National Geographic : 1898 May
256 GEOGRAPHIC SERIALS were fitted with train brakes, as were also 17,921 of the 20,351 freight locomotives, and 3,895 of the 5,656 switching and other locomotives. Such is the picture of the condition of the railways of the United States so far as it can be derived from this report, and if it fails to meet in any way with the reasonable desires of the student of transportation who seeks a complete numerical description of the business of interstate trans portation of persons and property as conducted in the United States at the present time, the fault is in no way attributable to the statistician or to his assistants, but to the inadequacy of the legislation which provides for the collection of these statistics. The very excellence of the report from a technical standpoint causes greater regret that those who have had its preparation in charge have not been intrusted with the collection of those data which all intelligent students of transportation so seriously need. No statistical report can adequately present the business of trans portation while omitting to deal with the business of express compani s and that of interstate carriers operating via water routes. It is also to be desired that the classification of the data now collected be greatly extended and the supervision of the accounting of individual roads so perfected as to insure greater definiteness in the items included. H. T . NEWCOMB. GEOGRAPHIC SERIALS The GeographicalJournalfor March contains a summary of Mr Peary's explorations in Greenland, under the title of "Journeys in North Green land." Dr Sven Hedin commences a narrative of his " Four Years' Travel in Central Asia." Hon. D. W . Carnegie publishes a narrative of his " Explorations in the Interior of Western Australia." The Bulletin of the American GeographicalSociety, No. 1, 1898, offers the following table of contents : " Relations of Irrigation to Geography," by H. M. Wilson; " From Cairo to Beni Hassan," the location of some of the most celebrated tombs of ancient Egypt, by D. Cady Eaton, and " Physical Geography of New York State," the third installment of a continued story, by Prof. R. S. Tarr. The Journal of the Royal Colonial Institute for March is largely devoted to a paper by Henry Birchenough on " Some Aspects of our Imperial Trade," and an extended discussion. It is curious to find an Englishman com plaining of the greater cheapness of foreign goods, of the want of adapt ability of British manufacturers and traders, the superiority of foreign methods of pushing trade, and the lower freights of foreign shipping com panies, especially when he instances the American as the chief competitor and as excelling the Briton in these respects. The article is extremely significant and very suggestive. Another suggestive article is by Mr Everard R. Calthrop on "Light Railways for the Colonies," in which he rehearses arguments in favor of cheap construction which, while perhaps new to his readers, have controlled the construction of the entire railroad system of this country.G . H. G.