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Chemistry In America

by Edgar F.smith

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Text extracted from opening pages of book: CHEMISTRY IN AMERICA CHAPTERS FROM THE HISTORY OF THE SCIENCE IN THE UNITED STATES BY EDGAR F. SMITH BLANCHAHD PROFE8BOB OF GBK1I1STBT DN1VK881TT OF FENN8TLVANIA ILLUSTRATED D. APPLETON AND COMPANY NEW YORK AND LONDON MCMXTV COPYRIGHT, 1914, BY D. APPLETON AND COMPANY Printed in the United States of America ROBERT HARE THIS BOOK IS AFFECTIONATELY DEDICATED TO MY STUDENTS PREFACE The writer has lectured for several years to his grad uate students on the development of Chemistry in the United States. A mass of material has been collected, most of which is not only interesting but valuable. Re peated requests have been made for the publication of these facts as a history of chemistry in the United States. To the writer's mind the information in his possession is not sufficiently complete to warrant such an important undertaking. The earliest endeavors of our country's scientists require even more careful and extended search ing out. Three addresses, delivered before the Chemical Society of Philadelphia, are included in the material collected by the author. These exhibit an earnest interest in chemis try in the early days of the Republic, and show, also, that despite unfavorable conditions our forefathers were eager to cultivate the science that promised so much for their country. Another proof of the genuine appreciation of the value of chemistry is evidenced by the founding of two Chemical Societies before a similar movement had been initiated anywhere else in the world. Minutes of these organizations have not been discovered. If found, they would surely contain most valuable information. Other papers, written during these early years, are even vii PREFACE now most difficult to procure, and as time passes will become more inaccessible. These Chapters are submitted, then, that chemists of to-day may have, in easily accessible form, copies, at least, of some of the real treasures of our science, and with the hope that through them they may be stimulated to search for other, still hidden, documents of equal or of greater value. And, as incentives to the highest endeavors, there have been included brief sketches of the life histories of such men as Wolcott Gibbs, F. A. Genth, J. Lawrence Smith, Lea, Cooke, Willard Gibbs and others who have enriched the science of chemistry in this country, and whose names are still familiar to the student. This compilation of chemical achievement in the United States has brought to the writer great joy, and a fund of helpful information, which he earnestly wishes may be shared by all who chance to read these pages. In conclusion, the author's sincere thanks are extended to all persons and societies whose letters, books and docu ments have been drawn upon and used in this labor of love. He also gratefully acknowledges his indebtedness to his colleague Professor Walter T. Taggart for pre paring the illustrations, which have been so successfully copied from old prints and photographs. viu CONTENTS CHAPTER I PAGES CONTRIBUTIONS OF AMERICANS TO CHEMISTRY. Early Papers by de Normandie; by J. Madison; by M'Caus lin 1-11 CHAPTER II THE CHEMICAL SOCIETY OF PHILADELPHIA. Its Formation. Thomas P. Smith's Oration before the Society in 1798: A Sketch of the Revolutions in Chemistry. Women Participators in Chemistry. Columbian Mineral. Obituary of Thomas P. Smith 12-43 CHAPTER III THE CHEMICAL SOCIETY OF PHILADELPHIA, CONTINUED. Of ficers of the Society. Advertisements of the Society. Oration by Pascalis in 1802 44-75 CHAPTER IV JAMES WOODHOUSB. Woodhouse's Chemical Catechism. The Young Chemist's Pocket Companion ( 1797). Pages from the Same. Woodhouse's Answer to Priest ley's Arguments against the Antiphlogistic System of Chemistry: Calcination of Metals in Air; Fixed Air; CONTENTS PAGES Finery Cinder; Precipitation of One Metal by Another; Air in Charcoal. Woodhouse's Letter to Maclean. Methods of Obtaining Oxygenous Gas. Silliman's Word-Picture of Woodhouse. Rush on W



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