Bees.—But one of the most profitable as well as interesting kinds of business for a woman is the care of bees. In a recent agricultural report, it is stated that one lady bought four hives for ten dollars, and in five years she was offered one thousand five hundred dollars for her stock, and refused it as not enough. In addition to this increase of her capital, in one of these five years she sold twenty-two hives and four hundred and twenty pounds of honey. It is also stated that in five years one man, from six colonies of bees to start with, cleared eight thousand pounds of honey and one hundred and fifty-four colonies of bees.
The raising of bees and their management is so curious and as yet unknown an art in most parts of our country, that any directions or advice will be omitted in this volume, as requiring too much space, and largely set forth and illustrated in the second part. When properly instructed, almost any woman in the city, as easily as in the country, can manage bees, and make more profit than in any other method demanding so little time and labor. But in the modes ordinarily practiced, few can make any great profit in this employment.
It is hoped a time is at hand when every woman will be trained to some employment by which she can secure to herself an independent home and means to support a family, in case she does not marry, or is left a widow, with herself and a family to support.
In some particulars, the Chinese are in advance of our own nation in neatness, economy, and healthful domestic arrangements. In China, nota particle of manure is wasted, and all that with us is sent off in drains and sewers from water-closets and privies, is collected in a neat manner and used for manure. This is one reason that the compact and close packing of inhabitants in their cities is practicable, and it also accounts for the enormous yields of some of their crops.
The earth-closet is an invention which relieves the most disagreeable item in domestic labor, and prevents the disagreeable and unhealthful effluvium which is almost inevitable in all family residences, The general principle of construction is somewhat like that of a water-closet, except that in place of water is used dried earth. The resulting compost is without disagreeable odor, and is the richest species of manure. The expense of its construction and use is no greater than that of the common water-closet; indeed, when the outlays for plumber's work, the almost inevitable troubles and disorders of water-pipes in a house, and the constant stream of petty repairs consequent upon careless construction or use of water-works are considered, the earth-closet is in itself much cheaper, besides being an accumulator of valuable matter.
To give a clear idea of its principles, mode of fabrication, and use, we can not do better than to take advantage of the permission given by Mr. George E. Waring, Jr., of Newport, R. I., author of an admirable pamphlet on the subject, published in 1868 by "The Tribune Association" of New-York. Mr. Waring was formerly Agricultural Engineer of the New-York Central Park, and has given much attention to sanitary and agricultural engineering, having published several valuable works bearing in the same general direction. He is now consulting director of "The Earth-Closet Company," Hartford, Ct., which manufactures the apparatus and all things appertaining to it—any part which might be needed to complete a home-built structure. But with generous and no less judicious freedom, they are endeavoring to extend the knowledge of this wholesome and economical process of domestic sanitary engineering as widely as possible, and so allow us to present the following instructions for those who may desire to construct their own apparatus.
In the brief introduction to his pamphlet, Mr. Waring says:
"It is sufficiently understood, by all who have given the least thought to the subject, that the waste of the most vital elements of the soil's fertility, through our present practice of treating human excrement as a thing that is to be hurried into the sea, or buried in underground vaults, or in some other way put out of sight and out of reach, is full of danger to our future prosperity.
"Our bodies have come out of our fertile fields; our prosperity is based on the production and the exchange of the earth's fruits; and all our industry has its foundation in arts and interests connected with, or dependent on, a successful agriculture.
"Liebig asserts that the greatness of the Roman empire was sapped by the Cloaca Maxima, through which the entire sewage of Rome was washed into the Tiber. The yearly decrease of productive power in the older grain regions of the West, and the increasing demand for manures in the Atlantic States, sufficiently prove that our own country is no exception to the rule that has established its sway over Europe.
"The large class who will fail to feel the force of the agricultural reasons in favor of the reform which this pamphlet is written to uphold, will realize, more clearly than farmers will, the importance of protecting dwellings against the gravest annoyance, the most fertile source of disease, and the most certain vehicle of contagion."
Nevertheless, Mr. Waring thinks that the agricultural argument is no mean or unimportant one, and says:
"The importance of any plan by which the excrement of our bodies may be returned to our fields is in a measure shown in the following extract from an article that I furnished for the American Agricultural Annual for 1868.
"The average population of New York City—including its temporary visitors—is probably not less than 1,000,000. This population consumes food equivalent to at least 30,000,000 bushels of corn in a year. Excepting the small proportion that is stored up in the bodies of the growing young, which is fully offset by that contained in the bodies of the dead, the constituents of the food are returned to the air by the lungs and skin, or are voided as excrement. That which goes to the air was originally taken from the air by vegetation, and will be so taken again: here is no waste. The excrement contains all that was furnished by the mineral elements of the soil oil which the food was produced. This all passes into the sewers, and is washed into the sea. Its loss to the present generation is complete."
... "30,000,000 bushels of corn contain, among other minerals, nearly 7000 tons of phosphoric acid, and this amount is annually lost in the wasted night-soil of New-York City. [Footnote: Other mineral constituents of food—important ones, too—are washed away in even greater quantities through the same channels; but this element is the best for illustration, because its effect in manure is the most striking, even so small a dressing as twenty pounds per acre, producing a marked effect on all cereal crops. Ammonia, too, which is so important that it is usual in England to estimate the value of manure in exact proportion to its supply of this element, is largely yielded by human excrement.]
"Practically the human excrement of the whole country is nearly all so disposed of as to be lost to the soil. The present population of the United States is not far from 35,000,000. On the basis of the above calculation, their annual food contains 200,000 tons of phosphoric acid, being the amount contained in about 900,000 tons of bones, which, at the price of the best flour of bone, (for manure,) would be worth over $50,000,000. It would be a moderate estimate to say that the other constituents of food are of at least equal value with the other constituents of the bone, and to assume $50,000,000 as the money value of the wasted night-soil of the United States every year.
"In another view, the importance of this waste can not be estimated in money. Money values apply, rather, to the products of labor and to the exchange of these products. The waste of fertilizing matter reaches farther than the destruction or exchange of products: it lessens the ability to produce.
"If mill-streams were failing year by year, and steam were yearly losing force, and the ability of men to labor were yearly growing less, the doom of our prosperity would not be more plainly written, than if this slow but certain impoverishment of our soil were sure to continue.
.... "But the good time is coming, when (as now in China and Japan) men must accept the fact that the soil is not a warehouse to be plundered—only a factory to be worked. Then they will save their raw material, instead of wasting it, and, aided by nature's wonderful laws, will weave over and over again the fabric by which we live and prosper. Men will build up as fast as men destroy; old matters will be reproduced in new forms, and, as the decaying forests feed the growing wood, so will all consumed food yield food again."
With the above brief extract, we shall cease using marks of quotation, as the following information and statements are appropriated bodily, either directly or with mere modifications for brevity, from the little pamphlet of Mr. Waring.
The earth-closet is the invention of the Rev. Henry Moule, of Fordington Vicarage, Dorsetshire, England.
It is based on the power of clay, and the decomposed organic matter found in the soil, to absorb and retain all offensive odors and all fertilizing matters; and it consists, essentially, of a mechanical contrivance (attached to the ordinary seat) for measuring out and discharging into the vault or pan below a sufficient quantity of sifted dry earth to entirely cover the solid ordure and to absorb the urine.
The discharge of earth is effected by an ordinary pull-up similar to that used in the water-closet, or (in the self-acting apparatus) by the rising of the seat when the weight of the person is removed.
The vault or pan under the seat is so arranged that the accumulation may be removed at pleasure.
From the moment when the earth is discharged, and the evacuation is covered, all offensive exhalation entirely ceases. Under certain circumstances, there may be, at times, a slight odor as of guano mixed with earth; but this is so trifling and so local, that a commode arranged on this plan may, without the least annoyance, be kept in use in any room.
This statement is made as the result of personal experience. Mr. Waring says:
"I have in constant use in a room in my house an earth-closet commode; and even when the pan is entirely full, with the accumulation of a week's use, visitors examining it invariably say, with some surprise, 'You don't mean that this particular one has been used!'"
HOW TO MAKE AN EARTH-CLOSET.
The principle on which the earth-closet is based is as free to all as is the earth itself, and any person may adopt his own method of applying it. All that is necessary is to have a supply of coarsely sifted sun-dried earth with which to cover the bottom of the vessel to be used, and after use to cover the deposit. A small box of earth, and a tin scoop are sufficient to prevent the gravest annoyance of the sickroom. But, of course, for constant use, it is desirable to have a more convenient apparatus—something which requires less care, and is less troublesome in many ways.
To this end, the patent invention of Mr. Moule is applicable. This comprises a tight receptacle under the seat, a reservoir for storing dry earth, and an apparatus to measure out the requisite quantity, and throw it upon the deposit.
The arrangement at the mechanism is shown in Fig. 67. A hopper-shaded reservoir, made of galvanized iron, is supported by a framework at the back of the seat, which rests on the framework a, a. Connected with the handle at the right-hand side, there is an iron lever, which operates a movable box at the bottom of the reservoir, and causes it to discharge its contents directly under the seat. When the handle is dropped, the box returns to its position, and is immediately filled preparatory to another use.
The hopper-shaped reservoir is supported by two pivots, and has a slight rocking or vibrating motion imparted to it by each lifting of the lever. This prevents the earth from becoming clogged, and insures its regular delivery.
The construction is more clearly shown in Fig. 68.
In this figure, A is the vibrating hopper for holding the earth. Its capacity may be increased to any desired extent by building above it a straight-sized box of any height. It is not unusual, in fixed privies, to make this reservoir large enough to hold a supply for several months. As the earth is dry, there is no occasion for the use of any thing better than common pine boards in making this addition to the reservoir.
B is one side of the wooden, frame by which the hopper is supported and it may be made of one inch pine or spruce.
C is a box of lacquered or galvanized iron, without either top or bottom. It moves on two pivots, one of winch is shown on its exposed side. In its present position, its upper end opens into the hopper, and its lower end is dosed by the stationary board over which it stands. When the handle is pulled up, the lever, which is connected with the box, jerks it rapidly up, so that its back side closes the opening of the reservoir, and its bottom opens to the front. In its movement it discharges its contents of earth forward under the seat. When the handle is dropped, the box returns to its natural position, and is charged again.
D is one of the pivots—a corresponding one being on the other side—by which the hopper is supported, and on which it vibrates.
a, a, a, a, a, a, are the parts of the framework, the dimensions of which in feet and inches are given.
The only essential part not shown is an earthen-ware pan without a bottom, similar to the pan of a water-closet, only not so deep and with a larger opening, which is attached to the under side of the seat, and which in a measure prevents the rising of dust, and conducts the urine to the point at which the most earth falls. This is the least important part of the invention, but it has a certain advantage.
The self-acting apparatus is more complicated, and persons wishing it would do best to apply directly to the Company.
THE ORDINARY PRIVY.
In the circular published by the Earth-Closet Company, the following directions are given:
"An ordinary fixed closet requires the apparatus to be placed at the back of, and in connection with, the usual seat; the reservoir for containing the earth being placed above it. Under it there should be a chamber or vault about four feet by three wide, and of any convenient depth, with a paved or asphalted bottom, and the sides lined with cement. Should there be an existing cesspool, it may be altered to the above dimensions. Into this the deposit and earth fall, and may remain there three, six, or twelve months, and continue perfectly inodorous and innoxious, merely requiring to be occasionally leveled by a rake or hoe. If, however, it should be found impossible or inconvenient to have a vault underneath, a movable trough, of iron or tarred wood, on wheels, may be substituted. In this case, it will be advisable to raise the seat somewhat above the floor, to allow the trough to be of sufficient size.
"By one form of construction, (the 'pull-up,') the pulling up of a handle releases a sufficient quantity of the dry earth, which is thrown into the pit or vault, covering the deposit and completely preventing all smell. By another, (the 'self-acting,') the same effect is produced by the action of the seat. The apparatus may be placed in, and adapted to, almost any existing closet or privy, and so arranged that the supply and removal of earth may be carried on inside or outside as desired."
The following is taken from the company's circular:
"In the commode, the apparatus and earth-reservoir are self-contained, and a movable pail takes the place of the chamber or vault above described. This must be emptied as often as necessary, and the contents may be applied to the garden or field, or be allowed to accumulate in a heap under cover until wanted for use. This accumulation is inodorous, and rapidly becomes dry. The commode can stand in any convenient place in or out of doors. For use in bedrooms, hospital wards, infirmaries, etc., the commode is invaluable. It is entirely free from those faint, depressing odors common to portable water-closets and night-stools, and through its admission one of the greatest miseries of human life, the foul smells of the sick-room, and one of the most frequent means of communicating infection, may be entirely prevented. It is invariably found that, if any failure takes place, it arises from the earth not being properly dry. Too much importance can not be attached to this requirement. The earth-commode will no more act properly without dry earth, than will a water-closet without water.
"These commodes are made in a variety of patterns, from the cottage commode to the more expensive ones in mahogany or oak, and vary in price accordingly. They are made to act either by a handle, as in the ordinary water-closet, or self-acting on rising from the seat. The earth-reservoir is calculated to hold enough for about twenty-five times; and where earth is scarce, or the manure required of extraordinary strength, the product may be dried as many as seven times, and without losing any of its deodorizing properties.
"If care be taken to cast one service of earth into the pail when first placed in the commode, and to have the commonest regard to cleanliness, not the least offensive smell will be perceptible, though the receptacle remain unemptied for weeks. Care must also be taken, that no liquid, but that which they are intended to receive, be thrown into the pails."
The pail used in the commode is made of galvanized iron, and is shaped very much like an ordinary coal-hod. It has a cover of the same material, and it may be carried from an upper floor with no more offensiveness than a hodful of common earth.
Fig. 70 represents a cross-section of the commode, and will enable the reader more clearly to understand the construction and operation of the apparatus.
a is the opening in the seat; b, the "pan;" c, the pail for receiving the deposit; d, the hopper for containing the earth supply; e, the box by which the earth is measured, and by which it is thrown into the pail when moved to the position e' by the operation of the "pull-up;" f, a door by which the pail is shut in; g, the cover of the seat; h, the cover of the hopper; i a platform which prevents the escape of earth from e.
Under this head, the circular issued by the original London company contains the following:
"The first requirement for the proper working of the earth-closet is earth perfectly dry and sifted. Earth alone is proved to be the best deodorizer, and far superior to any disinfectants; but where it is difficult to obtain earth abundantly, sifted ashes, as before stated, may be mixed with, it in proportion of two of earth to one of ashes.
"As the first requirement is dry earth sifted, and as this is usually thought to be a great difficulty in the way of the adoption of the dry earth system, the following remarks will at once remove such an impression.
"The earth-commode and closet, if used by six persons daily, will require, on an average, about one hundred weight of earth per week. This may be dried for family use in a drawer made to fit under the kitchen range, and which may be filled with earth one morning and left until the next. The drawer should reach to within two inches of the bottom bar of the grate. A frame with a handle, covered with fine wire-netting, forming a kind of shovel, should be placed on this drawer; the finer ashes will fall through, mixing with the earth, whilst the cinders will remain on the top, to be, from time to time, thrown on the fire.
"Of course, the most economical method is to provide in the summer-time a winter store of dry earth, which may be kept in an out-house, shed, or other convenient place, just as we lay in a winter store of coals.
"THINGS TO BE OBSERVED
"Let one fall of earth be in the pail before using. "The earth must be dry and sifted. "Sand must not be used. "No 'slops' must be thrown down. "The handle must be pulled up with a jerk, and let fall sharply."
REPEATED USE OF EARTH
Concerning the value and use of the product of the earth-closet, the following is copied from the London company's circular. (It will be noticed that reference is made, to the repeated use of the same earth. When the ordure is completely dried and decomposed, it has not only lost its odor, but it has become, like all decomposed organic matter, an excellent disinfectant, and the fifth or sixth time that the same earth is passed through the closet it is fully as effective in destroying odors as it was when used for the first time, and of course each use adds to its value as manure, until it becomes as strong as Peruvian guano, which is now worth seventy-five dollars per ton. In fact, it may be made so rich that one hundred pounds will be a good dressing for an acre of land.)
"If the closet is over a water-tight cesspool or pit, it will require emptying at the end of three or six months. The produce, which will be quite inodorous, should be thrown, together in a heap, sheltered from wet, and occasionally turned over. At the end of a few weeks, it will be dry and fit for use.
"If the receptacle be an iron trough or pail, the contents should be thrown together, re-dried, and used over again, four or five times. In a few weeks they will be dry and fit for use; the value being increased by repeated action. The condition of the manure should be much the same as that of guano, and fit for drilling."
The inventor of the earth-closet, Rev. Mr. Moule, says:
"It was to this point (the power of earth or clay to absorb the products of the decomposition of manure) but particularly to the repeated action, and consequently the repeated use of the same earth, that I first directed the attention of the public. I then pointed out: First. That a very small portion of dry and sifted earth (one and a half pints) is sufficient by covering the deposit, to prevent fermentation, (which so soon sets in whenever water is used,) and the consequent generation and emission of noxious gases. Second. That if within a few hours, or even a few days, the mass that would be formed by the repeated layers of deposit, be intimately mixed by a coarse rake or spade, or by a mixer made for the purpose, then, in five or ten minutes, neither to the eye or sense of smell is any thing perceptible but so much earth.... When about three cart-loads of sifted earth had thus been used for my family, (which averaged fifteen persons,) and left under a shed, I found that the material first employed was sufficiently dried to be used again. This process of alternate mixing and drying was renewed five times, the earth still retaining its absorbent powers apparently unimpaired. Of the visitors taken to the spot, none could guess the nature of the compost, though in some cases the heap which they visited in the afternoon had been turned over that same morning ...
"It is only in towns, where the delivery, stowage, and removal of earth is attended with cost and difficulty, that any artificial aid for drying the compost would be desirable. On premises not cramped for space, the atmosphere, especially with a glass roof to the shed, will act sufficiently fast.
"You may by means of it (the earth system) have a privy close to the house and a closet up-stairs, from neither of which shall proceed any offensive smell or any noxious gas. A projection from the back of the cottage, eight feet long and six feet wide, would be amply sufficient for this purpose. The nearer three or four feet down-stairs, would be occupied by the privy, in which, by the seat, would be a receptacle for dry earth. The 'soil' and earth would fall into the further five or four feet, which would form the covered and closed shed for mixing and drying. Up-stairs, the arrangement would be much the same, the deposit being made to fall clear of every wall. Through, this closet the removal of noxious and offensive matters in time of sickness, and of slop-buckets, would be immediate and easy; and if the shed below be kept well supplied with earth, all effluvium would be almost immediately checked. As to the trouble which this will cause, a very little experience will convince the cottager that it is less instead of greater, than the women generally go through at present, while the value of the manure will afford an inducement to exertion.
. . . . . . . . .
"The truth is, that the machinery is more simple, much less expensive, and far less liable to injury than that of the water-closet. The supply of earth to the house is as easy as that of coals. To the closet it may be supplied more easily than water is supplied by a forcing-pump, and to the commode it can be conveyed just as coal is carried to the chamber. After use, it can be removed in either case by the bucket or box placed under the seat, or from the fixed reservoir, with less offense than that of the ordinary slop-bucket—indeed, (I speak after four years' experience,) with as little offense as is found in the removal of coal-ashes. So that, while servants and others will shrink from novelty and at first imagine difficulties, yet many, to my knowledge, would now vastly prefer the daily removal of the bucket or the soil to either the daily working of a forcing-pump or to being called upon once a year, or once in three years, to assist in emptying a vault or cesspool."
To the above complete and convincingly apt arguments and statements of fact, we do not care to add any thing. All that we desire is to direct public attention to the admirable qualities of this Earth System, and to suggest that, at least for those living in the country away from the many conveniences of city life, great water power, and mechanical assistance, the use of it will conduce largely to the economy of families, the health of neighborhoods, and the increasing fertility and prosperity of the country round about.
WARMING AND VENTILATION
There is no department of science, as applied to practical matters, which has so often baffled experimenters as the healthful mode of warming and ventilating houses. The British nation spent over a million on the House of Parliament for this end, and failed. Our own government has spent half a million on the Capitol, with worse failure; and now it is proposed to spend a million more. The reason is, that the old open fireplace has been supplanted by less expensive modes of heating, destructive to health; and science has but just begun experiments to secure a remedy for the evil.
The open fire warms the person, the walls, the floors and the furniture by radiation, and these, together with the fire, warm the air by convection. For the air resting on the heated surfaces is warmed by convection, rises and gives place to cooler particles, causing a constant heating of its particles by movement. Thus in a room with an open fire, the person is warmed in part by radiation from the fire and the surrounding walls and furniture, and in part by the warm air surrounding the body.
In regard to the warmth of air, the thermometer is not an exact index of its temperature. For all bodies are constantly radiating their heat to cooler adjacent surfaces until all come to the same temperature. This being so, the thermometer is radiating its heat to walls and surrounding objects, in addition to what is subtracted by the air that surrounds it, and thus the air is really several degrees warmer than the thermometer indicates. A room at 70 degrees by the thermometer is usually filled with air five or more degrees warmer than this.
Now, the cold air is denser than warm, and therefore contains more oxygen. Consequently, the cooler the air inspired, the larger the supply of oxygen and of the vitality and vigor which it imparts. Thus, the great problem for economy of health is to warm the person as much as possible by radiated heat, and supply the lungs with cool air. For when we breathe air at from 16 to 20 degrees, we take double the amount of oxygen that we do when we inhale it at 80 to 90 degrees, and consequently can do double the amount of muscle and brain work.
Warming by an open fire is nearest to the natural mode of the Creator, who heats the earth and its furniture by the great central fire of heaven, and sends cool breezes for our lungs. But open fires involve great destruction of fuel and expenditure of money, and in consequence economic methods have been introduced to the great destruction of health and life.
Of these methods, the most popular is that by which radiated heat is banished, and all warmth is gained by introducing heated air. This is the method employed in our national Capitol, where both warming and ventilation are attempted by means of fans worked by steam, which force in the heated air. This is an expensive mode, used only for large establishments, and its entire failure at our capitol will probably prevent in future any very extensive use of it.
But the most common mode of warming is by heated air introduced from a furnace. The chief objection to this is the loss of all radiated heat, and the consequent necessity of breathing air which is debilitating both from its heat and also from being usually deprived of the requisite moisture provided by the Creator in all out-door air. Another objection is the fact that it is important to health to preserve an equal circulation of the blood, and the greatest impediment to this is a mode of heating which keeps the head in warmer air than the feet. This is especially deleterious in an age and country where active brains are constantly drawing blood from the extremities to the head. All furnace-heated rooms have coldest air at the feet, and warmest around the head. It is also rarely the case that furnace-heated houses have proper arrangements for carrying off the vitiated air.
There are some recent scientific discoveries that relate to impure air which may properly be introduced here. It is shown by the microscope that fermentation is a process which generates extremely minute plants, that gradually increase till the whole mass is pervaded by this vegetation. The microscope also has revealed the fact that, in certain diseases, these microscopic plants are generated in the blood and other fluids of the body, in a mode similar to the ordinary process of fermentation.
And, what is very curious, each of these peculiar diseases generates diverse kinds of plants. Thus in the typhoid fever, the microscope reveals in the fluids of the patient a plant that resembles in form some kinds of seaweed. In chills and fever, the microscopic plant has another form, and in small-pox still another. A work has recently been published in Europe, in which representations of these various microscopic plants generated in the fluids of the diseased persons are exhibited, enlarged several hundred times by the microscope. All diseases that exhibit these microscopic plants are classed together, and are called Zymotic, from a Greek word signifying to ferment.
These zymotic diseases sometimes have a local origin, as in the case of ague caused by miasma of swamps; and then they are named endemic. In other cases, they are caused by personal contact with the diseased body or its clothing, as the itch or small-pox; or else by effluvia from the sick, as in measles. Such are called contagious or infectious. In other cases, diseases result from some unknown cause in the atmosphere, and affect numbers of people at the same time, as in influenza or scarlet fever, and these are called epidemics.
It is now regarded as probable that most of these diseases are generated by the microscopic plants which float in an impure or miasmatic atmosphere, and are taken into the blood by breathing.
Recent scientific investigations in Great Britain and other countries prove that the power of resisting these diseases depends upon the purity of the air which has been habitually inspired. The human body gradually accommodates itself to unhealthful circumstances, so that people can live a long time in bad air. But the "reserve power" of the body, that is, the power of resisting disease, is under such circumstances gradually destroyed, and then an epidemic easily sweeps away those thus enfeebled. The plague of London, that destroyed thousands every day, came immediately after a long period of damp, warm days, when there was no wind to carry off the miasma thus generated; while the people, by long breathing of bad air, were all prepared, from having sunk into a low vitality, to fall before the pestilence.
Multitudes of public documents show that the fatality of epidemics is always proportioned to the degree in which impure air has previously been respired. Sickness and death are therefore regulated by the degree in which air is kept pure, especially in case of diseases in which medical treatment is most uncertain, as in cholera and malignant fevers.
Investigations made by governmental authority, and by boards of health in this country and in Great Britain, prove that zymotic diseases ordinarily result from impure air generated by vegetable or animal decay, and that in almost all cases they can be prevented by keeping the air pure. The decayed animal matter sent off from the skin and lungs in a close, unventilated bedroom is one thing that generates these zymotic diseases. The decay of animal and vegetable matter in cellars, sinks, drains, and marshy districts is another cause; and the decayed vegetable matter thrown up by plowing up of decayed vegetable matter in the rich soil in new countries is another.
In the investigations made in certain parts of Great Britain, it appeared that in districts where the air is pure the deaths average 11 in 1000 each year; while in localities most exposed to impure miasma, the mortality was 45 in every thousand. At this rate, thirty-four persons in every thousand died from poisoned air, who would have preserved health and life by well-ventilated homes in a pure atmosphere. And, out of all who died, the proportion who owed their deaths to foul air was more than three fourths. Similar facts have been obtained by boards of health in our own country.
Mr. Leeds gives statistics showing, that in Philadelphia, by improved modes of ventilation and other sanitary methods, there was a saving of 3237 lives in two years; and a saving of three fourths of a million of dollars, which would pay the whole expense of the public schools. Philadelphia being previously an unusually cleanly and well-ventilated city, what would be the saving of life, health, and wealth were such a city as New-York perfectly cleansed and ventilated?
Here it is proper to state again that conflicting opinions are found in many writers on ventilation, in regard to the position of ventilating registers to carry off vitiated air. Most writers state that the impure air is heavier, and falls to the bottom of a room. After consulting scientific men extensively on this point, the writer finds the true result to be as follows: Carbonic acid is heavier than common air, and, unmixed, falls to the floor. But by the principle of diffusion of gases, the air thrown from the lungs, though at first it sinks a little, is gradually diffused, and in a heated room, in the majority of cases, it is found more abundantly at the top than at the bottom of the room, though in certain circumstances it is more at the bottom. For this reason, registers to carry off impure air should be placed at both the top and bottom of a room.
In arranging for pure air in dwellings, it is needful to proportion the air admitted and discharged to the number of persons. As a guide to this, we have the following calculation: On an average, every adult vitiates about half a pint of air at each inspiration, and inspires twenty times a minute. This would amount to one hogshead of air vitiated every hour by every grown person. To keep the air pure, this amount should enter and be carried out every hour for each person. If, then, ten persons assemble in a dining-room, ten hogsheads of air should enter and ten be discharged each hour. By the same rule, a gathering of five hundred persons demands the entrance and discharge of five hundred hogsheads of air every hour, and a thousand persons require a thousand hogsheads of air every hour.
In calculating the size of registers and conductors, then, we must have reference to the number of persons who are to abide in a dwelling; while for rooms or halls intended for large gatherings, a far greater allowance must be made.
The most successful mode before the public, both for warming and ventilation, is that of Lewis Leeds, who was employed by government to ventilate the military hospitals and also the treasury building at Washington. This method has been adopted in various school-houses, and also by A. T. Stewart in his hotel for women in New-York City. The Leeds plan embraces the mode of heating both by radiation and convection, very much resembling the open fireplace in operation, and yet securing great economy. It is modeled strictly after the mode adopted by the Creator in warming and ventilating the earth, the home of his great earthly family. It aims to have a passage of pure air through, every room, as the breezes pass over the hills, and to have a method of warming chiefly by radiation, as the earth is warmed by the sun. In addition to this, the air is to be provided with moisture, as it is supplied out-doors by exhalations from the earth, and its trees and plants.
The mode of accomplishing this is by placing coils of steam, or hot water pipes, under windows, which warm the parlor walls and furniture, partly by radiation, and partly by the air warmed on the heated surfaces of the coils. At the same time, by regulating registers, or by simply opening the lower part of the window, the pure air, guarded from immediate entrance into the room, is admitted directly upon the coils, so that it is partially warmed before it reaches the person: and thus cold drafts are prevented. Then the vitiated air is drawn off through registers both at the top and bottom of the room, opening into a heated exhausting flue, through which the constantly ascending current of warm air carries it off. These heated coils are often used for warming houses without any arrangement for carrying off the vitiated air, when, of course, their peculiar usefulness is gone.
The moisture may be supplied by a broad vessel placed on or close to the heated coils, giving a large surface for evaporation. When rooms are warmed chiefly by radiated heat, the air can be borne much cooler than in rooms warmed by hot-air furnaces, just as a person in the radiating sun can bear much cooler air than in the shade. A time will come when walls and floors will be contrived to radiate heat instead of absorbing it from the occupants of houses, as is generally the case at the present time, and then all can breathe pure and cool air.
We are now prepared to examine more in detail the modes of warming and ventilation employed in the dwellings planned for this work.
In doing this, it should be remembered that the aim is not to give plans of houses to suit the architectural taste or the domestic convenience of persons who intend to keep several servants, and care little whether they breathe pure or bad air, nor of persons who do not wish to educate their children to manual industry or to habits of close economy.
On the contrary, the aim is, first, to secure a house in which every room shall be perfectly ventilated both day and night, and that too without the watchful care and constant attention and intelligence needful in houses not provided with a proper and successful mode of ventilation.
The next aim is, to arrange the conveniences of domestic labor so as to save time, and also to render such work less repulsive than it is made by common methods, so that children can be trained to love house-work. And lastly, economy of expense in house-building is sought. These things should be borne in mind in examining the plans of this work.
In the Cottage plan, (Chap II. Fig. 1,) the pure air for rooms on the ground floor is to be introduced by a wooden conductor one foot square, running under the floor from the front door to the stove-room; with cross branches to the two large rooms. The pure air passes through this, protected outside by wire netting, and delivered inside through registers in each room, as indicated in Fig. 1.
In case open Franklin stoves are used in the large rooms, the pure air from the conductor should enter behind them, and thus be partially warmed. The vitiated air is carried off at the bottom of the room through the open stoves, and also at the top by a register opening into a conductor to the exhausting warm-air shaft, which, it will be remembered, is the square chimney, containing the iron pipe which receives the kitchen stove-pipe. The stove-room receives pure air from the conductor, and sends off impure air and the smells of cooking by a register opening directly into the exhausting shaft; while its hot air and smoke, passing through the iron pipe, heat the air of the shaft, and produce the exhausting current. The construction of the exhausting or warm-air shaft is described on page 63.
The large chambers on the second floor (Fig. 12) have pure air conducted from the stove-room through registers that can be closed if the heat or smells of cooking are unpleasant. The air in the stove-room will always be moist from the water of the stove boiler,
The small chambers have pure air admitted from windows sunk at top half an inch; and the warm, vitiated air is conducted by a register in the ceiling which opens into a conductor to the exhausting warm-air shaft at the centre of the house, as shown in Fig. 17.
The basement or cellar is ventilated by an opening into the exhausting air shaft, to remove impure air, and a small opening over each glazed door to admit pure air. The doors open out into a "well," or recess, excavated in the earth before the cellar, for the admission of light and air, neatly bricked up and whitewashed. The doors are to be made entirely of strong, thick glass sashes, and this will give light enough for laundry work; the tubs and ironing-table being placed close to the glazed door. The floor must be plastered with water-lime, and the walls and ceiling be whitewashed, which will add reflected light to the room. There will thus be no need of other windows, and the house need not be raised above the ground. Several cottages have been built thus, so that the ground floors and conservatories are nearly on the same level; and all agree that they are pleasanter than when raised higher.
When a window in any room is sunk at the top, it should have a narrow shelf in front inclined to the opening, so as to keep out the rain. In small chambers for one person, an inch opening is sufficient, and in larger rooms for two persons, a two-inch opening is needed. The openings into the exhausting air flue should vary from eight inches to twelve inches square, or more, according to the number of persons who are to sleep in the room.
The time when ventilation is most difficult is the medium weather in spring and fall, when the air, though damp, is similar in temperature outside and in. Then the warm-air flue is indispensable to proper ventilation. This is especially needed in a room used for school or church purposes.
Every room used for large numbers should have its air regulated not only as to its warmth and purity, but also as to its supply of moisture; and for this purpose will be found very convenient the instrument called the Hygrodeik, [Footnote: It is manufactured by N. M. Lowe, Boston, and sold by him: and J. Queen & Co., Philadelphia.] which shows at once the temperature and the moisture. A work by Dr. Derby on Anthracite Coal, scientific men say has done much mischief by an unproved theory that the discomfort of furnace heat is caused by the passage of carbonic oxide through the iron of the furnace heaters, and not by want of moisture. God made the air right, and taking out its moisture must be wrong.
The preceding remarks illustrate the advantages of the cottage plan in respect to ventilation. The economy of the mode of warming next demands attention. In the first place, it should be noted that the chimney being at the centre of the house, no heat is lost by its radiation through outside walls into open air, as is the case with all fireplaces and grates that have their backs and flues joined to an outside wall.
In this plan, all the radiated heat from the stove serves to warm the walls of adjacent rooms in cold weather; while in the warm season, the non-conducting summer casings of the stove send all the heat not used in cooking either into the exhausting warm-air shaft or into the central cast-iron pipe. In addition to this, the sliding doors of the stove-room (which should be only six feet high, meeting the partition coming from the ceiling) can be opened in cool days, and then the heat from the stove would temper the rooms each side of the kitchen. In hot weather, they could be kept closed except when the stove is used, and then opened only for a short time. The Franklin stoves in the large room would give the radiating warmth and cheerful blaze of an open fire, while radiating heat also from all their surfaces. In cold weather, the air of the larger chambers could be tempered by registers admitting warm air from the stove-room, which would always be sufficiently moistened by evaporation from the stationary boiler. The conservatories in winter, protected from frost by double sashes, would contribute agreeable moisture to the larger rooms. In case the size of a family required more rooms, another story could be ventilated and warmed by the same mode, with little additional expense.
We will next notice the economy of time, labor, and expense secured by this cottage plan. The laundry work being done in the basement, all the cooking, dish-washing, etc., can be done in the kitchen and stove-room on the ground floor. But in case a larger kitchen is needed, the lounges can be put in the front part of the large room, and the movable screen placed so as to give a work-room adjacent to the kitchen, and the front side of the same be used for the eating-room. Where the movable screen is used, the floor should be oiled wood. A square piece of carpet can be put in the centre of the front part of the room, to keep the feet warm when sitting around the table, and small rugs can be placed before the lounges or other sitting-places, for the same purpose.
Most cottages are so divided by entries, stairs, closets, etc., that there can be no large rooms. But in this plan, by the use of the movable screen, two fine large rooms can be secured whenever the family work is over, while the conveniences for work will very much lessen the time required.
In certain cases, where the closest economy is needful, two small families can occupy the cottage, by having a movable screen in both rooms, and using the kitchen in common, or divide it and have two smaller stoves. Each kitchen will then have a window and as much room as is given to the kitchen in great steamers that provide for several hundred.
Whoever plans a house with a view to economy must arrange rooms around a central chimney, and avoid all projecting appendages. Dormer windows are far more expensive than common ones, and are less pleasant. Every addition projecting from a main building greatly increases expense of building, and still more of warming and ventilating.
It should be introduced, as one school exercise in every female seminary, to plan houses with reference to economy of time, labor, and expense, and also with reference to good architectural taste; and the teacher should be qualified to point out faults and give the instruction needed to prevent such mistakes in practical life. Every girl should be trained to be "a wise woman" that "buildeth her house" aright.
There is but one mode of ventilation yet tried, that will, at all seasons of the year and all hours of the day and night, secure pure air without dangerous draughts, and that is by an exhausting warm-air flue. This is always secured by an open fireplace, so long as its chimney is kept warm by any fire. And in many cases, a fireplace with a flue of a certain dimension and height will secure good ventilation except when the air without and within are at the same temperature.
When no exhausting warm-air flue can be used, the opening of doors and windows is the only resort. Every sleeping-room without a fireplace that draws smoke well should have a window raised at the bottom or sunk at the top at least an inch, with an inclined shelf outside or in, to keep out rain, and then it is properly ventilated. Or a door should be kept opened into a hall with an open window. Let the bed-clothing be increased, so as to keep warm in bed, and protect the head also, and then the more air comes into a sleeping-room the better for health.
In reference to the warming of rooms and houses already built, there is no doubt that stoves are the most economical mode, as they radiate heat and also warm by convection. The grand objection to their use is the difficulty of securing proper ventilation. If a room is well warmed by a stove and then a suitable opening made for the entrance of a good supply of out-door air, and by a mode that will prevent dangerous draughts, all is right as to pure air. But in this case, the feet are always on cold floors, surrounded by the coldest air, while the head is in air of much higher temperature.
There is a great difference as to healthfulness and economy in the great variety of stoves with which the market is filled. The competition in this manufacture is so stringent, and so many devices are employed by agents, that there is constant and enormous imposition on the public and an incredible outlay on poor stoves, that soon burn out or break, while they devour fuel beyond calculation. If some benevolent and scientific organization could be formed that would, from disinterested motives, afford some reliable guidance to the public, it probably would save both millions of money and much domestic discomfort.
The stove described in Chapter V. is protected by patents in its chief advantages, but this has not restrained many of the trade from incorporating some of its leading excellencies and claiming to have added superior elements. Others will inform any who inquire for it, that it is out of market, because later stoves have proved superior. Should any who read this work wish to be sure of securing this stove, and also of gaining minute directions for its use, they may apply to the writer, Miss C. E. Beecher, 69 West 38th Street, New-York, inclosing 25 cents.
She will then forward the manufacturers' printed descriptive circulars, and her own advice as to the best selection from the different sizes, and directions for its use, based on her own personal experience and that of many friends. Should any purchases be made through this medium, the manufacturers have agreed to pay a certain percentage into the treasury of the Benevolent Association mentioned at the close of this volume.
There is no more dangerous mode of heating a room than by a gas-stove. There is inevitably more or less leakage of the gas which it is unhealthful to breathe. And proper ventilation is scarcely ever secured by those who use such stoves. The same fatal elements of imperfect ventilation with its attendant horrors of disease, extravagant wastefulness of material, of fuel, of labor, of time, and of destruction to the apparatus itself, seem concomitants of all ordinary stoves and cooking arrangements of the present day, unless those who use them are constant and unremitting in the exercise of intelligent watchfulness, guarding against these evils. And in view of the almost inevitable stupidity and carelessness of servants, who generally have charge of such things, and the frequent thoughtlessness even of intelligent women who manage their own kitchens, the writer believes she is doing a public service by offering her own experience as a guide to simpler, cheaper, and more wholesome means of living and preparing the family food.
CARE OF THE HOMELESS, THE HELPLESS, AND THE VICIOUS.
In considering the duties of the Christian family in regard to the helpless and vicious classes, some recently developed facts need to be considered. We have stated that the great end for which, the family was instituted is the training to virtue and happiness of our whole race, as the children of our Heavenly Father, and this with chief reference to their eternal existence after death. In the teachings of our Lord we find that it is for sinners—for the lost and wandering sheep, that he is most tenderly concerned. It is not those who by careful training and happy temperaments have escaped the dangers of life that God and good angels most anxiously watch. "For there is more joy in heaven over one sinner that repenteth than over ninety and nine that went not astray."
The hardest work of all is to restore a guilty, selfish, hardened spirit to honor, truth, and purity; and this is the divine labor to which the pitying Saviour calls all his true followers; to lift up the fallen, to sustain the weak, to protect the tempted, to bind up the broken-hearted, and especially to rescue the sinful. This is the peculiar privilege of woman in the sacred retreat of a "Christian home." And it is for such self-denying ministries that she is to train all who are under her care and influence, both by her teaching and by her example.
In connection with these distinctive principles of Christ for which the family state was instituted, let the following facts be considered. The Massachusetts Board of State Charities, consisting of some of the most benevolent and intelligent gentlemen of that State, in pursuance of their official duty visited all the State institutions, and held twenty-five meetings during the year 1867-8. By these visits and consequent discussions they arrived at certain conclusions, which may be briefly condensed as follows.
No state or nation excels Massachusetts in a wise and generous care of the helpless, poor, and vicious. The agents employed for this end are frugal, industrious, intelligent, and benevolent men and women, with high moral principles. The pauper and criminal classes requiring to be cared for by Massachusetts are less in proportion to the whole number of inhabitants than in any other state or nation. Yet, admirable as are these comparative results, there is room for improvement in a most important particular. The report of the Board urges that the present mode of collecting special classes in great establishments, though it may be the best in a choice of evils, is not the best method for the physical, social, and moral improvement of those classes; as it involves many unfortunate influences (which are stated at large:) and the report suggests that a better way would be to scatter these unfortunates from temporary receiving asylums into families of Christian people all over the State.
It is suggested in view of the above, that collecting fallen women into one large community is not the best way to create a pure moral atmosphere; and that gathering one or two hundred children in one establishment is not so good for them as to give each child a home in some loving Christian family. So of the aged and the sick, the blessings of a quiet home, and the tender, patient nursing of true Christian love, must be sought in a Christian family; not in a great asylum.
In view of these important facts and suggestions, it may be inquired, if the great end and aim of the family state is to train the inmates to self-denying love and labor for the weak, the suffering, and the sinful, how can it be done where there are no young children, no aged persons, no invalids, and no sinful ones for whom such sacrifices are to be made?
Why are orphan children thrown upon the world, why are the aged held in a useless, suffering life, except that they may aid in cultivating tender love and labor for the helpless, and reverence for the hoary head? And yet, how few children are trained thus to regard the orphan, the aged, the helpless, and the vicious around them!
Great houses are built for these destitute ones, and all the labor and self-denial in taking care of them is transferred to paid agents, while thousands of families are thus deprived of all opportunity to cultivate the distinctive virtues of the Christian household.
In this connection, let us look at some facts recently published in the city of New-York.
The writer, Rev. W. O. Van Meter, says in his report:
"The following astounding statistics are carefully selected from the Reports of the Police, Board of Health, Citizens' Association, and more than twelve years' personal experience."
He then gives the following description of a section of the city only a few rods from the stores and residences of those who count their wealth by hundreds of thousands and millions, many of them professing to be followers of Christ:
"First, we see old sheds, stable lofts, dilapidated buildings, too worthless to be repaired, lofts over warehouses and shops; cellars, too worthless for business purposes, and too unhealthy for horses or pigs, and therefore occupied by human beings at high rent.—Second, houses erected for tenant purposes. Take one near our Mission, as a fair specimen of the better class of 'model' tenant houses. It contains one hundred and twenty-six families—is entered at the sides from alleys eight feet wide; and by reason of another barrack of equal height, the rooms are so darkened, that on a cloudy day it is impossible to sew in them without artificial light. It has not one room that can be thoroughly ventilated.
"The vaults and sewers which are to carry off the filth of one hundred and twenty-six families have grated openings in the alleys, and doorways in the cellars, through which the deadly miasma penetrates and poisons the air of the house and courts. The water-closets for the whole vast establishment are a range of stalls, without doors, and accessible not only from the building, but even from the street. Comfort here is out of the question; common decency impossible, and the horrid brutalities of the passenger-ship are day after day repeated, but on a larger scale.
"In similar dwellings are living five hundred and ten thousand persons, (nearly one half of the inhabitants of the city,) chiefly from the laboring classes, of very moderate means, and also the uncounted thousands of those who do not know to-day what they shall have to live on to-morrow. This immense population is found chiefly in an area of less than four square miles. The vagrant and neglected children among them would form a procession in double file eight miles long from the Battery to Harlem.
"In the Fourth ward, the tenant-house population is crowded at the rate of two hundred and ninety thousand inhabitants to the square mile. Such packing was probably never equaled in any other city. Were the buildings occupied by these miserable creatures removed, and the people placed by each other, there would be but one and two ninths of a square yard for each, and this unparalleled packing is increasing. Two hundred and twenty-four families in the ward live below the sidewalk, many of them below high-water mark. Often in very high tide they are driven from their cellars or lie in bed until the tide ebbs. Not one half of the houses have any drain or connection with the sewer. The liquid refuse is emptied on the sidewalk or into the street, giving forth sickening exhalations, and uniting its fetid streams with others from similar sources. There are more than four hundred families in this ward whose homes can only be reached by wading through a disgusting deposit of filthy refuse. 'In one tenant-house one hundred and forty-six were sick with small-pox, typhus fever, scarlatina, measles, marasmus, phthisis pulmonalis, dysentery, and chronic diarrhea. In another, containing three hundred and forty-nine persons, one in nineteen died during the year, and on the day of inspection, which was during the most healthy season of the year, there were one hundred and fifteen persons sick! In another (in the Sixth Ward, but near us,) are sixty-five families; seventy-seven persons were sick or diseased at the time of inspection, and one in four always sick. In fifteen of these families twenty-five children were living, thirty-seven had died.'
"Here are found the lowest class of sailor boarding-houses, dance- houses, and dens of infamy. There are less than two dwelling-houses for each rum-hole. Here are the poorest, vilest, most degraded, and desperate representatives of all nations. In the homes of thousands here, a ray of sunlight never shines, a flower never blooms, a bird song is never heard, a breath of pure air never breathed." A procession of vagrant and neglected children that in double file would reach eight miles, living in such filth, vice, and unhealthful pollution; all of them God's children, all Christ's younger brethren, to save whom he humbled himself, even to the shameful death of the cross!
Meantime, the city of New York has millions of wealth placed in the hands of men and women who profess to be followers of Jesus Christ, and to have consecrated themselves, their time, and their wealth to his service. And they daily are passing and repassing within a stone's throw of the streets where all this misery and sin are accumulated!
So in all our large cities and towns all over the land are found similar, if not so extensive, collections of vice and misery. And even where there are not such extremes of degradation, there are contrasts of condition that should "give us pause." For example, in the vicinity of our large towns and cities will be seen spacious mansions inhabited by professed followers of Jesus Christ, each surrounded by ornamented grounds. Not far from them will be seen small tenement-houses, abounding with children, each house having about as many square yards of land as the large houses have square acres. In the small tenements, the boys rise early and go forth with the father to work from eight to ten hours, with little opportunity for amusement or for reading or study. In the large houses, the boys sleep till a late breakfast, then lounge about till school-time, then spend three hours in school, stimulating brain and nerves. Then home to a hearty dinner, and then again to school.
So with the girls: in the tenement-houses, they, go to kitchens and shops to work most of the day, with little chance for mental culture or the refinements of taste. In the large mansions, the daughters sleep late, do little or no labor for the family, and spend their time in school, or in light reading, ornamental accomplishments, or amusement.
Thus one class are trained to feel that they are a privileged few for whom others are to work, while they do little or nothing to promote the improvement or enjoyment of their poorer neighbors.
Then, again, labor being confined chiefly to the unrefined and uncultivated, is disgraced and rendered unattractive to the young. One class is overworked, and the body deteriorates from excess. The other class overwork the brain and nerves, and the neglected muscles grow thin, flabby, and weak.
Notice also the style in which they accumulate the elegances of civilization without even an attempt to elevate their destitute neighbors to such culture and enjoyment. Their expensive pictures multiply on their frescoed walls, their elegant books increase in their closed bookcases, their fine pictures and prints remain shut in portfolios, to be only occasionally opened by a privileged few. Their handsome equipages are for the comfortable and prosperous—not for the feeble and poor who have none of their own. All their social amusements are exclusive, and their expensive entertainments are for those only who can return the same to them.
Our Divine Master thus teaches, "When thou makest a feast, call not thy kinsmen or thy rich neighbors, lest they also bid thee again, and a recompense he made thee. But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, for they can not recompense thee; for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just." Again, our Lord, after performing the most servile office, taught thus: "If I, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, ye ought to wash one another's feet."
In all these large towns and cities are women of wealth and leisure, who profess to be followers of Jesus Christ. Some of them, having property in their own right, live in large mansions, with equipage and servants demanding a large outlay. They travel abroad, and gather around themselves the elegant refinements of foreign lands. They give, perhaps, a tenth of their time and income (which is far less than was required of the Jews), for benevolent purposes, and then think and say that they have consecrated themselves and all they have to the service of Christ.
If there is any thing plainly taught in the New Testament it is, that the followers of Christ are to be different and distinct from the world around them; "a peculiar people," and subject to opposition and ill-will for their distinctive peculiarities.
Of these peculiarities demanded, humility and meekness are conspicuous: "Come and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly, and ye shall find rest." Now, the grand aim of the rich, worldly, and ambitious is to be at least equal, or else to rise higher than others, in wealth, honor, and position. This is the great struggle of humanity in all ages, especially in this country, and among all classes, to rise higher—to be as rich or richer than others—to be as well dressed—to be more learned, or in more honored positions than others. This was the very thing that made contention among the apostles, even in the company of their Lord, as they walked and "disputed who should be the greatest." "And Jesus sat down and called the twelve, and said unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last and servant of all;" and "he that is least among you shall be great."
At another time, the ambitious mother of two disciples came and asked that her sons might have the highest place in his kingdom, and the other disciples were "moved with indignation." Then the Lord taught them that the honor and glory of his kingdom was to be exactly the reverse of this world; and that whoever would be great must be a minister, and who would be chief must be a servant; even as the Son of Man came not to be ministered to, but to minister.
Again, he rebuked the love of high position and the desire of being counted wise as teachers of others: "Be not ye called Rabbi, neither be ye called Master; but he that is greatest among you shall be your servant, and whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased."
Then, as to the strife after wealth, into which all are now rushing so earnestly, the Lord teaches: "Lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth. Whosoever of you forsaketh not all that he hath can not be my disciple. Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves with bags that wax not old—a treasure in heaven that faileth not." To the rich young man, asking how to gain eternal life, the reply was, "Sell all thou hast, and give to the poor, and come and follow me." When the poor widow cast in all her living she was approved. When the first Christians were "filled with the Holy Ghost," they sold all their possessions, to be distributed to those that had need, and were approved.
And nowhere do we find any direction or approval of laying up money for self or for children. A man is admonished to provide sustenance and education for his family, but never to lay up money for them; and the history of the children of the rich is a warning that, even in a temporal view, the chances are all against the results of such use of property. We are to spend all to save the world; For this we are to labor and sacrifice ease and wealth, and we are to train children to the same self-sacrificing labors; All that is spent for earthly pleasure ends here. Nothing goes into the future world as a good secured but training our own and other immortal minds. Thus only can we lay up treasures in heaven.
There is a crisis at hand in the history of individuals, of the church, and of our nation, which must inaugurate a new enterprise to save "the whole world." There must be something coming in the Christian churches more consistent, more comprehensive, more in keeping with the command of our ascending Lord—"Go ye (all my followers) into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature; he that believeth shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned!"
It is in hope and anticipation of such a "revival" of the true, self-denying spirit of Christ and of his earnest followers, that plans have been drawn for simple modes of living, in which both labor and economy may be practiced for benevolent ends, and yet without sacrificing the refinements of high civilization. One method is exhibited in the first chapters, adapted to country residence. In what follows will be presented a plan for a city home, having the same aim.
The chief points are to secure economy of labor and time by the selection and close packing of conveniences, and also economy of health by a proper mode of warming and ventilation. In this connection will be indicated opportunities and modes that thus may be attained for aiding to save the vicious, comfort the suffering, and instruct the ignorant. Fig. 71 is the ground plan, of a city tenement occupying two lots of twenty-two feet front, in which there can be no side windows; as is the case with most city houses. There are two front and two back-parlors, each twenty feet square, with a bedroom and kitchen appended to each: making four complete sets of living-rooms. A central hall runs from basement to roof, and is lighted by skylights. There is also a ventilating recess running from basement to roof with whitened walls, and windows opening into it secure both light and air to the bedrooms. On one end of this recess is a trash-flue closed with a door in the basement, and opening into each story, which must be kept closed to prevent an upward draught, causing dust and light articles to rise. At the other end is a dumb-waiter, running from cellar to roof, and opening into the hall of each story. Four chimneys are constructed near the centre of the house, one for each suite of rooms, to receive a smoke-pipe of cast-iron or terra cotta, as described previously, with a space around it for warm air; and this serves as the exhausting-shaft to carry off the vitiated air from parlors, kitchens, bedrooms, and water-closets. In each kitchen is a stove such as is described in Chapter IV., its pipe connecting with the central cast-iron or terra cotta pipe. The stove can be inclosed by sliding doors shutting off the heat in warm weather. These kitchen stoves, and a large stove in the basement to warm the central hall, would suffice for all the rooms, except in the coldest months, when a small terra cotta stove, made for this purpose, or even an ordinary iron stove, placed by one window in each of the parlors, would give the additional heat needed; while fresh air could be admitted from the windows behind the stove, and thus be partially warmed.
This exhibits the essential feature and peculiarity of Mr. Leeds's system of ventilation, before described. Fresh air, admitted at the bottom of a slightly raised window, is to enter below a window-seat which projects over the stove; the air being thus warmed before entering the room. The flue of the stove is seen (in the finished corner of Fig. 71, which is a model for the four other suites of rooms on each floor) running along the wall to the front chimney, which also receives the corresponding stove-flue from the nearest window in the adjoining parlor: the same arrangement being repeated at the back of the house. This, the two front and back chimneys are for the heating and ventilating parlor stoves; the four central chimneys for cooking, heating, and ventilation.
When possible, in a large building, steam generated in the basement heater will be found better than the parlor stove. In this case, the room will be heated by the coil of steam-pipe mentioned before; the slab covering it being the window-seat, or guard, under which the cool fresh air is conducted to be warmed before passing into the room.
Fig. 72 shows one side of the parlor, giving a series of sliding- doors, behind which are hooks, shelves, and "shelf-boxes," as described earlier in the book.
The recess occupied by the sofa stands between these two closets. In case the room is used for sleeping, the double couch on page 30 might be substituted for the sofa, serving as a lounge by day, and two single beds by night. The curtain hanging above can be so fastened by rings on a strong semi-circular wire as to be let down while dressing and undressing, as is done in some of our steamboats. Pockets and hooks on the inside of the curtains may be made very useful.
Fig. 73 represents another side of the same room where are two large windows, each having a cushioned seat in its recess, (although one may be occupied by a stove, as described above.) A study-table with drawers or both the front and back sides furnishes large accommodations for many small articles.
Fig. 74 represents a third side of the same room, with sliding doors glazed from top to bottom to give light to the bedroom and kitchen.
The fourth side appears on the ground plan (Fig. 71.) The ottomans and a few chairs will complete the needful furniture.
By means of forms, shelves, and shelf-boxes, the kitchen, could hold all stores and implements for cooking and setting tables, on the method shown page 34. The eating table is close to the kitchen and sink, so that few steps are required to bring and remove every article. Thus stove, sink, cooking materials, the table and its furniture, are all in close proximity, and yet, when the inmates are seated at table, the sliding-doors will shut out the kitchen, while the bad air and smells of cooking are earned off by the ventilating exhaust-shaft.
The bedroom has a bath-tub and water-closet. The tub need not be more than four feet long, and a half-cover raised by a hinge will, when down, hold wash-bowl and pitcher, when the tub is not in use. Around the bedroom high and wide shelves and shelf-boxes near the ceiling serve to store large articles; and narrower shelves with pegs under them for clothing, protected by a curtain, furnish other conveniences for storage. The trash-flue serves to send off rubbish, with but few steps, and the dumb waiter brings up fuel, stores, etc. Each bedroom must be provided with a ventilating register at the top, connecting with the warm foul-air flue in the chimney.
For a family of four persons, one parlor, with its kitchen and bedroom, couches and side closets, would supply all needful accommodations. For a larger family, sliding-doors into the adjacent parlor, its appended kitchen being arranged for another bedroom, would accommodate a family of ten persons.
A front and a back entrance may be in the basement, which, can be used for family stores, each family having one room. A general laundry with drying closets could be provided in the attic, and lighted from the roof.
Such a building, four stories high, would accommodate sixteen families of four members, or eight larger families, and provide light, warmth, ventilation, and more comforts and conveniences than are usually found in most city houses built for only one family. Here young married persons with frugal and benevolent tastes could commence housekeeping in a style of comfort and good taste rarely excelled in mansions of the rich. The spaces usually occupied by stairs, entries, closets, etc., would on this plan be thrown into fine large airy rooms, with every convenience close at hand.
In one of our large cities is to be found a Christian lady who inherited a handsome establishment with means to support it in the style common to the rich. In the spirit of Christ she "sold all that she had, and gave to the poor," by establishing a Home for Incurables, and making her home with them, giving her time and wealth to promoting their temporal comfort and spiritual welfare. Was this doing more than her duty—more than the example and teachings of Christ require?
Suppose several ladies of similar views and character in one city, having only moderate wealth, and leisure, unite to erect such a building as the one described, in a light and healthful part of the city of New York, and then should take up their residence in it, and from the vast accumulation of misery and sin at hand on every side, should select the orphans, the aged, the sick, and the sinful, and spend time and money for their temporal and spiritual elevation; would they do more than the example and teachings of Christ enjoin? Or would their enjoyment, even in this life, be diminished by exchanging a routine chiefly of personal gratification for such self-denying ministries? It was "for the joy that was set before Him" through the everlasting ages that our Lord "endured the cross," and it is to the same supernal glories that he invites his followers, and by the same path he trod.
Here it probably will be said that all rich women can not do what is here suggested, owing to multitudinous claims, or to incapacity of mind or body for carrying out such an attempt. It will also be said that there are many other ways for practicing self-denial besides selling our homes and taking a humbler style of living. This is all true. But we are told that there are "greatest" and "least" in that kingdom of heaven where the chief happiness is in living to serve others, and not for self. Those who can not change their expensive style of living, and are obliged to spend most of their thoughts and wealth on self and those who are a part of self, will be among the least and lowest in happiness and honor, while those who take the low places on earth to raise others will be the happiest and most honored in the kingdom of heaven.
There are many residences in our large cities where women claiming to be Christ's followers live in almost solitary grandeur till the warm season, and then shut them up to spend their time at watering-places or country resorts. The property invested in such city establishments, and the income required to keep them up, would secure "Christian homes" to many suffering, neglected, homeless children of Christ, who are living in impure air, with all the debasing influences found in city tenement-houses. Meantime, the owners of this wealth are suffering in mind and body for want of some grand and noble object in life. If such could not personally live in such an establishment as is here described, by self-denying arrangements and combination with others they could provide and superintend one.
Our minds are created in the image of our Father in heaven, and capable of being made happy, as his is, by the outpouring of blessings on others. And when we are invited by our divine Lord to take his yoke and bear his burden, it is for our own highest happiness as well as for the good of others. And whoever truly obeys finds the yoke easy and the burden light, and that they bring rest to the soul. But those who shrink from the true good, to live a life of self-indulgent ease, will surely find that mere earthly enjoyments pall on the taste, that they perish in the using, that they never satisfy the cravings of a soul created for a higher sphere and nobler mission.
The Bible represents that there is an emergency-a great conflict in the world unseen-and that we on earth, who are Christ's people, are to take a part in this conflict and in the "fellowship of his sufferings," to redeem his children from the slavery of sin and eternal death; and there is the same call to labor and sacrifice now as there was when he commanded, "Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature."
But is not the larger part of the church—especially those who have wealth—practically living on no higher principles than the pious Jews and virtuous heathen? Are they not living just as if there were no great emergency, no terrible risks and danger to their fellow-men in the life to, come? Are they not living just as if all men were safe after they leave this world, and all we need to aim at is to make ourselves and others virtuous and happy in this life, without disturbing anxiety about the life to come? And is the training of most Christian families diverse from that of pious Jews, in reference to the dangers of our fellow-men in the future state, and the consequent duty of labor and sacrifice in order to extend the true religion all over the earth?
One mode of avoiding self-denial in style of living is by the plea that, if all rich Christiana gave up the expensive establishments common to this class and adopted such economies as are here suggested, it would tend to lower civilization and take away support from those living by the fine arts. But while the world is rushing on to such profuse expenditure, will not all these elegancies and refinements be abundantly supported, and is there as much danger in this direction as there is of avoiding the self-denying example of Christ and his early followers? They gave up all they had, and "were scattered abroad, preaching the word;" and was there any reason existing then for self-denying labor that does not exist now? There are more idolaters and more sinful men now, in actual numbers, than there were then; while teaching them the way of eternal life does not now, as it did then, involve the "loss of all things" and "deaths often."
Moreover, would not the fine arts, in the end, he better supported by imparting culture and refined tastes to the neglected ones? Teaching industry, thrift, and benevolence is far better than scattering alms, which often do more harm than good; and would not enabling the masses to enjoy the fine arts and purchase in a moderate style subserve the interests of civilization as truly as for the rich to accumulate treasures for themselves in the common exclusive style?
Suppose some Protestant lady of culture and fortune should unite with an associate of congenial taste and benevolence to erect such a building as here described, and then devote her time and wealth to the elevation and salvation of the sinful and neglected, would she sacrifice as much as does a Lady of the Sacred Heart or a Sister of Charity, many of whom have been the daughters of princes and nobles? They resign to their clergy and superiors not only the control of their wealth but their time, labor, and conscience. In doing this, the Roman Catholic lady is honored and admired as a saint, while taught that she is doing more than her duty, and is thus laying up a store of good works to repay for her own past deficiencies, and also to purchase grace and pardon for humbler sinners. If this is really believed, how soothing to a wounded conscience! And what a strong appeal to generous and Christian feeling! And the more terrific the pictures of purgatory and hell, the stronger the appeal to these humane and benevolent principles.
But how would it be with the Protestant woman practicing such self-denial? For example, the lady of wealth and culture, who gave up her property and time to provide a home for incurables—would her pastor say she was doing more than her duty? and if not, would he preach to other rich women who, in other ways, could humble themselves to raise up the poor, the ignorant, and the sinful, that they are doing less than their duty?
Is it not sometimes the case, that both minister and people, by example, at least, seem to teach that, the more riches increase, the less demand there is for economy, labor, and self-denial for the benefit of the destitute and the sinful?
Protestants are little aware of the strong attractions which, are drawing pious and benevolent women toward the Roman Catholic Church, To the poor and neglected: in humble life are offered a quiet home, with sympathy, and honored work. To the refined and ambitious are offered the best society and high positions of honor and trust. To the sinful are offered pardon for past offenses and a fresh supply of "grace" for all acts of penitence or of benevolence. To the anxiously conscientious, perplexed with contentions as to doctrines and duties, are offered an infallible pope and clergy to decide what is truth and. duty, and what is the true interpretation of the Bible, while they are taught that the "faith" which saves the soul is implicit belief in the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. All this enables many, even of the intelligent, to receive the other parts of a system that contradicts both common sense and the Bible.
Meantime, a highly educated priesthood, with no family ties to distract attention, are organizing and employing devoted, self-denying women, all over the land, to perform the distinctive work that Protestant women, if wisely trained and organized by their clergy, could carry out in thousands of scattered Christian homes and villages.
In the Protestant churches, women are educated only to be married; and when not married, there is no position provided which is deemed as honorable as that of a wife. But in the Roman Catholic Church, the unmarried woman who devotes herself to works of Christian benevolence is the most highly honored, and has a place of comfort and respectability provided which is suited to her education and capacity. Thus come great nunneries, with lady superiors to control conscience and labor and wealth.
But a time is coming when the family state is to be honored and ennobled by single women, qualified to sustain it by their own industries; women who will both support and train the children of their Lord and Master in the true style of Protestant independence, controlled by no superior but Jesus Christ. And in the Bible they will find the Father of the faithful, to both Jews and Gentiles, their great exemplar. For nearly one hundred years Abraham had no child of his own; but his household, whom he trained to the number of three hundred and eighteen, were children of others. And he was the friend of God, chosen to be father of many nations, because he would "command his household to do justice and judgment and keep the way of the Lord."
The woman who from true love consents to resign her independence and be supported by another, while she bears children and trains them for heaven, has a noble mission; but the woman who earns her own independence that she may train the neglected children of her Lord and Saviour has a still higher one. And a day is coming when Protestant women will be trained for this their highest ministry and profession as they never yet have been.
THE CHRISTIAN NEIGHBORHOOD.
The spirit of Christian missions to heathen lands and the organizations to carry them forward commenced, in most Protestant lands, within the last century. The writer can remember the time when an annual collection for domestic missions was all the call for such benefactions in a wealthy New-England parish; while such small pittances were customary that the sight of a dollar-bill in the collection, even from the richest men of the church-members, produced a sensation.
In the intervening period since that time, the usual mode of extending the Gospel among the heathen has been for a few of the most self-sacrificing men and women to give up country and home and all the comforts and benefits of a Christian community, and then commence the family state amid such vice and debasement that it was ruinous to children to be trained in its midst. And so the result has been, in multitudes of cases, that children were born only to be sent from parents to be trained by strangers, and the true "Christian family" could not be exhibited in heathen lands. And as a Christian neighborhood, in its strictest sense, consists of a collection of Christian families, such a community has been impossible in most cases among the heathen.
When our Lord ascended, his last command was "Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature." For ages, most Christian people have supposed this command was limited to the apostles. In the present day, it has been extended to Include a few men and women, who should practice the chief labor and self-sacrifice, while most of the church lived at ease, and supposed they were obeying this command, by giving a small portion of their abundance to support those who performed the chief labor and self-sacrifice.
But a time is coming when Christian churches will under stand this command in a much more comprehensive sense; and the "Christian family" and "Christian neighborhood" will be the grand ministry of salvation. In order to assist in making this a practicable anticipation, some additional drawings are given in this chapter. The aim is to illustrate one mode of commencing a Christian neighborhood that is so economical and practical that two or three ladies, with very moderate means, could carry it out.
A small church, a school-house, and a comfortable family dwelling may all be united in one building, and for a very moderate sum, as will be illustrated by the following example.
At the head of the first chapter is a sketch which represents a perspective view of the kind of edifice indicated. On the opposite page (Fig. 75) is an enlarged and more exact view of the front elevation of the same, which is now building in one of the most Southern States, where tropical plants flourish. The three magnificent trees on the drawing heading the first chapter are live-oaks adorned with moss, rising over one hundred feet high and being some thirty or more feet in circumference. Nearly under their shadow is the building to be described.
Fig. 76 is the ground plan, which includes one large room twenty-five feet wide and thirty-five feet long, having a bow window at one end, and a kitchen at the other end. The bow-window has folding-doors, closed during the week, and within is the pulpit for Sunday service. The large room may be divided either by a movable screen or by sliding doors with a large closet on either side. The doors make a more perfect separation; but the screen affords more room for storing family conveniences, and also secured more perfect ventilation for the whole large room by the exhaust-flue.
Thus, through the week, the school can be in one division, and the other still a sizable room, and the kitchen be used for teaching domestic economy and also for the eating-room. Oil Sunday, if there is a movable screen, it can be moved back to the fireplace; or otherwise, the sliding—doors may be opened, giving the whole space to the congregation. The chimney is finished off outside as a steeple. It incloses a cast-iron or terra cotta pipe, which receives the stove-pipe of the kitchen and also pipes connecting the two fireplaces with the large pipe, and finds exit above the slats of the steeple at the projections. Thus the chimney is made an exhaust shaft for carrying off vitiated air from all the rooms both above and below, which have openings into it made for the purpose.
Two good-sized chambers are over the large lower story, as shown in Fig. 77. Large closets are each side of these chambers, where are slatted openings to admit pure air; and under these openings are registers placed to enable pure air to pass through the floor into the large room below. Thus a perfect mode of ventilation is secured for a large number.