Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Department of


Document Type


Date of this Version



Science, New Series, Vol. 11, No. 270 (Mar. 2, 1900), pp. 343-344


IN a State such as Nebraska where there is no 'mineral'--a term which in the west has come to mean gold and silver-bearing--it is difficult to convince the masses that there is the least possible economic importance in a State geological survey.

If 'mineral' did occur, apathy could much more easily be overcome, and the appeals for a survey would find more willing and receptive ears. But something stronger than apathy is encountered in the prejudice which has been engendered against a State survey by men who have sought heretofore to establish such for the evident purpose of holding office, that is make a political job of it. This prejudice seems justifiable, nevertheless it is none too easy to live down. A good many years have passed since our admission to Statehood, yet Nebraska, a commonwealth greater than all New England, has never made an allowance of any kind for a State survey, not even for the postage and stationery used in correspondence. Literally then not so much as one cent has ever been voted for such work to date. Even moral support has been withheld, save that the titles Acting Botanist, Acting Chemist and Acting Geologist have been conferred. The title being the sole emolument of office. However, the preliminary work of a survey, Which has engaged the writer's attention for successive summer vacations since 1891, has just received from the University of Nebraska encouraging recognition, and an allowance, which, though small, is substantial.