By 1500 Leonardo Da Vinci was busy painting and designing things for the future including the helicopter. Artist of this time generally produced pleasing but useless art. This useless art is priceless today. This Renascence allowed humans the right to free expression that had been alive in Egypt, Greece, China and the Indians of America centuries earlier.
The Greek and Roman Church were totally separate and very anti-Semitic placing the blame for the crucifixion of Christ directly on the head of the Jews. England had formed its own Church and the Czars were in effective control of the Russian Church. The Ottoman Empire had peaked and was in decline. Rome was the undisputed center of the Roman Catholic Church at the Vatican with Michelangelo painting the ceiling. The French and British hated each other. Israel had mosques and was in the hands of the Moslems. Most of the Moslems had been driven out of Europe.
The first of this era to show some scientific light was Nicolaus Copernicus. He came from a middle class background in Poland where he studied at the university of Krakow and later in Italy where he received a degree in Canon Law. He studied the mathematical sciences, which at the time were required for medicine. During a short visit to Rome in about 1513 he wrote a short account of what has since become known as the Copernican theory. The Sun is at rest in the center of the Universe. A full account of the theory was not published until the very end of his life. History records that the printed book, On the revolutions of the heavenly spheres, was delivered to him on his deathbed in 1543. This theory involved giving several distinct motions to the Earth. It was consequently considered implausible most astronomers and natural philosophers of succeeding generations before the middle of the seventeenth century. The German, Johannes Kepler, later supported Copernicus by writing three laws of planetary motion that has his name. He also calculated the astronomical tables to establish the truth of heliocentric astronomy. The church prosecuted his mother as a witch.
In 1565 the Pencil using natural graphite was invented. There is no lead in the lead pencil. Graphite is a form of carbon in nature that was produced by heating coal like deposits to high temperature. The diamond is the exact same carbon heated to high temperature at high pressure.
All living things are based on carbon. If you leave a hot iron on a cotton shirt too long the fibers under the iron will produce carbon fibers. If these fibers are mixed with starch or sugar and heated in a container that contains no oxygen this mixture will produce carbon-carbon. This simple product was at the root of the FMI conviction in Federal court. It was also what caused the threatened deportation to my homeland in the USA.
The construction of a useful compass was completed to discover the Northwest Passage that was finally found when nuclear submarines floated under the ice caps in the latter part of the twentieth century.
The magnetic compass was to unlock the puzzle that led to generated electricity.
William Gilbert, personal physician to Queen Elizabeth I, was the first to study electricity and write down the results. His book, De Magnete, published in 1600, deduced magnetic induction, polarity and the effects of heat on magnets. He defined the earth as a giant magnet while explaining how the compass worked. He introduced many modern terms into scientific terminology, including electric force, magnetic pole, and electric.
By 1600 William Shakespeare had established himself as to most capable writer in the history of England. Much later Webster sanitized his words while publishing the English dictionary.
In May 1610 Galileo Galilei recorded the discoveries he made with his telescope in a short book called Message from the Stars. It caused a sensation and opened the door for many new lines of scientific thought. It also angered the Catholic Church in Rome enough to put him on trial and make him withdraw his contention that the earth rotated around the sun.
This was the last of the official Catholic Inquisitions and Miguel de Cervantes Saaverdra published in 1615 the last part of his Don Quixote of La Mancha like a period at the end of a sentence forever putting an end to the Knight in shining armor.
James VI of Scotland was born during the period between the Geneva and the Bishop's Bible. The Church of England had long thought that current Bibles were written for the church in Rome and demanded a new one. King James assembled the Hampton Court Conference in January of 1604 who made the following resolution:
"That a translation be made of the whole Bible, as consonant as can be to the original Hebrew and Greek; and this to be set out and printed, without any marginal notes, and only to be used in all churches of England in time of divine service."
Forty-seven translators completed the work and it was printed in 1611, the complete title page reading:
"THE HOLY BIBLE, Conteyning the Old Testament, and the New: Newly Translated out of the Originall tongues: & with the former Translations diligently compared and revised, by his Majesties Special Commandment. Appointed to be read in Churches. Imprinted at London by Robert Barker, Printer to the Kings most Excellent Majestie. ANNO DOM. 1611."
This new Bible intensified the fervor of the protestant movement and the Church of England fought back. England needed people in the new colonies and gave an open invitation to America for those who sought to practice their new religion. It was not an offer of religious freedom but a promise that they could govern themselves with full protection of the Magna Carta.
Nearly one million people a year come from all over the world to visit the town in Massachusetts where in 1620 Europeans first made a home in new England at Plymouth Rock where the passengers on the Mayflower first set foot in the New World. This little bit of folklore and the stories we read in the history books are not exactly true.
The Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Le-n landed at St. Augustine Florida in 1513 in his quest for the Fountain of Youth. A settlement was established in 1565, 42 years before the first permanent English colony at Jamestown, Virginia. History also records that the first European settlement was in 1526 at Charles Town, South Carolina.
Algebra had been used as a form of mathematical calculation since 400 AD but the use of letters for unknowns became common during this period. John
Napier invented logarithms in 1614 ant the slide rule was introduced by Richard Delamain in 1630.
My youngest daughter finished her studies in college chemistry in the 1980's. She needed some help on a difficult problem and assumed I could help because she knew I was working in metallurgy. The problem was way over my head but I did notice that she did not comprehend logarithms and had never seen a slide rule. I had a slide rule in my brief case and was able to show her a log scale.
The word electricity first appeared in print in an article written by Thomas Brown in 1646. Otto von Guericke built a rotating sulfur globe excited by frictional contact with a cloth in 1660 to produce electricity much greater than previously available and led to a host of new experiments. Sir Isaac Newton built a similar device using a glass globe in 1675 to explore attraction, repulsion, sparking and other phenomena. His assistant noticed a luminous effect when a vessel containing mercury was shaken.
In 1672 Otto Von Guerich wrote a book on magnetism where he described electric machines. In 1675 Robert Boyle wrote a book on the production of electricity. The mechanical machine that produced static electricity was for studies and possible uses in medicine. The scientific minds had made the connection between matter and force but did not understand it.
The Renaissance was ending and a new artisan was replacing the artisans of the time. These artisans would create practical art rather than just fine art.
Sir Isaac Newton was selected as the second most important man of the second millennium by the television media who of course selected Gutenberg as the first. Gutenberg made a machine that conveyed Newton's ideas and formula to the masses.
"Before we take to sea we walk on land,
Before we create we must understand."
Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy Optics Principia
In the late 1600's Newton published his far-reaching understandings of the mathematics and rules of nature. His published works were the basis for the coming industrial revolution. His simple understanding that there was reaction to every action of nature has withstood the test of time.
Newton used the work of Copernicus since it allowed sensible consideration of gravitation. Kepler's laws of planetary motion and Galileo's understanding of the motion and falling bodies set the scene for his theory of gravity which was presented in the Principia in 1687. Newton's law of gravitation is expressed by force being equal to the weight of two masses multiplied together divided by the distance between them times the universal gravitational constant.
Newton understood electricity and magnetism he did not connect the two. In his "Mathematical Principles of natural philosophy", he wrote more than two hundred years ago:
"Absolute, true and mathematical time, in itself, and from its own nature, flows equally, without relation to any thing external; and by other name called Duration. Relative, apparent, and vulgar time, is some sensible and external measure of duration by motion, whether accurate or unequable, which is commonly used instead of true time; as an hour, a day, a month, a year. It may be, that there is no equable motion, whereby time may be accurately measured. All motions may be accelerated and retarded, but the flowing of absolute time is liable to no change."
Those who throw up their hands when technical subjects are discussed understand most of the important works of Newton. The fact than an apple strikes the earth harder from the upper limbs and that a car traveling at 100 miles per hour is damaged more in a wreck than a car traveling at 10 miles per hour are easily understood. The fact that a body at rest wants to stay at rest and a body in motion wants to remain in motion is also a life experience.
Peter the Great in Russia was very impressed with Newton. His forward thinking assisted Peter in moving Russia out of the Dark Ages. With his many holdings Peter became the richest man of all time but the monarchs in the west looked down their noses at him. Peter brought in many educated and trained people of the Jewish faith. Later Czar's would reverse his decision and try to kick them out.
The growth of printing from Gutenberg's invention in the 1700's caused a revolution with no fighting. A new Reformation occurred in Europe as a direct result of publishing and printing. Newton's books were well received by academicians but the accuracy of his calculations on the mass of the planets was questioned right away. It would be after his death that enough corrections were made so the work could be universally excepted as the general law of relativity.
The important men that led mankind into the industrial revolution were not all scientists. Mankind was building all sorts of devices to support the armies and make labor more productive. Thomas Savery built and patented the first steam driven water pump in 1698. Thomas Newcomen improved the engine in 1705 and was issued a patent. The first use of this steam driven engines was pump water from tin mines.
Edmund Halley made the first magnetic map of declination soon after 1700. The magnetic north pole is not the geographic pole and different parts of the earth have different deflections to true magnetic north.
You must know these deflections if you depend on a magnetic compass to tell you where you are headed. Global positioning will soon make the compass absolete.
In 1729 Stephen Gray made the distinction between insulators and conductors. He found that silk filaments did not permit the electricity to leak away but copper wires did. He may have been the first to use wires as conductors. Charles Du Fay continued Gray's work. He showed that all conducting bodies could be electrified. His contribution was the classification of electricity into two kinds, vitreous and resinous. He observed that these forces repelled similar charges and attracted opposite ones.
Pieter van Musschenbrock of Leyden, Holland in 1745 is listed as the inventor of the Leyden jar. A partly filled water jar with a nail projecting from its cork could was used to store an electric charge.
Benjamin Franklin and his two close friends, Peter Collinson and Philip Syng, took great interests in the science of electricity and began their studies. In 1749 Franklin's group was credited with making an electrical capacitor they called a battery. His publications about electricity and other items of science led the thinkers of the world to understand that nature obeys rules. The popular press steered man away from superstition and opened a study of the true character of natural forces. He was the first to put into print for the masses the idea that electricity was like water flowing through pipes. The driving force for experimentation was the possible use of electricity as a medical cure.
It was Franklin's experiments with lightning that made him famous. You are familiar with the story of how he attached a key to a kite and went out into a storm in order to prove that lightning and electricity were of the same natural force. His invention of the lightning rod was his claim to fame. The power of the popular press allowed Franklin to sell his lightning rod to wealthy people all over the world a led to study and many written documents about static electricity.
King George and the King of France were in constant battle with a small truce occurring in 1748. France held most of America including Canada and the stretch of land following the Mississippi River all the way to Louisiana.
The English sent two regiments to the colonies in 1755 "to protect the colonies from the Indian invasions". The King of France sent several regiments of his own to New France "to defend their frontiers". What followed in upstate New York was the first official war in the New Land. This was named the French and Indian war in history books. A small part of what was going on with native Americans was captured in James Fenimore Cooper's book, The Last of the Mohicans.
The Authorized King James Version of the Holy Bible was revised several times until finalized with the1762 Cambridge revision by Thomas Paris. This version became the word of God for the expanding evangelistic movement of the time.
The king of serendipity, Joseph Priestley, was brought up as a strict Calvinist but had strong doubts about the literal meanings of the words in the Bible. He established a church to teach the faith of Christianity while challenging items like the virgin birth of Christ. The teachings of Newton were becoming widespread and while not capable of understanding the mathematics he began to experiment with nature. He met Benjamin Franklin while on a trip to London in 1766. This meeting sparked an interest and he began to dabble with electricity.
In his book The History and Present State of Electricity he wrote that electricity must behave like gravity and he could predict that electricity might also follow the inverse square behavior like gravity as described by Newton.
This finding was based on his observations during tests of light objects being attracted to a charged sphere. When he put an object attached to a silk thread inside a glass sphere it was not attracted to the sphere even though the same objects on the outside of the sphere the same distance away was attracted. He was compelled to make the observation that Newton's writings concerning gravity concluded that an object located at the center of the earth would not be effected by the gravity of the earth hence; electricity must be like gravity.
In 1767 he discovered that pencil graphite conducted electricity and recorded this fact in his writings.
Priestley lived next to a brewery and was intrigued by the "air" that floated over the fermenting grain. He was able to show that this brewery gas extinguished lighted wood chips. He noticed that this gas drifted to the ground because was heavier than normal air. This gas would later be identified as carbon dioxide.
When this heavy gas was dissolved in water it had a very pleasant and tangy taste. For this invention of soda water, he was elected to the French Academy of Sciences in and received a medal from the Royal Society.
He placed a shoot of a green plant into a container of water. He then covered the container and lit a candle in it until it completely burned out. After a short period he was able to light the candle and became the first person to record the respiration of plants.
He recorded the production of laughing gas. Eventually, nitrous oxide would become the first surgical anesthetic.
He observed a gas produced by heating mercuric oxide that caused a candle to burn brightly. In his next experiment he observed that the green plant material that had grown on the walls of his jars when exposed to sunlight produced the same gas. He documented the process of photosynthesis.
Priestley told French chemist Antoine Lavosier of his discovery. Lavosier repeated the experiments and named the gas oxygen. From these experiments he summarized his findings into the famous law of conservation of matter. Matter is neither created nor destroyed but is simply changed from one form to another.
With a little more forward thinking these two could have predicted the special theory of relativity. What they really observed was the Creators remarkable way of using the electromagnetic spectrum to recycle his carbon.
Priestley observed and described the properties of ammonia, sulfur dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, and carbon monoxide for the first time. He noted that ammonia could be decomposed by electricity.
Priestley discovered that India gum could be used to rub out lead pencil marks. He recorded the discovery of the eraser. Perhaps this is where the name rubber was recorded.
If only partly true it is no wonder he was given the name: The King of Serendipity.
James Watt was an instrument maker for the University of Glasgow. He became acquainted with the Newcomen engine when he was repairing the University's model. In 1769 he obtained a patent for a "new method for lessening the consumption of steam and fuel in fire engines". Birmingham manufacturer, Matthew Boulton, supported Watt and began manufacturing these new engines.
The development in economic organization that began in the eighteenth century is one of the most important occurrences in human history. Harnessing of steam-power to the service of mankind started the period known as the Industrial Revolution. Boulton & Watt were important as a pioneer and for twenty-five years was the sole source of steam power in Great Britain.
The massive energy that could be stored in steam allowed this power to be converted to motion in the steam engine. Watt was the first to record observations of the behavior of water based on Newtonian physics.
Nature gave water some remarkable features during the creation. Many top engineers of the day will not at first believe the following fact:
It takes more energy to boil a pound of water than to melt a pound of steel. Water at 39 degrees F becomes heaviest. Ice floats to provide an insulator for the water below and without this life, as we know it, would not survive on the planet.
The massive energy in the largest atomic bomb ever exploded would not boil all the water in a small lake.
Watt could not have made this engine without metal produced in furnaces that were fueled with wood and charcoal. The power of man, animal, and water turned the mechanisms before the steam engine was invented. The major improvement that Watt accomplished came from a better metal cutting lathe built during his time that could accurately bore the inside of a cylinder. He was afraid to use high-pressure steam due to failure of cylinders produced in his time. It would be a long time before steel producers used improved low-pressure steam engines to produce steel that could sustain the higher pressures.
Future writers would conclude the Watt's engine was the beginning of modern society since it took man out of the serfdom of manual labor.
Watt became the name of electrical energy in the 1800's. One Volt times one Ampere equals on Watt. Most people know them as kilowatts.
The French and American revolutions took place in the late 1700's. America's Declaration of Independence in1776 was a revolt against English tax collectors. It was not a revolt of the masses to take control. A new country where all men, under God, we created equal was the battle cry but slaves and the impoverished poor were not really counted as men. Native American Indians had no standing and were considered savages.
The discovery of the existence of the blueprint DNA in the twentieth century and the crude mapping of the human genome in the year 2000 made a lie of the sound bite, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." The truth is that all humans are created individually. The exception to the rule is identical twins and possible cloned humans but these become individuals with effects of environment and life experiences.
Franklin was an important part of the provisional government set up in Philadelphia where a Virginia farmer was selected to fight the British. It was not long before General George Washington lost the battles to control the ports from Boston to New York. American history books are full of the events of Valley Forge and the crossing of the Delaware and the battle of Trenton.
Dr. Edwin Finch Northrup purchased a property in the early 1900's on one of the roads Washington used to reach Trenton very near the place where the Delaware was crossed. It was on this land where he raised pointer dogs as a hobby. This is where Ajax Electrothermic was founded in 1920.
Henry M Rowan purchased a property on the Rancocas Creek that he named Rockbridge in 1961 where he currently lives near the headquarters of his companies. Upstream on the Rancocas was the place where a small factory was established to produce iron cannon balls for Washington's army. The iron ore had been leached from the soil by acids from cypress trees that grew in abundance. Carbon and fuel was from the scrub pines that grew like weeds. In the darkness of night these businessmen transported their wares down the Rancocas and across the Delaware to sell to Washington.
During an August night in 1789 the French masses stormed the Bastille and used violence against the rich and powerful church that was controlled by the aristocracy and privileged few. The cry was the declaration of the rights of man, libertŽ, ŽgalitŽ, and fratenitŽ. Freedom of all human beings, equal rights before the law and the brotherhood of man had roots in the Jewish faith. Jews throughout Europe were living in communes while keeping a high level of literacy as they taught their faith and system of laws.
The monarch of France generally supported the American Revolution while they had their eye on establishing a colony in North America. The battle that Britain was having with its French and Spanish neighbors were the reason we were able to kick out the British.
The Magna Carta and new French Constitution had an effect on the debates on the adoption of the American Constitution where opponents repeatedly charged that the Constitution as drafted would open the way to tyranny by the central government. On September 25, 1789, the First Congress of the United States agreed to 10 amendments known as the Bill of Rights. Amendment X stated: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people. This was to lead to the Civil War and continuing political contests to the present day.
On November 21,1783 the Montgolfier brothers recorded the first manned flight in a hot air balloon near Paris. Built from paper and silk it was flown for 22 minutes. The farmers were very suspicious of this fiery dragon descending from the sky. The pilots offered champagne to calm them and to celebrate the first human flight. This tradition carried on to this day.
The new government in France controlled by the citizens lasted until Napoleon Bonaparte became the effective dictator after his success in battle and putting a revolt in Paris in 1796.
Napoleon was very clever on the battlefield winning every battle and war for France. His battle with Austria changed the borders and set the stage for future wars."He who fears being conquered is sure of defeat."
In 1785 Charles Augustin de Coulomb, a French physicist, published the mathematical theory of electric and magnetic action. He was a military engineer on station in the French West Indies when the French revolution that decided not to return home because he would be punished as a loyal servant of the King. His findings that forces between two charges behaved in accordance with Newton's square laws were accepted while Priestley's writings were rejected. His publications were to become the basis of Poisson's mathematical theory of magnetism.
Ships from Scotland purchased tobacco and French ships purchased cotton from Charleston. Southern planters were in desperate need of a way to make the growing of cotton profitable. Long-staple cotton was easy to separate from its seeds, but could be grown only along the coast. Even with slave labor the profits from this product were being squeezed by exports from India where the British controlled the trade routes. The variety of cotton that grew inland had sticky green seeds that were time-consuming and unprofitable to produce.
When Eli Whitney left New England and headed South in 1792, he had no idea that he would change the course of American history. Whitney wanted to become a lawyer but had debts to pay and needed a job. He left his native Massachusetts to assume the position of private tutor on a plantation in Georgia. Within months he created the cotton gin. A small gin could be hand-cranked but larger versions would be harnessed to a horse or driven by waterpower.
"One man and a horse will do more than fifty men with the old machines," wrote Whitney to his father. "Tis generally said by those who know anything about it, that I shall make a fortune by it."
But patenting an invention and making a profit from it are two different things. Loopholes in existing patent law prevented him from wining court cases against those who copied his idea.
In 1798 Whitney figured out how to manufacture muskets by machine so that the parts were interchangeable. It was as a manufacturer of muskets that Whitney finally became rich. If his genius led King Cotton to triumph in the South, it also created the technology with which the North won the Civil War.
Larger gins began to do the work of a thousand slaves and early business leaders foresaw a reduction in slave trade. Supply side economics took over as the price was reduced the demand grew and even more slaves would be needed to plant, grow, and pick the cotton on the new southern plantations.
On March 30, 1792 the New York legislature passed "an act for establishing and opening lock navigation within the state." The Western Inland Lock Navigation Company was formed to open a navigable waterway from Albany to Lakes Seneca and Ontario. The Northern Inland Lock Navigation Company was formed to improve navigation between the Hudson and Lake Champlain.
Italian anatomist Luigi Galvani received the credit for introducing the modern study of electricity. When scalpels touched the muscle it caused the legs of the frog to move. Galvani was convinced that the muscles or nerves were the source of the electricity. Volta felt it was in the metals and became interested in this amazing phenomenon. The investigations that followed became the source of one of the greatest scientific rivalries of all time. In the end there was truth on both sides but Volta's ideas would prevail. Galvani died in 1798 and never knew the outcome of the debate.
Northrup's fiction borrowed part of this history as he tells us how he experienced electricity of this type.
"We got back safe and we had a lot of frogs legs. I think there were enough to fill my straw hat. We were awful hungry and John put the legs in a big tin pan to wash them. He put water in the pan and dad put some salt in the water. We saw a wonderful thing happen. All the big frogs legs started kicking just like they were alive. They kicked hard all the time we looked. I did not know that things which had been cut off and the skin gone could be alive.
"I asked dad to tell me. I knew he would tell me because dad is very cientific. Dad said it was electrisity. I asked dad what is electrisity. Dad said it is what makes our radio go and many other things. I did not say any thing more but I will tell you mother that when I am a big man I will find out what electrisity is because it does so many things. When the frogs legs were cooked in the frying pan they did not kick any more and they were awful good to eat just as dad said they are.
"The Great Awakening" swept all through the East Coast in the late 1700's. There were books published on population control and many other individual freedoms. Soft rubber had been developed and some businessmen were offering diaphragms that could be purchased through the mail. The Catholic's and the Puritans in Boston urged the Postmaster General to act on rights given it the constitution to control interstate commerce. This was the first overt act of censorship and attack on the right of a woman to control the size of her family. This battle is not over.
Another century was passing and quite a few waited the end of time. Many people thought that most things in science had already been invented.
The white man controlled the mountains of Western North Carolina and my forefathers were among the first to arrive.