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detic and Geophysical Union was formed, with six sections, as follows: (a) Geodesy, (b) Seismology, (c) Meteorology, (d) Terrestrial Magnetism and Electricity, (e) Physical Oceanography, and (f) Volcanology. Officers elected were listed in SCIENCE1 of October 31, 1919.

The delegates who went on behalf of the geophysical sciences from the United States to these meetings at Brussels, were Messrs. William Bowie, Chairman, L. A. Bauer, G. W. Littlehales, and Rear-Admiral Edward Simpson. At Brussels Messrs. C. E. Mendenhall and H. S. Washington who were already abroad were added to this delegation.

At the call of the chairman of the "American Section," on October 31,1919, an informal conference of these delegates, constituting the committee on organization authorized on June 24, with other members of the "American Section" who reside in and near Washington, was held at the offices of the National Research Council. At this meeting, after a general exchange of views, a subcommittee or organization to draft proposals for statutes, was designated by the committee of delegates -to consist of Messrs. L. A. Bauer, Chairman, William Bowie, W. J. Humphreys, G. W. Littlehales, and H. O. Wood. This subcommittee held several meetings early in November, at some of which it had the benefit of further extended conference with Messrs. Mendenhall and Washington, who were present at Brussels. As an outcome, a draft of "Proposals for the Permanent Organization and Statutes of the American Geophysical Union " was drawn up, approved by the committee of delegates charged with the duty of preparing for permanent organization, and since it was not considered expedient to call a meeting of the section in Washington this draft was submitted for a vote by mail ballot to all members of the "American Section." An affirmative vote was returned by a considerable majority of the members prior to the date set for the count of ballots and subse

1 Bauer, L. A., "Geophysics at the Brussels Meeting," July 18-28, 1919, SCIENCE, October 31, 1919, 1296, pp. 399-403.

quent affirmative ballots delayed in transit were received from nearly all members. There were no dissenting votes.

These statutes of the American Geophysical Union, thus approved by the "American Section," were then submitted to the executive board of the National Research Council and were approved by that body on December 20, 1919, and on February 14, 1920, the American Geophysical Union was made a Committee of the Executive Board

This action established the American Geophysical Union as a permanent organization superseding the "American Section of the proposed International Geophysical Union." As thus constituted the American Geophysical Union serves as "the American National Committee' of the International Geodetic and Geophysical Union, and as the Committee on Geophysics of the National Research Council." Its initial membership is the membership of the "American Section" as this stood on July 1, 1919, together with the Chairman of the Division of Physical Sciences, the Chairman of the Division of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, and the Chairman of the division of Geology and Geography of the National Research Council, and the American officers of the International Geodetic and Geophysical Union and of its sections, as members ex-officio. Its general administration is delegated to an Executive Committee made up of the chairman and secretary of the union, and the chairman of each of its sections which, initially, are the same as those in the International Union, viz: (a) geodesy, (b) seismology, (c) meteorology, (d) terrestrial magnetism and electricity, (e) physical oceanography, and (f) volcanology.

At its first, regular, annual meeting officers will be elected in accordance with the terms of the statutes. Meanwhile, by action of the "American Section" taken on June 24, 1919, the chairman and secretary of that organization continue to serve.

By action of the provisional executive committee of the "American Section" an election of acting chairmen for each of the newly constituted sections was held in January, 1920,

by mail ballot counted on February 2, in order to constitute an acting executive committee conforming in organization with the statutes, to prepare the way for the first annual meeting. As a result of that election the following acting chairmen were elected: Section (a) William Bowie, Section (b) Harry Fielding Reid, Section (c) C. F. Marvin, Section (d) L. A. Bauer, Section (e) G. W. Littlehales, and Section (ƒ) H. S. Washington.


Secretary, American Geophysical Union




IT is well known that different psychic stimuli promote or retard the secretion of digestive juices. The following experiment was conducted to determine whether the ultimate return to the body from unpalatable food was different from that of the same food palatably served.

dirty dishes. A little indol was sprinkled about under the table. The subjects were kept in ignorance of the constituents of the unpalatable mixture. The food was so unpalatable that one subject vomited his first meal shortly after he had eaten it.

The table shows the finding, on the other subject.

The differences in utilization of the palatable and unpalatable foods were quite small as were the variations in nitrogen retention. This short test indicates that flavor is not the outstanding dietetic asset that some people would have us believe. If the stomach and intestine can only be cajoled into making the proper effort, the unsavory concoction can be digested just about as satisfactorily as can the food mixture which makes a stronger appeal. If the things we eat have proper food value, we need not worry unduly as to their digestion, absorption, and utilization by the normal body. This ought to be good news to millions of people who eat unpalatable food in untidy surroundings, in spite of the fact

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The experimental procedure was simple. A 7-day period during which the subjects were on a uniform diet, served palatably and amid pleasant surroundings, was followed by a 2day period during which the same diet was fed in an unpalatable condition and in dirty and unpleasant surroundings. The food was rendered unpalatable and unappetizing by the following treatment. All the food ordinarily used for each meal (meat, biscuits, jelly, cornstarch, pudding, oleomargarine, etc.) was stirred together in a large, flat porcelain dish. The dish itself was smeared with animal charcoal, as was the beaker used as a drinking glass. The table was dirty and strewn with

1 From the Laboratory of Physiological Chemistry, Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, Pa.

that one of our leading physiologists says "What man likes best he digests best." This experiment simply shows how insulting we can be to the normal stomach and get away with it but does not necessarily prove this to be the wisest policy.





THE Northwestern Division of the Western Society of Naturalists held its holiday meeting on January 2, in Portland, Oregon.

There were present delegates from the states of Oregon and Washington. The afternoon program was taken up with a discussion of "The Rôle of Research in the Development of Northwest Colleges" and also with a discussion of special papers. The evening program was given over to a symposium on premedical education. The following papers were read:

"The premedical education as a surgeon sees it," by Dr. Richard B. Dillehunt, of Portland.

"The premedical education as the medical school would like it," by Dr. H. B. Myers, University of Oregon Medical School.

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THE two hundred and eighth regular meeting of the American Mathematical Society was held at Columbia University on Saturday, February 28, 1920, extending through the usual morning and afternoon sessions. The attendance included twenty-eight members. Vice-president R. G. D. Richardson occupied the chair. The following new members were elected: F. J. Burkett, Pennsylvania State College; A. D. Campbell, Cornell University; Y. R. Chao, Cornell University; R. E. Gilman, Brown University; D. C. Kazarinoff, University of Michigan; Norman Miller, Queen's University; G. M. Robison, Cornell University; Jung Sun, Pekin Academy; W. H. Wilson, State University of Iowa; S. D. Zeldin, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Six applications for membership were received.

Professor Oswald Veblen, of Princeton University, was appointed to succeed Professor E. W. Brown, resigned, as representative of the society in

the division of physics of the National Research Council.

Steps were taken to submit the question of the incorporation of the society to the vote of the members at the April meeting.

The following papers were read at this meeting: Joseph Lipka: "On the general problem of dynamics.''

A. R. Schweitzer: "On the iterative properties of the algebra of logic."'

A. R. Schweitzer: "On improper pseudogroups, with application to the abstract field."

G. H. Hardy: "On the representation of numbers as sums of squares and in particular of five and seven. ""

J. W. Alexander: "On the representation of any n-dimensional two-sided manifold as a generalized Riemann surface.''

J. W. Alexander: "On the equilibrium of a fluid mass at rest."'

T. H. Gronwall: "Qualitative properties of the ballistic trajectory (second paper)."

T. H. Gronwall: "On the distortion in conformal mapping."

A. A. Bennett: "Fictitious matrix roots of the characteristic equation."'

Pierre Boutroux: "On multiform functions defined by differential equations of the first order." B. H. Camp: "The significance of a difference, and the value of a sample."

J. H. M. Wedderburn: "On division algebras." Edward Kasner: "Geodesics of surfaces and higher manifolds.''

The next meetings of the Society will be at Chicago, April 9-10; San Francisco, April 10, and New York, April 24. The summer meeting and colloquium of the society will be held at Chicago. F. N. COLE, Secretary

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OF MAY 29, 1919, AND THE

1. A TOTAL eclipse of the sun is of more than passing interest, not merely to the astronomer but also to the geophysicist. Indeed, by reason of the supposed verification of the socalled Einstein effect during the solar eclipse of May 29, 1919, which, in consequence, may make that eclipse the most famous of all eclipses observed thus far, an eclipse of the sun has become of profound interest also to the physicist, to the mathematician, and to the philosopher, in general.

In the following brief account of the chief phenomena observed during the solar eclipse of May 29, 1919, the path of totality for which is shown in Fig. 1, the attempt will be made to bring out succinctly the various points of interest to men of science.

2. To give a personal touch let me first briefly state the results of my own expedition to Cape Palmas, Liberia, where totality was longer (6 minutes and 33 seconds) than at any other accessible station, where the sky was comparatively clear, contrary to all good meteorological predictions, and where totality

1 Abstract of papers presented before the Philosophical Society of Washington (October 11, 1919 and January 3, 1920), Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Toronto (December 2, 1919), American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Boston (January 14, 1920), American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia (February 6, 1920) and American Physical Society (New York, February 28). Also basis of public lectures delivered at the following universities: Toronto (December 2, 1919), College of the City of New York (December 4, 1919), Johns Hopkins (January 12), Yale (January 13), Brown (January 15), Columbia (January 16), Swarthmore (February 7) and Middletown Scientific Association of Wesleyan University (March 9).

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occurred at about one P.M. local mean time. The purpose of my expedition was not to make astronomical but geophysical observations, the chief of which were to be observations to detect, or verify, a possible effect on the earth's magnetic field such as has been shown by observations made under my direction, since the solar eclipse of May 28, 1900. Though it is not necessary for the detection of this magnetic effect to have a clear sky, as no layer of cloud could screen it, it has been my good fortune now three times2

2 Manua, Samoan Islands, April 28, 1911; Corona, Colorado, June 8, 1918; Cape Palmas, Liberia, May 29, 1919. In addition I made observations at Rocky Mount, North Carolina, of the total solar eclipse, May 28, 1900.

to have a clear sky when others whose work absolutely depended upon clear weather were not so fortunate.

3. When I left Washington early in March, 1919, it had been arranged that I should occupy conjointly with Dr. Abbot of the Smithsonian Institution, La Paz, Bolivia, in order that I might have there the conditions encountered during the eclipse of June 8, 1918, at my station, Corona, Colorado, the elevation of which is 12,000 feet. As Dr. Abbot intended to look after the photographic work, I did not provide myself with appliances for purely astronomical work. Upon arrival in England, it was found impracticable to reach a South American station in time for the eclipse; accordingly, it was

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