Saturday, March 17, 2012


THE WORK OF W. T. FOSTER,LONG-RANGE WEATHER FORECASTERAs reported in articles by and about him

+ + +[From an article quoting Foster:] "W. T. Foster, the weather prophet ofBurlington, Iowa, predicts severe storms from now until the 28th of this month. He bases his calculations on the fact that the earth and Mercury will pass the sun'sequator and Venus its equinoctial between the 18th and 28th."


+ + +"By the records of the signal service I can prove to any well-informed fair-minded person that the course, location and force of the storm waves, and the prominence or force of the earthquakes, auroras, and sun spots are governed by the positions of the earth, moon, sun and planets, and I expect to have an opportunity of laying these facts before the weather bureau of the United States. Not, however, while that bureau is under the control of the war department, but soon after it has passed to the agricultural bureau where it properly belongs. Meantime I hope that readers of my letters will investigate. For $1 the navy department will send you the nautical almanac, which gives all the necessary information of the planets, and by application to the weather bureau at Washington you can obtain the daily weather maps free.


They furnish the most reliable and easily understood record of what the weather hasbeen."The easiest method of investigating my theories is to take the dates on which the moon crosses the earth's equator which occurs about every fourteen days. You will find that the greatest storms occur very close to these dates."


+ + +"The causes that will greatly increase the force of the storms of this storm periodare: Venus crosses the sun's equator on the 16th, the moon crosses the earth's equatoron the 19th, and Mercury crosses the sun's equator at its greatest disturbing point on


The Evening Bulletin of Maysville, KY, June 23, 1888, p. 3 via

For sources of historical and contemporary weather data, see Yahoo membership is required at Gannstudygroup).
13The Fort Worth [TX] Weekly Gazette, Aug. 7, 1890, p. 8.

the 20th. These three disturbances occurring within four days will act as does theattenuating current of the electro-dynamo machines, and will cause great activity inthe earth's electric currents. This will be the tornado period of August. ..."During these disturbances the moon will pass south of the earth's equator. Thishas the effect of pulling the flow tide of the earth's atmosphere from the Northern tothe Southern hemisphere, with cooler weather in the Northern. When the earth'satmosphere is pulled south it leaves a less dense atmosphere north and permits thecold of outer space to more readily penetrate the earth."


+ + +"I have never known Venus to pass its equinoctial, at 30 deg. heliocentriclongitude, that it did not cause great disturbances, and at its next equinoctial it will bevery close to the earth."Our next storm, about October 9, will be influenced by Mercury passing thesun's equator, and at the same time crossing the earth's equator."


+ + +"Heretofore I promised to give in this letter the dates for one of the greatest storms of the year. I have already stated that the tropical hurricanes would increase in force from the 1st of the month to the 9th, when one of them will be not far from the Gulf of Mexico, but these tropical hurricanes are entirely distinct from the continental storms, and more in an entirely different circuit. The continental storms will be due toleave the Pacific coast about the 5th, cross the Mississippi valley from the 6th to 8th,and reach the Atlantic coast about the 9th. It will be at its greatest force on the Northeast Atlantic coast about the 9th, and will be a very dangerous storm. I would advise all to keep off of the seas about that time. About that time the storms will be very severe all around the earth, and while our set of storms are crossing the Mississippi valley the other three storm waves that belong to this latitude will be about the middle of the North Atlantic, in Eastern Europe and on the North Pacific.The three systems of hurricanes, one on the North Atlantic, one on the North Pacific and one on the Indian ocean, will all show increased activity; each of these systems revolves around the center of the oceans to which they belong."Following the storm of 5th to 9th will be a cold wave the force of which will depend on the location of the tropical hurricane. In the extreme Northwest I expect a blizzard but I cannot say how far south it will go. The cause of these unusual

14The Fort Worth [TX] Weekly Gazette, Aug. 21, 1890, p. 1.15The Fort Worth [TX] Weekly Gazette, Oct. 9, 1890, p. 3.

disturbances are: Venus at its equinoctial on the 8th and the moon crossing the earth'sequator on the 9th. The influence of Venus' equinoctial covers all the first half of the month while the moon's influence covers only three or four days. On the 8th theequator of Venus will be toward the sun, increasing the Sun's electrical forces, whichin turn causes an electrical agitation throughout the solar system. This does not change the time or direction of the storms, only increasing their force. This Venus ion disturbance would develop sun spots were Jupiter at his disturbing point, but as he isnot there will be but few sun spots. The earth was passing the equator of Venus fromthe 20th to 25th, causing the great storms of that period."As before stated November will be noted for its great storms. Mercury will passits greatest disturbing point on the 15th, and will effect the storm immediately before and after that date. But the influence of Mercury and and Venus on the weather differ very much, the former having a tendency to murky, rainy weather, while the latter is more violent and frequently brings the tornado, the hurricane and the blizzard. Wemay not expect settled weather again till after the 25th. It must be remembered,however, that the storms do not cover the whole continent, but when they cross the southern part cool, fair weather is the rule for the north, and when they cross the north part warm, fair weather occurs in the south. Look out for bad weather in the valley between the Alleghany and Rocky mountains from November 6th to 9th, a dangerous storm on the Atlantic coast, a great hurricane on the Gulf of Mexico and a blizzard in the Northwest."


+ + +"Venus' equinoctial on the 8th will continue to increase the force of the storms till about the 18th, and mercury crossing the sun's equator on the 15th will add to the force of the storms from about the 13th to the 22d. The center of this storm wave will probably pass through the border Southern states and then move toward the Northeast for the reason that the moon will have gone south of the earth's equator,although Venus being very close to the earth tends to drive the storms into northern latitudes. Venus and Mercury being south of the earth's equator have a tendency to pull the storms south."


+ + +

16The Fort Worth [TX] Daily Gazette, Nov. 4, 1890, p. 7.17The Fort Worth [TX] Weekly Gazette, Nov. 13, 1890, p. 2.
"ATMOSPHERIC CONDITIONS."We are now approaching the winding up periods of the great November storms. All round the earth great and destructive storms, hurricanes and blizzards have occurred and in them Venus has again proved the power of her equinoctial electric currents in bringing fierce storms; the moon has again demonstrated its electric power when crossing the earth's equator, and now it is Mercury's time to againtell what it can do in disturbing the planetary family by crossing the sun's equator,which occurred on the 15th. The effect was felt to some extent, in the last storm, but its principal effect is felt in the evening up process after it has disturbed the electricequilibrium by crossing the sun's equator. Its effects are seen principally in theincrease of rains, snows, sleets and foggy, murky weather."THE NEXT STORM WAVE"will be due to leave the Pacific coast about the 16th, cross the great valley from 17th to 19th and reach the Atlantic coast about the 20th. It will become a furious storm about the 22nd when it will be on the middle of the north Atlantic and at the same time another approaching storm will be very severe on the Pacific coast; a third one will bein central Asia and a fourth in central Europe. Our storm will pass through theSouthern States causing cold weather north of the storm and warm weather south of it. A very considerable amount of snow and rain may be expected from this storm wave."I hope that readers of my letters will study the laws of storms which they will find in my letters for without this much of the benefits to be derived from my forecasts will be lost. Remember that all storm waves are whirlwinds, turning from right byway of the front to the left; the center of the storm rises and the wind blows toward it."A YEAR OF DISASTROUS STORMS."I believe that 1892 will be a year of the most disastrous storms experienced inrecent times. I do not know of a time in the past when the disturbing forces were so great as they promise to be in 1892. From 1880 to 1884 the disturbing elements were quite active on account of Uranus being at its equinoctial, where the earth is in March,but in 1892 two of the greatest planets in the solar system will pass their equinoctials about the same time. In January 1892 Jupiter will be at his equinoctial and also at perihelion, or about 42,000,000 miles nearer the earth than when he passed his equinoctial in 1886. The equator of Jupiter will be toward the sun and his greatest electrical force will be felt throughout the earth's orbit for six months before and after that date. In August 1892 Saturn will pass its equinoctial, where the earth is in March,
and its full electrical force will be felt by the sun and earth for twelve months beforeand after that date. At that time the edge of Saturn's rings will be toward the earth —the rings coincide with Saturn's equator — and cannot then be seen except through powerful telescopes. These two great planets — Jupiter is 1300 times larger than theearth, while Saturn is nearly as large — will be on opposite sides of the sun, with their equators toward the sun and toward each other. The electricity that is thrown off over the equator of an electro-dynamo machine will knock over small objects a hundred feel away, and from that one may imagine what a powerful influence our earth will encounter when it comes between the equator of two such electro-dynamos as Jupiter and Saturn, which revolve on their axes so rapidly as to cause their equators to move thousands of times more rapidly than do the equators of our most powerful electro-dynamos."WEATHER AND SCIENCE NOTES."In a letter from a friend in New York City it is suggested that: 'Electricity is intensified vibration. Given an adequate conductor there is no loss or expenditure intransit, for it is not matter, not a fluid, but motion. This inconceivably intense vibratory motion produces effects so unique as to be confounded with cause. In one condition it is called heat, but heat is only an effect of the propulsion of this intense vibration against the air, producing friction of its atoms, hence the arc light and theforked lightning. Magnetism is only another effect, produced by the proximity of thetwo opposite vibratory motions. Vibrations can have only two general motions, hence the intenser motion of the two is called the positive and draws the negative to itself.Heat, light, life, magnetism, chemical affinities, force, gravitation, etc., are all effects ofthis vibratory motion called electricity, which is the infinite, universal cause.'"This theory of electricity is similar but not the same as that to which I hold. Thes cientific world fail to find a beginning for creation and refuse to recognize more than three forms of matter. I believe that there are at least five forms of matter beginning atether of outer space, condensations of which constitute electricity which condenses to form the gases, liquids and solids. In proof of this, all matter is convertible into electricity. To generate electricity we decompose zinc which goes out through the copper wire. As the zinc goes back into electricity it must continue to be matter and itis not unreasonable to believe that the zinc was originally composed of electricity.Creation is now in progress as much as it ever was. Condensations of electricity form the atom and build it into a molecule, meteor, comet, moon, planet and sun, their only difference being in their size, solidity and their electric forces. All these bodies may grow to be sure."


18The Deseret Weekly, Nov. 22, 1890, p. 619.
+ + +[In an article mentioning Foster:] "Besides his [weather] predictions, Mr. Fostersends us some interesting notes on sanitary and scientific subjects. Here, for example,is a nut for the bacteriologists to crack: —"[']We are now in the midst of the hog cholera period and the prevalence of contagious diseases among men and the lower animals. Contagious diseases among children are reported as epidemic in many places. I have a theory as to the cause, and I believe that statistics of contagions and epidemic diseases will prove the correctness of the theory."[']The cause is to be found in the aphelion and perihelion of the planets,especially of Jupiter. This planet is 44,000,000 of miles nearer the sun and earth at perihelion than at aphelion. When it is nearest the sun and earth their atmospheres expand and when farthest from the earth they contract. In the one instance the waters and heavy gases of the earth are evaporated and lifted into the atmosphere and in the other they are condensed and precipitated. These great changes in our earth and atmosphere affect the health of man and beast."


+ + +"WEATHER AND SCIENCE NOTES"In studying meteorology or any of the physical sciences one of the most important items is the nature of attraction. It is usually spoken of as a pull, but this isan impossibility. It must be a push. To illustrate: The earth and all the planets have greater diameters through their equators than through their poles. Why? Astronomers say that while the earth was a heated and melted mass its rapid revolution on its axis caused it to elongate in the direction of its equator. But I deny that it was ever a melted mass any more than we now see in the volcanoes. Bodies of electricity are to solid matter like bodies of water expelling the lighter while the heavier sinks into it. The earth throws off a body of electricity over its equator and solid bodies in space are pushed into that electrical body, and seeking its center are conveyed to near the earth'sequator. This is one cause of the earth's greater growth at its equator while vegetable growth furnishes another. All the planets were originally comets and were pushed from space toward the sun's electric center, its equator. But their momentum caused them to pass beyond the sun's equator, and then the resistance of matter pushed them back toward the sun's electric belt again, and so they continue to vibrate each time passing a little less distance beyond the center of the sun's electric belt. The

19The Evening Telegram of New York, Dec. 16, 1890, p. 4.
earth now only goes seven degrees north and south of the sun's equator and the moononly five degrees with and south of the earth's equator. Placing an electric body onone side of matter takes or drives away the resistance or pressure of the universalmatter of space, and the resistance on the other side pushes the matter into the centerof the electrical body. Organized bodies like meteors, comets, moons and planets haveno weight toward any other body as their matter presses equally toward their owncenters. Another fact has much to do with these questions. Whenever matter — Iregard electricity as matter — moves in one direction other matter moves in theopposite direction. All physical scientists agree that electricity passes from sun andplanets over their equators and returns to them at their poles, and electricity passingfrom the earth at its equator would require that other matter come to it at the equatorand pass from it at the poles, so my theory does not disagree with generally acceptedscientific principles. But when two organized bodies come near each other theirelectric fields repel each other and therefore the planets, moons, suns and cometscannot fall into each other. This explains the tides. Scientists say that the moon'sattraction pulls the waters of the ocean up, causing a tidal wave. I do not believeanything of the kind. The moon's electric field with its accompanying etheric matterpasses over the ocean, depressing it as a great weight making a trough in the ocean,and after it passes on the ocean wave comes in to fill the trough and level the sea. Thefact that the flood-tide is 2000 miles behind the moon is good evidence for this theory.The tides then are caused by a push instead of a pull. The planets sink into the sun'setheric atmosphere as a log or stone sinks into water; the heavier the planet the nearerto the sun it sinks. The age of the planets has nothing to do with their position, near orfar from the sun. The circulation of electricity through them causes them to revolve ontheir axes, while the sun's etheric atmosphere revolving with it causes them to revolvearound the sun."


+ + +"A concise statement of my weather theories is this: North of latitude 30 the storm waves move entirely around the earth from west to east and never die or become disorganized. I know the periods of four of these storm waves and can givethe dates approximately on which they will pass any meridian all around the earth.These storm waves sometimes become great storms and at other times they becomealmost extinct, but they continue to move eastward, sometimes faster, sometimes slower, but averaging about twenty-five miles an hour. These four storm waves increase and decrease in force at the same time, although they are, on an average,about 3400 miles apart, and the variation in their force is caused by the electrical influence of the sun, moon and planets. Those bodies are electro-dynamos and throwan electric influence over their equators as do all electro-dynamo machines, and when

20The Fort Worth [TX] Weekly Gazette, Dec. 25, 1890, p. 1.
one of these bodies pass the plane of the equator of another and consequently throughits electric belt every body of the solar system is electrically disturbed thereby becausethey are all electrically connected. The disturbance increases the force of the storms onthe earth, sun and other planets at the same time, as the moving force in these stormwaves is electricity, which comes from the electric currents of the body to which theybelong. Perihelion of the planets and perigee of the moon expands the earth'satmosphere; aphelion of the planets and apogee of the moon have opposite influence.From these influences occur all weather changes, auroras, sun spots, tornadoes,earthquakes and other unusual effects in the earth, atmosphere and sun. Earthquakesare caused by subterranean thunder just as it occurs among the clouds. The earth, sunand planets are solid bodies and have slowly grown from atoms, and electricity is thebuilder."


+ + +"This period of great disturbances will begin during the first part of May, while Mars will be passing its equinoctial, Mercury passing the sun's equator and the moon passing the earth's equator; but while these storms will be very severe, they will not compare with those that will occur later in the year and during the first part of 1892.This will also be a period of great earthquakes in countries where they are common,and volcanoes will become more common and increase in activity."The principal causes of these disturbances will be the equinoxes of Saturn and Jupiter. These great planets throw an electric influence into space over their equators,and this electric influence of Saturn will strike Mars in May, while it is passing itsequinoctial, thereby extending its electric influence to the sun. The electric equator of Saturn will affect Venus, the earth and Mercury in succession, and will directly affect the sun in October, while on the opposite side of the sun the great planet Jupiter will be approaching its equinoctial in a similar manner, reaching that point early in January."


+ + +"The storms of April will all be severe both from minor causes and the effects ofthe powerful electric currents from the equators of Jupiter and Saturn, which willbegin to have a light influence on the earth's electric currents. Mercury will pass thesun's equator on April 2, and with the continued influence of Venus, which will have passed the sun's equator March 28, will materially increase the force of this first April storm, so that it will affect most parts of the United States. These storm waves cause all the changes of the weather, including the winds and their changes, the cool weather

21The Fort Worth [TX] Daily Gazette, Dec. 27, 1890, p. 8.22The Wheeling [WV] Register, Feb. 8, 1891.
and cold waves, the warm days, frosts, rain, hail, snow, sleet, and when their trackscontinue far to the north great drouths result. I cannot explain all these effects of thestorm waves in every letter, and to secure the full benefits of these forecasts the readermust study my science notes and discussion on the beginnings of creation and thephysical forces. A scrap book of these articles would be convenient for reference."


+ + +"THE MOON'S INFLUENCES"This satellite has more influence on the weather than any other body except thesun, but the masses have been led into an error by supposing that the changes of themoon cause changes in the weather. When the moon and sun are on the same side ofthe earth the electrical influences are increased in that direction, but this does notincrease the force of the storms but merely affects their location. There is also a beliefamong the hunters, frontiersmen and sailors that when the moon hangs on its pointmuch rain or snow will occur during that moon. The North American Indians alsofollow this sign and believe it to be a propitious sign for hunting. Damp weather andsnow are favorable to the hunter for in dry weather the leaves make too much noisefor success and snow is favorable for tracking game. When the moon hangs on itspoint the hunter says he cannot hang his powder horn on its point and then is the timeto hunt and when the moon at new lies on its back it indicates that the hunter canhang his shot pouch on its point and he would better not waste his time at hunting. Ihave no use for anything that has superstition for its base, but these signs that have somuch influence with certain classes of people throughout the world should not be castaside without investigation. Many of those common beliefs have some real foundation and thousands of years of experience on the part of those who are compelled to bemuch out of doors has taught them that with certain positions of the planets come certain changes of the weather. Why this is so they know not; all they know is the coincidence. I have investigated these crude signs and have found real causes at the bottom of some of them. The moon lies on its back when it runs north and hangs on its point when it runs south. As the moon causes tides in the ocean it must also cause tides in the atmosphere, and as it moves from about 24 degrees north of the earth'satmosphere, to the same distance south and the reverse, passing over about 3300 milesof the earth's surface in about fourteen days, or about nine miles north or south and1000 miles east in twenty-four hours the change necessarily affects the atmosphereand the weather by pulling the storms north or south."The changes of the moon occur a little more than six days apart and the regular storm waves pass over this latitude in little less than six days apart, so that if a storm

23The Rocky Mountain News of Denver, Colorado, March 22, 1891.
wave is due about the change of the moon the next storm wave will be due very near the next change of the moon, and these coincidences will occur for several weeks. This has led to the belief that it is the changes of the moon that causes the storm waves. But the coincidences will not continue long and I see no reason why changes of the moon should cause a change in the weather. If the moon crosses the earth's equator a little before a storm wave is due it will cross the earth's equator in two weeks near when a storm wave is due, and if the changes of the moon should occur at the same time it would lead to the belief that it is the changes of the moon that causes these storms of greatest force. The electrical theory of weather changes requires that we follow thelaws of electricity and whatever is not in accord with these laws must be rejected, andif these electrical laws will not explain all meteorological phenomena, then the theorymust be rejected as a failure."The moon is 225,719 miles from the earth at perigee and 251,947 miles atapogee, making a change of 26,228 miles about every fourteen days. This change makes a great difference in the tides and must necessarily make a difference in its effect on the atmosphere. Professor Proctor


admitted that it had been fairly proven that more earthquakes occur when the moon is close to the earth because of its greater influence on the tides and if this be true it must also have greater influence on theatmosphere at the same time. "


+ + +"Forty years ago the great Faraday said: 'When we remember that the earth itself is a magnet, pervaded in every part by this mighty power, universal and strong asgranite itself, we cannot doubt that it is exerting an appointed and essential influenceon every particle of matter and in every place wherein it is present. What its great purpose is seems to be looming up in the distance before us; the clouds which obscure our mental sight are daily thinning and I can not doubt that a glorious discovery innatural knowledge is awaiting our age.'"

necessary for each person to have copies of my published letters. To understand planetary meteorology the astronomy of the solar system must be understood. The astronomy taught in our schools takes the ecliptic, or the earth's orbit, as the basisfrom which to calculate and this is like beginning the study of arithmetic in decimal fractions. I take the sun's equator as the base from which to calculate, and by this means the solar system and the relations of the planets to each other are much more easily understood. Astronomy as taught in our schools is adapted to surveying andnavigation, but not to planetary meteorology. To individuals, clubs and societies thatdesire to study or discuss planetary meteorology I will furnish diagrams once a weekand give special instructions which, with the letters published in this paper, will enable anyone to calculate the future of the weather from the standpoint of planetary meteorology. Parties interested in this matter will please correspond with me. This will give to literary and scientific societies a new feature for their fall and wintermeetings, and the expense will be so small that individuals may well afford to engagein the study alone."WEATHER AND SCIENCE NOTES."Our cold winters are caused by the eastward oscillations of the North Atlantic permanent high barometer, therefore when we have cold winters in the Mississippivalley the winters are warm in Europe. This North Atlantic high barometer controlsthe routes of our storm centers, and the tropical hurricanes and these control the cold waves. When that high barometer swings eastward our storm centers take southern routes, causing our cold winters, and at the same time that high barometer covers Southern Europe, causing their storm centers to take northern routes, and warm winters ensue. To a less extent this effects the Northeastern states and Canada in asimilar manner, and this will cause their coming winter to be less severe than will be experience in the Mississippi valley. A more complete knowledge of the oscillations of the North Atlantic permanent high barometer is indispensable to correct forecasts ofthe weather on this continent and Europe, and the weather bureaus of the United States and Europe should give this matter careful attention. If we had a correct record of the weather of the Bermudas, the Azores, the West Indies and the Windward islands and a ship signal station between the Bermudas and the Azores we would be in possession of the means by which we could calculate the periods of hurricanes andgive warning of their approach. In order to forecast cold waves the weather bureau is looking toward the Northwest, where the cause of these cold waves is to be found inthe opposite direction. Cold waves and hurricanes are matters of great importance tothe United States and should have more practical investigation by the weather bureau.Such investigations are too expensive for independent meteorologists to undertake. In this matter of the oscillations of the North Atlantic high barometer, Europe is as muchinterested as is North America, and the expense should be shared by both. A correct foreknowledge of cold and warm winters, early springs, later and early frosts on both

+ + +"CLASSES IN METEOROLOGY."I will give special instructions in meteorology to all persons who are subscribers to this paper in which my weekly letters are regularly published. It will be

24Richard Anthony Proctor.25Fort Worth [TX} Gazette, May 21, 1891, p. 1.


Fort Worth [TX] Gazette, June 15, 1891, p. 3. Quoted in

New Theories of the Great Physical Forces

by Henry Raymond Rogers, p. 92 Rogers iscited herein in an article later this year by Foster.
continents and our tropical hurricanes depends on a better knowledge of this NorthAtlancic [sic] permanent high barometer. In other respects the weather record is good,but in this it is seriously deficient."


+ + +"PLANETARY METEOROLOGY."It is a species of supreme arrogance for 'orthodox' scientists to pretend that theyhave investigated planetary meteorology, for not one of them understands it. A number of them have declared that there is nothing in the claim that planets affect the weather, because after long and careful observations they find the changes of themoon have no influence on the weather. Of course not. Planetary meteorology makes no such claims, and therefore the tests they have made have no bearing. Others againdeclare that they have carefully examined the equinoctial theory, and find it does nothold good. The difficulty with them is that they do not understand the equinoctial theory. It is not claimed that the equinoctial theory demands a storm everywhere onthe 21st of March and September. It is not even claimed that these equinoxes originatestorms, but that they influence them. We do not look for a storm on the 21st of March,but whenever the regular storm wave is due near that date we expect the equinox toincrease its force. In their investigations these 'orthodox' scientists have taken the 21stof March and September as the storm days, and as they find that the equinoctial storms do not uniformly occur on those days they conclude there is nothing in the equinox theory. The trouble is not with the equinoxes, but with the ignorance of those'orthodox' scientists, who never make a discovery and know nothing outside of the theories announced hundreds of years ago when our predecessors were just emerging from the dark ages. So far as I know there is none but myself who understands thesystem of planetary meteorology I use as the basis of my calculations, and therefore noone is competent to investigate it. I am the discoverer, not of all the facts, but ofimportant facts which make planetary meteorology a harmonious whole. It is very complicated, however, and if I make mistakes it is not the fault of the system, but because of errors in my calculation. I have no secrets regarding my theory, but no onecan expect to understand it in a day. The subject is equal in extent to that of law orpolitics or theology. Within a year the planets cause about 160 electrical disturbances,and to group these so as to know what storm waves will be affected and to whatextend is no small matter, and those scientists who have never given a day's study to the subject are presumptuous when they claim to have investigated that of which they are supremely ignorant."It is my design to give as full information as I can on this subject through my

27The Fort Worth [TX] Gazette, July 30, 1891, p. 1.
published letters, which go regularly to forty daily papers and a number of weeklies,besides being copied into a large number of weeklies, but some of the dailies andmany weeklies are not prepared to publish diagrams and illustrations which arenecessary to a complete understanding of the subject. As before stated, subscribers tothe paper can obtain these diagrams and illustrations by corresponding with me. I amprepared to give through these public letters during the fall and winter months morecomplete information as to planetary meteorology and will discuss electricity as thecause of motion. One kind of electricity, the positive being the large and the negativethe small quantity, electricity the cause of magnetism, magnetism and attractionidentical, every atom of matter endowed with its own power of motion — that poweris electricity as manifest in the natural magnet. Each planet revolves on its axis becauseof its own inherent forces and around the sun because of the movements in thatdirection of the elements that surround the sun. Sun and planets are not, never were,molten matter, but radiate electricity, not heat. Heat and light do not penetrate space,but originate and are confined to the atmosphere of the sun and planets. The electricenvelope of each planet determines its orbit and distance from its primary. Theattraction of gravitation is a push. The planets float. The centripetal and centrifugaltheories are errors. The calculated revolution on their axis of most of the planets areerrors because of their clouded envelopes. Sun spots are similar to our earth stormsand are from the same causes. Our storm waves move entirely around the earth andtheir forces are controlled by planetary positions. Tropical hurricanes cause our coldwaves."


+ + +"I have now completed all arrangements for giving lessons in meteorology by mail. These lessons will be given to individuals or clubs at $2.50 for thirteen lessons. In a club of five this will cost the members only 50 cents each. No person must be admitted into these clubs who is not a subscriber to this paper, and each must keep a file of my published weekly letters. Each lesson will consist of a weather map, two astronomical illustrations and a letter of special instructions. I have a good number of subscribers to begin with and members can begin the studies at any time in the future."My long-range weather forecast has stood the test for a number of years and many persons, especially those interested in agriculture, fruit-raising, coal mines, ice-houses, etc., are in favor of adding this feature to the national weather bureau. I would not desire to make the officers of the national weather bureau responsible for my theories of weather changes, because they know nothing about the principles upon which my forecasts are based, and for the same reason I would not accept any position in the weather bureau that would prevent me from freely presenting my views. I am

28The Fort Worth [TX] Gazette, Aug. 13, 1891, p. 1.
not begging the people of the United States for government support, and I will enter into no logrolling scheme for that purpose. My work is giving me a good support, and I am not dissatisfied with my efforts and opportunities. But there would be some advantages to the public and toward perfecting a system of long-range weather forecasts in establishing a bureau of agricultural meteorology."I estimate that such a bureau can be put into operation at an expense of $15,000annually. One man cannot cover all the ground and give to the subject that careful study necessary to perfect the system and make it of practical utility to all interests.There are three natural divisions of labor in these long-range forecasts, and each of these divisions should have a man at its head peculiarly fitted for the work. One of these departments includes the periodical storm waves that cross the continents, thechanges of weather accompanying them, and the cool waves, hot waves and frosts.Another department would include rainfall and drouths and a third department would give special attention to plant life, making estimates of the effects that coming weather will have on the growing crops of the world. If we could know the future ofthe weather farmers would better know what kind of crops to plant."In order to make this bureau of agricultural meteorology accountable directly to the people and prevent it from becoming a tool in the hands of cereal speculators Ipropose that its chief be elected biennially by the lower house of congress and that the chief appoint his clerk and two assistants. Should such a bureau be established I would probably be a candidate for the first place and Prof. Blake


of Topeka, Kan.,would be my choice for the department of rainfall and drouth. He is a remarkably well-informed man on these subjects, besides being a man of very considerable ability in other matters. My choice for the department of plant life would be Prof. Mansill


of Rock Island, Ill. He is well-informed in astronomy, meteorology, geology and chemistry, and would be a valuable man in that work."This bureau would use the information gathered by the present weatherbureau, and as it would not make daily weather predictions, there would be no conflict between it and the weather bureau officials. Let the latter pursue their work.At most there could only be a rivalry between the two systems and the public would

29C. C. Blake of Topeka, Kansas, was described in 1889 as "the most eminent weather prophet of the'planetary' school" ("False Weather Prophets," Dec. 26, 1889 Daily Inter-Ocean of Chicago IL, p. 6). In publicity material that year, Blake wrote: "For more than thirty years I have been at work calculating theweather by means of Astronomical Mathematics. My system is purely astronomical, and I have nothing to dowith astrology; I deal only with the rigid laws of cause and effect. For the last fifteen years I have published the result of my calculations in the form of weather predictions and the verification has been over 90 per cent.till this year. As the year is only half out, I do not know what it will be this season — probably not less than 80 per cent." The Bridgeton [NJ] Evening News, Sept. 9, 1889. A decade earlier a reviewer of Blake's almanac noted: "For the past two years his predictions have been remarkably correct, and have become a necessity in every family." The Cleveland (OH) Plain Dealer, Feb. 13, 1879, p. 2. 30Richard Mansill of Rock Island, Illinois. See Appendix I herein for his theory

soon determine which can furnish the most valuable weather forecasts.


+ + +"ELECTRICITY."All Physical Phenomena DirectlyTraceable to this Energy."Twenty-three hundred years ago Aristotle declared there is but one singleuniversal force, and that declaration entitles him to be called the father of science. Butthe dark ages came and crushed that truth to earth to rise again in the last years of the19th century. When the clouds of the dark ages began to clear away a great minddeclared a half truth in the nebular theory of creation, which for more than a centuryhas been taken as a basis of astronomy, geology and meteorology. This nebular theory like the Ptolemaic theory of astronomy, is requiring of our astronomers, geologists and meteorologists constant inventions to make the nebular hypothesis and the consequent heat theory of force to hold together, and these invented theories so numerous that the nebular theory is tottering to its fall. For the salvation of science it is just as necessary to return to the unity of force, as announced by Aristotle, as it was to Christianity that Paul should establish the unity of spiritual forcein the truth of one God. The nebular theory stands to scientific truth in about the same relation that the theory of a million gods did to true religion in the days of Christ. Ifwe go back to the truth of one universal force, we do not only lift science from themire, but we do for the scientific world that which the doctrine of one God did for thereligious world."Prof. Wm. H. Preece, London's leading electrician, declares that 'all physical phenomena, without a single exception, may be traced to the mere transformation of electrical energy.' That is a reassertion of the great Aristotelian truth, and is in harmony with my views as to the physical forces. There is but one physical force, and that force is electricity, or matter in motion. Its origin is found in the condensation of the diffused matter of space."As this ether of space condenses into the solid bodies as the meteors, comets,moons, planets, suns and the clusters of stars, it is, by these condensations, caused to converge toward these common centers in straight lines, and after moving through them and depositing its grosser materials, radiates to other bodies gathering more matter in space. This movement of that which has been called the ether of space constitutes all there is of electricity and of force, and is the basis of my meteorological

31The Dallas [TX] Morning News, Sept. 13, 1891, p. 2.

theories. Electricity is the universal force, is the cause of light, heat, magnetism,attraction, repulsion, gravitation, earthquakes, the high and low barometers, heat inthe earth, volcanoes and is the life principle of the vegetable and animal kingdoms. Itmoves the atmosphere lifts the moisture and is the force of the tornado. Everyheavenly body, from the meteors to the suns, have grown from atoms bycondensations. Suns and planets are caused to revolve on their axes by the electricalforce we see in the natural magnet and planets and satellites revolve around theirprimaries because of the elements that surround and revolve with the latter. The sun isnot and the earth never was a hot body; neither light nor heat comes from the sun, butare effects of electrical radiations; the planets, satellites and asteroids entered our solarsystem as comets and each will continue to grow by accumulations from the ether ofspace electricity till it becomes a sun and the center of a solar system. The earth'sdiameter at its equators is greater than at its poles because of vegetable and coralgrowths. Coal is not of vegetable origin. The moon is not a dead world."All storms are whirlwinds and north of latitude 30 they move entirely aroundthe earth, never die, and they increase and decrease in force by reason of the positionof the sun, moon and planets. The high and low barometers constitute electric pairsand the currents of electricity that rise in the low come down in the high formingelectric circuits. Cold waves, early fall and late spring frosts are caused by tropicalhurricanes. Early springs, late falls, cold and warm winters, drouth, rain bolts,excessive heat, extreme cold, great storm periods and the location of storms aregoverned by the position of the planets."


+ + +"STUDY ELECTRICITY."Of all the subjects now attracting general attention none are of more importance than electricity, and there is certainly a very great demand for information on that subject. More attention should be given this subject in our institutions of learning, especially in the high school, seminaries, colleges and universities."Electricity is destined to supersede the use of steam as a motive power, gas for light and wood and coal for fuel, and only one or two more such men as Edison are necessary in order to usher in these important events much earlier than the masses will be prepared for them."The time is probably not far away when our railroads will be operated by electricity instead of steam, and this change alone will require a vast amount of

32The Evening Bulletin of Maysville, KY, Oct. 1, 1891, p. 2 via

education. In all affairs of the world young men must be prepared to take the places ofthe older ones, and railroad men, especially train crews, of the near future, must understand electricity. They must possess a vast amount more information than do theaverage graduates of our higher schools on this subject."To a great extent our common schools are failures compared with what theymight be, because they take up too much time in efforts to give each pupil a general instead of a special education. On an average it requires ten school years for a pupil to graduate in our public schools, and one-fifth of that time is used up in the study of geography. Studying the details of the geography of Asiatic Russia and many other countries is useful to very few, and in a similar manner much useless time is spent onother studies that might with more profit, be given to the study of electricity and othernecessary studies, especially by those who are liable to be called on to work with electricity."Electricity is certainly the life principle of the animal and vegetable kingdoms,the motive power that sends the life-blood through the arteries and veins, the sap tothe vegetable cells, and when these ideas fully dawn upon the slowly-progressivemind of the world of man, a greater demand for knowledge on the subject of electricity than has ever been dreamed of will spring up."Add to all this the fact that electricity is the force that causes all weather changes and that this force constitutes the only true basis for the science of meteorology and the argument is complete that no time should be lost in establishing electricity as one of the principal studies in our schools."At this time it may be considered premature to surmise as to the ultimate source of generated electricity when we have passed the rapids of discovery through which we are now going, but I will venture a few suggestions. I believe that all space is filled with matter, either electric or condensed. We find least electricity where wefind most condensed matter, and most electricity where we find least condensed matter. The higher we go into the atmosphere the lighter is the matter composing it,and the greater are the quantity and tension of electricity, and when we go to sea level we find this order is reversed."This leads up to the idea I desire to express as to the future source of electricity for use as a motive power, light, fuel, etc."Its fountain head being above or outside our atmosphere, or the lower and denser portions of it, we must tap that great fountain and bring our electricity from above.

"This idea is not inconsistent with the known laws of electricity. All scientists hold that space is positive and the earth negative, or in more easily understood terms,the large quantity is above and the smaller quantity in the earth. Benjamin Franklin brought down the electricity from above on the string of a kite, showing that it moves from the atmosphere above to the earth below. All electricians say that the higher strata of clouds are positive as to the next below them and these in turn are positive asto still lower strata, while the lower clouds are positive as to the earth. All this means that the electricity comes from above, which is not only in accord with the suggestion that we must tap space above us for electricity but is also evidence in support of my other theory that the earth grows by condensations of electricity, those condensations being the origin of electrical force, which is only the attenuated matter of space set inmotion."Edison's theory, so far as it has been made known, is that we must either get electricity from the earth or transmit it from some great water power. I believe that he,or someone soon to take up his work, will find this to be an error, and instead they will look aloft. So far as I know it has not been tested, but when it is I believe a much greater volume and tension of electricity can be generated on top of the highest mountains than at sea-level."If some scheme could be devised by which to draw from the immense quantity of electricity existing in the upper atmosphere, then I have another suggestion tomake. I believe the atmosphere and water, as well as other condensed matter, to be condensations of electricity, and we must discover how to resolve these into their original electricity. I have long believed this to be the principle of the Keely motor,which has not yet been perfected, and if Mr. Keely


fails to solve this mystery with his'atomizer,' as he very significantly calls it, the times will soon furnish another who will take up the work where he left it and discover the secret of resolving water or atmosphere, perhaps both, into electricity."Necessity is often the propagator of discoveries as well as the mother of invention, and of necessity a great discovery in the field of electricity must soon bemade. Great improvements have been made in the appliances for controlling and


John Worrell Keely. For more on the Keely motor, see "The Keely Motor Secret" by C. J. BloomfieldMoore in Lippincott's Monthly Magazine, August 1887, p. 300 ff. the same author's book,

Keely and His Discoveries: Aerial Navigation

by Clara Jessup Bloomfield (1893) Researcher Dale Pond notes at the site just linked that the book is a compilation of past magazine articles with key details edited out. Pond wrote in 2003, "That Keely, [Walter] Russell and [Nikola] Tesla knew basic natural laws and principles that we do not is a given. After nineteen years of investigating their works it is obvious that the one single element they understood one way and we another is the nature, structure and dynamics of vibration and oscillation (or 'wave' as Russell termed it)." .

using electricity, while but little progress has been made for many years in the base ofoperations in generating electricity. As I believe, a wrong theory has preventedprogress. Electricity has been looked upon by all 'orthodox' scientists as onlyincidental, accidental, an effect with no permanent and prominent place in the greateconomy of nature."We must reverse all this and give to this force its true position which is thecause of causes, the one great, original force, while everything else in nature, mindand matter, in all their relations and conditions are only effects. If our electricians oncelearn that electricity is only matter in motion, coming from all points in space, addingits atoms to the gross matter of our earth, they will then understand that everything ismade from condensations of this electric ether and they will set about resolving matterback into electricity for use as fuel, light and power. On this line I firmly believe that agreat discovery will be made within a few years which will revolutionize manyindustries and make a vast demand for those who have knowledge of the practicalworkings of electricity."For years I have believed that the time would come when, by chemical action,water, air and many solids would be exploded as we now explode gunpowder, andthat instead of transforming the matter into gases, as in the case of gunpowder, itwould be resolved into its original atom, electricity, as it existed before beingcondensed. Study electricity."


+ + +"THE PLANET MARS"Astronomers are generally agreed that the two moons of Mars came to that planet within a few years past, and this is a very strong argument in favor of the electrical theory. The nebular theory holds that the earth was a molten mass, andwhen its crust had formed its cooling interior shrank away from this outer crust,which finally broke it, and coming together formed our moon. This idea contains thegist of the whole nebular theory of creation."The electrical theory holds that bodies of mater are growing in all parts of chaotic outer space by accumulations and condensations of electric ether now, as has been the case in all the past, and that these bodies come to our solar system as comets,occasionally one of them being caught by the magnetic influences of our solar system,becoming a planet, a moon or an asteroid. There are about three hundred of these small planets moving around the sun in orbits between Mars and Jupiter, and our

34The Fort Worth [TX] Gazette, Nov. 5, 1891, p. 1.

astronomers believe that the two moons of Mars are identical with these small planets called asteroids, and that they came from the asteroidal belt within ten years past."The moons of Mars are very small, said to be not more than fifty miles in diameter, and are not easily seen except when Mars is at perihelion — nearest point tothe sun — and the earth at the same time between Mars and the sun, and this occurs only once in about nine years. These moons were discovered at the last of these conjunctions, and therefore came to Mars between the last two such conjunctions."Unquestionably Mars received her moons from outer space and not by the breaking up of an outer crust formed by cooling and this is not only evidence, it is positive proof, that the earth received its moon in the same manner. The indisputable facts connected with the moons of Mars destroys the nebular theory, for if these moons came to that planet from outer space then it can not be successfully denied that the earth came to the sun in the same manner: and in these two little moons of our near neighbor we have incontrovertible evidence in favor of the theory that the sun,earth, planets and moons slowly grow in outer space and are caught by our solar system as it moves constantly into new space never before occupied by it."Another evidence is that Jupiter in recent years caught a comet and held it,revolving around it like one of its moons for six months, and finally, when it did breakaway, changing its orbit so that it revolves around the sun in about seven years,instead of twenty-seven as before. This has occurred twice with the same comet and itwill, probably, become the fifth moon of Jupiter."One of the moons of Mars moves around that planet in less time than itrevolves for Mars to revolve on its axis. If this was the case with our moon it wouldrise in the west and set in the east. This appears to refute the theory that the elements surrounding the sun, earth and planets, revolving with them, cause the planets and moons to revolve around their primaries, for these elements move slower than the revolution of the bodies, while this moon of Mars moves faster than the planet revolves, causing that moon to rise in the west and set in the east, relative to thatplanet."But when this moon came to Mars it necessarily moved with the velocity of acomet and its momentum would, for a time, carry it around its primary with great speed. Astronomers say that our moon is losing time, decreasing in velocity, and they fairly prove this by the dates of ancient eclipses, and no doubt this rapidly moving moon of Mars will lose velocity till it is in accord with the elements that revolve around that planet.

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