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“A room without books is like a body without a soul.” —Marcus Tullius Cicero (or G. K. Chesterton?)


The Unexpected Book on the Shelf “I have many swift arrows in my quiver which speak to the wise, but for the crowd they need interpreters.” —Pindar (518–438 B.C.) Olympian Odes, Ib. II, 1. 150


confess: I am a pack rat. Among my antique homeopathic medicine cabinets, shelves crammed with books collected throughout curious years in academe, plants dying from lack of water, papers strewn across my desk and stacked in leaning towers on the floor, and my personal filing system acrobatically balanced on top of my computer, a graduate student once found a Post-it note on a letter asking a secretary to make one copy for the addressee, one for the file, one for the person being copied, and one to throw away. The fourth copy of that letter may be the only thing I have ever discarded. It was here in my office that I recently rediscovered Elliot R. Alexander’s Principles of Ionic Organic Reactions (1). For any organic chemist, especially an inveterate curly-arrow electron pusher, this slim volume is a milestone. The year: 1960. The place: Leary’s Book Store, 9 South 9th Street, Philadelphia. Leary’s was a revered used book store in the city, aptly described by Christopher Morley in The Haunted Bookshop (2): “A vista of white shelves, and the manycoloured tapestry of bindings stretching far away to the rear of the building. . . . The shop was comfortably busy, with a number of people browsing . . . the education department in the basement . . . the medical books in the gallery . . . the sections of drama and Pennsylvania History in the raised quarterdeck in the rear.” I

Number 3 • June 2002

was a graduate student attending my first American Chemical Society Delaware Valley Regional Meeting when I encountered this haven for bibliophiles. While browsing the science section, I found Alexander’s book. As a beginning graduate student in William Mosher’s organic chemistry group at the University of Delaware, I was deeply immersed in the study of reaction mechanisms and finding an “old” book devoted to their exploration was both a surprise and a joy. The year: 1964. The place: Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. I was a new assistant professor developing the first of many courses I would teach incorporating curly-arrow electron pushing in the study of reaction mechanisms. In consulting Alexander’s book while collecting material for the class, I realized that his was one of the first published texts, if not the first, to use curly arrows to depict electron flow and nucleophiles attacking electrophiles in chemical reactions. I had, by pure chance, acquired a seminal volume four years before at Leary’s. The preface to the book explained that Alexander’s text had grown out of a seminar he taught for graduate students and seniors at the University of Illinois. At the time of publication in 1950, Alexander was only three years older than I was when I started at Marshall. A chastening fact was that the title page inside my copy of the fourth printing of the book described its author as “the late Elliot R. Alexander.” I could find no further information about Alexander and did not know what caused his untimely death, but the book became a valued denizen of my office shelves. The year: 2002. The place: Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Even a quick perusal of Alexander’s book shows that he used much of the same language we still use today in discussing mechanisms. In a letter to me, Nelson Leonard, Professor Emeritus in the Chemistry Department at the University of Illinois as well as a good friend and colleague, recalled his time as a graduate student at Columbia with Elliot Alexander and their brief years together on the staff at Illinois. Nelson confirms that “his book grew out of an intense summer seminar course, during which the students who enrolled did literature searches on the chapter subjects and contributed rough drafts. These were checked and improved by Alexander, who wrote them in final form as course notes.” A closer examination of the text shows just how current Alexander’s material was in its day. As befits a book arising from a graduate seminar, over 80 percent of the references to theoretical interpretations of reactions come from articles published in the decade immediately prior to the appearance of the book. Information gathered from instruments that were new at the time is included: data from both Raman and UV-visible spectroscopy are referenced, showing the role played by modern analytical tools in substantiating theories about the behavior of molecules in chemical reactions. As is also typical in seminars at the graduate level, chemists probe questions that at the time are unanswered and apply new theories to speculate about the molecular events that drive results. One such case is Alexander’s treatment of the WolffKishner reduction. This reaction had been known since 1912 but there was no agreement on the mechanism by which it occurred. Alexander

sketched two possible curly-arrow descriptions of likely paths to get from reactants to products (Figure 1). Subsequent experimental data gathered after the publication of his book supported both suggested mechanisms. As is frequently the case, the conditions under which the reaction is run determine which mechanism accurately reflects the behavior of the molecules. Tragically, Alexander and his wife died in the fall of 1950 when the small plane he was piloting crashed on a mountaintop fifteen miles southeast of Johnstown, Pennsylvania. The accident was described in the Daily Times of Bellefonte, Pennsylvania: “Dr. Elliot R. Alexander, the pilot, and his wife took off from Johnstown Municipal Airport in mid-afternoon, Monday, October 23, 1950, en route to State College, where Dr. Alexander . . . was scheduled to speak. The plane was forced down at Johnstown shortly before 3 p.m. Monday. They left the airport within a few minutes, but were forced to turn back. Weather cleared slightly and they again took off (3).” According to Nelson Leonard, “Alexander and his wife were flying [to State College]—we thought, to consider a faculty position there at higher rank. Alexander was determined to make that last leg again despite airport advice.” Nelson also recounts, “I doubt that he had instrument rating, because he used to talk to

Figure 1 – From Note 1, p. 275 Boltonia Number 3 — Page 2

us about following roads and Illinois towns from the air.” An intensive air and ground search for the missing plane lasted four days until Friday October 27, when pilot William H. Weaver of the Civil Air Patrol sighted the wreckage while flying at 2000 feet over the area (Figure 2). In a biographical account of Elliot Alexander (4), Paul Jones wrote that one of Alexander’s students noted, “his book was the first on organic mechanisms written from the standpoint of the organic chemist; it became widely accepted as a textbook.” In addition to this book, from work done solely at Illinois in four years, Alexander published twenty papers, all in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, with an additional three added posthumously by his students. The seminal character both of Alexander’s book and of his research is indicated by the rather astounding fact that Science Citation Index still records references to his book and papers in current journal articles. —Ned Heindel

Notes 1. Alexander, E. R. Principles of Ionic Organic Reactions; John Wiley & Sons: New York, 1950. 2. Morley, C. The Haunted Bookshop; Grossett & Dunlap: New York, 1919. 3. Centre Daily Times, Oct. 28, 1950. 4. Jones, P. J. Chem. Education 1987, 64, 882—883.

Elliott R. Alexander (courtesy Vera Mainz, University of Illinois)

Acknowledgments I appreciate the invaluable help of Roy Olofson (Pennsylvania State University) in searching the 1950 State College area newspapers for coverage of the plane crash, Nelson Leonard (University of Illinois) in providing personal insights into the life of Alexander, Paul Jones (University of New Hampshire) for his fascinating biography of the man, Brian Simboli (Lehigh University, Research Librarian) for his help in locating secondary references, and the staff of Tyche Research Services (Bethlehem, Pennsylvania) for creative input to this article.

Figure 2 – Rescue workers at scene of plane crash (Courtesy Centre Daily Times)

Pratt’s Profiles: On Finding a Worthless Treasure


N a business trip to Connecticut in the early 1970s, I stopped to kill time in a book barn in Winsted. I don’t recall whether or not I bought anything, but I was given a book that I have prized ever since. Dumped on the floor by the door were several hundred volumes that the dealer said were headed for the town dump and that anything I wanted from the pile was free for the taking. Although I rummaged through the entire heap, I found only one volume, a dirtcovered natural philosophy (physics) published in London in 1785 that seemed worth my while to bring back to Delaware. This book was literally worn out. The calf bindings were worm-eaten, the edges of the boards were totally worn away, and the feathery corners of the boards rounded by wear to a one-inch radius. The original spine, worn through ages ago, had been crudely covered over with cow hide. And that new spine also was worn out. About a third of its length was missing, one hinge was totally loose and the other holding by only about half its length. Although its signatures were shaken and a few pages were loose, nothing was missing from the text. I have always been interested in who owned a book before I got it, what they accomplished, etc., and what attracted me to this battered specimen of the printers’ and binders’ art was its treasure trove of names. Written on the inside covers and end papers were eleven signatures, some appearing more than once. Two annotations, “Yale College” and “1799,” were giveaways that these were signatures of students, and I immediately began to wonder what happened to them after college. Yale Alumni records quickly showed that nine of the eleven had graduated between 1797 and 1818. There was no mention of the other two. I have never taken the time to trace them all or put flesh on their bones, but here are two:

Henry W. Baldwin, born in New Haven in 1780, graduated in 1797 and became a lawyer. From 1815 to 1823 he was a member of the U. S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania. In 1830, he was appointed by President Andrew Jackson as Associate Justice of the U. S. Supreme Court under Chief Justice John Marshall and served on the Court until his death in 1844. He was honored by Yale with an LL.D. in 1830. One important court decision in which he participated was Barron vs. Baltimore in 1833, which held that the Bill of Rights limits only the powers of the federal government and not those of state governments. Edmund Dwight (1780–1849) graduated in 1799 and then studied law with Congressman Fisher Ames (1755– 1808). Dwight helped found the towns of Chicopee Falls and Holyoke in Massachusetts, was a founder of the American Antiquarian Society, and was president of the Western Railway, which connected Worcester, Massachusetts to Albany, New York. I also recall reading some place, but can’t verify it at the moment, that Dwight was responsible for the passage of the free school law in Massachusetts. This old physics book was used, passed on, and reused for no telling how long before it became outdated and was replaced by one more up-todate. Yet someone thought enough of it to keep it, maybe as an heirloom, and now I have it. I often say that it is a book that shaped minds that shaped America. —Herb Pratt [Reprinted from Endpapers (the newsletter of the Delaware Bibliophiles), September 1992, p. 3]

Antiquarian Chemistry Book Collectors and Their Public Collections — II


uring the 223rd American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting in April, the Bolton Society again co-hosted a symposium with the ACS Division of History of Chemistry, HIST. Thanks to the efforts of several members, especially James J. Bohning and Herbert Pratt, a half-day session was scheduled for Monday, April 8. The audience was larger than at the previous symposium in August 2001 (See Boltonia Number 2, p. 4) with some thirty attendees. As occurs at most conferences, multitrack sessions were scheduled for each available timeslot, but almost all attendees stayed for at least half of the session, if not the whole afternoon. One-third of the audience comprised speakers or Bolton Society members. Two-thirds of those present were non-members, but clearly interested in the topic of the symposium. The first speaker, Kathleen A. C. Fleming, described the Kresge-Hooker Scientific Library. Housed in Wayne State University (Detroit), this library is based on the personal collection of Samuel Cox Hooker, a nineteenthcentury chemist. Two of Hooker’s specialties were sugar refining and contamination of drinking water. His personal library was sold to Central College in Fayette, Missouri. When Neil Gordon, founder of the Gordon Research Conference, was hired at Wayne State in 1942, he brought Hooker’s collection with him. In due course the collection’s name was changed to the Kresge-Hooker Scientific Library in recognition of funding provided by the Kresge Foundation. Arnold Thackray was the second speaker, describing the bibliophilic activities of Donald F. Othmer, whose personal library and archives are now housed at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia. One symposium attendee, Ray Katzen, shared a few personal reminiscences from his days Boltonia Number 3 — Page 3

as a student of Don Othmer. A renowned chemical engineer and longtime faculty member at Brooklyn Poly, Othmer collected materials almost exclusively in his own field. Correspondence to book dealers illustrate his preference for engineering, chemical manufacture, and maps. Othmer’s specialty subject area, distillation, is the most popular subject of pre-1850 books in his collection. Although most works refer to the chemical process of distillation, a few books describe the effects of imbibing the alcoholic products. The third speaker, Herbert T. Pratt, spoke about Henry Carrington Bolton, after whom the Bolton Society is named. A member of numerous professional organizations, Bolton founded the Chemical Bibliography Division of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The first to teach history of chemistry in a professional capacity, Bolton is best known for his fourvolume work, Select Bibliography of Chemistry, 1492 –1902. This classic contribution to the field of chemical literature may best be described as a labor of love, published over twelve years, with 12,031 titles and 500 explanatory notes. Bolton identified 570 items in his personal collection in the Select Bibliography. He bequeathed a personal library of 1,631 volumes and pamphlets to the Library of Congress that was probably dispersed among the libraries of the Smithsonian Institution. Following a short break, during which attendees met and chatted with fellow bibliophiles, James J. Bohning spoke about the connections between Charles A. Browne’s collection and the Edgar Fahs Smith collection. A sugar chemist, Browne’s major achievement was the 1944 publication of A Source Book of Agricultural Chemistry. As a fellow bibliophile and contemporary of E. F. Smith, Browne contacted the Provost at the University of Pennsylvania in 1928 following Smith’s death. Browne requested that the University retain Boltonia Number 3 — Page 4

Edgar Fahs Smith’s office intact to archive Smith’s personal library and papers. In due course, E. F. Smith’s widow, Margery Smith, bequeathed an endowment and E. F. Smith’s materials to the University of Pennsylvania, with the proviso that it be maintained as a separate collection. In 1945, shortly before his death, Browne donated some 450 items from his personal library to the E. F. Smith Collection, acting upon his belief in the scholarly value of this resource. The penultimate speaker was Seymour Mauskopf, who described the Venable Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). Francis Preston Venable joined the Department of Chemistry faculty in 1880, served as UNC President 1900–1913, then taught history of chemistry until his retirement in 1930. Best known for his 1896 publication, The Development of the Periodic Law, Venable was a lifelong friend of Edgar Fahs Smith. The Venable Collection comprises materials not only from Venable’s personal library but also from an antebellum predecessor, the Reverend Elisha Mitchell. Mitchell arrived at UNC in 1818 as professor of mathematics and philosophy, but in 1825 his teaching role expanded to include chemistry, geology, and mineralogy. On occasion, Mitchell also taught Greek, Latin, rhetoric, and history. Mitchell’s personal library reflected this broad scope of teaching, supplemented by theology, travel, and the classics. Upon his death in 1857, UNC purchased Mitchell’s personal collection of some 2,000 volumes, thereby doubling the library’s holdings. Ranging in date from 1777 to 1855, most of these works are textbooks, as befits a professor. William B. Jensen delivered the final presentation of the afternoon. He spoke about the development and contents of the Oesper Collections at the University of Cincinnati. Named for Ralph Oesper, who endowed the collection at the Department of Chemistry, the large collection com-

prises some 7,000+ journals, 5,000+ monographs, 2,000 photos and prints, plus 6,000 artifacts. Although most materials are from the 19th century, the collections range from the 17th century to 1959; recent publications are housed in the University Chemistry Library nearby. Focusing upon accessibility to information content rather than amassing rare books and original artifacts, the Oesper Collections purchases “rare books” in facsimile format. Complemented by behind-the-scenes storerooms brimming with apparatus and chemical instruments, the Apparatus Museum features the first, and largest, display of a turn-of-the-(20th) century laboratory in the United States. In accordance with the collecting policy, exhibits may include contemporary reproductions of artifacts to more fully illustrate historical developments. Special thanks are due the presenters for contributing to such an informative half-day session. Slides of selected works from the featured collections provided an enjoyable “virtual tour” of several libraries and archives for attendees. For further information on additional historical collections, plan to attend the next Bolton Society/HIST Symposium at the next ACS National Meeting in Boston, August 19–22, 2002. —Elizabeth Swan

Reader’s Retorts: On “Fabrikoid” In the previous issue of Boltonia (Number 2, p. 8), mention was made of a synthetic bookbinding known as “Fabrikoid.” The following provides a further explanation of this material.


abrikoid,” a DuPont product manufactured for nearly ninety years, was an artificial leather material made from woven cotton fabrics that had been coated or impregnated with pyroxylin (cellulose nitrate). One major use for “Fabrikoid” was in durable bookbindings. “Fabrikoid” was first made in 1905 by the American Pegamoid Company of Hohokus, New Jersey (1). A year or so later, DuPont also became interested in pyroxylin as a means of using its excess capacity for making smokeless gun powder. In 1908, the company began to investigate all products that consumed nitrocellulose, including artifical silk, celluloid, and marine paints. In 1910, DuPont bought out American Pegamoid and the “Fabrikoid” name for $1.2 million and then set it up as an independent company (2). By the 1930s, several other companies besides DuPont were selling “Fabrikoid”-like products, a major one being Eastman Kodak (3). By 1946, “Fabrikoid” was available in a wide variety of colors, fabric thickness, embossed effects, and grades, depending on service requirements (4). With the advent of vinyl and other resins starting in the late 1930s, the use of pyroxylin coated fabrics declined dramatically. Whereas the Condensed Chemical Dictionary listed six uses in 1956, it listed only two in 1971 and again in 1997. DuPont discontinued “Fabrikoid” a few years after that. —Herb Pratt

2. Chandler, D.; Salsbury, S. Pierre S. DuPont and the Making of a Modern Corporation; Harper and Row: New York, 1971; pp. 248–250. 3. Hounshell, D.; Smith, J. K., Jr. Science and Corporate Strategy: DuPont 1902–1980; Cornell University Press: Ithaca, NY, 1988; pp. 68-70. 4. Zimmerman, O.T.; Lavine, I. Handbook of Material Tradenames; Industrial Research Service: Dover, NH; p. 174. Note Added in Proof fter receiving the previous item on “Fabrikoid,” I witnessed serendipity in action. That in itself is not rare in book collecting, as any collector will readily admit, but in this case it occurred twice in a period of only two weeks. During a recent trip, I stopped at a favorite bookstore in Wooster, Ohio, where I acquired a copy of A Centennial Volume of the Writings of Charles Goodyear and Thomas Hancock, published for the centennial


commemoration of the discovery of vulcanization by Charles Goodyear in 1839, as celebrated at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Boston in September 1939. On the first day of my return, I found (and subsequently obtained from eBay) a copy of The Nucleus, the publication of the Northeastern and Rhode Island Sections of the ACS. It was a special issue for this very same September 1939 Boston meeting of the ACS. As luck would have it, it was also a promotional item for the meeting. DuPont had bound this special issue in “Fabrikoid” (Figure 3) at its plant in Newburgh, New York (Figure 4) and distributed copies at the Boston meeting. Further, this issue included a special article on “Fabrikoid” (p. 12), written by DuPont. By 1939 “Fabrikoid” was not only used for books, but it had found applications in handbags, luggage, furniture and even shoes. —J. J. Bohning

Figure 3 (above) – From endpaper, The Nucleus, Vol. 17, Sept. 1939 Figure 4 (below) – DuPont “Fabrikoid” plant, Newburgh, New York, circa 1939

Notes 1. Haynes, W. American Chemical Industry; D. Van Nostrand: New York, 1945; Vol. III, p. 345. Boltonia Number 3 — Page 5

Secretarial Scribblings


s the Secretary for the Bolton Society, I have the pleasure of frequently corresponding with each of you as members. I send brochures and other information in response to inquiries about the society, as well as “care” packages to welcome new members. I especially enjoy the opportunity at Bolton Society meetings and symposia to meet members and put faces to familiar names from your letters, e-mails, and phone calls. Receiving members’ inquiries and applications reveals not only the diversity of collections among our membership but also highlights the similarities among us as collectors. These shared interests are especially visible at Show and Tell sessions, where it is difficult to determine who has the greatest enjoyment—the collectors showing their treasures and telling stories or the observers asking questions and sharing reminiscences of related works familiar to them. Such connected items may be in their own collection, or fondly recalled from visits to other collections. In the latest edition of the Bolton Society Membership Directory, printed in March 2002, we added a category based upon the number of items in a member’s collection. For those who cannot precisely assign a number to their holdings, we devised membership categories based upon the following ranges: Folio (5,000+ items); Quarto (1,000-4,999 items); Octavo (100-999 items); and Duodecimo (1-99 items). Congratulations especially to our two Folio members, Foil Miller and Roy G. Neville. Both Miller and Neville have achieved the distinction of amassing a collection that exceeds 5,000 items in chemical and related fields, albeit in different formats. Miller’s collection consists of postage stamps, featuring chemistry and physics, while Neville’s collection is primarily published volumes of alchemy, chemistry, and chemical technologies, complemented by select manuscripts. They are to be Boltonia Number 3 — Page 6

commended for their passion for, and continuing dedication to, the art of collecting. To complement the depth of these two fine collections, our directory entries reveal a broad range of subject interests, publication dates, and physical formats. Collecting interests range from general topics such as history of science, history of medicine, and organic chemistry, to a narrow focus, such as alchemy, folk remedies, mass spectrometry, and selected chemists. Publishing genres, such as textbooks, biographies, and bibliographies, further delineate some collectors’ specialization. This diversity of the printed word is complemented by archival paper-based collections, including postage stamps, postcards, stock certificates, prints, and chemists’ autographs. A few artifacts, such as microscopes, chemical instruments, laboratory apparatus, balances, and chemistry sets, complete the historical picture. Our sixty-one members are also geographically dispersed, with current addresses in twenty-two states, plus one international member each in Israel, Italy, Northern Ireland, South Africa, Sweden, and two members in England. As both a frequent correspondent to the membership and reporter for Bolton Society activities, I am singularly aware of the society’s multi-dimensional growth and diversity. Stay tuned for the next installment. —Elizabeth Swan

Searching the Othmer Library Online


he Othmer Library’s Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC), located at http://othmerlib., allows anyone with access to the World Wide Web to search the Othmer Library catalog via their computer, and even produce bibliographies from our records. Searching the online catalog is fairly intuitive. At the library’s OPAC main menu, simply click on one of the tabs—author, author/title, subject, keyword, call number, journals, and ISSN/ISBN—fill in the appropriate information in the space provided (as little or as much as you wish), click on Submit Search and the system will then display either a bibliographic record for a direct hit, or a Browse screen for similar titles. In the case of the Browse screen, select the entry most closely matching your search. If you choose to select a hot link on the bibliographic record (hot links are underlined and appear blue) these will jump you into Browse screens for further scanning of related materials in the collection. For example, if you click on the classification number, this will give you a shelf listing of all materials cataloged before and after the selected classification number from the bibliographic record. Current library holdings now include more than 84,000 book and journal volumes. The number of records in the library’s OPAC includes nearly 23,000 monographic titles, over 950 serial titles, and 16 archival collections. Since the collection is not yet completely cataloged, if you do not find a title in OPAC please contact us to verify the title within the physical collection. — Elsa B. Atson Assistant Librarian for Technical Services Othmer Library Chemical Heritage Foundation 215-925-2222 ext. 235

Bolton Bits


n the first newsletter (Boltonia Number 1, April 2001) we reprinted Henry Carrington Bolton’s letter to the editors of the American Chemist suggesting that it would be “an agreeable event” for American chemists to meet at some “pleasant watering place” on August 1, 1874 to discuss “the rapid progress of chemical science in the past hundred years.” Now, thanks to Bolton Society member Steve Beare, we have evidence that Northumberland, Pennsylvania was not the only suggested location for this gathering. Beare has found reference to this meeting and our organization’s namesake in his copies of The Manufacturer and Builder, a journal edited by Peter van der Weyde and published between 1869 and 1894. Writing in the June 1874 issue, van der Weyde suggested Salem, Massachusetts as fitting for Bolton’s “pleasant watering place” because “of the cordial reception by its citizens of the members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), in the year 1869,” not to mention the many attractions

for scientists in the “neighborhood of Boston.” Van der Weyde did attend the Northumberland Centennial of Chemistry, which he duly reported in his journal (vol. 6, p. 194). He is on record as being one of those opposed to the formation of a new chemical society when such a motion was made by Persifor Frazer in Northumberland (see Bull. Hist. Chem. 2001, 26, 92–103), and he continued to be a staunch supporter of the AAAS and its newly formed Chemical Subsection. A year earlier, van der Weyde saw fit to include a brief history of the Columbia School of Mines, which opened in 1864 (vol. 5, p. 208). He included several engravings of scenes from that institution, including a “view of the chemical laboratory for quantitative analysis, founded by Prof. [Charles] Chandler and now under the immediate charge of Dr. H. C. Bolton, in which every student has his own table, set of reagents, necessary glassware, tools in drawers, etc.” (Figure 5). Bolton was at Columbia from 1872 to 1877. Complete sets of The Manufacturer and Builder are rare. A

search of the Online Computer Library Center shows this journal available in only five libraries throughout the country. However, the Cornell University library, with funding from the Mellon Foundation, has not only scanned their entire collection but they have made it available online and free of charge at: http://cdl.library. This is the home page of Cornell’s “Making of America,” a “digital library of primary sources in American social history from the antebellum period through reconstruction.” Click on the Browse icon to go to the journal list, and from there you can find The Manufacturer and Builder directly. (Note that early issues Scientific American are also available.) It is possible to save pages in a PDF format and print them exactly as they appeared in the original journal. The engraving in Figure 5 and other views of the School of Mines are located between pages 208 and 209 and can be reached by going to page 208 and then clicking on Thumbnail Sketches in the View As box, where they can be viewed and downloaded. —J. J. Bohning

Figure 5 – “Quantitative Laboratory Under the Charge of H. C. Bolton, Ph.D.” From Manufacturer and Builder 1873, 5, 208a. (Courtesy of Steve Beare) Boltonia Number 3 — Page 7

Editorial Emanations


he production of a newsletter such as Boltonia has two distinct aspects that in many respects have little to do with each other. The easiest part seems to be finding the text material and illustrations. An editor can beg, cajole, and, if need be, twist arms until the text is submitted by authors who are sometimes reluctant and then often relieved that their piece is completed. If all else fails, the editor can even write something as well. Then there is a convenient history of chemistry CD that is filled with illustrations that can be used as filler. For example, in Boltonia Number 2, two such items were included, but without comment or identification. It was actually a test to see if anyone noticed. Once the text and illustrations are in hand, the next step is to lay this all out in a suitable format, which means doing battle with word processors and learning the accepted techniques for what I will call typesetting, a nowarchaic term that still implies the correct meaning. In this regard, Boltonia is a work in progress, and as such will continue to be modified and improved. Shelley Geehr of the Chemical Heritage Foundation designed the first issue, which appeared in April 2001. Shelley selected the masthead format, layout design, and otherwise put the text supplied by the editor on paper. The Bolton Society is indebted to her for the Boltonia layout now in use. For the second issue, December 2001, Shelley provided a template from the first issue and your editor was on his way to taking over the production aspects of the newsletter as well. Moving articles around in three columns to make them fit was only the beginning. There were the dropped caps that Shelley used to begin each article, specific column widths, font selection and line spacing. Editorial privilege was invoked when lines needed to be added or removed in order that a particular

Boltonia Number 3 — Page 8

piece ended at the bottom of the page. Boltonia Number 2 went to press (the Lehigh University Print Shop) without Shelley’s review and professional attention to detail. This means that such matters as “en” and “em” dashes, hyphens, sentence spacing, and ragged right-hand column edges were ignored by your editor (ignorance sure is bliss), but hopefully have been corrected in this issue. The first 95 percent of the production task is the easiest, while the last 5 percent never seems to be finished. Every time an issue is examined (even after printing), something else catches the eye, begging to be corrected. In some cases only your editor knows where these mistakes are, but in his eye they loom very large, indeed. Separate proofreading and production reviews are now used to improve the quality of the newsletter, but your editor assumes full responsibility for any and all errors of omission or commission. — J. J. Bohning FFFFF

Eventual Events August 18, 2002: 224th National Meeting of the American Chemistry Chemical Society, Boston, Massachusetts. Antiquarian Chemistry Book Collectors and Their Public Collections—III (A symposium organized by Herbert T. Pratt and sponsored by the Bolton Society). Papers will be presented by Suzy Tarba, Wesleyan University (the R. P. Williams Collection), Bartow Culp, Purdue University (the M. G. Mellon Collection), and David Corson, Cornell University (the Duveen Collection of Antoine Lavoisier). October 30, 2002: Bolton Society Biannual Meeting, Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, PA.

BOLTONIA is the newsletter of the Bolton Society, an organization of chemical bibliophiles. As a subsidiary of the Chemical Heritage Foundation, the Bolton Society promotes the individual love for and collection of all types of material related to the history and development of the chemical sciences and related technologies. It also advances the cause of the Donald F. and Mildred Topp Othmer Library of the Chemical Heritage Foundation. For more information on the Bolton Society, contact Elizabeth Swan. Founder and Chief Bibliophile: Herbert T. Pratt 23 Colesbery Drive New Castle, DE 19720-3201 302-328-7273 Chief Bibliophile Elect: Ned Heindel Department of Chemistry Lehigh University 6 E. Packer Ave. Bethlehem, PA 18015 610-758-3464 Secretary: Elizabeth Swan Director of Library Services Chemical Heritage Foundation 315 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19106-2702 215-873-8226 Newsletter Editor: James J. Bohning Department of Chemistry Lehigh University 6 E. Packer Ave. Bethlehem, PA 18015 610-758-3582

Boltonia 3  

Boltonia is the newsletter of the Bolton Society, launched by the Chemical Heritage Foundation in 1999 as an organization of collectors of...

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