National Geographic : 1898 Oct
THE GEOSPHERES engineers of other countries can do it, American engineers are called to the task. Our progress in application has combined with our progress in knowledge to strengthen individual char acter, to produce a free and forceful individuality greater than other countries know-an individuality splendidly expressed in the faces before me. This exalted individuality is displayed in more perfect coordination of thought, in more complete union of hand and brain than the world has ever seen before; it is re vealed in moral uprightness and strength of character, in per sonal courage, even in that splendid marksmanship-the highest expression of coordination between mind and muscle-which is America's latest revelation to the world. The individual char acter of Americans gives national character to America; our patriotism, the spontaneous product of free minds, is broader and deeper than any sentiment brought out by royal edict; no other country could match the recent impulse which prompted the millionaire clubman of New York and the roving cowboy of Arizona to stand shoulder to shoulder in a war for hu manity's sake. It is the unequaled individuality of the free citizen, united and controlled by a dominant idea, that forms the basis of our indomitable social organization, a social organ ization faintly expressed by that.coordination in army and navy which overwhelms opposition. Complete as is our coordination in military matters, it is much more perfect in civil life, in that unceasing conquest over nature toward which our deepest thoughts are bent; and our 70,000,000 individuals, each a tower of individual strength, are kept in touch by telegraph and tele phone and press, united in thought and purpose, knit into the strongest social and political fabric the world has seen. It is this social fabric, the expression of thought and purpose, which I have in mind in referring to the psychosphere, most delicate yet noblest of the geospheres, which seems to be enveloping our planet and commencing the control of the rock-sphere, the water-sphere, and even the air-sphere for the good of humanity. And it is this conquest of the powers and resources of the ex terior spheres, inspired by intellectual freedom and guided by liberal education like that which you dispense, that has placed America in the foremost rank among the nations of the earth.