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than Bobton, and naturally in many things ahead of Boston. Our
friends at Boston are just now indulging themselves in a good deal
of jubilation over a certain subway which they seem to have just
completed, and whicli they seem to regard as a signal triumph of
their engineering genius. But, my friends, said the speaker, for
sixty years past it has been impossible to get out of Salem by rail
to the eastward without passing through a subway successfully
operated all these years under the very heart of the city. So in
other matters. Our Boston friends will give you to understand
that they had more or less to do with bringing on the Revolution,
and will tell you a good deal about the breaking up of Boston town
meetings by British authority, and about Lexington and Concord
and Bunker Hill and John Hancock and Samuel Adams. This is
all very well : it pleases them and does no harm to anybody. But
Mr. Webster, in his immortal oration on the death of Adams and
Jefferson, says that the vote which cut Massachusetts adrift from
the home government was passed at Salem town house just a year
to a day before Bunker Hill. And it happens that, only two
months later, — a good many months before any Boston town
meeting had been interfered with by British authority. Gage
marched his Fifty-ninth regiment up to town from their camp on



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584 FEATURES OF THE FIFTIETH ANMIVERSART MEETING

this very Salem neck, in an abortive attempt to disperse with
bayonet and powder and ball a Salem town meeting. Timothy
Pickering had proved as intractable as Samuel Adams.

And let me say in this connection that while the British carried
their point at Lexington and Concord and captured Bunker Hill,
in each case accomplishing what they were sent foi*th to do, they
had planned in February, four months before Bunker Hill — two
months before Lexington and Concord — just such a raid on Sa-
lem, and had come to Salem on that errand, with the Sixty-fourth
regiment stealthily embarked from Boston Harbor, but after a little
parley with some of our old sea-dogs, they concluded to return to
Boston without the guns they were sent to capture and reported
to Gage that those Salem folk were too much for them, and that
they had accomplished nothing.

Professor Morse spoke delightfully of the former visits of the
Association to Salem — the first in 1869, when it paascd a week
here, and next in 1880 when it visited Salem for a day and dined
at Kcrnwood. His remarks called up pleasant memories to many
who had been present on one or both of those occasions. Mayor
Waters gracefully extended the hospitality of the ancient borough.

A luncheon in the adjoining pavilion followed. The menn was
printed In what may be termed zoological and botanical Latin
and was the source of much amusement. After the luncheon the
members in attendance divided into groups and under the guidance
of sections of a large local committee of the Essex Institute and
Peabody Academy of Science, visited different points of Interest
In accordance with a printed itinerary furnished by the local com-
mittee. The main headings of the Itinerary included educational
institutions, points of geological interest, colonial architecture,
old cemeteries, points of interest In connection with the history
of witchcraft in New England, the City Hall, North Bridge and
points connected with Hawthorne's life in Salem.

The Essex Institute had just commemorated its first half-cen-
tury and the fiftieth aniversarles of the two associations thus coin-
cided. The Institute, therefore, extended an especial welcome to
the Association and a committee of ladles was In attendance at the
rooms of this old and important organization to entertain visiting
members of the Association. At four o'clock the steamer returned
to Boston where the Association reunited in the evening to listen



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NOT INCLUDED IN OTHER REPORTS. 585

to illustrated lectures on the Metropolitan Water Supply by the
Hon. Henry H. Sprague, and on Transit in Boston, by the Hon.
Geo. H. Crocker.

CAMBRIDGE DAY.

By invitation of the President and Fellows of Harvard Univer-
sity the Association was the guest of Harvard University on
Friday, August 26, which was designated in the programs as
'•Cambridge Day." A committee to welcome the Association,
composed of members of the faculty and ladies, was arranged by
President Eliot. All departments of Harvard University were
thrown open for inspection and the oflScers of the University were
present at the different laboratories and museum to jjive special
explanations. As above indicated an elaborate and beautifully
illustrated guide book of the University had been prepared b}- a
committee of the Faculty for the use of members of the Associa-
tion. Section H held a largely attended meeting in the Peabody
Museum. Section G was given a special exhibition in the Depart-
ment of Botany. The visits to the different departments of the
University began at 10 :80 in the morning and at 12 :30 luncheon
was served in Memorial Hall. Restricted receptions were given
by several of the officers of the University, among which may be
mentioned a tea by Professor Farlow, Vice-president and Chair-
man of Section G. A general tea was given by the corporation of
the University in Memorial Hall at 6 o'clock. In the evening, the
Association assembled at Sanders Theatre together with many
prominent citizens of Cambridge and Boston. The President of
the Association, Professor Putnam, presided, and introduced Pres-
ident Eliot, of Harvard University, who delivered the address
whfch follows under a separate heading. This address was one
of so great importance and such widespread interest that the
Council of the Association, by special resolution, requested of
President Eliot permission to publish it in full.

The meeting, as a whole, was thus a memorable one and fitly
marked the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Associa-
tion. Probably no other meeting, certainly none within the recol-
lection of the writer, has been so notable in the attendance of so
many of the older and more prominent scientific men of the United
States. No less than nine past presidents of the Association took



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586 FEATURES OF THE FIFTIETH ANKIVERSART MEETING.

part in the discassions of the week, and it is a remarkable fact that
the distinguished man who presided, Prof. Wolcott Gibbs, was one
of the five survivors of the group of scientific men who founded
the Association fifty years ago. A painful fact connected with the
meeting, which deserves especial mention here, is that Prof. James
Hall of Albany, also one of the founders of the Association, died
on his way to this meeting.

L. O. Howard.



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ADDRESS

BY

CHARLES W. ELIOT,

PRESIDENT OF HARVARD UNIVERSITY.



DESTBUCTIVE AND CONSTRUCTIVE ENERGIES OF OUR
GOVERNMENT COMPARED,



Wk have been witnessing during the past five months an extra-
ordinary exhibition of energy on the part of the Government of the
United States in making sudden preparation for the War with
Spain, and in prosecuting that war to a successful issue. As men
of science, or teachers or promoters of science, we have a special
interest in the lessons of the war ; because the instruments and
means used in modem warfare are comparatively recent results of
scientific investigation and of science applied in the useful arts.
Moreover, the serviceable soldier or sailor is himself a result, not
only of moral inheritance and instruction, but of training in the
scientific processes of exact observation, sure inference, and accu-
rate manipulation. It is not the linguistic side of school training
which makes the effective soldier or sailor; it is the scientific side.
His vocabulary may be limited though expressive, and his grammar
false ; but his eye must be true, his judgment sound and prompt,
and his hand capable of using instruments of precision.

Many suppose that chemistry, mathematics, and physics are the
only sciences which have contributed to the resources of modern
warfare. This is far from the fact. Biological science is an im-
portant contributor. The first-relief package, which every soldier
carries, is crammed with surgical knowledge which the world waited

(687)



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588



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for till the last quarter of the nineteenth century. The hospital
ship Bay State \s full of appliances for the care of the sick and
wounded which are new within twenty years, and have all resulted
from scientific discoveries and inventions made in times of peace,
and for purposes the opposite of warlike. Physiological science
has really arrived at valuable conclusions with regard to the sol-
dier's diet — the indispensable foundation of his effectiveness —
conclusions which relate to portability, nutritiousness, and adapta-
tion to different climates ; though it must be confessed that these
conclusions do not seem to have affected as yet the practice of the
United States Commissary Department.* Financial science is also

»The ration of tho United States soldier Is a liberal one in comparison with that of
other armies; but if the Commissary Department avails Itself of the option to Issue
pork or bacon, It Is a ration ill -adapted to a warm climate. Nevertheless, good cooking
would make the American ration an acceptable and wholesome one.

War Rations:

British soldier in India : Quantity allowed daily

Meat with bone, .... 16.00 ounces

Bread, .16.00 "

Potatoes, .... 16.00 "

Rice, 4.00 •*

Sugar, 3.50 ••

Tea, 0.71 "

Salt, 0.«6 ••



Total,



65.87



German Soldier:



Bread, 26.50

Fresh or Raw salt meat, . - 13.25
or Smoked Beef, Mutton,

Ham, Bacon, or Sausage, - 8.82

Rice or ground Barley, . 4.41

or Peas, Beans, or Flour, 8,8i

or Potatoes, - 68.00

Salt, 0.90

Coffee roasted, .... 0.90

or Coffee raw, 1.00



United States soldier:

Fresh meat,
or Salt Beef,
or Pork or Bacon

Bread or Flour,

Potatoes,

Peas or Beans,

Rice, - .

Sugar, .

Coffee raw.

Salt,



20.(10

22.00

12.00

18.00

16.00

2.40

l.AO

2.40

1.90

0.26



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CHARLES W. KLIOT. 589

a contributor of prime importance ; since success in war depends
more and more on the command of money and credit. To this war
with Spain we owe the most effective revenue bill, or rather the
only comprehensive revenue bill, the country has had within a
whole generation.

It cannot be doubted, then, that the energy put forth by our Gov-
ernment for the immeiliate purpos*^ of capturing or destroying Span-
ish vessels, forts, towns, and war material, and incidentally killing,
wounding, and starving Spaniards, has been a great exhibition of
power in applied science, and as such must commend itself espec-
ially to the attention of this Association. I hear already a protest
against the thought that men of science can have any special inter-
est in war, — war the supreme savagery, the legalization of robbery
and murder, the assemblage of all cruelties, crimes, and horrors, set
up as an arbiter of international justice. I recall the indictment set
forth by Charles Sumner forty years ago in his address on the War
System, ^^ thaf this trade of barbarians, this damnable profession,
is a part of the War System, sanctioned by International Law ; and
that war itself is hell, recognized, legalized, established, organized
by the Commonwealth of Nations for the determination of Inter-
national questions !"^ This is tlie jurist^s and philanthropist's view.
But the man of science lias another view of war. He regards it as
the worst survival of savage life, still occasionally unavoidable be-
cause of other survivals of the savage state, such as superstition.



»" •Give them hell,* was the language written on a elate by a speechless dying •
American officer. ' Ours Is a damnable profet^sion/ was the confession of a veteran
British General. • War is a trade of barbarians,' exclaimed Napoleon In a moment
of truthful remorse, prompted by his bloodiest field. Alas! these words are not too
strong. The business of War cannot be other than a trade of barbarians -— a dam-
nable profession; and War itself is certainly Hell on earth. But consider well — do
not forget— let the idea sink deep into your souls, animating you to constant endeav-
org — that this trade of barbarians, this damnable profession, is apart of the Warsys-
tern, sanctioned by International Law; and that War Itself Is Hell, recognized, legal-
ized, established, organized by the Commonwealth of Nations, for the determination of
International questions !" (War System of the Commonwealth of Nations : an address
by Charles Sumner, before the American Peace Society, at its Anniversary In Boston,
May 28, 1849. Boston: Pratt Brothers, 37 Comhill, 1869. Stereotype Edition. In
pursuance of the above vote of our Society, several large editions were Issued; but,
thinking that a performance of such signal ability ought to have a still wider and
more permanent circulation, we asked permission to stereotype it. Mr. Sumner
kindly consented; and In preparing this edition, he has made no alteration In any
principle or argument from the original address, his views, like our own, having ex-
perienced on the question of Peace and War, no change from any events of the last
twenty years. Geo. C. Beckwith, Corresponding Secretary. Boston, Jan., 18«9.)



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590 ADDRESS BT

passion uncontrolled, and lust of wealth and power. He recog-
nizes the fact that war makes a temporary and local hell on earth,
and that all its characteristic activities are destructive ; whereas
all the normal activities of a free government should be construc-
tive, and intended to promote the good of its citizens and general
civilization ; but he does not accept Sumner's dictum in his oration
of 1846 on *' The True Grandeur of Nations," *' There can be no
war that is not dishonorable." He recognizes that occasional war,
and therefore constant preparedness for war, are. still necessary to
national security, just as police, courts, prisons, and scaffolds are
still indispensable to social order and individual freedom in the
most civilized and peaceful states. Moreover, the man of science
perceives that, while the immediately destructive objects in war are
savage and barbarous, the instrumentalities and forces used in mod-
ern warfare are closely akin to the great constructive agencies and
forces in human society. The battleship is, to be sure, the most
complex and the crudest machine yet constructed l)y man ; but all
its parts, except its armament and its armor, are not only appli-
cable in works of peace, but have actually been wrought out for
peaceful constructive purposes. The organization and disciplined
skill which make possible the equipment of great bodies of soldiers
within a few weeks, and their transportation to distant lands with
incredible speed and safety, are the same sort of organization and
skill needed in every great productive industry ; and the mecliani-
ical and electrical engineers, who have become indispensable in war-
fare, have been developed, not for war, but for modern industries and
systems of transportation. The applications of Bessemer steel in
war are not its primary uses ; its peaceful constructive application^
give it its primary value. The application of compressed air for
the transmission of power was not invented for the dynamite gun,
but for tunnelling and mining. The ammonia refrigerating process
was not invented for hospital uses in war, but for domestic and
commercial cold storage. No nation can now succeed in war which
has not developed in peace a great variety of mechanical, chemical,
and biological arts. The normal activities of these arts must and
do tend to advance humane civilization. Their application to the
destructive cruelties of warfare is abnormal. Yet, inasmuch as
they are applied in war with a prodigious energy and intensity,
it may well be that the acute horrors of even the shortest war may



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CHARLES W. ELIOT. 591

have a lesson for the long normal periods of peace. The destruc-
tive activities of the Government of the United States are abnormal
and rare ; but they are intense, and they attract in a l^igh degree
the attention and interest of the people. I therefore wish to call
your attention to some of the lessons which this unusual energy of
the Government in war suggests in regard to its normal activities
in times of peace.

One further introductory explanation seems to be needed for the
sake of clearness. There is a class of a priori social philosophers
who would not be at all content with this moderate claim that times
of war may have useful lessons for peaceful times ; for they be-
lieve that the virtues bred and the habits established in war alone
make possible the assured progress of society during peace ; and
that, therefore, occasional wars are to be welcomed as renovators
of society, which during peace tends to corruption, luxury, and
enfeebling vices. Now men of science, so far as I have observed,
generally think that this doctrine just reverses the real order of
cause and effect. They do not consider the martial virtues —
courage, endurance, loyalty, and the willingness to subordinate
self-interest to the interest of clan, tribe, or nation — to be the
supreme and ultimate objects towards which the human race must
struggle on. They regard these virtues as the elementary, funda-
mental, preliminary viitues, which can be cultivated in man's sav-
age state, and so become the stepping-stones of his moral advance ;
but they know, on the demonstrative evidence of both history and
natural history, that these virtues may coexist with cruelty, rapac-
ity, and lust, and an almost complete indifference to both truth and
justice. Civilization, in their eyes, means the adding of justice,
truth, and gentleness to the martial virtues, an addition which does
not necessarily involve any countervailing subtraction. The civil-
ized man should be as brave, enduring, self-sacrificing, and loyal
as the savage, and should also be just, truthful, magnanimous, and
gentle. The warlike virtues are those of the hunter, and war is a
chase with man the prey ; but as man rises in the scale of civiliza-
tion, he is less and less the nomad and the hunter. Truly, it is not
war which prepares men for worthy and successful lives in times of
peace. On the contrary, it is worthy life in time of peace on the
part of individual men or a nation of men, which prepares for suc-
cess in war ; and this principle is quite as true of men in the sav-



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▲ DDRRSS BT



age state as in the civilized. The winning tribe in savage warfare
is that which in peace lives habitually a simple, hardy, robust life,
loves the chase and daring sports, travels fast and far afoot, and
subsists at need on what it can find on the way, or carry with it
in the rudest methods. In civilized warfare, that nation will be
successful which produces plenty of healthy, vigorous, intelligent
men, who have added to the ancient martial virtues a moral quality
which free institutions can best develop, namely — individual ini-
tiative and self-reliance — and have acquired skill in a great variety
of useful arts. Do we not all believe that the normal activities of
peace under free institutions are the best possible, though not the
only necessai-y, preparation for inevitable war, and thai such nor-
mal activities of the nation never need to be purified or uplifted by
avoidable war? Nevertheless, we may also believe that some
lessons for times of peace can be drawn from the prodigiously
stimulated activity of the Government and the sacrifices of the
people in time of war.

The first important inference which may be drawn from the ex-
perience of our Government and people during the past five months
is anthropological — it is the permanence of the martial virtues
and their commonness. In any vigorous race these virtues may
fairly be called inextinguishable. A whole generation has passed
since this country has been at war, just as a whole generation
passed between the war of 1812 and the Mexican War; and yet
courage, endurance, and patience were promptly exhibited by hun-
dreds of thousands of our young men. The extinction of the
soldierly qualities is not at all to be feared in a robust race in-
habiting the temperate zone, which cultivates manly sports, and
pursues on land and sea all the occupations which require the
maintenance of a watchful struggle against adverse powers of
nature, or the utilization of natural forces of mysterious and
formidable intensity. Civilized society is always maintaining a
perilous conflict with natural forces, which ordinarily serve man's
purposes, but sometimes try to overwhelm him. Fire, the greatest
of man's inventions, and his humblest servant, suddenly breaks
out into destructive fury ; wind ordinarily fills his sails, turns his
mills, and refreshes the atmosphere of his cities, but now and then
in spots sweeps from the surface of the eaith and sea all man's
works — crops, buildings, vehicles and vessels. The mineral oil



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CHARLES W. ELIOT. 593

which every night lights so brilliantly the humblest homes in every
clime occasionally kills the ignorant or careless user, or sets a
huge city in flames. Any single-minded worm or insect will be
too much for man, unless man knows how to set some other crea-
ture of one idea at destroying the first invader. How small is the
range of the thermometer within which man can live with comfort
or even safety ! A change of a few degrees below or above the
normal range sets him fighting for his life. This conflict with ex-
ternal nature is the great school of mankind in courage, persistence,
patience, and forethought ; and mankind never needs any other.
The professional soldier may be softened, and perhaps corrupted,
by a long period of peace ; for in peaceful times he may have noth-
ing to do, or at least his occupation may be so slight and dull as
not to keep his physical and mental powers at full play ; but a cit-
izen soldiery, when free from the horrible activities of war, returns
promptly to the labors of peace, and escapes the dangers to which
a professional soldiery is exposed. It is, then, the regular pur-
suits and habits of a nation in times of peace which prepare it for
success in war ; and not the virtues bred in war which enable it to
endure peace.

The second lesson to be drawn from the recent experience of
the nation in war is the immense value of long- prepared, highly-
trained public service. The instant efficiency of our navy is a
striking demonstration of this principle, which of course needs no
enforcement before men devoted to science ; but does need to be
brought home to the great body of our people. The war teaches
that though a navy can be extemporized for the purposes of trans-
port and blockade, for fighting purposes the trained naval expert
is the invaluable man, whether in command or behind a gun or in
the engine room. The preparedness of our Regular Army for
immediate service and the comparative unreadiness of the militia,
even in those states which have paid most attention to volunteer
military organization, enforce the same lesson. Would that the
plain teaching of this short war in this regard might sink into the
minds of our people, and convince them of the immense advan-
tages they would derive from a highly-trained, permanent, civil
service in every branch of the public administration !

Another lesson of these pregnant months relates to a principle
which underlies our form of government, yet is often seen but

A. A. A. 8. VOL. XLVn 38



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594 ADDRKS8 BT

dimly by portions of our people. 1 refer to the principle tbat the
Government of the United States should do nothing which any
other visible agency — state, city, town, corporation, or private
individual — can do as well. This seems a strange principle to be
enforced by the action of our Government in time of war, since
the Government has a monopoly of that hideous activity; but
this war has brought out in a very striking way the fact that, when
it comes to the pinch, the source of victory is in the personal ini-
tiative of each individual commander and private soldier or sailor.
When all preparation is made, when all appliances have been per-
fected and brought together, in the particular thicket or mined strait



Online LibraryNew Jersey Historical SocietyProceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society → online text (page 66 of 73)