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WITH ILLUSTRA TIONS
FREDERICK WARNED AND CO.,
BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
NEW YORK: SCRIBNER, WELFORD, AND ARMSTRONG,
tHOME TEACHINGS IN SCIENCE:-
JOHN RAYNOR 1
THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN 17
THE THERMOMETER 36
THE WINDMILL 48
THE BROKEN PUMP 65
NOTHING WASTED 76
THE BAROMETER 83
THE LOCK 95
THE SECONDS CLOCK .103
THE EIGHT-DAY CLOCK 120
THE ELECTRIC TELEGRAPH . 129
MAKING TELEGRAPHS 147
APPARENT COURSE OF THE SUN 159
UNCLE JOHN'S ADVENTURES AND TRAVELS:-
SWEDEN AND LAPLAND 160
UNCLE JOHN IN CANADA 173
,, ,, THE CAPE 186
,, ,, SHIPWRECK 206
,, ,, ICELAND 230
AN EXCURSION TO THE NOE 253
KENSINGTON GARDENS 274
BEARS IN THE ZOOLOGICAL GARDENS 296
HOME TEACHINGS IN SCIENCE.
Sricntifftc ":nouiti1l uisc for the 1rrscrbation of Life.
" PAPA," said Richard Bourne one evening, closing
"Pepper's Cyclopedic Science," "have you ever known
a boy who was able to make his knowledge of science of
great use to other people ? "
Yes," replied his father, "I have known one very re-
markable instance of a lad using his scientific knowledge
for the benefit of his fellow-creatures."
Oh, do tell me about it," said Richard, eagerly.
During the summer holidays, when I was quite a boy,
I had a young friend (a schoolfellow) staying with me
and my younger brother Edward. His name was John
Rayner, and he was then fourteen, two years older than
myself. I was much attached to him, not only from his
JOHN RA YNER.
being good-natured and obliging, but because, with the
same love of reading as myself, he was far more cheerful
and lively, and always seemed to be able to tell us every-
thing at the very moment that it was wanted. Whether
in our games, or in our school studies, he was generally
appealed to by the boys. How he obtained so much
information, I do not remember that we ever troubled
ourselves to inquire; but my father, who liked John
exceedingly, said it was from his constant habit of obser-
vation. Certainly, many things were observed and re-
membered by John, which other boys had not taken the
least notice of, though enjoying the very same oppor-
tunities. Well, during the midsummer holidays that I
was speaking of, my mother and father were unexpectedly
obliged to leave home, to see a sick relation who lived at
some distance. The evening before their return, we three
boys occupied ourselves in assisting our old gardener to
put the garden in order. The garden sloped down to a
broad river, which joined the sea at a few miles' distance.
While the gardener was arranging some flower-pots on
a stand on the grass-plot, and John and Edward were
watering the flower-beds, I was sweeping the turf near the
water's side. Suddenly I observed, at a little distance,
something that I could not well make out, floating down
the river. I called to the gardener, to ask him what he
thought it could be.
"' Oh, it is nothing but a dead pig,' answered the gar-
dener, as he sauntered towards me.
"' Are you sure of that ? I exclaimed, for I thought,
as it drew nearer, that it looked like a child.
"' I do not think it is a pig,' said John Rayner, who
had joined us. 'I am sure it is not: it is a boy !' And
7OHN RA YIVER.
in a moment, to our great surprise, he flung off his jacket,
and threw himself into the river."
Oh, papa! exclaimed Richard, what did you and
your brother Edward do ? "
"Neither of us knew what we were about," replied
Mr. Bourne. "Edward exclaimed in terror, 'He will be
drowned! he will be drowned! he will be drowned!' and
placed his hand before his eyes. I would have dashed
after the brave fellow, but the gardener, who knew I
could not swim, held me back. He called out to John
not to fear, but to keep well up against the tide; this last
advice was very necessary, for the current was strong,
and John found himself drifting in the direction of the
mouth of the river. Fortunately, he was a good swimmer,
and his courage never left him. He swam with all his
strength towards the floating body, and seizing it by the
hair with one hand. with the other he directed his course
back to the shore. The gardener, Edward, and I watched
him anxiously, and the moment he came within reach,
assisted him to land, and in laying the body on the grass-
Was the body quite lifeless, papa ?" said Richard,
"We all thought so at the time; all, at least, except
John. My brother Edward recognized the poor little
fellow at once, as the son of a washerwoman that lived
on the common. He had seen him playing at marbles
but the day before, and he therefore felt more shocked
than any of us. He burst into tears as he exclaimed,
'Poor, poor woman, she will never see her boy again!'
"I remember how much we were astonished when John
replied in a hurried tone, 'She may see him again, if we
O7HN RA YNER.
use the right means to recover him. Let us lose no
time. Edward, run quickly for a doctor, while we carry
him into the house; and as you pass the kitchen, tell
Susan to get a bed warmed directly.' You may be sure
we lost no time in obeying him.
"' We had better hold the poor boy up by the heels,'
said the gardener, 'to let the water that he has swallowed
"'No, no, no!' exclaimed John; 'by doing so, you
will kill him, if he is not already dead. We must handle
him as gently as possible. Run for the shutter of the
tool-house, and we will place him upon it.' When we
had done so, and the body had been carried into the house,
Susan and the gardener urged John to place it near the
kitchen fire, saying that, as the body was as cold as a
piece of marble, there could be no better plan than to
place it as near to the fire as possible. After a little
persuasion, however, they yielded to John's entreaty, and
the body was carefully rubbed dry, and placed on a mat-
tress on its right side, between hot blankets. I should
tell you that, while I was fetching the shutter, John had
wiped the body gently with a handkerchief to remove as
much of the water as he could at the time.
"There were no wet clothes to be removed, for the
boy had evidently been bathing, and had most probably
got out of his depth while amusing himself in the water.
After the body had been laid in bed, John bound the head
with flannel, and placed it high on the pillows. He then
begged Susan to rub the body all over with hot flannels,
which the gardener heated from time to time. I was told
to fill four common bottles with hot water. These bottles,
wrapped in flannel, were placed under the armpits and
7OHNV RA YNER.
at the feet. John then tried the effect of snuff and
hartshorn, to create sneezing, and threw cold water into
the boy's face; but all without effect. He next took the
kitchen bellows, and having carefully blown out all the
dust that had collected within them, directed me to close
the mouth and one nostril, while he gently blew into the
other nostril from the mouth of the bellows. When he
saw the chest appear to rise as if filled with air, he put
aside the bellows, and pressed the stomach upwards to
force the air out. He repeated this process fifteen or
twenty times in a minute, to imitate natural breathing.
"In the midst of his exertions, many of the poorer
neighbours assembled, and made their way into the room.
They expressed great sorrow for the sudden death of the
child, and warm sympathy for the unfortunate parent.
Not one of them, however, could offer us the least as-
sistance, because they were quite ignorant that any means
could restore a person apparently drowned. They watched
us with curiosity and displeasure, and began to mutter
among themselves that they should not like a son of
theirs to be so treated, dead or alive. At last one woman
declared 'that all that nonsense would never bring the
dead back to life.' "
And did you turn the people out of the room, papa? "
said Richard. I am sure I would have done so."
"We did not think much about them at first," replied
Mr. Bourne; we were too much engaged in our occu-
pation. But when John found that they crowded near
the bed, and impeded the fresh air, which is absolutely
necessary to assist the recovery of a drowned person, he
insisted upon their leaving the room, and as he spoke
firmly, although gently, they gave way. All this time
O7HN RA YNER.
the windows and doors were left wide open. At last
Edward arrived, but the doctor was not with him. He
was absent from home when Edward called, and a mes-
senger was sent for him. Edward was anxious to be of
service, but he could do little else than heat the flannels,
or fill fresh bottles with hot water. We could not induce
John to allow any of us to inflate the lungs. An hour
and a half had now passed since the boy had been taken
from the water, and still no signs of life appeared. The
gardener and Susan would have given up all further
exertions as useless, and they urged John to think of his
own health, assuring him that from standing so long in
his wet clothes, he would certainly be ill, while he could
no longer do any good. John, however, resolutely de-
clared that he would not cease his attempts to restore the
boy to life till the doctor should pronounce them to be
useless; but to protect himself from the chill of his wet
clothes, he asked Edward to fetch some wine or brandy
and water, and to hold the glass for him while he drank
it, as he could not disengage his hands. I need not say
that Edward obeyed his directions. The time seemed very
long, particularly to Edward, who was not employed so
much as the rest of us. He kept on the watch for John's
orders, gazing alternately on the pale face of the ap-
parently dead boy, and then straining his eyes from the
open window, to catch the first sight of the doctor.
Another half-hour passed, and at the end of that time,
to the inexpressible delight of us all, the boy opened his
eyes, and uttered a faint sigh."
"Oh mydear papa," said Richard," what did Johnsay?"
"He made no exclamation whatever, but he clasped
his hands with exceeding joy. As for the rest of us, the
701IN RA YNER.
surprise was so great, that I am ashamed to say we were
quite bewildered: we ran backwards and forwards, en-
treating John to tell us what we were to do next. In a
low voice he told us that the greatest stillness was neces-
sary, but that a teaspoonful of warm water might be
given him. This the boy swallowed, and seeing that he
was able to do so, John told us that now we might give
a small quantity of brandy and water. After a few spoon-
fuls had been poured down the boy's throat, he opened
his eyes again, and seemed to smile on his preserver."
"But, papa," said Richard, where did John Rayner
learn the proper means to recover a drowned person ?"
"He was very fond of practical science, and had once
read a book which explained, on scientific principles, how
an apparently dead person might be restored to life. Soon
afterwards he met with the' Rules of the Humane Society
for restoring persons apparently drowned.' He compared
them with what he had read about cases of suspended
animation, and thus, no doubt, impressed them on his
memory. Knowing the reasons for everything the rules
enjoined, he was not likely to make any fatal mistake,
which he might possibly have done if he had only remem-
bered them. But to return to our story:
"After William had swallowed the brandy and water,
and had taken a little thin gruel, he became able to speak
a few words; but John begged him not to exert himself.
At length the doctor arrived, but not to see a lifeless
body. The patient was breathing softly and freely, and
there could be but little doubt of his recovery. When
the doctor heard all that had been done by John, who,
he saw, was a mere lad, he grasped his hand with eager-
ness, and tears fell from his eyes as he expressed, in a low
J-OHN RA YNER.
but energetic tone, the sincere admiration which he felt
for John's conduct. To the doctor's observations on his
own flushed cheek and feverish pulse, John could hardly
answer. While he was exerting himself, he felt no illness,
and indeed he had not thought of himself. But now that
he heard that William was out of all danger, and saw
him breathing freely, his own knees began to tremble, his
head became dizzy, and he felt exceedingly ill.
"' My dear fellow,' said the doctor, 'you must go to
bed. If you forget yourself, we must take care of you.'
"' Will he need me ?' said John, motioning towards
"' Not in the least,' answered the doctor; 'I will give
all necessary directions, and I am sure your friend and
these good people will take care to follow them. Little
more is requisite than rest, together with slight nourish-
ments at intervals.'
John said no more, but allowed us to assist him to
bed. The next morning, at his own earnest desire, we
removed Williahi to his mother's cottage, and there he
soon became as well as ever again. John Rayner's
recovery was by no means so rapid. On the return of
my parents the next day, they found him seriously ill. I
cannot describe to you my anxiety during the first week
of his illness. I loved my friend far more than ever.
While he remained in this state, I could not absent my-
self from him. INo other pursuit seemed to enter my
head, except that of nursing and attending on him. My
mother nursed him exactly as if he had been her own
son, and the doctor seemed never weary of his attentions.
At last, to our great joy, the fever abated, and all dan-
gerous symptoms ceased. I shall never forget the meeting
JOHN RA YNER.
between him and William Jackson. The little grateful
boy had daily applied for the doctor's permission to see
his preserver, and when he stood for the first time by his
side, he could not speak-he could only shed tears, and
kiss John's pale thin hands. Mrs. Jackson's warm ex-
pressions would have overcome John, who when in health
was easily touched by kindness; but my mother requested
her to remember that even pleasure might bring back the
fever. 'Then whnt must I do if I may not tell him what
I feel said the grateful woman; 'I have nothing to give
him. Oh! I never wished for riches so much as I do
now, that I might reward him as he deserves.'
'But I do not want to be rewarded, Mrs. Jackson,' I
remember John answered; all the riches in the world
could not make me so happy as I am at this moment;
they could not give me the dear kind friends that are
now around me, nor your boy's happy smile. No, my
good Mrs. Jackson, you need not wish to be rich for me.'
"William entreated my mother so earnestly to be
allowed to assist in nursing John, that she consented that
he should spend the hours between school at our house;
and from that day, until John was well enough to be re-
moved to his friends, who lived at a considerable distance,
William assisted us in waiting on him. John recovered
his health sufficiently to join me at school a few weeks
after the holidays were over, and we became still more
attached to one another. His habits of observation in-
creased as he grew older, and he has had many oppor-
tunities of employing them to the benefit both of others
and himself. Before he was two-and-twenty, he was
engaged to explore parts of India, to make surveys of
the country, and drawings and descriptions of its natural
O7HN RA YNER.
history. Since that time he has twice visited England,
and I hope he will soon return to reside here. Then my
boy will know my excellent friend, and I have no doubt
will love him also."
Oh, I am sure I shall," replied Richard, earnestly;
" and I shall like to hear all his adventures. What a
fine fellow he must be !'
He is, indeed. I hope you will profit by his example."
I will try," said Richard, modestly. Thank you,
papa, for telling me the story. I see by it that all kinds
of knowledge are useful even for boys; so I shall try to
understand and remember all I read; then, some day I
may be as useful as he was."
THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.*
ONs morning two loud raps at Mr. Harmer's door
announced that the postman had brought a letter. The
servant put it into Mr. Harmer's hand, and said the
postage was thirteen-pence. Mr. Harmer paid the money,
but soon observed that the name was "Mr. Frederick
Harmer, junior." "Fred," said he, here is a letter for
you, therefore you must pay the thirteen-pence."
"Thirteen-pence! exclaimed Fred, "what a deal of
money to pay for a letter from a school-fellow! "
Well," said his father, "if you do not like to pay the
postage, let me keep the letter, and you keep your money."
Where does it come from ? said Fred; it must
have travelled a long way to cost so much."
"It has come from Manchester," said his father, one
hundred and eighty-six miles from London, for which they
charge eleven-pence, and two-pence more is charged for
bringing it from London to our house."
Manchester-Manchester," said Fred, trying to recol-
lect; I have no school-fellow who lives at Manchester.
This paper and the other scientific articles in which the same
boys are introduced were written by the late Professor Cowper,
very many years ago, before the introduction of the penny postage,
and when, in the present sense of the term, there was only one
railway in the country; but nothing has occurred in the progress
of science, to cast doubt on the correctness of Mr. Cowper's facts
and clear explanations.
18 THE FIRST RAIL lWA Y TRAIN.
Oh! perhaps it is from Uncle Alfred! there is the thirteen-
pence, papa." And then Fred broke the seal in an instant,
saw his uncle's name at the bottom of the page, and read
with glistening eyes the following letter:
"" As business will detain me some time in Man-
chester and Liverpool, I shall feel much pleasure if your
either will allow you to spend a few weeks with me; I
can then show you some of the manufactories, and we
will take a trip in the coach drawn by a steam-engine on
the railway. My friend Mr. Lincoln will take care of
.ou on the journey down, and I will take you back.
Write me an answer by return of post: you must also
write to my friend Mr. Lincoln, and tell him you will
meet him at the coach-office.
Your affectionate Uncle,
"Dear papa, how very kind of uncle Alfred! May I
write that you will permit me to go ? His father gave
'.ie consent on condition that Fred would write down in
a memorandum-book an account of the different things
aimt interested him during his excursion, and his own
thoughts on all that he saw and heard; and Fred, quite
delighted, prepared to write the letter.
"Oh!" said he, "how glad I am I can have such a
letter for thirteen-pence; it seems such a little money
now, for bringing a letter one hundred and eighty-six
miles in one day."
His father told him that the mail coach to Manchester
employed more than one hundred and eighty horses.
THE FIRST RAIL WA Y TRAIN
Fred set off at the appointed time, and the weather
being fine, he rode outside the coach. Mr. Lincoln had
some business at Derby; their journey, therefore, led
them through St. Albans, Dunstable, Northampton,
Leicester, Derby, Cromford, Matlock, Bakewell, Chapel-
en-le-Frith; and in due time he arrived at Manchester,
where his uncle received him very kindly.
Fred's Letter to his Father.
"DEAR PAPA, Manchester.
How glad I am that you allowed me to accept
Uncle Alfred's invitation! I have only been four days
from home, and I am sure my sheet of paper will not be
half large enough to tell you all I have seen. Our journey
from Derby, where we slept, to this place, was so beau-
tiful, that I wished for you, and mamma, and George, a
hundred times, to enjoy it with me. Mr. Lincoln told
me he generally travelled that road to Manchester on
account of its great beauty. I never saw real rocks
before, although I have often read about them. One
called the High Tor, at Matlock, is a noble rock, three
or four hundred feet high, and there is a river running
at the foot of it. The rock seems just as if it had been
broken from top to bottom. In some places you see
long slanting lines, as if one part of the rock had sunk
down. But I cannot write anything more of our journey,
because I wish to tell you about the steam-carriages and
Yesterday Uncle Alfred took me to the railroad, and
he showed me all the carriages and the steam-engine;
and we saw a Train (as they call six or seven carriages
20 THE FIRST RAIL WA Y TRAIN.
r .-.1I1' ,
set off. They started
very slowly, and pre-
sently went along
faster than our coach
did when the horses
galloped. We saw a
train come in, and
they stopped them so
gently, that I was
quite astonished; and
there was not one
passenger that looked
frightened; they all
seemed pleased that
they had travelled so
fast; then the steam-
engine was unfast-
e wld from the train,
and the engineman
moved it about one
hundred yards, till it
came just under a
pipe that filled it with
water. As soon as the
engine came back,
and was hooked to
the train again, my
uncle and I got into
one of the open car-
riages; he fixed upon
an open one in order
THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.
that we might see everything as well as possible. It was
not long before the steam-engine began to pull very gently
all the six carriages with one hundred and twenty people
in them; and then we went faster, faster, faster, oh, so
fast! I wish, dear papa, you had been with us,-the
horses galloping with the coach seem like nothing to it.
What a wonderful invention the steam-engine is, and
what a clever thought, to make an iron road for the
wheels to run on; but how much time and labour it
must all have cost! At one place they have made the
road over a great black swampy place five miles long, by
putting down many thousand loads of gravel. At another
place they have built a great high bridge, called the
Sankey Viaduct, over the Sankey River; and canal barges,
with high masts and sails, go under it. At another place
-hey have cut through a hill called Olive Mount; this
hill is all stone, but not a hard grey stone like the High
Tor at Matlock, but reddish, and looks something like
that which grindstones are made of. All the rock that
they cleared out they threw into a valley, and there made
a great sloping embankment, at the top of which the
railroad runs. We were only one hour and a quarter
going thirty-two miles! There is a mail coach at the
end of the train of carriages, which carries the letters
between Manchester and Liverpool.
"Uncle Alfred has been very kind; he has explained
to me the steam-engine, and I have written down in my
book all I remember; and I think I can explain it even
so that George may understand it. Uncle Alfred is not
offended if I do not understand him immediately, and
therefore I do not mind asking him questions. I never
can understand the explanation of a person who looks as
22 THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.
though he thought that I was stupid all the time I am
"I wish I could draw like Uncle Alfred. When he
sketches a machine for me, he makes me understand it
quite clearly; so that I do not feel afraid that I shall
not understand a thing even if it does seem difficult at
first. I could not help laughing when Uncle Alfred said
a steam-engine was something like a squirt; but it is
indeed, papa, as I will show you when I come home, for
I have got it down in my book.
"Your affectionate Son,
Fred stayed six weeks with his uncle, and during his
visit, saw many of the manufactories. He went over a
cotton mill, a weaving factory, a calico printer's, an en-
gineer's factory, a coal-pit, an iron foundry, the docks
at Liverpool, and the Menai Bridge at Bangor. He
wrote several letters to his father; but the more he put
down in his book, the less time he had for long letters.
This was his last to his father:
My visit to Manchester is now nearly at an end,
and I do not know whether to be glad or sorry. I am a
little sorry to lose seeing any more of the wonders of
machinery, but I feel very, very glad, I shall have so
much to tell you all. I now see the great use of putting
things down in a book, although at first I thought it
would be something like a task; I am sure I could not
have remembered a quarter of what I have seen, and now
I have only to look in my book, and it tells it me all
THE FIRST RAIL A Y TRAIN. 23
over again. We are to return to London this day week,
and Uncle Alfred intends to spend a few days with you
He was intending to take me to see a printing machine,
but he said you could take me to see the printing machine
in London, and that he should like to go with us; so my
pleasure is not at an end yet.
Your affectionate Son,
"Uncle Alfred having concluded his business at Man-
chester and Liverpool, he and Fred returned to London.
They set off in a coach called the Telegraph, at five in
the morning. The first part of the journey Fred found
himself very cold, having left his warm bed so early; yet
he felt very cheerful at the thought of going one hundred
and eighty-six miles in one day, and at the end of that
day seeing his dear parents.
"Uncle," said Fred, "I do not think I should like to
get up every morning before five. Do those boys and
girls we saw going into the factory just when we set off,
go there every morning at five o'clock ? "
No; they are probably only going for a few mornings,
to make up time lost in repairing the steam-engine.
Some years ago, however, children younger than you
occasionally worked in a factory from five in the morning
until eleven at night, and for many weeks together."
"What! exclaimed Fred, "as long as we are travel
ling from Manchester to London! Oh, how tired they
must have been."
"Yes," said his uncle; "many poor children were so
little cared for by their masters and parents that many
of them became cripples for life. A law has therefore
24 THE FIRST RAILWAY Y TRAIN.
been passed, to prevent, if possible, the children from
being overworked. Do not think, Fred, however, that
all masters of factories are inhuman. There are good
men and bad men in every class. Mr. Lincoln pointed
out to you, I think, the large cotton mills at Derby, be-
longing to Messrs. Strutt."
"Yes," said Fred; "and the mills looked so white
and clean, that I quite longed to go over them."
"Well, great attention is paid to the comfort of the
work-people in those mills. Messrs. Strutt have built
a large school-room for the children. They take care
that the children shall learn something else beside spin-
It seems quite silly, I think, uncle," said Fred, "for
masters and work-people not to try to make each other
comfortable; for the master cannot get money without
the help of the workman, and the workman cannot earn
wages unless he finds somebody to employ him. They
ought to do their best to please one another."'
The sun now shone out warm and bright, and Fred
enjoyed the view of the country, the rapid motion of the
Telegraph coach, and the expedition with which the horses
were changed. In short, Fred had become quite a traveller.
As they met the various coaches coming along from
London, the Dart, the Tally-ho, the Courier, and others,
the passengers began talking about the names of coaches,
and as they gave their different opinions, Uncle Alfred
asked Fred which name he liked best.
I like the name of this coach best," said Fred: the
Courier is a good name for a coach, because a courier
carries news and goes quickly, but the telegraph carries
news most quickly of all."
THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.
The long rows of brilliant gas-lights at length appeared
in sight, and in another half-hour the stage coach stopped
at Mr. Harmer's door. The parlour blinds were quickly
drawn aside, and the street door as quickly opened, while
half a dozen voices welcomed Fred and Uncle." One
kind hand seized a cloak, another a hat, while a third
drew the travellers towards the cheerful fire-side. In a
few minutes Fred and his uncle were seated in the midst
of a circle of affectionate and inquisitive friends, who were
all eager for answers to their several questions.
The next day Mr. and Mrs. Harmer and George were
desirous to see Fred's memorandum-book. The drawings
had been made by his uncle, but Fred had written the
various accounts in his own way.
- "I hope you will begin from the very beginning," said
George: "I should like to hear about your journey to
Manchester; for in your first letter you did not tell us
much about it."
"Well," said Fred, "I will do my best to please you:
here is my little book, which I kept in my pocket during
the journey, and while staying at Manchester. I think
I had better read it myself, mamma, because the pencil-
marks are unluckily often rubbed, and I suppose I shall
make out the meaning best." Fred accordingly began
reading the following extracts from his memorandum-
September the 6th, I set off with Mr. Lincoln in a
new coach from the Belle Sauvage, to spend some time
with my uncle at Manchester. The coach was made a
great deal lower than most of the other coaches that I
have seen; and Mr. Lincoln said it was not so liable to
upset, and therefore it might go very quickly with safety.
26 THE FIRST RAILWAY Y TRAIN.
Everything about travelling seems to be done quickly.
The coachman gets on the box quickly; they change the
four horses very quickly; and if a passenger walks slowly
up to the coach, the coachman says, 'Now, sir, if you
please,' to make him walk quickly. I did not suppose a
few minutes could be of such consequence, until Mr.
Lincoln told me, they changed horses twenty times be-
tween London and Manchester, and then asked me, 'if
they waste three minutes at each change, how much will
that be at the end of the journey ?' It would be a whole
hour. Travelling must make people think a good deal of
"I heard the coachman, when we stopped at an inn,
tell a man to give the near wheeler a little water. I asked
Mr. Lincoln why they called the horse that was farthest
off from the coachman the near horse, and he told me
that the horse on the left is the nearest to a postillion,
because he rides upon it, and the horse on the right is
the farthest off from the postillion.
I think it is very amusing to hear the different people
talking outside the coach. One of our companions had
sailed with Captain Parry, and he told us many entertain-
ing anecdotes of the Esquimaux. A gentleman who sat
next to Mr. Lincoln was a Frenchman, who could not
speak a word of English. He was quite delighted when
Mr. Lincoln repeated to him in French the traveller's
amusing accounts. How much more obliging some people
are than others in travelling! Some take as much room
as they can, and speak rough and short; others, like Mr.
Lincoln, seem to wish everybody to be as comfortable as
they are themselves.
At one part of our journey, the horses became rather
THE FIRST RAILTWA Y TRATN.
restive. One of them had pranced about and frightened
the others, and then they all galloped so fast that I be-
came frightened. The French gentleman, who was not
used to quick travelling in his own country, was quite as
frightened as I was, and wished to jump off the coach,
but the coachman assured him there was no danger; and
Mr. Lincoln told him, whenever the horses ran away, it
was always safer to hold fast on the coach; and that if
he jumped off, he would certainly be thrown violently
against the ground, and be hurt very much. An Irish
gentleman sat by my side, who had amused us much by
the funny stories he narrated; but when the horses began
galloping so furiously, he looked quite as much frightened
as the Frenchman. Suddenly he said to me,' I'11 trouble
ye, young gentleman, for a piece of chalk!'
"' Oh, sir,' I exclaimed, 'I cannot think of chalk now,
when we may all be over in a minute. What can you
want chalk for?'
"' Just exactly for that very reason, my honey,' he
answered; 'for I want to mark my own legs, that I may
know them again, when we are all upset and kilt entirely '
"This answer set us all off laughing together, and by
the time we had done laughing the coachman had got
the horses into a trot instead of a gallop, of which I was
When we were crossing a little river called the Trent,
the coachman told us, that one side of the river was
Leicestershire, and the other side Derbyshire; and Mr.
Lincoln, who has travelled in foreign countries, said, that
sometimes a small stream would divide two great king-
doms. When he travelled from France into Italy, he
went over a bridge, and one-half of the bridge was France,
28 THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.
and the other half Italy. In time of war, how disagree-
able it must be, and how foolish it seems, for people who
live on each side of a little river, to fight with one another.
"We slept at Derby, and the next day went to see the
beautiful hospital, called the Infirmary. It looks like a
gentleman's house in the midst of a park: the trees, the
gravel walks, and the flowers are all kept in the highest
order. When the sick people are getting better, how
much they must enjoy such pleasant grounds! The
inside of the infirmary is so clean that you would scarcely
think anybody was ill there. We went all over it. In
the cellar we saw a large stove, and a little brick room
all round it, full of holes to let the air go through against
the stove, and so get warmed. From the top of this little
brick room, there were brick flues, about as big as a
common chimney, that went to every part of the in-
firmary, to convey the warm air to the rooms and passages.
"In the laundry, there was actually a little steam-
engine! Who would have thought that sick people
could be made more comfortable by a steam-engine ? and
yet they are, for it works a washing-machine, a mangle,
and a pump. There is a large closet, that is warmed by
hot air, into which they slide the clothes-horse when they
have been washing; and so the sick people always have
plenty of clean linen. I asked who it was that had con-
trived so many things for them; and Mr. Lincoln said, it
was Mr. Strutt, one of the proprietors of the great cotton
mills, near Derby. When we left Derby, we passed
Messrs. Strutt's mills, but Mr. Lincoln could not spare
the time to take me over them. At Cromford, we passed
Sir Richard Arkwright's mills, and Mr. Lincoln told me
he was the first person who spun cotton by machinery.
THE FIRST RAILWAY Y TRAIN.
We arrived at Manchester at night, and Uncle Alfred
met me at the coach-office. The next day he took me
to several parts of Manchester. What abusy place it is!
In almost every manufactory we passed there was a steam-
engine, which made me wish to know something about
steam-engines; they seem so very useful; and Uncle
Alfred, when we got home in the evening, made me the
drawings in my book, and explained them to me.
"There are two kinds of steam-engine: one is called
the Condensing Engine, because the steam is somehow
condensed in it by means of cold water; and the other is
called the High Pressure Engine, because the steam presses
with very high power in it. Uncle Alfred says the High
Pressure engine is easiest to understand, and he began
to explain it to me, by telling me it was something like a
squirt. Directly he said so, I began to hope that I should
understand it, for every boy knows what a squirt is. I
have often mended the plug, or piston, as they call it in
the steam-engine, by putting some tow round it. The
round part of the squirt they
call the cylinder, and the
handlepart they call thepiston- ;~
rod. I find I must learn the IPison-rod.
names of things when they are
different from those I have Cylinder.
been used to, or else I can-
not tell what people are talk- Piston.
"Well, now, suppose the
piston of the squirt made to
slip up and down very easily,
and the hole at the bottom of the squirt made large with
30 THE FIRST RAILWA Y TRAIN.
a gimlet, and then the point of the squirt put through
a hole in a cork, and the cork put into a
tin bottle with some water in it; if you
warm this over the fire, the steam will
push the piston up to the top. We must
however, take it off the fire directly the
piston reaches the top, or else it would
burst, because the steam cannot get out.
If we could only let the steam off that
had pushed the piston up, and then let
some steam into the upper part of the
cylinder above the piston, we could push the piston down
S I "FiG.e1.
THE FIRST RAILRWA Y TRAIN.
again; and then the squirt and the bottle would be a
"In a steam-engine, the piston-rod slides through a
hole at the top of the cylinder at (A), in which some tow
is put to make it fit close enough to prevent the steam
getting by. There is a pipe (T), which I shall call the
top pipe, and a pipe (B), the bottom pipe, and a pipe (i),
through which the steam goes into the cylinder, and a
pipe (o) (which passes on one side of T), through which
the steam goes out of the cylinder; and these four pipes
are all joined together in the shape of a cross. In the
middle of the cross at (c) there is a cock. This cock is
called the four-way cock, because it
opens and shuts all the four pipes. ^^'
I thought this would be very diffi-
cult to understand, but my uncle's
drawings have explained it perfectly
"This is the shape of the plug of | Plug.
the cock; that is, the part which I otch.
turns. It has two deep notches
file in it opposite to one another,
32 THE FIRST RAILWAY Y TRAIN.
leaving a solid division in the middle, and a section of it
would look like this:-
Now, when the division stands thus \ like (Fig. 1.) the
steam goes to the top of the cylinder, and pushes the
piston down; and when the division stands thus / as in
(Fig. 2.) then the steam goes to the bottom of the cylinder
and pushes the piston up. While the fresh steam is
going through the right-hand notch of the cock into the
cylinder, the steam that has been used is going through
the left-hand notch out of the cylinder into the open air.
The steam-engine itself turns the cock by a little rod
from the top of the piston.
"And now we see how we can push the piston up and
down. The next thing is to see how this up and down
motion can turn a wheel round. When I first saw how
this was done, it put me in
mind of a knife-grinder's
Fly-wheel, wheel, for the treadle and
iron connecting-rod go up
r-a' and down, and pull the
iron connecting. wheel round by the crooked
S rod. part called the crank.
"This is the way it is
Treadle. done in the steam-engine.
Acrossthe top of the piston-
rod is fastened a piece of iron called the T piece, because
it makes the form of a T with the piston-rod. The T
piece moves up and down between guides, to make it
THE FIRST RAILWAY TRAIN.
always move in a straight line with the piston-rod. At
each end of the T piece is hung a connecting-rod, and
the other ends of the two connecting-rods are joined to
two cranks on the same spindle, on which a heavy wheel
END VIEW. piee.
oad Wheel. Fly-wheel.
Locomotive Engine. Fixed Engine.
called the fly-wheel is fixed, so that as the piston-rod,
and T piece, and connecting-rods go up and down, they
pull the cranks and the fly-wheel round.
Travelling, or Locomotive Engine. Fixed Engine.
"The cranks are generally fixed at the ends of the
spindle, and outside the fly-wheel, and then they look more
like handles. When an engine is used for machinery, it
is mounted upon brickwork, and turns a fly-wheel; but
if used for going on the road, it is mounted on four road-
THE FIRST RAIL A Y TRAIN.
wheels, and the connecting-rod turns two of the road-
Uncle Alfred says, the use of the fly-wheel is not
only to make the engine work with regularity, but also
to continue the motion, when the arm of the crank is in
a line with the connecting-rod; for when the piston is at
the top or bottom of the cylinder, the arm of the crank
and the connecting-rod are in a straight line with each
other; and in these positions, which are called the dead-
voints, the connecting-rod can no more turn the crank
than I could turn a grindstone by standing on the handle;
but when a heavy thing like a grindstone is turned
round, if we take our hands off the handle, the grind-
stone will turn a little way by itself. In like manner the
heavy fly-wheel easily turns the crank at the dead-points,
that is, where the connecting-rod has no power to turn it.
"As a heavy fly-wheel will continue to move a little
way by itself after we have left off turning it, so a heavy
carriage will continue to move a little way on a railroad
after we have left off pushing it, and therefore the travel-
ling engine, when once put in motion, easily turns the
crank past the dead-points. But if the engine at the
end of the journey were to be accidentally stopped just
at either of the dead-points, then it would be very incon-
venient to put it in motion again, for the engine would
have to be pushed along till the crank had passed the
To avoid this inconvenience, all the steam-engines on
the railroad have tro cylinders, which are generally placed
in a horizontal position, instead of being placed upright
as in the above drawings:* one cylinder works the right-
See drawings at page 33.
THE FIRST RAILWA Y TRAIN.
hand wheel, and the other the left-hand wheel; but both
wheels are firmly fixed on the same spindle or axletree,
and therefore one wheel cannot turn without the other.
The cranks are put at what my uncle calls 'right angles'
to each other. This is a right angle L, and this is the
position of the two cranks; and so when one crank is in
a line with the connecting-rod (which is the position in
which it has little power to turn the wheels), the other
crank is in the strongest position for turning the wheels.
"The cylinders are generally placed thus:
(c) is the cylinder, (T) the T piece sliding between two
guides (a). (c a) the connecting-rod jointed to the T
piece at one end, and to the crank (K) at the other end.
"There are a great many ways of making engines; but
my uncle says it is best for me to understand an engine
of a simple construction now, and that by and by I shall
be able to understand the most complicated engine."
"You have never told us, Fred," said George, who
invented this wonderful travelling steam-engine. Did
not Uncle Alfred tell you ? "
Yes, he said," replied Fred, "that the great, if not
the only inventor of the locomotive engine, and of the
whole plan of railways, was George Stephenson. My
uncle told me some very interesting stories about him
when he was a boy, and what difficulties he had overcome
through life, which I am sure you would like to hear."
Just as Fred said this, which much excited George's
curiosity to know more of George Stephenson, some
school-fellows called to see Fred on his return home, and
to ask the two brothers to go on some expedition with
them. Fred put down the book to go out to welcome
them; but George, before he joined his friends, peeped
into the book, and said in a joyful tone,
There are some more amusing things in Fred's book,
papa: I can see cotton-mills, iron-foundries, and coal-
"Do not look at it now," said Fred, as he left the
room. I will read some more another time."
"How very hot it is !" said Frederick Harmer, as he
and his brother entered the parlour-on their return from
school. "I think it is the hottest day we have had this
summer. I do not suppose it can be hotter in the East
"It does not appear to me to be very hot," said his
mother; "I feel cool and comfortable."
"Ah !" said Fred, "you have been quietly reading at
this open window, while George and I have been walking
in the hot sun. No wonder, mamma, that you are cooler
than we are. Papa, do you not think the day remarkably
"I feel the day very warm, certainly," said Mr. Harmer,
"but not so oppressive as I did last Monday. I may be
mistaken, however, in the real heat of the day, for last
Monday I rode a great deal, and to-day I have been mostly
engaged in the house."
"Well, if people feel so differently," exclaimed Fred,
"I do not see how we can ever determine whether one
day is hotter than another. Is there no way, papa, by
which we can know for certain ?"
Try and think if either of you can find any means,"
replied his father.
I should look at the ditches;" answered George, be-
cause they are dried up in very hot weather; and this
makes me think that Fred and I are right about the heat
of the day, for I observed as we walked along that they
were all dried up."
That is because there has been no rain lately," replied
Mr. Harmer. One night's rain might fill all the ditches,
and yet the next day might be hotter than any of the
"Well, papa," said Frederick, "the old water-butt in
the garden has shrunk so much that the hoops are all fall-
ing off. Does not that show how hot the weather is ?"
No; it only tells us that the weather has been dry
lately. If you roll the butt into the pond, the water will
soon make the wood swell, although the heat may con-
tinue to be as great as ever."
That explains why the servants put the washing-tubs
in the pond before using them," said George. The wood
swells and closes up the joints of the planks, so that the
tub can hold water."
"Yes, papa," said Fred; "I see plainly it is the dry-
ness, and not the heat, which makes the wood shrink.
For if it were the heat, the hot water, which is put into
the tubs when the clothes are washed, would certainly
open the joints by making the wood shrink."
"Very true," said Mr. Harmer. "We must think of
some other plan, then, to determine the heat of the
weather. Do you know of anything that alters in size,
shrinking or swelling, by heat or cold?"
"Water, 1 know, swells by heat," observed Fred.
I know that too," said George, because the water
in our glue-pot boiled over yesterday."
"Yes," said Mr. Harmer, "the place that was large
enough for the water when cold was too small to hold the
same water when hot. All other liquids as well as water,
and also air and the metals, swell or expand by heat.
The poker is a little longer and thicker when it is hot
than when it is cold. If you happen to have an iron ring,
the link of a chain, or the top of a large key, that will just
go over the knob of the kitchen poker, you may readily
satisfy yourselves of this. Warm the knob between the
bars of the kitchen grate for a short time, and then try
to put the ring over it. You will find that the knob has
expanded, and that it will not pass through the ring. You
may try another way. Suppose the ring is so nearly the
size of the knob of the poker that you can very nearly,
but not quite, put it over the knob while both are cold.
If you heat the ring, it will expand, and may then be
easily slipped over the knob."
"How very curious!" said Fred.
"But, papa, I do not understand how we are to find
out the difference of heat on different days by merely
knowing that iron swells by heat."
No; nor did I say that iron was used for that pur-
THE THER IOMIETER.
pose, Fred," replied Mr. Harmer: "fluids are much more
suitable. You know what a fluid is, George ?"
"Yes, papa; water and milk are fluids."
"And so also are oil, wine, and brandy," said Mr.
Harmer, and there are several others. Fred, bring me
a small phial, a cork, and a long quill, and as you pass the
store-closet, fill the phial up to the brim with brandy."
When these things were brought into the parlour, Mr.
Harmer cut off the two ends of the
quill, so as to make a long tube open
at both ends, and boring a hole in the
cork, he fitted the quill tightly into it. Hot
He then pushed the cork well into the after
neck of the bottle, and by so doing
forced part of the brandy into the quill.
This being done, he made a mark on the
quill even with the surface of the brandy.
" Now, Fred," said he, "take the phial C
in your hand, and observe the brandy." 7- Eand
Fred did so, and he had scarcely held shine
the phial a few moments when he ex- Parlour
claimed, "Papa, the brandy is moving!
look, it is rising quite high in the quill! i
I might hold a piece of iron in my hand -, a
for ever, and there would never be any
difference in its size; but the brandy ''
expanded almost directly that I graspec Ilil" .
the phial. See, now it is standing still.' fl'IIll .*,'
Yes; I will make another mark on
the quill with my pencil," said Mr. Harmer. "Now
place the phial on the table, Fred."
Will the brandy come down again, papa, now that
Fred has taken his hand away ?" asked George.
40 THE THERMOMETER.
Look, George, and you may judge for yourself," said
George looked at the brandy in the quill as attentively
as his brother Fred; and they both saw that, after some
little time, it fell to the first mark Mr. Harmer had made.
I see, papa," said Fred, when he observed that the
brandy remained stationary at the first mark, the upper
pencil-mark shows the heat of my hand, and the lower
mark the heat of the parlour. I should like to know
whether the brandy would sink lower in the cellar. The
cellar is much cooler than this room. George, will you
come with me ? and bring a lighted candle with you and
a pencil; then we can try." George ran for a candle, fol-
lowed by his brother; and when, after a short time, they
returned, George exclaimed with delight, Papa, it does
capitally! Look! the mark is lower than the parlour
mark, and we felt it quite cold in the cellar after this
Fred seemed as much pleased as his brother, though
he looked thoughtful.
The phial was then taken into the sunshine, and the
brandy rose higher and higher, but not so high as the
mark which was made when the phial was held in the
hand. When Fred showed his father the mark that he
had made on the quill, which Mr. Harmer said might be
called summer-heat mark, he said he should like to plunge
the phial into hot water.
"Then you must make your tube longer," said Mr.
Harmer. Cut two new quills neatly, and fit the three
together. I advise you to dip the ends into gum-water,
that your tube may not leak."
"When this was done, the phial was put into a basin of
hot water, and the brandy quickly rose into the topmost
of the three quills.
"How curious! how beautiful!" exclaimed both the
boys; "and how useful! continued Fred, "for it shows
the increase of heat exactly. If we had had this little
contrivance during the last week, papa, we could have
been certain about the heat of the weather. We could
have watched the brandy each day, and made different
marks for each day's heat. I think this contrivance of the
quills, the phial, and the brandy, might be called a heat-
Instruments something like this," said Mr. Harmer,
"but more exact, and with a fluid more suitable for the
purpose, are, in fact, used as heat-measurers. They are
called by a name that signifies these very
words, thermo-meters; 'thermo' meaning heat,
and 'meter,' measure."
Oh! how I wish we had one," said Fred.
"Do tell us, papa, how thermometers are
"The thermometers in general use," replied
Mr. Harmer, "are little glass tubes, with a
bulb at one end, nearly filled with quicksilver,
and sometimes with spirits of wine, which is
a liquid something like brandy; and this tube
is fitted into a slip of wood or brass, on which
lines are marked called degrees."
"How do they get the quicksilver into the
tube, papa ?" said George; "I thought quick-
silver was a metal, and are not all metals solid
like iron ? You said just now thatfluids showed the dif-
ference of heat much better than solid substances."
Yes, so I did, George," replied his father; "but
quicksilver, although a metal, is in our climate a fluid.
Near the North Pole it becomes as hard as any other
metal, and can be beaten with a hammer, and drawn out
without breaking. But in the temperate and hot coun-
tries it can be poured out like water, although it is nearly
fourteen times as heavy."
"Well, that is curious!" exclaimed George.
The quicksilver thermometer is most generally used,"
continued Mr. Harmer, because quicksilver will bear a
greater amount of heat before it boils than spirits of
Papa," said George, I should like you to tell us how
thermometers are made from the very beginning."
"Well then, George, I will try to explain how they
are made, as you say, from the very 1..* .'"'** ,,." replied
Mr. Harmer. "The workman takes a small glass tube,
open at both ends, and melts one end of it in the flame
of a lamp till the hole is closed; then he blows at the
other end of the tube. The air cannot escape, and there-
fore stretches the closed end, which is quite soft, into a
small bulb. He next holds the tube with the bulb over
the flame, but taking care that the heat is not strong
enough to melt the glass. By so doing he drives out
nearly the whole of 'the air, because as each particle of
air stretches or expands by the heat, it rises in the tube,
and escapes at the open end. Having nearly freed the
tube from air, he reverses it, putting the open end of it
into a cup of quicksilver; and now, Fred, what do you
think must happen?"
I should think, papa, that the quicksilver must mount
in the glass tube as the tube cools, because the pressure
of the air outside the tube all over the quicksilver in the
cup must press the quicksilver up the tube."
Yes, papa, I think Fred must be right," said George,
"because it is just like the water rising in the pump-
barrel, is it not ? As the glass tube has no air in it, the
quicksilver creeps in to fill the empty place."
"You are both quite right," said Mr. Harmer, laughing,
"though you almost speak of the quicksilver, George, as
if it were alive. The tube is not yet, however, sufficiently
deprived of air. The bulb is, therefore, again held over the
flame till the quicksilver boils, and then the vapour or
steam of the quicksilver drives out all the air. Before the
quicksilver cools, the workman holds the upper or open
end of the tube in the flame; and when melted, by giving
it a slight twist, he closes the hole. The quicksilver would
expand even if there were air in the tube, but not so
readily, because it would have to overcome the resistance
of the air, and therefore it has been contrived to draw all
the air out. The marks are made in this way: The glass
tube is first placed in pounded ice, and the place where
the quicksilver sinks to is marked by a slight scratch, and
called the freezing-point. The tube is next plunged into
boiling water, and another mark is made called the boiling-
point. When the tube is fitted into the frame, this boil-
ing-point is marked 212, and the freezing-point 32. The
space between these points is divided into 180 equal
parts, called degrees; and below the freezing-point 32
divisions are marked of the same size as those above that
point. And now the thermometer is complete, and a most
valuable instrument it is; for, instead of guessing how
hot or how cold anything is, we are able to tell exactly."
"I am sure, papa," exclaimed Fred, "that people who
have such an instrument as that need not dispute whether
one day is hotter than another. I wish you could show
us a thermometer."
"I should like to show you one very much, boys," re-
plied Mr. Harmer. "I dare say our neighbour, Mr.
Hervey, has a thermometer. Go to him, Fred, with my
compliments, and beg him to be so kind as to lend me one
for a short time. I think he will have no objection to
trust you with it, for you are known to be careful when
things are lent to you."
Oh, yes, papa," said they, both at once; "I am sure
we will take great care not to injure it." And they ran
to ask Mr. Hervey to lend their father his thermometer.
Mr. Hervey willingly lent the thermometer, and his
son William came with Frederick.
It was an excellent thermometer, and marked not only
on one side according to Fahrenheit's method (the usual
way of dividing thermometers in England), but on the
other side according to the French method. Mr. Hervey
had written down many interesting remarks of his own:
the heat of summer in the East Indies and in England;
the cold of winter in Iceland and in Canada; the points
at which spirits boil and oil congeals; and many other
useful facts. The boys were much pleased to examine the
thermometer, and George was now quite convinced that
a metal could be fluid even without heating it over a fire,
for he saw the quicksilver roll up and down the tube when
he moved it as easily as water.
You find this thermometer very useful, I dare say,"
said Mr. Harmer to young Hervey.
Yes, sir, we often use it," replied William. Every
time we brew it is frequently plunged into the water, that
"f. signifies Fahrenheit's, or the English scale. ~F C
i. signifies the Centigrade, or French scale.
2120. Water boils. 5 '(5-_4
1900. Brandy boils. i;-gs
1740. Spirits of Wine boil.
127. Tallow melts. =
11A. Summer in East Indies. 1Io =a -
SVery hot in England.
common heat in East Indies
'*50. Summer heat in England. J
550. Temperate in England. 6e i
5o. Common heat of spring-water. S, z-jo
43. Olive oil begins to stiffen.
320. Water freezes. | ^
200. Very cold in England. E-
50. Winter in Canada.
In Iceland, the cold is sometimes 240 below 0.
At 40 below 0, quicksilver freezes.
the malt may be put in at the right time. Were the heat
too little or too great, the beer would be spoilt. Then
my mother, who suffers so much from ill health, has often
a warm bath, and the doctor orders the exact heat that is
suitable for her. We could not tell when we had made
the bath the right heat without the thermometer. But
will not you show me your thermometer, Fred ? I should
like to see it."
The boys showed William their father's contrivance,
and they amused themselves by adding fresh lines to it.
At last George said, Papa, do you know where quick-
silver is found ? "
"The largest mines are in Spain; but quicksilver, or
mercury as it is also called, is moreover found in Germany,
Istria, and elsewhere. The mines in Istria were discovered
in a curious way about three hundred years ago. A great
many coopers lived in that part of the country; and one
of the men, on leaving his work in the evening, placed a
new tub under a dropping spring, to try if the tub leaked.
When he came in the morning, he found his tub so heavy
that he could not lift it. HIe was very much surprised,
and began to examine the shining and heavy fluid which
was at the bottom of the tub. It was quicksilver. The
circumstance was soon talked about, and a company was
formed to search farther and discover the mine from which
this quicksilver had flowed. In some parts of the rock,
the metal was found to run in small streams. In other
parts it was mixed with sulphur or other ores, and it was
then a solid substance, but easily separated by heat."
"I hope, papa," said Fred, "that the man who acci-
dentally discovered the quicksilver had some present made
"Yes; he was liberally paid," replied Mr. Harmer.
"The present depth of the mine is above eight hundred
feet, and it yields a hundred tons of quicksilver every
"I am glad the man was paid," said George; "for,
though it cost him no trouble to find the quicksilver
spring, I do not think it would have been fair to have
given him nothing out of all the money that was gained
by the mine, when he was the very first to find it."
"How very cold it must be in those countries where
quicksilver freezes!" said Fred; "that is not even marked
on the thermometer. I suppose, papa, there is no metal
that expands so much with a small quantity of heat as
Certainly not," replied Mr. Harmer. "We know
that a great heat is necessary materially to increase the
size of other metals. A piece of iron, measuring a foot
in length while cold, becomes only one-eighth of an inch
longer when heated red hot. And lead, which is much
sooner melted than iron, still requires a considerable heat
to expand it. Have you ever seen a wheelwright put the
iron hoop or tire round a coach wheel ? He first makes
the hoop too small to go on when cold, and then places
the hoop in the fire, by which it is sufficiently expanded
to slip on the wheel easily. But even for this small
enlargement great heat is required."
"Ah, I see, papa," said Fred; "and then as the hoop
cools it must contract and bind the wheel firmly to-
Casks are bound in the same manner, Fred," con-
tinued Mr. Harmer, "and masts of ships. So you see
that the knowledge of the expansion and contraction of
metals is useful in many trades. Now, Fred, take in the
thermometer to Mr. Hervey, and thank him for the use
of it, and perhaps you can persuade your young friend to
spend the afternoon with you."
To this proposal William readily agreed, and after the
thermometer had been carefully returned, the boys left
the parlour to amuse themselves in the garden and tool-
IT was the custom of Mr. Harmer to take his family a
few miles from town in the month of May, to spend the
summer in the country. This change was always enjoyed
by the young people; for much as they liked the various
pleasures of London, yet with the return of spring came
the thoughts of their country occupations,-hay-making,
cricket matches, pony-riding, &c.
It was about a month after Frederick and George's
arrival in the village of Sanderstead, near Croydon, that
they were trying one of their best kites. The kite was
made of thin tissue-paper, and from its extreme lightness,
and the slenderness of its string, it mounted beautifully,
ascending steadily higher and higher, until the boys were
surprised at the small speck that it formed against the
"How hard it pulls! exclaimed George; "I scarcely
think the string will hold long. I will let no more out,
George had hardly made this resolution when the string
broke about half-way up, and the wind carried the kite
towards a mill, a field or two off.
To the great vexation of the boys, the kite pitched and
fluttered over the mill till the string got entangled in the
sails. The kite was whisked round and round by the sails
before they could even call out to the miller to help them;
when, however, they had succeeded in making themselves
heard, to their great surprise the mill was stopped in a
moment. The miller then took the kite off the sail, and
gave it to the boys. The paper was sadly torn, but, as
the frame was still whole, Fred thought it would be worth
while to repair the kite; and he thanked the miller for
stopping the mill.
I wish, sir," said George, you would be so good as
to tell us how you could stop those great sails so easily.
I thought it would be a very difficult thing, because I have
heard that when the wind is high it blows so violently
against the sails that they will knock down any one who
comes in their way."
So they will, my boy," replied the miller, "and I ad-
vise you always to be very careful not to get in their way.
Stopping the mill, however, is an easy matter; but, as I
am very busy to-day, I cannot well afford the time to
explain to you how it is done."
Fred and George were sorry to hear this, and they were
just going away, when a little girl, who had been standing
near the miller, trying several times to gain his attention,
exclaimed, "Pray, dear father, do not send them away
I am sure they are the boys who were so good-natured to
Upon hearing his little daughter's remark, the miller
asked the boys their names.
"Frederick and George Harmer," replied Fred.
"Ah, then," said the miller, "you are the boys who
were kind enough to take care of my little girl in your
front-court the other day, when a horse took fright, and
ran away from a chaise in the road that passes your house.
I am very much obliged to you for your kindness to her.
To-day is certainly, as I said, a busy day with me; but one
good turn deserves another, and if you like to see my mill,
and how I stop the sails, I will show you with pleasure."
"Thank you, sir, thank you!" exclaimed both the boys
at once we should like to see the inside of the mill very
The good-natured little girl looked as pleased as Fred
and George, though she did not follow them up the steps
of the mill, but, nodding and smiling, she ran into her
mother's cottage, which was near the mill.
The miller showed the boys every part of the mill, and
they were both so much interested that they would have
stayed much longer if the miller could have spared them
any more of his time.
Some portions of the miller's explanations were diffi-
cult to understand, because, for parts of the machinery,
he used names which the boys were not accustomed to
hear. George also was apt to be rather impatient, and
to think of one thing while the person speaking to him
was explaining another; but they both learned many
things about the structure and management of the mill,
and then they ran home to tell their father what they had
seen and heard.
Papa," exclaimed George, as he entered the parlour,
"you do not know where we have been this morning.
Come, I will give you three guesses."
"Three guesses ?" said Mr. Harmer, looking up from
his book; "a very liberal allowance. Let me see your
hands, George. You have not been to the brick-field,
certainly. I should judge, by their appearance, and from
that white patch on your coat, that you have spent the
morning at the lime-kiln, or at the baker's, or in the wind-
mill. Ah! I think I am near the mark."
Yes, papa, you are right," said Fred; we have been
all over the windmill, and the miller has taken a great
deal of pains to explain everything to us."
"But, Fred," said George, "before you tell papa all
the particulars, just let me tell him two or three things
that I liked very much, and which I think are very curious
indeed. First of all, papa, do you know that those great
sails, which the miller says are forty feet long, can be
stopped directly, by merely pulling a rope ? I could do
it; anybody could do it. Next, there is a tiny windmill
stuck on the roof of the mill, which turns the great sails
towards the wind, whichever way it blows. There is
another thing, also, that is very clever, though the miller
said it was a very simple contrivance. When more corn
is wanted to be put into the hopper to be ground between
the great stones, a little bell rings of itself, and then the
miller knows that the hopper is empty, and he fills it again.
So, papa, the little bell is just as useful as a man standing
by to watch, and to call out, as the hopper becomes empty,
' More corn, miller, more corn.' "
"You must have had a very entertaining morning in-
deed, boys," replied his father; "but I should like to
know how all these things are done, George. Cannot you
explain some part of them to me ? "
"Not very well, papa, I am afraid," said George, half
laughing and half ashamed, because, though I asked the
miller to tell me how the sails were stopped directly I
went into the mill, yet he did not explain it to me till
quite the last thing; and all the time he was talking of
the other parts of the mill, I was saying to myself, I
wonder when he will come to the stopping of the mill ?'
I suppose that prevented me from understanding all he
said to Fred. But, papa, Fred can tell you, I am sure."
Because Fred was so much more attentive, I suppose,
eh, George ? said Mr. Harmer. "Well, Fred, I shall
like to hear all you can remember."
So shall I," said George, "for I was vexed with my-
self afterwards for thinking so much about the stopping
of the sails. After all, I did not see exactly how it was
done, for when we went up the ladder to the very top of
the mill, I was rather afraid of falling, so that I could not
attend much to the explanation."
That was unlucky, indeed, George," said his father.
"I think, papa," said Fred, "that I shall be able to
remember and explain the different parts of the mill much
better if you have a print of the inside of a windmill.
Have you any book about windmills? "
Yes, I think I have," replied Mr. Harmer; "and while
I look for it, Fred, do you put down on a slip of paper
the various things that were done in the mill this morning,
and then we shall see if there is any difference between
your mill and the prints in the book."
While Mr. Harmer was out of the room the boys tried
to remember the different things that they had seen.
Write down the stopping of the sails first," said
No, no," said Fred, we must first of all put down-
"1. The wind blows the sails round.
"2. The sails turn towards the wind, whichever way it
"3. The corn is ground into flour between the two
large heavy stones.
4. The flour is sifted to get the bran from it.
5. The mill can be stopped whenever the miller likes."
"Will you not put down the ringing of that useful
little bell, Fred ?" said George.
"If you wish me to do so," replied Fred; "but that is
only a little contrivance; the five things I have mentioned
are far more important."
When Mr. Harmer returned to the parlour with the vol-
ume he had spoken
of, the boys soon
found out the print
the one they had
been over, and
which was called a
some fancied like-
ness to a smock-
frock. Inthe same
page was a print
of a post-mill, so POST-MILL.
called from the whole mill turning round on a post. The
wheels belonging to the post-mill were thick and clumsy,
because they were made of wood; but in the smock-mill
all the wheels were light and neatly formed, being made
Well, papa," said George, "all the wheels that we
saw this morning were made of iron. I could not help
thinking how well they fitted, and how difficult it must
be to hammer iron wheels into their proper shape. The
mill-maker must be a long time making them."
"No," said his father; "the wheels are not made in
the way you imagine. The mill-maker, or millwright, as
he is called, first makes a neat wooden pattern exactly like
the iron which he is in want of. The ironfounder presses
this pattern into a box of sand, and then carefully removes
it. A mark is thus left in the sand just the form of the
pattern. The ironfounder next pours into the mould a
quantity of melted iron, which fills every part of the
hollowed sand, and thus an iron wheel is cast as easily as
you cast a leaden dump. Now, Fred, let me see your
1. The wind blows the sails round."
Yes," said George, laughing, we all know that, but
Fred is so very exact, papa, is not he? There is one
thing about those sails though that I do not understand:
the wind blows in front of the sails, and yet they go side-
ways. How is that? Do you know, Fred ?"
"I do not think the sails are quite flat," said his brother.
"They slope a little."
"Yes," said his father, "and I
can easily show you how the wind
acts upon them; I will cut this
card into four little sails, and put
a pin through the middle. Now
blow against the sails, George. They do not turn, because
the sails are flat, but when I bend one edge down, so as
to slope from the wind, see what follows."
"The sails turn swiftly round, papa, moving sideways
from the wind, exactly like the real sails of the wind-
"Precisely, George. Well, the second thing you ob-
served in the mill, boys, was that the sails turned towards
the wind, whichever way it blew. How was that contrived,
Oh, that is an excellent contrivance, papa, which, the
miller told me, saves a great deal of trouble. The roof,
or cap of the mill, is separated from the mill itself; the
lower edge merely lies on the top part of the mill (both
being quite round), in the same manner as the lid of a
round box fits on the box itself. The roof supports a great
iron spindle or wind-shaft, as the miller called it; and the
shaft and the roof will all turn round together on the top
of the mill. The vane, which George calls a little wind.
mill, is also fixed to the roof. When the wind blows
against the vane, it makes it turn a pinion. See, George,
here is an exact print of this part of the mill, with half
of the cap removed, so that you can see the inside also.
The pinion marked P turns in a large toothed ring, ?,
56 THE WINDMILL.
which, as you must recollect, the miller said was firmly
fixed to the top of the mill. Now, as the pinion cannot
possibly move the fixed ring, it pulls itself round the
teeth of the ring, drawing with it the roof, the shaft, and
the sails together."
That is certainly a very useful contrivance," said Mr.
Harmer, "and I do not wonder at the miller's saying
that it saved a great deal of labour; for in the old post-
mill, every time the wind changes, the whole mill has to
be turned round on the great post upon which it is built."
Why, how is that done, papa ? said George.
His father pointed to the print of the post-mill, where
a large beam of wood was represented fastened to the
mill at one end, and supported at the other by a large
coach wheel. "When the wind changes," said Mr. Harmer,
"it is necessary to raise the steps a little off the ground,
and to secure them to the great beam; then two men take
hold of the wheel-end of the beam, and by main force
pull the mill round towards the wind."
"What a clumsy plan," exclaimed George. "But, papa,
there is one thing which neither you, nor Fred, nor the
miller has explained. I do not understand how the roof
of the mill can be turned round without breaking the
wheels in the mill."
"I think I know," said Fred; "but, papa, you will
explain it best."
"Are you afraid," said his father, "of a hard word,
George ? "
Oh, no, papa; I do not think any word hard, when
you have made me understand the meaning of it."
Now for the hard word then. Look at this print,
George. The wheel A, on the upright shaft, is concentric
with the lower edge of the room, that is, they have the
"There is nothing difficult in that word, I am sure,
papa, either to understand or to remember," said George.
" The coloured rings in a kite, and in my target, have. the
same centre; and I have often made concentric circles,
without knowing they were called by that name."
Well," said his father, now observe the wheel B on
the wind-shaft, and you will see that
when the cap travels round, the wheel
B will go round the wheel A, and that
their teeth must always work together;
because the wheel B will always be at
the same distance from the centre of '
A. The two wheels can never jam CONCENTRIC CIRCLE.
against one another, nor get away from one another.
I see, I see," said George, eagerly; while the pinion
is travelling round outside on the great fixed ring, and
carrying the cap with it, the wheel B inside the cap travels
in the wheel A on the top of the upright shaft. Now,
Fred, you can go on to grind the corn."
"Oh, I shall not be long about that, George," said
Fred, laughing, "now we can turn the sails to the wind
whichever way it blows; for the great wheel B must not
only turn the wheel A round, but also any other wheel
that is fixed upon the upright shaft. But first of all,
papa, I must tell you about the mill-stones. They are
made of a curious sort of stone, full of small holes, like a
sponge or a piece of bread; and the miller said they came
from France, and were called French burr-stones, and
were better for the purpose than any other stone what-
And the mill-stones, papa, are very large and heavy,"
said George; "for the miller said that one mill-stone would
sometimes weigh nearly twenty thousand pounds."
"I am glad both of you obesrved the mill-stones so
closely," said Mr. Harmer. "A hard, smooth stone would
press the corn together, and not cut it sufficiently; and
a rough, brittle stone would break, and fill the flour with
particles of sand. The burr-stones are not often brought
to this country much larger than a man's hat; a number
of them are therefore carefully cemented together, and
bound with iron hoops, to form one mill-stone. The
method that is employed in France to split the burr-
stones to the requisite thickness, is rather singular.
Circular indentations are made round the blocks, at
proper distances, and then wedges of willow that have
been dried in an oven, are driven into the indentations
with a mallet. When these wedges have been sunk to a
proper depth, they are moistened with water; and, after
a few hours, the several stones that have been marked
out are found to be perfectly separated."
That plan must save a good deal of knocking and ham-
mering, papa," observed Fred; but I suppose it can only
succeed with stones that are porous like the burr-stones.
"There were some spare mill-stones in the mill, papa,
so that we could see that one side of
Each was grooved over just like this.
S .... The stone with the little hole is
fastened down tight, and the stone
.j with the great hole is put over it, but
not so near as to touch. The upper
stone spins round so swiftly, that
you can hardly see it move."
SECTION OF A MILL TURNING TWO SETS OF MILL-STONES.
"Is the little hole in the lower stone to let the flour
through ? said George.
No; I will tell you the use of that hole presently,"
replied his brother. "The upper stone, as it whirls round
over the lower, whirls the flour out from between them
both, into the case that surrounds the mill-stones, and
down a trough fixed to the side of the case. It is neces-
sary to keep the stones a little distance apart, for if they
touched one another they would get very hot indeed."
Ah said George, I put my hand into the flour as
it came out of the mill, and it was quite warm But
how do they keep the stones just the proper distance from
each other, Fred ? "
A strong spindle is put through that small hole in the
lower stone, George, and turns the upper mill-stone. The
lower stone, as I said, always remains fixed in one posi-
tion; but the upper is fastened to the spindle; and so, by
raising or lowering the spindle, you can raise or lower the
upper stone, and thus keep the stones at the proper dis-
But you have not told us now, Fred," said George,
"how the spindle can be raised or lowered."
Gently, gently, George," said Mr. Harmer; "you
scarcely give Fred time to remember which are the best
parts to explain first. I dare say he considered it was
most important to know how the upper mill-stone is
turned, before he explained how it is kept apart from the
lower stone at the necessary distance, by means of the
Yes, papa, I was just going to describe how the upper
mill-stones are turned. The great wheel G on the upright
shaft U turns the wheel W, which is fixed on the spindle
of the mill-stone; and, therefore, as the upper mill-stone
is fixed to the spindle, it must turn round with the spindle
and wheel W. Now, here is the contrivance, George,
for regulating the distance of the stones. You will easily
understand it, because this part of the mill is drawn
separately on a larger scale. The lower end of the spindle
S rests on the beam B, and by turning the screw-nut S N,
o Lower mill stone.
Floor. [ ;,:;
you raise or lower the beam, and the spindle, and the upper
mill-stone which is fixed to it. You were so much pleased,
George, in watching the corn as it ran out of the great
square funnel, called the hopper, into the mill, that you
heard nothing of the miller's explanation about the spindle
"No, I know I did not," replied his brother. "I was
thinking of something else, and listening to that noise,
' Clack, clack, clack.' The corn, papa, ran out of the
hopper into a sort of sloping trough, and there it would
have made a great heap, and then no more could have
come out; but the trough was made to wag backwards
and forwards, and so jog the corn into the large hole in the
upper mill-stone. I know how that was done, papa. One
end of the trough was fixed loosely upon a pin, and the
other was suspended by a leather strap, and leaned against
the square spindle G, which just at this part spread into
four thick rods, forming a kind of cage; and so as the
square spindle turned round, it kept jogging the trough
continually. I think I can also explain the ringing of
the bell just before the hopper got empty, because this
part interested me very much."
I should like to hear you try to do so, my dear boy,"
replied Mr. Harmer, "even if you do not quite succeed.
I have perfectly understood your explanation of the way
in which the corn is shaken into the mill."
First, papa, I must tell you that there is a little arm
of wood hung on a pin on the edge of the hopper, and a
bell fastened to the wooden arm (see section, p. 61, A);
and if the bell and wooden arm were left to themselves, the
arm would fall against the spindle, which, being square,
would, as it turned round, jog the arm backwards and
forwards, and keep the bell always ringing. This would be
of no use, and therefore there is a strap of leather which
prevents this. One end of this strap is fastened to the
arm, and the other end to the opposite side of the hopper.
When the corn is put in, the strap is kept down by the
weight of the corn, and thus the arm is prevented from
falling against the spindle; but when the corn is nearly
run out, the arm falls against the spindle, and then the
bell, being jogged, rings directly."
This contrivance is certainly very simple," observed
Mr. Harmer, "and I agree with you, George, that it is a
very pretty one. I am glad you have recollected some
parts of the mill so well. What is the next thing on
your list, Fred ? The flour is sifted to get the bran from
it.' Do you remember, Fred, how that was done? "
Finest flour. Fine. Coarse. Bran.
"Yes, papa; it was done by a curious sort of sieve.
The sieve was long and round, something like a muff-box,
only larger, and the wire was put round it. In some
parts the wire was fine, and in some parts coarse. A
spindle went through the middle of the sieve with brushes
fastened to it; and so, when the meal was put in, the
brushes were turned round pretty fast, and rubbed the
flour through the sieve, and the bran fell out at the end."
"Now, papa," exclaimed George, "we have come to
the stopping of the mill, and I want to hear about that
particularly, because it is so surprising that these great
sails can be stopped by merely pulling a rope."
Not at all surprising," said Fred, "when you know
the way it is managed. There is a great smooth wooden
wheel, X, on the wind-shaft,
and over it there is a thin
/ curved piece of iron, with
curved blocks of wood fastened
Sto it of the same shape. This
x is called the break, Gr. When
the miller pulls the long rope
R, this rope pulls a wooden
lever L, to which the break is
S fastened; and that, of course,
pulls the break down upon the
wheel. The break rubs so
hard against the wheel, that it
prevents it from turning round.
And the miller can as easily set the mill going again, for
he has only to let go the rope, and the weight W pulls
up the lever L, and lifts the break off the wheel; and
then, if the wind blows, the mill goes again."
THE BROKEN PUMP.
" COME, George, wake up," said Frederick Harmer to
his brother early one fine spring morning; "we must
have a good day's work in our new garden. The ground
is almost as hard as iron, and we had better dig while it
is cool. Don't you hear me; don't you understand ? "
"Yes, I understand," answered George, in so sleepy a
tone that his brother quite laughed at him. The laugh
woke George a little more, and after rubbing his eyes
and gaping a few times, he sprang out of bed, declaring
he should be ready as soon as Fred.
"When the boys were dressed they went into the garden
together. The new piece of ground which their father
had given to them the day before was an additional piece
to their former gardens. Mr. Harmer had now marked
out for their use a large border, twenty-four feet long
and nine broad; for he had observed with pleasure that
the boys had raised many well-grown vegetables and
flowers, and that they generally kept their gardens in
The boys determined to plant this new piece with
vegetables and fruit trees; but before they made any
plan for arranging the various beds and paths, they in-
tended to dig it all over. They began to dig with hearty
THE BROKEN PUMP.
good will, but made very little progress, for the ground
was so hard that they could scarcely force their spades
"This will never do," said Fred, we shall not dig it
up in a week at this rate. We have just two hours to
work before breakfast, and we shall have scarcely any
part dug up to show papa. Let me think, what can we
do ? Oh, I know: we will water it, George, to soften
"I will run to the pump in a minute, and bring the
two watering-pots," said George; "and you had better
fetch the large spade, Fred."
While Fred went to the tool-house,
George ran to the pump, but though
he could move the pump-handle
more easily than usual, no water
came out of the spout, and he re-
turned to his brother, exclaiming,
"How vexatious, Fred! we shall
not be able to dig our garden be-
fore papa comes down to breakfast-
there is no water in the well."
"How do you know there is no water ? asked Fred.
Because I have pumped and pumped till I am tired,
and I cannot bring up any," answered George.
We will go to the well and drop some stones through
the hole in the cover, and then we can easily tell by the
sound whether the well is dry."
The boys picked up some small stones, and went to the
well, which was covered over with a wooden lid and locked
with a padlock. A knot in the wooden lid had fallen out,
and they could easily drop the stones through the hole.
THE BROKEN PUMP.
As they let the stones fall one by one, George was sur-
prised to hear splash, splash, splash."
"It is very odd," said he, "that I could not pump up
water when there is plenty in the well. What can be
the reason, Fred ? "
I should think there must be something wrong with
the pump," said Fred; "we will see if we can find out."
But," said George, "how can we find out what is the
matter, when we know nothing about the different parts
of the pump ? I have never seen the inside, have you ?"
"Yes; I have seen the inside two or three times,"
replied Fred; and one day last week (I think it was the
day you were at my uncle's) papa explained the different
parts of a pump to me, and he allowed me to take out
the bucket, and so I know he will not mind me taking it
out now. Look, George, you can see some parts of the
pump now these two doors are
open. The pump-handle is
fastened to this upright iron
rod by an iron pin, and when I
move the handle up and down,
the pump-rod, as it is called,
goes down and up."
I can see that quite
plainly," said George; "but I .
want to see the bucket you
spoke of, Fred."
Fred took out the pin
which fastened the handle and
the pump-rod together, and drew out the pump-rod. At
one end of it was a round lump of wood, with a piece of
leather nailed round it. In the middle of this lump of
THE BROKEN PUMP.
wood was a round hole, with a little trap door of leather
which opened upwards.
Pump-rod "Do you call this thing a bucket?"
Wood said George; "why, I expected to
/ see you bring a pail out of the
Valve, pump; this is not like a bucket. No
bucket could hold water with a great
hole right through it, Fred."
Leather jiI "I know this bucket is not like
Wood I-- what people usually carry water in,"
replied Fred, but papa told me that
that was the proper name, and I heard the plumbers call
it so. This lump of leather that covers the hole like a
little trap door, papa told me is called a valve."
What is this thick part of the pipe called, Fred, that
I can see in the lower part of the pump ? said George.
That is called the barrel," replied his brother;
"though you see, George, it is more like two quart pots
put one above another than a common barrel, which is
thicker in the middle than at the top and bottom. When
we move the handle of the pump up and down, the bucket
moves up and down inside the barrel, which it fits."
"But I wonder the leather round the bucket does not
make it stick fast," said George, "because, when leather
is wetted, it swells and takes more room."
Yes," said Fred, "I know that; and it is on account
of its swelling when wet that it is so useful. The bucket
is made just to fit the barrel easily, so that when the
leather is wetted it may press softly against the inside of
the barrel; and the water cannot then run down between
the leather and the barrel. But look, this leather is quite
dry, and a part of it is rotted away. I dare say that was
THE BROKEN PUMP.
the reason the pump would not work. This empty place,
where the leather is worn off, must have let all the water
through, and then no doubt the leather got dry, and
would not press properly against the sides of the barrel.
I am almost sure I can mend this bucket with a piece of
an old shoe that you have done wearing, George. I will
run to papa's dressing-room, and ask him if I may try."
Oh, do," said George; and I will find the shoe by
the time you come back."
Mr. Harmer gave the boys leave to try their experi-
ment before he sent for the plumber, and the shoe was
soon found. Fred cut it neatly, and nailed the leather
over the bare part of the bucket. The boys then soaked
the leather round the bucket in a pail of rain-water that
stood in the garden, and ran to the pump with the mended
bucket. Fred placed the pump-rod and bucket inside
the pump, and fastened the pump-rod to the pump-handle
with the iron pin.
Now, George," said he, "work away, my boy."
George began pumping, but he said, The handle does
not move half so easily as it did, Fred."
"So much the better," answered Fred; "we have
made it fit better then ; hurrah! here comes the water,
George; pop the water-pot under the spout."
"How lucky it was, Fred," said George, "that you
remembered what papa told you last week; we have a
good hour now before breakfast."
The boys carried water-pot after water-pot of water
to their garden, moistening about one-third of the new
ground. Then they began digging again, and were de-
lighted to find how easily they dug up the ground which
was so very hard till they watered it. After they had
THE BROKEN PUMP.
been digging some time, George said to his brother,
"Though you have told me about some parts of the
pump, Fred, I do not in the least understand how that
bucket brings up the water. Did papa tell you? "
Yes, he did," replied Fred: I am not sure, however,
that I can explain it well to you. But when we go in
to breakfast I will show you the little drawings of the
pump papa made for me, and I will try to make you
understand the matter. Do you think, George, you can
recollect the names of the parts of the pump you saw ? "
"Oh, yes," said George. "The handle is fastened to
the pump-rod. At the lower part of the pump-rod is
the bucket, which moves up and down inside the barrel.
At the bottom of the barrel is a leaden pipe, about as
thick as a rolling-pin, which goes from the barrel into the
well; then there is something like a square leaden box
at the top of the barrel which holds a good deal of water,
and the spout sticks out from the box."
That box is called a cistern," said Fred; but there
is another part of the pump that I have not told you
about, which is very useful indeed. It is called the
sucker, and is fixed quite tight at the bottom of the
barrel, and never moves. It is a lump of wood with a
hole through it as in the bucket, and a leather trap door,
sr valve, which opens upwards just like the valve of the
"I am sorry you cannot show me that, Fred," said
George, but I suppose, as it is fixed inside the barrel,
you cannot take it out. Well, when we go in you must
show me the drawings of the different parts, but I like
seeing the real things best."
So do I," said Fred.
THE BROKEN PUMPiP.
"When the boys went in to breakfast, they were much
pleased to tell their father of the success of their experi-
ment. They had worked hard, and had dug up a third
part of their new ground. After breakfast they both
begged their father to explain the pump to them, be-
cause," said Fred, "I am not sure, papa, that I shall be
able to make George understand."
"Try, Fred," said his father. "If you recollect well,
I have no doubt you will, and as I have an engagement
with a friend, I cannot stay now."
When Mr. Harmer had left them, Fred went to his
little desk, and showed George the drawings. "Look,"
said he, "you must first understand that these drawings
are called sections of the different parts of the pump."
"You need not explain that word section," replied
George, "for I know what it means. Anything cut
right through the middle is called a section. If I cut
this stick from top to bottom, I make a sec-
tion; and if I cut this loaf of bread through, o
I make a section."
Well then," said Fred, papa has made Pump-rod
a drawing of the inside of the pump and its
different parts, that we might understand it,
just as if a real section were made from top 0
"There are the pump-rod, bucket, and '-'
sucker. The sucker is fixed at the bottom sucker r i
of the barrel. The bucket with the rod
moves, as I explained to you in the garden, up and down
in the barrel, when the pump is worked. Those little
black things are the valves, which open upward. To
make me see more distinctly the difference between the
THE BROKEN PUMP.
drawing of a whole thing, and of its section, papa made
this next little drawing. This is a view of the sucker,
not a section of it.
When the water is above the valve, you
know, the valve must keep close. When the
water is below the valve, the valve must be
forced open. When papa explained to me the reason of
the water rising in the pump, the most difficult thing to
understand was what papa called the 'pressure of the
air.' The air presses on everything......"
"Why," said George, do you think that difficult to
understand, Fred ? I know the air presses against the
sails of our boat and pushes it along, and against the
sails of the windmill too. I do not think that is difficult
to understand or remember."
"When papa," said Fred, "was talking to me about
the pressure of the air, I thought of the windmill, and
the sails of the ships too; but still that is not the proper
explanation of the pressure of the air, for the air presses
on everything, not only when the wind blows, but when
the air is quite still."
"What," asked George, "when the day is quite hot
and sultry, and we feel no wind at all ?"
"Yes, always," said Fred; "and you can be sure of
that, George, if you run quickly on a hot day, for you
will feel the air like a slight wind on your face, because
you press against the air in running. I tell you what I
think the pressure of the air is something like, George.
Water, you know, is heavy; and in the great sea, in the
rivers and in the ponds, it presses on the stones, the fish,
and the weeds, whether there is a storm or whether there
is a calm. It does not signify in the least whether the
THE BROKEN PUMP.
wind blow or not, the water presses with the same weight
on the different things in the water."
But," said George, I know that water is heavy, for
a pail of water weighs a good deal; but does air weigh
anything ? "
Yes, it does weigh something, but not nearly so much
as water. If we had a pipe thirty feet high filled with
water, and another pipe of the same size that was thirty
miles high filled with nothing but air, the water in one
pipe, and the air in the other, would weigh nearly alike."
But does the air go up so very far above the clouds ? "
"Yes," answered Fred, papa says it goes up even
higher than thirty miles, but beyond that height it has
scarcely any weight; it is sufficiently near the truth,
therefore, to say that there is thirty miles of air always
pressing on the surface of the well, and upon all other
objects around us. If we put a pipe into the water, and
get the air out of the inside of the pipe, the air that is
pressing so heavily outside the pipe on the surface of the
water in the well, will force the water up the pipe."
Well," said George, "I think I can understand now
how it is. I draw the water from a cup into my mouth
through a straw; I have often done that till I have quite
emptied the cup. I somehow draw the air out of the
straw, and the air outside the straw presses on the sur-
face of the water in the cup, and pushes it into the straw.
But how does the pump draw the air out of the pipe? "
Why, first of all, suppose, George, the pipe has no
water in it," said Fred, "and suppose the bucket at the
lower part of the barrel, as in the drawing opposite. Well,
when you lift the bucket, some of the air in the pipe
comes through the valve in the sucker into the barrel.
THE BROKEN PUMP.
As soon as you stop lifting the bucket up, the sucker-valve
closes and prevents the air going back again into the pipe.
When you push the bucket down, the air that you have
just got into the barrel pushes open
(o the valve in the bucket, and goes
through the valve into the cistern,
j| and then through the spout into the
stern open air. As soon as the bucket has
got to the bottom of the barrel, the
Barrel bucket-valve closes, and when you
Buket again lift the bucket, some more air
Sucker comes from the pipe through the
sucker-valve into the barrel; and so
goinjinto you keep on till you have taken all
he ell. the air out of the pipe going into
"And then," said George, hastily, I know what hap-
pens; for while the air is being pumped out of the pipe,
the outside air keeps pressing on the surface of the water
in the well, and pushing it into the empty pipe; so that,
I suppose, by the time the air is all out of the pipe, the
pipe is full of water, and then the water goes through
the valves exactly in the same way as the air did."
Yes, you are quite right, George," said Fred; "look
at papa's drawings and you will not forget it. The little
arrows are placed on the side, George, to show which way
the bucket is moving. See, in the next drawing the arrow
is pointed downwards. When we lift the handle of the
pump, we push the bucket down, and the valves are in
the position shown. In the other drawing, the arrow is
pointed upwards. When we pull the handle down, the
bucket is lifted up, and the valves are then as shown."
THE BROKEN PUMP.
"I am almost glad, Fred," said George, "that we
could not pump up the water when we first tried this
morning. I never thought about the inside of a pump be-
fore. It is very curious
and very entertaining. I
wonder, Fred, if you and
I could make a small
real pump; I should like
Sit so very much."
"Yes; I think we
could," said Fred. "We
could make a small pond
well lined with clay for
our well, and lay a pipe
from it to our pump. I
have thought of some-
thing else for our garden."
"What is that ?" said George.
"A fountain to fall in tiny showers over our plants,
like the fountains in the the Zoological Gardens. Only
ours will be very small compared to those."
Oh! that would be beautiful," exclaimed George;
"but, Fred, how can you manage that ?"
"I must ask papa first to lend me the book of plates
that contains drawings of pumps, fountains, and all kinds
of things, for I am not sure I know the best way yet;
but, George, we will talk of that by and by, for, look, it
is near ten o'clock, and we must be off to school, and we
have plenty of work before us for the present, without
thinking of fountains. Stop one moment while I put
the drawings into my desk, George. Now I am ready."
And the two boys started together to school.
" G-EoGE," said Mr. Harmer, early one spring morning,
"I am going to breakfast with my friend Mr. Franklin,
who lives near the London Docks: should you like to go
with me ?"
Oh, yes, papa, I should like it exceedingly," replied
"Then put on your hat and gloves as quickly as you
can, for we must be at Mr. Franklin's before eight, and
it is now twenty minutes to seven."
George quickly obeyed, for he liked walking with his
father, because he was always sure to see and hear some-
thing amusing. He was soon ready, and he and his father
started on their walk.
It was a fine clear morning, and the sky appeared of a
deep blue over the thousand chimneys of busy London.
At this early hour few fires had been lighted, and there
was little smoke to dim the bright sky.
"How pleasant and fresh it feels, papa," exclaimed
George; "I am glad I have come with you. But the
streets do not look so amusing as in the middle of the
day. A great many of the shops are still closed, and
those that are opened do not look half so gay, with the
windows nearly empty, and the shopmen dusting and
sweeping. I do not think," continued George, laughing,
"that I should like to be employed getting shops ready
for customers. Oh! I see something I should like to do.
Look, papa, at that boy in the stationer's shop: he has
a kind of watering-pot in his hand, with a hole at the
bottom, through which the water trickles. See, the boy
is making a figure of eight on the ground. Do stop one
moment, papa; I should like to do that very much."
Mr. Harmer stopped at George's request to watch the
Papa, what is he doing that for ? "
"To lay the dust in the shop, just as the water-carts
are used for watering the roads."
Papa," said George Harmer, what is that foolish
woman looking in the dust-heap for ? I am sure she can
find nothing worth having there."
"Do not be quite so sure, George," replied his father.
"There are many things that are made use of from the
dust and sweepings of the various houses in London.
That industrious woman finds it, no doubt, well worth
her while to search over these heaps."
Why, papa, she is only picking up little pieces of cord
that can be of no use to any one, and she is even stuffing
those bits of rag and paper into her apron. What can
she do with them? "
She will probably take the cord, pieces of rag, and
paper to a rag-merchant, who will in his turn sell them
to a paper-maker," replied Mr. Harmer. The cord will
be used for making millboards and brown paper. Rag,
I thought you knew, George, is employed for making
"Yes, I know, papa, that writing-paper is made of rags,
after they have been well soaked and beaten in great vats
till they are quite a pulp; but I did not know that such
dirty little pieces of rag as those could be of any use."
The paper-makers can turn the worst coloured rags,"
replied Mr. Harmer, "into paper of the most beautiful
white; but the cleanest rags of course require less labour,
and are therefore of greater value."
But what will be the use of the pieces of paper that
the woman picked up ? said George. Can they be
used again in paper-ma.king ? "
Yes, they are occasionally mixed with the rag pulp,
but only for the commoner kinds of paper. Paper that
is made from rag alone is much stronger. But there is
another use for old paper."
What is that, papa ? "
"Many of the toys that your sister plays with, are
made of old paper beaten into a pulp. Toys thus made
are much lighter than those made of wood. They are
made in a mould."
What ? is that poor old cow of Lucy's, that has been
broken in halves, made of paper ?" said George: "it is
"Yes; and the reason that paper toys easily split in
halves is, that they are generally made in two separate
moulds, and the two parts are afterwards joined together.
Such toys are well adapted for very young children, as
the children cannot be hurt by the paper stuff as they
might be by hard wood."
I think I know something else, papa, that is made of
paper," said George. 1 heard mamma tell Ann to bring
up a paper tray the other evening, so I suppose trays
must sometimes be made of paper."
Yes, all the better kinds of trays are made from paper
prepared in the same manner as for toys," replied Mr.
Harmer. "Some manufacturers make small tables of
the same substance. They are beautifully painted, and
highly varnished, and are much admired. The chief
manufactories of paper mndchi, as it is called, are near
Paris, though there are several in this country."
George and his father now walked briskly on for some
time. Presently George begged his father to stop only
for one moment to observe a man diligently searching in
Papa," said he, "I think that man must have lost
something: he is looking about so carefully. Shall we
ask him ? He has picked up something, and put it into
the pocket of his leather apron; what can it be ? There,
now he has found something else. Can you tell what he
is doing, papa ? "
I think I can guess," replied Mr. Harmer. He is
collecting all the horseshoe-nails that he can find. You
may suppose, in a street where so many horses pass and
repass, that many nails may be found."
But, papa," said George, "after they have been
knocked about the street, and the wheels of the carriages
have passed over them, they must be so much bent that
they can be of no use as nails again; can they ? "
No, George," replied his father, "nor are they re-
quired for that purpose. Shoe-nails, from their particular
form, are required to be made of very superior iron, or
they would snap in two. They are square, and thick at
the top, and then become very tapering. The blacksmith
makes them from a piece of iron of the same thickness
throughout, and he hammers it until he has beaten it into
the form he wishes, so that every part of the iron is well
pressed. It is from this circumstance, and from the quality
of the iron which is always employed in making shoe-nails,
that they are so valuable even after they have served their
first purpose. That man is probably collecting the nails
for the gunsmiths to make the barrels of the very best
Oh, papa," said George, do tell me how they can
make gun-barrels of the old nails which I thought were
The nails are placed side by side, with the heads at
the top, about as many as my two hands could grasp, and
bound with a small iron hoop just to keep them together.
They are next heated till they are slightly melted, and
are then violently hammered till they form one mass of
iron. This lump is then again heated, and beaten with a
heavy hammer into one long slip of iron; this slip, like
a long bit of ribbon, is wound round to form a tube, the
edges being made to meet, but not to lap over."
Just, papa, as I could make a tube by winding a slip
df paper round a pencil. If I could gum the edges of
the paper together, and then draw out the pencil, I should,
I suppose, have a model of a gun-barrel. But, papa,"
continued George, how do they manage to make the
edges of the iron stick together? "
"By heating the gun-barrel till the edges of the iron
are slightly melted, and then giving the coil of iron several
smart knocks at the top, which presses the edges together.
This is repeated several times till each part is welded.
The coil of iron is then bored to the size required for the
inside of the gun-barrel, and the outside is turned in a
lathe till the iron is of the proper thickness."
Papa," exclaimed George, what a deal of hammering
a piece of iron must go through before it becomes a gun
Indeed it does, George, and for that very reason gun-
barrels made in this manner are much superior in strength
and durability to the barrels of the common muskets;
but, from requiring more labour to make them, they are
What a noise that dustman makes, papa," said George,
"I can hardly hear you speak. There, he has gone into
that house. I am glad we have got rid of him. I wonder
what he does with his cart-load of rubbish ? "
I dare say that cart-load is worth several shillings,"
observed Mr. Harmer.
Oh, is that possible ? Why, I thought the dustmen
only cleared away the small cinders and ashes, which are
of no use to any one."
"They are of no use for parlour or kitchen fires," said
Mr. Harmer, and therefore some people are glad to get
rid of them; but they are very useful for other purposes,
nevertheless. There are immense heaps of cinders and
ashes at Paddington and Camden Town. When they are
all properly sorted, the larger cinders are bought by
washerwomen for heating their boilers; and they pay as
much as sixpence a bushel for them; that is, about a
third of the price of fresh coals. They are also purchased
by brick-makers for heating the brick-kilns. The smaller
cinders and ashes are mixed with clay for brick-making.
They are extensively used for manure in stiff clayey soils.
But look, George," said Mr. Harmer, there is a man
picking up pieces of broken green glass bottles. No one
would think at first that they could be serviceable."
"Oh, yes, papa, I could find a use for them," replied
George, quickly. "I have seen broken pieces of glass at
the tops of garden walls. I dare say the man is collec-
ting them to be used for that purpose."
He may be doing so," said Mr. Harmer; "but it is
more probable that he is picking up the broken glass to
be pounded for glass-paper."
"Paper cannot surely be made of glass," exclaimed
George with surprise.
"No," said Mr. Harmer, laughing, "but a paper that
is used by the carpenters and cabinet-makers for polish-
ing wood is called glass-paper, from its being covered with
finely-powdered glass, which is fastened to the paper."
Oh, now I understand," said George. "The powdered
glass makes the paper rough."
After passing through many narrow streets, George
and his father came to an open space, where there was a
large heap of rubbish.
Papa," said George, "I dare say some more useful
things will be collected from that heap. But for what
purpose can that man fill his wheelbarrow with old tin
kettles and saucepans ? Do you think he will find any
oae to buy such old worn-out things, papa "
"Yes, very readily," replied Mr. Harmer. "All tin
utensils, as they are called, George, are made of plates of
iron, which have been dipped in melted tin, and thus be-
come covered over with a very thin coating of tin; and
those old saucepans and kettles are valuable only because
they are made of iron.
But here we are," said Mr. Harmer, at Mr. Frank-
lin's door, and I think we shall both enjoy our breakfast
after our long walk."
ONE evening, Mr. Harmer told his sons, Fred and George,
that he intended to take them, the next day, to see Mr.
Green ascend in his balloon. As he expected, the boys
were exceedingly pleased, and both exclaimed earnestly,
"I hope nothing will happen to disappoint us, papa.-I
hope it will be a fine day to-morrow. Do you think it
will be fine, papa ? "
"Yes," said Mr. Harmer; "I did not tell you of my
intention till I was almost sure that it would be fine."
"But, papa, what makes you almost sure that it will
be fine to-morrow ? said George.
"1 can guess," said Fred; "papa has examined the
barometer, and he finds the mercury rising."
"But how can he learn from that the state of the
weather to-morrow ?" continued George. I know
people look at the barometer, to judge, as they say, of the
weather, but I never heard anybody explain how they
could judge of the weather by examining it. Will you
tell me the reason, papa ? "
"Fred," said Mr. Harmer, "can you answer George's
question ? "
Yes, papa, I think I can," said Fred, although it is
a long time since you explained the barometer to me.
The mercury in the barometer rises and falls by the
weight or pressure of the outward air or atmosphere, and
the mercury shows the change in the weight of the air
while the change is going on, and before it can be seen
by us. The glass tube that contains the mercury in the
barometer is closed at the top, so that the air cannot
press at the top of the mercury, but the tube is open at
the bottom, and goes into a little box of mercury, just as
the pipe of the pump goes into the well."
Oh! now I think I understand," said George; "the
air presses upon the mercury in the box, ar d forces the
mercury up the tube, in the same manner as tke air presses
upon the water in the well, and forces the water up the
Exactly so," said his father; and the only difference
is, that mercury being so much heavier than water, the
air cannot support or hold up so long a pipeful of mercury
as it can of water. You recollect I told you, that a pipe
of air about thirty miles high, or the height of the atmo-
sphere, and a pipe of water of the same size, thirtyfeet *
More properly, thirty-four feet of water are equal in weight
to thirty inches of mercury; but we have preferred to say thirty
feet, because the numbers thirty feet, thirty inches, and thirty
miles are more easily remembered.
THE BAROMETER. 85
high, would be of the same weight. Well, a pipe of mer-
cury of the same size, thirty inches high, would weigh
the same as the thirty-mile pipe of air and the thirty-feet
pipe of water.
"The name 'Baro-meter,' means measure of weight.
Now I will show you the different parts of the barometer;
(a) is the glass tube, which, as your
brother told you, is closed at the top 1 -
(b). The lower part of the tube is i
open, and is placed in some mercury, in I
the little wooden box (d). The box is
closed, so that the mercury cannot fall "
out; but the air easily passes into the
box, through the pores of the wood,
and pressing on the surface of the mer- a
cury, forces it up the glass tube. The
air is heavier in fine weather than in
wet weather; and so in fine weather
the air presses the mercury up the glass '
tube, and in wet weather, when the air
is less heavy, the mercury falls."
"But, papa," said George, it seems .'
very strange that the air should weigh
more without the rain than with it:
how can that be ?" Ti
I have never understood how that
could be," said Fred, although I know that the mercury
could not rise, as it does in fine weather, unless the air
were really heavier at that time."
"It is a difficulty to many persons," replied Mr.
Harmer; but I think I can make you both understand
the reason, when I tell you that the air can absorb or
soak up a great deal of water, and yet the air be quite
clear, just as you can dissolve salt in water, and yet the
water remain quite clear. The cup of water with the
salt in it must certainly weigh more with the salt than
Certainly, papa," said Fred; but still when the air
is very dry and clear, one can hardly believe there is any
moisture in it."
The air in this room is quite clear," said his father,
"and yet, I dare say, I can show you that there is moisture
even in this room, although we cannot see it."
Mr. Harmer desired the boys to bring him a decanter
of cold spring water, and to place it on the table. In a
few minutes moisture was condensed upon the outside of
the decanter, in little drops like dew.
It has been found," said Mr. Harmer, "that a cubic
foot of air, that is, a quantity of air one foot high, one
foot wide, and one foot long, is capable of holding twelve
grains of water, without the water being in any way per-
ceptible. Now, that cubic foot of air must of course
weigh twelve grains less, if we were to take all the water
from it. Infine weather the water is in the air; but in
wet weather the water is coming out of the air, and falling
to the ground.
"The words, Fair,' 'Change,' Rain,' marked on the
common barometer, mislead people, because the weather
is not always fair when the mercury stands at 'Fair,' nor
is the weather always rainy when the mercury stands at
'Rain.' Indeed, the proper mode of judging of the
weather is not merely to observe how high the mercury
may happen to stand, but to examine whether it is inclined
to rise or fall. If the surface of the mercury be round,
it is inclined to rise, and we may generally expect fine
weather; if the surface be hollow, it is inclined to fall,
and we may then rather except rain. Project- Hollow,
"The barometer is a truly valuable in- onv. coucave.
strument to many persons, but particularly
to sailors, the success of whose operations |
depends so much on the weather. I re-
member an interesting account by Dr.
Arnott, of the value of the marine barometer, and as I
think you will like to hear it, I will read it to you."
Mr. Harmer then took down a volume from the book-
case, and having searched for the word Barometer in the
index, read the following passage:
The marine barometer differs from that used on shore,
in having its tube contracted in one place to a very narrow
bore, so as to prevent that sudden rising and falling of
the mercury, which every motion of the ship would else
occasion. It has not been many years in general use,
and the author was one of a numerous crew who pro-
bably owed their preservation to its sudden warning. It
was in a southern latitude. The sun had just set with
placid appearance, closing a beautiful afternoon, and the
usual mirth of the evening watch was proceeding, when
the captain's order came to prepare with all haste for a
storm. The barometer had begun to fall with appalling
rapidity. As yet the oldest sailors had not even perceived
a threatening in the sky, and were surprised at the extent
and hurry of the preparations; but scarcely were these
preparations completed, when a more awful hurricane
burst upon them than the most experienced had ever
braved. Nothing could withstand it; the sails, already
furled and closely bound to the yards, were riven in
tatters; even the bare yards and masts were in great part
disabled. Such, for a few hours, was the mingled roar of
the hurricane above, of the waves around, and of the
incessant peals of thunder, that no human voice could be
heard, and, amidst the general consternation, even the
trumpet sounded in vain. In that awful night, but for
the little tube of mercury which had given the warning,
neither the strength of the noble ship, nor the skill of
the commander, could have saved one man to tell the tale."
What a dreadful storm it must have
been!" exclaimed George, as his father
finished reading. "But how fortunate
that theyhad the barometerwith them!"
"Indeed it was!" said Fred; "but
I think it was equally fortunate for
the crew that they had a wise cap-
tain, who consulted the barometer even
when the weather appeared so beautiful.
"Without his watchfulness, the baro-
meter would have beenuseless to them."
"I have seen another kind of baro-
meter, papa," said George, "different
e from yours. It has a hand like a clock.
How is that made, for I have never
seen any mercury in it ? "
S c "No," replied Mr. Harmer; be-
cause the mercury is enclosed in the
wooden case. At the back of the baro-
meter you speak of, which is called the wheel barometer,
there is a long narrow door, and when that is opened you
can see the whole construction of the barometer, which
is very simple, and easily understood.
"The glass tube (a) which holds the mercury, instead
of being straight as that in my barometer, is bent up at
the bottom (b), but the mercury does not run out, be-
cause the air presses upon it. A little ball (c) floats
on the surface of the mercury, and a thread is fastened
to the ball; this thread is wound once round a pulley
(d), and to the other end of the thread a little weight (w)
is fastened. When the mercury rises in (a), it sinks in
() ; and the little ball, being rather heavier than the
weight (w), sinks with the mercury, and, in so doing,
pulls the pulley (d) round. To this pulley a hand or
index (e) is fastened, and therefore, as the pulley moves,
the hand moves with it."
The next morning proved as fine as was expected. The
boys were desirous of seeing the process of filling the
balloon, and the party therefore took care to be in good
time at the pleasure-grounds whence it was to ascend.
The boys had seen a print of a balloon in the Ency-
clopedia, and in that print there were a great many tubs
with pipes coming from them to the balloon; they were
therefore surprised to see no tubs in the grounds, and
they asked their father the reason.
The gas, or air, for the balloon," replied Mr. Harmer,
"was formerly obtained at the time it was wanted, from
water, sulphuric acid, and bits of iron put into tubs. The
gas so obtained is called hydrogen gas, and is thirteen
times lighter than common air, and when it is confined in
the balloon, if the balloon and the hydrogen gas together
do not weigh so much as common air, the balloon will
ascend. The hydrogen gas which is burnt in the street
lamps is not so pure as that made in the tubs, but it is
nearly as light; and now it is found most convenient to
buy the gas of the proprietors of the gas-works, as the
balloon has only to be connected with one of the gas-
pipes in the street, and it is filled without further trouble."
Fred was just going to ask his father several questions
about hydrogen gas, and whether he could not make some
with his father's help, when his attention was diverted by
observing that the balloon was nearly filled, and that Mr.
Green was preparing to ascend. At the bottom of the
balloon was a little wicker boat or car, hung by ropes to
a large net which entirely covered the balloon. In this
car Mr. Green placed two flags, some bags of sand, a
mariner's compass, a map, a barometer, and some long
ropes, with grappling-irons (that is, crooked iron hooks)
at the end of the ropes.
The balloon being sufficiently filled, Mr. Green stepped
into the car, and everybody wished him a pleasant voyage.
He was very cheerful, and not at all afraid, for he had been
up more than two hundred times. By his orders, the
ropes which held the balloon were unfastened, and held by
about twelve men. Then Mr. Green took a flag in each
hand, and waving them about, called out Let go! and
instantly the men let go their hold, and the balloon rose
slowly and majestically; the people waved their hats and
shouted "Huzza! huzza!" while Mr. Green waved his
flags in return.
Presently he emptied one of his bags of sand, which
made the balloon lighter, and it therefore ascended rapidly.
In a short time it looked like a mere speck.
As the boys returned home with their father, George
asked his brother what he thought all the things were
for, that Mr. Green put into the car.
I think I can tell the use of them all except the baro-
meter," said Fred. The flags are merely to look gay
and cheerful; the sand we saw was thrown out to lighten
the balloon, and make it go up higher; the mariner's
compass and the map must be to tell Mr. Green which
way he is going when he is above the clouds or in a mist;
and the grappling-irons are to catch hold of a tree or a
hedge, when the balloon comes near the ground, and to
hold it steady while Mr. Green gets out of the car; but
I do not know what can be the use of the barometer. I
do not think it can be to show Mr. Green what kind of
weather he is likely to have, because people in balloons
are generally up only one or two hours, and we are not
accustomed to such sudden storms in England as that
which Dr. Arnott has described. Can you tell us the
reason of Mr. Green's taking up a barometer with him?"
Yes," said his father, "I will tell you with pleasure,
if you cannot find it out yourselves. As the mercury in
the barometer is kept up by the weight or pressure of the
air, do you think the mercury will be as high when the
barometer is carried up in a balloon to a considerable
height above the surface of the earth, as when the baro-
meter is on the ground ? "
"No, papa, it cannot be," said Fred, "because there
is not so much air to press on the surface of the mercury.
There must be all that weight of air less which is between
the balloon and the flat ground; and therefore the higher
Mr. Green ascends, the lower will the mercury fall."
Well," said his father, "and do you see what use Mr.
Green may make of the knowledge of that fact ? "
"Perhaps," said Fred, "Mr. Green has observed, or
has been told, how much the mercury falls in a certain
number of feet; and then, if he had examined the mer-
cury at starting, he may, by observing how much it has
fallen, calculate the precise height he has reached. Am
I right, papa ? "
Quite right, as to the use of the barometer," replied
Mr. Harmer. "The mercury falls more in proportion
near the ground, than at very great heights, because the
air is much heavier near the ground. You can imagine
that if a great deal of wool were piled up very high, the
wool at the bottom would be pressed much closer together
than the wool at the top ; and so it is with the air. It
is on this account that we cannot say the mercury will
always fall one inch for 1,000 feet, although it does so
near the ground; at the height of three miles and a half
from the ground, it would only fall half an inch for 1,000
feet. There are also some other considerations which
make an exact calculation rather difficult; but it will be
quite enough for you to remember that the mercury sinks
about one inch for 1,000 feet, and one-tenth of an inch
for 100 feet. The heights of mountains and various
elevations are frequently taken by means of the baro-
meter. Indeed, its use in this respect was discovered
before it was employed as a weather-glass. It was easier
to observe the change in the mercury when taken to the
top of a mountain than to observe the slight alteration
from the varying pressure of the air when stationary."
The next morning Mr. Harmer read the following para-
graph from the newspaper. Yesterday, at one o'clock,
Mr. Green ascended in his balloon from Hampstead, and
descended in safety at Croydon. When he first came
near the ground, the grappling-iron dragged along the
surface till it caught in a bush; just as he had drawn
himself to the bush, it gave way, and the balloon was
nearly entangled among some tall elm trees; by promptly
throwing out some ballast, the balloon rose and cleared
the trees, when he again let out some gas, and descended
in a field. He called to a ploughman to catch hold of
the grappling-iron; but the man was frightened, and
could render no assistance. The grappling-iron eventually
caught some railings, and Mr. Green having secured the
balloon, got out of the car, let out all the gas, folded up
his balloon, and returned to London. As the weather
was very calm, the balloon continued in sight of London
almost the whole of the way, which induced Mr. Green
to ascend higher than usual. The barometer at starting
stood at thirty inches, and at its highest elevation it sunk
to 231o inches, which, it is calculated, indicates a height
of 6,838 feet, or about a mile and a quarter."
How interesting this account is, papa," exclaimed
Fred, after having seen the balloon, and had that con-
versation with you about the barometer. Oh must you
go to town just yet ?" continued he, as he observed his
father looking for his hat and gloves. I wished to ask
you so many questions about balloons and barometers."
"I can spare you but five minutes, Fred," replied his
father, as the omnibus will be here by that time. What
is it you particularly wish me to answer ? "
"Do you know the greatest height that any one has
ever ascended in a balloon ? said Fred.
Yes; I believe M. Gay Lussac, a Frenchman, remark-
able for his knowledge and accurate observation, ascended
in 1804, higher than any other person has ever done, and
he reached the height of twenty-three thousand feet, or
more than four miles and a quarter above the level of the
94 THE BAROMETER.
Oh, papa exclaimed Fred, that is higher than the
No, not higher than some of the mountains in Asia,"
replied Mr. Harmer, but sixteen hundred feet above the
summit of the Andes. The mercury in the barometer fell
to less than thirteen inches. At this extraordinary height
M. Lussac tried a variety of experiments upon air and
other subjects, and with as much coolness and exactness
as if he had been in his own house in Paris."
One question more, papa: in what book can I find
an account of M. Lussac's ascent ? "
In the Supplement of the Encyclopedia, where there
are many other accounts also of different voyages in the
air," replied Mr. Harmer, some of which, I think, you
will find very interesting."
"You seem very busy this morning, lads," said Mr.
Harmer, as he entered the play-room, and saw Fred
standing upon a chair at a closet, arranging piles of books
which George was handing to him from time to time, while
around them were painting-boxes, desks, models of steam-
engines and carriages, boats, bridges, and a variety of
Yes, papa," said Fred: mamma has given us the use
of this closet, that we may keep our books and different
things together. Lucy is so fond of looking at our con-
trivances, that she often injures them if they happen to
be within her reach, and we are not at home to take care
of them: mamma says, therefore, that as Lucy is too
young to understand the value of them, it would be better
for us to keep out of her reach those things which we do
not wish her to play with. Is not this closet large and
roomy, and are not these shelves around the three sides
of it convenient ? "
"There is one thing, papa, though, that the closet
requires," said George, before we can be quite sure that
Lucy cannot get at our things."
"What is that ? said Mr. Harmer.
"A lock, papa," replied George. If you will allow
us to put a lock on your door, we intend to buy one."
I will allow you with pleasure," replied Mr. Harmer,
"but who is to fix the lock ? "
"I think I can," said Fred.
Yes," said his father, "as you can use the necessary
tools for the purpose, the chisel, the mallet, and screw-
driver, and keyhole saw, I dare say you will be able to
accomplish it. I think, however, it would be a good plan
to try to fix the lock in a plain piece of wood first, and
then you will be less likely to spoil the door."
To this Fred willingly agreed. But what sort of a
lock am I to ask the ironmonger for ? said he.
It must be a common cupboard lock," said his father,
"about four inches long; then the bolt must come out
to the left hand, and I should like it to have solid wards.
The lock should be sunk inside a hollow cut out of the
door, and not merely screwed outside. The ironmonger
will know exactly what you want, if you ask for a four-
inch, left-hand, inside cupboard lock, with solid wards."
"Thank you, papa; as soon as we have placed the
things neatly in the closet, we will go and buy the lock."
When the boys went to the ironmonger's, they saw a
great variety of locks, on one of which was written,
"The sum of one hundred pounds will be given to the
person who can pick this lock." This made them very
curious to know something about it.
It must be a very valuable lock, if it is impossible or
very difficult to pick it," observed Fred to his brother.
" I have heard a hundred times of locks that have been
picked by thieves, for the sake of stealing valuable pro-
Pray," said Fred, turning to the shopman, why can-
not that lock be picked F "
On account of the number of tumblers."
The man's answer puzzled the boys exceedingly.
"What are tumblers, sir ?" inquired George.
They are the things that lock the bolt, and prevent it
from shooting," answered the shopman.
The boys were not much wiser for this explanation, so
they resolved to ask their father about the lock when
they reached home. They purchased the cupboard lock;
but as they were leaving the shop, they could not help
lingering at the window, to look once more at the lock
which had particularly struck their attention.
"How I should like to see the inside of that lock! "
said Fred, softly, to his brother.
Should you ? said the master of the shop, who had
overheard Fred's remark. Then if you will come this
afternoon at five o'clock, I will show it to you, as I shall
then be at leisure; and perhaps I shall be able to make
you understand its construction."
Fred thanked the ironmonger for his good-natured
offer, and said he should feel much pleasure in coming.
The boys ran home and told their father of the curious
lock, and of the invitation they had received. "But,"
said Fred, I should like to see the inside of this common
lock first, because I think I shall then better understand
the valuable lock that the ironmonger is going to show
You may easily see the inside of the lock," said Mr.
Harmer, "by unscrewing the two little screws which
screw the back and front of the lock together."
George fetched the screw-driver, and Fred soon took
out the screws. Mr. Harmer then pointed out the dif-
ferent parts of the lock, which are exactly like these little