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YEAR-BOOK OF FACTS IN SCIENCE AND ART,
MOST IMPORTANT DISCOVERIES AND IMPROVEMENTS
MECHANICS, USEFUL ARTS, NATURAL PHILOSOPHY, CHEMISTRY,
A LIST OF RECENT SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS; A CLASSIFIED LIST OF
THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE DURING THE YEAR 1853, ETC.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1854,
BY GOULD AND LINCOLN,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.
G. C. RAND, Printer, 3 Cornhill, Boston.
NOTES BY THE EDITOR
PROGRESS OF SCIENCE IN 1853.
The fifth annual meeting, and seventh regular session of the American Association for the Promotion of Science, was held at Cleveland, Ohio, commencing Thursday, July 28, 1853. A fair number of members and strangers were in attendance, representing principally the southern and western sections of the country. From New England and the Northern States comparatively few were present. The President, elected at the Albany meeting, in 1851, was Prof. Benjamin Peirce, of Harvard University.
Among the papers presented, those in the Departments of Physics and Mathematics were much the most numerous, and were of high merit. In Chemistry and Geology, there were few contributions. The number of papers presented in the several departments was as follows. Physics, Mathematics, Astronomy and Meteorology, 40; Geology, Chemistry and Physical Geography, 12; Zoology and Botany, 12; Miscellaneous, 13.
A Committee for revising the Constitution of the Association was appointed, consisting of Prof. Bache, Dr. J. Lawrence Smith, Dr. Le Conte, of Georgia; Dr. Gibbs, of New York; Dr. B. A. Gould, of Cambridge; Prof. W. B. Rogers; Prof. J. D. Dana, New Haven; Dr. J. Leidy, Philadelphia; Prof. Haldeman, and Dr. A. A. Gould, Boston.
Resolutions were adopted reducing the Annual Assessment from $3 to $1, and requiring that the Proceedings should be furnished to members at cost; or free of expense, when the Proceedings are published by the public liberality of the city where the meeting may be held. The Secretary was
authorized to forward copies of the Proceedings to the learned societies of Europe and the United States. The whole number of members at present belonging to the Association, is upwards of 600.
The Association adjourned on Tuesday, the 2d of August, to meet in Washington, on the last Wednesday of April, 1854. The following officers were elected for the ensuing year. Prof. Jas. D. Dana, of New Haven, President; Prof. J. Lovering, of Cambridge, General Secretary; Prof. J. Lawrence Smith, Permanent Secretary; Dr. Elwyn, of Philadelphia. Treasurer. Prof. S. F. Baird, Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, who for the past three years has so ably managed the affairs of the Association, declined a re-election to the office of Secretary. The following gentlemen were appointed to report on the following topics at the ensuing meeting. Prof. Henry, "On our knowledge of the laws of Atmospheric Electricity;" Prof. Jas. Hall, "On the recent additions to our knowledge of the Paleozoic Rocks;" Prof. H. L. Smith, " On Micro-Chemistry;" Dr. Wolcott Gibbs, "On the recent progress of Organic Chemis try;" Dr. B. A. Gould, "On the progress and development of the Electrochronographical method of Observation;" Prof. Leidy, "On the remains of Extinct Mammalia and Reptilia of North America;" Prof. B. Peirce, "On the present state of the Theory of the Planetary Perturbations;" Dr. Burnett, "On the recent advances in Anatomy and Physiology;" Prof. Agassiz, "On the history of our knowledge of Alternation of Generation in Animals;" Prof. J. D. Dana, "On the Geographical Distribution of the Lower Animals." It was also voted that at the Washington meeting of the Association, a general session be devoted to the consideration of the expediency of a change in the present standards of weights and measures in the United States.
The twenty-third annual meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, was held at Hull, September 7th, Prof. William Hopkins in the Chair. The attendance was less numerous than usual, and no communications of especial interest or novelty were presented. The Committee on the establishment of an Observatory and telescope of large optical power in the Southern Hemisphere, reported through their chairman, Lord Rosse, that an application had been made to the Government, and that the necessary funds would most probably be granted. A recommendation of the Association, that in the event of a survey of the Gulf Stream being undertaken, provision should be made for investigating its Zoology and Botany, has been communicated to the Admiralty, and favorably received. A proposition from Dr. Bache, Director of the Coast Survey of the United States, for a joint survey of the Gulf Stream by the United States and Great Britain, addressed to the President of the British Association since the Belfast meeting, has been forwarded to the hydro