National Geographic : 1902 Nov
394 THE NATIONAL Gi his principal and devoted assistant, Dr W J McGee, the practical management of the Bureau of which he was the head. Major Powell possessed a faculty of suggesting ideas to others and of inspir ing others to carry them out. This element of his personality Dr G. K. Gilbert, for many years a close per sonal friend of Major Powell, brings out very clearly in a biographical sketch published in Science of October 10, 1902: " In summarizing the results of his active life it is not easy to separate the product of his personal work from that which he accomplished through the organization of the work of others. He was extremely fertile in ideas, so fertile that it was quite impossible that he should personally develop them all, GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE and realizing this he gave freely to his collaborators. The work which he in spired and to which he contributed the most important creative elements I be lieve to be at least as important as that for which his name stands directly re sponsible. As he always drew about him the best ability he could command, his assistants were not mere elaborators, but made also important original con tributions, and the ideas which he gave the world through others are thus so merged and mingled with theirs that they can never be separated. If we count the inspiration of his colleagues as part of his work of organization, then the organization of researches may properly be placed first in the list of his contributions to the progress of science." G.H.G. THE COURSE OF THE RETAIL COAL TRADE BY DR. DAVID T. DAY, CHIEF OF DIVISION OF MINERAL RESOURCES, U. S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY ON the average the total consump tion in the United States of fuel of all kinds-hard and soft coal, wood, natural gas, and petroleum-is equivalent to about five tons of coal per year for each man, woman, and child. Of this about two-thirds of a ton is an thracite and, approximately, three tons bituminous coal. At the mouth of the mine the anthracite is worth about $ .50 atonandthesoftcoal$Iaton. Asa rule, the coal must be hauled not more than 150 to 200 miles to the consumer. These figures are low, compared with the cost in other parts of the world. The most fortunate element in these fundamental facts of our fuel supply is the short distance which the coal must be hauled from the mines to the con sumer. In other words, coal deposits are very generally distributed over the United States. This is a feature of greatest consequence in our exceptional prosperity as a nation. Further, the condition of the forests is still such that where there is least coal, wood is gener ally cheap. Again, there are great tracts of country where natural gas, and occa sionally petroleum, can be used to pre vent any great rise in the price of the general fuel, coal. It is a very difficult matter for the av erage citizen to reconcile this low price at the mine with the actual cost of the coal delivered at his residence. This cost at the point of delivery ranges in.