J. A. (John Adolphus) Etzler.

The paradise within the reach of all men, without labour, by powers of nature and machinery : an address to all intelligent men online

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Online LibraryJ. A. (John Adolphus) EtzlerThe paradise within the reach of all men, without labour, by powers of nature and machinery : an address to all intelligent men → online text (page 6 of 14)
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wheel, with a large carding and spinning machine
of many thousand spindles. It is, however, not un-
derstood here, to make it a matter of necessity or
compulsion, to live and use the benefits of these
means together in communities. Every one may
have liberty as much as he pleases, to join or live
by himself, and still partake of a large share of the
common benefits to be derived from the application
of these means. Yet it will be soon found and per-
fectly understood by every one, that it is of his
greatest advantage, and but conducive to the greatest
sum of his happiness, if he joins to a community of
such a kind. So it may be first considered what
may be done in, and for a whole community living
together in all the enjoyments these means aftbrd,
and then this life be compared to a separate one.

There is no limit to confine us in the use of our
means, and neither sacrifice nor loss of time requisite
for giving full application to these means. There-
fore, it is neither an idle dream nor useless vanity,
to draw the picture in full of what is easily attain-
able for us ; nor forms it any part of wisdom to re-
fuse 10 us, or to those who are endeared to us, and in
general to our fellow-men, any thing that may in-
crease our happiness and that of other men, while
it is but beneficial in all its consequences for future

The object of forming a community is, to afford to
every member the possible greatest sum of enjoyments,


comforts, and pleasures, by the possible least attend-
ance of men.

To obtain these ends, a system of building is to be
contrived for lodging thousands of families together,
without causing inconvenience to any of the inhabit-
ants, and with every thing for their enjoyment with-
in their reach at any time, without trouble, while it
is put into every one's power to alford or to receive
any sociarpleasure of refined society.

I shall merely draw the outlines of a plan here for
attaining these great ends, leaving it to the option of
others to finish the sketch at their pleasure.

Every adult member of either sex is to have an
apartment for exclusive use, consisting of several
rooms, such as for sleeping, bathing, dressing, and
parlour. Children may be lodged under special care
and instruction of certain appointed persons sepa-
rately; but may also lodge with their parents, if de-
sired. Every such private apartment communicates
with the interior by a door to a spacious corridor,
and with the outside of the building by a door to a
gallery around the whole building, from thence to a
flat roof of the building. Through every jirivale
apartment pass pipes for affording at all times cold
and warm water by turning a crank, others for gas-
light, for meliorating the air, for balsamic scents, for
tempering the air in rendering it cooler or warmer,
just as the inmate desires, for moving into the apart-
ment, or removing out of it any thing at the inmate*s
desire. The victuals may, in this manner, be had
separately. The apartment of every adult may ex-


tend across the building, being then divided by the
corridor into two parts. Suppose every adult occu-
pies thus twenty-five feet in length on both sides of
the edifice, and every apartment be subdivided into
three or four rooms ; and suppose the width of the
(edifice to be 100 feet, the corridor twenty, the apart-
ments on both sides forty feet wide, so that every
person has two spaces, each about twenty-four feet
long and forty feet wide, for exclusive use. Sup-
pose such an edifice to be 1000 feet long and 100
feet wide, it could then lodge, in this manner, forty
persons. Suppose further, the edifice to be of ten
stories, each twenty feet high, and consequently the
wl\ole edifice 200 feet high, which would have then
400 such private apartments. Four such edifices
joined together in right angles, so as to form a square
of 1000 feet between them, could, in the above de-
scribed manner, lodge 1600 persons, leaving yet at
each of the four corners a square of 100]feet, which,
in the ten stories, contain forty rooms each of 100
feet square : these may be use4 for dormitories of
children. T\^

The inhabitants iifS^ ascend and descend, in the
inside, that is, in the corridors, by commodious stairs;
and at both oulsides, from the galleries that surround
the whole edifice at every story, both inside of the
square and outside ; they may ascend and descend in
boxes, which are moveable up and down, without ex-
ertion or trouble.

The square between these four edifices may be inter-
sected by four walls in one direction and four in the
other, so as to intersect each other in right angles, and


fovra twenty-five squares, each of nearly 200 ieei
square. Each of these squares may receive ils lif2:ht
from above throup;h large glasses, or a cupola full of
large windows. Those cupolas may, each by a num-
ber of properly placed large reflectors, reverberate the
day-light tlirough the glasses, and so augment the
light inside, which again is to be received and reverbe-
rated by shining walls or large mirrors, so as to dis-
perse the light in the most proper manner every where
in the inside.

All the walls, of the outside and of the partitions,
need but to consist of colonnades, the intervals of their
columns forming doors and large mirrors. Some of the
twenty-five squares may, in the same manner, be sub-
divided into smaller ones. These larger and smaller
squares are to form halls for various purposes, such as
fordining, reading, conversation, instruction, of children
and of adults ; for amusements ; for general meetings,
such as for public discourses, concerts, theatrical scenes,
balls, &c. ; one for the kitchen department, and for
stores of prepared and unprepared victuals ; the
former stores are to be subdivided into chambers and
moveable boxes. Every such box is to contain one
portion of one kind of victuals for one meal of the
community. It maybe moved, by a slight motion of
the hand, into the kitchen, where it empties itself into
the vessel ready for reception and final preparation in
cooking or baking. One or two persons are suffi-
cient to direct the kitchen business. They have
nothing else to do than to superintend the cookery, and
to watch the time of the victuals being done, and
then to remove them with the table and vessels into


the (lining hall, or to the respective private apartments,
by a slight motion of the hand at some crank. From
thence are thereafter the remaining victuals to be
removed into the store of prepared victuals.

The cleaning of the vessels and all washing of uten-
sils, floors &c., is to be done by streaming water ; the
washing of other stuff's by steam. All this requires
no work, but is done by slightly moving some crank.
Any extraordinary desire of any person may be satis-
fied by going to the place where the thing is to be had ;
and any thing that requires a particular preparation in
cooking or baking may be done by the person who
desires it.

Thus there is no occasion for any work, except the
superintendence of the kitchen department and some
other machinery, which requires from one to three
persons in all for the whole community. If done by
turns, every adult member would hardly have one turn
for one day's superintendence in the whole year. But
it would probably be done voluntarily by the greatest
part, without waiting for their turn ; it being but an
amusement, aud no tedious occupation or labour.

The policy would be a matter of special arrange-
ment of the community.

These outlines of the purposes of the edifice, and
the materials, means, and powers that are at our dis-
posal, give the ideas of the architecture to be adopted.
I repeat it, it is not for a vain show and mere idle
pomp, that I am drawing a fanciful picture ; but a
perfect harmony of means and wants must dictate all
the contrivances to be made ; and it is this intended



harmony that induces me to give a fall sketch of the
objects wiihin our reach.

The system of the building is to be adapted to give
the most convenient lodgings, with the greatest com-
forts and enjoyments by the least trouble, to the
greatest sum of individuals in the smallest space
These purposes seem to be attainable in the greatest
perfection possible by the system as mentioned. A
space of about 1200 feet square, or nearly one six-
teenth part of a square mile, may contain, inclusive,
children, 3,000 to 4,000 individuals, with the following
conveniences: —

Each adult member has, out of his apartment, a free
view into the envirions around the habitation, and an
immediate communication with the halls in the inside
of the square. He may walk, inside or outside of the
square, upon the galleries that surround every story.
He may Uscend to any story above his, or to the flat
roof of the whole square, or descend to any gallery
below bis story, or to the ground, in a box, without
trouble, easy and quick, both inside and outside of the
square. He may thus move without exertion, in a few
seconds, to any part of the square, inside and outside,
every individual having a box inside and another one
outside for his own use, fixed in a proper manner at
the galleries by his apartment. He may procure to
himself all common articles of his daily wants, by a
short turn of some crank, without leaving his apart-
ment. He may at any time bathe himself in cold or
warm water, or in steam, or in some artificially pre-
pared li(j[uor for invigorating health. He may at any


time give to the air in liis apartment that temparatnre
that suits his feeling best. He may cause at any time
an agreeable scent of various kinds. He may at any
time meliorate his breathing air, this main vehicle of
vital power. The science of chemistry, in our days,
teaches this to be done in a high degree. Man is
depending, physically and morally, from the things
that surround him, and chiefly from the temperature
and the qualities of the air he breathes and absorbs
through his pores. Impure and and inferior air is
more hurtful to health and temper than bad water ;
the difference is only, that the bad qualities and impu-
rities of water are partly seen and tasted, while those
of the air are invisible. Nobody would like to drink
out of a stinking pool ; still the invisible air, which is
continually inhaled and immediately transformed into
component parts of our own body and life, is of far
greater importance for life ; so much, at least, that the
same human individual, with the same food and habits,
may in one kind of air lire with a decaying health,
pale and sallow face, general debility, digestion and
all other vital functions enfeebled, susceptible of vari-
ous diseases, till finally premature death or accelerated
decrepitude concludes his existence : while in another
kind of air he may enjoy a vigorous health, a cheerful
temper, possess a blooming countenance, and the best
energies of all vital functions, and thus reach an age
far beyond the common period of human life ; yet the
difference of air would be neither seen nor smelt.
'I'lierefore, by a proper application of the physical
knowledges of our days, man may be kept in a perpe-
tual serenity of mind, and, if there is no incurable

disease or defect in his organism, in constant vigour of
Lcnlll), and lluis his life he prolonged heyond any
inown period of human life of our present time.

The edillce is to he provided with large ice-cellars,
suflicient to furnish at all limes the inmates with cool
streams of air or water through every private apart-
ment, as well as through the halls. There is also a
heating apparatus for procuring warm air or water
"wherever it he desired.

All this is to be effected, not by a complicated ma-
chinery, hut in the most simple way.

The character of architecture is to be quite different
from what it ever has been hitherto. There are vehi-
cles to be used for moving several thousand tons at
once, and putting them into their destined place.
Hence large solid masses are to be baked or cast in
one piece, ready shaped in any form that may be
desired. The building may therefore consist in columns
200 feet high and upwards, of proportionate thickness,
and of one entire piece of vitrified substance. These
columns may form colonnades both for surrounding the
whole square and dividing and subdividing it into all
the required larger andsmallersquares, for the private
jipartments, the halls and their subdivisions. The floors
and ceilings of each such square may be of one entire
piece of the same or similar vitrified substance. The
intervals of the columns along them are to form the
doors, windows, mirrors, pictures, 6ce., for the parti-
lions and outside walls. All these huge pieces are to
"bemouldedsoas tojoin and hook into each other firmly,
by proper joints or folds, and not to yield in any with-
out breaking.


Thus a system of buildings, indestructible for many
thousands of years, consisting of but entire columns
and plates of hard vitrified substance, is to be erected
in a most simple way, without expense or labour, with
but little time, after the first simple tools are made.
And what difference between this system of building
and the most magnificient palaces and temples that
ever were known !

The substance may be died with various beautiful
colours. So the colonnades with the reliefs, bas-reliefs^
pictures and sculptures, copied in a mechanical way,
and ornaments of every kind, on and between the co-
lumns, may all radiate with crystal-like brilliancy of
the most beautiful and indestructible colours — all this
reflected and multiplied by mirrors and reflectors of
various kinds.

All parts of the edifice may be furnished with beau-
tiful carpets and couches along the walls, which in the
halls may rise amphitheatrically behind one another,
moveable seats and tables, and every thing that may
afford convenience or please the fancy.

The twenty-five halls in the inside of the square,
each 200 feet square and high ; the forty corridors,
each 1,100 feet long and twenty feet wide ; the eighty
galleries, each from 1,000 to 1,250 feet long; about
7,000 private rooms ; the whole surrounded and inter-
sected by the grandest and most splendid colonnades
imaginable ; floors, ceilings, columns with their vari-
ous beautiful and fanciful intervals, all shining, and
reflecting to infinity all objects and persons, with
splendid lustre of all beautiful colours and fanciful
shapes and pictures ; every where the most elegant

H 2


couches, seat?, tables, ^c ; all galleries, outside and
Avithin tlie balls, provided with many tbousand commo-
dious and most elegant vehicles, in wliich persons may
move up and down, like birds, in perfect security, and
"without exertion; the elegant galleries with beautiful
balustrades and various ornaments; the flat roof of the
Avhole square, 1:250 feet square, with its twenty-five
cupolas, each upwards of 100 feet in diameter, with*
mazes of pleasant galleries, turrets, places for various
purposes, vaulted alleys, pavilions, and many various
ornaments and commodities : at night the roof, and
the inside and outside of the whole square are illumi-
nated by gas-light, which, in the mazes of many co-
loured crystal, like colonades and vaultings and re-
ilectors, is reverberated with a brilliancy that gives to
the whole a lustre of precious stones as far as the eye
can see — such are the future abodes of men ! —

The environs of this residence are no less beautiful.
The building is to be erected on an elevated spot, ar-
tificially made, if not formed by nature already, with a
commanding view,npon an extensive landscape, of the
most fanciful and varied beauties of nature and art,
Avilh all the luxuriancy and variety of growth that
such a superior culture of soil and a fine climate afford.
— And why pass a dreary winter every year, while
there is yet room enough on the globe where nature is
iljlessed with a perpetual summer, and with a far
p'cater variety and luxuriancy of vegetation ? — More
than one half of the surface of the globe has no win-
ter. Men will have it in their power to remove and
prevent all bad influences of climate, and to enjoy
perpetually only that temperature which suits their

constitution and feelings l»cs(. . 'J'licro willhc afTovdcd
the nio;-t enrapturing views to be faueicd, out oT the
private apartments, from the galleries, from the roof,
from its turrets and cupolas — gardens as far as the eye
can sec, full of-fruils and llowers arranged in the
most beautihil order, with walks, colonades, aqueducts,
canals, ponds, plains, amphitheatres, terraces, foun-
tains, sculptural works, pavilions, gondolas, places
for public amusements, &c,. &c., delight the eyes and
fancy, the taste and smell.

The night affords no less delight tx) fancy and feel-
ings. All infinite variety of grand, beautiful, and
fanciful objects and sceneries, radiating with crys-
taline brilliancy of all colours every where inside and
outside of the square, by the illumination of gas-
light ; the human figures themselves, arrayed in the
most beautiful pomp that fancy may suggest and the
eye may delight, shining, even with brilliancy of stuff
and diamond, like stones of various colours, elegantly
shaped and arranged around the body ; all reflected
thousandfold in huge mirrors and reflectors of various
forms ; theatrical scenes of a grandeur and magnifi-
cence and enrapturing illusions unknown yet, in which
any person may be either a spectator or actor : the
speech and the songs reverberating with increased sound
rendered more sonorous andharmonious than by nature,
by vaultings that arc moveable into any shape at any
time ; the sweetest and most impressive harmony of
music, produced by song and instruments partly not
known yet, may thrill through the nerves, and vary
with other amusements and delights.

Such is the life reserved to true intelligence, but


withheld from ignorance, prejudice, and stupid adhe-
rence to custom.

And what is all the material for so enchanting and
unheard of abodes, sceneries, ornaments, dress, com-
forts, luxuries, delights? Nothing but the most com*
mon, the most neglected stuff in nature, earth, sand,
clay, stones, the substances of vegetables that hitherto
had no value and no use but for dung. And what is
the expense for producing such great things? None,
except for the first machineries, of very simple con-
struction, and for the first moulds of all things to be
artificially made; for the machineries themselves, as
well as the moulds for casting the materials for use,
are to be made by the same machineries, and may
then be multiplied to any number required, without
any labour or expense.

Such is the domestic life to be enjoyed by every
human individual that will partake of it. How different
from that of even the mightiest monarch, or the richest
man of our times ? — No fear of beingrobbed or cheated^
no cares of managing the household, none even for
the education of children ; for this will be provided
for, by a ivise people, in a general way, for generating
and cultivating good feelings and instructing the mind
of all what is to be known ; no anxiety for preserving
or increasing property, no disgusting objects and oc-
cupations vexes there the mind ; no low vices and
crimes, resulting from want, or fear of want, and po-
verty, surround man ; there is but one desire predomi-
nant in all ; — this is, to live as happy as they can, and
in order to live so, to please and to be pleased. Love
and affection may there be fostered and enjoyed with-


out any of the obstriiclions that oppose, diminish, and
destroy them in the present eommon state of men.
The minds and feelings will be enlivened by nobler
springs, in proportion of their physical and mental
improvement, which therefore may cause a character
as superior to the present civilized men as this is to
that of savage cannibals ; for there will be no object,
and no cause, any more for low cunning and deceit,
for gaining advantage over his fellow-creature in for~
tune and rank ; the dealings between man and man
within the community consist no more in selling as
dear as possible, and buying as cheap as possible ; there
is no traffic, because every thing is as cheap as water,
and as free as air ; there is a very different kind of
dealings to step into the room of our present market
business : this is to eirjoy life as well as possible by
mutual sociality, by social arrangements, by reciprocal
communictions, by public pleasures and instruction.
Man sees there himself, not waited upon and sur-
rounded by low, miserable, degraded beings, which he
has to watch, to pity, or despise. There he sees him-
self and his endeared friends, and his fellow-men in
general, raised to the highest station that human life
be capable of.

Is this, perhaps, to be called but a fancy ? What
should hinder man from enjoying his life in such a
superior state of general happiness, when a plain way
is shown to him for attaining it? There is a stronger
impulse in human nature for enjoying happiness, far
stronger than all futile sophistry could pretend against
it. Man is made for society, not for solitude, like beasts
of prey. He is made for joy, not for mourning his life


away. He is a being capable of great sufieiings and of
great enjoyments. The fears of the ones and the
hopes of the others actuate him. It is but miscon-
ception of our destination, barbarism, ignorance, super-
stition, and insanity itself, that may prefer suffering
to enjoyment, or a less sum of happiness to a greater
one. The greatest sum of happiness is only to be
found in social and friendly life : this will and must be
courted, when the causes of enmity between man and
man have ceased. These causes of enmity are unavoid-
able in our present state of society and general poverty.
But they all will and must subside in a state of super-
abundance and liberation from all disagreeable labour
and occupation, and opposite interest.

There is no variety of opinions to be dreaded. Let
there be as many and different opinions as you please,
there will be no compulsion ; every one may live as he
pleases; but there will be no diflference in the desire
of living happy, and therefore peaceably. This desire
will be sufficient to let each other in peace, and to wish
and seek friends with whom to communicate and par-
take of the ideas and enjoyments.

Will it, perhaps, be said, man will grow weary of his
time by living but in enjoyments and idleness.^ It is
true, man will be no more a slave to work and drudgery
and insipid occupations; he will be no longer under
the sad necessity to struggle through life for life; his
anind will no longer be absorbed by mechanical pursuits
for his livelihood, for earning money ; he will no
longer, like a beast of burden, live but for to work>
and work but for to live. What, is man such a poor,
miserable creature by nature, that he cannot live with-


out living like a heast of burden, like a slave? Is
there no better destination of the human being to be
looked for? Is he, perhaps, of so corrupted and so
hideous a nature , that he must he kept in fetters of
slavery like a dangerous, mad animal ? A very fine
doctrine, indeed, for all tyrants to keep their fellow-men
in subjection and stupidity, in order to make use of it
for themselves! No wonder if such doctrines were
preached with great sanctimoniousness to the multi-
tude, in countries of unlimited despotism ; and no
wonder if such doctrines got so deeply inveterated into
the minds, by length of time and continual repetition,
that they were transplanted even to happier and freer

Man will grow weary of any thing, where he sees
nothing but sameness and tediousness. But does it
follow thence, that he will grow less weary of his time
when he is made less happy ? Will he grow less weary
of time, when his resources of pleasures and enjoy-
ments are made less, and his drudgery, cares, and vex-
ations are made more? A curious piece of logic, to
affirm such monstrous absurdity ! Yet it may be used
by some who pretend to large share of wisdom.

Let us cast a glance to the resources that men will
immediately possess in this new , happy condition for
passing and enjoying their life,

Man may spend the greatest part of his life in com-
pany of the objects of his love and aflection, increasing
thereby his own happiness and that of his endearments
in conversing with them, and imparting to and receiv-
ing from them pleasure and instruction, in passing

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Online LibraryJ. A. (John Adolphus) EtzlerThe paradise within the reach of all men, without labour, by powers of nature and machinery : an address to all intelligent men → online text (page 6 of 14)