Guide to Nature Magazine
THE GUIDE TO
NATURE Magazine was founded by the Agassiz Association in 1908. Originally
located in Stamford,
the magazine moved soon
to "Arcadia" in Sound Beach. The last issue was published in December
There was a prospectus in May of 1908 (see image
at right) with a formal announcement and a description of the Agassiz Association.
The first issue was published in April 1908.
For the announcement and the magazine's main aim,
nature, see below. There is also a Q&A section, such
as on the care of alligators (June 1910 issue), as well as poems.
Of interest to the Stamford
Historical Society and its constituents are an illustrated real estate section
and articles and references to Stamford, mostly advertisements, obituaries,
Thus, it is a font of information, much of which
is listed in the finding aid. Here is an example, the
aid for June 1910:
Picture & article
Homes of Jevne & Parsons
New Alhambra Theater
Case Acres, home of Mrs. Thos. S. Gray, Newfield
Sammis farm, Newfield
Article in regards to Maria Mitchell, Vassar
Davenport home, 1775
Unfortunately, there are no tables of content; thus
the researcher has to leaf through a magazine, even with the finding aid. But
there are dividends, such as little tidbits not listed in the finding aid, for
example these notes in the real estate section as to who bought what:
It also brings an unexpected bonus to the Photo Department:
In the Real Estate section, there are photos of mansions, and a number of articles
are illustrated. On request, such images can be scanned by the Stamford Historical
Society, and prints thereof may be purchased.
of such images can be viewed in the December 2001 Photo Selection
THE AA MEANS.
Association stands for the study of nature from the student's point of view.
It is the
University and not the Kindergarten.
Whether you are four or eighty-four it says, be an original investigator; see
things for yourself; look into the thing, not into what has been written
the thing; what you find, not what someone tells you to find; begin with nature:
in the words of the great scientist from whom we take our name, "Study
nature, not books." The Association does not stand for the Kindergarten
notion which says, "I will show you how to play the game; then we all will
play it." It does not tell you to study this or that and to do it this
month, regardless of the fact that "this" or "that" may
be totally inaccessible to you.
The AA has no
publishing house to advertise, no list of general nature study books to sell,
to be selected from its list
of publications and saying, "Study these things this month," but meaning,
"Buy these books this month." The AA publishes its own Official journal
or Bulletin when it is necessary, and has its own handbooks of instruction
to organization, the total income from the sales going to enlarge the field
of its activity. It is to support no Institution. It does not delude its members
into the belief that they may receive something for nothing. Its officers have
no salary. They give their time and their labor, and are paid by thanks. It
confers honors where it sees honors are especially due, but never with the
designs of some Institution or periodical advertisement. There are no money
dividends. It is an Association for mutual helpfulness, in which every member
every Officer, every Councilor contributes time or money, or both, to further
the original study of nature. The AA believes that there can be no higher occupation
for the human mind and nothing more inspiring than the contemplation of some
aspect of this beautiful world.
It frankly invites you and with no secondary motive
to join its ranks, to help and to be helped, to give your time and your mite
of money to help yourself and to help others, and to receive gratefully the
assistance that others can give you.
In this matter
of mutual helpfulness in the study of nature, by all ages and in all places,
is the oldest, most extensive
and most efficient organization in existence. Its membership means aid; its
honors mean merit; its study of nature means love for nature, and its onward
course is ever true to its motto, "Per naturam ad Deum." On these
principles, and to this end, it cordially invites you, if you are not already
a Member, to become one, or to form a Chapter of Members. If you are a Member,
it urges you to greater activity in extending its influence. The work of the
AA was never more needed than in this age of artificiality, of the nervous stress
and strain of the modern struggle for existence, of the tension of high keyed
life, of intense competition, of financial fluctuations and of varying prosperity
and adversity. Now more than ever there is a deep meaning in the words "back
to nature," or better still, "keep anchored in nature."
More on Louis Agassiz, after whom the Agassiz
Association was named.
Note: Stamford residents may find out more about the Agassiz Association on JSTOR, by accessing Ferguson Online Research Databases: Go to JSTOR and sign in with your library card number, then search for "Agassiz Association."
Finding Aid, Guide to Nature Magazine