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The Arthur and Ehzabeth 


on the History of Women 
in America 








i i 






Before and After BiRXfi, and their Effect upon Individual 
Life and Character. 




Upon the Subject of the Mother's Mental Influence, with its Effect upon the Brain 

Structure of her Offspring. How such influences produce Children who are 

Blind, Deaf, Club-Footed, and otherwise malformed; Idiotic^ Epileptic, 

and the Criminal born with criminal tendencies. Teaching how to 

overcome a shock or scare, as well as the quiet, persistent 

Mental Influence exerted by a Mother; also showing the 

good or bad effect on the future of her offspring. 


By C. J. BAYER. 

A book that will pave the way for parents to discuss the subject of the 

reproduction of mankind. It will enable them to talk intelligently 

with their children upon this important topic. Couched in 

simple language that the uncultured can comprehend. 




JONBS & Krobgbr, Publishers, 


V '.■ 


'I am not a cynic, but an observer.' 



This book is dedicated to prospective mothers, who, by the study of 
it, and by adopting the suggestions that will be found in its pages, may 
be relieved from many a heartache, and thus not only benefit themselves, 
but the unborn millions who will be saved from what in many cases is 
worse than death— i. e., deformed brains and bodies. 




CHAPTER I.— A Few Words to Professionals - - - 23 

In which will be found the opinion of well known phyticiant 
upon the subject of Maternal Impressions. 

CHAPTER II.— What are Maternal Impressions - - 29 

A statement of the theory, and an argument which will lead 
the reader to a logical examination of the subject. 

CHAPTER III.— Various Scientific Theories - - - 47 

A superficial examination of the claims made for and against 

CHAPTER lY.— Heredity 63 

In which are many quotations from acknowledged scientists. 

CHAPTER v.— Reversion to Type 65 

With natural selection and evolution. 

CHAPTER VI.— Truth, Looking for it 76 

CHAPTER VII.— The Study of Man 81 

CHAPTER VIII.— The ELEYATibN of Mankind - - - ^g 

How it can be done. 

CHAPTER IX.— The Outcome 96 

What will be the result of our present system of non-edn- 
cation of the coming mothers. 

CHAPTER X.— Education Does not Make the Man - 106 

Showing that a man bom with a brain soil of one kind, 
cannot be taught upon other lines. 

CHAPTER XI.— Faith in Human Progress - - - . 113 

An attempt to show that faith in some unseen force, will not 
do any good if man acts contrary to divine will. 

CHAPTER XII.— Responsibility ..---. lis 

CHAPTER XIII.— Moral Ethics 126 

A continuation of the argument in Chapter XI. 


Part II. is the important part to the coming parents. 

CHAPTER XIV.— The Process of Brain Formation - 135 

A theory as to how a mother, through her mentality, changes 
the brain formation of her child from a normal to an ab- 
normal structure. 


Showing how such malformations are caused, cases which 
illustrate it, also the skeleton of a law which would in time • •" 

elucidate what seems now so mysterious. 

CHAPTER XYI.— The Congenital Deaf and Dumb - - 149 

An interesting subject in which well known writers are 

CHAPTER XVn.— The Tramp Problem - - - . 153 

This subject treated in such a manner as to convince the 
reader, that no other up to date plan will cure the evil. 

CHAPTER XVIII.— Money Making Mania - - . . I6O 
Contains some startling statistics. 

CHAPTER XIX.— Fault Finding and Fretting - - 165 

' Showing the cause of much of the ill temper in humanity. 

CHAPTER XX.— A Study op Varieties in Twins - - - 168 

A difficult problem, and is like much of the so-called science, 
pure guess work. 

CHAPTER XXI.— Infantile Traits 172 

In which the peculiar traits of children in a family are npted. 

CHAPTER XXII.— Christian Character - . - . . 177 

An argument that will set sincere christian worklcrs to 
thinking on a line of which they have never dreamed. 

CHAPTER XXIII.— Licentiousness 188 

Why it is growing, how moral parents produce immoral 
children, and a remedy pointed out. 

CHAPTER XXIV.— Mother's Longings 194 

Most valuable to all prospective parents. 

CHAPTER XXV.— Advice to Prospective Mothers - 202 

All such are advised to read this at once, it will be a blessing 
to them. 

CHAPTER XXVI.— Child Record 213 

Which explains itself. 


CHAPTER XXVIL— Epilepsy ---.-.- 217 

A plausible theory as. to the cause of congenital epilepsy, in- 
troducing anatomical data, interesting to doctors as well 
as all parents. 

CHAPTER XXVIII.— The Control OF Sex - - - - 230 
^^ ^ Which introduces a theory as to the cause of dual characters, 
or what are known as Hermaphrodites. 

CHAPTER XXIX.— A Study of Criminals - - - - 234 

Interestinff- data iition the criminal. 

CHAPTER XXX.— Suicides - - 250 

CHAPTER XXXI.— Conclusion 259 

A short review of the entire subject. Three animal cases 
which pro^se that they are subject to the same influences. 



We are aware that, tinless there is a special reason, the story of a 
man*8 antecedents should never be told in a volnminous manner; when 
it is done in a case like this, it should be only as an explanation, so that 
the reader can pass his judgment, as to the ability of the author to 
instruct upon the line with which he presumes to be conversant, and 
for this purpose we add to this new and enlarged edition, a few lines in 
regard to the author of Maternal Impressions, a Study in Child Life. 
Mr. Bayer was bom in the city of New York, July 23, 1838, of German 
parentage, and came to the West in 1871. His life has been spent as it 
were among business men. He is a man of vigorous intellect, an' untir- 
ing worker, with naturally keen powers of observation; this, combined 
with an intense desire to find the truth, and the ad vantage of a traveler** 
life, has given him a culture on the line of ''the mental influence of a 
mother upon her oflispring," which it would be impossible to attain in 
any other manner. His work contains a fund of original ideas t)iat will 
create a revolution in scientific thought upon tlie cause of the increase 
of crime and immorality. It displays extraordinary powers of analysis. 
He is the first writer who charges the increase of abnormities in man- 
kind to an ignorance of, or a disregard of natural laws, and prove* it 
to all unprejudiced observers. 

Mr. Bayer has devoted a number of years, while on his travels, to 
making personal investigation of hundreds of cases, only a few of 
which are reported in this work. So far as collecting facts are con- 
cerned, he has done what no man sitting in a library, or a physician 
who is limited to a small circle of patients could do; he came in con- 
tact with many who are abnormal; at the same time was enabled to 
interview the mothers. In that he has as a basis practical experience. 

Mr. Bayer had no thought of writing a book when he began the 
study of causation, but as he could find no theory, which was sustained 
by logical proofs, among the many voluminous works of philosophers, 
he was compelled to look in other directions for the cause of human 
varieties. He found that the true source of knowledge was empirical, 
and called on the mothers. As its importance dawned upon him, he 
became enthusiastic upon the subject, and without intending it he 
became an expert. We do not overrate him when we say that he is the 
best living exponent of the subject of Maternal Impressions, with their 
effect upon the character of mankind, and is devoting the remainder of 
his life to the dissemination of the truths of nature which he has dis- 

By request of physicians he is collecting verified cases, each one cer- 
tified to by reputable practitioners, with their address, for a medical 
text book. 


While introducing the first edition of this work it was gratifying to 
hear the favorable expressions of its readers, and the various book 
reviewers* comments in which it was universally commended. The 
adverse criticism from a few was not as to its tone or subject matter, 
but because it placfed the entire responsibility, with the power to change 
or form the character of the offspring, upon the mother. Not in a single 
case were the conclusions disputed; the objections were solely, that 
more blame should be put upon the paternal parent. I find this as 
yet, impossible to do. All that I am able to do, is to modify the deduc- 
tions. In this work I hold that heredity is a minor factor in relation to 
the character of the offspring; that it rests entirely with the mother. 
The modification is, that the father may transmit traits to his progeny, 
which the mother being ignorant of, is liable to reproduce in her chil- 
dren. But the conclusion remains, that the mother is able to change or 
modify those traits if cognizant of them, but to do so she must be edu- 
cated upon the line of maternal impressions. 

This work carried the author out of the field of empiricism into the 
realm of science, and therefore, he has not acquired the art of turning 
beautiful sentences and well rounded phrases. A student should beware 
of classical diction, which pleases the mind of a reader. It may lead one 
to accept as truths, statements that are not founded upon facts. 

The argument sometimes advanced, *'That because some mothers 
who have been scared or severely shocked and do not impart a corre" 
sponding injui-y to their offspring, therefore none do," is fully answered 
and explained in this volume. It is a weak argument and does not 
establish a physiological truth, but it is necessary sometimes to answer 
the weakest arguments, else those who advance them may conclude they 
are unanswerable. 

To one who has studied any special branch, it is especially gratifying 
to find that the deductions and conclusions will admit of wide general- 


In the first edition the author had studied varied phenomena and 
found them all attributable to the same general cause — ^i. e. maternal 
impressions. To the various subjects dealt with in this work, I. desire 
to ad4a few words upon the suicidal mania, which is attributable to 
the same fundamental cause, viz.: The mother's desire to commit suicide 
before the birth of the suicidal victim — she had longed for death rather 
than suffer the pangs of maternity. Since the issue of the first edition 
the author has had a number of cases brought to his knowledge— one 
of them hi particular, where a middle-aged lady said: "When I was 
nine years old I tried to commit suicide, and had continual spells of 
depression; often brooded over the subject, but since my thirtieth year 
I have had no such thoughts; have outgrown them. I was the sixth 
child. My mother said that I was a very unwelcome one, and accounted 
for my moody spells in that way." So that, as has been remarked, 
every case of abnormal mental or physical development is traceable 
to the mother's mental condition previous to the birth of her offspring. 

This edition has been enlarged to satisfy the demand of many; mak- 
ing it more attractive and thus more desirable. In the hope that interest 
will be aroused upon this subject, and that it will be of great benefit to 
mankind, it is submitted to the keen judgment of the thinking portion 
of the public. 



"In ages gone, 'tis said, heaven sent forth the fiat to man: 
Know thyself.^Bnt the command has not yet reached the earth." 

The subject of maternal impression, which is the reproduction of the 
mother's mental condition while she is forming the brain and body of 
her offspring, with its effect upon the mental and physical character of 
her dhild, is a topic which should engage the attention of all those who 
have the well-being of mankind at heart. 

It is a composite question, and includes not only a study of the cause 
of varieties, by which is meant the various peculiar phases of character 
found among the children in every famrly, but it also embraces the 
dependent and the defective classes. The latter includes the imbecile, the 
idiotic, the epileptic, and the criminal who is bom with criminal ten- 
dencies. The congenital blind, the deaf, and the malformed, sometimes- 
miscalled "Freaks of Nature," belong to the defective class, but in the 
classification of the scientist, they are dependent. 

The entire subject of maternal impression, or what is generally 
knows as pre-natal influence, involves elements which transcends the 
whole range of social economics, in its most liberal definition, and de- 
pends upon, or is governed by laws of which the public have very little 

Many persons know the effect of some mysterious process, through 
which a mother produces a genius or a fool, and which no theory of 
heredity, atavism, reversion to type, or evolution can explain. None of 
these theories are able to clear up the mystery, and no other up to date 
idea, except that of maternal impression, can account for or solve the 

How is a prodigy or a monstrosity, as it happens to be, created ? 
By what combination of natural law is a new nature produced? It is 
that process which generates "Sports" in plants, and "Cranks" in 
humanity. Its process is a mystery. Amystery is only alack of knowl- 
edge of natural phenomena, and the conditions which surround man- 


kind. Botanists have studied the production of sports with great care, 
biit in vain. So far as the law of their origin is concerned, it remains as 
obscure as ever. Nature's works are simple when known, but to one 
who does not understand them, they are wonderful; and wonder is the 
result of ignorance. The child wonders at a ghost story, the savage at 
a trinket, the scientist at unexplained phenomena. 

The laws which govern reproduction are looked upon by the average 
man to be as mysterious as those which govern the movements of the 
planets through space, and in addition, are considered a subject which 
pure minds should not think of or discuss, forgetting that it is nature's 
fundamental process of self-preservation, and when studied as it should 
be, that is, freed from the quasi-mystery by which it is enshrouded, 
through ignorance and false modesty, it is as chaste as the study of 
zoology, biology, or any kindred subject. Whenever the reproduction of 
the human race is discussed by the medical profession, or the scientist, 
it is couched in high-sounding terms and technical phrases, accompanied 
by a mass of verbiage which is unintelligible to the general reader, thus 
making it tedious and difficult to understand. In this -yvork the subject 
is simplified, so that the uneducated mind will be able to comprehend it; 
and worded so that young, as well as old, will know what it means, 
without the use of terms which would jar or shock the most sensitive 
minds. Very great care has been taken in that respect. 

It has been the experience of past ages, that any idea which was cal- 
ctdated to overcome long-existing errors, is not well received, and as 
this subject is presumed to enter the domain of the medical profession, it 
is more difficult than any other which embraces the welfare of mankind , 
because the medical practitioner is inclined to deny without explanation. 
The masses endorse the opinion of the doctors, as they are supposed to 
be competent, not only to judge of its merits ; but they are considered 
unbiased. -Many men in that profession become biased, full of precon- 
ceived ideas, and prejudices, from the fact that they have investigated 
man from one stand point only— the physical, through anatomical op- 
tics. If called to prove that the medical profession is biased, it will only 
be necessary to cite for illustration, Harvey and his theory of the circu- 
lation of the blood. He was roundly abused, and it is historical that 
not a prominent physician in the whole of Europe believed in his theory. 
Even now any new idea must be endorsed by some well known name 
before the average medical man will even deign to consider it. 

In Harvey's day the profession held that the arteries were occupied 
by a vital spirit, and most of the physicians believed it. That it was 
generated out of the left side of the heart, from the air and blood of the 
lungs, and they said that Harvey's theory of the circulation of the blood 
through the system was false. Why? Mark the reason: * 'Because it 


was not true.** Not a single argument was brought to prove that jt 
was false. But Harvey's theory followed the/ course of all advanced 
thought— furst it was sneered at as nonsense; then it was said to be dan- 
gerous; and lastly accepted. Whereupon the cry arose, "Why, it is not 
new at all, and was very plain to all men before Harvey was bom." 

The medical profession is not alone in its tenaciousness in regard to 
old theories. When the idea of the earth being a globe, instead of a flat 
surface, was first promulgated, it encountered the opposition of the wise 
men of the age. The most enlightened thinkers in those days were 
frightened, and the church fought it bitterly as being a dangerous doo 
trine, and condemned all who assented to the theory as unbelievers. 

The cry was, "Your science is opposed to our religion!** Those who 
did not believe that the earth was flat like a table, were afraid to express 
themselves. But one of them who had more courage than discretion, 
Peter of Albano, was burned at the stake for the heresy. That was les» 
than six hundred years ago. Bven after Magellan, in 1621, had sailed 
around the earth, the fact that the world was round was not accepted, 
and it was two hundred years after, when the astronomers added incon- 
trovertible proof, before it was acknowledged. Now there is not an 
intelligent school boy but knows, or is taught how to prove that the 
earth is a globe by the sailing of a ship. There is perhaps one exception, 
which is in the case of the Reverend Jasper, who preaches that **De sun 
do move." But whether that colored Virginia preacher teaches the old 
doctrine, i. e. that the earth is flat, we do not know, nor care. 

In many very important matters which are vital to their best inter* 
ests, some men and women abandon reason, ignore the evidence of the 
senses, and do not heed the manifestations which a kind providence has 
placed around them, and which are so plain to those who seek the light. 
There are others mentally too lazy to be skeptical on any subject, or 
they are irrational and incompetent to reason, or unable to comprehend 
the force of others* reasoning. Some are looking for the impossible to 
happen, somewhere or somehow. They argue, "That a man who sees 
snakes in the air is sick, but he who sees angels is supremely blessed." 
The human race has been progressing and acquiring much ; it is to be 
hoped that it will ultimately become rational, draw proper conclusions 
from the true premise, and refuse to accept conjecture for reality. 

It would be advisable at all times to remember Prof. Huxley*s guid- 
ing rule, "There is a path which leads to truth so surely, that any one 
who will follow it must needs reach the goal, whether his capacity be 
great or small, and there is one guiding rule by which a man can always 
find this path, and keep himself from straying when he has found it. 
This rule is: *Give assent to no propositions but those, the truth of which 
is so clear, that they cannot be doubted.* '* 


Many persons evince a pride in what they are pleased to term their 
^'common sense," who believe that they are endowed with an extra 
share of that intangible article. They will dismiss the subject tinder 
consideration by the statement, "It is arrant nonsense; I do not believe 
a word of it," and the next moment proceed to relate some case of birth 
mark of which they are cognizant. It seems beyond the power of such 
persons to grasp the possibilities of the idea, that mind controls matter, 
which in its simplest form is displayed in every conscious act of their 
lives, from rising in the morning to their lying down in the evening. 

Some understand that mental action will produce disorder of bodily 
functions, and then refuse to believe, that a mother who is in a condition 
of great susceptibility, exerts a powerful influence upon the being whose 
form she is preparing for its advent into the sphere of action upon this 
earthly plane, or that she can increase or retard its growth within 
natural limitations. This class of parrot philosophers utter cries which 
they never analyze; one theory is as good as another to them, if it is 
only based upon the dogmatic assertion of some wise-man. Mankind 
has ever failed to obey the call of reason, but has been prone to accept the 
dictum of philosophers, without examining into the truth of an asser- 
tion. It will no doubt always be so with illogical thinkers, and the ad- 
vocates of the theory of maternal impression, who contend that it is the 
unknown factor, which all writers upon heredity, evolution, or similar 
questions, say is necessary to complete the various theories, will be met 
by the old cry of nonsense. And when overwhelming evidence is pre- 
sented, and the theory of maternal impression as the factor in the /cause 
of varieties is proven to be correct, then will come the second stage, by 
the cry of— as yet we know not what— after which the third stage will 
be in order, as it was in Harvey *s case, "Why that is not new at all; it 
was known many years ago, before Harvey was bom." And we 
answer: That it has never been advanced or accepted by any acknowl- 
edged scientist of any age. 

"If ever the reformation of the world is to be accomplished, if ever a millen- 
inm is to appear, it can only become so by a thorough knowledge of the laws 
which govern reproduction." 


The fundamental idea of maternal impression is, that the mother's 
idiosyncrasies, her likes and dislikes, good or bad humor, gentle or ugly 
and mean spirit, affect the forming brain and body of her offspring, thus 
shaping its physical structure and endowing it with characteristics 
which differ from its parent in accordance with the mother's mood, as 
differing as she is different from her normal condition. 

It is such changes or differentiation in the variation of humanity 
that is such a mystery. It produces the many characters, mental and 


pbytical, which cannot be accounted for by the scientist, and because no 
other reason could be giren, the name "Atavism" was invented, behind 
which lurks ignorance of previous conditions. The subject of maternal 
impression is immensely complex, and to a student of the question, it 
will be a wonderful revelation when investigated through or in its 
various ramifications. 

In this work we have but penetrated the outer circle of the subject, 
and, therefore, sweeping generalities would be premature. But we ven- 
ture the assertion that every mental improvement or retrogression in a 
human being, which cannot be directly traced to a progenitor (the last 
clause is inserted in deference to those who believe in heredity) , its cause 
will be found in the mother's impressions— that is, the state of her mind 
before the birth of her child. This, if proven, and we hope to make it 
clear even to one of dull intellect, will explain the cause of varieties, 
the differentiation, or the differences which are noticeable in members of 
the same family. 

We do not claim to be able to explain the process, but to explain the 
factor which governs the process through which varieties are produced, 
and the ultimate aim of this work is to teach the masses how to pro- 
duce a more uniform class of human beings— that is, to retard the birth 
of physical and mental abnormities. We hope to shed a ray of light 
that will enable those who heed the lessons taught, to bring forth chil- 
dren who will be well bom, and thus save a few from misery in the 
future, who would otherwise suffer through the ignoronce of their 


"Ignoratice is the parent of much error." 

The basic principle which we wish to impress upon the reader is: 
That a mother ^ho is in the condition to which attention is called, who 
has an imperfectly formed object, such as a monstrosity of any kind in 
her mind, and dwells upon it, or has impure or vulgar thoughts*, and 
mean or unholy ideas, or who has murder in mind— that is, would like 
to kill her unborn babe,— will impress such a formation of the brain 
structure of her offspring, as will form its desires in the direction which 
her thoughts have taken. Like must produce like ; like she is at that 
time, not as she was or will be at some other time. "A corrupt tree 
cannot bring forth good fruit." Make the tree good, and the fruit will 
be, must be, good. 


We contend that the subject of maternal impression should be 
taught in the higher grade of schools and colleges, and primarily by the 
parents in the homes. It can be done, and so worded that it would 
not seem a hardship for the parent to teach, or the child to understand ; 
and no offense could be taken by the most sensitive and refined minds. 


The daughters should be taught that when they become mothers, as 
€ach one expects to be in the course of time a wife and mother, when 
that time arrives, i. e., expectant motherhood, their thoughts must be 
pure and their minds free froln any unholy or abnormal desires; if not, 
the offspring will partake of the disposition and nature which she dis- 
plays at that time. 

It is inevitable, as will be shown in this work, and the sons should 
be instructed upon the same subject, although it is not so essential; but 
it would assist them in their endeavors to become the fathers of well 
born children— teach them to be considerate, and properly environ their 
wives, thus assisting them to overcome any abnormal ideas. 

This subject, if thoroughly comprehended by the youth of the land, 
would relieve the coming generations from the taint of criminality, 
which seemingly is overshadowing us. Young men and women, fathers 
and mothers, must be taught the criminality of sex relation, which 
would be likely to produce abnormal physical or mental characters in 
their posterity. 

The subject is taken up with unfeigned humility, but at the same 
time, with the hope of making it so readable, not alone for those whom 
it is intended to assist in their capacity as parents, but also to help such 
as have passed that period, and who are living their youthful days over 
again, when contemplating and teaching their grand children in whom 
they are presumed to take an interest. 

To those who are looking for light upon the family relation, it will 
be a blessing and not a curse, as is often found in works whose under- 
lying idea is to prevent the multiplication of children. Not a line will be 
found in that direction, but the teaching is wholly to avoid the danger 
of producing ill-born children; ill-bom, in the sense of crooked and 
dwarfed brains and deformed bodies. To show that none are free from 
such danger, we quote from Prof. Henderson, of the University of Chi- 
cago, who estimates: "That of the feeble-minded, one-fifth are from the 
rich or well to do classes, another fifth from the pauper element, and 
three-fifths are the product of the middle or working classes." This 
refers only to mental deformities; the blind, the deaf, and the malformed 
make another large class. 

The suggestions found in this work are for those who see the need of 
their application to the existing affairs of every day life, and the need of 
an education upon this line. They will become convinced that something 
more potent than mere intellectual culture is required, to overcome the 
evil tendencies of the age. 

The subject is made very plain, yet pure in tone. It was compulsory 
to reiterate some of the ideas to arrive at the conclusions, which always 
point in the same direction, and it was necessary, to avoid mystifying 


the average reader by the use of what might be called unintelligible 
terms. A weightier reason for repetitions was to more thoroughly im- 
press upon the reader's mentality these truths, if they be truths. 

I hope to invest the entire subject of maternal impression with an 
interest which will bring it near to the heart and conscience of every 
lover of humanity, as well as conviction to the mind of every mother, 
who is in its fullest and holiest sense, a true mother. 

The reader will be invited to a superficial examination of biology, 
evolution, heredity, and atavism, as Well as natural selection and rever- 
sion to type, up to the varied dispositions that are found in mankind, 
and which are traceable through a course of logical interpretation to 
the theory of maternal impression. After which students will be able 
to clearly understand many of the phenomena that will come under their 
own observation ; this will enable them to avoid the dangers which be- 
set the average parent. 

In the closing chapters there is one, entitled, "Mother's Longings," 
and another, "Advice to Prospective Mothers," in which the danger to 
their offspring is pointed out so clearly, that none can err. Young 
wives, and especially prospective mothers, are advised to read those two 
chapters at once, leaving the other portions of the book for leisure 
hours. This advice is given because those chapters contain a digest, as 
it were, of the entire subject, and are important to any woman in such 
a condition. 

Also a chapter on Epilepsy, in which the writer has formulated a 
premise, which has, at least, the merit of being logical, and if mothers 
will heed the lessons that may be drawn from it, will save many human 
beings in the future from mental and physical degeneracy. No possible 
harm can arise from its study. 

There is a chapter upon the control of sex; that is to say, it teaches 
or points out a danger that may result in a mental interference with 
nature, by a mother's longings for a daughter, when God intends that 
the product shall be a son, and vice versa. 

"If human precedents fail thee, go back to nature and think; 
As if thou was't the first man that ever thought.'* 

This work will not commend itself to technical students, only so far 
as it paves the way, and teaches how to proceed in the investigation of 
phenomena along the line of the mental and physical variation in the 
human race. 

It will be of assistance to the biological student in his search for the 
cause of varieties in general, and blazes a path, as it were, by which one 
can arrive at a given point much quicker and easier than by going over 
the regular route which the student is usually compelled to travel, after 





which it will be in order for those who wish to become expert biologists 
to retrace their steps and take a systematic course, which will then be 
more easily comprehended. 

It is largely an appeal to the wider, more expanded scope of intelli- 
gence, the common sense and sound judgment of the general public, and 
it is for their instruction. It is not in any sense profound, but it deals 
with the every day problems of life, which are of grave and abiding im- 
portance to each and all. Nor does it presume to stand upon its literary 
merits or originality, for it has none, and the author feels that the 
remark of the Riy, Mr. Spurgeon is applicable: "I lay no claim to orig- 
inality, but confess myself a gatherer of other men's goods;" and the 
Rev. Henry Ward Beecher*s homlier but more significant phrase; "1 
browse in all pastures, but the cud I chew is my own.** It is a reitera- 
tion of truths, which are only partially known, but the facts are patent 
as soon as attention is called to them. 

If this work is unsound in principle and faulty in logic, neatly- 
rounded sentences and well worded phrases will not save it from obliv- 
ion. If worthy of attention, ungrammatical expression and simple dic- 
tion will not condemn it among those to whom it is commended. 

It is inspired not alone by a firm conviction that education is neces- 
sary to overcome the evil tendencies of the age, which are increasing, a»^ 
is shown by the overcrowded condition of prisons, reformatories, and 
lunatic asylums, but that the time is ripe for a departure from, or an 
addition to, the present system of education of the masses upon the sub- 
ject of reproduction, and through such instruction arrive at a partial 
solution of the crime and misery which is so prevalent. 

Intelligent business men feel the need of such an education for their 
children, and are asking. Why are educators so backward? The answer 
to which is. They do not understand it. They have spent a great deal 
of time studying the philosophy of heredity, evolution and kindred sub- 
jects, and when the books were closed, and they were supposed to be 
through with them, they had no clear conception of the subjects and 
were unable to find a single suggestion in any philosophic work which 
they had studied that would enable one to begin the investigation of any- 
problem, upon the line of the mental or physical variation in man. 

There has been but little written upon the subject of maternal im- 
pression by scientists; in fact, what there is, is usually by persons who 
do not lay any claim to that title, and it is so hedged about by mislead- 
ing terms and confrising phraseology that only mystifies the reader, by 
its professional tone. 

What is meant by professional tone is illustrated by the word 
"Asthenontology." It cannot be found in any dictionary, and is said to 
mean "The science of caring for the needy and unfortunate." The fre- 


quent tasc of such tinititelligible terms, which are often found in scientific 
works, is apt to dampen the ardor of the average reader, and is confus- 
ing. This book contains not a line but that is couched in language 
easily understood, and it can be read and comprehended in the family 
circle and in the school room. 

Scientific writers usually lay great stress upon and describe pro- 
cesses, investigate the relation of anatomical parts, emphasize averages, 
and describe the habitations of life, from the smallest unit up to and in- 
cluding the human body, but do not attempt to explain the cause of 
mental variations. The physical facts are emphasized, and human per- 
sonality, or its mental nature, is a mystery to all. They have collated 
various theories without arriving at any definite conclusions. 'Tis true, 
many of them affirm that evolution is an indisputable fact; others deny 
it, as for instance Jordan, who says, "Evolution is a term belonging to 
metaphysics." The process of evolution, except in a limited sense, has 
never been demonstrated. By limited sense is meant, that the progeny 
of a horse will never be a cow, the spawn of a frog will not produce a 
fish, or a hen's egg an ostrich. 

"The carefully nurtured and technically balanced brain of a professor 
of organic evolution, teaches how to pulverize into atoms, all super- 
natural propositions," and also attempts to teach the origin of species, 
and tries to harmonize science, philosophy, and religion, instead of look- 
ing for truths which will assist in elevating mankind to a higher stand- 
ard. Emerson says, "The progress of the intellect consists in a clearer 
vision of the truth, leaving surface differences alone^" 

It is apparent to every thoughtful mind, that the age is permeated 
by dense ignorance upon the very important question, how humanity 
gets its varied peculiarities. Some charge it to heredity, or to atavism, 
and call it acquired character. Call it by any name you please, it is a 
subject of vital importance, and is of greater interest to the welfare of 
humanity than any other question which is engrossing the mind of stu- 
dents of sociology. 

Whether acquired character is transmitted or not; whether it is 
acquired by education or the environment of the mother; whether an 
individual obtains the character which it possesses, by or through hered- 
ity; or whether it is formed by forces over which no human being has 
any control, i. e. evolution ; or whether a factor exists which has never 
been taken into account by scientists, i. e. maternal impressions; or 
whether an individual can by education overcome the innate tendencies 
of his being, alter, as it were, his capacity, or enlarge the brain structure 
so as to be able to comprehend the good which is taught him, if his ten- 
dency is to evil, is a subject which demands the attention of all who are 
interested in the welfare of humanity here and hereafter, and upon its 


solution depends the future condition of the human race, and the means 
for its improvement will follow close upon its solution. 

Dr. Forbes Winslow says, ''That something more potent than mere 
intellectual culture is required to be put in force, for the purpose of regu- 
lating the conduct of respectable beings, with a free will, across the 
stormy sea of life, from birth to death." 

In commenting upon the statement of Dr. Winslow, the editor of the 
*'Arena"says: "This great truth has been so thoroughly ignored in 
educational literature and home training, that it is, more than anything 
else, responsible for the deplorable condition of affairs which meets the 
conscientious student of human life on every side." 

The question to which the reader's attention is called is, what is 
that * 'Something more potent" which is necessary; and the careful 
reader, before this book is read through, will be convinced that the key 
to its solution is at hand, and a way pointed out by which the masses 
can be improved and the human race lifted out of the mire of degrada- 
tion and crime. 

The danger of producing abnormal characters can be reduced to a 
minimum by teaching the daughters the danger of ignorance in regard 
to maternal impressions ; also, eliminate what is still more dangerous, 
false knowledge which they are liable to acquire if parents and the state 
neglect their duty. If the daughters are properly instructed they will 
become broad-minded, sensible, cultured, womanly women, and their 
children well born, both morally and physically. 

"It is easier to mould moulten, than to file colocast iron." 

Mankind can be elevated to a higher plane than it now occupies, but 
it can only come to its full fruition by a knowledge of the laws which 
govern the reproduction of the race. It cannot be done by trying to 
bend or twist inborn characteristics to suit our wishes. 

How shall the masses be reached? How interest the coming parents? 
It must be done by public educators, teachers, and others who are 
in educational work, and their efforts supplemented by the parents 
would make it effective. It is, to say the least, surprising that educators 
have not comprehended the fact that something has been lacking to 
make their work more effective, and in its comprehension they might 
have discovered the cause. 

That the subject of maternal impression is worthy the attention of 
the enlightened minds of the age, there can be no doubt, when the 
increase of crime and imbecility is considered. How much the world has 
suffered through a neglect to educate on the line of reproduction, can 
never be told. We can guess, but never know, how many are suffering 
from abnormal brain development, and the cases of which the public is 


cogfaizant, are evidisflftces that nature has been obstructed, her laws inter- 
fered with somewhere, somehow. A careful study in any class of society 
would reveal idiosyncrasies without number, as symmetrical men and 
women, either mental or physical, are scarce, and a very thin, gauzy 
partition divides some brains from idiocy. 

The problem for the educator and humanitarian is, to build the best 
out of the material which is at hand ; that material is. the human race 
as it exists at present, and it must be educated so that future genera- 
tions will be benefited by such education. If teachers would devote 
some of the time, now expended in teaching the material and artistic 
part of modem civilization, to other phases of mental culture, i. e. to 
assist parents through such an education to produce more perfect 
brains, which would naturally bring with it physical perfection, many 
beauties of nature and its possibilities, would be revealed, and many in 
the future would be free from a tendency to commit crime and conse- 
quent sin. 

The reader will pardon a digression at this point and allow the 
author to indulge in a little moralizing. The motive which impels one 
to do something that will help others to live better, nobler lives, has as 
its fundamental principle the elevation of humanity, and is animated by 
a religious sentiment, a desire to do good, and thus assist mankind ; 
when to this is added a sympathetic feeling for its ills, there will be found 
the foundation of all soul elevation, and backof it justice. Underneath all 
moral and physical degradation there is somewhere injustice, as it is not 
in accordance with rhc laws of God, if it were, there could be no wrong. 

In the birth of the many physically and mentally deformed, there 
has been injustice done, largely caused by ignorance in dealing with the 
subtle forces of nature which governs God's noblest handiwork, man! 
And the fact of so much desire to do good, by the humanitarians of this 
age, is a gleam of hope that a brighter day is dawning for the race of 
man. Every good deed has as its main-spring good behind it, and the 
very act of doing good, lifts the doer of the good into a higher, purer, 
moral atmosphere, because it ennobles the doer and makes him a 
grander man. No act is ever greater than the motive which impels it, 
and there is a greater transforming power in the motive of an act, than 
in the act itself. 

We are only anxious for the truth, with a desire to promote the 
truth, and that only so far as it will elevate mankind, morally and phys- 
ically. We should know the truth ; the truth will make us free. This 
work is an attempt to add one stone to the arch of truth. "Whenever 
you learn anything that will benefit another, tell it in the best way you 
can, and to the best of your ability." 




A careful study of the theory of Maternal Impressions, and ihe 
many facts in its favor which are presented in this work, will convince 
the reader that a prospective mother has the power to produce a brain 
and body such as she desires, limited only by her mentality and the 
limitations of nature, that is to say, a human mother cannot produce 
anything but a human being, or a semblance of humanity. 

If it be conceded) and it must be: First— That mothers can, and 
they do, produce deformities. Second— That a mother can influence the 
desire of her child, for or against certain articles of food or dress. 
Tbird^That she can affect the nervous system of her offspring before its 
birth. Then the conclusions must be that she forms the brain structure 
of her offspring, good or bad, as the case may be, and does it consciously 
or unconsciously, and in this book there is an attempt to teach a mother 
how she can knowingly produce offspring who will be a blessing to 
themselves, to her, and to the world. But we hear a protest: You are 
laying a terrible responsibility upon the mothers ! O, no ! Nature and 
nature's God places that responsibility upon them. **It is the law of 
fact, if you discover not that fact, you wifl know it by and by; if you 
regard it not, it will answer itself." 

See to it, parents, that your children are instructed on correct lines; 
do not let ideas of false modesty keep you froih teaching nattq-e's truth ; 
nature's right truth will make them free. 

PART 1. 


^**,S ,. 



"He who shall explain the origin of varieties will have made another 
£;reat step in completing the theory of evolution." 

Le Conte. 

"Human mentality is a powerful factor in the cause of human 

Prof. H. W. Parker. 

"There is in nature some hitherto unknown principle of adoptive 
modification, which is at present almost as unsuspected as was the 
principle of natural selection fifty years ago." 

Romanes, in 1893. 



The general reader will pardon the insertion of a few 
lines, which are intended solely for the benefit of some who 
are rooted to old ideas upon the subject of pre-natal impress- 
ions, and who are so peculiarly constituted that they decline 
to entertain any proposition or theory, unless it emanates 
from what they are pleased to call "recognized authority." 

The following is taken, verbatim, from The Annual Ameri- 
can Year Book of Medicine and Surgery for 1896, page 359, 
and credited to The Medical News of Oct. 27, 1894. We say 
verbatim — it is, with the exception of a few technical terms, 
which have been put into other words, for obvious reasons. 
They will be found in brackets. It says; "With the object 
of arriving at some definite conclusion, as to whether or not 
maternal impressions may deform [the unborn child]. Dr. 
Work sent the following questions to physicians whose opin- 
ions on any subject cannot be lightly regarded: First — Do 
pronounced impressions, made upon a mind of a [prospective 
mother], predispose to bodily defects, or birth-marks, in the 
child? Second — Do such impressions influence the mental 
development of the child? Third — If defects are thus pro- 
duced, which of the emotions most frequently cause the de- 
fects? The first two questions were answered in the affirm- 
ative Ijy Drs. Penrose, Goodell, Starr, Mann, Hirst, Thombs, 
King, Edwards, Norbury and Waxham; in the negative by 
Drs. Halfield, Hawes and Ingalls." 




%'■■' ■ 

W- . 


Dr. Work says, further: "From a study of the scanty re- 
liable literature upon the subject, the following conclusions 
are drawn: First — That both physical and mental defects 
follow maternal mental impressions with such frequency as to 
establish the relationship of cause and eflFect. Second — ^That 
these conditions are the result of changes in the blood — 
chemic, circulatory, or both, Seems probable. Third — That 
the probability of defects in the [unborn child] from mental 
causes is dependent upon — mark the language of Dr. Nor- 
bury, — the mental habit, or mental characteristics, or suscept- 
ibility of the mother. Fourth — That maternal anticipation 
of defect in the child, has in itself no influence, in the absence 
of a strong impression. Fifth — That the impression need 
not be lasting to cause defects. Sixth — That personal ma- 
ternal injury is no more likely to mark the child, than the 
sight of it in another. Seventh — That the defect is not nec- 
essarily similar in location or appearance to the object creating 
the impression, but is likely to be. These conclusions of Dr. 
Work, based as they are upon such weighty authority, must 
be recognized as definitely proving the possibility of defects 
in the [prospective child] arising from this unusual cause. 
Hitherto the subject has been largely shrouded in mystery 
and popular superstition." 

On page 560 of the same work there is a case of congeni- 
tal rickets, reported by Dr. K. Osgood Mason: "The parents 
were unusual specimens of health and vigor. A severe fright 
to the mother (six months before the birth of this child) is 
suggested as a possible cause." 

The American Text Book of Obstetrics says: "A belief so 
universal, as that of maternal impressions affecting the pros- 
^pective child, and adhered to through centuries, is rarely en- 
tirely fallacious, especially when the subject is based upon 

Dr. Fordyce Barker says: "The weight of authority must 
be conceded to be in favor of the idea that maternal impres- 


sions may aflPect the growth, form, and character of the form- 
ing child." 

Dr. W. C. Dabney says: "From time immemorial, there 
has been a popular belief that impressions made upon the 
mind of a prospective mother would cause defects in her child. 
There are two classes of defects — mental and bodily — and they 
should be considered separately. The mental defect may be 
due to violent emotional disturbances of the mother before 
the birth of her child. ' It is generally acknowledged by those 
who have given the most attention to the subject that the 
character of the impression is of great importance. Anxiety 
and grief seems to hold the first place, and fear the second. 
So far as I can learn, great joy has produced no appreciable 

No doubt in the case of an exceedingly happy child, the 
cause of its good nature has never been investigated, but the 
mother's joyous mood must affect it. The writer has only in- 
vestigated one such case; as they are not harmful, they have 
not been thoroughly considered. There is no doubt, that 
whenever a good-dispositioned babe is born, the mother was 
perfectly contented with the fact that she was to become a 

Dr. Dabney says further: "It is useless to speculate upon 
the manner in which maternal impressions influence the men- 
tal development and character of the child. Upon this point 
we know absolutely nothing." 

Bodily defects have been attributed to maternal impres- 
sion by many writers, and why they have ignored the mental- 
ity is, to say the least, incomprehensible. They admit the 
mother's ability to shape or change the body from a normal 
to an abnormal one, and some writers, advance theories which 
are illogical and purely speculative. Bodily defects are ap- 
parent at birth, a mental defect is noticeable at a later period, 
and by that time the mental distress, if any, which occured, 
has been forgotten by the mother, therefore more diiBicult to 



Dr. Dabney refers to Eokitansky, a writer of sound judg- 
ment, who says: "The question whether mental emotions do 
influence the development of the child must be answered, Yes! 
One of the strongest arguments against maternal impression 
is that all deformities are due to errors of development." He 
says: "There are two difficulties in the way of this objection. 
It presupposes that all defects are errors of development^ 
which is not the case, rs marks have occurred late in the de- 

To show that an injury may occur at a. late date, the fol- 
lowing case is taken from the record of the London Obstet- 
rical Society, reported by Ashburton Thompson, on April 4, 
1877: "A woman was shocked upon seeing a man who had 
an artificial wind pipe. Its opening was directly under the 
chin. Two months later her child was bom with an opening 
in its throat in the same position." 

Dr. Dabney says further: "It is not a question as to how 
maternal impressions produce deformities, but whether they 
actually do produce them. Upon this question there are 
various points to be considered, i. e., the period at which the 
impression was made, the similarity of the defect in the child 
to the object making the impression upon the mother, the 
duration of ,the impression necessary to produce the eflFect, 
the character of the impressions which are liable to produce 
the result." 

He reports 97 cases: 21 hare lips, 21 defects of the upper 
extremities, 8 of the lower, 8 of the ears, 4 of the eyes, 20 of 
the head, neck and trunk, 15 of the skin and hair. Period, 
from before marriage up to four months after, and he adds: 
"It does not seem possible that such cases can occur at four 
months, but that a retrograde process is within the bounds of 
possibility." The case reported to thje London society proves 
that it is possible. This would go to show that a mother 
should exercise prudential care up to the birth of her babe. 

Dr Dabney says further: "With the light before us, it is 
advisable that a woman during this period should guard her- 


self against strong emotional disturbances of every kind, for 
fear of the effect upon her unborn child. Few as are the in- 
stances in which deformities are traceable to maternal impres- 
sions, they are sufficiently numerous and distressing when 
they do occur, to necessitate care on the mother's part." 

It is not necessary for a mother to be conscious of such 
impressions, or to expect a defect, for such a defect to occur. 
Dr. Drennan, of Iowa, reports the case of a boy bom to Mrs. 
G., who was minus a hand. Her brother, who had lost his 
hand before Mrs. G. was born, visited her shortly after her 
marriage, and assisted Mr. G. in working on the farm. Mrs. 
G. saw her brother morning, noon and night, but she was not 
conscious that it would have such an effect upon her babe; 
there was no shock or scare, simply the quiet, steady mental 

Dr. Hirst says: "A great fright, if it does not kill the 
child, may diminish its mental capacity. We must admit 
that while we cannot explain the susceptibility displayed by 
an unborn child, we are obliged to allow that the fact is as 
well established as any in medicine. I had occasion to 
administer hyperdermic injections to a woman in the early 
stages. Her child was born with identical spots upon its 

Dr. Talcot, surgeon at the Woman's Hospital, New York, 
says: *'I must say that I always had considerable skepticism 
as to maternal impression, and it arose from my ignorance of 
the subject. If sudden fright will produce malformation, 
why will not fits of anger or depression also affect the pros- 
pective child." 

The following is inserted to show how the world was per- 
meated by superstition upon the subject of the imperfect 
development of human beings. In the seventeenth century 
all monstrosities were regarded as entailed upon parents, as 
punishment in consequence of divine wrath, or they were the 
result of demoniacal influence. The latter view was general. 
It was held that God could not create such frightful objects; 


they were Satanic creatures. One distinguished authority of 
that age, Riolanus says: "Children with six fingers, giants, 
and dwarfs, who are made after the image of the devil, may 
be allowed to live," In the time of Cicero, with its enlight- 
ened philosophy, monstrosities were regarded as special 
harbingers of calamity, hence the name Monstrare, There 
are 500 cases of double monsters reported by Forster and to 
elaborate upon them would weary the reader. 

This work contains a record of cases, which will convince 
any unprejudiced reader that the members of the medical 
profession quoted are correct, i. e., that maternal impressions 
do aflPect the unborn child. 

Mrs. B., of W., said: "When my grandchild was bom it was 
of the average weight and appearance. Three, four, five, six 
months rolled around; it did not grow fat and plump as all 
healthy babies should. I tried many different foods; asked 
every mother I knew, and tested their plans, but to no pur- 
pose; the babe did not improve in weight, though otherwise 
healthy. One day I said to my daughter, *What did you long 
for?' At first she could think of nothing; I urged her to. tax 
her memory. *0h, yes! I wanted some salt pork for cooking, 
and C. (her husband) had forgotten to get it.' Acting upon 
that hint, I boiled a piece of salt pork; when cold, gave the 
baby very small pieces of it, which it greedily devoured, and 
from that moment it improved. She was given a little every 
day." And Mrs. B. added, "You have seen her, she is just as 
hearty as any child of her age." 

Mrs. B. is a very intelligent woman who was willing to 
relate this incident for the benefit of other mothers and 
babies. This is inserted here for physicians who may have 
been, or will be, puzzled with cases beyond their comprehen- 
sion; and the skeptical scientist is also advised to read the 
test case of Mrs. S., of R. (Chapter XXIV.) If either address 
of these ladies is desired for verification, it will be sent upon 
application to the author of this work. 




"This world Is no blot for U8, or blank; it means intensely, and means ffood; ta 
find its meaning is my meat and drink.' '— Browning. 

"Go back to nature, compare our abstracts with her facts, her workinfifs with 
our conceptions of them."— -^irgylc. 

By the term '^maternal impression," is meant, that the 
mother's wishes and desires affect the brain structure of her 
offspring, through which the mother's mentality is reproduced 
in her child, and its action, will and desire is ruled by its brain 
formation; that 'the mother's mentality will also give char- 
acter, shape and form to its features, its body and its limbs, 
thus producing a counterpart of the ideal which engrossed 
her mind at that time. Every idea, fancy, conceit, or notion, 
good or bad; every mean or licentious thought; every pure, 
noble, elevating sentiment that possesses her at any moment 
of time, while the development of her child is in progress, 
will, through the application of a positive law of nature— like 
produces like, or, to be more exact, similar produces similar- 
ity — generate the same characteristics in the offspring. A 
noted author says: "The process by which man is born into 
the world, and the circumstances which go to make him what 
he is, whether it be a theologian or a scapegrace, a mathema- 
tician or a fool, concerns us all. It is a subject of universal 
interest and of vital importance, whether it be considered 
from a physical, moral, social, or medical standpoint. It lies 
at the foundation of all human improvement and enduring 


There can be no doubt that the child inherits its organic 
life and its mentality from the parent, as the apple tree in- 
herits its structure and quality from the parent apple tree. 
But why does the apple tree, upon some of its branches, pro- 
duce wholesome fruit, and upon others, wormy, crabbed, 
gnarled and unhealthy fruit? We leave this question io 
the horticultural scientist to answer. Why do parents who 
are physically and mentally sound, produce children who are 
like themselves in all respects, so far as we can see, then pro- 
duce one who is mentally and physically deformed? In one 
case, a child who is a blessing to the world, and the other, a 
blight upon them or a curse to itself and an injury to all with 
whom it comes in contact? 

Why this variety under the same circumstances, if, as we 
are told by scientists, that heredity is the all powerful factor? 
How much of the mannerisms, character; good and bad tem- 
per, likes and dislikes, do the parents give the child, ajad why 
not to one child the same as to the other? 

The study of this work will clear away a great deal of the 
mystery which surrounds this question. Good and logical 
reasons are given why human characters are as they are. 
No school of philosophy, up to date, has been able to do 
this. Its study will teach the reader how to begin an investi- 
gation of various phenomena in the cause of mental varieties 
of mankind, as well as physical imperfections. 

We are living in an age of profound investigation which 
demands facts, but have unsettled convictions in regard to 
many fundamental truths. Some are of vital importance to 
the welfare of mankind. One of these truths — unsolved — is 
the cause of the many peculiar natures in the human species. 
Among them are many types of criminals, and those who are 
born physically deformed — the club-footed, those with hand- 
less arms, the congenital blind and deaf, as well as many 
other deformities with which humanity is afflicted — and the 
study of this work will teach how to avoid the production of 




all such if the subject is comprehended; nor will it be at all 
difficult to understand. 

It is evident that no investigation can be had upon the 
subject, nor can its study begin, unless it is based upon 
hypothesis. Advance in scientific knowledge is always made 
by guess, then is confronted by facts, these with new facts 
that are made more or less possible but not certain; inces- 
sant testing and guessing will throw ligh t upon the subject, 
and men of sound intellect will always welcome earnest and 
honest investigation; it is only narrow minds that refuse to 
examine any new facts in the study of man. 

The student must leave all old ideas out of the ques- 
tion while pursuing the investigation of any phenomena 
on the line of maternal impressions. In recordi ng the facts 
and drawing conclusions therefrom, he must provide an argu- 
ment which will be clear and easily comprehended. The 
classification of facts, and the relation they bear to each 
other, as well as the conclusions, must be as near irrefutable 
as it is possible to make them. When investigating a phe* 
nomena, every possible precaution should be taken to get 
accurate results. **Doubt is always the first stage toward a 
scientific inquiry ." In the practical study of any phenomena, 
it will be necessary to accept theories as a guide, and through 
the phenomena the student will be able to get a clearer insight 
into the relation which certain facts bear to the subject which 
is under invest igation. A scientific study is something more 
than putting facts together; they must be examined in their 
true relation to each other, and it is essential that no facts be 
omitted in forming a conclusion. Theories are safe only 
when they point and lead to correct results, and are so far 
valuable as they are measured by the importance of the sub- 
ject which can be explained by them. Do not attempt to 
solve a problem with theories which are not supported by 
sound reasons and facts that have a bearing upon the ques- 
tion. Experience is a much safer guide, and where it can be 
had, it is always surer than theory. 


Careful research will be necessary in examining any ab- 
stract phenomena, and it must be studied in the concrete. 
An astronomer does not have the whole universe at his dis- 
posal. A thorough study of that which is in his grasp will 
give him an insight into the laws which govern the whole; 
only from minute subjects in any line of investigation can 
the greater or completed structure be correctly studied, and 
only through close scrutiny can one arrive at a definite con- 
clusion. The accuracy of a conclusion is in proportion to 
the extent and correct observation of the various facts which 
are found, and when there are no exceptions in the sequence 
of cause and effect, the conclusion may be relied upon. Some 
events may be disturbed by circumstances which modify or 
prevent an expected occurrence; the careful notation of all 
influences and their extent must be considered to enable one 
to arrive at a proper solution. This method, from detail to 
generalities, is necessary in the case of a problem in pre-natal 

In an investigation of this theory and its bearing upon 
the cause of varieties, it is essential that all the causes which 
make for or against the phenomena be carefully considered, 
and the conclusions should not be hastily drawn. 

If you decide that maternal impressions had no bearing 
upon the problem, it will be found that in the investigation 
of that particular case, a factor has been omitted, and you 
have not considered that the person interviewed does not 
always remember an impression that she must have had. We 
say musty from the fact that the peculiarity did not originate 
of its own accord, and there is a factor for the student to 
locate before a proper solution can be had. 

Investigate the mother's mentality. Is she of sluggish 
disposition, or is her memory poor? In either case, she may 
say: "I did not have any earnest desire on the line you are 
investigating; if I had, no doubt it would have been strong 
enough to enable me to remember it," or, "That scare which 
I received was only momentary, and it did not make a strong 


impression, so I gave it no further thought" (see case of Mrs. 
T's child with defective eye), in such a case the factor that 
should be carefully weighed, is, Is the mother's memory good, 
and can it be relied upon? 

If the mother's mind is largely engrossed with an idea, as 
for instance in the case of Professor Herron (see chapter on 
Christian Character), where his mother's mind was filled with 
the desire that her child should be an earnest disciple of the 
Savior. In such a case her ofiPspring will be wholly imbued 
and influenced by that desire, and will show it in every wak- 
ing moment; but if the mother has only a momentary impres- 
sion, which for a short time engrosses her mind, then only 
slight effects will be noticed, or, through environment, be 
completely subdued. If the mother's impressions occur every 
month or more, and they are strong, then the uncontrollable 
desire will seize the individual at certain periods. 

This explains the desire of some persons to drink to excess 
periodically, and the remark is often heard that a certain per- 
son gets on a spree once or twice a year. There are very few 
mothers who do not remember strong impressions, as such 
incidents are apt to linger and cannot be forgotten. 

In the study of maternal impressions, mild cases, as well 
as those which are strongly marked, should be investigated. 
No single case can be taken, upon which to form a conclusion 
as to the cause of varieties. It will be necessary to examine 
various personalities, thus enabling the investigator, through 
many repetitions of similar phenomena, to arrive at definite 


"I seem to myself like a child, playing on the sea shore, and picking up here 
and there a curious stone, or pretty pebble, while the boundless ocean of truth 
lies undiscovered before me."— Sir Isaac Newton. 

It is well to be clear as to what is meant by variation. The 
type is hereditary; variation is congenital modification. This 
work does not assume to give any facts as to how the various 


types of man originated; it does, however, teach how the 
mental variations are produced, and that leads incidentally to 
physical variations, such as abnormities and monstrosities. 
Nor does it pretend to give a scientific exposition of the cause, 
but it is a basis from which studies can be made that will 
lead to a clearer conception, and more knowledge of the cause 
of the various types of mankind. There was no intent at the 
inception of this work, to take up the subject of physical 
varieties. But it was compulsory so far as its relation to 
abnormal physical development was concerned. 

Eventually the basic principle of the cause of physical 
varieties in man will be found to have originated in maternal 
impressions, influenced by environment. Of this there is not 
a doubt in the mind of 'the writer. Every case which has 
been investigated, the blind, the deaf, the club-footfed, all 
so-called birth marks; in short, all abnormities led directly to 
pre-natal impressions, as the prime or controlling factor. 
There was no way to escape the conclusion, and it was im- 
possible to formulate any other premise to explain the causes. 

To find the cause of the increase of crime, as well as the 
many unfortunate victims of their mother's ignorance, the 
blind, the deaf, and those otherwise maimed, was the impel- 
ling reason for this study, and the interest taken in the sub- 
ject was solely that some good might be done. If may seem 
presumptuous for the writer to say that he had discovered 
the cause of varieties; but that some facts have been added 
to the very limited general knowledge of the subject found in 
the many voluminous works in libraries, and that tho clue is 
given to the solution of the question, will be admitted by all 
who will carefully follow the line of argument. The informa- 
tion that the reader will find, and the way to avoid the dan- 
gers which beset an expected child, that would affect its 
whole life, for weal or woe, is made so clear to the reader, that 
the most uninformed person who can read and comprehend 
simple English, will understand it and will get a clearer in- 
sight into what seems so mysterious. That the cause of men- 


tal disorder and the cause of physical deformities is made in- 
telligible will not be questioned by any f airminded reader of 
the most scientific turn of mind. Some facts were found in 
medical works, which led to a few deductions, but as a class, 
medical writers have refused to investigate the subject, and 
there are only a few leading minds among them who admit 
that maternal impressions have a bearing in the formation 
of abnormities or monstrosities of mankind. 

In this investigation, no man's dictum, or dogmatic asser- 
tion, has been accepted because of his standing. All argu- 
ments were carefully weighed and if found wanting, were dis- 
carded; nor was the opinion of the humblest discredited, if 
sustained by facts. In this work a plan has been adopted 
that very few authors have been able to follow, which was to 
read the various subjects to casual acquaintances. The writ- 
er's business has enabled him to do this, and every objection, 
or idea gathered, has been carefully digested, and if valid ac- 
cepted. Professional men were called on, from whom techni- 
cal ideas have been gleaned, criticisms requested, and carefully 
weighed. Various state institutions have been visited, but 
the most valuable data has been obtained by interviewing 
mothers in their homes. In this manner much information 
has been acquired, and a critical analysis given to it, coming 
as it has from various intellects. Such criticisms could not 
have been had if this work had been formulated in a labor- 
atory, written in a library and criticised by some professional, 
who would have been unable to look at the subject from dif- 
ferent stand-points, and who would have been led by the 
argument to accept the views of the writer as the subject was 
unfolded. Common sense, reason and observation have been 
called into action in this investigation, and no preconceived 
ideas have been allowed to influence conclusions. In this 
search for truth we have knocked at all doors behind which 
there were any facts that would lead to a knowledge of cause 
and effect; appeals to imagination were never made, nor are 
speculations set up for facts. Some scientists have said that 



il is impossible for the mind of man to understand the phe- 
nomena of human varieties. It would have been more scien- 
tific to advise the student to accept no man's dictum. Inves- 
tigate, study carefully, comprehend what is found, if possible^ 
and if unable to unlock the secret of nature, then, and not 
until then, give up. 

It is said by scientific men, that the cause of the varieties 
of organic nature has not been discovered, and judging from 
the many books written upon the subject of man and his 
origin, the question they were after, was, where did man's 
organism come from? This phase of the subject has not 
been considered; it has been so thoroughly elaborated by abler 
minds, who have arrived at iio definite conclusion. In this 
work, the causes of the various peculiarities of man's mental 
nature is the subject to which attention is called, and his 
physical nature, as it appears, incidentally. The attempt to 
show the cause of varieties will be followed by a clearer so- 
lution of the problem, and this premise, with its conclusions, 
is more logical, containing more nuclei from which to work 
problems than has ever before been promulgated. If those 
who contest the conclusions, will logically combat them, new 
facts will appear, and the result will be a clearer concep- 
tion of the cause of varieties. A more perfect knowledge will 
be attained by patient and careful attention to the fixed and 
constant laws of nature, using the best talent each one has. 
Thus the secret of nature may be more fully unfolded. 

Whether the varieties in man are the result of a perversion 
of natural lawa, or whether they are in harmony with them, 
is the fundamental question, and whether, with a knowledge 
of the natural laws that govern reproduction, it is possible to 
attain a higher standard; that is, Can the masses be elevated 
in the moral scale? To this the answer is, yes, and this work 
tries to show how it can be done. Its study will teach how 
to alleviate some of the misery in the future, by preventing 
the birth of monstrosities and malformations, which are now 
so prevalent. There are no lack of subjects. This work could 



have been extended far beyond the limits assigned to it, but 
it would weary the average reader, for whose benefit it is 

In all phenomena which relates to human charaoteristics 
there is found the same stimulus, and all effects lead inevit- 
ably to the same cause, therefore repetitions in such investi- 
gations were unavoidable. There was no way to avoid a 
recurrence of the same language to make the subject clear to 
the average reader. This fact of itself, if the work was elab- 
orated, would make such a book tiresome. After this volume 
has been studied, a person of fair ability will be able to solve 
almost any problem in the line of peculiarities that may be 
noticed. The study has led into a much wider field than was 
expected, and as it opened, and its immense importance to 
mankind became obvious, it dawned upon the author that 
here is a subject which overshadows all other questions, and 
that it is the key note to the elevation of humanity. 

In making an investigation, unexpected factors appeared, 
which I was compelled to study to arrive at a correct con- 
clusion, and the labor necessary to a proper solution was 
greatly enhanced. In searching for material to study, there 
has been much laborious work, as there are no authorities 
who give any clue as to the cause of varieties which could be 
used as a starting point. The investigation has been carried 
over a wide field, not by laboratory methods, but in the realm 
of real life, which is an experience that few have been enabled 
to acquire — that is, in the study of man's mentality. It has 
taken a great deal of self-denial to get the data in many 
cases — to mix among the indolent, idiots, and criminals; to 
delve into libraries without any appreciable benefit. But 
there is a satisfaction in knowing that new ideas iire coming 
to the front which will benefit mankind. The ideas here 
given may seem radical, but there is a consolation to one who 
is looking for facts in knowing that if the conclusions are 
erroneous, the mistakes will soon be discovered. It is truth 
we are after — not alone because it is truth — but that it may 







benefit humanity. The subject is so vast, and lies not only 
at the foundation of good morals, but also physical perfection. 

The subject which should engross the mind and energy of 
the humanitarian is, "What will be beneficial to the human 
race; what will elevate and ennoble it?" This naturally leads- 
to the question under consideration — the cause of varieties. 
It is the question of all questions, and it must be considered 
before there can be any permanent improvement of the 
masses. As society is organized at present, both church and 
state are resting upon an unstable foundation. If the law of 
Reversion to Type* is a fact, and all scientists admit it, then it 
is essential to the welfare of the nation to know how to coun- 
teract that law. Mankind must go on developing successively 
higher planes, or it will retrograde. ♦ There is no such thing 
as repose in nature. Opposing forces are constantly at work* 
Nothing in nature stands still. 

The reason why so many human beings are born crimi- 
nals must be more intelligently comprehended, and means in- 
stituted to produce good citizens in place of the dependent 
classes. If this is not done, then all efforts for the moral im- 
provement of the race in the future will be thwarted, as it i» 
at present, and the result of all humanitarian work will be 
only partially successful. The Creator has endowed man witk 
intelligence that enables him to understand the laws which 
govern the universe, and the Christian world professes to 
know the laws which God has laid down for man's moral 
guidance; but they have neglected to study or have overlooked 
the natural laws which govern the reproduction of the race, 
and by conforming to those laws, do the will of God as 
required. The very fact of the existence of such laws i& 
evidence that it is God's will. One who attempts to investi- 
gate the cause of varieties, is confronted at the very outset 
by the scientific statement, "That mankind came from a 
common origin, and the varied characters were created by di- 

*The law. of Reversion to Type is argrued at leagth in Chapter V., to which th& 
reader's attention is nailed. 



rect act of Deity." And the teaching of the church has been, 
**That man is endowed with his character by the Creator, and 
that it is the will of God." This being the concensus of 
opinion, the student feels that he is liable to waste his time and 
energy in attempting to find the cause of varieties. 

If all men are of common origin, and the many phases of 
character in man are caused by the direct act of Deity, why 
was one created good and true, another such a fiend incarnate? 
One a genius, who by his poetry and song has lifted mankind 
to a nobler plane, the other a foul blot upon the face of the 
earth, — cruelty personified? Man's physical nature has been 
thoroughly examined by able men, and his bodily structure 
carefully studied. It is not essential in this argument to 
enter into that phase of the subject, and it will mainly treat 
upon the moral and mental varieties in man, with their effects 
upon the social and business life of the age. 

In an investigation of any phenomena, all facts must be 
considered. Do not fail to examine every factor which may 
have a bearing upon the problem. Strongly marked peculi- 
arities are the easiest to investigate, and as the search is pro- 
longed, minor cases will act as side lights, which will enable 
the student to fathom a great deal that is now a hidden page. 

It will be impossible to study humanity as a whole; indi- 
vidual cases must be taken and studied in the abstract. As 
a starting point in an investigation of the cause of varieties, 
select two children in a family of the same parentage, whose 
tastes and desires are dissimilar, who are not alike in any 
sense. To illustrate: One is very modest and retiring in his 
manner; quiet and unobtrusive, of a phlegmatic temperament; 
never becomes excited, and is what the casual observer calls 
dull of comprehension, with no love for the bustle and excite- 
ment of a crowd. The other inquisitive, always pushing him- . 
self to the front to find out what is going on, noisy in his 
manner, full of energy, quick in every movement, fond of 
music, which is shown by his whistling and singing when at 
work or at play. Such a problem may be too diificult for a 


beginner, as it will take closer investigation than some other 
cases, because in this phenomena, the variety is wholly men- 
tal, the difficulty would be in getting facts in regard to the 
mother's mental condition a few months before the birth of 
the children. Her memory may be poor, and her mental im- 
pressions at those periods were not vivid enough to fix them- 
selves in her mind. Some have a poor memory on one line, 
and good upon many others. This is a factor that should not 
be overlooked. As the student progresses, such cases can be 
more easily fathomed. In the language of a well known 
writer: "One case, on any subject, thoroughly studied, is 
worth more as a lesson, than a hundred simply looked at from 

A case like the following will be much easier for the stu- 
dent to begin with. Rev. H. and wife, of K., have dark hair 
and complexion; the first child has red hair and a freckled 
face. The father says that previous to the birth of this child 
his wife continually thought of an esteemed friend, and men^ 
tioned it to her husband; said she could not banish from her 
mind the thought of the red hair and freckles of this friend. 
The second child is very dark, like its parents. 

In the case of a deformity, like the following, it is very 
easy to get facts. A simple case: Mrs. N., of A., was 
standing in the yard; her young husband came up to her, 
with his axe upon his shoulder, and in fun struck a blow into 
the ground, close to her feet. She gave birth to a boy with- 
out toes. The reader says, "He should have known better." 
True! the man was ignorant of its efiPect, and his wife did not 
know how to overcome the consequences, or, more likely, did 
not know that it would result in an injury; but upon the 
state, or the parents of this couple, lies the blame for neglect- 
ing to educate upon this line. 

In case of a deformity, the mother can usually give a 
sufficient reason, unless she has a poor memory. The student 
must not overlook that point. Mental variation being more 
complex, and the element of time having interfered, it vill 


not be so easy to procure the evidence. [This is more fully 
explained in another chapter.] 

It is well known that no two persons of the same ancestry 
are alike in appearance, tastes, desires or ability. 'Tis true, 
there are a few cases where twins resemble each other closely 
while children, but intimate friends never make any mistake 
after the twins have arrived at maturity. The Siamese twins, 
who were connected at the waist, had a slight resemblance in 
facial expression, but differed in taste and desires; they mar- 
ried women who were not alike in disposition. An investiga- 
tion in the case of twins is more intricate than any other 
phenomena, and it was a knotty problem. The deductions 
are given in a chapter on twins. In the investigation of all 
buman phenomena we find that it cannot be accounted for on 
the basis of heredity, and the theory of atavism is too vague 
and cannot be demonstrated. 


If the reader concludes that the cause of varieties is trans- 
cendental, which is, that the many peculiar characters in man- 
kind, the good, the bad, and the indifferent, were created by 
special act of Providence, it will be found that such a theory 
lays the blame for the creation of not only the lame, halt and 
blind, but also the congenital epileptics, the insane, and the 
criminals, upon the Creator. Those who hold such a theory 
must first assign an adequate reason why God has created 
men and women who are detrimental to the welfare of hu- 
manity, a source of anxiety to their friends, and a blot upon 
the face of the earth. Second, they must show that all the 
facts lead to and produce evidence in its favor, and against 
the creation of varieties in any other manner, and the facts 
must harmonize. The first is an assignment of real causes, 
and would be a correct physical theory, because physical 
cause must be the basis of argument from which to draw con- 
clusions. The second would be accepted as a logical de- 
duction. The first line of argument has never been under- 
taken so far as man's moral and mental nature is concerned. 



The well known biologist, Prof. La Marck, undertook to 
prove man's physical line from the basis of the first argument, 
and was thoroughly ridiculed. He gave partly real and 
partly insufficient causes, and did not get credit for any 
ability on that line; "And his attempt to prove physical 
changes through the appetite and habits of animals which 
acted upon their structures, causing a modification of the 
organs, was said to be a failure." This is the opinion of a 
noted biologist. Later investigations tend to the conviction 
that Prof. La Marck overlooked an important factor, viz: The 
effect of climate and food upon the mind or consciousness of 
the individual organism. It is now contended that the in- 
fluence of climate and food with the element of time, does 
change the physical structure, and affects not only man and 
animals, but plantlif e. 

In studying the problem of the cause of varieties, all, 
truths are based upon hypothesis. Reason and consciousness 
must decide that there is a foundation as a basis for investi- 
gation, and all theories should be founded upon facts. It is 
impossible to reason correctly from a false premise. Facts 
are essential to any proper solution. There should be some 
reasonable assurance that that which is called a fact, is a fact, 
before an attempt is made to explain the cause, but it is not 
essential to prove the fact before an attempt is made to give a 
reason for it. 

To illustrate: Take as a study, a criminal whose whole 
ancestry are upright and honorable; the theory assumed, is, 
that the mother's mental condition shaped the brain of that 
criminal, so that he is unable to resist the desire to do wrong. 
It is not necessary that you shall prove the theory before you 
proceed to investigate the cause of his criminal action. It is 
sufficient to know that the individual persists in his crimin- 
ality. In that, you have a basis upon which to rest your hy- 
pothesis. To a perfect and proper judgment in any case, all 
the factors that have a bearing upon the question should be 
considered first. Nor is the gathering of fact^ alone suf- 


ficient. It is easy to string a lot of facts together, if facta 
are furnished, but when an attempt is made to analyze them 
it requires intellectual ability superior to that which the 
average man possesses. The gathering of facts alone does 
not satisfy the scientific thinker. Science demands causes, 
or reasons, why the facts are as they are 

"A proposition with its terms well defined is more than half solved." 

If the proposition is not clearly stated, and there is a su- 
perfluity of words which are generally unintelligible, they are 
apt to mislead, so that its solution is liable to be at fault. It 
might by chance be correct but it would not be safe to rely 
upon it. If you are persistent in your inquiry and investiga- 
tion, where causation can be studied, you will in time arrive 
at a definite conclusion. It is urged that all preconceived 
idq^s be laid aside; examine the facts, make your deductions 
from them, then interpret the facts which have been collected, 
and draw your conclusions. If the conclusions agree with 
your ideas, you have fortified your position with new truths. 
If, upon the contrary, your old ideas are at fault, you will seek 
more evidence until you are thoroughly convinced that your 
conclusions are based upon sound arguments. 

The study of the subject will become more and more in- 
teresting as the student progresses, until the cause of the 
various peculiarities in individuals that one meets, will be as an 
open book. It is hoped that in this work some light may be 
thrown upon the subject of varieties, thus adding to the gen- 
eral knowledge of a question that seems mysterious, and 
which eventually some abler mind may fully elucidate. 

Those who delight to investigate that which is, and 
who are pleased when they have discovered and traced the 
various phenomena, and noted how, through the operation of 
some natural law, all organic beings adapt themselves to their 
environment, will be amply repaid by a careful perusal of 
this work. As the investigation proceeds, it will be surpris- 
ing to find how wide a field is opened to the mental vision of 
the investigator, and, in searching for the truth, he will be 



overcome by a profound conviction that some great overrul- 
ing power is controlling the destiny of the universe, and that 
mankind is under the influence of potencies which are to the 
majority so incomprehensible, but when examined under the 
search-light of reason and common sense, are very plain and 
easily understood. The conclusion to which the study of this 
subject leads, is, that all mental varieties in human nature 
are traceable to two causes; the first is heredity, or, "Similar 
produces Similarity;" the second is heredity's twin and pow- 
erful sister, Maternal Impressions. The law which underlies 
heredity is unquestioned; all scientists agree upon that fact, 
that is to say, they believe heredity governs the physical or 
organic nature, but I have doubts as to its influence upon 
man's mental nature. It has been a subject for a vast amount 
of study, as to why heredity does not always prevail. No 
satisfactory answer can be found in the work of any scientist. 

This work shows that maternal impressions, generally 
known as pre-natal influence, is a more powerful factor in the 
cause of varieties, and, as it were, sets aside the law of 
heredity. When the subject of maternal impression is compre- 
hended, with its good and evil effects upon the life and char- 
acter of mankind, and its study presented in such a manner as 
not to offend the most sensitive, as it is in this work, no intel- 
ligent person will say, "This is too delicate a subject for me." 

By a study of maternal impression, the moral powers of 
posterity can be improved or retarded. It will instruct the 
coming mother as to her ability in that direction, and show 
her that she can, at willy produce offspring who will be a 
blessing to her and to the world. Her duties as wife and 
mother will be seen in a clearer light, and through all, and 
above all, it will redound to the glory of Grod, by the produc- 
tion of an improved race of beings. 

The subject of maternal or pre-natal impression, the 
results of which are commonly known as birth marks, was 
studied by the author from a love of investigation, and to 
acquire a knowledge of a subject that seemqd full of mys- 




teries, with no expectation of adding anything to the general 
knowledge of the question. As has been remarked, the pre- 
sumption was, that it had been thoroughly and exhaustively 
treated by well known and competent scientists of the age. 
But upon an examination of the many voluminous works 
upon kindred subjects, such as "Biology," "Evolution/' 
"Heredity" and "Atavism," as well as many other works that 
have a bearing upon man's descent or ascent from the prim- 
itive stage to the present, it was found that among the many 
writers, no reasons are given, and no logical explanation for 
the cause of varieties. Nor do scientists suggest any plan by 
which a student is enabled to begin an investigation of tho 
cause of the various mental and physical peculiarities, which 
are found in humanity. The question of mental influences, 
with their efiPect upon the human brain structure in its form- 
ative stage, has been lightly treated by a few scientists, and 
unnoticed by the many. 

Where the brain structure has been discussed, it was gen- 
erally in the animal and insect organism, mainly to prove tho 
theory of evolution. The human brain has been ignored, 
except as to its physical structure, and that, merely in its 
relation to, and the bearing it had upon, the question of phys- 
ical evolution, and by anatomists in its relation to diseases. 
Its mentality has not been considered to the extent and in the 
manner it should have been, when man's possibilities, both 
mental and moral, are taken into consideration. 

In all works upon man and his antecedents, biology is the 
most prominent. 'Tis true, that in its fullest sense, the term 
biology includes the mind of man; nevertheless, the fact 
remains that the many peculiar mental varieties found in man 
are not investigated, except in a limited manner, principally 
by the criminologists, and the student is bewildered by a mass 
of scholarly verbiage, which only leads to the physical aspect 
of man, as well as to all other breathing organic life. 

In the following pages, is applied the best efforts of ex- 
perience, and an intelligent explanation of facts, with their 


relation to the phenomena which were supposed to have pro- 
duced the facts. Personal experience as a factor in the eluci- 
dation of the cause of varieties seems to have been over- 
looked, or is not comprehended by scientific writers, and they 
have been unable to fathom the subject. In this work the 
subject has been treated in a simple manner, to enable any 
person who could not grasp the ideas as expounded by pro- 
found scholars, to arise from the study of the subject as here 
presented, with a feeling that some knowledge had been 
gained by its perusal. 

To those who intend taking a scientific course in biology 
it will be of value, because of the many ideas given here, 
which will enable the student to begin a line of investigation. 
It is next to impossible to find any starting point in the works 
of the leading scientists. 

The reasons which led to my conclusions are given, and 
stated so plainly, that any person having the ability to solve 
a simple problem cannot be misled. Its study will enable 
them to solve other problems which may be observed. New 
facts will be found, that are within the grasp of the average 
mentality. By new facts, is meant, new to the masses, and 
many of them new in the sense that scientists have either 
failed to recognize them, or have overlooked them entirely. 

The critic wh6 denies the premise and conclusions at 
which I have arrived in this work, should in answer show 
that bodily defects, such as birth marks which are visible, 
are the product of a common natural cause, over which the 
mother has no control; then show why each case of birth 
mark is different from every other case; that is to say, no 
two persons were ever found who were bom defective, and 
were alike in their deformity; also show why they were 

It is hoped that the study of this work will be a benefit 
to the coming generation of fathers and mothers, and thus 
assist in uplifting humanity by putting it upon a higher 
plane of mentality. 

r ' 




"That suoh verbal hocus-pocus should be received as science, will one day be 
regarded as evidence of the low state of intelliffence in the nineteenth century.** 

In the study of the organic part of man and animals, man's 
mentality should be included. So far but very little has been 
written in which the mind of man has been taken into con- 
sideration. One writer, Dr. Romanes, published a volumin- 
ous work, entitled, "The Mind of Man;" but it would puzzle 
the wisest to find anything that would lead to a solution of 
the cause of the various mentalities in mankind — nothing can 
be found on that line. All biological writers discuss the 
brain formation; the anatomical differences in the structure 
of the brain of man and the lower species of creation have 
been thoroughly elaborated. Scientists have heaped up great 
stores of facts and collected data; piled up documents by the 
score, then shoveled them together in thick volumes, prefaced 
by many pages of bibliography, interspersed with a mass of 
verbiage, and each paragraph floating upon a stream of notes. 
Often the notes are in a dead language, or in some foreign 
tonguQ which the reader does not understand. This wearies 
the student and has a tendency to make him tired of the 
whole subject, when the object should be, not to see how large 
a book can be made, but to make a book that will be interest- 
ing and profitable to the one who is studying the subject. 
Every student of scientific literature has been bothered at 
times trying to find out what the writer of the book which he 

W ■: 





is studying means. If he should ask the author, "What did 
you mean when you wrote that sentence, paragraph, or page?" 
The answer would be, in many cases, "When I wrote that^ 
there were two who knew all about it, God and I; now God 
alone knows." The reader is bewildered, and the student's 
time and energy is wasted to find out what God alone knows. 

Marie Correlli, in "Ardath," says: "To my mind, science 
somewhat resembles a straight line, drawn clear across the 
country, but leading, alas! to an ocean wherein all land-marks 
are lost and swallowed up in blankness! Over and over again, 
the human race has trodden the same pathway of research; 
over and over again, has it stood bewildered and baffled on 
the shores of the same vast sea. The most marvelous discov- 
eries are, after all, mere child's play, compared to the tre- 
mendous secrets that must forever remain concealed. We die 
in almost as much ignorance as we were bom." 

Investigators who are presumed to be authority upon 
man's antecedents, have been compelled to invent theories 
and to assume an hypothesis in which the theories are con- 
tradictory. Is the statement warranted, when it is said that 
Darwin's "Gemmules" and his "Multicellar Organisms,'^ 
Spencer's "Physiological Units," Weismann's ^*Germ Plasms," 
with his "Ids" and "Hants," his "Ohromozones" and "Chro- 
matic Granules," and Haeckel's "Plastitudes," all belong to 
the realm of the anatomist, and are of slight value in the 
study of the cause of the mental peculiarities of mankind. 
No rational theory has been formulated that will stand the 
test of logical investigation. 

Dr. Strahan says: "Unfortunately for science, Darwin's 
theory of "Gemmules" is but a theory; of these potent gem- 
mules there is absolutely nothing known — it is not even 
proven that they exist. It is the ingenious effort of a great 
mind to fathom what at present seems to be unfathomable." 
Darwin's "Natural Selection" is by far the most plausible 
argument, as to the cause of the physical variation in animal 



It may be clmrged that the theory of maternal impression 
is also an invention. Not so! As it has been known for a long 
time that the mother's mentality can and does disarrange 
particles of flesh and blood, which are known as birth-marks. 
It is as indisputable as the laws of gravitation. 

Referring to Natural Selection, that theory depends upon: 
First, that the strongest and handsomest males are selected; 
second, that the females in birds, fishes and animals, as well 
as in mankind, have the power to discern color, strength, 
beauty and voice, which enables them to choose the proper 
male to produce a higher and better species. Natural selec- 
tion implies, that back of all other laws which govern repro- 
duction, is a fundamental principle which is guiding the 
whole, and the ultimate object is the production of a superior 
race. The conclusions drawn from Prof. Darwin's argument 
must be, that it is all done by a conscious guiding hand, and 
the result, Evolution. 

But what becomes of Mr. Darwin's other theory, that 
nature, if left to itself, reverts to its original type, viz: **Re- 
version to Type." In Natural Selection, Prof. Darwin says: 
"When males are provided with weapons which females do 
not possess, they are for fighting with other males of the 
same species, and these weapons are acquired through natural 
selection." He also says: "Undoubtedly the first spike-horn 
buck was an accidental freak of nature; they are crowding the 
antlered buck out of the habitat." We stop to inquire, Does 
nature do anything accidentally? 

Mr. Herbert Spencer, speaking of the Irish and German 
immigrants, whose progeny rapidly assume the prevailing 
type, says: "That spontaneous variation, increased by natural 
selection, can h::ve produced this eflFect, is going too far. 
• • . . There is no escaping the conclusion, that physical 
and social conditions have modified function and structure." 
(See case of the Italian family, which, out of ten children, had 
eight who looked like Grermans.) 

In Mr. Spencer's argument is an admission that the en- 


vironment of the mother has affected the stiilcture of her off- 
spring. If this is denied, then the theory of evolution re- 
ceives a back-set. 

In Mr. Spencer's theory of Physiological Units, he consid- 
ers, "That the whole organism is composed of these units, 
alike in kind, and that the germ-cells contain small groups of 

them All these units are capable of arranging 

themselves in a variety of ways But it is done 

under the directing influence of the whole. The units are 
forced to arrange themselves in just such a way as is neces- 
sary for the perfection of the whole." (What is it that di- 
rects them when there is a monstrosity, and it is not a perfect 
whole?) Mr. Spencer also says: "It seems difficult to believe 
that this can be so, but we know it is so It is in- 
sufficient to interpret heredity But it has the 

merit of having utilized the smallest particle of the organ- 

This is scientific biology with a vengeance, and reminds 
one of the carpenter, who, in building a house, hit upon the* 
plan of filling the spaces between the joists with the sawdust 
and chips, and was elated over the idea that he had not 
wasted any material; he had found a place for it all. 

It is noticeable in Mr. Spencer's writings, as well as in 
many others, that the evidence which he produces is always 
from some one else, and the inference is that he has not made 
any personal investigations. Prof. Weismann is considered 
by a very few an authority upon hereditary transmission. 
His conclusions are: First — The immortality of unicellar 
organisms and reproductive cells of multicellar organisms. . 
. . . Second — The theory of the germ-plasm continuity is 
based upon the transferring of a substance from one genera- 
tion to another, which contains a chemical, and above all 

molecular constitution called germ-plasm Third 

— All parts of the organism are determined from the germ 

onwards Fourth — The individual is determined, 

at the time of fertilization Fifth — That degener- 



ation of all kinds and degrees, depend upon the complicated 

structure of tKe germ-plasm And, That heredity 

depends upon the presence of this definite substance, germ- 
plasm." In the introduction to the germ-plasm theory, Prof. 
Weii^ann says: "This Grerm-Plasm, or *Ids' can never be 
formed anew; it can only grow, multiply, and be transmitted 
from one generation to another I doubt the the- 
ory of transmission of variations acquired by the body, and 
that it does not occur." 

Then what becomes of the evolution theory? It looks as 
though the average scientist does not consider whether the 
assumption of his theory is possible, logically. He sees that 
a certain hypothesis is positively necess^-ry to complete his 
theory, and formulates a scheme, without regard to any facts 
upon which to base it. Prof. Weismann produces no facts 
upon which to base^his theory of the immortality of the Germ 
Plasm, or that they are never renewed; they can only grow 
and multiply. The conclusions of Mr. Weismann are based 
upon insufficient evidence; in fact, there is no evidence at all, 
he merely assumes. I have not found a student of Weismann 
who understands his theories. If one formulates a premise 
to suit his own ideas, the conclusions will be apt to agree with 
some preconceived notions, which may be uppermost in his 
mind at the time. 

To illustrate: A child is bom with a club-foot. The 
father is a believer in Weismann's theory of "Ids" and 
"Idants." He makes his own premise, which is: That some 
unknown ancestor, whom he has never seen or heard of, must 
have had a club-foot; if not, where did the ids which formed 
the club-foot of his child come from? and which his author- 
ity, Weismann, asserts are immortal and never change; they 
grow and multiply. As no other cause is found, the con- 
clusion is, atavism and heredity is the cause of the club-foot 
in his child. 

The idea that the first malformation of any kind, when it 
appeared, could not have bee^n in existence previously, does not 

^ t*»1 



occuT to this, Weismannist. But the answer comes, yes! those 
**ids*' were iu existence from the dawn of mankind. That 
answer rests upon supernatural causes, which have no standing 
in science, and are not debatable. Such a concluson is based 
upon a premise formed upon a theory which is unexplainable; 
grounded in mysticism; it is literally valueless to mankind, as 
it does nothing toward elevating the race; . takes up the 
time that could be devoted to something useful, and places 
the blame for all imperfections upon the Creator of the uni- 
YGree. The question that should occupy the mind of the stu- 
dent of science is. What can I learn out of the book of nature 
to assist me in making the world wiser and better? What 
can be done for posterity, is of more value than what ancestry 
has done for the world. The terms evolution, environment, 
natural selection, heredity, atavism, and a host of others, are 
current, their significance doubtful, all interpretc^tion of fact 
cojitains a modicum of truth as well as errors. Jordan says, 
"Evolution needs a special definition every time it is used." 
The term environment, as used by the biologist, has a definite 
meaning, and is limited, but to the general reader it has a 
fuller, broader meaning; it includes the mental and moral 
nature, as well as the surroundings of the individual. The 
term atavism is of doubtful utility. The theory is based 
ux>on say-so: what somebody said, as for instance, "I heard 
my father say, that his grandfather was, or did, thus and so.'' 
Not a particle of evidence can be produced in its support, and 
the atavistic conclusion is based upon insufficint evidence. 
As no satisfactory answer could be given, the word Atavism 
was coinedi As has been remarked, "It is often used to cover 
up ignorance of all previous conditions." 





"Heredity is the stamp of blood relationship." 

There are three factors th^t form the characteristics which 
are found in all human beings. First — Heredity, which 
controls the organism. Second — Environment, which is in i 
its essence, education; it governs and moulds heredity's twin 
sister. Maternal impression, that constitutes the thiM factor. 

In the study of the cause of mental variation in man, it 
will be neccessary to include heredity, and there must be a 
clear understanding as to the term, or what is meant by he- 
redity. So far, there is no positive conclusion in regard to • 
it, and we produce in evidence a few ideas of leading scien- 
tists upon the subject, including atavism, as it is understood. 

"The heredity theory of the future must rest upon a far 
more exact knowledge than we enjoy at present." — Prof. 

"Any attempt to work out a theory of heredity in detail 
may appear premature and almost presumptuous." — Prof. 

"In Abnormal Man," by the United States Bureau of 
Education, is found some reference to heredity; it says: 
Heredity is often a name to cover up ignorance of all early 
conditions," .... and "Heredity is an overworked jade, too 
often driven in double harness with a hobby." 

The term heredity is used to apply to all living creatures, 


but in this work it will be restricted to and refer to mankind 
only, as man is the subject of discussion; the term biology, if 
used, will also be in the same restricted sense. 

In the various works upon heredity, all living organisms 
can be studied, from the atom or protoplasm, up to man. 
In none of them is there any careful study of man's mentality, 
which is a factor and should be considered in the investiga- 
tion of hereditary transmission. Scientists have been look- 
ing solely at the organic or physical nature of man as it is 
included in all creatures, and they have given a reason for 
the varieties in man's acquired character, by charging it to 
some long-forgotten predecessor, and called it Atavism. 

Heredity is defined as the law of "Like producing Like;" 
when analyzed it is found that it is not a law, it is the result 
of some law. The law, so-called, is the cause; heredity the 
eflPect. This may seem to some hypercritical, but it is a cor- 
rect statement. The term is used here, in its common 
acceptation. By virtue of that law, the conjunction of a male 
and female of the same species will produce another being, 
having like form and quality, who will be able to do its part 
in the further propagation of the species, and its progress to 
a higher standard is called Evolution. "In what passes for 
the doctrine of evolution there is a mixture of science and 
speculation, yet it is customary to serve it all up together, so 
that hungry souls must needs take all or none." 

Extravagant evolutionism has gone on from the physical 
theory of life to pose as a metaphysical theory, and is thus 
commented upon by the editor of The New York Observer 
(Presbyterian), who calls it Encyclopaedic Evolutionism: 
"The idea is extended to human customs, morals and man- 
ners, to literature in general, to religion itself, to the growth 
of states and social sovereignties. Everything in this view 

has grown from something that was lesser than it 

All this is evolution gone clean daft It tickles the 

fancy of a Spencer to reduce everything to one philosophic 
principle. .... All morals, all manners, all doxies, laid 


upon the bed of evolutionary theory, to be dropped oflp or 
drawn out to fit the demand." 

Before an attempt is made to investigate maternal im- 
pressions, it will be necessary to examine the question of 
heredity and its kindred sjubject, atavism, as it is presented 
by its advocates, and, if possible, clear away the cloud that 
will obscure the mental vision of those who are looking to 
scientists in vain for any positive evidence in regard to the 
influence of heredity or atavism upon the mental character- 
istics of mankind. In its study, do not accept the simple 
assertion of any man, solely because other men look upon him 
as authority, particularly when it is admitted that the facts 
are unknowable. "Scientific thought is at times very one- 
sided." To illustrate: Aristotle taught tha^t the breath of 
man entered the heart; that the back of the head was empty; 
that he had but eight ribs. Like some modern philosophers, 
he was wrong in his conclusions. In the study of heredity, 
one is compelled to admit that there Is nothing upon which 
to base any conclusions. Life and matter is all that can be 
claimed for it; the various combinations cannot be attributed 
to it, and the problem of the improvement of the race cannot 
be solved upon the theory of heredity, as that theory holds, 
that the progeny must be like one or the other of its parents. 

Scientists say there are causes at work with heredity, 
which are to them unknown. They give no clue, nor do they 
hint at any idea from which the student can begin to investi- 
gate. Sedgwick, in trying to find a good reason for the ex- 
ceptions in heredity, said: "In the case of two deaf mutes, 
who produced normal children (mark the logic), heredity 
acquired such a power that it destroyed itself." This we 
should call pure guess work; it is far from being scientific. 
Virey says: "Moral qualities of the body are transmissible 
through heredity, but the moral qualities of the soul are not." 
This seems to be a vague proposition, and can only be char- 
acterized as pure assumption. Buckle says: "We often hear 
of hereditary talents, hereditary vices and hereditary virtues, 


but whoever will critically examine the evidence, will find no 
proof of their existence." 

It is said that heat and cold, as well as food, seems to 
change the physical characteristics of certain animals, and 
the element of time is of great importance in heredity, which 
is said to be governed or changed by physical and climatic 
circumstances surrounding the race. These factors produce 
a mental twist, influenced by habits of ancestry, viz: Their 
taste and action, then changed and swayed by their geograph- 
ical situation, and when the element of time is considered, 
the mental twist becomes fixed; registered, as it were, in the 
brain structure. If the indentations and undulations made 
by the stream of time, passing through the brain of centuries 
could be traced, it would be seen how, in this sense, heredity 
is arbitrary. But this view of heredity only applies to races, 
or nations, and not to individual variations. 

In regard to the mental variations in mankind the scien- 
tists are profoundly silent. Why these variations, if heredity 
be fixed and unalterable? It is to them a mysterious subject. 
One says, "There must be . some transcendental agency at 
work to counteract or change the law of heredity." That is 
a cheap and easy way to become famous among the many 
superficial thinkers, who lack the power of discernment. 
When a man takes the stand above noted, he has become 
"Scientifically superstitious," and looks at dogmas, systems, 
and speculations, as absolute truths. He cannot be working 
upon any scientific basis, and the danger to the student is, 
that he may accept as truth, unconsciously, that which is 
merely conjecture, and which is none the less speculation, 
because carried on by professed scientists. 

The law which governs reproduction. Prof. Darwin calls 
"The fixed laws of heredity." He says "Heredity produces 
an exact copy of the parent in the child." The next sentence 
makes the statement ambiguous: "In the child there is never 
a precise re-duplication." 

In his summary he says: "Many of the views are highly 


si)eculative, and some no doubt will prove erroneous. Many 
facts in hereditary descent, are wholly inexplicable by my 
hypothesis." A work upon Descent and Darwinism, by Prof. 
Schmidt, of Strasburg, Germany, says: **Darwin has set up 
a provisional hypothesis. 'That in every elementary portion 
of organism, innumerable gemmules are produced which are 
hoarded up, in every ovum, in every sperm corpuscle, and 
might remain latent during hundreds of generations, and only 
then exhibit their powers in reversion.' " The idea that a 
peculiar trait in an individual, was lost or latent through 
hundreds of generations, then reappearing, and calling it her- 
editary or atavistic, is so undemonstrable, that it is surpris- 
ing it should be called scientific. "Darwin's theory, from pre- 
senting so many vulnerable points, is always in jeopardy." 

It is said that Mr. Darwin never made any dogmatic asser- 
tion, but what would the following be called, if asserted by 
some other person? "Man is descended from some less highly 
organized . form. The ground upon which this conclusion 
rests will never be shaken,'^ 

Herbert Spencer says: "Heredity is assumed 

But, as generally understood, it is universal It is not 

universally admitted that peculiarities are inherited 

There is a doubt as to whether heredity is transmitted. . . 
. . A positive explanation is not to be expected in the pre- 
sent state of biology." 

Prof. Lucas says: "Side by side with heredity which main- 
tains types, we ought to admit a special force [which he does 
not attempt to explain, he simply calls it] 'Innateness which 
diversifies type.' " 

Dr. Galton says: "There is very little direct evidence of 
the influence of heredity in the course of a single generation, 
if the phrase 'Acquired Faculties' is used strictly, the few 
cases cannot be accepted as positive. .... My own data is 
too lax to go upon The whole theory is too uncer- 
tain to be accepted as fact It is excellent material for 

mathematical formula, .... But I am unable to make it 


intelligible to the masses." And tacitly admits that all spec- 
ulation in regard to Heredity, Atavism, and Darwin's Pan- 
gensis, is not a positive test, it was no doubt not very clear to 
Mr. Galton himself. He says further: "Where the mind's 
activity takes a larger part, heredity is found to lose force and 
constancy of action." 

Papillion says: "Cases of heredity can never be anything 
more than exceptions, as compared with the cases that make 

against it Let us believe in heredity in so far as it 

may be the means of improvement, but refuse assent when 

there is claimed for it despotic power Not a single 

one of the following great thinkers in whose line, whether 
ascending or descending, are their high capacities perpetuated: 
Newton, Spinoza, Leibnitz, Diderot, Hume, Kant, or JeoflFrey. 

They had neither posterity or ancestry By what right, 

then, shall any man set up heredity as a general law of devel- 
opment of intellectual activity? Heredity does not exert an 
exclusive and continuous influence It is well estab- 
lished, that the children, of geniuses, are very often very in- 
ferior men." 

"The Jukes," a book containing the history of a lewd 
woman in the state of New York, whose many descendents, 
were criminals and paupers, in discussing heredity, says: 
"The characters of Ada and Bell, are not reproduced as we 
might expect, if heredity was the controlling influence. . . 
. . Heredity does not always pass on." 

De Quatrefagas says: "It is not resemblances existing be- 
tween the members of one family that perplex the philoso- 
pher; all agree in referring them to heredity; .... the 
problem lies in the differences, more especially in the shades 
which constitute the individual traits that distinguish fathet 
from son, or brother from brother." The problem is to ac- 
count for the diversity of character, without forgetting its 
unity of origin. 

Romanes says: "Other causes are at work with heredity; 
we do not know what they are The various species 


originated, we know not how I assume the doctrine 

of descent, . . • , as regards the whole of organic nature, 
.... with one exception, man, .... and I assume even 
in the case of man, so far as his bodily organization is con- 
cerned It is only in reference to his mind that I ex- 
cept, and I make this only in deference to the opinion of 
that small minority of evolutionists who still maintain, . . 
. . and I accept the theory of descent as to the physical 
part of man, but they say they have cogent evidence that it 

fails to account for his mental condition The process 

of organic and mental evolution has been continuous through- 
out the whole region of life and mind, .... with the one 
exception, the mind of man." Linneaus, Buffin, Lamark,. 
Miller, Cuvier, Geoffrey, Humboldt, all arrive at the same 
conclusion: That "All men belong to the same species, and 
that there is but one species of man." 

Prof. Le Conte says: "Herpdity is based upon a funda- 
mental law, which seems infallible, viz: Like begets Like. . . 
. . This law is sure It is the first great law of re- 
production that the offspring tends to resemble its parent 

more closely than anything else The various species 

originated, presumably by direct creative act of Deity. . . 
. . While it is probable, nay, almost certain, that all animals 
had a common origin, we cannot trace the great departments 

of homology to that common origin As to the truth 

of evolution, concerning which there is no difference of 
opinion among thinkers." 

If Prof. Le Conte means that all thinkers believe in a law 
.of progress up to a certain limit, he is on safe and tenable 
ground. We believe that the important factor in the evolu- 
tion or development of mankind — the basic principle of varia- 
tion — is the state of the mother's mind previous to the birth 
of her offspring. 

Prof. Drummond, in a chapter on degeneration, comes to 
the conclusion, That nature does not progress, but is inclined 
to a retrograde movement, reversion to type. He gets this 



idea from Darwin. There are scientists who do not stop at 
the presumed natural limit of any species; they take a low 
order of organic beings to prove the law of evolution, and 
when they reach the physically perfect human, some of them 

wander into the spiritual, and call it science A better 

name for it would be. Scholastic rope dancing; Verbal dust, 
with no clear ideas from which to draw conclusions. "A 
mere figment of the intellect." 

, "To find analogies between the processes of nature, and 
the supposed future of man, and present them as a proof of 
the latter, is a trick packed with baneful results to the mind 
of man." 

With intellectual necromacy, and preconceived transcend- 
ental ideas they have blinded their judgment, which has be- 
come formulated, and its inner meanings lost. The problem 
ever present with the scientist, is in regard to the origin of 
man; and a still deeper one, is to find the origin of the mind 
of man; to find, as it were, its protoplasm; and after that is 
found, there comes a still moire diflScult and unknowable 
problem. That of life in the physical organism, and the an- 
swer to one is the answer to all. It always must be: We do 
not know. A knowledge of the problem of life is not essen- 
tial in the development of mankind. It is not a factor which 
must be discovered before man can arrive at the high moral 
and physical standard which the Creator has undoubtedly 
set for him to attain. If it were necessary there can be no 
doubt that God would have revealed it ere this. Man's 
whole duty is to use the means at his command, and which 
he is conscious of, to enable him to fulfill his destiny; it is for 
each one to do his share in the elevation and improvement of 

But to return to the subject of heredity. If heredity is 
such an all-powerful factor, as some scientists would have us 
believe, and atavisqi — traits from unknown ancestors — is an 
important adjunct, it should have made its appearance in 
some of the old families, but its influence is not recognized 


to any extent in this day and age. Some of the descendents 
should return to the simplicity, and sturdy manhood of their 
puritan fathers, and reproduce the sterling integrity, Chris- 
tian fortitude, and forbearance of their progenitors. - There 
is not a particle of evidence that can be relied upon, in any 
work of all the great thinkers of this age, which claims to 
have any proof as to the validity of heredity. This is not a 
denial of heredity, it is only a statement of the fact. That no 
evidence can be found in all the voluminous works of the 
leading scientists, as to the influence of heredity upon the 
mind of man. There are assumptions but no proofs. Scien- 
tists, in discussing heredity, ascribe all of the so-called 
**freak8 of nature;" the likes and dislikes; all pecularities 
found in humanity; all the bad traits, as well as the good 
characters; all the varied phases of mankind, which are not 
found in the parents, to some unknown cause, and they assert 
that it comes from some long-forgotten, and utterly unknown 
progenitor; some great-great-great-great-grandfather; and the 
term atavism is also an excuse for ignorance of early condi- 
tions. It will not do to flourish such vague generalities, and 
attempt to pass them oflP as scientific explanations. With 
atavism, the scientist is groping in the dim and shadowy past, 
where no land-mark or data is preserved, and where no record 
can be found. As no cause could be found, the eflfect was 
called atavism, it was the only outlet, and the scientist as- 
sumed what no seeker after the truth should do, with "Hux- 
ley's Guidipg Rule" ringing in his ears. When one has at- 
tempted to prove atavism, by exploring the record of any 
individual's fore-fathers, and accepts what little grain of facts 
which could be found, he must be groping in the dark, the 
facts must necessarily be limited, because the persons to 
whom he looks for facts, are unable to give any positive evi- 
dence. Is it possible for any one to give any proof ^ which is 
demonstrable, as to the cause of the peculiarities of his grand 
or great-grand parents, except from hearsay, which could not 
be relied upon. Even if the witness knew them when living, it 




would be nothing more than hearsay, therefore very we&ik and 

insu£Scient evidence. Although the evidence may, in a gen- 
eral manner be correct, that is, a statement in regard to 
some mental or physical characteristic, may be accurate, such 
a statement does not explain the origin of the modification. It 
only emphasizes a fact. Ellis, in "The Criminal," says: "I 
doubt whether we can attribute criminality to atavism; it does 
not pass on. and when we consider the facts of heredity and 
atavism, we are no longer on safe and simple ground," 

In all biographical sketches the reader is treated to a his- 
tory of the grandparents and other more remote ancestors; 
then the parents^ characteristics are given in detail, especially 
the mental qualities, and they are subject to the whim of the 
compiler. Next we are called upon to notice how accurately 
nature has reproduced certain traits, then the environment, 
and the school, with the teachers, the surroundings of the 
home life, as well as the religious atmosphere which influ- 
enced the subject of the sketch. An argument can be drawn 
from these presumed facts, to prove atavism. Scientists tell 
us that heredity, atavism, and environment are the master 
forces of the organic world. If, by the term environment is 
included the senses and their influences upon the individual 
organism, through its mentality, the statement may be ac- 
cepted. In all articles upon environment, the inference is 
that the surroundings of the individual organism after birth, 
^re meant, and in no case do they refer to the influence of the 
mother's mental condition, as modifying the structure of the 
individual before birth. The professional scientist's argu- 
ment calls attention to the fact that animals, fishes, insects, 
in fact all animate organisms, change their color according to 
their environment, as, for instance, the white of the polar 
bear, the yellow of the lion, the change in color of fishes. 
Innumerable cases can be cited in its support. Such argu- 
ments would prove to the superficial thinker that environment 
was the controlling factor. A closer reasoning will show that 
the organism must have been conscious of the change, and its 


environment acted upon its senses; it then conformed itself to 
its surroundings, so that in the last analysis it is found that 
the senses or mind is the most powerful factor; if it were not 
conscious of its surroundings there could have been no change 
in its nature or its color; it would remain unaltered like the 
jiebble upon the sand. 

The student must brush aside the mist of doubt that will, 
encompass his min^ upon these subjects, or he will become 
confused before he can make a careful study of maternal im- 
pressions. The many conflicting statements of the scientists 
should be carefully weighed, and, if faulty, laid aside. Ac- 
cept no man's dictum or dogmatic assertion! Demand facts! 
If they cannot be produced, then insist upon a logical theory 
sustained by facts bearing upon the hypothesis. Not much 
attention has been paid by scientists to maternal impressions 
as a factor in the "Origin of Species." Man has been studied 
on the line of the evolution of the brain substance. The 
mental characteristics of the mother should have been investi- 
gated while she was going through the process of becoming 
a mother. 

A careful investigation of the various phenomena that can 
be found in all communities, and which no thoughtful ob- 
server can fail to see, will remove much that looks mysterious 
to those who have never considered the overpowering influ- 
ence that is exerted by mind over matter, under the condi- 
tions which are to be investigated in this work. In regard to 
the influence of mind over the bodily functions and processes, 
no psychological fact is better established than the existence 
of such an influence. Every organ has its representative in 
the brain, each nerve, with its many fibres, is related to a 
function — talking, walking, laughing and crying, digesting 
or perspiring — all are affected through the brain, so that 
mental influence is a factor which must be considered, when 
investigating any problem in the cause of varieties. 

The ideas here presented may be called radical, but it is 
advance thought upon any line, which is able to enlighten the 




student, and if the advanced ideas are logical, the eflPect is to 
create a desire for further investigation. That always leads 
to a better understanding. Theories and facts are constantly 
put to the test of truth, and if the facts and theories do not 
agree, the theories must go to the wall. Old opinions should 
be reviewed, and those which do not stand the test of truth, 
given up and new ones accepted. "When a truth is taken in 
exchange for an error, a fact for a falsehood, there is always 
an advance." 

The most important question to the student is not whether 
evolution or heredity is a fact, but how, and in what manner 
did the various deviations in man occur, and what influence 
do they have upon his character. It makes no diflference 
whether it is called heredity, or some other term; whether 
the transmission is direct or indirect. Too much time is 
wasted in regard to the terms or the exact process. It is the 
cause we are after; that concerns mankind more than all other 
unsolved problems, because it underlies man's entire char- 
acter, and its solution is essential to the welfare and good 
order of society. 





"Hence, Jacob studied all the laws, 
To see if he could learn t)le cause; 
That on the calves would put the spots, 
The ringrs, and stripes, and streaks and dots.'' 

Before a clear idea can be had in regard to the claims 
which are advanced for the widely accepted theory of heredity, 
it will be necessary to examine the subject of "Reversion to 
Type," advanced by Prof. Darwin and accepted by all biolo- 
gists. I have so far found none who oppose it. The reader 
is invited to a logical examination of the question. 

The law of reversion to type is. That the appearance of 
characteristics which existed in remote ancestors, traits which 
are of a lower order, that are absent in the immediate ances- 
tor, are caused by a law of nature, which Mr. Darwin called 
"Reversion to Type," and through a series of experiments 
gave the result to the world. • His conclusions briefly stated, 
are: That nature, if left to itself with no attempt to improve 
or assist it, will revert to its original type. To demonstrate it, 
a lot of finely bred pigeons were placed upon a distant island, 
after ten years they were all merged into the common blue 
pigeons. Presumably pigeons were used in the experiment, as 
they do not mix easily; their nature is monogamatic, that is, 
mate for life and only one mate. A well known writer says: 
"Reversion to type leads backward to the cave dweller, living 
in his cavern, splitting the leg-bones of his victim, to extract 
the marrow for his feast." 



r^'^'- : 


It is difficult to understand how the law of reversion to 
tjrpe can be reconciled with the theory of natural selection, 
which is also an idea of Prof. Darwin. The argument in 
favor of natural selection is, that nature, through a process of 
selection, has preserved those individuals who were superior 
in physique, as well as other attributes, which were evolved 
by the process of natural selection — "Survival of the Fittest." 
The fittest ones came from a lower, up to a higher and more 
perfect species. That nature, through a careful selection of 
progenitors evolved a superior race. This idea is merged 
into the term evolution. Prof. Darwin says: "Natural se- 
lection will never produce in a being, any structure more in- 
jurious than beneficial to that being, for natural selection acts 
solely for the good of each." Prof. Paley says: "No organ 
will be formed for the purpose of causing pain to its posses- 
sor." Darwin shows further, that the natural instincts in 
birds and animals, appear at the proper time and overcome 
instincts which were all-powerful at another time. He illus- 
trates it by citing the fact, that when the time arrives for 
birds to migrate, they are so strongly impelled that the 
mother bird will leave her brood to perish in the nest. Mr. 
Darwin accepts the migratory instinct, as a link in the chain 
of evidence by which to prove natural selection. He says fur- 
ther, "Considered literally, natural selection is a, false term." 
We contend that the migratory instinct simply asserts a self- 
evident fact, that certain impulses are stronger at some times 
than at others, which is indisputable, but the question arises, is 
it sufficient to prove natural selection ? A man always follows 
the strongest impulse; this will at times prompt him to do noble 
acts, but in our present social conditions, it frequently leads 
him to gratify his selfish desires at the expense of others. 
The views of Prof. Darwin may be correct, but whether they 
are or are not, the one who doubts has the right to investigate 
the subject, and treating the doubter to sarcasm does not sat- 
isfy, or answer any question. The process of evolution, in its 
broadest sense, has never been proven. 




**It is tbe baldest of all philosophies which have sprung up in our world." 


Sir Geo. Mivart says: '*The Darwinian theory is untenable, 
upon Spontaneous Germination and Transmutation of Spe- 
cies, .... hangs all the law and the prophets of evolution 
— it is a puerile hypothesis. Noras natural selection the 
origin of species." 

Prof. Tyndall says: "Those who hold the doctrine of evo- 
lution are by no means ignorant of the uncertainty of their 
data, and they only yield a provisional assent." 

Wallace's argument, as to the underrated powers of natural 
selection, is too obtuse to admit of producing in this work. 
How the law of reversion to type can be reconciled with the 
theory of natural selection is not clear. For the present the 
question of reversion to type, will be considered, and its rela- 
tion to man's moral nature. Does man display in any of his 
attributes, reversion to type, that is, to savage nature, and if 
so, why does the law of progression, natural selection or evo- 
lution, fail in mankind? 

It is claimed by evolutionists that the law of progress is 
infallible in all other organized matter. Is man reverting to 
type because he is ignorantly or unconsciously disobeying the 
laws which govern all animate nature, thus assisting, as it 
were, the law of reversion to type, and becoming degenerate? 
If this is answered in the affirmative, the question arises, 
Why does nature assist animals to progress, presuming Prof. 
Darwin's theory of natural selection to be correct, and does 
not assist mankind? The argument needs bracing up on this 

That all mankind is subject to the law of reversion to type, 
there can be no doubt. Unless man labors for that which is 
best and noblest in him, with an intelligent conception of 
God's law and an earnest desire to do His will by living up 
to the requirement of the fundamental laws of creation, he 
will eventually revert to the barbaric type of his remote 
ancestors. How can mankind counteract or overcome the 


law of reversion to type? We answer, by the study of, and 
the intelligent comprehension of another more powerful 
natural law, which governs reproduction, and through which 
all human nature can be improved, viz: Maternal Impressions. 

The eflPect of. the natural law of progress upon humankind 
is perceptible in its rise from barbarism, and in its advance- 
ment from period to period, until what is called a higher 
civilization has taught the mothers how to interfere with that 
natural law, and at the same time, civilization has neglected 
to teach the danger of such interference, which assists the^ 
other universal law, reversion to type. Civilization has also 
failed to teach that such interference is immoral — immoral 
because it is contrary to the divine law, "Be fruitful and 
multiply." That is just what the majority do not wish to do 
— multiply — so that the race of man has only in part reached 
the high standard which it could occupy. We say in part, 
for it is fair to presume that all men could have attained the 
highest standard, through a knowledge of God's law of pro- 
gress. This is shown in the improvement of our domestic 
animals, by a knowledge of results and an intelligent con- 
ception of the cause. The stock breeder has overcome the 
law of reversion to type to a great extent in applying another 
natural law, in the selection of sound progenitors, and through 
his eflForts, working in harmony with the law of progress gov- 
erning such cases, he has been able to evolve a higher order 
of animal. A man may be entirely ignorant and unconscious 
of the law of reversion to type, or evolution, but he makes 
the best use he can of the knowledge he has acquired, through 
which he is able to evolve a more perfect animal. His tech- 
nical ignorance of natural law does not prevent its fulfill- 
ment; as he has assisted nature, the result is improved stock. 

All eflForts which are put forth by the many educators, and 
the endeavors which society is instinctively making, individ- 
ually and collectively, to elevate the morals of its citizens, are 
based upon that natural law of progress. It is also seen in 
the attempt to overcome the law of reversion to type, by 


sequestering that class who are injurious to the good order of 
society; and the question has been argued at various prison 
congresses and by criminologists, whether it would not be ad- 
visable to hold in subjection all such as are born criminals, 
and through such sequestration prevent the reproduction 
of any more of those who are predisposed to crime. If crim- 
inals were only produced by criminals, and imbeciles by the 
insane, it might be a wise measure. But the fact is, that 
many good parents — in the sense that they are morally and 
physically good — bring forth children who are criminal and 
imbecile, which proves that the inciting cause of the birth of 
congenital criminals is not attributable to heredity, and some 
other factor must be found before a complete remedy for the 
eradication of degeneracy will be effective. Judging by the 
present outlook, with the crowded condition of the prisons 
and asylums, all efforts in behalf of good morals are lacking 
in a complete knowledge necessary to enable mankind to 
counteract the law of reversion to type. That such knowl- 
edge is lacking is shown by the fact that the masses are not 
advancing to a higher plane of mental and moral vigor, on 
the contrary, are degenerating. This is proven by the great 
increase of crime and immorality, and in the accessions to the 
ranks of mental deformities, the insane, the imbecile, and the 

It is held by a very few scientists that there is a natural 
law governing or limiting the physical progress of all organic 
matter; that so far as man is concerned, he rises to a certain 
physical and mental standard, then begins to decline, and is 
at last absorbed by mother earth. 

This theory of man's return to barbarism rests upon 
the above analogy, and is not supported by any logical evi- 
dence and therefore not fully accepted; it only adds a little 
to the argument in favor of reversion to type. The reason 
for the mental and moral delinquencies, which are so preva- 
lent, is undoubtedly caused by malformation of the brain 
structure. "A marked departure, in one form or another, 



from a normal brain structure is found in most all criminals." 
This question is discussed at length under criminality. 

That mind does influence matter under certain conditions, 
there is abundant evidence, and by a comprehensive study of 
this fact, using it as a key, we may be able to unlock the 
secret of nature; thus work in harmony with the law of 
God, and be enabled to counteract the law of reversion 
to type. 

The question has been asked: "Will our present system of 
education ultimately bring the race to ruin if not supple- 
nieiited by the education of the masses, in regard to the laws 
^hich govern reproduction?" To which we answer, yes! It is 
as inevitable, as that animal or plant life which is not assisted 
in its development, by proper nourishment, or by what some 
call natural selection, which is only an unconscious action 
that is in harmony with natural law, must, in that case, be- 
come subject to the other natural law, reversion to type. 

But what has the mind of one human being to do, with 
the formation of the brain structure of another human being? 
Does it, or can it in any manner, change the white or gray 
matter, or the fibres of the brain, and does it increase or de- 
crease its capacity? If the character of a man is controlled 
by the quality of the brain substance, and by the shape of 
the brain, which is conceded by the very best authority, and 
accepted by all anatomists, can its structure, or its quality be 
changed after birth? It is said by eminent authority that 
the human brain does not grow in weight after the eighth 
year; it is then as heavy as it ever will be. After that it ex- 
pands, and as its possessor becomes more intellectual, there 
is an increased amount of gray matter deposited. All envi- 
ronment simply expands or contracts the brain cells of an 
individual. After that age no system of education can change 
its structure; that is to say, unless an individual has a brain 
which can comprehend certain facts, no amount of education 
will alter it. It can do no more than improve or retard that 
which the individual has. You can only improve the men- 


tality of the br§in structure whiph it has, not the brain soil 
which it has not, or in which it is deficient. This fact is 
evident. We see one who cannot understand astronomy or 
mathematics, but is fond of history. Macauley, the historian, 
was absolutely incapable of learning mathematics; so was 
Sir William Hamilton, the philosopher. One is a failure as 
a merchant, but is a good carpenter or blacksmith; another 
is a good musician but a poor bookkeeper, and so on. 

Here lies the whole question, which, briefly stated, is: l-^ 

How can the brain structure be properly formed in the ma- 
jority of mankind? Upon its solution depends the future 
progress of the race. 

The overpowering influence which the mental condition 
of the mother has upon the formation of the body of her 
prospective child is well known. The eflPect it has upon the 
child's mentality is not so well known. This is the knowledge 
which is necessary to enable a mother to produce a perfect 
organism in her offspring. That she does shape the brain 
structure, and through it, influences the character of her chil- 
dren, cannot be successfully controverted. 

The shape or form of the skull depends upon its contents, 
and its effect upon the habits and character of an individual 
has been thoroughly studied. It is taught in phrenology and 
physiognomy. There is plenty of post-natal culture in the 
home, kindergartens, schools and colleges, but no attempts 
are made to teach pre-nataFculture, except for hogs and other 
live stock, which is done in agricultural colleges. The most 
ignorant mother, is aware that so-called "birth marks" are 
produced by a mental shock to the mother, but no systematic 
efforts have ever been put forth to teach this important sub- 
ject to coming parents. Nor ever before has it been taught 
how to systematically overcome a scare or shock. 

'Tis true, there are many voluminous works upon heredity, 
but they are unfathomable. Maternal impressions have been 
studied, and a few advanced thinkers have written upon the 
subject. Here and there an article has appeared in medical 




journals, but in no case has it been systematically investigat- 
ed or taught. They have reached conclusions, without any 
scientific basis from which the subject could be studied, 
therefore but little attention has been paid to it. Medical 
writers have given a few facts, that is to say, have compiled a 
few cases, but no ground work upon which one could formu- 
late a logical premise has ever been given by any one of them. 

The fact is dawning upon the minds of some of our edu- 
cators, that a powerful factor is at work which is bearing fruit 
in the projiagation of men and women who are not good citi- 
zens, and that there is something lacking. They do not 
seem to be aware of the fact that nature's law of reversion to 
type is bound to do its work upon the human race, as well as 
upon a brood of fine pigeons, unless it is counteracted by in- 
telligent action which is in harmony with God's law of pro- 
gress. That the product of our present civilization is yield- 
ing a class of citizens who are not as virtuous, nor as honest, 
as they might be for their own good and the welfare of society, 
is apparent to all thinking men. 

The subject of the cause of the many varieties in human 
nature is a question of great importance in this connection. 
The peculiar traits of character, good or bad, that are found 
in children, and no trace of which can be found in the par- 
ents, is known as acquired character; at other times, because 
the scientist having no knowledge of previous conditions, 
he has called it atavism. 

Herbert Spencer says: "A right answer to the question, 
whether acquired characters are inherited, underlies right 
beliefs, not only in biology and physiology, but also in edu- 
cation, ethics, and politics The question of acquired 

character, being transmissible, is the most important question 
before the scientific world." [See Contemporary Review, vol. 
66, page 502.] 

Mr. Spencer no doubt had in mind the fact that when the 
subject of acquired character was thoroughly comprehended, 
means could be instituted which would prevent the trans- 



mission of imperfect organisms, and in this manner a large 
share of the prevailing crime and physical deformities in 
mankind, would be eliminated. His writings have not in- 
cluded man's mentality to any great extent, and what there 
is, is not very clear. His works refer mainly to the structure 
of active organisms; living, breathing, organized matter. 
Man's mental varieties are practically tabooed. 

Scientists have not given the subject of man's acquired 
mental characteristics the study they should have. It needs 
close companionship with various types of mankind, and this 
is what the average scientist could not do successfully, as his 
student life debarred him from that necessary acquaintance- 
ship with many characters. The average student relies large- 
ly upon text books. That is to say, if the subject cannot be 
found in some recognized text book, he declines to investigate 
it. Men whose lives are wholly devoted to books, are not 
well in touch with the world of fact; that is, with the people 
generally. It is different with animal life. In that case he 
can confine the subject which he is studying, and investigate 
it to its minutest atom, without any loss of the dignity with 
which the student is apt to clothe himself. 

This does not imply that no scientists have investigated 
the varieties of man; but they were studying other subjects, 
not the mind. It is assumed that no student of man's organ- 
ism could have done so, for the cause of mental varieties 
seems so plain that it could not have been overlooked, and if 
a small share of the time and a proper study, which has been 
given to physical organisms, had been alotted to the mental 
characteristics of mankind, the cause would have been ap- 
parent. The student lives in a circle of his own, and the 
world is generally bounded by his mentality. If it be broad, 
then he will be broad in his views and studies. One reason 
why the subject has been neglected is, because many writers 
upon heredity and kindred questions say, "That man's mental 
nature is unfathomable." Such statements, coming from the 
able men who have written voluminous books upon the sub- 


ject, have deterred humble investigators, and they have 
neglected to study that which they have been told is one of 
the unknowable mysteries. 

Maternal impressions is a powerful factor in its ability to 
elevate or to degrade coming generations, and a thorough 
education of the race upon this subject is necessary. If 
society refuses to study the subject, then it is bound, because 
of man's organic composition, to degrade him through the 
law of reversion to type, as he is but simply a part of all 
organic life in creation and is subject to the same great law 
as are all other organisms. This must be conceded by the 
dullest intellect. If mankind wishes to profit through the 
best means of elevating the race, it must be in harmony with 
a natural law to attain that end rather than, through ignor- 
ance of such a law, work in harmony with its opposite, the 
law of reversion to type. 

Reasoning from analogy, we see the operation of two op- 
posing forces in all nature, i. e., the law of growth, and its 
opposite, the law of decay. The conclusion must be, that it 
is man's duty to use the power which is given to him to im- 
prove the talent placed in his hands — use it to the best 
advantage. As has been remarked, the ability of society, as 
it is at present organized, to improve mankind, is counter- 
acted through ignorance of the fundamental law of reproduc- 
tion, or at least one phase of it, which man should take 
advantage of. 

The law of reversion to type exerts its power when man 
does not follow its. opposite — the law of progress — although, 
ultimately, reversion to type gets the upper hand through 
death, when man returns to his original composition, earth. 

Society, through a species of false reasoning, has refused 
to look into the question of reproduction, thus unconsciously 
assisting the operation of the law of reversion to type, to the 
detriment of its opposite, the law of progress — that is, has 
assisted the law of decay instead of the law of growth. It is 
as though man had refused to study the laws governing phys- 


ical health, and had gone on reproducing such as were 
diseased, and thus shortening his days and producing misery. 
Humankind is producing mentally diseased persons; this is 
plain to any observer or student of sociology. The question 
remains. Can individual and collective man be permanently 
improved? We answer again. Yes! and this work hopes to 
be able to make it dear to the reader. 




"Ohl everlasting truth. 

The soul of all that's true; 
Sure flruide alike of age and jouth, 
Lead me and teach me, too." 

**If a word could save me, and that word were not the truth; nay. if it did tnrt 
swerve a hair's breadth from the truth, I would not say it.**^LonafdU3W. 

In the solution of any problem it is essential that the start 
should be made from a correct premise. Beware of the ab- 
stract reasoning and the dogmatic assertion of the metaphysi- 
cian, or the scholastic verbiage of the professional scientist. 

Science rests upon what is proved. Of all matter it 
assumes to know only its elements, and they are irreducible. 
The heart of science is this: ''To discern law in the phe- 
nomena of nature, and to trace it in all its branchings." The 
biologist accepts protoplasm as a definite fact, because he 
says he must, and from which he formulates his premise, 
back of which all is mystery. The student of heredity cannot 
be too well grounded as to the facts upon which his conclu- 
sions are based, and no heed should be given to the dogmat- 
ism displayed in the remark, "That this or that argument 
proves too much." Such an opinion, coming from one who 
is presumed to look solely at the facts, shows that prejudice 
has a stronger hold upon his mind than a desire for the truth. 
It seems, and it is a dogmatic statement, that a theory can be 
too strongly entrenched in fact; that too much proof can .be 
furnished to establish a truth. Facts of one kind are not to 

TRUTH. 77 

be distrusted because they difiPer in kind or quality, if they 
lead to the same conclusion. 

To find the cause of mental varieties, man must be investi- 
gated. By taking his mentality as a base of operation, it will 
be found that some cause has been at work to change him, or 
which produced a different mentality from that of his progen- 
itors. His inind must have been influenced, or there would 
be no change in his nature differing from his ancestors. The 
mind must be the starting point for a change of varieties. 

"There are phenomena concerning man which are dis- 
cerned by consciousness alone, and they must be received as 
real, whether they can or cannot be explained." And from 
these phenomena conclusions can be drawn to demonstrate 
the correctness of the premise. The phenomena will, by 
invariable repetition, prove that the premise is correct. If the 
result of the same phenomena is variable, it would show that 
some factor is at work which has not been considered; it must 
be found and taken into account, or the conclusions will be 
erroneous. The unknown factor is essential to a correct solu- 
tion of any phenomena that may be under consideration. 

To illustrate: A student of causation on the line of hered- 
ity or maternal impressions knows two brothers. One is 
mean, ugly, irritable and of a pugnacious disposition — he will 
fight at *.*the drop of the hat;" the other is kind, gentle and 
sympathetic. The student, while investigating such a case, 
will hear of other ones, and if he is a superficial thinker will 
conclude that, as the factors are the same, so far as he knows 
them, there is nothing in the theory of maternal impressions, 
alid that it has no foundation. If such should be his con- 
clusions, he has failed to note an essential factor, which is 
the mental condition of the mother; that is, the wishes and 
desires which engrossed her mind while she was building the 
individual brains of these children. In the former case the 
mother was cross, irritable and angry when she became con- 
scious of her condition; and in the latter case she was recon- 



ciled, and accepted the situation without murmur. (See the 
case of Mrs. R., of I.) 

The average man is apt to decide as to the truth or error 
of a proposition before the import of the subject is fully com- 
prehended, and is not in possession of suflScient data, and 
unconscious of the fact that he has failed to grasp the entire 
subject. i 

"A man that seeks precise truth* has need to remember what every name 
fitands for, and place It accordingly, or he will find himself entangled in words 
which will lead him into absurdities."— Hobb«8. 

There is such a thing as intellectual tyranny. It can be 
seen in politics, where a man indulges in sophistries, and 
refuses to examine facts for fear he will find himself in the 
wrong. The tyranny consists in shackling the brains and 
refusing to allow freedom of thought. 

Much time has been spent by scientists trying to prove 
that man's ancestor was an ape, (at least, that is the general 
impression) ; that the ape came from some lower species, and 
those from some still lower kind; but very little has been 
done to find out why so many of the race are vicious, sordid 
and cruel; why so many criminals, imbeciles, and deformi- 
ties are produced. The intelligent business heads in the de- 
l>artment of live stock have been for years carefully investi- 
gating and learning how to produce the healthiest and best 
animals, and they will select an animal as near perfect as they 
can get, mating it with one that accords with what they wish 
to produce. In doing this, whether intentionally or not, a 
fundamental law of nature is obeyed; in other words, mix the 
proper ingredients, and get that which is bound to be the 
product — an improved class. 

Nature provides, step by step, a lifting up, or elevation of 
its creatures, providing its laws are obeyed. But man, the 
most complex of all, with his knowledge of natural law and 
its results to the animal species, allows his own race to degen- 
erate, or improve haphazard. Mankind keeps on ignorantly 
propagating it, good or bad as it happens to be, and after the 



TRUTH. 79 

birth of the mentally lame, halt, and blind, the humanitarian 
takes them in hand and tries to rebuild the crooked and 
warped brains. As well attempt to change the shape of a 
congenitally deformed hand or foot by a systematic course of 
lectures. Such deformed brains should never have been 
created, nor would they have been produced to the extent 
they are, if as much pains had been taken to educate human- 
ity upon a line for the improvement of its brain structure, as 
has been taken to improve the breeds of horses and cattle. 
How to improve the condition of the indigent and criminal 
classiBS, is a problem with which the philanthrophy of the 
age is grappling. So far the effort has not been ei^couraging. 
The theory, that through righteousness they could be placed 
upon a higher plane which would put them in a condition 
where they could work out their own salvation, has not been 
effective. The most intellectual slum workers are coming to 
the conclusion that this alone is not sufficient. It must be 
supplemented by some oth^r agency, something additional, 
that will assist in the work of regenerating the masses. The 
latest we note, is, that in New York an exhibition of fine 
paintings has been thrown open to the poor, expecting to 
teach them the aesthetic, and thus create a love for beauty. 
All this to develop righteousness. Some one has called such 
efforts "Feeding a hungry lion with rose leaves." All such 
work, to elevate the criminal classes, must of necessity be a 
failure until the slum element becomes mentally able to ap- 
preciate art. The sight of fine paintings may, for the mo- 
ment, impress one here and there, but the general result will 
be of no permanent value. 


It will be necessary to teach the coming mothers of the 
land, the great importance of keeping their minds in a state 
of moral health; that their longings and desires must be 
pure; that all impurity of mind will be injurious to their 
offspring as surely as bodily filth would be injurious to the 
physical being. 


"Man, from the activity of his mental faculties, cannot 
avoid reflection, and past impressions and images are inces- 
santly- passing through his mind." And the woman who is 
sensitive, and receptive to all the various impressions which 
have a bearing upon her, is the one whose mentality affects 
her offspring the most. The woman of dull intellect not be- 
ing easily moved, produces no change in the character of her 
children; there is a sameness noticeable in the children of 
such families. They can be found in the thinly settled por- 
tions of various states, where the mother rarely leaves the 
home, and especially at the periods under discussion. One 
of this class told the writer that she was bom in, and had 
never been out of, the county. Bear in mind, there is never 
an exact likeness, but a marked physical or facial resemblance 
is found, particularly where the mother is of a phlegmatic 
temperament. It is noticeable that the more nervous and 
excitable the mother is, the more variable the children will be. 
This applies to all grades of society. 

The marked physical or facial resemblance which has been 
noticed of the mother who had never been out of the county, 
indicates a mental similarity, and shows that the mother had 
gone through a similar mental process in each case. There 
was nothing to disturb her. In such a phenomena all the 
factors were nearly, alike, and the result could not be other- 
wise. Nature would be untrue to herself. "Like produces 
like," and the effect must be a similarity. The deduction in 
regard to isolated families is not in itself conclusive, but 
taken in connection with other phenomena, adds a link to 
the chain of evidence by which it is shown that the mother's 
mentality is the strongest factor in the mental variation of 
her children. 



"This is not a chance* world, but a world of law." 

In taking a philosophic view of the various homes, in 
hamlet, town and city, and observing the mothers who are 
bringing, good, bad and indiflPerent children into the world, 
and when it is contemplated that many of the number will 
be paupers and criminals, thus becoming a menace to society, 
the question arises, how can such a state of affairs be im- 
proved? * 

The answer to this question is, through the study of 
maternal impressions. This is the point which is to be im- 
pressed upon the masses by this argument. Its solution is 
the important question and its continued reiteration is essen- 
tial. It is a certainty, that by a proper education and diffu- 
sion of the knowledge of maternal impression and its effects, 
the prospective mothers will be able to reduce the number of 
paupers and criminals; also the production of physically 
imperfect human beings could be largely averted. The pro- 
spective mothers should be instructed that upon them rests 
the responsibility of producing sound brain fibre. That it is 
in their power to make the quality of the brain substance 
good or bad, and that upon it depends her child's ability to 
comprehend good or bad teachings; and the future weU being 






of their offspring also depends ujwn a sound brain structure, 
as its physical health depends upon a sound body. Such an 
education would result in an improved race of human beings 

It is a question of the deepest import what the child 
shall be. Will its life be happy and joyous, a pleasure to 
itself and a benefit to the world, or will it be a source of dis- 
comfort and discredit to itself and its friends. Before its 
advent into the world its life problem begins. It may receive 
some of its characteristics from its grand-parents, or it may 
resemble its parents, more or less, but the chief influence 
over its entire life will be due to the mental and physical 
condition of the mother during the year preceding its birth. 
More depends upon pre-natal, than upon all aute-natal con- 

It is said by some "That the sins of the fathers, their 
vices, virtues, the strength and weakness of all by-gone gen- 
erations, find a focus in the little morsel of flesh that is called 
a baby." It is said to be to our advantage, as well as our 
misfortune, "That we are heir to all the ages, so that every 
man carries more or less of the imperfection — the lower life — 
of all the long series of forms, reaching back to the begin- 
ning." That statement may be true, providing there is a 
normal condition surrounding the mother, and there is noth- 
ing to disturb her mind during this period. In such a case 
it may be that heredity has full sway, the mother being pass- 
ive, no factor except the natural process of reproduction is at 
work, and it is not interfered with by any human agency. 
Such cases are rare, i. e., that the mother has no unusual 
wishes or desires which engross her mind. It is a'fc such 
times, by desiring and wishing, that a mother can make the 
world better by her presence in it. Every mother should 
know how to produce good children; such as will at least be 
as good, if not better and happier than the average. If she 
was a chicken fancier, she would study how to breed good 
chicks. How much more important it is to produce good 
men and women. Then a mother should see to it that sh^ 


1 — 

does not bring forth mentally or physically defective brains 
or bodies. The mother has it in^her power to endow her off- 
spring with a good constitution, a vigorous intellect, and 
good morals. She can modify them at will, but to do so 
intelligently, she must be educated in regard to maternal 
impressions. The surroundings of the mother have much to 
do with the results, that is, the eflPect which her environment 
has upon her prospective child; if it has a tendency to make 
her peevish and fretful, or vulgar and cruel, the child will 
partake of her nature. As she is at that time, so her child 
will be. 

Illustration: Mrs. R., of I., when she became aware that 
she was to become a mother, was very much vexed because it 
would prevent her from enjoying the usual social gatherings 
with her friends. She was warned of the bad effect her peev- 
ishness and angry spirit would have upon her child. She 
scouted the idea, and would not believe it. Note the result- 
she had, as one lady remarked, "The crossest baby I ever 
saw." Her second child, born two years later, was of -the 
average good nature, the mother admitting that in this case 
she was reconciled to her situation. The lesson in the first 
case was a severe one, but the world and the child will suffer 
through the ignorance of that mother. If the mother's envir- 
onment is of such a nature as to make everything pleasant, 
and her life is joyous and happy, its effect will be to produce 
a kindly, good*dispositioned child. 

Illustration: A girl was born to Mrs. B., of H., when 
Mrs. R.'s first child was fifteen months old. Mrs. B.'s baby 
was one of the best natured children that could be desired. 
There were two causes which affected this mother's mind 
favorably: First, an earnest desire for a child; second, the 
cross baby of Mrs. R. These two ladies were very intimate, 
and before the birth of this child, Mrs. B. often expressed 
herself, "I hope my baby will not be as cross as Mrs. R.'s." 
She says now that she has no doubt her wishes, which she 
often expressed, had the effect which is so plainly shown in 


the diBposi tion of her little one. When it is considered that the 
mother is of a quick temper and nervous disposition, the case 
ie an interesting one. Both cases are so well known to the 
writer, that the phenomena compels a belief in the mental 
influence of these mothers producing differing natures. The 
ladies were close friends previous to, as well as after, the birth 
of these children. 

A course in the study of the influence of the mother's 
mental state^ as it affects her prospective offspring, would be 
the means of eliminating, in the future, much of the mean 
disposition, and ugly temperament, that is so prevalent. It 
might also save the coming mothers many a heartache, and 
would be a blessing to her offspring as well as to society at 
large. The latest scientific researches prove the possibility 
of the wonderful control which mind has over matter, and the 
latest developments demonstrate the fact, so that this factor, 
mental or pre-natal influence, has an important bearing upon 
the solution of the cause of varieties. 

In the study of heredity and all kindred subjects, mater- 
nal impression is a factor which must be taken into account, 
to enable one to arrive at a correct solution. It is conceded 
that all the education of the age is intended to develop good," 
and all know how important it is to instruct the young in re- 
gard to their physical health. Volume after volume is written 
to impress this fact upon parents, but the most important of 
all, viz: To instruct the coming mothers how to produce 
morally sound brains in their children, is a subject which is 
entirely ignored. Without sound brains— brains that are able 
to comprehend that which is taught — the education must be a 

There is a class of well-meaning, narrow-minded, men- 
tally weak-kneed persons, who, from a distorted sense of 
propriety, have not the courage to endorse measures that will 
enlighten the masses, but who will in private say, "Oh, yes! 
the young should know the truth, and some should teach 
them/' and at the same time refuse assistance in any manner- 


It is the duty of all who have studied this problem in the 
least, to enlighten such as have not given it any time or 
thought. In this way assist in making the world better by 
restricting the birth of the illy born, so that there will be less 
crooked and warped brain structures, and fewer physically 
deformed. Thus, instead of interfering with nature through 
ignorance, assist in its better development. 

"The proper study of mankind, Is man."— Pojje. 

Man's study of his fellow man is intuitive. This is plainly 
seen in a child when it first attempts to use a pencil or pen. 
It tries to produce something, which, if able to explain, it 
calls' a man or boy; in no case will it be a tree or animal. 
These appear as the child comprehends the need of such 
things, as houses, horses, cows, and all other objects necessary 
for the preservation and comfort of man. A child's first at- 
tempt at drawing will generally result in a round face, goggle 
eyes, a dash for the nose and another for the mouth, a body 
with two arms and legs, with knobs for feet, marks at the 
ends of the arms for fingers. A rough diagram in which 
humanity is displaying itself to that infant intellect, in its 
simplest form. But this very act, viz: The child's first at- 
tempt at fixing its thoughts so that they become permanent 
and tangible, proves conclusively that nature's great law of 
self preservation is asserting itself in the plastic mind of the 
child, teaching it the necessity of man's study of man; not 
only in general, but in the abstract, or concrete form, and the 
act, when analyzed, is found to be one phase of the great law 
of self preservation, and closely allied to all studies and 
sciences that have as their object the preservation and repro- 
duction of the human race. 

The study of man will ever form one of the most intel- 
lectual resources for the scientific student. The romantic 
realities in the many phases of character, with their startlijig 
incidents and conflicting scenes, is worthy the maturest 
thought of this or any other age. The record of all that is 


noble incites the stndent to a better manhood, and unoon- 
ficionsly stimnlates to a higher purjKise in thought, word, and 
deed, and the examination of the immoral and baser attributes 
prompts him to shun such action in his own life and charac- 
ter, providing ho is able to grasp its import. A study of liv- 
ing, breathing, pulsating humanity, if fully appreciated, con- 
tains more real stimulus to a higher, purer life, than all fliat 
a Shakespere ever thought or wrote. The ever changing 
views of character, and the deductions therefrom, present an 
estimate of man, based upon facts and governed by principles 
vrhich are fundamentally just and true, and they are no doubt 
of vital importance to the proper elevation of the race, men- 
tally, morally, aud physically. 

In the study of varieties in man, the first question is the 
person's character. Is it a variation from hi:^ immediate 
ancestors, and where did it come from? The factors in such 
a case are many. The place where the person lives, and the 
climatic surroundings which may have a bearing, should be 
studied, and the difference, if any, in the environment of his 
parents. Were they educated in the same mental atmosphere? 
If they were, then that can be eliminated as a factor, thus 
narrowing the line of investigation. Study the parents' pecu- 
liarities, then any of the grandparents* peculiar notions. If 
no clue can be found, the next and only course is the moth- 
er's state of mind for a few months before the birth of her 
child, If it is a criminal who is under investigation, the 
mother^ if she is intellectual, can tell if she had any desire 
on the same line of criminal action as is found in her off- 
spring. Be cautious and do not be misled in case the mother, 
through modesty or shame, denies that such thoughts had 
ever entered her mind, for the average mother is very sensi- 
tive upon any question which pertains to her morality, and 
might consider it a stain upon her integrity, although always 
willing to excuse her child by taking the blame upon herself. 
So that in all such investigation, care should be taken not to 
arouse indignation, which would teud to mislead a person in 


the investigation. If the problem is in regard to a peculiar 
taste or desire, the mother will be able to tell the ca,use. Un- 
less her memory be defective, it will generally be found that 
her longings were so strong that she could never forget them. 
Do not be misled, as was the writer for a while, in the fol- 
lowing case: Mr. K. of W. is a monomaniac upon the sub- 
ject of rifles; is an ardent and enthusiastic member of a rifle 
corps and gun club; the handling and talking about riflps, 
(not shotguns, he cares nothing for them), is a source of in- 
tense gratification to him, and he will drop all other business 
to talk about them. He remembers when he was five years of 
age, getting a gun into his hands for the first time, he could 
not lift it, but recalls the thrill of pleasure that ran throujili 
him. He was a crack shot, and represented the state in whic)i 
he lives, at the international rifle meet in New York. His 
mother was asked if she had encouraged him in this desire, 
or had taught him to handle a gun. She replied, "Oh, no! T 
always opposed it, and trembled with fear whenever I sa.w hici 
with a gun." So that his education was not the cause. For 
a time the theory of maternal impressions in this case received 
a back-set. Here was a mother who had no love for the things 
which her son had such an intense desire for; in fact, she was 
afraid of them, and her whole mentality was opposed to them, 
If the investigation had stopped there, it would have been a 
point against maternal impression; but in another interview^ 
and a closer investigation, the fact was elicited that when the 
parents were married, the father was a member of a rifle com- 
pany in Sweden, and how proud the mother was to see her 
young husband in his daily rifle practice, with a glittering gun 
upon his shoulder. The desire to thus see her husband daily, 
so arranged the brain cells in her child that his whole delight 
is for rifles; it is his only pastime. Five months after tho 
birth of this son, the father's time expired as a soldier and the 
family emigrated to the United States. The father never had 
anyidesire to handle a gun, and his membership in the riflo 
company was compulsory. The father's dislike for and the 



mother's fear of guns eliminates heredity as a factor. It is 
well to add that Mr. K. never goes hunting for game, in fact, 
is opposed to it; his mania is solely to handle rifles and par- 
ticipate in rifle practice. Here the question of maternal im- 
pression was plainly proven, and it is dwelt upon to caution 
an investigator in regard to misleading answers on the part 
of the mother, which is, in most cases, done unintentionally. 
If the peculiarity is a passion for music, the mother will 
admit that she was strongly impressed,, either by a desire to 
be a musician, or hoped that her child would take to music; 
or, possibly, as was the case of one, where the mother, who 
knew nothing of music, accompanied her husband, who was 
an amateur, each week or two, when he went to practice with 
a friend. This case is well known to the writer. 




The brain of man; its formation; and through it, the in- 
fluence it has upon the mind, with its peculiar instincts and 
varieties; its effects upon the individual character, and upon 
society, is a subject worthy of the best thought of this gener- 
ation; and its study on the line of maternal impressions, will 
bring with it a solution ©f the problem; will teach how to 
elevate the race. 

All measures which have been tried, and that are in use, 
have not prevented the degradation of a large share of the 
world's inhabitants; that is, the methods in use have not pre- 
vented the many from sinking into the mire of degradation 
and crime. There are persons who are fixed in the idea that 
human agency is unable to do anything without the aid of 
something supernatural, and they decline to use that shar& of 
common sense which is allotted to each one, in a greater or 
lesser degree. Such individuals will have no use for this 
work, and it was not written for them. No evidence could be 
presented, no experience of their own, or that of their nearest 
or best friends, could avail; all facts presented would be 
looked at from a supernatural standpoint, through darkened 
and ignorant mental optics. But the man or woman who be- 
lieves that they have been created for some good purpose, and 
who will use the God-given faculties which they possess, to 
elevate themselves, and to improve the race; to such persons 
a thoughtful study of the work is commended. It will be 


especially beneficial to the coming parents of the laud; to tlio 
young men and women who expect to become fathers and 
mothers. To them it is earnestly commended, as it is largely 
for their instruction. The future well-being of mankind de- 
pends upon the coming race, father than upon any efforts 
that can be made effective for the majority of those now in 
existence. By this it is not meant to imply that the efforts 
now put forth to elevate humanity should cease'; by no means! 
This subject is discussed in another chapter. 

The facts presented on the line of maternal impressions, 
and the arguments to show the ability of the mother to con- 
trol and shape the destiny of her offspring, are not generally 
known. It is a subject that should be made so plain, that no 
one can err, in the proper education of the masses on this 
line ; au education that will teach them the power which they 
exert, and that it rests solely with the mother. Such teach- 
ing will enable her to elevate or degrade her offspring; and, 
that it is done prenatally, is here proven. "We must edu- 
cate," says old Dr. Beecher, "We must educate, or we must 
perish/' Every person has been brought into existence by 
woman; her life and her thoughts have at least partially 
moulded each one's existence before birth. And the policy of 
repression, or the attempt to keep the coming mothers in en- 
tire ignorance of fundamental laws governing the reproduc- 
tion of the race, has been in vogue too long and society is 
paying the penalty. 

Lady Henry Somerset says: "There has grown up in 
America, an artificially imposed silence upon all questions 
relating to maternity, until that holy thing has become a mat- 
ter of shame! Will not women try and break this down? It 
seems life will be truer, and nobler, the more we recognize 
that there is no indelicacy in the climax and coronation of 
the creative powers, but rather it is the highest glory of the 
race; .... How many children are born into the world, 
whose mothers greet them with a sob, instead of a kiss. 
Through dreary months these mothers have environed the 



child with a feeling that it is not wanted, it is at enmit}^ with 
all its surroundings, and its blighted life is evidence of some 
attempt to thwart natural laws." In commenting Tii^X)n Lady 
Somerset's statement, the editor of the "Arena" says: "This 
occurs, not- only in the houses of the poor and depraved^ but 
in the homes of the rich and educated. Their little ones are 
blessed with a pure heart and mind, or cursed with a i>assion- 

ate temper No fact is of more importance, and about 

which there is such dense ignorance, not alone on the part of 
the masses, but in the minds of our public men, the result of 
this reigri of ignorance is seen in the murder records, :\\\A tlie 
offenses against society as well as the diseases transmitted 
from parent to child, this picture cannot be overdrawn." 

What our country needs is intelligent and wisi^ jiRrents, 
who will bear children that will not be the wards of tho state, 
and thus, in time, the charitable and penal institutions of the 
land will become depopulated. We pray with the murderer, 
before hanging him. It would have been better to have had 
him born into the world with good instincts, instead of mur- 
derous ones. 

Dr. Forbes Winslow, who has been referred to, has truly 
said: "Something more potent than mere intellect ufil culture 
is required to be put in force for the purpose of regulating 
the conduct of respectable beings with a free will across the 
stormy sea of life, from birth to death." The question for 
the sociologist and the humanitarian to solve, is, what is this 
"More potent thing?" 

The fundamental principle of our system of education, so 
far as the department of family relation is concerned, is de- 
fective, as it fails to teach the necessity of producing sound 
and healthy brains. This can only be done by a system 
which teaches the coming mothers that if they allow their 
minds to be filled with unrighteous and unholy thouj^hts, the 
result will be — must be — defective brains in their olTspriiig. 
The influence of the mind of a prospective mother ui>on her 
child before its birth is of tremendous importance to its 





active existence as a member of society, from the fact that it 
lies in that mother's power to shape its mentality, that it may 
be a power for good or for evil. Very few are aware that 
there is such an influence, and the masses have never given 
it any thought. There can be no doubt that it exerts a com- 
manding influence and gives direction or determines the 
whole life and character of the individual. The compara- 
tively few who have any knowledge of the subject, know that 
what they do know is but little, in regard to the various pro- 
cesses at work in the formation of the brain substance — that 
Ls, they know but little of the influence of the mother's mind 
iu increasing or decreasing the receptive brain capacity of 
her offspring. 

The question has been asked, "What do you propose to 
accomplish by this pessimistic view of society?" The aim is 
to awaken a discussion upon the subject, and thus assist in 
dispelling the mist of ignorance and false conceptions of duty 
that we owe to the youth of the land, and especially to edu- 
cate that class who can control the future well being of the 
race — ^viz: The coming parents. 

It is not so essential that the coming fathers should be 
instructed, but the study of the subject can do them no harm, 
on the contrary, it will teach them, that when they become 
heads of families, the necessity of good environment for their 
wives, and especially when the mother is in the condition to 
which this work calls attention. We hope to bring the sub- 
ject of maternal impressions before intelligent parents; to 
impress them with a comprehension of the great need of an 
education upon the line of pre-natal influence. 

In the study of this subject, as here presented, no one of 
chaste mind will feel unwilling to recommend its perusal, as 
not a word can be found in it to jar the feelings or shock the 
most sensitive. The use of technical terms that are unintelli- 
gible to the masses words that are hard to pronounce and 
rarely heard by the many have been left for other works, by 
scientific writers. Technical terms are not adhered to, as 


they are too scholastic for the general reader. Most of the 
literature upon kindred subjects is written by professionals 
for students of abstract science, and they indulge in too much 
literary verbiage, which confuses the average man, and it is 
usually couched in such scholarly tones — as Emerson says: 
"Wrapt in academic robes that hinder thought with its vol- 
uminous folds," — so that the average college-bred person 
labors through it with a dictionary at hand and then at times 
not able to find words which are only familiar to physicians; 
and often the medical student would be compelled to refer to 
special works that give the definition of medical terms. This 
makes any work written by scientists, upon the subject of 
pre-natal influence, too laborious for the masses, who must 
become interested if any permanent good is to be accomp- 
lished. Comparatively few of the common people would ever 
see a scientific work upon the subject, as such books are 
usually in the hands of students of science, and if perchance 
one of the uncultured class looked into such a book, its pages 
would be scanned mechanically, and at last it would be laid 
down with a feeling of, "Oh! that is entirely too deep for me." 
In this work the subject is made so plain that any one 
with a common school education, or who can read and under- 
stand every-day forms of speech, will be able to fully compre- 
hend it; and, with the exception of the chapters which are 
allotted to an examination of kindred subjects (and these are 
simplified), it is written in the language of the common peo- 
ple. The average boy or girl can read it, and, when finished, 
will lay it down with a feeling that they are wiser upon this 
very important subject, and it will pave the way for an intelli- 
gent parent to discuss a question that is not as much spoken 
about as it should be for the good of their children. Why 
the average educated and otherwise well informed parents do 
not like to talk about the manner or means by which human 
nature, in fact, all living creatures reproduce themselves* has 
not been fathomed; it is sufficient, for this argument, to know 
that it is so, at least among civilized nations, whether the con- 


traiy is true as regards barbarous nations is mere conjecture, 
but the inference is tliat they are deticient in that which we 
call nioflesty. 

This work is in no sense immodest, on the contrary, the 
language is pure and chaste. Such a work is sorely needed 
in the education of our youth. Intelligent men can study it 
with improvement; sincere and earnest Christians may exam- 
ine it without being ofiFended; and the purest minded girls 
may read it without causing a blush to mantle their cheeks. 
It is ho|3ed that it will be found so useful that every parent 
will study it, and will make it, as it were, a household book, 
fit for the parlor and the family circle, 

A further and very important object is to make it a text- 
book for schools and colleges. There is the place whore the 
"Something more ijotent than mere intellectual culture," must 
take root. In the school room the work of enlightening the 
masses upon the most important question which confronts 
the student of social progress at this timemustbe done. The 
subject of maternal impressions is, fundamentally, the power 
which mind exerts over matter under certain conditions. It 
is never taught in books on physiology 5 is ruled out, or, 
rather, is not found in the curiculum of medical colleges^ and 
the average physician does not discuss the subject with his 
patients. The fact is, the doctors are not as well informed 
ux>on the subject as one would suppose; their time is spent in 
studying how to heal the sick and biud uji the wounds of 
humanity, and their business is to take charge of humanity 
during and after birth. 

Upon all other questions pertaining to the welfare and 
improvement of humanity the search-light of science has been 
turned, but this most important of all subjects has been com- 
paratively ignored, and young men and women have drifted 
into the joys and sorrows of fatherhood and motherhood, in 
most cases, as ignorant of nature's great and aU-important 
law of reproduction as the most ignorant savage. It might 
be said, more ignorant than the Indian, as they hold the per- 


son of their squaws sacred while in process of nourishing or 
building the body of the prospective child. 

If the study of this work does no more than teach some of 
our daughters the sanctity of the life they bear, or expect to 
bear, within them, the work and time spent upon it will be 
amply repaid. 




"We do not take poepession of our ideas, but are posseflsBil bythBm. .... * They 
roaster ua and force us luto the arena, where, Jtke rl^dlatora, we must fl^ht for 
them.'*— Heine. 

What the probfible outcome will be, of our present system 
of efforts to elevate the substratum of eoeietyj known as the 
"Submerged Tenth," can be inferred by a retrospective view 
of whfit has been done in the past for the amelioration of the 
poor and criminal classes. From such a view no hope of any 
change can be expected. Note the efforts which have be€)ii 
put forth for many years in behalf of the children in the 
schools of New York City. Various plans have been tried for 
their moral culture, and abandoned. At one time, every 
morning, some portion of the Bible was read; then the Lord's 
prayer repeated, and appropriate hymn sung. The superin- 
tendent complained of a large class of vicious boys, which the 
schools could not restrain. They went from school to school, 
until they were declared to be incorrigible j then all schools 
were closed to them, after which they roamed the streets until 
the majority graduated in prison. 

Societies for the relief of the indigent are very numerous^ 
but all plans which have been tried are found wanting in the 
elements of success* So far, none have been able to prevent 
the degradation of the masses. Since 1S55 a society has been 
at work in New York, trying to elevate the lower classes^ men- 
tally, morally, and physically. 


The prospectus of this organization states: "Its object is 
to improve the home life, health and habits of the indigontj 
reduce poverty and vagrancy, also to ascertain the true cause 
of their distress/' This organization takes the children and 
teaches the girls to sew and to do general housework in addi- 
tion to the regular school studies. They are taught how to 
prepare food in the cheapest manner, and what kind of food 
is the most nourishing; to work with few kitchen utensils; as 
for instance, when they have no strainer or grater, to take an 
old tin can and punch holes in the bottom with a naiL Cook- 
ing schools are in operation, in all large.cities, to supplement 
what is known as a higher education. All this may be very 
instructive, but ineffective in the majority of cases, so far as 
the moral elevation of the masses ^s concerned, judgiug by 
the various criminal statistics published by the state officials 
whose duty it is to keep a record of all crimes against society. 

The many deeds of cruelty and crime call the attention of 
the sociologist to the cause of the mental condition bf criminals, 
whose misdemeanors at times shock the whole community. 
The one who commits a horrible crime and is indifferent to liis 
misdeeds, must be an abnormal character; his make up of a 
nature not like the majority of mankind, but seems to be as 
Holmes, the murderer, states it, "Born with the devil in me/' 
Holmes never expressed any regret, and said: "I could not 
help being a murderer, any more than a poet could helij 
inspiration to song; the inclination to murder came to me as 
naturally as the inspiration to do right comes to others/' 
There are mysteries of crime which are too deep for philoso- 
phy to solve, or the law to fathom. 


When the term, "The Submerged Tenth," is used in the 
various periodicals, the average man has in mind the very 
lowest dregs of society — those found in the city slums^ and 
the outcasts in the highways and byways of the land. Socit^ty 
looks upon that class not only \7ith pity and contempt^ but 



with fear and trembling, as to the outcome. What "wiU be 
the result to the nation, if the ratio of the "submerged tenth'' 
increases in the future as it has in the' past? Judging from 
the many articles in magazines and journals, thinking people 
are continually in fear of the disaster which may overtake the 

If a study is made of the enormous increase of crime, and 
the steady accumulation of the number of imbecile and in- 
sane, who are, or become, a charge upon the public^when it 
is considered that there were 95,000 imbecile children in the 
United States (see census of 1890), 8,000 of them in charge 
of the various state institutions, the balance of 87,000 were 
distributed among the families of which they are members — 
the subject is appalling. This class, that is the 95,000, could 
well be called a type of the "submerged tenth," bat of a dif- 
ferent lineage. Those to whom Gen. Booth gave the name of 
"the submerged tenth," "are the product of tlie crimiual and 
the depraved classes." This statement is only a half truth, 
that is, partially correct. A careful investigationj and the 
evidence of prison records prove that most felons are of good 
parentage. If the reader will think of the number of crim- 
inals who have been sentenced from his section, he will find 
that most of them are the children of respectable parentage. 
But that large class of imbecile children who are not a public 
charge, as well as many of those who are in public institu- 
tions, in one sense may be termed "the submerged tenth'* of 
the middle and wealthy classes. They are the product of 
thoRe who are the conservators of good order, and who are 
governed by and ofeey the laws. The largest number of this 
type of humanity are rarely seen by the public, unless their 
homes are visited, where, in many cases, the victim is the 
skeleton in the closet, rarely shown or mentioned. A few 
may be seen at the asylums, but the worst cases are not shown 
to the casual visitor even in such institutions, 

All efforts at teaching such as are born crippled in mind 
and soul, is a failure. This is admitted by every one who has 



made a study of the subject. The oflBcers of the asylums for 
such unfortunates say, not one per cent can ever become self- 
sustaining; they cannot be cured, only eased through "this 
vale of tears;" they are an unnatural na/wraZ production, like 
the blind, deaf, and crippled; they are victims of their own 
faulty organization, for which they are not to blame. 


"Crime increases everywhere within civilization.**— StroTian. 

That crime, and consequent misery, is on the increase can 
hardly be denied. In the annual report of the New York 
Secretary of State, March 30, 1896, he says: "There were 
71,491 convictions for crime for the year 1895, against 68,104 
in 1894," an increase in that state of 3,387 in one year. 

From other reports we find there were the following num- 
ber of murders committed in the United States, for the years 
given below: 

1882 . . . 1,467 1885 . . . 1,808 1888 . . . 2,184 1891 . . . 5,906 
1883 . . . 1,642 1886 . . . 1,879 1889 . . . 3,567 1892 ...*.... 
1884 . . . 1,465 1887 . . . 2,335 1890 . . . 4,290 1895 . . . 10,500 

* I could find no figures for 1892, 1893 and 1894. 

In 1880 there were 35,538 convicts in the various peniten- 
tiaries of the United States; in 1890, 45,233. There were 
confined in the various jails of the United States, in 1880, 
12,691, and in 1890, 19,538. The average number of convicts 
in the Iowa prisons increased from 567, in 1887, to 947, in 
1895. The same condition of affairs exist in nearly all the 
states of the union. Of the insane in the various hospitals 
there were, in 1880, 41,177, and in 1890, 74,028. 

Upon an examination of the presumed cause for the in- 
crease of crime, and the various remedies which have been 
suggested by the wise men of the age, we find, among others, 
an article in The North American Review (1896) under the 
title of "How to Arrest the Increase of Homicide," which 
says: "The problem confronting us is whether crimes which 
destroy life shall be triumphant; whether the man of blood 



< - , , shall be the despotic ruler, is the great queBtion of 

the hour We find that in the last six years there 

were 43,902 homicides, and 10,500 of thera committed in 1895, 

- , , . As before stated, these figures show that crime is in- 
creasing We are all anxious for a remedy, but before 

we can obtain one . . . .we must know the cause* It can- 
not be from defective laws, either in state or nation/' [Let 
the reader mark the cause as given by this writer.] *'It is 
largely because of the corrupt methods resorted to to defeat 
the law's adiliinistration The condition is serious. 

, . , , There must be a remedy This can only be 

obtained where full, impartial, and rapid vindication of the 

law is to be had In fact, the greaieat cause for the 

wcrease of crime is the action of the appfdlafe conris. . / , , 

I would remodel the appellate system My judgment 

is, if the people will turn their attention to this gravest of all 
questions, and build up a sentiment for the pure adrainiatra- 
tion of the law, .... crime will decrease in a large 

The above is the gist of the argument, We submit that, 
considered logically, the article proves, if it proves anything, 
that if the appellate court were abolished, — as they are said 
to be the cause — there would be no more crime. Oh, No I 
JudgCj you have not given us the cause; you have only 
emphasized nn efFect of a cause. Is the reader of that article 
to infer that the gentleman believes it would stay the hand of 
a criminal who has murder in his heart if the contemplating 
murderer knew that the appellate court was reconstructed? 
Would a human brute, crazed by drink, who. after dragging 
his wife around by the hair of her head, beats her brains out ; 
would he be more gentle and only kick her out of the house, 
becauee there has been a change in the procedure of the 
appellate court? The ruffian perhaps never knew that there 
was such an august body, and cared less, when his murderous 
instincts were aroused. 

Noj nol The gentlemen comprising the appellate courts 


are not the cause of the increase of crime; they may be the 
cause of the defeat of justice, in some cases. They are not 
the cause of a few, or even-any, of the murders any more than 
they are to blame or are the cause of the death of a man 
hung for murder, when they pass upon and confirm the 
sentence of the lower courts and order that its decree be car- 
ried out. The honorable gentleman will be compelled to 
give a better exposition of the cause of the increase of 
homicides before his theory can be accepted. 

Many articles are written upon this subject, but none, so 
far, have a remedy^ to oflFer which is efFective. Why? Be- 
cause they do not find the fundamental reason for the crim- 
inality of the age. When the true cause of crime is found, 
good citizens, in state and nation, must apply the proper 

Another eminent gentleman, in an address delivered be- 
fore the "Patria" club of New York, April 10th 1896, upon 
the subject of high crime in the United States, the Hon. An- 
drew D. White, Ex-President of Cornell College, made some 
startling statements, and gave figures to prove them. He said: 
**That under no other civilized government, is the right of 
life so trampled upon as under the government of the United 
States." The speaker gave as one cause for the great increase 
of crime, "That enough loop-holes will be found in the laws, 
by men trained in the search, to save the criminal from the 
penalty which his crime deserves." 

He said further; "There are 10,000 murderers doomed to 
death in the United States within the next twelve months. 
In 1889, there were 3,5^1 murders committed, and in 1895, 
10,500, [which corroborates the North American Review's 
statement;] .... If all the murderers were in prison there 
would be over 40,000 of them." He said [mark how near he 
comes to the real cause]: *^The cause of the increase of 
crime is due to dime novels, newspapers, posters, and the 

melodrama The remedy — moral instruction, preach- 

ing righteousness, cleaner journal -^m, remodeling of prisons, 


and laws against viscious books," and suggested speedier pun- 
ishment for crime. 

Is there anything in the argument of this well-known 
educator that has not been tried? We had clean jqurnalism 
years ago, and still crime increased. As for proftching, moral 
instruction, and righteousness, the civilized world and espec- 
ially the United States, have been at work on these lines for 
a long time. There are more churches and members, more 
ministers, more money contributed, and more christian benev- 
olence, not alone alms, but deeds of mercy, than ever before. 
Enthusiastic optimists are pleading for kindergartens, batlis^ 
free concerts, prayers and preaching, and general reform of 
the penal system. Many "Good Samaritians'' work in tbo 
slums amid squalor and filth, and still the great increase of 
crime goes on. Compare the record of crime with the in^ 
crease of church membership: — H. K. Carroll, United States 
statistician, in the Century Magazine, May, 189G, says: "In 
1890 there were 20,618,387, and in 1895, 24,646,584 church 
members, .... the net gain from 1890 to 1895 was 4^028,- 
197. There were $150,000,000 contributed in one year for the 
spread of the Gospel of Righteousness in the United States." 
Now note the increase of crime, 6,933 more murders in 1895 
than in 1890, almost three times as many. There are some 
who flatter themselves that the spirit of evil is decreasing, and 
that righteousness is gaining ground, such items aa quoted 
from the Century are published to prove it. 

There is great danger in such blind optimistic conserva- 
tism. Prudence, patriotism, human sympathy, and religious 
sentiment call upon the age to undertake the task of relieving 
society from the era of crime which is stalking over the land. 
Some other factor must be called to assist the preaching, 
praying, and the doing; "Something more potent than mere 
intellectual culture must transpire." 

One professional teacher has nothing better to offer than 
to say, "That the saving grace is for each one to mind Iub 
own business." Such a statement is inspired by pure, una- 


dulterated selfishness. Another educator suggests, that "The 
remedy for the regeneration of the poor and criminal classes 
would be to put them through a surgical operation, leaving 
enough to breed as many as would be necessary to do the 
heavy labor of the land." 

This writer is ignorant of the fact that most criminals are 
the product of the middle and well-to-do class. (See report 
of the Superintendent of Randall Island House of Refuge: 
"That not one per cent, of the bo.ys in his charge are from 
criminal parents.") And this is all that the wise men of the 
age can oflFer for the regeneration of humanity. Our Creator 
surely does not demand that one of his creatures shall be 
mutilated, and that the public shall thereby violate. a natural 
law. There must be some plan, whic'h will be acceptable to 
an overruling Providence; some plan that will harmonize 
with the laws of nature and of nature's God. The key-note, 
as to the cause of the increase of crime, has not been struck 
by those who have thus far been using wrong terms, and in- 
vestigating effects of crime. They must go back of the effect. 
The appellate court, vicious books, posters, melodrama, 
etc., etc., are not the cause of crime; they are not the funda- 
mental cause; they are the secondary, not the primary cause; 
and crime is the result of the primary and secondary causes. 
The primary cause is imperfect brain formation, and the sec- 
ondary is environment, or education. 

The cause of a love for vicious literature and immoral 
actions, should be the first study. Man must be investigated 
on the line of psychology, not alone anthropology; his tem- 
perament, race, and sex; the climate, necessities, and especi- 
ally the environment of the mother; every phase of her men- 
tal condition must be taken into account, to find how or why 
good parents produce mentally deformed children. This can 
only be done by general observation; not by laboratory meth- 
ods, or studies in a library. What the mother sees, hears 
and tastes; her hopes and fears; her whole environment, 
should be taken into account, and the whole rounded and 


completed by a study of the result upon the brain formation 
of her ofFspring. All these must be studied, as they are 
factors in the development of her child. 

There are men who are unable to construct a single gram- 
matical sentence, in their mother tongue, much less in Greek 
or Latin, who have learned by observation how to improve 
their live stock, but humanity has not learned to know its 
own needs, and how to improve posterity. "It is iu itself a 
most unanswerable argument against the defective education 
of our time, which trains the intellect, but does not develop 

The mental characteristics of the passion-swayed young 
men and women of our land will play an important part in 
moulding the civilization of to-morrow, and their children^ 
through environment and maternal impressions, will partake 
of the vicious taint of passion, greed and crime, if the moth- 
ers are not educated upon the line of reproduction; and then 
. they must heed the lessons. Such lessons the prospective 
mother will heed much sooner than moral lectures, from the 
fact that the most depraved mother's love for her offspring 
will assert itself, and no mother will consciously produce a 
crooked and deformed body, an imbecile, or criminal brain, if 
it is in her power to prevent it; and the object of this work 
is to teach them how it is possible, and that it rests entirely 
with the mothers. 


**We are feelini? our way about this comer of the illimitable worlrt a little bet- 
ter endowed with the machinery of sensation than the protozoan."— 2/aJ/our. 

Upon a careful investigation as to the increase of crime, 
it will be found, fundamentally, in the imperfect education 
of the prospective mothers. The present system of instruc- 
tion must be supplemented by an education which will enable 
the coming mothei to produce more desirable citizens. 'Tis 
true that oui public and private schools develop the masses 
who are born good, but with the past and present system of 


education of the daughters they. are liable to become the pro- 
genitors of vicious and criminal oflFspring, and in the nature 
of things, to bring forth the average number of blind and 
maimed, through ignorance. 

There is a great need of an education which will stop the 
birth of mental, as well as physical, deformities. Intelligent 
mothers are essential. Intelligent, not in the sense of the 
present day higher education, but in the isense of knowing 
their duties and capabilities, when they become prospective 
mothers. Teach them how to produce good brains and sound 
bodies. Teach them God's law, which will govern them, 
under such circumstances and while they are in such a con- 
dition, and the product must be good. 




''From tbe band of blm that loves her, ere she sees the daj^ the boh I oom^i like 
a Dabe; Rprlnj^lnf^ from ber blessed Maker, she quickly turns Ut that which jtelda 
her joy.^—BanU. 

The Btatement that education does not make tho man, will 
no doubt startle some who have always held that idea. But the 
culminating evidence of the age is, that education cannot do 
what nature has practically made it impossible to do, which 
is, to educate a man for a philosopher, when he is intended 
for a coal heaver, A man is capable of making himself, just 
60 far a a his ability is able to overcome the weaknesses which 
are inborn. 

Dr. Galton says, "I have no patience with the theory often 
heard, that children are bom very much alike, and that close 
application, environment, and moral efforts, create the differ- 
ence in men." It is no wonder that Dr. Galton ehould lose 
patience. Such a statement has no foundation in fact. Not 
a teacher but knows how difficult it is to make some pupils 
comprehend a simple proposition, and when an abstract con- 
cept is given, the average scholar is dazed. Upon the other 
handj there are some pupils who are receptive at every pore; 
every idea is at once mentally digested ; every nod a lesson, 
and each hint a sermon. Prof. Seldon said, *'No man is wiser 
for his learning; wit and wisdom are bom with a man.*' 
Maudsley says, "Education cannot make a Socrates, or a 
Shakespeare, out of every one." And Dr. Magoun, of Iowa 


College, put it in another form, when he said, "We can teach 
a person, but we cannot furnish brains." Take a number of 
children in a given family, and from birth they are kopt in 
the same environment, they are never alike, they aro not of 
the same mind or capability. One of them may become an 
artist, another a mathematician, the next a blacksmith, or a 
preacher, and one an angel of mercy, the other a fiend incar- 

Look at the average audience that is found at political 
meetings and in the various lecture rooms. Its mentality is 
small. When put to the test to prove this assertion it will 
only be necessary to note how many will express satisfaction 
when a bright and. witty speaker, who is full of sparkling 
anecdotes, has occupied the platform, and compare tlie opin- 
ions expressed by a similar audience, when a deep and logical 
thinker is upon the same rostrom; how few will praise th& 
latter and how many will say, "I could not understand tlie 
subject." J. Stuart Mill describes the masses as *'C'ollectiv& 
mediocrity." It has been said that man is like an instrument 
upon which is played many variations, with staccato and 
legato movements, some harmonious, and others out of time 
and tune. The instrument, man, is only able to resjjond to 
the touch of the player's soul. If the soul is of a low order, 
then only mean and vulgar harmonies will be produced; if, 
upon the contrary, the mind and soul is of a purer, fiiier cast, 
then the utterances will harmonize with God's moral laws, 
and its pjroduct will be beneficial to itself and to liunianity. 
The pressing need of the age is an education that will pre- 
pare the young for actual life. That is the burden of e^oiij^ 
of all the educators in the land, but it must include tlio rear- 
ing of the family to become effective; it must teach tlio pros- 
pective mother how to produce good children. This most 
important factor has been neglected. Neither parents or tlm 
state have done their duty on that line. Questions wliich are 
important have been neglected; not overlooked, but tlu.^y Iiave 
been steadily ignored. Some, in their bigotry, admit tlie fact 



that society is doing wrong, but use the argument of the 
fatalist, by saying, *'It has always been so and it always will 
bo." It is in this manner that the trnth, which is so essential 
to the welfare of humanity, is hampered by ignorance. 

The mysterious in the material universe is continually 
yielding to the advance of the investigator, who ever goes 
forward, from one truth to another, from a simple combina- 
tion to a more complex phenomena ; and eventually out of the 
many phages of nature, learns what God requires that man 
should do to carry out His will. This is demanded in ©very 
christian organization, and the bible teaches man what his 
duty is. Are its teachings obeyed? Has the christian world 
done its duty, or the christian parent done his duty to his 
own family? Not one parent in a hundr^ has ever taken the 
pains to instruct his son or daughter upon the important law 
of reproduction. 

Those who are competent , by their researches, to enlighten 
mankind, are in duty bound to do so, at least to those of their 
own household and faith. Those who stand in the way, and 
by their foolish and silly notions hinder the work, should be 
sent to the rear; treated as stumbling blocks in the cause of 
humanity. The purpose of the entire educational system as 
it is carried on in public as well as private schools, and col- 
leges, is fundamentally self-preservation, for the well-being 
of the individual, and preservation of social order. Educa- 
tion should not only protect society from general ignorance, 
but also from that ignorance which is displayed in the pro- 
duction of children who are criminals, insane, and deformed. 
That it must eventually be done there can be no question, as 
the birth of these classes is increasing. It remains for the 
present generation to say whether it will begin a reformation 
on that line, or leave it for posterity, and thus let their chil- 
dren and their children's children suffer, as the body politic 
is now suffering, from the effects of ignorance. 

Some say that it is a delicate subject, but that is not a 
good reason why it should be avoided. Nothing is gained by 


mystifying and ingeniously evading it, which only encourages 
unsatisfied curiositjr, when a little plain, wholesome truth 
would set it at rest. Upon the mother devolves the task of 
imparting. the information. She is the safest guide for her 

It must be conceded that during all healthy life the repro- 
ductive passion obtrudes itself unbidden, and with more or 
less force. In its explanation, treat it as you would the study 
of botany; as a process of nature, and that it should be held 
within bounds of and governed by, the laws of decency. In- 
nate diflFerences of sex will assert themselves. Education 
should not attempt to thwart them, as is often done in the 
family, when the child asks a question on that line, but it 
should be explained, and thus enhance that which is so essen-v 
tial to a nobler manhood. Counteract the fashionable novel 
by sound instruction, and in that way shape the career of 
those who are abnormally developed. It can be done in such 
a manner as not to grate harshly upon the ears of the most 
sensitive, and the aim of this work is to make the subject 
plain, without using language that will offend. 

We have no patience with the training which permits 
boys atnd girls to grow up in ignorance of themselves, save as 
they learn from each other. Neither have we any patience 
with parents who wrap the mantle of prudery and ignorance 
around each other, ignoring their duty to their children, to 
society, and to their God. 

It would be better for young men and women to be cogni- 
zant of the dangers on the line of sex relation, in order to be 
able to avoid them, than to grow up in ignorance of them- 
selves, by guessing among themselves. It would be better 
for our children to be correctly informed in regard to the 
dangers on that line, than to grow up ignorant, with the 
chance of becoming victims through such ignorance. The 
question of reproduction is not the motive and sole aim of 
life, but it mingles with and influences all motives and aims, 
and it is inseparable from our existence, but it should be 


held in subjoction. To underrate its influence is a great 

If society keeps on in its present system of odueation; 
that is, refusing to educate the children properly upon the 
line of reproduction, crime and consequent misery will in- 
crease. There should be good reasons for neglecting to teach 
our children what God requires. 

Here and there a student of criminology s^ys that "Mor- 
ality and crime are accidents of birth." To this the answer 
is, that nature never does anything accidental. ThediiEculty 
lie^ in the fact that man has not studied the truths which are 
fill around him. What should be taught^ is the truth, and 
what is needed is the ability to distinguish truth from false- 
hood* A careful study of facts will eliminate the false from 
the tnie^ and when that is done there is always an advance. 

The subject of maternal impressions is one of deepest in- 
terest to every human being, and it will be of lasting benefit 
to the welfare of posterity. The importance .of its study 
cannot be overestimated, as its operation is closely interwoven 
into the very warp and woof of our social life ■ important to 
each parent and expectant parent, as the welfare of those who 
are nearest and dearest to them is at stake, and which^ con- 
cerns all mankind. 

Some minds refuse io be influenced by their environ ment. 
It is as if they were bound with bands of steel within a cer- 
tain line of thought and action, and iti spite of influences 
thrown around them to turn them in the right direction, per- 
sist in following their own inclinations. This is only in 
obedience to a great law of nature — the law of maternal im- 
pression — "As the mind of the mother is at the time the 
brain structure of the child is being formed, so will the child 
be'' — which law is universal and unchangeable. The history 
of the world and the observation of all who have studied the 
problem, verifies this truth. 

A notable instance is the case of Martin Luther, the great 
reformer, and the hero of the reformation, known in history 


as "The little brown monk." His parents tried to make a 
lawyer out of him, but, filled with piety and benevolence, 
with a sturdy opinion of what he thought was the truth, 
which held him to the idea of a monkish life, preaching and 
praying to save sinners from the wrath to come; and no 
amount of persuasion on the part of his parents or friends, 
could influence him from that which he considered his duty. 

Richard Wagner's parents intended to educate him for a 
minister of .the gospel, but to no purpose. His brain was 
constructed upon harmonic lines, and his thoughts were lifted, 
because of the brain structure, to a higher and grander musical 
plane than had ever been reached by any other composer. Ed- 
ucators are finding out that it is impossible to teach a person 
good morals whose brains are defective; that humanity varies 
greatly in its response to the same stimulus; thus indicating 
various characteristics of organism. 

There is not a community in this broad land, but that 
among its members can be found instances of what some call 
a perverted mind. Oh, no! it is not a perverted mind, it is 
simply doing that, or preferring that, for which its brain is 
best adapted, and in the attempt to raake a preacher, or a 
watchmaker, out of what is intended for a section hand or a 
well digger, is an attempt to subvert nature, and the result is 
failure. It is like trying to fit a round peg into a square hole. 
To elevate and ennoble the race, the mothers must be sancti- 
fied; sanctified in the sense that she must be taught her pow- 
ers and capabilities, as well as her duty to herself, her off- 
spring, and society. 

The uselessness of trying to teach, or instill, ideas that 
are to be permanent, into a brain which is by nature created 
upon a different line, is well illustrated by an anecdote of two 
scientists who were discussing the question: "Which is the 
strongest, nature or art?" The one who contended that 
education could overcome natural instincts, and that art was 
the most powerful, to prove his position said: "I have a cat, 
in whom I have so overcome her nature, that she will, at my 


bidding, sit upon her haunches, and hold a candle for me to 
read by." The scientist who held that nature was more pow- 
erful, in reply said: *'That is good evidence, I will call and 
see that cat." A few days later he called, with a covered dish 
under his arm^ and placed it upon the table. The cat was 
called and ordered to hold the candle. It did sOp and while 
in that position the cover was taken from the dish and three 
mice jumped out of it; the cat dropped the candle and chased 
the mice, clearly proving that nature (the cat's nature to 
catch mice), was stronger than art. 

The old adage is applicable: "You can lead a horse to 
water, but you cannot make him drink." You cannot teach 
a man that which is good unless his brains are properly con- 
structed, and that must be doue before birth » 



"My belief Is not to be moved, It' should be oom'peUed<,**~-Romanes* 

We may have a great deal of faith in human progress, but 
how, or by what process can man be reformed, under present 
social conditions, is the question uppermost in the minds of 
all workers in the cause of humanity. This is the fundamen- 
tal principle whicL pervades that great organization, the W. 
C. T. U. and its auxiliaries. It is the power behind the chris- 
tian church with its ramifications extending over all heathen, 
as well as civilized lands. It is the principle which forces the 
state to endow colleges, support public schools and eleemosy- 
nary institutions. It gives strength and stability to all secret 
orders whose object is to relieve and assist its members and 
their families. In short, it is the impelling force behind all 
work done to uplift, and which is intended to benefit mankind. 

But many good citizens are bewailing the fact that some- 
thing is lacking; that there is a factor at work which is hind- 
ering moral progress; and the work of the various organiza- 
tions mentioned is not rewarded by that success commensurate 
to the efforts put forth. There is a demand for something 
that will stay the tide of evil in the land. What this some- 
thing is, and the method by which the evil can be overcome, 
is the object sought to be accomplished in this work. 

Judge Hewey, in a recent decision, said, "Until we learn, 
as a people, that there are things of more value to individuals 
and nations than material wealth, crime will increase." 


Some very good people believe, that the gospel will do the 
work for the human dregs which lie at the bottom of society, 
a work that nature has failed to do for them; failed because 
of somebody's neglect to follow God's law of procreation. 
The experience of the i)ast prqves that "something more po- 
tent," must transpire. They must be born with the ability 
to comprehend the teachings of the Saviour, which will en- 
able them to accept the sermon on the mount; to understand 
when they are taught the precepts which are in the bible. 
Unless they have an understanding mind, in other words, the 
proper brain soil, which endows them with such ability, to 
underetand moral teaching, all moral teaching will be in vain. 
It would be like talking Greek to an Apache warrior* 'Tis 
not only necessary that children should be educated, but they 
should be bom with a capacity to imbibe education which 
will elevate them. 

Your belief, your piety, or your sincerity, will not alter 
facts or chatige the laws of God. If, in the sacred bonds of 
marriage, you put the ingredients — impure action, a morbid 
and licentious mind, a corrupt and diseased body— the product 
will not be to your liking; as you have not used a correct 
formula, the result will be a bad product. The same thing 
would happen if impure number three wheat were put upon 
poor soil, and not properly harvested. There would be many 
burs and thistles, with a small quantity of poor grain; noth- 
ing else could be expected. Nature would be false to the 
great law of "Like produces like," which is as certain as the 
earth's revolution; as sure as there is an overruling Provi- 
dence. If your bodies are corrupt, you can be certain your 
child's body will be diseased. Can you expect, if your mind 
is corrupt, that your child's brain will be purer* 

There are some who talk about blind nature, Oh, nol 
Nature is not blind. Her acts are the decreoa of an all-wise 
and unchangeable force, directed by "Him who holds the 
waters of the sea in the hollow of his hands," It is ignorant 
man who is blind; and he has neglected to note the truths 


that are so thickly strewn around him. Helen Gardiner says: 
"Many parents have transmitted evil tendencies to their fallen 
daughter; a tendency to commit acts which they whine about 
as tarnishing the family honor. If they had tied her, hand 
and foot, and thrown her into the river, and expected her to 
save herself, they would not have been more truly responsi- 

The comparatively few optimistic humanitarians who are 
looking at man's present and future, hoping and praying that 
something outside of and beyond the power of man, will 
happen; something transcendental or supernatural, will be 
done; in some occult manner transform and prepare man- 
kind for a future state of glory. Such persons are stumbling 
blocks in the way of the elevation of mankind; they are 
clogs upon the wheels of progress. Many persons wonder at 
what they are pleased to call the decrees of God; fold their 
hands and neglect to study the truths of nature. 

Cowper says: "Truths on which depend our main concern; 
that 'tis our shame and misery not to learn, shine by the side 
of every path we tread, with such a lustre that he who runs 
may read." Then Providence is blamed, not in words, but in 
deeds, by refusing to study God's laws. They simply hope 
that something will do what only action in harmony with the 
laws of an overruling Providence can do. They are so blind 
as to accept conditions as they find them, and in the abstract 
they believe that "Whatever is, is right,'* and make, as it is 
said, the best of it. 

Carry the same idea into the study of God's moral laws, 
and there would be no churches and no christians. It is as 
much our duty to study His laws on the line of reproduction 
as upon the line of morality. They are inseparably linked, and 
one of these laws cannot be disobeyed without a violation of . 
the other. That is to say, impure physical or mental action 
implies a violation of moral law. Do you suppose that God 
will bless you with oflPspring who are better than others, if 
you violate His laws as do other parents? Oh, no! If you 


think SO, yoo are presuming too much, and you will Burely he 

*'Nature is mercilese," There is another false and mis- 
leading ideflj which is, that everything is as ordered by 
divine wilL Such an idea is a species of middle age super- 
stition; as is the expression: "The world is about si^ch a 
world as its creator intended it to be" — and is on a line with 
the remarkj '^It is none of mj business, nor is it my fault, 
that men and women choose, generation after generation, to 
lead evil and sinful lives, which produce so much misery. 
Each and all of these conceptions are in their essence selfish, 
and are but another form of the expression, "I am not my 
brother's keeper.'' He who holds such ideas — and there are 
many of them — figuratively folds his hands, with a self -satis- 
fied air, forgetting, or is ignorant of the fact, that his birth 
was not a special act of nature by which he was introduced; 
that he is well-born is not to be credited to him. It is possi- 
ble that one may be able to point to such a person's own 
1:>rother or sister, who may be endowed with depraved tastes, 
or who may be a criminal or idiotic. Biut such an individual 
rests contented with the idea that it is God's will, and he 
thmks he has nothing to do but to look after his own welfare, 
and prays, "I thank Thee, Oh Lord, that I am not as other 
men." Such arguments and conclusions, if believed by the 
majority of mankind, would arrest all intellectual progress. 
Its tendency would be to retard the elevation of humanity. 
There would be a **Eeversion to type," a retrograde move- 
ment, so far as the moral and mental part of man is concerned. 

Every person is a product of certain conditions, about 
which the individual had nothing to say. All are bom with 
certain defects for which they are not responsible* Every 
brain structure is nature's field, the mother is the agent who 
prepares the soil; environment sows the seeds of thought, 
and the crop depends upon the quality of the soil. If the 
soil is barren, the crop of ideas will be poor. No man ktiows 
what he is capable of under given circumstances. Until he 


ha3 been tempted he does not know his strength or weakness; 
until then, and then only, can he praise himself. 

The optimistic humanitarian may close his eyes, and, like 
the ostrich, hide his head, so that he caiinot see the enemy 
who is stalking toward him; but the wise man will look at 
the facts, and courageously seek to better the conditions. He 
will not sit with folded hands, hoping or expecting that some 
new experiment of an enterprising providence will do for 
him what, under the benign laws of God, man can do for 
himself; and it seems sacrilegious, it is surely superstitious, 
to expect that God will alter or retard the operation of His 
laws, to accommodate those who have violated them. 




['* Accountability/' is the title of one of the most deligrhtf ully humorous poems 
in "liyrics of Lowly Life/* the collected verses of Paul Lawrence Dunbar, the 
ae^TO poet whom Mr. Howells has recently "discovered."] 

Folks ain*t grot no right to censuah othah folks about dey habits; 
Him dat giv* de squir'ls de bushtails made de bobtails f u' de rabbits. 
Him dat built de grreat big mountains hollered out de little valleys, 
Him dat made de streets an' driveways wasn't 'shamed to make de alleys. 

We is all constructed diff'ent, d* ain't no two of us de same; 
We cain't he'p ouah likes an' dislikes, ef we's bad we ain't to blame. 
Ef we's good, we needn't show off, 'case you bet it ain't ouah doin'. 
We gits into cu'ttain channels dat we jes' cain't he'p pu'suin'. 

But we all fits into places dat no othah ones could fill. 
An' we does de things we has to, big er little, good er ill. 
John cain't tek de place o' Henry, Sue an' Sally ain't alike; 
Bass ain't nothln' like a sukah, chub ain't nothin' like a pike. 

When you come to think about it, how it's all planned out, it's splendid. 
Nutbln's done er evah happens, d'out hit's somefln' dat's intended; 
Don't keer whut you does, you has to, an' hit sholy beats de dickens— 
Viney, go put on de kettle, I got one o' mastah's chickens. 

It is well known to students of mental diseases, that a 
person of depraved habits has an abnormal or deficient brain; 
that is, he is deficient in moral will-power. As all mental action 
is caused by brain action, it is perfectly logical to assert that 
he lacks the brain substance with which to overcome the ab- 
normity or the mental disease. Why did nature, in the case 
of a mentally diseased person, produce an unbalanced brain? 
Because the mother's mind was morally deficient, and her 
thoughts interfered with the process, during the development 
of the structure, which otherwise would have brought a nor- 


mal brain into existence. If immoral ideas occupied her 
mind for a short period only, or she was very strongly inv 
pressed with them momentarily, then the victim will have 
periodical attacks of what may be called a m^nia to do wrong. 
(See the case of a prominent man under head of "Criminal- 
ity," chapter 29.) 

If the mother's mind lingered upon, and she delighted to 
indulge in* immoral acts, then her child would necessarily be 
immoral at all times. "Like must beget like." Is a person 
who is the product of such a mother, responsible for aberra- 
tions which society calls sin, or which are punished as crimes? 
Does such an one deserve human or divine punishment? And 
does it make any difference, as to the responsibility of the 
individual, whether the tendency came from a near or remote 
ancestor? To all of these questions we would say, no! Nor 
was the individual conscious of its mental condition while its 
mother was constructing the brain, and it was totally ignorant 
of the effect upon its life and character. It was no more 
aware of it than a dog could know or prevent the formation 
of a brain which would endow it with the instincts of a dog; 
it had no choice in its make-up. Neither can the individual 
organism change its natural character. It is true, it can, by 
its ejivironment, subdue, or cover up, as it were, its mental 
deformities, providing it is conscious of its weakness. 

Is there anything accidental or unnatural in the impulse 
to. do wrong, or the desire to do right? Decidedly not! But 
there are some who say that the instinct to do right was im- 
planted by the "Grace of God," and that the desire to do 
wrong is caused by the malice of satan. 

The logic of such a position places the responsibility upon 
an all-wise and overruling Providence, and it cannot be main- 
tained by any logical argument which will stand the test of 
analysis. Society rids itself of responsibility by such sophis- 
try; closes its eyes and folds its arms, seemingly unconscious 
of the fact that the fault lies in our social system, viz: a lack 
of the proper education of the coming mothers, and society 


shifts til 6 respotisibility upon the ruler of the universe* 
Qliver^ Wendell Holmes said: ^'Society finds that it is easier 
to hang a troublesome fellow; consign a soul to perdition, or 
save it by saying masses, than to blame itself or to make the 
proper effort for improvement/' 

We recognize bodily defects, as well as defects of the in- 
tellect, and know at onco whether a person is bright or dull, 
capable or incapable of reasoning, but never think of the 
moral power ; whether the individual has the brain power to 
resist the temptation to do wrong. Some men are so consti- 
tuted that they have no knowledge or sense of right and 

Dr. Thomson says: "Habitual criminals are without moral 
sense. They are true moral imbeciles in the presence of 
temptation ; they have no self-control against criminal acts. ' 

, - , , Out of five hundred murderers that I have known, *j 

only three of them ever experienced any remorse, . , - - On 1 

a close acquaintance of eighteen years with criminals, I con- J 

sider nine out of ten are of inferior intellect. Their inferiority ^ 

is occasioned by a mental weakness, owing to defective devel- 
opment." ^ 

Maudsley, in his work, "Responsibility in Mental Diseas- j 

es," saysr "Take the case of *Burton/ a youth of eighteen, 
tried for murder in England in 1863, who said he had a desire 

to kill some one The first person he met was a boy, 

whom he knocked down and then cut his throat. When he 
was sentenced to death by Justice Whightman, the prisoner 
said, *Thank you, my Lord.' He was an instinctive murderer, 
as is a tiger instinctively blood- tliir sty." 

Note the case of Thomas Waitiwright, the poet and writer^ 
who was convicted of murder in Philadelphia. There were ' ■ 
no criminals or lunatics among his ancestors; he was the 
companion of poets, philosophers^ and musicians; a journalist 
and author. A.^ to hie moral character , it was of the lowest 
stamp; a moral imbecile; an instinctive criminal. Scientists 
called him a '^Congenital criminal*" He was asked, '*How 


could yon kill Helen Abercrombie?" his reputed wife. He 
answered, "Upon my soul, I do not know." 

Various criminals said to Lombroso, the Italian criminol- 
ogist: "There are times when we cannot restrain ourselves; 
we must' steal." 

A man aged sixty was confined for criminal assault upon 
a child eight years old. He said his prayers while in jail, 
morning and evening, and complained, that some of the 
other prisoners shocked him with their profanity. 

Martha L. Clarke, who is matron of an eastern reforma- 
tory says of a boy in her charge: "Some day he will commit 
murder, though he is no more responsible than is the dog 
who knows it is wrong td bite, but does it." 

Prof. Serge, in describing a boy-murderer, says: "Nothing 
is acquired by education; everything is congenital; his father 
and mother were sober people; he was not untruthful, had no 
vices. Wiien fifteen years old he sat by his sister, who was 
ten years old; a hammer lay at his feet, he took it up and 
crushed her skull." 

The common excuse for the commission of murder, is 
either avarice^ revenge, jealousy or partizan motive. Holmes 
said, in his confession, the impelling force was "An inborn 
desire to kill;" it was his "Dominant passion." He killed for 
the pleasure of killing. And the theory that men are good 
or bad, or are indifferent, according to their education, falls 
to the ground, in this, as well as many other immoral acts. 

Nor does the theory of heredity hold good. Referring to 
Holmes, who had killed eight persons, his father and grand- 
father were honest New Hampshire farmers; bom on the 
same farm, and left an enviable record for honesty and simple 
goodness. His progenitors on his mother's side were of 
christian habits. Holmes was an entire contradiction of her- 
edity and atavism. Neither of those theories account for 
some of the darkest crimes in history. Referring to the case 
of Jesse Pomeroy, the fourteen year old murderer, it was a 
direct contradiction of heredity. His parentage was good. 



Bis father was a butcher, and his mother at the trial testified 
that before his birth she loved to go to the slaughter house 
to see them kill the cattle — delighted to see the blood flow. 
There is no doubt but that maternal impression was the main 
factor in his case. 

All investigation in the cause of criminality lead to the 
same conclusion — "That the impulse to commit crime is con- 
geaital" — that is, it is inborn. "They are unable to restrain 
themselves from committing the crime." Why? Because 
the criminal's brain is abnormally develoi)ed. Their nature 
is to steal or murder, and they do not stop to think of the 
penalty. They lack a sentiment of wrong, though with a 
^ clear perception of it. You might* as well expect to kill a 
crop of weeds growing in your garden by cutting off a few 
of the flowers, as to expect to eradicate criminal inclinations 
which are ingrained into the very warp and woof of the 
nature of men who are bom with a desire to commit crime. 

"There are wolfish natures, whose instinct is to leap and 
devour. To such men mercy is a mockery, and humanity a 
name for food. They are the cannibals of civilized life, and 
live upon their fellows." An attempt to reason with them is 
as futile as to argue with a crazy man. 

When a man has become a thief through environment; 
that is, has been educated and trained by some "Fagan," he 
may become penitent and converted, and through a change of 
i^nvironment overcome his acquired habits, providing his 
liatural inclinations are honest. But if naturally honest it is 
doubtful as to whether the "Fagans" would have spent much 
time with him, as they would quickly discover whether he 
would take to thieving naturally or not. A teacher very soon 
discovers the leading traits in any pupil that is in his charge. 
**Lunatics and criminals are manufactured, as -are steam en- 
^- 1, gines or clothes." But the process is more complex, and we 
are unable to study it as we can the manufacture of an article 
for the use of man. The engine is made by the skill of manr; 
the criminal by an operation of a law of nature; had the law 


been obeyed, or had it not been obstructed, a normal intellect 
would have been the result, and heredity would have played 
its part in the development of the brain structure. 

No student of mental diseases has any doubt that the 
cause of criminality is largely the effect of disorder of a 
bodily organ, viz: The brain; no matter what opinion there 
may be, pro or con, in regard to what the mind is, or its na- 
ture; that is not the subject under discussion. Mental dis- 
orders are the result of nervous conditions, and they are con- 
nected with the nervous system, whose seat is in the brain. 

"A man thinks, feels, desires and acts according to the 
anatomical construction of his brain." Dr. Mclntyre, upon 
**Insanity and heredity," says: "The ego is directly influ- 
enced by parental thought and action prior to its birth, and 

the insane person is irresponsible for his condition 

The modern spirit of unrest is an evidence of insanity in 
society, caused by thoughts, impulses, and actions in vogue 
before this generation was born." 

The last paragraph shows that Dr. Mclntyre had an ink- 
ling, at least, of the idea of maternal impression, but not a 
line can be found where he states the fact. He ascribes it 
all to heredity. 

As we look at our present social system, the question nat- 
urally arises. Will it not be worse in the next generation? It 
is impossible to answer this metaphysical question correctly, 
and therefore useless to waste any time over it. 

It has been said in criticism of Dr. Mclntyre's statement, 
that "This is carrying the law of heredity too far, and he is 
confounding it with the law of evolution." A careful study 
of the law of evolution and the law of heredity forces one to 
the conclusion that heredity is only one phase of, and is based 
upon, evolution. Heredity is evolution with variations, 
caused by environment, and environment naturally includes 
the mother's mental condition; or, to state it in another form, 
environment induces the mother's notions, her likes and dis- 
likes. Such mental changes on the part of the mother warps 


or twists, adds to or takes from, retards or increases the brain 
structure of her prospective child, thus shaping it in accord- 
ance with her moods and tenses. 

Dr, Mclntyre's critics admit that insanity is imperfectly 
Ttuderstood, and they have no facts upon which to base their 
objections. Then how unfair it is to say that maternal im- 
pression ia not a factor in insanity, when there is no evidence 
to offset the argument; when the facts are favorable to the 
theory. At least they seem to be facts by the continued 
repetition of the phenomena. 

The only argument which is brought to bear by the op,- 
posers of maternal impression is, that it frees the individual 
from the responsibility of his actions, and destroys his will; 
makes him a mere machine. No! Not a mere machine. He 
wills to do aa he does, because his will is controlled by his 
organism; as he wills to cover his body to protect him from 
cold; as he wills to eat certain foods, because he likes them; 
and as he wills not to drink particular liquids, only because 
his organism does not relish them. Nor can he help it if it 
makes him kick to eat cheese or honey. 

In one sense it does destroy his free will. His brain 
structure being abnormal, that is, in an insane person. It 
frees him from the moral responsibility of his acts, and this 
fact is widely recognized in every civilized land, by the care 
which is taken of the imbeciles. But it does not free him 
from his responsibility to society. This fact is also recognized 
by the restraint which the state puts upon those who are 
weak-minded and demented. Neither is a wild animal re- 
sponsible for its acts, because it is its nature, placed there by 
an all- wise creator. But man says that a wild cat or a rattle- 
snake is dangerous to the comfort and peace of himself, his 
family and his friends, and the dangerous creature is de- 
stroyed or imprisoned. The same idea underlies all laws 
governing crime as well as dementia. 

A great satirist has said: "Great wits to madness are near 
allied;" and another writer. Max Nordau has tried to show 


that most human beings are "Degenerate." Insanity, in a 
greater or lesser degree, has been charged to all great men, 
poets, philosophers, inventors, warriors, statesmen and preach- 
ers, and the dullards are apt to class a man as eccentric. By 
this they mean that he is a little cracked, if he has a useful 
or a semi-useful idea in his head. 

Bob Burdette said: "My son, if you can't answer a man's 
argument, call him a crank, it settles the whole question." 
The best definition of a crank that we have ever heard is: 
"It is always the other fellow." 

So the conclusion is, that a man is solely responsible just 
so far as his acts are detrimental to the welfare of society; 
and it is right and proper that the state should protect itself 
from his acts, in the most efiFectual manner. 




*^Eotr nhall th» love of God iH^ understood by Uko«e wlio have been nurtured 
In sigbt only of tbc iiree^ of maii?^" 

There is said to be *'A chemistry of character;" nature 
furnishes the materials and the mother is the chemist who 
mixes the ingredients which form the basis of character. K 
the ingredients which are to make np the organism of a 
future individual are intelligently comx>ounded, the result 
must be a good product. 

The ablest and wisest, as well as many of the humblest in 
the land, are trying to instill into the masses a voluminous 
dose of moral ethics that many oE them are as unable to 
understand as a savage is the rule of three. It is impossible 
to make a barbarian or his compeer — the man with a brutish, 
vicious nature, who can be found in nearly all communities — 
comprehend the teaching of morality. The golden rule he 
knows nothing about. There is an entire absence of any good 
ideas, and he is the slave of his paBsions. There is a cause 
for the mental status of such individuals. Their brains are 
not properly constructed. They are not to blame for the 
brain substance with which they are endowed, and can no 
more resist the inclination of their minds than they can help 
breathing. Nothing can instruct them in their duty to 
society ; there is no way to change their innate desires. The 
brain structure is deformed. The brain soil deficient in 
quality or quantity, and such a deiiciency is as real, although 


unseeii, as is a crooked hand or a missing foot. Such persons 
are moral idiots. They have no conception of justice or 
morality; like the man who is born blind has no idea 
of size or color. Because of pre-natal influences (and in 
deference to those who believe in heredity, I will add hered- 
ity), they are weak-willed and are exceedingly plastic to im- 
moral environment. It is observed that such natures are not 
so amenable to good influences, good company and clean 
minds, but they imbibe evil as easily as a sponge absorbs 
water. They are fond of the association of the vicious and 
the impure. Society calls them morally weak. There is 
some faulty condition of the nerve centers. The brain struc- 
ture} is abnormal. Look at some of the denizens in the slums 
of our large cities, whose pitiful lives are surrounded by the 
dark forms of sin and want, suffering and despair; who have 
learned to lisp curses, never blessings; whom evil brands for 
its own ere they draw the first breath. When crime is pun- 
ished in such a person, it should not be forgotten that it is 
not sin that is punished, but a wrong to society. The bom 
criminal does not commit what he calls sin; he is performing 
the part allotted to him in a drama, where life is a tragedy, 
in which he is compelled to play a part through no fault of 
his own. The fault lies in the improper education of the 
mother, and the blame rests upon society in neglecting to 
properly educate her. No mother, with true motherly in- 
stincts, would consciously or intentionally produde a wicked 
child, but if her education has been neglected, it is not her 
fault. Right here the question arises. Would you advise that 
criminals should not be punished for their misdeeds? No! 
A thousand times No! TKe unreformable criminal — and ac- 
cording to prison statistics, six out of seven male criminals 
are of that class — should be placed in confinement, as are 
other imbeciles, and kept there until God, in His mercy, calls 
them to their long home. We are not in duty bound to let a 
bom criminal go free because he is unfortunate in his make- 
up. It is his nature to commit crime. If a lion were loose 


in the community we would ask, first, Is there danger? then 
put it where it could do no harm. 

The concensus of opinion of all students of criminology is 
that the bom criminal cannot be reclaimed any more than a 
man who is born blind can be made to see, An instinctive 
criminal should be Sequestered because he ie dangerous to the 
commonwealth; he m incapable of reformation. If at any 
time an idea of good morals enters his head, he soon forgets 
the lesson. The community has too long ministered to the 
degradation of its own members through ignorance of natural 

It is useless to teach a boy a business for which ho has no 
taste, and lay down a set of rules which he cannot compre- 
hend, for the purpose of making a business man of him, when 
ha prefers to raise cattle or work on a railroad; or to attempt 
to make a preacher out of one that was intended for a black- 
smith or shoemaker, 

*'To Newton ftud to Newton's dog^ Diamond, what a different pair of unlv^raes.'* 

Neither can you make a boy honest by good instruction 
if he is born with a desire to steal; and the advice to him 
that he should choose good company, when he prefers the 
low and depraved, will do no good, except, perhaps, to make 
him a hypocrite, pretendiug to be what he is not* What one 
longs to be, that he is at heart. 

Here is the style of a man, upon 
whom all moral teaching is like casting 
pearl before swine, and the humanitar- 
ian's labor is all in vain; he is a low- 
browed, weazel-eyed ruffian, with hang- 
dog features and a swaggering manner. 
Such a man has the ravenous nature of 
the wolf, combined with the disposition 
of a cur dog, which makes him lazy, a 
bully and a coward, morally and physically; his head is made 
for butting, not for thinking. 


Compare the man who has never needed moral teaching. 
He would have been good if reared 
among savages. He is full to over-flow- 
ing with charity and good will to all men. 
His whole demeanor proves that his 
tastes and desires are of a high order. 
As for morality, he has so much of it 
that he can spare some for his weaker 

What good would all moral lectures do for a man who as 
a boy was stupid, sullen and ugly, with a spirit of disobedi- 
ence pervading his whole being? He develops into a man 
with a bullet head, heavy brows, narrow and low forehead, 
wide mouth and jaws, teeth prominent, coarse featured, with 
the appearance of a bull dog. "Beast" is indelibly stamped 
upon his countenance. He can no more imbibe or under- 
stand the principles of morality — do unto others as you would 
be done by — than he can fly. The right or the wrong of an 
act is no part of his thoughts; everything relatively good, 
merged into a slough of sensuality. His brain was developed 
under abnormal conditions, and it is full of immoral prin- 
ciples; he has no conception of justice and mercy; is cruel 
and vindictive. He is of that class who will, in a fit of anger, 
murder his own child in its mother's lap, and who will drag 
his wife around the room by the hair and beat her brains out 
with a poker. The composition of his brain is abnormal and 
constructed upou wrong lines; no amount of humanitarian 
work or education can change it. 

The reader is requested not to infer that preaching, pray- 
ijig, moral lectures and humanitarian work should be aban- 
doned; upon the contrary, there is a large class who are of 
medium nature, neither good or bad. Many persons have 
strong inclinations, one way or the other — they are real good 
or very bad. Between these two extremes are the many to 
whom the teaching of good morals is a necessity, and the 
Christian philanthropist should use judgment and not waste 


From the Towa Ilcnith Bulletin, published by the State Board of Health, 
Dcs Moiucs, November, 1896. 


The Study of physical and mental deformities is a far-reaching, inter- 
esting, and important one. The suggestions of Mr. Bayer commend 
thcmselTcs to all students of heredity, and this Board would be glad to 
aid in any manner^ consistent with its general duties, in the prosecution 
of that study* 

Dr. J. F. Kennedy, Secretary. 

'*A great new world looms into sight, like some splendid ship, long 
waited for: The world of heredity, of pre-natal influence, the greatest 
right of which we cati conceive — ^the right of a child to be well bom — is 
bdi2g slowly, surely recognized." Frances E. Willard. 




The trader will bear" in mind that tlie caiei cited in the follft wing 
chapters are not culled from other works, but are personal investiga- 
tions giTcn to the author by mothers, in the hope that, through their 
experience, other mothers may pro£t and theif ofispring be benefited. 

Thb Author, 







•»The essential reason of abnormal brain action is abnormal brain structure, 
and the application of this truth will create a revolution in ethics and Jurispru- 
dence."— Dr. Jacobi, 

"It is impossible to explain the process by which the delicate meehanism of 
the human brain is constructed. It is onlj a few inches in diameter, weighs about 
forty-nine ounces and contains millions of cells. The grray matter is the substra for 
evolvingr tens of millions of separate ideas, without conscious friction or pain, if 
properly organized or not interfered with." 

In the study of this subject a pertinent question to be 
considered is, Do certain portions of the braki substance 
regulate and control the mental faculties? It is a funda- 
mental question, therefore an important one, and if decided in 
the negative, there will be no use for further argument. But 
a negative decision seems impossible, in the present state of 
knowledge we have of the brain structure. We concede that 
the subject is hypothetical — proven by analogy, and inferred 
by the effect which is produced. No anatomist has presumed 
to say just what nerve center governs the various emotional 
functions of the brain, or where the various nerve centers are 
located. That all physical peculiarities of man's nature are 
controlled by a part of the brain substance has been known a 
long time, and the exact location of many, with their eflFect 
upon the physical nature of man, is an open book to the 



In order to get an idea of the constructioa of the brain, it 
will be necesBary to examine some author! ties. All agree that 
the nervea end in the centers; these centers compose the gray 
mntter, and this gray substance is easily acted upon by ex- 
ternal influences of every kind. Some writers describe the 
gray matter as differing in different regions. Dr, Le^fis says; 
"In the motor area it consists of five layers. This gray mat 
ter is the organ of the mind." 

Gray's Anatomy, in describing the nerves and the gray 
matter says: "It may be compared to the top of a tree with 
two branches, one for each side of the brain. .... These 
branches break into smaller ones; these into twigs; at the 
ends leaveSj forming a covering for the whole. But here the 
analogy ends, for, in addition to these leaves, there are other 
masses of gray matter, which are in the middle of the brain. 
... - The white matter consists of fibres of various sizes, 
which are arranged in bundles that may be divided into three 
systems. . , , . The types of gray matter are, fivsf, those with 
eight layers; second, -there is another part in which the third 
and fourth layers are absent, and the second layer contains no 
cells; . . . • iJnrd, a gray matter composed of spindle- 

ahap^ cells, as are found in the fifth layer The 

bulb consists of gray and white matter. The lower part is 
the gray; this part refers to or controls the sense of smell." 
Whether Dr. Gray, by this, means that the lower part of the 
entire white and gray matter is used in governing the sense 
of smell, is not clearly explained. This is a brief and con- 
densed statement of an eminent authorityt and gives one a 
faint idea as to what the gray matter and the cells of the 
brain are, and is suflBcient for this investigation, viz: the 
growth or movement by or through which the brain cells are 
enlarged or decreased — in other words, why the law of hered- 
ity is over-powered, as it were, and in some cases an abnormal 
character developed. If the problem is logically investigated 
it will pave the way to a clearer comprehension of the cause 
why there is so much difference in the brain-power of mem- 



bers of the same family, without being compelled to attribute 
the various peculiarities in man to heredity, atavism or trans- 

"To confine our study to the nervous substance would misrepresent the con- 
nection, and the knowledg-e of that substance, however complete, would not suffice 
for a solution of the problem.*'— Bafn. 

**A11 normal mental action is the result of a healthy brain, action, and all ab- 
normal manifestations of mind are the result of a diseased or deranged brain. . . 
. . A child may be bom idiotic throug-h the influence of a mental shock received 

by the mother There is no doubt that idiocy and other disorders of the 

mind may be induced by strong emotions of the mother. .... Mind is not a fluid 

secretion, it is a force produced Dy nervous action As a galvanic battery 

evolved galvanism so the brain evolves mind If the battery is good, the 

galvanism is good."— Dr, W. A. Hammond. 

The reader should remember that idiocy is not imbecility 
or epilepsy, although they are closely related. The seat of 
the nerves which govern and control the moral and intellect- 
ual nature, including the emotions and desires, is as yet un- 
known. * It is unquestioned that an abnormal brain develop- 
ment may be produced by the mental impressions of the 
mother. Any scare, injury, or anger is liable to aflFect the 
prospective child; and instances innumerable can be cited 
where abnormities were produced without any shock, simply 
thinking of ah injury, or an unusual object; or a desire to 
kill or steal has produced a murderer or thief. The cause of 
much of the criminality of this age will be found due to 
maternal impressions. In short, anything that makes an im- 
pression upon the mother's mind retards or promotes the 
normal growth of the brain cells, which compose the gray 
matter that is intended to control some particular character- 
istic, whatever it may be. 

As it is not essential in this argument, we will proceed 
upon the hypothesis that the mother's mental impressions 
aflFect the forming, plastic brain of her prospective oflFspring. 
The study of such a theory is to be judged beneficial, solely 
by its service in extending the knowledge of the relation of 
the phenomena which it represents. With this in mind, let 
us proceed to an investigation of this theory, and the subject 

■ M 


will be found very interesting. Suppose it were possible to 
examine and watch the growth and development of a living, 
normal hnmaa brain, a few months before birth^ and that a 
careful study of it could be made. It is fair and logical to 
assume that it would be found to be of equal density in both 
hemispheres, that its tendency is to grow in the same degree 
upon both sides, as do the arms, legs and feet. It is also 
proper to assume that a part of this brain structure is for the 
purpose of governing and controlling an essential character- 
istic of the organism which is developing. For example: A 
certain part of this gray matter or brain fibre is intended to 
govern the physical taste of the individual and the cells are 
growing evenly balanced; its normal desire would be for fruits 
or sweets. For illustration, take honey; The mother has a 
normal desire for honey; she e^ts it as she does other articles 
of food tluit she has no especial like or dislike for. The 
mother at this particular time receives a strong mental im- 
pression or disgust for honey^ caused by seeing some that was 
full of dead bees, the sight of which momentarily creates an 
intense dislike for honey— any other article of food would 
illustrate the idea just as well. The mental shock, or the 
mother's impression disarranges the particle of the forming 
brain of her prospective child. ( Rev. Joseph Cook's idea is 
that some of the braiu fibres are crowded from one side of 
the brain to the other, but this is impossible from the struct- 
nre of the brain, it being in two distinct parts). Or, suppose 
the nerve cells which were intended to like honey were 
crowed out of their proper place, and into that place is put 
the nerve cells which dislike honey. Or still another hypoth- 
^is : The nerve cell which is to control the desire or taste for 
honey, by the mental impression of the mother is arrested 
in its development, and that part of the cell which dislikes 
honey is enlarged. That is^ the division of the cell has be- 
come unbalanced, or abnormal, the line of separation between 
the like and the dislike, which would have made a normal 
cell, if evenly divided, would have given the child the same 


desire as its mother, so far as honey is concerned; i. e. a normal 
one. But through the action of the mother's meiitality the 
child is born with an intense dislike for it, so that the taste 
of honey is sickening. 

The question is asked, how are the nerve cells contracted 
or enlarged? How does the mother affect them through her 
mental action? The answer to this is wholly hypothetical^ 
and goes into the realm of the anatomist, in which I can only 
surmise; this is all the most scientific scholar hi that line can 
do. He can make a premise and form a conclusion to suit 
his fancy; this I shall do without making any pretensions as 
to its validity. Ai^ exact knowledge of the cause of brain 
malformation is at the best very indefinite, and must be 
largely conjecture. Bear in mind that the cells and nervos 
connected with them are very minute even in the structure of 
a full-grown person, and for the purpose of illust ration I have 
assumed that they are square, though the fact is they are of 
all conceivable shapes. Future investigation may prove tliat 
each peculiar shape of the cell controls a particular emotion. 
That is to say, anatomists may at some time find that a man's 
propensities are governed by groups of particular-shaped 
cells. If he is immoral there may be masses of cells which 
are of a round shape; if he has a murderous or criminal dis- 
position they may be square, and so on, indefiuitely, Ui>on 
the contrary, if no such cells are found, he will not indulge 
in, nor have any love for wrong doing, but will bnve a desire 
for, or a dislike to a thing or action, in accordance with the 
construction of certain shaped cells. If they are small his 
desires will be weak; if fully developed, he will delight in 
the propensity which the cell is intended to govern . I do not 
wish to be understood that this hypothesis has any basis to 
rest upon, but merely suggest it for some abler miud to 
investigate or wprk out. 

All the cells which govern the taste are located in some 
par!, of the brain; where, is of no consequence m this argu- 
ment. We assume that the taste for each articlti of food is 



controlled by one of these cells, with its accompanying nerve. 
When the taste is normal the cell is equally divided; when^ 
as has been remarked, the dislike is very pronounced, it has 
been unequally divided and more room given to that part of 
the cell which is to hold the gray matter that dislikes the 
particular article of food. The structure of that nerve cell 
is unalterable after birth; it cannot be removed or changed 
by n surgical operation. If not very pronounced, it can be 
restrained by environment, the like or dislike overcome^ but 
completely eliminated, never. It would be the same in the 
case of a nerve cell which is to govern any good or bad moral 
tendency, which accounts for the impossibility of reforming 
the congenital criminal or drunkard. 

This hypothesis and its deduction has at least the merit 
of being logical. It seems impossible to refute the arguraent, 
when the many human monstrosities which are called freaks 
of nature, are studied; where the mind of the mother, by a 
mental operation, has disarranged the atoms of flesh and 
bones which were intended to form a hand, or a foot, and her 
mind, by some process, has cut oflF, as it were, a hand or foot, 
or hag produced some other so called birth-mark. Birth- 
marks are well known, and the presumed causes are under- 
stood by the most ignorant mother in the land. How the 
nerve cells are changed, destroyed, or arrested in their devel- 
opment, is unknown; by what process the mind alters the 
nerve cells of the brain, or changes the structure of the 
flesh and bones, may never be known. Be that as it may, 
the result is what we are looking for — the cause of varie- 
ties in the human intellect. The logical deductions and 
conclusions must be, that the individual whose forming or 
growing brain we have been studying would have had more 
OP less, as the case may be, of brain fibre, or nerve colts, in a 
certain place, than if there had been no mental impression, 
or shock. If there had been nothing to disturb the mother's 
mind, it would have had a normal desire for honey, or a nor- 
mal hand or foot, as the case may be. 



It will be observed that the entire argument rests upon 
the proposition, that the mother has the power to, or does 
shape the brain cells, which is the gray matter, or brain soil, 
that will control the individual's action. If the brain cells 
are largely formed for good actions, and those which are to 
influence the bad actions are shrunken and unable to exert 
any control, then the possessor of that brain will be capable 
of imbibing the good which is taught it. If the cells that 
are to control improper or bad actions are increased, that per- 
son will not understand what is meant when it is taught good 
morals. Whatever the mother elects to have, consciously or 
unconsciously, she will have; a good child, or a bad child; a 
thief and murderer, or one who is good and true. That the 
mother forms and shapes the body of her offspring cannot be 
successfully controverted. The only question is, Does she 
form the brain structure, also? That she does, is undoubted. 

At this point the question arises: Does the father have 
nothing to do in giving form and shape to the offspring? 
The answer is both yes, and no. Yes, if the mother does 
not allow her thoughts to dwell upon some other person or 
thing, or if her mind is not disturbed in any manner, then 
there would be a reproduction of the father's characteristics. 
And no, if the mother continually thinks of some other per- 
son, or thing that does not resemble the father at all. If 
these conclusions are contested, it rests with the objector to 
show that the cases cited in this work are not traceable to 
maternal impressions, and the critic must show by as good 
authority that some other factor was the cause of the various 
abnormities, and the evidence should be as conclusive as that 
which is brought in favor of maternal impressions. 




It 19 apparent to the most careful observer that there are 
certain evils existiag in society which are not accounted for, 
and when commented npon, are excused by the assertion that 
the evils are innate; that they are from natural causes and 
cannot be avoided. Such an answer does not explain the 
cause ; it only emphasizes a fact. If an evil exists that weak- 
ens the ability of any human being to do more good than h© 
is doing under present conditions, or which wholly unfits one 
to perform the duties which every one owes to his fellows, 
then the cause of the evil should be investigated, and dis- 
covered, if possible, so that the evil can be mitigated and 
thus benefit society. 

This leads to the consideration of a grievous wrong, which 
can be largely prevented in the future— the past and present 
cannot be undone. The wrong referred to is the birth of 
blind children, which is mainly the result of ignorance of the 
laws which govern reproduction. At the various institutes 
for the blind in the United States, and it is fair to assume 
that it is the same in other lands^ no efforts are put forth to 
loam the cause of congenital blindness. There are no studies 


or investigations as to the reason why parents who are blessed 
with good eyesight, bring forth children with defective vision 
or who are totally blind. When the vision is defective by 
reason of the various diseases which aflFect a child, at or before 
birth, medical writers and teachers are called upon to give 
instruction how to cure or alleviate the suflFering. But when 
a child is bom blind, the doctor shakes his head, looks wise, 
and mournfully says, too bad! too bad! but makes no eflFort 
to inquire into the cause, and by finding out the cause, prevent 
the birth of others. If the doctor were asked: "Why is the 
child bom blind?" He would probably say: "It is explainable 
by the fact that it has no optic nerve." "But, Doctor, why 
has it no optic nerve, when the rest of the family are all 
normal?" He would no doubt say: "All medical authorities 
agree that when there is no optic nerve the individual is blind 
and there is no remedy." 

At the blind asylums the only record is that a certain per- 
centage of the inmates became blind from disease, or acci- 
dent, but in case of a congenital blind person, the record is 
simply "Bom blind." The causes which produce a child who 
is at birth blind, from parents that are normal, is a subject 
which has not been investigated by those whose duty it would 
seem to be. At least there are no records upon this very im- 
portant subject. Some who are afflicted by such a terrible 
calamity are told that "It is the will of God." • Is it possible 
that a kind and overruling Providence, who cares for the 
humblest of his creatures, should willingly and knowingly 
maim one of them? Without any cause should decree that 
one made in His likeness, and for His glory, should never see 
the beauty of this world, or the face of his loving friends? 
Such argument is, to say the least, illogical, if not blasphe- 

But the question remains, Why are children bom blind, 
when the parents and grandparents are physically sound? 
The wise men who are presumed to instruct the masses, and 
who are continually suggesting means for the physical and 


moral improvement of mankind, are as silent as the grave 
upon this very important question. Important, first and fore- 
most, to the principle sufferers, those of future generations 
who will be born blind unless the conditions which produce 
congenital blindness are understood and counteracted by wise 
and intelligent means, viz: a study of the law which God has 
instituted to govern mothers at such times. Important to 
future parents, who if not taught that certain causes will pro- 
duce certain effects, are bound, in all human probability, to 
produce a number of congenital blind. A neglect to educate 
the mother upon the line of the reproduction of mankind, 
will entail upon such parents much suffering, by the extra 
care and anxiety in the education of blind offspring, to fit 
til em for the battle of life. Important to society, as such an 
education will relieve the state from the charge which now 
rests upon it, for the maintenance of institutions organized 
to care for, and educate those who are blind. The profes- 
sional scientist dismisses the subject of congenital blindness 
by asserting that it is some strain of evil or physical imper- 
fection which has come down through the line of ancestors; 
some far-off long-forgotten or unknown progenitor, even 
though it may be impossible to find one with defective vision 
in the entire line. And the answer is only an excuse for ig- 
norance of previous conditions. When a scientist makes the^ 
above assertion, he overlooks the fact that our ancestors were 
not afflicted to the extent that the present generation is. 
That physical, as well as mental and moral imperfections, 
are increasing, and mankind must be reverting to type; de- 
generating, because it is not conforming to a fundamental law 
of nature. The scientist who asserts that atavism is the 
cnuse, knows that it cannot be demonstrated. And the an- 
swer is, therefore, not scientific. The dim and shadowy past 
furnishes no clue or data, either to prove or disprove, the 
conclusion, and the wise man (?) rests securely upon his lau- 
rt^ls. A study of materology will enable the student to ac- 
quire a logical conception of the cause of the birth of a blind 



child. It will be at least more reasonable than to grope 
among the shades of unknown ancestors, from whom no facts 
can be gleaned, and where the torch of science flickers low 
in its socket; becomes like a tallow dip; and at last is entirely 
extinguished. This kind of so-called science, upon this sub- 
ject, is purely guess-work. 

The states are as indifferent and careless as the scientists. 
A few of them demand that the physician in charge, at the 
birth of a child who is blind or otherwise abnormal, shall, 
within thirty days, make the same report that he does for a 
normal infant. Such a report does not require any reference 
to abnormities, simply the name, sex, color, hour and date of 
birth, parents' ages and nativity; signed by the attending 
physician. Not a line or word is demanded that would lead 
to an investigation of the cause of congenital blindness. 
National and state laws have been passed to prevent and 
eradicate diseases which aflPect live stock, but the disorder 
that produces abnormal human beings is overlooked. The 
state should minister to the comfort of its citizens, and if 
possible, prevent the birth of blind persons. It could be 
done by the proper education of the mothers. No good citi- 
zen will object to laws that will result in preventing the birth 
of imperfect children. Accidents which aflPect the individual 
after birth are not considered in this argument. 

Before passing to a further consideration of the subject, 
let us see how many blind there are in the United States; and 
it is fair to assume that the number will increase in the same 
ratio as they have in the past, unless something is done to 
prevent it. The number of those who are totally blind from 
all causes, as given in the census of the United States, is as 
follows: There were in 1850, 9,724; in 1860, 12,658; in 1870, 
20,928; in 1880, 48,928; in 1890, 50,568. No data was found 
of the number of those born blind in 1850, 1860 and 1870, 
but in 1880 there were 4,027; in 1890, 4,267. These figures 
are appalling, and should awaken an interest in the question 
as to what can be done to prevent the production of blind 



children. We unhesitatingly assert that it can only he done 
hy the proper education of the coming mother s^ by teaching 
the great danger to their offspring, of allowing their minds 
to dwell upon blind C5a8es, or if shocked by an accident to 
themselves, or others, which may arrest development, they 
should be taught how to assist nature to overcome such ar- 
rested development, while the mother is in the condition en- 
tailed upon her sex, and which is so important to the family 
and society. They must be taught bow to overcome the 
mental disturbances which are apt to worry them at such 

To one who gives the subject a few moments thought, it 
would eeem that the state should demand, in tbe case of the 
birth of an abnormal child, that the attending physician in- 
vestigate the predisposing cause which may have produced 
the abnormal development. A collection of such reports 
would be a nuclei ux)on which to base a conclusion, 

The following is the skeleton of a law which should be 
placed upon the statute books of every state in tbe union: 
Be it ftnacttdy etc : 

It shaU be the duty of every physician, and of every midwife, wlitjii 
professionally attending the birth of a child, to make a record of the 
same. Said record shall embrace the date of birth, color, sex, given 
name If possible, (so that in case of an abnormity which is not apparent 
at birth, it can be traced for future study), age and color of parents, 
resideniie, (if in a city, street and number, if In the country, location of 
parents' home as accurate as possible). If normal report yea; If ab- 
normal, the attending physician shall give as full and complete a descrip- 
tion as possible; interview the mother as to the presumed causes which 
may have produced the abnormity, and send the same to the State Board 
of Heatth within thirty days. In the case of a congenital deaf child, or 
an epileptic, which cannot be known at its birth, it shall be the duty of 
the parents, as soon as they discover that the child is abnormal, to report 
It to the State Board of Health, giving date of birth, for the purpose of 
pablic record. 

Be it further enacted : That whenever a woman applies for admission 
as a visitor at a public asylum, it shall be the duty of the superintendent 
in c]>arge, to hand such a person a circular in which the danger to any 
prospective mother is plainly stated, before she is admitted as a visitor 
to the wards. 


A record of abnormal cases would enable the public to 
leam the cause of the birth of blind children, as well as other 

The following cases will illustrate what ignorance of the 
effect of maternal impressions has done in the production of 
blind children; and will ^Isd illustrate what is necessary to 
teach all prospective mothers, and how easy it is for an igno- 
rant mother to do an irreparable injury to her offspring: 

^ Mrs. R. of W. gave birth to a blind child. It was ascer- 
tained that within the year preceding its birth, she visited 
the blind asylum at Janesville, Wis., was deeply impressed 
by the blind persons she saw there. Her sympathies were 
aroused by their condition, and their appearance was contin- 
ually in her mind. She was not aware of the effect it would 
have upon her prospective child. No near or distant relatives 
of Mrs. R. are blind, on either side, so that heredity or atav- 
ism cannot be a factor in this case. 

W. C. of G.: Born blind in one eye, the other normal. 
The blind one was a small white eyeball without any pupil. 
Some months before the birth of this child, the father was af- 
flicted with sore eyes. The mother repeatedly dressed them, 
and worried over her husband's lamentable condition, not 
alone because of his sufferings, but of his inability to provide 
for his family, which consisted of four children, all with sound 
eyes. There are no blind ancestors in the family. 

Mrs, T. of M., a number of months before the birth of a 
child, was frying sausage meat, a particle of hot fat struck 
her in the eye, which pained her severely for a short time, like 
a burn or a scald; it was enough to arrest the development. 
The babe was bom with one defective eye; the eye-ball pro- 
truding so much as to disfigure her. This was her second 
child, the first and the four children bom later, all had sound 
eyes. There can be no doubt but that the child's defective 
eye was the result of maternal impression in this case. 

In these illustrations, the evidence of maternal impres- 
sions is so positive that no other conclusion as to the cause, 


can be entertained. If those mothers had been taught the 
danger of their mental impressions to the child, and how to 
overcome the arrested development, who is prepared to assert 
that these children would not have had normal eyeB? Re- 
verting to the impressions of Mrs. R. and Mrs. C— leaving 
out that of Mrs. T., as that was caused by a shock^MiB. R. 
with her sympathies aroused by the inmates o£ the blind asy- 
lum; and Mrs. C. with an interest' in her husband and his 
sufferings. It is surely more logical to assume that the defective 
eyes of these children were caused by pre-natal impressions, 
than to base the phenomena upon the theory of heredity or 
atavism; that it was a strain of imperfect organism which 
came down from somewhere — no one has any idea where. A 
rational conclusion is, that the defects were caused by maternFil 
impressions, the same causes which produce other physical 
deformities (birth-marks). They are well known to the most 
illiterate to be caused by the mother's mental impressions 
while the child is in a formative stage. 





"Facts and opinions in regard to the deaf in America; 
hereditary deafness — and the tendency, from the intermar- 
riage of deaf mutes, to form a deaf mute variety," is taken 
from a work by Prof. Bell, of telephone fame, published in 
1888. It says: "The investigation was begun to find out the 
cause of the birth of deaf mutes. Circular letters were sent 
to the principals of all schools for the deaf in the United 
States and Canada." 

In 1880 there were 12,155, who were bom deaf, reported 
in the census of the United States. 

It was claimed by some, that the marriage of deaf mutes 
would produce deaf mutes, but that theory is not sustained 
by any proof whatever. The superintendent of the Illinois 
asylum for the deaf reports a striking fact, that only twelve 
out of the four hundred and fifty inmates, had deaf parents. 
Out of these two hundred and seventy-two married deaf 
persons, twenty-one married those not deaf. They all have 
children — some of them large families — and the total is six- 
teen deaf children in the entire lot. Some have one deaf, the 
rest all normal. 

The superintendent of the Minnesota asylum reports that 
in the thirty-six years of his labors among the deaf, he saw 
but very few cases of the deaf transmitting the infirmity. 
Not a child received in the twenty-two years that he has been 
there, had deaf mute parents. 


The Utah Buperintendent of the asylum for the deaf, re- 
ports that he does not know of a case of deaf parents haying 
deaf mute children, 

Prof. Bell came to no conclusions as to the cause of the 
birth of deaf mutes. He could not find the cause and makes 
a statement to that effect. There is nothing in the report to 
show that Prof. Bell made any personal investigation at the 
fountain head; that is, did not interview any of the mothers. 

There is very strong evidence against the hereditary 
transmission of deafness, which, if Prof. Weismann had 
added to his argument, would have made a powerful case 
against the transmission of acquired characters^ but the in- 
ference to be drawn from all writers uiK>n heredity, is, that 
they depended more upon laboratory methods and their 
library, than upon a personal investigation of the individuals, 
or of the family history and the influence which environment 
may have had upon the mother before the birth of her deaf 

It is possible to prove almost anything if the line of in- 
vestigation is carefully chosen, and then restricted to that 
line. After proving that heredity did not transmit deafness, 
in a case under investigation, then to neglect to find out how 
the deafneBS did come about, leads to a false concluBioo. Up 
to this point the inquiry and the result only corroborates a 
fact, and would be the same as if a deaf mute should report 
that he was not deaf at birth, and should stop there. That 
would not enlighten the investigator as to the cause of his 
infirmity ; so that in all the investigations of the problem, all 
factors should be considered; the neglect to examine any one 
of them may lead to a wrong conclusion. In making an in- 
vestigation of family history among the deaf mutes, there is 
a strange reluctance to give information, and there are others 
who have no intelligent knowledge, or idea, as to the cause or 
the circumstances which produced the infirmity. 

In the early settlement of Kansas, on the frontier, a colony 
of deaf mutes was started. They flocked from the hills of 




New England, from the plains of the middle states, and from 
the sunny south, to form a race of deaf mutes. The colony 
had a deaf mayor, deaf councilmen, and the experiment 
seemed likely to suceeed. But alas! The children were 
mostly normal. Where is that colony now? Ask the winds! 

According to heredity the intermarriage of deaf mutes 
should produce a race of deaf mutes, but it does not. The 
question then arises. Why not? Why is the law of heredity 
overthrown or hindered? It is fair and logical to assume 
that the undiscovered factor which every writer upon heredity 
says is unknown, the missing link necessary to form a com- 
plete chain of logical evidence, is the mother's mentality, or 
maternal impressions. It cannot be successfully contradicted 
that the deaf mute, blind, crippled, and idiotic unfortunates, 
who were born so, are the result of a violation of some 
natural law. It may have been a conscious or an unconscious 
violation on the part of the parent, but it nevertheless was 
an interference, or there would not have been anything out 
of the usual order of nature. 

A case of the birth of mutes is given here. The writer 
called on the family of Mr. S. M., of A., Dec. 25, 1896. They 
have four children. The two oldest can hear but cannot talk. 
They make guttural sounds which they understand. The 
mother said that before the birth of the oldest, a cousin was 
taken sick with spinal fever, and when he recovered, had lost 
his speech; it worried her at the time. It is easy to account 
for the second boy, as the mother worried over the fact that 
her first child could not talk. Both of these children are 
bright and intelligent, normal in every other way. The two 
younger children, a boy and a girl, can both hear and talk. 
Not a single member of the family on either side of the 
parents but is normal. Such a case is known as Aphasia. I 
have only found three recorded in medical literature. 

There are some who argue that the disuse of the organ of 
hearing may be the cause of deafness, but that argument is 
illogical. Excessive use might be the cause after birth. It 


certaiuly could not produce the infirmity before the child was 
able to have the organs of hearing afiFected by extraordinary 
noisea which could only injure the drum of the ear. Such an 
argument would be on the line of maternal impressions, that 
the mother was affected, which produced the infirmity in her 
offspring. An illustration to show the effect of maternal im- 
pression as the cause of deafness: Mrs. C. of P. was called to 
the bedside of a dying sister who without warning was stricken 
by death. She was perfectly well the preceding day. As 
Mrs. C. arrived at the home and stepped to the bedside of the 
sister, took her by the hand and spoke to her, the mother, 
who stood at the foot of the bed, said, "She carmot hear you, 
she is deaf." Mrs. C. dropped to the floor unconscious, that 
is, fainted. Five months later a child was born, wlio proved 
to be deaf, unable to hear a single word. The singular part 
of this case is: That this deaf child can hear tapping upon 
the door, or stove pipe, when she is in any part of the housej 
she can hear the whistle of a locomotive, as well as some other 
noises. What are the deductions in this case? That the 
mother's mind was affected by the fact of the inability of her 
sister to hear her voice; that in her swoon she so affected the 
nerve cells, or as it were, arrested the development of those 
cells which govern the ability to distinguish the human voice. 
But it did not wholly destroy the cells, through which she 
hears other sounds. No other cause than mental impression 
can be assigned. 





"Who are you?" "I am a product of our Christian civilization, sir; I am a tramp." 

The tramp problem is a subject which has created more 
general discussion, and has been treated with greater unan- 
imity of opinion than any other social problem. To the 
student of criminology, as well as to all other good citizens, 
it is a serious question. Public meetings are called, and the 
subject of trampism creates an interest which is renewed and 
intensified by every recurring outrage committed by some 
of these vagabondish characters. 

At the many anti-tramp conventions, the usual result is 
"a^demand that they be put upon the rock pile, or into the 
work houses, to commit and detain them, and the cry is, 
"Make them earn their living." No attempt is made, or sug- 
gestion given, how to stop the supply, and then reform those 
who are already tramps, if it is possible to reform them. I 
do not believe that it is possible to reform the instinctive 
tramp, any more than the instinctive criminal can be reformed. 

Many schemes are set on foot and societies organized, to 


enable good citizens to discriminate between those who are 
bom tramps and those who are really in search of work. So 
far no iron-clad mle has been found which will enable a per- 
son to judge between a worthy and an unworthy case; nor 
will such a rule ever be found in a republic where passports 
are unknown, and a ticket of leave is illegal The debatable 
qu^tion is not how to stifle the beggar's cry, but how to deal 
with it. Then study how to prevent the desire to tramp, 
which will of itself hush the beggar's cry. 

MoBt of the tramps are instinctively lazy; they are bom 
with a desire to travel and get a living without work. A 
noted authority upon paupers and criminals, a class to which 
the tramp belongs, says: "All efforts to improve pauper stock 
by improving the surroundings, is fniitless of lasting good," 
and adviBea "Elimination as the only possible line of pro- 
gress*" If that statement is correct it emphasizes the asser- 
tion that the law of ''Reversion to type" is a fact in nature. 
He says further: "The reproduction o£ the vicious should be 
prevented, through humane custodial care, as that tends to a 
painless extinction of undesirable stock.'' Such statements 
are echoed and re-echoed at all meetings of organized charit- 
able societies and anti-tramp conventions* One thing can be 
said in its favor, it is more humane than the idea often heard 
in private, which has already been referred to, that the crim;- 
inal should be subjected to a surgical operation* There is no 
more terrible mistake than a violation of what is eternally 
right, for the sake of expediency. No act can be for the 
benefit of the public, which involves injustice to an individual. 

In a work entitled, "Paupers and Kelief-Giving in the 
United States," are some startling statements, "that one 
person out of every five, is an inmate of an Alms-House, or 
is assisted by some charitable organization - - * , That one 
million dollars each week is spent by the different states for 
charity; , , , . One person in ten dies a pauper in New 
York City; .... And that there are one hundred thousand 
tramps in the United States." Each day the doors open and 



close upon more than a thousand tramps and criminalB, and 
the cry is heard. "Our prisons are bursting, and poor houses 
overflowing." Busy citizens give no heed to the cauBe. but 
leave them with a full assurance, that they are better off 
within those walls than our christian world allows them to 
enjoy outside. 

A question of great importance to the future welfare of 
the nation is, "What vocation will the children of these pfiup- 
ers follow? Will they become dependents and defective, or can 
they be made self sustaining? How shall the reforming i^ro- 
cess be carried on? If there is no hope of improving the prea- 
ent crop, then it is incumbent upon organized society to im- 
prove the coming generation. How to do this, is the problem 
which confronts the sociologist of the age. 

We have retreats for incorrigible children, who become^ 
largely, incorrigible adults. But this is a misnomer ; they ah on Id 
be called retreats for the children of imperfectly educntod 
mothers, and it will be found, that in the proper education of 
the coming mothers, lies the means, by which the incorrigible 
children will become a small, instead of, as now, a large factor 
in the weal or woe of the commonwealth. 


The causes which lead to the multiplication of the genus 
homo, known as tramps, is a subject for many newspaper and 
miagazine articles, and in no case, do the writers suggest aiiy 
remedy, or give the cause. It is true, all favor some sort of 
punishment, more or less severe, either starvation or impris- 
onment. But the remedy which seems to recieve the ai> 
plause of shallow minds is, to push the tramp along to the next 

An Atlantic Monthly writer, in an article entitled "Wan- 
derlust" says that he has been studying the child tramps, and 
relates his experience with them. He says the pause is wholly 
psycological and calls it Wanderlust, which is the German for 
love of wandering, or going some where. "Often caused by 


the reading of dime novels, tales of adventure, and detec- 
tive stories, which they greedily devour." The Atlantic 
writer speaks of one "Little chap," who visited a certain sec- 
tion of country every six weeks for three years, but he would 
evade all attempts to find out about his home and friends, or 
the cause of his wanderings. This child would ride alone in 
box cars, and was a notable exception to his class. As a rule 
these nomads take great pleasure in talking to strangers, but 
are very careful to say but little of themselves. An old tramp 
said, "We have the railroad fever," and the writer in the 
Monthly agrees with that theory, but prefers to call it "Wan- 
derlust." They want to travel, go out into the world; after a 
few weeks they run home, until the mood seizes them and 
they run away again. He became well acquainted with some 
of them, they were not "tough," but had a passion to see 
things; mentions a child who had as nice a home as could be 
' wished, the strange passion would take possession of him, 
sometimes as often as once a month, and he would run away. 
When he seemed most docile a thought of the outside world 
would take possession of him, (it may have been caused by 
the whistle of an incoming train), and he would scamper to 
the depot, and off. 

The writer of the magazine article referred to, came to the 
conclusion after close study, that "There is no use in whip- 
ping such children, they are not to blame, and can no more 
resist the desire to go, than they can help breathing." 

'^Individuals are th« slaves of their desires, and are helpless in its toils." 

The magazine writer referred to does not assign any other 
reason than the uncontrolable passion to go somewhere.- There 
must be a cause for this intense deftire to go, as there is no 
effect without a cause, but none of the writers upon the tramp 
question, give a hint, or suggest any plan which will enable 
one to begin a study of the mania to wander. When a tramp 
was asked "Who are you?" The answer was significant: "I 
am a product of our christian civilization, sir: I am a tramp." 


It was a picture long to be remembered, this spectacle of want 
beseeching plenty. 

The author of Wanderlust has not, nor have any other 
writers, fathomed the reason for this intense desire to wander. 
He suggests that the tramp should be treated by the medical 
fraternity, pathologically; that is, as diseased. As well treat 
a congenital criminal to a dose of physic, to put more good 
brain substance into his head, or give an emetic to force a 
hand to grow, when a man is bom minus a hand, as to treat 
the mania for wandering, by injecting doses of medicine into 
the subject, on the plan of the "Keely cure." 

It is singular that our wise men and women ovelook the 
fact that tramps are born wanderers; that the difficulty is in 
the brain formation, and their tendency is to wander; to lead 
vagabond lives. Our doctors, law makers, and police systems, 
are powerless to change the brain structure of such persons. 

The authorities of Boston, Mass., in 1895, claimed that they 
had solved the tramp question, and they think it is proven by 
the fact that there were 8,000 less applications for relief at 
"Wayfarers Inn," where the applicant for relief must work 
for his board. And Boston calls that convincing proof. To 
a thinker, this does not prove anything, except that the tramp 
has been able to get his meals without working at the above 
or some other inn. But the statement is applauded by super- 
ficial thinkers. This does not cure the tramp, it simply puts 
the burden of his relief upon some other community,., 

A few leading scientists recognize the impossibility of re- 
forming the congenital murderer or thief, but they ignore all 
who are guilty of minor ofiFenses against society; all the lesser 
misdemeanors are charged to environment. They have noth- 
ing to ofiFer except more preaching and praying, in connection 
with a broader humanitarian work. All such work is temp- 
orary. If a boy is born with a brain so constructed that it 
will develop a love of wandering, and a desire for new scenes 
and acquaintances, no environment, no medical treatment, will 
cure him, nor will any punishment change that innate desire. 


The writer to whom reference has been made, sayB the 
boy that be kne^, who had a good home, outgrew the desire 
to run awny. He is reckoning without complete data; be 
will find, if a careful record is kept, that as the boy grows to 
manhood he will make very frivolous excuses to enable him 
to leave his business much oftener than there is any need, 

Mr, C, of W. says, from childhood be has always had 
an uneontrolable desire to run away from home, and related 
an instance: When fifteen years of age he worked in his 
father's store; at dinner his father told him to take a team 
and drive to the farm for a load. After dinner he went to 
hia room, changed his clothes and left, and did not return for 
seven years. He is now a commercial traveler, and is positive 
that if he were located he could not remain at home. He 
cannot account for his desire to go away from home. Says 
he could not control it nor could he tell why he would leave — 
could never give any reason for it. This inborn desire to go; 
to visit new and strange places; is no doubt caused by the 
mother's longing to go while she is forming the brain of her 
prospective child, and when to this wanderlust is added, (con- 
genitallyj or through environment), theft, licentioueness^ mur- 
der, and drink, we have the inciting cause of the many vi- 
cious tramps. That some of the older tramps, not the child 
tramps, have become sq by environment, that is, lack of em- 
ployment, or depraved companions, there is no question, and 
all such can be cured by a reversal of the environment which 
made them tramps; but the vast majority are not to blame, 
nor can they be cured. The man who asks for work, and is 
willing to work, as long as there is any work to be had, is a 
tramp because of environment. The problem is. What has 
created this wanderlust brain? If the prospective mother is 
constantly longing to go somewhere, or to visit places where 
she has, or has not been, and does not counteract that long- 
ing, she must of necessity be forming a brain on that line; 
and it is no wonder that her child has an innate desire to go 


When we consider the vast army of commercial travelers, 
the many business men, the many railroad employees, contin- 
ually on the go, the wife at home under the conditions we are 
investigating, longing to go with, or to be with her husband 
when he journeys to a distant pl^ce, it is not to be wondered 
at that the child is bom with that abnormal desire to go. This 
intense desire on the part of the mother, at such a time, must 
produce a brain structure that will impel its possessor to keep 
going, if not all the time, then at least when the desire seizes 
him. Here is found the fundamental cause of "Wanderlust-" 
If the brain of an individual is so constructed that the love 
of home, and the desire to be at home, is stronger than the 
love of wandering, that person will have no desire to tramp, 
and there are many who prefer home, who are uneasy, unset- 
tled, dissatisfied when away from home. Such persons can 
never become tramps. This is our answer, as to the cause oi: 
"Wanderlust/' Again we say it is very singular that our 
educators, who are laboring to elevate the class known as 
tramps, have not solved the problem, which is plain to any 
thinker, as soon as he gives a few moments thoughtful con- 
sideration to the subject. 





The money-making mania seems to be incFeaEing, and the 
d^ire to accumulate gold, stocks, bonds, and all the various 
forms of wealth, pervades the very air of the large centers of 
commerce. All classes seem to be permeated with an intense 
mania to acquire wealth, and many of the female portion of 
organized society are becoming more and more infatuated 
with a desire to gamble. Not only in what is known aa a 
friendly game of cards, but it has grown to such an extent 
that it has become a regular business to provide offices where 
women only are admitted, and where they can "put or call'^ (a 
slang phrase of the stock market), purchase or sell any stock 
that they desire to their hearts' content, or the condition of 
their finances may permit; where elegantly appointed rooms 
are furnished with lady operators in charge to wait upon them. 

These women are not of that class who are interested in 
the home, or in the affairs of the public, that is, not wage 
earners. They are usually the idle, un thinking, heedless 
daughters, sisters, or wives, of the well to do, or partially suc- 
cessf ul business men. 

What is the cause of the growth of this speculative mania? 
Our theory is, that the prospective tnothetj who overhears the 
exciting stories of the day's success in making money on the 
Board of Trade, which engrosses the mind of husband, father, 
or brother, and the plans which are formed for a further ac- 
cumulation of wealth in her hearing, necessarily influences 


the mentality of her unborn child, just as if the mother should 
every night listen to a good musician, she would produce a 
musicaKbrain, always premising that it would aflPect the 
bright, keen-witted woman to a greater extent than one of a 
sluggish mentality, and its eflPect would be in proportion to 
the interest she would take in the subject. 

Such environment creates a desire on the part of the 
mother to do as the husband, 'father or brother does, specu- 
late, so she could have the money she needs, without asking 
for it. The spirit of speculation and greed has become a ma- 
nia with some men, and that their wives, sisters, and mothers 
should imbibe the spirit, is not at all surprising, and its bane- 
ful eflfect upon the oflFspring of such mothers must be serious; 
necessarily injurious, in that sense, to the mental and moral 
welfare of the individual, and through the individual, society ^ 

as a whole is injured. 

All classes that are permeated by this desire for gain, to |! 

the exclusion of other subjects, become in one sense gamblers, yi/i 

in their habits and notions, and the careful observer can pick i 

out the men whose minds are absorbed in schemes of money- '^ 

getting. It would shock some of them if they were charged 
with trying to *'get something for nothing." In the abstract l- 

that is just what it is. The speculator is always a gambler in . 'j 

spirit. i 

Why is this desire increasing? Its growth cannot be com- '4 

puted. The impelling niotive is well worth the investigation 
of the student of causation, and its solution, with the lessons 
drawn from it, may be the means of preventing a further in- - 

crease of this vice. How? By curtailing the production of 
such as would have a desire to gamble, and in their stead pro- ; 

duce normal brain structures. 

It will no doubt surprise some so-called reformers, who 
flatter themselves that the world is growing better, but are at 
times puzzled to know why their eflForts seem to be futile, and 
who thiiik our country is not as bad as some other countries. 
We say it must astonish them when they read the report taken 



from the New York Sun, that "To satisfy the gambling in- 
stincts of the people in this country, there are poker chips 
enough made in the United States each year to mak^a stack, 
if placed one upon another, sixty miles high, and if laid edge 
to edge would reach the entire length of the Erie canal and 
back, with enough over to supply one hundred gambling 
houses. It is estimated that there are 250,000,000 poker 
chips in use, nearly all of which represent coin, in games 
of chance." "The gambling instinct is becoming natural to 

We unhesitatingly assert that the ante-natal condition of 
the mother's mind impresses the brain structure of her off- 
spring, and in that manner so many are afflicted with the 
gambling mania. Are we not touching the root of this mat- 
ter when we say that the mother is to blame, although she 
may be ignorant of the fact? By her desire to do as her hus- 
band, father, or brother does, to which we referred in the 
opening of the argument, this mania to get something for 
nothing, which she longs for, so impresses the prospective 
mother's mind, that she produces a brain formation in her 
child, whose whole desire will be to acquire wealth in some 
manner, honestly if possible; if not honestly, to get it somehow. 

That the mania for gambling is increasing, is a fact which 
is evident to one who is much among strangers and who visits 
the various towns and cities in the land. It is noticeable in 
the hotels, on the trains, lake, river j^ and ocean steamers, as 
well as in public gambling resorts, and even in the privacy of 
the home. It can be seen in the streets, in the spirit displayed 
by the boy who is so eager to win marbles; he has the spirit 
of "get something for nothing" in him; men who have a desire 
to win by the turn of a card; others who bet upon a horse 
race, bicycle match, etc., and who will bet upon the wheel of 
fortune at a country fair, play policy, buy lottery tickets, or 
options upon wheat or com, and the staple subject of conver- 
sation among such men is speculation. In a milder fprm it is 
seen at the church fairs and sociables, by the simple "grab 




bag," and "ring cake." It is the same spirit — a desire to get 
a large amount for a small sum. 

Many who have this innate desire strongly impressed, will 
bet upon the most frivolous things. They may be in all other 
respects very conscientious, but do not hesitate to take "some- 
thing for nothing," if it can be gained in betting. 

In illustration of what the peculiar brain formation of 
some men will lead to, the following case is given. The writer 
was personally acquainted with the entire family: W. S. of 
N. Y. was an inveterate faro player; would risk all he could' 
earn or borrow at the faro table, and would, when out of funds 
— ^which was the largest part of the time — spend hours with a 
faro box in his hand dealing the cards, studying, as he said, 
the combination, like those who play solitaire. His idea was 
to learn how to beat the bank. But he would not bet upon 
any other game of chance; was thoroughly opposed to all 
schemes where the element of chance was a factor; insisted 
that all games such as whist or euchre, even chess, was foolish 
and a waste of time. "^ 

At one time when he was out of funds, and had no work, 
(his nearest relatives refused to assist him any longer), he 
induced his uncle to purchase a horse and dray, giving a note 
for it and promised not to play faro any more. He drove* it 
about a week, sold the outfit, and the same night lost every 
cent of it at a faro bank. In every other respect he was a 
model of virtue, conscientious in the extreme, and a devout 
worker in the cause of religion. Every Sunday he would as- 
sist an itinerant evangelist in his work on the street corners, 
on the plan of the Salvation Army. He would read the bible 
and pray, then the preacher would take the stand and exhort 
the crowd. He was also a strict tetotaller, was never known 
to drink a glass of beer or liquor of any kind; he was the only 
total abstainer in the family. The mother, a very fine woman, 
never refused to drink a glass of wine, and often laughed at 
her son's peculiarities. She had two younger sons, who were 


not temperance men, nor hard drinkers — they died at about 
the age of forty — nor were they in any sense religious. 

This case cannot be attributed to heredity or to environ- 
ment, and if charged to atavism, it could not be sustained 
from the fact that the parents were Germans, and not one of 
their ancestors were ever known to be either gamblers or te- 
totallers. The father was somewhat of a drinker. He would 
always keep, as it is called, "blue Monday," that is, would 
never work at his trade on Mondays, but would visit a neigh- 
boring saloon for the entire day. 

The question may be asked. How did you arrive at the 
conclusion that pre-natal influence, was the controHing fac- 
tor in this case? To which the answer, is: 

First — It was that mother's first child. Before his birth 
she was disgusted at her husband's weekly ''blue Monday" 
saloon visitation. This formed the temperance ideas or 
shaped the brain function which governed that idea. As to 
the craze for faro playing, we have no theory, unless it was 
caused by a desire, or wish that she could win money by 
playing faro, as her husband made faro boxes for gamblers, 
and the reports of the wealth which was acquirc^d by such 
persons, whom she very often saw, as her husband's work was 
done at home, impressed her with a desire to win at faro. 

Second — Her first son's pious cast of mind was caused by 
the mother's religious ideas. She had been a church com- 
municant in early life, and had pleaded with her husband to 
become a christian. Later she became lukewarm, and rarely 
ever went to church, so that her younger sons did not imbibe 
the religious spirit of the first born. 

All the known facts point to the conclusions which are 
given here, and this is related to show what peculiar charac- 
ters can be found in humanity. The parents are dead, but 
the evidence clearly points to maternal impre^iou as the fac- 
tor, in producing a child with such peculiar traits. 




One of the most disagreeable characteristics of the age, 
which is found among all classes and conditions, from the 
lowest and most illiterate to the highest and best educated, 
in a greater or lesser degree, is that of fretting over all the 
daily aflFairs of our lives, and in its essence, is fault finding. 

It is as common as the air we breathe, so universal that 
unless it is unusually pronounced in an individual it is hard- 
ly noticed. The cry is heard continually, it is so hot! or it is 
so cold! The weather is very bad! and so on, ad infinitum. 

We are reminded of the old gentleman who always met his 
friends with, "This is a fine morning, bless the Lord," or 
"This is a disagreeable day, bless the Lord." No matter what 
kind or quality of the weather it was, it was always "Bless the 
Lord." He must have been a philosopher, from the fact that he 
knew no amount of grumbling or fault-finding could possibly 
change it, whatever the effect may be upon human affairs. 

The lesson taught in the above incident sank deep into the 
heart of one person whom we know, and is reproduced in the 
hope that it will benefit others. 

To the class of f retters, belong those mothers who are con- 
tinually crying to their children, Don't! Don't! and it teaches 
them to, and they generally do, echo the cry. Some of this 
fault-finding spirit may be only a habit which has become 
ingrained in a person through environment, by the repetition 
of the fretful remarks of what may be termed "nagging 


women." But by far the larger majority are bom so. This 
is proven by the many fretful children, who sliow their dis- 
positions before they are really conscious of their surround- 
ings, unless caused by sickness'or pain. But a sick child, like 
fi Bick grown person, is apt to be quiet, and not cross. How 
ofton it is heard of a child, that it is always "good," Tt> 
some mothers it seems uncommon for a child to be nafurftl. 
It would be very unnatural and a great curiosity, to see 
a litter of kittens, with one or two of them running around 
with the fur on end, spitting and clawing at each moveraeat 
That is just what a cross baby does in a human manner. 

In the case of a cross child, it is fair to assume that the 
mother is naturally peevish and fretful; where that is the case, 
some would call it heredity, but if contrary to the mother's 
general disposition, they might call it atavism. But we pre- 
fer to call it maternal impression; pre-natal iiiHueuce, and 
cite cases to illustrate and prove the theory. 

Mrs. R., of I., is a woman of very good traits, kindly dis- 
posed, and well educated; her parents are of similar nature. 
AYlien Mrs. R. became aware that she was to become a mother, 
she was vexed and angry to think that she would bo com- 
pelled to give up the social pleasures which she found so 
agreeable, as she was always a welcome addition to the social 
circle. Her child was cross, ugly and very ill-natured from 
the day of its birth. Its irritable, fretful disposition, was 
caused by the mother's mental condition previous to Hs birth. 
There can be no doubt that pre-natal influence was the cause 
of this child's disposition, as Mrs. R's second child, bom two 
years later, is of the average; that is, is not cross and peevish 
like the first one. The mother admits that she was reconciled 
to her condition in the second case, and the lesson she had 
learned in the first case was a warning to her which she 

Another case is given: Mrs. F., of M., has three sons, the 
oldest, a clergyman, the second, a railroad conductor, the next, 
a commercial traveler. The first and last, are of the average 


good nature. The second son is of a mean, surly, cross dis- 
position; seems to be at enmity with everybody, and will 
fight upon the slightest provocation. The mother says, when 
she found she was to become a mother the second time, she 
was very much put out over it, and was angry to think she 
was compelled to go through the pangs of maternity again. 
Before the advent of her third son, she had learned of the 
efiPect of maternal impressions. This case was related to the 
writer by the third son, who stated that his mother had told 
him the circumstances when he married, and warned him and 
his wife. Again, in this instance, maternal impression was 
the prime factor, in setting aside the law of heredity, as it is 
generally understood, and the acquired, unnatural trait of the 
mother was transmitted to her offspring. 

At the risk of becoming tedious, we add another case, 
which differs from either of these two. The following was 
related by the father, who said: "When my wife became 
aware that she was to become a mother for the second time, 
she cried over it, and I pleaded with her, not to worry about 
it, we could take care of it." The child, which is now eight 
years old, will once in a while, when the father is reading, 
come up to him, throw her arms around his neck and say: 
"Papa, I feel just as though I must cry." "What for, 
daughter?" "I do not know, papa, but I feel just as though I 

One who cannot see how accurately such peculiarities are 
directly traceable to the mother's mental condition, or pre- 
natal influence, is either too obtuse, or prejudiced in favor of 
pre-conceived notions to waste any time over. 





A study of the cause of 
varieties in twins, is per- 
haps the most diffipult of 
all phenomena on the line 
of Materology, it being so 
complex in its nature, and is 
wholly hypothetical; that 
is to say, it is pure guess- 
work, and the mother of 
twins can give no explana- 
tion as to when she had 
impreBsioTis of one kind or longings of another kind which 
were entirely difiPerent. 

But to the question; Why are twins so difiPerent, who are 
bom of the same father and mother, with the same heredity, 
and identical environment, bom under what seems to the 
superficial observer, exactly the same circumstances? 

To illustrate: One of them is a fat chubby-faced girl, 
with a poach bloom countenance, her brown hair hanging in 
tangled curls, dress plastered with mud, shoes untied, and one 
shoe string gone, one pantiet torn ofiF, the other rolled up to 
her knee, while she is busy making mud pies. She will be- 
come, if properly trained, a first-class cook, as her playing 
cook clearly demonstrates. It is just such a character, as is 
often seen swinging on the gate, or romping in the street. 


> _ 

Her twin sister, is trim and graceful in action, cleanly and 
always neat in appearance, precise in the use of language, 
hair always in order, her whole demeanor, with her likes and 
dislikes, proves that she is of an entirely different mentality, 
and needs to be trained on seperate lines, in a different men- 
tal atmosphere. These sisters have nothing in common. One 
develox)S into the fine-haired woman of fashion, thoroughly 
heartless, caring only for self. The other becomes a busy, 
bustling, motherly woman, adding daily to the comfort of 
those around her, and is always ready to lend a helping hand 
whenever her assistance is needed. Or, if these twins are boys, 
one will listen to and heed the admonition of his parents or 
teachers, and prefers only that which is pure and noble, is 
full of zeal, has a dislike for any wrong, is kind and forgiving, 
his whole nature, gentle. He will preach and practice mor- 
ality until the day of his death, with no expectation of present 
reward, except the consciousness of having done his duty. 
The twin brother, with the same factors and the same en- 
vironment, so far as can be seen, looks only to selfish enjoy- 
ment, to the gratification of his personal desires, and cares 
nothing for others' feelings or welfare. His conscience never 
troubles him; he is surcharged with unbelief, has no con- 
ception of justice toward man or beast, and is unable to com- 
prehend the morality of the brother who is trying to "Do 
unto others as he would be done by." He is cruel, and vin- 
dictive in his nature; his brain structure of an entirely dif- 
f efent mould. 

Why are these twins so varied if heredity is the all pow- 
erful factor? Nor does the theory of atavism explain it. To 
say it is their differing natures, and then look wise, is a cheap 
and easy way to dodge the question, of cause, and is as lucid 
as it would be to say that liquor makes a man drunk because 
it intoxicates. With such an answer, the question remains 
unsolved. Why this difference in these twins? They should 
be alike, according to the theory of heredity. Alike in taste, 
feeling, desires, expression and in features. But it is rare to 




find them so, not even the Siamese twins, who have been al- 
luded to. They were not alike. It is true, there are cases in 
which is found a very close and marked resemblance. But in 
all such phenomena the mother is never at fault as to which 
is one or the other, and as the children grow older the close 
obscryor or friend instantly recognizes John or Joe, Mary or 
EIleiL If the cause of the variation in twins is looked for in 
the many voluminous books written by learned men, not a 
line or hint will be found to assist in solving the problem. 
But if the student will "Invent a little common sense," and 
look for some other factor, besides heredity or atavism, a clue 
may be found. 

Suppose the hypothesis is formulated, that the weight 
and position of the brain structure of these twins, could be 
examined before birth, it would be found, that at no time aro 
they of exactly the same weight, strength, or structure, and 
also assume that on one day the mother has a strong mental 
impression, which corresponds to, and which develops the 
peculiar trait in one of those twins after birth. That im- 
pression is imparted to the weakest or lightest brain, as force 
follows the line of least resistance, and mind is force. The 
next day or week, that mother has a strong mental impression 
which is of an entirely diflPerent character, she impresses it 
uxK>n the other brain which happens to be the weakest at that 
tims. Or, take another view, — say that the mental action of 
tlie mother at a particular time, changes, adds to, or retards 
the brain formation of that twin whose brain structure' is 
nearest to the mother's nerve center. The position of the 
brains of these prospective twins is continually changing, and 
the next day or the next week the other structure is nearest, 
and it receives an entirely diflPerent impression. Or, still 
another hypothesis: Assume that the mother's and father's 
mental and moral character — composite, as it were — is pro- 
duced in one of the twins, and its brain structure is normal, 
with heredity as the controlling factor. The other brain 
structure being the weakest, or nearest, at the time the mother 


has an exceedingly strong mental impression, which is wholly 
at variance with her views when she is in a normal condition 
and that shock or scare, that envious thought, sudden outburst 
of temper, in short whatever the impression may have been, 
the mother's mental action has destroyed or added to, or it 
has retarded the growth of certain brain cells, just as in the 
case of a like or dislikie for certain foods. (See chapter on 
Brain Formation). 

Either of the theories here stated are at least logical. No 
others to our knowledge have ever been given by any writer, 
that will account for the variety in the character of twins. 

Positive evidence is not attainable on this line. Further 
investigation, assisted by intelligent mothers, may lead to 
more data, but it is doubtful, as a mother will be unable to 
locate the brain structure of either child, even if she is posi- 
tive that her oflFspring will be dual. But whether our position 
be true or false, an acceptance of it can do no harm. 

It is said by some medical authorities that there is ,no 
nervous or veinous connections between the mother and her 
unborn babe. Such arguments are not based upon reason or 
experiment, but solely upon the fact that the anatomist could 
not find any nerves or veins under his scalpel or microscope, 
and it must be an error, when it is considered that mothers 
are liable to have severe nauseating spells at such a time, 
which is evidence that there is a very close and intimate 
nervous relation between the forming body of her child and 
the nervous centre of the mother, i. e. her brain. 

And we also note that M. Dareste, a French anatomist, 
mixed madder with the food of a female mammal, and pro- 
duced a red color in the bones of the unborn product, which 
is evidence that there is a very intimate veinous connection. 
In the light of these well known facts, which can not be suc- 
cessfully controverted — least of all by an intelligent physician 
— it seems unwarranted for any one to say that there is no 
nervous or veinous connection between a mother and her 
prospective child. 





This is an age of close ecientific investi- 
gatiou. Facts are demanded* Everything 
aninifite and inanimate is subject to investi- 
Igation and is carefully examined by tbe 
scientific student. Even the infant has 
been placed under the microscopic analysis 
of the scientist, and as the results are pro- 
claimed, its scientific conclusions are thor- 
^oughly digested. Crude and undemon- 
Strated ideas are soon eliminated, Theo- 
^ries that are logical, and which stand the 
test of close investigation^ remain and are 
accepfed as scientific^ unless further devel- 
opment shows them to be fallacious. 

Evolutionists hold, **That in the infant ancestral traits can 
be discerned by its manifestations of rage, o? its impulse to 
obey, and that both of these traits are inheritances of remote 
ancestors." There is no scientific basis for atavism; it is a 
hiding place for obscurity of ideas. It is said that the study 
of infants is a study of man in a primitive condition. 

But now comes another theory— Materology — which has, 
at least, the merit of being logical, and it has an array of evi- 
dence in its favor, from which conclusions can be drawn that 
seem irrefutable, showing that ancestral traits are of little 
weight when compared with the influence of the mother's 


mind in shaping the body and the brain structure of her ofiP- 
spring. This shaping of the brain influences its whole life 
and character, for good or for evil; if neither one or the other, 
then the individual will be a nonentity. But to proceed with 
the subject of infantile traits. Tests of the ability of a child 
to distinguish colors have been made, but, so far; are admitted 
to be unsatisfactory. The test to discover man's primitive 
language has also been tried, but has proven a failure. Some 
years ago German scientists, by direction of the government, 
placed two infants, a boy and a girl, in charge of a deaf and 
dumb woman living upon a mountain side, where no strangers 
would be likely to call, and she received strict injunction not 
to allow anyone to see the children for the purpose of talking 
with them. The German government, through these chil- 
dren, with the aid of those scientific scholars, was trying to 
find the first principles of human language. When the chil- 
dren were six years of age they were taken before a body of 
scientis,ts for examination. It was fouad that they could 
imitate various sounds, such as the barking of the dog, the 
mewing of a cat, the noise made by chickens and other 
familiar sounds. They could understand- each other by the 
use of guttural sounds or exclamations, which they alone 
understood, but did not utter one intelligible sound, from 
which anything could be learned that there was such a thing 
as a primitive language. Not a trace was noted, and the ex- 
periment was of no benefit to science. 

The latest published investigation upon the subject is by 
Prof. Sully, 1896, in which he says: "No test of primitive 
language is considered infallible." It is claimed by Prof. 
Sully that the first questions of a child are from its twenty- 
first to its twenty-eighth month, but its vigorous inquiry be- 
gins in the fourth year of its existence. If by this is meant 
that the use of words to ask questions begins at that time, it 
may be true, but questions may and do originate in a child's 
mind long before it is able to speak, and with a bright child 
much earlier than with one of dull comprehension. Prof. 



Sully's statement is problematical, and cannot be demon- 

A careful investigation showB that some infants will, as 
early as the third, fourth^ or sixth month, ask questions; as 
all obsemng persons know, when something occurs which 
causes? an infant to open its eyes witli astonishment, and the 
whole expression of its face is, What does this mean? And 
then, if afraid, its little lips will curl, and a cry of fear will 
trefik forth— in some more easily than others. Why will 
some quickor than others by their action show fear? Becaos© 
of their brain formation. From the moment a child is bom 
there is behind it an irresistible moti%*e in its efforts to be- 
come a unit in the world of units. It may belong to the 
class which is clot lied in silken raiment, or possibly its fate 
may have placed it among the poor and lowly, or the depraved 
and criminal class. It may be one of many in a family, but 
whatever place it fills, the world will get a large share of Its 
deeds, for good or for evil. Its future is to a great extent 
mapped out, and what it is to be is largely govemed by its 
mental capacity, for which the mother is primarily responsi^ 
ble. She determines its brain power. 

As a test to show that a child's desire to lead a certain 
life is not the result of education, but of something back of it, 
and that it is not controlled by its environment, a number of 
pupils in a New York public school were asked to write the 
occupation of their jKirents, and what business the pupils 
would prefer to follow, Eighty-seven of them were girls, of 
whom forty-six wanted to be teachers, twelve wait resseSj eight 
dressmakers, four clerks, thirteen milliners, and four had oo 
choice. Not one of them wanted to be like the mother — a 
housekeeper. It is not to be denied that the child is father 
of the maUj and its talent is impressed upon it, pre-natally. 
It crops out before pinafores are abandoned. 

Notice a number of children from the same family ^ at 
play. One delights to make mud pies, and bread; it has the 
brain formation for a first-class cook, providing it is assisted 


by education. Another is continually attending to her dolls, 
dressing and re-dressing it. This proves that her desire is to 
be well dressed, and she will long for nice things. She will 
show good taste in her appearance, and her treatment of the 
doll will give a clue to her motherly instincts. The writer 
watched a little girl about ten years old, at a street comer on 
a damp December day. She had on a p&ik calico dress, held 
an old red and white display parasol, given to her by some 
merchant, over herself and little brother, and hugged a doll 
that was wrapped in a big shawl which nearly touched the 
ground; she was visiting, or talking, to the little boy, but her 
whole actions showed that she was born with a love for chil- 
dren. She never let her mind wander very far from that doll; 
she would wrap and re-wrap it, tucking its pretended hair 
back out of its eyes. She was noticed in the same spot for at 
least half an hour, as it was near her liome, and her treatment 
of the doll was the clue to her inborn nature — a bom nurse. 
A third child will arrange the chairs, and teach imaginary 
scholars, if she cannot get real children to play school. This 
indicates brain power upon educational lines, and if encour- 
aged, will result in an exceptionally good instructor, one who 
will be in love with the work. The boy who is continually 
driving horses, even if he has nothing but a tow string, unless 
thwarted, will develop an intense fondness for horses, and will 
talk horse morning, noon and night; and if the cause were in- 
vestigated, would be found to have been influenced by the 
mother going to horse trots or was delighted to ride after a 
good horse. 

All the natural traits of children, which may be wholly 
unlike the parents, is the product or the result of the mother's 
desires and wishes before its birth, and such traits are strong 
or weak, and controllable in proportion to the mother's long- 
ings. If her desires were very strong upon a particular line, 
the child cannot easily overcome it. If it is a desirable qual- 
ity it can be taught on that line without difficulty and will 
need no urging, it will only need to be directed. The diffi- 



culty with the majority is, they have been crowded into the 
wrong channels, the parents have tried to make them fit a 
garment they have picked out, rather than to make a garment 
to fit them. If an individual is a failure in the line he is fol- 
lowing, it proves that his brain was not created for that work, 
and he had not enough brain power to push him into the 
channels which he could have filled successf nlly. 

After having spent much time, and investigated the mat- 
ter thoroughly, we have been irresistibly led to the con- 
clusions noted in regard to infantile traits, and they will also 
become obvious to any student of cause. 




"The christian, like the poet, Is bom, not made."— DntmmoTkX. 

It is a pertinent question for the christian 
world, What will be the eflFect of a thorough 
comprehension of the subject of maternal 
impressions, by the coming parents of futuro 
generations upon christian thought and char- 
acter? Will it be a benefit or a detriment to 
the cause of Christ? Will its study assist tho 
christian world in its work for tlie rede in i>- 
tion of souls and enchance the power of the 
christian in the salvation of mankind? 

It will hardly be denied that a kindly, IovIti^, genoroua, 
good Samaritan spirit in a person conduces to christian cul- 
ture, and is essential for a true disciple of the Savior, Then 
it follows that an education upon the line of maternal im- 
pressions is positively necessary to insure the fullest fruition 
of christian work. How? By teaching the mother so that 
she will not, through ignorance of God's laws, which govern 
her at such periods, produce an atheistic, agnostic brain ; but 
upon the contrary, produces a brain soil rich in the constit- 
uents wherein good teaching will take root and ilourifili. 

It has been said, "That a child is to grow up a christian, 
and never know himself as being otherwise," ako, ''Train up 
a child in the way it should go." Is it always possible to do 
as the above quotations indicate? Then why is it that so 




many who are noted for their christian pioty^ are so unfortu- 
nate in one or more of their children? There is a cause for 
the failure of heredity and atavism to assert itself, when 
christian parents produce a child who will not listen to re- 
ligious instruction, and will never take any interest in matters 
which pertain to church affairs, or who may eTsn become a 
thief and murderer* 

That men are drifting away from beliefs in creeds and 
their .loyalty to churches and its environment, can hardly be 
questioned, in spite of all ar^ments, Statements are made to 
prove the growth of chriBtianity, as for instance, that there was 
an increase of over four million clmrch members from 1890 to 
1895, in the United States, and $150,000,000 spent for the 
spread of Christianity in connection with christian charities. 
Upon the other side is the statement of a well known evan- 
gelist, in a book now on sale, that aeventy^five per cent- of 
the young men never enter a church door, and only five 
per cent, of them are professing christians. It cannot be 
doubted that some are born with their devotional powers 
largely developed, who have a love for, and desire to indulge 
in charitable deeds and religious duties. Others have no taste 
for such devotional acts, but are very charitable; full of mercy 
and loving kindness towards their fellow men. The first class 
become leaders in spiritual and moral work. There are others 
who, in church ly language are called dead branches; they have 
been baptized or admitted in some form or other to fellowship; 
but little by little they break away and they finally fail to at- 
tend at all. There are others who have lost all faith in the 
church and the creed, who remain in it for fear of loss of social 
prestige, and others who at once break away from their allegi- 
ance. Every earnest christian worker knows that the above 
is a true statement; the reader will understand that I am not 
trying to prove that Christianity is on the decline, I simply 
call the attention of the christian world to the danger which 
larks in the present system of the non-education of christian 
mothers along proper lines, and I also point to the remedy. 


Do christian workers ever give a thought as to the real, 
the fundamental cause, of the indiflFerence to christian influ- 
ence, by some who should be interested in such labor? The 
christian world sees an eflFect of a cause, which effect is apatlij^ 
and indifference. It labors to bring about more earnest 
christian endeavor; invites evangelists to preach and pray tor 
the spread of the gospel; spends its time and money witli a 
great deal of energy; but the effect is not satisfactory; a few 
additions are made to the roll of the church, and in a short 
time the majority drift back into the same old rut of indiffer- 
ence. As an excuse it is said that the converts are indifferent, 
become so because they are luke-warm in the Lord's work. 
Such an answer does not explain the cause, it only emphasizes 
an effect; the cause lies back of that. Why are they luke- 
warm? You answer, "Because they are indifferent and apa- 
thetic." Why indifferent? "Because they are lukewarm/' 
and thus the reasoning is in a circle, arriving at the same 
point without a clue as to the predisposing cause. 

Suppose it is looked at from another standpoint, a clearer 
insight may be had. Revivals of religion should begin 
earlier; that is to say, those who are to become church mem- 
bers and earnest christian workers, must be endowed with a 
brain structure that can and will work in the church and in 
the cause of Christ. The reformation must begin before 
birth. How? By teaching the mother that in earnest hoping 
and praying that her child will be a christian, or by a con- 
sistent christian life and work on the partof ihe mother, with 
no atheistic objections to church attendance while she is in 
the condition to which we are calling attention. Such menta! 
action on the mother's part will produce a brain structure 
that will be able to grasp and hold the good which it hears, 
and it will imbibe christian culture without any perceptible 
effort, and will delight to work in the Master's vineyard. It 
will be an individual that you will not be compelled to plead 
with; the work of the Lord will be earnestly and faithfully 
attended to. 



If mothers are taught to begin to train their children 
within the year preceding their birth, if they desire a chriB- 
tia child — and what gfood mother does not— there is not a 
shftdow of doubt, but that such a mother can fulfill her de- 
sires. A study of the mother's mental condition, at Buch a 
time, and a thorough comprehension of the subject by the 
coming parents, with its results upon the christifin character, 
as well as the eflPect it will have upon the future work of chris- 
tian organizations, is of the greates^t importance to an earnest 
disciple of the Savior. When the subject is thoroughly 
comprehended, and its operation uixin the mind and judg- 
ment of an individual is known, it wiU be surprising to see 
what an important factor in the line of christian work has been 
overlooked. Without a knowledge of this subject the human 
race will go on in the future as in the past, bringing forth a 
few earnest thoughtful laborers in the service of the Master, 
and many more who will be lukewarm; who are continually 
backward in church work, and who do their share because of 
the church society, more than from any special love for the 
cause; and upon whom much time and energy is expended to 
hold them in line. A still greater number will be born who 
cannot be reached at all, and who will not listen to any relig- 
ious instruction; such as are not susceptible to any arguments 
which are brought to bear upon them on the line of christian 
endeavor. In these classes are very many who are in all 
other respects model men and women; many of them are the 
children of devout and earnest christians. Why are they in- 
different? What is the cause? There is a cause, as the 
effect is plain to be seen in the many who belong to the above 
mentioned classes. It is the duty of every christian to study 
the cause by which, through some law of nature, the moral 
imbecile is produced, as well as the christian's child who will 
not imbibe religious instruction. 

Christian workers, do not, from any false conception of 
duty, with ignorant and stupid ideag of what some shallow 
minds are pleased to call modesty, lot your children grow up 




ignorant in the future. "What a price we are paying for the 
thing we call civilization." It is self-evident that learning 
God's law on the line of reproduction is as much the chris- 
tian's duty, as it is to know how to praise Him and to do His 
will; and it is God's will that mankind should obey His laws. 
All laws of nature are God's laws, and should be obeyed im- 
plicitly. . ;:^ 

How can a christian parent do her duty to herself, her 
offspring, and to her Lord and Master, if she is ignorant of 
the fundamental laws which govern her existence at such 
times? Bear in mind, that she is responsible in an entirely 
different manner from the father. Do not misunderstand, 
the father is responsible for the environment of the mother, 
and for the effect it may have upon her mentality, as It affects 
her offspring for weal or for woe. He is mutually responsi- 
ble, after the birth of the child for its environment and edu- 
cation, but she is alone the artizan who fashions its mental 
and physical structure. If the reader protests, and says, 
"You are laying a terrible responsibility upon the mother." 
I answer, "Oh, no! Nature and nature's God puts that upon 
her. I am simply pointing to a truth." 

Advance thinkers in the religious world are realizing that 
the church needs other assistance; help from outside its own 
ranks and methods. Numerous articles are published in re- 
ligious journals, in which they are urging some additional 
line of work to assist in regenerating humanity. In a late '^ 

publication of one of the leading christian newspapers was a 
lengthy article upon the great increase of crime. It said: "If 
anything can be done to lessen the tendency to crime it ought 
to be done; if the church can do nothing then let us invoke 
the aid of some other power." The knowledge of the effect 
of maternal impressions is an effective power, and the better 
element must insist that its effect shall be taught, as ignor- 
ance may lead to a debased manhood or womanhood, and the 
inevitable result will be, that in the future as in the present, 
humanity will suffer through ignorance of God's universal law. 


Are yoi:ij christian parent, doing your duty to your daugh- 
ter, in allowing lior to grow into womanhood unconBciOus of 
her ability to increase her power for good? When, by in- 
structing her that under peculiar circumstances, her mGntai 
condition will affect, not alone her own life, but the whole 
life and character of another human being. The effect of 
which may, nay will! reach far into the future for good or for 
evih Tour child should be taught that while in a certain 
condition, for which God has intended her, if her thoughts 
are pure and noble, the result will be a benefit to her offsprings 
to humanity^ and that it will redound to the glory of God, 

It may be possible that you are liable to condemnation in 
the sight of the Creator, for not improving the talent, tlmt is^ 
the ability to instruct which the Lord has placed in your 
power. The intelligent christian mother should have a clear 
conception of God's law upon the line of reproduction. Then, 
with an earnest desire to do His will, live up to the require- 
ments and duties which rest upon her through the law of 

The teaching of the result of maternal impression is of the 
greatest importance to the christian worker, because the ten- 
dency of the age is toward atheism and agnosticism; and it 
behooves the christian world to do all in their power to pre- 
vent the production of those whose moral qualities would be 
easily impressed with objections to religious culture. This 
can only be done by teaching the coming mothers the effect 
of maternal impressions upon the life and character of her 
offspring. There are cases on record where a child refused 
to enter a church or Sunday school, caused by pre-natal in- 
fluences, and it would not listen to any religious instruction; 
otherwise well-behaved and lovable. 

What is the cause of the growth of atheism in the land? 
That it is growing, can hardly be denied. One says it is her- 
edity, and argues that the skeptical father produces a num- 
ber of children, who, like himself, do not attend church, there- 
fore the children do not become communicants- Suppoea 


the idea that heredity is the cause of skepticism and infidelity 
is logically traced, and see where it leads. If heredity is the 
cause, then all the children in a family, with the same parent- 
age, should be identical, so far a& religious belief and action 
is concerned; all would be alike susceptible to christian in- 
struction, or on the contrary, all of them refuse to listen to 
it and absent themselves from church and Sunday school, and 
if neither one or the other, then they would all be lukewarm 
and indiflPerent to all questions of a religious nature. Every 
person who has given any attention to the subject, is awar^, 
that hardly two children in a family are of the same opinion 
upon questions pertaining to church or Sunday school. 

The conclusion forces itself upon our mentality, that her- 
edity is not the cause; there is some other factor which pro- 
duces the variety of religious tendencies in the minds and 
characters of the various children in a family. Some other 
factor has been at work, and heredity is not the controlling 
power; some other cause has so arranged the different brain 
soils of these children, so that one does, the other does not; 
one can, and the other can not understand christian teaching. 

Now, trace the theory of maternal impressions as a factor 
in the cause of agnosticism or indifference to religious ques- 
tions. Note the dissensions and petty disagreements which 
at times occur among the members of the various church 
organizations; a prospective mother, who is a member, we 
will add, a devout and sincere christian — while at a meeting 
of the society becomes incensed at the remarks and actions 
of some of the sisters. She leaves the meeting, out of pa- 
tience at the manner in which it has been conducted, and 
while excited she says: "I will not attend the meetings of our 
church any more." She may not really mean it, but expresses 
herself, or allows her mind to linger on that line, and it is 
safe to say that nine out of every ten christian mothers have 
indulged in such thoughts, if she has not spoken them at 
some time. Such an idea gets a foothold in the prospective 
mother's mind, strong or weak, in proportion to her mental 


calibre and nervous temi)erament, and she impresses that 
objection to church meetinepg and members upon the plastic 
fibres of the forming brain of her child, aa she does a taste 
or distaste for certain foods. Anotlier illustration: A mother 
who is one of those finely organized, nervous temperaments, 
with a keen perception and a logical mind, sits in a pew list- 
ening to a man in the pulpit whose brains are better adapted 
to sawing wood than preaching. She becomes disgusted, it 
may be at his actions or logic, and while in that mood, she is 
impressing the brain of her child with a desire to get away 
and remain away from such a preacher. Through such an 
impression she gives birth to an agnostic. 

How often has the parson's wife been shocked at the 
abuse heaped upon her by some of her husband's parishion- 
ers, who have been finding fault because she has done, or has 
not done, thus and so. And she says, "I will have nothing 
more to do with these church people, I am sick and tired of 
them all/* and begs her husband to get another place. Such 
a mental operation retards the growth of the brain cells which 
govern that function, or increases the cells which dislike 
church members or church attendance. And then the public 
wonders why the preacher's son is wayward, when he has been 
surrounded by such good influences. 

An illustration: Rev. Mr. W,, of M<, said to the writer: 
*'I have a child that I cannot get into a church wnthout the 
greatest difficulty, and have given up, as he is in misery all 
the time^ with no relief until he is outside of the clmrch 
doors." He said further that his wife was incensed at the 
actions and remarks of some of his church members, in a 
town where he was located within the year preceding the birth 
of this child. So that the evidence plainly points to maternal 
impressions as the cause of a preacher's son's objections to 
church attendance. None of the other children in the family 
but that are willing and anxious to attend church services. 

Contrary to the statement that no illustrations are taken 
from other works, the following is inserted because the Euh- 




ject is so well known over the entire civilized world. In The 
Review of Reviews, for November, 1892, is a sketch of Mrs. 
Willard, the mother of "The Uncrowned Queen/' Frances E., 
in which is stated, "That previous to the birth of Frances, 
Mrs. Willard often attended a singing school which was held 
near her home, and that she was attracted by the features and 
brown hair of a young woman who was a regular attendant." 
The features and hair of that young woman were reproduced 
in Frances E. Willard, whom the humanitarian element of 
the entire globe delights to honor and admire. 

Referring to the quotation of Prof. Drummond, at the 
opening of this subject, in which he says, "The Christian, 
like the poet, is born, not made." How much evidence Prof. 
Drummond has collected to prove his position he does not 
say. He gives no illustration in its favor, but uses an argu- 
ment which belongs to the realm of the supernatural, and, 
therefore, not demonstrable. 

There are cases in evidence which prove that a mother has 
produced a christian character in her oJBfspring, through pre- 
natal influence, while at the same time she was unconscious 
of the efiPect it would have. The first case has become pub* 
lie property, through its publication in one of the current 
magazines, and is, as it were, from the subject's own lips. 
The second case was related by the father to the writer, Tlie 
article to which attention is called, is a sketch of Prof. Herroiij 
of Grinnell, Iowa, in the April, 1896, number of The Arena. 
A part of the article is interesting to students of heredity and 
kindred subjects, and is strong evidence in favor of maternal 
impressions. On taking pastoral charge of a certain clmrch. 
Prof. Herron said: "I may have been converted before I 

was bom During the year preceding my births my 

mother lived in an atmosphere of prayer, studying good books 
and brooding over her bible. She asked God to give her a 
child who should be His servant, and she besought God to 
keep me upon the altar of a perfect sacrifice, in the service 
of His Christ and her Redeemer She never again^ 


nor had she before, reached the spiritual height upon which 
eh© walked with God during the year of my birth. , , . , 
But nothing has ever been able to separate her from the be- . 
lief that in bringing me into the world, she had fulfilled tha 
purpose of her being, and she never doubted that I would be 
a messenger of God to my fellow men. Of all tins I knew 
nothing until after I had been preaching the Gospel, nor 
have I ever spoken of this before, either publicly or privately." 

As a companion picture and study, also further evidence 
as to the tremendous influence which, can be, and is oxorted 
by the mental condition of the prospective mother upon 
christian character, the following sketch, in which is related 
the result of another mother's longings and desires on the line 
of Christian work upon the brain structure of W. D., of W., 
is interesting. The father is an old and reliable merchant. 
Within the year of the birth of their third child, Mrs. D,, at 
family prayers and upon retiring, would ask the Lord to so 
guide her footsteps, that she would educate one of her two 
living boys, at that time aged seven and twelve years, to bo- 
come a minister of the Gospel. She earnestly desired that 
one of them should become a preacher of Christ and Him 
Crucified. She gave the prospective child no thought on 
that line. Mr. D. says his wife was fully engrossed with 
that idea. Note the result: The third child was a boy, very 
kind and loving in his disposition, conscientious in the 
extreme; as a child, preferred stories of the bible or such 
aa were of a religious nature. As he became old enough 
to choose his own reading matter, it was noticed that he pre- 
ferred the bible. He was bom in 1878, is at this writing 
eighteen years of age, and is preparing for the ministry. The 
eldest son, whom Mrs. D. wanted to make a preacher of, is a 
bookkeeper in a bank; the next son is connected with a min- 
ing company in Colorado. 

This case diflPers from Prof. Herron's in two particularg. 
First — There are no brothers or sisters mentioned in Profc 
Herron's case, so that environment cannot be taken into 


account. Second — Mrs. D. does not attribute the cause of her 
youngest boy's religious tendencies to supernatural causes, as 
did Mrs. Herron, who believed that it was a direct answer to 
her prayer. Upon the contrary, Mrs. D. believes that the 
formation of her child's brain upon christian lines was caused 
.by the longings and thoughts which occupied her mind at 
that period, and her desires impressed its brain substance in 
that direction, forming the brain soil in such a manner that 
it would readily imbibe and loved to receive religious instruc- 
tion. Mrs. D. says: "I had no idea at that time that a 
mother could so affect an unborn child, but I am firmly con- 
vinced of it now." She had no other children. 

Now, revert to environment, in the case of her two older 
boys, and see how little bearing education had upon them; 
air of her labors and her influence to make a preacher out of 
either was futile; she was unable to gtiide them in that diroc* 
tion; the brain soil was iK>t of the right consistency. Here 
is a case which is strong a argument against education being 
much of a factor in case the brain substance is developed in 
another direction, and proves that if the capacity or love for 
a line of work does not exist in an individual's make-np, 
teaching will not and cannot develop it; but if the desire m 
in a contrary direction, that person will, unless strongly re- 
tarded, get into the line for which he has an innate desire. 

In conclusion, a christian's brain must be constructed by 
the mother, through'her love for Christian work at the periods 
under discussion, or she is liable to produce an agnostic or an 
infidel organism. As was remarked in the opening of this 
chapter, there is no other question that is of more importance 
to the christian world than the subject of maternal impres- 
sions and its influence upon christian thought and character. 




At one of the maternity hospitals, it was said, ^'If anyone 
doubts, for a moment, the unmistakable transmission of de- 
sires that will modify character, both mental and physical, 
they have never given a study to the hospital side of life. . , 
, . But must have been engaged in laboratory investigations 
only To deny it, is to deny all experience/' 

The cause of the growth of offenses against the persons of 
the weaker sex, is one that has baffled all audents of crimin- 
ology, and various reasons are assigned for its increase. It 
is generally attributed to education and environment. Such 
argument lacks one essential, which is, that the evidence is 
against it; that is to say, the present system of education 
does not decrease criminality in any form. Upon the con- 
trary, where there is the highest grade of education there is 
found a larger percentage of crime. 

As regards the fundamental cause of offenses against the 
person, no writer has presumed to give a reaBon, except to 
re-iterate the old phrase, "It is innate.'^ In the work of a 
noted authority, Dr. Kraft Ebing's "Psycopathia Sexnalis," 
which is a book of reference for the medical profession, in 
which are related all known and verified sexual offenses, there 
is not a word, a hint, or a clue, as to the cause in any case. 

When the fact is considered that the offenses against the 
weaker portion of organized society, like all other misde- 
meanors, is increasing at a rapid rate, something should bo 



done to counteract the tendency. The disgraceful scenes 
enacted at what was known as the "Sherry dance/' in New 
York City in 1896, was the subject of a sermon by the Kev, 
Louis A. Banks at the Hanson Place M. E. church, Brooklyn, 
In his discourse he referred to the Seeley dinner at Sherry's 
thus: "If this vile revel had been given in some low dance- 
house by some ignorant thug who knew no better, one would 
understand it. But the horrible thing of it all is that it was 
given by a man who claims to be a gentlemaiv, and his 
guests were men of education and travel — men of large 
wealth and high social standing. Many of them are men 
of family and of influence in the community. Is this all our 
colleges can do for us? Is this the result of our boasted 
social advancement and refined ciilture? Think of our great 
publishing houses and commercial interests in the hands of 
such men, whose ideal way of having a *good time* is a te^mt 
where, according to the statement of the host himself, tlie 
songs sung, the dances performed, the exposure of person, 
and the whole aflFair was base, low,, vulgar, and sensual, and 
the most shocking thing about it all is that these men seemed 
to be so far depraved in their tastes that they have not the 
grace to be ashamed of it." The participants in that shame- 
ful orgie were indicted by the grand jury. 

This but adds evidence that immorality is growing at a 
rapid rate. Why a family of two or more children should 
vary in their desires on the line of sensuality, is a study of 
great importance to the good order of society. The sin of 
unchastity is rapidly increasing, undermining character and 
social order. The cause is the evil passion in man. But 
why one of the children in a family is licentious in thought, 
word and deed, and the others remain pure and virtuous, or 
who keep within the bounds of decency, is to most people^ to 
say the least, mysterious. It is generally excused upon the 
ground of heredity, and is said to be due to some streak of 
bad blood which has come down through a long line of 
ancestors, thus laying the blame and charge of immorality 


upon some persons who are unknown and unahle to defend 

The supernatural thinker says it is the will of God. or it 
would not have appeared; and those who take that position, 
at once proceed to prove that they are wrong, by insisting 
upon a thorough education to counteract the evil tendencies 
and try to overturn the will of God, which, they say, is the 
cause. Such an argument is a species of fatnlism, and if they 
really believed that it is God's will, they would not attempt 
to thwart his desires and by human eflForts overthrow or retard 
the work which the Creator is trying to do. They do not be- 
lieve it, but it is an easy way to avoid the subject and thus 
relieve themselves of any responsibility. It is unreasonable 
to suppose that the Creator has placed man here under a code 
of laws that are unchangeable; that some of His creatures 
were placed here for the purpose of degrading a few, and thus 
injure the whole. The idea is monstrous, and it would seem 
that no man endowed with full reasoning powers can accept 
the statement that God intended some of His creatures to be 
the victims of others, when the preservation of l^fe is not at 
stake, as in the case of animals which devour others to ap- 
pease hunger. Others say, that the cause is vicious and im- 
moral literature, and the association of boys and girls who 
are born with immoral tendencies. If that is the argument, 
then the question intrudes itself. Why are any of the boys 
and girls, from the best classes and the higher institutes of 
learning, born with immoral natures, when, in many cases, 
they are of the better element of society? 

That immoral associations do aflPect many a child, who, 
under other environments, would not liavo bocome lewd, is 
no doubt true, but careful observation leads to the conviction 
that those who are not born licentious, and who become im- 
moral through vicious books and associations, never become 
criminals on this line, that is, never commit outrages upon 
the opposite sex. Their indulgences are all within the limit 
of natural law and by mutual consent; nor do they usually 


offend by word or deed, neither are they addicted to the ex- 
cesses ; nor are they abnormal in their actions. They never 
commit those deeds which shock the average man; deeds 
which are .unmentionable, but are well known to all students 
of criminology, and to those who have charge of public insti- 

It is easy to discover a lewd nature. The observer will in 
a few moments find that their thoughts turn toward licen- 
tiousness, and in some cases with diflSculty restrain themselves 
in the use of indecent and lewd remarks. A man's mind and 
thoughts always turn to that which yields him the most en- 
joyment. It is wonderful how persons who are bom licen- 
tious show their propensities, and are irresistibly drawn toward 
each other — they quickly become intimate. This any close 
observer, who has ever been much of a traveler, knows is a 
fact. Such persons have tendencies so strong that they can- 
not be attributed to environment; it is inborn. 

A man who is inclined to lewdness sees the same charac- 
teristics in the opposite sex, in a hotel or on a train, and at a 
glance finds his affiuity. Such persons are drawn together by 
an unconscious power, which they cannot, or do not, resist, 
and all moral culture if^ thrown to the wind. A pure-minded 
woman does not attract such a man, only so far as her per- 
sonal apx)earance is concerned, and if he makes advances 
which are repelled, he quickly subsides. 

But to the question, Why are men and women of some of 
our so-called "best families" lewd and immoral? It is be- 
cause the parents were licentious, in thought or deed, while 
the brain of the offspring was forming. Such immoral 
thoughts and actions, with their effect upon the mind of the 
mother, has been registered upon the growing brain structure 
of the offspring. The mental action that is excited by the 
physical action of the mother, has increased the brain cells of 
her child, which are intended to govern those functions, and 
they have been enlarged at the expense of the brain cells 


which are intended to hold such propensities in check. [See 
chapter on Brain Formation.] 

In such cases the father is largely responsible. How? " 
When the wife is in the condition under investigation, the 
husband does not control himself, and by hia action excites 
the mother's nervous system, which is bound to produce the 
brain structure above mentioned. There ie another cause, 
which is solely chargeable to the mother, and that is, wliile 
in this condition, she allows lewd thoughts to occupy her 
mind, longs for or desires sensual action. This would have 
its effect upon the brain cells of her offspring, just as a long- 
ing for some article of food would form a desire for that par- 
ticular article. Every mother knows that the effect of such 
a longing is to m^ke the child a gourmand, so far as that par- 
ticular article is concerned, and tho logic is that the same 
effect will be produced on other lines, 

This peculiar condition of the brain soil cannot be over- 
come by education. Culture can only restrain the propen- 
sities when the brain cells are not strongly developed upon 
immoral lines. If the individuars animal passion is naturally 
very strong, no amount of reproof or instruction will ovor- 
come it, just as in the case of a born criminal. It is unneces- 
sary to go into details upon the subject. It is self-evident that 
tho class of human beings under discussion are born with a 
desire for licentiousness, as other persons are bom with 
other predominant traits, physical and mental. 

Go to. an asylum for feeble-minded children and see the 
poor, helpless, idiotic, deformed and epileptic children. 
Then think of the many who are not dependent upon the 
state, who are the skeletons in the closets of their homes. Did 
the parents of these poor, helpless ones do their duty? Has 
organized society done its duty in neglecting to educate the 
mothers how to prevent the production of such as are not 
well-born? 'Tis true the answer could be truthfully given, 
We did not know that such abnormities could be obviated. 
A few hints have been given here and there by persons whose 



pretenses were in the nature of charlatanism, but a complete 
exposition has never been attempted. 

In conclusion, if it is admitted that criminals are born, as 
are poets, artists, musicians and all so-called geniuses — 
and scientific investigators agree that they are borii, not 
made — then the conclusion must be, that impure thoughts 
and impure expression, on the part of the parents, must 
affect the mind of their offspring, which leads to imbecility 
of the body and, naturally, weakens the mind, leaving its 
impress for all time and eternity. 



mothers' longings. 

**It is strictljr and philosophically tniGt In Qaturii and In reaaoii, tbat tbera la 
no such thin^r as chance." 

[Prospective mothers are advised to read this chapter, 
and "Advice to Prospective Mothers," at once; also the 
chapter upon "Epilepsy."] 

Physicians say that the 
peculiar idiosyncrasies or ab- 
normal desires of prospeptive 
mothers are increasing, and 
they assign no reason for it. 
It is no doubt caused by the 
mothers being as uneasy and 
restless as the average fathers, 
husbands, and brothers, and 
the effect is damaging to their 
offspring. No doubt the so- 
cial condition of the age has , 
much to do with the general 
feeling of unr^t and excite- 
ment. The mother's mind is 
engrossed with the many so- 
cial duties which are laid up- 
on her, so that at the time when she should be paBsive and 
quiet, her mind is on the go, if not her body. She longs to 
attend this gathering, that party; go to this concert and that 
show, horse race, ball game or some other exciting occupation, 


and in this way, through ignorance of the eflPect such things 
may have upon her offspring, she entails upon her child traits 
of character that are undesirable, and in many instances are 
a blight upon the whole life of her child. 

How can the injurious effects which are bound to follow 
such abnormal desires, be counteracted and the injury over- 
come? It is an important question. It can be done by a 
proper education of the mothers; by teaching them the effect 
of Buch abnormal desires, and at the same time, how to pre- 
vent injurious consequences. At such times prospective 
mothers are inclined to become morbid. They often give way 
to feelings of depression; have a depraved appetite and long 
for unusual foods, or have some other uncommon desires. As 
a mother values the purity of her sons, and the virtue of her 
daughters, she must keep her thoughts pure, and her desires 
normal. At such a time any wish to commit murder, by a 
desire to be relieved from maternity, or longing in that direc- 
tion, will result in producing a murderous brain in her off- 
spring. The thoughts of murder, or the desire to see blood 
flow, will produce a destructive brain in her child. This was 
proven in the Pomeroy case in Boston, referred to in Part I. 
A boy aged 14, enticed two children about three years old, 
into a church and killed them in his insane desire to see blood 
flow. At the trial his mother testified that she often went to 
the slaughter house to see her husband butcher, and it always 
pleased her to see blood flowing. It was not her wish when 
she was in a normal condition. This was preceding the birth 
of this boy. 

Such destructive tendencies are caused by an abnormal 
brain development, and its effects can be seen in a child who 
delights to kill insects or pull the wings from them, then lets 
them go maimed and mangled; and in the boy who will mal- 
treat animals, pleased if he throws a stone which breaks a 
bird's wing, or the leg of a cat. 

It is noticeable in a child who has a blind impulse to de- 
stroy everything within reach, especially when in a passion, 


and others who are naturally destructive, even to breaking 
their playthings to pieces, "Just for fun." Some have at- 
tacks of crying, striking and biting everyone within reach 
when in a passion, and the child is said to have a bad temper. 
Dr. Greisner, an authority upon brain disorder, says that 
such outbursts of temper, or anger, on the part of a child, are 
a true mania, and are caused by malformation of the brain. 
Why is it that one or more of the children in a family are of 
this temper, when the others are gentle and kind? It is be- 
cause the mother had just such periods of ill-temper while the 
brain of her oflFspring was forming. Such out-bursts of tem- 
per are reproduced in her child. The irritability may have 
been unusual for that mother, but the eflFect is the same. 
Nature does not make any mistake, "Like begets like." 

There is not an observing mother in the land but knows 
that these statements are in the main correct. Here and there 
one may deny it, but such mothers are excusable upon the 
ground that they have a poor memory, or lack the power of 
perception. It cannot be otherwise; nature would be untrue 
to itself, if it produced an ugly, ill-natured child, from a 
mother who is, at such a time, good-natured and kindly dis- 
posed. The more we investigate, the more deeply we become 
impressed with the truth of the theory, That every immoral 
or licentious thought; every out-burst of temper and all ex- 
hibitions of hatred; every hypocritical expression, as well as 
every thoughtful humane act or sympathetic deed, is sure to 
record itself in the plastic brain structure of the forming 
child. All emotions shape its faculties and create its men- 
tality and character for good or for evil. In short, not a 
thought which passes through the mother's mind but it leaves 
its record upon the structure of that embryonic brain. Dr. 
Brittan calls it "A kind of electrotyping upon the sensitive 
brain form." 

The words of Longfellow aptly apply: "No action, 
whether foul or fair, is ever done, but it leaves somewhere a 
record, written by fingers ghostly, as a blessing or a curse, 


and mostly in the greater good or evil which follows it/' 
A mother's wishes or desires may be beneficial or injarioua 
to her own personality; in either case, it will correspondingly 
affect her offspring. It rests wholly with the mother to di- 
rect her mind in the proper channels at such times, and above 
all, she should not allow her temper to overcome her at those 
periods; if she does, she must expect the same in her child. 
It is inevitable, as "Hysterics in the mother is apt to develop 
insanity in the child." The highest medical authority main- 
tains this assertion, and it cannot be successfully controverted. 
If that be true, it follows that lesser mental action, either on 
the line of ill-temper or any other disposition, must have a 
corresponding effect. If good, it is well; if bad, the mother 
must know how to overcome it, or the child will surely reap 
the reward of the mother's ill-tamper or low spirits. A pros- 
X)ective mother should be taught how to overcome such men- 
tal abnormities — that is, their bad effects. If she earnestly 
desires to counteract a had influence^ she should hope and 
long that it will not do any harm. The result will be bene- 
ficial to that forming brain. That very longing and desire 
on the part of the mother will have a corresponding effect 
upon her child. This idea is drawn from, and the phenomena 
is explained by, the fact that the mother, through her long- 
ings, creates the brain substance which is to control the de- 
sires which her child will possess. It is only necessary to 
dwell upon them. [This is fully explained in the chapter on 
Brain Formation.] 

The conclusion to which this argument leads, is, Tliat 
every thought of the prospective mother is registered, or im- 
pressed, upon the brain substance of the expectant child; and 
the logic of the argument is. That at every moment of time, 
sleeping or waking, while the mother is in the condition 
under discussion, the process of development in the child is 
going on; that at every moment there are atoms of flesh, 
blood and bones added to it. These must be affected by the 
mother, not by some other person. If this is conceded, then 



the mother's mental action necessarily changes the outer 
form, which is seen after birth. Would it be logical to co;i- 
tend that she doea not change the inner i>art of this forming 
body, which we cannot see — the brain? 

The process by or through which the child is affected is 
imknown, but it is well known to the medical fraternity thnt 
mental impressions do affect the offspring. The question is 
asked. Should a prospective mother resist the unusual and 
peculiar desires or notions which the average woman is liable 
to have at such times? Peculiarities which cannot be ac- 
counted for; desires that seem to be entirely foreign to her 
in her normal condition. No one has as yet fathomed the 
process which produces them. How the nervous center of 
the brain is so peculiarly afifected, no scientist can explain, 
and it is of no consequence so far as this study is concerned. 

Some ihoughtless husbands are inclined to sneer and 
laugh at their wives — call them foolish for harboring suck 
peculiar notions^but such a course is wrong. 

In answer to the question, Should the mother gratify the 
unusual desire? the answer is both TeSj and No. If the long- 
ing is neither indecent or immoral and can bo easily gratified^ 
and the husband, by sympathizing with the wife, can over^ 
come her feelings, so that reason and good sense will banish 
the desire, no perceptible injurious results will follow. If it 
be a wish for some article of food out of season, or a desire to 
go somewhere which will not be a burden to the husband, 
the answer is, Yes, gratify it. Or, if the desire is for some- 
thing which the mother thinks should not be done — ^as, for 
instance, Mrs. I. W.* of L., who was an ardent W. O. T. U. 
member^ radical in her objection to the use of liquor, had an 
intense longing for a drink of wliiskey—HSome thing entirely 
foreign to her general nature. She spurned the thought, as 
it would be hypocritical for her as a christian and a temper- 
ance advocate. She told her husband that she was unable to 
overcome the desire ; she could not get it out of her mind. 
They had studied the subject of maternal impressions, and 


decided tbat she should take it as she would a dose of medi- 
cine, as it was to cure a diseased mind. Mr. W* bought a 
si^c-ounce bottle of it, and she drank the whole of it at oncej 
prepared herself for bed, as they expected that it would in- 
toxicate her- but, to their surprise, it had no perceptible 
effect upon her. This was evidence that her system needed 
the stimulant. She had no more longings of that kind. In 
that case tliose parents acted the part of sensible people. 

If tlie desire is for some immoral or licentious action, it 
must be banished from the mind. If the mother lacks the 
will-power to enable her to overcome the impure thoughts 
and is a believer in the efficacy of prayer, she should ask the 
Lord to assist her to overcome the evil which is in her 
mind. Tliat very act would counterbalance and eqttalize 
the hrain cells of her offspring. And the mother who is 
not a praying woman, should say, "I will not harbor the 
immoral desires. I hope my child will not have such 

It is positively essential to the welfare of posterity that 
all longings, which in their nature are detrimental to society 
in the individual, and which the true mother does not want 
to entail utxjn her child, must be driven from her mind, and 
in its stead let her thoughts linger upon the qualities which 
she desires that her child should possess. There is another 
thing which should be considered in this connection, and 
in regard to which mothers should be warned. That is: If 
she desires that her child should become proficient on a 
line which 13 in its nature idealistic, — that is, deals largely 
with the imagination, as for instance, a musician, or an 
artist; both of them belong to the realm of romance. If she 
produces a thoroughly artistic brain, it will be at the ex- 
pense of some other part of the brain structurOj and may 
result in an unbalanced mind, so that her child will be 
weak on other points. We have in mind a mother who 
was wholly engrossed with the idea that her child should 
become a devout christian, as her husband was an infidel. 



Th© result was a babe who was very largely developed in 
the frontal region; that is, it had a large brain formation 
io the region of veneration, and lacked in the vital and 
animal propensities. The child died at three years of age 
from water on the brain. It had an enormous, abnormal 
head. So the advice to a mother is, use judgment^ and do 
not brood over any particular idea while in the condition 
under discussion. 

The efiPect of maternal impressions upon the mind and 
character of a child bom of a keen, intellectual mother, is 
much greater than to one of dull comprehension. The 
gluggish mind of the latter is not as quick to perceive, and 
her mind is slow to act; nor can she transmit such positive 
characteristics as the intelligent mother, who is deeply im- 
pressed by ideas which would have no eflFect upon the 
dullard. The cumulative evidence of the age is, that similar 
produces similarity; and what the mother is at that time, 
mentally, morally and physically, she is bound to reproduce. 
Maternal impressions aflPect the development, form and 
character of the prospective child. It affects not only form 
of body, but character of the mind and purity of soul. 
Idiocyj mania, and those who are boni blind, or deaf, also 
all of the so-called "freaks of nature," are caused by an in- 
terference with the laws of nature — never otherwise — and 
the production of imperfectly formed beings should be 
averted by an education upon that line. 

If the mind of the expectant mother is from any cause 
unduly excited, it necessarily affects the structure of her 
oiTspring, and good or evil passions are transmitted as surely 
ne are facial expressions. If the mother is in a joyous mood 
while forming one brain, and sullen and ugly in another case, 
ghe must produce corresponding character. Such reciprocity 
is perfect; it cannot be otherwise — Like produces like. 

Never nurse a sick or injured person while in that con- 
dition. That is, do not let the mind dwell upon the case, 
but instead, hope that your child will not be affected by this 



injury to your husband or brother. [See the caBe of Mrs. C, 
whose husband's eyes were diseased, and her babe was born 
with only one eye.] 

The investigation of the subject of maternal impressions, 
and all the cases which are in evidence, point to the inevi- 
table conclusion that mind exerts powerful influence over 
matter, especially when under certain conditions^ it moulds 
and fixes the inherent character of man. If it were possible 
to oflFer a fecial permit that would insure perfect offspring, — 
perfect not only physically, but mentally, many parents would 
be willing to give a goodly sum for the power to reproduce 
an exact counterpart of their ideal, and the government of 
the state and nation could afford to use a part of the sum 
which is now expended in the care of the dependent and 
defective classes, to educate the coming mothers and thus 
lessen the production of imbeciles and criminals. The dis- 
semination of knowledge as to the influence of maternal 
impressions would be one of the means to attain that end. 
It is important to every parent as well as to society, and its 
benefits are innumerable and invaluable. 

It is incumbent upon the state to adopt measures which 
will insure the future well-being of posterity. It is done to 
produce physical health. Why not do the only effective 
thing for moral health? i. e., teach the laws which govern 
reproduction. All other plans for the prevention of crime 
and malformations have been only partially successful, and 
this line of education is the only one which appeals to sound 
reason and judgment, from the fact that a knowledge of the 
laws of reproduction and their adaptation is successful in the 
case of the animal species, and the converse detrimental. 
The moral cost to mankind of ignorance upon this subject 
is incalculable. 






*"lli« destiny of the nations lies far more in the hAnda of women— the mothers 
^^an Id the hands of those who possess power^ or tboee who are innovators, who 
seldom understand themselves. We must cultivate tlie motbers, who are the 
educators of the human race, else the next geaeratlou cannot accomplish its 
taak."— Fnwftel. 

[Prospective mothers are advised to read tbis chapter and 
Mother's Longings, without fail, at once, leaving the other 
chapters for leisure hours.] 

"What a powerful influence is mother's love; it is world- 
wide. The deep, all-absorbing, wondrous mother's love is 
something that man cannot understand; it is to him a mys- 
tery which he cannot fathom. It is rooted in the unconscious 
law of life." There is a tendency in the minds of inexperi- 
enced mothers, and particularly among those who are only 
partially familiar with the fact, to boliove that sudden alarms 
and accidents, will result disastrously to their prospective 
offspring. This idea is in the main correct, and many a 
mother has suffered mental torture, worrying and fearing, yet 
hoping that a shock she has experienced, and which has 
arrested development, will not produce any unpleasant result. 
The very fact of hoping and longing will overcome such 
arrested development 

Some become the victims of false and misleading theories, 
which are current among those who are fall of crude notions, 
upon a very important subject, and there are some older ones 
who doubt the effect of a scare or shock. Their argument is 


that comparatively few out of the many births show any ill 
effects; but this is unwarranted, for, in a careful investiga- 
tion, it is found that nearly every other person has a mark 
which is attributable to a shock, or a longing which the 
mother had, and it is called a birth-iqaark. It may be ever so 
slight, yet it adds evidence to the theory of maternal influ- 
ence. The most damaging idea is one held and taught by 
nearly all who are conversant with the subject, including 
many physicians, which is, that if a shock is experienced, 
dismiss it at once; mothers are told not to dwell upon it. We 
believe this advice to be wrong. It is now maintained that a 
scare to the mother acts like an electric shock, which arrests 
development; and investigation shows that when the mother 
hae succeeded in dismissing the subject, and has refused to 
allow her mind to dwell upon it, the result has been to dis- 
figure her child, by not counteracting the arrested develop- 
ment by hoping that the shock would not disfigure her child. 
The following case is noted, wherein logical reasons are 
given to show how a mother may counteract the effects of 
such a scare: Mrs. B. of R., a short time after her marriage, 
was sitting alone sewing, when a tramp came to the door, put 
both arms against the screen door and in a rough voice said, 
**Cau't you give me something, I ain't got no hands?" Mrs. 
B. put both liands up to her face and screamed, "Mother! 
Mother!" Tlie mother drove the tramp out of her sight, but 
Mrs- B, could not get him out of her mind, and continually 
wished and hoped that her child would have perfect hands. 
That was her continu^ prayer up to the time of its birth; the 
child was bom with perfectly formed hands; in fact, no de- 
fect of any kind was noticeable. She is at this writing four- 
teen years of age. This scare may have done some injury to 
the forming brain or body, as it was a severe shock to Mrs. 
B., and we have a right to assume that it arrested the devel- 
opment j but her longing and praying, "Oh, I hope that my 
child will not be injured by this shock which I have experi- 
enced/' is the reason why it was not affected, and accounts 


for the fact that bo many are not marked when the mother 
has been frightened. If a mental action on the part of the 
mother can arrest development, it is logical to ansume that 
mental action can assist development. 

The deduction is, that if Mrs. B. had not longed and 
prayed as she did, her child wonld have been marked. Who 
is competent to assert dogmatically that the shock would not 
have affected her babe? The fact that bo many are bom 
normal, and are not affected by the mother's mentality so far 
as can be seen, does not disprove onr theory. There may be 
a mental injury which cannot be seen but it affects the child 
just the same as if it were noted. The conclusion is, that 
when a mother has had a shock, she should wish and hope 
that she may overcome the injury, and thus push forward the 
development which may have been arrested. 

Now, to illustrate a case where the mother had strength 
of mind and will strong enough to dismiss a sight which 
shocked her, and she did just as she had been told; note the 
result: Mrs. W. of W., on the 4th of July, 1895, was looking 
at a display of fire-works, and sat within arms-length of a 
woman who had a babe in her lap. A spent rocket stick 
struck the child in the head, entering the brain and killed the 
child. Mrs. W. was horrified at the sight, and by force of 
will banished all thoughts of it from her mind, refusing to 
dwell upon it for fear of the results to her prospective child. 
Three months later her babe was bom. It had a perpendicu* 
lar depression in the right side of the head, into which a lead 
pencil can be placed. The cavity is so deep that the pencil 
cannot be seen from the front. What effect it will have upon 
the child's intellect cannot be told. The child was less than 
six months' of age when the parent gave the writer the 
history of this occurrence. Mrs. W. had known of shocks at 
such times producing imperfect formation, and she did just 
as she had been taught, — banished the thought of the accident 
from her mind, and refused to dwell upon it. Suppose Mre. 
W. had hoped and longed that her child would not be dis* 


figured, who will assert that it would have been injured just 
the same? Or is it fair to assume, that if she had hoped and 
longed to overcome the eflPect of the shock, she would have 
assisted nature in adding flesh and bone cells where the 
injury was located. 

It is admitted that the mother can destroy or build op 
nerve cells by the action of her mind, as in the case of simple 
birth-marks. It cannot be successfully controverted that a 
mother does add flesh, bone and sinews in the case of mon- 
strosities — takes from one part and adds to another, — but her 
powers in that direction are as yet a sealed book. The im- 
portant question in this argument is: Shall a prospective 
mother be advised not to worry over the scare or shock, and 
dismiss it at once? or should the advice be: Hope and pray 
that it will not affect your child? We unhesitatingly advise 
the latter course; it can not do any harm; only good will 
he the result. 

Mothers, do not become downcast, or give way to the idea 
that the shock will be an injury; rather let your will assist in 
the development of the cells that were arrested in their 
g]*owth. And do not live in continual fear that something is 
going to happen. Such mental action will produce a nervous 
temperament, and your child will always live in fear thai 
something is going to happen, and it will become, as it were, 
a bundle of nerves and be unable to control them. Live your 
daily life in the manner and way you would prefer that your 
child should live, and discard all thoughts and desires that 
are not good for yourself at other times, and if there is any 
particular trait of character you want your child to possess, 
as for instance, music, or some profession, let that be upper- 
most in your mind; and in wishing for it you will add to tlio 
nerve cells which control the musical faculty or professional 
ability, the emotions or any other function, but, as has been 
remarked, do not brood over it. 

A gray-haired lady, Mrs. S. of M — , with tears in her eyes, 
said to the author: "Before the birth of my son, I had some 



Lard words with my husband and resolved that I would not 
speak to him again until ha apologized, when it oct^unred 
to m© that my child might bo born unable to talk. I at 
once overlooked his ill-treatment and was contented. At 
this time he stinted my allowaace of funds, and I stole from 
the money drawer. My son will steal any valuables from his 
own folks and sell them to get money — took his sister's watch 
and my gold chain, a new suit and a diamond pin of his 
father's; but he has never been known to take a thing from 
anyone except his nearest relatives." She added, with the 
tears running down her cheeks, *'You can rest assured, I 
would not mention this, but do so in hopes that it may be 
a warning to some other mother." 

In case a mother desires a certain characteristio in her 
child, if she longs for it, her wishes will be gratified. To 
illustrate: Mrs. I. of P — , has an exceptionally bright child 
When the child was three months old that fact was com- 
mented upon by som^ of her friends, when the mother said, 
''I impressed that upon her." "How did you come to do 
that?" the writer asked. She replied, "I haH seen so many 
dull children in my school work, who could not understand 
what was told them. I wanted my child to be quick to per- 
ceive and to comprehend, and let my mind dwell ujxjn it, 
hoping to get a favorable result. I had been told that it 
could be done, and I am convinced that it is possible.'' 
As the child grew, her ability to understand and comprehend 
was remarkable. 

An illustration of the injurious effect of quiet, persistent 
thought, the mother entirely unconscious of the effect it 
would have: Mrs. J. of L— j has a son, at this writing, aged 
17, whose physical defects^ when standing stiU, would not 
be noticed; but when he walks, instead of lifting bis feet, 
drfigs his toes, — that is to say, places one foot forward and 
drags the other up, placing it ahead and dragging the other 
after it. His mother said: "Before his birth, a hog belong- 
ing to me had injured its back, and I often looked at it. 



sympatheticEiUy wond^ng what I could do for it, and this 
was the cause of my child's infirmity." By this quiet, per- 
sistent mental process, she arrested the development of the 
cells from which the nerves and muscles are constructed^ and 
which would have controlled the movement of that boy's feet. 

We assert tljat each and every thought, or emotion, which 
passes through the mother's mind, is impressed upon the 
yielding body which she is forming. Even the muscles and 
nerves, as well as the brain, of a child may be affected by the 
mother's mentality. 

To illustrate: Mrs. O. of M — , in passing over a foot- 
bridge, fell into the pond, and involuntarily held her breath 
as she went under the water. Her child, bom shortly after 
this accident, will at times, while asleep, catch and hold its 
breath, just as thQ mother did when she fell into the water. 

No up-to-date physician will deny that such effects are 
liable to be produced, but will warn his patients to beware of 

If the desire is for some particular article of food, a long- 
ing for it will produce the desire in the child. for the same 
thing, Mrs. S, of R — , said to the author: "A few hours 
after the birth of my third child, it was noticed to be, as it 
was called, rooting around, trying to get something into its 
mouth, as it lay upon the pillow. My sister, who wag acting 
as nurse, said: *What does this child want?' I replied, 'I 
think it wants some fresh beef.' My husband, who had 
always refused to believe that a mother's impressions affected 
a child, made light of it. The sister said to my husband, 
'Let us try and see if this baby knows what it wants; you go 
and get a piece of beef and a piece of pork.' They were 
brought, and a piece of the latter was tied into a cloth, 
making a sort of teat out of it; this was offered to the babe, 
but he refused it. It was put into his mouth, but he spit 
it out> Then a piece of beef was offered in the same mau^ 
Her, This was eagerly accepted; he sucked it a few moments, 
after which there was no more rooting around. My husband 


was instantly converted to the truth of maternal impressions, 
an opinion which I had often asserted and which he, up to 
that moment, had refused to believe." 

A different case: Mrs. W. of P — , an Israelite, before the 
birth of her first child, smelled fried pork and longed for a 
taste of it, but her religion forbade. The father was relating 
the circumstances — the boy was at this time 21 years old — 
when the mother said, "I can taste it yet." When the boy 
was bom he positively refused th^ breast or bottle. The 
nurse asked, "What does this child want?" The mother re- 
plied, "I do not know of anything except pork." The father 
at once got a strip of pork, let the child suck it a few 
moments. He was then ready to nurse. The father added: 
"The rabbi has taught him that hell wa» yawning before 
him and he would go there sure, if he ate pork, but pork he 
will eat in spite of the warning." 

When an infant moans and worries, crying in unmistak- 
able tones of entreaty, and ik) cause for pain can be found, 
how often the remark is made, "What does this child want?" 
It puzzles the parent and nurse. Let the mother consider 
whether she had longed for some article of food or drink, 
and if so, then give it a taste; if that is not what it wants, 
it will be refused, but in most cases it will relieve the child 
at once. 

Illustration: A child of Mrs. G. of C. F., when it was 
three days old some beef was put on to cook. The child 
began to cry piteously. Someone said, "What is the matter 
with the baby?" The mother replied, "It wants some of that 
beef." A small piece was given it to suck, and at once it was 

Such incidents have been frequently related by mothers 
to the author, since the problem of maternal impressions has 
been under investigation, and my conclusions are, that the 
child is craving for the particular article which the mother 
longed for, and the fact is so important and so valuable a 
contribution to the general investigation of the subject of 


maternal imijressions, that it was .thought proper to make a 
note of it in this chapter. It is offered in the nature of a 
hint, which any mother or nurse can try without risk to 
the child. It will at once show by its actions whether that 
article is what it wanted or not; that is, if it craves an oyster 
it would not accept a piece of beef, and what it is seeking for 
we think it should have, in moderation, for its full develop- 
ment. See case of Mrs. B., Chapter I., whose grandchild 
wanted fat pork. 

The author is aware that he is inviting criticism, but 
hopes that intelligent criticisms may assist in developing the 
truth. He is also cognizant that his conclusions are contrary 
to the idea which underlies a law lately passed in France 
which prohibits the giving of any solid food to a child under 
eleven months of age. Nor do we wish to be understood that 
a child should be fed daily upon the article, but simply mean 
that a taste of the thing it craves is needed to develop its 
physical nature, and its organism demands the article for 
which it is seeking, as in one case orange, another fish, and 
one an oyster. More illustrations could be given, but they 
are unnecessary. 

It would be advisable for every physician, mother or 
nurse, to remember the remarks of a medical professor to his 
class, as related by a physician to the writer. The professor 
stepped on the platform at a clinic, (a lecture to medical stu- 
dents) and said: "Grentlemen, I have just come from the in- 
vestigation of a peculiar case. Two weeks ago I attended a 
patient, whose baby has cried and moaned almost continu- 
ously since its birth; the parents have had sleepless nights 
and uncomfortable days on its account. I was called again 
to-day, and made a careful examination, but could find nothing 
wrong; I then asked the mother if there was anything she 
had longed for. She replied, *Yes, I wanted a taste of beer.' 
I sent for a bottle, gave the child a teaspoonf ul of it, and at 
once it was quiet. I have been watching that child over two 
hour© since, but not a sound has escaped its lips." The pro- 


fesBOr then proceeded with bis lecture to the class* Did the 
medical world profit by this experience? We say, No. It 
passed from memory; no record was made of it, as there is no 
account of it in medical lore, and the doctor who related the 
circumBtaijce added, "I have never thought of it, until your 
conversation recalled the incident." 

The reader is requested not to infer that feeding a baby 
solid food or beer is advised, only in cases as are hef*e de- 
scribedi and then only in the nature of medicine. 

Mrs, G., of K., just after her marriage, took charge of an 
orphan baby, to which she became very mcch attached. As 
the time approached when she would be unable to attend to 
the orphan, it was placed in other hands and became afflicted 
with erysiijelas, which appeared on the left ear, spreading 
over the face. A daily report of its condition was made to 
Mrs. G. First the left ear was swollen; then it spread to the 
middle of the left cheek; next it had reached the middle of 
the face; then the right cheek; next the right ear, disappear- 
ing in the same manner. Her child was born shortly after. 
When he was seven months old, something which looked like 
erysipelas, but there was no eruption, appeared upon his left 
ear, then spread over the face to the right ear, exactly as in 
the case of the orphan baby. At the time the mother related 
these facts the boy was seventeen years old, never had any- 
thing of the kind since, nor is there a trace of erysipelas in 
the entire family. 

If the mother's thoughts have reference to an emotion, it 
will afifect that part of the brain which governs that particular 
emotion. Take the case of Mrs. T., of K,: A few months 
after her marriage some girl friends called upon her, and in 
fun pointed their fingers at her, saying, "Ain't you ashamed 
of yourself," referring to her condition. After they were gone 
Mrs. T. went to her room and cried over the girls' remarks. 
Her child, when last seen by the writer, was six years of age, 
and if anyone, stranger or friend, points a finger at her, she 
will burst into a fit of crying, and she cannot be cured of it. 


Another case is given, as a lesson to young mothers: Mrs. 
M., of la., has three sons, who, when small, were known as 
the town sneaks — they would never stand out openly on the 
sidewalk with other boys, but would get behind a tree, or box, 
or the corner of the house, unconsciously 'trying to hide their 
bodies. The mother was very bashful and sensitive. She 
persistently refused to show herself while in the condition 
under discussion, and always tried to hide her body behind 
something; in the store she would get behind a pile of goods 
or the show case. Her sons are now grown to manhood, but 
have never overcome that peculiarity; in all other respects 
they are model characters. 

It would be advisable to impress upon the minds of mar- 
ried women, under middle age, never to visit blind asylums, 
insane hospitals, or reformatory institutions, or to look at any 
object that would be liable to return to the memory, at the 
periods we are discussing. The memory of unusual objects 
is liable to return and fix itself in the mother's mind, and if 
ignorant of the efiPect, she may — I do not say will — produce 
an imbecile or a deformed offspring. We say never visit such 
places, or look at such objects, unless — now mark the con- 
clusion— i^nZess she is thoroughly schooled upon the subject, 
and has been taught how to overcome uncanny sights. If she 
is educated upon that line, she will know that one mental 
action will counteract its opposite, and will be able to coun- 
teract improper impressions. 

There can be no possible harm arising from a thorough 
education upon this line. An intelligent comprehension of 
the natural law which governs mothers at such times, will en- 
able a mother t^ use her common sense in connection with 
her God-given maternal instincts; these, combined with phys- 
ical health, can only be productive of good. Again we say, 
that a study of maternal impressions will be beneficial in its 
results to the parents, and what is of much more importance, 
a blessing to the child, and the world. 

Mothers, draw your own conclusions. The case is stated 


in as plain a manner as it can be given, and if the result is 
that only one human being will be saved from some affliction, 
the time and thought expended will have been amply rep^iid, 
even though we may never be conscious that good has been 
done. The theory here advanced, if thoroughly disseminated, 
can only be productive of good to future generations* 

This entire subject is, to most persons, problematical, but 
a study of it will lead to positive convictions, and I firmly be- 
lieve that the theory of Maternal Impressions is the correct 
one; nor has the writer hesitated to follow any line of investi- 
gation to its legitimate conclusions in every phase of the sub- 
ject that has presented itself, and has been irr^istably led to 
the convictions here given. Whether true or false^ it all hap- 
pens as though it were true. 







The following is added to enable parents to mfiko and 
preserve the record of the various items as are noted, from 
birth, every fifth year, until majority. Such a record will be 
of great assistance in the study of a child's adErii^tability. It 
is arranged so that it will be easy to fill the blanks. In its 
life history, it would be desirable to consult with some inti- 
mate friend, and its teacher as well, in the tenth and fif- 
teenth years' statement; coming from unbiased minds it 
would be, perhaps, nearer correct. 

Under the head of special traits, its natural liabits or 
characteristics should be noted. Is it orderly or disorderly; 
its care of clothes and playthings; is it kind and gentle, or 
cruel toward its companions or pets; noisy or quiet; a tease 
or the reverse; active or slow in movement; fond of reading 
or the reverse; also any other peculiarity. 

In the parent's record: The mother's disposition and 
mental condition should be noted; was she angry or pleased 
to discover her condition, or did she wish to be freed from 
her burden; did she have any longing for any particular 
article of food, or desire any other thing; did she wish for 
the ability to be a good musician, actor, conversationalist, or 
wish that she could do some other special thing. 

All such points, if recorded honestly, with no attempt to 
conceal, will throw a great deal of light as to the effect of 
maternal impressions upon a child's future, and it may be of 



great Talue to the child in its mature years as a guide when 
its time comes to be a parent. 


Sex Dtitc of Blrth_ 












Marks or OefomtLtEe^ 
?i\]eh a» Mules, HalHip, 
Club-font, ani the pre- 
sumed eauaett. 

AtBJrth .. 

6th Year,. 


10th Year , 

15th Year , 

SOth Vear . 

Its Life History, which would embrace: 










Lik&s and Dislikes 



5th year,. 

10th Year 

15th Year , 

SOth Year . 


^^B^iSr-r:::::: ^^o'oti,yes{^^--: colore J s«5.ti: 

MotheT'BmentalCondltlon:— Pleased, or not? * .... , *.».... 

Any quiet, steady impression? The thing longed for. * . . . . , , . . 

Was she shocked at any time? Did she study any specialty? **..,,. 





"A point which yesterday was invisible, is a goal to-day, and will be the itart- 
fug point to-morrow." 

Before an intelligent investigation can be carried on, in 
regard to the disorder in mankind known as Epilepsy, it will 
be necessary to define the term. 

That which is adopted in this work, is: An epileptic has 
a weakened brain structure and is, in addition, physically 
weak, from the fact that the entire organism has been injured 
by the causes which weakened the brain process, Aii idiot 
proper, is not physically weak; there is an unbalanced 
brain, that is, too much in some parts and not enough in 
other sections, to equalize it. 

An epileptic may be an idiot also, not alone because of a 
weak brain structure, but it may be unbalanced; so that the 
idiotic epileptic has a structurally abnormal brain- at the 
same time it is unevenly distributed, which makes the indi- 
vidual idiotic as well as epileptic. In the investigation and 
treatment of the subject, "The Cause of Epilepsy," it was im- 
possible to find any conclusions among those who are con- 
sidered to be experts upon the question; not an idea or 
suggestion can be found which will enable a student of 
causation to begin; nor a hint how to proceed with its study. 
So that the object of this chapter, is not alone to warn the 
reader how to avoid the production of epileptics, but also to 
suggest a plan by which the student may discover more facts. 


which will lead to still closer data, and he may possibly 
arrive at definite conclusions as to the inciting cause of 

The anatomical data to which reference is made, clearly 
proves that epilepsy is a brain disorder^ It is indisputable, 
and must be accepted, coming as it does from most emineat 
authority; so that in its study, the basis from which to begin 
an investigationj is the brain structure. That will lead to 
and develop the cause in the balance of the organism. 

In this argument there is no attempt to indulge in pre^ 
conceived ideas, as there were none; no writer can be found 
who has arrived at any conclusion, except the anatomical 
data referred to in this chapter, which is conceded by all 
experts upon epilepsy, if there are any. 

The study of eminent authorities aud investigations at 
imbecile asylums and insane hospitals, as well as at the homes 
of epilepties, has led to the conclusions given in this work. 
The most satisfactory data was found in interviewing the 
mothers. That was the fountain head, as it were, and facts 
were discovered from wliich a premise conld be formulated 
that was much more satisfactory than all the **We do not 
knows" of all scientists. 

With these preliminary remarks, a few quotations tiom 
so-called experts upon epilepsy are submitted: 

The reader will bear in mind that we are investigating con- 
genital epilepsy only— that is, those who are born epileptics. 

Dr. Da Costa says: ''Epilepsy is a symptom, and not a 

Dr. Gray says: "Our conception of epilepsy will be greatly 
simplified, if at the outset we recognize the fact that 
epilepsy is but a symptom, just as is a cough or fever, so that 
epilepsy may be divided into those cases which are due to 
recognizable organic disease; those that are reflex, and those 
which we may call idiopathic. In rare cases, epilepsy may 
be caused by disease of tbe heart and of the kidneys, occa- 
sionally impairment of function of the intellectual organs, 


and rarely of the lungs." He says further: "The brain cells 
of an epileptic are in a condition of high instability; are 
liable to pass from normal to abnormal activity." 

Dr. Charles West says: "There is, in nearly all cases, dis- 
order of the brain before an outburst of convulsions 

Permanent epilepsy may be produced after birth by causes 
acting upon the emotions, by fright, overstudy, or violent fits 
of passion." 

Another writer says; "Fright or great excitement is the 
most common cause." This implies that the cause is in the 
person's environment and that it is not congenital. He also 
speaks of an "Epileptic habit," as though it was something 
acquired after the individual was bom; mentions a case of 
an attack upon a child at six months of age, the second at- 
tack was at two years, the third at four years and a half, the 
fourth at sixteen years, at last endeji in permanent epilepsy, 
and he calls it an epileptic habit. Such deductions seem un- 
warranted, when it is considered that a habit is a conscious 
action which in time becomes fixed. The inference of the 
gentleman's argument is. That one can produce a change in 
the structure of the brain, solely by force of will; alter, as it 
were, his own brain cells, or gray matter. This conclusion 
will admit of argument, and, looking at it logically, we would 
say that it is impossible for an individual to change the brain 
structure, so that the theory of an epileptic habit, is to say the 
least, illogical. Arguments like the above, when given to 
persons who lack the power of analysis, are misleading and 
injurious, in the sense that they hinder a more thorough in- 

The student should be advised to find out, Why did one 
child have an attack of epilepsy at six months, or any other 
age, and another, of the same parentage, was free from any 
like attacks? Why was one child's brain structure too weak 
to withstand a disorder of the digestive, intestinal, or any 
otBier organic difficulty, which affected its brain? 

In view of the fact that epilepsy is such a wide-spread dis- 




order, a careful study of the cause and the necessity for a 
remedy is apparent, and is of the deepest significance to all 
who are concerned in the welfare of mankind. Epilepsy has 
engaged the attention of many investigators, and the result 
of their studies has added but little to the science of medi- 
cine. All agree that epilepsy is a brain disorder, and it has 
been classified into grand mal (severe cases) and petit mal 
(mild cases). 

Dr.Hamiltop says: "Epilepsy has been known by a 

variety of names The ancients called some cases 

'Sacred,' as they could not be cured by any human process, 

but it must be done by a divine power They also 

called some *Comitia,' because the epileptic attacks occurred 
in crowded assemblages, and the term falling sickness is well 
known in this age." 

Dr. Gower says: "Three-quarters of the infantile con- 
vulsions are said to be from teething, and epilepsy dates from 
that time and is caused by defective development and termed 
rickets." If some investigator had inquired. Why was there 
a defective development? A clearer insight into the cause of 
epilepsy might have been the result. But there are no studies 
looking to that end. 

Dr. Gower says further: "There was a theory of warning 
in regard to epilepsy, held by the Greeks, and it was called 
*Aura' (vapor), caused by a vapor which passed up the ex- 
tremities Marriage has no influence on the disease, 

either beneficial or the reverse; there is no cortainty that the 

taint will be transmitted There is a probability that 

a child will escape; there is also a probability against the 
escape of all the children." The two last statements seem to 
be contradictory, and are confusing to one who is looking 
for facts. 

Various surgical operations have been tried upon epi- 
leptics, but they have not succeeded in clearing away the 
cloud which obscures the origin of the various forms of fliis 
dread disorder. 


Dr. Gray refers to Dr. Chaslin, as follows: "In dissecting 
the brains of five epileptics I found the convolutions shriv- 
eled, small, hard, smooth or slightly roughened. A micro- 
scopical examination of the fundamental lesion shows that it 

is due to a number of rough fibrilla And I found 

large, compact bundles of them They resisted the 

action of a forty per cent solution of potassia for ten minutes. 
.... I then washed them in water and concentrated acetic 
acid, and the bundles of fibres remained, after washing, col- 
ored red by the picro-carmine that was used. These rough 
fibrilla, from the epileptic brains, can be preserved after wash- 
ing in water. The connective tissues, when treated in the 
same manner, lose color and plainly show that they are organ- 
ically composed of a different substance." Dr. Gray says: 
"Dr. Chaslin deserves merit for his careful investigation, and 
gives it an importance beyond any former description." 

The reader is requested to bear the statement of Dr. Chas- 
lin in mind, as it will be referred to again, and a logical de- 
duction drawn from his anatomical data. 

There are cases on record of the birth of idiots, — not epi- 
leptics — that were attributed to a shock experienced by the 
mother at the siege of Antwerp, also at the siege of Paris in 
in the Franco-Prussian war. But those cases are compara- 
tively few, when the immense number of imbeciles are con- 
sidered. 'Tis true, there are cases where sudden alarms have 
affected the structure of a prospective child, and the mothers 
should be taught how to overcome the effect of them. 
[See chapters on Mothers Longings, and Advice to Pros- 
pective Mothers.] 

To return to the subject of cause. It is admitted that a 
large majority of epileptics are born so. Comparatively few 
become epileptic after birth, except it be through a con- 
genital weakness of the brain structure. The first investiga- 
tion should be to find out why sound and otherwise healthy 
parents, produce the weak brains in epileptics. When this 
has been done, and the cause discovered, efforts can be put 


forth to educate the coining parents; if this is not done, it is 
fair to assume that congenital epileptics will increase as they 
hare in the past. So far, not even a plausible theory as to 
the causfe has been advanced, in fact, no theory at all by 
scientists in the medical world; all are groping in the dark. 
They are compelled to admit that the true nature of epilepsy 
is unknown. It has baffled the ablest anatomist, the pro- 
foundest philosophers, and the keenest scientista of all ages, 
when they have attempted to find the cause of epilepsy; and 
the medical fraternity are at sea, without mast or rudder, 
while treating cases of pronounced epilepsy. Here and there 
some pretender assumes to be able to cure it. It is possible 
that some mild cases of nervous derangement, which have 
been miscalled epilepsy, may have been relieved, but it could 
not have been true epilepsy. When a cure has been effected, 
the derangement was, no doubt, caused by some malforma- 
tion, the seat of which was not in the brain, but through its 
operation affected a nerve center in the brain, and some 
charlatan has discovered the seat of that particular diBorder, 
relieved it, and then taken credit for the cure of epilepsy. 

IE epilepsy is a brain disorder, caused by imperfect braia 
fibre,.as per Dr. Chaslin, it is incurable. If it is a lack of 
brain substance in some part of the structure^this would 
produce an idiot, according to our definition. It must be 
incurable, as ipio brain substance can be added, by any human 
process, where it is lacking. 

In an idiot there is deficiency of the balance of parts, and 
the equilibrium of the brain structure cannot be effected by 
any human means. All writers upon epilepsy agree that its 
seat is in the brain; that the structure is malformed, and that 
the disease is a nervous one, but cannot be located; that it is 
caused by some action upon the nerves; medical and surgical 
skill has been unable to overcome it. 

Dr. Gray says: "The truth probably is that epileptic 
manifestations are due to a peculiar molecular condition of 


the motor tract/' This corroborates Dr. Chaslin, as io im- 
perfectly formed nerve fibres. 

Dr. Christian, a noted French authority, says: "No one 
doubts that epilepsy is a disease of the brain^ .... And 
if I were asked the cause, would say I do not know." 

Dr* Morbridge, of the asylum for the feeble-minded, at 
Glen wood, Iowa, says: "Epilepsy is not an isolated disease, 
it is ft wide-spread disorder, finding its victims among all 
peoples, and in all walks and conditions of life." He says 
further: "Epilepsy is a strong factor, and one which must 
not be ignored in estimating the cause of idiocy." He also 
calls attention to "Occult or masked epilepsy, that has escaped 
proper recognition and which is responsible for numerous 
crimes, which the person committing is unable to Resist." 

Dr. Maudsley says, in regard to epileptics: "Crime :s an 
outlet in which their unsound tendencies are discharged; they 
would go mad if they were not criminals, and they do not go 
mad because they are criminals." 

In 1891 a commission was appointed by the New Jersey 
legislature, to report the number of epileptics in that state, 
and their conclusions were: "That the most conservative 
estimate allows from two to five cases to each one thousand 
of population, and that this estimate would hold good through- 
out the United States." Taking the lowest estimate, two to 
each thousand, it would give one hundred and forty-four thou- 
sand victims of this dread disorder in this country, and the 
highest estimate would make it over three hundred and sixty 

It is a subject which should command the profoundest 
attention of the^ scientific world, as well as the individual 
interest of every citizen who has the welfare of himself, his 
family and that of the nation at heart. We assert that in- 
vestigators of epilepsy have not looked in the right direction 
for the principal cause of congenital epilepsy. They have 
overlooked or failed to consider an important predisposing 
factor. In their investigation of an epileptic, they have 


looked wholly to the physical and mental condition of the 
individual, from the standpoint of the anatomist. The re- 
searches have been technical, and they have failed to examine 
a factor which is essentially necessary to a proper solution of 
the subject. The technical student has proceeded upon the 
hypothesis, no' doubt unconsciously, that the cause was pro- 
duced after birth, and he has neglected to look into the causes 
which formed the weak brain before its birth. 

The theory which is advanced in this argument was care- 
fally examined; each idea investigated from every conceiva- 
ble standpoint, and phenomena which has confounded the 
technical student became very clear to the writer. The con- 
clusions to which I have arrived may or may not be correct. 
At least, they have the merit of being logical; a theory has 
been formulated, from which investigation can be carried on, 
and it is a basis from which further studies can be made. 

'*The importance of an incomplete theory lies in its sug- 
gestiveness, by which it leads to the true theory." And we 
have at all times kept in mind Huxley's "Guiding Rule," 
which is here reiterated, "Give assent to no propositions, 
except those, the truth of which is so clear that they cannot be 
doubted." All sincere seekers after truth, will accept any 
light which can be thrown upon the dread subject of 

The cause^of epilepsy is admitted to be brain disorder, 
and naturally the first thing to do, is to find out the cause of 
the imperfect, or weakened brain formation. Nature has 
been obstructed in some way, and there will be found the key 
to its solution. The conclusion — that the predisposing cause^ 
the effect of which is true epilepsy, where 'the parents are 
physically and mentally sound, and the mother has experi- 
enced no fright or injury — is, that the mother has attempted 
an unsuccessful abortion by the use of more or less powerful 
drugs; and that in proportion to the strength and frequency 
of the dose taken for that purpose, is the child's mental and 
physical system shattered. It has produced Jbhe epileptic 




state, or has predisposed that weakened brain structure to 
epileptic conditions, similar to a consumptive, who is not 
bom with the disease, simply weak lungs which predisposes 
them td the attack of consumption germs. The cause of 
epilepsy then, is weak brain fibres. 

There are two factors which should be considered, as 
bearing upon and favoring the theory — that the cause of a 
weak brain structure in an epileptic is an attempted abortion 
by the use of chemicals or drugs. 

First — The mother's earnest desire to rid herself of her 
burden, secretly. Such a mental operation would of itself 
produce brain malformation — we do not say an epileptic brain 
structure. Right here a passing thought: It may be that 
such an earnest desire on the part of the prospective mother, 
is th^ cause of the many murderous and suicidal brains so 
common in this age. All my investigations lead to that con- 
clusion, and 

Secondly, — The drug which is intended to destroy the 
physical organism of the prospective child, necessarily weak- 
ens the entire system of the forming babe, and produces or 
predisposes to epilepsy whenever the conditions are favor- 
able, and the individual is more or less an epileptic in 
proportion to the strength and frequency of the dose; when 
it does not kill, it weakens the entire system relatively. 

This proposition seems indisputable when it is considered 
that the entire medical world teaches that slight changes in 
the food of the mother, or her indisposition will affect the 
babe's system through the mother's milk; that overheating, 
or outbursts of anger on the part of the -mother may produce 
spasms in her child. There are many such cases on record, 
and the following is given to illustrate that maternal impres- 
sions can and do produce spasms in a child after birth, 
although they were not of an epileptic nature. 

Mrs. Dr. S., of F., before the of birth her first child, was 
requested by an intimate friend to be present at her confine- 
ment. Dr. S. talked the matter over with his wife, and 


deckled that it would not be likely to do any bartn, as she 
was forewarned. Mrs. S. remained at the bedside of her 
friend nntil the child was bom. Three men the latet Mrs* S. 
gave birth to a boy, who, in his sleep, acted like a woman in 
child-birth, — after he was six months of age it was never 
noticed; he had The writer saw the child a 
number of times, was intimately acquainted with the family. 
This case is given, not to add any weight or evidence upon 
epilepsy, but solely to illustrate what might occur again, and 
aa a warning to mothers. 

In corroboration of the conclusions as to epilep^: Mrs. 0. 
of S. has a daughter twelve years of age, who is an imbecile 
epileptic. The mother admits that she took drugs to relieve 
'herself. She warned a newly married woman never to use 
drugs. "That" said she, pointing to her child, *'is the result 
of drugs." 

It is conceded by the best medical authority, that a child 
may be affected after a virtual separation from the body of 
the mother through nursing. How much more damaging 
must be the effect upon the brain structure of the forming 
child from the use of drugs by the mother before its birth; 
that is, while there is such an intimate corelation existing 
between the mother and her prospective offspring, a double 
identity, as it were, which is in closer relation at such a time 
then it ever can be after birth. 

Referring again to the anatomical researches of Dr. Chaslin, 
that "Masses of compact fibrilla, or small fibres, were found 
in the gray matter of epileptics, which wore not affected by 
the action of potassia or acetic acid," goes to show, that some 
chemical action has changed its composition — something 
unnatural, and it is fair to assume that drugs were the cause. 
To get the facts the mother should be interviewed upon the 

We are aware that this is a difficult problem to solve, and 
in taking this position we are treading upon very thin ice. 
But with full assurance that all the facta point toward the 

. i_ 


prBinise taken; all other roads lead into blank space where na 
logical theory can be formulated. 

In an investigation on the line of this proposition, it is 
difficult to procure satisfactory evidence, for various reasons. 
One is, the element of time has interposed between the birth 
of a child, who proves to be an epileptic, and the knowledge 
that it is epileptic. Years have passed and the mother may 
have forgotten what she did, or what she had intended to do 
on that line. She may have forgotten, or will not tell, that 
she attempted to produce an abortion by the use of drugs. 

Auother difficulty will appear in the case of the birth of a 
poor, weakly infant, that does not seem to have vitality 
enough to draw its breath, when its parents are robust and of 
good constitution. In an attempt to interview the mother, 
and the accusation being made that she had used drugs, she 
will strenuously deny it, unless the physician in charge 
positively knows that she has takeii medicines for that 
purpose. Then, and only theu, can he arrive at a conclusion, 
which will be made doubly sure if the child proves to be an 

In case the parents are prominent people and desirable 
patients, the physician's lips are sealed; he would not dare 
offend the parents by making the charge and investigation. 
The average mother will protest and deny tlie fact that she 
has attempted to prevent the maturing of her offspring, In 
many cases she is ignorant of the effect of the drugs she has 
taken; has been told, perhaps, that it will do no harm, if it 
does no good; possibly after one dose she feels that she is 
doing wrong, and refuses to take another. The first dose has 
retarded the development, and her offspring, as well as the 
community, suffers with a mild case of epilepsy. That the 
effect of drugs upon the plastic brain and body of the form- 
ing child must be damaging, can hardly be denied. 

If the medical world will look for the cause of epilepsy 
from the standpoint which I have taken, the predisposing 
cauEe may be definitely ascertained, and a careful research 


will place epilepsy among the preventable diseases, as are 
many of the malformations of humanity that are now known 
to be due to prenatal impressions. It is stated upon good 
authority that there are more cases of miscarriages, than of 
thoHO who are matured at birth. Statistics of the Board of 
Health, 1887, prove that in a period of sixty-five years, in the 
City of New York, the death of imperfectly formed babies, 
or miscarriages, increased from one in sixteen hundred and 
thirty-two births to one in eight. 

* If the statistics are correct, and we have no reason to 
doubt their accuracy as they are from Board of Health 
roports, it out Herods-Herod! He did no greater crime when 
he slow all the male children in Egypt than is committed in 
onr modem time. Who can comprehend this inhuman and 
God defying crime; this slaughter of innocent unborn 
infants, it is barbarous! merciless! and cowardly! It is the 
most damaging and wide-spread of any and all infamies, and 
is enough to sicken one who contemplates this horrible vice 
which is practiced not alone among the abandoned, but by 
intelligent and would-be respectable people. 

Another idea that may repay investigation: Are any 
epileptics to be found among the first born in a family? 
There may be an idiot, but not an epileptic. In my experi- 
eiice, never; I have never found one; they are always of later 
birth. The first babe is usually desired, not always, but in a 
case where no drugs are used, the child is cross and disa- 
greeable. See case of Mrs. R. I have interviewed a number 
of mothers and each one said, "Yes, you are correct, the use 
of drugs will produce epileptic offspring." It may be the 
second or third or a still later one, but in no case is it the 
iirst-born. This fact alone points to the correctness of my 

There is an old truth, which is: "That wherever there is a 
huge physical evil, there, as the parent or origin of it, has 
moral evil been to a proportionate extent. 

'ThPQugrh all time sin was, is, will be, the parent of misery.'*— T/iowkw Caritfi-e. 




*To cure is the voice of the past, to prevent. Is the divine whisper of to-da^." 

How can the production of epileptics be prevented? 
Those in existence can not be cured; but the birth of others 
can be curtailed by educating the mothers as to what the re- 
sult of the use of drugs will be likely to produce upon her 
child. It will be more eflFective than teaching her that it is 
murder; raany mothers care nothing for that; they are told it 
is not wrong up to a certain time; and it does not prevent 
the injury* 

It 13 horrible to contemplate the facts that there were 95,000 
imbeciles under school age in the United States in 1890, (see 
census), and a large majority would have been a blessing to 
themselves and to the world, if nature had not been Interfered 
with in some manner. 

I have framed a theory on what I believe to be facts, find 
any one of fair ability can verify them in the ayora^c com- 
munity, if care is used in collecting precise data, but care 
must be taken to get all the factors which may have a bearing 
upon the subject. We are ready to accept any otlier theory 
that will stand the test of logical analysis. If our tlieory and 
the facts do not agree, our theory must go to the wall. 




The question is repeatedly asked, can a prospective mother 
control or produce sex at will? That is, can she learn how- 
to produce a boy or girl as she pleases. There is only oiis 
answer to such a question in the present state of the knowl- 
edge in r^ard to the process, and that is. No I 


It has been a subject for much speculative thought. Up to 
the beginning of the 17th century there were 5fX) different 
theories advanced, as to what determines ses, and the number 
has been steadily increasing. Their enumeration is too 
laborious, nor would it be desirable, as it would weary and be 
liable to confuse the reader. AH theories upon the subject 
of sex determination are so far, and no doubt always will be^ 
in the nature of speculative thought; and the study of nature 
in its relation to metaphysics, is too vague and cliimericfilj it is 
left for others, who delight to revel in mysticism. 

In this work there is but little indulgence in the line of 
speculation, and where it has been used, it is solely to illus- 
trate some process of nature that could not be verified. 

The discussion of the question of sex-control or sex-pro- 
dnction, is taken up for the purpose of warning prospective 
mothers of a danger that may result from a mental interfer- 
ence; that is by hoping and wishing for something contrary 
to the intent of nature. The entire subject is problematical 
yet logical. * • 


In discussing this question it would be in order to 
TeTiew some ideas upon the cause of a preponderance of 
sex in ceitain organisms, which can be found inDnimmond'a 
"Ascent of Man," that he has taken from the work of Dr. 
Yung, a German scientist. It is very interesting to one who 
has never read them. Dr. Yung experimented with tadpoles. 
He found that in a normal condition, in every brood of one 
hundred young ones, there were forty-three males and fifty- 
seven females. He then fed a brood very nourishing food, 
and they produced seventy-one females to twenty-nine males, 
still another brood to whom more stimulating food was given, 
the product was eighty-two females and eighteen males; one 
more lot was fed the most nutritious food, and as much as 
they could consume, the result was ninety-two females and 
only eight males. Dr. Yung then experimented with 
"Aphides," the common plant louse in gardens. He found, 
that in the summer when food was plenty, not a single male 
plant louse could be found. As soon as cold weather set in, 
and the leaves began to wither, males became numerous. He 
then studied the subject in a hot house, and for three ye^rs 
not a single male aphide was found; then the temperature 
y^s lowered and very soon males were produced, Bnt no 
conclusions were drawn from these experiments, at least there 
are none in Prof. Drummond's work, and we might conclude 
that a large amount of nutritious food would result in an 
abundance of females, while a lesser amount, or what mi^ht 
be termed starvation, produces a surplus of males. But a 
more rational theory is, that when food is plenty, eight males 
are enough to fecundate the ninety-two females; when, there- 
fore, starvation sets in and there is danger of the comxjlete 
extinction of the male element, nature protects itself against 
such a calamity, and restores, as it were, the equilibrium. 

But the thought intrudes itself, What good does all such 
speculation do toward elevating and ennobling the human race? 
It is largely theorizing without any appreciable beneficial 
result. Facts to be of benefit to mankind should be so ar- 


ranged and applied that the average mind can grasp the lesson 
and the application of the truths of nature to the elevation 
of the race and they are, the crowning object of all scientific 
research; if not, they are worthless. 

This leads up to the consideration of a subject that we 
desire to impress upon the mothers, which is, 


The subject to which we desire to call the readej^'s attention, 
and especially prospective mothers, is the danger which may 
( we do not say will) result from an attempt to control or deter- 
mine the sex of their offspring. As has been remarked the 
argument is purely problematical. In this entire work, there 
is held before the reader's view, a central truth; it should 
become to the strident, as it were, a seed thought, and it is a 
fact which cannot be successfully controverted, which is, 
That the mother has the power to and does control the phys- 
icfil form, as well as the mental character of her child, within 
the limitation of nature, as has been remarked in a preceding 

If this is conceded, then we shall proceed upon the 
Iiyjiothesis, which must be strictly and philosophically true, 
tlmt nature alone determines sex. How? that is another 
speculative phase of the subject which we decline to discuss. 

Nature having determined that a given human germ shall 
result in a boy, the prospective mother at the end of thirty or 
sixty days, earnestly hopes and wishes that 'the product may 
be a girl. It may be by the operation of her mind, through her 
longings, that such mental interference arrests the progress 
of one set of generative organs — in this case male —and 
forces, as it were, a different set of generative organs — female 
— to a partially successful issue. That is to say, she is liable 
to change the organs which nature is preparing, just as she 
cfui change the natural formation of the foot, producing a 
club foot; cut oft* a hand; add a finger, or produce some other 
deformity, and by such interference, bring into being a dual 


sex, or to be more exact, a sexless individual — one who is 
neither male nor female — one that is commonly known as an 

The subject cannot be demonstrated, but it would be well 
for prospective mothers to weigh the subject thoroughly 
before they attempt to influence nature. It is always 
dangerous to interfere with a natural process. The last 
sentence cannot be too strongly emphasized. 

Do not jump to the conclusion that there is no danger, 
nothing to be feared, because one, two, or a dozen mothers 
have said, "I tried that, I hoped and wished, but it did no 
good, or it didr no harm." It is possible that the mother 
who did not succeed in getting a girl, after she had longed for 
one, where nature had determined a boy, did not produce 
a deformity; she may in such a case bring forth an eflfeminat© 
character, one whose nature is largely girlish instead of a 
vigorous man-nature. There are many girlish boys, as well 
as tom-boy girls and the cause may be just such mental 
interference with nature's intent. 

To illustrate: We have in mind a family of four sons, no 
daughters. All are married, and have children except the 
second one. The mother desired a daughter, in that case, 
and thereby may have injured his reproductive powers, as he 
has been married ten years, with no issue. We say it is pos- 
sible, nay probable, that the cause of barrenness is duo to 
such longings on the part of the mother. 

The subject is open to discussion, and may result in more 
data upon which to base conclusions. In the meanwhile it 
can do no harm to urge mothers not to interfere on this line 
with the course of nature. That is to say, let nature take its 
course in the matter of sex determination, and do not dwell 
upon the subject; dismiss your hopes and desires as to whether 
your child shall be a boy or a girl. I am fully convinced 
that if this advice is followed no possible harm can arise 
either to the mother or her child. 





"Criminality, like Insanity, waits upon civilization; amotis- tHe prtmltlvn 
Insanity is rare. True criminality is also rare.* '^EUis in The CriTMnal. 

"If the skin of a olvUized man Is scratched, often an untamed «ava^ wlU be 
found beneath." 

Crime is a sign of some force at 
work somewhere, wbicli is as yet 
unknown to scientists. It follows 
civilization and accompanies the 
victory of which we are so proud. 
The intelligent reader of this 
book has no doubt ere this become 
convinced that the principal cause 
of the imperfections in mankind is Maternal ImpressionSt 
largely due to the imperfect education of the coming mothers. 
Til (3 signs of the imperfect education of the mothers, by 
which the effect of the present defective system of education 
is noted, should be carefully studied. 

The scientist has diagnosed the criminal physically, also 
his misdemeanors; the contour of his skull and features; th& 
ears, eyes, hair; and of late, the shape of his hand with 
thumb impression, has been compared with normal man. 
They have suggested means for his reformation, without 
knowing where the fault lay, except to call it a lack of educa- 
tion; and some are now insisting that the criminal is a moral 
imbecile, and cannot be educated; he is incapable of reform- 


ation. But they have never tried to discover why be was 
born a criminal when his progenitors were honorable and up- 
right. 80 far no perceptible good results have been accomp- 
lished, which ia evidence that the investigation and attempted 
reformation has not been carried in the right direction. A 
proper conception of the cause of the birth of those who are 
morally defective will lead to a correct understanding, and 
thus clear the way for the application of the proper remedy. 

The fatalist says, "Crime has always existed and always 
wilL" Such an assertion has no foundation in fact, and it 
cannot be the cause of the enormous increase of crime. The 
United States statistician upon criminality, Mr, Round, calls 
attention to the fact that the increase in crime is out of all 
proportion to the increase in population. In 1850 the ratio 
of prisoners to each 1,000,000 of population was 290; in 1860 
it was 607; in 1870, 853; and in 1880 it was 1,169; 1890, 

Maternal impressions will be found a prime factor in the 
cans© of an individuars criminal actions, and its study will 
lead the student to a logical explanation of the phenomena. 
All investigation, as to the great increase of crime, has rested 
solely upon tlieories that have no foundation. — i. e. that crim- 
inality is wholly due to improper environment, and the 
faulty education of the individual. 

The question, Why are there so many criminals who are 
seemingly unable to refrain from criminal acts, is a subject 
which has received no attention. The question, Why? is an 
important one. 

It has been demonstrated that comparatively few of those 
who are criminals can help themselves. "They are born 
irresponsible," and the jurisprudence of the land will, in time, 
recognize the innate tendencies of the criminal, and deal with 
him accordingly. They are irresponsible in the sense that 
they are bom with a desire to commit criminal acts, and 
cannot resist the temptation. 

A certain prominent man said of himself, ** When my good 



impulses are predominant, I would suflPer my right arm to be 
cut oflp before I would go into dissipation. At such times 
I shudder at the thought of the terrible things I have been 
guilty of. Some days my evil genius comes upon me un- 
awares, and my desire is to enter into the wildest dissipation. 
At such times no power can restrain me; while the spirit is 
upon me I am a fiend, and it is with great effort that I 
restrain myself from committing murder." 

What is the cause of such recurring mania? It is of the 
sflme class as the periodical attacks of a desire to drink, and 
is the result of an abnormal brain action, or unbalanced brain 
structure with which the mother has, through ignorance, 
endowed the individual, thus creating a desire which that 
person is unable to resist. The same argument holds good in 
the case of a congenital murderer or thief. 

Dr. Jacobi says: "The cause of abnormal brain action is 
because of abnormal brain formation." All authorities of 
prominence now recognize that criminals are the legitimate 
result of an interference with natural law, and the mother 
through ignorance of the effect of her mentality at a partic- 
ular period, has predisposed her offspring to a life of crime. 

One reason why the cause of criminality has not been 
solved ere this, is, that most investigators of the subject have 
been looking in the wrong direction. They have been laying 
the blame to the education of the individual and his environ- 
ment, when the fact is, criminals are bom with criminal 
tendencies, and the fault lies in the non-education of the 
mothers upon the line of reproduction, or more properly, 
maternal impressions. The conclusion is inevitable — that as 
the mother shapes the physical structure of her child, she 
gives it form and quality, and it must be conceded that she 
sliapes the brain structure for good or evil. The mother is 
unconscious of her ability to control the shape or structure 
of the brain of her offspring, when it is the very thing about 
which she should be instructed. 

No thorough investigation of the phenomena of crimin- 



ality and its cause has been undertaken. Remedial measures 
have been adopted, but so far, no adequate remedy has been 
suggested by any of the host of writers or students of 

The shape of the skull, the size and form of the ears, the 
heavy jaws and all other physical marks, merely emphasize 
the fact of criminality, they do not give any clue to the cause. 
The labor of all investigators, as well as many prison con- 
gresses, conventions of charities and corrections, with the 
efforts of various governments, is put forth to learn the cause 
of the vast amount of crime. Theory after theory has been 
advanced, but none have touched the root of the evil — that 
is, they have not succeeded in curtailing crime to any appre- 
ciable extent. One thing has been settled by criminologists, 
so far as it is possible to settle it, which is, that no amount of 
education will overcome the criminal tendencies of persons 
who are born with a desire to commit criminal acts. They 
are incorrigible. 

The penologist arranges the criminals into two large 
classes; '* Accidental criminals, and congenital criminals." 
It is said of the latter class, that no discipline can tame them, 
nor can they be instructed upon the line of morality. They 
cannot resist the temptation to do wrong. Thomas Carlyle 
called them The Devil's Regiment of the Line, and bade them 
begone 1 swiftly. Society does bid them begone. It hangs 
or sequesters them, and when we are told this, it is merely a 
description of a phenomena rather than an explanation of 
the cause of crime. Nor is there any other remedy for them; 
they are bom criminals. Society as at present organized, can 
do nothing else. But it can enlist in the work of a proper 
education of the masses, so that when the present crop of 
criminals is exhausted, the mothers will have produced a 
better class of citizens, or at least the birth of criminals can 
be greatly restricted if not entirely eliminated. 

In a study of the cause of criminality, it is desirable that 
a careful diagnosis shall be made. First, as to which class 


the individual belongs — an accidental or a congenital crim- 
inal. The lines which separate the criminal clasees, are often 
faint and hardly perceptible. It will take close and pains- 
taking research to be able to arrive at correct conclusions. 
Prof. Galton says, '^Natural groups have nuclei but not out^ 
line." Prof. Lombroso holds that "a bom criiuinal is an 
epileptic." That depends largely upon the definition of 
epilepsy. As has been remarked, an epileptic has a weak^ 
ened brain structure, that is, the brain fibres are abnormal, 
and an idiot has an unbalanced brain. A oriminal, like the 
idiot, has a brain structure which is not well balanced- the 
structure is crooked or malformed, but not physically weak, 
as are the epileptics. [See chapter on Epilepsy.] Prof. 
Bain says, "The association of brain malformation with 
derangement of mind, is well established, and does not admit 
of argum.ent." In the post mortem examination of the brains 
of thirty inmates of insane asylums, every case was found to 
be a marked departure, in one form or another, from a normal 
brain structure. 

In the light of all other facts which may be collected in the 
investigation of any criminal, the mental characteristics of 
the individual must be studied, if we hope for light upon the 
cause of his criminality, particularly if his antecedents are 
good. For the time being forget that he is a criminal, study 
him and his mentality as you would the nature of an animal ; 
study his peculiarities in criminal acts, under a new order of 
facts which are entirely independent of the prescribed rules 
under which biology is studied. The cause of the criminal 
action should be investigated; not the shape of his skull; the 
prominence of his ears; the curl of his lips; or the length and 
breadth of his thumbs. These are all well enough to prove 
that the man is a criminal. What should be studied, is, 
Why was he bom so, and what impels him to commit criminal 
acts? To this end the mind must be investigated, his desires 
and the causes which induce him to commit crime. Were 
they inherent or were they caused by environment. If the 


eubjoct snys, "I have such strong desires that at times I am 
not able to resist or control them," it would not be wise to 
say, *Tou are foolish; you can resist them if you will try/' If 
the investigator were an oculist and a patient should say, 
"Doctor, I often see specks floating before my eyes," would a 
wise physician say, "Oh, nonsense! You are all right; your 
eyes are sound; it is only a whim; you are notional." A 
careful physician would make a study of the case, and pre- 
scribe accordingly. 

In a criminal case, note well the evidence as to the sub- 
ject's feelings and desires. Do they aflpect him only at certain 
times, like the periodical drinker, or is it continual. If 
periodical, it will be found, by interviewing the mother, that 
she longed to do at some time preceding his birth, just what 
the subject cannot resist doing periodically. 

It is well known in many cases, of men who at times have 
an uncontrollable desire to become intoxicated, that it lasts 
a short time, and then not a drop will they touch until the 
desire seizes them again. Study such cases. 

Illustration: W. B. of N. Y. is manager of a large 
business. His parents are strong temperance people; two of 
his brothers were ministers. He would get on a spree every 
six or seven months, — no exact record was kept — would 
drink nothing but beer, keep it up a week at a time, then 
break off and not touch a drop until the desire seized him 
again. His mother said that before his birth she longed to 
taste of beer, but refused to gratify the longing because she 
was opposed to everything of the kind. Another case is 
given to illustrate the effect of a mother's thought and 

W* A. of I., is a brutal, ugly fellow, a thief and murderer, 
that is, he attempted murder by cutting a man's throat. Has 
two older brothers and one younger who are good citizens, 
and are respected. The mother said to a friend: After she 
discovered that she was to become a mother again, having two 
children already, did not want any more, and felt like murder- 


ing it if she only could. Also had an uncontmllabl© desire 
to steal, would go into her husband's store and watch a 
chance to g§t into the money drawer. Was ignorant of what 
the effect of her mental condition would be upon her child, 
but is fully cognizant of it now, and a firm believer in th© 
theory of maternal impressions. 

In a scientific study of criminality and its relation to 
society, it will be necessary to study the criminal as an 
individual, in connection with the conditions Burronnding 
him. That is, the causes which may have excited his desires, 
thus leading him to commit the crime. If the felony was a 
financial act, Did he steal to gratify a natural want? Waa 
it a desire to satisfy hunger or shelter? In such a casSj you 
will no doubt find what is termed on occasional criminal. 
Was it to get money with which to drink or gamble? In the 
latter case it may be an instinctive desire to gamble. Then. 
the inciting cause is a gambling mania. Remember that you 
are after the fundamental cause, Why has he a crooked brain? 

All facts should be carefully investigated for the conclu- 
Bions to be of any value. Trace the underlying cause and its 
connection with poverty. If it be a crime on the person of 
the weaker sex, find out if the mother was sensual in her 
nature. If she was not, then she may have had sensual long- 
ings previous to his birth; this will be diflScult to get at^ but 
without it your premise will lack an important factor. When 
drtiwing the conclusion, weigh all the factors; his mentality^ 
his life history, which will embrace his environment, not 
aloiie his home surroundings, but his schooling, and his 
moral culture; also his physical condition; was he sick and 

It has been held that heredity is the prime cause of the 
birth of criminals; but the facts do not warrant the conclu^ 
sion. In the "Jukes family," the writer of that work does 
not agree with the theory of heredity. Criminals do not 
always produce criminals. This is shown by the record of 
the superintendent of the House of Kefuge, on Randall 




I , 

Island, N. Y., which says, "Among the young oflPenders in my 
charge, not one per cent, were bom of criminal parents." 
Ninety-nine out of every hundred were the product of what 
are called honest citizens. This proves that some other factor 
more powerful than heredity has been, and is at work. 

Dr. Carrie, of France, says: "The true criminal is lazy, 
without remorse, and extremely vain; although cunning, is in- 
ferior in intelligence. They are egotists." He also says, 
"Brain infirmity has its origin in an arrest of development." 
This would lead to the conclusion that the development of the 
brain structure w^as retarded while it was forming. Dr. Gar- 
afalo, of Italy, says: "All criminals are born; their moral 
development is arrested; the influence of instruction is 
almost null." It is presumed that he refers to instinctive 
criminals. As has been remarked, six out of seven male 
criminals who have been convicted and punished, relapse into 

At a prison congress held a few years ago, the statement 
was made, that "Out of 1383 prisoners in Sing Sing, N. Y., 
only 120 were uneducated. And of the adult male convicts 
in the Massachusetts prison, only 464 out of 3976 were 

So that the consensus of opinion, by those who have 
given the question close study, is that education does not 
eliminate crime. "It was thought at one time that education 
would prevent crime; but we now know that mere intellectual 
education has very little influence in preventing crime. — 
"The Criminals, by Ellis." 

The games of prisoners proves their cruelty. In the Ital- 
ian reformatories, where they are not kept in solitary confine- 
ment. Dr. Carara, an Italian expert, says, "Prisoners* games 
are often accompanied by bloodshed, and it is almost impos- 
sible to prevent cruelty." Innocent games of children 
become tinctured with cruelty. They skip the rope, and part 
of the game is to trip the jumper, so that he will fall heavily 
upon the stone pavement. In blind-man's-buff, the blinded 


one has n handkerchief, in one comer a sharp stone is tied, 
with which he strikes his pursuers if he can. 

The characteristic feature of all prison games is the love 
of combiit, and the participatits carry the scars, which are 
considered honorable. The insensibility to pain, that is ex- 
hibited in the sports of criminals, proves they are less acute 
in their physical senses, and less sensitive to the pains of 
others. What seems to others as unusually cruel, is only the 
natural thing with men of criminal tendencies. These games 
are allowed by the foreign prison authorities upon the ground 
o! being the means of working off the superfluity of their 
physical activity. 

The conclusion to be drawn from the nature of the prison 
games, is that the criminal has brutish nature, and it is shown 
in the cruelty displayed in their games. They are not only 
brutal, but dangerous, and belong to a class of games which 
are common among savages, whose sports are barbaric in 
their nature, such as running the gauntlet, with the hero's 
indifference to torture, which is always applauded. 

We do not charge that college students in their games of 
foot-ball show the criminal nature, but they are of the savage 
nature, and if there was no danger attending it there would 
be no foot-ball games; the element of brute force is the 
prim© incentive, and shows the brute nature in mankind. 
We state a noteworthy fact, that a majority of the most in- 
tellectual students, we mean the deepest thinkers and the 
most logical minds, are not lovers of such rude and boisterous 
games. There is no doubt an exception here and there, but 
it is the exception, and proves the rule. The instinct of 
ferocity and love of torture, seems to be retained by some 
who are gifted with the highest advantages. 

Kote the increase in the number of outrages of public 
decency in college life. It fills the public mind with fear as 
to the future of so-called educated men. It is difficult to 
account for it, except upon the ground that mankind is inclin- 
ing to the barbaric type. The remedy is a better class of 


brain formation. Brains which are inclined to be gentle-men, 
and not brutal-men. Nothing comes out of a man but what 
Ib in him. Why are some members of a family so cruel and 
others gentle and kind, is a problem for sociologists. When 
that problem is solved, a remedy may be applied. 

There is only one positively sure method to insure the 
future generation against the acts of criminals. That is, the 
public must cease to breed criminals, and the wit of the 
ablest has been taxed, by the inquiry, how shall it be done? 
We answer, by educating the coming mothers upon the line 
of reproduction, or maternal impressions. The two classes of 
criminals which have been mentioned, are subdivided by 
the penologist into: 

First — The Accidental Criminal. 

Second — The Habitual Criminal.^ 

Third — The Criminal from Passion. 

Fourth — The Professional Criminal. 

Fif til — The Occasional Criminal. 

Sixth — The Instinctive Criminal. 

The accidental criminals are numerous. Among them are 
many of naturally good instincts; they have been led into 
vice and crime, because they are so constituted that they lack 
the decision of character to enable them to say no, when 
tempted. They are deficient in the ability to discern the nice 
distinctions between right and wrong, and to know where 
the path diverges. In youth, through environment, they are 
misled by passing fancies, which are disastrous; notions that 
at times verge upon criminality in their results. Humanity 
is liable to indulge in immoral fancies, when there is a lack 
of moral will power, and each repetition of the act, strength- 
ens the desire, and the actions merge into crime. 

The habitual criminal is a criminal from hiabit; is gener- 
ally of a weak moral character, unable to resist his inclina- 
tions and associations, which, with the element of time, and 
continued environment, with a repetition of criminal acts, the 
force of habit predominates; his will is not strong enough to 



overcome tho environment, his habits of life and aseociatos 
lead him to commit criminal acts. This class is closely allied 
to the first— the accidental criftiinal. 

The third— The criminal from passion — is iiBually a man 
of good instincts, who for some real or fancied wrong to him* 
self or his friends, takes upon himself the right to administer 
justice. Such persons never repeat the act. It is a lesson 
they never forget, and they are therefore not dangerous to' 
society. An investigation of such a case will not throw any 
light upon the question of criminality. 

The fourth — The professional criminal — is usually in- 
teiligentj guided by rational motives, takes his chances volun- 
tarily, lays his plans, and if liable to detection postpones his 
action. To this class belong the successful forgers, and 
embezzlers, bank burglars, and the smooth-tongued swindler, 
who imposes his fraudulent paper upon the bank, the keen- 
witted counterfeiter who so often evades the clutches of the 
officers of the law, and the sleek swindler who gets a farmer 
to sign a receipt or contract which turns up at the bank as a 

When the average man is in the presence of one of these 
high-grade professional criminals, he instinctively feels that 
he is in close communion with a mental peer. Investigating 
such a character will only be a waste of time for the student 
of causation. 

The fifth class — The occasional criminal — is one who only 
commits crime when a good opportunity offers; not because 
of any innate desire, nor from cruel motive; he is actuated 
by some passion, and thinks the crime will never be discov- 
ered, or by a desire for gain. It is usually a financial crime 
which he commits, which will enable him to gratify some 
selfish desire ; something beyond his means. To this class 
belong the petty thieves, known as sneak thieves, and clerks, 
who tap their employer's till. 

The sixth and last — the instinctive criminal— -opens a wide 
field for the student of criminology, and if the cases under 



investigation are carefully studied by taking all factors into 
consideration which have a bearing upon the subject, a great 
deal of light will be thrown upon the question of the cause of 
criminality. The instinctive criminal has impulsoa so strong, 
and his morality is so weak, that he will commit the crime be- 
cause of an uncontrollable desire, and the knowledge that he 
will be found out does not restrain him; he cannot resist liia 
desires. His passionate desire comes from within, ever gnaw- 
ing at his moral edifice, until it crumbles, and his nature as* 
serts itself. He is lacking in morally heahiiy brain structure ; 
his will is anything but free. He is entirely governed by or- 
ganic conditions; never has any remorse for his acts, and is a 
moral idiot. To him the criminal act is not a sin, any more 
than any other natural desire. The element of what society 
calls wrong-doing, seems to be the basic principle of his com- 
position. In the presence of the instinctive criminal, one 
feels that he is looking at a moral monstrosity, as he would if 
he were looking at a hideous physical deformity, and a careful 
study of such cases will amply repay the student of causation. 

If possible, see the mother and inquire into her mental 
condition during the year of the birth of the subject. Ke- 
member that the element of time has interfered, and she may 
have forgotten, even if willing to inform the student; also the 
mother's bias in which she is liable to overlook his bad traits. 
and enlarge upon his good qualities; take? her statement with 
many grains of allowance. 

An insane criminal need not be investigated, unless it is 
clearly shown to be congenital; in that case the mother is the 
only one that can be used as evidence, as no reliable data 
could be had from the subj'ect. The ineanity may have been 
caused by sickness, accidental injury, fright, or he may bo an 
epileptic; in either case it will be of no value in the study. 

A significant fact, in connection with criminals, is, that 
in all prisons, imbecile and lunatic asylums, there is a 
peculiar odor, exhaled by the inmates and which is never 
found among well-balanced human beings. It is known 



, as the i)rison odor, and has no resemblance to any other 
human exhalation. Upon entering an asylum and going 
into the wards, it will not be at once perceived by the sense 
of smell, as are other fetid odors, but imperceptibly there is 
a peculiar taste which creates a desire to expectorate, and a 
feeling as though something needed to bo scraped from one's 
tongue. It can not be eradicated by any known system of 

. disinfection, nor do open windows and fresh air remove it. 
The officials at asylums say, that it is the exhalation from the 
bodies of imperfectly formed human beings, that is^ mentally 
iinbalauced persons. This does not refer to physical deform- 
ities. It is always present in the case of an imperfectly 
developed mentality, to a greater or lesser degree. 

Criminologists say that the congenital critiiitial tends to 
the sugar loaf form of head, which is caused by a defectiv© 
organization. Undoubtedly by this is meant that there is 
more brain substance in the top of the head, which would 
give the sugar loaf form. It can also be observed in the case 
of many insane persons. If this conclusion of criminologists 
is correct, it adds evidence in favor of the theory of maternal 
impressions, as a factor of prime importance, and lends ad- 
ditional weight to the theory that the mother is the cause of 
her child's criminality, as she shapes the brain structure in 
an abnormal manner, and it cannot be attributed to heredity 
or atavism. 

Some writers mention the pallor of the skin as an eri- 
dence of criminality; one says that he found it in 14 per cent, 
of criminals and only 3 per cent, of normal x>ersons. Others 
attribute it to confinement^ but this has not been satisfac- 
torily demonstrated, as well known "trusties" — prisoners who 
are allowed liberties, and such as do the work of servants, 
and not closely confined— are also known to have the pallor of 
skin mentioned. The first theory is that the pallor of the 
skin is due "to cerebral congestion." This concluBiou should 
not bo accepted without closer investigation. To demon- 
strate the phenomena of skin pallor, criminals that hav& 


never used intoxicants should be examined as a distinct class, 
and if similar results are obtained the conclusion might be 

The writer suggests another line of investigation for 
pallor of skin, which would be well to study. Investigate 
the pallid criminals upon the theory that through the inordi- 
nate use of intoxicants the extremities are liable to bloat; 
the bloating destroys the minute blood vessels on the surface 
of the skin, and after the subject is confined, he is unable to 
get his usual supply of liquor, the bloat disappears, that is, 
the alcohol is eliminated, and the blood does not return to its 
original channels. The small blood vessels having lost their 
activity, thus making the pallor. 

Tlie writer knew a young man aged thirty, who had been 
a hard drinker; when last seen he had not drank a drop for 
sis years, was perfectly healthy, but had that deathly pallor 
of skin which the writer has noticed in prisoners. This 
theory needs demonstration before definite conclusions are 
drawn. "A pleasing, well-formed face is never found among 
instinctive criminals." There is always a lack of "some- 
thing" to round it out or to complete a harmonious ap- 

Dr. Murro, of Italy, investigated the habits and ancestry 
of five hundred criminals at the prison of Turin, also one 
hundred normal persons, and says that he "Found disastrous 
degeneration among the children of parents who were past 
the middle age." But he adds that his conclusions are not 
poBitivej and the research was not wholly satisfactory. 

A careful research shows that Dr. Murro overlooked an 
important factor. He should have inquired into the finan- 
cial condition of those elderly mothers, and what effect it 
may have had upon their minds, at a period of a few months 
preceding the birth of the child. Were they abundantly 
able to provide for their wants, or were they poor and needy, 
and with a desire to steal for the purpose of providing for 
the expected offspring. This would have an important bear- 


ing in the light of maternal impressions. Did the mother 
long for more means to enable her to supply herself with 
necessaries for her prospective offspring? It would be but 
natural, for a mother, who is past the middle age to feel that 
she was more needy and helpless at her time of life than at 
any earlier period. 

The examination should be extended, in the case of a 
murderous character, as to the mother's feelings at the time. 
Did she feel ugly and cross to know that she must be bothered 
with a child to care for, when she was perhaps unable to 
support herself? A middle aged prospective mother's mental 
state differs from the young and active person. The aflFec- 
tionSj as well as all other powers, are waning, and if the 
mother is a depraved and ignorant person, its eflPects must be 
much more serious to the forming brain than if that mother 
was young and imbued with a lively sense of her obligations 
to herself and to her oflFspring. All these factors must be 
tnken into account; if not, the deduction will be unreliable. 
A writer in the North American Review says: "Criminologists 
arc all wrong, and criminals can be reclaimed; eighty per cent, 
of the prisoners that I came in contact with became good 
citizens." In his argument the gentleman inclines to trans- 
cendentalism; relies upon something supernatural. When it 
is considered that this writer can only report as to the behav- 
ior of those he knew, and must have been unable to follow 
all of them into private life until their death, we assert that 
he could not find out all the facts in regard to the criminal's 
after life, for two reasons: First — The state does not provide 
means for such investigation, and. Second — Officers of public 
reformatories have no time to visit their discharged and 
usually roving ex-wards. The North American Review 
writer stands alone in his opposition to all the evidence, of 
prison congresses, reports of prison wardens, government in- 
spectors and prison surgeons, from all over the world. 

Such isolated articles do not produce a shadow of conclu- 
sive evidence to corroborate their argument, and are simply 



opinions based upon insufficient evidence. More proof must 
be furnished by such writers, before their conclusions can be 
accepted, when such men as warden Bmeh, of Sing Sing, 
(now deceased) reported that six out of every seven male 
convicts are returned to prison after release, and prison 
statistics corroborate the statement. When that writer has a 
full and complete life history of the eighty per cent, of his 
criminal acquaintances who have reformed, and remained re- 
formed, then the opinion will have weight. 

Education, so far as the prevention of crime is concerned, 
is conceded to be a failure, and is only eflFectivo in the case of 
that large class of humanity who are between the two ex* 
tremes; that is, between those who are bom good — who would 
not become criminals in any case — and the instinctive crim- 

The superintendent of the Illinois Reform eehool says: 
"The longer we live the more it is impressed upon our hearts 
that education, science, philosophy, and the individual arts, 
have not, nor can they cure the bom criminal whose crime 
exerts itself in the morning, noon and eveniug of life. He is 
as tangible as matter, and as dangerous as a pestilence." 

Prof. Nicolays says: "If defective education is ttie cause 
of every evil in the human family, then there should be less 
morality in the country than in the city, the sense of duty 
should be stronger in the one who has had a higher educa- 
tion, but the contrary is true." The cities contain three-tenths 
of the whole number of inhabitants, and they furnish five- 
tenths, or half, of all the criminals. 

Dr. Proal says: "Instruction is not sufficient to repress 
crime; many schools have been opened, but no prisons closed/' 
We must educate the coming mothers; teach them how to 
produce offspring who will be able to resist the temptation to 
commit acts which are detrimental to themfielves aa well as 
society at large. 



"Sulolde IncrcaBes with civilization; among: primitive rftoea It ib rarely -heard of/' 

The number of suicides reported by the press, daily, is ab- 
solutely appalling and its steady increase is alarming. It is 
not only on^ or two a day, but almost a score of them. In 
but few cases is there any cause assigned by the chief actors 
in the drama. Records have been kept since 1830, so that the 
fact as to its increase can be verified. Not alone is this true 
in the United States, but also of all other civilized nations. 

The fundamental cause of the abuormal mentality of a 
self-murderer has never been explained by those who have 
written upon the subject. Here and there a suicide leaves a 
note, saying that he or she is tired of life, or some other frivo- 
loas excuse, but such explanations do not explain the cause 
of the insane desire to overcome the natural desire, love of 
life, which is based upon that great natural law of self-pre- 
servation, which is a fundamental law of creation implanted 
by nature, and is the most imperative law known to man. 
Suicide is a direct reversal of the instinct of self-preservation 
and should be a subject for careful investigation. 

In some of the addresses before the Medico Legal Club^ 
in New York City, it was proven that suicides were more fre- 
quent among men than among women, but in all the discus- 
sions there is a seeming lack of any attempt to find out why 
there is a brain malformation among those who lack the will- 
power to resist an inclination to commit self-murder. A sui- 


cide must necessarily be endowed with an abnormal brain 
Btructnre. If not, there would be an innate desire to preserve 
life, which is based upon the natural law of self- preservation. 
Suicide from mental derangement is increasing, but its rate 
can not be determined. Morrelli says, "One-third of all sui- 
cides may be attributed to insanity." There is an alarming 
increase in child suicide. 

Dr. Winslow reported 7,190 cases of suicide, 4337 of whom 
were men and 2,853 women. The report, as seen by the 
writer, did not state how .many were under the age of matur- 
ity. June and July have the most; October and November 
the least number of suicides. Climatic cause has never been 
shown, except that in the temperate zone they are more num- 
erous. By some it is thought that the season has an effect 
upon the minds of the victims. Another singular fact came 
to light— suicides are almost exclusively confined to countries 
where the spirit of freedom is most pronounced; where liberty, 
equality and fraternity flourishes. In barbarous or despotic 
countries suicides are seldom heard of. So-called higher 
education and suicide, with accompanying evils, go hand in 
hand. In Koman history, suicide was epidemic at the time 
when that nation was at its highest point in civilization. If 
these are facts, and it is doubtful whether thoy can be sue* 
cessfuliy controverted, what can be deduced from them 

History teaches that there is but one period which reminds 
us of our own times, so far as the spirit of pessimism and skep- 
ticism is concerned, as well as the general unrest which per- 
vades the very atmosphere of our large cities and permeates all 
classes. That period was just before the death agony of the 
Koman empire. The people of that age had lost faith in 
paganism and philosophy; a spirit of dejection had crept into 
the hearts of the people; they lost the last vestige of faith in 
their gods and found relief in suicide. But it is notable that 
there is no record of the* suicide of children. Relief through 
self-murder was only among the aristocracy of mind* It 


differed from this age, in the fact that then only the most 
intellectual, and those of the highest culture, were the victims 
of the suicidal mania. In this age it hovers like a pall 
over the majority of humankind — not that I mean the major- 
ity liave a desire to commit suicide, but that it penados the 
rich and poor, the young as well as the old. What is the 
cause of this mental distress? It is not my province to 
attempt to discuss the cause of the mania to commit self- 
deBtruction in ancient pagan Rome, but I do propose to give 
my views as to the mental status which impels so many in 
this age, among the most cultivated and highly civilized 
nations, to commit suicide. 

Before taking up that subject, I desire to call your atten- 
tion to a statement of the cause, as given by some of the able 
writers of our times. Max Nordau says: "It is the utter dis- 
gust at the emptiness of life, and they seek the suicido^s grave 
to escape from it." Another says, "It is environment/ '^^and 
that is only another way to express the same sentiment j still 
another, that "It is caused by the inordinate use of aloohol 
and tobacco, as well as other narcotics;" and along comes a 
beliLwer in the transmission of hereditary traits and atavism, 
who says: "It is caused by the degeneration of humanity, be- 
caue=se of ancestral agencies; strains of evil which have been 
developing for centuries. Through heredity every man car- 
ries in his mind the ideas of his ancestors, unconscious of it, 
and but dimly recognized," — and clinches it by saying, *'It is 
a eiirae from which we cannot escape." All these various 
reasons to which they attribute the cause of the mania for 
self -murder are but half truths, if they are truths at alL which 
I doubt, and the question arises again, What is the cause of 
the mental distress so common to civilized peoples? 

The average writer upon the subject of suicide, argues 
that the cause lies in a lack of proper education; that there 
should be more moral and religious instruction to overcome 
the morbid and abnormal condition of the would-be suicide. 
We would like to ask that writer how he would go to work to 


instruct the six-ye^r-old child of Mrs. W. — the case is given 
further along in this article. Such writers forget that '*A 
divine impulse is imprisoned in every atom of living matter, 
to defend it from destruction and to give direction to its de- 
velopment." Love of life is an ultimate unit in conscious- 
nesa; we cannot analyze it. Nature itself implants the de- 
sire for self-preservation in the human heart stronger and 
more powerful than it is possible for man to teach; that 
impulse which, underlying human consciousness, gives direc- 
tion to thought and emotion, to the end that the individual 
once evolved may be preserved, is burned into the brain of 
every normal living, breathing organism, be it humanj animal 
or insect. 

It would be impossible for any one, in any known lan- 
guage, to formulate a plan by which a teacher or a parent 
could tell which one of the family, or of the clasa at school 
is inclined to self-murder, and then how to teach it, would 
puzzle the wisest. Such an argument is weak and illogical; 
this is self-evident, when it is considered that suicides are 
common only where there is the most and the highest stand- 
ard of education, and almost unknown among primitive peo- 
ple. If one who is studying the subject of suicidal mania 
should ask himself, Why do suicides occur largely among the 
most intelligent and highly educated? and follows the train 
of thought to which it leads, then another pertinent inquiry 
would arise: Is it not because of an abnormal brain develop^ 
ment? To this the important question would follow: Why 
has one member of a given family a weaker brain structure 
than others of the same parentage? That such an investi- 
gation will lead to the discovery of the fundamental cause of 
self-murder, we have not a shadow of doubt. 

In the study of causation of the suicidal mania, in a given 
case, the investigator is only wasting time and energy in try- 
ing to charge it to environment, except as in such cases as I 
shall refer to near the close of my argument. If the investi- 
gator should study the mental condition of the suicide's 



mother, that is her mentality before the birth of the self- 
murderer, it would be found that that mother had wished she 
were dead, rather than suffer the pangs of maternity. In this 
connection it would be advisable for the student of causation 
to find out whether that particular suicide whose case is under 
investigation is the first, or a child of later birth, as I did 
in the case of congenital epileptics while studying that sub- 
ject- If it is the first,, the chances are that all the children of 
that mother will have suicidal tendencies; but they may be 
modified under favorable circumstances. The argument on 
this lino is, that a womkn who fears to undergo a perfectly 
natural ordeal, must be abnormal, if so she will have a mania 
for suicide at each period and thus transmit the suicidal ten- 
dency to each one of her oflFspring. 

I have never found the first child in a family epileptic. 
There may be an idiot, through severe fright or shock, or even 
the sight of, and continual thought of, an idiotic person. 
The writer know of one such case; the child is at this writing 
less than ten years of age, and is an incurable idiot. The 
first child in a family may be an imbecile as in a case related 
by a physician, where the mother who earnestly d^ired a 
babe, was afflicted with rheumatism; her medical attendant 
gave her a medicine which so affected the brain and body of 
her unborn child that it came into the world defective. This 
is evidence that mothers and their medical advisers cannot be 
too careful in administering drugs of any kind to a pro- 
spective mother. I have asked many physicians and others 
in my travels, if in their experience, they knew of any first- 
born, wiio w^ere epileptics. Not in a single case was there 
an aflirmative answer, except as noted. They were in all cases 
children of later birth. 

To return to the subject of suicide, where the victim is not 
the eldest child it will be found that the mother dreaded 
maternity again, as said before, and her mind was filled with 
thoughts of self-destruction, as "Oh! If it were not for my 




little ones who would be motherless I would kill myBelf.'' It 
is only her love for her living babies that prevents it. 

Where an entire family becomes suicidal and "shuffle off 
this mortal coil" early in life, it will be found that the mother 
had a morbid fear from the very first knowledge that she was 
to become a mother, and suffered ^reat mental torture, think- 
ing that she could not survive it^ and had contemplated Bui- 
cide. It would be well for the student of causation to find out, 
if possible, Rt what period of time the mother had such mor- 
bid ideas. This phase of the subject will be difficult to in- 
veBtigate; first> because of the lapse of time between the 
mother's mental condition before the birth of, and the com- 
mission of the suicidal act by her offspring; and second, in 
many cases the mother cannot be reached at all, or she may 
refuse to be interviewed for yarions reasons. 

A mother can and does influence and shape the brain 
structure of her child, and through the formation of that brain 
fibre she implants a desire to commit acts at certain periods, 
which at other times the individual has a positive disgust for* 
This is proven by the fact that some men get on a spree 
every month or two, while with others there is a lapse of six 
or seven months. The writer baa two such cases in mind, 
both of thera. exceptionally fine men at other times; they are 
of first-class parentage, and not related to each other; one 
will only drink beer, the other nothing but whiskey, when 
such attacks come over them. In one case the parents were 
radical temperance people. Such cases are well known to all 

Science has not solved the problem as to the cause of the 
suicidal mania; not even a plausible theory has been ad- 
vanced, much less a remedy. AVe maintain that there is no 
cure for the suicidal mania among those living, but the pro- 
duction of such brain structures can be prevented in the future. 

The problem of the cause of suicide and its prevention has 
baffled many philosophers in every civilized land. This is 
the first attempt to formulate a theory which has as its basis 


empirical observation — that is, the mothers were studied, not 
the victims — and it is submitted to the thoughtful considera- 
tion of scientific humanitarians, hoping that if it is not a true 
theory, it will lead to a correct solution of this vexing and 
weighty problem. The whole trend of investigation has been 
as to the moral nature, the environment, the likes and dislikes 
of the suicide, when it should have been the mentality of the 
victim's maternal progenitor. As is here suggested, find oat 
the mental condition of the suicide's mother a few months be- 
fore the birth of her oflFspring, and on that line will be found 
a Boltition of the problem. 

To illustrate, I have in mind a family consisting of three 
children at B. R. When Mrs. W., the mother, married, she 
had morbid ideas upon the subject of maternity; had a convic- 
tion, which she could not dispel, that she could not survive 
the ordeal; those fears, for the time being, unbalanced hor 
mind; she suflFered intense mental agony at each period; 
wished and longed for death rather than motherhood. She 
became the mother of three children; all of them committed 
suicide, one of them at the age of six years, the others before 
they arrived at maturity. 

At S. F. a boy aged twelve years hung himself in the barn;: 
the cFiuse assigned was that the teacher had been very strict 
witii him. The case was related to the writer by the Rev. 
Mrs. C, of L. W. It is impossible for any one to teach such 
children not to commit suicide. It is folly to waste any 
time discussing it. 

The New York papers have of late reported the case of a 
dressmaker who, in the presence of her three assistants, one 
evening, began to talk of her troubles, and three of those 
women then and there decided to kill themselves; the fourth ^ 
a girl aged twenty, said, **I do not want to be left alone." 
They wrote farewell letters to their friends, sent for some 
cliarcofd, closed all the openings into the room, and lit the 
charcoal. The neighbors heard them singing until late at 


night, the next morning, all four of them were found to be 
suffocated by the fumes of the charcoal. 

A few days before, a young woman, a student of music, 
had a quarrel with a friend; she called upon and dined with 
three other associates, told them that she contemplated sui- 
cide; they discussed the best and easiest means; deciding 
upon poison. She went to a drug store, procured it, returned 
and deliberately drank it in their presence. Her friends did 
not interfere until after the poison began its work, and con- 
vulsions set in; the police were called and told what the vic- 
tim had done, but it was too late to save her life, just as she 
had intended it should be. 

Because they could not marry, on account of relationship, 
and their religion forbidding it, Patrick Sullivan and his 
(K>UBin Annie Sullivan killed themselves by inhaling gas in 
a Westchester (N. Y.) hotel. They were Roman Catholics. 

The recital of these cases is dwelt upon to call the attention 
of the sociologist to the fact of how small a thing in the nature 
of environment can completely reverse the law of self-preser- 
vation ; fche actors in the last case, violated not only a natural, 
but a church and a state law. The suicidal act proves that 
there is a cause which lies deeper than education, or environ- 
ment. This desire is put into the warp and woof of the brain 
by the artisan — the mother— who is the instrument in the 
hands of the Creator, but who through ignorance disobeys his 
laws. It is a subject that demands the serious attention, not 
alone of the Christian world, but the sociologist and especially 
the state. Educators should institute measures through a 
system of education, that will teach the coming mothers the 
great danger of allowing their minds to become morbid upon 
the subject of self-destruction at such periods, that is, before 
the birth of their offspring. 

The present generation of expectant mothers must be 
reached by the humanitarian element, as has been said, 
through personal work. Here is a field for the teachers. It 
is of far greater importance than any other line, because such 



inatruction will carry with it a knowledge ot, and a cure for, 
many evils which are undermining the social life of the 
nation. It embraces th« whole range of social economicB, in 
its most liberal definition, and depends upon, or is governed 
by laws of which the public have very little knowledge. It 
could be added to the study of physiology in the higher 
grades of schools and colleges, supplemented by the parents 
in the homes. But the parents must be taught before they 
can become teachers. In such work mothers' meetings and 
child study clubs can do an immense amount of good, and 
they may become a most important factor in the present and 
tor the future life of mankind. There is no other remedy for 
overcoming the mania, or to prevent the mania for self- 
destruction, except by curtailing the production of abnormal 
brain structures, and this can only be done in the manner 
suggested here. As is shown, so-called higher education will 
not do the work. 

A thorough comprehension of the subject, viz.: the 
mother's mental influence ujxjn the brain structure of her off- 
spring, will retard, or reduce, not alone the suicidal mania, 
but also the birth of idiots and imbeciles, as a suicidal mania 
is a species of insanity. The highest medical authority main- 
tains this assertion, nor can it be successfully controverted, 
'Tis true, there may be here and there an exceptional case, as 
for instance a person who is aged and friendless, and suffers 
through poverty, or is afflicted by disease and is suffering 
great torture by reason of a chronic ailment. But these ©re 
exceptions and are not the rule. 

The suicidal mania resolves itself into that of maternal 
impressions. Suicide is only one phase of a great question. 
As has been said, it is of the greatest importance to the pres- 
ent, but is still greater to coming generations. 





There are some Buper-sensitive and extremely prudish 
peraong, who say: "It is not fair to single out the mothers; 
laying the entire blame upon them, without putting a share 
o£ it upon the father," This is a species of self-justificationj 
and the neglect to place the responsibility where it belongs is 
eesentially wicked, as it is an attempt to suppress the truth. 
Such critics admit that mothers should know the truth, but 
they imply that only part of it should be taught; by omitting 
the whole truth there is committed the sin of omission, 

'Tis true, I have laid but little stress upon the father's re- 
sponsibility, for when the subject is critically analyzed, it is 
found that the father is but a emah factor, when compared to the 
mother's mental influence, taken in connection with her phys- 
ical being. In the mother rests the power to alter the struct- 
ure of her child, for weal or for woe. The reader should not 
infer that there is no responsibility resting upon the father. 
The father is responsible for the mother's environment, and 
through it he is responsible for her equable temperament at 
auch a time. Mothers should be doubly protected, first, by 
a strong public sentiment which would condemn any man who 
misused his wife at such periods; and, second, stringent laws 
should be passed, with severe penalties, to punish a man who 
in any sense abuses his wife, while in sn^h a condition, not 
alone because of the mother^ but for the ruture welfare of the 
child and good of society* 


If I have made out a case in favor of maternal impreeeion, 
then it is plainly evident that something must be done by the 
sociologists of the age to prevent the procreation of immoral 
brains. The quicker good men and women lay aside that 
false modesty, which is essentially immoral, and thoughtfully 
study the vital problem, what can be done for the betterment 
of the human race, from the stand-point of common sense, 
the sooner will the criminal classes who are irreclaimable, and 
upon whom time, energy and means are wasted, be eliminated 
from the care and consequent supervision of hnmantariaus^ 
placed under police supervision, which will in the course of 
time eradicate them, and through proper instruction future 
mothers will produce a better standard of brain power, and 
the result will be, a cleaner, brighter, nobler manhood and 
womanhood, who will occupy the places now filled by imper* 
fpctly constructed human beings. After a thoughtful exam^ 
ination of the entire subject, pro and con, I am compelled to 

That the mothers are the sole arbiters of, and are the only 
ones in whom the power rests, to map out the life destiny of 
their offspring. The objections which have been advanced 
are not sufficient to overcome the great benefit to mankind in 
teaching the truths of maternal impressions. 

Having come to this conclusion, I may be allowed to par- 
aphrase a great reformer. Here I take my stand, rise or fall 
I stake my humble reputation upon the facts as presented in 
this work, and the conclusions drawn from them. If the 
reader is convinced that the theory of maternal impressions 
is correct, then the question remains, What is each one^s 

With the earnest and confident assurance that by a careful 
and thorough comprehension of the subject of Maternal Im- 
pressions by the coming parents, humanity will be elevated, 
thus placing it upon a higher plane of civilization, this work 
is tlioughtfuUy submitted. 




The following cases are inserted to start some one on a 
line of investigation of varieties in animals; 

Mr, Mock of Spring Creek, Ky., had a setter slut with pup. 
One day two Italians accompanied by a performing bear came 
into the yard, the dog heard them, started out of the house on 
a keen run, in her usual lively manner, emitting sharp yel^ie. 
The bear heard her, and as she came to the comer of the 
house, he raised on his hind feet, and the dog ran squarely 
into the bear, head first, then sprang away quickly, sneaked off, 
and seemed to have lost her spirits all at once» Mr» Mock 
noticed it, and asked the Italians what had happened, and as 
he was somewhat of a philosopher, he decided to note the re- 
sult; when she littered, which was in his office, he happened 
to be in at the time. The dog turned and saw what she had 
produced. The pups looked like bear cubs, claws and all, 
She grabbed one of them aiid crushed it in her mouth. Mr. 
Mock saw»that she intended to kill them, took the other three 
and fed them by hand. The dog tried to get the others, and 
did succeed in killing two more of them within a few days. 
When the remaining pup was three weeks old, Mr. Mock had 
businoss from home for the entire day. He took the remain- 
ing pup and placed it in a squirrel cage and hung it to the 
ceiling, so that the mother dog could not get at it if she suc- 
ceeded in getting into the office. She did get into the office, 
which was deserted, and barked so long and so loud, that one 
of the men who knew nothing of the case, thinking that some 
one had put it up there to plague her, took the cage down. 
He saw that it was a freak and tried to hang it back when the 
mother bit him in the leg so that he dropped the cage and 
ran. She tore the wires apart, killed the pup and choked 
herself to death in her frantic endeavors \o free herself. 

Related by the Rev. Mr. McKee, pastor of the North La 
Orosse, Wis., First Presbyterian Church, who vouches as to the 
facts. It cannot be verified as Mr. Mock is dead. 

The question is why did that mother try so hard to kill 


her young? It is a problem for some philosopher. We give 
it up. 

A stock breeder had a blooded cow with calf. While lying 
down her tail froze in the manure, and when the cow got up 
she tore it so that it bled. When Mr; P. saw it, three hogs 
were following her around the yard, jumping up to catch the 
warm blood which was flowing from the injured tail* He 
bound up the wound and put her in the barn. Five months 
later she had a calf, whose tail at maturity was only sis in- 
ches long, with a tuft at the end, thus plainly showing that 
the injury to the mother cow's tail stopped the development 
of her calf's tail. Was this the result of mental impressions? 
We think it was. 

The assistant superintendent of the Industrial School at 
0-, vouches for the following: 

His father is a breeder of fine sheep, In the spring of 
189B, about one-third of the lambs that were dropped were 
black and white, when they should have been, act^ording to 
heredity, pure white. A careful investigation was made, 
when a nest of skunks were found under the sheep shed. 
The skunks were destroyed, and the next season the lambs 
were again pure white, when heredity had full sway. The 
cause of the variation in the color of the lambs, was the op- 
eration of the ewes' brain upon their lambs, caused by seeing 
the black and white skunks who were running among the 
ewes, while they were under the shed. 

The list of cases both in man and animals could be indef- 
definitely extended, but it would weary the reader* One can 
find corroborative cases in every neighborhood, if a little 
pains is taken. 



Since the first edition was issued the author has been col- 
lecting additional evidence for a more scientific treatise of 
the subject, and gathered many cases, all of them from reput- 
able physicians. They embrace varied phases of human 
idiosyncracies and deformities, and cover the entire range of 
mental and physical peculiarities. These cases, in connection 
with the subjoined letter from A. C. Rogers, M. D,, who has 
been engaged in the work of caring for imbeciles over twenty 
years, confirms the author's conclusions as to the cause of 
congenital idiocy, imbecility and feeblemindednega, which are 
all closely allied to epilepsy. (See chapter on Epilepsy*) 
That the author has opened the way for a more thorough 
investigation of these problems, as well as the fundamental 
cause of suicides, will be admitted by aU who are scientifio 
observers. The following are only a very limited number of 
the many he has and to which he is adding daily. 

Dr. A. E. Smith, of Freeport, 111., gave the author the fol- 
lowing: Mrs. B. of N., in an attempt to avoid having any 
more children, which failed, took secale carnutum (ergot). 
Her child is at this writing nine years old, has never had any 
control over the movement of its head, arms or legs; there is 
a lack of co-ordination of the muscles; is conscious, that is, 
will smile when spoken to, but cannot talk. Dr. Smith con- 
cludes, that as ergot acts solely upon the muscles, his brain is 
not aflFected. 



Dr. Evans, of Madison, Wis., related this: Mrs. J. of M., 
in 1895, gave birth to a child vho had no fontanelle (soft 
part at the top of the head); its head was very small and 
solid like a cocoanut. The entire organism had been retar<fed, 
not a well developed child in any of its parts — an idiot. The 
mother told the doctor she had taken emmenagoguo tablets^ 
she did not want any more children. 

Office of Superintendent Minnesota School for Feeble- 
Minded Children, Faribault, Minn., Oct. 2, 1897. Mr. C, J. 
Bayer— Dear Sir: In reply to yours of late date, in regard 
to your thoory that imbecile epilepsy is the result of attempted 
abortion by the use of drugs, .... I have no doubt the 
cause you assign to seventy-five per cent of the cases is the 

correct one It is a common statement of mothers of 

feeble-minded children that the condition of their children ia 
due to the use of "powerful medicines," usually prescribed by^ 
physicians during gestation. Very sincerely yours, 

A. C. Rogers, 

The following is an account of the birth of an idiot, caused 
by maternal impression, related by Dr. L. P. Foster, of Min- 
neapolis, Minn. : Mrs. W. of M. gave birth to a child who^ 
had no foreliead; its head sloped from the eyebrows back- 
ward, a perfect idiotic head. During the third or fourth 
month, Mrs. W. was visiting her parents in a neighboring^ 
town. A foolish, idiotic, half-grown man, who lived in the 
town, came into the house. The sight of hfcn affected her 
severely; she could not get him out of her mind. Dr. Foster 
said, "I have not a shadow of doubt that the cause in thi& 
case was mate'rnal impressions."