The Fort Dodge Messenger: July 16, 1904
Give Scientific Demonstrations
Professor Patty Will Make Interesting Experiments at the Chautauqua.
Wonderful Radium Properties
Is an Inexhautible (sic) Source of Heat and Energy – One Stick of It Can Propel a Steamship Across the Ocean – The Experiments.
On July 26 at the Fort Dodge Chautauqua Professor Patty will demonstrate in a lecture some of the properties of the latest scientific discoveries, namely, radium liquid air and wireless telegraphy. Professor Patty is the possessor of a small piece of radium about the size of a pea. The value of radium at present is about $1,000,000 per pound, and yet is it contained in small quantities in almost every other substance like air, water and earth.
The process of reducing it from these substances is yet in the primary experimental state. The most remarkable qualities of radium are its inexhaustible energy of heat and light. The scientists have held a theory called the conservation of energy, namely, that the give and take energy from one body to another is generally believed to balance up. and now radium is discovered to give a continuous expenditure of energy without receiving any equivalent. The source of its power seems to be entirely unlimited. In radium we have a dynamo which throws off high-power electricity whitout any engine or machinery to enforce it. Our steamships could cross the ocean by using the energy of a stick of radium and we understand that that the Light and Power company are negotiating with Professor Patty for the loan of his piece of radium to furnish power to run the street cars with during the Chautauqua if the long delayed shaft don’t come before that time.
These wonderful properties of radium give a new meaning to the relation between spirit and matter so that this new discovery is likely to have an influence on the logical thought. Radium also has some healing qualities and will effect the study of medicin.
All of its wonderful properties are to be demonstrated by Professor Patty in a way to please and instruct the large audience that will no doubt gather on the occasion. He will also show the remarkable properties of liquid air which melts steel pens and freezes strawberries to 312 degrees below zero. A small amount of it will heat a house in winter and cool it in summer.
But the most practical of all recent scientific discoveries is wireless telegraphy. Professor Patty will also demonstrate this. He has a compete set of wireless telegraph instruments and will send and receive messages thru space in t he presence of the audience.
Wireless telegraphy has already become a necessity to this world for it is the only way whereby ships can at a distance communicate with one another and with the shore. Navies of all nations are being rapidly equipped and its possibilities in warfare are being tested in the present conflict between Japan and Russia.
We shall expect soon to have telephoning made possible by the wireless system. The exhibition of these scientific experiments with radium, liquid air and wireless telegraphy will provide a rare opportunity to the people of the community of gaining first hand and accurate ideas of scientific phenomena of world wide renown and the greatest importance.
(Editor’s note: For more about radium, visit this Wikipedia article. For one thing, the article states: “The amounts produced were aways relative small. For example in 1918 13.6 g of radium were produced in the United states.” That amount converts to less than half an ounce – .4797 ounce, to be precise. The $1 million dollar price for a pound of radium would be about$23,949,480 today. Also, it would be easier to search online for Professor Patty if the article had mentioned his first name I did find one specific mention of him in the Chautauqua magazine, mentioning that he would be at the Chautauqua in Fort Dodge in July 1904.)