See Inside March 2011

150 Years Ago: Drudgery of the Needle

Innovation and discovery as chronicled in past issues of Scientific American

Fun with Sparks
“In some of the furnace-heated houses of this city, the air is so dry that it is a common amusement of the children to light the gas by a spark of electricity from their fingers. By rubbing the feet along the carpet the body becomes so charged with the electric fluid, that, on approaching the finger to the gas-burner, a spark is drawn forth sufficient to light the gas.”

This article was originally published with the title "50, 100 & 150 Years Ago."

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