
stay-bars which are so essential to the security of the fiat-roofed box, and 
which for a moderate sized engine weigh not less than 400 lb. 

With such a box the whole of the cylindrical part of the boiler can 
be filled with tubes, and of course the whole of the longitudinal stays 
be removed ; and in the present instance there are 225 tubes of 2 inches 
external diameter, the shell of the boiler being 3 ft. 8 in. diameter and 
10 feet long ; the total heating surface of the fire-box is 80 feet, and of 
the tubes 1177 feet, making a total heating surface of 1257 feet. Such 
an arrangement involves the necessity of keeping the boiler full of water, 
and it is therefore requisite that a separate steam-chamber should be pro- 
vided. This consists of a cylinder which is 13 feet long and 20 inches 
diameter, fixed over and parallel to the cylindrical part of the boiler, or, 
as it may now be termed, the generator. This tube, which has a cubic 
capacity of 28.^ feet, is connected at each end with the generator. It is 
proposed that the water shall occupy about one-fourth of the capacity of 
this tube, leaving a clear space of say 21 cubic feet for steam ; this is 
rather more steam-room than most modern boilers possess, and for reasons 
which are afterwards mentioned, the author thinks it will be sufficient, 
although it may readily be incceased by slightly enlarging the diameter 
of the steam-chamber, which as at present shown, is not so high as the 
ordinary steam dome by about 12 inches. 

It has been proved experimentally by Mr. Robert Stephenson, that the 
generative power of the copper fire-box is three times as great per unit 

On an Improved Locomotive Boiler. 9 

of surface as that of the tubes ; and independent of this authority, loco- 
motive engineers are generally agreed that the great bulk of the steam 
generated in a locomotive boiler is formed upon the surface of the cop- 
per fire-box, and the first IS or 20 inches length of the tubes. As the 
whole of the steam has to rise through the body of the water with which 
it is for the time mechanically mixed, and as the specific gravity of these 
mixed fluids will be much less than the comparatively immixed water at 
the smoke-box end of the boiler, it follows that there will be a brisk 
circulation through the generator and steam-chamber. The mixed steam 
and water will be driven into the upper vessel, and will there be effectu- 
ally separated ; the former passing off to the cylinders by the longitudinal 
pipe, which has a number of small holes upon its upper surface, and the 
latter running again into the generator through the vertical connexion at 
the front end, and thus keeping up the circulation. 

That the specific gravity of the mixed steam and water at the fire-box 
end is often reduced to at least one-half that of water alone, is proved 
by the fact that the water gauge will frequently show a downward cur- 
rent through the glass tube, even though the circulating fluids be one-half 
water and one-half steam, showing as it does that the column of the 
mixed fluids in the boiler is specifically lighter than the column in the 
glass gauge ; and from this fact it is also evident that this great expansion 
is confined to the water in the vicinity of the fire-box, since if it ex- 
tended to the whole mass, the boiler would not contain the requisite 

From the circumstance that no bubble of steam can rise into the steam- 
chamber between the points marked A and B, it is concluded that this 
boiler will not be so liable to prime as the common one, and therefore 
that the steam-chamber as shown is sufficiently large. As to the water 
surface, which in this boiler it may be objected is smaller than in others, 
it is conceived that the great facilities this boiler will give to the engineer 
for raising steam, will leave him comparatively at liberty to put in water 
when an/1 where he chooses, and consequently that but little difficulty 
need be apprehended on this point. It is evident, however, that the ob- 
jection may be fully met by constructing the outer fire-box with a pyra- 
midal roof in the way so common. 

In conclusion, the author would express his conviction that this boiler, 
combining as it does, a great increase of heating surface, and correspond- 
ing increase ofjlue area, with a relative diminution of bulk and weight, 
and great simplicity of construction, is calculated to remove some of the 
difficulties experienced by locomotive engineers, and to promote the best 
interests of the railway world in general. 

Remarks made at the Meeting after the reading of the foregoing Paper. 

The Chairman said, that in the unavoidable absence of Mr. Ramsbot- 
tom, he would observe that his object in the foregoing paper was to 
obtain a considerably larger area of flue-room than in the present locomo- 
tive boilers, and to make a boiler of a large heating surface with less 

Mr. Slate was of opinion, that for the weight the engine carried, it 
would have a considerably greater effective heating surface than any pre- 

10 Civil Engineering. 

vious form of boiler ; but he thought the boiler would have as great a 
tendency to prime as any other. 

Mr. Cowper was also of opinion there would be a great tendency to 
prime in the proposed boiler ; the surface from which the steam had to 
rise was the entire surface of the fire-box and tubes, and all the steam 
had to pass through the two openings into the steam-chamber, and it 
appeared to him the water would be carried up there in a complete state 
of froth. 

Mr. McConnell, while agreeing to a certain extent as to the liability of 
the boiler to prime, thought it might be obviated by having a more con- 
tinuous communication between the generator and the steam-chamber; 
perhaps the steam-chamber could be fixed close upon the top of the 
generator, and a continuous longitudinal opening be made, communica- 
ting between them throughout the entire length. He thought the propo- 
sition of Mr. Ramsbottom was a very good one, as it was a received 
opinion that the proportion of the flue-room to the fire-grate surface could 
not be too large, supposing that full advantage was taken of the flue 
surface before the heated air reached the chimney. Whether long tubes 
or short tubes as applied to locomotives were most advantageous, was a 
question not yet decided, and he thought they had scarcely data enough to 
determine as to the advantage of long tubes on the ground of economy. 
It was a very important matter to determine what length of tubes was 
most advantageous for use in proportion to the area of the fire-grate. 

Mr. C. Cowper was not aware whether there was any authority re- 
specting the proportionate heating power of the tubes and the fire-box^ 
besides the experiment of Mr. Stephenson alluded to in the paper. 

Mr. McConnell remarked, that it appeared from experiments made by 
Mr. Stephenson and Mr. Beyer, that a very considerable heat was lost in 
the smoke-box even at the end of the longest tubes that were used; and 
he thought that the air in the centre of the tubes might have a considera- 
bly higher temperature than the air at the sides of the tubes, and that 
much of the heat might be carried through by a stream of air like a solid 
bar in the centre of each tube, without ever coming in contact with the 
sides of the tube, and consequently without being communicated to the 
water of the boiler. He had been informed that it w r as found to be a 
useful practice in marine and stationary boilers, to create a disturbance 
in the currents of air passing through the flues, for the purpose of 
mixing up the particles as much as possible ; and a similar advantage 
might probably be obtained by mixing the air in the tubes of locomotive 

Mr. Gibbons said he had observed a similar advantage from mix- 
ing the particles of air in heating the air for his blast furnaces near 
Dudley ; the pipes through which the air was passed for the purpose 
of heating it were bent like a syphon, so as to cause all the particles of 
air to come in contact with the sides of the pipes, and the air was found 
to be heated much more efficiently by these bent pipes than by straight 

Mr. Allan said he had tried an engine with a ^-inch iron rod fixed in 
the centre of each tube ; the rods were as long as the tubes and sup- 
ported at intervals by short projecting pins to hold them in the centre of 

On an Improved Locomotive Boiler. 11 

the tubes. The engine had been worked with them for some time be- 
tween Birmingham and Liverpool, but no difference was found in the 
working and consumption of coke, as compared with the same engine 
doing the same work without the rods in the tubes ; the result was found 
to be exactly the same in both cases. 

Mr. C. Cowper remarked that the rods in the tubes would have the 
effect of contracting considerably the flue area, and increasing propor- 
tionately the amount of power requisite to draw the air through the 
tubes, and consequently the rods in the tubes would cause a loss of power 
to the engine from the increased resistance to the blast. He thought, 
therefore, the rods must have caused an equal amount of gain to neu- 
tralize this loss, by bringing the air into more effective contact with the 
sides of the tubes; as the result showed no loss on the whole. 

Mr. McConnell thought it was certain at least, that the use of the rods 
did no harm ; and it must either be considered that there was no advan- 
tage in a large flue area, or that there was considerable advantage in 
mixing the air in passing through the tubes. 

Mr. Slate was of opinion that even on the ground of economy a large 
number of tubes was advisable, because with the violent and frequent 
action of the pieces of coke the tubes were soon worn out ; whereas, 
by increasing the number of tubes, the velocity of the draft would 
be diminished, and the tubes would be less worn, and would last longer. 

The Chairman remarked, that the larger the area of the flue, the 
better it was for the engine, as it must offer less resistance to the blast- 
pipe; but he was not certain what this resistance actually amounted to. 

Mr. Cowper said that Mr. Daniel Gooch had found from his indicator 
cards, that the resistance of the blast-pipe amounted to 11 or 12 lb. per 
square inch, at a moderate velocity of about 30 miles an hour. 

Mr. McConnell observed, that as a certain quantity of heated air had 
to be conveyed from the fire-box to the chimney, and a certain area of 
heating surface was also required, there would be an important reduction 
effected in the resistance of the blast-pipe by increasing the number of 
tubes, so as to increase the area of passage and reduce the length of the 
tubes, diminishing proportionately the resistance of the air passing through 
the tubes. 

The Chairman said he was present when the experiments were tried 
that were mentioned by Mr. Ramsbottom, to ascertain the difference be- 
tween the degree of exhaustion in the smoke-box and the fire-box ; the 
experiments were tried with a long boiler engine, and a glass water 
gauge was fitted into the smoke-box and another into the fire-box. The 
degree of exhaustion in the smoke-box averaged three times as great as 
that in the fire-box, and this proportion was found to be nearly the same 
at all velocities ; the greatest amount of exhaustion observed in the 
smoke-box supported a column of water 13 inches high. He thought 
that the whole resistance of the blast-pipe and the back pressure in the 
cylinder; did not amount to more than 15 per cent, of the power of the 

Mr. Slate remarked, that assuming it to be 15 per cent, it followed 
that 10 per cent, of the whole power of the engine was absorbed by 
the friction of the air in passing through the tubes, as the exhaustion 

12 American Patents. 

in the smoke-box was three times as great as in the fire-box ; or one- 
third only of the pressure of the blast was effectively acting in the 

Mr. McConnell thought it was an important subject for investigation, 
to ascertain the actual power lost by the resistance of blast-pipes of dif- 
ferent sizes, and under the different circumstances of size and number of 
tubes. In his own practice he found that small tubes and many of them 
produced the best effect; the limit in reducing the size of the tubes was 
their stopping up with pieces of coke whilst working. 

The Chairman said he thought there was some advantage in the form 
of boiler proposed by Mr. Itamsbottom, and that amongst the various 
modifications that had been proposed of the locomotive boiler, there was 
not one that was likely to be so useful. 


List of American Patents which issued from November 12 to December 10, {inclusive,) 
1850, with Exemplifications by Charles M. Keller, late Chief Examiner of Pa- 
tents in the U. S. Patent Office. 

17. For an Improved Filter for Oils,- Thomas Antisell, City of New York, November 12. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the employment of a filter made as hereinafter 
described, by the forcible compression of which downwards through the liquid to be filter- 
ed and purified, the thinner liquid is separated from the more solid parts, and is made to 
pass upwards through the filter, above which it may be drawn off by suitable arrange- 

Claim . — "I do not lay claim to the congealing of oils by cold, nor to the use of a screw 
to exert pressure; but what I do claim as my invention, is the use of a filter formed as de- 
scribed, carried downwards by pressure, under the force of which the oleic acid is filtered 
upwards, and which, applied in connexion with the arrangement described for applying 
cold, allows oils and fats to be purified in warm weather." 

18. For a Machine for making Jack Chains,- Charles Atwood and George Kellogg, 
Birmingham, New Haven County, Connecticut, November 12. 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the combination of the parts, movements, 
and operations in one machine, which are required to make jack chains by one process 
from the straight wire, after it is cut off in suitable lengths, to finished chain, substantially 
as described. 

"We also claim particularly the stud-pin with a recess in it, substantially as herein de- 
scribed; that is, the use of it as a mandrel, around which the bow of a link is bent, while 
the bow of another link is held in the recess, thereby forming a continuous chain, and 
irrespective of the mechanical devices by which it is moved or used. 

"We also further claim the partly revolving mandril, with its stud and nipper, and 
other appendages for bending the last bow of each link, substantially as combined and 
used in our machine and constituting part of it." 

19. For an Improvement in Repeaters for Electro-Magnetic Telegraphs,- Charles S. 
Bulkley, Macon, Bibb county, Georgia, November 12. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the manner of connecting two galvanic 
circuits with the two electro-magnets (a a and d d) in the said repeater, substantially as 
herein represented and described, to wit: each of the said galvanic circuits, as it passes 
through my said Telegraphic Repeater, embracing in its course the armature of the op- 
posite electro-magnet — in the said instrument — previous to its passing through the helices 
in the electro-magnet embraced in its own respective circuit. 

American Patents which issued in November, 1850. 13 

"In combination with the above, I also claim the connecting the points, with the gal- 
vanic batten,-, (or batteries,) when the said points are placed in such positions in relation 
to the armatures, of the electro-magnets in my said Telegraphic Repeater, that when 
either one of the said electro-magnets is charged, it will, by attracting its armature against 
one of the points b, or /, close the poles of the galvanic circuit in which the opposite 
electro-magnet (in the instrument) is in connexion, and thereby throw the battery into 
the said circuit, substantially as herein set forth." 

20. For an Improvement in Seed Planters,- Samuel Cannon, New Richmond, Crawford 
count}", Pennsylvania, November 12. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the attachment of my vertical cylinders 
to the rear of my ploughs or cultivator (without regard to any particular plough) in com- 
bination with its machinery, arranged substantially in the manner and for the purposes 
herein set forth." 

21. For an Improvement in Printing Machines,- Oliver T. Eddy, Baltimore, Maryland,. 
November 12. 

"Claim. — "What I claim as new is — 1st, I claim the type form, constructed substan- 
tially as described and represented, viz : with the types arranged in rows, longitudinally 
and laterally, in such manner as to permit each type to be brought to a given position, 
at the will of the operator, to be pushed upon the paper by the plunger or its equivalent. 

"2d, I claim the combination of the two motions, which I have called lateral and longi- 
tudinal, for the purpose of bringing the type or character required in position to make its 

"3d, I claim the wedge-shape movement in combination with a type form, substantially 
as described and represented, for the purpose of giving motion to the latter. 

"4th, I claim the manner of adjusting with precision the required position of the type 
form, by the use of gauges, substantially as described and represented, in combination 
with the two motions already described as giving motion to the type form, or in any com- 
bination substantially the same. 

"5th, I claim the inking of the types, by the inker interposed, during the action of the 
machine, between the face of the types and the paper. 

"6th, I claim the use of the bob, substantially as described and represented, to furnish 
the power to cause the pressure on the types, or the inking of the same. 

"7th, I claim the combination of the bob, whose fall produces the pressure on the 
tvpes, with a contrivance by which, after the blow is given, a second blow or vibration is 

"8th, I claim the use of the slats, substantially as described and represented, or other 
analogous device, controlling the motion of the machine, combined with the rods answer- 
ing to the letters or characters wanted, by means of the catcher on which the slats may 
be moved separately or together, in any combinations of time or extent of motion that 
may be required for the action necessary to produce the given character. 

"9th, I claim the draft rod and lever, in combination with the slat, or its equivalent, to 
produce the various movements required to control the types." 

22. For an Improvement in Horse-Shoe Machinery,- Samuel S. Greene, Lowell, Middle- 
sex county, Massachusetts, Aovember 12. 
Claim. — "What I claim, is the combination of the two Handled rotating dies arranged 
with respect to each other, and operating substantially as herein described; said dies being 
so shaped as to give the requisite form to the metallic shoes of animals." 

23. For an Improvement in Drying Paints,- Aquilla Jones, City of New York, No- 
vember 12. 

"The nature of my invention consists in providing a new material as a drying substance 
to be mixed with linseed or other oils, to be used in zinc^and other paints, in order that the 
oil so prepared will cause the paints to dry more effectually than in the known pro- 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is a method of giving a drying quality to 
oils by the use of a mineral commonly known by the name of the "Red Oxide of Zinc," 

Vol. XXI. — Tuihd Series. — No. 1. — Jaxuart, 1851. 2 

14 American Patents. 

in a partially deoxidized state, and either in combination with those substances naturally 
associated with it, or by the use of any of its component parts, separated by mechanical 

24. For an Improvement in Iron Railings,- John Krauser, Sommers Crowcll, and 
Cyrus Krauser, Reading, Berks county, Pennsylvania, November 12. 
Claim. — ''What we claim as our invention, is the combination of rods, tubes, and 
pailings, with the manner of operating the same, as herein set forth and described." 

25. For an Improvement in Cooking Stoves,- Samuel Pierce, Troy, Rensselaer county, 
New York, November 12. 

"My invention consists in heating the front end of the said oven with hot air, by causing 
air to enter a heating chamber back of the fire-back, and then to pass along a flue or 
flues in the hearth to the front end of the extended oven, and thence through the oven, 
escaping into the back fire flues of the stove through holes in the back oven plates; the 
exhausting action of the draft in the fire flues inducing the required current of heated 
air as above indicated. In this way I am enabled to produce, by a single device, the 
double effect of heating the front end of an extended oven, and at the same time to keep 
up a circulation of heated air in and through the oven." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method of heating the front end of the 
extended part of the oven, in combination with, and receiving the heated air from, the hot 
air chamber behind the fire back, and causing it to pass through the oven and out into 
the fire flues, in the manner substantially as described, and for the double purpose of 
heating the front end of the oven and passing a current of heated air through the oven, 
substantially as specified." 

26. For an Improvement in Sewing Machines,- Allen B. Wilson, Pittsfield, Berkshire 
county, Massachusetts, November 12. 

"The nature of my improvements, which are applicable to a machine in which two 
threads are used, viz : one passed through the cloth by a needle leaving a loop through 
which another thread is passed by a shuttle, consists, firstly, in an improved mode of opera- 
ting the vibrating arm which carries the needle ; secondly, in an improved mode of opera- 
ting the shuttle by which I can pass a thread during each of its motions, one during its 
motion in one direction, and another during its motion in the opposite direction ; and 
thirdly, in an improved mode of holding and moving the cloth to be stitched." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is forming a stitch by each throw of the 
shuttle and corresponding motion of the needle ; that is to say, making one stitch at each 
forward and another at each backward motion of the shuttle; this being effected by the 
needle in combination with the shuttle, both constructed, arranged, and operating as 
herein described, or in any other mode substantially the same. 

"2d, I claim the combination of the sliding bar, the plate, r, the feeding plate V, the 
spring, the screw, the lever, and the clamping plate, for holding and feeding the cloth to 
the needle and regulating the length of the stitch, in the manner herein described, or in 
any way substantially the same." 

27. For Hinged Gun-Harpoons,- William Albertson, New London, Connecticut, No- 
vember 19. 
"The nature of my invention consists in making the shanks of harpoons, or other 
whale irons, with a hinge joint at or near the middle of their length, which admits of 
their being folded, and inserted nearly up to the head, within the barrel of a gun, being 
so formed as to fit easily in the said barrel; the line is made fast to the shank close to the 
head and also at the end, the part of the line between the head and the end of the shank 
which lays close to the shank during the flight of the harpoon, or while the shank is 
straightened, is folded when the shank is in the gun, and hangs outside in the form of a 
loop: by this contrivance the line can be made fast to the end of the shank, as well as 
near the head, without placing it in the barrel of the gun, and the shank (each joint being 
in the form of half a cylindrical tube, or otherwise hollowed out for the sake of lightness) 
may be made to fit the barrel of the gun so as to be capable of being projected with great 
accu racy, without rendering it necessary to make it of great weight." 

American Patents which issued in November, 1850. 15 

Claim. — "What I claim as new in my invention, is, making the shank of harpoons 
and other whale irons, to fold by a hinge or joint at any convenient point in their length. 
in the manner and for the purposes substantially as herein described." 

28. For an Improvement in Bake Ovens,- Hosea Ball, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 
November 19. 
Claim.- — "What I claim therein as new, and of my invention, is, the combination and 
arrangement of an endless chain platform, with the oven, by which arrangement the un- 
baked bread or other articles being put in at one end, are discharged at the opposite end 
completely baked; and in combination therewith, I claim the self-opening and closing 
door, arranged substantially as herein set forth." 

29. For an Improvement in Working the Doors of a Bee-hive,- Jarvis Case, Selma, 
Ohio, November 19. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement of the bee boxes and moth 
chambers, in combination with the sliding screen doors, pulleys, and levers, as described, 
so that the doors may be worked by a single movement of the lever, hi the manner and 
for the purposes set forth." 

30. For an Improvement in Air-heating Furnaces,- Gardner Chilson, Boston, Massa- 
chusetts, November 19. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is, 1st, the annular chamber, constructed and arranged 
substantially in the manner and for the purposes set forth — with or without the cross 

"2d, I also claim the mode of conducting off the products of combustion from the fire 
through ascending pipes, into an annular chamber, and thence into a central descending 
pipe to their exit; and the surfaces being all so constructed of a curved figure, as to allow 
a diverting influence, and free circulation to the exterior air in the air chamber, to be 
warmed without over-heating it; while it is, by the arrangement of parts, forced to impinge 
directly against the heated surfaces. 

"I also claim the method of setting the furnace, consisting of a double-walled chamber, 
the inner wall of which encloses a cold air trench, supplied from without, that surrounds 
the ash-pit, with openings at its top for the proper admission of air into the air chamber 
around the furnace, and with lateral openings into the space between the walls to cause 
an upward current, which is connected with the warm air pipes leading to the apartments, 
by means of which a constant and pure supply of air is insured, and the heat greatlv 

31. For an Improvement in Corn Shellers,- David Eldridge, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 
November 19. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new and my improvement, is the combination of the wheels, 
C, D, and E, for shelling corn, as herein described." 

32. For an Improvement in Mills for Grinding and Crushing,- William Frost, City of 
New York, November 19. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the use of a round cylinder mounted on a 
shaft, and driven by hand, steam, or other power, in grooves of tlie cylinder; inside art- 
crushers or rollers of a peculiar form, containing, if necessary, similar crushers within 
themselves all of which when the cylinder revolves rotate by the friction against their 
peripheries and are used for breaking, bruising, or grinding different substances put into 
the cylinder, the outlets and inlets for the material operated on, also the crushers and 
position of the machine, being made according to the particular purpose for which the 
machine is intended." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my improvement is the use of the cylinder, grooved and 
notched, or smooth, being made to rotate, and having within it any number of crushers, 
formed as described, for the purpose of pounding, grinding, or mixing any substance; the 
crushers either running singly or for the purpose of working different substances sbnul- 

16 American Patents. 

taneously one within another; the jumping bar or pins at N, in combination with the 
arrangement shown, or any other arrangement substantially the same." 

33. For an Improved Annunciator or Bell Telegraph; John Garvey, City of New York, 
November 19. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new and of my own invention, is the combination and 
arrangement of the spring levers, suspended bar or striker, with the pendulums and bells, 
for simultaneously indicating the number of the room, and calling the attention thereto 
by giving the alarm ; there being a secondary or intermediate fulcrum bar against which 
the spring lever impinges on its descent, increased by the spring by which the rear end is 
made to descend, and with it the suspended striker, upon the bells, and at the same time 
suddenly elevating the front end of the lever, and imparting a vibratory movement to its 
pendulum; said spring levers being provided with oblong openings or slots, through which 
the fulcrum bar passes, for producing the aforesaid action of the spring levers on its de- 
scent upon the intermediate fulcrum bar, as described and represented." 

34. For an Improvement in Photographic Pictures on Glass, SfC; Frederick Langen- 
heim, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, November 19. 

"The nature of my invention consists in placing a semi-transparent material or sub- 
stance, for example, ground or frosted glass, in front or behind the said transparent pic- 
ture, the effect of which is to concentrate the light in the ground or frosted glass, at the 
same time preventing objects behind the picture from being visible through the lighter or 
more transparent parts of the picture, and which ground or frosted glass also protects the 
picture from external injury." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the ground or frosted 
glass, or other semi-transparent substance, interposed in connexion with the picture, be- 
tween the source of light and the spectator, substantially as described in the foregoing 

35. For a Method of Attaching Augers to their Handles,- John E. Larkin, Ballston Spa, 
Saratoga county, New York, November 19. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new in my invention, is the handle, made in two parts, one 
of which, D, fits in a socket on the other, A, and carries a bolt screwed at its end ; the 
said bolt passing through a hole in the auger shank, and screwing into a female screw or 
nut in the part A, for the purpose of clasping or firmly holding the auger shank between 
the ends of the parts A and D of the handle or stock, substantially in the manner herein 

36. For an Improvement hi Copper and Steel Plate Printing Presses,- Elijah C. Mid- 
dleton and Edward Nevers, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Robert Neale, Mount Carmel, 
Ohio, November 19. 

Claim. — "What we claim therein as of our invention, is, 1st, the arrangement of a 
tooth or catch projecting from the roller, and operating upon a tooth or projection upon the 
platen for the purpose of starting the platen and causing the commencement of the convexi- 
ty of the roller to impinge upon any required point of the length of the platen, for the 
purpose described. 

"2d, The combination of the racks with the cog wheel attached to the connecting rod 
of a gang of rollers, together with the beads and the grooves in the rollers for security, 
uniformity of action, and a proper relative position between the platen and the support- 
ing rollers upon which it traverses, thus preventing lateral and longitudinal aberration. 

"3d, The method of heating and retaining at a suitable temperature the plates from 
which the impressions are to be taken, by means of lamps, or of vessels containing in- 
flammable material, placed under the upper plate of the platen or traversing bed, within 
the recess formed between that and the plate resting immediately upon the gang of 

"4th, The arrangement of a stationary and sliding clamp, adjustable longitudinally of 
the platen, for securing the plate in position, substantially in the manner described. 

"5th, We claim in combination with the D roller the method of retracting the platen 
by the weighted cord, assisted by making an inclined plane of the bed on which the rollers 

American Patents which issued in November, 1850. 17 

37. For Irnvrovemmts in Excavating Machines,- Martin Newman, Jr., Lanesborough, 

Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, November 19. 

"The nature of my invention consists in a rotating cylinder or drum, hung in suitable 
frame work, so constructed that it can be elevated or depressed, or moved in either direction 
sideways ; the cylinder is driven in either direction by a band or chain from a pulley 
actuated by suitable mechanism; attached to the band or chain is the bucket or scoop 
which digs out and carries away the earth ; this is provided with wheels, and while it is 
net upon the drum, runs up on a railway on the frame, but when it comes in contact 
with the drum, it has a motion in a circular direction, and at that time it is intended to 
perform its operation, being returned along the railway when full by reversing the motion 
of the band or chain until it reaches the back of the frame, when the bottom is caused to 
fall or open and discharge the dirt." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is, 1st, operating the bucket by giving motion 
to the band or chain, and to the drum in one direction to fill the bucket, and then re- 
versing its motion so as to draw back the bucket to be emptied, in the manner substan- 
tially as herein described. 

"2d, I claim the manner substantially as herein described of closing the bottom or 
trap of the bucket by means of the spring or incline, over which it passes in its forward 

38. For an Improvement in Pessaries,- Jonathan Hovey Robinson, Charlestown, Mid- 

dlesex county, Massachusetts, November 19. 
Claim. — "What I claim is the solid connector with its connecting contrivance, (or its 
equivalent,) and joint in combination with the supporting stem, the whole being sub- 
stantially in the manner and for the purpose as herein before specified." 

39. For an Improvement in Extension Tables,- Edwin F. Shoenberger, Pittsburg, Alle- 
gheny county, Pennsylvania, November 19. 

"My invention consists in the construction and combination of the several sections of 
• xtension tables, bedsteads or other articles, in such a manner as to slide inside of each 
other, so that when the several parts are pushed together, the whole shall be enclosed in 
one section." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is not the construction of tables or other 
articles, and requiring extension, in sections, because that has been known and used before; 
but what I do claim as my invention, is the construction of extension tables in such a 
manner as that the sliding parts when extended shall constitute a table complete without 
any replacing of panels to form the leaf, substantially in the manner herein before set 

40. For an Improvement in Spark Arresters,- Samuel Swett, City of New York, No- 
vember 19. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is combining, in the manner substantially as 
described, with the chimney, the surrounding jacket and the cap, a valve for governing 
an aperture in the top plate of the cap, so balanced or weighted that it shall open by 
gravity when the furnace is working under a draft due to the rarefaction of the column, 
and be closed by the force of the current when increased by the exhaust steam in the 
chimney, for the purpose and in the manner substantially as described. 

"And I also claim in combination with the valve and the wire gauze, or the equivalents 
thereof, and the deflector over the chimney, all arranged substantially as herein specified, 
the central tube of the deflector and the conical ring within the wire gauze, substantially 
as herein specified and for the purposes set forth." 

41. For an Improvement in Bedsteads,- Wilhelm Raiser, Cincinnati, Ohio, Novem- 
ber 19. 
Claim. — '"What I claim therein as new, is the combination of the slats, clasps and 
hooks athwart the length of the outside slats, in combination with the rails and latches 
on the posts, the whole combiiung to form a strong and portable bedstead." 


18 American Patents. 

42. For Improvements in Machines for Feeding Nail Plate,- Frederick J. Ayres, St. 
John, New Brunswick, November 26, 1850. 

'•Having thus described my improved feeding apparatus for a nail-cutting engine of the 
kind above stated, what I claim therein is as follows: 

"Although I have described particular mechanism as applied to the frame, for raising 
the strip of metal high enough above the bed die to admit of its being turned over as ex- 
plained, I do not claim such mechanism in itself separate, or uncombined with the frame 
and machinery by which the strip of metal is progressively advanced towards the dies, 
but what I do claim is the combination of such raising mechanism with the machinery 
for imparting to the strip of metal its progressive forward movements as specified; the 
mechanism so combined with the said machinery, being the bale, the rod, the lever or arm, 
the crank, shaft, drum, belts, and the arms /', m', of the lever beam; the whole being ar- 
ranged, and made to operate together substantially as specified. 

"And I further claim, in combination with the mechanism which produces the progres- 
sive advancing movements of the strip of metal towards and between the cutters, the 
mechanism for producing the retrograde movement of the pincers, after the strip of metal 
has been entirely operated upon by the cutters; such mechanism being the pulleys, the 
endless belt, the movable frame, and clutch, or their equivalent, the vertical rock shaft, 
and its arms, the cams, the lifting bar, and its spring catch, together with the slide, and 
its projections, the whole being constructed and made to operate together essentially as 
specified. And I claim the combination of the arm z, 2 with the shaft w, 2 and the me- 
chanism for moving the clutch, the said arm being for the purpose of creating a retrograde 
movement of the clutch, so as to unclutch the pulley t' from the shaft e, and this when 
the entire retrogradation of the nippers has been effected the same being accomplished 
as herein before specified. 

"And in combination with the mechanism which produces the reciprocating rotary 
movements of the nippers or strip of metal held thereby, I claim the combination of 
mechanism for arresting or stopping such rotary motion immediately on the final retro- 
gradation of the pincers taking place, such mechanism being the levers z, 4 and n, 3 the 
connecting rod p, 3 arm g, 3 shaft r, 3 arm s, 3 spring catch y, as applied together and to the 
lever beam, and lifting bar y, 2 as described. 

"And I claim the combination of mechanism by which the progressive advancing and 
intermittent secondary retrograde movements of the strip of metal are produced, the same 
consisting of the long bar I, 2 and its connecting frame p, 2 the feed and pressure rollers, 
the shaft g, 2 and pulley, the strap or belt, and its rods, the levers z/ and v,' connected 
together as descriced, and the cams on the shaft e. And in combination therewith, and 
the lifting bar y, 2 I claim the bent lever i, 3 the same being applied to the same, and 
used for the purpose substantially as herein before specified." 

43. For an Improvement in Cutters for Planing Machines,- Enos G. Allen, Boston, 
Massachusetts, and Charles Briggs, New Bedford, Massachusetts, November 26. 
Claim. — "What we claim as our invention is, arranging a series of shaving knives in 
continuous succession upon the periphery of a conoidal wheel, whereby a continuous ser- 
rated shaving instrument is produced whose uninterrupted action by preventing jarring 
produces a smoother surface." 

44. For an Improvement in Ship Ventilators,- Ralph Bulklcy, City of New York, No- 
vember 26. 

"The nature of my invention consists in providing ventilators with floatable valves to 
be acted upon by the water which casually rises in contact with the ventilation, whereby 
the air orifice of the ventilator becomes closed during the time the water remains in con- 
tact with it." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is, the combination of 'floatable valves' with 
ventilators for ventilating vessels and steamers, and the combination of 'floatable valve 
ventilators' with vessels and steamers. The valves to be acted upon, by the raising and 
the falling of the water when in contact with the ventilator. The rising water to cause 
the valve to close the air orifice and prevent the entrance of water, and the falling water 
to permit the valve to recede by its own gravitation, and thereby open the air orifice. The 
devices and operations of the same as herein described, for the objects and purposes herein 
set forth." 

American Patents which issued in November, 1850. 19 

45. For an Improvement in Gang Ploughs; Henry Cowing, New Orleans, Louisiana, 
November 26. 

"The object of my invention is to furnish to the agriculturist a labor-saving machine, 
whereby steam may be profitably employed instead of manual labor or horse-power, in 
ordinary held operations, and elsewhere, especially in ploughing and cultivating land." 

Claim. — ''I claim the inclined coulters, so arranged as to throw out the ploughs without 
breaking, when thev meet with an obstruction, in the manner and for the purpose set 

"I claim the apparatus shown at n, m, fig. 5, for setting the frames for hilling in the 
manner above specified." 

46. For Improvements in Hanging Carriage Bodies; M. G. Hubbard, Geneva, Ontario 
county, New York, November 26. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new therein is the combination of elastic cross reaches, 
with a non-elastic centre support, the reaches being so connected with the centre support 
that they shall be free to bend throughout their length, substantially in the manner and 
for the purpose described." 

47. For an Improvement in Processes for Rendering Cordage Uninflammable,- M. Y. 

Johnson, New Orleans, Louisiana, administrator of James II. Johnson, deceased, 

late of New Orleans, Louisiana, November 26. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is my improved process of rendering vegeta- 
ble fibrous substances uninflammable and preserving them in that condition, substantially 
as herein set forth." 

48. For an Improvement in Fountain. Pens; Charles W. Krebs, Baltimore, Maryland, 
November 26. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the conical shape of the open end of the tube, 
which prevents the ink from running out too fast; anl also in providing a screw inside of 
the tube to control the pen, or nib, and extend it beyond and outside of the tube, or to 
withdraw it inside of the tube when not in use." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the pen nib made to project through the 
conical termination of the fountain, substantially in the manner and for the purpose set 
forth, and in connexion therewith I claim making the pen nib adjustable substantially as 

49. For an Improved Method of Securing Hails of Rail-roads; H. H. Mary, Gales 
burgh, Knox county, Illinois, November 26. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new is the diagonal position of the horns, by which, with 
the aid of the arms and clamps, the rails are secured in their position." 

50. For an Improvement in Sausage Stuffers; Simon McNair, Hattborough, Mont- 
gomery county, Pennsylvania, November 26. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is the introduction of a tube or case, D, into 
the case or cage, B, of a press and adapting it thereto in such manner as to form a sausage 
stuffer in combination therewith, which is operated by the same power and under the same 
piston and rod that acts upon the press, as herein substantially set forth." 

51. For Improvements in Screw Threading Machines; Thomas J. Sloan, City of New- 
York, November 26. 

"My present improvements relate to the method of threading wood screws by a series 
of chasing operations, and for doing this on pointed screws." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is the before-described, method of operating 
the jaws for griping and liberating the blank by means of the toggle joint and rod con- 
nected therewith, when this is combined with the method substantially as described of 
latching and unlatching the rod by means of the sliding collar acting on the inclined or 
beveled stem of the rod to draw it back, and force in the latch and then holding it in 

20 Jknerkan Patents. 

place by passing on to it, so as to avoid an endwise strain on the mandril against its 
boxes, substantially as described, and for the purpose specified. 

"I also claim so connecting the mould which governs the line of motion of the chaser, 
with the sliding frame, that it shall be free to vibrate therein, in manner substantially as 
described and for the purpose specified." 

52. For an Improvement in the Locking Apparatus of Repeating Fire-arms,- Joshua 
Stevens, Chicopee, Hampden county, Massachusetts, November 2G. 
Claim. — "My improvement, and what I claim as my invention, consists in hinging the 
dog or catch to the bolt, in combination with so making and applying the recess, and the 
spring together, and to the dog or catch, as to cause said spring to perform two functions, 
or to not only operate the dog or catch, but to operate the bolt, essentially in the manner 
as above described." 

53. For an Improvement in Shuttle Motions in Looms; Thomas T. Willcox, Norwich, 
New London county, Connecticut, November 26. 

"My invention consists, firstly, in an improved method of regulating the operation of 
the picker staves, so as to throw the shuttle with greater or less force as may be required; 
the picker staves are operated so as to throw the shuttle, by means of the flat bar springs, 
attached to oscillating boxes, which are mounted on fixed centres attached to the rocker, 
the ends of the springs bearing on short levers attached to the picker staves; the lower 
sides of the oscillating boxes are of semi-circular form and are attached together by chain* 
which are provided with a regulating screw, for the purpose of lengthening or shortening 
them and regulating the force exerted by the springs. 

"It further consists in forming the cams for operating the levers which draw back the 
picker staves, in such a manner as to prevent damage to the warp or to the mechanism, 
in case of the motion of the loom being accidentally reversed." 

Claim. — "I claim the boxes, oscillating upon fixed points, and having the flat bar 
springs attached to them, in combination with the chains, and the regulating screw and 
nut; for giving a more free and easy motion to the picker staves, and for the more effect- 
ually controlling and graduating the amount of pick." 

54. For a Combined Boiler, Cupola, and Grate; Loftis Wood, City of New York, 
November 26. 

Claim. — "What I claim therein as new is the boiler descending from the top to the 
bottom of the cupola in combination with the removable grate, the water contained in 
the boiler surrounding the heated iron and coals substantially as described. 

"I do not claim the use of the subsidiary grate, but I do claim it as making a part of 
the combination necessary to the proper and perfect action of my combined steam boiler 
and cupola smelting furnace." 

55. For an Improvement in Cooking Stoves,- Loftis Wood, City of New York, No- 
vember 26. 

"The nature of my improvement consists in placing one or more ovens between one or 
more fires on each side, and dividing the grates into compartments, to make a large or 
small fire, heating one or more ovens, as may be desired, and having a flue dividing the 
ovens, through which the heated air passes over the ends of the ovens, after passing over 
the top, two sides, and bottom of the same." 

Claim.- — -"What I claim as my invention is placing one or more ovens between one 
or more fires on each side, in connexion with a vertical flue, or flues, passing between the 
ovens, separating them substantially as described." 


1. For Improvements in Machinery for Turning Irregular Forms,- Timothy Clark, 

New Haven, Connecticut; patent dated January 19, 1847; re-issued November 12, 


Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is the arrangement of the cutter wheel, or 

aaws, so as to cut in the direction of the grain of the wood or other substance to b« 

American Patents which issued in November, 1850. 21 

formed, when this is combined with the rotation of the pattern and substance to be formed 
during the operation of the cutters, substantially as described. 

"I also claim the rotating cutter wheel constructed substantially as herein described of 
a series of circular saws, secured in an inclined position to an arbor which carries them as 
herein set forth." 

1. For a Design for Bas-relief of Henry Clay,- Charles Younglove Haynes, Philadel- 
phia, Pennsylvania, November 12. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my design is the combination of scroll-work and vignette 
which forms the ornamental tablet, the shield, on which history is recording the extract 
of Mr. Clay's address, together with the side-view attitude in which he is represented, 
and the ornamental tablet on which he stands, from which copies may be taken, for sale 
or use, either by casting, moulding, embossing, or in any manner, or with any material 
whatever in bas-relievo, or by copies to be taken, "by painting, drawing, sketching, etching, 
engraving on wood or metal, or by any material spread upon it, or by the electrotype, 
Talbotype, or Daguerreotype process, or by ruling with machinery, or in any other manner 

2. For a Design for Stoves,- Reuben J. Blanchard, Albany, New York, assignor to Bil- 
lings P. Learned and George H. Thatcher, of Albany, New York, November 12. 
Claim. — "What I do claim as my invention is the bunch of leaves tied together, as 
seen in fig. 1, and the leaf ornament in fig. 2, as such a design as above mentioned." 

3. For a Design for Stoves,- Apollos Richmond, Providence, Rhode Island, assignor to 
A. C. Barstow & Co., Providence, Rhode Island, November 12. 
Claim. — "What I do claim as my invention or production, is the combination of the 
several ornamented parts of the stove, viz: the the base plate or hearth, having the dia- 
monds and clustered beak heads cast thereon, as described, the side and back plates having 
a plinth with semi-pyramidal ribs, gothic arches, diamonds, beak heads, and band at top 
with inverted semi-pyramidal beak heads, the cap with its circular ornamented areas, and 
diamonds surrounding beak heads, and the vase with its exterior ornaments of diamonds, 
clustered beak heads, semi-pyramidal ribs, and open work diamonds; all the mouldings, 
beak heads, and ribs being cast in alto-relievo, as herein above described, and represented 
in the drawings, the whole combination forming an entirely new design for the exterior 
of a parlor air-tight stove." 

4. For a Design for Stoves; D. Root, Cincinnati, Ohio, November 12. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new is the desigti formed and ornamented substantially as 
above described, and represented in the accompanying drawings." 

5. For a Desigti for Carriage Plates; J. S. Roycc, Cuylcrville, Livingston county, New 
York, November 19. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is my design for an ornamental carriage 
plate for the side of a wagon body, substantially in the manner herein set forth." 

6. For a Design for Spoon Handle*/; Charles P. Gordon and George B. Gordon, Boston, 
Massachusetts, November 19. 
Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the new and useful ornamental design 
or configuration, substantially as represented in fig. 1, and as herein before described." 

7. For a Design for Stoves,- William B. Gleason, Boston, Massachusetts, assignor to 
James Hartshorn and Winslow Ames, Nashua, New Hampshire, November 26. 
Claim. — "I claim the ornamental design or combination of the star, the fillet, the 
eystcm of rays, the six torus arcs, and two straight connecting toruscs, as disposed essen- 
tially as specified." 

22 American Patents. 

DECEMBER, 1850. 
1. For an Improvement in Machines for Turning Irregular Forms,- Smith Beers, 
Naugatuck, Connecticut, December 3. 

"The general principles of this machine are similar to those of a machine invented in 
1818, and known as the Watcrburg last-making machine, but very differently arranged." 

Claim. — "I do not claim the use of a pattern to govern the action of the cutters, nor 
do I claim the revolving cutters, nor the longitudinal vibration of the machine ; but what 
T do claim as original, is the mode herein described of changing the position of the ratchet 
R by means of the arrangement of the sliding rod, knee lever, lifting plate, and pawl." 

2. For Improvements in Machines for Boring Dovetailed Mortices; Henry J. Betje- 
mann, Cincinnati, Ohio, December 3. 

"The object of my invention is to construct a joint for bedsteads which, without the 
faults of the screw, is equally capable of closely hugging the post as the strain is placed 
upon it. It also admits more readily of the use of a slat foundation, is durable, and 
little subject to injury, and very expeditiously put together or taken asunder." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, are, 1st, the rotating cutters, {g h i k /,) formed and 
arranged substantially as described, with conical heads and cylindrical necks, in combina- 
tion with a rest or movable table, for the reception and attachment of the bed-post; the 
said table, while being advanced toward the cutters, being conducted by suitable guides, 
(jp p' p",) as described, either upon the moving table or the stationary bench, in a course 
which is at first at right angles to the face of the post, and thence, as soon as the cylin- 
drical cutter (/) has begun to act in a longitudinal course, receding sufficiently from the 
lace of the post to form a mortise which shall bind the dovetailed tenons of the rail as 
they are pressed down in their sockets. 

"2d, In combination with the aforesaid guides, the stops, (r,) substantially as here 
arranged and applied, or their equivalents, whereby the table is limited in its course to the 
particular range of cutting action required for the time being." 

3. For Improvements in the Alarm and Indicator for Steam Boilers,- Joseph Dilks, 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 3. 

"My invention consists in attaching to a steam boiler of any of the known forms, a 
sliding valve and seat, worked by a float or ball; the said float rising or falling with the 
rise or fall of the water in the boiler, simultaneously acting upon the whistle and indi- 

Claim. — "I do no not claim to be the inventor of the float, valve, or steam whistle,, 
the same being in common use ; but what I do claim as my invention, is the peculiar 
method of moving the indicator by its attachment to the slide valve of the whistle, by 
which the connexion is continued through the head of the boiler, as herein described, dis- 
pensing with the staffing-box and packing." 

4. For an Improved Arrangement of the Bending Roller in Tin Cutting and Bending 
Machines,- William H. Horton, Newburyport, Massachusetts, December 3. 

'•The object of my improved machine is to reduce a piece of tin plate to a circular form 
and at the same time, if necessary, to bend or turn down the edge of it at a right angle 
with the remainder, and thus to convert the said piece of tin plate into a box cover, or 
other article of similar character." 

( 'him. — "I claim to so combine and arrange the roller, Y, with respect to the jaws, E 
F, (as specified.) as to enable the said roller to be operated in the manner substantially as 
set forth ; that'is to say, to be moved in a plane parallel to the common axis of the shafts, 
C D; the said roller being arranged in a turning frame, Z, and supported by a movable 
and adjusting frame, A' ; and the object of my improvement being to enable a person to 
move the roller against the tin in the manner and for the purpose of bending it down, sub- 
stantially as herein before explained." 

5. For Improvements in the Metallic Flask for Casting large Kettles; William Kelly, 
Eddyville, Kentucky, December 3. 
"My improvement consists in a certain construction of the iron flask in which are cast 

American Patents ivhich issued in December ', 1850. 23 

kettles. Iron moulds are in general use for casting pans and kettles with the flanth up- 
wards. I cast mine with the llanch downwards, and am thereby enabled to drive oli" the 
impurities contained in the iron, in the same manner as they are expelled from the iron in 
a brick mould." 

Claim. — -What I claim as new and of my invention, is the elastic iron core, supporter, 
or inner part of the flask, constructed of wings attached to the crown, and provided with 
covering strips, substantially as described." 

6. For Improvements in Machines for Dressing Spokes,- Gnille Mather, Cincinnati, 
Ohio, December 3. 

"It is aimed in this invention to combine with the dispatch and smoothness of finish of 
the planing action a sufficiently near approach for the purposes of the manufacture of 
spokes to the comprehensive capacities of the pattern turning lathe. This I accomplish 
by so constructing a planing apparatus; consisting of oppositely acting rotating cutters, 
that as the latter approach to or recede from the axis of the stuff, their cutting outline 
may be modified to suit the varying size and form of the work." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is, 1st, constructing a cylindrically rotating cutter 
head, with a separating joint athwart its middle, and in the plane of its rotation, so 
arranged as that by the mutual advance or recession (in the direction of their axis of rota- 
tion) of the respective sections of the cutter heads as they traverse the length of the stuff, 
the cutting edges are adapted to impart the varying outline and form required for the 

"2d, The shafts (9) and weighted levers (v' i J ) in combination with the levers (y" v",~) 
and the links (w iv,) or their equivalents, for sustaining in position the tongues (1 1) upon 
the spoke, and the rollers (r) upon the guides, and rendering the self-adjustable under all 
the circumstances which can effect them." 

7. For an Improved Xail Plate Feeder and Turner,- Melville Otis, East Bridgewater, 
Massachusetts, December 3. 

"The distinguishing characteristics of this machine are, 1st, the application of altering 
instruments to the nipper rod, which by friction turn it, and then leave it until the nail is 
cut off; and, 2d, the application of feeding instruments, which grasp the nipper rod and 
thereby thrust the nail plate between the knives of the nail machine, as above described, 
and when a nail is cut off, release the nipper rod from their grasp while it is turning ; 
and, 3d, the nipper rod, the nippers, and nail plate are put into their places without being 
attached to any other instrument, and consequently nail machines may be more rapidly 
supplied with plates than by any other machine in use for the same purpose." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is, 1st, giving the alternating motion to the 
nipper rod by means of a pair of jaws actuated by the opposite ends of a vibrating beam, 
one of the jaws being provided with a spring and toggle, which causes it to grasp and 
release the nipper rod — the whole operating substantially as described in the annexed 
specification and drawing. 

"2d, I claim giving to the said rod its progressive advancing and slightlv retrograde 
motions, by means of a pair of jaws actuated by a cam and an eccentric, and two springs, 
substantially as specified. 

"3d, I claim operating the follower so that it is raised from the nail plate, and the nail 
plate from the lower cutting jaw of the machine, by means of a cam, a rock shaft, and a 
radius bar connected to one end of the follower, substantially as described. 

"Lastly, I claim transmitting the motion from the nail machine to the feeding machine, 
by means of a lever beam and connecting rods, when the lever beam is hung upon a 
cranked centre, and the actuating connecting rod is provided with knob acting upon a 
flat crank pin, substantially as described in the annexed specification and drawings — 
whereby I am enabled with facility to throw my feeding machinery in and out of gear." 

8. For an Improvement in Horse Rakes,- Harvey W. Sabin, Canandaigua, New York, 
December 3. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention in my improved horse rake, is the device for 
raising the teeth simultaneously to clear them of the hay, and dropping them again, by 
means of the apparatus substantially as described, being worked by the draft of the team 
when thrown into gear, at the will of the operator." 

24 American Patents. 

9. For an Improvement in Suspender Buckles,- Elisha Steele, Waterbury, Connecticut, 
December 3. 

'•The nature of my invention consists in constructing the tongue or point of the 
buckle to act and work as a slide in the inside of the buckle frame, instead of a hinge 
or roller, as in the ordinary buckle, so that upon drawing out the points or tongue and 
attaching the same to the web and applying the strain, the points slide back into the in- 
terior of the buckle, thereby firmly attaching the buckle to the web." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the construction of the buckle frame, and 
attaching the tongue or points thereto, so that the tongue or points slide out and into the 
buckle instead of acting upon a hinge or roller, as above described." 

10. For an Improved Auger Handle,- Augustus Thayer, Maiden Bridge, New York, De- 
cember 3. 
"The advantages of this handle above others now made I consider to be a combina- 
tion of strength and simplicity. The fact that the principal part of the entire handle is 
in one piece from end to end, from a to d strengthened by a band of metal where the 
jfhank socket pierces it, instead of being divided into two parts near the centre, gives it 
great strength, and the operating parts are few, not liable to get out of repair, of common 
material, and cheaply made." 

Claim. — "I claim the construction of auger handles substantially as set forth in the 
above specification ; that is, by making the principal part of the same, from end to end, 
of one piece of wood or material, securing the central portion through which the auger 
shank passes with a metal band, and arranging a detent for holding the shank with ma- 
chinery to operate it as exhibited in the drawings forming part of this specification — the 
said handles being for use with augers, or any other tools to which it may be adapted." 

11. For an Improvement in Vulcanizing India Rubber,- Jonathan T. Trotter, City of 
New York, December 3. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the new and useful manner in which I prepare 
the rubber, by means of an article or preparation of zinc. 

"As a new and useful compound material for curing India rubber, it possesses many 
advantages over all other processes heretofore known or used. It has none of the taint 
nor offensiveness peculiar to sulphur-cured goods, nor the peculiarly objectionable charac- 
teristics of lead-cured goods, on account of their being black, or their liability to become 
so when exposed to the action of sulphuretted gases ; but on the contrary, possesses a 
fine white (or nearly so) color, susceptible of being made up into all kinds of goods, and 
of variegated patterns, and under all circumstances from its almost inodorous flavor." 

Claim. — "What I claim is, the use and employment of zinc prepared by the process 
above described, whereby a hyposulphite or similar preparation of zinc is obtained, in 
combination with India rubber, for the purpose of curing or vulcanizing it, "substantially 
as hereinbefore set forth, without the use of free sulphur in any way, in combination with 
the rubber." 

12. For an Improved Balance Boiler Feeder; William D. Allen, Durhamville, New 
York, December 10. 

"The nature of my improvement consists in having a hollow piston or plunger, divided 
in the centre by a partition forming two compartments or chambers, provided with aper- 
tures transversely through them, for receiving the water from the reservoir of supply, and 
discharging it into the boiler — said piston passing horizontally through the boiler on the 
designed water line, and working through short cylinders placed on opposite sides of the 
boiler, so that the piston shall work steam tight on both sides of the communications 
leading from the reservoir of supply through the cylinders. By this arrangement, i. e., 
having the piston pass completely through the boiler, or separate in two pistons but con- 
nected in the centre of the boiler, and working from opposite sides of the same, I equalize 
the action of the steam in the boiler upon the piston, thereby overcoming a great obstacle 
in the way of a successful application of all self-supplying contrivances heretofore used." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is having the piston B, with compartments and aper- 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 25 

tures as described, passing completely through the boiler, and working in double packing 
boxes in short cylinders, c c, placed on opposite sides of the boiler, substantially as herein 
set forth." 

13. For an Improvement in Buckles fur Harness,- Solon Bingham, Jr., Poestenkill, Xew 
York, December 10. 

"The peculiar advantage of this apparatus is, it avoids the constant wear and tendency 
to crack, occasioned in the use of the buckle by bending stiff leather round its rame, and 
in short turns, when shifting the tongue from hole to hole ; also, the hold of the two studs 
is much stronger and less liable to tear out than is the buckle-tongue, and the lengthening 
or shortening the trace is done with much more ease and promptness than in the ordinary 

Claim. — "I claim the construction of a trace clasp, as a substitute for a buckle for 
fastening together two straps of leather, by the use of a metal tongue fastened to one of 
the straps having projecting from it pins or studs, fitted to enter into holes to be made 
therefor in the other strap, the tongue and strap lying one against and upon or near the 
other; the tongue and strap to be kept in this juxtaposition by a slide or box enclosing 
them — the whole substantially as set forth in this specification.'" 

14. For an Improvement in Bearings for Axles and Shafts,- William H. Hovey, Hart- 
ford, Connecticut, December 10. 

-The nature of my improvement consists in the application to the back end of the box 
of a plate of metal which fits over its sides, and is capable of sliding up or down upon it ; 
on the inner side of this plate is a conical recess, which holds a conical metal packing 
ring, and by means of the bolts which hold the plate to the box, forces the face of the said 
packing ring up to the outside of the box, and causes it to embrace the axle, so that the 
lubricating material in the box is confined therein, and dust, dirt, &c, excluded from the 

Claim. — "I claim the combination of the sliding plate E, having a conical seal a, and 
the conical packing ring F, applied and secured to the journal-box of a car or other axle, 
or of a machine shaft, in the manner substantially as herein described, for the purposes 
set forth." 

15. For an Improvement in Lever Jacks,- James Leffel, Springfield, Ohio, December 10. 

"In my improved jack the power is applied to a lever, which acts upon a toothed sliding 
bar ; the latter, when moved by the lever, is prevented from returning by a spring click 
or pall, which can be connected with or disconnected from the lever at will, to enable the 
operator either to lower the weight, which is supported by the sliding bar, tooth by tooth, 
or to raise it in like manner. 

"It possesses an advantage over all lever jacks hitherto devised in allowing of the 
lowering of the sliding bar, tooth by tooth, without disengaging the click by hand, as its 
lever, when connected with the click, as herein set forth, effects the double purpose of 
lowering the bar and disengaging the click." 

Claim. — "I claim the hanging of the lever by links, which permit the lever teeth to 
disengage themselves from those of the rack bar, with which they are engaged by simply 
raising the lever, and allow them to re-engage with a new set of teeth when the lever is 
depressed, substantially as herein set forth. 

"I also claim the method of connecting the pawl with the lever, in such manner that 
by simply working the latter, the rack bar, with the weight resting thereon, may be low- 
ered, tooth by tooth, substantially as herein set forth." 

16. For an Improvement in Electrotyping; George Mathiot, City of Washington, D. C, 
December 10. 

"It is well known that in copying engraved plates by the electrotype, the deposit is apt 
to adhere so firmly to the original or mould as to resist every attempt to separate them; 
the engraved plate being thereby destroyed. I prevent this destructive adhesion by 
making the plate to be copied chemically clean, and then expose it to the action of a 
halogen clement or compound. And I further expose the plate so acted on to the action 
of a strong light for several hours before introducing it into the electrotyping apparatus." 

Vol. XXL— Third Series.— No. 1.— January, 1851. 3 

26 American Patents. 

Claim. — "I do not claim to cover the face of the plate with heterogoneous matters, as 
air, smoke, wax, oil, &c, for the purpose of preventing adhesion ; but I claim to form a 
heterogeneous substance on the surface of the metallic plate by exposing it to the action 
of iodine, bromine, chlorine, or other chemicals capable of forming an insoluble compound 
with the metal, for the purpose herein set forth. 

"I also claim to expose the metallic plate to the action of light after being acted on by 
a halogen element, substantially for the purpose of preventing the adhesion of the deposit, 
as specified. 

"I claim the use of iodine in the electrotype process, in the manner herein subtantially 
set forth, and for the purpose specified." 

17. For an Imvrovement in Seed Planters,- Samuel Pennock and Morton Pennock, 
Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, December 10. 

"The nature of our improvement consists in making the drill tube of a peculiar form, 
adapting the front for the reception of adjusting and changeable points; having the heel 
open to prevent clogging, and for other purposes ; making the changeable point of a 
peculiar form ; attaching the drill tube to the drag bar, without the use of any kind of 
tool or separate fastening." 

Claim. — "What we claim as new, is the combination with the depositing tube, and 
the bar which connects said tube with the body of the machine, the joint m n, as above 
described — said joint being of such peculiar construction as to be complete and effective 
in itself, without any movable device whatever, and which admits of attaching or detach- 
ing said tube at pleasure, without the use of any kind of implement or tool, or separate 
connecting bolt or fastening, as before described." 

IS. For an Improvement in Seed Planters,- Dexter B. Rhodes, Concord, New York, 
December 10. 

"The nature of my improvement consists, 1st, in having two sliding bottoms to each 
hopper, one of whicli measures the quantity of seed, and the other discharges it into the 
hills ; also, in having one side of each hopper, through which the under bottom slides, 
adjustable, so as to regulate the capacity of the seed cell. 2d, In having the hoppers 
attached to, or setting in adjustable frames, which slide laterally on the top of the carriage 
frame, for the purpose of regulating the distance between the hills as hereafter more fully 

Claim — "What I claim as new, is the upper and lower sliding bottoms, n n and //, in 
combination with the adjustable side of the hoppers r r, operating in the manner and for 
the purpose substantially as herein described." 

19. For Improvements in Sewing Machines,- Frederick R. Robinson, Boston, Massa- 
chusetts, December 10. 

"The object of my invention is to produce either what is generally termed stich and 
back-stitch sewing, or ordinary stitching. By "ordinary stitch and back-stitch" sewing I 
mean that in which a thread, after being carried through a piece of cloth, from its front 
to its rear side, is moved backwards the width of the stitch, is next again carried through 
from the rear side to the front side of the cloth, is next carried forwards laterally double 
the width of the stitch, or some other suitable distance greater than the width of the 
stitch, and is next passed through the cloth from its front side to its rear side; such opera- 
tion being successively repeated in the formation of the stitches. By 'ordinary stitch- 
ing' I mean that in 'which a thread is passed through the cloth from its front side to its 
rear side, is next moved forwards the width of the stitch, is carried backwards through, 
the cloth from its rear side to its front side, is next carried forwards the width of the 
stitch, and is again passed through the cloth from its front side to its rear side, and so 
on. This is frequently called the running or basting stitch." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of two needles, two 
thread guides, and a cloth holder, made to operate together, substantially in the manner 
and for the purpose as herein before set forth. 

"And I also claim the improvement of making the needles with springs, and applying 
moulh pieces or pressors to them, and on each side of the flanch of the base plate, the 
whole being substantially as above described." 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 27 

20. For Improvements in the Manufacture of two and three ply Carpets; Alexander 
Smith, West Farms, New York, December 10. 

"My invention consists in weaving two and three ply ingrain carpets by the combina- 
tion of parti-colored warp and weft, arranged so as to cause the warp and weft to unite in 
forming the same color in the figure as produced by the jacquard or any other mechanical 
means by which any variety of colors or shades on one or more plies that may be desired 
may be produced in the same range, in the direction both of the warp and the weft, the 
figure being formed by throwing down the weft, which obviates any difficulties arising from 
imperfections in the parti-coloring of the yarn." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention in the weaving of two or three ply ingrain 
carpets, is the employment of parti-colored warp and weft, operated by the jacquard or 
other mechanical means to form the figure, when the same colors in the warp and in the 
weft are caused to combine together to form the same colored figure in the fabric, sub- 
stantial! v as described. 

21. For an Apparatus attached to Vessels for Indicating the Depth of Water; Henry 
B. Sommers, Ithica, New York, December 10. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of a sounding chain or 
jointed rod with an indicator on the deck of a vessel, operated by means of a cord, pulley, 
or other equivalents, so as to indicate the depth of water whilst the boat is making head- 
way, as herein described and represented." 

22. For an Improvement in Planing Machines,- Daniel H. Southworth, City of New 
York, December 10. 

"My invention mainly consists in so attaching a narrow circular saw-blade to a strong, 
firm, and steady cast or wrought iron planing wheel, to contain planing cutters, that the 
saw may be stiffened and rendered free from trembling, shaking, or running in, and made 
to cut in advance of the planing cutters, to level and cleanse the surface of the plank or 
timber, so that the planing cutters may with facility produce an extra smooth surface; and 
in clearing cutters being so arranged and adjusted as to immediately follow the saw, being 
attached to the wheel, near the periphery, on the rear or slab side thereof, and cut and 
clear away any timber or slab which may be left to pass back of the saw and on the rear 
or slab side of the same and of the wheel." 

Claim. — "I do not claim as any part of my invention a planing wheel, or planing or 
clearing cutters ; nor do I claim the combining of a circular saw with a planing wheel, 
by uniting two circular saw plates, and attaching planing knives thereto, as these have 
been known and used before ; but what I do claim as my inventiou, are the following new 
<and useful improvements by way of new attachments and combinations. 

"1st, The attachment, cither whole or in segments, of a narrow circular saw-blade to 
the front of the periphery of an iron or other metallic planing wheel, (properly counter 
sunk, for the purpose,) in combination with the clearing and planing cutters, so that the 
saw shall be stiU'ened and rendered free from trembling, shaking, or running in, and made 
to cu.t in advance of the planing cutters to cleanse and level the surface of the plank or 
timber, that the planing cutters may with facility produce an extra smooth surface, and 
be cleared of timber or slab by the clearing cutters, as set forth ; — the attachment of the 
saw-blade to the wheel being such, by screws or otherwise, that the saw-blade may be 
easily removed or taken oft*, lor the purpose of turning the reverse face to the plank or 
timber, whenever the teeth on one side have become worn, dulled, or out of set from long 
usage against the timber. 

"2d, The clearing cutters n n n, in combination with the saw and planing wheels, 
arranged in the manner and for the puqwses herein set forth, the whole being arranged in 
the manner and for the purposes herein set forth and described." 

23. For an Improvement in Elevating, Cooling, and Conveying Flour,- Jesse White 
and Jonathan Bundy, Barncsville, Ohio, December 10. 
"Our invention consists in effecting any one or all the operations of elevating, convey- 
ing, and cleaning grain, and of elevating, conveying, and cooling flbur and meal, by 
means of a current of air produced artificially, with sufficient velocity to carry the grain 
or flour along with it through the tube, or other channel through which it is forced." 

28 American Patents. 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the method of elevating, conveying, and 
cooling flour or meal by passing it, by means of a blast, through an air trunk and head, 
constructed substantially as herein set forth." 

24. For Improvements in Machines for Making Pill Boxes,- Nelson D. White, Win- 
chendon, Massachusetts, December 10. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the contrivance for supporting the stick, 
and feeding each stick forward towards the cutters, the same consisting of the saddle and 
orifice, (applied to the rotary block holder,) the endless screw D, the shaft E, the spring 
G, the bearing plate g, fixed to the shaft B, the pinion H, and the stationary gear wheel 
I — the whole being applied and made to operate together, substantially in the manner as 
above set forth. 

"I do not claim the employment of a circular saw for the purpose of separating por- 
tions of the sticks; but what I claim as my invention or improvement, is the combination 
of said saw with the rotating series of sticks, or their rotating holding frame, substantially 
in the manner and so that they shall be successively operated upon by it as specified." 

25. For an Improved Cut-off Motion for Puppet Valves,- Samuel H. Gilman, Cincin- 
nati, Ohio, December 10. 

"The nature of my invention consists in a provision for cutting off, at any desired 
point, the supply of steam to the cylinder when drop valves are used, by making the 
lifters vibratable upon the rock shaft, and causing them to act in obedience to the motions 
ol gravitating toggles, which being trippled by impact with an adjustable stop, allow the 
lifter to rotate upon the shaft, and the valve to descend. 

"This invention is shown as applied to the supply valve of an oscillating engine, the 
steam chest of which is upon the trunnion sides, the trunnion making part of the supply 
passage, and being cast in one piece with the front of the steam chest." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is, 1st, raising and dropping at any desired point the 
puppet valves that admit steam to the cylinder, by means of a lifter that vibrates with 
and upon the usual rock shaft, the said lifter being operated by a gravitating and coun- 
ter-balancing toggle, as described, so that the lifter, in the manner described, or its equiva- 
lent, is fixed for raising the valve, and is depressed and allowed gradually and easily to 
drop the valve when the counter-balance of the toggle is operated by the adjustable stop, 
substantially as herein described." 

26. For an Improvement in Seed Planters,- John Signer and Thomas N. Shipton, 
Kishacoquillas Valley, Pennsylvania, December 10. 

Claim. — "What we claim as new and of our own invention, is dividing the drill teeth 
or depositing tubes into two separate sections G H, and hinging or connecting the two 
sections at their upper ends, in such a manner as to permit the longest or rear section 
H, to recede or turn on its connecting pins, (a,) while the upper or short section retains 
its proper position in relation to the drag bar and flexible conducting tube, and providing 
the upper or short section G with two arms, J J, having notches therein, which, when the 
two sections of the drill tooth are closed, becomes coincident with a notch formed in an 
arm, K, projecting from the rear or longest section H, into which is insorted a wooden 
pin, which it is intended shall break when the rear or longest section of the drill tooth 
shall strike against a rock or other obstruction and thus separate the sections, and permit 
the longest section H, to recede and clear itself from the obstruction, whilst the flexible 
conducting tube is held in its proper position by an oval loop on the inside of the section 
G, as herein fully set forth and represented. 

"2d, We also claim providing the clutch plate R, with an additional row of teeth (A) 
adjacent to the side beam of the frame for engaging with a tooth, T, projecting therefrom, 
for arresting the motion of the seeding rollers simultaneously with unlocking the axle 
from the propelling wheel, and thus stop the operation of the machine, as fully set 


Remarks Suggested by an Examination of the Recent Statistics of the 
Cotton Manufacture in Great Britain. By Mr. G. R. Porter.* 

The fear of being dependent upon foreign countries for the supply of 
any article of first necessity has often influenced the mind of the public, 
although the cases can be but very few in which that fear can have any 
just foundation. It must be evident, upon the slightest reflection, that if 
the industry and capital of any country have been applied to the production 
of any article, the market for which is habitually found in some other 
country, it must be at least as disastrous for the producing country to be 
deprived of its market as it could possibly be for the consuming country 
to have its supplies cut off. In point of fact, both countries would neces- 
sarily be placed by the interruption in the same condition of distress, since, 
to be in a condition to deal together, both must be producing and both 
consuming countries. There are circumstances, however, under which it 
might be unwise for a country to be willingly dependent upon another for 
the means of setting its industry in motion, viz., when the causes of the 
interruption that will operate injuriously are beyond the control of the 
country of supply; and such a case actually exists in respect of the, to us, 
all-important article, cotton. Our supply of cotton has hitherto been drawn 
in very fluctuating proportions from British India, Brazil, Egypt, our West 
India Colonies, and the United States of America. From this last-named 
country the quantities were for a long series of years in a continual con- 
dition of increase. From Brazil our importations have sensibly lessened 
without any reasonable prospect of future increase. From Egypt the quan- 
tities fluctuate violently, and depend greatly upon causes not falling with- 
in ordinary commercial considerations. In the British West Indies the 
cultivation of cotton has for some time ceased to form a regular branch of 
industry, and it is hardly to be expected that having thus ceased to be 
profitable when prices in Europe were uniformly at a higher level than 
they have been for now a long series of years, the cultivation of cotton to 
any important extent will be resumed in these colonies. From British 
India the quantities received depend upon a different set of circumstances, 
but of such a nature as to forbid any very sanguine hope of great and 
permanent increase in the shipments. To those who reflect seriously upon 
these facts, it must appear a matter of grave importance how any con- 
tinued failure of cotton crops is to be met; and not only so, but also, how 
a substitute is to be found for the hitherto constantly increasing amount of 
those crops; for it will not be enough to provide the same amount of employ- 
ment as before for our continually growing numbers in a branch of industry 
which, by its ordinary operations, necessarly brings forward those increased 
numbers. The uneasiness which it is natural to feel under the circum- 
stances here described, has led to the inquiry, as diligently and as carefully 
as opportunity has allowed, whether some substitute or auxiliary may not 
be called into action which shall meet the evil that threatens us; and this, 
* From the London Athensrum, August, 1850. 

30 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

it is suggested, may be found in a kindred branch of manufacture — that of 
flax. A very few years ago, when first anxietybegan to arise concerning 
the prospects of our cotton manufacture, the resource which has just been 
named did not present itself. At that time, our linen manufacture had not 
made the progress by which it is at present marked — a progress propor- 
tionally equal to any that has been made at any time in the cotton manu- 
facture. Hitherto we have, in this kingdom, been greatly dependent 
upon our foreign importations for supplies of flax; and while the law im- 
posed restrictions upon the importation of grain for human food, there 
existed a kind of moral impediment in the way of increasing our home 
growth of articles for any purpose not of equal primary necessity. That 
impediment is now removed; and there can be no reason given why our 
fields should not be henceforth used for the production of any article that 
promises an adequate profit to the farmer. Jt is especially desirable so 
to apply the productive power of the soil for the supply of articles as in- 
dispensable to the support of millions of people as corn itself; and an 
additional inducement to the growth of flax beyond that offered by other 
articles, maybe found in the fact that to bring it to the same condition as 
that in which it is usually imported from foreign countries, calls for the 
employment of a considerable amount of human labour. There is no part 
of the United Kingdom in which the flax plant cannot successfully be 
cultivated; and there is hardly any country where it might not be brought 
to supply our deficiencies, should such arise. It should not in any degree 
interfere with the prosperity of the present race of cotton manufacturers 
if flax were to be substituted in part for the material now employed by 
them. Some changes are doubtless necessary in order to adapt their 
present machinery for the spinning of flax, but not to any important extent; 
and the expense to which the proprietors might thus be subjected would 
be well compensated during the first year of short supply of cotton that 
might arise, by the security that they would feel in the future regularity 
of their operations; assured as they then would be against the irregularity 
of seasons, or those disturbances which have arisen, and which always 
may arise, to disarrange their operations and to interfere with the regular 
employment of their hands. It would not appear difficult so to order the 
arrangements of a spinning-wheel or a weaving shed that both flax and 
cotton might be included within its operations, and that the preponder- 
ance in those operations might be giving from time to time either to the 
one or to the other, according to the capabilities of the markets of supply 
on the one hand, and the requirements of the markets of consumption on 
the other. 

The Present System of Steamboat Inspection — Explosion of the Boiler of 
the "Queen" Steamer.* 

On Wednesday, July 10th, a fatal explosion occurred at Devonport, 
on board the steamer, Queen, the boiler of which burst just as she was 
coming from her night moorings to the Quay, for the purpose of taking 
on board a large party who, in a few moments more, would have been 
all on board. 

* From the London Artizan, for November, 1850. 

The Present System of Steamboat Inspection. 31 

Upon an examination of the boiler, immediately afterwards, it was 
found to have been driven forward about 2 feet from its former position, 
and the back plates had been entirely removed; and so great had been 
the amount of force exerted on it that it was completely torn off, the line 
of separation being through the centre of the angle iron which connected 
the sides, bottom, and top of the boiler to the back, which had now been 
blown overboard. The area of the open end was found on measurement 
to be about 40 square feet, or about 8 feet by 5 feet. The tubes, which 
were of iron, and about 2^ inches diameter, were covered with a slight 
incrustation, or scale, and on examining the top ones, no indication of 
their being left dry for want of water was to be found, as there was no 
sign of recent oxidation, and the scale was adhering to the top of them 
as firmly as on any of the surrounding parts of the boiler. On the back of 
the fire-box, between which and the back there had been a water space 
of between 4 and 5 inches, were two angle iron stays of about 3 inches 
wide, and 12 inches long, fastened to the plates with f inch rivets, with 
three holes f inch diameter, to connect with similar pieces riveted to the 
back of the boiler, by means of cotter pins, each overlapping the other; 
one of the stays was split through these pin holes from top to bottom, and 
on the fractured surface there was an amount of incrustation about equal 
to that on the surrounding parts, indicating that the stay had been in that 
state for some considerable time, and of course was of no use as a stay; the 
other stay, situated in a similar position on the back of the fire-box, was 
of the same general dimensions, but entire, with two of the three connect- 
ing pins in their places; clearly showing that its fellow stay connected to 
the missing back must be split also, which, upon subsequent examina- 
tion, was found to be the case, and which also, from the amount of scale 
on the fractured surface, proved that it had been long useless. The dis- 
tance horizontally between the two stays was about 28 inches; there were 
no stays to the bottom of the boiler, to connect it with any other portion. 
There were six diagonal stays of about 1\ inches round iron, connecting 
the bottom of the steam-chest with the sides of the boiler, which merely 
prevented the angle at the top of the sides being distorted by the upward 
and lateral pressures, the bottom and back being unsupported at the time. 
We should suppose that the first part to give away under these circum- 
stances would be the junction of the bottom and back, in the centre of 
their length, as the two forces acting downward and backward would 
resolve themselves into one great force on that particular spot; and so it 
evidently had been, for the middle of the back edge of the boiler bottom 
was bent down about 3 or 4 inches, leaving two legs of flat iron which 
had been fastened to the bottom of the fire-box for support, about that 
much clear of the bottom of the boiler, and the bottom edge of the back 
part, when found at low water, was bent backward in the middle in a 
similar manner, and presented every indication of having been the first 
point to give way. 

Upon a subsequent examination of the safety valve, it was found that 
there w r as insufficient space for the escape of steam from it, by the box above 
the valve being nearly filled with the lead weight on the spindle, the area of 
which space was only about \ the area of the valve itself. There was no- 
thing which indicated a sticking of the valve at the time of the explosion. 

32 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

In addition to the weight on the spindle in the valve-box, there was a 
lever resting on the top of the spindle outside, with a shifting weight on 
it; this lever was accessible to the engineer, and by it he could vary his 
pressure to the extent of some 4 or 5 pounds per square inch on the valve. 
Upon weighing the weights, valve, lever, &c, it was found that the whole 
weight on the valve was about 253 lbs; area of valve 15 inches; which 
would give as a maximum pressure as follows: 

Whole weight, •• = 253 lbs. 

= 16} | lbs. per square inch. 

Area of safety valve, = 15 ins. 
But at the time of the explosion the weight on the lever was not at its 
maximum, but giving a pressure of 15-15 lbs. per square inch, and it 
appears in the evidence before the coroner, that the person in charge of 
the engines at the time was on deck about three minutes before the ex- 
plosion, and the steam was not quite up. This would lead us to suppose 
that the back of the boiler was in a very weakened state, produced by 
the continual warping or bulging out and in, as the steam might be up or 
down, until it had destroyed, to a very serious extent, the cohesive power 
of the angle iron, and that power had become less than was necessary to 
withstand the force of the accumulated pressure of the steam. The back 
of the boiler being at the time unsupported by stays, which, on account 
of their mal-construction, had long before been rendered useless, was from 
its shape the weakest part, and gave way accordingly. 

There appears to have been a very lamentable amount of ignorance, or 
negligence, perhaps both, displayed in this affair. Ignorance on the part 
of the designer or constructor of the boiler, clearly shown in the character 
and extent of the stays; and negligence on the part of the inspector, who 
had inspected and given a certificate, only 30 days prior to the occurence, 
although, as shown on the inquest, he knew there was no mercury in the 
steam guage; or on the part of the proprietors, or persons in charge of the 
engines and boiler. One or more of three parties are highly culpable. 
But since the passing of the Act 9th and 10th Vict., legal responsibility i.s 
removed from the shoulders of steam-boat proprietors, as long as they get 
their boats and engines legally inspected at the appointed times, and it is 
hardly to be expected that persons who are not thoroughly acquanted with 
the internal structure and general principles of steam engines and boilers, 
will think there is anything materially wrong so soon after the inspection, 
especially in this case, where the boiler was only thirteen months old. 

We must be allowed to think that the extent of the inspection is too 
limited. The inspector should not only examine the general structure of 
the engines and boiler, but he should also be empowered to try in his 
balance the capabilities of the person in charge, and search him as to his 
knowledge of the machine he professes to be master of. We hesitate not 
to say, that in many instances we have found persons in charge of marine 
and other engines who are not fit for the positions they fill. But when 
we say that those persons should undergo the examination of .the inspector, 
we mean of course that the inspector shall be a person who understands 
his business thoroughly, — a man acquainted with the practical working of 
steam machinery; and when he makes an official inspection of engines or 

The Present System of Steamboat Inspection. 33 

their boilers he shall personally examine such portions as are likely, by 
failure, to jeopardize human life; or if not personally, his proxy shall be 
accountable for the truth or genuineness of his report. 

There is an important fact connected with this affair; for, says the 
Mining Journal, " The maker of the boiler was the government inspector, 
and in giving his evidence, [at the inquest, we presume,) he manifests a de- 
gree of subserviency to the opinions of the owners, which is too likely to 
exist when the interest of the employer is submitted to the tribunal of t/ie 
judgment of the employed.'''' And from the evidence of Mr. Simpson, "it 
appears that it was not usual for the inspectors to make an internal exami- 
nation of the boilers." If this be the truth, what guarantee have the public 
against a repetition of such calamitous results, and to what an extent may 
we not suffer from this fact? Before the passing of the 9th and 10th Vict, 
steam-boat proprietors were in the habit of employing some one capable 
of making an examination of the state of their machinery, and of reporting 
thereon; especially if it were supposed that things were not right, or as 
they should be; but now, as before stated, the responsibility is taken from 
their shoulders, and a legal inspection, followed by a certificate, is reck- 
oned a sufficient security against immediate danger. But the case of the 
Queen proves that, however good the provision may be, taken on its 
merits, the working in detail is not in a healthy state. For here was a 
boiler which was inspected, and certified to be in a safe condition and 
good working order, whilst it is proved that such was not the case, and 
it is known that that part of the boiler which gave way was not examined. 
Indeed, were those very stays in as perfect a state as good materials could 
make them, the boiler was not a safe one; for, in the first place, there 
were not a sufficient number of stays, there being none in the boiler bot- 
tom to stay it to any other portion, neither were there any to the top of 
the furnaces, or across the boiler, and the only two stays on the back, al- 
though of a flat form and very extensive area, were made of angle iron, 
and so fixed as to present but little resistance in the direction of the force 
exerted on them with the steam up. The only mystery is that the acci- 
dent did not happen sooner; only the very best of materials could have 
prevented it. 

We hear that the boiler is now in the hands of her original maker for 
thorough repair, and will now have plenty of stays of the proper shape, upon 
the principle, that if two are not enough, four may be. 

These facts, added to some other similar accidents that have occurred 
lately, seem to indicate that the system of the inspection of steam machinery 
is not so efficient as it ought to be, and that some change in its enactments 
is needed. A most important point, and one that has been most strangely 
overlooked by the legislature, is the obtaining the services of engineers, 
whose business engagements are not likely to interfere with their duties 
as inspectors. Under the present system a foreman or manager may be 
called upon to inspect a boiler made by his employers; or, what is scarcely 
less objectionable, by some competing firm. No honest man would wish 
to be placed in such a position, whilst, at the same time, it unfortunately 
happens that there are but few competent practical engineers to whom 
the objection does not apply. This may arise from the low scale of fees 
payable to the inspector, which render some other source of income ne- 

34 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

cessary, in all but one or two of the largest ports. The only way in which 
this difficulty could be overcome, would be to diminish the number of 
inspectors, and unite several ports under one supervision. This would 
have the effect of raising the remuneration and position of the inspector, 
and of rendering him independent of patronage. Our experience does 
not lead us to anticipate that any step will be taken in the matter, until the 
public have been startled by some very glaring case, when we may probably 
have to report on the grand discovery that will then be made of the ineffi- 
ciency of the present system. 

We should add that at the time of the explosion one of the stokers was 
killed, another man had his leg broken, and a third, who was the engineer 
and part-owner, was so severely scalded that he died, after lingering about 
three weeks. 

Telegraphs in Germany. 

Within the last four months, through the activity of the minister of 
trade, no less than 1000 miles of telegraph have been opened in Austria, 
making the total mileage about 2000, of which about one-quarter has 
the wires laid underground on the improved system. Another 1000 
miles will be ready by next year. The telegraph now works from Cracow 
to Trieste, 700 miles. On the 1st October the new telegraph union be- 
tween Austria, Prussia, Saxony, and Bavaria comes into operation under 
a uniform tariff, which is one-half of the former charges. The progress 
will be looked upon with interest by the commercial public here, who 
are very much in want of facilities corresponding to those enjoyed in the 
United States, and at the same charges. 

Translated for the Journal of the Franklin Institute, 

Journal of Vie JEronauiic Ascension o/MM. Barral and Bixio, made at 
Paris 21th July, 1850. 

This excursion of MM. Barral and Bixio must not be confounded with 
the ordinary balloon ascensions for the purpose of making the public 
stare, and gaining money, but was an excursion undertaken by two hardy 
natural philosoohers, for the purpose of solving experimentally certain 
atmospheric problems, as yet undetermined. Their first excursion, under- 
taken under the most unfavorable circumstances, was a failure ; the 
second, the journal of which we give below from the proceedings of the 
Academy of Sciences of Paris, was more successful, although the 
travelers did not get up as high as they wished ; and we understand that 
they are now busily engaged in preparing a third, for which we hope and 
expect a still more entire success. The following is the report by them 
to the Academy : 

"The principal questions upon which our attention was to be fixed 
during our second atrial journey, were the following: 
* From the London Mining Journal, No. 787. 

Journal of an JEronautic Ascension. 35 

"1st, The law of decrease of atmospheric temperature with the 

"2d, The influence of the solar radiation in the different regions of the 
atmosphere, deduced from observations made upon thermometers whose 
reservoirs were endowed with very different absorbing powers. 

"3d, The determination of the hygrometric state of the air in the 
various atmospheric strata, and the comparison of the indications of the 
psychrometer with the dew point at very low temperatures; 

"4th, Analysis of the atmospheric air at different heights; 

"5th, Determination of the quantity of carbonic acid contained in the 
high regions of the atmosphere; 

"6th, Examination of the polarization of light by the clouds; 

"7th, Observation of the various optical phenomena produced by the 

"The apparatus placed at our disposal were : 

"1st, Two syphon barometers, graduated on the glass, whose upper 
meniscus we were to observe; the position of the lower meniscus being 
given by a table constructed from direct observations made in the labora- 
tory. Each of these barometers is provided with a thermometer divided 
into centesimal degrees. 

"2d, Three thermometers, with arbitrary scales fixed at a distance of 
5 centimetres (2 inches) from a metallic plate. The reservoir of the first 
of these thermometers has a surface of glass; the surface of the second 
is coated with lamp-black, and that of the third is covered by a cylin- 
der of polished silver, which also envelopes a part of the stem. The reser- 
voirs are cylinders, narrow but very long. Immediately below the 
reservoirs the metallic plate, carries a silvered plate very highly polished. 
The plate, with its thermometers, is placed horizontally on one of the 
sides of the car, so as to remain constantly exposed to the solar radia- 

"3d, A vertical thermometer, with an arbitrary scale, whose cylindri- 
cal reservoir is placed in the axis of several concentric envelopes of 
highly polished tinned iron, open below to permit the circulation of air. 
This disposition was arranged to obtain, at least approximately, the tem- 
perature which a thermometer in the shade would give. 

"4th, A psychrometer formed by two thermometers, with arbitrary 

"5th, A condensing hydrometer on M. Regnault's plan. 

"6th, Tubes with caustic potassa, and pumice soaked with sulphuric 
acid, for the determination of the carbonic acid of the air. The aspira- 
tion of the air was to be produced by a pump of a capacity of 1 litre, 
and exactly guaged. 

"7th, Two glass globes of 1 litre capacity, provided with steel stop- 
cocks, and intended to collect the air in the high regions. These globes, 
which were placed in tin cases, had been carefully exhausted of air 
before our departure. 

"8th, A Walferdin minimum thermometer. This thermometer, 
graduated by M. Walferdin, is enclosed in a tin cylinder, pierced with 
holes. At our request, this apparatus was placed under seal. 

"9th, An apparatus furnished by M. Regnault, and intended to indi- 

36 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

cate the maximum elevation which the balloon had reached. This ap- 
paratus was enclosed in a tin case pierced with a great number of holes. 
The cover of the case was also sealed. 

"10 h, An Arago Polariscope. 

"The instruments with scales were made by M. Fastre, under the 
direction of M. Regnault. The tables for the graduation were calcula- 
ted in the laboratory of the College of France, and were known to M. 
Regnault alone. 

"The balloon is that of M. Dupuis-Velcourt, which had served for our 
first ascension, but the lower orifice terminates in a cylindrical tube of 
silk of 7 metres (22-96 feet) in length, which remained open to allow 
the gas to escape freely during the ascent. The car was hung about 4 
metres (13*12 feet) below the orifice of the silk tube. The instruments 
were hung around a large ring of sheet iron, which was attached to the 
usual wooden hoop which carries the cords of the car. The form of this 
ring is such that the instruments were placed at the proper distance from 
the observers. 

"The plan was to ascend about 10 o'clock, A. M.; all the arrange- 
ments were taken to have the filling of the balloon begun at 6 o'clock. 
This operation was confided to MM. Veron and Fontaine. 

"Unfortunately, circumstances beyond our control caused injurious 
delays, and the balloon was not ready until 1 o'clock. The sky, which 
until noon had been very clear, was covered with clouds, and very soon 
rain fell in torrents on Paris. The rain did not cease until 3 o'clock. 
The day was too far advanced, and the atmospheric circumstances were 
too unfavorable for us to hope to fulfil the proposed programme. But 
the aerostat was ready, great expenses had been incurred, and observa- 
tions in such a disturbed atmosphere might lead to useful results. Our 
departure took plack at 4 o'clock; it presented some difficulties in conse- 
quence of the very limited space which the garden of the observatory 
afforded for the operation. 

"One of the barometers was broken and left behind. The same acci- 
dent happened to the thermometer with blackened bulb. 

"We here transcribe the notes which we took during our ascent: 

"4h. 3m. Departure. The balloon rises at first very slowly, moving 
towards the east; after throwing out several kilogrammes of ballast, it 
takes a more rapid ascensional movement. The sky is completely 
covered with clouds, and we soon find ourselves in a light haze. 

"4h. 6m. Barometer 694-70 mm. attached thermometer-]- 16° C. Height=?57 metres. 
"4h.8m. " 674-96 " " 16 " 999 

"4h. 9m. 30scc. " 655-57 " " 13 " 1244 

"4h. 11m. " 636-68 " " 9-8 " 1483* 

*A11 the barometric heights given have heen reduced to the temperature 0° hy calcula- 
tion. By means of the barometric and thcrmometric. observations made at the observatory 
and in the car, the heights of 19 stations above the observatory, and above the sea by 
adding 65 metres to them, were calculated. But the three heights, 6512, 7016, and 6765 
metres, where the temperature had fallen to — 35° and — 39° were obtained by comparison, 
not with the observatory, but with the intermediate station, 5902 metres, where the tempera- 
ture was — 9-8°, and the pressure 367-04mm. We thus find 7004 metres for the highest 
station. But there must still be added a correction of 12 metres due to the height, 5902 
metres, of the lower station compared, which makes in all 7016 metres, (23018-33 feet, or 
4-36 miles). This is exactly the height reached by Gay-Lussac and Biot. 

Journal of an JEronautic Ascension. 37 

"Above us a continuous mass of clouds; below us, detached clouds, 
which seem to roll towards Paris. We feel a fresh breeze. 

"4h. 13m. Barometer 597-73 mm. attached thermometer-}- 9-° C. Height 2013 metres. 
"4h. 15m. " 558-70 " " 9- " 2567 

«4h.20m. " 482-20 " " —0-5 « 3751 

"The cloud into which we are penetrating presents the appearance of 
a common very thick fog : we no longer see the earth. 

"Barometer 405-41 mm. attached thermometer — 7°. Height 5121 metres. 

"Some rays of the sun become perceptible through the clouds. 

"The barometer oscillates between 366-99 and 386-42; the thermome- 
ter — 9°; height from 5911 to 5492 metres. 

"The balloon is completely distended; the tube appended, which up 
to this time had remained flattened under the pressure of the atmosphere, 
is now distended, and the gas escapes by its lower orifice, as a whitish 
streak; we perceive its odor very distinctly. A tear is found in the 
balloon at the distance of 1-5 metres from the origin of the tube. A 
clearer space shows itself, and allows the position of the sun to be vaguely 

"After ap-ain throwing: over some ballast, the balloon resumes its 

"4h. 25m. Barometer oscillates from 347-75 mm. to 367-04; thermometer — 10-°5 to — 98-°; 
Height 6330 —5902 metres. 

"The mist, much less intense, allows a white and feeble image of the 
sun to be seen. Barometer oscillating. We are covered with little 
icicles in extremely fine needles, which collect in the folds of our clothes. 
During the descending period of the barometric oscillation, that is, during 
Ihe ascending motion of the balloon, the note-book opened before us 
receives them so that they appear to fall upon it with a kind of crepitation. 
Nothing similar shows itself during the ascending period of the barome- 
ter, that is during the descent of the aerostat. 

"The horizontal thermometer with glass bulb gives — 4-°69. 
" " " silvered" " — 8-°95. 

"We see distinctly the disk of the sun through the frozen fog, but 
at the same time, in the same vertical plane , we see a second image of the. 
sun nearly as intense as the first; the two images appear symmetrically 
placed above and below the horizontal plane of the car, each malring an 
angle of about 30° with this plane. This phenomenon was seen for more 
than 10 minutes. 

"The temperature falls very rapidly; we attempt to make a complete 
series of observations upon the thermometer for radiation, and on the 
thermometers of the psychrometer, but the mercurial columns are hidden 
by the corks, because so sudden a fall of the temperature had not been 
foreseen. The thermometer with the coverings of tin plate gives 
— 23-°79. 

"4h. 32m. The clouds separate above us, and we see a place in the 
sky of a light azure blue, like that which on a clear day is seen from the 
earth. The polariscope shows no polarization in any direction on the 
clouds, in contact with us, or farther off. The sky-blue is, on the con- 

Vot. XXI. — Tbikd Skuib9. — No. 1. — Jaxuart, 1851. 4 

38 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

trary, strongly polarized. Barometer oscillates. Ballast thrown out, 
by which a new ascending movement is obtained. 

"4h. 45m. Barometer 338-05 mm. attached thermometer — 35°. Height=6512 metres. 

"Our fingers are stiffened with the cold, but we experience no pain in 
the ears, and the respiration is not at all obstructed. The sky is again 
covered with clouds, but the clouded sun and its image are still visible. 
We throw out ballast, which gives a new ascent. 

"4h. 50m. Barometer 315-02. The extremity of the attached ther- 
mometer is about 2° below the lowest division traced on the instrument. 
This division is — 37°; the temperature was then about — 39°; height 
7016 metres. 

"The barometer oscillates from 315*02 to 326-20; thus the eerostat 
oscillates from 7016 to 6765 metres. We have but 4 kilogrammes of 
ballast left, which we deem prudent to keep for our descent. We hoped 
to keep ourselves for some time at this height, but although the silk tube 
was raised up to avoid the exit of gas from its orifice, the balloon begins 
its descent. We take the air for examination. The tube of one of the 
globes is broken by the efforts made by us to turn the stop-cock. The 
second is filled with air without accident. 

'•5h. 2m. Barometer 436-4; temperature — 9°. Height 4502 metres. 

"We again meet the little needles of ice. 

"5h. 07m. Barometer 483-1 G. temperature — 7°. Height 3688 metres. 
"5h. 10m. " 540-39. " —3°. " 2796 

"5h. 12m. " 559-70. " —1°. " 2452 

"5h. 14m. " 582-90. " 0°. " 2185 

"5h. 16m. " 598-5 to 618 " +l-°8 "1973 to 1707 

"These oscillations were produced by the last portions of our ballast 
which we threw out. We think of nothing but moderating our descent* 
by sacrificing every thing disposable except the instruments, and we put 
the thermometers in their cases. 

"5h. 30m. Reached the earth, at the hamlet des Peux; commune 
de Saint Denis-les-Rebais; arrondissement de Coulommiers, (Seine et 
Marne,) a short distance from the residence of M. Brulfert, the Mayor of 
this commune, situated 70 kilometres (43^ miles) from Paris. We were 
so fortunate as not to break any of the instruments in the descent. We 
found at the village nothing but a cart to carry us to the nearest station 
of the Strasburg railroad, which is 18 kilometres (11-18 miles) distant. 
The journey was a severe one over the cross-roads; the horse fell. Two of 
the pieces of apparatus which we were the most desirous of bringing back 
to Paris unhurt were broken, or rendered valueless; the globe of air, 
and the instrument which indicated the minimum barometric pressure. 
Happily the minimum thermometer of M. Walferdin was brought back 
with its seal unhurt, to the College of France. 

"The seal was removed by MM. Regnault and W T alferdin, and the 
minimum temperature, determined by direct experiments, was found 
— 39-67, consequently differing very little from the lowest temperature 
which we ourselves had observed on the thermometer attached to the 

"At the request of M. Regnault, MM. Person at Besancon; de Breaute 

TJier mo- Electric Power of Bismuth and Antimony. 39 

at Dieppe; Bertin at Strasburg; Hceghens at Versailles; Monod at Orleans; 
Renou at Vendome; Malaguti at Rennes; Girardin and Bouton at Rouen; 
and Isidore Pierre at Caen, made, during the 26th and 27th July, baro- 
metric and thermometric observations every quarter of an hour." 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Steam on the Upper Danube. 

In some high pressure steamers, recently fitted out at Munich, by Mr. 
Joseph Hall, for boats navigating the Upper Danube, there is an arrange- 
ment which may be considered an improvement, and which might be 
made available on our western waters. Attached to the cylinder is one 
valve for the admission of steam, and two for its escape; the former is 
worked in the usual way, but the latter are made to work as follows: the 
exhaust valve communicating with the atmosphere, opens when the piston 
is If inches from the end of the cylinder, and continues open until the 
piston has completed its full stroke, and has come back If inches, when 
the first exhaust valve is closed, and the second, communicating with a 
condenser, is opened, and the steam remaining in the cylinder is con- 
densed in the usual way. B. 

Translated for the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Experiments on the Thermo-Electnc Power of Crystallized Bismuth and 
Antimony. Extract from a note by M. Svanberg, communicated by 
M. Regnault. 

For some time past the observation of facts which it is useless to men- 
tion here, had led me to think that the thermo-electric force of the metals 
might probably depend on some variability in their conducting power for 
electricity. I was, moreover, led to believe that this conducting power 
ought to be variable in different directions in crystallized bismuth and 
antimony, since their crystalline form, according to the recent examina- 
tions of MM. Faraday and G. Rose, does not belong to the regular sys- 
tem. I was hence led to examine whether the thermo-electric power of 
these two metals would not also be variable with the direction. This 
supposition has been completely verified by the experiments which I am 
about to describe. 

In large masses of bismuth or antimony the crystalline texture is never 
the same throughout, but it is not difficult to find homogeneous parts in 
them. Then with a saw we may form little bars whose length shall be 
differently inclined to their planes of crystallization. 

Among the planes of cleavage of these two metals in the crystalline 
state, there is one, noticed first by M. Faraday, which differs from the 
others by greater brilliancy. This plane is perpendicular to the principal 
axis of crystallization. Among the other planes of cleavage there is 
one whose brilliancy is not much inferior to that of the preceding. I 
shall call (A) the bar whose length coincides with the intersection of these 

40 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

two planes; by (B) I shall designate the bar whose length is perpendicular 
to the most brilliant cleavage-plane. 

Antimony and Bismuth have this common property — the bars (A) are 
more positive, and those (B) more negative, in the thermo-electric series, 
than any other bar which can be formed from the same metal. The 
thermo-electric force between the Antimony (A) and (B), or between the 
Bismuth (A) and (B), is quite considerable. If a bar is taken interme- 
diate between (A) and (B), that is to say, so that the direction of the length 
is differently inclined to the plane of cleavage, or if it has not a regular 
crystalline texture, it is negative with (A) and positive with (B). It will 
be seen that the direction of the length of the bars (B) agrees with the 
magne-crystalline axis of M. Faraday, as has been tried and confirmed 
for every bar employed. This axis took the axial position in Bismuth, 
and the equatorial for Antimony, which accords with the observations of 
M. Plucker. 

This variability of the thermo-electric force of Bismuth and Antimony 
appears to give the key for the explanation of the currents observed by 
MM. Sturgeon and Matteucci, in circuits formed with only one of these 
metals. Heretofore they have not been explicable. As to the direction 
of the thermo-electric currents between hot bismuth and cold bismuth, or 
hot antimony and cold antimony, different experimenters have obtained 
different results. Vorselmann de Heer, who is the last who has attended 
to this subject, found that the current went sometimes from the cold metal 
to the hot, sometimes from the hot to the cold. He believed, from his 
observations, that the direction of the current depended on the greater 
or less difference between the temperatures of the bars. He says that be 
found these reversals particularly with antimony. 

In order that such experiments shall have any value it is absolutely 
necessary that the bars operated on shall hold the same place in the 
thermo-electric series. Thus, for example, (A) must be compared with 
(A) and (B) with (B), but not (A) with (B). It ought, therefore, to have 
been first ascertained whether the two bars are absolutely homogeneous. 
It is very remarkable that (A) with (A) does not behave in the same way 
as (B) with (B). 

My mode of experimenting was as follows: The two bars were fixed 
in copper handles, which by wires also of copper, were put into com- 
munication with a very sensitive galvanometer. From the points of con- 
tact with the copper, the bars were immersed in snow nearly to their free 
extremities; in this way no current could be excited by bringing the ex- 
tremities in contact, and giving them any elevated temperature. This is 
the method of ascertaining satisfactorily that the bars are thermo-electri- 
cally homogeneous. But if, before putting them in contact, the extre- 
mity of one of the bars be slightly either heated or cooled, a current is 
established, whose direction the galvanometer indicates. If the two bars 
are of Bismuth (A) or Antimony (A), the current passes from the cold 
metal to the warm; if the bars (B) are operated on, the direction is oppo- 
site: that is, the current goes from the warm to the cold metal. This 
difference between (A) and (B) appears to me to be very remarkable, but 
I have verified it by multiplied experiments with different bars. I have 
never been able, in my mode of operating, to find any reversal of the 

English and .American Steamship Building. 41 

current when the difference between the temperatures of the two extremi- 
ties was increased. 

For slight differences of temperature, M. Vorselrnann de Heer found, 
while experimenting on Antimony, the current going from the warm to 
the cold metal. The opposite direction, which I found for the Antimony 
(A), cannot be explained by any slight elevation of temperature which 
might have been communicated from the heated end to the point of junc- 
tion with the copper; for it is easy to see that such a warming would have 
produced a precisely opposite effect. But it is very possible that M. Vor- 
selrnann de Heer may have experimented with bars thermo-electrically 
heterogeneous, — a very excusable inadvertence, since the connexion be- 
tween the thermo-electric force and the direction of the current, relative 
to the plane of crystallization, was not then known. 

For Bismuth (B) I found, as did the experimenters who have made 
the experiment before me, that the current passed from the warm metal 
to the cold. The opposite direction which I have observed for Bismuth 
(A) cannot either be explained by any slight elevation of temperature, 
which might have been communicated from the heated end to its point 
of junction with the copper, since an opposite effect would thus have 
been produced. — Comptes Rendus de PAcad. des Sci., Aug. 19, 1850. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Screw Propellers. 

Cannot the Institute throw some real practical light on this subject, viz: 
What is the best form of propeller? Should it have 6, 4, 3, or 2 blades? 
Which is the best angle? Should they be run at high or low speed? 
There are at least a dozen different patents, but none of them settle these 
points. What proportion should the propelling surface of the propeller 
bear to the immersed midship section of the vessel? At present, scarcely 
any two propellers are built alike; constant changes are made without 
apparently affecting the result. Are they all right, or all wrono-? H. 

English and American Steamship Building. — Ocean Navigation. — The 
dinar d and Collins Lines * 

Sir, — The publication of certain facts and drawings, in Nos. 1398 and 
1408. relative to the rival steam-ships of the Cunard and Collins' Trans- 
atlantic Lines, induce me to address you as heretofore, under the same 
signature, which, though anonymous, shall, I trust, be supported by facts 
and figures sufficient to neutralize that disadvantage. 

And I may state my reasons for this course. I do not wish to make your 
pages a vehicle for personal renown or professional advancement. I shall 
rigidly adhere to the truth, to the best of my belief, and utterly repudiate 
any personal allusions or antipathies. I should prefer to remain un- 
known; but I authorize you to give up my name to any one who, in your 
judgment, may require it for proper purposes. 

• From the London Mechanics' Magazine, for September, 1850. 

42 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

The subject of my remarks, and to which I earnestly desire to draw 
the attention of your readers, of the public, and particularly of English 
engineers, is the merits and demerits of the two systems of engineering 
adopted in the vessels of the Cunard line, which have been built and 
manufactured in this country; and in those of Collins' line, the production 
of our brethren in the United States. Both are excellent in their way, 
and each, in the absence of the other, would have been — indeed has been 
— considered perfection; but competition, and a very proper and laudable 
rivalry, has shown which of them it is best and most desirable to adopt 
in extending Atlantic steam navigation. 

They have shown this to a certain extent, but no more. Neither of 
these lines of steamers (as it respects their machinery) have developed 
the highest state of engineering knowledge now and for some time past 
existing in this country. Humiliating as it may be to British engineers 
to acknowledge that they are beaten, although by their next of kin, it is 
tolerably certain that we shall have to make that admission; and your in- 
telligent correspondent in No. 1398, prophesies this: to the best of my 
belief this will be so, has been so, and it is capable of very easy proof 
why it should be so. 

But, that it could not have been otherwise, I utterly deny. I assert, 
that means are known to us by which both these systems (and they differ 
but in small degree) may be immeasurably excelled, at a much cheaper 
outlay, diminished cost for repairs, both in engines and ships, and a far 
more efficient result in all respects; and that this is not only practicable, 
but has really become an acknowledged fact, it shall be my object to 

Steam engines are of various constructions and mechanical arrange- 
ments; — mprinciple, they are as left to us by the immortal Watt. Modern 
necessities and ingenuity have introduced many deviations from his plans, 
and, as might be expected from extended practice and experience, with 
good result. Mr. Watt left us the "beam" or "side-lever" engine — 
excellent in its way, and suitable to his time (it has many votaries even 
now); others have introduced the "direct engine;" others, tubular boilers 
in place of flue boilers; others, feathering or eccentric paddle wheels, in 
lieu of the common radial wheel. 

Cunard's vessels possess none of these improvements; — they have beam 
engines, flue boilers, and radial paddle wheels. 

Collins' vessels have beam engines and radial paddle wheels; but the 
boilers are partly tubular, and alone are the cause of their superiority over 
tlieir competitors. This has been so ably shown by your correspondent 
already quoted, in No. 1398, page 402, that I do not think it either 
necessary or just to occupy your space with further proof than to observe, 
that the great evaporative power of the boilers, and the extended grate 
surface, (a capacity to consume fuel with economy,) must be conclusive 
to the minds of all professional men, and that all other things being the 
same, we must succumb. We must "go-ahead" again by merely avail- 
ing ourselves of the means we possess, and we assuredly shall be trium- 
phant in a superlative degree. 

This is matter of grave import for the consideration of those whose 
pecuniary interests are connected with the Cunard line of steamers; it is 

English and American Steamship Building. 43 

still more of importance to another great and flourishing Company, of 
whom I shall speak hereafter, hut whose infatuation and error is so 
utterly unaccountable, when we reflect that they ought to he — must be — 
fully aware of the great advantages they might have secured by a more 
able and discriminating course, which, if taken, would have been the 
means of placing them at the head of the steam navigation of the world. 
It will be their ill-fortune to see the great mistake they have made in the 
spring of 1850. 

It must be evident to all men that small space occupied by steam machine- 
ry on board ship, and its minimum weight, compatible with strength and 
efficiency, must be that which is to be desired. All modern improvement 
has tended to this end; indeed, diminished weight of machinery is really 
power, for thereby you decrease the immersion of your ship, lessen her 
resistance, and increase her velocity, with a greater capability to carry 
her cargo and make a voyage remunerative, without additional outlay 
in fuel. 

To do this to the greatest extent, there can be no doubt that we must 
adopt oscillating or vibrating steam engines, tubular or other improved 
boilers, and eccentric paddle wheels. 

I have already remarked, that Cunard's vessels are fitted with the ordi- 
nary main lever engines, common flue boilers, and radial paddle wheels; 
the workmanship of the whole is excellent — in fact, it is a splendid piece 
of mechanism, and, of its kind, perfect. It has also been noticed, that 
Collins' vessels differ only in the construction of the boilers, which are 
partly tubular; and this, though but a small instalment of our knowledge, 
is still sufficient to establish a superiority, and therefore powerfully sup- 
ports the position I have taken, and shall now proceed to make evident 
and patent to your readers. 

The subject may be divided into the three portions already stated; 
namely, engines, boilers, and paddle wheels, and these I will take 

I. Beam engines are the most ponderous of all constructions now extant. 
I have before ine a list of about 150 pairs of these machines, which, with 
common flue boilers and water, radial paddle wheels, and coal boxes, 
average about 23 cwts. per nominal horse power. The weights may be 
taken as follows, in decimal parts of a ton, and may be useful to many of 
your readers: 

Engines alone, = *515 
Paddle Wheels, . . . -092 

Boiler and Apparatus, . . '310 

Water in ditto, .... -207 

Coal Bunkers, . . . •031=1-155, 

or just 23 cwts. per nominal horse power. I believe this to be an average 
weight of beam engines, &c, as detailed; but, if report he true, the ma- 
chinery of the Cunard steamers weighs even still more; it is said to be 1000 
tons! which, for 800 horses power, is just 25 cwts. per nominal horse! 

The superiority of Collins' vessels does not arise from lighter machine- 
ry, but from the greatly enlarged evaporative power of the boilers, without 
increase either in weight or space. 

Beam engines are very expensive to manufacture. Oscillating engines, 

44 Mechanics, Physics y and Chemistry. 

at j£40 per horse, (boilers and paddle wheels being the same,) is a more 
lucrative order than beam engines at .£50 per horse, which will appear 
evident when we compare the quantity of material in the two kinds of 
engines; — they are more expensive in repairs, use more oil and tallow 
from the number of the parts, are subject to transverse strains, requiring 
an enormously strong and heavy bed-plate to counteract the pressure up- 
on the main gudgeon, which has to resist double the force of the steam 
upon the piston. 

It is also dangerous to work beam engines under heavy pressures of 
steam, unless the motive parts are made more than usually heavy and 
strong — generally 2h times the nominal power is the usual practice. I 
know one or two instances where three times has been obtained, but acci- 
dents have resulted, to which they will always be liable; but make the 
connexions as strong and heavy as you please, these engines can never 
contend in this respect with the direct or oscillating engine. 

The space occupied in the ship is also of paramount importance. Beam 
engines of 800 horses power will require not less than 35 to 36 feet in 
the most important part of the vessel. Oscillating engines of the same 
nominal horses power will have ample room in 14 or 15 feet, and they 
require less than one-half the timber foundation or "sleepers" to erect 
them upon. 

The oscillating engine is self-contained; all its strains are direct — not 
doubled (as in the main gudgeons of beam engines); a great number of 
parts are banished, and simplicity in its integrity duly obtained: the centre 
of gravity of the whole is lower, and therefore tending to increase the 
stability of the ship; the wear and tear is less, and, when requiring repair, 
the cost is small from the few working parts. It may be made to bear 
almost any pressure by a slight increase in the crank shafts and piston rods. 
It goes at once to its work, which it does with vigour and certitude — in- 
dicator diagrams fully proving a proper effect for every atom of steam that 
is used. 

And, lastly, the lueight of the oscillating engine is just one-half that of 
the beam engine. Apair of oscillating engines, properly constructed, (for 
we have quacks in engineering as well as in medicine,) will weigh no 
more than one beam engine. 

Taking an average of upwards of 3000 horses power which I have de- 
signed, the engines alone weigh just -253 of a ton per nominal horse, or 
say 5 cwt. only. 

Here, then, is a great secret, not so fully known as it should be; and 
I shall be amply rewarded if I succeed in convincing those of its truth 
who are so deeply and pecuniarily interested in this question. 

It may be as well to insert here the weight of oscillating engines, tubular 
boilers, and mechanical wheels, which are as follows: — 

Oscillating engines, .... =-253 

Patent Piuldle Wheels, . . . . -110 

Tubular Boilers, having 16 square feet of absorbent sur- 
face per horse power and apparatus, . . "215 
Water in the Boilers, .... '100 
Coal Boxes, -030 


English and American Steamship Building. 


or just 14 cwt. per nominal horse! and this is not supposition, but what 
the writer has done with 3000 horses power, and what has been done by 
Penn for several years past in some of the finest of our men-of-war. The 
Retribution may be quoted, as one instance of the advantages to be ob- 

II. Tubular boilers have suffered much in reputation by being made too 
contracted in the water-ways, the tubes too close together, and the plates 
not sufficiently strong to resist the increased pressure used in them. They 
save both in weight and space, and are now designed quite free from the 
general objections made to them; they are not more expensive in fuel when 
a due proportion exists between the absorbent surface and the surface of 
the grates; and I know no reason why they should not be as durable as the 
ordinary flue boiler; they perhaps require more attention in blowing off, 
and keeping free from salt and earthy incrustation — that is all. 

But the great saving is in the oscillating engine. If tubular boilers are 
objected to, we can have recourse to double tier flue boilers, which may 
be made with very slightly-increased weight and dimensions. The follow- 
ing Table will show the great improvements of late years in this branch 
of marine engineering: — 

Contents of 

Contents of 



Area of the 

Years made in. 

Per Nominal Horse. 

Boiler in 


Base of 

Cub. Feet. 



1818 to 1840 

Ordinary single flue boiler, 
an average of 107 boil- 






1840 to 1850 Double tier flue boilers, 

an average of 20 boil- 






1840 to 1850 Tubular boilers as hitherto 

made, . 





Therefore, making an allowance for the proper enlargement of tubular 
boilers for the purposes of ocean navigation, there will not be found any 
important preference over the double tier flue boiler. 

III. Eccentric or feathering paddle ivhcels possess very important quali- 
ties; and although I adhere rigidly to the general opinions many years 
since expressed in print upon these wheels, as then constructed, they are 
now so much improved in manufacture and design as to have become 
commercially useful. They are nearly double the weight of common 
radial wheels, quite double the cost, and, so far as my experience goes, 
still give very great trouble and labor to repair. But for ships of variable 
draught, accustomed to contend with heavy seas, and also as conducive 
to the comfort of the passengers and crew, they are invaluable, and far 
beyond their extra cost; therefore I recommend their use for Atlantic na- 

In a former part of this paper I referred to the Royal Mail Company 
(West India) who have lately entered into contracts to extend their fleet 
by the addition of five superb ships of upwards of 3000 tons displacement, 
having beams of 39 feet, and 270 feet long, drawing 19-6 when fully laden. 

I have already expressed my deep regret that this Company should 

46 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

have contracted (with one exception) for the obsolete beam engine — flue- 
boilers — and feathering or eccentric wheels. This they will assuredly re- 
gret; but having, I trust, fully shown the advantages to be derived from 
another course, I will devote the remainder of this paper to show what 
the Company will attain, and what they might have possessed with a less- 
outlay — how they might have secured the greatest perfection, and how 
they have left open an opportunity for a vigorous and successful opposi- 
tion to their earnest and sincere desires to uphold the permanency of their 

They have contracted for engines of 750 nominal horses power; now, 
as I have already stated that beam engines at £50 per horse is not so 
lucrative an order as oscillating engines at £40 per horse, hence they 
might have saved, 

750 horses, at £50 per horse, .... £37,500 

750 " £40 "..... £30,000 

or £7,500 upon each pair of engines, or in the five ships no less a sum 
than £37,500, or just the cost of one pair of beam engines! 

I need not say that the interest upon this amount is of some importance; 
or state the value of this sum as the nucleus of an insurance fund, and 
which this Company have hitherto found the use of in a more than usual 
degree. But the most important consideration will be the increased ve- 
locities of these ships, had they been fitted with machinery of the most 
improved and efficient kind. 

I have already noted that their new ships are to have beams of 39 feet, 
and when laden and fully equipped for sea on starting from Southampton, 
are expected to draw 19 feet 6 inches of water. 

The area of the immersed midship section will therefore be about 670 
square feet. 

We will also allow that the indicator power will be 2\ times the nominal 
power, a very full proportion for beam engines to work safely under (un- 
less they are made more than usually strong in the motive parts, as before 
explained.) We therefore have 750x2-5=1875 horses power. 

It is well known by engineers that the power required to propel ships 
is as the cubes of the velocities, and from an extended experience, I assert 
that the mechanical result may be represented by the factor 800, and it 
will be perfectly correct to take the area of the midship section (in each 
case) as the exponent of the resistance of the ship. Therefore the velocity 
will be 

^1875x800 1Q ao -i v 

- =13-08 miles per hour. 


This is, with beam engines of 23 cwt. per nominal horse power, or a 
total weight of 862-5 tons complete. 

I have already shown that oscillating engines may be made to weigh 
but 14 cwt. per horse, and to exert three times the nominal power, with- 
out the slightest increase in the parts, and when so strengthened (an inex- 
pensive process) may be extended to 3.V times the nominal power. There- 
fore 750 x 14 cwt. = 525 tons, or a saving upon the beam engine of 337-5 
tons dead weight ! ! 

The power of the oscillating engine will be 750 x 3=2250 horses, and 

English and American Steamship Building. 47 

•snpposing the 337-5 tons on board in the shape of cargo (paying a heavy 
freight), the velocity would be 

xV2250x800 1QQn ., . 

_— =13-90 miles per hour, 

6 /0 

an increase of 0-82 mile per hour by the superior power of the oscillating 
engine alone. 

But this comparison is faulty, because we have not accounted for the 
decreased weight of 337-5 tons. 

From the magnitude of these ships, each inch of their immersion will 
be equal to about 20 tons. Therefore 



16-875 inches 

decrease in the draft, so that the area of the midship section will be re- 
duced by the lighter but more efficient machinery, from 670 to 614 feet; 
and using the same formula we shall have 

\K2250x800 ,.„.,., 

— =14*31 miles per hour, 


or an excess over the beam engine of (14-31 — 13-08)= 1-23 miles per 

I take from an original prospectus of the Royal Mail Company the 
route out and home at 10,500 statute miles, and though perhaps not ab- 
solutely correct, it will answer my purpose for an illustration of the ad- 
vantages to be derived from^mproved machinery. 

The beam engine will produce a velocity of 13-08 miles per hour — the 
oscillating engine, 14*13 miles (all things being the same). Therefore, 
this service would be performed by the former in 33^ days, and by the 
latter in 30J days; and this saving of three days would be accompanied 
by the insurance fund of 37,500/. ! 

On the other hand, presuming that a cargo of 337*5 tons were taken 
onboard, the voyage could be completed in 31^ days, — a saving of two 
days, and the freight of the 337 tons of merchandise, which I leave others 
to set a value upon. 

Applying these views and arguments to the Cunard's line of steamers, 
it is certain that if an average passage is now 11 days, it would become 
one of 9h or 10 days at the most. 

I may, perhaps, not be fully understood by your general readers; but I 
recommend this paper to the careful consideration of the profession, and 
to that of the powerful companies interested in the matter here discussed. 
You, Sir, know I have no trade-interest in w T hat I write — I am not "look- 
ing for a job" — but do not wish to see the day when our pre-eminence as 
engineers can be called into question. 

It would be a curious finale, if our brethren in America (far-seeing as 
they are) were to adopt the improvements now suggested. I believe that 
will be the result; and if they do, our boasted performances, as they now 
exist in ocean steam navigation will be entirely eclipsed. 
I am, sir, yours, &c, 

Pressure, not Puff. 


Translated for the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 
On the Distillation of Mercury by Overheated Steam. By M. Violette. 

The new process for the distillation of mercury consists in plunging the 
mass to be distilled into a current of steam overheated to the temperature 
of 350° to 400° Cent. (662° to 752° Fahr.) The vapor acts both as a 
calorific and a mechanical agent; it, in the first place, heats the metal, so 
as to excite distillation, and then drives before it, and draws over the mer- 
curial vapors, whose renewal it also facilitates; it hastens the distillation, 
as a current of hot air facilitates the evaporation of water; the steam charged 
with mercurial vapors are condensed together in a common refrigerant; 
the metal separates and sinks to the bottom of the vessel, while the con- 
densed water flows out at the top. It is a rather curious thing to observe 
the liquid stream which flows from the refrigerant; two currents or streams 
may be distinguished, the upper one water, and below it the mercury; it 
is a continual current of each substance. No concussions are produced, 
and the operation goes on as tranquilly and easily as in the case of the 
distillation of common water. 

The apparatus which served me in all my experiments was composed, 
first, of a cylindrical cast iron retort, which receives the recipient which 
contains the mercury; second, of a wrought iron worm in the upper part 
of the furnace which heats it. The steam circulates in the worm, is there 
heated to the proper degree, enters the retort, traverses it from one extre- 
mity to the other, passing over the surface of the mercury, and escapes 
with the mercurial vapors, to condense with the water and the mercury 
in the refrigerant. 

In a series of tables, the author gives the results which he obtained in 
a series of experiments on the distillation of mercury alone or amalga- 
mated; he indicates the quantities of steam necessary, and exhibits the 
economical advantages, which he sums up as follows, viz: 

1. Facility of the Operatiq^-. — The boiling and distillation of water are 
substituted for the difficult and dangerous boiling and distillation of mer- 
cury; no more trouble in the management of the fire, no more danger of 
breaking the apparatus, no more difficulty in getting out the metal, no 
more notable destruction of the retort; a constant and determined tempera- 
ture, much lower than the red-heat usually employed. 

2. Economy of Labor. — A single laborer may manage a distillatory ap- 
paratus charged with 1000 kilogrammes of amalgam — the new process 
permits the largest dimensions. 

3. Economy of Fuel. — This is certain, and practice alone can determine 
the amount. There will be no useless excess of fuel expended, since the 
apparatus will not be heated beyond the temperature necessary for the 
distillation of the metal. 

4. Economy of Mercury. — The distillation of 100 parts of the amalgam 
of silver determines a loss of 2 parts of mercury. There are annually pro- 
duced and distilled 6,000,000 kilogrammes of the silver amalgam; this is 
then a loss of 120,000 kilogrammes of mercury, worth at least 1,000,000 
francs, ($200,000,) which this new process permits us to avoid. 

5. Public Salubrity. — In the new process there is no loss of mercury; 

On Vertical and Radial Paddle Wlieels. 49 

the mercurial vapors are extinguished in the steam, and are condensed 
with it; moreover, in the common mode, the mercurial vapor still fills the 
whole apparatus, when this is opened at the end of the operation, and 
spreads into the air, while, in this latter method, the steam sweeps out all 
the metallic vapor from the apparatus, and the opening of it is without 
danger. The guarantee is thus complete, and the employment of over- 
heated steam appears to have solved the problem which has been long 
sought after, to preserve completely the workmen from the mortal attacks 
of the mercury in the numerous and important branches of industry in 
which the distillation of this metal is required. — Complex Rendus de 
VAcad. des $ci., Oct. 14, 1850. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

On Vertical and Radial Paddle Wlieels. 

The last four numbers of the Journal have contained several articles 
from Mr. Isherwood, one of the Chief Engineers of the U. S. Navy, advo- 
cating strongly the great advantages which, he contends, vertical paddle 
wheels have over the ordinary radial paddle, and a reply to Mr. I.'s first 
article by "M." who takes the opposite side of the question, and the one 
most generally received in England, where the wheel of Morgan is best 
known and understood. Without entering into any discussion as to the 
merits of the two wheels, and willing to leave the matter in the hands of 
those whose interest it is to have the best — the commercial community — 
[ propose to examine some of the calculations and assertions of Mr. I., 
and see if they are worth as much as he would wish them to pass current 
for, and in his last article insists we shall take them at. 

Mr. I. compares two vessels of 600 and 900 tons, and, without know- 
ing the pressure on the piston, assumes it to be the same in each, because 
the pressure in the boiler was the same, and from his own reasoning- 
claims two per cent, advantage for the vertical paddle. To prove his 
authority for this assumption, he states that it is a well known fact, that 
with wide throttles the initial steam pressure in the cylinder is from 1\ 
to 2^ lbs. less than in the boiler. Now, grant all this, what means has he 
of knowing what it was in these two steamers? He assumes the mean, 
(2 lbs.) and yet where is his authority for so doing? In one steamer it might 
have been H and in the other 2| lbs. less than in the boiler, and the 
extreme difference may as well have existed in these steamers as in any 
others. Again, his 17 lbs. is composed of pressure and vacuum, the last 
of which he has also assumed to be the same. Now, it is well known to 
every practical engineer, that not only do steamers that are similar vary 
in their vacuum, but vessels of the same dimensions in every respect will 
often vary a pound: nay, more, when there are two engines in the same 
vessel, the vacuum is better in one engine than in the other, and they 
oftener differ than agree. In proof of this, I have the experience of many 
good engineers, besides my own observation on many steamers. But still 
further, in all cases that have fallen under my own observation, where a 
steamer has had two engines unconnected with each other, (except that 
both obtained their steam from the same boiler,) one of the engines, with-- 

Vol. XXI.— Tumi) Skhiks. — No. 1. — January, 1851. 5 

50 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

out any visible cause, would make from a half to one revolution more than 
the other per minute, being a difference of from 2| to 5 prct. If, then, these 
differences exist where every thing is alike, who shall assume, in the ab- 
sence of an indicator, that two steamers, unlike in every other particular, 
shall have the same pressure on the piston. It will at once be seen, that 
unless all the assumptions of Mr. I. are strictly correct, the two per cent, 
which he claims may be dissipated at once, and the balance may be 
against him rather than in his favor. 

But, supposing all Mr. I. states to be correct, and that he is fairly enti- 
tled to the two per cent, on 20 feet wheels, is it proper to make such a 
comparison, when he must know that most of our sea steamers have 
wheels of 30 feet, and our European steamers wheels of 36 feet, and that 
in both cases the average dip does not exceed one-sixth of the diameter? 
An engineer who writes in 1850, is supposed to be doing so for the benefit 
of the present and not the past age. As to his assertions, that the vertical 
paddle may be made much superior to the radial wheel, by increasing its 
slip from 19*3 to 25 per cent., I can only say that narrow wheels and in- 
creased slip have been often tried, and have not given the results expect- 
ed; and the mercantile community, both in this country and in England, 
are still sufficiently stupid to be satisfied with the old wheel, with all its 
disadvantages. "M." in his reply to Mr. Isherwood, states that in a trial 
between two vessels exactly alike, except in wheel, the one with the ver- 
tical paddle had to make two more revolutions per minute to equal in 
speed the vessel with radial paddles, and of course the one making the 
greatest number of revolutions consumed the most fuel. I understand 
Mr. I. to admit the fact as to the number of revolutions, which he ac- 
counts for; but he objects to the remark, that the one making the greatest 
number of revolutions per minute consumed the most fuel, and states 
thaf'M." is the first discoverer of this fact, and he is willing to give him 
all the credit of it. Now, let us examine into this, and see which is cor- 
rect. At page 185, September No. of the Journal, we are told by Mr. I. that 
the power required to work the engine, overcome load of air pump, &c, 
was equal to a pressure of 2 lbs. per square inch on the piston. Now, 
assume that both of these vessels had single cylinders of 70 inches diameter, 
8 feet stroke, and that the one with radial paddles made 16, and the one 
with vertical paddles 18 revolutions per minute, the power lost in working 
the engine will be as follows: 

3848 x 2 x 256 
Radiating Paddle, t^ooo =6 ° ^ orse P ower ' 

„ . . M 3848x2x288 „ 

Vertical « 33000 =67 

From this data, given us by Mr. I. himself, it is very evident that more 
power has been expended in one engine than in the other to overcome 
friction, &c, and an increased expenditure of power involves an increased 
consumption of fuel, and, on this account, the increased loss from radia- 
tion. Clearance at the ends of the cylinder, and at steam ports, caused 
by oftener filling the cylinder, is not taken into account, and would show 
a greater difference than I have given. 

Mr. I. states that the experiments made at Maudslay & Fields, and 

Explosion of tlie Steamboat "Anglo-Norman." 51 

witnessed by Mr. Barlow, were made without any sagacity of method, 
and both the experiment in its conduct, and the conclusions drawn from 
it, are erroneous. To prove this, I hope he will give us something more 
than assertions; a course of practical experiments, witnessed by disinter- 
ested engineers, would be valuable, and an assertion has value if supported 
by fact, but is useless without it. Fulton. 

To the Committee on Publications. 
Explosion of the Steamboat "Anglo-Norman." 

New Orleans, Dec. 17th, 1850. 

Gentlemen: Again we have had an explosion of a steam boiler in 
this vicinity, resulting in a loss of valuable lives and property. I have 
endeavored to gain as much information as possible from eye-witnesses, 
and an inspection of the hull and ruins early the next day after the ex- 

As no part of the boiler remains, it prevents certain conclusions being 
formed of the cause. 

The new steam tow-boat "Anglo-Norman," built entirely here, after 
having been proved by three trips to and from the gulf with tows; the 
owners and makers invited many of the influential gentlemen of the city 
on an excursion trip, which took place on the 13th; the boat was run 
some distance up the river, and on her return, when about eight miles 
above the city, at 3 P. M., her boiler exploded, killing and wounding 
many of the persons on board. 

For a better understanding I will give some particulars of the boiler. 
It was of the "wagon form," thirty feet long, sixteen feet wide, and nine 
and a half high, and weighed about 28 tons; in the interior there were 
four plain arches, (without any "water bridges,") extending to the back 
end, and above these were eight return cylindrical flues, about 15 inches 
in diameter; the water legs or sides were about four inches in the clear; 
each arch contained a set of grate-bars, and the lower part of the arched 
flues had the usual brick work and apron; to those practically acquainted 
with condensing engine boilers, it will be readily understood that this 
was one of the poorest plans for an economy of any kind of fuel, and 
more particularly when it was of anthracite coal. 

It was made by Armstrong & Co., regular boiler-makers, after a nearly 
similar one made in New York, and its workmanship appeared good; the 
only peculiarity I noticed from an outside view was that the iron was 
lighter than that used at the North for similar boilers; as far as the shell 
was concerned, and as it was not deteriorated by use, I considered it 
amply strong for a working pressure of fifty pounds to the square inch. 
I have understood that it was not intended to exceed the thirty-one inches 
of the mercury guage, but as the small tube of the guage took the steam 
from the end of the steam pipe some thirty-five feet from its attachment 
to the steam drum, it of course was not a correct indicator of the pressure 
in the boiler when the engine was in motion; not having seen the boiler 
after it was placed on board, I rely on others; — the safety valve was 

52 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

above the steam drum — it also had the usual glass water gauge, blow- 
cocks, &c. On one side was a small engine to work extra pumps, and 
on the other side of the main boiler, was another engine to drive the 
blower, these were supplied with steam from a small high pressure boiler. 
The top of the boiler and its steam pipe was covered with hair felting to 
prevent the radiation of heat. By the testimony of the captain and others 
of the boat, given on oath at the inquest held on the body of Mr. Still- 
man, of the Novelty Works, New York, it was stated that the safety 
valve was adjusted to blow off at twenty-five inches of the mercury 
gauge before mentioned, and at twenty-six inches the steam would blow 
off freely, which was the case before the steamer left the wharf on this 
excursion trip. All that had noticed the water gauge and gauge cocks 
a short time prior to the explosion, concur in the opinion that there was 
plenty of water in the boiler; this I believe from the many indications on 
the wreck. The pressure of steam, as was shown by the gauge tube, 
and seen by many different observers a short time before the boiler gave 
way, range from twenty-two to twenty-six inches — weighing all the 
opinions on this point, I do not think that it exceeded the mean (24 
inches). Now from the opinions of those on board, that the boiler did 
not make steam freely or enough, (and this is quite plausible,) the short 
time elapsing, from ten to fifteen minutes, at which the pressure was no- 
ticed, would not admit of a great increase of steam from the ordinary 
action of the fire, and the question arises, how did the explosion take 
place? As no part of the boiler remains, with the slight exception of 
some rivet heads, and a broken stay which had been inside the boiler, 
the answer can only be conjectural. 

The power consisted of a horizontal condensing engine, with balance 
valves, and Sickel's cut-off; it is similar in plan, but far superior in work- 
manship, to one built at New York city and in use here. The cylinder 
is forward of the wheel shafts, and the boiler ahead of the cylinder, the 
furnace end being near the bow. 

At the time of the explosion, the ash pan was moved a little ahead, 
and turned up on its edge; it is in good order; all of the grate bars and 
some of their bearers were thrown above fifteen feet from their original 
position on to the forecastle, they are uninjured; the same is the state of 
the foremast; it was wetted with dirty water, on each side, about twenty 
feet high; a little ahead of the boiler front remain, on each side, two 
posts or stancheons (unhurt), which support the carlins of the boiler- 
deck, some of the end pieces of boards still remain attached to them; these 
shew the marks of the dirty water; all the deck covering the boiler aft 
to the front of the small cabin, has been carried away. Bricks, and many 
pieces of light sheet iron work, and the broken steer- wheel are strewed 
on the main deck, some of the cast iron stands and pieces of sheet iron 
are carried aft nearly to the wheel shafts, and one check valve complete 
was thrown into the engineers' work-room, where also the second engi- 
neer was blown, and escaped with a slight scalding. The engine is 
scarely injured; the separation of the steam pipe from the side pipe, has 
been by the tearing and breaking of all the flanch bolts, leaving the vul- 
canised rubber joint remaining in good order; the end of the throttle 

Explosion of the Steamboat "Anglo-Norman" 53 

valve lever being fastened by the usual thumb screw, remains as it was 

at the time of the explosion; the steam passed this valve through a double 

crescent formed opening, measuring one-half inch 

at the greatest space; the diameter of the valve 

chamber being 15^ inches, gives such an area for 

the steam way as, for the size of the cylinder, 56 

inches by 10 feet stroke, and a cut-off of about 

^ stroke, and a working pressure of 24 lbs. to the 

inch, would confirm that "the boat was going along 


All of the copper pipes, such as the feed, and blow pipes, &c, attached 
to the lower part of the boiler, pass up through holes in the main deck, 
and are torn off nearly where they were connected with the boiler; they 
consist of heavy copper, and the soft solder on the ends of some of them 
give no indications of over heating; these pipes being on both sides of 
the boiler, near the ends, remain battered, and each set drawn out on 
the deck, slightly inclined aft towards the starboard and larboard sides, 
in lines nearly at right angles with the centre of the hull. The top of 
the starboard wheel-house is shattered by some solid body coming in 
contact with it. On the arch of this wheel-house, outside of it, and the 
after part of the boiler deck, and the top of the cabin, (the most abaft) 
there are many pieces of sheathing paper, felting, and small pieces, &c, 
dust of anthracite coal, (I send you a piece of the largest, which is partly 
consumed, and a piece of the hair felting, the fibres being perfect, with 
the dirt attached, — it and the piece of coal were near each other); along 
with this coal dust there still remained much water where it could be 
retained, both on the top of the cabin as well as the boiler and main deck, 
and the dampness and dirt showed the inside edge well defined, as a 
small part of the deck was perfectly dry and clean. 

The report was different in sound according to the position of those 
who heard it, thus: those nearest and above, described it as "dull;" fur- 
ther aft, "as a double report," (probably the boiler first, and the crashing 
of the wood work); and those at a distance off, "as a dull boomino- sound 
like a distant cannon;" whilst those on the main deck heard no report 
at all. One of the deck hands, sitting abaft the wheel shaft, in the pas- 
sage formed by the wheel-house and engine timbers, heard nothing but 
was knocked over by a rush of cold air, (something similar to the windage 
of a cannon ball). It is confirmed by different persons, that there was a 
discharge of water and steam from the safety valve pipe an instant before 
the explosion. 

My opinion of the explosion is this : that one or both of the middle 
arches gave way, and the lower part of the boiler opened out sideways, 
driving every thing outside before it, and tearing off and stretching out 
the pipes on deck, as before mentioned, and discharging part of the 
water in its flight, and then the upper part (or probably all) rose up in 
the air slightly inclined to the starboard side, tearing off the steam pipe 
at its joint with the engine; and as the boat moved ahead, a part of it 
came in contact with the top of the wheel house, and here as the mass 
had nearly come to a state of rest, the remaining water, coal dust, &c, 
was discharged from it on the upper deck; the mass of iron then fell into 

54 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

the river off the starboard quarter. One or more arches may have given 
way from the breaking or tearing away of the stays,* for it amounts to 
nothing that the pressure was less at that time than it had been before, 
for all conversant with machinery know that parts frequently give way 
when doing the least work. Another hypothesis is, that the intense local 
heat from anthracite coal just at that time may have caused the water to 
be driven out of the middle legs of the arches, and by opening the fire 
doors, pumping in water, or some other cause, the water passing back 
into the heated legs assumed the spheroidal state, or was otherwise in- 
stantly flashed into steam. That there was a sudden increase of pressure 
seems supported by the water and steam coming out of the safety valve 
pipe, by the valve being jerked up, and the water from the condensed 
steam formed in the pipe above the valve being ejected from it; or the 
safety valve may have been raised by the engineer, and if the first sup- 
position is correct, the commotion caused by it produced a shock and 
started the rivets and stays of the arches. 

That there was no neglect in the management of the boiler, seems 
certain, for there were too many practical men about not to notice it if 
such was the case; all who knew the first engineer, Mr. Samuel Hill, 
speak in the highest terms of his professional ability, and give him the 
rare quality of being over cautious; he received the cause of his death 
at his post along side of the engine, which he only left from time to time 
to pass quickly to and from the fire-room. The engine was made at the 
Messrs. Leeds' foundry. No one can say how many lives were lost, as 
many had gone aboard without an invitation; five have died since the 
explosion. It is intended to recover the boiler if possible; — if it is found 
I will furnish you a drawing of it and any other particulars I may learn. 

I have been rather prolix in this account, but I preferred to give all the 
light on the subject I possessed, as it is only by apparent trifles that we 
will arrive at the solution of preventing steam boiler explosions. I may 
not be out of place in making a suggestion, which I have thought of 
doinor f or a long time. I have heard much testimony given on oath re- 
specting explosions, without at all bringing out facts in a scientific point 
of view which would be invaluable data. I would recommend that a 
code of questions, covering every supposed circumstance attending a 
boiler before and after its explosion, be drawn up by the General Go- 
vernment, printed, and furnished to the authorities of each city, or to 
gentlemen of known scientific and mechanical knowledge, with power 
to take testimony on oath, and that the questions and their answers be 
transmitted to one of the bureaus at Washington City; by this means 
much valuable information would be elicited for the benefit of all. 

Respectfully yours, 

A. C. Jones. 

P. S. The steamer "Knoxville's" boilers exploded at the levee a few 
hours ago, 6h P. M. You shall have the details in a few days. 


* The rivet heads, found on the deck, arc square break?, such as rivets present by the 
v»ry common habit of hammering too long; one end of the stay rod is torn off, and in 
the flattened part of the other end remains part of a broken rivet. 


For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

What constitutes an Engineer ? 

Within the last twelve months there have been three explosions on 
the Delaware, one at Baltimore, one at or near New Brunswick, N. J., 
and one at New York, all of them being boats belonging to this city, or 
but very recently from it. Jn two cases the safety valve was tied down. 
In three the boilers were too weak lor the pressure used, and in one a 
probable want of water was the cause. In the first the guilty reaped their 
reward by immediate death. In the second the engineers in charge were 
made to suffer from the ignorance or carelessness of others. The intro- 
duction of high pressure steam tugs on our waters has materially enhanced 
the dangers arising from the use of steam, particularly as these vessels, 
from the simplicity of their engines, are often entrusted to men who have 
no idea of the responsibility of their position, and are entirely ignorant 
of the first principles of steam. Much ignorance prevails in the commu- 
nity on this subject. If a man has a greasy jacket, and rails at anything 
like theoretical knowledge, he is immediately set down as a sound prac- 
tical man. Now there are many grades of engineers, each competent in 
his grade, but out of it often at a loss. There are those who may be 
called constructing engineers, whose business it is to design and superin- 
tend the construction of engines; of this grade there are several varieties. 
One may be perfectly at home on marine engines and know but little of 
locomotives, and the reverse; but each will understand the general prin- 
ciples of the other, although deficient as to details. Then there are two 
classes of practical engineers; one of which is a mechanic and is engaged 
in building, while the other is employed in running the engine when 
finished. The first of these may be ignorant of the details of practical 
operation, and the last is too often ignorant of the first principles of me- 
chanics, either practical or theoretical. This last class do the mischief. 
They are those who literally kill their thousands, not intentionally, but 
through ignorance. The history of steam navigation on the Western 
rivers is a history of wholesale murder and unintentional suicide. We 
say the general diffusion of knowledge prevents crime — a truth none deny 
— and we raise money for free schools that all may have the privilege of 
enjoying them, and at the same time employ engineers who know nothing 
of the principles of steam or practical mechanics. If they are prudent, 
things go on pretty well, but if rash, we soon have the records of a fatal 
accident; if the engineer is killed, that ends the matter; if not, he is ready 
to swear, if necessary, that the boiler had aplenty of water and very little 
steam, rather below the average, and a report is made out which states that 
no one is to blame. At the West they rather enjoy the. c e things than 
otherwise, and one year as a fireman has in times past been a sufficient 
recommenda'ion as an engineer. I must not be understood as saying that 
all of this class are such as I have just been describing, but that it is too 
often the case. I am acquainted with some who, by years of practice, 
have become well worthy of confidence; but these men are now the 
last to deny, and the first to appreciate the value of proper theoretical or 
mechanical knowledge. Taking things as they are, and knowing the 

56 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

fact that, for a few dollars a month, some owners of steamers will employ 
the ignorant, should not some means be taken to protect the community 
from the cupidity and ignorance to which they are too often subjected ? We 
have laws that compel all owners of steamers to have their boilers in- 
spected every six months, while at the same time we allow them to have 
any person for an engineer. A proper inspection of those who have 
charge of steamers is necessary to the public good. Fulton. 

On the Form of Shafts and Axles. By Mr. Thomas Thorneycroft.* 

In order to arrive at proper proportions for any of those principal media 
of power, which are so fully employed in almost every branch of manufac- 
turing science peculiar to this kingdom, two or three leading points ob- 
tain, as axioms on which to reason, in order to arrive at satisfactory 

Taking, for instance, iron as the material in question, it is required to 
apply it in an entire new sphere of mechanical movement; the first leading 
point for examination is the law which limits the tensile and compressive 
powers of that material, and should the various forces which are about to 
be put into operation, be by any means calculable quantities, the tensile 
and compressive powers of the material being determined, there is before 
us an easy mode of arriving at satisfactory results. 

It has, however, been found of equal importance thoroughly to inves- 
tigate the cause of every failure in this material, and mark those parts 
where the greatest amount of weakness appeared, so that in re-construction 
the simple laws of strength, as determined by experiments, are applied in 
connexion with the results of practice, in producing principles of form 
and mechanical arrangement, better and safer than either of them alone 
would have done: yet, notwithstanding that by these means safer results 
have been obtained and brought into use, from the rapid advance of 
mechanical contrivance, the moving parts of machinery are being daily 
subjected to untried and incalculable forces; hence the necessity of uniting 
to former experiments and practice, experiments and contrivances as 
closely analagous to the peculiar circumstances which are found to operate 
so powerfully in deteriorating and destroying that most valuable material 
now under consideration. 

It would be deeply interesting to trace the many changes which have 
taken place in the formation of the various structures, both of cast and 
wrought iron, which have been brought into use during the last fifty years: 
some of these remain to the present, monuments of the skill of their pro- 
jectors, and at the same lime proofs of the soundness of the principles on 
which they have been constructed: on others, causes have been in constant 
operation, gradually reducing the strength of the original mass until they 
have become unfitted for the purposes of their erection. 

In not a few instances these causes of weakness have been detected, 
and proper remedies applied by better arrangement of materials; and, 
in some instances, by the adoption of entire new principles of construc- 

* From the London Artizan, for November. 1850. 

On the Form of Shafts and Axhs. bl 

If our attention is directed to the bridge class of structures, we perceive 
that, previous to the introduction of railways, the more general form was 
the simple arch, which, whether constructed of cast or wrought iron, there 
is left indisputable proof that the arch, as a principle, cannot be excelled, 
either for stability or durability, and that, simply because there are in it 
fewer elements of self-destruction than in any other form or principle which 
has been applied for the like purpose. Hence it is not too much to pre- 
sume, that just in proportion as we leave the principle of the arch, and 
approach that form which necessity, in many cases, has rendered impera- 
tive, we introduce elements which, if not carefully watched, must sooner 
or later prove fatal to the stability of the mass. 

To determine what these elements of self-destruction are, and to what 
extent they are in operation, has lately occupied the highest mathematical 
and practical talent of this kingdom; and they have recorded as the result of 
their experiments and investigation, that to resist the effects of reiterated 
flexure, iron should scarcely be allowed to suffer a deflexion equal to one- 
third of its ultimate deflexion, for should the deflexion reach one-half of 
its ultimate deflexion, fracture will sooner or later take place. It is, there- 
fore, reasonable to conclude that the greater the amount of rigidity it is 
practicable to introduce into structures of this nature, the fewer will be the 
self-destroying elements in operation, and, consequently, the greater their 

These deductions will receive very considerable support from the history 
of the various descriptions of shafting employed in the different manu- 
factories of this country; previous to the introduction of the slide lathe, the 
shafting employed in the spinning manufactories was a constant source of 
vexation and expense; the want of that perfect parallelism which is now 
obtained exposed the shaft to vibration or bending at every revolution; 
the consequence was constant fractures. The same results have been ob- 
served and recorded in reference to the shafting in use in the iron works of 
this district; and if we pass to the main shafts of water wheels, or the 
intermediate shafts of marine engines, we see that what at one period of 
their history was considered good in principle, (viz. — parallel shafts,) 
have had to give place to others, more generally of increased diameter at 
the centre, or if parallel greatly in excess of former practice. Perhaps 
no better case could be selected than that of the intermediate shaft of a 
marine engine to illustrate the subject now before the institution, for 
there might be traced an almost perfect agreement in all the forces which 
act upon that shaft, and on the axles of either engines or carriages on a 

The author of this paper bebig a manufacturer of railway axles, has 
had his attention drawn to the subject of the form of axles for some con- 
siderable time; and from his knowledge of the properties of iron, and his 
observations of the fractures of shafts and axles, has concluded that various 
forms of shafts and axles possess elements of self-destruction— that the 
fractures which take place are generally confined to given parts, and that 
those parts where fracture takes place exhibit errors of mechanical con- 
struction, or errors of mechanical arrangement, when in motion. 

A very extensive course of experiments has been gone through by the 
author, approximating as closely as possible to the forces on axles when 

5S Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

in use; and these have satisfied his mind, that just in proportion as there 
are departures from certain fixed principles of construction in either shafts 
or axles, in the same proportion will be their liability to fracture. 

Before passing to an examination of the experiments, it may assist to a 
more correct elucidation of the subject if the railway axle is viewed as 
having certain relations to a girder in principle. Girders generally have 
their two ends resting on two points of support, and the load is either 
located at fixed distances from the props, or dispersed over the whole 
surface; just so with the axle; it has its points of support and its loaded 
parts, but it is not clearly evident which are the loaded parts and which 
the props. It has been stated that the wheels may be considered the 
props, and the journals the loaded parts; but it is thought that with equal 
propriety the journals may be considered the props, and the wheels the 
loaded parts: if this latter opinion is at all admissible, we then have 
the load brought much nearer the centre of the axle than in the case where 
the journals are considered the loaded parts; and, besides, it brings more 
immediately before us the influence which the inclined bearing surface 
of the wheels will necessarily have in increasing the power of any lateral 
or vertical blow, which the axle will receive through the wheels. It is 
found that the inclined surface of the wheel tire ranges from 1 in 12 to 1 
in 20, and, as a matter of couise, the direct tendency of the wheels under 
a load is to descend that incline, so that every vertical blow which the 
wheels may receive is compounded of two forces, viz.: — the one to crush 
the wheels in the direction of their vertical plane, and the other to move 
the lower parts of the wheels together; it will be seen that these two forces 
have a direct tendency to bend the axle somewhere between the wheels; 
should that yielding or bending extend no farther than one half the elastic- 
limit, if long continued, fracture will ultimately take place; but should the 
elastic limit be exceeded, the axle takes a permanent bend, the wheels 
are then diverted from their vertical plane, and, as a matter of course, 
leave the rails. To demonstrate this is the object of the first experiment. 
An axle reduced in the middle to If inch dia. was placed upon two props 
4 feet 9 inches apart, and loaded in the middle, the utmost of its deflex- 
ion without a permanent set was -232 inches, the load carried 7 tons. 
An axle reduced to 4 inches in the middle, and then placed upon the 
props 4 feet 9 inches apart, its utmost deflexion without a permanent 
set was '281 inches, the load carried 9 tons. Another axle, but parallel, 
4 f 5 g inches diameter, was placed upon the props 4 feet 9 inches apart, 
its utmost deflexion, without a permanent set was *343 inches, the load 
carried 14 tons. Hence, by reducing an axle of 4 r 5 g ins. diameter in the 
middle to 3| inches, its limit of elasticity is reduced from *343 inches to 
•232 inches, and the load, to produce that elasticity, from 14 to 7 tons. 
Fig. 1 shows the position of the wheels to the rails when the bending of 
the axle lias exceeded its elastic limit. 

The object of the second experiment was to ascertain what influence 
the reduction of an axle in the middle would have on its strength to resist 
sudden impact, compared to an unreduced one; this axle was made as 
represented by fig. 2, which shows the end A parallel to the centre 4^ 
inches diameter, and the end B is drawn down from the back of the wheel 
towards the centre, where it is 4 inches diameter. The end A was then 

On the Form of Shafts aniJlxles. 59 

subjected to impact — the relative position of prop and ram was the back 
of the wheel and the neck of the journal, this end received 46 blows of 
the ram, and bent to an angle of 18°. The end B was then subjected to 
impact — the prop and ram in the same relative position, when it bent back 
to an angle of 22° with only 16 blows of the ram, (as shown by the dotted 
lines in fig. 2.) The object of the third experiment was to ascertain what 

Fie. 1. 

Figs. 2 and 3. 


A ,--- 


\ J^JPra 




Fi K . 4. 



influence a shoulder behind the wheel would have on the strengdi of the 
axle at that part, compared to one without a shoulder. Fig. 3 and 4 were 
one axle cut in two, the end E was turned from the neck of the journal, 
leaving a shoulder ^th inch deep as a stop to the wheel; the end F was 
turned from the neck of the journal to the same diameter, but no shoulder 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

left. The end E was subjected to hydraulic pressure, the load being in 
a direct line with the shoulder, when it broke in two with a load of 60 
tons. The end F was subjected in the same way to hydraulic pressure, 
when it bent into the form shown by the dotted lines, with 84 tons. The 
object of the fourth experiment was to ascertain what influence the position 
of the wheel, in relation to the neck of the journal, would have on the 
strength of the journal under impact. Fig. 5 was a piece of an axle with 

Fig. 5. 

a journal taken down at each end; the end G was keyed into a cast iron 
frame, the face of the frame in a line with the neck of the journal, the 
journal was then subjected to the impact of a ram falling 10 feet, when it 
broke off at the 7th blow. The end II was keyed into the cast iron frame 
in the same way, but with the neck of the journal projecting H inches 
from the face of the frame, the journal was then subjected to the impact 
of the same ram falling 10 feet, when it broke at the 24th blow. 

From these experiments, and from the acknowledged deteriorating in- 
fluence of vibration or bending on iron, especially when continued any 
great length of time, it is the author's opinion that neither shafts nor rail- 
way axles ought to be reduced in the middle, but rather, if there is to be 
a departure from the parallel form, they should be made thickest in the 
middle, and thus effectually prevent any vibration or bending whatever; 
for it is the introduction of this principle into almost every description of 
beam and girder, also into the connecting rods of every description of steam 
eno-ine, and into a large quantity of the shafting now in use, that has 
rendered the whole of these articles so superior in point of durability to 
what they were when other principles of form were in use. 

Mr. Thorneycroft gave a further illustration of the paper by reference 
to several specimens of axles which were exhibited to the meeting. Having 
obtained an axle which had a shoulder at both ends, he turned the shoulder 
off one end but left it on the other, and he found that in the instance 
where the shoulder was turned off, it required a pressure of 120 tons to 
break it, and 1-i- inch deflexion; while the other end, where the shoulder 
was not turned~off, broke with a pressure of 105 tons and f of an inch 
deflexion. — Proc. Lond. Inst. Mech. Eng. 

Magnetic and Diamagnetic Condition of Gases.* 

The Bakerian Lecture was delivered yesterday (Nov. 28, 1850) by 
Prof. Faraday to a crowded audience. At this late^period of the month 
we can only glance at the highly interesting investigations laid before the 
Royal Society, reserving a fuller notice for our next number. 

* From the London, Edinburgh, and Dublin Philosophical Magazine, December, 18f>0. 

Magnetic and Diamagnetic Condition of Gases. 61 

One of the conclusions arrived at by the author was, that the motions 
of magnetic and diamagnetic bodies in each other do not appear to re- 
semble those of attraction or repulsion of the ordinary kind, but to be 
of a differential action, dependent perhaps upon the manner in which the 
lines of magnetic force were affected in passing from one to the other 
during their course from pole to pole, the differential action being in or- 
dinary cases between the body experimented with and the medium sur- 
rounding it and the poles. A method of showing this action with the 
gases is described, in which delicate soap-bubbles are made to contain a 
given gas, and then, when held in ihe magnetic field, approach, or are 
driven further off, according as they contain gases, magnetic or diamag- 
netic, in relation to air. Oxygen passes inwards or tends towards the 
magnetic axis, confirming the results formerly described by the author. 

Perceiving that if two like bubbles were set on opposite sides of a 
magnetic core or keeper cut into the shape of an hour-glass, they would 
compensate each other, both for their own diamagnetic matter and for the 
air which they would displace; and that only the contents of the bulbs 
would be virtually in a differential relation to each other, the author 
passed from bubbles of soapy water to others of glass; and then con- 
structed a differential torsion balance, to which these could be attached, 
of the following nature: — A horizontal lever was suspended by cocoon 
silk, and at right angles to the end of one arm was attached a horizontal 
cross-bar, on which, at about 1| inches apart, and equidistant from the 
horizontal lever, were suspended the glass bubbles; and then the whole 
being adjusted so that one bubble should be on one side of the iron core 
and the other on the other side, any difference in their tendency to set 
inwards or outwards from the axial line causes them to take up their 
places of rest at different distances from the magnetic axis; and the power 
necessary to bring them to an equidistant position becomes a measure of 
their relative magnetic or diamagnetic force. 

In the first place different gases were tried against each other, and 
when oxygen was one of them it went inwards, driving every other out- 
wards. The other gases, when compared together, gave nearly equal 
results, and require a more delicate and finished balance to measure and 
determine the amount of their respective forces. 

The author now conceived that he had attained to the long-sought 
power of examining gaseous bodies in relation to the effects of heat and 
the effects of expansion separately; and proceeded to an investigation of 
the latter point. For this purpose he prepared glass bubbles containing 
a full atmosphere, or half an atmosphere, or any other proportion of a 
given gas; having thus the power of diluting it without the addition of 
any other body. The effect was most striking. When nitrogen and 
oxygen bubbles were put into the balance, each at one atmosphere, the 
oxygen drove the nitrogen out powerfully. When the oxygen bubble 
was replaced by other bubbles containing oxygen, the tendency inwards 
of the oxygen was less powerful; and when what may be called an oxy- 
gen vacuum (being a bulb filled with oxygen, exhausted, and then her- 
metically sealed) was put up, it simply balanced the nitrogen bubble. 
Oxygen at half an atmosphere was less magnetic than that at one atmos- 
phere, but more magnetic than other oxygen at one-third of an atmos- 

Vot. XXI.— TiiittD Sjsbies.— No. 1.— Januakt, 1851. 6 

62 Mechanics, Physics, and Cliemistry. 

phere; and that at one-third surpassed the vacuum. In fact, the bubble 
with its contents was more magnetic in proportion to the oxygen it con- 
tained. On the other hand, nitrogen showed no difference of this kind; 
whether a bubble contained that gas more or less condensed, its power 
was the same. Other gases (excepting olefiant and cyanogen) seemed in 
this first rough apparatus to be in the same condition. 

Hence the author decides upon the place for zero, and concludes that 
simple space presents that case. When matter is added to space it car- 
ries its own property with it there, adding either magnetic or diamagnetic 
force to the space so occupied in proportion to the quantity of matter 
employed; and now thinking that the point of zero is well determined, 
he concludes to use the word magnetic as a general term, and distiguish 
the two classes of magnetic bodies into paramagnetic and diamagnetic 

TJie Flax Manufacture. — Steeping Superseded, and the Fibre adapted to 
Cotton Spinning Machinery* 

One of the greatest obstacles which has hitherto stood in the way of 
an extended cultivation of flax, viz., that of the trouble, delay, and ex- 
pense attendant upon its steeping, in order to prepare it for the market, 
has now been removed, by an invention which entirely dispenses with 
that process, and enables the grower at the smallest possible cost to send 
his fibre into the market. By this process, of which Mr. Donlan is the 
inventor, the results are obtained by a combination of chemical and me- 
chanical means, and as it avoids all the expenses connected with steep- 
ing, the fibre may be prepared at a cost considerably below that incurred 
in the present process, and may be made, we are assured, applicable 
either for fabrics of the coarseness of nail bags or canvas, or of the fine- 
ness of the most beautiful Brussels lace. But not only is the expense 
considerably less, but the time consumed in the preparation of the fibre, 
which, by the old process, ranges from ten days to three weeks, does 
not exceed as many hours by the unsteeped mode. It also possesses a 
vast superiority on account of the extreme simplicity of the means adopted, 
which may be made intelligible to, and performed by, a mere child. But 
by far the most important and valuable part of this invention is, that it 
produces a fibre perfectly clean, and in its natural state, without any of 
the stains or impurities which necessarily attach themselves to the fibre 
during the process of steeping, and it also possesses the advantage of 
securing that regularity and uniformity of strength which to a greater or 
less extent is wanting in the steeped fibre. Application has been made 
for a charter of incorporation for a company which will be prepared to 
purchase the flax produced upon 100,000 acres in Ireland, at \2l. per 
acre, and to prepare it for the market in cases where the grower may not 
possess the necessary facilities for preparing it himself. 

The uniformity of strength and freedom from stain or impurity which 
exists in the flax prepared by the unsteeped process, has, within the last 
four days, led to the practical demonstration of an invention, of the value 
* From the London Mechanic's Magazine, for November, 1850. 

Improvements in the Flax Manufacture. 63 

and importance of which, to the agriculturists and manufacturers of this 
country, it is impossible to form any adequate idea, and which consists, 
among other things, of the adaptation of the flax fibre to cotton ma- 
chinery. The patentee of this invention is M. Le Chevalier P. Claussen, 
member of the Brazilian Institute, well known as the inventor of the 
circular loom, and by his collections of objects of natural history and 
plants of South America in the British Museum, and in the Museum at 
Paris. We had placed in our hands a quantity of flax rovings and yarns 
spun upon cotton machinery by the inventor, and we have had an op- 
portunity of personally inspecting at Manchester the whole process con- 
nected with the invention, and the result has fully convinced us of its 
practicability. The finest portion of the yarn spun, in our opinion, and 
we were confirmed in it by a gentleman of great experience and long 
connexion with the cotton trade, was equal in fineness to 120's cotton, 
the coarsest being equal to 50's. The application of such a test as that 
of 120's for the first time was certainly a most severe one; the result, 
however, was perfectly successful. A slight difficulty arose at first with 
the machinery, in consequence of the length of the fibre; this, however, 
was easily obviated by a slight alteration in the position of one of the 
rollers. As the fibre, however, may be prepared to any length, there 
will be no necessity in future for even this alteration, the existing cotton 
machinery being perfectly adapted for the purpose of spinning flax pre- 
pared according to the process patented by M. Claussen. 

The patent granted to M. Claussen for England, is for the preparation 
of flax in a short staple, so as to produce a substitute for wool and cotton 
capable of being spun upon cotton machinery, and also for the mixture 
of the materials thus obtained, which can be carded together with silk,' 
cotton, or wool, or separately, as cotton for spinning into yarns. The 
right is also secured for preparing long fibre as a substitute for silk, for 
bleaching in the preparation of materials for spinning and felting, and 
also in yarns and felts. The inventor does not, however, confine him- 
self to flax for the purpose of producing a fibre adapted to his purpose, 
but states that he can obtain similar results from hemp, jute, Chinese 
grass, and, to use his own expression, from "an old tar rope, or a bam- 
boo cane." 

As the patents are not yet secured for several continental states, we 
are not at liberty to state the nature of the process, or the means adopted 
for the purpose of bringing the fibre into the required state. We may 
state, however, that from \\ cwt. of the flax fibre prepared and cleaned 
upon the unsteeped process, 1 cwt. of a substance, identical with clean 
cotton, can be produced at a cost for material of less than half a crown. 
The cost of manual or mechanical labor required in its preparation, in- 
cluding the expense of bleaching, an operation performed in a few se- 
conds, does not amount to more than seven-sixteenths of a penny per 

The mixture of the two substances, viz., wool with flax reduced to a 
short staple, forms a fabric exceedingly durable, while its cost may be 
judged by the fact, that while wool costs 4s. 6rf., the flax prepared and 
ready for spinning may be obtained for 6d. per pound, so that with flax 

64 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

and wool spun together in equal quantities, the cost would be reduced 
by nearly one-half. 

But although the inventor has obtained a patent for the preparation of 
a fibre as a substitute for cotton, he does not indulge the visionary and 
impracticable idea of being able to drive cotton out of the markets, his 
object being simply to provide a substitute for low cottons, in the manu- 
facture of a variety of fabrics in which that valuable and over-wrought 
material now forms a part. In a branch of our trade, however, for the 
supply of which upwards of 770,000,000 lbs. of cotton were last year 
imported, it is not too much to suppose that there exists ample room for 
the consumption of very large supplies of home-grown flax, while the 
facilities which are now found to exist for carding and spinning together 
flax and wool, must also tend to open up new sources of demand among 
the manufacturers of Leeds and Bradford. — Morning Chronicle, Nov. 14. 

On the Consumption of Smoke from Furnaces and Chimnies — Abatement 
of the Smoke Nuisance* 

The Town Council of Manchester are pushing to a practical test their 
powers (under a local act) of compelling the manufacturers to consume 
the smoke of their furnaces. A report of the Council's sub-committee 
on the subject contains this very encouraging summary of their successes: 
"In conclusion, your sub-committee congratulate the committee upon 
the fact, that, in many instances, chimnies which were at one time the 
worst in the borough, and which almost incessantly emitted dense smoke, 
are now amongst the best; and upon the still more important and signi- 
ficant fact, that your sub-committee have obtained the favorable opinion 
of mill-owners generally as to the practicability of preventing smoke at 
what are termed heavy mills, and that such prevention can be secured 
without loss. In several instances, parties who had most strongly ex- 
pressed an opposite opinion, have with evident pleasure assured your 
sub-committee that they no longer entertain any doubt as to the practica- 
bility of preventing smoke, but also that such a happy change may be 
attained, if not with considerable economy, at any rate without loss." 
Councillor Howarth added these interesting details — 
"He lately waited on Mr. Hugh Beaver, and ascertained that the 
quantity of coal formerly used per week in his manufactory was 78 tons, 
whilst by the consumption of smoke and the improvement consequent 
on the adoption of the system, a weekly saving is effected of 28 tons. 'I 
visited Messrs. George Clarke & Sons' manufactory,' continued Mr. 
Howarth, 'and they told me the saving they effected by consuming the 
smoke from their fires was upwards of 40 tons per week. They formerly 
used 140 tons per week, now they consume less than 100 tons. They 
have expended upwards of 1200/. on new boilers to their steam-engines, 
in order to abate the smoke nuisance; and they expect the outlay will be 
repaid by the saving of coal effected in a year and a half.' " 
The local correspondent of a London journal observes — 
"No one who has visited this town recently, and who recollects the dense 

•From the London Mechanic's Magazine, for November, 1850. 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. "65 

clouds of smoke which overhung the borough, but must make a very- 
pleasing comparison in favor of the present appearance and condition of 
our streets; and it is not less encouraging to find, from a statement made 
this morning by Mr. Councillor Howarth, that all this improvement has 
been effected not only without loss but to the positive advantage of the 
manufacturers. It is unquestionable that our manufacturers at the outset 
thought this legislative interference a great hardship; indeed, when sum- 
moned before magistrates, it has not been unusual to urge that the miti- 
gation of this nuisance was a delusion, and that the consumption of smoke 
was utterly impossible." 


Proceedings of the Stated Monthly Meeting, December 19, 1850. 

S. V. Merrick, President, in the chair. 

Thomas Fletcher, Vice President. 

Isaac B. Garrigues, Recording Secretary. 

John F. Frazer, Treasurer. 

The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. 

Letters were read from Messrs. Fox, Henderson & Co., London, and 
John M. Bernhisel, Esq., City of New York. 

Donations were received from Lieut. W. Reid, London, through W. 
C. Redfield, Esq.; Messrs. Fox, Henderson &Co., London; Hon. Joseph 
R. Chandler, U. S. Congress; Messrs. Wm. E. Morris, E. D. Ingraham, 
and Frederick Fraley, Philadelphia. 

The periodicals received in exchange for the Journal of the Institute 
were laid on the table. 

The Treasurer's statement of the receipts and payments for the month 
of November was read. 

The Board of Managers and the Standing Committees reported their 

The Committee on Exhibitions reported the following resolutions in re- 
lation to the subjects referred to them by the Institute at its last meeting: 

Resolved, That this Committee recommend to the Institute to award to Messrs. Cornelius 
& Co., of Philadelphia, a Recall Gold Premium, for the Lamps and Gas Fixtures made 
and deposited by them at the late Exhibition. 

Resolved, That by our printed circulars, and the same as published in the daily papers, 
we have advised all depositors that the Institute will not be responsible for any articles 
deposited at our Exhibition, therefore, with regret, we are compelled to deny the claim for 
■$10, for the Tidy deposited by Mr. T. Bonney, and lost. 

The same Committee also presented the following report: 

That they have revised their report of the late Exhibition, and have awarded to 
No. 2611. Composition Marble Mantels, Slabs, and Ornamental Work, made by Thos. 
W. Dufrene, of Philadelphia, A Recall First Premium. 

No. 2603-4-5. Composition Statuary and Figures, made by Edward Dufrene, Phila- 
delphia, A Recall First Premium. 


66 Franklin Institute. 

A report from the Committee on the School of Design for Women was 

On motion, a Recall Gold Premium was awarded to Messrs. Corne- 
lius & Co. 

Resignations of membership in the Institute (3) were read and ac- 

Candidates for membership in the Institute (7) were proposed, and 
those proposed at the last meeting (149) were elected members of the In- 

On motion, it was 

Resolved, That the first resolution of the Institute, for the establishment of the School 
of Design for Women, be altered by substituting the words 'Treasurer of the School Com- 
mittee' in place of 'Treasurer of the Franklin Institute,' where it occurs in the 5th line of 
the printed copies of the resolutions. 

Resolved, That the President be authorized to appoint ten ladies and ten gentlemen a 
Committee of Visiters to the School of Design for Women. 

Resolved, That the Committee on Publications present a copy of the Journal of the In- 
stitute to the Territory of Utah, agreeably to the request of J. M. Bernhisel, Esq., read 
this evening. 

Nominations were made of persons to be voted for at the Annual Elec- 
tion for Officers, Managers, and Auditors, to be held in January next. 
On motion, it was 

Resolved, That the Annual Election for Officers, Managers, and Auditors, for the ensu- 
ing year, be held on Thursday, January 16, 1851, between the hours of 3j and 8 o'clock, 
and that seven members be appointed a Committee to receive the votes of the members 
and report the result. 

The Committee were appointed. 

Mr. William D. Parrish called the attention of the meeting to the ex- 
plosion of a steam boiler which recently occurred in Broad street, above 
Vine, Philadelphia. The explosion took place upwards, carrying off the 
head of the boiler (which was of cylindrical form, about 4 feet in diameter, 
and placed in the upright position) entire — the line of fracture following 
exactly the angle of the flanch with scarcely any variation, blowing off the 
circular head of the boiler, and leaving the fianch attached to the case of 
the boiler. This head was carried to the height of several hundred feet 
into the air, and fell in Broad street, about 100 yards from the boiler. The 
roof of the building and the adjoining walls were scattered in all directions, 
but no one was injured, although several workmen were employed at the 
time very near the boiler, and there were a number of dwellings in the 

The bottom part of the boiler contained the fire-box, say 38 inches in 
diameter, which was surrounded by a water leg of about 4 or 5 inches, 
the fire-hole opening through the leg in the usual manner. On the crown 
of the fire-box four vertical smoke flues, of about 9 inches diameter, were 
riveted, passing up into a circular smoke-box corresponding in diameter 
with the fire-box, and leaving a water space around it of about A\ inches. 
One side of this smoke-box was elongated and riveted to the shell of the 
boiler, thus forming a smoke-pipe passing through the water space, which 
conducted the hot air into a brick flue of about 4 inches surrounding the 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 67 

toiler, and distributing the heat over its exterior surface from the point of 
entrance to the top of the boiler, covering part of the water surface and 
nearly the whole steam surface. From this brick flue an iron pipe con- 
ducted the heat to the smoke stack. 

The head of the boiler was made of boiler iron, near f-in. thick, with 
a flanch turned to fit the inside of the casing, and riveted to it. The 
man-hole and safety valve were in this head, and it had been secured by 
17 stay-bolts distributed over its surface, which passed down and were 
secured to the crown of the smoke-box. 

The boiler had been in use about two years prior to the accident. Two 
gauge-cocks were placed about 8 or 10 inches above the crown of the 
smoke-box. The safety valve lever was found much bent, but the valve 
and valve seat were lost. From inquiry, however, as to the size of the 
valve, &c, and observation of the diameter of the pipe, it was believed 
that, with the weight at the end of the lever, it would require a pressure 
of 160 lbs. to the square inch to raise the valve. The engine was repre- 
sented as being overtasked, requiring all the steam the boiler could make 
to do her work, and the explosion occurred during a temporary stoppage 
for the adjustment of some of the machinery, when the boiler was under 
her working pressure and generating steam rapidly. 

There was no evidence of water having been low in the boiler at the 
time of the accident, but I was convinced that there had been much care- 
lessness at times by the person having charge of the engine, as it was ad- 
mitted that extra weights, such as pokers, had been hung upon the safety 
valve lever on former occasions, although it was stated not to have been 
done recently. On examination of the iron flanch of the head of the 
boiler, it was found to be very brittle, and there is little doubt that the 
angle of the iron was defective at the time the boiler was made, or had 
been rendered so by the unequal strains to which the head had been sub- 
jected, and it was evident by the examination of those stay-bolts which 
were found, that many of them had been useless for a longtime, showing 
as they did, very few recent fractures. 

Dr. Turnbull presented to the meeting two beautiful specimens of 
Oxide of Zinc Paint, dry and in oil, one specimen manufactured by the 
New Jersey Company, from the zinc ore found in Sussex county, N. J.; 
the second made by Leclaire, of Paris. An oral communication was 
made by him on the subject of its being perfectly harmless, and not 
causing any of the attacks resulting from white lead on the human body, 
and other serious dangers to workmen making or using it, or to persons 
inhabiting newly painted rooms. It is a purer white, covers as well 
as the first quality white lead, and does not require a greater number of 
coats. He exhibited specimens of the paint on glass, and compared it 
with the finest white lead. The price, at present, is double that of lead, 
but, on account of its lightness, it will cover a much larger surface. 

The New Jersey specimen was as white as the French, and sold at a 
less price, they having improved very much in its manufacture since last 
March, at which time he brought the subject before the Institute, the lot 
marked No. 3 being one obtained from them at that time. 

The oxide of zinc paint will be found a most admirable article along 

68 Bibliographical Notices. 

the sea coast, not being changed by the agents which destroy the white 
lead, for when acted upon by hydrochloric acid and hydrosulphuret of 
ammonia it was not altered in color, while the white lead becomes black 
or brown. It is not changed by sulphurous exhalations so common in 
cities; it preserves its whiteness in coffee houses, theatres, laboratories^ 
stables, &c; also in vessels, notwithstanding the gas arising from the hold. 
Mastics can be obtained with the oxide of zinc, either in oil or water, su- 
perior to those made of white lead, and it is now used in the large es- 
tablishment of the Messrs. Merrick & Son, particularly for the seams in 

This paint acquires a hardness which permits a very fine polish, being 
a most admirable covering for all kinds of metallic surfaces, and resisting 
the action of the air. 

It is well adapted to artistic painting in oil, water, wax, or water colors, 
and permits the drawing of the finest lines. 

Mode of .Applying the Zinc Paint. — It is used exactly like white lead 
on new wood, plaster, stucco, metal, &c, only the workmen must be care- 
ful to wash the vessels or brushes previously used for white lead with 
spirits, not to keep the paint tog thifk, and to bear on the brush with less 
strength. The zinc being impalpable, grinding is not necessary. To 
paint with varnish, resin, or spirits, the zinc ought to be ground first in 
spirits of turpentine. 

The siccative or dryer based on lead should not be used, but a man- 
ganesed drying oil, which is manufactured for this paint, must be added 
to it, in the proportion of from three to six per cent, of the oil used. 


TJie Progress of the Development of the Law of Sto?-ms, and of the Variable 
Winds, with Practical Application oftlie, Subject to Navigation; illustrated 
by charts and wood cuts. By Lievt. Col. Reid, C.B., F. R. S. London: 
John Weale. 1849. 

The theory maintained by Col. Reid in regard to the great storms being 
of a vortical nature has long attracted the attention of meteorologists and 
elicited much discussion. Whatever may be the correctness of the theory, 
its originator (Mr. Redfield) and himself deserve the credit of having 
earnestly labored to deduce practical value from it, and, if we are to be- 
lieve the numerous and constantly increasing records of accidents encoun- 
tered or avoided by vessels, with no little success. In the present volume 
additional details of great interest are given upon this subject, and the 
whole matter copiously illustrated by diagrams and charts, shewing the 
indications by which the commander may recognize the approach of a 
storm, its position in reference to him, and the direction of its progress, 
and the proper course to be pursued in order to avoid as far as possible 
its evil effects, as well as to shorten their voyages. It would appear that 

Manufacture of Iron in Pennsylvania. 69 

the British Government and their marine are fully aware of the importance 
of these views, and that the French are following them inattention to the 
same subject. What part our own government officers may have taken, 
or may now be taking, in this most important inquiry, does not appear, 
but from its paramount value to our commerce, we suppose it cannot have 
escaped the practical attention either of Mr. Bache or Lieut. Maury, and 
by their assistance we may soon hope to see the subject still farther eluci- 
dated. F. 

Chemical Experiments, Illustrating the Theory, Practice, and Application 
of the Science of Chemistry. By G. Francis, F. L. S. Anew and im- 
proved edition. Philadelphia: Daniels & Smith. 1850. 

This is a new, and claims to be an improved, edition of a very valuable 
and unpretending treatise. The "novelties and improvements" are some- 
what hard to discover, for, upon a rapid comparison with the London 
edition of 1845, it appears to be an exact reprint, if not a mere re-issue, 
with a new title page. The treatise, however, has been written for the 
purpose of exciting and encouraging young experimenters to inquire into 
the apparent mysteries of chemistry, and contains a great number of well- 
devised and well-described experiments, the apparatus for, and method 
of, performing which are fully illustrated by plain wood cuts. The ap- 
paratus recommended is such as is, for the most part, cheap and easily 
procured, and in many cases can be made by the experimenter for him- 
self. The experiments are, however, intended to be made on a small 
scale, the advantages of which the mothers of the novices, and others 
compelled to reside in the same houses with them, will no doubt duly 
appreciate. Besides these, the book contains descriptions of interesting 
processes, such as photography and the Daguerreotype, and recipes for 
the compounding of savory and comforting stomachic appliances, such 
as soda water, lemonade, and ginger beer, which being simply and in 
proper proportions set down, and without quackery, add decidedly to the 
value of the book. To those who will get it on our recommendation, it 
will prove a volume full of amusement and equally fraught with good 
instruction. F. 

Documents relating to the Manufacture of Iron in Pennsylvania. Published 
on behalf of the Convention of Iron Masters, which met in Philadelphia 
on December 20, 1849. 

We have had the pleasure of examining a volume of some 115 pages, 
sold by Lindsay & Blakiston, Philadelphia, bearing the above title, and 
deem it eminently worthy of a notice in our Journal. It contains a great 
amount of practical information on the state of the iron manufacture in 
our commonwealth, and some important details of the cost of producing 
the article both at home and abroad. A Convention of Iron Masters re- 


Bibliographical Notices. 

siding in the State, which assembled in Philadelphia in 1849, appears to 
have authorized this publication by a general committee, -and while our 
position compels us to abstain from the expression of any opinion on the 
purely political arguments contained in the memorial, &c, we deem it 
right to say, that a vast number of facts have been brought together by 
the committee which will furnish abundant matter for reflection to the 
political economists of both the free trade and protective schools. Addi- 
tional value is given to the statistics furnished in the book, from the fact 
that the gentlemen compiling them are, almost without exception, actu- 
ally engaged in the manufacture of iron. From the tables contained -in 
our present number, and which by the kindness of the committee we are 
enabled to give to our readers, some idea may be formed of the magnitude 
and importance of the interest intended to be promoted by the dissemina- 
tion of such matter. The whole book is well and lucidly prepared, and 
contains numerous diagrams and schedules, showing the great fluctuations 
to which both the domestic and foreign production are subject. We 
commend it to the perusal of our readers generally, and have no doubt 
that it will yield them the same pleasure we have enjoyed in following 
the committee through their luminous array of facts and figures. F. 

Explanations referring to the following Tables. 

* * * The facts thus collected are contained in a condensed form in the following 
fifteen tabular statements, the first eight of which comprise all the works in the State east 
of the Allegheny Mountain, and the last seven those west of that mountain. The results 
shown by the tables may be briefly summed up as follows: 

The total number of counties in the State is . . 62 

Of these the number now containing Iron Works is * 42 

The number containing no Iron Works, 


Of these seventeen counties, however, nine contain abundance of iron ore and coal, but 
•owing to the absence of any cheap road to market, they yet remain untouched, leaving 
only eight counties, of sixty-two in the State, not suited to the manufacture of iron. 

Production of Iron from the Ore. 

The following table shows the number of Furnaces of each sort and of Bloomeries in 
the State; the capital invested in land, buildings, and machinery; their present capacity; 
the actual make in 1847 and 1849, and the probable make of 1850, respectively. 








is bo f Anthracite Coal, 
»- •£ Bituminous Coal, 

f I i Coke > 

"1 g 1 Charcoal hot blast, 

5) t " cold 







































Manufacture of Iron in Pennsylvania. 

'Conversion of Cast into Wrought Iron. 


The following table shows the number of Forges and Rolling Mills in the State; the 
investment in lands, buildings, and machinery; the total number of converting fires and 
their capacity per annum, and their make in 1847 and 1849. 



f g 


Capacity. . , „._ 
n f - make 1817. 
1 ons. m 

1 ons. 


make 1849. 


Charcoal forges, 
Rolling Mills, 







174,4 Of 





402 436 




* 402 fires at 125 tons per fire per annum. 

f 436 furnaces at 400 tons per furnace per annum. 

The total number of Nail Machines in the Slate is 606. The annual production of 
each machine averages 1000 kegs of 100 lbs. each, making 606,000 kegs, or 30,300 tons 
a year. Of the product of the Forges two-thirds are sold in the form of blooms to the 
Rolling Mil!s, and are manufactured into boiler plates, horse shoe rods, and bars for the 
manufacture of scythes, axes, edge tools, and cutlery, and other articles requiring a high 
polish. The remaining one-third is sold in the form of hammered bar iron in competition 
with Swedish and Russian iron. 

The Conversion of Iron into Steel. 

The following is a list of all the Works in the State engaged in the conversion of Steel: 


Situation of Works. 


Amount annually 




' Philadelphia, 


Jas. Rowland & Co., 





J. Robbins, 







Earp & Brink, 




Robert S. Johnson, 




W. & H. Rowland, 




R. & G. D. Coleman, 



L York, 


R. W. & W. Coleman, 



r Allegheny, 


Singer, Hartman & Co., 




Coleman, Hailman & Co., 




Jones & Quigg, 




Spang & Co., 




G. & J. H. Schoenberger, 




S. McKelvy,* 

Total tons, 



* These works have only been in operation six months. 44 tons of the above amount 
is cast steel. 

The total number of Iron Works of all kinds in the State is 504 

The capital invested in lands, buildings, and machinery, $20,502,076 

The number of men employed, .... 30,103 

The number of horses employed, .... 13,562 

The capital invested includes only such lands and buildings as belong to the Iron Master, 
and such as arc directly dependent on the Iron Works for their value. 

Thus the value of farms, grist and saw mills, and similar property, horses, wagons, tools, 
and the like, and the dwellings of workmen near large cities, are excluded, because, though 
belonging to the works, they have an independent value. 

72 Bibliographical Notices. 

The value of all coal land has been also excluded, both for the reason just given, and 
because it is the custom throughout the State, with very few exceptions, to purchase coal 
delivered at the works. The capital, and men, and horses employed in mining and trans- 
porting this coal to the works, and in transporting the finished iron to market, have also 
been excluded from the above account, because sufficient data were not in my possession 
for more than a conjectural estimate. 

More than one-half of the Anthracite Furnaces, and a portion of the Charcoal Furnaces, 
purchase their ore of the farmers in their vicinity, who dig it on their farms and haul it to 
the furnaces in the winter, and at other times when they are not more particularly occu- 
pied with their agricultural labors. There are other large and valuable ore banks in the 
State which belong to parties who work them and sell the ore to furnaces in their vicinity. 
The value of all these ore banks, and the number of laborers employed at them, are ex- 
cluded from the above account, which comprises only such real estate as belongs to per- 
sons in the iron business, and is indispensably requisite to carry on such business — and 
the number of men and horses directly employed by them. 

The number of men thus engaged, over and above those reported to me as in the pay 
of the Iron Manufacturers, may be very nearly approximated by reference to tables A and 
B, pages 89 and 91 in the communication of S. J. Reeves, Esq., on the elementary cost 
of making pig and bar iron. On the basis of these tables I have calculated the number of 
laborers not in the pay of the Iron Masters, but directly dependent on the Iron Works for 
support, to be 7081 for the Blast Furnaces, and 4432 for the Rolling Mills, Forges, &c.; 
making together 1 1,513 to be added to the number above stated, or a grand total of 41,616 
men dependent on the iron business in the State. Allowing five persons to each laborer, 
we have a population of 208,080 persons, or about one-tenth of the entire population of 
the State, dependent on the manufacture of iron. 

The consumption of fuel in all the Iron Works of the State in 1847 was as follows: 

Anthracite coal, 483,000 tons, at an average value of $3 per ton, -$1,449,000 
Bituminous coal, 9,007,600 bushels, at 5c., . . . 450,380 

Wood, 1,490,252 cords, at $2,* ..... 2,980,504 

Total value, ..... $4,879,884 

The ton of iron is always the gross ton of . . . 2240 lbs. 

Except Blooms und Puddled Bar, which are bought and sold by the Ankoney 

or double gross ton of ..... . 2464 " 

And Nails, which are sold by the net ton of ... . 2000 " 

Anthracite Coal is sold by the gross ton .... 2240 '* 

Bituminous Coal by the bushel of . . . . . 80 " 

In the statement of the Blast Furnaces, in the column headed "kind of ore used," 

H signifies Brown Hematite ore. 

M " Magnetic ore. 

F " Fossiliferous Red Oxide or Fossil ore. 

C " Argillaceous Carbonate. 

B " Bog ore. 
In the column headed "Blast — Tuyeres — Diam.," the figures represent the diameter of 
the blowing nozzles. 

In the column headed "Pressure," the figures represent the pressure to the square inch 
in pounds avoirdupois. 

In the column headed "Market," 

"E" means Philadelphia. 

«"W» « Pittsburg. 

"H" " Home — or the vicinity of the works. 
In the column headed "kind of metal made," 

1 signifies coarse grey or best foundry iron. 

2 " close grey iron. 

3 " mottled and white iron, or hard iron. 

In some instances there are figures in the column headed "Situation, Post Office," where 
such occur they signify the distance of the works from the Post Office. 

The Hot Blast Furnaces which have dates assigned them prior to 1830, were built for 
Cold Blast Furnaces, and have been since changed to Hot Blast. 

* This value is intended to include the cost of converting into Charcoal, (the form in which it is generally 
consumed,) and delivering at the furnace. It would be equivalent to five cents a bushel as the average 
value of Charcoal. 







FEBRUARY, 1851. 


Improvements of the River Seine. By Geo. R. Burnell.* 

Some very important works are in progress at present upon the river 
Seine, for the improvement of the navigation of that river, a succinct ac- 
count of which is appended. 

The Seine has a very long devious course, principally through a valley 
in the tertiary limestones of the Paris basin, and through the chalk between 
Mantes and the sea. It is very subject to floods in the winter and spring, 
which come down from the hills of Burgundy with considerable violence; 
whilst in the summer it is often so low that, as in 1842, the navigation 
by barges drawing 4 feet water is suspended. The tide runs to a little 
beyond Pont de l'Arche, a distance of perhaps GO miles. 

Owing to the configuration of the embouchure a bar is formed at 
Quillebceuf and Tancarville, at a point where the river — which had pre- 
viously spread out on both sides over aflat alluvial plain, sometimes bare 
at high tides — is contracted between two advancing spurs of the chalk 
formation. Formerly the regime thus superinduced was such as to give 
rise to a "bore" of about 3 to 4 feet high occasionally; but at neap tides 
there was never enough water on the bar to allow a 400 tons' burden ship 
to mount the river, although directly the stream became narrowed above 
Villequier, sufficient depth to float even a 1000 ton ship existed at high 

The objects proposed then were to deepen the river so as to allow large 
vessels to reach Rouen, and to establish such a system of locks, &c, in 
the upper portion, as to ensure a constant depth of G ft. 6 in. in the driest 
* From the London Architect, September, 1850. 

Vol. XXL— Third Series.— No. 2.— Ferruart, 1851. 7 

74 Civil Engineering. 

seasons as far as Paris. The works already executed have succeeded 
most remarkably in the attainment of these objects as far as they bore 
upon them. They are as follows: — 

Tidal Portion. — Up to August, 1850, they had been confined to the 
embankment of the river between Candebecto Villequier andQuillebceuf, 
by means of rubble-stone embankments of length of 18,000 metres on the 
right bank, and of 9600 on the left bank. At the point where the works 
commenced the channel was made 300 metres (1000 feet) wide; and it 
was augmented 10 metres in a kilometre, or in the ratio 1 : 100 to the 
embouchure. The concave embankment was found to require twice as 
much stone as that upon the convex side, the former taking 100 metres 
cube, the latter 50 metres cube, per metre forward. 

The result has been to deepen the river 2-80 metres (a little more than 
9 feet). The "bore" has disappeared in the parts regularised; the length 
of the duration of the flood tide increased one hour; the still water, or dead 
tide, has also gained a quarter of an hour. The flood would be sent much 
further up the country did not the stone thrown to protect the feet of the 
piers of the M anoir Bridge, on the Rouen and Paris Railway, act as a dam 
to keep it back. It is probable that the result of the works in the river 
upon this bridge will be to throw it down. 

The total cost of the embankments has been hitherto 2,310,000 francs, 
or 92,400/. sterling, being at the rate of 3 francs the metre cube of stone 
in place. 

To complete the project, it would be necessary to execute above Can- 
debec and la Meilleraie 5122 metres of embankment on the right, and 
8700 upon the left shore. Below Quilleboeuf it is proposed to continue 
the channel through the sandbanks of the embouchure, by the execution 
of 12.540 metres on the right bank, and 9600 upon the left. 

Natural Water Course above Tides. — The system adopted for the at- 
tainment of the depth required in this portion, has been to erect a series of 
barrages or weirs upon the river, so as to divert the water into the arm 
rendered navigable, and to leave an overflow under the control of the 
locksman at the head of the pond or reach. 

The weirs are formed according to the plan so successfully applied by 
M. Poiree at Bezons, consisting of a series of wrought iron frames with 
wooden blades to close the openings, fixed by hand; the wing walls are 
in stone, and dressed off at a level to allow any flood-water to overflow at 
6 inches above the depth required in the lock, should any sudden flood 
come down by night. The locks are made 120 metres long by 12 metres 
wide (400 feet by 40 feet), and a fall of 2 metres, or 6 ft. 7 in. nearly. 

Originally it was proposed to form at least ten of these barrages. The 
first is formed in Paris itself, and is actually in course of execution; the 
river is being inclosed to a w r idth of 32 metres in the narrowest part, be- 
ginning from the extremity of the Isle de la Cite, and terminating at the 
extremity of "terre Plein" of the Pont Neuf. The wing walls of the dam 
are dressed off at a height to secure 2-16 metres water; the barrage is 
meant to heap them up to 2-26 metres; but of course before arriving at this 
height, some of the blades would be drawn. Quay walls and roads, with 
inclined approaches from the upper level, are being formed; a large culvert, 
2*50 metres wide by 2-50 metres from invert to key, is also constructed 

Veritilation. 75 

to take off the lateral sewers to a level below the locks. These works 
are estimated to cost 200,000/. sterling. 

Connected with these works may be cited the lowering of the roadway 
of the Pont Neuf, to cost 72,000/. The old arches are cut away where 
necessary, and replaced by new arches of an elliptical form, the space be- 
tween the new and old work, where any exists, being filled-in with hy- 
draulic lime concrete. The scaffolding employed is very remarkable, 
being in fact a suspension scaffolding, hanging from the turrets on the 
piers of the bridge. Indeed, it would be impossible to imagine how works 
could be so carefully, so perfectly, and so elaborately executed, as all these 
are, unless by French engineers, working with government money. 

Other barrages have been executed at Bezons, Andresy, and Vernon; 
one at les Poses, near Pont de PArche, is in course of execution. Barrages 
are to be formed immediately at St. Ouen Meulan; others are proposed at 
Suresnes, Maisons, Triel, and perhaps others below Meulan. 

The barrage executed at Bezons, at a cost of 70,U00/., gave a sur- 
elevation of 120 metres (4 feet) at a distance of 7^ miles from the locks, 
the fall of the river being on the average 0-10 per kilometre, or 1 in 10-000. 
The heaping-up of the waters by the barrage of Andresy is felt in the Seine 
and Oise, at a distance of 20 kilometres, or 12? r miles. 

At some future day I will send you drawings of the barrage of Bezons, 
which will illustrate the very simple, but efficient means employed on this 
river, to canalise it completely. 

Southampton, Oct. 23, 1850. 

Ventilation. 11 

Sir John Walsham has devised a very simple plan for ventilating work- 
houses, and which has been most effectual in the several unions where it 
has been introduced, and would, no doubt, be equally available for hos- 
pitals, factories, or workhouses. It consists of zinc tubes, three inches in 
diameter, perforated at the sides, towards the bottom, with holes of T ' 3 th of 
an inch diameter, which are carried across the ceiling of the room, sus 
pended by hooks, and taken through the walls to the open air, where they 
terminate in perforated convex ends, provided with caps, hung by a small 
chain, to cover the end most exposed to the wind in extremely cold 
weather. Three tubes will suffice for a room 23 feet by 16, or in that 
proportion for large apartments, intervals of about 10 feet in the length 
of the room being ordinarily the just medium. They can be fixed at bd. 
per foot run. Mr. Bridgham, master of the Loddon union-house, describes 
them as most beneficial, particularly in the sleeping rooms. "The inmates 
are much pleased with them — many were fearful they would take cold from 
them; they are now satisfied that there is not any draft occasioned in the 
room by them. 1 ' In the Bishop Stortford union, "in a sick ward, with 
cases of a loathsome and offensive kind, tainting the air to such an almost 
incredible extent that few gentlemen of the committee would go into it, 
the effect was so good, that the guardians gave an order to ventilate the 
whole house." 

• From the London Architect, for Noveinher, 1850. 


Construction of the Roof of the Great Exhibition Building* 

In our last number we made some remarks in reference to the ultimate 
stability of the building, which have, we are glad to learn, been carefully 
weighed by the authorities, and are likely to meet with attention. Indeed, 
it is only by careful consideration in the beginning that eventual evils can 
be successfully precluded, and satisfactory grounds be laid for public con- 
fidence in a new r and untried undertaking, in the prosecution of which to 
completion the national reputation is now at stake. We must neither 
leave off in our progress, nor must we carry it on to subject ourselves to 

In the following semi-official communication in the Times we do not 
wholly concur; but it contains many points of interest, and shows that the 
authorities are disposed to make alterations where they may appear re- 
quisite: — 

"There not only was greater care requisite in order to give rigidity to 
the central and most trying point of an edifice where safety and strength 
are so imperatively necessary, but the task of construction presented 
greater novelty of detail and less sameness of combination, as will be 
easily understood from the plan. In the first place, with reference to 
strength and stiffness, the whole structure was, in the opinion of experi- 
enced architects — men well qualified to pronounce an opinion — deficient 
in what is technically termed 'diagonal bracing' — a principle of construc- 
tion introduced by Sir Robert Seppings into the building of our larger 
ships, and the importance of which to an edifice like 'The Crystal Palace' 
will be readily conceived. This mechanical appliance had not been in- 
cluded in the plan, because it was believed to be unnecessary, and likely 
to prove cumbersome. Messrs. Fox & Henderson, the contractors, still 
express a confident opinion to that effect, and adduce proofs drawn from 
slight accidents that have occurred in the course of the works in support 
of their views. Their most experienced hands also declare that at the top 
of the third tier there is at present less vibration than at the top of most 
houses in the metropolis. Notwithstanding all this, however, the building 
committee have determined that, in the centre at the points of junction 
of the transept and principal aisles, and also at the extremities and other 
parts of the building where any strain is likely to be unduly felt, 'diago- 
nal bracing' shall be introduced. We are strongly inclined to think that 
in this they have exercised a wise precaution. It is no doubt true that 
the lightness of construction contemplated by the design of Mr. Paxton 
may be apt to excite apprehensions of insecurity which are unfounded; 
but where the slightest doubts are entertained by persons well competent 
to form an opinion, it is obviously best to err on the safe side." 

We have never faltered in our opinion of the ingenuity displayed by 
Mr. Paxton and his colleagues in the design and in the execution, and we 
are strongly of opinion that the Exhibition Building will exercise a ma- 
terial influence in extending the range of architectural exertion, and in 
improving the practice of construction. There is scarcely a part of the 
building in which some new mode of construction has not been adopted: 

* From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 

Conslmclion of the Roof of the Great Exhibition Building. 11 

some new application of mechanical skill, or some economical arrange- 
ment been brought to bear. Some things have yet to be tested by ex- 
perience, but some are patent and decided results, from which example 
may be already taken. Thus the building has peculiar interest to prac- 
tical men, and we are glad of every opportunity of giving information 
with regard to it. 

The portion we are now able to illustrate is the structure of the roof; 
and we shall, as far as possible, conform to Mr. Paxton's own description 
given at the Society of Arts last week. This subject is of the more in- 
terest, as Mr. Paxton has for many years made it his particular study, and 
he has peculiar opportunities of investigating the construction of light 

In 1828, the various forcing houses at Chatsworth were formed of coarse 
thick glass and heavy woodwork, which rendered the roofs dark and 
gloomy. His first object was to remove this evil, by lightening the rafters 
and sashbars, which was done by beveling off their sides. He also con- 
trived a light sashbar having a groove for the reception of the glass; this 
groove prevented the displacement of the putty by the sun, frost and rain. 
In horticultural structures, such as Mr. Paxton was encased in, it is of 
particular importance that the light and heat of the sun should not be ob- 
structed; it was therefore his object to get, as far as possible, a glass roof, 
and thereby a light roof. 

Most of the rays of light and heat were obstructed by the position of 
the glass and heavy rafters. This led him to the adoption of the ridge- 
and-furrow principle, which places the glass in such a position that the 
rays of light in the mornings and evenings enter the house without ob- 
struction. In 1834 he made a further experiment on the ridge-and-furrow 
principle, in the construction of a greenhouse of considerable dimensions, 
adopting a still lighter sashbar than any previously used; on which ac- 
count the house (although possessing all the advantages of wood) was as 
light as if constructed of metal. 

In 1837, in constructing the great conservatory at Chatsworth, it was 
found desirable to contrive some means for abridging the manual labor 
required in making the immense number of sashbars requisite. The only 
apparatus met with was a grooving machine, which was subsequently so 
improved as to make the sashbar complete. P^or this apparatus the So- 
ciety of Arts awarded Mr. Paxton a medal; and this machine is said to 
be the type from which all the sashbar machines now used are taken. 
The machine saved in expense .£1400. The length of each of the bars 
made by it is 48 inches, only one inch shorter than those of the Exhibi- 
tion Building; therefore there was adequate experience as to the working 
of the sashbar machinery for the Exhibition Building. 

The roof of the Exhibition Building is built on the ridge-and-furrow 
principle, and glazed with English sheet glass, the rafters being continued 
in uninterrupted lines the whole length of the building. The transept 
portion, although covered by a semicircular roof, is likewise on the an- 
gular principle. All the roof and upright sashes being made by machinery, 
are put together and glazed with great rapidity, for, being fitted and 
finished before they are brought to the place, little more is required than 
to fix the finished materials in the positions intended for them. The 


Civil Engineering. 

length of sashbar is stated by Mr. Paxton at 205 miles. The quantity of 
glass is about 900,000 feet, weighing 400 tons. 

On each of the longitudinal wrought iron framed girders is laid a gutter, 
and upon and communicating with this, four transverse gutters and plates, 
on which are laid the sash-bars of the four ridge-and-furrow roofs and 
glazing. The water falling on the glass is carried to the transverse gut- 
ters in the furrows, thence to the longitudinal gutters on the girders, and 
so down the hollow columns of the building to the bases, whence it is 
carried off by 6-inch cast iron water pipes. 

The glass made use of is English crown, 50 inches long, 10 inches wide, 
and j 1 q inch thick, running from the ridge-piece to the gutter-plate. The 
object of this length is to do away with overlaps. 

Fig 1. 

Fig 2. 

Figs. 3 and 4. Fj„. g 

The transverse trussed gutter-plates or troughs are cut out of solid fir 
scantling by machinery before they are brought on to the 
building. _ These transverse gutter-plates are trussed with 
wrought iron rods, bent in the form shown, which can be 
screwed up or slackened by nuts at the end. 

Having explained the general construction, we shall 
now refer to our engravings. Fig. 1 is half-length of the 
transverse gutter-plate A, the whole length being 24 feet, 
width 5 inches, and depth 6 inches. On the lower part of 
the gutter-plate is seen the tension rod c, 1 inch in diame- 
ter, secured by a nut and screw-plate at a, and passing 
through the eye of the queen bolts b. It is particularly worthy of obser° 
vation that the gutter-plates are made with a camber, so that the rain- 
water shall fall from the middle of the gutter to the ends, be readily car- 


Construction of the Roof of the Great Exhibition Building. 79 

ried off, and be precluded from lodging. The but-ends of the gutter-plates, 
as shown in fig. 2, are likewise brought together, and fixed in a cast iron 
shoe, with an aperture to carry the water down into a square trough. 

Figs. 2, 3, 4, and 5, are enlarged views 
of the gutter-plate, drawn to a scale of 
one-fourth the full size. Fig. 2 is a side 
view, showing the ends of the tension 
rods with the nut and screw, and cast 
iron plate fixed to the underside of the 
gutter-plate, of which fig. 4 is a view of 
the underside, and fig. 5 a transverse 
section of the gutter, showing the end of 
the tension rod, and how the plate is fas- 
tened to the timber. 

Fig. 3 is another transverse section of 
the gutter at y z, and also of the skylight, 
showing the wooden bar of the skylight 
and the ridge. The ri^ge is worked by 
machinery out of solid deal 3 in. square, 
and the butting joints have ^-inch dowel 
3 inches long. The ordinary skylight- 
bars are 1£ inches deep by 1 inch wide, 
shown in the small section, with a^-inch 
groove on each side to receive the glass. 
The other small section shows the form 
of other intermediate skylight-bars called 
string-bars, which are 2^ inches wide by 
lh inches deep. It will be perceived by 
the section, that the skylight-bars frame 
into the ridge, and are notched onto the 
trough gutter, being secured at top and 
bottom by 3-inch nails. For the purpose 
of taking off any condensation forming 
within the building which may run down 
the glass, a groove is provided worked 
on each side of the gutters. 

The skylights are 8 feet span, and have 
an incline of ~2% to 1. 

Fig. 6 is a transverse view of one of 
the ridge-and-furrow skylights. 

Fig. 7 is an elevation of the exterior, 
showing the two stories, the lower being 
closed with boarding, and the upper 
glazed. The base, to the height of 4 feet, 
is fitted with luffer boarding, with the 
view to ventilation. 

If the several details be carefully examined, it will be discovered there 
are several contrivances to save labor and facilitate fixing. It will be in- 
teresting to observe that, in matters so common and so common-place, 
there was yet room for the exercise of research and ingenuity. 

Fig 7. 


Remarks upon the Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. ( Written 

January, 1849.)* 

Made with a view of showing the financial advantage gained to a Railway Company, by 
keeping its whole stock of engines in a full state of efficiency in perpetuity, in preference 
to the system advocated by some parties of considering 10 years, or a somewhat longer 
time, as the "life" of an engine, and that a greater or less number of new ones must of 
necessity be either made by the Company, or purchased at different periods, to replace 
'•worn out" ones. 

The practicability of maintaining an engine at her full effective value, 
cannot be denied, and although experience might be supposed, by this 
time, lo have made obvious the actual cost of so doing, yet the original 
old stocks of most of the Railway Companies, have been frequently, from 
time to time, relieved, or, in other words, indirectly repaired, by the intro- 
duction of new engines, built nominally for the traffic of branch and exten- 
sion lines. 

These engines, which have been, for the most part, of a very much 
larger and more expensive class than the traffic of branch lines has been 
in most instances proved to require, have been paid for out of capital, and 
having been appropriated to the purposes of all general traffic, their ser- 
vices in the first bloom of newness and efficiency, have of necessity gone 
to some extent (and in many cases greatly so) to relieve or diminish the 
current expenditure. 

The time, however, must shortly arrive, when these additions to stock 
must cease, and the whole requisite stock be either maintained or re- 
placed by new out of the current earnings of the Companies, and the follow- 
ing calculations, made from experience in working engines, without the 
aid of occasional new stock, will tend to render more perspicuous what 
the actual cost of repairs must ultimately be, and will show the pecuniary 
advantage of maintaining over renewing stock. 

I would observe, that it is asserted by the executive of some of the 
leading railways, that their stocks are fully maintained, at their present 
rates of current expenditure, and that there is no necessity for appropria- 
ting any special fund in reserve for depreciating or renewing. I admit 
that depreciation need not exist, and I contend that it ought not, but, that 
it really does not, I deny, and I defy any Railway Company to substantiate, 
by fact, the assertion that it does not. [That is, our author means if the 
stock be not fully kept up in timely repairs. — Ed. R. «/.] 

In considering the difference of cost between maintaining and replacing 
or renewing "plant," I propose to speak of engines individually, assuming 
a certain quantity of work to be performed. Of general depreciation, it 
will be necessary to speak of the stock more collectively. 

The accounts of the various Railway Companies, and occasional pub- 
lished remarks, have represented the current cost of repairs, per engine, 
at from 2d. to 3d. per mile run, and superintendents have vied with each 
other in the smallness of their amount of expenditure on this head. The 
one who worked at 2d. of course priding himself greatly on his superiority 
over his neighbor of 3d. Not being aware of their respective systems of 
calculating mileage, I am inclined to believe that the charge of 3d. is 

* From the London Railway Journal, for November, 1850. 

Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. 81 

made on a much more honest amount of work done, and that such a 
charge would at any time show a stock more like what it ought to be than 
the other. 

I consider the only fair and proper method of charging expenses to be 
on the number of miles in actual service drawing trains, whether of loaded 
or empty vehicles. Necessity will frequently require that engines be 
sent out on trips, or run "return trips" empty or without a load, but these 
distances have no right to be placed to their credit of mileage account in 
repairs. A good engine should never be within giving a few occasional 
miles empty. 

I propose to show calculations made upon an extreme, and also upon 
a more moderate amount of work done. Premising, however, that they 
have been based upon the assumption that the different amounts be fairly 
and judiciously expended. Books will show an amount of expenditure of 
money, but the condition of the stock can alone show whether talent and 
prudence have been exercised in the appropriation of it, and on this account 
I submit, that it is the bounden duty of every board of Directors, to have 
an annual valuation, if not of all their floating locomotive stock, at least 
of each engine specifically; and, furthermore, I contend that the character 
of locomotive superintendents generally, is somewhat compromised by 
their not insisting on such valuation being made. 

Let us suppose, then, that an engine of the best manufacture, say 
j£2500, was newly set to work on the 1st of January, 1849, and that 
either the same engine must stand ready for work newly repaired, and in 
no single respect inferior in effective value on the 1st of January, 1859; or 
that she be worked to an extremity during the coming ten years; sold at 
the end of that time for what she would fetch, and a new one precisely 
similar, stand ready to take her place. I will first comment upon the 
latter supposition, viz., that it be the intention of her owners to replace her 
with a new one in ten years, and consequently to get as much work out 
of her as possible during that period, at the lowest possible current cost.* 

Assuming, then, that by extraordinary good luck she runs 300,000 miles 
in the ten years, as follows — 140 miles per day, five days every week, 
or in round numbers 3000 per month, for the first twenty months up to the 
31st of August, 1850. This would give a total of 60,000 miles every 
two years, allowing the last four months to refit her for commencing work 
again. f And in addition to this we have an allowance of two days every 
fortnight for overhauling and casualties.! 

Upon the above distance, viz., 300,000 miles§, let us suppose 2d. per 

* 2d. per mile named in my prefatory remarks, is, I believe, the lowest quotation for repairs 
that has yet been exhibited. 

t Talcing into consideration the various sources of interruption which occur to retard 
thorough repairs, four months would be found not too much time to make her fit to resume 
her station. 

X She may cither rest one day a week, two days together every fortnight, or four daws 
a month, as convenient, but an average of one day a week will not be found too much in 
the aggregate. 

§ Having proposed to show calculations on an extreme, and also on a more moderate 
distance run, I have adopted 300,000 miles as an extreme. I don't believe any engine 
ever did run that distance in ten years. I don't deny the possibility of its being done, but 
it would require a special qualification, and would absorb more time and care than could 
be devoted practical!}/ to any ant engine, I have assumed it in order to give every ad- 
vantage to the low figure of 2d. per mile for repairs. 

82 Civil Engineering. 

mile appropriated to repairs. Now, in repairs there are two specific items 
of the most expensive nature, which cannot be set aside, viz. fire-boxes 
and tabes,* as upon the perfect state of these depends the entire well-doing 
of the engine, or nearly so. I will, therefore, first make a specific charge 
for these. 

I consider that with (he above named hard work an engine would require, 
at least, a new set of tubes every two years, or 60,000 miles,f and a new 
fire-box, say at the end of every four years.} We have, therefore, to 
debit our engine with the cost of two new fire-boxes in the ten years, and 
four sets of new tubes, viz. a set at the end of the second ', fourth , sixth, and 
eighth years, the last set of which would keep her going till the end of the 
tenth year, when we have assumed she would be sold. The account will 
then stand thus: — 

2d. per mile upon 300,000 miles, . . £ 2500 

Deduct 4 sets of tubes, . . . £1200§ 

" 2 new lire-boxes, . . . 360 

£ 1560 
Less by credit of old tubes, . . £ 280 || 

" " of fire-boxes, . .180 



£ 1400 
Thus showing a clear demand of 44 per cent, on the amount allowed 
for repairs of engine and tender for ten years, and leaving a balance of 
only =£1400 for general purposes. A moment's consideration of the cost- 
liness of many other specific items, viz., wheels and axles of both engine 
and tender, cylinders, pistons, &c, besides the innumerable smaller mat- 
ters which are involved in a thorough repair, to say nothing of a due share 
of general charges,H will render the utter inadequacy of the above sum 
too palpable to require any comment.** 

I will, therefore, (still giving her credit for doing the above extreme 
amount of work, say 300,000 miles,) assume that 2^d. per mile be allowed 
for repairs during ten years; that she have a thorough repair every two 
years for eight years, and at the end of ten years she is to be offered for 
sale. ft 

* Whatever other repairs may be neglected or delayed, these two munt be kept up. 
The loss of power from a defective boiler is incalculable. 

f Few tubes do run this distance even with the best of coke. 

X A new tube plate is sometimes introduced as a temporary relief to fire-boxes, but con- 
sidering the expense of taking out and putting in, I think it the best economy to renew the 
whole box, as we have the old metal to our credit, and a really good job cannot be made 
of staying the sides of an old box the second time. 

§ Tubes are taken at the set of 200 in number, 11 feet 6 inches long, and 2 inches out- 
side diameter. These will cost at least 28s. per tube, delivered at the Company's works, 
and I allow £ 20 per set for ferrules and putting in. New fire-boxes are assumed at 26 
cwt. of copper, at lid. per lb., and allows about £ 45 for making and putting in. 

|| Old tubes are taken at one-fourth their original value, viz., half-price, less diminution 
of weight of 33 per cent, or more, and the expense of taking out and back carriage. Old 
fire-boxes allowed half their original cost. 

Tf General indoor charges include stationary engine for driving machinery, repairs to 
machinery, tools, and buildings; rates, superintendence, foremen and clerks, gas, &c. 

** It is evident that, even if kept alive at all, she would work at a great sacrifice of power, 
&c, and be utterly unsaleable at last. 

ft Be it remembered that being now, as it were, "used up," any purchaser would be 
necessitated to lav out an extravagant sum to make her available. 

Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. 83 

The account in this case will stand as follows: — 

2$d. per mile upon 300,000 miles, . . . £ 3125 

Dr. to fire-boxes and tubes, as before, . . .1100 

£ 2025 

Now, supposing that she actually runs twenty months at a time, and at 
the end of each period has a thorough repair, it will be necessary in the 
division of the above sura of .£2025, to vote £ 100 or thereabouts, to be 
expended during each period of running for casualties* 

Taking a low allowance, let us say for the ten years 425/. This leaves 
a balance of 1600/. to be divided into four thorough repairs of engine and 
tender, and at the end of the last two years she is to be unhooked from 
her last load, drop her fire, and be offered for sale. If a purchaser be 
found at all, she might probably fetch 400/., certainly not more,f and I 
appeal to any man experienced in such things, whether, after her great 
amount of work done and limited allowance for repairs, the above sum be 
not a handsome one. 

Assuming this to be the result of ten years' work at an allowance of 
2|d. per mile for repairs, our account will stand thus: — 

By sale of old engine, ......£ 400 

Reserve required of l^d. per mile beyond current expeneliture on 

300,000 miles, ...... 1875 

Assumed bank interest on accumulating reserve fund at 2 A per cent. J 225 

£ 2500 

Required to pay for the new engine which is to succeed the old one on 
the 1st January, 1859. 

We therefore see that, under the most favorable circumstances, a sum 
of 4d. per mile run must one way or other be appropriated, if old engines 
are to be periodically replaced by new ones,§ or a gross cost of 5000/., 
taking advantage of interest on accumulating money. 

Tt being evident, therefore, that, with an extreme amount of mileage, 
a current charge must inevitably be made on revenue of at least 4d. per 
mile run, if the renewing system be adopted, let us see the demand on 
our revenue under the circumstances, supposing it were our intention to 
maintain the same engine, and have her fully repaired and ready to 

* These casualties arc the ordinary small jobs which each working engine requires, and 
must have done, and for which the average time of one day per week is allowed. I have 
taken no account of serious accidents, which the whole world knows are often very ex- 
pensive, and which must continue to occur occasionally to the end of time. I consider 
that the expenses of a serious accident to any one engine should be put to the account of 
"gi neral charges," and be proportionately borne by all. All are liable to accident, and all 
should help to relieve. 

f I say this from having had some experience in the sale of worn out engines, and i! is 
not unlikely she mijrht have to wait many months before such a sum, or even a less sum, 
could be got for her. 

J I fear few Companies would be found to have been so prudent as to take advantage 
of this interest on accumulating money. 

§ Not having to devote the last four months of the ten years to repairs, it may be argued 
that an extra quantity of work might be obtained from the engine in the given time. I 
maintain that her condition would be such that she would barely complete the 60,000 
miles in the last two years, including the extra time. If she realized any excess, it might 
be nlaccd to the relief of bank interest, for if the amount allowed for this were not realized, 
it would require an extra charge of nearly ^d. per mile on 300,000 miles to make up the 

84 Civil Engineering. 

commence a second ten years work on the first of January, 1859. The 
specific repairs of fire-box and tubes will in this case bear a different pro- 
portion, and instead of two fire-boxes and four sets of tubes, I must here 
charge the engine with two and a half fire-boxes and five sets of new 
tubes,* making, after allowance for old metal, a demand of 1375/. for these 
two items alone. In addition to this I will allow a clear charge of 100/. 
for each period of twenty months' running, to be expended in casualties, 
or a gross charge for ten years of 500/., f and instead of four thorough re- 
pairs at 400/. each, I will give 2500/. to be divided into five thorough re- 
pairs, (the last, of course, being done between the 1st September, 1858, 
and 1st January, 1859,) say four repairs at 450/. each. At the end of the 
second, fourth, sixth, and eighth years respectively, and a clear 700/. to 
cover all at last, \ exclusive, of course, of fire-boxes and tubes charged 

This shows our account to result as follows: — 

Fire-boxes and tubes, .... £ 1375 

£ 100 every twenty months for casualties, . . 500 

Four thorough repairs at £450 each, . . 1800 

One final do. at £ 700, . . . .700 

Or a gross cost of 4375/. on 300,000 miles, averaging a charge 
3^d. per mile, being id. per mile less than in the case of buyii 

Total, . . . . £ 4375 

of under 
buying a new 

• This difference of id. per mile on 300,000 miles makes a gain of 625/. 
per engine to the Company every ten years. § 

To be Continued. 

A Flue of Flues. \\ 

In course of operations in the Tamar Silver Lead Mines, on the borders 
of Devon and Cornwall, it became latterly essential either to erect a 
powerful steam engine at the foot of a subterranean inclined plane, 2000 
feet in length, and running right below the river which flows over the 
mine, to a perpendicular depth of 800 feet below its bed; or, failing that, 
to shut up the mine and throw 1500 people out of employment. It was, 
therefore, determined to adopt the former alternative, and a 20-horse steam 
engine, one of the patent combined hydraulic engines from Walker's 

* The fire-box being removed at the end of each four years, would leave one only "half 
worn" at the end of ten years, into which a set of new tubes would be put. I therefore 
debit her half of the value of a third box, and take credit for half the value of old metal 

f In the renewing system I only allowed £ 425 for casualties. In this case I give a 
more liberal allowance, knowing well the value of constant care or "a stitch in time." 

J I believe the most punctilious could not deny that, with an annual allowance for casu- 
alties in repairs of £60, and a provision of £450 every twenty months, (exclusive of fire- 
boxes and tubes,) for thorough repairs, £ 700 would well refit her, and turn her out in as 
effective a state as at first, if not better. 

§ This ^d. per mile in a stock of two hundred engines will be equal to £125,000 in ten 
years, or £12,500 per annum, which ought and eventually must be charged to revenue. 
|| From the London Builder, November, 1850. 

The Bridge Failure at London Bridge. 85 

manufactory at Oliver's yard, City-road, was accordingly fitted up at that 
depth. Flues were, of course, requisite, and it was found advisable to 
conduct these across to the furthest bank of the river, and in a series of 
horizontal levels united by perpendicular shafts, so that the flue in sections 
rises like a flight of stairs to the surface. This flue is no less than two 
miles long and upwards, probably the longest flue in the world. The 
result was quite successful, as will appear from the following statement: 
— "We drew through Spurgin's shaft in October month 2988 kibbles of 
stuff with Walker's new underground engine: this machine is well con- 
structed, and I have every reason to believe she will pump the shaft 150 
fathoms deeper than it is at the present time. We have in these mines 
six steam engines at work at the surface, but the draft of the under- 
ground engine exceeds the whole. The consumption of coals is 5 cwt. 
in the twenty-four hours." 

Ship Canal behoee?i the Mediterranean and the Red Sea* 

Mr. Robert Stephenson is now on his way to Suez, to examine the route 
for a ship canal between the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. This survey 
is said to form part of a conjoint survey directed by England, France, and 
Austria, the former being represented by Mr. Stephenson, France by M. 
Paulin Talabot, and Austria by M. Negrelli. These latter have completed 
their labors, and on the completion of Mr. Stephenson's survey, the 
route will be determined on the conjoint evidence of the three reports. 
It is hoped the three powers will contribute the funds, if not the works 
will be conceded by the Pasha to a Joint Stock Company. Before the 
Academy of Sciences the survey of M. Bourdaloue, made in 1847, has 
been laid; it was under the direction of Mehemet Ali Pasha, and embraces 
the country between the Nile and the Red Sea, the levels being most 
carefully taken. The results differ very much from those of the French 
Commission of 1799. 

The Bridge Failure at the South- Eastern Station, London Bridge.] 

Experience is only true and valuable so far as it is on an extended basis, 
for, though called so, that is not experience which is merely local and 
partial. We are not always called upon to reproduce the same model or 
work on the same lines; but our practice is chiefly in the extension or 
particular application of existing examples. It therefore becomes of the 
greatest importance that w r e should have as wide a collection of facts as 
possible, so as to enable us more safely to calculate the result of any new 
direction, new application, or further extension; so, indeed, as to secure 
us from experimenting too far. We want, therefore, not only examples 
of success, but of failure; we want especially to know where any principle 
has been strained too much, that we may avoid such extreme, and where 
any detail has proved defective, so that we may apply the proper remedy. 
It has therefore always been considered, by our best authorities, as most 
expedient to record failures. Thus Smeaton prefaces the history of the 
Eddystone Lighthouse; thus, in the history of the Menai Bridge, the checks 
* From the London Architect, for November, 1850. flliid. 
Vol. XXI. — Third Series. — No. 2. — February, 1851. 8 

86 Civil Engineering. 

received in experimenting, by which the ultimate application was arrived 
at, are carefully set forth for the guidance of future practitioners. We 
have therefore felt it highly desirable to report, as accurately as it is 
possible, a few particulars as to the failure of the Bridge over Joiner-street, 
at the carriage entrance to the South-Eastern Railway Offices of the London 
Bridge Station, which took place on Saturday, the 19th ultimo. 

The bridge is of a peculiar construction, and consists of six compound 
girders of cast and wrought iron, patented by Captain Warren. The 
annexed engraving, fig. 1, shows part of one of the girders, rather more 
than half the length; and fig. 2, a transverse section of the roadway and 
two of the girders. There are in all six girders, placed 11 ft. 6 in. apart. 
The girder that broke is 41 ft. 6 in. long, and consists of a series of triplet 
cast-iron triangles, with a connecting-rib along the top and bolted at 
the joints, but there is no connecting-rib along the bottom of the girder; 
instead of which, they are held together by a horizontal tie, consisting 
in width of four wrought-iron bars, 6 inches deep by 1^ inch thick and 
13 feet in length, coupled together by 4| inch bolts passing through a boss 
cast on the triangular stays, and also bolted to the intermediate triangles. 

Fig. l. 

Fig. 2. Fig. 3. 

The cast-iron triangles are 4 feet deep, with a rib cast on the top 6 in. 
deep, making the whole height of the girder 4 ft. 6 in., and the length of 
the triplets 13 feet; the section of the cast-iron is T-shaped, b\ inches wide 
on the back, and the depth the same; the thickness of metal 2 inches. 

On the top of the girders are laid cast-iron plates, 11 ft. 6 in. long, 
with ribs bearing at each end on the girders; on these plates rest the 
materials which form the road, as shown in fig. 2. It must be observed, 
that the horizontal tie-bars are not intended to act as suspension bars; they 
are merely connected at the abutment piers to the ends of the cast-iron 
triangles. The points at which the bridge failed is marked with the letter 
/, where one of the cast iron stays broke asunder, and also the top rib, as 
shown in fig. 3, which is an enlarged view of the triangle which failed. 
It was only 5 feet from the abutment. The fracture is shown ztf,f,f. 

Various statements have been made as to the cause of the failure. 

Collision on the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway. 87 

It was stated that the accident was caused by the girder being loaded 
with a large stack of bricks; but this is doubted, as the stack was at the 
opposite end, as shown in the annexed diagram. The stack of bricks 

bearing on the girder was 11 feet square and 5 feet 6 inches high, equal 
to 666 cubic feet, which will give, at 72 feet to the thousand, between 
nine and ten thousand bricks, or a weight of about 22 tons. Another 
statement is, that the failure was caused by two carts which were on 
the bridge at the time; one of them, loaded with bricks, it is supposed 
passed over some obstacle, and caused the wheel to descend suddenly 
with great force. Whether this be so or not, we cannot pretend to say; 
but if the bridge had been properly constructed, with a cast iron girder 
41 ft. 6 in. long, and of the great depth of 4 ft. 6 in., it ought not to have 
broken down with any such force. For ourselves, we are decidedly averse 
to these compound girders of wrought and cast iron. The contraction 
and expansion are unequal; and, consequently, the strain must be con- 
stantly varying, while the slightest deflexion of the wrought iron must 
cause the cast iron to snap asunder. 

If this bridge had been constructed with a series of triangles, cast with 
a connecting-rib at the bottom and a broad flange on the underside equal 
in weight to the wrought iron, it would, in our opinion, have stood and 
borne a weight far greater than this compound girder bridge. 

At the time we went to press, they were testing the bridge, and had a 
dead load when we left of 30 tons on a pair of girders. With a load of 
20 tons on the pair, the deflexion was 0-20 of an inch. 

Figs. 1 and 2 are drawn to a scale of ^-in., and fig. 3 to \-'\n. to a foot. 

Our English friends and their imitators here, are much shocked at the 
carelessness and mismanagement on our railroads, and it must be confessed 
not without cause. How will they like the following as a matter of com- 
parison ? 

Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway — Frightful Collision* 

On Friday last, about six o'clock, a fearful collision took place on this 
line, near the Huddersfield Junction, by which an immense amount of 
damage has been done to the stock of the Company, three engines being 
destroyed and a train of carriages knocked to pieces. The accident ap- 
pears to have arisen as follows: — An engine which had been undergoing 
repairs in the engine shed on the main line, close to the junction, was 
being driven on, in order to its being shunted on to the line on which it 
was to be worked, and by some singular mismanagement was brought 
into violent collision with the passenger train from Bradford. The shock 
was so violent as to smash completely the engine and tender as well as 

* From the London Railway Magazine, for November, 1850. 

88 Civil Engineering. 

the engine belonging to the passenger train. The passengers, in alarm 
jumped out of the carriages, but had hardly time to become conscious of 
their fortunate escape when a goods train dashed into the standing train, 
doubling up all the carriages in a moment and knocking them to shivers. 
It was remarkable that none of the passengers were killed or injured by 
the flying splinters. The line was completely choked up, and men were 
immediately set to work to make a temporary line of rails for the transit 
of the usual traffic. It is impossible, at present, to estimate the extent of 
the damage. An inquiry will be promptly instituted into the circumstances 
connected with the catastrophe, Capt. Laws having repaired to the spot 
immediately on receipt of the telegraphic new r s of the accident. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 
Advantages of using Fresh Water in the Boilers of Sea Steamers. 

In steam boilers using salt water, it is necessary to extract or blow out 
a portion of the partly saturated water, at intervals or by a continuous 
process, to prevent a deposit of solid matter on the internal surfaces. The 
water blown out or extracted being much hotter than when it entered, 
must be the cause of an increased consumption of fuel, and may be ex- 
plained or estimated as follows: 

Sea water contains about one pound of salt and other solid matter in 
every 32 lbs. of water; its density is then called -J.J, being g^d part of 
salt, &c. When reduced by evaporation to half that quantity, the same 
amount of salt is still in that water, and is then in the proportion of 2 lbs. 
of salt to 32 lbs. of water, or at the density of ^ 2 2 , &c. 

It is evident that when keeping the water in the boiler at a density of 
3 2 5 , one part is used for steam, and an equal quantity must be blown out; 
then as much salt, &c, will go out in one gallon or foot as entered in 
two gallons or two feet, and as long as this proportion to that evaporated 
is blown out, the water in the boiler will be kept at that density. 

If the water in the boiler is kept at the density of g 3 2 -, then two parts 
will be used for steam, and one part must be blown out; then as much 
salt, &c. will go out in one part as entered in three parts. 

Taking the^latent heat of steam at 990°, sensible heat 212° =1202°, 
the total heat in steam. 

The quantity of heat necessary to evaporate one volume of water, is 
1202°, less the temperature of the feed water entering the boiler, which 
is generally about 100°; taking this from the sensible and latent heats 
= 1202 — 100 =1102°, which must be imparted to it to cause it to as- 
sume the form of steam. 

The part or water blown out has to be raised from the temperature of 
the water entering to that leaving the boiler. Water entering 100°, that 
blown out 250°, difference or loss, 150°. 

The proportion or loss is shown as follows: — Suppose two volumes of 
water enter the boiler, and the density is to be kept at -f 2 : 

One volume is formed into steam and requires . . 1102° 

One volume is blown out containing .... 150° 

Quantity of heat required . . . 1252° 

Using Fresh Water in Boilers of Sea Steamers. 89 

The 150° blown out, being necessary to keep the boiler from incrusta- 

tion, is the part lost; therefore, = 5 .| T part, equal to 11-98 pr. ct. 

If the water in the boiler is kept at ^ Si then, if three volumes of water 
enter the boiler, two are formed into steam. 

Each requires 1102° = . . . . 2204° 

One volume blown out containing . . . 150° 

Quantity of heat required . . 2354° 

As above, 150° blown out, then = jzhu equal to 6-37 pr. ct. 

The following formula will answer for calculating it: — 

Let H represent the sum of the sensible and latent heats. 

D the difference in temperature of the water entering and that leaving 
the boiler. 

T the temperature of the water entering the boiler. 

E the proportion or quantity of water evaporated, the quantity blown 

out being constant, or represented by 1*000. 

~, H-TxE + D . . , . , 

Inen — = the - part of the heat lost. 

Or — — — — — — — = the per cent, of loss. 

H— TxE + D * 

The following is calculated by this formula: — 

Example for the Density o/ 'Wo. 
11=1202° T=100° E=-5 D=150° 

Per cent. 

1202 —100= 1102 x -5=551 + 150=4§?- 21-39 

At ȣ$- ...... 15-30 

At ;-., " 1202 —100= 1102 x 1 -f- 150 = J/^ 11-90 

At %% 5 . . . . . . 9-80 

At If 1202— 100=1102x1-5+ T yA 8-30 

At2f . . . . . . 7-20 

At 3 . . . . . . . 6-37 

At 3^ . . . . . 5-00 

At 4" . . . . . . . 4-30 

The amount of loss stated above occurs when enough is blown to keep 
the water at the densities given. To keep the boiler clean, the water 
should not be allowed to get more dense than ^ in the Atlantic Ocean, 
but, to be sure, it should be kept rather less in the Gulf of Mexico — not 
more than V:]. In steamers having no indicator of this kind, they very 
probably keep the water less than ^|, and most of them that have them 
keep it at J 3 7 /' , with a loss of from 14 to 21 per cent, of fuel. The above 
proportion of loss is when steam of two atmospheres is used; the loss in- 
creases as the pressure of steam used is greater, in consequence of the 
water being blown out at a higher temperature. 

The saving in the cost of the fuel is but a small part compared to other 
advantages, such as increased durabilty of boilers, greater safety, increased 
stowage of freight, &c. W. S. 


Extract from an Account of the Chimney of the Edinburgh Gas Works, 
with observations on the Principles of its Strength and Stability. By 
George Buchanan, Esq., F. R. S. E., C. E.* 

The only point remaining to be considered, and to which Mr. B.'s atten- 
tion was particularly called, was the expediency of protecting the build- 
ing by a lightning conductor. He had formerly, when the old chimney 
was erected, been consulted as to this, and considered it unnecessary, the 
height being moderate, and doubts being then entertained of the efficacy 
or expediency of such instruments. Much, however, has since been added 
to our knowledge and experience on this subject, and on the beneficial 
operation of conductors; so that he had no hesitation, the altitude also 
being so much greater, in recommending it. But having requested to be 
favored with the views of a friend, and high authority, Professor Faraday, 
he gave an extract from his letter as follows: 

"The conductor should be of ^-inch copper rod, and should rise above 
the top of the chimney by a quantity equal to the width of the chimney at 
top. The lengths of rod should be well joined metallically to each other, 
and this is perhaps best done by screwing the ends into a copper socket. 
The connexion at the bottom should be good; if there are any pump-pipes 
at hand going into'a well they would be useful in that respect. As respects 
electrical conduction, no advantage is gained by expanding the rod hori- 
zontally into a strap or tube — surface does nothing, the solid section is the 
essential element. f There is no occasion of insulation (of the conductor) 
for this reason. A flash of lightning ha,s an intensity that enables it to 
break through many hundred yards (perhaps miles) of air, and therefore 
an insulation of 6 inches or 1 foot in length could have no power in pre- 
venting its leap to the brickwork, supposing that the conductor were not 
able to carry it away. Again, six inches or one foot is so little that it is 
equivalent almost to nothing. A very feeble electricity could break 
throuoh that barrier, and a flash that could not break through five or ten 
feet could do no harm to the chimney." 

"A very great point is to have no insulated masses of metal. If, there- 
fore hoops are put round the chimney, each should be connected metal- 
lically with the conductor, otherwise a flash might strike a hoop at a 
corner on the opposite side to the conductor, and then on the other side 
on passing to the conductor, from the nearest part of the hoop there might 
be an explosion, and the chimney injured there or even broken through. 
Again, no rods or ties of metal should be wrought into the chimney 
parallel to its length, and, therefore, to the conductor, and then to be left 
unconnected with it." 

In answer to some further inquiry, Professor Faraday again writes: — 

"The rod may be close along the brick or stone, it makes no difference. 
There will be no need of rod on each side of the building, but let the cast 
iron hoop and the others you speak of be connected with the rod, and it 
will be in those places at least, as if there were rods on every side of the 

"A three-fourth rod is no doubt better than a half-inch, and, except for 

* From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 

f The very reverse of what was formerly held by high authorities. 

Indicator Diagrams from the U. S. Steamer "Spitfire." 91 

expense, I like it better. But a half-inch has never yet failed. A rod at 
Coutt's brewery has been put up \\ inch diameter; but they did not mind 
expense. The Nelson Column in London has a half-inch rod — three- 
fourths is better. 

"I do not know of any case of harm from hoop-iron inclosed in the 
building, but if not in connexion with the conductor I should not like it; 
even then it might cause harm if the lightning took the end furthest from 
the conductor." 

The rod was constructed nearly according to these directions, of -|-inch 
copper, and the effect of it was very remarkably exemplified during the 
progress of the work. It was carried up regularly along with the building, 
and during storms, or a very electric state of the atmosphere, the electric 
fluid was distinctly preceived rushing down the rod, by a loud singing 
noise given out by it, arising from a tremor or vibration into which it was 
thrown, by a little play in the studs or eyes through which it passed in the 
building, and during these times the workmen were by no means fond of 
approaching too near it, but no harm ever occurred to any one from it. 

Cornish Engines* 

The number of pumping engines reported this month is 28. They have 
consumed 1913 tons of coal, and lifted 17,000,000 tons of water lOfathoms 
high. The average duty of the whole is, therefore, 50,000,000 lbs. lifted 
one foot high by the consumption of 94 lbs. of coal. — Leaii's Engine Re- 
porter, Nov. 5. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Notes on Indicator Diagrams from the U. S. War Steamer "Spitfire" 
By B. F. Isherwood, Chief Engineer U. S. JV. 

The accompanying indicator diagrams (Plate I.) were taken from the 
steam cylinder of the U, S. steamer "Spitfire" by me, while senior en- 
gineer of her during the late war with Mexico. I had taken every pre- 
caution to have the indicator in perfect order, and am convinced that the 
diagrams are strictly accurate. Nos. 1, 2, 3, and 4, were taken succes- 
sively at intervals of about 10 minutes, on the 16th October, 1847, while 
steaming up the Alvarado river; there being throughout the whole time 
a steady, strong, aft breeze, with the foresail and jibs set. The expansion 
valve was inoperative, the steam communication with the boiler bein<r 
open throughout the entire stroke of the piston. 

No. 1 was taken with the throttle valve as close shut as it could be 
jammed. Steam pressure in the boiler above the atmosphere 13 pounds 
per square inch. Double strokes of piston, 8J per minute. Mean pres- 
sure throughout stroke, by indicator, 4^ lbs. per square inch. 

No. 2 was taken with the throttle valve 3 \A open. Steam pressure 
in the boiler above the atmosphere, 10 lbs. per square inch. Double 
strokes of piston, 12^ per minute, Mean pressure throughout stroke, by 
indicator, 9-88 lbs. per square inch. 

* From the London Railway Journal, for November, 1850. 

92 Civil Engineering. 

No. 3 was taken with the throttle valve T ] e th open. Steam pressure in 
the boiler above the atmosphere, 9.^ lbs. per square inch. Double strokes 
of piston 13^- per minute. Mean pressure throughout stroke, by indicator, 
12-84 lbs. per square inch. 

No. 4 was taken with the throttle valve ^th open. Steam pressure in 
the boiler above the atmosphere, 10 lbs. per square inch. Double strokes 
of piston, 15 per minute. Mean pressure throughout stroke, by indicator, 
14-75 lbs. per square inch. 

It is at once apparent that one object of taking these diagrams with the 
throttle valve successively jammed shut, -g^d, T Vh, and |th open, was 
to observe the phenomena of pressure in the cylinder caused by throttling. 
We are first struck by the inequality of the boiler pressure and of the initial 
cylinder pressure; the inequality becoming greater as the area of the pas- 
sage from the boiler is decreased by throttling. 

In Nos. 1, 2, 3, and 4, the speeds of the piston were respectively 99, 
147, 162, and ISO feet per minute, — low velocities compared to that with 
which steam of 25 lbs. total pressure rushes into a vacuum, viz., about 
96,000 feet per minute. Pambour, in his " Theory of the Steam Engine" 
states that the pressure in the cylinder depends wholly on the load upon 
the piston, irrespective of the area of steam passage, and that this depen- 
dency is not affected by the operation of throttling. In illustration of this 
hypothesis, he likens the piston to a loaded safety valve, which is of course 
in equilibrium when the steam pressure equals the weight or load, and 
rises with the slightest increase. In no point of view, however, can the 
piston be likened to a safety valve; the safety valve rises as soon as the 
pressure exceeds the load, but does not continue to nse, while the piston, 
on the contrary, moves as soon as the pressure exceeds the load, and 
continues to move. In the first case it is a mere balance of statical forces, 
in the second it is a dynamical phenomenon; and supposing the area of 
the steam passage from the boiler to be sufficiently large that the steam 
suffer no diminution of pressure from friction, vena contractu, condensa- 
tion, &c, the pressure in the cylinder would be always the same as in the 
boiler, and the difference of load on the piston would affect only its ve- 
locity — not the pressure upon it; the lighter the load, the greater the 
velocity at which it would be moved, the pressure being the same, — the 
equilibrium with the pressure being maintained by the lighter load by its 
greater velocity. In confirmation of this, indicator diagrams Nos. 5 and 
6 are given. In each case the steam pressure in the boiler was 12 lbs. 
per square inch above the atmosphere, and the throttle was -, 5 e ths open; 
steaming in the Alvarado river; draft of water, &c, being the same. In 
No. 5, steaming against a moderate head wind, the initial pressure in the 
cylinder was 8| lbs. per square inch above the atmosphere, and maintained 
at that pressure to the point of cutting off; double strokes of piston per 
minute, 26. In No. 6, steaming with a fresh aft wind, foresail and jibs 
set, the initial pressure in the cylinder was 8i- lbs. per square inch above 
the atmosphere, and maintained at that pressure throughout the stroke, 
(the expansion valve being inoperative,) double strokes per minute, 32. 
In these instances, the normal load upon the piston, viz., the resistance 
of the vessel, was increased in the first by a moderate head wind, and 
decreased greatly in the last by the action of a fresh aft wind on the hull 

Journal IhanJk&n Institute 

— j4*r*i*± 

y*/*w* — 

is a 



Indicator Diagrams from the U. S. Steamer "Spitfire." 93 

and sails, yet the cylinder pressure in each case bore almost exactly the 
same relation to the boiler pressure, the difference of load on the piston 
being evidenced by the difference of its velocity only. I shall consider, 
therefore, this theory of Pambour as erroneous, and that the indicator 
diagrams prove that the difference between the boiler and cylinder pres- 
sures depends wholly on the area of the passage of communication, the 
effect of friction, condensation, &c, apart; for we perceive that in Nos. 
1, 2, 3, and 4, where the load upon the piston was exactly the same, viz., 
the resistance of the vessel, the difference between the boiler and cylinder 
pressure was affected by each variation of throttle, and the velocity with 
which the load was moved varied with the pressure. 

To return to diagrams 1, 2, 3, and 4, we observe that the pressure at 
which the steam enters the cylinder continues for a variable fraction of 
the stroke, and then gradually declines until about f-ths of the stroke is 
completed, thence continuing equal for the remaining §4hs. 

It might be supposed that, as the velocity of the piston increases from 
the beginning to the middle of its stroke, and thence decreases to the end, 
(the throttle opening remaining the same,) that the pressure would corres- 
pond inversely with this velocity, being greatest at the beginning of the 
stroke, decreasing to the middle, and thence increasing to the end, where 
it would equal the pressure at the beginning. A little reflection, however, 
on the laws of elastic fluids, will show us that the diagrams are such as 
should be given. Let us suppose the piston at the commencement of ils 
stroke, and let us further suppose it to have performed a fraction of its 
stroke, leaving a vacuum by its space displacement; the steam, rushing 
in from the boiler, fills this space with a certain pressure; the piston now 
continues to advance another equal fraction of its stroke, doubling its 
original space displacement; the steam contained in that space, will, by 
the well known law of fluids, be only half its first pressure, and the steam 
from the boiler will still rush in, but with a much less velocity than be- 
fore. Its original velocity would be that due to a body falling from a 
height, equal to the height of a homogeneous column of steam having a 
weight equal to the original pressure, corrected by a coefficient representing 
the decrease of velocity caused by throttling. 

But this velocity in the second fraction of the stroke would be lessened 
by the pressure of the steam already present, in consequence of the ex- 
pansion of that which filled the first fraction. The original velocity will 
be lessened by the quantity due to a body falling from a height equal to 
the height of a homogeneous column of steam, having a weight equal to 
this expansion pressure. It will not, therefore, fill the cylinder with a 
pressure equal to the first, which will also be further reduced by the re- 
duction of time for performing this fraction of the stroke, consequent upon 
the increased speed of the piston. Again, suppose the piston to perform 
another equal fraction of its stroke; its space displacement is now triple 
its first displacement, and the two volumes of steam contained in its first 
two displacements will now be expanded into three volumes, and conse- 
quently be two-thirds the pressure. Supposing, which is in fact the case, 
that the ultimate steam pressures in the first and second displacements 
varied but little, it will be obvious that two-thirds the ultimate pressure 
present at the end of the second displacement is greater than one-half the 


Civil Engineering. 

ultimate pressure present at the end of the first displacement; consequently 
the velocity with which the steam will rush into the third displacement, 
against two-thirds pressure, will be less than against one-half pressure, 
and so on for any number of equal displacements, the entering A r elocity 
of the steam becoming less and less with each additional displacement, 
because the pressure already present becomes greater and greater as the 
space to be expanded through evidently becomes less and less proportion- 
ally to the bulk of steam to be expanded. Did the piston, therefore, move 
with an uniform velocity, the line of steam pressures would be a curved 
line continually approximating a straight line, but never becoming straight 
though continued to infinity. This curved line is, however, modified in 
the diagrams by the unequal velocity of the piston in different parts of its 

The diagrams also show that the valve had no lead, and that there was, 
in consequence, a slight loss of power potentially and economically, evi- 
denced by the too great rounding off of the exhaust corner, — a defect I 
afterwards remedied by giving proper lead. 

There are other conclusions to be drawn from the first four diagrams, 
(which were taken under the same circumstances of vessel and weather,) 
one of which is a verification of the law, that the power required to propel 
a vessel is as the cube of the vessel's speed, — for a double speed, twice 
the quantity of water being displaced with twice the velocity, the power 
also acting over twice the space. Now, under the same circumstances 
of vessel and weather, the slip of the propelling instrument will be a con- 
stant proportion of the vessel's velocity at all speeds, for if the resistance 
of the water to the vessel increases as the square of the speed, the same 
resistance Slso increases in the same proportion to the speed of the pro- 
pelling surface, and the proportion between the speeds of the vessel and 
propelling surface is thus maintained. From this it follows that the speed 
of a vessel will be in the direct proportion to the speed of the propelling 
surface, and the double stroke given by the engine being directly propor- 
tional to this speed, the speed of the vessel will be directly proportional 
to the number of double strokes of the piston. Furthermore, the power 
will evidently be expressed by the product of the mean pressure on the 
piston and the number of double strokes per minute. Tabulating these 
quantities, we have: — 

Pressures on 
piston in 

pounds per 
sq. inch. 

Double strokes 

of piston per 



Pressures on 



Double strokes 
of piston. 


Products of 

pressure on, 

and double 

strokes of, 



Cube roots of 
products of 
pressure on, 
and double 
strokes of, 

























In this table, column A gives the expressions for speed, and column B 

The Way to Make Engineers. 95 

the expressions for power, on the above stated hypothesis, the slight dis- 
crepancies being occasioned by small errors of observation, particularly 
as the fraction of a stroke was estimated by the eye. 

Another conclusion to be drawn from these diagrams is that, under the 
same circumstances of vessel and weather, the number of double strokes 
made by the piston in any given time is as the square root of the pressure on 
it. Taking column A of double strokes from the above table, and the 
square roots of column C of pressures, we have: — 

C A. 




^/3-2777 = 1-8105 . . . 1-8181 

The law, that the number of double strokes made by the piston in any 
given time is as the square root of the pressure on it, might have been 
deduced from the previous hypothesis, that the power required to propel 
a vessel is as the cube of the vessel's speed; and that the vessel's speed 
is directly as the number of double strokes of the piston in any given time. 
Because, in the expression for power, the element velocity is represented 
by the number of double strokes of the piston, and for a double speed this 
element is only doubled; but for a double speed the power must be cubed; 
therefore the element pressure must be squared in order that the product 
of the two elements shall be a cube. Hence, for different speeds we find 
the pressure must be proportional to the square of the speeds, or the speeds 
proportional to the square roots of the pressure. 






Railway Passenger Assurance Company.* 

The Directors of the Edinburgh and Glasgow Railway Company have 
resolved that, in future, they will not give any allowance or compensation 
to their servants in cases of death or injury arising from accidents, "as 
they have an opportunity, by the payment of a small premium periodi- 
cally, to insure an adequate sum in case of injury, and to provide for their 
families in the event of death." In consequence of this resolution, the 
manager, Mr. Latham, has issued a general order, urging upon engine- 
drivers, firemen, and guards, the necessity of availing themselves, forth- 
with, of the benefits held forth by the Railway Passenger Assurance Co. — 
Glasgow Daily Mail. 

The Way to Make Engineers, f 

An excellent and speedy mode of making engineers has been discovered 

by the Maryport and Carlisle Directors. It is to take on a young man at 

12s. a week for a short time, when, as a matter of course, he will become 

an engineer without any other tuition or labor. Confound Stephenson 

* From the London Railway Journal, for November, 1850. f Ibid. 

96 American Patents. 

and other engineers, what right have they to make the high charges they 
do when an ignorant fellow put upon a railway at 2s. a day becomes a 
railway engineer in a few weeks? "It is too bad." 

We know better here on our railroads, but the above process is very 
much the one by which our engine drivers and steamboat engineers are 
manufactured. Hence our numerous and rapidly increasing explosions, 
and the great loss, not only of money, (as on an ill-constructed railroad,) 
but of life. See the article on this subject in our January number. 



List of American Patents which issued from December 17, 1850, to January 7, 1851, 
(inclusive,) with Exemplifications by Charles M. Keller, late Chief Examiner of 
Patents in the U. S. Patent Office. 

27. For Improvements in Mills for Sawing ivith Circular Saws; Orlando Child, Gran- 
ville, Putnam county, Illinois, December 17. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new in my invention, is, 1st, the springs G and G 1 , carrying 
the journal boxes g and g l , attached and arranged in the manner substantially as herein 
described, for the purpose of guiding the saw, but at the same time allowing a sufficient 
degree of end play to the spindle to admit of its accommodating itself to the lateral spring- 
ing of the log. 

"2d, Arranging the saw N and its spindle on the swinging frame, which is adjustable 
so as to bring the saw N in any required position in a line forming part of a circle round 
the axis of the saw D, and adjusting the said saw X either in a line with, or to the right 
or left of, the saw D, \>y means of the slot in the spring G 1 , through which the bolt passes, 
in the manner herein described, or in any manner substantially the same." 

28. For Improvements in Machinery for Doubling and Twisting Silk, SfC; Joseph 
Conant and Lucius Dimock, Northampton, Hampshire county, Massachusetts, De- 
cember 17. 
Claim. — "What we claim as new, is so constructing the catch-bar that all the threads 
or silk, either before or after being twisted, maybe secured by the catchers simultaneously, 
by simply bringing the bar with its catchers down upon the threads, and whilst in that 
position, causing all the helical springs to act on the catchers at the same time, by suddenly 
disengaging the slide lock plate from the end of the bar, the mortises in the said plate being 
so formed as to allow each catch to be opened separately without the aid of the lock plate; 
or all to be opened simultaneously by moving said lock plate longitudinally in the manner 
herein set forth." 

29. For an Improvement in Apparatus for Emptying Privies,- Florimond Datichiry, 
City of New York, December 17. 

"My improvements consist in the addition of a chamber or gasometer to the receiver of 
the apparatus for emptying vaults of privies by atmospheric pressure; the object being to 
allow space for the gases contained in the suction pipes and those arising from the fecal 
matter, without their occupying part of the receiver itself, and the gasometer being sepa- 
rated from the receiver and communicating with it only by a small passage, the matter 
(which entirely fills the receiver in consequence of the additional space provided for the 
gases) has but a small portion of its surface exposed to the gases, and is thus prevented 
from becoming mixed with them." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new therein, is the gasometer connected with the receiver 
as described, for the purpose of keeping the gases separated from the fecal matter, and pre- 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 97 

venting their mixture as set forth, and serving also as a reservoir for the compressed gases 
from which the power for expelling the contents of the receiver is obtained." 

30. For an Improvement in Carriages; Edward Everett and Charles Everett, Jr., City 
of Washington, D. C, December 17. 
Claim. — "What we claim as new therein, is the joint on which the fore carriage turns, 
when placed in rear of the fore axle, in combination with the segment on which the end 
of the perch rests, substantially as described, for the purpose of allowing the carriage to 
be turned in a small space, without having the fore wheels to run under the body or in- 
terfering with the hind wheels." 

31. For Improvements in Machinery for Cutting and Bending Sheet Metal; Joseph F. 
Flanders, Newburyport, Essex county, Massachusetts, December 17. 

Claim. — "I claim the improvement in the bending mechanism, the same consisting in 
the combination of the conic or approximately conic roller or projection with the cylindric 
part or roller, and with the circular disks or holders, in the manner as above described, 
and so as, when pressed against the tin, to gradually bend it over and down upon the disk 
or holder, so as to enable the roller to pass over and upon the tin, and complete the bend- 
ing of it down upon the periphery of the holder. 

"I also claim the improvement in the construction of the gauge, whereby it is adapted 
to operate when the tin plate is rotated in a vertical plane, such improvement consisting 
in arranging its supporting journal at an inclination to the horizontal plane, and applying 
a weighted arm or its mechanical equivalent to the gauge as seen in the drawings, or so 
that the gravitating power of the weighted arm shall restore the gauge to its original and 
proper position under the holders, after it has been freed from the pressure of the surplus 
tin, or part removed by the cutters." 

32. For an Improvement in Seed Planters,- Joseph W. Fawkes, Bart township, Lancaster 
county, Pennsylvania, December 17. 

"The nature and object of my invention and improvement consists in sowing grain, 
wheat, and oats with more constant regularity, by curved slots or apertures in the hori- 
zontal cog wheels, as arranged under the hopper, with the devices for gearing and ungear- 
ing, and the adjusting shovels." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the peculiar construction of the adjustable 
shovels to clear the mouth of any obstructions. 

"I also claim the mode and manner of sowing the grain through the slots, as herein 

33. For Improved Expansion Gear for Horizontal Engines,- Samuel H. Gilman, Cin- 

cinnati, Ohio, December 17. 

"The main object of this invention is to provide for a horizontal engine, operated by 
puppet valves, an economical form of cut-off movement capable of adjustment to any point 
of the stroke, the mechanism being of such a structure as to be adjustable either while the 
engine is in full activity or otherwise." 

Claim. — "What I claim therein as new, is withdrawing the sliding tongue of the lifter 
of the supply valves of steam cylinders, so as to trip the valves at any desired point, by an 
adjustable prong which is made to slide upon the arm holding the usual fixed prong, by 
the action of a tappet on the rock shaft, when this adjustment is effected by means of the 
shackle and links within the steam chest, the shackle and links being elevated or depressed 
by an index arm without-side the steam chest, and the whole being arranged and operating 
substantially as herein described." 

34. For a Machin e for Making Eyelets; Lucien E. Hicks, Assignor to Wm. A. C hurchill 

and James Stanley, Berlin, Hartford county, Connecticut, December 17. 

"The nature of this invention consists in so arranging and combining various mechanical 
elements and devices in a single machine as to facilitate the manufacture of metallic eye- 
lets, the machine forming one eyelet complete by each revolution of the principal shaft." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the sliding bolster, constructed with its two 
dies c and e, and aperture, in combination with the feeding tube, punches, and clearers; 

Vol. XXI.-Tuibd Seeiss.— No. 2.— Febhuaut, 1851. 9 

98 American Patents. 

the whole being constructed, arranged, and operated substantially in the manner and for 
the purpose herein set forth." 

35. For an Improvement in Grain Cradle Fingers,- Joel Houghton, Ogden, Monroe 
county, New York, December 17. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the insertion of a metallic plate into the 
edge of a cradle finger by means of rivets or other fastenings, so as to keep the plate and 
finger permanently attached together and in their place, and thereby effectually prevent 
the finger from straightening or springing back when used in damp grain — prevent the 
grain from wearing it away, and prevent the grain from sliding endwise off the cradle be- 
fore the cradler gets it round into his own swath." 

3G. For an Improved Sash Fastener,- William H. Lazelle, Hartford, Connecticut, De- 
cember 17. 

"My improvement consists in using a cam secured in a slot or mortice in a plate, by 
means of the shaft of the knob or handle passing through holes in ears or projecting pieces 
on the back side of the plate, serving as a fulcrum pin; and also (by means of a lip on this 
fulcrum pin and a slot in one of the projections) as a fastener to prevent the cam from 
being turned back by any force whatever, thus locking or fastening the lower sash down 
with absolute safety, while the knob or handle serves to turn the cam back when it is de- 
sired to raise the sash, in the first instance, and to let it down at all times." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the cam with the plate, 
when these are combined with the shaft and lip for turning back the cam when necessarv, 
and locking it to fasten down the lower sash, when the whole is constructed, arranged, and 
combined substantially as herein described." 

37. For an Improved Arrangement of Steam Engine,- Richard F. Loper and John W. 
Nystrom, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 17. 
"Our invention consists in a particular arrangement of the beams, connecting rods, and 
crank shaft of the two cylinders of a double cylinder engine, by which the crank shaft is 
forced to make a complete revolution while the piston of one engine is making a single 
stroke, or is traveling from one end of the cylinder to the other, while at the same time 
the arrangement of the various parts is such that the crank to which the two connecting 
rods are applied cannot be placed in any position in which the power acting upon one of 
the connecting rods is not tending to turn it. The crank shaft of our engine, therefore, 
makes twice as many revolutions as that of engines of the usual construction, in which 
this shaft makes but one revolution for each double stroke of the piston, while at the same 
time this increase in speed is obtained without the employment of cog gearing, or of any 
similar device." 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the arrangement herein set forth of the 
beams, connecting rods, and crank of the two cylinders of a double cylinder engine." 

38. For an Improved C ' omposition for Making Cores for Casting,- Edward Rees, Cin- 
cinnati, Ohio, December 17. 
Claim. — "What I claim therein as new, is the use of white of egg as a component in the 
preparation of loam for cores and other similar things intended for contact with molten 
metal, in the manner herein described, limiting myself to that use of white of egg, but not 
limiting myself to the precise proportions mentioned, while the same result is obtained by 
the said addition to the ingredients ordinarily used in loam for cores." 

39. For an Improvement in Mills for Grinding,- John Rogers, Jr., Jackson, Jackson 
county, Michigan, December 17. 

"My improvement relates to the manner of supporting the bed stone by a universal 
joint upon a lever raised and lowered by a screw for raising and lowering the bed stone, 
the universal joint rendering the bed stone self-adjustive in relation to the runner. 

"Also to the formation of an annular space between the stones and runner, in combina- 
tion with a funnel-shaped space beneath the bed, for the free discharge of the meal and 
increase of draft. 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 99 

"Likewise in the arrangement of a fan and fan-case, in connexion with the inclined 
spout leading from the bottom of the funnel-shaped portion of the case, for promoting a 
downward draft through the machine, for keeping the meal cool, preventing it from sweat- 
ing or clogging, and for promoting a free discharge of the meal as fast as it is ground." 

Claim. — "What I claim is hanging the bed stone (when the shaft or spindle to which 
the runner is attached passes through the same) by means of the before described universal 
joint, in combination with the lever and screw as aforesaid." 

40. For an Improvement in Oscillating Seeding Cylinders; David E.Kohr, Charlestown, 
Jefferson county, Virginia, December 17. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new and of my invention, is oscillating the seeding cylinder 
upon its axis for the supply and discharge of the seed as described, by means of the com- 
bination of the lever, sprmg, and pins with the propelling wheel, as described." 

41. For an Improved Instrument for Laying Dow?i Curves of Ships' Timbers,- Chas. 
Scales, Bath, Lincoln county, Maine, December 17. 

"My instrument consists of an outer flexible rib, by means of which the outside curve of 
the timber is marked down; of a similar inner rib, by means of which the inside curve of 
the same timber is marked; of a series of cross-ties, by which the two ribs are connected, 
and of a clamp bar and clamp screws, by means of which the mould is fixed in any required 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is the adjustable mould, constructed substan- 
tially as herein set forth, so that it can be set to the outside and inside curves of the tim- 
bers of a vessel, and can then be used to mark them upon the wood of which they are to 
be formed." 

42. For an Improvement in Artificial Legs; W. C. Stone, Boston, Massachusetts, De- 
cember 17. 

"The nature of my invention consists in providing a stop in the knee joint of the artifi- 
cial leg, to prevent the revolution of the joint until the step is taken, as, in the case of 
other legs, there is nothing to prevent the outslip of the joint, and consequently a fall." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the application of the whole action from 
the heel up to the knee joint in the artificial leg, which action prevents the knee joint from 
turning, slipping, or revolving out in the act of stepping, as herein described, using for 
that purpose the aforesaid springs, rod, lever, and pins, or any other substantially the same 
and which will produce the intended effect." 

43. For an Improvement in Lamps for Lighting Gas Burners; Robert Thompson, 
Lowell, Middlesex county, Massachusetts, December 17. 
Claim. — '"What I claim as my invention, is the protector as made and applied to the 
lamp, and so not only to be capable of exploding or inflaming the gas brought into con- 
tact with it, substantially as specified, but of protecting fibrous matters which may come 
in contact with the protector, from direct exposure to the flame." 

44. For an Improvement in Fanning Mills; Eleazer Bless, Minerva, Mason county, 
Kentucky, December 17. 
Claim. — "What I claim therein as my invention, is the supporting and regulating the 
motion of the, sieves by means of the rollers, or their equivalents, and the spiral springs so 
arranged as to press the shoe or sieve frame down upon the rollers, steadying its motion, 
and, to a certain extent, preventing any jar at the end of each vibration, substantially in 
the manner and for the purpose as herein set forth." 

45. For an Improvement in the Manufacture of Starch from Maize,- Thomas Bragg, 
West Milton, Ohio, December 24. 
"The object of my improvement in the manufacture of starch, is the more complete ex- 
traction of the starchy matter by the liberation of that portion which, in the natural grain, 

100 American Patents. 

is too intimately blended with insoluble matter to yield to the ordinary disintegration and 

Claim. — "Having thus fully described the nature of my invention, and my process for 
the extraction of starch from corn and other similar grain or seeds, what I claim therein 
as new is the method substantially as described, of extracting from maize, and other gTain 
or seeds subject to rapid putrescent decomposition, that portion of the starch which is in- 
extricable either by mechanical means or by fermentation of the meal, by the subjection 
of the unbroken grain to an incipient germination, which is arrested at that stage of the 
vegetative action at which the starch that exists in an insoluble combination, being liberated, 
is capacitated for precipitation along with the free starch, by any of the usual processes of 
maceration and elutriation." 

46. For an Improvement in Dampening Paper for Copying Presses,- Joseph Burnham, 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 24. 

''The object of my invention consists in a tablet of some substance which is impermeable 
to moisture, and whose surface is roughened or burred up evenly throughout its whole 
extent, in such manner that the inequalities thereon will retain a sufficient amount of 
moisture to dampen a sheet of paper to the requisite degree." 

Claim. — "I do not confine myself to the employment of sheet metal as a material for 
my dampening tablets, as many other impermeable materials are well suited to the purpose; 
but what I claim as my invention is a dampening tablet constructed substantially as herein 
described, of some impermeable material." 

47. For an Improved Means for Preventing Back-Lash in the Feed Motion of Planing 

Machines; Thomas H. Burridge, Jersey City, New Jersey, December 24. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the use of two racks, placed parallel and fixed 
to the traveling table, which racks are driven by two separate pinions on the same shaft, 
one of which is firmly keyed to the shaft, and the other is fitted loose, but with a driving 
adjusting arrangement which will admit of the adjusting pinion being slightly moved, and 
the shaft also slightly turned in the opposite direction, so that when the teeth in the pinions 
and racks have ton much play, caused by wear, the 'back-lash' consequent upon wear in 
the ordinary way, is, by this adjusting arrangement, obviated, the pinions being set so that 
the teeth of either pinion will bear only on one of their sides against the teeth in the racks, 
one driving the teeth forwards and the other backwards alternately, the shaft on which are 
the pinions being driven by a screw and pinion." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination, in the traveling table 
motion of planing machines, of two racks, L 1 L 2 , sheets 1 and 2, operated on by two se- 
parate pinions, M N, one of which is made adjustable in the manner shown, by set screws 
m m m m, with accompanying parts, and so arranged that the pinions M X may be set as 
to alternately operate, the one to drive the table forwards, and the other to drive it back- 
wards, for the purposes herein set forth, and operating as shown and described, or in any 
manner substantially the same." 

48. For Improvements in Hydraulic Blowers,- Jeremiah Darling, Cincinnati, Ohio, De- 

cember 24. 

"My invention consists of an apparatus by which a continuous and powerful blast is 
produced for smeltintr, forging, and other purposes, which works with little friction and 
requires but a small power to drive it, and being simple in its construction is not expen- 
sive; and it is not liable to get out of order. One great advantage over cylinder blowers 
is, that it does not require to be stopped to pack pistons, &c, which, in smelting operations, 
frequently produces injury to the iron by stopping the blast. All that is necessary to keep 
this apparatus continually in action, till worn out, is to keep up the supply of water, which 
can be done while in action." 

Claim. — "Having thus fully described my improvements, what I claim therein is, 1st, 
the apparatus substantially as above described, consisting of a revolving drum, partly filled 
with water, and provided with chambers, valves, &c, which cause the air to enter at one 
hollow journal, and escape in a compressed state at the other, for the purpose of producing 
blast as set forth. 

"2d, I claim the manner of separating the water accidentally mixed with the blast, by 
means of the partitions and cells in the chambers (/ and n.) 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 101 

"3d, I claim the pipe («) for conducting the water accumulated in the chamber (n) to 
the hollow journal (c) and returning it to the drum, substantially as described." 

49. For an Improvement in Vats for Tanning Hides,- Lewis C. England, Williams- 
burgh, New York, December 24. 

''The nature of my invention consists in an improvement on such vats, or tanks, used 
in the various processes of preparing leather, as are fitted with revolving handles. In vats 
of the usual make, the skins or hides cannot be kept in a state of agitation throughout 
the whole of the vat, as some will lodge in the lower corners, &c, and the handling ot 
the remainder then requires a greater expenditure of power, in consequence of the in- 
creased resistance. By the construction in such vats of a semi-cylindrical bottom of slats, 
I am enabled to effect the handling of the hides, in the various processes of liming, bailing, 
scouring, washing, and tanning, far more rapidly and economically than in vats of the 
usual make." 

Claim. — "I do not claim herein the use of the revolving handles, as already secured to 
me by letters patent bearing date of June 19th, 1847; but what I claim as of my own in- 
vention, is the slats, as described, in combination with the vat and the handles, substan- 
tially in the manner and for the purposes herein set forth." 

50. For an Improvement in Printing Presses,- Charles W. Hawkes, Boston, Massa- 
chusetts, December 24. 

"My improvements are applicable to printing any size of sheets, large or small, but 
more particularly for small job work and card printing." 

Claim* — "What I claim as my invention, is, 1st, the combination of the rocker shaft, 
C, and rocker arm, D, and the fork lever, A, with the swing platen, substantially in the 
manner and for the purpose herein set forth. 

"2d, I claim for feeding cards, the slide, A - , and rods, m, in combination with the swing 
platen, substantially in the manner and for the purpose herein set forth. 

3d, I claim the combination and arrangement of the gauge, s, the spring, u, the lever, v, 
the trip, w, the catch, x, and the wire, y, with the swing platen, in the manner and for the 
purpose herein described. 

"4th, I claim the knees, e, to suppo!t the inking rollers, in combination with the spiral 
springs, h, threads,/, the plate, /, and the set screws, A-, substantially in the manner and 
for the purpose herein set forth." 

51. Fo : a i Apparatus for Operating Window Blinds and their Slats,- John Jones, Clyde. 
New York, December 24» 

"The nature of my invention consists in an arrangement, by which the blind or slats 
may be opened and closed, and the blind locked from the inside of the building without 
raising the sash. 

CIA a. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the shaft, P, having 
two levers, J G, thereto attached, with the connecting rod L, attached to the blind or shutter; 
the whole arranged substantially as herein described, and constituting a blind or shutter 

"1 also claim, in combination, the hollow shaft, I, having a lever, D, at one end of the 
same, and two arms, B H, at its other extremity; the bolt A, with its bracket N, and slot 
tj; and the two pins C C, attached to the blind rod E; the whole forming an apparatus for 
working the slats and fastening the blind when closed, substantially as herein described." 

52. For an Improvement in Attachments to Pumps for Agitating the Surface of the 
'Water in the Well,- William D. Mayfield, Elkton, Kentucky, December 24. 

'•The object of my invention is to keep the water in a cistern or well, when the water 
is drawn by a pump, equally as fresh and sweet as when drawn in a bucket, and the na- 
ture of my invention consists in the application, to the piston rod of a pump, of what I 
term an agitator, which, floating on the water, will, as the piston rod is operated, disturb 
the top of the water, and thus prevent its stagnation." 

Claim. — "What I claim therein as new is the application of a series of floating blades 
to the rod that operates the plunger of pumps for cisterns or wells, for the purpose of agi- 


102 Jknerican Patents. 

tating the surface of the water, and this I claim, whether the blades and rod are reciprocally 
prepared in the manner described, or in any other equivalent way to effect the same pur- 

53. For an Improvement in Instruments for Vaccinating; Henry Mellish, Walpole, 
New Hampshire, December 24. 

"The nature of my invention consists in combining with the lancet an apparatus for 
taking up and discharging the vaccine matter into the puncture made to receive it, before 
the lancet is withdrawn." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the sliding lancet B,when in combination 
with the cylinder A, charger E, piston H, and springs J and K, in the manner and for the 
purpose above set forth." 

54. For an Improved Method of Loosening Metallic C ores from Hollow Castings; John 
C. Parry, Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, December 24. 

"It is a well known fact that iron shrinks as it cools, and a kettle of the kind I am de- 
scribing will shrink one-eighth of an inch to every foot in diameter." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention in the above described mode of casting, is the 
application of cold water to the core or inner metallic flask of a hollow casting when the 
metal begins to cool, so as to loosen the core, (by the contraction caused by the action of 
the water,) sufficiently to remove it without injury to the casting." 

55. For an Improvement in Port Folios,- James Shaw, Providence, Rhode Island, Decem- 
ber 24. 

A new and improved "portfolio designed to keep sheets of music, drawings, engravings, 
or other papers in, and so arranged and constructed that the sheets may be successively 
added to, and firmly bound or secured therein, so as to preserve them while in use, in like 
manner as if they were bound into a book in the usual mode." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the roller back, in combination with the 
strings stretched thereon, the device, or its equivalent, at the ends, for securing and for 
tightening or loosening the strings, and the binders to secure the sheets in their proper 

56. For I mprovements in Looms for Weaving Figured Fabrics,- Samuel T. Thomas, 
Lowell, and Edward Everett, Lawrence, Massachusetts, December 24. 

"Our improvement in the jacquard loom consists of an arrangement and combination of 
harness shafts or bars, as a substitute for the knot cord, by which arrangemement we dis- 
tribute the many mail cords or heddles of the knot cord at any required distance apart, and 
disconnected from each other, along the length of the horizontal harness shafts or bars, by 
which a very material advantage is gained, as we thus produce a much less angle upon 
the mail cords or heddles, than by giving a more uniform strain upon the warp, which 
renders the loom applicable to broad work; also, by rendering each mail cord or heddle in- 
dependent of every other mail coid, and capable of being transferred from any one harness 
shaft to any other harness shaft or bar, the operator is enabled to change the mounting or 
cording with greater facility than by the mode heretofore, adopted. 

"Our second is to be found in the peculiar means or manner of producing the rotary 
movement of the pattern prism." 

Claim. — "What we claim is the improvement on the jacquard loom as herein described, 
to wit: the horizontal harness shafts or bars, of such length as may be desired, (according 
to the width of the cloth,) upon which the several mail cords or heddles, which constitute 
the harness or entire mounting, are distributed at any required distance from each other; 
together with their hooks, pins, loops, or holes, upon or in which the several mail cords or 
heddles, which are caused to be raised or operated upon by one needle, or distinct move- 
ment, are separately fastened or attached. 

"We also claim the improvement for producing the rotation of the pattern prism; the 
same consisting in combining with the machinery that advances the pattern prism, other 
mechanism, which, at the same time, shall produce a movement of the draw pawl in an 
opposite direction as described." 

American Patents which issued in December, 1850. 103 

57. For an Improvement in Mills for Grinding,- Joseph N. Walker, Cincinnati, Ohio, 
December 24. 

"The nature of my invention consists in constructing a portable mill with the shell of 
cast iron, and is arranged so as to keep the entire inside clear of dirt or dust, and at the 
same time have easy access to the machinery within." 

Claim — "Having thus fully described my invention, what I claim therein as new is the 
combination of the hollow spindle A, feeding tube E, and adjustable screw a, with the 
gimbal /, when said gimbal is placed above the openings through which the grain or other 
material to be ground passes to the surfaces of the stones, as herein fully set forth and re- 
presented, for the purpose of having an uninterrupted feed through and past the gimbal." 

58. For an Improvement in Hot Air Furnaces,- George E. Waring, Stamford, Connecti- 
cut, December 24. 

"The object of the first part of my invention is to distribute the heat equally over the 
radiating surface, and, with this view, consists in carrying the heat and products of com- 
bustion up to the top of the furnace, and then causing them to descend between a cylinder 
of tubes surrounding the fire-pot and the exterior casing of the furnace; the said tubes 
being connected together by short partitions, thereby forming an annular Hue between them 
and the external casing of the furnace down which the heat and products of combustion 

"And the second part of my invention consists in the use of a distributer, which not only 
admits of the free circulation through it of the external air, but by means of arched passages 
or channels opening into the annular flue above mentioned, causes the heat and products 
of combustion (which have been brought down the said cylindrical flue) to enter the exit 
chamber which forms the base of the furnace, and back to the smoke pipe. 

"And the third part of my invention consists in admitting the air to be warmed into a 
chamber warmed by radiation from the fire-pot, and from the descending current from the 
fire, and then causing the same to pass up through the body of the furnace, through a series 
of tubes arranged in the form of a cylinder, by the radiation of the heat from the fire-pot 
which they surround, and from the descending current which surrounds them." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the annular flue between the cylinder of 
tubes and the external casing of the furnace, for the purpose of distributing the heat equally 
over the external casing, substantially as described. 

"I also claim the distributer, or annular distributing chamber, provided with arched pas- 
sages for the purpose of carrying the heat and products of combustion to the exit chamber, 
and which also admit of the free circulation of the external air in and around the fire-pot, 
substantially in the manner and for the purpose described." 

59. For an Improvement in Machines for Weighing Grain; Samuel R. Wilmot, La- 
fayette, Indiana, December 24. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the peculiarity of the weighing beam; likewise 
the manner of arranging the gate so as to tilt the vibrating or weighing scale by the closing 
of said gate, which, on its return, strikes the gate-rod and raises it; also the manner of 
stopping the operation of the machine by means of a bolt or catch, thrown from the indi- 
cator at any given period." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is the employment of the gate-rod/, connected to the 
sliding gate e, and weighing beam d, in combination with the said sliding gate, and weigh- 
ing beam, constructed and operating as aforesaid, for opening and closing the gate, to ad- 
mit the grain to the dish or scale, or exclude it therefrom at the required periods, by the 
ascent and descent of the dish or scale, during the operation of weighing and discharging 
the grain, as herein fully set forth. 

"I also claim the manner of attaching the vibrating weighing scale / to the weighing 
beam d, so that the said weighing scale, as soon as the required quantity of grain shall 
have entered it, shall descend and close the gate, and bring the hammer-end, y, of the gate- 
rod against the lip of the dish or scale, and cause the scale to turn on its centre m, and 
immediately ascend and strike the gate-rod, and re-open the gate, and assume its former 
position for another weight of grain, — every operation of the weighing apparatus being in- 
dicated by an index of the ordinary construction affixed to the end of the scales — the said 
scale being arranged below a hopper of the ordinary construction. 

''I likewise claim turning the short end of the weighing beam upwards, in the manner 

104 American Patents. 

represented in fig. 1, and placing the arms to which the bale of the scale is suspended on 
a line drawn through the fulcrum of the weighing beam, forming an angle of about 50° 
with a horizontal line passing through said fulcrum, for the purpose of increasing the le- 
verage of the short arm of the beam, simultaneously with diminishing the leverage of the 
long arm as the scale or weighing dish descends, by which the gate is acted upon with 
increased speed and force, inclosing the same." 


1. For an Improvement in Daguerreotype Pictures,- Charles J. Anthony, Pittsburg, 
Pennsylvania, January 1. 

* * "And which improvements are applicable to all operations in which the agency 
of light can be employed to produce fac simile or representations of animate or inanimate 
objects,, by acting on chemical substances placed on the surface of metal plates, or on or 
in any other fit material, properly prepared to receive the chemical substance or substances 
on which it is desired that the light shall operate to produce the intended effect." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new and of my own invention, is the application of transpa- 
rent or translucent materials of varying thicknesses and forms, separately or in combination 
with each other, and the application of substances or materials, more or less opaque, either 
separately or in combination with transparent or translucent materials, both or either when 
such applications and combinations are separately, consecutively, or conjointly employed, 
for the purpose of manipulating the action of light on chemical substances, substantially 
in the manner and with similar effects to those described and shown." 

2. For Improvements in Car Couplings,- Silas M. Cochran, Baltimore, Maryland, Janu- 
ary 1. 

"The effect to be attained by this invention is the disconnexion of such cars and loco- 
motives as may be thrown, when in motion, from their places on the track, from those 
remaining upon it, and thereby rendering such accidents less dangerous to passengers, and 
preventing damage to cars, &c." 

Claim. — "But what I do claim as my improvement is, in combination with the curved 
arms or ends X 1 X 1 , of the jaws XX, the turning slotted bar L, attached to the casting T, 
(fig. 2,) having its ends, L 1 L 1 , curved in such a manner as to act as levers, and the spring 
B, for keeping the slotted bar L, and jaws X, in their proper position; the disconnexion of 
the cars being effected by the contact of the curved arms or ends L 1 of the turning bar L 
with the draft beam P, when the preceding car runs off the track, — when either of the 
curved armsX 1 of the jaws will be relieved from the slot of the turning bar L, and permit 
the connecting bolt to pass therefrom." 

3. For an Improved Nozzle for Lead Pipe Machines; John B. Collan, Beading, Penn- 
sylvania, January 1. 

"My machine is constructed to manufacture lead pipe, by pumping melted lead through 
a corrugated nozzle or die in which a mandril is supported, the nozzle and mandril being 
constructed in such manner that, in forming the pipe, the lead, in its passage through the 
tubular nozzle, is strongly compressed, thus forming pipe of increased density and freedom 
from flaws." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the corrugated nozzle with its mandril, 
through which melted lead is pumped for the purpose of making pipe, as herein set forth." 

4. For an Improvement in Planiiig Machines for Dressing the Edges of Boards,- Win. 
E. Cornell, Boston, Massachusetts, January 1. 
"The first part relates to the method of gearing the top and bottom feed rollers, so that 
they shall move together and remain in gear, to whatever extent they may be separated 
by varying thicknesses of planks; and this part of my invention consists in communicating 
motion from one roller to the other by means of a cog pinion on the arbor of each, con- 
nected by a cog wheel with an outer and inner range of cogs, the inner range engaging 
the cogs of the pinion on the arbor of the lower roller, and the outer range engaging the 
cogs of the pinion on the arbor of the upper roller; the arbor of the cog wheel being hung 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 105 

and connected by a link or links with the arbor of the lower roller, and by another link 
or links with the arbor of the upper roller, so that as the rollers are drawn nearer together 
or separated, the cog wheel will, by reason of these links, vibrate between the two pinions, 
and remain in gear with them. 

"The second part of my invention relates to the method of operating one of the cutter 
wheels, for either edging, or tongucing, or grooving the tapering edge of plank; and this 
part of my invention consists in operating the machinery which causes the cutter wheel 
gradually to approach towards, or recede from, the line of motion of the plank, by the 
passage of the plank over, and in contact with, one or more cogs or spur wheels, so that 
this motion shall be received from, and correspond with the motion of, the plank. 

"And this part of my invention also consists in interposing, at some point in the gearing 
between the wheel or wheels operated by the plank, and the sliding frame or carriage 
which carries the cutter wheel, a reversing gear, for the purpose of setting the machine to 
work from the narrow towards the wide end, or from the wide towards the narrow end, 
and, if suspended, will edge the plank parallel to the other edge." 

Claim. — "What I claim, therefore, as my invention, is the method substantially as de- 
scribed, communicating motion from the bottom to the top roller, by the two pinions com- 
bined with the wheel having the inner and outer rim of cogs, by means of the joint links, 
substantially as described, and for the purpose specified. 

"I also claim operating the machinery for carrying the cutter wheel towards or from the 
line of motion of the plank, by the passage of the plank over, and in contact with, a spur 
wheel or wheels, substantially as described, whereby the motion of the cutter wheel, for 
edging tapering planks, will be made to correspond with the motion of the plank itself, as 

"I also claim interposing between the wheel or wheels actuated by the plank and the 
carriage of the cutter wheel, a running motion substantially as described, by means of 
which the machine can be made to act on the plank from the narrow to the wide end, or 
vice versa, or, by suspending its operation, edge the plank with parallel sides, as described." 

5. For an Improvement in Water Metres; John Ericsson, City of New York, January 1. 

"The leading object of my invention is to measure the quantity of water which passes 
thruuyh the main and branch pipes for the supply of cities. It is, therefore, important 
that the said instrument should possess the combined properties of cheapness of construc- 
tion, accuracy of measurement, simplicity, compactness, and durability." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is connecting the two pistons with the two 
cranks of a crank shaft, in manner substantially as described, so that at the end of each 
stroke of either of the pistons it shall remain at rest while the crank shaft is being impelled 
by the other piston, so that the valves shall be shifted whilst the piston is at rest, for the 
purpose substantially as described. 

"I also claim, in an instrument for the purpose herein specified, determining the range 
of motion of the piston, by means of stops connected with the cylinders and the pistons, 
substantially as described, in combination with the connexion of the pistons with the crank 
or cranks, by means of a joint having sufficient play to permit the pistons alternately to 
remain at rest while the crank shaft continues to rotate, substantially as described." 

"I also claim enclosing all the moving parts of an instrument substantially such as above 
described in the surrounding casing, through which the water or other fluid passes to be 
measured, constructed and operating in the manner and for the purpose substantially as 

6. For an Improvement in Churns,- Daniel Fisher, College Corner, Ohio, January 1. 

"The nature of my improvements consists in having a horizontal cylinder or tube, con- 
necting a double dasher churn, which is provided at each end with perforated plates or 
cutters. This tube or cylinder serves as a receptacle and condenser of air; the perforated 
cutters answer the double purpose of cutting the cream in its passage to and fro, and only 
allowing sufficient cream to enter through the perforations, at each stroke of the dashers, 
to keep the tube half full or thereabouts, thereby creating a partial vacuum in the tube, 
which becomes filled with air. When a r;i]>id commotion is produced in the cream bv the 
action of the dashers, the air in the tube is forced to mingle with the cream, and find its 
way out through the opposite end of the tube, and from thence up through the cream ia 
the churn." 

Claim. — "What I claim therein as new, is connecting two vertical churns by a hori- 

106 American Patents. 

zontal tube at their bottoms, substantially as described, (said tube being about ten inches 
long, and about one-fifth of the capacity of one of the vertical cylinders,) in combination 
with the perforated cutters E E, operating in the manner and for the purpose herein fully 

— 4 C — *K >> 

set forth." 

7. For a Method of Connecting the Slide Valve with the Rock Shaft; Samuel H. Oilman, 
Cincinnati, Ohio, January 1. 
Claim. — "Having thus fully described the nature and construction of my improvements 
in oscillating steam engines, what I claim therein as new is the tubujarvent, (13,) serving 
the two-fold purpose of a guiding rod, and of a clamp for the ball joint at the foot of the 
valve pitman." 

8. For an Improvement in Machines for Assorting Broom Corn,- Lorenzo D. Grosvenor, 
Harvard, Massachusetts, January 1. 

"I would remark that I do not intend to confine my maehine to the work of sorting sprigs 
of broom corn for the manufacture of house brooms, as it may probably be adapted to the 
assorting of various other matters, such as bristles for brushes, feathers for dusters, &c." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the endless platform, 
the roller G, and the series of pressure rollers, or any mechanical equivalents therefor, as 
arranged and made to operate together, substantially in the manner and for the purpose 
as herein before described; and in combination therewith, I claim the rotary shears and the 
weighted roller m' , or their mechanical equivalents; the whole being applied and made to 
operate together essentially as herein before specified." 

9. For an Improvement in Quilting Frames and Apparatus; Abraham Kaufman, Orrs- 
town, Pennsylvania, January 1. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the movable frame, working on the con- 
necting piece 0, connecting two slides with wickers, for the purpose of stretching the quilt 
to any desirable length or breadth, as the case may be, in combination with the slides No. 
1 and 2, working in sections C C, by which the quilt may be enlarged or diminished, and 
the rollers No. 1 and 2, as set forth." 

10. For an Improvement in Spring Carriage Wheels,- John Lamb and Charles H. Root, 
McDonough, New York, January 1. 

"The nature of mir invention consists in the use of curved flat steel spokes, secured to 
the rim of the wheel at two points of each spoke, and resting on the hub or nave, through 
slots in the edsje of the hub, with grooves or notches at their extremities overlapping an 
annular projection in the hub, and further secured by the axle box, which has grooves into 
which the ends of the spokes fit and butt up against the axle box, being secured to the 
hub by bolts and projections on the edge of the plate covering the hub, which fits into the 
slots formed for the spokes, and serving to keep the spokes in their places." 

('In: in. — -What we claim as our invention, is the construction of the spokes BBBB 
BBBB, of flat steel, split or divided, ami curved as at a a, and secured as at b b, fig. 1, 
for the purpose and in the manner herein shown." 

11. For an Improvement in Candlesticks; James Manning, Middletown, Connecticut, 
January 1. 
"The nature of my invention consists in attaching an eccentric flanch to the upper part 
of the tube of the candlestick, said flanch having a circular cap which turns upon its upper 
surface, and is kept in its proper position by means of clasps or lips which set over the 
edge of the flanch. There is a circular orifice through the cap, eccentric with its periphery, 
and corresponding in size with the diameter of the bore of the tube. When the cap is 
placed in such a position as that its orifice is directly over the bore of the tube, a candle 
of the same diameter as the bore of the tube is admitted; but when the cap is turned from 
this position, its orifice being eccentric with its periphery, a portion of the tube is covered 
by the cap and its aperture consequently contracted. By this means candles of a less 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 107 

diameter than the bore of the tube are held firmly in it. There is a guard attached to the 
cap which passes a short distance over the tube, to prevent the candle being cut by the 
edge of the orifice of the cap." 

"Claim. — "What I claim as new, is the combination of the flanch B with the circular 
cap C, having its orifice. E eccentric with its periphery, and a guard G, operating in the 
manner and for the purpose as above described." 

12. For Improvements in Looms for Weaving Seamless Bags,- Shelden Northrop, New 
Milford, Connecticut, January 1. 

"The loom, as improved by me, is for the purpose of weaving seamless bags, by weaving 
the cloth double and united at one or both selvages for a given distance, to form the bag, 
and then, at given distances apart, weaving the cloth single, to unite the two cloths; and 
to this end, my invention consists in arranging and combining two series of cams, one 
series to work the warps so as to weave two cloths either united at one or at both selvages, 
and the other to interlock or interweave all the warps to make a single cloth, when this 
is combined with a shifting apparatus to connect, at pleasure, either series of cams with 
the treddlcs that operate the harness." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement in one loom of the two 
series of cams, substantially as described, one series for weaving the cloth double, and the 
other single, as herein described, in combination with the shifting the treddles from one 
scries of cams to the other, or the equivalent thereof, substantially as herein described." 

13. For an Improvement in Seed Planters; James P. Ross, Lewisburgh, Pennsylvania, 
January 1. 

"My improvement consists, 1st, in the drum by which the drill teeth are raised or lowered, 
at the same time the feed gear is thrown in or out of gear. 2d, In the mode of constructing 
the feed gear, so that it can be changed to sow different qualities of seed to the acre. And 
3d, in the manner of attaching the hollow drill teeth to their drag bars, so that, when 
coming in contact with any unyielding obstruction, they become wholly detached from the 

Claim. — "What I claim as new therein, is, 1st, the pinion h, working between fixed 
and movable racks, in combination with the elevating yoke c, and the loopy on its end, 
for the purpose of raising the teeth from the ground, and simultaneously throwing the 
feeding apparatus out of gear, substantially as set forth. 

"2d, I claim the feeding gear, as described, in combination with the lever g, and its ad- 
justable fulcrum, permitting the pinions to be reversed, by which double the number of 
changes can be made as can be done by the same number of pinions on the ordinary ar- 

14. For an Improvement in Printing Presses,- Stephen P. Ruggles, Boston, Massachu- 
setts, January 1. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the gauge bar for cards herein above referred 
to, in combination with the vibrating platen and stop finger, and crank which operates the 
same, in the manner and for the purpose herein above described. 

"I also claim the use of a segment of a cylinder, in combination with the stationary 
form bed. so that the rotary inking apparatus may move over the form, and then, after 
taking ink from the fountain, distribute it on said cylinder, as herein above set forth. 

"I also claim the movable bearers on the side of the form bed, arranged and operated 
substantially as above described, so as to be moved outwards when the inking rollers arc 
passing over the form, and drawn inwards when the sheet or tympan is moved up to said 

"I also claim regulating the delivery of the ink, by combining with the delivering roller 
a grooved ratchet wheel and weighted |>:i\vl band, operating with the lever stud, cam roller, 
and stop lever, substantially as herein above specified. 

"I also claim supporting the journals of one of the inking rollers on sliding bearers, so 
that it may be moved up against the delivering roller by means of studs on said bearers, and 
cams operating the same, as herein above set forth." 

108 American Patents. 

15. For no. Improvement in Machines fur Turning Irregular Forms; Jonathan Russell, 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 1. 

"The nature of my improvement consists in cutting spokes, &c, or any other irregular 
forms, to pattern, while the pattern and rough material are held fast and do not revolve. 
The pattern and rough material are both held fast in a carriage or carriages placed in the 
same line, or one above the other, which have a right and left longitudinal motion, and an 
up and down motion, along and by the cutting tools and tracers, or friction points. There 
are two carriages which have a lateral motion towards and from each other; in or on these 
two carriages are placed the tracers and the cutting tools. The tools and tracers work 
against and over the pattern and rough material, while the pattern and rough material 
move to the right and left along and by the cutting tools and the tracers, and up and down 
after they have reached the end of the pattern and rough material, or vice versa, the fric- 
tion points following the shape of the pattern, so that the rough material may be cut like 
the pattern. The tracers are made to set out or in, so that the rough material may be 
cut larger or smaller, on one or both sides, than the pattern." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination and arrangement of the 
horizontal carriages G G, working inside of, and moving vertically with, the carriage F, 
and operating as herein described, for the purpose of making the pattern and rough ma- 
terial pass and repass the tracers and cutting tools, or vice versa, when the same are used 
in combination with a pattern and rough block which do not revolve, and are presented 
to, and operated upon by, said tracers and cutters, as herein described and represented, and 
for the purposes fully set forth." 

16. For an Improvement in the Manufacture of India Rubber; Jonathan T. Trotter, 
City of Xew York, January 1. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the new and useful manner in which I prepare 
the rubber by means of an article or preparation of zinc." 

Claim. — "Having described my improved process for curing rubber, what I claim is 
the use and employment of zinc, substantially as prepared by the process above described, 
in combination with India rubber, for the purpose of curing or vulcanizing it, in form and 
manner as herein set forth, without the use of free sulphur in any way in combination 
with the rubber." 

17. For an Improvement in Corn Shelters,- Joshua M. C. Armsby, Worcester, Massa- 
chusetts, January 7. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is casting the fly-wheel of the corn sheller 
solid with the feeding wheel, so as to bring it between the two bearings of said wheel, as 
herein before set forth." 

18. For an Improvement in Spring Mattresses for Invalids,- David Baird, City of Xew 
York, January 7; ante' dated October 1, 1850. 
"The advantages of elevating spring mattresses to all, and more particularly to invalids, 
have been universally acknowledged, but as they have hitherto been constructed they have 
been imperfect, and subject to give rise to many inconveniences which have retarded their 
introduction to common use. Among these objections were the awkward modes of changing 
the position, the liability to get out of order, the unavoidable entrance of vermin into the 
interior, and the impossibility of effecting their expulsion when once they had taken pos- 

"My improvements consist in making the chamber which contains the springs, &c, so 
that all its parts shall be hermetically sealed against the entrance of vermin, and have none 
of its interior parts projecting through the case." 

Claim. — "What I claim is, 1st, the employment of the end stays b, having rule joints, 
allowing a limited range of motion, and standing in a bracing position, substantially in 
the manner and for the purposes set forth. 

"2d. I claim the centre supports for rendering that part of the mattress permanent when 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 109 

19. For an Improvement in Rotary Pumps,- Thomas Bonnet, City of New York, 
January 7. 

"The nature of my invention consists in combining with the rotating fan or paddle 
wheel, the annular space provided with curved water-ways, which answer the purpose of 
guides for the upward flow of the water." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement of the curved water-ways 
in the annular space above the fan or paddle, when in combination with the rotating fan 
or paddle wheel, substantially as described, and for the purpose specified. 

"And I also claim the self-adapting valves substantially as described, and governing the 
apertures leading to the annular space above, in combination with the rotating fan or 
paddle wheels, and the curved water-ways, substantially in the manner and for the pur- 
pose specified." 

20. For an Improvement in Looms for Weaving Tapestry Carpets with Parti-Colored 
Warps,- Erastus B. Bigelow, Clintonville, Massachusetts, January 7. 

-The first part of my invention consists in regulating the delivery or giving out of one 
or more separate warps or chains, by the separate tension of each warp, in combination 
with a ground or controlling warp, which determines the length of cloth made at each 
beat of the lathe, the delivery of said ground or controlling warp being also regulated by 
its tension, and controlled or fixed by a break, when the lathe beats up the cloth; the 
whole being combined with a regular and positive take-up motion for taking up the finish- 
ed cloth, whereby the figures of the cloth may be of a regular measured length, and the 
body of the cloth, as nearly as practicable, of regular texture, as described. 

"The second part of my invention consists in the employment of an index measuring 
apparatus, or the equivalent thereof, to indicate the amount of figuring warps which are 
taken up in the process of weaving, that the tension thereof may be varied, if more or less 
than sufficient is being woven in, when this is combined with an index measuring appa- 
ratus, or the equivalent thereof, to indicate the amount of cloth woven, whereby the figure 
on the warps and on the woven cloth can be relatively measured, to determine the entire 
figure, whilst the delivery of the figuring warps is self adapting to any slight inequality in 
the warps, or formation of the loops. 

"And the last part of my invention consists in the employment of grids or fingers, 
vibrating independent of the lathe, for drawing forward and giving tension to the weft, 
before the lathe completes its beating up movement; and also to retain the weft, whilst the 
lathe commences its back movement, to prevent such back movement of the lathe from 
drawing back the filling or weft." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is regulating the delivery or giving out of one 
or more warps or chains by the separate tension of each, substantially as specified, in com- 
bination with a ground or controlling warp, which determines the length of cloth made at 
each beat of the lathe, by having the delivery of the said ground or controlling warp regu- 
lated by its tension, and controlled by a break, or the equivalent thereof, when the lathe 
beats up, substantially as specified. 

"I also claim the employment of an index wheel or measuring apparatus, or the equiva- 
lent thereof, to indicate the length of figuring warps given out or taken up in the process 
of weaving, substantially as and for the purpose specified, when this is combined with an 
index or measuring apparatus to indicate the amount of cloth woven, substantially as and 
for the purpose specified. 

"And lastly, I claim the employment of fingers, moving or vibrating independently of 
the lathe, substantially as and for the purpose specified." 

21. For an Improvement in Fountain Inkstands,- Francis Draper, East Cambridge, 
Massachusetts, January 7. 

"By my improvements I shut off the main portion of the ink in the fountain from that 
in the tube, by having the tube, through which the ink is flowed or pressed into the cup, 
extended down (sometimes through a cylinder and sometimes not) to the bottom of the 
inkstand, and having a piece of cork or other similar substance fitted on its end, which 
bears against a similar piece of cork lilted in the bottom of the inkstand, and by screwing 
the tube (and cylinder when it is used) down, so as to have the cylinder or cork on the 
end of the tube pressed against the cork in the bottom of the fountain, the main body of 
ink in the fountain is entirely cut off from that in the tube." 

Vol. XXI. — Tuiitu Skriks. — No. 2. — Fkbiiuaht, 1S51. !0 

110 American Patents. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement for cutting off the com- 
munication between the cup and the main fountain of ink, by means of a layer of cork, or 
other similar substance, in the bottom of said fountain, and a cork or other similar stopper 
fitted on the bottom of the cup tube, or the lower end of said extended cup tube pressing 
against said layer as set forth; and, in combination with the above specified arrangement, 
the inner cylinder in which said stopper moves as a piston, by which the air is more effec- 
tually excluded from the main fountain of ink." 

22. For an Improvement in Machines for Jointing Staves,- William Maguire, Cincin- 
nati, Ohio, January 7. 

"My invention consists in apparatus for jointing the staves." 

Claim. — "What I claim therein as neV and original, is the arrangement substantially 
as herein described, of a circular rest, having a sliding motion to and fro in the plane of 
its axis, and having around its perimeter catches for the retention of the stave during the 
process of jointing, and rotating the distance from stave to stave at every forward stroke, 
and held fast for the action of the rotating jointers upon the stave at every return stroke, 
the jointers and circular rest being so arranged as to impart at the same time to the stave 
edge any given bevel and taper, according to the size and bilge of the cask." 

23. For an Improved Fly-Tumbler Lock for Fire-arms,- Stanhope W. Marston, City of 

New York, January 7. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the fly-tumbler, arranged and combined, 
with respect to the sear and the cock, in the manner and for the purposes set forth in my 

24. For an Improvement in Grass Harvesters,- Edward Neely, Savannah, Missouri, 

January 7. 

"My object in securing and suspending the different parts of my machine by straps, 
chains, and yielding joints, is to allow the parts to yield, when the machine is stopped by 
accident or other cause. In machines geared tight, when suddenly stopped, the bevel gear 
is often broken. In my invention this is entirely avoided, by allowing the different parts 
some motion or play, after the driving apparatus has stopped." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is the manner herein described of suspending the 
cutter ring /( , from the wheel /, by means of straps or other yielding material, for the pur- 
pose herein described. 

"I also claim the combination of the cutters i i i, &c, beveled cutter ring h, and straps 
g g, &c, for the purpose of raising the cutter ring over any obstruction coming against 
the edge of the knife, as herein described. 

"I also claim the manner of arranging the guide board m , standard n, arm o, and strap 
r, secured as described, for the purpose of guiding the machine, and allowing the parts to 
yield to a sudden stopping of the machine, or to irregularities in the ground, for the purpose 
and in the manner described." 

25. For an Improvement in Electro-Magnetic Engines,- Jacob Neff, Philadelphia, Penn- 

sylvania, January 7. 

"In order to control the power of the engine, I propose to attach a governor to it, which 
shall act upon a lever, which shall be connected to the negative plate or plates of the bat- 
teries, by which means the amount of electricity can be regulated." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention is the insulated disks, in combination with 
the platina points, to act in concert with the magnetic wheels, in manner and form, and 
for the purposes herein described." 

26. For an Improved Arrangement of Arches in Bridge Trusses,- Cunningham M. Pen- 

nington, Rome, Georgia, January 7; ante' dated December 9, 1850. 

"The nature of my invention, consists in a certain combination and arrangement of up- 
right and inverted arches, by which all thrust against the abutments or piers is prevented, 
and at the same time securing a permanent structure." 

Claim. — "Having thus fully described my invention, what I claim therein as new is the 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. Ill 

method herein described of combining and arranging the several arches of a bridge so as 
to make each arch, alternately, the upright and inverted arch, as it passes from one span 
of the bridge to the other, and vice versa, when one set of said arches have their remotest 
distance from each other, and their greatest sustaining points directly over and under the 
points, when the other set of arches are changing from upright or inverted arches, or vice 

27. For an Improvement in Coal Stoves; James Shields, City of New York, and Samuel 
Pierce, Troy, New York, January 7. 

"Our invention is of an improvement in the downward draft stove invented bv Dr. 
Eliphalet Nott, in which the charge of coal is contained in a fire chamber extending above 
the aperture for the draft, leading to the flues through which the products of combustion 
circulate, to heat a large amount of metal surface for the radiation of heat." 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the method substantially as herein de- 
scribed, of supplying currents of atmospheric air to the products of combustion, at or near 
the throat leading from the fire chamber to the flue, in combination with what is known 
as Nott's fire chamber, having the draft throat leading therefrom between the top and the 
grate, that the upper part of the fire-pot may constitute a feeder or chamber of preparation, 
substantially in the manner and for the purpose specified." 

28. For an Improved Parallel Vise,- Samuel R. Simpson, Springfield, Ohio, January 7. 

"The utility of this combination is to obviate the frequent adjustments of the vise-jaw 
to the ever-varying thickness of lumber and other materials which are to be worked in a 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the attaching the lower end of the moving 
jaw of the vise to a block that is attached to, and moves with, the end of the screw, in the 
manner and for the purposes herein described." 

29. For an Improvement in Ox Yokes; Andrew L. Simpson, Durham, New Hampshire, 
January 7. 

"The great object of my improvement, the device to secure which constitutes the dis- 
tinguishing feature of my invention, consists in relieving the weaker ox, where there is a 
difference in the strength of the two, by having two staples some six inches apart, in lieu 
of one staple, to one of which staples the draft chain is fastened, while to the other staple 
a branch chain, some sixteen inches long, is connected by a hook, its other end beino- con- 
nected to the main draft chain. The effect of this is, that when the stronger pulls more 
than the weaker one, he instantly straightens the main draft chain, and slackens the branch 
chain, so that the strength of the weaker ox then acts with a lever six inches longer than 
when both chains are tightly drawn. This is a great desideratum." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is arranging in the beam of the yoke two 
draft staples, some six inches apart, in lieu of one at the centre, and the combination or 
use therewith of a branch chain of proper length, connected to the main draft chain at a 
proper distance from the beam, and the adjustable hook for modifying the length of the 
branch chain, as herein above specified and for the purpose set forth." 

30. For an Improved Means for Revolving the Breeches of Repeating Fire Arms,- James 
Warner, Springfield, Massachusetts, January 7. 

"The nature of my invention consists in such construction of a revolving chambered 
pistol that the chambers will be caused to revohc by the action a lever, of which the ful- 
crum or axis of vibration is in line, or nearly so, with the axis of rotation of the chamber; 
whereby I am enabled to effect the revolution of the chambers with greater certaintv, and, 
by simplifying the construction, to diminish the cost of manufacture, as well as the liability 
to derangement in rapid action." 

Claim. — "What I claim as of my own invention, is the cranked shaft ec b, operated by 
the tumbler, bavin? its axis of vibration in the line, or nearly so, with the axis of rotation 
of the cylinder, substantially in the manner herein set forth." 

112 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

31. For an Improvement in the Manufacture of Caviar,- Robert G. Wcstacott, Worces- 
ter, assignor to Robert G. Westacott, Ephraim Lombard, and Nathaniel K. Lombard, 
Boston, Massachusetts, January 7. 

'■The experiments I have made have enabled me to produce an improved manufacture 
of the article in question, which not only enables me to transport it to warm latitudes, and 
there keep it for a great length of time in a perfect state of preservation, but at the same 
time to prevent its induration in a great degree, if not entirely, and impart to it a flavor 
that renders it extremely palatable to those who eat it." 

Claim. — "What I claim, therefore, as my invention, is the improvement in the process 
of salting the roe or ova, whereby extraneous matters are separated, the same consisting 
in suffering it to stand in pickle, or a strong saline solution, until it undergoes a process 
or change, by which the ova and such extraneous matters separate from one another, the 
former rising to the surface of the pickle, while the latter falls to the bottom of it. 

"And I also claim the combination of the male sturgeon oil, as above mentioned, with the 
salted ova, for the purpose of improving the manufacture thereof as specified." 


Description of a New Arrangement of Reflecting Telescope, by which much 
comfort and convenience is secured to the Observer. By James Nasmyth.* 

[Paper read at the. Meeting of the British Association, Edinburgh.] 

The optical department of this arrangement is seen in section in fig. 1, 
where it will be observed that by the union of the Newtonian and Cassegrain 
construction, in so far as respects the turning back of the cone of rays by 
the small convex mirror, C, and receiving them at D, by a small diagonal 
plane mirror, D, the rays which ultimately form the image of the object 
are sent out sideways through the trunnion, G, in which the eye-piece is 
placed, and through which, in fact, the observer views the object. 




Fig. 1. 

By having a corresponding trunnion at the opposite side, T, and em- 
ploying these trunnions as the supports of the telescope, and using them 
as the axis on which it is moved in altitude, it will be evident that, as the 
eye-piece, G, is thus in the centre of motion, whatever be the sweep of 
elevation in moving the telescope vertically from object to object, no 
change in the position of the eye of the observer will be required; his eye, 
while opposite to the trunnion, is common to all positions of the instrument 
in altitude; his eye is virtually in the centre of motion. 

But as the telescope has to be moved round so as to follow the motion 
of an object in azimuth, it is desirable that the observer should not have 
to change his position even in this respect. Therefore, in order that he 
may sit at his ease opposite to the eye-piece while the telescope is moved 
either in altitude or in azimuth, all that has to be done to attain this object 
* From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 

Description of a JYeio Arrangement of Reflecting Telescope. 113 

is to place the entire instrument on a turn-table, and have a comfortable 
seat for the observer also on the turn-table, and then, whatever be the 
elevation or direction in which the telescope is pointed, the observer need 
never stir from his comfortable seat; and as we all know with what ease 
ponderous machines, such as railway wagons or locomotive engines, can 
be swung round on properly constructed turn-tables, and also the ease 
with which a well-balanced mass can be swung when it centres, some idea 
may be formed of the perfect ease and facility with which such an instru- 
ment as this of Mr. Nasmyth's can be governed and directed by the ob- 
server, who has, by means of suitable hands brought close to his chair, the 
most perfect command of every requisite movement. 

Fig. 2. 

The instrument in question which is represented in fig. 2,weighs upwards 
of two tons, can be moved in every direction by the point of the finger, 
swung round in an instant, or elevated to any object on a slow motion 
given to it, so as to enable the observer to keep the object in the centre 
of the field for hours. Such is the perfect steadiness of the motion, that 
not the slightest tremor is perceptible, even when observing with a mag- 
nifying power of 450 times. Some objection may be urged against 
the optical arrangement by which Mr. Nasmyth has brought his telescope 
to yield this central vision, in so far that it is requisite to employ a third 


114 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

reflecting surface, namely, the small plane diagonal mirror (D, fig. 1,) by 
means of which we are enabled to view the object through the hollow 
trunnion G, fig. 1, or B, fig. 2; no doubt, some portion of light is sacrificed 
by the employment of this third reflector; but when we obtain in exchange 
so vast an amount of convenience and comfort as result from the adoption 
of this arrangement of Mr. Nasmyth, most observers will be happy to accept 
the exchange, and with the advantage of the ease, comfort, and tranquility 
resulting from the absence of all personal sources of interruption, Mr. 
Nasmyth presumes that by thus inducing more frequent and careful observB- 
tions, science will be advanced. 

Mr. Nasmyth stated, that the main object he had in view in construct- 
ing this large telescope, was not so much to pursue observations of objects 
of the fainter class, as nebulas, &c, but rather for following up series of 
observations in reference to the structure of the lunar surface, on which 
subject he has been occupied for several years; and such has been the 
increased comfort and facility which this truly manageable and powerful 
instrument has given him, that, judging from the'specimens of the "draw- 
ings from nature," of the remarkable features of the lunar surface, which 
he exhibited to the Section, the optical powers of his instrument are equal 
to its convenience and comfort to the observer. 

Fig. 2 is a perspective view of Mr. Nasmyth's "Comfortable Telescope;" 
C is a cast iron turn-table, which, on being moved round, carries with it 
the entire instrument, and the observer, who, seated in a comfortable chair, 
has complete control of the elevation and round-about motion; the former 
by means of a tangent screw and wheel, F, the latter by tangent screw 
and pinionshaft, E, which commands the roundabout or azimuth motion. 
An eye-piece is placed convenient to the eye of the observer at G. Some 
idea may be formed of the facility with which the movements can be con- 
trolled, when it is stated that within two minutes, Mr. Nasmyth has fre- 
quently directed this large instrument to nine different objects situated in 
various parts of the heavens. 

Qn the Condensation of Steam in the Engines of the South Staffordshire Iron 
District, and the Improvements to be effected in them. By Mr. William 

The object of the present paper, with the accompanying series of indi- 
cator diagrams, which have been taken from the several engines by the 
author of the paper, is to show the present working condition of forty- 
eight of the largest class of mill, forge, and blast engines in South 
Staffordshire, with some remarks as to the practicability of improving 

The general character of the indicator diagrams of the majority of these 
engines, shows a considerable pressure of steam, continued nearly uniform 
throughout the whole stroke of the piston, and averaging about 12 lbs. 
per square inch above the atmosphere in the forge and mill engines, and 
about 7 lbs. per square inch in the blast engines; with a very defective 
vacuum, commencing about the atmospheric line, and reaching only from 
* From the London Artizan, October, 1850. 

On the Condensation of Steam. 


7 lbs. to 11 lbs. per square inch below the atmosphere at the end of the 
stroke, the average vacuum being about 6J>- lbs. per square inch below 
the atmosphere throughout the stroke. Some of the indicator diagrams 
from blast engines show a considerable expansive action, but not a good 

Fig. lshowsthe indicator dia- 
gram from a mill engine of 42 
inch cylinder and seven feet 
stroke, making 17 strokes per 
minute, which was working 
very imperfectly in the con- 
densation of the steam, and has 
been improved to a remarkable 
extent, by an alteration made 
for the purpose of improving 
the vacuum, which has effected 
a very considerable saving in 
the consumption of fuel. This 
engine was working with 19^ 

Fig. 1. 

lbs. pressure of steam at the beginning of the stroke, continued to 17^ lbs. 
pressure at the middle, and reduced to 6 lbs. per inch at the end of the 
stroke, by wire-drawing the steam without any cut-off expansion valve; 
the average pressure being 16-37 lbs. per square inch throughout the stroke, 
the average vacuum was only 2-721bs. persquare inchbelow the atmosphere, 
beginning a little above the atmospheric line, and reaching only 5 lbs. below 
the atmosphere at the en d of the stroke. This performance being so bad it 
was considered necessary to examine the engine, and the cause was found 
to be from the valves, thoroughfares, and condenser being much too small 
for the proper proportion, the steam and eduction valves being only 7 
inches diameter, and the thoroughfares of the same size; these were there- 
fore removed and replaced by others, the steam valves being 10 inches 
diameter, and the eduction valves and thoroughfares 12 inches diameter, 
or three times the area of the original ones. The condenser was also nearly 
doubled in capacity by attaching a large vessel on the top of it, which 
made it rather larger than the regular proportion; the air pump was only 
24 inches diameter, with half the stroke of the steam piston, or about £th 
less contents than the regular proportion for the size of the cylinder; this 
was not altered, but there was an abundant supply of cold water for injec- 

The result of the above alteration is shown in fig. 2, the steam pressure 
being 8 lbs. at the beginning, and reduced to about the atmosphere at the 
end of the stroke, the average being 5*40 lbs. instead of 16-37 lbs. per 
square inch pressure throughout the stroke; the vacuum commenced at 
10.^ lbs. and ended at 11 lbs., the average being 10-15 lbs. instead of 2- 72 
lbs. per square inch below the atmosphere throughout the stroke. The 
improvement in the vacuum amounts therefore to a constant average 
pressure of 7-43 lbs. per square inch throughout the stroke; the total power 
of the engine, as shown by the first diagram, was 19-09 lbs. per inch on 
the piston throughout the stroke, being 190 horse-power; consequently 
this improvement of the vacuum amounted to 39 per cent, of the total 
power of the engine, or 74 horse power. 

116 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

The engine before the alteration had the steam valves, the eduction 
valves, and the thoroughfares only 7 inches diameter. By the alteration, 
the steam valves were increased to 10 inches diameter, and the eduction 
valves E and thoroughfares T to 12 inches diameter; the new valves being 
so much larger than the old ones, a different arrangement was required to 
make room for them, the spindle of the lower steam valve being carried 
up the side pipe, and the upper eduction valve placed over the other 
side pipe, so that three of the valve spindles are worked at the upper steam 
chest, and one only at the lower. 

The addition made to the condenser, was a circular vessel constructed 
of boiler plate, 3 feet 6 inches diameter, and 15 inches high, fixed on the 
top of the condenser. A further improvement was also made in the 
condenser, by cleaning out the deposit of lime, and adding an internal 
injection pipe and rose; there was no internal injection pipe previously, 
but simply a hole in the side of the condenser, where the injection cock 
was fixed on, and consequently the injection water was much less efficient 
in condensing the steam, being poured into the condenser in a single stream, 
instead of being scattered in a number of small jets from the rose end 
of the pipe. 

The majority of engines in this district are similar in this respect, and 
the reason that has been given, is, that the rose is apt to get the holes 
choked up by deposit from the water, which is very much impregnated 
with lime. This is a matter requiring particular attention in this district, 
and cases have come under the writer's observation, where condensers 
w r ere filled up by the deposit in the course of two or three years 1 time, to 
such an extent, that the capacity was reduced fully one-half, as well as the 
passage through the foot valve; it is a very hard calcareous deposit, which 
adheres firmly to the cast iron, and requires considerable labour to cut it 
out, involving a serious stoppage of the engines, and they were conse- 
quently worked as long as possible before taking off the condenser cover 
to cut out the deposit, which increased to 7 inches thickness, and as much 
as half a ton weight in one engine. 

Besides the very important saving effected by the greater power 
obtained from the steam, in consequence of the improvement of 39 per 
cent, in the vacuum, as described above, the engine has been found to 
do the work more regularly and satisfactorily since the alteration than 
before; it was liable to be pulled up by any extra strain of the rolls, &c, 
whenever the piston was getting in want of repacking, the leakage of steam 
injuring the vacuum on account of the very deficient condensing power; 
but that has not occurred since the alteration was made. 

The engine drives a merchant mill of 3 pair of rolls, a guide mill of 3 
pair, 2 pair of forge rolls, a forge hammer, 2 shears, and a pump for 
draining the foundations. It was not stopped longer than three days to 
make the whole of the alterations described above. 

Another similar engine of the same size as the preceding, (No. 17) was 
also examined, in consequence of the imperfection in its condensing, and 
the valves and thoroughfares were found to be 10 inches diameter, but 
the valves had not sufficient lift; the eduction pipe to the condenser was 
9 inches diameter, and the condenser was 2 feet 4 inches diameter, and 
4 feet 6 inches high; the eduction pipe was then removed and replaced 

On the Condensation of Steam. 117 

with one 12 inches diameter, also a large vessel was fixed on the top of 
the condenser, which increased its capacity about one-third. The lift ot 
the valves was then increased from 1^ inch to 2| inches, and the result 
of the alteration was an improvement in the vacuum of from T50 lbs. to 
7-97 lbs. per square inch below the atmosphere, or 6-47 lbs. per square 
inch increase of average pressure throughout the stroke. 

The saving of fuel from these alterations has not been well ascertained, 
as the engines in both cases are worked from a series of boilers which 
also supply steam to other engines, upon which the load is very unequal; 
but the saving is admitted to be very considerable, and in the case of No. 
17, the proprietors have been enabled to use an inferior description of 
slack, and also to throw off one boiler, with a fire grate about 7 feet square, 
and 45 square yards of heated surface, without any diminution in the power 

The aggregate power of the 45 mill, forge, and blast engines from which 
the indicator diagrams are taken, is nominally 3240 horse power, according 
to Boulton and Watt's proportions of the cylinders, but by the calculation 
of the indicator diagrams, the total is 7819 horse power; the average 
vacuum obtained in the present working of all the engines, is about 6 
lbs. per inch below the atmosphere throughout the stroke, omitting from 
the average four, which are exceptions to the general run of these engines; 
and the average vacuum obtained in the 6 expansive engines, of which 
indicator diagrams are also given, is 10^ lbs. per inch below the atmosphere 
throughout the stroke. The loss of power from the imperfect vacuum in 
the former engines may therefore be taken at the difference between these 
pressures, or 4^ lbs. per square inch pressure throughout the stroke, which 
amounts to 1930 indicated horse power upon those engines; or in other 
words, an additional power of 1930 horse power, or 25 per cent, increased 
power might be obtained from the same expenditure of steam, and conse- 
quently of fuel, if the vacuum were improved so as to be as good as the 
average of the 6 expansive engines, or 10^ lbs. per inch throughout the 
stroke. This vacuum has been obtained in the two engines, Nos. 12 and 
17, which have been altered as before described, although in these engines 
the alteration was carried out only to a limited extent, and at a com- 
paratively trifling expense; but if it were carried out efficiently by attach- 
ing expansive gear in addition to the alterations that have been made, a 
much better effect would be obtained by using the same volume of steam 

In many cases the expansive action is accomplished by the addition of 
a separate expansion valve in the steam pipe, which is worked by a cam, 
so as to cut oil' the steam at any portion of the stroke that may be desired, 
this valve opening and shutting twice for each double stroke of the engine; 
the steam and eduction valves are worked by a common eccentric motion, 
the top and bottom valves opening and shutting together. But this is 
an imperfect mode of obtaining expansion, because the steam filling the 
side pipe and the two steam chests expands after the cut off valve is 
shut, and this steam forms a considerable proportion to the contents of the 

The only efficient mode of applying expansive action, is by lifting each 
valve by a separate cam, so adjusted as to shut each steam valve at 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

Fig. 2. 

whatever point of the stroke maybe desired, whilst the eduction valve 
is held open till the termination of the stroke; by which means the full 
effect of the expansive action is obtained. The difference in effect 
between these two modes of cutting off the steam, is shown by the 
diagrams Nos. 3 and 4, which are taken from a pair of blast engines work- 
ing coupled together, and with no difference between them, except that 
in No. 4 the steam is cut off by a separate expansion valve in the steam 
pipe, and in No. 3 the valves are lifted by separate cams. 

But independent of the loss sustained by not working expansively, the 

loss of power in the engines 
~-\ o described being 1930 horse 

power as shown before, the 
annual loss in money by extra 
consumption of fuel in these 
engines, calculating 20 lbs. of 
slack per hour, for one horse 
power, at a cost of 3s. per ton, 
will amount to ,£18,610, or 
£2. 7s. 7d. per horse power 
per annum. 

The total power of the steam 
engines employed inthemanu- 
facture of iron in this district, 
may be computed to be fully ten times the nominal power above named; 
and the total annual loss to the proprietor from the causes described in 
the present paper, may be therefore taken in round numbers at 180,000/, 
per annum, as the more expansive engines described above may be con- 
sidered a fair average of the engines in the district. 

It has been generally considered hitherto, that the improvement of 
expansive action of steam was not applicable advantageously to the engines 
of this district, because of the small cost of the fuel employed; but this will 
be seen to be an erroneous conclusion from the actual results of the altera- 
tions described above, where the improvement was only effected in the 
vacuum, and the expansive principle was not carried out, which would 
have effected a still greater saving. The total quantity of fuel consumed 
at present is so large, that although the price per ton is insignificant, the 
total amount of saving effected by the per centage on the whole is very 

In addition to the saving in cost of fuel consumed, a very important 
saving would also be effected in the tear and wear of the boilers, which 
is fully in proportion to the extra fuel burnt under them, and the repairing 
of which is invariably attended with serious inconvenience and expense. 
The description of boilers in general use in the district, and the further 
saving to be effected by improvements in their construction and mode of 
setting, is also an important practical subject for consideration, and it is 
intended to form the subject of another paper, to be laid before the 
Institution at a future meeting. 

The Chairman said he believed the writer was quite within bounds, 
when he estimated the saving in fuel which might be effected in that district 
alone at 180,000/. per annum; nor was the subject of importance in that 

On the Condensation of Steam. 119 

light merely, because it -was found to prevail as a general rule, that the 
amount of destruction in machinery and boilers was nearly in proportion 
to the quantity of fuel consumed. He had remarked at a former meeting 
on the practical importance of obtaining comparative accounts as complete 
as possible of the consumption of fuel, and economy of working of the 
steam engines in the different districts of the country, and he thought that 
all information of that kind was of great practical value. 

Mr. Bowman inquired whether, in most of the engines mentioned, the 
proportions of Boulton and Watt were observed in the condenser? 

Mr. W. Smith replied, that speaking generally, he believed that was the 
case, but the bad working of the engines was accounted for by the ex- 
traordinary pressure of the steam used. The error was, that engines in- 
tended and proportioned for 3 lbs. steam were worked up to 12 or 16 lbs. 
per inch throughout the stroke, and consequently, they were very imperfect 
in their condensing; as there was so much larger quantity of steam to be 
condensed at each stroke, when the cylinder full of high pressure steam 
expanded down to the same pressure as the low pressure steam. 

Mr. Bowman observed, that this would seem to imply that the size of 
the condenser should be regulated by the pressure of the steam in the 

Mr. Cowper said, the pressure of the steam was certainly a necessary 
element to be taken into consideration, as well as the size, of the cylinder, 
in determining the size of the condenser. There was not only a greater 
quantity of steam to condense when a higher pressure was employed, but 
also a greater quantity of air to pump out at each stroke of the air pump. 
He mentioned a case which came within his own observation in that 
district, where 18 lbs. steam was employed; there was no barometer gauge, 
but the parties were satisfied that they had a good vacuum; however, the 
fact was, that the injection water was forced into the condenser by means 
of a cistern at the top of the engine house, 22 feet in height. 

Mr. Slate remarked, that he fully concurred in the results obtained by 
Mr. Smith, but feared they were so startling that there would be a 
disinclination to give them credence in the district. It was highly im- 
portant then that the truth of the deductions should be practically ad- 

Mr. T. Thorneycroft, as an iron master of the district referred to, felt 
extremely obliged to the author of the paper for pointing out the means 
whereby any saving could be effected, more especially at a time when, 
owing to the state of the trade, economy in the manufacture was so 

Mr. W. Smith said, it had often occurred to him, that a steam engine 
was like no other machine. A time-piece, if out of order, was sent back 
to the maker to be repaired, and in the case of machines of other descriptions, 
if they did not do their work well they were immediately stopped, because 
they wasted and injured the material upon which they were employed. 
But when the old steam engine, after 20 or 30 years of hard labour, showed 
some symptoms of disorder, it could not be stopped; so with an extra 
application of the coal shovel, and some hammering at the cotters, &c, 
it was set to work again, and with its powerful steam arm it wound round 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

all the complicated machinery. This, however, was done at an enormous 
expense to the proprietor of the engine, and it would be much better if 
he were to renovate its constitution. He trusted that the exertions of the 
members of the Institution would have some influence in showing to 
persons of the description referred to, the necessity of carrying out these 
things on more efficient principles than they had hitherto been conducted. 
Mr. Bowman thought it a matter of great importance that the injection 
water should spread itself out amongst the whole quantity of steam imme- 
diately on its passage into the condenser, and the alteration made by Mr. 
Smith in the mode of injection was very advantageous. 

Fig. 4. 

Mr. Cowper observed, that they ought all to add their testimony to the 
value of the indicator figures produced by Mr. Smith, because they showed 
the character of the engines much better than any judgment which could 
be formed with reference to them, inasmuch as it was the character of 
each engine written by itself, and could not be erroneous. He had not 
the slightest doubt, that a loss of 180,000/. at least, as stated by Mr. Smith, 
was sustained in that district, because the mode of condensing ordinarily 
adopted was exceedingly defective. It had occurred to him many years 
ago, that a valve might be put at the side of the condenser, and connect- 
ed with an injection pump, so that a gush of cold water might be injected 
at every stroke, at the very moment of the entrance of the steam into the 
condenser, and shut off again immediately, by which means the greatest 
possible use might be made of the injection water, and the condensation 
of the steam effected with a smaller quantity of injection water. 

He then explained the drawing of an improved injection valve which 

On the Condensation of Steam. 


he had constructed, and found to work very successfully: the object was 
to maintain the full pressure of the water at the point of entrance into the 
condenser, and to obtain a more efficient distribution of the jet of water 
without danger of its getting choked. In fig. 4, a is the condenser, b the 
eduction pipe, c the air pump, d the cold water cistern in which they are 
immersed; e is the injection valve, a conical valve rising a little above 
the bottom of the condenser, with a perforated cap below in the cold 
water cistern; this valve is lifted by the screwed rody, and the admission 
of the injection water can be regulated with the greatest accuracy by the 
screw. The water enters the condenser in a fine sheet all round the 
valve, which strikes the sides of the condenser and fills the whole space 
with a fine spray; he had ascertained this by trying the valve in a box 
similar to the condenser, but partially open, with a column of water of 
the same pressure as the injection, and he found the distribution of the 
water was so perfect as to fill the box with a complete spray or fog. There 
was also a different construction in the air pump, which he considered 
advantageous; the bottom dropped into a well g g, in the bottom of the 
condenser, and the water rose up the space gg. when the air-pump bucket 
dipped into it, forming a water-valve instead of the ordinary foot-valve, 
and giving pressure enough to ensure the bucket-valve opening if there 
was any obstruction. 

Fig. 5, shows the indi- 
cator figure, taken from the 
engine when in full work, at 
24 revolutions per minute, 
driving shafiing and two fans, 
and amounting to 72f indi- 
cated horse power. Fig. 6, 
is the indicator figure of the 
same engine when part of 
the work was thrown off, 
amounting to 38^ horse 
power; and fig. 7, is the 
indicator figure for the en- 
gine and four lines of shaft- 
ing alone, without any work, 

amounting to 14 horse power, at the same speed of 24 revolutions per 
minute. The engine is high pressure, expansive and condensing, and is 
one of a pair working coupled together: there was originally in their place, 
a pair of high pressure engines, non-expansive and non-condensing, and 
the comparative economy of power effected by the present engines is so 
great, that although the same boilers only are used, there is "2\ to 2 h times 
the power obtained. 

The indicator figures exhibited by Mr. Cowper to the meeting, were 
drawn to the scale of 20 inches length of stroke, and one | inch for each 
lb. of pressure; and he begged to suggest that scale as a convenient one 
to be adhered to, for indicator figures intended to be exhibited to the 

Mr. Slate thought the plan of injection proposed by Mr. Cowper was 
a very eligible one. With reference to the alternate injection of the water, 

Vol. XXI. — Tuikd Series. — No. 2. — Fehkuauy, 1851. 11 

122 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

he had experienced the difficulty in marine engines, of too much water 
being admitted by the injection cock, whenever the engines were working 
slowly, causing the injection water to choke up the condenser and even 
get up into the cylinder, and he had adopted a slide valve in the injection 
pipe, admitting only water enough at each stroke of the engine for the 
condensation of the steam; the jet of water was thrown against a perforated 
distributing plate. 

The Chairman remarked that there would be a tendency in the rose of 
the injection pipe, as adopted by Mr. Smith, to become choked up. 

Mr. Cowper observed that, in the plan he had described, that difficulty 
was quite obviated, as in the case of the circular valve becoming choked, 
they had only to lift it up an inch or two by the screw handle, and then 
screw it down again, and the rush of water would effectually wash out any 

The Chairman considered that a great advantage, as it would prevent 
any stoppage of the engine. He thought the members of the Institution 
were much indebted to Mr. Smith for his researches, but their obligations 
were small compared with. those of the iron manufacturers of the district, 
with whom he had been more immediately brought in contact, as the saving 
proved to have been effected by the improvement of the engines, formed 
so serious a proportion to the whole expense of working them. It was 
important that this subject should occupy the attention of the iron masters, 
because their material must bear a proportion in its price to the manage- 
ment bestowed in its manufacture. He hoped Mr. Smith would not lose 
sight of the subject, but keep it prominently before, not only the iron manu- 
facturers of South Staffordshire, but the owners of steam engines through- 
out the country; and he thought this Institution was an excellent vehicle for 
the purpose, because it was only by such an Institution that information 
could be collected in a practical form, and the results be duly investigated 
and considered. In conclusion, he proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. 
Smith, which was passed. 

Glass Painting* 

From an able article in the Journal of Design on painting upon glass, 
we extract the following: — 

We have fortunately some directions given us in a manuscript of the 
end of the 14th century, which in part bears traces of Byzantine science; it 
gives the process of the manufacture of various colored silicates and fluxes 
for the purpose of ornamenting glass. This MS. was copied in the 16th 
century at Bristol, and is now in the British Museum. (Sloane MSS. in 
British Museum, No. 3661.) 

Colors for Tinting Glass. 

Blue or blavus color — cobalt, or ultamarine, with purified crystal glass. 
Emerald color — from oxide of copper and yellow oxide of iron. 
Ruby color — from tartar, copper, and iron, or carbonate of potash and 
yellow oxide of iron. 

• From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 

Ascertaining the Value of Indigo. — Detonating Sugar. 123 

Carbuncle — gold calcined, 1; carb. of potash, 2. 
Sapphire — blue bi-carbonate of copper, or ultamarine, 1; potash, 2. 
Jacinth — protoxide of gold, \ part; ground iron, \ part; potash, 1. 
Emerald — red oxide of copper, a little; potash, 2. 
Topaz — protoxide of lead; protoxide of gold, a little; potash, 2. 
Garnet — protoxide of gold; haematite, a little; potash, 2. 
Chrysolite — oxide of zinc, 1; potash, 2. 

Turquoise — protoxide of gold, \; blue bi-carb. of copper (lapis arrne- 
nus); potash, 2. 

Cornelian — oxide of tin, \\ potash, 2; golden marcasite, 1; oak ashes, 

■k P art - 

Sapphire — 1 lb. finely ground crystal; h lb. calcined stag bones; i-lb. 
carb. of potash; melt it, and afterwards place ultamarine blue. (This 
glass would be opaque.) 

Flux — nitrate or bi-tartrate of potash and borax, equal quantities, with 
ceruse; mix with oil of eggs into a paste. 

Or crystal calcined, 1; carb. of potash, 2. 

Or crystal and oil of tartar fused together, and add nitre. 

Or glass well burnt, powdered, and washed, and melted with an equal 
quantity of borax. 

Method of Ascertaining the Value of Indigo.* 

Dr. Bolley, after showing the inaccuracy of the methods of Chevreul, 
Schlumberger, &c, recommends the following process: — 1 gramme of in- 
digo, (15*4 grains) is rubbed to a fine powder in a porcelain mortar; about 
10 grammes of fuming sulphuric acid are added, and it is then kept co- 
vered for six or eight hours, being occasionally stirred. The whole is 
then put into an evaporating dish, containing 2 lbs. of water; 50 grms. of 
concentrated hydrochloric acid are added, and the mixture is boiled. 
The water is replaced as it evaporates. Meanwhile, a \ grm. of warm 
dry chlorate of potassa in fine powder is dissolved in 100 grms. of water, 
in a graduated tube, holding 100 cubic centimetres of water. This is 
then added to the indigo solution, at first pretty freely, but afterwards 
more gradually, allowing the mixture to boil after each addition. The 
liquid changes from blue to green, greenish-brown, and at last into a red- 
brown. These changes may be observed by marking a piece of white 
filter from time to time with a rod dipped in the solution. 

On Detonating Sugar.] 

In a meeting of the Royal Academy of Turin, for 31st January, 1849, 
Professor Ascanio Sobrero announced his discovery of a detonating sugar, 
obtained from that material, by means similar to the mode of preparing 
gun cotton. 

Take pounded loaf sugar and pour on it a mixture of two volumes ot 

* From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

t From the Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal, for January, 1851. 

124 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

sulphuric acid, (at Barune 66,) and one volume of nitric acid (at 43). 
Immediately the sugar is converted into a tenacious viscid substance, 
which is only partially dissoluble in the acids employed. On adding a 
large quantity of water, (about twenty times that of the acids employed,) 
the sugar is converted into a material with the following properties. It 
is very white, diffusible in the acid mixture, and absolutely insoluble in 
water, but very soluble in alcohol and sulphuric ether. When subject to 
a moderate heat, it melts, and is decomposed without detonation: but if 
suddenly heated to redness, it explodes like gunpowder, producing gase- 
ous emanations, in which it is not difficult to recognize the nitrous vapor 
and that of cyanogen. By the blow of a hammer it also explodes, but 

The composition of this fulminating sugar it will not be difficult to de- 
termine — more easily than that of gun cotton — from its more slow decom- 
position under a graduated heat, when it may be exposed to the action 
of oxide of copper. Professor Sobrero, however, had not completed his 
analysis when his paper was read. Its composition may lead to the better 
understanding of other fulminating compounds, and we may be able to 
obtain fulminating substances by similar means from starch, flour, &c. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Fresh Water Condensers for Marine Steamers. 

The condenser of Mr. J. P. Pirsson, which was noticed in the Journal 
some time since as being in use on board the steamer "Osprey," running 
between this port and Charleston, has been examined within the last few 
days, (while the ship was being refitted for the coming season,) and found 
to be as perfect as when first put in use — the tubes, both internally and 
externally, were found to be perfectly clean, and the boilers free from 
scale. B. 

English Patent Law.* 

The following order relating to patents has been made by the Attorney 
General : — "The Attorney General, with the assent and concurrence of 
the Solicitor General, hereby gives notice, that every person applying for 
a patent after the 2d day of November inst., will be required to deposit 
in the office of the Attorney or Solicitor General an outline description in 
writing or drawing, to be approved by the Attorney General or the Solici- 
tor General, before any report will be made on such patent. (Signed) 
John Romilly, Lincoln's Inn, Nov. 2, 1850. 

Influence of Light on the Chemical Action of Oxygcn.\ 

At the recent meeting of the Swiss Association for the Advancement 
of Science, Professor Sihonbein read a paper on the Influence of Light 
upon the Affinities of Oxygen. He finds that oxygen, either pure or as 

* From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 
| From the London Artisan, for December, 1850. 

Albuminizing of Photogenic Glasses. 125 

found in the air, combines with sulphuret of lead under the influence of 
the solar rays, converting it into the white sulphate. In the dark, all 
other circumstances remaining the same, there was no perceptible action. 
In a strong summer sunshine the change took place in 15 minutes. Hence 
paper coated with the sulphuret of lead may be used for photographic 
purposes. It is not, however, sensitive enough for the camera. The 
sulphurets of arsenic and antimony are less easily affected. He shows 
likewise that the affinity of oxygen for some other substances is much in- 
creased by solar action, independent of heat. Thus he has, by the same 
means, transformed common oxide of lead into a compound of the pro- 
toxide and peroxide. To this existing power he refers various instances of 
slow oxidation in the open air, especially common bleaching. He further 
supposes that the electricity of the clouds has a voltaic origin, arising from 
the electromotive action of oxygen, under the influence of light, upon 
the water contained in the atmosphere. 

Albuminizing of Photogenic Glasses* 

We have received from Dr. Maunoir a translation, made at the request 
of M. Scarpellini — the President of a Society having its meetings on the 
Capitol, called Romana Corrispondenza Scientifica, — of a paper pub- 
lished in the Society's Journal, by M. Luigi Ceselli, on a new process for 
"albuminizing photogenic glasses." It appears to point out a method 
by which extreme uniformity in the thickness of the film may be obtain- 
ed: — and we print it from Dr. Maunoir's manuscript, with a few verbal 
alterations, where there appears to be a want of clearness, arising from 
the difficulty which a foreigner writing in English must necessarily ex- 
perience when not thoroughly familiarized^ with the idiom of the lan- 

It cannot be denied that photography has gained much by the substi- 
tution of glass for photogenic paper; as thus has been obtained a high 
degree of transparency of the plates for the process, a modification of 
that applied by Daguerre to the grand discovery of the celebrated Nea- 
politan, Gio. Batt. Porta, which discovery remained forgotten for nearly 
two centuries. Many difficulties, however, still existed; for, with the use 
of glass, a layer of albumen was necessary to the production of those 
wonderful results obtained by the rays of light. Again, to cover the 
glass with a layer of albumen of equal thickness, so that the light may- 
produce everywhere the same effect, to prevent any inequalities forming 
on the surface during the. drying process, to produce the layer at one 
stroke, — such were the difficulties which, notwithstanding repeated ex- 
periments, yet remained to be overcome, and had retarded the progress 
of this wonderful new method, — but which, it seemed to'M. L. Ceselli, 
did not deserve to be abandoned, as it had, to be replaced by the im- 
provements obtained with photogenic paper. 

* From the London Atkenaum, November, 1850.. 


126 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

After having studied the various processes in use, M. L. Ceselli in- 
vented a small simple machine, which he has found to obviate every 

It consists of a small rectangular box, supported by three regulating 
screws. To its base is joined a movable plate of metal, which, being 
heated by means of a lamp of alcohol, communicates to all the parts of 
the box an equal degree of heat. The plate is removed when the water 
bath is to be used instead of the lamp. The apparatus is protected by a 
glass covering, to guard against heterogeneous bodies falling on the 
albumen. This cover is also movable; and the box being traversed by 
an internal channel, in this, when convenient, a thermometer may be 
introduced. A sliding frame receives the glass which is to receive the 
preparation; this, again, being placed between two other plates of glass. 
The glasses are secured and their edges brought to correspond by means 
of a tightening screw, — so that the albumen, when either spreading or 
shrinking, may always cover the whole surface of the intermedial plate 
of glass. The frame is furnished on two parallel sides with a small 
groove to receive the albumen, — which a small round edged knife, 
elevated to the proper point by means of two spiral pivots cased in the 
sides of the box, and kept down in a parallel direction to the glass by 
means of a screw, serves to remove, producing by this means the exact 
thickness of layer which is required. The frame is furnished along one 
of its sides with an indented ridge, to which a wheel provided with an 
external handle corresponds, so that the frame can be made to move with 
such velocity as the operation may require. 

Common Meridian for all Nations.* 

We find it stated in the French journals, that in consequence of the 
confusion existing between the maritime calculations of different powers, 
and the unfortunate occurrences to which it sometimes leads, the naval 
powers of the north — Russia, Sweden, Denmark, and Holland — have 
entered into an agreement to open conferences on the old question of a 
common meridian for all nations. France, Spain, and Portugal, it is 
said, have given in their adhesion to the scheme; and a hope is held out 
that England will come into the arrangement. There never has been, 
and there never can be, a doubt as to the utility to science of common 
points of reference and uniformity of regulation; and no local jealousy 
should be allowed to stand in the way of them. The most advanced 
opinion on the Continent seems to be in favor of the selection of an 
entirely neutral point of intersection, — say Cape Horn, — which would 
have the immense advantage of being agreeable to the Americans. 
If the Admiralty are disposed to go with this movement, there seems 
a probability of establishing once and for ever this great maritime de- 

We are glad to seethe English journals advocating this change, which, 
unless we are mistaken, our own government endeavored some years ago 
* From the London Athonium, November, 1850. 

On the Boiler Explosion at Halifax. 127 

to effect, but unsuccessfully. We think, however, that the editor of the 
Athenceum is supposing that Americans will be in favor of Cape Horn. 
We do not believe that we have sufficient vanity of hemisphere to lead to 
that result, especially as it would be a very awkward meridian for our 
trade. We think, in all respects, the best meridian would be that of the 
Cape of Good Hope, which has, among its other recommendations, that 
of being the locality of a renowned observatory, established, by England. 
Could not longitude be also hereafter reckoned to 360°? F. 

The Boiler Explosion at Halifax* 

The coroner's inquest upon the bodies of the ten persons killed by the 
boiler explosion at Messrs. Firth's woollen manufactory, Lilly-lane Mill, 
Halifax, which was recorded in The Times at the period of the calamity, 
was brought to a close on Friday evening last. A great mass of evi- 
dence was adduced, the general tenor of which was, that Mr. Samuel 
Firth, if not other of the partners, was aware that the exploded boiler 
was unsafe for use, and yet that it was kept working at intervals up to 
the time of the explosion. Once or twice previous to the explosion the 
steam was turned off, and the machinery stopped, while Firth and the 
engine-tenter tinkered at the boiler, which was constantly leaking; and 
on the day before the boiler burst, Firth ordered the young people out of 
the engine house, (where they had been accustomed to warm themselves,) 
telling them that "they were to get away as fast as they could, lest the 
boiler should burst." The young people naturally became alarmed, and 
one of them, Lavinia Carter, attempted to leave the mill, but was order- 
ed back by Samuel Firth, and shortly after her resuming work the ex- 
plosion took place. This, however, was not the most serious part of the 
evidence against Samuel Firth. Mr. Thomas Wood, cotton spinner, of 
Sowerby-bridge, stated, that two days before the explosion, he met 
Samuel Firth in Bradford Cloth-hall, when Samuel said, referring to the 
explosion at Messrs. Waud's Bradford mill, "We have had a good deal 
of bother about engineering this week. Our old engine is poorly, and I 
have had to look after the man a good deal, lest he should get his pressure 
too strong on the boiler. I am afraid there will be a blow up at our 
place, but we must run on till Christmas." The most important evidence 
given during the inquiry, was that of Mr. William Fairbairn, the eminent 
civil engineer and machinist, of Manchester, who had been sent for by 
the mayor and magistrates of Halifax to view Messrs. Firth's boilers, 
and report thereon. His evidence is important, not only as showing how 
the accident occurred, but as suggesting a precaution against these dread- 
ful catastrophes in future. Mr. Fairbairn put in a written report of con- 
siderable length, of which the following are the chief points : 

"The comparative saving w r hich is effected by the judicious applica- 
tion of high pressure steam in its expansive action upon steam engines, 
and when due care is taken that the vessels within which it is confined 
are calculated to resist with perfect security the forces by which they may 
* From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

128 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

be assailed, does not admit of doubt. I think it is equally for the gene- 
ral benefit of the country and the extension of our manufactures, that 
every facility should be given for its introduction, and I take this oppor- 
tunity publicly to state, that, in my opinion, it may be accomplished with 
perfect safety, and with grea;ly increased economy in the consumption 
and employment of the most valuable mineral production this country 
possesses. The danger does not consist in the intensity of pressure to 
which the steam may be raised, but entirely upon the character and con- 
struction of the vessel which contains the dangerous element. When 
contained within the narrow limits of a well constructed locomotive boiler, 
it is perfectly harmless; but if it be attempted to enclose a volume of 
similar density in an ordinary boiler of extended capacity, you incur the 
almost certain result of a catastrophe, such as we have so recently been 
called upon to deplore. Such, it appears to me, was the position in 
which the public were placed with respect to the boilers of the Lilly-lane 
Mill. They were worked (especially two of them) in a very unsafe con- 
dition; and I have no hesitation in stating, that they were unequal to the 
pressure to which they were exposed. Insecure to begin with, they were 
rendered immeasurably more so from the absence of proper safety valves 
— an outlet of only three inches diameter, which was common to all the 
three, being scarcely worthy of the name. From every inquiry, there is 
no evidence to show at whatpressure the valve was weighed, or whether 
or not it was ever in a working condition. I am not aware what may be 
the practice in this or other parts of Yorkshire; but I cannot sufficiently 
condemn a system of construction which limits the means of escape, and 
exposes both life and property to the most eminent peril. The boilers at 
Lilly-lane Mill were of such magnitude, and the plates of which they 
were composed so extremely thin, that I should have considered them 
at any time very precarious. Assuming all the parts to be perfect, which 
is, however, doubtful, we shall find that 12 lb. on the square inch was; 
although sufficient to distort the form, totally inadequate to effect the 
rupture of the boiler'. Taking the tensile strength of the material, and 
the joints of which the boiler was composed, it was equal, under a more 
judicious distribution, to ten times that pressure; but, unfortunately, the 
extreme thinness of the plates, and the want of sufficient stays, caused 
the flat ends to bulge outwards, which, under the influence of a variable 
force,, created a slow but certain strain upon the angle iron, which ulti- 
mately destroyed its texture, and rupture ensued. The boilers were 
originally supplied with water by self-acting jackheads or columns of 
water, at" the usual height of 12 or 14 feet. These, it appears, were taken 
down some years since, when the new end of the mill was built over the 
boilers, and valves or cocks worked by hand substituted for them. Now, 
the hand-feed, direct from the pump, in well constructed cylindrical 
boilers, with double safety valves, may be perfectly safe; but in this case, 
when the steam escape was so insufficient, they were very injudicious, 
and in fact, the removal of the jackheads did away with almost the only 
security that the boilers originally possessed. Before the engine is again 
started, I would earnestly recommend that the boiler next the engine- 
house be discontinued and destroyed, and that the other boiler with 
hemispherical ends be removed from under the mill, if it is possible to do 

On the Manufacture of Steel Pens. 129 

so. Having made these statements, it now becomes my duty to state, 
forthe information of the authorities of Halifax and the public generally, 
what I consider the most feasible means tor averting, or at least diminish- 
ing, the number of these frigh fill accidents arising from boiler explo- 
sions. It appears to me, that a legislaiive interference in the construc- 
tion of boilers, or machinery of any kind, is exceedingly objectionable, 
and should not be resorted to but in cases of urgent necessity; yet I do 
not clearly perceive how local regulations, however good and judicious 
in themselves, would answer the purpose, unless under the control and 
sanction of the law. I apprehend the assistance of Parliament would be 
required to carry out the principles I would suggest, as follows: — 1st. 
That after a certain date boilers should not be allowed to be placed under 
buildings where people are employed, and that those now in that position 
be as speedily removed as possible. 2d. That boilers of a wagon shape 
should not be worked at a pressure exceeding 10 lb. on the square inch. 
3d. That after a certain date every new boiler should be proved up to 
not more than one-third its bursting pressure, and to three times its in- 
tended working pressure. Lastly, That every boiler should be fitted 
with two safety valves, one to be self-acting, and beyond the reach of the 
engine tenter, or any other person but one to whom the duty of exami- 
nation should be expressly intructed." 

After the evidence had been closed, the coroner, Mr. G. Dyson, having 
summed up, the jury retired, and after being in consultation for upwards 
of three hours, returned with a verdict of "Manslaughter against Samuel 
Firth, one of the proprietors of the mill, and Joseph Helliwell, the engine- 
tenter," and the coroner proceeded to make out their committal to York 
Castle for trial at the assizes. 

Steel Pens* 

The following interesting particulars are condensed from the Morning 
Chronicle: — Steel pens are almost entirely manufactured by women and 
young girls; and it is probable that out of the 2000 persons or upwards 
now engaged in the business, not above 100 or 150 are of the male sex. 
The manufacture of pen-holders, and that of pen-boxes, give employment 
to an additional number of women and children, variously estimated at 
from 200 to 400 persons. About the year 1820 or 1821 the first gross of 
"three-slit" steel pens was sold, wholesale, at the rate of 7/. 4s. the gross. 
In 1830 they had fallen to 8s., and in 1832 to 6s. the gross. A better 
article is now sold at 6d. per gross. One factory alone, in Birmingham, 
produces them at the rate of no less than 40,000 gross, or 6,760,000 in a 
week — very nearly a million, or 960,000 per working day, or 289,528,000 
per annum. At the very lowest calculation, Birmingham produces 1000 
millions per annum. The cheapes' pens are sold as low as2(/. per gross, 
wholesale; and the price rises, with the elasticity and finish of the pen, 
up to 3s. 6d. and 5s. per gross. Birmingham produces them all, and one 
establishment has the distinctive marks of 500 different dealers in all parts 
of the country, as well as on the continents of Europe and America, for 
whom he manufactures according to order. 

* From the London Builder, January, 1851. 

130 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

The sheets of steel, received from Sheffield, are reduced to the requisite 
tenuity by successive transits through the rolling-mill operations, tended 
by men and boys. When reduced to the thinness of a steel pen, length 
about 2 feet, breadth 2^ to 3 inches, the sheets are ready for punching 
out the blanks. This process is performed with great rapidity — one girl, 
of average industry and dexterity, being able to punch out about 100 
gross a day. The next operation is to place the blank in a concave die, 
on which a slight touch from a convex punch produces the requisite shape: 
that of the semi-tube. The slits and apertures to increase the elasticity, 
and the maker's or vendor's name or mark, are produced by a similar 
tool. Previously, however, the pen undergoes a variety of other processes. 
When complete all but the slit, it is soft and pliable, and may be bent or 
twisted in the hand like a piece of thin lead. Being collected in "grosses" 
or "great grosses," the pens are thrown into little iron square boxes by 
men, and placed in a furnace, where they remain till box and pens are 
of a white heat. They are then taken out, and thrown hissing hot into 
pails or tanks of oil, w T hen they may be broken like so many wafers: after 
draining, they are made to revolve rapidly in a perforated cylinder. 

Hydraulic Mortar, as made and used at the Docks, Liverpool, 1850.* 

Few engineers or architects who have visited Liverpool will have ne- 
glected to examine the docks, constructed under the direction of Mr. 
Hartley, and if they have noticed the character of the recent work, they 
will have observed that the river walls, entrances, and dock walls are 
principally of rubble masonry. The strength of this work in a great mea- 
sure depends upon the good quality of the mortar used. From inquiries, 
we obtained the following particulars as to the mortar, which may be 
useful to some of our readers. The dock works at Birkenhead are con- 
structed with similar mortar. In fact, it has been made principally by 
men from the Liverpool works. The stone is obtained from Halkin 
mountain, near to Holywell, Flintshire, North Wales; it is shipped in the 
river Dee. Price of stone delivered upon the quay at Liverpool, per ton, 
7s. 3d. When it is requisite to burn the stone quickly, coke is used, at 
per ton 16s. When not required quickly, coal is used, at per ton 8s. 6d. 
The stone can be burned quickly for as little money with coke as it can 
be burned slowly with coals. But it is very expensive to burn quickly 
with coals or slowly with coke. The proportion of coke is generally one 
bushel to six bushels of stone. 

Tons. Cwt. 
4 10 

1 10 

Cost of E 

of limestone, 
labor on do., 
of coke, 

me, 3 tons, at 18s. 

'liming the Limestone. 
Per Ton. 

7s. 3d. 

Is. 6d. 

7~>rl. per ton, 

£ 1 







£ 2 



Produce: Li 

£ 2 



* From the London Builder, January, 1851. 

On the Voltaic Light. 131 

Mortar from the mill costs, per cubic yard, from 9s. 6d. to 10s. 6d. 

N. B. Various quantities of sand are used, from two to five, to one of 
lime by measure. Smith's ashes, or furnace ashes, are used to mix with 
the lime, and with much advantage. 

The sand is obtained out of the river Mersey, generally from the great 
banks above the town. 

The lime-kilns stand close to the mortar shed; the lime is drawn fresh 
from the kiln mouth, is slaked, and thrown at once into the mortar pans, 
which are driven by steam power. The mortar is used fresh, generally 
on the day it is made. It sets rapidly, and in a few months the rubble 
becomes one solid mass. Grout is used plentifully, made from the same 

The Voltaic Light* 

There was a private exhibition of this light at the Polytechnic Institution 
on Saturday, which, we believe, was the first of a series of experiments, 
to precede its permanent application in the chemical lecture room of that 
establishment, instead of the gas, which has hitherto been used. The 
effect of the light was brilliant in the extreme, and the simplicity of the 
apparatus is favorably contrasted with other machines of this kind which 
we have examined. 

It appears from the statement which was handed round that, under all 
other patents in this country, machinery in the nature of clock-work, or 
acting by some motive power, foreign to the voltaic current, has been em- 
ployed to regulate the proximity of the electrodes — the term by which the 
carbon points are ordinarily designated. We assume that every one who 
will take an interest in this topic understands that the electric, or, more 
properly speaking, the voltaic light, is produced by the process of bringing 
two pieces of carbon, in the shape of pencils, forming part of the galvanic 
circuit, into contact, and separating them, so as to cause the manifestation 
of the electric incandescence, or light; and that it is necessary to main- 
tain a regular proximity of the points, for if again brought into contact, 
or separated too far, the light will cease. 

The impurities of the carbon, the impossibility of making two of the 
carbon pencil points, or electrodes, of the same size, or of the same density, 
the variation in the supply of the voltaic current, and other causes, must 
render the arrangement of the distance of the points a matter of uncertain 
and fluctuating regulation; for which reason, it is evident that machinery 
cannot of itself prevail for the required purpose. Mr. Stait has endea- 
vored to supply the necessary means of regulating the distance by a kind 
of electric governor, with a reciprocating motion of an induced magnet in 
an electric coil within the circuit, which communicates with the motive 
power, or clock-work, and effects to control it. 

Mr. Allman goes a step further, and makes the voltaic current itself 
the regulator by a direct action upon magnets in contact with the carbon 
electrodes. The merest tyro in physical science must be acquainted with 

* From the London Mining Journal, No. 794. 

132 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

the action of the ordinary electrometer, which consists of a magnetic needle, 
moving on an axis, in a flattened helix.. Let us suppose this electrometer 
turned, so that its magnet may move vertically instead of horizontally; 
that to one end of this magnet is attached a rod, in which the pencil-shaped 
carbon electrode is secured; that the pointed end of another carbon 
electrode is placed in contact with the one joined to the magnet. This 
is the principle of the present simple invention. The voltaic current pass- 
ing through the electrodes, when -contact is broken, becomes incandescent; 
and the action of it in passing through the coil affords the means of main- 
taining the carbon points at their appropriate measure of approximation. 
Thus, exclusive of the s;and, conductors, and battery, the lamp consists 
of no more than three parts — the coil, the magnet, and the carbon holder; 
and the inventor informed us that, ornament apart, it might be made for 
Is. 6d. 

There were three lamps exhibited — one suspended from the ceiling; 
one upon a fixed pedestal; and the third a table lamp. The light was 
shown from each of them by turns; and, although a trifling contretemps 
occurred when the first one was alight, on the whole, there was sufficient 
to justify us in saying that, as an experiment, the exhibition was success- 
ful. The statement circulated on the occasion, in discussing the intro- 
duction of the voltaic light as a competitor of gas, compares the details of 
the two systems. It alleges that the voltaic lamps may be sold at prices 
equal to gas lamps, and to last 20 years for the three years which gas 
burners will endure; and that the mains and source of production of the 
two systems will give results much in favour of the electric light. 

As to the comparative cheapness of coal gas and electricity, it proceeds 
as follows: — 

Coal gas, as a manufacture, has now arrived at its mature state. Millions 
have been expended to perfect it. Talent, labour, money, and competition 
have done all that could be done to render it useful, cheap, and elegant 
in use. Now, assuming the price to be (say) 4s. per 1000 feet, we will 
examine what chance voltaic electricity has of competing with it, on the 
score of economy. The present state of the manufacture of electricity 
may be compared to the time when coal gas was made for the lecture 
table, before a pound was expended in its manufacture, and before it was 
even determined or thought possible to apply it to useful or commercial 
purposes; in fine, before die want created the manufacture, and brought 
it to maturity by the expenditure of money, science, labor, and experi- 
ence, employed during a series of years. Electricity is at present pro- 
duced from lecture table apparatus, and without the benefit or the advan- 
tages which have brought gas to its present state of perfection; yet 
electricity, under all these disadvantages, if produced from one of the 
present lecture table apparatus, and one of the dearest in use, will pro- 
duce a more light-giving agent for 8s. than 8s. worth of coal gas at 4s. 
per 1000 feet. 

If Mr. Allman's present experiments make out this fact, it will be suffi- 
cient to justify every effort to procure the adoption of this extremely beau- 
tiful agent of artificial illumination. 


On a Method of Fixing Colors upon Tissues.* 

When an egg is boiled in a color bath, the color immediately fixes 
itself to the shell. Egg-shells contain, like bones, an organic tissue and 
mineral salts. If it is attempted to dye these mineral salts, the phosphate 
or carbonate of lime, separately, it falls, and therefore neither of these 
salts can be the mordant. If, on the other hand, we attempt to color the 
organic tissue of egg-shells, or of bones, this immediately becomes dyed; 
hence it follows that the organic matter of the bones and egg-shells is the 
mordant. Now in the same manner as mineral mordants have hitherto 
been employed to fix coloring matters upon cotton, organic mordants may 
be used, and Broquette has already employed caseine for this purpose. 
The coating of vegetable fibres with animal matter was first carried out 
by Hausmann, as observed byBarreswil, but is said never to have reached 
any importance. The caseine must of course be first dissolved, in order 
that the tissues may be penetrated by the solution, but it must then be 
rendered insoluble in the tissues. Now it has been shown by Braconnet, 
that caseine forms a soluble compound with ammonia, which is again 
decomposed by boiling. Broquette therefore impregnates the goods with 
a solution of caseine in ammonia, then heats them to expel the ammonia, 
upon which the caseine remains in an insoluble state in the tissues. Cot- 
ton goods thus treated are saturated with animal matter, and may be now 
dyed in the same color baths as those used for woollen tissues. Frequently 
the dyes are alkaline; they then dissolve the caseine instead of being fixed 
by it. But since Bachelier used a mixture of lime and caseine as a 
cement, it has been known that such a mixture hardens and becomes 
fixed. Broquette therefore employs the caseine sometimes with lime alone, 
sometimes w r ith ammonia and lime together, and saturates the goods with 
this caseate of lime, which, in a warm atmosphere, soon sets, and then 
resists the alkalies and rinsing with alkaline liquids. By this treatment 
the cotton acquires a peculiar stiffness; so that, although its capacity for 
dyes has become nearly equal to that of wool, it is far behind the latter 
in lustre. But this evil also can be remedied by mixing the mordant 
with oil. Oil, caseine, and lime, form a mordant which fixes the colors 
with remarkable lustre. When the goods to be dyed consist of wool 
and cotton, a different plan has to be followed; the mordant, in this case, 
is not adapted for the two materials; the wool is deprived of its natural 
lustre, and the cotton is not sufficiently penetrated. For such goods 
Broquette employs the mordant before the weaving; it is applied to cotton 
in the spinning, when it can afterwards be woven and bleached like wool, 
without the mordant receiving any injury. When threads thus prepared 
are woven,' the tissues can be dyed just like woollen stuffs without further 
treatment. By means of the solution of caseate of lime, mineral color> 
which are insoluble in water can he adapted to the dying of stuffs; the> 
are mixed with the solution in the state of very fine powder. Thes<- 
liquid colors, which can be prepared with ultramarine, ochre, etc., can 
again be removed with water, unless they have been dried; but as soon 
as they coagulate, they adhere firmly to the tissues inclosing the coloring 

* From the London Artizan, for December, 1850. 
Vol. XXI.— Third Sehies.— No. 2.— FsBBOinr, 1851. 12 

134 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

principle. A farther application of this mordant of caseine, oil, and 
lime is in the printing of stuffs; in this case we are not limited merely to 
mineral colors, which, by its aid, may be fixed upon the goods, but the 
numerous vegetable colors may likewise be very well applied, by first 
converting them into lakes by means of alumina or protoxide of tin, and 
then using these lakes in the same manner as the powdered mineral colors. 
After being printed, the goods are wrapped in moist linen, and left for 
about half an hour in the moist vapor in a warm atmosphere. During 
this time the impressed color does not dry superficially, but is absorbed 
into the interior of the fibres, and is then completely fixed in a subsequent 

This new method of mordanting has already had considerable influence 
upon several pigments, such as archil, which has only been used for dying 
exceptionally. By Broquette's process some very beautiful colors are 
obtained from it, modifications of the peculiar color of the archil by lime. 
It will be evident that in this process of dying it is requisite to pass the 
goods through a lime bath, which will not do for many dyes, as the colors 
have their tints altered by such treatment. In such cases magnesia is to 
be substituted for lime. When goods are printed with the mineral colors 
or lakes according to the above process, very full colors are obtained, 
which, in the case of many patterns, is not desirable. To bring out the 
shades and half colors in the full colored impressions, the printed goods 
are placed with the colored surface upon an absorbing ground, and the 
forms pressed on the back. The printed portion pressed upon the ab- 
sorbing surface is deprived of some of its color, and numerous patterns 
can be produced in this manner. 

Translated for the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

New Process for Photography on Paper, by which Positive Pictures may 

by obtained directly. By M. F. Bousigues. (Extracted by the Author.) 

Any very even, slightly sized paper, free from stains and metallic 
spots, may be perfectly well applied to this new process. The papers 
of Canson & Lacroix, of Angouleme, have given me the best results. 

Three sheets are to be taken and dipped successively in distilled water, 
and stretched upon the glass of the frame, taking care to make them 
adhere at every point by means of a very fine linen. The one which 
appears best fitted to receive the impression from the light is to be placed 
upon the others; the latter serving only to maintain the adherence and 

When this moisture has disappeared, three or four drops of neutral 
nitrate of silver must be let fall on the surface of the paper, and rapidly 
spread by means of a brush. The traces of this solution disappear in a 
few minutes, leaving nothing on the paper but the appearance of a light 
vapor. In this state the paper is to be treated in the same way as a 
metallic plate. The vapors of iodine, and of the bromide of lime, will give 
it great sensitiveness, but it will be necessary to expose it for a longer 
time to the vapors of this latter substance. 

On the Economic Value of Coals. 135 

Here are such figures as I can give : — First iodizing 15 seconds; 
bromine 35 seconds; second iodizing 10 seconds. 

The glass is then placed in the frame and exposed to light, which 
operates on the paper almost with the same rapidity as on the plate of 
silver. Mercury makes the image visible. 

If the operation is well done, the exposure to light properly regulated, 
we obtain a positive image of a beauty comparable to that which the 
plate gives, and at least very superior in the softness of its tints to those 
by the ordinary process with gallic acid. — Proc. Acad. Sci., Paris, 
28th Oct., 1850. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 
Description of the Naval Dry Dock at Brooklyn. 

The stone dock at the Brooklyn Navy Yard being so far completed as 
to be used for the purposes intended, I send you the following descrip- 
tion of it : 

Length of dock from caisson to head .... 348 feet. 

Width of chamber at coping . . . . . . 98 " 

Depth of water at high tide . . . . . 27 " 

Gross amount of stone used, 30,000 cubic yards. 
Cost, up to January 1st, 1851, $1,933,640. 

For pumping out the water they have a vertical beam engine, having 
a cylinder of 50 inches diameter, and 12 feet stroke; the beam is of cast 
iron, 32 feet long, and at the opposite end from the cylinder there is a 
connecting rod attached to the crank shaft, on which is a fly-wheel of 
24 feet diameter. There are two single acting lifting pumps, (one being 
worked from each side of the beam,) lined with composition, 63 inches 
diameter and 8 feet stroke. The quantity of water to be removed is 
about 600,000 cubic feet, and the time occupied 3 hours; the smallest 
lift being 2^ feet, and the greatest 26 feet. Connected to the engine 
are three drop flue boilers, so arranged as to be used singly or together, 
at pleasure. The cut-off valve used on the engine is separate from the 
steam valves of the engine, and is so arranged that it may be adjusted 
at pleasure while the engine is in motion. The engine and pumps are a 
fine specimen of work, and were constructed by Mr. Kemble, at the 
West Point Foundry. B. 

On the Economic Values of Coals used in the Collins'' Tubular Boiler. 

To E. K. Collins, Esq., 

Agent for the New York and Liverpool Steamship Co., 

New York, Dec. 24, 1849. 

Dear Sir, — Having received orders from you to test, by experiment, 
the evaporative values of several kinds of Coal upon your "Vertical 
Tubular Boiler," and having discharged such duties, we hereby enclose 
you a copy of the report of said experiments with our views annexed. 

136 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

Our first experiment was with the Dauphin Rattling Run. It possesses 
high evaporative power, with considerable cohesion of its particles, so 
that it may not be broken into too small fragments by the constant attrition 
which it may experience in the vessel. It ignites very quick with natural 
draft, burns with a clear bright rlame, leaving but a slight soot deposit 
upon the tubes, owing to the free circulation of the air through the grate 
bars, rendering the combustion more perfect. In short, it requires little 
if any attention from the fireman until it is necessary to charge the furnaces 
with a fresh supply of coal. 

Our second experiment was with the Baltimore Cumberland. It ignites 
rapidly, producing a strong heat; shortly after which time, it runs together, 
often adhering to the grate bars, requiring much time and labor to separate 
it. Without the strictest attention, in a short time, it would entirely ex- 
clude the air from penetrating through the interstices of the coal, thereby 
producing a great loss of steam. It has very small cohesion of its parti- 
cles, requiring very careful handling to prevent it from crumbling into 
very small pieces. 

Our third and fourth experiments were with "Young's Mining Company" 
and "Maryland Mining Company." They produce the same effect as 
the second experiment, the results being all forced. 

Our fifth experiment was with the Erie — possessing rapidity of ignition, 
makes an intense fire, throwing off an immense volume of carbonaceous 
matter, causing the tubes to fur up in a very short time, also having an 
undue quantity of sulphur in it. 

Our sixth experiment was with the Dauphin Rattling Run; varies 
nothing from the first experiment. 

Our seventh experiment was with the "Maryland Mining Company;" 
results as before. 

Eighth experiment was with the Dauphin Backbone, slightly differing 
from the Rattling Run in evaporation and rapidity of ignition. 

Ninth experiment was with the Dauphin Rattling Run; still retaining 
the pre-eminence for marine purposes over any of the coals submitted for 
trial, requiring less labor by 75 per cent. — producing more steam in less 
time than any of the coals experimented with. 

Our tenth experiment was with the "Maryland Mining Company." 
Experienced the same difficulty as before, viz.: — running together, forming 
a heavy compact crust over the whole area of the grate, requiring frequent 
raking that the air might circulate through and ignite the surface or top of 
the coals, thereby occasioning the furnace doors to remain open much 
longer than the circumstances of the case ought to justify. 

Having given a brief review of the coals submitted to us for trial, it 
may be well to add, that the Dauphin Rattling Run (for marine purposes) 
meets our decided approval, from the experiments we have had of it. 

We remain, dear sir, 

Yours very respectfully, 

(Signed) Nathan Thompson, Jr. 

James Thompson. 


Temp, of Chimney. 

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Temp.of feed water. 

Mean pressure of 
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Report of A. L. Roumfort, Superintendent Columbia and Philadelphia 
R. R., on the Experiments made with the Coal Burner, ''Henry A. 

Superintendent's Office, Parkesburg, Nov. 27, 1850. 
To the Honorable, the Board of Canal Commissioners, Harrisburg, Pa.: 

Gentlemen : — The undersigned, Superintendent of Motive Power on 
the Columbia and Philadelphia Railroad, having been instructed by your 
Board to test, practically, the Patent Movable Fire Box, for burning 
Anthracite Coal in Locomotive Engines, invented by John J. DeHaven, 
respectfully reports : 

That on taking charge of the Road, on the first of September last, 
he found the locomotive "Henry A. Muhlenberg," refitted for testing this 
experiment, which was done, as he was informed, by your order, under 
the superintendence of his predecessor, Colonel Wm. English. The 
improvement purported to consist : first, in the substitution of Anthracite 
or Bituminous Coal, as a fuel, for wood, in generating steam; thereby 
saving from 30 to 50 per cent, in the cost for fuel to the State. And 
secondly, in constructing a detached and movable Fire Box, entirely 
separate from the Engine and Boiler; and in such a manner, by the use 
of flanches, bolts, and connecting pipes, as to attach it to a Boiler, and 
detach it when necessary for repairs, in a space of time not exceeding 
twenty-four hours. This latter, (which is the particular improvement 
covered by DeHaven's patents,) was designed to remove the greatobjec- 
tion to the use of Coal Burners, in generating steam, both in Locomotives 
and Marine Boilers : viz. the loss of time necessarily incurred in the 
frequent repairs of the fire box. 

It has been satisfactorily ascertained, long since, that in this section of 
the country, where w T ood as a fuel is more costly than coal, and becoming 
more so annually, that the use of coal in the generation of steam, would 
be a large item of economy. And accordingly, within the last ten years, 
experiments made on our principal Railroad and Steam Navigation Lines, 
have proved to a demonstration, that coal can be used for the purpose of 
generating steam, in such a way as to be entirely satisfactory, and with 
a saving of from 30 to 50 per cent., according to the relative value of 
wood and coal. 

The obstacle, however, in the way of its general introduction, has been 
found to consist in the fact, that the heat produced by coal, being more 
intense in the fire box than that of wood, this intense heat, together with 
the chemical action of the coal upon the lining of the fire box, destroyed 
it, in a comparatively short period of time; and that although the great 
saving in the first cost of fuel, made the actual cost of the repairs of the 
fire box, no object; yet, the loss of time occasioned by those frequent 
repairs was, and still is, a serious evil. For instance : a coal burner in 
full active duty, may burn out her box in from 6 to 18 months, according 
to her capacity and service. It would cost from $500 to $1000 to repair 
her. This cost, however, is much more than made up by the difference 
of the cost of coal and wood; but the time consumed in making this re- 
pair, would involve a loss of from four to six w r eeks on a locomotive, 
when the engine required no other repairs. 

Steam Propellers between Philadelphia and Liverpool. 1 39 

DeHaven's Movable Box is so constructed, that each locomotive or 
marine boiler, may have duplicate fire boxes, so that when the one in use 
is burnt out, or becomes injured in any way, it can be removed, and the 
duplicate put in its place, in a period of twenty-four hours. 

In constructing a new locomotive, the cost would not be greater with 
this improvement than without it. The expense of altering a locomotive, 
so as to adapt this movable fire box to it, would be from $500 to $1000, 
according to the capacity of the boiler, including the cost of the box 

To test the qualities of the Coal Burner "Henry A. Muhlenberg," she 
was put in service on the 17th of October last, and has continued to run 
without intermission up to the present time, during which period she 
made thirty-four trips between the head of the Schuylkill Inclined Plane 
and Columbia, a distance of seventy-six miles. This locomotive, when 
in good repair, burning wood, could draw over the road twenty-one 
loaded cars, averaging from ten to twelve miles an hour. She has satis- 
factorily proved, during her recent trial, that she can run from ten to 
twelve miles per hour, and draw upwards of twenty-one loaded cars, 
burning anthracite coal. 

To do this work, burning wood, requires at least two cords : burning 
coal, one ton and a half. During the whole experiment of thirty-four 
trips, the fire box, which is attached to the frame and boiler, has remain- 
ed perfectly firm and works as well as if it were stationary, and no in- 
convenience having arisen in these experiments on account of the box 
being movable, I can see no objection to its use. From my observation 
and experience, I believe that this fire box, with an adequate force, might 
be removed, and a ready made duplicate substituted in twenty-four hours, 
so as to detain the locomotive for this purpose no longer than that length 
of time. 

The result of this test is, therefore, entirely satisfactory to me, and I 
recommend the whole matter to the future consideration of your Board. 

A. L. Roumfort, 
Superintendent Columbia and Philadelphia R. R. 

December 20th, 1850. — Approved by the Board, 

Morris Longstreth, President. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 
Steam Propellers between Philadelphia and Liverpool. 

During the past month the "City of Glasgow" has made her appear- 
ance at our wharves, being the first steamship to this port from Europe, 
and the pioneer of the new line, which is to consist of the following 
ships: — "City of Glasgow," (iron,) about 1500 tons, with two engines, 
66 inch cylinders, 5 feet stroke, geared to the propeller, which is 13 
feet diameter, making two revolutions to the engines' one; "City of 
Philadelphia," now building in Scotland, to be similar to the "Glasgow." 

The third ship is building in New York, of wood, machinery by the 
West Point Foundry, and consists of two vertical trunk engines; diame- 
ter of cylinders 85i inches, and of trunks 39 inches, leaving an effective 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

area of 4546 inches; stroke 4 feet 3 inches. They are connected direct 
to the propeller shaft, and intended to make 34 revolutions, with 15 lbs. of 
steam, cutting off at half stroke. Diameter of propeller, 16 feet, with 
three blades made of iron, and weighs about 20,000 lbs. 

The fourth ship is to be built here, and is to be of the same size and 
power as the third. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Steam Log of the Steamer British Queen. 

The following is a copy of the steam log of the steamer "British 
Queen," when plying between Portsmouth, England, and New York, 
November, 1839. 

Table shoiving the average working of the "British Queen" steamship, from the time 
of her leaving Portsmouth until her arrival at New York, in November, 1839. 


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38 12 


ion from noon till arrival a 
between London and P 

New York, 


rotal co 




This ship was fitted with Hall's surface condenser, that furnished fresh 
water to the boilers. It will be observed that the vacuum is remarkably 
good, and very steady, much more so than in a jet condenser, which 
may be accounted for by the water being evaporated and condensed 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 141 

parts, with the atmospheric air mixed with it; also, by not taking in 
air with the water used for condensation, as in the jet condenser. 

The consumption of fuel, it will be seen, is between 30 and 31 tons 
per 24 hours. This is very moderate, (and may be attributed to the 
fresh water in the boilers,) when the size of the engines and ship are 
considered, which were as follows: — Length of keel, 225 feet; between 
perpendiculars, 245 feet; beam, 40 feet; depth, 27^ feet. 

Two side lever engines, cylinders 77^ in. diameter; stroke 7 feet; cus- 
tom house tonnage, 1862. 

The operation of Hall's condenser in this and other ships has demon- 
strated the practicability of condensing steam sufficiently rapid by ex- 
posing it to a cooling metallic surface. 

This kind of condenser has been pretty much laid aside, in consequence 
of two principal objections. 

One is, that it is extremely difficult to keep it tight, especially the 
tubes where they are attached to the tube plate. The pressure of the 
atmosphere being on the external surface, acts to force the water sur- 
rounding into the interior, and mixing with the fresh water. 

The other is, that if any derangement occurs to prevent its operation, 
the engine is useless in consequence. If these defects were removed, 
the greatest benefit would be derived from the use of fresh water in the 
boilers of sea steamers. 

The following are the times of some of the passages made by the 
"British Queen," when plying between New York and Portsmouth, 

Sailed from London and Portsmouth for New York, May 2d, 1840, 
arrived May 15th — time, 13 days 11 hours. 

March 2d, 1839, arrived on 17th — time, 14 days 21 hours. 

Sailed from New York for Portsmouth, England, August 1st, 1839, 
arrived on 14th — time, 12 days 19 hours; from pilot at New York, to 
pilot at Portsmouth, England, 13^ days. W. S. 


Proceedings of the Stated Monthly Meeting, January 16, 1851. 

S. V. Merrick, President, in the chair. 

Thomas Fletcher, Vice President. 

Isaac B. Garrigues, Recording Secretary. 

John F. Frazer, Treasurer. 

The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. 

Donations were received from Hon. Joseph R. Chandler, U. S. Con- 
gress; The American Institute, City of New York; Messrs. Charles E. 
Smith and Solomon W. Roberts, Philadelphia. 

The periodicals received in exchange for the Journal of the Institute 
were laid on the table. 

The Treasurer's statement of the receipts and payments for the month 
of December; also his annual statement and the annual report of the trans- 
actions for the Journal of the Institute, were read. 


Franklin Institute. 

The Board of Managers and the Standing Committees reported their 

Candidates for membership in the Institute (4) were proposed, and 
those proposed at the last meeting (7) were elected members of the In- 

The Committee on Exhibitions handed to the President the gold medals 
awarded at the meeting in November, which were delivered to such of 
the parties to whom they were awarded, as were present. 

The Tellers of the annual election for Officers, Managers and Audi- 
tors for the ensuing year, reported the result, when the President declared 
the following gentlemen as duly elected : 

Samuel V. Merrick, President. 

John Agnew, ) ,,. „ . , 
ai i_ TiT-ii t Vice Presidents. 
Abraham Miller, ) 

Isaac B. Garrigues, Recording Secretary. 

Solomon W. Roberts, Corresponding Secretary. 

John F. Frazer, Treasurer. 


Frederick Fraley, 
John Wiegand, 
John C. Cresson, 
Ambrose W. Thompson, 
Thomas U. Walter, 
Edwin Greble, 
David S. Brown, 
Owen Evans, 
Alan Wood, 
William E. Morris, 
James P. Ellis, 
Henry P. M. Birkinbine, 

Henry H. Kelley, 
John C. Copper, 
George W. Conarroe, 
John Thornley, 
Robert Lindsay, 
Thomas J. Weygandt, 
George W. Farr, 
Peleg B. Savery, 
George P. Herse, 
Eliashib Tracy, 
George P. Whitaker, 
Joseph I. Barras. 


Algernon S. Roberts, 
Samuel Mason, 
Uriah Hunt. 

Mr. G. W. Smith, Chairman of the Committee, brought before the 
meeting a specimen of bitumen from Pictou, N. S., where it is found in 
considerable quantities, and nearly pure. 

Mr. Isaac Lea called the attention of the Institute to some specimens of 
semi-bituminous and transition coal, from Dauphin, on the Susquehanna, 
8 miles above Harrisburg, and made the following remarks: 

The Dauphin and Susquehanna Coal Company's land included that portion of the 
west end of the first, or southern coal field, which was semi-bituminous, and that it was 
the nearest coal to tide water in Pennsylvania, being 90 miles to Havre de Grace. 

The map exhibited of the several coal fields was made by R. C. Taylor, who, as 
geologist and mine engineer, explored this coal district, and reported most favorably on 
it. By it, it may be seen that the southern line of granite arrests the tide water, and thus 
forms shipping ports at Georgetown, Baltimore, Havre de Grace, Philadelphia, and 
Trenton. The parallelism to these ports, of the three coal fields — the southern, middle, 
and northern, or Wilkesbarre — showed the general direction of the stratification of 
the various formations — running nearly east and west — from the primary rocks to the car- 
boniferous series. 

The "hardest" anthracite is found at the east end of the southern or Pottsville coal 
field, near to the Lehigh, at Mauch Chunk, and proceeding westward the same veins or 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 143 

seams become "softer"— that is to say, they possess more volatile mutter. The coal at 
Pottsville is more easily ignited, and burns more rapidly than that at Mauch Chunk. In 
Pine Grove district, 12 miles west of Pottsville, the coal is "softer" still; and 10 miles 
further again, in the Pequa Company's land, the coal of the same veins contains still 
more volatile matter, and burns with a white flame, but does not coke. This is called 
transition coal, and is such as is used for making iron in South Wales, at Merthyr 
Tydvil. It is there called "iron-making coal." Four miles further west, at Yellow 
Spring Gap, is found the true semi-bituminous coal, which cokes or swells in burning, 
but docs not "bind" or cement. This quality permits the draft of air to pass through 
and keep the carburetted hydrogen and carbonic oxide gases constantly ignited; hence 
the absence of smoke. This condition admirably adapts this coal for steamers and loco- 
motives. All the European steamers use this kind of coal, which is obtained from South 
Wales, and it is carried to all parts of the world, where steamers ply, for that purpose. 
Four miles further west, at Rattling Run Gap, the quantity of volatile matter is still 
greater, aud the coal burns quicker. Three miles further again, at the Big Flats, the 
coal will bind. Here the veins have narrowed down to three feet in thickness. 

The coal at the east end of this coal field, at Lehigh, contains about 6 per cent, of 
volatile matter, while the transition coal of Rausch Gap contains about 1 1 per cent., and 
the semi-bituminous coal of Yellow Spring Gap has 14 per cent., and that of Rattling 
Run 17 per cent. 

This gradation is well marked in the specimens presented, and the change in this coal 
field may be compared to that of South Wales, and Donetz in the south of Russia, where 
the same condition of things exists — that is, hard anthracite at one end, and bituminous 
at the other, with the intermediate gradual changes. The analogy of the coals of Dauphin 
county with the celebrated Welsh coals, may be understood by the following analyses: 

Dauphin Coal. Vol. Matter.] Welsh Coal. Vol. Matter. 

Yellow Springs, Kugler vein, 9-80 |Aberdeen Blast Furnace, 8-33 

Backbone vein, 14-88 

Rattling Run, Perseverance vein, 15-80 

Grey vein, 11-40 

Lea vein, 8-96 

Grey vein, black part, 9-78 

Peacock vein, 9-00 

Tredegar coal, 15-20 

Dowlas Big vein, 15-62 

Dowlas Big vein, central part, 11-87 

Mountain vein, Merthyr, 8-48 

Cwm-dhu pit, " ' 9-22 

Raslas vein, Aberdaire Iron Works, 9-11 

Coals may be classified into four divisions — Bituminous, Semi-bituminous, Transition 
and Anthracite. Anthracite burns with a weak blue flame, and does not swell, making 
an intense but concentrated heat. Transition coal burns with a short white flame, and 
does not swell or coke. Semi-bituminous coal burns rapidly, gives out a long white 
flame, (carburetted hydrogen,) swells much, docs not bind, and makes very little smoke. 
It evaporates more water than any other kind of coal. Bituminous coal burns with a 
white flame, swells, and while coking "binds," or cements, making much smoke. 

The Dauphin Coal Company have finished their railroad in the most substantial man- 
ner, with H rail, of the best quality, so that it is said to be equal to any 20 miles in the 
State. The western terminus is at the town of Dauphin, 8 miles above Harrisburg, where 
the company have a basin and large depot, constructed to ship, by the Susquehanna State 
Canal, any reasonable quantity of coal to market. The works were finished late in the au- 
tumn, but in time to send over 4000 tons to market, which has been used in part by Collins' 
line and other steamers. The engineers of Collins' line reported the Dauphin coal to be 
"pre-eminent for marine purposes over any of the coals submitted for trial, requiring 
less labor by 75 per cent." than the. Cumberland coal, which evaporated in an hour onlv 
423-5 lbs. of water, while the Dauphin coal evaporated in the same time 523-8 lbs. — thus 
producing nearly 25 per cent, more steam in a given time. 

The Dauphin Company's works being now complete, and all their connexions made, 
they will commence their regular trade with the opening of the Susquehanna Canal, 
early in March, when their coal will, it is believed, go into general use in locomotives, as 
well as steamers, successful experiments having been made in the former by Mr. Baldwin, 
and other experienced engine builders and engineers. 

Mr. Laurence Myers presented his new Railroad Car Revolver, and 
made the following remarks : 

This car consists of two wrought iron cylinders, with plain wrought iron heads, with 
the rim or fellowe of a railroad wheel slipped over each end of the same, and riveted 

144 Franklin Institute. 

thereto. The door extends lengthwise the cylinders between the wheels, and is in four 
equal parts; it is secured by means of an iron bolt passing over it, and through the wheels. 
Within each cylinder is placed a partition the whole length and depth, and in the centre 
of the same. The two cylinders are connected together by a wooden frame, which rest 
on journals bolted to each end of the cylinder. 

The principle upon which this car is based, being of centrifugal motion, its contents 
can receive no injury, whilst the partition in the centre also prevents injury during a 
slower motion, and effectually retains the centre of gravity. 

A car of this description has been recently tried on the Reading Railroad with entire 

The distance from Port Carbon to Port Richmond is 95 miles, and the time on the 
road was 9j hours, owing entirely to the crowded state of the road; otherwise the distance 
could have been accomplished in about 5 hours. The weight of coal received at Port 
Carbon, in a car of two cylinders, G feet long by 42 inches diameter, was 2 tons 17 cwt. 
2 qrs., gross weight, and the weight delivered at Port Richmond was 2 tons 16 cwt. 3 qrs. 
12 lbs., showing an actual loss of only one per cent. — five per cent, being allowed on that 
road, and the actual loss being, it is said, 2^ per cent. It may be as well to observe that 
this car must not be run less than 12 miles per hour, excepting the necessary slow mo- 
tions on the road, and as many more miles per hour the better. 

It will be observed in the construction of this car, that the load or weight is directly 
on the road; that the axletrees, springs, patent boxes, &c, &c, arc entirely dispensed with; 
consequently there is but very little friction, say 5 per cent, of the weight, and will not 
require more oil or grease than the weight of the frame on the journals may occasion 
the use of, which is very trifling. The saving of oil is great. 

There is less liability of breaking down, or running off the track, the one half of the 
load being below the centre. In such a contingency the contents are entirely safe, and 
not scattered over the road, and the car easily replaced on the road. 

Not only the economy of its construction, but of its repair, must forcibly recommend 
its use for the transportation of Anthracite and Bituminous coal, grain, lime, &c., &c. 

Another great advantage presents itself, that it will not require more than half the 
motive power, from its peculiar construction, that is now required for cars of ordinary 
use, and that the wear on the road will be much less, is confidently relied upon. 

A specimen of tin pipe, of various sizes, from Messrs. Lowber & Leroy, 
Water street, New York, was presented by G. W. Smith. This pipe is 
made of pure block tin, and sold at prices little exceeding that of lead 
pipe. A schedule of the prices was also given. The superior strength 
of the tin enables the pipe to be made much thinner, and in the rare 
cases where pure water is to be conveyed, or water containing chlorides, 
&.c, the deleterious effects resulting from lead pipe are avoided. 

Pirsson's condensers in the steamship Osprey having just been opened 
for the purpose of inspection, had been examined by Messrs. Bartol and 
Smith, and found to be clean and in good order, after about a year's 
constant use, and had given much satisfaction to the examiners. 

Specimens of galvanized type, covered with copper, which had been 
in use for nearly a million of impressions, were exhibited and compared 
with ordinary type in use in the same form, and for a similar number of 
impressions, The galvanized type still preserved considerable sharpness, 
while the ordinary type was considerably worn. This subject will be 
again before the Institute, with additional details. 

Proceedings of the Board of Managers. 

At a meeting held January 22d, David S. Brown, Esq., was elected 
Chairman, and Messrs. Alan Wood and Thomas J. Weygandt, Curators, 
for the ensuing year. 







MARCH, 1851. 


Remarks upon the Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. ( Written 

January, 1849.)* 
Continued from page 84. 

Having thus given the result as taken upon an extreme amount of mile- 
age, I will proceed to show the calculation upon a more moderate amount 
of work. 

I have before observed (note § p. 81) that I don't think any engine ever 
did run 300,000 miles in 10 years. Innumerable unforeseen circumstances 
may occur to detain her, some unexpected casualty may stop her at a time 
when it is inconvenient to turn her into the "Hospital" to repair — three 
or four days will pass, or a week, and when it is fairly taken in hand, 
many incidents may again occasion delay. f I will, therefore, relieve her 
of 50,000 miles in the 10 years, and assume her gross mileage run to 
be a quarter of a million — say 250,000 miles, which I think might be done 
without very much difficulty. Upon this I will take the last computation, 
when we assumed the renewing system to be adopted, — viz., 2Jd. per 
mile run for current repairs. 

t Among others may be enumerated — 1st, The fad that the defect not unfrequently proves 
to be more serious than was expected — 2nd, The having to wait tor some special material 
to replace a broken part — 3dly, It not unfrequently happens, that when a particular job 
is put into the hands of the best workmen, they will the next day absent themselves drink- 
ing, and be off work two or three days. In very special jobs, of course, others may be put 
in their places, but generally speaking, it is a bad policy to put one man's work into the 
hands of another. It frequently lays the foundation of disorganization and disquietude 
among workmen, the result of which is serious, to a degree almost incredible. 

• From the London Railway Journal, for November, 1850. 

Voi. XXI.— TuinD Series.— Xo. 3.— Maiicii, 1851. 13 

146 Civil Engineering. 

The account will then stand thus: — 

2^d. per mile on 250,000 miles, say . . . £2600 

Deduct the same charge for fire-boxes and tubes as in the former case* 1100 

Balance ...... £1500 

This amount of .£1500 has to be divided, as before, into allowances 
for casual current repairs for 10 years, and four thorough repairs — viz., 
one at the end of every 50,000 miles, or 20 months running. When I 
assumed 60,000 miles for 20 months work, I appropriated 425/. for 10 
years for casualties. Having reduced the mileage 5000 miles per annum, 
I will make a proportionate reduction of this charge, and call it 360/. for 
incidental repairs during the 10 years, leaving 1140/. for four thorough 
repairs, or 285/. f every 50,000 miles run, to put her in proper order 
for resuming another. 

Assuming that she is "kept going" at this rate of expenditure, and that 
by spinining out her distance for the last 20 months, into two years, as be- 
fore remarked, (note § p. 83,) she gets through her work of 250,000 miles 
in 10 years. 1 assert, that if offered for sale, she would not realize more 
than was supposed in the previous case of expending 400/. every 60,000 
— viz., 400/.,| and therefore, to replace her at the end of her supposed 
il life," with a new engine, we must have an account as follows: — 

By credit of old engine ...... £400 

Reserve of l|d. per mile beyond current expenditure on 250,000 miles 1822 

Assumed bank interest on reserve fund .... 215 

Balance required beyond l£d. per mile .... 63 


Thus showing that if she get through the fair work of a quarter of a million 
of miles in 10 years, a current expenditure of 2^d. per mile, and a reserve 
fund of upwards of lfd. per mile, or a clear total of upwards of 4^d. per 
mile, must be appropriated to replace her with a new engine at the end 
of 10 years. 

Let us now view the other side of the question as before — viz., that it 
be intended to maintain the original engine, and to turn her out fully re- 
paired after running 250,000 miles, in 10 years, to commence a similar 
period of work. 

I charge her first of all with 1375/. as before for tubes and fire-boxes, 
1 will next allow 90/. every 20 months' work, in work, for incidental re- 

* It may appear strange that the same charge should be made for these items, with 15 
per cent, less work done. I premised that it was almost more than possible that the other 
amount of work could be done, and I now put this as a fair allowance for this distance. I 
would also remark that much advantage is gained by renewing a fire-box and tubes early 
enough, the loss incurred by letting them run too long is incalculable. 

t This amount cannot but be admitted to be a minimum. I have relieved her of work, 
but cost does not decrease quite in the same ratio on the large amount of work assumed. 
She may be kept going at this sum, but her sale at the end of 10 years will be fully as 
doubtful as in the other case. 

J The truth of this parallel maybe questioned on account of the less wear and tear from 
the less quantity of work done. Be it remembered, that though the work be less, the gross 
allowance of money is proportionably less, and that at last it will be a case of selling. 

Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. 147 

pairs,* and say, 2150/. to be divided into five thorough repairs — viz., 
four of 400/. each during her 10 years servitude, and 550/. for the last, 
to prepare her to commence her new career. f 

The accounts for 10 years will then stand thus: — 

Fire-boxes and tubes ...... £1375 

£90 every two years for casualties ..... 450 

Four thorough repairs at £400 each .... 1600 

One final ditto at £550 ...... 550 


Showing a gross cost of 3975/. on a quarter of a million of miles run, 
or a small fraction more than 3fd. per mile, or still an advantage of at least 
^d. per mile run in favor of maintaining stock in preference to reneiuing it. 

I have assumed throughout that the engine has always a fair load to 
draw, and therefore we see, that in addition to the obvious direct advantage 
we have also a benefit to accrue indirectly. In the one case, the engine 
being always in perfect condition, will take her load as she ought to do. 
In the other case, being gradually wearing down, she will lose power in 
proportion, and involve a consequent loss of many pounds sterling to the 
Company by taking diminished loads. 

It is plain from the above result, that under the best circumstances a 
clear ainountybr repairs of at least 3.\d. per train per mile, must be expended 
upon engines, if they are to be properly maintained without depreciation, 
but that if the stock is to be relieved by the occasional substitution of new 
engines, a charge of 4d. per mile is involved, and as a railway Proprietor 
I submit that no board of Directors is justified in adopting the latter system, 
and thereby sacrificing -^-d. per mile, which would otherwise go to the 
increase of dividend. 

It is argued by some parties, that, by substituting new engines, ad- 
vantage may be taken of improvements which from time to time may be 
made in their construction. When traffic increased so rapidly, as to render 
it necessary to adopt a larger class of engine, this argument was in a slight 
degree well grounded; but it has now been for some time known to what 
extent power and weight can be economically carried, and as to minor 
improvements, who is, or who ought to be, better qualified to project or 
carry them out cheaply than the Company's superintendent himself? who 
sees day by day the engines working, and has hourly opportunity of 
marking defects where there are any. Moreover, there are very many- 
engines of old construction which might be materially enlarged at a less 
cost than buying new ones, and if the Company have not the means of 
doing it in their own workshops, they should send them to some first rate 
manufacturer and get them done. 

* It will be remembered, that in computing the cost of "renewing," I made a reduction 
from £425 on 300,000 miles to £360 on 250,000 for incidental repairs. In the case of main- 
taining I only reduce from £500 to £450. This lessens my amount applicable to thorough 
repairs in a trilling ratio more than the other, but I well know that the difference properly 
spent in occasional repairs will make a proportionate dilfercnce on thorough repairs. 

t I believe that in practice this would be found more than enough, and that 3$d. per mile 
would still be found sufficient to keep her "up to the mar/,-" at 25,000 miles a year. I 
have, however, been liberal to avoid the charge of being prejudiced, and am convinced that 
the amounts named for maintaining (provided an engine runs the distance), will, at the end 
of 10 years, turn out as well made an engine as any manufacturer would supply. 

148 Civil Engineering. 

1 have yet to learn the advantage of selling an engine and tender for 
400/. even though it required 100/. or more to refit her. 400/. is her 
marketable value; but her effective value, I hold to he, her prime cost of 
2500/. less the amount required to repair her. There are plenty of sta- 
tionary engines, which have been working in mills and elsewhere for half a 
century, and which, if there be no special demand for additional power, 
will continue to do so to the end of time, efficiently as at first. I appre- 
hend that the owners of such engines would be considered as verging on 
insanity, were they to pull out the old one and put in a new one for pure 
moonshine. The case of locomotives is a parallel one, except that in the 
one case, the private individuals would be doing as they liked with their 
own, and in the other, the Directors would be spending the money of 
other people. 

I think I have thus shown, that the practicability of maintaining stock 
is not only not impossible, but that it is decidedly the most economical 
system to pursue. 

I will now make a few brief remarks on "depreciation;" and in the first 
place I would refer to a former remark, where I deny that any Company 
can substantiate the assertion that depreciation does not exist. 

The question of depreciation has frequently been a subject of discussion 
at the periodical meetings of Railway Companies, and there have been a 
pro and an a>i//-depreciation fund party. The Directors and those officers 
whose positions require them to assist at such meetings, have almost 
invariably opposed the adoption of such a fund, and have given as 
their reason their unqualified belief, that the stock was all in full and 
effective order, and that it could not be better. Now, the fact is this: 
As Jong as the trains keep good time and the whole traffic is kept punc- 
tually going, the Directors generally and the officers above alluded to naturally 
suppose and believe that "all's right," and that the engines are well up to 
the mark, and in first rate order. But as to the reality, let me ask, how 
a Secretary or General Manager (unless he be a bred engineer) can for 
a moment be supposed capable of judging whether an engine be worth 
500/. or 2500/.? A bank clerk might as well be supposed to pronounce 
at a glance the value of a line of battle ship, or a soldier of a cast iron 

It is further argued by the anti-fund party, that there is no clue by 
which to arrive at the amount required, and thus the fear of voting too 
great a sum, together with the lack of "fixity of tenure" which exists in 
all joint stock companies, have overruled the point, and every tangible 
farthing has been voted by the then existing proprietary to dividend. 

It is the locomotive superintendents alone who can answer the com- 
prehensive question, u Is your house in orderV and I would just ask any 
one of these officers on the leading railways of this country, "Where are 
all the engines that did the work of the line from 1840 to 1846, and in 
what condition are they all at the present time?" Let the secretary first 
state the prime cost of them, and also to what amount revenue has been 
debited for new ones to replace old since then, and then let the answers to 
those two questions be taken as proof whether any depreciation has existed 
or not. 

Cost of Repairs of Locomotive Engines. 149 

Again, three years ago, when every old engine that could be made 
to move, was called into request, there was a general crying chorus, "We 
are sadly short of engines," "Many are working double shifts," "We can't 
get new ones half fast enough." Now let me ask, what proportion of 
branch lines have been opened since that date? I know that an ex- 
traordinary number of new engines, of the heaviest calibre, have been de- 
livered, and although traffic has decreased in proportion^ we have still the 
old cry, "We have not one engine to spare." 1 dare say this is the truth; 
but why is it so? Where are the veterans that tugged through the un- 
paralleled traffic of 1845 and 1846, and the early part of 1847? Many 
of course are still at work. But where are the others? Some here and 
some there on sidings, or where any corner can be found to stow them. 
And why is this? The fact is, that till about two years and a half ago, the 
whole stock of engines was so completely occupied that there was not time 
to give them thorough repairs. They were patched and kept going as 
well as circumstances would permit, at a strained cost of say 2d. or 2^d. 
per mile, and day by day rapidly depreciating, and, had not relief come, 
the traffic must have been most irregularly worked, if not to some extent 
suspended. Relief, however, did come, but whence? A rapid delivery 
of powerful new engines commenced, and continued for several half-years, 
and though nominally ordered for branches, they were put to work, and still 
work the chief bulk of the traffic on the main lines. 

These engines were of course paid for out of capital, and they went to 
devote the prime of their efficiency to (he relief of their over-worked stock. 
But, was that old stock gradually taken into the hospital to be systematically 
and thoroughly repaired/ And will it be all completely refitted and ready 
i i its turn to '• return thecompliment" and relieve the engines which relieved 
it } I don't hesitate to assert that such has not been the case to the extent, 
or nearly so, that it ought to have been. When the oldest engines were 
relieved they ought to have been regularly brought in for thorough refitting, 
and the expenditure of 2d. or 2|d. per mile, charged to revenue, should 
have been honestly increased to 3^d. or 3|d.; and I affirm, that, if a further 
demand is not to be made upon capital for the ill-judged purpose of 
^indirect relief'' that sum must inevitably be expended out of earnings 
or, at least, l^d. per train per mile on every engine be '■funded''' to pay 
for relays of new engines. 

There is yet another light in which to view depreciation, which, though 
I am an advocate for the entire erasion of the term from the railway voca- 
bulary, should be mentioned and explained. Suppose, for instance, 10 
new engines be delivered to a Company on the 1st of January, and run 
every day that month, they will in effective value (having brought all their 
working parts to an easy bearing) be worth more to the Company on the 
1st of February than when first delivered; but they ivould not sell for lohat 
they cost. This diminution in marketable value (which must always exist 
between actual new and second-hand articles, and would probably be no 
more at the end of 12 months than at the end of four weeks,) is not, I think 
a kind of depreciation for which provision should be made, though private 
owners of machinery do allow it at their first stock taking. I have main- 


150 Civil Engineering. 

tained that generally as regards railways it should not be a current in- 
creasing item, and will, therefore, not insist that a demand should be made 
for first diminution in marketable value; reversing the proverb, I will 
"swallow the gnat," but I must decidedly "strain at," or rather decline 
altogether, to "swallow the camel." 

Notes on Steam Navigation on Shallow Rivers, being the result of eighteen 
years'' experience on the Loire and Garonne, by a Practical Engineer.'* 

In the year 1827, some engines having been constructed in Liverpool 

for steamers to run on the Loire, I was sent out to superintend the fitting 

and working of the boats, and arrived at Nantes on the 25th of May, 1827. 

I had only been there two months when the boats were all stopped, owing 

to the shallowness of the water. The first year I did not think much about 

it, but the second, I began to think that something could be done to reinedy 

this serious evil; but I was told by everybody that there was no help for 

it. I was not, however, of their opinion, and my first job was to make a 

high pressure boiler, to replace one of Fawcett's, and which I patented. 

This boiler was of a cylindrical form, with d shaped flues, and weighed one 

ton less than the old one, which weighed 5 tons and worked at 4 lbs. per 

square inch. By the increased pressure, 24 lbs. per square inch, which 

this boiler would carry with safety, the power of the engine was nearly 

doubled, and the speed of the boat much increased. A very strong 

opposition had been started against our companyby a rival company, 

which had got engines from Barnes and Miller of London, and their boats 

previously beat ours by an hour, and took all the traffic from us. With 

the new boiler we beat them by an hour and a half, and the opposition 

was soon over. This was in 1830. In 1831, 1 made a 24-horse engine 

for a boat that had a 12-horse engine in, previously, but the new engine 

was lighter than the old one. I carried 30 lbs. pressure in the boiler, 

and by making the condenser larger than usual, and keeping the air pump 

the ordinary size, I found I could get as good a vacuum as in a low pressure 

eno-ine. In 1832, I began to think seriously about building light iron 

steamers, for the boats were all stopped about three months every summer, 

and at the very time when most money was to be made. But in this 

attempt I was worse off than Noah, for I had no one to give me the least 

instruction how to draught, or calculate, or build a boat, but I thought I 

would try; so I began by displacing a cubic foot of water and weighing it, 

and then I weighed a square foot of sheet iron, and a lineal foot of iron 

for the ribs. Then I made models and put them afloat, and worked on 

in this way the most part of 1832. In the beginning of 1833 I found that 

I could build a boat that would draw only ek>ht inches of water, but I 

told the company nine inches, but they would not risk any money on it; 

so I spoke to some of my friends about it, and in three months we had the 

affair all settled. However, when the company got to know of it, they 

came forward, and would have an interest in it. At first we thought that 

we should be better without them, but to our misfortune we did not stop 

in that mind, for we found out, when it was too late, that they only did 

• From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

On Steam Navigation on Shalloio Rivers. 151 

it, to keep our company from prospering, and by their intrigues they 
succeeded in doing so. I tried the engine on Christmas Day, and on New 
Year's Day we ran the boat about four leagues. She was drawing only- 
six inches of water, but had nothing in her, except the engines, and boilers, 
and about a ton of coals. To give a better idea of the boat, I will de- 
scribe her construction. Length, 100 feet; breadth, 10 feet 5 inches. 
The sheet iron she was built of was one-eleventh of an inch thick, the 
ribs 3 lbs. to the lineal foot, and two feet apart. The sides of the boat 
3 feet 6 inches high, and where the engines were, 5 feet 6 inches. The 
iron for the paddle boxes, etc., was as light as I could get it. The cabins 
were made with strong canvas, with a light wood framing; the outside 
was well tarred, and the inside lined with fine cloth. Fore and aft the 
cabins there was a kind of platform, where the passengers could enjoy the 
air, under an awning. Where the cabins were, there was a small gang- 
way, outside the boat, for the men to pass fore and aft without going 
through the cabins.' The engine was a beam engine, of 24-horse power, 
with sheet iron beams, made very thin and deep. In like manner every 
advantage was taken to use wrought iron for strength and lightness. Di- 
ameter of cylinder 16 inches, and 2 feet stroke. Paddle wheels 12 feet 
diameter, 4 feet wide. Number of revolutions per minute, 43. Vacuum, 
24 inches. Pressure of steam 38 lbs. on the square inch. The engine, 
boiler, shafts, and wheels weighed 6 tons, and the boat and the engine 
complete, 14 tons. 

We started with her for Orleans on the 24th of March, 1834, when 
there was only 8 inches of water, and the novelty of this circumstance 
caused it to be remarked on by the various newspapers. She ran for 
some time, between Tours and Orleans, and when the boats that ran from 
Nantes to Angers were stopped for want of water, she was put upon the 
latter station, and very soon repaid the owners her cost. I was then com- 
missioned to build a boat, 125 feet long by 14 feet beam, but before she 
was laid down, the American consul came to us with the plan of a boat 
on quite a new system, and this is it: Four cones put base to base; two 
together, and 13 feet apart. They were 6 feet diameter in the middle, 
and 90 feet long, making, when together, 180 feet in length. The cabin, 
engine, boilers, etc., were built on a platform supported on the cones, and 
the paddle wheel, which was 14 feet diameter and 12 feet wide, was in 
the centre, between the cones. She had a pair of engines of 20 horse 
power each, but she disappointed their expectations as to speed, so they 
returned to my plan. I took the two engines and built two light boats 
for them, with der-ks fore and aft; otherwise, and in the strength of the 
iron, they resembled the first one. The deck planks were g of an inch 
thick; deck beams 2 inches xlh inches, and placed 2 feet apart, with two 
rows of light columns inside. The deck was covered with strono- canvas 
for it would not stand caulking. These boats were 125 feet lono- and 10 
feet broad, and drew 10 inches of water. I then thought I would try 
and make some use of the cones, as they were made of sheet iron; so I 
went to work and converted them into a' boat 140 feet long and 13 feet 
broad. I changed the system of the boilers in this boat, making a cylin- 
drical shell and a cylindrical flue through it; the shell 30 inches" and the 
flue 22 inches diameter, and 30 feet long. At the furnaces, it was 3 feet 

152 Civil Engineering. 

6 inches diameter. A steam chest on each 5 feet high. These boilers 
worked at 60 lbs. on the square inch, and the steam was expanded and 
condensed. This boat was partly built to oppose a boat, built and fitted 
with engines in France, which had non-condensing engines, working at 
75 lbs. pressure. She beat all our boats, but drew too much water for 
the summertime; however when our new boat started, she was full master 
of her, and finally ran her off the station. In 1837, I built another boat, 
146 feet long and 11 feet 6 inches broad, with a 55 horse engine, working 
at 68 lbs. pressure and condensing, and she ran 48 leagues in 11^ hours. 

One day, about this time, one of our men came and told me that there 
was a gentleman on board one of the boats, who could not speak French; 
so I went to see if he was an Englishman, and having spoken to him in 
English, he inquired for the builder of the light iron boats. On my telling 
him that I was the person, he informed me that he had been on the river 
Euphrates, and was then on his way home to England. That he had 
been talking to a person at the Hotel de France, about the light boats 
which they had been trying on the Euphrates, and that with all their light- 
ness, there was not enough water for them, and that the attempt was a fail- 
ure. That he had inquired what draught of water they were, and on 
being told, said, "Oh, we have one of your countrymen here, who builds 
us far lighter boats than that, and I should recommend you to pay him a 
visit." Well, I showed him all in my power, one boat drawing 8 inches 
and another 9 inches of water, and I expected after this, that the East 
India Company w T ould have had some boats built on the same system; but 
whether he reported on what he had seen, I do not know, but I never 
heard any more from him. 

I fear I have wearied your readers with this egotistical narrative, but 
I am no writer, and you have the facts as I have them noted down. 
That I may not encroach too much on your space, I will leave the remain- 
der of my yarn for your next number. 

Your obedient servant, 

A Practical Engixeer. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

On a Probable Means of Augmenting the Ascensive Power of Locomotives 
on the High Gradients of Railways. By Ellwood Morris, C. E. 

It is well known that numerous accurate experiments on friction have 
established the law, that within the limits of abrasion, the friction is as 
the insistent weight, and not as the surface of contact. 

These experiments, (hough they have formed the basis of many calcu- 
lations of the various frictions of railways, and have been very valuable in 
this department of mechanical science in establishing minimum results, do 
not meet the practical acquirements of railway motions, because, in those 
motions invariably, when maximum effects are to be produced, the limit 
of abrasion is always reached and passed. 

Of the friction of moving metals in contact, when abrading each other, 
we have no experiments whatever. Hence we have no means of calcu- 
lating beforehand, the bite of a locomotive slipping her wheels upon a 
rail, because then both wheels and rails abrade. 

On Railway Carrying Stock. 153 

We know that the maximum adhesion of engines upon dry rails, ex- 
ceeds all results of calculation based upon the ordinary laws of friction, 
and hence some have been inclined to doubt the accuracy of those laws, 
though they are undoubtedly true, within the limits taken by the initial 
experiments upon which they were founded. When engines slip their 
wheels on railways, both wheels and rails abrade, the law of friction 
changes, and we enter at once upon a new field, in which we have no 
exact results recorded, and of which we only know that the coefficient of 
friction is greatly increased. 

It is upon this meagre outline of facts, (which might be much extended 
if the authorities were at hand,) that the writer, from the observation of 
years in his professional avocations, has formed the opinion, that beyond 
the limits of abrasion, the law of friction, as applicable to brake blocks 
and the slip of wheels on rails, changes entirely, and that the bite or ad- 
hesion is in some degree proportionate to the surface of contact, as well 
as to the weight imposed. The writer believes this to be especially the 
case in the ascension of heavy gradients by locomotives, where the sand 
box is always used. In such cases, it is highly probable that a mere in- 
crease of the breadth of the rail, or surface gained, will augment very 
materially the bite or adhesion of the driving wheels, though the weight 
remains the same. 

The usual surface of contact of wheel and rail, has a breadth of only 
two inches, while the wheels themselves have a breadth of nearlyybwr 
inches. If then, beyond the limit of abrasion, the friction increases in the 
same ratio to the surface, (as the writer believes,) then upon high gra- 
dients, all we have to do is to lay down broad headed rails, conforming 
to the tire of the wheels, and thus increase at once the adhesion. 

This, of course, supposes engineers to have surplus steam power; and 
such is usually the case with modern locomotives, which in fact, as now 
in practice, always do, or ought to, arrive at the foot of a steep grade with 
a full head of steam; then the sand box freely used upon a four inch rail, 
it seems highly probable, will augment so much the bite of the wheels, as 
to render high gradients less formidable than they now are. 

To the above considerations, the writer respectfully invites the atten- 
tion of his professional brethren, in the hope that some of the companies 
they serve may at once put this important matter to the test, and lay a few 
hundred yards of rails, four inches broad, upon the high gradients of 
some railway doing a heavy freight business. A few months' use, and a 
few correct experiments, would settle this question definitively, and the. 
writer knows scarcely any other, of more moment to some railways. 

On Railway Carrying Stock. By Mr. W. A. Adams, of Birmingham* 

The object of the present paper is to discuss and analyse the various 
descriptions of Railway Carrying Stock, with the purpose of suggest- 
ing such improvements in the details of form and manufacture as will 
materially reduce the gross or dead weight of the vehicles, without affect- 
ing their efficiency or strength. 

* From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

154 Civil Engineering. 


This matter has been brought prominently under the writer's attention, 
from the fact, that upon leading lines of railway the first class carriages for 
the conveyance of 18 passengers have reached a gross weight of 5 tons, 
and wagons for the conveyance of a maximum load of 5 tons, have reached 
a gross weight of 4| tons. These, it is to be observed, are probably 
extreme cases, but being modern, they evidence the tendency to increase 
the weight of trailing stock. 

It is scarcely needful to remark, that if a locomotive engine is capable 
of conveying a train of 50 wagons weighing 200 tons and the load 200 
tons (which proportion will not be short of the truth, even without taking 
empties into account), a saving of one ton in the weight of each wagon 
will enable the engine to convey 50 tons additional of wagons and load, 
or equal to a saving of one-eighth in the cost of haulage. 

In the important matter of inland through coal traffic, the wagon ave- 
raging 3 tons 15 cwt. carries 5 tons of coal. But as the wagon of course 
returns empty for 5 tons of coal conveyed one mile, 7 tons 10 cwt. of 
wagon has been conveyed the same distance. 

In this instance the saving one ton weight in the construction of the 
wagon, would be equivalent to a total saving of nearly one-sixth in the 
cost of haulage; that is to say, if the present rates are remunerative, the 
prices may be reduced 16 per cent., inducing a much more extensive 
traffic, and better enabling railways to compete with water conveyance. 

Inland coals are mostly conveyed in wagons belonging to the collieries, 
or rented to the collieries by private individuals. In either case, the ton- 
nage or mileage charges on the railways being irrespective of the weight 
of the wagon, the object of the wagon owner is to produce such wagons 
as will be most durable with the smallest amount of first cost. The weights 
of colliery wagons have been gradually increasing, each new lot being 
made (as was recently observed by the manager of an extensive inland 
colliery) of such strength and weight, that in the event of a collision, they 
may break their neighbors, and remain uninjured themselves. 

Engine and carriage superintendence are generally distinct depart- 
ments. The carriage superintendent aims at the utmost economy of main- 
tenance in his department, and produces carriages and wagons, which, 
though very lasting and very serviceable, are meanwhile greatly increas- 
ing the expenditure of the locomotive department. It would appear that 
in no case has the interest of the parties directly concerned been to de- 
crease the weight of the vehicles. 

The heavy trains handed over to the locomotive department to haul, 
induced the construction of more powerful and weightier engines, until 
the maximum was quickly reached, and checked by the sufferings of the 
permanent way. 

It is to be observed, that the writer has no desire to carry the question 
of light vehicles to any Utopian extent, but simply to calmly study and 
elucidate, by experience and experiment, the practical means of reducing 
the weights of vehicles within proper bounds. 

At the period of the commencement of railways, passengers were most- 
ly conveyed by four-horse coaches, li^ht goods by vans, and heavy goods 
by water. It is the intention of the writer of this paper to confine the in- 
quiry to wheel vehicles. 

On Railway Carrying Stock. 


The great distinction between road and railway vehicles is, that railway 
vehicles have to sustain longitudinal strains in the direction of the buffing, 
as well as lateral and perpendicular blows. 

The four-horse coach weighing 19 cwt., conveyed 18 persons with lug- 
gage, weighing in all 1 ton 7 cwt., at a rate of 10 miles per hour. 

The four-horse Brighton van, weighing 1 ton 11 cwt., conveyed 6 tons 
of goods at a rate of 4 miles per hour. 

Every pound was carefully saved in weight of construction of the above 
vehicles. The timber was carefully selected English ash; not that ash was 
the most lasting and durable, but that for strength and toughness, it was 
unequalled in lightness, though short in its period of duration. 

The axles and the iron-work were wholly made of the best marks of 
scrap iron. Skilled and costly labor of a high class was employed in the 
forging and fitting of the iron-work and the construction of the wood- work. 
In all cases where extreme strength was required, the timber was care- 
fully plated with iron; obtaining the utmost strength with the smallest 
amount of material. 

Builders competed, not so much in price, but as artists, to produce, by 
proportion of parts and materials, the utmost result with the least weight. 
The gradients were bad, the roads imperfect, the motive power limited. 
The wear and tear of the carriage was a secondary consideration to the 
cost of hauling power. The vehicles were probably as near perfection as 
man's ingenuity could produce them. 

Simultaneous with the four-horse coach and van, was the conveyance 
of coals upon tramways w r ith horse-power. 

The writer will confine his observations to that district with which he 
is practically acquainted, that of Monmouthshire. The act for the making 
of the Sirhowy and the Monmouthshire tramways / a total length, exclu- 
sive of branches, of 26 miles from the mines and iron works to the ship- 
ping port of Newport, was obtained in the 42d of George 3d, and conse- 
quently 48 years since, and that tramway has been worked until within 
the last twelve months by horse power. 

Originally it was a tramway with fish-bellied cast-iron plates laid and 
jointed upon stone blocks, with six feet bearings. These have gradually 
given place to rolled plates of malleable iron, weighing about 80 lbs. to 
the yard, and laid in chairs upon cross wood sleepers with 2 feet 8 inch 

Fig. l. 

Fig. 1 represents the class of wagon, or as it is locally termed, tram, 
used upon this tramway. The gross weight was 16 cwt., and it carried 3 

156 Civil Engineering. 

tons of coal at a rate of three miles per hour, exclusive of the time con- 
sumed at the various public houses by the tramway side. 

The breaking or skidding down the inclines was effected in the most 
complete manner by means of a slipper or shoe, similar to that of a stage- 
coach, and the stopping of the train by thrusting a bar of wood through 
the spokes of the wheel, or, as it is locally termed, spragging the wheel. 
The unloading was effected by means of a gallows and crab, the tram be- 
ing raised at one end, and the coals discharged by means of the swinging 
tail board at the other end. 

It will be observed that no provision is made for buffing, but that the 
train is articulated by means of the hitching a shown in the drawing. The 
wheels ran loose upon the axles, and were in most instances dished in the 
manner of a common road wheel, thereby illustrating the first advance 
from a common road vehicle. 

The tramway is mostly an incline from the mines to the port. Six 
horses brought down 60 tons of coals and 16 tons of trams. The same 
power was required to take up the empty trams. Dead weight in the 
trams was consequently of vital importance. 

This tramway is now being worked with locomotive power and per- 
manent wagons; the Tramway Company finding power, and the freight- 
ers wagons. The same care which influenced the private hauler, and 
caused him to equalize his upward to his downward load, does not now 
influence the freighter, and has been lost sight of by the company. In the 
eye of the freighter, the wagon which is strongest and heaviest is the best, 
and the consequence is, that wagons weighing three tons, are conveying 
but five tons of load. 

The ratio of upward load was in the one case 21 per cent., and in the 
latter 37 per cent., as compared with the downward. 

The weight of wagon conveyed up hill was in the one case 27 per cent., 
and in the latter 60 per cent., as compared with the coals brought down. 

In place of a perfect horse tram-road, heavy engines are being ham- 
mered, and are hammering to pieces a bad road, with bad gradients and 
extremely bad curves. This is wholly true, but fortunately an extreme 
case; neverljieless, it is questionable whether many lines are not also suf- 
fering in a lesser degree from the incubus of dead weight. 

The Huntingdon and St. Ives's branch of the East Anglian railway, 4f 
miles in length, is at the present time worked by a horse carriage. This 
carriage is a composite carriage consisting of three compartments, and 
carrying 60 passengers in all, inside and out. 

It is to be observed that the carriage is made from an ordinary compo- 
site, the under frame being completely taken away, and wheels, guards, 
and springs of the lightest construction substituted. The total w T eight is 3 
tons, but the weight would not exceed 2 tons, if the carriage had been 
originally built for the present purpose. The horse is attached by an out- 
rigger, to which the traces are hooked, and he travels by the side of the 
carriage, with his head tied up to the carriage to prevent him from turn- 
ing round. A break is applied to the wheels. 

The writer has instanced this carriage to illustrate, that when horse 
power is brought into use, the weight of vehicle is at once considered; 
and also that the vehicle being used singly, does not require strength to 

On Railway Carrying Stock. 


resist longitudinal buffing. The cost of working this carriage is six pence 
per mile, including horse and driver, and the guard, who is also ticket 

The pace is ten miles per hour, and it would appear that this applica- 
tion meets all the requirements of the limited traffic of a short branch. 

Rapid strides were made by engineers in perfecting the way and the 
locomotive. The facts relative to the permanent way have been discussed 
and appreciated, and the details greatly perfected. Locomotives have 
been improved, the consumption of fuel brought probably nearly to the 
minimum; the details have been understood, discussed, and experiment- 
ed upon by men of high talent and experience. 




Fig 3. 

But far differently with the matter of the carrying stock. The construc- 
tion of the carriage and the wagon was in the commencement left wholly 
to men of long practice in carnage building for the common road, but 
not experienced in mechanical engineering. 

Those patterns originally set, have been copied and re-copied in aw 
almost servile manner. When carriages and wagons have failed in their 
parts, the sole remedy has been increase of strength by increasing the 
weight and quantity of material. Axles have increased from 3 inches dia- 
meter to 4 inches; tires from 4£ x 1^ inches to 5xl£ inches, and so 

Voi. XXL— Third Sehies.— No. 3.— Mahcfi, 1851. 14 

158 Civil Engineering. 

Fig. 2 illustrates the original London and Birmingham, and Grand 
Junction first class carriages, with three compartments, carrying eighteen 

Dead weight 3^ tons. 

Cubical contents 504 feet. 

Fig. 3 illustrates the modern first class carriage, with 3 compartments, 
carrying 18 passengers. 

Dead weight 5 tons. 

Cubical contents 807 feet. 

The dead weight of wagon, per ton of load, for the upward and down- 
ward journey of the — 

Old Monmouthshire train, h ton. 

New Monmouthshire wagon, II ton. 

Derbyshire and Leicestershire coal wagon, 1^ ton. 

The writer presumes that it will be at once admitted that reducing the 
dead weight of railway vehicles is extremely desirable, whilst such reduc- 
tion of weight is effected with due regard to efficiency and strength to 
resist the longitudinal strain in buffing. Also, that reduction in first cost 
is not the sole object to be attained, but to produce such vehicles as shall 
be, all points considered, the most economical in first cost, in maintenance, 
and especially in traction; but, at the same time, it does not follow that 
reducing the dead weight and improving the quality of the materials shall 
add materially, if any, to the cost. 

Should it be approved by the Institution, the subject of a second paper 
will be to analyze and compare the whole of the modern trailing stock 
with that of an earlier period, and thereby glean such information as will 
enable the writer to prepare and lay before the Institution, in a future pa- 
per, such improvements in the form and manufacture of railway vehicles 
as may lead to the result pointed out at the commencement. 

It is proposed to try all necessary experiments as to the relative strength 
of wood and iron, and the combination thereof, in order to obtain the ne- 
cessary information as to the most eligible and economical means of at- 
taining the greatest strength with the least weight. 

An Account of the Chimney of the Edinburgh Gas Works, with Observations 
on the Principles of its Strength and Stability. By Geo. Buchanan, 
Esq., F. R. S. E., Civil Engineer* 

(Paper read at the Royal Scottish Society of Arts.) 

In this paper, Mr. Buchanan concluded with some observations on the 
effects of the draft in the chimney, a subject of great importance in regard 
to chimnies generally for large furnaces, where enormous quantities of 
air are continually passing in the act of combustion. This had been esti- 
mated by the eminent chemist, Professor Thomson, of Glasgow, at 150 
cubic feet per minute for every pound of coal consumed, and 50 more 
for waste — in all 200. Hence in the boilers of many steam-vessels, for 
example, consuming one ton per hour, 7400 cubic feet of air per minute 
must pass up their narrow funnels, and being limited also in height, must 
be raised to a high temperature, and this, as at present constructed, by 
* From the London Architect, for December, 1850. 

On the Chimney of the Edinburgh Gas Works. 159 

a great sacrifice of fuel. In the Gas Works, the 68 furnaces consume 34 
tons in 24 hours, requiring a current of air at the rate of 10,000 feet per 
minute, which the old chimnies were incapable of drawing. Mr. Buchanan 
then stated the principles on which the power of draft must be calculated, 
referring to the article Furnace in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, last edi- 
tion, where he had occasion to explain the subject. The power of the 
draft was directly proportional to the height of the chimney, and the velo- 
city with which the external air rushes in to supply the draft was propor- 
tional to the square root of the height of the chimney. The internal heat, 
however, was the grand moving power, expanding the air within the 
chimney, and giving it a buoyant or ascensional power. With 488 degrees 
of temperature, the celebrated chemists, Petit and Dalong, and most 
accurate observers, had found that air expands into double its volume. 
With this temperature, therefore, within the chimney, the velocity with 
which the external air was capable of entering at the bottom of the chimney, 
or into the furnaces or flues, would be proportional to the square root of 
half the height of the chimney, and expressed numerically in feet per 
second, would be equal to six times the square root of half the height, or 

V=6 I—, V being the velocity in feet per second, and H the height of 

Ihe chimney. This forms an easy rule for this particular temperature, and 
if we apply to it in the present case, taking the height of the chimney from 
the entrance flue at 330 feet, would give a velocity of about 50 feet per 
second, or 34 miles an hour, equal in the atmosphere to a very violent 
gale of wind. Taking the smallest area of the chimney, where it is 11 
feet 4 in. in diameter, at 100 square feet, this with such a power of draft 
would be capable of discharging 30,000 cubic feet per minute, which is 
amply sufficient for the present works and any extensions. The actual 
results have proved very satisfactory. Not only is there a draft in the 
furnaces, whereby they are wrought most effectually and with great econo- 
my of fuel, but by making one or more openings at the bottom of the 
chimney, a powerful blast of air sets in from all directions, carrying off 
vapors and all impurities, and producing a cool atmosphere in every 
part. On measuring the power of draft with a water pressure gauge, he 
found it drew up a column 3.^ inches high, there being a good deal of 
wind at the time. The blast of air at the mouth of the opening, it is curious 
to observe, drawing the hand powerfully in, and a square board covering 
the opening it was difficult to withdraw, exerting a pressure of 15 lbs. on 
the square foot. High winds have a sensible effect on the draft, some- 
times raising the water gauge to a height of 6 or 7 inches. A pressure of 
2.V inches, which it would be in calm weather, is very nearly equal to a 
column of air half the height of the chimney, and this agrees very well 
With the above calculation, as the interior temperature would not exceed 
480 or 500 degrees. As a general rule for calculating the power of the 
draft at any temperature, the following would be found simple and agree- 
able to the practical results: V=6 [— _ , n being the number of de- 

1 \488 + ?i ° 

grees of temperature. 
Mr. Buchanan then gave a detail of the experiments formerly alluded 

160 Civil Engineering. 

to, made upon the strength of the bricks for the chimney in 14 specimens 
of different qualities and compositions. By far the strongest was the 
composition of fire-clay and iron-stone, which bore, making every 
allowance, from 200 to 350 tons on the square foot; while the common 
quality did not exceed from 60 to 120 tons. The Hailes stone bore up- 
wards of 450 tons, greatly more than the result found by the experiments 
already shown to the Society, but which, being on small specimens, 1 inch 
cube, while the other was 4 inches cube, the effect might partly be due 
to this circumstance, together with the difference of quality in the speci- 

A Detailed Description of the above Chimney. By M. Taylor, Esq., 
Engineer for the Edinburgh Gas Works. 

In this paper Mr. Taylor gave a minute detail of the dimensions and 
structure of every part of the work. The foundation was on hard shale 
or clay; the masonry 40 feet 6 inches square at the bottom, 12 feet below 
the surface of the ground; 32 feet 6 inches at the surface of the 
ground; and brought up by steps in hard foundation courses of Craigleith 
stone, dressed and square jointed. Mason-work of the most substantial 
description, with four eyes for connecting the main flues to the stalk. 
Square pedestal 65 feet high from surface of ground to top of base of 
brick shaft; 30 feet 10 inches square at base course; 30 feet square 
above base, and 27 feet 9 inches under moulding of top. Body of 
pedestal of neatly covered rubble-work of the strongest kind, the stones 
chiefly from Hailes Quarry of the best rock. The cope mouldings 
and base of brick shaft of Craigleith. Within the pedestal, and rising 
20 feet above it, is an inner chimney or brick shaft standing quite 
detached, having a space from IS inches to 2 feet clear in every part; 
this space covered over at the top to keep out soot deposit, but yet left 
free of the outer pedestal and chimney. The inner chimney is 90 feet 
high, 13 feet diameter inside, carried up at four different thicknesses, be- 
ginning at 3} 2 bricks thick, and ending at 2 bricks, including a lining of 
lire-brick, carried up the whole way at (wo thicknesses — 20 feet at 10 
inches thick, and 70 feet at 5 inches. The brick work of the best well- 
burnt circular stock-brick, with a course of headers in reeled order for 
every four courses of stretchers. The main brick shaft is 264 feet high 
above the stone pedestal; making, with the pedestal, 65 feet, and founda- 
tion 12 feet 6 inches — in all, 341 feet 6 inches. The shaft is 26 feet 3 
inches diameter at bottom externally, tapers to 13 feet 10 inches at the 
height of 243 feet, at the first belt under coping 11 feet 10 inches below 
the top. The shaft is carried up at five different thicknesses, beginning 
at 35 inches, or 3^ bricks, for 35 feet up, and ending with 15 inches, or 
l.j bricks, for 58 feet at the top, all built with hard circular composition 
brick, referred to in the experiments on the strength of bricks. Brick- 
work put together in the strongest manner with headers, as already de- 
scribed, and best band all laid in the best lime from Burdiehouse, with 
sharp sand, sifted and made up in the mill. The beds are kept as thin 
as possible, and neatly pointed-in with the edge of the trowel. All the 
vertical joints inside of wall, grouted up with thin lime. As a farther 
security, the shaft is bound with six malleable iron hoops, at intervals of 

Canal Commissioners' Annual Report. 161 

35 feet up, built into the brick-work, one brick on bed from the outside, 
and kept a half inch clear all round off the outside lining of brick- work, 
so as to allow the hoops to expand with heat without injury to the work. 
They are all 3 inches broad; the under three 1 inch thick, the upper f-mch 
each, made in three lengths, clamped together and made fast with three 
f-inch or f-inch rivets on each side. The projecting cope at the top is of 
cast iron, 19 feet 6 inches diameter over all, and in sixteen pieces about 
J-inch thick, screwed together with bolts through theflanches. This cope 
being all fitted and bound together in a mass on the top of the stalk, the 
brick-work was continued up, and finished with a cope, or plate of cast 
iron, composed of eight pieces f-inch thick, and about 2| feet broad, with 
a round belt going 9 inches down on the brick-work, and" forming a strong 
hoop round it. The chimney is furnished with an endless chain goinc 
up the inside of the main shaft, giving the means of ascending at any 
time to the top. The electric conductor stands 6 feet above the top plate, 
f-inch round copper made fast to stone and brick- work, with 7f in. copper 
holdfasts let 4 inches into the masonry or brick- work, with a head on the 
inside and an eye on the outside to receive the rod as it was carried up. 
By these holdfasts an ascent can easily be made to the top by a small 
tackle suspended to the holdfasts. The conductor is metallically con- 
nected to all the iron-work on the stalk — the plate on the top, projecting 
cope, malleable-iron hoops, bolts on the top of the stone pedestal, and 
also the ascending chain. The rod descends into a well about 1 feet from 
the foundation, and is immersed about 8 feet deep in water, and the end 
turned up 2 feet in a horizontal direction, and flattened. 

Extract from the Annual Report of the Board of Canal Commissioners of 
the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, for the year ending Nov. 30, 1S50. 

The gross receipts on all the lines of canal and railroad belonging to 
the Commonwealth, for the year ending the 30th of November, 1850, 
amounted to $1,768,209-46, and the expenditures for ordinary repairs and 
breaches, including the cost of the temporary means of maintaining the 
passage for boats across the Susquehanna river at Clark's ferry, to $857,228, 
showing an excess of receipts over expenditures of the sum of $910,981*46. 
The net receipts of 1850 exceed those of 1849 by $3b', 204-61. 

The past fiscal yearhas been remarkable for the number of high freshets 
with which the several lines of canal yielding the largest portion of revenue 
have been visited. A succession of breaches occurred from the high 
waters in July, August, and September, by which the navigation of the 
main line, at its eastern terminus, and of the Susquehanna, West Branch, 
North Branch, and Delaware Divisions, was materially impeded by the 
time necessarily occupied in making extensive repairs. 

To add to these calamities, on the morning of the 11th September 
the towing path and road bridge over the Susquehanna river, at Clark's 
ferry, was fired by an incendiary, and the superstructure totally destroyed, 
thus rendering it incumbent on the Board to fit up, at a heavy expense, a 
steam towing boat, for the purpose of maintaining, as far as practicable, 
the speedy transit of boats at that point. These combined causes, as a 


Civil Engineering. 

matter of course, affected the revenues to a considerable extent, and added 
largely to the expenditures. The cost of repairs by floods, and the fitting 
up the steamboat, irrespective of the loss of the superstructure of the bridge 
at Clark's ferry, amounted to $66,573-44. 

The following statement exhibits a more detailed account of the receipts 
and expenditures than is contained in the foregoing abstract: 

Receipts for all purposes. 
Columbia Railroad. 






Schuylkill viaduct, 


Total Columbia Railroad, 

Allegheny Portage Railroad. 

Total Portage Railroad, 

Main Line of Canal. 
Columbia, including outlet lock, 
Johnstown, . 

Portsmouth outlet lock, 
Swatara bridge, . 
Duncan's Island bridge, 
Juniata aqueduct, 
Freeport aqueduct, 

Total Main Line Canal, . 

Delaware Division. 

New Hope, 

outlet lock. 



















• 146,137-08 










Total Delaware Division, 
Susquehanna, North and West Branch. 












Total Susquehanna, North and West Branch Divisions, 193,150-19 

Total gross receipts on all the lines, . $1,768,209-46 

Canal Commissioners? Annual Report. 163 


For maintaining motive power on the Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad, including re- 
pairs and management of trucks, and purchase of one locomotive engine from motive 
power fund, . . . $201,810-83 

For the purchase of three new engines from special appropria- 
tion per Act of 10th April, 1849, . 24,600-00 

For repairs of Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad, . 71,466-39 

For collectors, weigh-masters, inspectors, and incidental ex- 
penses of their oflices, . . . 12,466-98 

For maintaining motive power on the Allegheny Portage Rail- 
road, including the repairs and management of State trucks, 
the purchase of passenger cars, and two new locomotive 
engines, . . . $182,941-24 

For ordinary repairs on Allegheny Portage Railroad, 43,330-03 

For extraordinary repairs of inclined planes, per Act of 10th 

May, 1850, . . . 18,579-94 

For collectors, weigh-masters, inspectors, &c, . 2,992-98 


For ordinary repairs on main line of canal, , $101,242-18 

For breaches on main line, . . 16,856-53 

For collectors, weigh-masters, inspectors, &c, . 16,553-06 

For lock tenders, . . . 27,249-00 

For repairs on Delaware Division, . $32,066-85 

For breaches on " . . 19,182-55 

For collectors, weigh-masters, inspectors, &c, . 4,059-82 

For lock keepers, . , . 5,525-00 

For repairs on Susquehanna Division, . $9,182-00 

For breaches on " . . 4,000-00 

For repairs on West Branch Division, . 12,548-72 

For breaches on " . . 12,778-67 

For repairs on North Branch Division, . 12,000-00 

For breaches on " . , 13,755-69 

For collectors, weigh-masters, inspectors, &c, . 6,150-56 

For lock keepers, . . . 5,889-00 





Total expenses, . . $857,228-00 

Gross receipts, . . 1,768,209-46 

Net receipts over expenses, . $910 981-46 

Adding to the expenditures the pay of the Canal Commissioners, secre- 
tary, messenger, and the incidental expenses of their office, amounting to 
$5300, the actual net receipts for the year 1850 are $905,081-46, being 
an increase over the net receipts for 1849, of $30,90-1-61. 

The officers have been specially instructed to include in their reports 
the entire cost of repairs, whether paid or unpaid, so as (o present to the 
Legislature a correct statement of the actual cost of the public works for 
each financial year. It is believed that this direction has been faithfully 
observed. These reports form the basis of the preceding abstract from 
which it will be seen that the expenditures for all purposes, exclusive of 
farm bridges, amounted to $862,528. In this statement, however is in- 
cluded the extraordinary repairs to the inclined planes on the Allegheny 
Portage Railroad, the purchase of six new locomotive engines, and the 
sum of $66,573-44, for repair of damages by Hoods and fire. 

164 Civil Engineering. 

The report of the Superintendent of motive power, and Supervisor of 
repairs on the Philadelphia and Columbia road, exhibits a very compre- 
hensive view of the condition and operation of that part of the improve- 
ments. His report on the motive power departments presents the follow- 
ing statement: 

The number of cars passed over the road in 1850, amounted to 140,394, 
exceeding the number passed in 1849, by 19,562. 

The freight passed over the road amounted to 265,113 tons, being an 
increase over the last year of 45,632 tons. 

The number of miles traveled by passengers was S,060,278, equal to 
98,296 through passengers, being an excess of through passengers over 

The number of trips run by locomotives was 8074, or 630,084 miles, 
being an increase of 604 trips, or 47,112 miles over the preceding year. 

General Rules for Proportioning the Length of Boilers for Stationary 


Rule 1. — A plain cylindrical boiler, without any inside flue tube, and 
huno- on what is sometimes called the "oven plan," that is, with a direct 
draft passing from the fire-place directly under the bottom of the boiler 
to the vent or chimney, and without return flues of any kind, need not 
exceed in length six times its diameter; and it ought not to exceed six 
times the square root of the area of the fire grate in feet if worked with 
Lancashire, Derbyshire, or Yorkshire coal, which is equivalent to six 
times the square root of the nominal horse power of the engine in feet. 
And if worked with the best Newcastle coal, the boiler need not be more 
than about eight diameters long, and ought not to exceed eight times the 
square root of the area of the fire grate in feet, which is equivalent to 
ei^ht times the square root of three-fourths of the nominal horse power of 
the engine in feet; and in any case it never ought to exceed six feet in 

diameter. . . . 

R ULE 2. A boiler without any inside flue tube, and set up in the 

common way, with external brick flues and a wheel draft, need not be 
more than nbout. four diameters long, and ought not to exceed in length 
four times the square root of the area of the fire grate in feet for Lanca- 
shire coal. If worked with Newcastle coal, it ought not to be more than 
about five diameters long, and need not exceed in length five times the 
square root of the area of the fire grate in feet; and in either case, whether 
a wagon or cylindrical boiler, it never ought to be more than six, nor less 
than four feet in diameter. 

r ule 3. If a boiler contains one or more inside flue tubes, passing 

quite through it, and is to be set up with a split draft, it need not be more 
than about three and a half diameters long, and ought not to be longer 
than three and a half times the square root of the area of the fire grate in feet 
for Lancashire coal; and if worked with Newcastle coal, it need not be 
more than about four and a half diameters long, and ought not to exceed 
•From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

General Rules for Proportioning the Length of Boilers. 165 

four and a half times the square root of the area of the fire grate in feet; 
and never be less than five feet in diameter. 

Rule 4. — When a boiler contains one or more internal flue tubes, with 
an inside uptake or connexion with the boiler bottom, as in Boulton and 
Watt's, or as in the marine "tubular," and other multiflue boilers, the 
length of the boiler need not be more than about three times its diameter 
with Lancashire coal, and ought not to exceed in length three times the 
square root of the area of the fire grate in feet; but with Newcastle coal 
its length in feet may be equal to four times the square root of the area 
of the grate, and need not be more than about four times the diameter of 
the boiler. 

Rule 5. — Cornish boilers and Butterly boilers, set up in the best man- 
ner, with split draft, and using Lancashire coal, need not be more than 
about three and a half and four diameters long respectively; and if using 
the best coal, they ought not to be more than five and a half and six 
diameters long. 

Boilers whose dimensions are proportioned within the limits stated in 
the above practical rules, more especially those indicated by the three 
last, are mostly the best to be found of each kind in the manufacturing 
and midland counties. 

The manner of hanging boilers, to which the first rule relates, is yet 
generally confined to some country places where inferior workmanship 
only can easily be obtained, and where the space occupied by the greater 
length of the boiler is not of much value; consequently the data for this 
rule have not perhaps been quite so exactly determined as may be. 
There are reasons for supposing that the direct draft cylinder boiler may 
be made considerably shorter than the proportion of six to one, as stated 
in Rule 1, if the fire could be equally well arranged as in the wagon 
boiler, the concave bottom of which is admirably adapted to this pur- 
pose, because the middle of the grate, where the heat is the most intense, 
is at the greatest distance below the boiler bottom, while the latter gradu- 
ally approaches nearer to the grate at the sides of the furnace, and thus 
tends to equalize the action of the fire against the boiler. The bottom of the 
cylindrical boiler being convex downwards, the action of the fire is of 
course exactly the reverse of the above. To say nothing of the injury 
done to the boiler plates on this account, there requires to be a greater 
average distance between the grate and the boiler bottom; this, again, 
requires a greater quantity of coal in the furnace, which impedes the draft, 
and renders stoking necessary, thus causing the flame to be occasionally 
extended in length; and although such undue length of flame cannot be 
kept up continuously with any degree of economy, it has given rise to a 
natural, though unfounded, prejudice against this mode of setting a boiler, 
often expressed in the observation that '•'■all the heat goes vj> the chimney." 
Erroneous as the idea is that gives rise to this very common remark, it 
is not a little strengthened by the fact that the temperature of the chimney 
is always very much greater with a direct draft than it is where winding 
brick flues are used, which may be considered only as a portion of the 
chimney lying horizontally, the superfluous heat in which is doing no 
good, and is really "waste heat," from the great inconvenience and 
trouble it occasions; whereas, when this waste heat is allowed to go freely 

166 Civil Engineering. 

up the vertical shaft of the chimney, it really becomes of great use in 
increasing the ascensional force of the current; thus improving the draft, 
and enabling the boiler to be worked generally with the damper nearly 
closed, as all steam engine boilers ought to be worked. 

Boilers on the Oven Plan Liable to Explosion from Surcharged Steam.* 

When a boiler is set up or "hung" with a direct draft, as described in 
Rule 1, it is very commonly, but erroneously, said to be on the "oven 
plan" which designation ought to be confined to those only where the 
flame is caused to pass wholly or partially over the top of the boiler, 
although they have generally a direct draft also. The use of such plans, 
however, cannot be too much reprehended as pregnant with danger, from 
surcharging the steam with heat, and thereby becoming liable to explosion. 
Few, however, if any, are now set up in that way; but I cannot help think- 
ing that some of the otherwise unaccounted for explosions which have 
occurred of late years have been owing to a similar cause. 

Now, supposing this over-heating of the steam and the top of the boiler 
to occur from either of the above causes, while the engine is at work, it 
is not perhaps likely that anything particular will be observed to ensue, 
unless, probably, the burning of the clothing or other covering of the 
boiler. But let us examine the matter when the engine has been stand- 
ing for some time, or when just about to start after the first getting up of 
the steam, and we shall find a very different state of things, the conse- 
quences of which, if only leading to the slightest probability of resulting 
in an explosion, are too serious to be passed over without great considera- 

We may suppose, then, that the steam chamber has become filled with 
over-heated or surcharged steam from any cause whatever, whilst the top 
of the boiler is also in the condition already described, that is, exposed 
to a temperature of, say from 350° to 400°; which supposition is quite 
consistent with the fact that the great bulk of the water in the boiler may 
be at the same time considerably below the common boiling point. And 
although this last assumed fact is, perhaps, only of rare occurrence in 
boilers which have their fires underneath them, it cannot be too widely 
known, that in all stationary boilers which have internal furnaces, it is not 
only of frequent occurrence, but it is a common observation of most 
practical engineers and workmen, that at the first getting up of the steam 
from cold water in a boiler of this description, with the safety valve and 
all other outlets of the boiler closed, the water at the lower part of the 
boiler is often quite cold, whilst there is a pressure in the boiler of 10 or 
20 lbs. on the square inch. 

As my object in thus tracing the proximate causes concerned in pro- 
ducing the dangerous consequences that may ensue, is for the purpose 
of suggesting the means of prevention, it will be here useful to observe, 
that whatever may be the pressure of the steam due to the actual evapora- 
tion at this stage of the process, it will be nearly doubled by the heat of 
the steam chamber, supposing the latter to have arrived at about 400°, 

*From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

Boilers Liable to Explosion from Surcharged Steam. 167 

which is still under the temperature that would leave any permanent 
traces of its existence on the metal, the lowest temperature that gives the 
first discoloration to iron (a straw color) being about 430°. Now, ex- 
cepting by the thermometer, there is only one other means of giving the 
fireman any ready indication or suspicion of there being any thing wrong 
about the boiler; and rough and uncertain as that indication is, it is always 
sufficient to create alarm, and induce him to take some instant precaution- 
ary step; and whether that step t be properly or improperly taken, will make 
all the difference between hastening and preventing the catastrophe of 
blowing up the boiler. The indication I am alluding to may be thus 
described : — whenever a fireman finds that, on getting up the steam pre- 
vious to starting an engine, more particularly after a boiler has been at 
rest, and refilled with cold water, that the pressure rises to a certain height 
in about half the time that has usually been the case previously; or if, after 
firing a certain time, and consulting his steam gauge, he finds that the 
steam has run up to 10 or 20 lbs. pressure, instead of 5 or 10 lbs., as he 
expected, in the same time, and if the man has been accustomed to the 
same boiler, and is assured there are no unusual circumstances, of draft or 
otherwise, to account for the difference, then he may be almost certain 
that there is surcharged steam in the boiler. 

Now, an idle or a careless stoker might not perhaps notice the circum- 
stance just described, so long as the required pressure is not reached, 
which the safety valve is loaded to blow off* at; which is the case no doubt 
very frequently, and the circumstance is thus passed over without danger, 
or the suspicion of danger. But what is the step that a careful, and still 
more, a timid, man would be likely to take at such a time? In all proba- 
bility, if the means were at hand, he would either "feel" or lift the safety 
valve; and what is the consequence that would be most likely to follow ? 
In the case we have supposed, it certainly would not be safety, but dan- 
ger, and very possibly immediate destruction; for when a safety valve of 
any considerable area is thrown suddenly wide open, there is always a 
sudden rush of water, or rather water and steam mixed, to the opening. 
This is well known to occur universally under such circumstances, and I 
have more than once seen it purposely exhibited by foolhardy engineers, 
by way of illustrating the nature of priming, as priming in fact it is, at 
the safety valve instead of into the cylinder. 

We need not, however, suppose that this is exactly the course taken in 
the case under consideration; for a very careful man would perhaps only 
ease the safety valve gently on its seat; and if it was in a cotton mill or 
other factory requiring to be heated by steam, the almost certain course 
he would take would be to let the steam into the pipes for that purpose; 
and whether he opens the communication suddenly or slowly, the effect 
produced is, that the surface of the water is simultaneously relieved from 
a portion of the pressure, and in consequence of being so relieved, the 
water immediately commences boiling, not so violently perhaps on the 
instant, but sufficiently so to change it from its hitherto quiescent condi- 
tion to a state of active circulation at least, if not of actual ebullition at 
the surface. Now this, or any other disturbance of the surface of the water, 
starting the engine for instance, will rapidly supply the surcharged steam 
with its full complement of water, that being all that is wanted to cause 

168 Civil Engineering. 

the pressure to mount up suddenly from 20 to 200 or 300 lbs., perhaps 
in a few seconds, or to such pressure as is due to the final temperature of 
the steam when fully saturated with water, the dry surcharge or desiccated 
steam, as it may be called, suddenly becoming ordinary steam of some- 
what less temperature, but enormously increased in density and pressure, 
with what effect on the boiler of course depends entirely upon the strain 
it is capable of bearing without rupture. 

Supposing the iron to have arrived at about 400° Fahr., full saturated 
steam in contact with it will assume a pressure of about 215 lbs. per 
square inch above the atmosphere, a pressure quite equal to account for 
many of the disastrous explosions we have on record. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Notes on the U. S. War Steamer "Spitfire." By Chief Engineer B. F. 


The "Spitfire" was originally built for the Mexican government, but 
at the commencement of our late war with Mexico she was still in the 
hands of the builders, from whom she was purchased by the United States 
and sent upon the Mexican Gulf coast, where she was exceedingly service- 
able in expeditions against the interior; her small size and light draft 
of water allowing her to cross the bars and ascend the rivers, while her 
battery was sufficiently heavy to be very effective in the bombardment of 
the towns. Throughout the whole war she proved a very useful and 
efficient war steamer for the peculiar river and town warfare she was 
engaged in. A brief record of her dimensions, power, speed, &c, will 
be valuable, as it is only such class steamers that can be rendered truly 
available either for attack or defence on the Mexican Gulf coast, or the 
southern United States coast. Our large war steam frigates, the "Missis- 
sippi" and "Princeton," which were also on the coast of Mexico during 
the war, though invaluable for towing and dispatch vessels, were useless 
as war steamers from their great draft of water, viz : 19 feet, which pre- 
vented them from ever approaching the sandy shores of the Gulf; and as 
the Mexicans possessed no marine, our large ships of war were com- 
pletely useless from the want of objects on which to use their batteries. 

Hull. — The "Spitfire" was 118 feet long on deck, 22^ feet extreme 
beam, % feet depth of hold, and 241 tons burthen. Mean draft of 
water, 7f feet. 

Battery. — One eight inch gun, (68-pounder,) mounted forward on a 
pivot, and two 32-pounder broadside guns aft. 

Engine. — One half beam engine (Lighthall's patent,) cylinder lying 
horizontally over the keelson. Diameter of cylinder 36 inches, stroke of 
piston 6 feet. The main cranks, however, were only 2^ feet between cen- 
tres, the connecting rod being attached nearer to the centre of motion of 
the beam than the piston rod. The engine had a piston valve 18 inches 
diameter, packed by rings set out with screws. This valve was of the 
length of the cylinder, and had no lap. The steam was worked expan- 
sively by a separate slide cut-off, situated on the opposite side of the 
cylinder, and cutting off at a little beyond half stroke. The capacity of 

Mies on the U. S. War Steamer "Spitfire." 169 

the steam space between the cut-off valve and the steam ports of the 
cylinder was one-seventh the capacity of the cylinder. The loss of effect 
from this cause was considerable : had the steam been cut off at the noz- 
zles of the cylinder at half stroke, the labor performed by the steam after 
expansion could be represented by 0-69, the labor performed before ex- 
pansion being taken as 1-00; if the steam, however, be now cut off at such 
a distance from the nozzle as to leave one-seventh the space displacement 
of the piston between the cut-off and nozzle, the cut-off valve closing at 
the same point as before, the labor performed after expansion will be 
represented by 0-81; the labor performed before expansion being taken as 
l'OO. But the quantities of steam expended in the two cases will be as 
1-00 to 1-29, while the effects are only as 1-69 to 1-81, or as 1-00 to 1-07. 
This must be kept in view in considering the consumption of fuel, as 
a better arrangement of valves would have given equal power with the 
same initial pressure of steam, and a much less consumption of fuel. 

Boilers. — The vessel was provided with two iron boilers, placed one 
on each side of the engine. They were of the double return drop flue 
kind, the flues being 12 inches in diameter. Total amount of heating 
surface, 750 square feet: — of fire grate surface, 47 square feet. Aggre- 
gate areas of the cross sections of the flues, or calorimeter, 6 "29 square 
feet. From these figures it will be seen that the proportion of fire grate 
to heating surface was 1 to 16; of calorimeter to fire grate, as 1*00 to 7-47. 
The boilers were flat bottom and sides, with a semi-circular top; the shell 
was stayed at every 12 inches, and would bear a working pressure of 20 
lbs. per square inch, which was frequently carried when towing. The 
mean pressure carried at sea was 12 lbs. per square inch, the piston making 
27 strokes per minute, cutting off a little beyond half stroke. The 
boilers would supply the cylinder for this number of strokes and steam 
pressure with great ease, maintaining the density of the water at KV°, 
(that of sea water being -g 1 ^,) at which density, and the temperature nor- 
mal to 12 lbs. of steam above the atmosphere, there was never made any 
scale, though steaming constantly among the coral reefs of the Gulf of 
Mexico. The boilers had so great a capacity of steam room (they ha«i 
no steam chimney) that they never foamed or primed. The hourly con- 
sumption of fuel was 658 lbs. of bituminous (Cumberland) coal, or 14 lbs. 
per square foot of grate per hour. From this data the boilers evaporated 
4*14 lbs. of sea water per hour per pound of coal. Estimating the loss 
of heat by "blowing off" at 15 per cent., the boiler evaporated 4*87 lbs. 
of sea water per pound of coal. This low evaporative efficiency of the 
boiler, economically considered, might have been anticipated from the 
small proportion of heating to grate surface, and from the quantity of coal 
consumed per hour on each square foot of grate considered in connexion 
with the calorimeter, which was only 1 to 7*47 of grate surface, instead of 
1 to about 5-2 of grate surface, which would have been about the proper 
area to supply the amount of fuel burnt, with sufficient oxygen to evolve 
all the caloric it was capable of giving out. 

Paddle Wheels. — The paddle wheels were of the common radial 
kind, 18.^ feet from outside to outside of paddles. Length of paddle 6^ 
feet; breadth, 22 inches. Each paddle in two pieces, 12 and 10 inches, 

Vol. XXL— Tuiud Skbiks.— No. 3.— Maech, 1851. 15 

170 Civil Engineering. 

bolted on opposite sides of arm. Mean immersion of lower edge of paddle 
40 inches. 

The bunkers carried about 80 tons of coal, which was stowed princi- 
pally forward of the engine and boilers, extending entirely athwart the 
vessel. With the bunkers full, the vessel was a little by the head; but 
when, by the consumption of the coal, the bow was so far lightened that 
the vessel was about a foot by the stern, which was the case when the 
bunker was about half exhausted, the vessel's speed would increase 
nearly a mile an hour with the same boiler pressure. 

The "Spitfire" had a sister vessel, the "Vixen," built from the same 
lines, of exactly the same size of hull, engine, wheels, &c, and carrying 
the same armament, crew, &c; but with equal boiler pressure, the speed 
of the "Spitfire" exceeded that of the "Vixen" by about fths of a mile 
per hour. 

During the bombardment of Vera Cruz and other towns, where the 
"Spitfire" was engaged, her three guns were run out on one side, and 
fired in broadside together as rapidly as they could be loaded, the guns 
being frequently double shotted; yet, notwithstanding the great dispropor- 
tion between the size of the battery and vessel, and the light scantling of 
the latter, the vessel did not sensibly feel the recoil. 

The "Spitfire" was a two masted, fore and aft rigged vessel, the fore- 
mast also carrying a large square sail; and although the proportion of sail 
to hull was as great as in sailing vessels, yet she was entirely inefficient 
under canvass alone, making, when light, (all coal out of bunker's,) with 
a good working breeze abeam and smooth sea, only three knots per hour, 
and even then, her leeway equalled her headway. Nor was her sail of any 
value as auxiliary to the steam, except with a fresh breeze abaft the 
beam, and even then it gave but a very slight increase of speed; with the 
wind abeam, or forward the beam, the sail was a disadvantage. She 
would have been a much more efficient war vessel for the peculiar lo- 
calities she was engaged in, had her masts been taken out on her arrival 
on the coast. Her draft of water could have been lightened 8 inches by 
the omission of the spars, unnecessary anchors, cables, &c, with which 
she w r as loaded. In the latter particulars, she was provided like a second 
class sloop of war, although a steamer acting principally in rivers, and 
always in sight of the shore. 

As much has been said about the difficulty encountered with single 
engines in "getting on the centre" when working slowly in a heavy head 
sea, I will take occasion to say, that the "Spitfire" was in some of the 
most violent "Northers" that blow during the winter in the Gulf, and 
laid to in the heaviest head seas I have ever witnessed, and I have crossed 
the Atlantic several times. While thus laying to, her engine would make 
from 4 to 6 revolutions per minute, with great regularity, never stopping 
or hesitating on the centre. It is, indeed, impossible to keep an engine on 
the centre in a sea way for a single instant, without first blocking the ma- 
chinery, for the action of the waves on the wheels keeps them constantly 
moving. When we were anchored behind the reefs that form the anchor- 
age of Anton Lizardo, during some violent gales, the light swell raised 
by the wind on the leeward side of the reef, would keep the engine con- 

On the Adhesion of Safety Valves. 


stantiy turning when the grease cups in the cylinder were opened to per- 
mit the escape of air. 

Performance. — The mean pressure of steam carried in the boilers 
above the atmosphere was 12 pounds per square inch. Number of strokes 
of the piston per minute, 27. Expansion valve closing a little beyond 
half stroke. Speed of vessel, 7-36 statute miles per hour. This was for 
the ordinary condition of water and weather found at sea. Slip of the 
centre of reaction of the paddles, 13-34 per cent. Loss by the oblique 
action of the paddles on the water, 18-5 per cent. Power required to 
work the engine, overcome load on air pump, friction of the load, &c, 
(obtained by estimating the initial pressure in the cylinder at 1 lb. less 
than the boiler pressure, and the backpressure at 3^ lbs.; considering the 
friction of the working parts of the engine at 5-5 per cent., the power to 
overcome the load on the air pump at 1 lb. on the steam piston, and the 
friction of the load at 10 per cent.,) 20*71 per cent. Leaving to be ap- 
plied to the propulsion of the vessel 52-55 per cent, of the total power 
developed by the engine. 

The subjoined indicator diagram was taken under the above mean 
conditions : — 


* 1 

2 3 

S 6ft, 

















U U-rt£' 













_ t 

Steam per boiler gauge above atmosphere, 12 lbs. per square inch. 

Strokes of piston per minute, 27. 

Mean effective pressure throughout stroke, 19-2 lbs. per square inch. 

Area of steam port, 100 square inches. 

Space displacement of piston per stroke, 42*408 cubic feet. 

On the Adhesion of the Safety Valves of Steam Boilers.* 

The following important fact, with respect to steam boiler safety valves, 
transpired at the inquest on those killed lately by a boiler explosion at Hali- 
fax, Yorkshire: — The galvanic adhesion arising from the combination of 
iron and brass in the seat and disk of the safety valve, is not generally 

* From the London Mining Journal, No. 800. 

172 Civil Engineering. 

known, and is too important to be overlooked by engineers, and those 
entrusted with the charge of steam boilers: — Mr. Wilson, engineer, said 
he had "examined the safety valve, and the result of my examination is 
to find that the seat is of cast iron, and the ralve is of brass, which, in 
my opinion, renders the action of the same quite uncertain at any pressure. 
This has been explained on the principle that steam acting upon these two 
metals produces what is called galvanic adhesion; a particular instance of 
which I have noticed from my own experience, where the valve had been 
working freely, and in the course of a very short time I had to use a ham- 
mer to remove it from its seat; when afterwards relieved, I had enough to 
do to hold it down by a lever at least four to one. The working press- 
ure of the valve I am referring to was 50 lbs., which, upon calculation, 
from the pressure required to hold down the lever, could not be less than 
double that amount. In this case, the uncertainty of the action of the 
valve, with the pressure gauge in the state just explained, may account 
for a pressure beyond calculation at the time of the explosion. * * * I 
have no proof in this instance that galvanic action had taken place. The 
valve seems to have been free, but it is possible it may have occurred, and 
in my opinion it is a very probable case. This result is likely to happen 
in a valve only recently made. It depends upon a given quantity of heat 
and a given temperature of steam. Whenever the pressure is overcome 
with a brass valve in the seat, it rises gently; but with an iron seat it rises 
suddenly, and with a noise." 

Cornish Engines.* 

The number of pumping engines reported this month is twenty-seven. 
They have consumed 2323 tons of coal, and lifted 21,000,000 tons of 
water, 10 fathoms high. The average duty of the whole is, therefore, 
52,000,000 lbs. lifted one foot high, by the consumption of 94 lbs. of 
coal. — Lean's Engine Reporter, Dec. 10. 

JVew Bill to Prevent Accidents in the Steam Marine Navy, f 

There are at the present time 1110 steam vessels in the mercantile 
navy of Great Britain, and upwards of 3000 accidents have occurred be- 
twixt steamers and sailing vessels within the last three years. The atten- 
tion of government having been drawn to the numerous accidents, Capt. 
Denham, R. N., F.R.S., was appointed to proceed to the various ports to 
which the vessels belonged, and in many instances to the nearest places 
where the accidents occurred, to make inquiry into their causes, and suc- 
ceeded in obtaining much valuable information on the subject. The 
gallant officer is now engaged with the legal authorities in drawing up 
a Bill, to be brought before Parliament next session, for the better regu- 
lation of the steam marine navy, and to compel those in charge of them 

* From the London Railway Journal, No. 602. 
t From the London Mining Journal, No. 798. 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 173 

to adopt greater precautionary measures than they do at present, the Acts 
of Parliament previously passed being in so many instances inapplicable, 
and not by any means imperative enough, or sufficient to award punish- 
ment for neglect of the regulations. It is feared, however, that the new 
Bill will not be made perfect until all sailing vessels, as well as steamers, 
are compelled to show lights at night. — Daily J\~ews. 


List of American Patents which issued from January 14, to February 11, 1851, (in- 

c/usive,) with Exemplifications by Charles M. Keller, late Chief Examiner of 

Patents in the U. S. Patent Office. 
31. For an Improvement in Tires for Railroad Car Wheels,- Theodore T. Abbot, Man- 
chester, New Hampshire, January 14. 

"The advantages of this improvement are, 1st, greater security to the wheel, — should 
one of the hoops break, enough will remain to prevent accident. The shape and position 
of the pieces, which form the tread, are the best possible to sustain the pressure. The 
tires in common use are liable to expand by the pressure, become loose, and draw off. This 
cannot happen to this kind of tire, for the pieces which form the tread, being distinct from 
those on the outside of it, if it were possible to expand them in this way, still the latter 
would remain unaffected. It is also the cheapest and most convenient method of substi- 
tuting steel for iron." 

Claim. — "What I claim, therefore, as my invention, is making the tires of car wheels 
by the combination of several distinct pieces, so arranged and disposed as mutually to sup- 
port and confine each other, substantially in the manner above described." 

32. For an Improvement in Raising Carriage Tops,- John L. Allen, Xew Haven, Con- 

necticut, January 14. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the application of a spiral spring, to operate 
upon the braces of a carriage top, so as to assist in supporting and elevating the top, sub- 
stantially as described and shown." 

33. For an Improvement in Looms for Weaving Piled Fabrics,- E. B. Bigelow, Clinton, 

Massachusetts, January 14. 

"The kind of fabric to be produced by my improved loom, are wrought double, that is, 
two cloths, one above the other, and the pile, or figuring warps, are alternately wrought 
or woven, first in one and then in the other cloth, the two cloths being kept at the required 
distance apart, by intersecting bars or plates, which determine the length of pile for the 
two fabrics, which is afterwards cut to separate them. 

"In the power loom, as heretofore essayed, for the weaving of this kind of fabric, the 
interposed bars or plates which separate the two fabrics, and which pass between the dents 
of the reed, were made stationary or immovable, the pile being cut by means of a knife, 
which vibrates in slots near the front ends of the said bars or plates. 

"This fixed position of the bars or plates, is a serious objection, as it prevents the proper 
vibratory motion of the cloth, at the time of the beat and the shedding of the warps. 

"The object of my invention is to avoid this difficulty, and to this end, the nature of my 
invention consists in so connecting the intersecting bars or plates with the loom, that they 
shall be free to vibrpte to the beat of the lathe, and to the shedding of the waips. 

"And my invention also consists in the employment of a stop, or stops, to arrest the 
motion of the said bars or plates at a given point, so that the reed, in beating up the cloth, 
shall cause the woven cloth to advance on them." 

i'liiim. — "What I claim as my invention, is connecting the intersecting bars or plates 
with the loom, substantially as described, so that they shall be free to vibrate, and yield to 
the beat of the lathe, and shedding of the warps, as described. 


174 American Patents. 

"And I also claim, combining with the said vibrating bars or plates, a stop or stops, to 
arrest them at the required point, substantially as described, that the continued beat of the 
lathe may cause the fabric to move forward over them, as described." 

34. For an Improvement in Connecting and Disconnecting Hubs and Axles,- A. M. 
Billings, Claremont, New Hampshire, January 14. 
"The nature of my improvement consists in detaching a wheel from its axle." * * * * 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is my device for detaching a wheel from its 

axle-tree, by means of the plate C C, acting as a wrench for unscrewing the nut B, which 

holds the wheel to the axle, said plate being advanced and withdrawn by the screw D, 

substantially in the manner herein described." 

35. For an Improvement in Tuyeres; Joseph Dorwart, Morgantown, Pennsylvania, Jan- 
uary 14. 
"My improved tuyere consists of an upright vessel, having a chamber within it, which 
is closed at the top by a movable grate, and at the bottom by a sliding shutter; the vessel 
is furnished with a wind-pipe, by means of which the blast from the bellows enters the 
chamber; the wind-pipe, at its junction with the chamber, curves upwards, to cause the au- 
to impinge more directly upon the grate bars, and a curved partition is introduced within 
the chamber, in such manner, that while it assists in turning the blast upwards, it allows 
any particles which may fall through the grate bars to pass it, and lodge at the bottom of 
the chamber, where they cannot obstruct the blast, and whence they are removed by with- 
drawing the sliding shutter." 

Claim. — "What I claim in the foregoing as my invention, is the curved partition in 
the air chamber, placed opposite the orifice of the wind-pipe, with its lower edge extending 
beneath this orifice, the arrangement and construction of the partition being such, that it 
serves the double purpose of directing the blast upwards, and facilitating the descent ot 
the cinders, as herein set forth." 

36 For an Improvement in Rotary Pumps; J. Stuart Gwynne, City of New York, 
January 14. 

"The general features of the machine are a hollow revolving piston, within which the 
water is received at the centre, and from the periphery of which it is thrown, by centrifu- 
gal power, into an outer and stationary case, whence it passes into the outlet pipe, through 
which it is discharged." 

Claim. — "I do not claim to be the inventor of the centrifugal pump. I do not claim 
simply using collars extending from the openings in the outer case to the openings in the 
piston case, to prevent the water or air from passing between said cases; nor extending the 
inlet or suction pipe inwards in such a manner as to supply the place of one of said col- 
lars, this having already been done; but I only claim thus extending said pipe when the 
collar on the opposite side is made adjustable, and the parts so arranged that the joint* of 
the piston case, with said pipe and collar, may be tightened as they wear, by tightening 
the adjustable collar only as described; the piston and case, and the suction pipe, being con- 
structed substantially as herein described." 

37. For an Improvement in Changing a Reciprocating into a Rotary Motion; Joseph 
Harris, Jr., Boston, Massachusetts, January, 14. 
('/aim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the application to steam or other engines, 
or machines, of a mechanical arrangement, whereby the effect of the applied power is ren- 
dered equal, or nearly so, both on the outward and return strokes, of any reciprocating or 
vibrating movement, using for that purpose the aforesaid combination of the cranks, con- 
necting rods, and oscillating lever, or their equivalents, as described in the above specifica- 
tion, and shown in the accompanying drawings." 

38. For an Improvement in Cast Iron Car Wheels,- George R. McFarlane, Hollidays- 
burg, Pennsylvania, January 14. 
"The advantages possessed by a wheel thus constructed are, that, while the curvilinear 
shape of the arms at tkeir connexion with the rim, gives to the wheel all the strength and 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 175 

advantages possessed by a plate or disk wheel, the openings between the arms allowing 
the centre of the wheel to give in cooling, the contraction is more easily regulated than in 
a plate wheel; and that the wheel may be cast with a solid or split heel, as may be pre- 
ferred, and may be moulded either by bedding in or turning over." 1 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the mode of constructing a cast iron car 
wheel, by the use of spokes or arms, composed in part of portions of a hollow cone, con- 
nected by brackets, and in part by straight spokes or arms, forming a continuation of plates 
and spokes, possessing the advantages and obviating the objections of both." 

39. For an Improvement in Reflectors for Street Lamps; Hugh Sangster and James 
Sangster, Buffalo, New York, January 14. 

"Our invention consists in a lamp, which is provided with a double, triple, or quadruple 
concave reflector, placed between two or more burners, the number of burners correspond- 
ing with the number of faces of the reflector, and in making each face of the reflector of a 
number of concave rings, concentric in outline, as hereinafter described and shown." 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is making the faces of the reflector in con- 
cave rings, substantially in the manner and for the purposes herein set forth." 

40. For an Improved Steering Apparatus,- Joseph E. Andrews, Boston, Massachusetts, 
January 14. 

"The nature of my invention consists in transmitting the power applied through the 
steering wheel to the rudder, by means of two cranks, set in opposite directions on a shaft 
having fixed bearings; the said crank being connected, by connecting rods having universal 
joints, to projections or arms on the rudder post, and the power being applied to the shaft 
upon which the cranks are fixed, by means of an endless screw on the axle of the steering 
wheel gearing into a worm wheel on the shaft. This apparatus is very rigid and unyield- 
ing, and at the same time works with the greatest ease and freedom, and is not at all likely 
to get out of repair by wear or accident." 

"Claim. — "What I claim as new in my invention, is the combination of the cranks H H, 
and the connecting rods K K 7 , which are attached by universal joints to the projections or 
arms X X, on the rudder post, the cranks having a worm wheel G, on their shaft or axis, 
which gears with and is actuated by an endless screw F, on the axle or shaft of the steer- 
ing wheel, the whole of the parts being arranged in the manner substantially as described." 

41. For an Improvement in Carriages,- John Jones, Clyde, New York, January 14. 

"The nature of my invention consists in constructing carriage reaches in such a manner 
as to prevent a zigzag motion, on plank and descending roads; and also in an arrangement 
to allow the carriage to cramp any desired degree, without having the wheels strike the 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement of two bars or reaches, 
placed in connexion with the straight reach, as above described, and in combination with 
the spring rod and cross bar, substantially in the manner described." 

42. For an Improved Propeller,- Andrew W. Thompson, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 
January 21. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is a propeller, constructed as herein described, 
in such manner that any one of its blades, in any line drawn cither parallel or perpen- 
dicular to its entering edge, shall have the curvature of a parabola, produced as herein set 

43. For an Improvement in Brick Presses,- Jacob Scheitlcir, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 
January 21. 

"The nature of my invention consists in so constructing a brick machine that the clay, 
as it is dug from the ground, may be placed in the hopper, mixed, screened, and pressed 
into bricks, and delivered from the moulds ready for the kiln, without any farther manual 
labor than the mere placing of the clay in the hopper." 

Claim. — "1st, I claim, in combination with the clay ducts and alternating carriage of 

176 American Patents. 

moulds, the rods g' with their knives H', (for the purpose of cutting off and forcing into 
the moulds the regular quantity of clay,) and sliding plate or gate Z, for the purpose of 
opening and closing the communication between the clay ducts and moulds, as herein de- 
scribed and represented. 

"2d, I claim the arrangement of the pins n n, connecting rods o o, and standard N, with 
its arm Q, for the purpose of removing the brick after it is raised from the mould, when 
the same are operated by means of the cranks, as herein described and shown." 

44. For an Improvement in Stoves,- George H. Thatcher, Albany, New York, Janu- 
ary 21. 

Claim. — ''Having thus described my improvements in the combined open and air-tight 
stoves, and shown the advantages of the same, I wish it to be understood, that I do not 
claim the device of sliding doors between parallel jambs or plates, for the purpose of con- 
cealing the same. 

"But what I do claim as new, is the providing of the sliding doors A with flanches 
H H, on their vertical edges; the rear flanches serving the purpose of hinges in opening 
and closing the same, and also serving to form air-tight joints when the doors are closed; 
and the front flanches serving, in connexion with the projecting ends E E ef the side plates 
B B, to relieve the appearance of a joint when the doors are opened, as before described. 

"I also claim the providing of the side plates B B, with projecting front plates F F, for 
the purpose of forming fronts to the spaces into which the doors are slid when open, to 
conceal the same; and in connexion with the rear flanches H H to form the hinges of the 
doors when closing the same, and also to conceal a portion of the front flanches when the 
doors are opened and slid back, as described." 

45. For an Improvement in Convertible Plough-Stocks,- Edward T. Parker, Berkley, 
Alabama, January 21. 

"My plough and cultivator is adapted and designed for breaking up the soil and sub-soil, 
and in cultivating it." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is so constructing a sub-soil plough, with 
removable mould board and cutter, in combination with the tri-pronged cultivating teeth, 
that the same stock may be used either for a sub-soil plough, or common ploughing, sub- 
stantially the same as herein set forth." 

46. For an Improvement in Tools for Embossing Backs of Books,- Charles Starr, City 
of New York, January 21. 

"The nature of my invention relates to the circular or cylindrical tools used by book- 
binders for embossing, lettering, and gilding covers of books, more especially their back^. 
It consists in the employment of a loose hollow cylinder, or cylinders, fitted upon a solid 
cylinder or roller, and having spaces cut through to admit of loose tools being secured to 
the solid or foundation cylinder or roller; the edge of the space in the outside cylinder 
forming the frame margin or outline of the panel or ornament, and the inside being filled 
with ornaments of any design, suitable to the taste of the designer or binder." 

Claim. — "I do not claim forming various devices by gluing or securing loose or detached 
tools to a surface, as that is common. 

"But what I do claim as my invention, is forming circular embossing, gilding, or letter- 
in - tools of any required pattern for embossing, gilding, and lettering book covers, by 
having a case or hollow metal cylinder B, fitting on a roller A, and having an opening 
b b, or openings, in it of any required form, for a panel or other border; the part of the 
periphery of the roller A within the opening or openings in the case, having any required 
number of small tools ccc, of any suitable form or pattern, secured to it, the surfaces of 
said tools standing even with the outer face of the case or cylinder B, or by the emplev- 
aicnt of any number of tools, consisting of parts of a hollow cylinder secured to a solid 
cylinder, substantially in the manner herein described." 

47. For an Improved Lee-Way Indicator,- A. A. Wilder, Detroit, Michigan, January 21. 

"The said improvement consists in attaching the vane at one end by a pin to the bottom 

of the rod, so that it is capable of taking a position in line with the rod, or at an angle 

to it, a spring of convenient form, hereafter described, being attached to one side of the 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 177 

rod, opposite to the direction the vane takes when in use, for the purposes both of keeping 
the vane in position, in line with the keel when in use, and holding it secure within or 
above the keel when not in use." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is hanging the vane E loose at the bottom of 
the rod C, which carries or communicates with the pointer, and holding it either in posi- 
tion for operation, or secure within the vessel above the bottom of the keel, by means of a 
spring d, or its equivalent, operating substantially as herein set forth." 

48. For a Horse-Shoe Nail Machine; Daniel Wilson, Jr., assignor to D. Wilson, Jr., and 
H. M. Bird, North Chelmsford, Massachusetts, January 21. 

"The combination of parts necessary to cut and head the nail is thus much simplified, 
the same being produced by the peculiar construction, arrangement, and mode of operating 
them, as described and represented." 

Claim. — "What, therefore, I claim, is the simple combination of the punch, the slotted 
beddie, the heading die, the header slide, discharging orifice and header, as arranged, con- 
structed, and made to operate together, substantially as specified; or, in other words, their 
arrangement and construction, essentially as explained, whereby they are made, to sepa- 
rate the nail blank from the rolled plate, to move it downwards upon the header slide, to 
cause the header slide to advance, in the mean time to hold the nail blank by means of 
the punch and header slide, to cause the header slide to slide underneath the nail, while 
it is so held, to carry the header against the nail and head it, to cause the header slide to 
retract or move backwards far enough to carry or move the discharging orifice directly 
under the nail, and so that the nail may be forced down into or through such orifice by 
the further depression of the punch, which next takes place, and finally, to elevate the said 
punch to its first or highest position." 

49. For an Improvement in Stoves,- Elihu Smith, Albany, New York, January 28. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of a transparent water 
vessel, with mica covered or other transparent openings in the top of a stove plate, and a 
mirror placed upon a stove top, as herein represented and described." 

50. For Improvements in Metal or Second Patterns for Castings,- Francis N. Still, 
City of New York, January 28. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is preparing second patterns by moulding 
metal patterns in two part moulds, and then separating the two parts of the mould, the 
pattern being left in the sand to cast a plate fitted to the metal pattern, so moulding as 
specified, so that the pattern can be attached to the plate, and the two be used in mould- 
ing to produce castings, substantially as described." 

51. For an Improvement in Abdominal Supporters,- Moses L. Knapp, Painesvillc, Ohio, 
January 28. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the construction of hip springs, with split 
or divided ends, forming elongations of the same strip of steel, the front springs having 
slots and pivot holes, and the back springs having two or more graduating pivot holes, to 
be used in combination with the adjusting screw and pivot screws, as herein substantially 
set forth." 

52. For a Swivel-nibbed Key; James Hanley, City of New York, January 28. 

"My improvement consists substantially in making the end of the key that passes 
through the lock to revolve, irrespective of the particular mechanical means by which it is 
attached to the key." \ 

Claim. -±"l therefore claim as my invention, the making the exposed ends of keys in 
such a manner that they may revolve freely upon the other parts of the key, substantially 
in the manner and for the purposes described." 

53. For an Improvement in the Hydraulic Ram,- William Field, Jr., Providence, Rhode 
Island, January 28. 
Claim. — "I claim as my inventicn and improTemcnt, the hinge valve C, opening up- 

178 American Patents. 

wardly and inwardly, at or near the upper end of the inclined plane or drive pipe C D of 
the hydraulic ram; said valve being placed in a box made of brass, or any other suitable 
materials, which valve, by closing on the reaction of the water in the drive pipe, prevents 
the said reaction from disturbing the water in the spring or reservoir. The box of said 
valve is bolted to the drive pipe, as represented in the annexed drawing; and said valve 
may be a hinge valve, or any other suitable Talve." 

54. For an Improvement in Drawing Regulators for Spinning Machines; Newell 
Wyllys, South Glastenbury, Connecticut, January 28. 

"The object of my invention consists in such an arrangement of mechanism in con- 
nexion with the condensing tube or trumpet, that when the sliver is of the proper size, the 
trumpet occupies a certain neutral position, in which the force exerted by the weight to 
move the trumpet in one direction, and that exerted by the sliver to move it in the opposite 
direction, balance each other; and whenever the sliver is too thick, the former force pre- 
ponderates, the trumpet is moved in advance of its neutral position, the effective length of 
the lever through which it acts is diminished, and the weight tends to return the trum- 
pet to its neutral position, with correspondingly increased force; whenever the sliver is 
drawn too thin, the force of the weight preponderates over that exerted by the sliver, the 
trumpet is moved back of its neutral position, the effective length of the lever through 
which it acts is increased, and consequently the sliver tends to return the trumpet to its 
neutral position with correspondingly increased force." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement of the trumpet as herein 
described, in connexion with the system of weighted levers, escapement and reversed cone 
pulleys, whereby the force required to move the trumpet is made to vary under different 
circumstances to a sufficient extent to prevent over sensitiveness in the mechanism, will 
change the relative speed of the drawing rolls to inequalities in the slivers, while at the 
same time but little force is required to effect such changes, thus proportioning the draw 
more nearly than heretofore to the quantity of fibre in the sliver, and thereby rendering 
the latter of more uniform diameter and density." 

55. For an Improvement in Pens for Ruling Paper,- Alfred Hathaway, Boston, Massa- 
chusetts, January 28. 

Claim. — "Whatever maybe the number of thicknesses of metal the back bar and 
pens are composed, mv improvement, and what I claim, consists in not only making the 
upper one larger than the others, but in making it the marking part, and soldering the next 
one below it to it, as specified. Such improved mode of making the pen or pens, I claim 
as my invention, and whether the plates of metal placed upon one another be of different 
metals, or of different thicknesses of metal, as described. 

"And I also claim the improvement in the construction of the back bar, the same con- 
sisting in making it with a slit or opening u between any two pens, and extending nearly 
or quite up to the vertex of the angle or bend of the bar, as specified, the same producing 
the advantage above mentioned. 

"And when the pen is composed of more than two thicknesses of metal, I claim the 
improvement by which one single soldering of the upper and lower parts together suffice 
to bind or keep all the parts together or in place, the said improvement consisting in making 
the lowest thickness of metal larger than any of the others, except the first or upper, and 
marking one, as described. 

"And I also claim the method of making the pens and back bar, as shown in figs. 5 and 
6, when the same are composed of two different thicknesses of metal, or of two plates of 
different metals, the said improvement consisting in making the lower plate to enclose or 
lap over the one or others above it, as seen at g in fig. 6, and thus make the back bar of one 
more thickness of metal than the pens are composed of. 

"And I also claim to make the different thicknesses of the pen of different metals, as 


1. For an Improvement in a Machine for Bending or Setting Felloes for the Wheels of 
Carriages,- Edward Reynolds, Haddonfield, New Jersey; patented July 17, 1835; 
extended July 11, 1849; re-issued January 1, 1851. 
"The object of my invention is to bend the felloes of wheels, by machinery, and con- 

American Patents which issued in January, 1851. 179 

sist8 in bending the wood, which has been properly prepared, by the use of a cylinder, or 
segment of one, in combination with an auxiliary friction roller, or its equivalent, between 
which and the cylinder the piece of wood to be bent is placed, one end being securely at- 
tached to the cylinder." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method, substantially as described, of 
bending felloes for carriages, by means of a cylinder, upon which the felloe is bent, and a 
friction roller, or its equivalent, against which it is bent, substantially as described, when 
used in connexion with a strap, for preventingt he wood from splitting on its exterior sur- 
face, or otherwise." 

2. For an Improvement in Sofa Bedsteads,- Russell Scarritt, St. Louis, Missouri; patent- 
ed October 8, 1850; re-issued January 7, 1851. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the frames DD, which 
are of the same form as the sofa ends F F, with the said sofa ends, substantially in the 
manner and for the purpose as herein set forth, to wit: when the back A is elevated, to 
convert the sofa bed into a sofa, the frames D D must be swung inwards against the sofa 
back, to retain it in an elevated position, and to throw the said frames out of the way and 
out of sight; and when it is desired to change the sofa bed from a sofa to a bed, the said 
frames D D can only be swung outwards into a line with the sofa ends F F, so that the 
ledges //, on the inner sides of the same, will unerringly catch and retain the back A, when 
it reaches a horizontal position as it is thrown backwards, in which position the sofa ends 
F F, and the swinging frames D D, will form an ornamental and uniform head and foot 
to the bed form of my improved sofa bed. 

"I also claim the placing of the pivots 1 1, which suspend the mattrass frame A, such a 
distance from the lower or inner edge of the same, that when the said mattrass frame is 
thrown backwards into a horizontal position, the lower or inner edge of the mattrass A', 
will, by that movement, be thrown forwards, and press against the rear edge of the mat- 
trass B', with such force as to form a close and an elastic joint between the two, and thereby 
furnish an extra width to the bed form of my improved sofa bed, substantially in the man- 
ner herein set forth. 

"I also claim the projection of the mattrass A' below the pivots that it turns upon, in 
combination with the movement of the mattrass B' on hinges located at its front edge, by 
means of which a firm and close joint is formed between the rear edge of the mattrass B' 
and the face of the mattrass A', when they are arranged in the form of a sofa, which joint 
aids in retaining the said mattrass A' in an elevated position, substantially as herein set 

3. For an Improvement in Machines for Folding Paper,- Edward N. Smith, West 
Brookfleld, Massachusetts, assignor to The American Paper Folding Company, 
Springfield, Massachusetts; patented November 27, 1849; re-issued January 7, 1851. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method of folding sheets of paper 
mechanically; by means of a reciprocating straight edge, or its equivalent, which strikes 
the sheet where the fold is to be made, and forces it into a recess or space between two 
surfaces, through which it can be delivered, in combination with a mechanism which pre- 
sents the sheet at the proper place and time to make the fold or folds at the proper line or 
lines, substantially as described. 

"I also claim the method of completing the folds in sheets of paper, by passing them 
between converging surfaces, in combination with the method of forming the folds, sub- 
stantially as described. 

"And, finally, I claim the moving surfaces of endless belts, or their equivalents, on 
which the sheets of paper are extended, and by which they arc moved, in combination witli 
the method of making and completing the folds, substantially in the manner specified." 

4. For an Improvement in Machinery for Making Mouldings,- Alfred T. Serrcll, City 
of New York; patented May 16, 1848; re-issued January 7, 1851. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new and of my own invention, is the combination of the 
feed and pressure rollers, constructed and operating substantially as described, with one or 
more cutters or planes, for giving the proper form or dressing to the moulding, when said 
combined parts operate upon material which has been sawed or cut, as nearly as may be 

180 American Patents. 

convenient, into the general form of the moulding to be produced, as herein described, for 
the purpose of economizing the material, or facilitating the operation." 

5. For Improvements in Sewing Machines,- Sherburne C. Blodget, Georgetown, Massa- 
chusetts, and John A. Lerow, Boston, Massachusetts; patented October 2, 1849; re- 
issued January 14, 1851. 

"Our machine is distinguished from all other sewing machines now known to us, in 
several points very essential to the accomplishment of any valuable results from the ma- 
chine, and any real practical advantages over hand work." 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention in the above described rotary sewing ma- 
chine, is arranging the shuttle which carries the filling thread, so that it shall revolve hori- 
zontally in a circular shuttle-race, said shuttle being constructed with a curved front and 
pointed nose, which shall travel in a circular guiding groove sunk below the bottom of 
said race, so that the shuttle shall invariably pass through the loop formed in the needle 
thread, all as herein above set forth." 

"We also claim the pad or washer under the spring arms which carry the shuttle, for 
keeping the filling thread straight, as herein before explained. Furthermore, we claim the 
combination of the wide spring c' c' , and the bent lever spring/'/'', operating as herein 
above described, or any contrivance substantially equivalent thereto, for relaxing the needle 
thread, when the loop is to be formed, and holding it rigidly when each stitch is to be 
tightened, as herein above set forth. 

"We also claim the converging nipper springs, through which the needle, &c, passes, to 
keep the thread up and prevent the needle from splitting or breaking it, as herein above 
set forth. 

"We also claim the combination and arrangement of the spring arms q' q, q' q' , with 
the cam ledge s' s' , or any other means essentially the same, for the purpose of discon- 
necting, alternately, said arms from the shuttle, for the purpose of allowing the shuttle to 
pass through the loop, as herein described and represented." 


1. For a Design for a Cook Stove; William C. Davis, Cincinnati, Ohio, January 1. 

Claim. — "What I claim herein as new, is the ornamental design for a stove, substan- 
tially as represented in the accompanying drawings." 

2. For a Design for a Stove,- Charles Gilbert and Witchell G. Hallman, assignors to 
Charles Gilbert, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 1. 
Claim. — "What we claim as our invention or production, is the ornamental design, as 
above described, and represented in accompanying drawings." 

3. For a Design for Stoves,- Elihu Smith, Albany, New York, January 7. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my preduction, is the combination and arrangement of 
ornamental figures and forms, represented in the accompanying drawings, forming, together, 
an ornamental design for a parlor stove." 

4. For a Design for Stoves; Joseph G. Lamb, Cincinnati, Ohio, January 21. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new and my invention, is the arrangement and combina- 
tion of the above described and represented shapes, figures, ornaments, flutes, and mould- 
ings into the above specified design, for coal heating stoves, substantially as above shown." 

5. For a Design for Stoves,- S. W. Gibbs, Albany, New York, assignor to North, Har- 
rison & Co., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 21; ante' dated December 31, 1850. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the ornamental design for a stove, as herein 
described and represented in the annexed drawings." 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 181 

6. For a Design for Cooking Stoves,- Samuel W.Gibbs, assignor to Ira Jagger, "William 
B. Treadwell and John S. Perry, Albany, New York, January 21. 
C /aim «— -"What I claim as my production, is the combination and arrangement of 
ornamental figures and forms represented in the annexed drawings, as making an orna- 
mental design for a cooking stove." 

7. For a Design for Stoves,- Conrad Harris and Paul W. Zoiner, Cincinnati, Ohio, Janu- 
ary 28. 
Claim. — "What wc claim as our invention, is the combination and arrangement of the 
above represented scrolls, foliage, figures, and mouldings, into an ornamental design for 
coal and wood parlor stoves, to be known and called 'Harris & Zoiner's Patent Coal and 
Wood Parlor Stove.' " 


1. For an Improvement in the Manner of Constructing Railroad Carriages, so as t» 
Ease the Lateral Motion of the Bodies thereof; Charles Davenport and Albert 
Bridges, Cambridgoport, Massachusetts; patented May 4, 1841; re-issued December 
3, 1850. 

"The object of our improvement is to obviate the effects of the above lateral shocks, by 
mechanism suitably arranged." 

Claim. — "We do not claim as our invention the making stationary the turning bearing, 
or contrivance which supports the railway 'long car,' or carriage body, on the truck frame, 
and allows a horizontal rotary motion of the truck frame independently of the car bodv 
or frame, as this has been done before the date of our invention; but in order to obviate 
the effect of lateral shocks, as specified, as well as for sundry other purposes. 

"What we do claim, is the connecting the said bearing to the truck frame of the above 
described kind, resting on four wheels or more, by a mechanism substantially such as de- 
scribed, that shall not only allow such turning bearing independently of the wheels and 
axles a lateral play, movement or movements, in directions transversely of the carriage, but 
bring or move it back to its central position, after the lateral deflective force has ceased to 


1. For a Design for Stoves,- Samuel Pierce, assignor to Johnson, Cox & Fuller, Troy, 
New York, December 3. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new,is the design of ornament and configuration of cook 
stoves, substantially the same as herein described and represented." 

2. For a Design for Stoves,- Morris Smith and Benona S. Gleason, Le Roy, New York, 
December 3. 
Claim. — "Having thus described the nature of our new design, what we claim therein 
as new, is the design of ornament and configuration, constituting in construction a new 
design of stove, substantially the same as herein described and represented in the annexed 

3. For a Design for Stoves,- Charles A. Lambard, Augusta, Maine, December 10. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my production, is the combination and arrangement of 
ornamental figures and forms, represented in the accompanying drawings, as niakin g 
ornamental design for an air-tight cooking stove." 


1. For an Improvement in Lard Lamps,- Delamar Kinnear, Circleville, Ohio, Febru- 
ary 4. 
"The nature of my invention and improvement consists in forming a chamber i of the 
form of a section of a frustrum of a pyramid, in its cross section, above the ordinary cham- 

Vol. XXI.— Tuird Series.— No. 3.— M A ncH, 1851. 1G 

182 American Patents. 

ber that contains the liquid for producing the light, so as to make the sides of said cham- 
ber perform the two offices of side chambers, for preventing the spilling or waste of the 
liquid lard or oil when the axis of the lamp is made to deviate from a perpendicular line, 
and assume a horizontal position, or an approximation thereto, in handling the lamp care- 
lesslv, and as side channels or dovetail grooves for the slide or cover to move in when a 
slide cover or stopper is substituted for a screw cap stopper." 

Claim. — "I disclaim the invention of every part of the lamp except the angular cham- 
bers i, or grooves above the reservoir a, on either side of the wick tubes b c, for preventing 
the spilling or waste of the oil when the stem of the lamp is held in a horizontal or inclined 
position; and also the dovetailed slide d, and the aforesaid angular channels or grooves i. 

"I claim as my invention in combination with a lamp of the peculiar form and con- 
struction represented in the annexed drawings, or other form substantially the same; said 
channels or grooves serving also to receive and hold the sliding cover d, used for closing 
the supply opening, instead of the ordinary screw cap, and in combination with the afore- 
said angular channels. 

"I also claim the said sliding cover d, when made with correspondingly shaped sides to 
fit and move in said channels, all as herein described and represented." 

2. For an Improved Method of obtaining Motive Power; William Mt. Storm, Troy, New 
York, February 4. 

"The fundamental principle of my invention consists in producing and applying as a 
motive force, the sudden expansion or increased tension produced by the intensely rapid 
combustion, or the explosion of a solid combustible, in a compressed gaseous supporter of 

Claim. — "What I claim is, actuating an engine, such as are now usually driven by 
steam, or of any convenient form, by means of the combustion, allied to an explosion, of 
a measured or detailed quantity of a charcoal (or other solid carbonaceous fuel, similar in 
nature and of like effect,) in a measured quantity of highly compressed air, (or oxygen.) 
said combustion being effected in a vessel which, at that time, is not in connexion either with 
the reservoir or main source of compressed air, or with that of the charcoal, and the gases 
resulting from each separate and distinct explosion being allowed to act on the pistons, or 
their equivalents, before the other charges are introduced into the exploding or combus- 
tion vessel; the whole operation being effected through the agency of apparatus in nature 
substantially such as are herein specified, or apparatus that shall effect the whole opera- 
tion in the manner claimed. 

"I also claim, in actuating an engine as just claimed, using the combustible in a 
granulated or pulverized form, for the purposes and various reasons made known." 

3. For an Improvement in Cooking Stoves,- Backus A. Beardsley, Waterville, New 
York, February 4. 
"Mv invention consists in constructing a cooking stove in such manner that the heated 
air and gaseous products of the combustion of the fuel are more equably and perfectly 
distributed under the bottom of the lower oven, thereby causing a more even heating of the 
oven bottom, and that the distribution of the heat can be varied to accommodate it to the 
draft of the chimney under different circumstances. At each side of the said oven I also 
fit an air-box, whose interior communicates with the flue space beneath the oven, and 
which tends to keep these sides of the oven at the proper temperature without the use of 
side flues." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the construction of the adjustable and 
sliding partitions (G and G, fig. 3,) by which the draft of the stove and the distribution of 
the heated air under the bottom of the lower oven is varied and controlled at pleasure, 
adjusting the same to the particular place and circumstances of each stove; the whole being 
arranged and constructed substantially as set forth and described." 

4. For an Improvement i?i Machines for Preparing Hides,- Thomas W. Jones, Philo- 
math, Georgia, February 4. 
"My invention consists in drawing the h ; des or leather in a continuous manner beneath 
sets of stampers, which occupy such positions with respect to each other that the shoes of 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 183 

one set are opposite the spaces between the shoes of the other, and which being caused to 
rise and fall alternately, beat and press the hide or leather drawn continuously between 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method of consolidating and smooth- 
ing leather by drawing it with a continuous motion beneath a series of stampers, which 
alternately rise, fall, and rest upon its surface, a portion of the stampers being at all times 
in contact with the leather, so that the smoothing of its surface is constantly going on 
simultaneously with the consolidation by the blows of the falling stampers." 

5. For Improvements in Fancy Check Power Looms,- Enoch Burt, Manchester, Con- 

necticut, February 4. 
"I wish it to be clearly understood that I do not limit myself to the precise construc- 
tion of the various parts, and the arrangement of them as above specified, as these may be 
varied within the principle of my invention." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method substantially as above described, 
of regulating the packing ring interposed between the steam wheel and head of the cylin- 
der or outer casing of rotary steam engines, by combining with the said packing ring a 
series of segment wedges, operated simultaneously in manner substantially as described." 


6. For an Improved Ship's Light; Leonard Goodrich, City of New York, February 4. 
Claim. — "I claim hanging the screwed socket or frame C containing the glass, so as to 

turn freely within a frame H, which swings on a hinge K K I, provided with a slot k, or 
its equivalent, whereby the socket C can be screwed into or unscrewed from the fixed 
socket B, and when unscrewed, be swung back, substantially as herein described." 

7. For an Improvement in Grain Harvesters; Sidney S. Hurlbut, Racine, Wisconsin, 
February 4. 
Claim — "Having thus described my improved reaping machine, I first claim combining 
with a reaping machine a self-acting weighing apparatus for weighing the grain into any 
required quantity, to form sheaves or bundles of a uniform weight, as described, depositing 
the same upon the ground in readiness to be tied, whilst the reaping machine is drawn 
forward and cuts the grain; the said weighing apparatus being made adjustive, so as to 
increase or diminish the size of the bundles at pleasure; and this I claim, whether the 
weighing apparatus be made and arranged as described, or in any other way which is 
substantially the same, or whether combined with the aforesaid reaping machine, or any 
other of a similar character. 

"2d, I likewise claim the combination of the bent holders W W,with the inclined end- 
less conveyor for holding the grain thereupon, whilst conveying it to the weighing and 
depositing apparatus, as aforesaid." 

8. For an Improved Scraper,- Charles Schofield and George J. Johns, Albion, Illinois, 
February 11. 
Claim. — "Having thus fully described our invention, what we claim as new, is the com- 
bination and arrangement of the scoop A, standard B, beam G, arm E,and handles H, in 
such manner, that when the scoop is tipped, it will revolve sufficiently far to allow the 
earth to slide off, and then remain in such position as that the operator, by a slight move- 
ment of the handles, can level down the earth with the scoop, and without the aid of an- 
other hand or another scraper, as herein described and represented." 

9. For an Improvement in the Seeding Apparatus of a Seed Planter,- Samuel and 
Morton Pennock, Kcnnctt Square, Pennsylvania, February 11. 
Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the employment of the ring or cylinder 
A, having projections on its periphery, in combination with the notched and toothed cylin- 
der gauge caps C D, constructed, arranged, and operated, substantially in the manner 
herein set forth, for increasing and diminishing the size and number of the distributing 
receptacles, as represented in figures 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. 

184 American Patents. 

"We likewise claim the combination of the helical spring I, screw shaft E, flanched nut 
N, and clamp nut H, with the notched and toothed cylindrical gauge caps to which the 
ends of the spring are attached, for turning the gauge cap, in order to change the relation- 
ship of the teeth or projections of one of the caps with the teeth or projections on the adja- 
cent cap, for enlarging the distributing receptacles, as described in the foregoing specifica- 
tion, as represented in fig. 5 in the annexed drawings. 

"We also claim the combination of the screw shaft E, clutch nut G, clutch washer F, 
and clamp nut H, with the toothed cylinder caps C D, for enlarging or diminishing the 
distributing receptacles, as described and represented in fig. 7. 

"We likewise claim the modifications of the distributing apparatus in their simplified 
forms, as represented in figures 14 and 15, the several parts being operated in the manner 
herein set forth." 

10. For an Improvement in Sewing Machines,- William O. Grover, Boston, and William 
E. Baker, Roxbury, Massachusetts, February 11. 

"The distinguishing feature of our invention, consists in the use of two needles, instead 
of one needle, and a shuttle carrying a filling thread, either by a rotary or a transverse 
movement, and the forming of fcdouble loop stitch, by the peculiar movements of said two 
needles and their respective threads. 

Claim. — "What we claim as our invention, is the use of two needles, operating alter- 
nately, one working vertically and the other horizontally, substantially as herein above 
described, and uniting two pieces of cloth, or forming the seam, by means of the double 
loop stitch, as herein above set forth." 

11. For Improvements in Operating the Waste Gate of Hydraulic Rams ,- John Osborn, 
Hamden, Connecticut, February 11. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the application of a regulator, acted upon by 
a float in the spring or source from which the water runs to drive the machine, which re- 
gulator increases or lessens the stroke of the waste valve, or shuts it by means of levers 
or other means, according to the rise or fall of the water in the spring or source, thus 
proportioning the use of the water to the quantity in the source. And it further consists 
in a self-acting arrangement for opening the waste valve, and thereby starting the machine, 
when the water in the source is sufficiently high to use, after the ram has been stopped 
by a deficiency in the supply." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the use of the regulating slide M, and nut, 
or other similar arrangement, in combination with the levers, wires, springs, rods, weights, 
or other devices, substantially similar to those described, for adjusting the waste valve, and 
operated on by, and in connexion with, a float F at the spring or source, which float rises 
or falls with the water. 

"I also claim the use of the hammer R, resting or falling on a springing piece S, for 
opening the waste valve D, or starting the hydraulic ram, and worked as described, or in 
any other similar manner." 

12. For a Method of Securing Ranges of Short Plank in Pavements,- Joseph E. Ware, 
St. Louis, Missouri, February 11. 

"The nature of this invention and improvement consists in a method of securing certain 
parts of planking on streets in such a manner as to permit their removal, so as to reach 
pipes or sewers underneath; the planks being cut in short pieces for such ranges, and with 
such bevels or overlaps as to cause one piece to aid in holding down the other." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method above described of securing 
ranges of short pieces of planking of a street or road in longitudinal lines over water or 
sjas pipes, by means of screws or keys with staples, aided by the double bevel of the short 
planks, and the ends of the permanent interval planks severally holding and permitting of 
the easy removal of such short piece." 


Description of the Design for the Building for the Exhibition of all Nations, 
and of t/ie gradual development of the method of construction employed. 
By Mr. Paxton.* 

The author began by stating, that the Great Exhibition Building was 
the development and result of a very long series of experiments, made by 
him at Chatsworth, in the erection of the different horticultural buildings 
there, on which he had been engaged since the year 1828. The pine- 
house, built in 1833, was the first in which the ridge-and-furrow roof — 
an essential feature in the great building — was employed. This roof was 
contrived by the author, so that the glass in it might be more nearly at 
right angles to the slanting and weak, though valuable, rays of the morn- 
ing and evening sun, than the glass used in straight roofs. So well was 
it found to answer, that in 1834 he built a green-house, 97 feet 6 inches 
by 26 feet, with a mean height of 14 feet 6 inches. This building, even 
under the old glass tax, cost only 2d. per cubic foot. It was followed, in 
1836, by a "curvilinear" hot-house, 60 feet by 26 feet, so called from 
the roof being a quarter circle: here the Victoria Regia first flowered in 
1849. In the following year the great conservatory was commenced; and, 
in order to economize labour in its construction, the author invented a 
machine for forming the sash-bars, by which he effected a saving of 
.£1400, and for which the Society of Arts, in 1841, gave him the silver 
medal. This has been the type of all the machines for wooden sash-bars 
since used. For this building sheet glass was first made, by the Messrs. 
Chance and Co., of the length of 4 feet, — nothing beyond 3 feet having 
ever before been made. The great conservatory is 277 feet lone, 123 
feet wide, and 67 feet to the crown of its domed roof. 

In a conservatory at Darley Dale, in 1840, the author first employed 
the ridge-and-furrow roof on a level, — that is, neither curvilinear nor in- 
clined, as in the former cases. The breadth of this building is 17 feet; 
and so successful was it, that, in a letter from the proprietor, it was said 
to be constantly used as a sitting-room by his family. This was more 
extensively carried out in the new Victoria Regia house, 60 feet 6 inches 
in length and 46 feet 9 inches in breadth, with a clear span for the roof 
of 33 feet 6 inches; and which, on its small scale, is a perfect type of the 
great building. 

The Industrial Building. 

The inducement for offering a design for this building was the follow- 
ing: — When plans for the structure were sent in by various parties to the 
Royal Commissioners, many forcible reasons were urged, in the daily 
papers, against the propriety of erecting a large building of bricks and 
mortar in Hyde Park. It was then that the author turned his attention to 
the matter; and he became at once convinced, that the least objectionable 
structure, to occupy a public park, would be an erection of cast iron and 
glass; whilst, at the same time, a building of this description would be the 

* From the London Journal of Arts and Sciences, for December, 1850. 


186 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

very best adapted for the purposes of the exhibition. The time for re- 
ceiving the designs had expired; but, from having the whole matter 
already digested, and the system of ridge-and-furrowj#a£ roofs so fully in 
his mind, it only required the adaptation of the principle, on a large scale, 
to suit the vast building for the exhibition. His plans were got up in 
about ten days, and ultimately received the approval of the Commissioners. 

The design for the building was planned — first, with particular consider- 
ation as to its fitness for the object in view, namely, the Exhibition of 
1851; secondly, its suitableness for the site proposed; and lastly, with a 
view to its permanence as a winter garden, or vast horticultural structure, 
or a building which might, if required, be again used at any future period 
for a similar exhibition to that of 1851. 

One great feature in the present building is, that no stone, brick, or 
mortar, need be used; but the whole is composed of dry material, ieady 
at once for the articles to be exhibited. By combination of no other 
materials but iron, wood, and glass, could this important point be effected; 
which, when we consider the limited period allowed for the erection of so 
stupendous a structure, may almost be deemed the most important object. 
The absence of any moist material in the construction, together with the 
provision made for the vapors which must arise and be condensed against 
the glass, enables the exhibitor at once to place his manufactures in their 
respective situations, without the probability of articles, even of polished 
ware, being tarnished by their exposure. 

It may be important here to state, that it is unnecessary to cut down 
any of the large timber trees, provision being made, by means of a cur- 
vilinear roof over the transept of the building, for them to stand beneath 
the glass, and by a proper diffusion of air they will not suffer by the 
enclosure. (Mr. Paxton here proceeds to describe the drawings of the 
plans of the building, as exhibited upon the walls of the room, shewing 
the original idea of the building and the improved design as it now stands.) 
The height of the centre aisle is 64 feet, the side aisles 44 feet, and the 
outside aisles or first-story 24 feet. The transept is 108 feet in height, 
and is covered with a semicircular roof, like that of the great conservatory 
at Chatsworth, in order to preserve the large elm trees opposite to Prince's 
gate. The whole number of cast iron columns is 3300, varying from 14 
feet 6 inches to 20 feet in length. There are 2224 cast and wrought iron 
girders, with 1128 intermediate bearers, for supportingthe floors of the gal- 
leries over the large openings of the aisles. The girders are of wrought iron, 
and those for the galleries are of cast iron. The fronts of the galleries are 
also supported by cast iron girders. The dimensions of the building are 
1851 feet in length, and 456 feet in breadth in the widest part. It 
covers, altogether, more than IS acres, and the whole is supported on 
cast iron pillars, united by bolts and nuts fixed to flanches turned perfectly 
true, and resting on concrete foundations. The total cubic contents of 
the building are 33,000,000 feet. The six longitudinal galleries, 24 feet 
in width, running the whole length of the building, and the four trans- 
verse ones, of the same dimensions, afford 25 per cent, additional exhibit- 
ing surface to that provided on the ground floor. This extra space is suited 
for the display of light manufactured goods, and will also give a complete 
view of the whole of the articles exhibited, together with an extensive 

Building for the Exhibition of All Nations. 1S7 

view of the interior of the building. In order to give the roof a light and 
graceful appearance, it is built on the ridge-and-furrow principle, and 
glazed with British sheet glass, as previously described. The rafters are 
continued in uninterrupted lines the whole length of the building. The 
transept portion, although covered by a semicircular roof, is also on the 
angular principle. All the roof and upright sashes being made by ma- 
chinery, are put together and glazed with great rapidity, — for, being 
fitted and finished before they are brought to the place, little more is 
required on the spot than to place the finished materials in the positions 
intended for them. The length of sash-bar requisite is 205 miles. The 
quantity of glass required is about 900,000 feet, weighing upwards of 400 
tons. All round the lower tier of the building, however, will be boarded 
with fillets planted on in a perpendicular line with the sash-bars above. 

The gutters are arranged longitudinally and transversely: the rain-water 
passes from the longitudinal gutter into a transverse gutter over the gir- 
ders, and is thus conveyed to the hollow columns, and thence to the drains 
below. As these transverse gutters are placed at every 24 feet apart, and 
as there is a fall in the longitudinal gutters both ways, the water has only 
to run a distance of 12 feet before it descends into the transverse gutters, 
which carry it off* to the hollow columns or down-pipes. The grooves 
for carrying off' the moisture which condenses on the inside of the glass 
are cut out of the solid; in fact, the whole gutter is formed by machinery 
at one cut. The gutter is cambered up by tension-rods, having screws 
fixed at the ends, so as to adjust to the greatest nicety, as is the case with 
the wrought iron girders which span the Victoria Lily House. 

Many experiments were tried in order to find out the most suitable 
floors for the pathways of horticultural structures. Stone was objection- 
able, chiefly on account of the moisture and damp which it retained. The 
difficulty of getting rid of the waste from the watering of plants was also 
an objection; but perhaps the greatest was the amount of dust from 
sweeping. It likewise appeared that close boarding for pathways was 
open to many of the same objections as stone; for although damp and 
moisture was in part got rid of, yet still there were no means of immedi- 
ately getting rid of dust. These various objections led the author to the 
adoption of trellised wooden pathways, with spaces between each board, 
through which, on sweeping, the dust at once disappears, and falls into the 
vacuity below. Whilst the accomplishment of this point is most important 
in plant-houses, it is doubly so with the industrial building, where there 
will be such an accumulation of various articles of delicate texture and 
workmanship. Before sweeping the floors, the whole will be sprinkled 
with water from a movable hand-engine, which will be immediately 
followed by a sweeping machine, consisting of many brooms fixed to an 
apparatus on light wheels, and drawn by a shaft. Thus a large portion 
of ground will be passed over very quickly. The boards for the floor 
will be 9 inches broad and li inches thick, laid half an inch apart, on 
sleeper joists 9 inches deep and 3 inches thick, placed 4 feet apart. This 
method of flooring, then, possesses the following advantages: — It is very 
economical; dry, clean, pleasant to walk upon; admits of the dust fallino- 
through the spaces; and even when it requires to be thoroughly washed^ 
the water at once disappears betwixt the openings, and the boards be- 

188 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

come almost immediately fit for visiters. The galleries will be laid with 
close boarding. 

The ventilation of the building has been most carefully considered, and 
a most copious supply of pure air is provided. Four feet round the whole 
of the basement part of the building is made of louvre boarding; and at 
the top of each tier a similar provision of 3 feet is made, with power to 
add an additional quantity if required. In the centre aisle, also, the air 
will be plentifully admitted. 

By simple machinery the whole of this ventilation can be regulated 
with the greatest ease. The advantages of this kind of ventilation are 
several. Louvre boards are very simple in construction; they can be 
opened and closed instantaneously with the greatest readiness; they nicely 
distribute the air, and yet admit a large volume of it; and, from the man- 
ner in which they are placed over each other, they effectually prevent the 
entrance of wet in rainy weather. 

In order to subdue the intense light, in so large a building covered with 
glass, all the south side of the upright parts, and the whole of the angled 
roof, will be covered outside with canvas or calico, so fixed as to allow 
a current of air to pass between the canvas and the roof. In very hot 
weather, water may be poured on, which will very much assist in cooling 
the temperature within. Provision will be made to use the Indian plan 
of ventilation, if the heat is so intense as to render it desirable to have 
the temperature cooler than out of doors. A house was fitted up last sum- 
mer at Chatsworth, as an experimental place to try this mode of ventila- 
ting, when it was found to answer the purpose admirably. The tempera- 
ture was reduced in one hour from 85° to 78°, without any other means 
being used to increase the draft through the building. This sort of 
covering offers the following advantages: — the brightness of the light 
will be tempered and subdued; the glass will be protected from the possi- 
bility of injury by hail; the screen being placed on the outside will render 
the building much cooler than if it were placed inside; and through this 
provision the ventilation can be regulated at pleasure. From the side 
galleries, running the whole length of the building, there will be grand 
views of the goods and visiters below; whilst the transverse galleries in the 
middle and at the ends will afford ample means for general supervision, and 
will serve to communicate between the side galleries. Magnifying glasses, 
working on swivels, placed at short distances, will give additional facility 
for commanding a more perfect general view of the Exhibition. After 
the Exhibition is over, the building might be converted into a permanent 
winter garden, and have carriage drives and equestrian promenades made 
through it. Pedestrians would have about two miles of galleries, and 
two miles of walks upon the ground floor, and sufficient room would then 
be left for plants. The whole intermediate spaces between the walks and 
drives could be planted with shrubs and climbers from temperate climates. 
In summer the upright glass might be removed, so as to give the appear- 
ance of a continuous park and garden. A structure where the industry 
of all nations is intended to be exhibited, should, it is presumed, present 
to parties from all nations a building for the exhibition of their arts and 
manufactures that, while it affords ample accommodation and convenience 
for the purposes intended, would, of itself, be the most singular and 

Oil the Latent Heat of Water. 189 

peculiar feature of the exhibition: how far this has been accomplished, 
must be left to the community to decide. It will be seen that from the 
simplicity of the Exhibition building of 1851 in all its parts, together with 
the simplicity of the detail, its construction does not offer matter for much 
detail. The author, in conclusion, remarked, that structures of this kind 
are susceptible of the highest kind of ornamentation in stained glass 
and general painting; and that they may well be expected to come into 
almost universal use. This system of building, he said, is capable of 
application to manufacturing purposes, as well as general cemeteries; and 
even market-gardeners might advantageously employ it in the growing 
of foreign fruit for the London markets. In short, there is no limit to the 
uses to which it may be applied — no foresight can define the limits where 
it will end; and we may congratulate ourselves that in the 19th century, 
the progress of science and the spirit of manufacturers have placed at 
our disposal the application of materials which were unknown to the 
ancients, and thereby enabled us to erect such structures as would have 
been deemed impossible even in the early part of the present century. 

Several questions were then put to Mr. Paxton with reference to the 
details of his plan, which he answered apparently to the satisfaction of 
the meeting. 

Translated for the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Latent Heat of Water. 

In an article contained in the September number of the Annates de 
Chhnie et de Physique, M. C. C. Person has pointed out a necessary cor- 
rection of the determination of the quantity of heat which becomes latent 
in the melting of ice; — a correction which, although not very large, is yet 
interesting, and depends upon a somewhat curious fact. Dr. Black first 
determined the heat thus absorbed to be 80° Cent., (144° Fahr.) (That 
is, he determined that one pound of ice in melting, without change of 
temperature, would lower the temperature of 144 lbs. of water l°Fahr.) 
But not much confidence was placed in the accuracy of his result. Wilke 
found 72, (129-6;) Lavoisier and Laplace 75, both of which numbers 
were in disaccordance with the calculation of phenomena. Finally, the 
very carefully conducted experiments of Provostaye and Desains, con- 
firmed by those of Regnault, gave 79 (142'2) as the true result. It is 
this latter number which M. Person, admitting the entire accuracy of the 
experiments, proposes to correct. His objection is, that the whole heat 
absorbed by ice in melting cannot be determined by beginning the experi- 
ment at the temperature 0° (32° Fahr.) In fact, it is well known that 
in general, before any body melts, it becomes soft; and during this soften- 
ing there is an absorption of heat. In some cases, as in wax, the quantity 
of heat thus absorbed exceeds that taken up in the actual melting. The 
experiments of Regnault themselves shew, that when the initial tempera- 

190 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

ture of the ice was taken below 0°, (32° Fahr.,) the latent heat given 
was greater in proportion as this temperature was lower. Thus we have : 

Initial temperature of the ice, ■ — 0-06° 

« « —0-32 

" " — 0-51 

« " —0-61 

Latent heat of fusion, 


Thus at once demonstrating the accuracy of the experiments them- 
selves, which are found to contain the expression of the unobserved law, 
and sustaining the objection of M. Person. We give the result of M.Per- 
son's experiments with a calorimeter which he describes, the accuracy of 
which is proved by his determinations with it of the specific heat of w r ater 
and saline solutions — remarking only that the temperatures are all express- 
ed in Centigrade degrees, and the weight in grammes : 














+ 5-0 


— 2-94 








— 2-11 








— 3-27 








— 8-80 






— 3-6 


— 6-44 











M is the complete equivalent of the calorimeter in water. 

T the temperature of the water in the calorimeter at the beginning of 
the experiment. 

T' the temperature of the water in the calorimeter at the end of the 

a the quantity of heat which entered the calorimeter during the experi- 

t the initial, temperature of the ice. 

1 the quantity of heat absorbed by the ice in melting, expressed by the 
weight of water, of which this heat would raise the temperature one de- 
gree Centigrade. 

D the duration of the experiment in minutes. 

The latent heat of water at 0° (32°) may then be taken at 80 (144 
Fahr.) By two experiments with the same apparatus the specific heat of 
ice was found to be 0-4S. F. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

A Series of Lectures on the Telegraph, delivered before the Franklin Institute. 

By Dr. L. Turnbull. 1350-51. 

The term Telegraph is derived from the two Greek words t*. (Tele) 
and r s *<p» (Grapho), meaning "I write afar off." It is the name given to 
any mechanical contrivance for the rapid communication of intelligence 
by signals. Of late years the term semaphore (from Sema, (iv*,) a sign, 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 191 

and Phero, (««g«,) I bear,) has been introduced by the French, and fre- 
quently adopted by English writers. 

Although the art of conveying intelligence by signals was practised in 
the earliest ages, and was known even to the rudest savages; and though 
its importance is not only obvious, but continually felt, wherever govern- 
ment is established, it has been allowed to remain in its original state of 
imperfection down almost to the present day. The first notice of any 
method of this kind of communication is to be found in the 6th chapter 
.and 1st verse of the prophet Jeremiah. He says, "0, ye children of Ben- 
jamin, gather yourselves to flee out of the midst of Jerusalem; blow the 
trumpet in Tekoa, and set a sign of fire in Beth-heccerem. 

The proposed object of the telegraphic art is to obtain a figurative lan- 
guage, the characters of which may be distinguished at a distance. Barba- 
rous nations employed torches, fires on the tops of distant hills, hoisting 
of flags, carrier pigeons, drums, speaking trumpets, &c. More recently, 
since the invention of gunpowder, cannons and sky-rockets have been 
applied to the same use. 

The first description of a telegraph universally applicable, was given 
by Dr. Hooke, in the Philosophical Transactions for 1684. The method 
which he proposed, (for it w T as not carried into effect,) consisted in pre- 
paring as many different shaped figures, formed of deal, as, for example, 
squares, triangles, circles, &c, as there are letters in the alphabet. He 
exhibited them successively, in the required order, from behind a screen, 
and proposed that torches or other lights, combined in different arrange- 
ments, should supply their place by night. 

About twenty years later, Amontons, of Paris, exhibited some experi- 
ments before the royal family of France and the members of the Academy 
of Sciences, by which the practicability of the art was demonstrated. It 
was not until 1794 that these experiments were applied to any useful pur- 
pose, when the plan was adopted for conveying intelligence to the French 

The first telegraph actually used was the invention of Chappe. It con- 
sisted of a beam, which turned on a pivot in the top of an upright post, 
having a movable arm at each of its extremities; and each different position 
in which the beam and its two arms could be placed at angles of 45°, 
afforded a separate signal w T hich might represent a letter of the alphabet, 
or have some other signification that might be agreed upon. 

In the following year, 1795, several plans were submitted to the English 
Admiralty, of which, one proposed by Lord George Murray was adopted, 
and continued to be made use of down to the year 1816. It consisted of 
six shutters arranged in two frames, which being opened and shut accord- 
ing to all the different combinations which can be formed, afforded the 
means of giving sixty-three separate and distinct signals. 

In 1803, the French erected semaphores along their whole line of coast, 
formed of upright posts, bearingtwo, or sometimes three, beams of wood, 
each turning on its own pivot, one above the oilier. 

In 1807, Captain Pasley, of the Royal Engineers, published his Poly- 
grammatic Telegraph, differing from the French semaphore by having 
beams turning on the same pivot; and, in order to obtain a sufficient num- 


192 Mechanics , Physics, and Chemistry. 

ber of different signals, he proposed to erect two or three posts at each 

In 1816, Sir Home Popham considerably simplified this 
construction. His telegraph consists of merely two arms, 
movable on different pivots, on the same mast, as seen in 
the annexed figure. 

Lastly, in 1822 General Pasley still farther simplified 
its construction, by placing the two arms on the same axis. 
For day signals, the telegraph consists of an upright post 
_ of sufficient height, with the two arms movable on the 
same pivot on the top of it, and a short arm called the in- 
dicator, on one side; as seen in the annexed figure. Each arm can exhi- 
bit the seven positions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, besides the posi- 
tion called the stop, which points vertically downwards, and 
3 c N i] /> 5 is hid by the post. The use of the indicator is to show the 
order or direction in which the signals are to be reckoned. 
In order to adapt the telegraph to the purpose of making 
night signals, a lantern, called the central light, is fixed to 
the pivot on which the arms move, and one is also attached 
to the extremity of each arm. A fourth lantern is also placed 
on the extremity of the indicator. Motion is communicated 
to these arms by means of an endless chain passing over 
two pullies; one fixed to the arm itself, and turning on the same pivot, 
and the other on a pivot fixed to the lower part of the post, within the 
reach of the signal-man. The required positions are pointed out by a dial 
plate, the index of which is moved by a lever attached to the lower pulley. 
In the Report on Telegraphs for the United States, made at the request 
of the Hon. Levi Woodbury, Secretary of the Treasury, by the Committee 
on Science and the Arts of the Franklin Institute, the Committee say: — 

"We are disposed to recommend a much more simple instrument, nearly similar to one 
lately introduced by M. Chateau, in a line of telegraphs which the Russian government is 
erecting between Petersburgh and Warsaw, and which is described in a late number of the 
Petersburgh Transactions, by M. Parrot, together with a scheme of his own, almost 
identical with it, on which he had made successful experiments many years before. 

"This proposed telegraph consists of a single arm, or indicator, which should be about 
nine feet long and one foot wide, with a cross-piece at one end, about three feet long and 
one wide; the whole arm being movable about an axis at its centre. The arms are formed 
like Venetian shutters, and are painted a dead black; the apparatus and fixtures about it 
being white. 

"The movements may be communicated with ease and certainty, either by an endless 
chain passing over a wheel on the axis, and a wheel in the building; or by bevel wheels 
on the axis, and on a vertical bar passing from the building; or by a cog-wheel on the axis, 
and an endless screw on a vertical bar. 

"For night signals, three lamps are used; one swinging beyond the end of the arm, the 
other two beyond the ends of the cross-piece." 

Every system of telegraphic signals, according to this plan, is of ne- 
cessity accompanied with a telegraphic dictionary, containing the mean- 
ing of the different combinations of signs. They were defective, from 
inability to communicate all kinds of information, uncertainty in practice, 
a want of simplicity in operation, were too slow in conveying intelligence, 
and afforded no means for secresy in correspondence. The rapidity with 
which electricity traverses great lengths of conducting matter, coupled 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 193 

with the power which it possesses of deflecting electrometers, had at an 
early period led to the idea of employing it as a means of conveying sig- 
nals from place to place; and this system has, within the last few years, 
been brought to such a degree of perfection, as to render it more than 
probable, that ere long it will supersede all other modes of conveying in- 
telligence, not merely for telegraphic purposes, but also for many other 
similar and not less important uses. Soiled Lee. on Tel.) The peculiar 
properties of electricity upon which the action of the telegraph depend?, 
are its passage along conducting bodies, the power to render iron a tem- 
porary magnet, its capability to decompose chemical combinations, and 
cause deflection of the galvanometer needle. An electric telegraph is 
an instrument or apparatus which, by means of conductors of iron, copper, 
soil, or water, conveys intelligence to any given distance with the velocity 
of lightning. 

Previous to the publication of any inventions for this purpose, a num- 
ber of experiments had been made as to the transmission of electricity 
through considerable length of iron wire, water, and even soil. 

In 1729, Mr. Grey and Mr. Wheeler observed the instantaneous dis- 
charge of -electricity through some hundreds of feet of wire. 

In 1746, Winckler, at Leipsig, and Nollet and Lemonnier, at Paris, 
made numerous experiments on the transmission of electricity through 
water, earth, &c; in one case, wires of more than two miles in length 
were employed, (PJrilosophical Transactions, 1746.) 

In July, 1747, Dr. Watson, Bishop of LlandafT, together w r ith several 
other electricians, ascertained the passage of electricity through water, 
by sending shocks across the Thames; experiments which they subse- 
quently repeated on a still larger scale through the New River, at New- 
ington; and in August, 1747, they transmitted shocks through two miles 
of wire, and two miles of earth at Shooter's Hill. The passage of elec- 
tricity through water excited a great deal of interest, and these experi- 
ments were repeated in 1748, by Franklin, across the Schuylkill, at Phila- 
delphia; and in 1749, by De Luc, across the Lake of Geneva. 

Though electricity is the agent used in common by all telegraph ope- 
rators, its mode of application has been as manifold as the number of 
laborers in this most interesting combination of science and art. Those 
now in use, and before described by historians, can be included in three 
divisions; — taking them in the order of discovery and application, we have 
first the electric, in which simple frictional electricity was alone used; 
next the galvanic, where voltaic electricity was employed; and last, the 
electro-magnetic, combining the agencies of electricity and magnetism. 
The first was used during the period from 1745 to 1800; the second from 
1800 to 1825, the third from 1825 to the present time. From 1820 to 
1850, there have been no less than sixty-three claimants for different va- 
rieties of telegraph. 

The first electric telegraph appears to have been made about the year 
1786; though long before that time the vague idea of a magical magnetic 
telegraph appears to have been entertained, for the Roman Jesuit Strada, 
who lived from 1572 to 1649, in a curious book, dated 1617, entitled 
Prolusions, describes a fabled contrivance of two magnetic needles, at- 
tached to dials, bearing a circle of letters, and which possessed the pro- 

Voi. XXL— Tuihd Series.— No. 3.— Mahch, 1851. 17 

194 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

perty of always indicating the same letter, so that -when one needle was 
made to point to any particular letter, the other needle, however distant 
at the time, placed itself so as to point to the same letter. An account of 
this curious idea will be found in the Spectator, 241, and Guardian, 119. 

The first real attempt which seems to have been made to render elec- 
tricity available for the transmission of signals, is described by Moigno, in 
his Traite de Telegraphie Electrique. It is that of Lesage, a scientific 
Frenchman, who in 1774 established an electric telegraph at Geneva, 
composed of 24 metallic wires, separated from each other, and immersed 
in a non-conducting matter. Every wire corresponded with a particular 
electrometer, formed of a small ball of elder, suspended by a wire. By 
placing an electrical machine in communication with either of these wires, 
the ball of the electrometer which corresponded to it was repulsed, and the 
movement designated the letter of the alphabet, or whatever conventional 
signal it was wished to transmit. 

In the 1st volume, page 42, of Arthur Young's Travels in France dur- 
ing the year 1757, will be found the following description of an electric 

"Mr. Lomond has made a remarkable discovery in electricify. You 
Write two or three words upon paper; he takes them with him into a 
chamber, and turns a machine in a cylinder case, on the top of which is 
an electrometer, having a pretty little ball of pith of a quill suspended by a 
silk thread; a brass wire connects it to a similar cylinder and electrometer in 
a distant apartment, and his wife, on observing the movements of the cor- 
responding ball, wrote the words which it indicated. From this it appears 
that he bad made an alphabet of movements; and as the length of the brass 
wire made no difference, you could correspond at a great distance, as for 
example, with a besieged city, or for purposes of more importance." 

Electricity was generated and retained by the common machine and a 
Leyden phial. Having but one movement, and using an apparatus ex- 
tremely delicate, we must suppose this mode of communication to be 
limited and dilatory. 

In VoigVs Magazinehv 1794, Vol. ix., p. 183, there is a letter from Reus- 
ser, of Geneva, in which he describes an electric telegraph. In this contri- 
vance, a number of strips of tin foil were fastened on a glass plate, each 
strip having a different letter marked on it, and connected by carefully in- 
sulated wires inclosed in glass tubes, with a corresponding glass plate at a 
distance. Thus there was a separate wire for each letter, and one return 
wire for the whole series. Signals were transmitted by sending electric 
shocks through the different wires, and noting down the letters attached 
to the strips of tin-foil, where the sparks .were observed. The attention 
of the observer at a distant station was drawn by firing an inflammable 
air pistol attached to the apparatus, by means of an electric spark. 

"A similar and yet more practical proposition was soon after made by 
Professor Boeckman. He proposed to choose as the signals the sparks 
passing at the distant station, using only two wires, by which first one and 
then, after certain intervals, more sparks being combinedly grouped," in- 
dicating the particular letter, so as to get rid of the large number of 
wires used by Reiszer, and also the twenty-six glass plates; in the same 
manner as the alarms of fire are indicated by our State House clock. — 
(Dr. H. Schellen's Electro-Magnetic Telegraph, p. 46, 1850.) 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 


The Madrid Gazette of November 25th, 1796, states, that the Prince 
de la Paix, having heard that M. D. F. Salva had read to the Academy 
of Sciences, a memoir upon the application of electricity to telegraphing, 
and presented at the same time an electric telegraph of his own invention, 
desired to examine it; when, being delighted with the promptness and 
facility with which it worked, presented it before the king and court, 
operating it himself. After these experiments, the Infanta Don Antonio 
desired another more complete telegraph, and occupied himself in testing 
the quantity of electricity that would be required by the telegraph at dif- 
ferent distances, whether on land or water. 

Some useful trials were made and published in VoigV s Magazine. Two 
years after, the Infanta Don Antonio constructed a telegraph of great extent 
on a large scale, by which the young prince was informed at night of news 
in which he was much interested. He also invited and entertained 
Salva at court. According to Humboldt, a telegraph of this description 
w r as established in 1798, from Madrid to Aranjuez, a distance of 26 miles. 
Other writers affirm, that M. Betancourt established a line of telegraph 
between the same places in 1787, and worked it with frictional electricity. 
M. Cavallo published some experiments which he had made on the 
transmission of signals in 1795. (4th edition, Traite de Electricitie, pub- 
lished 1798, vol. m., page 285.) The most important of these consisted 
in firing gunpowder, phosphorus, and hydrogen, by electric sparks, at a 
distance of a few hundred feet. He adds, that the same might be done at 
the distance of many miles. 

Fig. l. Fig. 2. 

The next electric telegraph in order of dates, was that of Mr. Francis 
Ronalds, who in 1816 constructed one, by means of which he was ena- 
bled to send signals with considerable facility and rapidity, through a dis- 
tance of eight miles, using frictional electricity. He published a work in 
1823, describing his telegraph, and illustrating it with plates; also, several 
other electrical instruments of his invention. This plan was very simple; 
at either end of the wires was a clock, carrying a light paper disk, on 
which were marked the letters of the alphabet, and certain words and 
numbers. By means of a perforated cover, only one letter and figure 
were visible at a time, and, as the clock continued to go, every letter in 
turn was presented at the aperture to the view. As the clocks kept accu- 

196 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

rate time, it is evident that the same letter would always be visible at 
both clocks, and therefore that if an electric discharge were sent from one 
station to another, when a particular letter was exhibited on the dial, the 
observer at the other station would readily know the signal intended. 
The wires were buried under ground, in dry and well insulated glass 
tubes. The attention of the observer was, at the outset, drawn to the in- 
strument by an inflammable air gun fired by an electric spark, and the 
subsequent signals indicated by the divergence of two small pith balls 
suspended in front of the revolving disks, a distance of eight miles along 
a wire. 

Fig. 1 shows the form of the apparatus used at either end of the tele- 
graph. A, the air pistol; B, the dial, exhibiting one letter only through 
a slit; C, pith ball electrometer; D, conducting wire. Fig. 2, the dial 
without the slit, showing the letters and numbers upon it. 

Harrison Grey Dyer, an American, constructed a telegraph in 1827-8 
at the race course on Long Island, and supported his wires by glass insu- 
lators fixed on trees and poles. By means of common electricity, acting 
upon litmus paper, he produced a red mark, and then passed the current 
through the ground as a return circuit. The difference of time between 
the sparks indicated different letters arranged in an arbitrary alphabet, and, 
the paper was moved by the hand. — (BelPs Evidence in House's Case.) 

Like many preceding it, this instrument appears to have been little more 
than a philosophical toy, — frictional electricity being too easily dissipated, 
rapid and incontinuous in action, confined with great difficulty to conduc- 
tors, and devoid of that dense, energetic, yet almost imperceptible, force 
which renders galvanic electricity so available in this art. His instrument 
is far inferior to that of Soemmering, invented twenty years before, and 
indicates a want of proper regard for, or information of, the discoveries 
of Galvani, CErstead, Ampere, and a host of others. 

Henry Haighton, of England, secured a patent in September, 1844, for 
certain improvements in electric telegraphs. 

"The object of this invention being to adapt a system of telegraphing 
to common or frictional electricity, the inventor uses for this purpose a 
Leyden battery charged with Armstrong's hydro-electric, or other power- 
ful electric machine. For the purpose of regulating the number of dis- 
charges sent, the nature of the charges as to positive and negative, and 
the times at which the discharges are transmitted, an instrument is em- 
ployed which admits of various modifications according to circumstances. 
By this invention, it can be shown that, in ten discharges, any signal out 
of a number of sixteen thousand may be made; and by thirty discharges, 
any one of more than a thousand millions. 

"The method of reading the signals at the terminal point is by means 
of two wires, one communicating with the point of transmission, and the 
other with the earth; they are placed at right angles to a sheet of paper 
which is moved along by machinery, so that each discharge may traverse 
the surface, and penetrate the substance of the paper close to the wire 
giving out the negative fluid. The paper is colored with chromate of 
lead, and moistened with sulphuric acid, to expedite the passage of the 
spark; and by this means the sparks leave upon the paper a register of 
the signals that have been made." — Lond. Mech. Mag., Vol. xiA\.,p. 122. 

To be Continued. 


Preparation of Spongy Metallic Lead, and Us Application to Galvano 
Plastics. By Professor Bolley.* 

The following is the method which Professor Bolley adopts for preparing 
sheets of lead: — He coats, as uniformly as possible, and to a thickness of 
from 2 to 3 centimetres, an even plate of zinc, with a thick paste of 
sulphate of lead ground with water. This plate of zinc is laid upon a 
dish, filled with a (not quite saturated) solution of marine salt, in such 
manner that the plate may only dip in the upper portion of the solution, 
but yet sufficiently deep to be entirely covered thereby. Upon this paste 
of sulphate of lead is ordinarily laid another thin sheet of zinc. By opera- 
ting in this manner it would appear that the operation is most effectually 
accelerated, and that the salts formed, instead of remaining in the lead, 
fall to the bottom of the solution. At the expiration of three days (which 
period is, however, sometimes extended to eight or ten) the mass, which 
is from 2 to 3 centimetres in thickness, is completely transformed into 
metallic lead. This mass, still saturated with the solution of marine salt, 
and lying upon the plate of zinc, is now placed in a vessel full of hot 
water in order to extract the salts, and the lead which remains constitutes 
a soft coherent mass, capable of receiving a permanent impression, even 
from the finger, and presenting metallic lustre when but lightly rubbed 
with a hard polished body. 

On being submitted to the action of a powerful press, this mass is 
transformed into a solid sheet of elastic lead; or it may be made to take 
any desired form with the greatest nicety, on being compressed into moulds 
or on to models. 

This latter property led M. Bolley to make some experiments with the 
view of applying this substance to galvano-plastics. He obtained from it, 
by means of pressure, copies of seals, coins, &c; and these answered 
perfectly well the purpose of matrices for galvanic precipitation, after 
being gilt or silvered; but whether from want of time or patience, or of a 
sufficiently powerful press, M. Bolley could not succeed in obtaining good 
deposits of copper upon the leaden moulds. The reason of this is, that 
the copper enters the pores of the lead, and it is only by applying very 
powerful pressure to the lead, or perhaps by coating it with silver, and 
thereby stopping up the pores, that the infiltration of the copper could be 
entirely prevented. From the same cause, when it is required to remove 
the metallic deposits, the leaden model is always sacrificed, as there will 
always remain adherent particles of copper, which can only be removed 
by acetic acid. 

Variation in the Melting Point of Ice. \ 

Mr. James Thompson, of Glasgow, and his brother professor, Win. 

Thompson, have shown that water, and all bodies which expand in 

solidifying, liquify or solidify at a lower temperature as the pressure is 

greater. For water, if we call t the Fahr. degrees of temperature below 

* From the London Journal of Arts and Sciences, for November, 1850. 
t From the London Railway Magazine, No. 602. 


198 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

32° at which water freezes or ice melts, and n the number of atmos- 
pheres added to the common atmospheric pressure, they give us the fol- 
lowing equation : — 

t = -0135n. 
According to this it would take 74 additional atmospheres of pressure, or 
about half a ton weight, or a pressure equal to a depth in water of 2200 
feet (going on for half a mile) to lower the temperature of water freezing 
one degree Fahr. 

We insert the above for the purpose of appending Prof. Cresson's ingenious specula- 
tions on the effects of this law, — supposing it to be proved to be a law, which we must 
confess does not appear to us at all to result from Prof. Thompson's experiment. F. 

Prof. Cresson made some remarks upon the experiments of Prof. 
Thompson, of which an account is given in a recent number of the Lon- 
don and Edinburgh Philosophical Magazine, and which Prof. T. believes 
to show that the temperature of congelation of water and other bodies 
that expand at the moment of solidification, is raised proportionally to 
the increase of pressure to which they are subjected, the ratio of tem- 
perature to pressure being for water ^th of a degree of Fahr. scale for 
10 additional atmospheric pressures. 

Mr. C. presented to the notice of the Society a speculation into which 
he had been led on the subject, showing the effect that such a law might 
produce in causing water to retain the state of a solid at a very high 
temperature. For example, if a continuous channel, admitting atmos- 
pheric communication, should exist in the crust of the earth to the depth 
of seventy miles, the pressure of the atmospheric column would exceed 
fifteen million pounds on the square inch, and according to Prof. T. water 
should remain solid at a temperature above 10,000° Fahr., a heat far 
above that of molten iron. — Proc. Am. Phil. Soc, Nov. 15, 1850. 

Specification of the Patent granted to Gustave Eugene Michel Gerard, 
of Paris, in the Republic of France, for Improvements in Dissolving 
Caoutchouc (India Rubber) and Gutta Percha. — Sealed May 7, and en- 
rolled October 7, 1850.* 

The invention consists in certain means of dissolving India rubber. 
Heretofore all solutions of India rubber, whether clear or thick, have 
preserved a great coherence and elasticity; the solvent, whatever it may 
have been, has always expanded very largely the gum, and it is not until 
after this has taken place with the gum that the real act of dissolving the 
gum commences: for this reason a large quantity of the solvent is re- 
quired. To endeavor to remedy these inconveniences, and to have the 
solution of a thick substance, the India rubber has been heretofore ex- 
panded in the solvent, and pressed afterwards, by means of cylinders; 
the solution obtained by this process preserves a very great cohesion and 
elasticity. By the process to be afterwards described, I obtain caoutchouc 
or gutta percha, or the two combined in a state of solution as thick and 
* From the London Repertory of Patent Inventions, for December, 1850. 

On Dissolving Caoutchouc and Gutta Percha. 199 

concentrated as may be required: and further, however thick it may be, 
yet it loses its tenacity and elasticity, and will assume the form of paste 
after the evaporation of the solvent, and retake all its former properties. 
My process consists in mixing with the solvent, of whatever nature it 
may be, a certain quantity of alcohol, and afterwards to macerate the 
caoutchouc or gutta percha; they will expand a very little, and at the end 
of twenty hours it will become in the state of paste, and may be moulded 
into any required form. I prefer to employ as a solvent sulphuret of 
carbon and chloroform, sulphuric ether, naphtha, essential oils of coal, 
or turpentine, and to which I add from five to fifty per cent, of alcohol. 
I then mix the caoutchouc in all proportions, from equal parts up to thirty 
parts of the alcoholized solvents to one part of the caoutchouc, according 
to the thickness of the solution required; after one or two days I submit 
the paste to the process of masticating, according to the ordinary plan, 
if I would have an equal solution, and in case when it is made with 
small quantities of the solvents. In the contrary case, the heating be- 
comes altogether useless. I adopt the same system when heating gutta 
percha, and by these means completely purify it. I then dissolve it in 
the alcoholized sulphuret of carbon, and dilute it until it arrives at the 
state of thick syrup of sugar, and leave it to remain in that state for three 
or four days. The impurities will deposit themselves or swim on the 
surface. I draw off' the centre part, which gives the gutta percha in a 
state of complete purity. Thus it will be seen that the character of the 
invention is the mixture of alcohol with the solvent used for dissolving 
caoutchouc. Alcohol, as is well known, being the liquid w r hich precipi- 
tates most quickly India rubber from its solutions; it is this property of 
the alcohol which 1 have applied to this purpose. In causing the alcohol, 
by means of a solvent, to enter into the interior parts of the caoutchouc, 
or to better express it, I detach all the adherent p.toms which form the 
mass of the caoutchouc, as will be easily seen in a clean solution, to 
which is added the alcohol; these particles become less adherent among 
themselves, and are easily separated by pressure, which can be given, 
preferring always the form resulting from this pressure, and not returning, 
as with the caoutchouc, to their ordinary form. The solvent and the 
alcohol being evaporated, the rubber will return to its original state. The 
alcohol I prefer to employ to mix with the solvents, such as spirit of 
wood, oil of potato, and all liquids which possess the properties of alco- 
hol; but it would be difficult to define all the liquids which would act 
according to my invention for the purpose of precipitating the caoutchouc 
for its solutions. I should comprise all liquids which have not the pro- 
perty of dissolving the India rubber, and which can be introduced into 
the gum by means of a solvent. I have, therefore, only indicated those 
which experience has proved to be successful, but I wish it to be under- 
stood that the principle of my invention is, the causing matters which 
are not of a solvent nature to be introduced into the body of the rubber 
by means of a solvent, and having the property to disunite the parts con- 
stituting the mass of rubber and destroy the adherence of the particles, 
whether these matters are combined with the solvents or introduced by 


The Copying Electric Telegraph* 

The working of the machine is as follows : — The message is written 
with sealing-wax varnish on tinfoil, and then applied to the transmitting 
instrument, w T hieh consists of a cylinder, on which a point presses, that 
point being in connexion with the voltaic battery. The receiving instru- 
ment at the other end has a cylinder and point exactly corresponding 
with that of the transmitting one. On the receiving instrument, a slip of 
paper, moistened with muriatic acid and prussiate of potash, is placed, 
and on which a point presses as on the transmitting instrument. The 
point of the receiving instrument consists of steel wire. When the elec- 
tric current passes through both instruments, a mark is made on the paper 
by the decomposition of the muriatic acid, and a deposition of iron takes 
place on the paper. When the instruments are in action, the point of the 
transmitting instrument, by passing over the varnish writing, comes in 
contact with the voltaic battery. At the parts where the varnish writing 
occurs, the circuit is interrupted, and a blank is left on the receiving in- 
strument; but when it rests on the tin foil, a blue mark is left. As the 
point passes over each line of writing in different parts, the whole letters 
are formed by a succession of lines. It is stated by Mr. Bakewell, that 
it is essential to the completeness of this process that the two instruments 
should move exactly together, and this desideratum is secured by the 
regulating power of an electric magnet. — Morning Chronicle. 

There seems to be some doubt in England as to the true inventor of 
this telegraph. We can only say that we have had in our possession for 
two years, a working model of a telegraph answering exactly this de- 
scription, and invented by Mr. Bain. In model the apparatus w r orks 
perfectly well; but we are not aware that it has ever been practically ap- 
plied on an extended scale. Ed. 

Universal Meridian.] 

I have been much interested lately by what has appeared in the French 
journals, and been referred to in your columns, relative to a proposal for 
the establishment of a Universal Meridian. 

The desirableness of such an object will no doubt be admitted by all. 
The difficulty of carrying it out seems to arise from the mutual jealousy 
of various governments. While considering the subject, the following 
thoughts have crossed my mind in connexion with it : 

Would it not be desirable to fix the new first meridian in that part of 
the world where travelers have to change their reckoning ? This change 
takes place, as we learn from Simpson's Voyage round the World, in pass- 
ing from the British to the Russian settlements in Northwestern America, 
in or about longitude 130° W. Thus, when the Russians are celebra- 
ting their Sabbath, the British close at hand are yet laboring on their 
Saturday. For, the former, having traveled eastward against the sun's 

* From the London Railway Magazine, No. 601. 
| From the London Athenscum, December, 1850. 

On a Universal Meridian. 201 

course, have gained in time, — and the British, going westward, have lost. 
The earliest commencement, therefore, of any given day is with the Rus- 
sians in Northwestern America, — and the latest with the British in the 
same quarter of the world. 

Thus, suppose it was agreed that at the first moment of next Christmas 
day — i. e. as soon as the clock had struck twelve on the night of Decem- 
ber 24th — a gun should be fired at every government station, — this gun 
would be fired first by the Russians to the west of longitude 130° W., 
when it would be about noon of December 24th, N. S., at Moscow, about 
8 A. M. of the same day in Britain, about 3 A. M. at Washington, and 
the beginning of December 24th in Vancouver's Inland, — where, accord- 
ingly, the gun would not be fired till twenty-four hours had elapsed from 
the time of its being fired by the Russians close at hand. 

Again, would there not be less risk of confusion if the present method 
of reckoning longitude, both east and west, were given up, and in future 
all longitudes were marked as loest only from the universal meridian fixed 
as above, where the day is first reckoned ? According to this plan, if 
Queen Charlotte's or Pitcairn's Island were fixed on for the first meridian, 
Yarmouth Roads would be marked as in longitude 225°, — i. e. west, of 
course, and fifteen hours later in time. 

If, however, it should be thought better not to give up the distinctions 
of east and west longitude, and to retain the universal meridian in the 
Old World, there is one spot which suggests itself as very appropriate, 
both from its associations, and as being also just opposite to that meri- 
dian where the change of reckoning is experienced. It is Jerusalem. The 
meridian of Jerusalem would surely excite as little jealousy as possible. 
At any rate, all Christians and Jews would agree, doubtless, to use it. I 
am not aware with whom the settlement of such a question lies; but the 
subject would surely be most appropriately discussed at the time of the 
Great Exhibition next year, when so many learned men will be collected 
from all parts of the world. If any decision should be arrived at, there 
might follow from it a scheme for establishing on some point of that me- 
ridian an "Observatory of all Nations," on a large scale, and supported 
by various governments — a spot sacred to science, declared to be invio- 
late by mutual agreement, and thus secured from the fears of war. 

I am, &c, E. M. J. B. 

The best first meridian would, in our opinion, be that of the Cape of 
Good Hope, because — 

1st, It is the location of an excellent observatory, well situated for ob- 
serving, and already celebrated for its results. 

2d, The meridian passes through Europe near the most important ob- 
servatories of the world, by means of which corresponding observations 
would be easily and accurately obtained. 

3d, It passes for a very great part of its length overland, and cuts the 
ocean only at the Cape of Good Hope, which is the point of division be- 
tween the two great oceans. Hence the Atlantic navigator is not required 
to change the denomination of his longitude, (if it be not agreed upon 
to reckon around the whole circle,) and although this be necessary in 
the voyages to China or India, yet it takes place at a point where ships go 
near to the land, and can easily take a new departure. It is true, 

202 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

that in our present method of reckoning, the meridian will cut the Pacific 
Ocean; but this difficulty is common to all possible meridians, which do 
not commit the greater error of cutting the Atlantic, and can only be 
avoided by reckoning longitude, as it ought to be reckoned, from 0° 
by the east through 360°. Ed. 

The First Idea of the Electric Telegraph. By N. S. Heineken.* 

In the number of the Philosophical Magazine for May, I observe that 
Professor Maunoir claims for his friend Dr. Odier the first idea of the 
electric telegraph. I herewith send you a translation from a German 
work by Schwenter, entitled Delicice Phyisco-Mathematicce, and published 
in 1636, from which it will appear that the crude idea of the electric 
telegraph was entertained upwards of a century before the period alluded 
to by Professor Maunoir. Indeed, CErsted's grand discovery was alone 
wanting to perfect the telegraph in 1636. The idea, in fact, appears to 
have been entertained prior even to this date, for Schwenter himself 
quotes from a previous author. 

Sidmouth, J\ov. 12, 1850. 

"How two People might C ommunicate with each other at a Distance by means of the 

Magnetic Needle. 
"If Claudius were at Paris and Johannes at Rome, and one wished to 
convey some information to the other, each must be provided with a 
magnetic needle, so strongly touched with the magnet that it maybe able 
to move the other from Rome to Paris. Now suppose that Johannes and 
Claudius had each a compass divided into an alphabet according to the 
number of the letters, and always communicated with each other at six 
o'clock in the evening; then (after the needle had turned round 3| times 
from the sign which Claudius had given to Johannes) if Claudius wished 
to say to Johannes, 'Come to me,' he might make his needle stand still, 
or move till it came to c, then to o, then to m, and so forth. If now the 
needle of Johannes' compass moved at the same time to the same letters, 
he could easily write down the words of Claudius and understand his 
meaning. This is a pretty invention; but I do not believe a magnet of 
such power could be found in the world." 

Quoted from "the Author" by Schwenter, in his Delicice Physico- 
Mathematicce, p. 346. 1636. 

JVew Method of Producing Plates for Printing Ferns, Sea Weeds, §*c. 
By Ferguson Bkanson, M. D.f 

A piece of gutta percha, free from blemish, and the size of the plate 
required, is placed in boiling water; — when thoroughly softened, it is to 
be taken out and laid flat upon a smooth metal plate, and immediately 
dusted over with the finest bronze powder used for printing gold letters. 

* From the London, Edinburgh, and Dublin Philosophical Magazine, for December, 1850. 
f From the London Athenxuin, December 21, 1850. 

On tlie Boiler Explosion at Halifax. 203 

The object of this is threefold : — to dry the surface, — to render the sur- 
face more smooth,— and to prevent adhesion. The plant is then to be 
neatly laid out upon the bronze surface, and covered with a polished 
metal plate, either of copper or of German silver. The whole is then 
to be subjected to an amount of pressure sufficient to imbed the upper 
plate in the gutta percha. When the gutta percha is cold, the metal 
plate may be removed, and the fern gently withdrawn from its bed. From 
the beautiful impression of the fern left in the gutta percha, a cast in 
brass may be readily taken. As soon as the surface of the brass cast has 
been burnished — of course, carefully avoiding the impression — it is ready 
for the copper-plate printer. If the printer skilfully mixes the ink to the 
tint of the fern, a print is obtained scarcely to be distinguished from the 
plant itself. The novelty of the process consists in causing the plant, so 
to speak, to engrave itself — and also in the substitution of a cheap cast- 
ing in brass for an expensive copper-plate engraving. Electrotype plates 
may be deposited on the bronzed gutta percha, and a similar result ob- 
tained; but I have found the brass casting to answer equally well, and it 
has the advantage of being more durable, cheaper, and more expeditious. 
I send for your inspection several prints of ferns produced by this 

Sheffield, December 18, 1850. 

An Account of the Photometric Process adopted by M. Pernot, Director 
of the Grenelle Gas Works, at Paris * 

The ordinary mode is, by throwing the reflection of each light on an 
opaque screen, bringing them to the same degree of intensity, and then 
by comparing the respective foci calculating the power of each light. 
M. Pernot throws the two lights on a transparent screen, and the observer 
standing behind, lights the reflections with a third light. If the two 
lights are equal, they disappear at the same time; if not, one of them 
remains. He likewise employs machinery, so as to move the lights on 
trial to arrange the foci. 

Verdict of the Jury in the Case of the Boiler Explosion at Halifax.^ 

The trial of Samuel Firth, one of the proprietors of the Lily lane Mill, 
Halifax, and Joseph Helliwell, the engine tenter, for the manslaughter of 
12 persons, through the explosion of a steam engine boiler, will not take 
place until the spring assizes at York. The two prisoners have been 
admitted to bail — each in 200/., with four sureties of 100/. each. As the 
result of the coroner's inquest, as well as the alleged cause of the explosion, 
is of considerable interest,we append a copy of the verdict of the jury: — 
"We find the explosion to have resulted from the improper and excessive 
generation of steam in the boiler, which, from the imperfect condition of 
the cotter and lug of one of the cross stays, along with other serious defects, 

* From the London Architect, for December, 1850. 
+From the London Mining Journal, No. 801. 

204 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

was at the time in a very unsafe state, arising from the culpable negligence 
and want of attention on the part of Samuel Firth and Joseph Halliwell; 
against both of whom we return a verdict of manslaughter." The jury- 
appended to their verdict the following very excellent suggestions: — "The 
jury deprecate the plan of erecting buildings over boilers. We also 
recommend very strongly the general adoption of safety valves on each 
boiler, on a construction which is best suited for the welfare and security 
of all persons connected with mills and machinery; and to impress upon 
all mill owners the necessity of employing properly qualified persons as 
engine tenters/' 

On the Economical Application of the Waste Gases from Blast Furnaces.'* 

Jn reference to Mr. Hu. L. Damsel's letter, published in last week's 
Journal, it appears singular that so trifling a decrease in the top of the fur- 
nace, caused by the iron cylinder, should be sufficient to account either 
for the scaffolding or decreased make of iron. We well know that a 
furnace will suddenly alter in its working and driving without any apparent 
cause, and such changes may be more owing to the chemical combina- 
tions going forward amongst the materials than to any alteration in their 
mechanical arrangement. A few degrees of heat, more or less, must very 
seriously interfere with the chemical operations going on in the body of 
the furnace; and it is very probable these changes and combinations in 
themselves both create and absorb heat, and, therefore, any interference 
or irregularity in the process must be very important to the proper working 
of the furnace. The first chemical action upon the ore, or mine, after it 
is charged in the furnace, is the converting of the solid oxygen into a 
gaseous compound, which would infer the abstraction of a vast amount 
of active heat, cooling the upper region of the furnace, and preventing 
the more fusible materials melting and running amongst the interstices of 
the coke, and ultimately causing the scaffolding and general derangement 
of the whole process. The melted ironstone, whenever this evil occurs, 
as it descends into the body of the furnace, or great laboratory, parts with 
its oxygen, and becoming thereby less or quite infusible, and cementing 
the mass of materials together, forms the scaffolding alluded to. As the 
materials beneath are consumed by the blast, a hollow space is left, and the 
direct action of the heat either melts the scaffold, or arch, or the weight 
of the superincumbent load breaks it clown, causing what are called slips. 
While this is going forward, the chemical action, and its consequent 
combinations, is destroyed. The blast acts upon the general body of 
materials in the lower part of the furnace, which are usually protected by 
the cushion of carbon in the hearth on which they rest. A black cinder, 
or glass of iron, is the result, and the whole arrangement completely 
destroyed. In some cases this cinder might be used over again with 
advantage, as it frequently contains a great per centage of iron. Should, 
however, the cylinder, as at present used, induce these evils, it might be 
made the present full size of the furnace, and a space all round, at least S 
inches, be taken out of the lining for collecting the gas. A less space than 
•From the London Mining Journal, IS'o. 801. 

Explosion of the Steamer "Knoxville " at Neio Orleans. 205 

this would restrict the supply of gas to the boiler, &c; the lining round 
the top of the furnace would still be sufficiently strong. 

When a furnace suddenly reduces its make from 150 to 120 tons of iron 
per week, it may arise from one of two causes; the burthen may be re- 
duced, giving a larger proportion of coal, or less blast be driven into the 
furnace. In the latter case no scaffolding or general derangement would 
follow, and it does not appear that this, therefore, is the cause. On the 
contrary, it is very probable that the abstracting or drawing out of the 
gases causes more air, or blast, to enter the furnace, and this may render 
necessary such an alteration of the burthen as will account for the reduced 
make. If a furnace were driving at its full speed and make, any increase 
in the quantity of the blast would, especially in the old Welsh antiquated 
furnaces, with large flat boshes, pass undecomposed above the cushion 
of carbon, and act upon the iron-making materials, which are awaiting 
the time when they will reach the melting region — viz.: the bottom of the 
boshes, and run through the unmixed fuel into the hearth. No furnace 
can work properly unless all the blast is thoroughly and completely de- 
composed before it reaches and mixes with the iron ore, and for this reason 
it is absolutely necessary to have such a body of fuel about the tuyeres as 
will absorb the whole of the oxygen, and thus protect the ironstone. It 
is also essential that this should be done in the hearth, for the temperature 
in the boshes, for the extra size of that part of the furnace, would be too 
low to melt the iron. Instead, therefore, of ad 1 ; ing more fuel, and reducing 
the make, it would be more desirable to reduce the quantity of blast, 
which could be done by lessening the size of the tuyere nozzles, till the 
proper quantity is ascertained for producing the maximum effect. 

December 24, 1850. S. W. S. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Explosion of the Steamer "Knoxville," at Neio Orleans. 

To the Committee on Publications. 

Gentlemen: — On the 17th of December, at 6h o'clock, P. M., the 
steamer "Knoxville," lying at the levee, exploded two (of her four) boilers, 
destroying many lives, and making a complete wreck of the boat, and 
also doing much injury to the other steamboats in the vicinity. Owing 
to the lateness of the hour, there were but few persons on the wharf, none 
of whom were injured. The "Knoxville" had undergone a thorough re- 
pairing, including patching the boilers; — it appears the boilers were fre- 
quently repaired during the last running season, and the inspector's certi- 
ficate was given of their being in good order.* 

The boat was about starting on her first trip, the steam had been up 
and blowing off freely, f and for some time before up to about 10 minutes 

* In justice to the Inspector, I send you his deposition, taken a short time before the ex- 
plosion, on a trial had to recover the cost of repairing these boilers; the exploded parts of 
the boilers do not support his opinion of the rivets, as remarkably few are broken, the 
sheets in the laps being torn from them. 

"fTo prevent misunderstanding, it is very rarely the practice to allow steam to escape 
through the safety valve; instead, the steam and exhaust valves of one end of the cylinder 
are raised, and the steam blows through and out of the escape pipe. 

Vol. XXI. — Third Skuibs.— No. 3. — Mahch, 1851. 18 

206 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

prior to the explosion. The boat was fast by her head-line to the wharf, 
both engine-cranks were at right angles, and the cam-rods hooked in 
ready for backing, but the engines were not in motion. The second en- 
gineer, who was on duty at the time, had given orders \o fire up, and the 
firemen were doing so; he was seen to try a gauge cock, and immediately 
after start the "doctor," {which had not been in motion for a long time 
before,) and as soon as the pumps began to work, the explosion took place. 
The first engineer, who had been up arranging the bell signals with the 
pilot, was descending at the time, and escaped with slight injury. 

After the explosion, the boat took fire; this was extinguished by the 
water from the boilers of the "Martha Washington" — the end of the blow- 
off pipe being broken off, the steam forced all the water through it on the 
deck of the "Knoxville." 

The diagram, Plate II., gives the position of the boats at the levee. 
A, the "Knoxville;" B, the "Martha Washington;" C, the "Griffen 
Yeatman;" D, the "Ne Plus Ultra;" E, F, the line of the levee. 

Appearance of the " Knoxville'''' after the explosion. — All of the main 
deck which was under the boilers, and most of the guards, are destroyed; 
everything overhead, forward of the engines, was carried away, and its 
innumerable fragments cover the surface of the water and the adjoining 
boats. The hull was so much injured as to cause it to fill with water, 
and it was only prevented from sinking by great exertions. On a piece 
of the larboard guard rested (in good order) a boiler 8 feet long and 30 
inches in diameter, which had been used to drive a small engine for hoist- 
ing freight out of the hold; this had no connexion with the other boilers. 
In the cavity of the hold, along with the rubbish, was a piece (6 x 12^ ft.) 
of the shell of a boiler, flattened out to nearly a plane surface; the steam 
drum, which extended across the top of the after ends of the boilers, is 
scarcely injured; it lies nearly fore and aft; part of a flue, slightly -oval, is 
in the hold; one end being under the water. A piece of shell, (6x7 ft.) 
flattened out, is a little forward of the breach on the main deck, and a 
small piece, about 2 feet square, is on the top of the "breaches," (of the 
chimnies,) which, with part of the chimnies, and fragments of the fire 
front, bricks, &c, cover the forward part of the deck; and also the large 
bell which was on the hurricane deck, — it and the captain (who was ring- 
ing it at the time of the explosion) being landed on the forecastle, without 
injury to either. 

The "doctor" is almost destroyed; it is partly turned over; alongside 

of the larboard engine lies a piece (see fig. 2) of a boiler, about 4 feet by 

12^ feet; it has several pieces of the cast iron half-head still fast to it. A 

little ahead of this piece, lies about nine feet of collapsed flue, bent thus 

«^ ^ in its length. The heaters, steam pipes, and engines 

^^\_^-^^ were slightly injured. A (new) manometer or pressure 
gauge was in good order; its cock communicating with the steam pipe 
was open at the time; the range of the scale was 160 lbs.; that is, it would 
indicate no higher. 

On the starboard side of the boiler deck of the "Martha Washington," 
at 6, is a part of the standing pipe which supports the after end of the 
boiler, and through which the supply water from the pumps enters the boiler. 
One inside boiler, 26 feet long, and 42 inches diameter, left the "Knox- 

Explosion of the Steamer "Knoxville" at New Orleans. 207 

ville" nearly at right angles, and, after breaking the guard of the "Martha 
Washington," its forward end passed upward and through the cabin of 
this boat, leaving a breach about 12 1'eet wide, and thence on, making its 
way through the side of the "Griffen Yeatman," and landed in the ladies' 
cabin bottom up; the shell is uninjured, except the holes of the joint of 
the standing pipe, the bolt-heads having been drawn through the sheet. 
What was the larboard flue is collapsed, and half of the back end is torn 
from the head. I was prevented, by the officers of the boat, from giving 
this boiler as thorough an examination as I wished. At c, on the side 
rail of the main deck, hangs the safety valve, the ends of the pipe con- 
necting it with the hoo middle boilers; — for it is usually so attached, in- 
stead of being on the steam drum, where it would have direct communi- 
cation with all the boilers; the lever, slightly bent, has the large weight 
on its extreme end, and the iron lever fixtures for raising or holding it 

The larboard outside boiler took its flight from the boat, end on, at 
an (horizontal) angle of about 120° from the course taken by the other 
boiler; at about 235 feet, at d, it dropped some pieces of light sheet iron; 
60 feet further, at e, it came in contact with the ends of the third tier of 
barrels of flour, slightly injuring them; 45 feet on, at _/, it passed through 
another pile of barrels, destroying many down to the first tier, and scatter- 
ing the flour over a large surface. Here it diverged about 18°, and it 
continued on about 200 feet more, passing between two posts; and stopped 
at g, without disturbing the surface of the ground on which it lay. 

This boiler is partly on one side, and is curved in its length and slight- 
ly flattened; it is much strained, and gives evidence of very inferior iron; 
the highest water line is well defined, and is just even with the tops of the 
flues. The starboard flue is in good order; the larboard one 1 is collapsed 
its whole length, and is partly torn from its after-hpad. This flue has 
been partially overheated; a part of the shell at m, fig. 3, (being the out- 
side,) has been overheated for about five feet; it is very irregular on the 
surface. There are many indentations, forming right angles, made by 
the rivets of the other boilers, (similar to those shown in the drawings of 
the "Louisiana,") and cuts or grooves, thus starting from an indentation, 
and also many straight grooves. All these have been made from the 
adjoining boiler leaving its bed first. At the front end at A, is the joint 
of a small steam pipe; the grummets under the nuts show no signs of 
extra heat at this part, as the fibres of the hemp is not harmed. At i 
two rivets are out, and cracks from hole to hole; at k the edge of the sheets 
is open (at places |th of an inch) nearly two-thirds around the boiler; at 
/, undulating and cracks; m, crack in the line of rivets for five feet around 
the shell, four .rivets are out. This part is flattened, and has been very 

The boilers are said to be only three years old. These prove that age 
is no criterion for soundness. I have seen better after having been in 
use twenty years. The heads are half wrought and half cast iron — a 
very objectionable plan. The boilers have had very bad usage; some of 
the iron is full ^ in. thick, and part is but a little over % in. in thick- 
ness; ranging in quality from very bad to good, (the samples are about 
the best.) Fig. 2 is full of holes and cracks, the bolt heads having torn 

£0S Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

the pieces out at n, which was the larboard chock joint; the blue lead of 
the joint is in good order. In the starboard chock p, or water communi- 
cation between the boilers, the blue lead of the joint has been melted 
out. Three pieces of the cast iron head is still attached to the shell. 
I send you a piece |-th of an inch thick from a. Fig. 4 shows nearly all 
of the half cast iron head, with a piece of the shell attached; this was a 
top half, and of course received no injury from the action of the fire; the 
sample sent was cut from the part marked r. 

The gas theory having almost evaporated, we have now, par excellence, 
"the state of the atmosphere," given as a reason for explosions; but in 
this instance I feel safe in stating the causes were, defective boilers, a defi- 
ciency of tenter, and ignorance on the pent of the management . That the 
water was low, is evident from the sharp sound of the explosion, and 
from the almost perfect boiler in its passage through the cabin of the 
"Martha Washington," scarcely soiling the white paint by water; none 
was discharged on the "Griffen Yeatman's" deck, or remained in the 
boiler; neither did the other boiler discharge any water in its track over 
the land. It also was dry. After the explosion, I conversed with men 
who had stood abreast of the boilers, on the larboard side of the "Knox- 
ville," and on the guard of the "Ne Plus Ultra," who were only par- 
tially scalded. Some who escaped uninjured were soaked with water, 
without being scalded. This may be accounted for by the deck freight, 
and other heavy articles, being thrown overboard, causing the river water 
to splash up and wet them. The water line, as seen in the boiler s, shows 
that the stupid and dangerous practice of carrying the water just above 
the flues was the custom on this boat. The blowing off of steam for a 
long time, and no water being pumped in to keep up the proper supply, 
it wasted away until it had got low enough to permit parts of the boilers 
to get dangerously hot; then setting the pumps to work and throwing in 
water, caused a wave to be produced, which, flowing over the over- 
heated portion of the boilers, flashed into steam, and their destruction fol- 
lowed the sudden increase of pressure. 

I will enlarge on what I stated in the case of the explosion of the 
"Louisiana," namely, "showing off" in front of the city, (this is the 
practice at all the principal points on the river.) The pernicious influence 
of this custom has been the cause of all the explosions at this landing 
within my recollection. Along with the uncertainty of the time of start- 
ing, (for the hour appointed in the advertisements is only a deception,) 
this "showing off" induces many to keep up steam to the highest point 
for hours before the time of leaving, and as many, having pretensions to 
the name of engineer, carry the working surface of the water just cover- 
ing the flues, and the steam as formed being allowed to pass off freely, 
as before mentioned, through the escape pipe of the engine, in many 
cases the water (as is common) rises and follows the current of steam, 
and it is found when too late that the water is dangerously low; fear of 
the loss of their situation prevents their extinguishing the fires, and they 
brave the risk. Good engineers are under the influence of this bad 
practice, for if they left the landing with slow fires, and as a consequence 
the boat did not do its best at the start, their reputation would suffer, for 
here the speed of the boat in passing the landing is considered by many 

./ourrm? franklin Institute 

Kim, J T Smes, flute 2. 

top part 

Explosion of the Steamer "Knoxville" at J\"ew Orleans. 209 

a test (of the boat,) and the merit of the engineer; hence, as long as 
public opinion compel good engineers to go against their convictions of 
what is right, the cheap and worthless ones (and there are too many 
such) will do so through ignorance, and explosions will still occur. 

Respectfully yours, A. C. Jones. 

New Orleans, January 10, 1851. 

Judicial Investigation in the case of the "Knoxville..''''* 

We lay before our readers the proceedings of a late judicial investiga- 
tion in relation to the boilers of the steamer Knoxville, had before Judge 
Strawbridge, of the Fourth District Court. 

It appears that in February last, F. Coan & Co. of Algiers, brought suit 
against the owners of the steamer Knoxville for the sum of $3G0 for 
patching and repairing her boilers. The defendants answered as follows: 

"The answer of William A. Violett, William T. Duncan and Thomas 
C. Charles, to the petition of F. Coan &, Co. respectfully shows, that except 
as far as hereinafteradmitting, they deny all and singular the allegations of 
plaintiffs' petition. And further answering, respondents further say, that 
they, with Briggs & Cramp, who live in Vicksburg, were owners of the 
steamboat Knoxville at the time when an agreement was made with 
plaintiffs respecting repairs to be made to the boilers of said boat; that the 
express understanding and agreement with plaintiffs was, that they should 
make the boilers of said steamer tight and sound, and should receive no 
compensation whatever unless they succeeded in doing so; that said F. 
Coan & Co. were made aware that previous attempts of others to make 
said boilers tight had not succeeded, and were told to examine and judge 
for themselves before undertaking it, and that if they did undertake it, it 
must be upon the aforesaid condition of making them perfectly tight and 
sound that they should be entitled to any compensation therefor; that they 
wholly failed to fulfil said condition, and are entitled to nothing under their 
agreement; that moreover their work was of no service or benefit to respon- 

\Ne make the following extracts from the testimony taken in writing on 
the tiial of the cause: 

Joseph Lovett, a witness for the defendants, sworn — "I am an inspector 
of boilers and machinery for this State, appointed by the Judge of the 
District Court of the United States for this District, under the statute of the 
United States. Is acquainted with the steamboat Knoxville. She is now 
lying on the other side of the river, where he visited her a few days ago. 
He inspected her boilers on the occasion of these repairs being made to 
her, and he thinks he then passed her as in good order. This was on the 
28th of January, 1850. lie has been called on several times since to 
inspect her, and has refused to pass her, until her boilers were repaired 
to his satisfaction. The defects of the boilers are in the iron; the iron is 
hard and brittle; the rivets brittle also, and small, and leak. Don't know 
that he examined all the iron, but examined such parts as were cut out. 
There are other parts of the boilers that now require to be cut out before 
* From the New Orleans Picayune. 


210 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

he can pass them. Don't know that he could pass them then, unless he 
was satisfied with the remainder. A boiler might be tight to-day and to- 
morrow might blow up, by the carelessness of the engineer. Should think 
that they had succeeded in making the boilers tight, but the old iron was 
brittle, and would not hold the rivets without leaking. There are many 
reasons why a boiler maker should not warrant a boiler — a boiler might 
be blown up, burnt out, or strained by the carelessness of an engineer, 
and it would be in the power of the owner in that way to keep the maker 
out of his money as long as he liked." 

Alexander Ballantine, a witness for plaintiffs, sworn. — "Is a boiler 
maker, and has worked at the business for five years. Worked on the 
steamer "Knoxville" for plaintiffs. Believes the work to have been a 
good job, considering the state of the boilers; the boilers were old and 
many cracks in them; the old boiler iron was very hard and many flaws 
in it. The boilers were in pretty good order, or appeared to be, when 
they quit working on them; there were some other places in the boilers 
which the engineer said he would have repaired; that he had not time 
then to have it done. Witness worked on the boilers twice. The second 
time the boat came in, they took out several rivets, opened some seams, 
and put new rivets in. Ten new pieces were put on the first time. The 
engineer said she leaked afterwards. Saw the marks of the steam on the 
iron the second time we worked on her. The boilers had either been 
strained or not well built in the first instance." 

James Whiting, witness for defendants, sworn. — "Was carpenter on 
the 'Knoxville' when the contract to repair the boilers was made with 
plaintiffs. Mr. Duncan, one of the owners of the boat, acted on behalf 
of the boat with Mr. Coan in making the contract. Witness noticed the 
state of the boilers after they were repaired. They leaked as bad on the 
first trip as before. Whilst witness was on the boat, plaintiffs worked on 
the boilers nearly every time she came to town, and the new work leaked 
nearly as bad as the old." 

The court, in giving judgment against the plaintiffs, said : — "I am 
satisfied that the plaintiffs did their best, and were not deficient in skill, 
but that their failure was owing to a radical defect of the iron of which 
the boilers were originally made, and could have been made tight by no 
skill whatever." 

This decision was rendered only on the 2d instant, and has not yet been 
made final, as a motion is now pending for a new trial. 


Proceedings oftJie Stated Monthly Meeting, February 20, 1851, 

Samuel V. Merrick, President, in the chair. 

Isaac B. Garrigues, Recording Secretary. ) 

Solomon W. Roberts, Corresponding Secretary. > Present. 

John F. Frazer, Treasurer. ) 

The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 


Donations were received from Hon. John Robbins, Jr., U. S. Congress; 
J. J. Greenough, Esq., Washington City, D. C; The Mercantile Library 
Association, St. Louis, Mo.; The Mercantile Library Association, City of 
New York; and Messrs. E. & J. Biddle, Solomon W. Roberts, and Zebulon 
Parker, Philadelphia. 

The periodicals received in exchange for the Journal of the Institute 
were laid on the table. 

The Treasurer's statement of the receipts and payments for the month 
of January was read. 

The Board of Managers and the Standing Committees reported their 

Candidates for membership in the Institute (16) were proposed, and 
those proposed at the last meeting (4) were elected members of the In- 

The Standing Committees for the ensuing year were nominated by the 
President, and appointed as follows: 

On Library. 

John Allen, 
George W. Farr, 
George Harding, 
George P. Herse, 
William S. Levering, 
William A. Kolin, 
Jacob D. Sheble, 
Charles E. Smith, 
George P. Whitaker, 
Dr. Geo. J. Ziegler. 

Cabinet of Minerals and 
Geological Specimens. 

M. II. Boye. 
Edwin Bishop, Jr., 
John F. Frazer, 
Wm. W. Flemming, 
Edwin Greble, 
Dr. B. H. Rand, 
Dr. L. Turnbull, 
John C. Trautwine, 
R. A. Tilghman, 
Dr. C. M. Wetherill, 

Cabin et of Models. 

John Agnew. 
H. P. M. Birkinbine, 
Joseph J. Barras, 
Henry Huber, Jr., 
Robert Lindsay, 
J. Yaughan Merrick, 
Prosper Martin, 
Thomas S. Stewart, 
Clement W. Smith, 
Thomas U. Walter. 

Cabinet of Arts and Manu- 

James C. Booth, 
John C. Copper, 
James Euston, 
Charles M. Ghrisky, 
William Harris, 
Peleg B. Savery, 
William P. Troth, 
Gustavus L. Thomas, 
Isaac S. Williams, 
Thomas J. Weygandt. 



John E. Addicks, 
John C. C reason, 
George W. Conarroe, 
Owen Evans, 
James P. Ellis, 
Thomas Fletcher, 
Henry H. Kelly, 
William D. Parrish, 
John H. Towne, 
Alan Wood. 


Joaqim Bishop, 
J. M. Cardeza, 
B. B. Gumpert, 
Dr. B. H. Rand, 
George W. Smith, 
Return Sheble, 
Dr. L. Turnbull, 
John Thornley, 
Eliashib Tracy, 
Dr. C. M. Wetherill. 

D. R. Ashton, 

Samuel W. Black, 
Dr. S. S. Brooks, 
Owen Evans, 
L. C. Francis, 

J. A Kirkpatrick, 
James S. Lippincott, 
B. B. M'Kinley. 
Charles S. Kaiid, 
John Simmons, 

Mr. G. W. Smith made some remarks respecting the fracture of the 
centre-shaft of the steamship "Atlantic," stating that similar accidents 
were by no means unfrequent in British, American, and other steamers, 
citing instances in confirmation. He then adverted to the mode of manu- 
facture of large masses of wrought iron by the hammer, showing that, 
when Hat bars were laid upon each other, the scale would not always 
escape from between them, being detained by the adhesion of the edges. 

212 Franklin Institute. 

He described the remedy of Mr. Nasmyth, — giving a curved surface to 
the bars, whereby the adhesion is first produced at the centre, and the 
scale driven out before the outward edges come into contact. 

Mr. Angus Macpherson, of Scotland, confirmed the statements as to 
the frequency of such accidents in English steamers, and described at 
length the method of arranging: the bars radially on a triangular swage, 
in the manufacture, for the purpose of forcing out the scale. 

Some discussion took place between Mr. Prosper Martin and Professor 
Frazer, respecting the properties of bars of iron when covered with cop- 
per, and the process of welding them attempted. The nature of the com- 
pound (alloy?) was also discussed, and a specimen of it for the next meeting 
was promised. 

The disclaimer of Messrs. Stil'man, of the Novelty Works, as to all 
responsibility in forging the centre-shaft of the Atlantic, which was not 
done according to their plan, was mentioned by the chairman. The sub- 
ject was further discussed by Messrs. Sewall and Williamson, Engineers 
U. S. Navy, and Messrs. Bartol and Towne, who concurred in the views 

Dr. Charles M. Wetherill presented the following analysis of the bitu- 
men from Pictou, N. S., presented at the last meeting:— 

The specimen handed me was of fine, black, glossy appearance, of conchoidal fracture. 
Density, 1*09; streak, black. The hygroscopic moisture was ascertained by heating in an 
oil bath to 120° C. The volatile combustible matter was then determined by raising to 
an incipient redness with covered crucible. The fixed carbon was determined by exposing 
to full red heat with uncovered crucible. As a black, porous, metallic coke remained with 
the ash, which was not burned away by long exposure to heat, the incrineration was com- 
pleted by covering the crucible, and introducing a slow current of oxygen. Although this 
part of the analysis was performed with great care, it was impossible to avoid a slight loss 
of ash. The results of the analysis are as follows: — 

Hygroscopic moisture, . . . 00-31 

Volume of combustible matter, . . . 59-32 

Fixed carbon, .... 40-23 

Ash, ..... 00-14 


Mr. Smith mentioned the recent discovery of bituminous coal in large 
quantities in Puget's Sound, Oregon, and adverted to the vast importance 
of this mineral in that locality, — being the first discovery of true coal in 
our territory on the Pacific. It had formerly been supposed that the de- 
posit of lignite, or brown coal, extended from Chili to the Arctic Ocean, — 
a length of formation without parallel in the globe. The discovery of 
true coal at two, if not three, points remote from each other, interrupts 
this continuity, as is now seen. 

Mr. G. W. Smith described the plans of Major Bache of the U.S. Topo- 
graphical engineers, for the formation of ice harbors in the Delaware by 
means of Mitchell's screw piles, which present an obstacle to the passage 
of ice in large masses through such harbors, leaving the water way clear, 
and thereby preventing the deposit of silt, a never-failing result of solid 
piers, even when sluices are employed in the common manner. 

The injurious changes which have taken place in the Delaware and other 
tide-water rivers, from the contraction of the stream producing immense 
deposits above and below such piers, were described at length, and the 

Monthly Meeting of tJie Franklin Institute. 


unscientific manner in which successive Boards of Wardens of the Port 
had authorized such obstructions was alluded to, and the importance of 
entrusting such functions solely to Boards of Engineers insisted upon. 
The capacity of screw piles to resist ice was illustrated by three years' 
experience at the Brandywine Screw Pile Lighthouse, in Delaware Bay, 
and their more general introduction for a variety of purposes strongly 
urged. The stability of the lighthouse on Minot's Ledge, near Boston, 
was also insisted upon, notwithstanding some exaggerated reports of its 
unstability which had been published in the daily press, the errors of 
which were pointed out. The causes of the destruction of the iron pile 
lighthouse on Bishop's Rock, off the Land's End, England, while in an 
incomplete state, were explained as by no means militating against the 
stability of such structures when properly made. Roman harbor piers in 
various parts of Italy, composed of piers and arches, permitting a flow of 
water through the harbors for the prevention of silt, were described, and 
especially one near the ancient Puteoli, were given from the examination 
made of them by the Chairman, — the piers being founded in a greater 
depth of water than any other structure on the globe, — about 126 feet. 

Messrs. Yerger & Ord, of Philadelphia, presented the following case 
and remarks : — 

This case is that of a gentleman born without feet, leaving stumps below the knee 
measuring 5 and 7 inches, winch deficiency of nature 
had been supplied by a pair of our Patent Metallic 
Skeleton Artificial Legs. From infancy to the age 
of about 7 years he had been in the habit of walking 
on his knees, all fours, and getting about in a man- 
ner that best suited his convenience; at the expira- 
tion of the above time, his parents, anxious to bet- 
ter his condition, employed a country mechanic, who 
made him a pair of wooden legs, and after encoun- 
tering numerous difficulties, he succeeded in gaining 
sufficient use to hobble about on them in an awk- 
waid manner. In December we constructed for him 
a pair of our most approved limbs, which we applied 
on the 19th of this month, (February.) The result 
has been most satisfactory. He now walks with 
great comfort, ease, and considerable rapidity, as- 
cending and descending a flight of stairs, one foot 
over the other, without much difficulty. 

The cut is a representation of the leg. It is con- 
structed of a series of cast-strel ribs and rings, each 
of which have a curved or semi-circular form, framed 
and united upon the principle of a lattice bridge or - 
arch, one piece bracing and sustaining the other, im- 
parting a great amount of strength and durability, £, 
and at the same time exceedingly light; the part be- "3 
low the stnmp being entirely open, prevents any ac- 
cumulation of hot air, moisture, and consequent ul- 
ceration of the stump. The foot is made of wood, with the natural action at the ankle 
and toe joints; the whole arrangement is so much simplified that it requires but little or 
no attention on the part of the wearer to always have his leg in good working 

Dr. Chas. M. Wetherill made some remarks on Drayton's mode of silver- 
ing glass. 

214 Franklin Institute. 

A specimen of a double bottle and stopper, made by Varnish, of Lon- 
don, silvered in the interior, it is believed, by Drayton's second process, 
(sealed December 4, 1848 — see Journal Frank. Inst., Vol. xvm., 3d 
series, p. 217,) was presented, and much admired. The blue glass of 
the greater part of the exterior was sufficiently opaque to conceal the 
silver ornamented cavities ground into it to a depth sufficient to reveal 
the inner colorless glass, thereby displaying the brilliant silver beneath to 
great advantage. 

Mr. G. W. Smith stated that he was now enabled to present to the 
Institute an account of the aggregate extent of all the railways in the 
United States which are finished, including those which will require the 
present season for their completion. They amount to the enormous ex- 
tent of ten thousand six hundred and eighteen miles. If the additional 
extent of those which will certainly be finished in the ensuing year be 
added, the extent will be upwards of twelve thousand six hundred 
miles, more than sufficient, if in one line, to reach round more than half 
the circumference of the globe, and exceeding the extent, in the aggre- 
gate, of all railways in the residue of the globe.* Mr. S. had been 
for many years engaged in these researches. 

Mr. Solomon W. Roberts said that he concurred in the opinion of 
Mr. Smith as to the number of miles of railroad which would be in use 
in the United States in the course of next year. He had studied this 
subject in the West with a good deal of care, and he would say that 
it was difficult for those who were only acquainted with the costly rail- 
roads constructed east of the Allegheny mountain, to appreciate the 
cheapness with which good railroads can be made in the States west and 
northwest of the Ohio river. In his opinion, in less than three years 
from the present time, there will be a continuous line of railroads from 
Philadelphia to the Mississippi river, at St. Louis, and also by Chicago, 
on Lake Michigan, to the Mississippi, at Galena; each line being more 
than a thousand miles long. He made some remarks upon the feuds and 
faction fights among the Irish laborers, and stated that on the Ohio and 
Pennsylvania Railroad, of which he is the Engineer, the great body of 
the laborers are Corkonians, and there has been but little difficulty in keep- 
ing good order, except in a few instances where contractors have em- 
ployed men from different parts of Ireland on the same section. 

Mr. J.Z. A. Wagner, of Philadelphia, presented a model of a feather- 
ing-blade propeller, the action of which was reciprocating, resembling 
the motion of two oars wholly immersed in the water. 

The hour having arrived for adjournment, and the business of the eve- 
ning not being concluded, the meeting adjourned until Tuesday evening, 
for the purpose of discussing the relative value of side wheels and pro- 
pellers, as instruments of propulsion for steamers. 

* It ia not improbable that between four and five hundred miles in addition may be 
finished by that time, but are not included in this estimate. 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 


The Committee on Science ami the Arts, constituted by the Franklin Institute of the State 
of Pennsylvania, for the Promotion of the Mechanic Arts, to examine a "Magnetic 
Gauge, for indicating the height of water in Steam Boilers," invented by Mr. George 
Faber, of Canton, Ohio, — Repout ;— - 

That they have examined the construction and operation of the same, and consider it 
to possess the following advantages : — Simplicity of construction and operation; freedom 
from friction, no portion of it working in a stuffing box; durability as to time of use — 
some that have been used four years are as perfect and act as well as when first put up. 

It indicates the exact height of water in the boiler, and the indication is visible. It indi- 
cates its own derangement, for when not working properly the needle becomes fixed, while 
it has a slight tremor when in action. 

Considering this gauge to possess the above advantages, and having tested it for nine 
months accurately, on a tubular boiler using 80 lbs. of steam, the Committee confidently 
recommend it to general use, considering it a valuable improvement, and one that will con- 
duce to the safety of steam boilers in general. 

By order of the Committee, 

William Haxilton, Actuary. 

Fh.iladelphia, February 13, 1851. 

Description of Faber' s Magnetic Water Gauge. 

The gauge consists of so few parts, and is so extremely simple, that a glance almost at 
the drawings will serve to make it understood. It consists of a heavy copper sphere or 
ball, made to withstand the required pressure; this ball floats on the water inside of the 
boiler, and is attached to a brass rod, cranked near one end, which passes through a long 
pipe or journal, terminating in a circular plate. The end of the rod extends a short distance 
beyond the plate, and is fitted to receive a steel magnet, having its positive and negative poles. 
The cranked end of the wire plays in the journal with perfect freedom, having no stuffing 
boxes or packing of any kind about it; hence there is no friction. 

Outside of the circular plate there is a cap fitted to screw on, forming a chamber for 
the magnet to work in. The front of this cap has a recessed space, on the front part 
of which a dial or index is put. A pin projects from the centre, on which a steel needle is 
placed, and at the outer edge of the rim a glass shade is secured to keep out dust, &c. The 
instrument is put in operation as follows: First, find a proper spot on the front of the boil- 
er to place the index or dial; this should lie a little above the range of the place where the 
middle cock is ordinarily put. See that from this place there is room for free play of the 
copper ball inside the boiler. Then drill a hole through the spot selected, large enough to 
receive the stem or pipe to which the index is attached; pass this stem through and set up 
the pinch nut on the inside, p;ick the outside nut with a pasteboard washer against the 
boiler, screw on the dial cap, and make a tight joint where it meets the circular plate. — 
Shoe-thread wound a few times round, or fuller's pasteboard will answer: but remember, 
put no lead or other cement anywhere on the gauge. Screw on the ball and fill up the 
boiler, adjust the dial and float so that the needle will lie horizontally, when the water is at 

216 Bibliographical Notice. 

the desired working level in the boiler. If the ball now has free passage of all stays or 
other obstructions throughout the whole range of motion, nothing can prevent the accu- 
rate working of the instrument. To keep it in perfect order for any number of years, (for 
the magnet has been so prepared that it will not lose its influence,) there is but one thing 
more required, and that attention is only necessary where muddy or other impure water 
is used. It will be seen that steam and water has free access to the magnet cJiamber 
through the tube. Where bad water is used to make steam, sediment may collect in this 
place, and possibly might interfere with the free action of the magnet. To prevent this, 
a small blow-off cock is attached, which must be occasionally opened when there is ahead 
of steam on, which will at once drive all sediment out. Any engineer will easily observe 
how often this is to be done. In some places it is not requisite ibr months; in others it 
will be well to do it once a day. In setting the ball, sometimes a stay interferes with 
the rod on which it is screwed. In this case the rod can be bent up or down to clear it. 
It will also be found too long to be admitted into small boilers: in this case the rod must 
be shortened, by giving it a waving shape, thus, ~~~-~-~. When the rod is left of the full 
length, the graduations on the dial indicate spaces of two inches. 


An Ehmcntary Treatise on Statics. By Gaspard Monge. With a 
Biographical Notice of the Author, translated from the French. By 
Woods Baker, A. M. of U. S. Coast Survey. E. C. & J. Biddle : 
Philadelphia, 1851. 

The great superiority of the French scientific men in treating their sub- 
jects has been so long and universally acknowledged, that the name of any 
French author of reputation affixed to a book is in itself a strong recom- 
mendation. Among those who have treated on Mechanical subjects, 
the author of the treatise before us is one of the most eminent, and 
was one of the first teachers on the system of scientific education which 
has produced such fruitful and valuable results in France. In all the 
works which proceeded from his pen, the practical applicability is never 
lost sight of in the most abstruse mathematical speculations, and you de- 
scend from the abstract demonstration to the applied problem so easily as 
to tempt the student still farther in his researches. Among the works 
p-iven by Monge to the world, perhaps none have been morepopular than 
his "Elementary Statics," a work which, although originally published in 
1786, has continued a classical treatise upon its subject until our own day, 
and is likely long so to continue. The merits of the work are a strict 
method, simple demonstration, fulness and completeness of subject, and 
a pure and pleasing style, which render his book as agreeable as valua- 
ble, and reduce the difficulties of the student to those intrinsic to the sub- 
ject itself. The translation which has been given to us by Mr. Baker, 
appears, as far as we have yet had an opportunity to examine it, to be a 
good, clear, and easy translation, and we hope that the publication may 
prove as profitable to the undertakers as it will be to the American student 
of statics. En. 







APRIL, 1851. 


For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

Notes on the U. S. Steamship "Michigan." By B. F. Isherwood, Chief 
Engineer U. S. JV. ( With a Plate.) 

The "Michigan" is a three-masted fore-topsail schooner- of- war, built 
in 1843, (I believe,) on the Northern Lakes, for service in those waters. 
Since that period she has been kept constantly in commission, making 
some eight years of uninterrupted service, excepting when the winter 
months compelled her to be laid up in common with other vessels navi- 
gating the Lakes. The following information, taken in part from a care- 
ful examination of her log book, and the rest from reliable sources, will 
be of value as a correct contribution to the statistics of steam navigation 

Hull. — Length, 162^ feet between perpendiculars; beam, extreme, 
27 feet; depth of hold, 12 feet; deep draft, 81 feet; light draft, 6 feet 1 1 
inches; mean draft, 7 feet 7 inches; greatest immersed amidship section 
at mean draft, 183 square feet; displacement at mean draft, 570 tons. 
The hull is composed of wrought iron plates, riveted on T shaped iron 
frames. Thickness of plates, ^ inch, uniform from bottom to top, clinker 
fastened; size of frames, 4.V x 4 x f inches; distance from centre to centre 
of frame, 2 feet. The machinery and coal occupy 60 feet long in the 
centre of the vessel. Total weight of hull, 507,387 pounds. As the 
Lakes are composed of fresh water, the objection to iron vessels, of the 
rapid fouling of their bottoms when employed in sea water, does not apply 
to the "Michigan." 

Vol. XXI. — Tuikd Series. — No. 4. — Apbii., 1851. 19 

218 Civil Engineering. 

Paddle Wheel — Of the common radial kind. There are 16 sets of 
paddles, and each set is in four pieces; that is, they are split vertically 
and horizontally. The pieces vertically are bolted one on each side of 
the arm, and horizontally, or on the face of the wheel, they are arranged 
alternately. The paddle surface is then equivalent to sixteen paddles, 7^ 
feet long and 26 inches broad. Mean immersion of lower edge of pad- 
dle, 3 feet 1 inch; diameter of wheel from outside to outside of paddle, 
21 feet. 

The bunkers stow 120 tons of coal. 

Engines. — There are two engines, placed side by side at an inclina- 
tion of 20|° from the keel. They have oak frames, and the air pumps 
work with a solid piston, at the same inclination as the cylinders. Diame- 
ter of cylinders, 36 inches; stroke of piston, 8 feet; diameter of air pump, 
29^ inches; stroke, 31 A- inches; diameter of feed pump, b\ inches; stroke, 
31^ inches; condenser capacity, 21 cubic feet; hot well, or reservoir, 
capacity, 21A- square feet; diameter of outboard delivery pipe, 10^ inches. 
Cylinder valves are of the double balance puppet kind; the steam valve 
having its upper disk 9^, and ils lower disk 8^- inches diameter. The ex- 
haust valve is the same, excepting that the disks change places, the larger 
being below, and the smaller above. Total weight of engines and frames, 
196,000 lbs.; mean cost per pound of engine, 24 cents. 

Boilers. — There are two iron boilers, with single return ascending flues. 
Total heating surface, 1976 square feet; total firegrate surface, 84 square 
feet; steam room capacity, 430 cubic feet; fire grates, f inch thick, with 
•§ inch air spaces between. Four furnaces in all; width of each furnace, 
44A inches.. Each boiler has four arches below, of the. aggregate cross 
area of 12-75 square feet at the bridge wall, and 10 square feet at the 
back connexions; and five flues above, 16| inches in diameter, giving 
an aayregate cross area of 7424 square feet. It will be observed that 
the calorimeter is diminished as the chimney is approached nearly 42 
per cent., which is rather too great a diminution, as will be perceived 
from the following considerations : The temperature of the furnace, though 
it has never been ascertained with any great degree of accuracy, may be 
taken at about 1000° Fahr., which is certainly below the truth; and sup- 
posing the fixed gases, which are the products of combustion, to be de- 
livered into the chimney at a temperature of 400° Fahr., then by the 
law of Mariotte a fixed gas reduces in bulk 7 £ n for each reduction of 1° 
Fahr. of temperature; consequently the volume of the gases at the chimney 
will only be 37 per cent, of what it was at the bridge wall; and did their 
velocity continue the same, the calorimeter, or area of flue, should diminish 
in the same proportion. Now, the velocity of the draft is in about the 
proportion of the temperatures; in order, then, that the products of com- 
bustion may pass off freely, the cross area of the flue should be nearly 
the same throughout. In fact, it will be found that the reduction of the 
calorimeter at the chimney should not exceed about |th of that at the 
bridge wall. If it be reduced below this, there will be a choking of the 
draft, more imperfect combustion of the fuel, and increased deposition of 
soot. The diameter of the chimney for both boilers was A\ feet; area, 
14,186 square feet; height above top of boilers, 27 feet. 

These boilers had a powerful draft, consuming 18-43 lbs. of bitumin- 

Notes on the U. S. Steamship "Michigan." 219 

ous coal per hour per square foot of grate. The proportion of grate to 
healing surface was as 1*00 to 23*52. The proportion of calorimeter at 
the chimney to the grate surface was as TOO to 11-31; at the bridge, as 
1-00 to 6-59, which latter is about a mean proportion in practice. The 
consumption of fuel per hour was 1548 lbs.; steam pressure per boiler 
per gauge, 15-5 lbs.; double strokes of engine per minute, 18^; cut off at 
•42 of the stroke from the commencement. It appears from the indicator 
diagrams that the initial pressure in the cylinder was 2 lbs. less than in the 
boiler. We have consequently ( (18^ x 2) x 7-068x8- x -42 x 2x60,) 
104493-3 cubic feet of steam at a total pressure of (14-7+13.5) 28.2 lbs. 
generated per hour by 1548 lbs. of coal. To this must be added the 
steam required to fill the spaces between the valves and in the cylinder 
nozzle at one end of the cylinder, 2-2 cubic feet, and the clearance 
•4— total, 2-6 cubic feet, and 2-6 x(l8£ X 2) x 2x60 = 11440. And 
104493-3 -(-11440= 115933-3, which, divided by the volume of steam 
compared to the volume of water, viz : 941, oives 123-2 cubic feet of 
water evaporated, and taking the weight of a cubic foot of water at 62^ 
lbs., we have 7703 lbs. of water evaporated per hour by 1548 lbs. of 
coal, or in round numbers, 5 lbs. of water by 1 lb. of coal. This is cer- 
tainly a low result, but then the calculation does not include the amount 
carried over by priming, which must have been considerable from the 
small proportion of steam room in the boilers. However, it is evident 
that the proportion of 23-52 square feet of heating to 1-00 of grate sur- 
face is not sufficiently large, with so rapid a combustion as 18-43 lbs. of 
coal per hour per square foot of grate. In the boilers of the "Pacific," 
on which experiments were tried, (the results of which will be found in 
the Journal of February last, p. 137,) bituminous coal was used, and 
the mean of twelve different varieties gave an evaporation of 7-19 lbs. of 
water per hour per pound of coal; burning per square foot of giate per 
hour 15.04 lbs. of coal. But then the proportion of heating to grate 
surface was nearly as 30 to 1, while the proportion of the calorimeter to 
the grate surface was about as 1 to 5-32. Supposing the absorption of 
heat from the gases to be in the proportion of the heating surface and 
quantity of coal consumed, it is evident the calorimeter should enlarge 
in an equal proportion. Now the proportion of heating surface between 
the boilers of the "Michigan" and the "Pacific" was as 23-52 to 30, or 
as 1-000 to 1.276, and the proportions of fuel burnt in equal times was 
as 1-000 to 0-816. Hence the proportional cooling down of the gases 

would be T—r---T= 1-000 and - 0l _ = T563. To have obtained results 
T00O 0-816 

somewhat similar to the "Pacific's," the calorimeter of the "Michigan" 

should have been made in this proportion to the "Pacific's;" that is, 

1-563 x 5-32 = 8-315; that is to say, the proportion of calorimeter to grate 

surface in the "Michigan" should have been as 1-000 to 8-315; whereas 

it was at the chimney much less, viz : as T000 to 11*31, though more at 

the bridge, viz: as 1-000 to 6-92. It therefore appears the calorimeter 

was too small in the "Michigan's" boilers, taking those of the "Pacific" 

for the standard, which gave considerably better results. Weight of 

"Michigan's" boilers and chimney, 68,000 lbs.; weight of water in 

boilers,' 50,000 lbs. 

220 Civil Engineering. 

Performance. — The mean speed of the "Michigan," between Sep- 
tember, 1845, and August, 1847, taken from her log, and computing the 
distances from Mitchell's Map of the Lakes, that being the latest authority, 
is 10-4 statute miles per hour. Mean revolutions of the wheels per 
minute, 18;\; slip of the centre of reaction of the paddle, 20-1 per cent.; 
oblique action of the paddle 13*1 per cent.; mean effective pressure on 
piston by indicator, 18-44 lbs. per square inch; real horses power develop- 
ed by engines, 333-66. 

Loss of Power by the Air Pump. — The power required to work the 
air pump can be easily computed from the appended indicator diagram, 
plate 3, taken from it. The pump being a forcing one, the mean pies- 
sure taken from the diagram will represent the whole power required to 
work it. The capacity of the pump is 12-25 cubic feet; that of the 
cylinder 56-544, and the pump makes one discharging stroke to every 
two strokes of the cylinder; their capacities will therefore be relatively 
as 12-25 to 113-088, or as 1-000 to 9-232. The mean pressure upon the 
pump piston is 6-625 lbs. per square inch; it is therefore equivalent to 
\ Q-939 J 0*718 lbs. on the steam piston, and 0-718 is 3-9 per cent, of 

18-44; that is to say, the power required to work the air pump, exclusive 
of the friction of its piston and journals, is 3-9 per cent, of the total power 
developed by the engine. 

By an inspection of the diagram, it will be observed that the forcing 
stroke commences at A, and that not until the piston has accomplished 
three-fourths of its stroke, that is, arrived at B, is there any discharge 
from the pump; the curved line AB is a hyperbola, and formed by the 
compression of the vapor and air in the pump. At the point B, a sudden 
discharge of water and air seems to have taken place, accompanied by 
as sudden a reduction of the pressure, which, however, rapidly rises till 
at the point C it is again at a maximum; another discharge then seems to 
take place, followed by a reduction (though a considerably less one,) as 
before, and then another rise, not so great as before, and so on. When 
the delivering stroke is accomplished, and the piston commences its return 
at D, the outboard delivering valve closes, and the pressure immediately 
falls to 12^- lbs. below the atmosphere, which is retained until the com- 
mencement of the following delivering stroke. By now observing the 
indicator diagram, taken from the steam cylinder, it will be perceived 
that the maximum condensation in the cylinder was only 11^ lbs. below 
the atmosphere, being less by 1\ lbs. than in the air pump. At the same 
time the gauge attached to the condenser showed 27 inches, or 13| lbs. 
below the atmosphere. The gauge must therefore have been inserted 
near the jet, and shows how little reliable are its indications unless it be 
attached to the proper part of the condenser; for it is wholly impossible 
that the condensation can be better in the condenser than in the pump, 
and yet the gauge here shows it to be 1 lb. better; and from the high pro- 
fessional character of the engineer who took the diagrams, I am persuaded 
his gauges and indicator were in good order and accurately adjusted. 

The height from the bottom of the air pump piston, at the termination 
of the delivering stroke, to the mean level of the water outside the vessel, 

Journal Tiraifctin Institute. 

Voim. 3 m 'Scries; Plate m 









Notes on the U. S. Steamship "Michigan." 221 

is 4.V feet; this column would balance a pressure of 2 lbs., consequently 
the delivery valve should have raised, had there been no other resistances, 
when the indicator showed a pressure of 2 lbs. above the atmosphere; 
but the diagram shows it did not raise until the pressure amounted to 
10 lbs. above the atmosphere. Where did this additional resistance, equal 
to 8 lbs., come from ? Clearly from friction of the water on the sides of 
the pump, reservoir, and delivery pipe; from the weight of the delivery 
valve, and from the contractions of the delivery pipe and consequent high 
speed at which the water had to be forced through it, together with the 
consequent greatly increased friction, for the friction and resistance in- 
crease as the square of the velocity. There was also a very strong back 
pressure of vapor from the reservoir, owing to the small size of the de- 
livery valve. 

The area of the pump was 671-95 square inches; of the delivery pipe 
only 86*59 square inches, or the pump area was 7*76 times that of the 
pipe. The capacity of the reservoir was 2l£ cubic feet; that of the 
pump 12\ cubic feet, or the reservoir was 1*755 times larger than the 
pump. The reservoir had no standing or air discharge pipe, and the 
delivery pipe let out at the centre of its height. Now, at each stroke of 
the pump there was discharged one-fourth of its capacity into the reservoir, 
and had the reservoir been free of water, there would have been but 
little resistance from the compression of the air within it; the capacity of 
the reservoir compara'ively with the bulk of water thrown into it per 
minute being about seven times greater. But the reservoir was situated 
almost wholly below the level of the outside water at mean draught, there 
being only about 4 cubic feet of space in the top above the outside water 
level, or only one-fourth more than the bulk of water discharged into it, 
and this bulk was discharged into it during the short time the piston was 
performing one-fourth of a stroke, or in -j 4 5 ths of a second. The outlet area 
being 7*76 times less than the inlet area, could give but little relief during 
T 4 ths of a second. We consequently see the back pressure on the delivery 
valve rising 8 lbs. above what it should be, principally from the compres- 
sion of the air in ihe top of the reservoir. This increased back pressure is 
a total loss, for the closing of the delivery valve on the return stroke shuts 
it off, and prevents it from giving back by its expansion, the power ex- 
pended on its compression. For the want, then, of a standing pipe, or ex- 
tension of the reservoir above the water level on the outside, and open to 
the air inside the vessel, and to the want of an outboard delivery pipe of a 
sufficiently large area, we perceive that a considerable unnecessary ex- 
penditure of power has to be made by the engine in working the air 
pump. Practical data is only valuable when we reason upon it and as- 
certain its results; in that case failures are nearly as valuable as success- 
ful experiments; otherwise bad and good are confounded; and it is im- 
possible to predicate of any essay, whether it will be as good, better, or 
worse than its predecessors. 

The diagram, taken from the steam cylinder, which I have added, 
was not taken at the mean point of cutting oiF, but was taken with the 
mean pressure of steam in the boiler per gauge, viz : 15-5 lbs. per square 
inch — cutting off at one-fourth the stroke. Mean effective pressure, 
14-4 lbs. per square inch; double strokes per minute, 18; vacuum incon- 


222 Civil Engineering. 

denser per gauge, 27 inches. When this diagram was taken, the vessel 
was very light. 

The cut-otfused was Sickle's arrangement, as originally patented; that 
is, the valve was tripped from the lifting rod. The diagram shows the 
steam valve to have had no lead; the exhaust valve did not open until 
the steam stroke was entirely performed, and it seated before the exhaust 
stroke was completed, cushioning the steam at A. 

The space between the valves and in the cylinder nozzle added to the 
clearance make 2-6 cubic feet to be filled wiih steam before each stroke 
can be commenced : this steam is not entirely lost when the engine works 
expansively; — it would be eniirely lost did the steam follow for the full 
stroke; and this loss will become less and less in proportion as the steam 
is worked more and more expansively. In the present case of the 
"Michigan," 2-6 cubic feet is equivalent to 0-368 foot on the length of 
the cylinder. The mean effective pressure in the cylinder for the whole 
stroke of 8 feet being 18-44 lbs. per square inch; the total power developed 
by the engine can be represented by 18-44x8=147-52. The effective 
pressure at the end of the stroke (at which pressure the exhaustion takes 
place) is 8-5 lbs.; consequently the power lost by filling the vacuities 
before the stroke commences, can be represented proportionally bv 
8-5 X 0-368=3-128, and 3-128 is 2-12 per cent, of the total power, 147-52; 
therefore, 2-12 per cent, of the total power developed by the engine has 
been thus lost. 

Indicator Diagram from the Steam Cylinder. — Steam pressure in boiler per gauge, 
15-5 lbs. per square inch. Vacuum in condenser per gauge, 27 inches. Strokes of piston 
per minute, 36. Vessel very light. Mean effective pressure 14-4 lbs. per square inch. 
Area of valve opening 121-66 square inches. Capacity of cylinder, 56-544 cubic feet. 

Indicator Diagram from Air Pump. — Temperature in air pump, 100° Fahr. Mean 
effective pressure, 6-625 lbs. per square inch. Capacity of air pump, 12^ cubic feet. 
Capacity of condenser, 21 cubic feet. 

Railway Traffl.c* 

The railway traffic for the past year presents a gratifying result — 
we mean as to the increased amount of it. Increased profits are another 
matter, dependent in a principal degree on the capital accounts remaining 
stationary, or nearly so, which unhappily has not by any means been the 
case. "Well, the traffic of 1850 has exceeded that of the former year by 
no less a sum than 1,741,418/. The traffic of the past year (1850) reach- 
ed the figure of 13,142,235/., and is derived from 6733 miles of railway, 
including those comparatively few Companies, old and new, who do not 
publish their returns in the regular way, but who cannot nevertheless evade 
a knowledge of the true amount of their traffic, or a very near approxi- 
mation to it. This gives an average receipt per mile per annum of 1944/. 

But if we confine ourselves to the amount of traffic as furnished by the 
publishing or above-board Companies, rejecting that of those who with- 
hold their traffic returns, we find the receipt per mile per annum ranging 
higher, simply because it is only the very inferior lines which avoid publica- 
tion; the lines with very mean traffics. The average then rises to 2227/. per 
• From the London Railway Journal, No. 605. 

Railway Traffic. 223 

mile per annum. The traffic of the publishing Companies amounts, during 
the last year, to 12,755,235/.; the miles open at the end of the year 
were 6257. But we must not, of course, divide the receipt of 12,755,235/. 
by the miles then open (6257) to get at the receipts per mile per week. 
That would be very fallacious. For the 6257 miles were not open during 
the whole of the year. On the contrary, at the beginning of the year, 
only 5256 miles were open, or about 1000 miles less. The mileage went 
on increasing week after week, and month after month, until it reached, 
at the end of the year (in respect to the publishing Companies) the extent 
of 6257 miles. We get at the year's average per mile by adding up the 
week's averages per mile, a method by which truth, as near as it is pos- 
sible to reach it, is arrived at. We may then say that the average mileage 
receipt per annum of all the publishing Companies was, for 1850, 22211. 
And it is useful to make this separation of the publishing Companies from 
the hole-and-corner ones for the sake of comparison with past years, for 
which we could not possibly make any estimate of the secret Companies' 

In comparison with former years the traffic per mile per annum stands 

For 1842 it was £3118, For 1847 it was £2870, 

" 1843 " 3085, " 1848 " 255G, 

" 1844 " 3278, " 1849 " 2302, 

" 1845 " 3469, " 1S50 " 2227. 
" 1846 " 3305, 

Observe how the traffic increased per mile from the year 1S42 until 
1845, when it reached its maximum. And then from 1845 to the last 
year, how it sank down, like the mercury in bad weather, to the very 
lowest point it has yet reached, viz., 22211. But it is satisfactory to no- 
tice that the difference between the last year's traffic and that of the former 
ones is much less, notwithstanding that we have had a greater number of 
miles opened in 1850 than in any one of the former years. For, durino* 
the year 1843 there were 56 miles opened; during 1844, there were 
194 miles opened ; during 1845, there were 263 miles opened ; 
during 1846, 593 miles; during 1847, 839 miles; during 1848, 975 
miles; during 1849, 835 miles; and during 1850, more than 1000 miles. We 
must, however, here remark that, although there were for the purposes of 
this table more than 1000 miles opened during the past year (1850,) yet, 
in point of fact, only 591 were opened during that year. The additional 
four or five hundred miles were in reality opened during former years, 
but in pursuance of that narrow-minded policy which demeans a good 
deal of railway management, the Companies opening those four or five 
hundred miles did not immediately publish the traffic returns of them, 
because forsooth, they (the directors) wished to have a short time to 
themselves for the traffic to develope itself; fearing that the "public" 
should be "alarmed" by what they called a " premature" publication, 
albeit the public, that is, the Shareholders, took much greater alarm by 
being kept in the dark, and did not at all relish the circumstance of the 
Directorates keeping the information as to how the traffic was getting on, 
entirely to themselves. 

There is now every probability of the mileage traffic not only ceasing 
to decrease, but to begin again to take an upward tendency. But really 
and truly, it depends much upon whether the Directors and Shareholders 

224 Civil Engineering. 

will be prudent. If they resolve to make for the present as few more 
miles as possible, then we cannot doubt that the mileage receipts would 
soon tend upwards, and, as a consequence, the dividends increase. Sup- 
pose for the sake of argument, that the mileage now stopped at what it 
is, and the capital accounts were closed, does any one think the traffic 
per mile would not go on increasing? So extremely sudden and decisive 
a step we know will not be taken. The lines three-parts finished must 
be completed. The present mileage must be further increased to some 
extent. In that there is no danger. The danger is, that Directors and 
Shareholders will not be true to their own interests ; or that Directors will 
go mad again, and Shareholders renew their foolish and almost criminal 
state of indifference ; that between them they will rush again into the 
Avildest speculation, or not now close up as quickly as they can. If Di- 
rectors will do their duty, which we think we are fully warranted in saying 
they certainly will not, unless the Shareholders look well after them, there is 
little fear that in course of time railway matters will be righted. The traffic 
of this year is expected to do something material in rectification of them. 

The 6733 miles, including those "little goes" who sink into the back 
ground, and do all they canto avoid publication, have cost the enormous 
sum of 230,522,731/., being at the rate of 34,238/. per mile. 

The closing of the capital accounts, that is the great object at which 
the Shareholders should strive ; and yet it is the very one which we were 
jeered at for being the first to moot. We wanted the capital accounts for 
the old lines closed at once, and those for the new closed as soon as 
possible. For, just see how the keeping of them open works. Share- 
holders have vainly flattered themselves with the belief that the new and 
cheaper railways were bringing down their average mileage cost. No 
such thing. Instead of that, the average mileage cost has been going up. 
In 1842 the cost per mile was 34,690/.; in 1843, 36,360/.; in 1844, 
35,670/.; in 1845, 35,070/.; in 1846, 31,860/.; in 1847, 31,709/.; in 
1848, 34,234/.; in 1849, 35,214/.; and in 1850, 35,229/. So that not- 
withstanding all the new and cheaper lines, it is actually now higher than 
in 1842. And it will go on increasing if Shareholders do not go on 
supervising. The "improvements" of the lines will never cease as long 
as Shareholders are simple enough to pay for them, or subscribe large 
sums of money without knowing to what they are applied. 

With good management there is great hope, and trusting that means 
will be taken to obtain it where it is wanting, and keep it where it is 
found — and determined to do our part towards railways — we think we 
might wish our readers a happy new year. 

JVew Method of Preventing Incrustations in Steam-Boilers.^ 

Mode of preparation, by M. Saillard, of Nantes: — Catechu, 100 lbs.; 
subcarbonate of potash, 50 lbs.: subcarbonate of soda, 50 lbs.; common 
resin, 10 lbs.; lime, 20 lbs.; water, 300 lbs. — 1. Boil for 20 minutes the 
subcarbonate of potash and soda with the lime and resin, with 200 parts 
of water; remove the fire, allow the mixture to settle, and draw off' the 
clear liquor. — 2. In another boiler, make a decoction of the catechu 3 in 
* From the London Mining Journal, No. 802. 

Increase of Railway Traffic. 22o 

the remainder of the water; after boiling for 10 minutes, pass the decoction 
through a fine hair or silk sieve, and add to it the liquor obtained in the 
previous process; stir the mixture, and keep it in well-stoppered vessels. 
Mode of application: — The boiler having been well cleaned, introduce 
through the man-hole, as soon as the boiler is half-filled with water, a gr lb. 
of the resinous double subcarbonate of soda and potash per horse-power 
every six weeks. The quantity above-mentioned should be introduced 
every six weeks, by means of the feed pipes, when the steam is low. 
For marine boilers, introduce 3 lbs. of the preparation every four hours 
into the boiler for every 100 horse-power, and blow off once in every 
eight hours. The blowing off should be performed 10 minutes previous 
to the introduction of the preparation into the boiler. 

Increase of Railway Traffic* 

We have usually considered that the traffic of the country increases 
annually about 10 per cent., so that in the course of ten years the traffic 
would be doubled. Of course this must have a limit. Increase at this 
rate could not go on for ever. Thus it appears from the following 18 
lines, on which there has either been no increase of mileage or a very 
trifling one, that the old lines have a less increase than the new, and the 
older they are, generally speaking, the less the pro rata increase. 

Increase per cent, on the traffic of the 
year 1849, during the year 1850. 

Midland, • • • "i 

Brighton, ... 5j 

Caledonian, ■ * » "6J 

Newcastle and Carlisle, • • 8j 

South Western, ■ • • . 9 

Bristol and Exeter, • • \Q\ 

York, Newcastle, and Berwick, • H£ 

Ulster, • • • 14 

Belfast and Ballymena, • • • 191 

Great Southern and Western, • 20 

South Devon, ■ • 21 

South Eastern, • • • 23£ 

York and North Midland, • • 25 

Lancaster and Carlisle, • • 28 J 

Shropshire Union, • • 30 

Leeds and Thirsk, • • 45:V 

Chester and Holyhead. • • • 64A 

Eastern Counties (decrease) • — 4^ 

Mean 19 per cent. 34 \\ 

The mean annual increase, it will appear, is at the rate of 19 per cent., 
or nearly double our estimate. But the past has been a rather extraor- 
dinary year. Traffic has increased much more rapidly than for years 
before, so that the year 1850 does not, therefore, present a fair measure 
of the average increase of traffic. Neither is it likely that the present 
year will. We might this year have a rise in the passenger traffic of 
possibly 50 per cent, or more over the past. Excluding these anomalous 
years, we do not think we shall err much in fixing 10 per cent, or about 
the half of the past year's increase as a fair annual average. If no more 

* From the London Railway Journal, No. 605. 

226 Civil Engineering. 

1845 follies are'fherefore committed, railways will shortly come round to 
a fitting state of prosperity. 

One or two special observations on this table may not be amiss. Gene- 
rally speaking, it will be observed that the old lines present a less per 
cent, increase than the new ones, arising from the well-known fact, that 
the traffic of railways, like many other works of the creation, require 
time for development. Full traffic does not come on a railway as soon 
as it is made, though it lie between towns whose traffic has no perceptible 
increase. It takes time to turn traffic out of its old channels. People 
are naturally averse to sever old connexions, and adopt new ones and 
new courses all at once. They must be coaxed and brought to them 

On the Midland, it will be noticed, that there has been the least increase, 
and, on the Eastern Counties, a decrease of A\ per cent. Both of these 
lines are exposed to a competition with the Great Northern, which is no 
doubt a reason for the falling off; but whether it explains the whole of 
it, we do not pretend to say. On the Midland, the goods have very much 
increased, for which the line is well situated, provided the Directors and 
the Directors of the Great Northern, will but work comfortably together. 
Had it not been for the increase in the goods department, the falling off 
would have been great. The Eastern Counties ought to have been a part 
of the Great Northern between Cambridge and London, as we always 
contended. The saving of capital would have been great to the latter 
Company, and the traffic, at however small a rate carried, would have 
been a god-send to the former, while the line would have retained a good 
part of the traffic it then had, as its own proper traffic. 

It wjis a great mistake in both Companies to have two lines so near and 
parallel, which we did all in our power at the time, publicly and privately, 
to prevent. Both directions, however, were occasionally mad, or when 
the one had any reason the other had not. 

The Leeds and Thirsk, and the Chester and Holyhead, in their per 
cent, increase have distanced all the others, and almost jumped out of the 
class. They are both new lines, and had both great room for that increase, 
which we are glad to find they have realized. 

While there is good reason for gratulation in the increases which the 
above table exhibits, we cannot help feeling regret at some of the facts 

It there appears that the average cost per mile has increased from 
31,860/. on 2610 miles opened in 1846, to 35,229/. on 6238 miles opened 
in 1850, at the same time that the traffic has decreased from 3305/. per 
mile at the former period, to 2227/. at the latter. In other words, the 
cost per mile has increased 11 per cent., and the traffic has decreased 
33.V per cent., or three times as fast. 

This is by no means an encouraging feature, yet it is to be hoped, the 
gradual increase of traffic will presently make all right. To accomplish 
so desirable an object, however, it will require the greatest vigilance and 
honesty of purpose on the part of railway boards. 

Another feature must not be overlooked in this mileage decrease of 
traffic, namely, that passengers and goods are both carried at less tariffs 
than they were, with, it is true, a less expense, but not a proportionally 

Statistics of Steam Power in France. 227 

less. The consequence is, that the profits must decrease faster than the 
traffics have. Hence, one reason why the dividends have so much sunk. 
Several reflections might be made on these less favorable features ; 
but we are not disposed to indulge in them, or to damp the joyous feel- 
ing that all must experience, in the decisive proofs of the growing traffic 
of the country. All that we want to do, is to impress on Directors the 
necessity of caution in future extensions, and upon Shareholders to be 
careful how they encourage or sanction them. There is evidently a 
vitality in the railway system, which will, if not crushed with new and 
profitless burthens, grow out of all the difficulties with which, by the folly 
of Directors and — it must not be concealed — the rapacity of Shareholders, 
it has been pressed down and encumbered. 

Statistics of Railways .* 

By a work recently published, it appears that there were in operation, 
at the commencement of 1849, in different parts of the globe, a total length 
of 18,656 miles of railway, on which a capital of 368,567,000/. had been 
actually expended. Besides this, it is estimated that there were, at the 
same epoch, in progress of construction, a further extent of 7829 miles, the 
cost of which, when completed, would be 146,750,000/. Thus when 
these latter lines shall have been brought into operation, the population of 
Europe and the United States (forit is there only that railways have made 
any progress) will have completed, within the period of less than a quarter 
of a century, 26,485 miles of railway; that is to say, a greater length than 
would completely surround the globe, at a cost of above 500,000,000/. 
sterling. To accomplish this stupendous work, human industry must have 
appropriated, out of its annual savings, 20,000,000/. for twenty-five suc- 
cessive years. 

Statistics of Steam Poioer in France.] 

There are 5607 manufactories in which steam machinery is employed. 
Of boilers, the number is 9288, of which 8776 were made in French 
establishments. These boilers represent a force of 65,120 horses' power, 
calculating the horse power as 75 kilogrammes (180 lb.) raised one metre 
(1 yard) per second. They represent the available force of 195,361 
draft horses and 1,367,530 laborers. The number of boilers employ- 
ed in the preceding year was only 8023, and only 4033 establishments 
existed in which steam power was used. The length of railway now 
open for traffic is 2171 kilometres (1300 miles), on which are employed 
725 locomotives. The number of steam trading vessels is 279, — tonnage, 
40,098 ton-;. They are propelled by 502 engines, constituting a total 
power of 22,893 horses. The merchandise transported by these vessels 
amounted to 780,948 tons. The progress of steam navigation in France 
is thus indicated: In 1835 there were 75 steamers, by which 1,038,916 
passengers were carried, and SS,l-!0 tons of merchandise; last year there 
were 279 steamers, 2,808,886 passengers, and 730,948 tons. — Journal 
des Debats. 

• From the London Builder, No. 411. f Ibid. 


A Novelty in Railway Management* 

This is a principle which we have long since advocated in the Artizan. 
It will be remembered that, in Mr. Leclaire's factory, in Paris, all the 
men have a share in the profits of the business. 

The dividend declared by the London and Brighton and South Coast 
Railway Company, at a meeting of the proprietors held on the 24th, was 
£2 12s. per cent, for the half year, leaving a surplus balance of profits 
of .£4248. The total receipts for the half year have been £306,219, 
being an increase of £19,862 over the corresponding period of 1849. 
The total increase of income has been at the rate of 17f per cent, during 
the last three years, whereas the expenditure has been 12| , occasioned 
by the amount of renewals. 

Two important features are shown in the present report. It is intended 
that the principal officers of the company, upon whose exertions its 
prosperity in a great measure depends, shall benefit by the increase of 
dividend in each year, so that for an advance of 1 per cent, of dividend, 
they shall receive an advance of 25 per cent, on their salaries. As re- 
gards the other servants of the company, it is intended to provide a 
retiring pension in the event of their being disabled or superannuated in 
the company's service; £1000 annually will be appropriated towards a 
benevolent fund for this purpose. 

TJie Ventilation of Collieries, Theoretically and Practically Considered. 
By Mr. William Price Struve, M. Inst. C. E.\ 

The author commenced by showing that the general principles which 
ouo-ht to govern the ventilation of collieries were — 1, That a current of 
air through the channels of collieries, at a velocity of five feet per se- 
cond, was sufficient for most purposes. 2, That a current exceeding 
that velocity would only be attained at the expense of leakage and 
other evils. 3, That, in order to obtain the requisite supply of fresh 
air, the channels of a colliery or mine ought to be enlarged, according 
to the exigency. In the process of laying out a mine, a sub-division 
occurred by which the workings were apportioned into numerous com- 
partments, which facilitated the system of splitting #ie current of air, or 
diverting it into numerous channels, giving to each compartment a sepa- 
rate and, therefore, more effective ventilating force; at the same time the 
area of the channel was enlarged, and the aggregate length of the air- 
tube shortened, so that it was quite practicable to pass through the work- 
ings of a mine three hundred cubic feet of air per minute for each man 
employed. A comparison of the dimensions of the air passages and the 
velocities of the currents in numerous collieries led to an estimate of 
motive power required to produce the results attained in the best venti- 
lated mines, in case of the employment of a steam engine and air pumps. 
This power would have varied between 23 horse power and 26 horse 

* From the London Artizan, for February, 1851. 
f From the London Railway Journal, IS'o. 599. 

Locomotive Steam Carriage for Common Roads. 229 

power. The efficiency of furnace ventilation was always increased by 
the depth of the shafts, especially if they were entirely devoted to the 
purposes of ventilation, irrespective of the working of the pit. The 
experiments of Mr. N. Wood, Mr. G. Elliot, Mr. H. Vivian, and other 
mining engineers, were then quoted, to demonstrate the insufficiency of 
the "steam jet" as a means of promoting ventilation, showing that it was 
a most wasteful application of power, when compared with the steam 
force employed to work Struve's mine ventilator at the Eaglesbush Col- 
liery. This apparatus consisted of two hollow pistons, resembling large 
gasometers, plunging into cisterns of water, and having inlet and outlet 
valves. The pistons received alternate motion from a small steam engine 
of 5 horse power, and being filled and emptied at each revolution of the 
crank, produced a regularity of current and a degree of copious ventilation 
hitherto unknown in the mines to which they had been applied. The 
small cost of their establishment — only about one hundred pounds for an 
extensive mine — joined with the little liability to getting out of order, 
was much in their favor. The paper terminated with copious extracts 
from the able mining reports of Mr. John Phillips and Mr. Kenyon 
Blackwell, confirming all the positions assumed by the author. The dis- 
cussion upon this paper was announced to take place at the next meet- 
ing, Tuesday, November 26, until which time the meeting was adjourn- 
ed.— Proc. Inst. Civ. Eng., Nov. 19, 1850. 

Cornish Engines.' 

The number of pumping engines reported this month is 27. They 
have consumed 2081 tons of coal, and lifted 19,000,000 tons of water 10 
fathoms high. The average duty of the whole is, therefore, 52,000,000 
pounds, lifted one foot high by the consumption of 94 lbs. of coal. — Lean's 
Engine Reporter, Jan. 8, 1851. 

Mess7S. Clark and Motley" 1 s Patent Locomotive Steam Carriage for Com- 
mon Roads, f 

These gentlemen have put forth a prospectus, in which they show that 
the capital cost of a steam locomotive carriage for the common roads is 
600/., and that the produce from 30 passengers per day, at Id. per mile, 
would be 12/. 10s., and that the working expenses, including 5 per cent, 
interest on the capital, would amount to 3/. 5s. 6d. per day, leaving the 
large profit of 9/. 4s. 6d. per day. But we arrive at quite a different con- 
clusion, and that we do without disturbing the working expenses, and the 
number of passengers carried. For we say that the passengers who would 
travel by such a vehicle, would be of the same class as those who travel 
by railway, the common road steam carriage being, in fact, in competi- 
tion with the railway system. Very well. What do railway passengers pro- 
duce as an average? Why, the average is under 2s. 6d. each. Therefore, 
•From the London Railway Journal, No. 608. f Ibid. No. 607. 

Vol. XXL— Tiiiud Series.— No. 4.— April, 1851. 20 

230 Civil Engineering. 

if the common road steam carriage only took 30 passengers a day, as 
Messrs. Clark and Motley calculate, the receipts would, at railway fare, 
amount to under Al. a day ; but as the railway fare averages nearly 2d. 
a mile, and Messrs. Clark and Motley mean to carry at Id. a mile, their 
receipts would be only about 21. a day, instead of 121. 10s., leaving a 
formidable deficit instead of a lumping surplus on the working of a day's 
journey. The expenses would be (including the 5 per cent, interest, 
which amounts, however, to only Is. Sd.) 31. 5s. 6d. per day; the re- 
ceipts say 21-, loss 1/. 5s. 6d. 

Now this is the result, taking their own figures both in regard to ex- 
penses, and carrying 30 passengers a day. 

If they want to show a surplus, they must alter the number of passen- 
gers they will carry ; for it is not reasonable to expect their passengers 
will produce more than railway passengers. 

Plate- Iron Girder Bridges* 

The annexed engravings show the construction of one of the numerous 
bridges which have been designed by Mr. Martin, the engineer, to carry 
the railway from the London and North- Western Railway to the East and 
West India Docks. It carries the railway over Randolph street, Camden 

The peculiarity consists in constructing the bridge with two side girders, 
each of a single web, of plates of iron, 71 feet long, 6 feet 7| inches high, 
• From the London Architect, for November, 1850. 

East Indian Railway. 231 

and T 5 r -in. thick; put together with plates 5 inches wide, overlapping the 
vertical joints, and f-inch rivets placed 3 inches apart, and fixed to the 
top and bottom plates by angle iron 3 inches wide, and f-inch rivets. 
The bottom plate is 2 feet 8 inches wide, made with -,Vinch plates in 
lengths of 8 feet each, with plates overlapping the joints 6 inches wide. 
The outer flanch is curved down 1 inch, to throw off the wet; the top 
plate is 2 feet 8 inches girt, made with T 5 s -in. plates, excepting the three 
middle plates, which are f-inch in thickness; the top is curved down 5 
inches, and put together with inch rivets. The girders are stiffened by eight 
vertical plates on each side of the web, of T 4 g -in. iron, fixed by angle iron 
3 inches wide, and f-in. rivets placed 4 inches apart. There are also two 
similar stiffeners at each end, of f-in. iron. The top plate is further stif- 
fened by stays of T-iron, 5^ inches wide between each pair of stiffeners. 

Fig. 3. 

Fig. 4. 

The cross girders are 24 feet 6 inches long, and 1 foot 4 inches high, 
made with f-inch plates in three lengths, and stiffened by angle iron top 
and bottom, and on each side, 3.V inches wide, and fastened with f-inch 
rivets 4 inches apart. The ends of these cross girders rest upon the two 
girders first described. 

Fig. 1 is a cross section of the bridge. Fig. 2 is a side view of part of 
one of the longitudinal girders. Fig. 3 is an enlarged section of one of 
the girders, showing the stiffeners. Fig. 4 is a section through the same 
girder, showing the stays to stiffen the top plate. 


East Indian Railway.* 

The operations of the Bengal Railway Company have been much im- 
peded by the delay of Government in providing the necessary legislative 
authority to take the ground for the line. The electric telegraph is pro- 
gressing rapidly, and the entire line will be laid down as far as Diamond 
Harbour by Christmas. The progress of laying down the wires (which 
are covered with resin, and protected by earthenware pipes) is at the rate 
of about three miles a day. — Indian Correspondent of The Times. 

Public Works at Algeria. f 

In the report from the Minister of War to the Legislative Assembly, in 
the spring of 1850, it is stated that, subsequently to the occupation of 
Algeria, there have been executed in that colony, at the expense of the 
mother country, no less than 3270 miles of road ; 18,959 acres of marsh 
lands have been drained ; 278,000 yards linear of irrigation channels ; 
and 82,057 yards of main drains or ditches ; and 127,000 yards of aque- 
ducts or water courses have been constructed; 91,900 yards linear of 
street have been formed or regularized in -the divers towns; and nearly 
32,000 yards linear of sewers formed in them; barracks have been erected 
for 40,000 soldiers, and hospitals for 5000 invalids. The port of Algiers 
has been improved, and important works begun at several other points 
on the coast. Churches for the Christian population, mosques for the in 
digenous races, have been restored, and new ones built where needed. 

The country in which these works have been executed is only 77,120,000 
acres superficial (France itself being 131,966,525 acres nearly,) including 
the Little Desert, which occupies above two-thirds of the surface. The 
densely peopled portions, are the civil territories of the Prefectures of 
Algiers, Oran, and Constantine, whose total surfaces are only 706,902 
acres. The population in 1848, consisted of 64,123 Frenchmen, 55,141 
other Europeans, mostly Maltese, Spaniards, and Sicilians. The different 
sexes and ages are— men, 49,839 ; women, 34,937; children, 34,488. 
The indigenous population is supposed to be three millions; and the 
army of occupation 60,000 men. 

Wrought Iron Beams for Steam Engines. % 

The beams of steam engines, as most persons are aware, have hitherto 
been made of cast iron, which is liable to break. The attempt to make 
them of malleable iron, was never dreamt of; and when we state that 
rolled beams are now to be seen at the depot of the York, Newcastle, and 

•From the London Railway Journal, No. 60G. 
fFrom the London Architect, for November, 1850. 
JFrom the London Mining Journal, No. 798. 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 233 

Berwick Railway, the announcement will be received in many quarters 
with surprise, if not incredulity. We saw the monster plates, however, 
with our own eyes (the largest plates ever yet rolled,) measuring 17 feet 
in length, 4 feet 8 inches in breadth at the widest part, and 1^ inch in 
thickness. Each plate weighs upwards of 1 ton 4 cwts. These plates 
were manufactured at the Derwent Iron works, Consett, and are on their 
way to Messrs. Tod and Macgregor's works in Glasgow, to form part of 
a large marine engine : they are much lighter, and, consequently, less 
cumbrous, than the ordinary cast iron beams, and infinitely safer. 


List of American Patents which issued from February 18, to March 11, 1851, (in- 
clusive,) with Exemplifications by Charles M. Keller, late Chief Examiner of 
Patents in the U. S. Patent Office. 

13. For an Insulated Fusible Plug for Steam Boilers, E. H. Ashcroft, Boston, Massa- 

chusetts, February 18. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the arrangement herein described, for 
surrounding a fusible plug and its case, by a stratum of air, in such manner that the plug 
shall promptly melt and give warning, after the water gets low in the boiler, but before 
the boiler plate, to which the apparatus is applied, is left bare of water, substantially as 
herein set forth. 

"I also claim the arrangement of the stopper and plug case, substantially as herein de- 
scribed, for stopping the escape of steam, to admit of the replacement of the fusible plug, 
without blowing off the steam or water from the boiler, after the plug has melted, sub- 
stantially as herein set forth. 

"I likewise claim the method of preventing the waste of the metal of the plug, after it 
has melted, by supporting it in a closed socket, the lower unoccupied part of which is of 
sufficient capacity to receive and retain the metal when melted, and to allow the steam to 
pass over it to escape." 

14. For an Improved Annular Steam Boiler,- Thomas Champion, Philadelphia. Penn- 
sylvania, February 18. 

"The nature of one of my inventions consists in closing the annular"water spaces of my 
concentric boiler, by means of metallic tapered rings, by which the ends of the cylinders, 
of uniform length, can be closed even and fair at both ends, so as to stand the fire, and 
leave only the required space for tire, and so that the constructor can get the rivets in on 
one side, and at the same time have room for riveting them on the. outside. 

"Another of my inventions and improvements consists in connecting the lower parts 
of the annular water spaces, each to each firmly, the upper and inner to the lower and 
outer one, answering the four-fold purpose of bracing the boiler below, or, if needed, at the 
sides, giving free ebullition, further assisting evaporation, and giving an opportunity for the 
dirt to settle in the blow-pipe, whence it may be blown out." 

Claim. — "Having thus described the nature of my invention and improvement in the 
construction of steam boilers, what I claim as new and of my invention, is, 1st, The em- 
ployment of the tapered rings B, for closing the ends of any of the water spaces of the 
concentric boilers, in the manner set forth. 

"2d, I also claim connecting the lower parts of the annular water spaces, each to each, 
from the upper and inner to the lower and outer one, substantially as described, by metal- 
lic rings or collars, thus giving free ebullition, assisting evaporation, and allowing the dirt 
to settle down into the blow-pipe, from whence it may be blown out; the aforesaid rings 
or collars bracing the boiler, as well as forming the connexion between the cylinders." 


234 American Patents. 

15. For Improvements in Hand Looms,- Isaac H. Garretson, Clay, Iowa, February 18. 

"My invention consists, 1st, in effecting the movement of the heddles by a motion de- 
rived from the lay, through the intervention of a cam, shaft and trcddles, or their equiva- 
lents, the first of which is made to revolve by means of a ratchet, which is put in motion 
by the lay, and acts upon ratchet teeth, secured to the cam shafts;' — and, second, in effect- 
ing the throwing of the shuttle by a motion derived from the lay, by means of a pair of 
levers, whose arms are connected with the breast-beam and shuttle drivers." 

Claim. — "W hat I claim as my invention, is the device consisting substantially of the 
tappet shaft, with its ring block, and together with the connecting cord, weight, and marches, 
whereby the heddles are raised and depressed in the proper order, to form the shed, by the 
movement of the lay, substantially as herein set forth. 

'•I likewise claim the device, consisting substantially of the levers, with the breast-beam, 
cords, and picker-stick cords, whereby^ the picker-sticks are moved to drive the shuttle, by 
the movement of the lay." 

1C. For Improvements in Machines for Turning Irregular Forms; Fhilo S. Beers, 
Hamden, Connecticut, February 18. 

'•The nature of this invention consists in such a combination and arrangement of 
various mechanical devices in one machine, that a piece of rough timber, of convenient 
size, being adjusted therein, and subjected to the action thereof, is quickly reduced to the 
complete form of a carriage wheel spoke, (or such similar article as may be required,) and 
that without any lateral or longitudinal motion of either the cutters or of the rough ma- 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, are, 1st, the three cutter 'cylinders, (with 
cutters arranged as within described,) in combination with the sliding frame, compound 
cams, and cam-rails, constructed and arranged substantially in the manner and for the 
purpose herein described. 

"2d, I claim the combination of the compound cams and cam-rails, with the sliding 
frame and devices (within described) for holding and revolving the timber material, where- 
by such vertical motion is produced in the latter, while being subjected to the action of 
revolving or vibrating cutters, as to reduce the timber to the required form." 

17. For Improvements in Tools for Tonguing, Jointing, and Rebating; John A. Fry, 
Edinburg, Pennsylvania, February 18. 

"The purposes of my invention are to make a tool, by the use of which the workman 
may make tongues of different thicknesses, the same tool being capable of both tonguing 
and jointing the stuff, and to make the same tool answer the purpose of a rebating plane. 
The tool might be called a combined jointing, tonguing and rebating plane. The advan- 
tage of such a tool is, that boards or planks of different thicknesses may be tongued with 
one implement, and vet each may have a tongue cut upon it of a thickness adapted to 
that of the plank, ft also enables the workman to diminish the thickness of any tongue, 
if found too thick for the easy putting together of his work. It also saves the trouble of 
keeping on hand, or carrying about, three distinct tools instead of one, to perform the 
three or four operations for which this implement is intended." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is so making a jointing, tonguing, and rebating 
plane, that the iointing and tonguing of a board, while resting on its edge, and also the 
jointing and rebating of it while it lies on its flat side, may all be performed with one 
p! aning tool, in the manner substantially as herein described, and for the purposes herein 
set forth. 

"I also claim making the tonguing hand plane, in such a manner as to enable the 
workman to make therewith tongues of various thicknesses, substantially in the manner 
herein set forth, whereby I prevent the necessity of providing different tools to tongue 
planks of different thicknesses. 

"I also claim in combination with a divided body or plane stock, the two cutters, having 
each a cross cutting and side cutting edge, and the means, substantially as herein de- 
scribed, for adjustingthe distance apart of the two cutters and bodies, whereby the plane 
is made capable of dressing the sides of a tongue to any desired thickness, and at the same 
time to cut the shoulders, as herein specified. 

"I also claim, in combination with the gauge G, the use of the body 13', and the cross 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 235 

edge of the cutter P', to constitute a jointer, to straighten the edge of a board, prepara- 
tory to tonguing it, and while resting on its edge, in a situation to receive the tonguing. 
"I also claim the gauge G, in combination with the notch p, and the side edge of the 
cutter P, acting as herein described, as a jointing plane, to straighten the edge of aboard 
or plank resting on its flat side, in a position to have a rebate cut, in the manner sub- 
stantially as herein set forth. 7 ' 

18. For an Improvement in Weavers' Heddles,- Charles Tiot Judkins, Lowell, Massa- 
chusetts, February 18; ante dated December 10, 1849. 
Claim. — "I declare that I do not claim metal, in combination with harness or heddles, 
when used in the solid state and fixed to the harness or heddle yarn at each end, such 
heddle yarn not being continuous, as in my invention. But what I do claim as my in- 
vention, is covering, coating, or lining the loops or eyes in heddles or harness with metal, 
by the process I have shown, or by any equivalent process." 

19. For an Improved Attachment for Opening and Closing Doors or Shutters,- 
William Post, Flushing, New York, February 18. 

"The nature of my invention refers to the use of sliding doors or shutters for closing 
up the fronts or open portions of stores and other buildings, and consists in the use of 
jibs, or swinging attachments, upon the upper edge of which the doors or shutters are run, 
and which may be swung in suitable directions, so as to allow of the doors or shutters 
being run off, and removed into a recess or space in a line forming a right or other angle 
with the position they occupy when used in closing the windows or other open parts; the jibs 
or other swinging attachments also serving to carry out the shutters when required to 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the use of swinging attachments or jibs, 
for moving sliding doors or shutters, constructed and operating substantially in the manner 
herein shown and described." 

20. For an Improved Snatch-Block,- Philip Rhodes, Jr., Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, Febru- 
ary 18. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the closing up of the opening in the sides 
of a ship's snatch-block, by means of a gate, (E,) arranged and operating substantially 
as herein set forth, by which I am enabled to make the block shorter and more compact 
than it has heretofore been made. 

"I also claim the securing the pulley axle / in its place, without the aid of screw and 
nut, or rivet heads, and in such a manner that it can be readily removed, by means of the 
combination of the said pulley axle with the enclosing strap C, and the gate strap D, 
substantially in the manner herein set forth." 

21. For an Improvement in Planing Machines,- Daniel H. Southworth, City of New 
York, February 18. 

Claim. — "I claim, 1st, the use of circularly grooved rollers in front of the cutter, to 
divide and cut the unplaned surface of the board into narrow longitudinal strips, whereby 
the outer shavings are taken oil' in narrow strings, or threads, in the manner and for the 
purposes herein set forth. 

"2d, I do not claim simply the arrangement of the plane stocks with their cutters upon 
flic traveling frame, in such order that one gang or set of cutters will plane one plank by 
their movement in one direction, and another gang of cutters plane another plank by their 
movement in the opposite direction, and remove the first plank planed from the bed; but 
this I claim, only when these arc used in connexion with the circular groove serving rol- 
ler, as within described." 

22. For an Improvement in Saw Milk; Isaac Straub, Cincinnati, Ohio, February 18. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method of imparting a rocking or 
curved motion to the saw. and of straining the same by mechanical devices, substantially 
such as herein described." 

236 American Patents. 

23. For an Improvement in Apparatus for Raising and Carrying Water,- James D. 
Willcughby, Scotland, Pennsylvania, February IS. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the double draft cord, so arranged and 
connected with the car windlass that it effects the two-fold purpose of propelling the car- 
riage to and fro, and of turning the car windlass to unwind and wind up the bucket cord, 
thus ensuring the descent of the bucket into the well." 

24. For Improvements in Knitting Machines,- John Pepper, Portsmouth, New Hamp- 
shire, assignor to Charles Warren and Horatio G. Sanford, Boston, Massachusetts, 
February 25; ante dated August 25, 1850. 

Claim. — "Having thus described the construction and operation of my improved ma- 
chine, I claim as my invention, the following new improvements : — My first improvement 
consists in the manner of producing the upward anil downward motion, as above described, 
of the lead sinkers and of the jack sinkers, so far as they move simultaneously; and I 
claim the half jack u, vibrating on the comb bar P, and connected with the sinker frame, and 
with the movable cross bar 28, and springs 29, for the purpose of depressing the tail 
ends of the jack, and thereby raising their forward ends with the jack sinkers, as aforesaid. 

"I also claim the movable cross bar 28, containing the springs, 29, connected as afore- 
said, and for the purposes aforesaid. 

"My second improvement consists in the manner of producing the backward and for- 
ward motion of the jack and lead sinkers, as above described; and I claim the cams 7, in 
combination with the cross bar 60, with the projections thereon, the hanging bars S, 
vibrating pivots, the comb bar P, and the half jacks u, connected w r ith the sinker frame 
as aforesaid, and for the purposes aforesaid. 

. "My third improvement consists in the manner of moving the carrier needle and slur 
knob, as aforesaid, and I claim the combination of the cam V, and the shoe and shoe plate, 
lor the purposes aforesaid. 

"I also claim the combination of the cam V, with the shoe 5, the movable shoe plate f, 
the chains // and /, the semi-circles and hub, or wheel and hub, the bar W, connected with 
the slur carriage and the slur knob Q, and the horizontal bar X, the carriage q, connected 
with the carrier needle q 2 , for the purposes aforesaid. 

"My fourth improvement consists in the manner of moving the ribbed work attachment, 
and producing the ribbed stitch, simultaneously with the plain stitch, without the machine 
slide, and with one presser, as above described. And I also claim the combination of the 
cams 9, with the levers 18, connected with the frame 17, and with the ribbed needle bar 16, 
for the purposes aforesaid; also, the same in combination with the presser r, connected, 
moved, and operating as aforesaid, and for the purposes aforesaid." 

25. For an Improvement in Cooking Ranges,- Moses Pond, Boston, Massachusetts, 
February 25. 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the improvements by which the hot water 
back is connected with the plate G, and by means of which said hot water back may be 
either readily removed at any time, or applied in such manner that the directions of its 
water pipes may be disposed so as to accommodate the bath boiler, into which they arc 
usually led; or whatever side of the range the said bath boiler may be placed, the said 
improvements, consisting, 1st, in the connecting piece H, and the attachments of it, and 
O.v hot water back, the whole being made to operate together, substantially in the man- 
ner as above set forth. 2d, In a second set of attachments (fixed in the opposite face of 
the water back) in combination with the first set thereof, as described. 

"I also claim the peculiar arrangement of Hues, which lead the smoke and volatile pro- 
ducts of combustion directly around the oven, the said arrangement of flues causing the 
heat to course against one-half of the bottom of the oven, next into another flue, which 
takes it backwards and against the other half of the bottom of the oven, thence up a flue 
against the back of the oven, thence through a flue extending over and against half of the 
top of the oven, thence into and through another flue, which carries it backwards and over 
and against the top of the oven, and conveys it to the chimney or discharge flue; not 
meaning to include in such arrangement the radiating chamber, or space, Y Z, hereinbe- 
1 • ■ mentioned. 

••And I also claim the two recesses Im, and two flue plates/) q. applied to the plate K, 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 237 

in combination with the valve openings X A, their damper and cam plate, as applied to 
the top plate of the oven frame, and used under an arrangement of over flues, substan- 
tially as described, the same allowing of the adaptation of the oven to either side of the 
fire place, or the use of two such ovens and their frames, in connexion with the fireplace, 
all essentially as herein before stated. 

"I also claim the improvement by which the oven can be raised and readily removed, 
and by which the smoke is prevented from passing underneath the partition which sepa- 
rates the flues on top of the oven, the same consisting in the sliding or gravitating plate 
G', affixed to the partition, and made to operate substantially in the manner specified." 

26. For an Improvement in the Bellows for Musical Instruments,- Marvin Smith, New 
Haven, Connecticut, February 25. 

"My improvement consists principally in combining the reeds generally used in these 
and similar instruments, with an elastic wind chest, made in such a manner and of such 
materials as to be capable of expanding and contracting, thereby dispensing with a part 
or all of the common bellows used in such like instruments." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the method herein described of making or 
constructing the wind chest commonly used in seraphins, melodeons, and all similar 
musical instruments, with one or more sides, made of gum elastic, or other elastic ma- 
terial, and in such way and manner as to be capable of expanding and contracting, or of 
being increased or diminished in size, and with the aid of metallic or other springs, to 
answer all the purposes of the common bellows generally used in these and similar in- 
struments, substantially as described." 

27. For an Improvement in Applying Friction Rollers to Hubs and Axles,- Joseph B. 
Wilson, Townsend's Inlet, New Jersey, and Stacy Wilson, Kensington, Pennsyl- 
vania, February 25. 
"Our invention consists in furnishing each wheel with a separate axle, or shaft, wdiich is 
arranged to play outwards from or inwards towards the central line of the carriage, while 
the weight is supported on friction wheels." 

Claim* — "What we claim as our improvement, in the herein described method of 
applying friction rollers to the axles of wheel carriages, is the interposition between the 
bearing of the axle and the faces of the friction rollers of a loose sleeve, through which 
the axle is free to slide endwise, while it, at the same time, carries the sleeve round with 
it, in its rotation, the sleeve having a groove in its outer periphery to receive the friction 
rollers, and prevent them from moving endwise on the collar." 

28. For Improvements in Planing Machines,- John D. Beers and Isaac Winston, Phila- 

delphia, Pennsylvania, February 25. 

Claim. — "What we claim is, 1st, the combination of the shifting bed plate witli the 
planes Z, fig. 1, constructed in the manner herein described, the planes presenting any de- 
sired part of their edge, for cutting the surface of the board, after the tonguing and groov- 
ing has been performed by the circular saws. 

"We also claim as the rotating arms It, fig. 1, with the cover, fig. 4, combined with the 
plane Z, fig. 1, substantially in the manner and for the purposes herein set forth." 

29. For an Improvement in Electro-Magnetic Engines,- Thomas C. Avery, City of New 
York, February 25. 

"The nature of my invention consists in combining in pairs, four or more electro-mag- 
nets, so as to present their poles towards a common centre, and having space enough in- 
tervening between the poles of the magnets for an axis." 

Claim. — "I claim the use and maimer of arranging the helices and poles of the electro- 
magnets, in combination with the revolving bars, or setts of bars: that is to say, the helices 
being upon the bends of the magnets, from which the poles of the magnets extend towards 
and near to the centre of motion, and the revolving bars, or armatures, extending outwards 
from the centre of motion, and embracing the poles of the magnets successively, as it 
rotates, for producing a magnetic multiplying power engine, substantially, in parts and 
principle, as herein set forth." 

238 American Patents. 

30. For an Improved Connexion for the Beams and Columns of Iron Buildings; Jos. 
Banks, City of New York, February 25. 
Claim. — "What I claim therein, is the method herein described, of securing together, 
the beams and columns of cast iron fronts for houses, by means of the lugs, with their 
ilanches on the upper and under sides of the ends of the beam, and the projections on the 
inside, at the top and base of the columns, as herein fully shown and represented." 

31. For an Improvement in Sad-Irons,- Edward Clapp, assignor to Edward Clapp and 
George Alden, Dedham, Massachusetts, February 25. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the above described improvement, in the 
construction of the bottom of the polishing iron, the same consisting in making it with 
ridges or projections, and concavities, substantially as herein before explained." 

32. For an Improved Double-Acting Spring Hinge; Theodore F. Engelbrecht, City of 
New York, February 25. 
Claim. — "I wish it to be distinctly understood, that I do not claim the 'combination of 
an adjustable, curved, inclined plane, with a portion of a hinge, and an adjustable bearing 
roller, with the other portion of the hinge.' But what I do claim as new, is the manner of 
combining the helical springs, I and M, with the cylindrical rotating tumbler, J, and 
cylindrical sectional case, so that by the rotation of the cylindrical tumbler, J, the heart- 
shaped projection, R, will be made to traverse over the inclined plane, I, and cause the 
tumbler, J, to rise and fall, and thus compress and expand the helical springs lengthways, 
then coil, and simultaneously therewith, wind and unwind said helical springs around 
the spindle, F, and thus cause them to act, (by the motion of the door, in either direction,) 
by torsion and expansion, to close the door when it shall have been opened, as described 
and represented." 

33. For an Improvement in Extension Tables; Francis Hoguet, Philadelphia, Pennsyl- 
vania, February 25. 
Claim. — "Having thus fully described the construction and operation of my improve- 
ment of extension tables, what I claim therein as new and of my invention, is the ar- 
rangement of a screw, or other equivalent device, in combination with the slides, in such a 
manner, that a screw, or its equivalent, of sufficient length to move out one pair of slides, 
will move out any number desired, substantially in the manner and for the purpose set 

34. For an Improvement in Cooking Stoves,- William Sours, Mt. Jackson, Virginia, 
February 25. 

"My improvement consists in anew arrangement of the flues which surround the ovens, 
&r., by wbich the heat is more equally diffused throughout their extent than has been 
hitherto done; and by commencing the several flues at the four corners of the fire cham- 
ber, and causing them to meet and unite under the middle of the stove, their courses are 
made of nearly equal length, and consequently, the quantity of heated air passing through 
them, is equally divided between them." 

Claim. — "What I claim as new therein, is the transverse partition, c, in combination 
with the arrangement of front and back flues, as above described, for causing the several 
currents to unite, after having traversed courses of nearly equal length, as set forth." 

35. For an Improvement in Machinery for Turning Irregular Forms,- AbnerLane, 
Killingsworth, Connecticut, February 25. 

"The nature of my invention consists in cutting any irregular form, by means of any 
required number of cutters, mounted on one or more rotary shafts, or cylinders, eacli and 
all of the said cutters being formed so as to give the required form to the article to be 
cut or formed." 

Claim. — "I do not claim merely the employment of two or more cutter wheels, or cutter 
shafts, or cylinders, provided with any number of cutters, of any required form, for cutting 
the whole surface of, and forming articles of any irregular form without the use of the 

American Patents which issued in February, 1851. 239 

model of the article to be formed. But I claim this, only when the cutting cylinders are 
sustained, revolved, and carried to and from the block to be turned, by a revolving cylinder, 
in whose periphery they are placed, without any longitudinal motion, while the block 
revolves slowly, without any longitudinal or lateral motion, substantially as described." 

36. For an Improvement in Spring Hinges,- Henry W. Sabin and George Drew, Ca- 
nandaigua, New York, February 25. 

"Our improvement consists in the combination of a door hinge and spring, having apiece 
in the middle of the hinge, working on the same centre, but independent of either wing, 
to which piece, on one side, the helical spring is attached, and on the other side a pro- 
jection, with a hole therein, by means of which, and a pin, the spring can be engaged and 
disengaged, when the door is shut, by simply inserting or withdrawing the pin, without 
putting an additional tension in the one case, or slacking the spring in the other. Thus, 
the action of the spring may be used, or dispensed with, and the door made self-closing, 
or not, as may be required, at any moment." 

Claim. — "Having thus described our improvements, what we claim as new therein, 
is the piece, /, to one side of which the spring is attached, and which has, on the other 
side, a projection with a hole therein, by means of which, and a pin, the spring can be en- 
gaged and disengaged, when the door is shut, substantially in the manner and for the 
purposes described.' 

37. For an Improvement in Machines for Arranging and Feeding Screw Blanks,- Thos. 
J. Sloan, City of New York, February 25. 

"The object of my invention is to take screw blanks, in the various stages of their man- 
ufacture (or pins, or other like articles,) from a hopper, into which they are thrown, and 
present them in regular succession to the griping jaws, in the various machines, in which 
they are either shaved round the head, nicked or threaded, or in which any other operation 
is to be performed, requiring them to be presented in succession, and each in the same 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, are the lifters which select and lift the blanks, 
etc.. from the hopper, substantially as specified, in combination with ways, or conductors, 
or the equivalents therereof, substantially as specified, into or on to which the blanks, 
etc., are transferred, as specified. And I also claim giving to the lifters or to the inclined 
ways, or their equivalents, a lateral motion, in combination with a stop, or detector, 
substantially as specified, for the purpose of arresting the operation of the lifters, until a 
further supply is required, as specified." 

Re-issces for Febrcart, 1851. 

1. For an Improvement in Tanning Leather hy Tannin and Acids; Harmon Hibbard, 
Henrietta, assignor to Wm. W. Eeid, Rochester, New York, patented October 16, 
1849, re-issued February 1 1. 

Claim. — "1st., I claim the process of removing hair and wool from hides and skins, and 
of "liming" them, so called, preparatory to tanning, by the use of a composition of lime, 
wood ashes, or potash, and of salt, called composition No. 1, in the manner above de- 

"I also claim the use of a composition of lime and wood ashes, or potash, without the 
salt, but I do not claim either of these materials, separately by itself. 

2d., I claim the process of tanning hides and skins, by the use of any kind of tannin, 
in combination either with the muriatic acid of commerce, or with muriatic acid gene- 
rated by a mixture of sulphuric acid, and salt in water, with the tannin, in the manner 
substantially as above described." 

2. For an Improved Arrangement nf Steam Boiler and Furnace, thereof; Horace Board- 
man, Plattsburg, New York, patented August 14, 1849, re-issued February 25. 
"My invention consists in constructing the fire chamber of a boiler, and the surrounding 
water space, both of increased capacity at their upper extremities, where the heat is most 

240 American Patents. 

intense, and in combining; therewith a descending flue, by means of which the gaseous 
products of the combustion are conveyed downward, to be thence discharged into the 

Claim. — "What I claim as my improvement in steam boilers, is the combination of a 
fire chamber and a water casing, the upper horizontal sections of both of which are greater 
than their lower, with a descending flue, the fire chamber and water casing being so ar- 
ranged, with respect to each other, that the large sections of the one adjoin the larger 
sections of the other, substantially in the manner and for the purposes herein set forth. 

"I likewise claim the injection of a jet or jets of air at the flue or passages, which con- 
nect the combustion chamber with the descending flue, for the purpose of igniting the 
gases, and retarding their progressive motion towards the bottom of the gas chamber." 

Designs fou February, 1851. 
1. For a Design for Cooking Stoves,- Samuel A. House, Mechanicsville, New York, 
February 4. 
Claim. — "What I clain as new, is the design of cook stove, substantially the same as 
herein described and represented." 

2. For a Design for Parlor Stoves,- Samuel A. House, Mechanicsville, New York, Feb- 
ruary 4. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new, is the design of stove plate, substantially the same 
as herein described and represented." 

3. For a Design for Umbrella Stands,- Edward J. Delany, assignor to Heins & 
Adamson, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, February 18. 
Claim. — "What your petitioner claims as new, is the peculiar ornamental design, or 
figure, as shown in the accompanying drawing." 

4. For a Design for Cooking Stoves,- Samuel H. Sailor, assignor to Warnick, Lei- 
brandt & Co., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, February 25. 

"The design consists in the application to stoves, with suitable mouldings, of an orna- 
ment formed by combining rays with an eye and ribbon." 

Claim. — "VVhat I claim as my invention, is the application of the above design to cook- 
ing stoves." 

1. For an Improvement in Paper Moulds,- William Brewer and John Smith, Surrey 
county, England, March 4; ante' dated February 12, 1849. 

"Our invention has for its object the manufacture of paper and card board, with a 
water mark, exhibiting an uniformity and peculiarity of design not attainable in the pro- 
cess of manufacture as hitherto conducted. Designs, figures, or devices, commonly called 
water marks, are of various descriptions, and well known; but designs, figures, or devices, 
as water marks, of the kind which we can produce, have hitherto been unattainable with 
moulds, or apparatus of the ordinary construction; and our invention consists in a new 
or improved mould for the manufacture of paper, for the purpose of producing better 
water marks therein than have been effected by moulds as ordinarily constructed." 

Claim. — "We hereby declare that we claim as our invention the improved moulds for 
the manufacture of paper, as made in the manner herein specified, that is to say, by 
stamping or forming such moulds, partly or wholly, in and by dies, and afterwards re- 
moving the back of such moulds by filing, or other process analogous thereto." 

2. For Improvements in Power Governors,- Junius Judson, Jr., City of New York, 
March 4. 
[The publication of the description of this patent is postponed for the present, at the 
request ot the patentee, who intends taking out patents in Europe.] 

American Patents which issued in March, 1851. 241 

3. For an Improvement in Calculating Machines,- John W. Nystrom, Philadelphia, 
Pennsylvania, March 4. 

"My invention is based upon the fact that the multiplication and division of numbers 
may be performed by the addition and subtraction of their logarithms, and my machine 
is constructed in such manner that this addition and subtraction is effected by moving a 
pair of graduated radial arms upon a disk, on whose surface a series of curves are drawn, 
which, by their intersection with the arms, show the value of the result. The curves on 
the disk, in combination with the radial arms, serve not only to effect ordinary arithmeti- 
cal calculations, but also to solve trigonometric formulae." 

Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is, 1st, the logarithmic curves of the outer 
scale, in combination with the diagonals and graduated arms, the curves being laid out, 
substantially in the manner herein set forth. 

"2d, I claim the trigonometric curves of the inner scale, in combination with the 
graduated arms and logarithmic curves of the outer scale, the curves being laid out sub- 
stantially in the manner herein described. 

"3d, I claim the two graduated arms, constructed in such manner that they can be 
moved in connexion or independently, substantially in the manner and for the purposes 
herein set forth." 

4. For an Improved Method of Bracing the Water Spaces of Boilers,- Bernard O'Neill, 
Reading, Pennsylvania, March 4. 
"The nature of my invention consists in the use of stationary valves, or ribands of 
sleeves, in the construction of boilers, fire-boxes, &c, tor locomotive and other engines, for 
bracing and supporting the shells of said boilers or fire-boxes." 

',; Claim. — "Having thus fully described my invention, what I claim therein as new, is the 
method herein described of bracing and securing the shells of boilers, or fire-boxes, of 
locomotive and other engines, by means of ribands of sleeves, or starting sleeves, so that 
when a bolt or bolts are to be removed to cure leaks, or to renew the sheets in the fire- 
box, the sleeves will remain in place, serving as a guide to punch the new sheets by, 
and affording greater support to the shells, both in backing out the old and riveting the 
new bolts, as herein fully described and shown." 

5. For an Improvement in Peppermint Droppers; Henry H. Snow, New Haven, Con- 
necticut, March 4. 
"The nature of my invention consists in the construction of a peppermint dropper, 
with a revolving cutter, and in the application of motion, either to such dropper, by means 
of a railway, the object upon which the drops are to fall being stationary, or to the object 
upon which the drops are to fall, and which I shall term 'the dropping sheet,' the dropper 
being stationary, or to both the dropper and the dropping sheet at one and the same time." 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is, 1st, the combination of a 'peppermint 
dropper,' by combining a sugar kettle with a revolving cutter. And, 2d, the combination 
of such dropper either with a railway, the dropping sheet being stationary, or with a mova- 
ble dropping sheet, the dropper itself being stationary, or with a railway and a movable 
dropping sheet combined; all substantially as herein described." 

G. For a Variable Cut-off, Regulated by the Governor,- Henry Waterman, City of 
New York, March 4. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is regulating a variable cut- off* valve, by 
a motion derived from and corresponding to that of the governor, by means of a toe or 
vibrating lever attached to the rock shaft, acted upon by revolving pins or cams, when 
cither the cams are made to vary in position with respect to the toe, or the toe in length 
with respect to the cams; the whole machinery being constructed and acting substantially 
as herein described." 

7. For an Improvement in Dressing Mill Stones; Edmund P. Gaines, Nacogdoches, 
Texas, March 4. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the new and improved mode of dressing 
mill stones, which I have described above ;it. fully and correctly as 1 can."' 

Vol. XXI. — Third Seiiiks.— No. 3. — Ai-niL, 1851. 21 

242 American Patents. 

8. For a Method of Adjusting the Stroke of Trip-Hammers; Luther Briggs, Jr., Brain- 
tree, Massachusetts, March 11. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the construction of a trip-hammer, in 
■which the hammer is raised by cams, not acting directly upon the hammer or the helve, 
or a projection from the same, commonly called the lifting leg; but by the intervention of 
a movable joint, so constructed as to grasp or clutch the lifting leg, at any required 
height, the position of the same being governed by the regulator, which maybe constructed 
in the form of an inclined plane, or any equivalent contrivance, for raising and depressing 
the joint, at the will of the operator; the whole being constructed to perform the peculiar 
services, substantially in the manner herein before set forth in this my specification." 

9. For an Improvement in Machines for Climbing Poles,- Henry D. Chapman, Balti- 
more, Maryland, March 11. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of the grappling levers 
with the sandals and handles, for the purpose of climbing telegraph poles, masts, &c, and 
holding the climber at any desired height, so as to give him free use of his hands when 
at rest, as herein described and represented." 

10. For Improvements in Cast Iron Car Wheels,- Perry G. Gardiner, City of New York, 
March 11. 

"The nature of my invention consists in constructing a railroad car wheel of three 
principal pieces, or members of the same, which pieces are held together with screw bolts; 
that is to say, I make two cast iron side plates, each forming one-half of the eye, hub, 
arms, a horizontal or right angle flanch to the plate, for the tire to rest upon, and a 
vertical flanch at the outside periphery of the plate, to hold in place the tire, combined 
with a wrought iron tire, which, when bolted together, constitute the entire wheel." 

Claim. — "I do not make any claim to the combination, self-considered, of wrought 
iron tire with a cast iron body, or yet for full plate sides, or for internal arms in section, 
when cast solid with the side plates of a railroad car wheel, for such have all been known 
and used before; but what I do claim as new, is the precise manner in which I have con- 
structed and put together the parts of my wheel, by which, thus formed, they are free of 
strain from shrinkage in cooling, and have semi-internal flanches, as described, to protect 
the wheel when in use against lateral strain, and are bolted together and combined with a 
wrought iron tire, in the manner set forth." 

11. For an Improvement in Machinery for Making Tires by Continuous Rolling,- 
Perry G. Gardiner, City of New York, March 11. 

Claim. — "What I claim as new, is stopping the advancing movement of the movable 
towards the stationary roller, when the tire shall have attained its proper section, by means 
of self-acting mechanism, acting and constructed substantially as herein described. 

"I also claim the combination of belts, pulleys, clutches, screws, and screw wheels, with 
the sway-bar and triggers, by which a self-acting, advancing, and retrograding motion is 
given to the movable roller, each motion changing to the other, when caused so to do, by 
the hand of the operator, but self-arrested and stopped by the set of the triggers, sub- 
stantially as specified." 

12. For an Improvement in Connecting Trucks with Car Bodies,- Thomas P. How, 
Buffalo, New York, March 11. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is connecting the bodies of cars to the trucks 
by two bolts to each truck, working in the holes or mortises above described and repre- 
sented; the whole being constructed and operating substantially as herein set forth." 

13. For an Improved Use of Slides in Bee Hives,- Nathaniel Potter, Buffalo, New York, 
March 11. 
Claim. — "Having thus fully described my invention, what I claim therein as new, is 
the manner herein described of arranging the moth apartment with glass, paper, or other 

American Patents which issued in March, 1851. 243 

thin material, overlaying the vent holes in the top of the box, said glass or paper having 
placed upon it old comb, or other suitable material, so as to be warmed by the bees in the 
boxes below, and ventilated as described, thus attracting the moths into said apartment, 
while they are at night entirely excluded from the bee boxes by means of the ventilating 
buttons, as described. 

"I also claim the arrangement by which the upper box or boxes are held in their places, 
while the one below is removed, and another inserted in its place. 

"Also, the arrangement at the rear and bottom of each box, by which the tin slide is 
removed, thus allowing a convenient opportunity for clearing the bottom of the bee box, 
as described." 

14. For an Improved Window Curtain Fastening; Hugh Guycr, Albany, New York, 
March 11. 
Claim — "I claim the construction of rack pulleys for window shades, by fixing the 
pulley over which the cord of the shade roller runs, upon a stem, having a plate sliding on 
the front outer face of the rack box, attached to a thin plate or fan passing through a slot 
in said face, extending the length of the box, the said pin projecting upwards and termi- 
nating in a point, which acts as a pawl against ratchet teeth made in the bottom of said 
box, or else the said pin projecting downward, and having a cross pin through it, acting 
against ratchet teeth in the upper and inner side of said box; the said stem and plate, in 
addition to the sliding motion along the box, having an oscillating motion on the upper or 
lower edge of the plate, by means of which the upward pressure of the cord on the pulley 
holds the pawl or pin against the ratchet teeth, the downward pressure of the hand carries 
the pawl or pin out of the line of the teeth, and permits the pulley to be moved upwards 
when required, substantially as set forth in this specification." 

15. For Improvements in Steam Drilling Machines,- Joseph W. Fowle, Boston, Massa- 
chusetts, March 1 1 . 

"In machines which have been recently devised for splitting and dressing stone, &c.,by 
steam, the dressing or cutting tool has been so connected to the piston rod as to be worked 
by the direct action of the steam. This feature I have incorporated in my improvements, 
and I have also combined with it an arrangement for supporting the engine, and the drill- 
ing tool which it drives, in a frame which may swing and be raised and lowered, so as to 
drill in any direction and at any height; also, a mechanical provision for turning the tool, 
and one for advancing it as the drilling progresses; and furthermore, an improved mode of 
preventing the direct action of the steam from throwing the piston, as the tool is drawn 
forward and back, through either head of the cylinder." 

Claim . — "What I claim as my invention, is the combination of a direct action steam 
drill, in which both engine and drill are mounted on a frame, which slides in a swinging 
frame, capable of being adjusted in any required position with the apparatus, substantially 
as herein above described, which is connected with and actuated by the cross head of the 
engine for causing the sliding frame to move along the swinging frame towards the rock." 

16. For an Improvement in Air-Tight Franklin Stoves; Rensselaer D. Granger, Albany, 

New York, March 11. 

Claim.' — "What I claim as my invention, is making the fire-box with closed plate in 
front and behind, with a grate surface at bottom, occupying about one-third of the space 
between the front and back stove plates, to constitute hot air chambers front and back, 
when such fire-box is combined with a sliding damper at bottom, substantially as and for 
the purpose specified. 

"And I also claim, in combination with a fire chamber constructed as above specified, 
and governed at bottom with a sliding damper, as specified, the open front with vertically 
sliding doors, as described, and for the purpose specified." 

17. For an Improvement in Securing Daguerreoti/pes in Monumental Stones,- Solon 

Jenkins, West Cambridge, Massachusetts, March 11. 
Claim. — "What I claim as my invention, is the mode herein described of securing the 
portrait plate against injury (from moisture or otherwise) by means of the two glass 

244 American Patents. 

plates D and F, the plate I, and the back of plate H, the whole being arranged and com- 
bined substantially as herein set forth." 

IS. For an Improvement in Cooking Stoves,- James Greer and Rufus J. King, Dayton, 
Ohio, March 11. 

"The great difficulty in cooking stoves is to equalize the heat and to cause it to act on 
all parts of the ovens alike; after various trials, we have jointly invented a stove with two 
ovens, in which we attain an equalization of the heat, by arranging three sets of diving flues, 
which extend athwart the whole breadth of the stove, except at the front fire doors and the 
central ascending flue in the back. We have also jointly invented a gravitating damper, 
the facility in making and in operating which makes it answer the purpose required, to our 
full satisfaction." 

( laim. — "Having thus fully and clearly described the nature, construction and opera- 
tion of our joint invention, what we claim therein as new, is the combination of the diving 
flue d as described, with the diving flues a and / as described, the said flues occupying 
the whole breadth of the stove, with the exception of the space occupied by the fire doors 
and the central reverting flue in the back. 

"We also claim the gravitating damper /, operated as described, that is to say, by the rod 
??, with its curved eye m, and the pendent lever i, with its bend p and catch o, the said 
damper being located upon the division plate between the back diving flues and the cen- 
tral back reverting flue." 

19. For an Improvement in Piano-forte Action,- John Ruck, City of New York, 
March 11. 
Claim. — "What I claim as new in my invention, is, 1st, hanging the hammer shank 
on a hinge or joint d at a distance from its end, and effecting its communication with the fly 
lever or jack by means of a lever L, which is hung on a fulcrum i at a distance from 
either end, and is connected at one end by a hinged or jointed link with the end of the 
hammer shank, in such a manner, that when the fly lever is raised by the key, the end 
of the hammer shank is drawn down and the hammer thrown up to the string, or by any 
other means, substantially the same. 

2d, "The universal repeating spring m, is attached to the lever or butt upon which is 
formed the projection It, or its equivalent, through which the fly lever communicates with 
the hammer for the purpose of raising it, and working upon the end of the fly lever, in the 
manner substantially as and for the purpose herein set forth : this I claim without refer- 
ence to the precise form of the projection, or of the spring herein shown, as various modi- 
fications may be made for producing the same effect. 

3d, "Attaching the check wire to a hanging or hinged butt q, operated upon by the key 
in the manner substantially as described, so as to produce the same effect as if attached 
to the key, for the purpose "of allowing the key to be easily taken out. 

4th, "Securing or placing the regulating screw r, for controlling or regulating the es- 
capement of the fly lever, in an arm N or its equivalent, upon the lever upon which the fly- 
lever acts, by which the action of the said screw upon the fly lever is more gradual and 
easy, and the jarring or concussion produced when the screw is stationary is avoided." 

20. For an Improvement in .Machines for Turning, Boring, Sfc.,- Martin Way and 
Thos. R. Way, Paintersville, Ohio, March 11. 

"Our machine is constructed to bend metals to curves, to any required radius, and to 
bore, drill, and turn, both wood and metals : it is particularly applicable to the business of 
carriage making, as it embodies in a single machine the means of effecting many of those 
mechanical operations which are required in constructing wheel carriages, and which have 
heretofore been effected in separate machines." 

Claim. "What we claim in the foregoing as our invention, is the tool and block holder 

herein described, consisting of two upright frames, capable of movement towards each 
other, and of being clamped .it a greater or less distance apart, as may be required, to adapt 
them to holding blocks of different sizes, and tools of different lengths or forms, each 
frame being provided with upright parallel guides, carrying adjustable jaws, for holding, 
boring or turning tools at different heights and angles, and to aid in holding blocks of 
irregular forms, these frames being mounted upon a carriage capable of being turned or 
moved, right or left, so as to hold the tool, or present the substance to be bored, in the re- 
quired position, substantially as herein set forth." 

American Patents which issued in March, 1851. 245 

21. For an Improvement in Copying Presses,- A. A. Wilder, Detroit, Michigan, 
March 11. 

"The nature of my invention consists in the use of two flat pressing plates, one of which 
being vertical, works on a slide, and lias an adjusting screw for regulating the degree of 
pressure or width between the plates, according to the thickness or the nature of the ma- 
terial being pressed, and the second plate being fitted so in the table or bedplate, that it may 
have a movement so as to open like a hinge; and it possesses, also, an adjusting screw or 
box, through which the screw pin passes, and which is attached by link rods to the handle 
or lever, having its fulcrum on the opposite plate; the loose or hinge hung plate, being 
opened and shut by the motion up or down of the lever handle, which produces the pres- 

Claim. — "What I claim as my [invention, is the use of a lever handle I, having its 
fulcrum on the pressing plate B, attached to the opposite plate F by links H H,as shown, 
working in the manner described, in combination with the adjusting arrangements C E G 
g, for the purposes expressed, and operating together as shown, or in any other substan- 
tially similar manner." 

22. For an Improvement in the Teeth of Saws,- George F. Woolston, Orangeburg, South 
Carolina, Marcli 11. 
Claim. — ''I claim as my invention, the invention of teeth in circular saw blades, of the 
form and for the purpose above set forth." 

1. For an Improvement in Machines for Making ~\Yire Heddles; Abijah J. Williams, 
Utica, New York; patented September 11, 1849, date of disclaimer February 24, 1851 . 
"The subscriber further represents, that he is the sole and exclusive owner of the said 
letters patent, and of the right, interest and property therein and thereby secured; and al- 
though he did not intend, in or by the specifications and drawings upon and in reference 
to which said letters patent were issued, (and of which copies are annexed to, and form a 
part of said letters patent,) to represent or claim that he was the original or first inventor 
of the wheel, collar, or flanch, with a sliding tooth and pulley, and treddle, or other device, 
hereinafter particularly mentioned, or of any part thereof; and he insists that said specifi- 
cations and drawings do not, when rightly understood, represent of claim that he was such 
inventor; and he also insists, that said letters patent do not, when rightly understood, as- 
sume to confer on him any right, as the supposed assumed or alleged inventor thereof, or 
of any part thereof; yet, in order to guard against any mistake or misconstruction, in these 
respects, the subscriber states, 

1. "That he did not mean to assert, claim or represent, in and by said specifications or 
drawings, that he was the original or first inventor of the wheel mentioned as wheel, fig. 
8, in said specifications and drawings. 

2. "Nor did he mean to assert, claim or represent, in and by said specifications or drawing?, 
that he was the inventor of the collar or flanch, with a sliding tooth, which are partially 
represented on the drawing, figure 1, near letter Q, and also partially represented on the 
drawing figure 2, at that end of the cylinder where the receiving and discharging hook rod 
shows the hook, and near letter 11. 

3. "Nor did he mean to assert, claim or represent, in and by said specifications or draw- 
ings, that he was the inventor of the cord pulley oi heddle, partially represented on the 
drawing, figure 1, which cord, as there shown, extends from said pulley, near letter C, to 
said heddle. 

4. "Nor did he design or intend by said specifications or drawings to claim, assert, or 
represent, that his invention would make a heddle, with a slack twist in the half, or purl 
thereof, which is towards the end where the wire is doubled. 

"And the subscriber says, that if said specifications and drawings import or mean that 
any or either of the aforesaid things was or were invented by him, or that his invention, 
as claimed by him; would make a heddle with any such slack twist, as aforesaid, the Mann- 
was and were, by and through inadvertence, accident and mistake, not being so designed 
or intended by him, and he hereby fully disclaims the several matters and things aforesaid, 
numbered above 1, 2, 3, 4, and each and every part thereof, under and pursuant to the 
seventh section of the Act of Congress, entitled "an Act in addition to the Act to promote 
the progress of science and useful arts," approved March 3d, 1837, and under and pursuant 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

to the law in such cases made and provided; insisting, however, as he does, that the same 
are not, nor is any part thereof, claimed in and by said specifications and drawings, or 
cither of them, or embraced in said letters patent; this disclaimer being made for greater 
caution, and to guard against misconstruction and mistake in regard to said matters." 


.Marble Sawing and Polishing Machinery, Worked by Steam Power. By 
Charles Holtzapffel.* 

Marble has of late years been extensively worked by machinery driven by 
steam power; the processes are closely analogous in principle to those 
pursued by hand, but with various modifications of the apparatus, and it 
is now proposed to explain briefly some of the peculiarities of the machine 

Fig. 1. 

In the simplest application of machinery to sawing marble, as for making 
one or two cuts in a large block, the construction of the ordinary stone 
saw is closely followed, but the frame is made much stronger, of squared 
* From the London Artizan, for January, 1851. 

Marble Sawing and Polishing Machinery. 247 

limber firmly bolted together, and stayed with chains; to constitute three 
sides of a rectangular frame; the place of the pole and tightening chain 
of the saw, is occupied by two fixed beams, and the saw is held and 
stretched by means of two clamps, with screws passing through the ends 
of the frame, and tightened by nuts on the outside. The saw frame works 
between vertical guide posts to keep it upright, and it is reciprocated 
horizontally by a connecting rod fixed to a crank driven by the engine. 
The connecting rod is attached to the frame by a loop, which can be placed 
at various heights so as always to keep the stroke of the connecting rod 
nearly horizontal, notwithstanding the gradual descent of the saw in the 

These saw frames are sometimes made as large as 16 feet long, and 10 
feet high, for cutting huge blocks of marble; and to prevent the great 
weight of these frames from pressing on the cut, they are suspended at 
each end by chains or slings which vibrate with the saw, and are connected 
with a counterpoise weight, that is adjusted to allow of the necessary 
pressure for the cutting, which is effected with sand and water supplied 
in the same manner as for the stone saw used by hand, but the introduction 
of the guide principle, renders the chasing of the stone for the entry of 
the saw unnecessary. In some cases smaller saws of similar construction 
are used for cutting thick slabs into narrow slips, and sometimes several 
cuts are made at once by an equal number of saw blades, arranged in a 
rectangular frame, that is suspended horizontally by vibrating slings, and 
works between vertical guide posts. 

In the horizontal sawing machine for marble patented by Mr. James 
Tulloch in 1824, the entire arrangements are combined in a very effective 
manner, for cutting a block of marble into a number of parallel slabs, of 
any thickness, at the one operation. The iron framework of the machine, 
shown in fig. 1, consists of 4 vertical posts strongl) connected together at 
the top and bottom, to form a stationary frame from 10 to 14 feet long, 4 
to 5 feet wide, and 8 to 12 feet high, within which the block of marble to 
be sawn is placed. The two upright posts at each end of the stationary 
fiame have, on their insides opposite to each other, perpendicular grooves, 
within each pair of which slides up and down a square vertical frame; to 
the lower end of each of these slides is affixed a spindle carrying two guide 
pulleys, or riggers, upon which the horizontal saw frame rests, and is 
reciprocated backwards and forwards. The saw frame is thus traversed 
within the fixed framing, and supported upon the four guide pulleys of the 
vertical slides, which latter are themselves suspended by chains coiled 
upon two small drums placed overhead. On the same spindle with the 
drums is a large wheel, to which a counterpoise weight is suspended by 
a chain. The weight of the counterpoise is so adjusted as to allow the 
saw frame to descend when left to itself, and which thus supplies the 
necessary pressure for causing the penetration of the saws. 

The saw frame is made rectangular, find from 2 to 3 feet longer than 
the distance between the vertical slides, in order to permit of the hori- 
zontal traverse of the saws, which is from 18 to 20 inches. To allow of 
the blades being fixed in the frame with the power of separate adjustment, 
every blade is secured by rivets in a clamp or buckle at each end; the one 
extremity of the buckle embraces the saw, the other is made as a hook, the 

248 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

buckle at one end of the saw is hooked upon a horizontal bar fixed across 
the end of the saw frame, and the opposite end of the frame has a groove 
extending its entire width, through which a separate hook, provided with 
a vertical tightening wedge, is inserted for every saw, which thus admits of 
being replaced without deranging the position of the neighboring blades. 

The distances between the saws, and their parallelism with the sides of 
the frame, are adjusted by means of iron blocks made of the exact thick- 
ness required in the slabs of marble; the blocks and blades are placed 
alternately, and every blade is separately strained by its tightening wedge 
until it is sufficiently tense; the blocks are sustained between two trans- 
verse bars, called gage bars, and are allowed to remain between the blades 
to give them additional firmness. 

The traverse of the saw frame is given by a jointed connecting rod, 
attached by an adjustable loop to a long vibrating pendulum, that is put 
in motion by a pair of connecting rods, placed one over the other, and 
leading from two cranks driven by the engine. All three connecting rods 
admit of vertical adjustment on the pendulum. The connecting rod of the 
saw frame is placed intermediately between the other two, but its exact 
position is regulated by the height at whtch the saws are working, as it is 
suspended by a chain and counterpoise weight, which allow it to descend 
gradually downwards on the pendulum, with the progress of the cut, so 
as always to keep the connecting rod nearly horizontal. 

In the London Marble Works four of these sawing machines of different 
sizes are grouped together, with the driving shaft and pendulums in the 
middle, and so arranged that each pair of saw frames reciprocate in oppo- 
site directions at the same time, in order to balance the weight, and reduce 
the vibration. 

Another mode of traversing the saw frame sometimes adopted, is by 
means of a vertical frame that is reciprocated horizontally on slides, and 
the connecting rod, instead of being jointed, is fixed rigidly to the saw 
frame, and slides upon a vertical rod. Various other unimportant modi- 
fications in the construction of the machines are also adopted. 

One of the most difficult points in the application of these machines, 
was found to be the supplymg of the sand and water mechanically to the 
whole of the cuts at the same time. This is now successfully effected by 
the following arrangement. Above the block of marble to be sawn is fixed 
a water cistern, or trough, extending across the whole width of the frame, 
and measuring about 1 foot wide and 1 foot deep; about 20 small cocks 
are arranged along each side of the cistern, and a small but constant 
stream from each of the cocks is received beneath in a little box; a sloping 
channel leads from every box across the bottom of a trough filled with 
sand, which mingles with the water, and flows out in separate streams, 
that are conducted to each of the saw cuts. In the first construction of 
this apparatus for the feed, the sloping channels were led straight across the 
bottom of the sand trough, but it was then found that the water excavated 
little tunnels in the sand, through which it flowed without carrying the 
sand down. This difficulty was overcome by leading the channels across 
the bottom of the trough in a curved line, when viewed in plan. The 
form of the channels is shown in fig. 2, which represents four channels cut 
across the middle of their length, to show their section, from which it will 

Marble Sawing and Polishing Machinery. 249 

be seen that the channels are made as a series of Gothic shaped tunnels, 
supported only on one side, and open on the other for the admission of 
the sand ; the water (lows through these tunnels, and continually washing 
against the convex side of the channel, undermines the sand, which falls 
into the water and is carried down: to assist this action the attendant 
occasionally stirs up the sand to loosen it. There is a sand trough and 
set of channels on each side of the water cistern, so that every saw cut 
receives two streams of sand and water in the course of its length. 

The saws having been adjusted to the 
proper distances for the required slabs, the 
saw frame is raised by means of a windlass 
and the suspended chains attached lo the 
vertical frames, and the block of marble to 
be sawn is mounted upon a low carriage, 
and drawn into its position beneath the 
saws, and adjusted by wedges. The saws 
are then lowered until they rest upon the Fig. 2. 

block, the counterpoise weights are adjust- 
ed, and the mixed sand and water allowed to run upon the saw blades, 
which are put in motion by attaching the connecting rod to the pendulum. 
The sawing then proceeds mechanically until the block is divided into 
slabs, the weight of the saw frame and connecting rod causing them gradu- 
ally to descend with the progress of the cutting. 

To allow the sand and water to flow readily beneath the edges of the 
saw blades, it is desirable that the horizontal frame should be slightly 
lifted at the end of each stroke. This is effected by making the lower 
edges of the frame, which bear upon the guide pulleys, straight for nearly 
the full length of the stroke, but with a short portion at each end made 
as an inclined plane, which on passing over the guide pulleys lifts the 
frame just sufficiently to allow the feed to flow beneath the saws. 

For cutting slabs of marble into narrow pieces, such as shelves, and 
which is effected by hand with grub saws, a machine called a ripping bed 
is employed, in which as many cuts as may be required in the one slab 
are effected simultaneously, by an equal number of circular saws with 
smooth edges, revolving vertically, and fed, as usual, with sand and 
water. This machine, represented in fig. 3, consists of a bench about 
12 or 14 feet long, 6 or 7 wide, and about 2 feet 6 inches high; upon the 
top of the bench is fixed two rails, upon which a platform, mounted on 
pulleys, is drawn slowly forward by a weight. The horizontal axis 
carrying the saws revolves about 9 inches above the platform, and to 
ensure the rotation of the saws, the axis is provided with a projecting rib 
or feather extending its whole length. The saws are made as circular 
plates, about 17 inches diameter when new. The saws, or cutters, are 
clamped between two collars about 6 inches diameter, fitted so as to slide 
upon the spindle, and be retained at any part of its length by side screws. 

The saws having been adjusted to the required distances for the widths 
of the slips to be cut, and fixed by the side screws, the slab of marble is 
embedded in sand upon the platform, and the edge of every saw is 
surrounded on one side with a small heap of moist sand. The saws are 
then set in motion, so as to cut upwards, and the platform is slowly 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

traversed under the saws by the weight, which keeps the slab of marble 
constantly pressing against the edges of the revolving saws, until the slab 
is entirely divided into slips. 

When the saws are new, they nearly reach the upper surface of the plat- 
form, and a moderate thickness of sand, just sufficient to form a bed for 
the slab of marble, raises it high enough to allow the saws to pass entirely 
through the thickness of the slab; but as the saws are reduced in diameter 
by wear, it becomes necessary to employ a thicker layer of sand, or to use 
a supplementary platform to raise the slab to the proper height. To avoid 
this inconvenience, an improvement has been recently introduced by 
mounting the axis of the saws in a vertical slide, which is adjusted by a 
rack and pinion, so as to allow the edges of the saw to penetrate exactly 
to the required depth. 

Fig. 3. 

Circular pieces of marble, such as the tops of round tables, and other 
objects, from about 6 feet diameter to the small circular dots sometimes 
used in tesselated pavements, are sawn to the circular form by means of 
revolving cylindrical cutters, constructed on much the same principle as 
the crown saws for wood. The slab to be sawn is placed horizontally on 
a bench, and the axis of the machine works vertically above it in cylin- 
drical bearings, which allow the spindle to slide through them, so as to 
be elevated or depressed according to circumstances. The spindle is 
suspended at the upper end by a swing collar attached to a connecting 
rod, that is jointed to the middle of a horizontal lever. The weight of 
the vertical rod and cutter supplies the pressure for the cutting, and the 
whole is raised for the admission of the work by a rope, attached to the 
end of the lever, and passed over a pulley, as shown in fig. 4. 

For circles of small diameter, the cutters are made as hollow cylinders 
of sheet iron of various diameters, and each attached by screws to a circular 
disk of cast iron, as shown in section in fig. 6. The cutter is screwed on 

Marble Sawing and Polishing Machinery. 


the lower end of the spindle, just the same as a chuck on a lathe mandrel, 
except that the cylinder is placed vertical instead of horizontal. To en- 
sure free access for the sand and water beneath the cutter, one or two 
notches, about three-quarters of an inch wide, are generally made in the 
lower edge. 

For large circles, the apparatus is made stronger than that shown in fig. 
4, and the vertical spindle is fitted at its lower extremity with a circular 
plate, to which is bolted a wooden cross, shown in plan in fig. 7, and in 
elevation in fig. 8; the cross has radial grooves about 18 inches long near 
the outer extremities of the four arms. The cutters consist of detached 
plates of iron from 6 to 18 inches long, of various widths, according to 
the thickness of the work. The cutters are curved as segments of a 
cylinder, of the particular diameter they are required to cut, and are each 
riveted to a clamp that passes through the radial groove, and is retained 
by a wedge. The number and length of the cutters is solely a matter of 
convenience, as a single cutter, when put in rotation, would make a 
circular groove, and several cutters are only employed in order to expedite 
the process. But every different diameter requires a different curve in the 
cutters, and which must all be placed at exactly the proper distance from 
the centre of rotation. 

Fig. 4. 

Fig. 5. 

Fig. 6. 

J3 &J^j2l^ 



The horizontal bench upon which the marble is laid, is generally a 
temporary structure, adjusted to suit the thickness of the object to be sawn. 
Works of large diameter are seldom more than one or two inches thick, 
but those of small diameter are frequently much thicker, and sometimes 
three or four thin pieces are cemented upon each other, and cut at one 
operation. Short pillars are sometimes sawn out of an irregular block in 
a similar manner, instead of being chipped and turned. And it has been 

252 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

proposed that long cylinders, and tubes of stone, should be cut with cylin- 
ders of sheet iron of corresponding length, put in rotation, and supplied 
with sand and water. 

Marble works of small and medium size, are ground flat upon horizontal 
revolving laps, after the same general method as that pursued by the lapi- 
dary, but with a proportionate increase of size in the lap, which is supplied 
as usual with sand and water. The laps for marble works are made as 
circular plates of cast iron, from G to 14 feet diameter, and about 3 inches 
thick when new; they are mounted in various ways upon vertical spindles, 
so that their upper sides or faces may be about 2 feet 6 inches above the 
ground. Across the face of the lap, or as it is called the sanding plate, 
one or two strong square bars of wood, faced with iron, are fixed so that 
their lower sides may just avoid touching the face of the lap, and their 
edges present perpendicular faces, from 5 to 6 inches high, at right angles 
to the face of the lap. The wooden bars serve as stops, to prevent the 
work from being carried round by the lap, and also as guides to ensure 
the work being ground square. 

The piece of marble is laid fiat upon the lap, with the face to be ground 
downwards, and the side of the work in contact with the guide bar. Water 
is allowed to drip upon the plate from a cistern fixed above, and small 
quantities of sand are thrown on as required. During the progress of the 
work the workman leans upon the marble, the position of which is shifted 
occasionally, to expose both the work and the lap to an equal amount of 
wear, and prevent the formation of ridges, but which is less likely to occur 
with iron laps used for grinding large surfaces of marble, than when small 
objects are applied upon lead laps, as by the lapidary and mechanician. 

The one side of the marble having been reduced to a flat surface, the 
work is turned over to grind the adjoining face, and the first face is held 
in contact with the perpendicular side of the guide bar, in order to pre- 
sent the second face of the work to the lap exactly at right angles to the 
first. When two pieces of similar size are to be ground each on the one 
face and two edges, as for the upright sides of a chimney piece, the two 
pieces of marble are cemented together back to back with plaster of Paris, 
(a process that is called lining,) and the pair are ground as one piece on 
all four faces; in this case the fiat sides are first ground parallel to each 
other, or of equal thickness on the two edges, and the latter are then 
ground square by placing the sides in contact with the guide bar. 

When the lapis of moderate size, one guide bar only is employed, and 
it is fixed across the diameter of the plate, which then allows of two work- 
men being employed on the opposite sides; but large grinding plates some- 
times have two or three bars placed at equal distances across the face, and 
four or six workmen may then be employed at the same time upon separate 
pieces of marble. 

The sand and water are continually thrown from the lap by the centri- 
fugal force, and the large size of the works sometimes applied, prevents 
the use of a rim standing up above the level of the lap to catch the wet, 
as used by lapidaries. Every workman, therefore, stands within a kind 
of trough like a box, about three feet high, without a top or back; the 
troughs serve as a protection to the workmen, who would otherwise be 
exposed to a continued shower of sand and water. 

Marble Sawing and Polishing Machinery. 


The surfaces of large slabs are in some cases ground upon revolving 
plates; in this case the axis is placed entirely beneath the surface of the 
plate, somewhat as in fig. 9, and the slab is traversed by two men over 
the face of the plate to grind it equally; but the machine next described is 
better adapted for large slabs of marble requiring tolerable accuracy. 

Large slabs of marble and stone are ground very accurately in a ma- 
chine patented by Mr. Tulloch, and called a grinding bed. In this ma- 
chine, represented in fig. 9, the slab to be ground is placed horizontally 
upon a moving bed, and the grinding is effected by sand and water, by 
means of a large flat plate of iron resting upon the surface of the slab. The 
two surfaces ?re traversed over each other with a compound motion, partly 
eccentric and partly rectilinear, so as continually to change their relative- 
positions. The machine consists of a frame about 9 feet long, 6 feet wide, 
and 8 feet high; about 2 feet from the ground is mounted a platform, that 
is very slowly reciprocated horizontally for a distance of from 1 to 2 feet, 
according to the size of the slab, by means of a rack and pinion placed 
beneath, and worked alternately in both directions. 

Fig. 9. 

Above the platform are fixed vertically two revolving shafts, having at 
their upper extremities horizontal toothed wheels of equal diameter, which 
are driven by means of a central toothed wheel keyed on the driving shaft. 

Vol. XXL— Thiiid Slwks.— No. 4.— April, 1851. 22 

254 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

The two vertical shafts are thus made to revolve at equal velocity or turn 
for turn, and to their lower ends are attached two equal cranks placed 
parallel to each other, the extremities of which therefore describe equal 
circles in the same direction. To these cranks the iron grinding plate or 
runner is connected by pivots fitting two sockets placed upon the central 
line of the plate. The cranks are made with radial grooves, so that the 
pivots can be fixed by wedges at any distance from the centre of the cranks. 
When the machine is put in motion the grinding plate is thus swung round 
bodily in a horizontal circle of the same diameter as the throw of the cranks, 
which is usually about 12 inches, and consequently every portion of the 
surface of the grinding plate would describe a circle upon the surface of 
the slab being ground if the latter were stationary. But by the slow 
rectilinear movement of the platform the slab is continually shifted 
beneath the plate, so as to place the circles, or rather the cycloids, in a 
different position, and it is only after many revolutions of the cranks that 
the same points of the surfaces of the grinding plate and slab are a second 
time brought in contact. 

The grinding plate is raised for the admission of the slab by means of 
four chains suspended from a double lever, and attached to the arms of 
a cross secured to the centre of the upper surface of the plate, which is 
thus lifted almost like a scale pan. For slabs that are much thicker or 
thinner than usual, the principal adjustment is obtained by the removal or 
addition of separate beds, or loose boards, laid upon the platform to support 
the slab at the proper height. Slabs that are too large to be ground over 
the whole surface at the one operation, are shifted once or twice during 
the grinding, to expose the surface equally to the action of the grinding 

The necessary pressure for grinding, is given by the weight of the 
horizontal plate, which is supported almost entirely by the work, as the 
pivots of the cranks merely enter the sockets, and allow T the plate to 
descend when left to itself. For delicate works a counterpoise weight is 
attached to the double lever, so as to regulate the pressure on the work. 
The sand and water are applied to the grinding surfaces in much the 
same manner as in the iron runners used by hand, previously described. 
The grinding plate is made on the upper side with a raised rim like a 
tray, and the bottom of the tray is perforated with numerous holes about 
1-^ inch diameter arranged at equal distances apart. The sand and water 
are thrown into the tray at intervals in small quantities, and run through 
the holes and between the surfaces of the slab and grinding plate, which 
are thus uniformly supplied with the feed that ultimately makes its escape 
around the edges of the grinding plate. 

Various qualities of sand may be employed according to the perfection 
of surface required, and very flat surfaces are produced by this machine. 
The grounding or smoothing of the best works is effected with a succession 
of fine emeries, with which the surfaces may be made very smooth, and 
almost polished; but from motives of economy, the grounding of ordi- 
nary works is more frequently completed by hand, with grit stone and 
snake stone, before the work is finally polished on another machine. 
Rectilinear mouldings in marble are wrought by machinery in a manner 

On the Use of Caustic Lime in Blast Furnaces. 255 

altogether different from the hand process of working mouldings, in which, 
as previously described, nearly the whole of the material is removed with 
chipping chisels, and the surfaces of the mouldings are only smoothed by 
abrasion. In the machine process, on the contrary, the whole of the 
material is removed with revolving grinders, by which the work is reduced 
to the required form, and left smooth at the one operation. 

The machine for working rectilinear moulding, or as it is called the 
moulding bed, closely resembles in its construction the ripping bed de- 
scribed previously, except that the frame carrying the revolving grinders 
is provided with the power of vertical adjustment by a screw placed be- 
neath, in order to raise the grinder to the proper height to suit the thick- 
ness of the marble, and that instead of the grinders being thin circular 
sheets of iron, they consist of solid cylinders of cast iron turned to the 
counterpart forms of the required mouldings, indeed the ordinary ripping 
bed is occasionally used for working mouldings on large works, and when 
it is provided with the vertical adjustment for elevating or depressing the 
axis to any required position, the ripping bed is equally suitable for 
working mouldings; but as the latter are in general only required on slips 
of marble only a few inches wide, a narrow machine is usually employed 
for the purpose. 

On the Use of Caustic Lime, instead of Limestone, in Blast Furnaces; 
By E. Montefiore Levi, Engineer of the Ougree Blast Furnaces, and 
Da. Emil Schmidt, Engineer of the Royal Austrian Company. * 

Having, in 1849, undertaken a series of very extensive researches on 
the composition of the gases of the large coke furnaces used at Ougree, 
researches which we have been prevented by other occupations from bring- 
ing as yet to a sufficiently succtssful termination to offer them to public 
appreciation, but which have furnished several very interesting results, 
we took a portion of gas from foot to foot from the tuyere to the mouth 
of a furnace, 54 feet in height, each time estimating the proportion of 
carbonic acid; this examination, the details of which we reserve for an 
ulterior communication, demonstrated clearly that very nearly the whole 
of the carbonic acid disengaged from the limestone is converted into oxide 
of carbon in its passage through the incandescent coke. We observed 
that the decomposition of the limestone takes place much lower in the fur- 
nace than is generally supposed, and that at the point where that decom- 
position takes place, the temperature is sufficiently high to allow the carbon 
of the coke to be absorbed by the carbonic acid evolved from the car- 
bonate of lime. The quantity of coke thus uselessly consumed is very 
considerable, as the following calculation, deduced from the actual present 
working at Ougree, will plainly show: — 

A blast furnace, smelting 53 tons of 3S per cent, ore every 24 hours, 
will produce about 20 tons of iron — if, as at Ougree, 40 per cent, of lime- 
stone are used, the total quantity is about 21 tons, containing about 9h 
tons of carbonic acid; the coke consumed when limestone was used was 
about 150 for 100 of pig-iron, or about 30 tons per diem. Now, 9& tons 
•From the London Mining Journal, No. 802, 

256 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

of carbonic acid may be converted into oxide of carbon by the absorption 
of about 2 tons 12 cwts. of carbon, or 2 tons 18 cwts. of coke with 11 per 
cent, of ash, the proportion of coke, which is hereby uselessly absorbed, 
is equal to 9-74 per 100 of the total quantity which is charged into the 
blast furnace. Struck with this remarkable result, we acquired the con- 
viction that, notwithstanding the fuel and labor necessary for the manu- 
facture of lime in separate kilns, there would yet be a real and consider- 
able advantage gained by using it instead of limestone ; the fuel generally 
used for lime burning is of inferior quality, and as its combustion is so 
managed that it is converted in burning into carbonic acid, a maximum 
proportion of the heat that it can produce is rendered available; it ap- 
peared to us, moreover, evident that, the great absorption of heat by the 
carbonic acid in its passage from the solid to the gaseous state no longer 
taking place, not only could the quantity of ore charged for a given pro- 
portion of coke be augmented, but, moreover, as the elaboration of the 
ore would take place at a higher point of the furnace, the descent of the 
charges might be hastened, and the production of the furnace augmented. 

Consequently, carrying our ideas into practice, in the month of June, 
1849, lime was used in lieu of limestone in the furnace No. 3 of Ougree. 
The result during the few first days did not answer our expectations, but 
we were not long in discovering the cause of this unsuccessful result. No 
more than the theoretical proportion of lime had been used, that is to say, 
56 for 100 of the carbonate; but, necessarily, it was very far from being 
pure; there was, therefore, an insufficient quantity, and thence dark color- 
ed slags and difficult working. This fault was promptly remedied by an 
augmentation in the proportion of lime, which was carried to 63 for 100 
of limestone. From that moment, the behavior of the furnace became 
most regular and excellent; the proportion of ore was augmented, and 
the number of charges multiplied. From that period lime has constantly 
been used in that furnace, and invariably with the most favorable results. 
Eighteen months continual use of lime in this furnace, and six months in 
another (furnace No. 4 of Ougree,) during which period above 15,000 
tons of pig-iron have been manufactured by the use of quicklime, have 
proved in the clearest and most positive manner, not merely the aug- 
mentation in the daily production and the diminution in the quantity of 
coke used, which we did foresee, but also a remarkably ameliorating 
influence on the whole bearing of the furnace, of which we could have 
had no previous idea. 

Here are the proportions of coke used for the production of 100 of pig 
iron, during some months of 1849, according as quicklime or limestone 
was used : — 




150 1 










L56| 1 

September, . 



15l| | 

| November, . 







with limestone, 



Ditto with lime, 






On the Use of Caustic Lime in Blast Furnaces. 257 

It may thus be seen that the economy is 96 per cent, of the coke em- 
ployed — -figure which corresponds in a most striking manner with that of 
9*74, to winch we had already arrived by calculation. Rarely have we 
seen provisions founded on purely theoretical considerations so fully con- 
firmed by the practical results. 

At the commencement of 1850, two new furnaces were put in blast at 
Ougree, the existing kilns being insufficient to supply with lime more 
than one furnace, and the managers of the works, considering the expe- 
rience of the last six months as putting the advantage of the use of lime 
beyond a doubt, asked of the board of directors of the company the au- 
thority to erect new lime-kilns, so as to be enabled to supply with lime 
the three furnaces; but the directors were of opinion that the experiments 
already made, did not suffice to prove in general the advantage of the use 
of lime — the favorable result obtained might have been produced by an 
excellent state of the only blast furnace where the experiment had been 
tried, and that, perhaps, independently of the use of lime. For the pur- 
pose of deciding this question, quicklime was used instead of limestone 
in furnace No. 4, which had during several months been working in a 
regular manner, using limestone as a flux; the result was immediate, and 
very soon a similar diminution in the consumption of coke, augmentation 
in the daily production, and general good working were observed, as in 
furnace No. 3. 

The accompanying table shows the quantity of coke for 100 of iron, 
and the production during 28 days for six months of 1850 — first, for fur- 
nace No. 1, using limestone as a flux; second, for No. 3, using lime; and 
third, for No. 4, using limestone during three months, and lime daring 
three months. All the furnaces being built after precisely the same model, 
using the same ores, and producing white or mottled pig-iron by cold 

Coke for 100 Pic-Inox. Production hfhing 28 dais. 


No. 1. 

No. 3. 

No. 4. 

No. 1. 

No. 3. 

No. 4. 












Tons 436 












































\verage, April to June- 




ms 469 6 c. 

Ditto Ju 

Iy to Sept.— 




It appears, by this table, that the quantity of coke consumed is dimin- 
ished 14 to 15|- per 100 of iron, and the production in a given time is in- 
creased by 22 to 24 per cent. 

Although, as a flux, lime must necessarily come to a higher price than 
its carbonate, yet by its use is the cost of pig-iron very much diminished, 
and the profits are multiplied, on account of the increased production. 
We do not consider ourselves authorized to furnish here details of the 
cost price; but we can affirm, with confidence, that the increase of annual 
profit secured by this innovation is from 25,000 fr. to 30,000 fr. 

258 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry, 

Hitherto the opinion of metallurgists has been rather unfavorable than 
otherwise to the use of lime : Karsten, and after him other writers, estab- 
lishes the existence of this prejudice, without being able to assign for it 
a sufficiently plausible reason. M. Valerius [traitt de la fabrication de la 
fonte) says, "It is said that the use of lime causes the production of scoriae 
rich in iron, white cast iron, &c; and to explain this bad effect, it is re- 
marked that the calcination of the limestone in the blast furnace produces 
a very considerable diminution in the temperature, which prevents the 
ore from arriving too soon — that is, before the oxide of iron is reduced 
into a region of the furnace where the heat is sufficiently great to allow of 
the action of the oxide of iron upon the silica." Such a reason appears 
to us very ill founded; the sole effect of the lowering the temperature 
will be to allow the ores to arrive imperfectly reduced to a zone of fusion, 
just as we every day have the opportunity of observing when the ores are 
wet. The effect of the absorption of heat caused by this moisture is the 
production of black slags, white pig iron, &c, precisely the contrary of 
what it should be if M. Valerius's reasoning were exact; but common 
sense alone suffices to show that a constant cause of cooling in the furnace 
cannot possibly be advantageous. M. Ebelmen, in his interesting re- 
searches on the reduction of iron ore in blast furnaces, observed the con- 
siderable cooling effect of the carbonic acid, and the retardation which 
it causes in the reduction of the ores; yet he did not remark the conver- 
sion of the carbonic acid from the limestone into oxide of carbon. The 
following figures are taken from analyses made by M. Ebelmen, of a cal- 
careous ore which had remained for some time at different depths in the 
blast furnace: — 

Original ore. 
Carbonate of lime 36*8 

Quicklime, — 

Peroxide of iron, 36-2 

Protoxide of iron, — 

Metallic iron, — 

The height of the furnace was 27 feet; at 15 feet the carbonate of lime 
had scarcely undergone a commencement of decomposition. M. Ebelmen 
adds the following remarks — "It appears to me that the cause of the very 
sudden variation in the rapidity of reduction of the ores must be attri- 
buted to the disengagement of carbonic acid from the limestone. It may 
be remarked that, in the third experiment, the ore has lost a small portion 
of its carbonic acid, and in the fourth the whole of the lime is in the 
caustic state — thus the disengagement of the carbonic acid coincides in a 
striking manner with a sudden variation in the temperature of the furnace, 
and in the rapidity with which the ores are reduced. There is nothing 
surprising in this, asBischofl's experiments have proved that carbonic acid 
absorbs a large proportion of latent heat while passing from the solid to 
the gaseous state. The gases which pass through the furnace must, in 
traversing the zone where the calcination of the limestone takes place, 
lose a portion of their sensible heat, which becomes latent, while their 
reductive power is diminished, either on account of the lowered temper- 
ature, or because of the considerable admixture of carbonic acid. 

In conclusion, we are, as far as we are aware, the first who have suc- 
ceeded in substituting with success and economy lime for its carbonate 

At S feet. 

13 feet. 

15 feet. 

17 feet. 




— . 

















On the Use of Caustic Lime in Blast Furnaces. 259 

in blast furnaces. The Ougree Company, now fully convinced of the 
immense advantages derivable from the use of lime, is occupied with the 
construction of kilns heated by the blast furnace gases. 
Liege, December 21. 

On the Use of Caustic Lime, instead of Limestone, in Blast Furnaces. By 


In estimating the profits realized by the use of lime instead of limestone 
in blast furnaces, in our paper in the Mining Journal of the 4th Jan., we 
have stated that the actual increase of profits secured by this innovation 
is from 25,000 fr. to 30,000 fr. (1000/. to 1200/.) per annum. We omitted 
to add that this increase of profit was for one blast furnace only — that on 
the present working at Ougree being above 3000/. a year. Since our 
paper was written, lime has been employed in another large coke furnace, 
and immediately the daily production rose from 17^ to above 20 tons, the 
consumption of coke being very much diminished. We shall be happy 
to furnish any further information, if requisite, to such of your readers as 
may wish to apply this innovation; every one is at perfect liberty to do 
so — the use of lime in lieu of limestone not being a patented invention. 

Ougree, Jan. 12. 

On the Conduction of Heat in Blast Furnaces; by Francis C. Knowles.j 

Sir, — In your last number, I read an interesting article on the employ- 
ment of quicklime as a flux in blast furnaces. I have long advocated this 
useful "reform;" but the suggestion was called "theoretical," which, with 
Prof. Karsten's unsupported dictum, was considered as decisive; but the 
"theory" is now a matter of fact. This improvement has another prac- 
tical recommendation not noticed — namely, that the cementation of the 
ore in quicklime will take up its sulphur, if any, which limestone cannot 
do. The experiments of Prof. Playfairand Bunsen, X prove that the whole 
of the oxygen of the blast passes into carbonic oxide at or near the tuyeres. 
If this be fact, it follows incontestably that the whole of the heat in the 
higher regions of the furnace, is heat produced by conduction from below 
and from the heated gases in their passage, and not by combustion above. It 
is like the heat given out by one end of a bar of iron, while the other end 
is in the fire. This is a most important fact in our consideration of the 
working of blast furnaces. It points out to us that all causes tending to 
affect the uniformity of the temperature at any given point within the fur- 
nace — such as ore or -fuel containing moisture, ore containing carbonic 
acid, raw limestone, &c. — should be sedulously avoided. Even the use 
of raw coal may, in this point of view, be of doubtful utility. But there 
cannot be a doubt that the daily introduction of several tons of solid car- 
bonic acid, in masses scattered at irregular intervals through the furnace, 
must greatly derange the uniformity of its temperature, and, therefore, 
that of its working, while the gas is taking up its latent heat in passing 
into the seriform state. It may, at first sight, appear that the solid oxygen 

* From the London Mining Journal, No. 805. f Md. No. 804. 

\ Reports of British Association. Cambridge, 1836. 

260 Mechdnics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

of the ore should produce similar effects; but here a sort of compensation 
takes place (as appears from Profs. Playfair and Bunsen's report) through 
the combination of the carbon, or carbonic oxide, with this oxygen, which 
combination evolves heat enough to become the required latent heat of 
the resulting gas. This fact of conduction, assuming it to be established, 
will enable us to test the process of "tapping" the furnace (it matters not 
how,) in order to obtain its gases for fuel. These gases are driven up 
from below intensely heated; and they heat in their passage the whole 
mass of materials in the furnace up to its throat. If they be withdrawn 
from a point even a few feet below this, their heat is lost exactly when it 
is of most importance to obtain its full effect — viz., heating the fresh and 
cold charges, and driving off moisture, &c, from the ores and the fuel. 
This consideration would seem to be decisive; and, therefore, if we are 
to use the furnace gases, it should be after they have performed their func- 
tion and quitted the furnace. It remains to be seen whether this fact of 
conduction, if sufficiently established, will not lead to other important con- 
clusions as to the form of the interior of the furnace, the mode of charging 
it, &c. 

London, January 10. 

On the Use of Caustic Lime, instead of Limestone, in Blast Furnaces. By 

Evan Hopkins.* 

It is to be hoped that the old imperfect routine of some of our large 
manufactories, especially in the production of iron, will be gradually cor- 
rected by the diffusion of the chemical and mechanical principles on which 
the several operations are established. Some time ago you published a 
short abstract from one of my reports On the Furnaces and Mills of Prussia, 
and other Iron Districts on the Continent, which showed the simplicity and 
superiority of some of their works, as compared to many of ours, in addi- 
tion to the operators evincing superior intelligence in the practice and 
principles of making iron. 

The quality of the materials employed, the blast furnaces and mills, to- 
gether with the quality of the produce, were duly dwelt on in detail, and 
the mode adopted for preventing the splitting and bruising of the surface 
of the rails taking place, which is too often the case with many of our rails, 
for the want of such precaution in the piles. 

With respect to the present question, on the use of caustic lime, instead 
of limestone, in blast furnaces, it is evident that there is a considerable 
advantage in it. Firstly, it acts as a test on the quality of the flux. It 
ousht to be pure limestone; but it often happens thafthe nearest calcareous 
formation, or quarry, is impregnated with the silicate of calcium, mag- 
nesium, and other impurities. Consequently, when such limestone is 
thrown into the furnace in a raw state, a portion passes through unchanged, 
and comes out at the periods of cleaning the hearth, mixed with the slag 
or scoriae. This I have frequently witnessed in large furnaces. — Secondly, 
the previous calcination saves a large amount of fuel, and makes the latter 
more effective in the smelting process. — Lastly, it purifies the coke more 
perfectly. This may be easily proved by dipping impure coke into a 
• From the London Mining Journal, No. 806. 

New Combustible Substance Discovered in Russia. 261 

solution of lime, and employing it for smelting. The pyrites which may 
exist in the coke is decomposed into a sulphate of lime, and the iron com- 
bined with the carbon — in short, a much more perfect decomposition takes 
place amongst the materials. I am very glad to see the subject taken up, 
as it must tend to effect some good by introducing economy of materials, 
simpler arrangements, and a more perfect process in our iron manu- 

For the want of good early training in the general principles of our 
mines and smelting establishments amongst the operatives, England is 
suffering in the extraction and conversion of her internal resources, as well 
as in the available capital. There is almost an impassable gulf between 
the practical man who has been bred and reared in the mines, smelting- 
works, or work-shop, and the man of science who has been educated in 
the academy or university. The uneducated practical man, when once 
he has acquired a certain routine, is a valuable and indispensable instrument 
to the welfare of an establishment; and such men, under the guidance of 
prudent and intelligent men of science, lead to improvements and benefi- 
cial results. But should the person placed in charge be filled with doctrines 
founded on assumptions, and who never descended to the mechanical 
drudgery of experimental inquiry to acquire practical knowledge, and 
who may regard the mere practical man as a person beneath his notice, he 
cannot but soon bring ruin on an establishment. 

Again, we have another drawback, which, to my knowledge, has been 
the cause of ruin to some establishments carried on by Englishmen — viz.: 
the appointment of persons to take charge who may be very good account- 
ants, and plausible writers, but possessing little knowledge in the manage- 
ment of men, or of the work which may be placed under their superin- 
tendence. It is true that, in a well-regulated concern, a steady man of 
business is preferable to a loose irregular manager, if he exercises his judg- 
ment in the operations with discretion; but if, on the contrary, he becomes 
opinionated, keeps on the routine by elevating the ordinary practical men 
above their proper position, and encourages them in old contracted 
notions, in opposition to all improvements which do not emanate from 
himself, and working in the dark by the rule of thumb without plans or 
principles, it is clearly evident that the mere accident of natural favorable 
circumstances alone can render such proceedings permanently successful. 
These are of every day occurrence abroad, as well as in the United King- 
dom; and can only be removed by the diffusion of useful knowledge, and 
the elucidation of the general principles connected with our national in- 

Austinfriars, Jan. 28. 

Report on a New Combustible Substance, Discovered in Russia* 

A combustible substance, named Pungernite, by M. Bulgarine, has been 
found in. the Silurian formation, between Rana-Pungern and Gross- 
Pungern, on the road from Dorpatto Narva, in Esthonia, in the form of 
a yellowish brown laminated layer, speckled with white, very light, and 

• From the London Mining Journal, No. 801. 

262 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

about as hard as coal; it burns freely and brightly, giving off a great 
quantity of soot. According to M. Petzold, its constituents are : — 

Organic matter, 


Carbonate of lime, . 

. 17-0 


. 13-6 

Carbonate of magnesia, . 


Oxide of iron and alumina, 



1.2 = 99-3 

It yields much less carburetted hydrogen gas than coal does — the pro- 
portion being nearly 1 to 5; and the amount of heat derivable from it is 
also less than that obtained from coal, but rather greater than that yielded 
by charcoal. — Proc. Geol. Soc, Dec. 18. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 
Description of a Calculating Machine, Invented by J. W. Nystrom, Phila- 
delphia. [See patent, p. 241.) 

This Calculating Machine, (plate IV,) consists of a round plate of brass, 
or any other material, and two arms A and B, extending from the centre 
C, to the periphery. In the outer end of each arm is a screw e, for the 
purpose of fastening the arms in any particular place. On the plate are 
four figure circles a, b, c, and d, of which the outer one a, contains the 
numbers for multiplication and division. The large figures in the same 
circle a, represent the first figure, and the small figures the second; the 
third figure will be found on the arms, and the fourth between the figures 
on the arms. 

Example. To set the arm B, on 1449. — Then 1 being the first figure, set 
the arm B on the large 1 , on the circle a, move the arm B to the small figure 
4, which is the second figure; move B until the line 4 crosses the figure 
4 on the arm B, which is the third figure, and between 4 and 5 is the 
fourth figure, when the same line 4 crosses the ninth dividing. In that 
position of the arm, B is set on 1449. The number in circle b shows the 
decimal part of the logarithm (mantissa) for the number in circle a. 

Example. Log. 1449 = 3-1610. — The circle a shows the length of the 
sinus for an angle numbered in circle c, and also a shows the length of 
the cosinus for the angle numbered in the circle d. The numbers in circles 
c and d show the angle in degrees, and the figures on the arms between 
c and d shows the minutes. The numbers in circle b show the logarithms 
for all the trigonometrical lines on circle a. 

General Rule for Multiplication. 

Rule 1. Set the arm A on one of the factors, (circle a,) set the arm B on 
1, fasten the arms with the screw C, move the arms until the arm B comes 
to the second factor; the arm A will show the product. 

Example 1. Multiply 6 by 8, or 6 x 8. — Set the arm Aon 6, and B to 1, 
fasten the arms with the screw C, move the arms until B comes to 8; the 
arm A will show 48 the product. If more than two factors are to be mul- 
tiplied together, consider the product of the two factors as the first factor, 
and proceed with multiplication as before described. 

Example 2. 7 x 12 x 15. — Set the arm A on 7, B on 1, fasten the arms 
with the screw_C, move them until B comes to 12, fasten the arm A with 

Description of Nystromfs Calculating Machine. 263 

the screw e, loose the arm B and set it on 1, fasten the screw C, loose e, 
move the arms until B comes to 15; the arm A will show the product= 
1260. If there are any more factors, consider the last product as the first 
factor, and go on as before. 

General Rule for Division. 

Rule 2. Set the arm A on the dividend (circle a) and B on the divisor, 
fasten the arms with the screw C, and move them until B comes to 1; the 
arm A will show the quotient. 

Example 1. 36 divided by 12, or 36 : 12. — Set A on 36, B on 12, fasten 

the arms with C, move the arms until B comes to 1; then A will show the 

quotient. If any number is to be divided by more than one divisor, 

consider the quotient of the first divisor and dividend as a dividend, and 

divide by the second divisor. 

Example 2. — — — . — Set A on 3696, and B on 4, fasten C, move the 
1 4x 12 

arms until B comes to 1, fasten A% loose B with C, and put B on 12, fasten 

C, and move the arms until B comes to 1; then A will show the quotient 

= 77. If any dividend contains more than one factor, and also more 

than one divisor, multiply all the factors in the dividend after Rule 1, and 

divide with the divisors after Rule 2. 

General Rule for Proportion. 

Rule 3. Set A on the first term, B on the second, fasten A and B with 
C, move the arms until A comes to the third term; then B will show the 
fourth term. If the fourth term is known, set B to the fourth term; then 
A will show the third term. 

Example 1.3: 9=6 : 18. — Set A on 3, B on 9, fasten C, move the 
arms until A come to 6; then B will show the fourth term = 18. 

Example 2. If a car run 552 miles on a railroad in 24 hours, how far 
will it run in 13 hours? 

552 : 24= x : 13.— That is, set A on 552, and B on 24, fasten C, 
move the arms until B come to 13, the arm A will show the answer =299 

Example 3. If 248 men in 5 days of 11 hours a day each, can dig a 
trench of 230 yards long, 3 yards wide, and 2 yards deep, in how many 
days of 9 hours each, will 24 men dig a trench 420 yards long, 5 yards 
wide, and 3 yards deep? 

2 1 * 2 t = 23 3 * 42 5 « 248x5x11x420x5x3 
n " 9 2 3 24x9x230x3x2 

Set A on 248, B on 1, fasten C, move A and B, until B comes to 5, 
fasten A e , loose C, set B on 1, fasten C, move A and B until B comes to 
11, fasten A% loose C, set B on 1, fasten C, move A and B until B comes 
to 420, fasten A e , loose C, set B on 1, fasten C, move A and B until B 
comes to 5, fasten A% loose C, set B on 1, fasten C, loose A e , move A 
and B until B comes to 3, fasten A e , loose C, set B on 24, fasten C, loose 
A e , move A and B until B comes to 1, fasten A% loose C, set B on 9, 
loose A e , move A and B until B comes to 1, fasten A e , loose C, set B on 

264 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

230, fasten C, loose A% move A and B until B comes to 1, fasten A% 
loose C, set B on 3, fasten C, move A and B until B comes to 1, fasten 
A% loose C, set B on 2, fasten C, loose A% move A and B until B comes 
to 1; then A will show the answer = 288 T 3 ff days. 

This calculation is nothing more or less than an addition and subtrac- 
tion of the logarithm of the factors, though it is not necessary to notice the 
logarithm. But, when the number of figures in the result is uncertain, a 
correct account must be kept of the indices of the factors. For that 
purpose there is a small hand on the top of the screw C, which is to be 
moved by hand for each operation; for multiplication add the indices, and 
for each time the arm A moves over 1, add one to the index, (because 
the sum of the mantissa? of the factors is more than 1.) For division, sub- 
tract the index for the divisor from the index for the dividend; and for 
each time the arm A moves over 1, subtract one from the index, (because 
the difference between the divisor and dividends mantissse is less than 
one.) If the index is negative, the result must be a corresponding decimal 

Example 4. "What is the power of a steam engine, (condenser) ? 
Two cylinders, diameter of each, 42 inches, 

Stroke of piston, 27 " 

Pressure in the boiler per square inch, 30 lbs., 

Cut off 7j of the stroke, the mean pressure will be 

per square inch, 20 " 

Vacuum per square inch, 10 " 

Making turns per minute, 79 

Coefficient for all the frictions and pumps, =0*3333 

42* x 0-785 x 30 x 4x2-25x79x0-666 cnri 
Horse power= 3^ =600. 

To Pv-educe a Vulgar Fraction to a Decimal, or to another Vulgar 


Rule 4. Set the arm A on the numerator, and B on the denominator, 
fasten the arms with C, and move A and B until B comes to 1; then A 
will show the decimal. 

Example 1. Reduce f to a decimal fraction. — Set A on 3, B on 4, fasten 
C move the arms until B comes to 1; then A will show the decimal frac- 
tion, = 0-75. 

Example 2. Reduce -J | to decimals. — Set A on 13, and B on 19, fasten 
C, move the arms until B comes to 1; then A shows the decimal fraction, 
= 0-6S42. 

Example 3. Reduce § to 70ths. — Set the arm A on 2, B on 5, fasten 
C, move the arms until B comes to 70; then A shows 28, that is, §§. If 
the arms be moved into any position, the numbers within the arms will 
always be in proportion of 2 : 5. 

Example 4. Multiply 24 by \ %. — Set the arm A on 24, B on 32, fasten 
C, move the arms until B comes to 19; then A shows the result,= 14-25. 
Subtracting roots on this calculating machine is precisely the same as sub- 
tracting roots by logarithms, and requires the same accuracy in the di- 
viding the indices and mantissse, for the number of which the root is to 
be subtracted. 

Description of Ny stromas Calculating Machine. 265 

Rule for Subtracting Roots. 

Rule 5. Divide the logarithm of the number (of which the root is to be 
subtracted) by the index of the root, the corresponding number on the 
circle a is the root. That is to say, the index is kept with the small hand, 
the mantissa on th e circ le b, and the numbers on circle a. 

Example 1. ^3694 = 60-78.— Set the arm A on 3694, fasten A% the 
index kept with the hand=3, mantissa on circle b is 0-565, that is loe. 

= 3-565, — — = 1-7837. Set the arm B on 7837 on circle b, the corres- 
ponding number on circle a is the root= 60-78. 

* 26853^ = +*" - 1-4796 - log. 3017 
o o 

^-2369000?-^! = ^^ = 1-2549 - log. 17-99 
yj 39249000. 2^- = 7 ' 5 ^ 37 = 0-84373 = log. 6-978 

To Find the Mean Proportional of Two Numbers. 
Example. What is the mean proportional of 4 and 9? 4 : x=x : 9 
£= \/4x 9 = 6. — Set A on 4, B on 1, fasten C, move the arms until B 
comes to 9, fasten A", loose C. Mantissa on the arm A = 0-5568, index 
= 1, log. = 1-5568. Set the arm B on mantissa 0-5568 on circle b, the 
corresponding number on circle a is the mean proportional = 6. 

Trigonometrical Calculations. 

The trigonometrical calculations are to be computed on the circles c 
and d, (see page 262.) 

Example 1. What is the angle with the horizontal, of an inclined plane 
24 feet in length and 8 feet in height? Sin. A= A, then A=19° 28'. 

Set the arm A on 8, B on 24, fasten C, move the arms until B comes to 1; 
then the angle A=19° 28' shows on circle c. 

Example 2. How long must an inclined plane be to form an angle with 

the horizontal 38° 49' and 16 feet in height? Len£th=- ^ = 

° 5 sin. 38° 49 

25-55 feet; set the arm A on 16, B on sin. 38° 49 / , fasten C, move the 
arms until B comes to 1; then A shows the height ■» 25 T 5 D 5 5 feet. 

Example 3. W T hat is the height of a church steeple, when a distance of 
53£ yards is measured from its centre horizontally to an angle of 57° 29' 

to the top ? Heights 53.V X 3 x tang. 57° 29'=53i x 3 x Sm " 57° 29>. 


Set A on 53-5, B on 1, fasten C, move the arms until B comes to 3, 

fasten A e , loose C, set B on cos. 57° 29 / , fasten C, loose A% move the 

arms until B comes to sin. 57° 29'; then the arm A shows the height= 

252 feet. 

To Find the Tangent for an Angle A. 
Rule. Set A on sin. A, and B on cos. A, fasten C, move the arms until 

Vox.. XXI. — Third Ssiubs. — No. 4. — Aran, 1851. 23 

266 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

B comes to 1; then A shows the length of the tangent on circle a. 
Examvle. Tang. 55° 35'=-^-55° 35'=l-4635.— Set Aon sin. 55° 


35', and B on cos. 55° 35', fasten C, and move the arms until B comes to 
1; then A shows the length of the tangent =1*463 on circle a. 

To Find the Cotangent. 

Example. Cotangent=-^-. cotang. 55° 35' = -^55° 35' = 0-6S5. 

Set A on cos. 55° 35', B on sin. 55° 35', fasten C, move the arms until 
B comes to 1; then A shows the length of the cotangent = 0-685 on 
circle a. 

To Find the Secant. 

Example. Secant = = rrn or , . — Set A on 1, B on cos. 55° 

r cos. cos. 55° 35' 

35', fasten C, move the arms until B comes to 1; then A shows the length 

of the secant on circle a= 1-7725. 

To Find the Cosecant. 

Example 1. Cosecant= — — = — — rrC . __. . — Set A on 1, B on sin. 55 G 
r sin. sin. 55° 35' 

35', fasten C, move the arms until B comes to 1; then A shows the length 

of the cosecant= 1-212. 

Example 2. In a triangle are measured one side a=92 feet, an angle A 

= 31° 16', angle B=61° 3'. How long is the side 6? 

92xsin. 61° 3' , 6b 
= lo5. 

sin. 31° 16' 

Set A on 92, B on sin. 31° 16', fasten C, move the arms until B comes 
to sin. 61° 3'; then A shows the side b= 155 feet on circle a. 

Example 3. To find the angle A, sin. A= 92X ^ 61 3 ' =31° 16'. 

Set A on 92, B on 155, fasten C, move the arms until B comes to sin. 
61° 3'; then A shows v 31° 16. 

Example 4. What is the pitch of a propeller 11 feet 6 inches in diame- 
ter, the angle of the blades at the extremity being 53° 35' ? Pitch = 
3-14 x 11-5 x cotang. 53° 35'= 26-7 feet.— Set Aon 3-14, Bon 1, fasten 
C, move the arms until B comes to 11-5, fasten A e , loose C, set B on sin. 
53° 35', fasten C, move the arms until B comes to cos. 53° 35'; then A 
shows the pitch = 26-7 feet. 

Example 5. What is the declination of the earth on the 14th of May, 

that is, 38 days from the 21st of June? Cos. (-S?-- 38 ) x 23° 27', that is, 

cos. 37° 3(yx 23-45= 18-55=18° 33'.— Set A on 360, B on 365, fasten 
C, move the arms until B comes to 38, then A shows 37-5°. Set A on 
23-45, B on 1, fasten C, move the arms until B comes to cos. 37° 30: 
then A shows 18-55=18° 33' the answer. 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 267 

The following example will show that the most complicated questions 
can be worked on this instrument in a few minutes: 

5 |36-97 vV (98-5-12) 2 .63x//o6 

\j~ — ; = 2-095. 

v 97-6 (39-95— lbf^927-6 3 

This specification is deemed amply sufficient to give an idea of what 
can be done with this simple instrument. 

It is intended soon to publish a book to accompany the Calculating 
Machine, containing numerous examples and directions that will enable 
persons to use the same. 

A machine for general business calculation, will be about 9 inches in 
diameter. Those for astronomical and the more particular branches, will 
be about 2 feet in diameter, and the engraving of course will vary. An- 
other for approximate calculations, intended to put in pocket-books, will 
be about 3 inches in diameter, and printed on paper; also, the arms A 
and B made of paper. 

Philadelphia , February 7, 1851. 

For the Journal of the Franklin Institute. 

A Series of Lectures on the Telegraph, delivered before tlie Franklin Institute. 

By Dr. L. Turnbull. 1850-51. 

Continued from page 196. 

Before considering the individual galvanic telegraphs, it will be proper 
to state the most important phenomena and laws of galvanism; also, the 
principal forms of voltaic apparatus. 

The first instrument of importance, was the voltaic pile of Professor 
Volta, of Pavia, a description of w T hich is published in the Philosophical 
Transactions of 1800; although the discovery of galvanism is due to Gal- 
vani, Professor of Anatomy at Bologna, who found that by forming a 
chain of conducting substances, between the outside of the muscles of 
the leg and the crural nerve of a frog, convulsions might be produced. 
Galvani previously entertained the idea, that the contractions of the mus- 
cles of animals were dependent on electricity. 

The invention of the pile by Volta, was the result of profound thought 
on the development of electricity at the surface of contact of different 

The galvanic pile of Volta consisted of an equal number of silver coins 
and pieces of zinc of the same form, with circular disks of card soaked 
in salt water; of these he formed a pile or column by placing them alter- 
nately. If the uppermost disk of metal, either copper or silver, be touched 
with the finger, previously wetted, while a finger of the other hand is ap- 
plied to the lowest disk, a distinct shock is felt, which is increased with 
the number of plates. Instead of the moist conductor, we now use 
liquids of various kinds, and electricians have devised various forms of 
batteries, but all based on the important principle discovered by Volta. 

"By the voltaic pile, I mean such apparatus, or arrangement of metals, 

268 MecJianics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

as contain water, brine, acid, or other aqueous solutions or decomposable 
substances between their plates; decomposition is an essential chemical 
part of every voltaic battery." — (Faraday's Researches.) 

It was Volta who removed our doubtful knowledge. "Such knowledge 
is the early morning light of every advancing science, and is essential to 
its development; but the man who is engaged in dispelling that which is 
deceptive in it, and revealing more clearly that which is true, is as useful 
in his place, and as necessary to the general progress of science, as he 
who first broke through the intellectual darkness, and opened a path into 
knowledge before unknown." — (Ibid.) 

According to Professor Faraday, the supply of electricity is due to che- 
mical power in the voltaic pile, metallic contact not being necessary for 
the production of the voltaic current; and further, that electricity is only 
another mode of the exertion of pure unmixed chemical forces. It is pro- 
portional in its intensities to the intensities of the affinities concerned in 
its production, and its quantity to the quantity of matter which has been 
chemically active during its evolution. It is the union of oxygen of the 
water which determines the current; and though the acid is essential to 
the removal of the oxide so formed, in order that another portion of zinc 
may act on another portion of water, it does not by combination with that 
oxide produce any sensible portion of the circulating electrical current; 
for the quantity of electricity is dependent on the quantity of zinc oxidized, 
and is scarcely, if at all, affected by the use of either strong or weak acid. 
Galvanic differs from friction al electricity in its low degree of intensity, 
the larger amount set in motion, the greater constancy, more perpetual 
reproduction, less tendency to escape, and better conduction along me- 
tallic substances without being dissipated. The unequal character of all 
the batteries previous to the one introduced by the late Prof. Daniell, of 
King's College, London, was a serious obstacle to telegraphic opera- 
tions; they are familiar to most persons who have taken any interest in this 
important matter, and I will therefore omit them. 

Prof. Daniell was the first to invent a battery capable of constant and 
steady action, and thus overcame the defects of those previously in use. 
The defects which cause the electromotive action to subside rapidly, and 
soon to cease altogether, are: 1st, The sulphuric acid becomes saturated 
with the oxide of zinc. 2d, The hydrogen adheres to the surface of the 
metals, and thus prevents their perfect contact with the water. 3d, By 
the chemical action of the battery, the zinc, contained in the sulphate of 
zinc which is formed, is reduced to the metallic state at the surface of the 
copper, and deposited upon it in the form of a crust, where it acts locally 
and impairs the conducting power. 4th, Electricity is carried off and dis- 
sipated by the escaping hydrogen. 5th, Impurities on the surface of the 
zinc form small circuits, by which the electricity is conducted back into 
it, without going through the fluid to the copper, and then returning by 
metallic connexion. 

The adhesion of hydrogen to the zinc plate, does not take place when 
that metal is pure or amalgamated with mercury. Prof. Daniell, therefore, 
employs a cylindrical rod of zinc, amalgamated wuth mercury, instead of 
a plate of the common and impure metal. The amalgamation has also 
the effect of preventing the small local electric circuits, by covering up the 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 269 

impurities which exist on its surface. This was first introduced by Stur- 
geon. But the peculiar and most vauable feature of this battery is the 
use of a porous partition, which may be formed of animal membrane, 
earthenware, plaster of Paris, paper, or any similar substance. This 
divides the vessels containing the metals into two cells, one of which, 
the zinc cell, is filled with dilute sulphuric acid, in proportion of ten 
the parts water to one of acid, and the other with an acid solution of 
sulphate of copper. The partition freely transmits the electrical current, 
but prevents the passage of the sulphate of zinc to the copper plate, 
and thus remedies the third of the above mentioned defects. The sul- 
phate of copper is decomposed into sulphuric acid and protoxide of copper. 
The sulphuric acid passes through the partition into the zinc cell, there 
to act upon the oxide of zinc, while the oxide of copper is again decom- 
posed into oxygen and metallic copper. The oxygen unites with the 
nascent hydrogen formed in the oxidation of the zinc to form water, and 
the metallic copper is deposited on the copper plate, keeping the plate 
constantly bright, and thus making it a better conductor. The hydrogen 
being consumed in the formation of water, it cannot interfere with the 
action of the conducting plate, nor convey away electricity. A little frame 
is fitted to the top of the cell, in which crystals of sulphate of copper 
are placed, in order that the strength of the solution may remain unim- 

Another form of battery,, proposed by Prof. Grove, of London, is an 
improvement upon Prof. Daniell's, in respect to amount of force gene- 
rated in a small space, and has been adopted in most of the telegraphic 
offices of this country. A platinum plate is substituted for the copper 
one of Prof. Daniell, and instead of sulphate of copper, strong nitric 
acid is usecl r which furnishes oxygen to unite with the hydrogen. The 
oxygen in nitric acid is held by very slight affinity, and many chemical 
substances reduce the nitric acid to hypo-nitrous and nitrous acid, which 
contains two or three equivalents less. The increase of power in 
Grove's battery over Daniell's battery, for the same amount of zinc dis- 
solved, is equal to the difference of affinity between oxygen for nitrous acid 
and oxygen for zinc. The force of Grove's battery is, therefore, equal to 
the affinity of oxygen for zinc, minus the affinity of oxygen for nitrous acid. 
The energyof a galvanic arrangement depends to some extent upon the dif- 
ference in the affinity for oxygen of the metals employed, which in the case 
of platinum and zinc, is at a maximum, zinc being most readily oxydized, 
and platinum least so. The zinc plate, as in Daniell's, is amalgamated 
and surrounded by sulphuric acid, diluted with eight parts of water, 
while the nitric acid i-3 placed in the platinum cell. A Grove battery 
exposing a surface of zinc equal to twenty square inches, was found by 
its magnetizing power, to afford a current of greater quantity than a Dan- 
iell battery exposing 210 inches of zinc. The intensity of the current 
is also considered three times as great as Daniell's, and is remarkable for 
its constancy. The escape of nitrous acid, red fumes from this battery, 
render it disagreeable and unsafe to a careless experimenter. They are 
irrespirable, and injurious to nice apparatus which may be exposed to them. 
By placing a metallic covering (protected from the acid fumes-} over the 
battery, and allowing the gases to- escape through an orifice stuffed with 

270 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

cotton, wet with a little alcohol, these maybe to some extent neutralized. 
The intensity of the current depends on the chemical affinities which are 
concerned, and on this account there is a gain in Grove's battery over 
Daniell's. Prof. Callan, ofMaynooth College, Ireland, has invented a 
galvanic battery, cheap in its construction and use, yet powerful. He sub- 
stitutes cast iron for the outer copper cell, and a flat piece of zinc for the 
inner one, with equal parts of nitric and sulphuric acids for the outer 
cell, and a mixture of two parts of nitric acid, five of sulphuric acid, and 
forty-five of water for the inner one. 

The effects of the galvanic current on the nerves and muscles of animals, 
are essentially the same as those produced by frictional electricity, modi- 
fied, however, in some degree, by the continuous action of it. They are 
also characterized by the presence of some chemical influence, which 
excites the organs of taste and sight in a remarkable manner. Very small 
batteries are adequate to excite the organs of taste and sight, but a large 
apparatus is needed to produce any perceptible influence on the sense of 
touch, so as to cause the muscles of the human body to contract, when 
it forms part of the circuit. Galvani, in his fundamental experiment, 
touched the nerves of a dead frog's spine and the muscles of one of his 
thighs with two different metals, and then forming a circuit by a wire be- 
tween them, the leg became violently contracted. When the nerves of 
vision are made to form part of the voltaic connexion, peculiar luminous 
flashes will appear before the eyes. The excitement of the organ of 
hearing: under similar circumstances is not less interesting, a roaring; sound 
being heard as long as the wires are kept in place. On closely observing 
the effect of galvanic electricity upon the muscular and nervous system, 
three distinct stages in the process are readily seen. First, when the cir- 
cuit is completed, an electric shock is experienced; next, the continued 
action of the current causes a series of contractions rapidly succeeding 
each other; and lastly, when the connexion is broken, a less violent shock 
than before is felt. The shock of a voltaic battery differs from common 
electricity, as the latter is felt far less deeply, affecting only the outer part 
of our organs, and being exhausted in a moment. The voltaic shock, on 
the contrary, penetrates farther into the system, passing along the entire 
course of the nerves. The influence of the galvanic current on the 
nervous system, has been successfully applied to the restoration of persons 
in whom animation was suspended. By means of it, Aldini set in motion 
the feet of a corpse, caused the eyes to open and shut, and distorted the 
mouth, cheeks, and the whole of the countenance. Ure, by completing 
the circuit through the body of a man recently hung, caused the muscles 
of the face to acquire a frightful activity, so that rage, despair, and an- 
guish, with horrid smiles, were successively depicted on the countenance. 
— (PeschelPs Elements of Physics.) 

The chemical effects of galvanism are perhaps the most important of 
all that come under our observation. Prof. Faraday's investigations 
have recently added most materially to our knowledge on this subject, 
and it is to him that we are indebted for detecting most of its laws. To 
produce these effects, the electrical current must be conducted completely 
through the substance which is to be decomposed; as soon as the cir- 
cuit is completed, the elements are set in operation, and so continue 
until the connexion is broken. The bodies to be resolved must be con- 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 271 

ductors of electricity, and also be in a liquid condition, that their particles 
may move freely among each other. The circuit may be completed 
through the fluid, by dipping into it the metallic wires which connect with 
the poles of the battery. These extremities of the wire are commonly 
termed poles, from an idea that they exert attractive and repulsive ener- 
gies towards the elements of the decomposing liquid, just as the poles of 
a magnet act towards iron; and each is farther distinguished by the term 
positive, and negative, according as it affects an electrometer with positive 
or negative electricity. Now Prof. Faraday contends, and has proved 
by experiment, that these poles have not any attractive or repulsive energy, 
and act simply as a path, or door, to the current; he hence calls them 
electrodes, from electron, t\ixtpo v , electricity, and odos, o&os, a way. The 
electrodes are the surfaces, whether of air, water, metal, or any other 
substance, which serve to convey an electric current into 3nd from the 
liquid to be decomposed. The surfaces of this liquid which are in im- 
mediate contact with the electrodes, and where the elements make their 
appearance, are termed anode, and cathode, from ana, wa, upwards, and 
odos, o&oa, the way in which the sun rise>, and kata, xara, downwards, the 
way in which the sun sets. The anode is where the positive current is 
supposed to enter, and the cathode where it quits, the decomposing 
liquid; its direction, when the electrodes are placed east and west, cor- 
responding with that of the positive current, which is thought to circulate 
on the surface of the earth. To electrolyze a compound is to decompose 
it by the direct action of galvanism, its name being formed from electron, 
lUxrpov, and luo f ivo, to unloose or set free. An electrolyte is a compound 
which may be electrolyzed. The elements of an electrolyte are called 
ions from ion, tor, going, neuter participle of the verb to go. Anions, are 
the ions, which appear at the anode, and are usually termed the electro- 
negative ingredients of a compound, such as oxygen, chlorine, and acids; 
while the electro-positive substances, as hydrogen, metals, alkalies, &c. 
which appear at the cathode, are cations. Whatever may be thought of 
the necessity of some of these terms, the words electrode, electrolyze, 
and electrolyte, are peculiarly appropriate. — (Faraday's Experimental 

Water, the first agent decomposed in this way, was electrolyzed by 
Messrs. Nicholson and Carlisle, soon after the discovery of the voltaic 
pile. From its low conducting power, water requires a powerful current 
for its decomposition, unless it be slightly acidulated. In 1803, Berze- 
lius and Hisinger ascertained the power of the galvanic battery to resolve 
many other substances into their elements; that these elements observed 
regular laws in their resolution into more simple form, as oxygen and acids 
accumulated about the positive pole; while hydrogen, alkaline earths, and 
metals appeared at the negative one. Sir H. Davy communicated to the 
Royal Society, his celebrated Lecture on some chemical agencies of 
Electricity in 1806; and in 1807, he announced the grand discovery of the 
decomposition of the fixed alkalies. Faraday's masterly productions on 
this subject were elicited in the period from 1831 to 1840, some of which 
important results have been mentioned. 

It is an interesting matter to obtain a fixed ride or law, by which we 
can estimate the amount of projectile force needed by a galvanic current 

272 Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

to pass over a certain length of telegraphic wire; though all such rules 
must be more or less inconclusive, from the number of contingent circum- 
stances on which they depend; still, from experiment and observation, we 
can obtain those which may be useful in making what are termed rough 
calculations. To make such a computation, we must on one hand find 
all the sources which give motive power, and on the other seek those 
agencies which offer resistance to that power, obtain the sum of each, and 
then institute a comparison. The power is that electricity of intensity 
which a single galvanic cell is capable of generating. This multiplied 
by the number of cells gives us the whole amount of electrical power. 
The resistance is that obstruction the electricity meets in the conducting 
metal and the liquid of the cells. Find the amount of obstruction in a 
single cell; this multiplied by the number of cells affords the total sum of 
a battery. Then divide the whole sum of power by the total amount of 
resistance in the conducting wire and liquid of the battery cells, and the 
quotient will be the effective power of the battery. 

The electromotive force of an electric current may be ascertained by the 
following important law of Ohm, being applicable under all circumstances, 
referring to all the causes which tend to impede the action of the battery. 
"It is, that the intensity of an electric current where a battery is in action, 
is directly as the whole electromotive force in operation, and inversely as 
the sum of all the impediments to conduction. It may therefore be ex- 
pressed by a fraction whose numerator is the electromotive force, and its 
denominator the sum of the resistance of all its parts. Let I be the in- 
tensity of the current; E the effective electromotive force in the battery; 
R its constant retarding influence, and r the variable retarding influence in 
the connecting wires; then 

R + r 

If, according to Ohm's formula, we put the intensity of the current in a 
simple voltaic arrangement whose excited surface is I, 

Then the intensity of a current from a battery of n pairs of plates or cups 
will be, 

2. r=4^-, 

n R + r 

and in a single voltaic arrangement whose surface is n times greater than 
I, the resistance to conduction being diminished inversely as the area of 
its transverse section, the intensity becomes 

3 I"=-^_= n * " 

R\-r R + nr 

The resistance to an electric current in a conducting wire rs in propor- 
tion to the length of the wire, and inversely as its sectional area. That is, 
the longer the wire the greater the resisiance, and the larger the wire the 
less the resistance. If the wire be many miles long, the resistance to the 

Lectures on the Telegraph. 273 

electrical current varies arithmetically as the wire increases in length 
geometrically. Arithmetical progression is constant addition, while geo- 
metrical progression is constant multiplication, and the ratio would stand 

Resistance, 1:3:5:7:9:11 : 13 : 15, &c. 
Length, 1 : 2 : 4 : 8 : 16 : 32 : 64 : 128, &c. 

The resistance of the liquid in the cells is in direct proportion to the 
amount and thickness of that fluid, and in the inverse proportion to its 
conduciibility. Or the greater the thickness of the fluid, the more re- 
sistance it will oppose to the galvanic current; while, on the other hand, the 
greater the conducting power of the fluid, the less obstruction is presented. 

Thus it will be seen that the data for such an estimate are numerous, 
and require much scrutinizing experiment to afford a system for practical 

Professors Wheatstone, of London, Steinheil, of Munich, and Jacobi, 
of St. Petersburgh, appear to have been foremost among tho^e who have 
endeavored to ascertain the velocity of the electrical current. Its rapi- 
dity previous to their labors was supposed incalculable; si nple observa- 
tion had impressed experimenters with the opinion that it was instanta- 
neous; but, like the other imponderable agents, it has not on'y been shown 
to be progressive, but also, under peculiar circumstances, of much less 
celerity than light. It is greatly modified by the incidents co inected with 
different trials. Not only the kind of electricity employed, but the nature 
and size of the conductor, temperature and electrical tension of the at- 
mosphere, dissimilar means and instruments used by different operators for 
arriving at results, may perhaps account for the very discordant opinions 
of practical physicists on this topic. Prof. Wheatstone, making a cur- 
rent of frictional electricity pass along copper wire, and noting the in- 
tervals of reflected sparks from a revolving mirror, estimated the speed at 
228,000 miles in a second. Our ingenious and distinguished townsman, 
Mr. Saxton, devised the instrument with which Prof. W. determined these 
facts. Some truly practical and indefatigable trials have been recently 
made under the direction of Prof. S. C. Walker, of the United States Coast 
Survey, which, like the rest, present a heterogeneous mass of probable 
velocity; taking the whole of thern, he deduces the "resultant as 15,890 
miles per second, as the most probable value." — {Sillimarts Journal, 
March, 1851.) — He used galvanic electricity, and conductors of wire 
known in trade as No. 9. 

Professor Mitchell, of the Cincinnati Observatory, experimented wit 1 * 
a sidereal clock on the common telegraphic line, and inferred the velo- 
city at 30,000 miles per second. And again, Messrs. Fizeau and Gounelle, 
in a paper published in the Comptes Rendus of April last, make their result 
as 111,886 miles per second in copper wire, and 62,159 in iron. — [Jour. 
Frank. Ins., Vol. xx. p. 62.) 

Here are very many discrepancies, that may be perhaps ascribed to the 
variable contingencies attending the experiments. Matteucci, Baumgart- 
ner, Kirchoff, Ridolphi, and Smauren, are and have been prominent in- 
vestigators of this subject. 

Many trials were made at an early period, on the transmission of gal- 
vanism through water and soil. In 1803, experiments were made by F. 


Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. 

H. Basse on the Weser, a distance of 4000 feet being included in the 
circuit, ( Gilbert's Annalen, xiv. p. 26,) by Erman in the Havel, near Pots- 
dam, (Gilbert, xiv.p. 385,) and by Aldini at Calais, across about 200 feet 
of sea water. 

Prof. Steinheil, in 1837, first employed the earth as a return portion of 
the circuit between telegraphic stations, and nearly all the telegraph lines 
are now arranged on this principle. Much speculation has arisen, as to 
the mode in which the electrical impulse is conveyed through the earth 
between the termini: though it is as much under our control as when 
transmitted through wire conductors, it is difficult to conceive the passage 
of the fluid in these cases as similar. In all our experiments we find the 
earth a vast receptacle and source of electricity, and from this fact modern 
physicists suppose no impulse communicated, but that electricity given 
to the earth at one end of the line increases the whole amount in it, and the 
equilibrium is restored by the escape of the redundant fluid into the other 
extremity of the wire. Baumgartner inferred from experiment, that the 
geological structure of the intervening earth had some effect upon the time 
required for the appearance of the electrical impulse at the termini; this, if 
correct, is strong evidence in favor of conduction of electricity by the 

To be Continued. 

Description of an Improved Annular Steam Boiler, Patented by Thomas 
Champion, of Philadelphia, Pa., Feb. \8th, 1851. (See page 233.)* 

Fig. 1 is an end view, with the outside plate removed to show the ends 
of the annular cylinders. Fig. 2 is a longitudinal section. The same 
letters refer to like parts. 

a a represent the fire box, and the arrows in the spaces marked a, shows 
a large fire space nearly surrounding the annular cylinders. The heated air 
* Communicated by the Inventor. 

Adjourned Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 275 

and products of combustion are made to return as shown by the arrows at 
the back and through the spaces between the cylinders, cccc, and pass up 
the smoke pipe, thus presenting a large heating surface with return spaces, 
it may be said to get all the benefit of the fuel. There are a number of large 
evaporation openings communicating with all the cylinders, but d is the 
upper opening above the annular cylinders, to allow the free using of the 
steam into the steam chamber, b, above. The openings spoken of will 
be observed more particularly in fig. 1, as extending around the cylinders, 
uniting them together, and answering the four-fold purpose of braces 
securing the cylinders firmly together, allowing the free ebullition of the 
water, and passage of the steam upwards into the steam chamber, 6, and 
also the settling of dirt and impurities to the bottom part, where they may 
be blown out by a blow pipe, to keep the boiler free from incrustations. 
They also expose more fire surface, and thereby tend to more rapid eva- 


Proceedings of an Adjourned Meeting, held February 25, 1851. 

Algernon S. Roberts, Esq., in the chair. 

Isaac B. Garrigues, Recording Secretary. 

Mr. G. W. Smith stated that this meeting was held for the purpose of 
discussing the relative merits of the paddle-wheel and the screw, as instru- 
ments for the propulsion of steamers. This evening had been appointed 
with the expectation that some naval engineers, who were present at the 
last meeting, would also be present at this, and give ihe opinions they had 
formed on this subject, after much practical experience in steamers in 
actual service. They had, however, been compelled to leave the city. 
The subject of propellers was comparatively new in this country; such ves- 
sels would of course be most proper for canals and narrow streams. Most 
engineers considered side-wheels the best, but auxiliary screw steamships 
had increased very much of late. Some had thought the propeller tended to 
push the vessel into the water under heavy seas, but it would operate 
as well in that as in smooth seas, while the side- wheel would lift the vessel 
out, but lost power or speed when the wheels were thrown out of the 
water by the rolling of the vessel. He would express no opinions on the 
subject, but would like to hear those of gentlemen present, who were 
interested in the matter. 

Mr. J. H. Towne said that two systems of propelling steam- vessels were 
prominently before the public at this time, viz. : by paddle-wheels and 
by screw propellers. The side or paddle-wheel had been in use for a 
long time, and the most skilful engineers of the world had employed 
their time and talents for the last thirty or forty years in bringing this 
system to perfection. The screw, on the other hand, had only recently 
been introduced into practical operation, and comparatively few me- 
chanical engineers had yet given much attention to it. Most of them 

276 Franklin Institute. 

are to this day much prejudiced against this system, and think it will 
only answer for freighting vessels of slow speed. He (Mr. T.) was of a 
different opinion ; he had taken great pains to obtain information on the 
subject, and he had had an opportunity of witnessing the performance of 
the best screw-steamer which had yet been made in this, and perhaps in 
any country; he alluded, of course, to the Princeton. A careful exami- 
nation of the whole subject had led him to the belief that the screw, as 
an instrument for propelling sea steamers, is better and more efficient 
than the paddle-wheel — all circumstances considered ; and he had no 
doubt that, for sea-going vessels, it would sooner or later supersede the 
paddle-wheel. The screw has many advantages over the paddle-wheel ; 
it is not affected by the depth of immersion or by the rolling of the vessel, 
but is equally effective at all depths, and under all circumstances. It 
admits of the perfect combination of sails and steam, which, for war pur- 
poses especially, is of the greatest importance. In a rough sea, the screw 
being wholly immersed, the resistance is more uniform, and the engines 
may be worked more steadily and with less danger than with the paddle- 
wheels, which, being sometimes almost wholly out of water, and at other 
times deeply immersed, subject the engines to fearful strain. With the 
screw, light, quick moving engines are required; weighing less, costing less, 
and occupying less valuable space in the vessel than paddle-wheel ma- 
chinery, which is more ponderous and costly, and must be placed in the 
middle and most valuable part of the ship. The cumbrous paddle-boxes, 
too, are dispensed with, and the resistance they offer in a head wind 
avoided. Screw steamers, properly constructed, will, therefore, have in- 
creased capacity to carry freight or fuel, and be better adapted to make 
long voyages ; they also steer better. 

For war purposes screw steamers are especially advantageous; as there are 
no paddle-boxes, a w 7 hole broadside battery may be used; the machinery 
may be wholly below the water line, beyond the reach of shot ; and the 
vessel may be fully rigged, admitting a perfect combination of sails and 

These are some of the advantages of the screw. Another may be 
claimed, viz. : diminished loss from slip — one evidence of the efficiency 
of the instrument: — The slip of the Princeton, was less than 10 per cent. 
Of the Great Britain, during her trial trip, from 9f to 13 per cent. Of 
the Liverpool screw, 5 per cent. That of the Dwarf, Mr. Rennie states 
to be I or $ ; and the slip of the Arrogant and Encounter, English men- 
of-war, is stated to be i to J- in smooth water. Mr. T. stated that it 
was surprising that the slip of the " Great Britain" was so little, because 
the surface of the propeller bore a very small proportion to the size 
of the vessel. The propeller of the Princeton, a vessel of less than a 
fourth the tonnage of the Great Britain, had a propelling surface of 120 
square feet, while the surface of the Great Britain's screw was less than 100 
feet. He was, therefore, inclined to think that the amount of slip of the 
Great Britain was much greater than stated. The slip of the best paddle- 
wheel steamers is from 20 to 27 per cent. 

He desired to say a few words about the oblique action of the screw 
propeller. This is more apparent than real. In considering the action 

Jldjourned Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 277 

of the screw, we must not regard the motion of* the screw alone, but view 
it in connexion with the onward motion of the vessel. The apparent 
obliquity disappears almost entirely, and the action of the screw is in 
fact more direct than the paddle-wheel of 
small class steamers. This may be illus- 
trated by a very simple diagram. If the 
advance of the screw in one revolution 
is from-A to B, and there were no slip, 
the vessel would move through the same 
distance; the screw would act precisely 
like a screw in a solid, and there would, of 
course, be no loss from oblique action. $ 



If, however, as is the case in practice, the vessel advances about T 9 jj of 
the pitch of the screw each revolution, the obliquity of action would 
be represented by the line D E, and would vary very little from direct 
action in a properly made screw. 

Mr. T. thought that less power, and, of course, less fuel would be 
required to produce the same speed with the screw than with a paddle- 
wheel, other things being equal. In his opinion, a true screw was the 
best form, as it is as efficient as any other simply as a propeller, and 
admits of the use of sails alone, as it will, when uncoupled from 
the engine, turn round with no other resistance than the friction 
of its shaft bearings and of the water rubbing on its surface. No other 
form possesses this desirable quality. Captain Erricsson, to whom we 
are indebted for the practical introduction of the screw as an instrument 
of propulsion, and who probably understands this subject better than any 
engineer living, used sections of a true screw. Captain Loper uses a 
propeller of four blades, having one angle of about 30 deg. at the hub, 
and 50 deg. at the periphery. 

Mr. Towne said that in most cases, screw steamers had been built in 
as cheap a manner as possible, and very frequently by incompetent per- 
sons, wholly ignorant of the principles which should govern them in 
construction. He might give many examples from his own observation, 
but it would not be proper to do so for obvious reasons. He regretted 
for the sake of the system that it had not yet had a fair chance, but he 
hoped that the day was not very distant, when a fair trial at least would 
be had. In conclusion he would remark, that it is extremely difficult 
to get reliable information in relation to the performances of steamers, 
and that with the exception of the Princeton, he had been compelled to 
quote from printed accounts, which might not be strictly accurate. 

Mr. Smith mentioned the rapid passage of the Glasgow, under steam 
and wind, as an example of propelling materially aided by sails. 

Mr. Bartol remarked, that although in favor of propellers for coastwise 
and freighting vessels of moderate capacity, when speed was not an 
object, he thought that there were some objections to propellers that 
had been overlooked by their friends, and for the purpose of bringing 
these points before the Meeting, he had solicited letters from several 
engineers of well-known standing, who had had an opportunity of fully 
testing their operation and effect under all circumstances. He was in- 
Vol. XXL— Tin ni) Seiuks. — No. 4.— Arnii., 1851. 24 

278 Franklin Institute. 

formed by Mr. Henry Hunt, a Chief Engineer in the U. S. Navy, and for 
two years chief engineer of the U. S. Steamer Princeton, that in heavy 
head winds the slip of the propeller increased very much; that when not 
making two knots per hour against the wind, the propeller would make 
twenty-eight revolutions, being the number of revolutions required to 
obtain a speed of eight knots in smooth water : this was an extreme case, 
but he had often observed when steaming head to wind, at the rate of 
three to four knots, that the propeller would make twenty-five revolutions, 
which was its usual speed when steaming six-and-a-half to seven knots 
in smooth water. Mr. Whipple, an assistant on board with Mr. Hunt, 
confirmed his statement, having observed the same result. Mr. Hunt 
also remarked that the consumption of fuel was as great per revolution 
at one time as the other. The Princeton was 165 feet long on deck, 30 
feet beam, 21 feet 8 inches hold, drawing 19 feet of water, with a propel- 
ler 16 feet diameter. 

Mr. Bartol had also been informed by Mr. Robert H. Long, assistant 
engineer, U. S. Navy, and for several months on board the U. S. Steamer 
Legare, that he had often observed the same result, and that while that 
vessel was employed on the coast survey, during the summer of 1849, 
in Chesapeake bay, he had taken particular, note of it; and that in calm 
weather, with the propeller making 31^ revolutions per minute, they 
could make six knots, but that in heading against a single reefed topsail 
breeze, they could not make steerage way with the propeller, making 34 
revolutions, and a large increased consumption of fuel; that by setting 
fore and aft sails, and falling off so as to allow them to draw, she would 
make five knots. The Legare was of iron, 140 feet long, 24 feet beam, 
11 feet hold, propeller 9 feet 6 inches in diameter. Both vessels were 
full powered, having as much boiler as any side-wheel steamer of their 

Mr. Bartol stated that it was a well known fact, that in side-wheel 
steamers, the revolutions and consumption of fuel decreased with in- 
creased resistance; that the Cunard and Collins steamers made but from 
four to six revolutions, when steaming against heavy head winds, and 
were compelled to bank up their fires; that he had examined the log of 
the U. S. Steamer Mississippi, and found this was uniformly the case. 

Mr. Bartol thought that this point had been overlooked, and wished to 
draw the attention of the Institute to the subject, that it might be pro- 
perly investigated. 

He would also remark, that the difference of cost between side-wheel 
steamers and propellers, where equal power was used, had been very 
much over-estimated, as well as the difference of room necessary for the 
machinery of the two vessels. A side-wheel steamer admits of a more 
bouyant model, and will give greater capacity to the same tonnage. 
There was abundant room for both classes of steamers, and the cheap 
manner in which many classes of propellers may be got up, will cause 
their rapid introduction; but for Atlantic steamers of the first class, he 
was not prepared to admit that the propeller could equal the side-wheel 
in speed, regularity, or economy of fuel. 

Mr. Smith inquired what is the diameter of the largest propeller screws ? 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 279 

Mr. Bartol. — That of the Great Britain is 16 feet, the Glasgow 13 
feet, the largest side wheels about 36 feet. People exaggerate their 
horse power of engines in this country ; 1000 here would be reckoned 
but 800 in Great Britain, which arises from a disposition here to make the 
most of everything on paper. 

Mr. Towne said the performance of the Princeton had been entirely 
satisfactory. He had been on board of her when she attained a speed of 
thirteen miles per hour through the water, with a slip of less than 10 per 
cent. The propeller of the Carolina, in his opinion, is not of the best 
form. He would repeat, that quick moving propeller engines would 
certainly develop a given amount of power, with less weight and space 
occupied than would be occupied by slow moving paddle-wheel en- 
gines. He thought that the stern of the Princeton was cut away more 
than was necessary. 

Mr. Bartol. — The steamer Jefferson was altered from propeller to side- 
wheel, and works better under the same circumstances. Steamer Osprey, 
500 tons, from Charleston to Philadelphia, averages nine miles per hour. 

Mr. Smith inquired if propeller engines worked quicker than others? 

Mr. Towne said, that they made more revolutions per minute, but that 
there was not a great difference in the speed of the pistons. 

Mr. Smith spoke of the Royal yacht being the fastest propeller 

Dr. Turnbull read a description of her, also the Great Britain, from an 
address of Sir J. Rennie; she was 260 tons burthen, 125 horse power, 
screw consisting of two blades, making 250 turns in a minute, with a 
speed of 15| miles per hour ; the Great Britain is 322 feet long, 3444 
tons burthen, 1000 horse power, and screw diameter of 15 feet 9 inches, 
was sixteen days going from New York to Liverpool. 

Mr. Smith inquired the comparative strain of screw machinery upon 
vessels ? 

Mr. Grice. — Could not tell; thought if the vessel were light, the pro- 
peller might by its revolution have a twirling or racking effect on the 
hull; if loaded down and with an even keel, no such action would occur; 
thought them strong as side-wheel steamers — sails will rack vessels as 
much as steam — propellers may take the lead of side- wheel steamers. 

Mr. Smith. — What effect will breaking of propeller shaft have ? 

Mr. Towne. — Little or no damage will in ordinary cases be done. If 
the last section of the shaft be uninjured, the'propeller will turn while the 
vessel is under way, without retarding the vessel greatly. 

Mr. Tathem. The greatest speed of the Great Britain was 326 miles per 
day; the Great Western in a hurricane laid too, making ten revolutions per 
minute, and no speed. Small propellers are used in England, of two 
blades, 15 feet in diameter; steamers Ohio and Georgia have two pad- 
dles, 10 feet long and 16 inch paddle-boards ; they make rapid trips. 

Mr. Towne said that propellers were steadily gaining ground in Eng- 
land, and that a mail contract for the Cape of Good Hope had been given 
to a line of screw steamers. There were now 32 British war and 100 
mercantile screw steamers in use. He would call the attention of the 
meeting to the very remarkable performance of a line of five small screw 
steamers, running from London to Mediterranean ports ; they have made 

280 Franklin Institute. 

in all 170 voyages outwards and homewards with cargoes, and have run 
a distance of 190,849 knots, at an average speed of 8 to 8^ knots per hour. 

There was one steamer of 272 tons and 33 horse power, average 8 knots, 
one " 272 " 30 " " 8 " 

two " 320 " 40 " « 8$ " 

one " 450 " 60 " " 8£ " 

This, considering the small size of the vessels, and making great allow- 
ance for nominal horse power, is a very remarkable performance, and 
has perhaps never been equalled by paddle-wheel steamers of the same 
size and power. 

Proceedings of the Stated Monthly Meeting, March 20, 1851. 

Professor John C. Cresson, in the chair. 

John C. Trautwine, Recording Secretary, pro tern. 

John F. Frazer, Treasurer. 

The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. 

Donations were received from Joseph Fletcher, Esq., of London ; 
Prof. A. D. Bache, Coast Survey ; Lieut. M. F. Maurey, U. S. Navy, 
Washington city, D. C. ; Prof. R. S. McCulloh, Princeton, N. J., and 
Messrs. Charles E. Smith, Peleg B. Savery, Wm. W. Fleming, Dr. L. 
Turnbull, Dr. G. J. Ziegler, and Prof. J. C. Cresson, of Philadelphia. 

The periodicals received in exchange for the Journal of the Institute 
were laid on the table. 

The Treasurer's statement of the receipts and payments for the month 
of February was read. 

The Board of Managers and the Standing Committees reported their 

The following Standing Committees reported their organization, by 
appointing their chairman, and the times for holding their stated 
meetings : 

On Cabinet of Arts, &c. John C. Copper, Chairman, 2d Monday evening. 
On Models, Prosper Martin, " " " 

m *■ fi a t S Dr.B.H.Rand, " ) „ 

Meeting of Institute, j Dr . L . Turnbull, Reporter, J 

Library, John Allen, Chairman, 2d Tuesday " 

Cabinet Minerals, &c. Dr. C. M. Wetherill, " 2d Wednes'y " • 
Science and the Arts, Prof. J. C. Cresson, " 2d Thursday " 
Exhibitions, Not appointed, 2d Friday " 

Meteorology, Owen Evans, " " ■* 

Candidates for membership in the Institute (8) were proposed, and 
those proposed at the last meeting (16) were elected members of the In- 

Dr. L. V. Newton, of New York, presented for the examination of the 
meeting some specimens of galvanized type, accompanied with examples 
of printing executed by them, and a letter of recommendation from Mr. 
W. B. Bodge, manager of the compositors' department of the American 
Tract Society. 

Monthly Meeting of the Franklin Institute. 281 

Dr. Newton made the following remarks : — 

"This patent is one for covering type, &c, made of the ordinary 
type metal, or any inferior metal, with a face of some more tenacious 
and durable one. Hitherto copper only has been used for this purpose, 
and it is probable that, as it is the most tenacious of all metals, with the 
exception of iron, and proposes certain other advantages besides, it will 
never be superseded by any other. 

I wish it to be understood, that I do not entirely approve of styling 
my improvement "galvanized type." The term, whether in point of 
fact, or as it is commonly understood, does not fully cover all the ground, 
nor carry all the meaning that the improvement demands. I call it 
facing type anew ; and as at present I employ copper for this purpose, 
I call it copper facing. To the new article itself, rather than the mode 
of producing it, I beg to invite your attention. 

It is apparent to those acquainted with the general character of metals, 
that, other things being equal, copper is greatly superior to any materia! 
of which printing types are usually made. The experiments of Guyton 
Morveau demonstrate that it is near eleven times more tenacious than 
lead. Both its ductility and malleability are very great, and admirably 
fit it for this new purpose to which I have applied it. This deduction 
from its known character, I have already in numerous instances proved 
true by experiment. There are types on the table that have performed 
different amounts of work, in situations where a fair comparison could 
be made between their durability and the durability of common type. 
The result has been that while the common type could only, at the most, 
stand at the head line of a* newspaper page, through a single edition of 
170,000 copies, the copper-faced passed through six editions of the same 
number, placed in the same situation, and, as you may perceive, can 
scarcely be said, even now, to be entirely destroyed. 

I have other specimens, which have done less work, and are much 
less worn. Here are types, which appear to be still in excellent working 
condition, with the hair lines nearly perfect, that have done twice the 
quantity of work that common types do in the same position. They have, 
as all copper-faced type have, a beautiful and highly burnished surface, 
that shows no disposition to tarnish in the open air. This circumstance 
is another advantage my type possesses. It requires less ink on the 
rollers and less on the face of the type, to give a fair and distinct im- 
pression; there should, therefore, be less ink wasted, and if the presswork 
be equal, the printing will look better. I have copies of the New York 
Courier and Enquirer, the Boston Daily Journal, several large sized 
weeklies, both of Boston and New York, as well as several quarterly 
and monthly publications, all of which are printed on my copper-faced 
type. Their appearance will speak for the beauty of the work. I have 
also a specimen of the most beautiful job printing, done with nearly the 
finest kind of type in use. Nothing can be more perfect than this. It 
may, I believe, be fairly assumed, that copper presents a better working 
face than almost any other metal. 

In answer to the inquiry of a member respecting the expense of copper- 

* American Messenger, published in New York, by the American Tract Society. 


282 Franklin Institute. 

faced type, I reply that it exceeds that of the common type only about 
30 per cent. 

It was inquired how the two metals might be separated when worn 
out, so that the old type metal might be employed again. The answer 
is, that there is no difficulty, as lead fuses at about 500 degrees, and cop- 
per at about 1800, so that as soon as the lead becomes fluid, the copper 
will go to the bottom unaffected by the heat. 

Will there not be constant galvanic action between the. copper and 
lead ? No, I believe not, because all the conditions for causing electric 
excitement are not present. There can be no electric action without a 
fluid to produce chemical changes. When, however, the types are moist, 
it is probable that at the visible point of contact between the two metals, 
a certain amount of electrical disturbances may ensue. But inasmuch 
as the action is wholly at the lines where the two metals join, and not 
between them, such an action can never have the effect to loosen them 
from each other. The oxidizement of lead being exterior, w T ill produce 
no sort of inconvenience ; while the copper, thus excited negatively, 
will repel oxygen, and always remain bright. This effect, I think, I have 
observed repeatedly. At first I was astonished on seeing the copper 
maintain a brilliant surface, after it had been, used, when, as it appeared 
to me, it should have been foul or tarnished. On reflectio%I concluded 
it was attributable to this single circumstance of external electric action. 
As touching types made wholly of copper, that have been spoken of, it 
will be perceived at once, by applying this fact, that they must neces- 
sarily be greatly inferior to the compound type. White moisture would 
soon so injure the body of the single metal type by rapid oxidation, that 
it could not be "justified" in lines, and could hardly, if at all, be set 
up by the compositor, the copper-faced would be quite free from both 
these objections. Types made altogether of copper, never can be used 
successfully against my type, for the reasons that I have just assigned, to 
which may be added their much greater original cost. I may add, that 
printers, generally, prefer the copper-faced to the common type for work- 
ing on, because, as they say, they can distinguish the face more readily, 
and therefore can set it up faster." 

Mr. Prosper Martin then called the attention of the meeting to speci- 
mens of a compound of iron and copper, which he had promised at the 
last meeting, and made some observations relative to the melting point 
of different kinds of iron ; he stated those given by Wedgewood, and 
proposed immersion of the heated metal in water, so as to ascertain the 
amount of specific heat when in that state. 

Dr. Hare considered this method as worthy of attention. 

Professor Frazer remarked that, from some experiments which he had 
made with the thermo multiplier, he thought that we were more likely 
to obtain satisfactory results from it. The instrument had been used for 
this purpose by several experimenters. 

Mr. Bartol stated that he had made some inquiry in relation to the 
shaft of the steamer Atlantic, and found that it was forged entirely of 
Salsbury iron, which has generally been considered the best in the country, 
and is used by the Navy Department for chain cables. The shaft turned 

Monthly Meeting of the Fran/din Institute. 283 

up in the lathe very handsomely, and was considered very superior iron. 
The break was in the journal extending diagonally out under the eccen- 
trics, and the fracture shows a perfectly sound shaft, but the grain of the 
iron is unusually large, having undergone a complete change from the 
time it was received in the bar. The exterior of the shaft was very soft, 
and it had frequently been found necessary to keep a stream of water 
running on the journals of the shafts of this steamer. Mr. B stated that 
he was informed by those who forged the shaft, that they found that the 
tendency of Salisbury iron, when worked into large masses, was to crys- 
tallize to a much greater extent than any other iron used by them. 
At present they prefer the iron made for them by Mr. Peter Cooper, at 
Trenton, N. J. 

Mr. G. W. Smith exhibited some beautiful variegated English tiles, 
the manufacture of Messrs. Minturn & Co. Their durability was superior 
to marble, as in many of the edifices of Europe tiles had been trod upon 
for nearly a thousand years, and remained almost unworn. They were 
formed of finely powdered, colored, argilacious and siliceous matter, sub- 
jected to a pressure of some 60,000 pounds, and then baked to give per- 
manent shape. The ancients arranged their mosaics in separate rhombs 
or squares, which, to be well seen, as for instance those in the Vat