Friday, July 20, 2018

Postblogging Technology, May 1948, II: Black Out And Honey Trap

R_. C_.,
The Astoria,
New York

Dear Father:

I hope this letter finds you well, and I hope there's enough money in newsprint to justify those swanky digs!

You asked about the Arcata flying.  I know it's hard to believe, but the FIDO installation and the lights rigs on the runway is about the extent of the  highly advanced not-flying-into-mountains rig-up that the Navy's got going here. There is a war-surplus ILS and also a GCA and a pretty good HF beacon not linked to either, but we're not really testing those so much as giving me access to them in case I can't find the ground for it being on fire. 

So I've been doing a great deal of weird flying instead, since the station also has quite the boneyard, and I can see the difference between landing in the dark in a Jacobs Anson or the amphibian Catalina. (Absolutely the best, since it's already going like it's landed at 1500ft. Though, on the other hand, it floats like it's on water at 50.) I've been lobbying the brass to let me take a trip to Blighty, just to check out the automatic landing talk.

In the mean time, I can't really complain, because this summer's a cushy gig and no-one's stopping me from swinging down by the Bay. I've even pulled the old Indian out of storage (sheepish look at Grace as I go --I hope this thing blows over eventually, 'cuz I miss my Auntie!) so I can tootle around town in style. Ronnie's taken to bringing trousers to the office so that she can change before she swings onboard. Miss K. seems ever so jealous, and there's a joke there given --Well, given. Not that I'm going to say anything about it, considering. I am not going to be the man that breaks her up with her boyfriend.

Her boyfriend, on the other hand . . . 

Not entirely irrelevant, went down around the Bay to see V., whom we last left with a vague promise to do something for. Did you know that he's writing for television, now? Also entertained us with a reading of a bizarre story about magicians with strange names in the last days of the world, a la the end of Time Traveller. Can't see it selling, myself, but Miss K. loved it, if not V. 

Ronnie's been taking up so much of my time that I haven't even had a chance to volunteer for the campaign, which I'm sure you'll be glad to hear. Don't you worry, though, because once Wallace is President, I'm for an Admiral's flag for sure.

Kidding! Obviously the campaign can't expect to win in '48. We have to play the long game, looking forward to '52, when America will be tired enough of Dewey or Taft, or, who knows, Vandenberg, and ready to return to the New Deal.

I think I'll leave it at that, because somehow another weekend's gone, and it's off to fly the fogs of northern California for another week.

Your Son,

People pay these guys.

Time, 17 May 1948


Edward T. Parmelee of Forest Hills is a young Republican who likes Stassen, which is nothing compared to the six Time readers who like Toscanini, making him the dark horse shoe-in for '48. Theodore Maynard writes to correct misapprehensions about Thomas More; D. W. Brogan about Thorez; and O. J. Elder about Bernarr MacfaddenPeter B. Waite, of the University of British Columbia writes to point out that Canadians really, actually, really, really, actually, really don't want a customs union with America. Really. Lurlyne B. Martin, of Washington, thinks that psychologists and psychiatrists are even crazier than the people they work with. John Osborne has opinions about America and Europe that seem . . nice? Me engineer. Me no read words good. William Jansen, superintendent of schools, is upset that Time slandered Harlem Junior High School 120. The editor's letter is enormously please with the debut of Edwin Gerschefski's Half Moon Mountaina ballad inspired by a story in Time. 

 I couldn't find Gerschefski's Half Moon Mountain on Youtube, but here's a performance of his arrangement of the Lord's Prayer.

National Affairs

Most of the first two pages are taken up with non-strikes, especially the railway strike that didn't happen. Time is either upset that there was "nearly" a strike; or, more likely that there wasn't a strike to hold against labour. At least it is news, not like the follow-ups about the President's birthday and Roger Lapham's decision to go on a world tour for peace now that he's not mayor, any more. There is also very long  not-news about how the average American is upset that the veto is ruining the United Nations, and confirmation of the Senate's support of the 70 group air force with a $3.2 billion appropriation by a vote of 74-2, with only Harry Cain and Glenn Taylor voting against.

 I guess I have mixed opinions about that, as the more planes the better, but, on the other hand, they're air force planes. (The Senate is also not best pleased by our new giant carrier.) Before passing over to the fourth page of national coverage, some actual news: the Senate has struck down the oleomargarine tax, and may eventually do something about housing, tariffs and Taft-Hartley. And in what may or may not be news, Tom Dewey seems to be making headway in Oregon ahead of the primary. As Time points out, boring as it is, Dewey is still the one to beat at the convention, while in the Democratic primaries, anyone endorsed by Truman is getting beat. Glenn Taylor was attacked by Birmingham police for trying to enter a meeting hall through the "Negro entrance," while the Supreme Court has found colour bar real-estate covenants to be legal but unenforceable under the Fourteenth Amendment.

"Children, Dogs and Wall Street" The President says we have a housing crisis. At least 2.5 million families are doubled up, twice the number of October 1945. Atlanta had 1917 housing starts in 1948, 10,000 applicants. St. Louis, which issued the lowest number of permits last year at 802, has 14,000 applicants. The Taft-Ellender-Warrender Bill, intended to clear slums, guarantee $1.6 billion in mortgage loans, and build 15 million units, 500,000 of them federal public housing, has passed the Senate but is held up in Congress. Also, Jim Folsom is embarrassing Alabama, if that's still possible.

Americana reports that Parris Mitchell of Kings Row will probably be a bestseller, since it has just as much horror, sex, madness and depravity as Kings Row, handled just as discretely. Various people and the ABA are on about the divorce law. The US Naval Academy has decided not to have a stage revival of Boy Meets Girl, after all, as the commandant's wife is displeased. Mississippi Governor Fielding L. Wright invited any Mississippi Negro who was "so deluded" as to think they would ever be able to cross the colour bar to cross the state line, instead.

(Fielding L. Wright "was known as a friend of education.")


"The Grand Design" Churchill gave a nice speech to kick off the Congress of Europe at the Hague, and the fact that Valley Forge was visiting Bergen, Norway shows that America is on Europe's side.

"After Long Illness" The UN's Atomic Energy Commission has announced the suspension of the negotiations that they have been having about what they've been talking about, since no-one can agree on what they're talking about. Russia thinks that they're talking about America not having atom bombs, while America thinks that they are talking about Russia not having them, while Britain thinks that they are talking about [awkward pause] so what about the weather in Abingdon, today?"

Just an utterly sordid story. After his death squad days,
Farran went on to a brilliant career in Alberta politics.
"Waiting" Palestine's Jews are waiting for the Brits to withdraw to set up a provisional state in Tel Aviv. The British are waiting for their official departure date, so as to make a dignified exit. Palestinian Arabs are either waiting for King Abdullah to invade, or not waiting, and getting out now, as two hundred thousand of them have already fled. Even if he does, however, and even with an Iraqi brigade to add to his Arab Legion, he will only be occupying already Arab-held territories. Hopefully, a ceasefire around Jerusalem will keep it out of the fray. In Wolverhampton, a Zionist parcel bomb, aimed at accused British war criminal Roy Farran, killed his brother, Rex, instead.

"On a Sandy Plain" A long and colourful story establishes that life is still hard in Berlin, that the Russian communists are making it worse, and that life in the "American colony" is quite nice, with two rounds of steak at community dinners, and "all American girls" invited to the "Stateside Stomp" on base, with boys, I notice, perhaps distracted by the "15-year old prostitutes" on the street.

"Drole de Crise" The latest update from Belgium has Spaak resigning because the Socialists are terrible. Of course the Catholic church should run Belgian schools. It's a Catholic country!

"South of the Border" A long story about Korea establishes that there is going to be an election in the American-controlled south, and that communists are awful. In China, Koumintang troops under Hu Tsung-nan (who is "roly-poly") won a battle, while others were not so lucky.

In Latin America, or, actually, Washington, the State Department's new Director for Latin American Republic Affairs, Paul Daniels, has decided that it was quaint and old-fashioned to not recognise "dicactorial or unpopular governments," and has changed course, recognising President Somoza of Nicaragua. Peru's new president, Bustamante, is great because he has the leftists on the run.


"Running Fine, But . . ."The auto industry has never done better in peacetime, with profits up entirely due to a 35% increase in gross. This is a problem for companies that have to cut production, as shown by Chrysler, which suffered a major strike. So the slowdown in steel deliveries is very bad news. Or not, as we'll see.

"Independents' Day" The Supreme Court has found for independent cinemas in a sweeping antitrust decision against the big studios, finding all practices named in the complaint, anticompetitive, and sending enforcement down to the lower courts, which had failed to uphold an original order for the studios to sell off their chains, instructing them to get tougher. In other words, divorcement isn't yet the law, but may well soon be. Hopefully, without block booking, there will be fewer bad movies, too.

"Alien Property" American Hylasol, makers of the cleaners Dreft, Drene, Shasta and Teel, was indicted in New York this week for being a front for the German soapmakers Henkel and Cie, and of dodging taxes. Dr. Lewis Hart Marks, president, and vice-president of Publicker Industries, the largest American maker of industrial alcohol, has some explaining to do about the manner in which Hylasol ended up with rights to the royalties for Henkel's synthetic detergent patents. In unrelated news, the new head of the CAB, Joseph O'Connell, has refused to reopen Braniff's contract for air mail to Latin America. Pan American and Panagra have complained that the required subsidy has risen 22-fold since the contract was signed, and that they should get another chance to bid. O'Connell says no, and Pan Am has responded by denying Braniff access to its Latin American airports, facilities and communications.

State of Business reports that Emporium's publicity stunt of mixing Black Magic perfume with the ink for its circular has led to Black Magic selling out in less than a day. US exports reached a record total of $666 million in March, with the most spectacular gains in raw wool and newsprint. (It's odd that we're out of one business just to get into another!) The first deliveries of the new Anglia and Prefect have arrived in New York. Smaller and more expensive than American-made Fords, their four-cylinder, 30p engines getting 28 miles to the gallon are the likely selling points. ABC is going to make a public stock issue, Lever Brothers has bought William R. Warner, the home permanent waves maker, and Britain has stepped in to buy 90 million lbs of surplus North Carolina tobacco at a good price. It hopes to pay for the rest of its tobacco with ERA money. Couldn't they just stand outside the grocery store begging for loose cigarettes? It'd be more dignified.

(German for some reason, but the weather is right for a British car.)

Science, Medicine, Education

"Creeping War" Time thinks that some recent coverage of the atomic world is just intended to make our flesh creep, for example Popular Science's editor asking us to imagine two blocs, each capable of destroying the world, divided and at odds due to opposing "political theologies." Perry Githens supposes that this would naturally lead to a campaign of "sabotage by stealth," in which the Communists unleash biological warfare in the form of new plagues and new strains of old ones. Imagine a new future in which hospitals are full of bloated and helpless trichinosis patients, in which one outbreak of dysentery after another sweeps a city, disrupting communications and bringing down aeroplanes. (We pilots don't do well with the runs, although since Githers has wandered off the subject of war plagues to . . . something else, it might well be that the pilots are all devoted communists, deliberately ramming mountains.. I don't know about that ---seems more like a flight engineer thing to do.) Fires of unknown origin run the fire department ragged, while crime naturally rises, street lights keep blowing out, and police signals and radio systems suffer from jamming. "Absenteeism is terrific on night shifts, because people have taken to staying home after dark. People have taken to staying home in daylight, too." Rumours! Fear! Restlessness! A country brought to its knees, no atomic bomb needed!

You know, when I started reading this article, I was wondering how Time could possibly justify it as a lead article in the Science section. By the end of it, I actually learned something. Mainly that the guys at Popular Science are nuts, but that's still something to learn about science.

"The Broomstick" Time loves the Road Transport Gas Turbine just as much as anyone else, because who doesn't want a 160hp engine that only weighes 250lbs. "No-one thinks that the gas turbine will reach the market for several years."

"Signs of Maturity" Dr. Vannevar Bush reminds everyone that American science used to be parasitic on "visionary Europe," relying on basic discoveries made there, and confining itself to commercialising them. Dr. Bush believes that this must change, and is, and is particularly pleased with the GI Bill, which supports the expansion of universities, and military support for basic research.

"For a Sick World" General Eisenhower is raising money for the American delegation to the International Congress on Mental Health, to be held in London in August. He told the audience that mental health is very important, that mental illness is an enormous drag on society, and that victims are people "just like you."

"Jugs of Magic" The doctors who ran the Kaadt Diabetic Clinic of South Whitley, Indiana, were convicted of mail fraud this week for promoting "magic" cures for diabetes.

"Doctors versus Socialism" The AMA has capitulated to contributory health insurance plans in advance of their national convention, as long as they are run by doctors. The AFL and CIO want to go further, and have a national scheme, financed by government in order to  treat the poor.

If you're wondering why no "Education" stories this week, it's because a page and a half are spent on Dwight Eisenhower's first day as President of Columbia, alumni day at Milton College, and a lovable curmudgeon of an English professor at Baylor named Joseph Armstrong who has somehow swung the money for a building devoted to some of Robert Browning's letters[!] (Stories about Baylor professors appear in both Time and Newsweek this month.)

Koerner Library at UBC is built on top of the old Sedgewick Library, named after a lovable old English professor who, I was told in my days as an undergraduate, amusingly and eccentrically refused to teach women.

Press, Radio, People

"What is Truth?" Correspondents in Jerusalem can't get answers from the British, Haganah, or Jewish press agents, and are holed up in the Jerusalem YMCA when they're not out buying drinks for Arab and Jewish journalists, who do all the real work. In completely unrelated news, AP has made Kent Cooper its executive director, which is kind of like a king, Time says at least three times. It hasn't had one since 1939, because of WWII, but thinks it would be neato to have one again.

"New Cash, New Faces" Scientific American has a new editorial board and new backers, and is going to try to be a magazine about science, instead of "publicity handouts, dressed up." United Nations World and Script have also been given makeovers, but I don't care, because I don't read them. Time hearts Pravda. "You complete me."

Patriarchy is cute!

"The Pro" Sadie Hertz, 63, of Brooklyn, is the best known of New York's thirty or so "quiz pros," who regularly appear on the various radio quiz shows. She's a popular participant, because she is cute and quick with a quip, and was very upset by a 1946 news story that said that she was getting rich from the quiz shows.

"Well-turned Acquatress Esther Williams" doesn't like today's midget-sized swimsuits. William Waldorf Astor says that his mother likes to insult people to get a reaction, and if people don't react, she stops. The president of the WCTU, Mrs. D. Leigh Colvin, thinks that drink leads to atheism, and atheism leads to Communism. Hitler's dentist identified his body from his jawbone this week. Miss Gilda Gray caused a stir when she was invited to a high school dance by the principal. Genevieve Taggard has received a $1000 grant from the Institute of Arts and Letters. Herbert Hoover got an award from the Boys and Girls Club, and the Romanian, Dutch and British monarchies all provided gossip moments.

Kenny Delmar and Alice Howard have had their second child. Diana Wanger has married for the third time(!) James Folsom has married for the one-too-many times, and Hans Kindler for the second. U Saw, Erskine Gwynne and Arthur Ault, Viola Allen and Kate La Montagne Butler have died.

The New Pictures

Box office receipts are down, and The Screen Writer had a hilarious joke about how the industry was looking for a script that didn't feature any identifiable villains or treat any controversial subjects, including double beds and death by air accident, because people get offended too easily these days. There's also a lead feature about Olivier's Ophelia, with Jean Simmons, which is "better than the play." Actual new pictures this week include The Iron Curtainbased on the Canadian atomic spy ring, featuring Dana Andrews as Igor Gouzenko. Naive and yet plausible, it is an above-average spine-chiller and "top-notch anti-Communist propaganda." The Sainted Sisters is the story of a "con girls' vacation" in small town Maine, circa 1895. An "oldtime gosh-all-Friday comedy-drama" that shows that Veronica Lake has good timing. Letter from an Unknown Woman is a Stefan Zweig romance of the kind that "Hollywood has lost its knack for," but Joan Fontaine can't carry the role.

(Political correctness was hilarious in 1948.)


Siegfried Giedion's Mechanization Takes Command is illustrated by the clockwork scene from Modern Times, so you know it must be a Very Serious book about how automation is about to replace humanity at whatever, wherever, so that "future generations will perhaps designate this period as one of mechanized barbarism, the most repulsive barbarism of all."

(Architect>Modern art as slaughterhouse. Turns out that it's not just a random joke.)

Pearl Buck's Peony gets every hatchet in the Time toolshed, up to and including great-great-grand-dad's old tomahawk. Perhaps a bit too pro-Communist? David L. Cohn's Where I Was Born and Raised is a "serious study of the cotton economy" and full of the "leisurely humour of an old-school Mississippian."  He thinks that the way Negroes are treated is terrible, and that Negroes should put up with segregation, so that things will improve. Henry James' Princess Cassamassima  is a re-issue of his slightest novel, and there is a new study of Pushkin out with some interesting reflections on the difficulties of translation Russian prose.

Flight, 20 May 1948


"Aeronautical Research" Aeronautical research is very expensive and very important, so it is good that the Commonwealth Advisory Aeronautical Research Council held its first meeting in Canberra on 2 April. 

"Sharing the Task" Flight imagines a scheme in which Britain and Canada do the heavy lifting, Australia provides a big desert for crashing things in, and the requisite gigantic wind tunnel is in New Zealand, which has far more hydroelectric power than it can use. 

"Swings and Roundabouts" In a very The Economist-style leading article, Flight eventually gets around to saying that BOAC will buy five Constellations from Aer Lingus at  £315,000, each. The Irish will realise a profit of  £65,000 per aircraft, which must look very good to them, but since BOAC gets Constellations for sterling, and can use them to replace the flying boats on the Australia route, it will save £1,150,000 a year on the cost of maintaining the maritime bases.

Someone hasn't got the memo. 

"Jet Trainer" Flight took a Meteor Trainer up for a spin and had enormous fun, hitting Mach 0.85 at low altitude, or 585mph.

"Confidence Trip: Successful Mission to South America in Tudor IV" Some Avro brass took a trip to South America in a Tudor IV and didn't die. Also, they flew most of the trip at 20,000ft or more, allowing them to avoid bad weather, and showing that pressurisation is valuable.

Here and There

General Peron has bought a Viking for his private use. The Gordon Bennett balloon race will be revived next year.
Or possibly 1983.

A picture of the new Rover gas turbine engine for cars is provided, helpfully supplied by sister magazine, The Autocar. It is very light, at 2lbs per hp, and has a 5" turbine that spins at 55,000rpm to give 100hp.

A nice writeup. The engine is a centrifugal type with a free turbine, intended to take a heat exchanger.  Turbine roller bearings are machined out of pure Nimonic blocks by Henry Wiggins, Ltd. By Stephencdickson - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
 The first two Stratocruisers have completed 286 hours of flight testing, and the third has been in the air for just less than two hours, and will be used for radio, fuel and icing testing. NPL is having an open day, for firms interested in seeing what the National Physical Laboratory is up to. Astral Aviation wants everyone to know that they are aerial photography specialists at Cowes Airport, Isle of Wight, have Trevor Gooch flying for them, and have an extensive list of satisfied customers in the fields of export promotion and airport survey. Mr. John Pomeroy, of Melbourne, has put in a claim for £A5,000,000 (approximately £4,000,000 sterling) from the United States Army for the invention of a shell that, he was told by the Australian Army Inventions Board, saved London. Mr. Pomeroy previously saved London in 1916 with his Pomeroy missile, which brought down the first Zeppelin, for which he received £20,000.

The online ANB biography starts out, "John Pomeroy, inventor and pieman . . . "

"HMCS Magnificent: Four Types of Aircraft Take Part in the Deck-landing Trials of the Canadian Carrier" HMCS Magnificent will shortly embark 19th Carrier Air Group, which has been working up at Eglinton, Northern Ireland, since last summer, and which consists of 803 Squadron (Sea Furies), and 825 Squadron, with Firefly IVs. In peparation, Magnificent has been doing deck trials with Furies, Fireflies and Spitfire XVIIs.

Civil Aviation News

More details of the Aer Lingus deal, which was motivated in part by Aer Lingus' enormous anticipated losses on its Atlantic service, of which BOAC and BEA will bear  £315,000 due to their 30% ownership share. The former Irish Constellations are Gold Plate models without sleeper accommodations, and will interlink with Qantas to provide four Australian services a week, taking four days, in contrast to 7 1/2 for the flying boat service, with refuelling stops at Tripoli, Darwin, Calcutta and Bastrali. The flying boat service will not continue, and the Hythes have already been offered for sale, although Plymouths will remain in service for the Singapore-Hong Kong route. In the last year, BOAC has had two fatal accidents, BEA two, and BSAA, four. Charter services have had 21 acidents in total, non-passenger services, 19. The Chief Inspector of Accidents report on the Hythe accident near Newport, Isle of Wight, in November was due to pilot error. Three SAAB Safirs have now been delivered to India. Trans-Canadian will offer two daily Montreal-London services from June, when the last North Star is delivered by Canadair. Spain has ordered two new Marconi VHF and two HF direction finders to supplement the Marconi DF equipment already installed at Madrid, Seville, Barcelona and Bilbao. BEA has made all meals served on Viking and Dakota flights free, again on internal and external services. Drinks from the bar are still subject to charge. A seven ton propeller shaft being flown out to Calcutta on a Scottish Airways Liberator is the heaviest single piece of machinery yet carried by a British civil aircraft.

"Napier Research and Development on Ducted Spinners"  Napier introduced the ducted spinner in combination with an annular radiator mounting on the latest Sabre, and tested it in 1946 to confirm that the cooling gains from ducting air flow across the radiator matrices offset the increased weight of the spinner. It did, showing that it was a good idea to steal this idea from BMW, after all. Napier went on to try the ducted spinner on the Naiad. They worked fine, and Napier has provided ducted spinners for other manufacturers' turboprops. There are some nice charts showing significant thermodynamic improvements, especially in climb to 20,000ft, although only with certain ducting layouts, so it is not an exact science.

R. C. O. Lovelock, W.C., RAFO, "What Are the Chances: Some Thoughts on the Short-Service and Permanent Commissions and the Qualifications Desired" The reintroduction of short service commissions raises the question of what chance a short service officer might have of winning a permanent commission, and what qualifications the Air Force might be looking for. It's an interesting article, although Lovelock likes to talk about himself a bit much for me to take him seriously.

W. A. Hannan, "Towards Greater Air Safety: An Analysis of Some Recent Air Accidents With Suggestions for Reducing the Risk of Fire in Aircraft" Hannan disagrees with the proposal to substitute diesel fuel for more flexible fuel sources, and thinks that crash proof tanks would cut accident fatalities more than "safety fuel." He begins by analysing the American reports on air accidents published in Aviation Week, finding that of some 7,200 accidents in the United States in 1946 that resulted in fatalities excluding takeoffs and landings, ten of fourteen had human error as the main contributing factor, including maintenance error, that over half of all fatalities were in accidents at sea, with fire at landing killing 36%, ground collisions in flight 12%, and mechanical accidents in flight, 7%. After discussing improvements in training and navigational equipment, he jumps briskly over to his argument for crash proof tanks, which consists of claiming that crashproof tanks will save lots of lives.

"Air India International Demonstrates New Equipment and Announces Plans" Air India International will operate its three Constellations on a twice-a-week Bombay-London service. Air India Constellations are very nice.

"Exercise DAWN" A joint exercise in the North Sea featured a cruiser squadron, Lincolns and Lancasters of Bomber Command, a carrier squadron headed by Implacable and its 17th Carrier Air Group (Furies and Fireflies) and an assortment of Fighter and Coastal Command aircraft.


C. P. Caunter writes that as long as we're dreaming about British light aircraft engines that don't exist, we should consider dreaming about two strokes. "Imperator" says that "Comparator"is wrong about American multi-wheel undercarriages,which will prove themselves in service on the XC-99 and no doubt soon be adopted on the Brabazon. J. R. Gould writes with a spirited defence of the diesel aeroengine, which is all that and a porterhouse, too. (More fuel efficient and cheaper fuel, yes,but also able to run at a higher power level in cruising speed due to producing less heat, more producing less vapour, so safer. Rod Banks, the author concludes, clearly knows nothing about engineering, and is not aware that a good aviation diesel engine is available right now, which is strange. I think that Napier has one in its catalogue, and there are the American diesel radials that went into some of our tanks, but as far as I know, they're not actually available for installation.

Engineering, 21 May 1948

J. F. B. Jackson, "Centrifugal and Precision Steel Castings for Aircraft," Centrifugal casting is good for producing parts that are long and have a relatively small diameter, such as cylinder liners, but are not without their difficulties. By adopting a vertical axis of rotation instead of a horizontal, Jackson's group, working in 1943 at David Brown and Sons (Huddersfield) has overcome the tendency of the molten metal to form a "parabolic inside contour," introduced better control of the amount of metal, and can use internal partitions to produce multiple, asymmetric castings.

Not to get too carried away. The pieces are finished
with an acetylene torch that cuts away trailers.
Better control of annealing also allows the casting of quite precise pieces, which has been a problem with metal casting in the past. Much of the article is devoted to the details of modern casting practice. Did you know that they use linseed oil-impregnated molds, and infrared lamps to dry them out and reduce blowholing? The foundry used low-alloy steel of 1% chromium-nickel-molybdenum. Tests suggest that steel cast in this way is not much more susceptible to fatigue than forged pieces, and that creep resistance, dimensional stability, and resistance to thermal shock is also not that much inferior to wrought alloys. They are also more pressure tight, and machinability can be much improved by the addition of some sulphur.

A short piece notices that Ruhr coal output is up to 7.15 million tons against 6.42 million in February.

"The British Industries Fair" The affair was a success, Engineering thinks. Its coverage is notably less sales catalogueish than The Engineer, which presents the problem that it covers far more items, far more biefly, than its older rival. There's only one picture, of a Craven Brothers Boring and Turning Mill, which looks quite complicated, with wheels all over it. Is Craven Brothers associated with the guy who ran Vickers in the war? Sorry, I'm distracted. I'm really not sure how much I should cover, or at what length. There are things that seem odd (like an Enfield Cycle entry into the diesel engine market with a two-cylinder air-cooled 15hp engine that sounds like it might go into a stationary installation, but definitely not a motorcycle, some gas turbine engines, something called a "Turbovisory," which is a device for "indicating and recording the differential axial ezpansion between the stator and rotor of a steam turbine." Maybe Uncle George can explain this to me! I will then have to tell him about the electrical engineers at the fair, and all I will be able to talk about is some massive switchgears and circuit breakers for factories.

A short note mentions that steel and iron production in the United Kingdom has hit a record annual rate of 15.3 million tons.

"Portable Power Plant" Henry Meadows, Limited is paying for this article, because otherwise, who would care about its "Power Mule," a "straightforward" 94hp diesel suitable for, well, being ported? In much the same spirit is the new 450t overhead travelling crane commissioned for the US Navy Yard right here in San Francisco from American Bridge and Alliance Machinery. It is very colossal, and can lift an entire battleship turret as a unit.

This week's releases by the British Standards Association cover new standards for gas lighting units and fittings, and for "bell and call systems," which really are what they sound like, namely the after-hour buzzers that you have to lean on for a minute in hopes that your girlfriend will hear them over the rattly old fan in the tiny, boiling-hot office she shares with three other buyers' secretaries, and interrupts another late night looking at boring papers that aren't boring because they are about "fashion."  I thought she was going to be one of those ladies that squirts you with perfume!

Engineering's Regional Notes section has the usual, fascinating information about the amount of iron and steel pieces produced (of what kind), from South Wales to Cardiff, how much shipped, new blast furnaces, such as might be. It's not quite the same as the prewar years. I don't learn about the number of angles and bars produced, but it's pretty boring. Interspersed are short notes mentioning the death of N. A. Enticknapp, of GEC, an increase in the amount of electricity generated to 3,744 m kWh ub April, against 3,387 in the same month last year, vacancies in the board of the Royal Aeronautical Society, and a whole host of honourable engineering association meetings notices.


"Mechanical Failures" The Technical Report for 1938 of the British Engine and Boiler Insurance Company is out this month, after a mere ten year delay occasioned by the National Emergency. Mechanical failures caused by bad welding being interesting, extracts on those were published long ago. We are left here with exciting stories of negligence, installing an electrical motor giving twice as much power as a replacement, leading to a travelling crane overworking itself to death, and other exciting stories that are hard to generalise, and seem to me questionable choices for a leading article, but that's Engineering for you.

Leaving out an article about "Engineering Relics of the Midlands," in which antiquarian engineers report discovering old Crossley motors and the original patterns of the Boulton silverware factory, we move on to brief notes (again!) on water development in Scotland, the Building Research Station's new corps of observers who will go around the industry and collect information, and the centennary of John Laing and Sons.


J. Kestin, Ph.D., of Polish University College, London, thinks that instead of measuring physical quantities with three units (mass, distance, time), we should add in a fourth, independent measure of force. This has the problem that Newton's Second Law doesn't admit an independent force term, so it will have to be rewritten, which Kestin thinks is a perfectly reasonable thing to do, because the only job he could get was teaching Poles. I'm sorry. That's cray.

"The Iron and Steel Institute" This week's installment covers talks on creep, which seems to be related to intrusions in the steel from either deoxidisation or insufficient oxidisation.  Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Although inclusions that are not oxidisable are important, too, as in "dirty" steels. One author presents a theoretical model of how they affect creep resistance, by, as near as I can tell, leaving them out, as the math would be too complicated.

Notes from South America South Americans are eager to buy all sorts of British engineering things if someone would just loan them the money.

Sir Andrew McCance, D.Sc., FRS, "The Development of the Open Hearth Furnace" A bit more ancient history of the Siemens open hearth regenerative furnace slides insensibly into the modern work of the Open Hearth Committee, which has set a target of 17 casts a week to give 10 tons an hour from furnaces per 100 tons rated capacity, something that some American furnaces have achieved with oil-firing and by prewar British furnaces using higher-quality scrap, although it is currently beyond the capability of furnaces using high phosphorus British ore. It is hoped that this will prove a spur and stimulus to technicians.

Short notes mention the first issue of Transport Statistics, and a summer school in electron microscopy to be held at the Cavendish.

Commander (E) A. D. Bonny, "Effects of Non-contact Explosions on Warship Machinery Design" During the war, giant mines had a way of blowing ship's turbines and boilers right off their foundations and cracking them in the bargain. Designs therefore shifted from cast iron turbines to cast steel, but redesign, and, in particular, more resilient mountings were required. Various expedients were attempted, but rubber mountings show the most promise.

Notes on New Books covers Wilson on CRTs, a National Institute of the Blind history of "dilution" with blind workers, who proved more than worth their pay in the late war, Hesse on Engineering Tools and Processes, the new McGraw-Hill materials handbook, much extended by all the new materials of the war years, Tulling on the locomotives of southern Britain, Samuels on the law of trade unions and Elford on coal mining in Australia.

Engineering Illustrated Patent Record notes an instrument mounting from Elliot Brothers, a gas turbine bearing from Metrovick and a moving frame for stripping coal from a seam face by Mayor and Coulson.

E. A. Smith, "Colloidal Graphite in Assembly Lubrication" is about, well,

Time, 24 May 1948


Sergio Tolente likes Time because it is anti-communist, and wishes that it was cheaper over in Italy. Thomas Ashworth is very upset at Time for making fun of Katharine Hepburn's voice. Several correspondents are upset about Mayor Curley of Boston. Patrick Skinner points out that just because the Beaverbrook Press has come out against the Marshall Plan doesn't mean that the British people will follow it like sheep, since many take other papers, and many who take the Beaverbrook papers don't always agree with the editorial line. Helen Bugbee is upset about communists, Stanley Kramer telegraphs that credit is due to his backers for the success of his Screen Play effort. The publisher writes with more details of Ye Yun Ho[still alive in 1959], "ardent graduate of Korea's Presbyterian Theological Seminary" and now a missionary to the scavengers who work Seoul's municipal garbage dump.

National Affairs

The first page-and-a-half is taken up with Wallace-baiting over Molotov's recent "peace offensive," and Secretary Wallace's open letter response. Arthur Vandenberg is still pushing forward with the Western Union, and the fact that the Russians' recognised the new state of Israel is sinister, somehow, because only the United States is allowed to recognise Israel. Stassen is losing ground in Oregon to Dewey. Vandenberg's candidacy is gaining momerntum. The meat packing plant strike in the Midwest is failing, and this has led to picket line violence and the call-out of the Minnesota National Guard for the first time in sixteen years. The Chrysler strike is also fading, as Chrysler is in no hurry to go back to work, due to the steel shortage. Walter Reuther is still in hospital, as the shotgun attack last month broke his arm, which remains in suspension, and doctors feel that sedatives will hamper his recovery. Segregation in Washington is still a national disgrace. The Catholic War Veterans' attack on protestors picketing The Iron Curtain in Union Square was Wallace's fault, somehow. Louisana's Earl Long is not going to lose the "Ridiculous Southern Governor" contest with Jim Folsom when he's got a whole inaugural ball to play with.
The Kansas GOP is split about letting 83-year-old Arthur Capper run for another term in the Senate, on the grounds that, just maybe, a 90-year-old shouldn't be in charge of the peace treaties. The AEC reports that the recent Marshall Islands tests featured not one, but three atomic bombs of a new and improved design. The conclusion is that America has enough bombs to test. (If you were following the rumour mill, people were saying that there was a hitch in the production line last year. I don't know how true that is, but, ranked as a rumour, it ran rings around the "powerful new bomb" rumour we were hearing in '46. I think Time is referring to those rumours.)

Americana reports that Americans smoke a billion cigarettes a year, and that New York City officials say that vandalism cost the city 1000 trees, 11,000 square feet of windows, 500 wire trash baskets, 4500 light fixtures, and five miles of park bench slats last year. The Treasury says that it is losing a billion dollars a year through tax evasion and wants 10,000 more men to collect it. W. C. Wingo, of Memphsi, Tennessee, put a light on his electric mower so that he could cut his lawn at night, found that it was interfering with his radio-listening habits, and added a radio to his mower on top of the lights. His neighbours must be so proud! George Eiferman won the Mr. America contest this year, in the first example of Time printing beefcake that I can remember in a year or more. Oh, those good old war days --I suggested to Uncle George that it was because more women took Time during the war, and his eyes just twinkled as he said, "On the contrary!" Darn! How am I going to keep up with my spy friends if I don't keep my eye on the demi-monde?

(The vandalism numbers are pretty eye-popping, and so are the double entendres. The war, she was different.)

"Not Just Numbers" Time points out that America has only received 36,000 of an estimated 900,000 European DPs, and took a tour around the country to see how Marian and Irma Zielezinski, Vera Harvey and George Kalman were doing. Quite well, it turns out. There's "Room for lots more," Time concludes.
There are lots of Zielezinskis in the Shenandoah Valley, but Marian and Irma kept a low profile. 


"In and Out of the Potatoes" Time's full version of the "bilateral talks" fiasco manages to make the surreal events of the week look like Marshall's fault. Europeans, and Muscovites on the street are very disappointed. Jews, on the other hand, were pleased that partition and peacekeepers failed in the General Assembly, and stunned by America's rapid recognition. Now it is all up to the Jews, Arabs, and a UN mediator. Andrei Gromyko has been recalled, and Princess Elizabeth was a hit in France.

"Reluctant Dragon"

The British Governor left Haifa at midnight on a cruiser; the new Israeli cabinet was sworn in at the dais while the flag was being raised and the crowd sang the Hatikvah. The Arab Legion marched on Jerusalem in "tanks, armoured cars and trucks." Under the UN partition plan, the Legion will occupy Arab villages to the north and south of Jerusalem. In the south, the Egyptians seized Jewish settlements on the road to Gaza, while Syrian and Lebanese detachments attacked settlements and the Egyptian Air Force raided Tel Aviv. "But these were token attacks with token forces." The question is: How far with the Legion go. Its 8000 men, with an additional 2000--5000 in reserves, is the strongest Arab fighting force out of a theoretical total Arab force of 135,000 men, of whom 40,000 might be deployable, although only the Legion has the ammunition and supplies for a long fight. Abdullah is likely to hold back, conscious that the Israelis probably outnumber the full strength the Arabs can field.
Time thinks that Abdullah will make a deal with Israel and not move beyond the partition line. The problem is that it is not clear that the Israelis will, or even want to, follow through on a partition deal. Young men have flocked to the Irgun Zvai Lumi, increasing its strength from 4000 to 10,000, and Commander Menachim Begin has warned that his soldiers will fight for "all" of Palestine, including Transjordan.

In Europe, the British are in a tizzy about birds, the Belgian "crisis" has ended in total victory for Spaak,  Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands has abdicated, there was a sudden glut of bananas in Vienna last week, and Luigi Einaudi is the new President of Italy.

Korea's UN supervised election went off without a hitch, in spite of Communist threats of disruptive violence, only 35 lives were lost, and in spite of the Communist boycott, 92% of voters cast their ballot, with Syngman Rhee confirmed as chief of state, and with his party winning at least 54 of 200 seats in the Assembly, with 60 more Rhee supporters elected on "no party" tickets. Only three seats were taken by left wing or Communist candidates. Some American journalists have branded Rhee a "rightist," but Time points out that he wants to nationalise industry, plan the economy, and increase taxes on the rich, so they must be wrong. In the North, the Communist puppet government, led by Kim Il Sung, has raised an army of 100,000, armed with Soviet guns, vehicles and even aircraft. Kim has threatened to reunify the peninsula by force as soon as the occupation forces have left, and in the meantime is trying to force the South to pay for the electricity exported by North Korean dams by turning off the lights.

As usual, the bookended Latin American section mainly proves that Latins are excitable. The Canada story, on the other hand, is very interesting, covering the Saguenay Valley scheme in Quebec, which involves a shipping channel almost all the way to Lake St. John, and enough dams to produce 1.25 million kW, enough to make 1000t of aluminum a day at Arvida.

 Science, Medicine, Education

"Simulated Disaster" Last week, Pan-Am unveiled the "biggest and best" synthetic trainer ever, capable of simulating both disaster conditions and routine flights. It is a copy of a Stratocruiser cabin that can be made to act as though the fuel line is clogged, the wings were icing, the radio were knocked out, a fire in the baggage compartment, or a failure of the heating system. The cabin will even shake! This sounds a lot more impressive than my old Link Trainer!

"Not So Smart" Zoologist Professor N. Tinbergen pranks lower animals in various ways to show that they can be made fools of quite easily. Just don't shake his hand!

"Polluted Reservoir" Tropical medicine practitioners had a conference in Washington last week where they talked about preventing malaria with DDT and quinine substitutes, and celebrated the fact that returning Pacific veterans did not trigger an American malaria epidemic. The Rockefeller Institute's Doctor Norman R. Stoll pointed out that worms thrive in the tropics, home to half the human race and "a reservoir of food and raw materials for the rest of the world." Some 1889 million people have filariasis, 20 million onchocerciasis, and 114 million schistosomiasis, the worst of all, for which there are no new drugs.

"How to Grow Younger" The Public Affairs Committee has published this informative pamphlet by Dr. C. Ward Crampton, 70, chairman of the New York County Medical Society's committee on geriatrics and gerontology. He suggests a flat belly, high head, capable heart, alcohol in moderation, and more treatment for heart and artery ailments that make old age miserable.

"Experiment in Glass" So many windowpanes are being broken in Chicago schools that the Board has begun to reward schools with lower breakage rates with extra books, which has been quite successful. This year, it will offer radios, tape recorders and film projectors.  a heartwarming story of Crapo Cornell Smith[!], who lived the last eleven years of his life as an aging bachelor in the University of Michigan Student Union, then left it a million dollars, which was completely unexpected even though he was the grandson of Governor Crapo and a cousin of the Crapo Durants. Dan Arnstein is another rich man who gives money for scholarships, and Wellesley College announced this week that it was going to stop asking applicants for their race and religion, to remove even the suspicion that it had quotas, just like all the other colleges that ask for that information and don't use it.


On Wall Street, stocks are up and Cyrus Eaton is in trouble with the SEC. Eversharp, which thought it was going to corner the ballpoint pen market with the Biro, is in trouble after Reynolds managed to squat in its ice cream. Continuing on a theme, Robert R. Young is in trouble after the ICC nixed his plan to fiddle with shares and boards in such a way as, the ICC says, reduce competition in New York and Pennsylvania. It looks as though Butte Mining's new techniques have revitalised the Anaconda, which is hiring again.

State of Business reports that British carmakers have edged out Americans as the leading exporters to the rest-of-the-world, which we'd already heard, and that foreign competition was also biting into the airlines. Little Steel is fighting the gray market, housing starts were at 90,000 in April, up 34% over the year before, Westinghouse has cut the price of radios by 13% to 20%, and Colt has cancelled its union contract, which,  under Taft-Hartley, it is allowed to do, as the union's executive hasn't sworn that they are not communists. Howard Hughes has bought RKO and put another $5.4 million into his unreleased movies Mad Wednesday, Vendetta and Outlaw. 

Art, Press, Television, People

Time enjoyed an exhibition of Chinese art related to the Spring Festival this week, and a Eugene Berman retrospective. Berman is quite a famous painter, even though he is not dead, but he has gone to Mexico, which is almost the same thing.

Considering that he worked 3 hours a day,
I'm not clear how much  he needs a
vacation, or a new job, either.
Edmund Duffy, who has been doing political cartoons for the Baltimore Sun since 1924, is quitting the paper, taking a vacation, and entertaining better offers. Also departing is Stanley Woodward, sports editor of the New York Herald Tribune, after eighteen years. The reason Jack Burket has disappeared from the News is that he lifted a column, if anyone noticed. The American press in Greece thinks that George W. Polk of the New York Herald Tribune was murdered by the Greek government, and not the communists, as they claim. There are a few more details of Future, the London-based, Fortune-like paper that has been sidling into the limelight over the last few weeks. It is edited by Wolfgang Foges for C. Tennant and Sons, the chemical company. He has also taken over Chanticleer Press as a New York beachhead for Tennant's Adprint business, which also does Britain in Pictures. The one complication is that it has to publish on the continent, as it can't get paper in Britain.

"The Infant Grows Up" New television stations and cable lines keep opening up, although another 400 VHF relays are needed before Los Angeles can broadcast to New York, and Californians can see the World Series. There are now a million tvs in America, 60 stations. By 1954, if current trends hold, there will be 16 million tvs, 65 million viewers. There's still the problem of there being nothing but sports, bad music shows, talk, interview and quiz shows and amateur-hour plays to watch, but everyone says that Hollywood just has to make affordable television  movies soon, and that'll be that.  More people watch television than listen to the radio, even given the choices they have now, so it makes sense for NBC to push ahead, even if it did lost $19 million on TV last year. Then, since Time has some pages to kill, it treats us to the history of television. The future is bright.

Ladies, amirite?

Enrico Fermi misses the days when no-one cared about atomic scientists. Irene Selznick thinks that you need a business head to produce Broadway shows. Bishop William T. Manning looks back on his 82 years as seeing "the coming of the automobile . . . aviation, the two most terrible wars the world has ever known . . . the United Nations . . . the atomic age." It has been an "interesting" era. Mae West is coming back from London, Lana Turner going. Denmark's king and queen went on vacation in their hunting lodge, had their maid take sick, and had to do their own cleaning and vacuuming. Madam Chiang went to a Nanking garden party in quite a large hat, Al Shean turned 80, the contents of Evalyn Walsh McLean's Washington mansion were auctioned off, while Harry K. Thaw's villa was on offer, and Boake Carter's will disposed of $5,272 in assets, $119,398 in debts.

Russell McKinley Crouse has had his second child with Anna, Edward Dmytryk has married, Kathleen, Marchioness of Harrington, has died in a plane crash. (That's the Kennedy girl who married a British officer, if you don't follow these things.) Reverend Edward Flanagan, founder of Boy's Town, has died in Berlin, where he was advising the US Army on youth problems. Olga Stokowski has died, along with James Edward West and John Holmes Overton, senator from Louisana, friend of flood control, enemy of daylight savings.

The New Pictures

The new movies are Day of Wrath, which is "a study of the struggle between good and evil." Oh, that!  Anyway, it's about witches and souls in torment in a seventeenth century Danish town, and very artistic. The Brothers is about coarse people who are close to nature and in touch with their feelings, and, in the case of the brothers, with Patricia Roc, whom everyone would like to touch. Time thinks it is overdone, but that the Isle of Skye scenery is worth the ticket. The Woman in White is Wilkie Collins's mid-Victorian melodrama. Who? I ask, and Ronnie explains. Oh. Oh, I say. So, no surprise that it has "enough plot for a dozen ordinary movies," plus Sidney Greenstreet, Agnes Moorehead, John Abbot, John Emery and Eleanor Parker. It is impossible to be as frightened as you are supposed to be, but the movie is to be "savoured." Whatever! River Lady was supposed to be a solid little Yvonne de Carlo picture, but the screenwriters found a logging war so exciting that they set their typewriters on fire and produced a solid "sleeper," in which Helena Carrter has tons of fun.


Time liked John William De Forest's memoirs of the "Reconstruction" that happened in the South after the Civil War, because he thinks that everything was terrible, and that's the South, for you. Jean Malaquais' World Without a Visa appears top be a  novel about how glad the author was to be out of France during the war, and how depressed he is to be back. Could be wrong though, not going to read all those words! Max Lerner's Portable Veblen is for anyone who sees just the opportunity to check what Veblen thought about something, but can't, because their copies of his book are too heavy to carry around.  I asked Ronnie to explain Time's thing for Veblen, and now I know. (It seemed relevant. Institute men love Veblen, for some reason.)

Flight, 27 May 1948


"A Missing Link?" The GPO is beginning a trial of "live" mail delivery by helicopter in Norfolk, which is suitable due to being especially flat. It it is successful, the GPO will move on to deliver mail by helicopter in hilly parts of the country. Flight thinks that it should also try out "skyhook" pickup, as is being done in America. Then the mails will be really modern!

"ARB Independence" The British Air Registration Board is independent, and everyone agrees that it should be, but last year some Labour politician said something that implied that Labour might "nationalise" it, and at lunch the other day the minister said that it might be reorganised. Flight thinks that the only thing the ARB needs is public money, and if it doesn't get it with no strings attached, so much for independence. The leaders then finish off with a bit about charter airlines.

"Chislea Super Ace: Clever Design for Simplicity and Economy: Unusual Control System" Ronnie pointed out that Maurice Smith's review of the Super Ace was not kind, and that evidently won't do, because here is an unsigned review and discussion so that we will know all about the Chislea Super Ace.

"ARB Report: ICAO Standards Attained: Improved Examination Results" Talking about talking about international air regulation.

Books briefly reviews Jet Propulsion Design, by L. E. Nevill and N. F. Silsbee, before seguing into a correction and apology: The Jameson Engine has not passed its type test. Silsbee writes for Aero Digest, 'nuff said.

Civil Aviation News

As we've heard in the regular press, BOAC flies the most passengers per plane over the Atlantic. Flight found the Parliamentary Undersecretary's performance in the civil aviation debate disappointing, and is discouraged to hear that the Hermes may not be suitable for the Hong Kong run. ICAO is to have a special meeting on navigation to talk about not flying into mountains. US airlines flew 71% of passengers across the Atlantic in July-December 1947, a total of 81,000 (112,000 in total), of whom 13% were American citizens. There were 4300 scheduled crossings, 3100 by American airlines. ICAO is standardising measurements on metric for everything except miles, knots and miles per hour. The 20 November Anson accident in which the pilot and one passenger were killed was caused by the plane flying into a mountain due to the pilot not knowing where he was. Sigh. Captain Neville Stack is going out to India as general manager of Oriental Airlines. The Skyways Dove that crashed near Privas, south-west of Valence, on 13 May was the first fatal accident the company has had in two years of operation. Canada may introduce all first-class-mail-by-air soon, and BEA will have a Viking service to the French Riviera starting in the summer. Exchange controls? What are those?

Maurice Smith, "SAAB To-Day: Current Swedish Civil and Military Designs: An Underground Factory" Wing Commander Smith went to Sweden and looked at various planes (there are lots of pictures) and took a trip down to the famously secret underground factory.

Roy Pearl, "Inaugural Flight: To South Africa on the First Springbok Flying-boat Service" An exotic, romantic travelogue for a service that is likely to be cancelled the moment the Stratocruisers arrive.

Two years. The service lasted just under two years. Photo by Allan Street. Source.

Here and There

Air Services Training is having an open day at Hamble. Miles Vandegrift tells a story about being forced down on a frozen lake in Alaska, where upon he attached some wooden slats to his wheels and took off like a ski plane. A Bristol Freighter went down to Portugal and put on a show. Aerial photographs have recently spotted a Roman villa at Bury St. Edmunds. The Australians are experimenting with flying beef carcasses around. Again. There is no news!

"New Type Bristol 170 (Military Version): A Made-to-Measure Trooper-Freighter" Bristol continues to plug its Freighter.

"Exercise DAWN: Navy Attacked from Both Elements: Submarines All Detected" This is a continuation of the 20 May article. The Naval squadron was successfully attacked in the morning by Seafires with rockets, Firebrands with torpedoes, Seafires in low-flying attack, as they used to say, and Lincolns at 20,000ft, rather later than expected due to supercharger trouble.In the afternoon, there was no trouble from the air, but the squadron saw off submarine attacks. Another Lincoln/Lancaster attack, behind "Window," came in during the morning, and the RAF pronounced the Navy "wiped out," to which the Navy replied, "No, you're wiped out. Twice over. Nah nah."

"Goodwill Hornets: Swedish Visit by No. 65 Squadron" Pressure-pattern Flying in Single-Seaters" The point here is that the Hornets navigated to a weather map on their flight to Sweden, in spite of having only a pilot to do the navigating. Impressive! One Hornet had the new G4F compass, the rest Magnesyns, with E2s as standbys. This is important, because the Hornet can fly practically forever --2600 miles with auxiliary tanks!

In shorter news, the RAF was in action after an Egyptian Air Force attack on the airfield at Haifa that killed four airmen. Flight was not invited to Thornton, but reminds everyone that it was there, first.


G. P. Gass thinks that the Tiger Moth will do the RAFVR fine until the Prentice shows up. H. G. Conway, of the Royal Aero Club, points out that "Comparator's" comments on American undercarriages was gibberish. G. R. Barratt will not give up on aircraft diesels, which he deems economic for low wing-loading aircraft flying at higher altitudes of perhaps 40,000ft.

The Engineer, 28 May 1948

A Seven-Day Journal

Arthur Gouge gave the thirty-sixty annual Wilbur Wright Memorial Lecture this week, in which he envisioned aircraft growing to the largest practical size for the route, as transport generally did. These would be, perhaps, aircraft the size of the Brabazon and carrying between 200 and 300 passengers. The trip would take from nine to ten hours, and size would probably be limited by aerodrome cost. A preliminary report on the 23 May grid failures says that these first failures since 1934 were caused by increasing demand leading to ever heaver loads, and an unexpected temperature change leading to air temperatures ten degrees lower than forecast, leading to an increase over expected demand of 190,000kwH. An attempt was made to import the shortfall, which mostly came through the King's Lynn-Norwich line, which suffered a conductor joint failure, which caused the conductor to fall to the ground and short, which caused circuit breakers to trip all over, and a general grid failure. There is as yet no explanation for the 8:54PM failure in the Bedford-Luton line that led to a widespread shutdown in the eastern and southeastern regions.

The British Paint Manufacturers' Association has an export plan, and the Ministry of Commerce for Northern Ireland has plans for public transport. The Fifth Conference of Tank Superintendents is to be held at the National Physical Laboratory in September. I have a feeling that Tank Superintendents are senior enough for summer vacations!

E. C. Poulteney is off to ride the rails in Pennsylvania, where he is looking at "Remarkable Freight Locomotives," specifically, the Pennsy's Q2s.

"Electricity in Scottish Quarries" Given the progress of the Scottish hydroelectric scheme, let's look in on electrically-powered brute force machines for smashing and crushing rock, which are quite interesting.

The Engineer sent a correspondent to the Royal Society's Conversazione at Burlington House, where it saw a phase-contrast microscope, a Kosters gauge interferometer, an ultrasonic memory system for an electronic digital computing machine, shown by the University Mathematical Laboratory, Cambridge, consisting of the EDSAC (electronic delay storage automatic calculator). Numbers are "stored" as pulses in a column of mercury, which are "reconverted to electric pulses, and, after amplification and shaping, are routed back to the input." The Explosives Department of ICI showed a stop clock accurate to 1/100th of a second, with a nice little electronic circuit producing timing steps of 1.4 milliseconds. The Clarendon showed a 16 mega-electron volt bevatron.

EDSAC. Maurice Wilkes and Bill Renwick, pictured. CC BY 2.0,
"Experimental Electron Microscope" The Plessey Company showed off its new 20,000 diameter magnification microscope at the Physical Society Show last week.

What that looks like
"A Draughting Machine for Isometric Projection" The Engineer was invited to see the new Perspector A, by Isometric Projections, Ltd. It has very high precision limits, frictionless operation, and is very smooth. A gearbox saves the labour of plotting the isometric projection by hand, with the aid of a reduction chart.

Metallurgical Topics

The Engineer summarises the annual report of the Verein Deutscher Eisenhuettenleute for 1946--7, as printed in Stahl. Dominant themes are the use of poor-quality German iron ore, and the use of oxygen.

Successes with copper-aluminum-silicon alloys are reported, with an alloy containing 7% aluminum and 2% silicon showing most promise in terms of favourable combination of hardness and ductility. A recent paper on the use of the Jominy test on aluminum shows that this test of the hardenability of steel can also be applied to aluminum. E. H. Boyer  has a paper in Iron Age on the low temperature (sub-zero) treatment of steel, which contributes to hardening before tempering.


"Nationalisation at Scarborough" The Engineer thinks that Labour's retreat from nationalisation at Scarborough had as much to do with recognising reality over ideology as with concerns about the upcoming general election. Nationalisation can't necessarily do very much about either wages or achieving "full technical efficiency."

"The UN Atomic Energy Commission" The UN AEC has been disbanded, which isn't news, but in its wake it left an interesting report about the radioactive waste residue of atomic piles. About 1lb is produced per 10 million kWh, and unless a use is found for it, disposing of this waste may be quite a challenge.


Professor W. T. David died this week at the relatively young age of 62. For many years Professor of Civil and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Leeds, he started with the gas engine manufacturer Mather and Platt, moved on to the civil service, became a professor in 1920, and gave "several papers." Nice work if you can get it!


F. L. Watson thinks that the future of the British machine tool industry is fairly secure if the firms are left to get on with it with a bit less "guiding," "encouraging" and "directing." Ir. H. C. King excretes a very long letter about how management is more than an art, if less than a science, which I did not read because it is just so long! Edward Livesay writes from Victoria to correct the correction of his correction of E. C. Poulteney on the Crowsnest Pass railways. Still better than the guy who wants to rewrite F=ma so that thermodynamics is easier.

The Iron and Steel Institute

Papers on segregations, inclusions and welds are discussed. It is interesting to see just now much micro-radiography is now involved in experimental work with steel.

"Thornton Research Centre" Shell invited The Engineer to see its Thornton Research Laboratory. Started immediately before the last war as an aero-engine research laboratory to keep pace with progress in fuels and lubricants, it was open in 1940, fully operational in 1942. Many engines were being tested in cells, while the metallurgical section was testing a method of prolonging valve life by coating them with thin alloy film. The chemical section showed off work on a new chemical soap replacer, called Teepol, for softening hard water, a valuable commodity in the dyestuff industry. Another additive on display was Ionex, for rust protection, and it wa s at this stage that Admiral of the Fleet Sir John D. Cunningham gave an address of thanks to Shell for being such fine hosts.

"Telecommunications Research Establishment" Just guess who also gave an exhibit! That's right! The TRE! The TRE was founded with six workers back in 1935. It now has 300 scientists in three departments, working on radar, physics and engineering. For demonstration purposes, it showed off Gee, Rebecca and Eureka. It also showed a dc magnetic amplifier for work from low-impedance sources such as thermocouples and capable of detecting signals of powers on the order of a one ten-billionth of a microwatt at frequencies below 10 per second(!) There was also an electronic digital computer, and an ingenious servomotor system with photo-sensitive cell and servo link, to be fitted to a telescope at the Greenwich Observatory that will be able to follow a star at night automatically. Thermocouple work was demonstrated, including one that detects hot spots on rotors. TRE also has a 15MeV synchrotron. The Engineering Department doesn't just do drawings for the scientists, it also works on new materials, finishes and constructional methods.

R. D. Cardiff sent in a brochure about their new electric hoist, in five sizes from 5 hundredweight to five tons.

(How many shillings are there in a fortnight?)

M. Jean Chevalier, "Gabriel Jar's Visit to Britain in 1764" After peace was signed in 1763, a man named Gabriel Jars visited Britain and had many very interesting observations which Mr. Chevalier will now share.

South African Engineering Notes

South Africa has a lot of coal, says a recent report, but it is mostly terrible coal, and mostly in Natal, which is inconvenient, although there is good coal in Transvaal.

Industrial and Labour Notes

British exports are up, and although imports are also up and the adverse balance of trade is quite serious, the Treasury notes that it has been calculating it wrong by omitting the fact that it comes in British ships, resulting in a significant cut in the global numbers, while what was actually imported doesn't lead to any "direct drain on our gold and dollar reserves." The Engineering Association is upset that the Purchase Tax policy is going to ruin engineering. The AEU reminds everyone that it made serious sacrifices on union practices and work safeguards during the war, and it wishes that these were recognised, instead of more being demanded on a "that was then, this is now" basis.

French Engineering Notes

French hydroelectric power is at or above its Monnet Plan quota. The heavy industry showing at the Paris Fair was disappointing, as there were few novelties compared with the Swiss and Italians. British stands were very discouraging, since due to export restrictions they could not deliver in 1948. This was especially disappointing in the case of the Armstrong Siddeley air-cooled diesels. SNCF has had to scale back capital expenditures due to rising prices, which will significantly delay electrification of French railways. A major order of tipping and flat railcars is expected shortly.

Notes and Memoranda

The Central Line extension to Hainault, currently used by rolling stock on its way to and from the depot, will be opened to passenger traffic in May, the London Transport Board has announced. The London Airport hangar extension scheme is noted. HMCS Magnificent will take a composite squadron of Sea Furies, Sea Hornets and a Sea Vampire back to North America with it to sh ow them off. The AEC is holding a school on engineering aspects of atomic energy in Oak Ridge. The NPL is having an open day for the public.


Sidney Cross, of Detroit, is upset that Newsweek is reporting that Walter Reuther's assailant escaped in a maroon Ford, because some people don't remember it that way, even if that's what the press is saying. C. J. Wilson reminds everyone not to put their fingers in electric light sockets, because Newsweek is reckless. Garland P. Rande, of Brooklyn, thinks that an American Foreign Legion would be an awful idea, because, first, they are mercenaries, and, second, their employer would end up itching for shocking foreign adventures[!] The publisher's letter reports that some doctors thought that the article on Vitamin B was boffo.

The Periscope reports that Halleck and Baldwin are campaigning for the GOP VP nomination, that Republicans think that the 70 air group plan might be their strongest campaign plank, even better than Taft-Hartley, anti-communism, the tax cut, and "a general trend to strip away Federal controls and return business to free enterprise." The 70 group proposal polls at 90%. The results for the others is not given. Arthur Hill, head of the National Security Resources Board, is expected to resign over Truman's refusal to adopt his national mobilisation plan, that the DNC can't raise money, that the Army's White Sand test range is being made a permanent base, with the scientists working there to be increased from 2200 to 3000, that Washington lobbyists now bill on a "sliding scale," that Congressional moves for an inquiry into whether the British are using American aid to help the Arabs is provoking a surge of anti-Americanism in Britain, that the Antarctic winter is putting a chill on the situation in the Falkland islands.

In Greece, two potential rightist dictators, General Alexander Papagos and Admiral Peter Voulgaris are jockeying for position. The State Department thinks that America is "winning the cold war," and that Soviet shows of conciliation are intended to lull the world into a false sense of security, so that the old tactics "can be revived with safety." "If it wasn't for the bomb, the Soviets would have occupied all Europe by now." "Koumintang dissidents" have threatened to "take the law into their own hands" unless Chiang implements promised reforms. Emperor Hirohito has published a book about his research on shellfish. Zionists expect an American loan as soon as "the status of the new Jewish state is cleared." The British are apoplectic, the Canadians are trying to mediate. The War Assets Administration will take over the Hughes Hercules next month, and has no idea what to do with it. Auto shows will not resume this year, because there is nothing to show. Ford's "jet-like" tail-light will appear next year, at which point hopefully Buick's Dynaflow mechanism will be in the black --that is, its production costs will fall below sale price.

I, uhm . .. So, anyway, the LeSabre had a Dynaflow transmission, among other things. By edvvc - originally posted to Flickr as General Motors Le Sabre, CC BY 2.0,

John L. Lewis has hired eight new press agents. The oleomargarine fight caused such a deep rift in the Congressional farm bloc that new farm legislation may be blocked for a year. Congressional spending will probably run ahead of the Presidential budget by $2 billion., which is why the GOP doesn't talk "economy" any more.

Lady Windermere's Fan has been recast and retitled as The Fan. Fred Astaire is coming out of his short-lived retirement to do Easter Parade for MGM and White Christmas[?], with Bing Crosby, for Paramount. Walt Disney will probably go into television as an independent producer rather than make a deal with a video outfit or network. The untimely deaths of Tom Breneman and Dud Williamson, and the hospitalisation of three other radio Masters of Ceremonies has led radio networks to consider using two MCs in audience participation shows due to the physical stress involved. Jimmy Durante and Jack Carson are looking for sponsors, with no luck, so far. Mussolini's diary has been published, and Barbara Ward, foreign editor of The Economist, has the thrilling, accurate and optimistic The West at Bay coming out in the fall, as is Stefan Heyn's novel, Hostages. 

Washington Trends reports that there might be a June session of Congress. If not, the defence appropriations must pass, but the public housing, minimum wage, anti-lynching and Mundt anti-communism bills will die. It's all down to the draft legislation, which is causing a jam in both Houses, in spite of wide support. Even though other anti-discrimination measures will die, the Russell Amendment will provide the GOP and the Democrats a chance to spar over race. Vandenberg's foreign policy will get through the Senate, much to the disgust of a bloc of senators who want to abolish the UN. Dewey's win in Oregon puts him ahead of Stassen and Taft, although Vandenberg supporters think that the three are tight enough to throw the convention to the senator. Democratic strategists despair of being able to hold the solid south in November due to anti-discrimination, and think that Virginia and North Carolina will be pushed into the GOP column. Truman may let the south fall where it may, and concentrate on the north, where his Palestine policy has strengthened him in New York, Illinois and other northern centres. Some Republican strategists hope to pick up Oklahoma, Missouri, West Virginia and Maryland, or at least do well in Congress there.

National Affairs reports that bilateral talks between America and Russia are probably off the table, and that Senator Vandenberg is  running the country. The Hungarian ambassador to the United States, Rustem Vamberry, has resigned, and will be staying in the United States to finish his book (he's a criminologist) and apply for American citizenship. The Navy is not going to get its gigantic aircraft carrier through Congress. "If they can't get thr thing through the Panama Canal, how the hell do they think they can get it through the Rules Committee." The Hawaii statehood bill was killed, just as Auntie Grace guessed, and the President's veto on FBI loyalty tests for AEC members was overridden. The President celebrated by going to the Girard College for orphans, then returned to Washington to sign the 70 group bill, push for Alaskan statehood, and make Charles F. Brennan the new Secretary of Agriculture. Tom Dewey is extremely teed-off that the party is responding to his claim to be the only GOP candidate who can beat the President with the observation that since Truman is in so much trouble with Wallace and the South, the Republicans can afford to run any old Dick or Harry, instead. "That's not how it works, you morons," the candidate who has actually been a governor, patiently explains. Winning in Oregon seems to have been more persuasive. We'll see. (Frankly, I'd love to see the GOP run Taft and win. A term of his kind of politics would turn the country right back to the New Deal!) Russell Long also gets a long profile, and there's also a long bit about Frank Keefe's attempt to remove the Communist members of the board of the Union of Public Employees. John Howard Lane and Dalton Trumbo, convicted of contempt of Congress last year for not testifying before HUAC, were sentenced this week to $1000 fines and a year in jail. Harry Hopkins' memoirs, just out, emphasise that he would have been the Democratic candidate for President in 1940 were it not for his near-fatal illness in the summer of 1940.

Washington Tides with Ernest K. Lindley is on about Vandenberg's plan for local security pacts  some more. Whatever you make of the "anti-dark horse" push, Vandenberg is coming on just at the right time for his presidential ambitions.

Foreign Affairs (actually, a separate "United Nations" section, for some reason) has

"The Test and the Weakness" It is about how the United Nations cannot act without the leadership of a great power, which is why it hasn't been able to resolve the Palestine situation. I won't go over the parliamentary manoeuvres in any detail, but with the Americans, Russians, and British sitting on the sidelines, it is just a rush to war, unless UN mediator Count Folk Bernadotte can find a resolution. The British have put an end to Egyptian air raids, but otherwise feel that, between Zionist Anglophobia and British "anti-Zionism," they cannot do anything with the Jews, which is why they are backing Transjordan.  The Jewish quarter of Jerusalem is about to fall, while elsewhere, Jewish forces took Acre.

"Socialists Sing the Third-Year Blues" The Labour Party conference in Scarborough is facing "third year blues," which have led Herbert Morison to confine the government's ambitions to one more nationalisation this term, that of the steel industry. At the same time, the party is turning conservative in foreign policy, complaining that the recent Molotov initiative effectively "stabbed it with an olive branch." Meanwhile, Princess Elizabeth had a gay old time in Paris, although the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland the other usual suspects were appalled at the terrible example she set by attending the races and night-club dancing on Sunday. "A regrettable example before the youth of the nation." Anti-communist Berlin unionists walked out of the Freie Deutsche Gewerkschaft Bund, vowing to create their own union, no communists allowed. In Moscow, US embassy authorities revealed that Sgt. James M. McMillin, the cypher clerk who deserted his post last week to join communism, had been "seduced and exploited" by "Mrs. Galina Dunaeva Biconish, young, beautiful and experienced Soviet agent." Oh, ho! "Experienced!" Wink! Wink! Newsweek patriotically hopes that it was all some clever American trick, that McMillin was taking advantage of the gorgeous Galina, rather than the other way around.

It's portable!

"Toward Self Support" The Japanese government is set on a course of reindustrialisation for peaceful purposes, and has erected a new statue to a loyal dog that used to wait for its master every day at a suburban rail station. The old one was melted down for munitions in the war. I would almost take these stories to be related, except there's one about the infighting in the Koumintang between them. Oh, wait, no, all three stories are related, and the moral is that Japan wasn't so bad, after all. I managed to restrain my eye rolling for the Moderator of the Church of Scotland, but they're going round like a fair-ride now. Also, the Koumintang printed a trillion yuan note the other day when it meant to print a billion note. Or the other way round. Which way to the lifeboat deck, again?

"ERP in France" France is looking a great deal more prosperous this year, with food on the table and goods in the windows. Industrial production has essentially hit 1938 levels on the back of coal recovery to 13% above the 1938 level, but this is still not enough. It needs Ruhr coal at least, if not American, and can only get it with American dollars. It also needs cotton and wool. On the bright side, the wheat crop has come roaring back from the freeze of 1947, notwithstanding the neglect of the war years, which will keep France from regaining its prewar harvest until 1950 or 1951, until when it requires American wheat. It also needs fodder and fertiliser imports and new equipment, particularly tractors. By 1952, the Monnet Plan envisions France exporting grain, milk and meat products to other Western European countries. Further gains will be made on hydroelectric, and as the economy recovers, the countryside will hopefully disgorge its hoarded gold and further improve the exchange situation. Unless the communists take over, or France fails due to Latins being excitable.
It's nice that someone is acknowledging the French recovery that is obvious in all of the statistics from The Engineer. Maybe The Economist will even re-evaluate its priors!
"Vinegar Budget" Canada's new federal budget is very disappointing, on account of it racks up a $650 million surplus, to be spent almost entirely on paying down the public debt rather than on tax relief. Also, Canadian fighter ace, George "Buzz" Beurling was killed when he crashed his Norseman this week on his way to join the Israeli air force.


"Showdown for the Third Round" Newseek's cover story is about the "third round" of postwar wage negotiations that might or might not blow the lid off the cost of living. Since Taft-Hartley makes strikes much harder, it is possible that "might not" is the operative word, but whoever put the hit on Walter Reuther wasn't taking any chances. The story is that while wages and profits are up, the take-home earnings of shareholders are not, and they are cross.

"Avery's Backseat" Speaking of cross shareholders, Sewell Avery was removed from effective control of Montgomery Ward this week due to sales not keeping pace with Sears, Roebuck, and various resignations from his office.

Trends and Changes reports that Pure Oil claims the world's deepest producing oil well in the world, at 2.7 miles down in the Wind River Valley, Wyoming. The Federal Reserve predicts further rises in the price level this winter due to military spending and the increasing money supply.

"Lifesaver for TWA" TWA was in trouble last week as a loan from Equitable Life Assurance came due, and Jack Frye, the President who negotiated it, bailed out of the boardroom. Howard Hughes refused to put in more money, and it looked as though the airline was going down when the CAB suddenly stepped in with a new airmail contract at a better rate, with an advance payment big enough to pay off the Equitable loan. Just a coincidence, the CAB says.  Given the amount the airlines are losing, they'll need more from CAB then piecemeal adjustments. They can't recapitalise unless someone invests, and who would invest when they're losing this much money?

My one regret is that I can't cover last week's issue, with its idiotic Hazlitt column predicting the imminent collapse of global agriculture due to price controls. 

What's New reports that Parlyn, Ltd., has a new hair dryer that looks like a scarf or turban, which contains a mineral compound to absorb dampness. Hot-R-Cold Pak has a Vinylite plastic bag containing a sealed-in-liquid that can act as a hot or cold pack, after being heated in boiling water or cooled in a refrigerator. The American Meat Institute Foundation has found a chemical mixture that keeps lard sweet for up to two years. Potato chips and pastries treated with the chemical stay fresh up to 50 times longer.

Business Tides, with Henry Hazlitt is on about exchange controls, which get in the way of business freedom, and are wrong, and that it is "fantastic for America to be draining its resources in order to subsidise and prolong a totalitarian device that disintegrates and strangles international trade, makes free enterprise impossible, retards European recovery, and intensifies and perpetuates the very 'dollar shortage' that it pretends to cure."  Everything would be fine if Britain just cut domestic consumption by, oh, say, 3%.

Science, Medicine, Education

"Supersonic Tunnel" The new supersonic tunnel at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds is, well, new to Newsweek, which discusses it at length. More interesting is the guardedly-revealed information that University of Chicago physicist Dr. John A. Simpson, while flying between Lima, Peru and Spokane, Washington, in a B-29, discovered that free neutrons are hard to find in the atmosphere at the equator, but turn up in increasing numbers as the flight approaches the Pole. The gradiant was so consistent over multiple flights that Simpson believes that it might be used to guide the automatic navigators of unmanned missiles.

The Medicine section leads off with a session at the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association in Washington in which Dr. Florence Powdermaker and Dr. Joseph Abraham reported on the success of their technique of getting schizophrenics to return to reality by playing with puppets. Said success being measured by anecdotes about schizophrenics learning to "speak like human beings." Some have been discharged, but the pesky hospital won't refer to them as "cured."

Colour me skeptical, especially since the next article, "Quirks of the Mind," checks in with Drs. N. W. Winkleman and M. Harold Book, who read a paper demonstrating that schizophrenic brains are noticeably different in autopsy, suggesting an organic cause for the condition. Drs. Frederick Zimmerman, Bessie Burgermeister and Tracy J. Putnam report further successes in the use of glutamic acid to treat mentally retarded children. Their "intelligence drug" shows a gain of five to six months in mental age in treating children with Mongolism. Drs. Joseph Fetterman and Victor M. Victoroff report that a mixture of Mesantoin and dilantin sodium is even better for epilepsy than dilantin sodium by itself, a well-established epilepsy drug. Dr. N. K. Rickles explains exhibitionism as the product of people with excessively rigid moral codes who just "snap. " It all has to do with possessive mothers, and Rickles reports that exhibitionists are often very embarrassed by their behaviour, and even try to deny it!

He also reports that it's hard to cure, which is especially funny considering the tendency to escalate to sexual assault that he doesn't mention.

"X-Ray Telescope" Even at the limits of human tolerance, existing x-ray flouroscopes produce frustratingly indistinct images. You would think that someone would be working on an x-ray lens, and Westinghouse Electric has, with an amplifier developed by John W. Coltman. That's not how telescope works! Although since our idea of how lenses work is also hopelessly confused. (Believe me, I did not learn this stuff easily!), fair's fair.  There's also a longish bit about those surgeons who take out bladders for bladder cancer. They now have an "artificial bladder" made by snipping out a length of intestines, which I'd say more about except that I'm so clenched down there that my seat would come up with me if I stood up right now.

"Engineers for Highways" The American Association of State Highway Officials reports that a survey of engineering school graduates shows that only some 600 are planning to join state highway departments when they graduate, out of 3,358 graduating civil engineers, when the  need is for 5000 more engineers to deal with the likely increase in the number of vehicles from 38 million to 50 million over the next five years. The main cause is low pay, and the Association is lobbying for increased pay and other, non-monetary improvements.

Radio, Press, People

"Nice Apples, Today, Ma'am" Stanley Joseloff's Storecast system broadcasts advertisements from remote microphones hidden on grocery store salesfloors, much like the Muzak broadcast, only it's annoying advertising that seems to come from under the potatoes. He thinks that it is the next big thing.
Storecast seems to have been much more important for bringing commercials to retail soundscapes than for making the potatoes talk. Also, Joseloff brought us the Eddie Cantor Show.

"Money Troubles" At the National Association of Broadcasters convention, much lip service to community standards, considerable worry about the amount of red on the ledger due to the threat of television and the fact that there are just too many AM and FM broadcasters. Even more alarming, FCC chairman Wayne Coy predicted that FM would basically replace AM.

The Press starts off with a celebration of "25 years of the Nebbs," that is, the cartoon written by the Baers and syndicated nationally through the Chicago Tribune before moving on to 48's bankruptcy reorganisation hearings and a feud between Wesbrook Pegler and rising columnist John Crosby. Colonel Robert Ginsburgh is the Air Force's new press secretary, and Newsweek has more details about the murder of George Polk, although it is still the same story as in Time. 

Two fifth graders who stole an Ercoupe in Oklahoma City and flew it to Cheyenne explained that they learned how to fly from comic books. Fred Beal regained his citizenship this week. Shirley Temple invited the press to photograph her 3-month old daughter, Linda Susan Agar this week. John C. Virden, special assistant to the Commerce Secretary, has had to resign, because his daughter, Euphemia, took a job as a telex operator for Tass News Agency. Actress-Model Gregg Sherwood has been crowned "The Hair," by the Creative Hair Stylists of America, with Marlene Dietrich as The Leggs, Marie McDonald as The Body and Anita Colby as The Face. Greta Garbo was The Feet. Psychiatrist Dr. Henry Hary said that people get their teeth straightened not because of cosmetic reasons, but because the pain will allow them to atone for their sins. He thinks they should go for therapy, not dentistry. William Keenan has been appointed postmaster of Deborgia, Montana, the town he moved to two years ago to avoid the atom bomb. Thomas Wasson, the American consul general in Jerusalem, was killed on 22 May by a sniper while trying to arrange a truce. The Cardiff Giant was buried this week.

Because Valerie Bettis is the breakout star of Beatrice Lille's Tiger Lily

Newsweek loved Big City, about a trio of bachelors who find an abandoned baby, and then are told by a judge that the first to marry will adopt the baby. Danny Thomas, George Murphy and Robert Preston are off to the races (one is Protestant, another Catholic, the third Jewish, just to show the melting pot in action). Newsweek liked Betty Garrett in her first screen appearance and that Lotte Lehman disproved the idea that opera singers can't act. Berlin Express is a thriller featuring a Russian, American and Briton fighting Nazis or something. Melody Time shows that Disney is losing its touch.

Books has a review of the papers of General Stilwell that suggest he was perhaps not the diplomat America needed in Nanking. Van Meter Ames has a biography of Andre Gide out that is very important for those who know who Andre Gide is. That is, I'm recovering from a clout on the head after suggesting that no-one cares. I still don't, but I won't --Ow! The annual ABA convention was the latest to hear about red ink, and from department stores that want a more generous return policy.


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