'Christoph, I wish you would let me have that book of manuscript music which you have in your cupboard—the one which contains pieces by Pachelbel, and Frohberger, and Buxtehude, and ever so many others—you know which I mean. I will take such care of it if you will only lend it to me for a little while.'
Christoph was about to leave the room, but he turned sharply to his little brother as the latter put his request.
'No, Sebastian, I will certainly not lend you the book, and I wonder that you have the impertinence to ask me such a thing! The idea of your thinking that you could study such masters as Buxtehude and Frohberger—a child like you! Get on with what I have set you to learn, and do not let me hear any more of such fancies!'
With that Christoph shut the door behind him, and Sebastian was left to ponder sadly upon his elder brother's harshness in refusing to accede to his simple request. The disappointment was very keen, for little Sebastian had been longing to get possession of that precious volume. For several days past he had spent hours in his brother's absence gazing at its covers through the lattice doors of the cupboard, and feasting his eyes upon the names of the musicians which were written on the back in bold letters in Christoph's hand.
Bach copying from his brothers book which he 'borrowed'
Then, taking his pen and some manuscript music-paper with which he had provided himself, he began his task of copying out the pieces contained in the book.
An hour or more slipped away in this absorbing occupation, and it was not until the moon had shifted her position, so that her rays no longer afforded the necessary light, that Sebastian ceased to ply his pen. Then, having hidden the book away and removed all traces of his work, the now wearied little musician sought his pillow and fell fast asleep.
With his mouth curved into a cruel smile, Christoph seized the manuscript book and the copy, and, taking them from the room, hid them away in a new place where Sebastian could not possibly find them
Lüneburg possessed two schools, attached respectively to the Churches of St. Michael and St. John, and the rivalry between the two was so keen that when, as was the custom during the winter months, the scholars were sent out to sing in the streets in order to collect money for their support, the respective routes to be traversed had to be carefully marked out so as to prevent a collision.
Johann Sebastian Bach
The King next requested him to play a six-part fugue, and Bach extemporised one on a theme selected by himself. The King, who stood behind the composer's chair, clapped his hands with delight, and exclaimed repeatedly, 'Only one Bach! Only one Bach!' It was a visit replete with honours for the old master, and when he returned home he expressed his gratitude by writing down and elaborating the piece which he had composed on the King's theme, dedicating it to His Majesty under the title of 'Musikalisches Opfer' (Musical Offering), and sending it to Potsdam with a letter begging its acceptance.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Handel's birthplace, Halle, Saxony.
George Frederick Handel, as the boy was named, was the son of a surgeon of Halle, Lower Saxony, in which town the child was born on February 23, 1685. Even before he could speak little George had shown a remarkable fondness for music, and the only toys he cared for were such as were capable of producing musical sounds. With this love for music, however, the father showed no sympathy whatever; he regarded the art with contempt, as something beneath the serious notice of one who aspired to be a gentleman, and that his child should have expressed an earnest desire to be taught to play only served to make him angry.
George Frederick Handel
For some time this secret practising continued without arousing suspicion on the part of the other inmates of the house. One night, however, when the child had resorted to his favourite spot, he was suddenly missed by those below, and, as it was known that he had been sent to bed, some fears were felt as to what could have become of him. The servants were summoned, but could give no account of him; the father was fetched from his study, whither he had retired, and a search began. The alarm increased when it was ascertained that the child was in none of the living-rooms of the house, and it was decided that the garrets and lofts must be searched. Calling for a lantern, the surgeon ascended the stairs leading to the lumber-room; it was possible that the boy might have found his way thither on some childish expedition, and there fallen asleep. Great was the father's surprise, on reaching the top-most landing, to hear faint musical sounds proceeding from behind the closed door. Noiselessly retracing his steps, he summoned the rest of the household, and then, ascending the stairs in a body, they paused outside to listen. Sure enough the old garret was full of melodic sounds! Now near, now far off, they seemed to the listeners to be wafted from another world; there was something uncanny about it, and the maids gazed into each other's faces with a scared expression, as the master softly lifted the latch, and, having peeped into the room, beckoned silently to the rest to follow him.
One day, when Handel was seven years old, his father announced his intention of paying a visit to the castle of the Duke of Saxe-Weissenfels. Handel was most anxious to be allowed to accompany his father, because he had heard that the Duke kept a great company of musicians to perform in his chapel. But the father refused his consent, and the boy turned away with a look of fixed determination in his eyes. 'I will go, even if I have to run every inch of the way!'
Handel did not know then that forty miles lay between his home and the castle, but having formed his bold resolution he awaited the moment when his father set forth on his journey, and then, running behind the closed carriage, he did his best to keep pace with it. The roads were long and muddy, and although he panted on bravely for a long distance, the child's strength began at last to fail, and, fearing that he would be left behind, he called to the coachman to stop. At the sound of the boy's voice his father thrust his head out of the window, and was about to give vent to his anger at George's disobedience; but a glance at the poor little bedraggled figure in the road, with its pleading face, melted the surgeon's heart. They were at too great a distance from home to turn back, and so Handel was lifted into the carriage and carried to Weissenfels, where he arrived tired and footsore, but supremely happy at having won his point.
On several occasions after this the organist came to the chapel on purpose to listen to Handel as the latter played, and he was so struck by the boy's genius that he determined to surprise the Duke by letting Handel play His Highness out of chapel. Accordingly, on the following Sunday, when the service was concluded, the organist lifted Handel on to the organ-stool, and desired him to play.
The Duke and his friends had risen to their feet as Handel began to play, but the Duke instantly detected a difference in the playing, and, glancing towards the organ-loft, he was astonished to behold the figure of a child bending over the keys. But as he listened his astonishment became greater, for it was no longer the child's figure that arrested his attention, but the melody which was pouring forth from the instrument. Instead of walking out of the chapel, the Duke remained standing where he had risen, with his gaze riveted upon the child player, and of course the members of the household likewise kept their places. At length, when Handel ceased to play, the Duke turned to those about him with the inquiry: 'Who is that child? Does anybody know his name?' As no one present seemed to know, the organist was sent for to explain matters. After a few words from this official the Duke commanded that Handel should be brought before him. When the boy appeared he patted him on the head, and praised his performance, telling him that he was sure that he would make a good musician.
Ferdinand de Lesseps
Dredges at work in the Suez Canal
Description of first trip in the car
When I got this car ready to run one night, I took it out and I had a young fellow with me; I thought I might need him to help push in case the car didn't work…. We ran from the area of the shop where it was built down on Taylor Street. We started out and ran up Worthington Street hill, on top of what you might call "the Bluff" in Springfield. Then we drove along over level roads from there to the home of Mr. Markham , and there we refilled this tank with water. [At this point he was asked if it was pretty well emptied by then.] Yes, I said in my account of it that when we got up there the water was boiling furiously. Well, no doubt it was. We refilled it and then we turned it back and drove down along the Central Street hill and along Maple, crossed into State Street, dropped down to Dwight, went west along Dwight to the vicinity where we had a shed that we could put the car in for the night. During that trip we had run, I think, just about six miles, maybe a little bit more. That was the first trip with this vehicle. It was the first trip of anything more than a few hundred yards that the car had ever made.
Shortly after the Harpers Ferry bridge reconstruction, Bollman was made foreman of bridges. It is apparent that, on the basis of his practical ability, enhanced by the theoretical knowledge gained by intense self-study, he eventually came to assist Chief Engineer Benjamin H. Latrobe in bridge design. He later took this work over entirely as Latrobe’s attentions and talents were demanded in the location and extension of the line between Cumberland and Wheeling.
Patent Iron Suspension Railroad Bridge.
The undersigned would inform the officers of Railroads and others, that he is prepared to furnish Drawings and Estimates for Bridges, Roofs, etc., on the plan of Bollman’s Patent.
The performance of these bridges, some of which have been in use for six years, has given entire satisfaction. Their simplicity of construction renders repairs easy and cheap, and by a peculiar connection of the Main and Panel Rods at the bottom of the Posts, all danger from the effects of expansion, which has heretofore been the chief objection to Iron Bridges, is entirely removed.
J. H. TEGMEYER,
(1) Safety valve,
(2) spring balance,
(3) steam jet
(4) dry pipe
(5) throttle lever
(7) crown bar
(8) front tube sheet
(9) check valve
(10) top rail
(11) rear-boiler bracket
(13) rocker bearing
(16) bottom rail
(17) pump heater valve
(18) cylinder lubricator
(19) reversing lever
(20) brake shoe
(21) mud ring
(22) blowoff cock
(Drawing by J. H. White.)
“Pioneer” locomotive. (Drawing by J. H. White.)
The “Fury,” built for the Boston and Worcester Railroad in 1849 by Wilmarth. It was known as a “Shanghai” because of its great height.
Diagram comparing the Pioneer (shaded drawing) with the Columbia, a standard 8-wheel engine of 1851. (Drawing by J. H. White.)
Hudson River Railroad
Lowell Machine Shop, 1852
Wt. 271/2 tons (engine only)
Cyl. 161/2 x 22 inches
Wheel diam. 84 inches
Cumberland Valley Railroad
Seth Wilmarth, 1851
81/2 x 14 inches
Rear elevation of Pioneer and detail of valve shifter; valve face and valve. (Drawing by J. H. White.)
“Pioneer” locomotive. (1) Air chamber, (2) reversing lever, (3) counterweight, (4) reversing shaft, (5) link hanger, (6) rocker, (7) feedwater line to boiler, (8) link block, (9) link, (10) eccentric, (11) pump plunger, (12) pump steamheater line, (13) feedwater pump, (14) wire netting [bonnet], (15) deflecting cone, (16) stack, (17) stack hopper. (Drawing by J. H. White.)