War Inventions and How they were Invented - Charles Gibson

The author of this book is a talented science writer for children who is able to explain important scientific phenomena in easy to understand language. In this book he explains the evolution of guns, and explosives; the technology associated with battle ships, submarines, torpedoes and mines; various surveying instruments, and finally fighter aircraft. Although students of all ages are spellbound by these fascinating technical histories, the book is a favorite of middle school age boys in particular.

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[Book Cover] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson
View from Submarine


[Illustration] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson


[Title Page] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson
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[Dedication] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson
[Title] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson


This is the fourth volume of the "Science for Children" Library, each volume of which is complete in itself. It goes without saying that the subject of War Inventions was suggested by the Great European War. During these years of warfare even children became interested in the instruments of destruction used in that barbarous thing which we call War. We must destroy our enemy, or he will destroy us. The great American historian—Washington Irving—said, a hundred and fifty years ago: "The natural principle of war is to do the most harm to our enemy with the least harm to ourselves."

Children are always interested to hear how things came about, and so the author has endeavoured to show how the weapons of war came to be invented. By having imaginary talks with soldiers of long ago, we are impressed with the very great difference between the guns of to-day and those used in the battles of Waterloo and Trafalgar. By comparing a naval fight of one hundred years ago with a North Sea fight in the Great War, we realise the enormous advance made in the weapons of destruction. Among other marvels the story includes ships that go under the sea, and ships that go up in the air; we see how science has increased the powers of destruction to such an extent that we earnestly hope there may never be another war.

The author is indebted to his friends, Professor James Muir, D.Sc., M.A., and James W. Campbell, M.Sc., for very kindly reading the proof sheets.

August 1916.

[Contents] from War Inventions by Charles Gibson