National Geographic : 1900 Jun
GEOGRAPHIC MISCELLANEA Two PRIZES, the first of $150 and the second of $75, were offered in 1899 by the National Geographic Society for the best essays on Norse discoveries in America. The competition closed December 31, 1899. By the decision of the Board of Judges, consisting of Henry Gannett, Geographer of the U. S . Geological Survey; Albert Bushnell Hart, Professor of History in Harvard University ; Dr Anita Newcomb McGee, Acting Assistant Surgeon, U. S. Army; John Bach McMaster, Professor of History in the University of Pennsylvania, and Dr Henry S. Pritchett, Superintendent of the U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, the first prize has been awarded to Charles B. Dalton, of New York City, and the second prize to Kenton Foster Murray, of Norfolk, Virginia. THAT the ant in the tropics is much more important as a geologic agent than the earthworm of temperate regions is maintained by J. C . Branner, Professor of Geology in Leland Stanford University. Professor Branner discovered new proof in favor of his theory during several months passed in Brazil in 1899, which he publishes in the last number of the Journal of Geology. In the city of Theophilo Ottoni the streets had been in many places cut down through rock which in places was decayed, and in some of the fresh cuts he saw holes made by ants penetrating the ground to a depth of ten, twelve, and even thirteen feet. Naturally the ants do not bore into the hard undecayed rocks, but the opening up of the ground by their long and ramifying underground passages hastens decay, and the working over of the soil contributes to the same end. THE gold-bearing area of Cape Nome and the copper fields in the vicinity of Copper River and Mt Wrangell, the most important field for exploration in Alaska at the present time, will be carefully surveyed by parties from the U. S. Geological Survey during the coming summer. The extent of the gold belt that passes through Cape Nome is unknown, but it is believed to cover an area of from 3,000 to 4,000 square miles, all of which needs to be mapped and pros pected. Mr Alfred H. Brooks, geologist, who, in company with Mr F. C . Schrader, visited Cape Nome in 1899, and Mr E. C. Barnard, topographer, will direct the geologic and topographic parties at work in this territory, and hope to bring back a map of the gold area on the scale of four miles to the inch. Another party, led by Messrs W. J. Peters and T. C. Mendenhall, is to trace the extension of the gold belt to the northeastward and determine how far it penetrates into the interior of Alaska. Two billion five hundred million dollars of German capital is invested in agricultural, industrial, and commercial enterprises beyond the seas; nor does this enormous sum include the foreign securities held by Germans. In Mexico German interests are estimated at $95,000,000; in Central America and the West Indies, $60,000,000 each ; in the north of South America, $47,000,000; on the west coast of South America, $70,000,000; on the east coast, $140,000,000; in Persia, Arabia, and British India, $12,000,000; in southeast Asia, $60,000,000; in east Asia, $17,000,000. In North Africa Germans possess plantations and industrial works worth $2,500,000; in West Africa, $1,000,000; in Cape Colony, $9,000,000; in the Transvaal, $240,000,000; in Portuguese Africa, $5,000,000 In Turkey Germans have invested about $7,000,000 in landed property and $60,000,000 in industrial enterprises, mainly railways, not including $95,000,000 which the Bagdad-Busra Railway will cost. German interests in the United States and Canada are estimated at from $1,000,000,000 to $1,250,000,000.