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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index M > Henry Morton Quotes

Henry Morton
(11 Dec 1836 - 9 May 1902)

American chemist who was the first president of the Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, New Jersey. He was a popular lecturer on science and one of the founders of the American Chemical Society.

Science Quotes by Henry Morton (4 quotes)

How can he [Thomas Edison] call it a wonderful success when everyone acquainted with the subject will recognize it as a conspicuous failure?
— Henry Morton
In The New York Herald, (18 Dec 1879). As quoted and cited in Rob Kaplan (ed.), Science Says (2001), 200.
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The first difficulty of all is the production of a lamp which shall be thoroughly reliable, and neither complicated nor expensive. All attempts up to the present lamp in this direction are acknowledged to be failures, and, as I have pointed out, there does not seem to be any novelty such as would authorize us to hope for a better success in the present one.
— Henry Morton
In 'A Scientific View of It: Prof. Henry Morton Not Sanguine About Edison’s Success', New York Times (28 Dec 1879), 1.
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The next difficulty is in the economical production of small lights by electricity. This is what is commonly meant by the phrase, ‘dividing the electric light.’ Up to the present time, and including Mr. Edison’s latest experiments, it appears that this involves an immense loss of efficiency. Next comes the difficulty of distributing on any large scale the immense electric currents which would be needed.
— Henry Morton
In 'A Scientific View of It: Prof. Henry Morton Not Sanguine About Edison’s Success', New York Times (28 Dec 1879), 1.
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When I examine the conclusion [on experiments with the electric light bulb experiments published in the Herald] which everyone acquainted with the subject will recognize as a conspicuous failure, trumpeted as a wonderful success, I [conclude]... that the writer ... must either be very ignorant, and the victim of deceit, or a conscious accomplice in what is nothing less than a fraud upon the public.
— Henry Morton
Letter to the Sanitary Engineer (22 Dec 1880). Quoted in Charles Bazermanl, The Languages of Edison's Light (2002), 186.
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Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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- 90 -
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- 80 -
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- 70 -
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- 50 -
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- 40 -
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- 30 -
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- 20 -
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- 10 -
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